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Sample records for cortical neuronal ensemble

  1. Extracting Kinematic Parameters for Monkey Bipedal Walking from Cortical Neuronal Ensemble Activity

    PubMed Central

    Fitzsimmons, Nathan A.; Lebedev, Mikhail A.; Peikon, Ian D.; Nicolelis, Miguel A. L.

    2009-01-01

    The ability to walk may be critically impacted as the result of neurological injury or disease. While recent advances in brain–machine interfaces (BMIs) have demonstrated the feasibility of upper-limb neuroprostheses, BMIs have not been evaluated as a means to restore walking. Here, we demonstrate that chronic recordings from ensembles of cortical neurons can be used to predict the kinematics of bipedal walking in rhesus macaques – both offline and in real time. Linear decoders extracted 3D coordinates of leg joints and leg muscle electromyograms from the activity of hundreds of cortical neurons. As more complex patterns of walking were produced by varying the gait speed and direction, larger neuronal populations were needed to accurately extract walking patterns. Extraction was further improved using a switching decoder which designated a submodel for each walking paradigm. We propose that BMIs may one day allow severely paralyzed patients to walk again. PMID:19404411

  2. Genetic Feedback Regulation of Frontal Cortical Neuronal Ensembles Through Activity-Dependent Arc Expression and Dopaminergic Input

    PubMed Central

    Mastwal, Surjeet; Cao, Vania; Wang, Kuan Hong

    2016-01-01

    Mental functions involve coordinated activities of specific neuronal ensembles that are embedded in complex brain circuits. Aberrant neuronal ensemble dynamics is thought to form the neurobiological basis of mental disorders. A major challenge in mental health research is to identify these cellular ensembles and determine what molecular mechanisms constrain their emergence and consolidation during development and learning. Here, we provide a perspective based on recent studies that use activity-dependent gene Arc/Arg3.1 as a cellular marker to identify neuronal ensembles and a molecular probe to modulate circuit functions. These studies have demonstrated that the transcription of Arc is activated in selective groups of frontal cortical neurons in response to specific behavioral tasks. Arc expression regulates the persistent firing of individual neurons and predicts the consolidation of neuronal ensembles during repeated learning. Therefore, the Arc pathway represents a prototypical example of activity-dependent genetic feedback regulation of neuronal ensembles. The activation of this pathway in the frontal cortex starts during early postnatal development and requires dopaminergic (DA) input. Conversely, genetic disruption of Arc leads to a hypoactive mesofrontal dopamine circuit and its related cognitive deficit. This mutual interaction suggests an auto-regulatory mechanism to amplify the impact of neuromodulators and activity-regulated genes during postnatal development. Such a mechanism may contribute to the association of mutations in dopamine and Arc pathways with neurodevelopmental psychiatric disorders. As the mesofrontal dopamine circuit shows extensive activity-dependent developmental plasticity, activity-guided modulation of DA projections or Arc ensembles during development may help to repair circuit deficits related to neuropsychiatric disorders. PMID:27999532

  3. Genetic Feedback Regulation of Frontal Cortical Neuronal Ensembles Through Activity-Dependent Arc Expression and Dopaminergic Input.

    PubMed

    Mastwal, Surjeet; Cao, Vania; Wang, Kuan Hong

    2016-01-01

    Mental functions involve coordinated activities of specific neuronal ensembles that are embedded in complex brain circuits. Aberrant neuronal ensemble dynamics is thought to form the neurobiological basis of mental disorders. A major challenge in mental health research is to identify these cellular ensembles and determine what molecular mechanisms constrain their emergence and consolidation during development and learning. Here, we provide a perspective based on recent studies that use activity-dependent gene Arc/Arg3.1 as a cellular marker to identify neuronal ensembles and a molecular probe to modulate circuit functions. These studies have demonstrated that the transcription of Arc is activated in selective groups of frontal cortical neurons in response to specific behavioral tasks. Arc expression regulates the persistent firing of individual neurons and predicts the consolidation of neuronal ensembles during repeated learning. Therefore, the Arc pathway represents a prototypical example of activity-dependent genetic feedback regulation of neuronal ensembles. The activation of this pathway in the frontal cortex starts during early postnatal development and requires dopaminergic (DA) input. Conversely, genetic disruption of Arc leads to a hypoactive mesofrontal dopamine circuit and its related cognitive deficit. This mutual interaction suggests an auto-regulatory mechanism to amplify the impact of neuromodulators and activity-regulated genes during postnatal development. Such a mechanism may contribute to the association of mutations in dopamine and Arc pathways with neurodevelopmental psychiatric disorders. As the mesofrontal dopamine circuit shows extensive activity-dependent developmental plasticity, activity-guided modulation of DA projections or Arc ensembles during development may help to repair circuit deficits related to neuropsychiatric disorders.

  4. Dynamics of Cortical Neuronal Ensembles Transit from Decision Making to Storage for Later Report

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

    Decisions based on sensory evaluation during single trials may depend on the collective activity of neurons distributed across brain circuits. Previous studies have deepened our understanding of how the activity of individual neurons relates to the formation of a decision and its storage for later report. However, little is known about how decision-making and decision maintenance processes evolve in single trials. We addressed this problem by studying the activity of simultaneously recorded neurons from different somatosensory and frontal lobe cortices of monkeys performing a vibrotactile discrimination task. We used the hidden Markov model to describe the spatiotemporal pattern of activity in single trials as a sequence of firing rate states. We show that the animal's decision was reliably maintained in frontal lobe activity through a selective state sequence, initiated by an abrupt state transition, during which many neurons changed their activity in a concomitant way, and for which both latency and variability depended on task difficulty. Indeed, transitions were more delayed and more variable for difficult trials compared with easy trials. In contrast, state sequences in somatosensory cortices were weakly decision related, had less variable transitions, and were not affected by the difficulty of the task. In summary, our results suggest that the decision process and its subsequent maintenance are dynamically linked by a cascade of transient events in frontal lobe cortices. PMID:22933781

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-08-29

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

  6. Visual stimuli recruit intrinsically generated cortical ensembles.

    PubMed

    Miller, Jae-eun Kang; Ayzenshtat, Inbal; Carrillo-Reid, Luis; Yuste, Rafael

    2014-09-23

    The cortical microcircuit is built with recurrent excitatory connections, and it has long been suggested that the purpose of this design is to enable intrinsically driven reverberating activity. To understand the dynamics of neocortical intrinsic activity better, we performed two-photon calcium imaging of populations of neurons from the primary visual cortex of awake mice during visual stimulation and spontaneous activity. In both conditions, cortical activity is dominated by coactive groups of neurons, forming ensembles whose activation cannot be explained by the independent firing properties of their contributing neurons, considered in isolation. Moreover, individual neurons flexibly join multiple ensembles, vastly expanding the encoding potential of the circuit. Intriguingly, the same coactive ensembles can repeat spontaneously and in response to visual stimuli, indicating that stimulus-evoked responses arise from activating these intrinsic building blocks. Although the spatial properties of stimulus-driven and spontaneous ensembles are similar, spontaneous ensembles are active at random intervals, whereas visually evoked ensembles are time-locked to stimuli. We conclude that neuronal ensembles, built by the coactivation of flexible groups of neurons, are emergent functional units of cortical activity and propose that visual stimuli recruit intrinsically generated ensembles to represent visual attributes.

  7. Imaging and Optically Manipulating Neuronal Ensembles.

    PubMed

    Carrillo-Reid, Luis; Yang, Weijian; Kang Miller, Jae-Eun; Peterka, Darcy S; Yuste, Rafael

    2017-03-15

    The neural code that relates the firing of neurons to the generation of behavior and mental states must be implemented by spatiotemporal patterns of activity across neuronal populations. These patterns engage selective groups of neurons, called neuronal ensembles, which are emergent building blocks of neural circuits. We review optical and computational methods, based on two-photon calcium imaging and two-photon optogenetics, to detect, characterize, and manipulate neuronal ensembles in three dimensions. We review data using these methods in the mammalian cortex that demonstrate the existence of neuronal ensembles in the spontaneous and evoked cortical activity in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, two-photon optogenetics enable the possibility of artificially imprinting neuronal ensembles into awake, behaving animals and of later recalling those ensembles selectively by stimulating individual cells. These methods could enable deciphering the neural code and also be used to understand the pathophysiology of neurological and mental diseases and design novel therapies. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Biophysics Volume 46 is May 20, 2017. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.

  8. Biomechanics of Single Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Bernick, Kristin B.; Prevost, Thibault P.; Suresh, Subra; Socrate, Simona

    2011-01-01

    This study presents experimental results and computational analysis of the large strain dynamic behavior of single neurons in vitro with the objective of formulating a novel quantitative framework for the biomechanics of cortical neurons. Relying on the atomic force microscopy (AFM) technique, novel testing protocols are developed to enable the characterization of neural soma deformability over a range of indentation rates spanning three orders of magnitude – 10, 1, and 0.1 μm/s. Modified spherical AFM probes were utilized to compress the cell bodies of neonatal rat cortical neurons in load, unload, reload and relaxation conditions. The cell response showed marked hysteretic features, strong non-linearities, and substantial time/rate dependencies. The rheological data were complemented with geometrical measurements of cell body morphology, i.e. cross-diameter and height estimates. A constitutive model, validated by the present experiments, is proposed to quantify the mechanical behavior of cortical neurons. The model aimed to correlate empirical findings with measurable degrees of (hyper-) elastic resilience and viscosity at the cell level. The proposed formulation, predicated upon previous constitutive model developments undertaken at the cortical tissue level, was implemented into a three-dimensional finite element framework. The simulated cell response was calibrated to the experimental measurements under the selected test conditions, providing a novel single cell model that could form the basis for further refinements. PMID:20971217

  9. Mapping cortical mesoscopic networks of single spiking cortical or sub-cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Dongsheng; Vanni, Matthieu P; Mitelut, Catalin C; Chan, Allen W; LeDue, Jeffrey M; Xie, Yicheng; Chen, Andrew Cn; Swindale, Nicholas V; Murphy, Timothy H

    2017-02-04

    Understanding the basis of brain function requires knowledge of cortical operations over wide-spatial scales, but also within the context of single neurons. In vivo, wide-field GCaMP imaging and sub-cortical/cortical cellular electrophysiology were used in mice to investigate relationships between spontaneous single neuron spiking and mesoscopic cortical activity. We make use of a rich set of cortical activity motifs that are present in spontaneous activity in anesthetized and awake animals. A mesoscale spike-triggered averaging procedure allowed the identification of motifs that are preferentially linked to individual spiking neurons by employing genetically targeted indicators of neuronal activity. Thalamic neurons predicted and reported specific cycles of wide-scale cortical inhibition/excitation. In contrast, spike-triggered maps derived from single cortical neurons yielded spatio-temporal maps expected for regional cortical consensus function. This approach can define network relationships between any point source of neuronal spiking and mesoscale cortical maps.

  10. Ensemble Neuron Tracer for 3D Neuron Reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ching-Wei; Lee, Yu-Ching; Pradana, Hilmil; Zhou, Zhi; Peng, Hanchuan

    2017-02-09

    Tracing of neuron paths is important in neuroscience. Recent studies have shown that it is possible to segment and reconstruct three-dimensional morphology of axons and dendrites using fully automatic neuron tracing methods. A specific tracer may be better than others for a specific dataset, but another tracer could perform better for some other datasets. Ensemble of learners is an effective way to improve learning accuracy in machine learning. We developed automatic ensemble neuron tracers, which consistently perform well on 57 datasets of 5 species collected from 7 laboratories worldwide. Quantitative evaluation based on the data generated by human annotators shows that the proposed ensemble tracers are valuable for 3D neuron tracing and can be widely applied to different datasets.

  11. Mapping cortical mesoscopic networks of single spiking cortical or sub-cortical neurons

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Dongsheng; Vanni, Matthieu P; Mitelut, Catalin C; Chan, Allen W; LeDue, Jeffrey M; Xie, Yicheng; Chen, Andrew CN; Swindale, Nicholas V; Murphy, Timothy H

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the basis of brain function requires knowledge of cortical operations over wide-spatial scales, but also within the context of single neurons. In vivo, wide-field GCaMP imaging and sub-cortical/cortical cellular electrophysiology were used in mice to investigate relationships between spontaneous single neuron spiking and mesoscopic cortical activity. We make use of a rich set of cortical activity motifs that are present in spontaneous activity in anesthetized and awake animals. A mesoscale spike-triggered averaging procedure allowed the identification of motifs that are preferentially linked to individual spiking neurons by employing genetically targeted indicators of neuronal activity. Thalamic neurons predicted and reported specific cycles of wide-scale cortical inhibition/excitation. In contrast, spike-triggered maps derived from single cortical neurons yielded spatio-temporal maps expected for regional cortical consensus function. This approach can define network relationships between any point source of neuronal spiking and mesoscale cortical maps. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.19976.001 PMID:28160463

  12. Variety of synchronous regimes in neuronal ensembles.

    PubMed

    Komarov, M A; Osipov, G V; Suykens, J A K

    2008-09-01

    We consider a Hodgkin-Huxley-type model of oscillatory activity in neurons of the snail Helix pomatia. This model has a distinctive feature: It demonstrates multistability in oscillatory and silent modes that is typical for the thalamocortical neurons. A single neuron cell can demonstrate a variety of oscillatory activity: Regular and chaotic spiking and bursting behavior. We study collective phenomena in small and large arrays of nonidentical cells coupled by models of electrical and chemical synapses. Two single elements coupled by electrical coupling show different types of synchronous behavior, in particular in-phase and antiphase synchronous regimes. In an ensemble of three inhibitory synaptically coupled elements, the phenomenon of sequential synchronous dynamics is observed. We study the synchronization phenomena in the chain of nonidentical neurons at different oscillatory behavior coupled with electrical and chemical synapses. Various regimes of phase synchronization are observed: (i) Synchronous regular and chaotic spiking; (ii) synchronous regular and chaotic bursting; and (iii) synchronous regular and chaotic bursting with different numbers of spikes inside the bursts. We detect and study the effect of collective synchronous burst generation due to the cluster formation and the oscillatory death.

  13. Coordinated scaling of cortical and cerebellar numbers of neurons.

    PubMed

    Herculano-Houzel, Suzana

    2010-01-01

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

  14. Coordinated Scaling of Cortical and Cerebellar Numbers of Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Herculano-Houzel, Suzana

    2010-01-01

    While larger brains possess concertedly larger cerebral cortices and cerebella, the relative size of the cerebral cortex increases with brain size, but relative cerebellar size does not. In the absence of data on numbers of neurons in these structures, this discrepancy has been used to dispute the hypothesis that the cerebral cortex and cerebellum function and have evolved in concert and to support a trend towards neocorticalization in evolution. However, the rationale for interpreting changes in absolute and relative size of the cerebral cortex and cerebellum relies on the assumption that they reflect absolute and relative numbers of neurons in these structures across all species – an assumption that our recent studies have shown to be flawed. Here I show for the first time that the numbers of neurons in the cerebral cortex and cerebellum are directly correlated across 19 mammalian species of four different orders, including humans, and increase concertedly in a similar fashion both within and across the orders Eulipotyphla (Insectivora), Rodentia, Scandentia and Primata, such that on average a ratio of 3.6 neurons in the cerebellum to every neuron in the cerebral cortex is maintained across species. This coordinated scaling of cortical and cerebellar numbers of neurons provides direct evidence in favor of concerted function, scaling and evolution of these brain structures, and suggests that the common notion that equates cognitive advancement with neocortical expansion should be revisited to consider in its stead the coordinated scaling of neocortex and cerebellum as a functional ensemble. PMID:20300467

  15. [Collective behavior of cortical neurons upon long-term reinforcement].

    PubMed

    Zhadin, M N

    1995-01-01

    The differential equation describing behaviour of a large ensemble of cortical cells under the extended action of positive or negative reinforcement is derived. The equation is based on the concept that the reinforcement changes synaptic effectiveness in the learning process and a sign of this change depends on an average pulse frequency of a presynaptic neuron and a reinforcement sign. This equation turns out to be identical to the equation which was derived by us earlier based on the ideas that the reinforcement influences on a threshold of neuronal excitation. The comparison of the equation solution with our experimental data lends support for the solution and enables to believe that the serotoninergic system of the brain is a terminal link of the positive reinforcement system and that the noradrenalinergic one is a terminal link of the negative reinforcement.

  16. Selective adaptation in networks of cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Eytan, Danny; Brenner, Naama; Marom, Shimon

    2003-10-15

    A key property of neural systems is their ability to adapt selectively to stimuli with different features. Using multisite electrical recordings from networks of cortical neurons developing ex vivo, we show that neurons adapt selectively to different stimuli invading the network. We focus on selective adaptation to frequent and rare stimuli; networks were stimulated at two sites with two different stimulus frequencies. When both stimuli were presented within the same period, neurons in the network attenuated their responsiveness to the more frequent input, whereas their responsiveness to the rarely delivered stimuli showed a marked average increase. The amplification of the response to rare stimuli required the presence of the other, more frequent stimulation source. By contrast, the decreased response to the frequent stimuli occurred regardless of the presence of the rare stimuli. Analysis of the response of single units suggests that both of these effects are caused by changes in synaptic transmission. By using synaptic blockers, we find that the increased responsiveness to the rarely stimulated site depends specifically on fast GABAergic transmission. Thus, excitatory synaptic depression, the inhibitory sub-network, and their balance play an active role in generating selective gain control. The observation that selective adaptation arises naturally in a network of cortical neurons developing ex vivo indicates that this is an inherent feature of spontaneously organizing cortical networks.

  17. Serotonin modulation of cortical neurons and networks

    PubMed Central

    Celada, Pau; Puig, M. Victoria; Artigas, Francesc

    2013-01-01

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

  18. Serotonin modulation of cortical neurons and networks.

    PubMed

    Celada, Pau; Puig, M Victoria; Artigas, Francesc

    2013-01-01

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

  19. High-Degree Neurons Feed Cortical Computations.

    PubMed

    Timme, Nicholas M; Ito, Shinya; Myroshnychenko, Maxym; Nigam, Sunny; Shimono, Masanori; Yeh, Fang-Chin; Hottowy, Pawel; Litke, Alan M; Beggs, John M

    2016-05-01

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

  20. High-Degree Neurons Feed Cortical Computations

    PubMed Central

    Timme, Nicholas M.; Ito, Shinya; Shimono, Masanori; Yeh, Fang-Chin; Litke, Alan M.; Beggs, John M.

    2016-01-01

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

  1. Recording large-scale neuronal ensembles with silicon probes in the anesthetized rat.

    PubMed

    Schjetnan, Andrea Gomez Palacio; Luczak, Artur

    2011-10-19

    Large scale electrophysiological recordings from neuronal ensembles offer the opportunity to investigate how the brain orchestrates the wide variety of behaviors from the spiking activity of its neurons. One of the most effective methods to monitor spiking activity from a large number of neurons in multiple local neuronal circuits simultaneously is by using silicon electrode arrays. Action potentials produce large transmembrane voltage changes in the vicinity of cell somata. These output signals can be measured by placing a conductor in close proximity of a neuron. If there are many active (spiking) neurons in the vicinity of the tip, the electrode records combined signal from all of them, where contribution of a single neuron is weighted by its 'electrical distance'. Silicon probes are ideal recording electrodes to monitor multiple neurons because of a large number of recording sites (+64) and a small volume. Furthermore, multiple sites can be arranged over a distance of millimeters, thus allowing for the simultaneous recordings of neuronal activity in the various cortical layers or in multiple cortical columns (Fig. 1). Importantly, the geometrically precise distribution of the recording sites also allows for the determination of the spatial relationship of the isolated single neurons. Here, we describe an acute, large-scale neuronal recording from the left and right forelimb somatosensory cortex simultaneously in an anesthetized rat with silicon probes (Fig. 2).

  2. Recording Large-scale Neuronal Ensembles with Silicon Probes in the Anesthetized Rat

    PubMed Central

    Schjetnan, Andrea Gomez Palacio; Luczak, Artur

    2011-01-01

    Large scale electrophysiological recordings from neuronal ensembles offer the opportunity to investigate how the brain orchestrates the wide variety of behaviors from the spiking activity of its neurons. One of the most effective methods to monitor spiking activity from a large number of neurons in multiple local neuronal circuits simultaneously is by using silicon electrode arrays1-3. Action potentials produce large transmembrane voltage changes in the vicinity of cell somata. These output signals can be measured by placing a conductor in close proximity of a neuron. If there are many active (spiking) neurons in the vicinity of the tip, the electrode records combined signal from all of them, where contribution of a single neuron is weighted by its 'electrical distance'. Silicon probes are ideal recording electrodes to monitor multiple neurons because of a large number of recording sites (+64) and a small volume. Furthermore, multiple sites can be arranged over a distance of millimeters, thus allowing for the simultaneous recordings of neuronal activity in the various cortical layers or in multiple cortical columns (Fig. 1). Importantly, the geometrically precise distribution of the recording sites also allows for the determination of the spatial relationship of the isolated single neurons4. Here, we describe an acute, large-scale neuronal recording from the left and right forelimb somatosensory cortex simultaneously in an anesthetized rat with silicon probes (Fig. 2). PMID:22042361

  3. Properties of persistent postnatal cortical subplate neurons.

    PubMed

    Torres-Reveron, Juan; Friedlander, Michael J

    2007-09-12

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

  4. Subplate Neurons: Crucial Regulators of Cortical Development and Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Kanold, Patrick O.

    2009-01-01

    The developing cerebral cortex contains a distinct class of cells, subplate neurons, which form one of the first functional cortical circuits. Subplate neurons reside in the cortical white matter, receive thalamic inputs and project into the developing cortical plate, mostly to layer 4. Subplate neurons are present at key time points during development. Removal of subplate neurons profoundly affects cortical development. Subplate removal in visual cortex prevents the maturation of thalamocortical synapse, the maturation of inhibition in layer 4, the development of orientation selective responses in individual cortical neurons, and the formation of ocular dominance columns. In addition, monocular deprivation during development reveals that ocular dominance plasticity is paradoxical in the absence of subplate neurons. Because subplate neurons projecting to layer 4 are glutamatergic, these diverse deficits following subplate removal were hypothesized to be due to lack of feed-forward thalamic driven cortical excitation. A computational model of the developing thalamocortical pathway incorporating feed-forward excitatory subplate projections replicates both normal development and plasticity of ocular dominance as well as the effects of subplate removal. Therefore, we postulate that feed-forward excitatory projections from subplate neurons into the developing cortical plate enhance correlated activity between thalamus and layer 4 and, in concert with Hebbian learning rules in layer 4, allow maturational and plastic processes in layer 4 to commence. Thus subplate neurons are a crucial regulator of cortical development and plasticity, and damage to these neurons might play a role in the pathology of many neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:19738926

  5. In vivo multiphoton nanosurgery on cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Sacconi, Leonardo; O'Connor, Rodney P; Jasaitis, Audrius; Masi, Alessio; Buffelli, Mario; Pavone, Francesco S

    2007-01-01

    Two-photon microscopy has been used to perform high spatial resolution imaging of spine plasticity in the intact neocortex of living mice. Multiphoton absorption has also been used as a tool for the selective disruption of cellular structures in living cells and simple organisms. In this work, we exploit the spatial localization of multiphoton excitation to perform selective lesions on the neuronal processes of cortical neurons in living mice expressing fluorescent proteins. Neurons are irradiated with a focused, controlled dose of femtosecond laser energy delivered through cranial optical windows. The morphological consequences are then characterized with time lapse 3-D two-photon imaging over a period of minutes to days after the procedure. This methodology is applied to dissect single dendrites with submicrometric precision without causing any visible collateral damage to the surrounding neuronal structures. The spatial precision of this method is demonstrated by ablating individual dendritic spines, while sparing the adjacent spines and the structural integrity of the dendrite. The combination of multiphoton nanosurgery and in vivo imaging in mammals represents a promising tool for neurobiology and neuropharmacology research.

  6. A robust activity marking system for exploring active neuronal ensembles.

    PubMed

    Sørensen, Andreas T; Cooper, Yonatan A; Baratta, Michael V; Weng, Feng-Ju; Zhang, Yuxiang; Ramamoorthi, Kartik; Fropf, Robin; LaVerriere, Emily; Xue, Jian; Young, Andrew; Schneider, Colleen; Gøtzsche, Casper René; Hemberg, Martin; Yin, Jerry Cp; Maier, Steven F; Lin, Yingxi

    2016-09-23

    Understanding how the brain captures transient experience and converts it into long lasting changes in neural circuits requires the identification and investigation of the specific ensembles of neurons that are responsible for the encoding of each experience. We have developed a Robust Activity Marking (RAM) system that allows for the identification and interrogation of ensembles of neurons. The RAM system provides unprecedented high sensitivity and selectivity through the use of an optimized synthetic activity-regulated promoter that is strongly induced by neuronal activity and a modified Tet-Off system that achieves improved temporal control. Due to its compact design, RAM can be packaged into a single adeno-associated virus (AAV), providing great versatility and ease of use, including application to mice, rats, flies, and potentially many other species. Cre-dependent RAM, CRAM, allows for the study of active ensembles of a specific cell type and anatomical connectivity, further expanding the RAM system's versatility.

  7. Acetaminophen Induces Apoptosis in Rat Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Posadas, Inmaculada; Santos, Pablo; Blanco, Almudena; Muñoz-Fernández, Maríangeles; Ceña, Valentín

    2010-01-01

    Background Acetaminophen (AAP) is widely prescribed for treatment of mild pain and fever in western countries. It is generally considered a safe drug and the most frequently reported adverse effect associated with acetaminophen is hepatotoxicity, which generally occurs after acute overdose. During AAP overdose, encephalopathy might develop and contribute to morbidity and mortality. Our hypothesis is that AAP causes direct neuronal toxicity contributing to the general AAP toxicity syndrome. Methodology/Principal Findings We report that AAP causes direct toxicity on rat cortical neurons both in vitro and in vivo as measured by LDH release. We have found that AAP causes concentration-dependent neuronal death in vitro at concentrations (1 and 2 mM) that are reached in human plasma during AAP overdose, and that are also reached in the cerebrospinal fluid of rats for 3 hours following i.p injection of AAP doses (250 and 500 mg/Kg) that are below those required to induce acute hepatic failure in rats. AAP also increases both neuronal cytochrome P450 isoform CYP2E1 enzymatic activity and protein levels as determined by Western blot, leading to neuronal death through mitochondrial–mediated mechanisms that involve cytochrome c release and caspase 3 activation. In addition, in vivo experiments show that i.p. AAP (250 and 500 mg/Kg) injection induces neuronal death in the rat cortex as measured by TUNEL, validating the in vitro data. Conclusions/Significance The data presented here establish, for the first time, a direct neurotoxic action by AAP both in vivo and in vitro in rats at doses below those required to produce hepatotoxicity and suggest that this neurotoxicity might be involved in the general toxic syndrome observed during patient APP overdose and, possibly, also when AAP doses in the upper dosing schedule are used, especially if other risk factors (moderate drinking, fasting, nutritional impairment) are present. PMID:21170329

  8. Cooperative Nonlinearities in Auditory Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Atencio, Craig A.; Sharpee, Tatyana O.; Schreiner, Christoph E.

    2008-01-01

    SUMMARY Cortical receptive fields represent the signal preferences of sensory neurons. Receptive fields are thought to provide a representation of sensory experience from which the cerebral cortex may make interpretations. While it is essential to determine a neuron’s receptive field, it remains unclear which features of the acoustic environment are specifically represented by neurons in the primary auditory cortex (AI). We characterized cat AI spectrotemporal receptive fields (STRFs) by finding both the spike-triggered average (STA) and stimulus dimensions that maximized the mutual information between response and stimulus. We derived a nonlinearity relating spiking to stimulus projection onto two maximally informative dimensions (MIDs). The STA was highly correlated with the first MID. Generally, the nonlinearity for the first MID was asymmetric and often monotonic in shape, while the second MID nonlinearity was symmetric and non-monotonic. The joint nonlinearity for both MIDs revealed that most first and second MIDs were synergistic, and thus should be considered conjointly. The difference between the nonlinearities suggests different possible roles for the MIDs in auditory processing. PMID:18579084

  9. Spike sorting of synchronous spikes from local neuron ensembles

    PubMed Central

    Pröpper, Robert; Alle, Henrik; Meier, Philipp; Geiger, Jörg R. P.; Obermayer, Klaus; Munk, Matthias H. J.

    2015-01-01

    Synchronous spike discharge of cortical neurons is thought to be a fingerprint of neuronal cooperativity. Because neighboring neurons are more densely connected to one another than neurons that are located further apart, near-synchronous spike discharge can be expected to be prevalent and it might provide an important basis for cortical computations. Using microelectrodes to record local groups of neurons does not allow for the reliable separation of synchronous spikes from different cells, because available spike sorting algorithms cannot correctly resolve the temporally overlapping waveforms. We show that high spike sorting performance of in vivo recordings, including overlapping spikes, can be achieved with a recently developed filter-based template matching procedure. Using tetrodes with a three-dimensional structure, we demonstrate with simulated data and ground truth in vitro data, obtained by dual intracellular recording of two neurons located next to a tetrode, that the spike sorting of synchronous spikes can be as successful as the spike sorting of nonoverlapping spikes and that the spatial information provided by multielectrodes greatly reduces the error rates. We apply the method to tetrode recordings from the prefrontal cortex of behaving primates, and we show that overlapping spikes can be identified and assigned to individual neurons to study synchronous activity in local groups of neurons. PMID:26289473

  10. Neuronal ensemble bursting in the basal forebrain encodes salience irrespective of valence

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Shih-Chieh; Nicolelis, Miguel A.L.

    2008-01-01

    SUMMARY Both reward- and punishment-related stimuli are motivationally salient and attract the attention of animals. However, it remains unclear how motivational salience is processed in the brain. Here we show that both reward- and punishment-predicting stimuli elicited robust bursting of many non-cholinergic basal forebrain (BF) neurons in behaving rats. The same BF neurons also responded with similar bursting to primary reinforcement of both valences. Reinforcement responses were modulated by expectation, with surprising reinforcement eliciting stronger BF bursting. We further demonstrate that BF burst firing predicted successful detection of near-threshold stimuli. Together, our results point to the existence of a salience-encoding system independent of stimulus valence. We propose that the encoding of motivational salience by ensemble bursting of non-cholinergic BF neurons may improve behavioral performance by affecting the activity of widespread cortical circuits, and therefore represents a novel candidate mechanism for top-down attention. PMID:18614035

  11. Neuronal ensemble bursting in the basal forebrain encodes salience irrespective of valence.

    PubMed

    Lin, Shih-Chieh; Nicolelis, Miguel A L

    2008-07-10

    Both reward- and punishment-related stimuli are motivationally salient and attract the attention of animals. However, it remains unclear how motivational salience is processed in the brain. Here, we show that both reward- and punishment-predicting stimuli elicited robust bursting of many noncholinergic basal forebrain (BF) neurons in behaving rats. The same BF neurons also responded with similar bursting to primary reinforcement of both valences. Reinforcement responses were modulated by expectation, with surprising reinforcement eliciting stronger BF bursting. We further demonstrate that BF burst firing predicted successful detection of near-threshold stimuli. Together, our results point to the existence of a salience-encoding system independent of stimulus valence. We propose that the encoding of motivational salience by ensemble bursting of noncholinergic BF neurons may improve behavioral performance by affecting the activity of widespread cortical circuits and therefore represents a novel candidate mechanism for top-down attention.

  12. Distinct Fos-Expressing Neuronal Ensembles in the Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex Mediate Food Reward and Extinction Memories

    PubMed Central

    Warren, Brandon L.; Mendoza, Michael P.; Cruz, Fabio C.; Leao, Rodrigo M.; Caprioli, Daniele; Rubio, F. Javier; Whitaker, Leslie R.; McPherson, Kylie B.; Bossert, Jennifer M.; Shaham, Yavin

    2016-01-01

    In operant learning, initial reward-associated memories are thought to be distinct from subsequent extinction-associated memories. Memories formed during operant learning are thought to be stored in “neuronal ensembles.” Thus, we hypothesize that different neuronal ensembles encode reward- and extinction-associated memories. Here, we examined prefrontal cortex neuronal ensembles involved in the recall of reward and extinction memories of food self-administration. We first trained rats to lever press for palatable food pellets for 7 d (1 h/d) and then exposed them to 0, 2, or 7 daily extinction sessions in which lever presses were not reinforced. Twenty-four hours after the last training or extinction session, we exposed the rats to either a short 15 min extinction test session or left them in their homecage (a control condition). We found maximal Fos (a neuronal activity marker) immunoreactivity in the ventral medial prefrontal cortex of rats that previously received 2 extinction sessions, suggesting that neuronal ensembles in this area encode extinction memories. We then used the Daun02 inactivation procedure to selectively disrupt ventral medial prefrontal cortex neuronal ensembles that were activated during the 15 min extinction session following 0 (no extinction) or 2 prior extinction sessions to determine the effects of inactivating the putative food reward and extinction ensembles, respectively, on subsequent nonreinforced food seeking 2 d later. Inactivation of the food reward ensembles decreased food seeking, whereas inactivation of the extinction ensembles increased food seeking. Our results indicate that distinct neuronal ensembles encoding operant reward and extinction memories intermingle within the same cortical area. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT A current popular hypothesis is that neuronal ensembles in different prefrontal cortex areas control reward-associated versus extinction-associated memories: the dorsal medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) promotes

  13. Coherent neuronal ensembles are rapidly recruited when making a look-reach decision.

    PubMed

    Wong, Yan T; Fabiszak, Margaret M; Novikov, Yevgeny; Daw, Nathaniel D; Pesaran, Bijan

    2016-02-01

    Selecting and planning actions recruits neurons across many areas of the brain, but how ensembles of neurons work together to make decisions is unknown. Temporally coherent neural activity may provide a mechanism by which neurons coordinate their activity to make decisions. If so, neurons that are part of coherent ensembles may predict movement choices before other ensembles of neurons. We recorded neuronal activity in the lateral and medial banks of the intraparietal sulcus (IPS) of the posterior parietal cortex while monkeys made choices about where to look and reach. We decoded the activity to predict the choices. Ensembles of neurons that displayed coherent patterns of spiking activity extending across the IPS--'dual-coherent' ensembles--predicted movement choices substantially earlier than other neuronal ensembles. We propose that dual-coherent spike timing reflects interactions between groups of neurons that are important to decisions.

  14. Coherent neuronal ensembles are rapidly recruited when making a look-reach decision

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Yan T.; Fabiszak, Margaret M.; Novikov, Yevgeny; Daw, Nathaniel D.; Pesaran, Bijan

    2015-01-01

    Summary Selecting and planning actions recruits neurons across many areas of the brain but how ensembles of neurons work together to make decisions is unknown. Temporally-coherent neural activity may provide a mechanism by which neurons coordinate their activity in order to make decisions. If so, neurons that are part of coherent ensembles may predict movement choices before other ensembles of neurons. We recorded neuronal activity in the lateral and medial banks of the intraparietal sulcus (IPS) of the posterior parietal cortex, while monkeys made choices about where to look and reach and decoded the activity to predict the choices. Ensembles of neurons that displayed coherent patterns of spiking activity extending across the IPS, “dual coherent” ensembles, predicted movement choices substantially earlier than other neuronal ensembles. We propose that dual-coherent spike timing reflects interactions between groups of neurons that play an important role in how we make decisions. PMID:26752158

  15. Differences in the emergent coding properties of cortical and striatal ensembles

    PubMed Central

    Ma, L.; Hyman, J.M.; Lindsay, A.J.; Phillips, A.G.; Seamans, J.K.

    2016-01-01

    The function of a given brain region is often defined by the coding properties of its individual neurons, yet how this information is combined at the ensemble level is an equally important consideration. In the present study, multiple neurons from the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and the dorsal striatum (DS) were recorded simultaneously as rats performed different sequences of the same three actions. Sequence and lever decoding was remarkably similar on a per-neuron basis in the two regions. At the ensemble level, sequence-specific representations in the DS appeared synchronously but transiently along with the representation of lever location, while these two streams of information appeared independently and asynchronously in the ACC. As a result the ACC achieved superior ensemble decoding accuracy overall. Thus, the manner in which information was combined across neurons in an ensemble determined the functional separation of the ACC and DS on this task. PMID:24974796

  16. Measuring the quality of neuronal identification in ensemble recordings

    PubMed Central

    Neymotin, Samuel A.; Lytton, William W.; Olypher, Andrey V.; Fenton, André A.

    2011-01-01

    Technological advances in electrode construction and digital signal processing now allow recording simultaneous extracellular action potential discharges from many single neurons, with the potential to revolutionize understanding of the neural codes for sensory, motor and cognitive variables. Such studies have revealed the importance of ensemble neural codes, encoding information in the dynamic relationships amongst the action potential spike trains of multiple single neurons. Although the success of this research depends on the accurate classification of extracellular action potentials to individual neurons, there are no widely used quantitative methods for assessing the quality of the classifications. Here we describe information theoretic measures of action potential waveform isolation applicable to any dataset, that have an intuitive, universal interpretation, and that are not dependent on the methods or choice of parameters for single unit isolation, and that have been validated using a dataset of simultaneous intra- and extracellular neuronal recordings from Sprague-Dawley rats. PMID:22072690

  17. A robust activity marking system for exploring active neuronal ensembles

    PubMed Central

    Sørensen, Andreas T; Cooper, Yonatan A; Baratta, Michael V; Weng, Feng-Ju; Zhang, Yuxiang; Ramamoorthi, Kartik; Fropf, Robin; LaVerriere, Emily; Xue, Jian; Young, Andrew; Schneider, Colleen; Gøtzsche, Casper René; Hemberg, Martin; Yin, Jerry CP; Maier, Steven F; Lin, Yingxi

    2016-01-01

    Understanding how the brain captures transient experience and converts it into long lasting changes in neural circuits requires the identification and investigation of the specific ensembles of neurons that are responsible for the encoding of each experience. We have developed a Robust Activity Marking (RAM) system that allows for the identification and interrogation of ensembles of neurons. The RAM system provides unprecedented high sensitivity and selectivity through the use of an optimized synthetic activity-regulated promoter that is strongly induced by neuronal activity and a modified Tet-Off system that achieves improved temporal control. Due to its compact design, RAM can be packaged into a single adeno-associated virus (AAV), providing great versatility and ease of use, including application to mice, rats, flies, and potentially many other species. Cre-dependent RAM, CRAM, allows for the study of active ensembles of a specific cell type and anatomical connectivity, further expanding the RAM system’s versatility. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.13918.001 PMID:27661450

  18. Quantitative analysis of cortical pyramidal neurons after corpus callosotomy.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Bob; Creswell, Johanna; Britt, Jonathan P; Ford, Kevin L; Bogen, Joseph E; Zaidel, Eran

    2003-07-01

    This study quantitatively explored the dendritic/spine extent of supragranular pyramidal neurons across several cortical areas in two adult male subjects who had undergone a callosotomy several decades before death. In all cortical areas, there were numerous atypical, supragranular pyramidal neurons with elongated "tap root" basilar dendrites. These atypical cells could be associated with an underlying epileptic condition and/or could represent a compensatory mechanism in response to deafferentation after callosotomy.

  19. Secretory function in subplate neurons during cortical development

    PubMed Central

    Kondo, Shinichi; Al-Hasani, Hannah; Hoerder-Suabedissen, Anna; Wang, Wei Zhi; Molnár, Zoltán

    2015-01-01

    Subplate cells are among the first generated neurons in the mammalian cerebral cortex and have been implicated in the establishment of cortical wiring. In rodents some subplate neurons persist into adulthood. Here we would like to highlight several converging findings which suggest a novel secretory function of subplate neurons during cortical development. Throughout the postnatal period in rodents, subplate neurons have highly developed rough endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and are under an ER stress condition. By comparing gene expression between subplate and layer 6, we found that several genes encoding secreted proteins are highly expressed in subplate neurons. One of these secreted proteins, neuroserpin, encoded by the serpini1 gene, is localized to the ER in subplate cells. We propose that subplate might influence cortical circuit formation through a transient secretory function. PMID:25859180

  20. Hyaluronan synthesis by developing cortical neurons in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Fowke, Tania M.; Karunasinghe, Rashika N.; Bai, Ji-Zhong; Jordan, Shawn; Gunn, Alistair J.; Dean, Justin M.

    2017-01-01

    Hyaluronan is a linear glycosaminoglycan that forms the backbone of perineuronal nets around neurons in the cerebral cortex. However, it remains controversial whether neurons are capable of independent hyaluronan synthesis. Herein, we examined the expression of hyaluronan and hyaluronan synthases (HASs) throughout cortical neuron development in vitro. Enriched cultures of cortical neurons were established from E16 rats. Neurons were collected at days in vitro (DIV) 0 (4 h), 1, 3, 7, 14, and 21 for qPCR or immunocytochemistry. In the relative absence of glia, neurons exhibited HAS1–3 mRNA at all time-points. By immunocytochemistry, puncta of HAS2–3 protein and hyaluronan were located on neuronal cell bodies, neurites, and lamellipodia/growth cones from as early as 4 h in culture. As neurons matured, hyaluronan was also detected on dendrites, filopodia, and axons, and around synapses. Percentages of hyaluronan-positive neurons increased with culture time to ~93% by DIV21, while only half of neurons at DIV21 expressed the perineuronal net marker Wisteria floribunda agglutinin. These data clearly demonstrate that neurons in vitro can independently synthesise hyaluronan throughout all maturational stages, and that hyaluronan production is not limited to neurons expressing perineuronal nets. The specific structural localisation of hyaluronan suggests potential roles in neuronal development and function. PMID:28287145

  1. Pyramidal Neurons Are Not Generalizable Building Blocks of Cortical Networks

    PubMed Central

    Luebke, Jennifer I.

    2017-01-01

    A key challenge in cortical neuroscience is to gain a comprehensive understanding of how pyramidal neuron heterogeneity across different areas and species underlies the functional specialization of individual neurons, networks, and areas. Comparative studies have been important in this endeavor, providing data relevant to the question of which of the many inherent properties of individual pyramidal neurons are necessary and sufficient for species-specific network and areal function. In this mini review, the importance of pyramidal neuron structural properties for signaling are outlined, followed by a summary of our recent work comparing the structural features of mouse (C57/BL6 strain) and rhesus monkey layer 3 (L3) pyramidal neurons in primary visual and frontal association cortices and their implications for neuronal and areal function. Based on these and other published data, L3 pyramidal neurons plausibly might be considered broadly “generalizable” from one area to another in the mouse neocortex due to their many similarities, but major differences in the properties of these neurons in diverse areas in the rhesus monkey neocortex rules this out in the primate. Further, fundamental differences in the dendritic topology of mouse and rhesus monkey pyramidal neurons highlight the implausibility of straightforward scaling and/or extrapolation from mouse to primate neurons and cortical networks. PMID:28326020

  2. Neuronal ensemble control of prosthetic devices by a human with tetraplegia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hochberg, Leigh R.; Serruya, Mijail D.; Friehs, Gerhard M.; Mukand, Jon A.; Saleh, Maryam; Caplan, Abraham H.; Branner, Almut; Chen, David; Penn, Richard D.; Donoghue, John P.

    2006-07-01

    Neuromotor prostheses (NMPs) aim to replace or restore lost motor functions in paralysed humans by routeing movement-related signals from the brain, around damaged parts of the nervous system, to external effectors. To translate preclinical results from intact animals to a clinically useful NMP, movement signals must persist in cortex after spinal cord injury and be engaged by movement intent when sensory inputs and limb movement are long absent. Furthermore, NMPs would require that intention-driven neuronal activity be converted into a control signal that enables useful tasks. Here we show initial results for a tetraplegic human (MN) using a pilot NMP. Neuronal ensemble activity recorded through a 96-microelectrode array implanted in primary motor cortex demonstrated that intended hand motion modulates cortical spiking patterns three years after spinal cord injury. Decoders were created, providing a `neural cursor' with which MN opened simulated e-mail and operated devices such as a television, even while conversing. Furthermore, MN used neural control to open and close a prosthetic hand, and perform rudimentary actions with a multi-jointed robotic arm. These early results suggest that NMPs based upon intracortical neuronal ensemble spiking activity could provide a valuable new neurotechnology to restore independence for humans with paralysis.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-07

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

  5. Cortically projecting basal forebrain parvalbumin neurons regulate cortical gamma band oscillations.

    PubMed

    Kim, Tae; Thankachan, Stephen; McKenna, James T; McNally, James M; Yang, Chun; Choi, Jee Hyun; Chen, Lichao; Kocsis, Bernat; Deisseroth, Karl; Strecker, Robert E; Basheer, Radhika; Brown, Ritchie E; McCarley, Robert W

    2015-03-17

    Cortical gamma band oscillations (GBO, 30-80 Hz, typically ∼40 Hz) are involved in higher cognitive functions such as feature binding, attention, and working memory. GBO abnormalities are a feature of several neuropsychiatric disorders associated with dysfunction of cortical fast-spiking interneurons containing the calcium-binding protein parvalbumin (PV). GBO vary according to the state of arousal, are modulated by attention, and are correlated with conscious awareness. However, the subcortical cell types underlying the state-dependent control of GBO are not well understood. Here we tested the role of one cell type in the wakefulness-promoting basal forebrain (BF) region, cortically projecting GABAergic neurons containing PV, whose virally transduced fibers we found apposed cortical PV interneurons involved in generating GBO. Optogenetic stimulation of BF PV neurons in mice preferentially increased cortical GBO power by entraining a cortical oscillator with a resonant frequency of ∼40 Hz, as revealed by analysis of both rhythmic and nonrhythmic BF PV stimulation. Selective saporin lesions of BF cholinergic neurons did not alter the enhancement of cortical GBO power induced by BF PV stimulation. Importantly, bilateral optogenetic inhibition of BF PV neurons decreased the power of the 40-Hz auditory steady-state response, a read-out of the ability of the cortex to generate GBO used in clinical studies. Our results are surprising and novel in indicating that this presumptively inhibitory BF PV input controls cortical GBO, likely by synchronizing the activity of cortical PV interneurons. BF PV neurons may represent a previously unidentified therapeutic target to treat disorders involving abnormal GBO, such as schizophrenia.

  6. Hippocampal Somatostatin Interneurons Control the Size of Neuronal Memory Ensembles.

    PubMed

    Stefanelli, Thomas; Bertollini, Cristina; Lüscher, Christian; Muller, Dominique; Mendez, Pablo

    2016-03-02

    Hippocampal neurons activated during encoding drive the recall of contextual fear memory. Little is known about how such ensembles emerge during acquisition and eventually form the cellular engram. Manipulating the activity of granule cells (GCs) of the dentate gyrus (DG), we reveal a mechanism of lateral inhibition that modulates the size of the cellular engram. GCs engage somatostatin-positive interneurons that inhibit the dendrites of surrounding GCs. Our findings reveal a microcircuit within the DG that controls the size of the cellular engram and the stability of contextual fear memory.

  7. Ensembles of Spiking Neurons with Noise Support Optimal Probabilistic Inference in a Dynamically Changing Environment

    PubMed Central

    Legenstein, Robert; Maass, Wolfgang

    2014-01-01

    It has recently been shown that networks of spiking neurons with noise can emulate simple forms of probabilistic inference through “neural sampling”, i.e., by treating spikes as samples from a probability distribution of network states that is encoded in the network. Deficiencies of the existing model are its reliance on single neurons for sampling from each random variable, and the resulting limitation in representing quickly varying probabilistic information. We show that both deficiencies can be overcome by moving to a biologically more realistic encoding of each salient random variable through the stochastic firing activity of an ensemble of neurons. The resulting model demonstrates that networks of spiking neurons with noise can easily track and carry out basic computational operations on rapidly varying probability distributions, such as the odds of getting rewarded for a specific behavior. We demonstrate the viability of this new approach towards neural coding and computation, which makes use of the inherent parallelism of generic neural circuits, by showing that this model can explain experimentally observed firing activity of cortical neurons for a variety of tasks that require rapid temporal integration of sensory information. PMID:25340749

  8. Reduced Synaptic Vesicle Recycling during Hypoxia in Cultured Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Fedorovich, Sergei; Hofmeijer, Jeannette; van Putten, Michel J. A. M.; le Feber, Joost

    2017-01-01

    Improvement of neuronal recovery in the ischemic penumbra, an area around the core of a brain infarct with some remaining perfusion, has a large potential for the development of therapy against acute ischemic stroke. However, mechanisms that lead to either recovery or secondary damage in the penumbra largely remain unclear. Recent studies in cultured networks of cortical neurons showed that failure of synaptic transmission (referred to as synaptic failure) is a critical factor in the penumbral area, but the mechanisms that lead to synaptic failure are still under investigation. Here we used a Styryl dye, FM1-43, to quantify endocytosis and exocytosis in cultures of rat cortical neurons under normoxic and hypoxic conditions. Hypoxia in cultured cortical networks rapidly depressed endocytosis and, to a lesser extent, exocytosis. These findings support electrophysiological findings that synaptic failure occurs quickly after the induction of hypoxia, and confirms that the failing processes are at least in part presynaptic. PMID:28261063

  9. Single-trial estimation of stimulus and spike-history effects on time-varying ensemble spiking activity of multiple neurons: a simulation study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shimazaki, Hideaki

    2013-12-01

    Neurons in cortical circuits exhibit coordinated spiking activity, and can produce correlated synchronous spikes during behavior and cognition. We recently developed a method for estimating the dynamics of correlated ensemble activity by combining a model of simultaneous neuronal interactions (e.g., a spin-glass model) with a state-space method (Shimazaki et al. 2012 PLoS Comput Biol 8 e1002385). This method allows us to estimate stimulus-evoked dynamics of neuronal interactions which is reproducible in repeated trials under identical experimental conditions. However, the method may not be suitable for detecting stimulus responses if the neuronal dynamics exhibits significant variability across trials. In addition, the previous model does not include effects of past spiking activity of the neurons on the current state of ensemble activity. In this study, we develop a parametric method for simultaneously estimating the stimulus and spike-history effects on the ensemble activity from single-trial data even if the neurons exhibit dynamics that is largely unrelated to these effects. For this goal, we model ensemble neuronal activity as a latent process and include the stimulus and spike-history effects as exogenous inputs to the latent process. We develop an expectation-maximization algorithm that simultaneously achieves estimation of the latent process, stimulus responses, and spike-history effects. The proposed method is useful to analyze an interaction of internal cortical states and sensory evoked activity.

  10. Cortical neurons gradually attain a post-mitotic state.

    PubMed

    Anda, Froylan Calderon de; Madabhushi, Ram; Rei, Damien; Meng, Jia; Gräff, Johannes; Durak, Omer; Meletis, Konstantinos; Richter, Melanie; Schwanke, Birgit; Mungenast, Alison; Tsai, Li-Huei

    2016-09-01

    Once generated, neurons are thought to permanently exit the cell cycle and become irreversibly differentiated. However, neither the precise point at which this post-mitotic state is attained nor the extent of its irreversibility is clearly defined. Here we report that newly born neurons from the upper layers of the mouse cortex, despite initiating axon and dendrite elongation, continue to drive gene expression from the neural progenitor tubulin α1 promoter (Tα1p). These observations suggest an ambiguous post-mitotic neuronal state. Whole transcriptome analysis of sorted upper cortical neurons further revealed that neurons continue to express genes related to cell cycle progression long after mitotic exit until at least post-natal day 3 (P3). These genes are however down-regulated thereafter, associated with a concomitant up-regulation of tumor suppressors at P5. Interestingly, newly born neurons located in the cortical plate (CP) at embryonic day 18-19 (E18-E19) and P3 challenged with calcium influx are found in S/G2/M phases of the cell cycle, and still able to undergo division at E18-E19 but not at P3. At P5 however, calcium influx becomes neurotoxic and leads instead to neuronal loss. Our data delineate an unexpected flexibility of cell cycle control in early born neurons, and describe how neurons transit to a post-mitotic state.

  11. Electrical Interactions Between Mammalian Cortical Neurons

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-09-28

    nuclei. Kynurenic acid and Dtf-glutamylglycine (broad-spectrum EAA antagonists) reduced EPSPs in supraoptic neurons, while N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA...antagonists had relatively little effect on EPSPs . Other studies showed that kynurenic acid had dose-dependent effects on EPSPs of at least two types of...The primary method has been to examine the effects of EAA antagonists on EPSPs of hypothalamic neurons. Finally, another objective is to ascertain

  12. Early phenotype expression of cortical neurons: Evidence that a subclass of migrating neurons have callosal axons

    SciTech Connect

    Schwartz, M.L.; Rakic, P.; Goldman-Rakic, P.S. )

    1991-02-15

    The use of ({sup 3}H)thymidine labeling in combination with various axonal transport tracers has revealed that a subset of migrating neurons in the fetal monkey cerebrum issue axons to the opposite cerebral hemisphere while still migrating to their final positions in the cortical plate. Other cortical neurons with the same birthdate (i.e., that underwent their last round of DNA synthesis on the same day) are not retrogradely labeled by tracer injections of the opposite hemisphere. These findings suggest that the cardinal distinction between projection and local circuit neurons may be specified in postmitotic neurons before they acquire their final positions in the cortex.

  13. Control of cortical neuronal migration by glutamate and GABA.

    PubMed

    Luhmann, Heiko J; Fukuda, A; Kilb, W

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal migration in the cortex is controlled by the paracrine action of the classical neurotransmitters glutamate and GABA. Glutamate controls radial migration of pyramidal neurons by acting primarily on NMDA receptors and regulates tangential migration of inhibitory interneurons by activating non-NMDA and NMDA receptors. GABA, acting on ionotropic GABAA-rho and GABAA receptors, has a dichotomic action on radially migrating neurons by acting as a GO signal in lower layers and as a STOP signal in upper cortical plate (CP), respectively. Metabotropic GABAB receptors promote radial migration into the CP and tangential migration of interneurons. Besides GABA, the endogenous GABAergic agonist taurine is a relevant agonist controlling radial migration. To a smaller extent glycine receptor activation can also influence radial and tangential migration. Activation of glutamate and GABA receptors causes increases in intracellular Ca(2+) transients, which promote neuronal migration by acting on the cytoskeleton. Pharmacological or genetic manipulation of glutamate or GABA receptors during early corticogenesis induce heterotopic cell clusters in upper layers and loss of cortical lamination, i.e., neuronal migration disorders which can be associated with neurological or neuropsychiatric diseases. The pivotal role of NMDA and ionotropic GABA receptors in cortical neuronal migration is of major clinical relevance, since a number of drugs acting on these receptors (e.g., anti-epileptics, anesthetics, alcohol) may disturb the normal migration pattern when present during early corticogenesis.

  14. Control of cortical neuronal migration by glutamate and GABA

    PubMed Central

    Luhmann, Heiko J.; Fukuda, A.; Kilb, W.

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal migration in the cortex is controlled by the paracrine action of the classical neurotransmitters glutamate and GABA. Glutamate controls radial migration of pyramidal neurons by acting primarily on NMDA receptors and regulates tangential migration of inhibitory interneurons by activating non-NMDA and NMDA receptors. GABA, acting on ionotropic GABAA-rho and GABAA receptors, has a dichotomic action on radially migrating neurons by acting as a GO signal in lower layers and as a STOP signal in upper cortical plate (CP), respectively. Metabotropic GABAB receptors promote radial migration into the CP and tangential migration of interneurons. Besides GABA, the endogenous GABAergic agonist taurine is a relevant agonist controlling radial migration. To a smaller extent glycine receptor activation can also influence radial and tangential migration. Activation of glutamate and GABA receptors causes increases in intracellular Ca2+ transients, which promote neuronal migration by acting on the cytoskeleton. Pharmacological or genetic manipulation of glutamate or GABA receptors during early corticogenesis induce heterotopic cell clusters in upper layers and loss of cortical lamination, i.e., neuronal migration disorders which can be associated with neurological or neuropsychiatric diseases. The pivotal role of NMDA and ionotropic GABA receptors in cortical neuronal migration is of major clinical relevance, since a number of drugs acting on these receptors (e.g., anti-epileptics, anesthetics, alcohol) may disturb the normal migration pattern when present during early corticogenesis. PMID:25688185

  15. Visual experience without lines: effect on developing cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Pettigrew, J D; Freeman, R D

    1973-11-09

    Kittens were reared in a planetarium-like visual environment that lacked straight line contours. Cortical neurons were subsequently highly sensitive to spots of light but not to straight lines, in marked contrast to those from a normal cat. If linear contour processing is an innate function it appears to be subject to substantial modification by early visual experience.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-19

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

  17. Spatial Stream Segregation by Auditory Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Bremen, Peter

    2013-01-01

    In a complex auditory scene, a “cocktail party” for example, listeners can disentangle multiple competing sequences of sounds. A recent psychophysical study in our laboratory demonstrated a robust spatial component of stream segregation showing ∼8° acuity. Here, we recorded single- and multiple-neuron responses from the primary auditory cortex of anesthetized cats while presenting interleaved sound sequences that human listeners would experience as segregated streams. Sequences of broadband sounds alternated between pairs of locations. Neurons synchronized preferentially to sounds from one or the other location, thereby segregating competing sound sequences. Neurons favoring one source location or the other tended to aggregate within the cortex, suggestive of modular organization. The spatial acuity of stream segregation was as narrow as ∼10°, markedly sharper than the broad spatial tuning for single sources that is well known in the literature. Spatial sensitivity was sharpest among neurons having high characteristic frequencies. Neural stream segregation was predicted well by a parameter-free model that incorporated single-source spatial sensitivity and a measured forward-suppression term. We found that the forward suppression was not due to post discharge adaptation in the cortex and, therefore, must have arisen in the subcortical pathway or at the level of thalamocortical synapses. A linear-classifier analysis of single-neuron responses to rhythmic stimuli like those used in our psychophysical study yielded thresholds overlapping those of human listeners. Overall, the results indicate that the ascending auditory system does the work of segregating auditory streams, bringing them to discrete modules in the cortex for selection by top-down processes. PMID:23825404

  18. Tunable Neuromimetic Integrated System for Emulating Cortical Neuron Models

    PubMed Central

    Grassia, Filippo; Buhry, Laure; Lévi, Timothée; Tomas, Jean; Destexhe, Alain; Saïghi, Sylvain

    2011-01-01

    Nowadays, many software solutions are currently available for simulating neuron models. Less conventional than software-based systems, hardware-based solutions generally combine digital and analog forms of computation. In previous work, we designed several neuromimetic chips, including the Galway chip that we used for this paper. These silicon neurons are based on the Hodgkin–Huxley formalism and they are optimized for reproducing a large variety of neuron behaviors thanks to tunable parameters. Due to process variation and device mismatch in analog chips, we use a full-custom fitting method in voltage-clamp mode to tune our neuromimetic integrated circuits. By comparing them with experimental electrophysiological data of these cells, we show that the circuits can reproduce the main firing features of cortical cell types. In this paper, we present the experimental measurements of our system which mimic the four most prominent biological cells: fast spiking, regular spiking, intrinsically bursting, and low-threshold spiking neurons into analog neuromimetic integrated circuit dedicated to cortical neuron simulations. This hardware and software platform will allow to improve the hybrid technique, also called “dynamic-clamp,” that consists of connecting artificial and biological neurons to study the function of neuronal circuits. PMID:22163213

  19. 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.

  20. Synchronized dynamics of cortical neurons with time-delay feedback.

    PubMed

    Landsman, Alexandra S; Schwartz, Ira B

    2007-07-05

    The dynamics of three mutually coupled cortical neurons with time delays in the coupling are explored numerically and analytically. The neurons are coupled in a line, with the middle neuron sending a somewhat stronger projection to the outer neurons than the feedback it receives, to model for instance the relay of a signal from primary to higher cortical areas. For a given coupling architecture, the delays introduce correlations in the time series at the time-scale of the delay. It was found that the middle neuron leads the outer ones by the delay time, while the outer neurons are synchronized with zero lag times. Synchronization is found to be highly dependent on the synaptic time constant, with faster synapses increasing both the degree of synchronization and the firing rate. Analysis shows that pre-synaptic input during the inter-spike interval stabilizes the synchronous state, even for arbitrarily weak coupling, and independent of the initial phase. The finding may be of significance to synchronization of large groups of cells in the cortex that are spatially distanced from each other.

  1. Spontaneous cortical activity in awake monkeys composed of neuronal avalanches.

    PubMed

    Petermann, Thomas; Thiagarajan, Tara C; Lebedev, Mikhail A; Nicolelis, Miguel A L; Chialvo, Dante R; Plenz, Dietmar

    2009-09-15

    Spontaneous neuronal activity is an important property of the cerebral cortex but its spatiotemporal organization and dynamical framework remain poorly understood. Studies in reduced systems--tissue cultures, acute slices, and anesthetized rats--show that spontaneous activity forms characteristic clusters in space and time, called neuronal avalanches. Modeling studies suggest that networks with this property are poised at a critical state that optimizes input processing, information storage, and transfer, but the relevance of avalanches for fully functional cerebral systems has been controversial. Here we show that ongoing cortical synchronization in awake rhesus monkeys carries the signature of neuronal avalanches. Negative LFP deflections (nLFPs) correlate with neuronal spiking and increase in amplitude with increases in local population spike rate and synchrony. These nLFPs form neuronal avalanches that are scale-invariant in space and time and with respect to the threshold of nLFP detection. This dimension, threshold invariance, describes a fractal organization: smaller nLFPs are embedded in clusters of larger ones without destroying the spatial and temporal scale-invariance of the dynamics. These findings suggest an organization of ongoing cortical synchronization that is scale-invariant in its three fundamental dimensions--time, space, and local neuronal group size. Such scale-invariance has ontogenetic and phylogenetic implications because it allows large increases in network capacity without a fundamental reorganization of the system.

  2. Morphology and ontogeny of rat perirhinal cortical neurons.

    PubMed

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

    2007-12-10

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

  3. Direct control of paralysed muscles by cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Moritz, Chet T; Perlmutter, Steve I; Fetz, Eberhard E

    2008-12-04

    A potential treatment for paralysis resulting from spinal cord injury is to route control signals from the brain around the injury by artificial connections. Such signals could then control electrical stimulation of muscles, thereby restoring volitional movement to paralysed limbs. In previously separate experiments, activity of motor cortex neurons related to actual or imagined movements has been used to control computer cursors and robotic arms, and paralysed muscles have been activated by functional electrical stimulation. Here we show that Macaca nemestrina monkeys can directly control stimulation of muscles using the activity of neurons in the motor cortex, thereby restoring goal-directed movements to a transiently paralysed arm. Moreover, neurons could control functional stimulation equally well regardless of any previous association to movement, a finding that considerably expands the source of control signals for brain-machine interfaces. Monkeys learned to use these artificial connections from cortical cells to muscles to generate bidirectional wrist torques, and controlled multiple neuron-muscle pairs simultaneously. Such direct transforms from cortical activity to muscle stimulation could be implemented by autonomous electronic circuitry, creating a relatively natural neuroprosthesis. These results are the first demonstration that direct artificial connections between cortical cells and muscles can compensate for interrupted physiological pathways and restore volitional control of movement to paralysed limbs.

  4. Direct control of paralyzed muscles by cortical neurons

    PubMed Central

    Moritz, Chet T.; Perlmutter, Steve I.; Fetz, Eberhard E.

    2011-01-01

    A potential treatment for paralysis resulting from spinal cord injury is to route control signals from the brain around the injury via artificial connections. Such signals could then control electrical stimulation of muscles, thereby restoring volitional movement to paralyzed limbs1–3. In previously separate experiments, activity of motor cortex neurons related to actual or imagined movements has been used to control computer cursors and robotic arms4–10, and paralyzed muscles have been activated by functional electrical stimulation (FES)11–13. Here we show that monkeys can directly control stimulation of muscles using the activity of neurons in motor cortex, thereby restoring goal-directed movements to a transiently paralyzed arm. Moreover, neurons could control functional stimulation equally well regardless of any prior association to movement, a finding that significantly expands the source of control signals for brain-machine interfaces. Monkeys learned to utilize these artificial connections from cortical cells to muscles to generate bidirectional wrist torques, and controlled multiple neuron-muscle pairs simultaneously. Such direct transforms from cortical activity to muscle stimulation could be implemented by autonomous electronic circuitry, creating a relatively natural neuroprosthesis. These results are the first demonstration that direct artificial connections between cortical cells and muscles can compensate for interrupted physiological pathways and restore volitional control of movement to paralyzed limbs. PMID:18923392

  5. Inferring pathological states in cortical neuron microcircuits.

    PubMed

    Rydzewski, Jakub; Nowak, Wieslaw; Nicosia, Giuseppe

    2015-12-07

    The brain activity is to a large extent determined by states of neural cortex microcircuits. Unfortunately, accuracy of results from neural circuits׳ mathematical models is often biased by the presence of uncertainties in underlying experimental data. Moreover, due to problems with uncertainties identification in a multidimensional parameters space, it is almost impossible to classify states of the neural cortex, which correspond to a particular set of the parameters. Here, we develop a complete methodology for determining uncertainties and the novel protocol for classifying all states in any neuroinformatic model. Further, we test this protocol on the mathematical, nonlinear model of such a microcircuit developed by Giugliano et al. (2008) and applied in the experimental data analysis of Huntington׳s disease. Up to now, the link between parameter domains in the mathematical model of Huntington׳s disease and the pathological states in cortical microcircuits has remained unclear. In this paper we precisely identify all the uncertainties, the most crucial input parameters and domains that drive the system into an unhealthy state. The scheme proposed here is general and can be easily applied to other mathematical models of biological phenomena.

  6. Changes in Appetitive Associative Strength Modulates Nucleus Accumbens, But Not Orbitofrontal Cortex Neuronal Ensemble Excitability.

    PubMed

    Ziminski, Joseph J; Hessler, Sabine; Margetts-Smith, Gabriella; Sieburg, Meike C; Crombag, Hans S; Koya, Eisuke

    2017-03-22

    Cues that predict the availability of food rewards influence motivational states and elicit food-seeking behaviors. If a cue no longer predicts food availability, then animals may adapt accordingly by inhibiting food-seeking responses. Sparsely activated sets of neurons, coined "neuronal ensembles," have been shown to encode the strength of reward-cue associations. Although alterations in intrinsic excitability have been shown to underlie many learning and memory processes, little is known about these properties specifically on cue-activated neuronal ensembles. We examined the activation patterns of cue-activated orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) and nucleus accumbens (NAc) shell ensembles using wild-type and Fos-GFP mice, which express green fluorescent protein (GFP) in activated neurons, after appetitive conditioning with sucrose and extinction learning. We also investigated the neuronal excitability of recently activated, GFP+ neurons in these brain areas using whole-cell electrophysiology in brain slices. Exposure to a sucrose cue elicited activation of neurons in both the NAc shell and OFC. In the NAc shell, but not the OFC, these activated GFP+ neurons were more excitable than surrounding GFP- neurons. After extinction, the number of neurons activated in both areas was reduced and activated ensembles in neither area exhibited altered excitability. These data suggest that learning-induced alterations in the intrinsic excitability of neuronal ensembles is regulated dynamically across different brain areas. Furthermore, we show that changes in associative strength modulate the excitability profile of activated ensembles in the NAc shell.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Sparsely distributed sets of neurons called "neuronal ensembles" encode learned associations about food and cues predictive of its availability. Widespread changes in neuronal excitability have been observed in limbic brain areas after associative learning, but little is known about the excitability changes that

  7. Cortical neurons exposed to glutamate rapidly leak preloaded chromium 51

    SciTech Connect

    Maulucci-Gedde, M.; Choi, D.W.

    1987-05-01

    The acute toxic effects of excess glutamate exposure on cortical neurons in culture was followed using a novel adaptation of the /sup 51/Cr efflux assay. Although the acute, sodium-dependent phase of glutamate neurotoxicity may contribute to several acute disease settings, including sustained seizures and stroke, functional aspects of the phenomenon have not been previously studied. We report here that the earliest morphologic sign of glutamate neurotoxicity, neuronal swelling, is accompanied by a large efflux of complexed /sup 51/Cr from preloaded neurons in the first hour after exposure, and that this efflux is detectable as early as 15 min after the onset of glutamate exposure. We suggest that this pathological burst of /sup 51/Cr may result from glutamate-induced leakiness of neuronal cell membranes.

  8. Potentiated necrosis of cultured cortical neurons by neurotrophins.

    PubMed

    Koh, J Y; Gwag, B J; Lobner, D; Choi, D W

    1995-04-28

    The effects of neurotrophins on several forms of neuronal degeneration in murine cortical cell cultures were examined. Consistent with other studies, brain-derived neurotrophic factor, neurotrophin-3, and neurotrophin-4/5 all attenuated the apoptotic death induced by serum deprivation or exposure to the calcium channel antagonist nimodipine. Unexpectedly, however, 24-hour pretreatment with these same neurotrophins markedly potentiated the necrotic death induced by exposure to oxygen-glucose deprivation or N-methyl-D-aspartate. Thus, certain neurotrophins may have opposing effects on different types of death in the same neurons.

  9. Rich club neurons dominate Information Transfer in local cortical networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nigam, Sunny; Shimono, Masanori; Sporns, Olaf; Beggs, John

    2015-03-01

    The performance of complex networks depends on how they route their traffic. It is unknown how information is transferred in local cortical networks of hundreds of closely-spaced neurons. To address this, it is necessary to record simultaneously from hundreds of neurons at a spacing that matches typical axonal connection distances, and at a temporal resolution that matches synaptic delays. We used a 512 electrode array (60 μm spacing) to record spontaneous activity at 20 kHz, simultaneously from up to 700 neurons in slice cultures of mouse somatosensory cortex for 1 hr at a time. We used transfer entropy to quantify directed information transfer (IT) between pairs of neurons. We found an approximately lognormal distribution of firing rates as reported in in-vivo. Pairwise information transfer strengths also were nearly lognormally distributed, similar to synaptic strengths. 20% of the neurons accounted for 70% of the total IT coming into, and going out of the network and were defined as rich nodes. These rich nodes were more densely and strongly connected to each other expected by chance, forming a rich club. This highly uneven distribution of IT has implications for the efficiency and robustness of local cortical networks, and gives clues to the plastic processes that shape them. JSPS.

  10. Cortical neuronal activity does not regulate sleep homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Qiu, M-H; Chen, M C; Lu, J

    2015-06-25

    The neural substrate of sleep homeostasis is unclear, but both cortical and subcortical structures are thought to be involved in sleep regulation. To test whether prior neuronal activity in the cortex or in subcortical regions drives sleep rebound, we systemically administered atropine (100mg/kg) to rats, producing a dissociated state with slow-wave cortical electroencephalogram (EEG) but waking behavior (e.g. locomotion). Atropine injections during the light period produced 6h of slow-wave cortical EEG but also subcortical arousal. Afterward, rats showed a significant increase in non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep, compared to the same period on a baseline day. Consistent with the behavioral and cortical EEG state produced by systemic atropine, c-Fos expression was low in the cortex but high in multiple subcortical arousal systems. These data suggest that subcortical arousal and behavior are sufficient to drive sleep homeostasis, while a sleep-like pattern of cortical activity is not sufficient to satisfy sleep homeostasis.

  11. Sensory experience regulates cortical inhibition by inducing IGF1 in VIP neurons.

    PubMed

    Mardinly, A R; Spiegel, I; Patrizi, A; Centofante, E; Bazinet, J E; Tzeng, C P; Mandel-Brehm, C; Harmin, D A; Adesnik, H; Fagiolini, M; Greenberg, M E

    2016-03-17

    Inhibitory neurons regulate the adaptation of neural circuits to sensory experience, but the molecular mechanisms by which experience controls the connectivity between different types of inhibitory neuron to regulate cortical plasticity are largely unknown. Here we show that exposure of dark-housed mice to light induces a gene program in cortical vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP)-expressing neurons that is markedly distinct from that induced in excitatory neurons and other subtypes of inhibitory neuron. We identify Igf1 as one of several activity-regulated genes that are specific to VIP neurons, and demonstrate that IGF1 functions cell-autonomously in VIP neurons to increase inhibitory synaptic input onto these neurons. Our findings further suggest that in cortical VIP neurons, experience-dependent gene transcription regulates visual acuity by activating the expression of IGF1, thus promoting the inhibition of disinhibitory neurons and affecting inhibition onto cortical pyramidal neurons.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-01

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

  13. Mutual information and redundancy in spontaneous communication between cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Szczepanski, J; Arnold, M; Wajnryb, E; Amigó, J M; Sanchez-Vives, M V

    2011-03-01

    An important question in neural information processing is how neurons cooperate to transmit information. To study this question, we resort to the concept of redundancy in the information transmitted by a group of neurons and, at the same time, we introduce a novel concept for measuring cooperation between pairs of neurons called relative mutual information (RMI). Specifically, we studied these two parameters for spike trains generated by neighboring neurons from the primary visual cortex in the awake, freely moving rat. The spike trains studied here were spontaneously generated in the cortical network, in the absence of visual stimulation. Under these conditions, our analysis revealed that while the value of RMI oscillated slightly around an average value, the redundancy exhibited a behavior characterized by a higher variability. We conjecture that this combination of approximately constant RMI and greater variable redundancy makes information transmission more resistant to noise disturbances. Furthermore, the redundancy values suggest that neurons can cooperate in a flexible way during information transmission. This mostly occurs via a leading neuron with higher transmission rate or, less frequently, through the information rate of the whole group being higher than the sum of the individual information rates-in other words in a synergetic manner. The proposed method applies not only to the stationary, but also to locally stationary neural signals.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-02-20

    The locus coeruleus (LC), the main source of brain noradrenalin (NA), modulates cortical activity, cerebral blood flow (CBF), glucose metabolism, and blood-brain barrier permeability. However, the role of the LC-NA system in the regulation of cortical CBF has remained elusive. This rat study shows that similar proportions (∼20%) of cortical pyramidal cells and GABA interneurons are contacted by LC-NA afferents on their cell soma or proximal dendrites. LC stimulation induced ipsilateral activation (c-Fos upregulation) of pyramidal cells and of a larger proportion (>36%) of interneurons that colocalize parvalbumin, somatostatin, or nitric oxide synthase compared with pyramidal cells expressing cyclooxygenase-2 (22%, p < 0.05) or vasoactive intestinal polypeptide-containing interneurons (16%, p < 0.01). Concurrently, LC stimulation elicited larger ipsilateral compared with contralateral increases in cortical CBF (52 vs 31%, p < 0.01). These CBF responses were almost abolished (-70%, p < 0.001) by cortical NA denervation with DSP-4 [N-(2-chloroethyl)-N-ethyl-2-bromobenzylamine hydrochloride] and were significantly reduced by α- and β-adrenoceptor antagonists (-40%, p < 0.001 and -30%, p < 0.05, respectively). Blockade of glutamatergic or GABAergic neurotransmission with NMDA or GABA(A) receptor antagonists potently reduced the LC-induced hyperemic response (-56%, p < 0.001 or -47%, p < 0.05). Moreover, inhibition of astroglial metabolism (-35%, p < 0.01), vasoactive epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs; -60%, p < 0.001) synthesis, large-conductance, calcium-operated (BK, -52%, p < 0.05), and inward-rectifier (Kir, -40%, p < 0.05) K+ channels primarily impaired the hyperemic response. The data demonstrate that LC stimulation recruits a broad network of cortical excitatory and inhibitory neurons resulting in increased cortical activity and that K+ fluxes and EET signaling mediate a large part of the hemodynamic response.

  15. Dense Neuron Clustering Explains Connectivity Statistics in Cortical Microcircuits

    PubMed Central

    Klinshov, Vladimir V.; Teramae, Jun-nosuke; Nekorkin, Vladimir I.; Fukai, Tomoki

    2014-01-01

    Local cortical circuits appear highly non-random, but the underlying connectivity rule remains elusive. Here, we analyze experimental data observed in layer 5 of rat neocortex and suggest a model for connectivity from which emerge essential observed non-random features of both wiring and weighting. These features include lognormal distributions of synaptic connection strength, anatomical clustering, and strong correlations between clustering and connection strength. Our model predicts that cortical microcircuits contain large groups of densely connected neurons which we call clusters. We show that such a cluster contains about one fifth of all excitatory neurons of a circuit which are very densely connected with stronger than average synapses. We demonstrate that such clustering plays an important role in the network dynamics, namely, it creates bistable neural spiking in small cortical circuits. Furthermore, introducing local clustering in large-scale networks leads to the emergence of various patterns of persistent local activity in an ongoing network activity. Thus, our results may bridge a gap between anatomical structure and persistent activity observed during working memory and other cognitive processes. PMID:24732632

  16. Spiking neural networks for cortical neuronal spike train decoding.

    PubMed

    Fang, Huijuan; Wang, Yongji; He, Jiping

    2010-04-01

    Recent investigation of cortical coding and computation indicates that temporal coding is probably a more biologically plausible scheme used by neurons than the rate coding used commonly in most published work. We propose and demonstrate in this letter that spiking neural networks (SNN), consisting of spiking neurons that propagate information by the timing of spikes, are a better alternative to the coding scheme based on spike frequency (histogram) alone. The SNN model analyzes cortical neural spike trains directly without losing temporal information for generating more reliable motor command for cortically controlled prosthetics. In this letter, we compared the temporal pattern classification result from the SNN approach with results generated from firing-rate-based approaches: conventional artificial neural networks, support vector machines, and linear regression. The results show that the SNN algorithm can achieve higher classification accuracy and identify the spiking activity related to movement control earlier than the other methods. Both are desirable characteristics for fast neural information processing and reliable control command pattern recognition for neuroprosthetic applications.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    Subdural cortical stimulation (SuCS) is an appealing method in the treatment of neurological disorders, and computational modeling studies of SuCS have been applied to determine the optimal design for electrotherapy. To achieve a better understanding of computational modeling on the stimulation effects of SuCS, the influence of anisotropic white matter conductivity on the activation of cortical neurons was investigated in a realistic head model. In this paper, we constructed pyramidal neuronal models (layers 3 and 5) that showed primary excitation of the corticospinal tract, and an anatomically realistic head model reflecting complex brain geometry. The anisotropic information was acquired from diffusion tensor magnetic resonance imaging (DT-MRI) and then applied to the white matter at various ratios of anisotropic conductivity. First, we compared the isotropic and anisotropic models; compared to the isotropic model, the anisotropic model showed that neurons were activated in the deeper bank during cathodal stimulation and in the wider crown during anodal stimulation. Second, several popular anisotropic principles were adapted to investigate the effects of variations in anisotropic information. We observed that excitation thresholds varied with anisotropic principles, especially with anodal stimulation. Overall, incorporating anisotropic conductivity into the anatomically realistic head model is critical for accurate estimation of neuronal responses; however, caution should be used in the selection of anisotropic information. PMID:26057524

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

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, Adam

    2013-01-01

    A computational model of a self-structuring neuronal net is presented in which repetitively applied pattern sets induce the formation of cortical columns and microcircuits which decode distinct patterns after a learning phase. In a case study, it is demonstrated how specific neurons in a feature classifier layer become orientation selective if they receive bar patterns of different slopes from an input layer. The input layer is mapped and intertwined by self-evolving neuronal microcircuits to the feature classifier layer. In this topical overview, several models are discussed which indicate that the net formation converges in its functionality to a mathematical transform which maps the input pattern space to a feature representing output space. The self-learning of the mathematical transform is discussed and its implications are interpreted. Model assumptions are deduced which serve as a guide to apply model derived repetitive stimuli pattern sets to in vitro cultures of neuron ensembles to condition them to learn and execute a mathematical transform. PMID:24369455

  19. Modeling the formation process of grouping stimuli sets through cortical columns and microcircuits to feature neurons.

    PubMed

    Klefenz, Frank; Williamson, Adam

    2013-01-01

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

  20. Using c-fos to study neuronal ensembles in corticostriatal circuitry of addiction

    PubMed Central

    Cruz, Fabio C.; Rubio, F. Javier; Hope, Bruce T.

    2014-01-01

    Learned associations between drugs and environment play an important role in addiction and are thought to be encoded within specific patterns of sparsely distributed neurons called neuronal ensembles. This hypothesis is supported by correlational data from in vivo electrophysiology and cellular imaging studies in relapse models in rodents. In particular, cellular imaging with the immediate early gene c-fos and its protein product Fos has been used to identify sparsely distributed neurons that were strongly activated during conditioned drug behaviors such as drug self-administration and context- and cue-induced reinstatement of drug seeking. Here we review how Fos and the c-fos promoter have been employed to demonstrate causal roles for Fos-expressing neuronal ensembles in prefrontal cortex and nucleus accumbens in conditioned drug behaviors. This work has allowed identification of unique molecular and electrophysiological alterations within Fos-expressing neuronal ensembles that may contribute to the development and expression of learned associations in addiction. PMID:25446457

  1. Self-organization and neuronal avalanches in networks of dissociated cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Pasquale, V; Massobrio, P; Bologna, L L; Chiappalone, M; Martinoia, S

    2008-06-02

    Dissociated cortical neurons from rat embryos cultured onto micro-electrode arrays exhibit characteristic patterns of electrophysiological activity, ranging from isolated spikes in the first days of development to highly synchronized bursts after 3-4 weeks in vitro. In this work we analyzed these features by considering the approach proposed by the self-organized criticality theory: we found that networks of dissociated cortical neurons also generate spontaneous events of spreading activity, previously observed in cortical slices, in the form of neuronal avalanches. Choosing an appropriate time scale of observation to detect such neuronal avalanches, we studied the dynamics by considering the spontaneous activity during acute recordings in mature cultures and following the development of the network. We observed different behaviors, i.e. sub-critical, critical or super-critical distributions of avalanche sizes and durations, depending on both the age and the development of cultures. In order to clarify this variability, neuronal avalanches were correlated with other statistical parameters describing the global activity of the network. Criticality was found in correspondence to medium synchronization among bursts and high ratio between bursting and spiking activity. Then, the action of specific drugs affecting global bursting dynamics (i.e. acetylcholine and bicuculline) was investigated to confirm the correlation between criticality and regulated balance between synchronization and variability in the bursting activity. Finally, a computational model of neuronal network was developed in order to interpret the experimental results and understand which parameters (e.g. connectivity, excitability) influence the distribution of avalanches. In summary, cortical neurons preserve their capability to self-organize in an effective network even when dissociated and cultured in vitro. The distribution of avalanche features seems to be critical in those cultures displaying

  2. Neurotoxicity of heroin-cocaine combinations in rat cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Cunha-Oliveira, Teresa; Rego, A Cristina; Garrido, Jorge; Borges, Fernanda; Macedo, Tice; Oliveira, Catarina R

    2010-09-30

    Cocaine and heroin are frequently co-abused by humans, in a combination known as speedball. Recently, chemical interactions between heroin (Her) or its metabolite morphine (Mor) and cocaine (Coc) were described, resulting in the formation of strong adducts. In this work, we evaluated whether combinations of Coc and Her affect the neurotoxicity of these drugs, using rat cortical neurons incubated with Coc, Her, Her followed by Coc (Her+Coc) and Her plus Coc (Her:Coc, 1:1). Neurons exposed to Her, Her+Coc and Her:Coc exhibited a decrease in cell viability, which was more pronounced in neurons exposed to Her and Her+Coc, in comparison with neurons exposed to the mixture (Her:Coc). Cells exposed to the mixture showed increased intracellular calcium and mitochondrial dysfunction, as determined by a decrease in intracellular ATP levels and in mitochondrial membrane potential, displaying both apoptotic and necrotic characteristics. Conversely, a major increase in cytochrome c release, caspase 3-dependent apoptosis, and decreased metabolic neuronal viability were observed upon sequential exposure to Her and Coc. The data show that drug combinations potentiate cortical neurotoxicity and that the mode of co-exposure changes cellular death pathways activated by the drugs, strongly suggesting that chemical interactions occurring in Her:Coc, such as adduct formation, shift cell death mechanisms towards necrosis. Since impairment of the prefrontal cortex is involved in the loss of impulse control observed in drug addicts, the data presented here may contribute to explain the increase in treatment failure observed in speedball abusers.

  3. 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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1998-01-01

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

  5. Multilaminar networks of cortical neurons integrate common inputs from sensory thalamus.

    PubMed

    Morgenstern, Nicolás A; Bourg, Jacques; Petreanu, Leopoldo

    2016-08-01

    Neurons in the thalamorecipient layers of sensory cortices integrate thalamic and recurrent cortical input. Cortical neurons form fine-scale, functionally cotuned networks, but whether interconnected cortical neurons within a column process common thalamocortical inputs is unknown. We tested how local and thalamocortical connectivity relate to each other by analyzing cofluctuations of evoked responses in cortical neurons after photostimulation of thalamocortical axons. We found that connected pairs of pyramidal neurons in layer (L) 4 of mouse visual cortex share more inputs from the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus than nonconnected pairs. Vertically aligned connected pairs of L4 and L2/3 neurons were also preferentially contacted by the same thalamocortical axons. Our results provide a circuit mechanism for the observed amplification of sensory responses by L4 circuits. They also show that sensory information is concurrently processed in L4 and L2/3 by columnar networks of interconnected neurons contacted by the same thalamocortical axons.

  6. Inhibition of propofol on single neuron and neuronal ensemble activity in prefrontal cortex of rats during working memory task.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xinyu; Tian, Yu; Wang, Guolin; Tian, Xin

    2014-08-15

    Working memory (WM) refers to the temporary storage and manipulation of information necessary for performance of complex cognitive tasks. There is a growing interest in whether and how propofol anesthesia inhibits WM function. The aim of this study is to investigate the possible inhibition mechanism of propofol anesthesia from the view of single neuron and neuronal ensemble activities. Adult SD rats were randomly divided into two groups: propofol group (0.9 mg kg(-1)min(-1), 2h via a tail vein catheter) and control group. All the rats were tested for working memory performances in a Y-maze-rewarded alternation task (a task of delayed non-matched-to-sample) at 24, 48, 72 h after propofol anesthesia, and the behavior results of WM tasks were recorded at the same time. Spatio-temporal trains of action potentials were obtained from the original signals. Single neuron activity was characterized by peri-event time histograms analysis and neuron ensemble activities were characterized by Granger causality to describe the interactions within the neuron ensemble. The results show that: comparing with the control group, the percentage of neurons excited and related to WM was significantly decreased (p<0.01 in 24h, p<0.05 in 48 h); the interactions within neuron ensemble were significantly weakened (p<0.01 in 24h, p<0.05 in 48 h), whereas no significant difference in 72 h (p>0.05), which were consistent with the behavior results. These findings could lead to improved understanding of the mechanism of anesthesia inhibition on WM functions from the view of single neuron activity and neuron ensemble interactions.

  7. Transcranial electric stimulation entrains cortical neuronal populations in rats

    PubMed Central

    Ozen, Simal; Sirota, Anton; Belluscio, Mariano A.; Anastassiou, Costas A.; Stark, Eran; Koch, Christof; Buzsáki, György

    2010-01-01

    Low intensity electric fields have been suggested to affect the ongoing neuronal activity in vitro and in human studies. However, the physiological mechanism of how weak electrical fields affect and interact with intact brain activity is not well understood. We performed in vivo extracellular and intracellular recordings from the neocortex and hippocampus of anaesthetized rats and extracellular recordings in behaving rats. Electric fields were generated by sinusoid patterns at slow frequency (0.8, 1.25 or 1.7 Hz) via electrodes placed on the surface of the skull or the dura. Transcranial electric stimulation (TES) reliably entrained neurons in widespread cortical areas, including the hippocampus. The percentage of TES phase-locked neurons increased with stimulus intensity and depended on the behavioral state of the animal. TES-induced voltage gradient, as low as 1 mV/mm at the recording sites, was sufficient to phase-bias neuronal spiking. Intracellular recordings showed that both spiking and subthreshold activity were under the combined influence of TES forced fields and network activity. We suggest that TES in chronic preparations may be used for experimental and therapeutic control of brain activity. PMID:20739569

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-03-01

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

  9. Order-Based Representation in Random Networks of Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Kermany, Einat; Lyakhov, Vladimir; Zrenner, Christoph; Marom, Shimon

    2008-01-01

    The wide range of time scales involved in neural excitability and synaptic transmission might lead to ongoing change in the temporal structure of responses to recurring stimulus presentations on a trial-to-trial basis. This is probably the most severe biophysical constraint on putative time-based primitives of stimulus representation in neuronal networks. Here we show that in spontaneously developing large-scale random networks of cortical neurons in vitro the order in which neurons are recruited following each stimulus is a naturally emerging representation primitive that is invariant to significant temporal changes in spike times. With a relatively small number of randomly sampled neurons, the information about stimulus position is fully retrievable from the recruitment order. The effective connectivity that makes order-based representation invariant to time warping is characterized by the existence of stations through which activity is required to pass in order to propagate further into the network. This study uncovers a simple invariant in a noisy biological network in vitro; its applicability under in vivo constraints remains to be seen. PMID:19023409

  10. Layer V perirhinal cortical ensemble activity during object exploration: a comparison between young and aged rats.

    PubMed

    Burke, S N; Hartzell, A L; Lister, J P; Hoang, L T; Barnes, C A

    2012-10-01

    Object recognition memory requires the perirhinal cortex (PRC) and this cognitive function declines during normal aging. Recent electrophysiological recordings from young rats have shown that neurons in Layer V of the PRC are activated by three-dimensional objects. Thus, it is possible that age-related object recognition deficits result from alterations in PRC neuron activity in older animals. To examine this, the present study used cellular compartment analysis of temporal activity by fluorescence in situ hybridization (catFISH) with confocal microscopy to monitor cellular distributions of activity-induced Arc RNA in layer V of the PRC. Activity was monitored during two distinct epochs of object exploration. In one group of rats (6 young/6 aged) animals were placed in a familiar testing arena and allowed to explore five different three-dimensional objects for two 5-min sessions separated by a 20-min rest (AA). The second group of animals (6 young/6 aged) also explored the same objects for two 5-min sessions, but the environment was changed between the first and the second epoch (AB). Behavioral data showed that both age groups spent less time exploring objects during the second epoch, even when the environment changed, indicating successful recognition. Although the proportion of active neurons between epochs did not change in the AA group, in the AB group more neurons were active during epoch 2 of object exploration. This recruitment of neurons into the active neural ensemble could serve to signal that familiar stimuli are being encountered in a new context. When numbers of Arc positive neurons were compared between age groups, the old rats had significantly lower proportions of Arc-positive PRC neurons in both the AA and AB behavioral conditions. These data support the hypothesis that age-associated functional alterations in the PRC contribute to declines in stimulus recognition over the lifespan.

  11. Engineering cortical neuron polarity with nanomagnets on a chip.

    PubMed

    Kunze, Anja; Tseng, Peter; Godzich, Chanya; Murray, Coleman; Caputo, Anna; Schweizer, Felix E; Di Carlo, Dino

    2015-01-01

    Intra- and extracellular signaling play critical roles in cell polarity, ultimately leading to the development of functional cell-cell connections, tissues, and organs. In the brain, pathologically oriented neurons are often the cause for disordered circuits, severely impacting motor function, perception, and memory. Aside from control through gene expression and signaling pathways, it is known that nervous system development can be manipulated by mechanical stimuli (e.g., outgrowth of axons through externally applied forces). The inverse is true as well: intracellular molecular signals can be converted into forces to yield axonal outgrowth. The complete role played by mechanical signals in mediating single-cell polarity, however, remains currently unclear. Here we employ highly parallelized nanomagnets on a chip to exert local mechanical stimuli on cortical neurons, independently of the amount of superparamagnetic nanoparticles taken up by the cells. The chip-based approach was utilized to quantify the effect of nanoparticle-mediated forces on the intracellular cytoskeleton as visualized by the distribution of the microtubule-associated protein tau. While single cortical neurons prefer to assemble tau proteins following poly-L-lysine surface cues, an optimal force range of 4.5-70 pN by the nanomagnets initiated a tau distribution opposed to the pattern cue. In larger cell clusters (groups comprising six or more cells), nanoparticle-mediated forces induced tau repositioning in an observed range of 190-270 pN, and initiation of magnetic field-directed cell displacement was observed at forces above 300 pN. Our findings lay the groundwork for high-resolution mechanical encoding of neural networks in vitro, mechanically driven cell polarization in brain tissues, and neurotherapeutic approaches using functionalized superparamagnetic nanoparticles to potentially restore disordered neural circuits.

  12. Active cortical innervation protects striatal neurons from slow degeneration in culture.

    PubMed

    Fishbein, Ianai; Segal, Menahem

    2011-03-01

    Spiny striatal GABAergic neurons receive most of their excitatory input from the neocortex. In culture, striatal neurons form inhibitory connections, but the lack of intrinsic excitatory afferents prevents the development of spontaneous network activity. Addition of cortical neurons to the striatal culture provides the necessary excitatory input to the striatal neurons, and in the presence of these neurons, striatal cultures do express spontaneous network activity. We have confirmed that cortical neurons provide excitatory drive to striatal neurons in culture using paired recording from cortical and striatal neurons. In the presence of tetrodotoxin (TTX), which blocks action potential discharges, the connections between cortical and striatal neurons are still formed, and in fact synaptic currents generated between them when TTX is removed are far larger than in control, undrugged cultures. Interestingly, the continuous presence of TTX in the co-culture caused striatal cell death. These observations indicate that the mere presence of cortical neurons is not sufficient to preserve striatal neurons in culture, but their synchronous activity, triggered by cortical excitatory synapses, is critical for the maintenance of viability of striatal neurons. These results have important implications for understanding the role of activity in neurodegenerative diseases of the striatum.

  13. Desynchronization in an ensemble of globally coupled chaotic bursting neuronal oscillators by dynamic delayed feedback control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Che, Yanqiu; Yang, Tingting; Li, Ruixue; Li, Huiyan; Han, Chunxiao; Wang, Jiang; Wei, Xile

    2015-09-01

    In this paper, we propose a dynamic delayed feedback control approach or desynchronization of chaotic-bursting synchronous activities in an ensemble of globally coupled neuronal oscillators. We demonstrate that the difference signal between an ensemble's mean field and its time delayed state, filtered and fed back to the ensemble, can suppress the self-synchronization in the ensemble. These individual units are decoupled and stabilized at the desired desynchronized states while the stimulation signal reduces to the noise level. The effectiveness of the method is illustrated by examples of two different populations of globally coupled chaotic-bursting neurons. The proposed method has potential for mild, effective and demand-controlled therapy of neurological diseases characterized by pathological synchronization.

  14. Effects of 810 nm laser on mouse primary cortical neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kharkwal, Gitika B.; Sharma, Sulbha K.; Huang, Ying-Ying; De Taboada, Luis; McCarthy, Thomas; Hamblin, Michael R.

    2011-03-01

    In the past four decades numerous studies have reported the efficacy of low level light (laser) therapy (LLLT) as a treatment for diverse diseases and injuries. Recent studies have shown that LLLT can biomodulate processes in the central nervous system and has been extensively studied as a stroke treatment. However there is still a lack of knowledge on the effects of LLLT at the cellular level in neurons. The present study aimed to study the effect of 810 nm laser on several cellular processes in primary cortical neurons cultured from mouse embryonic brains. Neurons were irradiated with light dose of 0.03, 0.3, 3, 10 and 30 J/cm2 and intracellular levels of reactive oxygen species, nitric oxide and calcium were measured. The changes in mitochondrial function in response to light were studied in terms of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP). Light induced a significant increase in calcium, ATP and MMP at lower fluences and a decrease at higher fluence. ROS was induced significantly by light at all light doses. Nitric oxide levels also showed an increase on treatment with light. The results of the present study suggest that LLLT at lower fluences is capable of inducing mediators of cell signaling process which in turn may be responsible for the biomodulatory effects of the low level laser. At higher fluences beneficial mediators are reduced but potentially harmful mediators are increased thus offering an explanation for the biphasic dose response.

  15. Neuronal cell sheet of cortical motor neuron phenotype derived from human iPS cells.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Noboru; Arimitsu, Nagisa; Shimizu, Jun; Takai, Kenji; Hirotsu, Chieko; Takada, Erika; Ueda, Yuji; Wakisaka, Sueshige; Fujiwara, Naruyoshi; Suzuki, Tomoko

    2017-03-17

    Transplantation of stem cells which differentiate into more mature neural cells brings about functional improvement in pre-clinical studies of stroke. Previous transplant approaches in diseased brain have utilized injection of the cells in a cell suspension. In addition, neural stem cells were preferentially used as graft. However, these cells had no specific relationship to the damaged tissue of stroke patients and brain injury. The injection of cells in a suspension destroyed the cell-cell interactions that are suggested to be important for promoting functional integrity as cortical motor neurons.

    In order to obtain suitable cell types for grafting patients with stroke and brain damage, we have modified a protocol for differentiating human iPS cells to cells phenotypically related to cortical motor neurons. Moreover, we applied cell sheet technology to neural cell transplantation due to the idea in which keeping cell-cell communications was regarded as important for the repair of host brain architecture.

    Accordingly, we developed neuronal cell sheets being positive for FEZ family zinc finger 2 (Fezf2), COUP-TF-interacting protein 2 (CTIP2), insulin-like growth factor-binding protein 4 (Igfbp4), cysteine-rich motor neuron 1 protein precursor (CRIM1) and forkhead box p2 (Foxp2). These markers are associated with cortical motoneuron which is appropriate for the transplant location in the lesions. The sheets allowed preservation of cell-cell interactions shown by synapsin1 staining after transplantation to damaged mouse brain. The sheet transplantation brought about structural restoration partly and improvement of motor functions in hemiplegic mice.

    Collectively, the cell sheets were transplanted to damaged motor cortex in a way of a novel neuronal cell sheet that maintained cell-cell interactions and improved motor functions of the hemiplegic model mice. The motoneuron cell sheets are possibly applicable for stroke patients and patients with

  16. Subcortical neuronal ensembles: an analysis of motor task association, tremor, oscillations, and synchrony in human patients.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Timothy L; Fuller, Andrew M; Lebedev, Mikhail A; Turner, Dennis A; Nicolelis, Miguel A L

    2012-06-20

    Deep brain stimulation (DBS) has expanded as an effective treatment for motor disorders, providing a valuable opportunity for intraoperative recording of the spiking activity of subcortical neurons. The properties of these neurons and their potential utility in neuroprosthetic applications are not completely understood. During DBS surgeries in 25 human patients with either essential tremor or Parkinson's disease, we acutely recorded the single-unit activity of 274 ventral intermediate/ventral oralis posterior motor thalamus (Vim/Vop) neurons and 123 subthalamic nucleus (STN) neurons. These subcortical neuronal ensembles (up to 23 neurons sampled simultaneously) were recorded while the patients performed a target-tracking motor task using a cursor controlled by a haptic glove. We observed that modulations in firing rate of a substantial number of neurons in both Vim/Vop and STN represented target onset, movement onset/direction, and hand tremor. Neurons in both areas exhibited rhythmic oscillations and pairwise synchrony. Notably, all tremor-associated neurons exhibited synchrony within the ensemble. The data further indicate that oscillatory (likely pathological) neurons and behaviorally tuned neurons are not distinct but rather form overlapping sets. Whereas previous studies have reported a linear relationship between power spectra of neuronal oscillations and hand tremor, we report a nonlinear relationship suggestive of complex encoding schemes. Even in the presence of this pathological activity, linear models were able to extract motor parameters from ensemble discharges. Based on these findings, we propose that chronic multielectrode recordings from Vim/Vop and STN could prove useful for further studying, monitoring, and even treating motor disorders.

  17. On The Use of Dynamic Bayesian Networks in Reconstructing Functional Neuronal Networks from Spike Train Ensembles

    PubMed Central

    Eldawlatly, Seif; Zhou, Yang; Jin, Rong; Oweiss, Karim G.

    2009-01-01

    Coordination among cortical neurons is believed to be key element in mediating many high level cortical processes such as perception, attention, learning and memory formation. Inferring the topology of the neural circuitry underlying this coordination is important to characterize the highly non-linear, time-varying interactions between cortical neurons in the presence of complex stimuli. In this work, we investigate the applicability of Dynamic Bayesian Networks (DBNs) in inferring the effective connectivity between spiking cortical neurons from their observed spike trains. We demonstrate that DBNs can infer the underlying non-linear and time-varying causal interactions between these neurons and can discriminate between mono and polysynaptic links between them under certain constraints governing their putative connectivity. We analyzed conditionally-Poisson spike train data mimicking spiking activity of cortical networks of small and moderately-large sizes. The performance was assessed and compared to other methods under systematic variations of the network structure to mimic a wide range of responses typically observed in the cortex. Results demonstrate the utility of DBN in inferring the effective connectivity in cortical networks. PMID:19852619

  18. Early neurone loss in Alzheimer's disease: cortical or subcortical?

    PubMed

    Arendt, Thomas; Brückner, Martina K; Morawski, Markus; Jäger, Carsten; Gertz, Hermann-Josef

    2015-02-10

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a degenerative disorder where the distribution of pathology throughout the brain is not random but follows a predictive pattern used for pathological staging. While the involvement of defined functional systems is fairly well established for more advanced stages, the initial sites of degeneration are still ill defined. The prevailing concept suggests an origin within the transentorhinal and entorhinal cortex (EC) from where pathology spreads to other areas. Still, this concept has been challenged recently suggesting a potential origin of degeneration in nonthalamic subcortical nuclei giving rise to cortical innervation such as locus coeruleus (LC) and nucleus basalis of Meynert (NbM). To contribute to the identification of the early site of degeneration, here, we address the question whether cortical or subcortical degeneration occurs more early and develops more quickly during progression of AD. To this end, we stereologically assessed neurone counts in the NbM, LC and EC layer-II in the same AD patients ranging from preclinical stages to severe dementia. In all three areas, neurone loss becomes detectable already at preclinical stages and is clearly manifest at prodromal AD/MCI. At more advanced AD, cell loss is most pronounced in the NbM > LC > layer-II EC. During early AD, however, the extent of cell loss is fairly balanced between all three areas without clear indications for a preference of one area. We can thus not rule out that there is more than one way of spreading from its site of origin or that degeneration even occurs independently at several sites in parallel.

  19. Neuronal branching patterns and the economy of cortical wiring.

    PubMed

    Mitchison, G

    1991-08-22

    Keeping the volume of connections in the cortex as low as possible may be an important evolutionary constraint on the design of the brain. Much as an engineer tries to arrange the components of a computer in such a way as to give efficient wiring, so the brain may have evolved a layout of neuronal types which gives an economical use of axonal 'wiring'. One key difference between computer and brain is that connections in the brain take the form of elaborate branching structures. It is argued here that certain features of cortical mapping, such as the stripes and patches seen within cortical areas, may be adaptations which allow efficient wiring by such structures. Some simple calculations are given to support this, using as models for axonal arbors certain branching patterns which give a low volume of wiring. In particular, it is shown that a pattern of stripes can give economical wiring when axon diameters follow a law dp = dp1 + dp2 with p greater than 4, where d1 and d2 are the diameters of the daughter branches and d that of the parent.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-11-01

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

  1. Driving opposing behaviors with ensembles of piriform neurons.

    PubMed

    Choi, Gloria B; Stettler, Dan D; Kallman, Benjamin R; Bhaskar, Shakthi T; Fleischmann, Alexander; Axel, Richard

    2011-09-16

    Anatomic and physiologic studies have suggested a model in which neurons of the piriform cortex receive convergent input from random collections of glomeruli. In this model, odor representations can only be afforded behavioral significance upon experience. We have devised an experimental strategy that permits us to ask whether the activation of an arbitrarily chosen subpopulation of neurons in piriform cortex can elicit different behavioral responses dependent upon learning. Activation of a small subpopulation of piriform neurons expressing channelrhodopsin at multiple loci in the piriform cortex, when paired with reward or shock, elicits either appetitive or aversive behavior. Moreover, we demonstrate that different subpopulations of piriform neurons expressing ChR2 can be discriminated and independently entrained to elicit distinct behaviors. These observations demonstrate that the piriform cortex is sufficient to elicit learned behavioral outputs in the absence of sensory input. These data imply that the piriform does not use spatial order to map odorant identity or behavioral output.

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

    PubMed

    Anderson, B; Harvey, T

    1996-06-07

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

  3. Optogenetic stimulation of cholinergic brainstem neurons during focal limbic seizures: Effects on cortical physiology.

    PubMed

    Furman, Moran; Zhan, Qiong; McCafferty, Cian; Lerner, Benjamin A; Motelow, Joshua E; Meng, Jin; Ma, Chanthia; Buchanan, Gordon F; Witten, Ilana B; Deisseroth, Karl; Cardin, Jessica A; Blumenfeld, Hal

    2015-12-01

    Focal temporal lobe seizures often cause impaired cortical function and loss of consciousness. Recent work suggests that the mechanism for depressed cortical function during focal seizures may depend on decreased subcortical cholinergic arousal, which leads to a sleep-like state of cortical slow-wave activity. To test this hypothesis, we sought to directly activate subcortical cholinergic neurons during focal limbic seizures to determine the effects on cortical function. Here we used an optogenetic approach to selectively stimulate cholinergic brainstem neurons in the pedunculopontine tegmental nucleus during focal limbic seizures induced in a lightly anesthetized rat model. We found an increase in cortical gamma activity and a decrease in delta activity in response to cholinergic stimulation. These findings support the mechanistic role of reduced subcortical cholinergic arousal in causing cortical dysfunction during seizures. Through further work, electrical or optogenetic stimulation of subcortical arousal networks may ultimately lead to new treatments aimed at preventing cortical dysfunction during seizures.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-13

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

  7. Synaptic Ensemble Underlying the Selection and Consolidation of Neuronal Circuits during Learning.

    PubMed

    Hoshiba, Yoshio; Wada, Takeyoshi; Hayashi-Takagi, Akiko

    2017-01-01

    Memories are crucial to the cognitive essence of who we are as human beings. Accumulating evidence has suggested that memories are stored as a subset of neurons that probably fire together in the same ensemble. Such formation of cell ensembles must meet contradictory requirements of being plastic and responsive during learning, but also stable in order to maintain the memory. Although synaptic potentiation is presumed to be the cellular substrate for this process, the link between the two remains correlational. With the application of the latest optogenetic tools, it has been possible to collect direct evidence of the contributions of synaptic potentiation in the formation and consolidation of cell ensemble in a learning task specific manner. In this review, we summarize the current view of the causative role of synaptic plasticity as the cellular mechanism underlying the encoding of memory and recalling of learned memories. In particular, we will be focusing on the latest optoprobe developed for the visualization of such "synaptic ensembles." We further discuss how a new synaptic ensemble could contribute to the formation of cell ensembles during learning and memory. With the development and application of novel research tools in the future, studies on synaptic ensembles will pioneer new discoveries, eventually leading to a comprehensive understanding of how the brain works.

  8. Synaptic Ensemble Underlying the Selection and Consolidation of Neuronal Circuits during Learning

    PubMed Central

    Hoshiba, Yoshio; Wada, Takeyoshi; Hayashi-Takagi, Akiko

    2017-01-01

    Memories are crucial to the cognitive essence of who we are as human beings. Accumulating evidence has suggested that memories are stored as a subset of neurons that probably fire together in the same ensemble. Such formation of cell ensembles must meet contradictory requirements of being plastic and responsive during learning, but also stable in order to maintain the memory. Although synaptic potentiation is presumed to be the cellular substrate for this process, the link between the two remains correlational. With the application of the latest optogenetic tools, it has been possible to collect direct evidence of the contributions of synaptic potentiation in the formation and consolidation of cell ensemble in a learning task specific manner. In this review, we summarize the current view of the causative role of synaptic plasticity as the cellular mechanism underlying the encoding of memory and recalling of learned memories. In particular, we will be focusing on the latest optoprobe developed for the visualization of such “synaptic ensembles.” We further discuss how a new synaptic ensemble could contribute to the formation of cell ensembles during learning and memory. With the development and application of novel research tools in the future, studies on synaptic ensembles will pioneer new discoveries, eventually leading to a comprehensive understanding of how the brain works. PMID:28303092

  9. Development and Maturation of Embryonic Cortical Neurons Grafted into the Damaged Adult Motor Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Ballout, Nissrine; Frappé, Isabelle; Péron, Sophie; Jaber, Mohamed; Zibara, Kazem; Gaillard, Afsaneh

    2016-01-01

    Injury to the human central nervous system can lead to devastating consequences due to its poor ability to self-repair. Neural transplantation aimed at replacing lost neurons and restore functional circuitry has proven to be a promising therapeutical avenue. We previously reported in adult rodent animal models with cortical lesions that grafted fetal cortical neurons could effectively re-establish specific patterns of projections and synapses. The current study was designed to provide a detailed characterization of the spatio-temporal in vivo development of fetal cortical transplanted cells within the lesioned adult motor cortex and their corresponding axonal projections. We show here that as early as 2 weeks after grafting, cortical neuroblasts transplanted into damaged adult motor cortex developed appropriate projections to cortical and subcortical targets. Grafted cells initially exhibited characteristics of immature neurons, which then differentiated into mature neurons with appropriate cortical phenotypes where most were glutamatergic and few were GABAergic. All cortical subtypes identified with the specific markers CTIP2, Cux1, FOXP2, and Tbr1 were generated after grafting as evidenced with BrdU co-labeling. The set of data provided here is of interest as it sets biological standards for future studies aimed at replacing fetal cells with embryonic stem cells as a source of cortical neurons. PMID:27536221

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Neuropeptide Y has been shown to inhibit the immunological activity of reactive microglia in the rat cerebral cortex, to reduce N-methyl-D-aspartate current (INMDA) in cortical neurons, and protect neurons. In this study, after primary cultured microglia from the cerebral cortex of rats were treated with lipopolysaccharide, interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α levels in the cell culture medium increased, and mRNA expression of these cytokines also increased. After primary cultured cortical neurons were incubated with the lipopolysaccharide-treated microglial conditioned medium, peak INMDA in neurons increased. These effects of lipopolysaccharide were suppressed by neuropeptide Y. After addition of the neuropeptide Y Y1 receptor antagonist BIBP3226, the effects of neuropeptide Y completely disappeared. These results suggest that neuropeptide Y prevents excessive production of interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α by inhibiting microglial reactivity. This reduces INMDA in rat cortical neurons, preventing excitotoxicity, thereby protecting neurons. PMID:25206918

  11. Euchromatin histone methyltransferase 1 regulates cortical neuronal network development

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  12. Expression of gonadotropin-releasing hormone receptor in cerebral cortical neurons of embryos and adult rats.

    PubMed

    Quintanar, J Luis; Salinas, Eva; González, Rodolfo

    2007-01-03

    Mammalian gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) was initially isolated from hypothalamus and its receptor from anterior pituitary, although extrapituitary GnRH receptors have been reported. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether GnRH receptor and its mRNA are expressed in cerebral cortical neurons of rat embryos and adult rats using immunohistochemical and reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) techniques. The immunohistochemistry and RT-PCR analysis showed expression of GnRH receptor and presence of its mRNA, in both cerebral cortical neurons of rat embryos and cerebral cortical tissues of adult rats. Additional experiments showed a decrease in the receptor mRNA expression when cultured neurons of rat embryos were treated with GnRH. It is possible that the presence of GnRH receptors in cortical neurons of rat may be involved in other physiological roles such as neurohormone or neuromodulator.

  13. Variations in Acetylcholinesterase Activity within Human Cortical Pyramidal Neurons Across Age and Cognitive Trajectories.

    PubMed

    Janeczek, Monica; Gefen, Tamar; Samimi, Mehrnoosh; Kim, Garam; Weintraub, Sandra; Bigio, Eileen; Rogalski, Emily; Mesulam, M-Marsel; Geula, Changiz

    2017-03-01

    We described an extensive network of cortical pyramidal neurons in the human brain with abundant acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity. Emergence of these neurons during childhood/adolescence, attainment of highest density in early adulthood, and virtual absence in other species led us to hypothesize involvement of AChE within these neurons in higher cortical functions. The current study quantified the density and staining intensity of these neurons using histochemical procedures. Few faintly stained AChE-positive cortical pyramidal neurons were observed in children/adolescents. These neurons attained their highest density and staining intensity in young adulthood. Compared with the young adult group, brains of cognitively normal elderly displayed no significant change in numerical density but a significant decrease in staining intensity of AChE-positive cortical pyramidal neurons. Brains of elderly above age 80 with unusually preserved memory performance (SuperAgers) showed significantly lower staining intensity and density of these neurons when compared with same-age peers. Conceivably, low levels of AChE activity could enhance the impact of acetylcholine on pyramidal neurons to counterbalance other involutional factors that mediate the decline of memory capacity during average aging. We cannot yet tell if elderly with superior memory capacity have constitutively low neuronal AChE levels or if this feature reflects adaptive neuroplasticity.

  14. Pulse activity of populations of cortical neurons under microwave exposures of different intensity.

    PubMed

    Chizhenkova, R A

    2004-06-01

    In rabbit pulse flows of populations of cortical neurons were investigated prior to, during, and after 1-min microwave irradiation (wavelength 37.5 cm, power density 0.2-40 mW/cm2). It was found that the microwave irradiation produced shifts in mean values of interspike intervals and in the number of spike bursts. Peculiarities of rearrangements of pulse flows of cortical neurons were conditioned by an intensity of exposures.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

  16. Real-time Recordings of Migrating Cortical Neurons from GFP and Cre Recombinase Expressing Mice.

    PubMed

    Tielens, Sylvia; Godin, Juliette D; Nguyen, Laurent

    2016-01-04

    The cerebral cortex is one of the most intricate regions of the brain that requires elaborate cell migration patterns for its development. Experimental observations show that projection neurons migrate radially within the cortical wall, whereas interneurons migrate along multiple tangential paths to reach the developing cortex. Tight regulation of the cell migration processes ensures proper positioning and functional integration of neurons to specific cerebral cortical circuits. Disruption of neuronal migration often leads to cortical dysfunction and/or malformation associated with neurological disorders. Unveiling the molecular control of neuron migration is thus fundamental to understanding the physiological or pathological development of the cerebral cortex. In this unit, protocols allowing detailed analysis of patterns of migration of both interneurons and projection neurons under different experimental conditions (i.e., loss or gain of function) are presented.

  17. Why Cortical Neurons Cannot Divide, and Why Do They Usually Die in the Attempt?

    PubMed

    Aranda-Anzaldo, Armando; Dent, Myrna A R

    2017-04-01

    Cortical neurons are prime examples of terminally differentiated, postmitotic cells. However, under experimental or pathological conditions, they can re-enter the cell cycle and replicate DNA but are unable to divide, dying by apoptosis or becoming either polyploid or aneuploid. Any cellular state that depends on the action of genes and their products can be reverted or bypassed by spontaneous or induced mutations, yet there are currently no reports of dividing cortical neurons. Thus, it seems unlikely that the remarkably stable postmitotic condition of cortical neurons depends on specific gene functions. This Review summarizes evidence that the postmitotic state of cortical neurons depends on the high stability of its underlying nuclear structure that results from an entropy-driven process aimed at dissipating the intrinsic structural stress present in chromosomal DNA in such a way that the structural stability of the neuronal nucleus becomes an insurmountable energy barrier for karyokinesis and mitosis. From this perspective, the integral properties of the nuclear higher order structure in neurons provide an explanation not only for why cortical neurons cannot divide but also for why they usually die if they happen to replicate their DNA. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Neuregulin-1 Regulates Cortical Inhibitory Neuron Dendrite and Synapse Growth through DISC1

    PubMed Central

    Kwan, Vickie

    2016-01-01

    Cortical inhibitory neurons play crucial roles in regulating excitatory synaptic networks and cognitive function and aberrant development of these cells have been linked to neurodevelopmental disorders. The secreted neurotrophic factor Neuregulin-1 (NRG1) and its receptor ErbB4 are established regulators of inhibitory neuron connectivity, but the developmental signalling mechanisms regulating this process remain poorly understood. Here, we provide evidence that NRG1-ErbB4 signalling functions through the multifunctional scaffold protein, Disrupted in Schizophrenia 1 (DISC1), to regulate the development of cortical inhibitory interneuron dendrite and synaptic growth. We found that NRG1 increases inhibitory neuron dendrite complexity and glutamatergic synapse formation onto inhibitory neurons and that this effect is blocked by expression of a dominant negative DISC1 mutant, or DISC1 knockdown. We also discovered that NRG1 treatment increases DISC1 expression and its localization to glutamatergic synapses being made onto cortical inhibitory neurons. Mechanistically, we determined that DISC1 binds ErbB4 within cortical inhibitory neurons. Collectively, these data suggest that a NRG1-ErbB4-DISC1 signalling pathway regulates the development of cortical inhibitory neuron dendrite and synaptic growth. Given that NRG1, ErbB4, and DISC1 are schizophrenia-linked genes, these findings shed light on how independent risk factors may signal in a common developmental pathway that contributes to neural connectivity defects and disease pathogenesis. PMID:27847649

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

    PubMed

    Tang, Bor Luen

    2016-07-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Guan, Sudong; Zhu, Yan; Wang, Jin-Hui

    2015-01-01

    Background Acidosis impairs cognitions and behaviors presumably by acidification-induced changes in neuronal metabolism. Cortical GABAergic neurons are vulnerable to pathological factors and their injury leads to brain dysfunction. How acidosis induces GABAergic neuron injury remains elusive. As the glia cells and neurons interact each other, we intend to examine the role of the astrocytes in acidosis-induced GABAergic neuron injury. Results Experiments were done at GABAergic cells and astrocytes in mouse cortical slices. To identify astrocytic involvement in acidosis-induced impairment, we induced the acidification in single GABAergic neuron by infusing proton intracellularly or in both neurons and astrocytes by using proton extracellularly. Compared the effects of intracellular acidification and extracellular acidification on GABAergic neurons, we found that their active intrinsic properties and synaptic outputs appeared more severely impaired in extracellular acidosis than intracellular acidosis. Meanwhile, extracellular acidosis deteriorated glutamate transporter currents on the astrocytes and upregulated excitatory synaptic transmission on the GABAergic neurons. Moreover, the antagonists of glutamate NMDA-/AMPA-receptors partially reverse extracellular acidosis-induced injury in the GABAergic neurons. Conclusion Our studies suggest that acidosis leads to the dysfunction of cortical GABAergic neurons by astrocyte-mediated excitotoxicity, in addition to their metabolic changes as indicated previously. PMID:26474076

  1. Ramping ensemble activity in dorsal anterior cingulate neurons during persistent commitment to a decision

    PubMed Central

    Hayden, Benjamin Y.

    2015-01-01

    We frequently need to commit to a choice to achieve our goals; however, the neural processes that keep us motivated in pursuit of delayed goals remain obscure. We examined ensemble responses of neurons in macaque dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC), an area previously implicated in self-control and persistence, in a task that requires commitment to a choice to obtain a reward. After reward receipt, dACC neurons signaled reward amount with characteristic ensemble firing rate patterns; during the delay in anticipation of the reward, ensemble activity smoothly and gradually came to resemble the postreward pattern. On the subset of risky trials, in which a reward was anticipated with 50% certainty, ramping ensemble activity evolved to the pattern associated with the anticipated reward (and not with the anticipated loss) and then, on loss trials, took on an inverted form anticorrelated with the form associated with a win. These findings enrich our knowledge of reward processing in dACC and may have broader implications for our understanding of persistence and self-control. PMID:26334016

  2. Bilaminar Co-culture of Primary Rat Cortical Neurons and Glia

    PubMed Central

    Meucci, Olimpia

    2011-01-01

    This video will guide you through the process of culturing rat cortical neurons in the presence of a glial feeder layer, a system known as a bilaminar or co-culture model. This system is suitable for a variety of experimental needs requiring either a glass or plastic growth substrate and can also be used for culture of other types of neurons. Rat cortical neurons obtained from the late embryonic stage (E17) are plated on glass coverslips or tissue culture dishes facing a feeder layer of glia grown on dishes or plastic coverslips (known as Thermanox), respectively. The choice between the two configurations depends on the specific experimental technique used, which may require, or not, that neurons are grown on glass (e.g. calcium imaging versus Western blot). The glial feeder layer, an astroglia-enriched secondary culture of mixed glia, is separately prepared from the cortices of newborn rat pups (P2-4) prior to the neuronal dissection. A major advantage of this culture system as compared to a culture of neurons only is the support of neuronal growth, survival, and differentiation provided by trophic factors secreted from the glial feeder layer, which more accurately resembles the brain environment in vivo. Furthermore, the co-culture can be used to study neuronal-glial interactions1. At the same time, glia contamination in the neuronal layer is prevented by different means (low density culture, addition of mitotic inhibitors, lack of serum and use of optimized culture medium) leading to a virtually pure neuronal layer, comparable to other established methods1-3. Neurons can be easily separated from the glial layer at any time during culture and used for different experimental applications ranging from electrophysiology4, cellular and molecular biology5-8, biochemistry5, imaging and microscopy4,6,7,9,10. The primary neurons extend axons and dendrites to form functional synapses11, a process which is not observed in neuronal cell lines, although some cell lines do

  3. Decoding individuated finger movements using volume-constrained neuronal ensembles in the M1 hand area.

    PubMed

    Acharya, Soumyadipta; Tenore, Francesco; Aggarwal, Vikram; Etienne-Cummings, Ralph; Schieber, Marc H; Thakor, Nitish V

    2008-02-01

    Individuated finger and wrist movements can be decoded using random subpopulations of neurons that are widely distributed in the primary motor (M1) hand area. This work investigates 1) whether it is possible to decode dexterous finger movements using spatially-constrained volumes of neurons as typically recorded from a microelectrode array; and 2) whether decoding accuracy differs due to the configuration or location of the array within the M1 hand area. Single-unit activities were sequentially recorded from task-related neurons in two rhesus monkeys as they performed individuated movements of the fingers and the wrist. Simultaneous neuronal ensembles were simulated by constraining these activities to the recording field dimensions of conventional microelectrode array architectures. Artificial neural network (ANN) based filters were able to decode individuated finger movements with greater than 90% accuracy for the majority of movement types, using as few as 20 neurons from these ensemble activities. Furthermore, for the large majority of cases there were no significant differences (p < 0.01) in decoding accuracy as a function of the location of the recording volume. The results suggest that a brain-machine interface (BMI) for dexterous control of individuated fingers and the wrist can be implemented using microelectrode arrays placed broadly in the M1 hand area.

  4. The effects of spontaneous activity, background noise, and the stimulus ensemble on information transfer in neurons.

    PubMed

    Chacron, Maurice J; Longtin, André; Maler, Leonard

    2003-11-01

    Information theory is playing an increasingly important role in the analysis of neural data as it can precisely quantify the reliability of stimulus-response functions. Estimating the mutual information between a neural spike train and a time varying stimulus is, however, not trivial in practice and requires assumptions about the specific computations being performed by the neuron under study. Consequently, estimates of the mutual information depend on these assumptions and their validity must be ascertained in the particular physiological context in which experiments are carried out. Here we compare results obtained using different information measures that make different assumptions about the neural code (i.e. the way information is being encoded and decoded) and the stimulus ensemble (i.e. the set of stimuli that the animal can encounter in nature). Our comparisons are carried out in the context of spontaneously active neurons. However, some of our results are also applicable to neurons that are not spontaneously active. We first show conditions under which a single stimulus provides a good sample of the entire stimulus ensemble. Furthermore, we use a recently introduced information measure that is based on the spontaneous activity of the neuron rather than on the stimulus ensemble. This measure is compared to the Shannon information and it is shown that the two differ only by a constant. This constant is shown to represent the information that the neuron's spontaneous activity transmits about the fact that no stimulus is present in the animal's environment. As a consequence, the mutual information measure based on spontaneous activity is easily applied to stimuli that mimic those seen in nature, as it does not require a priori knowledge of the stimulus ensemble. Finally, we consider the effect of noise in the animal's environment on information transmission about sensory stimuli. Our results show that, as expected, such 'background' noise will increase the

  5. Sleep active cortical neurons expressing neuronal nitric oxide synthase are active after both acute sleep deprivation and chronic sleep restriction.

    PubMed

    Zielinski, M R; Kim, Y; Karpova, S A; Winston, S; McCarley, R W; Strecker, R E; Gerashchenko, D

    2013-09-05

    Non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep electroencephalographic (EEG) delta power (~0.5-4 Hz), also known as slow wave activity (SWA), is typically enhanced after acute sleep deprivation (SD) but not after chronic sleep restriction (CSR). Recently, sleep-active cortical neurons expressing neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) were identified and associated with enhanced SWA after short acute bouts of SD (i.e., 6h). However, the relationship between cortical nNOS neuronal activity and SWA during CSR is unknown. We compared the activity of cortical neurons expressing nNOS (via c-Fos and nNOS immuno-reactivity, respectively) and sleep in rats in three conditions: (1) after 18-h of acute SD; (2) after five consecutive days of sleep restriction (SR) (18-h SD per day with 6h ad libitum sleep opportunity per day); (3) and time-of-day matched ad libitum sleep controls. Cortical nNOS neuronal activity was enhanced during sleep after both 18-h SD and 5 days of SR treatments compared to control treatments. SWA and NREM sleep delta energy (the product of NREM sleep duration and SWA) were positively correlated with enhanced cortical nNOS neuronal activity after 18-h SD but not 5days of SR. That neurons expressing nNOS were active after longer amounts of acute SD (18h vs. 6h reported in the literature) and were correlated with SWA further suggest that these cells might regulate SWA. However, since these neurons were active after CSR when SWA was not enhanced, these findings suggest that mechanisms downstream of their activation are altered during CSR.

  6. GABA and glycine are protective to mature but toxic to immature rat cortical neurons under hypoxia.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Peng; Qian, Hong; Xia, Ying

    2005-07-01

    Although recent studies suggest that gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and glycine may be 'inhibitory' to mature neurons, but 'excitatory' to immature neurons under normoxia, it is unknown whether inhibitory neurotransmitters are differentially involved in neuronal response to hypoxia in immature and mature neurons. In the present study, we exposed rat cortical neurons to hypoxia (1% O2) and examined the effects of three major inhibitory neurotransmitters (GABA, glycine and taurine) on the hypoxic neurons at different neuronal ages [days in vitro (DIV)4-20]. Our data showed that the cortical neurons expressed both GABA(A) and glycine receptors with differential developmental profiles. GABA (10-2000 microm) was neuroprotective to hypoxic neurons of DIV20, but enhanced hypoxic injury in neurons of neurons, and was slightly toxic to neurons>DIV4. In comparison with delta-opioid receptor (DOR)-induced protection in DIV20 neurons exposed to 72 h of hypoxia, glycine-induced protection was weaker than that of DOR but stronger than that of GABA and taurine. These data suggest that the effects of the inhibitory neurotransmitters on hypoxic cortical neurons are age-dependent, with GABA and glycine being neurotoxic to immature neurons and neuroprotective to mature neurons.

  7. Role of Immediate-Early Genes in Synaptic Plasticity and Neuronal Ensembles Underlying the Memory Trace

    PubMed Central

    Minatohara, Keiichiro; Akiyoshi, Mika; Okuno, Hiroyuki

    2016-01-01

    In the brain, neuronal gene expression is dynamically changed in response to neuronal activity. In particular, the expression of immediate-early genes (IEGs) such as egr-1, c-fos, and Arc is rapidly and selectively upregulated in subsets of neurons in specific brain regions associated with learning and memory formation. IEG expression has therefore been widely used as a molecular marker for neuronal populations that undergo plastic changes underlying formation of long-term memory. In recent years, optogenetic and pharmacogenetic studies of neurons expressing c-fos or Arc have revealed that, during learning, IEG-positive neurons encode and store information that is required for memory recall, suggesting that they may be involved in formation of the memory trace. However, despite accumulating evidence for the role of IEGs in synaptic plasticity, the molecular and cellular mechanisms associated with this process remain unclear. In this review, we first summarize recent literature concerning the role of IEG-expressing neuronal ensembles in organizing the memory trace. We then focus on the physiological significance of IEGs, especially Arc, in synaptic plasticity, and describe our hypotheses about the importance of Arc expression in various types of input-specific circuit reorganization. Finally, we offer perspectives on Arc function that would unveil the role of IEG-expressing neurons in the formation of memory traces in the hippocampus and other brain areas. PMID:26778955

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-16

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

  9. Amyloid precursor protein expression and processing are differentially regulated during cortical neuron differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Bergström, Petra; Agholme, Lotta; Nazir, Faisal Hayat; Satir, Tugce Munise; Toombs, Jamie; Wellington, Henrietta; Strandberg, Joakim; Bontell, Thomas Olsson; Kvartsberg, Hlin; Holmström, Maria; Boreström, Cecilia; Simonsson, Stina; Kunath, Tilo; Lindahl, Anders; Blennow, Kaj; Hanse, Eric; Portelius, Erik; Wray, Selina; Zetterberg, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid precursor protein (APP) and its cleavage product amyloid β (Aβ) have been thoroughly studied in Alzheimer’s disease. However, APP also appears to be important for neuronal development. Differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) towards cortical neurons enables in vitro mechanistic studies on human neuronal development. Here, we investigated expression and proteolytic processing of APP during differentiation of human iPSCs towards cortical neurons over a 100-day period. APP expression remained stable during neuronal differentiation, whereas APP processing changed. α-Cleaved soluble APP (sAPPα) was secreted early during differentiation, from neuronal progenitors, while β-cleaved soluble APP (sAPPβ) was first secreted after deep-layer neurons had formed. Short Aβ peptides, including Aβ1-15/16, peaked during the progenitor stage, while processing shifted towards longer peptides, such as Aβ1-40/42, when post-mitotic neurons appeared. This indicates that APP processing is regulated throughout differentiation of cortical neurons and that amyloidogenic APP processing, as reflected by Aβ1-40/42, is associated with mature neuronal phenotypes. PMID:27383650

  10. Amyloid precursor protein expression and processing are differentially regulated during cortical neuron differentiation.

    PubMed

    Bergström, Petra; Agholme, Lotta; Nazir, Faisal Hayat; Satir, Tugce Munise; Toombs, Jamie; Wellington, Henrietta; Strandberg, Joakim; Bontell, Thomas Olsson; Kvartsberg, Hlin; Holmström, Maria; Boreström, Cecilia; Simonsson, Stina; Kunath, Tilo; Lindahl, Anders; Blennow, Kaj; Hanse, Eric; Portelius, Erik; Wray, Selina; Zetterberg, Henrik

    2016-07-07

    Amyloid precursor protein (APP) and its cleavage product amyloid β (Aβ) have been thoroughly studied in Alzheimer's disease. However, APP also appears to be important for neuronal development. Differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) towards cortical neurons enables in vitro mechanistic studies on human neuronal development. Here, we investigated expression and proteolytic processing of APP during differentiation of human iPSCs towards cortical neurons over a 100-day period. APP expression remained stable during neuronal differentiation, whereas APP processing changed. α-Cleaved soluble APP (sAPPα) was secreted early during differentiation, from neuronal progenitors, while β-cleaved soluble APP (sAPPβ) was first secreted after deep-layer neurons had formed. Short Aβ peptides, including Aβ1-15/16, peaked during the progenitor stage, while processing shifted towards longer peptides, such as Aβ1-40/42, when post-mitotic neurons appeared. This indicates that APP processing is regulated throughout differentiation of cortical neurons and that amyloidogenic APP processing, as reflected by Aβ1-40/42, is associated with mature neuronal phenotypes.

  11. Reelin and cofilin cooperate during the migration of cortical neurons: a quantitative morphological analysis.

    PubMed

    Chai, Xuejun; Zhao, Shanting; Fan, Li; Zhang, Wei; Lu, Xi; Shao, Hong; Wang, Shaobo; Song, Lingzhen; Failla, Antonio Virgilio; Zobiak, Bernd; Mannherz, Hans G; Frotscher, Michael

    2016-03-15

    In reeler mutant mice, which are deficient in reelin (Reln), the lamination of the cerebral cortex is disrupted. Reelin signaling induces phosphorylation of LIM kinase 1, which phosphorylates the actin-depolymerizing protein cofilin in migrating neurons. Conditional cofilin mutants show neuronal migration defects. Thus, both reelin and cofilin are indispensable during cortical development. To analyze the effects of cofilin phosphorylation on neuronal migration we used in utero electroporation to transfect E14.5 wild-type cortical neurons with pCAG-EGFP plasmids encoding either a nonphosphorylatable form of cofilin 1 (cofilin(S3A)), a pseudophosphorylated form (cofilin(S3E)) or wild-type cofilin 1 (cofilin(WT)). Wild-type controls and reeler neurons were transfected with pCAG-EGFP. Real-time microscopy and histological analyses revealed that overexpression of cofilin(WT) and both phosphomutants induced migration defects and morphological abnormalities of cortical neurons. Of note, reeler neurons and cofilin(S3A)- and cofilin(S3E)-transfected neurons showed aberrant backward migration towards the ventricular zone. Overexpression of cofilin(S3E), the pseudophosphorylated form, partially rescued the migration defect of reeler neurons, as did overexpression of Limk1. Collectively, the results indicate that reelin and cofilin cooperate in controlling cytoskeletal dynamics during neuronal migration.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-09-12

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

  13. Secreted factors from ventral telencephalon induce the differentiation of GABAergic neurons in cortical cultures.

    PubMed

    Trinh, H-h; Reid, J; Shin, E; Liapi, A; Parnavelas, J G; Nadarajah, B

    2006-12-01

    It is widely believed that the pyramidal cells and interneurons of the cerebral cortex are distinct in their origin, lineage and genetic make up. In view of these findings, the current thesis is that the phenotype determination of cortical neurons is primarily directed by genetic mechanisms. Using in vitro assays, the present study demonstrates that secreted factors from ganglionic eminence (GE) of the ventral telencephalon have the potency to induce the differentiation of a subset of cortical neurons towards gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic lineage. Characterization of cortical cultures that were exposed to medium derived from GE illustrated a significant increase in the number of GABA-, calretinin- and calbindin-positive neurons. Calcium imaging together with pharmacological studies showed that the application of exogenous medium significantly elevated the intracellular calcium transients in cortical neurons through the activation of ionotropic glutamate receptors. The increase in GABA+ neurons appeared to be associated with the elevated calcium activity; treatment with blockers specific for glutamate receptors abolished both the synchronized transients and reduced the differentiation of GABAergic neurons. Such studies demonstrate that although intrinsic mechanisms determine the fate of cortical interneurons, extrinsic factors have the potency to influence their neurochemical differentiation and contribute towards their molecular diversity.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-03-01

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

  15. Assessing similarity to primary tissue and cortical layer identity in induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cortical neurons through single-cell transcriptomics.

    PubMed

    Handel, Adam E; Chintawar, Satyan; Lalic, Tatjana; Whiteley, Emma; Vowles, Jane; Giustacchini, Alice; Argoud, Karene; Sopp, Paul; Nakanishi, Mahito; Bowden, Rory; Cowley, Sally; Newey, Sarah; Akerman, Colin; Ponting, Chris P; Cader, M Zameel

    2016-03-01

    Induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived cortical neurons potentially present a powerful new model to understand corticogenesis and neurological disease. Previous work has established that differentiation protocols can produce cortical neurons, but little has been done to characterize these at cellular resolution. In particular, it is unclear to what extent in vitro two-dimensional, relatively disordered culture conditions recapitulate the development of in vivo cortical layer identity. Single-cell multiplex reverse transcriptase-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) was used to interrogate the expression of genes previously implicated in cortical layer or phenotypic identity in individual cells. Totally, 93.6% of single cells derived from iPSCs expressed genes indicative of neuronal identity. High proportions of single neurons derived from iPSCs expressed glutamatergic receptors and synaptic genes. And, 68.4% of iPSC-derived neurons expressing at least one layer marker could be assigned to a laminar identity using canonical cortical layer marker genes. We compared single-cell RNA-seq of our iPSC-derived neurons to available single-cell RNA-seq data from human fetal and adult brain and found that iPSC-derived cortical neurons closely resembled primary fetal brain cells. Unexpectedly, a subpopulation of iPSC-derived neurons co-expressed canonical fetal deep and upper cortical layer markers. However, this appeared to be concordant with data from primary cells. Our results therefore provide reassurance that iPSC-derived cortical neurons are highly similar to primary cortical neurons at the level of single cells but suggest that current layer markers, although effective, may not be able to disambiguate cortical layer identity in all cells.

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

    PubMed

    Hatanaka, Yumiko; Yamauchi, Kenta

    2013-01-01

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

  17. The excitation and depression of mammalian cortical neurones by amino acids

    PubMed Central

    Crawford, J. M.; Curtis, D. R.

    1964-01-01

    Amino acids related to L-glutamic and γ-amino-n-butyric acid have been administered electrophoretically, and by pressure ejection, into the extraneuronal environment of single neurones in the pericruciate cortex of cats anaesthetized with allobarbitone or allobarbitone-urethane. Acidic amino acids related to glutamic acid, particularly N-methyl-D-aspartic acid, excited cortical neurones. Neutral amino acids related to γ-amino-n-butyric acid, particularly 3-amino-1-propanesulphonic acid, depressed cortical neurones. Some of the depressants blocked the antidromic invasion of Betz cells by pyramidal volleys. There are no essential differences between the sensitivities of cortical and spinal neurones towards locally administered amino acids. A transmitter function of such amino acids within the mammalian central nervous system is considered unlikely. PMID:14228133

  18. α-Tocopherol at Nanomolar Concentration Protects Cortical Neurons against Oxidative Stress

    PubMed Central

    Zakharova, Irina O.; Sokolova, Tatiana V.; Vlasova, Yulia A.; Bayunova, Liubov V.; Rychkova, Maria P.; Avrova, Natalia F.

    2017-01-01

    The aim of the present work is to study the mechanism of the α-tocopherol (α-T) protective action at nanomolar and micromolar concentrations against H2O2-induced brain cortical neuron death. The mechanism of α-T action on neurons at its nanomolar concentrations characteristic for brain extracellular space has not been practically studied yet. Preincubation with nanomolar and micromolar α-T for 18 h was found to increase the viability of cortical neurons exposed to H2O2; α-T effect was concentration-dependent in the nanomolar range. However, preincubation with nanomolar α-T for 30 min was not effective. Nanomolar and micromolar α-T decreased the reactive oxygen species accumulation induced in cortical neurons by the prooxidant. Using immunoblotting it was shown that preincubation with α-T at nanomolar and micromolar concentrations for 18 h prevented Akt inactivation and decreased PKCδ activation induced in cortical neurons by H2O2. α-T prevented the ERK1/2 sustained activation during 24 h caused by H2O2. α-T at nanomolar and micromolar concentrations prevented a great increase of the proapoptotic to antiapoptotic proteins (Bax/Bcl-2) ratio, elicited by neuron exposure to H2O2. The similar neuron protection mechanism by nanomolar and micromolar α-T suggests that a “more is better” approach to patients’ supplementation with vitamin E or α-T is not reasonable. PMID:28117722

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-06

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

  20. Canonical Organization of Layer 1 Neuron-Led Cortical Inhibitory and Disinhibitory Interneuronal Circuits.

    PubMed

    Lee, Alice J; Wang, Guangfu; Jiang, Xiaolong; Johnson, Seraphina M; Hoang, Elizabeth T; Lanté, Fabien; Stornetta, Ruth L; Beenhakker, Mark P; Shen, Ying; Julius Zhu, J

    2015-08-01

    Interneurons play a key role in cortical function and dysfunction, yet organization of cortical interneuronal circuitry remains poorly understood. Cortical Layer 1 (L1) contains 2 general GABAergic interneuron groups, namely single bouquet cells (SBCs) and elongated neurogliaform cells (ENGCs). SBCs predominantly make unidirectional inhibitory connections (SBC→) with L2/3 interneurons, whereas ENGCs frequently form reciprocal inhibitory and electric connections (ENGC↔) with L2/3 interneurons. Here, we describe a systematic investigation of the pyramidal neuron targets of L1 neuron-led interneuronal circuits in the rat barrel cortex with simultaneous octuple whole-cell recordings and report a simple organizational scheme of the interneuronal circuits. Both SBCs→ and ENGC ↔ L2/3 interneuronal circuits connect to L2/3 and L5, but not L6, pyramidal neurons. SBC → L2/3 interneuronal circuits primarily inhibit the entire dendritic-somato-axonal axis of a few L2/3 and L5 pyramidal neurons located within the same column. In contrast, ENGC ↔ L2/3 interneuronal circuits generally inhibit the distal apical dendrite of many L2/3 and L5 pyramidal neurons across multiple columns. Finally, L1 interneuron-led circuits target distinct subcellular compartments of L2/3 and L5 pyramidal neurons in a L2/3 interneuron type-dependent manner. These results suggest that L1 neurons form canonical interneuronal circuits to control information processes in both supra- and infragranular cortical layers.

  1. Neuron numbers in sensory cortices of five delphinids compared to a physeterid, the pygmy sperm whale.

    PubMed

    Poth, C; Fung, C; Güntürkün, O; Ridgway, S H; Oelschläger, H H A

    2005-09-15

    With its large mass and enormous gyrification, the neocortex of whales and dolphins has always been a challenge to neurobiologists. Here we analyse the relationship between neuron number per cortical unit in three different sensory areas and brain mass in six different toothed whale species, five delphinids and one physeterid. Cortex samples, including primary cortical areas of the auditory, visual, and somatosensory systems were taken from both hemispheres of brains fixed in 10% buffered formalin. The samples were embedded in paraffin, sectioned at 25 microm thickness and stained with cresyl violet. Because cortical thickness varies among toothed whale species, cell counts were done in cortical units measuring 150mum in width, 25 microm in thickness, and extending from the pial surface to the white matter. By arranging the delphinid brains according to their total mass, 834-6052 g, we found decreasing neuron numbers in the investigated areas with increasing brain mass. The pigmy sperm whale (Kogia breviceps), a physeterid with an adult brain weight of 1000 g had a distinctly lower neuron number per cortical unit. As had been expected, an increase in adult brain weight in delphinid cetaceans (family Delphinidae) is not correlated with an increase in neuron number per cortical unit.

  2. Cortical Divergent Projections in Mice Originate from Two Sequentially Generated, Distinct Populations of Excitatory Cortical Neurons with Different Initial Axonal Outgrowth Characteristics.

    PubMed

    Hatanaka, Yumiko; Namikawa, Tomohiro; Yamauchi, Kenta; Kawaguchi, Yasuo

    2016-05-01

    Excitatory cortical neurons project to various subcortical and intracortical regions, and exhibit diversity in their axonal connections. Although this diversity may develop from primary axons, how many types of axons initially occur remains unknown. Using a sparse-labeling in utero electroporation method, we investigated the axonal outgrowth of these neurons in mice and correlated the data with axonal projections in adults. Examination of lateral cortex neurons labeled during the main period of cortical neurogenesis (E11.5-E15.5) indicated that axonal outgrowth commonly occurs in the intermediate zone. Conversely, the axonal direction varied; neurons labeled before E12.5 and the earliest cortical plate neurons labeled at E12.5 projected laterally, whereas neurons labeled thereafter projected medially. The expression of Ctip2 and Satb2 and the layer destinations of these neurons support the view that lateral and medial projection neurons are groups of prospective subcortical and callosal projection neurons, respectively. Consistently, birthdating experiments demonstrated that presumptive lateral projection neurons were generated earlier than medial projection neurons, even within the same layer. These results suggest that the divergent axonal connections of excitatory cortical neurons begin from two types of primary axons, which originate from two sequentially generated distinct subpopulations: early-born lateral (subcortical) and later-born medial (callosal) projection neuron groups.

  3. Caloric restriction stimulates autophagy in rat cortical neurons through neuropeptide Y and ghrelin receptors activation

    PubMed Central

    Carmo-Silva, Sara; Botelho, Mariana; de Almeida, Luís Pereira; Cavadas, Cláudia

    2016-01-01

    Caloric restriction is an anti-aging intervention known to extend lifespan in several experimental models, at least in part, by stimulating autophagy. Caloric restriction increases neuropeptide Y (NPY) in the hypothalamus and plasma ghrelin, a peripheral gut hormone that acts in hypothalamus to modulate energy homeostasis. NPY and ghrelin have been shown to be neuroprotective in different brain areas and to induce several physiological modifications similar to those induced by caloric restriction. However, the effect of NPY and ghrelin in autophagy in cortical neurons is currently not known. Using a cell culture of rat cortical neurons we investigate the involvement of NPY and ghrelin in caloric restriction-induced autophagy. We observed that a caloric restriction mimetic cell culture medium stimulates autophagy in rat cortical neurons and NPY or ghrelin receptor antagonists blocked this effect. On the other hand, exogenous NPY or ghrelin stimulate autophagy in rat cortical neurons. Moreover, NPY mediates the stimulatory effect of ghrelin on autophagy in rat cortical neurons. Since autophagy impairment occurs in aging and age-related neurodegenerative diseases, NPY and ghrelin synergistic effect on autophagy stimulation may suggest a new strategy to delay aging process. PMID:27441412

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

    PubMed

    López-Sánchez, Noelia; Frade, José M

    2013-04-24

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

  5. Role of Central Amygdala Neuronal Ensembles in Incubation of Nicotine Craving

    PubMed Central

    Coen, Kathleen; Tamadon, Sahar; Hope, Bruce T.; Shaham, Yavin; Lê, A.D.

    2016-01-01

    The craving response to smoking-associated cues in humans or to intravenous nicotine-associated cues in adult rats progressively increases or incubates after withdrawal. Here, we further characterized incubation of nicotine craving in the rat model by determining whether this incubation is observed after adolescent-onset nicotine self-administration. We also used the neuronal activity marker Fos and the Daun02 chemogenetic inactivation procedure to identify cue-activated neuronal ensembles that mediate incubation of nicotine craving. We trained adolescent and adult male rats to self-administer nicotine (2 h/d for 12 d) and assessed cue-induced nicotine seeking in extinction tests (1 h) after 1, 7, 14, or 28 withdrawal days. In both adult and adolescent rats, nicotine seeking in the relapse tests followed an inverted U-shaped curve, with maximal responding on withdrawal day 14. Independent of the withdrawal day, nicotine seeking in the relapse tests was higher in adult than in adolescent rats. Analysis of Fos expression in different brain areas of adolescent and adult rats on withdrawal days 1 and 14 showed time-dependent increases in the number of Fos-positive neurons in central and basolateral amygdala, orbitofrontal cortex, ventral and dorsal medial prefrontal cortex, and nucleus accumbens core and shell. In adult Fos–lacZ transgenic rats, selective inactivation of nicotine-cue-activated Fos neurons in central amygdala, but not orbitofrontal cortex, decreased “incubated” nicotine seeking on withdrawal day 14. Our results demonstrate that incubation of nicotine craving occurs after adolescent-onset nicotine self-administration and that neuronal ensembles in central amygdala play a critical role in this incubation. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The craving response to smoking-associated cues in humans or to intravenous nicotine-associated cues in adult rats progressively increases or incubates after withdrawal. It is currently unknown whether incubation of craving

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-06

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

  8. Recruitment of a Neuronal Ensemble in the Central Nucleus of the Amygdala Is Required for Alcohol Dependence

    PubMed Central

    de Guglielmo, Giordano; Crawford, Elena; Kim, Sarah; Vendruscolo, Leandro F.; Hope, Bruce T.; Brennan, Molly; Cole, Maury; Koob, George F.

    2016-01-01

    Abstinence from alcohol is associated with the recruitment of neurons in the central nucleus of the amygdala (CeA) in nondependent rats that binge drink alcohol and in alcohol-dependent rats. However, whether the recruitment of this neuronal ensemble in the CeA is causally related to excessive alcohol drinking or if it represents a consequence of excessive drinking remains unknown. We tested the hypothesis that the recruitment of a neuronal ensemble in the CeA during abstinence is required for excessive alcohol drinking in nondependent rats that binge drink alcohol and in alcohol-dependent rats. We found that inactivation of the CeA neuronal ensemble during abstinence significantly decreased alcohol drinking in both groups. In nondependent rats, the decrease in alcohol intake was transient and returned to normal the day after the injection. In dependent rats, inactivation of the neuronal ensemble with Daun02 produced a long-term decrease in alcohol drinking. Moreover, we observed a significant reduction of somatic withdrawal signs in dependent animals that were injected with Daun02 in the CeA. These results indicate that the recruitment of a neuronal ensemble in the CeA during abstinence from alcohol is causally related to excessive alcohol drinking in alcohol-dependent rats, whereas a similar neuronal ensemble only partially contributed to alcohol-binge-like drinking in nondependent rats. These results identify a critical neurobiological mechanism that may be required for the transition to alcohol dependence, suggesting that focusing on the neuronal ensemble in the CeA may lead to a better understanding of the etiology of alcohol use disorders and improve medication development. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Alcohol dependence recruits neurons in the central nucleus of the amygdala (CeA). Here, we found that inactivation of a specific dependence-induced neuronal ensemble in the CeA reversed excessive alcohol drinking and somatic signs of alcohol dependence in rats. These

  9. Mice lacking p35, a neuronal specific activator of Cdk5, display cortical lamination defects, seizures, and adult lethality.

    PubMed

    Chae, T; Kwon, Y T; Bronson, R; Dikkes, P; Li, E; Tsai, L H

    1997-01-01

    The adult mammalian cortex is characterized by a distinct laminar structure generated through a well-defined pattern of neuronal migration. Successively generated neurons are layered in an "inside-out" manner to produce six cortical laminae. We demonstrate here that p35, the neuronal-specific activator of cyclin-dependent kinase 5, plays a key role in proper neuronal migration. Mice lacking p35, and thus p35/cdk5 kinase activity, display severe cortical lamination defects and suffer from sporadic adult lethality and seizures. Histological examination reveals that the mutant mice lack the characteristic laminated structure of the cortex. Neuronal birth-dating experiments indicate a reversed packing order of cortical neurons such that earlier born neurons reside in superficial layers and later generated neurons occupy deep layers. The phenotype of p35 mutant mice thus demonstrates that the formation of cortical laminar structure depends on the action of the p35/cdk5 kinase.

  10. Network Receptive Field Modeling Reveals Extensive Integration and Multi-feature Selectivity in Auditory Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Willmore, Ben D. B.; Cui, Zhanfeng; Schnupp, Jan W. H.; King, Andrew J.

    2016-01-01

    Cortical sensory neurons are commonly characterized using the receptive field, the linear dependence of their response on the stimulus. In primary auditory cortex neurons can be characterized by their spectrotemporal receptive fields, the spectral and temporal features of a sound that linearly drive a neuron. However, receptive fields do not capture the fact that the response of a cortical neuron results from the complex nonlinear network in which it is embedded. By fitting a nonlinear feedforward network model (a network receptive field) to cortical responses to natural sounds, we reveal that primary auditory cortical neurons are sensitive over a substantially larger spectrotemporal domain than is seen in their standard spectrotemporal receptive fields. Furthermore, the network receptive field, a parsimonious network consisting of 1–7 sub-receptive fields that interact nonlinearly, consistently better predicts neural responses to auditory stimuli than the standard receptive fields. The network receptive field reveals separate excitatory and inhibitory sub-fields with different nonlinear properties, and interaction of the sub-fields gives rise to important operations such as gain control and conjunctive feature detection. The conjunctive effects, where neurons respond only if several specific features are present together, enable increased selectivity for particular complex spectrotemporal structures, and may constitute an important stage in sound recognition. In conclusion, we demonstrate that fitting auditory cortical neural responses with feedforward network models expands on simple linear receptive field models in a manner that yields substantially improved predictive power and reveals key nonlinear aspects of cortical processing, while remaining easy to interpret in a physiological context. PMID:27835647

  11. Network Receptive Field Modeling Reveals Extensive Integration and Multi-feature Selectivity in Auditory Cortical Neurons.

    PubMed

    Harper, Nicol S; Schoppe, Oliver; Willmore, Ben D B; Cui, Zhanfeng; Schnupp, Jan W H; King, Andrew J

    2016-11-01

    Cortical sensory neurons are commonly characterized using the receptive field, the linear dependence of their response on the stimulus. In primary auditory cortex neurons can be characterized by their spectrotemporal receptive fields, the spectral and temporal features of a sound that linearly drive a neuron. However, receptive fields do not capture the fact that the response of a cortical neuron results from the complex nonlinear network in which it is embedded. By fitting a nonlinear feedforward network model (a network receptive field) to cortical responses to natural sounds, we reveal that primary auditory cortical neurons are sensitive over a substantially larger spectrotemporal domain than is seen in their standard spectrotemporal receptive fields. Furthermore, the network receptive field, a parsimonious network consisting of 1-7 sub-receptive fields that interact nonlinearly, consistently better predicts neural responses to auditory stimuli than the standard receptive fields. The network receptive field reveals separate excitatory and inhibitory sub-fields with different nonlinear properties, and interaction of the sub-fields gives rise to important operations such as gain control and conjunctive feature detection. The conjunctive effects, where neurons respond only if several specific features are present together, enable increased selectivity for particular complex spectrotemporal structures, and may constitute an important stage in sound recognition. In conclusion, we demonstrate that fitting auditory cortical neural responses with feedforward network models expands on simple linear receptive field models in a manner that yields substantially improved predictive power and reveals key nonlinear aspects of cortical processing, while remaining easy to interpret in a physiological context.

  12. In utero Electroporation followed by Primary Neuronal Culture for Studying Gene Function in Subset of Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Rice, Heather; Suth, Seiyam; Cavanaugh, William; Bai, Jilin; Young-Pearse, Tracy L.

    2010-01-01

    In vitro study of primary neuronal cultures allows for quantitative analyses of neurite outgrowth. In order to study how genetic alterations affect neuronal process outgrowth, shRNA or cDNA constructs can be introduced into primary neurons via chemical transfection or viral transduction. However, with primary cortical cells, a heterogeneous pool of cell types (glutamatergic neurons from different layers, inhibitory neurons, glial cells) are transfected using these methods. The use of in utero electroporation to introduce DNA constructs in the embryonic rodent cortex allows for certain subsets of cells to be targeted: while electroporation of early embryonic cortex targets deep layers of the cortex, electroporation at late embryonic timepoints targets more superficial layers. Further, differential placement of electrodes across the heads of individual embryos results in the targeting of dorsal-medial versus ventral-lateral regions of the cortex. Following electroporation, transfected cells can be dissected out, dissociated, and plated in vitro for quantitative analysis of neurite outgrowth. Here, we provide a step-by-step method to quantitatively measure neuronal process outgrowth in subsets of cortical cells. The basic protocol for in utero electroporation has been described in detail in two other JoVE articles from the Kriegstein lab 1, 2. We will provide an overview of our protocol for in utero electroporation, focusing on the most important details, followed by a description of our protocol that applies in utero electroporation to the study of gene function in neuronal process outgrowth. PMID:20972409

  13. Coordinated Plasticity between Barrel Cortical Glutamatergic and GABAergic Neurons during Associative Memory

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Fenxia; Gao, Zilong; Chen, Pin; Huang, Li; Wang, Dangui; Chen, Na; Wu, Ruixiang; Feng, Jing; Cui, Shan; Lu, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Neural plasticity is associated with memory formation. The coordinated refinement and interaction between cortical glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons remain elusive in associative memory, which we examine in a mouse model of associative learning. In the mice that show odorant-induced whisker motion after pairing whisker and odor stimulations, the barrel cortical glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons are recruited to encode the newly learnt odor signal alongside the innate whisker signal. These glutamatergic neurons are functionally upregulated, and GABAergic neurons are refined in a homeostatic manner. The mutual innervations between these glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons are upregulated. The analyses by high throughput sequencing show that certain microRNAs related to regulating synapses and neurons are involved in this cross-modal reflex. Thus, the coactivation of the sensory cortices through epigenetic processes recruits their glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons to be the associative memory cells as well as drive their coordinated refinements toward the optimal state for the storage of the associated signals. PMID:28070425

  14. Extraction and analysis of neuron firing signals from deep cortical video microscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Kerekes, Ryan A; Blundon, Jay

    2014-01-01

    We introduce a method for extracting and analyzing neuronal activity time signals from video of the cortex of a live animal. The signals correspond to the firing activity of individual cortical neurons. Activity signals are based on the changing fluorescence of calcium indicators in the cells over time. We propose a cell segmentation method that relies on a user-specified center point, from which the signal extraction method proceeds. A stabilization approach is used to reduce tissue motion in the video. The extracted signal is then processed to flatten the baseline and detect action potentials. We show results from applying the method to a cortical video of a live mouse.

  15. Elevated correlations in neuronal ensembles of mouse auditory cortex following parturition.

    PubMed

    Rothschild, Gideon; Cohen, Lior; Mizrahi, Adi; Nelken, Israel

    2013-07-31

    The auditory cortex is malleable by experience. Previous studies of auditory plasticity have described experience-dependent changes in response profiles of single neurons or changes in global tonotopic organization. However, experience-dependent changes in the dynamics of local neural populations have remained unexplored. In this study, we examined the influence of a dramatic yet natural experience in the life of female mice, giving birth and becoming a mother on single neurons and neuronal ensembles in the primary auditory cortex (A1). Using in vivo two-photon calcium imaging and electrophysiological recordings from layer 2/3 in A1 of mothers and age-matched virgin mice, we monitored changes in the responses to a set of artificial and natural sounds. Population dynamics underwent large changes as measured by pairwise and higher-order correlations, with noise correlations increasing as much as twofold in lactating mothers. Concomitantly, changes in response properties of single neurons were modest and selective. Remarkably, despite the large changes in correlations, information about stimulus identity remained essentially the same in the two groups. Our results demonstrate changes in the correlation structure of neuronal activity as a result of a natural life event.

  16. Function and regulation of Rnd proteins in cortical projection neuron migration

    PubMed Central

    Azzarelli, Roberta; Guillemot, François; Pacary, Emilie

    2015-01-01

    The mammalian cerebral cortex contains a high variety of neuronal subtypes that acquire precise spatial locations and form long or short-range connections to establish functional neuronal circuits. During embryonic development, cortical projection neurons are generated in the areas lining the lateral ventricles and they subsequently undergo radial migration to reach the position of their final maturation within the cortical plate. The control of the neuroblast migratory behavior and the coordination of the migration process with other neurogenic events such as cell cycle exit, differentiation and final maturation are crucial to normal brain development. Among the key regulators of cortical neuron migration, the small GTP binding proteins of the Rho family and the atypical Rnd members play important roles in integrating intracellular signaling pathways into changes in cytoskeletal dynamics and motility behavior. Here we review the role of Rnd proteins during cortical neuronal migration and we discuss both the upstream mechanisms that regulate Rnd protein activity and the downstream molecular pathways that mediate Rnd effects on cell cytoskeleton. PMID:25705175

  17. Deciphering Neuron-Glia Compartmentalization in Cortical Energy Metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Jolivet, Renaud; Magistretti, Pierre J.; Weber, Bruno

    2009-01-01

    Energy demand is an important constraint on neural signaling. Several methods have been proposed to assess the energy budget of the brain based on a bottom-up approach in which the energy demand of individual biophysical processes are first estimated independently and then summed up to compute the brain's total energy budget. Here, we address this question using a novel approach that makes use of published datasets that reported average cerebral glucose and oxygen utilization in humans and rodents during different activation states. Our approach allows us (1) to decipher neuron-glia compartmentalization in energy metabolism and (2) to compute a precise state-dependent energy budget for the brain. Under the assumption that the fraction of energy used for signaling is proportional to the cycling of neurotransmitters, we find that in the activated state, most of the energy (∼80%) is oxidatively produced and consumed by neurons to support neuron-to-neuron signaling. Glial cells, while only contributing for a small fraction to energy production (∼6%), actually take up a significant fraction of glucose (50% or more) from the blood and provide neurons with glucose-derived energy substrates. Our results suggest that glycolysis occurs for a significant part in astrocytes whereas most of the oxygen is utilized in neurons. As a consequence, a transfer of glucose-derived metabolites from glial cells to neurons has to take place. Furthermore, we find that the amplitude of this transfer is correlated to (1) the activity level of the brain; the larger the activity, the more metabolites are shuttled from glia to neurons and (2) the oxidative activity in astrocytes; with higher glial pyruvate metabolism, less metabolites are shuttled from glia to neurons. While some of the details of a bottom-up biophysical approach have to be simplified, our method allows for a straightforward assessment of the brain's energy budget from macroscopic measurements with minimal underlying

  18. Chronic haloperidol increases voltage-gated Na+ currents in mouse cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Chen, Weiqiang; Zhu, Fangfang; Guo, Jingfang; Sheng, Jiangtao; Li, Wenli; Zhao, Xiangfeng; Wang, Gefei; Li, Kangsheng

    2014-07-18

    Typical antipsychotics are characterized by extrapyramidal syndrome (EPS). Previous studies demonstrated that typical antipsychotics could inhibit neuronal voltage-gated sodium channel (VGSC). However, EPS typically emerge only upon prolonged exposure. As a result, we examined effects of haloperidol, a prototype typical antipsychotic, on neuronal VGSC upon incubation for varying duration. Briefly, VGSC currents were activated and recorded using a whole-cell patch-clamp technique in primary culture of mouse cortical neurons. VGSC activity was inhibited by acute haloperidol exposure (for minutes), but enhanced in a time- and concentration-dependent manner by chronic haloperidol exposure (for hours). The effects of chronic haloperidol were associated with increased expression of VGSC subunits as well as corresponding electrophysiological channel properties. In summary, we found enhanced VGSC currents upon chronic haloperidol exposure in cortical neurons in contrast to inhibition by acute haloperidol exposure. Such a results may contribute to EPS of typical antipsychotics.

  19. NEUROD2 Regulates Stim1 Expression and Store-Operated Calcium Entry in Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Akkaya, Cansu; Bayam, Efil

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Calcium signaling controls many key processes in neurons, including gene expression, axon guidance, and synaptic plasticity. In contrast to calcium influx through voltage- or neurotransmitter-gated channels, regulatory pathways that control store-operated calcium entry (SOCE) in neurons are poorly understood. Here, we report a transcriptional control of Stim1 (stromal interaction molecule 1) gene, which is a major sensor of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) calcium levels and a regulator of SOCE. By using a genome-wide chromatin immunoprecipitation and sequencing approach in mice, we find that NEUROD2, a neurogenic transcription factor, binds to an intronic element within the Stim1 gene. We show that NEUROD2 limits Stim1 expression in cortical neurons and consequently fine-tunes the SOCE response upon depletion of ER calcium. Our findings reveal a novel mechanism that regulates neuronal calcium homeostasis during cortical development. PMID:28303257

  20. Synaptic responses of neurons in heterotopic gray matter in an animal model of cortical dysgenesis.

    PubMed

    Smith, B N; Dudek, F E; Roper, S N

    1999-11-01

    Neuronal heterotopia is a malformation of cortical development that is closely associated with epilepsy in humans. Despite emerging interest in the structure and function of the heterotopic cortex, little is known about the membrane properties and synaptic connections of these displaced neurons. We used whole-cell patch-clamp and extracellular field potential recordings from heterotopic neurons in slices from young adult rats with experimentally induced cortical dysgenesis to determine if local synaptic connections were present in nodular heterotopia. Complex synaptic responses were observed after electrical stimulation of adjacent white matter. The results suggest that neurons in nodular heterotopic gray matter can form local excitatory and inhibitory synaptic connections and may participate in epileptiform events.

  1. An information transmission measure for the analysis of effective connectivity among cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Law, Andrew J; Sharma, Gaurav; Schieber, Marc H

    2010-01-01

    We present a methodology for detecting effective connections between simultaneously recorded neurons using an information transmission measure to identify the presence and direction of information flow from one neuron to another. Using simulated and experimentally-measured data, we evaluate the performance of our proposed method and compare it to the traditional transfer entropy approach. In simulations, our measure of information transmission outperforms transfer entropy in identifying the effective connectivity structure of a neuron ensemble. For experimentally recorded data, where ground truth is unavailable, the proposed method also yields a more plausible effective connectivity structure than transfer entropy.

  2. Imaging spinal neuron ensembles active during locomotion with genetically encoded calcium indicators.

    PubMed

    Hinckley, Christopher A; Pfaff, Samuel L

    2013-03-01

    Advances in molecular-genetic tools for labeling neuronal subtypes, and the emerging development of robust genetic probes for neural activity, are likely to revolutionize our understanding of the functional organization of neural circuits. In principle, these tools should be able to detect activity at cellular resolution for large ensembles of identified neuron types as they participate in specific behaviors. This report describes the use of genetically encoded calcium indicators (GECIs), combined with two-photon microscopy, to characterize V1 interneurons, known to be critical for setting the duration of the step cycle. All V1 interneurons arise from a common precursor population and express engrailed-1 (En1). Our data show that although neighboring interneurons that arise from the same developmental lineage and share many features, such as projection patterns and neurotransmitter profiles, they are not irrevocably committed to having the same pattern of activity.

  3. Magnetic Tunnel Junction Mimics Stochastic Cortical Spiking Neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sengupta, Abhronil; Panda, Priyadarshini; Wijesinghe, Parami; Kim, Yusung; Roy, Kaushik

    2016-07-01

    Brain-inspired computing architectures attempt to mimic the computations performed in the neurons and the synapses in the human brain in order to achieve its efficiency in learning and cognitive tasks. In this work, we demonstrate the mapping of the probabilistic spiking nature of pyramidal neurons in the cortex to the stochastic switching behavior of a Magnetic Tunnel Junction in presence of thermal noise. We present results to illustrate the efficiency of neuromorphic systems based on such probabilistic neurons for pattern recognition tasks in presence of lateral inhibition and homeostasis. Such stochastic MTJ neurons can also potentially provide a direct mapping to the probabilistic computing elements in Belief Networks for performing regenerative tasks.

  4. TETRAMETHRIN AND DDT INHIBIT SPONTANEOUS FIRING IN CORTICAL NEURONAL NETWORKS

    EPA Science Inventory

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

  5. Magnetic Tunnel Junction Mimics Stochastic Cortical Spiking Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Sengupta, Abhronil; Panda, Priyadarshini; Wijesinghe, Parami; Kim, Yusung; Roy, Kaushik

    2016-01-01

    Brain-inspired computing architectures attempt to mimic the computations performed in the neurons and the synapses in the human brain in order to achieve its efficiency in learning and cognitive tasks. In this work, we demonstrate the mapping of the probabilistic spiking nature of pyramidal neurons in the cortex to the stochastic switching behavior of a Magnetic Tunnel Junction in presence of thermal noise. We present results to illustrate the efficiency of neuromorphic systems based on such probabilistic neurons for pattern recognition tasks in presence of lateral inhibition and homeostasis. Such stochastic MTJ neurons can also potentially provide a direct mapping to the probabilistic computing elements in Belief Networks for performing regenerative tasks. PMID:27443913

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2008-01-01

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

  7. Alterations in cortical network oscillations and parvalbumin neurons in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez-Burgos, Guillermo; Cho, Raymond Y; Lewis, David A

    2015-06-15

    Cognitive deficits are a core clinical feature of schizophrenia but respond poorly to available medications. Thus, understanding the neural basis of these deficits is crucial for the development of new therapeutic interventions. The types of cognitive processes affected in schizophrenia are thought to depend on the precisely timed transmission of information in cortical regions via synchronous oscillations at gamma band frequency. Here, we review 1) data from clinical studies suggesting that induction of frontal cortex gamma oscillations during tasks that engage cognitive or complex perceptual functions is attenuated in schizophrenia; 2) findings from basic neuroscience studies highlighting the features of parvalbumin-positive interneurons that are critical for gamma oscillation production; and 3) results from recent postmortem human brain studies providing additional molecular bases for parvalbumin-positive interneuron alterations in prefrontal cortical circuitry in schizophrenia.

  8. Alterations in Cortical Network Oscillations and Parvalbumin Neurons in Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Gonzalez-Burgos, Guillermo; Cho, Raymond Y; Lewis, David A

    2015-01-01

    Cognitive deficits are a core clinical feature of schizophrenia but respond poorly to available medications. Thus, understanding the neural basis of these deficits is crucial for the development of new therapeutic interventions. The types of cognitive processes affected in schizophrenia are thought to depend on the precisely timed transmission of information in cortical regions via synchronous oscillations at gamma band frequency. Here, we review 1) data from clinical studies suggesting that induction of frontal cortex gamma oscillations during tasks that engage cognitive or complex perceptual functions is attenuated in schizophrenia, 2) findings from basic neuroscience studies highlighting the features of parvalbumin-positive (PV) interneurons that are critical for gamma oscillation production and 3) results from recent postmortem human brain studies providing additional molecular bases for PV interneuron alterations in prefrontal cortical circuitry in schizophrenia. PMID:25863358

  9. Dependence of Cortical Plasticity on Correlated Activity of Single Neurons and on Behavioral Context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahissar, Ehud; Vaadia, Eilon; Ahissar, Merav; Bergman, Hagai; Arieli, Amos; Abeles, Moshe

    1992-09-01

    It has not been possible to analyze the cellular mechanisms underlying learning in behaving mammals because of the difficulties in recording intracellularly from awake animals. Therefore, in the present study of neuronal plasticity in behaving monkeys, the net effect of a single neuron on another neuron (the "functional connection") was evaluated by cross-correlating the times of firing of the two neurons. When two neurons were induced to fire together within a short time window, the functional connection between them was potentiated, and when simultaneous firing was prevented, the connection was depressed. These modifications were strongly dependent on the behavioral context of the stimuli that induced them. The results indicate that changes in the temporal contingency between neurons are often necessary, but not sufficient, for cortical plasticity in the adult monkey: behavioral relevance is required.

  10. Ginkgolides protect primary cortical neurons from potassium cyanide-induced hypoxic injury.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Li; Xu, You Jia; Du, Fang; Qian, Zhong Ming

    2007-06-01

    In this study, we investigated the effects of ginkgolides (Gins A, B, C and J), the main constituent of the non-flavone fraction of EGb 761, on hypoxic injury induced by potassium cyanide (KCN) in primary cortical neurons. The neurons were pretreated with or without ginkgolides for 24 h before incubation with KCN for 4 h. Cell viability was then determined by a MTT (3-[4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl]-2,5-diphenyletrazolium bromide] assay and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release from neurons into the medium was measured. The morphological changes of neurons were observed under inverse microscopy and electron microscopy. The results demonstrated that KCN (0.05 mmol/l) significantly decreased cell viability and increased LDH release (P < 0.05 versus the control). The characteristic changes of neuronal morphology induced by KCN were observed. However, pretreatment of neurons with 37.5 microg/ml of ginkgolides (ginkgolides + KCN group) led to a significant increase in cell viability, a decrease in LDH release (P < 0.05 versus the KCN group) and a remarkable improvement in cellular morphology in hypoxic neurons compared with the KCN group. The data suggested that ginkgolides have a significant role to protect the primary cortical neurons from hypoxic injury induced by KCN.

  11. Statistical inference for assessing functional connectivity of neuronal ensembles with sparse spiking data.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhe; Putrino, David F; Ghosh, Soumya; Barbieri, Riccardo; Brown, Emery N

    2011-04-01

    The ability to accurately infer functional connectivity between ensemble neurons using experimentally acquired spike train data is currently an important research objective in computational neuroscience. Point process generalized linear models and maximum likelihood estimation have been proposed as effective methods for the identification of spiking dependency between neurons. However, unfavorable experimental conditions occasionally results in insufficient data collection due to factors such as low neuronal firing rates or brief recording periods, and in these cases, the standard maximum likelihood estimate becomes unreliable. The present studies compares the performance of different statistical inference procedures when applied to the estimation of functional connectivity in neuronal assemblies with sparse spiking data. Four inference methods were compared: maximum likelihood estimation, penalized maximum likelihood estimation, using either l(2) or l(1) regularization, and hierarchical Bayesian estimation based on a variational Bayes algorithm. Algorithmic performances were compared using well-established goodness-of-fit measures in benchmark simulation studies, and the hierarchical Bayesian approach performed favorably when compared with the other algorithms, and this approach was then successfully applied to real spiking data recorded from the cat motor cortex. The identification of spiking dependencies in physiologically acquired data was encouraging, since their sparse nature would have previously precluded them from successful analysis using traditional methods.

  12. Cortical neuronal cytoskeletal changes associated with FIV infection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jacobson, S.; Henriksen, S. J.; Prospero-Garcia, O.; Phillips, T. R.; Elder, J. H.; Young, W. G.; Bloom, F. E.; Fox, H. S.

    1997-01-01

    HIV-1 infection is often complicated by central nervous system (CNS) dysfunction. Degenerative neuronal changes as well as neuronal loss have been documented in individuals with AIDS. Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) infection of cats provides a model for both the immune and the central nervous system manifestations of HIV infection of humans. In this study we have examined neurons in the frontal cortex of feline immunodeficiency virus-infected cats and controls for immunoreactivity with SMI 32, an antibody recognizing a non-phosphorylated epitope on neurofilaments. We noted a significant increase in the number of immunoreactive pyramidal cells in infected animals compared to controls. The changes seen in the neuronal cytoskeleton as a consequence of the inoculation with FIV were similar to those seen in humans undergoing the normal aging process as well as those suffering from neurological diseases, including Alzheimer's and dementia pugilistica. The changes we noted in the feline brain were also similar to that reported in animals with traumatic injuries or with spontaneously occurring or induced motor neuron diseases, suggesting that the increase in reactivity represents a deleterious effect of FIV on the central nervous system.

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

    PubMed

    Barber, Melissa; Pierani, Alessandra

    2016-08-01

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

  14. Flicker adaptation of low-level cortical visual neurons contributes to temporal dilation

    PubMed Central

    Ortega, Laura; Guzman-Martinez, Emmanuel; Grabowecky, Marcia; Suzuki, Satoru

    2013-01-01

    Several seconds of adaptation to a flickered stimulus causes a subsequent brief static stimulus to appear longer in duration. Non-sensory factors such as increased arousal and attention have been thought to mediate this flicker-based temporal-dilation aftereffect. Here we provide evidence that adaptation of low-level cortical visual neurons contributes to this aftereffect. The aftereffect was significantly reduced by a 45° change in Gabor orientation between adaptation and test. Because orientation-tuning bandwidths are smaller in lower-level cortical visual areas and are approximately 45° in human V1, the result suggests that flicker adaptation of orientation-tuned V1 neurons contributes to the temporal-dilation aftereffect. The aftereffect was abolished when the adaptor and test stimuli were presented to different eyes. Because eye preferences are strong in V1 but diminish in higher-level visual areas, the eye specificity of the aftereffect corroborates the involvement of low-level cortical visual neurons. Our results thus suggest that flicker adaptation of low-level cortical visual neurons contributes to expanding visual duration. Furthermore, this temporal-dilation aftereffect dissociates from the previously reported temporal-constriction aftereffect on the basis of the differences in their orientation and flicker-frequency selectivity, suggesting that the visual system possesses at least two distinct and potentially complementary mechanisms for adaptively coding perceived duration. PMID:22866761

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-10-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-10-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

    2009-01-01

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

  18. An ensemble of specifically targeted proteins stabilizes cortical microtubules in the human parasite Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jun; He, Yudou; Benmerzouga, Imaan; Sullivan, William J.; Morrissette, Naomi S.; Murray, John M.; Hu, Ke

    2016-01-01

    Although all microtubules within a single cell are polymerized from virtually identical subunits, different microtubule populations carry out specialized and diverse functions, including directional transport, force generation, and cellular morphogenesis. Functional differentiation requires specific targeting of associated proteins to subsets or even subregions of these polymers. The cytoskeleton of Toxoplasma gondii, an important human parasite, contains at least five distinct tubulin-based structures. In this work, we define the differential localization of proteins along the cortical microtubules of T. gondii, established during daughter biogenesis and regulated by protein expression and exchange. These proteins distinguish cortical from mitotic spindle microtubules, even though the assembly of these subsets is contemporaneous during cell division. Finally, proteins associated with cortical microtubules collectively protect the stability of the polymers with a remarkable degree of functional redundancy. PMID:26680740

  19. The efferent projections of neurons in the white matter of different cortical areas of the adult rat.

    PubMed

    Meyer, G; Gonzalez-Hernandez, T; Galindo-Mireles, D; Castañeyra-Perdomo, A; Ferres-Torres, R

    1991-01-01

    Injection of Fast Blue into different cortical areas (frontal, parietal, anterior and posterior cingulate cortex) revealed that neurons in the white matter (interstitial neurons) give rise to association fibers which project mostly to the gray matter of the overlying cytoarchitectonic area, but which may extend also over different cytoarchitectonic areas. The rostrocaudal extent of the projecting axons was up to 1 mm in the frontal and parietal cortex, and up to 3.5 mm in the cingulate cortex. Concurrent processing for dihydronicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate diaphorase (NADPH-d) histochemistry showed that 70% of cortically projecting interstitial neurons were NADPH-d-positive. An analysis of neuronal morphology suggests that the FasT-Blue-labeled, NADPH-d-negative neurons may represent displaced pyramidal neurons of layer VIb; the Fast-Blue-labeled and NADPH-d-positive neurons have bipolar or multipolar dendritic trees, constituting a population of nonpyramidal interstitial neurons that project into the cortical gray matter.

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

    PubMed

    Nafar, Firoozeh; Mearow, Karen M

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Deleuze, Charlotte; Pazienti, Antonio; Bacci, Alberto

    2014-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-02-01

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

  3. Survival of Adhering Cortical Neurons on Polyethylenimine Micropatterns

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2001-10-25

    survive in a physiological surrounding over prolonged periods of time. The development of a cultured neuron probe [1] is considered to be an...J. Biomed. Microdev., vol. 1:1, pp. 49-64, 1998. [11] C.A. Thomas, P.A. Springer, G.E. Loeb, Y. Berwald- Netter , and L.M. Okun, “A miniature

  4. Neuronal heterotopia with capillary penetration of neurons and cortical dysplasia in a patient with complex partial seizures. Case report.

    PubMed

    Jay, V; Becker, L E; Otsubo, H; Hwang, P; Hoffman, H J; Armstrong, D C

    1993-04-01

    Unusual pathological findings were encountered in a temporal lobectomy specimen from a 9-year-old boy with intractable complex partial seizures. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed an enlarged left temporal lobe, with diffuse high signal intensity over the cortex and poor gray-white differentiation on T2-weighted imaging; single-photon emission computerized tomography showed decreased blood flow. Active epileptiform discharges were identified in the left temporal lobe with focal slow waves and generalized epileptiform paroxysms. Pathologically, the cortex revealed changes of focal cortical dysplasia with extensive disorganization of neuronal morphology, layering, and orientation as well as focal polymicrogyria. The cortical-white matter junction was indistinct with extensive neuronal heterotopias in the white matter. Large pale balloon cells akin to those seen in tuberous sclerosis were found scattered within the cortex and white matter. The most striking finding was that of a heterotopic nodule in the white matter, which revealed abnormal neurons with penetration of cell bodies by capillaries. Ultrastructurally, there were no degenerative changes in these neurons, and this unusual phenomenon is attributed to a developmental disturbance affecting neuronal, glial, and vascular elements.

  5. Influence of Ionic Conductances on Spike Timing Reliability of Cortical Neurons for Suprathreshold Rhythmic Inputs

    PubMed Central

    Schreiber, Susanne; Fellous, Jean-Marc; Tiesinga, Paul; Sejnowski, Terrence J.

    2010-01-01

    Spike timing reliability of neuronal responses depends on the frequency content of the input. We investigate how intrinsic properties of cortical neurons affect spike timing reliability in response to rhythmic inputs of suprathreshold mean. Analyzing reliability of conductance-based cortical model neurons on the basis of a correlation measure, we show two aspects of how ionic conductances influence spike timing reliability. First, they set the preferred frequency for spike timing reliability, which in accordance with the resonance effect of spike timing reliability is well approximated by the firing rate of a neuron in response to the DC component in the input. We demonstrate that a slow potassium current can modulate the spike timing frequency preference over a broad range of frequencies. This result is confirmed experimentally by dynamic-clamp recordings from rat prefrontal cortical neurons in vitro. Second, we provide evidence that ionic conductances also influence spike timing beyond changes in preferred frequency. Cells with the same DC firing rate exhibit more reliable spike timing at the preferred frequency and its harmonics if the slow potassium current is larger and its kinetics are faster, whereas a larger persistent sodium current impairs reliability. We predict that potassium channels are an efficient target for neuromodulators that can tune spike timing reliability to a given rhythmic input. PMID:14507985

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-10-31

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

  7. Tech: a RhoA GEF selectively expressed in hippocampal and cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Marx, Ruth; Henderson, Jennifer; Wang, James; Baraban, Jay M

    2005-02-01

    Recent studies implicating the Rho family of small G proteins in the regulation of neuronal morphology have focused attention on identifying key components of Rho signaling pathways in neurons. To this end, we have conducted studies aimed at defining the localization and function of Tech, a Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) family member that is highly enriched in brain. We have found that Tech is selectively expressed in cortical and hippocampal neurons with prominent Tech immunostaining apparent in the cell bodies and dendrites of these cells. In vitro studies with prototypical members of the major Rho subfamilies, RhoA, Rac1 and Cdc42, indicate that Tech binds selectively to and activates RhoA. To assess whether Tech may be involved in the regulation of neuronal morphology, we examined the effects of Tech constructs on the morphology of cortical neurons grown in primary culture. We found that a constitutively active Tech construct, Tech 245DeltaC, decreases the number of dendritic processes present on these neurons. This reduction appears to be mediated by activation of RhoA as it is blocked by insertion of a point mutation into the DH domain of Tech which blocks its ability to activate RhoA or coexpression of a dominant negative RhoA construct. As Tech protein levels increase during post-natal development and remain at peak levels into adulthood, these results indicate that Tech regulates RhoA signaling pathways in developing and mature forebrain neurons.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-05-22

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

  9. Methamphetamine induces heme oxygenase-1 expression in cortical neurons and glia to prevent its toxicity.

    PubMed

    Huang, Ya-Ni; Wu, Ching-Hsiang; Lin, Tzu-Chao; Wang, Jia-Yi

    2009-11-01

    The impairment of cognitive and motor functions in humans and animals caused by methamphetamine (METH) administration underscores the importance of METH toxicity in cortical neurons. The heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) exerts a cytoprotective effect against various neuronal injures; however, it remains unclear whether HO-1 is involved in METH-induced toxicity. We used primary cortical neuron/glia cocultures to explore the role of HO-1 in METH-induced toxicity. Exposure of cultured cells to various concentrations of METH (0.1, 0.5, 1, 3, 5, and 10 mM) led to cytotoxicity in a concentration-dependent manner. A METH concentration of 5 mM, which caused 50% of neuronal death and glial activation, was chosen for subsequent experiments. RT-PCR and Western blot analysis revealed that METH significantly induced HO-1 mRNA and protein expression, both preceded cell death. Double and triple immunofluorescence staining further identified HO-1-positive cells as activated astrocytes, microglia, and viable neurons, but not dying neurons. Inhibition of the p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway significantly blocked HO-1 induction by METH and aggravated METH neurotoxicity. Inhibition of HO activity using tin protoporphyrine IX significantly reduced HO activity and exacerbated METH neurotoxicity. However, prior induction of HO-1 using cobalt protoporphyrine IX partially protected neurons from METH toxicity. Taken together, our results suggest that induction of HO-1 by METH via the p38 signaling pathway may be protective, albeit insufficient to completely protect cortical neurons from METH toxicity.

  10. Exacerbation of Apoptosis of Cortical Neurons Following Traumatic Brain Injury in Par-4 Transgenic Mice

    PubMed Central

    Payette, Daniel J; Xie, Jun; Shirwany, Najeeb; Guo, Qing

    2008-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a significant clinical problem, yet few effective strategies for treating it have emerged. People that sustain and survive a TBI are left with significant cognitive, behavioral, and communicative disabilities. Apoptotic neuronal death occurs following TBI. Prostate apoptosis response-4 (Par-4) is a death domain-containing protein initially characterized as a critical regulator of apoptosis in prostate cancer cells. We have recently generated and characterized Par-4 transgenic mice in which the expression of the par-4 transgene was limited to cells of neuronal lineage. We now provide evidence that, in cortical neurons from these mice, Par-4 drastically increases apoptotic neuronal death in both in vitro and in vivo models of TBI. In vitro experiments were performed in 7-day-old primary cultures of cortical neurons using a previously published, scratch-induced mechanical trauma model. Neurons that overexpress Par-4 showed not only a significant decrease in overall neuron survival after TBI compared to wild-type cells, but also exhibited a sharper decrease in mitochondrial transmembrane potential, a higher degree of free radical accumulation, and earlier activation of caspase-3 than wild-type cells did. In vivo experiments were performed utilizing a weight drop TBI model. A significantly increased volume of cortical injury and exacerbated activation of caspase-3 were observed in Par-4 transgenic mice when compared to those in wild-type mice. These data suggests that aberrant Par-4 expression exacerbates neuronal cell death following TBI by altering mitochondrial function, enhancing oxidative damage, and execution of apoptosis via caspase activation. PMID:18784822

  11. Methamphetamine induces heme oxygenase-1 expression in cortical neurons and glia to prevent its toxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Huang, Y.-N.; Wu, C.-H.; Lin, T.-C.; Wang, J.-Y.

    2009-11-01

    The impairment of cognitive and motor functions in humans and animals caused by methamphetamine (METH) administration underscores the importance of METH toxicity in cortical neurons. The heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) exerts a cytoprotective effect against various neuronal injures; however, it remains unclear whether HO-1 is involved in METH-induced toxicity. We used primary cortical neuron/glia cocultures to explore the role of HO-1 in METH-induced toxicity. Exposure of cultured cells to various concentrations of METH (0.1, 0.5, 1, 3, 5, and 10 mM) led to cytotoxicity in a concentration-dependent manner. A METH concentration of 5 mM, which caused 50% of neuronal death and glial activation, was chosen for subsequent experiments. RT-PCR and Western blot analysis revealed that METH significantly induced HO-1 mRNA and protein expression, both preceded cell death. Double and triple immunofluorescence staining further identified HO-1-positive cells as activated astrocytes, microglia, and viable neurons, but not dying neurons. Inhibition of the p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway significantly blocked HO-1 induction by METH and aggravated METH neurotoxicity. Inhibition of HO activity using tin protoporphyrine IX significantly reduced HO activity and exacerbated METH neurotoxicity. However, prior induction of HO-1 using cobalt protoporphyrine IX partially protected neurons from METH toxicity. Taken together, our results suggest that induction of HO-1 by METH via the p38 signaling pathway may be protective, albeit insufficient to completely protect cortical neurons from METH toxicity.

  12. Functional properties of in vitro excitatory cortical neurons derived from human pluripotent stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Magnani, Dario; Hardingham, Giles E.; Chandran, Siddharthan

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The in vitro derivation of regionally defined human neuron types from patient‐derived stem cells is now established as a resource to investigate human development and disease. Characterization of such neurons initially focused on the expression of developmentally regulated transcription factors and neural markers, in conjunction with the development of protocols to direct and chart the fate of differentiated neurons. However, crucial to the understanding and exploitation of this technology is to determine the degree to which neurons recapitulate the key functional features exhibited by their native counterparts, essential for determining their usefulness in modelling human physiology and disease in vitro. Here, we review the emerging data concerning functional properties of human pluripotent stem cell‐derived excitatory cortical neurons, in the context of both maturation and regional specificity. PMID:26608229

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-01-04

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

  14. Alterations of cortical pyramidal neurons in mice lacking high-affinity nicotinic receptors

    PubMed Central

    Ballesteros-Yáñez, Inmaculada; Benavides-Piccione, Ruth; Bourgeois, Jean-Pierre; Changeux, Jean-Pierre; DeFelipe, Javier

    2010-01-01

    The neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are allosteric membrane proteins involved in multiple cognitive processes, including attention, learning, and memory. The most abundant form of heterooligomeric nAChRs in the brain contains the β2- and α4- subunits and binds nicotinic agonists with high affinity. In the present study, we investigated in the mouse the consequences of the deletion of one of the nAChR components: the β2-subunit (β2−/−) on the microanatomy of cortical pyramidal cells. Using an intracellular injection method, complete basal dendritic arbors of 650 layer III pyramidal neurons were sampled from seven cortical fields, including primary sensory, motor, and associational areas, in both β2−/− and WT animals. We observed that the pyramidal cell phenotype shows significant quantitative differences among different cortical areas in mutant and WT mice. In WT mice, the density of dendritic spines was rather similar in all cortical fields, except in the prelimbic/infralimbic cortex, where it was significantly higher. In the absence of the β2-subunit, the most significant reduction in the density of spines took place in this high-order associational field. Our data suggest that the β2-subunit is involved in the dendritic morphogenesis of pyramidal neurons and, in particular, in the circuits that contribute to the high-order functional connectivity of the cerebral cortex. PMID:20534523

  15. Cortical Hypoexcitation Defines Neuronal Responses in the Immediate Aftermath of Traumatic Brain Injury

    PubMed Central

    Johnstone, Victoria Philippa Anne; Yan, Edwin Bingbing; Alwis, Dasuni Sathsara; Rajan, Ramesh

    2013-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) from a blow to the head is often associated with complex patterns of brain abnormalities that accompany deficits in cognitive and motor function. Previously we reported that a long-term consequence of TBI, induced with a closed-head injury method modelling human car and sporting accidents, is neuronal hyper-excitation in the rat sensory barrel cortex that receives tactile input from the face whiskers. Hyper-excitation occurred only in supra-granular layers and was stronger to complex than simple stimuli. We now examine changes in the immediate aftermath of TBI induced with same injury method. At 24 hours post-trauma significant sensorimotor deficits were observed and characterisation of the cortical population neuronal responses at that time revealed a depth-dependent suppression of neuronal responses, with reduced responses from supragranular layers through to input layer IV, but not in infragranular layers. In addition, increased spontaneous firing rate was recorded in cortical layers IV and V. We postulate that this early post-injury suppression of cortical processing of sensory input accounts for immediate post-trauma sensory morbidity and sets into train events that resolve into long-term cortical hyper-excitability in upper sensory cortex layers that may account for long-term sensory hyper-sensitivity in humans with TBI. PMID:23667624

  16. Development of coherent neuronal activity patterns in mammalian cortical networks: common principles and local hetereogeneity.

    PubMed

    Egorov, Alexei V; Draguhn, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Many mammals are born in a very immature state and develop their rich repertoire of behavioral and cognitive functions postnatally. This development goes in parallel with changes in the anatomical and functional organization of cortical structures which are involved in most complex activities. The emerging spatiotemporal activity patterns in multi-neuronal cortical networks may indeed form a direct neuronal correlate of systemic functions like perception, sensorimotor integration, decision making or memory formation. During recent years, several studies--mostly in rodents--have shed light on the ontogenesis of such highly organized patterns of network activity. While each local network has its own peculiar properties, some general rules can be derived. We therefore review and compare data from the developing hippocampus, neocortex and--as an intermediate region--entorhinal cortex. All cortices seem to follow a characteristic sequence starting with uncorrelated activity in uncoupled single neurons where transient activity seems to have mostly trophic effects. In rodents, before and shortly after birth, cortical networks develop weakly coordinated multineuronal discharges which have been termed synchronous plateau assemblies (SPAs). While these patterns rely mostly on electrical coupling by gap junctions, the subsequent increase in number and maturation of chemical synapses leads to the generation of large-scale coherent discharges. These patterns have been termed giant depolarizing potentials (GDPs) for predominantly GABA-induced events or early network oscillations (ENOs) for mostly glutamatergic bursts, respectively. During the third to fourth postnatal week, cortical areas reach their final activity patterns with distinct network oscillations and highly specific neuronal discharge sequences which support adult behavior. While some of the mechanisms underlying maturation of network activity have been elucidated much work remains to be done in order to fully

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

    PubMed

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

    2003-09-10

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

  18. Correlated activity of cortical neurons survives extensive removal of feedforward sensory input

    PubMed Central

    Shapcott, Katharine A.; Schmiedt, Joscha T.; Saunders, Richard C.; Maier, Alexander; Leopold, David A.; Schmid, Michael C.

    2016-01-01

    A fundamental property of brain function is that the spiking activity of cortical neurons is variable and that some of this variability is correlated between neurons. Correlated activity not due to the stimulus arises from shared input but the neuronal circuit mechanisms that result in these noise correlations are not fully understood. Here we tested in the visual system if correlated variability in mid-level area V4 of visual cortex is altered following extensive lesions of primary visual cortex (V1). To this end we recorded longitudinally the neuronal correlations in area V4 of two behaving macaque monkeys before and after a V1 lesion while the monkeys fixated a grey screen. We found that the correlations of neuronal activity survived the lesions in both monkeys. In one monkey, the correlation of multi-unit spiking signals was strongly increased in the first week post-lesion, while in the second monkey, correlated activity was slightly increased, but not greater than some week-by-week fluctuations observed. The typical drop-off of inter-neuronal correlations with cortical distance was preserved after the lesion. Therefore, as V4 noise correlations remain without feedforward input from V1, these results suggest instead that local and/or feedback input seem to be necessary for correlated activity. PMID:27721468

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

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Jia-jia; Chen, Si; Ouyang, Li-si; Jia, Yu; Liu, Bing-bing; Mu, Shu-hua; Ma, Yu-xin; Wang, Wei-ping; Wei, Jia-you; Li, You-lan; Chen, Zhi; Lei, Wan-long

    2016-01-01

    Striatal neurons can be either projection neurons or interneurons, with each type exhibiting distinct susceptibility to various types of brain damage. In this study, 6-hydroxydopamine was injected into the right medial forebrain bundle to induce dopamine depletion, and/or ibotenic acid was injected into the M1 cortex to induce motor cortex lesions. Immunohistochemistry and western blot assay showed that dopaminergic depletion results in significant loss of striatal projection neurons marked by dopamine- and cyclic adenosine monophosphate-regulated phosphoprotein, molecular weight 32 kDa, calbindin, and μ-opioid receptor, while cortical lesions reversed these pathological changes. After dopaminergic deletion, the number of neuropeptide Y-positive striatal interneurons markedly increased, which was also inhibited by cortical lesioning. No noticeable change in the number of parvalbumin-positive interneurons was found in 6-hydroxydopamine-treated rats. Striatal projection neurons and interneurons show different susceptibility to dopaminergic depletion. Further, cortical lesions inhibit striatal dysfunction and damage induced by 6-hydroxydopamine, which provides a new possibility for clinical treatment of Parkinson's disease. PMID:28197194

  20. Enhancement of synaptic transmission induced by BDNF in cultured cortical neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Jun; Gong, Hui; Zeng, Shaoqun; Li, Yanling; Luo, Qingming

    2005-03-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), like other neurotrophins, has long-term effects on neuronal survival and differentiation; furthermore, BDNF has been reported to exert an acute potentiation of synaptic activity and are critically involved in long-term potentiation (LTP). We found that BDNF rapidly induced potentiation of synaptic activity and an increase in the intracellular Ca2+ concentration in cultured cortical neurons. Within minutes of BDNF application to cultured cortical neurons, spontaneous firing rate was dramatically increased as were the frequency and amplitude of excitatory spontaneous postsynaptic currents (EPSCs). Fura-2 recordings showed that BDNF acutely elicited an increase in intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]c). This effect was partially dependent on [Ca2+]o; The BDNF-induced increase in [Ca2+]c can not be completely blocked by Ca2+-free solution. It was completely blocked by K252a and partially blocked by Cd2+ and TTX. The results demonstrate that BDNF can enhances synaptic transmission and that this effect is accompanied by a rise in [Ca2+]c that requires two route: the release of Ca2+ from intracellular calcium stores and influx of extracellular Ca2+ through voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels in cultured cortical neurons.

  1. Cortical Specializations Underlying Fast Computations.

    PubMed

    Volgushev, Maxim

    2016-04-01

    The time course of behaviorally relevant environmental events sets temporal constraints on neuronal processing. How does the mammalian brain make use of the increasingly complex networks of the neocortex, while making decisions and executing behavioral reactions within a reasonable time? The key parameter determining the speed of computations in neuronal networks is a time interval that neuronal ensembles need to process changes at their input and communicate results of this processing to downstream neurons. Theoretical analysis identified basic requirements for fast processing: use of neuronal populations for encoding, background activity, and fast onset dynamics of action potentials in neurons. Experimental evidence shows that populations of neocortical neurons fulfil these requirements. Indeed, they can change firing rate in response to input perturbations very quickly, within 1 to 3 ms, and encode high-frequency components of the input by phase-locking their spiking to frequencies up to 300 to 1000 Hz. This implies that time unit of computations by cortical ensembles is only few, 1 to 3 ms, which is considerably faster than the membrane time constant of individual neurons. The ability of cortical neuronal ensembles to communicate on a millisecond time scale allows for complex, multiple-step processing and precise coordination of neuronal activity in parallel processing streams, while keeping the speed of behavioral reactions within environmentally set temporal constraints.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2010-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-11-24

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

  4. EPSPs Measured in Proximal Dendritic Spines of Cortical Pyramidal Neurons.

    PubMed

    Acker, Corey D; Hoyos, Erika; Loew, Leslie M

    2016-01-01

    EPSPs occur when the neurotransmitter glutamate binds to postsynaptic receptors located on small pleomorphic membrane protrusions called dendritic spines. To transmit the synaptic signal, these potentials must travel through the spine neck and the dendritic tree to reach the soma. Due to their small size, the electrical behavior of spines and their ability to compartmentalize electrical signals has been very difficult to assess experimentally. In this study, we developed a method to perform simultaneous two-photon voltage-sensitive dye recording with two-photon glutamate uncaging in order to measure the characteristics (amplitude and duration) of uncaging-evoked EPSPs in single spines on the basal dendrites of L5 pyramidal neurons in acute brain slices from CD1 control mice. We were able to record uncaging-evoked spine potentials that resembled miniature EPSPs at the soma from a wide range of spine morphologies. In proximal spines, these potentials averaged 13.0 mV (range, 6.5-30.8 mV; N = 20) for an average somatic EPSP of 0.59 mV, whereas the mean attenuation ratio (spine/soma) was found to be 25.3. Durations of spine EPSP waveforms were found to be 11.7 ms on average. Modeling studies demonstrate the important role that spine neck resistance (Rneck) plays in spine EPSP amplitudes. Simulations used to estimate Rneck by fits to voltage-sensitive dye measurements produced a mean of 179 MΩ (range, 23-420 MΩ; N = 19). Independent measurements based on fluorescence recovery after photobleaching of a cytosolic dye from spines of the same population of neurons produced a mean R eck estimate of 204 MΩ (range, 52-521 MΩ; N = 34).

  5. Differential distribution of voltage-gated ion channels in cortical neurons: implications for epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Child, Nicholas D; Benarroch, Eduardo E

    2014-03-18

    Neurons contain different functional somatodendritic and axonal domains, each with a characteristic distribution of voltage-gated ion channels, synaptic inputs, and function. The dendritic tree of a cortical pyramidal neuron has 2 distinct domains, the basal and the apical dendrites, both containing dendritic spines; the different domains of the axon are the axonal initial segment (AIS), axon proper (which in myelinated axons includes the node of Ranvier, paranodes, juxtaparanodes, and internodes), and the axon terminals. In the cerebral cortex, the dendritic spines of the pyramidal neurons receive most of the excitatory synapses; distinct populations of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic interneurons target specific cellular domains and thus exert different influences on pyramidal neurons. The multiple synaptic inputs reaching the somatodendritic region and generating excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) and inhibitory postsynaptic potentials (IPSPs) sum and elicit changes in membrane potential at the AIS, the site of initiation of the action potential.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-12-01

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

  7. Inhibition of microRNA 128 promotes excitability of cultured cortical neuronal networks

    PubMed Central

    McSweeney, K. Melodi; Gussow, Ayal B.; Bradrick, Shelton S.; Dugger, Sarah A.; Gelfman, Sahar; Wang, Quanli; Petrovski, Slavé; Frankel, Wayne N.; Boland, Michael J.; Goldstein, David B.

    2016-01-01

    Cultured neuronal networks monitored with microelectrode arrays (MEAs) have been used widely to evaluate pharmaceutical compounds for potential neurotoxic effects. A newer application of MEAs has been in the development of in vitro models of neurological disease. Here, we directly evaluated the utility of MEAs to recapitulate in vivo phenotypes of mature microRNA-128 (miR-128) deficiency, which causes fatal seizures in mice. We show that inhibition of miR-128 results in significantly increased neuronal activity in cultured neuronal networks derived from primary mouse cortical neurons. These results support the utility of MEAs in developing in vitro models of neuroexcitability disorders, such as epilepsy, and further suggest that MEAs provide an effective tool for the rapid identification of microRNAs that promote seizures when dysregulated. PMID:27516621

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  9. Ultramicroscopy Reveals Axonal Transport Impairments in Cortical Motor Neurons at Prion Disease

    PubMed Central

    Ermolayev, Vladimir; Friedrich, Mike; Nozadze, Revaz; Cathomen, Toni; Klein, Michael A.; Harms, Gregory S.; Flechsig, Eckhard

    2009-01-01

    Abstract The functional imaging of neuronal circuits of the central nervous system is crucial for phenotype screenings or investigations of defects in neurodegenerative disorders. Current techniques yield either low penetration depth, yield poor resolution, or are restricted by the age of the animals. Here, we present a novel ultramicroscopy protocol for fluorescence imaging and three-dimensional reconstruction in the central nervous system of adult mice. In combination with tracing as a functional assay for axonal transport, retrogradely labeled descending motor neurons were visualized with >4 mm penetration depth. The analysis of the motor cortex shortly before the onset of clinical prion disease revealed that >80% neurons have functional impairments in axonal transport. Our study provides evidence that prion disease is associated with severe axonal transport defects in the cortical motor neurons and suggests a novel mechanism for prion-mediated neurodegeneration. PMID:19383482

  10. Inhibition of microRNA 128 promotes excitability of cultured cortical neuronal networks.

    PubMed

    McSweeney, K Melodi; Gussow, Ayal B; Bradrick, Shelton S; Dugger, Sarah A; Gelfman, Sahar; Wang, Quanli; Petrovski, Slavé; Frankel, Wayne N; Boland, Michael J; Goldstein, David B

    2016-10-01

    Cultured neuronal networks monitored with microelectrode arrays (MEAs) have been used widely to evaluate pharmaceutical compounds for potential neurotoxic effects. A newer application of MEAs has been in the development of in vitro models of neurological disease. Here, we directly evaluated the utility of MEAs to recapitulate in vivo phenotypes of mature microRNA-128 (miR-128) deficiency, which causes fatal seizures in mice. We show that inhibition of miR-128 results in significantly increased neuronal activity in cultured neuronal networks derived from primary mouse cortical neurons. These results support the utility of MEAs in developing in vitro models of neuroexcitability disorders, such as epilepsy, and further suggest that MEAs provide an effective tool for the rapid identification of microRNAs that promote seizures when dysregulated.

  11. The glutamate transporters EAAT2 and EAAT3 mediate cysteine uptake in cortical neuron cultures.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yongmei; Swanson, Raymond A

    2003-03-01

    Cysteine availability is normally the rate-limiting factor in glutathione synthesis. How neurons obtain cysteine from extracellular space is not well established. Here we used mouse cortical neuron cultures to examine the role of the excitatory amino acid transporters (EAATs) in neuronal cysteine uptake. The cultured neurons expressed both EAAT2 and EAAT3. Cysteine uptake was predominantly (> 85%) Na+-dependent, with an apparent Km of 37 microm. Cysteine uptake was reduced by the EAAT substrates l-glutamate and l-aspartate and by synthetic EAAT inhibitors. The non-selective EAAT inhibitor threo-beta-hydroxyaspartate had a significantly greater maximal inhibitory effect than did the EAAT2-selective inhibitor, dihydrokainate, indicating uptake by both EAAT2 and EAAT3. Serine, a substrate of ASC uptake system, had negligible effects on cysteine uptake at 10-fold excess concentrations. To assess the functional importance of EAAT-mediated cysteine uptake in neuronal glutathione synthesis, cultures were treated with diethylmaleate to deplete glutathione, then incubated with cysteine in the presence or absence of EAAT inhibitors. Threo-beta-benzyloxyaspartate and the non-transportable inhibitor threo-beta-hydroxyaspartate both inhibited the cysteine-dependent glutathione synthesis. The findings suggest that neuronal EAAT activity can be a rate-limiting step for neuronal glutathione synthesis and that the primary function of EAATs expressed by neurons in vivo may be to transport cysteine.

  12. Foxp1 Regulates Cortical Radial Migration and Neuronal Morphogenesis in Developing Cerebral Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xue; Xiao, Jian; Fröhlich, Henning; Tu, Xiaomeng; Li, Lianlian; Xu, Yue; Cao, Huateng; Qu, Jia; Rappold, Gudrun A.; Chen, Jie-Guang

    2015-01-01

    FOXP1 is a member of FOXP subfamily transcription factors. Mutations in FOXP1 gene have been found in various development-related cognitive disorders. However, little is known about the etiology of these symptoms, and specifically the function of FOXP1 in neuronal development. Here, we report that suppression of Foxp1 expression in mouse cerebral cortex led to a neuronal migration defect, which was rescued by overexpression of Foxp1. Mice with Foxp1 knockdown exhibited ectopic neurons in deep layers of the cortex postnatally. The neuronal differentiation of Foxp1-downregulated cells was normal. However, morphological analysis showed that the neurons with Foxp1 deficiency had an inhibited axonal growth in vitro and a weakened transition from multipolar to bipolar in vivo. Moreover, we found that the expression of Foxp1 modulated the dendritic maturation of neurons at a late postnatal date. Our results demonstrate critical roles of Foxp1 in the radial migration and morphogenesis of cortical neurons during development. This study may shed light on the complex relationship between neuronal development and the related cognitive disorders. PMID:26010426

  13. Differential organization of cortical inputs to striatal projection neurons of the matrix compartment in rats

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Yunping; Lanciego, Jose; Goff, Lydia Kerkerian-Le; Coulon, Patrice; Salin, Pascal; Kachidian, Philippe; Lei, Wanlong; Del Mar, Nobel; Reiner, Anton

    2015-01-01

    In prior studies, we described the differential organization of corticostriatal and thalamostriatal inputs to the spines of direct pathway (dSPNs) and indirect pathway striatal projection neurons (iSPNs) of the matrix compartment. In the present electron microscopic (EM) analysis, we have refined understanding of the relative amounts of cortical axospinous vs. axodendritic input to the two types of SPNs. Of note, we found that individual dSPNs receive about twice as many axospinous synaptic terminals from IT-type (intratelencephalically projecting) cortical neurons as they do from PT-type (pyramidal tract projecting) cortical neurons. We also found that PT-type axospinous synaptic terminals were about 1.5 times as common on individual iSPNs as IT-type axospinous synaptic terminals. Overall, a higher percentage of IT-type terminals contacted dSPN than iSPN spines, while a higher percentage of PT-type terminals contacted iSPN than dSPN spines. Notably, IT-type axospinous synaptic terminals were significantly larger on iSPN spines than on dSPN spines. By contrast to axospinous input, the axodendritic PT-type input to dSPNs was more substantial than that to iSPNs, and the axodendritic IT-type input appeared to be meager and comparable for both SPN types. The prominent axodendritic PT-type input to dSPNs may accentuate their PT-type responsiveness, and the large size of axospinous IT-type terminals on iSPNs may accentuate their IT-type responsiveness. Using transneuronal labeling with rabies virus to selectively label the cortical neurons with direct input to the dSPNs projecting to the substantia nigra pars reticulata, we found that the input predominantly arose from neurons in the upper layers of motor cortices, in which IT-type perikarya predominate. The differential cortical input to SPNs is likely to play key roles in motor control and motor learning. PMID:25926776

  14. Histamine release in the basal forebrain mediates cortical activation through cholinergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Zant, Janneke C; Rozov, Stanislav; Wigren, Henna-Kaisa; Panula, Pertti; Porkka-Heiskanen, Tarja

    2012-09-19

    The basal forebrain (BF) is a key structure in regulating both cortical activity and sleep homeostasis. It receives input from all ascending arousal systems and is particularly highly innervated by histaminergic neurons. Previous studies clearly point to a role for histamine as a wake-promoting substance in the BF. We used in vivo microdialysis and pharmacological treatments in rats to study which electroencephalogram (EEG) spectral properties are associated with histamine-induced wakefulness and whether this wakefulness is followed by increased sleep and increased EEG delta power during sleep. We also investigated which BF neurons mediate histamine-induced cortical activation. Extracellular BF histamine levels rose immediately and remained constant throughout a 6 h period of sleep deprivation, returning to baseline levels immediately afterward. During the spontaneous sleep-wake cycle, we observed a strong correlation between wakefulness and extracellular histamine concentrations in the BF, which was unaffected by the time of day. The perfusion of histamine into the BF increased wakefulness and cortical activity without inducing recovery sleep. The perfusion of a histamine receptor 1 antagonist into the BF decreased both wakefulness and cortical activity. Lesioning the BF cholinergic neurons abolished these effects. Together, these results show that activation of the cholinergic BF by histamine is important in sustaining a high level of cortical activation, and that a lack of activation of the cholinergic BF by histamine may be important in initiating and maintaining nonrapid eye movement sleep. The level of histamine release is tightly connected to behavioral state, but conveys no information about sleep pressure.

  15. [Electrical excitability of the apical dendrites of mammalian cortical pyramidal neurons].

    PubMed

    Fan, Shih-Fang

    2012-12-25

    The electrical excitability of the dendrites of the cortical neurons was first studied on the apical dendrites of the pyramidal neurons. Professor ZHANG Xiang-Tong (H-T Chang) made important contributions in the fifties of last century on this topic. Through numerous studies later on, it has been established that the electrical excitability of dendrites of different types of neurons, even different dendrites in the same neuron is different. For the apical dendrites of the cortical pyramidal neurons, neither a single nor a train of repetitive action potentials with constant frequency can reach its terminal portion. However, some of the burst repetitive responses with non-constant frequency of the apical dendrite elicited by direct current injected into the soma may reach the terminal portion. This may be due to: (1) the calcium ion concentration in the apical dendrite is increased by the burst activities, which, in turn, increases the electrical excitability of the apical dendrite and /or (2) some retrograde collaterals of axon of the activated soma reach the apical dendrite and release neurotransmitter glutamate, which changes the properties of the voltage-gated ion channels in the apical dendrite. Low electrical excitability of the apical dendrites seems to be essential for the processing of numerous income signals to the terminal portion of the apical dendrites.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-10

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

  17. Spectrotemporal processing differences between auditory cortical fast-spiking and regular-spiking neurons

    PubMed Central

    Atencio, Craig A.; Schreiner, Christoph E.

    2008-01-01

    Excitatory pyramidal neurons and inhibitory interneurons constitute the main elements of cortical circuitry and have distinctive morphologic and electrophysiological properties. Here, we differentiate them by analyzing the time course of their action potentials (APs) and characterizing their receptive field properties in auditory cortex. Pyramidal neurons have longer APs and discharge as Regular-Spiking Units (RSUs), while basket and chandelier cells, which are inhibitory interneurons, have shorter APs and are Fast-Spiking Units (FSUs). To compare these neuronal classes we stimulated cat primary auditory cortex neurons with a dynamic moving ripple stimulus and constructed single-unit spectrotemporal receptive fields (STRFs) and their associated nonlinearities. FSUs had shorter latencies, broader spectral tuning, greater stimulus specificity, and higher temporal precision than RSUs. The STRF structure of FSUs was more separable, suggesting more independence between spectral and temporal processing regimes. The nonlinearities associated with the two cell classes was indicative of higher feature selectivity for FSUs. These global functional differences between RSUs and FSUs suggest fundamental distinctions between putative excitatory and inhibitory neurons that shape auditory cortical processing. PMID:18400888

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

    PubMed Central

    Bertrand, Sarah J.; Mactutus, Charles F.; Booze, Rosemarie

    2016-01-01

    Filamentous actin protein (F-actin) plays a major role in spinogenesis, synaptic plasticity, and synaptic stability. Changes in dendritic F-actin rich structures suggest alterations in synaptic integrity and connectivity. Here we provide a detailed protocol for culturing primary rat cortical neurons, Phalloidin staining for F-actin puncta, and subsequent quantification techniques. First, the frontal cortex of E18 rat embryos are dissociated into low-density cell culture, then the neurons grown in vitro for at least 12-14 days. Following experimental treatment, the cortical neurons are stained with AlexaFluor 488 Phalloidin (to label the dendritic F-actin puncta) and microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2; to validate the neuronal cells and dendritic integrity). Finally, specialized software is used to analyze and quantify randomly selected neuronal dendrites. F-actin rich structures are identified on second order dendritic branches (length range 25-75 µm) with continuous MAP2 immunofluorescence. The protocol presented here will be a useful method for investigating changes in dendritic synapse structures subsequent to experimental treatments. PMID:26889716

  19. The presence of calbindin in rat cortical neurons protects in vitro from oxydative stress.

    PubMed

    Hugon, J; Hugon, F; Esclaire, F; Lesort, M; Diop, A G

    1996-01-29

    Free radicals are highly reactive chemicals containing an unpaired electron and are normally produced by the cellular metabolism. The oxydative stress is defined as a lack of balance between the production of free radicals and the activity of antioxydant metabolites. It induces cellular damages to lipids, proteins and membranes. Abnormal calcium metabolism can be a consequence of oxydative stress leading to increased intracellular concentrations. Calbindin D28K is a calcium binding protein which could have a neuroprotective action against various cellular insults. In this study rat cortical cell cultures were exposed during various times and at different concentrations to the couple Xanthine/Xanthine oxydase (XA/XO), which produces the superoxyde radical O2-.. Neuronal survival revealed that XA/XO is toxic for cortical cell cultures. The Calbindin D28K immunocytochemical study shows that the percentages of Calbindin positive cells are greater in surviving neurons following the XA/XO exposure compared to controls. There is a time-dependent and a dose-dependent relation between the number of surviving neurons and the percentage of Calbindin positive neurons. These results suggest that the presence of cytosolic neuronal Calbindin D28k is associated with a greater resistance to oxydative stress.

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

    PubMed Central

    Kuśmierczak, Magda; Lajeunesse, Francis; Grand, Laszlo; Timofeev, Igor

    2014-01-01

    Severe brain injuries can trigger epileptogenesis, a latent period that eventually leads to epilepsy. Previous studies have demonstrated that changes in local connectivity between cortical neurons are a part of the epileptogenic processes. In the present study we aimed to investigate whether changes in long-range connectivity are also involved in epileptogenesis. We performed a large unilateral transection (undercut) of the white matter below the suprasylvian gyrus in cats. After about 2 months, we either injected retrograde tracer (choleratoxin, sub-unit B, CTB) or performed Golgi staining. We analyzed distribution of retrogradely labeled neurons, counted dendritic spines in the neocortex (Golgi staining), and analyzed dendritic orientation in control conditions and after the injury. We found a significant increase in the number of detected cells at the frontal parts of the injured hemisphere, which suggests that the process of axonal sprouting occurs in the deafferented area. The increase in the number of retrogradely stained neurons was accompanied with a significant decrease in neocortical spine density in the undercut area, a reduction in vertical and an increase in horizontal orientation of neuronal processes. The present study shows global morphological changes underlying epileptogenesis. An increased connectivity in the injured cortical regions accompanied with a decrease in spine density suggests that excitatory synapses might be formed on dendritic shafts, which probably contributes to the altered neuronal excitability that was described in previous studies on epileptogenesis. PMID:25304932

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-22

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

  2. PERK regulates Gq protein-coupled intracellular Ca(2+) dynamics in primary cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Siying; McGrath, Barbara C; Bai, Yuting; Tang, Xin; Cavener, Douglas R

    2016-10-01

    PERK (EIF2AK3) is an ER-resident eIF2α kinase required for behavioral flexibility and metabotropic glutamate receptor-dependent long-term depression via its translational control. Motivated by the recent discoveries that PERK regulates Ca(2+) dynamics in insulin-secreting β-cells underlying glucose-stimulated insulin secretion, and modulates Ca(2+) signals-dependent working memory, we explored the role of PERK in regulating Gq protein-coupled Ca(2+) dynamics in pyramidal neurons. We found that acute PERK inhibition by the use of a highly specific PERK inhibitor reduced the intracellular Ca(2+) rise stimulated by the activation of acetylcholine, metabotropic glutamate and bradykinin-2 receptors in primary cortical neurons. More specifically, acute PERK inhibition increased IP3 receptor mediated ER Ca(2+) release, but decreased receptor-operated extracellular Ca(2+) influx. Impaired Gq protein-coupled intracellular Ca(2+) rise was also observed in genetic Perk knockout neurons. Taken together, our findings reveal a novel role of PERK in neurons, which is eIF2α-independent, and suggest that the impaired working memory in forebrain-specific Perk knockout mice may stem from altered Gq protein-coupled intracellular Ca(2+) dynamics in cortical pyramidal neurons.

  3. Ethanol-induced oxidative stress precedes mitochondrially mediated apoptotic death of cultured fetal cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Ramachandran, Vinitha; Watts, Lora Talley; Maffi, Shivani Kaushal; Chen, Juanjuan; Schenker, Steven; Henderson, George

    2003-11-15

    In utero ethanol exposure elicits apoptotic cell death in the fetal brain, and this may be mediated by oxidative stress. Our studies utilize cultured fetal rat cortical neurons and illustrate that ethanol elicits a rapid onset of oxidative stress, which culminates in mitochondrially mediated apoptotic cell death. Cells exposed to ethanol (2.5 mg/ml) remained attached to their polylysine matrix during a 24-hr exposure, but they exhibited distinct signs of oxidative stress, decreased viability, and apoptosis. Confocal microscopy of live cortical neurons pretreated with dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate demonstrated an increase in reactive oxygen species (ROS) within 5 min of ethanol exposure. The levels of ROS further increased by 58% within 1 hr (P <.05) and by 82% within 2 hr (P <.05), accompanied by increases of mitochondrial 4-hydroxynonenal (HNE). These early events were followed by decreased trypan blue exclusion of 10% to 32% (P <.05) at the 6- to 24-hr time points, respectively. This culminates in apoptotic death, with increases of Annexin V binding of 43%, 89%, 123%, and 238%, at 2, 6, 12, and 24 hr of ethanol treatment, respectively, as well as DNA fragmentation increases of 50% and 65% by 12 and 24 hr, respectively. Release of cytochrome c by mitochondria increased by 53% at 6 hr of exposure (P <.05), concomitant with activation of caspase 3 (52% at 12 hr, P <.05). Pretreatment with N-acetylcysteine increased cellular glutathione and prevented apoptosis. These studies provide a time line illustrating that oxidative stress and formation of a proapoptotic lipid peroxidation product, HNE, precede a cascade of mitochondrially mediated events in cultured fetal cortical neurons, culminating in apoptotic death. The prevention of apoptosis by augmentation of glutathione stores also strongly supports a role for oxidative stress in ethanol-mediated apoptotic death of fetal cortical neurons.

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

    PubMed

    Barreto-Chang, Odmara L; Dolmetsch, Ricardo E

    2009-01-19

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

  5. Abnormalities of cortical inhibitory neurons in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Enterzari-Taher, M; Eisen, A; Stewart, H; Nakajima, M

    1997-01-01

    We have used peristimulus time histograms to study how paired, transcranial magnetic stimulation alters the firing of single motor units and the magnitude of unitary excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) recorded from the extensor digitorum communis muscle. With stimulus intensity at threshold and an interstimulus interval of 30 ms, normal subjects (n = 20) demonstrated marked inhibition with a mean test/conditioning EPSP ratio of 13.8% (range 0-51%) and in 7 subjects the ratio was 0 (100% inhibition). In amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) the ratio was 133% (range 64-267%), P < 0.001. Fifty percent of patients had a test/conditioning EPSP ratio greater than 100% (0 inhibition). The abnormalities were independent of disease severity, bulbar versus spinal ALS, more prominent upper versus lower motor neuron findings, and disease duration. Normal inhibition occurred in 3 individuals, 1 each with multiple sclerosis, Kennedy's syndrome, and monomelic amyotrophy. We speculate that the marked loss of inhibition seen in all patients with ALS, which may be unique to this disorder, reflects loss of inhibitory modulation of the corticomotoneuron and could result in their chronic excitatory drive and eventual demise.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-04-05

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Merino, José Joaquín; Roncero, César; Oset-Gasque, María Jesús; Naddaf, Ahmad; González, María Pilar

    2014-01-01

    In the present work, we have studied whether cell death could be induced in cortical neurons from rats subjected to different period of O2 deprivation and low glucose (ODLG). This “in vitro” model is designed to emulate the penumbra area under ischemia. In these conditions, cortical neurons displayed loss of mitochondrial respiratory ability however, nor necrosis neither apoptosis occurred despite ROS production. The absence of cellular death could be a consequence of increased antioxidant responses such as superoxide dismutase-1 (SOD1) and GPX3. In addition, the levels of reduced glutathione were augmented and HIF-1/3α overexpressed. After long periods of ODLG (12–24 h) cortical neurons showed cellular and mitochondrial membrane alterations and did not recuperate cellular viability during reperfusion. This could mean that therapies directed toward prevention of cellular and mitochondrial membrane imbalance or cell death through mechanisms other than necrosis or apoptosis, like authophagy, may be a way to prevent ODLG damage. PMID:24526229

  8. The presence of cortical neurons in striatal-cortical co-cultures alters the effects of dopamine and BDNF on medium spiny neuron dendritic development

    PubMed Central

    Penrod, Rachel D.; Campagna, Justin; Panneck, Travis; Preese, Laura; Lanier, Lorene M.

    2015-01-01

    Medium spiny neurons (MSNs) are the major striatal neuron and receive synaptic input from both glutamatergic and dopaminergic afferents. These synapses are made on MSN dendritic spines, which undergo density and morphology changes in association with numerous disease and experience-dependent states. Despite wide interest in the structure and function of mature MSNs, relatively little is known about MSN development. Furthermore, most in vitro studies of MSN development have been done in simple striatal cultures that lack any type of non-autologous synaptic input, leaving open the question of how MSN development is affected by a complex environment that includes other types of neurons, glia, and accompanying secreted and cell-associated cues. Here we characterize the development of MSNs in striatal-cortical co-culture, including quantitative morphological analysis of dendritic arborization and spine development, describing progressive changes in density and morphology of developing spines. Overall, MSN growth is much more robust in the striatal-cortical co-culture compared to striatal mono-culture. Inclusion of dopamine (DA) in the co-culture further enhances MSN dendritic arborization and spine density, but the effects of DA on dendritic branching are only significant at later times in development. In contrast, exogenous Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) has only a minimal effect on MSN development in the co-culture, but significantly enhances MSN dendritic arborization in striatal mono-culture. Importantly, inhibition of NMDA receptors in the co-culture significantly enhances the effect of exogenous BDNF, suggesting that the efficacy of BDNF depends on the cellular environment. Combined, these studies identify specific periods of MSN development that may be particularly sensitive to perturbation by external factors and demonstrate the importance of studying MSN development in a complex signaling environment. PMID:26257605

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-06-15

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

  11. Homeostatic Changes in GABA and Glutamate Receptors on Excitatory Cortical Neurons during Sleep Deprivation and Recovery

    PubMed Central

    del Cid-Pellitero, Esther; Plavski, Anton; Mainville, Lynda; Jones, Barbara E.

    2017-01-01

    Neuronal activity is regulated in a homeostatic manner through changes in inhibitory GABA and excitatory glutamate (Glu) AMPA (A) receptors (GluARs). Using immunofluorescent staining, we examined whether calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase IIα (CaMKIIα)-labeled (+) excitatory neurons in the barrel cortex undergo such homeostatic regulation following enforced waking with associated cortical activation during the day when mice normally sleep the majority of the time. Sleep deprived mice were prevented from falling asleep by unilateral whisker stimulation and sleep recovery (SR) mice allowed to sleep freely following deprivation. In parallel with changes in c-Fos reflecting changes in activity, (β2-3 subunits of) GABAA Rs were increased on the membrane of CaMKIIα+ neurons with enforced waking and returned to baseline levels with SR in barrel cortex on sides both contra- and ipsilateral to the whisker stimulation. The GABAAR increase was correlated with increased gamma electroencephalographic (EEG) activity across conditions. On the other hand, (GluA1 subunits of) AMPA Rs were progressively removed from the membrane of CaMKIIα+ neurons by (Rab5+) early endosomes during enforced waking and returned to the membrane by (Rab11+) recycling endosomes during SR. The internalization of the GluA1Rs paralleled the expression of Arc, which mediates homeostatic regulation of AMPA receptors through an endocytic pathway. The reciprocal changes in GluA1Rs relative to GABAARs suggest homeostatic down-scaling during enforced waking and sensory stimulation and restorative up-scaling during recovery sleep. Such homeostatic changes with sleep-wake states and their associated cortical activities could stabilize excitability and activity in excitatory cortical neurons.

  12. Simple Cortical and Thalamic Neuron Models for Digital Arithmetic Circuit Implementation.

    PubMed

    Nanami, Takuya; Kohno, Takashi

    2016-01-01

    Trade-off between reproducibility of neuronal activities and computational efficiency is one of crucial subjects in computational neuroscience and neuromorphic engineering. A wide variety of neuronal models have been studied from different viewpoints. The digital spiking silicon neuron (DSSN) model is a qualitative model that focuses on efficient implementation by digital arithmetic circuits. We expanded the DSSN model and found appropriate parameter sets with which it reproduces the dynamical behaviors of the ionic-conductance models of four classes of cortical and thalamic neurons. We first developed a four-variable model by reducing the number of variables in the ionic-conductance models and elucidated its mathematical structures using bifurcation analysis. Then, expanded DSSN models were constructed that reproduce these mathematical structures and capture the characteristic behavior of each neuron class. We confirmed that statistics of the neuronal spike sequences are similar in the DSSN and the ionic-conductance models. Computational cost of the DSSN model is larger than that of the recent sophisticated Integrate-and-Fire-based models, but smaller than the ionic-conductance models. This model is intended to provide another meeting point for above trade-off that satisfies the demand for large-scale neuronal network simulation with closer-to-biology models.

  13. Simple Cortical and Thalamic Neuron Models for Digital Arithmetic Circuit Implementation

    PubMed Central

    Nanami, Takuya; Kohno, Takashi

    2016-01-01

    Trade-off between reproducibility of neuronal activities and computational efficiency is one of crucial subjects in computational neuroscience and neuromorphic engineering. A wide variety of neuronal models have been studied from different viewpoints. The digital spiking silicon neuron (DSSN) model is a qualitative model that focuses on efficient implementation by digital arithmetic circuits. We expanded the DSSN model and found appropriate parameter sets with which it reproduces the dynamical behaviors of the ionic-conductance models of four classes of cortical and thalamic neurons. We first developed a four-variable model by reducing the number of variables in the ionic-conductance models and elucidated its mathematical structures using bifurcation analysis. Then, expanded DSSN models were constructed that reproduce these mathematical structures and capture the characteristic behavior of each neuron class. We confirmed that statistics of the neuronal spike sequences are similar in the DSSN and the ionic-conductance models. Computational cost of the DSSN model is larger than that of the recent sophisticated Integrate-and-Fire-based models, but smaller than the ionic-conductance models. This model is intended to provide another meeting point for above trade-off that satisfies the demand for large-scale neuronal network simulation with closer-to-biology models. PMID:27242397

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2017-01-01

    Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS) has been successfully used as a non-invasive therapeutic intervention for several neurological disorders in the clinic as well as an investigative tool for basic neuroscience. rTMS has been shown to induce long-term changes in neuronal circuits in vivo. Such long-term effects of rTMS have been investigated using behavioral, imaging, electrophysiological, and molecular approaches, but there is limited understanding of the immediate effects of TMS on neurons. We investigated the immediate effects of high frequency (20 Hz) rTMS on the activity of cortical neurons in an effort to understand the underlying cellular mechanisms activated by rTMS. We used whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in acute rat brain slices and calcium imaging of cultured primary neurons to examine changes in neuronal activity and intracellular calcium respectively. Our results indicate that each TMS pulse caused an immediate and transient activation of voltage gated sodium channels (9.6 ± 1.8 nA at -45 mV, p value < 0.01) in neurons. Short 500 ms 20 Hz rTMS stimulation induced action potentials in a subpopulation of neurons, and significantly increased the steady state current of the neurons at near threshold voltages (at -45 mV: before TMS: I = 130 ± 17 pA, during TMS: I = 215 ± 23 pA, p value = 0.001). rTMS stimulation also led to a delayed increase in intracellular calcium (153.88 ± 61.94% increase from baseline). These results show that rTMS has an immediate and cumulative effect on neuronal activity and intracellular calcium levels, and suggest that rTMS may enhance neuronal responses when combined with an additional motor, sensory or cognitive stimulus. Thus, these results could be translated to optimize rTMS protocols for clinical as well as basic science applications. PMID:28114421

  15. Aberrant neuronal avalanches in cortical tissue removed from juvenile epilepsy patients.

    PubMed

    Hobbs, Jon P; Smith, Jodi L; Beggs, John M

    2010-12-01

    Some forms of epilepsy may arise as a result of pathologic interactions among neurons. Many forms of collective activity have been identified, including waves, spirals, oscillations, synchrony, and neuronal avalanches. All these emergent activity patterns have been hypothesized to show pathologic signatures associated with epilepsy. Here, the authors used 60-channel multielectrode arrays to record neuronal avalanches in cortical tissue removed from juvenile epilepsy patients. For comparison, they also recorded activity in rat cortical slices. The authors found that some human tissue removed from epilepsy patients exhibited prolonged periods of hyperactivity not seen in rat slices. In addition, they found a positive correlation between the branching parameter, a measure of network gain, and firing rate in human slices during periods of hyperactivity. This relationship was not present in rat slices. The authors suggest that this positive correlation between the branching parameter and the firing rate is part of a positive feedback loop and may contribute to some forms of epilepsy. These results also indicate that neuronal avalanches are abnormally regulated in slices removed from pediatric epilepsy patients.

  16. Neuronal avalanches imply maximum dynamic range in cortical networks at criticality.

    PubMed

    Shew, Woodrow L; Yang, Hongdian; Petermann, Thomas; Roy, Rajarshi; Plenz, Dietmar

    2009-12-09

    Spontaneous neuronal activity is a ubiquitous feature of cortex. Its spatiotemporal organization reflects past input and modulates future network output. Here we study whether a particular type of spontaneous activity is generated by a network that is optimized for input processing. Neuronal avalanches are a type of spontaneous activity observed in superficial cortical layers in vitro and in vivo with statistical properties expected from a network operating at "criticality." Theory predicts that criticality and, therefore, neuronal avalanches are optimal for input processing, but until now, this has not been tested in experiments. Here, we use cortex slice cultures grown on planar microelectrode arrays to demonstrate that cortical networks that generate neuronal avalanches benefit from a maximized dynamic range, i.e., the ability to respond to the greatest range of stimuli. By changing the ratio of excitation and inhibition in the cultures, we derive a network tuning curve for stimulus processing as a function of distance from criticality in agreement with predictions from our simulations. Our findings suggest that in the cortex, (1) balanced excitation and inhibition establishes criticality, which maximizes the range of inputs that can be processed, and (2) spontaneous activity and input processing are unified in the context of critical phenomena.

  17. In vivo multi-photon nanosurgery on cortical neurons: focusing on network organization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sacconi, L.; O'Connor, R. P.; Jasaitis, A.; Masi, A.; Buffelli, M.; Pavone, F. S.

    2008-02-01

    Two-photon microscopy has been used to perform high spatial resolution imaging of spine plasticity in the intact neocortex of living mice. Multi-photon absorption has also been used as a tool for the selective disruption of cellular structures in living cells and simple organisms. In this work we exploit the spatial localization of multi-photon excitation to perform selective lesions on the neuronal processes of cortical neurons in living mice expressing fluorescent proteins. This methodology was applied to dissect single dendrites with sub-micrometric precision without causing any visible collateral damage to the surrounding neuronal structures. The spatial precision of this method was demonstrated by ablating individual dendritic spines, while sparing the adjacent spines and the structural integrity of the dendrite. The morphological consequences were then characterized with time lapse 3D two-photon imaging over a period of minutes to days after the procedure. Here we present the results of our systematic study of the morphological response of cortical pyramidal neurons to nanosurgical perturbations. Dendritic branches were followed after transecting distal segments, whilst the plasticity and remodeling of individual dendritic spines on a given branch was also followed after removing of a subset of spines.

  18. Pink1 protects cortical neurons from thapsigargin-induced oxidative stress and neuronal apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Li, Lin; Hu, Guo-ku

    2015-01-01

    Apoptosis mediates the precise and programmed natural death of neurons and is a physiologically important process in neurogenesis during maturation of the central nervous system. However, premature apoptosis and/or an aberration in apoptosis regulation are implicated in the pathogenesis of neurodegeneration. Thus, it is important to identify neuronal pathways/factors controlling apoptosis. Pink1 [phosphatase and tensin homologue (PTEN)-induced kinase 1] is a ubiquitously expressed gene and has been reported to have a physiological role in mitochondrial maintenance, suppressing mitochondrial oxidative stress, fission and autophagy. However, how Pink1 is involved in neuronal survival against oxidative stress remains not well understood. In the present paper, we demonstrate that thapsigargin, a specific irreversible inhibitor of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) calcium-ATPase, could lead to dramatic oxidative stress and neuronal apoptosis by ectopic calcium entry. Importantly, the neuronal toxicity of thapsigargin inhibits antioxidant gene Pink1 expression. Although Pink1 knockdown enhances the neuronal apoptosis by thapsigargin, its overexpression restores it. Our findings have established the neuronal protective role of Pink1 against oxidative stress and afford rationale for developing new strategy to the therapy of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25608948

  19. Estimation of the orientation of short lines with a realistic population of cortical neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shokhirev, Kirill Nikolai

    The inhomogeneous distribution of the receptive fields of cortical neurons influences the cortical representation of the orientation of short lines seen in visual images. A model of the response of populations of neurons in the human primary visual cortex is constructed by combining realistic response properties of individual neurons and cortical maps of orientation and location preferences. The encoding error characterizes the difference between a visual stimulus and its cortical representation, and is calculated using Fisher information, as the square root of the variance of a statistically efficient estimator. The error of encoding orientation varies with the location and orientation of the short line stimulus as modulated by the underlying orientation preference map. The average encoding error depends weakly on the structure of the orientation preference map and is smaller than the human error of estimating orientation. From this comparison I conclude that the actual mechanism of orientation perception does not make efficient use of all the information available in the neuronal responses and that the decoding of visual information from neuronal responses limits psychophysical performance. Two forms of a population vector (PV) estimator were used to test if a simple estimation mechanism can account for the human accuracy of estimation of the orientation. The canonical PV estimator is similar to the models proposed previously for estimation of movement direction in the motor cortex. The "normalized" PV estimator has coefficients scaled by the local density of neurons in the space of preferred parameters. The average variance of either estimator does not increase appreciably when a realistic distribution is used instead of a random distribution of preferred orientations and remains significantly below the psychophysical threshold. However, the bias of the canonical PV estimator increases by approximately a factor of 15 compared with the random distribution. The

  20. Novel protein transfection of primary rat cortical neurons using an antibody that penetrates living cells.

    PubMed

    Weisbart, R H; Baldwin, R; Huh, B; Zack, D J; Nishimura, R

    2000-06-01

    An Ab-based system to deliver functional proteins into neurons was developed using the murine mAb, mAb 3E10. This was achieved by covalently conjugating catalase to the Ab so that the conjugate retained high activity for the degradation of hydrogen peroxide. Three-dimensional fluorescence microscopy was used to demonstrate penetration of the Ab into the nucleus of living primary cortical neurons. The Ab conjugate localized in both the cytoplasm and nucleus. Retention of catalase activity after penetration and distribution of conjugate was demonstrated by reduction in cell death following exposure of treated neurons to hydrogen peroxide. These studies illustrate the potential of this method for the intracellular delivery of therapeutic proteins.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tateno, Takashi; Kawana, Akio; Jimbo, Yasuhiko

    2002-05-01

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

  2. Protective effect of panaxydol and panaxynol on sodium nitroprusside-induced apoptosis in cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Nie, Bao-Ming; Yang, Li-Min; Fu, Sai-Li; Jiang, Xiao-Yan; Lu, Pei-Hua; Lu, Yang

    2006-04-15

    An excess of the free radical nitric oxide (NO) is viewed as a deleterious factor involved in various CNS disorders. The protective effect of panaxydol (PND) and panaxynol (PNN) on sodium nitroprusside (SNP)-induced neuronal apoptosis and potential mechanism were investigated in primary cultured rat cortical neurons. Pretreatment of the cells with PND or PNN for 24 h following 1mM SNP, an exogenous NO donor, exposure for 1h, resulted significantly in reduction of cell death induced by SNP determined by MTT assay, LDH release and Hoechst staining. 5 microM PND and PNN also reduced the up-regulation of the pro-apoptotic gene, Bax, down-regulation of the anti-apoptotic gene, Bcl-2. The observations demonstrated that PND and PNN protect neurons against SNP-induced apoptosis via regulating the apoptotic related genes. The results raise the possibility that PND and PNN reduce neurodegeneration in the Alzheimer's brain.

  3. Cortical Neural Computation by Discrete Results Hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Castejon, Carlos; Nuñez, Angel

    2016-01-01

    One of the most challenging problems we face in neuroscience is to understand how the cortex performs computations. There is increasing evidence that the power of the cortical processing is produced by populations of neurons forming dynamic neuronal ensembles. Theoretical proposals and multineuronal experimental studies have revealed that ensembles of neurons can form emergent functional units. However, how these ensembles are implicated in cortical computations is still a mystery. Although cell ensembles have been associated with brain rhythms, the functional interaction remains largely unclear. It is still unknown how spatially distributed neuronal activity can be temporally integrated to contribute to cortical computations. A theoretical explanation integrating spatial and temporal aspects of cortical processing is still lacking. In this Hypothesis and Theory article, we propose a new functional theoretical framework to explain the computational roles of these ensembles in cortical processing. We suggest that complex neural computations underlying cortical processing could be temporally discrete and that sensory information would need to be quantized to be computed by the cerebral cortex. Accordingly, we propose that cortical processing is produced by the computation of discrete spatio-temporal functional units that we have called "Discrete Results" (Discrete Results Hypothesis). This hypothesis represents a novel functional mechanism by which information processing is computed in the cortex. Furthermore, we propose that precise dynamic sequences of "Discrete Results" is the mechanism used by the cortex to extract, code, memorize and transmit neural information. The novel "Discrete Results" concept has the ability to match the spatial and temporal aspects of cortical processing. We discuss the possible neural underpinnings of these functional computational units and describe the empirical evidence supporting our hypothesis. We propose that fast-spiking (FS

  4. Cortical Neural Computation by Discrete Results Hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Castejon, Carlos; Nuñez, Angel

    2016-01-01

    One of the most challenging problems we face in neuroscience is to understand how the cortex performs computations. There is increasing evidence that the power of the cortical processing is produced by populations of neurons forming dynamic neuronal ensembles. Theoretical proposals and multineuronal experimental studies have revealed that ensembles of neurons can form emergent functional units. However, how these ensembles are implicated in cortical computations is still a mystery. Although cell ensembles have been associated with brain rhythms, the functional interaction remains largely unclear. It is still unknown how spatially distributed neuronal activity can be temporally integrated to contribute to cortical computations. A theoretical explanation integrating spatial and temporal aspects of cortical processing is still lacking. In this Hypothesis and Theory article, we propose a new functional theoretical framework to explain the computational roles of these ensembles in cortical processing. We suggest that complex neural computations underlying cortical processing could be temporally discrete and that sensory information would need to be quantized to be computed by the cerebral cortex. Accordingly, we propose that cortical processing is produced by the computation of discrete spatio-temporal functional units that we have called “Discrete Results” (Discrete Results Hypothesis). This hypothesis represents a novel functional mechanism by which information processing is computed in the cortex. Furthermore, we propose that precise dynamic sequences of “Discrete Results” is the mechanism used by the cortex to extract, code, memorize and transmit neural information. The novel “Discrete Results” concept has the ability to match the spatial and temporal aspects of cortical processing. We discuss the possible neural underpinnings of these functional computational units and describe the empirical evidence supporting our hypothesis. We propose that fast

  5. Rosuvastatin induces delayed preconditioning against oxygen-glucose deprivation in cultured cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Domoki, Ferenc; Kis, Béla; Gáspár, Tamás; Snipes, James A; Parks, John S; Bari, Ferenc; Busija, David W

    2009-01-01

    We tested whether rosuvastatin (RST) protected against oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD)-induced cell death in primary rat cortical neuronal cultures. OGD reduced neuronal viability (%naive controls, mean +/- SE, n = 24-96, P < 0.05) to 44 +/- 1%, but 3-day pretreatment with RST (5 microM) increased survival to 82 +/- 2% (P < 0.05). One-day RST treatment was not protective. RST-induced neuroprotection was abolished by mevalonate or geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate (GGPP), but not by cholesterol coapplication. Furthermore, RST-induced decreases in neuronal cholesterol levels were abolished by mevalonate but not by GGPP. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels were reduced in RST-preconditioned neurons after OGD, and this effect was also reversed by both mevalonate and GGPP. These data suggested that GGPP, but not cholesterol depletion, were responsible for the induction of neuroprotection. Therefore, we tested whether 3-day treatments with perillic acid, a nonspecific inhibitor of both geranylgeranyl transferase (GGT) GGT 1 and Rab GGT, and the GGT 1-specific inhibitor GGTI-286 would reproduce the effects of RST. Perillic acid, but not GGTI-286, elicited robust neuronal preconditioning against OGD. RST, GGTI-286, and perillic acid all decreased mitochondrial membrane potential and lactate dehydrogenase activity in the cultured neurons, but only RST and perillic acid reduced neuronal ATP and membrane Rab3a protein levels. In conclusion, RST preconditions cultured neurons against OGD via depletion of GGPP, leading to decreased geranylgeranylation of proteins that are probably not isoprenylated by GGT 1. Reduced neuronal ATP levels and ROS production after OGD may be directly involved in the mechanism of neuroprotection.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  7. Additivity of Pyrethroid Actions on Sodium Influx in Cortical Neurons in Cerebrocortical Neurons in Primary Culture

    EPA Science Inventory

    BACKGROUND: Pyrethroid insecticides bind to voltage-gated sodium channels and modify their gating kinetics, thereby disrupting neuronal function. Although previous work has tested the additivity of pyrethroids in vivo, this has not been assessed directly at the primary molecular ...

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

  10. Lactate Modulates the Activity of Primary Cortical Neurons through a Receptor-Mediated Pathway

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

    Lactate is increasingly described as an energy substrate of the brain. Beside this still debated metabolic role, lactate may have other effects on brain cells. Here, we describe lactate as a neuromodulator, able to influence the activity of cortical neurons. Neuronal excitability of mouse primary neurons was monitored by calcium imaging. When applied in conjunction with glucose, lactate induced a decrease in the spontaneous calcium spiking frequency of neurons. The effect was reversible and concentration dependent (IC50 ∼4.2 mM). To test whether lactate effects are dependent on energy metabolism, we applied the closely related substrate pyruvate (5 mM) or switched to different glucose concentrations (0.5 or 10 mM). None of these conditions reproduced the effect of lactate. Recently, a Gi protein-coupled receptor for lactate called HCA1 has been introduced. To test if this receptor is implicated in the observed lactate sensitivity, we incubated cells with pertussis toxin (PTX) an inhibitor of Gi-protein. PTX prevented the decrease of neuronal activity by L-lactate. Moreover 3,5-dyhydroxybenzoic acid, a specific agonist of the HCA1 receptor, mimicked the action of lactate. This study indicates that lactate operates a negative feedback on neuronal activity by a receptor-mediated mechanism, independent from its intracellular metabolism. PMID:23951229

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  12. Online stimulus optimization rapidly reveals multidimensional selectivity in auditory cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Chambers, Anna R; Hancock, Kenneth E; Sen, Kamal; Polley, Daniel B

    2014-07-02

    Neurons in sensory brain regions shape our perception of the surrounding environment through two parallel operations: decomposition and integration. For example, auditory neurons decompose sounds by separately encoding their frequency, temporal modulation, intensity, and spatial location. Neurons also integrate across these various features to support a unified perceptual gestalt of an auditory object. At higher levels of a sensory pathway, neurons may select for a restricted region of feature space defined by the intersection of multiple, independent stimulus dimensions. To further characterize how auditory cortical neurons decompose and integrate multiple facets of an isolated sound, we developed an automated procedure that manipulated five fundamental acoustic properties in real time based on single-unit feedback in awake mice. Within several minutes, the online approach converged on regions of the multidimensional stimulus manifold that reliably drove neurons at significantly higher rates than predefined stimuli. Optimized stimuli were cross-validated against pure tone receptive fields and spectrotemporal receptive field estimates in the inferior colliculus and primary auditory cortex. We observed, from midbrain to cortex, increases in both level invariance and frequency selectivity, which may underlie equivalent sparseness of responses in the two areas. We found that onset and steady-state spike rates increased proportionately as the stimulus was tailored to the multidimensional receptive field. By separately evaluating the amount of leverage each sound feature exerted on the overall firing rate, these findings reveal interdependencies between stimulus features as well as hierarchical shifts in selectivity and invariance that may go unnoticed with traditional approaches.

  13. Dendritic vulnerability in neurodegenerative disease: insights from analyses of cortical pyramidal neurons in transgenic mouse models

    PubMed Central

    Weaver, Christina M.; Rocher, Anne B.; Rodriguez, Alfredo; Crimins, Johanna L.; Dickstein, Dara L.; Wearne, Susan L.; Hof, Patrick R.

    2011-01-01

    In neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease, neuronal dendrites and dendritic spines undergo significant pathological changes. Because of the determinant role of these highly dynamic structures in signaling by individual neurons and ultimately in the functionality of neuronal networks that mediate cognitive functions, a detailed understanding of these changes is of paramount importance. Mutant murine models, such as the Tg2576 APP mutant mouse and the rTg4510 tau mutant mouse have been developed to provide insight into pathogenesis involving the abnormal production and aggregation of amyloid and tau proteins, because of the key role that these proteins play in neurodegenerative disease. This review showcases the multidimensional approach taken by our collaborative group to increase understanding of pathological mechanisms in neurodegenerative disease using these mouse models. This approach includes analyses of empirical 3D morphological and electrophysiological data acquired from frontal cortical pyramidal neurons using confocal laser scanning microscopy and whole-cell patch-clamp recording techniques, combined with computational modeling methodologies. These collaborative studies are designed to shed insight on the repercussions of dystrophic changes in neocortical neurons, define the cellular phenotype of differential neuronal vulnerability in relevant models of neurodegenerative disease, and provide a basis upon which to develop meaningful therapeutic strategies aimed at preventing, reversing, or compensating for neurodegenerative changes in dementia. PMID:20177698

  14. Online Stimulus Optimization Rapidly Reveals Multidimensional Selectivity in Auditory Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hancock, Kenneth E.; Sen, Kamal

    2014-01-01

    Neurons in sensory brain regions shape our perception of the surrounding environment through two parallel operations: decomposition and integration. For example, auditory neurons decompose sounds by separately encoding their frequency, temporal modulation, intensity, and spatial location. Neurons also integrate across these various features to support a unified perceptual gestalt of an auditory object. At higher levels of a sensory pathway, neurons may select for a restricted region of feature space defined by the intersection of multiple, independent stimulus dimensions. To further characterize how auditory cortical neurons decompose and integrate multiple facets of an isolated sound, we developed an automated procedure that manipulated five fundamental acoustic properties in real time based on single-unit feedback in awake mice. Within several minutes, the online approach converged on regions of the multidimensional stimulus manifold that reliably drove neurons at significantly higher rates than predefined stimuli. Optimized stimuli were cross-validated against pure tone receptive fields and spectrotemporal receptive field estimates in the inferior colliculus and primary auditory cortex. We observed, from midbrain to cortex, increases in both level invariance and frequency selectivity, which may underlie equivalent sparseness of responses in the two areas. We found that onset and steady-state spike rates increased proportionately as the stimulus was tailored to the multidimensional receptive field. By separately evaluating the amount of leverage each sound feature exerted on the overall firing rate, these findings reveal interdependencies between stimulus features as well as hierarchical shifts in selectivity and invariance that may go unnoticed with traditional approaches. PMID:24990917

  15. Potassium channels control the interaction between active dendritic integration compartments in layer 5 cortical pyramidal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Harnett, Mark T.; Xu, Ning-Long; Magee, Jeffrey C.; Williams, Stephen R.

    2013-01-01

    Active dendritic synaptic integration enhances the computational power of neurons. Such nonlinear processing generates an object-localization signal in the apical dendritic tuft of layer 5B cortical pyramidal neurons during sensory-motor behaviour. Here we employ electrophysiological and optical approaches in brain-slices and behaving animals to investigate how excitatory synaptic input to this distal dendritic compartment influences neuronal output. We find that active dendritic integration throughout the apical dendritic tuft is highly compartmentalized by voltage-gated potassium (KV) channels. A high-density of both transient and sustained KV channels was observed in all apical dendritic compartments. These channels potently regulated the interaction between apical dendritic tuft, trunk, and axo-somatic integration zones to control neuronal output in vitro as well as the engagement of dendritic nonlinear processing in vivo during sensory-motor behaviour. Thus, KV channels dynamically tune the interaction between active dendritic integration compartments in layer 5B pyramidal neurons to shape behaviourally relevant neuronal computations. PMID:23931999

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Kern, M; Audesirk, T; Audesirk, G

    1993-01-01

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

  18. Dynamics and effective topology underlying synchronization in networks of cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Eytan, Danny; Marom, Shimon

    2006-08-16

    Cognitive processes depend on synchronization and propagation of electrical activity within and between neuronal assemblies. In vivo measurements show that the size of individual assemblies depends on their function and varies considerably, but the timescale of assembly activation is in the range of 0.1-0.2 s and is primarily independent of assembly size. Here we use an in vitro experimental model of cortical assemblies to characterize the process underlying the timescale of synchronization, its relationship to the effective topology of connectivity within an assembly, and its impact on propagation of activity within and between assemblies. We show that the basic mode of assembly activation, "network spike," is a threshold-governed, synchronized population event of 0.1-0.2 s duration and follows the logistics of neuronal recruitment in an effectively scale-free connected network. Accordingly, the sequence of neuronal activation within a network spike is nonrandom and hierarchical; a small subset of neurons is consistently recruited tens of milliseconds before others. Theory predicts that scale-free topology allows for synchronization time that does not increase markedly with network size; our experiments with networks of different densities support this prediction. The activity of early-to-fire neurons reliably forecasts an upcoming network spike and provides means for expedited propagation between assemblies. We demonstrate this capacity by observing the dynamics of two artificially coupled assemblies in vitro, using neuronal activity of one as a trigger for electrical stimulation of the other.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-11-01

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

  20. A New Role for TIMP-1 in Modulating Neurite Outgrowth and Morphology of Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ould-yahoui, Adlane; Tremblay, Evelyne; Sbai, Oualid; Ferhat, Lotfi; Bernard, Anne; Charrat, Eliane; Gueye, Yatma; Lim, Ngee Han; Brew, Keith; Risso, Jean-Jacques; Dive, Vincent; Khrestchatisky, Michel; Rivera, Santiago

    2009-01-01

    Background Tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-1 (TIMP-1) displays pleiotropic activities, both dependent and independent of its inhibitory activity on matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). In the central nervous system (CNS), TIMP-1 is strongly upregulated in reactive astrocytes and cortical neurons following excitotoxic/inflammatory stimuli, but no information exists on its effects on growth and morphology of cortical neurons. Principal Findings We found that 24 h incubation with recombinant TIMP-1 induced a 35% reduction in neurite length and significantly increased growth cones size and the number of F-actin rich microprocesses. TIMP-1 mediated reduction in neurite length affected both dendrites and axons after 48 h treatment. The effects on neurite length and morphology were not elicited by a mutated form of TIMP-1 inactive against MMP-1, -2 and -3, and still inhibitory for MMP-9, but were mimicked by a broad spectrum MMP inhibitor. MMP-9 was poorly expressed in developing cortical neurons, unlike MMP-2 which was present in growth cones and whose selective inhibition caused neurite length reductions similar to those induced by TIMP-1. Moreover, TIMP-1 mediated changes in cytoskeleton reorganisation were not accompanied by modifications in the expression levels of actin, βIII-tubulin, or microtubule assembly regulatory protein MAP2c. Transfection-mediated overexpression of TIMP-1 dramatically reduced neuritic arbour extension in the absence of detectable levels of released extracellular TIMP-1. Conclusions Altogether, TIMP-1 emerges as a modulator of neuronal outgrowth and morphology in a paracrine and autrocrine manner through the inhibition, at least in part, of MMP-2 and not MMP-9. These findings may help us understand the role of the MMP/TIMP system in post-lesion pre-scarring conditions. PMID:20011518

  1. TFP5 prevents 1-methyl-4-phenyl pyridine ion-induced neurotoxicity in mouse cortical neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Qi-Shan; Liao, Yuan-Gao; Ji, Zhong; Gu, Yong; Jiang, Hai-Shan; Xie, Zuo-Shan; Pan, Su-Yue; Hu, Ya-Fang

    2016-01-01

    The present study aimed to investigate the protective effect of a modified p5 peptide, TFP5, on 1-methyl-4-phenyl pyridine ion (MPP+)-induced neurotoxicity in cortical neurons and explore the therapeutic effect of TFP5 on Parkinson's disease (PD). MPP+ was applied to a primary culture of mouse cortical neurons to establish the cell model of PD. Neurons were divided into four groups: Control, model (MPP+), scrambled peptide (Scb) (Scb + MPP+) and TFP5 (TFP5 + MPP+) groups. Pretreatment with Scb or TFP5 was applied to the latter two groups, respectively, for 3 h, while phosphate-buffered saline was applied to the control and model groups. MPP+ was then applied to all groups, with the exception of the control group, and neurons were cultured for an additional 24 h. Neuron viability was evaluated using a Cell Counting kit-8 (CCK8) assay. To explore the mechanism underlying the protective effects of TFP5, the expression levels of p35, p25 and phosphorylated myocyte enhancer factor 2 (p-MEF2D) were determined by western blotting. Fluorescence microscopy showed that TFP5 was able to pass through cell membranes and distribute around the nucleus. CCK8 assay showed that neuronal apoptosis was dependent on MPP+ concentration and exposure time. Cell viability decreased significantly in the model group compared with the control group (55±7 vs. 100±0%; P<0.01), and increased significantly in the TFP5 group compared with the model group (98±2 vs. 55±5%; P<0.01) and Scb group (98±2 vs. 54±4%; P<0.01). Scb exhibited no protective effect. Western blotting results showed that MPP+ induced p25 and p-MEF2D expression, TFP5 and Scb did not affect MPP+-induced p25 expression, but TFP5 reduced MPP+-induced p-MEF2D expression. In summary, TFP5 protects against MPP+-induced neurotoxicity in mouse cortical neurons, possibly through inhibiting the MPP+-induced formation and elevated kinase activity of a cyclin-dependent kinase 5/p25 complex. PMID:27698762

  2. TC10β/CDC42 GTPase activating protein is required for the growth of cortical neuron dendrites.

    PubMed

    Shen, P-C; Xu, D-F; Liu, J-W; Li, K; Lin, M; Wang, H-T; Wang, R; Zheng, J

    2011-12-29

    Neuronal morphogenesis plays an important role in neuronal development. TC10β/CDC42 GTPase-activating protein (TCGAP) is known to be a brain-enriched multiple domain protein, but its role in neuronal development process remains poorly understood. In the present study, we showed that TCGAP positively regulated dendritic outgrowth and spine formation in developing cortical neurons. Knocking down TCGAP by RNA interference led to a decrease in the overall length of dendrite arbors and the number of dendrite branches both in vitro and in vivo. Overexpressing TCGAP in cultured cortical neurons increased dendritic outgrowth and branching. Moreover, overexpressing TCGAP lead to an increase of spine density while knocking-down TCGAP decreased spine density in vivo. The defect by downregulating TCGAP could be rescued by expressing a knock-down resistant form of TCGAP both in vivo and in vitro. In contrast, neither downregulating nor overexpressing TCGAP had any effect on axonal morphogenesis in primary cortical neuron cultures. Together, our findings suggest that TCGAP regulates neuronal morphogenesis in developing cortical neurons at both early and late stage.

  3. Passive Synaptic Normalization and Input Synchrony-Dependent Amplification of Cortical Feedback in Thalamocortical Neuron Dendrites

    PubMed Central

    Connelly, William M.; Crunelli, Vincenzo

    2016-01-01

    significantly increase the influence of corticothalamic feedback on sensory information transfer. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Neurons in first-order thalamic nuclei transmit sensory information from the periphery to the cortex. However, the numerically dominant synaptic input to thalamocortical neurons comes from the cortex, which provides a strong, activity-dependent modulatory feedback influence on information flow through the thalamus. Here, we reveal how individual quantal-sized corticothalamic EPSPs propagate within thalamocortical neuron dendrites and how different spatial and temporal input patterns are integrated by these cells. We find that thalamocortical neurons have voltage- and synchrony-dependent postsynaptic mechanisms, involving NMDA receptors and T-type Ca2+ channels that allow nonlinear amplification of integrated corticothalamic EPSPs. These mechanisms significantly increase the responsiveness of thalamocortical neurons to cortical excitatory input and broaden the “modulatory” influence exerted by corticothalamic synapses. PMID:27030759

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-06-01

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

  5. Genetic enhancement of visual learning by activation of protein kinase C pathways in small groups of rat cortical neurons.

    PubMed

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

    2005-09-14

    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.

  6. Sonic hedgehog promotes neurite outgrowth of cortical neurons under oxidative stress: Involving of mitochondria and energy metabolism.

    PubMed

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

    2017-01-01

    Oxidative stress has been demonstrated to be involved in the etiology of several neurobiological disorders. Sonic hedgehog (Shh), a secreted glycoprotein factor, has been implicated in promoting several aspects of brain remodeling process. Mitochondria may play an important role in controlling fundamental processes in neuroplasticity. However, little evidence is available about the effect and the potential mechanism of Shh on neurite outgrowth in primary cortical neurons under oxidative stress. Here, we revealed that Shh treatment significantly increased the viability of cortical neurons in a dose-dependent manner, which was damaged by hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). Shh alleviated the apoptosis rate of H2O2-induced neurons. Shh also increased neuritogenesis injuried by H2O2 in primary cortical neurons. Moreover, Shh reduced the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), increased the activities of SOD and and decreased the productions of MDA. In addition, Shh protected mitochondrial functions, elevated the cellular ATP levels and amelioratesd the impairment of mitochondrial complex II activities of cortical neurons induced by H2O2. In conclusion, all these results suggest that Shh acts as a prosurvival factor playing an essential role to neurite outgrowth of cortical neuron under H2O2 -induced oxidative stress, possibly through counteracting ROS release and preventing mitochondrial dysfunction and ATP as well as mitochondrial complex II activities against oxidative stress.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-04-01

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

  8. Increased Sparsity of Hippocampal CA1 Neuronal Ensembles in a Mouse Model of Down Syndrome Assayed by Arc Expression.

    PubMed

    Smith-Hicks, Constance L; Cai, Peiling; Savonenko, Alena V; Reeves, Roger H; Worley, Paul F

    2017-01-01

    Down syndrome (DS) is the leading chromosomal cause of intellectual disability, yet the neural substrates of learning and memory deficits remain poorly understood. Here, we interrogate neural networks linked to learning and memory in a well-characterized model of DS, the Ts65Dn mouse. We report that Ts65Dn mice exhibit exploratory behavior that is not different from littermate wild-type (WT) controls yet behavioral activation of Arc mRNA transcription in pyramidal neurons of the CA1 region of the hippocampus is altered in Ts65Dn mice. In WT mice, a 5 min period of exploration of a novel environment resulted in Arc mRNA transcription in 39% of CA1 neurons. By contrast, the same period of exploration resulted in only ~20% of CA1 neurons transcribing Arc mRNA in Ts65Dn mice indicating increased sparsity of the behaviorally induced ensemble. Like WT mice the CA1 pyramidal neurons of Ts65Dn mice reactivated Arc transcription during a second exposure to the same environment 20 min after the first experience, but the size of the reactivated ensemble was only ~60% of that in WT mice. After repeated daily exposures there was a further decline in the size of the reactivated ensemble in Ts65Dn and a disruption of reactivation. Together these data demonstrate reduction in the size of the behaviorally induced network that expresses Arc in Ts65Dn mice and disruption of the long-term stability of the ensemble. We propose that these deficits in network formation and stability contribute to cognitive symptoms in DS.

  9. Increased Sparsity of Hippocampal CA1 Neuronal Ensembles in a Mouse Model of Down Syndrome Assayed by Arc Expression

    PubMed Central

    Smith-Hicks, Constance L.; Cai, Peiling; Savonenko, Alena V.; Reeves, Roger H.; Worley, Paul F.

    2017-01-01

    Down syndrome (DS) is the leading chromosomal cause of intellectual disability, yet the neural substrates of learning and memory deficits remain poorly understood. Here, we interrogate neural networks linked to learning and memory in a well-characterized model of DS, the Ts65Dn mouse. We report that Ts65Dn mice exhibit exploratory behavior that is not different from littermate wild-type (WT) controls yet behavioral activation of Arc mRNA transcription in pyramidal neurons of the CA1 region of the hippocampus is altered in Ts65Dn mice. In WT mice, a 5 min period of exploration of a novel environment resulted in Arc mRNA transcription in 39% of CA1 neurons. By contrast, the same period of exploration resulted in only ~20% of CA1 neurons transcribing Arc mRNA in Ts65Dn mice indicating increased sparsity of the behaviorally induced ensemble. Like WT mice the CA1 pyramidal neurons of Ts65Dn mice reactivated Arc transcription during a second exposure to the same environment 20 min after the first experience, but the size of the reactivated ensemble was only ~60% of that in WT mice. After repeated daily exposures there was a further decline in the size of the reactivated ensemble in Ts65Dn and a disruption of reactivation. Together these data demonstrate reduction in the size of the behaviorally induced network that expresses Arc in Ts65Dn mice and disruption of the long-term stability of the ensemble. We propose that these deficits in network formation and stability contribute to cognitive symptoms in DS. PMID:28217086

  10. Enriched Endogenous Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids Protect Cortical Neurons from Experimental Ischemic Injury.

    PubMed

    Shi, Zhe; Ren, Huixia; Luo, Chuanming; Yao, Xiaoli; Li, Peng; He, Chengwei; Kang, Jing-X; Wan, Jian-Bo; Yuan, Ti-Fei; Su, Huanxing

    2016-11-01

    Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) exert therapeutic potential in a variety of neurological disorders, including ischemic stroke. However, the underlying mechanisms still lack investigation. Here, we report that cultured cortical neurons isolated from fat-1 mice with high endogenous n-3 PUFAs were tolerant to oxygen-glucose deprivation/reperfusion (OGD/R) injury. Fat-1 neurons exhibited significantly attenuated reactive oxygen species (ROS) activation induced by OGD/R injury, upregulated antiapoptotic proteins Bcl-2 and Bcl-xL, and reduced cleaved caspase-3. Exogenous administration of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), a major component of the n-3 PUFA family, resulted in similar protective effects on cultured cortex neurons. We further verified the protective effects of n-3 PUFAs in vivo, using a mini ischemic model with a reproducible cortical infarct and manifest function deficits by occlusion of the distal branch of the middle cerebral artery with focused femtosecond laser pulses. The Fat-1 animals showed decreased ROS expression and higher level of glutathione in the injured brain, associated with improved functional recovery. We therefore provide evidence that n-3 PUFAs exert their protective effects against ischemic injury both in vitro and in vivo, partly through inhibiting ROS activation.

  11. Amyloid beta-peptide disrupts carbachol-induced muscarinic cholinergic signal transduction in cortical neurons.

    PubMed Central

    Kelly, J F; Furukawa, K; Barger, S W; Rengen, M R; Mark, R J; Blanc, E M; Roth, G S; Mattson, M P

    1996-01-01

    Cholinergic pathways serve important functions in learning and memory processes, and deficits in cholinergic transmission occur in Alzheimer disease (AD). A subset of muscarinic cholinergic receptors are linked to G-proteins that activate phospholipase C, resulting in the liberation of inositol trisphosphate and Ca2+ release from intracellular stores. We now report that amyloid beta-peptide (Abeta), which forms plaques in the brain in AD, impairs muscarinic receptor activation of G proteins in cultured rat cortical neurons. Exposure of rodent fetal cortical neurons to Abeta25-35 and Abeta1-40 resulted in a concentration and time-dependent attenuation of carbachol-induced GTPase activity without affecting muscarinic receptor ligand binding parameters. Downstream events in the signal transduction cascade were similarly attenuated by Abeta. Carbachol-induced accumulation of inositol phosphates (IP, IP2, IP3, and IP4) was decreased and calcium imaging studies revealed that carbachol-induced release of calcium was severely impaired in neurons pretreated with Abeta. Muscarinic cholinergic signal transduction was disrupted with subtoxic levels of exposure to AP. The effects of Abeta on carbachol-induced GTPase activity and calcium release were attenuated by antioxidants, implicating free radicals in the mechanism whereby Abeta induced uncoupling of muscarinic receptors. These data demonstrate that Abeta disrupts muscarinic receptor coupling to G proteins that mediate induction of phosphoinositide accumulation and calcium release, findings that implicate Abeta in the impairment of cholinergic transmission that occurs in AD. PMID:8692890

  12. Lamin B1 protein is required for dendrite development in primary mouse cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Giacomini, Caterina; Mahajani, Sameehan; Ruffilli, Roberta; Marotta, Roberto; Gasparini, Laura

    2016-01-01

    Lamin B1, a key component of the nuclear lamina, plays an important role in brain development and function. A duplication of the human lamin B1 (LMNB1) gene has been linked to adult-onset autosomal dominant leukodystrophy, and mouse and human loss-of-function mutations in lamin B1 are susceptibility factors for neural tube defects. In the mouse, experimental ablation of endogenous lamin B1 (Lmnb1) severely impairs embryonic corticogenesis. Here we report that in primary mouse cortical neurons, LMNB1 overexpression reduces axonal outgrowth, whereas deficiency of endogenous Lmnb1 results in aberrant dendritic development. In the absence of Lmnb1, both the length and complexity of dendrites are reduced, and their growth is unresponsive to KCl stimulation. This defective dendritic outgrowth stems from impaired ERK signaling. In Lmnb1-null neurons, ERK is correctly phosphorylated, but phospho-ERK fails to translocate to the nucleus, possibly due to delocalization of nuclear pore complexes (NPCs) at the nuclear envelope. Taken together, these data highlight a previously unrecognized role of lamin B1 in dendrite development of mouse cortical neurons through regulation of nuclear shuttling of specific signaling molecules and NPC distribution.

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-10-26

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

  14. Information capacity and transmission are maximized in balanced cortical networks with neuronal avalanches.

    PubMed

    Shew, Woodrow L; Yang, Hongdian; Yu, Shan; Roy, Rajarshi; Plenz, Dietmar

    2011-01-05

    The repertoire of neural activity patterns that a cortical network can produce constrains the ability of the network to transfer and process information. Here, we measured activity patterns obtained from multisite local field potential recordings in cortex cultures, urethane-anesthetized rats, and awake macaque monkeys. First, we quantified the information capacity of the pattern repertoire of ongoing and stimulus-evoked activity using Shannon entropy. Next, we quantified the efficacy of information transmission between stimulus and response using mutual information. By systematically changing the ratio of excitation/inhibition (E/I) in vitro and in a network model, we discovered that both information capacity and information transmission are maximized at a particular intermediate E/I, at which ongoing activity emerges as neuronal avalanches. Next, we used our in vitro and model results to correctly predict in vivo information capacity and interactions between neuronal groups during ongoing activity. Close agreement between our experiments and model suggest that neuronal avalanches and peak information capacity arise because of criticality and are general properties of cortical networks with balanced E/I.

  15. Impact of calcium-activated potassium channels on NMDA spikes in cortical layer 5 pyramidal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Bock, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    Active electrical events play an important role in shaping signal processing in dendrites. As these events are usually associated with an increase in intracellular calcium, they are likely to be under the control of calcium-activated potassium channels. Here, we investigate the impact of calcium-activated potassium channels on N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor-dependent spikes, or NMDA spikes, evoked by glutamate iontophoresis onto basal dendrites of cortical layer 5 pyramidal neurons. We found that small-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels (SK channels) act to reduce NMDA spike amplitude but at the same time, also decrease the iontophoretic current required for their generation. This SK-mediated decrease in NMDA spike threshold was dependent on R-type voltage-gated calcium channels and indicates a counterintuitive, excitatory effect of SK channels on NMDA spike generation, whereas the capacity of SK channels to suppress NMDA spike amplitude is in line with the expected inhibitory action of potassium channels on dendritic excitability. Large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels had no significant impact on NMDA spikes, indicating that these channels are either absent from basal dendrites or not activated by NMDA spikes. These experiments reveal complex and opposing interactions among NMDA receptors, SK channels, and voltage-gated calcium channels in basal dendrites of cortical layer 5 pyramidal neurons during NMDA spike generation, which are likely to play an important role in regulating the way these neurons integrate the thousands of synaptic inputs they receive. PMID:26936985

  16. Contrasting roles for parvalbumin-expressing inhibitory neurons in two forms of adult visual cortical plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Kaplan, Eitan S; Cooke, Sam F; Komorowski, Robert W; Chubykin, Alexander A; Thomazeau, Aurore; Khibnik, Lena A; Gavornik, Jeffrey P; Bear, Mark F

    2016-01-01

    The roles played by cortical inhibitory neurons in experience-dependent plasticity are not well understood. Here we evaluate the participation of parvalbumin-expressing (PV+) GABAergic neurons in two forms of experience-dependent modification of primary visual cortex (V1) in adult mice: ocular dominance (OD) plasticity resulting from monocular deprivation and stimulus-selective response potentiation (SRP) resulting from enriched visual experience. These two forms of plasticity are triggered by different events but lead to a similar increase in visual cortical response. Both also require the NMDA class of glutamate receptor (NMDAR). However, we find that PV+ inhibitory neurons in V1 play a critical role in the expression of SRP and its behavioral correlate of familiarity recognition, but not in the expression of OD plasticity. Furthermore, NMDARs expressed within PV+ cells, reversibly inhibited by the psychotomimetic drug ketamine, play a critical role in SRP, but not in the induction or expression of adult OD plasticity. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.11450.001 PMID:26943618

  17. Lamin B1 protein is required for dendrite development in primary mouse cortical neurons

    PubMed Central

    Giacomini, Caterina; Mahajani, Sameehan; Ruffilli, Roberta; Marotta, Roberto; Gasparini, Laura

    2016-01-01

    Lamin B1, a key component of the nuclear lamina, plays an important role in brain development and function. A duplication of the human lamin B1 (LMNB1) gene has been linked to adult-onset autosomal dominant leukodystrophy, and mouse and human loss-of-function mutations in lamin B1 are susceptibility factors for neural tube defects. In the mouse, experimental ablation of endogenous lamin B1 (Lmnb1) severely impairs embryonic corticogenesis. Here we report that in primary mouse cortical neurons, LMNB1 overexpression reduces axonal outgrowth, whereas deficiency of endogenous Lmnb1 results in aberrant dendritic development. In the absence of Lmnb1, both the length and complexity of dendrites are reduced, and their growth is unresponsive to KCl stimulation. This defective dendritic outgrowth stems from impaired ERK signaling. In Lmnb1-null neurons, ERK is correctly phosphorylated, but phospho-ERK fails to translocate to the nucleus, possibly due to delocalization of nuclear pore complexes (NPCs) at the nuclear envelope. Taken together, these data highlight a previously unrecognized role of lamin B1 in dendrite development of mouse cortical neurons through regulation of nuclear shuttling of specific signaling molecules and NPC distribution. PMID:26510501

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-04-01

    While protein-energy malnutrition in the adult has been reported to induce motor abnormalities and exaggerate motor deficits caused by stroke, it is not known if alterations in mature cortical neurons contribute to the functional deficits. Therefore, we explored if PEM in adult rats provoked changes in the biochemical profile of neurons in the forelimb and hindlimb regions of the motor cortex. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopic imaging using a synchrotron generated light source revealed for the first time altered lipid composition in neurons and subcellular domains (cytosol and nuclei) in a cortical layer and region-specific manner. This change measured by the area under the curve of the δ(CH2) band may indicate modifications in membrane fluidity. These PEM-induced biochemical changes were associated with the development of abnormalities in forelimb use and posture. The findings of this study provide a mechanism by which PEM, if not treated, could exacerbate the course of various neurological disorders and diminish treatment efficacy.

  19. Morphological and Functional Differences between Athletes and Novices in Cortical Neuronal Networks

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Xiao-Ying; Pi, Yan-Ling; Wang, Jue; Li, Xue-Pei; Zhang, Lan-Lan; Dai, Wen; Zhu, Hua; Ni, Zhen; Zhang, Jian; Wu, Yin

    2017-01-01

    The cortical structural and functional differences in athletes and novices were investigated with a cross-sectional paradigm. We measured the gray matter volumes and resting-state functional connectivity in 21 basketball players and 21 novices with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques. It was found that gray matter volume in the left anterior insula (AI), inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), inferior parietal lobule (IPL) and right anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), precuneus is greater in basketball players than that in novices. These five brain regions were selected as the seed regions for testing the resting-state functional connectivity in the second experiment. We found higher functional connectivity in default mode network, salience network and executive control network in basketball players compared to novices. We conclude that the morphology and functional connectivity in cortical neuronal networks in athletes and novices are different. PMID:28101012

  20. Morphological and Functional Differences between Athletes and Novices in Cortical Neuronal Networks.

    PubMed

    Tan, Xiao-Ying; Pi, Yan-Ling; Wang, Jue; Li, Xue-Pei; Zhang, Lan-Lan; Dai, Wen; Zhu, Hua; Ni, Zhen; Zhang, Jian; Wu, Yin

    2016-01-01

    The cortical structural and functional differences in athletes and novices were investigated with a cross-sectional paradigm. We measured the gray matter volumes and resting-state functional connectivity in 21 basketball players and 21 novices with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques. It was found that gray matter volume in the left anterior insula (AI), inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), inferior parietal lobule (IPL) and right anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), precuneus is greater in basketball players than that in novices. These five brain regions were selected as the seed regions for testing the resting-state functional connectivity in the second experiment. We found higher functional connectivity in default mode network, salience network and executive control network in basketball players compared to novices. We conclude that the morphology and functional connectivity in cortical neuronal networks in athletes and novices are different.

  1. Olfactory and cortical projections to bulbar and hippocampal adult-born neurons

    PubMed Central

    De La Rosa-Prieto, Carlos; De Moya-Pinilla, Miguel; Saiz-Sanchez, Daniel; Ubeda-banon, Isabel; Arzate, Dulce M.; Flores-Cuadrado, Alicia; Liberia, Teresa; Crespo, Carlos; Martinez-Marcos, Alino

    2015-01-01

    New neurons are continually generated in the subependymal layer of the lateral ventricles and the subgranular zone of dentate gyrus during adulthood. In the subventricular zone, neuroblasts migrate a long distance to the olfactory bulb where they differentiate into granule or periglomerular interneurons. In the hippocampus, neuroblasts migrate a short distance from the subgranular zone to the granule cell layer of the dentate gyrus to become granule neurons. In addition to the short-distance inputs, bulbar interneurons receive long-distance centrifugal afferents from olfactory-recipient structures. Similarly, dentate granule cells receive differential inputs from the medial and lateral entorhinal cortices through the perforant pathway. Little is known concerning these new inputs on the adult-born cells. In this work, we have characterized afferent inputs to 21-day old newly-born neurons. Mice were intraperitoneally injected with bromodeoxyuridine. Two weeks later, rhodamine-labeled dextran-amine was injected into the anterior olfactory nucleus, olfactory tubercle, piriform cortex and lateral and medial entorhinal cortices. One week later, animals were perfused and immunofluorescences were carried out. The data show that projection neurons from the mentioned structures, establish putative synaptic contacts onto 21-day-old neurons in the olfactory bulb and dentate gyrus, in some cases even before they start to express specific subpopulation proteins. Long-distance afferents reach middle and outer one-third portions of the molecular layer of the dentate gyrus and granule and, interestingly, periglomerular layers of the olfactory bulb. In the olfactory bulb, these fibers appear to establish presumptive axo-somatic contacts onto newly-born granule and periglomerular cells. PMID:25698936

  2. Identification of axon-enriched microRNAs localized to growth cones of cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Yukio; Gross, Christina; Xing, Lei; Goshima, Yoshio; Bassell, Gary J

    2014-03-01

    There is increasing evidence that localized mRNAs in axons and growth cones play an important role in axon extension and pathfinding via local translation. A few studies have revealed the presence of microRNAs (miRNAs) in axons, which may control local protein synthesis during axon development. However, so far, there has been no attempt to screen for axon-enriched miRNAs and to validate their possible localization to growth cones of developing axons from neurons of the central nervous system. In this study, the localization of miRNAs in axons and growth cones in cortical neurons was examined using a "neuron ball" culture method that is suitable to prepare axonal miRNAs with high yield and purity. Axonal miRNAs prepared from the neuron ball cultures of mouse cortical neurons were analyzed by quantitative real-time RT-PCR. Among 375 miRNAs that were analyzed, 105 miRNAs were detected in axons, and six miRNAs were significantly enriched in axonal fractions when compared with cell body fractions. Fluorescence in situ hybridization revealed that two axon-enriched miRNAs, miR-181a-1* and miR-532, localized as distinct granules in distal axons and growth cones. The association of these miRNAs with the RNA-induced silencing complex further supported their function to regulate mRNA levels or translation in the brain. These results suggest a mechanism to localize specific miRNAs to distal axons and growth cones, where they could be involved in local mRNA regulation. These findings provide new insight into the presence of axonal miRNAs and motivate further analysis of their function in local protein synthesis underlying axon guidance.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-28

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

  4. PACAP38 protects rat cortical neurons against the neurotoxicity evoked by sodium nitroprusside and thrombin

    PubMed Central

    Sanchez, Alma; Rao, Haripriya Vittal; Grammas, Paula

    2009-01-01

    Pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP) 38 is a multifunctional anti-inflammatory and anti-apoptotic neuropeptide widely distributed in the nervous system. The objective of this study is to determine whether PACAP38 is neuroprotective against sodium nitroprusside (SNP) and thrombin, two mechanistically distinct neurotoxic agents. Treatment of primary cortical neuronal cultures with 1 mM SNP for 4 h causes neuronal cell death that is significantly reduced by 100 nM PACAP38. PACAP38 down-regulates SNP-induced cell cycle protein (cyclin E) expression and up-regulates p57KIP2, a cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor as well as the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2. Similarly, neuronal death induced by 100 nM thrombin or the thrombin receptor activating peptide (TRAP 6) is reduced by PACAP38 treatment. Thrombin-stimulated cell cycle protein (cdk4) expression is decreased by PACAP38 while PACAP38 inhibits thrombin-mediated reduction of p57KIP2. However, the decrease in Bcl-2 evoked by thrombin is not affected by PACAP38. Finally, both SNP and thrombin (or TRAP) increase caspase 3 activity, an effect that is decreased by PACAP38. These data show that PACAP38 supports neuronal survival in vitro suppressing cell cycle progression and enhancing anti-apoptotic proteins. Our results support the possibility that PACAP could be a useful therapeutic agent for reducing neuronal cell death in neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:18682263

  5. Active engagement improves primary auditory cortical neurons' ability to discriminate temporal modulation.

    PubMed

    Niwa, Mamiko; Johnson, Jeffrey S; O'Connor, Kevin N; Sutter, Mitchell L

    2012-07-04

    The effect of attention on single neuron responses in the auditory system is unresolved. We found that when monkeys discriminated temporally amplitude modulated (AM) from unmodulated sounds, primary auditory cortical (A1) neurons better discriminated those sounds than when the monkeys were not discriminating them. This was observed for both average firing rate and vector strength (VS), a measure of how well neurons temporally follow the stimulus' temporal modulation. When data were separated by nonsynchronized and synchronized responses, the firing rate of nonsynchronized responses best distinguished AM- noise from unmodulated noise, followed by VS for synchronized responses, with firing rate for synchronized neurons providing the poorest AM discrimination. Firing rate-based AM discrimination for synchronized neurons, however, improved most with task engagement, showing that the least sensitive code in the passive condition improves the most with task engagement. Rate coding improved due to larger increases in absolute firing rate at higher modulation depths than for lower depths and unmodulated sounds. Relative to spontaneous activity (which increased with engagement), the response to unmodulated sounds decreased substantially. The temporal coding improvement--responses more precisely temporally following a stimulus when animals were required to attend to it--expands the framework of possible mechanisms of attention to include increasing temporal precision of stimulus following. These findings provide a crucial step to understanding the coding of temporal modulation and support a model in which rate and temporal coding work in parallel, permitting a multiplexed code for temporal modulation, and for a complementary representation of rate and temporal coding.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-10-01

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

  7. 14,15-EET promotes mitochondrial biogenesis and protects cortical neurons against oxygen/glucose deprivation-induced apoptosis

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Lai; Chen, Man; Yuan, Lin; Xiang, Yuting; Zheng, Ruimao; Zhu, Shigong

    2014-07-18

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-08-01

    Seizure activity is linked to astrocyte activation as well as dysfunctional cortical neuron excitability produced from changes in calcium-activated potassium (KCa) channel function. Ciliary neurotrophic factor-treated astrocyte conditioned medium (CNTF-ACM) can be used to investigate the peripheral effects of activated astrocytes upon cortical neurons. However, CNTF-ACM's effect upon KCa channel activity in cultured cortical neurons has not yet been investigated. Whole-cell patch clamp recordings were performed in rat cortical neurons to evaluate CNTF-ACM's effects upon charybdotoxin-sensitive large-conductance KCa (BK) channel currents and apamin-sensitive small-conductance KCa (SK) channel current. Biotinylation and RT-PCR were applied to assess CNTF-ACM's effects upon the protein and mRNA expression, respectively, of the SK channel subunits SK2 and SK3 and the BK channel subunits BKα1 and BKβ3. An anti-fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) monoclonal neutralizing antibody was used to assess the effects of the FGF-2 component of CNTF-ACM. CNTF-ACM significantly increased KCa channel current density, which was predominantly attributable to gains in BK channel activity (p < 0.05). CNTF-ACM produced a significant increase in BKα1 and BKβ3 expression (p < 0.05) but had no significant effect upon SK2 or SK3 expression (p > 0.05). Blocking FGF-2 produced significant reductions in KCa channel current density (p > 0.05) as well as BKα1 and BKβ3 expression in CNTF-ACM-treated neurons (p > 0.05). CNTF-ACM significantly enhances BK channel activity in rat cortical neurons and that FGF-2 is partially responsible for these effects. CNTF-induced astrocyte activation results in secretion of neuroactive factors which may affect neuronal excitability and resultant seizure activity in mammalian cortical neurons.

  9. [HOMOCYSTEINE-INDUCED MEMBRANE CURRENTS, CALCIUM RESPONSES AND CHANGES OF MITOCHONDRIAL POTENTIAL IN RAT CORTICAL NEURONS].

    PubMed

    Abushik, P A; Karelina, T V; Sibarov, D A; Stepanenko, J D; Giniatullin, R; Antonov, S M

    2015-01-01

    Homocysteine, a sulfur-containing amino acid, exhibits neurotoxic effects and is involved in the pathogenesis of several major neurodegenerative disorders. In contrast to well studied excitoxicity of glutamate, the mechanism of homocysteine neurotoxicity is not clearly understood. By using whole-cell patch-clamp, calcium imaging (fluo-3) and measurements of mitochondrial membrane potential (rhodamine 123) we studied transmembrane currents, calcium signals and changes in mitochondrial membrane potential induced by homocysteine versus responses induced by NMDA and glutamate in cultured rat cortical neurons. L-homocysteine (50 µM) induced inward currents that could be completely blocked by the selective antagonist of NMDA receptors - AP-5. In contrast to NMDA-induced currents, homocysteine-induced currents had a smaller steady-state amplitude. Comparison of calcium responses to homocysteine, NMDA or glutamate demonstrated that in all cortical neurons homocysteine elicited short, oscillatory-type calcium responses, whereas NMDA or glutamate induced sustained increase of intracellular calcium. Analysis of mitochondrial changes demonstrated that in contrast to NMDA homocysteine did not cause a drop of mitochondrial membrane potential at the early stages of action. However, after its long-term action, as in the case of NMDA and glutamate, the changes in mitochondrial membrane potential were comparable with the full drop of respiratory chain induced by protonophore FCCP. Our data suggest that in cultured rat cortical neuron homocysteine at the first stages of action induces neurotoxic effects through activation of NMDA-type ionotropic glutamate receptors with strong calcium influx through the channels of these receptors. The long-term action of homocysteine may lead to mitochondrial disfuction and appears as a drop of mitochondrial membrane potential.

  10. Decoding of finger, hand and arm kinematics using switching linear dynamical systems with pre-motor cortical ensembles.

    PubMed

    Kang, Xiaoxu; Schieber, Marc H; Thakor, Nitish V

    2012-01-01

    Previous works in Brain-Machine Interfaces (BMI) have mostly used a single Kalman filter decoder for deriving continuous kinematics in the complete execution of behavioral tasks. A linear dynamical system may not be able to generalize the sequence whose dynamics changes over time. Examples of such data include human motion such as walking, running, and dancing each of which exhibit complex constantly evolving dynamics. Switching linear dynamical systems (S-LDSs) are powerful models capable of describing a physical process governed by state equations that switch from time to time. The present work demonstrates the motion-state-dependent adaptive decoding of hand and arm kinematics in four different behavioral tasks. Single-unit neural activities were recorded from cortical ensembles in the ventral and dorsal premotor (PMv and PMd) areas of a trained rhesus monkey during four different reach-to-grasp tasks. We constructed S-LDSs for decoding of continuous hand and arm kinematics based on different epochs of the experiments, namely, baseline, pre-movement planning, movement, and final fixation. Average decoding accuracies as high as 89.9%, 88.6%, 89.8%, 89.4%, were achieved for motion-state-dependent decoding across four different behavioral tasks, respectively (p<0.05); these results are higher than previous works using a single Kalman filter (accuracy: 0.83). These results demonstrate that the adaptive decoding approach, or motion-state-dependent decoding, may have a larger descriptive capability than the decoding approach using a single decoder. This is a critical step towards the development of a BMI for adaptive neural control of a clinically viable prosthesis.

  11. Prenatal Exposure to Benzo(a)pyrene Impairs Later-Life Cortical Neuronal Function

    PubMed Central

    McCallister, Monique M.; Maguire, Mark; Ramesh, Aramandla; Aimin, Qiao; Liu, Sheng; Khoshbouei, Habibeh; Aschner, Michael; Ebner, Ford F.; Hood, Darryl B.

    2009-01-01

    Prenatal exposure to environmental contaminants, such as Benzo(a)pyrene [B(a)P] has been shown to impair brain development. The overarching hypothesis of our work is that glutamate receptor subunit expression is crucial for cortical evoked responses and that prenatal B(a)P exposure modulates the temporal developmental expression of glutamatergic receptor subunits in the somatosensory cortex. To characterize prenatal B(a)P exposure on the development of cortical function, pregnant Long Evans rats were exposed to low-level B(a)P (300μg/kg BW) by oral gavage on gestational days 14 to 17. At this exposure dose, there was no significant effect of B(a)P on 1) the number of pups born per litter, 2) the pre-weaning growth curves and 3) initial and final brain to body weight ratios. Control and B(a)P-exposed offspring were profiled for B(a)P metabolites in plasma and whole brain during the pre-weaning period. No detectable levels of metabolites were found in the control offspring. However, a time-dependent decrease in total metabolite concentration was observed in B(a)P-exposed offspring. On PND100-120, cerebrocortical mRNA expression was determined for the glutamatergic NMDA receptor subunit (NR2B) in control and B(a)P-exposed offspring. Neural activity was also recorded from neurons in primary somatic sensory (barrel) cortex. Semiquantitative PCR from B(a)P-exposed offspring revealed a significant 50% reduction in NR2B mRNA expression in B(a)P-exposed offspring relative to controls. Recordings from B(a)P-exposed offspring revealed that N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor -dependent neuronal activity in barrel cortex evoked by whisker stimulation was also significantly reduced (70%) as compared to controls. Analysis showed that the greatest deficit in cortical neuronal responses occurred in the shorter latency epochs from 5-20ms post-stimulus. The results suggest that in utero exposure to benzo(a)pyrene results in diminished mRNA expression of the NMDA NR2B receptor

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-12-20

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

  13. Differential effects of cortical neurotrophic factors on development of lateral geniculate nucleus and superior colliculus neurons: anterograde and retrograde actions.

    PubMed

    Wahle, Petra; Di Cristo, Graziella; Schwerdtfeger, Gudrun; Engelhardt, Maren; Berardi, Nicoletta; Maffei, Lamberto

    2003-02-01

    Neurotrophins strongly affect visual system development and plasticity. However, the mode of delivery and targets of neurotrophin action are still under debate. For instance, cortical NT-4/5 (neurotrophin 4/5; Ntf4/5) was shown to rescue lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) neurons from monocular deprivation-induced atrophy suggesting a retrograde action on thalamic afferents. It is still unclear whether LGN neurons respond to NT-4/5 and other neurotrophins during development in animals with normal vision. We now show that infusions of NT-4/5 and NGF (nerve growth factor) into visual cortex at the onset and the peak of the critical period accelerated LGN neuron growth. BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) was ineffective. The effects of neurotrophin on LGN development were clearly dissociated from the effects at cortical level because soma growth of cortical layer IV and VI neurons was strongly promoted by BDNF. NT-4/5 was only effective at the onset, but no longer at the peak of the critical period suggesting a switch in neurotrophin dependency for these cortical cell classes. To dissociate retrograde and anterograde effects of the TrkB ligands, we analyzed the stratum griseum superficiale (SGS) of the superior colliculus, a target of visual cortical efferents. Indeed, TrkB-expressing inhibitory SGS neurons responded to cortical NT-4/5 infusion with somatic growth. Strikingly, the TrkB-expressing excitatory tectothalamic calbindin neurons in the SGS did not respond. This demonstrated for the first time a selective cell type-specific anterograde action of NT-4/5 and suggested for the LGN that anterograde as well as retrograde effects contribute to soma size regulation. Strikingly, cortical infusion of the cytokine LIF, which affects development of visual cortex neurochemical architecture, transiently inhibited growth of neurons in LGN, cortical layer IV and VI and SGS. In summary, the study presents three important results. First, central neurons regulate soma size

  14. Rapid modulation of synaptogenesis and spinogenesis by 17β-estradiol in primary cortical neurons

    PubMed Central

    Sellers, Katherine J.; Erli, Filippo; Raval, Pooja; Watson, Iain A.; Chen, Ding; Srivastava, Deepak P.

    2015-01-01

    In the mammalian forebrain, the majority of excitatory synapses occur on dendritic spines. Changes in the number of these structures is important for brain development, plasticity and the refinement of neuronal circuits. The formation of excitatory synapses involves the coordinated formation of dendritic spines and targeting of multi-protein complexes to nascent connections. Recent studies have demonstrated that the estrogen 17β-estradiol (E2) can rapidly increase the number of dendritic spines, an effect consistent with the ability of E2 to rapidly influence cognitive function. However, the molecular composition of E2-induced spines and whether these protrusions form synaptic connections has not been fully elucidated. Moreover, which estrogen receptor(s) (ER) mediate these spine-morphogenic responses are not clear. Here, we report that acute E2 treatment results in the recruitment of postsynaptic density protein 95 (PSD-95) to novel dendritic spines. In addition neuroligin 1 (Nlg-1) and the NMDA receptor subunit GluN1 are recruited to nascent synapses in cortical neurons. The presence of these synaptic proteins at nascent synapses suggests that the machinery to allow pre- and post-synapses to form connections are present in E2-induced spines. We further demonstrate that E2 treatment results in the rapid and transient activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2), Akt and the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling pathways. However, only ERK1/2 and Akt are required for E2-mediated spinogenesis. Using synthetic receptor modulators, we further demonstrate that activation of the estrogen receptor beta (ERβ) but not alpha (ERα) mimics rapid E2-induced spinogenesis and synaptogenesis. Taken together these findings suggest that in primary cortical neurons, E2 signaling via ERβ, but not through ERα, is capable of remodeling neuronal circuits by increasing the number of excitatory synapses. PMID:25926772

  15. Attenuation of Responses to Self-Generated Sounds in Auditory Cortical Neurons.

    PubMed

    Rummell, Brian P; Klee, Jan L; Sigurdsson, Torfi

    2016-11-23

    Many of the sounds that we perceive are caused by our own actions, for example when speaking or moving, and must be distinguished from sounds caused by external events. Studies using macroscopic measurements of brain activity in human subjects have consistently shown that responses to self-generated sounds are attenuated in amplitude. However, the underlying manifestation of this phenomenon at the cellular level is not well understood. To address this, we recorded the activity of neurons in the auditory cortex of mice in response to sounds generated by their own behavior. We found that the responses of auditory cortical neurons to these self-generated sounds were consistently attenuated, compared with the same sounds generated independently of the animals' behavior. This effect was observed in both putative pyramidal neurons and in interneurons and was stronger in lower layers of auditory cortex. Downstream of the auditory cortex, we found that responses of hippocampal neurons to self-generated sounds were almost entirely suppressed. Responses to self-generated optogenetic stimulation of auditory thalamocortical terminals were also attenuated, suggesting a cortical contribution to this effect. Further analyses revealed that the attenuation of self-generated sounds was not simply due to the nonspecific effects of movement or behavioral state on auditory responsiveness. However, the strength of attenuation depended on the degree to which self-generated sounds were expected to occur, in a cell-type-specific manner. Together, these results reveal the cellular basis underlying attenuated responses to self-generated sounds and suggest that predictive processes contribute to this effect.

  16. Neuronal avalanches organize as nested theta- and beta/gamma-oscillations during development of cortical layer 2/3.

    PubMed

    Gireesh, Elakkat D; Plenz, Dietmar

    2008-05-27

    Maturation of the cerebral cortex involves the spontaneous emergence of distinct patterns of neuronal synchronization, which regulate neuronal differentiation, synapse formation, and serve as a substrate for information processing. The intrinsic activity patterns that characterize the maturation of cortical layer 2/3 are poorly understood. By using microelectrode array recordings in vivo and in vitro, we show that this development is marked by the emergence of nested - and beta/gamma-oscillations that require NMDA- and GABA(A)-mediated synaptic transmission. The oscillations organized as neuronal avalanches, i.e., they were synchronized across cortical sites forming diverse and millisecond-precise spatiotemporal patterns that distributed in sizes according to a power law with a slope of -1.5. The correspondence between nested oscillations and neuronal avalanches required activation of the dopamine D(1) receptor. We suggest that the repetitive formation of neuronal avalanches provides an intrinsic template for the selective linking of external inputs to developing superficial layers.

  17. Proneural transcription factors regulate different steps of cortical neuron migration through Rnd-mediated inhibition of RhoA signaling.

    PubMed

    Pacary, Emilie; Heng, Julian; Azzarelli, Roberta; Riou, Philippe; Castro, Diogo; Lebel-Potter, Mélanie; Parras, Carlos; Bell, Donald M; Ridley, Anne J; Parsons, Maddy; Guillemot, François

    2011-03-24

    Little is known of the intracellular machinery that controls the motility of newborn neurons. We have previously shown that the proneural protein Neurog2 promotes the migration of nascent cortical neurons by inducing the expression of the atypical Rho GTPase Rnd2. Here, we show that another proneural factor, Ascl1, promotes neuronal migration in the cortex through direct regulation of a second Rnd family member, Rnd3. Both Rnd2 and Rnd3 promote neuronal migration by inhibiting RhoA signaling, but they control distinct steps of the migratory process, multipolar to bipolar transition in the intermediate zone and locomotion in the cortical plate, respectively. Interestingly, these divergent functions directly result from the distinct subcellular distributions of the two Rnd proteins. Because Rnd proteins also regulate progenitor divisions and neurite outgrowth, we propose that proneural factors, through spatiotemporal regulation of Rnd proteins, integrate the process of neuronal migration with other events in the neurogenic program.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-10-01

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

  19. Cortical neurons of bats respond best to echoes from nearest targets when listening to natural biosonar multi-echo streams

    PubMed Central

    Beetz, M. Jerome; Hechavarría, Julio C.; Kössl, Manfred

    2016-01-01

    Bats orientate in darkness by listening to echoes from their biosonar calls, a behaviour known as echolocation. Recent studies showed that cortical neurons respond in a highly selective manner when stimulated with natural echolocation sequences that contain echoes from single targets. However, it remains unknown how cortical neurons process echolocation sequences containing echo information from multiple objects. In the present study, we used echolocation sequences containing echoes from three, two or one object separated in the space depth as stimuli to study neuronal activity in the bat auditory cortex. Neuronal activity was recorded with multi-electrode arrays placed in the dorsal auditory cortex, where neurons tuned to target-distance are found. Our results show that target-distance encoding neurons are mostly selective to echoes coming from the closest object, and that the representation of echo information from distant objects is selectively suppressed. This suppression extends over a large part of the dorsal auditory cortex and may override possible parallel processing of multiple objects. The presented data suggest that global cortical suppression might establish a cortical “default mode” that allows selectively focusing on close obstacle even without active attention from the animals. PMID:27786252

  20. Complex Spectral Interactions Encoded by Auditory Cortical Neurons: Relationship Between Bandwidth and Pattern

    PubMed Central

    O'Connor, Kevin N.; Yin, Pingbo; Petkov, Christopher I.; Sutter, Mitchell L.

    2010-01-01

    The focus of most research on auditory cortical neurons has concerned the effects of rather simple stimuli, such as pure tones or broad-band noise, or the modulation of a single acoustic parameter. Extending these findings to feature coding in more complex stimuli such as natural sounds may be difficult, however. Generalizing results from the simple to more complex case may be complicated by non-linear interactions occurring between multiple, simultaneously varying acoustic parameters in complex sounds. To examine this issue in the frequency domain, we performed a parametric study of the effects of two global features, spectral pattern (here ripple frequency) and bandwidth, on primary auditory (A1) neurons in awake macaques. Most neurons were tuned for one or both variables and most also displayed an interaction between bandwidth and pattern implying that their effects were conditional or interdependent. A spectral linear filter model was able to qualitatively reproduce the basic effects and interactions, indicating that a simple neural mechanism may be able to account for these interdependencies. Our results suggest that the behavior of most A1 neurons is likely to depend on multiple parameters, and so most are unlikely to respond independently or invariantly to specific acoustic features. PMID:21152347

  1. Angiotensin protects cortical neurons from hypoxic-induced apoptosis via the angiotensin type 2 receptor.

    PubMed

    Grammatopoulos, Tom; Morris, Katherine; Ferguson, Paul; Weyhenmeyer, James

    2002-03-28

    The effects of angiotensin on mouse cortical neuronal cultures exposed to chemical-induced hypoxia was investigated. Cultures exposed to 10 mM sodium azide for 5 min showed a 17% increase in apoptosis when assayed 24 h postinsult. The N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist MK-801 blocked sodium azide-induced cell death suggesting that the NMDA receptor contributes to the mediated cell death. Pretreatment of cultured neurons with angiotensin decreased sodium azide-induced apoptosis by 94%. When the AT(1) receptor was blocked by its receptor antagonist, losartan, angiotensin activation of the AT(2) receptor completely inhibited sodium azide-induced apoptosis. Pretreatment of neurons with the AT(2) receptor antagonist PD123319 resulted in angiotensin reducing sodium azide-induced apoptosis by 48%. These results demonstrate that angiotensin can significantly attenuate sodium azide-induced apoptosis primarily through activation of the AT(2) receptor and suggests that angiotensin may have a protective role in neurons undergoing ischemic injury.

  2. Conditioning of cortical neurons in cats with antidromic activation as the unconditioned stimulus.

    PubMed

    O'Brien, J H; Wilder, M B; Stevens, C D

    1977-08-01

    Single-cell activity was recorded from the postcruciate cortex of acutely prepared cats during a differential classical conditioning procedure. The conditioned stimuli (CS) were hind paw stimuli, and the unconditioned stimulus (US) was pyramidal tract stimulation that produced an antidromic response in the recorded cortical neuron. A control group was also examined in which the pyramidal stimulus was set below the threshold to produce an antidromic response. Clear differential conditioning was found for the experimental group, with antidromic activation of the neuron as the US. There was no evidence of differential conditioning in the control group without antidromic activation. Any activation of orthodromic pathways should have been the same in the control and experimental groups. The absence of conditioning in the control group demonstrated that orthodromic pathways were not contributing to the differential conditioning observed in the experimental group. This indicates that it was activation of the neuron produced by antidromic firing which was important for conditioning. All the evidence suggests that the site of learning was in the cortex. It is concluded that the the role of the US in conditioning may be simply to activate the neuron at an appropriate interval following the CS.

  3. Cortical discrimination of complex natural stimuli: can single neurons match behavior?

    PubMed

    Wang, Le; Narayan, Rajiv; Graña, Gilberto; Shamir, Maoz; Sen, Kamal

    2007-01-17

    A central finding in many cortical areas is that single neurons can match behavioral performance in the discrimination of sensory stimuli. However, whether this is true for natural behaviors involving complex natural stimuli remains unknown. Here we use the model system of songbirds to address this problem. Specifically, we investigate whether neurons in field L, the homolog of primary auditory cortex, can match behavioral performance in the discrimination of conspecific songs. We use a classification framework based on the (dis)similarity between single spike trains to quantify neural discrimination. We use this framework to investigate the discriminability of single spike trains in field L in response to conspecific songs, testing different candidate neural codes underlying discrimination. We find that performance based on spike timing is significantly higher than performance based on spike rate and interspike intervals. We then assess the impact of temporal correlations in spike trains on discrimination. In contrast to widely discussed effects of correlations in limiting the accuracy of a population code, temporal correlations appear to improve the performance of single neurons in the majority of cases. Finally, we compare neural performance with behavioral performance. We find a diverse range of performance levels in field L, with neural performance matching behavioral accuracy only for the best neurons using a spike-timing-based code.

  4. Molecular Pathways Underlying Projection Neuron Production and Migration during Cerebral Cortical Development

    PubMed Central

    Ohtaka-Maruyama, Chiaki; Okado, Haruo

    2015-01-01

    Glutamatergic neurons of the mammalian cerebral cortex originate from radial glia (RG) progenitors in the ventricular zone (VZ). During corticogenesis, neuroblasts migrate toward the pial surface using two different migration modes. One is multipolar (MP) migration with random directional movement, and the other is locomotion, which is a unidirectional movement guided by the RG fiber. After reaching their final destination, the neurons finalize their migration by terminal translocation, which is followed by maturation via dendrite extension to initiate synaptogenesis and thereby complete neural circuit formation. This switching of migration modes during cortical development is unique in mammals, which suggests that the RG-guided locomotion mode may contribute to the evolution of the mammalian neocortical 6-layer structure. Many factors have been reported to be involved in the regulation of this radial neuronal migration process. In general, the radial migration can be largely divided into four steps; (1) maintenance and departure from the VZ of neural progenitor cells, (2) MP migration and transition to bipolar cells, (3) RG-guided locomotion, and (4) terminal translocation and dendrite maturation. Among these, many different gene mutations or knockdown effects have resulted in failure of the MP to bipolar transition (step 2), suggesting that it is a critical step, particularly in radial migration. Moreover, this transition occurs at the subplate layer. In this review, we summarize recent advances in our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying each of these steps. Finally, we discuss the evolutionary aspects of neuronal migration in corticogenesis. PMID:26733777

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2010-09-08

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

  6. Panaxydol and panaxynol protect cultured cortical neurons against Abeta25-35-induced toxicity.

    PubMed

    Nie, Bao-Ming; Jiang, Xiao-Yan; Cai, Jin-Xian; Fu, Sai-Li; Yang, Li-Min; Lin, Lin; Hang, Qin; Lu, Pei-Lua; Lu, Yang

    2008-04-01

    Amyloid beta protein (Abeta), the central constituent of senile plaques in Alzheimer's disease (AD), is known to exert toxic effects on cultured neurons. In the present study, the protective effect of panaxydol (PND) and panaxynol (PNN) on Abeta25-35-induced neuronal apoptosis and potential mechanisms were investigated in primary cultured rat cortical neurons. Pretreatment of the cells with PND or PNN prior to 10 microM Abeta25-35 exposure resulted significantly in elevation of cell survival determined by MTT assay, TUNEL/Hoechst staining and western blot. Furthermore, a marked increase in calcium influx and intracellular free radical generation was found after Abeta25-35 exposure, which could be almost completely reversed by pretreatment of PND or PNN. PND and PNN could also alleviate Abeta25-35-induced early-stage neuronal degeneration. These results indicated that inhibition of calcium influx and free radical generation is a mechanism of the anti-apoptotic action of PND and PNN. Since Abeta plays critical roles in the pathogenesis of AD, these findings raise the possibility that PND and PNN reduce neurodegeneration in AD.

  7. Effects of Aging on Paired-Pulse Behavior of Rat Somatosensory Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Dinse, Hubert R.

    2010-01-01

    Aging affects all levels of neural processing including changes of intracortical inhibition and cortical excitability. The paired-pulse stimulation protocol, the application of 2 stimuli in close succession, is used to investigate cortical excitability. The paired-pulse behavior is characterized by the fact that the second response is significantly suppressed at short interstimulus intervals (ISIs) but approaches the first response with increasing ISIs. However, there are controversial reports about the influence of age on paired-pulse behavior. We therefore used pairs of tactile stimuli (ISIs from tens to hundreds of milliseconds) to record extracellular responses of somatosensory cortical neurons of young and aged rats. Paired-pulse behavior was quantified as the ratio of the amplitude of the second response divided by the first. For all ISIs, we found significantly higher ratios in the old animals indicating reduced paired-pulse suppression (PPS). Evaluation of the single response components revealed a significant reduction of the response to the first stimulus for old animals but no age-dependent decrement to the second. Changes in PPS are usually mediated by modulating the second response characteristics. Thus, our data demonstrate reduced PPS due to an overall reduction of the first response as a form of modified PPS developing at old age. PMID:19745019

  8. Primates exposed to cocaine in utero display reduced density and number of cerebral cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Lidow, M S; Song, Z M

    2001-07-02

    This study examined the effects of cocaine use during the second trimester of pregnancy on cerebral neocortical volume and density, and total number of neocortical neurons and glia in offspring. We also evaluated the extent of postnatal recovery of cytoarchitectural abnormalities previously observed in the neocortex of two-month-old primates born from cocaine-treated mothers (Lidow [1995] Synapse 21:332-334). Pregnant monkeys received cocaine orally (20 mg/kg/day) from the 40th to 102nd days of pregnancy (embryonic day [E]40-E102). On E64 and E65, the animals were injected with [(3)H]thymidine. Cerebral hemispheres of the offspring were examined at three years of age. We found a reduction in the neocortical volume and density and total number of neocortical neurons. The observed reduction in neuronal number within the neocortex was not accounted for by the increase in the number of neurons in the white matter of cocaine-exposed animals, because the number of these "extra" neurons was equal to only half that of missing neurons. We detected no significant changes in the number of neocortical glia. The cytoarchitectural abnormalities in the neocortex of prenatally cocaine-exposed three-year-old monkeys closely resembled previously described neocortical abnormalities in similarly exposed two-month-old animals: the neocortex lacked a discernible lamination; the majority of the cells labeled by [(3)H]thymidine injected during neocortical neurogenesis did not reach their proper position within the cortical plate. Therefore, postnatal maturation is not associated with significant improvement in neocortical organization in primates prenatally exposed to cocaine. There was, however, a postnatal recovery of low glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) immunoreactivity previously observed in 2-month-old cocaine-exposed animals.

  9. Neuroprotective effect of the endogenous neural peptide apelin in cultured mouse cortical neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Zeng, Xiang Jun; Yu, Shan Ping; Zhang, Like; Wei, Ling

    2010-07-01

    The adipocytokine apelin and its G protein-coupled APJ receptor were initially isolated from a bovine stomach and have been detected in the brain and cardiovascular system. Recent studies suggest that apelin can protect cardiomyocytes from ischemic injury. Here, we investigated the effect of apelin on apoptosis in mouse primary cultures of cortical neurons. Exposure of the cortical cultures to a serum-free medium for 24 h induced nuclear fragmentation and apoptotic death; apelin-13 (1.0-5.0 nM) markedly prevented the neuronal apoptosis. Apelin neuroprotective effects were mediated by multiple mechanisms. Apelin-13 reduced serum deprivation (SD)-induced ROS generation, mitochondria depolarization, cytochrome c release and activation of caspase-3. Apelin-13 prevented SD-induced changes in phosphorylation status of Akt and ERK1/2. In addition, apelin-13 attenuated NMDA-induced intracellular Ca{sup 2+} accumulation. These results indicate that apelin is an endogenous neuroprotective adipocytokine that may block apoptosis and excitotoxic death via cellular and molecular mechanisms. It is suggested that apelins may be further explored as a potential neuroprotective reagent for ischemia-induced brain damage.

  10. Effect of nano-hydroxyapatite on the axonal guidance growth of rat cortical neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Meili; Zhou, Gang; Song, Wei; Li, Ping; Liu, Haifeng; Niu, Xufeng; Fan, Yubo

    2012-05-01

    Nanomaterials such as carbon nanotubes (CNT) can improve axonal connecting in a target direction during regeneration, however, it is limited by the neurotoxicity of CNT. Here we investigate the possible protective effect of nano-hydroxyapatite (n-HA) against nerve injury, as well as CNT in cultured rat cortical neurons. In this study the nanomaterials were characterized by X-Ray diffractometry (XRD) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) analysis. Our results showed that axonal migration and extension were increased significantly after n-HA treatment by immunocytochemistry assay. The patch clamp assay results showed that n-HA acts protectively after nerve injury, which inhibited the average amplitude and frequency of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs). n-HA is not neurotoxic for the electrophysiology activity of cells. To find the effect of n-HA on axonal guidance growth in the cultured cortical neurons, Netrin 1, one of the axonal guidance cues, was determined by RT-PCR and western blot assay. Compared to the control group, n-HA down-regulated the mRNA level of netrin 1, and moreover, the expression of netrin 1 decreased significantly in the cells. n-HA caused the axonal guidance growth to be mediated by netrin 1 during nerve regeneration. Therefore, the data from the present study provided a new approach for the therapy or prevention of nerve injury.

  11. Neuronal Oscillations Indicate Sleep-dependent Changes in the Cortical Memory Trace.

    PubMed

    Köster, Moritz; Finger, Holger; Kater, Maren-Jo; Schenk, Christoph; Gruber, Thomas

    2017-04-01

    Sleep promotes the consolidation of newly acquired associative memories. Here we used neuronal oscillations in the human EEG to investigate sleep-dependent changes in the cortical memory trace. The retrieval activity for object-color associations was assessed immediately after encoding and after 3 hr of sleep or wakefulness. Sleep had beneficial effects on memory performance and led to reduced event-related theta and gamma power during the retrieval of associative memories. Furthermore, event-related alpha suppression was attenuated in the wake group for memorized and novel stimuli. There were no sleep-dependent changes in retrieval activity for missed items or items retrieved without color. Thus, the sleep-dependent reduction in theta and gamma oscillations was specific for the retrieval of associative memories. In line with theoretical accounts on sleep-dependent memory consolidation, decreased theta may indicate reduced mediotemporal activity because of a transfer of information into neocortical networks during sleep, whereas reduced parietal gamma may reflect effects of synaptic downscaling. Changes in alpha suppression in the wake group possibly index reduced attentional resources that may also contribute to a lower memory performance in this group. These findings indicate that the consolidation of associative memories during sleep is associated with profound changes in the cortical memory trace and relies on multiple neuronal processes working in concert.

  12. TRPV1 stimulation triggers apoptotic cell death of rat cortical neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Shirakawa, Hisashi; Yamaoka, Tomoko; Sanpei, Kazuaki; Sasaoka, Hirotoshi; Nakagawa, Takayuki; Kaneko, Shuji

    2008-12-26

    Transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) functions as a polymodal nociceptor and is activated by several vanilloids, including capsaicin, protons and heat. Although TRPV1 channels are widely distributed in the brain, their roles remain unclear. Here, we investigated the roles of TRPV1 in cytotoxic processes using TRPV1-expressing cultured rat cortical neurons. Capsaicin induced severe neuronal death with apoptotic features, which was completely inhibited by the TRPV1 antagonist capsazepine and was dependent on extracellular Ca{sup 2+} influx. Interestingly, nifedipine, a specific L-type Ca{sup 2+} channel blocker, attenuated capsaicin cytotoxicity, even when applied 2-4 h after the capsaicin. ERK inhibitor PD98059 and several antioxidants, but not the JNK and p38 inhibitors, attenuated capsaicin cytotoxicity. Together, these data indicate that TRPV1 activation triggers apoptotic cell death of rat cortical cultures via L-type Ca{sup 2+} channel opening, Ca{sup 2+} influx, ERK phosphorylation, and reactive oxygen species production.

  13. Generation of human cortical neurons from a new immortal fetal neural stem cell line

    SciTech Connect

    Cacci, E.; Villa, A.; Parmar, M.; Cavallaro, M.; Mandahl, N.; Lindvall, O.; Martinez-Serrano, A.; Kokaia, Z. . E-mail: Zaal.Kokaia@med.lu.se

    2007-02-01

    Isolation and expansion of neural stem cells (NSCs) of human origin are crucial for successful development of cell therapy approaches in neurodegenerative diseases. Different epigenetic and genetic immortalization strategies have been established for long-term maintenance and expansion of these cells in vitro. Here we report the generation of a new, clonal NSC (hc-NSC) line, derived from human fetal cortical tissue, based on v-myc immortalization. Using immunocytochemistry, we show that these cells retain the characteristics of NSCs after more than 50 passages. Under proliferation conditions, when supplemented with epidermal and basic fibroblast growth factors, the hc-NSCs expressed neural stem/progenitor cell markers like nestin, vimentin and Sox2. When growth factors were withdrawn, proliferation and expression of v-myc and telomerase were dramatically reduced, and the hc-NSCs differentiated into glia and neurons (mostly glutamatergic and GABAergic, as well as tyrosine hydroxylase-positive, presumably dopaminergic neurons). RT-PCR analysis showed that the hc-NSCs retained expression of Pax6, Emx2 and Neurogenin2, which are genes associated with regionalization and cell commitment in cortical precursors during brain development. Our data indicate that this hc-NSC line could be useful for exploring the potential of human NSCs to replace dead or damaged cortical cells in animal models of acute and chronic neurodegenerative diseases. Taking advantage of its clonality and homogeneity, this cell line will also be a valuable experimental tool to study the regulatory role of intrinsic and extrinsic factors in human NSC biology.

  14. Continuous neuronal ensemble control of simulated arm reaching by a human with tetraplegia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chadwick, E. K.; Blana, D.; Simeral, J. D.; Lambrecht, J.; Kim, S. P.; Cornwell, A. S.; Taylor, D. M.; Hochberg, L. R.; Donoghue, J. P.; Kirsch, R. F.

    2011-06-01

    Functional electrical stimulation (FES), the coordinated electrical activation of multiple muscles, has been used to restore arm and hand function in people with paralysis. User interfaces for such systems typically derive commands from mechanically unrelated parts of the body with retained volitional control, and are unnatural and unable to simultaneously command the various joints of the arm. Neural interface systems, based on spiking intracortical signals recorded from the arm area of motor cortex, have shown the ability to control computer cursors, robotic arms and individual muscles in intact non-human primates. Such neural interface systems may thus offer a more natural source of commands for restoring dexterous movements via FES. However, the ability to use decoded neural signals to control the complex mechanical dynamics of a reanimated human limb, rather than the kinematics of a computer mouse, has not been demonstrated. This study demonstrates the ability of an individual with long-standing tetraplegia to use cortical neuron recordings to command the real-time movements of a simulated dynamic arm. This virtual arm replicates the dynamics associated with arm mass and muscle contractile properties, as well as those of an FES feedback controller that converts user commands into the required muscle activation patterns. An individual with long-standing tetraplegia was thus able to control a virtual, two-joint, dynamic arm in real time using commands derived from an existing human intracortical interface technology. These results show the feasibility of combining such an intracortical interface with existing FES systems to provide a high-performance, natural system for restoring arm and hand function in individuals with extensive paralysis. This paper was originally submitted for the special issue containing contributions from the Fourth International Brain-Computer Interface Meeting.

  15. Continuous neuronal ensemble control of simulated arm reaching by a human with tetraplegia.

    PubMed

    Chadwick, E K; Blana, D; Simeral, J D; Lambrecht, J; Kim, S P; Cornwell, A S; Taylor, D M; Hochberg, L R; Donoghue, J P; Kirsch, R F

    2011-06-01

    Functional electrical stimulation (FES), the coordinated electrical activation of multiple muscles, has been used to restore arm and hand function in people with paralysis. User interfaces for such systems typically derive commands from mechanically unrelated parts of the body with retained volitional control, and are unnatural and unable to simultaneously command the various joints of the arm. Neural interface systems, based on spiking intracortical signals recorded from the arm area of motor cortex, have shown the ability to control computer cursors, robotic arms and individual muscles in intact non-human primates. Such neural interface systems may thus offer a more natural source of commands for restoring dexterous movements via FES. However, the ability to use decoded neural signals to control the complex mechanical dynamics of a reanimated human limb, rather than the kinematics of a computer mouse, has not been demonstrated. This study demonstrates the ability of an individual with long-standing tetraplegia to use cortical neuron recordings to command the real-time movements of a simulated dynamic arm. This virtual arm replicates the dynamics associated with arm mass and muscle contractile properties, as well as those of an FES feedback controller that converts user commands into the required muscle activation patterns. An individual with long-standing tetraplegia was thus able to control a virtual, two-joint, dynamic arm in real time using commands derived from an existing human intracortical interface technology. These results show the feasibility of combining such an intracortical interface with existing FES systems to provide a high-performance, natural system for restoring arm and hand function in individuals with extensive paralysis.

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

    PubMed

    Kang, Siu; Kitano, Katsunori; Fukai, Tomoki

    2004-04-01

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

  17. In Utero Electroporation: Assay System for Migration of Cerebral Cortical Neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tabata, Hidenori; Nakajima, Kazunori

    During the development of the cerebral cortex, the majority of cortical neurons are generated in the ventricular zone (VZ) facing the lateral ventricle and then migrate toward the pial surface to form the highly organized 6-layered cerebral cortex. Detailed profiles of these processes and their molecular mechanisms had been largely unknown because of the absence of an efficient assay system. The in vivo electroporation system was initially devised for use within chick embryos (Funahashi et al., 1999; Itasaki et al., 1999; Momose et al., 1999; Muramatsu et al., 1997), and we and other groups have used that system as a basis for developing an in utero electroporation system, which allows plasmid DNA to be introduced into cortical progenitor cells in developing mouse embryos in the uterus (Fukuchi-Shimogori and Grove, 2001; Saito and Nakatsuji, 2001; Tabata and Nakajima, 2001; Takahashi et al., 2002). In utero electroporation of other sites in the brain, including the hippocampus (Navarro-Quiroga et al., 2007), cerebral basal ganglia (Borrell et al., 2005; Nakahira et al., 2006), cortical hem (Takiguchi-Hayashi et al., 2004), and dorsal thalamus (Bonnin et al., 2007), has recently been reported. Introducing green fluorescent protein (GFP) enables the entire processes of migration and layer formation to be visualized (Ajioka and Nakajima, 2005; Sasaki et al., 2008; Tabata and Nakajima, 2002, 2003), and the role of any gene involved in these processes can be easily assessed by overexpressing the proteins or their mutants (Ohshima et al., 2007), or by knocking down the genes by the RNA interference technique (Bai et al., 2003). Furthermore, the Tet-On/Off system and/or other plasmid- vector-based technologies will expand the potential of the analyses. In this section we review the principles and methods of gene transfer into the cortical wall of mouse embryos by means of the in utero electroporation system.

  18. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-05

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

  1. Maximal variability of phase synchrony in cortical networks with neuronal avalanches.

    PubMed

    Yang, Hongdian; Shew, Woodrow L; Roy, Rajarshi; Plenz, Dietmar

    2012-01-18

    Ongoing interactions among cortical neurons often manifest as network-level synchrony. Understanding the spatiotemporal dynamics of such spontaneous synchrony is important because it may (1) influence network response to input, (2) shape activity-dependent microcircuit structure, and (3) reveal fundamental network properties, such as an imbalance of excitation (E) and inhibition (I). Here we delineate the spatiotemporal character of spontaneous synchrony in rat cortex slice cultures and a computational model over a range of different E-I conditions including disfacilitated (antagonized AMPA, NMDA receptors), unperturbed, and disinhibited (antagonized GABA(A) receptors). Local field potential was recorded with multielectrode arrays during spontaneous burst activity. Synchrony among neuronal groups was quantified based on phase-locking among recording sites. As network excitability was increased from low to high, we discovered three phenomena at an intermediate excitability level: (1) onset of synchrony, (2) maximized variability of synchrony, and (3) neuronal avalanches. Our computational model predicted that these three features occur when the network operates near a unique balanced E-I condition called "criticality." These results were invariant to changes in the measurement spatial extent, spatial resolution, and frequency bands. Our findings indicate that moderate average synchrony, which is required to avoid pathology, occurs over a limited range of E-I conditions and emerges together with maximally variable synchrony. If variable synchrony is detrimental to cortical function, this is a cost paid for moderate average synchrony. However, if variable synchrony is beneficial, then by operating near criticality the cortex may doubly benefit from moderate mean and maximized variability of synchrony.

  2. Excitatory synaptic transmission and network activity are depressed following mechanical injury in cortical neurons

    PubMed Central

    Goforth, Paulette B.; Ren, Jianhua; Schwartz, Benjamin S.

    2011-01-01

    In vitro and in vivo traumatic brain injury (TBI) alter the function and expression of glutamate receptors, yet the combined effect of these alterations on cortical excitatory synaptic transmission is unclear. We examined the effect of in vitro mechanical injury on excitatory synaptic function in cultured cortical neurons by assaying synaptically driven intracellular free calcium ([Ca2+]i) oscillations in small neuronal networks as well as spontaneous and miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs). We show that injury decreased the incidence and frequency of spontaneous neuronal [Ca2+]i oscillations for at least 2 days post-injury. The amplitude of the oscillations was reduced immediately and 2 days post-injury, although a transient rebound at 4 h post-injury was observed due to increased activity of N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDARs) and calcium-permeable α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole-propionate receptors (CP-AMPARs). Increased CP-AMPAR function was abolished by the inhibition of protein synthesis. In parallel, mEPSC amplitude decreased immediately, 4 h, and 2 days post-injury, with a transient increase in the contribution of synaptic CP-AMPARs observed at 4 h post-injury. Decreased mEPSC amplitude was evident after injury, even if NMDARs and CP-AMPARs were blocked pharmacologically, suggesting the decrease reflected alterations in synaptic Glur2-containing, calcium-impermeable AMPARs. Despite the transient increase in CP-AMPAR activity that we observed, the overriding effect of mechanical injury was long-term depression of excitatory neurotransmission that would be expected to contribute to the cognitive deficits of TBI. PMID:21346214

  3. Excitatory synaptic transmission and network activity are depressed following mechanical injury in cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Goforth, Paulette B; Ren, Jianhua; Schwartz, Benjamin S; Satin, Leslie S

    2011-05-01

    In vitro and in vivo traumatic brain injury (TBI) alter the function and expression of glutamate receptors, yet the combined effect of these alterations on cortical excitatory synaptic transmission is unclear. We examined the effect of in vitro mechanical injury on excitatory synaptic function in cultured cortical neurons by assaying synaptically driven intracellular free calcium ([Ca(2+)](i)) oscillations in small neuronal networks as well as spontaneous and miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs). We show that injury decreased the incidence and frequency of spontaneous neuronal [Ca(2+)](i) oscillations for at least 2 days post-injury. The amplitude of the oscillations was reduced immediately and 2 days post-injury, although a transient rebound at 4 h post-injury was observed due to increased activity of N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDARs) and calcium-permeable α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole-propionate receptors (CP-AMPARs). Increased CP-AMPAR function was abolished by the inhibition of protein synthesis. In parallel, mEPSC amplitude decreased immediately, 4 h, and 2 days post-injury, with a transient increase in the contribution of synaptic CP-AMPARs observed at 4 h post-injury. Decreased mEPSC amplitude was evident after injury, even if NMDARs and CP-AMPARs were blocked pharmacologically, suggesting the decrease reflected alterations in synaptic Glur2-containing, calcium-impermeable AMPARs. Despite the transient increase in CP-AMPAR activity that we observed, the overriding effect of mechanical injury was long-term depression of excitatory neurotransmission that would be expected to contribute to the cognitive deficits of TBI.

  4. The Dynamic Brain: From Spiking Neurons to Neural Masses and Cortical Fields

    PubMed Central

    Deco, Gustavo; Jirsa, Viktor K.; Robinson, Peter A.; Breakspear, Michael; Friston, Karl

    2008-01-01

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

  5. Orbitofrontal Cortical Neurons Encode Expectation-Driven Initiation of Reward-Seeking

    PubMed Central

    Aston-Jones, Gary

    2014-01-01

    Adaptive execution and inhibition of behavior are guided by the activity of neuronal populations across multiple frontal cortical areas. The rodent medial prefrontal cortex has been well studied with respect to these behaviors, influencing behavioral execution/inhibition based on context. Other frontal regions, in particular the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), are critical in directing behavior to obtain rewards, but the relationship between OFC neuronal activity and response execution or inhibition has been poorly characterized. In particular, little is known about OFC with respect to extinction learning, an important example of context-guided response inhibition. Here, we recorded the activity of OFC neurons while rats performed a discriminative-stimulus (DS)-driven sucrose-seeking task followed by multiple days of extinction of the DS. OFC neuronal activity was maximally responsive (1) to reward-predicting stimuli (RS) that triggered a lever press (i.e., lever-response initiation) and (2) during reward-well approach in pursuit of sucrose (i.e., well-response initiation). RS presentation that was not followed by a lever press or RS presentation during extinction produced weak activation, as did nonrewarded stimulus (NS) presentation regardless of response (press or withhold) or session (DS-sucrose or extinction). Activity related to nonrewarded well entry was minor, and activity was significantly inhibited during reward consumption. Finally, OFC neuronal activity switched selectivity to track rewarded behaviors when the RS/NS contingencies were reversed. Thus, rather than signaling variables related to extinction or response inhibition, activity in OFC was strongest at the initiation of multiple components of reward-seeking behavior, most prominently when valid reward-predicting cues drove these behaviors. PMID:25080585

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

    PubMed Central

    Timofeev, I; Contreras, D; Steriade, M

    1996-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-03-15

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

  8. Orbitofrontal cortical neurons encode expectation-driven initiation of reward-seeking.

    PubMed

    Moorman, David E; Aston-Jones, Gary

    2014-07-30

    Adaptive execution and inhibition of behavior are guided by the activity of neuronal populations across multiple frontal cortical areas. The rodent medial prefrontal cortex has been well studied with respect to these behaviors, influencing behavioral execution/inhibition based on context. Other frontal regions, in particular the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), are critical in directing behavior to obtain rewards, but the relationship between OFC neuronal activity and response execution or inhibition has been poorly characterized. In particular, little is known about OFC with respect to extinction learning, an important example of context-guided response inhibition. Here, we recorded the activity of OFC neurons while rats performed a discriminative-stimulus (DS)-driven sucrose-seeking task followed by multiple days of extinction of the DS. OFC neuronal activity was maximally responsive (1) to reward-predicting stimuli (RS) that triggered a lever press (i.e., lever-response initiation) and (2) during reward-well approach in pursuit of sucrose (i.e., well-response initiation). RS presentation that was not followed by a lever press or RS presentation during extinction produced weak activation, as did nonrewarded stimulus (NS) presentation regardless of response (press or withhold) or session (DS-sucrose or extinction). Activity related to nonrewarded well entry was minor, and activity was significantly inhibited during reward consumption. Finally, OFC neuronal activity switched selectivity to track rewarded behaviors when the RS/NS contingencies were reversed. Thus, rather than signaling variables related to extinction or response inhibition, activity in OFC was strongest at the initiation of multiple components of reward-seeking behavior, most prominently when valid reward-predicting cues drove these behaviors.

  9. A role for cortical nNOS/NK1 neurons in coupling homeostatic sleep drive to EEG slow wave activity.

    PubMed

    Morairty, Stephen R; Dittrich, Lars; Pasumarthi, Ravi K; Valladao, Daniel; Heiss, Jaime E; Gerashchenko, Dmitry; Kilduff, Thomas S

    2013-12-10

    Although the neural circuitry underlying homeostatic sleep regulation is little understood, cortical neurons immunoreactive for neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) and the neurokinin-1 receptor (NK1) have been proposed to be involved in this physiological process. By systematically manipulating the durations of sleep deprivation and subsequent recovery sleep, we show that activation of cortical nNOS/NK1 neurons is directly related to non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep time, NREM bout duration, and EEG δ power during NREM sleep, an index of preexisting homeostatic sleep drive. Conversely, nNOS knockout mice show reduced NREM sleep time, shorter NREM bouts, and decreased power in the low δ range during NREM sleep, despite constitutively elevated sleep drive. Cortical NK1 neurons are still activated in response to sleep deprivation in these mice but, in the absence of nNOS, they are unable to up-regulate NREM δ power appropriately. These findings support the hypothesis that cortical nNOS/NK1 neurons translate homeostatic sleep drive into up-regulation of NREM δ power through an NO-dependent mechanism.

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-10-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    Electrical brain stimulation (EBS) is an emerging therapy for the treatment of neurological disorders, and computational modeling studies of EBS have been used to determine the optimal parameters for highly cost-effective electrotherapy. Recent notable growth in computing capability has enabled researchers to consider an anatomically realistic head model that represents the full head and complex geometry of the brain rather than the previous simplified partial head model (extruded slab) that represents only the precentral gyrus. In this work, subdural cortical stimulation (SuCS) was found to offer a better understanding of the differential activation of cortical neurons in the anatomically realistic full-head model than in the simplified partial-head models. We observed that layer 3 pyramidal neurons had comparable stimulation thresholds in both head models, while layer 5 pyramidal neurons showed a notable discrepancy between the models; in particular, layer 5 pyramidal neurons demonstrated asymmetry in the thresholds and action potential initiation sites in the anatomically realistic full-head model. Overall, the anatomically realistic full-head model may offer a better understanding of layer 5 pyramidal neuronal responses. Accordingly, the effects of using the realistic full-head model in SuCS are compelling in computational modeling studies, even though this modeling requires substantially more effort. PMID:27273817

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  14. Known and unexpected constraints evoke different kinematic, muscle, and motor cortical neuron responses during locomotion.

    PubMed

    Stout, Erik E; Sirota, Mikhail G; Beloozerova, Irina N

    2015-11-01

    During navigation through complex natural environments, people and animals must adapt their movements when the environment changes. The neural mechanisms of such adaptations are poorly understood, especially with respect to constraints that are unexpected and must be adapted to quickly. In this study, we recorded forelimb-related kinematics, muscle activity, and the activity of motor cortical neurons in cats walking along a raised horizontal ladder, a complex locomotion task requiring accurate limb placement. One of the crosspieces was motorized, and displaced before the cat stepped on the ladder or at different points along the cat's progression over the ladder, either towards or away from the cat. We found that, when the crosspiece was displaced before the cat stepped onto the ladder, the kinematic modifications were complex and involved all forelimb joints. When the crosspiece displaced unexpectedly while the cat was on the ladder, the kinematic modifications were minimalistic and primarily involved distal joints. The activity of M. triceps and M. extensor digitorum communis differed based on the direction of displacement. Out of 151 neurons tested, 69% responded to at least one condition; however, neurons were significantly more likely to respond when crosspiece displacement was unexpected. Most often they responded during the swing phase. These results suggest that different neural mechanisms and motor control strategies are used to overcome constraints for locomotor movements depending on whether they are known or emerge unexpectedly.

  15. Continuum limit of discrete neuronal structures: is cortical tissue an "excitable" medium?

    PubMed

    Hemmen, J L van

    2004-12-01

    As a simple model of cortical tissue, we study a locally connected network of spiking neurons in the continuum limit of space and time. This is to be contrasted with the usual numerical simulations that discretize both of them. Refractoriness, noise, axonal delays, and the time course of excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic potentials have been taken into account explicitly. We pose, and answer, the question of whether the continuum limit presents a full description of scenarios found numerically (the answer is no, not quite). In other words, can the numerics be reduced to a continuum description of a well-known type? As a corollary, we derive some classical results such as those of Wilson and Cowan (1973), thus indicating under what conditions they are valid. Furthermore, we show that spatially discrete objects may be fragile due to noise arising from the stochasticity of the individual neurons, whereas they are not once the continuum limit has been taken. This, then, resolves the above question. Finally, we indicate how one can directly incorporate orientation preference of the neurons.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Isomura, Takuya; Kotani, Kiyoshi; Jimbo, Yasuhiko

    2015-01-01

    Blind source separation is the computation underlying the cocktail party effect––a partygoer can distinguish a particular talker’s voice from the ambient noise. Early studies indicated that the brain might use blind source separation as a signal processing strategy for sensory perception and numerous mathematical models have been proposed; however, it remains unclear how the neural networks extract particular sources from a complex mixture of inputs. We discovered that neurons in cultures of dissociated rat cortical cells could learn to represent particular sources while filtering out other signals. Specifically, the distinct classes of neurons in the culture learned to respond to the distinct sources after repeating training stimulation. Moreover, the neural network structures changed to reduce free energy, as predicted by the free-energy principle, a candidate unified theory of learning and memory, and by Jaynes’ principle of maximum entropy. This implicit learning can only be explained by some form of Hebbian plasticity. These results are the first in vitro (as opposed to in silico) demonstration of neural networks performing blind source separation, and the first formal demonstration of neuronal self-organization under the free energy principle. PMID:26690814

  18. Reaction-diffusion waves in neuronal tissue and the window of cortical excitability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahlem, M. A.; Müller, S. C.

    2004-07-01

    Spreading depression (SD) is a dynamic wave phenomenon occurring in all gray matter regions of the central nervous systems (CNS). It is characterized by a sudden breakdown of neuronal activity and accompanied by a massive influx and efflux of ions across the membrane of neurons. The retina is a constituent of the CNS in which one can easily observe the dynamic behavior of the SD wave fronts, because SD changes the optical properties of the tissue. There is ample evidence that SD belongs to the self-organization processes due to the coupling of reaction with diffusion in excitable medium. It is assumed that the occurrence of SD is associated with some neurological symptoms of migraine with aura. A frequently reported aura symptom is a traveling visual blind region (scotoma) with a preceding figure of scintillating line segments. The characteristic form and development of the scotoma suggests that the underlying phenomenon is a wave propagating through the primary visual cortex, most likely the cortical spreading depression. In this article we discuss similarities between SD waves and the migraine aura on the basis of properties of reaction-diffusion waves known from other excitable media. In particular, the propagation velocities, the shape and the dynamics of the waves are compared with each other. We find that the assumption of the neuronal tissue to be in a state of only weak excitability explains some properties of the migraine aura, such as the confined appearance and its propagation with a stable velocity.

  19. Local signals from beyond the receptive fields of striate cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Müller, James R; Metha, Andrew B; Krauskopf, John; Lennie, Peter

    2003-08-01

    We examined in anesthetized macaque how the responses of a striate cortical neuron to patterns inside the receptive field were altered by surrounding patterns outside it. The changes in a neuron's response brought about by a surround are immediate and transient: they arise with the same latency as the response to a stimulus within the receptive field (this argues for a source locally in striate cortex) and become less effective as soon as 27 ms later. Surround signals appeared to exert their influence through divisive interaction (normalization) with those arising in the receptive field. Surrounding patterns presented at orientations slightly oblique to the preferred orientation consistently deformed orientation tuning curves of complex (but not simple) cells, repelling the preferred orientation but without decreasing the discriminability of the preferred grating and ones at slightly oblique orientations. By reducing responsivity and changing the tuning of complex cells locally in stimulus space, surrounding patterns reduce the correlations among responses of neurons to a particular stimulus, thus reducing the redundancy of image representation.

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

    PubMed

    Aizenberg, Mark; Mwilambwe-Tshilobo, Laetitia; Briguglio, John J; Natan, Ryan G; Geffen, Maria N

    2015-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-02-24

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-01

    A specialized culture medium termed ciliary neurotrophic factor-treated astrocyte-conditioned medium (CNTF-ACM) allows investigators to assess the peripheral effects of CNTF-induced activated astrocytes upon cultured neurons. CNTF-ACM has been shown to upregulate neuronal L-type calcium channel current activity, which has been previously linked to changes in mitochondrial respiration and oxidative stress. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate CNTF-ACM's effects upon mitochondrial respiration and oxidative stress in rat cortical neurons. Cortical neurons, CNTF-ACM, and untreated control astrocyte-conditioned medium (UC-ACM) were prepared from neonatal Sprague-Dawley rat cortical tissue. Neurons were cultured in either CNTF-ACM or UC-ACM for a 48-h period. Changes in the following parameters before and after treatment with the L-type calcium channel blocker isradipine were assessed: (i) intracellular calcium levels, (ii) mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm), (iii) oxygen consumption rate (OCR) and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) formation, (iv) intracellular nitric oxide (NO) levels, (v) mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, and (vi) susceptibility to the mitochondrial complex I toxin rotenone. CNTF-ACM neurons displayed the following significant changes relative to UC-ACM neurons: (i) increased intracellular calcium levels (p < 0.05), (ii) elevation in ΔΨm (p < 0.05), (iii) increased OCR and ATP formation (p < 0.05), (iv) increased intracellular NO levels (p < 0.05), (v) increased mitochondrial ROS production (p < 0.05), and (vi) increased susceptibility to rotenone (p < 0.05). Treatment with isradipine was able to partially rescue these negative effects of CNTF-ACM (p < 0.05). CNTF-ACM promotes mitochondrial respiration and oxidative stress in cortical neurons through elevating L-type calcium channel activity.

  3. Transition from Initial Hypoactivity to Hyperactivity in Cortical Layer V Pyramidal Neurons after Traumatic Brain Injury In Vivo.

    PubMed

    Ping, Xingjie; Jin, Xiaoming

    2016-02-15

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) often results in structural damage and a loss of neurons that is commonly accompanied by early changes in neuronal electrical activity. Loss of neuronal activity has been hypothesized to contribute to post-traumatic epileptogenesis through the regulation of homeostatic plasticity. The existence of activity loss in cortical neurons after TBI and its subsequent transition into hyperactivity over time is not well characterized, however, particularly in models of TBI in vivo. In the current study, changes in neuronal activity in the primary motor cortex after moderate controlled cortical impact (CCI) in mice were studied using a single-unit recording technique in vivo. Recordings were made at different time points after CCI from cortical layer V pyramidal neurons that were within 1-2 mm from the anterior edge of the injured foci. Within 1-4 h after CCI, the frequency of spontaneous single-unit activity depressed significantly, with the mean firing frequency decreasing from 2.59 ± 0.18 Hz in the sham group to 1.05 ± 0.20 Hz of the injured group. The firing frequencies recovered to the normal level at 1 day and 7 days post-CCI, but became significantly higher at 3 days and 14 days post-CCI. The results suggest that TBI caused initial loss of activity in neurons of the perilesional cortical region, which was followed by compensatory recovery and enhancement of activity. These time-dependent changes in neuronal activity may contribute to the development of hyperexcitability through homeostatic activity regulation.

  4. Differential Tiam1/Rac1 activation in hippocampal and cortical neurons mediates differential spine shrinkage in response to oxygen/glucose deprivation

    PubMed Central

    Blanco-Suárez, Elena; Fiuza, Maria; Liu, Xun; Chakkarapani, Elavazhagan; Hanley, Jonathan G

    2014-01-01

    Distinct neuronal populations show differential sensitivity to global ischemia, with hippocampal CA1 neurons showing greater vulnerability compared to cortical neurons. The mechanisms that underlie differential vulnerability are unclear, and we hypothesize that intrinsic differences in neuronal cell biology are involved. Dendritic spine morphology changes in response to ischemic insults in vivo, but cell type-specific differences and the molecular mechanisms leading to such morphologic changes are unexplored. To directly compare changes in spine size in response to oxygen/glucose deprivation (OGD) in cortical and hippocampal neurons, we used separate and equivalent cultures of each cell type. We show that cortical neurons exhibit significantly greater spine shrinkage compared to hippocampal neurons. Rac1 is a Rho-family GTPase that regulates the actin cytoskeleton and is involved in spine dynamics. We show that Rac1 and the Rac guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) Tiam1 are differentially activated by OGD in hippocampal and cortical neurons. Hippocampal neurons express more Tiam1 than cortical neurons, and reducing Tiam1 expression in hippocampal neurons by shRNA enhances OGD-induced spine shrinkage. Tiam1 knockdown also reduces hippocampal neuronal vulnerability to OGD. This work defines fundamental differences in signalling pathways that regulate spine morphology in distinct neuronal populations that may have a role in the differential vulnerability to ischemia. PMID:25248834

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-15

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

  8. Changes in cortical and striatal neurons predict behavioral and electrophysiological abnormalities in a transgenic murine model of Huntington's disease.

    PubMed

    Laforet, G A; Sapp, E; Chase, K; McIntyre, C; Boyce, F M; Campbell, M; Cadigan, B A; Warzecki, L; Tagle, D A; Reddy, P H; Cepeda, C; Calvert, C R; Jokel, E S; Klapstein, G J; Ariano, M A; Levine, M S; DiFiglia, M; Aronin, N

    2001-12-01

    Neurons in Huntington's disease exhibit selective morphological and subcellular alterations in the striatum and cortex. The link between these neuronal changes and behavioral abnormalities is unclear. We investigated relationships between essential neuronal changes that predict motor impairment and possible involvement of the corticostriatal pathway in developing behavioral phenotypes. We therefore generated heterozygote mice expressing the N-terminal one-third of huntingtin with normal (CT18) or expanded (HD46, HD100) glutamine repeats. The HD mice exhibited motor deficits between 3 and 10 months. The age of onset depended on an expanded polyglutamine length; phenotype severity correlated with increasing age. Neuronal changes in the striatum (nuclear inclusions) preceded the onset of phenotype, whereas cortical changes, especially the accumulation of huntingtin in the nucleus and cytoplasm and the appearance of dysmorphic dendrites, predicted the onset and severity of behavioral deficits. Striatal neurons in the HD mice displayed altered responses to cortical stimulation and to activation by the excitotoxic agent NMDA. Application of NMDA increased intracellular Ca(2+) levels in HD100 neurons compared with wild-type neurons. Results suggest that motor deficits in Huntington's disease arise from cumulative morphological and physiological changes in neurons that impair corticostriatal circuitry.

  9. [The features of postsynaptic currents in primary culture of rat cortical neurons].

    PubMed

    Sibarov, D A; Antonov, S M

    2013-06-01

    The generation features of postsynaptic currents were studied in primary culture of cortical neurons at 7-20 days in vitro (DIV). The use of specific blockers of postsynaptic ion channels after 10 DIV revealed all types of electrical activity found in adult cortex including miniature inhibitory (mIPSCs), excitatory (mEPSCs) and spontaneous giant excitatory currents and spikes. The frequency of mEPSCs increased exponentially from 7 to 20 DIV doubling every 2.2 days in parallel with changes in action potentials generation. The mEPSCs generated by NMDA and AMPA or by only AMPA receptor activation were found. The inhibition of NMDA receptors by magnesium ions or AP5 were shown to modulate the frequency and amplitude of mEPSCs, which differ primary culture from brain slices possibly because of the lack of glial control of synaptic transmission.

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

    PubMed

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

    2006-03-15

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

  11. Inferring learning rules from distribution of firing rates in cortical neurons

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Sukbin; McKee, Jillian L.; Woloszyn, Luke; Amit, Yali; Freedman, David J.; Sheinberg, David L.; Brunel, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    Information about external stimuli is thought to be stored in cortical circuits through experience-dependent modifications of synaptic connectivity. These modifications of network connectivity should lead to changes in neuronal activity, as a particular stimulus is repeatedly encountered. Here, we ask what plasticity rules are consistent with the differences in the statistics of the visual response to novel and familiar stimuli in inferior temporal cortex, an area underlying visual object recognition. We introduce a method that allows inferring the dependence of the ‘learning rule’ on post-synaptic firing rate, and show that the inferred learning rule exhibits depression for low post-synaptic rates and potentiation for high rates. The threshold separating depression from potentiation is strongly correlated with both mean and standard deviation of the firing rate distribution. Finally, we show that network models implementing a rule extracted from data show stable learning dynamics, and lead to sparser representations of stimuli. PMID:26523643

  12. TSHZ3 deletion causes an autism syndrome and defects in cortical projection neurons

    PubMed Central

    Andrieux, Joris; Roubertoux, Pierre L.; Metwaly, Mehdi; Jacq, Bernard; Fatmi, Ahmed; Had-Aissouni, Laurence; Kwan, Kenneth Y.; Salin, Pascal; Carlier, Michèle; Liedén, Agne; Rudd, Eva; Shinawi, Marwan; Vincent-Delorme, Catherine; Cuisset, Jean-Marie; Lemaitre, Marie-Pierre; Abderrehamane, Fatimetou; Duban, Bénédicte; Lemaitre, Jean-François; Woolf, Adrian S.; Bockenhauer, Detlef; Severac, Dany; Dubois, Emeric; Zhu, Ying; Sestan, Nenad; Garratt, Alistair N.; Kerkerian-Le Goff, Lydia; Fasano, Laurent

    2016-01-01

    TSHZ3, which encodes a zinc-finger transcription factor, was recently positioned as a hub gene in a module of genes with the highest expression in the developing human neocortex, but its functions remained unknown. Here, we identify TSHZ3 as the critical region for a syndrome associated with heterozygous deletions at 19q12q13.11, which includes autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In Tshz3 null mice, differentially expressed genes include layer-specific markers of cerebral cortical projection neurons (CPNs) and their human orthologues are strongly associated with ASD. Furthermore, mice heterozygous for Tshz3 deletion show functional changes at synapses established by CPNs and exhibit core ASD-like behavioral abnormalities. These findings reveal essential roles for Tshz3 in CPN development and function, whose alterations can account for ASD in the newly-defined TSHZ3 deletion syndrome. PMID:27668656

  13. High fidelity optogenetic control of individual prefrontal cortical pyramidal neurons in vivo.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Shinya; Baratta, Michael V; Pomrenze, Matthew B; Dolzani, Samuel D; Cooper, Donald C

    2012-01-01

    Precise spatial and temporal manipulation of neural activity in specific genetically defined cell populations is now possible with the advent of optogenetics. The emerging field of optogenetics consists of a set of naturally-occurring and engineered light-sensitive membrane proteins that are able to activate (e.g. channelrhodopsin-2, ChR2) or silence (e.g. halorhodopsin, NpHR) neural activity. Here we demonstrate the technique and the feasibility of using novel adeno-associated viral (AAV) tools to activate (AAV-CaMKllα-ChR2-eYFP) or silence (AAV-CaMKllα-eNpHR3.0-eYFP) neural activity of rat prefrontal cortical prelimbic (PL) pyramidal neurons  in vivo.  In vivo single unit extracellular recording of ChR2-transduced pyramidal neurons showed that delivery of brief (10 ms) blue (473 nm) light-pulse trains up to 20 Hz via a custom fiber optic-coupled recording electrode (optrode) induced spiking with high fidelity at 20 Hz for the duration of recording (up to two hours in some cases). To silence spontaneously active neurons, we transduced them with the NpHR construct and administered continuous green (532 nm) light to completely inhibit action potential activity for up to 10 seconds with 100% fidelity in most cases. These versatile photosensitive tools, combined with optrode recording methods, provide experimental control over activity of genetically defined neurons and can be used to investigate the functional relationship between neural activity and complex cognitive behavior.

  14. High fidelity optogenetic control of individual prefrontal cortical pyramidal neurons in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Cooper, Donald C

    2012-01-01

    Precise spatial and temporal manipulation of neural activity in specific genetically defined cell populations is now possible with the advent of optogenetics. The emerging field of optogenetics consists of a set of naturally-occurring and engineered light-sensitive membrane proteins that are able to activate (e.g. channelrhodopsin-2, ChR2) or silence (e.g. halorhodopsin, NpHR) neural activity. Here we demonstrate the technique and the feasibility of using novel adeno-associated viral (AAV) tools to activate (AAV-CaMKllα-ChR2-eYFP) or silence (AAV-CaMKllα-eNpHR3.0-eYFP) neural activity of rat prefrontal cortical prelimbic (PL) pyramidal neurons  in vivo.  In vivo single unit extracellular recording of ChR2-transduced pyramidal neurons showed that delivery of brief (10 ms) blue (473 nm) light-pulse trains up to 20 Hz via a custom fiber optic-coupled recording electrode (optrode) induced spiking with high fidelity at 20 Hz for the duration of recording (up to two hours in some cases). To silence spontaneously active neurons, we transduced them with the NpHR construct and administered continuous green (532 nm) light to completely inhibit action potential activity for up to 10 seconds with 100% fidelity in most cases. These versatile photosensitive tools, combined with optrode recording methods, provide experimental control over activity of genetically defined neurons and can be used to investigate the functional relationship between neural activity and complex cognitive behavior. PMID:24555016

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2006-01-01

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

  17. Cerebellar cortical neuron responses evoked from the spinal border cell tract.

    PubMed

    Geborek, Pontus; Spanne, Anton; Bengtsson, Fredrik; Jörntell, Henrik

    2013-01-01

    Spinocerebellar systems are likely to be crucial for cerebellar hallmark functions such as coordination. However, in terms of cerebellar functional analyses, these are perhaps among the least explored systems. The aim of the present study is to achieve activation of a single component of the spinocerebellar systems and to explore to what extent it can influence the spike output of granule cells, Golgi cells, molecular layer (ML) interneurons (stellate and basket cells) and Purkinje cells (PCs). For this purpose, we took advantage of a unique arrangement discovered in neuroanatomical studies, in which the spinal border cell (SBC) component of the ventral spinocerebellar system was found to be the only spinocerebellar tract which ascends in the contralateral lateral funiculus (coLF) and have terminations in sublobulus C1 of the paramedian lobule in the posterior cerebellum. Using electrical stimulation of this tract, we find a subset of the cerebellar cortical neurons in this region to be moderately or powerfully activated. For example, some of our granule cells displayed high intensity responses whereas the majority of the granule cells displayed no response at all. The finding that more than half of the PCs were activated by stimulation of the SBC tract indicated that this system is capable of directly influencing cerebellar cortical output. The implications of these findings for the view of the integrative functions of the cerebellar cortex are discussed.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    In this study, we investigated how microtubule motors organize microtubules in Drosophila neurons. We showed that, during the initial stages of axon outgrowth, microtubules display mixed polarity and minus-end-out microtubules push the tip of the axon, consistent with kinesin-1 driving outgrowth by sliding antiparallel microtubules. At later stages, the microtubule orientation in the axon switches from mixed to uniform polarity with plus-end-out. Dynein knockdown prevents this rearrangement and results in microtubules of mixed orientation in axons and accumulation of microtubule minus-ends at axon tips. Microtubule reorganization requires recruitment of dynein to the actin cortex, as actin depolymerization phenocopies dynein depletion, and direct recruitment of dynein to the membrane bypasses the actin requirement. Our results show that cortical dynein slides ‘minus-end-out’ microtubules from the axon, generating uniform microtubule arrays. We speculate that differences in microtubule orientation between axons and dendrites could be dictated by differential activity of cortical dynein. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.10140.001 PMID:26615019

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

    EPA Science Inventory

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

  20. Differentiation from human pluripotent stem cells of cortical neurons of the superficial layers amenable to psychiatric disease modeling and high-throughput drug screening

    PubMed Central

    Boissart, C; Poulet, A; Georges, P; Darville, H; Julita, E; Delorme, R; Bourgeron, T; Peschanski, M; Benchoua, A

    2013-01-01

    Cortical neurons of the superficial layers (II-IV) represent a pivotal neuronal population involved in the higher cognitive functions of the human and are particularly affected by psychiatric diseases with developmental manifestations such as schizophrenia and autism. Differentiation protocols of human pluripotent stem cells (PSC) into cortical neurons have been achieved, opening the way to in vitro modeling of neuropsychiatric diseases. However, these protocols commonly result in the asynchronous production of neurons typical for the different layers of the cortex within an extended period of culture, thus precluding the analysis of specific subtypes of neurons in a standardized manner. Addressing this issue, we have successfully captured a stable population of self-renewing late cortical progenitors (LCPs) that synchronously and massively differentiate into glutamatergic cortical neurons of the upper layers. The short time course of differentiation into neurons of these progenitors has made them amenable to high-throughput assays. This has allowed us to analyze the capability of LCPs at differentiating into post mitotic neurons as well as extending and branching neurites in response to a collection of selected bioactive molecules. LCPs and cortical neurons of the upper layers were successfully produced from patient-derived-induced PSC, indicating that this system enables functional studies of individual-specific cortical neurons ex vivo for disease modeling and therapeutic purposes. PMID:23962924

  1. Computer-assisted 3-D reconstructions of Golgi-impregnated neurons in the cortical regions of the inferior colliculus of rat.

    PubMed

    Malmierca, Manuel S; Blackstad, Theodor W; Osen, Kirsten K

    2011-04-01

    The inferior colliculus (IC) is the main auditory nucleus in the midbrain. This auditory center is made of a central nucleus (CNIC) characterized by a distinct laminar organization that is surrounded by cortical regions. The neuronal types in the CNIC are well established but thus far, the neuronal composition and functional roles of the cortical regions are not fully appreciated. As dendritic architecture is critical for the synaptic integrative properties of neurons, a detailed analysis of the dendritic architecture of the neurons in the collicular cortical regions should shed light on our understanding of their roles in collicular function. In the present study, we have used the del Rio-Hortega Golgi procedure to impregnate individual neurons within the IC. Rat brains were embedded in resin and sectioned serially to allow quantitative 3-D analyses of single neurons or groups of neurons. Our results demonstrate that the cortical regions of the IC are made up of unique sets of neuronal types and that there is an interdigitation of dendrites at the cortical borders. This latter feature may have led to difficulty in delineating a sharp border between the CNIC and cortical regions in previous studies. The quantitative analysis further demonstrates that there are significant differences in many of the dendritic parameters tested when compared to the neurons from the CNIC. Moreover, we observed that the neuronal populations of the cortical regions vary from the laminar pattern of the CNIC and from each other. Since the main organizing principle of the CNIC is the laminar organization of 'flat' neurons, evidence that cortical IC regions lack flat neurons supports the subdivision schema presented here.

  2. Load Rate and Temperature Dependent Mechanical Properties of the Cortical Neuron and Its Pericellular Layer Measured by Atomic Force Microscopy.

    PubMed

    Simon, Marc; Dokukin, Maxim; Kalaparthi, Vivekanand; Spedden, Elise; Sokolov, Igor; Staii, Cristian

    2016-02-02

    When studying the mechanical properties of cells by an indentation technique, it is important to take into account the nontrivial pericellular interface (or pericellular "brush") which includes a pericellular coating and corrugation of the pericellular membrane (microvilli and microridges). Here we use atomic force microscopy (AFM) to study the mechanics of cortical neurons taking into account the presence of the above pericellular brush surrounding cell soma. We perform a systematic study of the mechanical properties of both the brush layer and the underlying neuron soma and demonstrate that the brush layer is likely responsible for the low elastic modulus (<1 kPa) typically reported for cortical neurons. When the contribution of the pericellular brush is excluded, the average elastic modulus of the cortical neuron soma is found to be 3-4 times larger than previously reported values measured under similar physiological conditions. We also demonstrate that the underlying soma behaves as a nonviscous elastic material over the indentation rates studied (1-10 μm/s). As a result, it seems that the brush layer is responsible for the previously reported viscoelastic response measured for the neuronal cell body as a whole, within these indentation rates. Due to of the similarities between the macroscopic brain mechanics and the effective modulus of the pericellular brush, we speculate that the pericellular brush layer might play an important role in defining the macroscopic mechanical properties of the brain.

  3. Ciliary neurotrophic factor-treated astrocyte-conditioned medium increases the intracellular free calcium concentration in rat cortical neurons

    PubMed Central

    SUN, MEIQUN; LIU, HONGLI; MIN, SHENGPING; WANG, HONGTAO; WANG, XIAOJING

    2016-01-01

    Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) is involved in the activation of astrocytes. A previous study showed that CNTF-treated astrocyte-conditioned medium (CNTF-ACM) contributed to the increase of the calcium current and the elevation of corresponding ion channels in cortical neurons. On this basis, it is reasonable to assume that CNTF-ACM may increase the intracellular free calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) in neurons. In the present study, the effects of CNTF-ACM on [Ca2+]i in rat cortical neurons were determined, and on this basis, the aim was to investigate the potential active ingredients in ACM that are responsible for this biological process. As expected, the data indicated that CNTF-ACM resulted in a clear elevation of [Ca2+]i in neurons. Additionally, the fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) contained in the CNTF-ACM was found to participate in the upregulation of [Ca2+]i. Taken together, CNTF induces the production of active factors (at least including FGF-2) released from astrocytes, which finally potentiate the increase of [Ca2+]i in cortical neurons. PMID:27073624

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

    PubMed

    Lin, Longzai; Chen, Hongbin; Zhang, Yixian; Lin, Wei; Liu, Yong; Li, Tin; Zeng, Yongping; Chen, Jianhao; Du, Houwei; Chen, Ronghua; Tan, Yi; Liu, Nan

    2015-01-01

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

  5. Markers of Pluripotency in Human Amniotic Epithelial Cells and Their Differentiation to Progenitor of Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    García-Castro, Irma Lydia; García-López, Guadalupe; Ávila-González, Daniela; Flores-Herrera, Héctor; Molina-Hernández, Anayansi; Portillo, Wendy; Ramón-Gallegos, Eva; Díaz, Néstor Fabián

    2015-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC) have promise for regenerative medicine due to their auto-renovation and differentiation capacities. Nevertheless, there are several ethical and methodological issues about these cells that have not been resolved. Human amniotic epithelial cells (hAEC) have been proposed as source of pluripotent stem cells. Several groups have studied hAEC but have reported inconsistencies about their pluripotency properties. The aim of the present study was the in vitro characterization of hAEC collected from a Mexican population in order to identify transcription factors involved in the pluripotency circuitry and to determine their epigenetic state. Finally, we evaluated if these cells differentiate to cortical progenitors. We analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively the expression of the transcription factors of pluripotency (OCT4, SOX2, NANOG, KLF4 and REX1) by RT-PCR and RT-qPCR in hAEC. Also, we determined the presence of OCT4, SOX2, NANOG, SSEA3, SSEA4, TRA-1-60, E-cadherin, KLF4, TFE3 as well as the proliferation and epigenetic state by immunocytochemistry of the cells. Finally, hAEC were differentiated towards cortical progenitors using a protocol of two stages. Here we show that hAEC, obtained from a Mexican population and cultured in vitro (P0-P3), maintained the expression of several markers strongly involved in pluripotency maintenance (OCT4, SOX2, NANOG, TFE3, KLF4, SSEA3, SSEA4, TRA-1-60 and E-cadherin). Finally, when hAEC were treated with growth factors and small molecules, they expressed markers characteristic of cortical progenitors (TBR2, OTX2, NeuN and β-III-tubulin). Our results demonstrated that hAEC express naïve pluripotent markers (KLF4, REX1 and TFE3) as well as the cortical neuron phenotype after differentiation. This highlights the need for further investigation of hAEC as a possible source of hPSC. PMID:26720151

  6. Identification of prothymosin-α1, the necrosis–apoptosis switch molecule in cortical neuronal cultures

    PubMed Central

    Ueda, Hiroshi; Fujita, Ryousuke; Yoshida, Akira; Matsunaga, Hayato; Ueda, Mutsumi

    2007-01-01

    We initially identified a nuclear protein, prothymosin-α1 (ProTα), as a key protein inhibiting necrosis by subjecting conditioned media from serum-free cultures of cortical neurons to a few chromatography steps. ProTα inhibited necrosis of cultured neurons by preventing rapid loss of cellular adenosine triphosphate levels by reversing the decreased membrane localization of glucose transporters but caused apoptosis through up-regulation of proapoptotic Bcl2-family proteins. The apoptosis caused by ProTα was further inhibited by growth factors, including brain-derived neurotrophic factor. The ProTα-induced cell death mode switch from necrosis to apoptosis was also reproduced in experimental ischemia-reperfusion culture experiments, although the apoptosis level was markedly reduced, possibly because of the presence of growth factors in the reperfused serum. Knock down of PKCβII expression prevented this cell death mode switch. Collectively, these results suggest that ProTα is an extracellular signal protein that acts as a cell death mode switch and could be a promising candidate for preventing brain strokes with the help of known apoptosis inhibitors. PMID:17353361

  7. Tissue-type plasminogen activator triggers the synaptic vesicle cycle in cerebral cortical neurons

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Fang; Torre, Enrique; Cuellar-Giraldo, David; Cheng, Lihong; Yi, Hong; Bichler, Edyta K; García, Paul S; Yepes, Manuel

    2015-01-01

    The active zone (AZ) is a thickening of the presynaptic membrane where exocytosis takes place. Chemical synapses contain neurotransmitter-loaded synaptic vesicles (SVs) that at rest are tethered away from the synaptic release site, but after the presynaptic inflow of Ca+2 elicited by an action potential translocate to the AZ to release their neurotransmitter load. We report that tissue-type plasminogen activator (tPA) is stored outside the AZ of cerebral cortical neurons, either intermixed with small clear-core vesicles or in direct contact with the presynaptic membrane. We found that cerebral ischemia-induced release of neuronal tPA, or treatment with recombinant tPA, recruits the cytoskeletal protein βII-spectrin to the AZ and promotes the binding of SVs to βII-spectrin, enlarging the population of SVs in proximity to the synaptic release site. This effect does not require the generation of plasmin and is followed by the recruitment of voltage gated calcium channels (VGCC) to the presynaptic terminal that leads to Ca+2-dependent synapsin I phosphorylation, freeing SVs to translocate to the AZ to deliver their neurotransmitter load. Our studies indicate that tPA activates the SV cycle and induces the structural and functional changes in the synapse that are required for successful neurotransmission. PMID:26126868

  8. Matrix-dependent local retention of secretory vesicle cargo in cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    de Wit, Joris; Toonen, Ruud F; Verhage, Matthijs

    2009-01-07

    Neurons secrete many diffusible signals from synaptic and other secretory vesicles. We characterized secretion of guidance cues, neuropeptides, neurotrophins, and proteases from single secretory vesicles using pHluorin-tagged cargo in cortical neurons. Stimulation triggered transient and persistent fusion events. Transient events represented full release followed by cargo diffusion or incomplete release followed by vesicle retrieval, as previously observed in neuroendocrine cells. Unexpectedly, we also observed that certain cargo, such as Semaphorin 3A (Sema3A), was delivered at the cell surface as stable deposits. Stable deposits and transient events were observed for single cargo and both were SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) and calcium dependent. The ratio between stable and transient events did not depend on cargo size, subcellular localization (synaptic vs extrasynaptic secretion), or the presence of the extracellular matrix. Instead, the ratio is cargo specific and depends on an interaction with the vesicle matrix through a basic domain in the cargo protein. Inhibition of this interaction through deletion of the basic domain in Sema3A abolished stable deposits and rendered all events transient. Strikingly, cargo favoring transient release was stably deposited after corelease with cargo favoring stable deposit. These data argue against cargo diffusion after exocytosis as a general principle. Instead, the vesicle matrix retains secreted signals, probably for focal signaling at the cell surface.

  9. Reelin Induces Erk1/2 Signaling in Cortical Neurons Through a Non-canonical Pathway*

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Gum Hwa; Chhangawala, Zinal; von Daake, Sventja; Savas, Jeffrey N.; Yates, John R.; Comoletti, Davide; D'Arcangelo, Gabriella

    2014-01-01

    Reelin is an extracellular protein that controls many aspects of pre- and postnatal brain development and function. The molecular mechanisms that mediate postnatal activities of Reelin are not well understood. Here, we first set out to express and purify the full length Reelin protein and a biologically active central fragment. Second, we investigated in detail the signal transduction mechanisms elicited by these purified Reelin proteins in cortical neurons. Unexpectedly, we discovered that the full-length Reelin moiety, but not the central fragment, is capable of activating Erk1/2 signaling, leading to increased p90RSK phosphorylation and the induction of immediate-early gene expression. Remarkably, Erk1/2 activation is not mediated by the canonical signal transduction pathway, involving ApoER2/VLDLR and Dab1, that mediates other functions of Reelin in early brain development. The activation of Erk1/2 signaling likely contributes to the modulation of neuronal maturation and synaptic plasticity by Reelin in the postnatal and adult brain. PMID:24876378

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  12. Changes in markers of neuronal and glial plasticity after cortical injury induced by food restriction.

    PubMed

    Loncarević-Vasiljković, Natasa; Pesić, Vesna; Tanić, Nikola; Milanović, Desanka; Popić, Jelena; Kanazir, Selma; Ruzdijić, Sabera

    2009-11-01

    The regenerative capacity of the adult central nervous system is limited. We investigated whether short-term food restriction (FR; 50% of the daily food intake lasting 3 months) modulates processes of brain plasticity after cortical injury. Quantitative changes of growth-associated protein 43 (GAP-43) and synaptophysin (SYP) mRNA levels in the ipsilateral cortex of the adult rat during the recovery period (from 2 to 28 days) after injury were investigated by real-time RT-PCR. Using Western blot and immunohistochemical analyses we examined the levels and localization of proteins involved in neuronal plasticity, SYP and GAP-43, as well as glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), a marker of glial plasticity. A marked rise in GAP-43 and SYP immunoreactivity observed in the FR group on the 7th day after injury pointed to increases in axonal branching and synapses in the cortex surrounding the lesion. The appearance of reactive astrocytes was accompanied by the absence of immunoreactivity for GAP-43 and SYP in ad libitum fed animals. This finding supports the hypothesis that morphological hypertrophy of astrocytes associated with GFAP synthesis is responsible either directly or indirectly for the inhibitory role of activated glia on axonal regeneration. Examination of the effects of FR on serum corticosterone and glucose concentrations and GAP-43, SYP and GFAP expression revealed that FR facilitated recovery of the injured region by attenuating reactive astrogliosis and enhancing the expression of neuronal plasticity markers.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-09-18

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

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

    PubMed

    Katz, Ira K; Lamprecht, Raphael

    2015-02-01

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

  16. LHX2 Interacts with the NuRD Complex and Regulates Cortical Neuron Subtype Determinants Fezf2 and Sox11

    PubMed Central

    Muralidharan, Bhavana; Khatri, Zeba; Maheshwari, Upasana; Gupta, Ritika; Roy, Basabdatta; Pradhan, Saurabh J.; Karmodiya, Krishanpal; Padmanabhan, Hari; Shetty, Ashwin S.; Balaji, Chinthapalli; Kolthur-Seetharam, Ullas; Macklis, Jeffrey D.; Galande, Sanjeev

    2017-01-01

    In the developing cerebral cortex, sequential transcriptional programs take neuroepithelial cells from proliferating progenitors to differentiated neurons with unique molecular identities. The regulatory changes that occur in the chromatin of the progenitors are not well understood. During deep layer neurogenesis, we show that transcription factor LHX2 binds to distal regulatory elements of Fezf2 and Sox11, critical determinants of neuron subtype identity in the mouse neocortex. We demonstrate that LHX2 binds to the nucleosome remodeling and histone deacetylase histone remodeling complex subunits LSD1, HDAC2, and RBBP4, which are proximal regulators of the epigenetic state of chromatin. When LHX2 is absent, active histone marks at the Fezf2 and Sox11 loci are increased. Loss of LHX2 produces an increase, and overexpression of LHX2 causes a decrease, in layer 5 Fezf2 and CTIP2-expressing neurons. Our results provide mechanistic insight into how LHX2 acts as a necessary and sufficient regulator of genes that control cortical neuronal subtype identity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The functional complexity of the cerebral cortex arises from an array of distinct neuronal subtypes with unique connectivity patterns that are produced from common progenitors. This study reveals that transcription factor LHX2 regulates the numbers of specific cortical output neuron subtypes by controlling the genes that are required to produce them. Loss or increase in LHX2 during neurogenesis is sufficient to increase or decrease, respectively, a particular subcerebrally projecting population. Mechanistically, LHX2 interacts with chromatin modifying protein complexes to edit the chromatin landscape of its targets Fezf2 and Sox11, which regulates their expression and consequently the identities of the neurons produced. Thus, LHX2 is a key component of the control network for producing neurons that will participate in cortical circuitry. PMID:28053041

  17. Fluoxetine and citalopram decrease microglial release of glutamate and D-serine to promote cortical neuronal viability following ischemic insult.

    PubMed

    Dhami, K S; Churchward, M A; Baker, G B; Todd, K G

    2013-09-01

    Depression is one of the most common disorders appearing following a stroke, and is also a major factor limiting recovery and rehabilitation in stroke patients. Antidepressants are the most common prescribed treatment for depression and have shown to have anti-inflammatory properties within the central nervous system (CNS). The major source of pro-inflammatory factors within the CNS is from activated microglia, the innate immune cells of the CNS. Antidepressants have been shown to promote midbrain and hippocampal neuronal survival following an ischemic insult and this survival is mediated through the anti-inflammatory effects on microglia, but the effects on cortical neuronal survival after this insult have yet to be investigated. The present study aimed to test and compare antidepressants from three distinct classes (tricyclics, monoamine oxidase inhibitors, and selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitors [SSRIs]) on the release of inflammatory factors and amino acids from activated microglia and whether altering this release could affect cortical neuronal viability after an ischemic insult. Primary microglia were treated with 1 μg/ml LPS and/or 10 μM antidepressants, and the various factors released into medium were assayed. Co-cultures consisting of microglia and primary cortical neurons were used to assess the effects of antidepressant-treated activated microglia on the viability of ischemic injured neurons. Of the antidepressants tested, most decreased the release of the proinflammatory factors nitric oxide, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, and interleukin 1-beta from activated microglia. Fluoxetine and citalopram, the SSRIs, decreased the release of the amino acids glutamate and d-serine from LPS-activated microglia. oxygen-glucose deprived (OGD) cortical neurons cocultured with LPS-activated microglia pre-treated with fluoxetine and citalopram showed greater survival compared to injured neurons co-cultured with untreated activated microglia. Microglial release of

  18. 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.

  19. Repeated administration of a synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonist differentially affects cortical and accumbal neuronal morphology in adolescent and adult rats

    PubMed Central

    Carvalho, A. F.; Reyes, B. A. S.; Ramalhosa, F.; Sousa, N.

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies demonstrate a differential trajectory for cannabinoid receptor expression in cortical and sub-cortical brain areas across postnatal development. In the present study, we sought to investigate whether chronic systemic exposure to a synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonist causes morphological changes in the structure of dendrites and dendritic spines in adolescent and adult pyramidal neurons in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and medium spiny neurons (MSN) in the nucleus accumbens (Acb). Following systemic administration of WIN 55,212-2 in adolescent (PN 37–40) and adult (P55–60) male rats, the neuronal architecture of pyramidal neurons and MSN was assessed using Golgi–Cox staining. While no structural changes were observed in WIN 55,212-2-treated adolescent subjects compared to control, exposure to WIN 55,212-2 significantly increased dendritic length, spine density and the number of dendritic branches in pyramidal neurons in the mPFC of adult subjects when compared to control and adolescent subjects. In the Acb, WIN 55,212-2 exposure significantly decreased dendritic length and number of branches in adult rat subjects while no changes were observed in the adolescent groups. In contrast, spine density was significantly decreased in both the adult and adolescent groups in the Acb. To determine whether regional developmental morphological changes translated into behavioral differences, WIN 55,212-2-induced aversion was evaluated in both groups using a conditioned place preference paradigm. In adult rats, WIN 55,212-2 administration readily induced conditioned place aversion as previously described. In contrast, adolescent rats did not exhibit aversion following WIN 55,212-2 exposure in the behavioral paradigm. The present results show that synthetic cannabinoid administration differentially impacts cortical and sub-cortical neuronal morphology in adult compared to adolescent subjects. Such differences may underlie the disparate development

  20. Dose Response Effects of 810 nm Laser Light on Mouse Primary Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Sulbha K.; Kharkwal, Gitika B.; Sajo, Mari; Huang, Ying-Ying; De Taboada, Luis; McCarthy, Thomas; Hamblin, Michael R.

    2011-01-01

    Background and Objectives In the past four decades numerous studies have reported the efficacy of low level light (laser) therapy (LLLT) as a treatment for diverse diseases and injuries. Recent studies have shown that LLLT can biomodulate processes in the central nervous system and has been extensively studied as a stroke treatment. However there is still a lack of knowledge on the effects of LLLT at the cellular level in neurons. The present study aimed to study the effect of 810 nm laser on several cellular processes in primary cortical neurons cultured from embryonic mouse brains. Study Design/Materials and Methods Neurons were irradiated with fluences of 0.03, 0.3, 3, 10, or 30 J/cm2 of 810-nm laser delivered over varying times at 25 mW/cm2 and intracellular levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), nitric oxide and calcium were measured using fluorescent probes within 5 minutes of the end of irradiation. The changes in mitochondrial function in response to light were studied in terms of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP). Results Light induced a significant increase in calcium, ATP and MMP at lower fluences and a decrease at higher fluences. ROS was significantly induced at low fluences, followed by a decrease and a second larger increase at 30 J/cm2. Nitric oxide levels showed a similar pattern of a double peak but values were less significant compared to ROS. Conclusions The results suggest that LLLT at lower fluences is capable of inducing mediators of cell signaling processes which in turn may be responsible for the beneficial stimulatory effects of the low level laser. At higher fluences beneficial mediators are reduced and high levels of Janus-type mediators such as ROS and NO (beneficial at low concentrations and harmful at high concentrations) may be responsible for the damaging effects of high-fluence light and the overall biphasic dose response. PMID:21956634

  1. Olesoxime protects embryonic cortical neurons from camptothecin intoxication by a mechanism distinct from BDNF

    PubMed Central

    Gouarné, Caroline; Giraudon-Paoli, Marc; Seimandi, Mathieu; Biscarrat, Clotilde; Tardif, Gwenaëlle; Pruss, Rebecca M; Bordet, Thierry

    2013-01-01

    Background and Purpose Olesoxime is a small cholesterol–oxime promoting rat embryonic motor neurons survival in the absence of trophic factors. Because olesoxime can substitute for neurotrophic factors in many situations, and to gain further understanding of its mechanism of action, we wondered if it could prevent neuronal death induced by camptothecin (CPT) and compared its effects with those of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Experimental Approach E17 rat embryonic cortical neurons were treated with olesoxime, BDNF or vehicle and intoxicated with CPT. Caspase-dependent and caspase-independent death pathways along with pro-survival pathways activation were explored. Key Results As previously reported for BDNF, olesoxime dose-dependently delayed CPT-induced cell death. Both compounds acted downstream of p53 activation preventing cytochrome c release and caspases activation. When caspase activation was blocked, both olesoxime and BDNF provided additional neuroprotective effect, potentially through the prevention of apoptosis-inducing factor release from mitochondria. While BDNF activates both the PI3K/Akt and the ERK pathway, olesoxime induced only a late activation of the ERK pathways, which did not seem to play a major role in its neuroprotection against CPT. Rather, our results favour preserved mitochondrial membrane integrity by olesoxime. Conclusions and Implications Albeit different, olesoxime and BDNF mechanisms for neuroprotection converge to preserve mitochondrial function. These findings emphasize the importance of targeting the mitochondria in the process of neurodegeneration. Importantly olesoxime, by mimicking neurotrophin pro-survival activities without impacting PI3K/Akt and ERK signalling, may have greater therapeutic potential in many diseases where neurotrophins were considered as a therapeutic solution. PMID:23278424

  2. Activation of Wnt Signaling in Cortical Neurons Enhances Glucose Utilization through Glycolysis.

    PubMed

    Cisternas, Pedro; Salazar, Paulina; Silva-Álvarez, Carmen; Barros, L Felipe; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C

    2016-12-09

    The Wnt signaling pathway is critical for a number of functions in the central nervous system, including regulation of the synaptic cleft structure and neuroprotection against injury. Deregulation of Wnt signaling has been associated with several brain pathologies, including Alzheimer's disease. In recent years, it has been suggested that the Wnt pathway might act as a central integrator of metabolic signals from peripheral organs to the brain, which would represent a new role for Wnt signaling in cell metabolism. Energy metabolism is critical for normal neuronal function, which mainly depends on glucose utilization. Brain energy metabolism is important in almost all neurological disorders, to which a decrease in the capacity of the brain to utilize glucose has been linked. However, little is known about the relationship between Wnt signaling and neuronal glucose metabolism in the cellular context. In the present study, we found that acute treatment with the Wnt3a ligand induced a large increase in glucose uptake, without changes in the expression or localization of glucose transporter type 3. In addition, we observed that Wnt3a treatment increased the activation of the metabolic sensor Akt. Moreover, we observed an increase in the activity of hexokinase and in the glycolytic rate, and both processes were dependent on activation of the Akt pathway. Furthermore, we did not observe changes in the activity of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase or in the pentose phosphate pathway. The effect of Wnt3a was independent of both the transcription of Wnt target genes and synaptic effects of Wnt3a. Together, our results suggest that Wnt signaling stimulates glucose utilization in cortical neurons through glycolysis to satisfy the high energy demand of these cells.

  3. Neurophysiologic effects of chemical agent hydrolysis products on cortical neurons in vitro.

    PubMed

    Pancrazio, J J; Keefer, E W; Ma, W; Stenger, D A; Gross, G W

    2001-06-01

    The neurophysiologic effects of chemical agent hydrolysis products were examined on cultured cortical neurons using multielectrode array (MEA) recording and the whole-cell patch clamp technique. Measurement of neuronal network extracellular potentials showed that the primary hydrolysis product of soman, pinacolyl methylphosphonic acid (PMPA), inhibited network mean burst and spike rates with an EC50 of approximately 2 mM. In contrast, the degradation product of sarin, isopropyl methylphosphonic acid (IMPA), and the final common hydrolysis product of both soman and sarin, methylphosphonic acid (MPA), failed to affect neuronal network behavior at concentrations reaching 5 mM. Closer examination of the effects of PMPA (2 mM) on discriminated extracellular units revealed that mean spike amplitude was slightly diminished to 95 +/- 1% (mean +/- S.E.M., n = 6, P < 0.01) of control. Whole-cell patch clamp records under current clamp mode also showed a PMPA-induced depression of the firing rate of spontaneous action potentials (APs) to 36 +/- 6% (n = 5, P < 0.001) of control. In addition, a minor depression with exposure to PMPA was observed in spontaneous and evoked AP amplitude to 93 +/- 3% (n = 5, P < 0.05) of control with no change in either the baseline membrane potential or input resistance. Preliminary voltage clamp recordings indicated a reduction in the occurrence of spontaneous inward currents with application of PMPA. These findings suggest that PMPA, unlike MPA or IMPA, may more readily interfere with one or more aspects of excitatory synaptic transmission. Furthermore, the data demonstrate that the combination of extracellular microelectrode array and patch clamp recording techniques facilitates analysis of compounds with neuropharmacologic effects.

  4. Cerebral cortical neurons with activity linked to central neurogenic spontaneous and evoked elevations in cerebral blood flow

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Golanov, E. V.; Reis, D. J.

    1996-01-01

    We recorded neurons in rat cerebral cortex with activity relating to the neurogenic elevations in regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) coupled to stereotyped bursts of EEG activity, burst-cerebrovascular wave complexes, appearing spontaneously or evoked by electrical stimulation of rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVL) or fastigial nucleus (FN). Of 333 spontaneously active neurons only 15 (5%), in layers 5-6, consistently (P < 0.05, chi-square) increased their activity during the earliest potential of the complex, approximately 1.3 s before the rise of rCBF, and during the minutes-long elevation of rCBF elicited by 10 s of stimulation of RVL or FN. The results indicate the presence of a small population of neurons in deep cortical laminae whose activity correlates with neurogenic elevations of rCBF. These neurons may function to transduce afferent neuronal signals into vasodilation.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2006-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Powrozek, Teresa A; Olson, Eric C

    2012-11-01

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

  10. An antagonistic interaction between PlexinB2 and Rnd3 controls RhoA activity and cortical neuron migration

    PubMed Central

    Azzarelli, Roberta; Pacary, Emilie; Garg, Ritu; Garcez, Patricia; van den Berg, Debbie; Riou, Philippe; Ridley, Anne J.; Friedel, Roland H.; Parsons, Maddy; Guillemot, François

    2014-01-01

    A transcriptional programme initiated by the proneural factors Neurog2 and Ascl1 controls successive steps of neurogenesis in the embryonic cerebral cortex. Previous work has shown that proneural factors also confer a migratory behaviour to cortical neurons by inducing the expression of the small GTP-binding proteins such as Rnd2 and Rnd3. However, the directionality of radial migration suggests that migrating neurons also respond to extracellular signal-regulated pathways. Here we show that the Plexin B2 receptor interacts physically and functionally with Rnd3 and stimulates RhoA activity in migrating cortical neurons. Plexin B2 competes with p190RhoGAP for binding to Rnd3, thus blocking the Rnd3-mediated inhibition of RhoA and also recruits RhoGEFs to directly stimulate RhoA activity. Thus, an interaction between the cell-extrinsic Plexin signalling pathway and the cell-intrinsic Ascl1-Rnd3 pathway determines the level of RhoA activity appropriate for cortical neuron migration. PMID:24572910

  11. D2 dopamine receptors modulate neuronal resonance in subthalamic nucleus and cortical high-voltage spindles through HCN channels.

    PubMed

    Yang, Chen; Yan, Zhiqiang; Zhao, Bo; Wang, Julei; Gao, Guodong; Zhu, Junling; Wang, Wenting

    2016-06-01

    The high-voltage spindles (HVSs), one of the characteristic oscillations that include theta frequencies in the basal ganglia (BG)-cortical system, are involved in immobile behavior and show increasing power in Parkinson's disease (PD). Our previous results suggested that the D2 dopamine receptor might be involved in HVSs modulations in a rat model of PD. Membrane resonance is one of the cellular mechanisms of network oscillation; therefore, we investigated how dopamine modulates the theta frequency membrane resonance of neurons in the subthalamic nucleus (STN), a central pacemaker of BG, and whether such changes in STN neurons subsequently alter HVSs in the BG-cortical system. In particular, we tested whether dopamine modulates HVSs through hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels-dependent membrane resonance in STN neurons. We found that an antagonist of D2 receptors, but not of D1 receptors, inhibited membrane resonance and HCN currents of STN neurons through a G-protein activity in acute brain slices. Our further in vivo experiments using local injection of a D2 receptor antagonist or an HCN blocker in STNs of free-moving rats showed an increase in HVSs power and correlation in the BG-cortical system. Local injection of lamotrigine, an HCN agonist, counteracted the effect induced by the D2 antagonist. Taken together, our results revealed a potential cellular mechanism underlying HVSs activity modulation in the BG-cortical system, i.e. tuning HCN activities in STN neurons through dopamine D2 receptors. Our findings might lead to a new direction in PD treatment by providing promising new drug targets for HVSs activity modulation.

  12. Auditory cortical neurons are sensitive to static and continuously changing interaural phase cues.

    PubMed

    Reale, R A; Brugge, J F

    1990-10-01

    1. The interaural-phase-difference (IPD) sensitivity of single neurons in the primary auditory (AI) cortex of the anesthetized cat was studied at stimulus frequencies ranging from 120 to 2,500 Hz. Best frequencies of the 43 AI cells sensitive to IPD ranged from 190 to 2,400 Hz. 2. A static IPD was produced when a pair of low-frequency tone bursts, differing from one another only in starting phase, were presented dichotically. The resulting IPD-sensitivity curves, which plot the number of discharges evoked by the binaural signal as a function of IPD, were deeply modulated circular functions. IPD functions were analyzed for their mean vector length (r) and mean interaural phase (phi). Phase sensitivity was relatively independent of best frequency (BF) but highly dependent on stimulus frequency. Regardless of BF or stimulus frequency within the excitatory response area the majority of cells fired maximally when the ipsilateral tone lagged the contralateral signal and fired least when this interaural-phase relationship was reversed. 3. Sensitivity to continuously changing IPD was studied by delivering to the two ears 3-s tones that differed slightly in frequency, resulting in a binaural beat. Approximately 26% of the cells that showed a sensitivity to static changes in IPD also showed a sensitivity to dynamically changing IPD created by this binaural tonal combination. The discharges were highly periodic and tightly synchronized to a particular phase of the binaural beat cycle. High synchrony can be attributed to the fact that cortical neurons typically respond to an excitatory stimulus with but a single spike that is often precisely timed to stimulus onset. A period histogram, binned on the binaural beat frequency (fb), produced an equivalent IPD-sensitivity function for dynamically changing interaural phase. For neurons sensitive to both static and continuously changing interaural phase there was good correspondence between their static (phi s) and dynamic (phi d

  13. Differential effects of ciguatoxin and maitotoxin in primary cultures of cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Martin, Victor; Vale, Carmen; Antelo, Alvaro; Hirama, Masahiro; Yamashita, Shuji; Vieytes, Mercedes R; Botana, Luis M

    2014-08-18

    Ciguatoxins (CTXs) and maitotoxins (MTXs) are polyether ladder shaped toxins derived from the dinoflagellate Gambierdiscus toxicus. Despite the fact that MTXs are 3 times larger than CTXs, part of the structure of MTXs resembles that of CTXs. To date, the synthetic ciguatoxin, CTX 3C has been reported to activate voltage-gated sodium channels, whereas the main effect of MTX is inducing calcium influx into the cell leading to cell death. However, there is a lack of information regarding the effects of these toxins in a common cellular model. Here, in order to have an overview of the main effects of these toxins in mice cortical neurons, we examined the effects of MTX and the synthetic ciguatoxin CTX 3C on the main voltage dependent ion channels in neurons, sodium, potassium, and calcium channels as well as on membrane potential, cytosolic calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)]c), intracellular pH (pHi), and neuronal viability. Regarding voltage-gated ion channels, neither CTX 3C nor MTX affected voltage-gated calcium or potassium channels, but while CTX 3C had a large effect on voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSC) by shifting the activation and inactivation curves to more hyperpolarized potentials and decreasing peak sodium channel amplitude, MTX, at 5 nM, had no effect on VGSC activation and inactivation but decreased peak sodium current amplitude. Other major differences between both toxins were the massive calcium influx and intracellular acidification produced by MTX but not by CTX 3C. Indeed, the novel finding that MTX produces acidosis supports a pathway recently described in which MTX produces calcium influx via the sodium-hydrogen exchanger (NHX). For the first time, we found that VGSC blockers partially blocked the MTX-induced calcium influx, intracellular acidification, and protected against the short-term MTX-induced cytotoxicity. The results presented here provide the first report that shows the comparative effects of two prototypical ciguatera toxins, CTX 3C

  14. Protective effects of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonism on VX-induced neuronal cell death in cultured rat cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yushan; Weiss, M Tracy; Yin, Junfei; Tenn, Catherine C; Nelson, Peggy D; Mikler, John R

    2008-01-01

    Exposure of the central nervous system to organophosphorus (OP) nerve agents induces seizures and neuronal cell death. Here we report that the OP nerve agent, VX, induces apoptotic-like cell death in cultured rat cortical neurons. The VX effects on neurons were concentration-dependent, with an IC(50) of approximately 30 microM. Blockade of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDAR) with 50 microM. D-2-amino-5-phosphonovalerate (APV) diminished 30 microM VX-induced total cell death, as assessed by alamarBlue assay and Hoechst staining. In contrast, neither antagonists of alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid receptors (AMPARs) nor metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) had any effect on VX-induced neurotoxicity. VX-induced neuronal cell death could not be solely attributed to acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibition, since neither the reversible pharmacological cholinesterase inhibitor, physostigmine, nor the muscarinic receptor antagonist, atropine, affected VX-induced cell death. Importantly, APV was found to be therapeutically effective against VX-induced cell death up to 2 h post VX exposure. These results suggest that NMDARs, but not AMPARs or mGluRs, play important roles in VX-induced cell death in cultured rat cortical neurons. Based on their therapeutic effects, NMDAR antagonists may be beneficial in the treatment of VX-induced neurotoxicities.

  15. Context- and Output Layer-Dependent Long-Term Ensemble Plasticity in a Sensory Circuit.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Yoshiyuki; Bhaukaurally, Khaleel; Madarász, Tamás J; Pouget, Alexandre; Rodriguez, Ivan; Carleton, Alan

    2017-03-08

    Sensory information is translated into ensemble representations by various populations of projection neurons in brain circuits. The dynamics of ensemble representations formed by distinct channels of output neurons in diverse behavioral contexts remains largely unknown. We studied the two output neuron layers in the olfactory bulb (OB), mitral and tufted cells, using chronic two-photon calcium imaging in awake mice. Both output populations displayed similar odor response profiles. During passive sensory experience, both populations showed reorganization of ensemble odor representations yet stable pattern separation across days. Intriguingly, during active odor discrimination learning, mitral but not tufted cells exhibited improved pattern separation, although both populations showed reorganization of ensemble representations. An olfactory circuitry model suggests that cortical feedback on OB interneurons can trigger both forms of plasticity. In conclusion, we show that different OB output layers display unique context-dependent long-term ensemble plasticity, allowing parallel transfer of non-redundant sensory information to downstream centers. VIDEO ABSTRACT.

  16. Neuronal and microglial regulators of cortical wiring: usual and novel guideposts

    PubMed Central

    Squarzoni, Paola; Thion, Morgane S.; Garel, Sonia

    2015-01-01

    Neocortex functioning relies on the formation of complex networks that begin to be assembled during embryogenesis by highly stereotyped processes of cell migration and axonal navigation. The guidance of cells and axons is driven by extracellular cues, released along by final targets or intermediate targets located along specific pathways. In particular, guidepost cells, originally described in the grasshopper, are considered discrete, specialized cell populations located at crucial decision points along axonal trajectories that regulate tract formation. These cells are usually early-born, transient and act at short-range or via cell-cell contact. The vast majority of guidepost cells initially identified were glial cells, which play a role in the formation of important axonal tracts in the forebrain, such as the corpus callosum, anterior, and post-optic commissures as well as optic chiasm. In the last decades, tangential migrating neurons have also been found to participate in the guidance of principal axonal tracts in the forebrain. This is the case for several examples such as guideposts for the lateral olfactory tract (LOT), corridor cells, which open an internal path for thalamo-cortical axons and Cajal-Retzius cells that have been involved in the formation of the entorhino-hippocampal connections. More recently, microglia, the resident macrophages of the brain, were specifically observed at the crossroads of important neuronal migratory routes and axonal tract pathways during forebrain development. We furthermore found that microglia participate to the shaping of prenatal forebrain circuits, thereby opening novel perspectives on forebrain development and wiring. Here we will review the last findings on already known guidepost cell populations and will discuss the role of microglia as a potentially new class of atypical guidepost cells. PMID:26236185

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

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-09-01

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

  19. Homeostatic regulation of synaptic excitability: tonic GABAA receptor currents replace Ih in cortical pyramidal neurons of HCN1 knockout mice

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xiangdong; Shu, Shaofang; Schwartz, Lauren C.; Sun, Chengsan; Kapur, Jaideep; Bayliss, Douglas A.

    2010-01-01

    Homeostatic control of synaptic efficacy is often mediated by dynamic regulation of excitatory synaptic receptors. Here, we report a novel form of homeostatic synaptic plasticity based on regulation of shunt currents that control dendritosomatic information transfer. In cortical pyramidal neurons from wild type mice, HCN1 channels underlie a dendritic hyperpolarization-activated cationic current (Ih) that serves to limit temporal summation of synaptic inputs. In HCN1 knockout mice, as expected, Ih is reduced in pyramidal neurons and its effects on synaptic summation are strongly diminished. Unexpectedly, we found a markedly enhanced bicuculline- and L-655,708-sensitive background GABAA current in these cells that could be attributed to selective up-regulation of GABAA α5 subunit expression in the cortex of HCN1 knockout mice. Strikingly, despite diminished Ih, baseline sub-linear summation of evoked EPSPs was unchanged in pyramidal neurons from HCN1 knockout mice; however, blocking tonic GABAA currents with bicuculline enhanced synaptic summation more strongly in pyramidal cells from HCN1 knockout mice than in those cells from wild type mice. Increasing tonic GABAA receptor conductance in the context of reduced Ih, using computational or pharmacological approaches, restored normal baseline synaptic summation, as observed in neurons from HCN1 knockout mice. These data indicate that up-regulation of α5 subunit-mediated GABAA receptor tonic current compensates quantitatively for loss of dendritic Ih in cortical pyramidal neurons from HCN1 knockout mice to maintain normal synaptic summation; they further imply that dendritosomatic synaptic efficacy is a controlled variable for homeostatic regulation of cortical neuron excitability in vivo. PMID:20164346

  20. Neuronal avalanches are diverse and precise activity patterns that are stable for many hours in cortical slice cultures.

    PubMed

    Beggs, John M; Plenz, Dietmar

    2004-06-02

    A major goal of neuroscience is to elucidate mechanisms of cortical information processing and storage. Previous work from our laboratory (Beggs and Plenz, 2003) revealed that propagation of local field potentials (LFPs) in cortical circuits could be described by the same equations that govern avalanches. Whereas modeling studies suggested that these "neuronal avalanches" were optimal for information transmission, it was not clear what role they could play in information storage. Work from numerous other laboratories has shown that cortical structures can generate reproducible spatiotemporal patterns of activity that could be used as a substrate for memory. Here, we show that although neuronal avalanches lasted only a few milliseconds, their spatiotemporal patterns were also stable and significantly repeatable even many hours later. To investigate these issues, we cultured coronal slices of rat cortex for 4 weeks on 60-channel microelectrode arrays and recorded spontaneous extracellular LFPs continuously for 10 hr. Using correlation-based clustering and a global contrast function, we found that each cortical culture spontaneously produced 4736 +/- 2769 (mean +/- SD) neuronal avalanches per hour that clustered into 30 +/- 14 statistically significant families of spatiotemporal patterns. In 10 hr of recording, over 98% of the mutual information shared by these avalanche patterns were retained. Additionally, jittering analysis revealed that the correlations between avalanches were temporally precise to within +/-4 msec. The long-term stability, diversity, and temporal precision of these avalanches indicate that they fulfill many of the requirements expected of a substrate for memory and suggest that they play a central role in both information transmission and storage within cortical networks.

  1. Neuroprotection of Ilex latifolia and caffeoylquinic acid derivatives against excitotoxic and hypoxic damage of cultured rat cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Kim, Joo Youn; Lee, Hong Kyu; Hwang, Bang Yeon; Kim, SeungHwan; Yoo, Jae Kuk; Seong, Yeon Hee

    2012-06-01

    Ilex latifolia (Aquifoliaceae), one of the primary components of "Ku-ding-cha", has been used in Chinese folk medicine to treat headaches and various inflammatory diseases. A previous study demonstrated that the ethanol extract of I. latifolia could protect against ischemic apoptotic brain damage in rats. The present study investigated the protective activity of I. latifolia against glutamate-induced neurotoxicity using cultured rat cortical neurons in order to explain a possible mechanism related to its inhibitory effect on ischemic brain damage and identified potentially active compounds from it. Exposure of cultured cortical neurons to 500 μM glutamate for 12 h triggered neuronal cell death. I. latifolia (10-100 μg/mL) inhibited glutamate-induced neuronal death, elevation of intracellular calcium ([Ca(2+)](i)), generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), the increase of a pro-apoptotic protein, BAX, and the decrease of an anti-apoptotic protein, BcL-2. Hypoxia-induced neuronal cell death was also inhibited by I. latifolia. 3,4-Dicaffeoylquinic acid (diCQA), 3,5-diCQA, and 3,5-diCQA methyl ester isolated from I. latifolia also inhibited the glutamate-induced increase in [Ca(2+)](i), generation of ROS, the change of apoptosis-related proteins, and neuronal cell death; and hypoxia-induced neuronal cell death. These results suggest that I. latifolia and its active compounds prevented glutamate-induced neuronal cell damage by inhibiting increase of [Ca(2+)](i), generation of ROS, and resultantly apoptotic pathway. In addition, the neuroprotective effects of I. latifolia on ischemia-induced brain damage might be associated with the anti-excitatory and anti-oxidative actions and could be attributable to these active compounds, CQAs.

  2. Activities of visual cortical and hippocampal neurons co-fluctuate in freely moving rats during spatial behavior

    PubMed Central

    Haggerty, Daniel Christopher; Ji, Daoyun

    2015-01-01

    Visual cues exert a powerful control over hippocampal place cell activities that encode external spaces. The functional interaction of visual cortical neurons and hippocampal place cells during spatial navigation behavior has yet to be elucidated. Here we show that, like hippocampal place cells, many neurons in the primary visual cortex (V1) of freely moving rats selectively fire at specific locations as animals run repeatedly on a track. The V1 location-specific activity leads hippocampal place cell activity both spatially and temporally. The precise activities of individual V1 neurons fluctuate every time the animal travels through the track, in a correlated fashion with those of hippocampal place cells firing at overlapping locations. The results suggest the existence of visual cortical neurons that are functionally coupled with hippocampal place cells for spatial processing during natural behavior. These visual neurons may also participate in the formation and storage of hippocampal-dependent memories. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.08902.001 PMID:26349031

  3. Coexpression networks implicate human midfetal deep cortical projection neurons in the pathogenesis of autism

    PubMed Central

    Willsey, A. Jeremy; Sanders, Stephan J.; Li, Mingfeng; Dong, Shan; Tebbenkamp, Andrew T.; Muhle, Rebecca A.; Reilly, Steven K.; Lin, Leon; Fertuzinhos, Sofia; Miller, Jeremy A.; Murtha, Michael T.; Bichsel, Candace; Niu, Wei; Cotney, Justin; Ercan-Sencicek, A. Gulhan; Gockley, Jake; Gupta, Abha; Han, Wenqi; He, Xin; Hoffman, Ellen; Klei, Lambertus; Lei, Jing; Liu, Wenzhong; Liu, Li; Lu, Cong; Xu, Xuming; Zhu, Ying; Mane, Shrikant M.; Lein, Edward S.; Wei, Liping; Noonan, James P.; Roeder, Kathryn; Devlin, Bernie; Šestan, Nenad; State, Matthew W.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex developmental syndrome of unknown etiology. Recent studies employing exome- and genome-wide sequencing have identified nine high-confidence ASD (hcASD) genes. Working from the hypothesis that ASD-associated mutations in these biologically pleiotropic genes will disrupt intersecting developmental processes to contribute to a common phenotype, we have attempted to identify time periods, brain regions, and cell types in which these genes converge. We have constructed coexpression networks based on the hcASD “seed” genes, leveraging a rich expression data set encompassing multiple human brain regions across human development and into adulthood. By assessing enrichment of an independent set of probable ASD (pASD) genes, derived from the same sequencing studies, we demonstrate a key point of convergence in midfetal layer 5/6 cortical projection neurons. This approach informs when, where, and in what cell types mutations in these specific genes may be productively studied to clarify ASD pathophysiology. PMID:24267886

  4. Neuronal networks and mediators of cortical neurovascular coupling responses in normal and altered brain states.

    PubMed

    Lecrux, C; Hamel, E

    2016-10-05

    Brain imaging techniques that use vascular signals to map changes in neuronal activity, such as blood oxygenation level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging, rely on the spatial and temporal coupling between changes in neurophysiology and haemodynamics, known as 'neurovascular coupling (NVC)'. Accordingly, NVC responses, mapped by changes in brain haemodynamics, have been validated for different stimuli under physiological conditions. In the cerebral cortex, the networks of excitatory pyramidal cells and inhibitory interneurons generating the changes in neural activity and the key mediators that signal to the vascular unit have been identified for some incoming afferent pathways. The neural circuits recruited by whisker glutamatergic-, basal forebrain cholinergic- or locus coeruleus noradrenergic pathway stimulation were found to be highly specific and discriminative, particularly when comparing the two modulatory systems to the sensory response. However, it is largely unknown whether or not NVC is still reliable when brain states are altered or in disease conditions. This lack of knowledge is surprising since brain imaging is broadly used in humans and, ultimately, in conditions that deviate from baseline brain function. Using the whisker-to-barrel pathway as a model of NVC, we can interrogate the reliability of NVC under enhanced cholinergic or noradrenergic modulation of cortical circuits that alters brain states.This article is part of the themed issue 'Interpreting BOLD: a dialogue between cognitive and cellular neuroscience'.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-01

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

  6. Effects of Hypocretin/Orexin and Major Transmitters of Arousal on Fast Spiking Neurons in Mouse Cortical Layer 6B

    PubMed Central

    Wenger Combremont, Anne-Laure; Bayer, Laurence; Dupré, Anouk; Mühlethaler, Michel; Serafin, Mauro

    2016-01-01

    Fast spiking (FS) GABAergic neurons are thought to be involved in the generation of high-frequency cortical rhythms during the waking state. We previously showed that cortical layer 6b (L6b) was a specific target for the wake-promoting transmitter, hypocretin/orexin (hcrt/orx). Here, we have investigated whether L6b FS cells were sensitive to hcrt/orx and other transmitters associated with cortical activation. Recordings were thus made from L6b FS cells in either wild-type mice or in transgenic mice in which GFP-positive GABAergic cells are parvalbumin positive. Whereas in a control condition hcrt/orx induced a strong increase in the frequency, but not amplitude, of spontaneous synaptic currents, in the presence of TTX, it had no effect at all on miniature synaptic currents. Hcrt/orx effect was thus presynaptic although not by an action on glutamatergic terminals but rather on neighboring cells. In contrast, noradrenaline and acetylcholine depolarized and excited these cells through a direct postsynaptic action. Neurotensin, which is colocalized in hcrt/orx neurons, also depolarized and excited these cells but the effect was indirect. Morphologically, these cells exhibited basket-like features. These results suggest that hcrt/orx, noradrenaline, acetylcholine, and neurotensin could contribute to high-frequency cortical activity through an action on L6b GABAergic FS cells. PMID:27235100

  7. Stereotyped responses of Drosophila peptidergic neuronal ensemble depend on downstream neuromodulators.

    PubMed

    Mena, Wilson; Diegelmann, Sören; Wegener, Christian; Ewer, John

    2016-12-15

    Neuropeptides play a key role in the regulation of behaviors and physiological responses including alertness, social recognition, and hunger, yet, their mechanism of action is poorly understood. Here, we focus on the endocrine control ecdysis behavior, which is used by arthropods to shed their cuticle at the end of every molt. Ecdysis is triggered by ETH (Ecdysis triggering hormone), and we show that the response of peptidergic neurons that produce CCAP (crustacean cardioactive peptide), which are key targets of ETH and control the onset of ecdysis behavior, depends fundamentally on the actions of neuropeptides produced by other direct targets of ETH and released in a broad paracrine manner within the CNS; by autocrine influences from the CCAP neurons themselves; and by inhibitory actions mediated by GABA. Our findings provide insights into how this critical insect behavior is controlled and general principles for understanding how neuropeptides organize neuronal activity and behaviors.

  8. Distribution of cortical neurons projecting to dorsal column nuclear complex and spinal cord in the hedgehog tenrec, Echinops telfairi.

    PubMed

    Künzle, H; Rehkämper, G

    1992-01-01

    Using retrograde axonal flow and wheatgerm agglutinin conjugated to horseradish peroxidase, we studied the distribution of cortical neurons giving rise to spinal and dorsal column nuclear projections, and correlated the regions involved in the projections with the cytoarchitectonic areas recently identified in the lesser hedgehog tenrec, Echinops telfairi (Insectivora). Labeled cortical neurons were most numerous following injections of tracer into higher cervical segments, whereas almost none were found following thoracic injections. The cortical labeling appeared more prominent ipsilaterally than contralaterally after spinal injections, although it was more prominent on the contralateral side after injection into the dorsal column nuclear complex. The majority of labeled neurons found in lamina V occupied the neocortex adjacent to the interhemispheric fissure along the rostrocaudal extent of the small corpus callosum. This location corresponded to an intermediate rostrocaudal portion of the hemisphere, and particularly to area 2 of Rehkämper. In some cases, adjacent portions of areas 1 and 3 were also involved, as well as neocortical regions of the lateral hemisphere. The present data did not suggest a somatotopic organization of the projections; likewise, evidence for the presence of more than one somatosensorimotor representation was sparse.

  9. Effects of training on neuronal activity and interactions in primary and higher visual cortices in the alert cat.

    PubMed

    Salazar, Rodrigo F; Kayser, Christoph; König, Peter

    2004-02-18

    The effects of behavioral training on early visual representations have been elusive when assessed with firing rates. Learning-induced changes in performance, however, suggest that representations should encompass early cortical stages. Here, we address the question of whether training-induced effects are pertinent to neuronal activity outside the task proper, which is a requirement if subsequent perceptional processes should profit from training. To search for a neuronal signature of training effects beyond firing rates, we measured local field potentials, multiunit and isolated spike activity during passive viewing of previously learned stimulus response associations (S+ and S-) in areas 17/18 and 21a of two alert cats. Evoked potential responses as well as gamma oscillations even during the first 200 msec were found to be stronger for S+ in both areas. Most importantly, the later parts of the response (>200 msec) not only exhibit a highly significant difference in coherent gamma oscillations for S+ and S- both within and across areas, but are also characterized by a pronounced preference in firing rate for S+ in area 21a, whereas primary cortex shows a nonsignificant trend for weaker spike responses. From these results, we conclude that training-induced plasticity occurs in adult visual cortex for behaviorally relevant stimuli by changing primarily the temporal structure of neuronal activity at early stages of cortical processing, whereas later stages of cortical processing express the increased coherence of their input in elevated firing rates.

  10. Phasic activation of the locus coeruleus enhances responses of primary sensory cortical neurons to peripheral receptive field stimulation.

    PubMed

    Waterhouse, B D; Moises, H C; Woodward, D J

    1998-04-20

    In the present study we examined the effects of phasic activation of the nucleus locus coeruleus (LC) on transmission of somatosensory information to the rat cerebral cortex. The rationale for this investigation was based on earlier findings that local microiontophoretic application of the putative LC transmitter, norepinephrine (NE), had facilitating actions on cortical neuronal responses to excitatory and inhibitory synaptic stimuli and more recent microdialysis experiments that have demonstrated increases in cortical levels of NE following phasic or tonic activation of LC. Glass micropipets were used to record the extracellular activity of single neurons in the somatosensory cortex of halothane-anesthetized rats. Somatosensory afferent pathways were activated by threshold level mechanical stimulation of the glabrous skin on the contralateral forepaw. Poststimulus time histograms were used to quantitate cortical neuronal responses before and at various time intervals after preconditioning burst activation of the ipsilateral LC. Excitatory and postexcitatory inhibitory responses to forepaw stimulation were enhanced when preceded by phasic activation of LC at conditioning intervals of 200-500 ms. These effects were anatomically specific in that they were only observed upon stimulation of brainstem sites close to (>150 micron) or within LC and were pharmacologically specific in that they were not consistently observed in animals where the LC-NE system had been disrupted by 6-OHDA pretreatment. Overall, these data suggest that following phasic activation of the LC efferent system, the efficacy of signal transmission through sensory networks in mammalian brain is enhanced.

  11. A primate-specific, brain isoform of KCNH2 affects cortical physiology, cognition, neuronal repolarization and risk of schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Huffaker, Stephen J; Chen, Jingshan; Nicodemus, Kristin K; Sambataro, Fabio; Yang, Feng; Mattay, Venkata; Lipska, Barbara K; Hyde, Thomas M; Song, Jian; Rujescu, Dan; Giegling, Ina; Mayilyan, Karine; Proust, Morgan J; Soghoyan, Armen; Caforio, Grazia; Callicott, Joseph H; Bertolino, Alessandro; Meyer-Lindenberg, Andreas; Chang, Jay; Ji, Yuanyuan; Egan, Michael F; Goldberg, Terry E; Kleinman, Joel E; Lu, Bai; Weinberger, Daniel R

    2009-05-01

    Organized neuronal firing is crucial for cortical processing and is disrupted in schizophrenia. Using rapid amplification of 5' complementary DNA ends in human brain, we identified a primate-specific isoform (3.1) of the ether-a-go-go-related K(+) channel KCNH2 that modulates neuronal firing. KCNH2-3.1 messenger RNA levels are comparable to full-length KCNH2 (1A) levels in brain but three orders of magnitude lower in heart. In hippocampus from individuals with schizophrenia, KCNH2-3.1 expression is 2.5-fold greater than KCNH2-1A expression. A meta-analysis of five clinical data sets (367 families, 1,158 unrelated cases and 1,704 controls) shows association of single nucleotide polymorphisms in KCNH2 with schizophrenia. Risk-associated alleles predict lower intelligence quotient scores and speed of cognitive processing, altered memory-linked functional magnetic resonance imaging signals and increased KCNH2-3.1 mRNA levels in postmortem hippocampus. KCNH2-3.1 lacks a domain that is crucial for slow channel deactivation. Overexpression of KCNH2-3.1 in primary cortical neurons induces a rapidly deactivating K(+) current and a high-frequency, nonadapting firing pattern. These results identify a previously undescribed KCNH2 channel isoform involved in cortical physiology, cognition and psychosis, providing a potential new therapeutic drug target.

  12. Neural Plasticity: Single Neuron Models for Discrimination and Generalization and an Experimental Ensemble Approach.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1983-06-01

    Commuents Regarding the Antagonistic Mechanisms Approach .0...... .................................... 67 C. Cognitive Applications...similarities between stimuli, and differentiation* a separation process. An analogous dichotomy in cognitive theory has been extensively studied by Tversky...tasks including perception. cognition , and action. Not all neurons are identical, there exist several anatomically defined categories of these cells

  13. 14,15-EET promotes mitochondrial biogenesis and protects cortical neurons against oxygen/glucose deprivation-induced apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lai; Chen, Man; Yuan, Lin; Xiang, Yuting; Zheng, Ruimao; Zhu, Shigong

    2014-07-18

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

  14. Effects of inhibitory amino acids on expression of GABAA Rα and glycine Rα1 in hypoxic rat cortical neurons during development

    PubMed Central

    Qian, H; Feng, Y; He, XZ; Yang, YL; Sung, JH; Xia, Y

    2011-01-01

    Recent studies suggest that GABA and glycine are protective to mature but toxic to immature cortical neurons during prolonged hypoxia. Since the action of these inhibitory amino acids is mediated by GABA and glycine receptors, the expression of these receptors is a critical factor in determining neuronal response to GABAA and glycine in hypoxia. Therefore, we asked whether in rat cortical neurons, 1) hypoxia alters the expression of the GABA and glycine receptors; 2) inhibitory amino acids change the course of GABA and glycine receptor expression; and 3) there are any differences between the immature and mature neurons. In cultured rat cortical neurons from day 4 (4 Days in Vitro or DIV 4) to day 20 (DIV 20), we observed that 1) GABAARα and GlyRα1 underwent differential changes in expression during the development in-vitro; 2) hypoxia for 3 days decreased GABAARα and GlyRα1 density in the neurons in-between DIV 4 and DIV 20, but did not induce a major change in immature (DIV 4) and mature (DIV 20) neurons; 3) during normoxia GABA, glycine and taurine decreased GABAARα and GlyRα1 density in the immature neurons, but had a tendency to increase the density in the mature neurons, except for taurine; 4) under hypoxia, all these amino acids decreased GABAARα and GlyRα1 density in most groups of the immature neurons with a slight effect on the mature neurons; and 5) δ-opioid receptor activation with DADLE increased GABAARα and GlyRα1 density in both the immature and mature neurons under normoxia and in the mature neurons under hypoxic condition. These data suggest that inhibitory amino acids differentially regulate the expression of GABAA and glycine receptors in rat cortical neurons in normoxic and hypoxic conditions with major differences between the immature and mature neurons. PMID:22018691

  15. ANEPIII, a new recombinant neurotoxic polypeptide derived from scorpion peptide, inhibits delayed rectifier, but not A-type potassium currents in rat primary cultured hippocampal and cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Li, Chun-Li; Zhang, Jing-Hai; Yang, Bao-Feng; Jiao, Jun-Dong; Wang, Ling; Wu, Chun-Fu

    2006-01-15

    A new recombinant neurotoxic polypeptide ANEPIII (BmK ANEPIII) derived from Scorpion peptide, which was demonstrated with antineuroexcitation properties in animal models, was examined for its action on K+ currents in primary cultured rat hippocampal and cortical neurons using the patch clamp technique in the whole-cell configuration. The delayed rectifier K+ current (I(k)) was inhibited by externally applied recombinant BmK ANEPIII, while the transient A-current (I(A)) remained virtually unaffected. BmK ANEPIII 3 microM, reduced the delayed rectifier current by 28.2% and 23.6% in cultured rat hippocampal and cortical neurons, respectively. The concentration of half-maximal block was 155.1 nM for hippocampal neurons and 227.2 nM for cortical neurons, respectively. These results suggest that BmK ANEPIII affect K+ currents, which may lead to a reduction in neuronal excitability.

  16. Branch specific and spike-order specific action potential invasion in basal, oblique, and apical dendrites of cortical pyramidal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Wen-Liang; Short, Shaina M.; Rich, Matthew T.; Oikonomou, Katerina D.; Singh, Mandakini B.; Sterjanaj, Enas V.; Antic, Srdjan D.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract. In neocortical pyramidal neurons, action potentials (APs) propagate from the axon into the dendritic tree to influence distal synapses. Traditionally, AP backpropagation was studied in the thick apical trunk. Here, we used the principles of optical imaging developed by Cohen to investigate AP invasion into thin dendritic branches (basal, oblique, and tuft) of prefrontal cortical L5 pyramidal neurons. Multisite optical recordings from neighboring dendrites revealed a clear dichotomy between two seemingly equal dendritic branches belonging to the same cell (“sister branches”). We documented the variable efficacy of AP invasion in basal and oblique branches by revealing their AP voltage waveforms. Using fast multisite calcium imaging, we found that trains of APs are filtered differently between two apical tuft branches. Although one dendritic branch passes all spikes in an AP train, another branch belonging to the same neuron, same cortical layer, and same path distance from the cell body, experiences only one spike. Our data indicate that the vast differences in dendritic voltage and calcium transients, detected in dendrites of pyramidal neurons, arise from a nonuniform distribution of A-type K+ conductance, an aggregate number of branch points in the path of the AP propagation and minute differences in dendritic diameter. PMID:26157997

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-05-01

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

  18. On the continuous differentiability of inter-spike intervals of synaptically connected cortical spiking neurons in a neuronal network.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Gautam; Kothare, Mayuresh V

    2013-12-01

    We derive conditions for continuous differentiability of inter-spike intervals (ISIs) of spiking neurons with respect to parameters (decision variables) of an external stimulating input current that drives a recurrent network of synaptically connected neurons. The dynamical behavior of individual neurons is represented by a class of discontinuous single-neuron models. We report here that ISIs of neurons in the network are continuously differentiable with respect to decision variables if (1) a continuously differentiable trajectory of the membrane potential exists between consecutive action potentials with respect to time and decision variables and (2) the partial derivative of the membrane potential of spiking neurons with respect to time is not equal to the partial derivative of their firing threshold with respect to time at the time of action potentials. Our theoretical results are supported by showing fulfillment of these conditions for a class of known bidimensional spiking neuron models.

  19. A 4-Dimensional Representation of Antennal Lobe Output Based on an Ensemble of Characterized Projection Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Staudacher, Erich M.; Huetteroth, Wolf; Schachtner, Joachim; Daly, Kevin C.

    2009-01-01

    A central problem facing studies of neural encoding in sensory systems is how to accurately quantify the extent of spatial and temporal responses. In this study, we take advantage of the relatively simple and stereotypic neural architecture found in invertebrates. We combine standard electrophysiological techniques, recently developed population analysis techniques, and novel anatomical methods to form an innovative 4-dimensional view of odor output representations in the antennal lobe of the moth Manduca sexta. This novel approach allows quantification of olfactory responses of characterized neurons with spike time resolution. Additionally, arbitrary integration windows can be used for comparisons with other methods such as imaging. By assigning statistical significance to changes in neuronal firing, this method can visualize activity across the entire antennal lobe. The resulting 4-dimensional representation of antennal lobe output complements imaging and multi-unit experiments yet provides a more comprehensive and accurate view of glomerular activation patterns in spike time resolution. PMID:19464513

  20. The Dynamics of Cortical Neuronal Activity in the First Minutes after Spontaneous Awakening in Rats and Mice

    PubMed Central

    Vyazovskiy, Vladyslav V.; Cui, Nanyi; Rodriguez, Alexander V.; Funk, Chadd; Cirelli, Chiara; Tononi, Giulio

    2014-01-01

    Study Objective: Upon awakening from sleep, a fully awake brain state is not reestablished immediately, but the origin and physiological properties of the distinct brain state during the first min after awakening are unclear. To investigate whether neuronal firing immediately upon arousal is different from the remaining part of the waking episode, we recorded and analyzed the dynamics of cortical neuronal activity in the first 15 min after spontaneous awakenings in freely moving rats and mice. Design: Intracortical recordings of the local field potential and neuronal activity in freely-moving mice and rats. Setting: Basic sleep research laboratory. Patients or Participants: WKY adult male rats, C57BL/6 adult male mice. Interventions: N/A. Measurements and Results: In both species the average population spiking activity upon arousal was initially low, though substantial variability in the dynamics of firing activity was apparent between individual neurons. A distinct population of neurons was found that was virtually silent in the first min upon awakening. The overall lower population spiking initially after awakening was associated with the occurrence of brief periods of generalized neuronal silence (OFF periods), whose frequency peaked immediately after awakening and then progressively declined. OFF periods incidence upon awakening was independent of ongoing locomotor activity but was sensitive to immediate preceding sleep/wake history. Notably, in both rats and mice if sleep before a waking episode was enriched in rapid eye movement sleep, the incidence of OFF periods was initially higher as compared to those waking episodes preceded mainly by nonrapid eye movement sleep. Conclusion: We speculate that an intrusion of sleep-like patterns of cortical neuronal activity into the wake state immediately after awakening may account for some of the changes in the behavior and cognitive function typical of what is referred to as sleep inertia. Citation: Vyazovskiy VV, Cui

  1. Regulation of intracellular calcium in cortical neurons transgenic for human Aβ40 and Aβ42 following nutritive challenge

    PubMed Central

    Shirwany, Najeeb A; Xie, Jun; Guo, Qing

    2009-01-01

    The pathogenesis of Alzheimer's Disease (AD) is not fully understood. Amyloid plaques could be causally linked to neuronal loss in AD. Two proteolytic products of the Amyloid Precursor Protein (APP), Amyloid β40 (Aβ40) and Amyloid β42 (Aβ42), are considered to be critical in the neurodegeneration seen in AD. However, in transgenic mice that overexpress human Aβ40 or Aβ42, it was shown that Aβ42 was much more amyloidogenic than Aβ40. In contrast to this observation, we have found that cultured cortical neurons from mice transgenic for human Aβ40 and for Aβ42 are both and statistically equally vulnerable to nutritive challenge induced by trophic factor withdrawal (TFW). Aberrant regulation of InsP3R (Inositol triphosphate receptor)-mediated calcium release has been implicated in neuronal cell death. It is however not clear whether this pathway plays a critical role in cortical neurons transgenic for different species of human Aβ. We now report that Aβ40 and Aβ42 equally exacerbated intracellular calcium response to TFW in cortical neurons following TFW. When bradykinin (BK), a potent stimulant of InsP3R-mediated calcium release from ER, was applied to these cells, wild-type (WT) neurons exhibited a steep rise in [Ca2+]i but this was not observed in either Aβ transgenic type. Similarly, when 1 μM Xestopongin C (XeC), a specific blocker of InsP3R, was applied to these neurons, WT cells showed a significant attenuation of increase in [Ca2+]i following TFW, while elevation in [Ca2+]i induced by TFW remained largely unchanged in Aβ40 and Aβ42 cells. Finally, when we treated these cells with a Ca2+ chelator (BAPTA; 10 μM), all three cell types had a marked attenuation of [Ca2+]i. These findings indicate that the exacerbated calcium dysregulation following TFW in Aβ transgenic neurons are likely to be mediated by calcium channels other than ER InsP3R receptors. Overall, our results also suggest that a highly amyloidogenic Abeta species, such as Aβ42

  2. Differential interactions of cerebellin precursor protein (Cbln) subtypes and neurexin variants for synapse formation of cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Joo, Jae-Yeol; Lee, Sung-Jin; Uemura, Takeshi; Yoshida, Tomoyuki; Yasumura, Misato; Watanabe, Masahiko; Mishina, Masayoshi

    2011-03-25

    Trans-synaptic interaction of postsynaptic glutamate receptor δ2 and presynaptic neurexins (NRXNs) through cerebellin precursor protein (Cbln) 1 mediates synapse formation in the cerebellum [T. Uemura, S.J. Lee, M. Yasumura, T. Takeuchi, T. Yoshida, M. Ra, R. Taguchi, K. Sakimura, M. Mishina, Cell 141 (2010) 1068-1079]. This finding raises a question whether other Cbln family members interact with NRXNs to regulate synapse formation in the forebrain. Here, we showed that Cbln1 and Cbln2 induced presynaptic differentiation of cultured cortical neurons, while Cbln4 exhibited little activity. When compared with neuroligin 1, Cbln1 and Cbln2 induced preferentially inhibitory presynaptic differentiation rather than excitatory one in cortical cultures. The synaptogenic activities of Cbln1 and Cbln2 were suppressed by the addition of the extracellular domain of NRXN1β to the cortical neuron cultures. Consistently, Cbln1 and Cbln2 showed robust binding activities to NRXN1α and three β-NRXNs, while only weak interactions were observed between Cbln4 and NRXNs. The interactions of Cbln1, Cbln2 and Cbln4 were selective for NRXN variants containing splice segment (S) 4. Affinities for NRXNs estimated by surface plasmon resonance analysis were variable among Cbln subtypes. Cbln1 showed higher affinities to NRXNs than Cbln2, while the binding ability of Cbln4 was much lower than those of Cbln1 and Cbln2. The affinities of Cbln1 and Cbln2 were comparable between NRXN1α and NRXN1β, but those for NRXN2β and NRXN3β were lower. These results suggest that Cbln subtypes exert synaptogenic activities in cortical neurons by differentially interacting with NRXN variants containing S4.

  3. Pharmacological Characterization of the Native Store-Operated Calcium Channels of Cortical Neurons from Embryonic Mouse Brain

    PubMed Central

    Chauvet, Sylvain; Jarvis, Louis; Chevallet, Mireille; Shrestha, Niroj; Groschner, Klaus; Bouron, Alexandre

    2016-01-01

    In the murine brain, the first post-mitotic cortical neurons formed during embryogenesis express store-operated channels (SOCs) sensitive to Pyr3, initially proposed as a blocker of the transient receptor potential channel of C type 3 (TRPC3 channel). However, Pyr3 does not discriminate between Orai and TRPC3 channels, questioning the contribution of TRPC3 in SOCs. This study was undertaken to clarify the molecular identity and the pharmacological profile of native SOCs from E13 cortical neurons. The mRNA expression of STIM1-2 and Orai1-3 was assessed by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. E13 cortical neurons expressed STIM1-2 mRNAs, with STIM2 being the predominant isoform. Only transcripts of Orai2 were found but no Orai1 and Orai3 mRNAs. Blockers of Orai and TRPC channels (Pyr6, Pyr10, EVP4593, SAR7334, and GSK-7975A) were used to further characterize the endogenous SOCs. Their activity was recorded using the fluorescent Ca2+ probe Fluo-4. Cortical SOCs were sensitive to the Orai blockers Pyr6 and GSK-7975A, as well as to EVP4593, zinc, copper, and gadolinium ions, the latter one being the most potent SOCs blocker tested (IC50 ∼10 nM). SOCs were insensitive to the TRPC channel blockers Pyr10 and SAR7334. In addition, preventing mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake inhibited SOCs which were unaffected by inhibitors of the Ca2+-independent phospholipase A2. Altogether, Orai2 channels are present at the beginning of the embryonic murine cortico-genesis and form the core component of native SOCs in the immature cortex. This Ca2+ route is likely to play a role in the formation of the brain cortex. PMID:28018223

  4. Stereotyped responses of Drosophila peptidergic neuronal ensemble depend on downstream neuromodulators

    PubMed Central

    Mena, Wilson; Diegelmann, Sören; Wegener, Christian; Ewer, John

    2016-01-01

    Neuropeptides play a key role in the regulation of behaviors and physiological responses including alertness, social recognition, and hunger, yet, their mechanism of action is poorly understood. Here, we focus on the endocrine control ecdysis behavior, which is used by ar