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Sample records for neuronal substrate fuel

  1. Stiff substrates enhance cultured neuronal network activity

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Quan-You; Zhang, Yan-Yan; Xie, Jing; Li, Chen-Xu; Chen, Wei-Yi; Liu, Bai-Lin; Wu, Xiao-an; Li, Shu-Na; Huo, Bo; Jiang, Lin-Hua; Zhao, Hu-Cheng

    2014-01-01

    The mechanical property of extracellular matrix and cell-supporting substrates is known to modulate neuronal growth, differentiation, extension and branching. Here we show that substrate stiffness is an important microenvironmental cue, to which mouse hippocampal neurons respond and integrate into synapse formation and transmission in cultured neuronal network. Hippocampal neurons were cultured on polydimethylsiloxane substrates fabricated to have similar surface properties but a 10-fold difference in Young's modulus. Voltage-gated Ca2+ channel currents determined by patch-clamp recording were greater in neurons on stiff substrates than on soft substrates. Ca2+ oscillations in cultured neuronal network monitored using time-lapse single cell imaging increased in both amplitude and frequency among neurons on stiff substrates. Consistently, synaptic connectivity recorded by paired recording was enhanced between neurons on stiff substrates. Furthermore, spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic activity became greater and more frequent in neurons on stiff substrates. Evoked excitatory transmitter release and excitatory postsynaptic currents also were heightened at synapses between neurons on stiff substrates. Taken together, our results provide compelling evidence to show that substrate stiffness is an important biophysical factor modulating synapse connectivity and transmission in cultured hippocampal neuronal network. Such information is useful in designing instructive scaffolds or supporting substrates for neural tissue engineering. PMID:25163607

  2. Substrate Deformation Predicts Neuronal Growth Cone Advance

    PubMed Central

    Athamneh, Ahmad I.M.; Cartagena-Rivera, Alexander X.; Raman, Arvind; Suter, Daniel M.

    2015-01-01

    Although pulling forces have been observed in axonal growth for several decades, their underlying mechanisms, absolute magnitudes, and exact roles are not well understood. In this study, using two different experimental approaches, we quantified retrograde traction force in Aplysia californica neuronal growth cones as they develop over time in response to a new adhesion substrate. In the first approach, we developed a novel method, to our knowledge, for measuring traction forces using an atomic force microscope (AFM) with a cantilever that was modified with an Aplysia cell adhesion molecule (apCAM)-coated microbead. In the second approach, we used force-calibrated glass microneedles coated with apCAM ligands to guide growth cone advance. The traction force exerted by the growth cone was measured by monitoring the microneedle deflection using an optical microscope. Both approaches showed that Aplysia growth cones can develop traction forces in the 100–102 nN range during adhesion-mediated advance. Moreover, our results suggest that the level of traction force is directly correlated to the stiffness of the microneedle, which is consistent with a reinforcement mechanism previously observed in other cell types. Interestingly, the absolute level of traction force did not correlate with growth cone advance toward the adhesion site, but the amount of microneedle deflection did. In cases of adhesion-mediated growth cone advance, the mean needle deflection was 1.05 ± 0.07 μm. By contrast, the mean deflection was significantly lower (0.48 ± 0.06 μm) when the growth cones did not advance. Our data support a hypothesis that adhesion complexes, which can undergo micron-scale elastic deformation, regulate the coupling between the retrogradely flowing actin cytoskeleton and apCAM substrates, stimulating growth cone advance if sufficiently abundant. PMID:26445437

  3. Piezoelectric substrates promote neurite growth in rat spinal cord neurons.

    PubMed

    Royo-Gascon, Núria; Wininger, Michael; Scheinbeim, Jerry I; Firestein, Bonnie L; Craelius, William

    2013-01-01

    We tested the possibility that exogenous electrical activity from a piezoelectric substrate could influence neuronal structure in cultured spinal cord neurons. Oscillating electrical fields were delivered to rat neurons via substrates consisting of poly(vinylidene fluoride) film, both in its piezoelectric (PZ) and non-piezoelectric (PV) forms. To induce oscillating electrical fields at the film surfaces, a 50 Hz mechanical vibration was applied. After 4 days of mechano-electrical stimulation, neuronal densities were increased by 115% and neurons grew 79% more neurites, with more than double the branch points, compared with neurons grown on non-stimulated PZ films (p < 0.001). The effects were due to electrical field, because vibration applied to non-PZ films did not increase neurite growth. We conclude that the oscillating electric fields produced from PZ polymer substrates can induce plastic changes in neurons of the central nervous system and herein we show its influence on neurite growth and branching. PMID:22864823

  4. Substrate Topography Determines Neuronal Polarization and Growth In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Micholt, Liesbeth; Gärtner, Annette; Prodanov, Dimiter; Braeken, Dries; Dotti, Carlos G.; Bartic, Carmen

    2013-01-01

    The establishment of neuronal connectivity depends on the correct initial polarization of the young neurons. In vivo, developing neurons sense a multitude of inputs and a great number of molecules are described that affect their outgrowth. In vitro, many studies have shown the possibility to influence neuronal morphology and growth by biophysical, i.e. topographic, signaling. In this work we have taken this approach one step further and investigated the impact of substrate topography in the very early differentiation stages of developing neurons, i.e. when the cell is still at the round stage and when the first neurite is forming. For this purpose we fabricated micron sized pillar structures with highly reproducible feature sizes, and analyzed neurons on the interface of flat and topographic surfaces. We found that topographic signaling was able to attract the polarization markers of mouse embryonic neurons -N-cadherin, Golgi-centrosome complex and the first bud were oriented towards topographic stimuli. Consecutively, the axon was also preferentially extending along the pillars. These events seemed to occur regardless of pillar dimensions in the range we examined. However, we found differences in neurite length that depended on pillar dimensions. This study is one of the first to describe in detail the very early response of hippocampal neurons to topographic stimuli. PMID:23785482

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-05-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Morillon, Benjamin; Schroeder, Charles E.

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-05-01

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

  8. Image analysis of neuronal pathfinding on microfabricated substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hockberger, Philip E.; Soekarno, Anita

    1994-08-01

    We have used digital imaging microscopy to evaluate possible guidance mechanisms of mouse neuroblastoma cells cultured on microfabricated glass substrates. Substrates were bound with either small charged amine or uncharged alkane molecules using silane-coupling chemistry or covered with proteins (laminin, collagen, fibronectin, albumin) by adsorption. Photolithographic procedures were used to pattern substrates with amine - alkane, amine - protein and alkane - protein combinations. Interference reflection microscopy (IRM) was used to visualize sites of cellular attachment on substrates (focal and close contacts), and image processing techniques were used to quantify the results in three different ways: total cellular area in contact with a substrate, area corresponding to focal and close contacts, and the percentage of focal and close contacts on each substrate. Cells attached to and extended neurites on each of the substrates were tested. IRM images of growth cones displayed similar gray levels on amine, alkane, fibronectin, and albumin substrates, whereas images on laminin and collagen were brighter. Brightness on laminin substrates was correlated with less area of focal contact and greater area with no contact. When cells were provided with choices on patterned substrates, they displayed the following preference of attachment: laminin, fibronectin, collagen>amine>alkane>albumin. This hierarchy reflected greater total surface area on preferred substrates. There was, however, no correlation between the hierarchy and the area corresponding to focal and close contacts or the percentage of contacts on different substrates. Our results support several recent observations which demonstrated that guidance was not correlated with differential adhesivity. These results are more in line with the theory that guidance is controlled by a signal transduction mechanism that couples locomotion with activation of membrane receptors.

  9. Molecular functionalization of carbon nanotubes and use as substrates for neuronal growth.

    PubMed

    Mattson, M P; Haddon, R C; Rao, A M

    2000-06-01

    Carbon nanotubes are strong, flexible, conduct electrical current, and can be functionalized with different molecules, properties that may be useful in basic and applied neuroscience research. We report the first application of carbon nanotube technology to neuroscience research. Methods were developed for growing embryonic rat-brain neurons on multiwalled carbon nanotubes. On unmodified nanotubes, neurons extend only one or two neurites, which exhibit very few branches. In contrast, neurons grown on nanotubes coated with the bioactive molecule 4-hydroxynonenal elaborate multiple neurites, which exhibit extensive branching. These findings establish the feasability of using nanotubes as substrates for nerve cell growth and as probes of neuronal function at the nanometer scale.

  10. Nanostructured superhydrophobic substrates trigger the development of 3D neuronal networks.

    PubMed

    Limongi, Tania; Cesca, Fabrizia; Gentile, Francesco; Marotta, Roberto; Ruffilli, Roberta; Barberis, Andrea; Dal Maschio, Marco; Petrini, Enrica Maria; Santoriello, Stefania; Benfenati, Fabio; Di Fabrizio, Enzo

    2013-02-11

    The generation of 3D networks of primary neurons is a big challenge in neuroscience. Here, a novel method is presented for a 3D neuronal culture on superhydrophobic (SH) substrates. How nano-patterned SH devices stimulate neurons to build 3D networks is investigated. Scanning electron microscopy and confocal imaging show that soon after plating neurites adhere to the nanopatterned pillar sidewalls and they are subsequently pulled between pillars in a suspended position. These neurons display an enhanced survival rate compared to standard cultures and develop mature networks with physiological excitability. These findings underline the importance of using nanostructured SH surfaces for directing 3D neuronal growth, as well as for the design of biomaterials for neuronal regeneration.

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-26

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Cells sense and interpret mechanical cues, including cell-cell and cell-substrate interactions, in the microenvironment to collectively regulate various physiological functions. Understanding the influences of these mechanical factors on cell behavior is critical for fundamental cell biology and for the development of novel strategies in regenerative medicine. Here, we demonstrate plasma lithography patterning on elastomeric substrates for elucidating the influences of mechanical cues on neuronal differentiation and neuritogenesis. The neuroblastoma cells form neuronal spheres on plasma-treated regions, which geometrically confine the cells over two weeks. The elastic modulus of the elastomer is controlled simultaneously by the crosslinker concentration. The cell-substrate mechanical interactions are also investigated by controlling the size of neuronal spheres with different cell seeding densities. These physical cues are shown to modulate with the formation of focal adhesions, neurite outgrowth, and the morphology of neuroblastoma. By systematic adjustment of these cues, along with computational biomechanical analysis, we demonstrate the interrelated mechanoregulatory effects of substrate elasticity and cell size. Taken together, our results reveal that the neuronal differentiation and neuritogenesis of neuroblastoma cells are collectively regulated via the cell-substrate mechanical interactions. PMID:25376886

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-11-01

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

  16. Study of neuron survival on polypyrrole-embedded single-walled carbon nanotube substrates for long-term growth conditions.

    PubMed

    Hernández-Ferrer, Javier; Pérez-Bruzón, Rodolfo N; Azanza, María J; González, Mónica; Del Moral, Raquel; Ansón-Casaos, Alejandro; de la Fuente, Jesús M; Marijuan, Pedro C; Martínez, M Teresa

    2014-12-01

    Cultures of primary embryonic rat brain hippocampus neurons with supporting glia cells were carried out on different substrates containing polypyrrole (PPy) and/or single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs). Neuron adhesion, neurites and dendrites branching elongation, and development of neuron networks on substrates were followed by phase-contrast optical microscopy and quantified to state cell survival and proliferation. Suspensions of as-grown and purified SWCNTs were sprayed on a glass coverslips and PPy/SWCNTs were deposited by potentiodynamic electrochemical deposition. Cell neurotoxicity revealed by neuron death was very high for purified SWCNTs substrates in good agreement with [3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide] (MTT) test showing lower viability on SWCNTs containing substrates compared with PPy-substrates and control samples probably due to the metal content and the carboxylic groups introduced during the purification. It is interesting to highlight that neurons grown on PPy-substrates adhere developing neurites and branching dendrites earlier even than on control cultures. On subsequent days the neurons are able to adapt to nanotube substrates developing neuron networks for 14-day cultures with similar patterns of complexity for control, PPy and PPy/SWCNT substrates. PPy/SWCNT substrates show a lower impedance value at frequencies under 1 Hz. We have come to the conclusion that glia cells and PPy added to the culture medium and substrates respectively, improve in some degree nanotube biocompatibility, cell adhesion and hence cell viability.

  17. Substrate Availability of Mutant SPT Alters Neuronal Branching and Growth Cone Dynamics in Dorsal Root Ganglia

    PubMed Central

    Jun, Byung Kyu; Chandra, Ankush; Kuljis, Dika; Schmidt, Brian P.

    2015-01-01

    Serine palmitoyltransferase (SPT) is a key enzyme in the first step of sphingolipid biosynthesis. Mutations in the SPTLC1 gene that encodes for SPT subunits cause hereditary sensory neuropathy type 1. However, little is understood about how mutant SPT regulates mechanisms of sensory neuron and axonal growth. Using transgenic mice overexpressing the C133W SPT mutant, we found that mutant dorsal root ganglia (DRG) during growth in vitro exhibit increased neurite length and branching, coinciding with elevated expression of actin-cross-linking proteins at the neuronal growth cone, namely phosphorylated Ezrin/Radixin/Moesin. In addition, inhibition of SPT was able to reverse the mutant phenotype. Because mutant SPT preferentially uses l-alanine over its canonical substrate l-serine, we also investigated the effects of substrate availability on DRG neurons. Supplementation with l-serine or removal of l-alanine independently restored normal growth patterns in mutant SPTLC1C133W DRG. Therefore, we report that substrate availability and selectivity of SPT influence the regulation of neurite growth in DRG neurons. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Hereditary sensory neuropathy type 1 is an autosomal-dominant disorder that leads to a sensory neuropathy due to mutations in the serine palmitoyltransferase (SPT) enzyme. We investigated how mutant SPT and substrate levels regulate neurite growth. Because SPT is an important enzyme in the synthesis of sphingolipids, our data are of broader significance to other peripheral and metabolic disorders. PMID:26446223

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

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

  19. Peripheral Nervous System Genes Expressed in Central Neurons Induce Growth on Inhibitory Substrates

    PubMed Central

    Buchser, William J.; Smith, Robin P.; Pardinas, Jose R.; Haddox, Candace L.; Hutson, Thomas; Moon, Lawrence; Hoffman, Stanley R.; Bixby, John L.; Lemmon, Vance P.

    2012-01-01

    Trauma to the spinal cord and brain can result in irreparable loss of function. This failure of recovery is in part due to inhibition of axon regeneration by myelin and chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs). Peripheral nervous system (PNS) neurons exhibit increased regenerative ability compared to central nervous system neurons, even in the presence of inhibitory environments. Previously, we identified over a thousand genes differentially expressed in PNS neurons relative to CNS neurons. These genes represent intrinsic differences that may account for the PNS’s enhanced regenerative ability. Cerebellar neurons were transfected with cDNAs for each of these PNS genes to assess their ability to enhance neurite growth on inhibitory (CSPG) or permissive (laminin) substrates. Using high content analysis, we evaluated the phenotypic profile of each neuron to extract meaningful data for over 1100 genes. Several known growth associated proteins potentiated neurite growth on laminin. Most interestingly, novel genes were identified that promoted neurite growth on CSPGs (GPX3, EIF2B5, RBMX). Bioinformatic approaches also uncovered a number of novel gene families that altered neurite growth of CNS neurons. PMID:22701605

  20. Nitrite as a candidate substrate in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Faraghi, Neda; Ebrahimi, Sirous

    2012-08-01

    Current generation using nitrite as substrate (pH 6.9, 40 mgN l(-1)) in a nitrite-fed microbial fuel cell was investigated under anaerobic and aerobic anodic conditions as an alternative to the biological nitrite oxidation process. Cell current, coulombic efficiency (CE) and power generation of 0.04 mA, 30 ± 2 % and 19.3 ± 3.3 μW m(-2), respectively, were observed under anaerobic conditions while complete nitrite degradation (no current) was obtained under aerobic conditions. Switching from aerobic to anaerobic anode enhanced the CE and power generation (39 ± 1 % and 29 ± 4.3 μW m(-2)).

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-05-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-05-01

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

  3. The potential of apolipoprotein E4 to act as a substrate for primary cultures of hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Kim, Kwang-Min; Vicenty, Janice; Palmore, G Tayhas R

    2013-04-01

    The E4 isoform of apolipoprotein (apoE4) is known to be a major risk factor for Alzheimer's Disease (AD). Previous in vitro studies have shown apoE4 to have a negative effect on neuronal outgrowth when incubated with lipids. The effect of apoE4 itself on the development of neurons from the central nervous system (CNS), however, has not been well characterized. Consequently, apoE4 alone has not been pursued as a substrate for neuronal cultures. In this study, the effect of surface-bound apoE4 on developmental features of rat hippocampal neurons was examined. We show that apoE4 substrates elicit significantly enhanced values in all developmental features at day 2 of culture when compared to laminin (LN) substrates, which is the current substrate-of-choice for neuronal cultures. Interestingly, the adhesion of hippocampal neurons was found to be significantly lower on LN substrates than on glass substrates, but the axon lengths on both substrates were similar. In addition, this study demonstrates that the adhesion- and growth-enhancing effects of apoE4 substrates are not mediated by heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs), proteins that have been indicated to function as receptors or co-receptors for apoE4. In the absence of lipids, apoE4 appears to use an unknown pathway for up-regulating neuronal adhesion and neurite outgrowth. Our results indicate that apoE4 is better than LN as a substrate for primary cultures of CNS neurons and should be considered in the design of tissue engineered CNS.

  4. Ubiquitous molecular substrates for associative learning and activity-dependent neuronal facilitation.

    PubMed

    Matzel, L D; Talk, A C; Muzzio, I A; Rogers, R F

    1998-01-01

    Recent evidence suggests that many of the molecular cascades and substrates that contribute to learning-related forms of neuronal plasticity may be conserved across ostensibly disparate model systems. Notably, the facilitation of neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission that contribute to associative learning in Aplysia and Hermissenda, as well as associative LTP in hippocampal CA1 cells, all require (or are enhanced by) the convergence of a transient elevation in intracellular Ca2+ with transmitter binding to metabotropic cell-surface receptors. This temporal convergence of Ca2+ and G-protein-stimulated second-messenger cascades synergistically stimulates several classes of serine/threonine protein kinases, which in turn modulate receptor function or cell excitability through the phosphorylation of ion channels. We present a summary of the biophysical and molecular constituents of neuronal and synaptic facilitation in each of these three model systems. Although specific components of the underlying molecular cascades differ across these three systems, fundamental aspects of these cascades are widely conserved, leading to the conclusion that the conceptual semblance of these superficially disparate systems is far greater than is generally acknowledged. We suggest that the elucidation of mechanistic similarities between different systems will ultimately fulfill the goal of the model systems approach, that is, the description of critical and ubiquitous features of neuronal and synaptic events that contribute to memory induction.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-10-01

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

  6. New method to visualize neurons with DAT in slices of rat VTA using fluorescent substrate for DAT, ASP+

    PubMed

    Inyushin, Mikhail U; Arencibia-Albite, Francisco; de la Cruz, Angel; Vázquez-Torres, Rafael; Colon, Katiria; Sanabria, Priscila; Jiménez-Rivera, Carlos A

    2013-04-01

    The ventral tegmental area (VTA), and in particular dopamine (DA) neurons in this region of midbrain, has been shown to play an important role in motivation (goal-directed behavior), reward, and drug addiction. Most evidence that implicates VTA DA neurons in these functions are based on widely accepted but indirect electrophysiological characterization, including the hyperpolarization activated non-specific cation current (Ih), spike frequency, and inhibition by D2 receptor agonists. In this study, we used a known neuronal dopamine transporter (DAT) fluorescent substrate [4-(4- (dimethylamino) styryl)-N-methylpyridinium iodide] (ASP+) to visualize DAT-containing cell bodies of DA neurons in VTA region in rat brain slices. Uptake of 100 nM of ASP+ in brain slices of rat VTA region marked 38% of visible neurons, while other neurons from this region and 100% neurons from hippocampus slices were not fluorescent. Using patch-clamp techniques, we have found that pronounced Ih current was present in all fluorescent neurons from VTA area, also spike frequency was similar to the widely accepted values for DA neurons. Furthermore, additional study has shown that there are 84% coincidence of ASP+ fluorescence in neuronal cell bodies and Falck-Hillarp labeling of DA cells. Electrophysiological recordings during ASP+ application have confirmed that low concentrations (100 nM) of ASP+ have no visible effect on neuronal activity during 1-2 hours after staining. Thus, uptake of fluorescent monoamine analog ASP+ by DAT can be an additional criterion for identification of DAT-containing neurons in slices.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-28

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

  8. Laser fabricated discontinuous anisotropic microconical substrates as a new model scaffold to control the directionality of neuronal network outgrowth.

    PubMed

    Simitzi, C; Efstathopoulos, P; Kourgiantaki, A; Ranella, A; Charalampopoulos, I; Fotakis, C; Athanassakis, I; Stratakis, E; Gravanis, A

    2015-10-01

    Patterning of neuronal outgrowth in vitro is important in tissue engineering as well as for the development of neuronal interfaces with desirable characteristics. To date, this has been achieved with the aid of micro- and nanofabrication techniques giving rise to various anisotropic topographies, either in the form of continuous or discontinuous structures. In this study we propose a currently unexplored geometry of a 3D culture substrate for neuronal cell growth comprising discontinuous subcellular microstructures with anisotropic geometrical cross-section. Specifically, using laser precision 3D micro/nano fabrication techniques, silicon substrates comprising arrays of parallel oriented elliptical microcones (MCs) were fabricated to investigate whether a discontinuous geometry comprising anisotropic features at the subcellular level could influence the alignment of peripheral nervous system cell populations. It was shown that both Schwann cells and axons of sympathetic neurons were parallel oriented onto the MCs of elliptical shape, while they exhibited a random orientation onto the MCs of arbitrary shape. Notably, this topography-induced guidance effect was also observed in more complex cell culture systems, such as the organotypic culture whole dorsal root ganglia (DRG) explants. Our results suggest that a discontinuous topographical pattern could promote Schwann cell and axonal alignment, provided that it hosts anisotropic geometrical features, even though the sizes of those range at the subcellular lengthscale. The laser-patterned arrays of MCs presented here could potentially be a useful platform for patterning neurons into artificial networks, allowing the study of neuronal cells interactions under 3D ex-vivo conditions.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-06-01

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

  10. Epb41l5 competes with Delta as a substrate for Mib1 to coordinate specification and differentiation of neurons.

    PubMed

    Matsuda, Miho; Rand, Kinneret; Palardy, Greg; Shimizu, Nobuyuki; Ikeda, Hiromi; Dalle Nogare, Damian; Itoh, Motoyuki; Chitnis, Ajay B

    2016-09-01

    We identified Erythrocyte membrane protein band 4.1-like 5 (Epb41l5) as a substrate for the E3 ubiquitin ligase Mind bomb 1 (Mib1), which is essential for activation of Notch signaling. Although loss of Epb41l5 does not significantly alter the pattern of neural progenitor cells (NPCs) specified as neurons at the neural plate stage, it delays their delamination and differentiation after neurulation when NPCs normally acquire organized apical junctional complexes (AJCs) in the zebrafish hindbrain. Delays in differentiation are reduced by knocking down N-cadherin, a manipulation expected to help destabilize adherens junctions (AJs). This suggested that delays in neuronal differentiation in epb41l5-deficient embryos are related to a previously described role for Epb41l5 in facilitating disassembly of cadherin-dependent AJCs. Mib1 ubiquitylates Epb41l5 to promote its degradation. DeltaD can compete with Epb41l5 to reduce Mib1-dependent Epb41l5 degradation. In this context, increasing the number of NPCs specified to become neurons, i.e. cells expressing high levels of DeltaD, stabilizes Epb41l5 in the embryo. Together, these observations suggest that relatively high levels of Delta stabilize Epb41l5 in NPCs specified as neurons. This, we suggest, helps coordinate NPC specification with Epb41l5-dependent delamination and differentiation as neurons. PMID:27510968

  11. Epb41l5 competes with Delta as a substrate for Mib1 to coordinate specification and differentiation of neurons.

    PubMed

    Matsuda, Miho; Rand, Kinneret; Palardy, Greg; Shimizu, Nobuyuki; Ikeda, Hiromi; Dalle Nogare, Damian; Itoh, Motoyuki; Chitnis, Ajay B

    2016-09-01

    We identified Erythrocyte membrane protein band 4.1-like 5 (Epb41l5) as a substrate for the E3 ubiquitin ligase Mind bomb 1 (Mib1), which is essential for activation of Notch signaling. Although loss of Epb41l5 does not significantly alter the pattern of neural progenitor cells (NPCs) specified as neurons at the neural plate stage, it delays their delamination and differentiation after neurulation when NPCs normally acquire organized apical junctional complexes (AJCs) in the zebrafish hindbrain. Delays in differentiation are reduced by knocking down N-cadherin, a manipulation expected to help destabilize adherens junctions (AJs). This suggested that delays in neuronal differentiation in epb41l5-deficient embryos are related to a previously described role for Epb41l5 in facilitating disassembly of cadherin-dependent AJCs. Mib1 ubiquitylates Epb41l5 to promote its degradation. DeltaD can compete with Epb41l5 to reduce Mib1-dependent Epb41l5 degradation. In this context, increasing the number of NPCs specified to become neurons, i.e. cells expressing high levels of DeltaD, stabilizes Epb41l5 in the embryo. Together, these observations suggest that relatively high levels of Delta stabilize Epb41l5 in NPCs specified as neurons. This, we suggest, helps coordinate NPC specification with Epb41l5-dependent delamination and differentiation as neurons.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-04-01

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

  13. Kinetics of substrate degradation and electricity generation in anodic denitrification microbial fuel cell (AD-MFC).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jiqiang; Zheng, Ping; Zhang, Meng; Chen, Hui; Chen, Tingting; Xie, Zuofu; Cai, Jing; Abbas, Ghulam

    2013-12-01

    Effect of substrate concentration on substrate degradation and electricity generation in anodic denitrification microbial fuel cell (AD-MFC) was investigated over a broad range of substrate concentrations. Substrate degradation rates and power generation could be promoted with increasing substrate concentration in a certain range, but both of them would be inhibited at high substrate concentrations. Maximum denitrification rate of 1.26 ± 0.01 kg NO(-)-N/m(3)d and maximum output voltage of 1016.75 ± 4.74 mV could be achieved when initial NO3(-)-N concentration was 1999.95 ± 2.86 mg/L. Based on Han-Levenspiel model, kinetics of substrate degradation and power generation in the AD-MFC were established. According to the kinetic model, the half-saturation coefficient and the critical inhibitory concentration for nitrate were more than 200 and 4300 mg/L, respectively. The results demonstrated that AD-MFC was capable of treating nitrate-containing wastewater and generating electricity simultaneously, and tolerant to high strength nitrate-containing wastewater.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-07-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1988-11-01

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

  16. Honeybee Retinal Glial Cells Transform Glucose and Supply the Neurons with Metabolic Substrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1988-11-01

    The retina of the honeybee drone is a nervous tissue in which glial cells and photoreceptor cells (sensory neurons) constitute two distinct metabolic compartments. Retinal slices incubated with 2-deoxy[3H]glucose convert this glucose analogue to 2-deoxy[3H]glucose 6-phosphate, but this conversion is made only in the glial cells. Hence, glycolysis occurs only in glial cells. In contrast, the neurons consume O2 and this consumption is sustained by the hydrolysis of glycogen, which is contained in large amounts in the glia. During photostimulation the increased oxidative metabolism of the neurons is sustained by a higher supply of carbohydrates from the glia. This clear case of metabolic interaction between neurons and glial cells supports Golgi's original hypothesis, proposed nearly 100 years ago, about the nutritive function of glial cells in the nervous system.

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

    PubMed

    Tsacopoulos, M; Evêquoz-Mercier, V; Perrottet, P; Buchner, E

    1988-11-01

    The retina of the honeybee drone is a nervous tissue in which glial cells and photoreceptor cells (sensory neurons) constitute two distinct metabolic compartments. Retinal slices incubated with 2-deoxy[3H]glucose convert this glucose analogue to 2-deoxy[3H]glucose 6-phosphate, but this conversion is made only in the glial cells. Hence, glycolysis occurs only in glial cells. In contrast, the neurons consume O2 and this consumption is sustained by the hydrolysis of glycogen, which is contained in large amounts in the glia. During photostimulation the increased oxidative metabolism of the neurons is sustained by a higher supply of carbohydrates from the glia. This clear case of metabolic interaction between neurons and glial cells supports Golgi's original hypothesis, proposed nearly 100 years ago, about the nutritive function of glial cells in the nervous system.

  18. Laser surface treatment of porous ceramic substrate for application in solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahmod, D. S. A.; Khan, A. A.; Munot, M. A.; Glandut, N.; Labbe, J. C.

    2016-08-01

    Laser has offered a large number of benefits for surface treatment of ceramics due to possibility of localized heating, very high heating/cooling rates and possibility of growth of structural configurations only produced under non-equilibrium high temperature conditions. The present work investigates oxidation of porous ZrB2-SiC sintered ceramic substrates through treatment by a 1072 ± 10 nm ytterbium fiber laser. A multi-layer structure is hence produced showing successively oxygen rich distinct layers. The porous bulk beneath these layers remained unaffected as this laser-formed oxide scale and protected the substrate from oxidation. A glassy SiO2 structure thus obtained on the surface of the substrate becomes subject of interest for further research, specifically for its utilization as solid protonic conductor in Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SOFCs).

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-09-01

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

  20. Lactate is an alternative energy fuel to glucose in neurons under anesthesia.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Akifumi; Yamamoto, Keisuke; Imamoto, Natsumi; Momosaki, Sotaro; Hosoi, Rie; Yamaguchi, Masatoshi; Inoue, Osamu

    2009-11-25

    The uptake of [14C]lactate was measured in the brains of mice anesthetized with pentobarbital or chloral hydrate. The results showed significant increase of the [14C]lactate uptake in the brain under both anesthesia. Despite energy metabolism in the brain being suppressed by both pentobarbital and chloral hydrate, the [14C]lactate uptake was unexpectedly increased under anesthesia. [14C]Lactate uptake in rat brain injured by infusion of quinolic acid was significantly decreased, and the reduction of [14C]lactate uptake was parallel to neural cell death, suggesting that exogenous lactate might be selectively taken up by neuron. These results indicated that lactate rather than glucose might serve as an energy substrate for neuron in intact brain under anesthesia.

  1. Substrate specificity and kinetic parameters of GLUT3 in rat cerebellar granule neurons.

    PubMed Central

    Maher, F; Davies-Hill, T M; Simpson, I A

    1996-01-01

    This study examines the apparent affinity, catalytic-centre activity ("turnover number') and stereospecificity of the neuronal glucose transporter GLUT3 in primary cultured cerebellar granule neurons. Using a novel variation of the 3-O-[14C]methylglucose transport assay, by measuring zero-trans kinetics at 25 degrees C, GLUT3 was determined to be a high-apparent-affinity, high-activity, glucose transporter with a K(m) of 2.87 +/- 0.23 mM (mean +/- S.E.M.) for 3-O-methylglucose, a Vmax of 18.7 +/- 0.48 nmol/min per 10(6) cells, and cells, and a corresponding catalytic-centre activity of 853 s-1. Transport of 3-O-methylglucose was competed by glucose, mannose, 2-deoxyglucose and galactose, but not by fructose. This methodology is compared with the more common 2-[3H]deoxyglucose methodology and the [U-14C]-glucose transport method. The high affinity and transport activity of the neuronal glucose transporter GLUT3 appears to be an appropriate adaptation to meet the demands of neuronal metabolism at prevailing interstitial brain glucose concentrations (1-2 mM). PMID:8645164

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

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-04-01

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

  5. Carbon nanofibers modified graphite felt for high performance anode in high substrate concentration microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tice, Ryan C.; Kim, Younggy

    2014-12-01

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

  7. Age-related deficiencies in complex I endogenous substrate availability and reserve capacity of complex IV in cortical neuron electron transport

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Torrie T.; Brewer, Gregory J.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Respiratory enzyme complex dysfunction is mechanistically involved in mitochondrial failure leading to neurodegenerative disease, but the pathway is unclear. Here, age-related differences in mitochondrial respiration were measured in both whole and permeabilized neurons from 9-month and 24-month adult rat cortex cultured in common conditions. After permeabilization, respiration increased in both ages of neurons with excess substrates. To dissect specific deficiencies in the respiratory chain, inhibitors for each respiratory chain complex were used to isolate their contributions. Relative to neurons from 9-month rats, in neurons isolated from 24-month rats, complexes I, III, and IV were more sensitive to selective inhibition. Flux control point analysis identified complex I in neurons isolated from 24-month rats as the most sensitive to endogenous substrate availability. The greatest age-related deficit in flux capacity occurred at complex IV with a 29% decrease in neurons isolated from 24-month rats relative to those from 9-month rats. The deficits in complexes I and III may contribute to a redox shift in the quinone pool within the electron transport chain, further extending these age-related deficits. Together these changes could lead to an age-related catastrophic decline in energy production and neuronal death. PMID:19799853

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-01

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

  11. Acetate is a superior substrate for microbial fuel cell initiation preceding bioethanol effluent utilization.

    PubMed

    Sun, Guotao; Thygesen, Anders; Meyer, Anne S

    2015-06-01

    This study assessed cell voltage development, electricity recovery, and microbial community composition in response to initial substrate including acetate, xylose, acetate/xylose 1:1 mixture (ace/xyl), and bioethanol effluent (BE) during microbial fuel cell (MFC) operation at 1000 Ω external resistance. The BE mainly contained 20.5 g/L xylose, 1.8 g/L arabinose, and 2.5 g/L propionic acid. The MFCs initially fed with acetate showed shorter initiation time (1 day), higher average cell voltage (634 ± 9 mV), and higher coulombic efficiency (31.5 ± 0.5 %) than those initially fed with ace/xyl or xylose. However, BE-initiated MFCs only generated 162 ± 1 mV. The acetate-initiated MFCs exhibited longer adaptation time (21 h) and lower cell voltage (645 ± 10 mV) when the substrate was switched to xylose, whereas substrate switching to BE produced the highest voltage (656 mV), maximum power density (362 ± 27 mW/m(2)), maximum current density (709 ± 27 mA/m(2)), and coulombic efficiency (25 ± 0.5 %) in the acetate-initiated MFCs. The microbial community in acetate-initiated MFCs was less diverse and contained more electrogenic bacteria (13.9 ± 0.4 %) including Geobacter sulfurreducens and Desulfuromonas acetexigen than the MFCs initially fed with ace/xyl, xylose, and BE. After switching the substrate to xylose and subsequently to BE, the microbial community in the acetate-initiated MFCs became more diverse, while no significant changes were observed in ace/xyl-, xylose-, and BE-initiated MFCs. The results showed that initial substrate affected the power generation and the capability to adapt to the substrate alteration in MFCs. Acetate-initiated MFCs showed best performance in utilizing BE. PMID:25794875

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Mizuguchi, Nobuaki; Uehara, Shintaro; Hirose, Satoshi; Yamamoto, Shinji; Naito, Eiichi

    2016-01-01

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

  15. X MARCKS the spot: myristoylated alanine-rich C kinase substrate in neuronal function and disease

    PubMed Central

    Brudvig, Jon J.; Weimer, Jill M.

    2015-01-01

    Intracellular protein-protein interactions are dynamic events requiring tightly regulated spatial and temporal checkpoints. But how are these spatial and temporal cues integrated to produce highly specific molecular response patterns? A helpful analogy to this process is that of a cellular map, one based on the fleeting localization and activity of various coordinating proteins that direct a wide array of interactions between key molecules. One such protein, myristoylated alanine-rich C-kinase substrate (MARCKS) has recently emerged as an important component of this cellular map, governing a wide variety of protein interactions in every cell type within the brain. In addition to its well-documented interactions with the actin cytoskeleton, MARCKS has been found to interact with a number of other proteins involved in processes ranging from intracellular signaling to process outgrowth. Here, we will explore these diverse interactions and their role in an array of brain-specific functions that have important implications for many neurological conditions. PMID:26528135

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

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-01

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

  19. Energy substrate availability as a determinant of neuronal resting potential, GABA signaling and spontaneous network activity in the neonatal cortex in vitro.

    PubMed

    Holmgren, Carl D; Mukhtarov, Marat; Malkov, Anton E; Popova, Irina Y; Bregestovski, Piotr; Zilberter, Yuri

    2010-02-01

    While the ultimate dependence of brain function on its energy supply is evident, how basic neuronal parameters and network activity respond to energy metabolism deviations is unresolved. The resting membrane potential (E(m)) and reversal potential of GABA-induced anionic currents (E(GABA)) are among the most fundamental parameters controlling neuronal excitability. However, alterations of E(m) and E(GABA) under conditions of metabolic stress are not sufficiently documented, although it is well known that metabolic crisis may lead to neuronal hyper-excitability and aberrant neuronal network activities. In this work, we show that in slices, availability of energy substrates determines whether GABA signaling displays an inhibitory or excitatory mode, both in neonatal neocortex and hippocampus. We demonstrate that in the neonatal brain, E(m) and E(GABA) strongly depend on composition of the energy substrate pool. Complementing glucose with ketone bodies, pyruvate or lactate resulted in a significant hyperpolarization of both E(m) and E(GABA), and induced a radical shift in the mode of GABAergic synaptic transmission towards network inhibition. Generation of giant depolarizing potentials, currently regarded as the hallmark of spontaneous neonatal network activity in vitro, was strongly inhibited both in neocortex and hippocampus in the energy substrate enriched solution. Based on these results we suggest the composition of the artificial cerebrospinal fluid, which bears a closer resemblance to the in vivo energy substrate pool. Our results suggest that energy deficits induce unfavorable changes in E(m) and E(GABA), leading to neuronal hyperactivity that may initiate a cascade of pathological events.

  20. A model for the neuronal substrate of dead reckoning and memory in arthropods: a comparative computational and behavioral study.

    PubMed

    Bernardet, Ulysses; Bermúdez I Badia, Sergi; Verschure, Paul F M J

    2008-06-01

    Returning to the point of departure after exploring the environment is a key capability for most animals. In the absence of landmarks, this task will be solved by integrating direction and distance traveled over time. This is referred to as path integration or dead reckoning. An important question is how the nervous systems of navigating animals such as the 1 mm(3) brain of ants can integrate local information in order to make global decision. In this article we propose a neurobiologically plausible system of storing and retrieving direction and distance information. The path memory of our model builds on the well established concept of population codes, moreover our system does not rely on trigonometric functions or other complex non-linear operations such as multiplication, but only uses biologically plausible operations such as integration and thresholding. We test our model in two paradigms; in the first paradigm the system receives input from a simulated compass, in the second paradigm, the model is tested against behavioral data recorded from 17 ants. We were able to show that our path memory system was able to reliably encode and compute the angle of the vector pointing to the start location, and that the system stores the total length of the trajectory in a dependable way. From the structure and behavior of our model, we derive testable predictions both at the level of observable behavior as well as on the anatomy and physiology of its underlying neuronal substrate.

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

    PubMed

    Pascual, Florencia; Coleman, Rosalind A

    2016-10-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Pascual, Florencia; Coleman, Rosalind A

    2016-10-01

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

  3. Characterization of heme-deficient neuronal nitric-oxide synthase reveals a role for heme in subunit dimerization and binding of the amino acid substrate and tetrahydrobiopterin.

    PubMed

    Klatt, P; Pfeiffer, S; List, B M; Lehner, D; Glatter, O; Bächinger, H P; Werner, E R; Schmidt, K; Mayer, B

    1996-03-29

    Neuronal nitric-oxide (NO) synthase contains FAD, FMN, heme, and tetrahydrobiopterin as prosthetic groups and represents a multifunctional oxidoreductase catalyzing oxidation of L-arginine to L-citrulline and NO, reduction of molecular oxygen to superoxide, and electron transfer to cytochromes. To investigate how binding of the prosthetic heme moiety is related to enzyme activities, cofactor, and L-arginine binding, as well as to secondary and quaternary protein structure, we have purified and characterized heme-deficient neuronal NO synthase. The heme-deficient enzyme, which had preserved its cytochrome c reductase activity, contained FAD and FMN, but virtually no tetrahydrobiopterin, and exhibited only marginal NO synthase activity. By means of gel filtration and static light scattering, we demonstrate that the heme-deficient enzyme is a monomer and provide evidence that heme is the sole prosthetic group controlling the quaternary structure of neuronal NO synthase. CD spectroscopy showed that most of the structural elements found in the dimeric holoenzyme were conserved in heme-deficient monomeric NO synthase. However, in spite of being properly folded, the heme-deficient enzyme did bind neither tetrahydrobiopterin nor the substrate analog N(G)-nitro-L-arginine. Our results demonstrate that the prosthetic heme group of neuronal NO synthase is requisite for dimerization of enzyme subunits and for the binding of amino acid substrate and tetrahydrobiopterin.

  4. Glial cells transform glucose to alanine, which fuels the neurons in the honeybee retina.

    PubMed

    Tsacopoulos, M; Veuthey, A L; Saravelos, S G; Perrottet, P; Tsoupras, G

    1994-03-01

    The retina of honeybee drone is a nervous tissue with a crystal-like structure in which glial cells and photoreceptor neurons constitute two distinct metabolic compartments. The phosphorylation of glucose and its subsequent incorporation into glycogen occur in glia, whereas O2 consumption (QO2) occurs in the photoreceptors. Experimental evidence showed that glia phosphorylate glucose and supply the photoreceptors with metabolic substrates. We aimed to identify these transferred substrates. Using ion-exchange and reversed-phase HPLC and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, we demonstrated that more than 50% of 14C(U)-glucose entering the glia is transformed to alanine by transamination of pyruvate with glutamate. In the absence of extracellular glucose, glycogen is used to make alanine; thus, its pool size in isolated retinas is maintained stable or even increased. Our model proposes that the formation of alanine occurs in the glia, thereby maintaining the redox potential of this cell and contributing to NH3 homeostasis. Alanine is released into the extracellular space and is then transported into photoreceptors using an Na(+)-dependent transport system. Purified suspensions of photoreceptors have similar alanine aminotransferase activity as glial cells and transform 14C-alanine to glutamate, aspartate, and CO2. Therefore, the alanine entering photoreceptors is transaminated to pyruvate, which in turn enters the Krebs cycle. Proline also supplies the Krebs cycle by making glutamate and, in turn, the intermediate alpha-ketoglutarate. Light stimulation caused a 200% increase of QO2 and a 50% decrease of proline and of glutamate. Also, the production of 14CO2 from 14C-proline was increased. The use of these amino acids would sustain about half of the light-induced delta QO2, the other half being sustained by glycogen via alanine formation. The use of proline meets a necessary anaplerotic function in the Krebs cycle, but implies high NH3 production. The results showed

  5. Long-term culture of pluripotent stem-cell-derived human neurons on diamond--A substrate for neurodegeneration research and therapy.

    PubMed

    Nistor, Paul A; May, Paul W; Tamagnini, Francesco; Randall, Andrew D; Caldwell, Maeve A

    2015-08-01

    Brain Computer Interfaces (BCI) currently represent a field of intense research aimed both at understanding neural circuit physiology and at providing functional therapy for traumatic or degenerative neurological conditions. Due to its chemical inertness, biocompatibility and stability, diamond is currently being actively investigated as a potential substrate material for culturing cells and for use as the electrically active component of a neural sensor. Here we provide a protocol for the differentiation of mature, electrically active neurons on microcrystalline synthetic thin-film diamond substrates starting from undifferentiated pluripotent stem cells. Furthermore, we investigate the optimal characteristics of the diamond microstructure for long-term neuronal sustainability. We also analyze the effect of boron as a dopant for such a culture. We found that the diamond crystalline structure has a significant influence on the neuronal culture unlike the boron doping. Specifically, small diamond microcrystals promote higher neurite density formation. We find that boron incorporated into the diamond does not influence the neurite density and has no deleterious effect on cell survival.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-17

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2015-01-15

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

  12. Simultaneous sulfide removal and electricity generation with corn stover biomass as co-substrate in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jing; Zhang, Baogang; Tian, Caixing; Ye, Zhengfang; Liu, Ye; Lei, Zhongfang; Huang, Wenli; Feng, Chuanping

    2013-06-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs), representing a promising method to treat combined pollutants with energy recovery, were utilized to remove sulfide and recover power with corn stover filtrate (CSF) as the co-substrate in present study. A maximum power density of 744 mW/m(2) was achieved with sulfide removal of 91% during 72 h operation when the CSF concentrations (mg-COD/l) and the electrolyte conductivity were set at 800 mg/l and 10.06 mS/cm, respectively, while almost 52% COD was removed due to the microbial degradation of CSF to the volatile organic carbons. CSF concentrations and electrolyte conductivities had significant effects on the performance of the MFCs. Simultaneous removals of inorganic pollutant and complex organic compounds with electricity generation in MFCs are reported for the first time. These results provide a good reference for multiple contaminations treatment especially sulfide containing wastewaters based on the MFC technology.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  15. Comparing the effects of various fuel alcohols on the natural attenuation of Benzene Plumes using a general substrate interaction model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gomez, Diego E.; Alvarez, Pedro J. J.

    2010-04-01

    The effects of five fuel alcohols (methanol, ethanol, 1-propanol, iso-butanol and n-butanol) on the natural attenuation of benzene were compared using a previously developed numerical model (General Substrate Interaction Module — GSIM) and a probabilistic sensitivity analysis. Simulations with a 30 gal dissolving LNAPL (light non-aqueous phase liquid) source consisting of a range of gasoline blends (10% and 85% v:v alcohol content) suggest that all fuel alcohols can hinder the natural attenuation of benzene, due mainly to accelerated depletion of dissolved oxygen and a decrease in the specific degradation rate for benzene (due to catabolite repression and metabolic flux dilution). Simulations for blends with 10% alcohol, assuming a homogeneous sandy aquifer, inferred maximum benzene plume elongations (relative to a regular gasoline release) of 26% for ethanol, 47% for iso-butanol, 147% for methanol, 188% for 1-propanol, and 265% for n-butanol. The corresponding elongation percentages for blends with 85% alcohol were generally smaller (i.e., 25%, 54%, 135%, 163%, and 181%, respectively), reflecting a lower content of benzene in the simulated release. Benzene plume elongation and longevity were more pronounced in the presence of alcohols that biodegrade slower (e.g., propanol and n-butanol), forming longer and more persistent alcohol plumes. Conversely, ethanol and iso-butanol exhibited the lowest potential to hinder the natural attenuation of benzene, illustrating the significant effect that a small difference in chemical structure (e.g., isomers) can have on biodegradation. Overall, simulations were highly sensitive to site-specific biokinetic coefficients for alcohol degradation, which forewarns against generalizations about the level of impact of specific fuel alcohols on benzene plume dynamics.

  16. Engineered N-cadherin and L1 biomimetic substrates concertedly promote neuronal differentiation, neurite extension and neuroprotection of human neural stem cells.

    PubMed

    Cherry, Jocie F; Bennett, Neal K; Schachner, Melitta; Moghe, Prabhas V

    2014-10-01

    We investigated the design of neurotrophic biomaterial constructs for human neural stem cells, guided by neural developmental cues of N-cadherin and L1 adhesion molecules. Polymer substrates fabricated either as two-dimensional (2-D) films or three-dimensional (3-D) microfibrous scaffolds were functionalized with fusion chimeras of N-cadherin-Fc alone and in combination with L1-Fc, and the effects on differentiation, neurite extension and survival of H9 human-embryonic-stem-cell-derived neural stem cells (H9-NSCs) were quantified. Combinations of N-cadherin and L1-Fc co-operatively enhanced neuronal differentiation profiles, indicating the critical nature of the two complementary developmental cues. Notably, substrates presenting low levels of N-cadherin-Fc concentrations, combined with proportionately higher L1-Fc concentration, most enhanced neurite outgrowth and the degree of MAP2+ and neurofilament-M+ H9-NSCs. Low N-cadherin-Fc alone promoted improved cell survival following oxidative stress, compared to higher concentrations of N-cadherin-Fc alone or combinations with L1-Fc. Pharmacological and antibody blockage studies revealed that substrates presenting low levels of N-cadherin are functionally competent so long as they elicit a threshold signal mediated by homophilic N-cadherin and fibroblast growth factor signaling. Overall, these studies highlight the ability of optimal combinations of N-cadherin and L1 to recapitulate a "neurotrophic" microenvironment that enhances human neural stem cell differentiation and neurite outgrowth. Additionally, 3-D fibrous scaffolds presenting low N-cadherin-Fc further enhanced the survival of H9-NSCs compared to equivalent 2-D films. This indicates that similar biofunctionalization approaches based on N-cadherin and L1 can be translated to 3-D "transplantable" scaffolds with enhanced neurotrophic behaviors. Thus, the insights from this study have fundamental and translational impacts for neural-stem-cell-based regenerative

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  19. Measurements of substrate oxidation using (13)CO 2-breath testing reveals shifts in fuel mix during starvation.

    PubMed

    McCue, Marshall D; Pollock, Erik D

    2013-12-01

    Most fasting animals are believed to sequentially switch from predominantly utilizing one metabolic substrate to another from carbohydrates, to lipids, then to proteins. The timing of these physiological transitions has been estimated using measures of substrate oxidation including changes in respiratory exchange ratios, blood metabolites, nitrogen excretion, or enzyme activities in tissues. Here, we demonstrate how (13)CO2-breath testing can be used to partition among the oxidation of distinct nutrient pools in the body (i.e., carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins) that have become artificially enriched in (13)C. Seventy-two Swiss Webster mice were raised to adulthood on diets supplemented with (13)C-1-L-leucine, (13)C-1-palmitic acid, (13)C-1-D-glucose, or no tracer. Mice were then fasted for 72 h during which [Formula: see text], [Formula: see text], δ(13)C of exhaled CO2, body temperature, body mass, and blood metabolites (i.e., glucose, ketone bodies, and triacylglycerols) were measured. The fasting mice exhibited reductions in body mass (29 %), body temperature (3.3 °C), minimum observed metabolic rates (24 %), and respiratory exchange ratio (0.18), as well as significant changes in blood metabolites; but these responses were not particularly indicative of changes in oxidative fuel mixture. Measurements of endogenous nutrient oxidation by way of (13)CO2-breath testing revealed a decrease in the rate of oxidation of carbohydrates from 61 to 10 % of the total energy expenditure during the first 6 h without food. This response was mirrored by a coincidental increase in rate of endogenous lipid oxidation from 18 to 64 %. A transient peak in carbohydrate oxidation occurred between 8 and 14 h, presumably during increased glycogen mobilization. A well-defined period of protein sparing between 8 and 12 h was observed where endogenous protein oxidation accounted for as little as 8 % of the total energy expenditure. Thereafter, protein oxidation continually

  20. Evaluation of Silicon Nitride as a Substrate for Culture of PC12 Cells: An Interfacial Model for Functional Studies in Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Medina Benavente, Johan Jaime; Mogami, Hideo; Sakurai, Takashi; Sawada, Kazuaki

    2014-01-01

    Silicon nitride is a biocompatible material that is currently used as an interfacial surface between cells and large-scale integration devices incorporating ion-sensitive field-effect transistor technology. Here, we investigated whether a poly-L-lysine coated silicon nitride surface is suitable for the culture of PC12 cells, which are widely used as a model for neural differentiation, and we characterized their interaction based on cell behavior when seeded on the tested material. The coated surface was first examined in terms of wettability and topography using contact angle measurements and atomic force microscopy and then, conditioned silicon nitride surface was used as the substrate for the study of PC12 cell culture properties. We found that coating silicon nitride with poly-L-lysine increased surface hydrophilicity and that exposing this coated surface to an extracellular aqueous environment gradually decreased its roughness. When PC12 cells were cultured on a coated silicon nitride surface, adhesion and spreading were facilitated, and the cells showed enhanced morphological differentiation compared to those cultured on a plastic culture dish. A bromodeoxyuridine assay demonstrated that, on the coated silicon nitride surface, higher proportions of cells left the cell cycle, remained in a quiescent state and had longer survival times. Therefore, our study of the interaction of the silicon nitride surface with PC12 cells provides important information for the production of devices that need to have optimal cell culture-supporting properties in order to be used in the study of neuronal functions. PMID:24587271

  1. Substrate removal and electricity generation in a membrane-less microbial fuel cell for biological treatment of wastewater.

    PubMed

    Wang, Haiping; Jiang, Sunny C; Wang, Yun; Xiao, Bo

    2013-06-01

    Microbial fuel cells have gained popularity in recent years due to its promise in converting organic wastewater into renewable electrical energy. In this study, a membrane-less MFC with a biocathode was developed to evaluate its performance in electricity generation while simultaneously treating wastewater. The MFC fed with a continuous flow of 2g/day acetate produced a power density of 30 mW/m(2) and current density of 245 mA/m(2). A substrate degradation efficiency (SDE) of 75.9% was achieved with 48.7% attributed to the anaerobic process and 27.2% to the aerobic process. Sequencing analysis of the microbial consortia using 16S rDNA pryosequencing showed the predominance of Bacteroidia in the anode after one month of operation, while the microbial community in the cathode chamber was dominated by Gamma-proteobacteria and Beta-proteobacteria. Coulombic efficiencies varied from 19.8% to 58.1% using different acetate concentrations, indicating power density can be further improved through the accumulation of electron-transferring bacteria.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-11

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

  3. [Mirror neurons].

    PubMed

    Rubia Vila, Francisco José

    2011-01-01

    Mirror neurons were recently discovered in frontal brain areas of the monkey. They are activated when the animal makes a specific movement, but also when the animal observes the same movement in another animal. Some of them also respond to the emotional expression of other animals of the same species. These mirror neurons have also been found in humans. They respond to or "reflect" actions of other individuals in the brain and are thought to represent the basis for imitation and empathy and hence the neurobiological substrate for "theory of mind", the potential origin of language and the so-called moral instinct.

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

    PubMed Central

    Lutas, Andrew; Birnbaumer, Lutz

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

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

  6. Pt skin on AuCu intermetallic substrate: a strategy to maximize Pt utilization for fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Gongwei; Huang, Bing; Xiao, Li; Ren, Zhandong; Chen, Hao; Wang, Deli; Abruña, Héctor D; Lu, Juntao; Zhuang, Lin

    2014-07-01

    The dependence on Pt catalysts has been a major issue of proton-exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells. Strategies to maximize the Pt utilization in catalysts include two main approaches: to put Pt atoms only at the catalyst surface and to further enhance the surface-specific catalytic activity (SA) of Pt. Thus far there has been no practical design that combines these two features into one single catalyst. Here we report a combined computational and experimental study on the design and implementation of Pt-skin catalysts with significantly improved SA toward the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). Through screening, using density functional theory (DFT) calculations, a Pt-skin structure on AuCu(111) substrate, consisting of 1.5 monolayers of Pt, is found to have an appropriately weakened oxygen affinity, in comparison to that on Pt(111), which would be ideal for ORR catalysis. Such a structure is then realized by substituting the Cu atoms in three surface layers of AuCu intermetallic nanoparticles (AuCu iNPs) with Pt. The resulting Pt-skinned catalyst (denoted as Pt(S)AuCu iNPs) has been characterized in depth using synchrotron XRD, XPS, HRTEM, and HAADF-STEM/EDX, such that the Pt-skin structure is unambiguously identified. The thickness of the Pt skin was determined to be less than two atomic layers. Finally the catalytic activity of Pt(S)AuCu iNPs toward the ORR was measured via rotating disk electrode (RDE) voltammetry through which it was established that the SA was more than 2 times that of a commercial Pt/C catalyst. Taking into account the ultralow Pt loading in Pt(S)AuCu iNPs, the mass-specific catalytic activity (MA) was determined to be 0.56 A/mg(Pt)@0.9 V, a value that is well beyond the DOE 2017 target for ORR catalysts (0.44 A/mg(Pt)@0.9 V). These findings provide a strategic design and a realizable approach to high-performance and Pt-efficient catalysts for fuel cells.

  7. Immunohistochemical localization of transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 and insulin receptor substrate 2 and their co-localization with liver-related neurons in the hypothalamus and brainstem

    PubMed Central

    Zsombok, Andrea; Gao, Hong; Miyata, Kayoko; Issa, Alexandra; Derbenev, Andrei V.

    2011-01-01

    The central nervous system plays an important role in the regulation of energy balance and glucose homeostasis mainly via controlling the autonomic output to the visceral organs. The autonomic output is regulated by hormones and nutrients to maintain adequate energy and glucose homeostasis. Insulin action is mediated via insulin receptors (IR) resulting in phosphorylation of insulin receptor substrates (IRS) inducing activation of downstream pathways. Furthermore, insulin enhances transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) mediated currents. Activation of the TRPV1 receptor increases excitatory neurotransmitter release in autonomic centers of the brain, thereby impacting energy and glucose homeostasis. The aim of this study is to determine co-expression of IRS2 and TRPV1 receptors in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) and dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV) in the mouse brain as well as expression of IRS2 and TRPV1 receptors at liver-related preautonomic neurons pre-labeled with a trans-neural, viral tracer (PRV-152). The data indicate that IRS2 and TRPV1 receptors are present and co-express in the PVN and the DMV. A large portion (over 50%) of the liver-related preautonomic DMV and PVN neurons expresses IRS2. Moreover, the majority of liver-related DMV and PVN neurons also express TRPV1 receptors, suggesting that insulin and TRPV1 actions may affect liver-related preautonomic neurons. PMID:21620379

  8. Critical State of Energy Metabolism in Brain Slices: The Principal Role of Oxygen Delivery and Energy Substrates in Shaping Neuronal Activity

    PubMed Central

    Ivanov, Anton; Zilberter, Yuri

    2011-01-01

    The interactive vasculo-neuro-glial system controlling energy supply in the brain is absent in vitro where energy provision is determined by experimental conditions. Despite the fact that neuronal activity is extremely energy demanding, little has been reported on the state of energy metabolism in submerged brain slices. Without this information, the arbitrarily chosen oxygenation and metabolic provisions make questionable the efficient oxidative metabolism in slices. We show that in mouse hippocampal slices (postnatal day 19–44), evoked neuronal discharges, spontaneous network activity (initiated by 4-aminopyridine), and synaptic stimulation-induced NAD(P)H autofluorescence depend strongly on the oxygen availability. Only the rate of perfusion as high as ~15 ml/min (95% O2) provided appropriate oxygenation of a slice. Lower oxygenation resulted in the decrease of both local field potentials and spontaneous network activity as well as in significant modulation of short-term synaptic plasticity. The reduced oxygen supply considerably inhibited the oxidation phase of NAD(P)H signaling indicating that the changes in neuronal activity were paralleled by the decrease in aerobic energy metabolism. Interestingly, the dependence of neuronal activity on oxygen tension was clearly shifted toward considerably larger pO2 values in slices when compared to in vivo conditions. With sufficient pO2 provided by a high perfusion rate, partial substitution of glucose in ACSF for β-hydroxybutyrate, pyruvate, or lactate enhanced both oxidative metabolism and synaptic function. This suggests that the high pO2 in brain slices is compulsory for maintaining oxidative metabolism, and glucose alone is not sufficient in fulfilling energy requirements during neuronal activity. Altogether, our results demonstrate that energy metabolism determines the functional state of neuronal network, highlighting the need for the adequate metabolic support to be insured in the in vitro experiments. PMID

  9. Neurochemical pathways that converge on thalamic trigeminovascular neurons: potential substrate for modulation of migraine by sleep, food intake, stress and anxiety.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  11. Interactions of neurons with topographic nano cues affect branching morphology mimicking neuron-neuron interactions.

    PubMed

    Baranes, Koby; Kollmar, Davida; Chejanovsky, Nathan; Sharoni, Amos; Shefi, Orit

    2012-08-01

    We study the effect of topographic nano-cues on neuronal growth-morphology using invertebrate neurons in culture. We use photolithography to fabricate substrates with repeatable line-pattern ridges of nano-scale heights of 10-150 nm. We plate leech neurons atop the patterned-substrates and compare their growth pattern to neurons plated atop non-patterned substrates. The model system allows us the analysis of single neurite-single ridge interactions. The use of high resolution electron microscopy reveals small filopodia processes that attach to the line-pattern ridges. These fine processes, that cannot be detected in light microscopy, add anchoring sites onto the side of the ridges, thus additional physical support. These interactions of the neuronal process dominantly affect the neuronal growth direction. We analyze the response of the entire neuronal branching tree to the patterned substrates and find significant effect on the growth patterns compared to non-patterned substrates. Moreover, interactions with the nano-cues trigger a growth strategy similarly to interactions with other neuronal cells, as reflected in their morphometric parameters. The number of branches and the number of neurites originating from the soma decrease following the interaction demonstrating a tendency to a more simplified neuronal branching tree. The effect of the nano-cues on the neuronal function deserves further investigation and will strengthen our understanding of the interplay between function and form.

  12. Acylcarnitines as markers of exercise-associated fuel partitioning, xenometabolism, and potential signals to muscle afferent neurons

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    With insulin-resistance or type 2 diabetes mellitus, mismatches between mitochondrial fatty acid fuel delivery and oxidative phosphorylation/tricarboxylic acid cycle activity may contribute to inordinate accumulation of short- or medium-chain acylcarnitine fatty acid derivatives (markers of incomple...

  13. YqhD: a broad-substrate range aldehyde reductase with various applications in production of biorenewable fuels and chemicals.

    PubMed

    Jarboe, Laura R

    2011-01-01

    The Escherichia coli NADPH-dependent aldehyde reductase YqhD has contributed to a variety of metabolic engineering projects for production of biorenewable fuels and chemicals. As a scavenger of toxic aldehydes produced by lipid peroxidation, YqhD has reductase activity for a broad range of short-chain aldehydes, including butyraldehyde, glyceraldehyde, malondialdehyde, isobutyraldehyde, methylglyoxal, propanealdehyde, acrolein, furfural, glyoxal, 3-hydroxypropionaldehyde, glycolaldehyde, acetaldehyde, and acetol. This reductase activity has proven useful for the production of biorenewable fuels and chemicals, such as isobutanol and 1,3- and 1,2-propanediol; additional capability exists for production of 1-butanol, 1-propanol, and allyl alcohol. A drawback of this reductase activity is the diversion of valuable NADPH away from biosynthesis. This YqhD-mediated NADPH depletion provides sufficient burden to contribute to growth inhibition by furfural and 5-hydroxymethyl furfural, inhibitory contaminants of biomass hydrolysate. The structure of YqhD has been characterized, with identification of a Zn atom in the active site. Directed engineering efforts have improved utilization of 3-hydroxypropionaldehyde and NADPH. Most recently, two independent projects have demonstrated regulation of yqhD by YqhC, where YqhC appears to function as an aldehyde sensor.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-01

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

  16. Structures of asymmetric complexes of human neuron specific enolase with resolved substrate and product and an analogous complex with two inhibitors indicate subunit interaction and inhibitor cooperativity.

    PubMed

    Qin, Jie; Chai, Geqing; Brewer, John M; Lovelace, Leslie L; Lebioda, Lukasz

    2012-06-01

    In the presence of magnesium, enolase catalyzes the dehydration of 2-phospho-d-glycerate (PGA) to phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP) in glycolysis and the reverse reaction in gluconeogensis at comparable rates. The structure of human neuron specific enolase (hNSE) crystals soaked in PGA showed that the enzyme is active in the crystals and produced PEP; conversely soaking in PEP produced PGA. Moreover, the hNSE dimer contains PGA bound in one subunit and PEP or a mixture of PEP and PGA in the other. Crystals soaked in a mixture of competitive inhibitors tartronate semialdehyde phosphate (TSP) and lactic acid phosphate (LAP) showed asymmetry with TSP binding in the same site as PGA and LAP in the PEP site. Kinetic studies showed that the inhibition of NSE by mixtures of TSP and LAP is stronger than predicted for independently acting inhibitors. This indicates that in some cases inhibition of homodimeric enzymes by mixtures of inhibitors ("heteroinhibition") may offer advantages over single inhibitors.

  17. Ca(v)3.2 channel is a molecular substrate for inhibition of T-type calcium currents in rat sensory neurons by nitrous oxide.

    PubMed

    Todorovic, S M; Jevtovic-Todorovic, V; Mennerick, S; Perez-Reyes, E; Zorumski, C F

    2001-09-01

    Although nitrous oxide (N(2)O; laughing gas) remains widely used as an anesthetic and analgesic in clinical practice, its cellular mechanisms of action remain inadequately understood. In this report, we examined the effects of N(2)O on voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels in acutely dissociated small sensory neurons of adult rat. At subanesthetic concentrations, N(2)O blocks low-voltage-activated, T-type Ca(2+) currents (T currents), but not high-voltage-activated (HVA) currents. This blockade of T currents was concentration dependent, with an IC(50) value of 45 +/- 13%, maximal block of 38 +/- 12%, and Hill coefficient of 2.6 +/- 1.0. No desensitization of the response or change in current kinetics was observed during N(2)O application. The magnitude of T current blockade by N(2)O does not seem to reflect any use- or voltage-dependent properties. In addition, T current blockade was not altered when intracellular GTP was replaced with guanosine 5'-(gamma-thio)triphosphate or guanosine 5'-0-(2-thiodiphosphate) suggesting a lack of involvement of G-proteins in the inhibition. N(2)O selectively blocked currents arising from the Ca(v)3.2 but not Ca(v)3.1 recombinant channels stably expressed in human embryonic kidney (HEK) cells in a concentration-dependent manner with an apparent affinity and potency similar to native dorsal root ganglion currents. Analogously, the block of Ca(v)3.2 T currents exhibited little voltage- or use-dependence. These data indicate that N(2)O selectively blocks T-type but not HVA Ca(2+) currents in small sensory neurons and Ca(v)3.2 currents in HEK cells at subanesthetic concentrations. Blockade of T currents may contribute to the anesthetic and/or analgesic effects of N(2)O. PMID:11502893

  18. Metabolic modeling of spatial heterogeneity of biofilms in microbial fuel cells reveals substrate limitations in electrical current generation.

    PubMed

    Jayasinghe, Nadeera; Franks, Ashley; Nevin, Kelly P; Mahadevan, Radhakrishnan

    2014-10-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) have been proposed as an alternative energy resource for the conversion of organic compounds to electricity. In an MFC, microorganisms such as Geobacter sulfurreducens form an anode-associated biofilm that can completely oxidize organic matter (electron donor) to carbon dioxide with direct electron transfer to the anode (electron acceptor). Mathematical models are useful in analyzing biofilm processes; however, existing models rely on Nernst-Monod type expressions, and evaluate extracellular processes separated from the intracellular metabolism of the microorganism. Thus, models that combine both extracellular and intracellular components, while addressing spatial heterogeneity, are essential for improved representation of biofilm processes. The goal of this work is to develop a model that integrates genome-scale metabolic models with the model of biofilm environment. This integrated model shows the variations of electrical current production and biofilm thickness under the presence/absence of NH4 in the bulk solution, and under varying maintenance energy demands. Further, sensitivity analysis suggested that conductivity is not limiting electrical current generation and that increasing cell density can lead to enhanced current generation. In addition, the modeling results also highlight instances such as the transformation into respiring cells, where the mechanism of electrical current generation during biofilm development is not yet clearly understood.

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

    PubMed

    Nehlig, Astrid; Coles, Jonathan A

    2007-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Nehlig, Astrid; Coles, Jonathan A

    2007-09-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-09-01

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

  2. Vestibular Neuronitis

    MedlinePlus

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

  3. Neuroanatomical approaches of the tectum-reticular pathways and immunohistochemical evidence for serotonin-positive perikarya on neuronal substrates of the superior colliculus and periaqueductal gray matter involved in the elaboration of the defensive behavior and fear-induced analgesia.

    PubMed

    Coimbra, N C; De Oliveira, R; Freitas, R L; Ribeiro, S J; Borelli, K G; Pacagnella, R C; Moreira, J E; da Silva, L A; Melo, L L; Lunardi, L O; Brandão, M L

    2006-01-01

    Deep layers of the superior colliculus, the dorsal periaqueductal gray matter and the inferior colliculus are midbrain structures involved in the generation of defensive behavior and fear-induced anti-nociception. Local injections of the GABA(A) antagonist bicuculline into these structures have been used to produce this defense reaction. Serotonin is thought to be the main neurotransmitter to modulate such defense reaction in mammals. This study is the first attempt to employ immunohistochemical techniques to locate serotonergic cells in the same midbrain sites from where defense reaction is evoked by chemical stimulation with bicuculline. The blockade of GABA(A) receptors in the neural substrates of the dorsal mesencephalon was followed by vigorous defensive reactions and increased nociceptive thresholds. Light microscopy immunocytochemistry with streptavidin method was used for the localization of the putative cells of defensive behavior with antibodies to serotonin in the rat's midbrain. Neurons positive to serotonin were found in the midbrain sites where defensive reactions were evoked by microinjection of bicuculline. Serotonin was localized to somata and projections of the neural networks of the mesencephalic tectum. Immunohistochemical studies showed that the sites in which neuronal perikarya positive to serotonin were identified in intermediate and deep layers of the superior colliculus, and in the dorsal and ventral columns of the periaqueductal gray matter are the same which were activated during the generation of defense behaviors, such as alertness, freezing, and escape reactions, induced by bicuculline. These findings support the contention that serotonin and GABAergic neurons may act in concert in the modulation of defense reaction in the midbrain tectum. Our neuroanatomical findings indicate a direct neural pathway connecting the dorsal midbrain and monoaminergic nuclei of the descending pain inhibitory system, with profuse synaptic terminals mainly

  4. Neuronal beacon.

    PubMed

    Black, B; Mondal, A; Kim, Y; Mohanty, S K

    2013-07-01

    The controlled navigation of the axonal growth cone of a neuron toward the dendrite of its synaptic partner neuron is the fundamental process in forming neuronal circuitry. While a number of technologies have been pursued for axonal guidance over the past decades, they are either invasive or not controllable with high spatial and temporal resolution and are often limited by low guidance efficacy. Here, we report a neuronal beacon based on light for highly efficient and controlled guidance of cortical primary neurons.

  5. Oxygen consumption rates in hovering hummingbirds reflect substrate-dependent differences in P/O ratios: carbohydrate as a 'premium fuel'.

    PubMed

    Welch, Kenneth C; Altshuler, Douglas L; Suarez, Raul K

    2007-06-01

    The stoichiometric relationship of ATP production to oxygen consumption, i.e. the P/O ratio, varies depending on the nature of the metabolic substrate used. The latest estimates reveal a P/O ratio approximately 15% higher when glucose is oxidized compared with fatty acid oxidation. Because the energy required to produce aerodynamic lift for hovering is independent of the metabolic fuel oxidized, we hypothesized that the rate of oxygen consumption, VO2, should decline as the respiratory quotient, RQ (VCO2/VO2), increases from 0.71 to 1.0 as hummingbirds transition from a fasted to a fed state. Here, we show that hovering VO2 values in rufous (Selasphorus rufus) and Anna's hummingbirds (Calypte anna) are significantly greater when fats are metabolized (RQ=0.71) than when carbohydrates are used (RQ=1.0). Because hummingbirds gained mass during our experiments, making mass a confounding variable, we estimated VO2 per unit mechanical power output. Expressed in this way, the difference in VO2 when hummingbirds display an RQ=0.71 (fasted) and an RQ=1.0 (fed) is between 16 and 18%, depending on whether zero or perfect elastic energy storage is assumed. These values closely match theoretical expectations, indicating that a combination of mechanical power estimates and ;indirect calorimetry', i.e. the measurement of rates of gas exchange, enables precise estimates of ATP turnover and metabolic flux rates in vivo. The requirement for less oxygen when oxidizing carbohydrate suggests that carbohydrate oxidation may facilitate hovering flight in hummingbirds at high altitude.

  6. Neuronal migration on laminin in vitro.

    PubMed

    Liang, S; Crutcher, K A

    1992-03-20

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

  7. Neuronal migration on laminin in vitro.

    PubMed

    Liang, S; Crutcher, K A

    1992-03-20

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

  8. Stable isotope-resolved metabolomic analysis of lithium effects on glial-neuronal metabolism and interactions.

    PubMed

    Fan, Teresa W-M; Yuan, Peixiong; Lane, Andrew N; Higashi, Richard M; Wang, Yun; Hamidi, Anahita B; Zhou, Rulun; Guitart, Xavier; Chen, Guang; Manji, Husseini K; Kaddurah-Daouk, Rima

    2010-06-01

    Despite the long-established therapeutic efficacy of lithium in the treatment of bipolar disorder (BPD), its molecular mechanism of action remains elusive. Newly developed stable isotope-resolved metabolomics (SIRM) is a powerful approach that can be used to elucidate systematically how lithium impacts glial and neuronal metabolic pathways and activities, leading ultimately to deciphering its molecular mechanism of action. The effect of lithium on the metabolism of three different (13)C-labeled precursors ([U-(13)C]-glucose, (13)C-3-lactate or (13)C-2,3-alanine) was analyzed in cultured rat astrocytes and neurons by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Using [U-(13)C]-glucose, lithium was shown to enhance glycolytic activity and part of the Krebs cycle activity in both astrocytes and neurons, particularly the anaplerotic pyruvate carboxylation (PC). The PC pathway was previously thought to be active in astrocytes but absent in neurons. Lithium also stimulated the extracellular release of (13)C labeled-lactate, -alanine (Ala), -citrate, and -glutamine (Gln) by astrocytes. Interrogation of neuronal pathways using (13)C-3-lactate or (13)C-2,3-Ala as tracers indicated a high capacity of neurons to utilize lactate and Ala in the Krebs cycle, particularly in the production of labeled Asp and Glu via PC and normal cycle activity. Prolonged lithium treatment enhanced lactate metabolism via PC but inhibited lactate oxidation via the normal Krebs cycle in neurons. Such lithium modulation of glycolytic, PC and Krebs cycle activity in astrocytes and neurons as well as release of fuel substrates by astrocytes should help replenish Krebs cycle substrates for Glu synthesis while meeting neuronal demands for energy. Further investigations into the molecular regulation of these metabolic traits should provide new insights into the pathophysiology of mood disorders and early diagnostic markers, as well as new target(s) for

  9. Dynamic imaging of free cytosolic ATP concentration during fuel sensing by rat hypothalamic neurones: evidence for ATP-independent control of ATP-sensitive K(+) channels.

    PubMed

    Ainscow, Edward K; Mirshamsi, Shirin; Tang, Teresa; Ashford, Michael L J; Rutter, Guy A

    2002-10-15

    Glucose-responsive (GR) neurons from hypothalamic nuclei are implicated in the regulation of feeding and satiety. To determine the role of intracellular ATP in the closure of ATP-sensitive K(+) (K(ATP)) channels in these cells and associated glia, the cytosolic ATP concentration ([ATP](c)) was monitored in vivo using adenoviral-driven expression of recombinant targeted luciferases and bioluminescence imaging. Arguing against a role for ATP in the closure of K(ATP) channels in GR neurons, glucose (3 or 15 mM) caused no detectable increase in [ATP](c), monitored with cytosolic luciferase, and only a small decrease in the concentration of ATP immediately beneath the plasma membrane, monitored with a SNAP25-luciferase fusion protein. In contrast to hypothalamic neurons, hypothalamic glia responded to glucose (3 and 15 mM) with a significant increase in [ATP](c). Both neurons and glia from the cerebellum, a glucose-unresponsive region of the brain, responded robustly to 3 or 15 mM glucose with increases in [ATP](c). Further implicating an ATP-independent mechanism of K(ATP) channel closure in hypothalamic neurons, removal of extracellular glucose (10 mM) suppressed the electrical activity of GR neurons in the presence of a fixed, high concentration (3 mM) of intracellular ATP. Neurons from both brain regions responded to 5 mM lactate (but not pyruvate) with an oligomycin-sensitive increase in [ATP](c). High levels of the plasma membrane lactate-monocarboxylate transporter, MCT1, were found in both cell types, and exogenous lactate efficiently closed K(ATP) channels in GR neurons. These data suggest that (1) ATP-independent intracellular signalling mechanisms lead to the stimulation of hypothalamic neurons by glucose, and (2) these effects may be potentiated in vivo by the release of lactate from neighbouring glial cells.

  10. Dynamic imaging of free cytosolic ATP concentration during fuel sensing by rat hypothalamic neurones: evidence for ATP-independent control of ATP-sensitive K+ channels

    PubMed Central

    Ainscow, Edward K; Mirshamsi, Shirin; Tang, Teresa; Ashford, Michael L J; Rutter, Guy A

    2002-01-01

    Glucose-responsive (GR) neurons from hypothalamic nuclei are implicated in the regulation of feeding and satiety. To determine the role of intracellular ATP in the closure of ATP-sensitive K+ (KATP) channels in these cells and associated glia, the cytosolic ATP concentration ([ATP]c) was monitored in vivo using adenoviral-driven expression of recombinant targeted luciferases and bioluminescence imaging. Arguing against a role for ATP in the closure of KATP channels in GR neurons, glucose (3 or 15 mm) caused no detectable increase in [ATP]c, monitored with cytosolic luciferase, and only a small decrease in the concentration of ATP immediately beneath the plasma membrane, monitored with a SNAP25–luciferase fusion protein. In contrast to hypothalamic neurons, hypothalamic glia responded to glucose (3 and 15 mm) with a significant increase in [ATP]c. Both neurons and glia from the cerebellum, a glucose-unresponsive region of the brain, responded robustly to 3 or 15 mm glucose with increases in [ATP]c. Further implicating an ATP-independent mechanism of KATP channel closure in hypothalamic neurons, removal of extracellular glucose (10 mm) suppressed the electrical activity of GR neurons in the presence of a fixed, high concentration (3 mm) of intracellular ATP. Neurons from both brain regions responded to 5 mm lactate (but not pyruvate) with an oligomycin-sensitive increase in [ATP]c. High levels of the plasma membrane lactate-monocarboxylate transporter, MCT1, were found in both cell types, and exogenous lactate efficiently closed KATP channels in GR neurons. These data suggest that (1) ATP-independent intracellular signalling mechanisms lead to the stimulation of hypothalamic neurons by glucose, and (2) these effects may be potentiated in vivo by the release of lactate from neighbouring glial cells. PMID:12381816

  11. Functional connectivity in in vitro neuronal assemblies

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  12. Micropatterning neuronal networks.

    PubMed

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

    2014-07-01

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

  13. Neuronal polarization.

    PubMed

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

    2015-06-15

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

  14. Neuronal migration illuminated

    PubMed Central

    Trivedi, Niraj

    2011-01-01

    During vertebrate brain development, migration of neurons from the germinal zones to their final laminar positions is essential to establish functional neural circuits.1–3 Whereas key insights into neuronal migration initially came from landmark studies identifying the genes mutated in human cortical malformations,4 cell biology has recently greatly advanced our understanding of how cytoskeletal proteins and molecular motors drive the morphogenic cell movements that build the developing brain. This Commentary & View reviews recent studies examining the role of the molecular motors during neuronal migration and critically examines current models of acto-myosin function in the two-step neuronal migration cycle. Given the apparent emerging diversity of neuronal sub-type cytoskeletal organizations, we propose that two approaches must be taken to resolve differences between the current migration models: the mechanisms of radial and tangential migration must be compared, and the loci of tension generation, migration substrates and sites of adhesion dynamics must be precisely examined in an integrated manner. PMID:20935494

  15. What we know currently about mirror neurons.

    PubMed

    Kilner, J M; Lemon, R N

    2013-12-01

    Mirror neurons were discovered over twenty years ago in the ventral premotor region F5 of the macaque monkey. Since their discovery much has been written about these neurons, both in the scientific literature and in the popular press. They have been proposed to be the neuronal substrate underlying a vast array of different functions. Indeed so much has been written about mirror neurons that last year they were referred to, rightly or wrongly, as "The most hyped concept in neuroscience". Here we try to cut through some of this hyperbole and review what is currently known (and not known) about mirror neurons.

  16. Effects of surface asymmetry on neuronal growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Staii, Cristian

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

  17. Microwave alcohol fuel sensor

    SciTech Connect

    Kimura, K.; Endo, A.; Morozumi, H.; Shibata, T.

    1984-06-05

    A microwave alcohol fuel sensor comprises a microwave oscillator, a microwave receiver, and a microwave transmission circuit connected to the oscillator and the receiver. The microwave transmission circuit comprises a dielectric substrate and, a strip line mounted on the substrate so that microwaves leak from the substrate to an alcohol gasoline fuel, and the microwaves attenuate by alcohol dielectric loss, whereby output voltage from the receiver corresponds to alcohol content rate. The dielectric substrate is formed tubular so that a constant amount of the fuel is fed the sensor.

  18. Inhibition of spontaneous network activity in neonatal hippocampal slices by energy substrates is not correlated with intracellular acidification.

    PubMed

    Mukhtarov, Marat; Ivanov, Anton; Zilberter, Yuri; Bregestovski, Piotr

    2011-01-01

    Several energy substrates complementary to glucose, including lactate, pyruvate and β-hydroxybutyrate, serve as a fuel for neurons. It was reported recently that these substrates can substantially modulate cortical excitability in neonatal slices. However, complementary energy substrates (CES) can also induce an intracellular acidification when added exogenously. Therefore, action of CES on the neuronal properties governing excitability in neonatal brain slices may be underlain by a change in the cell energy status or by intracellular acidification, or both. Here, we attempt to elucidate these possibilities in neonatal hippocampus by recording neuronal population activity and monitoring intracellular pH. We show that a spontaneous network activity pattern, giant depolarizing potentials (GDPs), characteristic for the neonatal hippocampal slices exposed to artificial cerebrospinal fluid, is strongly inhibited by CES and this effect is unlikely to be caused by a subtle intracellular acidification induced by these compounds. Indeed, a much stronger intracellular acidification in the HCO(3) -free solution inhibited neither the GDP frequency nor the GDP amplitude. Therefore, modulation of neuronal energy homeostasis is the most likely factor underlying the effect of lactate, pyruvate and β-hydroxybutyrate on network excitability in neonatal brain slices.

  19. Physiology of neuronal-glial networking.

    PubMed

    Verkhratsky, Alexei

    2010-11-01

    Neuronal-glial networks are the substrate for the brain function. Evolution of the nervous system resulted in the appearance of highly specialized neuronal web optimized for rapid information transfer. This neuronal web is embedded into glial syncytium, thereby creating sophisticated neuronal-glial circuitry were both types of neural cells are working in concert, ensuring amplification of brain computational power. In addition neuroglial cells are fundamental for control of brain homeostasis and they represent the intrinsic brain defence system, being thus intimately involved in pathogenesis of neurological diseases.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1997-10-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1996-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-01

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

  3. 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

  4. Motor Neuron Diseases

    MedlinePlus

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

  5. Motor Neuron Diseases

    MedlinePlus

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

  6. Tuning supramolecular mechanics to guide neuron development

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  7. Context-aware modeling of neuronal morphologies

    PubMed Central

    Torben-Nielsen, Benjamin; De Schutter, Erik

    2014-01-01

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

  8. Respiratory Modulation Of Premotor Cardiac Vagal Neurons In The Brainstem

    PubMed Central

    Dergacheva, Olga; Griffioen, Kathleen J.; Neff, Robert A.; Mendelowitz, David

    2010-01-01

    The respiratory and cardiovascular systems are highly intertwined, both anatomically and physiologically. Respiratory and cardiovascular neurons are often co-localized in the same brainstem regions, and this is particularly evident in the ventral medulla which contains pre-sympathetic neurons in the rostral ventrolateral medulla, premotor parasympathetic cardioinhibitory neurons in the nucleus ambiguus, and the ventral respiratory group, which includes the pre-Botzinger complex. Anatomical studies of respiratory and cardiovascular neurons have demonstrated that many of these neurons have projections and axon collateral processes which extend into their neighboring cardiorespiratory regions providing an anatomical substrate for cardiorespiratory interactions. As other reports in this Special Issue of Respiratory Physiology & Neurobiology focus on interactions between the respiratory network and baroreceptors, neurons in the nucleus tractus solitarius, presympathetic neurons and sympathetic activity, this report will focus on the respiratory modulation of parasympathetic activity and the neurons that generate parasympathetic activity to the heart, cardiac vagal neurons. PMID:20452467

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

    PubMed

    Cirik, Kevser

    2014-05-01

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

  10. MINERALIZATION OF MTBE WITH VARIOUS PRIMARY SUBSTRATES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Five specialized bioreactors have been operated for over a year to evaluate the biodegradability of the fuel oxygenate methyl-t-butyl -t-butyl ether (MTBE) under difference substrate/co-substrate conditions. One bioreactor has been fed MTBE at an influent concentration of 150 ...

  11. Fuel flexible fuel injector

    DOEpatents

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

    2015-02-03

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1995-06-01

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

  13. Novel substrates.

    PubMed

    Wahed, Mahmood; Geoghegan, Michael; Powell-Tuck, Jeremy

    2007-05-01

    Enteral and parenteral feeds need at least to contain adequate amounts of water, energy, protein, electrolytes, vitamins and trace elements. Ready-manufactured parenteral feeds for example are incomplete because of shelf-life constraints and require the addition of vitamins (especially) and trace elements. Acute vitamin deficiencies, notably thiamine deficiency, can be precipitated if this is not adhered to. An increasing interest, however, exists in the use of feeds containing substrates, which are intended to improve patient outcome in particular clinical circumstances. The purpose of this article is to examine as to what is available and make recommendations on their use. It deals with artificial feeds only - disease-specific diets are outside our remit.

  14. Programmed to Learn? The Ontogeny of Mirror Neurons

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

    2009-01-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-02-01

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

  16. Nuclear fuel element

    DOEpatents

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

    1983-01-01

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

  17. [Neuronal network].

    PubMed

    Langmeier, M; Maresová, D

    2005-01-01

    Function of the central nervous system is based on mutual relations among the nerve cells. Description of nerve cells and their processes, including their contacts was enabled by improvement of optical features of the microscope and by the development of impregnation techniques. It is associated with the name of Antoni van Leeuwenhoek (1632-1723), J. Ev. Purkyne (1787-1869), Camillo Golgi (1843-1926), and Ramón y Cajal (1852-1934). Principal units of the neuronal network are the synapses. The term synapse was introduced into neurophysiology by Charles Scott Sherrington (1857-1952). Majority of the interactions between nerve cells is mediated by neurotransmitters acting at the receptors of the postsynaptic membrane or at the autoreceptors of the presynaptic part of the synapse. Attachment of the vesicles to the presynaptic membrane and the release of the neurotransmitter into the synaptic cleft depend on the intracellular calcium concentration and on the presence of several proteins in the presynaptic element.

  18. Catalyst Substrates Remove Contaminants, Produce Fuel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2012-01-01

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

  19. Neuronal oscillations and visual amplification of speech

    PubMed Central

    Schroeder, Charles E; Lakatos, Peter; Kajikawa, Yoshinao; Partan, Sarah; Puce, Aina

    2009-01-01

    It is widely recognized that viewing a speaker’s face enhances vocal communication, although the neural substrates of this phenomenon remain unknown. We propose that the enhancement effect uses the ongoing oscillatory activity of local neuronal ensembles in the primary auditory cortex. Neuronal oscillations reflect rhythmic shifting of neuronal ensembles between high and low excitability states. Our hypothesis holds that oscillations are ‘predictively’ modulated by visual input, so that related auditory input arrives during a high excitability phase and is thus amplified. We discuss the anatomical substrates and key timing parameters that enable and constrain this effect. Our hypothesis makes testable predictions for future studies and emphasizes the idea that ‘background’ oscillatory activity is instrumental to cortical sensory processing. PMID:18280772

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-11

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-11

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2002-08-01

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

  4. A vascular perspective on neuronal migration.

    PubMed

    Segarra, Marta; Kirchmaier, Bettina C; Acker-Palmer, Amparo

    2015-11-01

    During CNS development and adult neurogenesis, immature neurons travel from the germinal zones towards their final destination using cellular substrates for their migration. Classically, radial glia and neuronal axons have been shown to act as physical scaffolds to support neuroblast locomotion in processes known as gliophilic and neurophilic migration, respectively (Hatten, 1999; Marin and Rubenstein, 2003; Rakic, 2003). In adulthood, long distance neuronal migration occurs in a glial-independent manner since radial glia cells differentiate into astrocytes after birth. A series of studies highlight a novel mode of neuronal migration that uses blood vessels as scaffolds, the so-called vasophilic migration. This migration mode allows neuroblast navigation in physiological and also pathological conditions, such as neuronal precursor migration after ischemic stroke or cerebral invasion of glioma tumor cells. Here we review the current knowledge about how vessels pave the path for migrating neurons and how trophic factors derived by glio-vascular structures guide neuronal migration both during physiological as well as pathological processes.

  5. Dissociation between sensing and metabolism of glucose in sugar sensing neurones

    PubMed Central

    Gonzàlez, J Antonio; Reimann, Frank; Burdakov, Denis

    2009-01-01

    Some of the neurones controlling sleep, appetite and hormone release act as specialized detectors of ambient glucose. Their sugar sensing is conventionally thought to involve glucokinase-dependent metabolism of glucose to ATP, which then alters membrane excitability by modulating ATP-dependent channels or transporters, such as ATP-inhibited K+ channels (KATP). However, recent studies also provide examples of both glucose-excited (GE) and glucose-inhibited (GI) neurones that sense glucose independently of such metabolic pathways. Two-thirds of hypothalamic GE neurones in primary cultures are also excited by the non-metabolizable glucose analogue α-methylglucopyranoside (α-MDG), which acts as a substrate for electrogenic (depolarizing) sodium–glucose cotransporter (SGLT). The excitatory responses to both glucose and α-MDG are abolished by arresting SGLT activity by sodium removal or the SGLT inhibitor phloridzin. Direct depolarization and excitation by glucose-triggered SGLT activity may ensure that GE neurones continue to sense glucose in ‘high-energy’ states, when KATP channels are closed. A major class of hypothalamic GI neurones, the orexin/hypocretin cells, also appear to use a non-metabolic sensing strategy. In these cells, glucose-induced hyperpolarization and inhibition are unaffected by glucokinase inhibitors such as alloxan, d-glucosamine, and N-acetyl-d-glucosamine, and mimicked by the non-metabolizable glucose analogue 2-deoxyglucose, but not by stimulating intracellular ATP production with lactate. The dissociation between sensing and metabolism of sugar may allow the brain to predict and prevent adverse changes in extracellular glucose levels with minimal impact on the flow of intracellular fuel. PMID:18981030

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

    PubMed

    Hatanaka, Yumiko; Zhu, Yan; Torigoe, Makio; Kita, Yoshiaki; Murakami, Fujio

    2016-01-01

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

  7. Power electronics substrate for direct substrate cooling

    DOEpatents

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

    2012-05-01

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

  8. Microfabrication- and microfluidics-based patterning of cultured neuronal network.

    PubMed

    Takayama, Yuzo; Kotake, Naoki; Haga, Tatsuya; Suzuki, Takafumi; Mabuchi, Kunihiko

    2011-01-01

    The cultured neuronal monolayer has been a promising model system for studying the neuronal dynamics, from single cell to network-wide level. Randomness in the reconstituted network structure has, however, hindered regulated signal transmissions from one neuron to another or from one neuronal population to another. Applying microfabrication-based cell patterning techniques is a promising approach to handling these problems. In the present study, we attempt to regulate the direction of axon development and the pathway of signal transmissions in cultured neuronal networks using micro-fabrication and - fluidic techniques. We created a PDMS-based culture device, which consisted of arrays of U-shaped cell trapping microwells, and placed it onto a chemically micropatterned glass substrate. After 6 days in vitro, we confirmed that cortical neurons extended neurites along the medium flow direction and the micropatterned regions. PMID:22255121

  9. Development of tubular SOFC using metallic substrate

    SciTech Connect

    Nagata, S.; Okuo, T.; Kaga, Y.; Kasuga, Y.; Momma, K.; Tsukamoto, K.; Uchiyama, F.

    1995-12-31

    The tubular SOFCs using porous metallic substrates have been developed. The substrates can act as excellent fuel electrodes of low activation polarizations by baking fine Ni layers on them. These substrates can be compatible with other materials composing SOFCs in life tests including sudden and scheduled interruptions. The cells were fabricated by the combined method of the spray process and the wet process. In the life test at 1,198K, the power density of 0.3W/cm{sup 2} was kept over 3,000 hours at the current density of 0.4A/cm{sup 2}.

  10. Effects of Surface Asymmetry on Neuronal Growth

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  11. Effects of surface asymmetry on neuronal growth.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  12. Studying neuronal biomechanics and its role in CNS development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2013-03-01

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

  13. Neurite outgrowth and branching of PC12 cells on very soft substrates sharply decreases below a threshold of substrate rigidity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leach, Jennie B.; Brown, Xin Q.; Jacot, Jeffrey G.; Di Milla, Paul A.; Wong, Joyce Y.

    2007-06-01

    Rationally designed matrices for nerve tissue engineering and encapsulated cell therapies critically rely on a comprehensive understanding of neural response to biochemical as well as biophysical cues. Whereas biochemical cues are established mediators of neuronal behavior (e.g., outgrowth), physical cues such as substrate stiffness have only recently been recognized to influence cell behavior. In this work, we examine the response of PC12 neurites to substrate stiffness. We quantified and controlled fibronectin density on the substrates and measured multiple neurite behaviors (e.g., growth, branching, neurites per cell, per cent cells expressing neurites) in a large sample population. We found that PC12 neurons display a threshold response to substrate stiffness. On the softest substrates tested (shear modulus ~10 Pa), neurites were relatively few, short in length and unbranched. On stiffer substrates (shear modulus ~102-104 Pa), neurites were longer and more branched and a greater percentage of cells expressed neurites; significant differences in these measures were not found on substrates with a shear modulus >102 Pa. Based on these data and comparisons with published neurobiology and neuroengineering reports of neurite mechanotransduction, we hypothesize that results from studies of neuronal response to compliant substrates are cell-type dependent and sensitive to ligand density, sample size and the range of stiffness investigated.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  15. Neuronal death in the hippocampus is promoted by plasmin-catalyzed degradation of laminin.

    PubMed

    Chen, Z L; Strickland, S

    1997-12-26

    Excess excitatory amino acids can provoke neuronal death in the hippocampus, and the extracellular proteases tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) and plasmin (ogen) have been implicated in this death. To investigate substrates for plasmin that might influence neuronal degeneration, extracellular matrix (ECM) protein expression was examined. Laminin is expressed in the hippocampus and disappears after excitotoxin injection. Laminin disappearance precedes neuronal death, is spatially coincident with regions that exhibit neuronal loss, and is blocked by either tPA-deficiency or infusion of a plasmin inhibitor, both of which also block neuronal degeneration. Preventing neuron-laminin interaction by infusion of anti-laminin antibodies into tPA-deficient mice restores excitotoxic sensitivity to their hippocampal neurons. These results indicate that disruption of neuron-ECM interaction via tPA/plasmin catalyzed degradation of laminin sensitizes hippocampal neurons to cell death.

  16. Corrosion resistant PEM fuel cell

    DOEpatents

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

    2011-06-07

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

  17. Corrosion resistant PEM fuel cell

    DOEpatents

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

    2002-01-01

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

  18. Modeling neural differentiation on micropatterned substrates coated with neural matrix components

    PubMed Central

    García-Parra, Patricia; Cavaliere, Fabio; Maroto, Marcos; Bilbao, Leire; Obieta, Isabel; López de Munain, Adolfo; Álava, José Iñaki; Izeta, Ander

    2012-01-01

    Topographical and biochemical characteristics of the substrate are critical for neuronal differentiation including axonal outgrowth and regeneration of neural circuits in vivo. Contact stimuli and signaling molecules allow neurons to develop and stabilize synaptic contacts. Here we present the development, characterization and functional validation of a new polymeric support able to induce neuronal differentiation in both PC12 cell line and adult primary skin-derived precursor cells (SKPs) in vitro. By combining a photolithographic technique with use of neural extracellular matrix (ECM) as a substrate, a biocompatible and efficient microenvironment for neuronal differentiation was developed. PMID:22435050

  19. Towards neuronal organoids: a method for long-term culturing of high-density hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Todd, George K; Boosalis, Casey A; Burzycki, Aaron A; Steinman, Michael Q; Hester, Lynda D; Shuster, Pete W; Patterson, Randen L

    2013-01-01

    One of the goals in neuroscience is to obtain tractable laboratory cultures that closely recapitulate in vivo systems while still providing ease of use in the lab. Because neurons can exist in the body over a lifetime, long-term culture systems are necessary so as to closely mimic the physiological conditions under laboratory culture conditions. Ideally, such a neuronal organoid culture would contain multiple cell types, be highly differentiated, and have a high density of interconnected cells. However, before these types of cultures can be created, certain problems associated with long-term neuronal culturing must be addressed. We sought to develop a new protocol which may further prolong the duration and integrity of E18 rat hippocampal cultures. We have developed a protocol that allows for culturing of E18 hippocampal neurons at high densities for more than 120 days. These cultured hippocampal neurons are (i) well differentiated with high numbers of synapses, (ii) anchored securely to their substrate, (iii) have high levels of functional connectivity, and (iv) form dense multi-layered cellular networks. We propose that our culture methodology is likely to be effective for multiple neuronal subtypes-particularly those that can be grown in Neurobasal/B27 media. This methodology presents new avenues for long-term functional studies in neurons.

  20. Glutamatergic lateral parabrachial neurons innervate orexin-containing hypothalamic neurons in the rat.

    PubMed

    Niu, Jian-Guo; Yokota, Shigefumi; Tsumori, Toshiko; Qin, Yi; Yasui, Yukihiko

    2010-10-28

    We performed this study to understand the anatomical substrates of parabrachial nucleus (PBN) modulation of orexin (ORX)-containing neurons in the hypothalamus. After biotinylated dextranamine (BDA) injection into the lateral PBN and immunostaining of ORX-containing neurons in the rat, the prominent overlap of the distribution field of the BDA-labeled fibers and that of the ORX-immunoreactive (ir) neurons was found in the lateralmost part of the dorsomedial nucleus and adjacent dorsal perifornical area (this overlapping field was referred to as "suprafornical area" in the present study), and the labeled axon terminals made asymmetrical synaptic contacts with somata and dendrites of the ORX-ir neurons. We further revealed that almost all the "suprafornical area"-projecting lateral PBN neurons were positive for vesicular glutamate transporter 2 mRNA and very few of them were positive for glutamic acid decarboxylase 67 mRNA. The present data suggest that ORX-containing neurons in the "suprafornical area" may be under the excitatory influence of the glutamatergic lateral PBN neurons probably for the regulation of arousal and waking.

  1. Scanning Electron Microscopy Observation of Interface Between Single Neurons and Conductive Surfaces.

    PubMed

    Goto, Toichiro; Kasai, Nahoko; Lut, Rick; Filip, Roxana; Sumitomo, Koji

    2016-04-01

    Interfaces between single neurons and conductive substrates were investigated using focused ion beam (FIB) milling and subsequent scanning electron microscopy (SEM) observation. The interfaces play an important role in controlling neuronal growth when we fabricate neuron-nanostructure integrated devices. Cross sectional images of cultivated neurons obtained with an FIB/SEM dual system show the clear affinity of the neurons for the substrates. Very few neurons attached themselves to indium tin oxide (ITO) and this repulsion yielded a wide interspace at the neuron-ITO interface. A neuron-gold interface exhibited partial adhesion. On the other hand, a neuron-titanium interface showed good adhesion and small interspaces were observed. These results are consistent with an assessment made using fluorescence microscopy. We expect the much higher spatial resolution of SEM images to provide us with more detailed information. Our study shows that the interface between a single neuron and a substrate offers useful information as regards improving surface properties and establishing neuron-nanostructure integrated devices. PMID:27451637

  2. Neuronal substrates and functional consequences of prenatal cannabis exposure.

    PubMed

    Calvigioni, Daniela; Hurd, Yasmin L; Harkany, Tibor; Keimpema, Erik

    2014-10-01

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

  3. Neuronal substrates and functional consequences of prenatal cannabis exposure

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  4. Neuronal-glial networks as substrate for CNS integration

    PubMed Central

    Verkhratsky, A; Toescu, E C

    2006-01-01

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

  5. Neuron adhesion and strengthening

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rocha, Aracely; Jian, Kuihuan; Ko, Gladys; Liang, Hong

    2010-07-01

    Understanding the neuron/material adhesion is important for neuron stimulation and growth. The current challenges remain in the lack of precision of measuring techniques and understanding the behavior of neuron. Here, we report a fluid shear method to investigate adhesion at the neuron/poly-D-lysine interface. In this study, the adhesion of 12-day-old chick embryo-retina neurons cultured on poly-D-lysine coated glass coverslips was measured via parallel disk rotational flow. The shear stress experienced by the cells increases with the disk radius. There is a critical point along the radius (Rc) where the stress experienced by the neurons equals their adhesion. The measured Rc can be used to calculate the neuron adhesion. Our results demonstrate that neurons adhered to the poly-D-lysine had a strain hardening effect. The adhesive shear stress of the neuron-material increased with applied shear (τa). When the τa reached or exceeded the value of 40 dyn/cm2, the adhesion remained constant at approximately 30 dyn/cm2. The present work allowed us not only to quantify the adhesive strength and force but also to evaluate the value of strain hardening at the neuron/poly-D-lysine interface.

  6. Fossil fuels -- future fuels

    SciTech Connect

    1998-03-01

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

  7. Interactive properties of human glioblastoma cells with brain neurons in culture and neuronal modulation of glial laminin organization.

    PubMed

    Faria, Jane; Romão, Luciana; Martins, Sheila; Alves, Tércia; Mendes, Fabio A; de Faria, Giselle Pinto; Hollanda, Rosenilde; Takiya, Christina; Chimelli, Leila; Morandi, Veronica; de Souza, Jorge Marcondes; Abreu, Jose Garcia; Moura Neto, Vivaldo

    2006-12-01

    The harmonious development of the central nervous system depends on the interactions of the neuronal and glial cells. Extracellular matrix elements play important roles in these interactions, especially laminin produced by astrocytes, which has been shown to be a good substrate for neuron growth and axonal guidance. Glioblastomas are the most common subtypes of primary brain tumors and may be astrocytes in origin. As normal laminin-producing glial cells are the preferential substrate for neurons, and glial tumors have been shown to produce laminin, we questioned whether glioblastoma retained the same normal glial-neuron interactive properties with respect to neuronal growth and differentiation. Then, rat neurons were co-cultured onto rat normal astrocytes or onto three human glioblastoma cell lines obtained from neurosurgery. The co-culture confirmed that human glioblastoma cells as well as astrocytes maintained the ability to support neuritogenesis, but non-neural normal or tumoral cells failed to do so. However, glioblastoma cells did not distinguish embryonic from post-natal neurons in relation to neurite pattern in the co-cultures, as normal astrocytes did. Further, the laminin organization on both normal and tumoral glial cells was altered from a filamentous arrangement to a mixed punctuate/filamentous pattern when in co-culture with neurons. Together, these results suggest that glioblastoma cells could identify neuronal cells as partners, to support their growth and induce complex neurites, but they lost the normal glia property to distinguish neuronal age. In addition, our results show for the first time that neurons modulate the organization of astrocytes and glioblastoma laminin on the extracellular matrix.

  8. Neural substrates underlying intentional empathy

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

  9. Motor Neurons that Multitask

    PubMed Central

    Goulding, Martyn

    2013-01-01

    Animals use a form of sensory feedback termed proprioception to monitor their body position and modify the motor programs that control movement. In this issue of Neuron, Wen et al. (2012) provide evidence that a subset of motor neurons function as proprioceptors in C. elegans, where B-type motor neurons sense body curvature to control the bending movements that drive forward locomotion. PMID:23177952

  10. Mesmerising mirror neurons.

    PubMed

    Heyes, Cecilia

    2010-06-01

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

  11. Opportunity fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Lutwen, R.C.

    1994-12-31

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

  12. Ribbed electrode substrates

    DOEpatents

    Breault, Richard D.; Goller, Glen J.

    1983-01-01

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

  13. Coated substrates and process

    DOEpatents

    Chu, Wei-kan; Childs, Charles B.

    1991-01-01

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

  14. Polished polymide substrate

    DOEpatents

    Farah, John; Sudarshanam, Venkatapuram S.

    2003-05-13

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

  15. Recovery of EUVL substrates

    SciTech Connect

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

    1995-01-19

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

  16. Life and death of neurons in the aging brain

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    1997-01-01

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

  17. Growth of large patterned arrays of neurons using plasma methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, I. G.; Bjornstad, K. A.; Blakely, E. A.; Galvin, J. E.; Monteiro, O. R.; Sangyuenyongpipat, S.

    2003-05-01

    To understand how large systems of neurons communicate, we need to develop, among other things, methods for growing patterned networks of large numbers of neurons. Success with this challenge will be important to our understanding of how the brain works, as well as to the development of novel kinds of computer architecture that may parallel the organization of the brain. We have investigated the use of metal ion implantation using a vacuum-arc ion source, and plasma deposition with a filtered vacuum-arc system, as a means of forming regions of selective neuronal attachment on surfaces. Lithographic patterns created by the treating surface with ion species that enhance or inhibit neuronal cell attachment allow subsequent proliferation and/or differentiation of the neurons to form desired patterned neural arrays. In the work described here, we used glass microscope slides as substrates, and some of the experiments made use of simple masks to form patterns of ion beam or plasma deposition treated regions. PC-12 rat neurons were then cultured on the treated substrates coated with Type I Collagen, and the growth and differentiation was monitored. Particularly good selective growth was obtained using plasma deposition of diamond-like carbon films of about one hundred Angstroms thickness. Neuron proliferation and the elaboration of dendrites and axons after the addition of nerve growth factor both showed excellent contrast, with prolific growth and differentiation on the treated surfaces and very low growth on the untreated surfaces.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-04-01

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

  19. Corticospinal mirror neurons.

    PubMed

    Kraskov, A; Philipp, R; Waldert, S; Vigneswaran, G; Quallo, M M; Lemon, R N

    2014-01-01

    Here, we report the properties of neurons with mirror-like characteristics that were identified as pyramidal tract neurons (PTNs) and recorded in the ventral premotor cortex (area F5) and primary motor cortex (M1) of three macaque monkeys. We analysed the neurons' discharge while the monkeys performed active grasp of either food or an object, and also while they observed an experimenter carrying out a similar range of grasps. A considerable proportion of tested PTNs showed clear mirror-like properties (52% F5 and 58% M1). Some PTNs exhibited 'classical' mirror neuron properties, increasing activity for both execution and observation, while others decreased their discharge during observation ('suppression mirror-neurons'). These experiments not only demonstrate the existence of PTNs as mirror neurons in M1, but also reveal some interesting differences between M1 and F5 mirror PTNs. Although observation-related changes in the discharge of PTNs must reach the spinal cord and will include some direct projections to motoneurons supplying grasping muscles, there was no EMG activity in these muscles during action observation. We suggest that the mirror neuron system is involved in the withholding of unwanted movement during action observation. Mirror neurons are differentially recruited in the behaviour that switches rapidly between making your own movements and observing those of others.

  20. NEURON and Python.

    PubMed

    Hines, Michael L; Davison, Andrew P; Muller, Eilif

    2009-01-01

    The NEURON simulation program now allows Python to be used, alone or in combination with NEURON's traditional Hoc interpreter. Adding Python to NEURON has the immediate benefit of making available a very extensive suite of analysis tools written for engineering and science. It also catalyzes NEURON software development by offering users a modern programming tool that is recognized for its flexibility and power to create and maintain complex programs. At the same time, nothing is lost because all existing models written in Hoc, including graphical user interface tools, continue to work without change and are also available within the Python context. An example of the benefits of Python availability is the use of the xml module in implementing NEURON's Import3D and CellBuild tools to read MorphML and NeuroML model specifications.

  1. Temporal coding in a silicon network of integrate-and-fire neurons.

    PubMed

    Liu, Shih-Chii; Douglas, Rodney

    2004-09-01

    Spatio-temporal processing of spike trains by neuronal networks depends on a variety of mechanisms distributed across synapses, dendrites, and somata. In natural systems, the spike trains and the processing mechanisms cohere though their common physical instantiation. This coherence is lost when the natural system is encoded for simulation on a general purpose computer. By contrast, analog VLSI circuits are, like neurons, inherently related by their real-time physics, and so, could provide a useful substrate for exploring neuronlike event-based processing. Here, we describe a hybrid analog-digital VLSI chip comprising a set of integrate-and-fire neurons and short-term dynamical synapses that can be configured into simple network architectures with some properties of neocortical neuronal circuits. We show that, despite considerable fabrication variance in the properties of individual neurons, the chip offers a viable substrate for exploring real-time spike-based processing in networks of neurons.

  2. Matrix stiffness modulates formation and activity of neuronal networks of controlled architectures.

    PubMed

    Lantoine, Joséphine; Grevesse, Thomas; Villers, Agnès; Delhaye, Geoffrey; Mestdagh, Camille; Versaevel, Marie; Mohammed, Danahe; Bruyère, Céline; Alaimo, Laura; Lacour, Stéphanie P; Ris, Laurence; Gabriele, Sylvain

    2016-05-01

    The ability to construct easily in vitro networks of primary neurons organized with imposed topologies is required for neural tissue engineering as well as for the development of neuronal interfaces with desirable characteristics. However, accumulating evidence suggests that the mechanical properties of the culture matrix can modulate important neuronal functions such as growth, extension, branching and activity. Here we designed robust and reproducible laminin-polylysine grid micropatterns on cell culture substrates that have similar biochemical properties but a 100-fold difference in Young's modulus to investigate the role of the matrix rigidity on the formation and activity of cortical neuronal networks. We found that cell bodies of primary cortical neurons gradually accumulate in circular islands, whereas axonal extensions spread on linear tracks to connect circular islands. Our findings indicate that migration of cortical neurons is enhanced on soft substrates, leading to a faster formation of neuronal networks. Furthermore, the pre-synaptic density was two times higher on stiff substrates and consistently the number of action potentials and miniature synaptic currents was enhanced on stiff substrates. Taken together, our results provide compelling evidence to indicate that matrix stiffness is a key parameter to modulate the growth dynamics, synaptic density and electrophysiological activity of cortical neuronal networks, thus providing useful information on scaffold design for neural tissue engineering.

  3. Transporting mitochondria in neurons

    PubMed Central

    Course, Meredith M.; Wang, Xinnan

    2016-01-01

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

  4. Multistructural biomimetic substrates for controlled cellular differentiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-02-01

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

  5. Signal Propagation between Neuronal Populations Controlled by Micropatterning

    PubMed Central

    Albers, Jonas; Offenhäusser, Andreas

    2016-01-01

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

  6. Signal Propagation between Neuronal Populations Controlled by Micropatterning.

    PubMed

    Albers, Jonas; Offenhäusser, Andreas

    2016-01-01

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

  7. How microglia kill neurons.

    PubMed

    Brown, Guy C; Vilalta, Anna

    2015-12-01

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

  8. Somatosensory Substrates of Flight Control in Bats

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  9. Somatosensory substrates of flight control in bats.

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-12

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-06-01

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

  11. Catalytic combustion with incompletely vaporized residual fuel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosfjord, T. J.

    1981-01-01

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

  12. Fuel pin

    DOEpatents

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

    1987-11-24

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

  13. Cellular Links between Neuronal Activity and Energy Homeostasis

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-12-24

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

  15. Consciousness and the structure of neuronal representations.

    PubMed Central

    Singer, W

    1998-01-01

    The hypothesis is defended that brains expressing phenomenal awareness are capable of generating metarepresentations of their cognitive processes, these metarepresentations resulting from an iteration of self-similar cortical operations. Search for the neuronal substrate of awareness therefore converges with the search for the nature of neuronal representations. It is proposed that evolved brains use two complementary representational strategies. One consists of the generation of neurons responding selectively to a particular constellation of features and is based on selective recombination of inputs in hierarchically structured feedforward architectures. The other relies on the dynamic association of feature-specific cells into functionally coherent cell assemblies that, as a whole, represent the constellation of features defining a particular perceptual object. Arguments are presented that favour the notion that the metarepresentations supporting awareness are established in accordance with the second strategy. Experimental data are reviewed that are compatible with the hypothesis that evolved brains use assembly codes for the representation of contents and that these assemblies become organized through transient synchronization of the discharges of associated neurons. It is argued that central states favouring the formation of assembly-based representations are similar to those favouring awareness. PMID:9854255

  16. Neuromorphic Silicon Neuron Circuits

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  17. Neuronal ubiquitin homeostasis

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  18. Physical and biological regulation of neuron regenerative growth and network formation on recombinant dragline silks.

    PubMed

    An, Bo; Tang-Schomer, Min D; Huang, Wenwen; He, Jiuyang; Jones, Justin A; Lewis, Randolph V; Kaplan, David L

    2015-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  20. NeuronBank: A Tool for Cataloging Neuronal Circuitry

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

    Carbon nanotube substrates are promising candidates for biological applications and devices. Interfacing of these carbon nanotubes with neurons can be controlled by chemical modifications. In this study, we investigated how chemical surface functionalisation of multi-walled carbon nanotube arrays (MWNT-A) influences neuronal adhesion and network organization. Functionalisation of MWNT-A dramatically modifies length of neurite fascicles, cluster interconnection success rate, and percentage of neurites that escape from the clusters. We propose that chemical functionalisation represents a method of choice for developing applications in which neuronal patterning on MWNT-A substrates is a must. PMID:21436508

  2. Fuel cell oxygen electrode

    DOEpatents

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

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

  3. Fuel cell oxygen electrode

    DOEpatents

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

    1980-11-04

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  5. Diesel fuel by fermentation of wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Pierce, S.M.; Wayman, M.

    1983-01-11

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

  6. Neuronal avalanches and learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Arcangelis, Lucilla

    2011-05-01

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

  7. The role of dimensionality in neuronal network dynamics

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  8. The role of dimensionality in neuronal network dynamics.

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  9. Synapse-to-neuron ratio is inversely related to neuronal density in mature neuronal cultures.

    PubMed

    Cullen, D Kacy; Gilroy, Meghan E; Irons, Hillary R; Laplaca, Michelle C

    2010-11-01

    Synapse formation is a fundamental process in neurons that occurs throughout development, maturity, and aging. Although these stages contain disparate and fluctuating numbers of mature neurons, tactics employed by neuronal networks to modulate synapse number as a function of neuronal density are not well understood. The goal of this study was to utilize an in vitro model to assess the influence of cell density and neuronal maturity on synapse number and distribution. Specifically, cerebral cortical neurons were plated in planar culture at densities ranging from 10 to 5000 neurons/mm², and synapse number and distribution were evaluated via immunocytochemistry over 21 days in vitro (DIV). High-resolution confocal microscopy revealed an elaborate three-dimensional distribution of neurites and synapses across the heights of high-density neuronal networks by 21 DIV, which were up to 18 μm thick, demonstrating the complex degree of spatial interactions even in planar high-density cultures. At 7 DIV, the mean number of synapses per neuron was less than 5, and this did not vary as a function of neuronal density. However, by 21 DIV, the number of synapses per neuron had jumped 30- to 80-fold, and the synapse-to-neuron ratio was greatest at lower neuronal densities (< 500 neurons/mm²; mean approximately 400 synapses/neuron) compared to mid and higher neuronal densities (500-4500 neurons/mm²; mean of approximately 150 synapses/neuron) (p<0.05). These results suggest a relationship between neuronal density and synapse number that may have implications in the neurobiology of developing neuronal networks as well as processes of cell death and regeneration.

  10. Endocytosis Regulates Cell Soma Translocation and the Distribution of Adhesion Proteins in Migrating Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Shieh, Jennifer C.; Schaar, Bruce T.; Srinivasan, Karpagam; Brodsky, Frances M.; McConnell, Susan K.

    2011-01-01

    Newborn neurons migrate from their birthplace to their final location to form a properly functioning nervous system. During these movements, young neurons must attach and subsequently detach from their substrate to facilitate migration, but little is known about the mechanisms cells use to release their attachments. We show that the machinery for clathrin-mediated endocytosis is positioned to regulate the distribution of adhesion proteins in a subcellular region just proximal to the neuronal cell body. Inhibiting clathrin or dynamin function impedes the movement of migrating neurons both in vitro and in vivo. Inhibiting dynamin function in vitro shifts the distribution of adhesion proteins to the rear of the cell. These results suggest that endocytosis may play a critical role in regulating substrate detachment to enable cell body translocation in migrating neurons. PMID:21445347

  11. Estrogen regulates energy metabolic pathway and upstream adenosine 5'-monophosphate-activated protein kinase and phosphatase enzyme expression in dorsal vagal complex metabolosensory neurons during glucostasis and hypoglycemia.

    PubMed

    Tamrakar, Pratistha; Ibrahim, Baher A; Gujar, Amit D; Briski, Karen P

    2015-02-01

    The ability of estrogen to shield the brain from the bioenergetic insult hypoglycemia is unclear. Estradiol (E) prevents hypoglycemic activation of the energy deficit sensor adenosine 5'-monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) in hindbrain metabolosensory A2 noradrenergic neurons. This study investigates the hypothesis that estrogen regulates A2 AMPK through control of fuel metabolism and/or upstream protein kinase/phosphatase enzyme expression. A2 cells were harvested by laser microdissection after insulin or vehicle (V) injection of E- or oil (O)-implanted ovariectomized female rats. Cell lysates were evaluated by immunoblot for glycolytic, tricarboxylic acid cycle, respiratory chain, and acetyl-CoA-malonyl-CoA pathway enzymes. A2 phosphofructokinase (PFKL), isocitrate dehydrogenase, pyruvate dehydrogenase, and ATP synthase subunit profiles were elevated in E/V vs. O/V; hypoglycemia augmented PFKL and α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase expression in E only. Hypoglycemia increased A2 Ca(2+) /calmodulin-dependent protein kinase-β in O and reduced protein phosphatase in both groups. A2 phospho-AMPK levels were equivalent in O/V vs. E/V but elevated during hypoglycemia in O only. These results implicate E in compensatory upregulation of substrate catabolism and corresponding maintenance of energy stability of A2 metabolosensory neurons during hypoglycemia, outcomes that support the potential viability of molecular substrates for hormone action as targets for therapies alleviating hypoglycemic brain injury.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2013-10-01

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

  13. Lightweight Substrates For Mirrors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, D. Kyle

    1991-01-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-02-01

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

  15. Imaging voltage in neurons

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  16. Colloidal Drop Deposition on Porous Substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-11-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-06-21

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

  18. Opportunity fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Lutwen, R.C.

    1996-12-31

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

  19. Exploring neuronal activity with photons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourdieu, Laurent; Léger, Jean-François

    2015-10-01

    The following sections are included: * Introduction * Information coding * Optical recordings of neuronal activity * Functional organization of the cortex at the level of a cortical column * Microarchitecture of a cortical column * Dynamics of neuronal populations * Outlook * Bibliography

  20. The neuron classification problem

    PubMed Central

    Bota, Mihail; Swanson, Larry W.

    2007-01-01

    A systematic account of neuron cell types is a basic prerequisite for determining the vertebrate nervous system global wiring diagram. With comprehensive lineage and phylogenetic information unavailable, a general ontology based on structure-function taxonomy is proposed and implemented in a knowledge management system, and a prototype analysis of select regions (including retina, cerebellum, and hypothalamus) presented. The supporting Brain Architecture Knowledge Management System (BAMS) Neuron ontology is online and its user interface allows queries about terms and their definitions, classification criteria based on the original literature and “Petilla Convention” guidelines, hierarchies, and relations—with annotations documenting each ontology entry. Combined with three BAMS modules for neural regions, connections between regions and neuron types, and molecules, the Neuron ontology provides a general framework for physical descriptions and computational modeling of neural systems. The knowledge management system interacts with other web resources, is accessible in both XML and RDF/OWL, is extendible to the whole body, and awaits large-scale data population requiring community participation for timely implementation. PMID:17582506

  1. Nanoresolution radiology of neurons

    SciTech Connect

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

    2012-05-29

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

  2. Nanoresolution radiology of neurons

    SciTech Connect

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

    2013-04-08

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

  3. GaAs-based optoelectronic neurons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    1993-01-01

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

  4. Synthetic Fuel

    ScienceCinema

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

    2016-07-12

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

  5. Fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1984-12-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE), Office of Fossil Energy, has supported and managed a fuel cell research and development (R and D) program since 1976. Responsibility for implementing DOE's fuel cell program, which includes activities related to both fuel cells and fuel cell systems, has been assigned to the Morgantown Energy Technology Center (METC) in Morgantown, West Virginia. The total United States effort of the private and public sectors in developing fuel cell technology is referred to as the National Fuel Cell Program (NFCP). The goal of the NFCP is to develop fuel cell power plants for base-load and dispersed electric utility systems, industrial cogeneration, and on-site applications. To achieve this goal, the fuel cell developers, electric and gas utilities, research institutes, and Government agencies are working together. Four organized groups are coordinating the diversified activities of the NFCP. The status of the overall program is reviewed in detail.

  6. Synthetic Fuel

    SciTech Connect

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

    2008-03-26

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

  7. Neurons sense nanoscale roughness with nanometer sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Brunetti, V; Maiorano, G; Rizzello, L; Sorce, B; Sabella, S; Cingolani, R; Pompa, P P

    2010-04-01

    The interaction between cells and nanostructured materials is attracting increasing interest, because of the possibility to open up novel concepts for the design of smart nanobiomaterials with active biological functionalities. In this frame we investigated the response of human neuroblastoma cell line (SH-SY5Y) to gold surfaces with different levels of nanoroughness. To achieve a precise control of the nanoroughness with nanometer resolution, we exploited a wet chemistry approach based on spontaneous galvanic displacement reaction. We demonstrated that neurons sense and actively respond to the surface nanotopography, with a surprising sensitivity to variations of few nanometers. We showed that focal adhesion complexes, which allow cellular sensing, are strongly affected by nanostructured surfaces, leading to a marked decrease in cell adhesion. Moreover, cells adherent on nanorough surfaces exhibit loss of neuron polarity, Golgi apparatus fragmentation, nuclear condensation, and actin cytoskeleton that is not functionally organized. Apoptosis/necrosis assays established that nanoscale features induce cell death by necrosis, with a trend directly related to roughness values. Finally, by seeding SH-SY5Y cells onto micropatterned flat and nanorough gold surfaces, we demonstrated the possibility to realize substrates with cytophilic or cytophobic behavior, simply by fine-tuning their surface topography at nanometer scale. Specific and functional adhesion of cells occurred only onto flat gold stripes, with a clear self-alignment of neurons, delivering a simple and elegant approach for the design and development of biomaterials with precise nanostructure-triggered biological responses.

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

    PubMed Central

    Balduzzi, D.; Tononi, G.

    2012-01-01

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

  9. An Atomic Force Microscopy based investigation of specific biomechanical properties for various types of neuronal cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spedden, Elise; White, James; Kaplan, David; Staii, Cristian

    2012-02-01

    Here we describe the use of Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) based techniques to characterize and explore the influence of biochemical and biomechanical cues on the growth and interaction of neuronal cells with surrounding guidance factors. Specifically, we use AFM topography and AFM force spectroscopy measurements to systematically investigate the morphology, elasticity, and real time growth of neuronal processes in the presence of different types of extracellular matrix proteins and growth factors. We therefore create a series of systems containing specified neuron densities where the type of the underlying growth promoting protein is different from sample to sample. For each system we measure key biomechanical parameters related to neuronal growth such as height and elastic modulus at multiple growth points on several types of neurons. We show that systematic measurements of these parameters yield fundamental information about the role played by substrate-plated guidance factors in determining elastic and morphological properties of neurons during growth.

  10. Bonded semiconductor substrate

    DOEpatents

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

    2010-07-13

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

  11. Fossil Fuels.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crank, Ron

    This instructional unit is one of 10 developed by students on various energy-related areas that deals specifically with fossil fuels. Some topics covered are historic facts, development of fuels, history of oil production, current and future trends of the oil industry, refining fossil fuels, and environmental problems. Material in each unit may…

  12. Biaxially textured composite substrates

    DOEpatents

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

    2005-04-26

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-03-01

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

  14. Alternative fuels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grobman, J. S.; Butze, H. F.; Friedman, R.; Antoine, A. C.; Reynolds, T. W.

    1977-01-01

    Potential problems related to the use of alternative aviation turbine fuels are discussed and both ongoing and required research into these fuels is described. This discussion is limited to aviation turbine fuels composed of liquid hydrocarbons. The advantages and disadvantages of the various solutions to the problems are summarized. The first solution is to continue to develop the necessary technology at the refinery to produce specification jet fuels regardless of the crude source. The second solution is to minimize energy consumption at the refinery and keep fuel costs down by relaxing specifications.

  15. Multiple alternative substrate kinetics.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Vernon E

    2015-11-01

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

  16. Multiple alternative substrate kinetics.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Vernon E

    2015-11-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

    Kueper, T.W.

    1992-05-01

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

  18. A Simplified Method for Ultra-Low Density, Long-Term Primary Hippocampal Neuron Culture.

    PubMed

    Lu, Zhongming; Piechowicz, Mariel; Qiu, Shenfeng

    2016-01-01

    Culturing primary hippocampal neurons in vitro facilitates mechanistic interrogation of many aspects of neuronal development. Dissociated embryonic hippocampal neurons can often grow successfully on glass coverslips at high density under serum-free conditions, but low density cultures typically require a supply of trophic factors by co-culturing them with a glia feeder layer, preparation of which can be time-consuming and laborious. In addition, the presence of glia may confound interpretation of results and preclude studies on neuron-specific mechanisms. Here, a simplified method is presented for ultra-low density (~2,000 neurons/cm2), long-term (>3 months) primary hippocampal neuron culture that is under serum free conditions and without glia cell support. Low density neurons are grown on poly-D-lysine coated coverslips, and flipped on high density neurons grown in a 24-well plate. Instead of using paraffin dots to create a space between the two neuronal layers, the experimenters can simply etch the plastic bottom of the well, on which the high density neurons reside, to create a microspace conducive to low density neuron growth. The co-culture can be easily maintained for >3 months without significant loss of low density neurons, thus facilitating the morphological and physiological study of these neurons. To illustrate this successful culture condition, data are provided to show profuse synapse formation in low density cells after prolonged culture. This co-culture system also facilitates the survival of sparse individual neurons grown in islands of poly-D-lysine substrates and thus the formation of autaptic connections. PMID:27022758

  19. Substrate system for spray forming

    DOEpatents

    Chu, Men G.; Chernicoff, William P.

    2002-01-01

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

  20. Substrate system for spray forming

    DOEpatents

    Chu, Men G.; Chernicoff, William P.

    2000-01-01

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

  1. Neuronal synchrony: peculiarity and generality.

    PubMed

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

    2008-09-01

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

  2. RNA Protein Interaction in Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Darnell, Robert B.

    2013-01-01

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

  3. Add neurons, subtract anxiety

    PubMed Central

    Kheirbek, Mazen A.; Hen, René

    2014-01-01

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

  4. Adhesion to carbon nanotube conductive scaffolds forces action-potential appearance in immature rat spinal neurons.

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

  5. Single neuron modeling and data assimilation in BNST neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farsian, Reza

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

  6. Investigation of mitochondrial dysfunction by sequential microplate-based respiration measurements from intact and permeabilized neurons.

    PubMed

    Clerc, Pascaline; Polster, Brian M

    2012-01-01

    Mitochondrial dysfunction is a component of many neurodegenerative conditions. Measurement of oxygen consumption from intact neurons enables evaluation of mitochondrial bioenergetics under conditions that are more physiologically realistic compared to isolated mitochondria. However, mechanistic analysis of mitochondrial function in cells is complicated by changing energy demands and lack of substrate control. Here we describe a technique for sequentially measuring respiration from intact and saponin-permeabilized cortical neurons on single microplates. This technique allows control of substrates to individual electron transport chain complexes following permeabilization, as well as side-by-side comparisons to intact cells. To illustrate the utility of the technique, we demonstrate that inhibition of respiration by the drug KB-R7943 in intact neurons is relieved by delivery of the complex II substrate succinate, but not by complex I substrates, via acute saponin permeabilization. In contrast, methyl succinate, a putative cell permeable complex II substrate, failed to rescue respiration in intact neurons and was a poor complex II substrate in permeabilized cells. Sequential measurements of intact and permeabilized cell respiration should be particularly useful for evaluating indirect mitochondrial toxicity due to drugs or cellular signaling events which cannot be readily studied using isolated mitochondria.

  7. FGF-2 induces neuronal death through upregulation of system xc-.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiaoqian; Albano, Rebecca; Lobner, Doug

    2014-02-14

    The cystine/glutamate antiporter (system xc-) transports cystine into cell in exchange for glutamate. Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) upregulates system xc- selectively on astrocytes, which leads to increased cystine uptake, the substrate for glutathione production, and increased glutamate release. While increased intracellular glutathione can limit oxidative stress, the increased glutamate release can potentially lead to excitotoxicity to neurons. To test this hypothesis, mixed neuronal and glial cortical cultures were treated with FGF-2. Treatment with FGF-2 for 48 h caused a significant neuronal death in these cultures. Cell death was not observed in neuronal-enriched cultures, or astrocyte-enriched cultures, suggesting the toxicity was the result of neuron-glia interaction. Blocking system xc- eliminated the neuronal death as did the AMPA/kainate receptor antagonist 2,3-dihydroxy-6-nitro-7-sulfamoyl-benzo[f]quinoxaline-2,3-dione (NBQX), but not the NMDA receptor antagonist memantine. When cultures were exposed directly to glutamate, both NBQX and memantine blocked the neuronal toxicity. The mechanism of this altered profile of glutamate receptor mediated toxicity by FGF-2 is unclear. The selective calcium permeable AMPA receptor antagonist 1-naphthyl acetyl spermine (NASPM) failed to offer protection. The most likely explanation for the results is that 48 h FGF-2 treatment induces AMPA/kainate receptor toxicity through increased system xc- function resulting in increased release of glutamate. At the same time, FGF-2 alters the sensitivity of the neurons to glutamate toxicity in a manner that promotes selective AMPA/kainate receptor mediated toxicity.

  8. Regulation of neuronal input transformations by tunable dendritic inhibition.

    PubMed

    Lovett-Barron, Matthew; Turi, Gergely F; Kaifosh, Patrick; Lee, Peter H; Bolze, Frédéric; Sun, Xiao-Hua; Nicoud, Jean-François; Zemelman, Boris V; Sternson, Scott M; Losonczy, Attila

    2012-03-01

    Transforming synaptic input into action potential output is a fundamental function of neurons. The pattern of action potential output from principal cells of the mammalian hippocampus encodes spatial and nonspatial information, but the cellular and circuit mechanisms by which neurons transform their synaptic input into a given output are unknown. Using a combination of optical activation and cell type-specific pharmacogenetic silencing in vitro, we found that dendritic inhibition is the primary regulator of input-output transformations in mouse hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells, and acts by gating the dendritic electrogenesis driving burst spiking. Dendrite-targeting interneurons are themselves modulated by interneurons targeting pyramidal cell somata, providing a synaptic substrate for tuning pyramidal cell output through interactions in the local inhibitory network. These results provide evidence for a division of labor in cortical circuits, where distinct computational functions are implemented by subtypes of local inhibitory neurons. PMID:22246433

  9. Endocannabinoid functions controlling neuronal specification during brain development.

    PubMed

    Harkany, Tibor; Keimpema, Erik; Barabás, Klaudia; Mulder, Jan

    2008-04-16

    Endocannabinoids (eCBs) regulate a broad range of physiological functions in the postnatal brain and are implicated in the neuropathogenesis of psychiatric and metabolic diseases. Accumulating evidence indicates that eCB signaling also serves key functions during neurodevelopment; and is inherently involved in the control of neurogenesis, neural progenitor proliferation, lineage segregation, and the migration and phenotypic specification of immature neurons. Recent advances in developmental biology define fundamental eCB-driven cellular mechanisms that also contribute to our understanding of the molecular substrates of prenatal drug, in particular cannabis, actions. Here, we summarize known organizing principles of eCB-signaling systems in the developing telencephalon, and outline the sequence of decision points and underlying signaling pathways upon CB1 cannabinoid receptor activation that contribute to neuronal diversification in the developing brain. Finally, we discuss how these novel principles affect the formation of complex neuronal networks.

  10. Electrocatalyst for alcohol oxidation in fuel cells

    DOEpatents

    Adzic, Radoslav R.; Marinkovic, Nebojsa S.

    2001-01-01

    Binary and ternary electrocatalysts are provided for oxidizing alcohol in a fuel cell. The binary electrocatalyst includes 1) a substrate selected from the group consisting of NiWO.sub.4 or CoWO.sub.4 or a combination thereof, and 2) Group VIII noble metal catalyst supported on the substrate. The ternary electrocatalyst includes 1) a substrate as described above, and 2) a catalyst comprising Group VIII noble metal, and ruthenium oxide or molybdenum oxide or a combination thereof, said catalyst being supported on said substrate.

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

    PubMed

    Mishchenko, Yuriy

    2016-10-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Mishchenko, Yuriy

    2016-10-01

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

  13. Biodesulfurization of fossil fuels.

    PubMed

    Gray, Kevin A; Mrachko, Gregory T; Squires, Charles H

    2003-06-01

    Biotechnological techniques enabling the specific removal of sulfur from fossil fuels have been developed. In the past three years there have been important advances in the elucidation of the mechanisms of biodesulfurization; some of the most significant relate to the role of a flavin reductase, DszD, in the enzymology of desulfurization, and to the use of new tools that enable enzyme enhancement via DNA manipulation to influence both the rate and the substrate range of Dsz. Also, a clearer understanding of the unique desulfinase step in the pathway has begun to emerge.

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

    PubMed Central

    Hernández, Vivian M.; Hegeman, Daniel J.; Cui, Qiaoling; Kelver, Daniel A.; Fiske, Michael P.; Glajch, Kelly E.; Pitt, Jason E.; Huang, Tina Y.; Justice, Nicholas J.

    2015-01-01

    Compelling evidence suggests that pathological activity of the external globus pallidus (GPe), a nucleus in the basal ganglia, contributes to the motor symptoms of a variety of movement disorders such as Parkinson's disease. Recent studies have challenged the idea that the GPe comprises a single, homogenous population of neurons that serves as a simple relay in the indirect pathway. However, we still lack a full understanding of the diversity of the neurons that make up the GPe. Specifically, a more precise classification scheme is needed to better describe the fundamental biology and function of different GPe neuron classes. To this end, we generated a novel multicistronic BAC (bacterial artificial chromosome) transgenic mouse line under the regulatory elements of the Npas1 gene. Using a combinatorial transgenic and immunohistochemical approach, we discovered that parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons in the GPe represent two nonoverlapping cell classes, amounting to 55% and 27% of the total GPe neuron population, respectively. These two genetically identified cell classes projected primarily to the subthalamic nucleus and to the striatum, respectively. Additionally, parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons were distinct in their autonomous and driven firing characteristics, their expression of intrinsic ion conductances, and their responsiveness to chronic 6-hydroxydopamine lesion. In summary, our data argue that parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons are two distinct functional classes of GPe neurons. This work revises our understanding of the GPe, and provides the foundation for future studies of its function and dysfunction. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Until recently, the heterogeneity of the constituent neurons within the external globus pallidus (GPe) was not fully appreciated. We addressed this knowledge gap by discovering two principal GPe neuron classes, which were identified by their nonoverlapping

  15. Metabolic reprogramming during neuronal differentiation.

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-01

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

  16. Metabolic reprogramming during neuronal differentiation

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  17. Fuel cells 101

    SciTech Connect

    Hirschenhofer, J.H.

    1999-07-01

    This paper discusses the various types of fuel cells, the importance of cell voltage, fuel processing for natural gas, cell stacking, fuel cell plant description, advantages and disadvantages of the types of fuel cells, and applications. The types covered include: polymer electrolyte fuel cell, alkaline fuel cell, phosphoric acid fuel cell; molten carbonate fuel cell, and solid oxide fuel cell.

  18. Fatty acid biosynthesis from glutamate and glutamine is specifically induced in neuronal cells under hypoxia.

    PubMed

    Brose, Stephen A; Marquardt, Amanda L; Golovko, Mikhail Y

    2014-05-01

    Hypoxia is involved in many neuronal and non-neuronal diseases, and defining the mechanisms for tissue adaptation to hypoxia is critical for the understanding and treatment of these diseases. One mechanism for tissue adaptation to hypoxia is increased glutamine and/or glutamate (Gln/Glu) utilization. To address this mechanism, we determined incorporation of Gln/Glu and other lipogenic substrates into lipids and fatty acids in both primary neurons and a neuronal cell line under normoxic and hypoxic conditions and compared this to non-neuronal primary cells and non-neuronal cell lines. Incorporation of Gln/Glu into total lipids was dramatically and specifically increased under hypoxia in neuronal cells including both primary (2.0- and 3.0-fold for Gln and Glu, respectively) and immortalized cultures (3.5- and 8.0-fold for Gln and Glu, respectively), and 90% to 97% of this increase was accounted for by incorporation into fatty acids (FA) depending upon substrate and cell type. All other non-neuronal cells tested demonstrated decreased or unchanged FA synthesis from Gln/Glu under hypoxia. Consistent with these data, total FA mass was also increased in neuronal cells under hypoxia that was mainly accounted for by the increase in saturated and monounsaturated FA with carbon length from 14 to 24. Incorporation of FA synthesized from Gln/Glu was increased in all major lipid classes including cholesteryl esters, triacylglycerols, diacylglycerols, free FA, and phospholipids, with the highest rate of incorporation into triacylglycerols. These results indicate that increased FA biosynthesis from Gln/Glu followed by esterification may be a neuronal specific pathway for adaptation to hypoxia. We identified a novel neuronal specific pathway for adaptation to hypoxia through increased fatty acid biosynthesis from glutamine and glutamate (Gln/Glu) followed by esterification into lipids. All other non-neuronal cells tested demonstrated decreased or unchanged lipid synthesis from Gln

  19. Neocortical neurogenesis and neuronal migration

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Xin; Shi, Song-Hai

    2012-01-01

    The neocortex, the evolutionarily newest part of the cerebral cortex, controls nearly all aspects of behavior, including perception, language and decision-making. It contains an immense number of neurons that can be broadly divided into two groups, excitatory neurons and inhibitory interneurons. These neurons are predominantly produced through extensive progenitor cell divisions during the embryonic stages. Moreover, they are not randomly dispersed, but spatially organized into horizontal layers that are essential for neocortex function. The formation of this laminar structure requires exquisite control of neuronal migration from their birthplace to their final destination. Extensive research over the past decade has greatly advanced our understanding of the production and migration of both excitatory neurons and inhibitory interneurons in the developing neocortex. In this review, we aim to give an overview on the molecular and cellular processes of neocortical neurogenesis and neuronal migration. PMID:24014417

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  1. Microbes' roadmap to neurons.

    PubMed

    Kristensson, Krister

    2011-06-01

    The nervous system is protected by barriers that restrict the invasion of pathogens. Nevertheless, mechanisms have evolved by which microbes can pass these barriers, enter and exit neurons and target various regions of the nervous system. In the brain, immune responses to pathogens are generally not robust, so microbes can hide and survive or, conversely, cause severe uncontrolled infections. Depending on their sites of entry and the regions that they target, microbes can cause diverse nervous system dysfunctions and even influence host behaviour to their own advantage. This Review discusses routes by which microbes can reach the nervous system and cause persistent or life-threatening infections.

  2. Fertilizer effects on annual growth in sweetgum, hickory, and cedar substrates

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Expanded perlite has long been used as an amendment in container mediums because of its ability to add air space to container substrates without adding to bulk density or affecting substrate pH and EC. However, due to increased restrictions on the harvesting of peat, as well as fluctuations in fuel...

  3. The straintronic spin-neuron.

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-17

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

  4. The straintronic spin-neuron.

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-17

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

  5. The biophysics of neuronal growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franze, Kristian; Guck, Jochen

    2010-09-01

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

  6. Fuel injector

    DOEpatents

    Lambeth, Malcolm David Dick

    2001-02-27

    A fuel injector comprises first and second housing parts, the first housing part being located within a bore or recess formed in the second housing part, the housing parts defining therebetween an inlet chamber, a delivery chamber axially spaced from the inlet chamber, and a filtration flow path interconnecting the inlet and delivery chambers to remove particulate contaminants from the flow of fuel therebetween.

  7. Amyloid beta modulation of neuronal network activity in vitro.

    PubMed

    Charkhkar, Hamid; Meyyappan, Susheela; Matveeva, Evgenia; Moll, Jonathan R; McHail, Daniel G; Peixoto, Nathalia; Cliff, Richard O; Pancrazio, Joseph J

    2015-12-10

    In vitro assays offer a means of screening potential therapeutics and accelerating the drug development process. Here, we utilized neuronal cultures on planar microelectrode arrays (MEA) as a functional assay to assess the neurotoxicity of amyloid-β 1-42 (Aβ42), a biomolecule implicated in the Alzheimer׳s disease (AD). In this approach, neurons harvested from embryonic mice were seeded on the substrate-integrated microelectrode arrays. The cultured neurons form a spontaneously active network, and the spiking activity as a functional endpoint could be detected via the MEA. Aβ42 oligomer, but not monomer, significantly reduced network spike rate. In addition, we demonstrated that the ionotropic glutamate receptors, NMDA and AMPA/kainate, play a role in the effects of Aβ42 on neuronal activity in vitro. To examine the utility of the MEA-based assay for AD drug discovery, we tested two model therapeutics for AD, methylene blue (MB) and memantine. Our results show an almost full recovery in the activity within 24h after administration of Aβ42 in the cultures pre-treated with either MB or memantine. Our findings suggest that cultured neuronal networks may be a useful platform in screening potential therapeutics for Aβ induced changes in neurological function.

  8. Amyloid beta modulation of neuronal network activity in vitro.

    PubMed

    Charkhkar, Hamid; Meyyappan, Susheela; Matveeva, Evgenia; Moll, Jonathan R; McHail, Daniel G; Peixoto, Nathalia; Cliff, Richard O; Pancrazio, Joseph J

    2015-12-10

    In vitro assays offer a means of screening potential therapeutics and accelerating the drug development process. Here, we utilized neuronal cultures on planar microelectrode arrays (MEA) as a functional assay to assess the neurotoxicity of amyloid-β 1-42 (Aβ42), a biomolecule implicated in the Alzheimer׳s disease (AD). In this approach, neurons harvested from embryonic mice were seeded on the substrate-integrated microelectrode arrays. The cultured neurons form a spontaneously active network, and the spiking activity as a functional endpoint could be detected via the MEA. Aβ42 oligomer, but not monomer, significantly reduced network spike rate. In addition, we demonstrated that the ionotropic glutamate receptors, NMDA and AMPA/kainate, play a role in the effects of Aβ42 on neuronal activity in vitro. To examine the utility of the MEA-based assay for AD drug discovery, we tested two model therapeutics for AD, methylene blue (MB) and memantine. Our results show an almost full recovery in the activity within 24h after administration of Aβ42 in the cultures pre-treated with either MB or memantine. Our findings suggest that cultured neuronal networks may be a useful platform in screening potential therapeutics for Aβ induced changes in neurological function. PMID:26453830

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

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

  10. A simplified micropatterning method for straight-line neurite extension of cultured hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Ikuro; Nakamura, Kosuke; Odawara, Aoi; Alhebshi, Amani; Gotoh, Masao

    2013-01-01

    We report a simplified micropatterning method for the straight-line extension of the neurites of cultured neurons. We prepared a poly-D-lysine (PDL)-patterned surface using a polydimethylsiloxane microfluidic stamp. Hippocampal neurons were cultured on the PDL-bound substrate with the stamp removed, allowing for conventional cell seeding and detailed optical observation without fluorescent label. Cultured neurons elongated neurites along straight lines at the single-cell level and displayed spontaneous firing as detected by time-lapse imaging and Ca(2+) imaging.

  11. History-dependent excitability as a single-cell substrate of transient memory for information discrimination.

    PubMed

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

    2010-12-28

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  13. Nuclear fuel elements having a composite cladding

    DOEpatents

    Gordon, Gerald M.; Cowan, II, Robert L.; Davies, John H.

    1983-09-20

    An improved nuclear fuel element is disclosed for use in the core of nuclear reactors. The improved nuclear fuel element has a composite cladding of an outer portion forming a substrate having on the inside surface a metal layer selected from the group consisting of copper, nickel, iron and alloys of the foregoing with a gap between the composite cladding and the core of nuclear fuel. The nuclear fuel element comprises a container of the elongated composite cladding, a central core of a body of nuclear fuel material disposed in and partially filling the container and forming an internal cavity in the container, an enclosure integrally secured and sealed at each end of said container and a nuclear fuel material retaining means positioned in the cavity. The metal layer of the composite cladding prevents perforations or failures in the cladding substrate from stress corrosion cracking or from fuel pellet-cladding interaction or both. The substrate of the composite cladding is selected from conventional cladding materials and preferably is a zirconium alloy.

  14. Assessing Neuronal Bioenergetic Status

    PubMed Central

    Zeiger, Stephanie L.H.; Stankowski, Jeannette N.; McLaughlin, BethAnn

    2013-01-01

    Drug discovery and therapeutic development for disorders of the central nervous system (CNS) represents one of the largest unmet markets in modern medicine. We have increasingly recognized that the lack of stringent assessment of mitochondrial function during the discovery process has resulted in drug recalls, black box warnings, and an urgent need to understand the metabolic liability of small molecules in neural systems. Given that the brain is the most energetically demanding organ, even modest perturbations in neuronal energetic pathways have been shown to impact growth, signaling, connectivity, and the restorative capacity of the CNS. In this work, we describe several tools to assess metabolic activity of primary neuronal cultures and neural cell lines using an acute model of injury induced by oxygen glucose deprivation. Methods include the measurement of total ATP and NADH, enzymatic assessment of lactate production by anaerobic respiration, as well as viability assays. We also present a modified screening method for assessing aerobic respiration of immortalized cell lines using galactose challenge. PMID:21815069

  15. Assessing neuronal bioenergetic status.

    PubMed

    Zeiger, Stephanie L H; Stankowski, Jeannette N; McLaughlin, BethAnn

    2011-01-01

    Drug discovery and therapeutic development for disorders of the central nervous system (CNS) represents one of the largest unmet markets in modern medicine. We have increasingly recognized that the lack of stringent assessment of mitochondrial function during the discovery process has resulted in drug recalls, black box warnings, and an urgent need to understand the metabolic liability of small molecules in neural systems. Given that the brain is the most energetically demanding organ, even modest perturbations in neuronal energetic pathways have been shown to impact growth, signaling, connectivity, and the restorative capacity of the CNS. In this work, we describe several tools to assess metabolic activity of primary neuronal cultures and neural cell lines using an acute model of injury induced by oxygen glucose deprivation. Methods include the measurement of total ATP and NADH, enzymatic assessment of lactate production by anaerobic respiration, as well as viability assays. We also present a modified screening method for assessing aerobic respiration of immortalized cell lines using galactose challenge.

  16. Nitrification in a zeoponic substrate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2003-01-01

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

  17. Fuel cell-fuel cell hybrid system

    DOEpatents

    Geisbrecht, Rodney A.; Williams, Mark C.

    2003-09-23

    A device for converting chemical energy to electricity is provided, the device comprising a high temperature fuel cell with the ability for partially oxidizing and completely reforming fuel, and a low temperature fuel cell juxtaposed to said high temperature fuel cell so as to utilize remaining reformed fuel from the high temperature fuel cell. Also provided is a method for producing electricity comprising directing fuel to a first fuel cell, completely oxidizing a first portion of the fuel and partially oxidizing a second portion of the fuel, directing the second fuel portion to a second fuel cell, allowing the first fuel cell to utilize the first portion of the fuel to produce electricity; and allowing the second fuel cell to utilize the second portion of the fuel to produce electricity.

  18. Maintainable substrate carrier for electroplating

    DOEpatents

    Chen, Chen-An; Abas, Emmanuel Chua; Divino, Edmundo Anida; Ermita, Jake Randal G.; Capulong, Jose Francisco S.; Castillo, Arnold Villamor; Ma, Diana Xiaobing

    2016-08-02

    One embodiment relates to a substrate carrier for use in electroplating a plurality of substrates. The carrier includes a non-conductive carrier body on which the substrates are placed and conductive lines embedded within the carrier body. A plurality of conductive clip attachment parts are attached in a permanent manner to the conductive lines embedded within the carrier body. A plurality of contact clips are attached in a removable manner to the clip attachment parts. The contact clips hold the substrates in place and conductively connecting the substrates with the conductive lines. Other embodiments, aspects and features are also disclosed.

  19. Maintainable substrate carrier for electroplating

    DOEpatents

    Chen, Chen-An; Abas, Emmanuel Chua; Divino, Edmundo Anida; Ermita, Jake Randal G.; Capulong, Jose Francisco S.; Castillo, Arnold Villamor; Ma; Diana Xiaobing

    2012-07-17

    One embodiment relates to a substrate carrier for use in electroplating a plurality of substrates. The carrier includes a non-conductive carrier body on which the substrates are placed and conductive lines embedded within the carrier body. A plurality of conductive clip attachment parts are attached in a permanent manner to the conductive lines embedded within the carrier body. A plurality of contact clips are attached in a removable manner to the clip attachment parts. The contact clips hold the substrates in place and conductively connecting the substrates with the conductive lines. Other embodiments, aspects and features are also disclosed.

  20. Synchronization by elastic neuronal latencies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  1. The Neuronal Ceroid-Lipofuscinoses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bennett, Michael J.; Rakheja, Dinesh

    2013-01-01

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

  2. The straintronic spin-neuron

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-07-01

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

  3. Cryopreservation of adherent neuronal networks.

    PubMed

    Ma, Wu; O'Shaughnessy, Thomas; Chang, Eddie

    2006-07-31

    Neuronal networks have been widely used for neurophysiology, drug discovery and toxicity testing. An essential prerequisite for future widespread application of neuronal networks is the development of efficient cryopreservation protocols to facilitate their storage and transportation. Here is the first report on cryopreservation of mammalian adherent neuronal networks. Dissociated spinal cord cells were attached to a poly-d-lysine/laminin surface and allowed to form neuronal networks. Adherent neuronal networks were embedded in a thin film of collagen gel and loaded with trehalose prior to transfer to a freezing medium containing DMSO, FBS and culture medium. This was followed by a slow rate of cooling to -80 degrees C for 24 h and then storage for up to 2 months in liquid nitrogen at -196 degrees C. The three components: DMSO, collagen gel entrapment and trehalose loading combined provided the highest post-thaw viability, relative to individual or two component protocols. The post-thaw cells with this protocol demonstrated similar neuronal and astrocytic markers and morphological structure as those detected in unfrozen cells. Fluorescent dye FM1-43 staining revealed active recycling of synaptic vesicles upon depolarizing stimulation in the post-thaw neuronal networks. These results suggest that a combination of DMSO, collagen gel entrapment and trehalose loading can significantly improve conventional slow-cooling methods in cryopreservation of adherent neuronal networks.

  4. FUEL ELEMENT

    DOEpatents

    Bean, R.W.

    1963-11-19

    A ceramic fuel element for a nuclear reactor that has improved structural stability as well as improved cooling and fission product retention characteristics is presented. The fuel element includes a plurality of stacked hollow ceramic moderator blocks arranged along a tubular raetallic shroud that encloses a series of axially apertured moderator cylinders spaced inwardly of the shroud. A plurality of ceramic nuclear fuel rods are arranged in the annular space between the shroud and cylinders of moderator and appropriate support means and means for directing gas coolant through the annular space are also provided. (AEC)

  5. Fuel ethanol

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1989-02-01

    This report discusses the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 which requires GAO to examine fuel ethanol imports from Central America and the Caribbean and their impact on the U.S. fuel ethanol industry. Ethanol is the alcohol in beverages, such as beer, wine, and whiskey. It can also be used as a fuel by blending with gasoline. It can be made from renewable resources, such as corn, wheat, grapes, and sugarcane, through a process of fermentation. This report finds that, given current sugar and gasoline prices, it is not economically feasible for Caribbean ethanol producers to meet the current local feedstock requirement.

  6. More questions for mirror neurons.

    PubMed

    Borg, Emma

    2013-09-01

    The mirror neuron system is widely held to provide direct access to the motor goals of others. This paper critically investigates this idea, focusing on the so-called 'intentional worry'. I explore two answers to the intentional worry: first that the worry is premised on too limited an understanding of mirror neuron behaviour (Sections 2 and 3), second that the appeal made to mirror neurons can be refined in such a way as to avoid the worry (Section 4). I argue that the first response requires an account of the mechanism by which small-scale gestures are supposedly mapped to larger chains of actions but that none of the extant accounts of this mechanism are plausible. Section 4 then briefly examines refinements of the mirror neuron-mindreading hypothesis which avoid the intentional worry. I conclude that these refinements may well be plausible but that they undermine many of the claims standardly made for mirror neurons.

  7. Neuron's function revealed

    SciTech Connect

    2009-01-01

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

  8. [Neurons and values].

    PubMed

    Camps, Victoria

    2013-09-01

    This article examines the advances made by neuroscience in the attempt to find an answer to the question regarding the origin and foundation of moral judgements and of human behaviour in compliance with them. The conception of the brain as something dynamic and capable of adapting to the social and cultural surroundings is seen to be an important point for philosophy. At the same time, the complexity of ethical issues that cannot be reduced to observations based strictly on neurons alone also becomes quite apparent. Nevertheless, scientists and philosophers should get together and communicate with one another so as to be able to pose their questions with greater rigour and take advantage of each other's respective knowledge.

  9. Neuronal cell lines as model dorsal root ganglion neurons

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Kathleen; Baillie, Gregory J

    2016-01-01

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

  10. Substrate inhibition of transketolase.

    PubMed

    Solovjeva, Olga N; Kovina, Marina V; Kochetov, German A

    2016-03-01

    We studied the influence of the acceptor substrate of transketolase on the activity of the enzyme in the presence of reductants. Ribose-5-phosphate in the presence of cyanoborohydride decreased the transketolase catalytic activity. The inhibition is caused by the loss of catalytic function of the coenzyme-thiamine diphosphate. Similar inhibitory effect was observed in the presence of NADPH. This could indicate its possible regulatory role not only towards transketolase, but also towards the pentose phosphate pathway of carbohydrate metabolism overall, taking into account the fact that it inhibits not only transketolase but also another enzyme of the pentose phosphate pathway--glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase [Eggleston L.V., Krebs H.A. Regulation of the pentose phosphate cycle, Biochem. J. 138 (1974) 425-435]. PMID:26708478

  11. Systematic substrate identification indicates a central role for the metalloprotease ADAM10 in axon targeting and synapse function

    PubMed Central

    Kuhn, Peer-Hendrik; Colombo, Alessio Vittorio; Schusser, Benjamin; Dreymueller, Daniela; Wetzel, Sebastian; Schepers, Ute; Herber, Julia; Ludwig, Andreas; Kremmer, Elisabeth; Montag, Dirk; Müller, Ulrike; Schweizer, Michaela; Saftig, Paul; Bräse, Stefan; Lichtenthaler, Stefan F

    2016-01-01

    Metzincin metalloproteases have major roles in intercellular communication by modulating the function of membrane proteins. One of the proteases is the a-disintegrin-and-metalloprotease 10 (ADAM10) which acts as alpha-secretase of the Alzheimer's disease amyloid precursor protein. ADAM10 is also required for neuronal network functions in murine brain, but neuronal ADAM10 substrates are only partly known. With a proteomic analysis of Adam10-deficient neurons we identified 91, mostly novel ADAM10 substrate candidates, making ADAM10 a major protease for membrane proteins in the nervous system. Several novel substrates, including the neuronal cell adhesion protein NrCAM, are involved in brain development. Indeed, we detected mistargeted axons in the olfactory bulb of conditional ADAM10-/- mice, which correlate with reduced cleavage of NrCAM, NCAM and other ADAM10 substrates. In summary, the novel ADAM10 substrates provide a molecular basis for neuronal network dysfunctions in conditional ADAM10-/- mice and demonstrate a fundamental function of ADAM10 in the brain. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.12748.001 PMID:26802628

  12. CB1 cannabinoid receptor in SF1-expressing neurons of the ventromedial hypothalamus determines metabolic responses to diet and leptin.

    PubMed

    Cardinal, Pierre; André, Caroline; Quarta, Carmelo; Bellocchio, Luigi; Clark, Samantha; Elie, Melissa; Leste-Lasserre, Thierry; Maitre, Marlene; Gonzales, Delphine; Cannich, Astrid; Pagotto, Uberto; Marsicano, Giovanni; Cota, Daniela

    2014-10-01

    Metabolic flexibility allows rapid adaptation to dietary change, however, little is known about the CNS mechanisms regulating this process. Neurons in the hypothalamic ventromedial nucleus (VMN) participate in energy balance and are the target of the metabolically relevant hormone leptin. Cannabinoid type-1 (CB1) receptors are expressed in VMN neurons, but the specific contribution of endocannabinoid signaling in this neuronal population to energy balance regulation is unknown. Here we demonstrate that VMN CB1 receptors regulate metabolic flexibility and actions of leptin. In chow-fed mice, conditional deletion of CB1 in VMN neurons (expressing the steroidogenic factor 1, SF1) decreases adiposity by increasing sympathetic activity and lipolysis, and facilitates metabolic effects of leptin. Conversely, under high-fat diet, lack of CB1 in VMN neurons produces leptin resistance, blunts peripheral use of lipid substrates and increases adiposity. Thus, CB1 receptors in VMN neurons provide a molecular switch adapting the organism to dietary change.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-06-01

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

  14. Fuel composition

    SciTech Connect

    Badger, S.L.

    1983-09-20

    A composition useful, inter alia, as a fuel, is based on ethyl alcohol denatured with methylisobutyl alcohol and kerosene, which is mixed with xylenes and isopropyl alcohol. The xylenes and isopropyl alcohol act with the denaturizing agents to raise the flash point above that of ethyl alcohol alone and also to mask the odor and color the flame, thus making the composition safer for use as a charcoal lighter or as a fuel for e.g. patio lamps.

  15. Calcium, iron and neuronal function.

    PubMed

    Hidalgo, Cecilia; Núñez, Marco T

    2007-01-01

    Calcium and iron play dual roles in neuronal function: they are both essential but when present in excess they cause neuronal damage and may even induce neuronal death. Calcium signals are required for synaptic plasticity, a neuronal process that entails gene expression and which is presumably the cellular counterpart of cognitive brain functions such as learning and memory. Neuronal activity generates cytoplasmic and nuclear calcium signals that in turn stimulate pathways that promote the transcription of genes known to participate in synaptic plasticity. In addition, evidence discussed in this article shows that iron deficiency causes learning and memory impairments that persist following iron repletion, indicating that iron is necessary for normal development of cognitive functions. Recent results from our group indicate that iron is required for long-term potentiation in hippocampal CA1 neurons and that iron stimulates ryanodine receptor-mediated calcium release through ROS produced via the Fenton reaction leading to stimulation of the ERK signaling pathway. These combined results support a coordinated action between iron and calcium in synaptic plasticity and raise the possibility that elevated iron levels may contribute to neuronal degeneration through excessive intracellular calcium increase caused by iron-induced oxidative stress. PMID:17505966

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  18. Structural properties of the Caenorhabditis elegans neuronal network.

    PubMed

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

    2011-02-03

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

  19. Influence of human skin injury on regeneration of sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Taherzadeh, O; Otto, W R; Anand, U; Nanchahal, J; Anand, P

    2003-06-01

    The regeneration of sensory nerve fibres is regulated by trophic factors released from their target tissue, particularly the basal epidermis, and matrix molecules. Means to modulate this response may be useful for the treatment of neuromas and painful hypertrophic scars and of sensory deficits in skin grafts and flaps. We have developed an in vitro model of sensory neuron regeneration on human skin in order to study the mechanisms of sensory dysfunction in pathological conditions. Adult rat sensory neurons were co-cultured with unfixed cryosections of normal or injured (crushed) human skin for 72 h. Neurons were immunostained for growth-associated protein-43 and the neurite lengths of neuronal cell bodies situated in various skin regions were measured. Two-way analysis of variance was performed. Neurites of sensory cell bodies on epidermis of normal skin were the shortest, with a mean +/- SEM of 75+/-10 micrometer, whereas those of cells on the dermo-epidermal junction were the longest, with a mean +/- SEM of 231+/-18 micrometer. Neurons on the dermo-epidermal junction of injured skin had significantly longer neurites than those on the same region of normal skin (mean +/- SEM = 289+/-21 micrometer). Regeneration of sensory neurons may be influenced by extracellular matrix molecules, matrix-binding growth factors and trophic factors. Altered substrate or trophic factors in injured skin may explain the increase of neurite lengths. This in vitro model may be useful for studying the molecular mechanisms of sensory recovery and the development of neuropathic pain following peripheral nerve injury.

  20. Towards Automatic Classification of Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Armañanzas, Rubén; Ascoli, Giorgio A.

    2015-01-01

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

  1. Single neuron dynamics and computation.

    PubMed

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

    2014-04-01

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

  2. PLZT capacitor on glass substrate

    DOEpatents

    Fairchild, Manuel Ray; Taylor, Ralph S.; Berlin, Carl W.; Wong, Celine Wk; Ma, Beihai; Balachandran, Uthamalingam

    2016-03-29

    A lead-lanthanum-zirconium-titanate (PLZT) capacitor on a substrate formed of glass. The first metallization layer is deposited on a top side of the substrate to form a first electrode. The dielectric layer of PLZT is deposited over the first metallization layer. The second metallization layer deposited over the dielectric layer to form a second electrode. The glass substrate is advantageous as glass is compatible with an annealing process used to form the capacitor.

  3. PLZT capacitor on glass substrate

    DOEpatents

    Fairchild, M. Ray; Taylor, Ralph S.; Berlin, Carl W.; Wong, Celine W. K.; Ma, Beihai; Balachandran, Uthamalingam

    2016-01-05

    A lead-lanthanum-zirconium-titanate (PLZT) capacitor on a substrate formed of glass. The first metallization layer is deposited on a top side of the substrate to form a first electrode. The dielectric layer of PLZT is deposited over the first metallization layer. The second metallization layer deposited over the dielectric layer to form a second electrode. The glass substrate is advantageous as glass is compatible with an annealing process used to form the capacitor.

  4. Six Networks on a Universal Neuromorphic Computing Substrate

    PubMed Central

    Pfeil, Thomas; Grübl, Andreas; Jeltsch, Sebastian; Müller, Eric; Müller, Paul; Petrovici, Mihai A.; Schmuker, Michael; Brüderle, Daniel; Schemmel, Johannes; Meier, Karlheinz

    2013-01-01

    In this study, we present a highly configurable neuromorphic computing substrate and use it for emulating several types of neural networks. At the heart of this system lies a mixed-signal chip, with analog implementations of neurons and synapses and digital transmission of action potentials. Major advantages of this emulation device, which has been explicitly designed as a universal neural network emulator, are its inherent parallelism and high acceleration factor compared to conventional computers. Its configurability allows the realization of almost arbitrary network topologies and the use of widely varied neuronal and synaptic parameters. Fixed-pattern noise inherent to analog circuitry is reduced by calibration routines. An integrated development environment allows neuroscientists to operate the device without any prior knowledge of neuromorphic circuit design. As a showcase for the capabilities of the system, we describe the successful emulation of six different neural networks which cover a broad spectrum of both structure and functionality. PMID:23423583

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

    PubMed

    Trapp, Stefan; Cork, Simon C

    2015-10-15

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

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

    SciTech Connect

    2010-01-01

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

  7. Pedestal substrate for coated optics

    DOEpatents

    Hale, Layton C.; Malsbury, Terry N.; Patterson, Steven R.

    2001-01-01

    A pedestal optical substrate that simultaneously provides high substrate dynamic stiffness, provides low surface figure sensitivity to mechanical mounting hardware inputs, and constrains surface figure changes caused by optical coatings to be primarily spherical in nature. The pedestal optical substrate includes a disk-like optic or substrate section having a top surface that is coated, a disk-like base section that provides location at which the substrate can be mounted, and a connecting cylindrical section between the base and optics or substrate sections. The connecting cylindrical section may be attached via three spaced legs or members. However, the pedestal optical substrate can be manufactured from a solid piece of material to form a monolith, thus avoiding joints between the sections, or the disk-like base can be formed separately and connected to the connecting section. By way of example, the pedestal optical substrate may be utilized in the fabrication of optics for an extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography imaging system, or in any optical system requiring coated optics and substrates with reduced sensitivity to mechanical mounts.

  8. Sealed substrate carrier for electroplating

    DOEpatents

    Ganti, Kalyana Bhargava

    2012-07-17

    One embodiment relates to a substrate carrier for use in electroplating a plurality of substrates. The substrate carrier includes a non-conductive carrier body on which the substrates are held, and conductive lines are embedded within the carrier body. A conductive bus bar is embedded into a top side of the carrier body and is conductively coupled to the conductive lines. A thermoplastic overmold covers a portion of the bus bar, and there is a plastic-to-plastic bond between the thermoplastic overmold and the non-conductive carrier body. Other embodiments, aspects and features are also disclosed.

  9. Modeling Neuronal Current MRI Signal with Human Neuron

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Qingfei; Jiang, Xia; Chen, Bin; Zhu, Yi; Gao, Jia-Hong

    2010-01-01

    Up to date, no consensus has been achieved regarding the possibility of detecting neuronal currents by MRI (ncMRI) in human brain. To evaluate the detectability of ncMRI, an effective way is to simulate ncMRI signal with the realistic neuronal geometry and electrophysiological processes. Unfortunately, previous realistic ncMRI models are based on rat and monkey neurons. The species difference in neuronal morphology and physiology would prevent these models from simulating the ncMRI signal accurately in human subjects. The aim of the present study is to bridge this gap by establishing a realistic ncMRI model specifically for human cerebral cortex. In this model, the ncMRI signal was simulated using anatomically reconstructed human pyramidal neurons and their biophysical properties. The modeling results showed that the amplitude of ncMRI signal significantly depends on the density of synchronously firing neurons and imaging conditions such as position of imaging voxel, direction of main magnetic field (B0) relative to the cortical surface and echo time. The results indicated that physiologically-evoked ncMRI signal is too weak to be detected (magnitude/phase change ≤ -1.4×10−6/0.02°), but the phase signal induced by spontaneous activity may reach a detectable level (up to 0.2°) in favorable conditions. PMID:21254209

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

    PubMed

    Leite, Sérgio Carvalho; Sousa, Mónica Mendes

    2016-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Leite, Sérgio Carvalho; Sousa, Mónica Mendes

    2016-09-01

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

  12. Cdh1/Hct1-APC is essential for the survival of postmitotic neurons.

    PubMed

    Almeida, Angeles; Bolaños, Juan P; Moreno, Sergio

    2005-09-01

    Cell division at the end of mitosis and G1 is controlled by Cdh1/Hct1, an activator of the E3-ubiquitin ligase anaphase-promoting complex (APC) that promotes the ubiquitylation and degradation of mitotic cyclins and other substrates. Cdh1-APC is active in postmitotic neurons, where it regulates axonal growth and patterning in the developing brain. However, it remains unknown whether Cdh1-APC is involved in preventing cell-cycle progression in terminally differentiated neurons. To address this issue, we used the small hairpin RNA strategy to deplete Cdh1 in postmitotic neurons. We observed that Cdh1 silencing rapidly triggered apoptotic neuronal death. To investigate the underlying mechanism, we focused on cyclin B1, a major Cdh1-APC substrate. Our results demonstrate that Cdh1 is required to prevent the accumulation of cyclin B1 in terminally differentiated neurons. Moreover, by keeping cyclin B1 low, Cdh1 prevented these neurons from entering an aberrant S phase that led to apoptotic cell death. These results provide an explanation for the mechanism of cyclin B1 reactivation that occurs in the brain of patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease.

  13. Glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation in neurons and astrocytes during network activity in hippocampal slices.

    PubMed

    Ivanov, Anton I; Malkov, Anton E; Waseem, Tatsiana; Mukhtarov, Marat; Buldakova, Svetlana; Gubkina, Olena; Zilberter, Misha; Zilberter, Yuri

    2014-03-01

    Network activation triggers a significant energy metabolism increase in both neurons and astrocytes. Questions of the primary neuronal energy substrate (e.g., glucose vs. lactate) as well as the relative contributions of glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation and their cellular origin (neurons vs. astrocytes) are still a matter of debates. Using simultaneous measurements of electrophysiological and metabolic parameters during synaptic stimulation in hippocampal slices from mature mice, we show that neurons and astrocytes use both glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation to meet their energy demands. Supplementation or replacement of glucose in artificial cerebrospinal fluid (ACSF) with pyruvate or lactate strongly modifies parameters related to network activity-triggered energy metabolism. These effects are not induced by changes in ATP content, pH(i), [Ca(2+)](i) or accumulation of reactive oxygen species. Our results suggest that during network activation, a significant fraction of NAD(P)H response (its overshoot phase) corresponds to glycolysis and the changes in cytosolic NAD(P)H and mitochondrial FAD are coupled. Our data do not support the hypothesis of a preferential utilization of astrocyte-released lactate by neurons during network activation in slices--instead, we show that during such activity glucose is an effective energy substrate for both neurons and astrocytes.

  14. State-Dependent Propagation of Neuronal Sub-Population in Spontaneous Synchronized Bursts

    PubMed Central

    Yada, Yuichiro; Kanzaki, Ryohei; Takahashi, Hirokazu

    2016-01-01

    Repeating stable spatiotemporal patterns emerge in synchronized spontaneous activity in neuronal networks. The repertoire of such patterns can serve as memory, or a reservoir of information, in a neuronal network; moreover, the variety of patterns may represent the network memory capacity. However, a neuronal substrate for producing a repertoire of patterns in synchronization remains elusive. We herein hypothesize that state-dependent propagation of a neuronal sub-population is the key mechanism. By combining high-resolution measurement with a 4096-channel complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) microelectrode array (MEA) and dimensionality reduction with non-negative matrix factorization (NMF), we investigated synchronized bursts of dissociated rat cortical neurons at approximately 3 weeks in vitro. We found that bursts had a repertoire of repeating spatiotemporal patterns, and different patterns shared a partially similar sequence of sub-population, supporting the idea of sequential structure of neuronal sub-populations during synchronized activity. We additionally found that similar spatiotemporal patterns tended to appear successively and periodically, suggesting a state-dependent fluctuation of propagation, which has been overlooked in existing literature. Thus, such a state-dependent property within the sequential sub-population structure is a plausible neural substrate for performing a repertoire of stable patterns during synchronized activity. PMID:27065820

  15. 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

  16. Glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation in neurons and astrocytes during network activity in hippocampal slices

    PubMed Central

    Ivanov, Anton I; Malkov, Anton E; Waseem, Tatsiana; Mukhtarov, Marat; Buldakova, Svetlana; Gubkina, Olena; Zilberter, Misha; Zilberter, Yuri

    2014-01-01

    Network activation triggers a significant energy metabolism increase in both neurons and astrocytes. Questions of the primary neuronal energy substrate (e.g., glucose vs. lactate) as well as the relative contributions of glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation and their cellular origin (neurons vs. astrocytes) are still a matter of debates. Using simultaneous measurements of electrophysiological and metabolic parameters during synaptic stimulation in hippocampal slices from mature mice, we show that neurons and astrocytes use both glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation to meet their energy demands. Supplementation or replacement of glucose in artificial cerebrospinal fluid (ACSF) with pyruvate or lactate strongly modifies parameters related to network activity-triggered energy metabolism. These effects are not induced by changes in ATP content, pHi, [Ca2+]i or accumulation of reactive oxygen species. Our results suggest that during network activation, a significant fraction of NAD(P)H response (its overshoot phase) corresponds to glycolysis and the changes in cytosolic NAD(P)H and mitochondrial FAD are coupled. Our data do not support the hypothesis of a preferential utilization of astrocyte-released lactate by neurons during network activation in slices—instead, we show that during such activity glucose is an effective energy substrate for both neurons and astrocytes. PMID:24326389

  17. Tinbergen on mirror neurons.

    PubMed

    Heyes, Cecilia

    2014-01-01

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

  18. Tinbergen on mirror neurons.

    PubMed

    Heyes, Cecilia

    2014-01-01

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

  19. Optical Stimulation of Neurons

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  20. Tinbergen on mirror neurons

    PubMed Central

    Heyes, Cecilia

    2014-01-01

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

  1. Behavioral State Modulates the Activity of Brainstem Sensorimotor Neurons

    PubMed Central

    McArthur, Kimberly L.

    2011-01-01

    Sensorimotor processing must be modulated according to the animal's behavioral state. A previous study demonstrated that motion responses were strongly state dependent in birds. Vestibular eye and head responses were significantly larger and more compensatory during simulated flight, and a flight-specific vestibular tail response was also characterized. In the current study, we investigated the neural substrates for these state-dependent vestibular behaviors by recording extracellularly from neurons in the vestibular nuclear complex and comparing their spontaneous activity and sensory responses during default and simulated flight states. We show that motion-sensitive neurons in the lateral vestibular nucleus are state dependent. Some neurons increased their spontaneous firing rates during flight, though their increased excitability was not reflected in higher sensory gains. However, other neurons exhibited state-dependent gating of sensory inputs, responding to rotational stimuli only during flight. These results demonstrate that vestibular processing in the brainstem is state dependent and lay the foundation for future studies to investigate the synaptic mechanisms responsible for these modifications. PMID:22090497

  2. Programmed to learn? The ontogeny of mirror neurons.

    PubMed

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

    2009-03-01

    Mirror neurons are increasingly recognized as a crucial substrate for many developmental processes, including imitation and social learning. Although there has been considerable progress in describing their function and localization in the primate and adult human brain, we still know little about their ontogeny. The idea that mirror neurons result from Hebbian learning while the child observes/hears his/her own actions has received remarkable empirical support in recent years. Here we add a new element to this proposal, by suggesting that the infant's perceptual-motor system is optimized to provide the brain with the correct input for Hebbian learning, thus facilitating the association between the perception of actions and their corresponding motor programs. We review evidence that infants (1) have a marked visual preference for hands, (2) show cyclic movement patterns with a frequency that could be in the optimal range for enhanced Hebbian learning, and (3) show synchronized theta EEG (also known to favour synaptic Hebbian learning) in mirror cortical areas during self-observation of grasping. These conditions, taken together, would allow mirror neurons for manual actions to develop quickly and reliably through experiential canalization. Our hypothesis provides a plausible pathway for the emergence of mirror neurons that integrates learning with genetic pre-programming, suggesting new avenues for research on the link between synaptic processes and behaviour in ontogeny.

  3. Alternative jet aircraft fuels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grobman, J.

    1979-01-01

    Potential changes in jet aircraft fuel specifications due to shifts in supply and quality of refinery feedstocks are discussed with emphasis on the effects these changes would have on the performance and durability of aircraft engines and fuel systems. Combustion characteristics, fuel thermal stability, and fuel pumpability at low temperature are among the factors considered. Combustor and fuel system technology needs for broad specification fuels are reviewed including prevention of fuel system fouling and fuel system technology for fuels with higher freezing points.

  4. Polyphenolic Antioxidants and Neuronal Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Ataie, Amin; Shadifar, Mohammad; Ataee, Ramin

    2016-01-01

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

  5. Polyphenolic Antioxidants and Neuronal Regeneration.

    PubMed

    Ataie, Amin; Shadifar, Mohammad; Ataee, Ramin

    2016-04-01

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

  6. Regulation of Neuronal Gene Expression

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiel, Gerald; Lietz, Michael; Leichter, Michael

    Humans as multicellular organisms contain a variety of different cell types where each cell population must fulfill a distinct function in the interest of the whole organism. The molecular basis for the variations in morphology, biochemistry, molecular biology, and function of the various cell types is the cell-type specific expression of genes. These genes encode proteins necessary for executing the specialized functions of each cell type within an organism. We describe here a regulatory mechanism for the expression of neuronal genes. The zinc finger protein REST binds to the regulatory region of many neuronal genes and represses neuronal gene expression in nonneuronal tissues. A negative regulatory mechanism, involving a transcriptional repressor, seems to play an important role in establishing the neuronal phenotype.

  7. Neuronal boost to evolutionary dynamics

    PubMed Central

    de Vladar, Harold P.; Szathmáry, Eörs

    2015-01-01

    Standard evolutionary dynamics is limited by the constraints of the genetic system. A central message of evolutionary neurodynamics is that evolutionary dynamics in the brain can happen in a neuronal niche in real time, despite the fact that neurons do not reproduce. We show that Hebbian learning and structural synaptic plasticity broaden the capacity for informational replication and guided variability provided a neuronally plausible mechanism of replication is in place. The synergy between learning and selection is more efficient than the equivalent search by mutation selection. We also consider asymmetric landscapes and show that the learning weights become correlated with the fitness gradient. That is, the neuronal complexes learn the local properties of the fitness landscape, resulting in the generation of variability directed towards the direction of fitness increase, as if mutations in a genetic pool were drawn such that they would increase reproductive success. Evolution might thus be more efficient within evolved brains than among organisms out in the wild. PMID:26640653

  8. Neuronal boost to evolutionary dynamics.

    PubMed

    de Vladar, Harold P; Szathmáry, Eörs

    2015-12-01

    Standard evolutionary dynamics is limited by the constraints of the genetic system. A central message of evolutionary neurodynamics is that evolutionary dynamics in the brain can happen in a neuronal niche in real time, despite the fact that neurons do not reproduce. We show that Hebbian learning and structural synaptic plasticity broaden the capacity for informational replication and guided variability provided a neuronally plausible mechanism of replication is in place. The synergy between learning and selection is more efficient than the equivalent search by mutation selection. We also consider asymmetric landscapes and show that the learning weights become correlated with the fitness gradient. That is, the neuronal complexes learn the local properties of the fitness landscape, resulting in the generation of variability directed towards the direction of fitness increase, as if mutations in a genetic pool were drawn such that they would increase reproductive success. Evolution might thus be more efficient within evolved brains than among organisms out in the wild.

  9. Modeling neuronal vulnerability in ALS.

    PubMed

    Roselli, Francesco; Caroni, Pico

    2014-08-20

    Using computational models of motor neuron ion fluxes, firing properties, and energy requirements, Le Masson et al. (2014) reveal how local imbalances in energy homeostasis may self-amplify and contribute to neurodegeneration in ALS.

  10. Carbon nanotubes on a substrate

    DOEpatents

    Gao, Yufei [Kennewick, WA; Liu, Jun [West Richland, WA

    2002-03-26

    The present invention includes carbon nanotubes whose hollow cores are 100% filled with conductive filler. The carbon nanotubes are in uniform arrays on a conductive substrate and are well-aligned and can be densely packed. The uniformity of the carbon nanotube arrays is indicated by the uniform length and diameter of the carbon nanotubes, both which vary from nanotube to nanotube on a given array by no more than about 5%. The alignment of the carbon nanotubes is indicated by the perpendicular growth of the nanotubes from the substrates which is achieved in part by the simultaneous growth of the conductive filler within the hollow core of the nanotube and the densely packed growth of the nanotubes. The present invention provides a densely packed carbon nanotube growth where each nanotube is in contact with at least one nearest-neighbor nanotube. The substrate is a conductive substrate coated with a growth catalyst, and the conductive filler can be single crystals of carbide formed by a solid state reaction between the substrate material and the growth catalyst. The present invention further provides a method for making the filled carbon nanotubes on the conductive substrates. The method includes the steps of depositing a growth catalyst onto the conductive substrate as a prepared substrate, creating a vacuum within a vessel which contains the prepared substrate, flowing H2/inert (e.g. Ar) gas within the vessel to increase and maintain the pressure within the vessel, increasing the temperature of the prepared substrate, and changing the H2/Ar gas to ethylene gas such that the ethylene gas flows within the vessel. Additionally, varying the density and separation of the catalyst particles on the conductive substrate can be used to control the diameter of the nanotubes.

  11. FUEL ELEMENT

    DOEpatents

    Fortescue, P.; Zumwalt, L.R.

    1961-11-28

    A fuel element was developed for a gas cooled nuclear reactor. The element is constructed in the form of a compacted fuel slug including carbides of fissionable material in some cases with a breeder material carbide and a moderator which slug is disposed in a canning jacket of relatively impermeable moderator material. Such canned fuel slugs are disposed in an elongated shell of moderator having greater gas permeability than the canning material wherefore application of reduced pressure to the space therebetween causes gas diffusing through the exterior shell to sweep fission products from the system. Integral fission product traps and/or exterior traps as well as a fission product monitoring system may be employed therewith. (AEC)

  12. Fuel compositions

    SciTech Connect

    Zaweski, E.F.; Niebylski, L.M.

    1986-09-23

    This patent describes a distillate fuel for indirect injection compression ignition engines containing at least the combination of (i) organic nitrate ignition accelerator, and (ii) an additive selected from the group consisting of alkenyl substituted succinimide, alkenyl substituted succinamide and mixtures thereof. The alkenyl substituent contains about 12-36 carbon atoms, the additive being made by the process comprising (a) isomerizing the double bond of an ..cap alpha..-olefin containing about 12-36 carbon atoms to obtain a mixture of internal olefins, (b) reacting the mixture of internal olefins with maleic acid, anhydride or ester to obtain an intermediate alkenyl substituted succinic acid, anhydride or ester, and (c) reacting the intermediate with ammonia to form a succinimide, succinamide or mixture thereof. The combination is present in an amount sufficient to minimize the coking characteristics of such fuel, especially throttling nozzle coking in the prechambers or swirl chambers of indirect injection compression ignition engines operated on such fuel.

  13. Reforming of fuel inside fuel cell generator

    DOEpatents

    Grimble, Ralph E.

    1988-01-01

    Disclosed is an improved method of reforming a gaseous reformable fuel within a solid oxide fuel cell generator, wherein the solid oxide fuel cell generator has a plurality of individual fuel cells in a refractory container, the fuel cells generating a partially spent fuel stream and a partially spent oxidant stream. The partially spent fuel stream is divided into two streams, spent fuel stream I and spent fuel stream II. Spent fuel stream I is burned with the partially spent oxidant stream inside the refractory container to produce an exhaust stream. The exhaust stream is divided into two streams, exhaust stream I and exhaust stream II, and exhaust stream I is vented. Exhaust stream II is mixed with spent fuel stream II to form a recycle stream. The recycle stream is mixed with the gaseous reformable fuel within the refractory container to form a fuel stream which is supplied to the fuel cells. Also disclosed is an improved apparatus which permits the reforming of a reformable gaseous fuel within such a solid oxide fuel cell generator. The apparatus comprises a mixing chamber within the refractory container, means for diverting a portion of the partially spent fuel stream to the mixing chamber, means for diverting a portion of exhaust gas to the mixing chamber where it is mixed with the portion of the partially spent fuel stream to form a recycle stream, means for injecting the reformable gaseous fuel into the recycle stream, and means for circulating the recycle stream back to the fuel cells.

  14. Reforming of fuel inside fuel cell generator

    DOEpatents

    Grimble, R.E.

    1988-03-08

    Disclosed is an improved method of reforming a gaseous reformable fuel within a solid oxide fuel cell generator, wherein the solid oxide fuel cell generator has a plurality of individual fuel cells in a refractory container, the fuel cells generating a partially spent fuel stream and a partially spent oxidant stream. The partially spent fuel stream is divided into two streams, spent fuel stream 1 and spent fuel stream 2. Spent fuel stream 1 is burned with the partially spent oxidant stream inside the refractory container to produce an exhaust stream. The exhaust stream is divided into two streams, exhaust stream 1 and exhaust stream 2, and exhaust stream 1 is vented. Exhaust stream 2 is mixed with spent fuel stream 2 to form a recycle stream. The recycle stream is mixed with the gaseous reformable fuel within the refractory container to form a fuel stream which is supplied to the fuel cells. Also disclosed is an improved apparatus which permits the reforming of a reformable gaseous fuel within such a solid oxide fuel cell generator. The apparatus comprises a mixing chamber within the refractory container, means for diverting a portion of the partially spent fuel stream to the mixing chamber, means for diverting a portion of exhaust gas to the mixing chamber where it is mixed with the portion of the partially spent fuel stream to form a recycle stream, means for injecting the reformable gaseous fuel into the recycle stream, and means for circulating the recycle stream back to the fuel cells. 1 fig.

  15. Map-based neuron networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ibarz, Borja; Cao, Hongjun; Sanjuán, Miguel A. F.

    2007-02-01

    Ever since the pioneering work of Hodgkin and Huxley, biological neuron models have consisted of ODEs representing the evolution of the transmembrane voltage and the dynamics of ionic conductances. It is only recently that maps — or difference equations — have begun to receive attention as valid conductance neuron models. They can not only be computationally advantageous substitutes of ODE models, but, since they accommodate chaotic dynamics in a natural way, they may reproduce rich collective behaviors that we explore here.

  16. FUEL ELEMENT

    DOEpatents

    Howard, R.C.; Bokros, J.C.

    1962-03-01

    A fueled matrlx eontnwinlng uncomblned carbon is deslgned for use in graphlte-moderated gas-cooled reactors designed for operatlon at temperatures (about 1500 deg F) at which conventional metallic cladding would ordlnarily undergo undesired carburization or physical degeneratlon. - The invention comprlses, broadly a fuel body containlng uncombined earbon, clad with a nickel alloy contalning over about 28 percent by' weight copper in the preferred embodlment. Thls element ls supporirted in the passageways in close tolerance with the walls of unclad graphite moderator materlal. (AEC)

  17. Glial control of neuronal development.

    PubMed

    Lemke, G

    2001-01-01

    Reciprocal interactions between differentiating glial cells and neurons define the course of nervous system development even before the point at which these two cell types become definitively recognizable. Glial cells control the survival of associated neurons in both Drosophila and mammals, but this control is dependent on the prior neuronal triggering of glial cell fate commitment and trophic factor expression. In mammals, the growth factor neuregulin-1 and its receptors of the ErbB family play crucial roles in both events. Similarly, early differentiating neurons and their associated glia rely on reciprocal signaling to establish the basic axon scaffolds from which neuronal connections evolve. The importance of this interactive signaling is illustrated by the action of glial transcription factors and of glial axon guidance cues such as netrin and slit, which together regulate the commissural crossing of pioneer axons at the neural midline. In these and related events, the defining principle is one of mutually reinforced and mutually dependent signaling that occurs in a network of developing neurons and glia.

  18. Neuritin 1 promotes neuronal migration.

    PubMed

    Zito, Arianna; Cartelli, Daniele; Cappelletti, Graziella; Cariboni, Anna; Andrews, William; Parnavelas, John; Poletti, Angelo; Galbiati, Mariarita

    2014-01-01

    Neuritin 1 (Nrn1 or cpg15-1) is an activity-dependent protein involved in synaptic plasticity during brain development, a process that relies upon neuronal migration. By analyzing Nrn1 expression, we found that it is highly expressed in a mouse model of migrating immortalized neurons (GN11 cells), but not in a mouse model of non-migrating neurons (GT1-7 cells). We thus hypothesized that Nrn1 might control neuronal migration. By using complementary assays, as Boyden's microchemotaxis, scratch-wounding and live cell imaging, we found that GN11 cell migration is enhanced when Nrn1 is overexpressed and decreased when Nrn1 is silenced. The effects of Nrn1 in promoting neuronal migration have been then confirmed ex vivo, on rat cortical interneurons, by Boyden chamber assays and focal electroporation of acute embryonic brain slices. Furthermore, we found that Nrn1 level modulation affects GN11 cell morphology. The process is also paralleled by Nrn1-induced α-tubulin post-translational modifications, a well-recognized marker of microtubule stability. Altogether, the data demonstrate a novel function of Nrn1 in promoting migration of neuronal cells and indicate that Nrn1 levels impact on microtubule stability. PMID:23212301

  19. Network synchronization in hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Penn, Yaron; Segal, Menahem; Moses, Elisha

    2016-03-22

    Oscillatory activity is widespread in dynamic neuronal networks. The main paradigm for the origin of periodicity consists of specialized pacemaking elements that synchronize and drive the rest of the network; however, other models exist. Here, we studied the spontaneous emergence of synchronized periodic bursting in a network of cultured dissociated neurons from rat hippocampus and cortex. Surprisingly, about 60% of all active neurons were self-sustained oscillators when disconnected, each with its own natural frequency. The individual neuron's tendency to oscillate and the corresponding oscillation frequency are controlled by its excitability. The single neuron intrinsic oscillations were blocked by riluzole, and are thus dependent on persistent sodium leak currents. Upon a gradual retrieval of connectivity, the synchrony evolves: Loose synchrony appears already at weak connectivity, with the oscillators converging to one common oscillation frequency, yet shifted in phase across the population. Further strengthening of the connectivity causes a reduction in the mean phase shifts until zero-lag is achieved, manifested by synchronous periodic network bursts. Interestingly, the frequency of network bursting matches the average of the intrinsic frequencies. Overall, the network behaves like other universal systems, where order emerges spontaneously by entrainment of independent rhythmic units. Although simplified with respect to circuitry in the brain, our results attribute a basic functional role for intrinsic single neuron excitability mechanisms in driving the network's activity and dynamics, contributing to our understanding of developing neural circuits.

  20. Network synchronization in hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Penn, Yaron; Segal, Menahem; Moses, Elisha

    2016-03-22

    Oscillatory activity is widespread in dynamic neuronal networks. The main paradigm for the origin of periodicity consists of specialized pacemaking elements that synchronize and drive the rest of the network; however, other models exist. Here, we studied the spontaneous emergence of synchronized periodic bursting in a network of cultured dissociated neurons from rat hippocampus and cortex. Surprisingly, about 60% of all active neurons were self-sustained oscillators when disconnected, each with its own natural frequency. The individual neuron's tendency to oscillate and the corresponding oscillation frequency are controlled by its excitability. The single neuron intrinsic oscillations were blocked by riluzole, and are thus dependent on persistent sodium leak currents. Upon a gradual retrieval of connectivity, the synchrony evolves: Loose synchrony appears already at weak connectivity, with the oscillators converging to one common oscillation frequency, yet shifted in phase across the population. Further strengthening of the connectivity causes a reduction in the mean phase shifts until zero-lag is achieved, manifested by synchronous periodic network bursts. Interestingly, the frequency of network bursting matches the average of the intrinsic frequencies. Overall, the network behaves like other universal systems, where order emerges spontaneously by entrainment of independent rhythmic units. Although simplified with respect to circuitry in the brain, our results attribute a basic functional role for intrinsic single neuron excitability mechanisms in driving the network's activity and dynamics, contributing to our understanding of developing neural circuits. PMID:26961000

  1. Neuronal polarity: an evolutionary perspective

    PubMed Central

    Rolls, Melissa M.; Jegla, Timothy J.

    2015-01-01

    Polarized distribution of signaling molecules to axons and dendrites facilitates directional information flow in complex vertebrate nervous systems. The topic we address here is when the key aspects of neuronal polarity evolved. All neurons have a central cell body with thin processes that extend from it to cover long distances, and they also all rely on voltage-gated ion channels to propagate signals along their length. The most familiar neurons, those in vertebrates, have additional cellular features that allow them to send directional signals efficiently. In these neurons, dendrites typically receive signals and axons send signals. It has been suggested that many of the distinct features of axons and dendrites, including the axon initial segment, are found only in vertebrates. However, it is now becoming clear that two key cytoskeletal features that underlie polarized sorting, a specialized region at the base of the axon and polarized microtubules, are found in invertebrate neurons as well. It thus seems likely that all bilaterians generate axons and dendrites in the same way. As a next step, it will be extremely interesting to determine whether the nerve nets of cnidarians and ctenophores also contain polarized neurons with true axons and dendrites, or whether polarity evolved in concert with the more centralized nervous systems found in bilaterians. PMID:25696820

  2. Donor substrate regulation of transketolase.

    PubMed

    Esakova, Olga A; Meshalkina, Ludmilla E; Golbik, Ralph; Hübner, Gerhard; Kochetov, German A

    2004-11-01

    The influence of substrates on the interaction of apotransketolase with thiamin diphosphate was investigated in the presence of magnesium ions. It was shown that the donor substrates, but not the acceptor substrates, enhance the affinity of the coenzyme either to only one active center of transketolase or to both active centers, but to different degrees in each, resulting in a negative cooperativity for coenzyme binding. In the absence of donor substrate, negative cooperativity is not observed. The donor substrate did not affect the interaction of the apoenzyme with the inactive coenzyme analogue, N3'-pyridyl-thiamin diphosphate. The influence of the donor substrate on the coenzyme-apotransketolase interaction was predicted as a result of formation of the transketolase reaction intermediate 2-(alpha,beta-dihydroxyethyl)-thiamin diphosphate, which exhibited a higher affinity to the enzyme than thiamin diphosphate. The enhancement of thiamin diphosphate's affinity to apotransketolase in the presence of donor substrate is probably one of the mechanisms underlying the substrate-affected transketolase regulation at low coenzyme concentrations.

  3. Photoresist substrate having robust adhesion

    DOEpatents

    Dentinger, Paul M.

    2005-07-26

    A substrate material for LIGA applications w hose general composition is Ti/Cu/Ti/SiO.sub.2. The SiO.sub.2 is preferably applied to the Ti/Cu/Ti wafer as a sputtered coating, typically about 100 nm thick. This substrate composition provides improved adhesion for epoxy-based photoresist materials, and particularly the photoresist material SU-8.

  4. Interaction of SH-SY5Y cells with nanogratings during neuronal differentiation: comparison with primary neurons.

    PubMed

    Tonazzini, Ilaria; Cecchini, Alessandra; Elgersma, Ype; Cecchini, Marco

    2014-04-01

    Controlling neuronal cell adhesion, migration, and axonal outgrowth via contact interactions with biomaterials is a critical element for tissue engineering applications and for developing artificial neuronal interfaces. One promising approach relies on the exploitation of nanostructured surfaces. Here, the human neuroblastoma cell line SH-SY5Y is interfaced with plastic nanogratings (NGs; anisotropic topographies composed by alternating lines of grooves and ridges with sub-micrometer lateral dimension). The SH-SY5Y cells' (SHs) contact guidance is investigated under proliferating conditions and upon differentiation after treatment with retinoic acid (RA) and brain-derived neurotrophin factor (BDNF), and compared with mouse primary hippocampal neurons (HNs). Quantitative readouts are obtained by measuring changes in tubulin cytoskeleton organization and cell morphology induced by mechanotransduction. Results demonstrate that SHs effectively retrieve substrate topographical signals, in particular during differentiation. Remarkably, RA/BDNF improves SH responsiveness to NG directional cues, and significantly enhances the alignment to the NG lines. HNs behave similarly, showing a marked change in network organization if cultured on NGs. These results might help the rational engineering of neuro-regenerative scaffolds to improve peripheral nerve wound healing, as well as to investigate the basic mechanisms of neuronal wiring.

  5. Neuronal polarization in the developing cerebral cortex.

    PubMed

    Sakakibara, Akira; Hatanaka, Yumiko

    2015-01-01

    Cortical neurons consist of excitatory projection neurons and inhibitory GABAergic interneurons, whose connections construct highly organized neuronal circuits that control higher order information processing. Recent progress in live imaging has allowed us to examine how these neurons differentiate during development in vivo or in in vivo-like conditions. These analyses have revealed how the initial steps of polarization, in which neurons establish an axon, occur. Interestingly, both excitatory and inhibitory cortical neurons establish neuronal polarity de novo by undergoing a multipolar stage reminiscent of the manner in which polarity formation occurs in hippocampal neurons in dissociated culture. In this review, we focus on polarity formation in cortical neurons and describe their typical morphology and dynamic behavior during the polarization period. We also discuss cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying polarization, with reference to polarity formation in dissociated hippocampal neurons in vitro.

  6. Composite substrate for bipolar electrodes

    DOEpatents

    Tekkanat, Bora; Bolstad, James J.

    1992-12-22

    Substrates for electrode systems, particularly those to be used for bipolar electrodes in zinc-bromine batteries, are disclosed. The substrates preferably include carbon-black as a conductive filler in a polymeric matrix, with reinforcing materials such as glass fibers. Warpage of the zinc-bromine electrodes which was experienced in the prior art and which was believed to be caused by physical expansion of the electrodes due to bromine absorption by the carbon-black, is substantially eliminated when new substrate fabrication techniques are employed. In the pesent invention, substrates are prepared using a lamination process known as glass mat reinforced thermoplastics technology or, in an alternate embodiment, the substrate is made using a slurry process.

  7. Electrospray Ionization on Solid Substrates

    PubMed Central

    So, Pui-Kin; Hu, Bin; Yao, Zhong-Ping

    2014-01-01

    Development of electrospray ionization on solid substrates (solid-substrate ESI) avoids the clogging problem encountered in conventional capillary-based ESI, allows more convenient sampling and permits new applications. So far, solid-substrate ESI with various materials, e.g., metals, paper, wood, fibers and biological tissue, has been developed, and applications ranging from analysis of pure compounds to complex mixtures as well as in vivo study were demonstrated. Particularly, the capability of solid-substrate ESI in direct analysis of complex samples, e.g., biological fluids and foods, has significantly facilitated mass spectrometric analysis in real-life applications and led to increasingly important roles of these techniques nowadays. In this review, various solid-substrate ESI techniques and their applications are summarized and the prospects in this field are discussed. PMID:26819900

  8. Composite substrate for bipolar electrodes

    DOEpatents

    Tekkanat, B.; Bolstad, J.J.

    1992-12-22

    Substrates for electrode systems, particularly those to be used for bipolar electrodes in zinc-bromine batteries, are disclosed. The substrates preferably include carbon-black as a conductive filler in a polymeric matrix, with reinforcing materials such as glass fibers. Warpage of the zinc-bromine electrodes which was experienced in the prior art and which was believed to be caused by physical expansion of the electrodes due to bromine absorption by the carbon-black, is substantially eliminated when new substrate fabrication techniques are employed. In the present invention, substrates are prepared using a lamination process known as glass mat reinforced thermoplastics technology or, in an alternate embodiment, the substrate is made using a slurry process. 4 figs.

  9. Densified edge seals for fuel cell components

    DOEpatents

    DeCasperis, Anthony J.; Roethlein, Richard J.; Breault, Richard D.

    1982-01-01

    A porous fuel cell component, such as an electrode substrate, has a densified edge which forms an improved gas seal during operation when soaked with electrolyte. The edges are made from the same composition as the rest of the component and are made by compressing an increased thickness of this material along the edges during the fabrication process.

  10. Membrane electrode assembly for a fuel cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prakash, Surya (Inventor); Narayanan, Sekharipuram R. (Inventor); Atti, Anthony (Inventor); Olah, George (Inventor); Smart, Marshall C. (Inventor)

    2006-01-01

    A catalyst ink for a fuel cell including a catalytic material and poly(vinylidene fluoride). The ink may be applied to a substrate to form an electrode, or bonded with other electrode layers to form a membrane electrode assembly (MEA).

  11. Rapid Encoding of New Memories by Individual Neurons in the Human Brain

    PubMed Central

    Ison, Matias J.; Quian Quiroga, Rodrigo; Fried, Itzhak

    2015-01-01

    Summary The creation of memories about real-life episodes requires rapid neuronal changes that may appear after a single occurrence of an event. How is such demand met by neurons in the medial temporal lobe (MTL), which plays a fundamental role in episodic memory formation? We recorded the activity of MTL neurons in neurosurgical patients while they learned new associations. Pairs of unrelated pictures, one of a person and another of a place, were used to construct a meaningful association modeling the episodic memory of meeting a person in a particular place. We found that a large proportion of responsive MTL neurons expanded their selectivity to encode these specific associations within a few trials: cells initially responsive to one picture started firing to the associated one but not to others. Our results provide a plausible neural substrate for the inception of associations, which are crucial for the formation of episodic memories. PMID:26139375

  12. Murine Mueller cells are progenitor cells for neuronal cells and fibrous tissue cells

    SciTech Connect

    Florian, Christian; Langmann, Thomas; Weber, Bernhard H.F.; Morsczeck, Christian

    2008-09-19

    Mammalian Mueller cells have been reported to possess retinal progenitor cell properties and generate new neurons after injury. This study investigates murine Mueller cells under in vitro conditions for their capability of dedifferentiation into retinal progenitor cells. Mueller cells were isolated from mouse retina, and proliferating cells were expanded in serum-containing medium. For dedifferentiation, the cultured cells were transferred to serum-replacement medium (SRM) at different points in time after their isolation. Interestingly, early cell passages produced fibrous tissue in which extracellular matrix proteins and connective tissue markers were differentially expressed. In contrast, aged Mueller cell cultures formed neurospheres in SRM that are characteristic for neuronal progenitor cells. These neurospheres differentiated into neuron-like cells after cultivation on laminin/ornithine cell culture substrate. Here, we report for the first time that murine Mueller cells can be progenitors for both, fibrous tissue cells and neuronal cells, depending on the age of the cell culture.

  13. A glutamatergic reward input from the dorsal raphe to ventral tegmental area dopamine neurons

    PubMed Central

    Qi, Jia; Zhang, Shiliang; Wang, Hui-Ling; Wang, Huikun; de Jesus Aceves Buendia, Jose; Hoffman, Alexander F.; Lupica, Carl R.; Seal, Rebecca P.; Morales, Marisela

    2014-01-01

    Electrical stimulation of the dorsal raphe (DR) and ventral tegmental area (VTA) activates the fibers of the same reward pathway but the phenotype of this pathway and the direction of the reward-relevant fibers have not been determined. Here we report rewarding effects following activation of a DR-originating pathway consisting of vesicular glutamate transporter 3 (VGluT3) containing neurons that form asymmetric synapses onto VTA dopamine neurons that project to nucleus accumbens. Optogenetic VTA activation of this projection elicits AMPA-mediated synaptic excitatory currents in VTA mesoaccumbens dopaminergic neurons and causes dopamine release innucleus accumbens. Activation also reinforces instrumental behavior and establishes conditioned place preferences. These findings indicate that the DR-VGluT3 pathway to VTA utilizes glutamate as a neurotransmitter and is a substrate linking the DR—one of the most sensitive reward sites in the brain—to VTA dopaminergic neurons. PMID:25388237

  14. On whether mirror neurons play a significant role in processing affective prosody.

    PubMed

    Ramachandra, Vijayachandra

    2009-02-01

    Several behavioral and neuroimaging studies have indicated that both right and left cortical structures and a few subcortical ones are involved in processing affective prosody. Recent investigations have shown that the mirror neuron system plays a crucial role in several higher-level functions such as empathy, theory of mind, language, etc., but no studies so far link the mirror neuron system with affective prosody. In this paper is a speculation that the mirror neuron system, which serves as a common neural substrate for different higher-level functions, may play a significant role in processing affective prosody via its connections with the limbic lobe. Actual research must apply electrophysiological and neuroimaging techniques to assess whether the mirror neuron systems underly affective prosody in humans.

  15. The neuronal architecture of the mushroom body provides a logic for associative learning.

    PubMed

    Aso, Yoshinori; Hattori, Daisuke; Yu, Yang; Johnston, Rebecca M; Iyer, Nirmala A; Ngo, Teri-T B; Dionne, Heather; Abbott, L F; Axel, Richard; Tanimoto, Hiromu; Rubin, Gerald M

    2014-01-01

    We identified the neurons comprising the Drosophila mushroom body (MB), an associative center in invertebrate brains, and provide a comprehensive map describing their potential connections. Each of the 21 MB output neuron (MBON) types elaborates segregated dendritic arbors along the parallel axons of ∼2000 Kenyon cells, forming 15 compartments that collectively tile the MB lobes. MBON axons project to five discrete neuropils outside of the MB and three MBON types form a feedforward network in the lobes. Each of the 20 dopaminergic neuron (DAN) types projects axons to one, or at most two, of the MBON compartments. Convergence of DAN axons on compartmentalized Kenyon cell-MBON synapses creates a highly ordered unit that can support learning to impose valence on sensory representations. The elucidation of the complement of neurons of the MB provides a comprehensive anatomical substrate from which one can infer a functional logic of associative olfactory learning and memory. PMID:25535793

  16. A glutamatergic reward input from the dorsal raphe to ventral tegmental area dopamine neurons.

    PubMed

    Qi, Jia; Zhang, Shiliang; Wang, Hui-Ling; Wang, Huikun; de Jesus Aceves Buendia, Jose; Hoffman, Alexander F; Lupica, Carl R; Seal, Rebecca P; Morales, Marisela

    2014-11-12

    Electrical stimulation of the dorsal raphe (DR) and ventral tegmental area (VTA) activates the fibres of the same reward pathway but the phenotype of this pathway and the direction of the reward-relevant fibres have not been determined. Here we report rewarding effects following activation of a DR-originating pathway consisting of vesicular glutamate transporter 3 (VGluT3) containing neurons that form asymmetric synapses onto VTA dopamine neurons that project to nucleus accumbens. Optogenetic VTA activation of this projection elicits AMPA-mediated synaptic excitatory currents in VTA mesoaccumbens dopaminergic neurons and causes dopamine release in nucleus accumbens. Activation also reinforces instrumental behaviour and establishes conditioned place preferences. These findings indicate that the DR-VGluT3 pathway to VTA utilizes glutamate as a neurotransmitter and is a substrate linking the DR-one of the most sensitive reward sites in the brain--to VTA dopaminergic neurons.

  17. The neuronal architecture of the mushroom body provides a logic for associative learning.

    PubMed

    Aso, Yoshinori; Hattori, Daisuke; Yu, Yang; Johnston, Rebecca M; Iyer, Nirmala A; Ngo, Teri-T B; Dionne, Heather; Abbott, L F; Axel, Richard; Tanimoto, Hiromu; Rubin, Gerald M

    2014-12-23

    We identified the neurons comprising the Drosophila mushroom body (MB), an associative center in invertebrate brains, and provide a comprehensive map describing their potential connections. Each of the 21 MB output neuron (MBON) types elaborates segregated dendritic arbors along the parallel axons of ∼2000 Kenyon cells, forming 15 compartments that collectively tile the MB lobes. MBON axons project to five discrete neuropils outside of the MB and three MBON types form a feedforward network in the lobes. Each of the 20 dopaminergic neuron (DAN) types projects axons to one, or at most two, of the MBON compartments. Convergence of DAN axons on compartmentalized Kenyon cell-MBON synapses creates a highly ordered unit that can support learning to impose valence on sensory representations. The elucidation of the complement of neurons of the MB provides a comprehensive anatomical substrate from which one can infer a functional logic of associative olfactory learning and memory.

  18. Fuels characterization studies. [jet fuels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seng, G. T.; Antoine, A. C.; Flores, F. J.

    1980-01-01

    Current analytical techniques used in the characterization of broadened properties fuels are briefly described. Included are liquid chromatography, gas chromatography, and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. High performance liquid chromatographic ground-type methods development is being approached from several directions, including aromatic fraction standards development and the elimination of standards through removal or partial removal of the alkene and aromatic fractions or through the use of whole fuel refractive index values. More sensitive methods for alkene determinations using an ultraviolet-visible detector are also being pursued. Some of the more successful gas chromatographic physical property determinations for petroleum derived fuels are the distillation curve (simulated distillation), heat of combustion, hydrogen content, API gravity, viscosity, flash point, and (to a lesser extent) freezing point.

  19. Fuel cell development for transportation: Catalyst development

    SciTech Connect

    Doddapaneni, N.; Ingersoll, D.

    1996-12-31

    Fuel cells are being considered as alternative power sources for transportation and stationary applications. The degradation of commonly used electrode catalysts (e.g. Pt, Ag, and others) and corrosion of carbon substrates are making commercialization of fuel cells incorporating present day technologies economically problematic. Furthermore, due to the instability of the Pt catalyst, the performance of fuel cells declines on long-term operation. When methanol is used as the fuel, a voltage drop, as well as significant thermal management problems can be encountered, the later being due to chemical oxidation of methanol at the platinized carbon at the cathode. Though extensive work was conducted on platinized electrodes for both the oxidation and reduction reactions, due to the problems mentioned above, fuel cells have not been fully developed for widespread commercial use. Several investigators have previously evaluated metal macrocyclic complexes as alternative catalysts to Pt and Pt/Ru in fuel cells. Unfortunately, though they have demonstrated catalytic activity, these materials were found to be unstable on long term use in the fuel cell environment. In order to improve the long-term stability of metal macrocyclic complexes, we have chemically bonded these complexes to the carbon substrate, thereby enhancing their catalytic activity as well as their chemical stability in the fuel cell environment. We have designed, synthesized, and evaluated these catalysts for O{sub 2} reduction, H{sub 2} oxidation, and direct methanol oxidation in Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) and aqueous carbonate fuel cells. These catalysts exhibited good catalytic activity and long-term stability. In this paper we confine our discussion to the initial performance results of some of these catalysts in H{sub 2}/O{sub 2} PEM fuel cells, including their long-term performance characteristics as well as CO poisoning effects on these catalysts.

  20. Future Fuel.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stover, Del

    1991-01-01

    Tough new environmental laws, coupled with fluctuating oil prices, are likely to prompt hundreds of school systems to examine alternative fuels. Literature reviews and interviews with 45 government, education, and industry officials provided data for a comparative analysis of gasoline, diesel, natural gas, methanol, and propane. (MLF)

  1. Fuel Cells

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hawkins, M. D.

    1973-01-01

    Discusses the theories, construction, operation, types, and advantages of fuel cells developed by the American space programs. Indicates that the cell is an ideal small-scale power source characterized by its compactness, high efficiency, reliability, and freedom from polluting fumes. (CC)

  2. Nuclear Fuels.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nash, J. Thomas

    1983-01-01

    Trends in and factors related to the nuclear industry and nuclear fuel production are discussed. Topics addressed include nuclear reactors, survival of the U.S. uranium industry, production costs, budget cuts by the Department of Energy and U.S. Geological survey for resource studies, mining, and research/development activities. (JN)

  3. Nanocrystalline diamond surfaces for adhesion and growth of primary neurons, conflicting results and rational explanation

    PubMed Central

    Ojovan, Silviya M.; McDonald, Mathew; Rabieh, Noha; Shmuel, Nava; Erez, Hadas; Nesladek, Milos; Spira, Micha E.

    2014-01-01

    Using a variety of proliferating cell types, it was shown that the surface of nanocrystalline diamond (NCD) provides a permissive substrate for cell adhesion and development without the need of complex chemical functionalization prior to cell seeding. In an extensive series of experiments we found that, unlike proliferating cells, post-mitotic primary neurons do not adhere to bare NCD surfaces when cultured in defined medium. These observations raise questions on the potential use of bare NCD as an interfacing layer for neuronal devices. Nevertheless, we also found that classical chemical functionalization methods render the “hostile” bare NCD surfaces with adhesive properties that match those of classically functionalized substrates used extensively in biomedical research and applications. Based on the results, we propose a mechanism that accounts for the conflicting results; which on one hand claim that un-functionalized NCD provides a permissive substrate for cell adhesion and growth, while other reports demonstrate the opposite. PMID:24966832

  4. Mechanical tension applied to substrate films specifies location of neuritogenesis and promotes major neurite growth at the expense of minor neurite development.

    PubMed

    Feng, Zhang-Qi; Franz, Eric W; Leach, Michelle K; Winterroth, Frank; White, Christina M; Rastogi, Arjun; Gu, Zhong-Ze; Corey, Joseph M

    2016-04-01

    One obstacle in neural repair is facilitating axon growth long enough to reach denervated targets. Recent studies show that axonal growth is accelerated by applying tension to bundles of neurites, and additional studies show that mechanical tension is critical to all neurite growth. However, no studies yet describe how individual neurons respond to tensile forces applied to cell bodies and neurites simultaneously; neither do any test motor neurons, a phenotype critical to neural repair. Here we examine the growth of dissociated motor neurons on stretchable substrates. E15 spinal motor neurons were cultured on poly-lactide-co-glycolide films stretched at 4.8, 9.6, or 14.3 mm day(-1). Morphological analysis revealed that substrate stretching has profound effects on developing motor neurons. Stretching increases major neurite length; it also forces neuritogenesis to occur nearest poles of the cell closest to the sources of tension. Stretching also reduces the number of neurites per neuron. These data show that substrate stretching affects neuronal morphology by specifying locations on the cell where neuritogenesis occurs and favoring major neurite growth at the expense of minor neurites. These results serve as a building block for development of new techniques to control and improve the growth of neurons for nerve repair purposes.

  5. Fatty acids increase neuronal hypertrophy of Pten knockdown neurons

    PubMed Central

    Fricano, Catherine J.; DeSpenza, Tyrone; Frazel, Paul W.; Li, Meijie; O'Malley, A. James; Westbrook, Gary L.; Luikart, Bryan W.

    2014-01-01

    Phosphatase and tensin homolog (Pten) catalyzes the reverse reaction of PI3K by dephosphorylating PIP3 to PIP2. This negatively regulates downstream Akt/mTOR/S6 signaling resulting in decreased cellular growth and proliferation. Co-injection of a lentivirus knocking Pten down with a control lentivirus allows us to compare the effects of Pten knockdown between individual neurons within the same animal. We find that knockdown of Pten results in neuronal hypertrophy by 21 days post-injection. This neuronal hypertrophy is correlated with increased p-S6 and p-mTOR in individual neurons. We used this system to test whether an environmental factor that has been implicated in cellular hypertrophy could influence the severity of the Pten knockdown-induced hypertrophy. Implantation of mini-osmotic pumps delivering fatty acids results in increased neuronal hypertrophy and p-S6/p-mTOR staining. These hypertrophic effects were reversed in response to rapamycin treatment. However, we did not observe a similar increase in hypertrophy in response to dietary manipulations of fatty acids. Thus, we conclude that by driving growth signaling with fatty acids and knocking down a critical regulator of growth, Pten, we are able to observe an additive morphological phenotype of increased soma size mediated by the mTOR pathway. PMID:24795563

  6. Neuronize: a tool for building realistic neuronal cell morphologies

    PubMed Central

    Brito, Juan P.; Mata, Susana; Bayona, Sofia; Pastor, Luis; DeFelipe, Javier; Benavides-Piccione, Ruth

    2013-01-01

    This study presents a tool, Neuronize, for building realistic three-dimensional models of neuronal cells from the morphological information extracted through computer-aided tracing applications. Neuronize consists of a set of methods designed to build 3D neural meshes that approximate the cell membrane at different resolution levels, allowing a balance to be reached between the complexity and the quality of the final model. The main contribution of the present study is the proposal of a novel approach to build a realistic and accurate 3D shape of the soma from the incomplete information stored in the digitally traced neuron, which usually consists of a 2D cell body contour. This technique is based on the deformation of an initial shape driven by the position and thickness of the first order dendrites. The addition of a set of spines along the dendrites completes the model, building a final 3D neuronal cell suitable for its visualization in a wide range of 3D environments. PMID:23761740

  7. Non-cell autonomous influence of the astrocyte system xc- on hypoglycaemic neuronal cell death.

    PubMed

    Jackman, Nicole A; Melchior, Shannon E; Hewett, James A; Hewett, Sandra J

    2012-02-08

    Despite longstanding evidence that hypoglycaemic neuronal injury is mediated by glutamate excitotoxicity, the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved remain incompletely defined. Here, we demonstrate that the excitotoxic neuronal death that follows GD (glucose deprivation) is initiated by glutamate extruded from astrocytes via system xc---an amino acid transporter that imports L-cystine and exports L-glutamate. Specifically, we find that depriving mixed cortical cell cultures of glucose for up to 8 h injures neurons, but not astrocytes. Neuronal death is prevented by ionotropic glutamate receptor antagonism and is partially sensitive to tetanus toxin. Removal of amino acids during the deprivation period prevents--whereas addition of L-cystine restores--GD-induced neuronal death, implicating the cystine/glutamate antiporter, system xc-. Indeed, drugs known to inhibit system xc- ameliorate GD-induced neuronal death. Further, a dramatic reduction in neuronal death is observed in chimaeric cultures consisting of neurons derived from WT (wild-type) mice plated on top of astrocytes derived from sut mice, which harbour a naturally occurring null mutation in the gene (Slc7a11) that encodes the substrate-specific light chain of system xc- (xCT). Finally, enhancement of astrocytic system xc- expression and function via IL-1β (interleukin-1β) exposure potentiates hypoglycaemic neuronal death, the process of which is prevented by removal of l-cystine and/or addition of system xc- inhibitors. Thus, under the conditions of GD, our studies demonstrate that astrocytes, via system xc-, have a direct, non-cell autonomous effect on cortical neuron survival.

  8. Fatty acid biosynthesis from glutamate and glutamine is specifically induced in neuronal cells under hypoxia

    PubMed Central

    Brose, Stephen A.; Marquardt, Amanda L.; Golovko, Mikhail Y.

    2014-01-01

    Hypoxia is involved in many neuronal and non-neuronal diseases, and defining the mechanisms for tissue adaptation to hypoxia is critical for the understanding and treatment of these diseases. One mechanism for tissue adaptation to hypoxia is increased glutamine and/or glutamate (Gln/Glu) utilization. To address this mechanism, we determined total Gln/Glu incorporation into lipids and fatty acids in both primary neurons and a neuronal cell line under normoxic and hypoxic conditions and compared this to non-neuronal primary cells and non-neuronal cell lines. Incorporation of Gln/Glu into total lipids was dramatically and specifically increased under hypoxia in neuronal cells including both primary (2.0- and 3.0- fold for Gln and Glu, respectively) and immortalized cultures (3.5- and 8.0- fold for Gln and Glu, respectively), and 90% to 97% of this increase was accounted for by incorporation into fatty acids (FA) depending upon substrate and cell type. All other non-neuronal cells tested demonstrated decreased or unchanged FA synthesis from Gln/Glu under hypoxia. Consistent with these data, total FA mass was also increased in neuronal cells under hypoxia that was mainly accounted for by the increase in saturated and monounsaturated FA with carbon length from 14 to 24. Incorporation of FA synthesized from Gln/Glu was increased in all major lipid classes including cholesteryl esters, TAGs, DAGs, free FA, and phospholipids, with the highest rate of incorporation into TAGs. These results indicate that increased FA biosynthesis from Gln/Glu followed by esterification may be a neuronal specific pathway for adaptation to hypoxia. PMID:24266789

  9. High performance, high durability non-precious metal fuel cell catalysts

    DOEpatents

    Wood, Thomas E.; Atanasoski, Radoslav; Schmoeckel, Alison K.

    2016-03-15

    This invention relates to non-precious metal fuel cell cathode catalysts, fuel cells that contain these catalysts, and methods of making the same. The fuel cell cathode catalysts are highly nitrogenated carbon materials that can contain a transition metal. The highly nitrogenated carbon materials can be supported on a nanoparticle substrate.

  10. Method of processing a substrate

    DOEpatents

    Babayan, Steven E.; Hicks, Robert F.

    2008-02-12

    The invention is embodied in a plasma flow device or reactor having a housing that contains conductive electrodes with openings to allow gas to flow through or around them, where one or more of the electrodes are powered by an RF source and one or more are grounded, and a substrate or work piece is placed in the gas flow downstream of the electrodes, such that said substrate or work piece is substantially uniformly contacted across a large surface area with the reactive gases emanating therefrom. The invention is also embodied in a plasma flow device or reactor having a housing that contains conductive electrodes with openings to allow gas to flow through or around them, where one or more of the electrodes are powered by an RF source and one or more are grounded, and one of the grounded electrodes contains a means of mixing in other chemical precursors to combine with the plasma stream, and a substrate or work piece placed in the gas flow downstream of the electrodes, such that said substrate or work piece is contacted by the reactive gases emanating therefrom. In one embodiment, the plasma flow device removes organic materials from a substrate or work piece, and is a stripping or cleaning device. In another embodiment, the plasma flow device kills biological microorganisms on a substrate or work piece, and is a sterilization device. In another embodiment, the plasma flow device activates the surface of a substrate or work piece, and is a surface activation device. In another embodiment, the plasma flow device etches materials from a substrate or work piece, and is a plasma etcher. In another embodiment, the plasma flow device deposits thin films onto a substrate or work piece, and is a plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition device or reactor.

  11. Controlling growth and electrical connectivity of neuronal cells patterned on surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beighley, Ross; Spedden, Elise; White, James; Staii, Cristian

    2012-02-01

    In the developing brain biochemical and geometrical cues are an essential source of information used by neurons when wiring up the nervous system. However, our current understanding of the mechanisms by which various guidance factors control the path that growing axons/dendrites follow to reach their targets and form functional electrical connections remains qualitative. A current limitation for the study of neural network formation is the ability to precisely control the growth and interconnectivity of small numbers of neurons. Here we present a combined Atomic Force Microscopy - Fluorescence Spectroscopy approach for patterning neurons on 2-dimensional substrates and precisely controlling their location, growth and interconnectivity. We demonstrate that this approach allows one to: a) form simple neuronal circuits in well-controlled geometries; b) guide the formation of functional synapses between neurons, and c) measure the electrical activity of small groups of neurons. We also discuss the implications of these results for our current understanding of the fundamental mechanisms that govern the development of electrical connections between neurons.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  13. Effects of Electrical Stimulation in Sympathetic Neuron-Cardiomyocyte Co-cultures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takeuchi, Akimasa; Tani, Hiromasa; Mori, Masahide; Moriguchi, Hiroyuki; Kotani, Kiyoshi; Lee, Jong-Kook; Noshiro, Makoto; Jimbo, Yasuhiko

    The sympathetic nervous system is one of the principal sources for regulating cardiovascular functions. Little is known, however, about the network-level interactions between sympathetic neurons and cardiomyocytes. In this study, a semi-separated co-culture system of superior cervical ganglion (SCG) neurons and ventricular myocytes (VMs) was developed by using a polydimethylsyloxane (PDMS) chamber placed on a microelectrode-array (MEA) substrate. Neurites of SCG neurons passed through a conduit of the chamber and reached VMs. Evoked activities of SCG neurons were observed from several electrodes immediately after applying constant-voltage stimulation (1 V, 1 ms, biphasic square pulses) to SCG neurons by using 32 electrodes. Furthermore, this stimulation was applied to SCG neurons at the frequency of 1, 5 and 10 Hz. After applying these three kinds of stimulations, mean minute contraction rate of VMs increased with an increase in the frequency of stimulation. These results suggest that changes in contraction rate of VMs after applying electrical stimulations to SCG neurons depend on frequencies of these stimulations and that the heart-regulating mechanisms as well as that in the body were formed in this co-culture system.

  14. Depletion of cholinergic neurons of the medullary arcuate nucleus in multiple system atrophy.

    PubMed

    Benarroch, E E; Schmeichel, A M; Parisi, J E

    2001-03-23

    The human arcuate nucleus (ArcN) has been considered akin to the pontine precerebellar nuclei. However, there is anatomical, functional, and clinical evidence that the ArcN may be the homologue of chemosensitive areas of the ventral medullary surface involved in ventilatory responses to hypercarbia and cerebrospinal fluid acidosis. Acetylcholine has been involved in mechanisms of central chemosensitivity. Loss of ArcN neurons has been reported in patients with multiple system atrophy (MSA), a disorder characterized by disturbed automatic ventilation, but the neurochemical identity of these neurons is undetermined. We sought to determine whether the ArcN contains cholinergic neurons and whether these neurons are depleted in patients with MSA. Medullae were obtained from six patients with MSA, five patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) and six sex- and age-matched controls. Fifty-micron transverse sections obtained through the mid-olivary levels were processed for acetylcholinesterase (AchE), choline acetyltransferase (CAT), and alpha-synuclein immunoreactivity. We found that the ArcN contained CAT-positive neurons. There was a significant decrease in density of cholinergic ArcN neurons in MSA but not in PD patients. alpha-Synuclein-containing inclusions were present in the ArcN of MSA patients. Depletion of cholinergic neurons may provide a substrate for disturbances in automatic respiration in MSA patients.

  15. An extracellular proteolytic cascade promotes neuronal degeneration in the mouse hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Tsirka, S E; Rogove, A D; Bugge, T H; Degen, J L; Strickland, S

    1997-01-15

    Mice lacking the serine protease tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) are resistant to excitotoxin-mediated hippocampal neuronal degeneration. We have used genetic and cellular analyses to study the role of tPA in neuronal cell death. Mice deficient for the zymogen plasminogen, a known substrate for tPA, are also resistant to excitotoxins, implicating an extracellular proteolytic cascade in degeneration. The two known components of this cascade, tPA and plasminogen, are both synthesized in the mouse hippocampus. tPA mRNA and protein are present in neurons and microglia, whereas plasminogen mRNA and protein are found exclusively in neurons. tPA-deficient mice exhibit attenuated microglial activation as a reaction to neuronal injury. In contrast, the microglial response of plasminogen-deficient mice was comparable to that of wild-type mice, suggesting a tPA-mediated, plasminogen-independent pathway for activation of microglia. Infusion of inhibitors of the extracellular tPA/plasmin proteolytic cascade into the hippocampus protects neurons against excitotoxic injury, suggesting a novel strategy for intervening in neuronal degeneration.

  16. Endogenous recovery after brain damage: molecular mechanisms that balance neuronal life/death fate.

    PubMed

    Tovar-y-Romo, Luis B; Penagos-Puig, Andrés; Ramírez-Jarquín, Josué O

    2016-01-01

    Neuronal survival depends on multiple factors that comprise a well-fueled energy metabolism, trophic input, clearance of toxic substances, appropriate redox environment, integrity of blood-brain barrier, suppression of programmed cell death pathways and cell cycle arrest. Disturbances of brain homeostasis lead to acute or chronic alterations that might ultimately cause neuronal death with consequent impairment of neurological function. Although we understand most of these processes well when they occur independently from one another, we still lack a clear grasp of the concerted cellular and molecular mechanisms activated upon neuronal damage that intervene in protecting damaged neurons from death. In this review, we summarize a handful of endogenously activated mechanisms that balance molecular cues so as to determine whether neurons recover from injury or die. We center our discussion on mechanisms that have been identified to participate in stroke, although we consider different scenarios of chronic neurodegeneration as well. We discuss two central processes that are involved in endogenous repair and that, when not regulated, could lead to tissue damage, namely, trophic support and neuroinflammation. We emphasize the need to construct integrated models of neuronal degeneration and survival that, in the end, converge in neuronal fate after injury. Under neurodegenerative conditions, endogenously activated mechanisms balance out molecular cues that determine whether neurons contend toxicity or die. Many processes involved in endogenous repair may as well lead to tissue damage depending on the strength of stimuli. Signaling mediated by trophic factors and neuroinflammation are examples of these processes as they regulate different mechanisms that mediate neuronal demise including necrosis, apoptosis, necroptosis, pyroptosis and autophagy. In this review, we discuss recent findings on balanced regulation and their involvement in neuronal death.

  17. CB2 cannabinoid receptors inhibit synaptic transmission when expressed in cultured autaptic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Atwood, Brady K.; Straiker, Alex; Mackie, Ken

    2012-01-01

    The role of CB2 in the central nervous system, particularly in neurons, has generated much controversy. Fueling the controversy are imperfect tools, which have made conclusive identification of CB2-expressing neurons problematic. Imprecise localization of CB2 has made it difficult to determine its function in neurons. Here we avoid the localization controversy and directly address the question if CB2 can modulate neurotransmission. CB2 was expressed in excitatory hippocampal autaptic neurons obtained from CB1 null mice. Whole-cell patch clamp recordings were made from these neurons to determine the effects of CB2 on short-term synaptic plasticity. CB2 expression restored depolarization induced suppression of excitation to these neurons, which was lost following genetic ablation of CB1. The endocannabinoid 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG) mimicked the effects of depolarization in CB2 expressing neurons. Interestingly, ongoing basal production of 2-AG resulted in constitutive activation of CB2, causing a tonic inhibition of neurotransmission that was relieved by the CB2 antagonist AM630 or the diacylglycerol lipase inhibitor RHC80267. Through immunocytochemistry and analysis of spontaneous EPSCs, paired pulse ratios and coefficients of variation we determined that CB2 exerts its function at a presynaptic site of action, likely through inhibition of voltage gated calcium channels. Therefore CB2 expressed in neurons effectively mimics the actions of CB1. Thus, neuronal CB2 is well suited to integrate into conventional neuronal endocannabinoid signaling processes, with its specific role determined by its unique and highly inducible expression profile. PMID:22579668

  18. Boron hydride polymer coated substrates

    DOEpatents

    Pearson, R.K.; Bystroff, R.I.; Miller, D.E.

    1986-08-27

    A method is disclosed for coating a substrate with a uniformly smooth layer of a boron hydride polymer. The method comprises providing a reaction chamber which contains the substrate and the boron hydride plasma. A boron hydride feed stock is introduced into the chamber simultaneously with the generation of a plasma discharge within the chamber. A boron hydride plasma of ions, electrons and free radicals which is generated by the plasma discharge interacts to form a uniformly smooth boron hydride polymer which is deposited on the substrate.

  19. Direct cooled power electronics substrate

    DOEpatents

    Wiles, Randy H [Powell, TN; Wereszczak, Andrew A [Oak Ridge, TN; Ayers, Curtis W [Kingston, TN; Lowe, Kirk T [Knoxville, TN

    2010-09-14

    The disclosure describes directly cooling a three-dimensional, direct metallization (DM) layer in a power electronics device. To enable sufficient cooling, coolant flow channels are formed within the ceramic substrate. The direct metallization layer (typically copper) may be bonded to the ceramic substrate, and semiconductor chips (such as IGBT and diodes) may be soldered or sintered onto the direct metallization layer to form a power electronics module. Multiple modules may be attached to cooling headers that provide in-flow and out-flow of coolant through the channels in the ceramic substrate. The modules and cooling header assembly are preferably sized to fit inside the core of a toroidal shaped capacitor.

  20. Boron hydride polymer coated substrates

    DOEpatents

    Pearson, Richard K.; Bystroff, Roman I.; Miller, Dale E.

    1987-01-01

    A method is disclosed for coating a substrate with a uniformly smooth layer of a boron hydride polymer. The method comprises providing a reaction chamber which contains the substrate and the boron hydride plasma. A boron hydride feed stock is introduced into the chamber simultaneously with the generation of a plasma discharge within the chamber. A boron hydride plasma of ions, electrons and free radicals which is generated by the plasma discharge interacts to form a uniformly smooth boron hydride polymer which is deposited on the substrate.

  1. Supplemental fuel vapor system

    SciTech Connect

    Foster, P.M.

    1991-01-08

    This patent describes a supplemental fuel system utilizing fuel vapor. It comprises: an internal combustion engine including a carburetor and an intake manifold; a fuel tank provided with air vents; a fuel conduit having a first end connected to the fuel tank and in communication with liquid fuel in the tank and a second end connected to the carburetor; the fuel conduit delivering the liquid fuel to the carburetor from the fuel tank; a fuel vapor conduit having a first end connected to the fuel tank at a location displaced from contact with the liquid fuel and a second end connected to a carbon canister; a PCV conduit having a first end connected to a pollution control valve and a second end connected to the intake manifold; and, an intermediate fuel vapor conduit having a first end connected to the fuel vapor conduit and a second end connected to the PCV conduit; wherein the air vents continuously provide air to the tank to mix with the liquid fuel and form fuel vapor. The fuel vapor drawn from the fuel tank by vacuum developed in the intake manifold and flows through the fuel vapor conduit. The intermediate fuel vapor conduit and the intake manifold to combustion chambers of the internal combustion engine so as to supplement fuel delivered to the engine by the fuel conduit. The liquid fuel and the fuel vapor constantly delivered to the engine during normal operation.

  2. Chondroitin sulfate and neuronal disorders.

    PubMed

    Miyata, Shinji; Kitagawa, Hiroshi

    2016-01-01

    The brain extracellular matrix (ECM) is involved in several aspects of neuronal development, plasticity, and pathophysiology. Chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs), consisting of core proteins with covalently attached chondroitin sulfate (CS) chains, are essential components of the brain ECM. During late postnatal development, CSPGs condense around parvalbumin-expressing inhibitory neurons (PV-cells) and form lattice-like ECM structures called perineuronal nets (PNNs). Enzymatic or genetic manipulation of PNNs reactivates neuronal plasticity in the adult brain, probably by resetting the excitatory/inhibitory balance in neural networks. Recent studies have indicated that PNNs control PV-cell function by enhancing the accumulation of specific proteins at the cell surface and/or acting as neuroprotective shields against oxidative stress. Since dysfunction of PV-cells and remodeling of CSPGs are commonly observed in several disorders, including schizophrenia, Costello syndrome, Alzheimer's disease, and epilepsy, modulation of PV-cell function by CSPGs may provide a novel strategy for these neuronal disorders. Here we review the potential roles of CSPGs as therapeutic targets for neuronal disorders, with particular focus on structural changes of CS chains under pathological conditions.

  3. Neuronal factors determining high intelligence.

    PubMed

    Dicke, Ursula; Roth, Gerhard

    2016-01-01

    Many attempts have been made to correlate degrees of both animal and human intelligence with brain properties. With respect to mammals, a much-discussed trait concerns absolute and relative brain size, either uncorrected or corrected for body size. However, the correlation of both with degrees of intelligence yields large inconsistencies, because although they are regarded as the most intelligent mammals, monkeys and apes, including humans, have neither the absolutely nor the relatively largest brains. The best fit between brain traits and degrees of intelligence among mammals is reached by a combination of the number of cortical neurons, neuron packing density, interneuronal distance and axonal conduction velocity--factors that determine general information processing capacity (IPC), as reflected by general intelligence. The highest IPC is found in humans, followed by the great apes, Old World and New World monkeys. The IPC of cetaceans and elephants is much lower because of a thin cortex, low neuron packing density and low axonal conduction velocity. By contrast, corvid and psittacid birds have very small and densely packed pallial neurons and relatively many neurons, which, despite very small brain volumes, might explain their high intelligence. The evolution of a syntactical and grammatical language in humans most probably has served as an additional intelligence amplifier, which may have happened in songbirds and psittacids in a convergent manner. PMID:26598734

  4. Network synchronization in hippocampal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Penn, Yaron; Segal, Menahem; Moses, Elisha

    2016-01-01

    Oscillatory activity is widespread in dynamic neuronal networks. The main paradigm for the origin of periodicity consists of specialized pacemaking elements that synchronize and drive the rest of the network; however, other models exist. Here, we studied the spontaneous emergence of synchronized periodic bursting in a network of cultured dissociated neurons from rat hippocampus and cortex. Surprisingly, about 60% of all active neurons were self-sustained oscillators when disconnected, each with its own natural frequency. The individual neuron’s tendency to oscillate and the corresponding oscillation frequency are controlled by its excitability. The single neuron intrinsic oscillations were blocked by riluzole, and are thus dependent on persistent sodium leak currents. Upon a gradual retrieval of connectivity, the synchrony evolves: Loose synchrony appears already at weak connectivity, with the oscillators converging to one common oscillation frequency, yet shifted in phase across the population. Further strengthening of the connectivity causes a reduction in the mean phase shifts until zero-lag is achieved, manifested by synchronous periodic network bursts. Interestingly, the frequency of network bursting matches the average of the intrinsic frequencies. Overall, the network behaves like other universal systems, where order emerges spontaneously by entrainment of independent rhythmic units. Although simplified with respect to circuitry in the brain, our results attribute a basic functional role for intrinsic single neuron excitability mechanisms in driving the network’s activity and dynamics, contributing to our understanding of developing neural circuits. PMID:26961000

  5. Vibrational resonance in neuron populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Bin; Wang, Jiang; Wei, Xile; Tsang, K. M.; Chan, W. L.

    2010-03-01

    In this paper different topologies of populations of FitzHugh-Nagumo neurons have been introduce to investigate the effect of high-frequency driving on the response of neuron populations to a subthreshold low-frequency signal. We show that optimal amplitude of high-frequency driving enhances the response of neuron populations to a subthreshold low-frequency input and the optimal amplitude dependences on the connection among the neurons. By analyzing several kinds of topology (i.e., random and small world) different behaviors have been observed. Several topologies behave in an optimal way with respect to the range of low-frequency amplitude leading to an improvement in the stimulus response coherence, while others with respect to the maximum values of the performance index. However, the best results in terms of both the suitable amplitude of high-frequency driving and high stimulus response coherence have been obtained when the neurons have been connected in a small-world topology.

  6. Stochastic phase-change neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuma, Tomas; Pantazi, Angeliki; Le Gallo, Manuel; Sebastian, Abu; Eleftheriou, Evangelos

    2016-08-01

    Artificial neuromorphic systems based on populations of spiking neurons are an indispensable tool in understanding the human brain and in constructing neuromimetic computational systems. To reach areal and power efficiencies comparable to those seen in biological systems, electroionics-based and phase-change-based memristive devices have been explored as nanoscale counterparts of synapses. However, progress on scalable realizations of neurons has so far been limited. Here, we show that chalcogenide-based phase-change materials can be used to create an artificial neuron in which the membrane potential is represented by the phase configuration of the nanoscale phase-change device. By exploiting the physics of reversible amorphous-to-crystal phase transitions, we show that the temporal integration of postsynaptic potentials can be achieved on a nanosecond timescale. Moreover, we show that this is inherently stochastic because of the melt-quench-induced reconfiguration of the atomic structure occurring when the neuron is reset. We demonstrate the use of these phase-change neurons, and their populations, in the detection of temporal correlations in parallel data streams and in sub-Nyquist representation of high-bandwidth signals.

  7. Brain Neurons as Quantum Computers:

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bershadskii, A.; Dremencov, E.; Bershadskii, J.; Yadid, G.

    The question: whether quantum coherent states can sustain decoherence, heating and dissipation over time scales comparable to the dynamical timescales of brain neurons, has been actively discussed in the last years. A positive answer on this question is crucial, in particular, for consideration of brain neurons as quantum computers. This discussion was mainly based on theoretical arguments. In the present paper nonlinear statistical properties of the Ventral Tegmental Area (VTA) of genetically depressive limbic brain are studied in vivo on the Flinders Sensitive Line of rats (FSL). VTA plays a key role in the generation of pleasure and in the development of psychological drug addiction. We found that the FSL VTA (dopaminergic) neuron signals exhibit multifractal properties for interspike frequencies on the scales where healthy VTA dopaminergic neurons exhibit bursting activity. For high moments the observed multifractal (generalized dimensions) spectrum coincides with the generalized dimensions spectrum calculated for a spectral measure of a quantum system (so-called kicked Harper model, actively used as a model of quantum chaos). This observation can be considered as a first experimental (in vivo) indication in the favor of the quantum (at least partially) nature of brain neurons activity.

  8. Neuronal factors determining high intelligence.

    PubMed

    Dicke, Ursula; Roth, Gerhard

    2016-01-01

    Many attempts have been made to correlate degrees of both animal and human intelligence with brain properties. With respect to mammals, a much-discussed trait concerns absolute and relative brain size, either uncorrected or corrected for body size. However, the correlation of both with degrees of intelligence yields large inconsistencies, because although they are regarded as the most intelligent mammals, monkeys and apes, including humans, have neither the absolutely nor the relatively largest brains. The best fit between brain traits and degrees of intelligence among mammals is reached by a combination of the number of cortical neurons, neuron packing density, interneuronal distance and axonal conduction velocity--factors that determine general information processing capacity (IPC), as reflected by general intelligence. The highest IPC is found in humans, followed by the great apes, Old World and New World monkeys. The IPC of cetaceans and elephants is much lower because of a thin cortex, low neuron packing density and low axonal conduction velocity. By contrast, corvid and psittacid birds have very small and densely packed pallial neurons and relatively many neurons, which, despite very small brain volumes, might explain their high intelligence. The evolution of a syntactical and grammatical language in humans most probably has served as an additional intelligence amplifier, which may have happened in songbirds and psittacids in a convergent manner.

  9. Neuronal plasticity: adaptation and readaptation to the environment of space.

    PubMed

    Correia, M J

    1998-11-01

    While there have been few documented permanent neurological changes resulting from space travel, there is a growing literature which suggests that neural plasticity sometimes occurs within peripheral and central vestibular pathways during and following spaceflight. This plasticity probably has adaptive value within the context of the space environment, but it can be maladaptive upon return to the terrestrial environment. Fortunately, the maladaptive responses resulting from neuronal plasticity diminish following return to earth. However, the literature suggests that the longer the space travel, the more difficult the readaptation. With the possibility of extended space voyages and extended stays on board the international space station, it seems worthwhile to review examples of plastic vestibular responses and changes in the underlying neural substrates. Studies and facilities needed for space station investigation of plastic changes in the neural substrates are suggested.

  10. Neuronal plasticity: adaptation and readaptation to the environment of space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Correia, M. J.

    1998-01-01

    While there have been few documented permanent neurological changes resulting from space travel, there is a growing literature which suggests that neural plasticity sometimes occurs within peripheral and central vestibular pathways during and following spaceflight. This plasticity probably has adaptive value within the context of the space environment, but it can be maladaptive upon return to the terrestrial environment. Fortunately, the maladaptive responses resulting from neuronal plasticity diminish following return to earth. However, the literature suggests that the longer the space travel, the more difficult the readaptation. With the possibility of extended space voyages and extended stays on board the international space station, it seems worthwhile to review examples of plastic vestibular responses and changes in the underlying neural substrates. Studies and facilities needed for space station investigation of plastic changes in the neural substrates are suggested. Copyright 1998 Elsevier Science B.V.

  11. Composition of agarose substrate affects behavioral output of Drosophila larvae

    PubMed Central

    Apostolopoulou, Anthi A.; Hersperger, Fabian; Mazija, Lorena; Widmann, Annekathrin; Wüst, Alexander; Thum, Andreas S.

    2014-01-01

    In the last decade the Drosophila larva has evolved into a simple model organism offering the opportunity to integrate molecular genetics with systems neuroscience. This led to a detailed understanding of the neuronal networks for a number of sensory functions and behaviors including olfaction, vision, gustation and learning and memory. Typically, behavioral assays in use exploit simple Petri dish setups with either agarose or agar as a substrate. However, neither the quality nor the concentration of the substrate is generally standardized across these experiments and there is no data available on how larval behavior is affected by such different substrates. Here, we have investigated the effects of different agarose concentrations on several larval behaviors. We demonstrate that agarose concentration is an important parameter, which affects all behaviors tested: preference, feeding, learning and locomotion. Larvae can discriminate between different agarose concentrations, they feed differently on them, they can learn to associate an agarose concentration with an odor stimulus and change locomotion on a substrate of higher agarose concentration. Additionally, we have investigated the effect of agarose concentration on three quinine based behaviors: preference, feeding and learning. We show that in all cases examined the behavioral output changes in an agarose concentration-dependent manner. Our results suggest that comparisons between experiments performed on substrates differing in agarose concentration should be done with caution. It should be taken into consideration that the agarose concentration can affect the behavioral output and thereby the experimental outcomes per se potentially due to the initiation of an escape response or changes in foraging behavior on more rigid substrates. PMID:24478658

  12. Neuronal Deletion of Ghrelin Receptor Almost Completely Prevents Diet-Induced Obesity.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jong Han; Lin, Ligen; Xu, Pingwen; Saito, Kenji; Wei, Qiong; Meadows, Adelina G; Bongmba, Odelia Y N; Pradhan, Geetali; Zheng, Hui; Xu, Yong; Sun, Yuxiang

    2016-08-01

    Ghrelin signaling has major effects on energy and glucose homeostasis, but it is unknown whether ghrelin's functions are centrally and/or peripherally mediated. The ghrelin receptor, growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHS-R), is highly expressed in the brain and detectable in some peripheral tissues. To understand the roles of neuronal GHS-R, we generated a mouse line where Ghsr gene is deleted in all neurons using synapsin 1 (Syn1)-Cre driver. Our data showed that neuronal Ghsr deletion abolishes ghrelin-induced spontaneous food intake but has no effect on total energy intake. Remarkably, neuronal Ghsr deletion almost completely prevented diet-induced obesity (DIO) and significantly improved insulin sensitivity. The neuronal Ghsr-deleted mice also showed improved metabolic flexibility, indicative of better adaption to different fuels. In addition, gene expression analysis suggested that hypothalamus and/or midbrain might be the sites that mediate the effects of GHS-R in thermogenesis and physical activity, respectively. Collectively, our results indicate that neuronal GHS-R is a crucial regulator of energy metabolism and a key mediator of DIO. Neuronal Ghsr deletion protects against DIO by regulating energy expenditure, not by energy intake. These novel findings suggest that suppressing central ghrelin signaling may serve as a unique antiobesity strategy. PMID:27207529

  13. 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.

  14. Fuel cell

    SciTech Connect

    Struthers, R.C.

    1983-06-28

    An improved fuel cell comprising an anode section including an anode terminal, an anode fuel, and an anolyte electrolyte, a cathode section including a cathode terminal, an electron distributor and a catholyte electrolyte, an ion exchange section between the anode and cathode sections and including an ionolyte electrolyte, ion transfer membranes separating the ionolyte from the anolyte and the catholyte and an electric circuit connected with and between the terminals conducting free electrons from the anode section and delivering free electrons to the cathode section, said ionolyte receives ions of one polarity moving from the anolyte through the membrane related thereto preventing chemical equilibrium in the anode section and sustaining chemical reaction and the generating of free electrons therein, said ions received by the ionolyte from the anolyte release different ions from the ionolyte which move through the membrane between the ionolyte and catholyte and which add to the catholyte.

  15. Film Growth on Nanoporous Substrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xue; Joy, James; Zhao, Chenwei; Xu, J. M.; Valles, James

    Self-ordered nanoporous anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) provides an easy way to fabricate nano structured material, such as nano wires and nano particles. We employ AAO as substrates and focus on the thermally evaporated film growth on the surface of the substrate. With various materials deposited onto the substrate, we find the films show different structures, e,g. ordered array of nano particles for Lead and nanohoneycomb structure for Silver. We relate the differing behaviors to the difference of surface energy and diffusion constant. To verify this, the effect of substrate temperature on the film growth has been explored and the structure of the film has been successfully changed through the process. We are grateful for the support of NSF Grants No. DMR-1307290.

  16. Fuel conditioner

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, M.L.; Nelson, O.L. Jr.

    1988-06-28

    A fuel conditioner is described comprising 10 to 80% of a polar oxygenated hydrocarbon having an average molecular weight from about 250 to about 500, an acid acid number from about 25 to about 125, and a saponification number from about 30 to about 250; and 5 to 50% of an oxygenated compatibilizing agent having a solubility parameter of from about 8.8 to about 11.5 and moderate to strong hydrogen-bonding capacity.

  17. Chimera states in bursting neurons.

    PubMed

    Bera, Bidesh K; Ghosh, Dibakar; Lakshmanan, M

    2016-01-01

    We study the existence of chimera states in pulse-coupled networks of bursting Hindmarsh-Rose neurons with nonlocal, global, and local (nearest neighbor) couplings. Through a linear stability analysis, we discuss the behavior of the stability function in the incoherent (i.e., disorder), coherent, chimera, and multichimera states. Surprisingly, we find that chimera and multichimera states occur even using local nearest neighbor interaction in a network of identical bursting neurons alone. This is in contrast with the existence of chimera states in populations of nonlocally or globally coupled oscillators. A chemical synaptic coupling function is used which plays a key role in the emergence of chimera states in bursting neurons. The existence of chimera, multichimera, coherent, and disordered states is confirmed by means of the recently introduced statistical measures and mean phase velocity.

  18. Chimera states in bursting neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bera, Bidesh K.; Ghosh, Dibakar; Lakshmanan, M.

    2016-01-01

    We study the existence of chimera states in pulse-coupled networks of bursting Hindmarsh-Rose neurons with nonlocal, global, and local (nearest neighbor) couplings. Through a linear stability analysis, we discuss the behavior of the stability function in the incoherent (i.e., disorder), coherent, chimera, and multichimera states. Surprisingly, we find that chimera and multichimera states occur even using local nearest neighbor interaction in a network of identical bursting neurons alone. This is in contrast with the existence of chimera states in populations of nonlocally or globally coupled oscillators. A chemical synaptic coupling function is used which plays a key role in the emergence of chimera states in bursting neurons. The existence of chimera, multichimera, coherent, and disordered states is confirmed by means of the recently introduced statistical measures and mean phase velocity.

  19. Dynamics of moment neuronal networks.

    PubMed

    Feng, Jianfeng; Deng, Yingchun; Rossoni, Enrico

    2006-04-01

    A theoretical framework is developed for moment neuronal networks (MNNs). Within this framework, the behavior of the system of spiking neurons is specified in terms of the first- and second-order statistics of their interspike intervals, i.e., the mean, the variance, and the cross correlations of spike activity. Since neurons emit and receive spike trains which can be described by renewal--but generally non-Poisson--processes, we first derive a suitable diffusion-type approximation of such processes. Two approximation schemes are introduced: the usual approximation scheme (UAS) and the Ornstein-Uhlenbeck scheme. It is found that both schemes approximate well the input-output characteristics of spiking models such as the IF and the Hodgkin-Huxley models. The MNN framework is then developed according to the UAS scheme, and its predictions are tested on a few examples.

  20. Towards a Neuronal Gauge Theory

    PubMed Central

    Sengupta, Biswa; Tozzi, Arturo; Cooray, Gerald K.; Douglas, Pamela K.; Friston, Karl J.

    2016-01-01

    Given the amount of knowledge and data accruing in the neurosciences, is it time to formulate a general principle for neuronal dynamics that holds at evolutionary, developmental, and perceptual timescales? In this paper, we propose that the brain (and other self-organised biological systems) can be characterised via the mathematical apparatus of a gauge theory. The picture that emerges from this approach suggests that any biological system (from a neuron to an organism) can be cast as resolving uncertainty about its external milieu, either by changing its internal states or its relationship to the environment. Using formal arguments, we show that a gauge theory for neuronal dynamics—based on approximate Bayesian inference—has the potential to shed new light on phenomena that have thus far eluded a formal description, such as attention and the link between action and perception. PMID:26953636

  1. Towards a Neuronal Gauge Theory.

    PubMed

    Sengupta, Biswa; Tozzi, Arturo; Cooray, Gerald K; Douglas, Pamela K; Friston, Karl J

    2016-03-01

    Given the amount of knowledge and data accruing in the neurosciences, is it time to formulate a general principle for neuronal dynamics that holds at evolutionary, developmental, and perceptual timescales? In this paper, we propose that the brain (and other self-organised biological systems) can be characterised via the mathematical apparatus of a gauge theory. The picture that emerges from this approach suggests that any biological system (from a neuron to an organism) can be cast as resolving uncertainty about its external milieu, either by changing its internal states or its relationship to the environment. Using formal arguments, we show that a gauge theory for neuronal dynamics--based on approximate Bayesian inference--has the potential to shed new light on phenomena that have thus far eluded a formal description, such as attention and the link between action and perception. PMID:26953636

  2. Correlations and Neuronal Population Information.

    PubMed

    Kohn, Adam; Coen-Cagli, Ruben; Kanitscheider, Ingmar; Pouget, Alexandre

    2016-07-01

    Brain function involves the activity of neuronal populations. Much recent effort has been devoted to measuring the activity of neuronal populations in different parts of the brain under various experimental conditions. Population activity patterns contain rich structure, yet many studies have focused on measuring pairwise relationships between members of a larger population-termed noise correlations. Here we review recent progress in understanding how these correlations affect population information, how information should be quantified, and what mechanisms may give rise to correlations. As population coding theory has improved, it has made clear that some forms of correlation are more important for information than others. We argue that this is a critical lesson for those interested in neuronal population responses more generally: Descriptions of population responses should be motivated by and linked to well-specified function. Within this context, we offer suggestions of where current theoretical frameworks fall short.

  3. Towards a Neuronal Gauge Theory.

    PubMed

    Sengupta, Biswa; Tozzi, Arturo; Cooray, Gerald K; Douglas, Pamela K; Friston, Karl J

    2016-03-01

    Given the amount of knowledge and data accruing in the neurosciences, is it time to formulate a general principle for neuronal dynamics that holds at evolutionary, developmental, and perceptual timescales? In this paper, we propose that the brain (and other self-organised biological systems) can be characterised via the mathematical apparatus of a gauge theory. The picture that emerges from this approach suggests that any biological system (from a neuron to an organism) can be cast as resolving uncertainty about its external milieu, either by changing its internal states or its relationship to the environment. Using formal arguments, we show that a gauge theory for neuronal dynamics--based on approximate Bayesian inference--has the potential to shed new light on phenomena that have thus far eluded a formal description, such as attention and the link between action and perception.

  4. Alcohol fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1990-07-01

    Ethanol is an alcohol made from grain that can be blended with gasoline to extend petroleum supplies and to increase gasoline octane levels. Congressional proposals to encourage greater use of alternative fuels could increase the demand for ethanol. This report evaluates the growth potential of the ethanol industry to meet future demand increases and the impacts increased production would have on American agriculture and the federal budget. It is found that ethanol production could double or triple in the next eight years, and that American farmers could provide the corn for this production increase. While corn growers would benefit, other agricultural segments would not; soybean producers, for example could suffer for increased corn oil production (an ethanol byproduct) and cattle ranchers would be faced with higher feed costs because of higher corn prices. Poultry farmers might benefit from lower priced feed. Overall, net farm cash income should increase, and consumers would see slightly higher food prices. Federal budget impacts would include a reduction in federal farm program outlays by an annual average of between $930 million (for double current production of ethanol) to $1.421 billion (for triple production) during the eight-year growth period. However, due to an partial tax exemption for ethanol blended fuels, federal fuel tax revenues could decrease by between $442 million and $813 million.

  5. Prospective Coding by Spiking Neurons.

    PubMed

    Brea, Johanni; Gaál, Alexisz Tamás; Urbanczik, Robert; Senn, Walter

    2016-06-01

    Animals learn to make predictions, such as associating the sound of a bell with upcoming feeding or predicting a movement that a motor command is eliciting. How predictions are realized on the neuronal level and what plasticity rule underlies their learning is not well understood. Here we propose a biologically plausible synaptic plasticity rule to learn predictions on a single neuron level on a timescale of seconds. The learning rule allows a spiking two-compartment neuron to match its current firing rate to its own expected future discounted firing rate. For instance, if an originally neutral event is repeatedly followed by an event that elevates the firing rate of a neuron, the originally neutral event will eventually also elevate the neuron's firing rate. The plasticity rule is a form of spike timing dependent plasticity in which a presynaptic spike followed by a postsynaptic spike leads to potentiation. Even if the plasticity window has a width of 20 milliseconds, associations on the time scale of seconds can be learned. We illustrate prospective coding with three examples: learning to predict a time varying input, learning to predict the next stimulus in a delayed paired-associate task and learning with a recurrent network to reproduce a temporally compressed version of a sequence. We discuss the potential role of the learning mechanism in classical trace conditioning. In the special case that the signal to be predicted encodes reward, the neuron learns to predict the discounted future reward and learning is closely related to the temporal difference learning algorithm TD(λ). PMID:27341100

  6. Copying and Evolution of Neuronal Topology

    PubMed Central

    Fernando, Chrisantha; Karishma, K. K.; Szathmáry, Eörs

    2008-01-01

    We propose a mechanism for copying of neuronal networks that is of considerable interest for neuroscience for it suggests a neuronal basis for causal inference, function copying, and natural selection within the human brain. To date, no model of neuronal topology copying exists. We present three increasingly sophisticated mechanisms to demonstrate how topographic map formation coupled with Spike-Time Dependent Plasticity (STDP) can copy neuronal topology motifs. Fidelity is improved by error correction and activity-reverberation limitation. The high-fidelity topology-copying operator is used to evolve neuronal topologies. Possible roles for neuronal natural selection are discussed. PMID:19020662

  7. Microstrip antenna on tunable substrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jose, K. A.; Varadan, Vijay K.; Varadan, Vasundara V.; Mohanan, P.

    1995-05-01

    The tunable patch antenna configurations are becoming popular and attractive in many aspects. This was mainly due to the advent of ferrite thin film technology and tunable substrate materials. The integration of monolithic microwave circuits and antennas are becoming easy today. In the development of magnetic tuning of microstrip patch on ferrite substrate is presented by Rainville and Harackewiez. Radiation characteristics of such antennas are presented by Pozer. Band width and radiation characteristics of such tunable antennas are measured and compared. Usually the substrate losses are considered in the analysis and metallization losses are assumed to be ideal. The analysis of magnetic tunable radiator including metallization and ferrite substrate losses are presented. However, all such tuning and integration of circuits and antennas are mainly on ferrite substrate due to magnetic tuning. Recently, Varadan et al. established that the BaxSr1-xTiO3 series ferroelectric materials such as Barium Strontium Titanate (BST) are well suited for microwave phase shifter applications. It could be possible to change the dielectric constant of these materials more than 50% depending on the BST composition, by changing the applied bias voltage. Also, the porosity of BST can be controlled during processing to produce dielectric constants in the range of 15 to 1500, with some trade off in tunability. In this paper, we are presenting the possibility of designing a microstrip patch antenna on such tunable substrate. Such antennas are having the major advantage of electronic tunability and compact size.

  8. Substrate channeling in proline metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Arentson, Benjamin W.; Sanyal, Nikhilesh; Becker, Donald F.

    2012-01-01

    Proline metabolism is an important pathway that has relevance in several cellular functions such as redox balance, apoptosis, and cell survival. Results from different groups have indicated that substrate channeling of proline metabolic intermediates may be a critical mechanism. One intermediate is pyrroline-5-carboxylate (P5C), which upon hydrolysis opens to glutamic semialdehyde (GSA). Recent structural and kinetic evidence indicate substrate channeling of P5C/GSA occurs in the proline catabolic pathway between the proline dehydrogenase and P5C dehydrogenase active sites of bifunctional proline utilization A (PutA). Substrate channeling in PutA is proposed to facilitate the hydrolysis of P5C to GSA which is unfavorable at physiological pH. The second intermediate, gamma-glutamyl phosphate, is part of the proline biosynthetic pathway and is extremely labile. Substrate channeling of gamma-glutamyl phosphate is thought to be necessary to protect it from bulk solvent. Because of the unfavorable equilibrium of P5C/GSA and the reactivity of gamma-glutamyl phosphate, substrate channeling likely improves the efficiency of proline metabolism. Here, we outline general strategies for testing substrate channeling and review the evidence for channeling in proline metabolism. PMID:22201749

  9. Fuel densifier converts biomass into fuel cubes

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1982-02-01

    A new cost-effective means to produce clean-burning and low cost commercial and industrial fuel is being introduced by Columbia Fuel Densification Corp., Phoenix. The Columbia Commercial Hydraulic Fuel Densifier converts raw biomass materials such as wood chips, paper, peat moss and rice hulls into densified fuel cubes. The densifier is mobile and its operation is briefly outlined.

  10. Electrodiagnosis of motor neuron disease.

    PubMed

    Duleep, Anuradha; Shefner, Jeremy

    2013-02-01

    Electrodiagnostic testing has proved useful in helping to establish the diagnosis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis by eliminating possible disease mimics and by demonstrating abnormalities in body areas that are clinically unaffected. Electrodiagnosis begins with an understanding of the clinical features of the disease, because clinical correlation is essential. To improve the sensitivity of the electrophysiologic evaluation, the Awaji criteria have been proposed as a modification to the revised El Escorial criteria. Although techniques to evaluate corticomotor neuron abnormalities and to quantify lower motor neuron loss have been developed, they remain primarily research techniques and have not yet influenced clinical practice.

  11. Calcium signals in olfactory neurons.

    PubMed

    Tareilus, E; Noé, J; Breer, H

    1995-11-01

    Laser scanning confocal microscopy in combination with the fluorescent calcium indicators Fluo-3 and Fura-Red was employed to estimate the intracellular concentration of free calcium ions in individual olfactory receptor neurons and to monitor temporal and spatial changes in the Ca(2+)-level upon stimulation. The chemosensory cells responded to odorants with a significant increase in the calcium concentration, preferentially in the dendritic knob. Applying various stimulation paradigma, it was found that in a population of isolated cells, subsets of receptor neurons display distinct patterns of responsiveness. PMID:7488645

  12. Calcium signals in olfactory neurons.

    PubMed

    Tareilus, E; Noé, J; Breer, H

    1995-11-01

    Laser scanning confocal microscopy in combination with the fluorescent calcium indicators Fluo-3 and Fura-Red was employed to estimate the intracellular concentration of free calcium ions in individual olfactory receptor neurons and to monitor temporal and spatial changes in the Ca(2+)-level upon stimulation. The chemosensory cells responded to odorants with a significant increase in the calcium concentration, preferentially in the dendritic knob. Applying various stimulation paradigma, it was found that in a population of isolated cells, subsets of receptor neurons display distinct patterns of responsiveness.

  13. Glutamate-induced metabolic changes influence the cytoplasmic redox state of hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Porras, Omar H; Stutzin, Andrés

    2011-07-22

    Brain cell metabolism is intimately associated with intracellular oxidation-reduction (redox) balance. Glutamatergic transmission is accompanied with changes in substrate preference in neurons. Therefore, we studied cytoplasmatic redox changes in hippocampal neurons in culture exposed to glutamate. Neurons were transfected with HyPer, a genetically encoded redox biosensor for hydrogen peroxide which allows real-time imaging of the redox state. The rate of fluorescence decay, corresponding to the reduction of the biosensor was found to be augmented by low doses of glutamate (10 μM) as well as by pharmacological stimulation of NMDA glutamate receptors. Acute chelation of extracellular Ca(2+) abolished the glutamate-induced effect observed on HyPer fluorescence. Additional experiments indicated that mitochondrial function and hence energetic substrate availability commands the redox state of neurons and is required for the glutamate effect observed on the biosensor signal. Furthermore, our results implicated astrocytic metabolism in the changes of neuronal redox state observed with glutamate. PMID:21708127

  14. Phosphorylation of sodium channel Na(v)1.8 by p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase increases current density in dorsal root ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Hudmon, Andy; Choi, Jin-Sung; Tyrrell, Lynda; Black, Joel A; Rush, Anthony M; Waxman, Stephen G; Dib-Hajj, Sulayman D

    2008-03-19

    The sensory neuron-specific sodium channel Na(v)1.8 and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase are potential therapeutic targets within nociceptive dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons in inflammatory, and possibly neuropathic, pain. Na(v)1.8 channels within nociceptive DRG neurons contribute most of the inward current underlying the depolarizing phase of action potentials. Nerve injury and inflammation of peripheral tissues cause p38 activation in DRG neurons, a process that may contribute to nociceptive neuron hyperexcitability, which is associated with pain. However, how substrates of activated p38 contribute to DRG neuron hyperexcitability is currently not well understood. We report here, for the first time, that Na(v)1.8 and p38 are colocalized in DRG neurons, that Na(v)1.8 within DRG neurons is a substrate for p38, and that direct phosphorylation of the Na(v)1.8 channel by p38 regulates its function in these neurons. We show that direct phosphorylation of Na(v)1.8 at two p38 phospho-acceptor serine residues on the L1 loop (S551 and S556) causes an increase in Na(v)1.8 current density that is not accompanied by changes in gating properties of the channel. Our study suggests a mechanism by which activated p38 contributes to inflammatory, and possibly neuropathic, pain through a p38-mediated increase of Na(v)1.8 current density. PMID:18354022

  15. Characterization of cutaneous and articular sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    da Silva Serra, Ines; Husson, Zoé; Bartlett, Jonathan D.

    2016-01-01

    Background A wide range of stimuli can activate sensory neurons and neurons innervating specific tissues often have distinct properties. Here, we used retrograde tracing to identify sensory neurons innervating the hind paw skin (cutaneous) and ankle/knee joints (articular), and combined immunohistochemistry and electrophysiology analysis to determine the neurochemical phenotype of cutaneous and articular neurons, as well as their electrical and chemical excitability. Results Immunohistochemistry analysis using RetroBeads as a retrograde tracer confirmed previous data that cutaneous and articular neurons are a mixture of myelinated and unmyelinated neurons, and the majority of both populations are peptidergic. In whole-cell patch-clamp recordings from cultured dorsal root ganglion neurons, voltage-gated inward currents and action potential parameters were largely similar between articular and cutaneous neurons, although cutaneous neuron action potentials had a longer half-peak duration (HPD). An assessment of chemical sensitivity showed that all neurons responded to a pH 5.0 solution, but that acid-sensing ion channel (ASIC) currents, determined by inhibition with the nonselective acid-sensing ion channel antagonist benzamil, were of a greater magnitude in cutaneous compared to articular neurons. Forty to fifty percent of cutaneous and articular neurons responded to capsaicin, cinnamaldehyde, and menthol, indicating similar expression levels of transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1), transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1), and transient receptor potential melastatin 8 (TRPM8), respectively. By contrast, significantly more articular neurons responded to ATP than cutaneous neurons. Conclusion This work makes a detailed characterization of cutaneous and articular sensory neurons and highlights the importance of making recordings from identified neuronal populations: sensory neurons innervating different tissues have subtly different properties

  16. [What mirror neurons have revealed: revisited].

    PubMed

    Murata, Akira; Maeda, Kazutaka

    2014-06-01

    The first paper on mirror neurons was published in 1992. In the span of over two decades since then, much knowledge about the relationship between social cognitive function and the motor control system has been accumulated. Direct matching of visual actions and their corresponding motor representations is the most important functional property of mirror neuron. Many studies have emphasized intrinsic simulation as a core concept for mirror neurons. Mirror neurons are thought to play a role in social cognitive function. However, the function of mirror neurons in the macaque remains unclear, because such cognitive functions are limited or lacking in macaque monkeys. It is therefore important to discuss these neurons in the context of motor function. Rizzolatti and colleagues have stressed that the most important function of mirror neurons in macaques is recognition of actions performed by other individuals. I suggest that mirror neurons in the Macaque inferior pariental lobule might be correlated with body schema. In the parieto-premotor network, matching of corollary discharge and actual sensory feedback is an essential neuronal operation. Recently, neurons showing mirror properties were found in some cortical areas outside the mirror neuron system. The current work would revisit the outcomes of mirror neuron studies to discuss the function of mirror neurons in the monkey.

  17. Which Neurons Will Be the Engram - Activated Neurons and/or More Excitable Neurons?

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Ji-il; Cho, Hye-Yeon; Han, Jin-Hee

    2016-01-01

    During past decades, the formation and storage principle of memory have received much attention in the neuroscience field. Although some studies have attempted to demonstrate the nature of the engram, elucidating the memory engram allocation mechanism was not possible because of the limitations of existing methods, which cannot specifically modulate the candidate neuronal population. Recently, the development of new techniques, which offer ways to mark and control specific populations of neurons, may accelerate solving this issue. Here, we review the recent advances, which have provided substantial evidence showing that both candidates (neuronal population that is activated by learning, and that has increased CREB level/excitability at learning) satisfy the criteria of the engram, which are necessary and sufficient for memory expression. PMID:27122991

  18. Mapping protease substrates using a biotinylated phage substrate library.

    SciTech Connect

    Scholle, M. D.; Kriplani, U.; Pabon, A.; Sishtla, K.; Glucksman, M. J.; Kay, B. K.; Biosciences Division; Chicago Medical School

    2005-05-05

    We describe a bacteriophage M13 substrate library encoding the AviTag (BirA substrate) and combinatorial heptamer peptides displayed at the N terminus of the mature form of capsid protein III. Phages are biotinylated efficiently (> or = 50%) when grown in E. coli cells coexpressing BirA, and such viral particles can be immobilized on a streptavidin-coated support and released by protease cleavage within the combinatorial peptide. We have used this library to map the specificity of human Factor Xa and a neuropeptidase, neurolysin (EC3.4.24.16). Validation by analysis of isolated peptide substrates has revealed that neurolysin recognizes the motif hydrophobic-X-Pro-Arg-hydrophobic, where Arg-hydrophobic is the scissile bond.

  19. NMNATs, evolutionarily conserved neuronal maintenance factors.

    PubMed

    Ali, Yousuf O; Li-Kroeger, David; Bellen, Hugo J; Zhai, R Grace; Lu, Hui-Chen

    2013-11-01

    Proper brain function requires neuronal homeostasis over a range of environmental challenges. Neuronal activity, injury, and aging stress the nervous system, and lead to neuronal dysfunction and degeneration. Nevertheless, most organisms maintain healthy neurons throughout life, implying the existence of active maintenance mechanisms. Recent studies have revealed a key neuronal maintenance and protective function for nicotinamide mononucleotide adenylyl transferases (NMNATs). We review evidence that NMNATs protect neurons through multiple mechanisms in different contexts, and highlight functions that either require or are independent of NMNAT catalytic activity. We then summarize data supporting a role for NMNATs in neuronal maintenance and raise intriguing questions on how NMNATs preserve neuronal integrity and facilitate proper neural function throughout life. PMID:23968695

  20. [The ontogeny of the mirror neuron system].

    PubMed

    Myowa-Yamakoshi, Masako

    2014-06-01

    Abstract Humans utilize the mirror neuron system to understand and predict others' actions. However, the ontogeny of the mirror neuron system remains unknown. Whether mirror neuron function is an innate trait or whether mirror neurons acquire their sensorimotor matching properties ontogenetically remains to be clarified. In this paper, I review the ontogenetic theory of the mirror neuron system. I then discuss the functioning of the mirror neuron system in the context of social cognitive abilities, which are unique to humans. Recently, some researchers argue that it is too early to interpret the function of mirror neurons as an understanding of the underlying psychological states of others. They imply that such functioning would require inferential cognitive processes that are known to involve areas outside the mirror neuron system. Filling in this missing link may be the key to elucidating the unique ability of humans to understand others' actions.

  1. Turning Heads: Development of Vertebrate Branchiomotor Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Chandrasekhar, Anand

    2007-01-01

    The cranial motor neurons innervate muscles that control eye, jaw, and facial movements of the vertebrate head and parasympathetic neurons that innervate certain glands and organs. These efferent neurons develop at characteristic locations in the brainstem, and their axons exit the neural tube in well-defined trajectories to innervate target tissues. This review is focused on a subset of cranial motor neurons called the branchiomotor neurons, which innervate muscles derived from the branchial (pharyngeal) arches. First, the organization of the branchiomotor pathways in zebrafish, chick, and mouse embryos will be compared, and the underlying axon guidance mechanisms will be addressed. Next, the molecular mechanisms that generate branchiomotor neurons and specify their identities will be discussed. Finally, the caudally directed or tangential migration of facial branchiomotor neurons will be examined. Given the advances in the characterization and analysis of vertebrate genomes, we can expect rapid progress in elucidating the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the development of these vital neuronal networks. PMID:14699587

  2. Regeneration: New Neurons Wire Up.

    PubMed

    Raymond, Pamela A

    2016-09-12

    Functional repair of damage in the nervous system requires re-establishment of precise patterns of synaptic connectivity. A new study shows that after selective ablation, zebrafish retinal neurons regenerate and reconstruct some, although not all, of their stereotypic wiring. PMID:27623258

  3. [Configuration generators of neuronal rhythm].

    PubMed

    Dunin-Barkovskiĭ, V L

    1984-01-01

    Neural nets that exhibit oscillations with a period n, so that n greater than N (N--number of neurons) are analysed. It is shown that the nets capable of learning can be taught to be patterned oscillators. These modes of activity may be considered as a generalization of selfwaves in topologically simple excitable tissues on more complex structures.

  4. Temporal oscillations in neuronal nets.

    PubMed

    Ermentrout, G B; Cowan, J D

    1979-04-18

    A model for the interactions of cortical neurons is derived and analyzed. It is shown that small amplitude spatially inhomogeneous standing oscillations can bifurcate from the rest state. In a periodic domain, traveling wave trains exist. Stability of these patterns is discussed in terms of biological parameters. Homoclinic and heteroclinic orbits are demonstrated for the space-clamped system.

  5. The Neuronal Infrastructure of Speaking

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Menenti, Laura; Segaert, Katrien; Hagoort, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Models of speaking distinguish producing meaning, words and syntax as three different linguistic components of speaking. Nevertheless, little is known about the brain's integrated neuronal infrastructure for speech production. We investigated semantic, lexical and syntactic aspects of speaking using fMRI. In a picture description task, we…

  6. Neuronal models of cognitive functions.

    PubMed

    Changeux, J P; Dehaene, S

    1989-11-01

    Understanding the neural bases of cognition has become a scientifically tractable problem, and neurally plausible models are proposed to establish a causal link between biological structure and cognitive function. To this end, levels of organization have to be defined within the functional architecture of neuronal systems. Transitions from any one of these interacting levels to the next are viewed in an evolutionary perspective. They are assumed to involve: (1) the production of multiple transient variations and (2) the selection of some of them by higher levels via the interaction with the outside world. The time-scale of these "evolutions" is expected to differ from one level to the other. In the course of development and in the adult this internal evolution is epigenetic and does not require alteration of the structure of the genome. A selective stabilization (and elimination) of synaptic connections by spontaneous and/or evoked activity in developing neuronal networks is postulated to contribute to the shaping of the adult connectivity within an envelope of genetically encoded forms. At a higher level, models of mental representations, as states of activity of defined populations of neurons, are discussed in terms of statistical physics, and their storage is viewed as a process of selection among variable and transient pre-representations. Theoretical models illustrate that cognitive functions such as short-term memory and handling of temporal sequences may be constrained by "microscopic" physical parameters. Finally, speculations are offered about plausible neuronal models and selectionist implementations of intentions. PMID:2691185

  7. 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

  8. Neuronal activity controls transsynaptic geometry

    PubMed Central

    Glebov, Oleg O.; Cox, Susan; Humphreys, Lawrence; Burrone, Juan

    2016-01-01

    The neuronal synapse is comprised of several distinct zones, including presynaptic vesicle zone (SVZ), active zone (AZ) and postsynaptic density (PSD). While correct relative positioning of these zones is believed to be essential for synaptic function, the mechanisms controlling their mutual localization remain unexplored. Here, we employ high-throughput quantitative confocal imaging, super-resolution and electron microscopy to visualize organization of synaptic subdomains in hippocampal neurons. Silencing of neuronal activity leads to reversible reorganization of the synaptic geometry, resulting in a increased overlap between immunostained AZ and PSD markers; in contrast, the SVZ-AZ spatial coupling is decreased. Bayesian blinking and bleaching (3B) reconstruction reveals that the distance between the AZ-PSD distance is decreased by 30 nm, while electron microscopy shows that the width of the synaptic cleft is decreased by 1.1 nm. Our findings show that multiple aspects of synaptic geometry are dynamically controlled by neuronal activity and suggest mutual repositioning of synaptic components as a potential novel mechanism contributing to the homeostatic forms of synaptic plasticity. PMID:26951792

  9. Neuronal damage in brain inflammation.

    PubMed

    Aktas, Orhan; Ullrich, Oliver; Infante-Duarte, Carmen; Nitsch, Robert; Zipp, Frauke

    2007-02-01

    In contrast to traditional textbook paradigms, recent studies indicate neuronal damage in classic neuroinflammatory diseases of the brain, such as multiple sclerosis or meningitis. In these cases, immune cells invade the central nervous system compartments, accompanied by a massive breakdown of the blood-brain barrier and typical changes of the cerebrospinal fluid. On the other hand, inflammation within the central nervous system is a common phenomenon even in classic noninflammatory brain diseases that are characterized by degeneration or trauma of neuronal structures, such as Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, or stroke. In these cases, inflammation is a frequent occurrence but displays different, more subtle, patterns compared with, for example, multiple sclerosis. Concepts for directly protecting neurons and axons in neuroinflammatory diseases may improve the outcome of the patients. In parallel, epidemiological and animal experimental evidences, as well as first clinical trials indicate the benefit of immunomodulatory therapies for classic noninflammatory brain diseases. We review the evidence for inflammatory neuronal damage and its clinical impact in the context of these diseases. PMID:17296833

  10. Mapping Generative Models onto a Network of Digital Spiking Neurons.

    PubMed

    Pedroni, Bruno U; Das, Srinjoy; Arthur, John V; Merolla, Paul A; Jackson, Bryan L; Modha, Dharmendra S; Kreutz-Delgado, Kenneth; Cauwenberghs, Gert

    2016-08-01

    Stochastic neural networks such as Restricted Boltzmann Machines (RBMs) have been successfully used in applications ranging from speech recognition to image classification, and are particularly interesting because of their potential for generative tasks. Inference and learning in these algorithms use a Markov Chain Monte Carlo procedure called Gibbs sampling, where a logistic function forms the kernel of this sampler. On the other side of the spectrum, neuromorphic systems have shown great promise for low-power and parallelized cognitive computing, but lack well-suited applications and automation procedures. In this work, we propose a systematic method for bridging the RBM algorithm and digital neuromorphic systems, with a generative pattern completion task as proof of concept. For this, we first propose a method of producing the Gibbs sampler using bio-inspired digital noisy integrate-and-fire neurons. Next, we describe the process of mapping generative RBMs trained offline onto the IBM TrueNorth neurosynaptic processor-a low-power digital neuromorphic VLSI substrate. Mapping these algorithms onto neuromorphic hardware presents unique challenges in network connectivity and weight and bias quantization, which, in turn, require architectural and design strategies for the physical realization. Generative performance is analyzed to validate the neuromorphic requirements and to best select the neuron parameters for the model. Lastly, we describe a design automation procedure which achieves optimal resource usage, accounting for the novel hardware adaptations. This work represents the first implementation of generative RBM inference on a neuromorphic VLSI substrate. PMID:27214915

  11. Extended Platinum Nanotubes as Fuel Cell Catalysts

    SciTech Connect

    Alia, S.; Pivovar, B. S.; Yan, Y.

    2012-01-01

    Energy consumption has relied principally on fossil fuels as an energy source; fuel cells, however, can provide a clean and sustainable alternative, an answer to the depletion and climate change concerns of fossil fuels. Within proton exchange membrane fuel cells, high catalyst cost and poor durability limit the commercial viability of the device. Recently, platinum nanotubes (PtNTs) were studied as durable, active catalysts, providing a platform to meet US Department of Energy vehicular activity targets.[1] Porous PtNTs were developed to increase nanotube surface area, improving mass activity for oxygen reduction without sacrificing durability.[2] Subsurface platinum was then replaced with palladium, forming platinum-coated palladium nanotubes.[3] By forming a core shell structure, platinum utilization was increased, reducing catalyst cost. Alternative substrates have also been examined, modifying platinum surface facets and increasing oxygen reduction specific activity. Through modification of the PtNT platform, catalyst limitations can be reduced, ensuring a commercially viable device.

  12. Design, Surface Treatment, Cellular Plating, and Culturing of Modular Neuronal Networks Composed of Functionally Inter-connected Circuits.

    PubMed

    Kanner, Sivan; Bisio, Marta; Cohen, Gilad; Goldin, Miri; Tedesco, Marieteresa; Hanein, Yael; Ben-Jacob, Eshel; Barzilai, Ari; Chiappalone, Michela; Bonifazi, Paolo

    2015-04-15

    The brain operates through the coordinated activation and the dynamic communication of neuronal assemblies. A major open question is how a vast repertoire of dynamical motifs, which underlie most diverse brain functions, can emerge out of a fixed topological and modular organization of brain circuits. Compared to in vivo studies of neuronal circuits which present intrinsic experimental difficulties, in vitro preparations offer a much larger possibility to manipulate and probe the structural, dynamical and chemical properties of experimental neuronal systems. This work describes an in vitro experimental methodology which allows growing of modular networks composed by spatially distinct, functionally interconnected neuronal assemblies. The protocol allows controlling the two-dimensional (2D) architecture of the neuronal network at different levels of topological complexity. A desired network patterning can be achieved both on regular cover slips and substrate embedded micro electrode arrays. Micromachined structures are embossed on a silicon wafer and used to create biocompatible polymeric stencils, which incorporate the negative features of the desired network architecture. The stencils are placed on the culturing substrates during the surface coating procedure with a molecular layer for promoting cellular adhesion. After removal of the stencils, neurons are plated and they spontaneously redirected to the coated areas. By decreasing the inter-compartment distance, it is possible to obtain either isolated or interconnected neuronal circuits. To promote cell survival, cells are co-cultured with a supporting neuronal network which is located at the periphery of the culture dish. Electrophysiological and optical recordings of the activity of modular networks obtained respectively by using substrate embedded micro electrode arrays and calcium imaging are presented. While each module shows spontaneous global synchronizations, the occurrence of inter-module synchronization

  13. Histone deacetylases and their role in motor neuron degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Lazo-Gómez, Rafael; Ramírez-Jarquín, Uri N.; Tovar-y-Romo, Luis B.; Tapia, Ricardo

    2013-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease, characterized by the progressive loss of motor neurons. The cause of this selective neuronal death is unknown, but transcriptional dysregulation is recently emerging as an important factor. The physical substrate for the regulation of the transcriptional process is chromatin, a complex assembly of histones and DNA. Histones are subject to several post-translational modifications, like acetylation, that are a component of the transcriptional regulation process. Histone acetylation and deacetylation is performed by a group of enzymes (histone acetyltransferases (HATs) and deacetylases, respectively) whose modulation can alter the transcriptional state of many regions of the genome, and thus may be an important target in diseases that share this pathogenic process, as is the case for ALS. This review will discuss the present evidence of transcriptional dysregulation in ALS, the role of histone deacetylases (HDACs) in disease pathogenesis, and the novel pharmacologic strategies that are being comprehensively studied to prevent motor neuron death, with focus on sirtuins (SIRT) and their effectors. PMID:24367290

  14. Activation of Brainstem Neurons by Underwater Diving in the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Panneton, W. Michael; Gan, Qi; Le, Jason; Livergood, Robert S.; Clerc, Philip; Juric, Rajko

    2012-01-01

    The mammalian diving response is a powerful autonomic adjustment to underwater submersion greatly affecting heart rate, arterial blood pressure, and ventilation. The bradycardia is mediated by the parasympathetic nervous system, arterial blood pressure is mediated via the sympathetic system and still other circuits mediate the respiratory changes. In the present study we investigate the cardiorespiratory responses and the brainstem neurons activated by voluntary diving of trained rats, and, compare them to control and swimming animals which did not dive. We show that the bradycardia and increase in arterial blood pressure induced by diving were significantly different than that induced by swimming. Neuronal activation was calculated after immunohistochemical processing of brainstem sections for Fos protein. Labeled neurons were counted in the caudal pressor area, the medullary dorsal horn, subnuclei of the nucleus tractus solitarii (NTS), the nucleus raphe pallidus (RPa), the rostroventrolateral medulla, the A5 area, the nucleus locus coeruleus, the Kölliker–Fuse area, and the external lateral and superior lateral subnuclei of the parabrachial nucleus. All these areas showed significant increases in Fos labeling when data from voluntary diving rats were compared to control rats and all but the commissural subnucleus of the NTS, A5 area, and RPa were significantly different from swimming rats. These data provide a substrate for more precise experiments to determine the role of these nuclei in the reflex circuits driving the diving response. PMID:22563319

  15. In vitro studies of primary explosive blast loading on neurons.

    PubMed

    Zander, Nicole E; Piehler, Thuvan; Boggs, Mary E; Banton, Rohan; Benjamin, Richard

    2015-09-01

    In a military setting, traumatic brain injury (TBI) is frequently caused by blast waves that can trigger a series of neuronal biochemical changes. Although many animal models have been used to study the effects of primary blast waves, elucidating the mechanisms of damage in a whole-animal model is extremely complex. In vitro models of primary blast, which allow for the deconvolution of mechanisms, are relatively scarce. It is largely unknown how structural damage at the cellular level impacts the functional activity at variable time scales after the TBI event. A novel in vitro system was developed to probe the effects of explosive blast (ranging from ∼25 to 40 psi) on dissociated neurons. PC12 neurons were cultured on laminin-coated substrates, submerged underwater, and subjected to single and multiple blasts in a controlled environment. Changes in cell membrane permeability, viability, and cell morphology were evaluated. Significant increases in axonal beading were observed in the injured cells. In addition, although cell death was minimal after a single insult, cell viability decreased significantly following repeated blast exposure. PMID:25914380

  16. Fuel utilization and fuel sensitivity of solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Kevin

    2011-03-01

    Fuel utilization and fuel sensitivity are two important process variables widely used in operation of SOFC cells, stacks, and generators. To illustrate the technical values, the definitions of these two variables as well as practical examples are particularly given in this paper. It is explicitly shown that the oxygen-leakage has a substantial effect on the actual fuel utilization, fuel sensitivity and V-I characteristics. An underestimation of the leakage flux could potentially results in overly consuming fuel and oxidizing Ni-based anode. A fuel sensitivity model is also proposed to help extract the leakage flux information from a fuel sensitivity curve. Finally, the "bending-over" phenomenon observed in the low-current range of a V-I curve measured at constant fuel-utilization is quantitatively coupled with leakage flux.

  17. Development of an advanced bond coat for solid oxide fuel cell interconnector applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yeh, An-Chou; Chen, Yu-Ming; Liu, Chien-Kuo; Shong, Wei-Ja

    2015-11-01

    An advanced bond coat has been developed for solid oxide fuel cell interconnector applications; a low thermal expansion superalloy has been selected as the substrate, and the newly developed bond coat is applied between the substrate and the LSM top coat. The bond coat composition is designed to be near thermodynamic equilibrium with the substrate to minimize interdiffusion with the substrate while providing oxidation protection for the substrate. The bond coat exhibits good oxidation resistance, a low area specific resistance, and a low thermal expansion coefficient at 800 °C; experimental results indicate that interdiffusion between the bond coat and the substrate can be hindered.

  18. Neuronal imprinting of human values.

    PubMed

    Delgado, J M

    2000-03-01

    In the 21st century, psychophysiology will face the challenge of establishing ethical principles and practical means for the genetic and social influencing of the development of human beings. Neuronal imprinting of beliefs and morality within infantile minds will be necessary for the peaceful coexistence of races and cultures. This process requires study and consideration, among others, of the following psychophysiological facts: (1) Genes do not transmit moral values. (2) Material support of physiological activities is necessary for the existence and development of mental functions. (3) Imprinting of human values is based on material changes within neuronal structures. (4) Early neuronal imprinting is performed without personal awareness or consent of the individual and depends on sensory inputs, mainly from the social structure of the group. (5) Biological structures lack values. Personal and social antagonisms do not depend on genes, but on cultural indoctrination. (6) Pleasure and punishment (positive and negative reinforcement) are the two main elements, which regulate animal and human behavior. (7) Values must be chosen by adults, who decide the questions 'why'? 'when'? 'which ones'?, 'who should teach'?, 'what?' and 'how'? (8) Many biological imperatives are shared by all animals and by all people. Human beings may be considered the 'crickets of the Universe', unable to understand the mysteries of nature because of our insufficient neuronal capacity. (9) Our emotional life is mainly related to the structure of the limbic system controlled by the neocortex. (10) New theories based on the integration of physics, chemistry, biology and other specific areas of knowledge, as proposed by the General Theory of Systems, will avoid 'opposites', favoring the acceptance of complementary aspects of reality. (11) Early education will promote preferential learning which depends on both genetic endowment and neuronal development influenced by experience. It is the

  19. Prospective Coding by Spiking Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Brea, Johanni; Gaál, Alexisz Tamás; Senn, Walter

    2016-01-01

    Animals learn to make predictions, such as associating the sound of a bell with upcoming feeding or predicting a movement that a motor command is eliciting. How predictions are realized on the neuronal level and what plasticity rule underlies their learning is not well understood. Here we propose a biologically plausible synaptic plasticity rule to learn predictions on a single neuron level on a timescale of seconds. The learning rule allows a spiking two-compartment neuron to match its current firing rate to its own expected future discounted firing rate. For instance, if an originally neutral event is repeatedly followed by an event that elevates the firing rate of a neuron, the originally neutral event will eventually also elevate the neuron’s firing rate. The plasticity rule is a form of spike timing dependent plasticity in which a presynaptic spike followed by a postsynaptic spike leads to potentiation. Even if the plasticity window has a width of 20 milliseconds, associations on the time scale of seconds can be learned. We illustrate prospective coding with three examples: learning to predict a time varying input, learning to predict the next stimulus in a delayed paired-associate task and learning with a recurrent network to reproduce a temporally compressed version of a sequence. We discuss the potential role of the learning mechanism in classical trace conditioning. In the special case that the signal to be predicted encodes reward, the neuron learns to predict the discounted future reward and learning is closely related to the temporal difference learning algorithm TD(λ). PMID:27341100

  20. Spiking neuron network Helmholtz machine

    PubMed Central

    Sountsov, Pavel; Miller, Paul

    2015-01-01

    An increasing amount of behavioral and neurophysiological data suggests that the brain performs optimal (or near-optimal) probabilistic inference and learning during perception and other tasks. Although many machine learning algorithms exist that perform inference and learning in an optimal way, the complete description of how one of those algorithms (or a novel algorithm) can be implemented in the brain is currently incomplete. There have been many proposed solutions that address how neurons can perform optimal inference but the question of how synaptic plasticity can implement optimal learning is rarely addressed. This paper aims to unify the two fields of probabilistic inference and synaptic plasticity by using a neuronal network of realistic model spiking neurons to implement a well-studied computational model called the Helmholtz Machine. The Helmholtz Machine is amenable to neural implementation as the algorithm it uses to learn its parameters, called the wake-sleep algorithm, uses a local delta learning rule. Our spiking-neuron network implements both the delta rule and a small example of a Helmholtz machine. This neuronal network can learn an internal model of continuous-valued training data sets without supervision. The network can also perform inference on the learned internal models. We show how various biophysical features of the neural implementation constrain the parameters of the wake-sleep algorithm, such as the duration of the wake and sleep phases of learning and the minimal sample duration. We examine the deviations from optimal performance and tie them to the properties of the synaptic plasticity rule. PMID:25954191

  1. Proteomic Substrate Identification for Membrane Proteases in the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Müller, Stephan A.; Scilabra, Simone D.; Lichtenthaler, Stefan F.

    2016-01-01

    Cell-cell communication in the brain is controlled by multiple mechanisms, including proteolysis. Membrane-bound proteases generate signaling molecules from membrane-bound precursor proteins and control the length and function of cell surface membrane proteins. These proteases belong to different families, including members of the “a disintegrin and metalloprotease” (ADAM), the beta-site amyloid precursor protein cleaving enzymes (BACE), membrane-type matrix metalloproteases (MT-MMP) and rhomboids. Some of these proteases, in particular ADAM10 and BACE1 have been shown to be essential not only for the correct development of the mammalian brain, but also for myelination and maintaining neuronal connections in the adult nervous system. Additionally, these proteases are considered as drug targets for brain diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD), schizophrenia and cancer. Despite their biomedical relevance, the molecular functions of these proteases in the brain have not been explored in much detail, as little was known about their substrates. This has changed with the recent development of novel proteomic methods which allow to identify substrates of membrane-bound proteases from cultured cells, primary neurons and other primary brain cells and even in vivo from minute amounts of mouse cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). This review summarizes the recent advances and highlights the strengths of the individual proteomic methods. Finally, using the example of the Alzheimer-related proteases BACE1, ADAM10 and γ-secretase, as well as ADAM17 and signal peptide peptidase like 3 (SPPL3), we illustrate how substrate identification with novel methods is instrumental in elucidating broad physiological functions of these proteases in the brain and other organs. PMID:27790089

  2. BlastNeuron for Automated Comparison, Retrieval and Clustering of 3D Neuron Morphologies.

    PubMed

    Wan, Yinan; Long, Fuhui; Qu, Lei; Xiao, Hang; Hawrylycz, Michael; Myers, Eugene W; Peng, Hanchuan

    2015-10-01

    Characterizing the identity and types of neurons in the brain, as well as their associated function, requires a means of quantifying and comparing 3D neuron morphology. Presently, neuron comparison methods are based on statistics from neuronal morphology such as size and number of branches, which are not fully suitable for detecting local similarities and differences in the detailed structure. We developed BlastNeuron to compare neurons in terms of their global appearance, detailed arborization patterns, and topological similarity. BlastNeuron first compares and clusters 3D neuron reconstructions based on global morphology features and moment invariants, independent of their orientations, sizes, level of reconstruction and other variations. Subsequently, BlastNeuron performs local alignment between any pair of retrieved neurons via a tree-topology driven dynamic programming method. A 3D correspondence map can thus be generated at the resolution of single reconstruction nodes. We applied BlastNeuron to three datasets: (1) 10,000+ neuron reconstructions from a public morphology database, (2) 681 newly and manually reconstructed neurons, and (3) neurons reconstructions produced using several independent reconstruction methods. Our approach was able to accurately and efficiently retrieve morphologically and functionally similar neuron structures from large morphology database, identify the local common structures, and find clusters of neurons that share similarities in both morphology and molecular profiles. PMID:26036213

  3. BlastNeuron for Automated Comparison, Retrieval and Clustering of 3D Neuron Morphologies.

    PubMed

    Wan, Yinan; Long, Fuhui; Qu, Lei; Xiao, Hang; Hawrylycz, Michael; Myers, Eugene W; Peng, Hanchuan

    2015-10-01

    Characterizing the identity and types of neurons in the brain, as well as their associated function, requires a means of quantifying and comparing 3D neuron morphology. Presently, neuron comparison methods are based on statistics from neuronal morphology such as size and number of branches, which are not fully suitable for detecting local similarities and differences in the detailed structure. We developed BlastNeuron to compare neurons in terms of their global appearance, detailed arborization patterns, and topological similarity. BlastNeuron first compares and clusters 3D neuron reconstructions based on global morphology features and moment invariants, independent of their orientations, sizes, level of reconstruction and other variations. Subsequently, BlastNeuron performs local alignment between any pair of retrieved neurons via a tree-topology driven dynamic programming method. A 3D correspondence map can thus be generated at the resolution of single reconstruction nodes. We applied BlastNeuron to three datasets: (1) 10,000+ neuron reconstructions from a public morphology database, (2) 681 newly and manually reconstructed neurons, and (3) neurons reconstructions produced using several independent reconstruction methods. Our approach was able to accurately and efficiently retrieve morphologically and functionally similar neuron structures from large morphology database, identify the local common structures, and find clusters of neurons that share similarities in both morphology and molecular profiles.

  4. Oscillating from Neurosecretion to Multitasking Dopamine Neurons.

    PubMed

    Grattan, David R; Akopian, Armen N

    2016-04-26

    In this issue of Cell Reports, Stagkourakis et al. (2016) report that oscillating hypothalamic TIDA neurons, previously thought to be simple neurosecretory neurons controlling pituitary prolactin secretion, control dopamine output via autoregulatory mechanisms and thus could potentially regulate other physiologically important hypothalamic neuronal circuits.

  5. Oscillating from Neurosecretion to Multitasking Dopamine Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Grattan, David R.; Akopian, Armen N.

    2016-01-01

    In this issue of Cell Reports, Stagkourakis et al. (2016) report that oscillating hypothalamic TIDA neurons, previously thought to be simple neurosecretory neurons controlling pituitary prolactin secretion, control dopamine output via autoregulatory mechanisms and thus could potentially regulate other physiologically important hypothalamic neuronal circuits. PMID:27119847

  6. Oscillating from Neurosecretion to Multitasking Dopamine Neurons.

    PubMed

    Grattan, David R; Akopian, Armen N

    2016-04-26

    In this issue of Cell Reports, Stagkourakis et al. (2016) report that oscillating hypothalamic TIDA neurons, previously thought to be simple neurosecretory neurons controlling pituitary prolactin secretion, control dopamine output via autoregulatory mechanisms and thus could potentially regulate other physiologically important hypothalamic neuronal circuits. PMID:27119847

  7. Spontaneous Calcium Changes in Micro Neuronal Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saito, Aki; Moriguchi, Hiroyuki; Iwabuchi, Shin; Goto, Miho; Takayama, Yuzo; Kotani, Kiyoshi; Jimbo, Yasuhiko

    We have developed a practical experimental method to mass-produce and maintain a variation of minimal neuronal networks (“micro neuronal networks”) consisted of a single to several neurons in culture using spray-patterning technique. In this paper, we could maintain the micro-cultures for one month or more by adding conditioned medium and carried out optical recording of spontaneous activity in micro neuronal networks and considered the interactions between them. To determine the interactions between micro neuronal networks, fluorescence changes in several small networks were simultaneously measured using calcium indicator dye fluo-4 AM, and time-series analysis was carried out using surrogate arrangements. By using the spray-patterning method, a large number of cell-adhesive micro regions were formed. Neurons extended neurites along the edge of the cell-adhesive micro regions and form micro neuronal networks. In part of micro regions, some neurite was protruded from the region, and thus micro neuronal networks were connected with synapses. In these networks, a single neuron-induced network activity was observed. On the other hand, even in morphologically non-connected micro neuronal networks, synchronous oscillations between micro neuronal networks were observed. Our micro-patterning methods and results provide the possibility that synchronous activity is occurred between morphologically non-connected neuronal networks. This suggest that the humoral factor is also a important component for network-wide dynamics.

  8. Primary Culture of Mouse Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Gaven, Florence; Marin, Philippe; Claeysen, Sylvie

    2014-01-01

    Dopaminergic neurons represent less than 1% of the total number of neurons in the brain. This low amount of neurons regulates important brain functions such as motor control, motivation, and working memory. Nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons selectively degenerate in Parkinson's disease (PD). This progressive neuronal loss is unequivocally associated with the motors symptoms of the pathology (bradykinesia, resting tremor, and muscular rigidity). The main agent responsible of dopaminergic neuron degeneration is still unknown. However, these neurons appear to be extremely vulnerable in diverse conditions. Primary cultures constitute one of the most relevant models to investigate properties and characteristics of dopaminergic neurons. These cultures can be submitted to various stress agents that mimic PD pathology and to neuroprotective compounds in order to stop or slow down neuronal degeneration. The numerous transgenic mouse models of PD that have been generated during the last decade further increased the interest of researchers for dopaminergic neuron cultures. Here, the video protocol focuses on the delicate dissection of embryonic mouse brains. Precise excision of ventral mesencephalon is crucial to obtain neuronal cultures sufficiently rich in dopaminergic cells to allow subsequent studies. This protocol can be realized with embryonic transgenic mice and is suitable for immunofluorescence staining, quantitative PCR, second messenger quantification, or neuronal death/survival assessment. PMID:25226064

  9. Aviation fuels outlook

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Momenthy, A. M.

    1980-01-01

    Options for satisfying the future demand for commercial jet fuels are analyzed. It is concluded that the most effective means to this end are to attract more refiners to the jet fuel market and encourage development of processes to convert oil shale and coal to transportation fuels. Furthermore, changing the U.S. refineries fuel specification would not significantly alter jet fuel availability.

  10. Fuel Burn Estimation Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chatterji, Gano

    2011-01-01

    Conclusions: Validated the fuel estimation procedure using flight test data. A good fuel model can be created if weight and fuel data are available. Error in assumed takeoff weight results in similar amount of error in the fuel estimate. Fuel estimation error bounds can be determined.

  11. 146. FUEL LINE TO SKID 2 (FUEL LOADER) IN FUEL ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    146. FUEL LINE TO SKID 2 (FUEL LOADER) IN FUEL CONTROL ROOM (215), LSB (BLDG. 751). LIQUID NITROGEN/HELIUM HEAT EXCHANGER ON RIGHT. - Vandenberg Air Force Base, Space Launch Complex 3, Launch Pad 3 East, Napa & Alden Roads, Lompoc, Santa Barbara County, CA

  12. Coatings on reflective mask substrates

    DOEpatents

    Tong, William Man-Wai; Taylor, John S.; Hector, Scott D.; Mangat, Pawitter J. S.; Stivers, Alan R.; Kofron, Patrick G.; Thompson, Matthew A.

    2002-01-01

    A process for creating a mask substrate involving depositing: 1) a coating on one or both sides of a low thermal expansion material EUVL mask substrate to improve defect inspection, surface finishing, and defect levels; and 2) a high dielectric coating, on the backside to facilitate electrostatic chucking and to correct for any bowing caused by the stress imbalance imparted by either other deposited coatings or the multilayer coating of the mask substrate. An film, such as TaSi, may be deposited on the front side and/or back of the low thermal expansion material before the material coating to balance the stress. The low thermal expansion material with a silicon overlayer and a silicon and/or other conductive underlayer enables improved defect inspection and stress balancing.

  13. Porous substrates filled with nanomaterials

    SciTech Connect

    Worsley, Marcus A.; Baumann, Theodore F.; Satcher, Jr., Joe H.; Stadermann, Michael

    2014-08-19

    A composition comprising: at least one porous carbon monolith, such as a carbon aerogel, comprising internal pores, and at least one nanomaterial, such as carbon nanotubes, disposed uniformly throughout the internal pores. The nanomaterial can be disposed in the middle of the monolith. In addition, a method for making a monolithic solid with both high surface area and good bulk electrical conductivity is provided. A porous substrate having a thickness of 100 microns or more and comprising macropores throughout its thickness is prepared. At least one catalyst is deposited inside the porous substrate. Subsequently, chemical vapor deposition is used to uniformly deposit a nanomaterial in the macropores throughout the thickness of the porous substrate. Applications include electrical energy storage, such as batteries and capacitors, and hydrogen storage.

  14. Neurons show distinctive DNA methylation profile and higher interindividual variations compared with non-neurons

    PubMed Central

    Iwamoto, Kazuya; Bundo, Miki; Ueda, Junko; Oldham, Michael C.; Ukai, Wataru; Hashimoto, Eri; Saito, Toshikazu; Geschwind, Daniel H.; Kato, Tadafumi

    2011-01-01

    Epigenome information in mammalian brain cells reflects their developmental history, neuronal activity, and environmental exposures. Studying the epigenetic modifications present in neuronal cells is critical to a more complete understanding of the role of the genome in brain functions. We performed comprehensive DNA methylation analysis in neuronal and non-neuronal nuclei obtained from the human prefrontal cortex. Neuronal nuclei manifest qualitatively and quantitatively distinctive DNA methylation patterns, including relative global hypomethylation, differential enrichment of transcription-factor binding sites, and higher methylation of genes expressed in astrocytes. Non-neuronal nuclei showed indistinguishable DNA methylation patterns from bulk cortex and higher methylation of synaptic transmission-related genes compared with neuronal nuclei. We also found higher variation in DNA methylation in neuronal nuclei, suggesting that neuronal cells have more potential ability to change their epigenetic status in response to developmental and environmental conditions compared with non-neuronal cells in the central nervous system. PMID:21467265

  15. Stepping Out of the Shade: Control of Neuronal Activity by the Scaffold Protein Kidins220/ARMS

    PubMed Central

    Scholz-Starke, Joachim; Cesca, Fabrizia

    2016-01-01

    The correct functioning of the nervous system depends on the exquisitely fine control of neuronal excitability and synaptic plasticity, which relies on an intricate network of protein-protein interactions and signaling that shapes neuronal homeostasis during development and in adulthood. In this complex scenario, Kinase D interacting substrate of 220 kDa/ankyrin repeat-rich membrane spanning (Kidins220/ARMS) acts as a multi-functional scaffold protein with preferential expression in the nervous system. Engaged in a plethora of interactions with membrane receptors, cytosolic signaling components and cytoskeletal proteins, Kidins220/ARMS is implicated in numerous cellular functions including neuronal survival, neurite outgrowth and maturation and neuronal activity, often in the context of neurotrophin (NT) signaling pathways. Recent studies have highlighted a number of cell- and context-specific roles for this protein in the control of synaptic transmission and neuronal excitability, which are at present far from being completely understood. In addition, some evidence has began to emerge, linking alterations of Kidins220 expression to the onset of various neurodegenerative diseases and neuropsychiatric disorders. In this review, we present a concise summary of our fragmentary knowledge of Kidins220/ARMS biological functions, focusing on the mechanism(s) by which it controls various aspects of neuronal activity. We have tried, where possible, to discuss the available evidence in the wider context of NT-mediated regulation, and to outline emerging roles of Kidins220/ARMS in human pathologies. PMID:27013979

  16. Regulation of ceramide-induced neuronal death: cell metabolism meets neurodegeneration.

    PubMed

    Arboleda, Gonzalo; Morales, Luis Carlos; Benítez, Bruno; Arboleda, Humberto

    2009-03-01

    The present review explores the role of ceramides in neuronal apoptosis, as well as the recent discovery of the signaling pathways involved in this process placing particular emphasis on the correlation between cellular metabolism and neuronal death. Endogenous levels of ceramides are increased following various pro-apoptotic stimuli which have been identified as potential causes of chronic and acute neurodegenerative diseases. Ceramides induce changes in multiple enzymes and cell signaling components. The early inhibition of the neuronal survival pathway regulated by phosphatidil-inositol-3-kinase/protein kinase B or AKT mediated by ceramide may be a relevant early event in the decision of neuronal survival/death. It may perturb several molecular and metabolic functions. In particular it might decrease glycolysis through rapid modulation of hexokinase activity. This would in turn generate limited amounts of mitochondrial substrates leading to mitochondrial dysfunction and neuronal apoptosis. Subtle and early metabolic alterations caused by inhibition of the PI3K/AKT pathway mediated by ceramide may potentially work with genes associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease. Together they may be determinant steps in downstream events leading to neuronal apoptosis. Therefore, reinforcement of the PI3K/AKT pathway could constitute an important neuroprotective strategy.

  17. Stepping Out of the Shade: Control of Neuronal Activity by the Scaffold Protein Kidins220/ARMS.

    PubMed

    Scholz-Starke, Joachim; Cesca, Fabrizia

    2016-01-01

    The correct functioning of the nervous system depends on the exquisitely fine control of neuronal excitability and synaptic plasticity, which relies on an intricate network of protein-protein interactions and signaling that shapes neuronal homeostasis during development and in adulthood. In this complex scenario, Kinase D interacting substrate of 220 kDa/ankyrin repeat-rich membrane spanning (Kidins220/ARMS) acts as a multi-functional scaffold protein with preferential expression in the nervous system. Engaged in a plethora of interactions with membrane receptors, cytosolic signaling components and cytoskeletal proteins, Kidins220/ARMS is implicated in numerous cellular functions including neuronal survival, neurite outgrowth and maturation and neuronal activity, often in the context of neurotrophin (NT) signaling pathways. Recent studies have highlighted a number of cell- and context-specific roles for this protein in the control of synaptic transmission and neuronal excitability, which are at present far from being completely understood. In addition, some evidence has began to emerge, linking alterations of Kidins220 expression to the onset of various neurodegenerative diseases and neuropsychiatric disorders. In this review, we present a concise summary of our fragmentary knowledge of Kidins220/ARMS biological functions, focusing on the mechanism(s) by which it controls various aspects of neuronal activity. We have tried, where possible, to discuss the available evidence in the wider context of NT-mediated regulation, and to outline emerging roles of Kidins220/ARMS in human pathologies. PMID:27013979

  18. Temperature response of the neuronal cytoskeleton mapped via atomic force and fluorescence microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spedden, Elise; Kaplan, David L.; Staii, Cristian

    2013-10-01

    Neuronal cells change their growth properties in response to external physical stimuli such as variations in external temperature, stiffness of the growth substrate, or topographical guidance cues. Detailed knowledge of the mechanisms that control these biomechanical responses is necessary for understanding the basic principles that underlie neuronal growth and regeneration. Here, we present elasticity maps of living cortical neurons (embryonic rat) as a function of temperature, and correlate these maps to the locations of internal structural components of the cytoskeleton. Neurons display a significant increase in the average elastic modulus upon a decrease in ambient temperature from 37 to 25 °C. We demonstrate that the dominant mechanism by which the elasticity of the neurons changes in response to temperature is the stiffening of the actin components of the cytoskeleton induced by myosin II. We also report a reversible shift in the location and composition of the high-stiffness areas of the neuron cytoskeleton with temperature. At 37 °C the areas of the cell displaying high elastic modulus overlap with the tubulin-dense regions, while at 25 °C these high-stiffness areas correspond to the actin-dense regions of the cytoskeleton. These results demonstrate the importance of considering temperature effects when investigating cytoskeletal dynamics in cells.

  19. Onset of electrical excitability during a period of circus plasma membrane movements in differentiating Xenopus neurons.

    PubMed

    Olson, E C

    1996-08-15

    Living neurons are usually first identifiable in primary cultures at the time of neurite initiation, and studies of excitability have been restricted largely to the subsequent period. A morphological early marker is described that identifies neurons for whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings before neurite initiation. Video time-lapse recordings of cultured cells dissociated from neurectoderm of Xenopus neural plate stage embryos reveal cells demonstrating circus movements, in which blebs of plasma membrane propagate around the cell circumference within a period of several minutes. All neurons demonstrate circus movements before morphological differentiation; the fraction of cells exhibiting circus movements that differentiate morphologically depends on the substrate on which they are cultured. Blockade of circus activity with cytochalasin B does not prevent neuronal differentiation. Circus movements are not neurectoderm-specific because they similarly predict differentiation of myocytes developing in mesodermal cultures. Initially inexcitable, neurons develop voltage-dependent K+, Na+, and Ca2+ currents during the period of several hours in which they exhibit circus movements. The early development of depolarization-induced elevations of [Ca2+]i several hours before morphological differentiation corresponds to the previously described onset of functionally significant spontaneous elevations of [Ca2+]i in these neurons and demonstrates a role for early expression of voltage-dependent ion channels.

  20. Functional Interaction between the Scaffold Protein Kidins220/ARMS and Neuronal Voltage-Gated Na+ Channels*

    PubMed Central

    Cesca, Fabrizia; Satapathy, Annyesha; Ferrea, Enrico; Nieus, Thierry; Benfenati, Fabio; Scholz-Starke, Joachim

    2015-01-01

    Kidins220 (kinase D-interacting substrate of 220 kDa)/ankyrin repeat-rich membrane spanning (ARMS) acts as a signaling platform at the plasma membrane and is implicated in a multitude of neuronal functions, including the control of neuronal activity. Here, we used the Kidins220−/− mouse model to study the effects of Kidins220 ablation on neuronal excitability. Multielectrode array recordings showed reduced evoked spiking activity in Kidins220−/− hippocampal networks, which was compatible with the increased excitability of GABAergic neurons determined by current-clamp recordings. Spike waveform analysis further indicated an increased sodium conductance in this neuronal subpopulation. Kidins220 association with brain voltage-gated sodium channels was shown by co-immunoprecipitation experiments and Na+ current recordings in transfected HEK293 cells, which revealed dramatic alterations of kinetics and voltage dependence. Finally, an in silico interneuronal model incorporating the Kidins220-induced Na+ current alterations reproduced the firing phenotype observed in Kidins220−/− neurons. These results identify Kidins220 as a novel modulator of Nav channel activity, broadening our understanding of the molecular mechanisms regulating network excitability. PMID:26037926

  1. Light-emitting channelrhodopsins for combined optogenetic and chemical-genetic control of neurons.

    PubMed

    Berglund, Ken; Birkner, Elisabeth; Augustine, George J; Hochgeschwender, Ute

    2013-01-01

    Manipulation of neuronal activity through genetically targeted actuator molecules is a powerful approach for studying information flow in the brain. In these approaches the genetically targeted component, a receptor or a channel, is activated either by a small molecule (chemical genetics) or by light from a physical source (optogenetics). We developed a hybrid technology that allows control of the same neurons by both optogenetic and chemical genetic means. The approach is based on engineered chimeric fusions of a light-generating protein (luciferase) to a light-activated ion channel (channelrhodopsin). Ionic currents then can be activated by bioluminescence upon activation of luciferase by its substrate, coelenterazine (CTZ), as well as by external light. In cell lines, expression of the fusion of Gaussia luciferase to Channelrhodopsin-2 yielded photocurrents in response to CTZ. Larger photocurrents were produced by fusing the luciferase to Volvox Channelrhodopsin-1. This version allowed chemical modulation of neuronal activity when expressed in cultured neurons: CTZ treatment shifted neuronal responses to injected currents and sensitized neurons to fire action potentials in response to subthreshold synaptic inputs. These luminescent channelrhodopsins--or luminopsins--preserve the advantages of light-activated ion channels, while extending their capabilities. Our proof-of-principle results suggest that this novel class of tools can be improved and extended in numerous ways. PMID:23544095

  2. Depletion of catecholaminergic neurons of the rostral ventrolateral medulla in multiple systems atrophy with autonomic failure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benarroch, E. E.; Smithson, I. L.; Low, P. A.; Parisi, J. E.

    1998-01-01

    The ventrolateral portion of the intermediate reticular formation of the medulla (ventrolateral medulla, VLM), including the C1/A1 groups of catecholaminergic neurons, is thought to be involved in control of sympathetic cardiovascular outflow, cardiorespiratory interactions, and reflex control of vasopressin release. As all these functions are affected in patients with multiple systems atrophy (MSA) with autonomic failure, we sought to test the hypothesis that catecholaminergic (tyrosine hydroxylase [TH]-positive) neurons of the VLM are depleted in these patients. Medullas were obtained at autopsy from 4 patients with MSA with prominent autonomic failure and 5 patients with no neurological disease. Patients with MSA had laboratory evidence of severe adrenergic sudomotor and cardiovagal failure. Tissue was immersion fixed in 2% paraformaldehyde at 4 degrees C for 24 hours and cut into 1-cm blocks in the coronal plane from throughout the medulla. Serial 50-microm sections were collected and one section every 300 microm was stained for TH. There was a pronounced depletion of TH neurons in the rostral VLM in all cases of MSA. There was also significant reduction of TH neurons in the caudal VLM in 3 MSA patients compared with 3 control subjects. In 2 MSA cases and in 2 control subjects, the thoracic spinal cord was available for study. There was also depletion of TH fibers and sympathetic preganglionic neurons (SPNs) in the 2 MSA cases examined. Thus, depletion of catecholaminergic neurons in the VLM may provide a substrate for some of the autonomic and endocrine manifestations of MSA.

  3. Circuit Architecture of VTA Dopamine Neurons Revealed by Systematic Input-Output Mapping.

    PubMed

    Beier, Kevin T; Steinberg, Elizabeth E; DeLoach, Katherine E; Xie, Stanley; Miyamichi, Kazunari; Schwarz, Lindsay; Gao, Xiaojing J; Kremer, Eric J; Malenka, Robert C; Luo, Liqun

    2015-07-30

    Dopamine (DA) neurons in the midbrain ventral tegmental area (VTA) integrate complex inputs to encode multiple signals that influence motivated behaviors via diverse projections. Here, we combine axon-initiated viral transduction with rabies-mediated trans-synaptic tracing and Cre-based cell-type-specific targeting to systematically map input-output relationships of VTA-DA neurons. We found that VTA-DA (and VTA-GABA) neurons receive excitatory, inhibitory, and modulatory input from diverse sources. VTA-DA neurons projecting to different forebrain regions exhibit specific biases in their input selection. VTA-DA neurons projecting to lateral and medial nucleus accumbens innervate largely non-overlapping striatal targets, with the latter also sending extensive extra-striatal axon collaterals. Using electrophysiology and behavior, we validated new circuits identified in our tracing studies, including a previously unappreciated top-down reinforcing circuit from anterior cortex to lateral nucleus accumbens via VTA-DA neurons. This study highlights the utility of our viral-genetic tracing strategies to elucidate the complex neural substrates that underlie motivated behaviors.

  4. Nanostructured Substrates for Optical Sensing

    PubMed Central

    Kemling, Jonathan W.; Qavi, Abraham J.; Bailey, Ryan C.

    2011-01-01

    Sensors that change color have the advantages of versatility, ease of use, high sensitivity, and low cost. The recent development of optically based chemical sensing platforms has increasingly employed substrates manufactured with advanced processing or fabrication techniques to provide precise control over shape and morphology of the sensor micro- and nano-structure. New sensors have resulted with improved capabilities for a number of sensing applications, including the detection of biomolecules and environmental monitoring. This perspective focuses on recent optical sensor devices that utilize nanostructured substrates. PMID:22174955

  5. Adsorption on a stepped substrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merikoski, J.; Timonen, J.; Kaski, K.

    1994-09-01

    The effect of substrate steps on the adsorption of particles is considered. The problem is formulated as a lattice-gas model with nearest neighbor interactions and it is studied by a numerical transfer-matrix method. In particular, the influence of the substrate-induced row potential on adsorbed monolayers is discussed. It is found that strong row-transition-like features appear in the presence of a row potential and it is suggested that these may be seen in adsorption on vicinal faces.

  6. Vacuum-assisted Fluid Flow in Microchannels to Pattern Substrates and Cells

    PubMed Central

    Shrirao, Anil B.; Kung, Frank H.; Yip, Derek; Cho, Cheul H.; Townes-Anderson, Ellen

    2014-01-01

    Substrate and cell patterning are widely used techniques in cell biology to study cell-to-cell and cell-to-substrate interactions. Conventional patterning techniques work well only with simple shapes, small areas and selected bio-materials. This paper describes a method to distribute cell suspensions as well as substrate solutions into complex, long, closed (dead-end) polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microchannels using negative pressure. Our method builds upon a previous vacuum-assisted method used for micromolding (Jeon, Choi et al. 1999) and successfully patterned collagen-I, fibronectin and Sal-1 substrates on glass and polystyrene surfaces, filling microchannels with lengths up to 120 mm and covering areas up to 13 × 10 mm2. Vacuum-patterned substrates were subsequently used to culture mammalian PC12 and fibroblast cells and amphibian neurons. Cells were also patterned directly by injecting cell suspensions into microchannels using vacuum. Fibroblast and neuronal cells patterned using vacuum showed normal growth and minimal cell death indicating no adverse effects of vacuum on cells. Our method fills reversibly sealed PDMS microchannels. This enables the user to remove the PDMS microchannel cast and access the patterned biomaterial or cells for further experimental purposes. Overall, this is a straightforward technique that has broad applicability for cell biology. PMID:24989641

  7. The role of insulin receptor substrate 2 in hypothalamic and β cell function

    PubMed Central

    Choudhury, Agharul I.; Heffron, Helen; Smith, Mark A.; Al-Qassab, Hind; Xu, Allison W.; Selman, Colin; Simmgen, Marcus; Clements, Melanie; Claret, Marc; MacColl, Gavin; Bedford, David C.; Hisadome, Kazunari; Diakonov, Ivan; Moosajee, Vazira; Bell, Jimmy D.; Speakman, John R.; Batterham, Rachel L.; Barsh, Gregory S.; Ashford, Michael L.J.; Withers, Dominic J.

    2005-01-01

    Insulin receptor substrate 2 (Irs2) plays complex roles in energy homeostasis. We generated mice lacking Irs2 in β cells and a population of hypothalamic neurons (RIPCreIrs2KO), in all neurons (NesCreIrs2KO), and in proopiomelanocortin neurons (POMCCreIrs2KO) to determine the role of Irs2 in the CNS and β cell. RIPCreIrs2KO mice displayed impaired glucose tolerance and reduced β cell mass. Overt diabetes did not ensue, because β cells escaping Cre-mediated recombination progressively populated islets. RIPCreIrs2KO and NesCreIrs2KO mice displayed hyperphagia, obesity, and increased body length, which suggests altered melanocortin action. POMCCreIrs2KO mice did not display this phenotype. RIPCreIrs2KO and NesCreIrs2KO mice retained leptin sensitivity, which suggests that CNS Irs2 pathways are not required for leptin action. NesCreIrs2KO and POMCCreIrs2KO mice did not display reduced β cell mass, but NesCreIrs2KO mice displayed mild abnormalities of glucose homeostasis. RIPCre neurons did not express POMC or neuropeptide Y. Insulin and a melanocortin agonist depolarized RIPCre neurons, whereas leptin was ineffective. Insulin hyperpolarized and leptin depolarized POMC neurons. Our findings demonstrate a critical role for IRS2 in β cell and hypothalamic function and provide insights into the role of RIPCre neurons, a distinct hypothalamic neuronal population, in growth and energy homeostasis. PMID:15841180

  8. Foxp2 regulates neuronal differentiation and neuronal subtype specification.

    PubMed

    Chiu, Yi-Chi; Li, Ming-Yang; Liu, Yuan-Hsuan; Ding, Jing-Ya; Yu, Jenn-Yah; Wang, Tsu-Wei

    2014-07-01

    Mutations of the transcription factor FOXP2 in humans cause a severe speech and language disorder. Disruption of Foxp2 in songbirds or mice also leads to deficits in song learning or ultrasonic vocalization, respectively. These data suggest that Foxp2 plays important roles in the developing nervous system. However, the mechanism of Foxp2 in regulating neural development remains elusive. In the current study, we found that Foxp2 increased neuronal differentiation without affecting cell proliferation and cell survival in primary neural progenitors from embryonic forebrains. Foxp2 induced the expression of platelet-derived growth factor receptor α, which mediated the neurognic effect of Foxp2. In addition, Foxp2 positively regulated the differentiation of medium spiny neurons derived from the lateral ganglionic eminence and negatively regulated the formation of interneurons derived from dorsal medial ganglionic eminence by interacting with the Sonic hedgehog pathway. Taken together, our results suggest that Foxp2 regulates multiple aspects of neuronal development in the embryonic forebrain.

  9. Morphological homogeneity of neurons: searching for outlier neuronal cells.

    PubMed

    Zawadzki, Krissia; Feenders, Christoph; Viana, Matheus P; Kaiser, Marcus; Costa, Luciano da F

    2012-10-01

    We report a morphology-based approach for the automatic identification of outlier neurons, as well as its application to the NeuroMorpho.org database, with more than 5,000 neurons. Each neuron in a given analysis is represented by a feature vector composed of 20 measurements, which are then projected into a two-dimensional space by applying principal component analysis. Bivariate kernel density estimation is then used to obtain the probability distribution for the group of cells, so that the cells with highest probabilities are understood as archetypes while those with the smallest probabilities are classified as outliers. The potential of the methodology is illustrated in several cases involving uniform cell types as well as cell types for specific animal species. The results provide insights regarding the distribution of cells, yielding single and multi-variate clusters, and they suggest that outlier cells tend to be more planar and tortuous. The proposed methodology can be used in several situations involving one or more categories of cells, as well as for detection of new categories and possible artifacts. PMID:22615032

  10. Carburetor fuel discharge assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Yost, R.M.

    1993-06-29

    An improved carburetor for use on an internal combustion engine is described, the carburetor having an airflow passage and fuel discharge means for admitting fuel into the airflow passage for mixing the fuel with air flowing in the airflow passage to form a fuel/air mixture to be supplied to the combustion chamber(s) of the engine, the fuel discharge means including a fuel discharge assembly which comprises a hollow discharge tube and fuel supplying means connected to the discharge tube for admitting fuel into the interior of the discharge tube, wherein the discharge tube has a longitudinal internal bore in fluid communication with the fuel supplying means, wherein the internal bore extends between an inlet that is closest to the fuel supplying means and an outlet that is furthest from the fuel supplying means with the outlet of the bore being located within the airflow passage of the carburetor to supply fuel into this passage after the fuel passes from the fuel supplying means through the internal bore of the discharge tube, wherein the improvement relates to the fuel discharge assembly and comprises: a hollow fuel flow guide tube telescopically received inside the internal bore of the discharge tube, wherein the fuel flow guide tube extends from approximately the location of the inlet of the bore up at least a portion of the length of the bore towards the outlet of the bore to conduct fuel from the fuel supplying means into the bore of the discharge tube.

  11. Fuel processors for fuel cell APU applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aicher, T.; Lenz, B.; Gschnell, F.; Groos, U.; Federici, F.; Caprile, L.; Parodi, L.

    The conversion of liquid hydrocarbons to a hydrogen rich product gas is a central process step in fuel processors for auxiliary power units (APUs) for vehicles of all kinds. The selection of the reforming process depends on the fuel and the type of the fuel cell. For vehicle power trains, liquid hydrocarbons like gasoline, kerosene, and diesel are utilized and, therefore, they will also be the fuel for the respective APU systems. The fuel cells commonly envisioned for mobile APU applications are molten carbonate fuel cells (MCFC), solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC), and proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFC). Since high-temperature fuel cells, e.g. MCFCs or SOFCs, can be supplied with a feed gas that contains carbon monoxide (CO) their fuel processor does not require reactors for CO reduction and removal. For PEMFCs on the other hand, CO concentrations in the feed gas must not exceed 50 ppm, better 20 ppm, which requires additional reactors downstream of the reforming reactor. This paper gives an overview of the current state of the fuel processor development for APU applications and APU system developments. Furthermore, it will present the latest developments at Fraunhofer ISE regarding fuel processors for high-temperature fuel cell APU systems on board of ships and aircrafts.

  12. The Ketone Body, β-Hydroxybutyrate Stimulates the Autophagic Flux and Prevents Neuronal Death Induced by Glucose Deprivation in Cortical Cultured Neurons.

    PubMed

    Camberos-Luna, Lucy; Gerónimo-Olvera, Cristian; Montiel, Teresa; Rincon-Heredia, Ruth; Massieu, Lourdes

    2016-03-01

    Glucose is the major energy substrate in brain, however, during ketogenesis induced by starvation or prolonged hypoglycemia, the ketone bodies (KB), acetoacetate and β-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) can substitute for glucose. KB improve neuronal survival in diverse injury models, but the mechanisms by which KB prevent neuronal damage are still not well understood. In the present study we have investigated whether protection by the D isomer of BHB (D-BHB) against neuronal death induced by glucose deprivation (GD), is related to autophagy. Autophagy is a lysosomal-dependent degradation process activated during nutritional stress, which leads to the digestion of damaged proteins and organelles providing energy for cell survival. Results show that autophagy is activated in cortical cultured neurons during GD, as indicated by the increase in the levels of the lipidated form of the microtubule associated protein light chain 3 (LC3-II), and the number of autophagic vesicles. At early phases of glucose reintroduction (GR), the levels of p62 declined suggesting that the degradation of the autophagolysosomal content takes place at this time. In cultures exposed to GD and GR in the presence of D-BHB, the levels of LC3-II and p62 rapidly declined and remained low during GR, suggesting that the KB stimulates the autophagic flux preventing autophagosome accumulation and improving neuronal survival.

  13. Ketamine anesthesia helps preserve neuronal viability.

    PubMed

    de Oliveira, Ramatis B; Graham, Brett; Howlett, Marcus C H; Gravina, Fernanda S; Oliveira, Max W S; Imtiaz, Mohammad S; Callister, Robert J; Lim, Rebecca; Brichta, Alan M; van Helden, Dirk F

    2010-06-15

    The dissociative anesthetic ketamine that acts as an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) antagonist has been reported to improve neurological damage after experimental ischemic challenges. Here we show that deep anesthesia with ketamine before euthanasia by decapitation improves the quality of neonatal mouse neuronal brain slice preparations. Specifically we found that neurons of the locus coeruleus (LC) and hypoglossal motor neurons had significantly higher input resistances, and LC neurons that generally are difficult to voltage control, could be more reliably voltage clamped compared to control neurons. PMID:20380852

  14. Response of pontomedullary reticulospinal neurons to vestibular stimuli in vertical planes. Role in vertical vestibulospinal reflexes of the decerebrate cat

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bolton, P. S.; Goto, T.; Schor, R. H.; Wilson, V. J.; Yamagata, Y.; Yates, B. J.

    1992-01-01

    1. To investigate the neural substrate of vestibulospinal reflexes in decerebrate cats, we studied the responses of pontomedullary reticulospinal neurons to natural stimulation of the labyrinth in vertical planes. Our principal aim was to determine whether reticulospinal neurons that terminate in, or are likely to give off collaterals to, the upper cervical segments had properties similar to those of the vestibulocollic reflex (VCR). 2. Antidromic stimulation was used to determine whether the neurons projected to the neck, lower cervical, thoracic, or lumbar levels. Dynamics of the responses of spontaneously firing neurons were studied with sinusoidal stimuli delivered at 0.05-1 Hz and aligned to the plane of body rotation, that produced maximal modulation of the neuron (response vector orientation). Each neuron was assigned a vestibular input classification of otolith, vertical canal, otolith + canal, or spatial-temporal convergence (STC). 3. We found, in agreement with previous studies, that the largest fraction of pontomedullary reticulospinal neurons projected to the lumbar cord, and that only a small number ended in the neck segments. Neurons projecting to all levels of the spinal cord had similar responses to labyrinth stimulation. 4. Reticulospinal neurons that received only vertical canal inputs were rare (1 of 67 units). Most reticulospinal neurons (48%) received predominant otolith inputs, 18% received otolith + canal input, and only 9% had STC behavior. These data are in sharp contrast to the results of our previous studies of vestibulospinal neurons. A considerable portion of vestibulospinal neurons receives vertical canal input (38%), fewer receive predominantly otolith input (22%), whereas the proportion that have otolith + canal input or STC behavior is similar to our present reticulospinal data. 5. The response vector orientations of our reticulospinal neurons, particularly those with canal inputs (canal, otolith + canal, STC) were predominantly in

  15. Ionic mechanisms of spinal neuronal cold hypersensitivity in ciguatera.

    PubMed

    Patel, Ryan; Brice, Nicola L; Lewis, Richard J; Dickenson, Anthony H

    2015-12-01

    Cold hypersensitivity is evident in a range of neuropathies and can evoke sensations of paradoxical burning cold pain. Ciguatoxin poisoning is known to induce a pain syndrome caused by consumption of contaminated tropical fish that can persist for months and include pruritus and cold allodynia; at present no suitable treatment is available. This study examined, for the first time, the neural substrates and molecular components of Pacific ciguatoxin-2-induced cold hypersensitivity. Electrophysiological recordings of dorsal horn lamina V/VI wide dynamic range neurones were made in non-sentient rats. Subcutaneous injection of 10 nm ciguatoxin-2 into the receptive field increased neuronal responses to innocuous and noxious cooling. In addition, neuronal responses to low-threshold but not noxious punctate mechanical stimuli were also elevated. The resultant cold hypersensitivity was not reversed by 6-({2-[2-fluoro-6-(trifluoromethyl)phenoxy]-2-methylpropyl}carbamoyl)pyridine-3-carboxylic acid, an antagonist of transient receptor potential melastatin 8 (TRPM8). Both mechanical and cold hypersensitivity were completely prevented by co-injection with the Nav 1.8 antagonist A803467, whereas the transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) antagonist A967079 only prevented hypersensitivity to innocuous cooling and partially prevented hypersensitivity to noxious cooling. In naive rats, neither innocuous nor noxious cold-evoked neuronal responses were inhibited by antagonists of Nav 1.8, TRPA1 or TRPM8 alone. Ciguatoxins may confer cold sensitivity to a subpopulation of cold-insensitive Nav 1.8/TRPA1-positive primary afferents, which could underlie the cold allodynia reported in ciguatera. These data expand the understanding of central spinal cold sensitivity under normal conditions and the role of these ion channels in this translational rat model of ciguatoxin-induced hypersensitivity. PMID:26454262

  16. The neuronal noradrenaline transporter, anxiety and cardiovascular disease.

    PubMed

    Esler, Murray; Alvarenga, Marlies; Pier, Ciaran; Richards, Jeff; El-Osta, Assam; Barton, David; Haikerwal, Deepak; Kaye, David; Schlaich, Markus; Guo, Ling; Jennings, Garry; Socratous, Flora; Lambert, Gavin

    2006-07-01

    Panic disorder can serve as a clinical model for testing whether mental stress can cause heart disease. Potential neural mechanisms of cardiac risk are the sympathetic activation during panic attacks, continuing release of adrenaline as a co-transmitter in the cardiac sympathetic nerves, and impairment of noradrenaline neuronal reuptake, augmenting sympathetic neural respnses. The phenotype of impaired neuronal reuptake of noradrenaline: an epigenetic mechanism? We suspect that this phenotype, in sensitizing people to heart symptom development, is a cause of panic disorder, and by magnifying the sympathetic neural signal in the heart, underlies increased cardiac risk. No loss of function mutations of the coding region of the norepinephrine transporter (NET) are evident, but we do detect hypermethylation of CpG islands in the NET gene promoter region. Chromatin immunoprecipitation methodology demonstrates binding of the inhibitory transcription factor, MeCP2, to promoter region DNA in panic disorder patients. Cardiovascular illnesses co-morbid with panic disorder. Panic disorder commonly coexists with essential hypertension and the postural tachycardia syndrome. In both of these cardiovascular disorders the impaired neuronal noradrenaline reuptake phenotype is also present and, as with panic disorder, is associated with NET gene promoter region DNA hypermethylation. An epigenetic 'co-morbidity' perhaps underlies the clinical concordance. Brain neurotransmitters. Using internal jugular venous sampling, in the absence of a panic attack we find normal norepinephrine turnover, but based on measurements of the overflow of the serotonin metabolite, 5HIAA, a marked increase (six to sevenfold) in brain serotonin turnover in patients with panic disorder. This appears to represent the underlying neurotransmitter substrate for the disorder. Whether this brain serotonergic activation is a prime mover, or consequential on other primary causes of panic disorder, including cardiac

  17. Cloning of three novel neuronal Cdk5 activator binding proteins.

    PubMed

    Ching, Y P; Qi, Z; Wang, J H

    2000-01-25

    Neuronal Cdc2-like kinase (Nclk) is involved in the regulation of neuronal differentiation and neuro-cytoskeleton dynamics. The active kinase consists of a catalytic subunit, Cdk5, and a 25 kDa activator protein (p25nck5a) derived from a 35 kDa neuronal-specific protein (p35nck5a). As an extension of our previous study (Qi, Z., Tang, D., Zhu, X., Fujita, D.J., Wang, J.H., 1998. Association of neurofilament proteins with neuronal Cdk5 activator. J. Biol. Chem. 270, 2329-2335), which showed that neurofilament is one of the p35nck5a-associated proteins, we now report the isolation of three other novel p35nck5a-associated proteins using the yeast two-hybrid screen. The full-length forms of these three novel proteins, designated C42, C48 and C53, have a molecular mass of 66, 24, and 57 kDa, respectively. Northern analysis indicates that these novel proteins are widely expressed in human tissues, including the heart, brain, skeletal muscle, placenta, lung, liver, kidney and pancreas. The bacterially expressed glutathione S-transferase (GST)-fusion forms of these three proteins were able to co-precipitate p35nck5a complexed with Cdk5 from insect cell lysate. Among these three proteins, only C48 and C53 can be phosphorylated by Nclk, suggesting that they may be the substrates of Nclk. Sequence homology searches have suggested that the C48 protein is marginally related to restin protein, whereas the C42 protein has homologues of unknown function in Caenorhabditis elegans and Arabidopsis thaliana. PMID:10721722

  18. Neuronal gap junctions play a role in the secondary neuronal death following controlled cortical impact.

    PubMed

    Belousov, Andrei B; Wang, Yongfu; Song, Ji-Hoon; Denisova, Janna V; Berman, Nancy E; Fontes, Joseph D

    2012-08-22

    In the mammalian CNS, excessive release of glutamate and overactivation of glutamate receptors are responsible for the secondary (delayed) neuronal death following neuronal injury, including ischemia, traumatic brain injury (TBI) and epilepsy. Recent studies in mice showed a critical role for neuronal gap junctions in NMDA receptor-mediated excitotoxicity and ischemia-mediated neuronal death. Here, using controlled cortical impact (CCI) in adult mice, as a model of TBI, and Fluoro-Jade B staining for analysis of neuronal death, we set to determine whether neuronal gap junctions play a role in the CCI-mediated secondary neuronal death. We report that 24h post-CCI, substantial neuronal death is detected in a number of brain regions outside the injury core, including the striatum. The striatal neuronal death is reduced both in wild-type mice by systemic administration of mefloquine (a relatively selective blocker of neuronal gap junctions) and in knockout mice lacking connexin 36 (neuronal gap junction protein). It is also reduced by inactivation of group II metabotropic glutamate receptors (with LY341495) which, as reported previously, control the rapid increase in neuronal gap junction coupling following different types of neuronal injury. The results suggest that neuronal gap junctions play a critical role in the CCI-induced secondary neuronal death. PMID:22781494

  19. Fuel cells: A survey

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crowe, B. J.

    1973-01-01

    A survey of fuel cell technology and applications is presented. The operating principles, performance capabilities, and limitations of fuel cells are discussed. Diagrams of fuel cell construction and operating characteristics are provided. Photographs of typical installations are included.

  20. Cation exchange capacity of pine bark substrates

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cation exchange capacity (CEC) is an important soil and substrate chemical property. It describes a substrate's ability to retain cation nutrients. Higher CEC values for a substrate generally result in greater amounts of nutrients retained in the substrate and available for plant uptake, and great...

  1. Semiconductor films on flexible iridium substrates

    DOEpatents

    Goyal, Amit

    2005-03-29

    A laminate semiconductor article includes a flexible substrate, an optional biaxially textured oxide buffer system on the flexible substrate, a biaxially textured Ir-based buffer layer on the substrate or the buffer system, and an epitaxial layer of a semiconductor. Ir can serve as a substrate with an epitaxial layer of a semiconductor thereon.

  2. Substrate for thin silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Ciszek, Theodore F.

    1998-01-01

    A substrate for a photovoltaic device wherein the substrate is the base upon which photosensitive material is to be grown and the substrate comprises an alloy having boron in a range from 0.1 atomic % of the alloy to 1.3 atomic % of the alloy and the substrate has a resistivity less than 3.times.10.sup.-3 ohm-cm.

  3. Carbonic anhydrase activity in primary sensory neurons. II. Influence of environmental factors on the phenotypic expression of the enzyme in dissociated cultures of chicken dorsal root ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Barakat, I; Kazimierczak, J; Droz, B

    1986-01-01

    Neuronal subpopulations of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) cells in the chicken exhibit carbonic anhydrase (CA) activity. To determine whether CA activity is expressed by DRG cells maintained in in vitro cultures, dissociated DRG cells from 10-day-old chick embryos were cultured on a collagen substrate. The influence exerted by environmental factors on the enzyme expression was tested under various conditions of culture. Neuron-enriched cell cultures and mixed DRG-cell cultures (including numerous non-neuronal cells) were performed either in a defined medium or in a horse serum-supplemented medium. In all the tested conditions, subpopulations of cultured sensory neurons expressed CA activity in their cell bodies, while their neurites were rarely stained; in each case, the percentage of CA-positive neurons declined with the age of the cultures. The number and the persistence of neurons possessing CA activity as well as the intensity of the reaction were enhanced by addition of horse serum. In contrast, the expression of the neuronal CA activity was not affected by the presence of non-neuronal cells or by the rise of CO2 concentration. Thus, the appearance and disappearance of neuronal subpopulations expressing CA activity may be decisively influenced by factors contained in the horse serum. The loss of CA-positive neurons with time could result from a cell selection or from genetic repression. Analysis of the time curves does not support a preferential cell death of CA-positive neurons but suggests that the eventual conversion of CA-positive neurons into CA-negative neurons results from a loss of the enzyme activity. These results indicate that the phenotypic expression of cultured sensory neurons is dependent on defined environmental factors.

  4. Manipulating neuronal activity with low frequency transcranial ultrasound

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Michele Elizabeth

    Stimulation of the rodent cerebral cortex is used to investigate the underlying biological basis for the restorative effects of slow wave sleep. Neuronal activation by optogenetic and ultrasound stimulation elicits changes in action potentials across the cerebral cortex that are recorded as electroencephalograms. Optogenetic stimulation requires an invasive implantation procedure limiting its application in human studies. We sought to determine whether ultrasound stimulation could be as effective as optogenetic techniques currently used, in an effort to further understand the physiological and metabolic requirements of sleep. We successfully recorded electroencephalograms in response to transcranial ultrasound stimulation of the barrel cortex at 1 and 7 Hz frequencies, comparing them to those recorded in response to optogenetic stimuli applied at the same frequencies. Our results showed application of a 473 nm blue LED positioned 6 cm above the skull and ultrasound stimulation at an output voltage of 1000 mVpp produced electroencephalograms with physiological responses of similar amplitude. We concluded that there exists an intensity-proportionate response in the optogenetic stimulation, but not with ultrasound stimulation at the frequencies we surveyed. Activation of neuronal cells in response to optogenetic stimulation in a Thy1-ChR2 transgenic mouse line is specifically targeted to pyramidal cells in the cerebral cortex. ChR2 responses to optogenetic stimulation are mediated by a focal activation of neuronal ion channels. We measured electrophysiological responses to ultrasound stimulation, comparing them to those recorded from optogenetic stimuli. Our results show striking similarities between ultrasound-induced responses and optogenetically-induced responses, which may indicate that transcranial ultrasound stimulation is also mediated by ion channel dependent processes in cerebral cortical neurons. The biophysical substrates for electrical excitability of

  5. Neuronal Cell Death Induced by Mechanical Percussion Trauma in Cultured Neurons is not Preceded by Alterations in Glucose, Lactate and Glutamine Metabolism.

    PubMed

    Jayakumar, A R; Bak, L K; Rama Rao, K V; Waagepetersen, H S; Schousboe, A; Norenberg, M D

    2016-02-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a devastating neurological disorder that usually presents in acute and chronic forms. Brain edema and associated increased intracranial pressure in the early phase following TBI are major consequences of acute trauma. On the other hand, neuronal injury, leading to neurobehavioral and cognitive impairments, that usually develop months to years after single or repetitive episodes of head trauma, are major consequences of chronic TBI. The molecular mechanisms responsible for TBI-induced injury, however, are unclear. Recent studies have suggested that early mitochondrial dysfunction and subsequent energy failure play a role in the pathogenesis of TBI. We therefore examined whether oxidative metabolism of (13)C-labeled glucose, lactate or glutamine is altered early following in vitro mechanical percussion-induced trauma (5 atm) to neurons (4-24 h), and whether such events contribute to the development of neuronal injury. Cell viability was assayed using the release of the cytoplasmic enzyme lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), together with fluorescence-based cell staining (calcein and ethidium homodimer-1 for live and dead cells, respectively). Trauma had no effect on the LDH release in neurons from 1 to 18 h. However, a significant increase in LDH release was detected at 24 h after trauma. Similar findings were identified when traumatized neurons were stained with fluorescent markers. Additionally (13)C-labeling of glutamate showed a small, but statistically significant decrease at 14 h after trauma. However, trauma had no effect on the cycling ratio of the TCA cycle at any time-period examined. These findings indicate that trauma does not cause a disturbance in oxidative metabolism of any of the substrates used for neurons. Accordingly, such metabolic disturbance does not appear to contribute to the neuronal death in the early stages following trauma. PMID:26729365

  6. Sensor Technologies on Flexible Substrates

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koehne, Jessica

    2016-01-01

    NASA Ames has developed sensor technologies on flexible substrates integrated into textiles for personalized environment monitoring and human performance evaluation. Current technologies include chemical sensing for gas leak and event monitoring and biological sensors for human health and performance monitoring. Targeted integration include next generation EVA suits and flexible habitats.

  7. Cellulosic Substrates and Challenges Ahead

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The cost of production of butanol (acetone-butanol-ethanol; or ABE) is determined by feedstock prices, fermentation, recovery, by-product credits and the waste water treatment. Along these lines, we have an intensive research program on the use of various agricultural substrates, fermentation strate...

  8. Flexible substrate for printed wiring

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Asakura, M.; Yabe, K.; Tanaka, H.; Soda, A.

    1982-01-01

    A very flexible substrate for printed wiring is disclosed which is composed of a blend of phenoxy resin-polyisocyanate-brominated epoxy resin in which the equivalent ration of the functional groups is hydroxyl grouped: isocyanate group: epoxy group = 1:0.2 to 2:0.5 to 3. The product has outstanding solder resistance and is applied to metal without using adhesives.

  9. Synthetic substrates for enzyme analysis

    DOEpatents

    Bissell, E.R.; Mitchell, A.R.; Pearson, K.W.; Smith, R.E.

    1983-06-14

    Synthetic substrates are provided which may be represented as A-D. The A moiety includes an amino acid, polypeptide, or derivative. The D moiety includes 7-amino coumarin derivatives having an electron withdrawing substituent group at the 3 position carbon or fused between the 3 and 4 position carbons. No Drawings

  10. Synthetic substrates for enzyme analysis

    DOEpatents

    Bissell, Eugene R.; Mitchell, Alexander R.; Pearson, Karen W.; Smith, Robert E.

    1983-01-01

    Synthetic substrates are provided which may be represented as A-D. The A moiety thereof includes an amino acid, polypeptide, or derivative thereof. The D moiety thereof includes 7-amino coumarin derivatives having an electron withdrawing substituent group at the 3 position carbon or fused between the 3 and 4 position carbons.

  11. Future aviation fuels overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reck, G. M.

    1980-01-01

    The outlook for aviation fuels through the turn of the century is briefly discussed and the general objectives of the NASA Lewis Alternative Aviation Fuels Research Project are outlined. The NASA program involves the evaluation of potential characteristics of future jet aircraft fuels, the determination of the effects of those fuels on engine and fuel system components, and the development of a component technology to use those fuels.

  12. Using light to probe neuronal function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daria, Vincent R.; Bachor, Hans-A.

    2015-08-01

    In the last few years a multi-disciplinary approach has been launched to investigate the brain using new techniques, which are capable of probing neuronal function across the entire length scales of the brain. Here, we discuss optical tools and spatial light patterning techniques to investigate brain function from the perspective of individual neurons and neuronal circuits. We discuss both biochemical and genetic tools to stimulate neurons, as well as techniques to record neuronal activity. We discuss optical projection and imaging tricks that can be dynamically customized to a particular neuron morphology and neuronal circuit layout facilitating a systematic study of their input/output transfer functions. These optical techniques will play a major role towards understanding the operation of a brain.

  13. Neurofilament assembly and function during neuronal development.

    PubMed

    Laser-Azogui, Adi; Kornreich, Micha; Malka-Gibor, Eti; Beck, Roy

    2015-02-01

    Studies on the assembly of neuronal intermediate filaments (IFs) date back to the early work of Alzheimer. Developing neurons express a series of IF proteins, sequentially, at distinct stages of mammalian cell differentiation. This correlates with altered morphologies during the neuronal development, including axon outgrowth, guidance and conductivity. Importantly, neuronal IFs that fail to properly assemble into a filamentous network are a hallmark of neurodegenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Alzheimer's, and Parkinson's disease. Traditional structural methodologies fail to fully describe neuronal IF assembly, interactions and resulting function due to IFs structural plasticity, particularly in their C-terminal domains. We review here current progress in the field of neuronal-specific IFs, a dominant component affecting the cytoskeletal structure and function of neurons.

  14. Effect of hydrocarbon fuel type on fuel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wong, E. L.; Bittker, D. A.

    1982-01-01

    A modified jet fuel thermal oxidation tester (JFTOT) procedure was used to evaluate deposit and sediment formation for four pure hydrocarbon fuels over the temperature range 150 to 450 C in 316-stainless-steel heater tubes. Fuel types were a normal alkane, an alkene, a naphthene, and an aromatic. Each fuel exhibited certain distinctive deposit and sediment formation characteristics. The effect of aluminum and 316-stainless-steel heater tube surfaces on deposit formation for the fuel n-decane over the same temperature range was investigated. Results showed that an aluminum surface had lower deposit formation rates at all temperatures investigated. By using a modified JFTOT procedure the thermal stability of four pure hydrocarbon fuels and two practical fuels (Jet A and home heating oil no. 2) was rated on the basis of their breakpoint temperatures. Results indicate that this method could be used to rate thermal stability for a series of fuels.

  15. Fuel economy of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahluwalia, Rajesh K.; Wang, X.; Rousseau, A.; Kumar, R.

    On the basis of on-road energy consumption, fuel economy (FE) of hydrogen fuel cell light-duty vehicles is projected to be 2.5-2.7 times the fuel economy of the conventional gasoline internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEV) on the same platforms. Even with a less efficient but higher power density 0.6 V per cell than the base case 0.7 V per cell at the rated power point, the hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are projected to offer essentially the same fuel economy multiplier. The key to obtaining high fuel economy as measured on standardized urban and highway drive schedules lies in maintaining high efficiency of the fuel cell (FC) system at low loads. To achieve this, besides a high performance fuel cell stack, low parasitic losses in the air management system (i.e., turndown and part load efficiencies of the compressor-expander module) are critical.

  16. Fuel processor for fuel cell power system

    DOEpatents

    Vanderborgh, Nicholas E.; Springer, Thomas E.; Huff, James R.

    1987-01-01

    A catalytic organic fuel processing apparatus, which can be used in a fuel cell power system, contains within a housing a catalyst chamber, a variable speed fan, and a combustion chamber. Vaporized organic fuel is circulated by the fan past the combustion chamber with which it is in indirect heat exchange relationship. The heated vaporized organic fuel enters a catalyst bed where it is converted into a desired product such as hydrogen needed to power the fuel cell. During periods of high demand, air is injected upstream of the combustion chamber and organic fuel injection means to burn with some of the organic fuel on the outside of the combustion chamber, and thus be in direct heat exchange relation with the organic fuel going into the catalyst bed.

  17. The tumor suppressor p53 guides GluA1 homeostasis through Nedd4-2 during chronic elevation of neuronal activity.

    PubMed

    Jewett, Kathryn A; Zhu, Jiuhe; Tsai, Nien-Pei

    2015-10-01

    Chronic activity perturbation in neurons can trigger homeostatic mechanisms to restore the baseline function. Although the importance and dysregulation of neuronal activity homeostasis has been implicated in neurological disorders such as epilepsy, the complete signaling by which chronic changes in neuronal activity initiate the homeostatic mechanisms is unclear. We report here that the tumor suppressor p53 and its signaling are involved in neuronal activity homeostasis. Upon chronic elevation of neuronal activity in primary cortical neuron cultures, the ubiquitin E3 ligase, murine double minute- 2 (Mdm2), is phosphorylated by the kinase Akt. Phosphorylated Mdm2 triggers the degradation of p53 and subsequent induction of a p53 target gene, neural precursor cell expressed developmentally down-regulated gene 4-like (Nedd4-2). Nedd4-2 encodes another ubiquitin E3 ligase. We identified glutamate receptor subunit 1 (GluA1), subunit of alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors as a novel substrate of Nedd4-2. The regulation of GluA1 level is known to be crucial for neuronal activity homeostasis. We confirmed that, by pharmacologically inhibiting Mdm2-mediated p53 degradation or genetically reducing Nedd4-2 in a mouse model, the GluA1 ubiquitination and down-regulation induced by chronically elevated neuronal activity are both attenuated. Our findings demonstrate the first direct function of p53 in neuronal homeostasis and elucidate a new mechanism by which cortical neurons respond to chronic activity perturbation.

  18. Observability of Neuronal Network Motifs

    PubMed Central

    Whalen, Andrew J.; Brennan, Sean N.; Sauer, Timothy D.; Schiff, Steven J.

    2014-01-01

    We quantify observability in small (3 node) neuronal networks as a function of 1) the connection topology and symmetry, 2) the measured nodes, and 3) the nodal dynamics (linear and nonlinear). We find that typical observability metrics for 3 neuron motifs range over several orders of magnitude, depending upon topology, and for motifs containing symmetry the network observability decreases when observing from particularly confounded nodes. Nonlinearities in the nodal equations generally decrease the average network observability and full network information becomes available only in limited regions of the system phase space. Our findings demonstrate that such networks are partially observable, and suggest their potential efficacy in reconstructing network dynamics from limited measurement data. How well such strategies can be used to reconstruct and control network dynamics in experimental settings is a subject for future experimental work. PMID:25909092

  19. Influence of Substrate on PFSA Thin-Film Morphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dudenas, Peter; Kusoglu, Ahmet; Venkatakrishnan, Singanallur; Hexemer, Alexander; Weber, Adam

    Perfluorosulfonic-acid (PFSA) ionomers are the most commonly used electrolyte for polymer-electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs) due to their high conductivity and good electrochemical and thermo-mechanical stability. A PFSA's chemical structure is comprised of a polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) backbone that provides mechanical and chemical stability, and randomly placed tethered perfluoroether side chains terminated with sulfonic-acid groups, which impart its remarkable proton-conduction capabilities. Controlled by substrate/film interactions, long-range structural order in PFSAs change when confined to thin films (<200 nm), as does its transport and mechanical properties. The nature of change is substrate dependent, where stronger interactions create a more dramatic change in properties. In this talk, grazing-incidence c-Ray scattering (GIXS) is used to demonstrate induced structural order on metallic substrates, which is not present on other substrates like silicon and carbon. The higher degree of ordering is correlated with measured changes in mechanical properties for the thin films. Scattering data is also modeled using the recently released program high-performance GISAXS (HipGISAXS), to estimate the size and distribution of the ordered domains. -/a

  20. Amyloid β-Protein as a Substrate Interacts with Extracellular Matrix to Promote Neurite Outgrowth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koo, Edward H.; Park, Lisa; Selkoe, Dennis J.

    1993-05-01

    Progressive deposition of amyloid β-protein (Aβ) in brain parenchyma and blood vessels is a characteristic feature of Alzheimer disease. Recent evidence suggests that addition of solubilized synthetic Aβ to medium may produce toxic or trophic effects on cultured hippocampal neurons. Because soluble Aβ may not accumulate in significant quantities in brain, we asked whether immobilized Aβ peptide as a substrate alters neurite outgrowth from cultured rat peripheral sensory neurons. This paradigm may closely mimic the conditions in Alzheimer disease brain tissue, in which neurites contact insoluble, extracellular aggregates of β-amyloid. We detected no detrimental effects of Aβ substrate on neurite outgrowth. Rather, Aβ in combination with low doses of laminin or fibronectin enhanced neurite out-growth from these neuronal explants. Our results suggest that insoluble Aβ in the cerebral neuropil may serve as a neurite-promoting matrix, perhaps explaining the apparent regenerative response of neurites observed around amyloid plaques in Alzheimer disease. Moreover, in concert with the recent discovery of Aβ production by cultured neurons, our data suggest that Aβ plays a normal physiological role in brain by complexing with the extracellular matrix.