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25 Publications

Showing 1-10 of 25 results
09/23/19 | Single-cell reconstruction of emerging population activity in an entire developing circuit.
Wan Y, Wei Z, Looger LL, Koyama M, Druckmann S, Keller PJ
Cell. 2019 Sep 23;179(2):. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2019.08.039

Animal survival requires a functioning nervous system to develop during embryogenesis. Newborn neurons must assemble into circuits producing activity patterns capable of instructing behaviors. Elucidating how this process is coordinated requires new methods that follow maturation and activity of all cells across a developing circuit. We present an imaging method for comprehensively tracking neuron lineages, movements, molecular identities, and activity in the entire developing zebrafish spinal cord, from neurogenesis until the emergence of patterned activity instructing the earliest spontaneous motor behavior. We found that motoneurons are active first and form local patterned ensembles with neighboring neurons. These ensembles merge, synchronize globally after reaching a threshold size, and finally recruit commissural interneurons to orchestrate the left-right alternating patterns important for locomotion in vertebrates. Individual neurons undergo functional maturation stereotypically based on their birth time and anatomical origin. Our study provides a general strategy for reconstructing how functioning circuits emerge during embryogenesis.

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07/29/19 | Kilohertz frame-rate two-photon tomography.
Kazemipour A, Novak O, Flickinger D, Marvin JS, Abdelfattah AS, King J, Borden P, Kim J, Al-Abdullatif S, Deal P, Miller E, Schreiter E, Druckmann S, Svoboda K, Looger L, Podgorski K
Nature Methods. 2019 Jul 29;16(8):778-86. doi: 10.1101/357269

Point-scanning two-photon microscopy enables high-resolution imaging within scattering specimens such as the mammalian brain, but sequential acquisition of voxels fundamentally limits imaging speed. We developed a two-photon imaging technique that scans lines of excitation across a focal plane at multiple angles and uses prior information to recover high-resolution images at over 1.4 billion voxels per second. Using a structural image as a prior for recording neural activity, we imaged visually-evoked and spontaneous glutamate release across hundreds of dendritic spines in mice at depths over 250 microns and frame-rates over 1 kHz. Dendritic glutamate transients in anaesthetized mice are synchronized within spatially-contiguous domains spanning tens of microns at frequencies ranging from 1-100 Hz. We demonstrate high-speed recording of acetylcholine and calcium sensors, 3D single-particle tracking, and imaging in densely-labeled cortex. Our method surpasses limits on the speed of raster-scanned imaging imposed by fluorescence lifetime.

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01/15/19 | An orderly single-trial organization of population dynamics in premotor cortex predicts behavioral variability.
Wei Z, Inagaki H, Li N, Svoboda K, Druckmann S
Nature Communications. 2019 Jan 15;10(1):216. doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-08141-6

Animals are not simple input-output machines. Their responses to even very similar stimuli are variable. A key, long-standing question in neuroscience is to understand the neural correlates of such behavioral variability. To reveal these correlates, behavior and neural population activity must be related to one another on single trials. Such analysis is challenging due to the dynamical nature of brain function (e.g., in decision making), heterogeneity across neurons and limited sampling of the relevant neural population. By analyzing population recordings from mouse frontal cortex in perceptual decision-making tasks, we show that an analysis approach tailored to the coarse grain features of the dynamics is able to reveal previously unrecognized structure in the organization of population activity. This structure is similar on error and correct trials, suggesting dynamics that may be constrained by the underlying circuitry, is able to predict multiple aspects of behavioral variability and reveals long time-scale modulation of population activity.

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Druckmann LabMagee Lab
10/22/18 | Active dendritic integration and mixed neocortical network representations during an adaptive sensing behavior.
Ranganathan GN, Apostolides PF, Harnett MT, Xu N, Druckmann S, Magee JC
Nature Neuroscience. 2018 Oct 22;21(11):1583-90. doi: 10.1038/s41593-018-0254-6

Animals strategically scan the environment to form an accurate perception of their surroundings. Here we investigated the neuronal representations that mediate this behavior. Ca imaging and selective optogenetic manipulation during an active sensing task reveals that layer 5 pyramidal neurons in the vibrissae cortex produce a diverse and distributed representation that is required for mice to adapt their whisking motor strategy to changing sensory cues. The optogenetic perturbation degraded single-neuron selectivity and network population encoding through a selective inhibition of active dendritic integration. Together the data indicate that active dendritic integration in pyramidal neurons produces a nonlinearly mixed network representation of joint sensorimotor parameters that is used to transform sensory information into motor commands during adaptive behavior. The prevalence of the layer 5 cortical circuit motif suggests that this is a general circuit computation.

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Druckmann Lab
05/04/18 | Schaffer collateral inputs to CA1 excitatory and inhibitory neurons follow different connectivity rules.
Kwon O, Feng L, Druckmann S, Kim J
The Journal of Neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience. 2018 May 04;38(22):5140-52. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0155-18.2018

Neural circuits, governed by a complex interplay between excitatory and inhibitory neurons, are the substrate for information processing, and the organization of synaptic connectivity in neural network is an important determinant of circuit function. Here, we analyzed the fine structure of connectivity in hippocampal CA1 excitatory and inhibitory neurons innervated by Schaffer collaterals (SCs) using mGRASP in male mice. Our previous study revealed spatially structured synaptic connectivity between CA3-CA1 pyramidal cells (PCs). Surprisingly, parvalbumin-positive interneurons (PVs) showed a significantly more random pattern spatial structure. Notably, application of Peters' Rule for synapse prediction by random overlap between axons and dendrites enhanced structured connectivity in PCs, but, by contrast, made the connectivity pattern in PVs more random. In addition, PCs in a deep sublayer of striatum pyramidale appeared more highly structured than PCs in superficial layers, and little or no sublayer specificity was found in PVs. Our results show that CA1 excitatory PCs and inhibitory PVs innervated by the same SC inputs follow different connectivity rules. The different organizations of fine scale structured connectivity in hippocampal excitatory and inhibitory neurons provide important insights into the development and functions of neural networks.Understanding how neural circuits generate behavior is one of the central goals of neuroscience. An important component of this endeavor is the mapping of fine-scale connection patterns that underlie, and help us infer, signal processing in the brain. Here, using our recently developed synapse detection technology (mGRASP and neuTube), we provide detailed profiles of synaptic connectivity in excitatory (CA1 pyramidal) and inhibitory (CA1 parvalbumin-positive) neurons innervated by the same presynaptic inputs (CA3 Schaffer collaterals). Our results reveal that these two types of CA1 neurons follow different connectivity patterns. Our new evidence for differently structured connectivity at a fine scale in hippocampal excitatory and inhibitory neurons provides a better understanding of hippocampal networks and will guide theoretical and experimental studies.

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Druckmann LabPodgorski Lab
04/16/18 | Multiplicative updates for optimization problems with dynamics.
Abbas Kazemipour , Behtash Babadi , wu m, Podgorski K, Shaul Druckmann
IEEE Xplore. 2018 Apr 16:. doi: 10.1109/ACSSC.2017.8335723

We consider the problem of optimizing general convex objective functions with nonnegativity constraints. Using the Karush-Kuhn-Tucker (KKT) conditions for the nonnegativity constraints we will derive fast multiplicative update rules for several problems of interest in signal processing, including non-negative deconvolution, point-process smoothing, ML estimation for Poisson Observations, nonnegative least squares and nonnegative matrix factorization (NMF). Our algorithm can also account for temporal and spatial structure and regularization. We will analyze the performance of our algorithm on simultaneously recorded neuronal calcium imaging and electrophysiology data.

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04/25/18 | Low-dimensional and monotonic preparatory activity in mouse anterior lateral motor cortex.
Inagaki HK, Inagaki M, Romani S, Svoboda K
The Journal of Neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience. 2018 Apr 25;38(17):4163-85. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3152-17.2018

Neurons in multiple brain regions fire trains of action potentials anticipating specific movements, but this 'preparatory activity' has not been systematically compared across behavioral tasks. We compared preparatory activity in auditory and tactile delayed-response tasks in male mice. Skilled, directional licking was the motor output. The anterior lateral motor cortex (ALM) is necessary for motor planning in both tasks. Multiple features of ALM preparatory activity during the delay epoch were similar across tasks. First, majority of neurons showed direction-selective activity and spatially intermingled neurons were selective for either movement direction. Second, many cells showed mixed coding of sensory stimulus and licking direction, with a bias toward licking direction. Third, delay activity was monotonic and low-dimensional. Fourth, pairs of neurons with similar direction selectivity showed high spike-count correlations. Our study forms the foundation to analyze the neural circuit mechanisms underlying preparatory activity in a genetically tractable model organism.Short-term memories link events separated in time. Neurons in frontal cortex fire trains of action potentials anticipating specific movements, often seconds before the movement. This 'preparatory activity' has been observed in multiple brain regions, but has rarely been compared systematically across behavioral tasks in the same brain region. To identify common features of preparatory activity, we developed and compared preparatory activity in auditory and tactile delayed-response tasks in mice. The same cortical area is necessary for both tasks. Multiple features of preparatory activity, measured with high-density silicon probes, were similar across tasks. We find that preparatory activity is low-dimensional and monotonic. Our study forms the foundation to analyze the circuit mechanisms underlying preparatory activity in a genetically tractable model organism.

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05/22/17 | Angular velocity integration in a fly heading circuit.
Turner-Evans D, Wegener S, Rouault H, Franconville R, Wolff T, Seelig JD, Druckmann S, Jayaraman V
eLife. 2017 May 22;6:. doi: 10.7554/eLife.23496

Many animals maintain an internal representation of their heading as they move through their surroundings. Such a compass representation was recently discovered in a neural population in the Drosophila melanogaster central complex, a brain region implicated in spatial navigation. Here, we use two-photon calcium imaging and electrophysiology in head-fixed walking flies to identify a different neural population that conjunctively encodes heading and angular velocity, and is excited selectively by turns in either the clockwise or counterclockwise direction. We show how these mirror-symmetric turn responses combine with the neurons' connectivity to the compass neurons to create an elegant mechanism for updating the fly's heading representation when the animal turns in darkness. This mechanism, which employs recurrent loops with an angular shift, bears a resemblance to those proposed in theoretical models for rodent head direction cells. Our results provide a striking example of structure matching function for a broadly relevant computation.

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05/04/17 | Ring attractor dynamics in the Drosophila central brain.
Kim SS, Rouault H, Druckmann S, Jayaraman V
Science (New York, N.Y.). 2017 May 04;356(6340):849-53. doi: 10.1126/science.aal4835

Ring attractors are a class of recurrent networks hypothesized to underlie the representation of heading direction. Such network structures, schematized as a ring of neurons whose connectivity depends on their heading preferences, can sustain a bump-like activity pattern whose location can be updated by continuous shifts along either turn direction. We recently reported that a population of fly neurons represents the animal's heading via bump-like activity dynamics. We combined two-photon calcium imaging in head-fixed flying flies with optogenetics to overwrite the existing population representation with an artificial one, which was then maintained by the circuit with naturalistic dynamics. A network with local excitation and global inhibition enforces this unique and persistent heading representation. Ring attractor networks have long been invoked in theoretical work; our study provides physiological evidence of their existence and functional architecture.

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Druckmann LabSvoboda Lab
05/03/17 | Maintenance of persistent activity in a frontal thalamocortical loop.
Guo ZV, Inagaki HK, Daie K, Druckmann S, Gerfen CR, Svoboda K
Nature. 2017 May 03;545(7653):181-6. doi: 10.1038/nature22324

Persistent neural activity maintains information that connects past and future events. Models of persistent activity often invoke reverberations within local cortical circuits, but long-range circuits could also contribute. Neurons in the mouse anterior lateral motor cortex (ALM) have been shown to have selective persistent activity that instructs future actions. The ALM is connected bidirectionally with parts of the thalamus, including the ventral medial and ventral anterior-lateral nuclei. We recorded spikes from the ALM and thalamus during tactile discrimination with a delayed directional response. Here we show that, similar to ALM neurons, thalamic neurons exhibited selective persistent delay activity that predicted movement direction. Unilateral photoinhibition of delay activity in the ALM or thalamus produced contralesional neglect. Photoinhibition of the thalamus caused a short-latency and near-complete collapse of ALM activity. Similarly, photoinhibition of the ALM diminished thalamic activity. Our results show that the thalamus is a circuit hub in motor preparation and suggest that persistent activity requires reciprocal excitation across multiple brain areas.

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