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190 Publications

Showing 131-140 of 190 results
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    04/01/11 | N-WASp is required for Schwann cell cytoskeletal dynamics, normal myelin gene expression and peripheral nerve myelination.
    Jin F, Dong B, Georgiou J, Jiang Q, Zhang J, Bharioke A, Qiu F, Lommel S, Feltri ML, Wrabetz L, Roder JC, Eyer J, Chen X, Peterson AC, Siminovitch KA
    Development. 2011 Apr;138(7):1329-37. doi: 10.1242/dev.058677

    Schwann cells elaborate myelin sheaths around axons by spirally wrapping and compacting their plasma membranes. Although actin remodeling plays a crucial role in this process, the effectors that modulate the Schwann cell cytoskeleton are poorly defined. Here, we show that the actin cytoskeletal regulator, neural Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (N-WASp), is upregulated in myelinating Schwann cells coincident with myelin elaboration. When N-WASp is conditionally deleted in Schwann cells at the onset of myelination, the cells continue to ensheath axons but fail to extend processes circumferentially to elaborate myelin. Myelin-related gene expression is also severely reduced in the N-WASp-deficient cells and in vitro process and lamellipodia formation are disrupted. Although affected mice demonstrate obvious motor deficits these do not appear to progress, the mutant animals achieving normal body weights and living to advanced age. Our observations demonstrate that N-WASp plays an essential role in Schwann cell maturation and myelin formation.

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    04/01/11 | Near-atomic resolution reconstructions of icosahedral viruses from electron cryo-microscopy.
    Grigorieff N, Harrison SC
    Current Opinion in Structural Biology. 2011 Apr;21(2):265-73. doi: 10.1016/

    Nine different near-atomic resolution structures of icosahedral viruses, determined by electron cryo-microscopy and published between early 2008 and late 2010, fulfil predictions made 15 years ago that single-particle cryo-EM techniques could visualize molecular detail at 3-4A resolution. This review summarizes technical developments, both in instrumentation and in computation, that have led to the new structures, which advance our understanding of virus assembly and cell entry.

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    04/01/11 | Wireless neural/EMG telemetry systems for small freely moving animals.
    Harrison RR, Fotowat H, Chan R, Kier RJ, Olberg R, Leonardo A, Gabbiani F
    IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Circuits and Systems. 2011 Apr;5(2):103-11. doi: 10.1109/TBCAS.2011.2131140

    We have developed miniature telemetry systems that capture neural, EMG, and acceleration signals from a freely moving insect or other small animal and transmit the data wirelessly to a remote digital receiver. The systems are based on custom low-power integrated circuits (ICs) that amplify, filter, and digitize four biopotential signals using low-noise circuits. One of the chips also digitizes three acceleration signals from an off-chip microelectromechanical-system accelerometer. All information is transmitted over a wireless ~ 900-MHz telemetry link. The first unit, using a custom chip fabricated in a 0.6- μm BiCMOS process, weighs 0.79 g and runs for two hours on two small batteries. We have used this system to monitor neural and EMG signals in jumping and flying locusts as well as transdermal potentials in weakly swimming electric fish. The second unit, using a custom chip fabricated in a 0.35-μ m complementary metal-oxide semiconductor CMOS process, weighs 0.17 g and runs for five hours on a single 1.5-V battery. This system has been used to monitor neural potentials in untethered perching dragonflies.

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    03/30/11 | Automated high speed stitching of large 3D microscopic images.
    Yu Y, Peng H
    2011 8TH IEEE International Symposium on Biomedical Imaging: From Nano to Macro. 2011 Mar 30:238-41. doi: 10.1109/isbi.2011.5872396

    High-resolution microscopic imaging of biological samples often produces multiple 3D image tiles to cover a large field of view of specimen. Usually each tile has a large size, in the range of hundreds of megabytes to several gigabytes. For many of our image data sets, existing software tools are often unable to stitch those 3D tiles into a panoramic view, thus impede further data analysis. We propose a simple, but accurate, robust, and automatic method to stitch a group of image tiles without a priori adjacency information of them. We first use a multiscale strategy to register a pair of 3D image tiles rapidly, achieving about 8~10 times faster speed and 10 times less memory requirement compared to previous methods. Then we design a minimum-spanning-tree based method to determine the optimal adjacency of tiles. We have successfully stitched large image stacks of model animals including C. elegans, fruit fly, dragonfly, and mouse, which could not be stitched by several existing methods.

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    Fetter Lab
    03/24/11 | Hts/Adducin controls synaptic elaboration and elimination.
    Pielage J, Bulat V, Zuchero JB, Fetter RD, Davis GW
    Neuron. 2011 Mar 24;69(6):1114-31. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2011.02.007

    Neural development requires both synapse elaboration and elimination, yet relatively little is known about how these opposing activities are coordinated. Here, we provide evidence Hts/Adducin can serve this function. We show that Drosophila Hts/Adducin is enriched both pre- and postsynaptically at the NMJ. We then demonstrate that presynaptic Hts/Adducin is necessary and sufficient to control two opposing processes associated with synapse remodeling: (1) synapse stabilization as determined by light level and ultrastructural and electrophysiological assays and (2) the elaboration of actin-based, filopodia-like protrusions that drive synaptogenesis and growth. Synapse remodeling is sensitive to Hts/Adducin levels, and we provide evidence that the synaptic localization of Hts/Adducin is controlled via phosphorylation. Mechanistically, Drosophila Hts/Adducin protein has actin-capping activity. We propose that phosphorylation-dependent regulation of Hts/Adducin controls the level, localization, and activity of Hts/Adducin, influencing actin-based synapse elaboration and spectrin-based synapse stabilization. Hts/Adducin may define a mechanism to switch between synapse stability and dynamics.

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    03/22/11 | Dynamics of endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT) machinery during cytokinesis and its role in abscission.
    Elia N, Sougrat R, Spurlin TA, Hurley JH, Lippincott-Schwartz J
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2011 Mar 22;108(12):4846-51. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1102714108

    The final stage of cytokinesis is abscission, the cutting of the narrow membrane bridge connecting two daughter cells. The endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT) machinery is required for cytokinesis, and ESCRT-III has membrane scission activity in vitro, but the role of ESCRTs in abscission has been undefined. Here, we use structured illumination microscopy and time-lapse imaging to dissect the behavior of ESCRTs during abscission. Our data reveal that the ESCRT-I subunit tumor-susceptibility gene 101 (TSG101) and the ESCRT-III subunit charged multivesicular body protein 4b (CHMP4B) are sequentially recruited to the center of the intercellular bridge, forming a series of cortical rings. Late in cytokinesis, however, CHMP4B is acutely recruited to the narrow constriction site where abscission occurs. The ESCRT disassembly factor vacuolar protein sorting 4 (VPS4) follows CHMP4B to this site, and cell separation occurs immediately. That arrival of ESCRT-III and VPS4 correlates both spatially and temporally with the abscission event suggests a direct role for these proteins in cytokinetic membrane abscission.

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    03/15/11 | Compartmentalized Notch signaling sustains epithelial mirror symmetry
    Wibowo I, Pinto-Teixeira F, Satou C, Higashijima S, López-Schier H
    Development. 03/2011;138:1143-1152. doi: 10.1242/dev.060566

    Bilateral symmetric tissues must interpret axial references to maintain their global architecture during growth or repair. The regeneration of hair cells in the zebrafish lateral line, for example, forms a vertical midline that bisects the neuromast epithelium into perfect mirror-symmetric plane-polarized halves. Each half contains hair cells of identical planar orientation but opposite to that of the confronting half. The establishment of bilateral symmetry in this organ is poorly understood. Here, we show that hair-cell regeneration is strongly directional along an axis perpendicular to that of epithelial planar polarity. We demonstrate compartmentalized Notch signaling in neuromasts, and show that directional regeneration depends on the development of hair-cell progenitors in polar compartments that have low Notch activity. High-resolution live cell tracking reveals a novel process of planar cell inversions whereby sibling hair cells invert positions immediately after progenitor cytokinesis, demonstrating that oriented progenitor divisions are dispensable for bilateral symmetry. Notwithstanding the invariably directional regeneration, the planar polarization of the epithelium eventually propagates symmetrically because mature hair cells move away from the midline towards the periphery of the neuromast. We conclude that a strongly anisotropic regeneration process that relies on the dynamic stabilization of progenitor identity in permissive polar compartments sustains bilateral symmetry in the lateral line.

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    Cui Lab
    03/15/11 | Parallel wavefront optimization method for focusing light through random scattering media.
    Cui M
    Optics Letters. 2011 Mar 15;36(6):870-2. doi: 10.1364/OL.36.000870

    A parallel wavefront optimization method is demonstrated experimentally to focus light through random scattering media. The simultaneous modulation of multiple phase elements, each at a unique frequency, enables a parallel determination of the optimal wavefront. Compared to a pixel-by-pixel measurement, the reported parallel method uses the target signal in a highly efficient way. With 441 phase elements, a high-quality focus was formed through a glass diffuser with a peak-to-background ratio of \~{}270. The accuracy and repeatability of the system were tested through experiments.

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    03/15/11 | Subnuclear segregation of genes and core promoter factors in myogenesis. (With commentary)
    Yao J, Fetter RD, Hu P, Betzig E, Tjian R
    Genes & Development. 2011 Mar 15;25(6):569-80. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1100640108

    Recent findings implicate alternate core promoter recognition complexes in regulating cellular differentiation. Here we report a spatial segregation of the alternative core factor TAF3, but not canonical TFIID subunits, away from the nuclear periphery, where the key myogenic gene MyoD is preferentially localized in myoblasts. This segregation is correlated with the differential occupancy of TAF3 versus TFIID at the MyoD promoter. Loss of this segregation by modulating either the intranuclear location of the MyoD gene or TAF3 protein leads to altered TAF3 occupancy at the MyoD promoter. Intriguingly, in differentiated myotubes, the MyoD gene is repositioned to the nuclear interior, where TAF3 resides. The specific high-affinity recognition of H3K4Me3 by the TAF3 PHD (plant homeodomain) finger appears to be required for the sequestration of TAF3 to the nuclear interior. We suggest that intranuclear sequestration of core transcription components and their target genes provides an additional mechanism for promoter selectivity during differentiation.

    Commentary: Jie Yao in Bob Tijan’s lab used a combination of confocal microscopy and dual label PALM in thin sections cut from resin-embedded cells to show that certain core transcription components and their target genes are spatially segregated in myoblasts, but not in differentiated myotubes, suggesting that such spatial segregation may play a role in guiding cellular differentiation.


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    Bock Lab
    03/10/11 | Network anatomy and in vivo physiology of visual cortical neurons.
    Bock DD, Lee WA, Kerlin AM, Andermann ML, Hood G, Wetzel AW, Yurgenson S, Soucy ER, Kim HS, Reid RC
    Nature. 2011 Mar 10;471(7337):177-82. doi: 10.1038/nature09802

    In the cerebral cortex, local circuits consist of tens of thousands of neurons, each of which makes thousands of synaptic connections. Perhaps the biggest impediment to understanding these networks is that we have no wiring diagrams of their interconnections. Even if we had a partial or complete wiring diagram, however, understanding the network would also require information about each neuron’s function. Here we show that the relationship between structure and function can be studied in the cortex with a combination of in vivo physiology and network anatomy. We used two-photon calcium imaging to characterize a functional property–the preferred stimulus orientation–of a group of neurons in the mouse primary visual cortex. Large-scale electron microscopy of serial thin sections was then used to trace a portion of these neurons’ local network. Consistent with a prediction from recent physiological experiments, inhibitory interneurons received convergent anatomical input from nearby excitatory neurons with a broad range of preferred orientations, although weak biases could not be rejected.

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