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1042 Janelia Publications

Showing 1-10 of 1042 results
12/18/16 | Canonical genetic signatures of the adult human brain.
Hawrylycz M, Miller JA, Menon V, Feng D, Dolbeare T, Guillozet-Bongaarts AL, Jegga AG, Aronow BJ, Lee C, Bernard A, Glasser MF, Dierker DL, Menche J, Szafer A, Collman F, Grange P, Berman KA, Mihalas S, Yao Z, Stewart L, Barabási A, Schulkin J, Phillips J, Ng L, Dang C, Haynor DR, Jones A, Van Essen DC, Koch C, Lein E
Nature neuroscience. 2015 Dec;18(12):1832-44. doi: 10.1038/nn.4171

The structure and function of the human brain are highly stereotyped, implying a conserved molecular program responsible for its development, cellular structure and function. We applied a correlation-based metric called differential stability to assess reproducibility of gene expression patterning across 132 structures in six individual brains, revealing mesoscale genetic organization. The genes with the highest differential stability are highly biologically relevant, with enrichment for brain-related annotations, disease associations, drug targets and literature citations. Using genes with high differential stability, we identified 32 anatomically diverse and reproducible gene expression signatures, which represent distinct cell types, intracellular components and/or associations with neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorders. Genes in neuron-associated compared to non-neuronal networks showed higher preservation between human and mouse; however, many diversely patterned genes displayed marked shifts in regulation between species. Finally, highly consistent transcriptional architecture in neocortex is correlated with resting state functional connectivity, suggesting a link between conserved gene expression and functionally relevant circuitry.

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10/10/16 | Live-cell single-molecule tracking reveals co-recognition of H3K27me3 and DNA targets polycomb Cbx7-PRC1 to chromatin.
Zhen CYu, Tatavosian R, Huynh TNgoc, Duc HNguyen, Das R, Kokotovic M, Grimm JB, Lavis LD, Lee J, Mejia FJ, Li Y, Yao T, Ren X
eLife. 2016 Oct 10;5:. doi: 10.7554/eLife.17667

The Polycomb PRC1 plays essential roles in development and disease pathogenesis. Targeting of PRC1 to chromatin is thought to be mediated by the Cbx family proteins (Cbx2/4/6/7/8) binding to histone H3 with a K27me3 modification (H3K27me3). Despite this prevailing view, the molecular mechanisms of targeting remain poorly understood. Here, by combining live-cell single-molecule tracking (SMT) and genetic engineering, we reveal that H3K27me3 contributes significantly to the targeting of Cbx7 and Cbx8 to chromatin, but less to Cbx2, Cbx4, and Cbx6. Genetic disruption of the complex formation of PRC1 facilitates the targeting of Cbx7 to chromatin. Biochemical analyses uncover that the CD and AT-hook-like (ATL) motif of Cbx7 constitute a functional DNA-binding unit. Live-cell SMT of Cbx7 mutants demonstrates that Cbx7 is targeted to chromatin by co-recognizing of H3K27me3 and DNA. Our data suggest a novel hierarchical cooperation mechanism by which histone modifications and DNA coordinate to target chromatin regulatory complexes.

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10/07/16 | Light sheet microscopes: Novel imaging toolbox for visualizing life's processes.
Heddleston JM, Chew T
The International Journal of Biochemistry & Cell Biology. 2016 Oct 7:. doi: 10.1016/j.biocel.2016.10.002

Capturing dynamic processes in live samples is a nontrivial task in biological imaging. Although fluorescence provides high specificity and contrast compared to other light microscopy techniques, the photophysical principles of this method can have a harmful effect on the sample. Current advances in light sheet microscopy have created a novel imaging toolbox that allows for rapid acquisition of high-resolution fluorescent images with minimal perturbation of the processes of interest. Each unique design has its own advantages and limitations. In this review, we describe several cutting edge light sheet microscopes and their optimal applications.

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10/06/16 | A designer AAV variant permits efficient retrograde access to projection neurons.
Tervo DGowanlock, Hwang B, Viswanathan S, Gaj T, Lavzin M, Ritola KD, Lindo S, Michael S, Kuleshova E, Ojala D, Huang C, Gerfen CR, Schiller J, Dudman JT, Hantman AW, Looger LL, Schaffer DV, Karpova AY
Neuron. 2016 Oct 6:. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2016.09.021

Efficient retrograde access to projection neurons for the delivery of sensors and effectors constitutes an important and enabling capability for neural circuit dissection. Such an approach would also be useful for gene therapy, including the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders characterized by pathological spread through functionally connected and highly distributed networks. Viral vectors, in particular, are powerful gene delivery vehicles for the nervous system, but all available tools suffer from inefficient retrograde transport or limited clinical potential. To address this need, we applied in vivo directed evolution to engineer potent retrograde functionality into the capsid of adeno-associated virus (AAV), a vector that has shown promise in neuroscience research and the clinic. A newly evolved variant, rAAV2-retro, permits robust retrograde access to projection neurons with efficiency comparable to classical synthetic retrograde tracers and enables sufficient sensor/effector expression for functional circuit interrogation and in vivo genome editing in targeted neuronal populations. VIDEO ABSTRACT.

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10/06/16 | The Oscillating Stimulus Transporter Assay, OSTA: Quantitative functional imaging of transporter protein activity in time and frequency domains.
Keller JP, Looger LL
Molecular Cell. 2016 Oct 6;64(1):199-212. doi: 10.1016/j.molcel.2016.09.001

Transmembrane transporter proteins allow the passage of essentially all biologically important molecules across the lipid membranes of cells and organelles and are therefore of central importance to all forms of life. Current methods of transporter measurement, however, are lacking in several dimensions. Herein, a method is presented in which oscillating stimuli are presented to transporter-expressing cells, and activity is measured through imaging the corresponding oscillating responses of intracellular fluorescent sensors. This approach yields continuous temporal readouts of transporter activity and can therefore be used to measure time-dependent responses to drugs and other stimuli. Because of the periodic nature of the response, temporal Fourier transforms can be used to identify and quantify regions of interest in the xy plane and to overcome noise. This technique, called the Oscillating Stimulus Transporter Assay (OSTA), should greatly facilitate both functional characterization of transporters as well as high-throughput screening of drugs for transporters of particular pathophysiological interest.

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10/05/16 | Competitive disinhibition mediates behavioral choice and sequences in Drosophila.
Jovanic T, Schneider-Mizell CMartin, Shao M, Masson J, Denisov G, Fetter RDoty, Mensh BDaren, Truman JWilliam, Cardona A, Zlatic M
Cell. 2016 Oct 5:. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2016.09.009

Even a simple sensory stimulus can elicit distinct innate behaviors and sequences. During sensorimotor decisions, competitive interactions among neurons that promote distinct behaviors must ensure the selection and maintenance of one behavior, while suppressing others. The circuit implementation of these competitive interactions is still an open question. By combining comprehensive electron microscopy reconstruction of inhibitory interneuron networks, modeling, electrophysiology, and behavioral studies, we determined the circuit mechanisms that contribute to the Drosophila larval sensorimotor decision to startle, explore, or perform a sequence of the two in response to a mechanosensory stimulus. Together, these studies reveal that, early in sensory processing, (1) reciprocally connected feedforward inhibitory interneurons implement behavioral choice, (2) local feedback disinhibition provides positive feedback that consolidates and maintains the chosen behavior, and (3) lateral disinhibition promotes sequence transitions. The combination of these interconnected circuit motifs can implement both behavior selection and the serial organization of behaviors into a sequence.

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10/03/16 | Comparative approaches to escape.
Peek MY, Card GM
Current Opinion in Neurobiology. 2016 Oct 3;41:167-173. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2016.09.012

Neural circuits mediating visually evoked escape behaviors are promising systems in which to dissect the neural basis of behavior. Behavioral responses to predator-like looming stimuli, and their underlying neural computations, are remarkably similar across species. Recently, genetic tools have been applied in this classical paradigm, revealing novel non-cortical pathways that connect loom processing to defensive behaviors in mammals and demonstrating that loom encoding models from locusts also fit vertebrate neural responses. In both invertebrates and vertebrates, relative spike-timing in descending pathways is a mechanism for escape behavior choice. Current findings suggest that experimentally tractable systems, such as Drosophila, may be applicable models for sensorimotor processing and persistent states in higher organisms.

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Pastalkova Lab
09/28/16 | Synchronized excitability in a network enables generation of internal neuronal sequences.
Yingxue W, Roth Z, Pastalkova E
eLife. 2016 Sep 28;5:. doi: 10.7554/eLife.20697

Hippocampal place field sequences are supported by sensory cues and network internal mechanisms. In contrast, sharp-wave (SPW) sequences, theta sequences and episode-field sequences are internally generated. The relationship of these sequences to memory is unclear. SPW sequences have been shown to support learning and have been assumed to also support episodic memory. Conversely, we demonstrate these SPW sequences were present even after episodic memory in trained rats was impaired and after other internal sequences - episode-field and theta sequences - were eliminated. SPW sequences did not support memory despite continuing to 'replay' all task-related sequences - place-field and episode-field sequences. Sequence replay occurred selectively during a synchronous increase of population excitability -- SPWs. Similarly, theta sequences depended on the presence of repeated synchronized waves of excitability - theta oscillations. Thus, we suggest that either intermittent or rhythmic synchronized changes of excitability trigger sequential firing of neurons, which in turn supports learning and/or memory.

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09/26/16 | Flight of the dragonflies and damselflies.
Bomphrey RJ, Nakata T, Henningsson P, Lin H
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences. 2016 Sep 26;371(1704):. doi: 10.1098/rstb.2015.0389

This work is a synthesis of our current understanding of the mechanics, aerodynamics and visually mediated control of dragonfly and damselfly flight, with the addition of new experimental and computational data in several key areas. These are: the diversity of dragonfly wing morphologies, the aerodynamics of gliding flight, force generation in flapping flight, aerodynamic efficiency, comparative flight performance and pursuit strategies during predatory and territorial flights. New data are set in context by brief reviews covering anatomy at several scales, insect aerodynamics, neuromechanics and behaviour. We achieve a new perspective by means of a diverse range of techniques, including laser-line mapping of wing topographies, computational fluid dynamics simulations of finely detailed wing geometries, quantitative imaging using particle image velocimetry of on-wing and wake flow patterns, classical aerodynamic theory, photography in the field, infrared motion capture and multi-camera optical tracking of free flight trajectories in laboratory environments. Our comprehensive approach enables a novel synthesis of datasets and subfields that integrates many aspects of flight from the neurobiology of the compound eye, through the aeromechanical interface with the surrounding fluid, to flight performance under cruising and higher-energy behavioural modes.This article is part of the themed issue 'Moving in a moving medium: new perspectives on flight'.

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09/23/16 | A timecourse analysis of systemic and gonadal effects of temperature on sexual development of the red-eared slider turtle Trachemys scripta elegans.
Czerwinski M, Natarajan A, Barske L, Looger LL, Capel B
Developmental Biology. 2016 Sep 23:. doi: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2016.09.018

Temperature dependent sex determination (TSD) is the process by which the environmental temperature experienced during embryogenesis influences the sex of an organism, as in the red-eared slider turtle Trachemys scripta elegans. In accord with current paradigms of vertebrate sex determination, temperature is believed to exert its effects on sexual development in T. scripta entirely within the middle third of development, when the gonad is forming. However, whether temperature regulates the transcriptome in T. scripta early embryos in a manner that could influence secondary sex characteristics or establish a pro-male or pro-female environment has not been investigated. In addition, apart from a handful of candidate genes, very little is known about potential similarities between the expression cascade during TSD and the genetic cascade that drives mammalian sex determination. Here, we conducted an unbiased transcriptome-wide analysis of the effects of male- and female-promoting temperatures on the turtle embryo prior to gonad formation, and on the gonad during the temperature sensitive period. We found sexually dimorphic expression reflecting differences in steroidogenic enzymes and brain development prior to gonad formation. Within the gonad, we mapped a cascade of differential expression similar to the genetic cascade established in mammals. Using a Hidden Markov Model based clustering approach, we identified groups of genes that show heterochronic shifts between M. musculus and T. scripta. We propose a model in which multiple factors influenced by temperature accumulate during early gonadogenesis, and converge on the antagonistic regulation of aromatase to canalize sex determination near the end of the temperature sensitive window of development.

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