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1495 Janelia Publications

Showing 21-30 of 1495 results
01/15/19 | Characterization of neurite dystrophy after trauma by high speed structured illumination microscopy and lattice light sheet microscopy.
Phillips JK, Sherman SA, Cotton KY, Heddleston JM, Taylor AB, Finan JD
Journal of Neuroscience Methods. 2019 Jan 15;312:154-61. doi: 10.1016/j.jneumeth.2018.12.005

BACKGROUND: Unbiased screening studies have repeatedly identified actin-related proteins as one of the families of proteins most influenced by neurotrauma. Nevertheless, the status quo model of cytoskeletal reorganization after neurotrauma excludes actin and incorporates only changes in microtubules and intermediate filaments. Actin is excluded in part because it is difficult to image with conventional techniques. However, recent innovations in fluorescent microscopy provide an opportunity to image the actin cytoskeleton at super-resolution resolution in living cells. This study applied these innovations to an in vitro model of neurotrauma.

NEW METHOD: New methods are introduced for traumatizing neurons before imaging them with high speed structured illumination microscopy or lattice light sheet microscopy. Also, methods for analyzing structured illumination microscopy images to quantify post-traumatic neurite dystrophy are presented.

RESULTS: Human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons exhibited actin organization typical of immature neurons. Neurite dystrophy increased after trauma but was not influenced by jasplakinolide treatment. The F-actin content of dystrophies varied greatly from one dystrophy to another.

COMPARISON WITH EXISTING METHODS: In contrast to fixation dependent methods, these methods capture the evolution of the actin cytoskeleton over time in a living cell. In contrast to prior methods based on counting dystrophies, this quantification scheme parameterizes the severity of a given dystrophy as it evolves from a local swelling to an almost-perfect spheroid that threatens to transect the neurite.

CONCLUSIONS: These methods can be used to investigate genetic factors and therapeutic interventions that modulate the course of neurite dystrophy after trauma.

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01/15/19 | Developmentally arrested precursors of pontine neurons establish an embryonic blueprint of the Drosophila central complex.
Andrade IV, Riebli N, Nguyen BM, Omoto JJ, Cardona A, Hartenstein V
Current Biology : CB. 2019 Jan 15;29(3):412-25. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2018.12.012

Serial electron microscopic analysis shows that the Drosophila brain at hatching possesses a large fraction of developmentally arrested neurons with a small soma, heterochromatin-rich nucleus, and unbranched axon lacking synapses. We digitally reconstructed all 802 "small undifferentiated" (SU) neurons and assigned them to the known brain lineages. By establishing the coordinates and reconstructing trajectories of the SU neuron tracts, we provide a framework of landmarks for the ongoing analyses of the L1 brain circuitry. To address the later fate of SU neurons, we focused on the 54 SU neurons belonging to the DM1-DM4 lineages, which generate all columnar neurons of the central complex. Regarding their topologically ordered projection pattern, these neurons form an embryonic nucleus of the fan-shaped body ("FB pioneers"). Fan-shaped body pioneers survive into the adult stage, where they develop into a specific class of bi-columnar elements, the pontine neurons. Later born, unicolumnar DM1-DM4 neurons fasciculate with the fan-shaped body pioneers. Selective ablation of the fan-shaped body pioneers altered the architecture of the larval fan-shaped body primordium but did not result in gross abnormalities of the trajectories of unicolumnar neurons, indicating that axonal pathfinding of the two systems may be controlled independently. Our comprehensive spatial and developmental analysis of the SU neurons adds to our understanding of the establishment of neuronal circuitry.

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01/10/19 | Cryo-EM of retinoschisin branched networks suggests an intercellular adhesive scaffold in the retina.
Heymann JB, Vijayasarathy C, Huang RK, Dearborn AD, Sieving PA, Steven AC
The Journal of Cell Biology. 2019 Jan 10:. doi: 10.1083/jcb.201806148

Mutations in the retinal protein retinoschisin (RS1) cause progressive loss of vision in young males, a form of macular degeneration called X-linked retinoschisis (XLRS). We previously solved the structure of RS1, a 16-mer composed of paired back-to-back octameric rings. Here, we show by cryo-electron microscopy that RS1 16-mers can assemble into extensive branched networks. We classified the different configurations, finding four types of interaction between the RS1 molecules. The predominant configuration is a linear strand with a wavy appearance. Three less frequent types constitute the branch points of the network. In all cases, the "spikes" around the periphery of the double rings are involved in these interactions. In the linear strand, a loop (usually referred to as spike 1) occurs on both sides of the interface between neighboring molecules. Mutations in this loop suppress secretion, indicating the possibility of intracellular higher-order assembly. These observations suggest that branched networks of RS1 may play a stabilizing role in maintaining the integrity of the retina.

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01/03/19 | High-throughput synapse-resolving two-photon fluorescence microendoscopy for deep-brain volumetric imaging .
Meng G, Liang Y, Sarsfield S, Jiang W, Lu R, Dudman JT, Aponte Y, Ji N
eLife. 2019 Jan 03;8:. doi: 10.7554/eLife.40805

Optical imaging has become a powerful tool for studying brains . The opacity of adult brains makes microendoscopy, with an optical probe such as a gradient index (GRIN) lens embedded into brain tissue to provide optical relay, the method of choice for imaging neurons and neural activity in deeply buried brain structures. Incorporating a Bessel focus scanning module into two-photon fluorescence microendoscopy, we extended the excitation focus axially and improved its lateral resolution. Scanning the Bessel focus in 2D, we imaged volumes of neurons at high-throughput while resolving fine structures such as synaptic terminals. We applied this approach to the volumetric anatomical imaging of dendritic spines and axonal boutons in the mouse hippocampus, and functional imaging of GABAergic neurons in the mouse lateral hypothalamus .

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01/09/19 | Comparisons between the ON- and OFF-edge motion pathways in the brain.
Shinomiya K, Huang G, Lu Z, Parag T, Xu CS, Aniceto R, Ansari N, Cheatham N, Lauchie S, Neace E, Ogundeyi O, Ordish C, Peel D, Shinomiya A, Smith C, Takemura S, Talebi I, Rivlin PK, Nern A, Scheffer LK, Plaza SM, Meinertzhagen IA
eLife. 2019 Jan 09;8:. doi: 10.7554/eLife.40025

Understanding the circuit mechanisms behind motion detection is a long-standing question in visual neuroscience. In , recent synapse-level connectomes in the optic lobe, particularly in ON-pathway (T4) receptive-field circuits, in concert with physiological studies, suggest an increasingly intricate motion model compared with the ubiquitous Hassenstein-Reichardt model, while our knowledge of OFF-pathway (T5) has been incomplete. Here we present a conclusive and comprehensive connectome that for the first time integrates detailed connectivity information for inputs to both T4 and T5 pathways in a single EM dataset covering the entire optic lobe. With novel reconstruction methods using automated synapse prediction suited to such a large connectome, we successfully corroborate previous findings in the T4 pathway and comprehensively identify inputs and receptive fields for T5. While the two pathways are likely evolutionarily linked and indeed exhibit many similarities, we uncover interesting differences and interactions that may underlie their distinct functional properties.

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01/09/19 | Molecular logic of spinocerebellar tract neuron diversity and connectivity.
Baek M, Menon V, Jessell TM, Hantman AW, Dasen J
bioRxiv. 2019 Jan 09:. doi: 10.1101/516435

Coordinated motor behaviors depend on feedback communication between peripheral sensory systems and central circuits in the brain and spinal cord. Relay of muscle and tendon-derived sensory information to the CNS is facilitated by functionally and anatomically diverse groups of spinocerebellar tract neurons (SCTNs), but the molecular logic by which SCTN diversity and connectivity is achieved is poorly understood. We used single cell RNA sequencing and genetic manipulations to define the mechanisms governing the molecular profile and organization of SCTN subtypes. We found that SCTNs relaying proprioceptive sensory information from limb and axial muscles are generated through segmentally-restricted actions of specific Hox genes. Loss of Hox function disrupts SCTN subtype-specific transcriptional programs, leading to defects in the connections between proprioceptive sensory neurons, SCTNs, and the cerebellum. These results indicate that Hox-dependent genetic programs play essential roles in the assembly of the neural circuits required for proprioception.

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01/09/19 | Nuclear transcriptomes of the seven neuronal cell types that constitute the mushroom bodies.
Shih MM, Davis FP, Henry GL, Dubnau J
G3 (Bethesda, Md.). 2019 Jan 09;9(1):81-94. doi: 10.1534/g3.118.200726

The insect mushroom body (MB) is a conserved brain structure that plays key roles in a diverse array of behaviors. The MB is the primary invertebrate model of neural circuits related to memory formation and storage, and its development, morphology, wiring, and function has been extensively studied. MBs consist of intrinsic Kenyon Cells that are divided into three major neuron classes (γ, α'/β' and α/β) and 7 cell subtypes (γd, γm, α'/β'ap, α'/β'm, α/βp, α/βs and α/βc) based on their birth order, morphology, and connectivity. These subtypes play distinct roles in memory processing, however the underlying transcriptional differences are unknown. Here, we used RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) to profile the nuclear transcriptomes of each MB neuronal cell subtypes. We identified 350 MB class- or subtype-specific genes, including the widely used α/β class marker and the α'/β' class marker Immunostaining corroborates the RNA-seq measurements at the protein level for several cases. Importantly, our data provide a full accounting of the neurotransmitter receptors, transporters, neurotransmitter biosynthetic enzymes, neuropeptides, and neuropeptide receptors expressed within each of these cell types. This high-quality, cell type-level transcriptome catalog for the MB provides a valuable resource for the fly neuroscience community.

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01/07/19 | Threshold-based ordering of sequential actions during Drosophila courtship.
McKellar CE, Lillvis JL, Bath DE, Fitzgerald JE, Cannon JG, Simpson JH, Dickson BJ
Current Biology : CB. 2019 Jan 07;29(3):426-34. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2018.12.019

Goal-directed animal behaviors are typically composed of sequences of motor actions whose order and timing are critical for a successful outcome. Although numerous theoretical models for sequential action generation have been proposed, few have been supported by the identification of control neurons sufficient to elicit a sequence. Here, we identify a pair of descending neurons that coordinate a stereotyped sequence of engagement actions during Drosophila melanogaster male courtship behavior. These actions are initiated sequentially but persist cumulatively, a feature not explained by existing models of sequential behaviors. We find evidence consistent with a ramp-to-threshold mechanism, in which increasing neuronal activity elicits each action independently at successively higher activity thresholds.

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Gonen Lab
12/26/18 | MicroED structures of HIV-1 Gag CTD-SP1 reveal binding interactions with the maturation inhibitor bevirimat.
Purdy MD, Shi D, Chrustowicz J, Hattne J, Gonen T, Yeager M
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2018 Dec 26;115(52):13258-63. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1806806115

HIV-1 protease (PR) cleavage of the Gag polyprotein triggers the assembly of mature, infectious particles. Final cleavage of Gag occurs at the junction helix between the capsid protein CA and the SP1 spacer peptide. Here we used MicroED to delineate the binding interactions of the maturation inhibitor bevirimat (BVM) using very thin frozen-hydrated, 3D microcrystals of a CTD-SP1 Gag construct with and without bound BVM. The 2.9-Å MicroED structure revealed that a single BVM molecule stabilizes the six-helix bundle via both electrostatic interactions with the dimethylsuccinyl moiety and hydrophobic interactions with the pentacyclic triterpenoid ring. These results provide insight into the mechanism of action of BVM and related maturation inhibitors that will inform further drug discovery efforts. This study also demonstrates the capabilities of MicroED for structure-based drug design.

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