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Journal of Neurogenetics

Atsushi Ueda, Tim Patience, Chun-Fang Wu
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
November 29, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Taixiang Saur, I-Feng Peng, Peng Jiang, Neng Gong, Wei-Dong Yao, Tian-Le Xu, Chun-Fang Wu
Intrinsic electric activities of neurons play important roles in establishing and refining neural circuits during development. However, how the underlying ionic currents undergo postembryonic reorganizations remains largely unknown. Using acutely dissociated neurons from larval, pupal, and adult Drosophila brains, we show drastic re-assemblies and compensatory regulations of voltage-gated (IKv) and Ca(2+)-activated (IK(Ca)) K(+ )currents during postembryonic development. Larval and adult neurons displayed prominent fast-inactivating IKv, mediated by the Shaker (Sh) channel to a large extent, while in the same neurons IK(Ca) was far smaller in amplitude...
November 21, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Kate M O'Connor-Giles, Bing Zhang, Julie H Simpson, Chun-Fang Wu
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
November 21, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Alex M Willenbrink, Margo K Gronauer, Leon F Toebben, Daniel R Kick, Madalyn Wells, Bing Zhang
Climbing or negative geotaxis is an innate behavior of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. There has been considerable interest in using this simple behavior to gain insights into the changes in brain function associated with aging, influence of drugs, mutated genes, and human neurological disorders. At present, most climbing tests are conducted manually and there is a lack of a simple and automatic device for repeatable and quantitative analysis of fly climbing behavior. Here we present an automatic fly climbing system, named the Hillary Climber (after Sir Edmund Hillary), that can replace the human manual tapping of vials with a mechanical tapping mechanism to provide more consistent force and reduce variability between the users and trials...
November 21, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Keri J Fogle, J Ian Hertzler, Joy H Shon, Michael J Palladino
Effective therapies are lacking for mitochondrial encephalomyopathies (MEs). MEs are devastating diseases that predominantly affect the energy-demanding tissues of the nervous system and muscle, causing symptoms such as seizures, cardiomyopathy, and neuro- and muscular degeneration. Even common anti-epileptic drugs which are frequently successful in ameliorating seizures in other diseases tend to have a lower success rate in ME, highlighting the need for novel drug targets, especially those that may couple metabolic sensitivity to neuronal excitability...
November 21, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
J H Simpson
The ability to image and manipulate specific cell populations in Drosophila enables the investigation of how neural circuits develop and coordinate appropriate motor behaviors. Gal4 lines give genetic access to many types of neurons, but the expression patterns of these reagents are often complex. Here, we present the generation and expression patterns of LexA lines based on the vesicular neurotransmitter transporters and Hox transcription factors. Intersections between these LexA lines and existing Gal4 collections provide a strategy for rationally subdividing complex expression patterns based on neurotransmitter or segmental identity...
November 15, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Maaike Labots, Xiaochu Zheng, Golnaz Moattari, Frauke Ohl, Hein A van Lith
Substrains of the C57BL/6 inbred mouse are widely used in genetic, behavioral and physiological research, as well as models for human disease. Throughout, the choice of the respective substrain can have a large influence on experimental results. Likewise, the conditions under which experiments are performed, such as the light regime, can significantly affect the outcome of an experiment, especially when aiming at experimental behavior. Here, two commonly used mouse substrains, C57BL/6JOlaHsd and C57BL/6NCrl, were housed under either a conventional or a reverse light regime and were tested in either the light phase or the dark phase, respectively...
November 15, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Alfredo Ghezzi, Marie Zomeno, Andrzej Z Pietrzykowski, Nigel S Atkinson
At the core of the changes characteristic of alcoholism are alterations in gene expression in the brain of the addicted individual. These changes are believed to underlie some of the neuroadaptations that promote compulsive drinking. Unfortunately, the mechanisms by which alcohol consumption produces changes in gene expression remain poorly understood. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have emerged as important regulators of gene expression because they can coordinately modulate the translation efficiency of large sets of specific mRNAs...
November 15, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Alberto Ferrús
Pleasant memories rejuvenate and this letter is written to that purpose. Although dedicated to Barry Ganetzky, I hope it will please also those that shared their times with us in the lab of Seymour Benzer. For those too young to have so distant memories, I hope this text will teach them the same lessons we learnt then.
November 10, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Richard H Ffrench-Constant, Martin S Williamson, T G Emyr Davies, Chris Bass
Ion channels remain the primary target of most of the small molecule insecticides. This review examines how the subunit composition of heterologously expressed receptors determines their insecticide-specific pharmacology and how the pharmacology of expressed receptors differs from those found in the insect nervous system. We find that the insecticide-specific pharmacology of some receptors, like that containing subunits of the Rdl encoded GABA receptor, can be reconstituted with very few of the naturally occurring subunits expressed...
November 2, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Li-Lian Yuan, Eric Wauson, Vanja Duric
Kinase-mediated signaling cascades regulate a number of different molecular mechanisms involved in cellular homeostasis, and are viewed as one of the most common intracellular processes that are robustly dysregulated in the pathophysiology of mood disorders such as depression. Newly emerged, rapid acting antidepressants are able to achieve therapeutic improvement, possibly in part, through stimulating activity of kinase-dependent signaling pathways. Thus, advancements in our understanding of how kinases may contribute to development and treatment of depression seem crucial...
October 27, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Wenzao Li, Peng Zhou, Congmin Zhao, Yuping Zhang
Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), a multisystem genetic syndrome, often affects the central nervous system. The age of onset of TSC ranges from 0 to 15 years. The clinical features manifest as a combination of seizures, mental retardation, facial angiofibroma, renal angiomyolipoma, and cardiac rhabdomyoma. Most cases of TSC are caused by mutations of the TSC1 or TSC2 genes. We characterized a Chinese patient with a novel de novo mutation in the TSC2 gene associated with the TSC detected by next-generation sequencing...
October 25, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Kirsten E Zeuner, Albert Acewicz, Arne Knutzen, Dirk Dressler, Katja Lohmann, Karsten Witt
Writers' cramp is a movement disorder with dystonic co-contraction of fingers and hand during writing and is part of the clinical spectrum of focal dystonias. Previous studies showed reduced striatal dopamine receptor D2 (DRD2) availability in dystonia. The expression of D2 receptors is modulated by a DRD2/ANKK1-Taq1A polymorphism (rs1800497). This study addresses the question of whether the DRD2/ANKK1-Taq1A polymorphism is a risk factor for writer's cramp. We determined the DRD2/ANKK1-Taq1A polymorphism 34 patients with writer's cramp compared to 67 age matched controls...
October 4, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Taixiang Saur, Bruce M Cohen, Qi Ma, Suzann M Babb, Edgar A Buttner, Wei-Dong Yao
Cholinergic dysfunction contributes to cognitive deficits in schizophrenia. The atypical antipsychotic clozapine improves cognition in patients with schizophrenia, possibly through modulation of the cholinergic system. However, little is known about specific underlying mechanisms. We investigated the acute and chronic effects of clozapine on cholinergic synaptic transmission in cultured superior cervical ganglion (SCG) neurons. Spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) were detected and were reversibly inhibited by the nicotinic receptor antagonist d-tubocurarine, confirming that the synaptic responses were primarily mediated by nicotinic receptors...
September 14, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Nigel S Atkinson
This is a brief reminiscence of my time in the Ganetzky lab from 1986-1990 and its effect on my scientific trajectory.
September 1, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
(no author information available yet)
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
June 28, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Mine Elagoz Yuksel, Betul Yuceturk, Omer Faruk Karatas, Mustafa Ozen, Burak Dogangun
Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are one of the life long existing disorders. Abnormal methylation status of gene promoters of oxytonergic system has been implicated as among the etiologic factors of ASDs. We, therefore, investigated the methylation frequency of oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) promoter from peripheral blood samples of children with autistic features. Our sample includes 66 children in total (22-94 months); 27 children with ASDs according to the DSM-IV-TR and the Childhood Autism Rating Scale and 39 children who don't have any autistic like symptoms as the healthy control group...
June 16, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Nozomi Koseki, Satoshi Mori, Shoki Suzuki, Yuta Tonooka, Sakiko Kosugi, Hiroyoshi Miyakawa, Takako Morimoto
Animals make decisions on behavioral choice by evaluating internal and external signals. Individuals often make decisions in different ways, but the underlying neural mechanisms are not well understood. Here we describe a system for observing the behavior of individual Drosophila melanogaster larvae simultaneously presented with contradictory signals, in this case attractive (yeast paste) and aversive (NaCl) signals. Olfaction was used to detect the yeast paste, whereas the ENaC/Pickpocket channel was important for NaCl detection...
June 16, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Kurt R Weiss, J Troy Littleton
Polyglutamine expansion within Huntingtin (Htt) causes the fatal neurodegenerative disorder Huntington's Disease (HD). Although Htt is ubiquitously expressed and conserved from Drosophila to humans, its normal biological function is still being elucidated. Here we characterize a role for the Drosophila Htt homolog (dHtt) in fast axonal transport (FAT). Generation and expression of transgenic dHtt-mRFP and human Htt-mRFP fusion proteins in Drosophila revealed co-localization with mitochondria and synaptic vesicles undergoing FAT...
June 16, 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
Kristin M Scaplen, Karla R Kaun
In a complex environment, animals learn from their responses to stimuli and events. Appropriate response to reward and punishment can promote survival, reproduction and increase evolutionary fitness. Interestingly, the neural processes underlying these responses are remarkably similar across phyla. In all species, dopamine is central to encoding reward and directing motivated behaviors, however, a comprehensive understanding of how circuits encode reward and direct motivated behaviors is still lacking. In part, this is a result of the sheer diversity of neurons, the heterogeneity of their responses and the complexity of neural circuits within which they are found...
June 2016: Journal of Neurogenetics
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