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Current Opinion in Neurobiology

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https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27930937/advances-in-myelinating-glial-cell-development
#1
REVIEW
Amy L Herbert, Kelly R Monk
In the vertebrate nervous system, the fast conduction of action potentials is potentiated by the myelin sheath, a multi-lamellar, lipid-rich structure that also provides vital trophic and metabolic support to axons. Myelin is elaborated by the plasma membrane of specialized glial cells, oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system (CNS) and Schwann cells (SCs) in the peripheral nervous system (PNS). The diseases that result from damage to myelin or glia, including multiple sclerosis and Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, underscore the importance of these cells for human health...
December 5, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27918886/computational-principles-and-models-of-multisensory-integration
#2
REVIEW
Chandramouli Chandrasekaran
Combining information from multiple senses creates robust percepts, speeds up responses, enhances learning, and improves detection, discrimination, and recognition. In this review, I discuss computational models and principles that provide insight into how this process of multisensory integration occurs at the behavioral and neural level. My initial focus is on drift-diffusion and Bayesian models that can predict behavior in multisensory contexts. I then highlight how recent neurophysiological and perturbation experiments provide evidence for a distributed redundant network for multisensory integration...
December 2, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27915086/metabolism-and-neurogenesis
#3
REVIEW
Marlen Knobloch, Sebastian Jessberger
The generation of neurons in the developing and adult mammalian brain by neural stem/progenitor cells (NSPCs) depends on a tight control of NSPC activity and neuronal differentiation that is regulated by a plethora of intrinsic and extrinsic molecular cues. Besides well-studied morphogenic signaling pathways and transcriptional codes that govern the distinct developmental steps from the dividing NSPC to a functional neuron, a critical role of cellular metabolism to determine the functional properties of NSPCs and newborn neurons has been recently identified...
December 1, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27912138/human-specific-genomic-signatures-of-neocortical-expansion
#4
REVIEW
Marta Florio, Víctor Borrell, Wieland B Huttner
Neocortex evolutionary expansion is primarily due to increased proliferative capacity of neural progenitor cells during cortical development. Exploiting insights into the cell biology of cortical progenitors gained during the past two decades, recent studies uncovered a variety of gene expression differences that underlie differential cortical progenitor behavior. These comprise both, differences between cortical areas that likely provide a molecular basis for cortical folding, and differences across species thought to be responsible for increases in neocortex size...
November 29, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27907815/master-or-servant-emerging-roles-for-motor-neuron-subtypes-in-the-construction-and-evolution-of-locomotor-circuits
#5
REVIEW
Jeremy S Dasen
Execution of motor behaviors relies on the ability of circuits within the nervous system to engage functionally relevant subtypes of spinal motor neurons. While much attention has been given to the role of networks of spinal interneurons on setting the rhythm and pattern of output from locomotor circuits, recent studies suggest that motor neurons themselves can exert an instructive role in shaping the wiring and functional properties of locomotor networks. Alteration in the distribution of motor neuron subtypes also appears to have contributed to evolutionary transitions in the locomotor strategies used by land vertebrates...
November 28, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27889625/cortical-interneuron-specification-the-juncture-of-genes-time-and-geometry
#6
REVIEW
Rachel C Bandler, Christian Mayer, Gord Fishell
A fundamental question in developmental neuroscience is how hundreds of diverse cell types are generated to form specialized brain regions. The ganglionic eminences (GEs) are embryonic brain structures located in the ventral telencephalon that produce many inhibitory GABA (γ-Aminobutyric acid)-ergic cell types, including long-range projection neurons and local interneurons (INs), which disperse widely throughout the brain. While much has been discovered about the origin and wiring of these cells, a major question remains: how do neurons originating in the GEs become specified during development as one differentiated subtype versus another? This review will cover recent work that has advanced our knowledge of the mechanisms governing cortical interneuron subtype specification, particularly progenitors' spatial origin, birthdates, lineage, and mode of division...
November 24, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27888678/cerebral-cortical-neuron-diversity-and-development-at-single-cell-resolution
#7
REVIEW
Matthew B Johnson, Christopher A Walsh
Over a century of efforts to categorize the astonishing diversity of cortical neurons has relied on criteria of morphology, electrophysiology, ontology, and the expression of a few transcripts and proteins. The rapid development of single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) adds genome-wide gene expression patterns to this list of criteria, and promises to reveal new insights into the transitions that establish neuronal identity during development, differentiation, activity, and disease. Comparing single neuron data to reference atlases constructed from hundreds of thousands of single-cell transcriptomes will be critical to understanding these transitions and the molecular mechanisms that drive them...
November 23, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27837663/microrna-function-in-drosophila-memory-formation
#8
REVIEW
Germain U Busto, Tugba Guven-Ozkan, Ronald L Davis
MicroRNAs (miRs) are small non-coding RNAs that regulate protein expression through post-transcriptional mechanisms. They participate in broad aspects of biology from the control of developmental processes to tumorigenesis. Recent studies in Drosophila show that they also regulate activity-dependent and sensory-specific protein expression and support olfactory memory formation. Among the hundreds of miRs described, several have been demonstrated to be required for normal learning, memory, or for the development of neuronal circuits that support memory formation...
November 9, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27810767/editorial-overview-microcircuit-evolution-and-computation-2016
#9
EDITORIAL
Thomas R Clandinin, Eve Marder
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 31, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27788368/the-interplay-between-neurons-and-glia-in-synapse-development-and-plasticity
#10
REVIEW
Jeff A Stogsdill, Cagla Eroglu
In the brain, the formation of complex neuronal networks amenable to experience-dependent remodeling is complicated by the diversity of neurons and synapse types. The establishment of a functional brain depends not only on neurons, but also non-neuronal glial cells. Glia are in continuous bi-directional communication with neurons to direct the formation and refinement of synaptic connectivity. This article reviews important findings, which uncovered cellular and molecular aspects of the neuron-glia cross-talk that govern the formation and remodeling of synapses and circuits...
October 24, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27750206/is-there-anybody-out-there-neural-circuits-of-threat-detection-in-vertebrates
#11
Ana G Pereira, Marta A Moita
Avoiding or escaping a predator is arguably one of the most important functions of a prey's brain, hence of most animals' brains. Studies on fear conditioning have greatly advanced our understanding of the circuits that regulate learned defensive behaviours. However, animals possess a multitude of threat detection mechanisms, from hardwired circuits that ensure innate responses to predator cues, to the use of social information. Surprisingly, only more recently have these circuits captured the attention of a wider range of researchers working on different species and behavioural paradigms...
October 14, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27736649/cortical-circuits-and-modules-in-movement-generation-experiments-and-theories
#12
Tamar Flash, Emilio Bizzi
Here we review recent studies of the cortical circuits subserving the control of posture and movement. This topic is addressed from neurophysiological and evolutionary perspectives describing recent advancements achieved through experimental studies in humans and non-human primates. We also describe current debates and controversies concerning motor mapping within the motor cortex and the different computational approaches aimed at resolving the mystery around motor representations and computations. In recent years there is growing interest in the possibly modular organization of motor representations and dynamical processes and the potential of such studies to provide new clues into motor information processing...
October 10, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27721084/homeostatic-plasticity-of-excitability-in-crustacean-central-pattern-generator-networks
#13
David J Schulz, Brian J Lane
Plasticity of excitability can come in two general forms: changes in excitability that alter neuronal output (e.g. long-term potentiation of intrinsic excitability) or excitability changes that stabilize neuronal output (homeostatic plasticity). Here we discuss the latter form of plasticity in the context of the crustacean stomatogastric nervous system, and a second central pattern generator circuit, the cardiac ganglion. We discuss this plasticity at three levels: rapid homeostatic changes in membrane conductance, longer-term effects of neuromodulation on excitability, and the impacts of activity-dependent feedback on steady-state channel mRNA levels...
October 6, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27721083/regulation-of-motoneuron-excitability-and-the-setting-of-homeostatic-limits
#14
Carlo Ng Giachello, Richard A Baines
Stability of neural circuits is reliant on homeostatic mechanisms that return neuron activity towards pre-determined and physiologically appropriate levels. Without these mechanisms, changes due to synaptic plasticity, ageing and disease may push neural circuits towards instability. Whilst widely documented, understanding of how and when neurons determine an appropriate activity level, the so-called set-point, remains unknown. Genetically tractable model systems have greatly contributed to our understanding of neuronal homeostasis and continue to offer attractive models to explore these additional questions...
October 6, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27716577/neurobiology-and-biomechanics-of-flight-in-miniature-insects
#15
Sanjay P Sane
Miniature insects can be as small as a few hundred micrometres in size, making them among the smallest metazoan animals ever described. Yet, even at these length scales, they display remarkably sophisticated flight behaviours. For flight at such low Reynolds numbers, miniature insects have evolved biomechanical and neural adaptations that push the boundaries of what is possible in the realm of physics and neurobiology of flight. After several decades of relative dormancy, this question has recently been revisited by researchers working in diverse areas ranging from systematics and neurobiology to dispersal behaviours...
October 4, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27710794/comparative-approaches-to-escape
#16
Martin Y Peek, Gwyneth M Card
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...
October 3, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27664945/neuronal-energy-consumption-biophysics-efficiency-and-evolution
#17
Jeremy E Niven
Electrical and chemical signaling within and between neurons consumes energy. Recent studies have sought to refine our understanding of the processes that consume energy and their relationship to information processing by coupling experiments with computational models and energy budgets. These studies have produced insights into both how neurons and neural circuits function, and why they evolved to function in the way they do.
September 21, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27662056/target-detection-in-insects-optical-neural-and-behavioral-optimizations
#18
Paloma T Gonzalez-Bellido, Samuel T Fabian, Karin Nordström
Motion vision provides important cues for many tasks. Flying insects, for example, may pursue small, fast moving targets for mating or feeding purposes, even when these are detected against self-generated optic flow. Since insects are small, with size-constrained eyes and brains, they have evolved to optimize their optical, neural and behavioral target visualization solutions. Indeed, even if evolutionarily distant insects display different pursuit strategies, target neuron physiology is strikingly similar...
September 20, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27662055/visual-motion-processing-subserving-behavior-in-crabs
#19
Daniel Tomsic
Motion vision originated during the Cambrian explosion more than 500 million years ago, likely triggered by the race for earliest detection between preys and predators. To successfully evade a predator's attack a prey must react quickly and reliably, which imposes a common constrain to the implementation of escape responses among different species. Thus, neural circuits subserving fast escape responses are usually straightforward and contain giant neurons. This review summarizes knowledge about a small group of motion-sensitive giant neurons thought to be central in guiding the escape performance of crabs to visual stimuli...
September 20, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27657982/molecules-empowering-animals-to-sense-and-respond-to-temperature-in-changing-environments
#20
Dominique A Glauser, Miriam B Goodman
Adapting behavior to thermal cues is essential for animal growth and survival. Indeed, each and every biological and biochemical process is profoundly affected by temperature and its extremes can cause irreversible damage. Hence, animals have developed thermotransduction mechanisms to detect and encode thermal information in the nervous system and acclimation mechanisms to finely tune their response over different timescales. While temperature-gated TRP channels are the best described class of temperature sensors, recent studies highlight many new candidates, including ionotropic and metabotropic receptors...
September 19, 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
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