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Neural identity

Richard J McMurtrey
Biomaterials are becoming an essential tool in the study and application of stem cell research. Various types of biomaterials enable three-dimensional culture of stem cells, and, more recently, also enable high-resolution patterning and organization of multicellular architectures. Biomaterials also hold potential to provide many additional advantages over cell transplants alone in regenerative medicine. This article describes novel designs for functionalized biomaterial constructs that guide tissue development to targeted regional identities and structures...
January 2016: Journal of Tissue Engineering
Matthew T Kaufman, Jeffrey S Seely, David Sussillo, Stephen I Ryu, Krishna V Shenoy, Mark M Churchland
Neural activity in monkey motor cortex (M1) and dorsal premotor cortex (PMd) can reflect a chosen movement well before that movement begins. The pattern of neural activity then changes profoundly just before movement onset. We considered the prediction, derived from formal considerations, that the transition from preparation to movement might be accompanied by a large overall change in the neural state that reflects when movement is made rather than which movement is made. Specifically, we examined "components" of the population response: time-varying patterns of activity from which each neuron's response is approximately composed...
July 2016: ENeuro
Hye-Jin Tak, Tae-Jin Park, Piao Zhengguo, Sang-Hwy Lee
BACKGROUND: Syngnathia is a congenital craniofacial disorder characterized by bony or soft tissue fusion of upper and lower jaws. Previous studies suggested some causative signals, such as Foxc1 or Bmp4, cause the disruption of maxillomandibular identity, but their location and the interactive signals involved remain unexplored. We thus wanted to examine the embryonic origin of syngnathia based on the assumption that it may be located at the separation between the maxillary and mandibular processes...
October 18, 2016: Developmental Dynamics: An Official Publication of the American Association of Anatomists
Timothy O'Leary, Eve Marder
Many species of cold-blooded animals experience substantial and rapid fluctuations in body temperature. Because biological processes are differentially temperature dependent, it is difficult to understand how physiological processes in such animals can be temperature robust [1-8]. Experiments have shown that core neural circuits, such as the pyloric circuit of the crab stomatogastric ganglion (STG), exhibit robust neural activity in spite of large (20°C) temperature fluctuations [3, 5, 7, 8]. This robustness is surprising because (1) each neuron has many different kinds of ion channels with different temperature dependencies (Q10s) that interact in a highly nonlinear way to produce firing patterns and (2) across animals there is substantial variability in conductance densities that nonetheless produce almost identical firing properties...
October 1, 2016: Current Biology: CB
Heidi A Baseler, Andrew W Young, Rob Jenkins, A Mike Burton, Timothy J Andrews
Familiar face recognition is remarkably invariant across huge image differences, yet little is understood concerning how image-invariant recognition is achieved. To investigate the neural correlates of invariance, we localized the core face-responsive regions and then compared the pattern of fMR-adaptation to different stimulus transformations in each region to behavioural data demonstrating the impact of the same transformations on familiar face recognition. In Experiment 1, we compared linear transformations of size and aspect ratio to a non-linear transformation affecting only part of the face...
October 10, 2016: Neuropsychologia
Alexei L Vyssotski, Anna E Stepien, Georg B Keller, Richard H R Hahnloser
What cortical inputs are provided to motor control areas while they drive complex learned behaviors? We study this question in the nucleus interface of the nidopallium (NIf), which is required for normal birdsong production and provides the main source of auditory input to HVC, the driver of adult song. In juvenile and adult zebra finches, we find that spikes in NIf projection neurons precede vocalizations by several tens of milliseconds and are insensitive to distortions of auditory feedback. We identify a local isometry between NIf output and vocalizations: quasi-identical notes produced in different syllables are preceded by highly similar NIf spike patterns...
October 2016: PLoS Biology
Noga S Ensenberg, Anat Perry, Hillel Aviezer
Although we encounter numerous expressive faces on a daily basis, those that are not aimed at us will often be disregarded. Facial expressions aimed at our direction appear far more relevant and evoke an engaging affective experience, while the exact same expressions aimed away from us may not. While the importance of expression directionality is intuitive and commonplace, the neural mechanisms underlying this phenomenon are largely unknown. In the current study we measured EEG mu rhythm suppression, an established measure of mirror neuron activity, while participants viewed short video clips of dynamic facial expressions...
October 8, 2016: Cognitive, Affective & Behavioral Neuroscience
Francisca F Vasconcelos, Alessandro Sessa, Cátia Laranjeira, Alexandre A S F Raposo, Vera Teixeira, Daniel W Hagey, Diogo M Tomaz, Jonas Muhr, Vania Broccoli, Diogo S Castro
The generation of neurons from neural stem cells requires large-scale changes in gene expression that are controlled to a large extent by proneural transcription factors, such as Ascl1. While recent studies have characterized the differentiation genes activated by proneural factors, less is known on the mechanisms that suppress progenitor cell identity. Here, we show that Ascl1 induces the transcription factor MyT1 while promoting neuronal differentiation. We combined functional studies of MyT1 during neurogenesis with the characterization of its transcriptional program...
October 4, 2016: Cell Reports
Alexis D J Makin, Damien Wright, Giulia Rampone, Letizia Palumbo, Martin Guest, Rhiannon Sheehan, Helen Cleaver, Marco Bertamini
A traditional line of work starting with the Gestalt school has shown that patterns vary in strength and salience; a difference in "Perceptual goodness." The Holographic weight of evidence model quantifies goodness of visual regularities. The key formula states that W = E/N, where E is number of holographic identities in a pattern and N is number of elements. We tested whether W predicts the amplitude of the neural response to regularity in an extrastriate symmetry-sensitive network. We recorded an Event Related Potential (ERP) generated by symmetry called the Sustained Posterior Negativity (SPN)...
October 4, 2016: Cerebral Cortex
Steven C Dakin, Philip R K Turnbull
Although the contrast sensitivity function (CSF) is a particularly useful way of characterising functional vision, its measurement relies on observers making reliable perceptual reports. Such procedures can be challenging when testing children. Here we describe a system for measuring the CSF using an automated analysis of optokinetic nystagmus (OKN); an involuntary oscillatory eye movement made in response to drifting stimuli, here spatial-frequency (SF) band-pass noise. Quantifying the strength of OKN in the stimulus direction allows us to estimate contrast sensitivity across a range of SFs...
October 4, 2016: Scientific Reports
Katja Weibert, Richard J Harris, Alexandra Mitchell, Hollie Byrne, Andrew W Young, Timothy J Andrews
The ability to recognise familiar faces with ease across different viewing conditions contrasts with the inherent difficulty in the perception of unfamiliar faces across similar image manipulations. Models of face processing suggest that this difference is based on the neural representation for familiar faces being more invariant to changes in the image, than it is for unfamiliar faces. Here, we used an fMR-adaptation paradigm to investigate neural correlates of image-invariant face recognition in face-selective regions of the human brain...
September 10, 2016: Cortex; a Journal Devoted to the Study of the Nervous System and Behavior
Rameshwar K Sharma, Teresa Duda, Clint L Makino
This monograph presents a historical perspective of cornerstone developments on the biochemistry and physiology of mammalian membrane guanylate cyclases (MGCs), highlighting contributions made by the authors and their collaborators. Upon resolution of early contentious studies, cyclic GMP emerged alongside cyclic AMP, as an important intracellular second messenger for hormonal signaling. However, the two signaling pathways differ in significant ways. In the cyclic AMP pathway, hormone binding to a G protein coupled receptor leads to stimulation or inhibition of an adenylate cyclase, whereas the cyclic GMP pathway dispenses with intermediaries; hormone binds to an MGC to affect its activity...
2016: Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience
Xiujuan Zhang, Ying Chen, Ying Ye, Jianfeng Wang, Hong Wang, Guohong Yuan, Zhe Lin, Yihui Wu, Yan Zhang, Xinhua Lin
Wnt signaling plays essential roles in both embryonic pattern formation and postembryonic tissue homoestasis. High levels of Wnt activity repress foregut identity and facilitate hindgut fate through forming a gradient of Wnt signaling activity along the anterior-posterior axis. Here, we examined the mechanisms of Wnt signaling in hindgut development by differentiating human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) into the hindgut progenitors. We observed severe morphological changes when Wnt signaling was blocked by using Wnt antagonist Dkk1...
September 29, 2016: Cellular Signalling
Xueliang Shang, Bo Xu, Qun Li, Baohui Zhai, Xiaxia Xu, Tao Zhang
This study aims to investigate if neural oscillations can play a role as a bridge between the alteration of glutamatergic system and emotional behaviors in simulated microgravity (SM) mice. Adult male C57BL/6J mice were randomly divided into two groups: SM and control groups. The animal model was established by hindlimb unloading (HU). The mice were exposed to HU continued for 14days. Weight and sucrose consumption were measured. The degree of anxious and depressive was evaluated by Open field test and Elevated plus maze test...
September 28, 2016: Behavioural Brain Research
Sonya Galant, Giacomo Furlan, Marion Coolen, Lara Dirian, Isabelle Foucher, Laure Bally-Cuif
Neurogenesis in the post-embryonic vertebrate brain varies in extent and efficiency between species and brain territories. Distinct neurogenesis modes may account for this diversity, and several neural progenitor subtypes, radial glial cells (RG) and neuroepithelial progenitors (NE), have been identified in the adult zebrafish brain. The neurogenic sequences issued from these progenitors, and their contribution to brain construction, remain incompletely understood. Here we use genetic tracing techniques based on conditional Cre recombination and Tet-On neuronal birthdating to unravel the neurogenic sequence operating from NE progenitors in the zebrafish post-embryonic optic tectum...
September 27, 2016: Developmental Biology
Brian A Anderson
Through associative reward learning, arbitrary cues acquire the ability to automatically capture visual attention. Previous studies have examined the neural correlates of value-driven attentional orienting, revealing elevated activity within a network of brain regions encompassing the visual corticostriatal loop (caudate tail, lateral occipital complex (LOC), and early visual cortex) and intraparietal sulcus (IPS). Such attentional priority signals raise a broader question concerning how visual signals are combined with reward signals during learning to create a representation that is sensitive to the confluence of the two...
September 27, 2016: Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience
Michael H Heggeness, Nora Strong, Paul H Wooley, Shang-You Yang
BACKGROUND: The clinical use of recombinant human bone morphogenic protein 2 (rhBMP-2, Infuse) has been associated with nerve-related complications including new-onset sciatica, and retrograde ejaculation. PURPOSE: To better understand the interaction of rhBMP-2 and peripheral nerves with the intent of making procedures safer. STUDY DESIGN/SETTING: Using a mouse model to examine the direct effect of diluted rhBMP-2 (Infuse) on murine sciatic nerves...
September 21, 2016: Spine Journal: Official Journal of the North American Spine Society
Gennady Erlikhman, Gideon P Caplovitz
During dynamic occlusion, an object passes behind an occluding surface and then later reappears. Even when completely occluded from view, such objects are experienced as continuing to exist or persist behind the occluder, even though they are no longer visible. The contents and neural basis of this persistent representation remain poorly understood. Questions remain as to whether there is information maintained about the object itself (i.e. its shape or identity) or, non-object-specific information such as its position or velocity as it is tracked behind an occluder as well as which areas of visual cortex represent such information...
September 20, 2016: NeuroImage
Zayna Chaker, Paolo Codega, Fiona Doetsch
Neural stem cells (NSCs) reside in specialized niches in the adult mammalian brain. The ventricular-subventricular zone (V-SVZ), adjacent to the lateral ventricles, gives rise to olfactory bulb (OB) neurons, and some astrocytes and oligodendrocytes throughout life. In vitro assays have been widely used to retrospectively identify NSCs. However, cells that behave as stem cells in vitro do not reflect the identity, diversity, and behavior of NSCs in vivo. Novel tools including fluorescence activated cell sorting, lineage-tracing, and clonal analysis have uncovered multiple layers of adult V-SVZ NSC heterogeneity, including proliferation state and regional identity...
November 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. Developmental Biology
Vasco Meneghini, Giacomo Frati, Davide Sala, Silvia De Cicco, Marco Luciani, Chiara Cavazzin, Marianna Paulis, Wieslawa Mentzen, Francesco Morena, Serena Giannelli, Francesca Sanvito, Anna Villa, Alessandro Bulfone, Vania Broccoli, Sabata Martino, Angela Gritti
: : Allogeneic fetal-derived human neural stem cells (hfNSCs) that are under clinical evaluation for several neurodegenerative diseases display a favorable safety profile, but require immunosuppression upon transplantation in patients. Neural progenitors derived from patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) may be relevant for autologous ex vivo gene-therapy applications to treat genetic diseases with unmet medical need. In this scenario, obtaining iPSC-derived neural stem cells (NSCs) showing a reliable "NSC signature" is mandatory...
September 16, 2016: Stem Cells Translational Medicine
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