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Erica L Schoeller, Daniel D Clark, Sandeepa Dey, Nathan V Cao, Sheila J Semaan, Ling W Chao, Alexander S Kauffman, Lisa Stowers, Pamela L Mellon
Circadian rhythms synchronize physiological processes with the light-dark cycle and are regulated by a hierarchical system initiated in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), a hypothalamic region that receives direct photic input. The SCN then entrains additional oscillators in the periphery. Circadian rhythms are maintained by a molecular transcriptional feedback loop, of which BMAL1 is a key member. Disruption of circadian rhythms by deletion of the BMAL1 gene (Bmal1 KO) induces a variety of disease states, including infertility in males, due to unidentified mechanisms...
October 5, 2016: Endocrinology
Toshiharu Namba, Mutsuo Taniguchi, Yoshihiro Murata, Jia Tong, Yujie Wang, Fumino Okutani, Masahiro Yamaguchi, Hideto Kaba
Olfaction plays an important role in social recognition in most mammals. Central arginine vasopressin (AVP) plays a role in this olfaction-based recognition. The high level of expression of AVP receptors in the accessory olfactory bulb (AOB) at the first relay of the vomeronasal system highlights the importance of AVP signaling at this stage. We therefore analyzed the effects of AVP on the synaptic plasticity of glutamatergic transmission from mitral cells to granule cells in AOB slices from male mice. To monitor the strength of the glutamatergic transmission, we measured the maximal initial slope of the lateral olfactory tract-evoked field potential, which represents the granule cell response to mitral cell activation...
September 30, 2016: Neuroscience Letters
Tobias Ackels, Daniela R Drose, Marc Spehr
In most mammals, the vomeronasal organ (VNO) is a chemosensory structure that detects both hetero- and conspecific social cues. Vomeronasal sensory neurons (VSNs) express a specific type of G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) from at least three different chemoreceptor gene families allowing sensitive and specific detection of chemosensory cues. These families comprise the V1r and V2r gene families as well as the formyl peptide receptor (FPR)-related sequence (Fpr-rs) family of putative chemoreceptor genes. In order to understand the physiology of vomeronasal receptor-ligand interactions and downstream signaling, it is essential to identify the biophysical properties inherent to each specific class of VSNs...
2016: Journal of Visualized Experiments: JoVE
Jenne M Westberry, Michael Meredith
Chemosensory stimuli from same species (conspecific) and different species (heterospecific) elicit categorically different immediate-early gene (IEG) response patterns in medial amygdala in male hamsters and mice. All heterospecific stimuli activate anterior medial amygdala (MeA) but only especially salient heterospecific stimuli, such as those from predators activate posterior medial amygdala (MeP). We previously reported that characteristic patterns of response in separate populations of cells in MeA and MeP distinguish between different conspecific stimuli...
September 20, 2016: Chemical Senses
Rachel Claire Aland, Edward Gosden, Adrian J Bradley
The vomeronasal system consists of a peripheral organ and the connected central neuronal networks. The central connections are sexually dimorphic in rodents, and in some species, parameters of the vomeronasal organ (VNO) vary with sex, hormonal exposure, body size and seasonality. The VNO of the dasyurid marsupial mouse, Antechinus subtropicus is presumed to be functional. The unusual life history (male semelparity) is marked by distinct seasonality with differences in hormonal environments both between males and females, and in males at different time points...
November 2016: Journal of Morphology
Jung-Mi Choi, Sung-Soo Kim, Chan-Il Choi, Hye Lim Cha, Huy-Hyen Oh, Sungho Ghil, Young-Don Lee, Lutz Birnbaumer, Haeyoung Suh-Kim
In mammals, initial detection of olfactory stimuli is mediated by sensory neurons in the main olfactory epithelium (MOE) and the vomeronasal organ (VNO). The heterotrimeric GTP-binding protein Go is widely expressed in the MOE and VNO of mice. Early studies indicated that Go expression in VNO sensory neurons is critical for directing social and sexual behaviors in female mice [Oboti L, et al. (2014) BMC Biol 12:31]. However, the physiological functions of Go in the MOE have remained poorly defined. Here, we examined the role of Go in the MOE using mice lacking the α subunit of Go Development of the olfactory bulb (OB) was perturbed in mutant mice as a result of reduced neurogenesis and increased cell death...
September 27, 2016: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Melanie Lohrberg, Jörg Wilting
Histological studies of the lymphatic vascular system in adult mice are hampered because bones cannot be sectioned properly. Here, we decalcified the heads of 14-day-old mice, embedded them in paraffin and stained resultant serial sections with the lymphendothelial-specific antibodies Lyve-1 and Podoplanin. We show that the tissues with the highest lymphatic vascular density are the dermis and the oral mucous membranes. In contrast, the nasal mucous membrane is devoid of lymphatics, except for its most basal parts below the vomeronasal organ...
September 6, 2016: Cell and Tissue Research
Ignacio Salazar, Arthur W Barrios, Pablo Sánchez
"Olfactory subsystems" is a relatively new terminology to refer to the different regions of the nasal cavity featuring olfactory sensory neurons. In mice, the olfactory chemical cues are detected in four well delimited areas: the main olfactory epithelium, the septal organ, Grüneberg's ganglion, and the sensory epithelium of the vomeronasal organ. Nevertheless, such distribution is by no means exhibited by all mammals. In microsmatic mammals -humans included- the only existing olfactory subsystem is the main olfactory epithelium...
September 4, 2016: Anatomical Record: Advances in Integrative Anatomy and Evolutionary Biology
Pei Sabrina Xu, Donghoon Lee, Timothy E Holy
Different individuals exhibit distinct behaviors, but studying the neuronal basis of individuality is a daunting challenge. Here, we considered this question in the vomeronasal organ, a pheromone-detecting epithelium containing hundreds of distinct neuronal types. Using light-sheet microscopy, we characterized in each animal the abundance of 17 physiologically defined types, altogether recording from half a million sensory neurons. Inter-animal differences were much larger than predicted by chance, and different physiological cell types showed distinct patterns of variability...
August 17, 2016: Neuron
Yamit Beny, Tali Kimchi
Female-emitted pheromonal inputs possess an intrinsic rewarding value for conspecific males, promoting approach and investigation of the potential mating partner. In mice these inputs are detected mainly by the vomeronasal organ (VNO) and the main olfactory epithelium (MOE). We investigated the role of VNO-mediated inputs in experience-dependent plasticity of reproductive responses. We applied a sex-specific conditioned olfactory aversion (COA) paradigm on adult, wild-type (WT) male mice and on male mice impaired in VNO-mediated signal transduction (TrpC2(-/-) )...
August 18, 2016: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Isabelle Chang, Marta Parrilla
Homeodomain proteins are encoded by homeobox genes and regulate development and differentiation in many neuronal systems. The mouse vomeronasal organ (VNO) generates in situ mature chemosensory neurons from stem cells. The roles of homeodomain proteins in neuronal differentiation in the VNO are poorly understood. Here we have characterized the expression patterns of 28 homeobox genes in the VNO of C57BL/6 mice at postnatal stages using multicolor fluorescent in situ hybridization. We identified 11 homeobox genes (Dlx3, Dlx4, Emx2, Lhx2, Meis1, Pbx3, Pknox2, Pou6f1, Tshz2, Zhx1, Zhx3) that were expressed exclusively in neurons; 4 homeobox genes (Pax6, Six1, Tgif1, Zfhx3) that were expressed in all non-neuronal cell populations, with Pax6, Six1 and Tgif1 also expressed in some neuronal progenitors and precursors; 12 homeobox genes (Adnp, Cux1, Dlx5, Dlx6, Meis2, Pbx2, Pknox1, Pou2f1, Satb1, Tshz1, Tshz3, Zhx2) with expression in both neuronal and non-neuronal cell populations; and one homeobox gene (Hopx) that was exclusively expressed in the non-sensory epithelium...
July 2016: Gene Expression Patterns: GEP
Daisuke Kondoh, Akihiro Kamikawa, Motoki Sasaki, Nobuo Kitamura
Glycoconjugates in the olfactory system play critical roles in neuronal formation, and α1-2 fucose (α1-2Fuc) glycan mediates neurite outgrowth and synaptic plasticity. Histochemical findings of α1-2Fuc glycan in the mouse olfactory system detected using Ulex europaeus agglutinin-I (UEA-I) vary. This study histochemically assessed the main olfactory and vomeronasal pathways in male and female ICR and C57BL/6J mice aged 3-4 months using UEA-I. Ulex europaeus agglutinin-I reacted with most receptor cells arranged mainly at the basal region of the olfactory epithelium...
July 16, 2016: Cells, Tissues, Organs
Verena Untiet, Lisa M Moeller, Ximena Ibarra-Soria, Gabriela Sánchez-Andrade, Miriam Stricker, Eva M Neuhaus, Darren W Logan, Thomas Gensch, Marc Spehr
In rodents, the vomeronasal system controls social and sexual behavior. However, several mechanistic aspects of sensory signaling in the vomeronasal organ remain unclear. Here, we investigate the biophysical basis of a recently proposed vomeronasal signal transduction component-a Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) current. As the physiological role of such a current is a direct function of the Cl(-) equilibrium potential, we determined the intracellular Cl(-) concentration in dendritic knobs of vomeronasal neurons. Quantitative fluorescence lifetime imaging of a Cl(-)-sensitive dye at the apical surface of the intact vomeronasal neuroepithelium revealed increased cytosolic Cl(-) levels in dendritic knobs, a substantially lower Cl(-) concentration in vomeronasal sustentacular cells, and an apparent Cl(-) gradient in vomeronasal neurons along their dendritic apicobasal axis...
October 2016: Chemical Senses
David J A Orr, Emma C Teeling, Sébastien J Puechmaille, John A Finarelli
A normal feature of the facial anatomy of many species of bat is the presence of bony discontinuities or clefts, which bear a remarkable similarity to orofacial clefts that occur in humans as a congenital pathology. These clefts occur in two forms: a midline cleft between the two premaxillae (analogous to the rare midline craniofacial clefts in humans) and bilateral paramedian clefts between the premaxilla and the maxillae (analogous to the typical cleft lip and palate in humans). Here, we describe the distribution of orofacial clefting across major bat clades, exploring the relationship of the different patterns of clefting to feeding mode, development of the vomeronasal organ, development of the nasolacrimal duct and mode of emission of the echolocation call in different bat groups...
June 27, 2016: Journal of Anatomy
Guoli Zhu, Wenqiao Tang, Liangjiang Wang, Cong Wang, Xiaomei Wang
A number of studies have suggested that olfaction plays an important role in fish migration. Fish use several distinct families of olfactory receptors to detect environmental odorants, including MORs (main olfactory receptors), V1Rs (vomeronasal type-1 receptors), V2Rs (vomeronasal type-2 receptors), TAARs (trace amine-associated receptors), and FPRs (formyl peptide receptors). The V1Rs have been reported to detect pheromones, and a pheromone hypothesis for the spawning migration of anadromous fish has been proposed...
2016: Marine Biology
Kwang-Hyup Lee, Changnam Park, Jeongtae Kim, Changjong Moon, Meejung Ahn, Taekyun Shin
The morphological characteristics and glycoconjugate composition of the vomeronasal organ (VNO) of the horse was investigated using histological, immunohistochemical, and lectin histochemical methods. The VNO is bilaterally located at the base of the nasal septum, has a tubular structure surrounded by cartilage, and consists of sensory and non-sensory epithelia. Immunohistochemical examination showed that the vomeronasal sensory epithelium (VSE) consisted of receptor cells positive for both olfactory marker protein (OMP) and protein gene product 9...
August 2016: Tissue & Cell
Benjamin Stein, María Teresa Alonso, Frank Zufall, Trese Leinders-Zufall, Pablo Chamero
In mice, social behaviors such as mating and aggression are mediated by pheromones and related chemosignals. The vomeronasal organ (VNO) detects olfactory information from other individuals by sensory neurons tuned to respond to specific chemical cues. Receptors expressed by vomeronasal neurons are implicated in selective detection of these cues. Nearly 400 receptor genes have been identified in the mouse VNO, but the tuning properties of individual receptors remain poorly understood, in part due to the lack of a robust heterologous expression system...
2016: PloS One
Tatsuya Hattori, Takuya Osakada, Ayaka Matsumoto, Naoki Matsuo, Sachiko Haga-Yamanaka, Takaya Nishida, Yuji Mori, Kazutaka Mogi, Kazushige Touhara, Takefumi Kikusui
Exocrine gland-secreting peptide 1 (ESP1) released into male tear fluids is a male pheromone that stimulates sexually receptive behavior in female mice via the vomeronasal sensory system. ESP1 also induces c-Fos expression in male brain regions distinct from those in females. However, behavior in males following ESP1 exposure has not been examined. In the present study, we show that ESP1, in conjunction with unfamiliar male urine, enhances male aggression via the specific vomeronasal receptor V2Rp5. In addition, male mice that secrete ESP1 but lack V2Rp5 exhibit a lower level of aggressiveness than do mice that express V2Rp5...
May 9, 2016: Current Biology: CB
A K Manicka Vasuki, T K Aleyemma Fenn, M Nirmala Devi, T Deborah Joy Hebzibah, M Jamuna, K Kalyana Sundaram
INTRODUCTION: The existence of Vomeronasal organ in human is a controversial subject. Presence of Vomeronasal organ and its structure was not reported in standard text books. The presence of Vomeronasal organ in fetal life is doubtful. Hence identification of the organ by histological examination was planned. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A study was conducted on resected specimens of nasal septum obtained from 45 spontaneously aborted fetuses from Obstetrics and Gynaecology department, PSG Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Coimbatore, after ethical clearance...
March 2016: Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research: JCDR
Lisa Stowers, Stephen D Liberles
A single sensory cue can evoke different behaviors that vary by recipient. Responses may be influenced by sex, internal state, experience, genotype, and coincident environmental stimuli. Pheromones are powerful inducers of mouse behavior, yet pheromone responses are not always stereotyped. For example, male and female mice respond differently to sex pheromones while mothers and virgin females respond differently to pup cues. Here, we review the origins of variability in responses to reproductive pheromones...
June 2016: Current Opinion in Neurobiology
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