What’s New at the Journal of Neurophysiology?

July 18, 2016

The monthly newsletters for the Journal of Neurophysiology are a great way to discover our latest initiatives and features. You can also find out about upcoming events and meetings. In this podcast, Editor-in-Chief, Bill Yates, discusses some of the newest initiatives of the Journal and highlights some of the more popular topics from past newsletters.

Read the July 2016 newsletter.

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Integration of Transplanted Interneurons

July 14, 2016

Transplanted interneurons have potential therapeutic value for treating a variety of neurological disorders, including epilepsy. Yet, a better understanding of how new interneurons integrate into native neural networks is needed to uncover the therapeutic mechanisms behind interneuron-based cell therapy. Seeking to clarify how transplanted interneurons integrate into the neural circuitry of the recipient brain, Scott Baraban and MacKenzie Howard, both from the University of California, San Francisco, measured excitatory synaptic inputs, intrinsic properties, and inhibitory synaptic outputs of fluorescently labeled interneurons derived from embryonic medial ganglionic eminence progenitor cells that had been transplanted into the brains of recipient mice. Listen as Editor-in-Chief Bill Yates (University of Pittsburgh), content expert Steven Roper (University of Florida), and author MacKenzie Howard discuss the background and intriguing aspects of this work as well as its translational goals.

Synaptic integration of transplanted interneuron progenitor cells into native cortical networks
MacKenzie Allen Howard, Scott C. Baraban
Journal of Neurophysiology, published online May 25, 2016. DOI: 10.1152/jn.00321.2016 .

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Another Look at the Neurophysiology of Tactile Perception

June 27, 2016

"This special issue is a testament to the vibrancy of the field that Steve played a major role in shaping."

Listen as Sliman Bensmaia (University of Chicago) recollects working with Steve Hsiao, summarizes his contribution to our collection of articles on the neurophysiology of tactile perception, and discusses the breadth of the somatosensory research represented in the collection.

Read our collection of articles on the neurophysiology of tactile perception.

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Divergence of Retinal Information to the Brain

June 23, 2016

The mammalian retina conveys the vast majority of information about visual stimuli to two brain regions: the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus and the superior colliculus. However, the degree to which retinal ganglion cells send similar or distinct information to these two areas remains unclear. To resolve this ambiguity, Erika Ellis and colleagues used retrograde-labeling techniques to study retinal ganglion cells labeled from the lateral geniculate nucleus, the superior colliculus, or both. In this podcast, Editor-in-Chief Bill Yates (University of Pittsburgh), and content experts Greg Schwartz (Northwestern University) and Samuel Solomon (University College London) join authors Erika Ellis (Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, University of Miami) and Gabe Murphy (Allen Institute for Brain Science) in an engaging discussion about strategies to retrogradely label cells in an unbiased, robust, and specific way and several functional differences in the populations of retinal ganglion cells labeled from the two major retinorecipient brains areas. What do these results tell us about the flow of visual information between these areas, and what could these results tells us about human vision in health or disease? Listen and find out.

Shared and distinct retinal input to the mouse superior colliculus and dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus
Erika M. Ellis, Gregory Gauvain, Benjamin Sivyer, Gabe J. Murphy
Journal of Neurophysiology, published online May 11, 2016. DOI: 10.1152/jn.00227.2016.

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Effects of Aging on Amplitude-Modulated Encoding in Primary Auditory Cortex

June 3, 2016

Temporal envelope processing is critical for speech comprehension, which is known to be affected by normal aging. While the macaque is an excellent animal model for human cerebral cortical function, few studies have investigated neural processing in the auditory cortex of aged non-human primates. In this podcast, Editor-in-Chief Bill Yates (University of Pittsburgh), Associate Editor Conny Kopp-Scheinpflug (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München), content expert Robert Frisina (University of South Florida) join lead author Jacqueline Overton (UC Davis Center for Neuroscience) in an engaging discussion about age-related changes in the spiking activity of neurons in primary auditory cortex of aged macaque monkeys. What is the role and importance of rate and temporal codes in representing dynamic auditory stimuli? Listen and find out.

Effects of aging on the response of single neurons to amplitude-modulated noise in primary auditory cortex of rhesus macaque
Jacqueline A. Overton, Gregg H. Recanzone
Journal of Neurophysiology, published June 3, 2016. DOI: 10.1152/jn.01098.2015.

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Neurophysiology of Tactile Perception

June 1, 2016

Listen as Jeff Yau (Baylor College of Medicine) describes his experience working with Steve Hsiao at Johns Hopkins University, summarizes his contribution to our collection of articles on the neurophysiology of tactile perception, and discusses the value of this collection for those involved in somatosensory research.

Read our collection of articles on the neurophysiology of tactile perception.

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Visual Ecology and Potassium Conductances of Insect Photoreceptors

May 25, 2016

Important insights into neurobiology are gained through comparisons of neural systems and processes across species. By understanding the differences between the nervous systems of animals in relation to their behavior and environmental challenges, we can ascertain how the nervous system integrates information and generates motor responses. In this podcast, Editor-in-Chief Bill Yates (University of Pittsburgh) and Associate Editor Patsy Dickinson (Bowdoin College) join lead author Roman Frolov (University of Oulu) in an enlightening discussion on the visual ecology and potassium conductances of photoreceptors in 15 species of various orders of insects characterized by highly variable lifestyles. What can the combination of electrophysiology and visual ecology tells us about Kv channel selection in insects? Listen and find out.

Visual ecology and potassium conductances of insect photoreceptors
Roman Frolov, Esa-Ville Immonen, Matti Weckström
Journal of Neurophysiology, published April 1, 2016. DOI: 10.1152/jn.00795.2015.

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Local and Global Contributions to Hemodynamic Activity in Mouse Cortex

May 17, 2016

Imaging techniques such as functional magnetic resonance imaging seek to estimate neural signals in local brain regions through measurements of hemodynamic activity, but what is the significance of the large vascular fluctuations that accompany this activity, and what impact do these fluctuations have on estimates of neural signals? In this podcast, Editor-in-Chief Bill Yates (University of Pittsburgh) and content expert Aniruddha Das (Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons) join authors Andrea Pisauro (University of Glasgow) and Matteo Carandini (University College London) in an engaging discussion about their use of optical imaging in visual cortex of awake mice to characterize these vascular fluctuations. Are these fluctuations just noise, or do they actually reflect variations in the brain state? Listen and find out.

Local and global contributions to hemodynamic activity in mouse cortex
M. Andrea Pisauro, Andrea Benucci, Matteo Carandini
Journal of Neurophysiology, published online March 16, 2016. DOI: 10.1152/jn.00125.2016.

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DREADD Activation of Subfornical Organ Neurons

May 10, 2016

Circumventricular organs are specialized brain nuclei that lack a complete blood-brain barrier. These areas contain specialized sensory neurons to detect substances in the circulation to subsequently alter brain function. One such region, the subfornical organ, plays a pivotal role in body fluid homeostasis and autonomic function including neurogenic forms of hypertension and cardiovascular disease. In this podcast, Editor-in-Chief Bill Yates (University of Pittsburgh) and guest expert Alastair Ferguson (Queen's University) join authors Sean Stocker (Penn State College of Medicine), Haley Nation (Penn State College of Medicine) and Brian Kinsman (Penn State College of Medicine) in an engaging discussion about their investigation into whether selective activation of subfornical organ neurons using virally-mediated expression of Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drugs, or DREADDs, stimulates thirst and salt appetite. Could neurons of the subfornical organ be a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of body fluid homeostatic disorders and cardiovascular disease? Listen and find out.

DREADD-induced activation of subfornical organ neurons stimulates thirst and salt appetite
Haley L. Nation, Marvin Nicoleau, Brian J. Kinsman, Kirsteen N. Browning, Sean D. Stocker
Journal of Neurophysiology, published online March 30, 2016. DOI: 10.1152/jn.00149.2016.

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Neurobiology of Deep Brain Stimulation

April 27, 2016

What is deep brain stimulation? How does it work? Listen as Editor-in-Chief Bill Yates (University of Pittsburgh) and neurosurgeon Dr. Mark Richardson (University of Pittsburgh) discuss this therapeutic technique that has been effective in treating Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor, dystonia, chronic pain, and other diseases. Dr. Richardson also provides some valuable insight into our collection of articles on research related to the neurobiology of deep brain stimulation.

Read our collection of articles on the neurobiology of deep brain stimulation. (Image source: DOI 10.1152/jn.00275.2015)

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