Simultaneous cellular-resolution optical perturbation and imaging of place cell firing fields.
ABSTRACT: Linking neural microcircuit function to emergent properties of the mammalian brain requires fine-scale manipulation and measurement of neural activity during behavior, where each neuron's coding and dynamics can be characterized. We developed an optical method for simultaneous cellular-resolution stimulation and large-scale recording of neuronal activity in behaving mice. Dual-wavelength two-photon excitation allowed largely independent functional imaging with a green fluorescent calcium sensor (GCaMP3, ? = 920 ± 6 nm) and single-neuron photostimulation with a red-shifted optogenetic probe (C1V1, ? = 1,064 ± 6 nm) in neurons coexpressing the two proteins. We manipulated task-modulated activity in individual hippocampal CA1 place cells during spatial navigation in a virtual reality environment, mimicking natural place-field activity, or 'biasing', to reveal subthreshold dynamics. Notably, manipulating single place-cell activity also affected activity in small groups of other place cells that were active around the same time in the task, suggesting a functional role for local place cell interactions in shaping firing fields.
Project description:Two-photon (2-P) all-optical approaches combine <i>in vivo</i> 2-P calcium imaging and 2-P optogenetic modulations. Here, firstly, we combined <i>in vivo</i> juxtacellular recordings and GCaMP6f-based 2-P calcium imaging in mouse visual cortex to tune our detection algorithm towards a 100% specific identification of action potential-related calcium transients. Secondly, we minimized photostimulation artifacts by using extended-wavelength-spectrum laser sources for optogenetic stimulation. We achieved artifact-free all-optical experiments performing optogenetic stimulation from 1100 nm to 1300 nm. Thirdly, we determined the spectral range for maximizing efficacy until 1300 nm. The rate of evoked transients in GCaMP6f/C1V1-co-expressing cortical neurons peaked already at 1100 nm. By refining spike detection and defining 1100 nm as the optimal wavelength for artifact-free and effective GCaMP6f/C1V1-based all-optical physiology, we increased the translational value of these approaches, e.g., for the development of network-based therapies.
Project description:The computations performed by local neural populations, such as a cortical layer, are typically inferred from anatomical connectivity and observations of neural activity. Here we describe a method-influence mapping-that uses single-neuron perturbations to directly measure how cortical neurons reshape sensory representations. In layer 2/3 of the primary visual cortex (V1), we use two-photon optogenetics to trigger action potentials in a targeted neuron and calcium imaging to measure the effect on spiking in neighbouring neurons in awake mice viewing visual stimuli. Excitatory neurons on average suppressed other neurons and had a centre-surround influence profile over anatomical space. A neuron's influence on its neighbour depended on their similarity in activity. Notably, neurons suppressed activity in similarly tuned neurons more than in dissimilarly tuned neurons. In addition, photostimulation reduced the population response, specifically to the targeted neuron's preferred stimulus, by around 2%. Therefore, V1 layer 2/3 performed feature competition, in which a like-suppresses-like motif reduces redundancy in population activity and may assist with inference of the features that underlie sensory input. We anticipate that influence mapping can be extended to investigate computations in other neural populations.
Project description:Significance:Recent advances in nonlinear optics in neuroscience have focused on using two ultrafast lasers for activity imaging and optogenetic stimulation. Broadband femtosecond light sources can obviate the need for multiple lasers by spectral separation for chromatically targeted excitation. Aim:We present a photonic crystal fiber (PCF)-based supercontinuum source for spectrally resolved two-photon (2P) imaging and excitation of GCaMP6s and C1V1-mCherry, respectively. Approach:A PCF is pumped using a 20-MHz repetition rate femtosecond laser to generate a supercontinuum of light, which is spectrally separated, compressed, and recombined to image GCaMP6s (930 nm excitation) and stimulate the optogenetic protein, C1V1-mCherry (1060 nm excitation). Galvanometric spiral scanning is employed on a single-cell level for multiphoton excitation and high-speed resonant scanning is employed for imaging of calcium activity. Results:Continuous wave lasers were used to verify functionality of optogenetic activation followed by directed 2P excitation. Results from these experiments demonstrate the utility of a supercontinuum light source for simultaneous, single-cell excitation and calcium imaging. Conclusions:A PCF-based supercontinuum light source was employed for simultaneous imaging and excitation of calcium dynamics in brain tissue. Pumped PCFs can serve as powerful light sources for imaging and activation of neural activity, and overcome the limited spectra and space associated with multilaser approaches.
Project description:Spatial navigation is often used as a behavioral task in studies of the neuronal circuits that underlie cognition, learning and memory in rodents. The combination of in vivo microscopy with genetically encoded indicators has provided an important new tool for studying neuronal circuits, but has been technically difficult to apply during navigation. Here we describe methods for imaging the activity of neurons in the CA1 region of the hippocampus with subcellular resolution in behaving mice. Neurons that expressed the genetically encoded calcium indicator GCaMP3 were imaged through a chronic hippocampal window. Head-restrained mice performed spatial behaviors in a setup combining a virtual reality system and a custom-built two-photon microscope. We optically identified populations of place cells and determined the correlation between the location of their place fields in the virtual environment and their anatomical location in the local circuit. The combination of virtual reality and high-resolution functional imaging should allow a new generation of studies to investigate neuronal circuit dynamics during behavior.
Project description:Partial unilateral lentiginosis (PUL) is an unusual pigmentary disorder characterized by numerous lentigines grouped within an area of normal skin. Although treatment is not necessary, many patients with facial PUL seek medical help for cosmetic reasons. There is no established standard treatment for PUL. Conventional lasers may cause postinflammatory hyperpigmentation because keratinocytes are injured during the process. Also, scarring, long downtime, and pain are important issues. A 19-year-old patient with facial PUL was successfully treated with low-fluence 1,064-nm Q-switched neodymium-doped yttrium aluminum garnet (QS Nd:YAG) laser. Although the exact mechanism by which low-fluence 1,064-nm QS Nd:YAG laser improves pigmentary lesions is unclear, the terms "subcellular selective photothermolysis" and "melanocyte apoptosis and replacement" have been proposed. If appropriate measures are taken to monitor patient response during and after the procedure, low-fluence 1,064-nm QS Nd:YAG laser may achieve good cosmetic results in the treatment of PUL with a very safe and effective profile.
Project description:The C. elegans nervous system is particularly well suited for optogenetic analyses of circuit function: Essentially all connections have been mapped, and light can be directed at the neuron of interest in the freely moving, transparent animals, while behavior is observed. Thus, different nodes of a neuronal network can be probed for their role in controlling a particular behavior, using different optogenetic tools for photo-activation or -inhibition, which respond to different colors of light. As neurons may act in concert or in opposing ways to affect a behavior, one would further like to excite these neurons concomitantly, yet independent of each other. In addition to the blue-light activated Channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2), spectrally red-shifted ChR variants have been explored recently. Here, we establish the green-light activated ChR chimera C1V1 (from Chlamydomonas and Volvox ChR1's) for use in C. elegans. We surveyed a number of red-shifted ChRs, and found that C1V1-ET/ET (E122T; E162T) works most reliable in C. elegans, with 540-580 nm excitation, which leaves ChR2 silent. However, as C1V1-ET/ET is very light sensitive, it still becomes activated when ChR2 is stimulated, even at 400 nm. Thus, we generated a highly efficient blue ChR2, the H134R; T159C double mutant (ChR2-HR/TC). Both proteins can be used in the same animal, in different neurons, to independently control each cell type with light, enabling a further level of complexity in circuit analyses.
Project description:Optogenetics is now a fundamental tool for investigating the relationship between neuronal activity and behavior. However, its application to the investigation of motor control systems in nonhuman primates is rather limited, because optogenetic stimulation of cortical neurons in nonhuman primates has failed to induce or modulate any hand/arm movements. Here, we used a tetracycline-inducible gene expression system carrying CaMKII promoter and the gene encoding a Channelrhodopsin-2 variant with fast kinetics in the common marmoset, a small New World monkey. In an awake state, forelimb movements could be induced when Channelrhodopsin-2-expressing neurons in the motor cortex were illuminated by blue laser light with a spot diameter of 1 mm or 2 mm through a cranial window without cortical invasion. Forelimb muscles responded 10 ms to 50 ms after photostimulation onset. Long-duration (500 ms) photostimulation induced discrete forelimb movements that could be markerlessly tracked with charge-coupled device cameras and a deep learning algorithm. Long-duration photostimulation mapping revealed that the primary motor cortex is divided into multiple domains that can induce hand and elbow movements in different directions. During performance of a forelimb movement task, movement trajectories were modulated by weak photostimulation, which did not induce visible forelimb movements at rest, around the onset of task-relevant movement. The modulation was biased toward the movement direction induced by the strong photostimulation. Combined with calcium imaging, all-optical interrogation of motor circuits should be possible in behaving marmosets.
Project description:In sensory systems, peripheral organs convey sensory inputs to relay networks where information is shaped by local microcircuits before being transmitted to cortical areas. In the olfactory system, odorants evoke specific patterns of sensory neuron activity that are transmitted to output neurons in olfactory bulb (OB) glomeruli. How sensory information is transferred and shaped at this level remains still unclear. Here we employ mouse genetics, 2-photon microscopy, electrophysiology and optogenetics, to identify a novel population of glutamatergic neurons (VGLUT3+) in the glomerular layer of the adult mouse OB as well as several of their synaptic targets. Both peripheral and serotoninergic inputs control VGLUT3+ neurons firing. Furthermore, we show that VGLUT3+ neuron photostimulation in vivo strongly suppresses both spontaneous and odour-evoked firing of bulbar output neurons. In conclusion, we identify and characterize here a microcircuit controlling the transfer of sensory information at an early stage of the olfactory pathway.
Project description:Light perception in birds is composed of the retina and extraretinal sites, located in the brain. Previous studies indicate that selective photostimulation of the eye decreased reproductive performance, whereas extraretinal photostimulation increases it. Differential photostimulation of the retina and extraretinal sites is based on the retina's sensitivity to green wavelengths and on the red wavelengths' ability to penetrate body tissues. We previously found that short-day exposure to green light within a long-day exposure to red light increases reproductive activity in female turkeys and broiler breeder hens. Furthermore, in a study conducted recently in our laboratory, we found that blue light repressed expression of green light receptor in the retina, which can further enhance reproduction activity in broiler breeders. Here, we examined the "brain activate/eye deactivate" hypothesis on gonadal axis activity and reproductive performance in a broiler breeder flock. Broiler breeder hens and roosters (ROSS 308) were divided into 5 light-treatment groups (controlled rooms with light-emitting diodes [LED] lamps): warm white (control), long-day (14 h) red (630 nm) and short-day (6 h) green (514 nm) (red-green), long-day green and short-day red (green-red), long-day red and short-day blue (456 nm) (red-blue), and long-day blue and short-day red (blue-red). Birds were reared from 20 to 55 wk of age. Eggs were collected daily. Weekly egg production calculated. All eggs were incubated for fertility and hatchability examination. Blood was drawn monthly for plasma analysis. At 35 wk of age (after peak production) and 55 wk of age (end of the experiment), 10 hens from each treatment group were euthanized, and selected tissues and glands were taken for gene expression trials. Providing long-day red light to extraretinal photoreceptors while maintaining retinal photoreceptors on short day with blue or green light significantly improved reproductive activities, manifested by elevated egg production and gonadal axis activity compared with Controls and primary breeder recommendations. Long-day green light reduced reproductive performances. We suggest that targeted photostimulation enhances reproductive and gonadal axis activities in broiler breeders.
Project description:Optoelectrical manipulation has recently gained attention for cellular engineering; however, few material platforms can be used to efficiently regulate stem cell behaviors via optoelectrical stimulation. In this study, we developed nanoweb substrates composed of photoactive polymer poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) to enhance the neurogenesis of human fetal neural stem cells (hfNSCs) through photo-induced electrical stimulation.The photoactive nanoweb substrates were fabricated by self-assembled one-dimensional (1D) P3HT nanostructures (nanofibrils and nanorods). The hfNSCs cultured on the P3HT nanoweb substrates were optically stimulated with a green light (539 nm) and then differentiation of hfNSCs on the substrates with light stimulation was examined. The utility of the nanoweb substrates for optogenetic application was tested with photo-responsive hfNSCs engineered by polymer nanoparticle-mediated transfection of an engineered chimeric opsin variant (C1V1)-encoding gene.The nanoweb substrates provided not only topographical stimulation for activating focal adhesion signaling of hfNSCs, but also generated optoelectrical stimulation via photochemical and charge-transfer reactions upon exposure to 539 nm wavelength light, leading to significantly enhanced neuronal differentiation of hfNSCs. The optoelectrically stimulated hfNSCs exhibited mature neuronal phenotypes with highly extended neurite formation and functional neuron-like electrophysiological features of sodium currents and action potentials. Optoelectrical stimulation with 539 nm light simultaneously activated both C1V1-modified hfNSCs and nanoweb substrates, which upregulated the expression and activation of voltage-gated ion channels in hfNSCs and further increased the effect of photoactive substrates on neuronal differentiation of hfNSCs.The photoactive nanoweb substrates developed in this study may serve as platforms for producing stem cell therapeutics with enhanced neurogenesis and neuromodulation via optoelectrical control of stem cells.