Navigation Links
MIT: Making waves in the brain
Date:4/26/2009

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--Scientists have studied high-frequency brain waves, known as gamma oscillations, for more than 50 years, believing them crucial to consciousness, attention, learning and memory. Now, for the first time, MIT researchers and colleagues have found a way to induce these waves by shining laser light directly onto the brains of mice.

The work takes advantage of a newly developed technology known as optogenetics, which combines genetic engineering with light to manipulate the activity of individual nerve cells. The research helps explain how the brain produces gamma waves and provides new evidence of the role they play in regulating brain functions insights that could someday lead to new treatments for a range of brain-related disorders.

"Gamma waves are known to be [disrupted] in people with schizophrenia and other psychiatric and neurological diseases," says Li-Huei Tsai, Picower Professor of Neuroscience and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator. "This new tool will give us a great chance to probe the function of these circuits."

Tsai co-authored a paper about the work that appears in the April 26 online issue of Nature.

Gamma oscillations reflect the synchronous activity of large interconnected networks of neurons, firing together at frequencies ranging from 20 to 80 cycles per second. "These oscillations are thought to be controlled by a specific class of inhibitory cells known as fast-spiking interneurons," says Jessica Cardin, co-lead author on the study and a postdoctoral fellow at MIT's McGovern Institute for Brain Research. "But until now, a direct test of this idea was not possible."

To determine which neurons are responsible for driving the oscillations, the researchers used a protein called channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2), which can sensitize neurons to light. "By combining several genetic tricks, we were able to express ChR2 in different classes of neurons, allowing us to manipulate their
'/>"/>

Contact: Elizabeth Thomson
thomson@mit.edu
617-258-5402
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Making a point: Picoscale stability in a room-temperature AFM
2. It takes a genome: How a clash between our genes and modern life is making us sick
3. MacArthur Foundation awards planning grant to improve decision-making in energy policy
4. U of Minnesota research finds most road salt is making it into the states lakes and rivers
5. Process can cut the cost of making cellulosic biofuels
6. How chromosomes meet in the dark -- Switch that turns on X chromosome matchmaking
7. Tips for making a green holiday from the worlds largest scientific society
8. Making the ultimate family sacrifice
9. Scientists present moving theory behind bacterial decision-making
10. Making flies sick reveals new role for growth factors in immunity
11. Making metabolism more inefficient can reduce obesity
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:8/28/2014)... at the University of Minnesota have developed an animal ... used for muscle regeneration research as well as studies ... The research is published in the current edition of ... no treatment for FSHD, which is thought by many ... FSHD is an unusual genetic disorder because, unlike most ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... compounds that could positively impact the global ... possible, thanks to researchers in Penn State,s ... suppository made from the seaweed-derived food ingredient ... Tenofovir provides a woman-initiated, drug-delivery vehicle that ... transmitted infections during unprotected heterosexual intercourse, the ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... new roads will be built worldwide by 2050. Many ... where they bring an influx of destructive loggers, hunters ... has created a ,global roadmap, for prioritising road building ... demands of development and environmental protection. , The map ... natural importance of ecosystems and a ,road-benefits, layer that ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):UMN researchers find animal model for understudied type of muscular dystrophy 2Sensory-tested drug-delivery vehicle could limit spread of HIV, AIDS 2Sensory-tested drug-delivery vehicle could limit spread of HIV, AIDS 3Study shows where on the planet new roads should and should not go 2Study shows where on the planet new roads should and should not go 3
... Hamilton, Nov. 11, 2013 Researchers at McMaster University have ... and it may serve as a way to measure injury. ... muscle damage biomarker," said Thomas Hawke, principal investigator and an ... at McMaster. "Regardless of the way in which ...
... after giving birth plays a big factor in the quantity and ... University of Missouri have found that subclinical hypocalcemia, which is the ... occurs in many cows after giving birth, is related to higher ... the MU College of Veterinary Medicine, says these higher levels of ...
... his sons less sensitive to the drug and thereby more ... animal study presented by Penn Medicine researchers at Neuroscience 2013, ... The study, led by Mathieu Wimmer, PhD, a post-doctoral researcher ... of Neuroscience in Psychiatry at the Perelman School of Medicine ...
Cached Biology News:Low levels of blood calcium in dairy cows may affect cow health and productivity, MU study finds 2Sons of cocaine-using fathers may resist addiction to drug, Penn Medicine study suggests 2
(Date:8/29/2014)... Due to a misstatement posted by the ... Cell Technology Center, LLC ( ASCTC ) was reported as ... that might benefit ALS patients. Because of ASCTC's exclusive ... technologies and therapeutic applications, FRC listed ASCTC as one of ... who wish not to support research that requires the death ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... 28, 2014 Best Sanitizers, Inc., a ... food processing industry, is asking industry professionals to prepare ... of the E2 soap they’re currently using to the ... . Hand hygiene is critical to fighting cross-contamination ... environment. Six key criteria are identified to evaluate the ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... devices in spintronics, an electronic which is not ... also on their spin and the spin-related magnetism. ... magnetic signals and vice versa. Recently, the research ... of Physics at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz in ... Japan, has for the first time realised a ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... SunTrust Robinson Humphrey (STRH) today announced the ... research team in biotechnology and oilfield services.  ... demonstrates our commitment to providing our valued institutional ... decision making," said Biff Woodruff , Head ... significant investments in differentiated content at a time ...
Breaking Biology Technology:The Adult Stem Cell Technology Center, LLC Declines ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Donors Wishing to Support Ethical Research for New Stem Cell Therapies 2The Adult Stem Cell Technology Center, LLC Declines ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Donors Wishing to Support Ethical Research for New Stem Cell Therapies 3Best Sanitizers, Inc. Asks Food Industry Professionals: With Fall Harvest On the Way, Is Your E2 Hand Soap Up to the Task? 2A new, tunable device for spintronics 2A new, tunable device for spintronics 3SunTrust Robinson Humphrey Expands Equity Research in Healthcare and Energy 2SunTrust Robinson Humphrey Expands Equity Research in Healthcare and Energy 3
Mouse monoclonal [AZ24] to Polo like kinase ( Abpromise for all tested applications)....
... brings together two mature, well-understood technologies: ... surfaces. This combination produces a sensitive ... detection of molecular binding events without ... Protein-specific capture molecules are immobilized on ...
... LabWorks Software provides a comprehensive experiment based ... drop down menus yet sophisticated and powerful ... dozens of CCD cameras for easy image ... , Automated Digital Video Playback ...
RABBIT ANTI HUMAN ALPHA-2-ANTIPLASMIN...
Biology Products: