Non-Boolean characterization of Homer1a intranuclear transcription foci

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Witharana, Wing Kar Li
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Dept. of Neuroscience, c2011
Activity-induced immediate-early gene (IEG) transcription foci can be labelled with fluorescent probes, permitting high temporal and spatial resolution in mapping neuronal circuits. Previous quantification approaches have assumed a Boolean function of transcription foci, assuming that cells are either active or inactive. Due to multiple amplification steps in the in situ hybridization process, it was thought that information relating to magnitudes of firing rates was lost. However, the current data suggest that transcription foci actually exhibit non-Boolean intensity and size values which vary according to behavioural condition. Systematic characterization of transcription foci intensity and size revealed incremental variations such that: home-cage < one-environment exposure < five-environment exposure < maximal electroconvulsive shock. Visual differences in transcription foci may result from a quantifiable relationship between spiking patterns and transcription rates. The exact stoichiometry between neuronal spiking and transcription is not yet clear, but these results suggest that Boolean applications of IEG imaging may neglect accurate neuronal activation properties.
xvi, 125 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm
Scaffold proteins -- Research , Neuroplasticity , Transcription factors , Neural circuitry , Hippocampus (Brain) , Rats as laboratory animals , Fluorescence in situ hybridization , Dissertations, Academic