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mechanisms underlying sensory coding and plasticity in olfaction

English title mechanisms underlying sensory coding and plasticity in olfaction
Applicant Carleton Alan
Number 139189
Funding scheme SNSF Professorships
Research institution Dépt des Neurosciences Fondamentales Faculté de Médecine Université de Genève
Institution of higher education University of Geneva - GE
Main discipline Neurophysiology and Brain Research
Start/End 01.04.2012 - 31.03.2014
Approved amount 751'836.00
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Keywords (4)

sensory perception; plasticity; olfaction; neuromodulatio

Lay Summary (English)

Lead
Lay summary

How sensory processing is occurring into the brain and how to relate behavior to neuronal activities are key questions in modern neuroscience. Understanding the neural codes underlying brain function will be of great importance for future implementation of brain-machine interfaces. This research project proposes to study the cellular and network mechanisms controlling sensory perception. In particular, we would like to precise how sensory stimuli are coded by brain networks and how these representations may be influenced by experience or modulatory brain centers.

In order to address these general questions, we propose to study olfaction as model sensory system. The olfactory system is central to the behavior of rodents (animal models that we study), is highly plastic and largely modulated by the neuromodulatory brain centers. This system has a relatively simple organization (only two synapses from sensory neurons to the cortex…), integrates cues and drive specific behavior.

We propose to use a combination of genetic, electrophysiological, imaging and behavioral methods to study how odor information is processed in the central nervous system as it moves from the periphery to higher areas of the brain. We would like to study how odorant representation and sensory coding may be altered by sensory experience and top down inputs from neuromodulatory brain centers at different levels of the olfactory pathway (periphery, olfactory bulb and cortex).

We believe that the general questions about sensory coding and plasticity addressed in this project go beyond understanding olfactory sensory perception per se and could potentially be generalized to the function of many brain regions.

 

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Sensory-Evoked Intrinsic Imaging Signals in the Olfactory Bulb Are Independent of Neurovascular Coupling
Vincis Roberto, Lagier Samuel, Van de Ville Dimitri, Rodriguez Ivan, Carleton Alan (2015), Sensory-Evoked Intrinsic Imaging Signals in the Olfactory Bulb Are Independent of Neurovascular Coupling, in Cell reports, 313.
A population of glomerular glutamatergic neurons controls sensory information transfer in the mouse olfactory bulb
Tatti Roberta, Bhaukaurally Khaleel, Gschwend Olivier, Seal Rebecca, Edwards Robert, Rodriguez Ivan, Carleton Alan (2014), A population of glomerular glutamatergic neurons controls sensory information transfer in the mouse olfactory bulb, in Nature Communications, 5:3791, 1-16.
Long term functional plasticity of sensory inputs mediated by olfactory learning
Abraham Nixon, Vincis Roberto, Lagier Samuel, Rodriguez Ivan, Carleton Alan (2014), Long term functional plasticity of sensory inputs mediated by olfactory learning, in eLife, 3:e02109, 1-14.
Convergence of FPR-rs3-expressing neurons in the mouse accessory olfactory bulb
Dietschi Quentin, Assens Alexis, Challet Ludivine, Carleton Alan, Rodriguez Ivan (2013), Convergence of FPR-rs3-expressing neurons in the mouse accessory olfactory bulb, in Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, 56, 140-147.
Morphogenetic action through flux-limited spreading
Verbeni M, Sanchey O, Mollica E, Siegl-Cachedenier Irene, Carleton Alan, Guerrero Isabel, Ruiz I Altaba Ariel, Soler Juan (2013), Morphogenetic action through flux-limited spreading, in Physics of Life Reviews, 10, 457-475.
Odor representations in the olfactory bulb evolve after the first breath and persist as an odor afterimage
Patterson Michael, Lagier Samuel, Carleton Alan (2013), Odor representations in the olfactory bulb evolve after the first breath and persist as an odor afterimage, in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America PNAS, 110(35), E3340-E3349.
Similar Odor Discrimination Behavior in Head-Restrained and Freely Moving Mice
Abraham Nixon, Guerin Delphine, Bhaukaurally Khaleel, Carleton Alan (2012), Similar Odor Discrimination Behavior in Head-Restrained and Freely Moving Mice, in plos one, e51789, 1-9.

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
summer school on Human olfaction Talk given at a conference Neural coding in the mammalian olfactory system 28.07.2013 Dresden, Germany Carleton Alan;
11th meeting of the French society for neuroscience Talk given at a conference Sparse vs. dense coding in the mouse olfactory bulb 21.05.2013 Lyon, France Carleton Alan;
invitation Individual talk Decorrelation of olfactory bulb output neurons enables odor discrimination in mice 04.04.2013 genève, Switzerland Carleton Alan;
FENS-IBRO training center: “Chemical Senses: Neurobiology and Behavior” Talk given at a conference Neural coding in the mammalian olfactory system 03.08.2012 Bertinoro, Italy Carleton Alan;


Self-organised

Title Date Place
FENS-IBRO imaging training center: “Imaging neural function” 22.08.2012 lausanne-genève, Switzerland

Communication with the public

Communication Title Media Place Year
Media relations: print media, online media Faculté olfactive: sommes-nous tous nez égaux? Tribune de Genève Western Switzerland 2014
New media (web, blogs, podcasts, news feeds etc.) How a wine taster gets a good nose International 2014
Media relations: radio, television le pouvoir des nez RSR Western Switzerland 2014
Media relations: print media, online media Comment les odeurs montent au cerveau Le Temps Western Switzerland 2013
Talks/events/exhibitions conférence "Les neurones dans le plat" dans le cadre de la semaine du cerveau Western Switzerland 2013
Media relations: radio, television le nez et le cerveau au service de l'odorat RSR Western Switzerland 2013
New media (web, blogs, podcasts, news feeds etc.) Sense of Smell: The Nose And the Brain Make Quite a Team... in Disconnection International 2013

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
119169 Maturation of adult-born interneurons and consequences on sensory perception 01.04.2008 SNSF Professorships
153410 Does ensemble decorrelation in the olfactory bulb predict odor discrimination behavior? 01.04.2014 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

How sensory processing is occurring into the brain and how to relate behavior to neuronal activities are key questions in modern neuroscience. Understanding the neural codes underlying brain function will be of great importance for future implementation of brain-machine interfaces. This research project proposes to study the cellular and network mechanisms controlling sensory perception. In particular, we would like to precise how sensory stimuli are coded by brain networks and how these representations may be influenced by experience or modulatory brain centers. In order to address these general questions, we propose to study olfaction as model sensory system. The olfactory system is central to the behavior of rodents (animal models that we study), is highly plastic and largely modulated by the neuromodulatory brain centers. This system has a relatively simple organization (only two synapses from sensory neurons to the cortex…), integrates cues and drive specific behavior. We propose to use a combination of genetic, electrophysiological, imaging and behavioral methods to study how odor information is processed in the central nervous system as it moves from the periphery to higher areas of the brain.
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