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In vivo study of GABAergic and glutamatergic neuronal populations of the periaqueductal gray matter in response to different kinds of threat

Grant number: 17/08668-1
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): September 11, 2017
Effective date (End): September 10, 2018
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Physiology - Physiology of Organs and Systems
Principal Investigator:Newton Sabino Canteras
Grantee:Fernando Midea Cuccovia Vasconcelos Reis
Supervisor: Avishek Adhikari
Host Institution: Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas (ICB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), United States  
Associated to the scholarship:15/23092-3 - Signaling pathways involved in fear memory to predatory threats, BP.PD


Recent technological advances open up causal investigation and specificity for the fast timescales of natural nervous system communication enabling an unprecedented level of hypothesis-testing precision. To understand how neural circuit activity controls behavior, experimental interventions should be performed with genetic, anatomical and temporal precision. Genetically encoded Ca2+ indicators (GECIs) made possible in vivo high-resolution cellular imaging of defined neural population. Using a head-mounted, miniature fluorescent microscope it is possible to record genetically defined neuronal activity to image in vivo calcium transients and to track the activation of the same neurons in mice as they freely explore distinct contexts across multiple days. Furthermore, due to the development of optogenetics, it is now possible to simultaneously control the activity of defined neuronal populations and to examine the consequences on behavior. Thus, the present study aims to perform a systematic tracking of cellular activity using a head-mounted, miniature fluorescent microscope to image in vivo calcium transients of neurons (glutamatergic and GABAergic) in the periaqueductal gray matter of mice and to identify possible correlations between the activity pattern of these networks and the behavioral outcome in different threatening situations: open spaces, bright lights, predator cues, aggressive conspecifics and tone-fear conditioned (foot-shock). Furthermore, using the information gained from these experiments, we aim to optogenetically activate and inhibit these different cell-types identified with calcium imaging in the threatening situations and evaluate possible behavioral responses. The combination of these powerful techniques might allow us to monitor and manipulate neural activity providing causal relationships between this and specific behaviors in mice.

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Scientific publications (8)
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
REIS, FERNANDO M. C. V.; LIU, JINHAN; SCHUETTE, PETER J.; LEE, JOHANNES Y.; MAESTA-PEREIRA, SANDRA; CHAKERIAN, MEGHMIK; WANG, WEISHENG; CANTERAS, NEWTON S.; KAO, JONATHAN C.; ADHIKARI, AVISHEK. Shared Dorsal Periaqueductal Gray Activation Patterns during Exposure to Innate and Conditioned Threats. JOURNAL OF NEUROSCIENCE, v. 41, n. 37, p. 5399-5420, . (15/23092-3, 14/05432-9, 17/08668-1)
REIS, FERNANDO MIDEA CUCCOVIA, V; NOVAES, LEONARDO SANTANA; SANTOS, NILTON BARRETO DOS; FERREIRA-ROSA, KELVIA CAROLINA; PERFETTO, JULIANO GENARO; BALDO, MARCUS VINICIUS C.; MUNHOZ, CAROLINA DEMARCHI; CANTERAS, NEWTON SABINO. Predator fear memory depends on glucocorticoid receptors and protein synthesis in the basolateral amygdala and ventral hippocampus. PSYCHONEUROENDOCRINOLOGY, v. 141, p. 11-pg., . (19/00908-9, 17/08668-1, 16/03572-3, 14/05432-9, 15/23092-3)
REIS, FERNANDO MCV; LEE, JOHANNES Y.; MAESTA-PEREIRA, SANDRA; SCHUETTE, PETER J.; CHAKERIAN, MEGHMIK; LIU, JINHAN; LA-VU, MIMI Q.; TOBIAS, BROOKE C.; IKEBARA, JULIANE M.; KIHARA, ALEXANDRE HIROAKI; et al. Dorsal periaqueductal gray ensembles represent approach and avoidance states. eLIFE, v. 10, . (17/08668-1, 14/05432-9, 19/17677-0)
SCHUETTE, PETER J.; IKEBARA, JULIANE M.; MAESTA-PEREIRA, SANDRA; TOROSSIAN, ANITA; SETHI, EKAYANA; KIHARA, ALEXANDRE H.; KAO, JONATHAN C.; REIS, FERNANDO M. C., V; ADHIKARI, AVISHEK. GABAergic CA1 neurons are more stable following context changes than glutamatergic cells. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, v. 12, n. 1, p. 18-pg., . (16/17329-3, 17/08668-1, 19/17677-0, 19/17892-8, 15/23092-3)
SCHUETTE, PETER J.; REIS, V, FERNANDO M. C.; MAESTA-PEREIRA, SANDRA; CHAKERIAN, MEGHMIK; TOROSSIAN, ANITA; BLAIR, GARRETT J.; WANG, WEISHENG; BLAIR, HUGH T.; FANSELOW, MICHAEL S.; KAO, JONATHAN C.; et al. Long-Term Characterization of Hippocampal Remapping during Contextual Fear Acquisition and Extinction. JOURNAL OF NEUROSCIENCE, v. 40, n. 43, p. 8329-8342, . (14/05432-9, 17/08668-1, 15/23092-3)
LA-VU, MIMI Q.; SETHI, EKAYANA; MAESTA-PEREIRA, SANDRA; SCHUETTE, PETER J.; TOBIAS, BROOKE C.; REIS, FERNANDO M. C., V; WANG, WEISHENG; TOROSSIAN, ANITA; BISHOP, AMY; LEONARD, SASKIA J.; et al. Sparse genetically defined neurons refine the canonical role of periaqueductal gray columnar organization. eLIFE, v. 11, p. 26-pg., . (15/23092-3, 17/08668-1)
WANG, WEISHENG; SCHUETTE, PETER J.; LA-VU, MIMI Q.; TOROSSIAN, ANITA; TOBIAS, BROOKE C.; CEKO, MARTA; KRAGEL, PHILIP A.; REIS, V, FERNANDO M. C.; JI, SHIYU; SEHGAL, MEGHA; et al. Dorsal premammillary projection to periaqueductal gray controls escape vigor from innate and conditioned threats. eLIFE, v. 10, . (17/08668-1, 15/23092-3, 14/05432-9)
ZHANG, ZHI; REIS, FERNANDO M. C. V.; HE, YANLIN; PARK, JAE W.; DIVITTORIO, JOHNATHON R.; SIVAKUMAR, NILLA; VAN VEEN, J. EDWARD; MAESTA-PEREIRA, SANDRA; SHUM, MICHAEL; NICHOLS, INDIA; et al. Estrogen-sensitive medial preoptic area neurons coordinate torpor in mice. NATURE COMMUNICATIONS, v. 11, n. 1, . (17/08668-1, 15/23092-3)

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