3 years ago

Transcriptional mapping of the primary somatosensory cortex upon sensory deprivation.

Celikel, Pistolic, Komuro, Provaznik, Kole, Tiesinga, Benes
Experience-dependent plasticity (EDP) is essential for anatomical and functional maturation of sensory circuits during development. Although the principal synaptic and circuit mechanisms of EDP are increasingly well studied experimentally and computationally, its molecular mechanisms remain largely elusive. EDP can be readily studied in the rodent barrel cortex, where each "barrel column" preferentially represents deflections of its own principal whisker. Depriving select whiskers while sparing their neighbours introduces competition between barrel columns, ultimately leading to weakening of intracortical, translaminar (i.e., cortical layer (L)4-to-L2/3) feed-forward excitatory projections in the deprived columns. The same synapses are potentiated in the neighbouring spared columns. These experience-dependent alterations of synaptic strength are thought to underlie somatosensory map plasticity. We used RNA sequencing in this model system to uncover cortical-column and -layer specific changes on the transcriptome level that are induced by altered sensory experience. Column- and layer-specific barrel cortical tissues were collected from juvenile mice with all whiskers intact and mice that received 11-12 days of long whisker (C-row) deprivation before high-quality RNA was purified and sequenced. The current dataset entails an average of 50 million paired-end reads per sample, 75 base pairs in length. On average, 90.15% of reads could be uniquely mapped to the mm10 reference mouse genome. The current data reveal the transcriptional changes in gene expression in the barrel cortex upon altered sensory experience in juvenile mice and will help to molecularly map the mechanisms of cortical plasticity.

Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1093/gigascience/gix081

DOI: 10.1093/gigascience/gix081

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