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Current Biology: CB | Page 2

Paul Rinnert, Maximilian E Kirschhock, Andreas Nieder
Birds are renowned for their excellent spatial cognition. Corvid songbirds, in particular, rely on explicit representation of spatial cues in memory when caching food and retrieving caches for later consumption. However, the neuronal correlates of flexible spatial memory abilities are largely unknown in birds. We therefore trained carrion crows (Corvus corone) on a spatial delayed-response task in which they had to maintain the variable location of a visual item for a few seconds in working memory. After the crows performed this task with high precision, we recorded single-cell activity from the associative endbrain area Nidopallium caudolaterale (NCL) in the behaving crows...
July 18, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Yin-Zi Ye, Liang Ma, Bao-Jun Sun, Teng Li, Yang Wang, Richard Shine, Wei-Guo Du
Sessile organisms with thermally sensitive developmental trajectories are at high risk from climate change. For example, oviparous reptiles with temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD) may experience strong (potentially disastrous) shifts in offspring sex ratio if reproducing females are unable to predict incubation conditions at the time of oviposition. How then have TSD reptile taxa persisted over previous periods of extreme climatic conditions? An ability of embryos to move within the egg to select optimal thermal regimes could buffer ambient extremes, but the feasibility of behavioral thermoregulation by embryos has come under strong challenge...
July 18, 2019: Current Biology: CB
David B Kastner, Yusuf Ozuysal, Georgia Panagiotakos, Stephen A Baccus
In response to a changing sensory environment, sensory systems adjust their neural code for a number of purposes, including an enhanced sensitivity for novel stimuli, prediction of sensory features, and the maintenance of sensitivity. Retinal sensitization is a form of short-term plasticity that elevates local sensitivity following strong, local, visual stimulation and has been shown to create a prediction of the presence of a nearby localized object. The neural mechanism that generates this elevation in sensitivity remains unknown...
July 17, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Sukanya Sengupta, Lauren B Crowe, Samantha You, Mary A Roberts, F Rob Jackson
Endogenous rhythmic behaviors are evolutionarily conserved and essential for life. In mammalian and invertebrate models, well-characterized neuronal circuits and evolutionarily conserved mechanisms regulate circadian behavior and sleep [1-4]. In Drosophila, neuronal populations located in multiple brain regions mediate arousal, sleep drive, and homeostasis (reviewed in [3, 5-7]). Similar to mammals [8], there is also evidence that fly glial cells modulate the neuronal circuits controlling rhythmic behaviors, including sleep [1]...
July 17, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Katherine A Harrisson, Michael J L Magrath, Jian D L Yen, Alexandra Pavlova, Neil Murray, Bruce Quin, Peter Menkhorst, Kimberly A Miller, Karina Cartwright, Paul Sunnucks
Reduced fitness as a result of inbreeding is a major threat facing many species of conservation concern [1-4]. However, few case studies for assessing the magnitude of inbreeding depression in the wild means that its relative importance as a risk factor for population persistence remains under-appreciated [5]. The increasing availability and affordability of genomic technologies provide new opportunities to address knowledge gaps around the magnitude and manifestation of inbreeding depression in wild populations [6-12]...
July 16, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Tadeusz Krassowski, Jacek Kominek, Xing-Xing Shen, Dana A Opulente, Xiaofan Zhou, Antonis Rokas, Chris Todd Hittinger, Kenneth H Wolfe
Cell type in budding yeasts is determined by the genotype at the mating-type (MAT) locus, but yeast species differ widely in their mating compatibility systems and life cycles. Among sexual yeasts, heterothallic species are those in which haploid strains fall into two distinct and stable mating types (MATa and MATα), whereas homothallic species are those that can switch mating types or that appear not to have distinct mating types [1, 2]. The evolutionary history of these mating compatibility systems is uncertain, particularly regarding the number and direction of transitions between homothallism and heterothallism, and regarding whether the process of mating-type switching had a single origin [3-5]...
July 16, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Shyam Srinivasan, Charles F Stevens
Identifying shared quantitative features of a neural circuit across species is important for 3 reasons. Often expressed in the form of power laws and called scaling relationships [1, 2], they reveal organizational principles of circuits, make insights gleaned from model systems widely applicable, and explain circuit performance and function, e.g., visual circuits [3, 4]. The visual circuit is topographic [5, 6], wherein retinal neurons target and activate predictable spatial loci in primary visual cortex. The brain, however, contains many circuits, where neuronal targets and activity are unpredictable and distributed throughout the circuit, e...
July 16, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Marie Lopez, Jeremy Choin, Martin Sikora, Katherine Siddle, Christine Harmant, Helio A Costa, Martin Silvert, Patrick Mouguiama-Daouda, Jean-Marie Hombert, Alain Froment, Sylvie Le Bomin, George H Perry, Luis B Barreiro, Carlos D Bustamante, Paul Verdu, Etienne Patin, Lluís Quintana-Murci
African rainforests support exceptionally high biodiversity and host the world's largest number of active hunter-gatherers [1-3]. The genetic history of African rainforest hunter-gatherers and neighboring farmers is characterized by an ancient divergence more than 100,000 years ago, together with recent population collapses and expansions, respectively [4-12]. While the demographic past of rainforest hunter-gatherers has been deeply characterized, important aspects of their history of genetic adaptation remain unclear...
July 13, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Ulrich Stern, Hemant Srivastava, Hsueh-Ling Chen, Farhan Mohammad, Adam Claridge-Chang, Chung-Hui Yang
The ability to use memory to return to specific locations for foraging is advantageous for survival. Although recent reports have demonstrated that the fruit flies Drosophila melanogaster are capable of visual cue-driven place learning and idiothetic path integration [1-4], the depth and flexibility of Drosophila's ability to solve spatial tasks and the underlying neural substrate and genetic basis have not been extensively explored. Here, we show that Drosophila can remember a reward-baited location through reinforcement learning and do so quickly and without requiring vision...
July 11, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Chao Ning, Chuan-Chao Wang, Shizhu Gao, Yang Yang, Xue Zhang, Xiyan Wu, Fan Zhang, Zhongzhi Nie, Yunpeng Tang, Martine Robbeets, Jian Ma, Johannes Krause, Yinqiu Cui
Recent studies of early Bronze Age human genomes revealed a massive population expansion by individuals-related to the Yamnaya culture, from the Pontic Caspian steppe into Western and Eastern Eurasia, likely accompanied by the spread of Indo-European languages [1-5]. The south eastern extent of this migration is currently not known. Modern-day human populations from the Xinjiang region in northwestern China show a complex population history, with genetic links to both Eastern and Western Eurasia [6-10]. However, due to the lack of ancient genomic data, it remains unclear which source populations contributed to the Xinjiang population and what was the timing and the number of admixture events...
July 10, 2019: Current Biology: CB
A Raouf Issa, João Picao-Osorio, Nuno Rito, M Eugenia Chiappe, Claudio R Alonso
Movement is the main output of the nervous system. It emerges during development to become a highly coordinated physiological process essential to survival and adaptation of the organism to the environment. Similar movements can be observed in morphologically distinct developmental stages of an organism, but it is currently unclear whether or not these movements have a common molecular cellular basis. Here we explore this problem in Drosophila, focusing on the roles played by the microRNA (miRNA) locus miR-iab4/8, which we previously showed to be essential for the normal corrective response displayed by the fruit fly larva when turned upside down (self-righting)...
July 10, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Praveen Kumar Allu, Jennine M Dawicki-McKenna, Trevor Van Eeuwen, Moriya Slavin, Merav Braitbard, Chen Xu, Nir Kalisman, Kenji Murakami, Ben E Black
Centromeric nucleosomes are at the interface of the chromosome and the kinetochore that connects to spindle microtubules in mitosis. The core centromeric nucleosome complex (CCNC) harbors the histone H3 variant, CENP-A, and its binding proteins, CENP-C (through its central domain; CD) and CENP-N (through its N-terminal domain; NT). CENP-C can engage nucleosomes through two domains: the CD and the CENP-C motif (CM). CENP-CCD is part of the CCNC by virtue of its high specificity for CENP-A nucleosomes and ability to stabilize CENP-A at the centromere...
July 8, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Clément Vinauger, Floris Van Breugel, Lauren T Locke, Kennedy K S Tobin, Michael H Dickinson, Adrienne L Fairhall, Omar S Akbari, Jeffrey A Riffell
Mosquitoes rely on the integration of multiple sensory cues, including olfactory, visual, and thermal stimuli, to detect, identify, and locate their hosts [1-4]. Although we increasingly know more about the role of chemosensory behaviors in mediating mosquito-host interactions [1], the role of visual cues is comparatively less studied [3], and how the combination of olfactory and visual information is integrated in the mosquito brain remains unknown. In the present study, we used a tethered-flight light-emitting diode (LED) arena, which allowed for quantitative control over the stimuli, and a control theoretic model to show that CO2 modulates mosquito steering responses toward vertical bars...
July 5, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Alice S Breda, Ora Hazak, Patrick Schultz, Pauline Anne, Moritz Graeff, Rüdiger Simon, Christian S Hardtke
Plants continuously elaborate their bodies through post-embryonic, reiterative organ formation by apical meristems [1]. Meristems harbor stem cells, which produce daughter cells that divide repeatedly before they differentiate. How transitions between stemness, proliferation, and differentiation are precisely coordinated is not well understood, but it is known that phytohormones as well as peptide signals play important roles [2-7]. For example, in Arabidopsis thaliana root meristems, developing protophloem sieve elements (PPSEs) express the secreted CLAVATA3/EMBRYO SURROUNDING REGION-RELATED 45 (CLE45) peptide and its cognate receptor, the leucine-rich repeat receptor kinase (LRR-RK) BARELY ANY MERISTEM 3 (BAM3)...
July 4, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Marco Gandolfo, Paul Edward Downing
Expectations about a visual event shape the way it is perceived [1-4]. For example, expectations induced by valid cues signaling aspects of a visual target can improve judgments about that target, relative to invalid cues [5, 6]. Such expectation effects are thought to arise via pre-activation of a template in neural populations that represent the target [7, 8] in early sensory areas [9] or in higher-level regions. For example, category cues ("face" or "house") modulate pre-target fMRI activity in associated category-selective brain regions [10, 11]...
July 2, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Geoffrey Terral, Arnau Busquets-Garcia, Marjorie Varilh, Svein Achicallende, Astrid Cannich, Luigi Bellocchio, Itziar Bonilla-Del Río, Federico Massa, Nagore Puente, Edgar Soria-Gomez, Pedro Grandes, Guillaume Ferreira, Giovanni Marsicano
The retrieval of odor-related memories shapes animal behavior. The anterior piriform cortex (aPC) is the largest part of the olfactory cortex, and it plays important roles in olfactory processing and memory. However, it is still unclear whether specific cellular mechanisms in the aPC control olfactory memory, depending on the appetitive or aversive nature of the stimuli involved. Cannabinoid-type 1 (CB1) receptors are present in the aPC (aPC-CB1), but their potential impact on olfactory memory was never explored...
July 2, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Soudabeh Imanikia, Neşem P Özbey, Christel Krueger, M Olivia Casanueva, Rebecca C Taylor
The unfolded protein response of the endoplasmic reticulum (UPRER ) is a crucial mediator of secretory pathway homeostasis. Expression of the spliced and active form of the UPRER transcription factor XBP-1, XBP-1s, in the nervous system triggers activation of the UPRER in the intestine of Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) through release of a secreted signal, leading to increased longevity. We find that expression of XBP-1s in the neurons or intestine of the worm strikingly improves proteostasis in multiple tissues, through increased clearance of toxic proteins...
July 2, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Katy Pilarzyk, Jennifer Klett, Edsel A Pena, Latarsha Porcher, Abigail J Smith, Michy P Kelly
Systems consolidation is a process by which memories initially require the hippocampus for recent long-term memory (LTM) but then become increasingly independent of the hippocampus and more dependent on the cortex for remote LTM. Here, we study the role of phosphodiesterase 11A4 (PDE11A4) in systems consolidation. PDE11A4, which degrades cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) and cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP), is preferentially expressed in neurons of CA1, the subiculum, and the adjacently connected amygdalohippocampal region...
July 2, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Rick Wassing, Oti Lakbila-Kamal, Jennifer R Ramautar, Diederick Stoffers, Frans Schalkwijk, Eus J W Van Someren
Animal studies show that insufficient silencing of the locus coeruleus (LC) during REM sleep impairs sleep-related brain plasticity. Restless REM sleep, a characteristic of several psychiatric disorders, likely reflects insufficient LC silencing. We investigated whether endogenous REM sleep interruptions interfere with overnight reorganization of limbic circuits in human volunteers with a wide range of insomnia severity, from no insomnia complaints to fulfilling community-sample criteria for insomnia disorder...
July 2, 2019: Current Biology: CB
Lei Yang, Valentina Perrera, Eleftheria Saplaoura, Federico Apelt, Mathieu Bahin, Amira Kramdi, Justyna Olas, Bernd Mueller-Roeber, Ewelina Sokolowska, Wenna Zhang, Runsheng Li, Nicolas Pitzalis, Manfred Heinlein, Shoudong Zhang, Auguste Genovesio, Vincent Colot, Friedrich Kragler
In plants, transcripts move to distant body parts to potentially act as systemic signals regulating development and growth. Thousands of messenger RNAs (mRNAs) are transported across graft junctions via the phloem to distinct plant parts. Little is known regarding features, structural motifs, and potential base modifications of transported transcripts and how these may affect their mobility. We identified Arabidopsis thaliana mRNAs harboring the modified base 5-methylcytosine (m5 C) and found that these are significantly enriched in mRNAs previously described as mobile, moving over graft junctions to distinct plant parts...
June 29, 2019: Current Biology: CB
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