Hans Prydz Guest Lecture: Emre Yaksi
Emre Yaksi, Group Leader at the Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience/Centre for Neural Computation at NTNU, will give a talk titled: The role of glia-neuron interactions in epileptic seizure generation.
Professor Emre Yaksi. Photo: NTNU
Abstract: The role of glia-neuron interactions in epileptic seizure generation
Brain activity and connectivity alter drastically during epileptic seizures. Throughout this transition, brain networks shift from a balanced resting state to a hyperactive and hypersynchronous state, spreading across the brain. It is, however, less clear which mechanisms underlie these state transitions. To investigate the mechanisms underlying these state transitions, we used a combination of calcium imaging, electrophysiological recordings and optogenetic manipulations in a zebrafish model of epilepsy. By studying neuronal and glial activity across the zebrafish brain, we observed striking differences between these networks. During the preictal period, neurons displayed a small increase in synchronous activity only locally, while the entire glial network was highly active and strongly synchronized across large distances. We observed that the transition from a preictal state to a generalized seizure leads to an abrupt increase in neuronal activity and connectivity, which is accompanied by a strong functional coupling between glial and neuronal networks. Optogenetic activation of glia induced strong and transient burst of neuronal activity, emphasizing a potential role for glia-neuron connections in the generalization of epileptic seizures. We are now investigating the nature of glia-neuron interactions further to understand how these interactions are altered in epileptic brains.
For more information, visit the Yaksi Group webpage.