Structural Alterations in a Dendrite

Structural Alterations in a Dendrite

Jacque Pak Kan Ip, José Zepeda, Katya Tsimring, Hayley Wing Sum Tsang, Mriganka Sur

Picower Institute for Learning and Memory, MIT Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences

Learning and memory can be seen at the most basic unit of neuronal communication, namely dendritic spines, which are small protrusions that typically receive input from other neurons. This image shows a neuronal process, dendrite, in the mouse primary visual cortex, tracked across four days. The different colors represent daily spine activities, which alter and are sustained as represented by overlapping colors.

Our research goal is to use the mouse model to study how visual experience shapes structural and functional changes at the level of dendritic spines in vivo, in order to understand how experience shapes the human cortical circuit.

long thin dendrite oriented diagonally through the image

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