FY2010 Annual Report

Optical Neuroimaging Unit

Principal Investigator: Bernd Kuhn
Research Theme: Imaging neuronal activity in behaving animals




The Optical Neuroimaging Unit was established in September 2010. The focus of research will be to find correlates of neuronal activity and animal behavior.

1. Staff

  • Dr. Khurshida Kumkum Hossain, Research Assistant
  • Ms. Hiroko Chinone, Research Administrator / Secretary

2. Collaborations

Theme: Two-photon imaging in the lateral geniculate nucleus

  • Type of collaboration: Joint research
  • Researchers:
    • Dr. Sigita Augustinaite, University of Oslo, Norway
    • Prof. Dr. Paul Heggelund, University of Oslo, Norway

Theme: Combinatorial genetic approach for cell type specific expression of fluorescent calcium indicator proteins 

  • Type of collaboration: Joint research
  • Researchers:
    • Prof. Dr. Ilker Ozden, Brown University, U.S.A.
    • Yulia Lampi, Princeton University, U.S.A.
    • Dr. Mazahir T. Hasan, Max-Planck-Institute for Medical Research, Germany
    • Prof. Dr. Samuel S.-H. Wang, Princeton University, U.S.A

3. Activities and Findings

3.1 Setting up the laboratory and the two-photon microscope

During the first 4 month of the newly established unit a laboratory room within the animal facility was prepared. The integration of the laboratory into the animal facility will allow chronic imagaing over weeks and at the same time guaranty highest animal welfare.

After the completion of the room optical tables and equipment like lasers and the two-photon microscope were delivered and installed. The setup is expected to be completed by September 2011.

3.2 Two-photon imaging in the lateral geniculate nucleus

In Oslo a new two-photon microscope was installed and is now ready for slice imaging and simultaneous electrical recording. Also first labeling experiments of neurons were successful.

3.3 Imaging neuronal activity in cerebellar cortex with genetically encoded indicators

Cell type specific labeling of neurons with genetically encoded indicators at high expression level is crucial not only for recording of neuronal network activity but optogenetics in general. We develop methods how this can be achieved in the cerebellum and use these new methods for in vivo imaging with two-photon microscopy. 


4. Publications

4.1 Journals

  1. Granstedt, A. E., Kuhn, B., Wang, S. S. & Enquist, L. W. Calcium imaging of neuronal circuits in vivo using a circuit-tracing pseudorabies virus. Cold Spring Harb Protoc 2010, pdb prot5410, doi:2010/4/pdb.prot5410 [pii] 10.1101/pdb.prot5410 (2010).

4.2 Books and other one-time publications

Nothing to report.

4.3 Oral and Poster Presentations

  1. X.R. Sun, Y. L., B. Kuhn, S.S. Lin, J. Nakai, S.S.-H. Wang  Quantitative determination of calcium indicator protein brightness relative to EGFP, Society for Neuroscience Meeting, USA, Nov 13-17, 2010
  2. B. Kuhn, I. O., Y. Lampi, M.T. Hasan, S.S.-H. Wang Combinatorial genetic approach for cell type specific expression of fluorescent calcium indicator proteins in the cerebellum of awake behaving mice, Society for Neuroscience Meeting, USA, Nov 13-17, 2010

5. Intellectual Property Rights and Other Specific Achievements

Nothing to report. 

6. Meetings and Events

6.1 Research visit

  • Date: October 31 - November 5, 2010 and March 1-7, 2011
  • Venue: University of Oslo - Labeling of cortical neurons giving feedback to LGN
  • Other remarks: Developed methods to label neurons with DiI in vivo

6.2 Research visit

  • Date: October 30, 2010
  • Venue: Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry - symposium on Electrical and Optical 
  • Interfacing of Nerve Cells and Brain

7. Others

7.1 Public Outreach

To support local science education and to stimulate interest in science Dr. B. Kuhn gave a lecture at the Junior High School of Onna Village in December 2010. He talked about his scientific career and research.

Dr. B. Kuhn also gave an interview to a local TV station to increase awarness of OIST in Okinawa.