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Motor Neurons: Neurons which activate muscle cells.

An Introduction to Motor Control

JoVE 5422

Motor control involves integration and processing of sensory information by our nervous system, followed by a response through our skeletal system to perform a voluntary or involuntary action. It is vital to understand how our neuroskeletal system controls motor behavior in order to evaluate injuries pertaining to general movement, reflexes, and coordination. An improved understanding of motor control will help behavioral neuroscientists in developing useful tools to treat motor disorders, such as Parkinson's or Huntington's disease. This video briefly reviews the neuroanatomical structures and connections that play a major role in controlling motion. Fundamental questions currently being asked in the field of motor control are introduced, followed by some of the methods being employed to answer those questions. Lastly, the application sections reviews a few specific experiments conducted in neuroscience labs interested in studying this phenomenon.


 Behavioral Science

Explant Culture of Neural Tissue

JoVE 5209

The intricate structure of the vertebrate nervous system arises from a complex series of events involving cell differentiation, cell migration, and changes in cell morphology. Studying these processes is essential to our understanding of nervous system function as well as our ability to diagnose and treat disorders that result from abnormal development. However, neural tissues are relatively inaccessible for experimental manipulations, especially in embryonic mammals. As a result, many scientists take advantage of explant culture in order to study neurodevelopmental processes in an “organotypic” environment, meaning that the tissue is removed from the organism but its complex cellular architecture is maintained. Generally, explant cultures are created by careful dissection of neural tissue that is then submerged in carefully designed growth media and cultured in vitro. This video will first provide a brief overview of neural explant culture, including its advantages over other in vitro methods and important considerations for maintaining healthy tissue. Next, a general protocol will be provided for setting up an explant culture from embryonic mouse brain, outlining the isolation of embryos from the mother and dissection of the brain. The presentation also includes an overview of slice culture


 Neuroscience

Motor Maps

JoVE 10175

Source: Laboratories of Jonas T. Kaplan and Sarah I. Gimbel—University of Southern California

One principle of brain organization is the topographic mapping of information. Especially in sensory and motor cortices, adjacent regions of the brain tend to represent information from adjacent parts of the body, resulting in maps of the body expressed on the surface of the brain. The primary sensory and motor maps in the brain surround a prominent sulcus known as the central sulcus. The cortex anterior to the central sulcus is known as the precentral gyrus and contains the primary motor cortex, while the cortex posterior to the central sulcus is known as the postcentral gyrus and contains the primary sensory cortex (Figure 1). Figure 1: Sensory and motor maps around the central sulcus. The primary motor cortex, which contains a motor map of the body's effectors, is anterior to the central sulcus, in the precentral gyrus of the frontal lobe. The primary somesthetic (sensory) cortex, which receives touch, pain, and temperature information from the external parts of the body, is located posterior to the central sulcus, in the postcentral gyrus of the parietal lobe.

Embryonic Stem Cell Culture and Differentiation

JoVE 5332

Culturing embryonic stem (ES) cells requires conditions that maintain these cells in an undifferentiated state to preserve their capacity for self-renewal and pluripotency. Stem cell biologists are continuously optimizing methods to improve the efficiency of ES cell culture, and are simultaneously trying to direct the differentiation of ES cells into specific cell types that could be used in regenerative medicine. This video describes the basic principles of ES cell culture, and demonstrates a general protocol to grow and passage ES cells. We also take a closer look at the hanging drop method, which is used to differentiate ES cells. Finally, this video will describe a few applications of ES cell culture and differentiation techniques, including a method used to generate functional heart muscle cells in vitro.


 Developmental Biology

An Introduction to Stem Cell Biology

JoVE 5331

Cells that can differentiate into a variety of cell types, known as stem cells, are at the center of one of the most exciting fields of science today. Stem cell biologists are working to understand the basic mechanisms that regulate how these cells function. These researchers are also interested in harnessing the remarkable potential of stem cells to treat human diseases.

Here, JoVE presents an introduction to the captivating world of stem cell biology. We begin with a timeline of landmark studies, from the first experimental evidence for hematopoietic stem cells in the 1960s, to more recent breakthroughs like induced pluripotent stem cells. Next, key questions about stem cell biology are introduced, for example: How do these cells maintain their unique ability to undergo self-renewal? This is followed by a discussion of some prominent methods used to answer these questions. Finally, several experiments are presented to demonstrate the use of stem cells in regenerative medicine.


 Developmental Biology

Novel Atomic Force Microscopy Based Biopanning for Isolation of Morphology Specific Reagents against TDP-43 Variants in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

1School for Engineering of Matter, Transport and Energy, Arizona State University, 2Department of Neurology, Georgetown University Medical Center, 3Department of Pathology, Georgetown University Medical Center

JoVE 52584


 Bioengineering

The Neuromuscular Junction: Measuring Synapse Size, Fragmentation and Changes in Synaptic Protein Density Using Confocal Fluorescence Microscopy

1Physiology and Bosch Institute, University of Sydney, 2Motor Neuron Disease Research Group, Australian School of Advanced Medicine, Macquarie University, 3Advanced Microscopy Facility, Bosch Institute, University of Sydney

JoVE 52220


 Neuroscience

Visualization of Motor Axon Navigation and Quantification of Axon Arborization In Mouse Embryos Using Light Sheet Fluorescence Microscopy

1Molecular and Cell Biology, Taiwan International Graduate Program, Academia Sinica and Graduate Institute of Life Sciences, National Defense Medical Center, 2Institute of Molecular Biology, Academia Sinica, 3Institute of Biotechnology, College of Bio-Resources and Agriculture, National Taiwan University

JoVE 57546


 Neuroscience

Paradigms of Lower Extremity Electrical Stimulation Training After Spinal Cord Injury

1Spinal Cord Injury and Disorders Service, Hunter Holmes McGuire VAMC, 2Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Virginia Commonwealth University, 3Deceased, Department of Kinesiology, The University of Georgia, 4Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center

JoVE 57000


 Behavior

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