Browsing by Subject "ACTIVITY PATTERNS"

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  • Alitalo, Okko; Rantamäki, Tomi; Huhtala, Tuulia (2020)
    Autoradiography (ARG) is a high-resolution imaging method for localization of radiolabeled biomarkers in ex vivo specimen. ARG using 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG) method is used in to study drug actions on brain functional activity, as it provides results comparable to clinically used functional positron-emission tomography (PET). The requirement of slow analog detection methods and emerging advances in small animal PET imaging have, however, reduced the interest in ARG. In contrast to ARG, experimental animals need to be restrained or sedated/anesthetized for PET imaging, which strongly influence functional activity and thus complicate the interpretation of the results. Digital direct particle-counting ARG systems have gained attraction during the last decade to overcome the caveats of conventional ARG methods. Here we demonstrate that the well-established 2-DG imaging method can be adapted into use with contemporary digital detectors. This method readily and rapidly captures the characteristic effects of phencyclidine (5 mg/kg, i.p.), a dissociative agent targeting the NMDAR (N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor), on regional glucose utilization in the adult mouse brain. Pretreatment with antipsychotic drug clozapine (6 mg/kg, i.p.) essentially abolishes these effects of phencyclidine on brain functional activity. Digital ARG produces viable data for the regional analysis of functional activity in a fraction of time required for film development. These results support the use of digital ARG in preclinical drug research, where high throughput and response linearity are preferred and use of sedation/anesthesia has to be avoided.
  • Hyvärinen, Tanja; Hyysalo, Anu; Kapucu, Fikret Emre; Aarnos, Laura; Vinogradov, Andrey; Eglen, Stephen J.; Ylä-Outinen, Laura; Narkilahti, Susanna (2019)
    Human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC)-derived neurons provide exciting opportunities for in vitro modeling of neurological diseases and for advancing drug development and neurotoxicological studies. However, generating electrophysiologically mature neuronal networks from hPSCs has been challenging. Here, we report the differentiation of functionally active hPSC-derived cortical networks on defined laminin-521 substrate. We apply microelectrode array (MEA) measurements to assess network events and compare the activity development of hPSC-derived networks to that of widely used rat embryonic cortical cultures. In both of these networks, activity developed through a similar sequence of stages and time frames; however, the hPSC-derived networks showed unique patterns of bursting activity. The hPSC-derived networks developed synchronous activity, which involved glutamatergic and GABAergic inputs, recapitulating the classical cortical activity also observed in rodent counterparts. Principal component analysis (PCA) based on spike rates, network synchronization and burst features revealed the segregation of hPSC-derived and rat network recordings into different clusters, reflecting the species-specific and maturation state differences between the two networks. Overall, hPSC-derived neural cultures produced with a defined protocol generate cortical type network activity, which validates their applicability as a human-specific model for pharmacological studies and modeling network dysfunctions.
  • Wiedenhofer, Dominik; Smetschka, Barbara; Akenji, Lewis; Jalas, Mikko; Haberl, Helmut (2018)
    The 1.5 °C mitigation challenge for urban areas goes far beyond decarbonizing the cities’ energy supply and needs to enable and incentivize carbon-free everyday living. Reviewing recent literature, we find that dense and mixed urban form enables lower direct emissions from mobility and housing, while income is the major driver of total household carbon footprints; importantly, these effects are not linear. The available urban infrastructure, services and societal arrangements, for example on work, all influence how households use their time, which goods and services they consume in everyday life and their subsequent carbon footprints and potential rebound effects. We conclude that changes in household consumption, time use and urban form are crucial for a 1.5 °C future. We further identify a range of issues for which a time use perspective could open up new avenues for research and policy.
  • Penado, Andreia; Rocha, Ricardo; Sampaio, Marta; Gil, Vanessa; Carreira, Bruno M.; Rebelo, Rui (2015)
    The Selvagens gecko (Tarentola boettgeri bischoffi Joger, 1984) is a medium sized gecko endemic to the Selvagens archipelago, Madeira, Portugal. The biology of this gecko is poorly known and in this study we present the first evidence regarding its habitat use. In 2010 (spring and autumn) and 2011 (spring), we collected data on the characteristics of the habitat surrounding 168 rocks used by these geckos as retreat sites, as well as on 75 randomly selected rocks. We also recorded body measurements of the individuals caught under each rock. In both seasons retreat site occupancy was found to be related to rock area, with geckos being found mainly under large rocks. Interestingly, we found that in spring heavier males, in better body condition, occupied the largest rocks and larger geckos occupied rocks closer to creek beds. Our results shed some light upon the behavioural ecology of this nocturnally active ecto-therm, that spends the day under a retreat site: i) intraspecific competition may be an ecological factor prevalent in this species, since larger individuals occupy larger rocks, located in a presumably high quality micro-habitat; ii) the possibility of spring territoriality in males, that compete for good quality shelters.