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Cellular neuroscience is the study of neurons at the cellular level. It includes cell morphology and physiological properties such as membrane trafficking, synthesis and transport of proteins, and synaptic plasticity.
The growth of adult and paediatric brain tumours depends on a microenvironmental signalling pathway involving the activity-regulated secretion of neuroligin-3 (NLGN3) from normal neurons and oligodendrocyte precursor cells, highlighting the potential of NLGN3 as a therapeutic target.
Path-length-dependent axonal synapse sorting of local presynaptic axons
of excitatory neurons in the rat medial entorhinal cortex results in sequential
targeting of inhibitory and excitatory neurons, which are connected by a cellular
feedforward inhibition circuit.
Spinal cord injury can induce synaptic reorganization and remodeling in the brain. Here the authors study how severed distal axons signal back to the cell body to induce hyperexcitability, loss of inhibition and enhanced presynaptic release through netrin-1.
Loss of inhibition in a circuit in the primary somatosensory cortex that controls the activity of layer 5 neurons drives pain hypersensitivity. Restoring this inhibition resets the inhibitory–excitatory balance, producing analgesia.
Addictive substances hijack the reward system partly via synaptic plasticity onto dopamine neurons. Cadherins may contribute to cocaine-evoked adaptations, supporting the notion that drug addiction is a synaptic disease.