Browse Articles

  • Brief Communication |

    Optogenetics has revolutionized neuroscience, but intracranial illumination can cause off-target effects. Owen et al. identify a temperature-sensitive potassium current that modulates neuronal activity and behavior independent of opsin expression.

    • Scott F. Owen
    • , Max H. Liu
    •  & Anatol C. Kreitzer
  • Article |

    The study reports a genome-wide significant locus for cannabis use disorder, replicating in an independent cohort, and implicates CHRNA2, which encodes an acetylcholine receptor subunit, in the disorder by analyses of genetically regulated gene expression.

    • Ditte Demontis
    • , Veera Manikandan Rajagopal
    • , Thorgeir E. Thorgeirsson
    • , Thomas D. Als
    • , Jakob Grove
    • , Kalle Leppälä
    • , Daniel F. Gudbjartsson
    • , Jonatan Pallesen
    • , Carsten Hjorthøj
    • , Gunnar W. Reginsson
    • , Thorarinn Tyrfingsson
    • , Valgerdur Runarsdottir
    • , Per Qvist
    • , Jane Hvarregaard Christensen
    • , Jonas Bybjerg-Grauholm
    • , Marie Bækvad-Hansen
    • , Laura M. Huckins
    • , Eli A. Stahl
    • , Allan Timmermann
    • , Esben Agerbo
    • , David M. Hougaard
    • , Thomas Werge
    • , Ole Mors
    • , Preben Bo Mortensen
    • , Merete Nordentoft
    • , Mark J. Daly
    • , Hreinn Stefansson
    • , Kari Stefansson
    • , Mette Nyegaard
    •  & Anders D. Børglum
  • Article |

    Microglia are resident immune cells of the CNS. Here the authors show that neurons communicate to microglia via activity-dependent fractalkine and ADAM10 signaling to induce removal of synapses in the brain after sensory loss.

    • Georgia Gunner
    • , Lucas Cheadle
    • , Kasey M. Johnson
    • , Pinar Ayata
    • , Ana Badimon
    • , Erica Mondo
    • , M. Aurel Nagy
    • , Liwang Liu
    • , Shane M. Bemiller
    • , Ki-Wook Kim
    • , Sergio A. Lira
    • , Bruce T. Lamb
    • , Andrew R. Tapper
    • , Richard M. Ransohoff
    • , Michael E. Greenberg
    • , Anne Schaefer
    •  & Dorothy P. Schafer
  • Brief Communication |

    The authors show that decreased synaptic efficacy onto raphe-projecting lateral habenula neurons supports opiate withdrawal-induced sociability deficits, and they demonstrate a role for TNF-α signaling in this process.

    • Kristina Valentinova
    • , Anna Tchenio
    • , Massimo Trusel
    • , Joseph A. Clerke
    • , Arnaud L. Lalive
    • , Stamatina Tzanoulinou
    • , Alessandro Matera
    • , Imane Moutkine
    • , Luc Maroteaux
    • , Rosa C. Paolicelli
    • , Andrea Volterra
    • , Camilla Bellone
    •  & Manuel Mameli
  • News & Views |

    A new study by Owen et al. shows that widely used optogenetic light delivery can heat brain tissue and produce changes in neural activity and behavior in the absence of opsins. How will this finding influence experimental design in the optical age of neuroscience?

    • Daniel F. Cardozo Pinto
    •  & Stephan Lammel
  • Resource |

    Gouwens et al. established a morpho-electrical taxonomy of cell types for the mouse visual cortex via unsupervised clustering analysis of multiple quantitative features from 1,938 neurons available online at the Allen Cell Types Database.

    • Nathan W. Gouwens
    • , Staci A. Sorensen
    • , Jim Berg
    • , Changkyu Lee
    • , Tim Jarsky
    • , Jonathan Ting
    • , Susan M. Sunkin
    • , David Feng
    • , Costas A. Anastassiou
    • , Eliza Barkan
    • , Kris Bickley
    • , Nicole Blesie
    • , Thomas Braun
    • , Krissy Brouner
    • , Agata Budzillo
    • , Shiella Caldejon
    • , Tamara Casper
    • , Dan Castelli
    • , Peter Chong
    • , Kirsten Crichton
    • , Christine Cuhaciyan
    • , Tanya L. Daigle
    • , Rachel Dalley
    • , Nick Dee
    • , Tsega Desta
    • , Song-Lin Ding
    • , Samuel Dingman
    • , Alyse Doperalski
    • , Nadezhda Dotson
    • , Tom Egdorf
    • , Michael Fisher
    • , Rebecca A. de Frates
    • , Emma Garren
    • , Marissa Garwood
    • , Amanda Gary
    • , Nathalie Gaudreault
    • , Keith Godfrey
    • , Melissa Gorham
    • , Hong Gu
    • , Caroline Habel
    • , Kristen Hadley
    • , James Harrington
    • , Julie A. Harris
    • , Alex Henry
    • , DiJon Hill
    • , Sam Josephsen
    • , Sara Kebede
    • , Lisa Kim
    • , Matthew Kroll
    • , Brian Lee
    • , Tracy Lemon
    • , Katherine E. Link
    • , Xiaoxiao Liu
    • , Brian Long
    • , Rusty Mann
    • , Medea McGraw
    • , Stefan Mihalas
    • , Alice Mukora
    • , Gabe J. Murphy
    • , Lindsay Ng
    • , Kiet Ngo
    • , Thuc Nghi Nguyen
    • , Philip R. Nicovich
    • , Aaron Oldre
    • , Daniel Park
    • , Sheana Parry
    • , Jed Perkins
    • , Lydia Potekhina
    • , David Reid
    • , Miranda Robertson
    • , David Sandman
    • , Martin Schroedter
    • , Cliff Slaughterbeck
    • , Gilberto Soler-Llavina
    • , Josef Sulc
    • , Aaron Szafer
    • , Bosiljka Tasic
    • , Naz Taskin
    • , Corinne Teeter
    • , Nivretta Thatra
    • , Herman Tung
    • , Wayne Wakeman
    • , Grace Williams
    • , Rob Young
    • , Zhi Zhou
    • , Colin Farrell
    • , Hanchuan Peng
    • , Michael J. Hawrylycz
    • , Ed Lein
    • , Lydia Ng
    • , Anton Arkhipov
    • , Amy Bernard
    • , John W. Phillips
    • , Hongkui Zeng
    •  & Christof Koch
  • Author Correction |

    • Maisa C. Takenaka
    • , Galina Gabriely
    • , Veit Rothhammer
    • , Ivan D. Mascanfroni
    • , Michael A. Wheeler
    • , Chun-Cheih Chao
    • , Cristina Gutiérrez-Vázquez
    • , Jessica Kenison
    • , Emily C. Tjon
    • , Andreia Barroso
    • , Tyler Vandeventer
    • , Kalil Alves de Lima
    • , Sonja Rothweiler
    • , Lior Mayo
    • , Soufiene Ghannam
    • , Stephanie Zandee
    • , Luke Healy
    • , David Sherr
    • , Mauricio F. Farez
    • , Alexandre Prat
    • , Jack Antel
    • , David A. Reardon
    • , Hailei Zhang
    • , Simon C. Robson
    • , Gad Getz
    • , Howard L. Weiner
    •  & Francisco J. Quintana
  • Brief Communication |

    Lloyd et al. find that regeneration of CNS myelin requires death of proinflammatory microglia followed by repopulation to a pro-regenerative state, revealing new therapeutic targets for neurodegenerative disease.

    • Amy F. Lloyd
    • , Claire L. Davies
    • , Rebecca K. Holloway
    • , Yasmine Labrak
    • , Graeme Ireland
    • , Dario Carradori
    • , Alessandra Dillenburg
    • , Eva Borger
    • , Daniel Soong
    • , Jill C. Richardson
    • , Tanja Kuhlmann
    • , Anna Williams
    • , Jeffrey W. Pollard
    • , Anne des Rieux
    • , Josef Priller
    •  & Veronique E. Miron
  • Article |

    The role of persistent spiking activity in working memory has recently come under debate. Here the authors use biologically realistic recurrent neural networks to explain why the strength of persistent activity can vary markedly between tasks.

    • Nicolas Y. Masse
    • , Guangyu R. Yang
    • , H. Francis Song
    • , Xiao-Jing Wang
    •  & David J. Freedman
  • Author Correction |

    • Joëlle A. Pasman
    • , Karin J. H. Verweij
    • , Zachary Gerring
    • , Sven Stringer
    • , Sandra Sanchez-Roige
    • , Jorien L. Treur
    • , Abdel Abdellaoui
    • , Michel G. Nivard
    • , Bart M. L. Baselmans
    • , Jue-Sheng Ong
    • , Hill F. Ip
    • , Matthijs D. van der Zee
    • , Meike Bartels
    • , Felix R. Day
    • , Pierre Fontanillas
    • , Sarah L. Elson
    • , Harriet de Wit
    • , Lea K. Davis
    • , James MacKillop
    • , Jaime L. Derringer
    • , Susan J. T. Branje
    • , Catharina A. Hartman
    • , Andrew C. Heath
    • , Pol A. C. van Lier
    • , Pamela A. F. Madden
    • , Reedik Mägi
    • , Wim Meeus
    • , Grant W. Montgomery
    • , A. J. Oldehinkel
    • , Zdenka Pausova
    • , Josep A. Ramos-Quiroga
    • , Tomas Paus
    • , Marta Ribases
    • , Jaakko Kaprio
    • , Marco P. M. Boks
    • , Jordana T. Bell
    • , Tim D. Spector
    • , Joel Gelernter
    • , Dorret I. Boomsma
    • , Nicholas G. Martin
    • , Stuart MacGregor
    • , John R. B. Perry
    • , Abraham A. Palmer
    • , Danielle Posthuma
    • , Marcus R. Munafò
    • , Nathan A. Gillespie
    • , Eske M. Derks
    •  & Jacqueline M. Vink
  • Article |

    Namboodiri, Otis et al. reveal that orbitofrontal cortex acquires and maintains a long-term memory of cue–reward associations to guide multiple aspects of behavioral learning, and that it routes select information to a downstream learning center.

    • Vijay Mohan K. Namboodiri
    • , James M. Otis
    • , Kay van Heeswijk
    • , Elisa S. Voets
    • , Rizk A. Alghorazi
    • , Jose Rodriguez-Romaguera
    • , Stefan Mihalas
    •  & Garret D. Stuber
  • Article |

    Different body parts must be coordinated to perform skills. Lemke et al. report that distinct patterns of brain activity emerge during learning related to each body part and conclude that such patterns are refined independently yet function together.

    • Stefan M. Lemke
    • , Dhakshin S. Ramanathan
    • , Ling Guo
    • , Seok Joon Won
    •  & Karunesh Ganguly
  • News & Views |

    Selecting the most rewarding action and performing it accurately are two separable brain functions that are thought to rely upon different neural systems. New evidence suggests that the cerebellum could learn to do both.

    • Javier F. Medina
  • Article |

    Sensory detection of prey triggers hunting actions in predators. Zhao et al. show that the zona incerta integrates prey-related multisensory signals and induces a motivational drive to guide prey detection and promote predatory attack.

    • Zheng-dong Zhao
    • , Zongming Chen
    • , Xinkuan Xiang
    • , Mengna Hu
    • , Hengchang Xie
    • , Xiaoning Jia
    • , Fang Cai
    • , Yuting Cui
    • , Zijun Chen
    • , Lechen Qian
    • , Jiashu Liu
    • , Congping Shang
    • , Yiqing Yang
    • , Xinyan Ni
    • , Wenzhi Sun
    • , Ji Hu
    • , Peng Cao
    • , Haohong Li
    •  & Wei L. Shen
  • Article |

    How does the mammalian brain trigger prey-capture behavior? Shang et al. identify a subcortical circuit that transforms prey-derived sensory cues into predatory attack signals during hunting behavior in mice.

    • Congping Shang
    • , Aixue Liu
    • , Dapeng Li
    • , Zhiyong Xie
    • , Zijun Chen
    • , Meizhu Huang
    • , Yang Li
    • , Yi Wang
    • , Wei L. Shen
    •  & Peng Cao
  • News & Views |

    How to know when to hunt or when to lay low? Surprisingly, new research shows that activity in the medial zona incerta specifically initiates predation in the mouse. The medial zona incerta integrates visual motion and tactile stimulation sent from the intermediate superior colliculus to motivate hunting.

    • Nicole Procacci
    •  & Jennifer L. Hoy
  • Article |

    Synapses of retinal bipolar cells encode contrast through changes in both the frequency and amplitude of release events. The amplitude code contains symbols up to 11 vesicle equivalents and increases the efficiency of information transmission.

    • Ben James
    • , Léa Darnet
    • , José Moya-Díaz
    • , Sofie-Helene Seibel
    •  & Leon Lagnado
  • Article |

    The (G4C2)30+ repeat expansion is the most prominent mutation in familial FTD and ALS. Here the PAF1 complex is identified as a transcriptional regulator of this unique mutation. Data from FTD tissue positive for the C9orf72 mutation support the relevance of this complex in disease.

    • Lindsey D. Goodman
    • , Mercedes Prudencio
    • , Nicholas J. Kramer
    • , Luis F. Martinez-Ramirez
    • , Ananth R. Srinivasan
    • , Matthews Lan
    • , Michael J. Parisi
    • , Yongqing Zhu
    • , Jeannie Chew
    • , Casey N. Cook
    • , Amit Berson
    • , Aaron D. Gitler
    • , Leonard Petrucelli
    •  & Nancy M. Bonini
  • Article |

    Ziegler, Hauser et al. report brain-wide, myelin-related microstructural growth from adolescence to adulthood and show that this longitudinal growth is reduced in the presence of compulsivity and impulsivity traits.

    • Gabriel Ziegler
    • , Tobias U. Hauser
    • , Michael Moutoussis
    • , Edward T. Bullmore
    • , Ian M. Goodyer
    • , Peter Fonagy
    • , Peter B. Jones
    • , Ulman Lindenberger
    •  & Raymond J. Dolan
  • Article |

    Aydin et al. show that the proneural factors Ascl1 and Neurog2 bind to largely non-overlapping sites in the genome, establishing distinct chromatin landscapes that shape the activity of downstream factors during neuronal fate specification.

    • Begüm Aydin
    • , Akshay Kakumanu
    • , Mary Rossillo
    • , Mireia Moreno-Estellés
    • , Görkem Garipler
    • , Niels Ringstad
    • , Nuria Flames
    • , Shaun Mahony
    •  & Esteban O. Mazzoni
  • Article |

    The authors generated a mouse model of C9ORF72-related amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia based on dipeptide repeat proteins and report that defects in mitochondria may contribute to disease pathogenesis.

    • So Yoen Choi
    • , Rodrigo Lopez-Gonzalez
    • , Gopinath Krishnan
    • , Hannah L. Phillips
    • , Alissa Nana Li
    • , William W. Seeley
    • , Wei-Dong Yao
    • , Sandra Almeida
    •  & Fen-Biao Gao
  • Resource |

    Van Hove et al. reveal the diversity of macrophages at the brain’s border regions via single-cell analysis and fate-mapping. This also identified a microglial subset at the surface of the choroid plexus, in direct contact with cerebrospinal fluid.

    • Hannah Van Hove
    • , Liesbet Martens
    • , Isabelle Scheyltjens
    • , Karen De Vlaminck
    • , Ana Rita Pombo Antunes
    • , Sofie De Prijck
    • , Niels Vandamme
    • , Sebastiaan De Schepper
    • , Gert Van Isterdael
    • , Charlotte L. Scott
    • , Jeroen Aerts
    • , Geert Berx
    • , Guy E. Boeckxstaens
    • , Roosmarijn E. Vandenbroucke
    • , Lars Vereecke
    • , Diederik Moechars
    • , Martin Guilliams
    • , Jo A. Van Ginderachter
    • , Yvan Saeys
    •  & Kiavash Movahedi
  • Article |

    Lu et al. report a pathway that reprograms protein quality control under stress. Identified in a Caenorhabditis elegans screen and characterized in mammalian systems, L3MBTL1 and its partner SETD8 modulate proteotoxicity and are deregulated in patients with ALS/FTD.

    • Jiayin Lu
    • , Goran Periz
    • , Yu-Ning Lu
    • , Qing Tang
    • , Yang Liu
    • , Tao Zhang
    • , Yajas Shah
    • , Ravi Thombre
    • , Reham Aljumaah
    • , Weixin Li
    • , Jelena Mojsilovic-Petrovic
    • , Yon Ji
    • , Kenji Johnson
    • , Robert Kalb
    •  & Jiou Wang
  • News & Views |

    The CNS harbors distinct subsets of macrophages, including parenchymal microglia and macrophages residing at border regions (for example, meninges and the choroid plexus). In this issue of Nature Neuroscience, Van Hove and colleagues elegantly demonstrate the diversity and dynamics of non-parenchymal macrophages and identify a unique microglial subtype within the choroid plexus.

    • Sebastian G. Utz
    •  & Melanie Greter
  • News & Views |

    Using light-activated ion channels to stimulate sensory and motivational pathways, Vetere and colleagues constructed fully artificial memories in mice. Mice preferred or avoided an odor they had never smelled before, depending on the pattern of stimulation.

    • Mark G. Baxter
    •  & Nicholas A. Upright
  • Article |

    Pairing an odor conditioned stimulus (CS) with an unconditioned stimulus (US) induces memory formation. Vetere et al. replace the real CS and US with direct optogenetic stimulation of the brain and create a fully artificial odor memory in mice.

    • Gisella Vetere
    • , Lina M. Tran
    • , Sara Moberg
    • , Patrick E. Steadman
    • , Leonardo Restivo
    • , Filomene G. Morrison
    • , Kerry J. Ressler
    • , Sheena A. Josselyn
    •  & Paul W. Frankland
  • Article |

    The brain predicts future sensory input. The authors hypothesize that the visual system achieves this by straightening the temporal trajectories of natural videos, and they provide evidence using human perceptual experiments and computational modeling.

    • Olivier J. Hénaff
    • , Robbe L. T. Goris
    •  & Eero P. Simoncelli
  • Article |

    Dong, Wang et al. uncover a circuit linking Glu+cingulate inputs→PV+ neurons in the limbic thalamic reticular nucleus→intermediodorsal thalamic nucleus, and show that this cortico-intrathalamic circuit is a component of the fear circuitry and controls flight behavior in mice.

    • Ping Dong
    • , Hao Wang
    • , Xiao-Fan Shen
    • , Ping Jiang
    • , Xu-Tao Zhu
    • , Yue Li
    • , Jia-Hao Gao
    • , Shan Lin
    • , Yue Huang
    • , Xiao-Bin He
    • , Fu-Qiang Xu
    • , Shumin Duan
    • , Hong Lian
    • , Hao Wang
    • , Jiadong Chen
    •  & Xiao-Ming Li
  • News & Views |

    DNA damage or cellular stresses can induce senescence, and increased senescence with aging contributes to age-associated tissue damage, inflammation and disease. Zheng and colleagues report increased senescent oligodendrocyte progenitor cells around amyloid plaques. Therapeutically eliminating these senescent cells may influence the onset and progression of Alzheimer’s disease pathology.

    • David Holtzman
    •  & Jason Ulrich
  • Article |

    Barak et al. show that deletion of Gtf2i, a gene deleted in Williams syndrome, from the excitatory neurons of the forebrain reduced myelin thickness and axonal conduction. Rescuing myelination with a US Food and Drug Administration-approved drug restored normal behavior.

    • Boaz Barak
    • , Zicong Zhang
    • , Yuanyuan Liu
    • , Ariel Nir
    • , Sari S. Trangle
    • , Michaela Ennis
    • , Kirsten M. Levandowski
    • , Dongqing Wang
    • , Kathleen Quast
    • , Gabriella L. Boulting
    • , Yi Li
    • , Dashzeveg Bayarsaihan
    • , Zhigang He
    •  & Guoping Feng
  • News & Views |

    Robust conclusions require rigorous statistics. In 2009 a seminal paper described the dangers and prevalence of double-dipping in neuroscience. Ten years on, I consider progress toward statistical rigor in neuroimaging.

    • Katherine S. Button
  • News & Views |

    A new study reveals an unexpected mechanism underlying behavioral abnormalities in the neurodevelopmental disorder Williams syndrome. A deficit in myelination, resulting from the deletion of a Williams syndrome-associated gene in forebrain excitatory neurons, causes hypersociability by impairing action potential conduction. Accordingly, rescuing myelination or conduction normalizes this behavior.

    • Lindsay A. Osso
    •  & Jonah R. Chan
  • Article |

    The authors discover neurons in the human prefrontal cortex that encode subjective decisions and that may underlie the process by which opinions are formed. They also find how disruption of these neurons selectively interferes with the decision-making process.

    • Mohsen Jamali
    • , Ben Grannan
    • , Keren Haroush
    • , Ziev B. Moses
    • , Emad N. Eskandar
    • , Todd Herrington
    • , Shaun Patel
    •  & Ziv M. Williams
  • Article |

    The authors report that the presynaptic protein bassoon forms toxic aggregates in neuronal somata in multiple sclerosis. Stimulation of proteasomal activity reduces bassoon aggregates, neuroaxonal loss and disability during CNS inflammation.

    • Benjamin Schattling
    • , Jan Broder Engler
    • , Constantin Volkmann
    • , Nicola Rothammer
    • , Marcel S. Woo
    • , Meike Petersen
    • , Iris Winkler
    • , Max Kaufmann
    • , Sina C. Rosenkranz
    • , Anna Fejtova
    • , Ulrich Thomas
    • , Aparajita Bose
    • , Simone Bauer
    • , Simone Träger
    • , Katharine K. Miller
    • , Wolfgang Brück
    • , Kent E. Duncan
    • , Gabriela Salinas
    • , Peter Soba
    • , Eckart D. Gundelfinger
    • , Doron Merkler
    •  & Manuel A. Friese
  • Article |

    The authors report aberrant oligodendrocyte precursor cell (OPC) interactions with blood vessels in certain multiple sclerosis lesions. These clustered OPCs can disrupt the blood–brain barrier and can impair OPC recruitment to repairing lesions.

    • Jianqin Niu
    • , Hui-Hsin Tsai
    • , Kimberly K. Hoi
    • , Nanxin Huang
    • , Guangdan Yu
    • , Kicheol Kim
    • , Sergio E. Baranzini
    • , Lan Xiao
    • , Jonah R. Chan
    •  & Stephen P. J. Fancy
  • Article |

    Mollink et al. establish a link between white matter microstructure and functional connectivity using MRI data from 11,354 individuals in the UK Biobank. GWAS identified genetic associations of these microstructure–function relationships.

    • Jeroen Mollink
    • , Stephen M. Smith
    • , Lloyd T. Elliott
    • , Michiel Kleinnijenhuis
    • , Marlies Hiemstra
    • , Fidel Alfaro-Almagro
    • , Jonathan Marchini
    • , Anne-Marie van Cappellen van Walsum
    • , Saad Jbabdi
    •  & Karla L. Miller
  • Article |

    Fouragnan et al. used neuroimaging and ultrasound neuromodution in non-human primates to demonstrate the causal role of the anterior cingulate cortex in translating counterfactual values in future choices.

    • Elsa F. Fouragnan
    • , Bolton K. H. Chau
    • , Davide Folloni
    • , Nils Kolling
    • , Lennart Verhagen
    • , Miriam Klein-Flügge
    • , Lev Tankelevitch
    • , Georgios K. Papageorgiou
    • , Jean-Francois Aubry
    • , Jerome Sallet
    •  & Matthew F. S. Rushworth
  • Article |

    Wang et al. present a computational framework integrating multi-omics data to infer key schizophrenia risk genes from GWAS data. These genes are predominantly expressed in the developing brain and are enriched for targets of approved drugs.

    • Quan Wang
    • , Rui Chen
    • , Feixiong Cheng
    • , Qiang Wei
    • , Ying Ji
    • , Hai Yang
    • , Xue Zhong
    • , Ran Tao
    • , Zhexing Wen
    • , James S. Sutcliffe
    • , Chunyu Liu
    • , Edwin H. Cook
    • , Nancy J. Cox
    •  & Bingshan Li