Resolution No.220 of the Government of the Russian Federation “On measures designed to attract the world's leading scientists to Russian institutions of higher education, research organizations of the governmental academies of sciences, and governmental research centers of the Russian Federation”.
Duration of the project: 2011-2013
The main goal of the project is to understand how the brain operates at the early developmental stages, which correspond to the fetal period in human and postnatal period in rodents.
Coordinator at INSERM
Prof. Rustem Khazipov, Director of Research, Head of Laboratory, l'Institut de Neurobiologie de la Méditerranée (INMED), DR2 INSERM U901, Marseille, France
Coordinator at KFU
Prof. Guzel Sitdikova, PhD, Head of Department of Human and Animal Physiology, Head of Laboratory of Neurobiology, Institute of fundamental medicine and biology
During the project we determine the mechanisms underlying the sensory-experience dependent plasticity in the thalamocortical synapses during formation of cortical maps. Our main hypothesis is that sensory-evoked spindle-burst oscillations in the gamma frequency range (early gamma oscillations, EGOs) temporally bind topographically aligned thalamic and cortical neurons and potentiate synapses connecting these cells. We will test this hypothesis in the model of thalamocortical synapse in the developing rat whisker-related somatosensory barrel cortex. In the first aim, we will determine the role of EGOs in coding for the sensory input from one whisker to the corresponding cortical barrel column and temporal binding of the thalamic and cortical neurons. We will then determine the EGOs' network mechanisms by exploring a hypothesis of coherent gamma-oscillators in thamalus and cortex. In the third aim, by providing various conditions for the spike-time dependent plasticity, we plan to demonstrate that synchronization of thalamic and cortical neurons in EGOs leads to potentiation and stabilization of topographic thalamocortical synapses. Finally, we will attempt to verify whether sensory stimulation of the local input triggers gamma oscillations in the topographic regions of S1 cortex in the human premature neonates. Taken together, these results will unravel the mechanisms underlying sensory experience – dependent formation of the somatosensory cortical map during the critical developmental period.
2011 – Set up of the Laboratory of Neurobiology at KFU