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PLoS One. 2012;7(10):e46157. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0046157. Epub 2012 Oct 5.

Visualization of cortical projection neurons with retrograde TET-off lentiviral vector.

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1
Division of Brain Biology, National Institute for Basic Biology, Okazaki, Japan. watakabe@nibb.ac.jp

Abstract

We are interested in identifying and characterizing various projection neurons that constitute the neocortical circuit. For this purpose, we developed a novel lentiviral vector that carries the tetracycline transactivator (tTA) and the transgene under the TET Responsive Element promoter (TRE) on a single backbone. By pseudotyping such a vector with modified rabies G-protein, we were able to express palmitoylated-GFP (palGFP) or turboFP635 (RFP) in corticothalamic, corticocortical, and corticopontine neurons of mice. The high-level expression of the transgene achieved by the TET-Off system enabled us to observe characteristic elaboration of neuronal processes for each cell type. At higher magnification, we were able to observe fine structures such as boutons and spines as well. We also injected our retrograde TET-Off vector to the marmoset cortex and proved that it can be used to label the long-distance cortical connectivity of millimeter scale. In conclusion, our novel retrograde tracer provides an attractive option to investigate the morphologies of identified cortical projection neurons of various species.

PMID:
23071541
PMCID:
PMC3465318
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0046157
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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