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Nat Neurosci. 2016 May;19(5):756-761. doi: 10.1038/nn.4265. Epub 2016 Mar 7.

Genetically targeted magnetic control of the nervous system.

Author information

1
Department of Biology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA.
2
Neuroscience Graduate Program, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA.
3
Department of Anesthesiology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA.
4
Department of Pharmacology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA.
5
Department of Cell Biology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA.
6
Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA.

Abstract

Optogenetic and chemogenetic actuators are critical for deconstructing the neural correlates of behavior. However, these tools have several limitations, including invasive modes of stimulation or slow on/off kinetics. We have overcome these disadvantages by synthesizing a single-component, magnetically sensitive actuator, "Magneto," comprising the cation channel TRPV4 fused to the paramagnetic protein ferritin. We validated noninvasive magnetic control over neuronal activity by demonstrating remote stimulation of cells using in vitro calcium imaging assays, electrophysiological recordings in brain slices, in vivo electrophysiological recordings in the brains of freely moving mice, and behavioral outputs in zebrafish and mice. As proof of concept, we used Magneto to delineate a causal role of striatal dopamine receptor 1 neurons in mediating reward behavior in mice. Together our results present Magneto as an actuator capable of remotely controlling circuits associated with complex animal behaviors.

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PMID:
26950006
PMCID:
PMC4846560
DOI:
10.1038/nn.4265
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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