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Mapping whisker sensory cortex using voltage-sensitive dye imaging

Abstract : Since the first description of its remarkable cellular organization by Woolsey and Van der Loos (1970), the whiskers representation in the rodent primary somatosensory cortex (S1) has become a major model for studying the cortical processing of tactile sensory information. In its layer 4, neurons form clusters, called barrels, that share the same topology as the whiskers on the snout of the animal, each neuronal column associated with a barrel receiving primarily inputs coming from its corresponding whisker. A huge amount of information has been collected over the past 50 years on the whiskers sensory system, however it is still largely unknown how it really integrates distributed information to build a global percept of the tactile scene. Working at a mesoscopic scale that allows visualizing how the information flows throughout cortical columns and further propagates to other cortical areas is a real asset to address this question. Voltage sensitive dye imaging, which benefits from a sub-columnar spatial resolution and a millisecond time resolution reveals how, upon tactile stimulation of a given whisker, information is rapidly transmitted to its corresponding column in S1, but also, within the next couple of milliseconds, to the secondary somatosensory cortex and then to the primary motor cortex. Using this method, we described with an unprecedented precision the topography of whiskers representation, as well as the lateral propagation of sensory inputs within these cortical areas, thus providing insights in the neuronal dynamics at play for integration of complex multi-whisker inputs in the cortical network.
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Contributor : Isabelle Ferezou Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Thursday, August 19, 2021 - 5:54:01 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, October 6, 2021 - 9:18:01 AM


  • HAL Id : hal-03322788, version 1


Isabelle Ferezou. Mapping whisker sensory cortex using voltage-sensitive dye imaging. FENS 2020 Virtual Forum, Jul 2020, Virtual, United Kingdom. ⟨hal-03322788⟩



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