Song control nucleus connectome

Falk Dittrich, Judith Kammerlander, Daniel Düring (ETH Zürich)

The song control system of songbirds is a network of diverse forebrain nuclei that has been described in much detail by stereotactic injections of antero- and retrogradely transported tracers. Besides projection neurons, song control nuclei include populations of distinct interneurons. The wiring of these cell types is not well understood.  To elucidate the connectomes within song control nuclei we strive for the application of synaptic marker immunostaining protocols on brain sections where viral vectors cause cell type specific reporter gene expression and dendritic spine labeling.  Further, sex hormone dependent changes of song control nuclei connectomes are correlated to the nature of progress in song performance. 

AreaX-projection neurons of the HVC before testosterone treatment

AreaX-projection neurons of the HVC after testosterone treatment

Spiny dendrites of an AreaX-projection HVC neuron

HVC-projections innervating RA

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