Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Key Mechanism In Development Of Nerve Cells Found

Date:
September 30, 2009
Source:
University of Helsinki
Summary:
Chaos brews in the brains of newborns: the nerve cells are still bound only loosely to each other. Researchers have been studying how a neural network capable of processing information effectively is created out of chaos. A team in Finland has now found a new kind of mechanism that adjusts the functional development of nerve cell contacts.

Chaos brews in the brains of newborns: the nerve cells are still bound only loosely to each other. Under the leadership of Academy Research Fellow Sari Lauri, a team of researchers at the University of Helsinki has been studying for years how a neural network capable of processing information effectively is created out of chaos. The team has now found a new kind of mechanism that adjusts the functional development of nerve cell contacts.

The results were published in early September as the leading article of the Journal of Neuroscience.

The work carried out by Lauri's team and its partners at the Viikki campus sheds light on a development path that results in some of the large number of early synapses becoming stronger. The researchers found out hat the BDNF growth factor of nerve cells triggers a functional chain which promotes the release of the neurotransmitter glutamate. BDNF enables the release of glutamate by prohibiting the function of kainate receptors which slow down the development of the preforms of the synapses. The activity of the kainate receptors restricts the release of glutamate and the development of synapses into functional nerve cell contacts.

It is noteworthy that the brain of a newborn itself seems to organise its own development. The electrical activity of the waking brain triggers the series of events controlled by the BDNF protein, as a result of which kainate receptor activity disappears in some synapses. The development is based on the considerable plasticity of the developing neural network: it can reshape its structureand function to a large extent.

According to Lauri, the new research results help understand how central nervous system diseases originating in early development are established. The finding also provides researchers with the opportunity to obtain information about the different aspects of endogenous activity of the brain. At the same time, it could be possible to develop new kinds of pharmaceuticals for the treatment of childhood epilepsy, for example.

Lauri's team conducted the research in co-operation with the research teams of Eero Castren and Tomi Taira from the Neuroscience Centre, and the research team of Jari Yli-Kauhaluoma from the Faculty of Pharmacy.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Helsinki. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Helsinki. "Key Mechanism In Development Of Nerve Cells Found." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 September 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090929132507.htm>.
University of Helsinki. (2009, September 30). Key Mechanism In Development Of Nerve Cells Found. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090929132507.htm
University of Helsinki. "Key Mechanism In Development Of Nerve Cells Found." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090929132507.htm (accessed August 30, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

AFP (Aug. 30, 2014) Authorities in Liberia try to stem the spread of the Ebola epidemic by raising awareness and setting up sanitation units for people to wash their hands. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 30, 2014) California lawmakers pass a bill requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on campuses. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
3 Things To Know About The Ebola Outbreak's Progression

3 Things To Know About The Ebola Outbreak's Progression

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) Here are three things you need to know about the deadly Ebola outbreak's progression this week. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins