Retinal structure and function have been studied in many vertebrate orders, but molecular characterization has been largely confined to mammals. We used single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) to generate a cell atlas of the chick retina. We identified 136 cell types plus 14 positional or developmental intermediates distributed among the six classes conserved across vertebrates – photoreceptor, horizontal, bipolar, amacrine, retinal ganglion and glial cells. To assess morphology of molecularly defined types, we adapted a method for CRISPR-based integration of reporters into selectively expressed genes. For Müller glia, we found that transcriptionally distinct cells were regionally localized along the anterior-posterior, dorsal-ventral and central-peripheral retinal axes. We also identified immature photoreceptor, horizontal cell and oligodendrocyte types that persist into late embryonic stages. Finally, we analyzed relationships among chick, mouse and primate retinal cell classes and types. Our results provide a foundation for anatomical, physiological, evolutionary, and developmental studies of the avian visual system.
Sequencing data have been deposited in GEO under accession GSE159107. Data can be visualized at the Broad Institute Single Cell Portal using the link: https://singlecell.broadinstitute.org/single_cell/study/SCP1159.
- Masahito Yamagata
- Wenjun Yan
- Joshua R Sanes
- Masahito Yamagata
- Wenjun Yan
- Joshua R Sanes
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Animal experimentation: This study was performed in strict accordance with the recommendations in the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals of the National Institutes of Health. All of the animals were handled according to approved institutional animal care and use committee (IACUC) protocols (#24-10) of Harvard University.
- Claude Desplan, New York University, United States
© 2021, Yamagata et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Perceptual decisions about sensory input are influenced by fluctuations in ongoing neural activity, most prominently driven by attention and neuromodulator systems. It is currently unknown if neuromodulator activity and attention differentially modulate perceptual decision-making and/or whether neuromodulatory systems in fact control attentional processes. To investigate the effects of two distinct neuromodulatory systems and spatial attention on perceptual decisions, we pharmacologically elevated cholinergic (through donepezil) and catecholaminergic (through atomoxetine) levels in humans performing a visuo-spatial attention task, while we measured electroencephalography (EEG). Both attention and catecholaminergic enhancement improved decision-making at the behavioral and algorithmic level, as reflected in increased perceptual sensitivity and the modulation of the drift rate parameter derived from drift diffusion modeling. Univariate analyses of EEG data time-locked to the attentional cue, the target stimulus, and the motor response further revealed that attention and catecholaminergic enhancement both modulated pre-stimulus cortical excitability, cue- and stimulus-evoked sensory activity, as well as parietal evidence accumulation signals. Interestingly, we observed both similar, unique, and interactive effects of attention and catecholaminergic neuromodulation on these behavioral, algorithmic, and neural markers of the decision-making process. Thereby, this study reveals an intricate relationship between attentional and catecholaminergic systems and advances our understanding about how these systems jointly shape various stages of perceptual decision-making.
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