Transsynaptic tracing methods are crucial tools in studying neural circuits. Although a couple of anterograde tracing methods and a targeted retrograde tool have been developed in Drosophila melanogaster, there is still need for an unbiased, user-friendly, and flexible retrograde tracing system. Here we describe retro-Tango, a method for transsynaptic, retrograde circuit tracing and manipulation in Drosophila. In this genetically encoded system, a ligand-receptor interaction at the synapse triggers an intracellular signaling cascade that results in reporter gene expression in presynaptic neurons. Importantly, panneuronal expression of the elements of the cascade renders this method versatile, enabling its use not only to test hypotheses but also to generate them. We validate retro-Tango in various circuits and benchmark it by comparing our findings with the electron microscopy reconstruction of the Drosophila hemibrain. Our experiments establish retro-Tango as a key method for circuit tracing in neuroscience research.
The R code used for analysis is available at: https://github.com/anthonycrown/retrotango
- Gilad Barnea
- Anthony M Crown
- Doruk Savaş
- Ezgi Memiş
- Doruk Savaş
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- P Robin Hiesinger, Institute for Biology Free University Berlin, Germany
© 2023, Sorkaç 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.
The synchronization of canonical fast sleep spindle activity (12.5–16 Hz, adult-like) precisely during the slow oscillation (0.5–1 Hz) up peak is considered an essential feature of adult non-rapid eye movement sleep. However, there is little knowledge on how this well-known coalescence between slow oscillations and sleep spindles develops. Leveraging individualized detection of single events, we first provide a detailed cross-sectional characterization of age-specific patterns of slow and fast sleep spindles, slow oscillations, and their coupling in children and adolescents aged 5–6, 8–11, and 14–18 years, and an adult sample of 20- to 26-year-olds. Critically, based on this, we then investigated how spindle and slow oscillation maturity substantiate age-related differences in their precise orchestration. While the predominant type of fast spindles was development-specific in that it was still nested in a frequency range below the canonical fast spindle range for the majority of children, the well-known slow oscillation-spindle coupling pattern was evident for sleep spindles in the adult-like canonical fast spindle range in all four age groups—but notably less precise in children. To corroborate these findings, we linked personalized measures of fast spindle maturity, which indicate the similarity between the prevailing development-specific and adult-like canonical fast spindles, and slow oscillation maturity, which reflects the extent to which slow oscillations show frontal dominance, with individual slow oscillation-spindle coupling patterns. Importantly, we found that fast spindle maturity was uniquely associated with enhanced slow oscillation-spindle coupling strength and temporal precision across the four age groups. Taken together, our results suggest that the increasing ability to generate adult-like canonical fast sleep spindles actuates precise slow oscillation-spindle coupling patterns from childhood through adolescence and into young adulthood.
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