Subcellular Optogenetic Stimulation for Activity-Dependent Myelination of Axons in a Novel Microfluidic Compartmentalized Platform

Hae Ung Lee, Sudip Nag, Agata Blasiak, Yan Jin, Nitish V Thakor, In Hong Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Myelination is governed by neuron-glia communication, which in turn is modulated by neural activity. The exact mechanisms remain elusive. We developed a novel in vitro optogenetic stimulation platform that facilitates subcellular activity induction in hundreds of neurons simultaneously. The light isolation was achieved by creating a biocompatible, light-absorbent, black microfluidic device integrated with a programmable, high-power LED array. The system was applied to a compartmentalized culture of primary neurons whose distal axons were interacting with oligodendrocyte precursor cells. Neural activity was induced along whole neurons or was constrained to cell bodies with proximal axons or distal axons only. All three modes of stimulation promoted oligodendrocyte differentiation and the myelination of axons as evidenced by a decrease in the number of oligodendrocyte precursor cells followed by increases in the number of mature oligodendrocytes and myelin sheath fragments. These results demonstrated the potential of our novel optogenetic stimulation system for the global and focal induction of neural activity in vitro for studying axon myelination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1317-1324
Number of pages8
JournalACS Chemical Neuroscience
Volume7
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 19 2016

Keywords

  • black PDMS
  • microfluidics
  • myelination
  • oligodendrocytes
  • Optogenetic stimulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Biochemistry
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology

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