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Heterogeneous temporal profiles of olfactory receptor neurons in Lobster

2012/04/22

Primary olfactory receptor neurons (ORN) bind to odor molecules in the medium and sends action potentials to the brain. This signaling is not simply ON and OFF, but each ORN has delicate sensitivity to various odors and shows diverse temporal activation patterns. Using both electrophysiology and Calcium-sensitive dye imaging, my collaborators Yuriy V. Bobkov and Kirill Y. Ukhanov studied the temporal aspect of Lobster ORNs. The heterogeneous response patterns are well presented in a recent paper published in PLoS One. I was particularly interested in a special type of ORN called bursting ORNs. Bursting ORNs are spontaneously oscillating, and the Calcium imaging data allows population analysis. I was involved in the analysis to see if there’s any sign of synchrony using resampling based burst-triggered averaging technique. It turns out that they rarely interact, if any. Moreover, they have a wide range of periods of oscillation. Since they are coupled through the environment (a filament of odor molecules in the medium), in natural environments or under controlled odor stimulation they sometimes synchronize which is a subject of another paper under review.

Note: the publication actually has my first name as Ill instead of Il which is silly and sick. I asked for a correction, but it seems PLoS One will only publish a note for the correction and not correct the actual article (because of the inconsistency it will cause for other indexing systems [1][2]). This could have been fixed in the proof, if PLoS did proofs before final publications, but they don’t (presumably to lower costs). In my opinion, this is a flaw of PLoS journals. EDIT: there’s a note saying that my name is misspelled now.

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