A molecular neuroethological approach for identifying and characterizing a cascade of behaviorally regulated genes.
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Songbirds have one of the most accessible neural systems for the study of brain mechanisms of behavior. However, neuroethological studies in songbirds have been limited by the lack of high-throughput molecular resources and gene-manipulation tools. To overcome these limitations, we constructed 21 regular, normalized, and subtracted full-length cDNA libraries from brains of zebra finches in 57 developmental and behavioral conditions in an attempt to clone as much of the brain transcriptome as possible. From these libraries, approximately 14,000 transcripts were isolated, representing an estimated 4,738 genes. With the cDNAs, we created a hierarchically organized transcriptome database and a large-scale songbird brain cDNA microarray. We used the arrays to reveal a set of 33 genes that are regulated in forebrain vocal nuclei by singing behavior. These genes clustered into four anatomical and six temporal expression patterns. Their functions spanned a large range of cellular and molecular categories, from signal transduction, trafficking, and structural, to synaptically released molecules. With the full-length cDNAs and a lentiviral vector system, we were able to overexpress, in vocal nuclei, proteins of representative singing-regulated genes in the absence of singing. This publicly accessible resource http://songbirdtranscriptome.net can now be used to study molecular neuroethological mechanisms of behavior.
Gene Expression Profiling
Gene Expression Regulation
Molecular Sequence Data
Nervous System Physiological Phenomena
Published Version (Please cite this version)10.1073/pnas.0607098103
Publication InfoWada, Kazuhiro; Howard, Jason T; McConnell, Patrick; Whitney, Osceola; Lints, Thierry; Rivas, Miriam V; ... Jarvis, Erich D (2006). A molecular neuroethological approach for identifying and characterizing a cascade of behaviorally regulated genes. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 103(41). pp. 15212-15217. 10.1073/pnas.0607098103. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/11236.
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Adjunct Professor in the Dept. of Neurobiology
Dr. Jarvis' laboratory studies the neurobiology of vocal communication. Emphasis is placed on the molecular pathways involved in the perception and production of learned vocalizations. They use an integrative approach that combines behavioral, anatomical, electrophysiological and molecular biological techniques. The main animal model used is songbirds, one of the few vertebrate groups that evolved the ability to learn vocalizations. The generality of the discoveries is tested in other vocal