Transcriptional Profiling of Identified Circuit Elements in Invertebrates

  • Marta MoreyEmail author


One approach to understand how neural circuits contribute to behavior is to dissect the function of discrete neuronal components of the network. The transcriptional profile of a neuron is a starting point to infer morphological, biochemical, and physiological properties that determine its functionality. This chapter aims to provide an overview on the challenges and advances to gain genetic access to distinct neuronal cell types, and the transcriptional profiling methods used to query their gene expression. In addition, it also surveys the contribution of transcriptional profiling experiments to our knowledge on aspects of circuit structure and function, which include dendritic morphology, wiring specificity, synaptogenesis, remodeling, and physiological states and functional properties of neurons. Based on the limitations of the current transcriptional profiling approaches, this chapter also addresses the perspectives and new developments that are expected to push cell type-specific gene expression profiling to new frontiers.



The author apologizes to those whose work was not cited due to space constraints, and thanks A. Ferrús, T. Southall, L. Broday, and A. Sapir for critical reading, thoughtful comments, and insightful suggestions on this manuscript. M. Morey is supported by a Ramón y Cajal contract (RYC-2011-09479) and a Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad grant (BFU2015-69689-P).


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© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Biology, Department of Genetics, Institute of Biomedicine (IBUB)University of BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

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