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    The olfactory system remains plastic throughout life because of continuous neurogenesis of sensory neurons in the nose and inhibitory interneurons in the olfactory bulb. Here, we reveal that transgenic expression of an odorant receptor has non-cell autonomous effects on axons expressing this receptor from the endogenous gene. Perinatal expression of transgenic odorant receptor causes rerouting of like axons to new glomeruli, whereas expression after the sensory map is established does not lead to rerouting. Further, chemical ablation of the map after rerouting does not restore the normal map, even when the transgenic receptor is no longer expressed. Our results reveal that glomeruli are designated as targets for sensory neurons expressing specific odorant receptors during a critical period in the formation of the olfactory sensory map.


    Lulu Tsai, Gilad Barnea. A critical period defined by axon-targeting mechanisms in the murine olfactory bulb. Science (New York, N.Y.). 2014 Apr 11;344(6180):197-200

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    PMID: 24723611

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