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It is well established that motor impairment often occurs alongside healthy aging, leading to problems with fine motor skills and coordination. Although previously thought to be caused by neuronal death accumulating across the lifespan, it is now believed that the source of this impairment instead stems from more subtle changes in neural connectivity. The dendritic spine is a prime target for exploration of this problem because it is the postsynaptic partner of most excitatory synapses received by the pyramidal neuron, a cortical cell that carries much of the information processing load in the cerebral cortex. We repeatedly imaged the same dendrites in young adult and aged mouse motor cortex over the course of 1 month to look for differences in the baseline state of the dendritic spine population. These experiments reveal increased dendritic spine density, without obvious changes in spine clustering, occurring at the aged dendrite. Additionally, aged dendrites exhibit elevated spine turnover and stabilization alongside decreased long-term spine survival. These results suggest that at baseline the aged motor cortex may exist in a perpetual state of relative instability and attempts at compensation. This phenotype of aging may provide clues for future targets of aging-related motor impairment remediation.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Cerebral cortex (New York, N.Y. : 1991)
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Gray matter situated above the gyrus hippocampi. It is composed of three layers. The molecular layer is continuous with the HIPPOCAMPUS in the hippocampal fissure. The granular layer consists of closely arranged spherical or oval neurons, called granule cells, whose AXONS pass through the polymorphic layer ending on the DENDRITES of pyramidal cells in the hippocampus.
Projection neurons in the cerebral cortex and the hippocampus. Pyramidal cells have a pyramid-shaped soma with the apex and an apical dendrite pointed toward the pial surface and other dendrites and an axon emerging from the base. The axons may have local collaterals but also project outside their cortical region.
Non-hematopoietic cells, with extensive dendritic processes, found in the primary and secondary follicles of lymphoid tissue (the B cell zones). They are different from conventional DENDRITIC CELLS associated with T-CELLS. They are derived from MESENCHYMAL STEM CELLS and are negative for class II MHC antigen and do not process or present antigen like the conventional dendritic cells do. Instead, follicular dendritic cells have FC RECEPTORS and C3B RECEPTORS that hold antigen in the form of ANTIGEN-ANTIBODY COMPLEXES on their surfaces for long periods for recognition by B-CELLS.
Nerve cells of the RETINA in the pathway of transmitting light signals to the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM. They include the outer layer of PHOTORECEPTOR CELLS, the intermediate layer of RETINAL BIPOLAR CELLS and AMACRINE CELLS, and the internal layer of RETINAL GANGLION CELLS.
Spiny processes on DENDRITES, each of which receives excitatory input from one nerve ending (NERVE ENDINGS). They are commonly found on PURKINJE CELLS and PYRAMIDAL CELLS.
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