Changes in Functional Network Output of Cocultured Ventral Horn Neurons
Co-cultures are a traditional method for studying the cellular properties of cell to cell interactions among different cell types. How network properties in these multicellular synthetic systems vary from monocultures are of particular interest. Understanding the changes in the functional output of these in vitro spiking neural networks can provide new insights into in vivo systems and how to develop biological system models that better reflect physiological conditions - something of paramount importance to the progress of synthetic biology. Culture models of spinal motor neurons have been customarily studied as a monoculture, and the overwhelming consensus is that in culture they are different in nature from their in vivo counterparts. We studied the electrophysiological properties of spinal ventral horn networks cocultured with myocytes or astrocytes using a 64 channel microelectrode array system to record extracellular voltage measurements. Significant differences were found between coculture types in metrics of spiking, bursting, and network bursting. Traditional culturing techniques involving a uniform cell type might not be the best way to functionally model in vivo neural networks. A synthetic ecosystem of various cell types is beneficial to replicating cell behavior in vitro, thus is a necessary refinement to the commonly used technique of cell culture. With a more physiological model system, hypotheses about interacting systems can be better addressed and the outcomes will have greater relevancy.
The folder name is based on plating date of the culture. If the folder name contains, "myo," then it is a myocyte coculture. If the name contains, "astro," then it is an astrocyte coculture. If it contains neither, "astro," or, "myo," then it is a ventral horn culture. The original raw recording are .modat file type. All other file types are associated with post-processing analysis.