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Comprehensive connectivity of the mouse main olfactory bulb: analysis and online digital atlas.

Frontiers in neuroanatomy | Aug 14, 2012

We introduce the first open resource for mouse olfactory connectivity data produced as part of the Mouse Connectome Project (MCP) at UCLA. The MCP aims to assemble a whole-brain connectivity atlas for the C57Bl/6J mouse using a double coinjection tracing method. Each coinjection consists of one anterograde and one retrograde tracer, which affords the advantage of simultaneously identifying efferent and afferent pathways and directly identifying reciprocal connectivity of injection sites. The systematic application of double coinjections potentially reveals interaction stations between injections and allows for the study of connectivity at the network level. To facilitate use of the data, raw images are made publicly accessible through our online interactive visualization tool, the iConnectome, where users can view and annotate the high-resolution, multi-fluorescent connectivity data (www.MouseConnectome.org). Systematic double coinjections were made into different regions of the main olfactory bulb (MOB) and data from 18 MOB cases (~72 pathways; 36 efferent/36 afferent) currently are available to view in iConnectome within their corresponding atlas level and their own bright-field cytoarchitectural background. Additional MOB injections and injections of the accessory olfactory bulb (AOB), anterior olfactory nucleus (AON), and other olfactory cortical areas gradually will be made available. Analysis of connections from different regions of the MOB revealed a novel, topographically arranged MOB projection roadmap, demonstrated disparate MOB connectivity with anterior versus posterior piriform cortical area (PIR), and exposed some novel aspects of well-established cortical olfactory projections.

Pubmed ID: 22891053 RIS Download

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Mouse Connectome Project

Three-dimensional digital connectome atlas of the C57Black/6J mouse brain and catalog of neural tracer injection cases, which will eventually cover the entire brain. Serial sections of each case are available to view at 10x magnification in the interactive iConnectome viewer. The Image Gallery provides a glimpse into some of the highlights of their data set. Representative images of multi-fluorescent tracer labeling can be viewed, while more in depth examination of these and all other cases can be performed in the iConnectome viewer. Phase 1 of this project involves generating a physical map of the basic global wiring diagram by applying proven, state of the art experimental circuit tracing methods systematically, uniformly, and comprehensively to the structural organization of all major neuronal pathways in the mouse brain. Connectivity imaging data for the whole mouse brain at cellular resolution will be presented within a standard 3D anatomic frame available through the website and accompanied by a comprehensive searchable online database. A Phase 2 goal for the future will allow users to view, search, and generate driving direction-like roadmaps of neuronal pathways linking any and all structures in the nervous system. This could be looked on as a pilot project for more ambitious projects in species with larger brains, such as human, and for providing a reliable framework for more detailed local circuitry mapping projects in the mouse.

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