Genetics and in particular, genetic-based approaches such as transgenes and viruses that enable researchers to express proteins of interest in desired sets of neurons in the retina and brain, are pivotal to make significant progress in modern basic visual neuroscience and toward the treatment of visual disorders. The last decade has brought forth a wide and powerful arsenal of genetic tools for identifying the neurons that comprise the visual system of flies and rodents. Because they enable delivery of a wide range of gene cargo, such tools also allow for selective manipulation of cells of interest. Indeed, in comparison to just a decade ago, nowadays it is straightforward to label a given cell type in vivo, and thereby visualize its unique morphology, and then compare it to other cells of different types, selectivity target them for electrophysiology, calcium- or voltage-dye imaging, and then reversibly silence or activate them. Last but not least, genetic tools can be leveraged to explore the signature pattern of RNA expression present in different cell types in order to probe their homology across species and/or relevance to mutations associated with human diseases.
NEUROGENETICS OF VISION NARRATIVE Genetic-based approaches such as transgenes and viruses are pivotal to make significant progress in modern basic visual neuroscience and toward the treatment of visual disorders. These will be designed and produced by this Core, along with dissemination of results and promotion of collaborative, innovative uses.
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