Student Seminar on Dec 5, 2023





12:00-13:00, Dec 5, 2023


E203, Biomedicine Hall, Tsinghua University


Jiajun Yang(杨嘉俊)


Primary ciliary sensing and regulation of animal stress in the prefrontal cortex


Primary cilia are the tiny microtubule-based protrusions emanating from the surface of most non-mitotic vertebrate cells, including neurons in the neocortex. While they are considered to be the special cellular antenna to sense extracellular signals and transduce them intracellularly to regulate cell behaviour and function, little is known about the physiological role of primary cilia in neocortical neurons. Here we show that the primary cilia in excitatory neurons of the mouse prefrontal cortex (PFC) sense and regulate animal stress. In response to various animal stressors, PFC neuron primary cilia exhibited a consistent elongation in axonemal length. Selective removal of primary cilia in excitatory neurons in the prefrontal, but not sensory, cortex led to a significant reduction in animal stress. Furthermore, treatment of corticosterone, the major stress hormone, resulted in a significant increase in primary ciliary length, and animal stress and depression-like behaviour dependent on primary cilia. Moreover, suppression of primary ciliary protein kinase A activity in PFC neurons resulted in a decrease in animal stress and depression-like behaviour. Together, these findings suggest a previously unknown role of excitatory neuron primary cilia in the PFC in sensing and regulating animal stress and depression.