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Martinsried, Germany

The Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology is a research institute of the Max Planck Society located in Martinsried, a suburb of Munich in Germany. Research centers on the basic mechanisms and functions of the developing and adult nervous system. Main focus areas include the mechanisms of information processing and storage. It is one of 80 institute in the Max Planck Society . Wikipedia.

Klein R.,Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology
Development (Cambridge) | Year: 2012

Eph receptors and their membrane-tethered ligands have important functions in development. Trans interactions of Eph receptors with ephrins at cell-cell interfaces promote a variety of cellular responses, including repulsion, attraction and migration. Eph-ephrin signalling can be bi-directional and controls actin cytoskeleton dynamics, thereby leading to changes in cellular shape. This article provides an overview of the general structures and signalling mechanisms, and of typical developmental functions along with cell biological principles. © 2012. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

Kurschus F.C.,Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz | Jenne D.E.,Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology
Immunological Reviews | Year: 2010

Granzyme B (GzmB) is used by cytotoxic lymphocytes as a molecular weapon for the defense against virus-infected and malignantly transformed host cells. It belongs to a family of small serine proteases that are stored in secretory vesicles of killer cells. After secretion of these cytolytic granules during killer cell attack, GzmB is translocated into the cytosol of target cells with the help of the pore-forming protein perforin. GzmB has adopted similar protease specificity as caspase-8, and once delivered, it activates major executioner apoptosis pathways. Since GzmB is very effective in killing human tumor cell lines that are otherwise resistant against many cytotoxic drugs and since GzmB of human origin can be recombinantly expressed, its use as part of a 'magic bullet' in tumor therapy is a very tempting idea. In this review, we emphasize the peculiar characteristics of GzmB that make it suited for use as an effector domain in potential immunoconjugates. We discuss what is known about its uptake into target cells and the trials performed with GzmB-armed immunoconjugates, and we assess the prospects of its potential therapeutic value. © 2010 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

Borst A.,Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology
European Journal of Neuroscience | Year: 2014

Detecting the direction of image motion is important for visual navigation as well as predator, prey and mate detection and, thus, essential for the survival of all animals that have eyes. However, the direction of motion is not explicitly represented at the level of the photoreceptors: it rather needs to be computed by subsequent neural circuits, involving a comparison of the signals from neighbouring photoreceptors over time. The exact nature of this process as implemented at the neuronal level has been a long-standing question in the field. Only recently, much progress has been made in Drosophila by genetically targeting individual neuron types to block, activate or record from them. The results obtained this way indicate that: (i) luminance information from fly photoreceptors R1-6 is split into two parallel motion circuits, specialized to detect the motion of luminance increments (ON-Channel) and decrements (OFF-Channel) separately; (ii) lamina neurons L1 and L2 are the primary input neurons to these circuits (L1 → ON-channel, L2 → OFF-channel); and (iii) T4 and T5 cells carry their output signals (ON → T4, OFF → T5). © 2014 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

Borst A.,Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology | Helmstaedter M.,Max Planck Institute for Brain Research
Nature Neuroscience | Year: 2015

Motion-sensitive neurons have long been studied in both the mammalian retina and the insect optic lobe, yet striking similarities have become obvious only recently. Detailed studies at the circuit level revealed that, in both systems, (i) motion information is extracted from primary visual information in parallel ON and OFF pathways; (ii) in each pathway, the process of elementary motion detection involves the correlation of signals with different temporal dynamics; and (iii) primary motion information from both pathways converges at the next synapse, resulting in four groups of ON-OFF neurons, selective for the four cardinal directions. Given that the last common ancestor of insects and mammals lived about 550 million years ago, this general strategy seems to be a robust solution for how to compute the direction of visual motion with neural hardware. © 2015 Nature America, Inc. All rights reserved.

Baier H.,Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology
Annual Review of Cell and Developmental Biology | Year: 2013

Synaptic connections between neurons form the basis for perception and behavior. Synapses are often clustered in space, forming stereotyped layers. In the retina and optic tectum, multiple such synaptic laminae are stacked on top of each other, giving rise to stratified neuropil regions in which each layer combines synapses responsive to a particular sensory feature. Recently, several cellular and molecular mechanisms that underlie the development of multilaminar arrays of synapses have been discovered. These mechanisms include neurite guidance and cell-cell recognition. Molecules of the Slit, Semaphorin, Netrin, and Hedgehog families, binding to their matching receptors, bring axons and dendrites into spatial register. These guidance cues may diffuse over short distances or bind to sheets of extracellular matrix, thus conditioning the local extracellular milieu, or are presented on the surface of cells bordering the future neuropil. In addition, mutual recognition of axons and dendrites through adhesion molecules with immunoglobulin domains ensures cell type-specific connections within a given layer. Thus, an elaborate genetic program assembles the parallel processing channels that underlie visual perception. © 2013 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

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