Dr Jie Liu
Sensory Perception and Ageing Laboratory
Biomedical Discovery Institute, Monash University, VIC

Title: "Development of C. elegans Locomotion: Finding Balance in Imbalance"

Abstract: The nervous system experiences prominent structural changes during development, but how the information is processed within the dynamic structure is not clear. Here, we use C. elegans neuromuscular junction (NMJ) as a model to investigate the excitation-inhibition (E-I) balance between excitatory cholinergic and inhibitory GABAergic signalling during development. Our behavioural analysis finds that C. elegans balanced locomotion is characterized by four fundamental shapes throughout development, although the motor system exhibits unbalanced muscular receptor expressions and synaptic connections between juvenile and adult worms. Further electrophysiological studies discover that cholinergic and GABAergic signals at NMJs exhibit distinctive development rates, and cholinergic NMJs exhibit the same kinetics of ACh release, but slow depression during development. More interestingly, our research with L1 larval presents a novel E-I balance model in which the nonsynaptic cholinergic communication mediates excitatory signals at NMJ, while the synaptic GABAergic communication inhibits muscle cells by inducing chloride efflux. These observations suggest that the motor system of C. elegans uses distinctive mechanisms to maintain the E-I balance during development.


About Neuroscience Seminars

Neuroscience seminars at the QBI play a major role in the advancement of neuroscience in the Asia-Pacific region. The primary goal of these seminars is to promote excellence in neuroscience through the exchange of ideas, establishing new collaborations and augmenting partnerships already in place.

Seminars in the QBI Auditorium on Level 7 are held on Wednesdays at 12-1pm, which are sometimes simulcast on Zoom (with approval from the speaker). We also occassionally hold seminars from international speakers via Zoom. The days and times of these seminars will vary depending on the time zone of the speaker. Please see each seminar listed below for details. 


Neuroscience Seminars archive 2005-2018