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Publication - Dr James Hodge

    Age-dependent changes in clock neuron structural plasticity and excitability are associated with a decrease in circadian output behaviour and sleep

    Citation

    Curran, J, Buhl, E, Tsaneva-Atanasova, K & Hodge, J, 2019, ‘Age-dependent changes in clock neuron structural plasticity and excitability are associated with a decrease in circadian output behaviour and sleep’. Neurobiology of Aging.

    Abstract

    Ageing has significant effects on circadian behaviour across a wide variety of species, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Previous work has demonstrated the age-dependent decline in behavioural output in the model organism Drosophila. We demonstrate this age-dependent decline in circadian output is combined with changes in daily activity of Drosophila. Ageing also has a large impact on sleep behaviour, significantly increasing sleep duration whilst reducing latency. We used electrophysiology to record from large ventral lateral neurons (l-LNv) of the Drosophila circadian clock, finding a significant decrease in input resistance with age, but no significant changes in spontaneous electrical activity or membrane potential. We propose this change contributes to observed behavioural and sleep changes in light-dark conditions. We also demonstrate a reduction in the daily plasticity of the architecture of the small ventral lateral neurons (s-LNv), likely underlying the reduction in circadian rhythmicity during ageing. These results provide further insights into the effect of ageing on circadian biology, demonstrating age-related changes in electrical activity in conjunction with the decline in behavioural outputs.

    Full details in the University publications repository