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Lodovichi Claudia

claudia ludovichiResearch scientist
c/o Complesso Biologico Interdipartimentale
A. Vallisneri
Viale Giuseppe Colombo 3 
35121 Padova
Tel 049-7923222

Fax 049-7923250
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Circuit formation and function
in the olfactory system


Research summary

The specificity of connections among neurons in the central nervous system is essential for normal brain function. In the sensory systems,neurons form organized structures, topographic maps, that transform sensory information into an internal representation of the external world.

ludovichi1  Figure 1. Schematic representation of the circuitry in the olfactory bulb:olfactory sensory neurons (OSN) expressing the same odorant receptor (same color) converge on the same glomerulus. Each glomerulus is formed by the synaptic connections of the axon of the OSN and the dendrite of the postsynaptic cells: mitral cells (MC), tufted cells (TC)  and periglomerular cells (PG). The granule cells (GC) connect to the postsynaptic cells, namely MC and TC.

 The scientific research in my laboratory aims to understand :

i) how an ensemble of neurons wire together to form specific neural circuits and
ii) how these circuits processes sensory information.

These processes are highly dynamic and susceptible to modifications in the face of a continuously changing flow of sensory information. Our work investigates circuit formation and function in the olfactory system in physiological and in pathological conditions. Noteworthy, the olfactory system is affected is several neurological and psychiatric diseases.

We address these issues with several different experimental approaches including real time imaging in vivo and in vitro, anatomy, electrophysiological recordings in vivo, behaviour.

ludovichi2 ludovichi3

Figure 2. Left. Example of a fluorescent tracer injection (red spot) in a GFP labeled glomerulus ( green-yellow structure, arrow).

Right, example of the anterograde projection of the external tufted cell axons (bracket) underneath the GFP glomerulus (arrow). GL = glomerular layer; EPL = external plexiform layer; IPL = internal plexiform layer.

 

 

Representative publications 

Lorenzon P, Redolfi N, Podolsky MJ, Zamparo I, Franchi SA, Pietra, G.Boccaccio A, Menini, A, Murthy VN, Lodovichi C (2015) Circuit formation and function in the olfactory bulb of mice with reduced spontaneous afferent activity. J Neurosci 35(1): 146).

Lodovichi C* and Belluscio L* (2012) Odorant receptors in the formation of the olfactory bulb circuitry. Invited Review in Physiology 27:200-212. * corresponding authors.

Maritan M, Monaco G, Zamparo I, Zaccolo M, Pozzan T, Lodovichi C (2009) Odorant receptor at the growth cone are coupled to localized cAMP and Ca2+ increases. Proc Natl Acad Sci, USA. USA. March 3, 106 (9): 3537-3542.

Lodovichi C, Belluscio L, Katz LC (2003) Functional topography of connections linking mirror symmetric maps in the mouse olfactory bulb. Neuron 38: 265-276.

Belluscio L, Lodovichi C, Feinstein P, Mombaerts P, Katz LC (2002) Odorant receptors instruct functional circuitry in the mouse olfactory bulb. Nature 419 (6904):296-300.