The And Of The Structure Of Dna

3909 Words Jul 1st, 2015 16 Pages
In 1979 Nobel prize laureate and the co-discoverer of the structure of DNA called for a precise method to gain control over specific classes of neurones “leaving the others more of less unaltered” which will allow us to understand more about the “profoundly mysterious brain.” This was the first articulated idea of optogenetics, which would lead to the development of one of the most exciting areas of neuroscience. In 2005 Karl Desseroth and Ed Boyden publishes a paper detailing a single optogenetic system a revolutionary paper, using channel rhodopsin Optogenetics, as shown by the name, is a mixture of optics and neuroscience, which combines the precision of light with specific of genetic targeting. It allows genetic control of cellular events with rapid reversibility.

The brain is densely packed with interconnected neurones, which compute using electrical signals 1. The neurones may fall in to different classes, and in the past it has been very difficult to analyze which classes of neurones work together. Inhibiting a neurone would reveal what it is required for and activating a neurone reveals its capabilities shining more light on the brain and its functions. In the past when trying to establish which parts of the brain carry out which functions you had to wait until something went wrong with the neurons and then observing the effect or altering the neurons with lower resolution methods such as electrodes or drugs. This method has some fundamental flaws as…
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