Analysis of the plasticity of the CSF-contacting neurons after spinal cord injury

The central canal ependymal niche of the spinal cord contains cerebrospinal fluid-contacting neurons (CSF-cNs). These sensory neurons are characterized by a rather immature phenotype, suggesting that they may develop important neuroplasticity processes. We assess whether these CSF-cNs may develop plasticity processes after spinal cord injury in rodents, by analyzing the evolvement of their phenotype and organization and the involved molecular mechanisms. The student will analyze the effect of the spinal cord injury on the maturity of these CSF-cNs. Another aspect concerns the migration potential of these cells, firstly during peri-natal development. The methods will be principally histological techniques, notably immunofluorescence and image analysis.

Experimental procedures:
• Tissue preparation for histological studies.
• Immunohistofluorescence followed by observation with confocal imaging.
• Model of spinal cord injury (lesion by contusion).

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