Neuroscience Seminar Series:
Thomas Kuner – Professor, Director of the Department of Functional Neuroanatomy, University of Heidelberg.
‘Nanostructure of active zones at the calyx of Held: New avenues paved by STED, dSTORM and resin-free scanning-electron-microscopy’
Video on Média2Descartes.
The 3D arrangement of presynaptic active zone proteins is a key determinant in generating presynaptic function. Despite knowing the molecular identity of almost all presynaptic proteins, very little is known about the 3D positioning and stoichiometry of active zone proteins. The lecture will present our attempts of using superresolution microscopy (STED and 3D-dSTORM) to visualize vesicle proteins, active zone proteins and cytoskeleton at the calyx of Held giant synapse in fixed tissue samples. An fresh perspective on cellular ultrastructure will be introduced with our novel resin-free scanning-electron-microscopy (RF-SEM) approach combined with focused-ion beam SEM and electron tomography. These approaches confer unprecedented 3D views of ultrastructural organization from presynaptic nerve terminals to entire cells.