Neuroscience in Denmark

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General information

Name (center, department, group or other)
Department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology, Copenhagen University
Contact name
Jens C. Rekling
Contact email
Contact title
Associate Professor
31. July 2015

Brief description of research activities

My scientific work has been focused on cellular and systems neurophysiology - in particular the electrophysiology of brainstem neurons. My main research interest is understanding how small assemblies of neurons produce motor behavior, and how this behavior is modified by neuropeptides and other neuroactive compounds. At Copenhagen University I uncovered the electrophysiological properties of several important brainstem neurons and described the effect of TRH and met-enkephalin. At C.N.R.S, in Paris, I studied respiratory neurons, and identified a particular neuron type, which is remains the most likely candidate for generating inspiratory rhythm. At UCLA I performed studies to further support the group-pacemaker hypothesis for respiratory rhythm generation, and also studied properties of other brainstem neurons. At H. Lundbeck A/S I developed a number of cellular models for neurological diseases and laid the groundwork for later forming a small company (electropharma) which develops assays for drug discovery. Upon returning to Copenhagen University I continued work on the brainstem respiratory system, and launched a new research program studying the function of the olivocerebellar system. My overall goal for the future is to understand simple motor or sensory behaviors from the cellular to the network level, and plan to reach this goal by applying the latest multi-recording and optogenetic methods.
Keywords: Neurophysiology, motor control, respiratory control, brainstem, cerebellum.

Research tools and techniques

Optical recording and manipulation
Molecular biology

Scientific Personnel

No of Associate Professors/Postdocs: 1
No of PhD students: 1
Other: 1

Key references from within the last 5 years

Falk, S, and Rekling, J.C. (2009). Neurons in the prebötzinger complex and VRG are located in proximity to arterioles in newborn mice. Neuroscience Letters 450, 229–234.
Tarras-Wahlberg, S., and Rekling, J.C. (2009). Hypoglossal motoneurons in newborn mice receive respiratory drive from both sides of the medulla. Neuroscience 161 (2009) 259–268.
Jensen, K.H.R., and Rekling, J.C. (2010). Development of a no-wash assay for mitochondrial membrane potential using the styryl dye DASPEI. J. Biomolec. Screen. 15(9): 1071- 1081.
Del Negro, C.A., Hayes, J.A., and Rekling, J.C. (2011). Dendritic calcium activity precedes inspiratory bursts in preBötzinger Complex neurons of neonatal mice recorded in vitro. J. Neuroscience. January 19, 2011 31(3):1017–1022
Persson, K., and Rekling, J.C. (2011). Population calcium imaging of spontaneous respiratory- and novel motor activity in the facial nucleus and ventral brainstem in newborn mice- J. Physiol 589 (10): 2543–2558
Rekling J.C., Jensen K.H., Jahnsen H. (2012).Spontaneous cluster activity in the inferior olivary nucleus in brainstem slices from postnatal mice. J Physiol April 2012 590 (7) 1547-1562.
Albert M, Schmitz SU, Kooistra SM, Malatesta M, Morales Torres C, Rekling JC, Johansen JV, Abarrategui I, Helin K. The Histone Demethylase Jarid1b Ensures Faithful Mouse Development by Protecting Developmental Genes from Aberrant H3K4me3. PLoS Genet. 2013 Apr;9(4):e1003461. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1003461. Epub 2013 Apr 18.
Apuschkin, M., Ougaard, M., and Rekling, JC. (2013) Spontaneous calcium waves in granule cells in cerebellar slice cultures. Neuroscience Letters 553, 78– 83.
Kølvraa M, Müller FC, Jahnsen H, Rekling JC. (2014). Mechanisms contributing to cluster formation in the inferior olivary nucleus in brainstem slices from postnatal mice. J Physiol. Jan 1;592(Pt 1):33-47.
Harsløf, M, Müller, FC, Rohrberg, J., and Rekling, JC. (2015). Fast neuronal labeling in live tissue using a biocytin conjugated fluorescent probe. J. Neuroscience Methods 253, 101-109.

Scherfigsvej 7
2100 Copenhagen Ø
Tel. +45 39 12 80 00
CVR-nr. 11 81 49 13
Nils Axelsen Ralf Hemmingsen Lauritz Holm-Nielsen Ralf Hemmingsen Jens Oddershede Jens Frederik Rehfeld Anders Bjørklund