Neuroscience in Denmark

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General information

Name (center, department, group or other)
Yonehara Lab, DANDRITE, Nordic EMBL, Dept. Biomedicine, Aarhus University
Contact name
Keisuke Yonehara
Contact email
Contact title
Associate Professor
13. May 2017
(Last edited: 1. March 2018)

Brief description of research activities

Yonehara lab seeks to address the following questions:

How are sensory inputs processed by central circuits?
What is the function of individual cell types in computation and behaviour?
What are the genetic and activity-dependent mechanisms of circuit development?

We address these questions mainly by focusing on visual circuits across retina, superior colliculus, thalamus and visual cortex. The logic of our research plan is to first identify a computation performed by a given neuronal circuit comprising distinct cell types in the adult brain. Second, to investigate how the computation is performed by linking the activity and synaptic connectivity of individual cell types in the circuit to the computation that the circuit achieves. Third, to examine the role of individual cell types in transforming the sensory input into output behavior. Finally, to study the genetic mechanisms by which the elementary circuit motifs are assembled, and how its dysfunction can lead to disease.

We perform cell-type-specific experiments that require a wide spectrum of experimental approaches from molecular biology, genomics, genetics, electrophysiology, optogenetics, multi-photon functional imaging, trans-synaptic viral tracing, and behavioral analysis. We are developing new genetic and viral technologies that facilitate probing circuit function in healthy and diseased systems.

Our lab is funded by ERC Starting Grant "CIRCUITASSEMBLY" 2015-2020.


Circuit neuroscience, Retina, Superior colliculus, Visual cortex, Motion computation, Optic flow, Eye movements, Circuit development, Synaptic specificity

Research tools and techniques

Two-photon imaging, Electrophysiology, Mouse genetics, Behavioral analysis, Trans-synaptic viral tracing

Scientific Personnel

No of Associate Professors/Postdocs: 5
No of PhD students: 3
Other: 2

Key references from within the last 5 years

Virus stamping for targeted single-cell infection in vitro and in vivo.
Schubert R, Trenholm S, Balint K, Kosche G, Cowan CS, Mohr MA, Munz M, Martinez-Martin D, Fläschner G, Newton R, Krol J, Scherf BG, Yonehara K, Wertz A, Ponti A, Ghanem A, Hillier D, Conzelmann KK, Müller DJ, Roska B (2018)
Nat Biotechnol 36: 81-99.

Different modes of visual integration in the lateral geniculate nucleus revealed by single-cell-initiated transsynaptic tracing.
Rompani SB, Müllner FE, Wanner A, Zhang C, Roth CN, Yonehara K, Roska B (2017)
Neuron 93: 767-776.

“MAPseq”-uencing Long-Range Neuronal Projections.
Yonehara K, Roska B (2016)
Neuron 91: 945-947.

Congenital Nystagmus Gene FRMD7 Is Necessary for Establishing a Neuronal Circuit Asymmetry for Direction Selectivity.
Yonehara K*, Fiscella M*, Drinnenberg A*, Esposti F, Trenholm S, Krol J, Franke F, Scherf BG, Kusnyerik A, Müller J, Szabo A, Jüttner J, Cordoba F, Reddy AP, Németh J, Nagy ZZ, Munier F, Hierlemann A, Roska B (2016)
Neuron 89: 177-193. *equally contributed. Best of Neuron 2016

Single-cell-initiated monosynaptic tracing reveals layer-specific cortical network modules.
Wertz A, Trenholm S, Yonehara K, Hillier D, Raics Z, Leinweber M, Szalay G, Ghanem A, Keller G, Rózsa B, Conzelmann KK, Roska B (2015)
Science 349: 70-74.

Motion detection: Neuronal circuit meets theory.
Yonehara K, Roska B (2013)
Cell 154:1188-1189.

The first stage of cardinal direction selectivity is localized to the dendrites of retinal ganglion cells.
Yonehara K*, Farrow K*, Ghanem A, Hillier D, Balint K, Teixeira M, Jüttner J, Noda M, Neve RL, Conzelmann KK, Roska B (2013)
Neuron 79: 1078-1085. *equally contributed.

Ambient illumination toggles a neuronal circuit switch in the retina and visual perception at cone threshold.
Farrow K, Teixeira M, Szikra T, Viney TJ, Balint K, Yonehara K, Roska B (2013)
Neuron 78: 325-338.

Ezh2 orchestrates topographic migration and connectivity of mouse precerebellar neurons.
Di Meglio T, Kratochwil CF, Vilain N, Loche A, Vitobello A, Yonehara K, Hrycaj SM, Roska B, Peters, AH, Eichmann A, Wellik D, Ducret S, Rijli FM (2013)
Science 339: 204-207.

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