The Berg group put emphasis on strong quantitative approaches in neuroscience by including computational neuroscience. In particular, we believe investigating populations of neurons, networks, as opposed to the single-neuron tradition, is crucial. In turn, this will likely spur therapeutic strategies for individuals with neurological conditions, especially spinal cord injuries. Our key research areas are:

  • Neuronal Population activity in the spinal cord and brain using large array electrophysiology.
  • Development of novel probe technology
  • Classification of network architecture in motor circuits.
  • Histological clearing techniques for large sample imaging for network reconstruction
  • In vivo, awake electrophysiology with chronic implantation of electrodes and optical fibers in the central nervous system. 
  • Computational neuroscience 

Technological achievements:

Designed the Berg64-probe now sold at Neuronexus, http://neuronexus.com/ 

Techniques

Awake, behaving rodents, as well as anesthetized and in vitro preparations, are used as a part of our ongoing research.  Our technical expertise includes:

  • intracellular recording
  • in vivo multisite extracellular recording
  • design and fabrication of micro electrode arrays
  • juxtacellular staining with paraformaldehyde fixable lipophilic dyes
  • intracortical electrical, pharmacological, and optical (optogenetic) microstimulation
  • brain bow labeling
  • viral expression and tracing
  • 3D histology including tissue clearing and immunochemistry analytical and numerical methods for data analysis
  • MRI and diffusion tensor imaging
  • single cell and network modeling
  • synaptic conductance estimation
  • simple behavioral test by rodents
  • treadmill locomotion
  • video monitoring and analysis of animal behaviors

Key Publications

  • Berg RW “Neuronal diversity in spinal motor circuits: Greater than sum of its parts” Front Neural Circuits, 11: 103, 2017
  • Jensen, KHR, and Berg RW “Advances and perspectives in tissue clearing using CLARITY”, J. Chemical Neuroanatomy, 86: 19-34, 2017
  • Berg, RW, MT Stauning, JB Sorensen, H Jahnsen (2017). “Penetration of action potentials during collision in the median and lateral giant axons of invertebrates'” Physical Review X,april 2017 
  • Jensen, KHR, RW Berg “CLARITY-compatible lipophilic dyes for electrode marking and neuronal tracing” Scientific Reports, 6:32674, 2016
  • Petersen, PC and RW Berg (2016) Lognormal firing rate distribution reveals prominent fluctuation-driven regime in spinal motor networks eLife; 10.7554/eLife.
  • Vestergaard, M and RW Berg “Divisive gain modulation of motoneurons by inhibition optimizes muscular control” J. Neuroscience 35(8):3711-3723,      2015
  • Petersen, PC, M Vestergaard, KHR Jensen, and RW Berg “Premotor spinal network with balanced excitation and inhibition during motor patterns has high resilience to structural division” J. Neuroscience 34(8):2774‚Äď2784, 2014
  • R. W. Berg, A. Alaburda and J. Hounsgaard (2007) Balanced inhibition and excitation drives spike activity in spinal half-center” Science, vol. 315(5810) 390-393.      

 

Motoneurons in sagittal section