Quantitative neuroanatomy for connectomics in Drosophila

Casey Schneider-Mizell, Stephan Gerhard, Mark Longair, Tom Kazimiers, Feng Li, Maarten F. Zwart, Andrew Champion, Frank Midgley, Rick Fetter, Stephan Saalfeld, Albert Cardona

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

184 Citations (Scopus)
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Neuronal circuit mapping using electron microscopy demands laborious proofreading or reconciliation of multiple independent reconstructions. Here, we describe new methods to apply quantitative arbor and network context to iteratively proofread and reconstruct circuits and create anatomically enriched wiring diagrams. We measured the morphological underpinnings of connectivity in new and existing reconstructions of Drosophila sensorimotor (larva) and visual (adult) systems. Synaptic inputs were preferentially located on numerous small, microtubule-free 'twigs' which branch off a single microtubule-containing 'backbone'. Omission of individual twigs accounted for 96% of errors. However, the synapses of highly connected neurons were distributed across multiple twigs. Thus, the robustness of a strong connection to detailed twig anatomy was associated with robustness to reconstruction error. By comparing iterative reconstruction to the consensus of multiple reconstructions, we show that our method overcomes the need for redundant effort through the discovery and application of relationships between cellular neuroanatomy and synaptic connectivity.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12059
Number of pages36
Early online date18 Mar 2016
Publication statusPublished - 30 Sept 2016


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