Mitral and tufted cells are the projection neurons of the olfactory bulb (OB). We previously reported that somata location and innervation patterns were different between early- and late-born mitral cells (Imamura et al., 2011). Here, we introduced a plasmid that drives the expression of a GFP gene into the mouse OB using in utero electroporation, and demonstrated that we can deliver the plasmid vectors into distinct subsets of OB projection neurons by changing the timing of electroporation after fertilisation. The electroporation performed at embryonic day (E)10 preferentially labeled mitral cells in the accessory OB and main OB mitral cells in dorsomedial mitral cell layer (MCL). In contrast, the E12 electroporation introduced the plasmid vectors preferentially into main OB mitral cells in the ventrolateral MCL and tufted cells. Combining these data with BrdU injections, we confirmed that E10 and E12 electroporation preferentially labeled early- and late-born projection neurons, respectively. This work introduces a novel method for segregated labeling of mouse olfactory bulb projection neurons based on their birthdates. With this technique we found that early- and late-born projection neurons extend their secondary dendrites in the deep and superficial external plexiform layer (EPL), respectively. Although a similar segregation has been suggested for mitral vs. tufted cell dendrites, we found mitral cells projecting secondary dendrites into the superficial EPL in E12-electroporated main OB. Our observations indicate that timing of neurogenesis regulates not only somata location and innervation patterns but also the laminar organisation of projection neuron dendrites in the EPL.
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