Image processing in the analysis of neuronal dendritic branching patterns: Does structure follow function across different species?

Herbert F. Jelinek, Nebojša T. Milošević, Dušan Ristanović, David Cornforth

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

Abstract

Structure and function are closely related in biology. This chapter describes the analysis of alpha retinal ganglion cells that are seen as preserving their function across species, to determine whether structure follows function, that is, whether similar structures can be observed. Two-dimensional images of the alpha retinal ganglion cells of three orders of mammals are investigated in order to determine the consistency of the dendritic branching pattern across eleven mammalian species. Using the linear two-dimensional Sholl method, we present a mathematical model, which includes the critical and maximal values of the number of intersections, and the abscissae of the inflection points of the branching points and terminal tips, with respect to the radius. Differences among these parameters for the eleven mammalian species were statistically significant. We therefore propose a hypothesis that the morphology of the alpha retinal ganglion cells are not conserved in mammals, coming from different habitats and having a wide variety of behaviors, despite similar function.

Original languageBritish English
Title of host publicationImage Processing
Subtitle of host publicationMethods, Applications and Challenges
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Pages163-174
Number of pages12
ISBN (Print)9781620818442
StatePublished - Sep 2012

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