Time-resolved and spectral-resolved optical imaging to study brain hemodynamics in songbirds


Stéphane Mottin (LHC), Bruno Montcel (CREATIS), Hugues Guillet De Chatellus (LIPhy), Stéphane Ramstein (LHC), Clémentine Vignal (ENES)

Contrary to the intense debate about brain oxygen dynamics and its uncoupling in mammals, very little is known in birds. In zebra finches, picosecond optical tomography (POT) with a white laser and a streak camera can measure in vivo oxy-hemoglobin (HbO2) and deoxy-hemoglobin (Hb) concentration changes following physiological stimulation (familiar calls and songs). POT demonstrated sufficient sub-micromolar sensitivity to resolve the fast changes in hippocampus and auditory forebrain areas with 250 \mu m resolution. The time-course is composed of (i) an early 2s-long event with a significant decrease in Hb and HbO2, respectively -0.7 \mu Moles/L and -0.9 \mu Moles/L (ii) a subsequent increase in blood oxygen availability with a plateau of HbO2 (+0.3 \mu Moles/L) and (iii) pronounced vasodilatation events immediately following the end of the stimulus. One of the findings of our work is the direct link between the blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) signals previously published in birds and our results. Furthermore, the early vasoconstriction event and post-stimulus ringing seem to be more pronounced in birds than in mammals. These results in bird, a tachymetabolic vertebrate with a long lifespan, can potentially yield new insights for example in brain aging.


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