Opera Medica et Physiologica

Investigating Mechanisms of Axon Navigation Using Microfluidic Methods

Author Affiliations

Arseniy Gladkov1,2*,  Yana Pigareva1, Oksana Antipova1, Vladimir Kolpakov1, Victor Tarabykin1, Irina Mukhina1,2, Victor Kazantsev1, Alexey Pimashkin1

1 Lobachevsky State University of Nizhny Novgorod, Nizhny Novgorod, Russia,

2 Privolzhskiy Research Medical University, Nizhny Novgorod, Russia

Corresponding author: 

Arseniy Gladkov (gladkov@neuro.nnov.ru)

Abstract: 

Axo-axonal interactions of neuronal cells play an important role in functional development during embryogenesis. Axons of the cells formed on early stages of the brain development provide a template for the growing axons of later axons. However, the mechanisms of the guiding of younger axons by already formed axons are not well understood. In this study, we present a method to study such axo-axonal interactions in vitro using microfluidics methods and culturing neocortical cells. We studied the dynamics of axon growth in microchannels perpendicularly intersecting with other microchannels. This study provides fundamental understanding of the axonal navigation in microfluidic structures, which further facilitate the design of  experimental in vitro model for studying the role of already formed axons in the development of neuronal system.