by Delia Lenzi
Usually when we ought to understand how things work, first we try to get to know the structure exactly. But in neurology and neuroscience we often face the problem of trying to understand the software without knowing precisely the hardware. In a study recently published in Nature Methods Mikula and Denk describe a new preparation, called BROPA (brain-wide reduced-osmium staining with pyrogallol-mediated amplification), that results in the preservation and staining of ultrastructural details throughout the brain at a resolution necessary for tracing neuronal processes and identifying synaptic contacts between them. Authors suggest that with this method we will be able to reconstruct neural circuits of an entire mouse brain.
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