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Evolution of cellular diversity in primary motor cortex of human, marmoset monkey, and mouse

By Trygve E. Bakken, Nikolas L. Jorstad, Qiwen Hu, Blue B. Lake, Wei Tian, Brian E. Kalmbach, Megan Crow, Rebecca D. Hodge, Fenna M. Krienen, Staci A. Sorensen, Jeroen Eggermont, Zizhen Yao, Brian D. Aevermann, Andrew I. Aldridge, Anna Bartlett, Darren Bertagnolli, Tamara Casper, Rosa G. Castanon, Kirsten Crichton, Tanya L. Daigle, Rachel Dalley, Nick Dee, Nikolai Dembrow, Dinh Diep, Song-Lin Ding, Weixiu Dong, Rongxin Fang, Stephan Fischer, Melissa Goldman, Jeff Goldy, Lucas T. Graybuck, Brian R. Herb, Xiaomeng Hou, Jayaram Kancherla, Matthew Kroll, Kanan Lathia, Baldur van Lew, Yang Eric Li, Christine S. Liu, Hanqing Liu, Jacinta D. Lucero, Anup Mahurkar, Delissa McMillen, Jeremy Miller, Marmar Moussa, Joseph R. Nery, Philip R. Nicovich, Joshua Orvis, Julia K. Osteen, Scott F. Owen, Carter R. Palmer, Thanh Pham, Nongluk Plongthongkum, Olivier Poirion, Nora M. Reed, Christine Rimorin, Angeline C. Rivkin, William J. Romanow, Adriana E. Sedeño-Cortés, Kimberly Siletti, Saroja Somasundaram, Josef Sulc, Michael Tieu, Amy Torkelson, Herman Tung, Xinxin Wang, Fangming Xie, Anna Marie Yanny, Yun Zhang, Seth A. Ament, M. Margarita Behrens, Héctor Corrada Bravo, Jerold Chun, Alexander Dobin, Jesse Gillis, Ronna Hertzano, Patrick R. Hof, Thomas Höllt, Gregory D. Horwitz, C. Dirk Keene, Peter V. Kharchenko, Andrew L. Ko, Boudewijn P.F. Lelieveldt, Chongyuan Luo, Eran A. Mukamel, Sebastian Preissl, Aviv Regev, Bing Ren, Richard H. Scheuermann, Kimberly Smith, William J. Spain, Owen White, Christof Koch, Mike Hawrylycz, Bosiljka Tasic, Evan Z. Macosko, Steven A McCarroll, Jonathan T. Ting, Hongkui Zeng, Kun Zhang, Guoping Feng, Joseph R. Ecker, Sten Linnarsson, Ed S. Lein

Posted 01 Apr 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.03.31.016972

The primary motor cortex (M1) is essential for voluntary fine motor control and is functionally conserved across mammals. Using high-throughput transcriptomic and epigenomic profiling of over 450,000 single nuclei in human, marmoset monkey, and mouse, we demonstrate a broadly conserved cellular makeup of this region, whose similarity mirrors evolutionary distance and is consistent between the transcriptome and epigenome. The core conserved molecular identity of neuronal and non-neuronal types allowed the generation of a cross-species consensus cell type classification and inference of conserved cell type properties across species. Despite overall conservation, many species specializations were apparent, including differences in cell type proportions, gene expression, DNA methylation, and chromatin state. Few cell type marker genes were conserved across species, providing a short list of candidate genes and regulatory mechanisms responsible for conserved features of homologous cell types, such as the GABAergic chandelier cells. This consensus transcriptomic classification allowed the Patch-seq identification of layer 5 (L5) corticospinal Betz cells in non-human primate and human and characterization of their highly specialized physiology and anatomy. These findings highlight the robust molecular underpinnings of cell type diversity in M1 across mammals and point to the genes and regulatory pathways responsible for the functional identity of cell types and their species-specific adaptations.

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