PFC explorer


Coordinated activity-induced transcriptional changes across multiple neuron subtypes of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) play a pivotal role in encoding and regulating major cognitive behaviors. Yet, the specific transcriptional programs in each neuron subtype remain unknown. Using single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq), here we comprehensively classified all unique cell subtypes in the PFC. We analyzed transcriptional dynamics of each cell subtype under a naturally adaptive and an induced condition. Adaptive changes during adolescence (between P21 and P60), a highly dynamic phase of postnatal neuroplasticity, profoundly impacted transcription in each neuron subtype, including cell type-specific regulation of genes implicated in major neuropsychiatric disorders. On the other hand, an induced plasticity evoked by chronic cocaine addiction resulted in progressive transcriptional changes in multiple neuron subtypes and became most pronounced upon prolonged drug withdrawal. Our findings lay a foundation for understanding cell type-specific postnatal transcriptional dynamics under normal PFC function and in neuropsychiatric disease states.