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Sample records for afferent synaptic transmission

  1. Comparison of baroreceptive to other afferent synaptic transmission to the medial solitary tract nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Andresen, Michael C.; Peters, James H.

    2008-01-01

    Cranial nerve visceral afferents enter the brain stem to synapse on neurons within the solitary tract nucleus (NTS). The broad heterogeneity of both visceral afferents and NTS neurons makes understanding afferent synaptic transmission particularly challenging. To study a specific subgroup of second-order neurons in medial NTS, we anterogradely labeled arterial baroreceptor afferents of the aortic depressor nerve (ADN) with lipophilic fluorescent tracer (i.e., ADN+) and measured synaptic responses to solitary tract (ST) activation recorded from dye-identified neurons in medial NTS in horizontal brain stem slices. Every ADN+ NTS neuron received constant-latency ST-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) (jitter <192 ?s, SD of latency). Stimulus-recruitment profiles showed single thresholds and no suprathreshold recruitment, findings consistent with EPSCs arising from a single, branched afferent axon. Frequency-dependent depression of ADN+ EPSCs averaged ?70% for five shocks at 50 Hz, but single-shock failure rates did not exceed 4%. Whether adjacent ADN? or those from unlabeled animals, other second-order NTS neurons (jitters <200 ?s) had ST transmission properties indistinguishable from ADN+. Capsaicin (CAP; 100 nM) blocked ST transmission in some neurons. CAP-sensitive ST-EPSCs were smaller and failed over five times more frequently than CAP-resistant responses, whether ADN+ or from unlabeled animals. Variance-mean analysis of ST-EPSCs suggested uniformly high probabilities for quantal glutamate release across second-order neurons. While amplitude differences may reflect different numbers of contacts, higher frequency-dependent failure rates in CAP-sensitive ST-EPSCs may arise from subtype-specific differences in afferent axon properties. Thus afferent transmission within medial NTS differed by axon class (e.g., CAP sensitive) but was indistinguishable by source of axon (e.g., baroreceptor vs. nonbaroreceptor). PMID:18790834

  2. Comparison of baroreceptive to other afferent synaptic transmission to the medial solitary tract nucleus.

    PubMed

    Andresen, Michael C; Peters, James H

    2008-11-01

    Cranial nerve visceral afferents enter the brain stem to synapse on neurons within the solitary tract nucleus (NTS). The broad heterogeneity of both visceral afferents and NTS neurons makes understanding afferent synaptic transmission particularly challenging. To study a specific subgroup of second-order neurons in medial NTS, we anterogradely labeled arterial baroreceptor afferents of the aortic depressor nerve (ADN) with lipophilic fluorescent tracer (i.e., ADN+) and measured synaptic responses to solitary tract (ST) activation recorded from dye-identified neurons in medial NTS in horizontal brain stem slices. Every ADN+ NTS neuron received constant-latency ST-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) (jitter < 192 micros, SD of latency). Stimulus-recruitment profiles showed single thresholds and no suprathreshold recruitment, findings consistent with EPSCs arising from a single, branched afferent axon. Frequency-dependent depression of ADN+ EPSCs averaged approximately 70% for five shocks at 50 Hz, but single-shock failure rates did not exceed 4%. Whether adjacent ADN- or those from unlabeled animals, other second-order NTS neurons (jitters < 200 micros) had ST transmission properties indistinguishable from ADN+. Capsaicin (CAP; 100 nM) blocked ST transmission in some neurons. CAP-sensitive ST-EPSCs were smaller and failed over five times more frequently than CAP-resistant responses, whether ADN+ or from unlabeled animals. Variance-mean analysis of ST-EPSCs suggested uniformly high probabilities for quantal glutamate release across second-order neurons. While amplitude differences may reflect different numbers of contacts, higher frequency-dependent failure rates in CAP-sensitive ST-EPSCs may arise from subtype-specific differences in afferent axon properties. Thus afferent transmission within medial NTS differed by axon class (e.g., CAP sensitive) but was indistinguishable by source of axon (e.g., baroreceptor vs. nonbaroreceptor). PMID:18790834

  3. Stochastic resonance in the synaptic transmission between hair cells and vestibular primary afferents in development.

    PubMed

    Flores, A; Manilla, S; Huidobro, N; De la Torre-Valdovinos, B; Kristeva, R; Mendez-Balbuena, I; Galindo, F; Treviño, M; Manjarrez, E

    2016-05-13

    The stochastic resonance (SR) is a phenomenon of nonlinear systems in which the addition of an intermediate level of noise improves the response of such system. Although SR has been studied in isolated hair cells and in the bullfrog sacculus, the occurrence of this phenomenon in the vestibular system in development is unknown. The purpose of the present study was to explore for the existence of SR via natural mechanical-stimulation in the hair cell-vestibular primary afferent transmission. In vitro experiments were performed on the posterior semicircular canal of the chicken inner ear during development. Our experiments showed that the signal-to-noise ratio of the afferent multiunit activity from E15 to P5 stages of development exhibited the SR phenomenon, which was characterized by an inverted U-like response as a function of the input noise level. The inverted U-like graphs of SR acquired their higher amplitude after the post-hatching stage of development. Blockage of the synaptic transmission with selective antagonists of the NMDA and AMPA/Kainate receptors abolished the SR of the afferent multiunit activity. Furthermore, computer simulations on a model of the hair cell - primary afferent synapse qualitatively reproduced this SR behavior and provided a possible explanation of how and where the SR could occur. These results demonstrate that a particular level of mechanical noise on the semicircular canals can improve the performance of the vestibular system in their peripheral sensory processing even during embryonic stages of development. PMID:26926966

  4. Cationic influences upon synaptic transmission at the hair cell-afferent fiber synapse of the frog

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cochran, S. L.

    1995-01-01

    The concentrations of inorganic cations (K+, Na+, and Ca2+) bathing the isolated frog labyrinth were varied in order to assess their role in influencing and mediating synaptic transmission at the hair cell-afferent fiber synapse. Experiments employed intracellular recordings of synaptic activity from VIIIth nerve afferents. Recordings were digitized continuously at 50 kHz, and excitatory postsynaptic potentials were detected and parameters quantified by computer algorithms. Particular attention was focused on cationic effects upon excitatory postsynaptic potential frequency of occurrence and excitatory postsynaptic potential amplitude, in order to discriminate between pre- and postsynaptic actions. Because the small size of afferents preclude long term stable recordings, alterations in cationic concentrations were applied transiently and their peak effects on synaptic activity were assessed. Increases in extracellular K+ concentration of a few millimolar produced a large increase in the frequency of occurrence of excitatory postsynaptic potentials with little change in amplitude, indicating that release of transmitter from the hair cell is tightly coupled to its membrane potential. Increasing extracellular Na+ concentration resulted in an increase in excitatory postsynaptic potential amplitude with no significant change in excitatory postsynaptic potential frequency of occurrence, suggesting that the transmitter-gated subsynaptic channel conducts Na+ ions. Decreases in extracellular Ca2+ concentration had little effect upon excitatory postsynaptic potential frequency, but increased excitatory postsynaptic potential frequency and amplitude. These findings suggest that at higher concentrations Ca2+ act presynaptically to prevent transmitter release and postsynaptically to prevent Na+ influx during the generation of the excitatory postsynaptic potential. The influences of these ions on synaptic activity at this synapse are remarkably similar to those reported at the vertebrate neuromuscular junction. The major differences between these two synapses are the neurotransmitters and the higher resting release rate and higher sensitivity of release to increased K+ concentrations of the hair cells over that of motor nerve terminals. These differences reflect the functional roles of the two synapses: the motor nerve terminal response in an all-or-nothing signal consequent from action potential invasion, while the hair cell releases transmitter in a graded fashion, proportionate to the extent of stereocilial deflection. Despite these differences between the two junctions, the similar actions of these elemental cations upon synaptic function at each implies that these ions may participate similarly in the operations of other synapses, independent of the neurotransmitter type.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS).

  5. Vanilloid receptors presynaptically modulate cranial visceral afferent synaptic transmission in nucleus tractus solitarius.

    PubMed

    Doyle, Mark W; Bailey, Timothy W; Jin, Young-Ho; Andresen, Michael C

    2002-09-15

    Although the central terminals of cranial visceral afferents express vanilloid receptor 1 (VR1), little is known about their functional properties at this first synapse within the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS). Here, we examined whether VR1 modulates afferent synaptic transmission. In horizontal brainstem slices, solitary tract (ST) activation evoked EPSCs. Monosynaptic EPSCs had low synaptic jitter (SD of latency to successive shocks) averaging 84.03 +/- 3.74 microsec (n = 72) and were completely blocked by the non-NMDA antagonist 2,3-dihydroxy-6-nitro-7-sulfonyl-benzo[f]quinoxaline (NBQX). Sustained exposure to the VR1 agonist capsaicin (CAP; 100 nm) blocked ST EPSCs (CAP-sensitive) in some neurons but not others (CAP-resistant). CAP-sensitive EPSCs had longer latencies than CAP-resistant EPSCs (4.65 +/- 0.27 msec, n = 48 vs 3.53 +/- 0.28 msec, n = 24, respectively; p = 0.011), but they had similar jitter. CAP evoked two transient responses in CAP-sensitive neurons: a rapidly developing inward current (I(cap)) (108.1 +/- 22.9 pA; n = 21) and an increase in spontaneous synaptic activity. After 3-5 min in CAP, I(cap) subsided and ST EPSCs disappeared. NBQX completely blocked I(cap). The VR1 antagonist capsazepine (10-20 microm) attenuated CAP responses. Anatomically, second-order NTS neurons were identified by 4-(4-dihexadecylamino)styryl)-N-methylpyridinium iodide transported from the cervical aortic depressor nerve (ADN) to stain central terminals. Neurons with fluorescent ADN contacts had CAP-sensitive EPSCs (n = 5) with latencies and jitter similar to those of unlabeled monosynaptic neurons. Thus, consistent with presynaptic VR1 localization, CAP selectively activates a subset of ST axons to release glutamate that acts on non-NMDA receptors. Because the CAP sensitivity of cranial afferents is exclusively associated with unmyelinated axons, VR1 identifies C-fiber afferent pathways within the brainstem. PMID:12223576

  6. Peptide and lipid modulation of glutamatergic afferent synaptic transmission in the solitary tract nucleus.

    PubMed

    Andresen, Michael C; Fawley, Jessica A; Hofmann, Mackenzie E

    2012-01-01

    The brainstem nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) holds the first central neurons in major homeostatic reflex pathways. These homeostatic reflexes regulate and coordinate multiple organ systems from gastrointestinal to cardiopulmonary functions. The core of many of these pathways arise from cranial visceral afferent neurons that enter the brain as the solitary tract (ST) with more than two-thirds arising from the gastrointestinal system. About one quarter of ST afferents have myelinated axons but the majority are classed as unmyelinated C-fibers. All ST afferents release the fast neurotransmitter glutamate with remarkably similar, high-probability release characteristics. Second order NTS neurons receive surprisingly limited primary afferent information with one or two individual inputs converging on single second order NTS neurons. A- and C-fiber afferents never mix at NTS second order neurons. Many transmitters modify the basic glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic current often by reducing glutamate release or interrupting terminal depolarization. Thus, a distinguishing feature of ST transmission is presynaptic expression of G-protein coupled receptors for peptides common to peripheral or forebrain (e.g., hypothalamus) neuron sources. Presynaptic receptors for angiotensin (AT1), vasopressin (V1a), oxytocin, opioid (MOR), ghrelin (GHSR1), and cholecystokinin differentially control glutamate release on particular subsets of neurons with most other ST afferents unaffected. Lastly, lipid-like signals are transduced by two key ST presynaptic receptors, the transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 and the cannabinoid receptor that oppositely control glutamate release. Increasing evidence suggests that peripheral nervous signaling mechanisms are repurposed at central terminals to control excitation and are major sites of signal integration of peripheral and central inputs particularly from the hypothalamus. PMID:23335875

  7. Peptide and Lipid Modulation of Glutamatergic Afferent Synaptic Transmission in the Solitary Tract Nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Andresen, Michael C.; Fawley, Jessica A.; Hofmann, Mackenzie E.

    2013-01-01

    The brainstem nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) holds the first central neurons in major homeostatic reflex pathways. These homeostatic reflexes regulate and coordinate multiple organ systems from gastrointestinal to cardiopulmonary functions. The core of many of these pathways arise from cranial visceral afferent neurons that enter the brain as the solitary tract (ST) with more than two-thirds arising from the gastrointestinal system. About one quarter of ST afferents have myelinated axons but the majority are classed as unmyelinated C-fibers. All ST afferents release the fast neurotransmitter glutamate with remarkably similar, high-probability release characteristics. Second order NTS neurons receive surprisingly limited primary afferent information with one or two individual inputs converging on single second order NTS neurons. A- and C-fiber afferents never mix at NTS second order neurons. Many transmitters modify the basic glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic current often by reducing glutamate release or interrupting terminal depolarization. Thus, a distinguishing feature of ST transmission is presynaptic expression of G-protein coupled receptors for peptides common to peripheral or forebrain (e.g., hypothalamus) neuron sources. Presynaptic receptors for angiotensin (AT1), vasopressin (V1a), oxytocin, opioid (MOR), ghrelin (GHSR1), and cholecystokinin differentially control glutamate release on particular subsets of neurons with most other ST afferents unaffected. Lastly, lipid-like signals are transduced by two key ST presynaptic receptors, the transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 and the cannabinoid receptor that oppositely control glutamate release. Increasing evidence suggests that peripheral nervous signaling mechanisms are repurposed at central terminals to control excitation and are major sites of signal integration of peripheral and central inputs particularly from the hypothalamus. PMID:23335875

  8. External QX-314 inhibits evoked cranial primary afferent synaptic transmission independent of TRPV1.

    PubMed

    Hofmann, Mackenzie E; Largent-Milnes, Tally M; Fawley, Jessica A; Andresen, Michael C

    2014-12-01

    The cell-impermeant lidocaine derivative QX-314 blocks sodium channels via intracellular mechanisms. In somatosensory nociceptive neurons, open transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) receptors provide a transmembrane passageway for QX-314 to produce long-lasting analgesia. Many cranial primary afferents express TRPV1 at synapses on neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract and caudal trigeminal nucleus (Vc). Here, we investigated whether QX-314 interrupts neurotransmission from primary afferents in rat brain-stem slices. Shocks to the solitary tract (ST) activated highly synchronous evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (ST-EPSCs). Application of 300 ?M QX-314 increased the ST-EPSC latency from TRPV1+ ST afferents, but, surprisingly, it had similar actions at TRPV1- ST afferents. Continued exposure to QX-314 blocked evoked ST-EPSCs at both afferent types. Neither the time to onset of latency changes nor the time to ST-EPSC failure differed between responses for TRPV1+ and TRPV1- inputs. Likewise, the TRPV1 antagonist capsazepine failed to prevent the actions of QX-314. Whereas QX-314 blocked ST-evoked release, the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous EPSCs remained unaltered. In neurons exposed to QX-314, intracellular current injection evoked action potentials suggesting a presynaptic site of action. QX-314 acted similarly at Vc neurons to increase latency and block EPSCs evoked from trigeminal tract afferents. Our results demonstrate that QX-314 blocked nerve conduction in cranial primary afferents without interrupting the glutamate release mechanism or generation of postsynaptic action potentials. The TRPV1 independence suggests that QX-314 either acted extracellularly or more likely entered these axons through an undetermined pathway common to all cranial primary afferents. PMID:25185814

  9. External QX-314 inhibits evoked cranial primary afferent synaptic transmission independent of TRPV1

    PubMed Central

    Largent-Milnes, Tally M.; Fawley, Jessica A.; Andresen, Michael C.

    2014-01-01

    The cell-impermeant lidocaine derivative QX-314 blocks sodium channels via intracellular mechanisms. In somatosensory nociceptive neurons, open transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) receptors provide a transmembrane passageway for QX-314 to produce long-lasting analgesia. Many cranial primary afferents express TRPV1 at synapses on neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract and caudal trigeminal nucleus (Vc). Here, we investigated whether QX-314 interrupts neurotransmission from primary afferents in rat brain-stem slices. Shocks to the solitary tract (ST) activated highly synchronous evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (ST-EPSCs). Application of 300 ?M QX-314 increased the ST-EPSC latency from TRPV1+ ST afferents, but, surprisingly, it had similar actions at TRPV1? ST afferents. Continued exposure to QX-314 blocked evoked ST-EPSCs at both afferent types. Neither the time to onset of latency changes nor the time to ST-EPSC failure differed between responses for TRPV1+ and TRPV1? inputs. Likewise, the TRPV1 antagonist capsazepine failed to prevent the actions of QX-314. Whereas QX-314 blocked ST-evoked release, the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous EPSCs remained unaltered. In neurons exposed to QX-314, intracellular current injection evoked action potentials suggesting a presynaptic site of action. QX-314 acted similarly at Vc neurons to increase latency and block EPSCs evoked from trigeminal tract afferents. Our results demonstrate that QX-314 blocked nerve conduction in cranial primary afferents without interrupting the glutamate release mechanism or generation of postsynaptic action potentials. The TRPV1 independence suggests that QX-314 either acted extracellularly or more likely entered these axons through an undetermined pathway common to all cranial primary afferents. PMID:25185814

  10. Synaptic studies inform the functional diversity of cochlear afferents.

    PubMed

    Fuchs, P A; Glowatzki, E

    2015-12-01

    Type I and type II cochlear afferents differ markedly in number, morphology and innervation pattern. The predominant type I afferents transmit the elemental features of acoustic information to the central nervous system. Excitation of these large diameter myelinated neurons occurs at a single ribbon synapse of a single inner hair cell. This solitary transmission point depends on efficient vesicular release that can produce large, rapid, suprathreshold excitatory postsynaptic potentials. In contrast, the many fewer, thinner, unmyelinated type II afferents cross the tunnel of Corti, turning basally for hundreds of microns to form contacts with ten or more outer hair cells. Although each type II afferent is postsynaptic to many outer hair cells, transmission from each occurs by the infrequent release of single vesicles, producing receptor potentials of only a few millivolts. Analysis of membrane properties and the site of spike initiation suggest that the type II afferent could be activated only if all its presynaptic outer hair cells were maximally stimulated. Thus, the details of synaptic transfer inform the functional distinctions between type I and type II afferents. High efficiency transmission across the inner hair cell's ribbon synapse supports detailed analyses of the acoustic world. The much sparser transfer from outer hair cells to type II afferents implies that these could respond only to the loudest, sustained sounds, consistent with previous reports from in vivo recordings. However, type II afferents could be excited additionally by ATP released during acoustic stress of cochlear tissues. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled . PMID:26403507

  11. Inflammation reduces the contribution of N-type calcium channels to primary afferent synaptic transmission onto NK1 receptor-positive lamina I neurons in the rat dorsal horn

    PubMed Central

    Rycroft, Beth K; Vikman, Kristina S; Christie, MacDonald J

    2007-01-01

    N-type calcium channels contribute to the release of glutamate from primary afferent terminals synapsing onto nocisponsive neurons in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord, but little is known of functional adaptations to these channels in persistent pain states. Subtype-selective conotoxins and other drugs were used to determine the role of different calcium channel types in a rat model of inflammatory pain. Electrically evoked primary afferent synapses onto lumber dorsal horn neurons were examined three days after induction of inflammation with intraplantar complete Freund's adjuvant. The maximal inhibitory effect of the N-type calcium channel blockers, ?-conotoxins CVID and MVIIA, were attenuated in NK1 receptor-positive lamina I neurons after inflammation, but the potency of CVID was unchanged. This was associated with reduced inhibition of the frequency of asynchronous-evoked synaptic events by CVID studied in the presence of extracellular strontium, suggesting reduced N-type channel contribution to primary afferent synapses after inflammation. After application of CVID, the relative contributions of P/Q and L channels to primary afferent transmission and the residual current were unchanged by inflammation, suggesting the adaptation was specific to N-type channels. Blocking T-type channels did not affect synaptic amplitude under control or inflamed conditions. Reduction of N-type channel contribution to primary afferent transmission was selective for NK1 receptor-positive neurons identified by post hoc immunohistochemistry and did not occur at synapses in laminae IIo or IIi, or inhibitory synapses. These results suggest that inflammation selectively downregulates N-type channels in the terminals of primary afferents synapsing onto (presumed) nociceptive lamina I NK1 receptor-positive neurons. PMID:17303639

  12. Inflammation reduces the contribution of N-type calcium channels to primary afferent synaptic transmission onto NK1 receptor-positive lamina I neurons in the rat dorsal horn.

    PubMed

    Rycroft, Beth K; Vikman, Kristina S; Christie, MacDonald J

    2007-05-01

    N-type calcium channels contribute to the release of glutamate from primary afferent terminals synapsing onto nocisponsive neurons in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord, but little is known of functional adaptations to these channels in persistent pain states. Subtype-selective conotoxins and other drugs were used to determine the role of different calcium channel types in a rat model of inflammatory pain. Electrically evoked primary afferent synapses onto lumber dorsal horn neurons were examined three days after induction of inflammation with intraplantar complete Freund's adjuvant. The maximal inhibitory effect of the N-type calcium channel blockers, omega-conotoxins CVID and MVIIA, were attenuated in NK1 receptor-positive lamina I neurons after inflammation, but the potency of CVID was unchanged. This was associated with reduced inhibition of the frequency of asynchronous-evoked synaptic events by CVID studied in the presence of extracellular strontium, suggesting reduced N-type channel contribution to primary afferent synapses after inflammation. After application of CVID, the relative contributions of P/Q and L channels to primary afferent transmission and the residual current were unchanged by inflammation, suggesting the adaptation was specific to N-type channels. Blocking T-type channels did not affect synaptic amplitude under control or inflamed conditions. Reduction of N-type channel contribution to primary afferent transmission was selective for NK1 receptor-positive neurons identified by post hoc immunohistochemistry and did not occur at synapses in laminae II(o) or II(i), or inhibitory synapses. These results suggest that inflammation selectively downregulates N-type channels in the terminals of primary afferents synapsing onto (presumed) nociceptive lamina I NK1 receptor-positive neurons. PMID:17303639

  13. Injury-specific functional alteration of N-type voltage-gated calcium channels in synaptic transmission of primary afferent C-fibers in the rat spinal superficial dorsal horn.

    PubMed

    Takasu, Keiko; Ogawa, Koichi; Minami, Kazuhisa; Shinohara, Shunji; Kato, Akira

    2016-02-01

    We investigated functional alterations of voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) in excitatory synaptic transmission from primary afferent A- and C-fibers after peripheral nerve injury. Patch-clamp recordings were performed on substantia gelatinosa (SG) neurons of spinal cord slices with an attached dorsal root, prepared from L5 spinal nerve-ligated (SNL) rats. The effects of neuronal VGCC blockers, ?-conotoxin GVIA (?-CgTX) for N-type channels and ?-agatoxin IVA (?-AgaIVA) for P/Q-type channels, on evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (eEPSCs) by stimulation of A- or C-fibers were studied. Besides, electrophysiological assay using dorsal root ganglion (DRG) and immunohistochemistry were done. In naïve rats, ?-CgTX (0.1-1?M) reduced more effectively A-fiber eEPSCs than C-fiber ones. After nerve injury, ?-CgTX produced great inhibition of C-fiber eEPSCs in slices with the injured L5 dorsal root of SNL model rats, as compared to sham-operated rats. By contrast, in slices with the non-injured L4 one, inhibitory effects of ?-CgTX were not changed. This occurred concurrently with increased expression of N-type VGCCs in L5 spinal dorsal horn and with enhanced Ca(2+) currents through N-type VGCCs in small-sized (C-type) L5 DRG. In terms of A-fiber eEPSCs, ?-CgTX elicited similar inhibition in nerve-injured and sham-operated rats. ?-AgaIVA (0.1?M) had less effect on A- or C-fiber eEPSCs. These results indicate that N-type, but not P/Q-type, VGCCs mainly contribute to excitatory synaptic transmission from A- and C-fibers in the spinal dorsal horn. More importantly, following nerve injury, the functional contribution of N-type VGCCs to nociceptive transmission is increased in the pre-synaptic terminals of injured C-fibers. PMID:26708163

  14. Frequency-independent synaptic transmission supports a linear vestibular behavior

    PubMed Central

    Bagnall, Martha W.; McElvain, Lauren E.; Faulstich, Michael; du Lac, Sascha

    2008-01-01

    Summary The vestibular system is responsible for transforming head motion into precise eye, head, and body movements that rapidly stabilize gaze and posture. How do central excitatory synapses mediate behavioral outputs accurately matched to sensory inputs over a wide dynamic range? Here we demonstrate that vestibular afferent synapses in vitro express frequency-independent transmission that spans their in vivo dynamic range (5 – 150 spikes/s). As a result, the synaptic charge transfer per unit time is linearly related to vestibular afferent activity in both projection and intrinsic neurons of the vestibular nuclei. Neither postsynaptic glutamate receptor desensitization nor saturation affect the relative amplitude or frequency-independence of steady-state transmission. Finally, we show that vestibular nucleus neurons can transduce synaptic inputs into linear changes in firing rate output, without relying on one-to-one calyceal transmission. These data provide a physiological basis for the remarkable linearity of vestibular reflexes. PMID:18957225

  15. TRPV1 Marks Synaptic Segregation of Multiple Convergent Afferents at the Rat Medial Solitary Tract Nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Peters, James H.; McDougall, Stuart J.; Fawley, Jessica A.; Andresen, Michael C.

    2011-01-01

    TRPV1 receptors are expressed on most but not all central terminals of cranial visceral afferents in the caudal solitary tract nucleus (NTS). TRPV1 is associated with unmyelinated C-fiber afferents. Both TRPV1+ and TRPV1- afferents enter NTS but their precise organization remains poorly understood. In horizontal brainstem slices, we activated solitary tract (ST) afferents and recorded ST-evoked glutamatergic excitatory synaptic currents (ST-EPSCs) under whole cell voltage clamp conditions from neurons of the medial subnucleus. Electrical shocks to the ST produced fixed latency EPSCs (jitter<200 µs) that identified direct ST afferent innervation. Graded increases in shock intensity often recruited more than one ST afferent and ST-EPSCs had consistent threshold intensity, latency to onset, and unique EPSC waveforms that characterized each unitary ST afferent contact. The TRPV1 agonist capsaicin (100 nM) blocked the evoked TRPV1+ ST-EPSCs and defined them as either TRPV1+ or TRPV1- inputs. No partial responses to capsaicin were observed so that in NTS neurons that received one or multiple (2–5) direct ST afferent inputs – all were either blocked by capsaicin or were unaltered. Since TRPV1 mediates asynchronous release following TRPV1+ ST-evoked EPSCs, we likewise found that recruiting more than one ST afferent further augmented the asynchronous response and was eliminated by capsaicin. Thus, TRPV1+ and TRPV1- afferents are completely segregated to separate NTS neurons. As a result, the TRPV1 receptor augments glutamate release only within unmyelinated afferent pathways in caudal medial NTS and our work indicates a complete separation of C-type from A-type afferent information at these first central neurons. PMID:21949835

  16. Synaptic Transmission Correlates of General Mental Ability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McRorie, Margaret; Cooper, Colin

    2004-01-01

    Nerve conduction velocity (NCV) and efficiency of synaptic transmission are two possible biological mechanisms that may underpin intelligence. Direct assessments of NCV, without synaptic transmission, show few substantial or reliable correlations with cognitive abilities ["Intelligence" 16 (1992) 273]. We therefore assessed the latencies of…

  17. Synaptic Transmission Correlates of General Mental Ability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McRorie, Margaret; Cooper, Colin

    2004-01-01

    Nerve conduction velocity (NCV) and efficiency of synaptic transmission are two possible biological mechanisms that may underpin intelligence. Direct assessments of NCV, without synaptic transmission, show few substantial or reliable correlations with cognitive abilities ["Intelligence" 16 (1992) 273]. We therefore assessed the latencies of…

  18. The correlated blanching of synaptic bodies and reduction in afferent firing rates caused by transmitter-depleting agents in the frog semicircular canal

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guth, P.; Norris, C.; Fermin, C. D.; Pantoja, M.

    1993-01-01

    Synaptic bodies (SBs) associated with rings of synaptic vesicles and well-defined, pre- and post-synaptic membrane structures are indicators of maturity in most hair cell-afferent nerve junctions. The role of the SBs remains elusive despite several experiments showing that they may be involved in storage of neurotransmitter. Our results demonstrate that SBs of the adult posterior semicircular canal (SCC) cristae hair cells become less electron dense following incubation of the SCC with the transmitter-depleting drug tetrabenazine (TBZ). Objective quantification and comparison of the densities of the SBs in untreated and TBZ-treated frog SCC demonstrated that TBZ significantly decreased the electron density of SBs. This reduction in electron density was accompanied by a reduction in firing rates of afferent fibers innervating the posterior SCC. A second transmitter-depleting drug, guanethidine, previously shown to reduce the electron density of hair cell SBs, also reduced the firing rates of afferent fibers innervating the posterior SCC. In contrast, the electron density of dense granules (DG), similar in size and shape to synaptic bodies (SB) in hair cells, did not change after incubation in TBZ, thus indicating that granules and SBs are not similar in regard to their electron density. The role of SBs in synaptic transmission and the transmitter, if any, stored in the SBs remain unknown. Nonetheless, the association of the lessening of electron density with a reduction in afferent firing rate provides impetus for the further investigation of the SB's role in neurotransmission.

  19. Recovery of afferent function and synaptic strength in hippocampal CA1 following traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Norris, Christopher M; Scheff, Stephen W

    2009-12-01

    Cortical contusion injury can result in the partial loss of ipsilateral CA3 neurons within 48 h, leading to a proportional reduction in the number of afferent fibers to CA1 stratum radiatum. While the loss of afferent input to CA1 exhibits a remarkable, albeit incomplete, recovery over the next few weeks, little is known about the functional status of presynaptic afferents during the depletion and recovery phases following injury. Here, we prepared hippocampal slices from adult Sprague Dawley rats at 2, 7, and 14 days after lateral cortical contusion injury and measured fiber volley (FV) amplitudes extracellularly in CA1 stratum radiatum. Field excitatory post-synaptic potentials (EPSPs) were also measured and plotted as a function of FV amplitude to assess relative synaptic strength of residual and/or regenerated synaptic contacts. At 2 days post-injury, FV amplitude and synaptic strength were markedly reduced in the ipsilateral, relative to the contralateral, hippocampus. FV amplitude in ipsilateral CA1 showed a complete recovery by 7 days, indicative of a post-injury sprouting response. Synaptic strength in ipsilateral CA1 also showed a dramatic recovery over this time; however, EPSP-to-FV curves remained slightly suppressed at both the 7 and 14 day time points. Despite these deficits, ipsilateral slices retained the capacity to express long-term potentiation, indicating that at least some mechanisms for synaptic plasticity remain intact, or are compensated for. These results are in agreement with anatomical evidence showing a profound deafferentation, followed by a remarkable re-enervation, of ipsilateral CA1 in the first few weeks after traumatic brain injury. Although plasticity mechanisms appear to remain intact, synaptic strength deficits in CA1 could limit information throughput in the hippocampus, leading to persistent memory dysfunction. PMID:19604098

  20. [Imaging non-synaptic transmission via glutamate].

    PubMed

    Okubo, Yohei

    2013-06-01

    Glutamate is the major excitatory neurotransmitter in the mammalian brain. The conventional view is that glutamate mediates synaptically confined point-to-point transmission at excitatory synapses. However, glutamate has also been suggested to escape from the synaptic cleft and mediate volume transmission, which is often referred to as glutamate spillover. This non-synaptic transmission via glutamate has been implicated in the regulation of a variety of important neural and glial functions. Despite the immense potential physiological and pathophysiological importance of glutamate spillover, the spatiotemporal dynamics of extrasynaptic glutamate concentrations have been only inferred indirectly, and their characteristics remain elusive because of a lack of appropriate technology. The recent development of fluorescent glutamate indicators has enabled the quantitative analysis of glutamate spillover. With a hybrid-type fluorescent indicator, we succeeded in imaging glutamate spillover in brain slices and in vivo. Our results showed that glutamate spillover was locally induced by the spatiotemporal cluster of synaptic activities due to the summation of glutamate originating from neighboring synapses. We also showed that glutamate spillover had magnitudes and durations that were sufficient for activating high-affinity glutamate receptors. Moreover, we successfully observed sensory input-induced glutamate spillover in the cerebral cortex in vivo. Thus, the present study clarified the features of non-synaptic transmission via glutamate and, furthermore, made it possible to directly visualize synaptic activity in live animals. PMID:23735527

  1. Regulation of synaptic transmission by CRF receptors.

    PubMed

    Orozco-Cabal, Luis; Pollandt, Sebastian; Liu, Jie; Shinnick-Gallagher, Patricia; Gallagher, Joel P

    2006-01-01

    Corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF or CRH) and its family of related peptides have long been recognized as hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis peptides that function to regulate the release of other hormones, e.g., ACTH. In addition, CRF acts outside the HPA axis not as a hormone, but as a regulator of synaptic transmission, pre- and post-synaptically, within specific CNS neuronal circuits. Synaptic transmission within the nervous system is today understood to be a more complex process compared to the concepts associated with the term 'synapse' introduced by Sherrington in 1897. Based on more than a century of progress with modern cellular and molecular experimental techniques, prior definitions and functions of synaptic molecules and their receptors need to be reconsidered (see Glossary and Fig. 1), especially in light of the important roles for CRF, its family of peptides and other potential endogenous regulators of neurotransmission, e.g., vasopressin, NPY, etc. (see Glossary). In addition, the property of 'constitutive activity' which is associated with G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) provides a persistent tonic mechanism to fine-tune synaptic transmission during both acute and chronic information transfer. We have applied the term 'regulator', adapted from the hormone literature, to CRF, as an example of a specific endogenous substance that functions to facilitate or depress the actions of neuromodulators on fast and slow synaptic responses. As such, synaptic neuroregulators provide a basic substrate to prime or initiate silently plastic processes underlying neurotransmitter-mediated information transfer at CNS synapses. Here we review the role of CRF to regulate CNS synaptic transmission and also suggest how under a variety of allostatic changes, e.g., associated with normal plasticity, or adaptations resulting from mental disorders, the synaptic regulatory role for CRF may be 'switched' in its polarity and/or magnitude in order to provide a coping mechanism to deal with daily and life-long stressors. Thus, a prominent role we assign to non-HPA axis CRF, its family of peptides, and their receptors, is to maintain both acute and chronic synaptic stability. PMID:16878401

  2. Decreased afferent excitability contributes to synaptic depression during high-frequency stimulation in hippocampal area CA1.

    PubMed

    Kim, Eunyoung; Owen, Benjamin; Holmes, William R; Grover, Lawrence M

    2012-10-01

    Long-term potentiation (LTP) is often induced experimentally by continuous high-frequency afferent stimulation (HFS), typically at 100 Hz for 1 s. Induction of LTP requires postsynaptic depolarization and voltage-dependent calcium influx. Induction is more effective if the same number of stimuli are given as a series of short bursts rather than as continuous HFS, in part because excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) become strongly depressed during HFS, reducing postsynaptic depolarization. In this study, we examined mechanisms of EPSP depression during HFS in area CA1 of rat hippocampal brain slices. We tested for presynaptic terminal vesicle depletion by examining minimal stimulation-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) during 100-Hz HFS. While transmission failures increased, consistent with vesicle depletion, EPSC latencies also increased during HFS, suggesting a decrease in afferent excitability. Extracellular recordings of Schaffer collateral fiber volleys confirmed a decrease in afferent excitability, with decreased fiber volley amplitudes and increased latencies during HFS. To determine the mechanism responsible for fiber volley changes, we recorded antidromic action potentials in single CA3 pyramidal neurons evoked by stimulating Schaffer collateral axons. During HFS, individual action potentials decreased in amplitude and increased in latency, and these changes were accompanied by a large increase in the probability of action potential failure. Time derivative and phase-plane analyses indicated decreases in both axon initial segment and somato-dendritic components of CA3 neuron action potentials. Our results indicate that decreased presynaptic axon excitability contributes to depression of excitatory synaptic transmission during HFS at synapses between Schaffer collaterals and CA1 pyramidal neurons. PMID:22773781

  3. SKF83959 suppresses excitatory synaptic transmission in rat hippocampus via a dopamine receptor-independent mechanism.

    PubMed

    Chu, Hong-Yuan; Wu, Qianqian; Zhou, Shanglin; Cao, Xiaohua; Zhang, Ao; Jin, Guo-Zhang; Hu, Guo-Yuan; Zhen, Xuechu

    2011-08-01

    Dopamine (DA) profoundly modulates excitatory synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity in the brain. In the present study the effects of SKF83959, the selective agonist of phosphatidylinositol (PI)-linked D(1) -like receptor, on the excitatory synaptic transmission were investigated in rat hippocampus. SKF83959 (10-100 ?M) reversibly suppressed the field excitatory postsynaptic potential (fEPSP) elicited by stimulating the Schaffer's collateral-commissural fibers in CA1 area of hippocampal slices. However, the inhibition was not blocked by the D(1) receptor antagonist SCH23390, the D(2) receptor antagonist raclopride, the 5-HT(2A/2C) receptor antagonist mesulergine, or the ?(1) -adrenoceptor antagonist prazosin. In addition, SKF83959 inhibited the afferent volley and significantly reduced the paired-pulse facilitation ratios. In dissociated hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons, SKF83959 had no detectable effect on glutamate-induced currents but potently inhibited voltage-activated Na(+) current (IC50 value = 26.9 ± 1.0 ?M), which was not blocked by SCH23390 or by intracellular dialysis of GDP-?-S. These results demonstrate that SKF83959 suppressed the excitatory synaptic transmission in hippocampal CA1 area, which was independent of D(1) -like receptor. The mechanism underlying the effect could be mainly inhibition of Na(+) channel in the afferent fibers. The suppression of excitatory synaptic transmission and the Na(+) channel by SKF83959 may contribute to its therapeutic benefits in Parkinson's disease. PMID:21538463

  4. Turn Down That Noise: Synaptic Encoding of Afferent SNR in a Single Spiking Neuron.

    PubMed

    Afshar, Saeed; George, Libin; Thakur, Chetan Singh; Tapson, Jonathan; van Schaik, André; de Chazal, Philip; Hamilton, Tara Julia

    2015-04-01

    We have added a simplified neuromorphic model of Spike Time Dependent Plasticity (STDP) to the previously described Synapto-dendritic Kernel Adapting Neuron (SKAN), a hardware efficient neuron model capable of learning spatio-temporal spike patterns. The resulting neuron model is the first to perform synaptic encoding of afferent signal-to-noise ratio in addition to the unsupervised learning of spatio-temporal spike patterns. The neuron model is particularly suitable for implementation in digital neuromorphic hardware as it does not use any complex mathematical operations and uses a novel shift-based normalization approach to achieve synaptic homeostasis. The neuron's noise compensation properties are characterized and tested on random spatio-temporal spike patterns as well as a noise corrupted subset of the zero images of the MNIST handwritten digit dataset. Results show the simultaneously learning common patterns in its input data while dynamically weighing individual afferents based on their signal to noise ratio. Despite its simplicity the interesting behaviors of the neuron model and the resulting computational power may also offer insights into biological systems. PMID:25910252

  5. Synaptic actions of peripheral nerve impulses upon Deiters neurones via the mossy fibre afferents

    PubMed Central

    Allen, G. I.; Sabah, N. H.; Toyama, K.

    1972-01-01

    1. The cerebellar integration of sensory inputs to Deiters neurones was investigated in decerebrate cats. In some preparations decerebration was combined with transection of the olivocerebellar fibres. 2. In the latter preparations peripheral nerve impulses generally produced a response consisting of a sequence of the following post-synaptic potentials: (i) an initial e.p.s.p. (d1), (ii) early i.p.s.p. (h1), (iii) later i.p.s.p. (h2). 3. The mean latencies of d1, h1 and h2 were 5·7, 7·3 and 9·8 msec from the forelimb nerves, and 7·5, 9·0 and 13·4 msec from the hind limb nerves, respectively. 4. The stimulus intensity—response relation indicates that the Group I muscle afferents as well as the low threshold cutaneous afferents contribute to the response. 5. In the preparations with the intact inferior olive there were additional components of the post-synaptic potentials: a later e.p.s.p. (d2) and another later i.p.s.p. (h3), their mean latencies being 15·3 and 19·7 msec from the forelimb nerves, and 18·0 and 21·3 msec from the hind limb nerves, respectively. 6. The d1 and h2 components were attributed to the mossy fibre afferents and d2 and h3 to the climbing fibres; d1 and d2 were due to excitation through the collaterals of the mossy and climbing fibres, and h2 and h3 to inhibition from Purkyně cells activated by the mossy and climbing fibres, respectively. h1 was too early to be produced through the cerebellum, and was probably mediated by inhibitory neurones in the reticular formation. ImagesPlate 1 PMID:4563728

  6. What is transmitted in "synaptic transmission"?

    PubMed

    Montagna, Erik; de Azevedo, Adriana M S; Romano, Camilla; Ranvaud, Ronald

    2010-06-01

    Even students that obtain a high grade in neurophysiology often carry away a serious misconception concerning the final result of the complex set of events that follows the arrival of an action potential at the presynaptic terminal. The misconception consists in considering that "at a synapse, information is passed on from one neuron to the next" is equivalent to (and often expressed explicitly as) "the action potential passes from one neuron to the next." More than half of four groups of students who were asked to comment on an excerpt from a recent physiology textbook that openly stated the misconception had no clear objection to the text presented. We propose that the first culprit in generating this misconception is the term "synaptic transmission," which promotes the notion of transferring something or passing something along (implicitly unchanged). To avoid establishing this misconception, the first simple suggestion is to use words like "synaptic integration" rather than "synaptic transmission" right from the start. More generally, it would be important to focus on the function of synaptic events rather than on rote listing of all the numerous steps that are known to occur, which are so complex as to saturate the mind of the student. PMID:20522908

  7. Synaptic depression in the CA1 region of freely behaving mice is highly dependent on afferent stimulation parameters

    PubMed Central

    Goh, Jinzhong J.; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise

    2012-01-01

    Persistent synaptic plasticity has been subjected to intense study in the decades since it was first described. Occurring in the form of long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD), it shares many cellular and molecular properties with hippocampus-dependent forms of persistent memory. Recent reports of both LTP and LTD occurring endogenously under specific learning conditions provide further support that these forms of synaptic plasticity may comprise the cellular correlates of memory. Most studies of synaptic plasticity are performed using in vitro or in vivo preparations where patterned electrical stimulation of afferent fibers is implemented to induce changes in synaptic strength. This strategy has proven very effective in inducing LTP, even under in vivo conditions. LTD in vivo has proven more elusive: although LTD occurs endogenously under specific learning conditions in both rats and mice, its induction has not been successfully demonstrated with afferent electrical stimulation alone. In this study we screened a large spectrum of protocols that are known to induce LTD either in hippocampal slices or in the intact rat hippocampus, to clarify if LTD can be induced by sole afferent stimulation in the mouse CA1 region in vivo. Low frequency stimulation at 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, or 10 Hz given in the range of 100 through 1800 pulses produced, at best, short-term depression (STD) that lasted for up to 60 min. Varying the administration pattern of the stimuli (e.g., 900 pulses given twice at 5 min intervals), or changing the stimulation intensity did not improve the persistency of synaptic depression. LTD that lasts for at least 24 h occurs under learning conditions in mice. We conclude that a coincidence of factors, such as afferent activity together with neuromodulatory inputs, play a decisive role in the enablement of LTD under more naturalistic (e.g., learning) conditions. PMID:23355815

  8. Multiple clusters of release sites formed by individual thalamic afferents onto cortical interneurons ensure reliable transmission

    PubMed Central

    Bagnall, Martha W.; Hull, Court; Bushong, Eric A.; Ellisman, Mark H.; Scanziani, Massimo

    2012-01-01

    Summary Thalamic afferents supply the cortex with sensory information by contacting both excitatory neurons and inhibitory interneurons. Interestingly, thalamic contacts with interneurons constitute such a powerful synapse that even one afferent can fire interneurons, thereby driving feedforward inhibition. However, the spatial representation of this potent synapse on interneuron dendrites is poorly understood. Using Ca imaging and electron microscopy we show that an individual thalamic afferent forms multiple contacts with the interneuronal proximal dendritic arbor, preferentially near branch points. More contacts are correlated with larger amplitude synaptic responses. Each contact, consisting of a single bouton, can release up to 7 vesicles simultaneously, resulting in graded and reliable Ca transients. Computational modeling indicates that the release of multiple vesicles at each contact minimally reduces the efficiency of the thalamic afferent in exciting the interneuron. This strategy preserves the spatial representation of thalamocortical inputs across the dendritic arbor over a wide range of release conditions. PMID:21745647

  9. Data-driven modeling of synaptic transmission and integration.

    PubMed

    Rothman, Jason S; Silver, R Angus

    2014-01-01

    In this chapter, we describe how to create mathematical models of synaptic transmission and integration. We start with a brief synopsis of the experimental evidence underlying our current understanding of synaptic transmission. We then describe synaptic transmission at a particular glutamatergic synapse in the mammalian cerebellum, the mossy fiber to granule cell synapse, since data from this well-characterized synapse can provide a benchmark comparison for how well synaptic properties are captured by different mathematical models. This chapter is structured by first presenting the simplest mathematical description of an average synaptic conductance waveform and then introducing methods for incorporating more complex synaptic properties such as nonlinear voltage dependence of ionotropic receptors, short-term plasticity, and stochastic fluctuations. We restrict our focus to excitatory synaptic transmission, but most of the modeling approaches discussed here can be equally applied to inhibitory synapses. Our data-driven approach will be of interest to those wishing to model synaptic transmission and network behavior in health and disease. PMID:24560150

  10. Data-Driven Modeling of Synaptic Transmission and Integration

    PubMed Central

    Rothman, Jason S.; Silver, R. Angus

    2016-01-01

    In this chapter, we describe how to create mathematical models of synaptic transmission and integration. We start with a brief synopsis of the experimental evidence underlying our current understanding of synaptic transmission. We then describe synaptic transmission at a particular glutamatergic synapse in the mammalian cerebellum, the mossy fiber to granule cell synapse, since data from this well-characterized synapse can provide a benchmark comparison for how well synaptic properties are captured by different mathematical models. This chapter is structured by first presenting the simplest mathematical description of an average synaptic conductance waveform and then introducing methods for incorporating more complex synaptic properties such as nonlinear voltage dependence of ionotropic receptors, short-term plasticity, and stochastic fluctuations. We restrict our focus to excitatory synaptic transmission, but most of the modeling approaches discussed here can be equally applied to inhibitory synapses. Our data-driven approach will be of interest to those wishing to model synaptic transmission and network behavior in health and disease. PMID:24560150

  11. Synaptic actions of peripheral nerve impulses upon Deiters neurones via the climbing fibre afferents

    PubMed Central

    Allen, G. I.; Sabah, N. H.; Toyama, K.

    1972-01-01

    1. The cerebellar integration of sensory inputs to Deiters neurones was studied in cats under Nembutal anaesthesia. 2. Stimulation of peripheral nerves produced in the Deiters neurones a sequence of an initial excitatory post-synaptic potential (e.p.s.p.) and a later inhibitory post-synaptic potential (i.p.s.p.), or a relatively small e.p.s.p. 3. The Deiters neurones were classified as forelimb (FL)- or hind limb (HL)-type cells according to the location of the most effective peripheral nerve. In the FL cells stimulation of the forelimb nerves produced the e.p.s.p.—i.p.s.p. sequence (dominant response), while stimulation of the hind limb nerves was ineffective or produced the small e.p.s.p. (non-dominant response). In contrast, in the HL cells the non-dominant response was evoked from the forelimb nerves, and the dominant response from the hind limb nerves. 4. The stimulus intensity—response relation indicates that Group I and II muscle afferents and low and high threshold cutaneous afferents contribute to the dominant and non-dominant responses. 5. Antidromic identification of these Deiters neurones revealed that 90% of the HL cells and 85% of the FL cells project to the lumbo-sacral and cervico-thoracic segments of the spinal cord, respectively, while 10% of the HL cells and 15% of the FL cells innervate the cervico-thoracic and lumbo-sacral segments, respectively. 6. The mean latency of the e.p.s.p. evoked from the forelimb nerves was 14 msec in the FL cells and 13 msec in the HL cells, and the latency of the e.p.s.p. evoked from the hind limb nerves was 17 msec in the FL cells and 18 msec in the HL cells. The later i.p.s.p. regularly followed the onset of the e.p.s.p. with a delay of 3-5 msec. 7. The dominant and non-dominant responses in both types of cells exhibited the following three characteristic features: (i) a strong depression after conditioning stimulation of the inferior olive, (ii) an increase of the inferior olivary excitability during the responses, and (iii) a striking frequency depression with stimulation at relatively low frequency (5-10/sec). 8. Consequently it was concluded that all of the responses were produced through the climbing fibres originating from the inferior olive, the i.p.s.p.s due to inhibition from Purkyně cells activated by the climbing fibres and the e.p.s.p.s due to excitation from the collaterals of the climbing fibres. PMID:4563727

  12. Synaptic adhesion molecule IgSF11 regulates synaptic transmission and plasticity.

    PubMed

    Jang, Seil; Oh, Daeyoung; Lee, Yeunkum; Hosy, Eric; Shin, Hyewon; van Riesen, Christoph; Whitcomb, Daniel; Warburton, Julia M; Jo, Jihoon; Kim, Doyoun; Kim, Sun Gyun; Um, Seung Min; Kwon, Seok-Kyu; Kim, Myoung-Hwan; Roh, Junyeop Daniel; Woo, Jooyeon; Jun, Heejung; Lee, Dongmin; Mah, Won; Kim, Hyun; Kaang, Bong-Kiun; Cho, Kwangwook; Rhee, Jeong-Seop; Choquet, Daniel; Kim, Eunjoon

    2016-01-01

    Synaptic adhesion molecules regulate synapse development and plasticity through mechanisms that include trans-synaptic adhesion and recruitment of diverse synaptic proteins. We found that the immunoglobulin superfamily member 11 (IgSF11), a homophilic adhesion molecule that preferentially expressed in the brain, is a dual-binding partner of the postsynaptic scaffolding protein PSD-95 and AMPA glutamate receptors (AMPARs). IgSF11 required PSD-95 binding for its excitatory synaptic localization. In addition, IgSF11 stabilized synaptic AMPARs, as determined by IgSF11 knockdown-induced suppression of AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission and increased surface mobility of AMPARs, measured by high-throughput, single-molecule tracking. IgSF11 deletion in mice led to the suppression of AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission in the dentate gyrus and long-term potentiation in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. IgSF11 did not regulate the functional characteristics of AMPARs, including desensitization, deactivation or recovery. These results suggest that IgSF11 regulates excitatory synaptic transmission and plasticity through its tripartite interactions with PSD-95 and AMPARs. PMID:26595655

  13. The optimal neural strategy for a stable motor task requires a compromise between level of muscle cocontraction and synaptic gain of afferent feedback.

    PubMed

    Dideriksen, Jakob L; Negro, Francesco; Farina, Dario

    2015-09-01

    Increasing joint stiffness by cocontraction of antagonist muscles and compensatory reflexes are neural strategies to minimize the impact of unexpected perturbations on movement. Combining these strategies, however, may compromise steadiness, as elements of the afferent input to motor pools innervating antagonist muscles are inherently negatively correlated. Consequently, a high afferent gain and active contractions of both muscles may imply negatively correlated neural drives to the muscles and thus an unstable limb position. This hypothesis was systematically explored with a novel computational model of the peripheral nervous system and the mechanics of one limb. Two populations of motor neurons received synaptic input from descending drive, spinal interneurons, and afferent feedback. Muscle force, simulated based on motor unit activity, determined limb movement that gave rise to afferent feedback from muscle spindles and Golgi tendon organs. The results indicated that optimal steadiness was achieved with low synaptic gain of the afferent feedback. High afferent gains during cocontraction implied increased levels of common drive in the motor neuron outputs, which were negatively correlated across the two populations, constraining instability of the limb. Increasing the force acting on the joint and the afferent gain both effectively minimized the impact of an external perturbation, and suboptimal adjustment of the afferent gain could be compensated by muscle cocontraction. These observations show that selection of the strategy for a given contraction implies a compromise between steadiness and effectiveness of compensations to perturbations. This indicates that a task-dependent selection of neural strategy for steadiness is necessary when acting in different environments. PMID:26203102

  14. Nitric Oxide Alters GABAergic Synaptic Transmission in Cultured Hippocampal Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zanelli, Santina; Naylor, Martha; Kapur, Jaideep

    2009-01-01

    Nitric oxide (NO) production increases during hypoxia/ischemia-reperfusion in the immature brain and is associated with neurotoxicity. NO at physiologic concentrations has been shown to modulate GABAergic (gamma-aminobutyric acid) synaptic transmission in the adult brain. However, the effects of neurotoxic concentrations of NO (relevant to hypoxia-ischemia) on GABAergic synaptic transmission remain unknown. The present study tests the hypothesis that nNOS is expressed at GABAergic synapses and that exposure to neurotoxic concentrations of NO results in enhanced GABAergic synaptic transmission in cultured hippocampal neurons (days-in-vitro 10-14) prepared from fetal rats. Using double immunocytochemistry techniques, we were able to demonstrate that nNOS is co-localized to both presynaptic and postsynaptic markers of GABAergic synapses. The effects of NO on GABAergic synaptic transmission were then studied using whole cell patch-clamp electrophysiology. Spontaneous and miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSCS and mIPSCs) were recorded prior to and after exposure to 250 ?M of the NO donor diethyleneamine/nitric oxide adduct (DETA-NO). Exposure to DETA-NO resulted in increased sIPSCs and mIPSCs frequency, indicating that neurotoxic concentrations of NO enhance GABAergic synaptic transmission in cultured hippocampal neurons. Because GABA synapses appear to be excitatory in the immature brain, this effect may contribute to overall enhanced synaptic transmission and hyperexcitability. We speculate that NO represents one of the mechanisms by which hypoxia-ischemia increases seizure susceptibility in the immature brain. PMID:19699726

  15. Synaptic unreliability facilitates information transmission in balanced cortical populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gatys, Leon A.; Ecker, Alexander S.; Tchumatchenko, Tatjana; Bethge, Matthias

    2015-06-01

    Synaptic unreliability is one of the major sources of biophysical noise in the brain. In the context of neural information processing, it is a central question how neural systems can afford this unreliability. Here we examine how synaptic noise affects signal transmission in cortical circuits, where excitation and inhibition are thought to be tightly balanced. Surprisingly, we find that in this balanced state synaptic response variability actually facilitates information transmission, rather than impairing it. In particular, the transmission of fast-varying signals benefits from synaptic noise, as it instantaneously increases the amount of information shared between presynaptic signal and postsynaptic current. Furthermore we show that the beneficial effect of noise is based on a very general mechanism which contrary to stochastic resonance does not reach an optimum at a finite noise level.

  16. Synaptic transmission at retinal ribbon synapses

    PubMed Central

    Heidelberger, Ruth; Thoreson, Wallace B.; Witkovsky, Paul

    2006-01-01

    The molecular organization of ribbon synapses in photoreceptors and ON bipolar cells is reviewed in relation to the process of neurotransmitter release. The interactions between ribbon synapse-associated proteins, synaptic vesicle fusion machinery and the voltage-gated calcium channels that gate transmitter release at ribbon synapses are discussed in relation to the process of synaptic vesicle exocytosis. We describe structural and mechanistic specializations that permit the ON bipolar cell to release transmitter at a much higher rate than the photoreceptor does, under in vivo conditions. We also consider the modulation of exocytosis at photoreceptor synapses, with an emphasis on the regulation of calcium channels. PMID:16027025

  17. Synaptic transmission block by presynaptic injection of oligomeric amyloid beta.

    PubMed

    Moreno, Herman; Yu, Eunah; Pigino, Gustavo; Hernandez, Alejandro I; Kim, Natalia; Moreira, Jorge E; Sugimori, Mutsuyuki; Llinás, Rodolfo R

    2009-04-01

    Early Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathophysiology is characterized by synaptic changes induced by degradation products of amyloid precursor protein (APP). The exact mechanisms of such modulation are unknown. Here, we report that nanomolar concentrations of intraaxonal oligomeric (o)Abeta42, but not oAbeta40 or extracellular oAbeta42, acutely inhibited synaptic transmission at the squid giant synapse. Further characterization of this phenotype demonstrated that presynaptic calcium currents were unaffected. However, electron microscopy experiments revealed diminished docked synaptic vesicles in oAbeta42-microinjected terminals, without affecting clathrin-coated vesicles. The molecular events of this modulation involved casein kinase 2 and the synaptic vesicle rapid endocytosis pathway. These findings open the possibility of a new therapeutic target aimed at ameliorating synaptic dysfunction in AD. PMID:19304802

  18. SNARE proteins contribute to calcium cooperativity of synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Stewart, Bryan A.; Mohtashami, Mahmood; Trimble, William S.; Boulianne, Gabrielle L.

    2000-01-01

    A hallmark of calcium-triggered synaptic transmission is the cooperative relationship between calcium and the amount of transmitter released. This relationship is thought to be important for improving the efficiency of synaptic vesicle exocytosis. Although it is generally held that cooperativity arises from the interaction of multiple calcium ions with a single calcium-sensing molecule, the precise molecular basis of this phenomenon is not known. The SNARE proteins are known to be critical for synaptic vesicle exocytosis. We therefore tested for a contribution of SNARE proteins to cooperativity by genetically reducing the levels of syntaxin IA and neuronal-synaptobrevin in Drosophila. Surprisingly, we found that reducing these SNARE proteins also reduced Ca2+ cooperativity. Thus, SNARE proteins are important for determining the cooperative relationship between calcium and synaptic transmission. PMID:11095753

  19. Kinetic model of excitatory synaptic transmission to cerebellar Purkinje cells.

    PubMed

    Marienhagen, J; Keller, B U; Zippelius, A

    1997-09-21

    We present a minimal kinetic model for excitatory synaptic transmission to cerebellar Purkinje cells. The main components are a kinetic model for a single glutamate receptor, which is calibrated with the help of patch clamp data, and a mean field approximation for the dynamics of a population of channels, which generate an EPSC. The resulting minimal model of the parallel fiber-Purkinje cell synapse is used to estimate the dynamics of glutamate in the synaptic cleft and to clarify the role of receptor desensitization in synaptic transmission. We also apply the model to different aspects of synaptic modulation, like long-term depression and potentiation by pharmacological application of ampakines. In the framework of the minimal model these effects can be understood as the result of modified receptor kinetics. PMID:9379674

  20. Drosophila Neuroligin 2 is Required Presynaptically and Postsynaptically for proper Synaptic Differentiation and Synaptic Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yu-Chi; Lin, Yong Qi; Banerjee, Swati; Venken, Koen; Li, Jingjun; Ismat, Afshan; Chen, Kuchuan; Duraine, Lita; Bellen, Hugo J.; Bhat, Manzoor A.

    2012-01-01

    Trans-synaptic adhesion between Neurexins and Neuroligins is thought to be required for proper synapse organization and modulation, and mutations in several human NEUROLIGINS have shown association with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Here we report the generation and phenotypic characterization of Drosophila neuroligin 2 (dnlg2) mutants. Loss of dnlg2 results in reduced bouton numbers, aberrant pre- and post-synaptic development at neuromuscular junctions (NMJs), and impaired synaptic transmission. In dnlg2 mutants, the evoked responses are decreased in amplitude, whereas the total active zone numbers at the NMJ are comparable to wild type, suggesting a decrease in the release probability. Ultrastructurally, the presynaptic active zone number per bouton area and the postsynaptic density area are both increased in dnlg2 mutants, whereas the subsynaptic reticulum (SSR) is reduced in volume. We show that both pre- and post-synaptic expression of Dnlg2 is required to restore synaptic growth and function in dnlg2 mutants. Post-synaptic expression of Dnlg2 in dnlg2 mutants and wild type leads to reduced bouton growth whereas pre- and post-synaptic overexpression in wild type animals results in synaptic overgrowth. Since Neuroligins have been shown to bind to Neurexins, we created double mutants. These mutants are viable and display phenotypes that closely resemble those of dnlg2 and dnrx single mutants. Our results provide compelling evidence that Dnlg2 functions both pre- and post-synaptically together with Neurexin to determine the proper number of boutons as well as the number of active zones and size of synaptic densities during the development of NMJs. PMID:23136438

  1. Odor-Specific Habituation Arises from Interaction of Afferent Synaptic Adaptation and Intrinsic Synaptic Potentiation in Olfactory Cortex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Linster, Christiane; Menon, Alka V.; Singh, Christopher Y.; Wilson, Donald A.

    2009-01-01

    Segmentation of target odorants from background odorants is a fundamental computational requirement for the olfactory system and is thought to be behaviorally mediated by olfactory habituation memory. Data from our laboratory have shown that odor-specific adaptation in piriform neurons, mediated at least partially by synaptic adaptation between…

  2. John Eccles' pioneering role in understanding central synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Burke, Robert E

    2006-01-01

    This chapter deals with the central role that Sir John Eccles played in the elucidation of the mechanisms of synaptic transmission within the central nervous system during the three decades between the late 1930s and 1966. His seminal discoveries involved studies of synaptic input to spinal motoneurons using intracellular recording via glass micropipettes after their introduction in the late 1940s. After defending the hypothesis that electrical currents alone explained central synaptic events, his observations of reversal potentials and sensitivity to ion injections instantly converted Eccles to the idea that central synapses generate postsynaptic potentials, designated IPSPs and EPSPs, by liberating chemical transmitters. He and his collaborators used pharmacological manipulations of recurrent inhibition to support the idea that a given neuron liberates the same chemical transmitter substance at all of its synapses, which he called "Dale's Principle". His team worked out the mechanisms and spinal circuits underlying disynaptic and recurrent inhibition, as well as those of presynaptic inhibition. Not content with the view that central synapses were static entities, Eccles also made seminal observations on synaptic plasticity induced by alterations in use and disuse. Although his firmly held belief that the extensive dendritic trees of motoneurons were essentially irrelevant to synaptic events at the soma was later refuted by others in the mid-1960s, Eccles stands as a towering figure in the history of neuroscience. His prodigious energy and commanding intellect gave the field of central synaptic transmission the conceptual bases that have guided it for over 40 years. PMID:16647800

  3. Measuring action potential-evoked transmission at individual synaptic contacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nauen, David W.; Bi, Guo-Qiang

    2012-06-01

    In the neuronal culture experimental system, the total synaptic connection between two neurons can consist of large numbers of synaptic sites, each behaving probabilistically. Studies of synaptic function with paired recordings typically consider the summed response across all of these sites and from this infer the average response. Understanding of synaptic transmission and plasticity could be improved by examination of activity at as few synaptic sites as possible. To this end, we develop a system for recording responses from individual contacts. It relies on a precisely regulated pneumatic/hydrostatic pressure system to create a microenvironment within which individual synapses are active, and an acoustic signature method to monitor the stability of this microenvironment noninvasively. With this method we are able to record action potential-evoked postsynaptic currents consistent with individual quanta. The approach does not distort synaptic current waveforms and permits stable recording for several hours. The method is applied to address mechanisms of short-term plasticity, the variability of latency at individual synaptic sites and, in a preliminary experiment, the independence of nearby synapses on the same axon.

  4. Glycine Receptor-mediated Synaptic Transmission Regulates the Maturation of Ganglion cell Synaptic Connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Hong-ping; Tian, Ning

    2010-01-01

    It is well documented that neuronal activity is required for the developmental segregation of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) synaptic connectivity with ON and OFF bipolar cells in mammalian retina. Our recent study showed that light deprivation preferentially blocked the developmental RGC dendritic redistribution from the center to sublamina a of the IPL. To determine whether OFF signals in the visual stimulation are required for OFF RGC dendritic development, the light evoked responses and dendritic stratification patterns of RGCs in Spastic mutant mice, in which the OFF signal transmission in the rod pathway is largely blocked due to a reduction of glycine receptor (GlyR) expression, were quantitatively studied at different ages and rearing conditions. The dendritic distribution in the IPL of these mice was indistinguishable from wild type controls at the age of P12. However, the adult Spastic mutants had altered RGC light evoked synaptic inputs from ON and OFF pathways, which could not be mimicked by pharmacologically blocking of glycinergic synaptic transmission on age-matched wild type animals. Spastic mutation also blocked the developmental redistribution of RGC dendrites from the center to the sublamina a of the IPL, which mimicked the effects induced by light deprivation on wild type animals. Moreover, light deprivation of the Spastic mutants had no additional impacts on the RGC dendritic distribution and light response patterns. We interpret these results as that visual stimulation regulates the maturation of RGC synaptic activity and connectivity primarily through GlyR-mediated synaptic transmission. PMID:18425804

  5. Estrogen facilitates spinal cord synaptic transmission via membrane-bound estrogen receptors: implications for pain hypersensitivity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yan; Xiao, Xiao; Zhang, Xiao-Meng; Zhao, Zhi-Qi; Zhang, Yu-Qiu

    2012-09-28

    Recent evidence suggests that estrogen is synthesized in the spinal dorsal horn and plays a role in nociceptive processes. However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying these effects remain unclear. Using electrophysiological, biochemical, and morphological techniques, we here demonstrate that 17?-estradiol (E2), a major form of estrogen, can directly modulate spinal cord synaptic transmission by 1) enhancing NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission in dorsal horn neurons, 2) increasing glutamate release from primary afferent terminals, 3) increasing dendritic spine density in cultured spinal cord dorsal horn neurons, and 4) potentiating spinal cord long term potentiation (LTP) evoked by high frequency stimulation (HFS) of Lissauer's tract. Notably, E2-BSA, a ligand that acts only on membrane estrogen receptors, can mimic E2-induced facilitation of HFS-LTP, suggesting a nongenomic action of this neurosteroid. Consistently, cell surface biotinylation demonstrated that three types of ERs (ER?, ER?, and GPER1) are localized on the plasma membrane of dorsal horn neurons. Furthermore, the ER? and ER? antagonist ICI 182,780 completely abrogates the E2-induced facilitation of LTP. ER? (but not ER?) activation can recapitulate E2-induced persistent increases in synaptic transmission (NMDA-dependent) and dendritic spine density, indicating a critical role of ER? in spinal synaptic plasticity. E2 also increases the phosphorylation of ERK, PKA, and NR2B, and spinal HFS-LTP is prevented by blockade of PKA, ERK, or NR2B activation. Finally, HFS increases E2 release in spinal cord slices, which can be prevented by aromatase inhibitor androstatrienedione, suggesting activity-dependent local synthesis and release of endogenous E2. PMID:22869379

  6. Presynaptic muscarinic control of glutamatergic synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Buño, W; Cabezas, C; Fernández de Sevilla, D

    2006-01-01

    The hippocampus receives cholinergic projections from the medial septal nucleus and Broca's diagonal band that terminate in the CA1, CA3, and dentate gyrus regions (Frotscher and Leranth, 1985). Glutamatergic synapses between CA3 and CA1 pyramidal neurons are presynaptically inhibited by acetylcholine (ACh), via activation of muscarinic ACh receptors (mAChRs) at the terminals of Schaffer collaterals (SCs) (Hounsgaard, 1978; Fernández de Sevilla et al., 2002, 2003). There are two types of SC-CA1 pyramidal neuron synapses. One type, called functional synapse, shows postsynaptic alpha- amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionate (AMPA)-receptor mediated currents at resting potential (Vm) and both AMPA and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR)-mediated currents when depolarized. The other type, termed silent synapse, only displays postsynaptic NMDAR-mediated currents at depolarized Vms, but does not respond at the resting Vm (Isaac et al., 1995). Using hippocampal slices obtained from young Wistar rats, we examined the effects of activation of cholinergic afferents at the stratum oriens/alveus on excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) evoked in CA1 pyramidal neurons by stimulation of SCs. We also tested the action of the nonhydrolyzable cholinergic agonist carbamylcholine chloride (CCh) on EPSCs evoked by minimal stimulation of SCs (which activates a single or very few synapses) in functional and silent synapses. PMID:17192666

  7. The components of synaptic potentials evoked in cat spinal motoneurones by impulses in single group Ia afferents.

    PubMed Central

    Jack, J J; Redman, S J; Wong, K

    1981-01-01

    1. Excitatory post-synaptic potentials (e.p.s.p.s) were evoked in cat spinal motoneurones by impulses in single group Ia afferent fibres. The probability density of the fluctuations in peak amplitude of each e.p.s.p. was calculated from the recorded peak amplitude and the probability density of the recording noise. 2. Most e.p.s.p.s fluctuated between different components (i.e. individual e.p.s.p.s of a particular discrete amplitude) with peak amplitudes which were integer multiples of the increment between successive components. The average peak amplitude of this incremental e.p.s.p. was about 90 microV for e.p.s.p.s generated at or near the soma. 3. In general, the probability density of the peak amplitude could not be described using Poisson or binomial distributions. 4. For many e.p.s.p.s the complete time course of each component could be calculated. There was no variability in the amplitude of these components nor in their latency of onset. For some e.p.s.p.s there were differences in the latency and time course of the components. 5. The increments between successive components of e.p.s.p. generated proximally were no larger (at the soma) than the corresponding increments for e.p.s.p.s generated at more distal dendritic sites. 6. These results and those from subsequent papers (Jack, Redman & Wong, 1981; Hirst, Redman & Wong, 1981) reinforce earlier suggestions that each bouton behaves in an all-or-nothing manner with respect to post-synaptic effect, and the probability of failure varies at different boutons arising from the same afferent. PMID:6279826

  8. Progesterone Regulation of Synaptic Transmission and Plasticity in Rodent Hippocampus

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foy, Michael R.; Akopian, Garnik; Thompson, Richard F.

    2008-01-01

    Ovarian hormones influence memory formation by eliciting changes in neural activity. The effects of various concentrations of progesterone (P4) on synaptic transmission and plasticity associated with long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) were studied using in vitro hippocampal slices. Extracellular studies show that the…

  9. Progesterone Regulation of Synaptic Transmission and Plasticity in Rodent Hippocampus

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foy, Michael R.; Akopian, Garnik; Thompson, Richard F.

    2008-01-01

    Ovarian hormones influence memory formation by eliciting changes in neural activity. The effects of various concentrations of progesterone (P4) on synaptic transmission and plasticity associated with long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) were studied using in vitro hippocampal slices. Extracellular studies show that the…

  10. Henry Dale and the discovery of chemical synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Todman, Don

    2008-01-01

    Henry Dale received the Nobel prize in physiology or medicine in 1936 with Otto Loewi for their research which proved chemical synaptic transmission in the peripheral nervous system. Subsequently there was an extended period of controversy between advocates of chemical and electrical transmission before the chemical process was established in the central and peripheral nervous system. This debate and its final resolution was one of the most crucial in the history of neuroscience in the 20th century. PMID:18645249

  11. Effect of barbiturates on 'quantal' synaptic transmission in spinal motoneurones.

    PubMed

    Weakly, J N

    1969-09-01

    1. Monosynaptic excitatory post-synaptic potentials (EPSPs) produced in triceps surae motoneurones of the cat by stimulation of single afferent fibres in the muscle nerve were recorded with intracellular electrodes before and after the administration of thiopentone or pentobarbitone.2. The average amplitude of the ;unit' EPSP was 0.11-0.21 mV and remained unchanged after the administration of the barbiturates (10 mg/kg, I.V.).3. Mean quantum content (m) ranged from 1.9 to more than 5 before drug administration. The m was reduced by thiopentone (10 mg/kg, I.V.) and pentobarbitone (10 mg/kg, I.V.) by 23.1 and 24.7% respectively.4. The barbiturates, in the doses employed, produced no alterations in the input resistance of the motoneurone membrane or in the strength-duration relation obtained by passing depolarizing current pulses through the micro-electrode.5. It is concluded that the action of thiopentone and pentobarbitone, in the doses used, is confined to the presynaptic nerve terminals and results in a reduction in the amount of transmitter released by afferent impulses. PMID:4310944

  12. Cholinergic modulation of primary afferent glutamatergic transmission in rat medullary dorsal horn neurons.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Seok-Gwon; Choi, In-Sun; Cho, Jin-Hwa; Jang, Il-Sung

    2013-12-01

    Although muscarinic acetylcholine (mACh) receptors are expressed in trigeminal ganglia, it is still unknown whether mACh receptors modulate glutamatergic transmission from primary afferents onto medullary dorsal horn neurons. In this study, we have addressed the cholinergic modulation of primary afferent glutamatergic transmission using a conventional whole cell patch clamp technique. Glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were evoked from primary afferents by electrical stimulation of trigeminal tract and monosynaptic EPSCs were recorded from medullary dorsal horn neurons of rat horizontal brain stem slices. Muscarine and ACh reversibly and concentration-dependently decreased the amplitude of glutamatergic EPSCs and increased the paired-pulse ratio. In addition, muscarine reduced the frequency of miniature EPSCs without affecting the current amplitude, suggesting that muscarine acts presynaptically to decrease the probability of glutamate release onto medullary dorsal horn neurons. The muscarine-induced decrease of glutamatergic EPSCs was significantly occluded by methoctramine or AF-DX116, M2 receptor antagonists, but not pirenzepine, J104129 and MT-3, selective M1, M3 and M4 receptor antagonists. The muscarine-induced decrease of glutamatergic EPSCs was highly dependent on the extracellular Ca2+ concentration. Physostigmine and clinically available acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, such as rivastigmine and donepezil, significantly shifted the concentration-inhibition relationship of ACh for glutamatergic EPSCs. These results suggest that muscarine acts on presynaptic M2 receptors to inhibit glutamatergic transmission by reducing the Ca2+ influx into primary afferent terminals, and that M2 receptor agonists and acetylcholinesterase inhibitors could be, at least, potential targets to reduce nociceptive transmission from orofacial tissues. PMID:23954675

  13. Rescue of tau-induced synaptic transmission pathology by paclitaxel

    PubMed Central

    Erez, Hadas; Shemesh, Or A.; Spira, Micha E.

    2014-01-01

    Behavioral and electrophysiological studies of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and other tauopathies have revealed that the onset of cognitive decline correlates better with synaptic dysfunctions than with hallmark pathologies such as extracellular amyloid-? plaques, intracellular hyperphosphorylated tau or neuronal loss. Recent experiments have also demonstrated that anti-cancer microtubule (MT)-stabilizing drugs can rescue tau-induced behavioral decline and hallmark neuron pathologies. Nevertheless, the mechanisms underlying tau-induced synaptic dysfunction as well as those involved in the rescue of cognitive decline by MTs-stabilizing drugs remain unclear. Here we began to study these mechanisms using the glutaminergic sensory-motoneuron synapse derived from Aplysia ganglia, electrophysiological methods, the expression of mutant-human tau (mt-htau) either pre or postsynaptically and the antimitotic drug paclitaxel. Expression of mt-htau in the presynaptic neurons led to reduced excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) amplitude generated by rested synapses within 3 days of mt-htau expression, and to deeper levels of homosynaptic depression. mt-htau-induced synaptic weakening correlated with reduced releasable presynaptic vesicle pools as revealed by the induction of asynchronous neurotransmitter release by hypertonic sucrose solution. Paclitaxel totally rescued tau-induced synaptic weakening by maintaining the availability of the presynaptic vesicle stores. Postsynaptic expression of mt-htau did not impair the above described synaptic-transmission parameters for up to 5 days. Along with earlier confocal microscope observations from our laboratory, these findings suggest that tau-induced synaptic dysfunction is the outcome of impaired axoplasmic transport and the ensuing reduction in the releasable presynaptic vesicle stores rather than the direct effects of mt-htau or paclitaxel on the synaptic release mechanisms. PMID:24574970

  14. Xyloside primed glycosaminoglycans alter hair bundle micromechanical coupling and synaptic transmission: Pharmacokinetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holman, Holly A.; Tran, Vy M.; Nguyen, Lynn Y.; Arungundram, Sailaja; Kalita, Mausam; Kuberan, Balagurunathan; Rabbitt, Richard D.

    2015-12-01

    Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) are ubiquitous in the inner ear, and disorders altering their structure or production often result in debilitating hearing and balance deficits. The specific mechanisms responsible for loss of hair-cell function are not well understood. We recently reported that introduction of a novel BODIPY conjugated xyloside (BX) into the endolymph primes fluorescent GAGs in vivo [6, 15]. Confocal and two-photon fluorescence imaging revealed rapid turnover and assembly of a glycocalyx enveloping the kinocilia and extending into the cupula, a structure that presumably serves as a mechanical link between the hair bundle and the cupula. Extracellular fluorescence was also observed around the basolateral surface of hair cells and surrounding afferent nerve projections into the crista. Single unit afferent recordings during mechanical hair bundle stimulation revealed temporary interruption of synaptic transmission following BX administration followed by recovery, demonstrating an essential role for GAGs in function of the hair cell synapse. In the present work we present a pharmacokinetic model to quantify the time course of BX primed GAG production and turnover in the ear.

  15. Orexin-A modulates excitatory synaptic transmission and neuronal excitability in the spinal cord substantia gelatinosa.

    PubMed

    Jeon, Younghoon; Park, Ki Bum; Pervin, Rokeya; Kim, Tae Wan; Youn, Dong-ho

    2015-09-14

    Although intrathecal orexin-A has been known to be antinociceptive in various pain models, the role of orexin-A in antinociception is not well characterized. In the present study, we examined whether orexin-A modulates primary afferent fiber-mediated or spontaneous excitatory synaptic transmission using transverse spinal cord slices with attached dorsal root. Bath-application of orexin-A (100nM) reduced the amplitude of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) evoked by electrical stimulation of A?- or C-primary afferent fibers. The magnitude of reduction was much larger for EPSCs evoked by polysynaptic C-fibers than polysynaptic A?-fibers, whereas it was similar in EPSCs evoked by monosynaptic A?- or C-fibers. SB674042, an orexin-1 receptor antagonist, but not EMPA, an orexin-2 receptor antagonist, significantly inhibited the orexin-A-induced reduction in EPSC amplitude from mono- or polysynaptic A?-fibers, as well as from mono- or polysynaptic C-fibers. Furthermore, orexin-A significantly increased the frequency of spontaneous EPSCs but not the amplitude. This increase was almost completely blocked by both SB674042 and EMPA. On the other hand, orexin-A produced membrane oscillations and inward currents in the SG neurons that were partially or completely inhibited by SB674042 or EMPA, respectively. Thus, this study suggests that the spinal actions of orexin-A underlie orexin-A-induced antinociceptive effects via different subtypes of orexin receptors. PMID:26254164

  16. Impaired glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the PKU brain.

    PubMed

    Martynyuk, A E; Glushakov, A V; Sumners, C; Laipis, P J; Dennis, D M; Seubert, C N

    2005-12-01

    This paper reviews recent results of our investigation of the mechanisms whereby hyperphenylalaninemia may cause brain dysfunction in classical phenylketonuria (PKU). Acute applications of L-Phe in rat and mouse hippocampal and cerebrocortical cultured neurons, at a range of concentrations found in PKU brain, significantly and reversibly depressed glutamatergic synaptic transmission by a combination of pre- and postsynaptic actions: (1) competition for the glycine-binding site of the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors; (2) attenuation of neurotransmitter release; (3) competition for the glutamate-binding site of (RS)-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropioinic acid and kainate (AMPA/kainate) receptors. Unlike L-Phe, its non-tyrosine metabolites, phenylacetic acid, phenylpyruvic acid, and phenyllactic acid, did not produce antiglutamatergic effects. L-Phe did not affect inhibitory gamma-aminobutyric (GABA)-ergic transmission. Consistent with this specific pattern of effects caused by L-Phe in neuronal cultures, the expression of NMDA receptor NR2A and AMPA receptor Glu1 and Glu2/3 subunits in brain of hyperphenylalaninemic PKU mice (Pah(enu2) strain) was significantly increased, whereas expression of the NMDA receptor NR2B subunit was decreased. There was no change in GABA alpha1 subunit expression. Considering the important role of glutamatergic synaptic transmission in normal brain development and function, these L-Phe-induced changes in glutamatergic synaptic transmission in PKU brain may be a critical element of the neurological symptoms of PKU. PMID:16153867

  17. Adenomatous Polyposis Coli Protein Deletion in Efferent Olivocochlear Neurons Perturbs Afferent Synaptic Maturation and Reduces the Dynamic Range of Hearing

    PubMed Central

    Hickman, Tyler T.; Liberman, M. Charles

    2015-01-01

    Normal hearing requires proper differentiation of afferent ribbon synapses between inner hair cells (IHCs) and spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs) that carry acoustic information to the brain. Within individual IHCs, presynaptic ribbons show a size gradient with larger ribbons on the modiolar face and smaller ribbons on the pillar face. This structural gradient is associated with a gradient of spontaneous rates and threshold sensitivity, which is essential for a wide dynamic range of hearing. Despite their importance for hearing, mechanisms that direct ribbon differentiation are poorly defined. We recently identified adenomatous polyposis coli protein (APC) as a key regulator of interneuronal synapse maturation. Here, we show that APC is required for ribbon size heterogeneity and normal cochlear function. Compared with wild-type littermates, APC conditional knock-out (cKO) mice exhibit decreased auditory brainstem responses. The IHC ribbon size gradient is also perturbed. Whereas the normal-developing IHCs display ribbon size gradients before hearing onset, ribbon sizes are aberrant in APC cKOs from neonatal ages on. Reporter expression studies show that the CaMKII-Cre used to delete the floxed APC gene is present in efferent olivocochlear (OC) neurons, not IHCs or SGNs. APC loss led to increased volumes and numbers of OC inhibitory dopaminergic boutons on neonatal SGN fibers. Our findings identify APC in efferent OC neurons as essential for regulating ribbon heterogeneity, dopaminergic terminal differentiation, and cochlear sensitivity. This APC effect on auditory epithelial cell synapses resembles interneuronal and nerve–muscle synapses, thereby defining a global role for APC in synaptic maturation in diverse cell types. Significance Statement This study identifies novel molecules and cellular interactions that are essential for the proper maturation of afferent ribbon synapses in sensory cells of the inner ear, and for normal hearing. PMID:26085645

  18. MPTP-meditated hippocampal dopamine deprivation modulates synaptic transmission and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity

    SciTech Connect

    Zhu Guoqi; Chen Ying; Huang Yuying; Li Qinglin; Behnisch, Thomas

    2011-08-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD)-like symptoms including learning deficits are inducible by 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). Therefore, it is possible that MPTP may disturb hippocampal memory processing by modulation of dopamine (DA)- and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. We demonstrate here that intraperitoneal (i.p.) MPTP injection reduces the number of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive neurons in the substantia nigra (SN) within 7 days. Subsequently, the TH expression level in SN and hippocampus and the amount of DA and its metabolite DOPAC in striatum and hippocampus decrease. DA depletion does not alter basal synaptic transmission and changes pair-pulse facilitation (PPF) of field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) only at the 30 ms inter-pulse interval. In addition, the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP) is impaired whereas the duration of long-term depression (LTD) becomes prolonged. Since both LTP and LTD depend critically on activation of NMDA and DA receptors, we also tested the effect of DA depletion on NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission. Seven days after MPTP injection, the NMDA receptor-mediated fEPSPs are decreased by about 23%. Blocking the NMDA receptor-mediated fEPSP does not mimic the MPTP-LTP. Only co-application of D1/D5 and NMDA receptor antagonists during tetanization resembled the time course of fEPSP potentiation as observed 7 days after i.p. MPTP injection. Together, our data demonstrate that MPTP-induced degeneration of DA neurons and the subsequent hippocampal DA depletion alter NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. - Highlights: > I.p. MPTP-injection mediates death of dopaminergic neurons. > I.p. MPTP-injection depletes DA and DOPAC in striatum and hippocampus. > I.p. MPTP-injection does not alter basal synaptic transmission. > Reduction of LTP and enhancement of LTD after i.p. MPTP-injection. > Attenuation of NMDA-receptors mediated fEPSPs after i.p. MPTP-injection.

  19. How do astrocytes shape synaptic transmission? Insights from electrophysiology

    PubMed Central

    Dallérac, Glenn; Chever, Oana; Rouach, Nathalie

    2013-01-01

    A major breakthrough in neuroscience has been the realization in the last decades that the dogmatic view of astroglial cells as being merely fostering and buffering elements of the nervous system is simplistic. A wealth of investigations now shows that astrocytes actually participate in the control of synaptic transmission in an active manner. This was first hinted by the intimate contacts glial processes make with neurons, particularly at the synaptic level, and evidenced using electrophysiological and calcium imaging techniques. Calcium imaging has provided critical evidence demonstrating that astrocytic regulation of synaptic efficacy is not a passive phenomenon. However, given that cellular activation is not only represented by calcium signaling, it is also crucial to assess concomitant mechanisms. We and others have used electrophysiological techniques to simultaneously record neuronal and astrocytic activity, thus enabling the study of multiple ionic currents and in depth investigation of neuro-glial dialogues. In the current review, we focus on the input such approach has provided in the understanding of astrocyte-neuron interactions underlying control of synaptic efficacy. PMID:24101894

  20. Regulation of information passing by synaptic transmission: a short review.

    PubMed

    Di Maio, Vito

    2008-08-15

    The largest part of information passed among neurons in the brain occurs by the means of chemical synapses connecting the axons of presynaptic neurons to the dendritic tree of the postsynaptic ones. In the present paper, the most relevant open problems related to the mechanisms of control of the information passing among neurons by synaptic transmission will be shortly reviewed. The "cross talking" between synapses, their mutual interactions and the control of the information flow between different areas of the dendritic tree will be also considered. The threshold mechanism based on the "reversal potential" will be considered for its role in the control of information transfer among neurons and also for its contribution to the information flow among different areas of the dendritic tree and to the computational ability of the single neuron. The concept of "competition for plasticity" will be proposed as a mechanism of competition based on the synaptic activation time. PMID:18586017

  1. From Synaptic Transmission to Cognition: An Intermediary Role for Dendritic Spines

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gonzalez-Burgos, Ignacio

    2012-01-01

    Dendritic spines are cytoplasmic protrusions that develop directly or indirectly from the filopodia of neurons. Dendritic spines mediate excitatory neurotransmission and they can isolate the electrical activity generated by synaptic impulses, enabling them to translate excitatory afferent information via several types of plastic changes, including…

  2. From Synaptic Transmission to Cognition: An Intermediary Role for Dendritic Spines

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gonzalez-Burgos, Ignacio

    2012-01-01

    Dendritic spines are cytoplasmic protrusions that develop directly or indirectly from the filopodia of neurons. Dendritic spines mediate excitatory neurotransmission and they can isolate the electrical activity generated by synaptic impulses, enabling them to translate excitatory afferent information via several types of plastic changes, including…

  3. An Engineered Metal Sensor Tunes the Kinetics of Synaptic Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Chantell S.; Ruhl, David A.

    2015-01-01

    The Ca2+ sensor synaptotagmin-1 (syt-1) regulates neurotransmitter release by interacting with anionic phospholipids. Here we test the idea that the intrinsic kinetics of syt–membrane interactions determine, in part, the time course of synaptic transmission. To tune the kinetics of this interaction, we grafted structural elements from the slowest isoform, syt-7, onto the fastest isoform, syt-1, resulting in a chimera with intermediate kinetic properties. Moreover, the chimera coupled a physiologically irrelevant metal, Sr2+, to membrane fusion in vitro. When substituted for syt-1 in mouse hippocampal neurons, the chimera slowed the kinetics of synaptic transmission. Neurons expressing the chimera also evinced rapid and efficient Sr2+ triggered release, in contrast to the weak response of neurons expressing syt-1. These findings reveal presynaptic sensor–membrane interactions as a major factor regulating the speed of the release machinery. Finally, the chimera failed to clamp the elevated spontaneous fusion rate exhibited by syt-1 KO neurons, indicating that the metal binding loops of syt-1 regulate the two modes of release by distinct mechanisms. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT In calcium, synaptotagmin-1 triggers neurotransmitter release by interacting with membranes. Here, we demonstrate that intrinsic properties of this interaction control the time course of synaptic transmission. We engineered a “chimera” using synaptotagmin-1 and elements of a slower isoform, synaptotagmin-7. When expressed in neurons, the chimera slowed the rate of neurotransmitter release. Furthermore, unlike native synaptotagmin-1, the chimera was able to function robustly in the presence of strontium–a metal not present in cells. We exploited this ability to show that a key function of synaptotagmin-1 is to penetrate cell membranes. This work sheds light on fundamental mechanisms of neurotransmitter release. PMID:26311762

  4. Pre-Synaptic Inhibition of Afferent Feedback in the Macaque Spinal Cord Does Not Modulate with Cycles of Peripheral Oscillations Around 10 Hz

    PubMed Central

    Galán, Ferran; Baker, Stuart N.

    2015-01-01

    Spinal interneurons are partially phase-locked to physiological tremor around 10 Hz. The phase of spinal interneuron activity is approximately opposite to descending drive to motoneurons, leading to partial phase cancellation and tremor reduction. Pre-synaptic inhibition of afferent feedback modulates during voluntary movements, but it is not known whether it tracks more rapid fluctuations in motor output such as during tremor. In this study, dorsal root potentials (DRPs) were recorded from the C8 and T1 roots in two macaque monkeys following intra-spinal micro-stimulation (random inter-stimulus interval 1.5–2.5 s, 30–100 μA), whilst the animals performed an index finger flexion task which elicited peripheral oscillations around 10 Hz. Forty one responses were identified with latency < 5 ms; these were narrow (mean width 0.59 ms), and likely resulted from antidromic activation of afferents following stimulation near terminals. Significant modulation during task performance occurred in 16/41 responses, reflecting terminal excitability changes generated by pre-synaptic inhibition (Wall's excitability test). Stimuli falling during large-amplitude 8–12 Hz oscillations in finger acceleration were extracted, and sub-averages of DRPs constructed for stimuli delivered at different oscillation phases. Although some apparent phase-dependent modulation was seen, this was not above the level expected by chance. We conclude that, although terminal excitability reflecting pre-synaptic inhibition of afferents modulates over the timescale of a voluntary movement, it does not follow more rapid changes in motor output. This suggests that pre-synaptic inhibition is not part of the spinal systems for tremor reduction described previously, and that it plays a role in overall—but not moment-by-moment—regulation of feedback gain. PMID:26635536

  5. pH modulation of glial glutamate transporters regulates synaptic transmission in the nucleus of the solitary tract

    PubMed Central

    McCrimmon, Donald R.; Martina, Marco

    2013-01-01

    The nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) is the major site for termination of visceral sensory afferents contributing to homeostatic regulation of, for example, arterial pressure, gastric motility, and breathing. Whereas much is known about how different neuronal populations influence these functions, information about the role of glia remains scant. In this article, we propose that glia may contribute to NTS functions by modulating excitatory neurotransmission. We found that acidification (pH 7.0) depolarizes NTS glia by inhibiting K+-selective membrane currents. NTS glia also showed functional expression of voltage-sensitive glutamate transporters, suggesting that extracellular acidification regulates synaptic transmission by compromising glial glutamate uptake. To test this hypothesis, we evoked glutamatergic slow excitatory potentials (SEPs) in NTS neurons with repetitive stimulation (20 pulses at 10 Hz) of the solitary tract. This SEP depends on accumulation of glutamate following repetitive stimulation, since it was potentiated by blocking glutamate uptake with dl-threo-β-benzyloxyaspartic acid (TBOA) or a glia-specific glutamate transport blocker, dihydrokainate (DHK). Importantly, extracellular acidification (pH 7.0) also potentiated the SEP. This effect appeared to be mediated through a depolarization-induced inhibition of glial transporter activity, because it was occluded by TBOA and DHK. In agreement, pH 7.0 did not directly alter d-aspartate-induced responses in NTS glia or properties of presynaptic glutamate release. Thus acidification-dependent regulation of glial function affects synaptic transmission within the NTS. These results suggest that glia play a modulatory role in the NTS by integrating local tissue signals (such as pH) with synaptic inputs from peripheral afferents. PMID:23615553

  6. pH modulation of glial glutamate transporters regulates synaptic transmission in the nucleus of the solitary tract.

    PubMed

    Huda, Rafiq; McCrimmon, Donald R; Martina, Marco

    2013-07-01

    The nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) is the major site for termination of visceral sensory afferents contributing to homeostatic regulation of, for example, arterial pressure, gastric motility, and breathing. Whereas much is known about how different neuronal populations influence these functions, information about the role of glia remains scant. In this article, we propose that glia may contribute to NTS functions by modulating excitatory neurotransmission. We found that acidification (pH 7.0) depolarizes NTS glia by inhibiting K(+)-selective membrane currents. NTS glia also showed functional expression of voltage-sensitive glutamate transporters, suggesting that extracellular acidification regulates synaptic transmission by compromising glial glutamate uptake. To test this hypothesis, we evoked glutamatergic slow excitatory potentials (SEPs) in NTS neurons with repetitive stimulation (20 pulses at 10 Hz) of the solitary tract. This SEP depends on accumulation of glutamate following repetitive stimulation, since it was potentiated by blocking glutamate uptake with dl-threo-β-benzyloxyaspartic acid (TBOA) or a glia-specific glutamate transport blocker, dihydrokainate (DHK). Importantly, extracellular acidification (pH 7.0) also potentiated the SEP. This effect appeared to be mediated through a depolarization-induced inhibition of glial transporter activity, because it was occluded by TBOA and DHK. In agreement, pH 7.0 did not directly alter d-aspartate-induced responses in NTS glia or properties of presynaptic glutamate release. Thus acidification-dependent regulation of glial function affects synaptic transmission within the NTS. These results suggest that glia play a modulatory role in the NTS by integrating local tissue signals (such as pH) with synaptic inputs from peripheral afferents. PMID:23615553

  7. Strong synaptic transmission impact by copy number variations in schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Glessner, Joseph T.; Reilly, Muredach P.; Kim, Cecilia E.; Takahashi, Nagahide; Albano, Anthony; Bradfield, Jonathan P.; Zhang, Haitao; Sleiman, Patrick M. A.; Flory, James H.; Imielinski, Marcin; Frackelton, Edward C.; Chiavacci, Rosetta; Thomas, Kelly A.; Garris, Maria; Otieno, Frederick G.; Davidson, Michael; Weiser, Mark; Reichenberg, Abraham; Davis, Kenneth L.; Friedman, Joseph I.; Cappola, Thomas P.; Margulies, Kenneth B.; Rader, Daniel J.; Grant, Struan F. A.; Buxbaum, Joseph D.; Gur, Raquel E.; Hakonarson, Hakon

    2010-01-01

    Schizophrenia is a psychiatric disorder with onset in late adolescence and unclear etiology characterized by both positive and negative symptoms, as well as cognitive deficits. To identify copy number variations (CNVs) that increase the risk of schizophrenia, we performed a whole-genome CNV analysis on a cohort of 977 schizophrenia cases and 2,000 healthy adults of European ancestry who were genotyped with 1.7 million probes. Positive findings were evaluated in an independent cohort of 758 schizophrenia cases and 1,485 controls. The Gene Ontology synaptic transmission family of genes was notably enriched for CNVs in the cases (P = 1.5 × 10?7). Among these, CACNA1B and DOC2A, both calcium-signaling genes responsible for neuronal excitation, were deleted in 16 cases and duplicated in 10 cases, respectively. In addition, RET and RIT2, both ras-related genes important for neural crest development, were significantly affected by CNVs. RET deletion was exclusive to seven cases, and RIT2 deletions were overrepresented common variant CNVs in the schizophrenia cases. Our results suggest that novel variations involving the processes of synaptic transmission contribute to the genetic susceptibility of schizophrenia. PMID:20489179

  8. Optogenetic inhibition of cortical afferents in the nucleus accumbens simultaneously prevents cue-induced transient synaptic potentiation and cocaine-seeking behavior.

    PubMed

    Stefanik, Michael T; Kupchik, Yonatan M; Kalivas, Peter W

    2016-04-01

    Animal models of relapse reveal that the motivation to seek drug is regulated by enduring morphological and physiological changes in the nucleus accumbens, as well as transient synaptic potentiation in the accumbens core (NAcore) that parallels drug-seeking behavior. The current study sought to examine the link between the behavioral and synaptic consequences of cue-induced cocaine seeking by optically silencing glutamatergic afferents to the NAcore from the prelimbic cortex (PL). Adeno-associated virus coding for the inhibitory opsin archaerhodopsin was microinjected into PL, and optical fibers were targeted to NAcore. Animals were trained to self-administer cocaine followed by extinction training, and then underwent cue-induced reinstatement in the presence or absence of 15 min of optically induced inhibition of PL fibers in NAcore. Inhibiting the PL-to-NAcore projection blocked reinstated behavior and was paralleled by decreased dendritic spine head diameter and AMPA/NMDA ratio relative to sham-laser control rats. Interestingly, while spine density was elevated after extinction training, no further effects were observed by cued reinstatement or optical inhibition. These findings validate the critical role for PL afferents to the NAcore in simultaneously regulating both reinstated behavior and the associated transient synaptic potentiation. PMID:25663648

  9. Dopaminergic modulation of synaptic transmission in cortex and striatum

    PubMed Central

    Tritsch, Nicolas X.; Sabatini, Bernardo L.

    2015-01-01

    Among the many neuromodulators used by the mammalian brain to regulate circuit function and plasticity, dopamine (DA) stands out as one of the most behaviorally powerful. For example, release of DA within nucleus accumbens signals reward and rapidly modifies brain function to drive repetition of motor action in search of further reward. The control that DA exerts over behavior is also clear in humans, as mimicry of dopaminergic reward signals underlies addiction to drugs of abuse, whereas death of midbrain dopaminergic neurons causes Parkinson’s disease (PD). In addition, perturbations of DA are implicated in the pathogenesis, or exploited in the treatment of many neuropsychiatric diseases including schizophrenia, obsessive compulsive disorder, and Tourette’s syndrome. Although the precise mechanisms employed by DA to exert its control over behavior are not fully understood, DA is known to regulate many electrical and biochemical aspects of neuronal function including excitability, synaptic transmission, integration and plasticity, protein trafficking and gene transcription. In this review, we discuss the actions of DA on ionic and synaptic signaling in neurons of the prefrontal cortex and striatum, brain areas in which dopaminergic dysfunction is thought to be central to the above-mentioned diseases. We focus on actions of DA on the pre- and postsynaptic terminals and restrict our discussion to studies in which the site of action or the molecular target of DA is clearly identified. PMID:23040805

  10. Statistical analysis of synaptic transmission: model discrimination and confidence limits.

    PubMed Central

    Stricker, C; Redman, S; Daley, D

    1994-01-01

    Procedures for discriminating between competing statistical models of synaptic transmission, and for providing confidence limits on the parameters of these models, have been developed. These procedures were tested against simulated data and were used to analyze the fluctuations in synaptic currents evoked in hippocampal neurones. All models were fitted to data using the Expectation-Maximization algorithm and a maximum likelihood criterion. Competing models were evaluated using the log-likelihood ratio (Wilks statistic). When the competing models were not nested, Monte Carlo sampling of the model used as the null hypothesis (H0) provided density functions against which H0 and the alternate model (H1) were tested. The statistic for the log-likelihood ratio was determined from the fit of H0 and H1 to these probability densities. This statistic was used to determine the significance level at which H0 could be rejected for the original data. When the competing models were nested, log-likelihood ratios and the chi 2 statistic were used to determine the confidence level for rejection. Once the model that provided the best statistical fit to the data was identified, many estimates for the model parameters were calculated by resampling the original data. Bootstrap techniques were then used to obtain the confidence limits of these parameters. PMID:7948672

  11. Depression of spinal monosynaptic transmission by diethyl ether: quantal analysis of unitary synaptic potentials.

    PubMed

    Zorychta, E; Capek, R

    1978-12-01

    The site at which diethyl ether impairs transmission in the spinal monosynaptic pathway was studied by intracellular recording from lumbosacral motoneurons. The drug was administered by inhalation to spinal cats, in concentrations which produce surgical anesthesia. Ether had no significant effect on resting potential or input resistance of the cell membrane. It decreased the electrical excitability in some but not all motoneurons. This action may contribute to the depressant effects of ether. Monosynaptic excitatory postsynaptic potentials evoked by impulses in a single Ia afferent fiber (unitary EPSPs) of the triceps surae nerve were recorded from homonymous motoneurons. They were measured and their amplitude distribution was analyzed by a computer-aided procedure. The mean amplitude of the unitary EPSPs was 0.15 to 0.31 mV, and the mean number of transmitter quanta released by each impulse ranged from 1.5 to 4.1 before drug administration. Both values were decreased during inhalation of ether but recovered toward normal after the drug was discontinued. The mean amplitude of the EPSPs produced by one transmitter quantum was 0.08 to 0.15 mV and was not depressed during ether administration. It is concluded that either in anesthetic concentrations depresses synaptic potentials presynaptically by decreasing the amount of excitatory transmitter released, while leaving the chemosensitivity of the postsynaptic membrane unchanged. PMID:215743

  12. Bidirectional dopaminergic modulation of excitatory synaptic transmission in orexin neurons.

    PubMed

    Alberto, Christian O; Trask, Robert B; Quinlan, Michelle E; Hirasawa, Michiru

    2006-09-27

    Orexin neurons in the lateral hypothalamus (LH)/perifornical area (PFA) are known to promote food intake as well as provide excitatory influence on the dopaminergic reward pathway. Dopamine (DA), in turn, inhibits the reward pathway and food intake through its action in the LH/PFA. However, the cellular mechanism by which DA modulates orexin neurons remains largely unknown. Therefore, we examined the effect of DA on the excitatory neurotransmission to orexin neurons. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were performed using acute rat hypothalamic slices, and orexin neurons were identified by their electrophysiological and immunohistochemical characteristics. Pharmacologically isolated action potential-independent miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs) were monitored. Bath application of DA induced a bidirectional effect on the excitatory synaptic transmission dose dependently. A low dose of DA (1 microM) increased mEPSC frequency, which was blocked by the D1-like receptor antagonist SCH 23390, and mimicked by the D1-like receptor agonist SKF 81297. In contrast, higher doses of DA (10-100 microM) decreased mEPSC frequency, which could be blocked with the D2-like receptor antagonist, sulpiride. Quinpirole, the D2-like receptor agonist, also reduced mEPSC frequency. None of these compounds affected the mEPSCs amplitude, suggesting the locus of action was presynaptic. Furthermore, DA (1 microM) induced an increase in the action potential firing, whereas DA (100 microM) hyperpolarized and ceased the firing of orexin neurons, indicating the effect of DA on excitatory synaptic transmission may influence the activity of the postsynaptic cell. In conclusion, our results suggest that D1- and D2-like receptors have opposing effects on the excitatory presynaptic terminals impinging onto orexin neurons. PMID:17005867

  13. Ketamine-mediated afferent-specific presynaptic transmission blocks in low-threshold and sex-specific subpopulation of myelinated Ah-type baroreceptor neurons of rats

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Di; Yin, Lei; Fan, Yao; Wang, Ye; Chen, Wei-Ran; Chen, Pei; Liu, Yang; Lu, Xiao-Long; Sun, Hong-Li; Shou, Weinian; Qiao, Guo-Fen; Li, Bai-Yan

    2015-01-01

    Background Ketamine enhances autonomic activity, and unmyelinated C-type baroreceptor afferents are more susceptible to be blocked by ketamine than myelinated A-types. However, the presynaptic transmission block in low-threshold and sex-specific myelinated Ah-type baroreceptor neurons (BRNs) is not elucidated. Methods Action potentials (APs) and excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs) were investigated in BRNs/barosensitive neurons identified by conduction velocity (CV), capsaicin-conjugated with Iberiotoxin-sensitivity and fluorescent dye using intact nodose slice and brainstem slice in adult female rats. The expression of mRNA and targeted protein for NMDAR1 was also evaluated. Results Ketamine time-dependently blocked afferent CV in Ah-types in nodose slice with significant changes in AP discharge. The concentration-dependent inhibition of ketamine on AP discharge profiles were also assessed and observed using isolated Ah-type BRNs with dramatic reduction in neuroexcitability. In brainstem slice, the 2nd-order capsaicin-resistant EPSCs were identified and ∼50% of them were blocked by ketamine concentration-dependently with IC50 estimated at 84.4 μM compared with the rest (708.2 μM). Interestingly, the peak, decay time constant, and area under curve of EPSCs were significantly enhanced by 100 nM iberiotoxin in ketamine-more sensitive myelinated NTS neurons (most likely Ah-types), rather than ketamine-less sensitive ones (A-types). Conclusions These data have demonstrated, for the first time, that low-threshold and sex-specific myelinated Ah-type BRNs in nodose and Ah-type barosensitive neurons in NTS are more susceptible to ketamine and may play crucial roles in not only mean blood pressure regulation but also buffering dynamic changes in pressure, as well as the ketamine-mediated cardiovascular dysfunction through sexual-dimorphic baroreflex afferent pathway. PMID:26675761

  14. Leptin potentiates GABAergic synaptic transmission in the developing rodent hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Guimond, Damien; Diabira, Diabe; Porcher, Christophe; Bader, Francesca; Ferrand, Nadine; Zhu, Mingyan; Appleyard, Suzanne M; Wayman, Gary A; Gaiarsa, Jean-Luc

    2014-01-01

    It is becoming increasingly clear that leptin is not only a hormone regulating energy homeostasis but also a neurotrophic factor impacting a number of brain regions, including the hippocampus. Although leptin promotes the development of GABAergic transmission in the hypothalamus, little is known about its action on the GABAergic system in the hippocampus. Here we show that leptin modulates GABAergic transmission onto developing CA3 pyramidal cells of newborn rats. Specifically, leptin induces a long-lasting potentiation (LLP-GABAA) of miniature GABAA receptor-mediated postsynaptic current (GABAA-PSC) frequency. Leptin also increases the amplitude of evoked GABAA-PSCs in a subset of neurons along with a decrease in the coefficient of variation and no change in the paired-pulse ratio, pointing to an increased recruitment of functional synapses. Adding pharmacological blockers to the recording pipette showed that the leptin-induced LLP-GABAA requires postsynaptic calcium released from internal stores, as well as postsynaptic MAPK/ERK kinases 1 and/or 2 (MEK1/2), phosphoinositide 3 kinase (PI3K) and calcium-calmodulin kinase kinase (CaMKK). Finally, study of CA3 pyramidal cells in leptin-deficient ob/ob mice revealed a reduction in the basal frequency of miniature GABAA-PSCs compared to wild type littermates. In addition, presynaptic GAD65 immunostaining was reduced in the CA3 stratum pyramidale of mutant animals, both results converging to suggest a decreased number of functional GABAergic synapses in ob/ob mice. Overall, these results show that leptin potentiates and promotes the development of GABAergic synaptic transmission in the developing hippocampus likely via an increase in the number of functional synapses, and provide insights into the intracellular pathways mediating this effect. This study further extends the scope of leptin's neurotrophic action to a key regulator of hippocampal development and function, namely GABAergic transmission. PMID:25177272

  15. Leptin potentiates GABAergic synaptic transmission in the developing rodent hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    Guimond, Damien; Diabira, Diabe; Porcher, Christophe; Bader, Francesca; Ferrand, Nadine; Zhu, Mingyan; Appleyard, Suzanne M.; Wayman, Gary A.; Gaiarsa, Jean-Luc

    2014-01-01

    It is becoming increasingly clear that leptin is not only a hormone regulating energy homeostasis but also a neurotrophic factor impacting a number of brain regions, including the hippocampus. Although leptin promotes the development of GABAergic transmission in the hypothalamus, little is known about its action on the GABAergic system in the hippocampus. Here we show that leptin modulates GABAergic transmission onto developing CA3 pyramidal cells of newborn rats. Specifically, leptin induces a long-lasting potentiation (LLP-GABAA) of miniature GABAA receptor-mediated postsynaptic current (GABAA-PSC) frequency. Leptin also increases the amplitude of evoked GABAA-PSCs in a subset of neurons along with a decrease in the coefficient of variation and no change in the paired-pulse ratio, pointing to an increased recruitment of functional synapses. Adding pharmacological blockers to the recording pipette showed that the leptin-induced LLP-GABAA requires postsynaptic calcium released from internal stores, as well as postsynaptic MAPK/ERK kinases 1 and/or 2 (MEK1/2), phosphoinositide 3 kinase (PI3K) and calcium-calmodulin kinase kinase (CaMKK). Finally, study of CA3 pyramidal cells in leptin-deficient ob/ob mice revealed a reduction in the basal frequency of miniature GABAA-PSCs compared to wild type littermates. In addition, presynaptic GAD65 immunostaining was reduced in the CA3 stratum pyramidale of mutant animals, both results converging to suggest a decreased number of functional GABAergic synapses in ob/ob mice. Overall, these results show that leptin potentiates and promotes the development of GABAergic synaptic transmission in the developing hippocampus likely via an increase in the number of functional synapses, and provide insights into the intracellular pathways mediating this effect. This study further extends the scope of leptin's neurotrophic action to a key regulator of hippocampal development and function, namely GABAergic transmission. PMID:25177272

  16. The unsilent majority–TRPV1 drives “spontaneous” transmission of unmyelinated primary afferents within cardiorespiratory NTS

    PubMed Central

    Hofmann, Mackenzie E.; Fawley, Jessica A.

    2012-01-01

    Cranial primary afferent sensory neurons figure importantly in homeostatic control of visceral organ systems. Of the two broad classes of visceral afferents, the role of unmyelinated or C-type class remains poorly understood. This review contrasts key aspects of peripheral discharge properties of C-fiber afferents and their glutamate transmission mechanisms within the solitary tract nucleus (NTS). During normal prevailing conditions, most information arrives at the NTS through myelinated A-type nerves. However, most of visceral afferent axons (75–90%) in NTS are unmyelinated, C-type axons. Centrally, C-type solitary tract (ST) afferent terminals have presynaptic transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) receptors. Capsaicin activation of TRPV1 blocks phasic or synchronous release of glutamate but facilitates release of glutamate from a separate pool of vesicles. This TRPV1-operated pool of vesicles is active at normal temperatures and is responsible for actively driving a 10-fold higher release of glutamate at TRPV1 compared with TRPV1− terminals even in the absence of afferent action potentials. This novel TRPV1 mechanism is responsible for an additional asynchronous release of glutamate that is not present in myelinated terminals. The NTS is rich with presynaptic G protein-coupled receptors, and the implications of TRPV1-operated glutamate offer unique targets for signaling in C-type sensory afferent terminals from neuropeptides, inflammatory mediators, lipid metabolites, cytokines, and cannabinoids. From a homeostatic view, this combination could have broad implications for integration in chronic pathological disturbances in which the numeric dominance of C-type endings and TRPV1 would broadly disturb multisystem control mechanisms. PMID:23076872

  17. Interactions of Human Autoantibodies with Hippocampal GABAergic Synaptic Transmission – Analyzing Antibody-Induced Effects ex vivo

    PubMed Central

    Haselmann, Holger; Röpke, Luise; Werner, Christian; Kunze, Albrecht; Geis, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Autoantibodies (aAB) to the presynaptic located enzyme glutamate decarboxylase 65 (GAD65) are a characteristic attribute for a variety of autoimmune diseases of the central nervous system including subtypes of limbic encephalitis, stiff person-syndrome, cerebellar ataxia, and Batten’s disease. Clinical signs of hyperexcitability and improvement of disease symptoms upon immunotherapy in some of these disorders suggest a possible pathogenic role of associated aAB. Recent experimental studies report inconsistent results regarding a direct pathogenic influence of anti-GAD65 aAB affecting inhibitory synaptic transmission in central GABAergic pathways. We here provide a method for direct evaluation of aAB-induced pathomechanisms in the intact hippocampal network. Purified patient IgG fractions containing aAB to GAD65 together with fixable lipophilic styryl dyes (FMdyes) are stereotactically injected into the hilus and the dentate gyrus in anesthetized mice. Twenty-four hours after intrahippocampal injection, acute hippocampal slices are prepared and transferred to a patch-clamp recording setup equipped with a fluorescence light source. Intraneural incorporated FMdyes show correct injection site for patch-clamp recording. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings are performed from granule cells in the dentate gyrus and extracellular stimulation is applied in the border area of the dentate gyrus-hilus region to stimulate GABAergic afferents arising from parvalbumin positive basket cells. GABA-A receptor mediated inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSC) and miniature IPSC are recorded after blocking glutamatergic transmission. This approach allows investigation of potential aAB-induced effects on GABA-A receptor signaling ex vivo in an intact neuronal network. This offers several advantages compared to experimental procedures used in previous studies by in?vitro AB preincubation of primary neurons or slice preparations. Furthermore, this method requires only small amounts of patient material that are often limited in rare diseases. PMID:26124746

  18. Electric fields due to synaptic currents sharpen excitatory transmission.

    PubMed

    Sylantyev, Sergiy; Savtchenko, Leonid P; Niu, Yin-Ping; Ivanov, Anton I; Jensen, Thomas P; Kullmann, Dimitri M; Xiao, Min-Yi; Rusakov, Dmitri A

    2008-03-28

    The synaptic response waveform, which determines signal integration properties in the brain, depends on the spatiotemporal profile of neurotransmitter in the synaptic cleft. Here, we show that electrophoretic interactions between AMPA receptor-mediated excitatory currents and negatively charged glutamate molecules accelerate the clearance of glutamate from the synaptic cleft, speeding up synaptic responses. This phenomenon is reversed upon depolarization and diminished when intracleft electric fields are weakened through a decrease in the AMPA receptor density. In contrast, the kinetics of receptor-mediated currents evoked by direct application of glutamate are voltage-independent, as are synaptic currents mediated by the electrically neutral neurotransmitter GABA. Voltage-dependent temporal tuning of excitatory synaptic responses may thus contribute to signal integration in neural circuits. PMID:18369150

  19. Afferent-specific AMPA receptor subunit composition and regulation of synaptic plasticity in midbrain dopamine neurons by abused drugs.

    PubMed

    Good, Cameron H; Lupica, Carl R

    2010-06-01

    Ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons play a pivotal role in processing reward-related information and are involved in drug addiction and mental illness in humans. Information is conveyed to the VTA in large part by glutamatergic afferents that arise in various brain nuclei, including the pedunculopontine nucleus (PPN). Using a unique rat brain slice preparation, we found that PPN stimulation activates afferents targeting GluR2-containing AMPA receptors (AMPAR) on VTA DA neurons, and these afferents did not exhibit long-term depression (LTD). In contrast, activation of glutamate afferents onto the same DA neurons via stimulation within the VTA evoked EPSCs mediated by GluR2-lacking AMPARs that demonstrated LTD or EPSCs mediated by GluR2-containing AMPA receptors that did not express LTD. Twenty-four hours after single cocaine injections to rats, GluR2-lacking AMPARs were increased at both PPN and local VTA projections, and this permitted LTD expression in both pathways. Single injections with the main psychoactive ingredient of marijuana, Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (Delta(9)-THC), increased GluR2-lacking AMPA receptors and permitted LTD in only the PPN pathway, and these effects were prevented by in vivo pretreatment with the cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonist AM251. These results demonstrate that cocaine more globally increases GluR2-lacking AMPA receptors at all glutamate synapses on VTA dopamine neurons, whereas Delta(9)-THC selectively increased GluR2-lacking AMPA receptors at subcortical PPN synapses. This suggests that different abused drugs may exert influence over distinct sets of glutamatergic afferents to VTA DA neurons which may be associated with different reinforcing or addictive properties of these drugs. PMID:20534838

  20. Extracellular ATP Hydrolysis Inhibits Synaptic Transmission by Increasing pH Buffering in the Synaptic Cleft

    PubMed Central

    Vroman, Rozan; Klaassen, Lauw J.; Howlett, Marcus H.C.; Cenedese, Valentina; Klooster, Jan; Sjoerdsma, Trijntje; Kamermans, Maarten

    2014-01-01

    Neuronal computations strongly depend on inhibitory interactions. One such example occurs at the first retinal synapse, where horizontal cells inhibit photoreceptors. This interaction generates the center/surround organization of bipolar cell receptive fields and is crucial for contrast enhancement. Despite its essential role in vision, the underlying synaptic mechanism has puzzled the neuroscience community for decades. Two competing hypotheses are currently considered: an ephaptic and a proton-mediated mechanism. Here we show that horizontal cells feed back to photoreceptors via an unexpected synthesis of the two. The first one is a very fast ephaptic mechanism that has no synaptic delay, making it one of the fastest inhibitory synapses known. The second one is a relatively slow (??200 ms), highly intriguing mechanism. It depends on ATP release via Pannexin 1 channels located on horizontal cell dendrites invaginating the cone synaptic terminal. The ecto-ATPase NTPDase1 hydrolyses extracellular ATP to AMP, phosphate groups, and protons. The phosphate groups and protons form a pH buffer with a pKa of 7.2, which keeps the pH in the synaptic cleft relatively acidic. This inhibits the cone Ca2+ channels and consequently reduces the glutamate release by the cones. When horizontal cells hyperpolarize, the pannexin 1 channels decrease their conductance, the ATP release decreases, and the formation of the pH buffer reduces. The resulting alkalization in the synaptic cleft consequently increases cone glutamate release. Surprisingly, the hydrolysis of ATP instead of ATP itself mediates the synaptic modulation. Our results not only solve longstanding issues regarding horizontal cell to photoreceptor feedback, they also demonstrate a new form of synaptic modulation. Because pannexin 1 channels and ecto-ATPases are strongly expressed in the nervous system and pannexin 1 function is implicated in synaptic plasticity, we anticipate that this novel form of synaptic modulation may be a widespread phenomenon. PMID:24844296

  1. Endocannabinoids blunt the augmentation of synaptic transmission by serotonin 2A receptors in the nucleus tractus solitarii (nTS)

    PubMed Central

    Austgen, James R.; Kline, David D.

    2013-01-01

    Serotonin (5-Hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) and the 5-HT2 receptor modulate cardiovascular and autonomic function in part through actions in the nTS, the primary termination and integration point for cardiorespiratory afferents in the brainstem. In other brain regions, 5-HT2 receptors (5-HT2R) modify synaptic transmission directly, as well as through 5-HT2AR-induced endocannabinoid release. This study examined the role of 5-HT2AR as well as their interaction with endocannabinoids on neurotransmission in the nucleus tractus solitarii (nTS). Excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) in monosynaptic nTS neurons were recorded in the horizontal brainstem slice during activation and blockade of 5-HT2ARs. 5-HT2AR activation augmented solitary tract (TS) evoked EPSC amplitude whereas 5-HT2AR blockade depressed TS-EPSC amplitude at low and high TS stimulation rates. The 5-HT2AR-induced increase in neurotransmission was reduced by endocannabinoid receptor block and increased endogenous endocannabinoids in the synaptic cleft during high frequency, but not low, TS stimulation. Endocannabinoids did not tonically modify EPSCs. These data suggest 5-HT acting through the 5-HT2AR is an excitatory neuromodulator in the nTS and its effects are modulated by the endocannabinoid system. PMID:24041777

  2. Synapsin-dependent reserve pool of synaptic vesicles supports replenishment of the readily releasable pool under intense synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Vasileva, Mariya; Horstmann, Heinz; Geumann, Constanze; Gitler, Daniel; Kuner, Thomas

    2012-10-01

    Synapsins are abundant synaptic vesicle (SV)-associated proteins thought to mediate synaptic vesicle mobility and clustering at most synapses. We used synapsin triple knock-out (TKO) mice to examine the morphological and functional consequences of deleting all synapsin isoforms at the calyx of Held, a giant glutamatergic synapse located in the auditory brain stem. Quantitative three-dimensional (3D) immunohistochemistry of entire calyces showed lower amounts of the synaptic vesicle protein vGluT1 while the level of the active zone marker bassoon was unchanged in TKO terminals. Examination of brain lysates by ELISA revealed a strong reduction in abundance of several synaptic vesicle proteins, while proteins of the active zone cytomatrix or postsynaptic density were unaffected. Serial section scanning electron microscopy of large 3D-reconstructed segments confirmed a decrease in the number of SVs to approximately 50% in TKO calyces. Short-term depression tested at stimulus frequencies ranging from 10 to 300 Hz was accelerated only at frequencies above 100 Hz and the time course of recovery from depression was slowed in calyces lacking synapsins. These results reveal that in wild-type synapses, the synapsin-dependent reserve pool contributes to the replenishment of the readily releasable pool (RRP), although accounting only for a small fraction of the SVs that enter the RRP. In conclusion, our results suggest that synapsins may be required for normal synaptic vesicle biogenesis, trafficking and immobilization of synaptic vesicles, yet they are not essential for sustained high-frequency synaptic transmission at the calyx terminal. PMID:22805168

  3. Spinal use-dependent plasticity of synaptic transmission in humans after a single cycling session

    PubMed Central

    Meunier, Sabine; Kwon, Jeongyi; Russmann, Heike; Ravindran, Shashi; Mazzocchio, Riccardo; Cohen, Leonardo

    2007-01-01

    The spinal cord is able to express use-dependent plasticity, as demonstrated in spinalized cats following treadmill training. In humans, spinal use-dependent plasticity is inferred from modifications in the size of H reflex, which are often more prominent after skilled motor training. Plasticity can develop at synaptic connections between afferent fibres and/or descending tracts and motoneurones or interneurones interposed in the spinal pathways. Here we explore whether skilled training induces a change in synaptic efficacy at the synapse between Ia afferents and soleus (Sol) motoneurones. Synaptic efficacy can be modulated presynaptically through changes of the probability of transmitter release (homosynaptic depression, HD). The frequency-related depression of the Sol H reflex, thought to reflect HD, was tested at rest, before and after one single skilled (14 subjects) or non-skilled (9 subjects) cycling training session. Performance improved in both groups but to a larger extent with skilled training, while HD increased immediately after and the day following skilled training in the absence of changes with non-skilled training. These results support the view that spinal cord function is able to encode a local motor memory. PMID:17170047

  4. Prion protein as a mediator of synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Steinert, Joern R

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative disorders are characterized by synaptic and neuronal dysfunction which precedes general neuronal loss and subsequent cognitive or behavioral anomalies. Although the exact early cellular signaling mechanisms involved in neurodegenerative diseases are largely unknown, a view is emerging that compromised synaptic function may underlie the initial steps in disease progression. Much recent research has been aimed at understanding these early underlying processes leading to dysfunctional synaptic signaling, as this knowledge could identify putative sites of interventions, which could potentially slow progression and delay onset of disease. We have recently reported that synaptic function in a Drosophila melanogaster model can be modulated by the presence of native mouse prion protein and this modulation is negatively affected by a mutation within the protein which is associated with the Gerstmann-Sträussler-Scheinker syndrome, a human form of prion disease. Indeed, wild-type prion protein facilitates synaptic release, whereas the mutated form induced diminished phenotypes. It is believed that together with the gain-of-function of neurotoxic misfolded prion signaling, the lack of prion protein contributes to the pathology in prion diseases. Therefore, our study investigated a potential endogenous role of prion protein in synaptic signaling, the lack of which could resemble a lack-of-function phenotype in prion disease. PMID:26478992

  5. Synaptic Mitochondria in Synaptic Transmission and Organization of Vesicle Pools in Health and Disease

    PubMed Central

    Vos, Melissa; Lauwers, Elsa; Verstreken, Patrik

    2010-01-01

    Cell types rich in mitochondria, including neurons, display a high energy demand and a need for calcium buffering. The importance of mitochondria for proper neuronal function is stressed by the occurrence of neurological defects in patients suffering from a great variety of diseases caused by mutations in mitochondrial genes. Genetic and pharmacological evidence also reveal a role of these organelles in various aspects of neuronal physiology and in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders. Yet the mechanisms by which mitochondria can affect neurotransmission largely remain to be elucidated. In this review we focus on experimental data that suggest a critical function of synaptic mitochondria in the function and organization of synaptic vesicle pools, and in neurotransmitter release during intense neuronal activity. We discuss how calcium handling, ATP production and other mitochondrial mechanisms may influence synaptic vesicle pool organization and synaptic function. Given the link between synaptic mitochondrial function and neuronal communication, efforts toward better understanding mitochondrial biology may lead to novel therapeutic approaches of neurological disorders including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and psychiatric disorders that are at least in part caused by mitochondrial deficits. PMID:21423525

  6. Mechanisms underlying rule learning-induced enhancement of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Saar, Drorit; Reuveni, Iris; Barkai, Edi

    2012-02-01

    Training rats to perform rapidly and efficiently in an olfactory discrimination task results in robust enhancement of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic connectivity in the rat piriform cortex, which is maintained for days after training. To explore the mechanisms by which such synaptic enhancement occurs, we recorded spontaneous miniature excitatory and inhibitory synaptic events in identified piriform cortex neurons from odor-trained, pseudo-trained, and naive rats. We show that olfactory discrimination learning induces profound enhancement in the averaged amplitude of AMPA receptor-mediated miniature synaptic events in piriform cortex pyramidal neurons. Such physiological modifications are apparent at least 4 days after learning completion and outlast learning-induced modifications in the number of spines on these neurons. Also, the averaged amplitude of GABA(A) receptor-mediated miniature inhibitory synaptic events was significantly enhanced following odor discrimination training. For both excitatory and inhibitory transmission, an increase in miniature postsynaptic current amplitude was evident in most of the recorded neurons; however, some neurons showed an exceptionally great increase in the amplitude of miniature events. For both excitatory and inhibitory transmission, the frequency of spontaneous synaptic events was not modified after learning. These results suggest that olfactory discrimination learning-induced enhancement of synaptic transmission in cortical neurons is mediated by postsynaptic modulation of AMPA receptor-dependent currents and balanced by long-lasting modulation of postsynaptic GABA(A) receptor-mediated currents. PMID:22131370

  7. Glutamate-AMPAR interaction in a model of synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Ventriglia, Francesco; Di Maio, Vito

    2013-11-01

    Over the last several years we have investigated the excitatory synaptic response by means of a mathematical model based on a detailed description of the synapse geometry, the Brownian motion of Glutamate molecules and their binding to postsynaptic receptors. Recently, the basic model has been modified for the numbers, the size and the 3D structure of receptors according to new data from the literature. Some results of simulations performed with the updated model are shown here. They were aimed to study the synaptic response in relation to the binding probability, to the probable height of the receptors in the synaptic cleft, and to the space-time distribution of Glutamate/Receptor collisions. A first series of simulations permitted to determine a possible range of values for the binding probability of Glutamate to receptors. Other simulations, investigating the changes induced on the synaptic response by the variations of the height of AMPA receptors in synaptic cleft, allowed to identify the height producing the higher amplitude peak of the mEPSCs. Finally, two new statistical descriptors for analyzing the synaptic response were presented. The first is based on the study of the space distribution of the number of Glutamate/Receptor collisions. Simulations investigating the effects of an increasing eccentricity of the releasing vesicle allowed assessing this method. The second one considers the inter-collision times between Glutamate molecules and binding sites. The results of some of the last simulations demonstrated its capacity to highlight the subtleties and the randomness underlying the activation of the receptors. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Neural Coding 2012. PMID:23648359

  8. High-Throughput All-Optical Analysis of Synaptic Transmission and Synaptic Vesicle Recycling in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Wabnig, Sebastian; Liewald, Jana Fiona; Yu, Szi-chieh; Gottschalk, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic vesicles (SVs) undergo a cycle of biogenesis and membrane fusion to release transmitter, followed by recycling. How exocytosis and endocytosis are coupled is intensively investigated. We describe an all-optical method for identification of neurotransmission genes that can directly distinguish SV recycling factors in C. elegans, by motoneuron photostimulation and muscular RCaMP Ca2+ imaging. We verified our approach on mutants affecting synaptic transmission. Mutation of genes affecting SV recycling (unc-26 synaptojanin, unc-41 stonin, unc-57 endophilin, itsn-1 intersectin, snt-1 synaptotagmin) showed a distinct ‘signature’ of muscle Ca2+ dynamics, induced by cholinergic motoneuron photostimulation, i.e. faster rise, and earlier decrease of the signal, reflecting increased synaptic fatigue during ongoing photostimulation. To facilitate high throughput, we measured (3–5 times) ~1000 nematodes for each gene. We explored if this method enables RNAi screening for SV recycling genes. Previous screens for synaptic function genes, based on behavioral or pharmacological assays, allowed no distinction of the stage of the SV cycle in which a protein might act. We generated a strain enabling RNAi specifically only in cholinergic neurons, thus resulting in healthier animals and avoiding lethal phenotypes resulting from knockdown elsewhere. RNAi of control genes resulted in Ca2+ measurements that were consistent with results obtained in the respective genomic mutants, albeit to a weaker extent in most cases, and could further be confirmed by opto-electrophysiological measurements for mutants of some of the genes, including synaptojanin. We screened 95 genes that were previously implicated in cholinergic transmission, and several controls. We identified genes that clustered together with known SV recycling genes, exhibiting a similar signature of their Ca2+ dynamics. Five of these genes (C27B7.7, erp-1, inx-8, inx-10, spp-10) were further assessed in respective genomic mutants; however, while all showed electrophysiological phenotypes indicative of reduced cholinergic transmission, no obvious SV recycling phenotypes could be uncovered for these genes. PMID:26312752

  9. Decreased pain threshold and enhanced synaptic transmission in the anterior cingulate cortex of experimental hypothyroidism mice

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Thyroid hormones are essential for the maturation and functions of the central nervous system. Pain sensitivity is related to the thyroid status. However, information on how thyroid hormones affect pain processing and synaptic transmission in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) is limited. Nociceptive threshold and synaptic transmission in the ACC were detected in the experimental hypothyroidism (HT) mice. Results HT was induced by methimazole and potassium perchlorate in distilled drinking water for 4 weeks. The threshold of pain perception to hot insults, but not mechanical ones, decreased in hypothyroid mice. After treatment with tri-iodothyronine (T3) or thyroxine (T4) for 2 weeks, thermal pain threshold recovered. Electrophysiological recordings revealed enhanced glutamatergic synaptic transmission and reduced GABAergic synaptic transmission in the ACC. Supplementation with T3 or T4 significantly rescued this synaptic transmission imbalance. In the same model, HT caused the up-regulation of the GluR1 subunit of the α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor and NR2B-containing N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors, but it down-regulated γ-aminobutyric acid A receptors in the ACC. Supplementation with T3 or T4 notably recovered the levels of above proteins. Conclusions These results suggest that HT promotes hypersensitivity to noxious thermal, and that supplementation with T3 or T4 rescues the imbalance between excitatory and inhibitory transmission in the ACC. PMID:24943008

  10. Neurogranin restores amyloid ?-mediated synaptic transmission and long-term potentiation deficits.

    PubMed

    Kaleka, Kanwardeep Singh; Gerges, Nashaat Z

    2016-03-01

    Amyloid ? (A?) is widely considered one of the early causes of cognitive deficits observed in Alzheimer's disease. Many of the deficits caused by A? are attributed to its disruption of synaptic function represented by its blockade of long-term potentiation (LTP) and its induction of synaptic depression. Identifying pathways that reverse these synaptic deficits may open the door to new therapeutic targets. In this study, we explored the possibility that Neurogranin (Ng)-a postsynaptic calmodulin (CaM) targeting protein that enhances synaptic function-may rescue A?-mediated deficits in synaptic function. Our results show that Ng is able to reverse synaptic depression and LTP deficits induced by A?. Furthermore, Ng's restoration of synaptic transmission is through the insertion of GluA1-containing ?-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid glutamate receptors (AMPARs). These restorative effects of Ng are dependent on the interaction of Ng and CaM and CaM-dependent activation of CaMKII. Overall, this study identifies a novel mechanism to rescue synaptic deficits induced by A? oligomers. It also suggests Ng and CaM signaling as potential therapeutic targets for Alzheimer's disease as well as important tools to further explore the pathophysiology underlying the disease. PMID:26721336

  11. Structural determinants underlying the high efficacy of synaptic transmission and plasticity at synaptic boutons in layer 4 of the adult rat 'barrel cortex'.

    PubMed

    Rollenhagen, Astrid; Klook, Kerstin; Sätzler, Kurt; Qi, Guanxiao; Anstötz, Max; Feldmeyer, Dirk; Lübke, Joachim H R

    2015-11-01

    Excitatory layer 4 (L4) neurons in the 'barrel field' of the rat somatosensory cortex represent an important component in thalamocortical information processing. However, no detailed information exists concerning the quantitative geometry of synaptic boutons terminating on these neurons. Thus, L4 synaptic boutons were investigated using serial ultrathin sections and subsequent quantitative 3D reconstructions. In particular, parameters representing structural correlates of synaptic transmission and plasticity such as the number, size and distribution of pre- and postsynaptic densities forming the active zone (AZ) and of the three functionally defined pools of synaptic vesicles were analyzed. L4 synaptic boutons varied substantially in shape and size; the majority had a single, but large AZ with opposing pre- and postsynaptic densities that matched perfectly in size and position. More than a third of the examined boutons showed perforations of the postsynaptic density. Synaptic boutons contained on average a total pool of 561 ± 108 vesicles, with ~5% constituting the putative readily releasable, ~23% the recycling, and the remainder the reserve pool. These pools are comparably larger than other characterized central synapses. Synaptic complexes were surrounded by a dense network of fine astrocytic processes that reached as far as the synaptic cleft, thus regulating the temporal and spatial glutamate concentration, and thereby shaping the unitary EPSP amplitude. In summary, the geometry and size of AZs, the comparably large readily releasable and recycling pools, together with the tight astrocytic ensheathment, may explain and contribute to the high release probability, efficacy and modulation of synaptic transmission at excitatory L4 synaptic boutons. Moreover, the structural variability as indicated by the geometry of L4 synaptic boutons, the presence of mitochondria and the size and shape of the AZs strongly suggest that synaptic reliability, strength and plasticity is governed and modulated individually at excitatory L4 synaptic boutons. PMID:25084745

  12. Long-term plasticity determines the postsynaptic response to correlated afferents with multivesicular short-term synaptic depression

    PubMed Central

    Bird, Alex D.; Richardson, Magnus J. E.

    2014-01-01

    Synchrony in a presynaptic population leads to correlations in vesicle occupancy at the active sites for neurotransmitter release. The number of independent release sites per presynaptic neuron, a synaptic parameter recently shown to be modified during long-term plasticity, will modulate these correlations and therefore have a significant effect on the firing rate of the postsynaptic neuron. To understand how correlations from synaptic dynamics and from presynaptic synchrony shape the postsynaptic response, we study a model of multiple release site short-term plasticity and derive exact results for the crosscorrelation function of vesicle occupancy and neurotransmitter release, as well as the postsynaptic voltage variance. Using approximate forms for the postsynaptic firing rate in the limits of low and high correlations, we demonstrate that short-term depression leads to a maximum response for an intermediate number of presynaptic release sites, and that this leads to a tuning-curve response peaked at an optimal presynaptic synchrony set by the number of neurotransmitter release sites per presynaptic neuron. These effects arise because, above a certain level of correlation, activity in the presynaptic population is overly strong resulting in wastage of the pool of releasable neurotransmitter. As the nervous system operates under constraints of efficient metabolism it is likely that this phenomenon provides an activity-dependent constraint on network architecture. PMID:24523691

  13. Maturation of synaptic transmission at end-bulb synapses of the cochlear nucleus.

    PubMed

    Brenowitz, S; Trussell, L O

    2001-12-01

    Neurons of the avian nucleus magnocellularis transmit phase-locked action potentials of the auditory nerve in a pathway that contributes to sound localization based on interaural timing differences. We studied developmental changes in synaptic transmission that enable the end-bulb synapse to function as a synaptic relay. In chick, although the auditory system begins to function early in embryonic development, maturation of audition around the time of hatching suggested that synaptic transmission in the cochlear nucleus of young chicks may undergo further developmental changes. Synaptic physiology was investigated via patch-clamp recordings from bushy cells in brainstem slices during stimulation of auditory nerve fibers at 35 degrees C. Compared with embryonic synapses (embryonic day 18), post-hatch chicks (post-hatch days 1-11) exhibited high probability of firing a well timed postsynaptic action potential during high-frequency stimulation of the auditory nerve. Improvements in reliability and timing of postsynaptic spikes were accompanied by a developmental increase in steady-state EPSCs during stimulus trains and a decline in the extent of synaptic depression. Synchrony of EPSCs during stimulus trains improved with age. An increased pool of synaptic vesicles, lower release probability, larger and faster transmitter quanta, and reduced AMPA receptor desensitization contributed to these changes. Together, these factors improve the ability of cochlear nucleus magnocellularis neurons to faithfully transmit timing information encoded by the auditory nerve. PMID:11717383

  14. KIF5B Motor Adaptor Syntabulin Maintains Synaptic Transmission in Sympathetic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Huan; Cai, Qian; Lu, Wenbo

    2009-01-01

    Newly synthesized synaptic proteins and mitochondria are transported along lengthy neuronal processes to assist in the proper assembly of developing synapses and activity-dependent remodeling of mature synapses. Neuronal transport is mediated by motor proteins that associate with their cargoes via adaptors and travel along the cytoskeleton within neuronal processes. Our previous studies in developing hippocampal neurons revealed that syntabulin acts as a KIF5B motor adaptor and mediates anterograde transport of presynaptic cargoes and mitochondria, presynaptic assembly, and activity-induced plasticity. Here, using cultured superior cervical ganglion neurons combined with manipulation of syntabulin expression or interference with its interaction with KIF5B, we uncover a crucial role for syntabulin in the maintenance of presynaptic function. Syntabulin loss-of-function delayed the appearance of synaptic activity in developing neurons and impaired synaptic transmission in mature neurons, including reduced basal activity, accelerated synaptic depression under high-frequency firing, slowed recovery rates after synaptic vesicle depletion, and impaired presynaptic short-term plasticity. These defects correlated with reduced mitochondrial distribution along neuronal processes and were rescued by the application of ATP within presynaptic neurons. These results suggest that syntabulin supports the axonal transport of mitochondria and concomitant ATP production at presynaptic terminals. ATP supply from locally stationed mitochondria is in turn necessary for the efficient mobilization of synaptic vesicles into the readily releasable pool. These findings emphasize the critical role of KIF5B-syntabulin-mediated axonal transport in the maintenance of presynaptic function and regulation of synaptic plasticity. PMID:19828815

  15. Computational quest for understanding the role of astrocyte signaling in synaptic transmission and plasticity

    PubMed Central

    De Pittà, Maurizio; Volman, Vladislav; Berry, Hugues; Parpura, Vladimir; Volterra, Andrea; Ben-Jacob, Eshel

    2012-01-01

    The complexity of the signaling network that underlies astrocyte-synapse interactions may seem discouraging when tackled from a theoretical perspective. Computational modeling is challenged by the fact that many details remain hitherto unknown and conventional approaches to describe synaptic function are unsuitable to explain experimental observations when astrocytic signaling is taken into account. Supported by experimental evidence is the possibility that astrocytes perform genuine information processing by means of their calcium signaling and are players in the physiological setting of the basal tone of synaptic transmission. Here we consider the plausibility of this scenario from a theoretical perspective, focusing on the modulation of synaptic release probability by the astrocyte and its implications on synaptic plasticity. The analysis of the signaling pathways underlying such modulation refines our notion of tripartite synapse and has profound implications on our understanding of brain function. PMID:23267326

  16. Synaptic transmission in decentralized axons of rock lobster.

    PubMed

    Parnas, I; Dudel, J; Atwood, H L

    1991-05-01

    Axons of the lobster deep abdominal extensor muscles were cut, and the resulting effects on their synaptic properties were observed. Decentralized axons continued to conduct action potentials and to release transmitter for at least a year after the cut. In controls, the single quanta were brief, and their decay phase could be fit by a single exponent, with a time constant of about 2 msec. Quanta of "cut axons" were slower, and their decay phase could not be fit by a single exponent. At midamplitude, the duration of the cut-axon quanta varied between 1.6 and 5.8 msec, as opposed to 0.6-2.8 msec in controls. Synaptic delay histograms were taken as a measure of time course of evoked release. In controls, evoked release lasted less than 10 msec at 14 degrees C. In cut axons, release lasted up to 10 times longer. The duration of release was not affected by tetrodotoxin, membrane depolarization, or hyperpolarization. It appears that the basic mechanism that controls the time course of evoked release is altered in degenerating terminals. PMID:1851218

  17. Chondroitin Sulfate Induces Depression of Synaptic Transmission and Modulation of Neuronal Plasticity in Rat Hippocampal Slices

    PubMed Central

    Albiñana, Elisa; Gutierrez-Luengo, Javier; Hernández-Juarez, Natalia; Baraibar, Andrés M.; Montell, Eulalia; Vergés, Josep; García, Antonio G.; Hernández-Guijo, Jesus M.

    2015-01-01

    It is currently known that in CNS the extracellular matrix is involved in synaptic stabilization and limitation of synaptic plasticity. However, it has been reported that the treatment with chondroitinase following injury allows the formation of new synapses and increased plasticity and functional recovery. So, we hypothesize that some components of extracellular matrix may modulate synaptic transmission. To test this hypothesis we evaluated the effects of chondroitin sulphate (CS) on excitatory synaptic transmission, cellular excitability, and neuronal plasticity using extracellular recordings in the CA1 area of rat hippocampal slices. CS caused a reversible depression of evoked field excitatory postsynaptic potentials in a concentration-dependent manner. CS also reduced the population spike amplitude evoked after orthodromic stimulation but not when the population spikes were antidromically evoked; in this last case a potentiation was observed. CS also enhanced paired-pulse facilitation and long-term potentiation. Our study provides evidence that CS, a major component of the brain perineuronal net and extracellular matrix, has a function beyond the structural one, namely, the modulation of synaptic transmission and neuronal plasticity in the hippocampus. PMID:26075099

  18. Phorbol ester enhances synaptic transmission at crustacean neuromuscular junctions.

    PubMed

    Gilat, E; Hochner, B

    1990-01-01

    Effects of phorbol ester (PE) (4 beta-phorbol-12,13-dibutyrate) on transmitter release were studied in the deep extensor neuromuscular system of the prawn, Macrobrachium rosenbergii. Our findings show that PE enhances transmitter release as indicated by an increase in the quantal content. PE had no post-synaptic effects. The increase in release is accompanied by a slight decline in twin pulse facilitation, suggesting a minor increase in Ca2+ entry. The fact that the increase in Ca2+ entry has a minor contribution to the PE effect is supported by the following observations: the duration of facilitation was not affected by PE, and 3,4-diaminopyridine (3,4-DAP), which by itself increased release, did not reduce the effect of PE. The time course of release was measured from synaptic delay histograms, upon which PE had no effect. This finding indicates that protein kinase C (PKC) is probably not involved in the rate limiting step of the process of secretion. The log/log plot of the initial part of the delay histogram is not affected by PE, suggesting a lack of effect on cooperativity of the release process. Increased release by loading the presynaptic terminal with Ca2+ either by pretreatment with Ca2+ ionophore or by frequent stimulation prevented further increase in release by PE. We conclude that the main effect of PE is confined to stages of release that are secondary to the first elevation in presynaptic Ca2+. PKC in this system probably plays a role in long term modulation of release, and it can be activated in processes leading to presynaptic Ca2+ accumulation. PMID:2169073

  19. Purines released from astrocytes inhibit excitatory synaptic transmission in the ventral horn of the spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Carlsen, Eva Meier; Perrier, Jean-François

    2014-01-01

    Spinal neuronal networks are essential for motor function. They are involved in the integration of sensory inputs and the generation of rhythmic motor outputs. They continuously adapt their activity to the internal state of the organism and to the environment. This plasticity can be provided by different neuromodulators. These substances are usually thought of being released by dedicated neurons. However, in other networks from the central nervous system synaptic transmission is also modulated by transmitters released from astrocytes. The star-shaped glial cell responds to neurotransmitters by releasing gliotransmitters, which in turn modulate synaptic transmission. Here we investigated if astrocytes present in the ventral horn of the spinal cord modulate synaptic transmission. We evoked synaptic inputs in ventral horn neurons recorded in a slice preparation from the spinal cord of neonatal mice. Neurons responded to electrical stimulation by monosynaptic EPSCs (excitatory monosynaptic postsynaptic currents). We used mice expressing the enhanced green fluorescent protein under the promoter of the glial fibrillary acidic protein to identify astrocytes. Chelating calcium with BAPTA in a single neighboring astrocyte increased the amplitude of synaptic currents. In contrast, when we selectively stimulated astrocytes by activating PAR-1 receptors with the peptide TFLLR, the amplitude of EPSCs evoked by a paired stimulation protocol was reduced. The paired-pulse ratio was increased, suggesting an inhibition occurring at the presynaptic side of synapses. In the presence of blockers for extracellular ectonucleotidases, TFLLR did not induce presynaptic inhibition. Puffing adenosine reproduced the effect of TFLLR and blocking adenosine A1 receptors with 8-Cyclopentyl-1,3-dipropylxanthine prevented it. Altogether our results show that ventral horn astrocytes are responsible for a tonic and a phasic inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission by releasing ATP, which gets converted into adenosine that binds to inhibitory presynaptic A1 receptors. PMID:24926236

  20. MATERNAL HYPOTHYROXENEMIA LEADS TO PERSISTENT DEFICITS IN HIPPOCAMPAL SYNAPTIC TRANSMISSION AND LEARNING IN OFFSPRING.

    EPA Science Inventory

    MATERNAL HYPOTHYROXINEMIA LEADS TO PERSISTENT DEFICITS IN HIPPOCAMPAL SYNAPTIC TRANSMISSION AND LEARNING IN RAT OFFSPRING. M.E. Gilbert1 and Li Sui2, Neurotoxicology Division, 1US EPA and 2National Research Council, Research Triangle Pk, NC 27711.
    While severe hypothyroidis...

  1. Hair cell afferent synapses.

    PubMed

    Glowatzki, Elisabeth; Grant, Lisa; Fuchs, Paul

    2008-08-01

    This review will cover advances in the study of hair cell afferent synaptic function occurring between 2005 and 2008. During this time, capacitance measurements of vesicular fusion have continued to be refined, optical methods have added insights regarding vesicle trafficking, and paired intracellular recordings have established the transfer function of the afferent synapse at high resolution. Further, genes have been identified with forms of deafness known as auditory neuropathy, and their role in afferent signaling explored in mouse models. With these advances, our view of the hair cell afferent synapse has continued to be refined, and surprising properties have been revealed that emphasize the unique role of this structure in neural function. PMID:18824101

  2. In vivo measurement of cell-type-specific synaptic connectivity and synaptic transmission in layer 2/3 mouse barrel cortex.

    PubMed

    Pala, Aurélie; Petersen, Carl C H

    2015-01-01

    Intracellular recordings of membrane potential in vitro have defined fundamental properties of synaptic communication. Much less is known about the properties of synaptic connectivity and synaptic transmission in vivo. Here, we combined single-cell optogenetics with whole-cell recordings to investigate glutamatergic synaptic transmission in vivo from single identified excitatory neurons onto two genetically defined subtypes of inhibitory GABAergic neurons in layer 2/3 mouse barrel cortex. We found that parvalbumin-expressing (PV) GABAergic neurons received unitary glutamatergic synaptic input with higher probability than somatostatin-expressing (Sst) GABAergic neurons. Unitary excitatory postsynaptic potentials onto PV neurons were also faster and more reliable than inputs onto Sst neurons. Excitatory synapses targeting Sst neurons displayed strong short-term facilitation, while those targeting PV neurons showed little short-term dynamics. Our results largely agree with in vitro measurements. We therefore demonstrate the technical feasibility of assessing functional cell-type-specific synaptic connectivity in vivo, allowing future investigations into context-dependent modulation of synaptic transmission. PMID:25543458

  3. The Chemokine MIP-1α/CCL3 impairs mouse hippocampal synaptic transmission, plasticity and memory

    PubMed Central

    Marciniak, Elodie; Faivre, Emilie; Dutar, Patrick; Alves Pires, Claire; Demeyer, Dominique; Caillierez, Raphaëlle; Laloux, Charlotte; Buée, Luc; Blum, David; Humez, Sandrine

    2015-01-01

    Chemokines are signaling molecules playing an important role in immune regulations. They are also thought to regulate brain development, neurogenesis and neuroendocrine functions. While chemokine upsurge has been associated with conditions characterized with cognitive impairments, their ability to modulate synaptic plasticity remains ill-defined. In the present study, we specifically evaluated the effects of MIP1-α/CCL3 towards hippocampal synaptic transmission, plasticity and spatial memory. We found that CCL3 (50 ng/ml) significantly reduced basal synaptic transmission at the Schaffer collateral-CA1 synapse without affecting NMDAR-mediated field potentials. This effect was ascribed to post-synaptic regulations, as CCL3 did not impact paired-pulse facilitation. While CCL3 did not modulate long-term depression (LTD), it significantly impaired long-term potentiation (LTP), an effect abolished by Maraviroc, a CCR5 specific antagonist. In addition, sub-chronic intracerebroventricular (icv) injections of CCL3 also impair LTP. In accordance with these electrophysiological findings, we demonstrated that the icv injection of CCL3 in mouse significantly impaired spatial memory abilities and long-term memory measured using the two-step Y-maze and passive avoidance tasks. These effects of CCL3 on memory were inhibited by Maraviroc. Altogether, these data suggest that the chemokine CCL3 is an hippocampal neuromodulator able to regulate synaptic plasticity mechanisms involved in learning and memory functions. PMID:26511387

  4. Nicotine Uses Neuron-Glia Communication to Enhance Hippocampal Synaptic Transmission and Long-term Memory

    PubMed Central

    López-Hidalgo, Mónica; Salgado-Puga, Karla; Alvarado-Martínez, Reynaldo; Medina, Andrea Cristina; Prado-Alcalá, Roberto A.; García-Colunga, Jesús

    2012-01-01

    Nicotine enhances synaptic transmission and facilitates long-term memory. Now it is known that bi-directional glia-neuron interactions play important roles in the physiology of the brain. However, the involvement of glial cells in the effects of nicotine has not been considered until now. In particular, the gliotransmitter D-serine, an endogenous co-agonist of NMDA receptors, enables different types of synaptic plasticity and memory in the hippocampus. Here, we report that hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity induced by nicotine was annulled by an enzyme that degrades endogenous D-serine, or by an NMDA receptor antagonist that acts at the D-serine binding site. Accordingly, both effects of nicotine: the enhancement of synaptic transmission and facilitation of long-term memory were eliminated by impairing glial cells with fluoroacetate, and were restored with exogenous D-serine. Together, these results show that glial D-serine is essential for the long-term effects of nicotine on synaptic plasticity and memory, and they highlight the roles of glial cells as key participants in brain functions. PMID:23185511

  5. The time course of minimal excitatory post-synaptic potentials evoked in spinal motoneurones by group la afferent fibres

    PubMed Central

    Jack, J. J. B.; Miller, S.; Porter, R.; Redman, S. J.

    1971-01-01

    1. Group Ia EPSPs were recorded from lumbosacral motoneurones in anaesthetized cats after almost complete section of the relevant dorsal roots. The EPSPs were usually of small amplitude (median value of 230 ?V) and an averaging device was used to improve the definition of their time course. 2. From a total of over 500 averaged EPSPs a smaller number (342) were subjected to analysis. The other EPSPs were rejected either because they showed signs of multiple origin in the rising phase of their time course (see Methods) or because the resting membrane potential of the cell was less than 50 mV. All the selected EPSPs had their rise time (from the 10 to the 90% level) and half-width measured, and a semilogarithmic plot of their decay time course was made. 3. 252 of the EPSPs showed an exponential decline in their later time course and the slope of this line was used to give an estimate of the membrane time constant. The range of the time constant for different motoneurones was 2·3-12·9 msec, with a mean value of 5·8 msec. 4. In ten cells an EPSP was recorded which was judged to be generated exclusively by synaptic knobs located on the soma. On this assumption measurements of the normalized rise time, half-width and break point time were used to estimate ?, ?? and L by the method suggested in Jack & Redman (1971b). The estimated value of ? ranged from 18 to 65. A positive correlation was found between ? and ?m, indicating that for these EPSPs the duration of current injection was independent of the membrane time constant. The peak time of the wave form of current injection was between 0·1 and 0·25 msec. The estimates of ?? were not thought to be very accurate. A lower limit of 4 was assumed and the highest measured value was 12, but in three cells the time course of the EPSP could not be fitted even with a very high value of ??. Some possible explanations for this discrepancy are mentioned in the Discussion. The electrotonic length of the dendrites (L) was usually greater than 1·0 ? and ranged between 0·75 and 1·5 ?. Evidence for an open-circuit termination of the dendrites was found in some cells. 5. The normalized values of the rise time and half-width were used to make an electrotonic distance allocation to the 246 EPSPs which were judged to be non-somatic. The method of allocation was not precise because individual values of ?? and L were not available for these motoneurones. Instead, a maximum possible range was assumed: for ??, 4-25; for L, 0·75-1·5. The range of ? was also assumed, from 12 to 100. With these values the motoneurone model (Jack & Redman, 1971b) was used to set limits within which the normalized rise time and half-width of all EPSPs, generated by current at a single point, should lie. Twenty of the 246 EPSPs lay outside these boundary lines and hence they did not receive a distance allocation. The remaining 226 were assigned values between 0·2 and 1·6 ? (in 0·2 ? steps); the majority of the allocations (183) were to the proximal electrotonic part of the dendrites (0·2, 0·4 or 0·6 ?). The relationship of these distance allocations to the histological results of Conradi (1969) is discussed. 6. It is concluded that there is no good evidence against the view that the main time course of minimal Ia EPSPs can be explained by their generation by a brief pulse of synaptic current and subsequent passive spread. PMID:5145723

  6. Enhanced synaptic transmission at the squid giant synapse by artificial seawater based on physically modified saline

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Soonwook; Yu, Eunah; Rabello, Guilherme; Merlo, Suelen; Zemmar, Ajmal; Walton, Kerry D.; Moreno, Herman; Moreira, Jorge E.; Sugimori, Mutsuyuki; Llinás, Rodolfo R.

    2014-01-01

    Superfusion of the squid giant synapse with artificial seawater (ASW) based on isotonic saline containing oxygen nanobubbles (RNS60 ASW) generates an enhancement of synaptic transmission. This was determined by examining the postsynaptic response to single and repetitive presynaptic spike activation, spontaneous transmitter release, and presynaptic voltage clamp studies. In the presence of RNS60 ASW single presynaptic stimulation elicited larger postsynaptic potentials (PSP) and more robust recovery from high frequency stimulation than in control ASW. Analysis of postsynaptic noise revealed an increase in spontaneous transmitter release with modified noise kinetics in RNS60 ASW. Presynaptic voltage clamp demonstrated an increased EPSP, without an increase in presynaptic ICa++ amplitude during RNS60 ASW superfusion. Synaptic release enhancement reached stable maxima within 5–10 min of RNS60 ASW superfusion and was maintained for the entire recording time, up to 1 h. Electronmicroscopic morphometry indicated a decrease in synaptic vesicle density and the number at active zones with an increase in the number of clathrin-coated vesicles (CCV) and large endosome-like vesicles near junctional sites. Block of mitochondrial ATP synthesis by presynaptic injection of oligomycin reduced spontaneous release and prevented the synaptic noise increase seen in RNS60 ASW. After ATP block the number of vesicles at the active zone and CCV was reduced, with an increase in large vesicles. The possibility that RNS60 ASW acts by increasing mitochondrial ATP synthesis was tested by direct determination of ATP levels in both presynaptic and postsynaptic structures. This was implemented using luciferin/luciferase photon emission, which demonstrated a marked increase in ATP synthesis following RNS60 administration. It is concluded that RNS60 positively modulates synaptic transmission by up-regulating ATP synthesis, thus leading to synaptic transmission enhancement. PMID:24575037

  7. Enhanced synaptic transmission at the squid giant synapse by artificial seawater based on physically modified saline.

    PubMed

    Choi, Soonwook; Yu, Eunah; Rabello, Guilherme; Merlo, Suelen; Zemmar, Ajmal; Walton, Kerry D; Moreno, Herman; Moreira, Jorge E; Sugimori, Mutsuyuki; Llinás, Rodolfo R

    2014-01-01

    Superfusion of the squid giant synapse with artificial seawater (ASW) based on isotonic saline containing oxygen nanobubbles (RNS60 ASW) generates an enhancement of synaptic transmission. This was determined by examining the postsynaptic response to single and repetitive presynaptic spike activation, spontaneous transmitter release, and presynaptic voltage clamp studies. In the presence of RNS60 ASW single presynaptic stimulation elicited larger postsynaptic potentials (PSP) and more robust recovery from high frequency stimulation than in control ASW. Analysis of postsynaptic noise revealed an increase in spontaneous transmitter release with modified noise kinetics in RNS60 ASW. Presynaptic voltage clamp demonstrated an increased EPSP, without an increase in presynaptic ICa(++) amplitude during RNS60 ASW superfusion. Synaptic release enhancement reached stable maxima within 5-10 min of RNS60 ASW superfusion and was maintained for the entire recording time, up to 1 h. Electronmicroscopic morphometry indicated a decrease in synaptic vesicle density and the number at active zones with an increase in the number of clathrin-coated vesicles (CCV) and large endosome-like vesicles near junctional sites. Block of mitochondrial ATP synthesis by presynaptic injection of oligomycin reduced spontaneous release and prevented the synaptic noise increase seen in RNS60 ASW. After ATP block the number of vesicles at the active zone and CCV was reduced, with an increase in large vesicles. The possibility that RNS60 ASW acts by increasing mitochondrial ATP synthesis was tested by direct determination of ATP levels in both presynaptic and postsynaptic structures. This was implemented using luciferin/luciferase photon emission, which demonstrated a marked increase in ATP synthesis following RNS60 administration. It is concluded that RNS60 positively modulates synaptic transmission by up-regulating ATP synthesis, thus leading to synaptic transmission enhancement. PMID:24575037

  8. From synaptically localized to volume transmission by nitric oxide.

    PubMed

    Garthwaite, John

    2016-01-01

    Nitric oxide (NO) functions widely as a transmitter/diffusible second messenger in the central nervous system, exerting physiological effects in target cells by binding to specialized guanylyl cyclase-coupled receptors, resulting in cGMP generation. Despite having many context-dependent physiological roles and being implicated in numerous disease states, there has been a lack of clarity about the ways that NO operates at the cellular and subcellular levels. Recently, several approaches have been used to try to gain a more concrete, quantitative understanding of this unique signalling pathway. These approaches have included analysing the kinetics of NO receptor function, real-time imaging of cellular NO signal transduction in target cells, and the use of ultrasensitive detector cells to record NO as it is being generated from native sources in brain tissue. The current picture is that, when formed in a synapse, NO is likely to act only very locally, probably mostly within the confines of that synapse, and to exist only in picomolar concentrations. Nevertheless, closely neighbouring synapses may also be within reach, raising the possibility of synaptic crosstalk. By engaging its enzyme-coupled receptors, the low NO concentrations are able to stimulate physiological (submicromolar) increases in cGMP concentration in an activity-dependent manner. When many NO-emitting neurones or synapses are active simultaneously in a tissue region, NO can act more like a volume transmitter to influence, and perhaps coordinate, the behaviour of cells within that region, irrespective of their identity and anatomical connectivity. PMID:26486504

  9. Growth hormone modulates hippocampal excitatory synaptic transmission and plasticity in old rats

    PubMed Central

    Molina, Doris P.; Ariwodola, Olusegun J.; Linville, Constance; Sonntag, William E.; Weiner, Jeff L.; Brunso-Bechtold, Judy K.; Adams, Michelle M.

    2011-01-01

    Alterations in the alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionate (AMPA-R) receptor and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDA-R) have been documented in aged animals and may contribute to changes in hippocampal-dependent memory. Growth Hormone (GH) regulates AMPA-R and NMDA-R-dependent excitatory transmission and decreases with age. Chronic GH treatment mitigates age-related cognitive decline. An in vitro CA1 hippocampal slice preparation was used to compare hippocampal excitatory transmission and plasticity in old animals treated for 6–8 months with either saline or GH. Our findings indicate that GH treatment restores NMDA-R dependent basal synaptic transmission in old rats to young adult levels and enhances both AMPA-R-dependent basal synaptic transmission and long-term potentiation. These alterations in synaptic function occurred in the absence of changes in presynaptic function, as measured by paired-pulse ratios, the total protein levels of AMPA-R and NMDA-R subunits or in plasma or hippocampal levels of insulin-like growth factor-I. These data suggest a direct role for GH in altering age-related changes in excitatory transmission and provide a possible cellular mechanism through which GH changes the course of cognitive decline. PMID:22015312

  10. CNQX and AMPA inhibit electrical synaptic transmission: a potential interaction between electrical and glutamatergic synapses.

    PubMed

    Li, Qin; Burrell, Brian D

    2008-09-01

    Electrical synapses play an important role in signaling between neurons and the synaptic connections between many neurons possess both electrical and chemical components. Although modulation of electrical synapses is frequently observed, the cellular processes that mediate such changes have not been studied as thoroughly as plasticity in chemical synapses. In the leech (Hirudo sp), the competitive AMPA receptor antagonist CNQX inhibited transmission at the rectifying electrical synapse of a mixed glutamatergic/electrical synaptic connection. This CNQX-mediated inhibition of the electrical synapse was blocked by concanavalin A (Con A) and dynamin inhibitory peptide (DIP), both of which are known to inhibit endocytosis of neurotransmitter receptors. CNQX-mediated inhibition was also blocked by pep2-SVKI (SVKI), a synthetic peptide that prevents internalization of AMPA-type glutamate receptor. AMPA itself also inhibited electrical synaptic transmission and this AMPA-mediated inhibition was partially blocked by Con A, DIP and SVKI. Low frequency stimulation induced long-term depression (LTD) in both the electrical and glutamatergic components of these synapses and this LTD was blocked by SVKI. GYKI 52466, a selective non-competitive antagonist of AMPA receptors, did not affect the electrical EPSP, although it did block the glutamatergic component of these synapses. CNQX did not affect non-rectifying electrical synapses in two different pairs of neurons. These results suggest an interaction between AMPA-type glutamate receptors and the gap junction proteins that mediate electrical synaptic transmission. This putative interaction between glutamate receptors and gap junction proteins represents a novel mechanism for regulating the strength of synaptic transmission. PMID:18601913

  11. CNQX and AMPA inhibit electrical synaptic transmission: a potential interaction between electrical and glutamatergic synapses

    PubMed Central

    Li, Qin; Burrell, Brian D.

    2008-01-01

    Electrical synapses play an important role in signaling between neurons and the synaptic connections between many neurons possess both electrical and chemical components. Although modulation of electrical synapses is frequently observed, the cellular processes that mediate such changes have not been studied as thoroughly as plasticity in chemical synapses. In the leech (Hirudo sp), the competitive AMPA receptor antagonist CNQX inhibited transmission at the rectifying electrical synapse of a mixed glutamatergic/electrical synaptic connection. This CNQX-mediated inhibition of the electrical synapse was blocked by concanavalin A (Con A) and dynamin inhibitory peptide (DIP), both of which are known to inhibit endocytosis of neurotransmitter receptors. CNQX-mediated inhibition was also blocked by pep2-SVKI (SVKI), a synthetic peptide that prevents internalization of AMPA-type glutamate receptor. AMPA itself also inhibited electrical synaptic transmission and this AMPA-mediated inhibition was partially blocked by Con A, DIP and SVKI. Low frequency stimulation induced long-term depression (LTD) in both the electrical and chemical components of these synapses and this LTD was blocked by SVKI. GYKI 52466, a selective non-competitive antagonist of AMPA receptors, did not affect the electrical EPSP, although it did block the chemical component of these synapses. CNQX did not affect non-rectifying electrical synapses in two different pairs of neurons. These results suggest an interaction between AMPA-type glutamate receptors and the gap junction proteins that mediate electrical synaptic transmission. This putative interaction between glutamate receptors and gap junction proteins represents a novel mechanism for regulating the strength of synaptic transmission. PMID:18601913

  12. First effects of rising amyloid-? in transgenic mouse brain: synaptic transmission and gene expression.

    PubMed

    Cummings, Damian M; Liu, Wenfei; Portelius, Erik; Bayram, Sevinç; Yasvoina, Marina; Ho, Sui-Hin; Smits, Hélène; Ali, Shabinah S; Steinberg, Rivka; Pegasiou, Chrysia-Maria; James, Owain T; Matarin, Mar; Richardson, Jill C; Zetterberg, Henrik; Blennow, Kaj; Hardy, John A; Salih, Dervis A; Edwards, Frances A

    2015-07-01

    Detecting and treating Alzheimer's disease, before cognitive deficits occur, has become the health challenge of our time. The earliest known event in Alzheimer's disease is rising amyloid-?. Previous studies have suggested that effects on synaptic transmission may precede plaque deposition. Here we report how relative levels of different soluble amyloid-? peptides in hippocampus, preceding plaque deposition, relate to synaptic and genomic changes. Immunoprecipitation-mass spectrometry was used to measure the early rise of different amyloid-? peptides in a mouse model of increasing amyloid-? ('TASTPM', transgenic for familial Alzheimer's disease genes APP/PSEN1). In the third postnatal week, several amyloid-? peptides were above the limit of detection, including amyloid-?40, amyloid-?38 and amyloid-?42 with an intensity ratio of 6:3:2, respectively. By 2 months amyloid-? levels had only increased by 50% and although the ratio of the different peptides remained constant, the first changes in synaptic currents, compared to wild-type mice could be detected with patch-clamp recordings. Between 2 and 4 months old, levels of amyloid-?40 rose by ?7-fold, but amyloid-?42 rose by 25-fold, increasing the amyloid-?42:amyloid-?40 ratio to 1:1. Only at 4 months did plaque deposition become detectable and only in some mice; however, synaptic changes were evident in all hippocampal fields. These changes included increased glutamate release probability (P < 0.001, n = 7-9; consistent with the proposed physiological effect of amyloid-?) and loss of spontaneous action potential-mediated activity in the cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) and dentate gyrus regions of the hippocampus (P < 0.001, n = 7). Hence synaptic changes occur when the amyloid-? levels and amyloid-?42:amyloid-?40 ratio are still low compared to those necessary for plaque deposition. Genome-wide microarray analysis revealed changes in gene expression at 2-4 months including synaptic genes being strongly affected but often showing significant changes only by 4 months. We thus demonstrate that, in a mouse model of rising amyloid-?, the initial deposition of plaques does not occur until several months after the first amyloid-? becomes detectable but coincides with a rapid acceleration in the rise of amyloid-? levels and the amyloid-?42:amyloid-?40 ratio. Prior to acceleration, however, there is already a pronounced synaptic dysfunction, reflected as changes in synaptic transmission and altered gene expression, indicating that restoring synaptic function early in the disease progression may represent the earliest possible target for intervention in the onset of Alzheimer's disease. PMID:25981962

  13. Presynaptic mechanisms underlying cannabinoid inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission in rat striatal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Chiung-Chun; Lo, Shiow-Win; Hsu, Kuei-Sen

    2001-01-01

    The striatum is a crucial site of action for the motor effects of cannabinoids (CBs). However, the electrophysiological consequences of activation of CB receptors on the striatal neurons have not been established. Here we report for the first time that the cannabimimetic aminoalkylindole WIN 55,212-2 and the endogenous cannabinoid anandamide substantially depress corticostriatal glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto striatal neurons in the brain slice preparation. The selective CB1 receptor antagonist SR 141716 effectively reversed this inhibition. WIN 55,212-2 significantly increased the paired-pulse facilitation of synaptically evoked EPSCs, while having no effect on the sensitivity of postsynaptic neurons to α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid. WIN 55,212-2 also reduced the frequency of spontaneous, action potential-dependent EPSCs (sEPSCs) without altering their amplitude distribution. Superfusion of WIN 55,212-2 elicited a membrane hyperpolarization accompanied by a decrease in input resistance. Both effects were blocked by intracellular caesium. In contrast, intracellular caesium failed to affect WIN 55,212-2-mediated synaptic inhibition. The WIN 55,212-2-mediated synaptic inhibition was blocked by the Gi/o protein inhibitor pertussis toxin (PTX), but not by the GABAA receptor antagonist bicuculline or GABAB receptor antagonist SCH 50911. Pretreatment with the N-type Ca2+ channel antagonist ω-conotoxin GVIA selectively abolished the WIN-55,212-2-mediated synaptic inhibition. These results suggest that cannabinoids depress the corticostriatal glutamatergic synaptic transmission through the activation of presynaptic CB1 receptors to inhibit N-type Ca2+ channel activity, which in turn reduces glutamate release. The presynaptic action of cannabinoids is mediated by a PTX-sensitive Gi/o protein-coupled signalling pathway. PMID:11313442

  14. Tet3 regulates synaptic transmission and homeostatic plasticity via DNA oxidation and repair

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Huimei; Su, Yijing; Shin, Jaehoon; Zhong, Chun; Guo, Junjie U.; Weng, Yi-Lan; Gao, Fuying; Geschwind, Daniel H.; Coppola, Giovanni; Ming, Guo-li; Song, Hongjun

    2015-01-01

    Contrary to the long-held belief that DNA methylation of terminally differentiated cells is permanent and essentially immutable, post-mitotic neurons exhibit extensive DNA demethylation. The cellular function of active DNA demethylation in neurons, however, remains largely unknown. Tet family proteins oxidize 5-methylcytosine to initiate active DNA demethylation through the base-excision repair pathway. Here, we show that synaptic activity bi-directionally regulates neuronal Tet3 expression. Functionally, knockdown of Tet or inhibition of base-excision repair in hippocampal neurons elevates excitatory glutamatergic synaptic transmission, whereas overexpressing Tet3 or Tet1 catalytic domain decreases it. Furthermore, dysregulation of Tet3 signalling prevents homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Mechanistically, Tet3 dictates neuronal surface GluR1 levels. RNA-seq analyses further revealed a pivotal role of Tet3 in regulating gene expression in response to global synaptic activity changes. Thus, Tet3 serves as a synaptic activity sensor to epigenetically regulate fundamental properties and meta-plasticity of neurons via active DNA demethylation. PMID:25915473

  15. Role of Rab27 in synaptic transmission at the squid giant synapse.

    PubMed

    Yu, Eunah; Kanno, Eiko; Choi, Soonwook; Sugimori, Mutsuyuki; Moreira, Jorge E; Llinás, Rodolfo R; Fukuda, Mitsunori

    2008-10-14

    Small GTPase Rab is a member of a large family of Ras-related proteins, highly conserved in eukaryotic cells, and thought to regulate specific type(s) and/or specific step(s) in intracellular membrane trafficking. Given our interest in synaptic transmission, we addressed the possibility that Rab27 (a close isoform of Rab3) could be involved in cytosolic synaptic vesicle mobilization. Indeed, preterminal injection of a specific antibody against squid Rab27 (anti-sqRab27 antibody) combined with confocal microscopy demonstrated that Rab27 is present on squid synaptic vesicles. Electrophysiological study of injected synapses showed that the anti-sqRab27 antibody inhibited synaptic release in a stimulation-dependent manner without affecting presynaptic action potentials or inward Ca(2+) current. This result was confirmed in in vitro synaptosomes by using total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy. Thus, synaptosomal Ca(2+)-stimulated release of FM1-43 dye was greatly impaired by intraterminal anti-sqRab27 antibody. Ultrastructural analysis of the injected giant preterminal further showed a reduced number of docked synaptic vesicles and an increase in nondocked vesicular profiles distant from the active zone. These results, taken together, indicate that Rab27 is primarily involved in the maturation of recycled vesicles and/or their transport to the presynaptic active zone in the squid giant synapse. PMID:18840683

  16. Calcium-induced calcium release in rod photoreceptor terminals boosts synaptic transmission during maintained depolarization

    PubMed Central

    Cadetti, Lucia; Bryson, Eric J.; Ciccone, Cory A.; Rabl, Katalin; Thoreson, Wallace B.

    2008-01-01

    We examined the contribution of calcium-induced calcium release (CICR) to synaptic transmission from rod photoreceptor terminals. Whole-cell recording and confocal calcium imaging experiments were conducted on rods with intact synaptic terminals in a retinal slice preparation from salamander. Low concentrations of ryanodine stimulated calcium increases in rod terminals, consistent with the presence of ryanodine receptors. Application of strong depolarizing steps (?70 to ?10 mV) exceeding 200 ms or longer in duration evoked a wave of calcium that spread across the synaptic terminals of voltage-clamped rods. This secondary calcium increase was blocked by high concentrations of ryanodine, indicating it was due to CICR. Ryanodine (50 ?M) had no significant effect on rod calcium current (Ica) although it slightly diminished rod light-evoked voltage responses. Bath application of 50 ?M ryanodine strongly inhibited light-evoked currents in horizontal cells. Whether applied extracellularly or delivered into the rod cell through the patch pipette, ryanodine (50 ?M) also inhibited excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs) evoked in horizontal cells by depolarizing steps applied to rods. Ryanodine caused a preferential reduction in the later portions of EPSCs evoked by depolarizing steps of 200 ms or longer. These results indicate that CICR enhances calcium increases in rod terminals evoked by sustained depolarization, which in turn acts to boost synaptic exocytosis from rods. PMID:16819987

  17. Statistical models of synaptic transmission evaluated using the expectation-maximization algorithm.

    PubMed Central

    Stricker, C; Redman, S

    1994-01-01

    Amplitude fluctuations of evoked synaptic responses can be used to extract information on the probabilities of release at the active sites, and on the amplitudes of the synaptic responses generated by transmission at each active site. The parameters that describe this process must be obtained from an incomplete data set represented by the probability density of the evoked synaptic response. In this paper, the equations required to calculate these parameters using the Expectation-Maximization algorithm and the maximum likelihood criterion have been derived for a variety of statistical models of synaptic transmission. These models are ones where the probabilities associated with the different discrete amplitudes in the evoked responses are a) unconstrained, b) binomial, and c) compound binomial. The discrete amplitudes may be separated by equal (quantal) or unequal amounts, with or without quantal variance. Alternative models have been considered where the variance associated with the discrete amplitudes is sufficiently large such that no quantal amplitudes can be detected. These models involve the sum of a normal distribution (to represent failures) and a unimodal distribution (to represent the evoked responses). The implementation of the algorithm is described in each case, and its accuracy and convergence have been demonstrated. PMID:7948679

  18. Controlling the first-spike latency response of a single neuron via unreliable synaptic transmission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uzuntarla, M.; Ozer, M.; Guo, D. Q.

    2012-08-01

    Previous experimental and theoretical studies suggest that first-spike latency is an efficient information carrier and may contain more amounts of neural information than those of other spikes. Therefore, the biophysical mechanisms underlying the first-spike response latency are of considerable interest. Here we present a systematical investigation on the response latency dynamics of a single Hodgkin-Huxley neuron subject to both a suprathreshold periodic forcing and background activity. In contrast to most earlier works, we consider a biophysically realistic noise model which allows us to relate the synaptic background activity to unreliable synapses and latency. Our results show that first-spike latency of a neuron can be regulated via unreliable synapses. An intermediate level of successful synaptic transmission probability significantly increases both the latency and its jitter, indicating that the unreliable synaptic transmission constrains the signal detection ability of neurons. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the destructive influence of synaptic unreliability can be controlled by the input regime and by the excitatory coupling strength. Better tuning of these two factors could help the H-H neuron encode information more accurately in terms of the first-spike latency.

  19. Modulation of Glutamatergic Synaptic Transmission in the Bed Nucleus of the Stria Terminalis

    PubMed Central

    McElligott, Zoé Anastasia; Winder, Danny G.

    2009-01-01

    Glutamate, catecholamine and neuropeptide signaling within the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST) have all been identified as key participants in anxiety-like behaviors and behaviors related to withdrawal from exposure to substances of abuse. The BNST is thought to serve as a key relay between limbic cognitive centers and reward, stress and anxiety nuclei. Human studies and animal models have demonstrated that stressors and drugs of abuse can result in long term behavioral modifications that can culminate in psychological diseases such as addiction and post-traumatic stress disorder. The ability of catecholamines and neuropeptides to influence synaptic glutamatergic transmission (stemming from cognitive centers) within the BNST may have profound consequences over these behaviors. In this review we highlight studies examining synaptic plasticity and modulation of excitatory transmission within the BNST, emphasizing how such modulation may result in alterations in anxiety and reward related behavior. PMID:19524008

  20. Synaptic and circuit mechanisms promoting broadband transmission of olfactory stimulus dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Nagel, Katherine I.; Hong, Elizabeth J.; Wilson, Rachel I.

    2014-01-01

    Sensory stimuli fluctuate on many timescales. However, short-term plasticity causes synapses to act as temporal filters, limiting the range of frequencies they can transmit. How synapses in vivo might transmit a range of frequencies in spite of short-term plasticity is poorly understood. The first synapse in the Drosophila olfactory system exhibits short-term depression, and yet can transmit broadband signals. Here we describe two mechanisms that broaden the frequency characteristics of this synapse. First, two distinct excitatory postsynaptic currents transmit signals on different timescales. Second, presynaptic inhibition dynamically updates synaptic properties to promote accurate transmission of signals across a wide range of frequencies. Inhibition is transient but grows slowly, and simulations show that these two features of inhibition promote broadband synaptic transmission. Dynamic inhibition is often thought to restrict the temporal patterns that a neuron responds to, but our results illustrate a different idea: inhibition can expand the bandwidth of neural coding. PMID:25485755

  1. Synaptic and circuit mechanisms promoting broadband transmission of olfactory stimulus dynamics.

    PubMed

    Nagel, Katherine I; Hong, Elizabeth J; Wilson, Rachel I

    2015-01-01

    Sensory stimuli fluctuate on many timescales. However, short-term plasticity causes synapses to act as temporal filters, limiting the range of frequencies that they can transmit. How synapses in vivo might transmit a range of frequencies in spite of short-term plasticity is poorly understood. The first synapse in the Drosophila olfactory system exhibits short-term depression, but can transmit broadband signals. Here we describe two mechanisms that broaden the frequency characteristics of this synapse. First, two distinct excitatory postsynaptic currents transmit signals on different timescales. Second, presynaptic inhibition dynamically updates synaptic properties to promote accurate transmission of signals across a wide range of frequencies. Inhibition is transient, but grows slowly, and simulations reveal that these two features of inhibition promote broadband synaptic transmission. Dynamic inhibition is often thought to restrict the temporal patterns that a neuron responds to, but our results illustrate a different idea: inhibition can expand the bandwidth of neural coding. PMID:25485755

  2. Repeated morphine treatment alters cannabinoid modulation of GABAergic synaptic transmission within the rat periaqueductal grey

    PubMed Central

    Wilson-Poe, A R; Lau, B K; Vaughan, C W

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Cannabinoids and opioids produce antinociception by modulating GABAergic synaptic transmission in a descending analgesic pathway from the midbrain periaqueductal grey (PAG). While chronic opioid treatment produces opioid tolerance, it has recently been shown to enhance cannabinoid-induced antinociception within the PAG. This study examined the effect of repeated opioid treatment on opioid and cannabinoid presynaptic modulation of GABAergic synaptic transmission in PAG. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH Midbrain PAG slices were prepared from untreated rats, and rats that had undergone repeated morphine or saline pretreatment. Whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings were made from neurons within the ventrolateral PAG. KEY RESULTS In slices from untreated animals, the cannabinoid receptor agonist WIN55212 and the ? receptor agonist DAMGO inhibited electrically evoked GABAA receptor-mediated inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) IPSCs in PAG neurons, with IC50s of 30 and 100 nM respectively. The inhibition of evoked IPSCs produced by WIN55212 (30 nM) and DAMGO (100 nM) was similar in PAG neurons from morphine- and saline-treated animals. The cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonist AM251 increased the frequency of spontaneous miniature IPSCs in PAG neurons from repeated morphine-, but not saline-treated animals. DAMGO inhibition of evoked IPSCs was enhanced in the presence of AM251 in morphine-, but not saline-treated animals. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS These results indicate that the efficiency of agonist-induced inhibition of GABAergic synaptic transmission is enhanced by morphine treatment, although this is dampened by endocannabinoid-mediated tonic inhibition. Thus, endocannabinoid modulation of synaptic transmission could provide an alternative analgesic approach in a morphine-tolerant state. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2015.172.issue-2 PMID:24916363

  3. Substance P depresses excitatory synaptic transmission in the nucleus accumbens through dopaminergic and purinergic mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Kombian, Samuel B; Ananthalakshmi, Kethireddy V V; Parvathy, Subramanian S; Matowe, Wandikayi C

    2003-02-01

    Substance P (SP) is an undecapeptide that is co-localized with conventional transmitters in the nucleus accumbens (NAc). Its neurochemical and behavioral effects resemble those of cocaine and amphetamine. How SP accomplishes these effects is not known, partly because its cellular and synaptic effects are not well characterized. Using whole cell and nystatin-perforated patch recording in rat forebrain slices, we show here that SP, an excitatory neuropeptide, depresses evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) and potentials (EPSPs) in NAc through intermediate neuromodulators. SP caused a partially reversible, dose-dependent decrease in evoked EPSCs. This effect was mimicked by a neurokinin-1 (NK1) receptor-selective agonist, [Sar(9), Met (O(2))(11)]-SP and blocked by a NK1 receptor-selective antagonist, L 732 138. Both the SP- and [Sar(9), Met (O(2))(11)]-SP-induced synaptic depressions were accompanied by increases in paired pulse ratio (PPR), effects that were also blocked by L 732 138. In contrast to its effect on PPR, SP did not produce significant changes in the holding current, input resistance, EPSC decay rate (tau), and steady-state I-V curves of the recorded cells. The SP-induced synaptic depressions were prevented by dopamine receptor blockade using SCH23390 and haloperidol, but not by sulpiride. In addition, the SP-induced synaptic depression was blocked by an adenosine A1 receptor blocker 8-cyclopentyltheophylline (8-CPT) but not the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist D-APV. These data show that SP, by activating presynaptic NK1 receptors, depresses excitatory synaptic transmission indirectly by enhancing extracellular dopamine and adenosine levels. Since the cellular and synaptic effects of SP resemble those of cocaine and amphetamine, it may serve as an endogenous psychogenic peptide. PMID:12574450

  4. Effects of Modafinil on Behavioral Learning and Hippocampal Synaptic Transmission in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Chong; Wang, Hai-Xia; Li, Chu-Hua; Huang, Jun-Ni; Xiao, Peng

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Modafinil is a wake-promoting agent that has been proposed to improve cognitive performance at the preclinical and clinical levels. Since there is insufficient evidence for modafinil to be regarded as a cognitive enhancer, the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of chronic modafinil administration on behavioral learning in healthy adult rats. Methods: Y-maze training was used to assess learning performance, and the whole-cell patch clamp technique was used to assess synaptic transmission in pyramidal neurons of the hippocampal CA1 region of rats. Results: Intraperitoneal administration of modafinil at 200 mg/kg or 300 mg/kg significantly improved learning performance. Furthermore, perfusion with 1mM modafinil enhanced the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous postsynaptic currents and spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents in CA1 pyramidal neurons in hippocampal slices. However, the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents in CA1 pyramidal neurons were inhibited by treatment with 1mM modafinil. Conclusions: These results indicate that modafinil improves learning and memory in rats possibly by enhancing glutamatergic excitatory synaptic transmission and inhibiting GABAergic (gamma-aminobutyric acid-ergic) inhibitory synaptic transmission. PMID:26739176

  5. Adult Onset-hypothyroidism has Minimal Effects on Synaptic Transmission in the Hippocampus of Rats Independent of Hypothermia

    EPA Science Inventory

    Introduction: Thyroid hormones (TH) influence central nervous system (CNS) function during development and in adulthood. The hippocampus, a brain area critical for learning and memory is sensitive to TH insufficiency. Synaptic transmission in the hippocampus is impaired following...

  6. RoR2 functions as a noncanonical Wnt receptor that regulates NMDAR-mediated synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Cerpa, Waldo; Latorre-Esteves, Elena; Barria, Andres

    2015-01-01

    Wnt signaling has a well-established role as a regulator of nervous system development, but its role in the maintenance and regulation of established synapses in the mature brain remains poorly understood. At excitatory glutamatergic synapses, NMDA receptors (NMDARs) have a fundamental role in synaptogenesis, synaptic plasticity, and learning and memory; however, it is not known what controls their number and subunit composition. Here we show that the receptor tyrosine kinase-like orphan receptor 2 (RoR2) functions as a Wnt receptor required to maintain basal NMDAR-mediated synaptic transmission. In addition, RoR2 activation by a noncanonical Wnt ligand activates PKC and JNK and acutely enhances NMDAR synaptic responses. Regulation of a key component of glutamatergic synapses through RoR2 provides a mechanism for Wnt signaling to modulate synaptic transmission, synaptic plasticity, and brain function acutely beyond embryonic development. PMID:25825749

  7. Postnatal aniracetam treatment improves prenatal ethanol induced attenuation of AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Wijayawardhane, Nayana; Shonesy, Brian C; Vaglenova, Julia; Vaithianathan, Thirumalini; Carpenter, Mark; Breese, Charles R; Dityatev, Alexander; Suppiramaniam, Vishnu

    2007-06-01

    Aniracetam is a nootropic compound and an allosteric modulator of AMPA receptors (AMPARs) which mediate synaptic mechanisms of learning and memory. Here we analyzed impairments in AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission caused by moderate prenatal ethanol exposure and investigated the effects of postnatal aniracetam treatment on these abnormalities. Pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats were gavaged with ethanol or isocaloric sucrose throughout pregnancy, and subsequently the offspring were treated with aniracetam on postnatal days (PND) 18 to 27. Hippocampal slices prepared from these pups on PND 28 to 34 were used for the whole-cell patch-clamp recordings of AMPAR-mediated spontaneous and miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents in CA1 pyramidal cells. Our results indicate that moderate ethanol exposure during pregnancy results in impaired hippocampal AMPAR-mediated neurotransmission, and critically timed aniracetam treatment can abrogate this deficiency. These results highlight the possibility that aniracetam treatment can restore synaptic transmission and ameliorate cognitive deficits associated with the fetal alcohol syndrome. PMID:17493826

  8. LGI1 acts presynaptically to regulate excitatory synaptic transmission during early postnatal development.

    PubMed

    Boillot, Morgane; Lee, Chun-Yao; Allene, Camille; Leguern, Eric; Baulac, Stéphanie; Rouach, Nathalie

    2016-01-01

    The secreted leucine-rich glioma inactivated 1 (LGI1) protein is an important actor for human seizures of both genetic and autoimmune etiology: mutations in LGI1 cause inherited temporal lobe epilepsy, while LGI1 is involved in antibody-mediated encephalitis. Remarkably, Lgi1-deficient (Lgi1(-/-)) mice recapitulate the epileptic disorder and display early-onset spontaneous seizures. To understand how Lgi1-deficiency leads to seizures during postnatal development, we here investigated the early functional and structural defects occurring before seizure onset in Lgi1(-/-) mice. We found an increased excitatory synaptic transmission in hippocampal slices from Lgi1(-/-) mice. No structural alteration in the morphology of pyramidal cell dendrites and synapses was observed at this stage, indicating that Lgi1-deficiency is unlikely to trigger early developmental abnormalities. Consistent with the presynaptic subcellular localization of the protein, Lgi1-deficiency caused presynaptic defects, with no alteration in postsynaptic AMPA receptor activity in Lgi1-/- pyramidal cells before seizure onset. Presynaptic dysfunction led to increased synaptic glutamate levels, which were associated with hyperexcitable neuronal networks. Altogether, these data show that Lgi1 acts presynaptically as a negative modulator of excitatory synaptic transmission during early postnatal development. We therefore here reveal that increased presynaptic glutamate release is a key early event resulting from Lgi1-deficiency, which likely contributes to epileptogenesis. PMID:26878798

  9. LGI1 acts presynaptically to regulate excitatory synaptic transmission during early postnatal development

    PubMed Central

    Boillot, Morgane; Lee, Chun-Yao; Allene, Camille; Leguern, Eric; Baulac, Stéphanie; Rouach, Nathalie

    2016-01-01

    The secreted leucine-rich glioma inactivated 1 (LGI1) protein is an important actor for human seizures of both genetic and autoimmune etiology: mutations in LGI1 cause inherited temporal lobe epilepsy, while LGI1 is involved in antibody-mediated encephalitis. Remarkably, Lgi1-deficient (Lgi1−/−) mice recapitulate the epileptic disorder and display early-onset spontaneous seizures. To understand how Lgi1-deficiency leads to seizures during postnatal development, we here investigated the early functional and structural defects occurring before seizure onset in Lgi1−/− mice. We found an increased excitatory synaptic transmission in hippocampal slices from Lgi1−/− mice. No structural alteration in the morphology of pyramidal cell dendrites and synapses was observed at this stage, indicating that Lgi1-deficiency is unlikely to trigger early developmental abnormalities. Consistent with the presynaptic subcellular localization of the protein, Lgi1-deficiency caused presynaptic defects, with no alteration in postsynaptic AMPA receptor activity in Lgi1−/− pyramidal cells before seizure onset. Presynaptic dysfunction led to increased synaptic glutamate levels, which were associated with hyperexcitable neuronal networks. Altogether, these data show that Lgi1 acts presynaptically as a negative modulator of excitatory synaptic transmission during early postnatal development. We therefore here reveal that increased presynaptic glutamate release is a key early event resulting from Lgi1-deficiency, which likely contributes to epileptogenesis. PMID:26878798

  10. Taurine-Induced Long-Lasting Enhancement of Synaptic Transmission in Mice: Role of Transporters

    PubMed Central

    Sergeeva, O A; Chepkova, A N; Doreulee, N; Eriksson, K S; Poelchen, W; Mönnighoff, I; Heller-Stilb, B; Warskulat, U; Häussinger, D; Haas, H L

    2003-01-01

    Taurine, a major osmolyte in the brain evokes a long-lasting enhancement (LLETAU) of synaptic transmission in hippocampal and cortico-striatal slices. Hippocampal LLETAU was abolished by the GABA uptake blocker nipecotic acid (NPA) but not by the taurine-uptake inhibitor guanidinoethyl sulphonate (GES). Striatal LLETAU was sensitive to GES but not to NPA. Semiquantitative PCR analysis and immunohistochemistry revealed that taurine transporter expression is significantly higher in the striatum than in the hippocampus. Taurine transporter-deficient mice displayed very low taurine levels in both structures and a low ability to develop LLETAU in the striatum, but not in the hippocampus. The different mechanisms of taurine-induced synaptic plasticity may reflect the different vulnerabilities of these brain regions under pathological conditions that are accompanied by osmotic changes such as hepatic encephalopathy. PMID:12824447

  11. [Analysis of central synaptic transmission with the slice-patch-clamp technique].

    PubMed

    Momiyama, Toshihiko

    2003-03-01

    More than ten years have passed since the slice-patch-clamp technique was established as a powerful method for the analysis of central synaptic transmission. Although this technique was restricted only to young animal preparations, we can now apply it to several synapses in slices obtained from adult animals, owing to recent advances in optics or slicers. In addition, advanced techniques have been recently available such as paired whole-cell recording from two or more synaptically connected neurons, recording from dendrites or some presynaptic terminals. Further developments are expected in both of the two directions: more microscopic analysis such as investigating glutamatergic sensitivities of single dendritic spines in combination with two-photon photolysis of a caged-glutamate compound and analysis in a more physiological function-oriented manner such as investigation of pain perception mechanisms using in vivo patch-clamp technique. PMID:12673951

  12. Short-term plasticity and modulation of synaptic transmission at mammalian inhibitory cholinergic olivocochlear synapses

    PubMed Central

    Katz, Eleonora; Elgoyhen, Ana Belén

    2014-01-01

    The organ of Corti, the mammalian sensory epithelium of the inner ear, has two types of mechanoreceptor cells, inner hair cells (IHCs) and outer hair cells (OHCs). In this sensory epithelium, vibrations produced by sound waves are transformed into electrical signals. When depolarized by incoming sounds, IHCs release glutamate and activate auditory nerve fibers innervating them and OHCs, by virtue of their electromotile property, increase the amplification and fine tuning of sound signals. The medial olivocochlear (MOC) system, an efferent feedback system, inhibits OHC activity and thereby reduces the sensitivity and sharp tuning of cochlear afferent fibers. During neonatal development, IHCs fire Ca2+ action potentials which evoke glutamate release promoting activity in the immature auditory system in the absence of sensory stimuli. During this period, MOC fibers also innervate IHCs and are thought to modulate their firing rate. Both the MOC-OHC and the MOC-IHC synapses are cholinergic, fast and inhibitory and mediated by the α9α10 nicotinic cholinergic receptor (nAChR) coupled to the activation of calcium-activated potassium channels that hyperpolarize the hair cells. In this review we discuss the biophysical, functional and molecular data which demonstrate that at the synapses between MOC efferent fibers and cochlear hair cells, modulation of transmitter release as well as short term synaptic plasticity mechanisms, operating both at the presynaptic terminal and at the postsynaptic hair-cell, determine the efficacy of these synapses and shape the hair cell response pattern. PMID:25520631

  13. Effect of nitrous oxide on excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in hippocampal cultures.

    PubMed

    Mennerick, S; Jevtovic-Todorovic, V; Todorovic, S M; Shen, W; Olney, J W; Zorumski, C F

    1998-12-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O; laughing gas) has been a widely used anesthetic/analgesic since the 19th century, although its cellular mechanism of action is not understood. Here we characterize the effects of N2O on excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in microcultures of rat hippocampal neurons, a preparation in which anesthetic effects on monosynaptic communication can be examined in a setting free of polysynaptic network variables. Eighty percent N2O occludes peak NMDA receptor-mediated (NMDAR) excitatory autaptic currents (EACs) with no effect on the NMDAR EAC decay time course. N2O also mildly depresses AMPA receptor-mediated (AMPAR) EACs. We find that N2O inhibits both NMDA and non-NMDA receptor-mediated responses to exogenous agonist. The postsynaptic blockade of NMDA receptors exhibits slight apparent voltage dependence, whereas the blockade of AMPA receptors is not voltage dependent. Although the degree of ketamine and Mg2+ blockade of NMDA-induced responses is dependent on permeant ion concentration, the degree of N2O blockade is not. We also observe a slight and variable prolongation of GABAA receptor-mediated (GABAR) postsynaptic currents likely caused by previously reported effects of N2O on GABAA receptors. Despite the effects of N2O on both NMDA and non-NMDA ionotropic receptors, glial glutamate transporter currents and metabotropic glutamate receptor-mediated synaptic depression are not affected. Paired-pulse depression, the frequency of spontaneous miniature excitatory synaptic currents, and high-voltage-activated calcium currents are not affected by N2O. Our results suggest that the effects of N2O on synaptic transmission are confined to postsynaptic targets. PMID:9822732

  14. Developmental Exposure to Perchlorate Alters Synaptic Transmission in Hippocampus of the Adult Rat

    PubMed Central

    Gilbert, Mary E.; Sui, Li

    2008-01-01

    Background Perchlorate is an environmental contaminant that blocks iodine uptake into the thyroid gland and reduces thyroid hormones. This action of perchlorate raises significant concern over its effects on brain development. Objectives The purpose of this study was to evaluate neurologic function in rats after developmental exposure to perchlorate. Methods Pregnant rats were exposed to 0, 30, 300, or 1,000 ppm perchlorate in drinking water from gestational day 6 until weaning. Adult male offspring were evaluated on a series of behavioral tasks and neurophysiologic measures of synaptic function in the hippocampus. Results At the highest perchlorate dose, triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) were reduced in pups on postnatal day 21. T4 in dams was reduced relative to controls by 16%, 28%, and 60% in the 30-, 300-, and 1,000-ppm dose groups, respectively. Reductions in T4 were associated with increases in thyroid-stimulating hormone in the high-dose group. No changes were seen in serum T3. Perchlorate did not impair motor activity, spatial learning, or fear conditioning. However, significant reductions in baseline synaptic transmission were observed in hippocampal field potentials at all dose levels. Reductions in inhibitory function were evident at 300 and 1,000 ppm, and augmentations in long-term potentiation were observed in the population spike measure at the highest dose. Conclusions Dose-dependent deficits in hippocampal synaptic function were detectable with relatively minor perturbations of the thyroid axis, indicative of an irreversible impairment in synaptic transmission in response to developmental exposure to perchlorate. PMID:18560531

  15. Noradrenaline-mediated facilitation of inhibitory synaptic transmission in the dorsal horn of the rat spinal cord involves interlaminar communications.

    PubMed

    Seibt, Frederik; Schlichter, Rémy

    2015-11-01

    In the dorsal horn of the spinal cord (DH), noradrenaline (NA) is released by axons originating from the locus coeruleus and induces spinal analgesia, the mechanisms of which are poorly understood. Here, the effects of NA on synaptic transmission in the deep laminae (III-V) of the DH were characterized. It was shown that exogenously applied, as well as endogenously released, NA facilitated inhibitory [?-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic and glycinergic] synaptic transmission in laminae III-IV of the DH by activating ?1 -, ?2 - and ?-adrenoceptors (ARs). In contrast, NA had no effect on excitatory (glutamatergic) synaptic transmission. Physical interruption of communications between deep and more superficial laminae (by a mechanical transection between laminae IV and V) totally blocked the effects of ?2 -AR agonists and strongly reduced the effects of ?1 -AR agonists on inhibitory synaptic transmission in laminae III-IV without directly impairing synaptic release of GABA or glycine from neurons. Short-term pretreatment of intact spinal cord slices with the glial cell metabolism inhibitor fluorocitrate or pharmacological blockade of ionotropic glutamate and ATP receptors mimicked the consequences of a mechanical transection between laminae IV and V. Taken together, the current results indicate that the facilitation of inhibitory synaptic transmission in laminae III-IV of the DH by NA requires functional interlaminar connections between deep and more superficial laminae, and might strongly depend on glia to neuron interactions. These interlaminar connections and glia to neuron interactions could represent interesting targets for analgesic strategies. PMID:26370319

  16. Fast synaptic transmission mediated by P2X receptors in CA3 pyramidal cells of rat hippocampal slice cultures

    PubMed Central

    Mori, Masahiro; Heuss, Christian; Gähwiler, Beat H; Gerber, Urs

    2001-01-01

    A fast ATP-mediated synaptic current was identified in CA3 pyramidal cells in organotypic hippocampal slice cultures. In the presence of inhibitors for ionotropic glutamate and GABA receptors, extracellular stimulation in the pyramidal cell layer evoked fast synaptic currents that reversed near 0 mV, reflecting an increase in a non-selective cationic conductance. This response was mimicked by focal application of ATP. Antagonists of ionotropic P2X receptors reduced both synaptic and ATP-induced currents. Using a pharmacological approach, the source of synaptically released ATP was determined. Synaptic ATP responses were insensitive to presynaptic blockade of GABAergic transmission between interneurons and CA3 pyramidal cells with the ?-opioid receptor agonist D-Ala2,MePhe4,Met(O)5-ol-enkephalin (FK33-824), but were blocked by adenosine, which inhibits glutamate release from synaptic terminals in the hippocampus. However, selective inhibition of mossy fibre glutamatergic transmission with the metabotropic glutamate receptor group II agonist (2S,2?R,3?R)-2-(2?,3?-dicarboxycyclopropyl)glycine (DCG IV) did not affect the response. This result points to the associational fibres as the source of the ATP-mediated synaptic response. These results suggest that ATP, coreleased with glutamate, induces a synaptic response in CA3 pyramidal cells that is observed mainly under conditions of synchronous discharge from multiple presynaptic inputs. PMID:11507162

  17. Bidirectional regulation of synaptic transmission by BRAG1/IQSEC2 and its requirement in long-term depression.

    PubMed

    Brown, Joshua C; Petersen, Amber; Zhong, Ling; Himelright, Miranda L; Murphy, Jessica A; Walikonis, Randall S; Gerges, Nashaat Z

    2016-01-01

    Dysfunction of the proteins regulating synaptic function can cause synaptic plasticity imbalance that underlies neurological disorders such as intellectual disability. A study found that four distinct mutations within BRAG1, an Arf-GEF synaptic protein, each led to X-chromosome-linked intellectual disability (XLID). Although the physiological functions of BRAG1 are poorly understood, each of these mutations reduces BRAG1's Arf-GEF activity. Here we show that BRAG1 is required for the activity-dependent removal of AMPA receptors in rat hippocampal pyramidal neurons. Moreover, we show that BRAG1 bidirectionally regulates synaptic transmission. On one hand, BRAG1 is required for the maintenance of synaptic transmission. On the other hand, BRAG1 expression enhances synaptic transmission, independently of BRAG1 Arf-GEF activity or neuronal activity, but dependently on its C-terminus interactions. This study demonstrates a dual role of BRAG1 in synaptic function and highlights the functional relevance of reduced BRAG1 Arf-GEF activity as seen in the XLID-associated human mutations. PMID:27009485

  18. Hemichannel composition and electrical synaptic transmission: molecular diversity and its implications for electrical rectification

    PubMed Central

    Palacios-Prado, Nicolás; Huetteroth, Wolf; Pereda, Alberto E.

    2014-01-01

    Unapposed hemichannels (HCs) formed by hexamers of gap junction proteins are now known to be involved in various cellular processes under both physiological and pathological conditions. On the other hand, less is known regarding how differences in the molecular composition of HCs impact electrical synaptic transmission between neurons when they form intercellular heterotypic gap junctions (GJs). Here we review data indicating that molecular differences between apposed HCs at electrical synapses are generally associated with rectification of electrical transmission. Furthermore, this association has been observed at both innexin and connexin (Cx) based electrical synapses. We discuss the possible molecular mechanisms underlying electrical rectification, as well as the potential contribution of intracellular soluble factors to this phenomenon. We conclude that asymmetries in molecular composition and sensitivity to cellular factors of each contributing hemichannel can profoundly influence the transmission of electrical signals, endowing electrical synapses with more complex functional properties. PMID:25360082

  19. N-arachidonyl-glycine modulates synaptic transmission in superficial dorsal horn

    PubMed Central

    Jeong, Hyo-Jin; Vandenberg, Robert J; Vaughan, Christopher W

    2010-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE The arachidonyl-amino acid N-arachidonyl-glycine (NAGly) is an endogenous lipid, generated within the spinal cord and producing spinally mediated analgesia via non-cannabinoid mechanisms. In this study we examined the actions of NAGly on neurons within the superficial dorsal horn, a key site for the actions of many analgesic agents. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH Whole cell patch clamp recordings were made from lamina II neurons in rat spinal cord slices to examine the effect of NAGly on glycinergic and NMDA-mediated synaptic transmission. KEY RESULTS N-arachidonyl-glycine prolonged the decay of glycine, but not ?-alanine induced inward currents and decreased the amplitude of currents induced by both glycine and ?-alanine. NAGly and ALX-1393 (inhibitor of the glycine transporter, GLYT2), but not the GLYT1 inhibitor, ALX-5407, produced a strychnine-sensitive inward current. ALX-5407 and ALX-1393, but not NAGly prolonged the decay phase of glycine receptor-mediated miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs). NAGly prolonged the decay phase of evoked IPSCs, although to a lesser extent than ALX-5407 and ALX-1393. In the presence of ALX-1393, NAGly shortened the decay phase of evoked IPSCs. ALX-5407 increased and NAGly decreased the amplitude of evoked NMDA-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS Our results suggest that NAGly enhanced inhibitory glycinergic synaptic transmission within the superficial dorsal horn by blocking glycine uptake via GLYT2. In addition, NAGly decreased excitatory NMDA-mediated synaptic transmission. Together, these findings provide a cellular explanation for the spinal analgesic actions of NAGly. PMID:20860669

  20. On-site energy supply at synapses through monocarboxylate transporters maintains excitatory synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Nagase, Masashi; Takahashi, Yukari; Watabe, Ayako M; Kubo, Yoshihiro; Kato, Fusao

    2014-02-12

    ATP production through oxidative phosphorylation in the mitochondria is the most efficient way to provide energy to various energy-consuming activities of the neurons. These processes require a large amount of ATP molecules to be maintained. Of these, synaptic transmission is most energy consuming. Here we report that lactate transported through monocarboxylate transporters (MCTs) at excitatory synapses constitutively supports synaptic transmission, even under conditions in which a sufficient supply of glucose and intracellular ATP are present. We analyzed the effects of MCT inhibition on neuronal activities using whole-cell recordings in brain slices of rats in the nucleus of the solitary tract. MCT inhibitors (α-cyano-4-hydroxycinnamic acid (4-CIN), phloretin, and d-lactate) significantly decreased the amplitude of EPSCs without reducing release probability. Although 4-CIN significantly reduced currents mediated by heterologously expressed AMPA-Rs in oocytes (a novel finding in this study), the IC50 of the inhibitory effect on EPSC in brain slices was ∼3.8 times smaller than that on AMPA-R currents in oocytes. Removal of intracellular ATP significantly potentiated the inhibition of EPSC with 4-CIN in a manner that was counteracted by intracellular lactate addition. In addition, extracellular lactate rescued aglycemic suppression of EPSC, in a manner that was prevented by 4-CIN. Inhibition of MCTs also reduced NMDA-R-mediated EPSCs and, to a lesser extent, the IPSC. The reduction in EPSC amplitude by γ-d-glutamylglycine was enhanced by 4-CIN, suggesting also a decreased quantal content. We conclude that "on-site" astrocyte-neuron lactate transport to presynaptic and postsynaptic elements is necessary for the integrity of excitatory synaptic transmission. PMID:24523550

  1. TRPV1 receptors augment basal synaptic transmission in CA1 and CA3 pyramidal neurons in epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Saffarzadeh, F; Eslamizade, M J; Mousavi, S M M; Abraki, S B; Hadjighassem, M R; Gorji, A

    2016-02-01

    Temporal lobe epilepsy in human and animals is attributed to alterations in brain function especially hippocampus formation. Changes in synaptic activity might be causally related to the alterations during epileptogenesis. Transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) as one of the non-selective ion channels has been shown to be involved in synaptic transmission. However, the potential role of TRPV1 receptors in synaptic function in the epileptic brain needs to be elucidated. In the present study, we used quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR), western blotting, and immunohistochemistry to assess hippocampal TRPV1 mRNA expression, protein content, and distribution. Moreover, the effects of pharmacologic activation and inhibition of TRPV1 receptors on the slope of evoked field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) were analyzed in CA1 and CA3 pyramidal neurons, after 3months of pilocarpine-induced status epilepticus (SE). SE induced an upregulation of TRPV1 mRNA and protein content in the whole hippocampal extract, as well as its distribution in both CA1 and CA3 regions. Activation and inhibition of TRPV1 receptors (via capsaicin 1?M and capsazepine 10?M, respectively) did not influence basal synaptic transmission in CA1 and CA3 regions of control slices, however, capsaicin increased and capsazepine decreased synaptic transmission in both regions in tissues from epileptic animals. Taken together, these findings suggest that a higher expression of TRPV1 in the epileptic condition is accompanied by alterations in basal synaptic transmission. PMID:26621124

  2. Novel nootropic dipeptide Noopept increases inhibitory synaptic transmission in CA1 pyramidal cells.

    PubMed

    Kondratenko, Rodion V; Derevyagin, Vladimir I; Skrebitsky, Vladimir G

    2010-05-31

    Effects of newly synthesized nootropic and anxiolytic dipeptide Noopept on inhibitory synaptic transmission in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells were investigated using patch-clamp technique in whole-cell configuration. Bath application of Noopept (1 microM) significantly increased the frequency of spike-dependant spontaneous IPSCs whereas spike-independent mIPSCs remained unchanged. It was suggested that Noopept mediates its effect due to the activation of inhibitory interneurons terminating on CA1 pyramidal cells. Results of current clamp recording of inhibitory interneurons residing in stratum radiatum confirmed this suggestion. PMID:20382202

  3. Impaired Photoreceptor Protein Transport and Synaptic Transmission in a Mouse Model of Bardet-Biedl Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Abd-El-Barr, Muhammad M.; Sykoudis, Kristen; Andrabi, Sara; Eichers, Erica R.; Pennesi, Mark E.; Tan, Perciliz L.; Wilson, John H.; Katsanis, Nicholas; Lupski, James R.; Wu, Samuel M.

    2009-01-01

    Bardet-Biedl Syndrome (BBS) is an oligogenic syndrome whose manifestations include retinal degeneration, renal abnormalities, obesity and polydactylia. Evidence suggests that the main etiopathophysiology of this syndrome is impaired Intraflagellar Transport (IFT). In this study, we study the Bbs4-null mouse and investigate photoreceptor structure and function after loss of this gene. We find that Bbs4-null mice have defects in the transport of phototransduction proteins from the inner segments to the outer segments, before signs of cell death. Additionally, we show defects in synaptic transmission from the photoreceptors to secondary neurons of the visual system, demonstrating multiple functions for BBS4 in photoreceptors. PMID:18022666

  4. Impaired photoreceptor protein transport and synaptic transmission in a mouse model of Bardet-Biedl syndrome.

    PubMed

    Abd-El-Barr, Muhammad M; Sykoudis, Kristen; Andrabi, Sara; Eichers, Erica R; Pennesi, Mark E; Tan, Perciliz L; Wilson, John H; Katsanis, Nicholas; Lupski, James R; Wu, Samuel M

    2007-12-01

    Bardet-Biedl syndrome (BBS) is an oligogenic syndrome whose manifestations include retinal degeneration, renal abnormalities, obesity and polydactylia. Evidence suggests that the main etiopathophysiology of this syndrome is impaired intraflagellar transport (IFT). In this study, we study the Bbs4-null mouse and investigate photoreceptor structure and function after loss of this gene. We find that Bbs4-null mice have defects in the transport of phototransduction proteins from the inner segments to the outer segments, before signs of cell death. Additionally, we show defects in synaptic transmission from the photoreceptors to secondary neurons of the visual system, demonstrating multiple functions for BBS4 in photoreceptors. PMID:18022666

  5. Mice deficient for prion protein exhibit normal neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission in the hippocampus.

    PubMed Central

    Lledo, P M; Tremblay, P; DeArmond, S J; Prusiner, S B; Nicoll, R A

    1996-01-01

    We recorded in the CA1 region from hippocampal slices of prion protein (PrP) gene knockout mice to investigate whether the loss of the normal form of prion protein (PrPC) affects neuronal excitability as well as synaptic transmission in the central nervous system. No deficit in synaptic inhibition was found using field potential recordings because (i) responses induced by stimulation in stratum radiatum consisted of a single population spike in PrP gene knockout mice similar to that recorded from control mice and (ii) the plot of field excitatory postsynaptic potential slope versus the population spike amplitude showed no difference between the two groups of mice. Intracellular recordings also failed to detect any difference in cell excitability and the reversal potential for inhibitory postsynaptic potentials. Analysis of the kinetics of inhibitory postsynaptic current revealed no modification. Finally, we examined whether synaptic plasticity was altered and found no difference in long-term potentiation between control and PrP gene knockout mice. On the basis of our findings, we propose that the loss of the normal form of prion protein does not alter the physiology of the CA1 region of the hippocampus. PMID:8637886

  6. Tuning synaptic transmission in the hippocampus by stress: the CRH system

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yuncai; Andres, Adrienne L.; Frotscher, Michael; Baram, Tallie Z.

    2012-01-01

    To enhance survival, an organism needs to remember—and learn from—threatening or stressful events. This fact necessitates the presence of mechanisms by which stress can influence synaptic transmission in brain regions, such as hippocampus, that subserve learning and memory. A major focus of this series of monographs is on the role and actions of adrenal-derived hormones, corticosteroids, and of brain-derived neurotransmitters, on synaptic function in the stressed hippocampus. Here we focus on the contribution of hippocampus-intrinsic, stress-activated CRH-CRH receptor signaling to the function and structure of hippocampal synapses. Corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) is expressed in interneurons of adult hippocampus, and is released from axon terminals during stress. The peptide exerts time- and dose-dependent effects on learning and memory via modulation of synaptic function and plasticity. Whereas physiological levels of CRH, acting over seconds to minutes, augment memory processes, exposure to presumed severe-stress levels of the peptide results in spine retraction and loss of synapses over more protracted time-frames. Loss of dendritic spines (and hence of synapses) takes place through actin cytoskeleton collapse downstream of CRHR1 receptors that reside within excitatory synapses on spine heads. Chronic exposure to stress levels of CRH may promote dying-back (atrophy) of spine-carrying dendrites. Thus, the acute effects of CRH may contribute to stress-induced adaptive mechanisms, whereas chronic or excessive exposure to the peptide may promote learning problems and premature cognitive decline. PMID:22514519

  7. Mice Deficient for Prion Protein Exhibit Normal Neuronal Excitability and Synaptic Transmission in the Hippocampus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lledo, Pierre-Marie; Tremblay, Patrick; Dearmond, Stephen J.; Prusiner, Stanley B.; Nicoll, Roger A.

    1996-03-01

    We recorded in the CA1 region from hippocampal slices of prion protein (PrP) gene knockout mice to investigate whether the loss of the normal form of prion protein (PrPC) affects neuronal excitability as well as synaptic transmission in the central nervous system. No deficit in synaptic inhibition was found using field potential recordings because (i) responses induced by stimulation in stratum radiatum consisted of a single population spike in PrP gene knockout mice similar to that recorded from control mice and (ii) the plot of field excitatory postsynaptic potential slope versus the population spike amplitude showed no difference between the two groups of mice. Intracellular recordings also failed to detect any difference in cell excitability and the reversal potential for inhibitory postsynaptic potentials. Analysis of the kinetics of inhibitory postsynaptic current revealed no modification. Finally, we examined whether synaptic plasticity was altered and found no difference in long-term potentiation between control and PrP gene knockout mice. On the basis of our findings, we propose that the loss of the normal form of prion protein does not alter the physiology of the CA1 region of the hippocampus.

  8. Enhancement of synaptic transmission induced by BDNF in cultured cortical neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Jun; Gong, Hui; Zeng, Shaoqun; Li, Yanling; Luo, Qingming

    2005-03-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), like other neurotrophins, has long-term effects on neuronal survival and differentiation; furthermore, BDNF has been reported to exert an acute potentiation of synaptic activity and are critically involved in long-term potentiation (LTP). We found that BDNF rapidly induced potentiation of synaptic activity and an increase in the intracellular Ca2+ concentration in cultured cortical neurons. Within minutes of BDNF application to cultured cortical neurons, spontaneous firing rate was dramatically increased as were the frequency and amplitude of excitatory spontaneous postsynaptic currents (EPSCs). Fura-2 recordings showed that BDNF acutely elicited an increase in intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]c). This effect was partially dependent on [Ca2+]o; The BDNF-induced increase in [Ca2+]c can not be completely blocked by Ca2+-free solution. It was completely blocked by K252a and partially blocked by Cd2+ and TTX. The results demonstrate that BDNF can enhances synaptic transmission and that this effect is accompanied by a rise in [Ca2+]c that requires two route: the release of Ca2+ from intracellular calcium stores and influx of extracellular Ca2+ through voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels in cultured cortical neurons.

  9. Selective Activation of Microglia Facilitates Synaptic Strength

    PubMed Central

    Clark, Anna K.; Gruber-Schoffnegger, Doris; Drdla-Schutting, Ruth; Gerhold, Katharina J.; Malcangio, Marzia

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity is thought to be initiated by neurons only, with the prevailing view assigning glial cells mere specify supportive functions for synaptic transmission and plasticity. We now demonstrate that glial cells can control synaptic strength independent of neuronal activity. Here we show that selective activation of microglia in the rat is sufficient to rapidly facilitate synaptic strength between primary afferent C-fibers and lamina I neurons, the first synaptic relay in the nociceptive pathway. Specifically, the activation of the CX3CR1 receptor by fractalkine induces the release of interleukin-1? from microglia, which modulates NMDA signaling in postsynaptic neurons, leading to the release of an eicosanoid messenger, which ultimately enhances presynaptic neurotransmitter release. In contrast to the conventional view, this form of plasticity does not require enhanced neuronal activity to trigger the events leading to synaptic facilitation. Augmentation of synaptic strength in nociceptive pathways represents a cellular model of pain amplification. The present data thus suggest that, under chronic pain states, CX3CR1-mediated activation of microglia drives the facilitation of excitatory synaptic transmission in the dorsal horn, which contributes to pain hypersensitivity in chronic pain states. PMID:25788673

  10. Calmodulin enhances ribbon replenishment and shapes filtering of synaptic transmission by cone photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Parmelee, Caitlyn M.; Chen, Minghui; Cork, Karlene M.; Curto, Carina; Thoreson, Wallace B.

    2014-01-01

    At the first synapse in the vertebrate visual pathway, light-evoked changes in photoreceptor membrane potential alter the rate of glutamate release onto second-order retinal neurons. This process depends on the synaptic ribbon, a specialized structure found at various sensory synapses, to provide a supply of primed vesicles for release. Calcium (Ca2+) accelerates the replenishment of vesicles at cone ribbon synapses, but the mechanisms underlying this acceleration and its functional implications for vision are unknown. We studied vesicle replenishment using paired whole-cell recordings of cones and postsynaptic neurons in tiger salamander retinas and found that it involves two kinetic mechanisms, the faster of which was diminished by calmodulin (CaM) inhibitors. We developed an analytical model that can be applied to both conventional and ribbon synapses and showed that vesicle resupply is limited by a simple time constant, ? = 1/(D??s), where D is the vesicle diffusion coefficient, ? is the vesicle diameter, ? is the vesicle density, and s is the probability of vesicle attachment. The combination of electrophysiological measurements, modeling, and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy of single synaptic vesicles suggested that CaM speeds replenishment by enhancing vesicle attachment to the ribbon. Using electroretinogram and whole-cell recordings of light responses, we found that enhanced replenishment improves the ability of cone synapses to signal darkness after brief flashes of light and enhances the amplitude of responses to higher-frequency stimuli. By accelerating the resupply of vesicles to the ribbon, CaM extends the temporal range of synaptic transmission, allowing cones to transmit higher-frequency visual information to downstream neurons. Thus, the ability of the visual system to encode time-varying stimuli is shaped by the dynamics of vesicle replenishment at photoreceptor synaptic ribbons. PMID:25311636

  11. Calmodulin enhances ribbon replenishment and shapes filtering of synaptic transmission by cone photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Van Hook, Matthew J; Parmelee, Caitlyn M; Chen, Minghui; Cork, Karlene M; Curto, Carina; Thoreson, Wallace B

    2014-11-01

    At the first synapse in the vertebrate visual pathway, light-evoked changes in photoreceptor membrane potential alter the rate of glutamate release onto second-order retinal neurons. This process depends on the synaptic ribbon, a specialized structure found at various sensory synapses, to provide a supply of primed vesicles for release. Calcium (Ca(2+)) accelerates the replenishment of vesicles at cone ribbon synapses, but the mechanisms underlying this acceleration and its functional implications for vision are unknown. We studied vesicle replenishment using paired whole-cell recordings of cones and postsynaptic neurons in tiger salamander retinas and found that it involves two kinetic mechanisms, the faster of which was diminished by calmodulin (CaM) inhibitors. We developed an analytical model that can be applied to both conventional and ribbon synapses and showed that vesicle resupply is limited by a simple time constant, τ = 1/(Dρδs), where D is the vesicle diffusion coefficient, δ is the vesicle diameter, ρ is the vesicle density, and s is the probability of vesicle attachment. The combination of electrophysiological measurements, modeling, and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy of single synaptic vesicles suggested that CaM speeds replenishment by enhancing vesicle attachment to the ribbon. Using electroretinogram and whole-cell recordings of light responses, we found that enhanced replenishment improves the ability of cone synapses to signal darkness after brief flashes of light and enhances the amplitude of responses to higher-frequency stimuli. By accelerating the resupply of vesicles to the ribbon, CaM extends the temporal range of synaptic transmission, allowing cones to transmit higher-frequency visual information to downstream neurons. Thus, the ability of the visual system to encode time-varying stimuli is shaped by the dynamics of vesicle replenishment at photoreceptor synaptic ribbons. PMID:25311636

  12. Effects of 17beta-estradiol on glutamate synaptic transmission and neuronal excitability in the rat medial vestibular nuclei.

    PubMed

    Grassi, S; Frondaroli, A; Scarduzio, M; Dutia, M B; Dieni, C; Pettorossi, V E

    2010-02-17

    We investigated the effects of the neurosteroid 17beta-estradiol (E(2)) on the evoked and spontaneous activity of rat medial vestibular nucleus (MVN) neurons in brainstem slices. E(2) enhances the synaptic response to vestibular nerve stimulation in type B neurons and depresses the spontaneous discharge in both type A and B neurons. The amplitude of the field potential, as well as the excitatory post-synaptic potential (EPSP) and current (EPSC), in type B neurons, are enhanced by E(2). Both effects are long-term phenomena since they outlast the drug washout. The enhancement of synaptic response is mainly due to facilitation of glutamate release mediated by pre-synaptic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs), since the reduction of paired pulse ratio (PPR) and the increase of miniature EPSC frequency after E(2) are abolished under D-(-)-2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid (AP-5). E(2) also facilitates post-synaptic NMDARs, but it does not affect directly alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors (AMPARs) and group I-metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs-I). In contrast, the depression of the spontaneous discharge of type A and type B neurons appears to depend on E(2) modulation of intrinsic ion conductances, as the effect remains after blockade of glutamate, GABA and glycine receptors (GlyRs). The net effect of E(2) is to enhance the signal-to-noise ratio of the synaptic response in type B neurons, relative to resting activity of all MVN neurons. These findings provide evidence for a novel potential mechanism to modulate the responsiveness of vestibular neurons to afferent inputs, and so regulate vestibular function in vivo. PMID:19944747

  13. Cholinergic modulation of multivesicular release regulates striatal synaptic potency and integration

    PubMed Central

    Higley, Michael J.; Soler-Llavina, Gilberto J.; Sabatini, Bernardo L.

    2009-01-01

    The pleiotropic actions of neuromodulators on pre- and postsynaptic targets present challenges to disentangling the mechanisms underlying regulation of synaptic transmission. Within the striatum, acetylcholine modulates glutamate release via activation of muscarinic receptors (mAchRs), although the consequences for postsynaptic signaling are unclear. Using 2-photon microscopy and glutamate uncaging to examine individual synapses in the rat striatum, we find that glutamatergic afferents exhibit a high degree of multivesicular release (MVR) in the absence of postsynaptic receptor saturation. We show that mAchR activation decreases both the probability of release and the concentration of glutamate in the synaptic cleft. The corresponding decrease in synaptic potency reduces the duration of synaptic potentials and limits temporal summation of afferent inputs. These findings reveal a mechanism by which a combination of basal MVR and low receptor saturation allow the presynaptic actions of a neuromodulator to control the engagement of postsynaptic nonlinearities and regulate synaptic integration. PMID:19668198

  14. Effect of cortical spreading depression on synaptic transmission of rat hippocampal tissues.

    PubMed

    Wernsmann, Brigitta; Pape, Hans-Christian; Speckmann, Erwin-Josef; Gorji, Ali

    2006-03-01

    Cortical spreading depression (CSD) is believed to be a putative neuronal mechanism underlying migraine aura and subsequent pain. In vitro and ex vivo/in vitro brain slice techniques were used to investigate CSD effects on the field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSP) and tetanus-induced long-term potentiation (LTP) in combined rat hippocampus-cortex slices. Induction of CSD in combined hippocampus-cortex slices in which DC negative deflections did not propagate from neocortex to hippocampus significantly augmented fEPSP amplitude and LTP in the hippocampus. Propagation of CSD to the hippocampus resulted in a transient suppression followed by reinstatement of fEPSP with amplitude of pre-CSD levels. LTP was inhibited when DC potential shifts were recorded in the hippocampus. Furthermore, CSD was induced in anaesthetized rats and, thereafter, hippocampal tissues were examined in vitro. LTP was significantly enhanced in hippocampal slices obtained from ipsilateral site to the hemisphere in which CSD was evoked. The results indicate the disturbances of hippocampal synaptic transmission triggered by propagation of CSD. This perturbation of hippocampal synaptic transmission induced by CSD may relate to some symptoms occurring during migraine attacks, such as amnesia and hyperactivity. PMID:16553774

  15. Synchronous and asynchronous modes of synaptic transmission utilize different calcium sources

    PubMed Central

    Wen, Hua; Hubbard, Jeffrey M; Rakela, Benjamin; Linhoff, Michael W; Mandel, Gail; Brehm, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Asynchronous transmission plays a prominent role at certain synapses but lacks the mechanistic insights of its synchronous counterpart. The current view posits that triggering of asynchronous release during repetitive stimulation involves expansion of the same calcium domains underlying synchronous transmission. In this study, live imaging and paired patch clamp recording at the zebrafish neuromuscular synapse reveal contributions by spatially distinct calcium sources. Synchronous release is tied to calcium entry into synaptic boutons via P/Q type calcium channels, whereas asynchronous release is boosted by a propagating intracellular calcium source initiated at off-synaptic locations in the axon and axonal branch points. This secondary calcium source fully accounts for the persistence following termination of the stimulus and sensitivity to slow calcium buffers reported for asynchronous release. The neuromuscular junction and CNS neurons share these features, raising the possibility that secondary calcium sources are common among synapses with prominent asynchronous release. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.01206.001 PMID:24368731

  16. A genetic screen for synaptic transmission mutants mapping to the right arm of chromosome 3 in Drosophila.

    PubMed Central

    Babcock, Michael C; Stowers, R Steven; Leither, Jennifer; Goodman, Corey S; Pallanck, Leo J

    2003-01-01

    Neuronal function depends upon the proper formation of synaptic connections and rapid communication at these sites, primarily through the regulated exocytosis of chemical neurotransmitters. Recent biochemical and genomic studies have identified a large number of candidate molecules that may function in these processes. To complement these studies, we are pursuing a genetic approach to identify genes affecting synaptic transmission in the Drosophila visual system. Our screening approach involves a recently described genetic method allowing efficient production of mosaic flies whose eyes are entirely homozygous for a mutagenized chromosome arm. From a screen of 42,500 mutagenized flies, 32 mutations on chromosome 3R that confer synaptic transmission defects in the visual system were recovered. These mutations represent 14 complementation groups, of which at least 9 also appear to perform functional roles outside of the eye. Three of these complementation groups disrupt photoreceptor axonal projection, whereas the remaining complementation groups confer presynaptic defects in synaptic transmission without detectably altering photoreceptor structure. Mapping and complementation testing with candidate mutations revealed new alleles of the neuronal fate determinant svp and the synaptic vesicle trafficking component lap among the collection of mutants recovered in this screen. Given the tools available for investigation of synaptic function in Drosophila, these mutants represent a valuable resource for future analysis of synapse development and function. PMID:14504225

  17. The action of zinc on synaptic transmission and neuronal excitability in cultures of mouse hippocampus.

    PubMed Central

    Mayer, M L; Vyklicky, L

    1989-01-01

    1. The whole-cell configuration of the patch clamp method was used to record from hippocampal neurones in cell culture. Synaptic responses were evoked by loose patch stimulation of adjacent presynaptic neurones in low-density cultures. Agonists and antagonists were applied rapidly, using an array of flow pipes each of diameter 250 microns, positioned within 100 microns of the postsynaptic neurone. 2. Bath application of 50 microM-zinc produced prolonged periods of synaptic barrage and action potential discharge. Flow pipe application of 50 microM-zinc, in glycine-free solution with 1 mM-Mg2+, produced on average a 75% reduction of IPSP amplitude, but increased the average EPSP amplitude to 171% of control. However, after block of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors with bicuculline, zinc had no effect on EPSP amplitude, suggesting that potentiation recorded in control solutions reflects block of polysynaptic IPSPs. 3. Consistent with the block of IPSPs postsynaptic responses to flow pipe applications of GABA were blocked by zinc, with fast-on, fast-off kinetics. The equilibrium dissociation constant (Kd) for zinc block of GABA responses, estimated from fit of a single binding site adsorption isotherm, was 11 microM and sufficient to explain the degree of reduction of IPSPs by 50 microM-zinc. Zinc antagonism of responses to GABA was essentially independent of membrane potential over the range -60 to +60 mV. 4. With bicuculline methiodide and glycine added to a magnesium-free extracellular solution, to allow the study of synaptic responses mediated by N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) receptors, zinc reduced the amplitude of EPSPs to 50% of control, and decreased the decay time constant of the EPSP, suggesting that zinc blocks synaptic activation of NMDA receptors. 5. Under conditions where synaptic transmission was completely blocked with postsynaptic receptor antagonists (1-3 mM-kynurenic acid and 10-20 microM-bicuculline methiodide) 50 microM-zinc decreased the amplitude of the spike after-hyperpolarization (AHP), but did not produce large changes in action potential amplitude or half-width. Under these conditions 50 microM-zinc also decreased the current threshold required to trigger action potential discharge, and blocked accommodation so that repetitive firing replaced single action potential responses to prolonged current pulses. PMID:2561789

  18. Analysis of synaptic efficacy in spinal motoneurones from 'quantum' aspects.

    PubMed

    Kuno, M; Miyahara, J T

    1969-04-01

    1. Synaptic responses of triceps surae motoneurones of the cat following stimulation of single afferent fibres were examined by intracellular recording techniques.2. The mean quantum content (m) of monosynaptic excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) was independent of the type of motoneurone recorded and of the afferent fibre stimulated. There was no significant difference in m value between homonymous and heteronymous synapses.3. A positive correlation was found between the amplitude of unit EPSPs and the input resistance of motoneurones. The difference in the amplitude of unit EPSPs appears to be responsible for the higher synaptic efficacy in slow-conducting motoneurones than in fast-conducting motoneurones.4. There was no significant difference in the time course of monosynaptic EPSPs evoked by impulses from homonymous and heteronymous afferent fibres.5. The ratio of monosynaptic connexions from a given afferent fibre was significantly greater on to homonymous than to heteronymous motoneurones. It is concluded that the difference in efficacy between homonymous and heteronymous synaptic transmission is due to the difference in the number of afferent fibres converging upon these motoneurones. PMID:5780555

  19. GSG1L suppresses AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission and uniquely modulates AMPA receptor kinetics in hippocampal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Xinglong; Mao, Xia; Lussier, Marc P.; Hutchison, Mary Anne; Zhou, Liang; Hamra, F. Kent; Roche, Katherine W.; Lu, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Regulation of AMPA receptor (AMPAR)-mediated synaptic transmission is a key mechanism for synaptic plasticity. In the brain, AMPARs assemble with a number of auxiliary subunits, including TARPs, CNIHs and CKAMP44, which are important for AMPAR forward trafficking to synapses. Here we report that the membrane protein GSG1L negatively regulates AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission. Overexpression of GSG1L strongly suppresses, and GSG1L knockout (KO) enhances, AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission. GSG1L-dependent regulation of AMPAR synaptic transmission relies on the first extracellular loop domain and its carboxyl-terminus. GSG1L also speeds up AMPAR deactivation and desensitization in hippocampal CA1 neurons, in contrast to the effects of TARPs and CNIHs. Furthermore, GSG1L association with AMPARs inhibits CNIH2-induced slowing of the receptors in heterologous cells. Finally, GSG1L KO rats have deficits in LTP and show behavioural abnormalities in object recognition tests. These data demonstrate that GSG1L represents a new class of auxiliary subunit with distinct functional properties for AMPARs. PMID:26932439

  20. Altered inhibitory synaptic transmission in superficial dorsal horn neurones in spastic and oscillator mice

    PubMed Central

    Graham, B A; Schofield, P R; Sah, P; Callister, R J

    2003-01-01

    The spastic (spa) and oscillator (ot) mouse have naturally occurring mutations in the inhibitory glycine receptor (GlyR) and exhibit severe motor disturbances when exposed to unexpected sensory stimuli. We examined the effects of the spa and ot mutations on GlyR- and GABAAR-mediated synaptic transmission in the superficial dorsal horn (SFDH), a spinal cord region where inhibition is important for nociceptive processing. Spontaneous mIPSCs were recorded from visually identified neurones in parasagittal spinal cord slices. Neurones received exclusively GABAAR-mediated mIPSCs, exclusively GlyR-mediated mIPSCs or both types of mIPSCs. In control mice (wild-type and spa/+) over 40 % of neurones received both types of mIPSCs, over 30 % received solely GABAAR-mediated mIPSCs and the remainder received solely GlyR-mediated mIPSCs. In spa/spa animals, 97 % of the neurones received exclusively GABAAergic or both types of mIPSCs. In ot/ot animals, over 80 % of the neurones received exclusively GABAAR-mediated mIPSCs. GlyR-mediated mIPSC amplitude and charge were reduced in spa/spa and ot/ot animals. GABAAR-mediated mIPSC amplitude and charge were elevated in spa/spa but unaltered in ot/ot animals. GlyR- and GABAAR-mediated mIPSC decay times were similar for all genotypes, consistent with the mutations altering receptor numbers but not kinetics. These findings suggest the spastic and oscillator mutations, traditionally considered motor disturbances, also disrupt inhibition in a sensory region associated with nociceptive transmission. Furthermore, the spastic mutation results in a compensatory increase in GABAAergic transmission in SFDH neurones, a form of inhibitory synaptic plasticity absent in the oscillator mouse. PMID:12837931

  1. The projection and synaptic organisation of NTS afferent connections with presympathetic neurons, GABA and nNOS neurons in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus

    PubMed Central

    Affleck, V.S.; Coote, J.H.; Pyner, S.

    2012-01-01

    Elevated sympathetic nerve activity, strongly associated with cardiovascular disease, is partly generated from the presympathetic neurons of the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN). The PVN-presympathetic neurons regulating cardiac and vasomotor sympathetic activity receive information about cardiovascular status from receptors in the heart and circulation. These receptors signal changes via afferent neurons terminating in the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS), some of which may result in excitation or inhibition of PVN-presympathetic neurons. Understanding the anatomy and neurochemistry of NTS afferent connections within the PVN could provide important clues to the impairment in homeostasis cardiovascular control associated with disease. Transynaptic labelling has shown the presence of neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS)-containing neurons and GABA interneurons that terminate on presympathetic PVN neurons any of which may be the target for NTS afferents. So far NTS connections to these diverse neuronal pools have not been demonstrated and were investigated in this study. Anterograde (biotin dextran amine – BDA) labelling of the ascending projection from the NTS and retrograde (fluorogold – FG or cholera toxin B subunit – CTB) labelling of PVN presympathetic neurons combined with immunohistochemistry for GABA and nNOS was used to identify the terminal neuronal targets of the ascending projection from the NTS. It was shown that NTS afferent terminals are apposed to either PVN-GABA interneurons or to nitric oxide producing neurons or even directly to presympathetic neurons. Furthermore, there was evidence that some NTS axons were positive for vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (vGLUT2). The data provide an anatomical basis for the different functions of cardiovascular receptors that mediate their actions via the NTS–PVN pathways. PMID:22698695

  2. A Computational Model to Investigate Astrocytic Glutamate Uptake Influence on Synaptic Transmission and Neuronal Spiking

    PubMed Central

    Allam, Sushmita L.; Ghaderi, Viviane S.; Bouteiller, Jean-Marie C.; Legendre, Arnaud; Ambert, Nicolas; Greget, Renaud; Bischoff, Serge; Baudry, Michel; Berger, Theodore W.

    2012-01-01

    Over the past decades, our view of astrocytes has switched from passive support cells to active processing elements in the brain. The current view is that astrocytes shape neuronal communication and also play an important role in many neurodegenerative diseases. Despite the growing awareness of the importance of astrocytes, the exact mechanisms underlying neuron-astrocyte communication and the physiological consequences of astrocytic-neuronal interactions remain largely unclear. In this work, we define a modeling framework that will permit to address unanswered questions regarding the role of astrocytes. Our computational model of a detailed glutamatergic synapse facilitates the analysis of neural system responses to various stimuli and conditions that are otherwise difficult to obtain experimentally, in particular the readouts at the sub-cellular level. In this paper, we extend a detailed glutamatergic synaptic model, to include astrocytic glutamate transporters. We demonstrate how these glial transporters, responsible for the majority of glutamate uptake, modulate synaptic transmission mediated by ionotropic AMPA and NMDA receptors at glutamatergic synapses. Furthermore, we investigate how these local signaling effects at the synaptic level are translated into varying spatio-temporal patterns of neuron firing. Paired pulse stimulation results reveal that the effect of astrocytic glutamate uptake is more apparent when the input inter-spike interval is sufficiently long to allow the receptors to recover from desensitization. These results suggest an important functional role of astrocytes in spike timing dependent processes and demand further investigation of the molecular basis of certain neurological diseases specifically related to alterations in astrocytic glutamate uptake, such as epilepsy. PMID:23060782

  3. Chronic activation of CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the hippocampus increases excitatory synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jimok; Li, Yong

    2015-01-01

    The roles of CB1 cannabinoid receptors in regulating neuronal activity have been extensively characterized. Although early studies show that CB1 receptors are present in the nervous system and CB2 cannabinoid receptors are in the immune system, recent evidence indicates that CB2 receptors are also expressed in the brain. Activation or blockade of CB2 receptors in vivo induces neuropsychiatric effects, but the cellular mechanisms of CB2 receptor function are unclear. The aim of this study is to determine how activation of CB2 receptors present in the hippocampus regulates synaptic function. Here, we show that when organotypic cultures of rodent hippocampal slices were treated with a CB2 receptor agonist (JWH133 or GP1a) for 7–10 days, quantal glutamate release became more frequent and spine density was increased via extracellular signal-regulated kinases. Chronic intraperitoneal injection of JWH133 into mice also increased excitatory synaptic transmission. These effects were blocked by a CB2 receptor antagonist (SR144528) or absent from hippocampal slices of CB2 receptor knock-out mice. This study reveals a novel cellular function of CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the hippocampus and provides insights into how cannabinoid receptor subtypes diversify the roles of cannabinoids in the brain. PMID:25504573

  4. Melatonin receptor activation increases glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the rat medial lateral habenula.

    PubMed

    Evely, Katherine M; Hudson, Randall L; Dubocovich, Margarita L; Haj-Dahmane, Samir

    2016-05-01

    Melatonin (MLT) is secreted from the pineal gland and mediates its physiological effects through activation of two G protein-coupled receptors, MT1 and MT2 . These receptors are expressed in several brain areas, including the habenular complex, a pair of nuclei that relay information from forebrain to midbrain and modulate a plethora of behaviors, including sleep, mood, and pain. However, so far, the precise mechanisms by which MLT control the function of habenula neurons remain unknown. Using whole cell recordings from male rat brain slices, we examined the effects of MLT on the excitability of medial lateral habenula (MLHb) neurons. We found that MLT had no significant effects on the intrinsic excitability of MLHb neurons, but profoundly increased the amplitude of glutamate-mediated evoked excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSC). The increase in strength of glutamate synapses onto MLHb neurons was mediated by an increase in glutamate release. The MLT-induced increase in glutamatergic synaptic transmission was blocked by the competitive MT1 /MT2 receptor antagonist luzindole (LUZ). These results unravel a potential cellular mechanism by which MLT receptor activation enhances the excitability of MLHb neurons. The MLT-mediated control of glutamatergic inputs to the MLHb may play a key role in the modulation of various behaviors controlled by the habenular complex. Synapse, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Synapse 70:181-186, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26799638

  5. Purinergic P2X Receptors Presynaptically Increase Glutamatergic Synaptic Transmission in Dorsolateral Periaqueductal Gray

    PubMed Central

    Xing, Jihong; Lu, Jian; Li, Jianhua

    2008-01-01

    Purinergic P2X receptors have been reported to present in regions of the midbrain periaqueductal gray (PAG). The purpose of this study was to determine the role of presynaptic P2X receptors in modulating excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs to the dorsolateral PAG (dl-PAG), which has abundant neuronal connections. First, whole cell voltage-clamp recording was performed to obtain excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs and IPSCs) of the dl-PAG neurons. Our data show that ?, ?-methylene ATP (a P2X receptors agonist), in the concentration of 50 µM, significantly increased the frequency of miniature EPSCs without altering the amplitude of miniature EPSCs in eight tested neurons. The effects were attenuated by PPADS, an antagonist to P2X receptors. Furthermore, ?, ?-methylene ATP increased the amplitude of evoked EPSCs, and decreased the paired-pulse ratio of eEPSCs in ten neurons. In contrast, activation of P2X had no distinct effect on IPSCs. In addition, immunofluoresent methods demonstrate that P2X labeling was co-localized with a presynaptic marker, synaptophysin, in the dl-PAG. The results of the current study provide the first evidence indicating that P2X receptors facilitate glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the dl-PAG via presynaptic mechanisms. PMID:18395189

  6. Modulation of excitatory synaptic transmission in rat hippocampal CA3 neurons by triphenyltin, an environmental pollutant.

    PubMed

    Wakita, Masahito; Oyama, Yasuo; Takase, Yuko; Akaike, Norio

    2015-02-01

    Triphenyltin (TPT) is an organometallic compound that poses a known environmental hazard to some fish and mollusks, as well as mammals. However, its neurotoxic mechanisms in the mammalian brain are still unclear. Thus, we have investigated mechanisms through which TPT modulates glutamatergic synaptic transmission, including spontaneous, miniature, and evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs, mEPSCs, and eEPSCs respectively), in a rat hippocampal CA3 'synaptic-bouton' preparation. TPT, at environmentally relevant concentrations (30 nM to 1 μM), significantly increased the frequency of sEPSCs and mEPSCs in a concentration-dependent manner, without affecting the currents' amplitudes. The facilitatory effects of TPT on mEPSC frequency were seen even in a Ca(2+)-free external solution containing tetrodotoxin. These effects were further prolonged by adding caffeine, which releases Ca(2+) from intracellular Ca(2+) storage sites. In glutamatergic eEPSCs evoked by paired-pulse stimuli, TPT at concentrations greater than or equal to 100 nM markedly increased the current amplitude by the first pulse and decreased failure rate and pair-pulse ratio. On the other hand, both voltage-dependent Na(+) and Ca(2+) channels were unaffected by submicromolar concentrations of TPT. Overall, these results suggest that TPT, at environmentally relevant concentrations, affects presynaptic transmitter release machinery by directly modulating Ca(2+) storage. Further, findings of this study imply that excitotoxic mechanisms may underlie TPT-induced neuronal damage. PMID:25462303

  7. [Major mechanisms involved in the synaptic transmission of the neuromuscular apparatus].

    PubMed

    Rigoard, S; Wager, M; Buffenoir, K; Bauche, S; Giot, J-P; Maixent, J-M; Rigoard, P

    2009-03-01

    Neuromuscular transmission results from a double signal transduction from electric impulses to chemical messengers, taking place at a highly differentiated region, the neuromuscular junction (NMJ). A nerve cell responds to a specific stimulus by modifications of its plasmic membrane properties, generating an action potential (AP). This electric signal is transmitted along the axon to the NMJ, where it induces the voltage-gated calcium channels to open. Intracellular calcium entry leads to acetylcholine release in the synaptic space at the active zones but all scientists do not consider it the major release factor. Acetylcholine binding with its receptor at the muscle membrane generates an endplate potential when the induced depolarization is greater than the sodium voltage channel opening threshold. Muscle AP causes a muscle contraction involving the three phases. This paper will successively review the electrophysiological and molecular mechanisms involved at the pre-, inter- and postsynaptic levels. The last part of the article will discuss electromechanical considerations directly affecting the mechanical properties of the muscle fiber, most particularly the factors influencing the predetermined involvement of motor units, motor neuron electrical properties determining responses to synaptic inputs and finally the impact of recruited motor neurons and their electrical impulse rates on muscle contraction strength and velocity. PMID:19230941

  8. Modulation by adenosine of Adelta and C primary-afferent glutamatergic transmission in adult rat substantia gelatinosa neurons.

    PubMed

    Lao, L-J; Kawasaki, Y; Yang, K; Fujita, T; Kumamoto, E

    2004-01-01

    The present study examined the actions of adenosine on monosynaptic Adelta and C primary-afferent excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) recorded from substantia gelatinosa (SG) neurons of an adult rat spinal cord slice. In 67% of the neurons examined, adenosine reversibly decreased the amplitude of the Adelta-fiber EPSC, while in 13% of the neurons the amplitude was reduced or unaffected, which was followed by its increase persisting for several minutes after adenosine washout. The remaining neurons did not exhibit a change in the amplitude. The reduction in Adelta-fiber EPSC amplitude by adenosine was dose-dependent with an effective concentration for half-inhibition (EC50) value of 217 microM. When examined by using a paired-pulse stimulus, a ratio of the second to first Adelta-fiber EPSC amplitude under the reduction was larger than that of EPSC amplitude in the control, suggesting a presynaptic action of adenosine. In 69% of the neurons tested, the C-fiber EPSC was reversibly decreased in amplitude by adenosine (100 microM) by an extent comparable to that of Adelta-fiber EPSC; the remaining neurons were without adenosine actions. Similar inhibitory actions of adenosine were also seen in neurons where both Adelta-fiber and C-fiber EPSCs were elicited. Similar reduction in the Adelta-fiber or C-fiber EPSC amplitude was induced by an A1 adenosine-receptor agonist, N6-cyclopentyladenosine (1 microM), and the adenosine-induced reduction was not observed in the presence of an A1 antagonist, 8-cyclopentyl-1,3-dipropylxanthine (1 microM). An A2a agonist, CGS 21680 (1 microM), did not significantly affect the Adelta-fiber EPSC amplitude. It is concluded that adenosine presynaptically inhibits monosynaptic Adelta-fiber and C-fiber transmission by a similar extent through the activation of the A1 receptor in many but not all SG neurons; this could contribute to at least a part of antinociception by intrathecally administered adenosine analogues and probably by endogenous adenosine. PMID:15051161

  9. Serotonin is a facilitatory neuromodulator of synaptic transmission and "reinforces" long-term potentiation induction in the vertical lobe of Octopus vulgaris.

    PubMed

    Shomrat, T; Feinstein, N; Klein, M; Hochner, B

    2010-08-11

    The modern cephalopod mollusks (coleoids) are considered the most behaviorally advanced invertebrate, yet little is known about the neurophysiological basis of their behaviors. Previous work suggested that the vertical lobe (VL) of cephalopods is a crucial site for the learning and memory components of these behaviors. We are therefore studying the neurophysiology of the VL in Octopus vulgaris and have discovered a robust activity-dependent long-term potentiation (LTP) of the synaptic input to the VL. Moreover, we have shown that the VL and its LTP are involved in behavioral long-term memory acquisition. To advance our understanding of the VL as a learning neural network we explore the possible involvement of neuromodulation in VL function. Here we examine whether the well studied serotonergic modulation in simple models of learning in gastropods mollusks is conserved in the octopus VL. We demonstrate histochemically that the VL is innervated by afferent terminals containing 5-HT immunoreactivity (5-HT-IR). Physiologically, 5-HT has a robust facilitatory effect on synaptic transmission and activity-dependent LTP induction. These results suggest that serotonergic neuromodulation is a part of a reinforcing/reward signaling system conserved in both simple and complex learning systems of mollusks. However, there are notable functional differences. First, the effective concentration of 5-HT in the VL is rather high (100 microM); secondly, only neuropilar regions but not cell bodies in the VL are innervated by terminals containing 5-HT-IR. Thirdly, repetitive or long exposures to 5-HT do not lead to a clear long-term facilitation. We propose that in the octopus VL, while the basic facilitatory properties of molluscan 5-HT system are conserved, the system has adapted to convey signals from other brain areas to reinforce the activity-dependent associations at specific sites in the large connections matrix in the VL. PMID:20433903

  10. The neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) alters hippocampal excitatory synaptic transmission by modulation of the GABAergic system

    PubMed Central

    Huang, YuYing; Chen, JunFang; Chen, Ying; Zhuang, YingHan; Sun, Mu; Behnisch, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    The neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) induces Parkinson’s disease-like symptoms following administration to mice, monkeys, and humans. A common view is that MPTP is metabolized to 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium ion (MPP+) to induce its neurodegenerative effects on dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra (SN). Moreover, the hippocampus contains dopaminergic fibers, which are projecting from the ventral tegmental area, SN and pars compacta and contain the whole machinery required for dopamine synthesis making them sensitive to MPTP and MPP+. Here, we present data showing that acute bath-application of MPP+ elicited a dose-dependent facilitation followed by a depression of synaptic transmission of hippocampal Schaffer collaterals-CA1 synapses in mice. The effects of MPP+ were not mediated by D1/D5- and D2-like receptor activation. Inhibition of the dopamine transporters did not prevent but increased the depression of excitatory post-synaptic field potentials. In the search for a possible mechanism, we observed that MPP+ reduced the appearance of polyspikes in population spikes recorded in str. pyramidale and increased the frequency of miniature inhibitory post-synaptic currents. The acute effect of MPP+ on synaptic transmission was attenuated by co-application of a GABAA receptor antagonist. Taking these data together, we suggest that MPP+ affects hippocampal synaptic transmission by enhancing some aspects of the hippocampal GABAergic system. PMID:26300734

  11. A transducible nuclear/nucleolar protein, mLLP, regulates neuronal morphogenesis and synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Nam-Kyung; Kim, Hyoung F.; Shim, Jaehoon; Kim, Somi; Kim, Dae Won; Kwak, Chuljung; Sim, Su-Eon; Choi, Jun-Hyeok; Ahn, Seohee; Yoo, Juyoun; Choi, Sun-Lim; Jang, Deok-Jin; Lim, Chae-Seok; Lee, Yong-Seok; Kang, Chulhun; Choi, Soo Young; Kaang, Bong-Kiun

    2016-01-01

    Cell-permeable proteins are emerging as unconventional regulators of signal transduction and providing a potential for therapeutic applications. However, only a few of them are identified and studied in detail. We identify a novel cell-permeable protein, mouse LLP homolog (mLLP), and uncover its roles in regulating neural development. We found that mLLP is strongly expressed in developing nervous system and that mLLP knockdown or overexpression during maturation of cultured neurons affected the neuronal growth and synaptic transmission. Interestingly, extracellular addition of mLLP protein enhanced dendritic arborization, demonstrating the non-cell-autonomous effect of mLLP. Moreover, mLLP interacts with CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) as well as transcriptional machineries and modulates gene expression involved in neuronal growth. Together, these results illustrate the characteristics and roles of previously unknown cell-permeable protein mLLP in modulating neural development. PMID:26961175

  12. A transducible nuclear/nucleolar protein, mLLP, regulates neuronal morphogenesis and synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Yu, Nam-Kyung; Kim, Hyoung F; Shim, Jaehoon; Kim, Somi; Kim, Dae Won; Kwak, Chuljung; Sim, Su-Eon; Choi, Jun-Hyeok; Ahn, Seohee; Yoo, Juyoun; Choi, Sun-Lim; Jang, Deok-Jin; Lim, Chae-Seok; Lee, Yong-Seok; Kang, Chulhun; Choi, Soo Young; Kaang, Bong-Kiun

    2016-01-01

    Cell-permeable proteins are emerging as unconventional regulators of signal transduction and providing a potential for therapeutic applications. However, only a few of them are identified and studied in detail. We identify a novel cell-permeable protein, mouse LLP homolog (mLLP), and uncover its roles in regulating neural development. We found that mLLP is strongly expressed in developing nervous system and that mLLP knockdown or overexpression during maturation of cultured neurons affected the neuronal growth and synaptic transmission. Interestingly, extracellular addition of mLLP protein enhanced dendritic arborization, demonstrating the non-cell-autonomous effect of mLLP. Moreover, mLLP interacts with CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) as well as transcriptional machineries and modulates gene expression involved in neuronal growth. Together, these results illustrate the characteristics and roles of previously unknown cell-permeable protein mLLP in modulating neural development. PMID:26961175

  13. Mitochondrial reactive oxygen species regulate the strength of inhibitory GABA-mediated synaptic transmission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Accardi, Michael V.; Daniels, Bryan A.; Brown, Patricia M. G. E.; Fritschy, Jean-Marc; Tyagarajan, Shiva K.; Bowie, Derek

    2014-01-01

    Neuronal communication imposes a heavy metabolic burden in maintaining ionic gradients essential for action potential firing and synaptic signalling. Although cellular metabolism is known to regulate excitatory neurotransmission, it is still unclear whether the brain’s energy supply affects inhibitory signalling. Here we show that mitochondrial-derived reactive oxygen species (mROS) regulate the strength of postsynaptic GABAA receptors at inhibitory synapses of cerebellar stellate cells. Inhibition is strengthened through a mechanism that selectively recruits ?3-containing GABAA receptors into synapses with no discernible effect on resident ?1-containing receptors. Since mROS promotes the emergence of postsynaptic events with unique kinetic properties, we conclude that newly recruited ?3-containing GABAA receptors are activated by neurotransmitter released onto discrete postsynaptic sites. Although traditionally associated with oxidative stress in neurodegenerative disease, our data identify mROS as a putative homeostatic signalling molecule coupling cellular metabolism to the strength of inhibitory transmission.

  14. Methamphetamine modulates glutamatergic synaptic transmission in rat primary cultured hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Shuzhuo; Jin, Yuelei; Liu, Xiaoyan; Yang, Lujia; Ge, Zhi juan; Wang, Hui; Li, Jin; Zheng, Jianquan

    2014-09-25

    Methamphetamine (METH) is a psychostimulant drug. Abuse of METH produces long-term behavioral changes including behavioral, sensitization, tolerance, and dependence. It induces neurotoxic effects in several areas of the brain via enhancing dopamine (DA) level abnormally, which may cause a secondary release of glutamate (GLU). However, repeated administration of METH still increases release of GLU even when dopamine content in tissue is significantly depleted. It implies that some other mechanisms are likely to involve in METH-induced GLU release. The goal of this study was to observe METH affected glutamatergic synaptic transmission in rat primary cultured hippocampal neurons and to explore the mechanism of METH modulated GLU release. Using whole-cell patch-clamp recordings, we found that METH (0.1-50.0?M) increased the frequency of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) and miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs). However, METH decreased the frequency of sEPSCs and mEPSCs at high concentration of 100?M. The postsynaptic NMDA receptor currents and P/Q-type calcium channel were not affected by the use of METH (10,100?M). METH did not present visible effect on N-type Ca(2+) channel current at the concentration lower than 50.0?M, but it was inhibited by use of METH at a 100?M. The effect of METH on glutamatergic synaptic transmission was not revered by pretreated with DA receptor antagonist SCH23390. These results suggest that METH directly modulated presynaptic GLU release at a different concentration, while dopaminergic system was not involved in METH modulated release of GLU in rat primary cultured hippocampal neurons. PMID:25091639

  15. Vasopressin facilitates glycinergic and GABAergic synaptic transmission in developing hypoglossal motoneurons.

    PubMed

    Reymond-Marron, I; Raggenbass, M; Zaninetti, M

    2005-03-01

    The hypoglossal nucleus of young rats contains vasopressin binding sites and vasopressin can directly excite hypoglossal motoneurons. In addition, indirect evidence suggests that vasopressin can enhance the synaptic input to motoneurons. We have characterized this latter effect by using brainstem slices and whole-cell recordings. We found that, in the presence of blockers of fast glutamatergic transmission, vasopressin strongly facilitated inhibitory synaptic activity. On average, vasopressin caused a six-fold increase in the frequency and a 1.5-fold increase in the amplitude of GABAergic postsynaptic currents. The effect of vasopressin on glycinergic postsynaptic currents was similar in magnitude. Vasopressin did not affect the frequency of GABAergic or glycinergic miniature postsynaptic currents, indicating that the peptide-induced facilitation of inhibitory transmission was mediated by receptors located on the somatodendritic region rather than on axon terminals of presynaptic neurons. The pharmacological profile of these receptors was determined by using d[Cha4]AVP and dVDAVP, selective agonists of V1b and V2 vasopressin receptors, respectively, and Phaa-D-Tyr-(Et)-Phe-Gln-Pro-Arg-Arg-NH2, a selective antagonist of V1a vasopressin receptors. The two agonists had no effect on the frequency of inhibitory postsynaptic currents. By contrast, the antagonist suppressed the vasopressin-induced facilitation of these currents, indicating that the receptors involved were exclusively of the V1a type. Thus, vasopressin exerts a dual action on hypoglossal motoneurons: a direct excitatory action and an indirect action mediated by GABAergic and glycinergic synapses. By virtue of this dual effect, vasopressin could alter the input-output properties of these motoneurons. Alternatively, it could play a role in generating or modulating specific motor patterns. PMID:15845087

  16. Presynaptic inhibitory action of opioids on synaptic transmission in the rat periaqueductal grey in vitro.

    PubMed Central

    Vaughan, C W; Christie, M J

    1997-01-01

    1. The actions of opioids on synaptic transmission in rat periaqueductal grey (PAG) neurones were examined using whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in brain slices. 2. Methionine enkephalin (ME; 10 microM) inhibited evoked GABAergic inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) by 57%, non-NMDA excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) by 60%, and NMDA EPSCs by 43% in PAG neurones. This inhibition was associated with an increase in paired-pulse facilitation, was mimicked by the mu-agonist DAMGO (1-3 microM) and abolished by naloxone (1 microM). Neither the kappa-agonist U69593 (1-3 microM), nor the delta-agonist DPDPE (3-10 microM) had any specific actions on evoked PSCs. 3. ME decreased the frequency of spontaneous miniature, action potential-independent postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs by 65%, mEPSCs by 54%) in all PAG neurones, but had no effect on their amplitude distributions. The reduction in mIPSC frequency persisted in nominally Ca(2+)-free, high-Mg2+ (10 mM) solutions, which also contained Cd2+ (100 microM), or Ba2+ (10 mM). Opioid inhibition of mIPSC frequency is unlikely to be mediated by presynaptic Ca2+ or K+ conductances which are sensitive to extracellular Cd2+ or Ba2+. 4. In a subpopulation of PAG neurones, ME increased a Ba(2+)-sensitive K+ conductance at potentials below -97 mV. Opioids inhibited both GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic transmission in all PAG neurones, independent of any postsynaptic opioid sensitivity. 5. These observations are consistent with, but only partially support, the opioid disinhibition model of PAG-induced analgesia. mu-Opioids also have the potential to modulate the behavioural and autonomic functions of the PAG via modulation of both inhibitory and excitatory presynaptic mechanisms, as well as postsynaptic mechanisms. PMID:9032693

  17. Modulation of GABA-mediated synaptic transmission by endogenous zinc in the immature rat hippocampus in vitro.

    PubMed Central

    Xie, X; Hider, R C; Smart, T G

    1994-01-01

    1. Intracellular recordings from postnatal 2- to 12-day-old (P2-12) rat hippocampal CA3 pyramidal neurones exhibited spontaneous synaptic potentials mediated by GABAA receptors. These potentials can be separated on the basis of amplitude into two classes which are referred to as small and large. 2. The large depolarizing potentials were reversibly inhibited by the Zn2+ chelator 1,2-diethyl-3-hydroxypyridin-4-one (CP94). The small inhibitory postsynaptic potentials. (IPSPs) were apparently unaffected. 3. Stimulation of the mossy fibre pathway evoked composite excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) and IPSPs. Threshold stimulus-evoked synaptic potentials were mediated by GABAA receptors and were reversibly blocked by CP94. The responses evoked by suprathreshold stimulation and persisting in the presence of bicuculline or CP94 were partially inhibited by 2-amino-5-phosphonopropionic acid (AP5) and were completely blocked with 6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (CNQX). 4. L-Histidine, which preferentially forms complexes with Cu2+ > Zn2+ > Fe2+ > Mn2+, inhibited both naturally occurring spontaneous and evoked GABAA-mediated large synaptic potentials without affecting the neuronal resting membrane properties. Exogenously applied Zn2+ induced large spontaneous synaptic potentials and prolonged the duration of the evoked potentials. These effects were reversibly blocked by histidine. 5. The metal chelating agent diethyldithiocarbamate had little effect on the large amplitude synaptic potentials. 6. The transition metal divalent cations Fe2+ and Mn2+ did not initiate large synaptic potentials in CA3 neurones; however, Cu2+ depolarized the membrane and enhanced both excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission, resulting in a transient increase in the frequency of the large amplitude events. In comparison, zinc increased the frequency of the large potentials and also induced such events in neurons (P4-21) where innate potentials were absent. The postsynaptic response to ionophoretically applied GABA was either unaffected or slightly enhanced by Zn2+. 7. Under conditions favouring the activation of non-NMDA receptors, excitatory synaptic transmission was unaffected by CP94 but was depressed by Zn2+. Responses to ionophoretically applied glutamate were not inhibited by Zn2+, indicating that Zn2+ affects excitatory synaptic transmission via a presynaptic mechanism. 8. We conclude that the naturally occurring large synaptic potentials in young CA3 neurones are apparently induced by endogenous Zn2+ which can promote or synchronize the release of GABA in the immature hippocampus. PMID:7965838

  18. Differential muscarinic modulation of synaptic transmission in dorsal and ventral regions of the rat nucleus accumbens core.

    PubMed

    Jiang, X; Zhang, J J; Wang, M Y; Sui, N

    2014-01-01

    The nucleus accumbens (NAc) core is critical in the control of motivated behaviors. The muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs) modulating the excitatory inputs into the NAc core have been reported to impact such behaviors. Recent studies suggest that ventral and dorsal regions of the NAc core seem to be innervated by distinct populations of glutamatergic projection neurons. To further examine mAChRs modulation of these glutamatergic inputs to the NAc core, we employed intracellular recordings in rat NAc coronal slice preparation to characterize: 1) the effects of muscarine, an mAChRs agonist, on membrane properties of the NAc core neurons; 2) depolarizing synaptic potentials (DPSP) elicited by ventral and dorsal focal electrical stimuli; and 3) paired-pulse response with paired-pulse stimulation. Here we report that the paired-pulse ratio (PPR) elicited by dorsal stimuli was greater than that elicited by ventral stimuli. Bath application of muscarine (1-30 microM) decreased both ventral and dorsal DPSP in a concentration-dependent manner, with no effect on electrophysiological properties of NAc core neurons. Muscarine at 30 microM also elicited larger depression of dorsal DPSP than ventral DPSP. Moreover, muscarine increased the PPR of both dorsal and ventral DPSP. These data indicate that the glutamatergic afferent fibers traversing the dorsal and ventral NAc are separate, and that differential decrease of distinct afferent excitatory neurotransmission onto NAc core neurons may be mediated by presynaptic mechanisms. PMID:24182333

  19. Syncrip/hnRNP Q influences synaptic transmission and regulates BMP signaling at the Drosophila neuromuscular synapse.

    PubMed

    Halstead, James M; Lin, Yong Qi; Durraine, Lita; Hamilton, Russell S; Ball, Graeme; Neely, Greg G; Bellen, Hugo J; Davis, Ilan

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity involves the modulation of synaptic connections in response to neuronal activity via multiple pathways. One mechanism modulates synaptic transmission by retrograde signals from the post-synapse that influence the probability of vesicle release in the pre-synapse. Despite its importance, very few factors required for the expression of retrograde signals, and proper synaptic transmission, have been identified. Here, we identify the conserved RNA binding protein Syncrip as a new factor that modulates the efficiency of vesicle release from the motoneuron and is required for correct synapse structure. We show that syncrip is required genetically and its protein product is detected only in the muscle and not in the motoneuron itself. This unexpected non-autonomy is at least partly explained by the fact that Syncrip modulates retrograde BMP signals from the muscle back to the motoneuron. We show that Syncrip influences the levels of the Bone Morphogenic Protein ligand Glass Bottom Boat from the post-synapse and regulates the pre-synapse. Our results highlight the RNA-binding protein Syncrip as a novel regulator of synaptic output. Given its known role in regulating translation, we propose that Syncrip is important for maintaining a balance between the strength of presynaptic vesicle release and postsynaptic translation. PMID:25171887

  20. Syncrip/hnRNP Q influences synaptic transmission and regulates BMP signaling at the Drosophila neuromuscular synapse

    PubMed Central

    Halstead, James M.; Lin, Yong Qi; Durraine, Lita; Hamilton, Russell S.; Ball, Graeme; Neely, Greg G.; Bellen, Hugo J.; Davis, Ilan

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Synaptic plasticity involves the modulation of synaptic connections in response to neuronal activity via multiple pathways. One mechanism modulates synaptic transmission by retrograde signals from the post-synapse that influence the probability of vesicle release in the pre-synapse. Despite its importance, very few factors required for the expression of retrograde signals, and proper synaptic transmission, have been identified. Here, we identify the conserved RNA binding protein Syncrip as a new factor that modulates the efficiency of vesicle release from the motoneuron and is required for correct synapse structure. We show that syncrip is required genetically and its protein product is detected only in the muscle and not in the motoneuron itself. This unexpected non-autonomy is at least partly explained by the fact that Syncrip modulates retrograde BMP signals from the muscle back to the motoneuron. We show that Syncrip influences the levels of the Bone Morphogenic Protein ligand Glass Bottom Boat from the post-synapse and regulates the pre-synapse. Our results highlight the RNA-binding protein Syncrip as a novel regulator of synaptic output. Given its known role in regulating translation, we propose that Syncrip is important for maintaining a balance between the strength of presynaptic vesicle release and postsynaptic translation. PMID:25171887

  1. Plasticity of synaptic connections in sensory-motor pathways of the adult locust flight system.

    PubMed

    Wolf, H; Büschges, A

    1997-09-01

    We investigated possible roles of retrograde signals and competitive interactions in the lesion-induced reorganization of synaptic contacts in the locust CNS. Neuronal plasticity is elicited in the adult flight system by removal of afferents from the tegula, a mechanoreceptor organ at the base of the wing. We severed one hindwing organ and studied the resulting rearrangement of synaptic contacts between flight interneurons and afferent neurons from the remaining three tegulae (2 forewing, 1 hindwing). This was done by electric stimulation of afferents and intracellular recording from interneurons (and occasionally motoneurons). Two to three weeks after unilateral tegula lesion, connections between tegula afferents and flight interneurons were altered in the following way. 1) Axons from the forewing tegula on the operated side had established new synaptic contacts with metathoracic elevator interneurons. In addition, the amplitude of compound excitatory postsynaptic potentials elicited by electric stimulation was increased, indicating that a larger number of afferents connected to any given interneuron. 2) On the side contralateral to the lesion, connectivity between axons from the forewing tegula and elevator interneurons was decreased. 3) The efficacy of the (remaining) hindwing afferents appeared to be increased with regard to both synaptic transmission to interneurons and impact on flight motor pattern. 4) Flight motoneurons, which are normally restricted to the ipsilateral hemiganglion, sprouted across the ganglion midline after unilateral tegula removal and apparently established new synaptic contacts with tegula afferents on that side. The changes on the operated side are interpreted as occupation of synaptic space vacated on the interneurons by the severed hindwing afferents. On the contralateral side, the changes in synaptic contact must be elicited by retrograde signals from bilaterally arborizing flight interneurons, because tegula projections remain strictly ipsilateral. The pattern of changes suggests competitive interactions between forewing and hindwing afferents. The present investigation thus presents evidence that the CNS of the mature locust is capable of extensive synaptic rearrangement in response to injury and indicates for the first time the action of retrograde signals from interneurons. PMID:9310419

  2. Inhibition of synaptic transmission and G protein modulation by synthetic CaV2.2 Ca2+ channel peptides

    PubMed Central

    Bucci, Giovanna; Mochida, Sumiko; Stephens, Gary J

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Modulation of presynaptic voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels is a major means of controlling neurotransmitter release. The CaV2.2 Ca2+ channel subunit contains several inhibitory interaction sites for G?? subunits, including the amino terminal (NT) and I–II loop. The NT and I–II loop have also been proposed to undergo a G protein-gated inhibitory interaction, whilst the NT itself has also been proposed to suppress CaV2 channel activity. Here, we investigate the effects of an amino terminal (CaV2.2[45–55]) ‘NT peptide’ and a I–II loop alpha interaction domain (CaV2.2[377–393]) ‘AID peptide’ on synaptic transmission, Ca2+ channel activity and G protein modulation in superior cervical ganglion neurones (SCGNs). Presynaptic injection of NT or AID peptide into SCGN synapses inhibited synaptic transmission and also attenuated noradrenaline-induced G protein modulation. In isolated SCGNs, NT and AID peptides reduced whole-cell Ca2+ current amplitude, modified voltage dependence of Ca2+ channel activation and attenuated noradrenaline-induced G protein modulation. Co-application of NT and AID peptide negated inhibitory actions. Together, these data favour direct peptide interaction with presynaptic Ca2+ channels, with effects on current amplitude and gating representing likely mechanisms responsible for inhibition of synaptic transmission. Mutations to residues reported as determinants of Ca2+ channel function within the NT peptide negated inhibitory effects on synaptic transmission, Ca2+ current amplitude and gating and G protein modulation. A mutation within the proposed QXXER motif for G protein modulation did not abolish inhibitory effects of the AID peptide. This study suggests that the CaV2.2 amino terminal and I–II loop contribute molecular determinants for Ca2+ channel function; the data favour a direct interaction of peptides with Ca2+ channels to inhibit synaptic transmission and attenuate G protein modulation. PMID:21521766

  3. Recording long-term potentiation of synaptic transmission by three-dimensional multi-electrode arrays

    PubMed Central

    Kopanitsa, Maksym V; Afinowi, Nurudeen O; Grant, Seth GN

    2006-01-01

    Background Multi-electrode arrays (MEAs) have become popular tools for recording spontaneous and evoked electrical activity of excitable tissues. The majority of previous studies of synaptic transmission in brain slices employed MEAs with planar electrodes that had limited ability to detect signals coming from deeper, healthier layers of the slice. To overcome this limitation, we used three-dimensional (3D) MEAs with tip-shaped electrodes to probe plasticity of field excitatory synaptic potentials (fEPSPs) in the CA1 area of hippocampal slices of 129S5/SvEvBrd and C57BL/6J-TyrC-Brd mice. Results Using 3D MEAs, we were able to record larger fEPSPs compared to signals measured by planar MEAs. Several stimulation protocols were used to induce long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic responses in the CA1 area recorded following excitation of Schäffer collateral/commissural fibres. Either two trains of high frequency tetanic stimulation or three trains of theta-burst stimulation caused a persistent, pathway specific enhancement of fEPSPs that remained significantly elevated for at least 60 min. A third LTP induction protocol that comprised 150 pulses delivered at 5 Hz, evoked moderate LTP if excitation strength was increased to 1.5× of the baseline stimulus. In all cases, we observed a clear spatial plasticity gradient with maximum LTP levels detected in proximal apical dendrites of pyramidal neurones. No significant differences in the manifestation of LTP were observed between 129S5/SvEvBrd and C57BL/6J-TyrC-Brd mice with the three protocols used. All forms of plasticity were sensitive to inhibition of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors. Conclusion Principal features of LTP (magnitude, pathway specificity, NMDA receptor dependence) recorded in the hippocampal slices using MEAs were very similar to those seen in conventional glass electrode experiments. Advantages of using MEAs are the ability to record from different regions of the slice and the ease of conducting several experiments on a multiplexed platform which could be useful for efficient screening of novel transgenic mice. PMID:16942609

  4. De Novo Mutations in Synaptic Transmission Genes Including DNM1 Cause Epileptic Encephalopathies

    PubMed Central

    Appenzeller, Silke; Balling, Rudi; Barisic, Nina; Baulac, Stéphanie; Caglayan, Hande; Craiu, Dana; De Jonghe, Peter; Depienne, Christel; Dimova, Petia; Djémié, Tania; Gormley, Padhraig; Guerrini, Renzo; Helbig, Ingo; Hjalgrim, Helle; Hoffman-Zacharska, Dorota; Jähn, Johanna; Klein, Karl Martin; Koeleman, Bobby; Komarek, Vladimir; Krause, Roland; Kuhlenbäumer, Gregor; Leguern, Eric; Lehesjoki, Anna-Elina; Lemke, Johannes R.; Lerche, Holger; Linnankivi, Tarja; Marini, Carla; May, Patrick; Møller, Rikke S.; Muhle, Hiltrud; Pal, Deb; Palotie, Aarno; Pendziwiat, Manuela; Robbiano, Angela; Roelens, Filip; Rosenow, Felix; Selmer, Kaja; Serratosa, Jose M.; Sisodiya, Sanjay; Stephani, Ulrich; Sterbova, Katalin; Striano, Pasquale; Suls, Arvid; Talvik, Tiina; von Spiczak, Sarah; Weber, Yvonne; Weckhuysen, Sarah; Zara, Federico; Abou-Khalil, Bassel; Alldredge, Brian K.; Andermann, Eva; Andermann, Frederick; Amron, Dina; Bautista, Jocelyn F.; Berkovic, Samuel F.; Bluvstein, Judith; Boro, Alex; Cascino, Gregory; Consalvo, Damian; Crumrine, Patricia; Devinsky, Orrin; Dlugos, Dennis; Epstein, Michael P.; Fiol, Miguel; Fountain, Nathan B.; French, Jacqueline; Friedman, Daniel; Geller, Eric B.; Glauser, Tracy; Glynn, Simon; Haas, Kevin; Haut, Sheryl R.; Hayward, Jean; Helmers, Sandra L.; Joshi, Sucheta; Kanner, Andres; Kirsch, Heidi E.; Knowlton, Robert C.; Kossoff, Eric H.; Kuperman, Rachel; Kuzniecky, Ruben; Lowenstein, Daniel H.; McGuire, Shannon M.; Motika, Paul V.; Novotny, Edward J.; Ottman, Ruth; Paolicchi, Juliann M.; Parent, Jack; Park, Kristen; Poduri, Annapurna; Sadleir, Lynette; Scheffer, Ingrid E.; Shellhaas, Renée A.; Sherr, Elliott; Shih, Jerry J.; Singh, Rani; Sirven, Joseph; Smith, Michael C.; Sullivan, Joe; Thio, Liu Lin; Venkat, Anu; Vining, Eileen P.G.; Von Allmen, Gretchen K.; Weisenberg, Judith L.; Widdess-Walsh, Peter; Winawer, Melodie R.; Allen, Andrew S.; Berkovic, Samuel F.; Cossette, Patrick; Delanty, Norman; Dlugos, Dennis; Eichler, Evan E.; Epstein, Michael P.; Glauser, Tracy; Goldstein, David B.; Han, Yujun; Heinzen, Erin L.; Johnson, Michael R.; Kuzniecky, Ruben; Lowenstein, Daniel H.; Marson, Anthony G.; Mefford, Heather C.; Nieh, Sahar Esmaeeli; O’Brien, Terence J.; Ottman, Ruth; Petrou, Stephen; Petrovski, Slavé; Poduri, Annapurna; Ruzzo, Elizabeth K.; Scheffer, Ingrid E.; Sherr, Elliott

    2014-01-01

    Emerging evidence indicates that epileptic encephalopathies are genetically highly heterogeneous, underscoring the need for large cohorts of well-characterized individuals to further define the genetic landscape. Through a collaboration between two consortia (EuroEPINOMICS and Epi4K/EPGP), we analyzed exome-sequencing data of 356 trios with the “classical” epileptic encephalopathies, infantile spasms and Lennox Gastaut syndrome, including 264 trios previously analyzed by the Epi4K/EPGP consortium. In this expanded cohort, we find 429 de novo mutations, including de novo mutations in DNM1 in five individuals and de novo mutations in GABBR2, FASN, and RYR3 in two individuals each. Unlike previous studies, this cohort is sufficiently large to show a significant excess of de novo mutations in epileptic encephalopathy probands compared to the general population using a likelihood analysis (p = 8.2 × 10?4), supporting a prominent role for de novo mutations in epileptic encephalopathies. We bring statistical evidence that mutations in DNM1 cause epileptic encephalopathy, find suggestive evidence for a role of three additional genes, and show that at least 12% of analyzed individuals have an identifiable causal de novo mutation. Strikingly, 75% of mutations in these probands are predicted to disrupt a protein involved in regulating synaptic transmission, and there is a significant enrichment of de novo mutations in genes in this pathway in the entire cohort as well. These findings emphasize an important role for synaptic dysregulation in epileptic encephalopathies, above and beyond that caused by ion channel dysfunction. PMID:25262651

  5. Reciprocal regulation of inhibitory synaptic transmission by nicotinic and muscarinic receptors in rat nucleus accumbens shell

    PubMed Central

    Yamamoto, Kiyofumi; Ebihara, Katsuko; Koshikawa, Noriaki; Kobayashi, Masayuki

    2013-01-01

    Medium spiny neurones (MSNs) in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) are the principal neurones whose activities are regulated by GABAergic inputs from MSNs and fast-spiking interneurones (FSNs). Cholinergic interneurones play important roles in the regulation of activity in MSNs; however, how acetylcholine modulates inhibitory synaptic transmission from MSNs/FSNs to MSNs remains unknown. We performed paired whole-cell patch-clamp recordings from MSNs and FSNs in rat NAc shell slice preparations and examined cholinergic effects on unitary inhibitory postsynaptic currents (uIPSCs). Carbachol (1 μm) suppressed uIPSC amplitude by 58.3 ± 8.0% in MSN→MSN connections, accompanied by increases in paired-pulse ratio and failure rate, suggesting that acetylcholine reduces the probability of GABA release from the synaptic terminals of MSNs. Carbachol-induced uIPSC suppression was antagonised by 100 μm atropine, and was mimicked by pilocarpine (1 μm) and acetylcholine (1 μm) but not nicotine (1 μm). Application of AM251 slightly reduced carbachol-induced uIPSC suppression (30.8 ± 8.9%), suggesting an involvement of endocannabinoid signalling in muscarinic suppression of uIPSCs. In contrast, FSN→MSN connections showed that pilocarpine had little effect on the uIPSC amplitude, whereas both nicotine and acetylcholine facilitated uIPSC amplitude, with decreases in failure rate and paired-pulse ratio, suggesting that nicotine-induced uIPSC facilitation is mediated by presynaptic mechanisms. Miniature IPSC recordings support these hypotheses of presynaptic cholinergic mechanisms. These results suggest a differential role for muscarinic and nicotinic receptors in GABA release, which depends on presynaptic neuronal subtypes in the NAc shell. PMID:24018951

  6. Neuron-astrocyte interaction enhance GABAergic synaptic transmission in a manner dependent on key metabolic enzymes

    PubMed Central

    Kaczor, Przemys?aw; Rakus, Dariusz; Mozrzymas, Jerzy W.

    2015-01-01

    Gamma aminobutric acid (GABA) is the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in the adult brain and mechanisms of GABAergic inhibition have been intensely investigated in the past decades. Recent studies provided evidence for an important role of astrocytes in shaping GABAergic currents. One of the most obvious, but yet poorly understood, mechanisms of the cross-talk between GABAergic currents and astrocytes is metabolism including neurotransmitter homeostasis. In particular, how modulation of GABAergic currents by astrocytes depends on key enzymes involved in cellular metabolism remains largely unknown. To address this issue, we have considered two simple models of neuronal culture (NC): nominally astrocyte-free NC and neuronal-astrocytic co-cultures (ANCC). Miniature Inhibitory Postsynaptic Currents (mIPSCs) were recorded in control conditions and in the presence of different enzyme blockers. We report that enrichment of NC with astrocytes results in a marked increase in mIPSC frequency. This enhancement of GABAergic activity was accompanied by increased number of GAD65 and vGAT puncta, indicating that at least a part of the frequency enhancement was due to increased number of synaptic contacts. Inhibition of glutamine synthetase (Glns) (with MSO) strongly reduced mIPSC frequency in ANCC but had no effect in NC. Moreover, treatment of ANCC with inhibitor of glycogen phosphorylase (Gys) (BAYU6751) or with selective inhibitor of astrocytic Krebs cycle, fluoroacetate, resulted in a marked reduction of mIPSC frequency in ANCC having no effect in NC. We conclude that GABAergic synaptic transmission strongly depends on neuron-astrocyte interaction in a manner dependent on key metabolic enzymes as well as on the Krebs cycle. PMID:25914620

  7. Synaptic Transmission from Horizontal Cells to Cones Is Impaired by Loss of Connexin Hemichannels

    PubMed Central

    Klaassen, Lauw J.; Sun, Ziyi; Steijaert, Marvin N.; Bolte, Petra; Fahrenfort, Iris; Sjoerdsma, Trijntje; Klooster, Jan; Claassen, Yvonne; Shields, Colleen R.; Ten Eikelder, Huub M. M.; Janssen-Bienhold, Ulrike; Zoidl, Georg; McMahon, Douglas G.; Kamermans, Maarten

    2011-01-01

    In the vertebrate retina, horizontal cells generate the inhibitory surround of bipolar cells, an essential step in contrast enhancement. For the last decades, the mechanism involved in this inhibitory synaptic pathway has been a major controversy in retinal research. One hypothesis suggests that connexin hemichannels mediate this negative feedback signal; another suggests that feedback is mediated by protons. Mutant zebrafish were generated that lack connexin 55.5 hemichannels in horizontal cells. Whole cell voltage clamp recordings were made from isolated horizontal cells and cones in flat mount retinas. Light-induced feedback from horizontal cells to cones was reduced in mutants. A reduction of feedback was also found when horizontal cells were pharmacologically hyperpolarized but was absent when they were pharmacologically depolarized. Hemichannel currents in isolated horizontal cells showed a similar behavior. The hyperpolarization-induced hemichannel current was strongly reduced in the mutants while the depolarization-induced hemichannel current was not. Intracellular recordings were made from horizontal cells. Consistent with impaired feedback in the mutant, spectral opponent responses in horizontal cells were diminished in these animals. A behavioral assay revealed a lower contrast-sensitivity, illustrating the role of the horizontal cell to cone feedback pathway in contrast enhancement. Model simulations showed that the observed modifications of feedback can be accounted for by an ephaptic mechanism. A model for feedback, in which the number of connexin hemichannels is reduced to about 40%, fully predicts the specific asymmetric modification of feedback. To our knowledge, this is the first successful genetic interference in the feedback pathway from horizontal cells to cones. It provides direct evidence for an unconventional role of connexin hemichannels in the inhibitory synapse between horizontal cells and cones. This is an important step in resolving a long-standing debate about the unusual form of (ephaptic) synaptic transmission between horizontal cells and cones in the vertebrate retina. PMID:21811399

  8. Active role of glutamate uptake in the synaptic transmission from retinal nonspiking neurons.

    PubMed

    Matsui, K; Hosoi, N; Tachibana, M

    1999-08-15

    We examined the role of glutamate uptake in the synaptic transmission of graded responses from newt retinal bipolar cells (BCs) to ganglion layer cells (GLCs). In dissociated Müller cells (retinal glia), glutamate evoked an uptake current that was effectively inhibited by L-trans-pyrrolidine-2,4-dicarboxylic acid (PDC). PDC had no effect on the non-NMDA receptors of dissociated spiking neurons. In the retinal slice preparation, dual whole-cell recordings were performed from a pair of BC and GLC. A depolarizing pulse applied to a BC activated the Ca(2+) current (I(Ca)) in the BC and evoked an EPSC in the GLC. Application of PDC prolonged both non-NMDA and NMDA receptor-mediated components of the evoked EPSC but changed neither the amplitude nor time course of I(Ca). When the slice preparation was superfused with a solution containing glutamate but not PDC, the evoked EPSC decreased in amplitude without changing the time course, suggesting that the prolongation of the evoked EPSC is not attributable to a simple increase in ambient glutamate concentration after inhibition of glutamate uptake. Because PDC did not affect the amplitude, time course, or frequency of spontaneous EPSCs, it is unlikely that PDC modified presynaptic and/or postsynaptic mechanisms. These results indicate that inhibition of glutamate uptake slows the clearance of glutamate accumulated in the synaptic cleft by multiple quantal release and prolongs the evoked EPSC. The role of glutamate uptake at synapses in the inner retina is not only to maintain the extracellular glutamate concentration at a low level but also to terminate the light-evoked EPSCs rapidly. PMID:10436033

  9. Contribution of estrogen receptor subtypes, ER?, ER?, and GPER1 in rapid estradiol-mediated enhancement of hippocampal synaptic transmission in mice.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Ashok; Bean, Linda A; Rani, Asha; Jackson, Travis; Foster, Thomas C

    2015-12-01

    Estradiol rapidly modulates hippocampal synaptic plasticity and synaptic transmission; however, the contribution of the various estrogen receptors to rapid changes in synaptic function is unclear. This study examined the effect of estrogen receptor selective agonists on hippocampal synaptic transmission in slices obtained from 3-5-month-old wild type (WT), estrogen receptor alpha (ER?KO), and beta (ER?KO) knockout female ovariectomized mice. Hippocampal slices were prepared 10-16 days following ovariectomy and extracellular excitatory postsynaptic field potentials were recorded from CA3-CA1 synaptic contacts before and following application of 17?-estradiol-3-benzoate (EB, 100 pM), the G-protein estrogen receptor 1 (GPER1) agonist G1 (100 nM), the ER? selective agonist propyl pyrazole triol (PPT, 100 nM), or the ER? selective agonist diarylpropionitrile (DPN, 1 µM). Across all groups, EB and G1 increased the synaptic response to a similar extent. Furthermore, prior G1 application occluded the EB-mediated enhancement of the synaptic response and the GPER1 antagonist, G15 (100 nM), inhibited the enhancement of the synaptic response induced by EB application. We confirmed that the ER? and ER? selective agonists (PPT and DPN) had effects on synaptic responses specific to animals that expressed the relevant receptor; however, PPT and DPN produced only a small increase in synaptic transmission relative to EB or the GPER1 agonist. We demonstrate that the increase in synaptic transmission is blocked by inhibition of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) activity. Furthermore, EB was able to increase ERK activity regardless of genotype. These results suggest that ERK activation and enhancement of synaptic transmission by EB involves multiple estrogen receptor subtypes. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:25980457

  10. Calcium channels involved in synaptic transmission at the mature and regenerating mouse neuromuscular junction.

    PubMed Central

    Katz, E; Ferro, P A; Weisz, G; Uchitel, O D

    1996-01-01

    1. The involvement of the different types of voltage-dependent calcium channels (VDCCs) in synaptic transmission at the mature and newly formed mammalian neuromuscular junction was studied by evaluating the effects of L-, P/Q- and N-type VDCC antagonists on transmitter release in normal and reinnervating levator auris preparations of adult mice. 2. Nerve-evoked transmitter release was blocked by omega-agatoxin IVA (omega-AgaIVA), a P/Q-type VDCC blocker, both in normal and reinnervating endplates (100 nM omega-AgaIVA caused > 90% inhibition). The N-type VDCC antagonist omega-conotoxin GVIA (omega-CgTX; 1 and 5 microM), as occurs in normal preparations, did not significantly affect this type of release during reinnervation. Nitrendipine (1-10 microM), an L-type VDCC blocker, strongly antagonized release in reinnervating muscles (approximately 40-69% blockade) and lacked any effect in normal preparations. 3. In reinnervating muscles, spontaneous release was not dependent on Ca2+ entry through either P- or L-type VDCCs. Neither 100 nM omega-AgaIVA nor 10 microM nitrendipine affected the miniature endplate potential (MEPP) frequency or amplitude. 4. At the newly formed endplates, K(+)-evoked release was dependent on Ca2+ entry through VDCCs of the P-type family (100 nM omega-AgaIVA reduced approximately 70% of the K(+)-evoked MEPP frequency). L-type VDCCs were found not to participate in this type of release (10 microM nitrendipine lacked any effect). 5. In reinnervating muscles, the L-type VDCC blocker, nitrendipine (10 microM), provoked a significant increase (approximately 25%) in the latency of the evoked endplate potential (EPP). This drug also caused an increase (approximately 0.3 ms) in the latency of the presynaptic currents. The P/Q- and Ny-type VDCC blockers did not affect the latency of the EPP. 6. These results show that at newly formed mouse neuromuscular junctions, as occurs in mature preparations, VDCCs of the P-type family play a prominent role in evoked transmitter release whereas N-type channels are not involved in this process. In addition, signal conduction and transmitter release become highly sensitive to nitrendipine during reinnervation. This suggests that L-type VDCCs may play a role in synaptic transmission at the immature mammalian neuromuscular junction. Images Figure 2 PMID:9003554

  11. An intact peripheral nerve preparation for monitoring inputs from single muscle afferent fibres.

    PubMed

    Mackie, P D; Rowe, M J

    1997-01-01

    A preparation is described that permits the monitoring of activity from individual muscle afferent nerve fibres in an intact peripheral nerve in the forelimb of the cat. The nerve is a fine branch of the deep radial that supplies the indicis proprius muscle. When it is freed from nearby tissue over a length of 2-5 cm and placed in continuity over a silver hook electrode, it becomes possible to identify and monitor the impulse activity from each muscle afferent fibre activated by stretch or vibration applied to the muscle tendon or by focal mechanical stimulation of the muscle at the presumed site of individual spindle receptors. With this preparation it is possible to examine the central actions and security of transmission at central synaptic targets for single, identified muscle afferent fibres arising in the cat's forearm. PMID:9028790

  12. Enhanced excitatory and reduced inhibitory synaptic transmission contribute to persistent pain-induced neuronal hyper-responsiveness in anterior cingulate cortex.

    PubMed

    Gong, K-R; Cao, F-L; He, Y; Gao, C-Y; Wang, D-D; Li, H; Zhang, F-K; An, Y-Y; Lin, Q; Chen, J

    2010-12-29

    The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) has been demonstrated to play an important role in the affective dimension of pain. Although much evidence has pointed to an increased excitatory synaptic transmission in the ACC in some of the pathological pain state, the inhibitory synaptic transmission in this process has not been well studied. Also, the overall changes of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission have not been comparatively studied in an animal model displaying both long-term persistent nociception and hyperalgesia. Here we used patch clamp recordings in ACC brain slices to observe the changes in synaptic transmission in a pain model induced by peripheral bee venom injection. First, we show that, comparing with those of naive and saline controlled rats, there was a significant increase in spike frequency in ACC neurons harvested from rats after 2 h period of peripheral persistent painful stimuli. Second, it is further shown that the frequency, amplitude and half-width were all increased in spontaneous excitatory post-synaptic currents (sEPSCs), while the amplitude of spontaneous inhibitory post-synaptic currents (sIPSCs) was decreased. The recordings of miniature post-synaptic currents demonstrate an increase in frequency of miniature excitatory post-synaptic currents (mEPSCs) and a decrease in both frequency and amplitude of miniature inhibitory post-synaptic currents (mIPSCs) in rats' ACC slice of bee venom treatment. Taken together, the present results demonstrate an unparalleled change between excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in the ACC under a state of peripheral persistent nociception that might be underlying mechanisms of the excessive excitability of the ACC neurons. We propose that the painful stimuli when lasts or becomes persistent may cause a disruption of the balance between excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission that can contribute to the functional change in the ACC. PMID:20951771

  13. Non-additive modulation of synaptic transmission by serotonin, adenosine, and cholinergic modulators in the sensory thalamus

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Ya-Chin; Hu, Chun-Chang; Lai, Yi-Chen

    2015-01-01

    The thalamus relays sensory information to the cortex. Oscillatory activities of the thalamocortical network are modulated by monoamines, acetylcholine, and adenosine, and could be the key features characteristic of different vigilance states. Although the thalamus is almost always subject to the actions of more than just one neuromodulators, reports on the modulatory effect of coexisting neuromodulators on thalamic synaptic transmission are unexpectedly scarce. We found that, if present alone, monoamine or adenosine decreases retinothalamic synaptic strength and short-term depression, whereas cholinergic modulators generally enhance postsynaptic response to presynaptic activity. However, coexistence of different modulators tends to produce non-additive effect, not predictable based on the action of individual modulators. Acetylcholine, acting via nicotinic receptors, can interact with either serotonin or adenosine to abolish most short-term synaptic depression. Moreover, the coexistence of adenosine and monoamine, with or without acetylcholine, results in robustly decreased synaptic strength and transforms short-term synaptic depression to facilitation. These findings are consistent with a view that acetylcholine is essential for an “enriched” sensory flow through the thalamus, and the flow is trimmed down by concomitant monoamine or adenosine (presumably for the wakefulness and rapid-eye movement, or REM, sleep states, respectively). In contrast, concomitant adenosine and monoamine would lead to a markedly “deprived” (and high-pass filtered) sensory flow, and thus the dramatic decrease of monoamine may constitute the basic demarcation between non-REM and REM sleep. The collective actions of different neuromodulators on thalamic synaptic transmission thus could be indispensable for the understanding of network responsiveness in different vigilance states. PMID:25852468

  14. Delayed reduction of hippocampal synaptic transmission and spines following exposure to repeated subclinical doses of organophosphorus pesticide in adult mice.

    PubMed

    Speed, Haley E; Blaiss, Cory A; Kim, Ahleum; Haws, Michael E; Melvin, Neal R; Jennings, Michael; Eisch, Amelia J; Powell, Craig M

    2012-01-01

    Agricultural and household organophosphorus (OP) pesticides inhibit acetylcholinesterase (AchE), resulting in increased acetylcholine (Ach) in the central nervous system. In adults, acute and prolonged exposure to high doses of AchE inhibitors causes severe, clinically apparent symptoms, followed by lasting memory impairments and cognitive dysfunction. The neurotoxicity of repeated environmental exposure to lower, subclinical doses of OP pesticides in adults is not as well studied. However, repeated exposure to acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, such as chlorpyrifos (CPF), pyridostigmine, and sarin nerve agent, has been epidemiologically linked to delayed onset symptoms in Gulf War Illness and may be relevant to environmental exposure in farm workers among others. We treated adult mice with a subclinical dose (5 mg/kg) of CPF for 5 consecutive days and investigated hippocampal synaptic transmission and spine density early (2-7 days) and late (3 months) after CPF administration. No signs of cholinergic toxicity were observed at any time during or after treatment. At 2-7 days after the last injection, we found increased synaptic transmission in the CA3-CA1 region of the hippocampus of CPF-treated mice compared with controls. In contrast, at 3 months after CPF administration, we observed a 50% reduction in synaptic transmission likely due to a corresponding 50% decrease in CA1 pyramidal neuron synaptic spine density. This study is the first to identify a biphasic progression of synaptic abnormalities following repeated OP exposure and suggests that even in the absence of acute cholinergic toxicity, repeated exposure to CPF causes delayed persistent damage to the adult brain in vivo. PMID:21948870

  15. Delayed Reduction of Hippocampal Synaptic Transmission and Spines Following Exposure to Repeated Subclinical Doses of Organophosphorus Pesticide in Adult Mice

    PubMed Central

    Speed, Haley E.; Blaiss, Cory A.; Kim, Ahleum; Haws, Michael E.; Melvin, Neal R.; Jennings, Michael; Eisch, Amelia J.; Powell, Craig M.

    2012-01-01

    Agricultural and household organophosphorus (OP) pesticides inhibit acetylcholinesterase (AchE), resulting in increased acetylcholine (Ach) in the central nervous system. In adults, acute and prolonged exposure to high doses of AchE inhibitors causes severe, clinically apparent symptoms, followed by lasting memory impairments and cognitive dysfunction. The neurotoxicity of repeated environmental exposure to lower, subclinical doses of OP pesticides in adults is not as well studied. However, repeated exposure to acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, such as chlorpyrifos (CPF), pyridostigmine, and sarin nerve agent, has been epidemiologically linked to delayed onset symptoms in Gulf War Illness and may be relevant to environmental exposure in farm workers among others. We treated adult mice with a subclinical dose (5 mg/kg) of CPF for 5 consecutive days and investigated hippocampal synaptic transmission and spine density early (2–7 days) and late (3 months) after CPF administration. No signs of cholinergic toxicity were observed at any time during or after treatment. At 2–7 days after the last injection, we found increased synaptic transmission in the CA3-CA1 region of the hippocampus of CPF-treated mice compared with controls. In contrast, at 3 months after CPF administration, we observed a 50% reduction in synaptic transmission likely due to a corresponding 50% decrease in CA1 pyramidal neuron synaptic spine density. This study is the first to identify a biphasic progression of synaptic abnormalities following repeated OP exposure and suggests that even in the absence of acute cholinergic toxicity, repeated exposure to CPF causes delayed persistent damage to the adult brain in vivo. PMID:21948870

  16. Structural elements that underlie Doc2β function during asynchronous synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Xue, Renhao; Gaffaney, Jon D.; Chapman, Edwin R.

    2015-01-01

    Double C2-like domain-containing proteins alpha and beta (Doc2α and Doc2β) are tandem C2-domain proteins proposed to function as Ca2+ sensors for asynchronous neurotransmitter release. Here, we systematically analyze each of the negatively charged residues that mediate binding of Ca2+ to the β isoform. The Ca2+ ligands in the C2A domain were dispensable for Ca2+-dependent translocation to the plasma membrane, with one exception: neutralization of D220 resulted in constitutive translocation. In contrast, three of the five Ca2+ ligands in the C2B domain are required for translocation. Importantly, translocation was correlated with the ability of the mutants to enhance asynchronous release when overexpressed in neurons. Finally, replacement of specific Ca2+/lipid-binding loops of synaptotagmin 1, a Ca2+ sensor for synchronous release, with corresponding loops from Doc2β, resulted in chimeras that yielded slower kinetics in vitro and slower excitatory postsynaptic current decays in neurons. Together, these data reveal the key determinants of Doc2β that underlie its function during the slow phase of synaptic transmission. PMID:26195798

  17. Cannabinoid CB1 receptor signaling dichotomously modulates inhibitory and excitatory synaptic transmission in rat inner retina.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiao-Han; Wu, Yi; Yang, Xiao-Fang; Miao, Yanying; Zhang, Chuan-Qiang; Dong, Ling-Dan; Yang, Xiong-Li; Wang, Zhongfeng

    2016-01-01

    In the inner retina, ganglion cells (RGCs) integrate and process excitatory signal from bipolar cells (BCs) and inhibitory signal from amacrine cells (ACs). Using multiple labeling immunohistochemistry, we first revealed the expression of the cannabinoid CB1 receptor (CB1R) at the terminals of ACs and BCs in rat retina. By patch-clamp techniques, we then showed how the activation of this receptor dichotomously regulated miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs), mediated by GABAA receptors and glycine receptors, and miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs), mediated by AMPA receptors, of RGCs in rat retinal slices. WIN55212-2 (WIN), a CB1R agonist, reduced the mIPSC frequency due to an inhibition of L-type Ca(2+) channels no matter whether AMPA receptors were blocked. In contrast, WIN reduced the mEPSC frequency by suppressing T-type Ca(2+) channels only when inhibitory inputs to RGCs were present, which could be in part due to less T-type Ca(2+) channels of cone BCs, presynaptic to RGCs, being in an inactivation state under such condition. This unique feature of CB1R-mediated retrograde regulation provides a novel mechanism for modulating excitatory synaptic transmission in the inner retina. Moreover, depolarization of RGCs suppressed mIPSCs of these cells, an effect that was eliminated by the CB1R antagonist SR141716, suggesting that endocannabinoid is indeed released from RGCs. PMID:25273281

  18. Raised Intracellular Calcium Contributes to Ischemia-Induced Depression of Evoked Synaptic Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Jalini, Shirin; Ye, Hui; Tonkikh, Alexander A.; Charlton, Milton P.; Carlen, Peter L.

    2016-01-01

    Oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) leads to depression of evoked synaptic transmission, for which the mechanisms remain unclear. We hypothesized that increased presynaptic [Ca2+]i during transient OGD contributes to the depression of evoked field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs). Additionally, we hypothesized that increased buffering of intracellular calcium would shorten electrophysiological recovery after transient ischemia. Mouse hippocampal slices were exposed to 2 to 8 min of OGD. fEPSPs evoked by Schaffer collateral stimulation were recorded in the stratum radiatum, and whole cell current or voltage clamp recordings were performed in CA1 neurons. Transient ischemia led to increased presynaptic [Ca2+]i, (shown by calcium imaging), increased spontaneous miniature EPSP/Cs, and depressed evoked fEPSPs, partially mediated by adenosine. Buffering of intracellular Ca2+ during OGD by membrane-permeant chelators (BAPTA-AM or EGTA-AM) partially prevented fEPSP depression and promoted faster electrophysiological recovery when the OGD challenge was stopped. The blocker of BK channels, charybdotoxin (ChTX), also prevented fEPSP depression, but did not accelerate post-ischemic recovery. These results suggest that OGD leads to elevated presynaptic [Ca2+]i, which reduces evoked transmitter release; this effect can be reversed by increased intracellular Ca2+ buffering which also speeds recovery. PMID:26934214

  19. Long-term potentiation of GABAergic synaptic transmission in neonatal rat hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    Caillard, Olivier; Ben-Ari, Yehezkel; Gaiarsa, Jean-Luc

    1999-01-01

    The plasticity of GABAergic synapses was investigated in neonatal rat hippocampal slices obtained between postnatal days 3 and 6 using intracellular recording techniques. Ionotropic glutamate receptor antagonists were present throughout the experiments to isolate GABAA receptor-mediated postsynaptic potentials (GABAA PSPs) or currents (GABAA PSCs). Repetitive depolarizing pulses (20 pulses, 0·5 s duration, at 0·1 Hz, each pulse generating 4-6 action potentials) induced a long-term potentiation in the slope and amplitude of the evoked GABAA PSPs and GABAA PSCs. Long-term potentiation was prevented by intracellular injection of the calcium chelator BAPTA (50 mM), or when the voltage-dependent calcium channels blockers Ni2+ (50 ?M) and nimodipine (10 ?M) were bath applied. Repetitive depolarizing pulses induced a persistent (over 1 h) increase in the frequency of spontaneous GABAA PSCs. Repetitive depolarizing pulses induced a long-lasting increase in the frequency of miniature GABAA PSCs, without altering their amplitude or decay-time constant. It is concluded that the postsynaptic activation of voltage-dependent calcium channels leads to a long-term potentiation of GABAergic synaptic transmission in neonatal rat hippocampus. This form of plasticity is expressed as an increase in the probability of GABA release or in the number of functional synapses, rather than as an upregulation of postsynaptic GABAA receptor numbers or conductance at functional synapses. PMID:10373693

  20. Structural elements that underlie Doc2? function during asynchronous synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Xue, Renhao; Gaffaney, Jon D; Chapman, Edwin R

    2015-08-01

    Double C2-like domain-containing proteins alpha and beta (Doc2? and Doc2?) are tandem C2-domain proteins proposed to function as Ca(2+) sensors for asynchronous neurotransmitter release. Here, we systematically analyze each of the negatively charged residues that mediate binding of Ca(2+) to the ? isoform. The Ca(2+) ligands in the C2A domain were dispensable for Ca(2+)-dependent translocation to the plasma membrane, with one exception: neutralization of D220 resulted in constitutive translocation. In contrast, three of the five Ca(2+) ligands in the C2B domain are required for translocation. Importantly, translocation was correlated with the ability of the mutants to enhance asynchronous release when overexpressed in neurons. Finally, replacement of specific Ca(2+)/lipid-binding loops of synaptotagmin 1, a Ca(2+) sensor for synchronous release, with corresponding loops from Doc2?, resulted in chimeras that yielded slower kinetics in vitro and slower excitatory postsynaptic current decays in neurons. Together, these data reveal the key determinants of Doc2? that underlie its function during the slow phase of synaptic transmission. PMID:26195798

  1. Anatomical remodelling of the supraoptic nucleus: changes in synaptic and extrasynaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Oliet, S H R; Piet, R

    2004-04-01

    The adult hypothalamic-neurohypophysial system undergoes activity-dependent morphological plasticity that modifies the astrocytic enwrapping of its magnocellular neurones. For a long time, the functional consequences of such changes have remained hypothetical. Modifications in the glial environment of neurones are expected to have important physiological repercussions in view of the various functions played by astrocytes in the central nervous system. In particular, glial cells are essential for uptake of neurotransmitters, including glutamate, and for physically and functionally restricting diffusion of neuroactive substances within the extracellular space. Recent studies performed in the supraoptic nucleus of lactating and chronically dehydrated animals, in conditions where astrocytic coverage of neurones is reduced, have revealed a significant impairment of glutamate clearance. The resulting accumulation of the excitatory amino acid in the extracellular space around glutamatergic inputs causes an enhanced activation of presynaptic metabotropic glutamate receptors that inhibit transmitter release. In the supraoptic nucleus of lactating rats, neuroglial remodelling is accompanied by modification of the geometry, size and diffusion properties of the extracellular space. The latter observations suggest that, in the activated supraoptic nucleus, the range of action and the concentration of released neuroactive substances may be significantly enhanced. Overall, our observations indicate that the glial environment of supraoptic neurones influences synaptic glutamatergic transmission, as well as extrasynaptic forms of communication. PMID:15089966

  2. The quantal component of synaptic transmission from sensory hair cells to the vestibular calyx.

    PubMed

    Highstein, Stephen M; Mann, Mary Anne; Holstein, Gay R; Rabbitt, Richard D

    2015-06-01

    Spontaneous and stimulus-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were recorded in calyx nerve terminals from the turtle vestibular lagena to quantify key attributes of quantal transmission at this synapse. On average, EPSC events had a magnitude of ? 42 pA, a rise time constant of ?(0) ? 229 ?s, decayed to baseline with a time constant of ?(R) ? 690 ?s, and carried ? 46 fC of charge. Individual EPSCs varied in magnitude and decay time constant. Variability in the EPSC decay time constant was hair cell dependent and due in part to a slow protraction of the EPSC in some cases. Variability in EPSC size was well described by an integer summation of unitary quanta, with each quanta of glutamate gating a unitary postsynaptic current of ? 23 pA. The unitary charge was ? 26 fC for EPSCs with a simple exponential decay and increased to ? 48 fC for EPSCs exhibiting a slow protraction. The EPSC magnitude and the number of simultaneous unitary quanta within each event increased with presynaptic stimulus intensity. During tonic hair cell depolarization, both the EPSC magnitude and event rate exhibited adaptive run down over time. Present data from a reptilian calyx are remarkably similar to noncalyceal vestibular synaptic terminals in diverse species, indicating that the skewed EPSC size distribution and multiquantal release might be an ancestral property of inner ear ribbon synapses. PMID:25878150

  3. Muscarinic modulation of synaptic transmission via endocannabinoid signalling in the rat midbrain periaqueductal gray.

    PubMed

    Lau, Benjamin K; Vaughan, Christopher W

    2008-11-01

    The midbrain periaqueductal gray (PAG) is involved in organizing behavioral responses to threat, stress, and pain. These PAG functions are modulated by cholinergic agents. In the present study, we examined the cholinergic modulation of synaptic transmission in the PAG using whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings from rat midbrain slices. We found that the cholinergic agonist carbachol reduced the amplitude of evoked inhibitory and excitatory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs and EPSCs, respectively) in all PAG neurons, and this was abolished by the muscarinic receptor antagonist atropine. Carbachol increased the paired pulse ratio of evoked IPSCs and EPSCs, and it reduced the rate, but not the amplitude of spontaneous miniature IPSCs. The carbachol inhibition of evoked IPSCs was mimicked by the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor physostigmine and was reduced by the M1 and M1/M3 muscarinic receptor antagonists pirenzepine and 4-diphenylacetoxy-N-methylpiperidine, but not by the M2 and M4 antagonists gallamine and PD-102807 (3,6a,11,14-tetrahydro-9-methoxy-2-methyl-(12H)-isoquino [1,2-b]pyrrolo[3,2-f][1,3]benzoxazine-1-carboxylic acid, ethyl ester). The carbachol inhibition of evoked IPSCs was reduced by the cannabinoid CB(1) receptor antagonist AM251 (1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-5-(4-iodophenyl)-4-methyl-N-1-piperidinyl-1H-pyrazole-3-carboxamide) and the diacylglycerol (DAG) lipase inhibitor tetrahydrolipstatin, and it was abolished in the presence of both AM251 and gallamine. The carbachol inhibition of evoked EPSCs was also reduced in the combined presence of gallamine and AM251. These results indicate that M1 induced inhibition of GABAergic transmission within the PAG is mediated via endocannabinoids, which are produced via the phospholipase C/DAG lipase pathway and activate presynaptic cannabinoid CB(1) receptors. Thus, presynaptic muscarinic modulation of PAG function is mediated indirectly by M1 receptor-induced endocannabinoid signaling and directly by M2 receptors. PMID:18678620

  4. Dual Action of Hydrogen Peroxide on Synaptic Transmission at the Frog Neuromuscular Junction

    PubMed Central

    Giniatullin, A R; Giniatullin, R A

    2003-01-01

    There is evidence that reactive oxygen species (ROS) are produced and released during neuromuscular activity, but their role in synaptic transmission is not known. Using a two-electrode voltage-clamp technique, at frog neuromuscular junctions, the action H2O2 on end-plate currents (EPC) was studied to determine the targets for this membrane-permeable ROS. In curarized or cut muscles, micromolar concentrations of H2O2 increased the amplitude of EPCs. Higher (> 30 ?m) doses inhibited EPCs and prolonged current decay. These effects were presynaptic since H2O2 did not change the amplitude or duration of miniature EPCs (although it reduced the rate of spontaneous release at high concentrations). Quantal analysis and deconvolution methods showed that facilitation of EPCs was due to increased quantal release, while depression was accompanied by temporal dispersion of evoked release. Extracellular recordings revealed prolonged presynaptic Ca2+ entry in the presence of high H2O2. Both low and high H2O2 increased presynaptic potentiation during high-frequency stimulation. Pro-oxidant Fe2+ did not affect facilitation by low doses of H2O2 but augmented the inhibition of EPCs by high H2O2, indicating involvement of hydroxyl radicals. High Mg2+ and the ROS scavenger N-acetylcysteine eliminated both the facilitatory and depressant effects of H2O2. The facilitatory effect of H2O2 was prevented by protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitors and 4?-phorbol 12-myristate, 13-acetate (PMA), an activator of PKC. PKC inhibitors but not PMA also abolished the depressant effect of H2O2. Our data suggest complex presynaptic actions of H2O2, which could serve as a fast feedback modulator of intense neuromuscular transmission. PMID:12897166

  5. Functional role of Ca2+ currents in graded and spike-mediated synaptic transmission between leech heart interneurons.

    PubMed

    Lu, J; Dalton, J F; Stokes, D R; Calabrese, R L

    1997-04-01

    We used intracellular recording and single electrode voltage-clamp techniques to explore Ca2+ currents and their relation to graded and spike-mediated synaptic transmissions in leech heart interneurons. Low-threshold Ca2+ currents (activation begins below -50 mV) consist of a rapidly inactivating component (I(CaF)) and a slowly inactivating component (I(CaS)). The apparent inactivation kinetics of I(CaF) appears to be influenced by Ca2+; both the substitution of Ca2+ (5 mM) with Ba2+ (5 mM) in the saline and the intracellular injection of the rapid Ca2+ chelator, bis-(o-aminophenoxy)-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid (BAPTA), from the recording microelectrode, significantly increase its apparent inactivation time constant. The use of saline with a high concentration of Ba2+ (37.5 mM) permitted exploration of divalent ion currents over a broader activation range, by acting as an effective charge carrier and significantly blocking outward currents. Ramp and pulse voltage-clamp protocols both reveal a rapidly activating and inactivating Ba2+ current (I(BaF)) and a less rapidly activating and slowly inactivating Ba2+ current with a broad activation range (I(BaS)). Low concentrations of Cd2+ (100-150 microM) selectively block I(BaS), without significantly diminishing I(BaF). The current that remains in Cd2+ lacks the characteristic delayed activation peak of I(BaS) and inactivates with two distinct time constants. I(BaF) appears to correspond to a combination of I(CaF) and I(CaS), i.e., to low-threshold Ca2+ currents, that can be described as T-like. I(BaS) appears to correspond to a Ca2+ current with a broad activation range, which can be described as L-like. Cd2+ (100 microM) selectively blocks spike-mediated synaptic transmission between heart interneurons without significantly interfering with low-threshold Ca2+ currents and plateau formation in or graded synaptic transmission between heart interneurons. Blockade of spike-mediated synaptic transmission between reciprocally inhibitory heart interneurons with Cd2+ (150 microM), in otherwise normal saline, prevents the expression of normal oscillations (during which activity in the two neurons consists of alternating bursts), so that the neurons fire tonically. We conclude that graded and spike-mediated synaptic transmission may be relatively independent processes in heart interneurons that are controlled predominantly by different Ca2+ currents. Moreover, spike-mediated synaptic inhibition appears to be required for normal oscillation in these neurons. PMID:9114236

  6. Different forms of decision-making involve changes in the synaptic strength of the thalamic, hippocampal, and amygdalar afferents to the medial prefrontal cortex

    PubMed Central

    López-Ramos, Juan Carlos; Guerra-Narbona, Rafael; Delgado-García, José M.

    2015-01-01

    Decision-making and other cognitive processes are assumed to take place in the prefrontal cortex. In particular, the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) is identified in rodents by its dense connectivity with the mediodorsal (MD) thalamus, and because of its inputs from other sites, such as hippocampus and amygdala (Amyg). The aim of this study was to find a putative relationship between the behavior of mice during the performance of decision-making tasks that involve penalties as a consequence of induced actions, and the strength of field postsynaptic potentials (fPSPs) evoked in the prefrontal cortex from its thalamic, hippocampal, and amygdalar afferents. Mice were chronically implanted with stimulating electrodes in the MD thalamus, the hippocampal CA1 area, or the basolateral amygdala (BLA), and with recording electrodes in the prelimbic/infralimbic area of the prefrontal cortex. Additional stimulating electrodes aimed at evoking negative reinforcements were implanted on the trigeminal nerve. FPSPs evoked at the mPFC from the three selected projecting areas during the food/shock decision-making task decreased in amplitude with shock intensity and animals’ avoidance of the reward. FPSPs collected during the operant task also decreased in amplitude (but that evoked by amygdalar stimulation) when lever presses were associated with a trigeminal shock. Results showed a general decrease in the strength of these potentials when animals inhibited their natural or learned appetitive behaviors, suggesting an inhibition of the prefrontal cortex in these conflicting situations. PMID:25688195

  7. Liprin-?2 promotes the presynaptic recruitment and turnover of RIM1/CASK to facilitate synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Spangler, Samantha A.; Schmitz, Sabine K.; Kevenaar, Josta T.; de Graaff, Esther; de Wit, Heidi; Demmers, Jeroen

    2013-01-01

    The presynaptic active zone mediates synaptic vesicle exocytosis, and modulation of its molecular composition is important for many types of synaptic plasticity. Here, we identify synaptic scaffold protein liprin-?2 as a key organizer in this process. We show that liprin-?2 levels were regulated by synaptic activity and the ubiquitin–proteasome system. Furthermore, liprin-?2 organized presynaptic ultrastructure and controlled synaptic output by regulating synaptic vesicle pool size. The presence of liprin-?2 at presynaptic sites did not depend on other active zone scaffolding proteins but was critical for recruitment of several components of the release machinery, including RIM1 and CASK. Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching showed that depletion of liprin-?2 resulted in reduced turnover of RIM1 and CASK at presynaptic terminals, suggesting that liprin-?2 promotes dynamic scaffolding for molecular complexes that facilitate synaptic vesicle release. Therefore, liprin-?2 plays an important role in maintaining active zone dynamics to modulate synaptic efficacy in response to changes in network activity. PMID:23751498

  8. Cross-synaptic synchrony and transmission of signal and noise across the mouse retina.

    PubMed

    Grimes, William N; Hoon, Mrinalini; Briggman, Kevin L; Wong, Rachel O; Rieke, Fred

    2014-01-01

    Cross-synaptic synchrony--correlations in transmitter release across output synapses of a single neuron--is a key determinant of how signal and noise traverse neural circuits. The anatomical connectivity between rod bipolar and A17 amacrine cells in the mammalian retina, specifically that neighboring A17s often receive input from many of the same rod bipolar cells, provides a rare technical opportunity to measure cross-synaptic synchrony under physiological conditions. This approach reveals that synchronization of rod bipolar cell synapses is near perfect in the dark and decreases with increasing light level. Strong synaptic synchronization in the dark minimizes intrinsic synaptic noise and allows rod bipolar cells to faithfully transmit upstream signal and noise to downstream neurons. Desynchronization in steady light lowers the sensitivity of the rod bipolar output to upstream voltage fluctuations. This work reveals how cross-synaptic synchrony shapes retinal responses to physiological light inputs and, more generally, signaling in complex neural networks. PMID:25180102

  9. Presynaptic large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels control synaptic transmission in the superficial dorsal horn of the mouse.

    PubMed

    Furukawa, Naoki; Takasusuki, Toshifumi; Fukushima, Teruyuki; Hori, Yuuichi

    2008-10-17

    Large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels (BK channels) have been suggested to play a substantial role in synaptic transmission in the spinal cord dorsal horn. In the present experiments, we attempted to clarify the physiological significance of BK channels in the modulation of synaptic transmission in the superficial dorsal horn where nociceptive information is processed. Spontaneously occurring excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) were recorded from the neurons located in the superficial dorsal horn of a mouse spinal cord slice, and the effects of iberiotoxin, a BK channel blocker, on sEPSCs were analyzed. The frequency of sEPSCs was significantly higher in the peripheral nerve-ligated neuropathic mice than in the sham-operated control mice, but the amplitude of sEPSCs was equivalent between the two groups. Iberiotoxin increased the frequency of sEPSCs in the control mice to the same level as that in the neuropathic mice without affecting the amplitude of sEPSCs. In contrast, iberiotoxin did not show any significant effects on the sEPSCs in the neuropathic mice. These findings suggest that the BK channels that are located in presynaptic terminals control synaptic transmission in the superficial dorsal horn, and that functional downregulation of BK channels accompanies the neuropathic pain induced by peripheral nerve injury. This downregulation was confirmed by real-time quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis of the BK channel alpha subunit. Taken together, our present results indicate that BK channels play crucial roles in the synaptic transmission of nociceptive information in the superficial dorsal horn. PMID:18708120

  10. Presynaptic M3 muscarinic cholinoceptors mediate inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission in area CA1 of rat hippocampus.

    PubMed

    de Vin, Filip; Choi, Sze Men; Bolognesi, Maria L; Lefebvre, Romain A

    2015-12-10

    Acetylcholine can modulate hippocampal network function through activation of both nicotinic and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs). All five mAChR subtypes have been identified in the hippocampus. Besides by their involvement in excitability of hippocampal cells, synaptic plasticity and memory, a large body of research has demonstrated the involvement of presynaptic mAChRs in the inhibition of glutamatergic transmission in the hippocampus. Over the years, however, pharmacological and molecular genetic studies have yielded quite contradictory results regarding the mAChR subtype(s) involved. In this study, multi-electrode array technology was used for the pharmacological elucidation of the subtype of mAChR mediating the depression of excitatory synaptic transmission at the SC-CA1 synapse. Using selective antagonists (VU0255035, MT7, tripinamide, MT3) and allosteric potentiators (VU 10010, VU 0238429) the involvement of M1, M2, M4, and M5 subtypes was ruled out thereby implying a major modulatory role for M3 receptors in the inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission in area CA1 of rat hippocampus. PMID:26505913

  11. Histamine H3 receptor-mediated depression of synaptic transmission in the dentate gyrus of the rat in vitro.

    PubMed Central

    Brown, R E; Reymann, K G

    1996-01-01

    1. The effects of histamine on excitatory synaptic transmission in the dentate gyrus region of rat hippocampal slices were examined using extracellular and whole-cell patch-clamp recording techniques. The GABAA receptor antagonist picrotoxin (50 microM) was present in the bath in all experiments. 2. Histamine (0.7-70 microM) reversibly depressed field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) or excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) recorded intracellularly by up to 30%. The presynaptic fibre volley and EPSC reversal potential were unaffected by histamine, as were responses following pressure ejection of the glutamate receptor agonist S-alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (S-AMPA) into the slice. 3. Histamine (7 microM) depressed equally the AMPA and N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) components of the dual-component EPSC, recorded at -40 mV. 4. In addition to depressing synaptic transmission, histamine also reduced the magnitude of paired-pulse depression (PPD; 40 ms interpulse interval) of the medial perforant path EPSC. 5. Histamine depressed medial perforant path EPSCs more strongly than lateral perforant path EPSCs. Paired-pulse facilitation (PPF; 40 ms interpulse interval) in the lateral perforant path was enhanced by histamine. 6. The effects of histamine on synaptic transmission and PPD were mimicked by the selective H3 receptor agonist R-alpha-methylhistamine (0.1-10 microM) but not by the selective H2 receptor agonist dimaprit (10 microM). Similarly, the H3 receptor antagonist thioperamide (10 microM) blocked the effect of histamine whereas the H1 antagonist mepyramine (1 microM) and the H2 receptor antagonist cimetidine (50 microM) were ineffective. 7. Histamine actions on synaptic transmission and PPD were not occluded by application of the metabotropic glutamate agonist L-2-amino-4-phosphonobutyrate (AP4). 8. The results indicate that histamine depresses synaptic transmission in the dentate gyrus by binding to histamine H3 receptors located on perforant path terminals. The mechanism by which histamine depresses transmission is independent of that used by class III metabotropic glutamate receptors. PMID:8910206

  12. GABAergic and glycinergic inhibitory synaptic transmission in the ventral cochlear nucleus studied in VGAT channelrhodopsin-2 mice

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Ruili; Manis, Paul B.

    2014-01-01

    Both glycine and GABA mediate inhibitory synaptic transmission in the ventral cochlear nucleus (VCN). In mice, the time course of glycinergic inhibition is slow in bushy cells and fast in multipolar (stellate) cells, and is proposed to contribute to the processing of temporal cues in both cell types. Much less is known about GABAergic synaptic transmission in this circuit. Electrical stimulation of the auditory nerve or the tuberculoventral pathway evokes little GABAergic synaptic current in brain slice preparations, and spontaneous GABAergic miniature synaptic currents occur infrequently. To investigate synaptic currents carried by GABA receptors in bushy and multipolar cells, we used transgenic mice in which channelrhodopsin-2 and EYFP is driven by the vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT-ChR2-EYFP) and is expressed in both GABAergic and glycinergic neurons. Light stimulation evoked action potentials in EYFP-expressing presynaptic cells, and evoked inhibitory postsynaptic potentials (IPSPs) in non-expressing bushy and planar multipolar cells. Less than 10% of the IPSP amplitude in bushy cells arose from GABAergic synapses, whereas 40% of the IPSP in multipolar neurons was GABAergic. In voltage clamp, glycinergic IPSCs were significantly slower in bushy neurons than in multipolar neurons, whereas there was little difference in the kinetics of the GABAergic IPSCs between two cell types. During prolonged stimulation, the ratio of steady state vs. peak IPSC amplitude was significantly lower for glycinergic IPSCs. Surprisingly, the reversal potentials of GABAergic IPSCs were negative to those of glycinergic IPSCs in both bushy and multipolar neurons. In the absence of receptor blockers, repetitive light stimulation was only able to effectively evoke IPSCs up to 20 Hz in both bushy and multipolar neurons. We conclude that local GABAergic release within the VCN can differentially influence bushy and multipolar cells. PMID:25104925

  13. Oxytocin and vasopressin enhance synaptic transmission in the hypoglossal motor nucleus of young rats by acting on distinct receptor types.

    PubMed

    Wrobel, L J; Reymond-Marron, I; Dupré, A; Raggenbass, M

    2010-02-01

    Hypoglossal (XII) motoneurons innervate extrinsic and intrinsic muscles of the tongue and control behaviors such as suckling, swallowing, breathing or chewing. In young rats, XII motoneurons express V1a vasopressin and oxytocin receptors. Previous studies have shown that activation of these receptors induces direct powerful excitation in XII motoneurons. In addition, by activating V1a receptors vasopressin can also enhance inhibitory synaptic transmission in the XII nucleus. In the present work, we have further characterized the effect of these neuropeptides on synaptic transmission in the XII nucleus. We have used brainstem slices of young rats and whole-cell patch clamp recordings. Oxytocin enhanced the frequency of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents by a factor of two and a half. GABAergic and glycinergic events were both affected. The oxytocin effect was mediated by uterine-type oxytocin receptors. Vasopressin and oxytocin also increased the frequency of excitatory synaptic currents, the enhancement being sixfold for the former and twofold for the latter compound. These effects were mediated by V1a and oxytocin receptors, respectively. Miniature synaptic events were unaffected by either vasopressin or oxytocin. This indicates that the peptide-dependent facilitation of synaptic currents was mediated by receptors located on the somatodendritic membrane of interneurons or premotor neurons, and not by receptors sited on axon terminals contacting XII motoneurons. Accordingly, recordings obtained from non-motoneurons located near the border of the XII nucleus showed that part of these cells possess functional V1a and oxytocin receptors whose activation leads to excitation. Some of these neurons could be antidromically activated following electrical stimulation of the XII nucleus, suggesting that they may act as premotor neurons. We propose that in young rats, oxytocin and vasopressin may function as neuromodulators in brainstem motor circuits responsible of tongue movements. PMID:19896520

  14. RasGRF2 Rac-GEF activity couples NMDA receptor calcium flux to enhanced synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Schwechter, Brandon; Rosenmund, Christian; Tolias, Kimberley F.

    2013-01-01

    Dendritic spines are the primary sites of excitatory synaptic transmission in the vertebrate brain, and the morphology of these actin-rich structures correlates with synaptic function. Here we demonstrate a unique method for inducing spine enlargement and synaptic potentiation in dispersed hippocampal neurons, and use this technique to identify a coordinator of these processes; Ras-specific guanine nucleotide releasing factor 2 (RasGRF2). RasGRF2 is a dual Ras/Rac guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) that is known to be necessary for long-term potentiation in situ. Contrary to the prevailing assumption, we find RasGRF2’s Rac-GEF activity to be essential for synaptic potentiation by using a molecular replacement strategy designed to dissociate Rac- from Ras-GEF activities. Furthermore, we demonstrate that Rac1 activity itself is sufficient to rapidly modulate postsynaptic strength by using a photoactivatable derivative of this small GTPase. Because Rac1 is a major actin regulator, our results support a model where the initial phase of long-term potentiation is driven by the cytoskeleton. PMID:23940355

  15. Optogenetic analysis of synaptic transmission in the central nervous system of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Lindsay, Theodore H; Thiele, Tod R; Lockery, Shawn R

    2011-01-01

    A reliable method for recording evoked synaptic events in identified neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans would greatly accelerate our understanding of its nervous system at the molecular, cellular and network levels. Here we describe a method for recording synaptic currents and potentials from identified neurons in nearly intact worms. Dissection and exposure of postsynaptic neurons is facilitated by microfabricated agar substrates, and ChannelRhodopsin-2 is used to stimulate presynaptic neurons. We used the method to analyse functional connectivity between a polymodal nociceptor and a command neuron that initiates a stochastic escape behaviour. We find that escape probability mirrors the time course of synaptic current in the command neuron. Moreover, synaptic input increases smoothly as stimulus strength is increased, suggesting that the overall input-output function of the connection is graded. We propose a model in which the energetic cost of escape behaviours in C. elegans is tuned to the intensity of the threat. PMID:21556060

  16. A P2X receptor-mediated nociceptive afferent pathway to lamina I of the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Chen, Meng; Gu, Jianguo G

    2005-01-01

    Of the six lamina regions in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord, lamina I is a major sensory region involved in nociceptive transmission under both physiological and pathological conditions. While P2X receptors have been shown to be involved in nociception, it remains unknown if P2X receptors are involved in nociceptive transmission to lamina I neurons. Using rat spinal cord slice preparations and patch-clamp recordings, we have demonstrated that the excitatory synaptic transmission between primary afferent fibers and lamina I neurons is significantly affected by ATP and alpha,beta-methylene-ATP. The synaptic effects of them include the increases of the frequency of both miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) and spontaneous EPSCs (sEPSCs), and decreases of evoked EPSCs (eEPSCs). These effects were blocked by pyridoxalphosphate-6-azophenyl-2', 4'-disulfonic acid (PPADS, 10 microM) and suramin (30 microM). In the neurons for which ATP and alpha,beta-methylene-ATP had effects on mEPSCs, sEPSCs and eEPSCs, capsaicin produced similar synaptic effects. Our results indicate that P2X receptors are expressed on many afferent fibers that directly synapse to lamina I neurons. Furthermore, these P2X receptor-expressing afferent fibers are capsaicin-sensitive nociceptive afferents. Thus, this study reveals a P2X receptor-mediated nociceptive afferent pathway to lamina I of the spinal cord and provides a new insight into the nociceptive functions of P2X receptors. PMID:15813988

  17. Deletion of CB2 cannabinoid receptors reduces synaptic transmission and long-term potentiation in the mouse hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Li, Yong; Kim, Jimok

    2016-03-01

    The effects of cannabinoids are mostly mediated by two types of cannabinoid receptors-CB1 receptors in the nervous system and CB2 receptors in the immune system. However, CB2 cannabinoid receptors have recently been discovered in the brain and also implicated in neurophysiological functions. The deletion of CB2 receptors in mice induces long-term memory deficits and schizophrenia-like behaviors, implying that endogenous activity of CB2 receptors might be involved in neuropsychiatric effects. Little is known about the cellular mechanisms by which physiological activation of CB2 receptors modulates neuronal functions. We aimed to determine how deletion of CB2 receptors in mice affects synaptic transmission and plasticity. Electrophysiological and morphological studies indicated that CB2 receptor knockout resulted in decreases in excitatory synaptic transmission, long-term potentiation, and dendritic spine density in the hippocampus. Our data imply that endogenous activity of CB2 receptors might contribute to the maintenance of synaptic functions and the expression of normal long-term potentiation. This study provides insights into the role of CB2 cannabinoid receptors in regulating cognitive functions such as long-term memory. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26663094

  18. Enhancement of synaptic transmission and nociceptive behaviour in HPC-1/syntaxin 1A knockout mice following peripheral nerve injury.

    PubMed

    Takasusuki, T; Fujiwara, T; Yamaguchi, S; Fukushima, T; Akagawa, K; Hori, Y

    2007-10-01

    Our previous analysis of HPC-1/syntaxin 1A knockout (KO) mice indicated that HPC-1/syntaxin 1A plays an important role in the synaptic plasticity of the hippocampus in vitro and learning behaviour in vivo. In order to gain further insights into the physiological functions of HPC-1/syntaxin 1A, we studied the changes in the plasticity of synaptic transmission in the superficial dorsal horn of the spinal cord following a peripheral nerve injury in HPC-1/syntaxin 1A KO and wild-type (WT) mice. The von Frey filament test revealed that partial ligation of the sciatic nerve caused neuropathic pain in both WT and KO mice. However, KO mice showed significant enhancement of mechanical allodynia as compared with WT mice. Tight-seal whole-cell recordings were obtained from neurons in the superficial dorsal horn of the spinal cord slices. Electrical stimulus-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs), asynchronous EPSCs (aEPSCs) in the presence of strontium, and spontaneously occurring miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs) were analysed. Prior to peripheral nerve ligation, no significant differences were observed in the properties of evoked EPSCs, aEPSCs and mEPSCs in KO and WT mice. Seven-14 days after partial ligation, the amplitude of evoked EPSCs and the frequency of aEPSCs and mEPSCs in KO mice were significantly greater than those in WT mice; however, the amplitude of aEPSCs and mEPSCs remained unchanged in both groups. Enhanced allodynia behaviour and significant enhancement of excitatory synaptic transmission following peripheral nerve ligation in KO mice suggest that HPC-1/syntaxin 1A might play a role in synaptic plasticity in the nociceptive pathway. PMID:17953616

  19. Cross-synaptic synchrony and transmission of signal and noise across the mouse retina

    PubMed Central

    Grimes, William N; Hoon, Mrinalini; Briggman, Kevin L; Wong, Rachel O; Rieke, Fred

    2014-01-01

    Cross-synaptic synchrony—correlations in transmitter release across output synapses of a single neuron—is a key determinant of how signal and noise traverse neural circuits. The anatomical connectivity between rod bipolar and A17 amacrine cells in the mammalian retina, specifically that neighboring A17s often receive input from many of the same rod bipolar cells, provides a rare technical opportunity to measure cross-synaptic synchrony under physiological conditions. This approach reveals that synchronization of rod bipolar cell synapses is near perfect in the dark and decreases with increasing light level. Strong synaptic synchronization in the dark minimizes intrinsic synaptic noise and allows rod bipolar cells to faithfully transmit upstream signal and noise to downstream neurons. Desynchronization in steady light lowers the sensitivity of the rod bipolar output to upstream voltage fluctuations. This work reveals how cross-synaptic synchrony shapes retinal responses to physiological light inputs and, more generally, signaling in complex neural networks. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.03892.001 PMID:25180102

  20. Mechanisms of hydrogen sulfide (H2S) action on synaptic transmission at the mouse neuromuscular junction.

    PubMed

    Gerasimova, E; Lebedeva, J; Yakovlev, A; Zefirov, A; Giniatullin, R; Sitdikova, G

    2015-09-10

    Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is a widespread gasotransmitter also known as a powerful neuroprotective agent in the central nervous system. However, the action of H2S in peripheral synapses is much less studied. In the current project we studied the modulatory effects of the H2S donor sodium hydrosulfide (NaHS) on synaptic transmission in the mouse neuromuscular junction using microelectrode technique. Using focal recordings of presynaptic response and evoked transmitter release we have shown that NaHS (300 ?M) increased evoked end-plate currents (EPCs) without changes of presynaptic waveforms which indicated the absence of NaHS effects on sodium and potassium currents of motor nerve endings. Using intracellular recordings it was shown that NaHS increased the frequency of miniature end-plate potentials (MEPPs) without changing their amplitudes indicating a pure presynaptic effect. Furthermore, NaHS increased the amplitude of end-plate potentials (EPPs) without influencing the resting membrane potential of muscle fibers. L-cysteine, a substrate of H2S synthesis induced, similar to NaHS, an increase of EPC amplitudes whereas inhibitors of H2S synthesis (?-cyano-L-alanine and aminooxyacetic acid) had the opposite effect. Inhibition of adenylate cyclase using MDL 12,330A hydrochloride (MDL 12,330A) or elevation of cAMP level with 8-(4-chlorophenylthio)-adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (pCPT-cAMP) completely prevented the facilitatory action of NaHS indicating involvement of the cAMP signaling cascade. The facilitatory effect of NaHS was significantly diminished when intracellular calcium (Ca(2+)) was buffered by 1,2-bis(2-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid tetrakis acetoxymethyl ester (BAPTA-AM) and ethylene glycol-bis(2-aminoethylether)-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid acetoxymethyl ester (EGTA-AM). Activation of ryanodine receptors by caffeine or ryanodine increased acetylcholine release and prevented further action of NaHS on transmitter release, likely due to an occlusion effect. Inhibition of ryanodine receptors by ryanodine or dantrolene also reduced the action of NaHS on EPC amplitudes. Our results indicate that in mammalian neuromuscular synapses endogenously produced H2S increases spontaneously and evoked quantal transmitter release from motor nerve endings without changing the response of nerve endings. The presynaptic effect of H2S appears mediated by intracellular Ca(2+) and cAMP signaling and involves presynaptic ryanodine receptors. PMID:26192092

  1. Multiphasic Modulation of Cholinergic Interneurons by Nigrostriatal Afferents

    PubMed Central

    Straub, Christoph; Tritsch, Nicolas X.; Hagan, Nellwyn A.; Gu, Chenghua

    2014-01-01

    The motor and learning functions of the striatum are critically dependent on synaptic transmission from midbrain dopamine neurons and striatal cholinergic interneurons (CINs). Both neural populations alter their discharge in vivo in response to salient sensory stimuli, albeit in opposite directions. Whereas midbrain dopamine neurons respond to salient stimuli with a brief burst of activity, CINs exhibit a distinct pause in firing that is often followed by a period of increased excitability. Although this “pause–rebound” sensory response requires dopaminergic signaling, the precise mechanisms underlying the modulation of CIN firing by dopaminergic afferents remain unclear. Here, we show that phasic activation of nigrostriatal afferents in a mouse striatal slice preparation is sufficient to evoke a pause–rebound response in CINs. Using a combination of optogenetic, electrophysiological, and pharmacological approaches, we demonstrate that synaptically released dopamine inhibits CINs through type 2 dopamine receptors, while another unidentified transmitter mediates the delayed excitation. These findings imply that, in addition to their direct effects on striatal projection neurons, midbrain dopamine neurons indirectly modulate striatal output by dynamically controlling cholinergic tone. In addition, our data suggest that phasic dopaminergic activity may directly participate in the characteristic pause–rebound sensory response that CINs exhibit in vivo in response to salient and conditioned stimuli. PMID:24948810

  2. [The role of synaptic transmission in memory and neurodegeneration processes and effects of neurotropic preparations].

    PubMed

    Voronina, T A

    2003-01-01

    Academician Zakusov, in his book Pharmacology of Central Synapses (Moscow, 1973), emphasized the central role of synaptic processes in regulation of various forms of behavior, memory, and psychotropic drug action. The paper considers most promising directions in the search for substances possessing nootropic and neuroprotector properties, many of which were developed at the Institute of Pharmacology based on the notion about synaptic processes. These investigations led to the creation of well-known drugs such as mexidole, noopept, nooglutyl, beglimin, etc. Special attention is devoted to the implementation and modern development of the ideas of Academician Zakusov. Recent data are presented on the role of neuropeptides, neurotrophins, and intracellular signaling mechanisms in synaptic plasticity, memory processes, and development of neurodegenerative states. PMID:12962041

  3. Interaction of electrically evoked activity with intrinsic dynamics of cultured cortical networks with and without functional fast GABAergic synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Baltz, Thomas; Voigt, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    The modulation of neuronal activity by means of electrical stimulation is a successful therapeutic approach for patients suffering from a variety of central nervous system disorders. Prototypic networks formed by cultured cortical neurons represent an important model system to gain general insights in the input–output relationships of neuronal tissue. These networks undergo a multitude of developmental changes during their maturation, such as the excitatory–inhibitory shift of the neurotransmitter GABA. Very few studies have addressed how the output properties to a given stimulus change with ongoing development. Here, we investigate input–output relationships of cultured cortical networks by probing cultures with and without functional GABAAergic synaptic transmission with a set of stimulation paradigms at various stages of maturation. On the cellular level, low stimulation rates (<15 Hz) led to reliable neuronal responses; higher rates were increasingly ineffective. Similarly, on the network level, lowest stimulation rates (<0.1 Hz) lead to maximal output rates at all ages, indicating a network wide refractory period after each stimulus. In cultures aged 3 weeks and older, a gradual recovery of the network excitability within tens of milliseconds was in contrast to an abrupt recovery after about 5 s in cultures with absent GABAAergic synaptic transmission. In these GABA deficient cultures evoked responses were prolonged and had multiple discharges. Furthermore, the network excitability changed periodically, with a very slow spontaneous change of the overall network activity in the minute range, which was not observed in cultures with absent GABAAergic synaptic transmission. The electrically evoked activity of cultured cortical networks, therefore, is governed by at least two potentially interacting mechanisms: A refractory period in the order of a few seconds and a very slow GABA dependent oscillation of the network excitability. PMID:26236196

  4. Shank1 regulates excitatory synaptic transmission in mouse hippocampal parvalbumin-expressing inhibitory interneurons.

    PubMed

    Mao, Wenjie; Watanabe, Takuya; Cho, Sukhee; Frost, Jeffrey L; Truong, Tina; Zhao, Xiaohu; Futai, Kensuke

    2015-04-01

    The Shank genes (SHANK1, 2, 3) encode scaffold proteins highly enriched in postsynaptic densities where they regulate synaptic structure in spiny neurons. Mutations in human Shank genes are linked to autism spectrum disorder and schizophrenia. Shank1 mutant mice exhibit intriguing cognitive phenotypes reminiscent of individuals with autism spectrum disorder. However, the molecular mechanisms leading to the human pathophysiological phenotypes and mouse behaviors have not been elucidated. In this study it is shown that Shank1 protein is highly localized in parvalbumin-expressing (PV+) fast-spiking inhibitory interneurons in the hippocampus. Importantly, a lack of Shank1 in hippocampal CA1 PV+ neurons reduced excitatory synaptic inputs and inhibitory synaptic outputs to pyramidal neurons. Furthermore, it is demonstrated that hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons in Shank1 mutant mice exhibit a shift in the excitatory and inhibitory balance (E-I balance), a pathophysiological hallmark of autism spectrum disorder. The mutant mice also exhibit lower expression of gephyrin (a scaffold component of inhibitory synapses), supporting the dysregulation of E-I balance in the hippocampus. These results suggest that Shank1 scaffold in PV+ interneurons regulates excitatory synaptic strength and participates in the maintenance of E-I balance in excitatory neurons. PMID:25816842

  5. Facilitation of Synaptic Transmission in the Anterior Cingulate Cortex in Viscerally Hypersensitive Rats

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jun; Zhang, Xu; Cao, Bing; Liu, Jin; Li, Ying

    2015-01-01

    Electrophysiological studies have shown the enhanced response of anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) to colorectal distension in viscerally hypersensitive (VH) rats, which can be observed up to 7 weeks following colonic anaphylaxis, independent of colon inflammation, suggesting a mechanism for learning and triggering of pain memories in the ACC neuronal circuitry. Activity-dependent plasticity in synaptic strength may serve as a key mechanism that reflects cortical plasticity. However, only a few reports have indicated the synaptic plasticity of ACC in vivo. In the present study, electrophysiological recording showed long-lasting potentiation of local field potential in the medial thalamus (MT)-ACC synapses in VH rats. Theta burst stimulation in the MT reliably induced long-term potentiation in the MT-ACC pathway in normal rats, but was occluded in the VH state. Further, repeated tetanization of MT increased ACC neuronal activity and visceral pain responses of normal rats, mimicking VH rats. In conclusion, we demonstrated for the first time that visceral hypersensitivity is associated with alterations of synaptic plasticity in the ACC. The ACC synaptic strengthening in chronic visceral pain may engage signal transduction pathways that are in common with those activated by electrical stimulation, and serves as an attractive cellular model of functional visceral pain. PMID:24108805

  6. Dendritic morphology, synaptic transmission, and activity of mature granule cells born following pilocarpine-induced status epilepticus in the rat

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Fei; Song, Xueying; Zhu, Dexiao; Wang, Xiaochen; Hao, Aijun; Nadler, J. Victor; Zhan, Ren-Zhi

    2015-01-01

    To understand the potential role of enhanced hippocampal neurogenesis after pilocarpine-induced status epilepticus (SE) in the development of epilepsy, we quantitatively analyzed the geometry of apical dendrites, synaptic transmission, and activation levels of normotopically distributed mature newborn granule cells in the rat. SE in male Sprague-Dawley rats (between 6 and 7 weeks old) lasting for more than 2 h was induced by an intraperitoneal injection of pilocarpine. The complexity, spine density, miniature post-synaptic currents, and activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein (Arc) expression of granule cells born 5 days after SE were studied between 10 and 17 weeks after CAG-GFP retroviral vector-mediated labeling. Mature granule cells born after SE had dendritic complexity similar to that of granule cells born naturally, but with denser mushroom-like spines in dendritic segments located in the outer molecular layer. Miniature inhibitory post-synaptic currents (mIPSCs) were similar between the controls and rats subjected to SE; however, smaller miniature excitatory post-synaptic current (mEPSC) amplitude with a trend toward less frequent was found in mature granule cells born after SE. After maturation, granule cells born after SE did not show denser Arc expression in the resting condition or 2 h after being activated by pentylenetetrazol-induced transient seizure activity than vicinal GFP-unlabeled granule cells. Thus our results suggest that normotopic granule cells born after pilocarpine-induced SE are no more active when mature than age-matched, naturally born granule cells. PMID:26500490

  7. Weak endogenous Ca2+ buffering supports sustained synaptic transmission by distinct mechanisms in rod and cone photoreceptors in salamander retina

    PubMed Central

    Van Hook, Matthew J; Thoreson, Wallace B

    2015-01-01

    Differences in synaptic transmission between rod and cone photoreceptors contribute to different response kinetics in rod- versus cone-dominated visual pathways. We examined Ca2+ dynamics in synaptic terminals of tiger salamander photoreceptors under conditions that mimicked endogenous buffering to determine the influence on kinetically and mechanistically distinct components of synaptic transmission. Measurements of ICl(Ca) confirmed that endogenous Ca2+ buffering is equivalent to ˜0.05 mmol/L EGTA in rod and cone terminals. Confocal imaging showed that with such buffering, depolarization stimulated large, spatially unconstrained [Ca2+] increases that spread throughout photoreceptor terminals. We calculated immediately releasable pool (IRP) size and release efficiency in rods by deconvolving excitatory postsynaptic currents and presynaptic Ca2+ currents. Peak efficiency of ˜0.2 vesicles/channel was similar to that of cones (˜0.3 vesicles/channel). Efficiency in both cell types was not significantly affected by using weak endogenous Ca2+ buffering. However, weak Ca2+ buffering speeded Ca2+/calmodulin (CaM)-dependent replenishment of vesicles to ribbons in both rods and cones, thereby enhancing sustained release. In rods, weak Ca2+ buffering also amplified sustained release by enhancing CICR and CICR-stimulated release of vesicles at nonribbon sites. By contrast, elevating [Ca2+] at nonribbon sites in cones with weak Ca2+ buffering and by inhibiting Ca2+ extrusion did not trigger additional release, consistent with the notion that exocytosis from cones occurs exclusively at ribbons. The presence of weak endogenous Ca2+ buffering in rods and cones facilitates slow, sustained exocytosis by enhancing Ca2+/CaM-dependent replenishment of ribbons in both rods and cones and by stimulating nonribbon release triggered by CICR in rods. PMID:26416977

  8. Weak endogenous Ca2+ buffering supports sustained synaptic transmission by distinct mechanisms in rod and cone photoreceptors in salamander retina.

    PubMed

    Van Hook, Matthew J; Thoreson, Wallace B

    2015-09-01

    Differences in synaptic transmission between rod and cone photoreceptors contribute to different response kinetics in rod- versus cone-dominated visual pathways. We examined Ca(2+) dynamics in synaptic terminals of tiger salamander photoreceptors under conditions that mimicked endogenous buffering to determine the influence on kinetically and mechanistically distinct components of synaptic transmission. Measurements of IC l(Ca) confirmed that endogenous Ca(2+) buffering is equivalent to ~0.05 mmol/L EGTA in rod and cone terminals. Confocal imaging showed that with such buffering, depolarization stimulated large, spatially unconstrained [Ca(2+)] increases that spread throughout photoreceptor terminals. We calculated immediately releasable pool (IRP) size and release efficiency in rods by deconvolving excitatory postsynaptic currents and presynaptic Ca(2+) currents. Peak efficiency of ~0.2 vesicles/channel was similar to that of cones (~0.3 vesicles/channel). Efficiency in both cell types was not significantly affected by using weak endogenous Ca(2+) buffering. However, weak Ca(2+) buffering speeded Ca(2+)/calmodulin (CaM)-dependent replenishment of vesicles to ribbons in both rods and cones, thereby enhancing sustained release. In rods, weak Ca(2+) buffering also amplified sustained release by enhancing CICR and CICR-stimulated release of vesicles at nonribbon sites. By contrast, elevating [Ca(2+)] at nonribbon sites in cones with weak Ca(2+) buffering and by inhibiting Ca(2+) extrusion did not trigger additional release, consistent with the notion that exocytosis from cones occurs exclusively at ribbons. The presence of weak endogenous Ca(2+) buffering in rods and cones facilitates slow, sustained exocytosis by enhancing Ca(2+)/CaM-dependent replenishment of ribbons in both rods and cones and by stimulating nonribbon release triggered by CICR in rods. PMID:26416977

  9. Electrical synaptic transmission in developing zebrafish: properties and molecular composition of gap junctions at a central auditory synapse

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Cong; Vanderpool, Kimberly G.; Delfiner, Matthew; Eddy, Vanessa; Lucaci, Alexander G.; Soto-Riveros, Carolina; Yasumura, Thomas; Rash, John E.

    2014-01-01

    In contrast to the knowledge of chemical synapses, little is known regarding the properties of gap junction-mediated electrical synapses in developing zebrafish, which provide a valuable model to study neural function at the systems level. Identifiable “mixed” (electrical and chemical) auditory synaptic contacts known as “club endings” on Mauthner cells (2 large reticulospinal neurons involved in tail-flip escape responses) allow exploration of electrical transmission in fish. Here, we show that paralleling the development of auditory responses, electrical synapses at these contacts become anatomically identifiable at day 3 postfertilization, reaching a number of ?6 between days 4 and 9. Furthermore, each terminal contains ?18 gap junctions, representing between 2,000 and 3,000 connexon channels formed by the teleost homologs of mammalian connexin 36. Electrophysiological recordings revealed that gap junctions at each of these contacts are functional and that synaptic transmission has properties that are comparable with those of adult fish. Thus a surprisingly small number of mixed synapses are responsible for the acquisition of auditory responses by the Mauthner cells, and these are likely sufficient to support escape behaviors at early developmental stages. PMID:25080573

  10. Lactational alcohol exposure elicits long-term immune deficits and increased noradrenergic synaptic transmission in lymphoid organs

    SciTech Connect

    Gottesfeld, Z. ); LeGrue, S.J. )

    1990-01-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that the sympathetic nervous system plays an important role in immunomodulation. While chronic alcohol consumption has been associated with immune deficits, the effects of exposure to alcohol during early postnatal life on subsequent immunocompetence and activity of sympathetic neurons in lymphoid organs are not known. This study examined the long-term effects of lactational alcohol consumption on cellular immune responses and noradrenergic synaptic transmission in lymphoid and other organs of the young adult C57BL/6 mouse. The data show that exposure to alcohol via the mother's milk was associated with long-term deficits in cellular immunity, including suppression of the local graft vs host and contact hypersensitive responses. The animals also displayed enhanced noradrenergic synaptic transmission and decreased {beta}-adrenoceptor density selectively in lymphoid organs. These neuroimmune changes are particularly striking since body weight-gain of the suckling pups was normal and their blood alcohol concentration was considerably lower than that of the alcohol-consuming dam. This suggests an increased sensitivity of the nascent immune and nervous systems during the critical period of early postnatal development.

  11. CaV2.1 voltage activated calcium channels and synaptic transmission in familial hemiplegic migraine pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Uchitel, Osvaldo D; Inchauspe, Carlota González; Urbano, Francisco J; Di Guilmi, Mariano N

    2012-01-01

    Studies on the genetic forms of epilepsy, chronic pain, and migraine caused by mutations in ion channels have given crucial insights into the molecular mechanisms, pathogenesis, and therapeutic approaches to complex neurological disorders. In this review we focus on the role of mutated CaV2.1 (i.e., P/Q-type) voltage-activated Ca2+ channels, and on the ultimate consequences that mutations causing familial hemiplegic migraine type-1 (FHM1) have in neurotransmitter release. Transgenic mice harboring the human pathogenic FHM1 mutation R192Q or S218L (KI) have been used as models to study neurotransmission at several central and peripheral synapses. FHM1 KI mice are a powerful tool to explore presynaptic regulation associated with expression of CaV2.1 channels. Mutated CaV2.1 channels activate at more hyperpolarizing potentials and lead to a gain-of-function in synaptic transmission. This gain-of-function might underlie alterations in the excitatory/ inhibitory balance of synaptic transmission, favoring a persistent state of hyperexcitability in cortical neurons that would increase the susceptibility for cortical spreading depression (CSD), a mechanism believed to initiate the attacks of migraine with aura. PMID:22074995

  12. Frequency-dependent facilitation of synaptic throughput via postsynaptic NMDA receptors in the nucleus of the solitary tract.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Huan; Peters, James H; Zhu, Mingyan; Page, Stephen J; Ritter, Robert C; Appleyard, Suzanne M

    2015-01-01

    Hindbrain NMDA receptors play important roles in reflexive and behavioural responses to vagal activation. NMDA receptors have also been shown to contribute to the synaptic responses of neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS), but their exact role remains unclear. In this study we used whole cell patch-clamping techniques in rat horizontal brain slice to investigate the role of NMDA receptors in the fidelity of transmission across solitary tract afferent-NTS neuron synapses. Results show that NMDA receptors contribute up to 70% of the charge transferred across the synapse at high (>5 Hz) firing rates, but have little contribution at lower firing frequencies. Results also show that NMDA receptors critically contribute to the fidelity of transmission across these synapses during high frequency (>5 Hz) afferent discharge rates. This novel role of NMDA receptors may explain in part how primary visceral afferents, including vagal afferents, can maintain fidelity of transmission across a broad range of firing frequencies. Neurons within the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) receive vagal afferent innervations that initiate gastrointestinal and cardiovascular reflexes. Glutamate is the fast excitatory neurotransmitter released in the NTS by vagal afferents, which arrive there via the solitary tract (ST). ST stimulation elicits excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) in NTS neurons mediated by both AMPA- and NMDA-type glutamate receptors (-Rs). Vagal afferents exhibit a high probability of vesicle release and exhibit robust frequency-dependent depression due to presynaptic vesicle depletion. Nonetheless, synaptic throughput is maintained even at high frequencies of afferent activation. Here we test the hypothesis that postsynaptic NMDA-Rs are essential in maintaining throughput across ST-NTS synapses. Using patch clamp electrophysiology in horizontal brainstem slices, we found that NMDA-Rs, including NR2B subtypes, carry up to 70% of the charge transferred across the synapse during high frequency stimulations (>5 Hz). In contrast, their relative contribution to the ST-EPSC is much less during low (<2 Hz) frequency stimulations. Afferent-driven activation of NMDA-Rs produces a sustained depolarization during high, but not low, frequencies of stimulation as a result of relatively slow decay kinetics. Hence, NMDA-Rs are critical for maintaining action potential generation at high firing rates. These results demonstrate a novel role for NMDA-Rs enabling a high probability of release synapse to maintain the fidelity of synaptic transmission during high frequency firing when glutamate release and AMPA-R responses are reduced. They also suggest why NMDA-Rs are critical for responses that may depend on high rates of afferent discharge. PMID:25281729

  13. Inhibition of calpains improves memory and synaptic transmission in a mouse model of Alzheimer disease

    PubMed Central

    Trinchese, Fabrizio; Fa’, Mauro; Liu, Shumin; Zhang, Hong; Hidalgo, Ariel; Schmidt, Stephen D.; Yamaguchi, Hisako; Yoshii, Narihiko; Mathews, Paul M.; Nixon, Ralph A.; Arancio, Ottavio

    2008-01-01

    Calpains are calcium-dependent enzymes that determine the fate of proteins through regulated proteolytic activity. Calpains have been linked to the modulation of memory and are key to the pathogenesis of Alzheimer disease (AD). When abnormally activated, calpains can also initiate degradation of proteins essential for neuronal survival. Here we show that calpain inhibition through E64, a cysteine protease inhibitor, and the highly specific calpain inhibitor BDA-410 restored normal synaptic function both in hippocampal cultures and in hippocampal slices from the APP/PS1 mouse, an animal model of AD. Calpain inhibition also improved spatial-working memory and associative fear memory in APP/PS1 mice. These beneficial effects of the calpain inhibitors were associated with restoration of normal phosphorylation levels of the transcription factor CREB and involved redistribution of the synaptic protein synapsin I. Thus, calpain inhibition may prove useful in the alleviation of memory loss in AD. PMID:18596919

  14. Regulation of Synaptic Transmission by Presynaptic CaMKII and BK channels

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Zhao-Wen

    2009-01-01

    Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) and the BK channel are enriched at the presynaptic nerve terminal, where CaMKII associates with synaptic vesicles whereas the BK channel colocalizes with voltage-sensitive Ca2+ channels (VSCCs) in the plasma membrane. Mounting evidence suggests that these two proteins play important roles in controlling neurotransmitter release. Presynaptic BK channels primarily serve as a negative regulator of neurotransmitter release. In contrast, presynaptic CaMKII either enhances or inhibits neurotransmitter release and synaptic plasticity depending on experimental/physiological conditions and properties of specific synapses. The different functions of presynaptic CaMKII appear to be mediated by distinct downstream proteins, including the BK channel. PMID:18759010

  15. Rab11 modulates ?-synuclein-mediated defects in synaptic transmission and behaviour.

    PubMed

    Breda, Carlo; Nugent, Marie L; Estranero, Jasper G; Kyriacou, Charalambos P; Outeiro, Tiago F; Steinert, Joern R; Giorgini, Flaviano

    2015-02-15

    A central pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease (PD) is the presence of proteinaceous depositions known as Lewy bodies, which consist largely of the protein ?-synuclein (aSyn). Mutations, multiplications and polymorphisms in the gene encoding aSyn are associated with familial forms of PD and susceptibility to idiopathic PD. Alterations in aSyn impair neuronal vesicle formation/transport, and likely contribute to PD pathogenesis by neuronal dysfunction and degeneration. aSyn is functionally associated with several Rab family GTPases, which perform various roles in vesicle trafficking. Here, we explore the role of the endosomal recycling factor Rab11 in the pathogenesis of PD using Drosophila models of aSyn toxicity. We find that aSyn induces synaptic potentiation at the larval neuromuscular junction by increasing synaptic vesicle (SV) size, and that these alterations are reversed by Rab11 overexpression. Furthermore, Rab11 decreases aSyn aggregation and ameliorates several aSyn-dependent phenotypes in both larvae and adult fruit flies, including locomotor activity, degeneration of dopaminergic neurons and shortened lifespan. This work emphasizes the importance of Rab11 in the modulation of SV size and consequent enhancement of synaptic function. Our results suggest that targeting Rab11 activity could have a therapeutic value in PD. PMID:25305083

  16. Depression of parallel and climbing fiber transmission to Bergmann glia is input specific and correlates with increased precision of synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Balakrishnan, Saju; Bellamy, Tomas C

    2009-03-01

    In the cerebellar cortex, Bergmann glia enclose the synapses of both parallel and climbing fiber inputs to the Purkinje neuron. The glia express Ca(2+)-permeable AMPA receptors, and the GLAST and GLT-1 classes of glutamate transporter, which are activated by glutamate released during synaptic transmission. We have previously reported that parallel fiber to Bergmann glial transmission in rat cerebellar slices exhibits a form of frequency-dependent plasticity, namely long-term depression, following repetitive stimulation at 0.1-1 Hz. Here, we report that this form of plasticity is also present at the climbing fiber input, that climbing and parallel fibers can be depressed independently, that discrete parallel fiber inputs can also be depressed independently, and that depression is maintained when a distributed array of parallel fibers are stimulated (in contrast to several forms of synaptic plasticity at the Purkinje neuron). Depression of glutamate transporter currents does not correlate with a decrease in the stringency with which Purkinje neuron synapses are isolated. Rather, postsynaptic currents in Purkinje neurons decay more rapidly and perisynaptic metabotropic glutamate receptors are activated less effectively after stimulation at 0.2 and 1 Hz, suggesting that depression arises from a decrease in extrasynaptic glutamate concentration and not from impairment of glutamate clearance in and around the synapse. These results indicate that neuron-glial plasticity is activity dependent, input specific and does not require spillover between adjacent synapses to manifest. They also argue against a withdrawal of the glial sheath from synaptic regions as the putative mechanism of plasticity. PMID:18837050

  17. Src, a Molecular Switch Governing Gain Control of Synaptic Transmission Mediated by N-methyl-D-Aspartate Receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Xian-Min; Salter, Michael W.

    1999-07-01

    The N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor is a principal subtype of glutamate receptor mediating fast excitatory transmission at synapses in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord and other regions of the central nervous system. NMDA receptors are crucial for the lasting enhancement of synaptic transmission that occurs both physiologically and in pathological conditions such as chronic pain. Over the past several years, evidence has accumulated indicating that the activity of NMDA receptors is regulated by the protein tyrosine kinase, Src. Recently it has been discovered that, by means of up-regulating NMDA receptor function, activation of Src mediates the induction of the lasting enhancement of excitatory transmission known as long-term potentiation in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. Also, Src has been found to amplify the up-regulation of NMDA receptor function that is produced by raising the intracellular concentration of sodium. Sodium concentration increases in neuronal dendrites during high levels of firing activity, which is precisely when Src becomes activated. Therefore, we propose that the boost in NMDA receptor function produced by the coincidence of activating Src and raising intracellular sodium may be important in physiological and pathophysiological enhancement of excitatory transmission in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord and elsewhere in the central nervous system.

  18. Exposure to Cocaine Regulates Inhibitory Synaptic Transmission in the Nucleus Accumbens

    PubMed Central

    Otaka, Mami; Ishikawa, Masago; Lee, Brian R.; Liu, Lei; Neumann, Peter A.; Cui, Ranji; Huang, Yanhua; Schlüter, Oliver M.; Dong, Yan

    2013-01-01

    Medium spiny neurons (MSNs) within the nucleus accumbens shell (NAc) function to gate and prioritize emotional/motivational arousals for behavioral output. The neuronal output NAc MSNs is mainly determined by the integration of membrane excitability and excitatory/inhibitory synaptic inputs. Whereas cocaine-induced alterations at excitatory synapses and membrane excitability have been extensively examined, the overall functional output of NAc MSNs following cocaine exposure still poorly defined because little is known about whether inhibitory synaptic input to these neurons is affected by cocaine. Here, our results demonstrate multidimensional alterations at inhibitory synapses in NAc neurons following cocaine self-administration in rats. Specifically, the amplitude of miniature (m) inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) was decreased after 21-d withdrawal from 5-d cocaine self-administration. Upon re-exposure to cocaine after 21-day withdrawal, whereas the amplitude of mIPSCs remained down-regulated, the frequency became significantly higher. Furthermore, the reversal potential of IPSCs, which was not significantly altered during withdrawal, became more hyperpolarized upon cocaine re-exposure. Moreover, the relative weight of excitatory and inhibitory inputs to NAc MSNs was significantly decreased after 1-d cocaine withdrawal, increased after 21-d withdrawal, and returned to the basal level upon cocaine re-exposure after 21-d withdrawal. These results, taken together with previous results showing cocaine-induced adaptations at excitatory synapses and intrinsic membrane excitability of NAc MSNs, may provide a relatively thorough picture of the functional state of NAc MSNs following cocaine exposure. PMID:23595733

  19. Crossover inhibition in the retina: circuitry that compensates for nonlinear rectifying synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Molnar, Alyosha; Hsueh, Hain-Ann; Roska, Botond; Werblin, Frank S

    2009-12-01

    In the mammalian retina, complementary ON and OFF visual streams are formed at the bipolar cell dendrites, then carried to amacrine and ganglion cells via nonlinear excitatory synapses from bipolar cells. Bipolar, amacrine and ganglion cells also receive a nonlinear inhibitory input from amacrine cells. The most common form of such inhibition crosses over from the opposite visual stream: Amacrine cells carry ON inhibition to the OFF cells and carry OFF inhibition to the ON cells ("crossover inhibition"). Although these synapses are predominantly nonlinear, linear signal processing is required for computing many properties of the visual world such as average intensity across a receptive field. Linear signaling is also necessary for maintaining the distinction between brightness and contrast. It has long been known that a subset of retinal outputs provide exactly this sort of linear representation of the world; we show here that rectifying (nonlinear) synaptic currents, when combined thorough crossover inhibition can generate this linear signaling. Using simple mathematical models we show that for a large set of cases, repeated rounds of synaptic rectification without crossover inhibition can destroy information carried by those synapses. A similar circuit motif is employed in the electronics industry to compensate for transistor nonlinearities in analog circuits. PMID:19636690

  20. Angiotensin II inhibits GABAergic synaptic transmission in dorsolateral periaqueductal gray neurons

    PubMed Central

    Xing, Jihong; Lu, Jian; Li, Jianhua

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the role of angiotensin II (Ang II) in modulating inhibitory and excitatory synaptic inputs to the dorsolateral periaqueductal gray (dl-PAG). The whole cell voltage-clamp recording was performed to examine inhibitory and excitatory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs and EPSCs) of the dl-PAG neurons. Ang II, at the concentration of 2 µM, decreased the frequency of miniature IPSCs from 0.83 ± 0.02 to 0.45 ± 0.03 Hz (P < 0.05) in 10 tested neurons. This did not significantly affect the amplitude and decay time constant. The effect of Ang II on miniature IPSCs was blocked by the prior application of Ang II AT1 receptor antagonist losartan, but not by AT2 receptor antagonist PD123319. Additionally, Ang II decreased the amplitude of evoked IPSCs from 148 ± 15 to 89 ± 7 pA (P < 0.05), and increased the paired-pulse ratio from 96 ± 5% to 125 ± 7% (P < 0.05) in eight tested neurons. In contrast, Ang II had no distinct effects on the EPSCs. Our data suggest that Ang II inhibits GABAergic synaptic inputs to the dl-PAG through activation of presynaptic AT1 receptors. PMID:19429096

  1. Prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) Inhibits Glutamatergic Synaptic Transmission in Dorsolateral Periaqueductal Gray (dl-PAG)

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Jian; Xing, Jihong; Li, Jianhua

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the role of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) in modulating neuronal activity of the dorsolateral periaqueductal gray (dl-PAG) through excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs. First, whole cell voltage-clamp recording was performed to obtain excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs and IPSCs) of the dl-PAG neurons. Our results show that PGE2 significantly decreased the frequency of miniature EPSCs and amplitude of evoked EPSCs. The effects were mimicked by sulprostone, an agonist to PGE2 EP3 receptors. In contrast, PGE2 had no distinct effect on IPSCs. In addition, spontaneous action potential of the dl-PAG neurons was recorded using whole cell current-clamp methods. PGE2 significantly attenuated the discharge rate of the dl-PAG neurons. The decreased firing activity was abolished in the presence of glutamate NMDA and non-NMDA receptors antagonists. The results from the current study provide the first evidence indicating that PGE2 inhibits the neuronal activity of the dl-PAG via selective attenuation of glutamatergic synaptic inputs, likely due to activation of presynaptic EP3 receptors. PMID:17612511

  2. DISC1 Protein Regulates γ-Aminobutyric Acid, Type A (GABAA) Receptor Trafficking and Inhibitory Synaptic Transmission in Cortical Neurons.

    PubMed

    Wei, Jing; Graziane, Nicholas M; Gu, Zhenglin; Yan, Zhen

    2015-11-13

    Association studies have suggested that Disrupted-in-Schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) confers a genetic risk at the level of endophenotypes that underlies many major mental disorders. Despite the progress in understanding the significance of DISC1 at neural development, the mechanisms underlying DISC1 regulation of synaptic functions remain elusive. Because alterations in the cortical GABA system have been strongly linked to the pathophysiology of schizophrenia, one potential target of DISC1 that is critically involved in the regulation of cognition and emotion is the GABAA receptor (GABAAR). We found that cellular knockdown of DISC1 significantly reduced GABAAR-mediated synaptic and whole-cell current, whereas overexpression of wild-type DISC1, but not the C-terminal-truncated DISC1 (a schizophrenia-related mutant), significantly increased GABAAR currents in pyramidal neurons of the prefrontal cortex. These effects were accompanied by DISC1-induced changes in surface GABAAR expression. Moreover, the regulation of GABAARs by DISC1 knockdown or overexpression depends on the microtubule motor protein kinesin 1 (KIF5). Our results suggest that DISC1 exerts an important effect on GABAergic inhibitory transmission by regulating KIF5/microtubule-based GABAAR trafficking in the cortex. The knowledge gained from this study would shed light on how DISC1 and the GABA system are linked mechanistically and how their interactions are critical for maintaining a normal mental state. PMID:26424793

  3. Modulation of hippocampus-prefrontal cortex synaptic transmission and disruption of executive cognitive functions by MK-801.

    PubMed

    Blot, Kevin; Kimura, Shin-Ichi; Bai, Jing; Kemp, Anne; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise; Giros, Bruno; Tzavara, Eleni; Otani, Satoru

    2015-05-01

    Noncompetitive N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor antagonists such as phencyclidine and MK-801 are known to impair cognitive function in rodents and humans, and serve as a useful tool to study the cellular basis for pathogenesis of schizophrenia cognitive symptoms. In the present study, we tested in rats the effect of MK-801 on ventral hippocampus (HPC)-medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) synaptic transmission and the performance in 2 cognitive tasks. We found that single injection of MK-801 (0.1 mg/kg) induced gradual and long-lasting increases of the HPC-mPFC response, which shares the common expression mechanisms with long-term potentiation (LTP). But unlike LTP, its induction required no enhanced or synchronized synaptic inputs, suggesting aberrant characteristics. In parallel, rats injected with MK-801 showed impairments of mPFC-dependent cognitive flexibility and HPC-mPFC pathway-dependent spatial working memory. The effects of MK-801 on HPC-mPFC responses and spatial working memory decayed in parallel within 24 h. Moreover, the therapeutically important subtype 2/3 metabotropic glutamate receptor agonist LY379268, which blocked MK-801-induced potentiation, ameliorated the MK-801-induced impairment of spatial working memory. Our results show a novel form of use-independent long-lasting potentiation in HPC-mPFC pathway induced by MK-801, which is associated with impairment of HPC-mPFC projection-dependent cognitive function. PMID:24304584

  4. Autism-Associated Insertion Mutation (InsG) of Shank3 Exon 21 Causes Impaired Synaptic Transmission and Behavioral Deficits.

    PubMed

    Speed, Haley E; Kouser, Mehreen; Xuan, Zhong; Reimers, Jeremy M; Ochoa, Christine F; Gupta, Natasha; Liu, Shunan; Powell, Craig M

    2015-07-01

    SHANK3 (also known as PROSAP2) is a postsynaptic scaffolding protein at excitatory synapses in which mutations and deletions have been implicated in patients with idiopathic autism, Phelan-McDermid (aka 22q13 microdeletion) syndrome, and other neuropsychiatric disorders. In this study, we have created a novel mouse model of human autism caused by the insertion of a single guanine nucleotide into exon 21 (Shank3(G)). The resulting frameshift causes a premature STOP codon and loss of major higher molecular weight Shank3 isoforms at the synapse. Shank3(G/G) mice exhibit deficits in hippocampus-dependent spatial learning, impaired motor coordination, altered response to novelty, and sensory processing deficits. At the cellular level, Shank3(G/G) mice also exhibit impaired hippocampal excitatory transmission and plasticity as well as changes in baseline NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic responses. This work identifies clear alterations in synaptic function and behavior in a novel, genetically accurate mouse model of autism mimicking an autism-associated insertion mutation. Furthermore, these findings lay the foundation for future studies aimed to validate and study region-selective and temporally selective genetic reversal studies in the Shank3(G/G) mouse that was engineered with such future experiments in mind. PMID:26134648

  5. Acute differential modulation of synaptic transmission and cell survival during exposure to pulsed and continuous radiofrequency energy.

    PubMed

    Cahana, Alex; Vutskits, Laszlo; Muller, Dominique

    2003-05-01

    Pulsed radiofrequency, in which short bursts of radiofrequency energy are applied to nervous tissue, has been recently described as an alternative technique devoid of nerve injury, a subsequent side effect of thermal lesions created by continuous radiofrequency lesioning. Yet the mechanism of this effect remains unclear. In this study we compared the acute effects of pulsed versus continuous radiofrequency energy on impulse propagation and synaptic transmission in hippocampal slice cultures and on cell survival in cortical cultures. A differential effect was observed on both systems, with pulsed radiofrequency producing a transient and continuous radiofrequency a lasting inhibition of evoked synaptic activity. In addition, although both continuous radiofrequency and pulsed radiofrequency treatments induced a distance-dependent tissue destruction under the stimulating needle, the effect was more pronounced in the continuous radiofrequency group. These findings suggest that the acute effects of pulsed radiofrequency are more reversible and less destructive in nature than the classic continuous radiofrequency mode, even in normothermal conditions. This model might help elucidate the importance of various parameters for the clinical application of radiofrequency lesioning and might open new horizons for the role of pulsed radiofrequency lesioning in cases of neuropathic pain. PMID:14622704

  6. Autism-Associated Insertion Mutation (InsG) of Shank3 Exon 21 Causes Impaired Synaptic Transmission and Behavioral Deficits

    PubMed Central

    Speed, Haley E.; Kouser, Mehreen; Xuan, Zhong; Reimers, Jeremy M.; Ochoa, Christine F.; Gupta, Natasha; Liu, Shunan

    2015-01-01

    SHANK3 (also known as PROSAP2) is a postsynaptic scaffolding protein at excitatory synapses in which mutations and deletions have been implicated in patients with idiopathic autism, Phelan–McDermid (aka 22q13 microdeletion) syndrome, and other neuropsychiatric disorders. In this study, we have created a novel mouse model of human autism caused by the insertion of a single guanine nucleotide into exon 21 (Shank3G). The resulting frameshift causes a premature STOP codon and loss of major higher molecular weight Shank3 isoforms at the synapse. Shank3G/G mice exhibit deficits in hippocampus-dependent spatial learning, impaired motor coordination, altered response to novelty, and sensory processing deficits. At the cellular level, Shank3G/G mice also exhibit impaired hippocampal excitatory transmission and plasticity as well as changes in baseline NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic responses. This work identifies clear alterations in synaptic function and behavior in a novel, genetically accurate mouse model of autism mimicking an autism-associated insertion mutation. Furthermore, these findings lay the foundation for future studies aimed to validate and study region-selective and temporally selective genetic reversal studies in the Shank3G/G mouse that was engineered with such future experiments in mind. PMID:26134648

  7. Loss of Predominant Shank3 Isoforms Results in Hippocampus-Dependent Impairments in Behavior and Synaptic Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Kouser, Mehreen; Speed, Haley E.; Dewey, Colleen M.; Reimers, Jeremy M.; Widman, Allie J.; Gupta, Natasha; Liu, Shunan; Jaramillo, Thomas C.; Bangash, Muhammad; Xiao, Bo; Worley, Paul F.

    2013-01-01

    The Shank3 gene encodes a scaffolding protein that anchors multiple elements of the postsynaptic density at the synapse. Previous attempts to delete the Shank3 gene have not resulted in a complete loss of the predominant naturally occurring Shank3 isoforms. We have now characterized a homozygous Shank3 mutation in mice that deletes exon 21, including the Homer binding domain. In the homozygous state, deletion of exon 21 results in loss of the major naturally occurring Shank3 protein bands detected by C-terminal and N-terminal antibodies, allowing us to more definitively examine the role of Shank3 in synaptic function and behavior. This loss of Shank3 leads to an increased localization of mGluR5 to both synaptosome and postsynaptic density-enriched fractions in the hippocampus. These mice exhibit a decrease in NMDA/AMPA excitatory postsynaptic current ratio in area CA1 of the hippocampus, reduced long-term potentiation in area CA1, and deficits in hippocampus-dependent spatial learning and memory. In addition, these mice also exhibit motor-coordination deficits, hypersensitivity to heat, novelty avoidance, altered locomotor response to novelty, and minimal social abnormalities. These data suggest that Shank3 isoforms are required for normal synaptic transmission/plasticity in the hippocampus, as well as hippocampus-dependent spatial learning and memory. PMID:24259569

  8. Postnatal Loss of P/Q-type Channels Confined to Rhombic Lip Derived Neurons Alters Synaptic Transmission at the Parallel Fiber to Purkinje Cell Synapse and Replicates Genomic Cacna1a Mutation Phenotype of Ataxia and Seizures in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Maejima, Takashi; Wollenweber, Patric; Teusner, Lena U. C.; Noebels, Jeffrey L.; Herlitze, Stefan; Mark, Melanie D.

    2013-01-01

    Ataxia, episodic dyskinesia and thalamocortical seizures are associated with an inherited loss of P/Q-type voltage-gated Ca2+ channel function. P/Q-type channels are widely expressed throughout the neuraxis, obscuring identification of the critical networks underlying these complex neurological disorders. We recently showed that the conditional postnatal loss of P/Q-type channels in cerebellar Purkinje cells (PCs) in mice (purky) leads to these aberrant phenotypes, suggesting that intrinsic alteration in PC output is a sufficient pathogenic factor for disease initiation. The question arises whether P/Q-type channel deletion confined to a single upstream cerebellar synapse might induce the pathophysiological abnormality of genomically inherited P/Q-type channel disorders. PCs integrate two excitatory inputs, climbing fibers from inferior olive and parallel fibers (PFs) from granule cells (GCs) that receive mossy fiber (MF) input derived from precerebellar nuclei. In this paper, we introduce a new mouse model with a selective knock-out of P/Q-type channels in rhombic lip derived neurons including PF- and MF-pathways (quirky). We found that in quirky mice, PF-PC synaptic transmission is reduced during low-frequency stimulation. Using focal light stimulation of GCs that express optogenetic light-sensitive channels, channelrhodopsin-2, we found that modulation of PC firing via GC input is reduced in quirky mice. Phenotypic analysis revealed that quirky mice display ataxia, dyskinesia and absence epilepsy. These results suggest that developmental alteration of patterned input confined to only one of the main afferent cerebellar excitatory synaptic pathways has a significant role in generating the neurological phenotype associated with the global genomic loss of P/Q-type channel function. PMID:23516282

  9. The effects of geometrical parameters on synaptic transmission: a Monte Carlo simulation study.

    PubMed Central

    Kruk, P J; Korn, H; Faber, D S

    1997-01-01

    Monte Carlo simulations of transmitter diffusion and its interactions with postsynaptic receptors have been used to study properties of quantal responses at central synapses. Fast synaptic responses characteristic of those recorded at glycinergic junctions on the teleost Mauthner cell (time to peak approximately 0.3-0.4 ms and decay time constant approximately 3-6 ms) served as the initial reference, and smaller contacts with fewer postsynaptic receptors were also modeled. Consistent with experimental findings, diffusion, simulated using a random walk algorithm and assuming a diffusion coefficient of 0.5-1.0 x 10(-5) cm2 s(-1), was sufficiently fast to account for transmitter removal from the synaptic cleft. Transmitter-receptor interactions were modeled as a two-step binding process, with the double-bound state having opened and closed conformations. Addition of a third binding step only slightly decreased response amplitude but significantly slowed both its rising and decay phases. The model allowed us to assess the sources of response variability and the likelihood of postsynaptic saturation as functions of multiple kinetic and spatial parameters. The method of nonstationary fluctuation analysis, typically used to estimate the number of functional channels at a synapse and single channel current, proved unreliable, presumably because the receptors in the postsynaptic matrix are not uniformly exposed to the same profile of transmitter concentration. Thus, the time course of the probability of channel opening most likely varies among receptors. Finally, possible substrates for phenomena of synaptic plasticity, such as long-term potentiation, were explored, including the diameter of the contact zone, defined by the region of pre- and postsynaptic apposition, the number and distribution of the receptors, and the degree of vesicle filling. Surprisingly, response amplitude is quite sensitive to the size of the receptor-free annulus surrounding the receptor cluster, such that expansion of the contact zone could produce an appreciable increase in quantal size, normally attributed to either the presence of more receptors or the release of more transmitter molecules. Images FIGURE 1 FIGURE 3 FIGURE 9 PMID:9414202

  10. Enhanced GABAergic synaptic transmission at VLPAG neurons and potent modulation by oxycodone in a bone cancer pain model

    PubMed Central

    Takasu, Keiko; Ogawa, Koichi; Nakamura, Atsushi; Kanbara, Tomoe; Ono, Hiroko; Tomii, Takako; Morioka, Yasuhide; Hasegawa, Minoru; Shibasaki, Masahiro; Mori, Tomohisa; Suzuki, Tsutomu; Sakaguchi, Gaku

    2015-01-01

    Background and Purpose We demonstrated previously that oxycodone has potent antinociceptive effects at supraspinal sites. In this study, we investigated changes in neuronal function and antinociceptive mechanisms of oxycodone at ventrolateral periaqueductal gray (VLPAG) neurons, which are a major site of opioid action, in a femur bone cancer (FBC) model with bone cancer-related pain. Experimental Approach We characterized the supraspinal antinociceptive profiles of oxycodone and morphine on mechanical hypersensitivity in the FBC model. Based on the disinhibition mechanism underlying supraspinal opioid antinociception, the effects of oxycodone and morphine on GABAA receptor-mediated inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) in VLPAG neurons were evaluated in slices from the FBC model. Key Results The supraspinal antinociceptive effects of oxycodone, but not morphine, were abolished by blocking G protein-gated inwardly rectifying potassium1 (Kir3.1) channels. In slices from the FBC model, GABAergic synaptic transmission at VLPAG neurons was enhanced, as indicated by a leftward shift of the input–output relationship curve of evoked IPSCs, the increased paired-pulse facilitation and the enhancement of miniature IPSC frequency. Following treatment with oxycodone and morphine, IPSCs were reduced in the FBC model, and the inhibition of presynaptic GABA release by oxycodone, but not morphine was enhanced and dependent on Kir3.1 channels. Conclusion and Implications Our results demonstrate that Kir3.1 channels are important for supraspinal antinociception and presynaptic GABA release inhibition by oxycodone in the FBC model. Enhanced GABAergic synaptic transmission at VLPAG neurons in the FBC model is an important site of supraspinal antinociception by oxycodone via Kir3.1 channel activation. PMID:25521524

  11. Effects of prenatal paraquat and mancozeb exposure on amino acid synaptic transmission in developing mouse cerebellar cortex.

    PubMed

    Miranda-Contreras, Leticia; Dávila-Ovalles, Rosaura; Benítez-Díaz, Pedro; Peña-Contreras, Zulma; Palacios-Prü, Ernesto

    2005-11-01

    The goal of this study was to analyze the effects of prenatal exposure to the pesticides paraquat (PQ) and mancozeb (MZ) on the development of synaptic transmission in mouse cerebellar cortex. Pregnant NMRI mice were treated with either saline, 10 mg/kg PQ, 30 mg/kg MZ or the combination of PQ + MZ, between gestational days 12 (E12) and E20. Variation in the levels of amino acid neurotransmitters was determined by HPLC, between postnatal day 1 (P1) and P30. Motor coordination was assessed by locomotor activity evaluation of control and experimental pups at P14, P21 and P30. Significant reductions in the levels of excitatory neurotransmitters, aspartate and glutamate, were observed in PQ-, MZ- or combined PQ + MZ-exposed pups, with respect to control, during peak periods of excitatory innervation of Purkinje cells: between P2-P5 and P11-P15. However, at P30, lower aspartate contents, in contrast with increased glutamate levels, were detected in all experimental groups. During the first two postnatal weeks, delays in GABA and glycine ontogenesis were observed in PQ- and PQ + MZ-exposed pups, whereas notable decrements in GABA and glycine levels were seen in PQ + MZ-exposed animals. Decreased taurine contents were detected at P3 and P11 in PQ- and PQ + MZ-exposed mice. Pups in different experimental groups all showed hyperactivity at P14 and then exhibited reduced locomotor activity at P30. Taken together, our results indicate that prenatal exposure to either PQ or MZ or the combination of both could alter the chronology and magnitude of synaptic transmission in developing mouse cerebellar cortex. PMID:16198425

  12. Melamine Alters Glutamatergic Synaptic Transmission of CA3-CA1 Synapses Presynaptically Through Autophagy Activation in the Rat Hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hui; Wang, Hui; Xiao, Xi; Zhang, Tao

    2016-01-01

    Melamine is an industrial chemical that can cause central nervous system disorders including excitotoxicity and cognitive impairment. Its illegal use in powdered baby formula was the focus of a milk scandal in China in 2008. One of our previous studies showed that melamine impaired glutamatergic transmission in rat hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells. However, the underlying mechanism of action of melamine is unclear, and it is unknown if the CA3-CA1 pathway is directly involved. In the present study, a whole-cell patch-clamp technique was employed to investigate the effect of melamine on the hippocampal CA3-CA1 pathway in vitro. Both the evoked excitatory postsynaptic current (eEPSC) and the paired-pulse ratio (PPR) were recorded. Furthermore, we examined whether autophagy was involved in glutamatergic transmission alterations induced by melamine. Our data showed that melamine significantly increased the amplitude of eEPSCs in a dose-dependent manner. Inhibition of the N-methyl-D-aspartic acid receptor did not prevent the increase in eEPSC amplitude. In addition, the PPR was remarkably decreased by a melamine concentration of 5 × 10(-5) g/mL. It was found that autophagy could be activated by melamine and an autophagy inhibitor, 3-MA, prevented the melamine-induced increase in eEPSC amplitude. Overall, our results show that melamine presynaptically alters glutamatergic synaptic transmission of hippocampal CA3-CA1 synapses in vitro and this is likely associated with autophagy alteration. PMID:26530910

  13. Slow synaptic transmission mediated by TRPV1 channels in CA3 interneurons of the hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Eguchi, Noriomi; Hishimoto, Akitoyo; Sora, Ichiro; Mori, Masahiro

    2016-03-11

    Metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) modulate various neuronal functions in the central nervous system. Many studies reported that mGluRs have linkages to neuronal disorders such as schizophrenia and autism related disorders, indicating that mGluRs are involved in critical functions of the neuronal circuits. To study this possibility further, we recorded mGluR-induced synaptic responses in the interneurons of the CA3 stratum radiatum using rat hippocampal organotypic slice cultures. Electrical stimulation in the CA3 pyramidal cell layer evoked a slow inward current in the interneurons at a holding potential of -70mV in the presence of antagonists for AMPA/kainate receptors, NMDA receptors, GABAA receptors and GABAB receptors. The slow inward current was blocked in the absence of extracellular calcium, suggesting that this was a synaptic response. The slow excitatory postsynaptic current (EPSC) reversed near 0mV, reflecting an increase in a non-selective cationic conductance. The slow EPSC is mediated by group I mGluRs, as it was blocked by AP3, a group I mGluR antagonist. Neither a calcium chelator BAPTA nor a phospholipase C (PLC) inhibitor U73122 affected the slow EPSC. La(3+), a general TRP channel blocker or capsazepine, a selective TRPV1 channel antagonist significantly suppressed the slow EPSC. DHPG, a selective group I mGluRs agonist induced an inward current, which was suppressed by capsazepine. These results indicate that in the interneurons of the hippocampal CA3 stratum radiatum group I mGluRs activate TRPV1 channels independently of PLC and intracellular Ca(2+), resulting in the slow EPSC in the interneurons. PMID:26836139

  14. Activation of GABAB receptors causes presynaptic inhibition at synapses between muscle spindle afferents and motoneurons in the spinal cord of bullfrogs.

    PubMed

    Peng, Y Y; Frank, E

    1989-05-01

    Baclofen, a specific GABAB receptor agonist, was used to study the functional role of activation of GABAB receptors in synaptic transmission between muscle spindle afferents and motoneurons in the isolated spinal cord of bullfrogs. (+/-)-Baclofen (5 microM) reversibly reduced the amplitude of the excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) evoked by simulation of various brachial muscle nerves and recorded extracellularly from the ventral root by 47% without shortening the falling phase of the EPSP. Neither the time course nor the amplitude of the action potentials in the sensory afferents was affected. Thus, baclofen caused synaptic inhibition without reducing either the potential change occurring in the muscle sensory afferents or the motoneuronal membrane resistance. Quantal analysis, performed using a deconvolution technique, of the monosynaptic EPSPs in brachial motoneurons evoked by activity in single triceps muscle spindle afferents showed that transmission at these synapses was quantal, and baclofen lowered the quantal content without altering the quantal size. Furthermore, quantal analysis of the electrical component of these unitary EPSPs showed that it did not fluctuate in amplitude, either in normal saline or with baclofen. The inhibition produced by activation of GABAB receptors is therefore presynaptic but is not likely to be caused by conduction failures in the sensory terminals. PMID:2542476

  15. Glial cells modulate the synaptic transmission of NTS neurons sending projections to ventral medulla of Wistar rats

    PubMed Central

    Accorsi-Mendonça, Daniela; Zoccal, Daniel B; Bonagamba, Leni G H; Machado, Benedito H

    2013-01-01

    There is evidence that sympathoexcitatory and respiratory responses to chemoreflex activation involve ventrolateral medulla-projecting nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) neurons (NTS-VLM neurons) and also that ATP modulates this neurotransmission. Here, we evaluated whether or not astrocytes is the source of endogenous ATP modulating the synaptic transmission in NTS-VLM neurons. Synaptic activities of putative astrocytes or NTS-VLM neurons were recorded using whole cell patch clamp. Tractus solitarius (TS) stimulation induced TS-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (TS-eEPSCs) in NTS-VLM neurons as well in NTS putative astrocytes, which were also identified by previous labeling. Fluoracetate (FAC), an inhibitor of glial metabolism, reduced TS-eEPSCs amplitude (?85.6 ± 16 vs. ?39 ± 7.1 pA, n = 12) and sEPSCs frequency (2.8 ± 0.5 vs. 1.8 ± 0.46 Hz, n = 10) in recorded NTS-VLM neurons, indicating a gliomodulation of glutamatergic currents. To verify the involvement of endogenous ATP a purinergic antagonist was used, which reduced the TS-eEPSCs amplitude (?207 ± 50 vs. ?149 ± 50 pA, n = 6), the sEPSCs frequency (1.19 ± 0.2 vs. 0.62 ± 0.11 Hz, n = 6), and increased the paired-pulse ratio (PPR) values (?20%) in NTS-VLM neurons. Simultaneous perfusion of Pyridoxalphosphate-6-azophenyl-2?,5?-disulfonic acid (iso-PPADS) and FAC produced reduction in TS-eEPSCs similar to that observed with iso-PPADS or FAC alone, indicating that glial cells are the source of ATP released after TS stimulation. Extracellular ATP measurement showed that FAC reduced evoked and spontaneous ATP release. All together these data show that putative astrocytes are the source of endogenous ATP, which via activation of presynaptic P2X receptors, facilitates the evoked glutamate release and increases the synaptic transmission efficacy in the NTS-VLM neurons probably involved with the peripheral chemoreflex pathways. PMID:24303152

  16. Postnatal down-regulation of the GABAA receptor ?2 subunit in neocortical NG2 cells accompanies synaptic-to-extrasynaptic switch in the GABAergic transmission mode.

    PubMed

    Balia, Maddalena; Vélez-Fort, Mateo; Passlick, Stefan; Schäfer, Christoph; Audinat, Etienne; Steinhäuser, Christian; Seifert, Gerald; Angulo, María Cecilia

    2015-04-01

    NG2 cells, a main pool of glial progenitors, express ?-aminobutyric acid A (GABA(A)) receptors (GABA(A)Rs), the functional and molecular properties of which are largely unknown. We recently reported that transmission between GABAergic interneurons and NG2 cells drastically changes during development of the somatosensory cortex, switching from synaptic to extrasynaptic communication. Since synaptic and extrasynaptic GABA(A)Rs of neurons differ in their subunit composition, we hypothesize that GABA(A)Rs of NG2 cells undergo molecular changes during cortical development accompanying the switch of transmission modes. Single-cell RT-PCR and the effects of zolpidem and ?5IA on evoked GABAergic currents reveal the predominance of functional ?1- and ?5-containing GABA(A)Rs at interneuron-NG2 cell synapses in the second postnatal week, while the ?5 expression declines later in development when responses are exclusively extrasynaptic. Importantly, pharmacological and molecular analyses demonstrate that ?2, a subunit contributing to the clustering of GABA(A)Rs at postsynaptic sites in neurons, is down-regulated in NG2 cells in a cell type-specific manner in concomitance with the decline of synaptic activity and the switch of transmission mode. In keeping with the synaptic nature of ?2 in neurons, the down-regulation of this subunit is an important molecular hallmark of the change of transmission modes between interneurons and NG2 cells during development. PMID:24217990

  17. Synaptic transmission at N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors in the proximal retina of the mudpuppy.

    PubMed Central

    Lukasiewicz, P D; McReynolds, J S

    1985-01-01

    The effects of excitatory amino acid analogues and antagonists on retinal ganglion cells were studied using intracellular recording in the superfused mudpuppy eyecup preparation. Aspartate, glutamate, quisqualate (QA), kainate (KA) and N-methylaspartate (NMA) caused depolarization and decreased input resistance in all classes of ganglion cells. The order of sensitivity was QA greater than or equal to KA greater than NMA greater than aspartate greater than or equal to glutamate. All of these agonists were effective when transmitter release was blocked with 4 mM-Co2+ or Mn2+, indicating that they acted at receptor sites on the ganglion cells. At a concentration of 250 microM, 2-amino-5-phosphonovalerate (APV) blocked the responses of all ganglion cells to NMA, but not to QA or KA, indicating that NMA acts at different receptor sites from QA or KA. Responses to bath-applied aspartate and glutamate were reduced slightly or not at all in the presence of APV, indicating that they were acting mainly at non-NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate) receptors. In all ganglion cells 250 microM-APV strongly suppressed the sustained responses driven by the 'on'-pathway but not those driven by the 'off'-pathway. In most on-off ganglion cells the transient excitatory responses at 'light on' and 'light off' were not reduced by 500 microM-APV. APV-resistant transient excitatory responses were also present in some on-centre ganglion cells. APV did not block the transient inhibitory responses in any class of ganglion cells. At concentrations which blocked the sustained responses of ganglion cells, APV did not affect the sustained responses of bipolar cells, indicating that it acted at sites which were post-synaptic to bipolar cells. The simplest interpretation of these results is that the transmitter released by depolarizing bipolar cells acts at NMDA receptors on sustained depolarizing amacrine and ganglion cells. It may act at non-NMDA receptors at synapses which produce transient excitatory responses, but this could not be proved. The transmitter released by hyperpolarizing bipolar cells does not appear to act at NMDA receptors on any post-synaptic cells. PMID:2865366

  18. Synaptic Vesicle Endocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Saheki, Yasunori; De Camilli, Pietro

    2012-01-01

    Neurons can sustain high rates of synaptic transmission without exhausting their supply of synaptic vesicles. This property relies on a highly efficient local endocytic recycling of synaptic vesicle membranes, which can be reused for hundreds, possibly thousands, of exo-endocytic cycles. Morphological, physiological, molecular, and genetic studies over the last four decades have provided insight into the membrane traffic reactions that govern this recycling and its regulation. These studies have shown that synaptic vesicle endocytosis capitalizes on fundamental and general endocytic mechanisms but also involves neuron-specific adaptations of such mechanisms. Thus, investigations of these processes have advanced not only the field of synaptic transmission but also, more generally, the field of endocytosis. This article summarizes current information on synaptic vesicle endocytosis with an emphasis on the underlying molecular mechanisms and with a special focus on clathrin-mediated endocytosis, the predominant pathway of synaptic vesicle protein internalization. PMID:22763746

  19. Kalirin and Trio proteins serve critical roles in excitatory synaptic transmission and LTP.

    PubMed

    Herring, Bruce E; Nicoll, Roger A

    2016-02-23

    The molecular mechanism underlying long-term potentiation (LTP) is critical for understanding learning and memory. CaMKII, a key kinase involved in LTP, is both necessary and sufficient for LTP induction. However, how CaMKII gives rise to LTP is currently unknown. Recent studies suggest that Rho GTPases are necessary for LTP. Rho GTPases are activated by Rho guanine exchange factors (RhoGEFs), but the RhoGEF(s) required for LTP also remain unknown. Here, using a combination of molecular, electrophysiological, and imaging techniques, we show that the RhoGEF Kalirin and its paralog Trio play critical and redundant roles in excitatory synapse structure and function. Furthermore, we show that CaMKII phosphorylation of Kalirin is sufficient to enhance synaptic AMPA receptor expression, and that preventing CaMKII signaling through Kalirin and Trio prevents LTP induction. Thus, our data identify Kalirin and Trio as the elusive targets of CaMKII phosphorylation responsible for AMPA receptor up-regulation during LTP. PMID:26858404

  20. Synaptic PRG-1 Modulates Excitatory Transmission via Lipid Phosphate-Mediated Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Trimbuch, Thorsten; Beed, Prateep; Vogt, Johannes; Schuchmann, Sebastian; Maier, Nikolaus; Kintscher, Michael; Breustedt, Jörg; Schuelke, Markus; Streu, Nora; Kieselmann, Olga; Brunk, Irene; Laube, Gregor; Strauss, Ulf; Battefeld, Arne; Wende, Hagen; Birchmeier, Carmen; Wiese, Stefan; Sendtner, Michael; Kawabe, Hiroshi; Kishimoto-Suga, Mika; Brose, Nils; Baumgart, Jan; Geist, Beate; Aoki, Junken; Savaskan, Nic E.; Bräuer, Anja U.; Chun, Jerold; Ninnemann, Olaf; Schmitz, Dietmar; Nitsch, Robert

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Plasticity related gene-1 (PRG-1) is a brain-specific membrane protein related to lipid phosphate phosphatases, which acts in the hippocampus specifically at the excitatory synapse terminating on glutamatergic neurons. Deletion of prg-1 in mice leads to epileptic seizures and augmentation of EPSCs, but not IPSCs. In utero electroporation of PRG-1 into deficient animals revealed that PRG-1 modulates excitation at the synaptic junction. Mutation of the extracellular domain of PRG-1 crucial for its interaction with lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) abolished the ability to prevent hyperexcitability. As LPA application in vitro induced hyperexcitability in wild-type but not in LPA2 receptor-deficient animals, and uptake of phospholipids is reduced in PRG-1-deficient neurons, we assessed PRG-1/LPA2 receptor-deficient animals, and found that the pathophysiology observed in the PRG-1-deficient mice was fully reverted. Thus, we propose PRG-1 as an important player in the modulatory control of hippocampal excitability dependent on presynaptic LPA2 receptor signaling. PMID:19766573

  1. GABAergic Synaptic Transmission Regulates Calcium Influx During Spike-Timing Dependent Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Balena, Trevor; Acton, Brooke A.; Woodin, Melanie A.

    2010-01-01

    Coincident pre- and postsynaptic activity of hippocampal neurons alters the strength of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAA)-mediated inhibition through a Ca2+-dependent regulation of cation-chloride cotransporters. This long-term synaptic modulation is termed GABAergic spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP). In the present study, we examined whether the properties of the GABAergic synapses themselves modulate the required postsynaptic Ca2+ influx during GABAergic STDP induction. To do this we first identified GABAergic synapses between cultured hippocampal neurons based on their relatively long decay time constants and their reversal potentials which lay close to the resting membrane potential. GABAergic STDP was then induced by coincidentally (±1?ms) firing the pre- and postsynaptic neurons at 5?Hz for 30?s, while postsynaptic Ca2+ was imaged with the Ca2+-sensitive fluorescent dye Fluo4-AM. In all cases, the induction of GABAergic STDP increased postsynaptic Ca2+ above resting levels. We further found that the magnitude of this increase correlated with the amplitude and polarity of the GABAergic postsynaptic current (GPSC); hyperpolarizing GPSCs reduced the Ca2+ influx in comparison to both depolarizing GPSCs, and postsynaptic neurons spiked alone. This relationship was influenced by both the driving force for Cl? and GABAA conductance (which had positive correlations with the Ca2+ influx). The spike-timing order during STDP induction did not influence the correlation between GPSC amplitude and Ca2+ influx, which is likely accounted for by the symmetrical GABAergic STDP window. PMID:21423502

  2. Sodium signals in cerebellar Purkinje neurons and Bergmann glial cells evoked by glutamatergic synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Bennay, Mustapha; Langer, Julia; Meier, Silke D; Kafitz, Karl W; Rose, Christine R

    2008-08-01

    Glial cells express specific high-affinity transporters for glutamate that play a central role in glutamate clearance at excitatory synapses in the brain. These transporters are electrogenic and are mainly energized by the electrochemical gradient for sodium. In the present study, we combined somatic whole-cell patch-clamp recordings with quantitative Na+ imaging in fine cellular branches of cerebellar Bergmann glial cells and in dendrites of Purkinje neurons to analyze intracellular Na+ signals close to activated synapses. We demonstrate that pressure application of glutamate and glutamate agonists causes local Na+ signals in the mM range. Furthermore, we analyzed the pharmacological profile, as well as the time course and spatial distribution of Na+ signals following short synaptic burst stimulation of parallel or climbing fibers. While parallel fibers stimulation resulted in local sodium transients that were largest in processes close to the stimulation pipette, climbing fibers stimulation elicited global sodium transients throughout the entire cell. Glial sodium signals amounted to several mM, were mainly caused by sodium influx following inward transport of glutamate and persisted for tens of seconds. Sodium transients in dendrites of Purkinje neurons, in contrast, were mainly caused by activation of AMPA receptors and had much faster kinetics. By reducing the driving force for sodium-dependent glutamate uptake, intracellular sodium accumulation in glial cells upon repetitive activity might provide a negative feedback mechanism, promoting the diffusion of glutamate and the activation of extrasynaptic glutamate receptors at active synapses in the cerebellum. PMID:18442095

  3. Cholinergic Synaptic Transmissions Were Altered after Single Sevoflurane Exposure in Drosophila Pupa

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Rongfa; Zhang, Tao; Kuang, Liting; Chen, Zhen; Ran, Dongzhi; Niu, Yang; Gu, Huaiyu

    2015-01-01

    Purpose. Sevoflurane, one of the most used general anesthetics, is widely used in clinical practice all over the world. Previous studies indicated that sevoflurane could induce neuron apoptosis and neural deficit causing query in the safety of anesthesia using sevoflurane. The present study was designed to investigate the effects of sevoflurane on electrophysiology in Drosophila pupa whose excitatory neurotransmitter is acetylcholine early after sevoflurane exposure using whole brain recording technique. Methods. Wide types of Drosophila (canton-s flies) were allocated to control and sevoflurane groups randomly. Sevoflurane groups (1% sevoflurane; 2% sevoflurane; 3% sevoflurane) were exposed to sevoflurane and the exposure lasted 5 hours, respectively. All flies were subjected to electrophysiology experiment using patch clamp 24 hours after exposure. Results. The results showed that, 24 hours after sevoflurane exposure, frequency but not the amplitude of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) was significantly reduced (P < 0.05). Furthermore, we explored the underlying mechanism and found that calcium currents density, which partially regulated the frequency of mEPSCs, was significantly reduced after sevoflurane exposure (P < 0.05). Conclusions. All these suggested that sevoflurane could alter the mEPSCs that are related to synaptic plasticity partially through modulating calcium channel early after sevoflurane exposure. PMID:25705662

  4. Presynaptic histamine H1 and H3 receptors modulate sympathetic ganglionic synaptic transmission in the guinea-pig.

    PubMed Central

    Christian, E P; Weinreich, D

    1992-01-01

    1. To study the effects of histamine on the efficacy of sympathetic ganglionic synaptic transmission, extracellular recordings of the postganglionic compound action potential (CAP) and intracellular recordings of excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) elicited by preganglionic electrical stimulation were obtained from isolated guinea-pig superior cervical ganglia (SCG). 2. In different preparations, superfusion with histamine (0.1-100 microM) either potentiated or depressed the postganglionic CAP elicited by electrical stimulation of the cervical sympathetic trunk (0.2-3.0 Hz). The direction of response produced by histamine did not depend on stimulation frequency or histamine concentration; potentiation and depression both showed concentration dependence over the range of histamine concentrations tested. 3. Experiments employing a variety of histamine receptor agonists or antagonists revealed that histamine-induced potentiation of the postganglionic CAP could be attributed to histamine H1 receptor activation, and depression to H3 receptor activation. 4. Histamine similarly potentiated or depressed the intracellularly recorded EPSP. However, these opposite effects occurred at different synapses. In agreement with the studies on the postganglionic CAP, histamine H1 antagonists prevented histamine-induced potentiation of the EPSP and H3 receptor antagonists prevented histamine-induced depression. 5. Direct quantal analyses of histamine-induced synaptic potentiation and depression were implemented to determine the pre- and postsynaptic components of these effects. Quantal size was estimated by measuring the amplitude of spontaneous miniature EPSP amplitudes. Histamine-induced potentiation and depression of the evoked EPSP were found to be accompanied by increased or decreased quantal content respectively, and unchanged quantal size, providing evidence that presynaptic mechanisms were involved in mediating both effects. 6. Some guinea-pigs were actively sensitized to ovalbumin. Subsequent exposure of the isolated SCG from these animals to the sensitizing antigen produced changes in the EPSP amplitude that correlated significantly to the response produced by exogenously applied histamine at the same synapse. 7. The correspondence between the effects of specific antigen challenge and exogenous histamine on evoked EPSPs at a synapse provides evidence that endogenous histamine released during an immunological response to antigen challenge can activate histamine H1 and H3 receptors to modulate synaptic efficacy in sympathetic ganglia. PMID:1338462

  5. The effect of sevoflurane on the cognitive function of rats and its association with the inhibition of synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Deng-Xin; Jiang, Shan; Yu, Li-Na; Zhang, Feng-Jiang; Zhuang, Qing; Yan, Min

    2015-01-01

    To observe the effects of different concentrations of sevoflurane on synaptotagmin 1 (Syt1) expression, synaptic long term depression (LTD), and paired pulse depression (PPD) in the rat hippocampus as well as to investigate the association between these effects and the cognitive function of rats. A total of 24 male Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were selected and randomly divided into 3 groups: the control group (group A), which inhaled air; group B, which inhaled 0.65 minimum alveolar concentration (MAC) sevoflurane for 2 h; and group C, which inhaled 1.30 MAC sevoflurane for 2 h. The subsequent experiments were performed after one day. (1) Y maze tests were performed, and the expression of Syt1 in hippocampal tissues was detected using western blot. (2) The changes in LTD and PPD in rat hippocampal slices were examined using electrophysiological techniques. Compared to the control group, the cognitive function was decreased and Syt1 expression in the hippocampus was significantly decreased in rats in the 1.30 MAC sevoflurane inhalation group. After 60 min of low frequency stimulation, the amplitudes of population spike (PS) potentials in rat hippocampal slices were significantly decreased. After induction of PPD, the P2/P1 ratio was significantly increased. No indicators in the 0.65 MAC sevoflurane inhalation group showed any significant changes. Inhalation of high concentrations of sevoflurane significantly reduced Syt1 protein levels in the rat hippocampus, significantly inhibited the release of presynaptic neurotransmitters, and reduced the efficiency of synaptic transmission, thus causing memory impairment. PMID:26885010

  6. In vivo synaptic transmission and morphology in mouse models of Tuberous sclerosis, Fragile X syndrome, Neurofibromatosis type 1, and Costello syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Tiantian; de Kok, Laura; Willemsen, Rob; Elgersma, Ype; Borst, J. Gerard G.

    2015-01-01

    Defects in the rat sarcoma viral oncogene homolog (Ras)/extracellular-signal-regulated kinase and the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase-mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling pathways are responsible for several neurodevelopmental disorders. These disorders are an important cause for intellectual disability; additional manifestations include autism spectrum disorder, seizures, and brain malformations. Changes in synaptic function are thought to underlie the neurological conditions associated with these syndromes. We therefore studied morphology and in vivo synaptic transmission of the calyx of Held synapse, a relay synapse in the medial nucleus of the trapezoid body (MNTB) of the auditory brainstem, in mouse models of tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), Fragile X syndrome (FXS), Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), and Costello syndrome. Calyces from both Tsc1+/- and from Fmr1 knock-out (KO) mice showed increased volume and surface area compared to wild-type (WT) controls. In addition, in Fmr1 KO animals a larger fraction of calyces showed complex morphology. In MNTB principal neurons of Nf1+/- mice the average delay between EPSPs and APs was slightly smaller compared to WT controls, which could indicate an increased excitability. Otherwise, no obvious changes in synaptic transmission, or short-term plasticity were observed during juxtacellular recordings in any of the four lines. Our results in these four mutants thus indicate that abnormalities of mTOR or Ras signaling do not necessarily result in changes in in vivo synaptic transmission. PMID:26190969

  7. Carbamazepine and oxcarbazepine, but not eslicarbazepine, enhance excitatory synaptic transmission onto hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells through an antagonist action at adenosine A1 receptors.

    PubMed

    Booker, Sam A; Pires, Nuno; Cobb, Stuart; Soares-da-Silva, Patrício; Vida, Imre

    2015-06-01

    This study assessed the anticonvulsant and seizure generation effects of carbamazepine (CBZ), oxcarbazepine (OXC) and eslicarbazepine (S-Lic) in wild-type mice. Electrophysiological recordings were made to discriminate potential cellular and synaptic mechanisms underlying anti- and pro-epileptic actions. The anticonvulsant and pro-convulsant effects were evaluated in the MES, the 6-Hz and the Irwin tests. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were used to investigate the effects on fast excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in hippocampal area CA1. The safety window for CBZ, OXC and eslicarbazepine (ED50 value against the MES test and the dose that produces grade 5 convulsions in all mice), was 6.3, 6.0 and 12.5, respectively. At high concentrations the three drugs reduced synaptic transmission. CBZ and OXC enhanced excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) at low, therapeutically-relevant concentrations. These effects were associated with no change in inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) resulting in altered balance between excitation and inhibition. S-Lic had no effect on EPSC or IPSC amplitudes over the same concentration range. The CBZ mediated enhancement of EPSCs was blocked by DPCPX, a selective antagonist, and occluded by CCPA, a selective agonist of the adenosine A1 receptor. Furthermore, reduction of endogenous adenosine by application of the enzyme adenosine deaminase also abolished the CBZ- and OXC-induced increase of EPSCs, indicating that the two drugs act as antagonists at native adenosine receptors. In conclusion, CBZ and OXC possess pro-epileptic actions at clinically-relevant concentrations through the enhancement of excitatory synaptic transmission. S-Lic by comparison has no such effect on synaptic transmission, explaining its lack of seizure exacerbation. PMID:25656478

  8. Kv1 channels and neural processing in vestibular calyx afferents.

    PubMed

    Meredith, Frances L; Kirk, Matthew E; Rennie, Katherine J

    2015-01-01

    Potassium-selective ion channels are important for accurate transmission of signals from auditory and vestibular sensory end organs to their targets in the central nervous system. During different gravity conditions, astronauts experience altered input signals from the peripheral vestibular system resulting in sensorimotor dysfunction. Adaptation to altered sensory input occurs, but it is not explicitly known whether this involves synaptic modifications within the vestibular epithelia. Future investigations of such potential plasticity require a better understanding of the electrophysiological mechanisms underlying the known heterogeneity of afferent discharge under normal conditions. This study advances this understanding by examining the role of the Kv1 potassium channel family in mediating action potentials in specialized vestibular afferent calyx endings in the gerbil crista and utricle. Pharmacological agents selective for different sub-types of Kv1 channels were tested on membrane responses in whole cell recordings in the crista. Kv1 channels sensitive to ?-dendrotoxin and dendrotoxin-K were found to prevail in the central regions, whereas K(+) channels sensitive to margatoxin, which blocks Kv1.3 and 1.6 channels, were more prominent in peripheral regions. Margatoxin-sensitive currents showed voltage-dependent inactivation. Dendrotoxin-sensitive currents showed no inactivation and dampened excitability in calyces in central neuroepithelial regions. The differential distribution of Kv1 potassium channels in vestibular afferents supports their importance in accurately relaying gravitational and head movement signals through specialized lines to the central nervous system. Pharmacological modulation of specific groups of K(+) channels could help alleviate vestibular dysfunction on earth and in space. PMID:26082693

  9. Kv1 channels and neural processing in vestibular calyx afferents

    PubMed Central

    Meredith, Frances L.; Kirk, Matthew E.; Rennie, Katherine J.

    2015-01-01

    Potassium-selective ion channels are important for accurate transmission of signals from auditory and vestibular sensory end organs to their targets in the central nervous system. During different gravity conditions, astronauts experience altered input signals from the peripheral vestibular system resulting in sensorimotor dysfunction. Adaptation to altered sensory input occurs, but it is not explicitly known whether this involves synaptic modifications within the vestibular epithelia. Future investigations of such potential plasticity require a better understanding of the electrophysiological mechanisms underlying the known heterogeneity of afferent discharge under normal conditions. This study advances this understanding by examining the role of the Kv1 potassium channel family in mediating action potentials in specialized vestibular afferent calyx endings in the gerbil crista and utricle. Pharmacological agents selective for different sub-types of Kv1 channels were tested on membrane responses in whole cell recordings in the crista. Kv1 channels sensitive to ?-dendrotoxin and dendrotoxin-K were found to prevail in the central regions, whereas K+ channels sensitive to margatoxin, which blocks Kv1.3 and 1.6 channels, were more prominent in peripheral regions. Margatoxin-sensitive currents showed voltage-dependent inactivation. Dendrotoxin-sensitive currents showed no inactivation and dampened excitability in calyces in central neuroepithelial regions. The differential distribution of Kv1 potassium channels in vestibular afferents supports their importance in accurately relaying gravitational and head movement signals through specialized lines to the central nervous system. Pharmacological modulation of specific groups of K+ channels could help alleviate vestibular dysfunction on earth and in space. PMID:26082693

  10. Adenosine A2b receptors control A1 receptor-mediated inhibition of synaptic transmission in the mouse hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Gonçalves, Francisco Q; Pires, Johny; Pliassova, Anna; Beleza, Rui; Lemos, Cristina; Marques, Joana M; Rodrigues, Ricardo J; Canas, Paula M; Köfalvi, Attila; Cunha, Rodrigo A; Rial, Daniel

    2015-04-01

    Adenosine is a neuromodulator mostly acting through A1 (inhibitory) and A2A (excitatory) receptors in the brain. A2B receptors (A(2B)R) are G(s/q)--protein-coupled receptors with low expression in the brain. As A(2B)R function is largely unknown, we have now explored their role in the mouse hippocampus. We performed electrophysiological extracellular recordings in mouse hippocampal slices, and immunological analysis of nerve terminals and glutamate release in hippocampal slices and synaptosomes. Additionally, A(2B)R-knockout (A(2B)R-KO) and C57/BL6 mice were submitted to a behavioural test battery (open field, elevated plus-maze, Y-maze). The A(2B)R agonist BAY60-6583 (300 nM) decreased the paired-pulse stimulation ratio, an effect prevented by the A(2B)R antagonist MRS 1754 (200 nM) and abrogated in A(2B)R-KO mice. Accordingly, A(2B)R immunoreactivity was present in 73 ± 5% of glutamatergic nerve terminals, i.e. those immunopositive for vesicular glutamate transporters. Furthermore, BAY 60-6583 attenuated the A(1)R control of synaptic transmission, both the A(1)R inhibition caused by 2-chloroadenosine (0.1-1 ?M) and the disinhibition caused by the A(1)R antagonist DPCPX (100 nM), both effects prevented by MRS 1754 and abrogated in A(2B)R-KO mice. BAY 60-6583 decreased glutamate release in slices and also attenuated the A(1)R inhibition (CPA 100 nM). A(2B)R-KO mice displayed a modified exploratory behaviour with an increased time in the central areas of the open field, elevated plus-maze and the Y-maze and no alteration of locomotion, anxiety or working memory. We conclude that A(2B)R are present in hippocampal glutamatergic terminals where they counteract the predominant A(1)R-mediated inhibition of synaptic transmission, impacting on exploratory behaviour. PMID:25704806

  11. Vagal afferent control of opioidergic effects in rat brainstem circuits.

    PubMed

    Browning, Kirsteen N; Zheng, Zhongling; Gettys, Thomas W; Travagli, R Alberto

    2006-09-15

    We demonstrated recently that increasing the levels of cAMP allows opioids to modulate GABAergic synaptic transmission between the nucleus of the tractus solitarius (NTS) and dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV). Using a combination of electrophysiological, immunohistochemical and biochemical approaches, we provide evidence that vagal afferent fibres dampen cAMP levels within the vagal brainstem circuits via tonic activation of group II metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs). Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were made from identified neurons of the rat DMV. Following chronic vagal deafferentation, the opioid agonist methionine-enkephalin (ME) inhibited the amplitude of evoked IPSC (eIPSC) in 32 of 33 neurons, without exogenous enhancement of cAMP levels. The ME-induced inhibition was prevented by the group II mGluR-selective agonist APDC. Following perfusion with the group II mGluR-selective antagonist EGLU, ME inhibited eIPSC amplitude in brainstem slices of control rats. Immunohistochemical experiments revealed that, following vagal deafferentation, mu-opioid receptors were colocalized on GABAergic profiles apposing DMV neurons; the number of colocalized profiles was significantly decreased by pretreatment with APDC. Radioimmunoassay and Western blot analysis showed that cAMP and phosphorylated cyclic AMP response element binding protein (pCREB) levels in the dorsal vagal complex were increased following vagal deafferentation. Our data show that by tonically dampening the levels of cAMP within the GABAergic synaptic contacts, activated group II mGluRs prevent the modulation of this synapse by endogenous opioids. These data suggest that the plasticity, hence the response, of central circuits controlling the vagal motor outflow to visceral organs is modulated and finely tuned by vagal afferent fibres. PMID:16825311

  12. Intercellular K? accumulation depolarizes Type I vestibular hair cells and their associated afferent nerve calyx.

    PubMed

    Contini, D; Zampini, V; Tavazzani, E; Magistretti, J; Russo, G; Prigioni, I; Masetto, S

    2012-12-27

    Mammalian vestibular organs contain two types of sensory receptors, named Type I and Type II hair cells. While Type II hair cells are contacted by several small afferent nerve terminals, the basolateral surface of Type I hair cells is almost entirely enveloped by a single large afferent nerve terminal, called calyx. Moreover Type I, but not Type II hair cells, express a low-voltage-activated outward K(+) current, I(K,L), which is responsible for their much lower input resistance (Rm) at rest as compared to Type II hair cells. The functional meaning of I(K,L) and associated calyx is still enigmatic. By combining the patch-clamp whole-cell technique with the mouse whole crista preparation, we have recorded the current- and voltage responses of in situ hair cells. Outward K(+) current activation resulted in K(+) accumulation around Type I hair cells, since it induced a rightward shift of the K(+) reversal potential the magnitude of which depended on the amplitude and duration of K(+) current flow. Since this phenomenon was never observed for Type II hair cells, we ascribed it to the presence of a residual calyx limiting K(+) efflux from the synaptic cleft. Intercellular K(+) accumulation added a slow (?>100ms) depolarizing component to the cell voltage response. In a few cases we were able to record from the calyx and found evidence for intercellular K(+) accumulation as well. The resulting depolarization could trigger a discharge of action potentials in the afferent nerve fiber. Present results support a model where pre- and postsynaptic depolarization produced by intercellular K(+) accumulation cooperates with neurotransmitter exocytosis in sustaining afferent transmission arising from Type I hair cells. While vesicular transmission together with the low Rm of Type I hair cells appears best suited for signaling fast head movements, depolarization produced by intercellular K(+) accumulation could enhance signal transmission during slow head movements. PMID:23032932

  13. Postsynaptic mGluR5 promotes evoked AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission onto neocortical layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons during development.

    PubMed

    Loerwald, Kristofer W; Patel, Ankur B; Huber, Kimberly M; Gibson, Jay R

    2015-02-01

    Both short- and long-term roles for the group I metabotropic glutamate receptor number 5 (mGluR5) have been examined for the regulation of cortical glutamatergic synapses. However, how mGluR5 sculpts neocortical networks during development still remains unclear. Using a single cell deletion strategy, we examined how mGluR5 regulates glutamatergic synaptic pathways in neocortical layer 2/3 (L2/3) during development. Electrophysiological measurements were made in acutely prepared slices to obtain a functional understanding of the effects stemming from loss of mGluR5 in vivo. Loss of postsynaptic mGluR5 results in an increase in the frequency of action potential-independent synaptic events but, paradoxically, results in a decrease in evoked transmission in two separate synaptic pathways providing input to the same pyramidal neurons. Synaptic transmission through ?-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptors, but not N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors, is specifically decreased. In the local L2/3 pathway, the decrease in evoked transmission appears to be largely due to a decrease in cell-to-cell connectivity and not in the strength of individual cell-to-cell connections. This decrease in evoked transmission correlates with a decrease in the total dendritic length in a region of the dendritic arbor that likely receives substantial input from these two pathways, thereby suggesting a morphological correlate to functional alterations. These changes are accompanied by an increase in intrinsic membrane excitability. Our data indicate that total mGluR5 function, incorporating both short- and long-term processes, promotes the strengthening of AMPA receptor-mediated transmission in multiple neocortical pathways. PMID:25392167

  14. Prenatal Stress Enhances Excitatory Synaptic Transmission and Impairs Long-Term Potentiation in the Frontal Cortex of Adult Offspring Rats

    PubMed Central

    Sowa, Joanna; Bobula, Bartosz; Glombik, Katarzyna; Slusarczyk, Joanna; Basta-Kaim, Agnieszka; Hess, Grzegorz

    2015-01-01

    The effects of prenatal stress procedure were investigated in 3 months old male rats. Prenatally stressed rats showed depressive-like behavior in the forced swim test, including increased immobility, decreased mobility and decreased climbing. In ex vivo frontal cortex slices originating from prenatally stressed animals, the amplitude of extracellular field potentials (FPs) recorded in cortical layer II/III was larger, and the mean amplitude ratio of pharmacologically-isolated NMDA to the AMPA/kainate component of the field potential—smaller than in control preparations. Prenatal stress also resulted in a reduced magnitude of long-term potentiation (LTP). These effects were accompanied by an increase in the mean frequency, but not the mean amplitude, of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) in layer II/III pyramidal neurons. These data demonstrate that stress during pregnancy may lead not only to behavioral disturbances, but also impairs the glutamatergic transmission and long-term synaptic plasticity in the frontal cortex of the adult offspring. PMID:25749097

  15. Reduction of the Cholesterol Sensor SCAP in the Brains of Mice Causes Impaired Synaptic Transmission and Altered Cognitive Function

    PubMed Central

    Chee, Melissa J.; Maratos-Flier, Eleftheria; Kahn, C. Ronald

    2013-01-01

    The sterol sensor SCAP is a key regulator of SREBP-2, the major transcription factor controlling cholesterol synthesis. Recently, we showed that there is a global down-regulation of cholesterol synthetic genes, as well as SREBP-2, in the brains of diabetic mice, leading to a reduction of cholesterol synthesis. We now show that in mouse models of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, this is, in part, the result of a decrease of SCAP. Homozygous disruption of the Scap gene in the brains of mice causes perinatal lethality associated with microcephaly and gliosis. Mice with haploinsufficiency of Scap in the brain show a 60% reduction of SCAP protein and ?30% reduction in brain cholesterol synthesis, similar to what is observed in diabetic mice. This results in impaired synaptic transmission, as measured by decreased paired pulse facilitation and long-term potentiation, and is associated with behavioral and cognitive changes. Thus, reduction of SCAP and the consequent suppression of cholesterol synthesis in the brain may play an important role in the increased rates of cognitive decline and Alzheimer disease observed in diabetic states. PMID:23585733

  16. Altered neuronal intrinsic properties and reduced synaptic transmission of the rat's medial geniculate body in salicylate-induced tinnitus.

    PubMed

    Su, Yan-Yan; Luo, Bin; Jin, Yan; Wu, Shu-Hui; Lobarinas, Edward; Salvi, Richard J; Chen, Lin

    2012-01-01

    Sodium salicylate (NaSal), an aspirin metabolite, can cause tinnitus in animals and human subjects. To explore neural mechanisms underlying salicylate-induced tinnitus, we examined effects of NaSal on neural activities of the medial geniculate body (MGB), an auditory thalamic nucleus that provides the primary and immediate inputs to the auditory cortex, by using the whole-cell patch-clamp recording technique in MGB slices. Rats treated with NaSal (350 mg/kg) showed tinnitus-like behavior as revealed by the gap prepulse inhibition of acoustic startle (GPIAS) paradigm. NaSal (1.4 mM) decreased the membrane input resistance, hyperpolarized the resting membrane potential, suppressed current-evoked firing, changed the action potential, and depressed rebound depolarization in MGB neurons. NaSal also reduced the excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic response in the MGB evoked by stimulating the brachium of the inferior colliculus. Our results demonstrate that NaSal alters neuronal intrinsic properties and reduces the synaptic transmission of the MGB, which may cause abnormal thalamic outputs to the auditory cortex and contribute to NaSal-induced tinnitus. PMID:23071681

  17. Mutations that disrupt Ca2+-binding activity endow Doc2? with novel functional properties during synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Gaffaney, Jon D.; Xue, Renhao; Chapman, Edwin R.

    2014-01-01

    Double C2-domain protein (Doc2) is a Ca2+-binding protein implicated in asynchronous and spontaneous neurotransmitter release. Here we demonstrate that each of its C2 domains senses Ca2+; moreover, the tethered tandem C2 domains display properties distinct from the isolated domains. We confirm that overexpression of a mutant form of Doc2?, in which two acidic Ca2+ ligands in the C2A domain and two in the C2B domain have been neutralized, results in markedly enhanced asynchronous release in synaptotagmin 1–knockout neurons. Unlike wild-type (wt) Doc2?, which translocates to the plasma membrane in response to increases in [Ca2+]i, the quadruple Ca2+-ligand mutant does not bind Ca2+ but is constitutively associated with the plasma membrane; this effect is due to substitution of Ca2+ ligands in the C2A domain. When overexpressed in wt neurons, Doc2? affects only asynchronous release; in contrast, Doc2? Ca2+-ligand mutants that constitutively localize to the plasma membrane enhance both the fast and slow components of synaptic transmission by increasing the readily releasable vesicle pool size; these mutants also increase the frequency of spontaneous release events. Thus, mutations in the C2A domain of Doc2? that were intended to disrupt Ca2+ binding result in an anomalous enhancement of constitutive membrane-binding activity and endow Doc2? with novel functional properties. PMID:24356452

  18. GABAergic interneuronal loss and reduced inhibitory synaptic transmission in the hippocampal CA1 region after mild traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Almeida-Suhett, Camila P; Prager, Eric M; Pidoplichko, Volodymyr; Figueiredo, Taiza H; Marini, Ann M; Li, Zheng; Eiden, Lee E; Braga, Maria F M

    2015-11-01

    Patients that suffer mild traumatic brain injuries (mTBI) often develop cognitive impairments, including memory and learning deficits. The hippocampus shows a high susceptibility to mTBI-induced damage due to its anatomical localization and has been implicated in cognitive and neurological impairments after mTBI. However, it remains unknown whether mTBI cognitive impairments are a result of morphological and pathophysiological alterations occurring in the CA1 hippocampal region. We investigated whether mTBI induces morphological and pathophysiological alterations in the CA1 using the controlled cortical impact (CCI) model. Seven days after CCI, animals subjected to mTBI showed cognitive impairment in the passive avoidance test and deficits to long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic transmission. Deficiencies in inducing or maintaining LTP were likely due to an observed reduction in the activation of NMDA but not AMPA receptors. Significant reductions in the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous and miniature GABAA-receptor mediated inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) were also observed 7 days after CCI. Design-based stereology revealed that although the total number of neurons was unaltered, the number of GABAergic interneurons is significantly reduced in the CA1 region 7 days after CCI. Additionally, the surface expression of α1, ß2/3, and γ2 subunits of the GABAA receptor were reduced, contributing to a reduced mIPSC frequency and amplitude, respectively. Together, these results suggest that mTBI causes a significant reduction in GABAergic inhibitory transmission and deficits to NMDA receptor mediated currents in the CA1, which may contribute to changes in hippocampal excitability and subsequent cognitive impairments after mTBI. PMID:26238734

  19. Motor recovery after spinal cord injury enhanced by strengthening corticospinal synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Bunday, Karen L; Perez, Monica A

    2012-12-18

    The corticospinal tract is an important target for motor recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI) in animals and humans. Voluntary motor output depends on the efficacy of synapses between corticospinal axons and spinal motoneurons, which can be modulated by the precise timing of neuronal spikes. Using noninvasive techniques, we developed tailored protocols for precise timing of the arrival of descending and peripheral volleys at corticospinal-motoneuronal synapses of an intrinsic finger muscle in humans with chronic incomplete SCI. We found that arrival of presynaptic volleys prior to motoneuron discharge enhanced corticospinal transmission and hand voluntary motor output. The reverse order of volley arrival and sham stimulation did not affect or decreased voluntary motor output and electrophysiological outcomes. These findings are the first demonstration that spike timing-dependent plasticity of residual corticospinal-motoneuronal synapses provides a mechanism to improve motor function after SCI. Modulation of residual corticospinal-motoneuronal synapses may present a novel therapeutic target for enhancing voluntary motor output in motor disorders affecting the corticospinal tract. PMID:23200989

  20. Activity-dependent modulation of synaptic transmission in the intact human motor cortex revealed with transcranial magnetic stimulation.

    PubMed

    Bonato, Claudio; Zanette, Gianpietro; Fiaschi, Antonio; Rossini, Paolo Maria

    2002-10-01

    Activity-dependent modulation of cortical synaptic transmission is a fundamental mechanism involved in learning and memory storage. This modulation has been widely studied in in vitro brain slices and in vivo animal models. More recently, transcranial magnetic stimulation has allowed detection of activity-dependent excitability modulation occurring in the intact human primary motor cortex (MI) after execution of different kinds of motor tasks. Both increased and decreased MI excitability have been described after exercise. While increased MI excitability is generally considered direct expression of cortical synaptic plasticity, a controversy still exists as to whether decreased MI excitability reflects fatigue of central nervous system (CNS) structures or cortical neuronal reorganization taking place after exercise. Here, we extend previous findings in order to provide further support for the latter hypothesis. Abduction- adduction movements of the thumb performed for 1 min at 2 Hz frequency rate produce a 55% decrease in MI excitability of mean 30 min duration. Similar decrements in amplitude and duration of motor evoked potentials (MEPs) are not reached if the same task is performed once again during the maximal inhibition phase (10 min post-exercise) produced by a previous activation. Moreover, the same task performed at a lower (1 Hz) frequency rate produces no significant MEP changes but can transiently reverse activity-dependent depression obtained after previous 2 Hz movements. Repeated execution of the same task (2 Hz), each being performed after recovery from a previously induced MEP depression, ceases to produce an MEP decrement, suggesting adaptation in MI excitability modulation. This adaptation is long lasting and task-specific, since a different motor task (1 min circular movement of the thumb) restores activity-dependent modulation. Overall, these findings suggest that the dynamic modulation of MEPs occurring after execution of different kinds of simple motor skills reflects some form of activity-dependent, plastic neuronal reorganization instead of CNS fatigue. Possible anatomo-functional mechanisms involved in this activity-dependent modulation of MI excitability are discussed. PMID:12217969

  1. Retrograde Endocannabinoid Signaling Reduces GABAergic Synaptic Transmission to Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Farkas, Imre; Kalló, Imre; Deli, Levente; Vida, Barbara; Hrabovszky, Erik; Fekete, Csaba; Moenter, Suzanne M.; Watanabe, Masahiko; Liposits, Zsolt

    2010-01-01

    Cannabinoids suppress fertility via reducing hypothalamic GnRH output. ?-Aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptor (GABAA-R)-mediated transmission is a major input to GnRH cells that can be excitatory. We hypothesized that cannabinoids act via inhibiting GABAergic input. We performed loose-patch electrophysiological studies of acute slices from adult male GnRH-green fluorescent protein transgenic mice. Bath application of type 1 cannabinoid receptor (CB1) agonist WIN55,212 decreased GnRH neuron firing rate. This action was detectable in presence of the glutamate receptor antagonist kynurenic acid but disappeared when bicuculline was also present, indicating GABAA-R involvement. In immunocytochemical experiments, CB1-immunoreactive axons formed contacts with GnRH neurons and a subset established symmetric synapses characteristic of GABAergic neurotransmission. Functional studies were continued with whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology in presence of tetrodotoxin. WIN55,212 decreased the frequency of GABAA-R-mediated miniature postsynaptic currents (mPSCs) (reflecting spontaneous vesicle fusion), which was prevented with the CB1 antagonist AM251, indicating collectively that activation of presynaptic CB1 inhibits GABA release. AM251 alone increased mPSC frequency, providing evidence that endocannabinoids tonically inhibit GABAA-R drive onto GnRH neurons. Increased mPSC frequency was absent when diacylglycerol lipase was blocked intracellularly with tetrahydrolipstatin, showing that tonic inhibition is caused by 2-arachidonoylglycerol production of GnRH neurons. CdCl2 in extracellular solution can maintain both action potentials and spontaneous vesicle fusion. Under these conditions, when endocannabinoid-mediated blockade of spontaneous vesicle fusion was blocked with AM251, GnRH neuron firing increased, revealing an endogenous endocannabinoid brake on GnRH neuron firing. Retrograde endocannabinoid signaling may represent an important mechanism under physiological and pathological conditions whereby GnRH neurons regulate their excitatory GABAergic inputs. PMID:20926585

  2. Autism-Associated Mutations in ProSAP2/Shank3 Impair Synaptic Transmission and Neurexin–Neuroligin-Mediated Transsynaptic Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Arons, Magali H.; Thynne, Charlotte J.; Grabrucker, Andreas M.; Li, Dong; Schoen, Michael; Cheyne, Juliette E.; Boeckers, Tobias M.; Montgomery, Johanna M.

    2012-01-01

    Mutations in several postsynaptic proteins have recently been implicated in the molecular pathogenesis of autism and autism spectrum disorders (ASDs), including Neuroligins, Neurexins, and members of the ProSAP/Shank family, thereby suggesting that these genetic forms of autism may share common synaptic mechanisms. Initial studies of ASD-associated mutations in ProSAP2/Shank3 support a role for this protein in glutamate receptor function and spine morphology, but these synaptic phenotypes are not universally penetrant, indicating that other core facets of ProSAP2/Shank3 function must underlie synaptic deficits in patients with ASDs. In the present study, we have examined whether the ability of ProSAP2/Shank3 to interact with the cytoplasmic tail of Neuroligins functions to coordinate pre/postsynaptic signaling through the Neurexin–Neuroligin signaling complex in hippocampal neurons of Rattus norvegicus. Indeed, we find that synaptic levels of ProSAP2/Shank3 regulate AMPA and NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission and induce widespread changes in the levels of presynaptic and postsynaptic proteins via Neurexin–Neuroligin transsynaptic signaling. ASD-associated mutations in ProSAP2/Shank3 disrupt not only postsynaptic AMPA and NMDA receptor signaling but also interfere with the ability of ProSAP2/Shank3 to signal across the synapse to alter presynaptic structure and function. These data indicate that ASD-associated mutations in a subset of synaptic proteins may target core cellular pathways that coordinate the functional matching and maturation of excitatory synapses in the CNS. PMID:23100419

  3. Involvement of PKA and ERK pathways in ghrelin-induced long-lasting potentiation of excitatory synaptic transmission in the CA1 area of rat hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Cavalier, Mélanie; Crouzin, Nadine; Ben Sedrine, Azza; de Jesus Ferreira, Marie Celeste; Guiramand, Janique; Cohen-Solal, Catherine; Fehrentz, Jean-Alain; Martinez, Jean; Barbanel, Gérard; Vignes, Michel

    2015-10-01

    Acute effects of ghrelin on excitatory synaptic transmission were evaluated on hippocampal CA1 synapses. Ghrelin triggered an enduring enhancement of synaptic transmission independently of NMDA receptor activation and probably via postsynaptic modifications. This ghrelin-mediated potentiation resulted from the activation of GHS-R1a receptors as it was mimicked by the selective agonist JMV1843 and blocked by the selective antagonist JMV2959. This potentiation also required the activation of PKA and ERK pathways to occur as it was inhibited by KT5720 and U0126, respectively. Moreover it most probably involved Ca(2+) influxes as both ghrelin and JMV1843 elicited intracellular Ca(2+) increases, which were dependent on the presence of extracellular Ca(2+) and mediated by L-type Ca(2+) channels opening. In addition, ghrelin potentiated AMPA receptor-mediated [Ca(2+) ]i increases while decreasing NMDA receptor-mediated ones. Thus the potentiation of synaptic transmission by GHS-R1a at hippocampal CA1 excitatory synapses probably results from postsynaptic mechanisms involving PKA and ERK activation, which are producing long-lasting enhancement of AMPA receptor-mediated responses. PMID:26153524

  4. The effects of an Echinacea preparation on synaptic transmission and the firing properties of CA1 pyramidal cells in the hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Hájos, Norbert; Holderith, Noémi; Németh, Beáta; Papp, Orsolya I; Szabó, Gergely G; Zemankovics, Rita; Freund, Tamás F; Haller, József

    2012-03-01

    Traditionally, Echinacea preparations are used as antiinflammatory agents and immune-enhancers. In addition to these effects, their anxiolytic potency has been recognized recently in laboratory tests. Our aim in this study was to uncover the potential effects of an Echinacea preparation on neuronal operations in the hippocampus, a brain region that is involved in anxiety and anxiety-related behaviors. Using in vitro electrophysiological techniques, we observed that excitatory synaptic transmission in hippocampal slices was significantly suppressed by an Echinacea extract found to be effective in anxiety tests. In contrast, no change in inhibitory synaptic transmission could be detected upon application of this extract. In addition, our experiments revealed that at low concentration the Echinacea extract reduced the spiking activity of CA1 pyramidal cells, while at high concentration increased it. This latter observation was parallel to the reduction in the magnitude of the h-current-mediated voltage responses in pyramidal cells. At any concentrations, the passive membrane properties of CA1 pyramidal cells were found to be unaltered by the Echinacea extract. In summary, the Echinacea extract can significantly regulate excitatory, but not inhibitory, synaptic transmission in the hippocampus, and this action might be involved in its anxiolytic effects observed in behaviour tests. PMID:21717515

  5. Regulatory role of the cell adhesion molecule nectin-1 in GABAergic inhibitory synaptic transmission in the CA3 region of mouse hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Geng, Xiaoqi; Mandai, Kenji; Maruo, Tomohiko; Wang, Shujie; Fujiwara, Takeshi; Mizoguchi, Akira; Takai, Yoshimi; Mori, Masahiro

    2016-01-01

    Proper operation of a neural circuit relies on both excitatory and inhibitory synapses. We previously showed that cell adhesion molecules nectin-1 and nectin-3 are localized at puncta adherentia junctions of the hippocampal mossy fiber glutamatergic excitatory synapses and that they do not regulate the excitatory synaptic transmission onto the CA3 pyramidal cells. We studied here the roles of these nectins in the GABAergic inhibitory synaptic transmission onto the CA3 pyramidal cells using nectin-1-deficient and nectin-3-deficient cultured mouse hippocampal slices. In these mutant slices, the amplitudes and frequencies of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents were indistinguishable from those in the control slices. In the nectin-1-deficient slices, but not in the nectin-3-deficient slices, however, the amplitude of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs) was larger than that in the control slices, although the frequency of the mIPSCs was not different between these two groups of slices. In the dissociated culture of hippocampal neurons from the nectin-1-deficient mice, the amplitude and frequency of mIPSCs were indistinguishable from those in the control neurons. Nectin-1 was not localized at or near the GABAergic inhibitory synapses. These results indicate that nectin-1 regulates the neuronal activities in the CA3 region of the hippocampus by suppressing the GABAergic inhibitory synaptic transmission. PMID:26663531

  6. Ia-afferent input to motoneurons during shortening and lengthening muscle contractions in humans.

    PubMed

    Petersen, Nicolas T; Butler, Jane E; Carpenter, Mark G; Cresswell, Andrew G

    2007-01-01

    The central nervous system employs different strategies to execute specific motor tasks. Because afferent feedback during shortening and lengthening muscle contractions differs, the neural strategy underlying these tasks may be quite distinct. Cortical drive may be adjusted or afferent input regulated. The exact mechanisms are not clear. Here, we examine the control of synaptic transmission across the Ia synapse during shortening and lengthening muscle contractions. Subjects were instructed to maintain isolated activity in a single tibialis anterior (TA) motor unit while muscle length was varied from flexion to extension and back. At a fixed interval after a firing of the active motor unit, a single electrical stimulus was applied to the common peroneal nerve to activate Ia afferents from the TA muscle. We investigated the stimulus-induced change in firing probability of 19 individual low-threshold TA motor units during shortening and lengthening contractions. Any change in firing probability depends on both pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms. In this experiment, motoneuron firing rate was similar during both contraction types. There was no difference in the firing probability between shortening and lengthening contractions (0.23 +/- 0.03 and 0.20 +/- 0.02, respectively). We suggest that there is no contraction type-specific control of Ia input to the motoneurons during shortening and lengthening muscle contractions. Cortical adjustments may have occurred. PMID:16959913

  7. [Effects of etomidate on local synaptic transmission in substantia gelatinosa neurons of the adult rat spinal cord].

    PubMed

    Li, Zhen; Luo, Ceng; Sun, Yan-Yan; Chen, Jun

    2004-06-25

    By using blind spinal slice whole-cell patch-clamp technique, we observed the influence of etomidate (ET) on synaptic transmission in substantia gelatinosa neurons of the adult rat spinal cord. Male adult Sprague-Dawley rats (7~8 weeks old) were anaesthetized with urethane (1.2 g/kg, i.p.), and then lumbosacral laminectomy was performed. The lumbosacral spinal cord (L1~S3) was removed and placed in preoxygenated Krebs solution at 1~3 degrees C. After cutting all of the ventral and dorsal roots, the pia-arachnoid membrane was removed. The spinal cord was mounted on a vibrating microslicer and then a 500 microm thick transverse slice was cut. The slice was placed on a nylon mesh in the recording chamber, and then perfused at a rate of 15~20 ml/min with Krebs solution saturated with 95% O2 and 5% CO2, and maintained at 36+/-1 degrees C. Substantia gelatinosa neurons were identified by their location. Under a binocular microscope and with transmitted illumination, the substantia gelatinosa was clearly discernible as a relatively translucent band across the dorsal horn. The resistance of patch clamp electrodes was 8~12 Msigma. Signals were gained by using an Axopatch 200B amplifier with low-passfiltered at 5 kHz, and digitized at 333 kHz with an A/D converter. The results are as follows. (1) To see whether or not ET has any effects on the local miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSC), the holding potential was set up at -70 mV. Under such a condition extracellular superfusion was made with 1 micromol/L TTX for 2 min first, which was followed by consistent application of 500 micromol/L ET and 1 micromol/L TTX for 1 min. It was shown that ET did not influence the decay time, frequency and amplitude of mEPSC, when compared to the control. (2) To see whether or not ET has any effects on the local miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSC) mediated by GABA(A) receptor, the holding potential was set up at 0 mV. Under this condition extracellular superfusion was made with 1 micromol/L TTX and 1 micromol/L strychnine, an antagonist of glycine receptor, for 2 min, and then with consistent application of 50 micromol/L ET, 1 micromol/L TTX and 1 micromol/L strychnine for 1 min. ET prolonged the decay time of GABAergic mIPSC by 45.57+/-12.46% (P<0.05), but did not influence the frequency and amplitude of GABAergic mIPSC, when compared with the control. (3) To see whether or not ET has any effects on the local mIPSC mediated by glycine receptor, the holding potential was also set up at 0 mV, and under this condition extracellular superfusion was made with 1 mmol/L TTX and 10 mmol/L bicuculline, an antagonist also set up at 0 mV, and under this condition extracellular superfusion was made with 1 micromol/L TTX and 10 micromol/L bicuculline, an antagonist of GABA(A) receptor, for 2 min, and then with consistent application of 50 micromol/L ET, 1 micromol/L TTX and 10 micromol/L bicuculline for 1 min. ET had no effects on decay time, frequency and amplitude of glycinergic mIPSC. The above-mentioned results show that ET plays anesthetic or analgesic roles by modulating the decay time of GABAergic mIPSC, i.e. by prolonging the mean open time of GABA(A) receptors, however, ET has no direct effect on local excitatory synaptic transmission in substantia gelatinosa neurons of the adult rat spinal cord. PMID:15224160

  8. Insights into neurosensory toxicity of mercury in fish eyes stemming from tissue burdens, oxidative stress and synaptic transmission profiles.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Ricardo; Guilherme, Sofia; Brandão, Fátima; Raimundo, Joana; Santos, Maria Ana; Pacheco, Mário; Pereira, Patrícia

    2016-02-01

    This study aims to contribute to fill a knowledge gap related with Hg effects in fish eyes. As a pioneering strategy, Hg bioaccumulation in eye wall of the wild grey mullet (Liza aurata) was assessed, together with oxidative stress and synaptic transmission profiles. This approach was complemented by the characterisation of environmental contamination (both in water and sediment). Sampling was conducted in winter and summer in two sites of a Portuguese coastal lagoon (Aveiro lagoon): Largo do Laranjo (LAR) - located in an Hg contaminated/confined area; São Jacinto (SJ) - closer to the lagoon inlet and selected as reference site. Levels of total Hg (tHg), inorganic Hg (iHg) and methylmercury (MeHg) in eye wall were higher at LAR than SJ, both in winter and summer, reflecting the environmental contamination patterns. Moreover, fish caught at LAR in winter showed a significant decrease of catalase and superoxide dismutase activities, in line with the occurrence of peroxidative damage. A different spatial pattern was recorded in summer, being characterised by the increment of glutathione peroxidase and glutathione reductase activities at LAR, as well as total glutathione content, preventing the occurrence of lipid peroxidation. Also in summer, a significant decrease of acetylcholinesterase activity was recorded in fish eyes at LAR, pointed out Hg as an anticholinergic agent. Besides Hg, water salinity had probably an indirect effect on spatial and winter-summer variation patterns of AChE. Current data pointed out that Hg (in iHg and MeHg forms) could exert ocular toxicity both by the promotion of oxidative stress and by the interference with neurotransmission processes. PMID:26610197

  9. Excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission is differentially influenced by two ortho-substituted polychlorinated biphenyls in the hippocampal slice preparation

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Authors: Kyung Ho; Inan, Salim Yalcin; Berman, Robert F.; Pessah, Isaac N.

    2009-01-01

    Exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls impairs cognition and behavior in ‘children. Two environmental PCBs 2,2?3,3?4,4?5-heptachlorobiphenyl (PCB170) and 2,2?3,5?6-pentachlorobiphenyl (PCB95) were examined in vitro for influences on synaptic transmission in rat hippocampal slices. Field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) were recorded in the CA1 region using a multi-electrode array. Perfusion with PCB170 (10 nM) had no effect on fEPSP slope relative to baseline period, whereas (100 nM) initially enhanced then depressed fEPSP slope. Perfusion of PCB95 (10 or 100 nM) persistently enhanced fEPSP slope >200%, an effect that could be inhibited by dantrolene, a drug that attenuates ryanodine receptor signaling. Perfusion with picrotoxin (PTX) to block GABA neurotransmission resulted in a modest increase in fEPSP slope, whereas PTX+PCB170 (1–100 nM) persistently enhanced fEPSP slope in a dose dependent manner. fEPSP slope reached >250% of baseline period in the presence of PTX+100 nM PCB170, conditions that evoked marked epileptiform after-potential discharges. PCB95 and PCB170 were found to differentially influence the Ca2+-dependence of [3H]ryanodine-binding to hippocampal ryanodine receptors. Non-coplanar PCB congeners can differentially alter neurotransmission in a manner suggesting they can elicit imbalances between inhibitory and excitatory circuits within the hippocampus. Differential sensitization of ryanodine receptors by Ca2+ appears to mediate, at least in part, hippocampal excitotoxicity by non-coplanar PCBs. PMID:19289137

  10. Presynaptic plasma membrane Ca2+ ATPase isoform 2a regulates excitatory synaptic transmission in rat hippocampal CA3.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Thomas P; Filoteo, Adelaida G; Knopfel, Thomas; Empson, Ruth M

    2007-02-15

    Plasma membrane calcium ATPase isoforms (PMCAs) are expressed in a wide variety of tissues where cell-specific expression provides ample opportunity for functional diversity amongst these transporters. The PMCAs use energy derived from ATP to extrude submicromolar concentrations of intracellular Ca2+ ([Ca2+]i) out of the cell. Their high affinity for Ca2+ and the speed with which they remove [Ca2+]i depends upon splicing at their carboxy (C)-terminal site. Here we provide biochemical and functional evidence that a brain-specific, C-terminal truncated and therefore fast variant of PMCA2, PMCA2a, has a role at hippocampal CA3 synapses. PMCA2a was enriched in forebrain synaptosomes, and in hippocampal CA3 it colocalized with the presynaptic marker proteins synaptophysin and the vesicular glutamate transporter 1, but not with the postsynaptic density protein PSD-95. PMCA2a also did not colocalize with glutamic acid decarboxylase-65, a marker of GABA-ergic terminals, although it did localize to a small extent with parvalbumin-positive presumed inhibitory terminals. Pharmacological inhibition of PMCA increased the frequency but not the amplitude of mEPSCs with little effect on mIPSCs or paired-pulse depression of evoked IPSCs. However, inhibition of PMCA activity did enhance the amplitude and slowed the recovery of paired-pulse facilitation (PPF) of evoked EPSCs. These results indicated that fast PMCA2a-mediated clearance of [Ca2+]i from presynaptic excitatory terminals regulated excitatory synaptic transmission within hippocampal CA3. PMID:17170045

  11. Opioid Peptides Inhibit Excitatory But Not Inhibitory Synaptic Transmission in the Rat Dorsal Motor Nucleus of the Vagus

    PubMed Central

    Browning, Kirsteen N.; Kalyuzhny, Alexander E.; Travagli, R. Alberto

    2011-01-01

    Opioid peptides produce gastrointestinal inhibition and increase feeding when applied to the brainstem. The present studies were designed to determine the actions of opioid peptides on synaptic transmission within the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV) and the localization of ?-opioid receptors. Whole-cell recordings were made from identified gastrointestinal-projecting DMV neurons in thin brainstem slices of the rat. Electrical stimulation of the nucleus of the tractus solitarius evoked EPSCs and IPSCs. In all neurons tested, methionine (Met)-enkephalin (0.003–30 ?m) inhibited the peak amplitude of the EPSCs. The effect was prevented by naloxone (1 ?m) as well as by naloxonazine (0.2 ?m). An increase in the ratio of the evoked paired pulses indicated that the inhibition was attributable to actions at presynaptic receptors. This presynaptic inhibitory action was mimicked by [d-Ala2, N-Me-Phe4, Gly5-ol]-enkephalin (0.1 ?m) and the analgesic dipeptide kyotorphin (10 ?m) but not by cyclic[d-Pen2, d-Pen5]-enkephalin (1 ?m) and trans-3,4-dichloro-N-methyl-N-[2-(1-pyrrolidinyl)-cyclohexyl]benzeneacetamide methanesulfonate (1 ?m). In contrast, the amplitude of evoked IPSCs was not altered either by Met-enkephalin or by any of the opioid receptor-selective agonists. Immunohistochemical studies revealed that nerve terminals apposing DMV neurons showed immunoreactivity to ?-opioid receptors colocalized with glutamate immunoreactivity but not glutamic acid decarboxylase immunoreactivity. These results suggest that within the DMV, ?-opioid receptors are present on the nerve terminals of excitatory but not inhibitory inputs to GI motoneurons. Such specificity may imply that the central inhibitory action of opioid peptides on gastrointestinal function targets selected pathways. PMID:11943802

  12. Excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission is differentially influenced by two ortho-substituted polychlorinated biphenyls in the hippocampal slice preparation

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Kyung Ho; Inan, Salim Yalcin; Berman, Robert F.; Pessah, Isaac N.

    2009-06-01

    Exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls impairs cognition and behavior in children. Two environmental PCBs 2,2',3,3',4,4',5-heptachlorobiphenyl (PCB170) and 2,2',3,5',6-pentachlorobiphenyl (PCB95) were examined in vitro for influences on synaptic transmission in rat hippocampal slices. Field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) were recorded in the CA1 region using a multi-electrode array. Perfusion with PCB170 (10 nM) had no effect on fEPSP slope relative to baseline period, whereas (100 nM) initially enhanced then depressed fEPSP slope. Perfusion of PCB95 (10 or 100 nM) persistently enhanced fEPSP slope > 200%, an effect that could be inhibited by dantrolene, a drug that attenuates ryanodine receptor signaling. Perfusion with picrotoxin (PTX) to block GABA neurotransmission resulted in a modest increase in fEPSP slope, whereas PTX + PCB170 (1-100 nM) persistently enhanced fEPSP slope in a dose dependent manner. fEPSP slope reached > 250% of baseline period in the presence of PTX + 100 nM PCB170, conditions that evoked marked epileptiform after-potential discharges. PCB95 and PCB170 were found to differentially influence the Ca{sup 2+}-dependence of [{sup 3}H]ryanodine-binding to hippocampal ryanodine receptors. Non-coplanar PCB congeners can differentially alter neurotransmission in a manner suggesting they can elicit imbalances between inhibitory and excitatory circuits within the hippocampus. Differential sensitization of ryanodine receptors by Ca{sup 2+} appears to mediate, at least in part, hippocampal excitotoxicity by non-coplanar PCBs.

  13. Changes in synaptic transmission and protein expression in the brains of adult offspring after prenatal inhibition of the kynurenine pathway.

    PubMed

    Forrest, C M; Khalil, O S; Pisar, M; McNair, K; Kornisiuk, E; Snitcofsky, M; Gonzalez, N; Jerusalinsky, D; Darlington, L G; Stone, T W

    2013-12-19

    During early brain development, N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors are involved in cell migration, neuritogenesis, axon guidance and synapse formation, but the mechanisms which regulate NMDA receptor density and function remain unclear. The kynurenine pathway of tryptophan metabolism includes an agonist (quinolinic acid) and an antagonist (kynurenic acid) at NMDA receptors and we have previously shown that inhibition of the pathway using the kynurenine-3-monoxygenase inhibitor Ro61-8048 in late gestation produces rapid changes in protein expression in the embryos and effects on synaptic transmission lasting until postnatal day 21 (P21). The present study sought to determine whether any of these effects are maintained into adulthood. After prenatal injections of Ro61-8048 the litter was allowed to develop to P60 when some offspring were euthanized and the brains removed for examination. Analysis of protein expression by Western blotting revealed significantly reduced expression of the GluN2A subunit (32%) and the morphogenetic protein sonic hedgehog (31%), with a 29% increase in the expression of doublecortin, a protein associated with neurogenesis. No changes were seen in mRNA abundance using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. Neuronal excitability was normal in the CA1 region of hippocampal slices but paired-pulse stimulation revealed less inhibition at short interpulse intervals. The amount of long-term potentiation was decreased by 49% in treated pups and recovery after low-frequency stimulation was delayed. The results not only strengthen the view that basal, constitutive kynurenine metabolism is involved in normal brain development, but also show that changes induced prenatally can affect the brains of adult offspring and those changes are quite different from those seen previously at weaning (P21). Those changes may be mediated by altered expression of NMDAR subunits and sonic hedgehog. PMID:24076085

  14. [Changes in transmission efficiency in synapses of the dorsal horn of the cat spinal cord during repeated activation of cutaneous afferents].

    PubMed

    Rusakov, D A; Shugurov, O A

    1987-01-01

    Inhibition dynamics of certain components of the spinal cord potentials under low frequency stimulation of cutaneous nerves was studied in acute experiments on cats. The experimental data obtained were approximated by the theoretical curve on the assumption that the two-pool model of the transmitter storage was applicable. An increase of the mediator replenishment intensity during rhythmical stimulation has been demonstrated. The results obtained were similar to those obtained from monosynaptic reflex investigations, that demonstrates the likeness of action mechanisms for different afferent synapses. PMID:2821413

  15. Clinically relevant concentrations of ketamine mainly affect long-term potentiation rather than basal excitatory synaptic transmission and do not change paired-pulse facilitation in mouse hippocampal slices.

    PubMed

    Ribeiro, Patrícia O; Tomé, Angelo R; Silva, Henrique B; Cunha, Rodrigo A; Antunes, Luís M

    2014-04-29

    Ketamine, an analgesic/anesthetic drug, is increasingly popular in clinical practice due to its analgesic properties and importance for emergency procedures. The impact of ketamine on basal excitatory synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity are not yet fully understood. Therefore we investigated the effects of different concentrations of ketamine on basal excitatory synaptic transmission and on two forms of synaptic plasticity: paired-pulse facilitation (PPF) and long-term potentiation (LTP). Evoked field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSP) were recorded in Schaffer fiber - CA1 pyramid synapses of mouse hippocampal slices and the initial slope of the fEPSP was measured to estimate the percentage of inhibition of the basal synaptic transmission. Presynaptic volley amplitude, PPF and LTP induction and maintenance were also calculated. For basal synaptic transmission and PPF increasing concentrations of ketamine (1, 3, 10, 30, 100, 200, 300 and 600?M) were applied to each slice and for LTP individual slices were used for each concentration (3, 10, 30 or 100?M). Clinically relevant concentrations of ketamine decreased LTP in a concentration-dependent manner without changing PPF, whereas basal excitatory synaptic transmission and presynaptic volley amplitude was affected only with high concentrations of ketamine (300 and 600?M). These results allow dissociating the blockade of LTP from a reduced synaptic input in the action of clinically relevant concentrations of ketamine in the CA1 region of the mouse hippocampus. Moreover, this work shows that the effects of ketamine on LTP and on basal synaptic transmission are dependent of the concentration used. PMID:24637258

  16. Presynaptic N-type and P/Q-type Ca2+ channels mediating synaptic transmission at the calyx of Held of mice

    PubMed Central

    Ishikawa, Taro; Kaneko, Masahiro; Shin, Hee-Sup; Takahashi, Tomoyuki

    2005-01-01

    At the nerve terminal, both N- and P/Q-type Ca2+ channels mediate synaptic transmission, with their relative contribution varying between synapses and with postnatal age. To clarify functional significance of different presynaptic Ca2+ channel subtypes, we recorded N-type and P/Q-type Ca2+ currents directly from calyces of Held nerve terminals in ?1A-subunit-deficient mice and wild-type (WT) mice, respectively. The most prominent feature of P/Q-type Ca2+ currents was activity-dependent facilitation, which was absent for N-type Ca2+ currents. EPSCs mediated by P/Q-type Ca2+ currents showed less depression during high-frequency stimulation compared with those mediated by N-type Ca2+ currents. In addition, the maximal inhibition by the GABAB receptor agonist baclofen was greater for EPSCs mediated by N-type channels than for those mediated by P/Q-type channels. These results suggest that the developmental switch of presynaptic Ca2+ channels from N- to P/Q-type may serve to increase synaptic efficacy at high frequencies of activity, securing high-fidelity synaptic transmission. PMID:16037093

  17. A temperature-sensitive allele of Drosophila sesB reveals acute functions for the mitochondrial adenine nucleotide translocase in synaptic transmission and dynamin regulation.

    PubMed Central

    Rikhy, Richa; Ramaswami, Mani; Krishnan, K S

    2003-01-01

    Rapidly reversible, temperature-sensitive (ts) paralytic mutants of Drosophila have been useful in delineating immediate in vivo functions of molecules involved in synaptic transmission. Here we report isolation and characterization of orangi (org), an enhancer of shibire (shi), a ts paralytic mutant in Drosophila dynamin. org is an allele of the stress sensitive B (sesB) locus that encodes a mitochondrial adenine nucleotide translocase (ANT) and results in a unique ts paralytic behavior that is accompanied by a complete loss of synaptic transmission in the visual system. sesB(org) reduces the restrictive temperature for all shi(ts) alleles tested except for shi(ts1). This characteristic allele-specific interaction of sesB(org) with shi is shared by abnormal wing discs (awd), a gene encoding nucleoside diphosphate kinase (NDK). sesB(org) shows independent synergistic interactions, an observation that is consistent with a shared pathway by which org and awd influence shi function. Genetic and electrophysiological analyses presented here, together with the observation that the sesB(org) mutation reduces biochemically assayed ANT activity, suggest a model in which a continuous mitochondrial ANT-dependent supply of ATP is required to sustain NDK-dependent activation of presynaptic dynamin during a normal range of synaptic activity. PMID:14668379

  18. Positive alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor modulators have different impact on synaptic transmission in the thalamus and hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Xia, Yan-Fang; Kessler, Markus; Arai, Amy C

    2005-04-01

    Earlier studies showed that positive modulators of alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptors enhance synaptic responses and facilitate synaptic plasticity. Those studies focused mainly on hippocampal functions. However, AMPA receptors have regionally distinct subunit compositions and thus potencies and efficacies of modulators may vary across the brain. The present study compared the effects of CX546 [1-(1,4-benzodioxan-6-ylcarbonyl) piperidine], a benzamide-type modulator, on synaptic transmission in neurons of the reticular thalamic nucleus (RTN), which regulates the firing mode of relay cells in other thalamic nuclei, and on hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells. CX546 greatly prolonged synaptic responses in CA1 pyramidal cells, but at the same concentration it had only weak modulatory effects in RTN neurons. Effects on miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were similar to those on EPSCs in both regions, suggesting that variations in neuronal morphology and transmitter release kinetics do not account for the differences. Relay cells in the ventrobasal thalamus also exhibited weak modulatory effects that were comparable with those in RTN neurons. Regionally different effects on response duration were also observed with CX516 [BDP-12, 1-(quinoxalin-6-ylcarbonyl)piperidine], a second benzamide drug. In contrast, 100 microM cyclothiazide produced comparable synaptic enhancements in hippocampus and RTN. The regional selectivity of benzamide drugs (ampakines) may be explained, at least in part, by a lower potency at thalamic AMPA receptors, perhaps due to the prevalence of the subunits GluR3 and 4. Although regional preferences of the ampakines were modest in their extent, they may be sufficient to be of relevance when considering future therapeutic applications of such compounds. PMID:15626725

  19. Dysfunctional Astrocytic and Synaptic Regulation of Hypothalamic Glutamatergic Transmission in a Mouse Model of Early-Life Adversity: Relevance to Neurosteroids and Programming of the Stress Response

    PubMed Central

    Gunn, Benjamin G.; Cunningham, Linda; Cooper, Michelle A.; Corteen, Nicole L.; Seifi, Mohsen; Swinny, Jerome D.; Lambert, Jeremy J.

    2013-01-01

    Adverse early-life experiences, such as poor maternal care, program an abnormal stress response that may involve an altered balance between excitatory and inhibitory signals. Here, we explored how early-life stress (ELS) affects excitatory and inhibitory transmission in corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF)-expressing dorsal-medial (mpd) neurons of the neonatal mouse hypothalamus. We report that ELS associates with enhanced excitatory glutamatergic transmission that is manifested as an increased frequency of synaptic events and increased extrasynaptic conductance, with the latter associated with dysfunctional astrocytic regulation of glutamate levels. The neurosteroid 5?-pregnan-3?-ol-20-one (5?3?-THPROG) is an endogenous, positive modulator of GABAA receptors (GABAARs) that is abundant during brain development and rises rapidly during acute stress, thereby enhancing inhibition to curtail stress-induced activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical axis. In control mpd neurons, 5?3?-THPROG potently suppressed neuronal discharge, but this action was greatly compromised by prior ELS exposure. This neurosteroid insensitivity did not primarily result from perturbations of GABAergic inhibition, but rather arose functionally from the increased excitatory drive onto mpd neurons. Previous reports indicated that mice (dams) lacking the GABAAR ? subunit (?0/0) exhibit altered maternal behavior. Intriguingly, ?0/0 offspring showed some hallmarks of abnormal maternal care that were further exacerbated by ELS. Moreover, in common with ELS, mpd neurons of ?0/0 pups exhibited increased synaptic and extrasynaptic glutamatergic transmission and consequently a blunted neurosteroid suppression of neuronal firing. This study reveals that increased synaptic and tonic glutamatergic transmission may be a common maladaptation to ELS, leading to enhanced excitation of CRF-releasing neurons, and identifies neurosteroids as putative early regulators of the stress neurocircuitry. PMID:24336719

  20. Systemic dexmedetomidine augments inhibitory synaptic transmission in the superficial dorsal horn through activation of descending noradrenergic control: an in vivo patch-clamp analysis of analgesic mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Funai, Yusuke; Pickering, Anthony Edward; Uta, Daisuke; Nishikawa, Kiyonobu; Mori, Takashi; Asada, Akira; Imoto, Keiji; Furue, Hidemasa

    2014-01-01

    α2-adrenoceptors are widely distributed throughout the central nervous system (CNS) and the systemic administration of α2-agonists such as dexmedetomidine produces clinically useful, centrally-mediated sedation and analgesia; however, these same actions also limit the utility of these agents (ie unwanted sedative actions). Despite a wealth of data on cellular and synaptic actions of α2-agonists in vitro, it is not known which neuronal circuits are modulated in vivo to produce the analgesic effect. To address this issue, we made in vivo recordings of membrane currents and synaptic activities in superficial spinal dorsal horn neurons and examined their responses to systemic dexmedetomidine. We found that dexmedetomidine at doses that produce analgesia (<10 μg/kg) enhanced inhibitory postsynaptic transmission within the superficial dorsal horn without altering excitatory synaptic transmission or evoking direct postsynaptic membrane currents. In contrast, higher doses of dexmedetomidine (>10 μg/kg) induced outward currents by a direct postsynaptic action. The dexmedetomidine-mediated inhibitory postsynaptic current (IPSC) facilitation was not mimicked by spinal application of dexmedetomidine and was absent in spinalized rats, suggesting it acts at a supraspinal site. Further it was inhibited by spinal application of the α1-antagonist prazosin. In the brain stem, low doses of systemic dexmedetomidine produced an excitation of locus coeruleus neurons. These results suggest that systemic α2-adrenoceptor stimulation may facilitate inhibitory synaptic responses in the superficial dorsal horn to produce analgesia mediated by activation of the pontospinal noradrenergic inhibitory system. This novel mechanism may provide new targets for intervention perhaps allowing analgesic actions to be dissociated from excessive sedation. PMID:24355412

  1. Frequency-dependent facilitation of synaptic throughput via postsynaptic NMDA receptors in the nucleus of the solitary tract

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Huan; Peters, James H; Zhu, Mingyan; Page, Stephen J; Ritter, Robert C; Appleyard, Suzanne M

    2015-01-01

    Neurons within the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) receive vagal afferent innervations that initiate gastrointestinal and cardiovascular reflexes. Glutamate is the fast excitatory neurotransmitter released in the NTS by vagal afferents, which arrive there via the solitary tract (ST). ST stimulation elicits excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) in NTS neurons mediated by both AMPA- and NMDA-type glutamate receptors (-Rs). Vagal afferents exhibit a high probability of vesicle release and exhibit robust frequency-dependent depression due to presynaptic vesicle depletion. Nonetheless, synaptic throughput is maintained even at high frequencies of afferent activation. Here we test the hypothesis that postsynaptic NMDA-Rs are essential in maintaining throughput across ST–NTS synapses. Using patch clamp electrophysiology in horizontal brainstem slices, we found that NMDA-Rs, including NR2B subtypes, carry up to 70% of the charge transferred across the synapse during high frequency stimulations (>5 Hz). In contrast, their relative contribution to the ST-EPSC is much less during low (<2 Hz) frequency stimulations. Afferent-driven activation of NMDA-Rs produces a sustained depolarization during high, but not low, frequencies of stimulation as a result of relatively slow decay kinetics. Hence, NMDA-Rs are critical for maintaining action potential generation at high firing rates. These results demonstrate a novel role for NMDA-Rs enabling a high probability of release synapse to maintain the fidelity of synaptic transmission during high frequency firing when glutamate release and AMPA-R responses are reduced. They also suggest why NMDA-Rs are critical for responses that may depend on high rates of afferent discharge. PMID:25281729

  2. Transmission to Interneurons Is via Slow Excitatory Synaptic Potentials Mediated by P2Y1 Receptors during Descending Inhibition in Guinea-Pig Ileum

    PubMed Central

    Thornton, Peter D. J.; Gwynne, Rachel M.; McMillan, Darren J.; Bornstein, Joel C.

    2013-01-01

    Background The nature of synaptic transmission at functionally distinct synapses in intestinal reflex pathways has not been fully identified. In this study, we investigated whether transmission between interneurons in the descending inhibitory pathway is mediated by a purine acting at P2Y receptors to produce slow excitatory synaptic potentials (EPSPs). Methodology/Principal findings Myenteric neurons from guinea-pig ileum in vitro were impaled with intracellular microelectrodes. Responses to distension 15 mm oral to the recording site, in a separately perfused stimulation chamber and to electrical stimulation of local nerve trunks were recorded. A subset of neurons, previously identified as nitric oxide synthase immunoreactive descending interneurons, responded to both stimuli with slow EPSPs that were reversibly abolished by a high concentration of PPADS (30 ?M, P2 receptor antagonist). When added to the central chamber of a three chambered organ bath, PPADS concentration-dependently depressed transmission through that chamber of descending inhibitory reflexes, measured as inhibitory junction potentials in the circular muscle of the anal chamber. Reflexes evoked by distension in the central chamber were unaffected. A similar depression of transmission was seen when the specific P2Y1 receptor antagonist MRS 2179 (10 ?M) was in the central chamber. Blocking either nicotinic receptors (hexamethonium 200 ?M) or 5-HT3 receptors (granisetron 1 ?M) together with P2 receptors had no greater effect than blocking P2 receptors alone. Conclusions/Significance Slow EPSPs mediated by P2Y1 receptors, play a primary role in transmission between descending interneurons of the inhibitory reflexes in the guinea-pig ileum. This is the first demonstration for a primary role of excitatory metabotropic receptors in physiological transmission at a functionally identified synapse. PMID:23382795

  3. Reactive oxygen species enhance excitatory synaptic transmission in rat spinal dorsal horn neurons by activating TRPA1 and TRPV1 channels.

    PubMed

    Nishio, N; Taniguchi, W; Sugimura, Y K; Takiguchi, N; Yamanaka, M; Kiyoyuki, Yasukuni; Yamada, H; Miyazaki, N; Yoshida, M; Nakatsuka, T

    2013-09-01

    Central neuropathic pain (CNP) in the spinal cord, such as chronic pain after spinal cord injury (SCI), is an incurable ailment. However, little is known about the spinal cord mechanisms underlying CNP. Recently, reactive oxygen species (ROS) have been recognized to play an important role in CNP of the spinal cord. However, it is unclear how ROS affect synaptic transmission in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord. To clarify how ROS impact on synaptic transmission, we investigated the effects of ROS on synaptic transmission in rat spinal cord substantia gelatinosa (SG) neurons using whole-cell patch-clamp recordings. Administration of tert-butyl hydroperoxide (t-BOOH), an ROS donor, into the spinal cord markedly increased the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) in SG neurons. This t-BOOH-induced enhancement was not suppressed by the Na(+) channel blocker tetrodotoxin. However, in the presence of a non-N-methyl-D-aspartate glutamate receptor antagonist, 6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione, t-BOOH did not generate any sEPSCs. Furthermore, in the presence of a transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) channel antagonist (HC-030031) or a transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) channel antagonist (capsazepine or AMG9810), the t-BOOH-induced increase in the frequency of sEPSCs was inhibited. These results indicate that ROS enhance the spontaneous release of glutamate from presynaptic terminals onto SG neurons through TRPA1 and TRPV1 channel activation. Excessive activation of these ion channels by ROS may induce central sensitization in the spinal cord and result in chronic pain such as that following SCI. PMID:23707800

  4. Interplay of cell-autonomous and non-autonomous mechanisms tailors synaptic connectivity of converging axons in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Okawa, Haruhisa; Santina, Luca Della; Schwartz, Gregory W.; Rieke, Fred; Wong, Rachel O. L.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Neurons receive input from diverse afferents but form stereotypic connections with axons of each type to execute their precise functions. Developmental mechanisms that specify the connectivity of individual axons across populations of converging afferents are not well-understood. Here, we untangled the contributions of activity-dependent and independent interactions that regulate connections of two input types providing major and minor input onto a neuron. Individual transmission-deficient retinal bipolar cells (BCs) reduced synapses with retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), but active BCs of the same type sharing the dendrite surprisingly did not compensate for this loss. Genetic ablation of some BC neighbors resulted in increased synaptogenesis by the remaining axons in a transmission-independent manner. Presence but not transmission of the major BC input also dissuades wiring with the minor input, and with synaptically-compatible but functionally-mismatched afferents. Cell-autonomous, activity-dependent and non-autonomous, activity-independent mechanisms thus together tailor connections of individual axons amongst converging inner retinal afferents. PMID:24698272

  5. Botulinum and Tetanus Neurotoxin-Induced Blockade of Synaptic Transmission in Networked Cultures of Human and Rodent Neurons.

    PubMed

    Beske, Phillip H; Bradford, Aaron B; Grynovicki, Justin O; Glotfelty, Elliot J; Hoffman, Katie M; Hubbard, Kyle S; Tuznik, Kaylie M; McNutt, Patrick M

    2016-02-01

    Clinical manifestations of tetanus and botulism result from an intricate series of interactions between clostridial neurotoxins (CNTs) and nerve terminal proteins that ultimately cause proteolytic cleavage of SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) proteins and functional blockade of neurotransmitter release. Although detection of cleaved SNARE proteins is routinely used as a molecular readout of CNT intoxication in cultured cells, impaired synaptic function is the pathophysiological basis of clinical disease. Work in our laboratory has suggested that the blockade of synaptic neurotransmission in networked neuron cultures offers a phenotypic readout of CNT intoxication that more closely replicates the functional endpoint of clinical disease. Here, we explore the value of measuring spontaneous neurotransmission frequencies as novel and functionally relevant readouts of CNT intoxication. The generalizability of this approach was confirmed in primary neuron cultures as well as human and mouse stem cell-derived neurons exposed to botulinum neurotoxin serotypes A-G and tetanus neurotoxin. The sensitivity and specificity of synaptic activity as a reporter of intoxication was evaluated in assays representing the principal clinical and research purposes of in vivo studies. Our findings confirm that synaptic activity offers a novel and functionally relevant readout for the in vitro characterizations of CNTs. They further suggest that the analysis of synaptic activity in neuronal cell cultures can serve as a surrogate for neuromuscular paralysis in the mouse lethal assay, and therefore is expected to significantly reduce the need for terminal animal use in toxin studies and facilitate identification of candidate therapeutics in cell-based screening assays. PMID:26615023

  6. Synaptic ultrastructure changes in trigeminocervical complex posttrigeminal nerve injury.

    PubMed

    Park, John; Trinh, Van Nancy; Sears-Kraxberger, Ilse; Li, Kang-Wu; Steward, Oswald; Luo, Z David

    2016-02-01

    Trigeminal nerves collecting sensory information from the orofacial area synapse on second-order neurons in the dorsal horn of subnucleus caudalis and cervical C1/C2 spinal cord (Vc/C2, or trigeminocervical complex), which is critical for sensory information processing. Injury to the trigeminal nerves may cause maladaptive changes in synaptic connectivity that plays an important role in chronic pain development. Here we examined whether injury to the infraorbital nerve, a branch of the trigeminal nerves, led to synaptic ultrastructural changes when the injured animals have developed neuropathic pain states. Transmission electron microscopy was used to examine synaptic profiles in Vc/C2 at 3 weeks postinjury, corresponding to the time of peak behavioral hypersensitivity following chronic constriction injury to the infraorbital nerve (CCI-ION). Using established criteria, synaptic profiles were classified as associated with excitatory (R-), inhibitory (F-), and primary afferent (C-) terminals. Each type was counted within the superficial dorsal horn of the Vc/C2 and the means from each rat were compared between sham and injured animals; synaptic contact length was also measured. The overall analysis indicates that rats with orofacial pain states had increased numbers and decreased mean synaptic length of R-profiles within the Vc/C2 superficial dorsal horn (lamina I) 3 weeks post-CCI-ION. Increases in the number of excitatory synapses in the superficial dorsal horn of Vc/C2 could lead to enhanced activation of nociceptive pathways, contributing to the development of orofacial pain states. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:309-322, 2016. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26132987

  7. Defective synaptic transmission and structure in the dentate gyrus and selective fear memory impairment in the Rsk2 mutant mouse model of Coffin-Lowry syndrome.

    PubMed

    Morice, Elise; Farley, Séverine; Poirier, Roseline; Dallerac, Glenn; Chagneau, Carine; Pannetier, Solange; Hanauer, André; Davis, Sabrina; Vaillend, Cyrille; Laroche, Serge

    2013-10-01

    The Coffin-Lowry syndrome (CLS) is a syndromic form of intellectual disability caused by loss-of-function of the RSK2 serine/threonine kinase encoded by the rsk2 gene. Rsk2 knockout mice, a murine model of CLS, exhibit spatial learning and memory impairments, yet the underlying neural mechanisms are unknown. In the current study, we examined the performance of Rsk2 knockout mice in cued, trace and contextual fear memory paradigms and identified selective deficits in the consolidation and reconsolidation of hippocampal-dependent fear memories as task difficulty and hippocampal demand increase. Electrophysiological, biochemical and electron microscopy analyses were carried out in the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus to explore potential alterations in neuronal functions and structure. In vivo and in vitro electrophysiology revealed impaired synaptic transmission, decreased network excitability and reduced AMPA and NMDA conductance in Rsk2 knockout mice. In the absence of RSK2, standard measures of short-term and long-term potentiation (LTP) were normal, however LTP-induced CREB phosphorylation and expression of the transcription factors EGR1/ZIF268 were reduced and that of the scaffolding protein SHANK3 was blocked, indicating impaired activity-dependent gene regulation. At the structural level, the density of perforated and non-perforated synapses and of multiple spine boutons was not altered, however, a clear enlargement of spine neck width and post-synaptic densities indicates altered synapse ultrastructure. These findings show that RSK2 loss-of-function is associated in the dentate gyrus with multi-level alterations that encompass modifications of glutamate receptor channel properties, synaptic transmission, plasticity-associated gene expression and spine morphology, providing novel insights into the mechanisms contributing to cognitive impairments in CLS. PMID:23742761

  8. Neutralization of inhibitory molecule NG2 improves synaptic transmission, retrograde transport, and locomotor function after spinal cord injury in adult rats.

    PubMed

    Petrosyan, Hayk A; Hunanyan, Arsen S; Alessi, Valentina; Schnell, Lisa; Levine, Joel; Arvanian, Victor L

    2013-02-27

    NG2 belongs to the family of chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans that are upregulated after spinal cord injury (SCI) and are major inhibitory factors restricting the growth of fibers after SCI. Neutralization of NG2's inhibitory effect on axon growth by anti-NG2 monoclonal antibodies (NG2-Ab) has been reported. In addition, recent studies show that exogenous NG2 induces a block of axonal conduction. In this study, we demonstrate that acute intraspinal injections of NG2-Ab prevented an acute block of conduction by NG2. Chronic intrathecal infusion of NG2-Ab improved the following deficits induced by chronic midthoracic lateral hemisection (HX) injury: (1) synaptic transmission to lumbar motoneurons, (2) retrograde transport of fluororuby anatomical tracer from L5 to L1, and (3) locomotor function assessed by automated CatWalk gait analysis. We collected data in an attempt to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the NG2-Ab-induced improvement of synaptic transmission in HX-injured spinal cord. These data showed the following: (1) that chronic NG2-Ab infusion improved conduction and axonal excitability in chronically HX-injured rats, (2) that antibody treatment increased the density of serotonergic axons with ventral regions of spinal segments L1-L5, (3) and that NG2-positive processes contact nodes of Ranvier within the nodal gap at the location of nodal Na(+) channels, which are known to be critical for propagation of action potentials along axons. Together, these results demonstrate that treatment with NG2-Ab partially improves both synaptic and anatomical plasticity in damaged spinal cord and promotes functional recovery after HX SCI. Neutralizing antibodies against NG2 may be an excellent way to promote axonal conduction after SCI. PMID:23447612

  9. 2-pyrrolidinone induces a long-lasting facilitation of hippocampal synaptic transmission by enhancing alpha7 ACh receptor responses via a PKC pathway.

    PubMed

    Miyamoto, Hirohito; Yaguchi, Takahiro; Ohta, Kohei; Nagai, Kaoru; Nagata, Tetsu; Yamamoto, Satoshi; Nishizaki, Tomoyuki

    2003-09-10

    2-Pyrrolidinone, a metabolite of aniracetam, potentiated currents through alpha7 receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes, in a bell-shaped dose-dependent manner at concentrations ranged from 1 nM to 10 microM, with a maximum at 100 nM (189% of original levels 60 min after 20-min treatment). The potentiation was inhibited by GF109203X, a selective inhibitor of protein kinase C (PKC), but not by KN-93, a selective inhibitor of CaMKII, or H-89, a selective inhibitor of protein kinase A (PKA). In the PKC assay using reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography, 2-pyrrolidinone enhanced activity of PKC-epsilon activated by linoleic acid to about 1.8-times greater than that in the absence of 2-pyrrolidinone, although it did not directly activate PKC-epsilon. In the Western immunoblot analysis, rat hippocampal slices treated with 2-pyrrolidinone (100 nM) was more reactive to an antibody against phosphorylated myristoylated alanine-rich C kinase substrate (MARCKS) than untreated slices. 2-Pyrrolidinone (100 nM) induced a long-lasting facilitation of hippocampal synaptic transmission in the CA1 region of rat hippocampal slices, and the facilitation was inhibited by GF109203X or alpha-bungarotoxin, an inhibitor of alpha7 receptors. The results of the present study suggest that 2-pyrrolidinone enhances activity of activated PKC, thereby potentiating alpha7 receptor responses, and then leading to a facilitation of hippocampal synaptic transmission. PMID:14499485

  10. Ethanol Enhances Glutamate Transmission by Retrograde Dopamine Signaling in a Postsynaptic Neuron/Synaptic Bouton Preparation From the Ventral Tegmental Area

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Chunyu; Li, Ke-Yong; Zhou, Chunyi; Ye, Jiang-Hong

    2009-01-01

    It is well documented that somatodendritically released dopamine is important in the excitability and synaptic transmission of midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Recently we showed that in midbrain slices, acute ethanol exposure facilitates glutamatergic transmission onto dopaminergic neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA). The VTA is a brain region critical to the rewarding effects of abused drugs, including ethanol. We hypothesized that ethanol facilitation might result from an increase in somatodendritically released dopamine, which acts retrogradely on dopamine D1 receptors on glutamate-releasing axons and consequently leads to an increase in glutamate release onto dopaminergic neurons. To further test this hypothesis and to examine whether ethanol facilitation can occur at the single-cell level, VTA neurons were freshly isolated from rat brains using an enzyme-free procedure. These isolated neurons retain functional synaptic terminals, including those that release glutamate. Spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) mediated by glutamate ?-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid receptors were recorded from these freshly isolated putative dopaminergic neurons. We found that acute application of clinically relevant concentrations of ethanol (10?80 mM) significantly facilitated the frequency of sEPSCs but not their mean amplitude. Ethanol facilitation was mimicked by the D1 agonist SKF 38393 and by the dopamine uptake blocker GBR 12935 but was blocked by the D1 antagonist SKF 83566, and by depleting dopamine stores with reserpine, as well as by chelating postsynaptic calcium with BAPTA. Furthermore, the sodium channel blocker tetrodotoxin eliminated the facilitation of sEPSCs induced by ethanol but not by SKF 38393. These results constitute the first evidence from single isolated cells of ethanol facilitation of glutamate transmission to dopaminergic neurons in the VTA. In addition, we show that ethanol facilitation has a postsynaptic origin and a presynaptic locus. Furthermore, ethanol stimulation of a single dopaminergic neuron is capable of eliciting the release of somatodendritic dopamine, which is sufficient to influence glutamatergic transmission at individual synapses. PMID:18784647

  11. Enhanced G protein-dependent modulation of excitatory synaptic transmission in the cerebellum of the Ca2+ channel-mutant mouse, tottering

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Yu Dong; Turner, Timothy J; Dunlap, Kathleen

    2003-01-01

    Tottering, a mouse model for absence epilepsy and cerebellar ataxia, carries a mutation in the gene encoding class A (P/Q-type) Ca2+ channels, the dominant exocytotic Ca2+ channel at most synapses in the mammalian central nervous system. Comparing tottering to wild-type mice, we have studied glutamatergic transmission between parallel fibres and Purkinje cells in cerebellar slices. Results from biochemical assays and electrical field recordings demonstrate that glutamate release from parallel fibre terminals of the tottering mouse is controlled largely by class B Ca2+ channels (N-type), in contrast to the P/Q-channels that dominate release from wild-type terminals. Since N-channels, in a variety of assays, are more effectively inhibited by G proteins than are P/Q-channels, we tested whether synaptic transmission between parallel fibres and Purkinje cells in tottering mice was more susceptible to inhibitory modulation by G protein-coupled receptors than in their wild-type counterparts. GABAB receptors and ?2-adrenergic receptors (activated by bath application of transmitters) produced a three- to fivefold more potent inhibition of transmission in tottering than in wild-type synapses. This increased modulation is likely to be important for cerebellar transmission in vivo, since heterosynaptic depression, produced by activating GABAergic interneurones, greatly prolonged GABAB receptor-mediated presynaptic inhibition in tottering as compared to wild-type slices. We propose that this enhanced modulation shifts the balance of synaptic input to Purkinje cells in favour of inhibition, reducing Purkinje cell output from the cerebellum, and may contribute to the aberrant motor phenotype that is characteristic of this mutant animal. PMID:12562906

  12. Calcium/calmodulin-dependent kinase II and long-term potentiation enhance synaptic transmission by the same mechanism.

    PubMed Central

    Lledo, P M; Hjelmstad, G O; Mukherji, S; Soderling, T R; Malenka, R C; Nicoll, R A

    1995-01-01

    Ca(2+)-sensitive kinases are thought to play a role in long-term potentiation (LTP). To test the involvement of Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent kinase II (CaM-K II), truncated, constitutively active form of this kinase was directly injected into CA1 hippocampal pyramidal cells. Inclusion of CaM-K II in the recording pipette resulted in a gradual increase in the size of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs). No change in evoked responses occurred when the pipette contained heat-inactivated kinase. The effects of CaM-K II mimicked several features of LTP in that it caused a decreased incidence of synaptic failures, an increase in the size of spontaneous EPSCs, and an increase in the amplitude of responses to iontophoretically applied alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionate. To determine whether the CaM-K II-induced enhancement and LTP share a common mechanism, occlusion experiments were carried out. The enhancing action of CaM-K II was greatly diminished by prior induction of LTP. In addition, following the increase in synaptic strength by CaM-K II, tetanic stimulation failed to evoke LTP. These findings indicate that CaM-K II alone is sufficient to augment synaptic strength and that this enhancement shares the same underlying mechanism as the enhancement observed with LTP. PMID:7479960

  13. Human Neuropsychiatric Disease Modeling using Conditional Deletion Reveals Synaptic Transmission Defects Caused by Heterozygous Mutations in NRXN1.

    PubMed

    Pak, ChangHui; Danko, Tamas; Zhang, Yingsha; Aoto, Jason; Anderson, Garret; Maxeiner, Stephan; Yi, Fei; Wernig, Marius; Südhof, Thomas C

    2015-09-01

    Heterozygous mutations of the NRXN1 gene, which encodes the presynaptic cell-adhesion molecule neurexin-1, were repeatedly associated with autism and schizophrenia. However, diverse clinical presentations of NRXN1 mutations in patients raise the question of whether heterozygous NRXN1 mutations alone directly impair synaptic function. To address this question under conditions that precisely control for genetic background, we generated human ESCs with different heterozygous conditional NRXN1 mutations and analyzed two different types of isogenic control and NRXN1 mutant neurons derived from these ESCs. Both heterozygous NRXN1 mutations selectively impaired neurotransmitter release in human neurons without changing neuronal differentiation or synapse formation. Moreover, both NRXN1 mutations increased the levels of CASK, a critical synaptic scaffolding protein that binds to neurexin-1. Our results show that, unexpectedly, heterozygous inactivation of NRXN1 directly impairs synaptic function in human neurons, and they illustrate the value of this conditional deletion approach for studying the functional effects of disease-associated mutations. PMID:26279266

  14. Vanilloid-sensitive afferents activate neurons with prominent A-type potassium currents in nucleus tractus solitarius.

    PubMed

    Bailey, Timothy W; Jin, Young-Ho; Doyle, Mark W; Andresen, Michael C

    2002-09-15

    Cranial visceral afferents innervate second-order nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) neurons via myelinated (A-type) and unmyelinated (C-type) axons in the solitary tract (ST). A- and C-type afferents often evoke reflexes with distinct performance differences, especially with regard to their frequency-dependent properties. In horizontal brainstem slices, we used the vanilloid receptor 1 agonist capsaicin (CAP; 100 nm) to identify CAP-sensitive and CAP-resistant ST afferent pathways to second-order NTS neurons and tested whether these two groups of neurons had similar intrinsic potassium currents. ST stimulation evoked monosynaptic EPSCs identified by minimal synaptic jitter (<150 microsec) and divided into two groups: CAP-sensitive (n = 37) and CAP-resistant (n = 22). EPSCs in CAP-sensitive neurons had longer latencies (5.1 +/- 0.3 vs 3.6 +/- 0.3 msec; p = 0.001) but similar jitter (p = 0.57) compared with CAP-resistant neurons, respectively. Transient outward currents (TOCs) were significantly greater in CAP-sensitive than in CAP-resistant neurons. Steady-state currents were similar in both groups. 4-Aminopyridine or depolarized conditioning blocked the TOC, but tetraethylammonium had no effect. Voltage-dependent activation and inactivation of TOC were consistent with an A-type K+ current, I(KA). In current clamp, the activation of I(KA) reduced neuronal excitability and action potential responses to ST transmission. Our results suggest that the potassium-channel differences of second-order NTS neurons contribute to the differential processing of A- and C-type cranial visceral afferents beginning as early as this first central neuron. I(KA) can act as a frequency transmission filter and may represent a key target for the modulation of temporal processing of reflex responsiveness such as within the baroreflex arc. PMID:12223577

  15. A-type potassium channels differentially tune afferent pathways from rat solitary tract nucleus to caudal ventrolateral medulla or paraventricular hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Bailey, T W; Hermes, S M; Whittier, K L; Aicher, S A; Andresen, M C

    2007-07-15

    The solitary tract nucleus (NTS) conveys visceral information to diverse central networks involved in homeostatic regulation. Although afferent information content arriving at various CNS sites varies substantially, little is known about the contribution of processing within the NTS to these differences. Using retrograde dyes to identify specific NTS projection neurons, we recently reported that solitary tract (ST) afferents directly contact NTS neurons projecting to caudal ventrolateral medulla (CVLM) but largely only indirectly contact neurons projecting to the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN). Since intrinsic properties impact information transmission, here we evaluated potassium channel expression and somatodendritic morphology of projection neurons and their relation to afferent information output directed to PVN or CVLM pathways. In slices, tracer-identified projection neurons were classified as directly or indirectly (polysynaptically) coupled to ST afferents by EPSC latency characteristics (directly coupled, jitter < 200 micros). In each neuron, voltage-dependent potassium currents (IK) were evaluated and, in representative neurons, biocytin-filled structures were quantified. Both CVLM- and PVN-projecting neurons had similar, tetraethylammonium-sensitive IK. However, only PVN-projecting NTS neurons displayed large transient, 4-aminopyridine-sensitive, A-type currents (IKA). PVN-projecting neurons had larger cell bodies with more elaborate dendritic morphology than CVLM-projecting neurons. ST shocks faithfully (> 75%) triggered action potentials in CVLM-projecting neurons but spike output was uniformly low (< 20%) in PVN-projecting neurons. Pre-conditioning hyperpolarization removed IKA inactivation and attenuated ST-evoked spike generation along PVN but not CVLM pathways. Thus, multiple differences in structure, organization, synaptic transmission and ion channel expression tune the overall fidelity of afferent signals that reach these destinations. PMID:17510187

  16. Pathological gamma oscillations, impaired dopamine release, synapse loss and reduced dynamic range of unitary glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the striatum of hypokinetic Q175 Huntington mice.

    PubMed

    Rothe, T; Deliano, M; Wójtowicz, A M; Dvorzhak, A; Harnack, D; Paul, S; Vagner, T; Melnick, I; Stark, H; Grantyn, R

    2015-12-17

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a severe genetically inherited neurodegenerative disorder. Patients present with three principal phenotypes of motor symptoms: choreatic, hypokinetic-rigid and mixed. The Q175 mouse model of disease offers an opportunity to investigate the cellular basis of the hypokinetic-rigid form of HD. At the age of 1year homozygote Q175 mice exhibited the following signs of hypokinesia: Reduced frequency of spontaneous movements on a precision balance at daytime (-55%), increased total time spent without movement in an open field (+42%), failures in the execution of unconditioned avoidance reactions (+32%), reduced ability for conditioned avoidance (-96%) and increased reaction times (+65%) in a shuttle box. Local field potential recordings revealed low-frequency gamma oscillations in the striatum as a characteristic feature of HD mice at rest. There was no significant loss of DARPP-32 immunolabeled striatal projection neurons (SPNs) although the level of DARPP-32 immunoreactivity was lower in HD. As a potential cause of hypokinesia, HD mice revealed a strong reduction in striatal KCl-induced dopamine release, accompanied by a decrease in the number of tyrosine hydroxylase-(TH)- and VMAT2-positive synaptic varicosities. The presynaptic TH fluorescence level was also reduced. Patch-clamp experiments were performed in slices from 1-year-old mice to record unitary EPSCs (uEPSCs) of presumed cortical origin in the absence of G-protein-mediated modulation. In HD mice, the maximal amplitudes of uEPSCs amounted to 69% of the WT level which matches the loss of VGluT1+/SYP+ synaptic terminals in immunostained sections. These results identify impairment of cortico-striatal synaptic transmission and dopamine release as a potential basis of hypokinesia in HD. PMID:26546830

  17. Loss of neuronal GSK3β reduces dendritic spine stability and attenuates excitatory synaptic transmission via β-catenin

    PubMed Central

    Ochs, S M; Dorostkar, M M; Aramuni, G; Schön, C; Filser, S; Pöschl, J; Kremer, A; Van Leuven, F; Ovsepian, S V; Herms, J

    2015-01-01

    Central nervous glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β) is implicated in a number of neuropsychiatric diseases, such as bipolar disorder, depression, schizophrenia, fragile X syndrome or anxiety disorder. Many drugs employed to treat these conditions inhibit GSK3β either directly or indirectly. We studied how conditional knockout of GSK3β affected structural synaptic plasticity. Deletion of the GSK3β gene in a subset of cortical and hippocampal neurons in adult mice led to reduced spine density. In vivo imaging revealed that this was caused by a loss of persistent spines, whereas stabilization of newly formed spines was reduced. In electrophysiological recordings, these structural alterations correlated with a considerable drop in the frequency and amplitude of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor-dependent miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents. Expression of constitutively active β-catenin caused reduction in spine density and electrophysiological alterations similar to GSK3β knockout, suggesting that the effects of GSK3β knockout were mediated by the accumulation of β-catenin. In summary, changes of dendritic spines, both in quantity and in morphology, are correlates of experience-dependent synaptic plasticity; thus, these results may help explain the mechanism of action of psychotropic drugs inhibiting GSK3β. PMID:24912492

  18. Adenosine (ADO) released during orthodromic stimulation of the frog sympathetic ganglion inhibits phosphatidylinositol turnover (PI) associated with synaptic transmission

    SciTech Connect

    Curnish, R.; Bencherif, M.; Rubio, R.; Berne, R.M.

    1986-03-05

    The authors have previously demonstrated that /sup 3/H-purine release was enhanced during synaptic activation of the prelabelled frog sympathetic ganglion. In addition, during orthodromic stimulation, there is an increased /sup 3/H-inositol release (an index of PI) that occurs during the poststimulation period and not during the period of stimulation. They hypothesized that endogenous ADO inhibits PI turnover during orthodromic stimulation. To test this hypothesis (1) they performed experiments to directly measure ADO release in the extracellular fluid by placing the ganglion in a 5 ..mu..l drop of Ringer's and let it come to equilibrium with the interstitial fluid, (2) they destroyed endogenous ADO by suffusing adenosine deaminase (ADA) during the stimulation period. Their results show (1) orthodromic stimulation increases release of ADO into the bathing medium, (2) ADA induced an increase of PI during the stimulation period in contrast to an increase seen only during the poststimulation period when ADA was omitted. They conclude that there is dual control of PI during synaptic activity, a stimulatory effect (cause unknown) and a short lived inhibitory effect that is probably caused by adenosine.

  19. 5-HT7 receptors as modulators of neuronal excitability, synaptic transmission and plasticity: physiological role and possible implications in autism spectrum disorders

    PubMed Central

    Ciranna, Lucia; Catania, Maria Vincenza

    2014-01-01

    Serotonin type 7 receptors (5-HT7) are expressed in several brain areas, regulate brain development, synaptic transmission and plasticity, and therefore are involved in various brain functions such as learning and memory. A number of studies suggest that 5-HT7 receptors could be potential pharmacotherapeutic target for cognitive disorders. Several abnormalities of serotonergic system have been described in patients with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), including abnormal activity of 5-HT transporter, altered blood and brain 5-HT levels, reduced 5-HT synthesis and altered expression of 5-HT receptors in the brain. A specific role for 5-HT7 receptors in ASD has not yet been demonstrated but some evidence implicates their possible involvement. We have recently shown that 5-HT7 receptor activation rescues hippocampal synaptic plasticity in a mouse model of Fragile X Syndrome, a monogenic cause of autism. Several other studies have shown that 5-HT7 receptors modulate behavioral flexibility, exploratory behavior, mood disorders and epilepsy, which include core and co-morbid symptoms of ASD. These findings further suggest an involvement of 5-HT7 receptors in ASD. Here, we review the physiological roles of 5-HT7 receptors and their implications in Fragile X Syndrome and other ASD. PMID:25221471

  20. Synaptic function.

    PubMed Central

    Richmond, Janet

    2005-01-01

    C. elegans has emerged as a powerful genetic model organism in which to study synaptic function. Most synaptic proteins in the C. elegans genome are highly conserved and mutants can be readily generated by forward and reverse genetics. Most C. elegans synaptic protein mutants are viable affording an opportunity to study the functional consequences in vivo. Recent advances in electrophysiological approaches permit functional analysis of mutant synapses in situ. This has contributed to an already powerful arsenal of techniques available to study synaptic function in C. elegans. This review highlights C. elegans mutants affecting specific stages of the synaptic vesicle cycle, with emphasis on studies conducted at the neuromuscular junction. PMID:18050398

  1. Ventral Tegmental Area Afferents and Drug-Dependent Behaviors

    PubMed Central

    Oliva, Idaira; Wanat, Matthew J.

    2016-01-01

    Drug-related behaviors in both humans and rodents are commonly thought to arise from aberrant learning processes. Preclinical studies demonstrate that the acquisition and expression of many drug-dependent behaviors involves the ventral tegmental area (VTA), a midbrain structure comprised of dopamine, GABA, and glutamate neurons. Drug experience alters the excitatory and inhibitory synaptic input onto VTA dopamine neurons, suggesting a critical role for VTA afferents in mediating the effects of drugs. In this review, we present evidence implicating the VTA in drug-related behaviors, highlight the diversity of neuronal populations in the VTA, and discuss the behavioral effects of selectively manipulating VTA afferents. Future experiments are needed to determine which VTA afferents and what neuronal populations in the VTA mediate specific drug-dependent behaviors. Further studies are also necessary for identifying the afferent-specific synaptic alterations onto dopamine and non-dopamine neurons in the VTA following drug administration. The identification of neural circuits and adaptations involved with drug-dependent behaviors can highlight potential neural targets for pharmacological and deep brain stimulation interventions to treat substance abuse disorders. PMID:27014097

  2. Transmission from the dominant input shapes the stereotypic ratio of photoreceptor inputs onto horizontal cells

    PubMed Central

    Yoshimatsu, Takeshi; Williams, Philip R.; D’Orazi, Florence D.; Suzuki, Sachihiro C.; Fadool, James M.; Allison, W. Ted; Raymond, Pamela A.; Wong, Rachel O.

    2014-01-01

    Many neurons receive synapses in stereotypic proportions from converging but functionally distinct afferents. However, developmental mechanisms regulating synaptic convergence are not well understood. Here we describe a heterotypic mechanism by which one afferent controls synaptogenesis of another afferent, but not vice-versa. Like other CNS circuits, zebrafish retinal H3 horizontal cells undergo an initial period of remodeling, establishing synapses with UV and blue cones while eliminating red and green cone contacts. As development progresses, the horizontal cells selectively synapse with UV cones to generate a 5:1 UV-to-blue cone synapse ratio. Blue cone synaptogenesis increases in mutants lacking UV cones, and when transmitter release or visual stimulation of UV cones is perturbed. Connectivity is unaltered when blue cone transmission is suppressed. Moreover, there is no homotypic regulation of cone synaptogenesis by neurotransmission. Thus, biased connectivity in this circuit is established by an unusual activity-dependent, unidirectional control of synaptogenesis exerted by the dominant input. PMID:24832361

  3. Influence of organophosphate and anticholinergic agents on Ca++ -dependent processes in synaptic transmission. Final report, 15 September 1981-14 December 1983

    SciTech Connect

    Ross, D.H.

    1989-06-12

    The present report reviews progress over a period of 28 months in studies concerning the effects of organophosphates and anticholinergic agents on Ca++ -dependent processes in synaptic transmission. Processes which were studied include voltage-dependent and receptor operated Ca++ channels, Na+/Ca++ exchange, Ca++/Mg++ -ATPase plasma membrane pump, and ATP-dependent Ca++ uptake into endoplasmic reticulum. Initial studies focused on the effect of muscarinic receptor agonists on voltage-dependent Ca++ channels, Ca++/Mg++ -ATPase, ATP-dependent Ca++ uptake, and Na/Ca++ exchange in rat brain synaptosomes and synaptosomal membranes. These studies characterized two phases of Ca++ influx and time courses for Ca++ entry. Acute in vitro soman treatment (50 microns for 2 min) did not alter Ca++ influx through voltage-operated channels.

  4. Synaptic mechanisms underlying cholinergic control of thalamic reticular nucleus neurons

    PubMed Central

    Beierlein, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Neuronal networks of the thalamus are the target of extensive cholinergic projections from the basal forebrain and the brainstem. Activation of these afferents can regulate neuronal excitability, transmitter release, and firing patterns in thalamic networks, thereby altering the flow of sensory information during distinct behavioural states. However, cholinergic regulation in the thalamus has been primarily examined by using receptor agonist and antagonist, which has precluded a detailed understanding of the spatiotemporal dynamics that govern cholinergic signalling under physiological conditions. This review summarizes recent studies on cholinergic synaptic transmission in the thalamic reticular nucleus (TRN), a brain structure intimately involved in the control of sensory processing and the generation of rhythmic activity in the thalamocortical system. This work has shown that acetylcholine (ACh) released from individual axons can rapidly and reliably activate both pre- and postsynaptic cholinergic receptors, thereby controlling TRN neuronal activity with high spatiotemporal precision. PMID:24973413

  5. Promotion of forskolin-induced long-term potentiation of synaptic transmission by caffeine in area CA1 of the rat hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Lu, K T; Wu, S P; Gean, P W

    1999-12-31

    Caffeine which is present in soft drinks has been shown to increase alertness and allays drowsiness and fatigue. The aim of this study is to investigate whether caffeine could produce a long-term effect on the synaptic transmission using extracellular recording technique in the hippocampal slices. Bath application of caffeine (100 microM) reversibly increased the slope of field excitatory postsynaptic potential (fEPSP). Forskolin (25 microM) by its own did not affect the fEPSP significantly. However, in the presence of caffeine, forskolin induced a long-term potentiation (LTP) of fEPSP. Enprofylline which has been shown to exhibit some actions like caffeine but with a low adenosine antagonistic potency did not affect the normal synaptic transmission or the effect of forskolin at a lower concentration (10 microM). However, when the concentrations were increased to 20 and 50 microM, enprofylline significantly enhanced the fEPSP slope and promoted forskolin-induced LTP. The parallel increase of fEPSP and promotion of LTP observed with enprofylline suggests that adenosine A1 antagonism is the primary mechanism behind caffeine's effect. This hypothesis was further strengthened by the finding that promotion of forskolin-induced LTP was mimicked by the non-xanthine adenosine antagonist 9-chloro-2-(furyl)[1,2,4]triazolo [1,5-c]quinazolin-5-amine (CGS 15943). The promotion of forskolin-induced LTP provides a cellular basis behind caffeine's increase in capacity for sustained intellectual performance. PMID:10707900

  6. Potentiation of Acetylcholine-Mediated Facilitation of Inhibitory Synaptic Transmission by an Azaindolizione Derivative, ZSET1446 (ST101), in the Rat Hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Takeda, Kentaro; Yamaguchi, Yoshimasa; Hino, Masataka; Kato, Fusao

    2016-02-01

    The integrity of the hippocampal network depends on the coordination of excitatory and inhibitory signaling, which are under dynamic control by various regulatory influences such as the cholinergic systems. ZSET1446 (ST101; spiro[imidazo[1,2-a]pyridine-3,2-indan]-2(3H)-one) is a newly synthesized azaindolizinone derivative that significantly improves learning deficits in various types of Alzheimer disease (AD) models in rats. We examined the effect of ZSET1446 on the nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptor (nAChR)-mediated regulation of synaptic transmission in hippocampal slices of rats. ZSET1446 significantly potentiated the facilitatory effect of nicotine and ACh on the frequency of spontaneous postsynaptic currents (sPSCs) recorded in CA1 pyramidal neurons with a maximum effect at 100 pM (tested range, 10 pM-1000 pM). The basal sPSC frequency without ACh was not affected. Such potentiation by ZSET1446 was observed in both the pharmacologic isolations of inhibitory and excitatory sPSCs and markedly reduced by blockade of either ?7 or ?4?2 nAChRs. ZSET1446 did not affect ACh-activated inward currents or depolarization of interneurons in the stratum radiatum and the lacunosum moleculare. These results indicate that ZSET1446 potentiates the nicotine-mediated enhancement of synaptic transmission in the hippocampal neurons without affecting nAChRs themselves, providing a novel possible mechanism of procognitive action that might improve learning deficits in clinical therapy. PMID:26578264

  7. Time-dependent modulation of GABA(A)-ergic synaptic transmission by allopregnanolone in locus coeruleus neurons of Mecp2-null mice.

    PubMed

    Jin, Xin; Zhong, Weiwei; Jiang, Chun

    2013-12-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder with symptoms starting 6-18 mo after birth, while what underlies the delayed onset is unclear. Allopregnanolone (Allop) is a metabolite of progesterone and a potent modulator of GABAA-ergic currents whose defects are seen in RTT. Allop changes its concentration during the perinatal period, which may affect central neurons via the GABAA-ergic synaptic transmission, contributing to the onset of the disease. To determine whether Mecp2 disruption affects Allop modulation, we performed studies in brain slices obtained from wild-type (WT) and Mecp2(-/Y) mice. Allop dose dependently suppressed locus coeruleus (LC) neuronal excitability in WT mice, while Mecp2-null neurons showed significant defects. Using optogenetic approaches, channelrhodopsin was specifically expressed in GABA-ergic neurons in which optical stimulation evoked action potentials. In LC neurons of WT mice, Allop exposure increased the amplitude of GABAA-ergic inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) evoked by optical stimulation and prolonged the IPSC decay time. Consistently, Allop augmented both frequency and amplitude of GABAA-ergic spontaneous IPSCs (sIPSCs) and extended the decay time of sIPSCs. The Allop-induced potentiation of sIPSCs was deficient in Mecp2(-/Y) mice. Surprisingly, the impairment occurred at 3 wk postnatal age, while no significant difference in Allop modulation was observed in 1-2 wk between WT and Mecp2(-/Y) mice. These results indicate that the modulation of GABAA-ergic synaptic transmission by Allop is impaired in LC neurons of Mecp2-null mice at a time when RTT-like symptoms manifest, suggesting a potential mechanism for the delayed onset of the disease. PMID:24067915

  8. Amplification of neuromuscular transmission by methylprednisolone involves activation of presynaptic facilitatory adenosine A2A receptors and redistribution of synaptic vesicles.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, L; Costa, A C; Noronha-Matos, J B; Silva, I; Cavalcante, W L G; Timóteo, M A; Corrado, A P; Dal Belo, C A; Ambiel, C R; Alves-do-Prado, W; Correia-de-Sá, P

    2015-02-01

    The mechanisms underlying improvement of neuromuscular transmission deficits by glucocorticoids are still a matter of debate despite these compounds have been used for decades in the treatment of autoimmune myasthenic syndromes. Besides their immunosuppressive action, corticosteroids may directly facilitate transmitter release during high-frequency motor nerve activity. This effect coincides with the predominant adenosine A2A receptor tonus, which coordinates the interplay with other receptors (e.g. muscarinic) on motor nerve endings to sustain acetylcholine (ACh) release that is required to overcome tetanic neuromuscular depression in myasthenics. Using myographic recordings, measurements of evoked [(3)H]ACh release and real-time video microscopy with the FM4-64 fluorescent dye, results show that tonic activation of facilitatory A2A receptors by endogenous adenosine accumulated during 50 Hz bursts delivered to the rat phrenic nerve is essential for methylprednisolone (0.3 mM)-induced transmitter release facilitation, because its effect was prevented by the A2A receptor antagonist, ZM 241385 (10 nM). Concurrent activation of the positive feedback loop operated by pirenzepine-sensitive muscarinic M1 autoreceptors may also play a role, whereas the corticosteroid action is restrained by the activation of co-expressed inhibitory M2 and A1 receptors blocked by methoctramine (0.1 ?M) and DPCPX (2.5 nM), respectively. Inhibition of FM4-64 loading (endocytosis) by methylprednisolone following a brief tetanic stimulus (50 Hz for 5 s) suggests that it may negatively modulate synaptic vesicle turnover, thus increasing the release probability of newly recycled vesicles. Interestingly, bulk endocytosis was rehabilitated when methylprednisolone was co-applied with ZM241385. Data suggest that amplification of neuromuscular transmission by methylprednisolone may involve activation of presynaptic facilitatory adenosine A2A receptors by endogenous adenosine leading to synaptic vesicle redistribution. PMID:25220030

  9. Variation in response dynamics of regular and irregular vestibular-nerve afferents during sinusoidal head rotations and currents in the chinchilla

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Kyu-Sung; Minor, Lloyd B.; Della Santina, Charles; Lasker, David M.

    2014-01-01

    In mammals, primary vestibular afferents that innervate only type I hair cells (calyx-only afferents) respond nearly in phase with head acceleration for high-frequency motion, whereas afferents that innervate both type I and type II (dimorphic) or only type II (bouton-only) hair cells respond more in phase with head velocity. Afferents that exhibit irregular background firing rates have a larger phase lead re head velocity than those that fire more regularly. We wanted to examine what is the cause of the variation in phase lead between regular and irregular afferents at high frequency head rotations. Under the assumption that externally applied galvanic currents act directly on the nerve, we derived a transfer function describing the dynamics of a semicircular canal and its hair cells through comparison of responses to sinusoidally modulated head velocity and currents. All afferent responses were well fit with a transfer function with one zero (lead term). Best-fit lead terms describing responses to current for each group of afferents were similar to the lead term describing responses to head velocity for regular afferents (0.006s + 1). This shows that the pre synaptic/synaptic inputs to regular afferents are pure velocity transducers. However, the variation in phase lead between regular and irregular afferents cannot be explained solely by the ratio of type I to II hair cells (Baird et al. 1988) suggesting that the variation is caused by a combination of pre- (type of hair cell) and post- synaptic properties. PMID:21369854

  10. Virtual leak channels modulate firing dynamics and synaptic integration in rat sympathetic neurons: implications for ganglionic transmission in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Springer, Mitchell G; Kullmann, Paul H M; Horn, John P

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The excitability of rat sympathetic neurons and integration of nicotinic EPSPs were compared in primary cell culture and in the acutely isolated intact superior cervical ganglion using whole cell patch electrode recordings. When repetitive firing was classified by Hodgkin's criteria in cultured cells, 18% displayed tonic class 1 excitability, 36% displayed adapting class 2 excitability and 46% displayed phasic class 3 excitability. In the intact ganglion, 71% of cells were class 1 and 29% were class 2. This diverges from microelectrode reports that nearly 100% of superior cervical ganglion neurons show phasic class 3 firing. The hypothesis that the disparity between patch and microelectrode data arises from a shunt conductance was tested using the dynamic clamp in cell culture. Non-depolarizing shunts of 3–10 nS converted cells from classes 1 and 2 to class 3 dynamics with current–voltage relations that replicated microelectrode data. Primary and secondary EPSPs recorded from the intact superior cervical ganglion were modelled as virtual synapses in cell culture using the dynamic clamp. Stimulating sympathetic neurons with virtual synaptic activity, designed to replicate in vivo recordings of EPSPs in muscle vasoconstrictor neurons, produced a 2.4-fold amplification of presynaptic activity. This gain in postsynaptic output did not differ between neurons displaying the three classes of excitability. Mimicry of microelectrode damage by virtual leak channels reduced and eventually obliterated synaptic gain by inhibiting summation of subthreshold EPSPs. These results provide a framework for interpreting sympathetic activity recorded from intact animals and support the hypothesis that paravertebral ganglia function as activity-dependent amplifiers of spinal output from preganglionic circuitry. PMID:25398531

  11. Inhibitory effects of endomorphin-2 on excitatory synaptic transmission and the neuronal excitability of sacral parasympathetic preganglionic neurons in young rats

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ying-Biao; Huang, Fen-Sheng; Fen, Ban; Yin, Jun-Bin; Wang, Wei; Li, Yun-Qing

    2015-01-01

    The function of the urinary bladder is partly controlled by parasympathetic preganglionic neurons (PPNs) of the sacral parasympathetic nucleus (SPN). Our recent work demonstrated that endomorphin-2 (EM-2)-immunoreactive (IR) terminals form synapses with μ-opioid receptor (MOR)-expressing PPNs in the rat SPN. Here, we examined the effects of EM-2 on excitatory synaptic transmission and the neuronal excitability of the PPNs in young rats (24–30 days old) using a whole-cell patch-clamp approach. PPNs were identified by retrograde labeling with the fluorescent tracer tetramethylrhodamine-dextran (TMR). EM-2 (3 μM) markedly decreased both the amplitude and the frequency of the spontaneous and miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs and mEPSCs) of PPNs. EM-2 not only decreased the resting membrane potentials (RMPs) in 61.1% of the examined PPNs with half-maximal response at the concentration of 0.282 μM, but also increased the rheobase current and reduced the repetitive action potential firing of PPNs. Analysis of the current–voltage relationship revealed that the EM-2-induced current was reversed at −95 ± 2.5 mV and was suppressed by perfusion of the potassium channel blockers 4-aminopyridine (4-AP) or BaCl2 or by the addition of guanosine 5′-[β-thio]diphosphate trilithium salt (GDP-β-S) to the pipette solution, suggesting the involvement of the G-protein-coupled inwardly rectifying potassium (GIRK) channel. The above EM-2-invoked inhibitory effects were abolished by the MOR selective antagonist D-Phe-Cys-Tyr-D-Trp-Orn-Thr-Pen-Thr-NH2 (CTOP), indicating that the effects of EM-2 on PPNs were mediated by MOR via pre- and/or post-synaptic mechanisms. EM-2 activated pre- and post-synaptic MORs, inhibiting excitatory neurotransmitter release from the presynaptic terminals and decreasing the excitability of PPNs due to hyperpolarization of their membrane potentials, respectively. These inhibitory effects of EM-2 on PPNs at the spinal cord level may explain the mechanism of action of morphine treatment and morphine-induced bladder dysfunction in the clinic. PMID:26074773

  12. The involvement of P2Y12 receptors, NADPH oxidase, and lipid rafts in the action of extracellular ATP on synaptic transmission at the frog neuromuscular junction.

    PubMed

    Giniatullin, A; Petrov, A; Giniatullin, R

    2015-01-29

    Adenosine 5'-triphosphate (ATP) is the main co-transmitter accompanying the release of acetylcholine from motor nerve terminals. Previously, we revealed the direct inhibitory action of extracellular ATP on transmitter release via redox-dependent mechanism. However, the receptor mechanism of ATP action and ATP-induced sources of reactive oxygen sources (ROS) remained not fully understood. In the current study, using microelectrode recordings of synaptic currents from the frog neuromuscular junction, we analyzed the receptor subtype involved in synaptic action of ATP, receptor coupling to NADPH oxidase and potential location of ATP receptors within the lipid rafts. Using subtype-specific antagonists, we found that the P2Y13 blocker 2-[(2-chloro-5-nitrophenyl)azo]-5-hydroxy-6-methyl-3-[(phosphonooxy)methyl]-4-pyridinecarboxaldehyde did not prevent the depressant action of ATP. In contrast, the P2Y12 antagonist 2-methylthioadenosine 5'-monophosphate abolished the inhibitory action of ATP, suggesting the key role of P2Y12 receptors in ATP action. As the action of ATP is redox-dependent, we also tested potential involvement of the NADPH oxidase, known as a common inducer of ROS. The depressant action of extracellular ATP was significantly reduced by diphenyleneiodonium chloride and 4-(2-aminoethyl)-benzenesulfonyl fluoride hydrochloride, two structurally different inhibitors of NADPH oxidase, indicating that this enzyme indeed mediates the action of ATP. Since the location and activity of various receptors are often associated with lipid rafts, we next tested whether ATP-driven inhibition depends on lipid rafts. We found that the disruption of lipid rafts with methyl-beta-cyclodextrin reduced and largely delayed the action of ATP. Taken together, these data revealed key steps in the purinergic control of synaptic transmission via P2Y12 receptors associated with lipid rafts, and identified NADPH oxidase as the main source of ATP-induced inhibitory ROS at the neuromuscular junction. Our data suggest that the location of P2Y receptors in lipid rafts speeds up the modulatory effect of ATP. Uncovered mechanisms may contribute to motor dysfunctions and neuromuscular diseases associated with oxidative stress. PMID:25463521

  13. Embryonic stem cell-derived neurons as a cellular system to study gene function: lack of amyloid precursor proteins APP and APLP2 leads to defective synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Schrenk-Siemens, Katrin; Perez-Alcala, Siro; Richter, Jens; Lacroix, Emmanuel; Rahuel, Joseph; Korte, Martin; Müller, Ulrike; Barde, Yves-Alain; Bibel, Miriam

    2008-08-01

    The in vitro generation of uniform populations of neurons from mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs) provides a novel opportunity to study gene function in neurons. This is of particular interest when mutations lead to lethal in vivo phenotypes. Although the amyloid precursor protein (APP) and its proteolysis are regarded as key elements of the pathology of Alzheimer's disease, the physiological function of APP is not well understood and mice lacking App and the related gene Aplp2 die early postnatally without any obvious histopathological abnormalities. Here we show that glutamatergic neurons differentiated from ESCs lacking both genes reveal a decreased expression of the vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (VGLUT2) both at the mRNA and protein level, as well as a reduced uptake and/or release of glutamate. Blocking gamma-secretase cleavage of APP in wild-type neurons resulted in a similar decrease of VGLUT2 expression, whereas VGLUT2 levels could be restored in App-/-Aplp2-/- neurons by a construct encompassing the C-terminal intracellular domain of APP. Electrophysiological recordings of hippocampal organotypic slice cultures prepared from corresponding mutant mice corroborated these observations. Gene expression profiling and pathway analysis of the differentiated App-/-Aplp2-/- neurons identified dysregulation of additional genes involved in synaptic transmission pathways. Our results indicate a significant functional role of APP and amyloid precursor-like protein 2 (APLP2) in the development of synaptic function by the regulation of glutamatergic neurotransmission. Differentiation of ESCs into homogeneous populations thus represents a new opportunity to explore gene function and to dissect signaling pathways in neurons. Disclosure of potential conflicts of interest is found at the end of this article. PMID:18535156

  14. Synaptic transmission between end bulbs of Held and bushy cells in the cochlear nucleus of mice with a mutation in Otoferlin

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Samantha; Hwang, Youngdeok

    2014-01-01

    Mice that carry a mutation in a calcium binding domain of Otoferlin, the putative calcium sensor at hair cell synapses, have normal distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs), but auditory brain stem responses (ABRs) are absent. In mutant mice mechanotransduction is normal but transmission of acoustic information to the auditory pathway is blocked even before the onset of hearing. The cross-sectional area of the auditory nerve of mutant mice is reduced by 54%, and the volume of ventral cochlear nuclei is reduced by 46% relative to hearing control mice. While the tonotopic organization was not detectably changed in mutant mice, the axons to end bulbs of Held and the end bulbs themselves were smaller. In mutant mice bushy cells in the anteroventral cochlear nucleus (aVCN) have the electrophysiological hallmarks of control cells. Spontaneous miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) occur with similar frequencies and have similar shapes in deaf as in hearing animals, but they are 24% larger in deaf mice. Bushy cells in deaf mutant mice are contacted by ?2.6 auditory nerve fibers compared with ?2.0 in hearing control mice. Furthermore, each fiber delivers more synaptic current, on average 4.8 nA compared with 3.4 nA, in deaf versus hearing control mice. The quantal content of evoked EPSCs is not different between mutant and control mice; the increase in synaptic current delivered in mutant mice is accounted for by the increased response to the size of the quanta. Although responses to shocks presented at long intervals are larger in mutant mice, they depress more rapidly than in hearing control mice. PMID:25253474

  15. Mice lacking brain/kidney phosphate-activated glutaminase (GLS1) have impaired glutamatergic synaptic transmission, altered breathing, disorganized goal-directed behavior and die shortly after birth

    PubMed Central

    Masson, Justine; Darmon, Michèle; Conjard, Agnès; Chuhma, Nao; Ropert, Nicole; Thoby-Brisson, Muriel; Foutz, Arthur S.; Parrot, Sandrine; Miller, Gretchen M.; Jorisch, Renée; Polan, Jonathan; Hamon, Michel; Hen, René; Rayport, Stephen

    2009-01-01

    Neurotransmitter glutamate has been thought to derive mainly from glutamine via the action of glutaminase type 1 (GLS1). To address the importance of this pathway in glutamatergic transmission, we knocked out GLS1 in mice. The insertion of a STOP cassette by homologous recombination produced a null allele that blocked transcription, encoded no immunoreactive protein and abolished GLS1 enzymatic activity. Null mutants were slightly smaller, were deficient in goal-directed behavior, hypoventilated and died in the first post-natal day. No gross or microscopic defects were detected in peripheral organs or in the central nervous system. In cultured neurons from the null mutants, miniature EPSC amplitude and duration were normal; however, the amplitude of evoked EPSCs decayed more rapidly with sustained 10 Hz stimulation, consistent with an observed reduction in depolarization-evoked glutamate release. Because of this activity-dependent impairment in glutamatergic transmission, we surmised that respiratory networks, which require temporal summation of synaptic input, would be particularly affected. We found that the amplitude of inspirations was decreased in vivo, chemosensitivity to CO2 was severely altered, and the frequency of pacemaker activity recorded in the respiratory generator in the Pre-Bötzinger complex, a glutamatergic brainstem network that can be isolated in vitro, was increased. Our results show that while alternate pathways to GLS1 glutamate synthesis support baseline glutamatergic transmission, the GLS1 pathway is essential for maintaining the function of active synapses, and so the mutation is associated with impaired respiratory function, abnormal goal-directed behavior and neonatal demise. PMID:16641247

  16. ?-Opioid Receptor-Mediated Inhibition of Intercalated Neurons and Effect on Synaptic Transmission to the Central Amygdala

    PubMed Central

    Blaesse, Peter; Goedecke, Lena; Bazelot, Michaël; Capogna, Marco; Pape, Hans-Christian

    2015-01-01

    The amygdala is a key region for the processing of information underlying fear, anxiety, and fear extinction. Within the local neuronal networks of the amygdala, a population of inhibitory, intercalated neurons (ITCs) modulates the flow of information among various nuclei of amygdala, including the basal nucleus (BA) and the centromedial nucleus (CeM) of the amygdala. These ITCs have been shown to be important during fear extinction and are target of a variety of neurotransmitters and neuropeptides. Here we provide evidence that the activation of ?-opioid receptors (MORs) by the specific agonist DAMGO ([D-Ala2,N-Me-Phe4,Gly5-ol]-Enkephalin) hyperpolarizes medially located ITCs (mITCs) in acute brain slices of mice. Moreover, we use whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in combination with local electrical stimulation or glutamate uncaging to analyze the effect of MOR activation on local microcircuits. We show that the GABAergic transmission between mITCs and CeM neurons is attenuated by DAMGO, whereas the glutamatergic transmission on CeM neurons and mITCs is unaffected. Furthermore, MOR activation induced by theta burst stimulation in BA suppresses plastic changes of feedforward inhibitory transmission onto CeM neurons as revealed by the MOR antagonist CTAP d-Phe-Cys-Tyr-d-Trp-Arg-Thr-Pen-Thr-NH2. In summary, the mITCs constitute a target for the opioid system, and therefore, the activation of MOR in ITCs might play a central role in the modulation of the information processing between the basolateral complex of the amygdala and central nuclei of the amygdala. PMID:25972162

  17. Dopaminergic Presynaptic Modulation of Nigral Afferents: Its Role in the Generation of Recurrent Bursting in Substantia Nigra Pars Reticulata Neurons

    PubMed Central

    de Jesús Aceves, José; Rueda-Orozco, Pavel E.; Hernández, Ricardo; Plata, Víctor; Ibañez-Sandoval, Osvaldo; Galarraga, Elvira; Bargas, José

    2011-01-01

    Previous work has shown the functions associated with activation of dopamine presynaptic receptors in some substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr) afferents: (i) striatonigral terminals (direct pathway) posses presynaptic dopamine D1-class receptors whose action is to enhance inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) and GABA transmission. (ii) Subthalamonigral terminals posses D1- and D2-class receptors where D1-class receptor activation enhances and D2-class receptor activation decreases excitatory postsynaptic currents. Here we report that pallidonigral afferents posses D2-class receptors (D3 and D4 types) that decrease inhibitory synaptic transmission via presynaptic modulation. No action of D1-class agonists was found on pallidonigral synapses. In contrast, administration of D1-receptor antagonists greatly decreased striatonigral IPSCs in the same preparation, suggesting that tonic dopamine levels help in maintaining the function of the striatonigral (direct) pathway. When both D3 and D4 type receptors were blocked, pallidonigral IPSCs increased in amplitude while striatonigral connections had no significant change, suggesting that tonic dopamine levels are repressing a powerful inhibition conveyed by pallidonigral synapses (a branch of the indirect pathway). We then blocked both D1- and D2-class receptors to acutely decrease direct pathway (striatonigral) and enhance indirect pathways (subthalamonigral and pallidonigral) synaptic force. The result was that most SNr projection neurons entered a recurrent bursting firing mode similar to that observed during Parkinsonism in both patients and animal models. These results raise the question as to whether the lack of dopamine in basal ganglia output nuclei is enough to generate some pathological signs of Parkinsonism. PMID:21347219

  18. Region-specific impairments in striatal synaptic transmission and impaired instrumental learning in a mouse model of Angelman syndrome.

    PubMed

    Hayrapetyan, Volodya; Castro, Stephen; Sukharnikova, Tatyana; Yu, Chunxiu; Cao, Xinyu; Jiang, Yong-Hui; Yin, Henry H

    2014-03-01

    Angelman syndrome (AS) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by mental retardation and impaired speech. Because patients with this disorder often exhibit motor tremor and stereotypical behaviors, which are associated with basal ganglia pathology, we hypothesized that AS is accompanied by abnormal functioning of the striatum, the input nucleus of the basal ganglia. Using mutant mice with maternal deficiency of AS E6-AP ubiquitin protein ligase Ube3a (Ube3a(m-/p+) ), we assessed the effects of Ube3a deficiency on instrumental conditioning, a striatum-dependent task. We used whole-cell patch-clamp recording to measure glutamatergic transmission in the dorsomedial striatum (DMS) and dorsolateral striatum (DLS). Ube3a(m-/p+) mice were severely impaired in initial acquisition of lever pressing. Whereas the lever pressing of wild-type controls was reduced by outcome devaluation and instrumental contingency reversal, the performance of Ube3a(m-/p+) mice were more habitual, impervious to changes in outcome value and action-outcome contingency. In the DMS, but not the DLS, Ube3a(m-/p+) mice showed reduced amplitude and frequency of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents. These results show for the first time a selective deficit in instrumental conditioning in the Ube3a deficient mouse model, and suggest a specific impairment in glutmatergic transmission in the associative corticostriatal circuit in AS. PMID:24329862

  19. Transfer characteristics of the hair cell's afferent synapse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keen, Erica C.; Hudspeth, A. J.

    2006-04-01

    The sense of hearing depends on fast, finely graded neurotransmission at the ribbon synapses connecting hair cells to afferent nerve fibers. The processing that occurs at this first chemical synapse in the auditory pathway determines the quality and extent of the information conveyed to the central nervous system. Knowledge of the synapse's input-output function is therefore essential for understanding how auditory stimuli are encoded. To investigate the transfer function at the hair cell's synapse, we developed a preparation of the bullfrog's amphibian papilla. In the portion of this receptor organ representing stimuli of 400-800 Hz, each afferent nerve fiber forms several synaptic terminals onto one to three hair cells. By performing simultaneous voltage-clamp recordings from presynaptic hair cells and postsynaptic afferent fibers, we established that the rate of evoked vesicle release, as determined from the average postsynaptic current, depends linearly on the amplitude of the presynaptic Ca2+ current. This result implies that, for receptor potentials in the physiological range, the hair cell's synapse transmits information with high fidelity. auditory system | exocytosis | glutamate | ribbon synapse | synaptic vesicle

  20. Aberrant Synaptic Integration in Adult Lamina I Projection Neurons Following Neonatal Tissue Damage

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jie; Kritzer, Elizabeth; Craig, Paige E.

    2015-01-01

    Mounting evidence suggests that neonatal tissue damage evokes alterations in spinal pain reflexes which persist into adulthood. However, less is known about potential concomitant effects on the transmission of nociceptive information to the brain, as the degree to which early injury modulates synaptic integration and membrane excitability in mature spinal projection neurons remains unclear. Here we demonstrate that neonatal surgical injury leads to a significant shift in the balance between synaptic excitation and inhibition onto identified lamina I projection neurons of the adult mouse spinal cord. The strength of direct primary afferent input to mature spino-parabrachial neurons was enhanced following neonatal tissue damage, whereas the efficacy of both GABAergic and glycinergic inhibition onto the same population was compromised. This was accompanied by reorganization in the pattern of sensory input to adult projection neurons, which included a greater prevalence of monosynaptic input from low-threshold A-fibers when preceded by early tissue damage. In addition, neonatal incision resulted in greater primary afferent-evoked action potential discharge in mature projection neurons. Overall, these results demonstrate that tissue damage during early life causes a long-term increase in the gain of spinal nociceptive circuits, and suggest that the prolonged consequences of neonatal trauma may not be restricted to the spinal cord but rather include excessive ascending signaling to supraspinal pain centers. PMID:25673839

  1. Microbial Rhodopsin Optogenetic Tools: Application for Analyses of Synaptic Transmission and of Neuronal Network Activity in Behavior.

    PubMed

    Glock, Caspar; Nagpal, Jatin; Gottschalk, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    Optogenetics was introduced as a new technology in the neurosciences about a decade ago (Zemelman et al., Neuron 33:15-22, 2002; Boyden et al., Nat Neurosci 8:1263-1268, 2005; Nagel et al., Curr Biol 15:2279-2284, 2005; Zemelman et al., Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 100:1352-1357, 2003). It combines optics, genetics, and bioengineering to render neurons sensitive to light, in order to achieve a precise, exogenous, and noninvasive control of membrane potential, intracellular signaling, network activity, or behavior (Rein and Deussing, Mol Genet Genomics 287:95-109, 2012; Yizhar et al., Neuron 71:9-34, 2011). As C. elegans is transparent, genetically amenable, has a small nervous system mapped with synapse resolution, and exhibits a rich behavioral repertoire, it is especially open to optogenetic methods (White et al., Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci 314:1-340, 1986; De Bono et al., Optogenetic actuation, inhibition, modulation and readout for neuronal networks generating behavior in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, In: Hegemann P, Sigrist SJ (eds) Optogenetics, De Gruyter, Berlin, 2013; Husson et al., Biol Cell 105:235-250, 2013; Xu and Kim, Nat Rev Genet 12:793-801, 2011). Optogenetics, by now an "exploding" field, comprises a repertoire of different tools ranging from transgenically expressed photo-sensor proteins (Boyden et al., Nat Neurosci 8:1263-1268, 2005; Nagel et al., Curr Biol 15:2279-2284, 2005) or cascades (Zemelman et al., Neuron 33:15-22, 2002) to chemical biology approaches, using photochromic ligands of endogenous channels (Szobota et al., Neuron 54:535-545, 2007). Here, we will focus only on optogenetics utilizing microbial rhodopsins, as these are most easily and most widely applied in C. elegans. For other optogenetic tools, for example the photoactivated adenylyl cyclases (PACs, that drive neuronal activity by increasing synaptic vesicle priming, thus exaggerating rather than overriding the intrinsic activity of a neuron, as occurs with rhodopsins), we refer to other literature (Weissenberger et al., J Neurochem 116:616-625, 2011; Steuer Costa et al., Photoactivated adenylyl cyclases as optogenetic modulators of neuronal activity, In: Cambridge S (ed) Photswitching proteins, Springer, New York, 2014). In this chapter, we will give an overview of rhodopsin-based optogenetic tools, their properties and function, as well as their combination with genetically encoded indicators of neuronal activity. As there is not "the" single optogenetic experiment we could describe here, we will focus more on general concepts and "dos and don'ts" when designing an optogenetic experiment. We will also give some guidelines on which hardware to use, and then describe a typical example of an optogenetic experiment to analyze the function of the neuromuscular junction, and another application, which is Ca(2+) imaging in body wall muscle, with upstream neuronal excitation using optogenetic stimulation. To obtain a more general overview of optogenetics and optogenetic tools, we refer the reader to an extensive collection of review articles, and in particular to volume 1148 of this book series, "Photoswitching Proteins." PMID:26423970

  2. Analysis of Mutations in 7 Genes Associated with Neuronal Excitability and Synaptic Transmission in a Cohort of Children with Non-Syndromic Infantile Epileptic Encephalopathy

    PubMed Central

    Kwong, Anna Ka-Yee; Ho, Alvin Chi-Chung; Fung, Cheuk-Wing; Wong, Virginia Chun-Nei

    2015-01-01

    Epileptic Encephalopathy (EE) is a heterogeneous condition in which cognitive, sensory and/or motor functions deteriorate as a consequence of epileptic activity, which consists of frequent seizures and/or major interictal paroxysmal activity. There are various causes of EE and they may occur at any age in early childhood. Genetic mutations have been identified to contribute to an increasing number of children with early onset EE which had been previously considered as cryptogenic. We identified 26 patients with Infantile Epileptic Encephalopathy (IEE) of unknown etiology despite extensive workup and without any specific epilepsy syndromic phenotypes. We performed genetic analysis on a panel of 7 genes (ARX, CDKL5, KCNQ2, PCDH19, SCN1A, SCN2A, STXBP1) and identified 10 point mutations [ARX (1), CDKL5 (3), KCNQ2 (2), PCDH19 (1), SCN1A (1), STXBP1 (2)] as well as one microdeletion involving both SCN1A and SCN2A. The high rate (42%) of mutations suggested that genetic testing of this IEE panel of genes is recommended for cryptogenic IEE with no etiology identified. These 7 genes are associated with channelopathies or synaptic transmission and we recommend early genetic testing if possible to guide the treatment strategy. PMID:25951140

  3. Blockade of presynaptic 4-aminopyridine-sensitive potassium channels increases initial neurotransmitter release probability, reinstates synaptic transmission altered by GABAB receptor activation in rat midbrain periaqueductal gray.

    PubMed

    Li, Guangying; Liu, Zhi-Liang; Zhang, Wei-Ning; Yang, Kun

    2016-01-01

    The activation of ?-aminobutyric acid receptor subtype B (GABAB) receptors in the midbrain ventrolateral periaqueductal gray (vlPAG) induces both postsynaptic and presynaptic inhibition. Whereas the postsynaptic inhibition is mediated by G protein-coupled inwardly rectifying K channels, the presynaptic inhibition of neurotransmitter release is primarily mediated by voltage-gated calcium channels. Using whole-cell recordings from acute rat PAG slices, we report here that the bath application of 4-aminopyridine, a voltage-gated K channel blocker, increases the initial GABA and glutamate release probability (P) and reinstates P depressed by presynaptic GABAB receptor activation at inhibitory and excitatory synapses, respectively. However, Ba, which blocks G protein-coupled inwardly rectifying K channels, does not produce similar effects. Our data suggest that the blockade of presynaptic 4-aminopyridine-sensitive K channels in vlPAG facilitates neurotransmitter release and reinstates synaptic transmission that has been altered by presynaptic GABAB receptor activation. Because vlPAG is involved in the descending pain control system, the present results may have potential therapeutic applications. PMID:26575285

  4. 5-HT2 receptors mediate functional modulation of GABAa receptors and inhibitory synaptic transmissions in human iPS-derived neurons.

    PubMed

    Wang, Haitao; Hu, Lingli; Liu, Chunhua; Su, Zhenghui; Wang, Lihui; Pan, Guangjin; Guo, Yiping; He, Jufang

    2016-01-01

    Neural progenitors differentiated from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) hold potentials for treating neurological diseases. Serotonin has potent effects on neuronal functions through multiple receptors, underlying a variety of neural disorders. Glutamate and GABA receptors have been proven functional in neurons differentiated from iPS, however, little is known about 5-HT receptor-mediated modulation in such neuronal networks. In the present study, human iPS were differentiated into cells possessing featured physiological properties of cortical neurons. Whole-cell patch-clamp recording was used to examine the involvement of 5-HT2 receptors in functional modulation of GABAergic synaptic transmission. We found that serotonin and DOI (a selective agonist of 5-HT2A/C receptor) reversibly reduced GABA-activated currents, and this 5-HT2A/C receptor mediated inhibition required G protein, PLC, PKC, and Ca(2+) signaling. Serotonin increased the frequency of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs), which could be mimicked by α-methylserotonin, a 5-HT2 receptor agonist. In contrast, DOI reduced both frequency and amplitude of mIPSCs. These findings suggested that in iPS-derived human neurons serotonin postsynaptically reduced GABAa receptor function through 5-HT2A/C receptors, but presynaptically other 5-HT2 receptors counteracted the action of 5-HT2A/C receptors. Functional expression of serotonin receptors in human iPS-derived neurons provides a pre-requisite for their normal behaviors after grafting. PMID:26837719

  5. Long-term depression of inhibitory synaptic transmission induced by spike-timing dependent plasticity requires coactivation of endocannabinoid and muscarinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Ahumada, Juan; Fernández de Sevilla, David; Couve, Alejandro; Buño, Washington; Fuenzalida, Marco

    2013-12-01

    The precise timing of pre-postsynaptic activity is vital for the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP) or depression (LTD) at many central synapses. We show in synapses of rat CA1 pyramidal neurons in vitro that spike timing dependent plasticity (STDP) protocols that induce LTP at glutamatergic synapses can evoke LTD of inhibitory postsynaptic currents or STDP-iLTD. The STDP-iLTD requires a postsynaptic Ca(2+) increase, a release of endocannabinoids (eCBs), the activation of type-1 endocananabinoid receptors and presynaptic muscarinic receptors that mediate a decreased probability of GABA release. In contrast, the STDP-iLTD is independent of the activation of nicotinic receptors, GABAB Rs and G protein-coupled postsynaptic receptors at pyramidal neurons. We determine that the downregulation of presynaptic Cyclic adenosine monophosphate/protein Kinase A pathways is essential for the induction of STDP-iLTD. These results suggest a novel mechanism by which the activation of cholinergic neurons and retrograde signaling by eCBs can modulate the efficacy of GABAergic synaptic transmission in ways that may contribute to information processing and storage in the hippocampus. PMID:23966210

  6. 5-HT2 receptors mediate functional modulation of GABAa receptors and inhibitory synaptic transmissions in human iPS-derived neurons

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Haitao; Hu, Lingli; Liu, Chunhua; Su, Zhenghui; Wang, Lihui; Pan, Guangjin; Guo, Yiping; He, Jufang

    2016-01-01

    Neural progenitors differentiated from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) hold potentials for treating neurological diseases. Serotonin has potent effects on neuronal functions through multiple receptors, underlying a variety of neural disorders. Glutamate and GABA receptors have been proven functional in neurons differentiated from iPS, however, little is known about 5-HT receptor-mediated modulation in such neuronal networks. In the present study, human iPS were differentiated into cells possessing featured physiological properties of cortical neurons. Whole-cell patch-clamp recording was used to examine the involvement of 5-HT2 receptors in functional modulation of GABAergic synaptic transmission. We found that serotonin and DOI (a selective agonist of 5-HT2A/C receptor) reversibly reduced GABA-activated currents, and this 5-HT2A/C receptor mediated inhibition required G protein, PLC, PKC, and Ca2+ signaling. Serotonin increased the frequency of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs), which could be mimicked by α-methylserotonin, a 5-HT2 receptor agonist. In contrast, DOI reduced both frequency and amplitude of mIPSCs. These findings suggested that in iPS-derived human neurons serotonin postsynaptically reduced GABAa receptor function through 5-HT2A/C receptors, but presynaptically other 5-HT2 receptors counteracted the action of 5-HT2A/C receptors. Functional expression of serotonin receptors in human iPS-derived neurons provides a pre-requisite for their normal behaviors after grafting. PMID:26837719

  7. Central projections and entries of capsaicin-sensitive muscle afferents.

    PubMed

    Della Torre, G; Lucchi, M L; Brunetti, O; Pettorossi, V E; Clavenzani, P; Bortolami, R

    1996-03-25

    The entry pathway and central distribution of A delta and C muscle afferents within the central nervous system (CNS) were investigated by combining electron microscopy and electrophysiological analysis after intramuscular injection of capsaicin. The drug was injected into the rat lateral gastrocnemius (LG) and extraocular (EO) muscles. The compound action potentials of LG nerve and the evoked field potentials recorded in semilunar ganglion showed an immediate and permanent reduction in A delta and C components. The morphological data revealed degenerating unmyelinated axons and terminals in the inner sublamina II and in the border of laminae I-II of the dorsal horn at L4-L5 and C1-C2 (subnucleus caudalis trigemini) spinal cord segments. Most degenerating terminals were the central bouton (C) of type I and II synaptic glomeruli. Furthermore, degenerating peripheral axonal endings (V2) presynaptic to normal C were found. Since V2 were previously found degenerated after cutting the oculomotor nerve (ON) or L4 ventral root, we conclude that some A delta and C afferents from LG and EO muscles entering the CNS by ON or ventral roots make axoaxonic synapses on other primary afferents to promote an afferent control of sensory input. PMID:8724994

  8. Peripheral innervation patterns of vestibular nerve afferents in the bullfrog utriculus.

    PubMed

    Baird, R A; Schuff, N R

    1994-04-01

    Vestibular nerve afferents innervating the bullfrog utriculus differ in their response dynamics and sensitivity to natural stimulation. They also supply hair cells that differ markedly in hair bundle morphology. To examine the peripheral innervation patterns of individual utricular afferents more closely, afferent fibers were labeled by the extracellular injection of horseradish peroxidase (HRP) into the vestibular nerve after sectioning the vestibular nerve medial to Scarpa's ganglion to allow the degeneration of sympathetic and efferent fibers. The peripheral arborizations of individual afferents were then correlated with the diameters of their parent axons, the regions of the macula they innervate, and the number and type of hair cells they supply. The utriculus is divided by the striola, a narrow zone of distinctive morphology, into medial and lateral parts. Utricular afferents were classified as striolar or extrastriolar according to the epithelial entrance of their parent axons and the location of their terminal fields. In general, striolar afferents had thicker parent axons, fewer subepithelial bifurcations, larger terminal fields, and more synaptic endings than afferents in extrastriolar regions. Afferents in a juxtastriolar zone, immediately adjacent to the medial striola, had innervation patterns transitional between those in the striola and more peripheral parts of the medial extrastriola. Most afferents innervated only a single macular zone. The terminal fields of striolar afferents, with the notable exception of a few afferents with thin parent axons, were generally confined to one side of the striola. Hair cells in the bullfrog utriculus have previously been classified into four types based on hair bundle morphology (Lewis and Li: Brain Res. 83:35-50, 1975). Afferents in the extrastriolar and juxtastriolar zones largely or exclusively innervated Type B hair cells, the predominant hair cell type in the utricular macula. Striolar afferents supplied a mixture of four hair cell types, but largely contacted Type B and Type C hair cells, particularly on the outer rows of the medial striola. Afferents supplying more central striolar regions innervated fewer Type B and large numbers of Type E and Type F hair cells. Striolar afferents with thin parent axons largely supplied Type E hair cells with bulbed kinocilia in the innermost striolar rows. PMID:8201035

  9. Peripheral innervation patterns of vestibular nerve afferents in the bullfrog utriculus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baird, Richard A.; Schuff, N. R.

    1994-01-01

    Vestibular nerve afferents innervating the bullfrog utriculus differ in their response dynamics and sensitivity to natural stimulation. They also supply hair cells that differ markedly in hair bundle morphology. To examine the peripheral innervation patterns of individual utricular afferents more closely, afferent fibers were labeled by the extracellular injection of horseradish peroxidase (HRP) into the vestibular nerve after sectioning the vestibular nerve medial to Scarpa's ganglion to allow the degeneration of sympathetic and efferent fibers. The peripheral arborizations of individual afferents were then correlated with the diameters of their parent axons, the regions of the macula they innervate, and the number and type of hair cells they supply. The utriculus is divided by the striola, a narrow zone of distinctive morphology, into media and lateral parts. Utiricular afferents were classified as striolar or extrastriolar according to the epithelial entrance of their parent axons and the location of their terminal fields. In general, striolar afferents had thicker parent axons, fewer subepithelial bifurcations, larger terminal fields, and more synaptic endings than afferents in extrstriolar regions. Afferents in a juxtastriolar zone, immediately adjacent to the medial striola, had innervation patterns transitional between those in the striola and more peripheral parts of the medial extrastriola. moast afferents innervated only a single macular zone. The terminal fields of striolar afferents, with the notable exception of a few afferents with thin parent axons, were generally confined to one side of the striola. Hair cells in the bullfrog utriculus have perviously been classified into four types based on hair bundle morphology. Afferents in the extrastriolar and juxtastriolar zones largely or exclusively innervated Type B hair cells, the predominant hair cell type in the utricular macula. Striolar afferents supplied a mixture of four hair cell types, but largely contacted Type B and Type C hair cells, particularly on the outer rows of the medial striola. Afferents supplying more central striolar regions innervated fewer Type B and larger numbers of Type E and Type F hair cells. Striolar afferents with thin parent axons largely supplied Type E hair cells with bulbed kniocilia in the innermost striolar rows.

  10. Changes of cholinergic, noradrenergic and serotonergic synaptic transmission indices elicited by ethylcholine aziridinium ion (AF64A) infused intraventricularly.

    PubMed

    Eva, C; Fabrazzo, M; Costa, E

    1987-04-01

    Bilateral (3 nmol/side) i.c.v. infusion of ethylcholine aziridinium ion (AF64A) causes a 70% decrease of hippocampal acetylcholine content lasting for longer than 30 days without changing the density of hippocampal recognition sites for muscarinic ligands. In hippocampal slices prepared from rats receiving i.c.v. AF64A, the activation of phosphoinositide turnover or the inhibition of cyclic AMP accumulation elicited by muscarinic receptor agonists is facilitated. This AF64A treatment also causes a long-lasting decrease of hippocampal norepinephrine and serotonin (5-HT) content. Even a smaller dose of AF64A (1.5 nmol/side) reduces the hippocampal 5-HT content. The number of alpha-1 adrenoceptor recognition sites is slightly increased by 3 nmol/side of AF64A and the stimulation of phosphoinositide turnover by norepinephrine is facilitated. In contrast the decrease of hippocampal 5-HT concentration elicited by AF64A fails to change the 5-HT receptor indices that were measured. These results indicate that in rat hippocampus muscarinic receptors and alpha-1 adrenoceptors are denervated by AF64A and that this denervation promotes a receptor supersensitivity. These results also suggest that we could not find appropriate conditions to express a complete specificity of AF64A in destroying cholinergic axons and therefore this drug cannot be used readily to induce a selective deficiency of central cholinergic transmission. PMID:2437288

  11. High Frequency Stimulation of the Subthalamic Nucleus Leads to Presynaptic GABA(B)-Dependent Depression of Subthalamo-Nigral Afferents

    PubMed Central

    Dvorzhak, Anton; Gertler, Christoph; Harnack, Daniel; Grantyn, Rosemarie

    2013-01-01

    Patients with akinesia benefit from chronic high frequency stimulation (HFS) of the subthalamic nucleus (STN). Among the mechanisms contributing to the therapeutic success of HFS-STN might be a suppression of activity in the output region of the basal ganglia. Indeed, recordings in the substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr) of fully adult mice revealed that HFS-STN consistently produced a reduction of compound glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic currents at a time when the tetrodotoxin-sensitive components of the local field potentials had already recovered after the high frequency activation. These observations suggest that HFS-STN not only alters action potential conduction on the way towards the SNr but also modifies synaptic transmission within the SNr. A classical conditioning-test paradigm was then designed to better separate the causes from the indicators of synaptic depression. A bipolar platinum-iridium macroelectrode delivered conditioning HFS trains to a larger group of fibers in the STN, while a separate high-ohmic glass micropipette in the rostral SNr provided test stimuli at minimal intensity to single fibers. The conditioning-test interval was set to 100 ms, i.e. the time required to recover the excitability of subthalamo-nigral axons after HFS-STN. The continuity of STN axons passing from the conditioning to the test sites was examined by an action potential occlusion test. About two thirds of the subthalamo-nigral afferents were occlusion-negative, i.e. they were not among the fibers directly activated by the conditioning STN stimulation. Nonetheless, occlusion-negative afferents exhibited signs of presynaptic depression that could be eliminated by blocking GABA(B) receptors with CGP55845 (1 µM). Further analysis of single fiber-activated responses supported the proposal that the heterosynaptic depression of synaptic glutamate release during and after HFS-STN is mainly caused by the tonic release of GABA from co-activated striato-nigral afferents to the SNr. This mechanism would be consistent with a gain-of-function hypothesis of DBS. PMID:24376521

  12. Differential sensitivity of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission to modulation by nitric oxide in rat nucleus tractus solitarii.

    PubMed

    Wang, Sheng; Paton, Julian F R; Kasparov, Sergey

    2007-03-01

    The nucleus tractus solitarii (NTS) is a key central link in control of multiple homeostatic reflexes. A number of studies have demonstrated that exogenous and endogenous nitric oxide (NO) within NTS regulates visceral function, but further understanding of the role of NO in the NTS is hampered by the lack of information about its intracellular actions. We studied effects of NO in acute rat brainstem slices. Aqueous NO solution (NO(aq)) potentiated electrically evoked excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs and IPSPs, respectively) in different neuronal subpopulations and, in some neurones, caused a depolarization. Similar effects were observed using the NO donor diethylamine NONOate (DEA/NO). The threshold NO concentration as determined using an NO electrochemical sensor was estimated as approximately 0.4 nm (EC(50) approximately 0.9 nm) for potentiating glutamatergic EPSPs but approximately 3 nm for monosynaptic GABAergic IPSPs. Bath application of the soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC) inhibitor 1H-[1,2,4]oxadiazolo[4,3-a]quinoxalin-1-one (ODQ) abolished NO(aq)- and DEA/NO-induced potentiation of evoked EPSPs, IPSPs and depolarization. All NO actions were mimicked by the non-NO-dependent guanylate cyclase activator Bay 41-2272. The effects of NO on EPSPs and IPSPs persisted in cells where postsynaptic sGC was blocked by ODQ and therefore were presynaptic, owing to a direct modulation of transmitter release combined with depolarization of presynaptic neurones. Therefore, while lower concentrations of NO may be important for fine tuning of glutamatergic transmission, higher concentrations are required to directly engage GABAergic inhibition. This differential sensitivity of excitatory and inhibitory connections to NO may be important for determining the specificity of the effects of this freely diffusible gaseous messenger. PMID:17138620

  13. Differential effects of opioids on sacrocaudal afferent pathways and central pattern generators in the neonatal rat spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Blivis, D; Mentis, G Z; O'donovan, M J; Lev-Tov, A

    2007-04-01

    The effects of opioids on sacrocaudal afferent (SCA) pathways and the pattern-generating circuitry of the thoracolumbar and sacrocaudal segments of the spinal cord were studied in isolated spinal cord and brain stem-spinal cord preparations of the neonatal rat. The locomotor and tail moving rhythm produced by activation of nociceptive and nonnociceptive sacrocaudal afferents was completely blocked by specific application of the mu-opioid receptor agonist [d-Ala(2), N-Me-Phe(4), Gly(5)-ol]-enkephalin acetate salt (DAMGO) to the sacrocaudal but not the thoracolumbar segments of the spinal cord. The rhythmic activity could be restored after addition of the opioid receptor antagonist naloxone to the experimental chamber. The opioid block of the SCA-induced rhythm is not due to impaired rhythmogenic capacity of the spinal cord because a robust rhythmic activity could be initiated in the thoracolumbar and sacrocaudal segments in the presence of DAMGO, either by stimulation of the ventromedial medulla or by bath application of N-methyl-d-aspartate/serotonin. We suggest that the opioid block of the SCA-induced rhythm involves suppression of synaptic transmission through sacrocaudal interneurons interposed between SCA and the pattern-generating circuitry. The expression of mu opioid receptors in several groups of dorsal, intermediate and ventral horn interneurons in the sacrocaudal segments of the cord, documented in this study, provides an anatomical basis for this suggestion. PMID:17287435

  14. Synaptic Effects Induced by Alcohol

    PubMed Central

    Roberto, Marisa

    2016-01-01

    Ethanol (EtOH) has effects on numerous cellular molecular targets, and alterations in synaptic function are prominent among these effects. Acute exposure to EtOH activates or inhibits the function of proteins involved in synaptic transmission, while chronic exposure often produces opposing and/or compensatory/homeostatic effects on the expression, localization, and function of these proteins. Interactions between different neurotransmitters (e.g., neuropeptide effects on release of small molecule transmitters) can also influence both acute and chronic EtOH actions. Studies in intact animals indicate that the proteins affected by EtOH also play roles in the neural actions of the drug, including acute intoxication, tolerance, dependence, and the seeking and drinking of EtOH. This chapter reviews the literature describing these acute and chronic synaptic effects of EtOH and their relevance for synaptic transmission, plasticity, and behavior. PMID:21786203

  15. Thyroid hormone is required for pruning, functioning and long-term maintenance of afferent inner hair cell synapses.

    PubMed

    Sundaresan, Srividya; Kong, Jee-Hyun; Fang, Qing; Salles, Felipe T; Wangsawihardja, Felix; Ricci, Anthony J; Mustapha, Mirna

    2016-01-01

    Functional maturation of afferent synaptic connections to inner hair cells (IHCs) involves pruning of excess synapses formed during development, as well as the strengthening and survival of the retained synapses. These events take place during the thyroid hormone (TH)-critical period of cochlear development, which is in the perinatal period for mice and in the third trimester for humans. Here, we used the hypothyroid Snell dwarf mouse (Pit1(dw) ) as a model to study the role of TH in afferent type I synaptic refinement and functional maturation. We observed defects in afferent synaptic pruning and delays in calcium channel clustering in the IHCs of Pit1(dw) mice. Nevertheless, calcium currents and capacitance reached near normal levels in Pit1(dw) IHCs by the age of onset of hearing, despite the excess number of retained synapses. We restored normal synaptic pruning in Pit1(dw) IHCs by supplementing with TH from postnatal day (P)3 to P8, establishing this window as being critical for TH action on this process. Afferent terminals of older Pit1(dw) IHCs showed evidence of excitotoxic damage accompanied by a concomitant reduction in the levels of the glial glutamate transporter, GLAST. Our results indicate that a lack of TH during a critical period of inner ear development causes defects in pruning and long-term homeostatic maintenance of afferent synapses. PMID:26386265

  16. Thyroid hormone is required for pruning, functioning and long-term maintenance of afferent inner hair cell synapses

    PubMed Central

    Sundaresan, Srividya; Kong, Jee-Hyun; Fang, Qing; Salles, Felipe T.; Wangsawihardja, Felix; Ricci, Anthony J.; Mustapha, Mirna

    2016-01-01

    Functional maturation of afferent synaptic connections to inner hair cells (IHCs) involves pruning of excess synapses formed during development, as well as the strengthening and survival of the retained synapses. These events take place during the thyroid hormone (TH)-critical period of cochlear development, which is in the perinatal period for mice and in the third trimester for humans. Here, we used the hypothyroid Snell dwarf mouse (Pit1dw) as a model to study the role of TH in afferent type I synaptic refinement and functional maturation. We observed defects in afferent synaptic pruning and delays in calcium channel clustering in the IHCs of Pit1dw mice. Nevertheless, calcium currents and capacitance reached near normal levels in Pit1dw IHCs by the age of onset of hearing, despite the excess number of retained synapses. We restored normal synaptic pruning in Pit1dw IHCs by supplementing with TH from postnatal day (P)3 to P8, establishing this window as being critical for TH action on this process. Afferent terminals of older Pit1dw IHCs showed evidence of excitotoxic damage accompanied by a concomitant reduction in the levels of the glial glutamate transporter, GLAST. Our results indicate that a lack of TH during a critical period of inner ear development causes defects in pruning and long-term homeostatic maintenance of afferent synapses. PMID:26386265

  17. The role of gamma-aminobutyric acid/glycinergic synaptic transmission in mediating bilirubin-induced hyperexcitation in developing auditory neurons.

    PubMed

    Yin, Xin-Lu; Liang, Min; Shi, Hai-Bo; Wang, Lu-Yang; Li, Chun-Yan; Yin, Shan-Kai

    2016-01-01

    Hyperbilirubinemia is a common clinical phenomenon observed in human newborns. A high level of bilirubin can result in severe jaundice and bilirubin encephalopathy. However, the cellular mechanisms underlying bilirubin excitotoxicity are unclear. Our previous studies showed the action of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)/glycine switches from excitatory to inhibitory during development in the ventral cochlear nucleus (VCN), one of the most sensitive auditory nuclei to bilirubin toxicity. In the present study, we investigated the roles of GABAA/glycine receptors in the induction of bilirubin hyperexcitation in early developing neurons. Using the patch clamp technique, GABAA/glycine receptor-mediated spontaneous inhibitory synaptic currents (sIPSCs) were recorded from bushy and stellate cells in acute brainstem slices from young mice (postnatal day 2-6). Bilirubin significantly increased the frequency of sIPSCs, and this effect was prevented by pretreatments of slices with either fast or slow Ca(2+) chelators BAPTA-AM and EGTA-AM suggesting that bilirubin can increase the release of GABA/glycine via Ca(2+)-dependent mechanisms. Using cell-attached recording configuration, we found that antagonists of GABAA and glycine receptors strongly attenuated spontaneous spiking firings in P2-6 neurons but produced opposite effect in P15-19 neurons. Furthermore, these antagonists reversed bilirubin-evoked hyperexcitability in P2-6 neurons, indicating that excitatory action of GABA/glycinergic transmission specifically contribute to bilirubin-induced hyperexcitability in the early stage of development. Our results suggest that bilirubin-induced enhancement of presynaptic release GABA/Glycine via Ca(2+)-dependent mechanisms may play a critical role in mediating neuronal hyperexcitation associated with jaundice, implicating potential new strategies for predicting, preventing, and treating bilirubin neurotoxicity. PMID:26476400

  18. Vanilloids selectively sensitize thermal glutamate release from TRPV1 expressing solitary tract afferents.

    PubMed

    Hofmann, Mackenzie E; Andresen, Michael C

    2016-02-01

    Vanilloids, high temperature, and low pH activate the transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) receptor. In spinal dorsal root ganglia, co-activation of one of these gating sites on TRPV1 sensitized receptor gating by other modes. Here in rat brainstem slices, we examined glutamate synaptic transmission in nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) neurons where most cranial primary afferents express TRPV1, but TRPV1 sensitization is unknown. Electrical shocks to the solitary tract (ST) evoked EPSCs (ST-EPSCs). Activation of TRPV1 with capsaicin (100 nM) increased spontaneous EPSCs (sEPSCs) but inhibited ST-EPSCs. High concentrations of the ultra-potent vanilloid resiniferatoxin (RTX, 1 nM) similarly increased sEPSC rates but blocked ST-EPSCs. Lowering the RTX concentration to 150 pM modestly increased the frequency of the sEPSCs without causing failures in the evoked ST-EPSCs. The sEPSC rate increased with raising bath temperature to 36 °C. Such thermal responses were larger in 150 pM RTX, while the ST-EPSCs remained unaffected. Vanilloid sensitization of thermal responses persisted in TTX but was blocked by the TRPV1 antagonist capsazepine. Our results demonstrate that multimodal activation of TRPV1 facilitates sEPSC responses in more than the arithmetic sum of the two activators, i.e. co-activation sensitizes TRPV1 control of spontaneous glutamate release. Since action potential evoked glutamate release is unaltered, the work provides evidence for cooperativity in gating TRPV1 plus a remarkable separation of calcium mechanisms governing the independent vesicle pools responsible for spontaneous and evoked release at primary afferents in the NTS. PMID:26471418

  19. Vagal afferent modulation of nociception.

    PubMed

    Randich, A; Gebhart, G F

    1992-01-01

    Chemical, electrical or physiological activation of cardiopulmonary vagal (cervical, thoracic or cardiac), diaphragmatic vagal (DVAG) or subdiaphragmatic vagal (SDVAG) afferents can result in either facilitation or inhibition of nociception in some species. In the rat, these effects depend upon vagal afferent input to the NTS and subsequent CNS relays, primarily in the NRM and ventral LC/SC, although specific relay nuclei vary as a function of the vagal challenge stimulus. Spinal pathways and neurotransmitters have been identified for vagally mediated effects on nociception and consistently implicate the involvement of descending 5-HT and noradrenergic systems, as well as intrinsic spinal opioid receptors. Species differences may exist with respect to both the effects of DVAG and SDVAG afferents on nociception and the efficacy of vagal afferents to modulate nociception. However, it is also possible that such differences reflect the modality of noxious input (e.g., visceral versus cutaneous), the type of neuronal activity investigated (e.g., resting versus noxious-evoked), spinal location of recording (e.g., thoracic versus lumbosacral) and/or parameters of stimulation. It is also possible that activation of some vagal afferents is aversive, but whether this contributes to changes in nociception produced by vagal activation has not clearly been established. Finally, the vagal-nociceptive networks described in this review provide a fertile area for future study. These networks can provide an understanding of physiological and pathophysiological peripheral events that affect nociception. PMID:1327371

  20. Impaired synaptic clustering of postsynaptic density proteins and altered signal transmission in hippocampal neurons, and disrupted learning behavior in PDZ1 and PDZ2 ligand binding-deficient PSD-95 knockin mice

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Postsynaptic density (PSD)-95-like membrane-associated guanylate kinases (PSD-MAGUKs) are scaffold proteins in PSDs that cluster signaling molecules near NMDA receptors. PSD-MAGUKs share a common domain structure, including three PDZ (PDZ1/2/3) domains in their N-terminus. While multiple domains enable the PSD-MAGUKs to bind various ligands, the contribution of each PDZ domain to synaptic organization and function is not fully understood. Here, we focused on the PDZ1/2 domains of PSD-95 that bind NMDA-type receptors, and studied the specific roles of the ligand binding of these domains in the assembly of PSD proteins, synaptic properties of hippocampal neurons, and behavior, using ligand binding-deficient PSD-95 cDNA knockin (KI) mice. Results The KI mice showed decreased accumulation of mutant PSD-95, PSD-93 and AMPA receptor subunits in the PSD fraction of the hippocampus. In the hippocampal CA1 region of young KI mice, basal synaptic efficacy was reduced and long-term potentiation (LTP) was enhanced with intact long-term depression. In adult KI mice, there was no significant change in the magnitude of LTP in CA1, but robustly enhanced LTP was induced at the medial perforant path-dentate gyrus synapses, suggesting that PSD-95 has an age- and subregion-dependent role. In a battery of behavioral tests, KI mice showed markedly abnormal anxiety-like behavior, impaired spatial reference and working memory, and impaired remote memory and pattern separation in fear conditioning test. Conclusions These findings reveal that PSD-95 including its ligand binding of the PDZ1/2 domains controls the synaptic clustering of PSD-MAGUKs and AMPA receptors, which may have an essential role in regulating hippocampal synaptic transmission, plasticity, and hippocampus-dependent behavior. PMID:23268962

  1. The afferent volleys responsible for spinal proprioceptive reflexes in man

    PubMed Central

    Burke, David; Gandevia, Simon C.; McKeon, Brian

    1983-01-01

    1. To define the neural volleys responsible for the Achilles tendon jerk and the H reflex, muscle afferent activity was recorded using micro-electrodes inserted percutaneously into appropriate fascicles of the tibial nerve in the popliteal fossa. 2. The response of soleus muscle afferents to tendon percussion consisted of a dispersed volley, starting 3·5-7·0 ms after percussion, increasing to a peak over 6·5-11·0 ms, and lasting 25-30 ms, depending on the strength of percussion. Electrical stimuli to the sciatic nerve at a level adequate to evoke an H reflex but subthreshold for the M wave produced a more synchronized volley, the fastest fibres of which had conduction velocities of 62-67 m/s, and the slowest 36-45 m/s. 3. The wave of acceleration produced by percussion subthreshold for the ankle jerk spread along the skin at over 150 m/s. Midway between the bellies of the gastrocnemii it consisted of a damped oscillation with four to five separate phases and maximum amplitude approximately one-twentieth of that recorded on the Achilles tendon. 4. With ten primary spindle endings, tendon percussion subthreshold for the ankle jerk elicited two to five spike discharges per tap, the shortest interspike intervals being 4-7 ms. Tendon percussion elicited single discharges from two Golgi tendon organs, and altered the discharge pattern of a single secondary spindle ending. The degree of dispersion of the multi-unit muscle afferent volley can be explained by the pattern of discharge of primary spindle endings. 5. Percussion on the Achilles tendon evoked crisp afferent volleys in recordings from nerve fascicles innervating flexor hallucis longus, tibialis posterior, the intrinsic muscles of the foot and the skin of the foot. Electrical stimuli delivered to the tibial nerve in the popliteal fossa at a level sufficient for the H reflex of soleus produced either a volley in muscle afferents from the intrinsic muscles of the foot or a volley in cutaneous afferents from the foot. 6. For comparable stimuli in the two positions, the H reflex was inhibited but the Achilles tendon jerk enhanced when the ankle was dorsiflexed from 105° to 90°. 7. The duration of the rise times of the excitatory post-synaptic potentials (e.p.s.p.s) produced in soleus motoneurones by electrical stimulation, and by tendon percussion subthreshold for the H reflex and the ankle jerk respectively, was estimated from post-stimulus time histograms of the discharge of voluntarily activated single motor units in soleus. The mean e.p.s.p. rise times were 1·9 ms for electrical stimulation and 6·6 ms for tendon percussion. There was evidence that the duration of the electrically evoked e.p.s.p. was curtailed by an inhibitory post-synaptic potential (i.p.s.p.) of only slightly longer latency than the e.p.s.p. 8. The mechanically induced and electrically induced afferent volleys are not homogeneous volleys in group I a afferents from triceps surae. The afferent volleys differ in so many respects that it is probably invalid to compare the H reflex and tendon jerk as a measure of fusimotor activity. It is suggested that neither reflex can be considered a purely monosynaptic reflex. PMID:6887033

  2. Vagal Afferent NMDA Receptors Modulate CCK-Induced Reduction of Food Intake Through Synapsin I Phosphorylation in Adult Male Rats

    PubMed Central

    Shiina, Hiroko; Silvas, Michael; Page, Stephen; Ritter, Robert C.

    2013-01-01

    Vagal afferent nerve fibers transmit gastrointestinal satiation signals to the brain via synapses in the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS). Despite their pivotal role in energy homeostasis, little is known about the cellular mechanisms enabling fleeting synaptic events at vagal sensory endings to sustain behavioral changes lasting minutes to hours. Previous reports suggest that the reduction of food intake by the satiation peptide, cholecystokinin (CCK), requires activation of N-methyl-D-aspartate-type glutamate receptors (NMDAR) in the NTS, with subsequent phosphorylation of ERK1/2 (pERK1/2) in NTS vagal afferent terminals. The synaptic vesicle protein synapsin I is phosphorylated by pERK1/2 at serines 62 and 67. This pERK1/2-catalyzed phosphorylation increases synaptic strength by increasing the readily releasable pool of the neurotransmitter. Conversely, dephosphorylation of serines 62 and 67 by calcineurin reduces the size of the readily releasable transmitter pool. Hence, the balance of synapsin I phosphorylation and dephosphorylation can modulate synaptic strength. We postulated that CCK-evoked activation of vagal afferent NMDARs results in pERK1/2-catalyzed phosphorylation of synapsin I in vagal afferent terminals, leading to the suppression of food intake. We found that CCK injection increased the phosphorylation of synapsin I in the NTS and that this increase is abolished after surgical or chemical ablation of vagal afferent fibers. Furthermore, fourth ventricle injection of an NMDAR antagonist or the mitogen-activated ERK kinase inhibitor blocked CCK-induced synapsin I phosphorylation, indicating that synapsin phosphorylation in vagal afferent terminals depends on NMDAR activation and ERK1/2 phosphorylation. Finally, hindbrain inhibition of calcineurin enhanced and prolonged synapsin I phosphorylation and potentiated reduction of food intake by CCK. Our findings are consistent with a mechanism in which NMDAR-dependent phosphorylation of ERK1/2 modulates satiation signals via synapsin I phosphorylation in vagal afferent endings. PMID:23715865

  3. Vagal afferent NMDA receptors modulate CCK-induced reduction of food intake through synapsin I phosphorylation in adult male rats.

    PubMed

    Campos, Carlos A; Shiina, Hiroko; Silvas, Michael; Page, Stephen; Ritter, Robert C

    2013-08-01

    Vagal afferent nerve fibers transmit gastrointestinal satiation signals to the brain via synapses in the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS). Despite their pivotal role in energy homeostasis, little is known about the cellular mechanisms enabling fleeting synaptic events at vagal sensory endings to sustain behavioral changes lasting minutes to hours. Previous reports suggest that the reduction of food intake by the satiation peptide, cholecystokinin (CCK), requires activation of N-methyl-D-aspartate-type glutamate receptors (NMDAR) in the NTS, with subsequent phosphorylation of ERK1/2 (pERK1/2) in NTS vagal afferent terminals. The synaptic vesicle protein synapsin I is phosphorylated by pERK1/2 at serines 62 and 67. This pERK1/2-catalyzed phosphorylation increases synaptic strength by increasing the readily releasable pool of the neurotransmitter. Conversely, dephosphorylation of serines 62 and 67 by calcineurin reduces the size of the readily releasable transmitter pool. Hence, the balance of synapsin I phosphorylation and dephosphorylation can modulate synaptic strength. We postulated that CCK-evoked activation of vagal afferent NMDARs results in pERK1/2-catalyzed phosphorylation of synapsin I in vagal afferent terminals, leading to the suppression of food intake. We found that CCK injection increased the phosphorylation of synapsin I in the NTS and that this increase is abolished after surgical or chemical ablation of vagal afferent fibers. Furthermore, fourth ventricle injection of an NMDAR antagonist or the mitogen-activated ERK kinase inhibitor blocked CCK-induced synapsin I phosphorylation, indicating that synapsin phosphorylation in vagal afferent terminals depends on NMDAR activation and ERK1/2 phosphorylation. Finally, hindbrain inhibition of calcineurin enhanced and prolonged synapsin I phosphorylation and potentiated reduction of food intake by CCK. Our findings are consistent with a mechanism in which NMDAR-dependent phosphorylation of ERK1/2 modulates satiation signals via synapsin I phosphorylation in vagal afferent endings. PMID:23715865

  4. Programmed cell death of retinal cone bipolar cells is independent of afferent or target control.

    PubMed

    Keeley, Patrick W; Madsen, Nils R; St John, Ace J; Reese, Benjamin E

    2014-10-15

    Programmed cell death contributes to the histogenesis of the nervous system, and is believed to be modulated through the sustaining effects of afferents and targets during the period of synaptogenesis. Cone bipolar cells undergo programmed cell death during development, and we confirm that the numbers of three different types are increased when the pro-apoptotic Bax gene is knocked out. When their cone afferents are selectively eliminated, or when the population of retinal ganglion cells is increased, however, cone bipolar cell number remains unchanged. Programmed cell death of the cone bipolar cell populations, therefore, may be modulated cell-intrinsically rather than via interactions with these synaptic partners. PMID:25169191

  5. Efferent Control of Hair Cell and Afferent Responses in the Semicircular Canals

    PubMed Central

    Boyle, Richard; Rabbitt, Richard D.; Highstein, Stephen M.

    2009-01-01

    The sensations of sound and motion generated by the inner ear are controlled by the brain through extensive centripetal innervation originating within the brain stem. In the semicircular canals, brain stem efferent neurons make synaptic contacts with mechanosensory hair cells and with the dendrites of afferent neurons. Here, we examine the relative contributions of efferent action on hair cells and afferents. Experiments were performed in vivo in the oyster toadfish, Opsanus tau. The efferent system was activated via electrical pulses to the brain stem and sensory responses to motion stimuli were quantified by simultaneous voltage recording from afferents and intracellular current- and/or voltage-clamp recordings from hair cells. Results showed synaptic inputs to both afferents and hair cells leading to relatively long-latency intracellular signaling responses: excitatory in afferents and inhibitory in hair cells. Generally, the net effect of efferent action was an increase in afferent background discharge and a simultaneous decrease in gain to angular motion stimuli. Inhibition of hair cells was likely the result of a ligand-gated opening of a major basolateral conductance. The reversal potential of the efferent-evoked current was just below the hair cell resting potential, thus resulting in a small hyperpolarization. The onset latency averaged about 90 ms and latency to peak response was 150–400 ms. Hair cell inhibition often outlasted afferent excitation and, in some cases, latched hair cells in the “off” condition for >1 s following cessation of stimulus. These features endow the animal with a powerful means to adjust the sensitivity and dynamic range of motion sensation. PMID:19571186

  6. Enhancement of signal sensitivity in a heterogeneous neural network refined from synaptic plasticity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xiumin; Small, Michael

    2010-08-01

    Long-term synaptic plasticity induced by neural activity is of great importance in informing the formation of neural connectivity and the development of the nervous system. It is reasonable to consider self-organized neural networks instead of prior imposition of a specific topology. In this paper, we propose a novel network evolved from two stages of the learning process, which are respectively guided by two experimentally observed synaptic plasticity rules, i.e. the spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) mechanism and the burst-timing-dependent plasticity (BTDP) mechanism. Due to the existence of heterogeneity in neurons that exhibit different degrees of excitability, a two-level hierarchical structure is obtained after the synaptic refinement. This self-organized network shows higher sensitivity to afferent current injection compared with alternative archetypal networks with different neural connectivity. Statistical analysis also demonstrates that it has the small-world properties of small shortest path length and high clustering coefficients. Thus the selectively refined connectivity enhances the ability of neuronal communications and improves the efficiency of signal transmission in the network.

  7. Onset coding is degraded in auditory nerve fibers from mutant mice lacking synaptic ribbons

    PubMed Central

    Buran, B.N.; Strenzke, N.; Neef, A.; Gundelfinger, E.D.; Moser, T.; Liberman, M.C.

    2010-01-01

    Synaptic ribbons, found at the pre-synaptic membrane of sensory cells in both ear and eye, have been implicated in the vesicle-pool dynamics of synaptic transmission. To elucidate ribbon function, we characterized the response properties of single auditory nerve fibers in mice lacking Bassoon, a scaffolding protein involved in anchoring ribbons to the membrane. In Bassoon mutants, immunohistochemistry showed fewer than 3% of the hair cells’ afferent synapses retained anchored ribbons. Auditory nerve fibers from mutants had normal threshold, dynamic range and post-onset adaptation in response to tone bursts, and they were able to phase-lock with normal precision to amplitude-modulated tones. However, spontaneous and sound-evoked discharge rates were reduced, and the reliability of spikes, particularly at stimulus onset, was significantly degraded as shown by an increased variance of first-spike latencies. Modeling based on in vitro studies of normal and mutant hair cells links these findings to reduced release rates at the synapse. The degradation of response reliability in these mutants suggests that the ribbon and/or bassoon normally facilitate high rates of exocytosis and that its absence significantly compromises the temporal resolving power of the auditory system. PMID:20519533

  8. Altered synaptic transmission at olfactory and vomeronasal nerve terminals in mice lacking N-type calcium channel Cav2.2.

    PubMed

    Weiss, Jan; Pyrski, Martina; Weissgerber, Petra; Zufall, Frank

    2014-11-01

    We investigated the role of voltage-activated calcium (Cav) channels for synaptic transmission at mouse olfactory and vomeronasal nerve terminals at the first synapse of the main and accessory olfactory pathways, respectively. We provided evidence for a central role of the N-type Cav channel subunit Cav2.2 in presynaptic transmitter release at these synapses. Striking Cav2.2 immunoreactivity was localised to the glomerular neuropil of the main olfactory bulb (MOB) and accessory olfactory bulb (AOB), and co-localised with presynaptic molecules such as bassoon. Voltage-clamp recordings of sensory nerve-evoked, excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) in mitral/tufted (M/T) and superficial tufted cells of the MOB and mitral cells of the AOB, in combination with established subtype-specific Cav channel toxins, indicated a predominant role of N-type channels in transmitter release at these synapses, whereas L-type, P/Q-type, and R-type channels had either no or only relatively minor contributions. In Cacna1b mutant mice lacking the Cav2.2 (?1B) subunit of N-type channels, olfactory nerve-evoked M/T cell EPSCs were not reduced but became blocker-resistant, thus indicating a major reorganisation and compensation of Cav channel subunits as a result of the Cav2.2 deletion at this synapse. Cav2.2-deficient mice also revealed that Cav2.2 was critically required for paired-pulse depression of olfactory nerve-evoked EPSCs in M/T cells of the MOB, and they demonstrated an essential requirement for Cav2.2 in vomeronasal nerve-evoked EPSCs of AOB mitral cells. Thus, Cacna1b loss-of-function mutations are unlikely to cause general anosmia but Cacna1b emerges as a strong candidate in the search for mutations causing altered olfactory perception, such as changes in general olfactory sensitivity and altered social responses to chemostimuli. PMID:25195871

  9. Growth factors in synaptic function

    PubMed Central

    Poon, Vivian Y.; Choi, Sojoong; Park, Mikyoung

    2013-01-01

    Synapses are increasingly recognized as key structures that malfunction in disorders like schizophrenia, mental retardation, and neurodegenerative diseases. The importance and complexity of the synapse has fuelled research into the molecular mechanisms underlying synaptogenesis, synaptic transmission, and plasticity. In this regard, neurotrophic factors such as netrin, Wnt, transforming growth factor-? (TGF-?), tumor necrosis factor-? (TNF-?), and others have gained prominence for their ability to regulate synaptic function. Several of these factors were first implicated in neuroprotection, neuronal growth, and axon guidance. However, their roles in synaptic development and function have become increasingly clear, and the downstream signaling pathways employed by these factors have begun to be elucidated. In this review, we will address the role of these factors and their downstream effectors in synaptic function in vivo and in cultured neurons. PMID:24065916

  10. Differential roles of signal transduction mechanisms in long-term potentiation of excitatory synaptic transmission induced by activation of group I mGluRs in the spinal trigeminal subnucleus oralis.

    PubMed

    Youn, Dong-ho

    2014-09-01

    Group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR1 and 5) have been implicated in long-term potentiation (LTP), a persistent increase of synaptic efficiency, in the central nervous system including the spinal trigeminal nucleus (Vsp). In the ascending pathway from the caudalis (Vc) to the oralis (Vo) subnuclus in Vsp, it has been shown that the activation of group I mGluRs (mGluR1 and 5) with their agonist (S)-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG) produces a delayed type of LTP of excitatory synaptic transmission and this LTP was mediated by mGluR1. Further, this study attempts to pharmacologically characterize essential signaling components for the expression of DHPG-induced LTP. As a result, it is found that the group I mGluRs essentially use G protein-mediated activation of the phospholipase C (PLC) pathway to express the LTP. However, recruited signaling molecules following the activation of PLC are differentially involved in the expression of LTP: i.e. IP3 receptor, intracellular Ca(2+) rise, CaMKII and ERK function as positive regulators, whereas PKC as a negative regulator. Furthermore, both L-type voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channel and canonical transient receptor potential channel positively contribute to the expression of LTP. Taken together, these results suggest that signaling molecules recruited by the activation of group I mGluRs collaboratively or oppositely control the optimal expression of synaptic plasticity at excitatory synapses in the Vo. PMID:25149878

  11. Opioid Actions in Primary-Afferent Fibers—Involvement in Analgesia and Anesthesia

    PubMed Central

    Kumamoto, Eiichi; Mizuta, Kotaro; Fujita, Tsugumi

    2011-01-01

    Opioids inhibit glutamatergic excitatory transmission from the periphery by activating G-protein coupled opioid receptors in the central terminals of primary-afferent neurons in the spinal substantia gelatinosa, resulting in antinociception. Opioid receptor activation in the peripheral terminals of primary-afferent neurons inhibits the production of action potentials in response to nociceptive stimuli given to the periphery, leading to antinociception. Opioids also exhibit a local anesthetic effect without opioid receptor activation in peripheral nerve fibers. This review article will focus on analgesia and anesthesia produced by the actions of opioids on primary-afferent fibers.

  12. Presynaptic calcium stores modulate afferent release in vestibular hair cells.

    PubMed

    Lelli, Andrea; Perin, Paola; Martini, Marta; Ciubotaru, Catalin D; Prigioni, Ivo; Valli, Paolo; Rossi, Maria L; Mammano, Fabio

    2003-07-30

    Hair cells, the mechanoreceptors of the acoustic and vestibular system, are presynaptic to primary afferent neurons of the eighth nerve and excite neural activity by the release of glutamate. In the present work, the role played by intracellular Ca2+ stores in afferent transmission was investigated, at the presynaptic level, by monitoring changes in the intracellular Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) in vestibular hair cells, and, at the postsynaptic level, by recording from single posterior canal afferent fibers. Application of 1-10 mm caffeine to hair cells potentiated Ca2+ responses evoked by depolarization at selected Ca2+ hot spots, and also induced a graded increase in cell membrane capacitance (DeltaCm), signaling exocytosis of the transmitter. Ca2+ signals evoked by caffeine peaked in a region located approximately 10 microm from the base of the hair cell. [Ca2+]i increases, similarly localized, were observed after 500 msec depolarizations, but not with 50 msec depolarizations, suggesting the occurrence of calcium-induced calcium release (CICR) from the same stores. Both Ca2+ and DeltaCm responses were inhibited after incubation with ryanodine (40 microm) for 8-10 min. Consistent with these results, afferent transmission was potentiated by caffeine and inhibited by ryanodine both at the level of action potentials and of miniature EPSPs (mEPSPs). Neither caffeine nor ryanodine affected the shape and amplitude of mEPSPs, indicating that both drugs acted at the presynaptic level. These results strongly suggest that endogenous modulators of the CICR process will affect afferent activity elicited by mechanical stimuli in the physiological frequency range. PMID:12890784

  13. Insulin-Like Growth Factor I Produces an Antidepressant-Like Effect and Elicits N-Methyl-D-Aspartate Receptor Independent Long-Term Potentiation of Synaptic Transmission in Medial Prefrontal Cortex and Hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xiao-lei; Colechio, Elizabeth M.; Ghoreishi-Haack, Nayereh; Gross, Amanda; Kroes, Roger A.; Stanton, Patric K.; Moskal, Joseph R.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Growth factors play an important role in regulating neurogenesis and synapse formation and may be involved in regulating the antidepressant response to conventional antidepressants. To date, Insulin-like growth factor I (IGFI) is the only growth factor that has shown antidepressant properties in human clinical trials. However, its mechanism of action remains unclear. Methods: The antidepressant-like effect of a single IV dose of IGFI was determined using a chronic unpredictable stress paradigm in the rat Porsolt, sucrose preference, novelty-induced hypophagia, and ultrasonic vocalization models. The dependence of the medial prefrontal cortex for these effects was determined by direct medial prefrontal cortex injection followed by Porsolt testing as well as IGFI receptor activation in the medial prefrontal cortex following an optimal IV antidepressant-like dose of IGFI. The effect of IGFI on synaptic transmission and long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic strength was assessed in the hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex. The dependence of these effects on IGFI and AMPA receptor activation and protein synthesis were also determined. Results: IGFI produced a rapid-acting and long-lasting antidepressant-like effect in each of the depression models. These effects were blocked by IGFI and AMPA receptor antagonists, and medial prefrontal cortex was localized. IGFI robustly increased synaptic strength in the hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex and these effects were IGFI receptor and protein synthesis-dependent but N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor independent. IGFI also robustly facilitated hippocampal metaplasticity 24 hours postdosing. Conclusions: These data support the conclusion that the antidepressant-like effects of IGFI are mediated by a persistent, LTP-like enhancement of synaptic strength requiring both IGFIR activation and ongoing protein synthesis. PMID:26374350

  14. EDITORIAL: Synaptic electronics Synaptic electronics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demming, Anna; Gimzewski, James K.; Vuillaume, Dominique

    2013-09-01

    Conventional computers excel in logic and accurate scientific calculations but make hard work of open ended problems that human brains handle easily. Even von Neumann—the mathematician and polymath who first developed the programming architecture that forms the basis of today's computers—was already looking to the brain for future developments before his death in 1957 [1]. Neuromorphic computing uses approaches that better mimic the working of the human brain. Recent developments in nanotechnology are now providing structures with very accommodating properties for neuromorphic approaches. This special issue, with guest editors James K Gimzewski and Dominique Vuillaume, is devoted to research at the serendipitous interface between the two disciplines. 'Synaptic electronics', looks at artificial devices with connections that demonstrate behaviour similar to synapses in the nervous system allowing a new and more powerful approach to computing. Synapses and connecting neurons respond differently to incident signals depending on the history of signals previously experienced, ultimately leading to short term and long term memory behaviour. The basic characteristics of a synapse can be replicated with around ten simple transistors. However with the human brain having around 1011 neurons and 1015 synapses, artificial neurons and synapses from basic transistors are unlikely to accommodate the scalability required. The discovery of nanoscale elements that function as 'memristors' has provided a key tool for the implementation of synaptic connections [2]. Leon Chua first developed the concept of the 'The memristor—the missing circuit element' in 1971 [3]. In this special issue he presents a tutorial describing how memristor research has fed into our understanding of synaptic behaviour and how they can be applied in information processing [4]. He also describes, 'The new principle of local activity, which uncovers a minuscule life-enabling "Goldilocks zone", dubbed the edge of chaos, where complex phenomena, including creativity and intelligence, may emerge'. Also in this issue R Stanley Williams and colleagues report results from simulations that demonstrate the potential for using Mott transistors as building blocks for scalable neuristor-based integrated circuits without transistors [5]. The scalability of neural chip designs is also tackled in the design reported by Narayan Srinivasa and colleagues in the US [6]. Meanwhile Carsten Timm and Massimiliano Di Ventra describe simulations of a molecular transistor in which electrons strongly coupled to a vibrational mode lead to a Franck-Condon (FC) blockade that mimics the spiking action potentials in synaptic memory behaviour [7]. The 'atomic switches' used to demonstrate synaptic behaviour by a collaboration of researchers in California and Japan also come under further scrutiny in this issue. James K Gimzewski and colleagues consider the difference between the behaviour of an atomic switch in isolation and in a network [8]. As the authors point out, 'The work presented represents steps in a unified approach of experimentation and theory of complex systems to make atomic switch networks a uniquely scalable platform for neuromorphic computing'. Researchers in Germany [9] and Sweden [10] also report on theoretical approaches to modelling networks of memristive elements and complementary resistive switches for synaptic devices. As Vincent Derycke and colleagues in France point out, 'Actual experimental demonstrations of neural network type circuits based on non-conventional/non-CMOS memory devices and displaying function learning capabilities remain very scarce'. They describe how their work using carbon nanotubes provides a rare demonstration of actual function learning with synapses based on nanoscale building blocks [11]. However, this is far from the only experimental work reported in this issue, others include: short-term memory of TiO2-based electrochemical capacitors [12]; a neuromorphic circuit composed of a nanoscale 1-kbit resistive random-access memory (RRAM) cross-point array of synapses and complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) neuron circuits [13]; a WO3-x-based nanoionics device from Masakazu Aono's group with a wide scale of reprogrammable memorization functions [14]; a new spike-timing dependent plasticity scheme based on a MOS transistor as a selector and a RRAM as a variable resistance device [15]; a new hybrid memristor-CMOS neuromorphic circuit [16]; and a photo-assisted atomic switch [17]. Synaptic electronics evidently has many emerging facets, and Duygu Kuzum, Shimeng Yu, and H-S Philip Wong in the US provide a review of the field, including the materials, devices and applications [18]. In embracing the expertise acquired over thousands of years of evolution, biomimetics and bio-inspired design is a common, smart approach to technological innovation. Yet in successfully mimicking the physiological mechanisms of the human mind synaptic electronics research has a potential impact that is arguably unprecedented. That the quirks and eccentricities recently unearthed in the behaviour of nanomaterials should lend themselves so accommodatingly to emulating synaptic functions promises some very exciting developments in the field, as the articles in this special issue emphasize. References [1] von Neumann J (ed) 2012 The Computer and the Brain 3rd edn (Yale: Yale University Press) [2] Strukov D B, Snider G S, Stewart D R and Williams R S 2008 The missing memristor found Nature 453 80-3 [3] Chua L O 1971 Memristor—the missing circuit element IEEE Trans. Circuit Theory 18 507-19 [4] Chua L O 2013 Memristor, Hodgkin-Huxley, and Edge of Chaos Nanotechnology 24 383001 [5] Pickett M D and Williams R S 2013 Phase transitions enable computational universality in neuristor-based cellular automata Nanotechnology 24 384002 [6] Cruz-Albrecht J M, Derosier T and Srinivasa N 2013 Scalable neural chip with synaptic electronics using CMOS integrated memristors Nanotechnology 24 384011 [7] Timm C and Di Ventra M 2013 Molecular neuron based on the Franck-Condon blockade Nanotechnology 24 384001 [8] Sillin H O, Aguilera R, Shieh H-H, Avizienis A V, Aono M, Stieg A Z and Gimzewski J K 2013 A theoretical and experimental study of neuromorphic atomic switch networks for reservoir computing Nanotechnology 24 384004 [9] Linn E, Menzel S, Ferch S and Waser R 2013 Compact modeling of CRS devices based on ECM cells for memory, logic and neuromorphic applications Nanotechnology 24 384008 [10] Konkoli Z and Wendin G 2013 A generic simulator for large networks of memristive elements Nanotechnology 24 384007 [11] Gacem K, Retrouvey J-M, Chabi D, Filoramo A, Zhao W, Klein J-O and Derycke V 2013 Neuromorphic function learning with carbon nanotube-based synapses Nanotechnology 24 384013 [12] Lim H, Kim I, Kim J-S, Hwang C S and Jeong D S 2013 Short-term memory of TiO2-based electrochemical capacitors: empirical analysis with adoption of a sliding threshold Nanotechnology 24 384005 [13] Park S, Noh J, Choo M-L, Sheri A M, Chang M, Kim Y-B, Kim C J, Jeon M, Lee B-G, Lee B H and Hwang H 2013 Nanoscale RRAM-based synaptic electronics: toward a neuromorphic computing device Nanotechnology 24 384009 [14] Yang R, Terabe K, Yao Y, Tsuruoka T, Hasegawa T, Gimzewski J K and Aono M 2013 Synaptic plasticity and memory functions achieved in WO3-x-based nanoionics device by using principle of atomic switch operation Nanotechnology 24 384002 [15] Ambrogio S, Balatti S, Nardi F, Facchinetti S and Ielmini D 2013 Spike-timing dependent plasticity in a transistor-selected resistive switching memory Nanotechnology 24 384012 [16] Indiveria G, Linares-Barranco B, Legenstein R, Deligeorgis G and Prodromakise T 2013 Integration of nanoscale memristor synapses in neuromorphic computing architectures Nanotechnology 24 384010 [17] Hino T, Hasegawa T, Tanaka H, Tsuruoka T, Terabe K, Ogawa T and Aono M 2013 Volatile and nonvolatile selective switching of a photo-assited initialized atomic switch Nanotechnology 24 384006 [18] Kuzum D, Yu S and Wong H-S P 2013 Synaptic electronics: materials, devices and applications Nanotechnology 24 382001

  15. Molecular Underpinnings of Synaptic Vesicle Pool Heterogeneity

    PubMed Central

    Crawford, Devon C.; Kavalali, Ege T.

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal communication relies on chemical synaptic transmission for information transfer and processing. Chemical neurotransmission is initiated by synaptic vesicle fusion with the presynaptic active zone resulting in release of neurotransmitters. Classical models have assumed that all synaptic vesicles within a synapse have the same potential to fuse under different functional contexts. In this model, functional differences among synaptic vesicle populations are ascribed to their spatial distribution in the synapse with respect to the active zone. Emerging evidence suggests, however, that synaptic vesicles are not a homogenous population of organelles, and they possess intrinsic molecular differences and differential interaction partners. Recent studies have reported a diverse array of synaptic molecules that selectively regulate synaptic vesicles' ability to fuse synchronously and asynchronously in response to action potentials or spontaneously irrespective of action potentials. Here we discuss these molecular mediators of vesicle pool heterogeneity that are found on the synaptic vesicle membrane, on the presynaptic plasma membrane, or within the cytosol and consider some of the functional consequences of this diversity. This emerging molecular framework presents novel avenues to probe synaptic function and uncover how synaptic vesicle pools impact neuronal signaling. PMID:25620674

  16. Exercise modulates synaptic acetylcholinesterase at neuromuscular junctions.

    PubMed

    Blotnick, E; Anglister, L

    2016-04-01

    Acetylcholinesterase plays a major role in neuromuscular transmission and is regulated by neuromuscular activity. Since fast-twitch motor units are recruited with increased motor demand, we examined acetylcholinesterase regulation in rat leg muscles following treadmill training. Total acetylcholinesterase and specifically the membrane-bound tetramer increased in exercised fast-, but not slow-twitch muscles, while other isoforms remained unchanged. Synaptic acetylcholinesterase increased markedly in neuromuscular junctions of trained fibers, without concomitant changes in synaptic acetylcholine receptor, thus elevating synaptic acetylcholinesterase/receptor ratios. Electron microscopy showed that acetylcholinesterase increased in postjunctional folds and primary cleft, where it was added adjacent to the postsynaptic muscle membrane. Thus, although the primary acetylcholinesterase at the neuromuscular junction is the collagen-tailed asymmetric isoform associated with synaptic basal lamina, physiological demands such as strenuous exercise, or potentially pathological conditions, can selectively recruit the membrane-bound acetylcholinesterase tetramer to the synapse for optimal synaptic transmission. PMID:26820598

  17. Nonnociceptive afferent activity depresses nocifensive behavior and nociceptive synapses via an endocannabinoid-dependent mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Sharleen

    2013-01-01

    Previously, low-frequency stimulation (LFS) of a nonnociceptive touch-sensitive neuron has been found to elicit endocannabinoid-dependent long-term depression (eCB-LTD) in nociceptive synapses in the leech central nervous system (CNS) that requires activation of a presynaptic transient receptor potential vanilloid (TRPV)-like receptor by postsynaptically synthesized 2-arachidonoyl glycerol (2-AG). This capacity of nonnociceptive afferent activity to reduce nociceptive signaling resembles gate control of pain, albeit longer lasting in these synaptic experiments. Since eCB-LTD has been observed at a single sensory-motor synapse, this study examines the functional relevance of this mechanism, specifically whether this form of synaptic plasticity has similar effects at the behavioral level in which additional, intersegmental neural circuits are engaged. Experiments were carried out using a semi-intact preparation that permitted both synaptic recordings and monitoring of the leech whole body shortening, a defensive withdrawal reflex that was elicited via intracellular stimulation of a single nociceptive neuron (the N cell). The same LFS of a nonnociceptive afferent that induced eCB-LTD in single synapses also produced an attenuation of the shortening reflex. Similar attenuation of behavior was also observed when 2-AG was applied. LFS-induced behavioral and synaptic depression was blocked by tetrahydrolipstatin (THL), a diacylglycerol lipase inhibitor, and by SB366791, a TRPV1 antagonist. The effects of both THL and SB366791 were observed following either bath application of the drug or intracellular injection into the presynaptic (SB366791) or postsynaptic (THL) neuron. These findings demonstrate a novel, endocannabinoid-based mechanism by which nonnociceptive afferent activity may modulate nocifensive behaviors via action on primary afferent synapses. PMID:24027102

  18. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor drives the changes in excitatory synaptic transmission in the rat superficial dorsal horn that follow sciatic nerve injury.

    PubMed

    Lu, Van B; Biggs, James E; Stebbing, Martin J; Balasubramanyan, Sridhar; Todd, Kathryn G; Lai, Aaron Y; Colmers, William F; Dawbarn, David; Ballanyi, Klaus; Smith, Peter A

    2009-03-01

    Peripheral nerve injury can promote neuropathic pain. The basis of the 'central sensitization' that underlies this often intractable condition was investigated using 14-20-day chronic constriction injury (CCI) of the sciatic nerve of 20-day-old rats followed by electrophysiological analysis of acutely isolated spinal cord slices. In addition, defined-medium organotypic spinal cord slice cultures were exposed for 5-6 days to brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF, 200 ng ml(-1)) or to medium conditioned with activated microglia (aMCM). Since microglial activation is an early consequence of CCI, the latter manipulation allowed us to model the effect of peripheral nerve injury on the dorsal horn in vitro. Using whole-cell recording from superficial dorsal horn neurons, we found that both BDNF and CCI increased excitatory synaptic drive to putative excitatory 'radial delay' neurons and decreased synaptic excitation of inhibitory 'tonic islet/central' neurons. BDNF also attenuated synaptic excitation of putative GABAergic neurons identified by glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) immunoreactivity. Intrinsic neuronal properties (rheobase, input resistance and action potential discharge rates) were unaffected. Exposure of organotypic cultures to either BDNF or aMCM increased overall excitability of the dorsal horn, as seen by increased cytoplasmic Ca(2+) responses to 35 mm K(+) as monitored by confocal Fluo-4AM imaging. The effect of aMCM was attenuated by the recombinant BDNF binding protein TrkBd5 and the effect of BDNF persisted when GABAergic inhibition was blocked with SR95531. These findings suggest that CCI enhances excitatory synaptic drive to excitatory neurons but decreases that to inhibitory neurons. Both effects are mediated by nerve injury-induced release of BDNF from microglia. PMID:19124536

  19. Utricular afferents: morphology of peripheral terminals.

    PubMed

    Huwe, J A; Logan, G J; Williams, B; Rowe, M H; Peterson, E H

    2015-04-01

    The utricle provides critical information about spatiotemporal properties of head movement. It comprises multiple subdivisions whose functional roles are poorly understood. We previously identified four subdivisions in turtle utricle, based on hair bundle structure and mechanics, otoconial membrane structure and hair bundle coupling, and immunoreactivity to calcium-binding proteins. Here we ask whether these macular subdivisions are innervated by distinctive populations of afferents to help us understand the role each subdivision plays in signaling head movements. We quantified the morphology of 173 afferents and identified six afferent classes, which differ in structure and macular locus. Calyceal and dimorphic afferents innervate one striolar band. Bouton afferents innervate a second striolar band; they have elongated terminals and the thickest processes and axons of all bouton units. Bouton afferents in lateral (LES) and medial (MES) extrastriolae have small-diameter axons but differ in collecting area, bouton number, and hair cell contacts (LES > MES). A fourth, distinctive population of bouton afferents supplies the juxtastriola. These results, combined with our earlier findings on utricular hair cells and the otoconial membrane, suggest the hypotheses that MES and calyceal afferents encode head movement direction with high spatial resolution and that MES afferents are well suited to signal three-dimensional head orientation and striolar afferents to signal head movement onset. PMID:25632074

  20. Learning with two sites of synaptic integration.

    PubMed

    Körding, K P; König, P

    2000-02-01

    Since the classical work of D O Hebb 1949 The Organization of Behaviour (New York: Wiley) it is assumed that synaptic plasticity solely depends on the activity of the pre- and the postsynaptic cells. Synapses influence the plasticity of other synapses exclusively via the post-synaptic activity. This confounds effects on synaptic plasticity and neuronal activation and, thus, makes it difficult to implement networks which optimize global measures of performance. Exploring solutions to this problem, inspired by recent research on the properties of apical dendrites, we examine a network of neurons with two sites of synaptic integration. These communicate in such a way that one set of synapses mainly influences the neurons' activity; the other set gates synaptic plasticity. Analysing the system with a constant set of parameters reveals: (1) the afferents that gate plasticity act as supervisors, individual to every cell. (2) While the neurons acquire specific receptive fields the net activity remains constant for different stimuli. This ensures that all stimuli are represented and, thus, contributes to information maximization. (3) Mechanisms for maximization of coherent information can easily be implemented. Neurons with non-overlapping receptive fields learn to fire correlated and preferentially transmit information that is correlated over space. (4) We demonstrate how a new measure of performance can be implemented: cells learn to represent only the part of the input that is relevant to the processing at higher stages. This criterion is termed 'relevant infomax'. PMID:10735527

  1. Novel Afferent Terminal Structure in the Crista Ampullaris of the Goldfish, Carassius auratus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lanford, Pamela J.; Popper, Arthur N.

    1996-01-01

    Using transmission electron microscopy, we have identified a new type of afferent terminal structure in the crista ampullaris of the goldfish Carassius auratus. In addition to the bouton-type afferent terminals previously described in the ear of this species, the crista also contained enlarged afferent terminals that enveloped a portion of the basolateral hair cell membrane. The hair cell membrane was evaginated and protruded into the afferent terminal in a glove-and-finger configuration. The membranes of the two cells were regularly aligned in the protruded region of the contact and had a distinct symmetrical electron density. The electron-dense profiles of these contacts were easily identified and were present in every crista sampled. In some cases, efferent terminals synapsed onto the afferents at a point where the hair cell protruded into the terminal. The ultrastructural similarities of the goldfish crista afferents to calyx afferents found in amniotes (birds, reptiles, and mammals) are discussed. The results of the study support the hypothesis that structural variation in the vertebrate inner ear may have evolved much earlier in evolution than previously supposed.

  2. Sublinear summation of afferent inputs to the nucleus accumbens in the awake rat

    PubMed Central

    Wolf, John A; Finkel, Leif H; Contreras, Diego

    2009-01-01

    The mechanisms by which the nucleus accumbens integrates afferent input from limbic and cortical structures have been influential in the development of models of psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia. Previous studies of the response of nucleus accumbens (Nacb) cells to the stimulation of afferent inputs from hippocampus (HC) and prefrontal cortex (PFC) have demonstrated that PFC throughput can be modulated by preceding HC input. Examination of the post-synaptic potential size has suggested, however, that summation of these inputs is sublinear. All studies to date examining Nacb integration of inputs via stimulation of afferents have been performed in the anaesthetized rat. The present experiments compare the response of Nacb cells to different combinations of PFC and HC stimulation in awake and isoflurane-anaesthetized rats that were chronically implanted with both stimulating and recording electrodes. The results of these experiments suggest that summation of afferent input in the Nacb of the awake rat is predominantly sublinear, with only a minority of neurons demonstrating modulation of PFC inputs by the HC in the awake or the anaesthetized animal. The response profile of many cells changed during anaesthesia when compared to the awake condition, and on average showed suppression to PFC input 50 and 150 ms following HC stimulation while under deep isoflurane anaesthesia. These results suggest that sublinear integration of afferent input from the PFC and HC is the dominant mode of integration of Nacb cells in the awake animal, which has implications for corticostriatal models of psychiatric dysfunction. PMID:19221123

  3. Endogenous Interleukin-1β in Neuropathic Rats Enhances Glutamate Release from the Primary Afferents in the Spinal Dorsal Horn through Coupling with Presynaptic N-Methyl-d-aspartic Acid Receptors*♦

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Xisheng; Weng, Han-Rong

    2013-01-01

    Excessive activation of glutamate receptors and overproduction of proinflammatory cytokines, including interleukin-1β (IL-1β) in the spinal dorsal horn, are key mechanisms underlying the development and maintenance of neuropathic pain. In this study, we investigated the mechanisms by which endogenous IL-1β alters glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the spinal dorsal horn in rats with neuropathic pain induced by ligation of the L5 spinal nerve. We demonstrated that endogenous IL-1β in neuropathic rats enhances glutamate release from the primary afferent terminals and non-NMDA glutamate receptor activities in postsynaptic neurons in the spinal dorsal horn. Myeloid differentiation primary response protein 88 (MyD88) is a mediator used by IL-1β to enhance non-NMDA glutamate receptor activities in postsynaptic neurons in the spinal dorsal horn. Presynaptic NMDA receptors are effector receptors used by the endogenous IL-1β to enhance glutamate release from the primary afferents in neuropathic rats. This is further supported by the fact that NMDA currents recorded from small neurons in the dorsal root ganglion of normal rats are potentiated by exogenous IL-1β. Furthermore, we provided evidence that functional coupling between IL-1β receptors and presynaptic NMDA receptors at the primary afferent terminals is mediated by the neutral sphingomyelinase/ceramide signaling pathway. Hence, functional coupling between IL-1β receptors and presynaptic NMDA receptors at the primary afferent terminals is a crucial mechanism leading to enhanced glutamate release and activation of non-NMDA receptors in the spinal dorsal horn neurons in neuropathic pain conditions. Interruption of such functional coupling could be an effective approach for the treatment of neuropathic pain. PMID:24003233

  4. [Research progress of synaptic vesicle recycling].

    PubMed

    Li, Ye-Fei; Zhang, Xiao-Xing; Duan, Shu-Min

    2015-12-25

    Neurotransmission begins with neurotransmitter being released from synaptic vesicles. To achieve this function, synaptic vesicles endure the dynamic "release-recycle" process to maintain the function and structure of presynaptic terminal. Synaptic transmission starts with a single action potential that depolarizes axonal bouton, followed by an increase in the cytosolic calcium concentration that triggers the synaptic vesicle membrane fusion with presynaptic membrane to release neurotransmitter; then the vesicle membrane can be endocytosed for reusing afterwards. This process requires delicate regulation, intermediate steps and dynamic balances. Accumulating evidence showed that the release ability and mobility of synapses varies under different stimulations. Synaptic vesicle heterogeneity has been studied at molecular and cellular levels, hopefully leading to the identification of the relationships between structure and function and understanding how vesicle regulation affects synaptic transmission and plasticity. People are beginning to realize that different types of synapses show diverse presynaptic activities. The steady advances of technology studying synaptic vesicle recycling promote people's understanding of this field. In this review, we discuss the following three aspects of the research progresses on synaptic vesicle recycling: 1) presynaptic vesicle pools and recycling; 2) research progresses on the differences of glutamatergic and GABAergic presynaptic vesicle recycling mechanism and 3) comparison of the technologies used in studying presyanptic vesicle recycling and the latest progress in the technology development in this field. PMID:26701630

  5. Synaptic Vesicle Pools and Dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Alabi, AbdulRasheed A.; Tsien, Richard W.

    2012-01-01

    Synaptic vesicles release neurotransmitter at chemical synapses, thus initiating the flow of information in neural networks. To achieve this, vesicles undergo a dynamic cycle of fusion and retrieval to maintain the structural and functional integrity of the presynaptic terminals in which they reside. Moreover, compelling evidence indicates these vesicles differ in their availability for release and mobilization in response to stimuli, prompting classification into at least three different functional pools. Ongoing studies of the molecular and cellular bases for this heterogeneity attempt to link structure to physiology and clarify how regulation of vesicle pools influences synaptic strength and presynaptic plasticity. We discuss prevailing perspectives on vesicle pools, the role they play in shaping synaptic transmission, and the open questions that challenge current understanding. PMID:22745285

  6. A Model of Bidirectional Synaptic Plasticity: From Signaling Network to Channel Conductance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Castellani, Gastone C.; Quinlan, Elizabeth M.; Bersani, Ferdinando; Cooper, Leon N.; Shouval, Harel Z.

    2005-01-01

    In many regions of the brain, including the mammalian cortex, the strength of synaptic transmission can be bidirectionally regulated by cortical activity (synaptic plasticity). One line of evidence indicates that long-term synaptic potentiation (LTP) and long-term synaptic depression (LTD), correlate with the phosphorylation/dephosphorylation of…

  7. A Model of Bidirectional Synaptic Plasticity: From Signaling Network to Channel Conductance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Castellani, Gastone C.; Quinlan, Elizabeth M.; Bersani, Ferdinando; Cooper, Leon N.; Shouval, Harel Z.

    2005-01-01

    In many regions of the brain, including the mammalian cortex, the strength of synaptic transmission can be bidirectionally regulated by cortical activity (synaptic plasticity). One line of evidence indicates that long-term synaptic potentiation (LTP) and long-term synaptic depression (LTD), correlate with the phosphorylation/dephosphorylation of…

  8. Distinct recurrent versus afferent dynamics in cortical visual processing.

    PubMed

    Reinhold, Kimberly; Lien, Anthony D; Scanziani, Massimo

    2015-12-01

    How intracortical recurrent circuits in mammalian sensory cortex influence dynamics of sensory representation is not understood. Previous methods could not distinguish the relative contributions of recurrent circuits and thalamic afferents to cortical dynamics. We accomplish this by optogenetically manipulating thalamus and cortex. Over the initial 40 ms of visual stimulation, excitation from recurrent circuits in visual cortex progressively increased to exceed direct thalamocortical excitation. Even when recurrent excitation exceeded thalamic excitation, upon silencing thalamus, sensory-evoked activity in cortex decayed rapidly, with a time constant of 10 ms, which is similar to a neuron's integration time window. In awake mice, this cortical decay function predicted the time-locking of cortical activity to thalamic input at frequencies <15 Hz and attenuation of the cortical response to higher frequencies. Under anesthesia, depression at thalamocortical synapses disrupted the fidelity of sensory transmission. Thus, we determine dynamics intrinsic to cortical recurrent circuits that transform afferent input in time. PMID:26502263

  9. Potentiation of NMDA receptor-mediated transmission in striatal cholinergic interneurons

    PubMed Central

    Oswald, Manfred J.; Schulz, Jan M.; Kelsch, Wolfgang; Oorschot, Dorothy E.; Reynolds, John N. J.

    2015-01-01

    Pauses in the tonic firing of striatal cholinergic interneurons (CINs) emerge during reward-related learning in response to conditioning of a neutral cue. We have previously reported that augmenting the postsynaptic response to cortical afferents in CINs is coupled to the emergence of a cell-intrinsic afterhyperpolarization (AHP) underlying pauses in tonic activity. Here we investigated in a bihemispheric rat-brain slice preparation the mechanisms of synaptic plasticity of excitatory afferents to CINs and the association with changes in the AHP. We found that high frequency stimulation (HFS) of commissural corticostriatal afferents from the contralateral hemisphere induced a robust long-term depression (LTD) of postsynaptic potentials (PSP) in CINs. Depression of the PSP of smaller magnitude and duration was observed in response to HFS of the ipsilateral white matter or cerebral cortex. In Mg2+-free solution HFS induced NMDA receptor-dependent potentiation of the PSP, evident in both the maximal slope and amplitude of the PSP. The increase in maximal slope corroborates previous findings, and was blocked by antagonism of either D1-like dopamine receptors with SCH23390 or D2-like dopamine receptors with sulpiride during HFS in Mg2+-free solution. Potentiation of the slower PSP amplitude component was due to augmentation of the NMDA receptor-mediated potential as this was completely reversed on subsequent application of the NMDA receptor antagonist AP5. HFS similarly potentiated NMDA receptor currents isolated by blockade of AMPA/kainate receptors with CNQX. The plasticity-induced increase in the slow PSP component was directly associated with an increase in the subsequent AHP. Thus plasticity of cortical afferent synapses is ideally suited to influence the cue-induced firing dynamics of CINs, particularly through potentiation of NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission. PMID:25914618

  10. Onset coding is degraded in auditory nerve fibers from mutant mice lacking synaptic ribbons.

    PubMed

    Buran, Bradley N; Strenzke, Nicola; Neef, Andreas; Gundelfinger, Eckart D; Moser, Tobias; Liberman, M Charles

    2010-06-01

    Synaptic ribbons, found at the presynaptic membrane of sensory cells in both ear and eye, have been implicated in the vesicle-pool dynamics of synaptic transmission. To elucidate ribbon function, we characterized the response properties of single auditory nerve fibers in mice lacking Bassoon, a scaffolding protein involved in anchoring ribbons to the membrane. In bassoon mutants, immunohistochemistry showed that fewer than 3% of the hair cells' afferent synapses retained anchored ribbons. Auditory nerve fibers from mutants had normal threshold, dynamic range, and postonset adaptation in response to tone bursts, and they were able to phase lock with normal precision to amplitude-modulated tones. However, spontaneous and sound-evoked discharge rates were reduced, and the reliability of spikes, particularly at stimulus onset, was significantly degraded as shown by an increased variance of first-spike latencies. Modeling based on in vitro studies of normal and mutant hair cells links these findings to reduced release rates at the synapse. The degradation of response reliability in these mutants suggests that the ribbon and/or Bassoon normally facilitate high rates of exocytosis and that its absence significantly compromises the temporal resolving power of the auditory system. PMID:20519533

  11. Topoisomerase 1 inhibition reversibly impairs synaptic function

    PubMed Central

    Mabb, Angela M.; Kullmann, Paul H. M.; Twomey, Margaret A.; Miriyala, Jayalakshmi; Philpot, Benjamin D.; Zylka, Mark J.

    2014-01-01

    Topotecan is a topoisomerase 1 (TOP1) inhibitor that is used to treat various forms of cancer. We recently found that topotecan reduces the expression of multiple long genes, including many neuronal genes linked to synapses and autism. However, whether topotecan alters synaptic protein levels and synapse function is currently unknown. Here we report that in primary cortical neurons, topotecan depleted synaptic proteins that are encoded by extremely long genes, including Neurexin-1, Neuroligin-1, Cntnap2, and GABAA?3. Topotecan also suppressed spontaneous network activity without affecting resting membrane potential, action potential threshold, or neuron health. Topotecan strongly suppressed inhibitory neurotransmission via pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms and reduced excitatory neurotransmission. The effects on synaptic protein levels and inhibitory neurotransmission were fully reversible upon drug washout. Collectively, our findings suggest that TOP1 controls the levels of multiple synaptic proteins and is required for normal excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission. PMID:25404338

  12. In vivo imaging reveals dendritic targeting of laminated afferents by zebrafish retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Mumm, Jeff S.; Williams, Philip R.; Godinho, Leanne; Koerber, Amy; Pittman, Andrew J.; Roeser, Tobias; Chien, Chi-Bin; Baier, Herwig; Wong, Rachel O.L.

    2006-01-01

    SUMMARY Targeting of axons and dendrites to particular synaptic laminae is an important mechanism by which precise patterns of neuronal connectivity are established. Although axons target specific laminae during development, dendritic lamination has been thought to occur largely by pruning of inappropriately placed arbors. We discovered by in vivo time-lapse imaging, that retinal ganglion cell (RGC) dendrites in zebrafish show growth patterns implicating dendritic targeting as a mechanism for contacting appropriate synaptic partners. Populations of RGCs labeled in transgenic animals establish distinct dendritic strata sequentially, predominantly from the inner to outer retina. Imaging individual cells over successive days confirmed that multistratified RGCs generate strata sequentially, each arbor elaborating within a specific lamina. Simultaneous imaging of RGCs and subpopulations of presynaptic amacrine interneurons revealed that RGC dendrites appear to target amacrine plexuses that had already laminated. Dendritic targeting of pre-patterned afferents may thus be a novel mechanism for establishing proper synaptic connectivity. PMID:17114046

  13. Deep mRNA Sequencing of the Tritonia diomedea Brain Transcriptome Provides Access to Gene Homologues for Neuronal Excitability, Synaptic Transmission and Peptidergic Signalling

    PubMed Central

    Senatore, Adriano; Edirisinghe, Neranjan; Katz, Paul S.

    2015-01-01

    Background The sea slug Tritonia diomedea (Mollusca, Gastropoda, Nudibranchia), has a simple and highly accessible nervous system, making it useful for studying neuronal and synaptic mechanisms underlying behavior. Although many important contributions have been made using Tritonia, until now, a lack of genetic information has impeded exploration at the molecular level. Results We performed Illumina sequencing of central nervous system mRNAs from Tritonia, generating 133.1 million 100 base pair, paired-end reads. De novo reconstruction of the RNA-Seq data yielded a total of 185,546 contigs, which partitioned into 123,154 non-redundant gene clusters (unigenes). BLAST comparison with RefSeq and Swiss-Prot protein databases, as well as mRNA data from other invertebrates (gastropod molluscs: Aplysia californica, Lymnaea stagnalis and Biomphalaria glabrata; cnidarian: Nematostella vectensis) revealed that up to 76,292 unigenes in the Tritonia transcriptome have putative homologues in other databases, 18,246 of which are below a more stringent E-value cut-off of 1x10-6. In silico prediction of secreted proteins from the Tritonia transcriptome shotgun assembly (TSA) produced a database of 579 unique sequences of secreted proteins, which also exhibited markedly higher expression levels compared to other genes in the TSA. Conclusions Our efforts greatly expand the availability of gene sequences available for Tritonia diomedea. We were able to extract full length protein sequences for most queried genes, including those involved in electrical excitability, synaptic vesicle release and neurotransmission, thus confirming that the transcriptome will serve as a useful tool for probing the molecular correlates of behavior in this species. We also generated a neurosecretome database that will serve as a useful tool for probing peptidergic signalling systems in the Tritonia brain. PMID:25719197

  14. Impact of Synaptic Neurotransmitter Concentration Time Course on the Kinetics and Pharmacological Modulation of Inhibitory Synaptic Currents

    PubMed Central

    Barberis, Andrea; Petrini, Enrica Maria; Mozrzymas, Jerzy W.

    2011-01-01

    The time course of synaptic currents is a crucial determinant of rapid signaling between neurons. Traditionally, the mechanisms underlying the shape of synaptic signals are classified as pre- and post-synaptic. Over the last two decades, an extensive body of evidence indicated that synaptic signals are critically shaped by the neurotransmitter time course which encompasses several phenomena including pre- and post-synaptic ones. The agonist transient depends on neurotransmitter release mechanisms, diffusion within the synaptic cleft, spill-over to the extra-synaptic space, uptake, and binding to post-synaptic receptors. Most estimates indicate that the neurotransmitter transient is very brief, lasting between one hundred up to several hundreds of microseconds, implying that post-synaptic activation is characterized by a high degree of non-equilibrium. Moreover, pharmacological studies provide evidence that the kinetics of agonist transient plays a crucial role in setting the susceptibility of synaptic currents to modulation by a variety of compounds of physiological or clinical relevance. More recently, the role of the neurotransmitter time course has been emphasized by studies carried out on brain slice models that revealed a striking, cell-dependent variability of synaptic agonist waveforms ranging from rapid pulses to slow volume transmission. In the present paper we review the advances on studies addressing the impact of synaptic neurotransmitter transient on kinetics and pharmacological modulation of synaptic currents at inhibitory synapses. PMID:21734864

  15. Complex synaptic configurations in planarian brain.

    PubMed

    Best, J B; Noel, J

    1969-05-30

    Complex synaptic configurations which appear to have especial evolutionary and functional significance are shown in the neuropil of the brain of the planarian Dugesia dorotocephala. Some of the endings in these synaptic attachments contain dense core vesicles, suggesting that nonadrenaline or serotonin or both are neurotransmitters at a more primitive phyletic level than reported hitherto. The spatial proximity and connectivity of the synapses suggest modes of action permitting greater functional complexity to the planarian brain than previously supposed. Closely adjacent cellular processes which contain polysomal ribosomes, unusual in the neuropil, suggest synaptic transmission-protein synthesis coupling and a possible role in memory. PMID:4306013

  16. Optical trapping of synaptic vesicles in neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hosokawa, Chie; Kudoh, Suguru N.; Kiyohara, Ai; Taguchi, Takahisa

    2011-04-01

    We demonstrate intracellular manipulation of synaptic vesicles in living neurons by optical trapping. When an infrared trapping laser is focused on synapses of a neuronal cell labeled with a fluorescent endocytic marker, fluorescence is observed at the focal spot. The fluorescence spectrum is attributed to fluorescent dye in the synaptic vesicles, indicating excitation by two-photon absorption of the trapping laser. The fluorescence intensity increases gradually within ˜100 s of laser irradiation, suggesting that trapping force causes vesicles assembly at the focus. Our method can be applied to manipulate synaptic transmission of a particular neuron in a neuronal network.

  17. Synchronous afferent discharge from a passive muscle of the cat: significance for interpreting spike-triggered averages.

    PubMed Central

    Hamm, T M; Reinking, R M; Roscoe, D D; Stuart, D G

    1985-01-01

    Evidence is presented for the existence of synchrony between the spike trains of muscle afferents of the passive cat medial gastrocnemius muscle held at fixed length. Synchrony between the spike trains of a population of muscle afferents was quantified by means of a synchronization index (Is), derived from spike-triggered averages of the muscle-nerve neurogram and the rectified neurogram. A previously used test based solely upon the neurogram average (Watt, Stauffer, Taylor, Reinking & Stuart, 1976) is shown to be invalid. The differences between experimentally derived Is values and theoretical Is values derived for the condition of asynchrony were compared to estimated confidence limits for those differences. This comparison revealed that twenty-two of fifty-three muscle-afferent spike trains whose rectified averages satisfied certain conditions for interpreting the Is were synchronized with the discharge of other afferents. The form of the rectified averages of another eight afferents suggested that these afferents might also have been synchronized. Synchrony in the discharge of muscle afferents was found in three experiments in which the neurogram was recorded from a single nerve branch to medial gastrocnemius, as well as in the data of experiments in which the whole muscle nerve was used. The degree of synchrony was similar for Ia, spindle group II and Ib afferents. The magnitude of the synchrony found in these experiments was judged by comparison to the results of analog simulations and the increase in Is values resulting from the application of small, quick stretches to the medial gastrocnemius muscle. The degree of synchrony found on average was approximately equivalent to that of a single spike occurring once for every four discharges of the reference spike train. Simulations were performed to determine the distortion of monosynaptic excitatory post-synaptic potentials (e.p.s.p.s) obtained by spike-triggered averaging which would be produced by synchrony between the spike trains of Ia and spindle group II afferents of the magnitude found in this study. These simulations indicate that the apparent amplitude would be increased by approximately 4 microV on average. Both the 10-90% rise time and the half-width would increase, the effects being greater for smaller e.p.s.p.s. Consequently, the synchrony found in this study is of most concern in the study of small post-synaptic potentials, such as those due to spindle group II afferents. PMID:3162019

  18. Botulinum toxin in migraine: Role of transport in trigemino-somatic and trigemino-vascular afferents.

    PubMed

    Ramachandran, Roshni; Lam, Carmen; Yaksh, Tony L

    2015-07-01

    Migraine secondary to meningeal input is referred to extracranial regions innervated by somatic afferents that project to homologous regions in the trigeminal nucleus caudalis (TNC). Reported efficacy of extracranial botulinum toxin (BoNT) in treating migraine is surprising since a local extracranial effect of BoNT cannot account for its effect upon meningeal input. We hypothesize that intradermal BoNT acts through central transport in somatic afferents. Anesthetized C57Bl/6 mice (male) received unilateral supraorbital (SO) injections of BoNT-B (1.5 U/40 ?l) or saline. 3 days later, mice received ipsilateral (ipsi)-SO capsaicin (20 ?l of 0.5mM solution) or meningeal capsaicin (4 ?l of 0.35 ?M). Pre-treatment with ipsi-SO BoNT-B i) decreased nocicsponsive ipsilateral wiping behavior following ipsi-SO capsaicin; ii) produced cleavage of VAMP in the V1 region of ipsi-TG and in TG neurons showing WGA after SO injection; iii) reduced expression of c-fos in ipsi-TNC following ipsi-SO capsaicin; iv) reduced c-fos activation and NK-1 internalization in ipsi-TNC secondary to ipsi-meningeal capsaicin; and vi) SO WGA did not label dural afferents. We conclude that BoNT-B is taken up by peripheral afferents and transported to central terminals where it inhibits transmitter release resulting in decreased activation of second order neurons. Further, this study supports the hypothesis that SO BoNT exerts a trans-synaptic action on either the second order neuron (which receives convergent input from the meningeal afferent) or the terminal/TG of the converging meningeal afferent. PMID:25958249

  19. BMP signaling and microtubule organization regulate synaptic strength.

    PubMed

    Ball, R W; Peled, E S; Guerrero, G; Isacoff, E Y

    2015-04-16

    The strength of synaptic transmission between a neuron and multiple postsynaptic partners can vary considerably. We have studied synaptic heterogeneity using the glutamatergic Drosophila neuromuscular junction (NMJ), which contains multiple synaptic connections of varying strengths between a motor axon and muscle fiber. In larval NMJs, there is a gradient of synaptic transmission from weak proximal to strong distal boutons. We imaged synaptic transmission with the postsynaptically targeted fluorescent calcium sensor SynapCam, to investigate the molecular pathways that determine synaptic strength and set up this gradient. We discovered that mutations in the Bone Morphogenetic Protein (BMP) signaling pathway disrupt production of strong distal boutons. We find that strong connections contain unbundled microtubules in the boutons, suggesting a role for microtubule organization in transmission strength. The spastin mutation, which disorganizes microtubules, disrupted the transmission gradient, supporting this interpretation. We propose that the BMP pathway, shown previously to function in the homeostatic regulation of synaptic growth, also boosts synaptic transmission in a spatially selective manner that depends on the microtubule system. PMID:25681521

  20. Quantitative Proteomics of Synaptic and Nonsynaptic Mitochondria: Insights for Synaptic Mitochondrial Vulnerability

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic mitochondria are essential for maintaining calcium homeostasis and producing ATP, processes vital for neuronal integrity and synaptic transmission. Synaptic mitochondria exhibit increased oxidative damage during aging and are more vulnerable to calcium insult than nonsynaptic mitochondria. Why synaptic mitochondria are specifically more susceptible to cumulative damage remains to be determined. In this study, the generation of a super-SILAC mix that served as an appropriate internal standard for mouse brain mitochondria mass spectrometry based analysis allowed for the quantification of the proteomic differences between synaptic and nonsynaptic mitochondria isolated from 10-month-old mice. We identified a total of 2260 common proteins between synaptic and nonsynaptic mitochondria of which 1629 were annotated as mitochondrial. Quantitative proteomic analysis of the proteins common between synaptic and nonsynaptic mitochondria revealed significant differential expression of 522 proteins involved in several pathways including oxidative phosphorylation, mitochondrial fission/fusion, calcium transport, and mitochondrial DNA replication and maintenance. In comparison to nonsynaptic mitochondria, synaptic mitochondria exhibited increased age-associated mitochondrial DNA deletions and decreased bioenergetic function. These findings provide insights into synaptic mitochondrial susceptibility to damage. PMID:24708184

  1. Synaptic dysfunction in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Picconi, Barbara; Piccoli, Giovanni; Calabresi, Paolo

    2012-01-01

    Activity-dependent modifications in synaptic efficacy, such as long-term depression (LTD) and long-term potentiation (LTP), represent key cellular substrates for adaptive motor control and procedural memory. The impairment of these two forms of synaptic plasticity in the nucleus striatum could account for the onset and the progression of motor and cognitive symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD), characterized by the massive degeneration of dopaminergic neurons. In fact, both LTD and LTP are peculiarly controlled and modulated by dopaminergic transmission coming from nigrostriatal terminals. Changes in corticostriatal and nigrostriatal neuronal excitability may influence profoundly the threshold for the induction of synaptic plasticity, and changes in striatal synaptic transmission efficacy are supposed to play a role in the occurrence of PD symptoms. Understanding of these maladaptive forms of synaptic plasticity has mostly come from the analysis of experimental animal models of PD. A series of cellular and synaptic alterations occur in the striatum of experimental parkinsonism in response to the massive dopaminergic loss. In particular, dysfunctions in trafficking and subunit composition of glutamatergic NMDA receptors on striatal efferent neurons contribute to the clinical features of the experimental parkinsonism. Interestingly, it has become increasingly evident that in striatal spiny neurons, the correct assembly of NMDA receptor complex at the postsynaptic site is a major player in early phases of PD, and it is sensitive to distinct degrees of DA denervation. The molecular defects at the basis of PD progression may be not confined just at the postsynaptic neuron: accumulating evidences have recently shown that the genes linked to PD play a critical role at the presynaptic site. DA release into the synaptic cleft relies on a proper presynaptic vesicular transport; impairment of SV trafficking, modification of DA flow, and altered presynaptic plasticity have been described in several PD animal models. Furthermore, an impaired DA turnover has been described in presymptomatic PD patients. Thus, given the pathological events occurring precociously at the synapses of PD patients, post- and presynaptic sites may represent an adequate target for early therapeutic intervention. PMID:22351072

  2. Depressed GABA and glutamate synaptic signaling by 5-HT1A receptors in the nucleus tractus solitarii and their role in cardiorespiratory function.

    PubMed

    Ostrowski, Tim D; Ostrowski, Daniela; Hasser, Eileen M; Kline, David D

    2014-06-15

    Serotonin (5-HT), and its 5-HT1A receptor (5-HT1AR) subtype, is a powerful modulator of the cardiorespiratory system and its sensory reflexes. The nucleus tractus solitarii (nTS) serves as the first central station for visceral afferent integration and is critical for cardiorespiratory reflex responses. However, the physiological and synaptic role of 5-HT1ARs in the nTS is relatively unknown. In the present study, we examined the distribution and modulation of 5-HT1ARs on cardiorespiratory and synaptic parameters in the nTS. 5-HT1ARs were widely distributed to cell bodies within the nTS but not synaptic terminals. In anesthetized rats, activation of 5-HT1ARs by microinjection of the 5-HT1AR agonist 8-OH-DPAT into the caudal nTS decreased minute phrenic neural activity via a reduction in phrenic amplitude. In brain stem slices, 8-OH-DPAT decreased the amplitude of glutamatergic tractus solitarii-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents, and reduced overall spontaneous excitatory nTS network activity. These effects persisted in the presence of GABAA receptor blockade and were antagonized by coapplication of 5-HT1AR blocker WAY-100135. 5-HT1AR blockade alone had no effect on tractus solitarii-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents, but increased excitatory network activity. On the other hand, GABAergic nTS-evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents did not change by activation of the 5-HT1ARs, but spontaneous inhibitory nTS network activity decreased. Blocking 5-HT1ARs tended to increase nTS-evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents and inhibitory network activity. Taken together, 5-HT1ARs in the caudal nTS decrease breathing, likely via attenuation of afferent transmission, as well as overall nTS network activity. PMID:24671532

  3. Ventral hippocampal afferents to the nucleus accumbens regulate susceptibility to depression

    PubMed Central

    Bagot, Rosemary C.; Parise, Eric M.; Peña, Catherine J.; Zhang, Hong-Xing; Maze, Ian; Chaudhury, Dipesh; Persaud, Brianna; Cachope, Roger; Bolaños-Guzmán, Carlos A.; Cheer, Joseph; Deisseroth, Karl; Han, Ming-Hu; Nestler, Eric J.

    2015-01-01

    Enhanced glutamatergic transmission in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), a region critical for reward and motivation, has been implicated in the pathophysiology of depression; however, the afferent source of this increased glutamate tone is not known. The NAc receives glutamatergic inputs from the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), ventral hippocampus (vHIP) and basolateral amygdala (AMY). Here, we demonstrate that glutamatergic vHIP afferents to NAc regulate susceptibility to chronic social defeat stress (CSDS). We observe reduced activity in vHIP in mice resilient to CSDS. Furthermore, attenuation of vHIP-NAc transmission by optogenetic induction of long-term depression is pro-resilient, whereas acute enhancement of this input is pro-susceptible. This effect is specific to vHIP afferents to the NAc, as optogenetic stimulation of either mPFC or AMY afferents to the NAc is pro-resilient. These data indicate that vHIP afferents to NAc uniquely regulate susceptibility to CSDS, highlighting an important, novel circuit-specific mechanism in depression. PMID:25952660

  4. Transmission

    SciTech Connect

    Sugano, K.

    1988-12-27

    A transmission is described which consists of: an input shaft; an output shaft; a first planetary gear set including a first sun gear selectively connectable by a first clutch to the input shaft, a first carrier selectively connectable by a second clutch to the input shaft and a first ring gear connected to the output shaft. The first sun gear selectively held stationary by a first brake, the first carrier is allowed to rotate in the same forward direction as the input shaft when the second clutch is engaged, but prevented from rotating in a reverse direction opposite to the forward direction by a first one-way clutch, the first carrier being selectively held stationary by a second brake; a second planetary gear set including a second sun gear connected to the input shaft, a second carrier connected to the first ring gear and also the the output shaft, and a second ring gear.

  5. Proteomics of brain synapses and molecular dissection of synaptic subdomains.

    PubMed

    Li, Ka Wan; Smit, August B

    2007-11-01

    Synapses form the nuts and bolts of the brain. Synaptic transmission involves an intricate network of synaptic proteins that forms the molecular machinery underlying transmitter release, activation of transmitter receptors, and signal transduction cascades. It is generally believed that neuronal activity-dependent change of synaptic efficacy is at the basis of learning and memory and is encoded by sequential molecular events at the synapse. In the past 2-3?years, a number of proteomics studies have been performed on synaptic subdomains, including synaptic vesicles, postsynaptic density, synaptic lipid raft, synapse protein complexes, as well as on synaptic protein PTMs, notably phosphorylation. The activity-dependent dynamics of protein constituents of the synapse are starting to be examined by quantitative proteomics. It is anticipated that these analyses will yield novel insights into the organization of the synapse, and will generate testable hypotheses of synapse function and regulation both in health and disease. PMID:21136644

  6. Imbalanced suppression of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission onto mouse striatal projection neurons during induction of anesthesia with sevoflurane in vitro.

    PubMed

    Oose, Yoshiyuki; Miura, Masami; Inoue, Ritsuko; Andou, Nozomi; Aosaki, Toshihiko; Nishimura, Kinya

    2012-05-01

    Suppression of movement during induction of anesthesia is mediated through subcortical structures. We studied the effects of a brief, 5-min application of a clinically relevant concentration of sevoflurane (two minimum alveolar concentration) on the electrophysiological activities of the medium spiny neurons (MSNs) of the striatum in brain slice preparations, using a whole-cell patch-clamp technique. We found that sevoflurane slightly depolarized principal neurons in the cortex and the striatum without a significant alteration in spike threshold. Furthermore, it depressed the peak, as well as the net, charge transfer of intrastriatally evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents (eIPSCs) much more strongly than those of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs), and this inhibition was accompanied by an elevated paired-pulse ratio. The strong suppression of eIPSCs paralleled a significant suppression of the frequency, but not the amplitude, of miniature IPSCs (mIPSCs), and was associated with a transient increase in the frequency of spontaneous EPSCs. Treatment with the Ca(2+) channel blocker Cd(2+) restored the frequency of mIPSCs to the control level, indicating sevoflurane's strong presynaptic suppression of γ-aminobutyric acid release in the striatum. In contrast, in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons sevoflurane produced an enhancement of the net charge transfer of IPSCs, while it suppressed EPSCs to an equivalent degree to that in striatal MSNs. These results suggest that, in contrast to its effects on other brain structures, sevoflurane shifts the balance between synaptic excitation and inhibition in the direction of excitation in the striatum, thereby causing involuntary movements during induction of anesthesia by sevoflurane. PMID:22507597

  7. Entorhinal denervation induces homeostatic synaptic scaling of excitatory postsynapses of dentate granule cells in mouse organotypic slice cultures.

    PubMed

    Vlachos, Andreas; Becker, Denise; Jedlicka, Peter; Winkels, Raphael; Roeper, Jochen; Deller, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Denervation-induced changes in excitatory synaptic strength were studied following entorhinal deafferentation of hippocampal granule cells in mature (? 3 weeks old) mouse organotypic entorhino-hippocampal slice cultures. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings revealed an increase in excitatory synaptic strength in response to denervation during the first week after denervation. By the end of the second week synaptic strength had returned to baseline. Because these adaptations occurred in response to the loss of excitatory afferents, they appeared to be in line with a homeostatic adjustment of excitatory synaptic strength. To test whether denervation-induced changes in synaptic strength exploit similar mechanisms as homeostatic synaptic scaling following pharmacological activity blockade, we treated denervated cultures at 2 days post lesion for 2 days with tetrodotoxin. In these cultures, the effects of denervation and activity blockade were not additive, suggesting that similar mechanisms are involved. Finally, we investigated whether entorhinal denervation, which removes afferents from the distal dendrites of granule cells while leaving the associational afferents to the proximal dendrites of granule cells intact, results in a global or a local up-scaling of granule cell synapses. By using computational modeling and local electrical stimulations in Strontium (Sr(2+))-containing bath solution, we found evidence for a lamina-specific increase in excitatory synaptic strength in the denervated outer molecular layer at 3-4 days post lesion. Taken together, our data show that entorhinal denervation results in homeostatic functional changes of excitatory postsynapses of denervated dentate granule cells in vitro. PMID:22403720

  8. Convergence of trigeminal afferents on retractor bulbi motoneurones in the anaesthetized cat.

    PubMed Central

    Grant, K; Horcholle-Bossavit, G

    1983-01-01

    Retractor bulbi motoneurones were identified by intracellular recording of their antidromic invasion following stimulation of the motor axons. Characteristics of excitatory post-synaptic potentials (e.p.s.p.s) evoked by electrical stimulation of long ciliary nerves (corneal afferents), the supraorbital nerve and the ipsilateral or contralateral vibrissae were analysed. Comparison of the orthodromic responses induced by supra-threshold stimulation of the four trigeminal inputs showed that the most powerful excitatory effect was due to corneal afferent stimulation. Excitatory synaptic potentials were followed in some cases by a period of hyperpolarization lasting 15-20 msec. It is suggested that this is an inhibitory potential of post-synaptic origin. Interaction between condition and test e.p.s.p.s evoked by long ciliary nerve and supraorbital nerve stimulation revealed a partial blocking of test e.p.s.p.s over a longer period (more than 30 msec), and it is suggested that inhibitory mechanisms within the trigeminal nucleus may be in part responsible for the absence of facilitation at the level of the motoneurone. PMID:6887029

  9. Calcineurin mediates homeostatic synaptic plasticity by regulating retinoic acid synthesis.

    PubMed

    Arendt, Kristin L; Zhang, Zhenjie; Ganesan, Subhashree; Hintze, Maik; Shin, Maggie M; Tang, Yitai; Cho, Ahryon; Graef, Isabella A; Chen, Lu

    2015-10-20

    Homeostatic synaptic plasticity is a form of non-Hebbian plasticity that maintains stability of the network and fidelity for information processing in response to prolonged perturbation of network and synaptic activity. Prolonged blockade of synaptic activity decreases resting Ca(2+) levels in neurons, thereby inducing retinoic acid (RA) synthesis and RA-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity; however, the signal transduction pathway that links reduced Ca(2+)-levels to RA synthesis remains unknown. Here we identify the Ca(2+)-dependent protein phosphatase calcineurin (CaN) as a key regulator for RA synthesis and homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Prolonged inhibition of CaN activity promotes RA synthesis in neurons, and leads to increased excitatory and decreased inhibitory synaptic transmission. These effects of CaN inhibitors on synaptic transmission are blocked by pharmacological inhibitors of RA synthesis or acute genetic deletion of the RA receptor RARα. Thus, CaN, acting upstream of RA, plays a critical role in gating RA signaling pathway in response to synaptic activity. Moreover, activity blockade-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity is absent in CaN knockout neurons, demonstrating the essential role of CaN in RA-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Interestingly, in GluA1 S831A and S845A knockin mice, CaN inhibitor- and RA-induced regulation of synaptic transmission is intact, suggesting that phosphorylation of GluA1 C-terminal serine residues S831 and S845 is not required for CaN inhibitor- or RA-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Thus, our study uncovers an unforeseen role of CaN in postsynaptic signaling, and defines CaN as the Ca(2+)-sensing signaling molecule that mediates RA-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity. PMID:26443861

  10. Temperature Differentially Facilitates Spontaneous but Not Evoked Glutamate Release from Cranial Visceral Primary Afferents

    PubMed Central

    Fawley, Jessica A.; Hofmann, Mackenzie E.; Largent-Milnes, Tally M.; Andresen, Michael C.

    2015-01-01

    Temperature is fundamentally important to all biological functions including synaptic glutamate release. Vagal afferents from the solitary tract (ST) synapse on second order neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract, and glutamate release at this first central synapse controls autonomic reflex function. Expression of the temperature-sensitive Transient Receptor Potential Vanilloid Type 1 receptor separates ST afferents into C-fibers (TRPV1+) and A-fibers (TRPV1-). Action potential-evoked glutamate release is similar between C- and A-fiber afferents, but TRPV1 expression facilitates a second form of synaptic glutamate release in C-fibers by promoting substantially more spontaneous glutamate release. The influence of temperature on different forms of glutamate release is not well understood. Here we tested how temperature impacts the generation of evoked and spontaneous release of glutamate and its relation to TRPV1 expression. In horizontal brainstem slices of rats, activation of ST primary afferents generated synchronous evoked glutamate release (ST-eEPSCs) at constant latency whose amplitude reflects the probability of evoked glutamate release. The frequency of spontaneous EPSCs in these same neurons measured the probability of spontaneous glutamate release. We measured both forms of glutamate from each neuron during ramp changes in bath temperature of 4–5°C. Spontaneous glutamate release from TRPV1+ closely tracked with these thermal changes indicating changes in the probability of spontaneous glutamate release. In the same neurons, temperature changed axon conduction registered as latency shifts but ST-eEPSC amplitudes were constant and independent of TRPV1 expression. These data indicate that TRPV1-operated glutamate release is independent of action potential-evoked glutamate release in the same neurons. Together, these support the hypothesis that evoked and spontaneous glutamate release originate from two pools of vesicles that are independently modulated and are distinct processes. PMID:25992717

  11. Temperature differentially facilitates spontaneous but not evoked glutamate release from cranial visceral primary afferents.

    PubMed

    Fawley, Jessica A; Hofmann, Mackenzie E; Largent-Milnes, Tally M; Andresen, Michael C

    2015-01-01

    Temperature is fundamentally important to all biological functions including synaptic glutamate release. Vagal afferents from the solitary tract (ST) synapse on second order neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract, and glutamate release at this first central synapse controls autonomic reflex function. Expression of the temperature-sensitive Transient Receptor Potential Vanilloid Type 1 receptor separates ST afferents into C-fibers (TRPV1+) and A-fibers (TRPV1-). Action potential-evoked glutamate release is similar between C- and A-fiber afferents, but TRPV1 expression facilitates a second form of synaptic glutamate release in C-fibers by promoting substantially more spontaneous glutamate release. The influence of temperature on different forms of glutamate release is not well understood. Here we tested how temperature impacts the generation of evoked and spontaneous release of glutamate and its relation to TRPV1 expression. In horizontal brainstem slices of rats, activation of ST primary afferents generated synchronous evoked glutamate release (ST-eEPSCs) at constant latency whose amplitude reflects the probability of evoked glutamate release. The frequency of spontaneous EPSCs in these same neurons measured the probability of spontaneous glutamate release. We measured both forms of glutamate from each neuron during ramp changes in bath temperature of 4-5 °C. Spontaneous glutamate release from TRPV1+ closely tracked with these thermal changes indicating changes in the probability of spontaneous glutamate release. In the same neurons, temperature changed axon conduction registered as latency shifts but ST-eEPSC amplitudes were constant and independent of TRPV1 expression. These data indicate that TRPV1-operated glutamate release is independent of action potential-evoked glutamate release in the same neurons. Together, these support the hypothesis that evoked and spontaneous glutamate release originate from two pools of vesicles that are independently modulated and are distinct processes. PMID:25992717

  12. AMPA receptor inhibition by synaptically released zinc.

    PubMed

    Kalappa, Bopanna I; Anderson, Charles T; Goldberg, Jacob M; Lippard, Stephen J; Tzounopoulos, Thanos

    2015-12-22

    The vast amount of fast excitatory neurotransmission in the mammalian central nervous system is mediated by AMPA-subtype glutamate receptors (AMPARs). As a result, AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission is implicated in nearly all aspects of brain development, function, and plasticity. Despite the central role of AMPARs in neurobiology, the fine-tuning of synaptic AMPA responses by endogenous modulators remains poorly understood. Here we provide evidence that endogenous zinc, released by single presynaptic action potentials, inhibits synaptic AMPA currents in the dorsal cochlear nucleus (DCN) and hippocampus. Exposure to loud sound reduces presynaptic zinc levels in the DCN and abolishes zinc inhibition, implicating zinc in experience-dependent AMPAR synaptic plasticity. Our results establish zinc as an activity-dependent, endogenous modulator of AMPARs that tunes fast excitatory neurotransmission and plasticity in glutamatergic synapses. PMID:26647187

  13. Cerebellar Synaptic Plasticity and the Credit Assignment Problem.

    PubMed

    Jörntell, Henrik

    2016-04-01

    The mechanism by which a learnt synaptic weight change can contribute to learning or adaptation of brain function is a type of credit assignment problem, which is a key issue for many parts of the brain. In the cerebellum, detailed knowledge not only of the local circuitry connectivity but also of the topography of different sources of afferent/external information makes this problem particularly tractable. In addition, multiple forms of synaptic plasticity and their general rules of induction have been identified. In this review, we will discuss the possible roles of synaptic and cellular plasticity at specific locations in contributing to behavioral changes. Focus will be on the parts of the cerebellum that are devoted to limb control, which constitute a large proportion of the cortex and where the knowledge of the external connectivity is particularly well known. From this perspective, a number of sites of synaptic plasticity appear to primarily have the function of balancing the overall level of activity in the cerebellar circuitry, whereas the locations at which synaptic plasticity leads to functional changes in terms of limb control are more limited. Specifically, the postsynaptic forms of long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) at the parallel fiber synapses made on interneurons and Purkinje cells, respectively, are the types of plasticity that mediate the widest associative capacity and the tightest link between the synaptic change and the external functions that are to be controlled. PMID:25417189

  14. Abnormal Synaptic Vesicle Biogenesis in Drosophila Synaptogyrin Mutants

    PubMed Central

    Stevens, Robin J.; Akbergenova, Yulia; Jorquera, Ramon A.; Littleton, J. Troy

    2012-01-01

    Sustained neuronal communication relies on the coordinated activity of multiple proteins that regulate synaptic vesicle biogenesis and cycling within the presynaptic terminal. Synaptogyrin and synaptophysin are conserved MARVEL domain-containing transmembrane proteins that are among the most abundant synaptic vesicle constituents, although their role in the synaptic vesicle cycle has remained elusive. To further investigate the function of these proteins, we generated and characterized a synaptogyrin (gyr) null mutant in Drosophila, whose genome encodes a single synaptogyrin isoform and lacks a synaptophysin homolog. We demonstrate that Drosophila synaptogyrin plays a modulatory role in synaptic vesicle biogenesis at larval neuromuscular junctions. Drosophila lacking synaptogyrin are viable and fertile and have no overt deficits in motor function. However, ultrastructural analysis of gyr larvae revealed increased synaptic vesicle diameter and enhanced variability in the size of synaptic vesicles. In addition, the resolution of endocytic cisternae into synaptic vesicles in response to strong stimulation is defective in gyr mutants. Electrophysiological analysis demonstrated an increase in quantal size and a concomitant decrease in quantal content, suggesting functional consequences for transmission caused by the loss of synaptogyrin. Furthermore, high-frequency stimulation resulted in increased facilitation and a delay in recovery from synaptic depression, indicating that synaptic vesicle exo-endocytosis is abnormally regulated during intense stimulation conditions. These results suggest that synaptogyrin modulates the synaptic vesicle exo-endocytic cycle and is required for the proper biogenesis of synaptic vesicles at nerve terminals. PMID:23238721

  15. Projection of cat jaw muscle spindle afferents related to intrafusal fibre influence.

    PubMed

    Taylor, A; Durbaba, R; Rodgers, J F

    1993-06-01

    1. A method of classification of muscle spindle afferents using succinylcholine (SCh) and ramp stretches has recently been described, which appears to estimate separately the strength of influence of bag1 (b1) and of bag2 (b2) intrafusal fibres. Increase in dynamic difference (delta DD) indicates b1 influence whilst increase in initial frequency (delta IF) indicates b2 influence. The significance of this classification has now been examined by correlation with the strength of synaptic projection of jaw muscle spindle afferents to the fifth motor nucleus (MotV) and the supratrigeminal region (STR) in anaesthetized cats. 2. Projection strength was estimated by computing the extracellular focal synaptic potential (FSP) from spike-triggered averages of 1024 sweeps at 100 microns intervals along tracks through STR and MotV. Trigger pulses were derived from spindle afferent cell bodies of the jaw-closer muscles recorded in the mesencephalic trigeminal nucleus, and characterized by the effect of SCh on their responses to ramp-and-hold stretches. 3. The maximum size of FSPs in tracks traversing STR and MotV ranged from 2.08 to 36.99 microV with a mean of 7.55 microV. The amplitudes were bimodally distributed into roughly equal-sized groups with high and low amplitude FSPs. 4. Mean values of delta IF were significantly greater for the group with large FSPs than for those with small FSPs. There were no significant differences in delta DD. FSP amplitude was significantly positively correlated with delta IF, but not with delta DD. 5. Spindle afferents with high values of FSP amplitude in MotV had a wide range of values of delta DD (b1b2c and b2c groups), while units with large FSPs in STR were all in the b2c category. Some evidence is presented to indicate that this reflects a preferential projection of secondary afferents to the STR. 6. For those units with projection to both STR and to MotV, there was a significant positive correlation between FSP amplitude in the two nuclei. 7. These results indicate that the extent of the b2 influence on spindle afferents predicts the central projection strength better than does the b1 influence. This finding is discussed from the viewpoint of possible developmental and functional issues. PMID:8229855

  16. Movement and afferent representations in human motor areas: a simultaneous neuroimaging and transcranial magnetic/peripheral nerve-stimulation study

    PubMed Central

    Shitara, H.; Shinozaki, T.; Takagishi, K.; Honda, M.; Hanakawa, T.

    2013-01-01

    Neuroimaging combined with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to primary motor cortex (M1) is an emerging technique that can examine motor-system functionality through evoked activity. However, because sensory afferents from twitching muscles are widely represented in motor areas the amount of evoked activity directly resulting from TMS remains unclear. We delivered suprathreshold TMS to left M1 or gave electrical right median nerve stimulation (MNS) in 18 healthy volunteers while simultaneously conducting functional magnetic resonance imaging and monitoring with electromyography (EMG). We examined in detail the localization of TMS-, muscle afferent- and superficial afferent-induced activity in M1 subdivisions. Muscle afferent- and TMS-evoked activity occurred mainly in rostral M1, while superficial afferents generated a slightly different activation distribution. In 12 participants who yielded quantifiable EMG, differences in brain activity ascribed to differences in movement-size were adjusted using integrated information from the EMGs. Sensory components only explained 10–20% of the suprathreshold TMS-induced activity, indicating that locally and remotely evoked activity in motor areas mostly resulted from the recruitment of neural and synaptic activity. The present study appears to justify the use of fMRI combined with suprathreshold TMS to M1 for evoked motor network imaging. PMID:24062660

  17. Inhibitory Interneurons That Express GFP in the PrP-GFP Mouse Spinal Cord Are Morphologically Heterogeneous, Innervated by Several Classes of Primary Afferent and Include Lamina I Projection Neurons among Their Postsynaptic Targets.

    PubMed

    Ganley, Robert P; Iwagaki, Noboru; del Rio, Patricia; Baseer, Najma; Dickie, Allen C; Boyle, Kieran A; Polgár, Erika; Watanabe, Masahiko; Abraira, Victoria E; Zimmerman, Amanda; Riddell, John S; Todd, Andrew J

    2015-05-13

    The superficial dorsal horn of the spinal cord contains numerous inhibitory interneurons, which regulate the transmission of information perceived as touch, pain, or itch. Despite the importance of these cells, our understanding of their roles in the neuronal circuitry is limited by the difficulty in identifying functional populations. One group that has been identified and characterized consists of cells in the mouse that express green fluorescent protein (GFP) under control of the prion protein (PrP) promoter. Previous reports suggested that PrP-GFP cells belonged to a single morphological class (central cells), received inputs exclusively from unmyelinated primary afferents, and had axons that remained in lamina II. However, we recently reported that the PrP-GFP cells expressed neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) and/or galanin, and it has been shown that nNOS-expressing cells are more diverse in their morphology and synaptic connections. We therefore used a combined electrophysiological, pharmacological, and anatomical approach to reexamine the PrP-GFP cells. We provide evidence that they are morphologically diverse (corresponding to "unclassified" cells) and receive synaptic input from a variety of primary afferents, with convergence onto individual cells. We also show that their axons project into adjacent laminae and that they target putative projection neurons in lamina I. This indicates that the neuronal circuitry involving PrP-GFP cells is more complex than previously recognized, and suggests that they are likely to have several distinct roles in regulating the flow of somatosensory information through the dorsal horn. PMID:25972186

  18. Inhibitory Interneurons That Express GFP in the PrP-GFP Mouse Spinal Cord Are Morphologically Heterogeneous, Innervated by Several Classes of Primary Afferent and Include Lamina I Projection Neurons among Their Postsynaptic Targets

    PubMed Central

    Ganley, Robert P.; Iwagaki, Noboru; del Rio, Patricia; Baseer, Najma; Dickie, Allen C.; Boyle, Kieran A.; Polgár, Erika; Watanabe, Masahiko; Abraira, Victoria E; Zimmerman, Amanda

    2015-01-01

    The superficial dorsal horn of the spinal cord contains numerous inhibitory interneurons, which regulate the transmission of information perceived as touch, pain, or itch. Despite the importance of these cells, our understanding of their roles in the neuronal circuitry is limited by the difficulty in identifying functional populations. One group that has been identified and characterized consists of cells in the mouse that express green fluorescent protein (GFP) under control of the prion protein (PrP) promoter. Previous reports suggested that PrP-GFP cells belonged to a single morphological class (central cells), received inputs exclusively from unmyelinated primary afferents, and had axons that remained in lamina II. However, we recently reported that the PrP-GFP cells expressed neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) and/or galanin, and it has been shown that nNOS-expressing cells are more diverse in their morphology and synaptic connections. We therefore used a combined electrophysiological, pharmacological, and anatomical approach to reexamine the PrP-GFP cells. We provide evidence that they are morphologically diverse (corresponding to “unclassified” cells) and receive synaptic input from a variety of primary afferents, with convergence onto individual cells. We also show that their axons project into adjacent laminae and that they target putative projection neurons in lamina I. This indicates that the neuronal circuitry involving PrP-GFP cells is more complex than previously recognized, and suggests that they are likely to have several distinct roles in regulating the flow of somatosensory information through the dorsal horn. PMID:25972186

  19. Proopiomelanocortin neurons in nucleus tractus solitarius are activated by visceral afferents: regulation by cholecystokinin and opioids.

    PubMed

    Appleyard, Suzanne M; Bailey, Timothy W; Doyle, Mark W; Jin, Young-Ho; Smart, James L; Low, Malcolm J; Andresen, Michael C

    2005-04-01

    The nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) receives dense terminations from cranial visceral afferents, including those from the gastrointestinal (GI) system. Although the NTS integrates peripheral satiety signals and relays this signal to central feeding centers, little is known about which NTS neurons are involved or what mechanisms are responsible. Proopiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons are good candidates for GI integration, because disruption of the POMC gene leads to severe obesity and hyperphagia. Here, we used POMC-enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) transgenic mice to identify NTS POMC neurons. Intraperitoneal administration of cholecystokinin (CCK) induced c-fos gene expression in NTS POMC-EGFP neurons, suggesting that they are activated by afferents stimulated by the satiety hormone. We tested the synaptic relationship of these neurons to visceral afferents and their modulation by CCK and opioids using patch recordings in horizontal brain slices. Electrical activation of the solitary tract (ST) evoked EPSCs in NTS POMC-EGFP neurons. The invariant latencies, low failure rates, and substantial paired-pulse depression of the ST-evoked EPSCs indicate that NTS POMC-EGFP neurons are second-order neurons directly contacted by afferent terminals. The EPSCs were blocked by the glutamate antagonist 2,3-dihydroxy-6-nitro-7-sulfonyl-benzo[f]quinoxaline. CCK increased the amplitude of the ST-stimulated EPSCs and the frequency of miniature EPSCs, effects attenuated by the CCK1 receptor antagonist lorglumide. In contrast, the orexigenic opioid agonists [D-Ala(2), N-Me-Phe(4), Gly-ol(5)]-enkephalin and met-enkephalin inhibited both ST-stimulated EPSCs and the frequency of miniature EPSCs. These findings identify a potential satiety pathway in which visceral afferents directly activate NTS POMC-EGFP neurons with excitatory inputs that are appropriately modulated by appetite regulators. PMID:15814788

  20. Piezo2 expression in corneal afferent neurons.

    PubMed

    Bron, Romke; Wood, Rhiannon J; Brock, James A; Ivanusic, Jason J

    2014-09-01

    Recently, a novel class of mechanically sensitive channels has been identified and have been called Piezo channels. In this study, we explored Piezo channel expression in sensory neurons supplying the guinea pig corneal epithelium, which have well-defined modalities in this species. We hypothesized that a proportion of corneal afferent neurons express Piezo2, and that these neurons are neurochemically distinct from corneal polymodal nociceptors or cold-sensing neurons. We used a combination of retrograde tracing to identify corneal afferent neurons and double label in situ hybridization and/or immunohistochemistry to determine their molecular and/or neurochemical profile. We found that Piezo2 expression occurs in ?26% of trigeminal ganglion neurons and 30% of corneal afferent neurons. Piezo2 corneal afferent neurons are almost exclusively non-calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP)-immunoreactive (-IR), medium- to large-sized neurons that are NF200-IR, suggesting they are not corneal polymodal nociceptors. There was no coexpression of Piezo2 and transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily M member 8 (TRPM8) transcripts in any corneal afferent neurons, further suggesting that Piezo2 is not expressed in corneal cold-sensing neurons. We also noted that TRPM8-IR or CGRP-IR corneal afferent neurons are almost entirely small and lack NF200-IR. Piezo2 expression occurs in a neurochemically distinct subpopulation of corneal afferent neurons that are not polymodal nociceptors or cold-sensing neurons, and is likely confined to a subpopulation of pure mechano-nociceptors in the cornea. This provides the first evidence in an in vivo system that Piezo2 is a strong candidate for a channel that transduces noxious mechanical stimuli. PMID:24549492

  1. Inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission in hippocampal neurons by levetiracetam involves Zn²?-dependent GABA type A receptor-mediated presynaptic modulation.

    PubMed

    Wakita, Masahito; Kotani, Naoki; Kogure, Kyuya; Akaike, Norio

    2014-02-01

    Levetiracetam (LEV) is an antiepileptic drug with a unique but as yet not fully resolved mechanism of action. Therefore, by use of a simplified rat-isolated nerve-bouton preparation, we have investigated how LEV modulates glutamatergic transmission from mossy fiber terminals to hippocampal CA3 neurons. Action potential-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (eEPSCs) were recorded using a conventional whole-cell patch-clamp recording configuration in voltage-clamp mode. The antiepileptic drug phenytoin decreased glutamatergic eEPSCs in a concentration-dependent fashion by inhibiting voltage-dependent Na? and Ca²? channel currents. In contrast, LEV had no effect on eEPSCs or voltage-dependent Na? or Ca²? channel currents. Activation of presynaptic GABA type A (GABA(A)) receptors by muscimol induced presynaptic inhibition of eEPSCs, resulting from depolarization block. Low concentrations of Zn²?, which had no effect on eEPSCs, voltage-dependent Na? or Ca²? channel currents, or glutamate receptor-mediated whole cell currents, reduced the muscimol-induced presynaptic inhibition. LEV applied in the continuous presence of 1 µM muscimol and 1 µM Zn²? reversed this Zn²? modulation on eEPSCs. The antagonizing effect of LEV on Zn²?-induced presynaptic GABA(A) receptor inhibition was also observed with the Zn²? chelators Ca-EDTA and RhodZin-3. Our results clearly show that LEV removes the Zn²?-induced suppression of GABA(A)-mediated presynaptic inhibition, resulting in a presynaptic decrease in glutamate-mediated excitatory transmission. Our results provide a novel mechanism by which LEV may inhibit neuronal activity. PMID:24259680