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Sample records for afferent synaptic transmission

  1. 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).

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. Nicotinic modulation of glutamatergic synaptic transmission in region CA3 of the hippocampus

    E-print Network

    Hasselmo, Michael

    Nicotinic modulation of glutamatergic synaptic transmission in region CA3 of the hippocampus Lisa M, hippocampus, memory, nicotine Abstract Cholinergic modulation of synaptic transmission in the hippocampus of hippocampal region CA3, we have explored the effect of nicotine on the afferent connections of stratum

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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…

  8. 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

  9. Astroglial Metabolic Networks Sustain Hippocampal Synaptic Transmission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rouach, Nathalie; Koulakoff, Annette; Abudara, Veronica; Willecke, Klaus; Giaume, Christian

    2008-12-01

    Astrocytes provide metabolic substrates to neurons in an activity-dependent manner. However, the molecular mechanisms involved in this function, as well as its role in synaptic transmission, remain unclear. Here, we show that the gap-junction subunit proteins connexin 43 and 30 allow intercellular trafficking of glucose and its metabolites through astroglial networks. This trafficking is regulated by glutamatergic synaptic activity mediated by AMPA receptors. In the absence of extracellular glucose, the delivery of glucose or lactate to astrocytes sustains glutamatergic synaptic transmission and epileptiform activity only when they are connected by gap junctions. These results indicate that astroglial gap junctions provide an activity-dependent intercellular pathway for the delivery of energetic metabolites from blood vessels to distal neurons.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. omega-Conotoxin inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission evoked by dorsal root stimulation in rat superficial dorsal horn.

    PubMed

    Motin, Leonid; Adams, David J

    2008-10-01

    A number of omega-conotoxins are potent and selective antagonists of N-type voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) and are potentially effective as analgesic agents. omega-Conotoxins CVID and CVIB, venom peptides from Conus catus, inhibit N-type and N/P/Q-type VGCCs, respectively, in rat dorsal root ganglion sensory neurons. In the present study, we tested the effects of five different omega-conotoxins, CVID, CVIB, MVIIA, MVIIC and GVIA, on excitatory synaptic transmission between primary afferents and dorsal horn superficial lamina neurons of rat spinal cord. The N-type VGCC antagonists CVID (200nM) and MVIIA (500nM) completely and irreversibly inhibited excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) in the dorsal horn superficial lamina. The N- and P/Q-type VGCC antagonist CVIB (200nM) reversibly reduced evoked EPSC amplitude an average of 34+/-8%, whereas MVIIC (200nM) had no effect on excitatory synaptic transmission. In neurons receiving polysynaptic input, CVIB reduced both the EPSC amplitude and the "success rate" calculated as the relative number of primary afferent stimulations that resulted in postsynaptic responses. These results indicate that (i) the analgesic action of omega-conotoxins that antagonise N-type VGCCs may be attributed to inhibition of neurotransmission between primary afferents and superficial dorsal horn neurons, (ii) nociceptive synaptic transmission between primary afferents and superficial lamina neurons is mediated predominantly by N-type VGCCs, and (iii) in contrast to the irreversible inhibition by CVID, MVIIA and GVIA, the inhibition of excitatory monosynaptic transmission by CVIB is reversible. PMID:18644398

  13. 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

  14. Effects of prostaglandin E2 on synaptic transmission in the rat spinal trigeminal subnucleus caudalis.

    PubMed

    Mizutani, Yuka; Ohi, Yoshiaki; Kimura, Satoko; Miyazawa, Ken; Goto, Shigemi; Haji, Akira

    2015-11-01

    The spinal trigeminal subnucleus caudalis (Vc) receives preferentially nociceptive afferent signals from the orofacial area. Nociceptive stimuli to the orofacial area induce cyclooxygenase both peripherally and centrally, which can synthesize a major prostanoid prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) that implicates in diverse physiological functions. To clarify the roles of centrally-synthesized PGE2 in nociception, effects of exogenous PGE2 on synaptic transmission in the Vc neurons were investigated in the rat brainstem slice. Spontaneously occurring excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs and sIPSCs) were recorded, respectively, under pharmacological blockade of inhibitory and excitatory transmission by whole-cell patch-clamp mode. Perfusion of PGE2 (1-5?M) increased the frequency of sIPSCs in a concentration-dependent manner but had no significant effect on the amplitude. Similarly to the effects on sIPSCs, PGE2 increased the sEPSC frequency without any effect on the amplitude. These facilitatory effects of PGE2 on spontaneous synaptic transmissions were blocked by an EP1 antagonist SC19220 but not by an EP4 antagonist AH23848. Electrical stimulation of the trigeminal tract evoked short latency EPSCs (eEPSCs) in the Vc neurons. PGE2 (5?M) was ineffective on the eEPSCs. The present study demonstrated that PGE2 facilitated spontaneous synaptic transmissions in the Vc neurons through activating the presynaptic EP1 receptors but had no effect on the trigeminal tract-mediated excitatory transmission. These results suggest that centrally-synthesized PGE2 modifies the synaptic transmission in the Vc region, thereby contributing to the processing of nociceptive signals originated from the orofacial area. PMID:26320551

  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. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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…

  19. Non-synaptic transmission at autonomic neuroeffector junctions Geoffrey Burnstock *

    E-print Network

    Burnstock, Geoffrey

    -motor; Smooth muscle; Sympathetic; Ureter; Vas deferens 1. Introduction Non-synaptic transmission at autonomic, 2004b; Gabella, 1995). It also occurs in the central nervous system (see Vizi, this issue). Evidence to occur in cerebral blood arteries, where there is a continuously increasing density of sympathetic

  20. 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

  1. Effect of Synaptic Transmission on Viral Fitness in HIV Infection

    PubMed Central

    Komarova, Natalia L.; Levy, David N.; Wodarz, Dominik

    2012-01-01

    HIV can spread through its target cell population either via cell-free transmission, or by cell-to-cell transmission, presumably through virological synapses. Synaptic transmission entails the transfer of tens to hundreds of viruses per synapse, a fraction of which successfully integrate into the target cell genome. It is currently not understood how synaptic transmission affects viral fitness. Using a mathematical model, we investigate how different synaptic transmission strategies, defined by the number of viruses passed per synapse, influence the basic reproductive ratio of the virus, R0, and virus load. In the most basic scenario, the model suggests that R0 is maximized if a single virus particle is transferred per synapse. R0 decreases and the infection eventually cannot be maintained for larger numbers of transferred viruses, because multiple infection of the same cell wastes viruses that could otherwise enter uninfected cells. To explain the relatively large number of HIV copies transferred per synapse, we consider additional biological assumptions under which an intermediate number of viruses transferred per synapse could maximize R0. These include an increased burst size in multiply infected cells, the saturation of anti-viral factors upon infection of cells, and rate limiting steps during the process of synapse formation. PMID:23166585

  2. 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

  3. 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 ?A), 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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…

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. Intramuscular AAV delivery of NT-3 alters synaptic transmission to motoneurons in adult rats

    PubMed Central

    Petruska, Jeffrey C.; Kitay, Brandon; Boyce, Vanessa S.; Kaspar, Brian; Pearse, Damien; Gage, Fred H.; Mendell, Lorne M.

    2010-01-01

    We examined whether elevating levels of neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) in the spinal cord and dorsal root ganglion (DRG) would alter connections made by muscle spindle afferent fibers on motoneurons. Adeno-associated virus (AAV) serotypes AAV1, AAV2 and AAV5, selected for their tropism profile, were engineered with the NT-3 gene and administered to the medial gastrocnemius muscle in adult rats. ELISA studies in muscle, DRG and spinal cord revealed that NT-3 concentration in all tissues peaked about 3 months after a single viral injection; after 6 months NT-3 concentration returned to normal values. Intracellular recording in triceps surae motoneurons revealed complex electrophysiological changes. Moderate elevation in cord NT-3 resulted in diminished segmental excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) amplitude, perhaps as a result of the observed decrease in motoneuron input resistance. With further elevation in NT-3 expression, the decline in EPSP amplitude was reversed indicating that NT-3 at higher concentration could increase EPSP amplitude. No correlation was observed between EPSP amplitude and NT-3 concentration in the DRG. Treatment with control viruses could elevate NT-3 levels minimally resulting in measurable electrophysiological effects, perhaps as a result of inflammation associated with injection. EPSPs elicited by stimulation of the ventrolateral funiculus underwent a consistent decline in amplitude independent of NT-3 level. These novel correlations between modified NT-3 expression and single-cell electrophysiological parameters indicate that intramuscular administration of AAV(NT-3) can exert long lasting effects on synaptic transmission to motoneurons. This approach to neurotrophin delivery could be useful in modifying spinal function after injury. PMID:20849530

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Extracellular ATP hydrolysis inhibits synaptic transmission by increasing ph buffering in the synaptic cleft.

    PubMed

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

    2014-05-01

    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

  16. Influence of an extracellular acidosis on excitatory synaptic transmission and long-term potentiation in the CA1 region of rat hippocampal slices.

    PubMed

    Hsu, K S; Liang, Y C; Huang, C C

    2000-11-01

    The effects of extracellular acidification on the synaptic function and neuronal excitability were investigated on the hippocampal CA1 neurons. A decrease of extracellular pH from 7.4 to 6.7 did not alter either the resting membrane potential or the neuronal membrane input resistance. Extracellularly recorded field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) and population spikes (PSs) were significantly reduced by acidosis. Additionally, the amplitude of presynaptic fiber volley was also reduced. The sensitivity of postsynaptic neurons to N-methyl-D-aspartate, but not to alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid, was depressed by acidosis. Lowering of extracellular pH did not significantly affect the magnitude of paired-pulse facilitation (PPF) of synaptic transmission. Acidosis also reversibly limited the sustained repetitive firing (RF) of Na(+)-dependent action potentials elicited by injection of depolarizing current pulses into the pyramidal cells. The limitation of RF by extracellular acidification was accompanied by the reduction of the maximal rate of rise (;V(max)) of the action potentials and the amplitude of afterhyperpolarization. Neither the Na (+)/H (+) antiporter blocker 5-(N -ethyl -N -isopropyl)-amiloride nor the selective adenosine A (1) receptor antagonist 1,3-dipropyl -8-cyclopentylxanthine, however, affected the acidosis -induced synaptic depression. It was also found that acidosis did not affect either the induction r maintenance of long -term potentiation (LTP) at Schaffer collateral -CA 1 synapses. These results suggest that the extracellular acidosis -induced synaptic depression is likely to result from an inhibition of presynaptic Na (+) conductance, thereby decreasing the amplitude of action potentials in individual afferent fibers or the number of afferent fiber activation to stimuli and then indirectly affecting the signaling processes contributing to trigger neurotransmitter release. PMID:11054810

  17. Synaptic transmission and the susceptibility of HIV infection to anti-viral drugs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komarova, Natalia L.; Levy, David N.; Wodarz, Dominik

    2013-07-01

    Cell-to-cell viral transmission via virological synapses has been argued to reduce susceptibility of the virus population to anti-viral drugs through multiple infection of cells, contributing to low-level viral persistence during therapy. Using a mathematical framework, we examine the role of synaptic transmission in treatment susceptibility. A key factor is the relative probability of individual virions to infect a cell during free-virus and synaptic transmission, a currently unknown quantity. If this infection probability is higher for free-virus transmission, then treatment susceptibility is lowest if one virus is transferred per synapse, and multiple infection of cells increases susceptibility. In the opposite case, treatment susceptibility is minimized for an intermediate number of virions transferred per synapse. Hence, multiple infection via synapses does not simply lower treatment susceptibility. Without further experimental investigations, one cannot conclude that synaptic transmission provides an additional mechanism for the virus to persist at low levels during anti-viral therapy.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. Regulation of Synaptic Transmission and Plasticity by Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    McKay, Bruce E.; Placzek, Andon N.; Dani, John A.

    2007-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are widely expressed throughout the central nervous system and participate in a variety of physiological functions. Recent advances have revealed roles of nAChRs in the regulation of synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity, particularly in the hippocampus and midbrain dopamine centers. In general, activation of nAChRs causes membrane depolarization and directly and indirectly increases the intracellular calcium concentration. Thus, when nAChRs are expressed on presynaptic membranes their activation generally increases the probability of neurotransmitter release. When expressed on postsynaptic membranes, nAChR-initiated calcium signals and depolarization activate intracellular signaling mechanisms and gene transcription. Together, the presynaptic and postsynaptic effects of nAChRs generate and facilitate the induction of long-term changes in synaptic transmission. The direction of hippocampal nAChR-mediated synaptic plasticity –either potentiation or depression – depends on the timing of nAChR activation relative to coincident presynaptic and postsynaptic electrical activity, and also depends on the location of cholinergic stimulation within the local network. Therapeutic activation of nAChRs may prove efficacious in the treatment of neuropathologies where synaptic transmission is compromised, as in Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease. PMID:17689497

  4. Multiple roles for mTOR signaling in both glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Weston, Matthew C.; Chen, Hongmei; Swann, John W.

    2012-01-01

    Summary The mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling pathway in neurons integrates a variety of extracellular signals to produce appropriate translational responses. mTOR signaling is hyperactive in neurological syndromes in both humans and mouse models that are characterized by epilepsy, autism and cognitive disturbances. In addition, rapamycin, a clinically important immunosuppressant, is a specific and potent inhibitor of mTOR signaling. While mTOR is known to regulate growth and synaptic plasticity of glutamatergic neurons, its effects on basic parameters of synaptic transmission are less well studied, and its role in regulating GABAergic transmission is unexplored. We therefore performed an electrophysiological and morphological comparison of glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons in which mTOR signaling was either increased by loss of the repressor Pten or decreased by treatment with rapamycin. We found that hyperactive mTOR signaling increased evoked synaptic responses in both glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons by approximately 50%, due to an increase in the number of synaptic vesicles available for release, the number of synapses formed and the miniature event size. Prolonged (72 hours) rapamycin treatment prevented these abnormalities and also decreased synaptic transmission in wild-type glutamatergic, but not GABAergic, neurons. Further analyses suggested that hyperactivation of the mTOR pathway also impairs presynaptic function, possibly by interfering with vesicle fusion. Despite this presynaptic impairment, the net effect of Pten loss is enhanced synaptic transmission in both GABAergic and glutamatergic neurons, which has numerous implications – depending on where in the brain mutations of an mTOR suppressor gene takes place during development. PMID:22895726

  5. 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

  6. Temporal Dynamics of Graded Synaptic Transmission in the Lobster Stomatogastric Ganglion

    E-print Network

    Abbott, Laurence

    Temporal Dynamics of Graded Synaptic Transmission in the Lobster Stomatogastric Ganglion Yair Manor of the lobster Panulirus interruptus is a graded func- tion of membrane potential, with a threshold of the spiny lobster Panulirus interruptus. The pyloric network of the stomatogastric ganglion (STG) of P

  7. GPCR Mediated Regulation of Synaptic Transmission Katherine M. Betke, Christopher A. Wells, and Heidi E. Hamm*

    E-print Network

    Alford, Simon

    GPCR Mediated Regulation of Synaptic Transmission Katherine M. Betke, Christopher A. Wells @ Pierce, Nashville, Tennessee 37232-6600 Katherine M. Betke: katherine.m.betke@Vanderbilt.Edu; Christopher(3): 304­321. doi:10.1016/j.pneurobio.2012.01.009. NIH

  8. Thermal Preconditioning and Heat-Shock Protein 72 Preserve Synaptic Transmission during Thermal Stress

    E-print Network

    Robertson, Meldrum

    Thermal Preconditioning and Heat-Shock Protein 72 Preserve Synaptic Transmission during Thermal, exposing the mammalian CNS to nonle- thal heat stress (i.e., thermal preconditioning) increases levels that generates respiratory rhythm (the pre- Bo¨ tzinger complex), we show that thermal preconditioning has

  9. 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...

  10. The Chemokine MIP-1?/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-?/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

  11. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-09-01

    Alterations in the alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionate receptor (AMPA-R) 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

  13. Effect of VGLUT inhibitors on glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the rodent hippocampus and prefrontal cortex.

    PubMed

    Neale, S A; Copeland, C S; Salt, T E

    2014-07-01

    Vesicular glutamate transporters (VGLUTs) are known to be important in the uptake of glutamate into vesicles in the presynaptic terminal; thereby playing a role in synaptic function. VGLUT dysfunction has also been suggested in neurological and psychiatric disorders such as epilepsy and schizophrenia. A number of compounds have been identified as VGLUT inhibitors; however, little is known as to how these compounds affect synaptic transmission. We therefore investigated the effects of structurally unrelated VGLUT inhibitors on synaptic transmission in the rodent hippocampus and prefrontal cortex. In the CA1 and dentate gyrus regions of the in vitro slice preparation of mouse hippocampus, AMPA receptor-mediated field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) were evoked in response to Schaffer collateral/commissural pathway stimulation. Application of the VGLUT inhibitors Rose Bengal (RB), Congo Red (CR) or Chicago Sky Blue 6B (CB) resulted in a concentration-related reduction of fEPSP amplitudes. RB (30?M) or CB (300?M) also depressed NMDA receptor-mediated responses in the CA1 region. The naturally occurring kynurenine Xanthurenic Acid (XA) is reported to be a VGLUT inhibitor. We found XA attenuated both AMPA and NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission. The potency order of the VGLUT inhibitors was consistent with literature Ki values for VGLUT inhibition. Impaired glutamatergic neurotransmission is believed to contribute to schizophrenia, and VGLUTs have also been implicated in this disease. We therefore investigated the effect of VGLUT inhibition in the prefrontal cortex. Application of the VGLUT inhibitors RB or CB resulted in a concentration-dependent reduction in the amplitude of glutamate receptor-mediated fEPSPs recorded in layer V/VI in response to stimulation in the forceps minor. We conclude that VGLUT inhibitors can modulate glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the PFC and hippocampus. This could be important in the pathophysiology of nervous system disorders and might represent a target for developing novel pharmacological therapies. PMID:24121008

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

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2015-01-01

    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

  15. Variance-mean analysis: a simple and reliable approach for investigating synaptic transmission and modulation.

    PubMed

    Clements, John D

    2003-12-15

    The mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity can be investigated by analyzing synaptic amplitude fluctuations before and after a synaptic modulation. However, many older fluctuation analysis techniques rely on models of synaptic transmission that incorporate unrealistic simplifying assumptions or have too many free parameters. As a result, these techniques have sometimes produced counterintuitive or contradictory results. In contrast, the variance-mean (V-M) technique requires fewer assumptions and is more robust than previous approaches. It achieves these improvements by focusing on two key parameters of synaptic transmission, the average probability that a vesicle is released from a synaptic terminal following a presynaptic stimulus (Pav), and the average amplitude of the postsynaptic response to a vesicle of transmitter (Qav). To apply V-M analysis, a fluctuating postsynaptic current (PSC) is recorded at several different extracellular Ca2+ or Cd2+ concentrations. The variance of the PSC amplitude is plotted against the mean amplitude at each concentration, forming a parabola. The degree of parabolic curvature estimates Pav, and the limiting slope under low release conditions estimates Qav. The shape of the V-M parabola changes in characteristic ways following each of the three standard forms of synaptic modulation: a change in Qav (postsynaptic), a change in Pav (presynaptic), or a change in the number of terminals (N). The approach does not require specialized software, and can even be implemented as a purely graphical technique. V-M analysis has been used to investigate the site of expression of long-term potentiation and the mechanisms underlying paired-pulse depression. This report presents a detailed mathematical development of the technique, and explores the limiting conditions under which it can confidently be applied. V-M analysis requires fewer than 100 PSC amplitude measurements to accurately estimate Pav and Qav, and it can reliably identify whether a synaptic modulation occurs at a pre- or postsynaptic site. In contrast to other techniques, V-M analysis is largely insensitive to recording noise, nonuniform modulation and intrinsic variability of the unitary synaptic amplitude. PMID:14667541

  16. Intrinsic and Synaptic Long-Term Depression of NTS Relay of Nociceptin-Sensitive and Capsaicin-Sensitive Cardiopulmonary Afferents Hyperactivity

    E-print Network

    Feinberg-Zadek, Paula

    The nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) in the caudal medulla is a gateway for a variety of cardiopulmonary afferents important for homeostatic regulation and defense against airway and cardiovascular insults and is a key ...

  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. 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

  20. Heterogeneity in synaptic transmission along a Drosophila larval motor axon.

    PubMed

    Guerrero, Giovanna; Reiff, Dierk F; Rieff, Dierk F; Agarwal, Gautam; Ball, Robin W; Borst, Alexander; Goodman, Corey S; Isacoff, Ehud Y

    2005-09-01

    At the Drosophila melanogaster larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ), a motor neuron releases glutamate from 30-100 boutons onto the muscle it innervates. How transmission strength is distributed among the boutons of the NMJ is unknown. To address this, we created synapcam, a version of the Ca2+ reporter Cameleon. Synapcam localizes to the postsynaptic terminal and selectively reports Ca2+ influx through glutamate receptors (GluRs) with single-impulse and single-bouton resolution. GluR-based Ca2+ signals were uniform within a given connection (that is, a given bouton/postsynaptic terminal pair) but differed considerably among connections of an NMJ. A steep gradient of transmission strength was observed along axonal branches, from weak proximal connections to strong distal ones. Presynaptic imaging showed a matching axonal gradient, with higher Ca2+ influx and exocytosis at distal boutons. The results suggest that transmission strength is mainly determined presynaptically at the level of individual boutons, possibly by one or more factors existing in a gradient. PMID:16116446

  1. Heterogeneity in synaptic transmission along a Drosophila larval motor axon

    PubMed Central

    Guerrero, Giovanna; Agarwal, Gautam; Reiff, Dierk F.; Ball, Robin W.; Borst, Alexander; Goodman, Corey S.

    2005-01-01

    Summary At the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ), a motor neuron releases glutamate from 30-100 boutons onto the muscle it innervates. How transmission strength is distributed among the boutons of the NMJ is unknown. To address this, we created SynapCam, a version of the Ca2+ reporter Cameleon. SynapCam localizes to the postsynapse and selectively reveals Ca2+ influx through glutamate receptors (GluRs) with single-impulse and single-bouton resolution. GluR-based Ca2+ signals were uniform within a given connection (i.e., bouton and postsynapse pair), but differed considerably among connections of an NMJ. A steep gradient of transmission strength was observed along axonal branches, from weak proximal connections to strong distal ones. Presynaptic imaging revealed a matching axonal gradient, with higher Ca2+ influx and exocytosis at distal boutons. The results suggest that transmission strength is mainly determined presynaptically at the level of individual boutons, possibly by one or more factors existing in a gradient. PMID:16116446

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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...

  5. Laser-evoked synaptic transmission in cultured hippocampal neurons channelrhodopsin-2 delivered by adeno-associated virus

    E-print Network

    Wang, Jennifer

    We present a method for studying synaptic transmission in mass cultures of dissociated hippocampal neurons based on patch clamp recording combined with laser stimulation of neurons expressing channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2). Our ...

  6. 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

  7. DELETION OF PRESYNAPTIC ADENOSINE A1 RECEPTORS IMPAIRS THE RECOVERY OF SYNAPTIC TRANSMISSION AFTER HYPOXIA

    PubMed Central

    ARRIGONI, E.; CROCKER, A. J.; SAPER, C. B.; GREENE, R. W.; SCAMMELL, T. E.

    2008-01-01

    Adenosine protects neurons during hypoxia by inhibiting excitatory synaptic transmission and preventing NMDA receptor activation. Using an adeno-associated viral (AAV) vector containing Cre recombinase, we have focally deleted adenosine A1 receptors in specific hippocampal regions of adult mice. Recently, we found that deletion of A1 receptors in the CA1 area blocks the postsynaptic responses to adenosine in CA1 pyramidal neurons, and deletion of A1 receptors in CA3 neurons abolishes the presynaptic effects of adenosine on the Schaffer collateral input [J Neurosci 23 (2003) 5762]. In the current study, we used this technique to delete A1 receptors focally from CA3 neurons to investigate whether presynaptic A1 receptors protect synaptic transmission from hypoxia. We studied the effects of prolonged (1 h) hypoxia on the evoked field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) in the CA1 region using in vitro slices. Focal deletion of the presynaptic A1 receptors on the Schaffer collateral input slowed the depression of the fEPSPs in response to hypoxia and impaired the recovery of the fEPSPs after hypoxia. Delayed responses to hypoxia linearly correlated with impaired recovery. These findings provide direct evidence that the neuroprotective role of adenosine during hypoxia depends on the rapid inhibition of synaptic transmission by the activation of presynaptic A1 receptors. PMID:15837119

  8. Sex differences of excitatory synaptic transmission in RA projection neurons of adult zebra finches.

    PubMed

    Wang, Songhua; Meng, Wei; Liu, Shaoyi; Liao, Congshu; Huang, Qingyao; Li, Dongfeng

    2014-10-17

    Zebra finches are ideal animals to investigate sex difference in songbirds. Only males can sing. The brain nuclei controlling song learning and production in males are considerably larger than in females. The robust nucleus of the arcopallium (RA) is a premotor nucleus, playing a key role in controlling singing. RA receives denser synapse inputs in males than in females. Sex differences of excitatory synaptic transmission in the RA projection neurons (PNs) have not been reported. In the present study, using whole-cell voltage-clamp recording, spontaneous EPSCs (sEPSCs) and miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs) of RA PNs in the intact males and females were recorded. The average frequency and amplitude of sEPSCs/mEPSCs in the intact males were higher than females. The half-width and decay time of sEPSCs/mEPSCs in the intact males were longer than females. In order to verify whether these sex differences related to sex steroids, males were castrated. The average frequency of sEPSCs/mEPSCs in castrated males was lower than intact males and was similar to in females; the amplitude was not changed after castrating. These results demonstrate the sexually dimorphic of the excitatory synaptic transmission in the RA PNs, the RA PNs in males receive more excitatory synaptic transmission and these sex differences were partly affected by sex hormones. These findings contribute to further illuminate the neural mechanisms under the sexually dimorphism in song production of adult zebra finches. PMID:25220700

  9. Selective activation of microglia facilitates synaptic strength.

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-18

    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. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. Thrombin regulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity: implications for health and disease

    PubMed Central

    Ben Shimon, Marina; Lenz, Maximilian; Ikenberg, Benno; Becker, Denise; Shavit Stein, Efrat; Chapman, Joab; Tanne, David; Pick, Chaim G.; Blatt, Ilan; Neufeld, Miri; Vlachos, Andreas; Maggio, Nicola

    2015-01-01

    Thrombin, a serine protease involved in the blood coagulation cascade has been shown to affect neural function following blood-brain barrier breakdown. However, several lines of evidence exist that thrombin is also expressed in the brain under physiological conditions, suggesting an involvement of thrombin in the regulation of normal brain functions. Here, we review ours’ as well as others’ recent work on the role of thrombin in synaptic transmission and plasticity through direct or indirect activation of Protease-Activated Receptor-1 (PAR1). These studies propose a novel role of thrombin in synaptic plasticity, both in physiology as well as in neurological diseases associated with increased brain thrombin/PAR1 levels. PMID:25954157

  15. 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 ?9?10 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. miR-153 Regulates SNAP-25, Synaptic Transmission, and Neuronal Development

    PubMed Central

    Olena, Abigail F.; Cha, Diana J.; Perdigoto, Ana L.; Marshall, Andrew F.; Carter, Bruce D.; Broadie, Kendal; Patton, James G.

    2013-01-01

    SNAP-25 is a core component of the trimeric SNARE complex mediating vesicle exocytosis during membrane addition for neuronal growth, neuropeptide/growth factor secretion, and neurotransmitter release during synaptic transmission. Here, we report a novel microRNA mechanism of SNAP-25 regulation controlling motor neuron development, neurosecretion, synaptic activity, and movement in zebrafish. Loss of miR-153 causes overexpression of SNAP-25 and consequent hyperactive movement in early zebrafish embryos. Conversely, overexpression of miR-153 causes SNAP-25 down regulation resulting in near complete paralysis, mimicking the effects of treatment with Botulinum neurotoxin. miR-153-dependent changes in synaptic activity at the neuromuscular junction are consistent with the observed movement defects. Underlying the movement defects, perturbation of miR-153 function causes dramatic developmental changes in motor neuron patterning and branching. Together, our results indicate that precise control of SNAP-25 expression by miR-153 is critically important for proper neuronal patterning as well as neurotransmission. PMID:23451149

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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, ? = 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

  3. The roles of STP and LTP in synaptic encoding.

    PubMed

    Volianskis, Arturas; Collingridge, Graham L; Jensen, Morten S

    2013-01-01

    Long-term potentiation (LTP), a cellular model of learning and memory, is generally regarded as a unitary phenomenon that alters the strength of synaptic transmission by increasing the postsynaptic response to the release of a quantum of neurotransmitter. LTP, at CA3-CA1 synapses in the hippocampus, contains a stimulation-labile phase of short-term potentiation (STP, or transient LTP, t-LTP) that decays into stable LTP. By studying the responses of populations of neurons to brief bursts of high-frequency afferent stimulation before and after the induction of LTP, we found that synaptic responses during bursts are potentiated equally during LTP but not during STP. We show that STP modulates the frequency response of synaptic transmission whereas LTP preserves the fidelity. Thus, STP and LTP have different functional consequences for the transfer of synaptic information. PMID:23638365

  4. 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

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

    PubMed

    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

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. New tools for targeted disruption of cholinergic synaptic transmission in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Mejia, Monica; Heghinian, Mari D; Marí, Frank; Godenschwege, Tanja A

    2013-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are pentameric ligand-gated ion channels. The ?7 subtype of nAChRs is involved in neurological pathologies such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, addiction, epilepsy and autism spectrum disorders. The Drosophila melanogaster ?7 (D?7) has the closest sequence homology to the vertebrate ?7 subunit and it can form homopentameric receptors just as the vertebrate counterpart. The D?7 subunits are essential for the function of the Giant Fiber circuit, which mediates the escape response of the fly. To further characterize the receptor function, we generated different missense mutations in the D?7 nAChR's ligand binding domain. We characterized the effects of targeted expression of two UAS-constructs carrying a single mutation, D197A and Y195T, as well as a UAS-construct carrying a triple D77T, L117Q, I196P mutation in a D?7 null mutant and in a wild type background. Expression of the triple mutation was able to restore the function of the circuit in D?7 null mutants and had no disruptive effects when expressed in wild type. In contrast, both single mutations severely disrupted the synaptic transmission of D?7-dependent but not glutamatergic or gap junction dependent synapses in wild type background, and did not or only partially rescued the synaptic defects of the null mutant. These observations are consistent with the formation of hybrid receptors, consisting of D197A or Y195T subunits and wild type D?7 subunits, in which the binding of acetylcholine or acetylcholine-induced conformational changes of the D?7 receptor are altered and causes inhibition of cholinergic responses. Thus targeted expression of D197A or Y195T can be used to selectively disrupt synaptic transmission of D?7-dependent synapses in neuronal circuits. Hence, these constructs can be used as tools to study learning and memory or addiction associated behaviors by allowing the manipulation of neuronal processing in the circuits without affecting other cellular signaling. PMID:23737994

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. Adrenergic receptors modulate motoneuron excitability, sensory synaptic transmission and muscle spasms after chronic spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Rank, M M; Murray, K C; Stephens, M J; D'Amico, J; Gorassini, M A; Bennett, D J

    2011-01-01

    The brain stem provides most of the noradrenaline (NA) present in the spinal cord, which functions to both increase spinal motoneuron excitability and inhibit sensory afferent transmission to motoneurons (excitatory postsynaptic potentials; EPSPs). NA increases motoneuron excitability by facilitating calcium-mediated persistent inward currents (Ca PICs) that are crucial for sustained motoneuron firing. Spinal cord transection eliminates most NA and accordingly causes an immediate loss of PICs and emergence of exaggerated EPSPs. However, with time PICs recover, and thus the exaggerated EPSPs can then readily trigger these PICs, which in turn produce muscle spasms. Here we examined the contribution of adrenergic receptors to spasms in chronic spinal rats. Selective activation of the ?(1A) adrenergic receptor with the agonists methoxamine or A61603 facilitated Ca PIC and spasm activity, recorded both in vivo and in vitro. In contrast, the ?(2) receptor agonists clonidine and UK14303 did not facilitate Ca PICs, but did decrease the EPSPs that trigger spasms. Moreover, in the absence of agonists, spasms recorded in vivo were inhibited by the ?(1) receptor antagonists WB4010, prazosin, and REC15/2739, and increased by the ?(2) receptor antagonist RX821001, suggesting that both adrenergic receptors were endogenously active. In contrast, spasm activity recorded in the isolated in vitro cord was inhibited only by the ?(1) antagonists that block constitutive receptor activity (activity in the absence of NA; inverse agonists, WB4010 and prazosin) and not by the neutral antagonist REC15/2739, which only blocks conventional NA-mediated receptor activity. RX821001 had no effect in vitro even though it is an ?(2) receptor inverse agonist. Our results suggest that after chronic spinal cord injury Ca PICs and spasms are facilitated, in part, by constitutive activity in ?(1) adrenergic receptors. Additionally, peripherally derived NA (or similar ligand) activates both ?(1) and ?(2) adrenergic receptors, controlling PICs and EPSPs, respectively. PMID:21047936

  14. Autapses and networks of hippocampal neurons exhibit distinct synaptic transmission phenotypes in the absence of synaptotagmin I

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Huisheng; Dean, Camin; Arthur, Christopher P.; Dong, Min; Chapman, Edwin R.

    2009-01-01

    Synaptotagmin-I (syt-I) is required for rapid neurotransmitter release in mouse hippocampal neurons. However, contradictory results have been reported regarding evoked and spontaneous secretion from syt-I knockout (KO) neurons. Here, we compared synaptic transmission in two different hippocampal neuron preparations: autaptic cultures in which a single isolated cell innervates itself, and dissociated mass cultures in which individual cells are innervated by neighboring cells. In autaptic cultures, the total extent of evoked release, size of readily releasable pool of synaptic vesicles, and release probability, were unchanged in syt-I KO neurons. In contrast, in cultures containing multiple interconnected neurons, total evoked release, the number of docked vesicles, and release probability, were significantly reduced in syt-I KO neurons. Using a micro-network system in which we varied the number of cells on an island, we found that the frequency of spontaneous synaptic vesicle fusion events (minis) was unchanged in syt-I KO neurons when ? 2 cells were present on an island. However, in micro-networks composed of ? 3 neurons, mini frequency was increased three to five-fold in syt-I KO neurons compared to wild-type. Moreover, inter-neuronal synapses exhibited higher rates of spontaneous release than autaptic synapses. This higher rate was due to an increase in release probability because excitatory hippocampal neurons in micro-networks formed a set number of synapses per cell regardless of the number of connected neurons. Thus, aspects of synaptic transmission differ between autaptic and dissociated cultures and the synaptic transmission phenotype, due to loss of syt-I, is dictated by the connectivity of neurons. PMID:19515907

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Electroacupuncture and A-317491 depress the transmission of pain on primary afferent mediated by the P2X3 receptor in rats with chronic neuropathic pain states.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wan-Sheng; Tu, Wen-Zhan; Cheng, Rui-Dong; He, Rong; Ruan, Li-Hua; Zhang, Li; Gong, Yong-Sheng; Fan, Xiao-Fang; Hu, Jie; Cheng, Bo; Lai, Yin-Ping; Zou, En-Miao; Jiang, Song-He

    2014-12-01

    P2X is a family of ligand-gated ion channels that act through adenosine ATP. The P2X3 receptor plays a key role in the transmission of neuropathic pain at peripheral and spinal sites. Electroacupuncture (EA) has been used to treat neuropathic pain effectively. To determine the role of EA in neuropathic pain mediated through the P2X3 receptor in dorsal root ganglion neurons and the spinal cord, a chronic constriction injury (CCI) model was used. Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into four groups: sham CCI, CCI, CCI plus contralateral EA, and CCI plus ipsilateral EA. The mechanical withdrawal threshold (MWT) and thermal withdrawal latency (TWL) were recorded. Furthermore, the expression of the P2X3 receptor was evaluated through Western blotting and immunofluorescence. The effects of EA and A-317491 were investigated through the whole-cell patch-clamp method and intrathecal administration. Our results show that the MWT and TWL of EA groups were higher than those in the CCI group, whereas the expression of the P2X3 receptor was lower than that in the CCI group. However, no significant difference was detected between the two EA groups. EA depressed the currents created by ATP and the upregulation of the P2X3 receptor in CCI rats. Additionally, EA was more potent in reducing mechanical allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia when combined with A-317491 through intrathecal administration. These results show that both contralateral and ipsilateral EA might inhibit the primary afferent transmission of neuropathic pain induced through the P2X3 receptor. In addition, EA and A-317491 might have an additive effect in inhibiting the transmission of pain mediated by the P2X3 receptor. PMID:25041872

  2. 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

  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. 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

  5. [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

  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. Adenosine Released by Astrocytes Contributes to Hypoxia-Induced Modulation of Synaptic Transmission

    E-print Network

    Newman, Eric A.

    ARAQUE,2 * AND VALENTIN CE ~NA1 1 Unidad Asociada Neurodeath, UCLM-CSIC, Departamento de Ciencias Medicas-induced excitatory synaptic depression might be mediated by adeno- sine release from astrocytes. We used techniques in purified cultured astrocytes. In hippocampal slices, hypoxia induced a tran- sient depression

  8. 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

  9. 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

  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. 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

  12. 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

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

    2013-03-20

    Ataxia, episodic dyskinesia, and thalamocortical seizures are associated with an inherited loss of P/Q-type voltage-gated Ca(2+) channel function. P/Q-type channels are widely expressed throughout the neuraxis, obscuring identification of the critical networks underlying these complex neurological disorders. We showed recently 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 study, we introduce a new mouse model with a selective knock-out of P/Q-type channels in rhombic-lip-derived neurons including the 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

  13. The Excitatory Synaptic Transmission of the Nucleus of Solitary Tract Was Potentiated by Chronic Myocardial Infarction in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Ban; Zhang, Zi-Nan; Lei, Jie; Li, Yun-Qing; Du, Jian-Qing; Chen, Tao

    2015-01-01

    Angina pectoris is a common clinical symptom that often results from myocardial infarction. One typical characteristic of angina pectoris is that the pain does not match the severity of the myocardial ischemia. One possible explanation is that the intensity of cardiac nociceptive information could be dynamically regulated by certain brain areas. As an important nucleus for processing cardiac nociception, the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) has been studied to some extent. However, until now, the morphological and functional involvement of the NTS in chronic myocardial infarction (CMI) has remained unknown. In the present study, by exploring left anterior descending coronary artery ligation surgery, we found that the number of synaptophysin-immunoreactive puncta and Fos-immunoreactive neurons in the rat NTS two weeks after ligation surgery increased significantly. Excitatory pre- and postsynaptic transmission was potentiated. A bath application of a Ca2+ channel inhibitor GABApentin and Ca2+ permeable AMPA receptor antagonist NASPM could reverse the potentiated pre- and postsynaptic transmission, respectively. Meanwhile, rats with CMI showed significantly increased visceral pain behaviors. Microinjection of GABApentin or NASPM into the NTS decreased the CMI-induced visceral pain behaviors. In sum, our results suggest that the NTS is an important area for the process of cardiac afference in chronic myocardial infarction condition. PMID:25756354

  14. 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

  15. Transducin translocation contributes to rod survival and enhances synaptic transmission from rods to rod bipolar cells.

    PubMed

    Majumder, Anurima; Pahlberg, Johan; Boyd, Kimberly K; Kerov, Vasily; Kolandaivelu, Saravanan; Ramamurthy, Visvanathan; Sampath, Alapakkam P; Artemyev, Nikolai O

    2013-07-23

    In rod photoreceptors, several phototransduction components display light-dependent translocation between cellular compartments. Notably, the G protein transducin translocates from rod outer segments to inner segments/spherules in bright light, but the functional consequences of translocation remain unclear. We generated transgenic mice where light-induced transducin translocation is impaired. These mice exhibited slow photoreceptor degeneration, which was prevented if they were dark-reared. Physiological recordings showed that control and transgenic rods and rod bipolar cells displayed similar sensitivity in darkness. After bright light exposure, control rods were more strongly desensitized than transgenic rods. However, in rod bipolar cells, this effect was reversed; transgenic rod bipolar cells were more strongly desensitized than control. This sensitivity reversal indicates that transducin translocation in rods enhances signaling to rod bipolar cells. The enhancement could not be explained by modulation of inner segment conductances or the voltage sensitivity of the synaptic Ca(2+) current, suggesting interactions of transducin with the synaptic machinery. PMID:23836670

  16. 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

  17. Nicotinic modulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity in cortico-limbic circuits

    PubMed Central

    Mansvelder, Huibert D.; Mertz, Marjolijn; Role, Lorna W.

    2009-01-01

    Nicotine is the principle addictive agent delivered via cigarette smoking. The addictive activity of nicotine is due to potent interactions with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) on neurons in the reinforcement and reward circuits of the brain. Beyond its addictive actions, nicotine is thought to have positive effects on performance in working memory and short-term attention-related tasks. The brain areas involved in such behaviors are part of an extensive cortico-limbic network that includes relays between prefrontal cortex (PFC) and cingulate cortex (CC), hippocampus, amygdala, ventral tegmental area (VTA) and the nucleus accumbens (nAcc). Nicotine activates a broad array of nAChRs subtypes that can be targeted to pre- as well as peri- and post-synaptic locations in these areas. Thereby, nicotine not only excites different types of neurons, but it also perturbs baseline neuronal communication, alters synaptic properties and modulates synaptic plasticity. In this review we focus on recent findings on nicotinic modulation of cortical circuits and their targets fields, which show that acute and transient activation of nicotinic receptors in cortico-limbic circuits triggers a series of events that affects cognitive performance in a long lasting manner. Understanding how nicotine induces long-term changes in synapses and alters plasticity in the cortico-limbic circuits is essential to determining how these areas interact in decoding fundamental aspects of cognition and reward. PMID:19560048

  18. 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

  19. DISC1 Protein Regulates ?-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

  20. 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

  1. Interaction of Stoned and Synaptotagmin in Synaptic Vesicle Endocytosis

    E-print Network

    Broadie, Kendal S.

    Interaction of Stoned and Synaptotagmin in Synaptic Vesicle Endocytosis Tim Fergestad and Kendal endocytosis. We conclude that Stoned proteins control synaptic transmission strength by mediating; synaptic vesicle; endocytosis The rapid recycling and biogenesis of synaptic vesicles (SVs) is essential

  2. The sigma-1 receptor modulates NMDA receptor synaptic transmission and plasticity via SK channels in rat hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    Martina, Marzia; Turcotte, Marie-Eve B; Halman, Samantha; Bergeron, Richard

    2007-01-01

    The sigma receptor (?R), once considered a subtype of the opioid receptor, is now described as a distinct pharmacological entity. Modulation of N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) functions by ?R-1 ligands is well documented; however, its mechanism is not fully understood. Using patch-clamp whole-cell recordings in CA1 pyramidal cells of rat hippocampus and (+)pentazocine, a high-affinity ?R-1 agonist, we found that ?R-1 activation potentiates NMDAR responses and long-term potentiation (LTP) by preventing a small conductance Ca2+-activated K+ current (SK channels), known to shunt NMDAR responses, to open. Therefore, the block of SK channels and the resulting increased Ca2+ influx through the NMDAR enhances NMDAR responses and LTP. These results emphasize the importance of the ?R-1 as postsynaptic regulator of synaptic transmission. PMID:17068104

  3. 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

  4. Frequency-Dependent Gating of Synaptic Transmission and Plasticity by Dopamine

    PubMed Central

    Ito, Hiroshi T.; Schuman, Erin M.

    2007-01-01

    The neurotransmitter dopamine (DA) plays an important role in learning by enhancing the saliency of behaviorally relevant stimuli. How this stimulus selection is achieved on the cellular level, however, is not known. Here, in recordings from hippocampal slices, we show that DA acts specifically at the direct cortical input to hippocampal area CA1 (the temporoammonic (TA) pathway) to filter the excitatory drive onto pyramidal neurons based on the input frequency. During low-frequency patterns of stimulation, DA depressed excitatory TA inputs to both CA1 pyramidal neurons and local inhibitory GABAergic interneurons via presynaptic inhibition. In contrast, during high-frequency patterns of stimulation, DA potently facilitated the TA excitatory drive onto CA1 pyramidal neurons, owing to diminished feedforward inhibition. Analysis of DA's effects over a broad range of stimulus frequencies indicates that it acts as a high-pass filter, augmenting the response to high-frequency inputs while diminishing the impact of low-frequency inputs. These modulatory effects of DA exert a profound influence on activity-dependent forms of synaptic plasticity at both TA-CA1 and Schaffer-collateral (SC)-CA1 synapses. Taken together, our data demonstrate that DA acts as a gate on the direct cortical input to the hippocampus, modulating information flow and synaptic plasticity in a frequency-dependent manner. PMID:18946543

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. Linker mutations reveal the complexity of synaptotagmin 1 action during synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Liu, Huisheng; Bai, Hua; Xue, Renhao; Takahashi, Hirohide; Edwardson, J Michael; Chapman, Edwin R

    2014-05-01

    The Ca(2+) sensor for rapid synaptic vesicle exocytosis, synaptotagmin 1 (syt), is largely composed of two Ca(2+)-sensing C2 domains, C2A and C2B. We investigated the apparent synergy between the tandem C2 domains by altering the length and rigidity of the linker that connects them. The behavior of the linker mutants revealed a correlation between the ability of the C2 domains to penetrate membranes in response to Ca(2+) and to drive evoked neurotransmitter release in cultured mouse neurons, uncovering a step in excitation-secretion coupling. Using atomic force microscopy, we found that the synergy between these C2 domains involved intra-molecular interactions between them. Thus, syt function is markedly affected by changes in the physical nature of the linker that connects its tandem C2 domains. Moreover, the linker mutations uncoupled syt-mediated regulation of evoked and spontaneous release, revealing that syt also acts as a fusion clamp before the Ca(2+) trigger. PMID:24657966

  8. 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

  9. The Effects of Nerve Growth Factor on Nicotinic Synaptic Transmission in Mouse Airway Parasympathetic Neurons.

    PubMed

    Weigand, Letitia A; Kwong, Kevin; Myers, Allen C

    2015-10-01

    In autonomic ganglia, acetylcholine (ACh) is released from preganglionic nerve terminals and binds to nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChRs) on postganglionic neurons, resulting in a brief, short-lived synaptic potential (fast excitatory postsynaptic potential [fEPSP]). Although nerve growth factor (NGF) is known to affect sensory and sympathetic nerves, especially during development, little is known regarding its effect on parasympathetic nerves, especially on adult neurons. Elevated levels of NGF and NGF-mediated neural plasticity may have a role in airway diseases, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. In this study, we characterize the composition and response of nAChRs in parasympathetic neurons located in lower airways of mice, and note the effects of NGF on fEPSPs and on nicotinic currents. Based on immunohistochemical staining, nAChRs are made up of ?-3 and ?-4 subunits; in addition, tropomyosin-related kinase A, the receptor for NGF, is also expressed by the neurons. Vagus nerve evoked fEPSPs and inward currents evoked by a nicotinic receptor agonist (1,1-dimethyl-4-phenylpiperazinium) were increased by NGF. NGF also affected the action potential after hyperpolarization. These studies were done in mice, which are routinely used to study airway diseases, such as asthma, where the allergen-induced contraction of airway smooth muscle has a well-defined parasympathetic cholinergic component. PMID:25647301

  10. 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

  11. Physiological effects of sustained blockade of excitatory synaptic transmission on spontaneously active developing neuronal networksan

    E-print Network

    van Pelt, Jaap

    Research, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands b Neuroscience Research School, University of Amsterdam quantitatively analyzed in organotypic neonatal rat visual cortex explants at different ages in vitro transmission. In the presence of APV, a selective NMDA receptor blocker, 1±2- (but not 3-) week-old cultures

  12. TH-9 (a theophylline derivative) induces long-lasting enhancement in excitatory synaptic transmission in the rat hippocampus that is occluded by frequency-dependent plasticity in vitro.

    PubMed

    Nashawi, H; Bartl, T; Bartl, P; Novotny, L; Oriowo, M A; Kombian, S B

    2012-09-18

    Dementia, especially Alzheimer's disease, is a rapidly increasing medical condition that presents with enormous challenge for treatment. It is characterized by impairment in memory and cognitive function often accompanied by changes in synaptic transmission and plasticity in relevant brain regions such as the hippocampus. We recently synthesized TH-9, a conjugate racetam-methylxanthine compound and tested if it had potential for enhancing synaptic function and possibly, plasticity, by examining its effect on hippocampal fast excitatory synaptic transmission and plasticity. Field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) were recorded in the CA1 hippocampal area of naïve juvenile male Sprague-Dawley rats using conventional electrophysiological recording techniques. TH-9 caused a concentration-dependent, long-lasting enhancement in fEPSPs. This effect was blocked by adenosine A1, acetylcholine (muscarinic and nicotinic) and glutamate (N-methyl-d-aspartate) receptor antagonists but not by a ?-aminobutyric acid receptor type B (GABA(B)) receptor antagonist. The TH-9 effect was also blocked by enhancing intracellular cyclic adenosine monophosphate and inhibiting protein kinase A. Pretreatment with TH-9 did not prevent the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP) or long-term depression (LTD). Conversely, induction of LTP or LTD completely occluded the ability of TH-9 to enhance fEPSPs. Thus, TH-9 utilizes cholinergic and adenosinergic mechanisms to cause long-lasting enhancement in fEPSPs which were occluded by LTP and LTD. TH-9 may therefore employ similar or convergent mechanisms with frequency-dependent synaptic plasticities to produce the observed long-lasting enhancement in synaptic transmission and may thus, have potential for use in improving memory. PMID:22728090

  13. Biphasic modulation of synaptic transmission by hypertonicity at the embryonic Drosophila neuromuscular junction

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Kazuhiro; Okamoto, Tomonori; Kidokoro, Yoshiaki

    2002-01-01

    Puff-application of hypertonic saline (sucrose added to external saline) causes a transient increase in the frequency of spontaneous miniature synaptic currents (mSCs) at the neuromuscular junctions of Drosophila embryos. The frequency gradually returns to pre-application levels. External Ca2+ is not needed for this response, but it may modify it. At 50 mm added sucrose, for example, enhanced spontaneous release was observed only in the presence of external Ca2+, suggesting that Ca2+ augments the response. In a high-K+ solution, in which the basal mSC frequency was elevated, higher sucrose concentrations produced an increase in mSC frequency that was followed (during and after the hypertonic exposure) by depression, with the magnitude of both effects increasing with hypertonicity between 100 and 500 mm. Evoked release by nerve stimulation showed only depression in response to hypertonicity. We do not believe that the depression of spontaneous or evoked release can be explained by the depletion of releasable quanta, however, since the frequency of quantal release did not reach levels compatible with this explanation and the enhancement and depression could be obtained independent of one another. In a mutant lacking neuronal synaptobrevin, only the depression of mSC frequency was induced by hypertonicity. Conversely, only the enhancing effect was observed in wild-type embryos when the mSC frequency was elevated with forskolin in Ca2+-free saline. In cultured embryonic Drosophila neurons, Ca2+ signals that were induced by high K+ and detected by Fura-2, were reduced by hypertonicity, suggesting that the depressing response is due to a direct effect of hypertonicity on Ca2+ influx. PMID:12433954

  14. Enhancement of peptidergic synaptic transmission by catecholamines in the bullfrog sympathetic ganglion.

    PubMed

    Ushijima, H; Katayama, Y; Nishi, S

    1988-08-01

    Extracellular recordings were made from postganglionic branches or ganglion cells of the 9th or 10th ganglia of the paravertebral sympathetic chain of the bullfrog in vitro. Tetanic preganglionic stimulation, applied to nerve fibers between the 7th and 8th ganglia, elicited cholinergic (muscarinic) and non-cholinergic synaptic responses in nicotinized preparations. These were an early after-discharge (EAD) and a late after-discharge (LAD), respectively. Brief application (3-10 min) of catecholamines augmented the LAD and this augmentation continued for 90-120 min after catecholamine withdrawal. In contrast, these catecholamines did not significantly augment the EAD. The catecholamine effects were concentration-dependent within the range 1-100 microM, and the order of the potency was isoprenaline greater than adrenaline greater than noradrenaline greater than dopamine = phenylephrine. The catecholamine-induced augmentation was blocked by propranolol (0.1-1 microM) and pindolol (1-10 microM), but not by phentolamine (up to 10 microM). The catecholamine-evoked augmentation of the LAD could be mimicked by dibutyryl cyclic adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate (dbc-AMP) at 1-50 microM. However, similar concentrations of cyclic adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate (c-AMP), cyclic guanosine 3',5'-monophosphate (c-GMP) and dibutyryl c-GMP (dbc-GMP) had no effect. None of cyclic nucleotides appreciably augmented the EAD. Methylxanthines, 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine and caffeine, facilitated the LAD and potentiated the isoprenaline-induced augmentation of the LAD. The excitatory actions of luteinizing hormone releasing hormone (LHRH) were also enhanced by (-)-isoprenaline and dbc-AMP. The former was prevented by propranolol.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:2459183

  15. [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

  16. Amino acid receptor mediated excitatory synaptic transmission in the cat red nucleus.

    PubMed Central

    Davies, J; Miller, A J; Sheardown, M J

    1986-01-01

    A study has been made of the effects of the selective N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist, 2-amino-5-phosphonovalerate (APV), and the broad spectrum excitatory amino acid antagonists, gamma-D-glutamylglycine (gamma-DGG), gamma-D-glutamylaminomethylsulphonate (GAMS), 4(p-chlorobenzoyl)-cis-piperazine-2, 3-dicarboxylate (pCB-PzDA) and kynurenate, have been examined on excitation evoked on neurones in the magnocellular red nucleus (m.r.n.) of the anaesthetized cat by stimulation of the interpositus nucleus (i.p.n.) and sensorimotor cortex, and by ionophoresed excitant amino acid agonists. The profile of activity of the excitatory amino acid antagonists on m.r.n. neurones was similar to that described on neurones in other areas of the central nervous system. APV selectively depressed responses to N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA), whereas the broader spectrum antagonists reduced responses to kainate and quisqualate as well as to NMDA. Neuronal responses to L-glutamate and L-aspartate were depressed by all the antagonists tested. I.p.n.-evoked monosynaptic responses of m.r.n. neurones were reversibly reduced by the broad spectrum antagonists, but were unaffected by APV. Cortically evoked mono- and polysynaptic excitatory responses were reversibly depressed by APV and the broad spectrum antagonist, pCB-PzDA. The action of APV corresponded with its ability to antagonize responses to NMDA. However, the cortically evoked responses appeared to be more sensitive to the actions of pCB-PzDA than to those of APV, although the former is a less effective antagonist of NMDA-induced excitation compared with APV. APV depressed excitation induced by cortical stimuli and L-glutamate and L-aspartate. However, there was no obvious correlation between the actions of the broad spectrum amino acid antagonists on synaptically evoked responses and those induced by L-glutamate or L-aspartate on the few neurones tested. These results are consistent with an amino acid being the transmitter in the interposito-rubral and cortico-rubral excitatory pathways which interacts with non-NMDA and both NMDA and non-NMDA receptors respectively. However, the identity of the transmitter acting at these receptors remains to be determined. Images Fig. 1 PMID:2879036

  17. Biochemical plasticity of synaptic transmission: a critical review of Dale's Principle.

    PubMed

    Sabelli, H C; Mosnaim, A D; Vazquez, A J; Giardina, W J; Borison, R L; Pedemonte, W A

    1976-08-01

    "Dale's Principle" states that each neuron releases one and only one synaptic transmitter. Mental disorders and behavioral drug effects are attributed to activation or blockade of one or more of these specific transmitters. A series of biochemical, electrophysiological, and behavioral studies suggests the alternative view that at each monoaminergic synapse the action of the transmitter is modulated by several metabolically related substances: amine analogs (2-phenylethylamine [PEA], p-tyramine, etc.), deaminated products (aldehydes, acids, and alcohols), and possibly also amino acid precursors. In support of this view, the authors present evidence for the presence, synthesis, metabolism, and biological activity (at the cellular level, using microelectrode techniques) of amino acid, amines, and deaminated compounds metabolically related to catecholamines and sorotonin. That neuroamino acids exert direct effects (not mediated via their amine metabolites) is illustrated by the rapid effects of microiontophoretic dopa upon cortical unit activity, and by the observation that neither the lethargic effect of 5-hydroxytryptophan (considered to support Jouvet's serotonergic theory of sleep) nor the behavioral stimulant effects of dopa (considered to support the catecholamine theory of affective behavior) are significantly prevented by L-aromatic amino acid decarboxylase inhibitors. The biological activity of the deaminated metabolites of catecholamines and serotonin is illustrated by the effects of their microiontophoretic administration upon cortical units. Further, probenecid (an inhibitor of acid transport across the blood-brain barrier) is shown to qualitatively alter the effects of intraventricularly administered PEA and of its metabolite phenylacetic acid upon visual evoked potentials. Rabbit brain is shown to synthesize a series of pharmacologically active noncatecholic phenylethylamines as by-products of catecholamine metabolism. Amine modulators such as PEA differ from typical transmitters by their ability to cross biological barriers; inhibition of decarboxylase in peripheral tissues only (using alpha-methyldopa hydrazine) markedly depletes brain PEA (but not catecholamines). Because of the homeostatic control of the rate of transmitter synthesis and disposition, physiological, pharmacological, and pathological changes may be expected to affect more the tissue levels of related modulators. This modulator theory of drug action is illustrated by the effect of several psychotropic drugs upon the brain levels of PEA and of norepinephrine. For instance, amphetamine initially decreases and then increases brain PEA levels, without altering brain norepinephrine levels. The authors propose an expanded "Dale's Principle": each neuron is specific in that it releases at all its endings the same pool of chemical messengers, composed of one transmitter and metabolically related modulators, the relative proportion of which is determined by the physiological state of the cell (biochemical plasticity)... PMID:9160

  18. 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

  19. Reelin and cyclin-dependent kinase 5-dependent signals cooperate in regulating neuronal migration and synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Beffert, Uwe; Weeber, Edwin J; Morfini, Gerardo; Ko, Jane; Brady, Scott T; Tsai, Li-Huei; Sweatt, J David; Herz, Joachim

    2004-02-25

    Neuronal migration and positioning in the developing brain require the coordinated interaction of multiple cellular signaling pathways. The extracellular signaling molecule Reelin and the cytoplasmic serine/threonine kinase Cdk5 (cyclin-dependent kinase 5) are both required for normal neuronal positioning, lamination of the neocortex, and foliation of the cerebellum. They also modulate synaptic transmission in the adult brain. It is not known, however, to what extent Cdk5 participates in Reelin signaling and whether both pathways interact on the genetic or biochemical level. We have used genetically altered mice to generate compound functional defects of Reelin and Cdk5 signaling. Differential neurohistochemical staging combined with the biochemical analysis of Reelin- and Cdk5-dependent signaling in primary embryonic neurons and electrophysiology in hippocampal slices reveals evidence for genetic and functional interaction between both pathways. Inhibition of Reelin or Cdk5 signaling had no discernible biochemical effect on each other. Taken together, these findings suggest that both pathways function together in a parallel, rather than a simple, linear manner to coordinate neuronal migration and neurotransmission in the developing and mature brain. PMID:14985430

  20. Contribution of ?2A-adrenoceptor subtype to effect of dexmedetomidine and xylazine on spinal synaptic transmission of mice.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Takeshi; Otsuguro, Ken-ichi; Yamaguchi, Soichiro; Ito, Shigeo

    2015-08-15

    Alpha-2A adrenergic receptor (AR) subtype plays an important role in the analgesic effect of ?2-AR agonists. Here, we examined the effects of ?2-AR agonists, dexmedetomidine and xylazine, on spinal synaptic transmission in newborn C57BL/6J and ?2A-AR mutant mice. Spinal reflex potentials, the monosynaptic reflex potential (MSR) and the slow ventral root potential (sVRP), were measured in isolated spinal cords. The compound action potential was measured in isolated lumbar nerve. Dexmedetomidine and xylazine suppressed both the MSR and sVRP in a concentration-dependent manner. In ?2A-AR mutant mice, sVRP suppression by dexmedetomidine was greatly weakened, while that by xylazine (30-100?M) showed only slight attenuation. A high concentration (300?M) of xylazine completely suppressed the sVRP, even in ?2A-AR mutant mice spinal cords, and also suppressed the compound action potential. MSR suppression by these ?2-AR agonists had no difference between wild-type and ?2A-AR mutant mice. These results suggest that sVRP suppression by dexmedetomidine and xylazine is mainly mediated by ?2A-AR. In addition, a high concentration of xylazine inhibits conduction of the action potential, which is not mediated by ?2A-AR. ?2-AR is not responsible for the dexmedetomidine- and xylazine-mediated inhibition of the MSR. PMID:26086861

  1. 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

  2. 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 7days 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 7days after CCI. Additionally, the surface expression of ?1, ß2/3, and ?2 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

  3. 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

  4. Brain-derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF)-induced Mitochondrial Motility Arrest and Presynaptic Docking Contribute to BDNF-enhanced Synaptic Transmission*?

    PubMed Central

    Su, Bo; Ji, Yun-Song; Sun, Xu-lu; Liu, Xiang-Hua; Chen, Zhe-Yu

    2014-01-01

    Appropriate mitochondrial transport and distribution are essential for neurons because of the high energy and Ca2+ buffering requirements at synapses. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays an essential role in regulating synaptic transmission and plasticity. However, whether and how BDNF can regulate mitochondrial transport and distribution are still unclear. Here, we find that in cultured hippocampal neurons, application of BDNF for 15 min decreased the percentage of moving mitochondria in axons, a process dependent on the activation of the TrkB receptor and its downstream PI3K and phospholipase-C? signaling pathways. Moreover, the BDNF-induced mitochondrial stopping requires the activation of transient receptor potential canonical 3 and 6 (TRPC3 and TRPC6) channels and elevated intracellular Ca2+ levels. The Ca2+ sensor Miro1 plays an important role in this process. Finally, the BDNF-induced mitochondrial stopping leads to the accumulation of more mitochondria at presynaptic sites. Mutant Miro1 lacking the ability to bind Ca2+ prevents BDNF-induced mitochondrial presynaptic accumulation and synaptic transmission, suggesting that Miro1-mediated mitochondrial motility is involved in BDNF-induced mitochondrial presynaptic docking and neurotransmission. Together, these data suggest that mitochondrial transport and distribution play essential roles in BDNF-mediated synaptic transmission. PMID:24302729

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. Introduction Synaptic transmission

    E-print Network

    Stoltz, Brian M.

    "Cys Loop" Superfamily of Ligand-Gated Ion Channels The ACh receptor also responds to nicotine, and so is called the "nicotinic" acetylcholine receptor - nAChR Acetylcholine (ACh) O N+ CH3 CH3 CH3 O Nicotine N the chemical level, the key players include integral membrane proteins that control signaling Ligand-Gated Ion

  13. Prenatal Ethanol Exposure Alters Synaptic Plasticity in the Dorsolateral Striatum of Rat Offspring via Changing the Reactivity of Dopamine Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Rong; Wang, Shenjun; Zhu, Xuejiang

    2012-01-01

    Prenatal exposure to high-level ethanol (EtOH) has been reported to produce hyperlocomotion in offspring. Previous studies have demonstrated synaptic plasticity in cortical afferent to the dorsolateral (DL) striatum is involved in the pathogensis of hyperlocomotion. Here, prenatal EtOH-exposed rat offspring were used to investigate whether maternal EtOH exposure affected synaptic plasticity in the DL striatum. We found high-frequency stimulation (HFS) induced a weaker long-term potentiation (LTP) in EtOH rats than that in control rats at postnatal day (PD) 15. The same protocol of HFS induced long-term depression (LTD) in control group but still LTP in EtOH group at PD 30 or PD 40. Furthermore, enhancement of basal synaptic transmission accompanied by the decrease of pair-pulse facilitation (PPF) was observed in PD 30 EtOH offspring. The perfusion with D1-type receptors (D1R) antagonist SCH23390 recovered synaptic transmission and blocked the induction of abnormal LTP in PD 30 EtOH offspring. The perfusion with D2-type receptors (D2R) agonist quinpirole reversed EtOH-induced LTP into D1R- and metabotropic glutamate receptor-dependent LTD. The data provide the functional evidence that prenatal ethanol exposure led to the persistent abnormal synaptic plasticity in the DL striatum via disturbing the balance between D1R and D2R. PMID:22916128

  14. 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

  15. 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

  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. Modulation of glycinergic synaptic transmission in the trigeminal and hypoglossal motor nuclei by the nitric oxide-cyclicGMP signaling pathway.

    PubMed

    Pose, I; Silveira, V; Damián, A; Higgie, R; Morales, F R

    2014-05-16

    In a previous work we found that nitric oxide (NO) and cyclicGMP (cGMP) inhibit glutamatergic synaptic transmission in trigeminal motoneurons (MnV). Here we study the actions of the NO/cGMP signaling pathway on glycinergic synaptic transmission in trigeminal and hypoglossal motoneurons (MnXII) in brain stem slices of neonatal rats. Glycinergic inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) were recorded in MnV by stimulation of the supratrigeminal nucleus (SuV) and in MnXII by stimulation of the nucleus of Roller. The NO donor DETA/NONOate (DETA/NO) reduced the amplitude of the IPSC to 58.1±4.2% of control values in MnV. In the presence of YC-1, a modulator of guanylate cyclase that acts as a NO sensitizer, lower and otherwise ineffective concentrations of DETA/NO induced a reduction of the IPSC to 47.2±15.6%. NO effects were mimicked by 8 bromo cyclicGMP (8BrcGMP). They were accompanied by an increase in the paired pulse facilitation (PPF) and in the failure rate of evoked IPSCs. 8BrcGMP did not modify the glycinergic currents elicited by exogenous glycine. In MnXII the IPSCs were also reduced by NO donors and 8BrcGMP to 52.9±6.3% and 45.9±4% of control values, respectively. In these neurons, but not in MnV, we also observed excitatory postsynaptic actions of NO donors. We propose that the differences between the two motor pools may be due to a differential development of the nitrergic system in the two nuclei. Our data show that NO, through its second messenger cGMP, reduces inhibitory glycinergic synaptic transmission in both MnV and MnXII. For MnV, evidence in favor of presynaptic inhibition of glycine release is presented. Given our previous data together with the current results, we propose that the NO/cGMP signaling pathway participates pre- and postsynaptically in the combined regulation of MnV and MnXII activities in motor acts in which they participate. PMID:24626159

  18. 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

  19. MONOSYNAPTIC REFLEX RESPONSE OF SPINAL MOTONEURONS TO GRADED AFFERENT STIMULATION

    PubMed Central

    Hunt, Carlton C.

    1955-01-01

    Monosynaptic reflex response of spinal motoneurons to graded afferent volleys has been studied in natural populations and in a representative sample of individual motoneurons. By analysis of input-response relations certain of the requirements for initiation of reflex discharge have been defined. Initation of motoneuron discharge by monosynaptic afferent excitatory volleys results from the development of transmitter potentiality among members of a pool. Transmitter potentiality is considered to have the following characteristics: 1. It is a function of the number of active excitatory synaptic knobs, the degree to which such knobs are aggregated on the motoneuron soma, and the intensity of action per knob. 2. It has an appreciable spatial decrement and rapid temporal decay. 3. While transmitter potentiality has considerable dependence on number of active excitatory knobs, proximity of such knobs is an important variable. Total activation of a discrete zone does not appear to be necessary for initiation of discharge. In addition to initiation of discharge, volleys in monosynaptic afferent excitatory fibers facilitate response otherwise engendered. Such facilitation depends upon the production of an increment in transmitter potentiality. Facilitator potentiality has the following characteristics: 1. It depends principally on number of active excitatory synaptic knobs and intensity of action per knob. 2. Facilitatory action may result from synchronous activity in knobs interspersed among aggregations of knobs otherwise activated, thus fulfilling spatial requirements for transmitter potentiality. Alternatively a residual facilitation may result from a generalized action. 3. Residual facilitation has a slow temporal decay in comparison with transmitter potentiality. PMID:13242766

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. Differential modulation by the GABAB receptor allosteric potentiator 2,6-di-tert-butyl-4-(3-hydroxy-2,2-dimethylpropyl)-phenol (CGP7930) of synaptic transmission in the rat hippocampal CA1 area.

    PubMed

    Chen, Ying; Menendez-Roche, Nicole; Sher, Emanuele

    2006-06-01

    The recently discovered GABAB receptor-positive allosteric modulators enhanced the potency and efficacy of GABAB receptor agonists in in vitro experiments. These GABAB modulators also attenuated reward and anxiety in behavioral experiments without causing the untoward side effects associated with GABAB receptor activation by agonist administration and hence exhibited potential therapeutic utility. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms enabling the GABAB allosteric modulators to dissociate from the GABAB agonistic side effects remain elusive. To address this question, we have examined the effects of a typical GABAB modulator, 2,6-di-tert-butyl-4-(3-hydroxy-2,2-dimethylpropyl)-phenol (CGP7930), on GABAB receptor-mediated modulations of both the excitatory and the delayed inhibitory components of hippocampal CA1 synaptic transmission. Using baclofen as an agonist and a multielectrode recording system, we recorded GABAB receptor-mediated modulations of both the field excitatory postsynaptic potentials and the population spikes simultaneously, as well as the paired-pulse inhibition of the population spike. We found that CGP7930 selectively enhanced the baclofen-induced modulation of synaptic inhibition without having any significant effects on the synaptic excitation. Our experiments have therefore revealed a pathway-selective differential modulation of synaptic transmission by CGP7930. This finding provides a synaptic mechanism to support the hypothesis that GABAB potentiators may be a better therapeutic alternative than GABAB agonists for central nervous system disorders. PMID:16507713

  6. The Effects of NR2 Subunit-Dependent NMDA Receptor Kinetics on Synaptic Transmission and CaMKII Activation

    PubMed Central

    Santucci, David M.; Raghavachari, Sridhar

    2008-01-01

    N-Methyl-d-aspartic acid (NMDA) receptors are widely expressed in the brain and are critical for many forms of synaptic plasticity. Subtypes of the NMDA receptor NR2 subunit are differentially expressed during development; in the forebrain, the NR2B receptor is dominant early in development, and later both NR2A and NR2B are expressed. In heterologous expression systems, NR2A-containing receptors open more reliably and show much faster opening and closing kinetics than do NR2B-containing receptors. However, conflicting data, showing similar open probabilities, exist for receptors expressed in neurons. Similarly, studies of synaptic plasticity have produced divergent results, with some showing that only NR2A-containing receptors can drive long-term potentiation and others showing that either subtype is capable of driving potentiation. In order to address these conflicting results as well as open questions about the number and location of functional receptors in the synapse, we constructed a Monte Carlo model of glutamate release, diffusion, and binding to NMDA receptors and of receptor opening and closing as well as a model of the activation of calcium-calmodulin kinase II, an enzyme critical for induction of synaptic plasticity, by NMDA receptor-mediated calcium influx. Our results suggest that the conflicting data concerning receptor open probabilities can be resolved, with NR2A- and NR2B-containing receptors having very different opening probabilities. They also support the conclusion that receptors containing either subtype can drive long-term potentiation. We also are able to estimate the number of functional receptors at a synapse from experimental data. Finally, in our models, the opening of NR2B-containing receptors is highly dependent on the location of the receptor relative to the site of glutamate release whereas the opening of NR2A-containing receptors is not. These results help to clarify the previous findings and suggest future experiments to address open questions concerning NMDA receptor function. PMID:18974824

  7. Haploinsufficiency in peptidylglycine ?-amidating monooxygenase leads to altered synaptic transmission in the amygdala and impaired emotional responses

    PubMed Central

    Gaier, ED; Rodriguiz, RM; Ma, XM; Sivaramakrishnan, S; Bousquet-Moore, D; Wetsel, WC; Eipper, BA

    2010-01-01

    The mammalian amygdala expresses various neuropeptides whose signaling has been implicated in emotionality. Many neuropeptides require amidation for full activation by peptidylglycine ?-amidating monooxygenase (PAM), a transmembrane vesicular cuproenzyme and regulator of the secretory pathway. Mice heterozygous for the Pam gene (PAM+/?) exhibit physiological and behavioral abnormalities related to specific peptidergic pathways. In the present study, we evaluated emotionality and examined molecular and cellular responses that characterize neurophysiological differences in the PAM+/? amygdala. PAM+/? mice presented with anxiety-like behaviors in the zero maze that were alleviated by diazepam. PAM+/? animals were deficient in short- and long-term contextual and cued fear conditioning and required higher shock intensities to establish fear-potentiated startle than their wildtype littermates. Immunohistochemical analysis of the amygdala revealed PAM expression in pyramidal neurons and local interneurons that synthesize ?-aminobutyric acid (GABA). We performed whole-cell recordings of pyramidal neurons in the PAM+/? amygdala to elucidate neurophysiological correlates of the fear behavioral phenotypes. Consistent with these observations, thalamic afferent synapses in the PAM+/? lateral nucleus were deficient in long-term potentiation. This deficit was apparent in the absence and presence of the GABAA receptor antagonist picrotoxin and was abolished when both GABAA and GABAB receptors were blocked. Both evoked and spontaneous excitatory signals were enhanced in the PAM+/? lateral nucleus. Phasic GABAergic signaling was also augmented in the PAM+/? amygdala, and this difference was comprised of activity-independent and activity-dependent components. These physiological findings represent perturbations in the PAM+/? amygdala that may underlie the aberrant emotional responses in the intact animal. PMID:20943906

  8. 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 ?-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 ?M) 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 ?M, 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?-[?-thio]diphosphate trilithium salt (GDP-?-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

  9. 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

  10. Synaptic transmission between end bulbs of Held and bushy cells in the cochlear nucleus of mice with a mutation in Otoferlin.

    PubMed

    Wright, Samantha; Hwang, Youngdeok; Oertel, Donata

    2014-12-15

    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

  11. 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

  12. Commissural and Lemniscal Synaptic Input to the Gerbil Inferior DAVID R. MOORE,1,3

    E-print Network

    Commissural and Lemniscal Synaptic Input to the Gerbil Inferior Colliculus DAVID R. MOORE,1) and con- missural and lemniscal synaptic input to the gerbil inferior collicu- tralateral dorsal (DNLL nucleusbution made to gerbil ICC neuron physiology by two major afferent (MGN), and the auditory cortex (Adams

  13. Modification of synaptic transmission and sodium channel inactivation by the insect-selective scorpion toxin LqhalphaIT.

    PubMed

    Lee, D; Gurevitz, M; Adams, M E

    2000-03-01

    The peptide LqhalphaIT is an alpha-scorpion toxin that shows significant selectivity for insect sodium channels over mammalian channels. We examined the symptoms of LqhalphaIT-induced paralysis and its neurophysiological correlates in the house fly (Musca domestica). Injection of LqhalphaIT into fly larvae produced hyperactivity characterized by continuous, irregular muscle twitching throughout the body. These symptoms were correlated with elevated excitability in motor units caused by two physiological effects of the toxin: 1) increased transmitter release and 2) repetitive action potentials in motor nerves. Increased transmitter release was evident as augmentation of neurally evoked synaptic current, and this was correlated with an increased duration of action potential-associated current (APAC) in loose patch recordings from nerve terminals. Repetitive APACs were observed to invade nerve endings. The toxin produced marked inhibition of sodium current inactivation in fly central neurons, which can account for increased duration of the APAC and elevated neurotransmitter release at the neuromuscular junction. Steady-state inactivation was shifted significantly to more positive potentials, whereas voltage-dependent activation of the channels was not affected. The shift in steady-state inactivation provides a mechanism for inducing repetitive activity in motoneurons. The effects of LqhalphaIT on sodium channel inactivation in motor nerve endings can account both for increased transmitter release and repetitive activity leading to hyperactivity in affected insects. PMID:10712448

  14. 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

  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. Activation of Presynaptic GABAB(1a,2) Receptors Inhibits Synaptic Transmission at Mammalian Inhibitory Cholinergic Olivocochlear–Hair Cell Synapses

    PubMed Central

    Wedemeyer, Carolina; Zorrilla de San Martín, Javier; Ballestero, Jimena; Gómez-Casati, María Eugenia; Torbidoni, Ana Vanesa; Fuchs, Paul A.; Bettler, Bernhard; Elgoyhen, Ana Belén

    2013-01-01

    The synapse between olivocochlear (OC) neurons and cochlear mechanosensory hair cells is cholinergic, fast, and inhibitory. The inhibitory sign of this cholinergic synapse is accounted for by the activation of Ca2+-permeable postsynaptic ?9?10 nicotinic receptors coupled to the opening of hyperpolarizing Ca2+-activated small-conductance type 2 (SK2)K+ channels. Acetylcholine (ACh) release at this synapse is supported by both P/Q- and N-type voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs). Although the OC synapse is cholinergic, an abundant OC GABA innervation is present along the mammalian cochlea. The role of this neurotransmitter at the OC efferent innervation, however, is for the most part unknown. We show that GABA fails to evoke fast postsynaptic inhibitory currents in apical developing inner and outer hair cells. However, electrical stimulation of OC efferent fibers activates presynaptic GABAB(1a,2) receptors [GABAB(1a,2)Rs] that downregulate the amount of ACh released at the OC–hair cell synapse, by inhibiting P/Q-type VGCCs. We confirmed the expression of GABABRs at OC terminals contacting the hair cells by coimmunostaining for GFP and synaptophysin in transgenic mice expressing GABAB1–GFP fusion proteins. Moreover, coimmunostaining with antibodies against the GABA synthetic enzyme glutamic acid decarboxylase and synaptophysin support the idea that GABA is directly synthesized at OC terminals contacting the hair cells during development. Thus, we demonstrate for the first time a physiological role for GABA in cochlear synaptic function. In addition, our data suggest that the GABAB1a isoform selectively inhibits release at efferent cholinergic synapses. PMID:24068816

  17. Synaptic efficacy cluster formation across the dendrite via STDP.

    PubMed

    Iannella, Nicolangelo; Tanaka, Shigeru

    2006-07-31

    The role of spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) in shaping the strength of a synapse located on the dendritic tree has gained recent interest. Previous theoretical studies using STDP have mostly used simplified integrate-and-fire models to investigate the evolution of synaptic efficacy with time. Such studies usually show that the final weight distribution is unimodal or bimodal resulting from a multiplicative or additive STDP rule, respectively. However, very little is known about how STDP shapes the spatial organization of synaptic efficacies. Here, for the first time, we demonstrate that spatial clustering of synaptic efficacies can occur on the dendrite via STDP, where changes in synaptic efficacy are driven by timing differences between synaptic inputs and the generation of local dendritic spikes. Specifically, when the model neuron is stimulated by two independent groups of correlated afferent inputs, the synaptic efficacies from each group, are not only spatially clustered on the dendrite but also spatially complementary to each other. PMID:16762502

  18. FMRFamide-related peptide expression in the vestibular-afferent neurons.

    PubMed

    Mercado, Francisco; López, Iván; Ortega, Aida; Almanza, Angélica; Soto, Enrique; Vega, Rosario

    2012-03-28

    Vestibular-afferent neurons innervate hair cells from the sensory epithelia of vestibular end-organs and their action-potential discharge dynamics are driven by linear and angular accelerations of the head. The electrical activity of the vestibular-afferent neurons depends on their intrinsic properties and on the synaptic input from hair cells and from the terminals of the efferent system. Here we report that vestibular-afferent neurons of the rat are immunoreactive to RFamide-related peptides, and that the stronger signal comes from calyx-shaped neuron dendrites, with no signal detected in hair cells or supporting cells. The whole-cell voltage clamp recording of isolated afferent neurons showed that they express robust acid-sensing ionic currents (ASICs). Extracellular multiunit recordings of the vestibular nerve in a preparation in vitro of the rat inner ear showed that the perfusion of FMRFamide (a snail ortholog of this family of neuropeptides) exerts an excitatory effect on the afferent-neurons spike-discharge rate. Because the FMRFamide cannot activate the ASIC but reduces its desensitization generating a more robust current, its effect indicates that the ASIC are tonically active in the vestibular-afferent neurons and modulated by RFamide-like peptides. PMID:22342307

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. ?-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

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. Specific Trans-Synaptic Interaction with Inhibitory Interneuronal Neurexin Underlies Differential Ability of Neuroligins to Induce Functional Inhibitory Synapses

    E-print Network

    Futai, Kensuke

    Synaptic transmission depends on the matching and alignment of presynaptically released transmitters and postsynaptic neurotransmitter receptors. Neuroligin (NL) and Neurexin (Nrxn) proteins are trans-synaptic adhesion ...

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  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. Focus Review Protein homeostasis and synaptic plasticity

    E-print Network

    Schuman, Erin M.

    , Germany It is clear that de novo protein synthesis has an important function in synaptic transmission controlled and that dendritic protein synthesis is required for different forms of long-term synaptic, protein synthesis and protein degradation. Most neurons possess three distinct compartments--the cell body

  11. Connections between thoraco-coxal proprioceptive afferents and motor neurons in the locust.

    PubMed

    Wildman, M

    2000-02-01

    The position of the coxal segment of the locust hind leg relative to the thorax is monitored by a variety of proprioceptors, including three chordotonal organs and a myochordotonal organ. The sensory neurons of two of these proprioceptors, the posterior joint chordotonal organ (pjCO) and the myochordotonal organ (MCO), have axons in the purely sensory metathoracic nerve 2C (N2C). The connections made by these afferents with metathoracic motor neurons innervating thoraco-coxal and wing muscles were investigated by electrical stimulation of N2C and by matching postsynaptic potentials in motor neurons with afferent spikes in N2C. Stretch applied to the anterior rotator muscle of the coxa (M121), with which the MCO is associated, evoked sensory spikes in N2C. Some of the MCO afferent neurons make direct excitatory chemical synaptic connections with motor neurons innervating the thoraco-coxal muscles M121, M126 and M125. Parallel polysynaptic pathways via unidentified interneurons also exist between MCO afferents and these motor neurons. Connections with the common inhibitor 1 neuron and motor neurons innervating the thoraco-coxal muscles M123/4 and wing muscles M113 and M127 are polysynaptic. Afferents of the pjCO also make polysynaptic connections with motor neurons innervating thoraco-coxal and wing muscles, but no evidence for monosynaptic pathways was found. PMID:10637173

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Specificity of afferent synapses onto plane-polarized hair cells in the posterior lateral line of the zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Nagiel, Aaron; Andor-Ardó, Daniel

    2009-01-01

    The proper wiring of the vertebrate brain represents an extraordinary developmental challenge, requiring billions of neurons to select their appropriate synaptic targets. In view of this complexity, simple vertebrate systems provide necessary models for understanding how synaptic specificity arises. The posterior lateral-line organ of larval zebrafish consists of polarized hair cells organized in discrete clusters known as neuromasts. Here we show that each afferent neuron of the posterior lateral line establishes specific contacts with hair cells of the same hair-bundle polarity. We quantify this specificity by modeling the neuron as a biased selector of hair-cell polarity and find evidence for bias from as early as 2.5 days post-fertilization. More than half of the neurons form contacts on multiple neuromasts, but the innervated organs are spatially consecutive and the polarity preference is consistent. Using a novel reagent for correlative electron microscopy, HRP-mCherry, we show that these contacts are indeed afferent synapses bearing vesicle-loaded synaptic ribbons. Moreover, afferent neurons reassume their biased innervation pattern after hair-cell ablation and regeneration. By documenting specificity in the pattern of neuronal connectivity during development and in the context of organ regeneration, these results establish the posterior lateral-line organ as a vertebrate system for the in vivo study of synaptic target selection. PMID:18716202

  17. 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…

  18. [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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. CaMKII at a central synapse : ?-calcium/calmodium protien kinase II and synaptic plasticity at CA3 Schaffer collateral -- CA1 synapses in the mammalian hippocampus

    E-print Network

    Hinds, Heather L., 1969-

    2001-01-01

    Long term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic transmission at the CA3-CA1 hippocampal synapse is a model synaptic plasticity mechanism that may underlie hippocampal dependent learning and memory. Inhibition of post-synaptic ...

  2. 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

  3. Differential content of vesicular glutamate transporters in subsets of vagal afferents projecting to the nucleus tractus solitarii in the rat.

    PubMed

    Hermes, Sam M; Colbert, James F; Aicher, Sue A

    2014-02-15

    The vagus nerve contains primary visceral afferents that convey sensory information from cardiovascular, pulmonary, and gastrointestinal tissues to the nucleus tractus solitarii (NTS). The heterogeneity of vagal afferents and their central terminals within the NTS is a common obstacle for evaluating functional groups of afferents. To determine whether different anterograde tracers can be used to identify distinct subpopulations of vagal afferents within NTS, we injected cholera toxin B subunit (CTb) and isolectin B4 (IB4) into the vagus nerve. Confocal analyses of medial NTS following injections of both CTb and IB4 into the same vagus nerve resulted in labeling of two exclusive populations of fibers. The ultrastructural patterns were also distinct. CTb was found in both myelinated and unmyelinated vagal axons and terminals in medial NTS, whereas IB4 was found only in unmyelinated afferents. Both tracers were observed in terminals with asymmetric synapses, suggesting excitatory transmission. Because glutamate is thought to be the neurotransmitter at this first primary afferent synapse in NTS, we determined whether vesicular glutamate transporters (VGLUTs) were differentially distributed among the two distinct populations of vagal afferents. Anterograde tracing from the vagus with CTb or IB4 was combined with immunohistochemistry for VGLUT1 or VGLUT2 in medial NTS and evaluated with confocal microscopy. CTb-labeled afferents contained primarily VGLUT2 (83%), whereas IB4-labeled afferents had low levels of vesicular transporters, VGLUT1 (5%) or VGLUT2 (21%). These findings suggest the possibility that glutamate release from unmyelinated vagal afferents may be regulated by a distinct, non-VGLUT, mechanism. PMID:23897509

  4. 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

  5. Impact of synaptic depression on network activity and implications for neural coding 

    E-print Network

    York, Lawrence Christopher

    2011-11-24

    Short-term synaptic depression is the phenomena where repeated stimulation leads to a decreased transmission efficacy. In this thesis, the impact of synaptic depression on the responses and dynamics of network models of ...

  6. Onset Coding Is Degraded in Auditory Nerve Fibers from Mutant Mice Lacking Synaptic Ribbons

    E-print Network

    Buran, Bradley N.

    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 ...

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. Vestibular afferent responses to microrotational stimuli

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, Steven F.; Lewis, Edwin R.

    1991-01-01

    Intracellular microelectrode recording/labeling techniques were used to investigate vestibular afferent responses in the bullfrog, to very small amplitude (less than 5 deg p-p) sinusoidal rotations in the vertical plane over the frequency range of 0.063-4 Hz. Robust responses to peak accelerations as low as 0.031 deg/sec per sec were obtained from units subsequently traced to either the central portion of the anterior canal crista or the striolar region of the utricle. All of these microrotationally sensitive afferent neurons had irregular resting discharge rates, and the majority had transfer ratios (relative to rotational velocity) of 1-40 spikes/sec per deg/sec. Individual utricular afferent velocity transfer ratios were nearly constant over the frequency range of 0.125-4 Hz. Canal units displayed decreasing response transfer ratios as stimulus frequencies increased. These findings indicate that, although utricular striolar and central crista afferent velocity transfer ratios to microrotations were very similar, utricular striolar afferent neurons were more faithful sensors of very small amplitude rotational velocity in the vertical plane.

  14. 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

  15. Capsaicin-responsive corneal afferents do not contain TRPV1 at their central terminals in trigeminal nucleus caudalis in rats

    PubMed Central

    Hegarty, Deborah M.; Hermes, Sam M.; Largent-Milnes, Tally M.; Aicher, Sue A.

    2014-01-01

    We examined the substrates for ocular nociception in adult male Sprague-Dawley rats. Capsaicin application to the ocular surface in awake rats evoked nocifensive responses and suppressed spontaneous grooming responses. Thus, peripheral capsaicin was able to activate the central pathways encoding ocular nociception. Our capsaicin stimulus evoked c-Fos expression in a select population of neurons within rostral trigeminal nucleus caudalis in anesthetized rats. These activated neurons also received direct contacts from corneal afferent fibers traced with cholera toxin B from the corneal surface. However, the central terminals of the corneal afferents that contacted capsaicin-activated trigeminal neurons did not contain TRPV1. To determine if TRPV1 expression had been altered by capsaicin stimulation, we examined TRPV1 content of corneal afferents in animals that did not receive capsaicin stimulation. These studies confirmed that while TRPV1 was present in 30% of CTb-labeled corneal afferent neurons within the trigeminal ganglion, TRPV1 was only detected in 2% of the central terminals of these corneal afferents within the trigeminal nucleus caudalis. Other TRP channels were also present in low proportions of central corneal afferent terminals in unstimulated animals (TRPM8, 2%; TRPA1, 10%). These findings indicate that a pathway from the cornea to rostral trigeminal nucleus caudalis is involved in corneal nociceptive transmission, but that central TRP channel expression is unrelated to the type of stimulus transduced by the peripheral nociceptive endings. PMID:24996127

  16. Two populations of neurokinin 1 receptor-expressing projection neurons in lamina I of the rat spinal cord that differ in AMPA receptor subunit composition and density of excitatory synaptic input

    PubMed Central

    Polgár, E.; Al Ghamdi, K.S.; Todd, A.J.

    2010-01-01

    Lamina I of the spinal cord contains many projection neurons that express the neurokinin 1 receptor (NK1r). It has been reported that these cells can undergo long-term potentiation (LTP), which may result from insertion of AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPArs) containing GluA1 or GluA4 subunits. We therefore investigated synaptic AMPAr expression on these cells with immunocytochemistry following antigen-retrieval. We also examined their density of glutamatergic input (by analysing AMPAr synaptic puncta and contacts from glutamatergic boutons), and phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases (pERKs) following noxious stimulation. Our results indicate that there are two populations of NK1r-expressing projection neurons: large GluA4+/GluA1? cells with a high density of glutamatergic input and small GluA1+/GluA4? cells with a much lower input density. Results from pERK experiments suggested that the two groups may not differ in the types of noxious stimulus that activate them. Glutamatergic synapses on distal dendrites of the large cells were significantly longer than those on proximal dendrites, which presumably compensates for the greater attenuation of distally-generated excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs). Both types of cell received contacts from peptidergic primary afferents, however, on the large cells these appeared to constitute over half of the glutamatergic synapses, and were often associated with elongated AMPAr puncta. This suggests that these afferents, which probably contain substance P, provide a powerful, secure synaptic input to large NK1r-expressing projection neurons. These results demonstrate the importance of GluA4-containing AMPArs in nociceptive transmission and raise the possibility that different forms of LTP in lamina I projection neurons may be related to differential expression of GluA1/GluA4. PMID:20303396

  17. Abnormal cortical synaptic transmission in CaV2.1 knockin mice with the S218L missense mutation which causes a severe familial hemiplegic migraine syndrome in humans

    PubMed Central

    Vecchia, Dania; Tottene, Angelita; van den Maagdenberg, Arn M.J.M.; Pietrobon, Daniela

    2015-01-01

    Familial hemiplegic migraine type 1 (FHM1) is caused by gain-of-function mutations in CaV2.1 (P/Q-type) Ca2+ channels. Knockin (KI) mice carrying the FHM1 R192Q missense mutation show enhanced cortical excitatory synaptic transmission at pyramidal cell synapses but unaltered cortical inhibitory neurotransmission at fast-spiking interneuron synapses. Enhanced cortical glutamate release was shown to cause the facilitation of cortical spreading depression (CSD) in R192Q KI mice. It, however, remains unknown how other FHM1 mutations affect cortical synaptic transmission. Here, we studied neurotransmission in cortical neurons in microculture from KI mice carrying the S218L mutation, which causes a severe FHM syndrome in humans and an allele-dosage dependent facilitation of experimental CSD in KI mice, which is larger than that caused by the R192Q mutation. We show gain-of-function of excitatory neurotransmission, due to increased action-potential evoked Ca2+ influx and increased probability of glutamate release at pyramidal cell synapses, but unaltered inhibitory neurotransmission at multipolar interneuron synapses in S218L KI mice. In contrast with the larger gain-of-function of neuronal CaV2.1 current in homozygous than heterozygous S218L KI mice, the gain-of-function of evoked glutamate release, the paired-pulse ratio and the Ca2+ dependence of the excitatory postsynaptic current were similar in homozygous and heterozygous S218L KI mice, suggesting compensatory changes in the homozygous mice. Furthermore, we reveal a unique feature of S218L KI cortical synapses which is the presence of a fraction of mutant CaV2.1 channels being open at resting potential. Our data suggest that, while the gain-of-function of evoked glutamate release may explain the facilitation of CSD in heterozygous S218L KI mice, the further facilitation of CSD in homozygous S218L KI mice is due to other CaV2.1-dependent mechanisms, that likely include Ca2+ influx at voltages sub-threshold for action potential generation. PMID:25741235

  18. High-fidelity transmission of sensory information by single cerebellar mossy fibre boutons.

    PubMed

    Rancz, Ede A; Ishikawa, Taro; Duguid, Ian; Chadderton, Paul; Mahon, Séverine; Häusser, Michael

    2007-12-20

    Understanding the transmission of sensory information at individual synaptic connections requires knowledge of the properties of presynaptic terminals and their patterns of firing evoked by sensory stimuli. Such information has been difficult to obtain because of the small size and inaccessibility of nerve terminals in the central nervous system. Here we show, by making direct patch-clamp recordings in vivo from cerebellar mossy fibre boutons-the primary source of synaptic input to the cerebellar cortex-that sensory stimulation can produce bursts of spikes in single boutons at very high instantaneous firing frequencies (more than 700 Hz). We show that the mossy fibre-granule cell synapse exhibits high-fidelity transmission at these frequencies, indicating that the rapid burst of excitatory postsynaptic currents underlying the sensory-evoked response of granule cells can be driven by such a presynaptic spike burst. We also demonstrate that a single mossy fibre can trigger action potential bursts in granule cells in vitro when driven with in vivo firing patterns. These findings suggest that the relay from mossy fibre to granule cell can act in a 'detonator' fashion, such that a single presynaptic afferent may be sufficient to transmit the sensory message. This endows the cerebellar mossy fibre system with remarkable sensitivity and high fidelity in the transmission of sensory information. PMID:18097412

  19. 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.

  20. Neurotransmitters and synaptic components in the Merkel cell-neurite complex, a gentle touch receptor

    PubMed Central

    Maksimovic, Srdjan; Baba, Yoshichika; Lumpkin, Ellen A.

    2013-01-01

    Merkel cells are an enigmatic group of rare cells found in the skin of vertebrates. Most make contacts with somatosensory afferents to form Merkel cell-neurite complexes, which are gentle-touch receptors that initiate slowly adapting type I responses. The function of Merkel cells within the complex remains debated despite decades of research. Numerous anatomical studies demonstrate that Merkel cells form synaptic-like contacts with sensory afferent terminals. Moreover, recent molecular analysis reveals that Merkel cells express dozens of presynaptic molecules that are essential for synaptic vesicle release in neurons. Merkel cells also produce a host of neuro-active substances that can act as fast excitatory neurotransmitters or neuromodulators. Here, we review the major neurotransmitters found in Merkel cells and discuss these findings in relation to the potential function of Merkel cells in touch reception. PMID:23530998

  1. The Corticohippocampal Circuit, Synaptic Plasticity, and Memory.

    PubMed

    Basu, Jayeeta; Siegelbaum, Steven A

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity serves as a cellular substrate for information storage in the central nervous system. The entorhinal cortex (EC) and hippocampus are interconnected brain areas supporting basic cognitive functions important for the formation and retrieval of declarative memories. Here, we discuss how information flow in the EC-hippocampal loop is organized through circuit design. We highlight recently identified corticohippocampal and intrahippocampal connections and how these long-range and local microcircuits contribute to learning. This review also describes various forms of activity-dependent mechanisms that change the strength of corticohippocampal synaptic transmission. A key point to emerge from these studies is that patterned activity and interaction of coincident inputs gives rise to associational plasticity and long-term regulation of information flow. Finally, we offer insights about how learning-related synaptic plasticity within the corticohippocampal circuit during sensory experiences may enable adaptive behaviors for encoding spatial, episodic, social, and contextual memories. PMID:26525152

  2. Fusimotor reflexes to antagonistic muscles simultaneously assessed by multi-afferent recordings from muscle spindle afferents.

    PubMed

    Johansson, H; Sjölander, P; Sojka, P; Wadell, I

    1987-12-01

    Several single agonist/antagonist primary muscle spindle afferents were simultaneously recorded in chloralose anaesthetized cats. It was shown that their dynamic and static sensitivity to sinusoidal muscle stretches could be increased or decreased via the fusimotor system by extension and flexion of the contralateral hind limb as well as by stretch of ipsilateral muscles and stimulation of ipsilateral skin nerves. The results seem to support the hypothesis that the primary muscle spindle afferents convey complex multisensory messages to the central nervous system (CNS). PMID:3427462

  3. Afferent innervation patterns of the saccule in pigeons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zakir, M.; Huss, D.; Dickman, J. D.

    2003-01-01

    The innervation patterns of vestibular saccular afferents were quantitatively investigated in pigeons using biotinylated dextran amine as a neural tracer and three-dimensional computer reconstruction. Type I hair cells were found throughout a large portion of the macula, with the highest density observed in the striola. Type II hair cells were located throughout the macula, with the highest density in the extrastriola. Three classes of afferent innervation patterns were observed, including calyx, dimorph, and bouton units, with 137 afferents being anatomically reconstructed and used for quantitative comparisons. Calyx afferents were located primarily in the striola, innervated a number of type I hair cells, and had small innervation areas. Most calyx afferent terminal fields were oriented parallel to the anterior-posterior axis and the morphological polarization reversal line. Dimorph afferents were located throughout the macula, contained fewer type I hair cells in a calyceal terminal than calyx afferents and had medium sized innervation areas. Bouton afferents were restricted to the extrastriola, with multi-branching fibers and large innervation areas. Most of the dimorph and bouton afferents had innervation fields that were oriented dorso-ventrally but were parallel to the neighboring reversal line. The organizational morphology of the saccule was found to be distinctly different from that of the avian utricle or lagena otolith organs and appears to represent a receptor organ undergoing evolutionary adaptation toward sensing linear motion in terrestrial and aerial species.

  4. Upward synaptic scaling is dependent on neurotransmission rather than spiking

    PubMed Central

    Fong, Ming-fai; Newman, Jonathan P.; Potter, Steve M.; Wenner, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Homeostatic plasticity encompasses a set of mechanisms that are thought to stabilize firing rates in neural circuits. The most widely studied form of homeostatic plasticity is upward synaptic scaling (upscaling), characterized by a multiplicative increase in the strength of excitatory synaptic inputs to a neuron as a compensatory response to chronic reductions in firing rate. While reduced spiking is thought to trigger upscaling, an alternative possibility is that reduced glutamatergic transmission generates this plasticity directly. However, spiking and neurotransmission are tightly coupled, so it has been difficult to determine their independent roles in the scaling process. Here we combined chronic multielectrode recording, closed-loop optogenetic stimulation, and pharmacology to show that reduced glutamatergic transmission directly triggers cell-wide synaptic upscaling. This work highlights the importance of synaptic activity in initiating signalling cascades that mediate upscaling. Moreover, our findings challenge the prevailing view that upscaling functions to homeostatically stabilize firing rates. PMID:25751516

  5. Dynamic response of human muscle spindle afferents to stretch.

    PubMed

    Edin, B B; Vallbo, A B

    1990-06-01

    1. One hundred and twenty-four muscle afferents from the finger extensor muscles were recorded from the radial nerve in human subjects. 2. The afferents were provisionally classified as muscle spindle primary (78/124) and secondary afferents (25/124), and Golgi tendon organ afferents (21/124), on the basis of their response to 1) maximal twitch contractions, 2) 20- and 50-Hz sinusoids superimposed on ramp-and-hold stretches, 3) stretch sensitization, and 4) isometric contractions and sudden relaxations. 3. Ramp-and-hold stretches at two velocities, 10 and 50 degrees/s, were applied to the appropriate metacarpophalangeal (MCP) joint while the parent muscle remained relaxed. For each unit three discrete parameters were assessed: the presence or absence of 1) an initial burst at the commencement of the ramp stretch, 2) a deceleration response at the beginning of the hold phase, and 3) a prompt silencing at muscle shortening. In addition, two kinds of dynamic indexes were calculated for 79 of the muscle spindle afferents. 4. Most spindle afferents responded readily to stretch, whereas the Golgi tendon organ afferents produced very poor stretch responses. All of them lacked a static response, whereas the dynamic response, when present at all, consisted of only a few impulses. 5. The dynamic index was higher for spindle primaries than for secondaries, and this difference was statistically significant although the distribution was unimodal for spindle afferents as a group. Hence, this parameter was a poor discriminator. 6. Initial bursts, deceleration responses, and silences during imposed shortening were more common in spindle primaries than in secondaries. The differences were significant in all these respects. 7. The three discrete parameters were statistically pairwise independent for the spindle afferents, justifying the combination of the three into a useful battery for discrimination between primary and secondary spindle afferents and the use of this battery as a partial data base for a probability approach towards a solid classification of human muscle afferents. PMID:2141632

  6. Greater excitability and firing irregularity of tufted cells underlies distinct afferent-evoked activity of olfactory bulb mitral and tufted cells.

    PubMed

    Burton, Shawn D; Urban, Nathaniel N

    2014-05-15

    Mitral and tufted cells, the two classes of principal neurons in the mammalian main olfactory bulb, exhibit morphological differences but remain widely viewed as functionally equivalent. Results from several recent studies, however, suggest that these two cell classes may encode complementary olfactory information in their distinct patterns of afferent-evoked activity. To understand how these differences in activity arise, we have performed the first systematic comparison of synaptic and intrinsic properties between mitral and tufted cells. Consistent with previous studies, we found that tufted cells fire with higher probability and rates and shorter latencies than mitral cells in response to physiological afferent stimulation. This stronger response of tufted cells could be partially attributed to synaptic differences, as tufted cells received stronger afferent-evoked excitation than mitral cells. However, differences in intrinsic excitability also contributed to the differences between mitral and tufted cell activity. Compared to mitral cells, tufted cells exhibited twofold greater excitability and peak instantaneous firing rates. These differences in excitability probably arise from differential expression of voltage-gated potassium currents, as tufted cells exhibited faster action potential repolarization and afterhyperpolarizations than mitral cells. Surprisingly, mitral and tufted cells also showed firing mode differences. While both cell classes exhibited regular firing and irregular stuttering of action potential clusters, tufted cells demonstrated a greater propensity to stutter than mitral cells. Collectively, stronger afferent-evoked excitation, greater intrinsic excitability and more irregular firing in tufted cells can combine to drive distinct responses of mitral and tufted cells to afferent-evoked input. PMID:24614745

  7. Cyclooxygenase-2 in Synaptic Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Hongwei; Chen, Chu

    2008-01-01

    Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), a rate-limiting enzyme converting arachidonic acid to prostaglandins and a key player in neuroinflammation, has been implicated in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases, and in traumatic brain injury- and ischemia-induced neuronal damage, and epileptogenesis. Accumulated information suggests that the contribution of COX-2 to neuropathology is associated with its involvement in synaptic modification. Inhibition or elevation of COX-2 has been shown to suppress or enhance excitatory glutamatergic neurotransmission and long-term potentiation (LTP). These events are mainly mediated via PGE2, the predominant reaction product of COX-2, and the PGE2 subtype 2 receptor (EP2)-protein kinase A pathway. Recent evidence shows that endogenous cannabinoids are substrates for COX-2 and can be oxygenated by COX-2 to form new classes of prostaglandins (prostaglandin glycerol esters and prostaglandin ethanolamides). These COX-2 oxidative metabolites of endocannabinoids, as novel signaling mediators, modulate synaptic transmission and plasticity and cause neurodegeneration. The actions of these COX-2 metabolites are likely mediated by mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) signal transduction pathways. These discoveries suggest that the contributions of COX-2 to neurotransmission and brain malfunction result not only from its conversion of arachidonic acid to classic prostaglandins but also from its oxidative metabolism of endocannabinoids to novel prostaglandins. Thus, elucidation of COX-2 in synaptic signaling may provide a mechanistic basis for designing new drugs aimed at preventing, treating or alleviating neuroinflammation-associated neurological disorders. PMID:18537667

  8. Hippocampal synaptic connectivity in phenylketonuria.

    PubMed

    Horling, Katja; Schlegel, Gudrun; Schulz, Sarah; Vierk, Ricardo; Ullrich, Kurt; Santer, René; Rune, Gabriele M

    2015-02-15

    In humans, lack of phenylalanine hydroxylase (Pah) activity results in phenylketonuria (PKU), which is associated with the development of severe mental retardation after birth. The underlying mechanisms, however, are poorly understood. Mutations of the Pah gene in Pah(enu2)/c57bl6 mice result in elevated levels of phenylalanine in serum similar to those in humans suffering from PKU. In our study, long-term potentiation (LTP) and paired-pulse facilitation, measured at CA3-CA1 Schaffer collateral synapses, were impaired in acute hippocampal slices of Pah(enu2)/c57bl6 mice. In addition, we found reduced expression of presynaptic proteins, such as synaptophysin and the synaptosomal-associated protein 25 (SNAP-25), and enhanced expression of postsynaptic marker proteins, such as synaptopodin and spinophilin. Stereological counting of spine synapses at the ultrastructural level revealed higher synaptic density in the hippocampus, commencing at 3 weeks and persisting up to 12 weeks after birth. Consistent effects were seen in response to phenylalanine treatment in cultures of dissociated hippocampal neurones. Most importantly, in the hippocampus of Pah(enu2)/c57bl6 mice, we found a significant reduction in microglia activity. Reorganization of hippocampal circuitry after birth, namely synaptic pruning, relies on elimination of weak synapses by activated microglia in response to neuronal activity. Hence, our data strongly suggest that reduced microglial activity in response to impaired synaptic transmission affects physiological postnatal remodelling of synapses in the hippocampus and may trigger the development of mental retardation in PKU patients after birth. PMID:25296915

  9. Engrailed Alters the Specificity of Synaptic Connections of Drosophila Auditory Neurons with the Giant Fiber

    PubMed Central

    Pézier, Adeline; Jezzini, Sami H.; Marie, Bruno

    2014-01-01

    We show that a subset of sound-detecting Johnston's Organ neurons (JONs) in Drosophila melanogaster, which express the transcription factors Engrailed (En) and Invected (Inv), form mixed electrical and chemical synaptic inputs onto the giant fiber (GF) dendrite. These synaptic connections are detected by trans-synaptic Neurobiotin (NB) transfer and by colocalization of Bruchpilot-short puncta. We then show that misexpressing En postmitotically in a second subset of sound-responsive JONs causes them to form ectopic electrical and chemical synapses with the GF, in turn causing that postsynaptic neuron to redistribute its dendritic branches into the vicinity of these afferents. We also introduce a simple electrophysiological recording paradigm for quantifying the presynaptic and postsynaptic electrical activity at this synapse, by measuring the extracellular sound-evoked potentials (SEPs) from the antennal nerve while monitoring the likelihood of the GF firing an action potential in response to simultaneous subthreshold sound and voltage stimuli. Ectopic presynaptic expression of En strengthens the synaptic connection, consistent with there being more synaptic contacts formed. Finally, RNAi-mediated knockdown of En and Inv in postmitotic neurons reduces SEP amplitude but also reduces synaptic strength at the JON–GF synapse. Overall, these results suggest that En and Inv in JONs regulate both neuronal excitability and synaptic connectivity. PMID:25164665

  10. Cellular effects of acute direct current stimulation: somatic and synaptic terminal effects

    PubMed Central

    Rahman, Asif; Reato, Davide; Arlotti, Mattia; Gasca, Fernando; Datta, Abhishek; Parra, Lucas C; Bikson, Marom

    2013-01-01

    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a non-invasive brain stimulation technique to modulate cortical excitability. Although increased/decreased excitability under the anode/cathode electrode is nominally associated with membrane depolarization/hyperpolarization, which cellular compartments (somas, dendrites, axons and their terminals) mediate changes in cortical excitability remains unaddressed. Here we consider the acute effects of DCS on excitatory synaptic efficacy. Using multi-scale computational models and rat cortical brain slices, we show the following. (1) Typical tDCS montages produce predominantly tangential (relative to the cortical surface) direction currents (4–12 times radial direction currents), even directly under electrodes. (2) Radial current flow (parallel to the somatodendritic axis) modulates synaptic efficacy consistent with somatic polarization, with depolarization facilitating synaptic efficacy. (3) Tangential current flow (perpendicular to the somatodendritic axis) modulates synaptic efficacy acutely (during stimulation) in an afferent pathway-specific manner that is consistent with terminal polarization, with hyperpolarization facilitating synaptic efficacy. (4) Maximal polarization during uniform DCS is expected at distal (the branch length is more than three times the membrane length constant) synaptic terminals, independent of and two–three times more susceptible than pyramidal neuron somas. We conclude that during acute DCS the cellular targets responsible for modulation of synaptic efficacy are concurrently somata and axon terminals, with the direction of cortical current flow determining the relative influence. PMID:23478132

  11. Low levels of methyl ?-cyclodextrin disrupt GluA1-dependent synaptic potentiation but not synaptic depression.

    PubMed

    Choi, Tae-Yong; Jung, Sunmin; Nah, Jihoon; Ko, Hui-Yeon; Jo, Su-Hyun; Chung, Gehoon; Park, Kyungpyo; Jung, Yong-Keun; Choi, Se-Young

    2015-02-01

    Methyl-?-cyclodextrin (M?CD) is a reagent that depletes cholesterol and disrupts lipid rafts, a type of cholesterol-enriched cell membrane microdomain. Lipid rafts are essential for neuronal functions such as synaptic transmission and plasticity, which are sensitive to even low doses of M?CD. However, how M?CD changes synaptic function, such as N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDA-R) activity, remains unclear. We monitored changes in synaptic transmission and plasticity after disrupting lipid rafts with M?CD. At low concentrations (0.5 mg/mL), M?CD decreased basal synaptic transmission and miniature excitatory post-synaptic current without changing NMDA-R-mediated synaptic transmission and the paired-pulse facilitation ratio. Interestingly, low doses of M?CD failed to deplete cholesterol or affect ?-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor (AMPA-R) and NMDA-R levels, while clearly reducing GluA1 levels selectively in the synaptosomal fraction. Low doses of M?CD decreased the inhibitory effects of NASPM, an inhibitor for GluA2-lacking AMPA-R. M?CD successfully decreased NMDA-R-mediated long-term potentiation but did not affect the formation of either NMDA-R-mediated or group I metabotropic glutamate receptor-dependent long-term depression. M?CD inhibited de-depression without affecting de-potentiation. These results suggest that M?CD regulates GluA1-dependent synaptic potentiation but not synaptic depression in a cholesterol-independent manner. PMID:25418874

  12. Cell-specific retrograde signals mediate antiparallel effects of angiotensin II on osmoreceptor afferents to vasopressin and oxytocin neurons.

    PubMed

    Stachniak, Tevye J; Trudel, Eric; Bourque, Charles W

    2014-07-24

    Homeostatic control of extracellular fluid osmolality in rats requires a parallel excitation of vasopressin (VP) and oxytocin (OT) neurosecretory neurons by osmoreceptor afferents to regulate the amount of water and sodium in the urine under normal conditions. However, during decreased blood volume (hypovolemia), natriuresis is suppressed, whereas osmotically driven antidiuresis is enhanced to promote retention of isotonic fluid. Because Angiotensin II (Ang II) is released centrally to indicate hypovolemia, we hypothesized that Ang II can evoke a state-dependent switch in circuit function. Here, we show that Ang II, a neuropeptide released centrally during hypovolemia, suppresses osmoreceptor-mediated synaptic excitation of OT neurons while potentiating excitation of VP neurons. Ang II does this by inducing cell-autonomous release of nitric oxide by VP neurons and endocannabinoids by OT neurons to respectively enhance and reduce glutamate release by osmoreceptor afferents. These findings indicate that peptide modulators such as Ang II can regulate synaptic communication to achieve a state-dependent and target-specific modulation of circuit activity. PMID:25043186

  13. Transposition and Intermingling of Galphai2 and Galphao afferences into single vomeronasal glomeruli in the Madagascan lesser Tenrec Echinops telfairi.

    PubMed

    Suárez, Rodrigo; Villalón, Aldo; Künzle, Heinz; Mpodozis, Jorge

    2009-01-01

    The vomeronasal system (VNS) mediates pheromonal communication in mammals. From the vomeronasal organ, two populations of sensory neurons, expressing either Galphai2 or Galphao proteins, send projections that end in glomeruli distributed either at the rostral or caudal half of the accessory olfactory bulb (AOB), respectively. Neurons at the AOB contact glomeruli of a single subpopulation. The dichotomic segregation of AOB glomeruli has been described in opossums, rodents and rabbits, while Primates and Laurasiatheres present the Galphai2-pathway only, or none at all (such as apes, some bats and aquatic species). We studied the AOB of the Madagascan lesser tenrec Echinops telfairi (Afrotheria: Afrosoricida) and found that Galphai2 and Galphao proteins are expressed in rostral and caudal glomeruli, respectively. However, the segregation of vomeronasal glomeruli at the AOB is not exclusive, as both pathways contained some glomeruli transposed into the adjoining subdomain. Moreover, some glomeruli seem to contain intermingled afferences from both pathways. Both the transposition and heterogeneity of vomeronasal afferences are features, to our knowledge, never reported before. The organization of AOB glomeruli suggests that synaptic integration might occur at the glomerular layer. Whether intrinsic AOB neurons may make synaptic contact with axon terminals of both subpopulations is an interesting possibility that would expand our understanding about the integration of vomeronasal pathways. PMID:19956694

  14. Response properties of pigeon otolith afferents to linear acceleration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Si, X.; Angelaki, D. E.; Dickman, J. D.

    1997-01-01

    In the present study, the sensitivity to sinusoidal linear accelerations in the plane of the utricular macula was tested in afferents. The head orientation relative to the translation axis was varied in order to determine the head position that elicited the maximal and minimal responses for each afferent. The response gain and phase values obtained to 0.5-Hz and 2-Hz linear acceleration stimuli were then plotted as a function of head orientation and a modified cosine function was fit to the data. From the best-fit cosine function, the predicted head orientations that would produce the maximal and minimal response gains were estimated. The estimated maximum response gains to linear acceleration in the utricular plane for the afferents varied between 75 and 1420 spikes s-1 g-1. The mean maximal gains for all afferents to 0.5-Hz and 2-Hz sinusoidal linear acceleration stimuli were 282 and 367 spikes s-1 g-1, respectively. The minimal response gains were essentially zero for most units. The response phases always led linear acceleration and remained constant for each afferent, regardless of head orientation. These response characteristics indicate that otolith afferents are cosine tuned and behave as one-dimensional linear accelerometers. The directions of maximal sensitivity to linear acceleration for the afferents varied throughout the plane of the utricle; however, most vectors were directed out of the opposite ear near the interaural axis. The response dynamics of the afferents were tested using stimulus frequencies ranging between 0.25 Hz and 10 Hz (0.1 g peak acceleration). Across stimulus frequencies, most afferents had increasing gains and constant phase values. These dynamic properties for individual afferents were fit with a simple transfer function that included three parameters: a mechanical time constant, a gain constant, and a fractional order distributed adaptation operator.

  15. What Is Transmitted in "Synaptic Transmission"?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

    2010-01-01

    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"…

  16. PSD-95-like membrane associated guanylate kinases (PSD-MAGUKs) and Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Weifeng

    2011-01-01

    Activity-dependent modification of excitatory synaptic transmission is fundamental for developmental plasticity of the neural circuits and experience-dependent plasticity. Synaptic glutamatergic receptors including AMPA receptors and NMDA receptors (AMPARs and NMDARs) are embedded in the highly organized protein network in the postsynaptic density. Overwhelming data have shown that PSD-95-like membrane associated guanylate kinases (PSD-MAGUKs), as a major family of scaffold proteins at glutamatergic synapses, regulate basal synaptic AMPAR function and trafficking. It is now clear that PSD-MAGUKs have multifaceted functions in terms of regulating synaptic transmission and plasticity. Here we discuss recent advancements in understanding the roles of PSD-95 and other family members of PSD-MAGUKs in synaptic plasticity, both as an anchoring protein for synaptic AMPARs and also as a signaling scaffold for mediating the interaction of the signaling complex and NMDARs. PMID:21450454

  17. Identification of a 34 kDa protein specific to synaptic vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Kenneth G.; Wendland, Beverly; Scheller, Richard H.

    2016-01-01

    In this study, we used synaptic vesicles purified from the electric organ of marine electric rays to search for novel molecules which have important functions in synaptic transmission. Proteins that copurified with synaptic vesicles were used to immunize rats, and the resulting antisera were then used to further characterize the vesicle proteins. One of the antisera recognizes a protein of 34 kDa, p34, that has several characteristics which suggest it is a synaptic vesicle specific protein: (1) it copurifies exclusively with the synaptic vesicle peak during permeation chromatography on a controlled pore glass beads column, (2) it can be immunoprecipitated with intact synaptic vesicles and (3) it is specifically localized to the nervous system. The results suggest that p34 is a synaptic vesicle specific protein with a widespread distribution in the nervous system. PMID:8358632

  18. Response properties from turtle auditory hair cell afferent fibers suggest spike generation is driven by synchronized release both between and within synapses

    PubMed Central

    Schnee, M. E.; Castellano-Muñoz, M.

    2013-01-01

    Inner ear hair cell afferent fiber synapses are capable of transferring information at high rates for long periods of time with extraordinary fidelity. As at other sensory synapses, hair cells rely on graded receptor potentials and unique vesicle trafficking and release properties of ribbon synapses to relay intensity information. Postsynaptic recordings from afferent fibers of the turtle auditory papilla identified excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) that were fast AMPA receptor-based responses with rapid onset and decay times. EPSCs varied in amplitude by ?15× per fiber, with kinetics that showed a tendency to slow at larger amplitudes. Complex EPSCs were produced by temporal summation of single events, likely across synapses. Complex EPSCs were more efficient at generating action potentials than single EPSCs. Potassium-evoked release increased the frequency of EPSCs, in particular complex events, but did not increase EPSC amplitudes. Temporal summation of EPSCs across synapses may underlie action potential generation at these synapses. Broad amplitude histograms were probed for mechanisms of multivesicular release with reduced external Ca2+ or the introduction of Cd2+ or Sr2+ to uncouple release. The results are consistent with broad amplitude histograms being generated by a combination of the variability in synaptic vesicle size and coordinated release of these vesicles. It is posited that multivesicular release plays less of a role in multisynaptic ribbon synapses than in single synaptic afferent fibers. PMID:23596330

  19. Effect of Microgravity on Afferent Innervation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1998-01-01

    Presentations and publications are: (1) an audiovisual summary web presentation on results from SLM-MIR avian experiments. A color presentation summarizing results from the SLM-MIR and STS-29 avian experiments; (2) color threshold and ratio of S 100B MAP5, NF68/200, GABA and GAD; (3) chicken (Gallus domesticus) inner ear afferents; (4) microgravity in the STS-29 Space Shuttle Discovery affected the vestibular system of chick embryos; (5) expression of S 100B in sensory and secretory cells of the vertebrate inner ear; (6) otoconia biogenesis, phylogeny, composition and functional attributes;(7) the glycan keratin sulfate in inner ear crystals; (8) elliptical-P cells in the avian perilymphatic interface of the tegmentum vasculosum; and (9) LAMP2c and S100B upregulation in brain stem after VIIIth nerve deafferentation.

  20. Chicken (Gallus domesticus) inner ear afferents

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hara, H.; Chen, X.; Hartsfield, J. F.; Hara, J.; Martin, D.; Fermin, C. D.

    1998-01-01

    Neurons from the vestibular (VG) and the statoacoustic (SAG) ganglion of the chick (Gallus domesticus) were evaluated histologically and morphometrically. Embryos at stages 34 (E8 days), 39 (E13 days) and 44 (E18 days) were sacrificed and temporal bones microdissected. Specimens were embedded in JB-4 methacrylate plastic, and stained with a mixture of 0.2% toluidine blue (TB) and 0.1% basic Fuschin in 25% ethanol or with a mixture of 2% TB and 1% paraphenylenediamine (PDA) for axon and myelin measurement study. Images of the VIIIth nerve were produced by a V150 (R) color imaging system and the contour of 200-300 neuronal bodies (perikarya) was traced directly on a video screen with a mouse in real time. The cross-sectional area of VG perikarya was 67.29 micrometers2 at stage 34 (E8), 128.46 micrometers2 at stage 39 (E13) and 275.85 micrometers2 at stage 44 (E18). The cross-sectional area of SAG perikarya was 62.44 micrometers2 at stage 34 (E8), 102.05 micrometers2 at stage 39 (E13) and 165.02 micrometers2 at stage 44 (E18). A significant cross-sectional area increase of the VG perikarya between stage 39 (E13) and stage 44 (E18) was determined. We randomly measured the cross-sectional area of myelin and axoplasm of hatchling afferent nerves, and found a correspondence between axoplasmic and myelin cross-sectional area in the utricular, saccular and semicircular canal nerve branches of the nerve. The results suggest that the period between stage 34 (E8) and 39 (E13) is a critical period for afferent neuronal development. Physiological and behavioral vestibular properties of developing and maturing hatchlings may change accordingly. The results compliment previous work by other investigators and provide valuable anatomical measures useful to correlate physiological data obtained from stimulation of the whole nerve or its parts.

  1. Unmyelinated type II afferent neurons report cochlear damage.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chang; Glowatzki, Elisabeth; Fuchs, Paul Albert

    2015-11-24

    In the mammalian cochlea, acoustic information is carried to the brain by the predominant (95%) large-diameter, myelinated type I afferents, each of which is postsynaptic to a single inner hair cell. The remaining thin, unmyelinated type II afferents extend hundreds of microns along the cochlear duct to contact many outer hair cells. Despite this extensive arbor, type II afferents are weakly activated by outer hair cell transmitter release and are insensitive to sound. Intriguingly, type II afferents remain intact in damaged regions of the cochlea. Here, we show that type II afferents are activated when outer hair cells are damaged. This response depends on both ionotropic (P2X) and metabotropic (P2Y) purinergic receptors, binding ATP released from nearby supporting cells in response to hair cell damage. Selective activation of P2Y receptors increased type II afferent excitability by the closure of KCNQ-type potassium channels, a potential mechanism for the painful hypersensitivity (that we term "noxacusis" to distinguish from hyperacusis without pain) that can accompany hearing loss. Exposure to the KCNQ channel activator retigabine suppressed the type II fiber's response to hair cell damage. Type II afferents may be the cochlea's nociceptors, prompting avoidance of further damage to the irreparable inner ear. PMID:26553995

  2. Synaptic Growth: Dancing with Adducin

    E-print Network

    Stevens, Robin J.

    Manipulations of the actin-capping protein adducin in Drosophila and mammalian neurons provide new insights into the mechanisms linking structural changes to synaptic plasticity and learning. Adducin regulates synaptic ...

  3. A regional ultrastructural analysis of the cellular and synaptic architecture in the chinchilla cristae ampullares

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lysakowski, A.; Goldberg, J. M.

    1997-01-01

    The chinchilla crista ampullaris was studied in 10 samples, each containing 32 consecutive ultrathin sections of the entire neuroepithelium. Dissector methods were used to estimate the incidence of various synaptic features, and results were confirmed in completely reconstructed hair cells. There are large regional variations in cellular and synaptic architecture. Type I and type II hair cells are shorter, broader, and less densely packed in the central zone than in the intermediate and peripheral zones. Complex calyx endings are most common centrally. On average, there are 15-20 ribbon synapses and 25-30 calyceal invaginations in each type I hair cell. Synapses and invaginations are most numerous centrally. Central type II hair cells receive considerably fewer afferent boutons than do peripheral type II hair cells, but have similar numbers of ribbon synapses. The numbers are similar because central type II hair cells make more synapses with the outer faces of calyx endings and with individual afferent boutons. Most afferent boutons get one ribbon synapse. Boutons without ribbon synapses were only found peripherally, and boutons getting multiple synapses were most frequent centrally. Throughout the neuroepithelium, there is an average of three to four efferent boutons on each type II hair cell and calyx ending. Reciprocal synapses are rare. Most synaptic ribbons in type I hair cells are spherules; those in type II hair cells can be spherical or elongated and are particularly heterogeneous centrally. Consistent with the proposal that the crista is concentrically organized, the intermediate and peripheral zones are each similar in their cellular and synaptic architecture near the base and near the planum. An especially differentiated subzone may exist in the middle of the central zone.

  4. Excitation of afferent cardiac sympathetic nerve fibres during myocardial ischaemia

    PubMed Central

    Brown, A. M.

    1967-01-01

    1. Occlusion of the main left coronary artery of lightly anaesthetized cats provoked a pseudaffective reaction. The afferent pathway was in the cardiac sympathetic nerves. 2. The compound action potential evoked in the inferior or middle cardiac nerves by stimulation of the thoracic sympathetic trunk contained two elevations, a small A? wave and a much larger sC wave. Occasionally a B wave was present. 3. During coronary occlusion, the A? elevation was reduced by 35-55%, indicating afferent activity in these fibres. Multifibre preparations also showed increased afferent discharge during occlusion. 4. It seems probable that the afferent activity in these fibres was mainly responsible for signalling the pseudaffective response elicited by coronary occlusion. 5. Myocardial ischaemia produced by coronary occlusion was probably the stimulus for the increased activity. PMID:6038025

  5. Discharges of Single Hindlimb Afferents in the Freely Moving Cat

    E-print Network

    Prochazka, Arthur

    . The majority of afferents were from muscle spindle primary end- ings in hindlimb muscles. 3. Ankle extensor of active muscle contraction. The EMG response to brisk stretches of the ankle extensor muscle indicated

  6. Ceramidase Regulates Synaptic Vesicle Exocytosis and Trafficking

    PubMed Central

    Rohrbough, Jeffrey; Rushton, Emma; Palanker, Laura; Woodruff, Elvin; Matthies, Heinrich J. G.; Acharya, Usha; Acharya, Jairaj K.; Broadie, Kendal

    2009-01-01

    A screen for Drosophila synaptic dysfunction mutants identified slug-a-bed (slab). The slab gene encodes ceramidase, a central enzyme in sphingolipid metabolism and regulation. Sphingolipids are major constituents of lipid rafts, membrane domains with roles in vesicle trafficking, and signaling pathways. Null slab mutants arrest as fully developed embryos with severely reduced movement. The SLAB protein is widely expressed in different tissues but enriched in neurons at all stages of development. Targeted neuronal expression of slab rescues mutant lethality, demonstrating the essential neuronal function of the protein. C5-ceramide applied to living preparations is rapidly accumulated at neuromuscular junction (NMJ) synapses dependent on the SLAB expression level, indicating that synaptic sphingolipid trafficking and distribution is regulated by SLAB function. Evoked synaptic currents at slab mutant NMJs are reduced by 50–70%, whereas postsynaptic glutamate-gated currents are normal, demonstrating a specific presynaptic impairment. Hypertonic saline-evoked synaptic vesicle fusion is similarly impaired by 50–70%, demonstrating a loss of readily releasable vesicles. In addition, FM1-43 dye uptake is reduced in slab mutant presynaptic terminals, indicating a smaller cycling vesicle pool. Ultrastructural analyses of mutants reveal a normal vesicle distribution clustered and docked at active zones, but fewer vesicles in reserve regions, and a twofold to threefold increased incidence of vesicles linked together and tethered at the plasma membrane. These results indicate that SLAB ceramidase function controls presynaptic terminal sphingolipid composition to regulate vesicle fusion and trafficking, and thus the strength and reliability of synaptic transmission. PMID:15356190

  7. Differential central projections of vestibular afferents in pigeons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dickman, J. D.; Fang, Q.

    1996-01-01

    The question of whether a differential distribution of vestibular afferent information to central nuclear neurons is present in pigeons was studied using neural tracer compounds. Discrete tracing of afferent fibers innervating the individual semicircular canal and otolith organs was produced by sectioning individual branches of the vestibular nerve that innervate the different receptor organs and applying crystals of horseradish peroxidase, or a horseradish peroxidase/cholera toxin mixture, or a biocytin compound for neuronal uptake and transport. Afferent fibers and their terminal distributions within the brainstem and cerebellum were visualized subsequently. Discrete areas in the pigeon central nervous system that receive primary vestibular input include the superior, dorsal lateral, ventral lateral, medial, descending, and tangential vestibular nuclei; the A and B groups; the intermediate, medial, and lateral cerebellar nuclei; and the nodulus, the uvula, and the paraflocculus. Generally, the vertical canal afferents projected heavily to medial regions in the superior and descending vestibular nuclei as well as the A group. Vertical canal projections to the medial and lateral vestibular nuclei were observed but were less prominent. Horizontal canal projections to the superior and descending vestibular nuclei were much more centrally located than those of the vertical canals. A more substantial projection to the medial and lateral vestibular nuclei was seen with horizontal canal afferents compared to vertical canal fibers. Afferents innervating the utricle and saccule terminated generally in the lateral regions of all vestibular nuclei in areas that were separate from the projections of the semicircular canals. In addition, utricular fibers projected to regions in the vestibular nuclei that overlapped with the horizontal semicircular canal terminal fields, whereas saccular afferents projected to regions that received vertical canal fiber terminations. Lagenar afferents projected throughout the cochlear nuclei, to the dorsolateral regions of the cerebellar nuclei, and to lateral regions of the superior, lateral, medial, and descending vestibular nuclei.

  8. Extrinsic afferent nerve sensitivity and enteric neurotransmission in murine jejunum in vitro.

    PubMed

    Mueller, Mario H; Xue, Bing; Glatzle, Joerg; Hahn, Jutta; Grundy, David; Kreis, Martin E

    2009-10-01

    Enteric and extrinsic sensory neurons respond to similar stimuli. Thus they may be activated in series or in parallel. Because signal transmission via synapses or mediator release would depend on calcium, we investigated its role for extrinsic afferent sensitivity to chemical and mechanical stimulation. Extracellular multiunit afferent recordings were made in vitro from paravascular nerve bundles supplying the mouse jejunum. Intraluminal pressure and afferent nerve responses were recorded under control conditions and under four conditions designed to interfere with enteric neurotransmission. We found that phasic intestinal contractions ceased after switching perfusion to Ca(2+)-free buffer with or without a purinergic P2 receptor antagonist, pyridoxal phosphate-6-azo(benzene-2,4-disulfonic acid) (PPADS) or cadmium (blocking all Ca(2+)-channels) but not following omega-conotoxin GVIA (N-type Ca(2+)-channel blocker). Luminal HCl (pH 2) and 5-HT (500 microM) evoked peak firing of 17 +/- 4 impulses per second (imp/s) (n = 10) and 21 +/- 4 imp/s (n = 13) under control conditions. These responses were reduced to 4 +/- 2 imp/s and 5 +/- 2 imp/s by cadmium (n = 7, P < 0.05), to 7 +/- 2 imp/s and 6 +/- 1 imp/s by Ca(2+)-free perfusion (n = 6, P < 0.05), and to 3 +/- 1 imp/s and 4 +/- 1 imp/s by Ca(2+)-free perfusion with PPADS (n = 6, P < 0.05). Responses were unchanged by omega-conotoxin GVIA. Mechanical ramp distension of the intestinal segment to 60 cmH(2)O was not altered by any of the experimental conditions. We concluded that HCl and 5-HT activate extrinsic afferents via a calcium-dependent mechanism, which is unlikely to involve enteric neurons carrying N-type calcium channels. Extrinsic mechanosensitivity is independent of enteric neurotransmission. It appears that cross talk from the enteric to the extrinsic nervous system does not mediate extrinsic afferent sensitivity. PMID:19679823

  9. Afferent innervation of the utricular macula in pigeons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Si, Xiaohong; Zakir, Mridha Md; Dickman, J. David

    2003-01-01

    Biotinylated dextran amine (BDA) was used to retrogradely label afferents innervating the utricular macula in adult pigeons. The pigeon utriclar macula consists of a large rectangular-shaped neuroepithelium with a dorsally curved anterior edge and an extended medioposterior tail. The macula could be demarcated into several regions based on cytoarchitectural differences. The striola occupied 30% of the macula and contained a large density of type I hair cells with fewer type II hair cells. Medial and lateral extrastriola zones were located outside the striola and contained only type II hair cells. A six- to eight-cell-wide band of type II hair cells existed near the center of the striola. The reversal line marked by the morphological polarization of hair cells coursed throughout the epithelium, near the peripheral margin, and through the center of the type II band. Calyx afferents innervated type I hair cells with calyceal terminals that contained between 2 and 15 receptor cells. Calyx afferents were located only in the striola region, exclusive of the type II band, had small total fiber innervation areas and low innervation densities. Dimorph afferents innervated both type I and type II hair cells with calyceal and bouton terminals and were primarily located in the striola region. Dimorph afferents had smaller calyceal terminals with few type I hair cells, extended fiber branches with bouton terminals and larger innervation areas. Bouton afferents innervated only type II hair cells in the extrastriola and type II band regions. Bouton afferents innervating the type II band had smaller terminal fields with fewer bouton terminals and smaller innervation areas than fibers located in the extrastriolar zones. Bouton afferents had the most bouton terminals on the longest fibers, the largest innervation areas with the highest innervation densities of all afferents. Among all afferents, smaller terminal innervation fields were observed in the striola and large fields were located in the extrastriola. The cellular organization and innervation patterns of the utricular maculae in birds appear to represent an organ in adaptive evolution, different from that observed for amphibians or mammals.

  10. Direct targeting of peptidergic amygdalar neurons by noradrenergic afferents: linking stress-integrative circuitry.

    PubMed

    Kravets, J L; Reyes, B A S; Unterwald, E M; Van Bockstaele, E J

    2015-01-01

    Amygdalar norepinephrine (NE) plays a key role in regulating neural responses to emotionally arousing stimuli and is involved in memory consolidation of emotionally charged events. Corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) and dynorphin (DYN), two neuropeptides that mediate the physiological and behavioral responses to stress, are abundant in the central nucleus of the amygdala (CeA), and directly innervate brainstem noradrenergic locus coeruleus (LC) neurons. Whether the CRF- and DYN-containing amygdalar neurons receive direct noradrenergic innervation has not yet been elucidated. The present study sought to define cellular substrates underlying noradrenergic modulation of CRF- and DYN-containing neurons in the CeA using immunohistochemistry and electron microscopy. Ultrastructural analysis revealed that NE-labeled axon terminals form synapses with CRF- and DYN-containing neurons in the CeA. Semi-quantitative analysis showed that approximately 31 % of NET-labeled axon terminals targeted CeA neurons that co-expressed DYN and CRF. As a major source of CRF innervation to the LC, it is also not known whether CRF-containing CeA neurons are directly targeted by noradrenergic afferents. To test this, retrograde tract tracing using FluoroGold from the LC was combined with immunocytochemical detection of CRF and NET in the CeA. Our results revealed a population of LC-projecting CRF-containing CeA neurons that are directly innervated by NE afferents. Analysis showed that approximately 34 % of NET-labeled axon terminals targeted LC-projecting CeA neurons that contain CRF. Taken together, these results indicate significant interactions between NE, CRF and DYN in this critical limbic region and reveal direct synaptic interactions of NE with amygdalar CRF that influence the LC-NE arousal system. PMID:24271021

  11. Optical fiber synaptic sensor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pisarchik, A. N.; Jaimes-Reátegui, R.; Sevilla-Escoboza, R.; García-Lopez, J. H.; Kazantsev, V. B.

    2011-06-01

    Understanding neuron connections is a great challenge, which is needed to solve many important problems in neurobiology and neuroengineering for recreation of brain functions and efficient biorobotics. In particular, a design of an optical synapse capable to communicate with neuron spike sequences would be crucial to improve the functionality of neuromimmetic networks. In this work we propose an optical synaptic sensor based on an erbium-doped fiber laser driven by a FitzHung-Nagumo electronic neuron, to connect with another electronic neuron. Two possible optical synaptic configurations are analyzed for optoelectronic coupling between neurons: laser cavity loss modulation and pump laser modulation. The control parameters of the proposed optical synapse provide additional degrees of flexibility to the neuron connection traditionally controlled only by coupling strengths in artificial networks.

  12. A Physiologic Role for Serotonergic Transmission in Adult Rat Taste Buds

    PubMed Central

    Jaber, Luc; Zhao, Fang-li; Kolli, Tamara; Herness, Scott

    2014-01-01

    Of the multiple neurotransmitters and neuropeptides expressed in the mammalian taste bud, serotonin remains both the most studied and least understood. Serotonin is expressed in a subset of taste receptor cells that form synapses with afferent nerve fibers (type III cells) and was once thought to be essential to neurotransmission (now understood as purinergic). However, the discovery of the 5-HT1A serotonin receptor in a subset of taste receptor cells paracrine to type III cell suggested a role in cell-to-cell communication during the processing of taste information. Functional data describing this role are lacking. Using anatomical and neurophysiological techniques, this study proposes a modulatory role for serotonin during the processing of taste information. Double labeling immunocytochemical and single cell RT-PCR technique experiments documented that 5-HT1A-expressing cells co-expressed markers for type II cells, cells which express T1R or T2R receptors and release ATP. These cells did not co-express type III cells markers. Neurophysiological recordings from the chorda tympani nerve, which innervates anterior taste buds, were performed prior to and during intravenous injection of a 5-HT1A receptor antagonist. These experiments revealed that serotonin facilitates processing of taste information for tastants representing sweet, sour, salty, and bitter taste qualities. On the other hand, injection of ondansetron, a 5-HT3 receptor antagonist, was without effect. Collectively, these data support the hypothesis that serotonin is a crucial element in a finely-tuned feedback loop involving the 5-HT1A receptor, ATP, and purinoceptors. It is hypothesized that serotonin facilitates gustatory signals by regulating the release of ATP through ATP-release channels possibly through phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate resynthesis. By doing so, 5-HT1A activation prevents desensitization of post-synaptic purinergic receptors expressed on afferent nerve fibers and enhances the afferent signal. Serotonin may thus play a major modulatory role within peripheral taste in shaping the afferent taste signals prior to their transmission across gustatory nerves. PMID:25386961

  13. Rab3 superprimes synaptic vesicles for release: implications for short-term synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Schlüter, Oliver M; Basu, Jayeeta; Südhof, Thomas C; Rosenmund, Christian

    2006-01-25

    Presynaptic vesicle trafficking and priming are important steps in regulating synaptic transmission and plasticity. The four closely related small GTP-binding proteins Rab3A, Rab3B, Rab3C, and Rab3D are believed to be important for these steps. In mice, the complete absence of all Rab3s leads to perinatal lethality accompanied by a 30% reduction of probability of Ca2+-triggered synaptic release. This study examines the role of Rab3 during Ca2+-triggered release in more detail and identifies its impact on short-term plasticity. Using patch-clamp electrophysiology of autaptic neuronal cultures from Rab3-deficient mouse hippocampus, we show that excitatory Rab3-deficient neurons display unique time- and frequency-dependent short-term plasticity characteristics in response to spike trains. Analysis of vesicle release and repriming kinetics as well as Ca2+ sensitivity of release indicate that Rab3 acts on a subset of primed, fusion competent vesicles. They lower the amount of Ca2+ required for action potential-triggered release, which leads to a boosting of release probability, but their action also introduces a significant delay in the supply of these modified vesicles. As a result, Rab3-induced modifications to primed vesicles causes a transient increase in the transduction efficacy of synaptic action potential trains and optimizes the encoding of synaptic information at an intermediate spike frequency range. PMID:16436611

  14. The role of mitochondrially derived ATP in synaptic vesicle recycling.

    PubMed

    Pathak, Divya; Shields, Lauren Y; Mendelsohn, Bryce A; Haddad, Dominik; Lin, Wei; Gerencser, Akos A; Kim, Hwajin; Brand, Martin D; Edwards, Robert H; Nakamura, Ken

    2015-09-11

    Synaptic mitochondria are thought to be critical in supporting neuronal energy requirements at the synapse, and bioenergetic failure at the synapse may impair neural transmission and contribute to neurodegeneration. However, little is known about the energy requirements of synaptic vesicle release or whether these energy requirements go unmet in disease, primarily due to a lack of appropriate tools and sensitive assays. To determine the dependence of synaptic vesicle cycling on mitochondrially derived ATP levels, we developed two complementary assays sensitive to mitochondrially derived ATP in individual, living hippocampal boutons. The first is a functional assay for mitochondrially derived ATP that uses the extent of synaptic vesicle cycling as a surrogate for ATP level. The second uses ATP FRET sensors to directly measure ATP at the synapse. Using these assays, we show that endocytosis has high ATP requirements and that vesicle reacidification and exocytosis require comparatively little energy. We then show that to meet these energy needs, mitochondrially derived ATP is rapidly dispersed in axons, thereby maintaining near normal levels of ATP even in boutons lacking mitochondria. As a result, the capacity for synaptic vesicle cycling is similar in boutons without mitochondria as in those with mitochondria. Finally, we show that loss of a key respiratory subunit implicated in Leigh disease markedly decreases mitochondrially derived ATP levels in axons, thus inhibiting synaptic vesicle cycling. This proves that mitochondria-based energy failure can occur and be detected in individual neurons that have a genetic mitochondrial defect. PMID:26126824

  15. Dystroglycan mediates homeostatic synaptic plasticity at GABAergic synapses

    PubMed Central

    Pribiag, Horia; Peng, Huashan; Shah, Waris Ali; Stellwagen, David; Carbonetto, Salvatore

    2014-01-01

    Dystroglycan (DG), a cell adhesion molecule well known to be essential for skeletal muscle integrity and formation of neuromuscular synapses, is also present at inhibitory synapses in the central nervous system. Mutations that affect DG function not only result in muscular dystrophies, but also in severe cognitive deficits and epilepsy. Here we demonstrate a role of DG during activity-dependent homeostatic regulation of hippocampal inhibitory synapses. Prolonged elevation of neuronal activity up-regulates DG expression and glycosylation, and its localization to inhibitory synapses. Inhibition of protein synthesis prevents the activity-dependent increase in synaptic DG and GABAA receptors (GABAARs), as well as the homeostatic scaling up of GABAergic synaptic transmission. RNAi-mediated knockdown of DG blocks homeostatic scaling up of inhibitory synaptic strength, as does knockdown of like-acetylglucosaminyltransferase (LARGE)—a glycosyltransferase critical for DG function. In contrast, DG is not required for the bicuculline-induced scaling down of excitatory synaptic strength or the tetrodotoxin-induced scaling down of inhibitory synaptic strength. The DG ligand agrin increases GABAergic synaptic strength in a DG-dependent manner that mimics homeostatic scaling up induced by increased activity, indicating that activation of this pathway alone is sufficient to regulate GABAAR trafficking. These data demonstrate that DG is regulated in a physiologically relevant manner in neurons and that DG and its glycosylation are essential for homeostatic plasticity at inhibitory synapses. PMID:24753587

  16. [Peptidergic modulation of the hippocampus synaptic activity].

    PubMed

    Skrebitski?, V G; Kondratenko, R V; Povarov, I S; Dereviagin, V I

    2011-11-01

    Effects of two newly synthesized nootropic and anxiolytic dipeptides: Noopept and Selank 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) or Selank (2 microM) significantly increased the frequency of spike-dependent spontaneous m1PSCs, whereas spike-independent mlPSCs remained unchanged. It was suggested that both peptides mediated their effect sue to activation of inhibitory interneurons terminating on CA1 pyramidal cells. Results of current clamp recording of inhibitory interneurons residing in stratum radiatum confirmed this suggestion, at least for Noonent. PMID:22390072

  17. Studying synaptic efficiency by post-hoc immunolabelling

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background In terms of vesicular recycling, synaptic efficiency is a key determinant of the fidelity of synaptic transmission. The ability of a presynaptic terminal to reuse its vesicular content is thought to be a signature of synaptic maturity and this process depends on the activity of several proteins that govern exo/endocytosis. Upon stimulation, individual terminals in networks of cultured cerebellar granule neurons exhibit heterogeneous exocytic responses, which reflect the distinct states of maturity and plasticity intrinsic to individual synaptic terminals. This dynamic scenario serves as the substrate for processes such as scaling, plasticity and synaptic weight redistribution. Presynaptic strength has been associated with the activity of several types of proteins, including the scaffolding proteins that form the active zone cytomatrix and the proteins involved in presynaptic exocytosis. Methods We have combined fluorescence imaging techniques using the styryl dye FM1-43 in primary cultures of cerebellar granule cells with subsequent?post-hoc?immunocytochemistry in order to study synaptic efficiency in terms of vesicular release. We describe a protocol to easily quantify these results with minimal user intervention. Results In this study we describe a technique that specifically correlates presynaptic activity with the levels of presynaptic markers. This method involves the use of the styryl dye FM1-43 to estimate the release capacity of a synaptic terminal, and the subsequent post-hoc immunolabelling of thousands of individual nerve terminals. We observed a strong correlation between the release capacity of the nerve terminal and the levels of the RIM1? but not the Munc13-1 protein in the active zone. Conclusions Our findings support those of previous studies and point out to RIM1? as a crucial factor in determining synaptic efficiency. These results also demonstrate that this technique is a useful tool to analyse the molecular differences underlying the heterogeneous responses exhibited by neuronal networks. PMID:24138605

  18. The origin of glutamatergic synaptic inputs controls synaptic plasticity and its modulation by alcohol in mice nucleus accumbens

    PubMed Central

    Ji, Xincai; Saha, Sucharita; Martin, Gilles E.

    2015-01-01

    It is widely accepted that long-lasting changes of synaptic strength in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), a brain region involved in drug reward, mediate acute and chronic effects of alcohol. However, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the effects of alcohol on synaptic plasticity is limited by the fact that the NAc receives glutamatergic inputs from distinct brain regions (e.g., the prefrontal cortex (PFCx), the amygdala and the hippocampus), each region providing different information (e.g., spatial, emotional and cognitive). Combining whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and the optogenetic technique, we examined synaptic plasticity, and its regulation by alcohol, at cortical, hippocampal and amygdala inputs in fresh slices of mouse tissue. We showed that the origin of synaptic inputs determines the basic properties of glutamatergic synaptic transmission, the expression of spike-timing dependent long-term depression (tLTD) and long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term potentiation (tLTP) and their regulation by alcohol. While we observed both tLTP and tLTD at amygadala and hippocampal synapses, we showed that cortical inputs only undergo tLTD. Functionally, we provide evidence that acute Ethyl Alcohol (EtOH) has little effects on higher order information coming from the PFCx, while severely impacting the ability of emotional and contextual information to induce long-lasting changes of synaptic strength. PMID:26257641

  19. Structure activity relationship of synaptic and junctional neurotransmission

    PubMed Central

    Goyal, Raj K; Chaudhury, Arun

    2013-01-01

    Chemical neurotransmission may include transmission to local or remote sites. Locally, contact between ‘bare’ portions of the bulbous nerve terminal termed a varicosity and the effector cell may be in the form of either synapse or non-synaptic contact. Traditionally, all local transmissions between nerves and effector cells are considered synaptic in nature. This is particularly true for communication between neurons. However, communication between nerves and other effectors such as smooth muscles has been described as nonsynaptic or junctional in nature. Nonsynaptic neurotransmission is now also increasing recognized in the CNS. This review focuses on the relationship between structure and function that orchestrate synaptic and junctional neurotransmissions. A synapse is a specialized focal contact between the presynaptic active zone capable for ultrafast release of soluble transmitters and the postsynaptic density that cluster ionotropic receptors. The presynaptic and the postsynaptic areas are separated by the ‘closed’ synaptic cavity. The physiological hallmark of the synapse is ultrafast postsynaptic potentials lasting in milliseconds. In contrast, junctions are juxtapositions of nerve terminals and the effector cells without clear synaptic specializations and the junctional space is ‘open’ to the extracellular space. Based on the nature of the transmitters, postjunctional receptors and their separation from the release sites, the junctions can be divided into ‘close’ and ‘wide’ junctions. Functionally, the ‘close’ and the ‘wide’ junctions can be distinguished by postjunctional potentials lasting ~1 second and 10s of seconds, respectively. Both synaptic and junctional communications are common between neurons; however, junctional transmission is the rule at many neuro-non-neural effectors. PMID:23535140

  20. Axonal Noise as a Source of Synaptic Variability

    PubMed Central

    Neishabouri, Ali; Faisal, A. Aldo

    2014-01-01

    Post-synaptic potential (PSP) variability is typically attributed to mechanisms inside synapses, yet recent advances in experimental methods and biophysical understanding have led us to reconsider the role of axons as highly reliable transmission channels. We show that in many thin axons of our brain, the action potential (AP) waveform and thus the Ca++ signal controlling vesicle release at synapses will be significantly affected by the inherent variability of ion channel gating. We investigate how and to what extent fluctuations in the AP waveform explain observed PSP variability. Using both biophysical theory and stochastic simulations of central and peripheral nervous system axons from vertebrates and invertebrates, we show that channel noise in thin axons (<1 µm diameter) causes random fluctuations in AP waveforms. AP height and width, both experimentally characterised parameters of post-synaptic response amplitude, vary e.g. by up to 20 mV and 0.5 ms while a single AP propagates in C-fibre axons. We show how AP height and width variabilities increase with a ¾ power-law as diameter decreases and translate these fluctuations into post-synaptic response variability using biophysical data and models of synaptic transmission. We find for example that for mammalian unmyelinated axons with 0.2 µm diameter (matching cerebellar parallel fibres) axonal noise alone can explain half of the PSP variability in cerebellar synapses. We conclude that axonal variability may have considerable impact on synaptic response variability. Thus, in many experimental frameworks investigating synaptic transmission through paired-cell recordings or extracellular stimulation of presynaptic neurons, causes of variability may have been confounded. We thereby show how bottom-up aggregation of molecular noise sources contributes to our understanding of variability observed at higher levels of biological organisation. PMID:24809823

  1. Spontaneous Activity Drives Local Synaptic Plasticity In Vivo.

    PubMed

    Winnubst, Johan; Cheyne, Juliette E; Niculescu, Dragos; Lohmann, Christian

    2015-07-15

    Spontaneous activity fine-tunes neuronal connections in the developing brain. To explore the underlying synaptic plasticity mechanisms, we monitored naturally occurring changes in spontaneous activity at individual synapses with whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and simultaneous calcium imaging in the mouse visual cortex in vivo. Analyzing activity changes across large populations of synapses revealed a simple and efficient local plasticity rule: synapses that exhibit low synchronicity with nearby neighbors (<12 ?m) become depressed in their transmission frequency. Asynchronous electrical stimulation of individual synapses in hippocampal slices showed that this is due to a decrease in synaptic transmission efficiency. Accordingly, experimentally increasing local synchronicity, by stimulating synapses in response to spontaneous activity at neighboring synapses, stabilized synaptic transmission. Finally, blockade of the high-affinity proBDNF receptor p75(NTR) prevented the depression of asynchronously stimulated synapses. Thus, spontaneous activity drives local synaptic plasticity at individual synapses in an "out-of-sync, lose-your-link" fashion through proBDNF/p75(NTR) signaling to refine neuronal connectivity. VIDEO ABSTRACT. PMID:26182421

  2. Synaptic vulnerability in spinal muscular atrophy 

    E-print Network

    Murray, Lyndsay M.

    2010-01-01

    Mounting evidence suggests that synaptic connections are early pathological targets in many neurodegenerative diseases, including motor neuron disease. A better understanding of synaptic pathology is therefore likely to ...

  3. Synaptic Plasticity and Translation Initiation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Klann, Eric; Antion, Marcia D.; Banko, Jessica L.; Hou, Lingfei

    2004-01-01

    It is widely accepted that protein synthesis, including local protein synthesis at synapses, is required for several forms of synaptic plasticity. Local protein synthesis enables synapses to control synaptic strength independent of the cell body via rapid protein production from pre-existing mRNA. Therefore, regulation of translation initiation is…

  4. Synaptic dimorphism in Onychophoran cephalic ganglia.

    PubMed

    Peña-Contreras, Z; Mendoza-Briceño, R V; Miranda-Contreras, L; Palacios-Prü, E L

    2007-03-01

    The taxonomic location of the Onychophora has been controversial because of their phenotypic and genotypic characteristics, related to both annelids and arthropods. We analyzed the ultrastructure of the neurons and their synapses in the cephalic ganglion of a poorly known invertebrate, the velvet worm Peripatus sedgwicki, from the mountainous region of El Valle, Mérida, Venezuela. Cephalic ganglia were dissected, fixed and processed for transmission electron microscopy. The animal has a high degree of neurobiological development, as evidenced by the presence of asymmetric (excitatory) and symmetric (inhibitory) synapses, as well as the existence of glial cell processes in a wide neuropile zone. The postsynaptic terminals were seen to contain subsynaptic cisterns formed by membranes of smooth endoplasmic reticulum beneath the postsynaptic density, whereas the presynaptic terminal showed numerous electron transparent synaptic vesicles. From the neurophylogenetic perspectives, the ultrastructural characteristics of the central nervous tissue of the Onychophora show important evolutionary acquirements, such as the presence of both excitatory and inhibitory synapses, indicating functional synaptic transmission, and the appearance of mature glial cells. PMID:18457135

  5. Molecular Mechanisms of Synaptic Specificity

    PubMed Central

    Margeta, Milica A.; Shen, Kang

    2011-01-01

    Synapses are specialized junctions that mediate information flow between neurons and their targets. A striking feature of the nervous system is the specificity of its synaptic connections: an individual neuron will form synapses only with a small subset of available presynaptic and postsynaptic partners. Synaptic specificity has been classically thought to arise from homophilic or heterophilic interactions between adhesive molecules acting across the synaptic cleft. Over the past decade, many new mechanisms giving rise to synaptic specificity have been identified. Synapses can be specified by secreted molecules that promote or inhibit synaptogenesis, and their source can be a neighboring guidepost cell, not just presynaptic and postsynaptic neurons. Furthermore, lineage, fate, and timing of development can also play critical roles in shaping neural circuits. Future work utilizing large-scale screens will aim to elucidate the full scope of cellular mechanisms and molecular players that can give rise to synaptic specificity. PMID:19969086

  6. Characterization of auditory synaptic inputs to gerbil perirhinal cortex

    PubMed Central

    Kotak, Vibhakar C.; Mowery, Todd M.; Sanes, Dan H.

    2015-01-01

    The representation of acoustic cues involves regions downstream from the auditory cortex (ACx). One such area, the perirhinal cortex (PRh), processes sensory signals containing mnemonic information. Therefore, our goal was to assess whether PRh receives auditory inputs from the auditory thalamus (MG) and ACx in an auditory thalamocortical brain slice preparation and characterize these afferent-driven synaptic properties. When the MG or ACx was electrically stimulated, synaptic responses were recorded from the PRh neurons. Blockade of type A gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA-A) receptors dramatically increased the amplitude of evoked excitatory potentials. Stimulation of the MG or ACx also evoked calcium transients in most PRh neurons. Separately, when fluoro ruby was injected in ACx in vivo, anterogradely labeled axons and terminals were observed in the PRh. Collectively, these data show that the PRh integrates auditory information from the MG and ACx and that auditory driven inhibition dominates the postsynaptic responses in a non-sensory cortical region downstream from the ACx. PMID:26321918

  7. Retinal waves regulate afferent terminal targeting in the early visual pathway.

    PubMed

    Failor, Samuel; Chapman, Barbara; Cheng, Hwai-Jong

    2015-06-01

    Current models of retinogeniculate development have proposed that connectivity between the retina and the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) is established by gradients of axon guidance molecules, to allow initial coarse connections, and by competitive Hebbian-like processes, to drive eye-specific segregation and refine retinotopy. Here we show that when intereye competition is eliminated by monocular enucleation, blocking cholinergic stage II retinal waves disrupts the intraeye competition-mediated expansion of the retinogeniculate projection and results in the permanent disorganization of its laminae. This disruption of stage II retinal waves also causes long-term impacts on receptive field size and fine-scale retinotopy in the dLGN. Our results reveal a novel role for stage II retinal waves in regulating retinogeniculate afferent terminal targeting by way of intraeye competition, allowing for correct laminar patterning and the even allocation of synaptic territory. These findings should contribute to answering questions regarding the role of neural activity in guiding the establishment of neural circuits. PMID:26038569

  8. Retinal waves regulate afferent terminal targeting in the early visual pathway

    PubMed Central

    Failor, Samuel; Chapman, Barbara; Cheng, Hwai-Jong

    2015-01-01

    Current models of retinogeniculate development have proposed that connectivity between the retina and the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) is established by gradients of axon guidance molecules, to allow initial coarse connections, and by competitive Hebbian-like processes, to drive eye-specific segregation and refine retinotopy. Here we show that when intereye competition is eliminated by monocular enucleation, blocking cholinergic stage II retinal waves disrupts the intraeye competition-mediated expansion of the retinogeniculate projection and results in the permanent disorganization of its laminae. This disruption of stage II retinal waves also causes long-term impacts on receptive field size and fine-scale retinotopy in the dLGN. Our results reveal a novel role for stage II retinal waves in regulating retinogeniculate afferent terminal targeting by way of intraeye competition, allowing for correct laminar patterning and the even allocation of synaptic territory. These findings should contribute to answering questions regarding the role of neural activity in guiding the establishment of neural circuits. PMID:26038569

  9. Overlapping Role of Dynamin Isoforms in Synaptic Vesicle Endocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Raimondi, Andrea; Ferguson, Shawn M.; Lou, Xuelin; Armbruster, Moritz; Paradise, Summer; Giovedi, Silvia; Messa, Mirko; Kono, Nao; Takasaki, Junko; Cappello, Valentina; O’Toole, Eileen; Ryan, Timothy A.; De Camilli, Pietro

    2011-01-01

    The existence of neuron specific endocytic protein isoforms raises questions about their importance for specialized neuronal functions. Dynamin, a GTPase implicated in the fission reaction of endocytosis, is encoded by three genes, two of which, dynamin 1 and 3, are highly expressed in neurons. We show that dynamin 3, thought to play a predominantly postsynaptic role, has a major presynaptic function. While lack of dynamin 3 does not produce an overt phenotype in mice, it worsens the dynamin 1 KO phenotype, leading to perinatal lethality and a more severe defect in activity-dependent synaptic vesicle endocytosis. Thus, dynamin 1 and 3, which together account for the overwhelming majority of brain dynamin, cooperate in supporting optimal rates of synaptic vesicle endocytosis. Persistence of synaptic transmission in their absence indicates that if dynamin plays essential functions in neurons, such functions can be achieved by the very low levels of dynamin 2. PMID:21689597

  10. Synaptic plasticity in the auditory system: a review.

    PubMed

    Friauf, Eckhard; Fischer, Alexander U; Fuhr, Martin F

    2015-07-01

    Synaptic transmission via chemical synapses is dynamic, i.e., the strength of postsynaptic responses may change considerably in response to repeated synaptic activation. Synaptic strength is increased during facilitation, augmentation and potentiation, whereas a decrease in synaptic strength is characteristic for depression and attenuation. This review attempts to discuss the literature on short-term and long-term synaptic plasticity in the auditory brainstem of mammals and birds. One hallmark of the auditory system, particularly the inner ear and lower brainstem stations, is information transfer through neurons that fire action potentials at very high frequency, thereby activating synapses >500 times per second. Some auditory synapses display morphological specializations of the presynaptic terminals, e.g., calyceal extensions, whereas other auditory synapses do not. The review focuses on short-term depression and short-term facilitation, i.e., plastic changes with durations in the millisecond range. Other types of short-term synaptic plasticity, e.g., posttetanic potentiation and depolarization-induced suppression of excitation, will be discussed much more briefly. The same holds true for subtypes of long-term plasticity, like prolonged depolarizations and spike-time-dependent plasticity. We also address forms of plasticity in the auditory brainstem that do not comprise synaptic plasticity in a strict sense, namely short-term suppression, paired tone facilitation, short-term adaptation, synaptic adaptation and neural adaptation. Finally, we perform a meta-analysis of 61 studies in which short-term depression (STD) in the auditory system is opposed to short-term depression at non-auditory synapses in order to compare high-frequency neurons with those that fire action potentials at a lower rate. This meta-analysis reveals considerably less STD in most auditory synapses than in non-auditory ones, enabling reliable, failure-free synaptic transmission even at frequencies >100 Hz. Surprisingly, the calyx of Held, arguably the best-investigated synapse in the central nervous system, depresses most robustly. It will be exciting to reveal the molecular mechanisms that set high-fidelity synapses apart from other synapses that function much less reliably. PMID:25896885

  11. Miniature EPSPs and sensory encoding in the primary afferents of the vestibular lagena of the toadfish, Opsanus tau

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Locke, R.; Vautrin, J.; Highstein, S.

    1999-01-01

    The synaptic activity transmitted from vestibular hair cells of the lagena to primary afferent neurons was recorded in vitro using sharp, intracellular microelectrodes. At rest, the activity was composed of miniature excitatory postsynaptic potentials (mEPSPs) at frequencies from 5 to 20/s and action potentials (APs) at frequencies betwen 0 and 10/s. mEPSPs recorded from a single fiber displayed a large variability. For mEPSPs not triggering APs, amplitudes exhibited an average coefficient of variance (CV) of 0.323 and rise times an average CV of 0.516. APs were only triggered by mEPSPs with larger amplitudes (estimated 4-6 mV) and/or steeper maximum rate of rise (10.9 mV/ms, +/- 3.7 SD, n=4 experiments) compared to (3.50 mV/ms, +/-0.07 SD, n=6 experiments) for nontriggering mEPSPs. The smallest mEPSPs showed a fast rise time (0.99 ms between 10% and 90% of peak amplitude) and limited variability across fibers (CV:0.18) confirming that they were not attenuated signals, but rather represented single-transmitter discharges (TDs). The mEPSP amplitude and rise-time relationship suggests that many mEPSPs represented several, rather than a single pulse of secretion of TDs. According to the estimated overall TD frequency, the coincidence of TDs contributing to the same mEPSP were not statistically independent, indicating a positive interaction between TDs that is reminiscent of the way subminiature signals group to form miniature signals at the neuromuscular junction. Depending on the duration and intensity of efferent stimulation, a complete block of AP initiation occurred either immediately or after a delay of a few seconds. Efferent stimulation did not significantly change AP threshold level, but abruptly decreased mEPSP frequency to a near-complete block that followed the block of APs. Maximum mEPSP rate of rise decreased during, and recovered progressively after, efferent stimulation. After termination of efferent stimulation, mEPSP amplitude did not recover instantly and for a few seconds the amplitude distribution of synaptic events showed fewer large-amplitude events than during the control period. This confirms that mEPSP amplitude and rate of rise properties, which are critical for triggering afferent APs, are modified by efferent activity. The depression of afferent AP firing during efferent stimulation corresponded to a decrease in mEPSP frequency and, to a lesser extent, a decrease in mEPSP amplitude and rate of rise, suggesting, a decrease in the level of interaction among TDs contibuting to a mEPSP.

  12. Reorganization of Learning-Associated Prefrontal Synaptic Plasticity between the Recall of Recent and Remote Fear Extinction Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hugues, Sandrine; Garcia, Rene

    2007-01-01

    We have previously shown that fear extinction is accompanied by an increase of synaptic efficacy in inputs from the ventral hippocampus (vHPC) and mediodorsal thalamus (MD) to the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and that disrupting these changes to mPFC synaptic transmission compromises extinction processes. The aim of this study was to examine…

  13. Hardwiring of fine synaptic layers in the zebrafish visual pathway

    PubMed Central

    Nevin, Linda M; Taylor, Michael R; Baier, Herwig

    2008-01-01

    Background Neuronal connections are often arranged in layers, which are divided into sublaminae harboring synapses with similar response properties. It is still debated how fine-grained synaptic layering is established during development. Here we investigated two stratified areas of the zebrafish visual pathway, the inner plexiform layer (IPL) of the retina and the neuropil of the optic tectum, and determined if activity is required for their organization. Results The IPL of 5-day-old zebrafish larvae is composed of at least nine sublaminae, comprising the connections between different types of amacrine, bipolar, and ganglion cells (ACs, BCs, GCs). These sublaminae were distinguished by their expression of cell type-specific transgenic fluorescent reporters and immunohistochemical markers, including protein kinase C? (PKC), parvalbumin (Parv), zrf3, and choline acetyltransferase (ChAT). In the tectum, four retinal input layers abut a laminated array of neurites of tectal cells, which differentially express PKC and Parv. We investigated whether these patterns were affected by experimental disruptions of retinal activity in developing fish. Neither elimination of light inputs by dark rearing, nor a D, L-amino-phosphono-butyrate-induced reduction in the retinal response to light onset (but not offset) altered IPL or tectal lamination. Moreover, thorough elimination of chemical synaptic transmission with Botulinum toxin B left laminar synaptic arrays intact. Conclusion Our results call into question a role for activity-dependent mechanisms – instructive light signals, balanced on and off BC activity, Hebbian plasticity, or a permissive role for synaptic transmission – in the synaptic stratification we examined. We propose that genetically encoded cues are sufficient to target groups of neurites to synaptic layers in this vertebrate visual system. PMID:19087349

  14. Changes in monkey horizontal semicircular canal afferent responses after spaceflight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Correia, M. J.; Perachio, A. A.; Dickman, J. D.; Kozlovskaia, I. B.; Sirota, M. G.; Iakushin, S. B.; Beloozerova, I. N.

    1992-01-01

    Extracellular responses from single horizontal semicircular canal afferents in two rhesus monkeys were studied after recovery from a 14-day biosatellite (Cosmos 2044) orbital spaceflight. On the 1st postflight day, the mean gain for 9 different horizontal canal afferents, tested using one or several different passive yaw rotation waveforms, was nearly twice that for 20 horizontal canal afferents similarly tested during preflight and postflight control studies. Adaptation of the afferent response to passive yaw rotation on the 1st postflight day was also greater. These results suggest that at least one component of the vestibular end organ (the semicircular canals) is transiently modified after exposure to 14 days of microgravity. It is unclear whether the changes are secondary to other effects of microgravity, such as calcium loss, or an adaptive response. If the response is adaptive, then this report is the first evidence that the response of the vestibular end organ may be modified (presumably by the central nervous system via efferent connections) after prolonged unusual vestibular stimulation. If this is the case, the sites of plasticity of vestibular responses may not be exclusively within central nervous system vestibular structures, as previously believed.

  15. Monosynaptic convergence of chorda tympani and glossopharyngeal afferents onto ascending relay neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract: A high-resolution confocal and correlative electron microscopy approach

    PubMed Central

    Corson, James A.; Erisir, Alev

    2014-01-01

    While physiological studies suggested convergence of chorda tympani and glossopharyngeal afferent axons onto single neurons of the rostral nucleus of the solitary tract (rNTS), anatomical evidence has been elusive. The current study uses high-magnification confocal microscopy to identify putative synaptic contacts from afferent fibers of the two nerves onto individual projection neurons. Imaged tissue is re-visualized with electron microscopy, confirming that overlapping fluorescent signals in confocal z-stacks accurately identify appositions between labeled terminal and dendrite pairs. Monte Carlo modeling reveals that the probability of overlapping fluorophores is stochastically unrelated to the density of afferent label suggesting that convergent innervation in the rNTS is selective rather than opportunistic. Putative synaptic contacts from each nerve are often compartmentalized onto dendrite segments of convergently innervated neurons. These results have important implications for orosensory processing in the rNTS, and the techniques presented here have applications in investigations of neural microcircuitry with an emphasis on innervation patterning. PMID:23640852

  16. Synaptic contacts impaired by styrene-7,8-oxide toxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Corsi, P. D'Aprile, A.; Nico, B.; Costa, G.L.; Assennato, G.

    2007-10-01

    Styrene-7,8-oxide (SO), a chemical compound widely used in industrial applications, is a potential hazard for humans, particularly in occupational settings. Neurobehavioral changes are consistently observed in occupationally exposed individuals and alterations of neurotransmitters associated with neuronal loss have been reported in animal models. Although the toxic effects of styrene have been extensively documented, the molecular mechanisms responsible for SO-induced neurotoxicity are still unclear. A possible dopamine-mediated effect of styrene neurotoxicity has been previously demonstrated, since styrene oxide alters dopamine neurotransmission in the brain. Thus, the present study hypothesizes that styrene neurotoxicity may involve synaptic contacts. Primary striatal neurons were exposed to styrene oxide at different concentrations (0.1-1 mM) for different time periods (8, 16, and 24 h) to evaluate the dose able to induce synaptic impairments. The expression of proteins crucial for synaptic transmission such as Synapsin, Synaptophysin, and RAC-1 were considered. The levels of Synaptophysin and RAC-1 decreased in a dose-dependent manner. Accordingly, morphological alterations, observed at the ultrastructural level, primarily involved the pre-synaptic compartment. In SO-exposed cultures, the biochemical cascade of caspases was activated affecting the cytoskeleton components as their target. Thus the impairments in synaptic contacts observed in SO-exposed cultures might reflect a primarily morphological alteration of neuronal cytoskeleton. In addition, our data support the hypothesis developed by previous authors of reactive oxygen species (ROS) initiating events of SO cytotoxicity.

  17. Energy Efficient Sparse Connectivity from Imbalanced Synaptic Plasticity Rules

    PubMed Central

    Sacramento, João; Wichert, Andreas; van Rossum, Mark C. W.

    2015-01-01

    It is believed that energy efficiency is an important constraint in brain evolution. As synaptic transmission dominates energy consumption, energy can be saved by ensuring that only a few synapses are active. It is therefore likely that the formation of sparse codes and sparse connectivity are fundamental objectives of synaptic plasticity. In this work we study how sparse connectivity can result from a synaptic learning rule of excitatory synapses. Information is maximised when potentiation and depression are balanced according to the mean presynaptic activity level and the resulting fraction of zero-weight synapses is around 50%. However, an imbalance towards depression increases the fraction of zero-weight synapses without significantly affecting performance. We show that imbalanced plasticity corresponds to imposing a regularising constraint on the L1-norm of the synaptic weight vector, a procedure that is well-known to induce sparseness. Imbalanced plasticity is biophysically plausible and leads to more efficient synaptic configurations than a previously suggested approach that prunes synapses after learning. Our framework gives a novel interpretation to the high fraction of silent synapses found in brain regions like the cerebellum. PMID:26046817

  18. Ion channels in synaptic vesicles from Torpedo electric organ.

    PubMed Central

    Rahamimoff, R; DeRiemer, S A; Sakmann, B; Stadler, H; Yakir, N

    1988-01-01

    A simple method has been developed for fusing synaptic vesicles into spherical structures 20-50 micron in diameter. The method has been applied to purified cholinergic synaptic vesicles from Torpedo electric organ, and the membrane properties of these fused structures have been studied by the "cell"-attached version of the patch clamp technique. A large conductance potassium-preferring channel, termed the P channel, was consistently observed in preparations of fused synaptic vesicles. The selectivity of the channel for potassium over sodium was approximately equal to 2.8-fold. Two major conductance levels were observed during P-channel activity, and their relative proportion was dependent on the voltage applied to the membrane through the patch pipette. P channels were not seen in fused preparations of purified Torpedo lipids, nor was the frequency of their occurrence increased in preparations enriched with plasma membrane or nonvesicular membranes. We suggest, therefore, that the P channels are components of the synaptic vesicle membrane. Their function in synaptic transmission physiology is still unknown. Images PMID:2455900

  19. A network of autism linked genes stabilizes two pools of synaptic GABAA receptors.

    PubMed

    Tong, Xia-Jing; Hu, Zhitao; Liu, Yu; Anderson, Dorian; Kaplan, Joshua M

    2015-01-01

    Changing receptor abundance at synapses is an important mechanism for regulating synaptic strength. Synapses contain two pools of receptors, immobilized and diffusing receptors, both of which are confined to post-synaptic elements. Here we show that immobile and diffusing GABAA receptors are stabilized by distinct synaptic scaffolds at C. elegans neuromuscular junctions. Immobilized GABAA receptors are stabilized by binding to FRM-3/EPB4.1 and LIN-2A/CASK. Diffusing GABAA receptors are stabilized by the synaptic adhesion molecules Neurexin and Neuroligin. Inhibitory post-synaptic currents are eliminated in double mutants lacking both scaffolds. Neurexin, Neuroligin, and CASK mutations are all linked to Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Our results suggest that these mutations may directly alter inhibitory transmission, which could contribute to the developmental and cognitive deficits observed in ASD. PMID:26575289

  20. A network of autism linked genes stabilizes two pools of synaptic GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Tong, Xia-Jing; Hu, Zhitao; Liu, Yu; Anderson, Dorian; Kaplan, Joshua M

    2015-01-01

    Changing receptor abundance at synapses is an important mechanism for regulating synaptic strength. Synapses contain two pools of receptors, immobilized and diffusing receptors, both of which are confined to post-synaptic elements. Here we show that immobile and diffusing GABAA receptors are stabilized by distinct synaptic scaffolds at C. elegans neuromuscular junctions. Immobilized GABAA receptors are stabilized by binding to FRM-3/EPB4.1 and LIN-2A/CASK. Diffusing GABAA receptors are stabilized by the synaptic adhesion molecules Neurexin and Neuroligin. Inhibitory post-synaptic currents are eliminated in double mutants lacking both scaffolds. Neurexin, Neuroligin, and CASK mutations are all linked to Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Our results suggest that these mutations may directly alter inhibitory transmission, which could contribute to the developmental and cognitive deficits observed in ASD. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09648.001 PMID:26575289

  1. Cortical and subcortical plasticity in the brains of humans, primates, and rats after damage to sensory afferents in the dorsal columns of the spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Kaas, Jon H.; Qi, Hui-Xin; Burish, Mark; Gharbawie, Omar; Onifer, Stephen M.; Massey, James M.

    2008-01-01

    The failure of injured axons to regenerate following spinal cord injury deprives brain neurons of their normal sources of activation. These injuries also result in the reorganization of affected areas of the central nervous system that is thought to drive both the ensuing recovery of function and the formation of maladaptive neuronal circuitry. Better understanding of the physiological consequences of novel synaptic connections produced by injury and the mechanisms that control their formation are important to the development of new successful strategies for the treatment of patients with spinal cord injuries. Here we discuss the anatomical, physiological and behavioral changes that take place in response to injury-induced plasticity after damage to the dorsal column pathway in rats and monkeys. Complete section of the dorsal columns of the spinal cord at a high cervical level in monkeys and rats interrupts the ascending axon branches of low threshold mechanoreceptor afferents subserving the forelimb and the rest of the lower body. Such lesions render the corresponding part of the somatotopic representation of primary somatosensory cortex totally unresponsive to tactile stimuli. There are also behavioral consequences of the sensory loss, including an impaired use of the hand/forelimb in manipulating small objects. In monkeys, if some of the afferents from the hand remain intact after dorsal column lesions, these remaining afferents extensively reactivate portions of somatosensory cortex formerly representing the hand. This functional reorganization develops over a postoperative period of one month, during which hand use rapidly improves. These recoveries appear to be mediated, at least in part, by the sprouting of preserved afferents within the cuneate nucleus of the dorsal column-trigeminal complex. In rats, such functional collateral sprouting has been promoted by the post-lesion digestion of the perineuronal net in the cuneate nucleus. Thus, this and other therapeutic strategies have the potential of enhancing sensorimotor recoveries after spinal cord injuries in humans. PMID:17692844

  2. A unifying theory of synaptic long-term plasticity based on a sparse distribution of synaptic strength

    PubMed Central

    Krieg, Daniel; Triesch, Jochen

    2014-01-01

    Long-term synaptic plasticity is fundamental to learning and network function. It has been studied under various induction protocols and depends on firing rates, membrane voltage, and precise timing of action potentials. These protocols show different facets of a common underlying mechanism but they are mostly modeled as distinct phenomena. Here, we show that all of these different dependencies can be explained from a single computational principle. The objective is a sparse distribution of excitatory synaptic strength, which may help to reduce metabolic costs associated with synaptic transmission. Based on this objective we derive a stochastic gradient ascent learning rule which is of differential-Hebbian type. It is formulated in biophysical quantities and can be related to current mechanistic theories of synaptic plasticity. The learning rule accounts for experimental findings from all major induction protocols and explains a classic phenomenon of metaplasticity. Furthermore, our model predicts the existence of metaplasticity for spike-timing-dependent plasticity Thus, we provide a theory of long-term synaptic plasticity that unifies different induction protocols and provides a connection between functional and mechanistic levels of description. PMID:24624080

  3. Role for a Novel Usher Protein Complex in Hair Cell Synaptic Maturation

    PubMed Central

    Zallocchi, Marisa; Meehan, Daniel T.; Delimont, Duane; Rutledge, Joseph; Gratton, Michael Anne; Flannery, John; Cosgrove, Dominic

    2012-01-01

    The molecular mechanisms underlying hair cell synaptic maturation are not well understood. Cadherin-23 (CDH23), protocadherin-15 (PCDH15) and the very large G-protein coupled receptor 1 (VLGR1) have been implicated in the development of cochlear hair cell stereocilia, while clarin-1 has been suggested to also play a role in synaptogenesis. Mutations in CDH23, PCDH15, VLGR1 and clarin-1 cause Usher syndrome, characterized by congenital deafness, vestibular dysfunction and retinitis pigmentosa. Here we show developmental expression of these Usher proteins in afferent spiral ganglion neurons and hair cell synapses. We identify a novel synaptic Usher complex comprised of clarin-1 and specific isoforms of CDH23, PCDH15 and VLGR1. To establish the in vivo relevance of this complex, we performed morphological and quantitative analysis of the neuronal fibers and their synapses in the Clrn1?/? mouse, which was generated by incomplete deletion of the gene. These mice showed a delay in neuronal/synaptic maturation by both immunostaining and electron microscopy. Analysis of the ribbon synapses in Ames waltzerav3J mice also suggests a delay in hair cell synaptogenesis. Collectively, these results show that, in addition to the well documented role for Usher proteins in stereocilia development, Usher protein complexes comprised of specific protein isoforms likely function in synaptic maturation as well. PMID:22363448

  4. Sensory cells determine afferent terminal morphology in cross-innervated electroreceptor organs: implications for hair cells.

    PubMed

    Zakon, H; Lu, Y; Weisleder, P

    1998-04-01

    Type I and type II hair cells of the vestibular system are innervated by afferents that form calyceal and bouton terminals, respectively. These cannot be experimentally cross-innervated in the inner ear to determine how they influence each other. However, analogous organs are accessible for transplantation and cross-innervation in the brown ghost electric fish. These fish possess three types of electroreceptor organs. Of these, the sensory receptors of the type I tuberous organ are S-100- and parvalbumin-positive with a calbindin-positive afferent that forms a large calyx around the organ. Neither the sensory receptors nor the afferents of the ampullary organs label with these antibodies, and the afferent branches form a single large bouton beneath each receptor cell. In controls, when cut ampullary afferents reinnervate transplanted ampullary organs, they have characteristic calbindin-negative terminals with large boutons. When type I tuberous afferents reinnervate ampullary organs, receptor cells remain S-100- and parvalbumin-negative, and the tuberous afferents still express calbindin. The nerve terminals, however, make large ampullary-like boutons on the receptor cells. These results suggest that (1) afferent terminal morphology is dictated by the receptor organ; (2) expression of calbindin by the afferent is not suppressed by innervation of the incorrect end organ; (3) ampullary organs generate ampullary receptor cells although innervated by tuberous afferents; and (4) ampullary receptor cells can be trophically supported by tuberous afferents. PMID:9502817

  5. Vagal Afferent Innervation of the Proximal Gastrointestinal Tract Mucosa: Chemoreceptor and Mechanoreceptor Architecture

    PubMed Central

    Powley, Terry L.; Spaulding, Ryan A.; Haglof, Stanley A.

    2014-01-01

    The vagus nerve supplies low-threshold chemo- and mechanosensitive afferents to the mucosa of the proximal gastrointestinal (GI) tract. The absence of a full characterization of the morphology and distributions of these projections has hampered comprehensive functional analyses. In the present experiment, dextran (10K) conjugated with tetramethylrhodamine and biotin was injected into the nodose ganglion and used to label the terminal arbors of individual vagal afferents of both rats and mice. Series of serial 100-µm thick sections of the initial segment of the duodenum as well as the pyloric antrum were collected and processed with diaminobenzidine for permanent tracer labeling. Examination of over 400 isolated afferent fibers, more than 200 from each species, indicated that three vagal afferent specializations, each distinct in morphology and in targets, innervate the mucosa of the proximal GI tract. One population of fibers, the villus afferents, supplies plates of varicose endings to the apical tips of intestinal villi, immediately subjacent to the epithelial wall. A second type of afferent, the crypt afferent, forms subepithelial rings of varicose processes encircling the intestinal glands or crypts, immediately below the cryptvillus junction. Statistical assessment of the isolated fibers indicated that the villus arbors and the crypt endings are independent, issued by different vagal afferents. A third vagal afferent specialization, the antral gland afferent, arborizes along the gastric antral glands and forms terminal concentrations immediately below the luminal epithelial wall. The terminal locations, morphological features, and regional distributions of these three specializations provide inferences about the sensitivities of the afferents. PMID:21246548

  6. NMDA receptor phosphorylation at a site affected in schizophrenia controls synaptic and behavioral plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Li, Bo; Devidze, Nino; Barengolts, Denis; Prostak, Naseem; Sphicas, Eleana; Apicella, Alfonso; Malinow, Roberto; Emamian, Effat S.

    2009-01-01

    Phosphorylation of the NR1 subunit of NMDA receptors (NMDAR) at serine (S) 897 is markedly reduced in schizophrenia patients. However, the role of NR1 S897 phosphorylation in normal synaptic function and adaptive behaviors are unknown. To address these questions we generated mice in which the NR1 S897 is replaced with alanine (A). This knock-in mutation causes severe impairment in NMDAR synaptic incorporation and NMDAR-mediated synaptic transmission. Furthermore, the phosphomutant animals have reduced AMPA receptor (AMPAR)-mediated synaptic transmission, decreased AMPAR GluR1 subunit in the synapse, and impaired long-term potentiation (LTP). Finally, the mutant mice exhibit behavioral deficits in social interaction and sensorimotor gating. Our results suggest that an impairment in NR1 phosphorylation leads to glutamatergic hypofunction that can contribute to behavioral deficits associated with psychiatric disorders. PMID:19776282

  7. Memory stability and synaptic plasticity 

    E-print Network

    Billings, Guy

    2009-01-01

    Numerous experiments have demonstrated that the activity of neurons can alter the strength of excitatory synapses. This synaptic plasticity is bidirectional and synapses can be strengthened (potentiation) or weakened ...

  8. LPHN3, a presynaptic adhesion-GPCR implicated in ADHD, regulates the strength of neocortical layer 2/3 synaptic input to layer 5

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Latrophilins (LPHNs) are a small family of neuronal adhesion-GPCRs originally discovered as receptors for the black widow spider toxin ?-latrotoxin. Mutations in LPHN3 have recently been identified as risk factors for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in humans, but their physiological function has remained elusive. In this study, we tested two hypotheses regarding LPHN3 function: (1) LPHN3 regulates synaptic transmission by modulating probability of release; and (2) LPHN3 controls synapse development and the abundance of synapses. Results We manipulated LPHN3 expression in mouse layer 2/3 (L2/3) pyramidal neurons and examined the consequences on the L2/3 to L5 cortical microcircuit. Employing an optogenetic strategy combined with shRNA knockdown of LPHN3, we found that LPHN3 did not influence probability of release at synapses formed by L2/3 neurons onto L5 pyramidal cells. The strength of L2/3 afferent input to L5, however, was weakened by loss of LPHN3. Using Synaptophysin-GFP as an anatomical marker of presynaptic terminals, we found that the density of synapses formed by L2/3 axons in L5 was reduced when LPHN3 was lost. Finally, we investigated the structural organization of the extracellular domain of LPHN3. We used single particle negative stain electron microscopy to image the extracellular domain of LPHN3 and showed that the Olfactomedin and Lectin domains form a globular domain on an elongated stalk. Cell-based binding experiments with mutant proteins revealed that the Olfactomedin domain was required for binding to FLRT3, whereas both the Olfactomedin and Lectin domains were involved in binding to Teneurin 1. Mutant LPHN3 lacking the Olfactomedin domain was not capable of rescuing the deficit in presynaptic density following knockdown of endogenous LPHN3. Conclusions We find that LPHN3 regulates the number of synapses formed by L2/3 neurons in L5 and the strength of synaptic drive from the L2/3-L5 pathway. The Olfactomedin domain of LPHN3 is required for this effect on synapse number and binding to its postsynaptic ligand FLRT3. We propose that LPHN3 functions in synaptic development and is important in determining the connectivity rates between principal neurons in the cortex. PMID:24739570

  9. Loss of the Synaptic Vesicle Protein SV2B Results in Reduced Neurotransmission and Altered Synaptic Vesicle Protein Expression in the Retina

    PubMed Central

    Burton, Kimberly; Idzerda, Rejean; McKnight, G. Stanley; Bajjalieh, Sandra M.

    2009-01-01

    The Synaptic Vesicle Protein 2 (SV2) family of transporter-like proteins is expressed exclusively in vesicles that undergo calcium-regulated exocytosis. Of the three isoforms expressed in mammals, SV2B is the most divergent. Here we report studies of SV2B location and function in the retina. Immunolabeling studies revealed that SV2B is detected in rod photoreceptor synaptic terminals where it is the primary isoform. In mice lacking SV2B, synaptic transmission at the synapse between photoreceptors and bipolar neurons was decreased, as evidenced by a significant reduction in the amplitude of the b-wave in electroretinogram recordings. Quantitative immunoblot analyses of whole eyes revealed that loss of SV2B was associated with reduced levels of synaptic vesicle proteins including synaptotagmin, VAMP, synaptophysin and the vesicular glutamate transporter V-GLUT1. Immunolabeling studies revealed that SV2B is detected in rod photoreceptor synaptic terminals where it is the primary isoform. Thus, SV2B contributes to the modulation of synaptic vesicle exocytosis and plays a significant role in regulating synaptic protein content. PMID:19381277

  10. Depression of synaptic efficacy at intermolt in crayfish neuromuscular junctions by 20-hydroxyecdysone, a molting hormone.

    PubMed

    Cooper, R L; Ruffner, M E

    1998-04-01

    This report demonstrates that ecdysteroids can reduce synaptic transmission at an intermolt stage of a crustacean tonic neuromuscular junction by acting at a presynaptic site. The steroid molting hormone, 20-hydroxyecdysone (20-HE), appears to act through a rapid, nongenomic mechanism that decreases the probability of synaptic vesicle release and reduces the number of release sites. Quantal analysis revealed that fewer vesicles were released for a given stimulus when 20-HE was present, and this in turn accounted for the reduced synaptic efficacy. Reduced synaptic efficacy produced smaller evoked postsynaptic currents and smaller excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) across the muscle fiber membrane. The reduction in EPSPs was observed among muscle fibers that were innervated by high- or low-output terminals. The behavior of crustaceans/crayfish during the molt cycle, when 20-HE is high, may be explained by the reduction in synaptic transmission. Crustaceans become quiescent during the premolt periods as do insects. The effects of 20-HE can be reversed with the application of the crustacean neuromodulator serotonin, which enhances synaptic transmission. PMID:9535959

  11. Trans-Synaptic Signaling by Activity-Dependent Cleavage of Neuroligin-1

    PubMed Central

    Peixoto, Rui; Kunz, Portia A.; Kwon, Hyungbae; Mabb, Angela M.; Sabatini, Bernardo L.; Philpot, Benjamin D.; Ehlers, Michael D.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Adhesive contact between pre- and postsynaptic neurons initiates synapse formation during brain development and provides a natural means of trans-synaptic signaling. Numerous adhesion molecules and their role during synapse development have been described in detail. However, once established, the mechanisms of adhesive disassembly and its function in regulating synaptic transmission have been unclear. Here, we report that synaptic activity induces acute proteolytic cleavage of neuroligin-1 (NLG1), a postsynaptic adhesion molecule at glutamatergic synapses. NLG1 cleavage is triggered by NMDA receptor activation, requires Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase, and is mediated by proteolytic activity of matrix metalloprotease 9 (MMP9). Cleavage of NLG1 occurs at single activated spines, is regulated by neural activity in vivo, and causes rapid destabilization of its presynaptic partner neurexin-1? (NRX1?). In turn, NLG1 cleavage depresses synaptic transmission by abruptly reducing presynaptic release probability. Thus, local proteolytic control of synaptic adhesion tunes synaptic transmission during brain development and plasticity. PMID:23083741

  12. Cortical Synaptic Inhibition Declines during Auditory Learning.

    PubMed

    Sarro, Emma C; von Trapp, Gardiner; Mowery, Todd M; Kotak, Vibhakar C; Sanes, Dan H

    2015-04-22

    Auditory learning is associated with an enhanced representation of acoustic cues in primary auditory cortex, and modulation of inhibitory strength is causally involved in learning. If this inhibitory plasticity is associated with task learning and improvement, its expression should emerge and persist until task proficiency is achieved. We tested this idea by measuring changes to cortical inhibitory synaptic transmission as adult gerbils progressed through the process of associative learning and perceptual improvement. Using either of two procedures, aversive or appetitive conditioning, animals were trained to detect amplitude-modulated noise and then tested daily. Following each training session, a thalamocortical brain slice was generated, and inhibitory synaptic properties were recorded from layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons. Initial associative learning was accompanied by a profound reduction in the amplitude of spontaneous IPSCs (sIPSCs). However, sIPSC amplitude returned to control levels when animals reached asymptotic behavioral performance. In contrast, paired-pulse ratios decreased in trained animals as well as in control animals that experienced unpaired conditioned and unconditioned stimuli. This latter observation suggests that inhibitory release properties are modified during behavioral conditioning, even when an association between the sound and reinforcement cannot occur. These results suggest that associative learning is accompanied by a reduction of postsynaptic inhibitory strength that persists for several days during learning and perceptual improvement. PMID:25904785

  13. Microsecond-Scale Timing Precision in Rodent Trigeminal Primary Afferents

    PubMed Central

    Bale, Michael R.; Campagner, Dario; Erskine, Andrew

    2015-01-01

    Communication in the nervous system occurs by spikes: the timing precision with which spikes are fired is a fundamental limit on neural information processing. In sensory systems, spike-timing precision is constrained by first-order neurons. We found that spike-timing precision of trigeminal primary afferents in rats and mice is limited both by stimulus speed and by electrophysiological sampling rate. High-speed video of behaving mice revealed whisker velocities of at least 17,000°/s, so we delivered an ultrafast “ping” (>50,000°/s) to single whiskers and sampled primary afferent activity at 500 kHz. Median spike jitter was 17.4 ?s; 29% of neurons had spike jitter < 10 ?s. These results indicate that the input stage of the trigeminal pathway has extraordinary spike-timing precision and very high potential information capacity. This timing precision ranks among the highest in biology. PMID:25878266

  14. Altered hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity in mice deficient in the PGE2 EP2 receptor

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Hongwei; Zhang, Jian; Breyer, Richard M.; Chen, Chu

    2008-01-01

    Our laboratory demonstrated previously that PGE2-induced modulation of hippocampal synaptic transmission is via a presynaptic PGE2 EP2 receptor. However, little is known about whether the EP2 receptor is involved in hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity and cognitive function. Here we show that long-term potentiation (LTP) at the hippocampal perforant path synapses was impaired in mice deficient in the EP2 (KO), while membrane excitability and passive properties in granule neurons were normal. Importantly, escape latency in the water maze in EP2 KO was longer than that in age-matched EP2 wild-type littermates (WT). We also observed that LTP was potentiated in EP2 WT animals that received lipopolysaccharide (LPS, i.p.), but not in EP2 KO. Bath application of PGE2 or butaprost, an EP2 receptor agonist, increased synaptic transmission and decreased paired-pulses ratio (PPR) in EP2 WT mice, but failed to induce the changes in EP2 KO mice. Meanwhile, synaptic transmission was elevated by application of forskolin, an adenylyl cyclase activator, both in EP2 KO and WT animals. In addition, the PGE2-enhanced synaptic transmission was significantly attenuated by application of PKA, IP3 or MAPK inhibitors in EP2 WT animals. Our results show that hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity is impaired in mice deficient in the EP2, suggesting that PGE2-EP2 signaling is important for hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity and cognitive function. PMID:19012750

  15. Membrane-Derived Phospholipids Control Synaptic Neurotransmission and Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    García-Morales, Victoria; Montero, Fernando; González-Forero, David; Rodríguez-Bey, Guillermo; Gómez-Pérez, Laura; Medialdea-Wandossell, María Jesús; Domínguez-Vías, Germán; García-Verdugo, José Manuel; Moreno-López, Bernardo

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic communication is a dynamic process that is key to the regulation of neuronal excitability and information processing in the brain. To date, however, the molecular signals controlling synaptic dynamics have been poorly understood. Membrane-derived bioactive phospholipids are potential candidates to control short-term tuning of synaptic signaling, a plastic event essential for information processing at both the cellular and neuronal network levels in the brain. Here, we showed that phospholipids affect excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission by different degrees, loci, and mechanisms of action. Signaling triggered by lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) evoked rapid and reversible depression of excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic currents. At excitatory synapses, LPA-induced depression depended on LPA1/G?i/o-protein/phospholipase C/myosin light chain kinase cascade at the presynaptic site. LPA increased myosin light chain phosphorylation, which is known to trigger actomyosin contraction, and reduced the number of synaptic vesicles docked to active zones in excitatory boutons. At inhibitory synapses, postsynaptic LPA signaling led to dephosphorylation, and internalization of the GABAA?2 subunit through the LPA1/G?12/13-protein/RhoA/Rho kinase/calcineurin pathway. However, LPA-induced depression of GABAergic transmission was correlated with an endocytosis-independent reduction of GABAA receptors, possibly by GABAA?2 dephosphorylation and subsequent increased lateral diffusion. Furthermore, endogenous LPA signaling, mainly via LPA1, mediated activity-dependent inhibitory depression in a model of experimental synaptic plasticity. Finally, LPA signaling, most likely restraining the excitatory drive incoming to motoneurons, regulated performance of motor output commands, a basic brain processing task. We propose that lysophospholipids serve as potential local messengers that tune synaptic strength to precedent activity of the neuron. PMID:25996636

  16. A new pathway from primary afferents to the red nucleus.

    PubMed

    Padel, Y; Bourbonnais, D; Sybirska, E

    1986-02-14

    Evidence is provided that rubrospinal neurons receive feedback information from the periphery via pathways which bypass both the cerebellum and the cerebral cortex. It appears that the primary afferent fibers which ascend in the dorsal columns of the spinal cord give off collaterals via which they activate ascending tracts with axons in the ventral quandrants of the spinal cord. The existence of such pathways indicates that the red nucleus is part of a long feedback loop assisting the ongoing movement. PMID:3960391

  17. Vestibular afferent responses to linear accelerations in the alert squirrel monkey

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Somps, Christopher J.; Schor, Robert H.; Tomko, David L.

    1994-01-01

    The spontaneous activity of 40 otolith afferents and 44 canal afferents was recorded in 4 alert, intact squirrel monkeys. Polarization vectors and response properties of otolith afferents were determined during static re-orientations relative to gravity and during Earth-horizontal, sinusoidal, linear oscillations. Canal afferents were tested for sensitivity to linear accelerations. For regular otolith afferents, a significant correlation between upright discharge rate and sensitivity to dynamic acceleration in the horizontal plane was observed. This correlation was not present in irregular units. The sensitivity of otolith afferents to both static tilts and dynamic linear acceleration was much greater in irregularly discharging units than in regularly discharging units. The spontaneous activity and static and dynamic response properties of regularly discharging otolith afferents were similar to those reported in barbiturate-anesthetized squirrel monkeys. Irregular afferents also had similar dynamic response properties when compared to anesthetized monkeys. However, this sample of irregular afferents in alert animals had higher resting discharge rates and greater sensitivity to static tilts. The majority of otolith polarization vectors were oriented near the horizontal in the plane of the utricular maculae; however, directions of maximum sensitivity were different during dynamic and static testing. Canal afferents were not sensitive to static tilts or linear oscillations of the head.

  18. Ischaemia-sensitive sympathetic afferents innervating the gastrointestinal tract function as nociceptors in cats.

    PubMed Central

    Pan, H L; Longhurst, J C

    1996-01-01

    1. Activation of sympathetic visceral afferents during mesenteric ischaemia induces visceral pain and reflexly excites the cardiovascular system. The present study investigated the differential responses of ischaemically sensitive and insensitive sympathetic C fibre afferents to graded distension of the gastrointestinal tract. 2. Single-unit activity of C fibre afferents innervating the stomach, duodenum and jejunum was recorded from the right thoracic sympathetic chain of anaesthetized cats. Ischaemically sensitive and insensitive C fibre afferents were identified according to their response to 5-20 min of ischaemia. The functional characteristics of the stimulus-response relationships of afferents were determined by distension of a balloon placed in the corresponding segment of gastrointestinal tract. 3. The results show that ischaemically insensitive C fibre afferents had a lower threshold in response to distension (13 +/- 5 mmHg, n = 10). The discharge frequency of these afferents was saturated within a low pressure range of distension. However, ischaemically sensitive C fibre afferents had a high threshold (86 +/- 12 mmHg, n = 10) and a larger peak response to mechanical distension in the noxious range (60-180 mmHg). There were no differences between ischaemically sensitive and insensitive C fibre afferents with regard to their testing activity or responses to bradykinin (10 micrograms I.A.). 4. This study demonstrates that the gastrointestinal system is innervated by low and high threshold sympathetic C fibre afferents, the latter having the distinct ability to encode nociceptive information such as excessive distension and ischaemia. PMID:8734994

  19. Encoding of tangential torque in responses of tactile afferent fibres innervating the fingerpad of the monkey

    PubMed Central

    Birznieks, Ingvars; Wheat, Heather E; Redmond, Stephen J; Salo, Lauren M; Lovell, Nigel H; Goodwin, Antony W

    2010-01-01

    Torsional loads are ubiquitous during everyday dextrous manipulations. We examined how information about torque is provided to the sensorimotor control system by populations of tactile afferents. Torsional loads of different magnitudes were applied in clockwise and anticlockwise directions to a standard central site on the fingertip. Three different background levels of contact (grip) force were used. The median nerve was exposed in anaesthetized monkeys and single unit responses recorded from 66 slowly adapting type-I (SA-I) and 31 fast adapting type-I (FA-I) afferents innervating the distal segments of the fingertips. Most afferents were excited by torque but some were suppressed. Responses of the majority of both afferent types were scaled by torque magnitude applied in one or other direction, with the majority of FA-I afferent responses and about half of SA-I afferent responses scaled in both directions. Torque direction affected responses in both afferent types, but more so for the SA-I afferents. Latencies of the first spike in FA-I afferent responses depended on the parameters of the torque. We used a Parzen window classifier to assess the capacity of the SA-I and FA-I afferent populations to discriminate, concurrently and in real-time, the three stimulus parameters, namely background normal force, torque magnitude and direction. Despite the potentially confounding interactions between stimulus parameters, both the SA-I and the FA-I populations could extract torque magnitude accurately. The FA-I afferents signalled torque magnitude earlier than did the SA-I afferents, but torque direction was extracted more rapidly and more accurately by the SA-I afferent population. PMID:20142274

  20. Neck afferent involvement in cardiovascular control during movement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bolton, P. S.; Ray, C. A.

    2000-01-01

    It is well established that labyrinth and neck afferent information contributes to the regulation of somatomotor function during movement and changes in posture. There is also convincing evidence that the vestibular system participates in the modulation of sympathetic outflow and cardiovascular function during changes in posture, presumably to prevent orthostatic hypotension. However, the labyrinth organs do not provide any signals concerning body movements with respect to the head. In contrast, the neck receptors, particularly muscle spindles, are well located and suited to provide information about changes in body position with respect to the head and vestibular signals. Studies in the cat suggest that neck afferent information may modulate the vestibulosympathetic reflex responses to head-neck movements. There is some evidence in the cat to suggest involvement of low threshold mechanoreceptors. However, human studies do not indicate that low threshold mechanoreceptors in the neck modulate cardiovascular responses. The human studies are consistent with the studies in the cat in that they demonstrate the importance of otolith activation in mediating cardiovascular and sympathetic responses to changes in posture. This paper briefly reviews the current experimental evidence concerning the involvement of neck afferent information in the modulation of cardiovascular control during movement and changes in posture.

  1. Targeting Peripheral Afferent Nerve Terminals for Cough and Dyspnea

    PubMed Central

    Muroi, Yukiko; Undem, Bradley J.

    2011-01-01

    Chronic unproductive coughing and dyspnea are symptoms that severely diminish the quality of life in a substantial proportion of the population. There are presently few if any drugs that effectively treat these symptoms. Rational drug targets for cough and dyspnea have emerged over the recent years based on developments in our understanding of the innervation of the respiratory tract. These drug targets can be subcategorized into those that target the vagal afferent nerve endings, and those that target neural activity within the CNS. This review focuses on targets presumed to be in the peripheral terminals of afferent nerves within the airways. Conceptually, the activity of peripheral afferent nerves involved with unwanted urge-to-cough or dyspnea sensations can be inhibited by limiting the intensity of the stimulus, inhibiting the amplitude of the stimulus-induced generator potential, or inhibiting the transduction between the generator potential and action potential discharge and conduction. These mechanisms reveal many therapeutic strategies for anti-tussive and anti-dyspnea drug development with peripheral sites of action. PMID:21705272

  2. GABA in Paraventricular Nucleus Regulates Adipose Afferent Reflex in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Lei; Gao, Run; Xiong, Xiao-Qing; Gao, Xing-Ya; Chen, Qi; Li, Yue-Hua; Kang, Yu-Ming; Zhu, Guo-Qing

    2015-01-01

    Background Chemical stimulation of white adipose tissue (WAT) induces adipose afferent reflex (AAR), and thereby causes a general sympathetic activation. Paraventricular nucleus (PVN) is important in control of sympathetic outflow. This study was designed to investigate the role of ?-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in PVN in regulating the AAR. Methodology/Principal Findings Experiments were carried out in anesthetized rats. Renal sympathetic nerve activity (RSNA) and mean arterial pressure (MAP) were continuously recorded. AAR was evaluated by the RSNA and MAP responses to electrical stimulation of the right epididymal WAT (eWAT) afferent nerve. Electrical stimulation of eWAT afferent nerve increase RSNA. Bilateral microinjection of the GABAA receptor agonist isoguvacine or the GABAB receptor agonist baclofen attenuated the AAR. The effect of isoguvacine on the AAR was greater than that of baclofen. The GABAA receptor antagonist gabazine enhanced the AAR, while the GABAB receptor antagonist CGP-35348 had no significant effect on the AAR. Bilateral PVN microinjection of vigabatrin, a selective GABA-transaminase inhibitor, to increase endogenous GABA levels in the PVN abolished the AAR. The inhibitory effect of vigabatrin on the AAR was attenuated by the pretreatment with gabazine or CGP-35348. Pretreatment with combined gabazine and CGP-35348 abolished the effects of vigabatrin. Conclusions Activation of GABAA or GABAB receptors in the PVN inhibits the AAR. Blockade of GABAA receptors in the PVN enhances the AAR. Endogenous GABA in the PVN plays an important role in regulating the AAR. PMID:26317425

  3. The afferent innervation of two infrahyoid muscles of the cat

    PubMed Central

    Fernand, V. S. V.

    1970-01-01

    1. The afferent innervation of the straplike muscles of the infrahyoid region were investigated in two ways. The morphology of spindles and counts of tendon organs were investigated by the gold chloride technique in ten muscles. Spindle counts were made in forty pairs of thyrohyoid and infrahyoid muscles. De-efferenting of the nerves to these muscles was done in three cats and the calibre spectra of the afferent innervation investigated. These were compared with the total counts of fibres in intact nerves. 2. In the thyrohyoid, spindles are frequently absent. No tendon organs were seen. In the large infrahyoid (combined sternohyoid and sternothyroid), spindle counts varied from 0 to 20 and the mean spindle count per gram of muscle was 3·5. A maximum of five tendon organs were seen in the muscle. Both spindle and tendon organ counts are low when compared with a limb muscle of similar weight and size. 3. In the infrahyoid muscle complex spindles were about equal in number to simple spindles. 4. Counts of spindles in the infrahyoid muscle in families of three or more siblings suggest that some families of kittens tend to have higher spindle counts than other families. 5. The afferent innervation of the two muscles varied between 21 and 42% of the total fibre population and the fibre diameter spectrum is in keeping with the low counts of encapsulated endings. PMID:5499795

  4. Endothelin-1 induced desensitization in primary afferent neurons

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Terika P.; Smith, Sherika N.; Sweitzer, Sarah M.

    2014-01-01

    Endothelin-1 (ET-1) is a known algogen that causes acute pain and sensitization in humans and spontaneous nociceptive behaviors when injected into the periphery in rats, and is elevated during vaso-occlusive episodes (VOEs) in sickle cell disease (SCD) patients. Previously, our lab has shown that a priming dose of ET-1 produces sensitization to capsaicin-induce secondary hyperalgesia. The goal of this study was to determine if the sensitization induced by ET-1 priming is occurring at the level of the primary afferent neuron. Calcium imaging in cultured dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons was utilized to examine the effects of ET-1 on primary afferent neurons. ET-1 induces [Ca2+]i transients in unprimed cells. ET-1 induced [Ca2+]i transients are attenuated by priming with ET-1. This priming effect occurs whether the priming dose is given 0-4 days prior to the challenge dose. Similarly, ET-1 priming decreases capsaicin-induced [Ca2+]i transients. At the level of the primary afferent neuron, ET-1 priming has a desensitizing effect on challenge exposures to ET-1 and capsaicin. PMID:25220703

  5. Subcortical afferent connections of the amygdala in the monkey

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mehler, W. R.

    1980-01-01

    The cells of origin of the afferent connections of the amygdala in the rhesus and squirrel monkeys are determined according to the retrograde axonal transport of the enzyme horseradish peroxidase injected into various quadrants of the amygdala. Analysis of the distribution of enzyme-labeled cells reveals afferent amygdalar connections with the ipsilateral halves of the midline nucleus paraventricularis thalami and both the parvo- and magnocellular parts of the nucleus subparafascicularis in the dorsal thalamus, all the subdivisions of the midline nucleus centralis complex, the nucleus reuniens ventralis and the nucleus interventralis. The largest populations of enzyme-labeled cells in the hypothalamus are found to lie in the middle and posterior parts of the ipsilateral, lateral hypothalamus and the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus, with scattered cells in the supramammillary and dorsomedial nuclei and the posterior hypothalamic area, Tsai's ventral tegmental area, the rostral and caudal subdivisions of the nucleus linearis in the midbrain and the dorsal raphe nucleus. The most conspicuous subdiencephalic source of amygdalar afferent connections is observed to be the pars lateralis of the nucleus parabrachialis in the dorsolateral pontine tegmentum, with a few labeled cells differentiated from pigmented cells in the locus coeruleus.

  6. Mammalian Vestibular Macular Synaptic Plasticity: Results from SLS-2 Spaceflight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ross, Muriel D.D.

    1994-01-01

    The effects of exposure to microgravity were studied in rat utricular maculas collected inflight (IF, day 13), post-flight on day of orbiter landing (day 14, R+O) and after 14 days (R+ML). Controls were collected at corresponding times. The objectives were 1) to learn whether hair cell ribbon synapses counts would be higher in tissues collected in space than in tissues collected postflight during or after readaptation to Earth's gravity; and 2) to compare results with those of SLS-1. Maculas were fixed by immersion, micro-dissected, dehydrated and prepared for ultrastructural study by usual methods. Synapses were counted in 100 serial sections 150 nm thick and were located to specific hair cells in montages of every 7th section. Counts were analyzed for statistical significance using analysis of variance. Results in maculas of IF dissected rats, one 13 day control (IFC), and one R + 0 rat have been analyzed. Study of an R+ML macula is nearly completed. For type I cells, IF mean is 2.3 +/-1.6; IFC mean is 1.6 +/-1.0; R+O mean is 2.3 +/- 1.6. For type II cells, IF mean is 11.4 +/- 17.1; IFC mean is 5.5 +/-3.5; R+O mean is 10.1 +/- 7.4. The difference between IF and IFC means for type I cells is statistically significant (p less than 0.0464). For type It cells, IF compared to IFC means, p less than 0.0003; and for IFC to R+O means, p less than 0.0139. Shifts toward spheres (p less than 0.0001) and pairs (p less than 0.0139) were significant in type II cells of IF rats. The results are largely replicating findings from SLS-1 and indicate that spaceflight affects synaptic number, form and distribution, particularly in type II hair cells. The increases in synaptic number and in sphere-like ribbons are interpreted to improve synaptic efficacy, to help return afferent discharges to a more normal state. Findings indicate that a great capacity for synaptic plasticity exists in mammalian gravity sensors, and that this plasticity is more dominant in the local circuitry. The local circuit includes type II cells and is interpreted to be responsible for shaping the final output of the system.

  7. Spike Timing-Dependent Synaptic Depression in the In Vivo Barrel Cortex of the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Jacob, Vincent; Brasier, Daniel J.; Erchova, Irina; Feldman, Dan; Shulz, Daniel E.

    2011-01-01

    Spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) is a computationally powerful form of plasticity in which synapses are strengthened or weakened according to the temporal order and precise millisecond-scale delay between presynaptic and postsynaptic spiking activity. STDP is readily observed in vitro, but evidence for STDP in vivo is scarce. Here, we studied spike timing-dependent synaptic depression in single putative pyramidal neurons of the rat primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in vivo, using two techniques. First, we recorded extracellularly from layer 2/3 (L2/3) and L5 neurons, and paired spontaneous action potentials (postsynaptic spikes) with subsequent subthreshold deflection of one whisker (to drive presynaptic afferents to the recorded neuron) to produce “post-leading-pre” spike pairings at known delays. Short delay pairings (<17 ms) resulted in a significant decrease of the extracellular spiking response specific to the paired whisker, consistent with spike timing-dependent synaptic depression. Second, in whole-cell recordings from neurons in L2/3, we paired postsynaptic spikes elicited by direct-current injection with subthreshold whisker deflection to drive presynaptic afferents to the recorded neuron at precise temporal delays. Post-leading-pre pairing (<33 ms delay) decreased the slope and amplitude of the PSP evoked by the paired whisker, whereas “pre-leading-post” delays failed to produce depression, and sometimes produced potentiation of whisker-evoked PSPs. These results demonstrate that spike timing-dependent synaptic depression occurs in S1 in vivo, and is therefore a plausible plasticity mechanism in the sensory cortex. PMID:17287502

  8. Synaptic input of rat spinal lamina I projection and unidentified neurones in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Dahlhaus, Anne; Ruscheweyh, Ruth; Sandkühler, Jürgen

    2005-01-01

    Spinal lamina I projection neurones that transmit nociceptive information to the brain play a pivotal role in hyperalgesia in various animal models of inflammatory and neuropathic pain. Consistently, activity-dependent long-term potentiation can be induced at synapses between primary afferent C-fibres and lamina I projection neurones but not unidentified neurones in lamina I. The specific properties that enable projection neurones to undergo long-term potentiation and mediate hyperalgesia are not fully understood. Here, we have tested whether lamina I projection neurones differ from unidentified neurones in types or strength of primary afferent input and/or action potential-independent excitatory and inhibitory input. We used the whole-cell patch-clamp technique to record synaptic currents in projection and unidentified lamina I neurones in a transverse lumbar spinal cord slice preparation from rats between postnatal day 18 and 37. Lamina I neurones with a projection to the parabrachial area or the periaqueductal grey were identified by retrograde labelling with a fluorescent tracer. The relative contribution of NMDA receptors versus AMPA/kainate receptors to C-fibre-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents of lamina I neurones significantly decreased with age between postnatal day 18 and 27, but was independent of the supraspinal projection of the neurones. We did not find a significant contribution of kainate receptors to C-fibre-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents. Lamina I projection and unidentified neurones possessed functional GABAA and glycine receptors but received scarce action potential-independent spontaneous GABAergic and glycinergic inhibitory input as measured by miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents. The miniature excitatory postsynaptic current frequencies were five times higher in projection than in unidentified neurones. The predominance of excitatory synaptic input to projection neurones, taken together with the previous finding that their membranes are more easily excitable than those of unidentified neurones, may facilitate the induction of synaptic long-term potentiation. PMID:15878938

  9. Synaptic Calcium Regulation in Hair Cells of the Chicken Basilar Papilla

    PubMed Central

    Im, Gi Jung; Moskowitz, Howard S.; Lehar, Mohammed; Hiel, Hakim

    2014-01-01

    Cholinergic inhibition of hair cells occurs by activation of calcium-dependent potassium channels. A near-membrane postsynaptic cistern has been proposed to serve as a store from which calcium is released to supplement influx through the ionotropic ACh receptor. However, the time and voltage dependence of acetylcholine (ACh)-evoked potassium currents reveal a more complex relationship between calcium entry and release from stores. The present work uses voltage steps to regulate calcium influx during the application of ACh to hair cells in the chicken basilar papilla. When calcium influx was terminated at positive membrane potential, the ACh-evoked potassium current decayed exponentially over ?100 ms. However, at negative membrane potentials, this current exhibited a secondary rise in amplitude that could be eliminated by dihydropyridine block of the voltage-gated calcium channels of the hair cell. Calcium entering through voltage-gated channels may transit through the postsynaptic cistern, since ryanodine and sarcoendoplasmic reticulum calcium-ATPase blockers altered the time course and magnitude of this secondary, voltage-dependent contribution to ACh-evoked potassium current. Serial section electron microscopy showed that efferent and afferent synaptic structures are juxtaposed, supporting the possibility that voltage-gated influx at afferent ribbon synapses influences calcium homeostasis during long-lasting cholinergic inhibition. In contrast, spontaneous postsynaptic currents (“minis”) resulting from stochastic efferent release of ACh were made briefer by ryanodine, supporting the hypothesis that the synaptic cistern serves primarily as a calcium barrier and sink during low-level synaptic activity. Hypolemmal cisterns such as that at the efferent synapse of the hair cell can play a dynamic role in segregating near-membrane calcium for short-term and long-term signaling. PMID:25505321

  10. Synaptic NMDA receptor channels have a low open probability.

    PubMed

    Rosenmund, C; Feltz, A; Westbrook, G L

    1995-04-01

    Realistic estimates of channel-gating parameters of synaptic receptors are essential to an understanding of synaptic transmission and modulation. However, the gating of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) channels appears to differ, depending on recording conditions; thus, it remains unclear what measurements are most relevant to synaptic receptors. To further explore this discrepancy, we examined the open probability (Po) of NMDA channels in whole-cell and outside-out patch recording from cultured hippocampal neurons. Currents were evoked by rapid application of saturating concentrations of NMDA in the presence or absence of the "irreversible" open channel blocker, MK-801 ((+)-5-methyl-10,11-dihydro-5H-dibenzo[a,d]cyclohepten-5,10-imine) . The reduction of the peak amplitude and the acceleration of the decay of the current in MK-801 were used to derive Po by fitting the current traces to a multistate kinetic model. The Po in whole cell was low (0.04), similar to that previously measured for synaptically activated NMDA channels. In contrast, ensemble average currents from outside-out patches were much more rapidly blocked in the presence of MK-801, indicative of a significantly higher Po. The Po also gradually increased with the duration of recording in both whole-cell and outside-out configurations, suggesting that channel gating is sensitive to mechanical alterations of the patch or that washout of cytoplasmic factors leads to an increase in channel open probability.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:7536820

  11. A correlated nickelate synaptic transistor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Jian; Ha, Sieu D.; Zhou, You; Schoofs, Frank; Ramanathan, Shriram

    2013-10-01

    Inspired by biological neural systems, neuromorphic devices may open up new computing paradigms to explore cognition, learning and limits of parallel computation. Here we report the demonstration of a synaptic transistor with SmNiO3, a correlated electron system with insulator-metal transition temperature at 130°C in bulk form. Non-volatile resistance and synaptic multilevel analogue states are demonstrated by control over composition in ionic liquid-gated devices on silicon platforms. The extent of the resistance modulation can be dramatically controlled by the film microstructure. By simulating the time difference between postneuron and preneuron spikes as the input parameter of a gate bias voltage pulse, synaptic spike-timing-dependent plasticity learning behaviour is realized. The extreme sensitivity of electrical properties to defects in correlated oxides may make them a particularly suitable class of materials to realize artificial biological circuits that can be operated at and above room temperature and seamlessly integrated into conventional electronic circuits.

  12. Mechanism of synaptic vesicle retrieval in epilepsy 

    E-print Network

    Clayton, Emma Louise

    2009-01-01

    Excessive release of neurotransmitter is a characteristic of epileptogenic cells. A number of lines of evidence implicate defects in the synaptic vesicle cycle as a cause of this excessive release. Synaptic vesicles are ...

  13. Synaptic plasticity, neural circuits, and the emerging role of altered short-term information processing in schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Crabtree, Gregg W.; Gogos, Joseph A.

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity alters the strength of information flow between presynaptic and postsynaptic neurons and thus modifies the likelihood that action potentials in a presynaptic neuron will lead to an action potential in a postsynaptic neuron. As such, synaptic plasticity and pathological changes in synaptic plasticity impact the synaptic computation which controls the information flow through the neural microcircuits responsible for the complex information processing necessary to drive adaptive behaviors. As current theories of neuropsychiatric disease suggest that distinct dysfunctions in neural circuit performance may critically underlie the unique symptoms of these diseases, pathological alterations in synaptic plasticity mechanisms may be fundamental to the disease process. Here we consider mechanisms of both short-term and long-term plasticity of synaptic transmission and their possible roles in information processing by neural microcircuits in both health and disease. As paradigms of neuropsychiatric diseases with strongly implicated risk genes, we discuss the findings in schizophrenia and autism and consider the alterations in synaptic plasticity and network function observed in both human studies and genetic mouse models of these diseases. Together these studies have begun to point toward a likely dominant role of short-term synaptic plasticity alterations in schizophrenia while dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) may be due to a combination of both short-term and long-term synaptic plasticity alterations. PMID:25505409

  14. Phosphorylation of AMPA Receptors Is Required for Sensory Deprivation-Induced Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Goel, Anubhuti; Xu, Linda W.; Snyder, Kevin P.; Song, Lihua; Goenaga-Vazquez, Yamila; Megill, Andrea; Takamiya, Kogo; Huganir, Richard L.; Lee, Hey-Kyoung

    2011-01-01

    Sensory experience, and the lack thereof, can alter the function of excitatory synapses in the primary sensory cortices. Recent evidence suggests that changes in sensory experience can regulate the synaptic level of Ca2+-permeable AMPA receptors (CP-AMPARs). However, the molecular mechanisms underlying such a process have not been determined. We found that binocular visual deprivation, which is a well-established in vivo model to produce multiplicative synaptic scaling in visual cortex of juvenile rodents, is accompanied by an increase in the phosphorylation of AMPAR GluR1 (or GluA1) subunit at the serine 845 (S845) site and the appearance of CP-AMPARs at synapses. To address the role of GluR1-S845 in visual deprivation-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity, we used mice lacking key phosphorylation sites on the GluR1 subunit. We found that mice specifically lacking the GluR1-S845 site (GluR1-S845A mutants), which is a substrate of cAMP-dependent kinase (PKA), show abnormal basal excitatory synaptic transmission and lack visual deprivation-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity. We also found evidence that increasing GluR1-S845 phosphorylation alone is not sufficient to produce normal multiplicative synaptic scaling. Our study provides concrete evidence that a GluR1 dependent mechanism, especially S845 phosphorylation, is a necessary pre-requisite step for in vivo homeostatic synaptic plasticity. PMID:21483826

  15. The products of the Drosophila stoned locus interact with synaptic vesicles via synaptotagmin.

    PubMed

    Phillips, A M; Smith, M; Ramaswami, M; Kelly, L E

    2000-11-15

    The stoned locus of Drosophila melanogaster encodes two novel proteins, stonedA (STNA) and stonedB (STNB), both of which are expressed in the nervous system. Flies with defects at the stoned locus have abnormal behavior and altered synaptic transmission. Genetic interactions, in particular with the shibire (dynamin) mutation, indicated a presynaptic function for stoned and suggested an involvement in vesicle cycling. Immunological studies revealed colocalization of the stoned proteins at the neuromuscular junction with the integral synaptic vesicle protein synaptotagmin (SYT). We show here that stoned interacts genetically with synaptotagmin to produce a lethal phenotype. The STNB protein is found by co-immunoprecipitation to be associated with synaptic vesicles, and glutathione S-transferase pull-downs demonstrate an in vitro interaction between the micro2-homology domain of STNB and the C2B domain of the SYTI isoform. The STNA protein is also found in association with vesicles, and it too exhibits an in vitro association with SYTI. However, we find that the bulk of STNA is in a nonmembranous fraction. By using the shibire mutant to block endocytosis, STNB is shown to be present on some synaptic vesicles before exocytosis. However, STNB is not associated with all synaptic vesicles. We hypothesize that STNB specifies a subset of synaptic vesicles with a role in the synaptic vesicle cycle that is yet to be determined. PMID:11069931

  16. The Influence of Synaptic Size on AMPA Receptor Activation: A Monte Carlo Model

    PubMed Central

    Montes, Jesus; Peña, Jose M.; DeFelipe, Javier; Herreras, Oscar; Merchan-Perez, Angel

    2015-01-01

    Physiological and electron microscope studies have shown that synapses are functionally and morphologically heterogeneous and that variations in size of synaptic junctions are related to characteristics such as release probability and density of postsynaptic AMPA receptors. The present article focuses on how these morphological variations impact synaptic transmission. We based our study on Monte Carlo computational simulations of simplified model synapses whose morphological features have been extracted from hundreds of actual synaptic junctions reconstructed by three-dimensional electron microscopy. We have examined the effects that parameters such as synaptic size or density of AMPA receptors have on the number of receptors that open after release of a single synaptic vesicle. Our results indicate that the maximum number of receptors that will open after the release of a single synaptic vesicle may show a ten-fold variation in the whole population of synapses. When individual synapses are considered, there is also a stochastical variability that is maximal in small synapses with low numbers of receptors. The number of postsynaptic receptors and the size of the synaptic junction are the most influential parameters, while the packing density of receptors or the concentration of extrasynaptic transporters have little or no influence on the opening of AMPA receptors. PMID:26107874

  17. The influence of synaptic size on AMPA receptor activation: a Monte Carlo model.

    PubMed

    Montes, Jesus; Peña, Jose M; DeFelipe, Javier; Herreras, Oscar; Merchan-Perez, Angel

    2015-01-01

    Physiological and electron microscope studies have shown that synapses are functionally and morphologically heterogeneous and that variations in size of synaptic junctions are related to characteristics such as release probability and density of postsynaptic AMPA receptors. The present article focuses on how these morphological variations impact synaptic transmission. We based our study on Monte Carlo computational simulations of simplified model synapses whose morphological features have been extracted from hundreds of actual synaptic junctions reconstructed by three-dimensional electron microscopy. We have examined the effects that parameters such as synaptic size or density of AMPA receptors have on the number of receptors that open after release of a single synaptic vesicle. Our results indicate that the maximum number of receptors that will open after the release of a single synaptic vesicle may show a ten-fold variation in the whole population of synapses. When individual synapses are considered, there is also a stochastical variability that is maximal in small synapses with low numbers of receptors. The number of postsynaptic receptors and the size of the synaptic junction are the most influential parameters, while the packing density of receptors or the concentration of extrasynaptic transporters have little or no influence on the opening of AMPA receptors. PMID:26107874

  18. Phosphorylation of Complexin by PKA Regulates Activity-Dependent Spontaneous Neurotransmitter Release and Structural Synaptic Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Cho, Richard W; Buhl, Lauren K; Volfson, Dina; Tran, Adrienne; Li, Feng; Akbergenova, Yulia; Littleton, J Troy

    2015-11-18

    Synaptic plasticity is a fundamental feature of the nervous system that allows adaptation to changing behavioral environments. Most studies of synaptic plasticity have examined the regulated trafficking of postsynaptic glutamate receptors that generates alterations in synaptic transmission. Whether and how changes in the presynaptic release machinery contribute to neuronal plasticity is less clear. The SNARE complex mediates neurotransmitter release in response to presynaptic Ca(2+) entry. Here we show that the SNARE fusion clamp Complexin undergoes activity-dependent phosphorylation that alters the basic properties of neurotransmission in Drosophila. Retrograde signaling following stimulation activates PKA-dependent phosphorylation of the Complexin C terminus that selectively and transiently enhances spontaneous release. Enhanced spontaneous release is required for activity-dependent synaptic growth. These data indicate that SNARE-dependent fusion mechanisms can be regulated in an activity-dependent manner and highlight the key role of spontaneous neurotransmitter release as a mediator of functional and structural plasticity. PMID:26590346

  19. The Interplay between Synaptic Activity and Neuroligin Function in the CNS

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Xiaoge; Luo, Jian-hong

    2015-01-01

    Neuroligins (NLs) are postsynaptic transmembrane cell-adhesion proteins that play a key role in the regulation of excitatory and inhibitory synapses. Previous in vitro and in vivo studies have suggested that NLs contribute to synapse formation and synaptic transmission. Consistent with their localization, NL1 and NL3 selectively affect excitatory synapses, whereas NL2 specifically affects inhibitory synapses. Deletions or mutations in NL genes have been found in patients with autism spectrum disorders or mental retardations, and mice harboring the reported NL deletions or mutations exhibit autism-related behaviors and synapse dysfunction. Conversely, synaptic activity can regulate the phosphorylation, expression, and cleavage of NLs, which, in turn, can influence synaptic activity. Thus, in clinical research, identifying the relationship between NLs and synapse function is critical. In this review, we primarily discuss how NLs and synaptic activity influence each other. PMID:25839034

  20. Autophosphorylation of ?CaMKII downregulates excitability of CA1 pyramidal neurons following synaptic stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Sametsky, Evgeny A.; Disterhoft, John F.; Ohno, Masuo

    2015-01-01

    It has been well documented that ?-calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (?CaMKII) is central to synaptic plasticity such as long-term potentiation, an activity-dependent strengthening of synapses that is thought to underlie certain types of learning and memory. However, the mechanisms by which ?CaMKII may regulate neuronal excitability remain unclear. Here, we report that ?CaMKII knock-in mice with a targeted T286A point mutation that prevents its autophosphorylation (?CaMKIIT286A) showed increased excitability of CA1 pyramidal neurons compared with wild-type controls, as measured by a decrease in the slow component of post-burst afterhyperpolarization (sAHP) following high-frequency stimulation of Schaffer collateral afferent fibers. In contrast, AHP was indistinguishable between ?CaMKIIT286A and wild-type mice when it was evoked by somatic current injections, indicating that the hyperexcitability is observed specifically in response to synaptic stimulation in this mutant. Taken together, our results suggest that ?CaMKII functions to downregulate CA1 neuron excitability following synaptic stimulation, presumably supporting the functionally adaptive modulation of excitability during hippocampal learning or providing a negative feedback mechanism that would prevent neurons from becoming hyperexcitable and promote network stability. PMID:19245842

  1. Immunomodulation of afferent neurons in guinea-pig isolated airway.

    PubMed

    Riccio, M M; Myers, A C; Undem, B J

    1996-03-01

    1. The trachea, larynx and main bronchi with the right vagus nerve and nodose ganglion were isolated from guinea-pigs passively immunized 24 h previously with serum containing anti-ovalbumin antibody. 2. The airways were placed in one compartment of a Perspex chamber for recording of isometric tension while the nodose ganglion and attached vagus nerve were pulled into another compartment. Action potentials arriving from single airway afferent nerve endings were monitored extracellularly using a glass microelectrode positioned near neuronal cell bodies in the ganglion. Mechanosensitivity of the nerve endings was quantified using calibrated von Frey filaments immediately before and after exposure to antigen (10 micrograms ml-1 ovalbumin). 3. Ten endings responded to the force exerted by the lowest filament (0.078 mN) and were not further investigated. In airways from thirteen immunized guinea-pigs, the mechanical sensitivity of A delta afferent fibres (conduction velocity = 4.3 +/- 0.6 m s-1) was enhanced 4.1 +/- 0.9-fold following airway exposure to antigen (P < 0.005). Mechanical sensitivities of afferent fibres (conduction velocity = 4.3 +/- 0.6 m s-1) from non-immunized control guinea-pig airways were unaffected by antigen (n = 13). 4. Antigen did not overtly cause action potential generation except in one instance when the receptive field was located over the smooth muscle. This ending also responded to methacholine suggesting that spatial changes in the receptive field, induced by muscle contraction, were responsible for the activation. 5. The mediators responsible for these effects are unknown, although histamine, prostaglandins, leukotrienes and tachykinins do not appear to be essential. The increase in mechanical responsiveness was not associated with the smooth muscle contraction since leukotriene C4, histamine and tachykinins, which all caused a similar contraction to antigen, did not affect mechanical thresholds. Moreover, the antigen-induced increases in excitability persisted beyond the duration of the smooth muscle contraction. 6. These results demonstrate that antigen-antibody-mediated inflammatory processes may enhance the excitability of vagal afferent nerve terminals projecting from the airway and thus may contribute to the pathophysiology of allergic airway diseases. PMID:8866873

  2. Synaptic plasticity in early aging.

    E-print Network

    Lynch, Gary; Rex, Christopher S; Gall, Christine M

    2006-01-01

    causes of the localized failure of LTP during early agingaging. (A) Interference with lysosomal proteases causes aCauses of age-related changes in synaptic plasticity From the above, we can specify five target categories for the effects of aging

  3. Pharmacologically distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors drive efferent-mediated excitation in calyx-bearing vestibular afferents.

    PubMed

    Holt, J Chris; Kewin, Kevin; Jordan, Paivi M; Cameron, Peter; Klapczynski, Marcin; McIntosh, J Michael; Crooks, Peter A; Dwoskin, Linda P; Lysakowski, Anna

    2015-02-25

    Electrical stimulation of vestibular efferent neurons rapidly excites the resting discharge of calyx/dimorphic (CD) afferents. In turtle, this excitation arises when acetylcholine (ACh), released from efferent terminals, directly depolarizes calyceal endings by activating nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChRs). Although molecular biological data from the peripheral vestibular system implicate most of the known nAChR subunits, specific information about those contributing to efferent-mediated excitation of CD afferents is lacking. We sought to identify the nAChR subunits that underlie the rapid excitation of CD afferents and whether they differ from ?9?10 nAChRs on type II hair cells that drive efferent-mediated inhibition in adjacent bouton afferents. We recorded from CD and bouton afferents innervating the turtle posterior crista during electrical stimulation of vestibular efferents while applying several subtype-selective nAChR agonists and antagonists. The ?9?10 nAChR antagonists, ?-bungarotoxin and ?-conotoxin RgIA, blocked efferent-mediated inhibition in bouton afferents while leaving efferent-mediated excitation in CD units largely intact. Conversely, 5-iodo-A-85380, sazetidine-A, varenicline, ?-conotoxin MII, and bPiDDB (N,N-dodecane-1,12-diyl-bis-3-picolinium dibromide) blocked efferent-mediated excitation in CD afferents without affecting efferent-mediated inhibition in bouton afferents. This pharmacological profile suggested that calyceal nAChRs contain ?6 and ?2, but not ?9, nAChR subunits. Selective blockade of efferent-mediated excitation in CD afferents distinguished dimorphic from calyx afferents by revealing type II hair cell input. Dimorphic afferents differed in having higher mean discharge rates and a mean efferent-mediated excitation that was smaller in amplitude yet longer in duration. Molecular biological data demonstrated the expression of ?9 in turtle hair cells and ?4 and ?2 in associated vestibular ganglia. PMID:25716861

  4. Thresholds of cutaneous afferents related to perceptual threshold across the human foot sole.

    PubMed

    Strzalkowski, Nicholas D J; Mildren, Robyn L; Bent, Leah R

    2015-10-01

    Perceptual thresholds are known to vary across the foot sole, despite a reported even distribution in cutaneous afferents. Skin mechanical properties have been proposed to account for these differences; however, a direct relationship between foot sole afferent firing, perceptual threshold, and skin mechanical properties has not been previously investigated. Using the technique of microneurography, we recorded the monofilament firing thresholds of cutaneous afferents and associated perceptual thresholds across the foot sole. In addition, receptive field hardness measurements were taken to investigate the influence of skin hardness on these threshold measures. Afferents were identified as fast adapting [FAI (n = 48) or FAII (n = 13)] or slowly adapting [SAI (n = 21) or SAII (n = 20)], and were grouped based on receptive field location (heel, arch, metatarsals, toes). Overall, perceptual thresholds were found to most closely align with firing thresholds of FA afferents. In contrast, SAI and SAII afferent firing thresholds were found to be significantly higher than perceptual thresholds and are not thought to mediate monofilament perceptual threshold across the foot sole. Perceptual thresholds and FAI afferent firing thresholds were significantly lower in the arch compared with other regions, and skin hardness was found to positively correlate with both FAI and FAII afferent firing and perceptual thresholds. These data support a perceptual influence of skin hardness, which is likely the result of elevated FA afferent firing threshold at harder foot sole sites. The close coupling between FA afferent firing and perceptual threshold across foot sole indicates that small changes in FA afferent firing can influence perceptual thresholds. PMID:26289466

  5. Pharmacologically Distinct Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Drive Efferent-Mediated Excitation in Calyx-Bearing Vestibular Afferents

    PubMed Central

    Kewin, Kevin; Jordan, Paivi M.; Cameron, Peter; Klapczynski, Marcin; McIntosh, J. Michael; Crooks, Peter A.; Dwoskin, Linda P.; Lysakowski, Anna

    2015-01-01

    Electrical stimulation of vestibular efferent neurons rapidly excites the resting discharge of calyx/dimorphic (CD) afferents. In turtle, this excitation arises when acetylcholine (ACh), released from efferent terminals, directly depolarizes calyceal endings by activating nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChRs). Although molecular biological data from the peripheral vestibular system implicate most of the known nAChR subunits, specific information about those contributing to efferent-mediated excitation of CD afferents is lacking. We sought to identify the nAChR subunits that underlie the rapid excitation of CD afferents and whether they differ from ?9?10 nAChRs on type II hair cells that drive efferent-mediated inhibition in adjacent bouton afferents. We recorded from CD and bouton afferents innervating the turtle posterior crista during electrical stimulation of vestibular efferents while applying several subtype-selective nAChR agonists and antagonists. The ?9?10 nAChR antagonists, ?-bungarotoxin and ?-conotoxin RgIA, blocked efferent-mediated inhibition in bouton afferents while leaving efferent-mediated excitation in CD units largely intact. Conversely, 5-iodo-A-85380, sazetidine-A, varenicline, ?-conotoxin MII, and bPiDDB (N,N-dodecane-1,12-diyl-bis-3-picolinium dibromide) blocked efferent-mediated excitation in CD afferents without affecting efferent-mediated inhibition in bouton afferents. This pharmacological profile suggested that calyceal nAChRs contain ?6 and ?2, but not ?9, nAChR subunits. Selective blockade of efferent-mediated excitation in CD afferents distinguished dimorphic from calyx afferents by revealing type II hair cell input. Dimorphic afferents differed in having higher mean discharge rates and a mean efferent-mediated excitation that was smaller in amplitude yet longer in duration. Molecular biological data demonstrated the expression of ?9 in turtle hair cells and ?4 and ?2 in associated vestibular ganglia. PMID:25716861

  6. Minimizing synaptic depression by control of release probability.

    PubMed

    Brenowitz, S; Trussell, L O

    2001-03-15

    Transmission at the end-bulb synapse formed by auditory nerve terminals onto the soma of neurons in the avian nucleus magnocellularis is characterized by high transmitter release probability and strong synaptic depression. Activation of presynaptic GABA(B) receptors minimizes depression at this synapse and significantly enhances synaptic strength during high-frequency activity. Here we investigate synaptic mechanisms underlying this phenomenon. EPSC amplitudes evoked by 200 Hz trains increased more than twofold when release probability was reduced with Cd(2+) or baclofen. This effect was not exhibited by a transmitter depletion model of presynaptic depression, which predicts that EPSC amplitudes reach a common steady-state amplitude during high-frequency trains, despite alterations of initial release probability. However, an additional source of postsynaptic depression was sufficient to explain our findings. Aniracetam, a modulator of AMPA receptors that reduces desensitization, decreased the amount of synaptic depression during trains, indicating that desensitization occurred during trains of stimuli. However, this effect of aniracetam was absent when release probability was lowered with baclofen or Cd(2+). No effect of aniracetam on the NMDA component of the EPSC was seen, confirming a postsynaptic site of action of aniracetam. When desensitization was reduced with aniracetam, steady-state EPSC amplitudes during trains were found to converge over a wide range of release probabilities, as predicted by the depletion model. Additional evidence of AMPA receptor desensitization was provided by direct measurement of quantal amplitudes immediately after stimulus trains. Thus, presynaptic modulation by GABA(B) receptors regulates the extent of AMPA receptor desensitization and controls synaptic strength, thereby modulating the flow of information at an auditory synapse. PMID:11245670

  7. High Bandwidth Synaptic Communication and Frequency Tracking in Human Neocortex

    PubMed Central

    Testa-Silva, Guilherme; Verhoog, Matthijs B.; Linaro, Daniele; de Kock, Christiaan P. J.; Baayen, Johannes C.; Meredith, Rhiannon M.; De Zeeuw, Chris I.; Giugliano, Michele; Mansvelder, Huibert D.

    2014-01-01

    Neuronal firing, synaptic transmission, and its plasticity form the building blocks for processing and storage of information in the brain. It is unknown whether adult human synapses are more efficient in transferring information between neurons than rodent synapses. To test this, we recorded from connected pairs of pyramidal neurons in acute brain slices of adult human and mouse temporal cortex and probed the dynamical properties of use-dependent plasticity. We found that human synaptic connections were purely depressing and that they recovered three to four times more swiftly from depression than synapses in rodent neocortex. Thereby, during realistic spike trains, the temporal resolution of synaptic information exchange in human synapses substantially surpasses that in mice. Using information theory, we calculate that information transfer between human pyramidal neurons exceeds that of mouse pyramidal neurons by four to nine times, well into the beta and gamma frequency range. In addition, we found that human principal cells tracked fine temporal features, conveyed in received synaptic inputs, at a wider bandwidth than for rodents. Action potential firing probability was reliably phase-locked to input transients up to 1,000 cycles/s because of a steep onset of action potentials in human pyramidal neurons during spike trains, unlike in rodent neurons. Our data show that, in contrast to the widely held views of limited information transfer in rodent depressing synapses, fast recovering synapses of human neurons can actually transfer substantial amounts of information during spike trains. In addition, human pyramidal neurons are equipped to encode high synaptic information content. Thus, adult human cortical microcircuits relay information at a wider bandwidth than rodent microcircuits. PMID:25422947

  8. Long-Term Culture of Astrocytes Attenuates the Readily Releasable Pool of Synaptic Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Kawano, Hiroyuki; Katsurabayashi, Shutaro; Kakazu, Yasuhiro; Yamashita, Yuta; Kubo, Natsuko; Kubo, Masafumi; Okuda, Hideto; Takasaki, Kotaro; Kubota, Kaori; Mishima, Kenichi; Fujiwara, Michihiro; Harata, N. Charles; Iwasaki, Katsunori

    2012-01-01

    The astrocyte is a major glial cell type of the brain, and plays key roles in the formation, maturation, stabilization and elimination of synapses. Thus, changes in astrocyte condition and age can influence information processing at synapses. However, whether and how aging astrocytes affect synaptic function and maturation have not yet been thoroughly investigated. Here, we show the effects of prolonged culture on the ability of astrocytes to induce synapse formation and to modify synaptic transmission, using cultured autaptic neurons. By 9 weeks in culture, astrocytes derived from the mouse cerebral cortex demonstrated increases in ?-galactosidase activity and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) expression, both of which are characteristic of aging and glial activation in vitro. Autaptic hippocampal neurons plated on these aging astrocytes showed a smaller amount of evoked release of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate, and a lower frequency of miniature release of glutamate, both of which were attributable to a reduction in the pool of readily releasable synaptic vesicles. Other features of synaptogenesis and synaptic transmission were retained, for example the ability to induce structural synapses, the presynaptic release probability, the fraction of functional presynaptic nerve terminals, and the ability to recruit functional AMPA and NMDA glutamate receptors to synapses. Thus the presence of aging astrocytes affects the efficiency of synaptic transmission. Given that the pool of readily releasable vesicles is also small at immature synapses, our results are consistent with astrocytic aging leading to retarded synapse maturation. PMID:23110166

  9. Super-resolution microscopy of the synaptic active zone

    PubMed Central

    Ehmann, Nadine; Sauer, Markus; Kittel, Robert J.

    2015-01-01

    Brain function relies on accurate information transfer at chemical synapses. At the presynaptic active zone (AZ) a variety of specialized proteins are assembled to complex architectures, which set the basis for speed, precision and plasticity of synaptic transmission. Calcium channels are pivotal for the initiation of excitation-secretion coupling and, correspondingly, capture a central position at the AZ. Combining quantitative functional studies with modeling approaches has provided predictions of channel properties, numbers and even positions on the nanometer scale. However, elucidating the nanoscopic organization of the surrounding protein network requires direct ultrastructural access. Without this information, knowledge of molecular synaptic structure-function relationships remains incomplete. Recently, super-resolution microscopy (SRM) techniques have begun to enter the neurosciences. These approaches combine high spatial resolution with the molecular specificity of fluorescence microscopy. Here, we discuss how SRM can be used to obtain information on the organization of AZ proteins. PMID:25688186

  10. ERK, synaptic plasticity and acid-induced muscle pain.

    PubMed

    Min, Ming-Yuan; Yang, Hsiu-Wen; Yen, Chen-Tung; Chen, Chien-Chang; Chen, Chih-Cheng; Cheng, Sin-Jhong

    2011-07-01

    Chronic pain is characterized by post-injury pain hypersensitivity. Current evidence suggests that it might result from altered neuronal excitability and/or synaptic functions in pain-related pathways and brain areas, an effect known as central sensitization. Increased activity of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) has been well-demonstrated in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord in chronic pain animal models. Recently, increased ERK activity has also been identified in two supraspinal areas, the central amygdala and the paraventricular thalamic nucleus anterior. Our recent work on the capsular central amygdala has shown that this increased ERK activity can enhance synaptic transmission, which might account for central sensitization and behavior hypersensitivity in animals receiving noxious stimuli. PMID:21966555

  11. Short-term synaptic plasticity and heterogeneity in neural systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mejias, J. F.; Kappen, H. J.; Longtin, A.; Torres, J. J.

    2013-01-01

    We review some recent results on neural dynamics and information processing which arise when considering several biophysical factors of interest, in particular, short-term synaptic plasticity and neural heterogeneity. The inclusion of short-term synaptic plasticity leads to enhanced long-term memory capacities, a higher robustness of memory to noise, and irregularity in the duration of the so-called up cortical states. On the other hand, considering some level of neural heterogeneity in neuron models allows neural systems to optimize information transmission in rate coding and temporal coding, two strategies commonly used by neurons to codify information in many brain areas. In all these studies, analytical approximations can be made to explain the underlying dynamics of these neural systems.

  12. Endogenous calcium buffering at photoreceptor synaptic terminals in salamander retina.

    PubMed

    Van Hook, Matthew J; Thoreson, Wallace B

    2014-11-01

    Calcium operates by several mechanisms to regulate glutamate release at rod and cone synaptic terminals. In addition to serving as the exocytotic trigger, Ca2+ accelerates replenishment of vesicles in cones and triggers Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release (CICR) in rods. Ca2+ thereby amplifies sustained exocytosis, enabling photoreceptor synapses to encode constant and changing light. A complete picture of the role of Ca2+ in regulating synaptic transmission requires an understanding of the endogenous Ca2+ handling mechanisms at the synapse. We therefore used the "added buffer" approach to measure the endogenous Ca2+ binding ratio (?endo ) and extrusion rate constant (?) in synaptic terminals of photoreceptors in retinal slices from tiger salamander. We found that ?endo was similar in both cell types-?25 and 50 in rods and cones, respectively. Using measurements of the decay time constants of Ca2+ transients, we found that ? was also similar, with values of ?100 s(-1) and 160 s(-1) in rods and cones, respectively. The measurements of ?endo differ considerably from measurements in retinal bipolar cells, another ribbon-bearing class of retinal neurons, but are comparable to similar measurements at other conventional synapses. The values of ? are slower than at other synapses, suggesting that Ca2+ ions linger longer in photoreceptor terminals, supporting sustained exocytosis, CICR, and Ca2+ -dependent ribbon replenishment. The mechanisms of endogenous Ca2+ handling in photoreceptors are thus well-suited for supporting tonic neurotransmission. Similarities between rod and cone Ca2+ handling suggest that neither buffering nor extrusion underlie differences in synaptic transmission kinetics. PMID:25049035

  13. Interactions between visceral afferent signaling and stimulus processing

    PubMed Central

    Critchley, Hugo D.; Garfinkel, Sarah N.

    2015-01-01

    Visceral afferent signals to the brain influence thoughts, feelings and behavior. Here we highlight the findings of a set of empirical investigations in humans concerning body-mind interaction that focus on how feedback from states of autonomic arousal shapes cognition and emotion. There is a longstanding debate regarding the contribution of the body to mental processes. Recent theoretical models broadly acknowledge the role of (autonomically-mediated) physiological arousal to emotional, social and motivational behaviors, yet the underlying mechanisms are only partially characterized. Neuroimaging is overcoming this shortfall; first, by demonstrating correlations between autonomic change and discrete patterns of evoked, and task-independent, neural activity; second, by mapping the central consequences of clinical perturbations in autonomic response and; third, by probing how dynamic fluctuations in peripheral autonomic state are integrated with perceptual, cognitive and emotional processes. Building on the notion that an important source of the brain's representation of physiological arousal is derived from afferent information from arterial baroreceptors, we have exploited the phasic nature of these signals to show their differential contribution to the processing of emotionally-salient stimuli. This recent work highlights the facilitation at neural and behavioral levels of fear and threat processing that contrasts with the more established observations of the inhibition of central pain processing during baroreceptors activation. The implications of this body-brain-mind axis are discussed. PMID:26379481

  14. A quantitative study of cochlear afferent axons in birds.

    PubMed

    Köppl, C; Wegscheider, A; Gleich, O; Manley, G A

    2000-01-01

    This paper is a comparative study of auditory-nerve morphology in birds. The chicken (Gallus gallus), the emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) and the starling (Sturnus vulgaris) were chosen as unspecialised birds that have already been used in auditory research. The data are discussed in comparison to a similar earlier study on the barn owl, a bird with highly specialised hearing, in an attempt to separate general avian patterns from species specialisations. Average numbers of afferent fibres from 8775 (starling) to 12¿ omitted¿406 (chicken) were counted, excluding fibres to the lagenar macula. The number of fibres representing different frequency ranges showed broad maxima in the chicken and emu, corresponding to hearing ranges of best sensitivity and/or particular behavioural relevance. Mean axon diameters were around 2 microm in the chicken and starling, and around 3 microm in the emu. Virtually all auditory afferents were myelinated. The mean thickness of the myelin sheaths was between 0.33 microm (starling) and 0.4 microm (emu). There was a consistent pattern in the diameters of axons deriving from different regions. Axons from very basal, i.e. highest-frequency, parts of the basilar papilla were always the smallest. In the emu and the chicken, axons from the middle papillar regions were, in addition, larger than axons innervating apical regions. PMID:10601718

  15. AFFERENT REGULATION OF OXIDATIVE STRESS IN THE CHICK COCHLEAR NUCLEUS

    PubMed Central

    NICHOLAS, A. H.; HYSON, R. L.

    2007-01-01

    The chick auditory brain stem has been a useful model system for examining the afferent-dependent signals that regulate postsynaptic neurons. Like other sensory systems, compromised afferent input results in rapid death and atrophy of postsynaptic neurons. The present paper explores the possible contributions of an oxidative stress pathway in determining neuronal fate following deafferentation. Levels of reactive oxygen species, lipid damage measured by 4-hydroxynonenal formation, and a compensatory reactive oxygen species-induced response regulated by glutathione s transferase M1 and the reactive oxygen species-sensitive transcriptional factor, nuclear respiratory factor 1 were examined. Unilateral cochlea removal surgery was performed on young posthatch chicks. Labeling in the cochlear nucleus, nucleus magnocellularis, on opposite sides of the same tissue sections were compared by densitometry. The results showed a dramatic increase in reactive oxygen species in the deafferented nucleus magnocellularis by 6 h following cochlea removal. This increase in reactive oxygen species was accompanied by lipid damage and a compensatory upregulation of both glutathione s transferase M1 and nuclear respiratory factor 1. Double-labeling revealed that glutathione s transferase M1 expression was highest in neurons that were likely to survive deafferentation, as assessed immunocytochemically with Y10b, a marker for ribosomal integrity. Together, these data suggest reactive oxygen species are generated and a compensatory detoxifying pathway is upregulated in the first few hours following deafferentation. This is consistent with the hypothesis that oxidative stress plays a role in determining whether a given neuron survives following deafferentation. PMID:16650604

  16. Nitric Oxide Signaling Is Recruited As a Compensatory Mechanism for Sustaining Synaptic Plasticity in Alzheimer's Disease Mice

    PubMed Central

    Chakroborty, Shreaya; Kim, Joyce; Schneider, Corinne; West, Anthony R.

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity deficits are increasingly recognized as causing the memory impairments which define Alzheimer's disease (AD). In AD mouse models, evidence of abnormal synaptic function is present before the onset of cognitive deficits, and presents as increased synaptic depression revealed only when synaptic homeostasis is challenged, such as with suppression of ryanodine receptor (RyR)-evoked calcium signaling. Otherwise, at early disease stages, the synaptic physiology phenotype appears normal. This suggests compensatory mechanisms are recruited to maintain a functionally normal net output of the hippocampal circuit. A candidate calcium-regulated synaptic modulator is nitric oxide (NO), which acts presynaptically to boost vesicle release and glutamatergic transmission. Here we tested whether there is a feedforward cycle between the increased RyR calcium release seen in presymptomatic AD mice and aberrant NO signaling which augments synaptic plasticity. Using a combination of electrophysiological approaches, two-photon calcium imaging, and protein biochemistry in hippocampal tissue from presymptomatic 3xTg-AD and NonTg mice, we show that blocking NO synthesis results in markedly augmented synaptic depression mediated through presynaptic mechanisms in 3xTg-AD mice. Additionally, blocking NO reduces the augmented synaptically evoked dendritic calcium release mediated by enhanced RyR calcium release. This is accompanied by increased nNOS levels in the AD mice and is reversed upon normalization of RyR-evoked calcium release with chronic dantrolene treatment. Thus, recruitment of NO is serving a compensatory role to boost synaptic transmission and plasticity during early AD stages. However, NO's dual role in neuroprotection and neurodegeneration may convert to maladaptive functions as the disease progresses. PMID:25926464

  17. Addiction therapy. Refining deep brain stimulation to emulate optogenetic treatment of synaptic pathology.

    PubMed

    Creed, Meaghan; Pascoli, Vincent Jean; Lüscher, Christian

    2015-02-01

    Circuit remodeling driven by pathological forms of synaptic plasticity underlies several psychiatric diseases, including addiction. Deep brain stimulation (DBS) has been applied to treat a number of neurological and psychiatric conditions, although its effects are transient and mediated by largely unknown mechanisms. Recently, optogenetic protocols that restore normal transmission at identified synapses in mice have provided proof of the idea that cocaine-adaptive behavior can be reversed in vivo. The most efficient protocol relies on the activation of metabotropic glutamate receptors, mGluRs, which depotentiates excitatory synaptic inputs onto dopamine D1 receptor medium-sized spiny neurons and normalizes drug-adaptive behavior. We discovered that acute low-frequency DBS, refined by selective blockade of dopamine D1 receptors, mimics optogenetic mGluR-dependent normalization of synaptic transmission. Consequently, there was a long-lasting abolishment of behavioral sensitization. PMID:25657248

  18. Synaptic plasticity and sensory-motor improvement following fibrin sealant dorsal root reimplantation and mononuclear cell therapy

    PubMed Central

    Benitez, Suzana U.; Barbizan, Roberta; Spejo, Aline B.; Ferreira, Rui S.; Barraviera, Benedito; Góes, Alfredo M.; de Oliveira, Alexandre L. R.

    2014-01-01

    Root lesions may affect both dorsal and ventral roots. However, due to the possibility of generating further inflammation and neuropathic pain, surgical procedures do not prioritize the repair of the afferent component. The loss of such sensorial input directly disturbs the spinal circuits thus affecting the functionality of the injuried limb. The present study evaluated the motor and sensory improvement following dorsal root reimplantation with fibrin sealant (FS) plus bone marrow mononuclear cells (MC) after dorsal rhizotomy. MC were used to enhance the repair process. We also analyzed changes in the glial response and synaptic circuits within the spinal cord. Female Lewis rats (6–8 weeks old) were divided in three groups: rhizotomy (RZ group), rhizotomy repaired with FS (RZ+FS group) and rhizotomy repaired with FS and MC (RZ+FS+MC group). The behavioral tests electronic von-Frey and Walking track test were carried out. For immunohistochemistry we used markers to detect different synapse profiles as well as glial reaction. The behavioral results showed a significant decrease in sensory and motor function after lesion. The reimplantation decreased glial reaction and improved synaptic plasticity of afferent inputs. Cell therapy further enhanced the rewiring process. In addition, both reimplanted groups presented twice as much motor control compared to the non-treated group. In conclusion, the reimplantation with FS and MC is efficient and may be considered an approach to improve sensory-motor recovery following dorsal rhizotomy. PMID:25249946

  19. Functional recovery of anterior semicircular canal afferents following hair cell regeneration in birds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boyle, Richard; Highstein, Stephen M.; Carey, John P.; Xu, Jinping

    2002-01-01

    Streptomycin sulfate (1.2 g/kg i.m.) was administered for 5 consecutive days to 5-7-day-old white Leghorn chicks; this causes damage to semicircular canal hair cells that ultimately regenerate to reform the sensory epithelium. During the recovery period, electrophysiological recordings were taken sequentially from anterior semicircular canal primary afferents using an indentation stimulus of the canal that has been shown to mimic rotational stimulation. Chicks were assigned to an early (14-18 days; n = 8), intermediate (28-34 days; n = 5), and late (38-58 days; n = 4) period based on days after treatment. Seven untreated chicks, 15-67 days old, provided control data. An absence of background and indent-induced discharge was the prominent feature of afferents in the early period: only "silent" afferents were encountered in 5/8 experiments. In several of these chicks, fascicles of afferent fibers were seen extending up to the epithelium that was void of hair cells, and intra- and extracellular biocytin labeling revealed afferent processes penetrating into the supporting cell layer of the crista. In 3/8 chicks 74 afferents could be characterized, and they significantly differed from controls (n = 130) by having a lower discharge rate and a negligible response to canal stimulation. In the intermediate period there was considerable variability in discharge properties of 121 afferents, but as a whole the number of "silent" fibers in the canal nerve diminished, the background rate increased, and a response to canal stimulation detected. Individually biocytin-labeled afferents had normal-appearing terminal specializations in the sensory epithelium by 28 days poststreptomycin. In the late period, afferents (n = 58) remained significantly different from controls in background discharge properties and response gain. The evidence suggests that a considerable amount of variability exists between chicks in the return of vestibular afferent function following ototoxic injury and that the secretory function of regenerating hair cells might become functional before their transducer function.

  20. M1 Muscarinic Receptors Boost Synaptic Potentials and Calcium Influx in Dendritic Spines by Inhibiting Postsynaptic SK channels

    PubMed Central

    Giessel, Andrew J.; Sabatini, Bernardo L.

    2010-01-01

    Acetylcholine release and activation of muscarinic cholinergic receptors (mAChRs) enhance synaptic plasticity in vitro and cognition and memory in vivo. Within the hippocampus, mAChRs enhance NMDA-type glutamate receptor-dependent forms of long-term potentiation. Here, we use calcium (Ca) imaging combined with 2-photon laser glutamate uncaging at apical spines of CA1 pyramidal neurons to examine post-synaptic mechanisms of muscarinic modulation of glutamatergic transmission. Uncaging-evoked excitatory post-synaptic potentials and Ca transients are increased by muscarinic stimulation; however, this is not due to direct modulation of glutamate receptors. Instead, mAChRs modulate a negative feedback loop in spines that normally suppresses synaptic signals. mAChR activation reduces the Ca sensitivity of small conductance Ca-activated potassium (SK) channels that are found in the spine, resulting in increased synaptic potentials and Ca transients. These effects are mediated by M1-type muscarinic receptors and occur in a casein kinase-2 dependent manner. Thus, muscarinic modulation regulates synaptic transmission by tuning the activity of non-glutamatergic post-synaptic ion channels. PMID:21145006

  1. Temporal Dynamics of L5 Dendrites in Medial Prefrontal Cortex Regulate Integration Versus Coincidence Detection of Afferent Inputs

    PubMed Central

    Zemelman, Boris V.; Johnston, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Distinct brain regions are highly interconnected via long-range projections. How this inter-regional communication occurs depends not only upon which subsets of postsynaptic neurons receive input, but also, and equally importantly, upon what cellular subcompartments the projections target. Neocortical pyramidal neurons receive input onto their apical dendrites. However, physiological characterization of these inputs thus far has been exclusively somatocentric, leaving how the dendrites respond to spatial and temporal patterns of input unexplored. Here we used a combination of optogenetics with multisite electrode recordings to simultaneously measure dendritic and somatic responses to afferent fiber activation in two different populations of layer 5 (L5) pyramidal neurons in the rat medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). We found that commissural inputs evoked monosynaptic responses in both intratelencephalic (IT) and pyramidal tract (PT) dendrites, whereas monosynaptic hippocampal input primarily targeted IT, but not PT, dendrites. To understand the role of dendritic integration in the processing of long-range inputs, we used dynamic clamp to simulate synaptic currents in the dendrites. IT dendrites functioned as temporal integrators that were particularly responsive to dendritic inputs within the gamma frequency range (40–140 Hz). In contrast, PT dendrites acted as coincidence detectors by responding to spatially distributed signals within a narrow time window. Thus, the PFC extracts information from different brain regions through the combination of selective dendritic targeting and the distinct dendritic physiological properties of L5 pyramidal dendrites. PMID:25788669

  2. Bursts modify electrical synaptic strength

    PubMed Central

    Haas, Julie S.

    2012-01-01

    Changes in synaptic strength resulting from neuronal activity have been described in great detail at chemical synapses, but the relationship between natural forms of activity and strength at electrical synapses had previously not been investigated. The thalamic reticular nucleus (TRN), a brain area rich in gap junctional (electrical) synapses, regulates cortical attention, initiates sleep spindles, and participates in shifts between states of arousal. Plasticity of electrical synapses in the TRN may be a key mechanism underlying these processes. Recently, a novel activity-dependent form of long-term depression was described at electrical synapses in the TRN [29]. Here we provide an overview of those findings and discuss them in broader context. Because gap junctional proteins are widely expressed in the mammalian brain, modification of synaptic strength is likely to be a widespread and powerful mechanism at electrical synapses across the brain. PMID:22771703

  3. Synaptic Impairment in Layer 1 of the Prefrontal Cortex Induced by Repeated Stress During Adolescence is Reversed in Adulthood

    PubMed Central

    Negrón-Oyarzo, Ignacio; Dagnino-Subiabre, Alexies; Muñoz Carvajal, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Chronic stress is a risk factor for the development of psychiatric disorders, some of which involve dysfunction of the prefrontal cortex (PFC). There is a higher prevalence of these chronic stress-related psychiatric disorders during adolescence, when the PFC has not yet fully matured. In the present work we studied the effect of repeated stress during adolescence on synaptic function in the PFC in adolescence and adulthood. To this end, adolescent Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to seven consecutive days of restraint stress. Afterward, both synaptic transmission and short- and long-term synaptic plasticity were evaluated in layer 1 of medial-PFC (mPFC) slices from adolescent and adult rats. We found that repeated stress significantly reduced the amplitude of evoked field excitatory post-synaptic potential (fEPSP) in the mPFC. Isolation of excitatory transmission reveled that lower-amplitude fEPSPs were associated with a reduction in ?-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor-mediated transmission. We also found that repeated stress significantly decreased long-term depression (LTD). Interestingly, AMPA/kainate receptor-mediated transmission and LTD were recovered in adult animals that experienced a three-week stress-free recovery period. The data indicates that the changes in synaptic transmission and plasticity in the mPFC induced by repeated stress during adolescence are reversed in adulthood after a stress-free period. PMID:26617490

  4. Astroglial calcium signaling displays short-term plasticity and adjusts synaptic efficacy

    PubMed Central

    Sibille, Jérémie; Zapata, Jonathan; Teillon, Jérémie; Rouach, Nathalie

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are dynamic signaling brain elements able to sense neuronal inputs and to respond by complex calcium signals, which are thought to represent their excitability. Such signaling has been proposed to modulate, or not, neuronal activities ranging from basal synaptic transmission to epileptiform discharges. However, whether calcium signaling in astrocytes exhibits activity-dependent changes and acutely modulates short-term synaptic plasticity is currently unclear. We here show, using dual recordings of astroglial calcium signals and synaptic transmission, that calcium signaling in astrocytes displays, concomitantly to excitatory synapses, short-term plasticity in response to prolonged repetitive and tetanic stimulations of Schaffer collaterals. We also found that acute inhibition of calcium signaling in astrocytes by intracellular calcium chelation rapidly potentiates excitatory synaptic transmission and short-term plasticity of Shaffer collateral CA1 synapses, i.e., paired-pulse facilitation and responses to tetanic and prolonged repetitive stimulation. These data reveal that calcium signaling of astrocytes is plastic and down-regulates basal transmission and short-term plasticity of hippocampal CA1 glutamatergic synapses. PMID:26074766

  5. EFFECTS OF THE ECDYSONELESS MUTANT ON SYNAPTIC EFFICACY AND STRUCTURE AT THE NEUROMUSCULAR JUNCTION IN

    E-print Network

    Cooper, Robin L.

    (Ru¡ner et al., 1999) and cray¢sh (Cooper and Ru¡ner, 1998). Taking advantage of genetic manipulation IN DROSOPHILA LARVAE DURING NORMAL AND PROLONGED DEVELOPMENT H. LI and R. L. COOPER* 101 T.H. Morgan School in development and maintenance of synaptic transmission involves examination of both the presynaptic

  6. Filter characteristics of cercal afferents in the cockroach.

    PubMed

    Kondoh, Y; Arima, T; Okuma, J; Hasegawa, Y

    1991-12-01

    The response dynamics of cercal afferents in the cockroach. Periplaneta americana, were determined by means of a cross-correlation technique using a Gaussian white noise modulation of wind as a stimulus. The white noise stimulus could evoke sustained firing activity in most of the afferents examined (Fig. 1). The spike discharges were unitized and then cross-correlated with the stimulus to compute 1st- and 2nd-order Weiner kernels. The 1st-order kernels from a total of 28 afferents were biphasic and closely matched the time differential of a pulse (Figs. 1, 3 and 4). The amplitude and waveform of the kernels depended on the stimulus angle in such a way that the kernels were the mirror image of those on the polar opposite side (Figs. 2 and 3). The 2nd-order kernels were also differential. They had 2 diagonal peaks and 2 off-diagonal valleys in a 2-dimensional plot with 2 time axes (Figs. 1, 5 and 6). This 4-eye configuration was basically invariant irrespective of the stimulus angle, although the kernels varied in amplitude when the stimulus angle was changed. The time between the peak and a following trough of the 1st-order kernel was constant and had a mean of 4.6 +/- 0.1 ms, whereas the time between 2 diagonal peaks of the 2nd-order kernels was 4.7 +/- 0.1 ms (Figs. 4 and 6), suggesting that wind receptors (filiform sensilla) on cerci act as a band-pass filter with a peak frequency of about 106 Hz. The peak time, however, varies from 2.3 to 6.9 ms in both kernels, which may reflect the spatial distribution of the corresponding hairs on the cercus. The summation of the 1st- (linear) and 2nd-order (nonlinear) models precisely predicted the timing of the spike firing (Fig. 8). Thus, these 2 lower-order kernels can totally characterize the response dynamics of the wind receptors. The nonlinear response explains the directional sensitivity of the sensory neurons, while the differentiating 1st-order kernel explains the velocity sensitivity of the neurons. The nonlinearity is a signal compression in which one of the diagonal peaks of the 2nd-order kernel always offsets the downward phase of the 1st-order kernel (Fig. 7) and obviously represents a half-wave rectification property of the wind receptors that are excited by hair movement in only one direction and inhibited by hair movement in the polar opposite direction. PMID:1795233

  7. Anaesthetics differentially modulate the trigeminocardiac reflex excitatory synaptic pathway in the brainstem

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xin; Gorini, Christopher; Sharp, Douglas; Bateman, Ryan; Mendelowitz, David

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The trigeminocardiac reflex (TCR) occurs upon excitation of the trigeminal nerve with a resulting bradycardia and hypotension. While several anaesthetics and analgesics have been reported to alter the incidence and strength of the TCR the mechanisms for this modulation are unclear. This study examines the mechanisms of action of ketamine, isoflurane and fentanyl on the synaptic TCR responses in both neurones in the spinal trigeminal interpolaris (Sp5I) nucleus and cardiac vagal neurones (CVNs) in the Nucleus Ambiguus (NA). Stimulation of trigeminal afferent fibres evoked an excitatory postsynaptic current (EPSC) in trigeminal neurones with a latency of 1.8 ± 0.1 ms, jitter of 625 ?s, and peak amplitude of 239 ± 45 pA. Synaptic responses further downstream in the reflex pathway in the CVNs occurred with a latency of 12.1 ± 1.1 ms, jitter of 0.8–2 ms and amplitude of 57.8 ± 7.5 pA. The average conduction velocity to the Sp5I neurones was 0.94 ± 0.18 mm ms?1 indicating a mixture of A-? and C fibres. Stimulation-evoked EPSCs in both Sp5I and CVNs were completely blocked by AMPA/kainate and NMDA glutamatergic receptor antagonists. Ketamine (10 ?m) inhibited the peak amplitude and duration in Sp5I as well as more distal synapses in the CVNs. Isoflurane (300 ?m) significantly inhibited, while fentanyl (1 ?m) significantly enhanced, EPSC amplitude and area in CVNs but had no effect on the responses in Sp5l neurones. These findings indicate glutamatergic excitatory synaptic pathways are critical in the TCR, and ketamine, isoflurane and fentanyl differentially alter the synaptic pathways via modulation of both AMPA/kainate and NMDA receptors at different synapses in the TCR. PMID:21930602

  8. Role played by NaV 1.7 channels on thin-fiber muscle afferents in transmitting the exercise pressor reflex.

    PubMed

    Stone, Audrey J; Copp, Steven W; Kaufman, Marc P

    2015-11-15

    Voltage-gated sodium channels (NaV) 1.7 are highly expressed on the axons of somatic afferent neurons and are thought to play an important role in the signaling of inflammatory pain. NaV 1.7 channels are classified as tetrodotoxin (TTX)-sensitive, meaning that they are blocked by TTX concentrations of less than 300 nM. These findings prompted us to determine in decerebrated, unanesthetized rats, the role played by NaV 1.7 channels in the transmission of muscle afferent input evoking the exercise pressor reflex. We first showed that the exercise pressor reflex, which was evoked by static contraction of the triceps surae muscles, was reversibly attenuated by application of 50 nM TTX, but not 5 nM TTX, to the L4-L5 dorsal roots (control: 21 ± 1 mmHg, TTX: 8 ± 2 mmHg, recovery: 21 ± 3 mmHg; n = 6; P < 0.01). We next found that the peak pressor responses to contraction were significantly attenuated by dorsal root application of 100 nM Ssm6a, a compound that is a selective NaV 1.7 channel inhibitor. Removal of Ssm6a restored the reflex to its control level (control: 19 ± 3 mmHg, Ssm6a: 10 ± 1 mmHg, recovery: 19 ± 4 mmHg; n = 6; P < 0.05). Compound action potentials recorded from the L4 and L5 dorsal roots and evoked by single-pulse stimulation of the sciatic nerve showed that both TTX and Ssm6a attenuated input from group III, as well as group IV afferents. We conclude that NaV 1.7 channels play a role in the thin-fiber muscle afferent pathway evoking the exercise pressor reflex. PMID:26310938

  9. SIRT1 is essential for normal cognitive function and synaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Michán, Shaday; Li, Ying; Chou, Maggie Meng-Hsiu; Parrella, Edoardo; Ge, Huanying; Long, Jeffrey M.; Allard, Joanne S.; Lewis, Kaitlyn; Miller, Marshall; Xu, Wei; Mervis, Ronald F.; Chen, Jing; Guerin, Karen I.; Smith, Lois E. H.; McBurney, Michael W.; Sinclair, David A.; Baudry, Michel; de Cabo, Rafael; Longo, Valter D.

    2010-01-01

    Conservation of normal cognitive functions relies on the proper performance of the nervous system at the cellular and molecular level. The mammalian NAD+-dependent deacetylase, SIRT1, impacts different processes potentially involved in the maintenance of brain integrity such as chromatin remodeling, DNA repair, cell survival and neurogenesis. Here we show that SIRT1 is expressed in neurons of the hippocampus, a key structure in learning and memory. Using a combination of behavioral and electrophysiological paradigms we analyzed the effects of SIRT1 deficiency and overexpression on mouse learning and memory as well as on synaptic plasticity. We demonstrated that the absence of SIRT1 impaired cognitive abilities, including immediate memory, classical conditioning and spatial learning. In addition, we found that the cognitive deficits in SIRT1 knockout mice were associated with defects in synaptic plasticity without alterations in basal synaptic transmission or NMDA receptor function. Brains of SIRT1-KO mice exhibited normal morphology and dendritic spine structure but display a decrease in dendritic branching, branch length and complexity of neuronal dendritic arbors. Also, a decrease in ERK1/2 phosphorylation and altered expression of hippocampal genes involved in synaptic function, lipid metabolism and myelination were detected in SIRT1-KO mice. In contrast, mice with high levels of SIRT1 expression in brain exhibited regular synaptic plasticity and memory. We conclude that SIRT1 is indispensable for normal learning, memory and synaptic plasticity in mice. PMID:20660252

  10. Dynamic expression of long noncoding RNAs and repeat elements in synaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Maag, Jesper L. V.; Panja, Debabrata; Sporild, Ida; Patil, Sudarshan; Kaczorowski, Dominik C.; Bramham, Clive R.; Dinger, Marcel E.; Wibrand, Karin

    2015-01-01

    Long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic transmission is recognized as a cellular mechanism for learning and memory storage. Although de novo gene transcription is known to be required in the formation of stable LTP, the molecular mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity remain elusive. Noncoding RNAs have emerged as major regulatory molecules that are abundantly and specifically expressed in the mammalian brain. By combining RNA-seq analysis with LTP induction in the dentate gyrus of live rats, we provide the first global transcriptomic analysis of synaptic plasticity in the adult brain. Expression profiles of mRNAs and long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) were obtained at 30 min, 2 and 5 h after high-frequency stimulation of the perforant pathway. The temporal analysis revealed dynamic expression profiles of lncRNAs with many positively, and highly, correlated to protein-coding genes with known roles in synaptic plasticity, suggesting their possible involvement in LTP. In light of observations suggesting a role for retrotransposons in brain function, we examined the expression of various classes of repeat elements. Our analysis identifies dynamic regulation of LINE1 and SINE retrotransposons, and extensive regulation of tRNA. These experiments reveal a hitherto unknown complexity of gene expression in long-term synaptic plasticity involving the dynamic regulation of lncRNAs and repeat elements. These findings provide a broader foundation for elucidating the transcriptional and epigenetic regulation of synaptic plasticity in both the healthy brain and in neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric disorders. PMID:26483626

  11. Neonatal sensory nerve injury-induced synaptic plasticity in the trigeminal principal sensory nucleus.

    PubMed

    Lo, Fu-Sun; Erzurumlu, Reha S

    2016-01-01

    Sensory deprivation studies in neonatal mammals, such as monocular eye closure, whisker trimming, and chemical blockade of the olfactory epithelium have revealed the importance of sensory inputs in brain wiring during distinct critical periods. But very few studies have paid attention to the effects of neonatal peripheral sensory nerve damage on synaptic wiring of the central nervous system (CNS) circuits. Peripheral somatosensory nerves differ from other special sensory afferents in that they are more prone to crush or severance because of their locations in the body. Unlike the visual and auditory afferents, these nerves show regenerative capabilities after damage. Uniquely, damage to a somatosensory peripheral nerve does not only block activity incoming from the sensory receptors but also mediates injury-induced neuro- and glial chemical signals to the brain through the uninjured central axons of the primary sensory neurons. These chemical signals can have both far more and longer lasting effects than sensory blockade alone. Here we review studies which focus on the consequences of neonatal peripheral sensory nerve damage in the principal sensory nucleus of the brainstem trigeminal complex. PMID:25956829

  12. Synaptic organization of sensory and motor neurones innervating triceps brachii muscles in the bullfrog

    PubMed Central

    Frank, Eric; Westerfield, Monte

    1982-01-01

    1. The anatomy and physiology of sensory-motor pathways were studied in the brachial spinal cord of adult bullfrogs to characterize the properties and specificity of these connexions. 2. Motoneurones innervating a given forelimb muscle are located in discrete and reproducible regions of the lateral motor column. Yet only a fraction of the motoneurones in a particular region innervates any one muscle. 3. The central projections of sensory afferent axons from the triceps muscles extend throughout the rostro-caudal length of the brachial spinal cord. Within this region these projections terminate in an area containing many motoneuronal dendrites. 4. Within the triceps motor pool sensory neurones from the triceps muscles produce monosynaptic potentials only in triceps motoneurones even though these motoneurones are mingled with motoneurones innervating other muscles. 5. Motoneurones innervating each of the three heads of the triceps muscles, medial, internal and external, receive monosynaptic input from their own, homonymous muscle head. Sensory fibres from the medial head also innervate 98% of the heteronymous motoneurones projecting to the internal or external heads, and nearly 90% of the medial triceps motoneurones are innervated by sensory axons from the other two heads. 6. Similarly, other brachial motoneurones receive monosynaptic input from sensory axons in their own muscle nerves. However, most of the synaptic potentials evoked in triceps motoneurones by stimulation of muscle nerves other than triceps are of longer latency and probably involve polysynaptic pathways. 7. Thus, the pattern of synaptic connexions between muscle sensory afferents and motoneurones in the frog's spinal cord is specific. Furthermore, comparison with homologous pathways in the cat's spinal cord suggests that the strength and pattern of these connexions are similar. ImagesPlate 2Plate 3Plate 4Plate 1 PMID:6980276

  13. Clathrin regenerates synaptic vesicles from endosomes

    PubMed Central

    Watanabe, Shigeki; Trimbuch, Thorsten; Camacho-Pérez, Marcial; Rost, Benjamin R.; Brokowski, Bettina; Söhl-Kielczynski, Berit; Felies, Annegret; Davis, M. Wayne; Rosenmund, Christian; Jorgensen, Erik M.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Ultrafast endocytosis can retrieve a single large endocytic vesicle as fast as 50-100 ms after synaptic vesicle fusion. However, the fate of the large endocytic vesicles is not known. Here we demonstrate that these vesicles transition to a synaptic endosome about one second after stimulation. The endosome is resolved into coated vesicles after 3 seconds, which in turn become small-diameter synaptic vesicles 5-6 seconds after stimulation. We disrupted clathrin function using RNAi and found that clathrin is not required for ultrafast endocytosis but is required to generate synaptic vesicles from the endosome. Ultrafast endocytosis fails when actin polymerization is disrupted, or when neurons are stimulated at room temperature instead of physiological temperature. In the absence of ultrafast endocytosis, synaptic vesicles are retrieved directly from the plasma membrane by clathrin-mediated endocytosis. These results explain in large part discrepancies among published experiments concerning the role of clathrin in synaptic vesicle endocytosis. PMID:25296249

  14. Developmental synaptic depression underlying reorganization of visceral reflex pathways in the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Araki, I; de Groat, W C

    1997-11-01

    During development, neuronal connectivity has a remarkable plasticity. Synaptic refinement in the spinal autonomic nucleus might be involved in the elimination of primitive segmental reflexes and the emergence of mature spinobulbospinal reflexes, which occurs a few weeks after birth. To address this possibility, we examined the postnatal changes of segmental excitatory synaptic transmission by applying the whole-cell recording technique to parasympathetic preganglionic neurons in slice preparations of the rat lumbosacral spinal cord. The mean magnitude of unitary excitatory synaptic currents evoked in preganglionic neurons by stimulation of single interneurons remained unchanged during the first two postnatal weeks but was reduced by 50% during the third postnatal week. This reduction in synaptic efficacy was associated with a decrease in the amount of transmitter release from interneurons. Moreover, this developmental depression of segmental synaptic transmission was prevented by spinal cord transection at the thoracic level on postnatal day 14. Thus, developmental modification of excitatory synapses on preganglionic neurons appears to be attributable to competition between segmental interneuronal and descending bulbospinal inputs, which results in the developmental reorganization of parasympathetic excretory reflex pathways. PMID:9334413

  15. Regulation of synaptic development and function by the Drosophila PDZ protein Dyschronic

    PubMed Central

    Jepson, James E. C.; Shahidullah, Mohammed; Liu, Die; le Marchand, Sylvain J.; Liu, Sha; Wu, Mark N.; Levitan, Irwin B.; Dalva, Matthew B.; Koh, Kyunghee

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic scaffold proteins control the localization of ion channels and receptors, and facilitate molecular associations between signaling components that modulate synaptic transmission and plasticity. Here, we define novel roles for a recently described scaffold protein, Dsychronic (DYSC), at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction. DYSC is the Drosophila homolog of whirlin/DFNB31, a PDZ domain protein linked to Usher syndrome, the most common form of human deaf-blindness. We show that DYSC is expressed presynaptically and is often localized adjacent to the active zone, the site of neurotransmitter release. Loss of DYSC results in marked alterations in synaptic morphology and cytoskeletal organization. Moreover, active zones are frequently enlarged and misshapen in dysc mutants. Electrophysiological analyses further demonstrate that dysc mutants exhibit substantial increases in both evoked and spontaneous synaptic transmission. We have previously shown that DYSC binds to and regulates the expression of the Slowpoke (SLO) BK potassium channel. Consistent with this, slo mutant larvae exhibit similar alterations in synapse morphology, active zone size and neurotransmission, and simultaneous loss of dysc and slo does not enhance these phenotypes, suggesting that dysc and slo act in a common genetic pathway to modulate synaptic development and output. Our data expand our understanding of the neuronal functions of DYSC and uncover non-canonical roles for the SLO potassium channel at Drosophila synapses. PMID:25359729

  16. Hydrogen sulfide determines HNO-induced stimulation of trigeminal afferents.

    PubMed

    Wild, Vanessa; Messlinger, Karl; Fischer, Michael J M

    2015-08-18

    Endogenous NO and hydrogen sulfide form HNO, which causes CGRP release via TRPA1 channel activation in sensory nerves. In the present study, stimulation of intact trigeminal afferent neuron preparations with NO donors, Na2S or both was analyzed by measuring CGRP release as an index of mass activation. Combined stimulation was able to activate all parts of the trigeminal system and acted synergistic compared to stimulation with both substances alone. To investigate the contribution of both substances, we varied their ratio and tracked intracellular calcium in isolated neurons. Our results demonstrate that hydrogen sulfide is the rate-limiting factor for HNO formation. CGRP has a key role in migraine pathophysiology and HNO formation at all sites of the trigeminal system should be considered for this novel means of activation. PMID:26149232

  17. Development of convergent synaptic inputs to subpopulations of autonomic neurons.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Rebecca L; Jobling, Phillip; Matthew, Sue E; Gibbins, Ian L

    2002-06-01

    Visceromotor neurons in mammalian prevertebral sympathetic ganglia receive convergent synaptic inputs from spinal preganglionic neurons and peripheral intestinofugal neurons projecting from the enteric plexuses. Vasomotor neurons in the same ganglia receive only preganglionic inputs. How this pathway-specific pattern of connectivity is established is unknown. We have used a combination of immunohistochemical, ultrastructural, and electrophysiological techniques to investigate the development of synaptic inputs onto visceromotor and vasomotor neurons in the celiac ganglion of guinea pigs. Functional synaptogenesis occurred primarily from early fetal (F30-F35) to midfetal (F36-F45) stages, after the neurochemical differentiation of vasomotor and visceromotor neurons but before establishment of their electrophysiological phenotypes. Intestinofugal inputs were detected only on presumptive visceromotor neurons located primarily in medial regions of the ganglion. The number of ultrastructurally identified synaptic profiles increased in parallel with functional synaptogenesis, especially in medial regions, where dendritic growth rates also were higher. However, the expression of immunoreactivity to choline acetyltransferase in the terminals of inputs was very low until late fetal stages, after functional transmission already had been established. These results show that peripheral intestinofugal neurons directly establish appropriate functional connections with their target visceromotor neurons simultaneously with the development of functional preganglionic inputs to both visceromotor and vasomotor neurons. It seems likely that synaptogenesis occurs independently of the neurochemical differentiation of the target neurons but is closely related to the pathway-specific dendritic development of those neurons. PMID:11984817

  18. Firing of Hippocampal Neurogliaform Cells Induces Suppression of Synaptic Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Li, Gengyu; Stewart, Robert; Canepari, Marco

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about how neuron firing recorded in vivo retrogradely influences synaptic strength. We injected the firing of a rat hippocampal neurogliaform cell (NGFC), a widely expressed GABAergic neuron type, detected in vivo during theta rhythm, into NGFCs of rat or neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS)-Cre-tdTomato mouse recorded in vitro. We found that the “in vivo firing pattern” produced a transient firing-induced suppression of synaptic inhibition (FSI) evoked by a presynaptic NGFC. Imaging experiments demonstrate that FSI was associated with action potential backpropagation (bAP) and a supralinear increase in dendritic Ca2+. The application of the L-type Ca2+ channel antagonist nimodipine blocked FSI. Further pharmacological experiments, such as the application of a nitric oxide-sensitive guanylyl cyclase (NO-sGC) receptor antagonist, a NOS inhibitor, and NO donors, suggested that NO released from postsynaptic cells mediated FSI and likely activated presynaptic receptors to inhibit GABA release. The in vivo firing pattern modulated the size of unitary EPSPs impinging on NGFCs through FSI and not via a direct effect on excitatory synaptic transmission. Our data demonstrate: (1) retrograde signaling initiated by in vivo firing pattern, (2) interneuron bAPs detected with fast temporal resolution, and (3) a novel role for NO expressed by specific interneuron types. PMID:24453319

  19. Hair cell tufts and afferent innervation of the bullfrog crista ampullaris

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, Steven F.; Lewis, Edwin R.

    1990-01-01

    Within the bullfrog semicircular canal crista, hair cell tuft types were defined and mapped with the aid of scanning electron microscopy. Dye-filled planar afferent axons had mean distal axonal diameters of 1.6-4.9 microns, highly branched arbors, and contacted 11-24 hair cells. Dye-filled isthmus afferent axons had mean distal axonal diameters of 1.8-7.9 microns, with either small or large field arbors contacting 4-9 or 25-31 hair cells. The estimated mean number of contacts per innervated hair cell was 2.2 for planar and 1.3 for isthmus afferent neurons. Data on evoked afferent responses were available only for isthmus units that were observed to respond to our microrotational stimuli. Of 21 such afferent neurons, eight were successfully dye-filled. Within this sample, high-gain units had large field arbors and lower-gain units had small field arbors. The sensitivity of each afferent neuron was analyzed in terms of noise equivalent input (NEI), the stimulus amplitude for which the afferent response amplitude is just equivalent to the rms deviation of the instantaneous spike rate. NEI for isthmus units varied from 0.63 to 8.2 deg/s; the mean was 3.2 deg/s.

  20. Nonvolatile programmable neural network synaptic array

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tawel, Raoul (inventor)

    1994-01-01

    A floating-gate metal oxide semiconductor (MOS) transistor is implemented for use as a nonvolatile analog storage element of a synaptic cell used to implement an array of processing synaptic cells. These cells are based on a four-quadrant analog multiplier requiring both X and Y differential inputs, where one Y input is UV programmable. These nonvolatile synaptic cells are disclosed fully connected in a 32 x 32 synaptic cell array using standard very large scale integration (VLSI) complementary MOS (CMOS) technology.

  1. Differential chemosensory function and receptor expression of splanchnic and pelvic colonic afferents in mice

    PubMed Central

    Brierley, Stuart M; Carter, R; Jones, W; Xu, Linjing; Robinson, David R; Hicks, Gareth A; Gebhart, GF; Blackshaw, L Ashley

    2005-01-01

    Lumbar splanchnic (LSN) and sacral pelvic (PN) nerves convey different mechanosensory information from the colon to the spinal cord. Here we determined whether these pathways also differ in their chemosensitivity and receptor expression. Using an in vitro mouse colon preparation, individual primary afferents were tested with selective P2X and transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor 1 (TRPV1) receptor ligands. Afferent cell bodies in thoracolumbar and lumbosacral dorsal root ganglia (DRG) were retrogradely labelled from the colon and analysed for P2X3- and TRPV1-like immunoreactivity (LI). Forty per cent of LSN afferents responded to ?,?-methylene adenosine 5?-triphosphate (?,?-meATP; 1 mm), an effect that was concentration dependent and reversed by the P2X antagonist pyridoxyl5-phosphate 6-azophenyl-2?,4?-disulphonic acid (PPADS) (100 ?m). Significantly fewer PN afferents (7%) responded to ?,?-meATP. Correspondingly, 36% of colonic thoracolumbar DRG neurones exhibited P2X3-LI compared with only 19% of colonic lumbosacral neurones. Capsaicin (3 ?m) excited 61% of LSN afferents and 47% of PN afferents; 82% of thoracolumbar and 50% of lumbosacral colonic DRG neurones displayed TRPV1-LI. Mechanically insensitive afferents were recruited by ?,?-meATP or capsaicin, and were almost exclusive to the LSN. Capsaicin-responsive LSN afferents displayed marked mechanical desensitization after responding to capsaicin, which did not occur in capsaicin-responsive PN afferents. Therefore, colonic LSN and PN pathways differ in their chemosensitivity to known noxious stimuli and their corresponding receptor expression. As these pathways relay information that may relate to symptoms in functional gastrointestinal disease, these results may have implications for the efficacy of therapies targeting receptor modulation. PMID:15946967

  2. Interneurones mediating presynaptic inhibition of group II muscle afferents in the cat spinal cord.

    PubMed Central

    Jankowska, E; Riddell, J S

    1995-01-01

    1. To investigate whether dorsal horn interneurones with input from group II muscle afferents induce depolarization of sensory fibres, simultaneous recordings were made from single interneurones in the sacral segments and from sacral dorsal root filaments using the spike-triggered averaging technique. 2. The spike potentials of eighteen out of thirty-eight interneurones tested were followed by dorsal root potentials (DRPs). The DRPs occurred at latencies of 2 and 6-8 ms. Interneurones evoking DRPs at latencies of up to 2 ms are considered likely to be last-order interneurones in pathways of presynaptic inhibition, while those inducing DRPs at longer latencies are considered likely to be first-order interneurones. The former were activated by peripheral afferents with somewhat longer latencies than the latter. However, all interneurones were co-activated by group II muscle and cutaneous afferents, indicating that the depolarization of group II muscle afferents, which these afferents induce, may be mediated by the same interneurones. 3. DRPs evoked by electrical stimulation of peripheral nerves were recorded from both sacral and midlumbar dorsal root filaments. The amplitudes of these DRPs were closely related to the potency with which group II afferents of various nerves activate dorsal horn interneurones in the sacral and midlumbar segments and group II afferents contributed to them more effectively than group I afferents. The second stimulus in a train was more effective than the first, while a third stimulus had little additional effect, indicating that the interneurones involved are relatively easily activated. 4. Intraspinal stimuli applied within the dorsal horn, at the sites where the largest field potentials of group II origin were recorded, evoked distinct DRPs. However, the location of the first- and last-order interneurones in pathways of primary afferent depolarization (PAD) could not be differentiated by this approach because the same stimuli induced positive potentials, which masked the onset of DRPs and precluded localization of the sites from which DRPs might be evoked monosynaptically. PMID:7650613

  3. On the origin of presynaptic depolarization of group I muscle afferents in Clarke's column in the cat.

    PubMed

    Jankowska, E; Padel, Y

    1984-03-19

    The origin of presynaptic depolarization of group I afferents in Clarke's column has been re-investigated, using changes in excitability of single fibres as a measure of their depolarization. In contrast to the previously reported lack of effects following conditioning stimulation of group Ia afferents, these afferents have been found to increase the excitability of other group Ia afferent terminals in Clarke's column. Flexor Ia and Ib afferents were found to be more effective than extensor afferents. The group I origin of the presynaptic depolarization of group I afferents in Clarke's column thus appears to be as of other terminals of these afferents. In order to define the location of interneurones mediating primary afferent depolarization in Clarke's column, changes in the excitability of afferents in Clarke's column were measured after isolating L4 and more rostral segments from the sacral and caudal lumbar segments, except for the dorsal columns, or after transection of ipsilateral lateral and ventral funiculi. Primary afferent depolarization of group Ia, or unspecified group I origin, was also found after such lesions and its effectiveness appeared to be as in intact preparations. It may thus be evoked primarily by interneurones located in the same segments as Clarke's column. PMID:6713181

  4. Presynaptic Active Zone Density during Development and Synaptic Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Clarke, Gwenaëlle L; Chen, Jie; Nishimune, Hiroshi

    2012-01-01

    Neural circuits transmit information through synapses, and the efficiency of synaptic transmission is closely related to the density of presynaptic active zones, where synaptic vesicles are released. The goal of this review is to highlight recent insights into the molecular mechanisms that control the number of active zones per presynaptic terminal (active zone density) during developmental and stimulus-dependent changes in synaptic efficacy. At the neuromuscular junctions (NMJs), the active zone density is preserved across species, remains constant during development, and is the same between synapses with different activities. However, the NMJ active zones are not always stable, as exemplified by the change in active zone density during acute experimental manipulation or as a result of aging. Therefore, a mechanism must exist to maintain its density. In the central nervous system (CNS), active zones have restricted maximal size, exist in multiple numbers in larger presynaptic terminals, and maintain a constant density during development. These findings suggest that active zone density in the CNS is also controlled. However, in contrast to the NMJ, active zone density in the CNS can also be increased, as observed in hippocampal synapses in response to synaptic plasticity. Although the numbers of known active zone proteins and protein interactions have increased, less is known about the mechanism that controls the number or spacing of active zones. The following molecules are known to control active zone density and will be discussed herein: extracellular matrix laminins and voltage-dependent calcium channels, amyloid precursor proteins, the small GTPase Rab3, an endocytosis mechanism including synaptojanin, cytoskeleton protein spectrins and ?-adducin, and a presynaptic web including spectrins. The molecular mechanisms that organize the active zone density are just beginning to be elucidated. PMID:22438837

  5. Presynaptic Active Zone Density during Development and Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Clarke, Gwenaëlle L.; Chen, Jie; Nishimune, Hiroshi

    2012-01-01

    Neural circuits transmit information through synapses, and the efficiency of synaptic transmission is closely related to the density of presynaptic active zones, where synaptic vesicles are released. The goal of this review is to highlight recent insights into the molecular mechanisms that control the number of active zones per presynaptic terminal (active zone density) during developmental and stimulus-dependent changes in synaptic efficacy. At the neuromuscular junctions (NMJs), the active zone density is preserved across species, remains constant during development, and is the same between synapses with different activities. However, the NMJ active zones are not always stable, as exemplified by the change in active zone density during acute experimental manipulation or as a result of aging. Therefore, a mechanism must exist to maintain its density. In the central nervous system (CNS), active zones have restricted maximal size, exist in multiple numbers in larger presynaptic terminals, and maintain a constant density during development. These findings suggest that active zone density in the CNS is also controlled. However, in contrast to the NMJ, active zone density in the CNS can also be increased, as observed in hippocampal synapses in response to synaptic plasticity. Although the numbers of known active zone proteins and protein interactions have increased, less is known about the mechanism that controls the number or spacing of active zones. The following molecules are known to control active zone density and will be discussed herein: extracellular matrix laminins and voltage-dependent calcium channels, amyloid precursor proteins, the small GTPase Rab3, an endocytosis mechanism including synaptojanin, cytoskeleton protein spectrins and ?-adducin, and a presynaptic web including spectrins. The molecular mechanisms that organize the active zone density are just beginning to be elucidated. PMID:22438837

  6. Associate editor: K.W. Roche Synaptic plasticity and phosphorylation

    E-print Network

    Lee, Hey-Kyoung

    Associate editor: K.W. Roche Synaptic plasticity and phosphorylation Hey-Kyoung Lee Department, United States Abstract A number of neuronal functions, including synaptic plasticity, depend on proper kinase and protein phosphatase activity. Recent understanding of synaptic plasticity mechanisms

  7. Real-time Monitoring of Discrete Synaptic Release Events and Excitatory Potentials within Self-reconstructed Neuromuscular Junctions.

    PubMed

    Li, Yu-Tao; Zhang, Shu-Hui; Wang, Xue-Ying; Zhang, Xin-Wei; Oleinick, Alexander I; Svir, Irina; Amatore, Christian; Huang, Wei-Hua

    2015-08-01

    Chemical synaptic transmission is central to the brain functions. In this regard, real-time monitoring of chemical synaptic transmission during neuronal communication remains a great challenge. In this work, in?vivo-like oriented neural networks between superior cervical ganglion (SCG) neurons and their effector smooth muscle cells (SMC) were assembled in a microfluidic device. This allowed amperometric detection of individual neurotransmitter release events inside functional SCG-SMC synapse with carbon fiber nanoelectrodes as well as recording of postsynaptic potential using glass nanopipette electrodes. The high vesicular release activities essentially involved complex events arising from flickering fusion pores as quantitatively established based on simulations. This work allowed for the first time monitoring in?situ chemical synaptic transmission under conditions close to those found in?vivo, which may yield important and new insights into the nature of neuronal communications. PMID:26079517

  8. Erk1/2 inhibit synaptic vesicle exocytosis through L type calcium channels

    PubMed Central

    Subramanian, Jaichandar; Morozov, Alexei

    2011-01-01

    L type calcium channels play only a minor role in basal neurotransmitter release in brain neurons, but contribute significantly after induction of plasticity. Very little is known about mechanisms that enable L type calcium channel participation in neurotransmitter release. Here, using mouse primary cortical neurons, we found that inhibition of Erk1/2 enhanced synaptic vesicle exocytosis by increasing calcium influx through L type calcium channels. Furthermore, inhibition of Erk1/2 increased the surface fraction of these channels. These findings indicate a novel inhibitory effect of Erk1/2 on synaptic transmission through L type calcium channels. PMID:21430174

  9. Working Memory Impairment in Calcineurin Knock-out Mice Is Associated with Alterations in Synaptic Vesicle Cycling and Disruption of High-Frequency Synaptic and Network Activity in Prefrontal Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Cottrell, Jeffrey R.; Levenson, Jonathan M.; Kim, Sung Hyun; Gibson, Helen E.; Richardson, Kristen A.; Sivula, Michael; Li, Bing; Ashford, Crystle J.; Heindl, Karen A.; Babcock, Ryan J.; Rose, David M.; Hempel, Chris M.; Wiig, Kjesten A.; Laeng, Pascal; Levin, Margaret E.; Ryan, Timothy A.

    2013-01-01

    Working memory is an essential component of higher cognitive function, and its impairment is a core symptom of multiple CNS disorders, including schizophrenia. Neuronal mechanisms supporting working memory under normal conditions have been described and include persistent, high-frequency activity of prefrontal cortical neurons. However, little is known about the molecular and cellular basis of working memory dysfunction in the context of neuropsychiatric disorders. To elucidate synaptic and neuronal mechanisms of working memory dysfunction, we have performed a comprehensive analysis of a mouse model of schizophrenia, the forebrain-specific calcineurin knock-out mouse. Biochemical analyses of cortical tissue from these mice revealed a pronounced hyperphosphorylation of synaptic vesicle cycling proteins known to be necessary for high-frequency synaptic transmission. Examination of the synaptic vesicle cycle in calcineurin-deficient neurons demonstrated an impairment of vesicle release enhancement during periods of intense stimulation. Moreover, brain slice and in vivo electrophysiological analyses showed that loss of calcineurin leads to a gene dose-dependent disruption of high-frequency synaptic transmission and network activity in the PFC, correlating with selective working memory impairment. Finally, we showed that levels of dynamin I, a key presynaptic protein and calcineurin substrate, are significantly reduced in prefrontal cortical samples from schizophrenia patients, extending the disease relevance of our findings. Our data provide support for a model in which impaired synaptic vesicle cycling represents a critical node for disease pathologies underlying the cognitive deficits in schizophrenia. PMID:23825400

  10. Copper signaling in the mammalian nervous system: synaptic effects

    PubMed Central

    Gaier, ED; Eipper, BA; Mains, RE

    2014-01-01

    Copper (Cu) is an essential metal present at high levels in the CNS. Its role as a co-factor in mitochondrial ATP production and in other essential cuproenzymes is well defined. Menkes and Wilson’s diseases are severe neurodegenerative conditions that demonstrate the importance of Cu transport into the secretory pathway. Brain levels of Cu, which is almost entirely protein bound, exceed extracellular levels by more than a hundred-fold. Cu stored in the secretory pathway is released in a Ca2+-dependent manner and can transiently reach concentrations over 100 µM at synapses. The ability of low µM levels of Cu to bind to and modulate the function of ?-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptors, N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors and voltage-gated Ca2+ channels contributes to its effects on synaptic transmission. Cu also binds to amyloid precursor protein and prion protein; both proteins are found at synapses and brain Cu homeostasis is disrupted in mice lacking either protein. Especially intriguing is the ability of Cu to affect AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), a monitor of cellular energy status. Despite this, few investigators have examined the direct effects of Cu on synaptic transmission and plasticity. Although the variability of results demonstrates complex influences of Cu that are highly method-sensitive, these studies nevertheless strongly support important roles for endogenous Cu and new roles for Cu-binding proteins in synaptic function/plasticity and behavior. Further study of the many roles of Cu in nervous system function will reveal targets for intervention in other diseases in which Cu homeostasis is disrupted. PMID:23115049

  11. Age Dependent Nicotinic Influences over Dopamine Neuron Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Placzek, Andon N.; Zhang, Tao A.; Dani, John A.

    2009-01-01

    A relatively low in vivo dose of nicotine induces long-term potentiation in midbrain dopaminergic neurons in young mice, but not in adults. The dopamine (DA) system of the ventral midbrain plays a critical role as mammals learn adaptive behaviors driven by environmental salience and reward. Addictive drugs, including nicotine, exert powerful influences over the mesolimbic DA system by activating and desensitizing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in a subtype-dependent manner. Nicotine induces synaptic plasticity at excitatory synapses onto DA neurons, thereby sending elevated DA signals that participate during the reinforcement of addictive behaviors. While humans and animals of any developmental age are potentially vulnerable to these drug-induced effects, evidence from clinical and epidemiological studies indicates that adolescents have an increased risk of addiction. Although this risk arises from a complex set of variables including societal and psychosocial influences, a contributing factor involves age-dependent sensitivity to addictive drugs. One aspect of that sensitivity is drug-induced synaptic plasticity at excitatory synapses onto the dopamine neurons in the ventral midbrain. A single, acute exposure to addictive drugs, including nicotine, produces long term potentiation (LTP) that can be quantified by measuring the shift in the subtypes of ionotropic glutamate receptors mediating evoked synaptic transmission. This change in glutamatergic transmission is expressed as an increased ratio of AMPA receptors to NMDA receptors at glutamatergic synapses. Age-related differences in the excitability and the nicotine sensitivity within the midbrain dopamine system may contribute to the greater risk of nicotine addiction in adolescent animals and humans. PMID:19464268

  12. Nitric oxide regulates synaptic transmission between spiny projection neurons

    E-print Network

    Sagi, Yotam

    Recurrent axon collaterals are a major means of communication between spiny projection neurons (SPNs) in the striatum and profoundly affect the function of the basal ganglia. However, little is known about the molecular ...

  13. DEVELOPMENTAL HYPOTHYROIDISM IMPAIRS HIPPOCAMPAL LEARNING AND SYNAPTIC TRANSMISSION IN VIVO.

    EPA Science Inventory

    A number of environmental chemicals have been reported to alter thyroid hormone (TH) function. It is well established that severe hypothyroidism during critical periods of brain development leads to alterations in hippocampal structure and learning deficits, yet evaluation of ...

  14. Nootropic dipeptide noopept enhances inhibitory synaptic transmission in the hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Povarov, I S; Kondratenko, R V; Derevyagin, V I; Ostrovskaya, R U; Skrebitskii, V G

    2015-01-01

    Application of nootropic agent Noopept on hippocampal slices from Wistar rats enhanced the inhibitory component of total current induced by stimulation of Shaffer collaterals in CA1 pyramidal neurons, but did not affect the excitatory component. A direct correlation between the increase in the amplitude of inhibitory current and agent concentration was found. The substance did not affect the release of inhibitory transmitters from terminals in the pyramidal neurons, which indicated changes in GABAergic interneurons. PMID:25573367

  15. Serotonin and Synaptic Transmission at Invertebrate Neuromuscular Junctions

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Wen-Hui

    2012-01-01

    The serotonergic system in vertebrates and invertebrates has been a focus for over 50 years and will likely continue in the future. Recently, genomic analysis and discovery of alternative splicing and differential expression in tissues have increased the knowledge of serotonin (5-HT) receptor types. Comparative studies can provide useful insights to the wide variety of mechanistic actions of 5-HT responsible for behaviors regulated or modified by 5-HT. To determine cellular responses and influences on neural systems as well as the efferent control of behaviors by the motor units, preparations amenable to detailed studies of synapses are beneficial as working models. The invertebrate neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) offer some unique advantages for such investigations; action of 5-HT at crustacean NMJs has been widely studied, and leech and Aplysia continue to be key organisms. However, there are few studies in insects likely due to the focus in modulation within the CNS and lack of evidence of substantial action of 5-HT at the Drosophila NMJs. There are only a few reports in gastropods and annelids as well as other invertebrates. In this review we highlight some of the key findings of 5-HT actions and receptor types associated at NMJs in a variety of invertebrate preparations in hopes that future studies will build on this knowledge base. PMID:23055788

  16. Posttetanic enhancement of striato-pallidal synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Kim, Juhyon; Kita, Hitoshi

    2015-07-01

    The striato (Str)-globus pallidus external segment (GPe) projection plays major roles in the control of neuronal activity in the basal ganglia under both normal and pathological conditions. The present study used rat brain slice preparations to characterize the enhancement of Str-GPe synapses observed after repetitive conditioning stimuli (CS) of Str with the whole cell patch-clamp recording technique. The results show that 1) the Str-GPe synapses have a posttetanic enhancement (PTE) mechanism, which is considered to be a combination of an augmentation and a posttetanic potentiation; 2) the degree of PTE observed in GPe neurons had a wide range and was positively correlated with a wide range of paired-pulse ratios assessed before application of CS; 3) a wide range of CS, from frequencies as low as 2 Hz with as few as 5 pulses to as high as 100 Hz with 100 pulses, could induce PTE; 4) the decay time constant of PTE was dependent on the strength of CS and was prolonged greatly, up to 120 s, when strong CS were applied; and 5) the level of postsynaptic Cl(-) became a limiting factor for the degree of PTE when strong CS were applied. These results imply that Str-GPe synapses transmit inhibitions in a nonlinear activity-weighted manner, which may be suited for scaling timing and force of repeated or sequential body movements. Other possible factors controlling the induction of PTE and functional implications are also discussed. PMID:25995348

  17. Spontaneous vesicle recycling in the synaptic bouton

    PubMed Central

    Truckenbrodt, Sven; Rizzoli, Silvio O.

    2014-01-01

    The trigger for synaptic vesicle exocytosis is Ca2+, which enters the synaptic bouton following action potential stimulation. However, spontaneous release of neurotransmitter also occurs in the absence of stimulation in virtually all synaptic boutons. It has long been thought that this represents exocytosis driven by fluctuations in local Ca2+ levels. The vesicles responding to these fluctuations are thought to be the same ones that release upon stimulation, albeit potentially triggered by different Ca2+ sensors. This view has been challenged by several recent works, which have suggested that spontaneous release is driven by a separate pool of synaptic vesicles. Numerous articles appeared during the last few years in support of each of these hypotheses, and it has been challenging to bring them into accord. We speculate here on the origins of this controversy, and propose a solution that is related to developmental effects. Constitutive membrane traffic, needed for the biogenesis of vesicles and synapses, is responsible for high levels of spontaneous membrane fusion in young neurons, probably independent of Ca2+. The vesicles releasing spontaneously in such neurons are not related to other synaptic vesicle pools and may represent constitutively releasing vesicles (CRVs) rather than bona fide synaptic vesicles. In mature neurons, constitutive traffic is much dampened, and the few remaining spontaneous release events probably represent bona fide spontaneously releasing synaptic vesicles (SRSVs) responding to Ca2+ fluctuations, along with a handful of CRVs that participate in synaptic vesicle turnover. PMID:25538561

  18. Neuronal thresholds and choice-related activity of otolith afferent fibers during heading perception

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xiong-jie; Dickman, J. David; DeAngelis, Gregory C.; Angelaki, Dora E.

    2015-01-01

    How activity of sensory neurons leads to perceptual decisions remains a challenge to understand. Correlations between choices and single neuron firing rates have been found early in vestibular processing, in the brainstem and cerebellum. To investigate the origins of choice-related activity, we have recorded from otolith afferent fibers while animals performed a fine heading discrimination task. We find that afferent fibers have similar discrimination thresholds as central cells, and the most sensitive fibers have thresholds that are only twofold or threefold greater than perceptual thresholds. Unlike brainstem and cerebellar nuclei neurons, spike counts from afferent fibers do not exhibit trial-by-trial correlations with perceptual decisions. This finding may reflect the fact that otolith afferent responses are poorly suited for driving heading perception because they fail to discriminate self-motion from changes in orientation relative to gravity. Alternatively, if choice probabilities reflect top-down inference signals, they are not relayed to the vestibular periphery. PMID:25941358

  19. Information about Complex Fingertip Parameters in Individual Human Tactile Afferent Neurons 

    E-print Network

    Saal, Hannes; Vijayakumar, Sethu; Johansson, Roland

    2009-01-01

    Although information in tactile afferent neurons represented by firing rates has been studied extensively over nearly a century, recent studies suggest that precise spike timing might be more important than firing rates. ...

  20. Response properties of gerbil otolith afferents to small angle pitch and roll tilts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dickman, J. D.; Angelaki, D. E.; Correia, M. J.

    1991-01-01

    The responses from isolated single otolith afferent fibers were obtained to small angle sinusoidal pitch and roll tilts in anesthetized gerbils. The stimulus directions that produced the maximum (response vector) and minimum response sensitivities were determined for each otolith afferent, with response vectors for the units being spread throughout the horizontal plane, similar to those reported for other species. A breadth of tuning measure was derived, with narrowly tuned neurons responding maximally to stimulation in one direction and minimally along an orthogonal ('null') direction. Most (approximately 80%) otolith afferents are narrowly tuned, however, some fibers were broadly tuned responding significantly to stimulations in any direction in the horizontal plane. The number of broadly tuned otolith afferents (approximately 20%) differs significantly from the more substantial number of broadly tuned vestibular nuclei neurons (88%) recently reported in rats.

  1. Bidirectional Control of Synaptic GABAAR Clustering by Glutamate and Calcium.

    PubMed

    Bannai, Hiroko; Niwa, Fumihiro; Sherwood, Mark W; Shrivastava, Amulya Nidhi; Arizono, Misa; Miyamoto, Akitoshi; Sugiura, Kotomi; Lévi, Sabine; Triller, Antoine; Mikoshiba, Katsuhiko

    2015-12-29

    GABAergic synaptic transmission regulates brain function by establishing the appropriate excitation-inhibition (E/I) balance in neural circuits. The structure and function of GABAergic synapses are sensitive to destabilization by impinging neurotransmitters. However, signaling mechanisms that promote the restorative homeostatic stabilization of GABAergic synapses remain unknown. Here, by quantum dot single-particle tracking, we characterize a signaling pathway that promotes the stability of GABAA receptor (GABAAR) postsynaptic organization. Slow metabotropic glutamate receptor signaling activates IP3 receptor-dependent calcium release and protein kinase C to promote GABAAR clustering and GABAergic transmission. This GABAAR stabilization pathway counteracts the rapid cluster dispersion caused by glutamate-driven NMDA receptor-dependent calcium influx and calcineurin dephosphorylation, including in conditions of pathological glutamate toxicity. These findings show that glutamate activates distinct receptors and spatiotemporal patterns of calcium signaling for opposing control of GABAergic synapses. PMID:26711343

  2. The Arc of synaptic memory

    PubMed Central

    Alme, Maria N.; Bittins, Margarethe; Kuipers, Sjoukje D.; Nair, Rajeevkumar R.; Pai, Balagopal; Panja, Debabrata; Schubert, Manja; Soule, Jonathan; Tiron, Adrian; Wibrand, Karin

    2009-01-01

    The immediate early gene Arc is emerging as a versatile, finely tuned system capable of coupling changes in neuronal activity patterns to synaptic plasticity, thereby optimizing information storage in the nervous system. Here, we attempt to overview the Arc system spanning from transcriptional regulation of the Arc gene, to dendritic transport, metabolism, and translation of Arc mRNA, to post-translational modification, localization, and degradation of Arc protein. Within this framework we discuss the function of Arc in regulation of actin cytoskeletal dynamics underlying consolidation of long-term potentiation (LTP) and regulation of AMPA-type glutamate receptor endocytosis underlying long-term depression (LTD) and homeostatic plasticity. Behaviorally, Arc has a key role in consolidation of explicit and implicit forms of memory, with recent work implicating Arc in adaptation to stress as well as maladaptive plasticity connected to drug addiction. Arc holds considerable promise as a “master regulator” of protein synthesis-dependent forms of synaptic plasticity, but the mechanisms that modulate and switch Arc function are only beginning to be elucidated. PMID:19690847

  3. Programmable synaptic chip for electronic neural networks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moopenn, A.; Langenbacher, H.; Thakoor, A. P.; Khanna, S. K.

    1988-01-01

    A binary synaptic matrix chip has been developed for electronic neural networks. The matrix chip contains a programmable 32X32 array of 'long channel' NMOSFET binary connection elements implemented in a 3-micron bulk CMOS process. Since the neurons are kept off-chip, the synaptic chip serves as a 'cascadable' building block for a multi-chip synaptic network as large as 512X512 in size. As an alternative to the programmable NMOSFET (long channel) connection elements, tailored thin film resistors are deposited, in series with FET switches, on some CMOS test chips, to obtain the weak synaptic connections. Although deposition and patterning of the resistors require additional processing steps, they promise substantial savings in silicon area. The performance of synaptic chip in a 32-neuron breadboard system in an associative memory test application is discussed.

  4. Innervation of enteric mast cells by primary spinal afferents in guinea pig and human small intestine.

    PubMed

    Wang, Guo-Du; Wang, Xi-Yu; Liu, Sumei; Qu, Meihua; Xia, Yun; Needleman, Bradley J; Mikami, Dean J; Wood, Jackie D

    2014-10-01

    Mast cells express the substance P (SP) neurokinin 1 receptor and the calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) receptor in guinea pig and human small intestine. Enzyme-linked immunoassay showed that activation of intramural afferents by antidromic electrical stimulation or by capsaicin released SP and CGRP from human and guinea pig intestinal segments. Electrical stimulation of the afferents evoked slow excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) in the enteric nervous system. The slow EPSPs were mediated by tachykinin neurokinin 1 and CGRP receptors. Capsaicin evoked slow EPSP-like responses that were suppressed by antagonists for protease-activated receptor 2. Afferent stimulation evoked slow EPSP-like excitation that was suppressed by mast cell-stabilizing drugs. Histamine and mast cell protease II were released by 1) exposure to SP or CGRP, 2) capsaicin, 3) compound 48/80, 4) elevation of mast cell Ca²? by ionophore A23187, and 5) antidromic electrical stimulation of afferents. The mast cell stabilizers cromolyn and doxantrazole suppressed release of protease II and histamine when evoked by SP, CGRP, capsaicin, A23187, electrical stimulation of afferents, or compound 48/80. Neural blockade by tetrodotoxin prevented mast cell protease II release in response to antidromic electrical stimulation of mesenteric afferents. The results support a hypothesis that afferent innervation of enteric mast cells releases histamine and mast cell protease II, both of which are known to act in a diffuse paracrine manner to influence the behavior of enteric nervous system neurons and to elevate the sensitivity of spinal afferent terminals. PMID:25147231

  5. Management of afferent loop obstruction: Reoperation or endoscopic and percutaneous interventions?

    PubMed Central

    Blouhos, Konstantinos; Boulas, Konstantinos Andreas; Tsalis, Konstantinos; Hatzigeorgiadis, Anestis

    2015-01-01

    Afferent loop obstruction is a purely mechanical complication that infrequently occurs following construction of a gastrojejunostomy. The operations most commonly associated with this complication are gastrectomy with Billroth II or Roux-en-Y reconstruction, and pancreaticoduodenectomy with conventional loop or Roux-en-Y reconstruction. Etiology of afferent loop obstruction includes: (1) entrapment, compression and kinking by postoperative adhesions; (2) internal herniation, volvulus and intussusception; (3) stenosis due to ulceration at the gastrojejunostomy site and radiation enteritis of the afferent loop; (4) cancer recurrence; and (5) enteroliths, bezoars and foreign bodies. Acute afferent loop obstruction is associated with complete obstruction of the afferent loop and represents a surgical emergency, whereas chronic afferent loop obstruction is associated with partial obstruction. Abdominal multiple detector computed tomography is the diagnostic study of choice. CT appearance of the obstructed afferent loop consists of a C-shaped, fluid-filled tubular mass located in the midline between the abdominal aorta and the superior mesenteric artery with valvulae conniventes projecting into the lumen. The cornerstone of treatment is surgery. Surgery includes: (1) adhesiolysis and reconstruction for benign causes; and (2) by-pass or excision and reconstruction for malignant causes. However, endoscopic enteral stenting, transhepatic percutaneous enteral stenting and direct percutaneous tube enterostomy have the principal role in management of malignant and radiation-induced obstruction. Nevertheless, considerable limitations exist as a former Roux-en-Y reconstruction limits endoscopic access to the afferent loop and percutaneous approaches for enteral stenting and tube enterostomy have only been reported in the literature as isolated cases. PMID:26425267

  6. Elements of a neurobiological theory of the hippocampus: the role of activity-dependent synaptic plasticity in memory.

    PubMed Central

    Morris, R G M; Moser, E I; Riedel, G; Martin, S J; Sandin, J; Day, M; O'Carroll, C

    2003-01-01

    The hypothesis that synaptic plasticity is a critical component of the neural mechanisms underlying learning and memory is now widely accepted. In this article, we begin by outlining four criteria for evaluating the 'synaptic plasticity and memory (SPM)' hypothesis. We then attempt to lay the foundations for a specific neurobiological theory of hippocampal (HPC) function in which activity-dependent synaptic plasticity, such as long-term potentiation (LTP), plays a key part in the forms of memory mediated by this brain structure. HPC memory can, like other forms of memory, be divided into four processes: encoding, storage, consolidation and retrieval. We argue that synaptic plasticity is critical for the encoding and intermediate storage of memory traces that are automatically recorded in the hippocampus. These traces decay, but are sometimes retained by a process of cellular consolidation. However, we also argue that HPC synaptic plasticity is not involved in memory retrieval, and is unlikely to be involved in systems-level consolidation that depends on HPC-neocortical interactions, although neocortical synaptic plasticity does play a part. The information that has emerged from the worldwide focus on the mechanisms of induction and expression of plasticity at individual synapses has been very valuable in functional studies. Progress towards a comprehensive understanding of memory processing will also depend on the analysis of these synaptic changes within the context of a wider range of systems-level and cellular mechanisms of neuronal transmission and plasticity. PMID:12744273

  7. Synaptic potentiation onto habenula neurons in the learned helplessness model of depression

    SciTech Connect

    Li, B.; Schulz, D.; Li, B; Piriz, J.; Mirrione, M.; Chung, C.H.; Proulx, C.D.; Schulz, D.; Henn, F.; Malinow, R.

    2011-02-24

    The cellular basis of depressive disorders is poorly understood. Recent studies in monkeys indicate that neurons in the lateral habenula (LHb), a nucleus that mediates communication between forebrain and midbrain structures, can increase their activity when an animal fails to receive an expected positive reward or receives a stimulus that predicts aversive conditions (that is, disappointment or anticipation of a negative outcome). LHb neurons project to, and modulate, dopamine-rich regions, such as the ventral tegmental area (VTA), that control reward-seeking behaviour and participate in depressive disorders. Here we show that in two learned helplessness models of depression, excitatory synapses onto LHb neurons projecting to the VTA are potentiated. Synaptic potentiation correlates with an animal's helplessness behaviour and is due to an enhanced presynaptic release probability. Depleting transmitter release by repeated electrical stimulation of LHb afferents, using a protocol that can be effective for patients who are depressed, markedly suppresses synaptic drive onto VTA-projecting LHb neurons in brain slices and can significantly reduce learned helplessness behaviour in rats. Our results indicate that increased presynaptic action onto LHb neurons contributes to the rodent learned helplessness model of depression.

  8. Rapid turnover of spinules at synaptic terminals.

    PubMed

    Tao-Cheng, J-H; Dosemeci, A; Gallant, P E; Miller, S; Galbraith, J A; Winters, C A; Azzam, R; Reese, T S

    2009-04-21

    Spinules found in brain consist of small invaginations of plasma membranes which enclose membrane evaginations from adjacent cells. Here, we focus on the dynamic properties of the most common type, synaptic spinules, which reside in synaptic terminals. In order to test whether depolarization triggers synaptic spinule formation, hippocampal slice cultures (7-day-old rats, 10-14 days in culture) were exposed to high K+ for 0.5-5 min, and examined by electron microscopy. Virtually no synaptic spinules were found in control slices representing a basal state, but numerous spinules appeared at both excitatory and inhibitory synapses after treatment with high K+. Spinule formation peaked with approximately 1 min treatment at 37 degrees C, decreased with prolonged treatment, and disappeared after 1-2 min of washout in normal medium. The rate of disappearance of spinules was substantially slower at 4 degrees C. N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) treatment also induced synaptic spinule formation, but to a lesser extent than high K+ depolarization. In acute brain slices prepared from adult mice, synaptic spinules were abundant immediately after dissection at 4 degrees C, extremely rare in slices allowed to recover at 28 degrees C, but frequent after high K(+) depolarization. High pressure freezing of acute brain slices followed by freeze-substitution demonstrated that synaptic spinules are not induced by chemical fixation. These results indicate that spinules are absent in synapses at low levels of activity, but form and disappear quickly during sustained synaptic activity. The rapid turnover of synaptic spinules may represent an aspect of membrane retrieval during synaptic activity. PMID:19248820

  9. Variability of postsynaptic responses depends non-linearly on the number of synaptic inputs.

    PubMed

    Kretzberg, Jutta; Sejnowski, Terrence; Warzecha, Anne-Kathrin; Egelhaaf, Martin

    2003-06-01

    A conductance-based model for synaptic transmission and postsynaptic integration reveals how postsynaptic responses and their variability depend on the number of synaptic inputs. With increasing number of balanced stochastic excitatory and inhibitory inputs, the postsynaptic responses and their variance first increase and then decrease again. This non-linearity can be attributed to an anti-correlation between the total excitatory and inhibitory currents. The anti-correlation, which occurs even though the conductances of the individual synapses vary independently of each other, is determined by the total synaptic conductance and grows with the number of inputs. As the number of inputs increases, the membrane potential comes increasingly closer to the resting level. PMID:20871738

  10. Coarse topographic organization of pheromone-sensitive afferents from different antennal surfaces in the American cockroach.

    PubMed

    Nishino, Hiroshi; Watanabe, Hidehiro; Kamimura, Itsuro; Yokohari, Fumio; Mizunami, Makoto

    2015-05-19

    In contrast to visual, auditory, taste, and mechanosensory neuropils, in which sensory afferents are topographically organized on the basis of their peripheral soma locations, axons of cognate sensory neurons from different locations of the olfactory sense organ converge onto a small spherical neuropil (glomerulus) in the first-order olfactory center. In the cockroach Periplaneta americana, sex pheromone-sensitive afferents with somata in the antero-dorsal and postero-ventral surfaces of a long whip-like antenna are biased toward the anterior and posterior regions of a macroglomerulus, respectively. In each region, afferents with somata in the more proximal antenna project to more proximal region, relative to the axonal entry points. However, precise topography of afferents in the macroglomerulus has remained unknown. Using single and multiple neuronal stainings, we showed that afferents arising from anterior, dorsal, ventral and posterior surfaces of the proximal regions of an antenna were biased progressively from the anterior to posterior region of the macroglomerulus, reflecting chiasmatic axonal re-arrangements that occur immediately before entering the antennal lobe. Morphologies of individual afferents originating from the proximal antenna matched results of mass neuronal stainings, but their three-dimensional origins in the antenna were hardly predictable on the basis of the projection patterns. Such projection biases made by neuronal populations differ from strict somatotopic projections of antennal mechanosensory neurons in the same species, suggesting a unique sensory mechanism to process information about odor location and direction on a single antenna. PMID:25849528

  11. Classification of longissimus lumborum muscle spindle afferents in the anaesthetized cat.

    PubMed

    Durbaba, R; Taylor, A; Ellaway, P H; Rawlinson, S

    2006-03-01

    Recordings have been made from 127 single muscle spindle afferents from the longissimus lumborum muscles of anaesthetized cats. They have been characterized by their responses to passive muscle stretch and the effects of succinylcholine (SCh) and by their sensitivity to vibration. The use of SCh permitted the assessment for each afferent of the influence of bag1 (b1) and bag2 (b2) intrafusal muscle fibres. From this, on the assumption that all afferents were affected by chain (c) fibres, they were classified in four groups: b1b2c (41.9%), b2c (51.4%), b1c (1.3%) and c (5.4%). All the afferents with b1 influence were able to respond one to one to vibration at frequencies above 100 Hz and were considered to belong to primary endings. On the basis of the vibration test, 64% of the b2c type afferents appeared to be primaries and 36% secondaries. Of the units classified as primaries, 41% were designated as b2c and would not therefore be able to respond to dynamic fusimotor activity. The significance of this relatively high proportion of b2c-type spindle primary afferents is discussed in relation to the specialized postural function of the back muscles. PMID:16410280

  12. Additive effects on the energy barrier for synaptic vesicle fusion cause supralinear effects on the vesicle fusion rate.

    PubMed

    Schotten, Sebastiaan; Meijer, Marieke; Walter, Alexander Matthias; Huson, Vincent; Mamer, Lauren; Kalogreades, Lawrence; ter Veer, Mirelle; Ruiter, Marvin; Brose, Nils; Rosenmund, Christian; Sørensen, Jakob Balslev; Verhage, Matthijs; Cornelisse, Lennart Niels

    2015-01-01

    The energy required to fuse synaptic vesicles with the plasma membrane ('activation energy') is considered a major determinant in synaptic efficacy. From reaction rate theory, we predict that a class of modulations exists, which utilize linear modulation of the energy barrier for fusion to achieve supralinear effects on the fusion rate. To test this prediction experimentally, we developed a method to assess the number of releasable vesicles, rate constants for vesicle priming, unpriming, and fusion, and the activation energy for fusion by fitting a vesicle state model to synaptic responses induced by hypertonic solutions. We show that complexinI/II deficiency or phorbol ester stimulation indeed affects responses to hypertonic solution in a supralinear manner. An additive vs multiplicative relationship between activation energy and fusion rate provides a novel explanation for previously observed non-linear effects of genetic/pharmacological perturbations on synaptic transmission and a novel interpretation of the cooperative nature of Ca(2+)-dependent release. PMID:25871846

  13. Selective Cholinergic Depletion in Medial Septum Leads to Impaired Long Term Potentiation and Glutamatergic Synaptic Currents in the Hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    Sims-Robinson, Catrina; Uthayathas, Subramaniam; Josephson, Eleanor M.; Rajakumar, Nagalingam; Dhanasekaran, Muralikrishnan; Suppiramaniam, Vishnu

    2012-01-01

    Cholinergic depletion in the medial septum (MS) is associated with impaired hippocampal-dependent learning and memory. Here we investigated whether long term potentiation (LTP) and synaptic currents, mediated by alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazole-4-propionate (AMPA) and N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors in the CA1 hippocampal region, are affected following cholinergic lesions of the MS. Stereotaxic intra-medioseptal infusions of a selective immunotoxin, 192-saporin, against cholinergic neurons or sterile saline were made in adult rats. Four days after infusions, hippocampal slices were made and LTP, whole cell, and single channel (AMPA or NMDA receptor) currents were recorded. Results demonstrated impairment in the induction and expression of LTP in lesioned rats. Lesioned rats also showed decreases in synaptic currents from CA1 pyramidal cells and synaptosomal single channels of AMPA and NMDA receptors. Our results suggest that MS cholinergic afferents modulate LTP and glutamatergic currents in the CA1 region of the hippocampus, providing a potential synaptic mechanism for the learning and memory deficits observed in the rodent model of selective MS cholinergic lesioning. PMID:22355337

  14. Afference copy as a quantitative neurophysiological model for consciousness.

    PubMed

    Cornelis, Hugo; Coop, Allan D

    2014-06-01

    Consciousness is a topic of considerable human curiosity with a long history of philosophical analysis and debate. We consider there is nothing particularly complicated about consciousness when viewed as a necessary process of the vertebrate nervous system. Here, we propose a physiological "explanatory gap" is created during each present moment by the temporal requirements of neuronal activity. The gap extends from the time exteroceptive and proprioceptive stimuli activate the nervous system until they emerge into consciousness. During this "moment", it is impossible for an organism to have any conscious knowledge of the ongoing evolution of its environment. In our schematic model, a mechanism of "afference copy" is employed to bridge the explanatory gap with consciously experienced percepts. These percepts are fabricated from the conjunction of the cumulative memory of previous relevant experience and the given stimuli. They are structured to provide the best possible prediction of the expected content of subjective conscious experience likely to occur during the period of the gap. The model is based on the proposition that the neural circuitry necessary to support consciousness is a product of sub/preconscious reflexive learning and recall processes. Based on a review of various psychological and neurophysiological findings, we develop a framework which contextualizes the model and briefly discuss further implications. PMID:25012715

  15. Synaptic Function of Rab11Fip5: Selective Requirement for Hippocampal Long-Term Depression

    PubMed Central

    Ahmad, Mohiuddin; Jurado, Sandra; Malenka, Robert C.

    2015-01-01

    Postsynaptic AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs) are among the major determinants of synaptic strength and can be trafficked into and out of synapses. Neuronal activity regulates AMPAR trafficking during synaptic plasticity to induce long-term changes in synaptic strength, including long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). Rab family GTPases regulate most membrane trafficking in eukaryotic cells; particularly, Rab11 and its effectors are implicated in mediating postsynaptic AMPAR insertion during LTP. To explore the synaptic function of Rab11Fip5, a neuronal Rab11 effector and a candidate autism-spectrum disorder gene, we performed shRNA-mediated knock-down and genetic knock-out (KO) studies. Surprisingly, we observed robust shRNA-induced synaptic phenotypes that were rescued by a Rab11Fip5 cDNA but that were nevertheless not observed in conditional KO neurons. Both in cultured neurons and acute slices, KO of Rab11Fip5 had no significant effect on basic parameters of synaptic transmission, indicating that Rab11Fip5 is not required for fundamental synaptic operations, such as neurotransmitter release or postsynaptic AMPAR insertion. KO of Rab11Fip5 did, however, abolish hippocampal LTD as measured both in acute slices or using a chemical LTD protocol in cultured neurons but did not affect hippocampal LTP. The Rab11Fip5 KO mice performed normally in several behavioral tasks, including fear conditioning, but showed enhanced contextual fear extinction. These are the first findings to suggest a requirement for Rab11Fip5, and presumably Rab11, during LTD. PMID:25972173

  16. Opposing Synaptic Regulation of Amyloid-? Metabolism by NMDA Receptors In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Verges, Deborah K.; Restivo, Jessica L.; Goebel, Whitney D.; Holtzman, David M.; Cirrito, John R.

    2012-01-01

    The concentration of amyloid-? (A?) within the brain extracellular space is one determinant of whether the peptide will aggregate into toxic species that are important in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathogenesis. Some types of synaptic activity can regulate A? levels. Here we demonstrate two distinct mechanisms that are simultaneously activated by NMDA receptors and regulate brain interstitial fluid (ISF) A? levels in opposite directions in the living mouse. Depending on the dose of NMDA administered locally to the brain, ISF A? levels either increase or decrease. Low doses of NMDA increase action potentials and synaptic transmission which leads to an elevation in synaptic A? generation. In contrast, high doses of NMDA activate signaling pathways that lead to ERK (extracellular-regulated kinase) activation, which reduces processing of APP into A?. This depression in A? via APP processing occurs despite dramatically elevated synaptic activity. Both of these synaptic mechanisms are simultaneously active, with the balance between them determining whether ISF A? levels will increase or decrease. NMDA receptor antagonists increase ISF A? levels, suggesting that basal activity at these receptors normally suppresses A? levels in vivo. This has implications for understanding normal A? metabolism as well as AD pathogenesis. PMID:21813692

  17. Importance of being Nernst: Synaptic activity and functional relevance in stem cell-derived neurons

    PubMed Central

    Bradford, Aaron B; McNutt, Patrick M

    2015-01-01

    Functional synaptogenesis and network emergence are signature endpoints of neurogenesis. These behaviors provide higher-order confirmation that biochemical and cellular processes necessary for neurotransmitter release, post-synaptic detection and network propagation of neuronal activity have been properly expressed and coordinated among cells. The development of synaptic neurotransmission can therefore be considered a defining property of neurons. Although dissociated primary neuron cultures readily form functioning synapses and network behaviors in vitro, continuously cultured neurogenic cell lines have historically failed to meet these criteria. Therefore, in vitro-derived neuron models that develop synaptic transmission are critically needed for a wide array of studies, including molecular neuroscience, developmental neurogenesis, disease research and neurotoxicology. Over the last decade, neurons derived from various stem cell lines have shown varying ability to develop into functionally mature neurons. In this review, we will discuss the neurogenic potential of various stem cells populations, addressing strengths and weaknesses of each, with particular attention to the emergence of functional behaviors. We will propose methods to functionally characterize new stem cell-derived neuron (SCN) platforms to improve their reliability as physiological relevant models. Finally, we will review how synaptically active SCNs can be applied to accelerate research in a variety of areas. Ultimately, emphasizing the critical importance of synaptic activity and network responses as a marker of neuronal maturation is anticipated to result in in vitro findings that better translate to efficacious clinical treatments. PMID:26240679

  18. Spatiotemporal discrimination in neural networks with short-term synaptic plasticity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shlaer, Benjamin; Miller, Paul

    2015-03-01

    Cells in recurrently connected neural networks exhibit bistability, which allows for stimulus information to persist in a circuit even after stimulus offset, i.e. short-term memory. However, such a system does not have enough hysteresis to encode temporal information about the stimuli. The biophysically described phenomenon of synaptic depression decreases synaptic transmission strengths due to increased presynaptic activity. This short-term reduction in synaptic strengths can destabilize attractor states in excitatory recurrent neural networks, causing the network to move along stimulus dependent dynamical trajectories. Such a network can successfully separate amplitudes and durations of stimuli from the number of successive stimuli. Stimulus number, duration and intensity encoding in randomly connected attractor networks with synaptic depression. Front. Comput. Neurosci. 7:59., and so provides a strong candidate network for the encoding of spatiotemporal information. Here we explicitly demonstrate the capability of a recurrent neural network with short-term synaptic depression to discriminate between the temporal sequences in which spatial stimuli are presented.

  19. Vestibular-mediated synaptic inputs and pathways to sympathetic preganglionic neurons in the neonatal mouse

    PubMed Central

    Kasumacic, Nedim; Glover, Joel C; Perreault, Marie-Claude

    2012-01-01

    To assess when vestibulosympathetic projections become functional postnatally, and to establish a preparation in which vestibulosympathetic circuitry can be characterized more precisely, we used an optical approach to record VIIIth nerve-evoked synaptic inputs to thoracic sympathetic preganglionic neurons (SPNs) in newborn mice. Stimulation of the VIIIth nerve was performed in an isolated brainstem–spinal cord preparation after retrogradely labelling with the fluorescent calcium indicator Calcium Green 1-conjugated dextran amine, the SPNs and the somatic motoneurons (MNs) in the thoracic (T) segments T2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 12. Synaptically mediated calcium responses could be visualized and recorded in individual SPNs and MNs, and analysed with respect to latency, temporal pattern, magnitude and synaptic pharmacology. VIIIth nerve stimulation evoked responses in all SPNs and MNs investigated. The SPN responses had onset latencies from 90 to 200 ms, compared with much shorter latencies in MNs, and were completely abolished by mephenesin, a drug that preferentially reduces polysynaptic over monosynaptic transmission. Bicuculline and picrotoxin, but not strychnine, increased the magnitudes of the SPN responses without changing the onset latencies, suggesting a convergence of concomitant excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs. Lesions strategically placed to test the involvement of direct vestibulospinal pathways versus indirect pathways within the brainstem showed that vestibulosympathetic inputs in the neonate are mediated predominantly, if not exclusively, by the latter. Thus, already at birth, synaptic connections in the vestibulosympathetic reflex are functional and require the involvement of the ventrolateral medulla as in adult mammals. PMID:22946097

  20. Synaptic vesicle recycling: steps and principles

    PubMed Central

    Rizzoli, Silvio O

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic vesicle recycling is one of the best-studied cellular pathways. Many of the proteins involved are known, and their interactions are becoming increasingly clear. However, as for many other pathways, it is still difficult to understand synaptic vesicle recycling as a whole. While it is generally possible to point out how synaptic reactions take place, it is not always easy to understand what triggers or controls them. Also, it is often difficult to understand how the availability of the reaction partners is controlled: how the reaction partners manage to find each other in the right place, at the right time. I present here an overview of synaptic vesicle recycling, discussing the mechanisms that trigger different reactions, and those that ensure the availability of reaction partners. A central argument is that synaptic vesicles bind soluble cofactor proteins, with low affinity, and thus control their availability in the synapse, forming a buffer for cofactor proteins. The availability of cofactor proteins, in turn, regulates the different synaptic reactions. Similar mechanisms, in which one of the reaction partners buffers another, may apply to many other processes, from the biogenesis to the degradation of the synaptic vesicle. PMID:24596248

  1. The v-ATPase V0 Subunit a1 Is Required for a Late Step in Synaptic Vesicle Exocytosis in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Hiesinger, P. Robin; Fayyazuddin, Amir; Mehta, Sunil Q.; Rosenmund, Tanja; Schulze, Karen L.; Zhai, R. Grace; Verstreken, Patrik; Cao, Yu; Zhou, Yi; Kunz, Jeannette; Bellen, Hugo J.

    2012-01-01

    Summary The V0 complex forms the proteolipid pore of an ATPase that acidifies vesicles. In addition, an independent function in membrane fusion has been proposed largely based on yeast vacuolar fusion experiments. We have isolated mutations in the largest V0 component vha100-1 in flies in an unbiased genetic screen for synaptic malfunction. The protein is only required in neurons, colocalizes with markers for synaptic vesicles as well as active zones, and interacts with t-SNAREs. Loss of vha100-1 leads to vesicle accumulation in synaptic terminals, suggesting a deficit in release. The amplitude of spontaneous release events and release with hypertonic stimulation indicate normal levels of neurotransmitter loading, yet mutant embryos display severe defects in evoked synaptic transmission and FM1-43 uptake. Our data suggest that Vha100-1 functions downstream of SNAREs in synaptic vesicle fusion. PMID:15907473

  2. Acute and chronic effects of ethanol on learning-related synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Zorumski, Charles F; Mennerick, Steven; Izumi, Yukitoshi

    2014-02-01

    Alcoholism is associated with acute and long-term cognitive dysfunction including memory impairment, resulting in substantial disability and cost to society. Thus, understanding how ethanol impairs cognition is essential for developing treatment strategies to dampen its adverse impact. Memory processing is thought to involve persistent, use-dependent changes in synaptic transmission, and ethanol alters the activity of multiple signaling molecules involved in synaptic processing, including modulation of the glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) transmitter systems that mediate most fast excitatory and inhibitory transmission in the brain. Effects on glutamate and GABA receptors contribute to ethanol-induced changes in long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD), forms of synaptic plasticity thought to underlie memory acquisition. In this paper, we review the effects of ethanol on learning-related forms of synaptic plasticity with emphasis on changes observed in the hippocampus, a brain region that is critical for encoding contextual and episodic memories. We also include studies in other brain regions as they pertain to altered cognitive and mental function. Comparison of effects in the hippocampus to other brain regions is instructive for understanding the complexities of ethanol's acute and long-term pharmacological consequences. PMID:24447472

  3. Rotational Responses of Vestibular–Nerve Afferents Innervating the Semicircular Canals in the C57BL/6 Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Han, Gyu Cheol; Park, Hong Ju; Minor, Lloyd B.

    2008-01-01

    Extracellular recordings were made from vestibular–nerve afferents innervating the semicircular canals in anesthetized C57BL/6 mice ranging in age from 4–24 weeks. A normalized coefficient of variation was used to divide afferents into regular (CV*??0.1) groups. There were three overall conclusions from this study. First, mouse afferents resemble those of other mammals in properties such as resting discharge rate and dependence of response dynamics on discharge regularity. Second, there are differences in mouse afferents relative to other mammals that are likely related to the smaller size of the semicircular canals. The rotational sensitivity of mouse afferents is approximately threefold lower than that reported for afferents in other mammals. One consequence of the lower sensitivity is that mouse afferents have a larger linear range for encoding head velocity. The long time constant of afferent discharge, which is a measure of low-frequency response dynamics, is shorter in mouse afferents than in other species. Third, juvenile mice (age 4–7 weeks) appear to lack a class of low-sensitivity, highly irregular afferents that are present in adult animals (age 10–24 weeks). By analogy to studies in the chinchilla, these irregular afferents with low sensitivities for lower rotational frequencies correspond to calyx-only afferents. These findings suggest that, although the calyx ending on to type I hair cells is morphologically complete in mice by the age of about 1 month, the physiological response properties in these juvenile animals are not equivalent to those in adults. PMID:18473139

  4. VGLUT2 controls heat and punctuate hyperalgesia associated with nerve injury via TRPV1-Cre primary afferents

    PubMed Central

    Rogoz, Katarzyna; Stjärne, Ludvig; Kullander, Klas; Lagerström, Malin C.

    2015-01-01

    Nerve injury induces a state of prolonged thermal and mechanical hypersensitivity in the innervated area, causing distress in affected individuals. Nerve injury-induced hypersensitivity is partially due to increased activity and thereby sustained release of neurotransmitters from the injured fibers. Glutamate, a prominent neurotransmitter in primary afferents, plays a major role in development of hypersensitivity. Glutamate is packed in vesicles by vesicular glutamate transporters (VGLUTs) to enable controlled release upon depolarization. While a role for peripheral VGLUTs in nerve injury-induced pain is established, their contribution in specific peripheral neuronal populations is unresolved. We investigated the role of VGLUT2, expressed by transient receptor potential vanilloid (TRPV1) fibers, in nerve injury-induced hypersensitivity. Our data shows that removal of Vglut2 from Trpv1-Cre neurons using transgenic mice abolished both heat and punctuate hyperalgesia associated with nerve injury. In contrast, the development of cold hypersensitivity after nerve injury was unaltered. Here, we show that, VGLUT2-mediated glutamatergic transmission from Trpv1-Cre neurons selectively mediates heat and mechanical hypersensitivity associated with nerve injury. Our data clarifies the role of the Trpv1-Cre population and the dependence of VGLUT2-mediated glutamatergic transmission in nerve injury-induced hyperalgesia. PMID:25615623

  5. Molecular mechanisms of synaptic remodeling in alcoholism.

    PubMed

    Kyzar, Evan J; Pandey, Subhash C

    2015-08-01

    Alcohol use and alcohol addiction represent dysfunctional brain circuits resulting from neuroadaptive changes during protracted alcohol exposure and its withdrawal. Alcohol exerts a potent effect on synaptic plasticity and dendritic spine formation in specific brain regions, providing a neuroanatomical substrate for the pathophysiology of alcoholism. Epigenetics has recently emerged as a critical regulator of gene expression and synaptic plasticity-related events in the brain. Alcohol exposure and withdrawal induce changes in crucial epigenetic processes in the emotional brain circuitry (amygdala) that may be relevant to the negative affective state defined as the "dark side" of addiction. Here, we review the literature concerning synaptic plasticity and epigenetics, with a particular focus on molecular events related to dendritic remodeling during alcohol abuse and alcoholism. Targeting epigenetic processes that modulate synaptic plasticity may yield novel treatments for alcoholism. PMID:25623036

  6. Oligodendrocyte-Myelin Glycoprotein and Nogo Negatively Regulate Activity-Dependent Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Raiker, Stephen J.; Lee, Hakjoo; Baldwin, Katherine T.; Duan, Yuntao; Shrager, Peter; Giger, Roman J.

    2010-01-01

    In the adult mammalian CNS, the growth inhibitors oligodendrocyte-myelin glycoprotein (OMgp) and the reticulon RTN4 (Nogo) are broadly expressed in oligodendrocytes and neurons. Nogo and OMgp complex with the neuronal cell surface receptors Nogo receptor-1 (NgR1) and paired immunoglobulin-like receptor-B (PirB) to regulate neuronal morphology. In the healthy CNS, NgR1 regulates dendritic spine shape and attenuates activity-driven synaptic plasticity at Schaffer collateral-CA1 synapses. Here we examine whether Nogo and OMgp influence functional synaptic plasticity, the efficacy by which synaptic transmission occurs. In acute hippocampal slices of adult mice, Nogo-66 and OMgp suppress NMDAR-dependent long-term potentiation (LTP) when locally applied to Schaffer collateral-CA1 synapses. Neither Nogo-66 nor OMgp influences basal synaptic transmission or paired-pulse facilitation, a form of short-term synaptic plasticity. PirB?/? and NgR1?/? single mutants and NgR1?/?;PirB?/? double mutants show normal LTP, indistinguishable from wild-type controls. In juvenile mice, LTD in NgR1?/? but not PirB?/? slices is absent. Mechanistic studies revealed that Nogo-66 and OMgp suppress LTP in an NgR1–dependent manner. OMgp inhibits LTP in part through PirB but independently of p75. This suggests that NgR1 and PirB participate in ligand-dependent inhibition of synaptic plasticity. Loss of NgR1 leads to increased phosphorylation of erk1/2, signaling intermediates known to regulate neuronal growth and synaptic function. In primary hippocampal neurons, BDNF elicited phosphorylation of AKT and p70S6-kinase is attenuated in the presence of myelin inhibitors. Collectively, we provide evidence that mechanisms of neuronal growth inhibition and inhibition of synaptic strength are related. Thus, myelin inhibitors and their receptors may coordinate structural and functional neuronal plasticity in CNS health and disease. PMID:20844138

  7. Restorative respiratory pathways after partial cervical spinal cord injury: role of ipsilateral phrenic afferents.

    PubMed

    Vinit, Stéphane; Stamegna, Jean-Claude; Boulenguez, Pascale; Gauthier, Patrick; Kastner, Anne

    2007-06-01

    After disruption of the descending respiratory pathways induced by unilateral cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) in rats, the inactivated ipsilateral (ipsi) phrenic nerve (PN) discharge may partially recover following some specific experimental procedures [such as contralateral (contra) phrenicotomy (Phx)]. This phrenic reactivation involves normally silent contra pathways decussating at the level of the phrenic nucleus, but the mechanisms of this crossed phrenic activation are still poorly understood. The present study investigates the contribution of sensory phrenic afferents to this process by comparing the acute effects of ipsi and contra Phx. We show that the phrenic discharge (recorded on intact PNs) was almost completely suppressed 0 h and 3 h after a lateral cervical SCI, but was already spontaneously reactivated after 1 week. This ipsi phrenic activity was enhanced immediately after contra Phx and was completely suppressed by an acute contra cervical section, indicating that it is triggered by crossed phrenic pathways located laterally in the contra spinal cord. Ipsi phrenic activity was also abolished immediately after ipsi Phx that interrupts phrenic sensory afferents, an effect prevented by prior acute ablation of the cervical dorsal root ganglia, indicating that crossed phrenic activation depends on excitatory phrenic sensory afferents but also putatively on inhibitory non-phrenic afferents. On the basis of these data, we propose a new model for crossed phrenic activation after partial cervical injury, with an essential role played by ipsi-activating phrenic sensory afferents. PMID:17610574

  8. The role of corneal afferent neurons in regulating tears under normal and dry eye conditions.

    PubMed

    Meng, Ian D; Kurose, Masayuki

    2013-12-01

    The cornea is one of several orofacial structures requiring glandular secretion for proper lubrication. Glandular secretion is regulated through a neural reflex initiated by trigeminal primary afferent neurons innervating the corneal epithelium. Corneal sensory afferents must respond to irritating and potentially damaging stimuli, as well as drying that occurs with evaporation of the tear film, and the physiological properties of corneal afferents are consistent with these requirements. Polymodal neurons are sensitive to noxious mechanical, thermal and chemical stimuli, mechanoreceptive neurons are selectively activated by mechanical stimuli, and cool cells respond to innocuous cooling. The central terminations of corneal primary afferents are located within two regions of the spinal trigeminal nucleus. The more rostral region, located at the transition between the trigeminal subnucleus caudalis and interpolaris, represents a critical relay for the regulation of the lacrimation reflex. From this region, major control of lacrimation is carried through projections to preganglionic parasympathetic neurons located in or around the superior salivatory nucleus. Dry eye syndrome may be caused by a dysfunction in the tear secreting glands themselves or in the neuronal circuit regulating these glands. Furthermore, the dry eye condition itself may modify the properties of corneal afferents and affect their ability to regulate secretion, a possibility just now being explored. PMID:23994439

  9. The role of corneal afferent neurons in regulating tears under normal and dry eye conditions

    PubMed Central

    Meng, Ian D.; Kurose, Masayuki

    2013-01-01

    The cornea is one of several orofacial structures requiring glandular secretion for proper lubrication. Glandular secretion is regulated through a neural reflex initiated by trigeminal primary afferent neurons innervating the corneal epithelium. Corneal sensory afferents must respond to irritating and potentially damaging stimuli, as well as drying that occurs with evaporation of the tear film, and the physiological properties of corneal afferents are consistent with these requirements. Polymodal neurons are sensitive to noxious mechanical, thermal and chemical stimuli, mechanoreceptive neurons are selectively activated by mechanical stimuli, and cool cells respond to innocuous cooling. The central terminations of corneal primary afferents are located within two regions of the spinal trigeminal nucleus. The more rostral region, located at the transition between the trigeminal subnucleus caudalis and interpolaris, represents a critical relay for the regulation of the lacrimation reflex. From this region, major control of lacrimation is carried through projections to preganglionic parasympathetic neurons located in or around the superior salivatory nucleus. Dry eye syndrome may be caused by a dysfunction in the tear secreting glands themselves or in the neuronal circuit regulating these glands. Furthermore, the dry eye condition itself may modify the properties of corneal afferents and affect their ability to regulate secretion, a possibility just now being explored. PMID:23994439

  10. Afferent fibers involved in the bradykinin-induced cardiovascular reflexes from the ovary in rats.

    PubMed

    Uchida, Sae; Kagitani, Fusako; Hotta, Harumi

    2015-12-01

    Bleeding or rupture of the ovary often accompanies ovarian cysts and causes severe pain and autonomic responses such as hypotension. It would be expected that ovarian afferents contribute to cardiovascular responses induced by ovarian failure. The present study examined cardiovascular responses to noxious chemical stimulation of the ovary by bradykinin, an algesic substance released by tissue damage, and explored the role of ovarian afferents in the ovarian-cardiovascular responses in anesthetized rats. Non-pregnant adult rats were anesthetized with pentobarbital and artificially ventilated. The carotid artery was cannulated to monitor blood pressure and heart rate. Noxious chemical stimulation was achieved by applying a small piece of cotton soaked with bradykinin to the surface of the ovary for 30s. Application of bradykinin (10(-4)M) to the ovary decreased heart rate and blood pressure. These cardiovascular responses were not significantly influenced by severance of the vagal nerves or the superior ovarian nerve, but were abolished by severance of the ovarian nerve plexus (ONP). Application of bradykinin (10(-4)M) to the ovary evoked afferent activity of the ONP both in vivo and in vitro preparations. These results indicate that the decreases in heart rate and blood pressure following chemical noxious stimulation of the ovary with bradykinin are reflex responses, whose afferent nerve pathway is mainly through afferent fibers in the ONP. PMID:26234483

  11. Regulation of synaptic structure and function at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction

    E-print Network

    Blunk, Aline D. (Aline Dorret)

    2013-01-01

    Neuronal communication requires a spatially organized synaptic apparatus to coordinate neurotransmitter release from synaptic vesicles and activation of postsynaptic receptors. Structural remodeling of synaptic connections ...

  12. Roles of mGluR5 in synaptic function and plasticity of the mouse thalamocortical pathway

    PubMed Central

    She, Wei-Chi; Quairiaux, Charles; Albright, Michael J.; Wang, Yu-Chi; Sanchez, Denisse E.; Chang, Poh-Shing; Welker, Egbert; Lu, Hui-Chen

    2009-01-01

    The group I metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5) has been implicated in the development of cortical sensory maps. However its precise roles in the synaptic function and plasticity of thalamocortical connections remain unknown. Here we first show that in mGluR5 knockout mice bred onto a C57BL6 background cyto-architectonic differentiation into barrels is missing, but the representations for large whiskers are identifiable as clusters of thalamocortical afferents. The altered dendritic morphology of cortical layer IV spiny stellate neurons in mGluR5 knockout mice implicates a role for mGluR5 in the dendritic morphogenesis of excitatory neurons. Next, in vivo single unit recordings of whisker evoked activity in mGluR5 knockout adults demonstrated a preserved topographical organization of the whisker representation, but a significantly diminished temporal discrimination of center to surround whiskers in the responses of individual neurons. To evaluate synaptic function at thalamocortical synapses in mGluR5 knockout mice, whole-cell voltage clamp recording was conducted in acute thalamocortical brain slices prepared from postnatal day 4–11 mice. At mGluR5 knockout thalamocortical synapses, NMDA currents decayed faster and synaptic strength was more easily reduced, but more difficult to strengthen by Hebbian-type pairing protocols, despite a normal developmental increase in AMPAR-mediated currents and presynaptic function. We have therefore demonstrated that mGluR5 is required for synaptic function/plasticity at thalamocortical synapses as barrels are forming and we propose that these functional alterations at the thalamocortical synapse are the basis of the abnormal anatomical and functional development of the somatosensory cortex in the mGluR5 knockout mouse. PMID:19519626

  13. Absence of Synaptic Regulation by Phosducin in Retinal Slices

    PubMed Central

    Long, James H.; Arshavsky, Vadim Y.; Burns, Marie E.

    2013-01-01

    Phosducin is an abundant photoreceptor protein that binds G-protein ?? subunits and plays a role in modulating synaptic transmission at photoreceptor synapses under both dark-adapted and light-adapted conditions in vivo. To examine the role of phosducin at the rod-to-rod bipolar cell (RBC) synapse, we used whole-cell voltage clamp recordings to measure the light-evoked currents from both wild-type (WT) and phosducin knockout (Pd?/?) RBCs, in dark- and light-adapted retinal slices. Pd?/?RBCs showed smaller dim flash responses and steeper intensity-response relationships than WT RBCs, consistent with the smaller rod responses being selectively filtered out by the non-linear threshold at the rod-to-rod bipolar synapse. In addition, Pd?/? RBCs showed a marked delay in the onset of the light-evoked currents, similar to that of a WT response to an effectively dimmer flash. Comparison of the changes in flash sensitivity in the presence of steady adapting light revealed that Pd?/? RBCs desensitized less than WT RBCs to the same intensity. These results are quantitatively consistent with the smaller single photon responses of Pd?/? rods, owing to the known reduction in rod G-protein expression levels in this line. The absence of an additional synaptic phenotype in these experiments suggests that the function of phosducin at the photoreceptor synapse is abolished by the conditions of retinal slice recordings. PMID:24376776

  14. Thrombin regulation of synaptic plasticity: implications for physiology and pathology.

    PubMed

    Maggio, Nicola; Itsekson, Zeev; Dominissini, Dan; Blatt, Ilan; Amariglio, Ninette; Rechavi, Gideon; Tanne, David; Chapman, Joab

    2013-09-01

    Thrombin, a serine protease involved in the coagulation cascade has been recently shown to affect neuronal function following blood-brain barrier breakdown. Several lines of evidence have shown that thrombin may exist in the brain parenchyma under normal physiological conditions, yet its role in normal brain functions and synaptic transmission has not been established. In an attempt to shed light on the physiological functions of thrombin and Protease Activated Receptor 1 (PAR1) in the brain, we studied the effects of thrombin and a PAR1 agonist on long term potentiation (LTP) in mice hippocampal slices. Surprisingly, different concentrations of thrombin affect LTP through different molecular routes converging on PAR1. High thrombin concentrations induced an NMDA dependent, slow onset LTP, whereas low concentrations of thrombin promoted a VGCCs, mGluR-5 dependent LTP through activated Protein C (aPC). Remarkably, aPC facilitated LTP by activating PAR1 through an Endothelial Protein C Receptor (EPCR)-mediated mechanism which involves intracellular calcium stores. These findings reveal a novel mechanism by which PAR1 may regulate the threshold for synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus and provide additional insights into the role of this receptor in normal and pathological conditions. PMID:23454608

  15. SUMO1 Affects Synaptic Function, Spine Density and Memory

    PubMed Central

    Matsuzaki, Shinsuke; Lee, Linda; Knock, Erin; Srikumar, Tharan; Sakurai, Mikako; Hazrati, Lili-Naz; Katayama, Taiichi; Staniszewski, Agnieszka; Raught, Brian; Arancio, Ottavio; Fraser, Paul E.

    2015-01-01

    Small ubiquitin-like modifier-1 (SUMO1) plays a number of roles in cellular events and recent evidence has given momentum for its contributions to neuronal development and function. Here, we have generated a SUMO1 transgenic mouse model with exclusive overexpression in neurons in an effort to identify in vivo conjugation targets and the functional consequences of their SUMOylation. A high-expressing line was examined which displayed elevated levels of mono-SUMO1 and increased high molecular weight conjugates in all brain regions. Immunoprecipitation of SUMOylated proteins from total brain extract and proteomic analysis revealed ~95 candidate proteins from a variety of functional classes, including a number of synaptic and cytoskeletal proteins. SUMO1 modification of synaptotagmin-1 was found to be elevated as compared to non-transgenic mice. This observation was associated with an age-dependent reduction in basal synaptic transmission and impaired presynaptic function as shown by altered paired pulse facilitation, as well as a decrease in spine density. The changes in neuronal function and morphology were also associated with a specific impairment in learning and memory while other behavioral features remained unchanged. These findings point to a significant contribution of SUMO1 modification on neuronal function which may have implications for mechanisms involved in mental retardation and neurodegeneration. PMID:26022678

  16. A small pool of vesicles maintains synaptic activity in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Denker, Annette; Bethani, Ioanna; Kröhnert, Katharina; Körber, Christoph; Horstmann, Heinz; Wilhelm, Benjamin G.; Barysch, Sina V.; Kuner, Thomas; Neher, Erwin; Rizzoli, Silvio O.

    2011-01-01

    Chemical synapses contain substantial numbers of neurotransmitter-filled synaptic vesicles, ranging from approximately 100 to many thousands. The vesicles fuse with the plasma membrane to release neurotransmitter and are subsequently reformed and recycled. Stimulation of synapses in vitro generally causes the majority of the synaptic vesicles to release neurotransmitter, leading to the assumption that synapses contain numerous vesicles to sustain transmission during high activity. We tested this assumption by an approach we termed cellular ethology, monitoring vesicle function in behaving animals (10 animal models, nematodes to mammals). Using FM dye photooxidation, pHluorin imaging, and HRP uptake we found that only approximately 1–5% of the vesicles recycled over several hours, in both CNS synapses and neuromuscular junctions. These vesicles recycle repeatedly, intermixing slowly (over hours) with the reserve vesicles. The latter can eventually release when recycling is inhibited in vivo but do not seem to participate under normal activity. Vesicle recycling increased only to ?5% in animals subjected to an extreme stress situation (frog predation on locusts). Synapsin, a molecule binding both vesicles and the cytoskeleton, may be a marker for the reserve vesicles: the proportion of vesicles recycling in vivo increased to 30% in synapsin-null Drosophila. We conclude that synapses do not require numerous reserve vesicles to sustain neurotransmitter release and thus may use them for other purposes, examined in the accompanying paper. PMID:21903928

  17. Saccular afferents to second-order cochlear neurons. An horseradish peroxidase and immunocytochemical study.

    PubMed

    Burian, M; Cartellieri, M; Wutschitz, C; Gstoettner, W

    1991-01-01

    Previous studies have described a primary afferent vestibular projection to second-order cochlear neurons originating from the saccular maculae. As could be shown in the guinea pig by means of anterograde transport of horseradish peroxidase and immuno-cytochemistry, these saccular afferents terminated at cells immunoreactive to glutamate and aspartate but not to gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). These were intermingled among the fibers of the acoustic striae and situated between the dorsal cochlear nucleus and the octopus cell area. Within the acoustic striae, these saccular afferents appear to have a close relationship to GABA-immunoreactive structures, such as boutons en passant and terminal boutons. This striking relationship, along with cytoarchitectural criteria and the saccular input to these second-order cochlear neurons, gave reason to discern them as a separate cell group. PMID:1685086

  18. Functional localization of neurotransmitter receptors and synaptic inputs to mature neurons of the medial superior olive.

    PubMed

    Couchman, Kiri; Grothe, Benedikt; Felmy, Felix

    2012-02-01

    Neurons of the medial superior olive (MSO) code for the azimuthal location of low-frequency sound sources via a binaural coincidence detection system operating on microsecond time scales. These neurons are morphologically simple and stereotyped, and anatomical studies have indicated a functional segregation of excitatory and inhibitory inputs between cellular compartments. It is thought that this morphological arrangement holds important implications for the computational task of these cells. To date, however, there has been no functional investigation into synaptic input sites or functional receptor distributions on mature neurons of the MSO. Here, functional neurotransmitter receptor maps for amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionate (AMPA), N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA), glycine (Gly), and ionotropic ?-aminobutyric acid (GABA(A)) receptors (Rs) were compared and complemented by their corresponding synaptic input map. We find in MSO neurons from postnatal day 20-35 gerbils that AMPARs and their excitatory inputs target the soma and dendrites. Functional GlyRs and their inhibitory inputs are predominantly refined to the somata, although a pool of functional GlyRs is present extrasynaptically on MSO dendrites. GABA(A)R responses are present throughout the cell but lack direct synaptic contact indicating an involvement in volume transmission. NMDARs are present both synaptically and extrasynaptically with an overall distribution similar to GlyRs. Interestingly, even at physiological temperatures these functional NMDARs can be potentiated by synaptically released Gly. The functional receptor and synaptic input maps produced here led to the identification of a cross talk between transmitter systems and raises the possibility that extrasynaptic receptors could be modulating leak conductances as a homeostatic mechanism. PMID:22131383

  19. Fragile X mental retardation protein regulates trans-synaptic signaling in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Friedman, Samuel H.; Dani, Neil; Rushton, Emma; Broadie, Kendal

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most common inherited determinant of intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorders, is caused by loss of the fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene product (FMRP), an mRNA-binding translational repressor. A number of conserved FMRP targets have been identified in the well-characterized Drosophila FXS disease model, but FMRP is highly pleiotropic in function and the full spectrum of FMRP targets has yet to be revealed. In this study, screens for upregulated neural proteins in Drosophila fmr1 (dfmr1) null mutants reveal strong elevation of two synaptic heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs): GPI-anchored glypican Dally-like protein (Dlp) and transmembrane Syndecan (Sdc). Our recent work has shown that Dlp and Sdc act as co-receptors regulating extracellular ligands upstream of intracellular signal transduction in multiple trans-synaptic pathways that drive synaptogenesis. Consistently, dfmr1 null synapses exhibit altered WNT signaling, with changes in both Wingless (Wg) ligand abundance and downstream Frizzled-2 (Fz2) receptor C-terminal nuclear import. Similarly, a parallel anterograde signaling ligand, Jelly belly (Jeb), and downstream ERK phosphorylation (dpERK) are depressed at dfmr1 null synapses. In contrast, the retrograde BMP ligand Glass bottom boat (Gbb) and downstream signaling via phosphorylation of the transcription factor MAD (pMAD) seem not to be affected. To determine whether HSPG upregulation is causative for synaptogenic defects, HSPGs were genetically reduced to control levels in the dfmr1 null background. HSPG correction restored both (1) Wg and Jeb trans-synaptic signaling, and (2) synaptic architecture and transmission strength back to wild-type levels. Taken together, these data suggest that FMRP negatively regulates HSPG co-receptors controlling trans-synaptic signaling during synaptogenesis, and that loss of this regulation causes synaptic structure and function defects characterizing the FXS disease state. PMID:24046358

  20. Synaptic excitation is regulated by the postsynaptic dSK channel at the Drosophila larval NMJ

    PubMed Central

    Gertner, Daniel M.; Desai, Sunil

    2014-01-01

    In the mammalian central nervous system, the postsynaptic small-conductance Ca2+-dependent K+ (SK) channel has been shown to reduce postsynaptic depolarization and limit Ca2+ influx through N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors. To examine further the role of the postsynaptic SK channel in synaptic transmission, we studied its action at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ). Repetitive synaptic stimulation produced an increase in postsynaptic membrane conductance leading to depression of excitatory postsynaptic potential amplitude and hyperpolarization of the resting membrane potential (RMP). This reduction in synaptic excitation was due to the postsynaptic Drosophila SK (dSK) channel; synaptic depression, increased membrane conductance and RMP hyperpolarization were reduced in dSK mutants or after expressing a Ca2+ buffer in the muscle. Ca2+ entering at the postsynaptic membrane was sufficient to activate dSK channels based upon studies in which the muscle membrane was voltage clamped to prevent opening voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels. Increasing external Ca2+ produced an increase in resting membrane conductance and RMP that was not seen in dSK mutants or after adding the glutamate-receptor blocker philanthotoxin. Thus it appeared that dSK channels were also activated by spontaneous transmitter release and played a role in setting membrane conductance and RMP. In mammals, dephosphorylation by protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A) increased the Ca2+ sensitivity of the SK channel; PP2A appeared to increase the sensitivity of the dSK channel since PP2A inhibitors reduced activation of the dSK channel by evoked synaptic activity or increased external Ca2+. It is proposed that spontaneous and evoked transmitter release activate the postsynaptic dSK channel to limit synaptic excitation and stabilize synapses. PMID:24671529

  1. Synaptic Effects of Munc18-1 Alternative Splicing in Excitatory Hippocampal Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Toonen, Ruud F.; Verhage, Matthijs

    2015-01-01

    The munc18-1 gene encodes two splice-variants that vary at the C-terminus of the protein and are expressed at different levels in different regions of the adult mammalian brain. Here, we investigated the expression pattern of these splice variants within the brainstem and tested whether they are functionally different. Munc18-1a is expressed in specific nuclei of the brainstem including the LRN, VII and SOC, while Munc18-1b expression is relatively low/absent in these regions. Furthermore, Munc18-1a is the major splice variant in the Calyx of Held. Synaptic transmission was analyzed in autaptic hippocampal munc18-1 KO neurons re-expressing either Munc18-1a or Munc18-1b. The two splice variants supported synaptic transmission to a similar extent, but Munc18-1b was slightly more potent in sustaining synchronous release during high frequency stimulation. Our data suggest that alternative splicing of Munc18-1 support synaptic transmission to a similar extent, but could modulate presynaptic short-term plasticity. PMID:26407320

  2. Pharmacological characterization of 5-hydroxytryptamine-induced excitation of afferent cervical vagus nerve in anaesthetized rats.

    PubMed Central

    Yoshioka, M.; Ikeda, T.; Abe, M.; Togashi, H.; Minami, M.; Saito, H.

    1992-01-01

    1. An excitatory response to 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) was measured from the afferent vagus nerve of anaesthetized rats. Measurements were determined by an extracellular recording from the whole nerve. 2. Intravenous bolus injection of 5-HT (1.56-100 micrograms kg-1) evoked a dose-dependent excitation of afferent vagus nerve activity. This response was blocked not only by a selective 5-HT3 receptor antagonist, GR38032F (10 and 100 micrograms kg-1), but also by a 5-HT2 receptor antagonist, ketanserin (10 and 100 micrograms kg-1). 3. Both a 5-HT3 receptor agonist, 2-methyl-5-HT (3.12-100 micrograms kg-1), and a 5-HT2 receptor agonist, alpha-methyl-5-HT (3.12-50 micrograms kg-1), produced a dose-dependent excitation of afferent vagus nerve activity. These excitatory effects were antagonized by GR38032F (10 micrograms kg-1) and ketanserin (10 micrograms kg-1), respectively. 4. A 5-HT1 like receptor agonist, 5-carboxamidotryptamine (50 micrograms kg-1), and a putative 5-HT4 receptor agonist, 5-methoxytryptamine (100 micrograms kg-1), failed to produce excitatory effects on the afferent vagus nerve. 5. These results suggest that the 5-HT-induced excitatory response of the afferent vagus nerve might be mediated not only via 5-HT3 receptors but also via 5-HT2 receptors in anaesthetized rats. It is unlikely, however, that either 5-HT1-like or putative 5-HT4 receptors are involved in the excitatory response of the afferent vagus nerve to 5-HT. PMID:1387026

  3. Inhibitory and Multisynaptic Spines, and Hemispherical Synaptic Specialization in the Posterodorsal Medial Amygdala of Male and Female Rats

    PubMed Central

    Brusco, Janaina; Merlo, Suélen; Ikeda, Érika T.; Petralia, Ronald S.; Kachar, Bechara; Rasia-Filho, Alberto A.; Moreira, Jorge E.

    2014-01-01

    The density of dendritic spines is sexually dimorphic and variable throughout the female estrous cycle in the rat posterodorsal medial amygdala (MePD), a relevant area for the modulation of reproductive behavior in rats. The local synaptic activity differs between hemispheres in prepubertal animals. Here, we used serial section transmission electron microscopy to produce three-dimensional reconstructions of dendritic shafts and spines to characterize synaptic contacts on MePD neurons of both hemispheres in adult males and in females along the estrous cycle. Pleomorphic spines and non-synaptic filopodia occur in the MePD. On average, 8.6% of dendritic spines received inputs from symmetric GABA-immunoreactive terminals, whereas 3.6% received two synaptic contacts on the spine head, neck or base. Presynaptic terminals in females right MePD had a higher density of synaptic vesicles and docked vesicles than the left MePD, suggesting a higher rate of synaptic vesicle release in the right MePD of female rats. In contrast, males did not show laterality in any of those parameters. The proportion of putative inhibitory synapses on dendritic shafts in the right MePD of females in proestrus was higher than in the left MePD, and higher than in the right MePD in males, or in females in diestrus or estrus. This work shows synaptic laterality depending on sex and the estrous cycle phases in mature MePD neurons. Most likely, sexual hormones effects are lateralized in this brain region, leading to higher synaptic activity in the right than in the left hemisphere of females, mediating timely neuroendocrine and social/reproductive behavior. PMID:24318545

  4. Spatial orientation of semicircular canals and afferent sensitivity vectors in pigeons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dickman, J. D.

    1996-01-01

    Rotational head motion in vertebrates is detected by the semicircular canal system, whose innervating primary afferent fibers carry information about movement in specific head planes. The semicircular canals have been qualitatively examined over a number of years, and the canal planes have been quantitatively characterized in several animal species. The present study first determined the geometric relationship between individual semicircular canals and between the canals and the stereotactic head planes in pigeons. Stereotactic measurements of multiple points along the circumference of the bony canals were taken, and the measured points fitted with a three-dimensional planar surface. Direction normals to the plane's surface were calculated and used to define angles between semicircular canal pairs. Because of the unusual shape of the anterior semicircular canals in pigeons, two planes, a major and a minor, were fitted to the canal's course. Calculated angle values for all canals indicated that the horizontal and posterior semicircular canals are nearly orthogonal, but the anterior canals have substantial deviations from orthogonality with other canal planes. Next, the responses of the afferent fibers that innervate each of the semicircular canals to 0.5 Hz sinusoidal rotation about an earth-vertical axis were obtained. The head orientation relative to the rotation axis was systematically varied so that directions of maximum sensitivity for each canal afferent could be determined. These sensitivity vectors were then compared with the canal plane direction normals. The afferents that innervated specific semicircular canals formed homogeneous clusters of sensitivity vectors in different head planes. The horizontal and posterior afferents had average sensitivity vectors that were largely co-incident with the innervated canal plane direction normals. Anterior canal afferents, however, appeared to synthesize contributions from the major and minor plane components of the bony canal structure to produce a resultant sensitivity vector that was positioned between the canal planes. Calculated angles between the average canal afferent sensitivity vectors revealed that direction orthogonality is preserved at the afferent signal level, even though deviations from canal plane orthogonality exist.

  5. Many recordings have been obtained from muscle afferents in awake humans, monkeys, cats and rabbits, but nearly all

    E-print Network

    Gorassini, Monica

    Many recordings have been obtained from muscle afferents in awake humans, monkeys, cats and rabbits-up chart' of ensemble afferent firing profiles during locomotion in muscles of the cat hindlimb (Prochazka locomotion in cats Arthur Prochazka and Monica Gorassini Division of Neuroscience, University of Alberta

  6. Probing the interior of synaptic vesicles with internalized nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gadd, Jennifer C.; Budzinski, Kristi L.; Chan, Yang-Hsiang; Ye, Fangmao; Chiu, Daniel T.

    2012-03-01

    Synaptic vesicles are subcellular organelles that are found in the synaptic bouton and are responsible for the propagation of signals between neurons. Synaptic vesicles undergo endo- and exocytosis with the neuronal membrane to load and release neurotransmitters. Here we discuss how we utilize this property to load nanoparticles as a means of probing the interior of synaptic vesicles. To probe the intravesicular region of synaptic vesicles, we have developed a highly sensitive pH-sensing polymer dot. We feel the robust nature of the pH-sensing polymer dot will provide insight into the dynamics of proton loading into synaptic vesicles.

  7. Degenerating Synaptic Boutons in Prion Disease

    PubMed Central

    Šišková, Zuzana; Page, Anton; O’Connor, Vincent; Perry, Victor Hugh

    2009-01-01

    A growing body of evidence suggests that the loss of synapses is an early and major component of a number of neurodegenerative diseases. Murine prion disease offers a tractable preparation in which to study synaptic loss in a chronic neurodegenerative disease and to explore the underlying mechanisms. We have previously shown that synaptic loss in the hippocampus underpins the first behavioral changes and that there is a selective loss of presynaptic elements. The microglia have an activated morphology at this stage but they have an anti-inflammatory phenotype. We reasoned that the microglia might be involved in synaptic stripping, removing synapses undergoing a degenerative process, and that this gives rise to the anti-inflammatory phenotype. Analysis of synaptic density revealed a progressive loss from 12 weeks post disease initiation. The loss of synapses was not associated with microglia processes; instead, we found that the postsynaptic density of the dendritic spine was progressively wrapped around the degenerating presynaptic element with loss of subcellular components. Three-dimensional reconstructions of these structures from Dual Beam electron microscopy support the conclusion that the synaptic loss in prion disease is a neuron autonomous event facilitated without direct involvement of glial cells. Previous studies described synapse engulfment by developing and injured neurons, and we suggest that this mechanism may contribute to developmental and pathological changes in synapse numbers. PMID:19779137

  8. Bilinearity in Spatiotemporal Integration of Synaptic Inputs

    PubMed Central

    Li, Songting; Liu, Nan; Zhang, Xiao-hui; Zhou, Douglas; Cai, David

    2014-01-01

    Neurons process information via integration of synaptic inputs from dendrites. Many experimental results demonstrate dendritic integration could be highly nonlinear, yet few theoretical analyses have been performed to obtain a precise quantitative characterization analytically. Based on asymptotic analysis of a two-compartment passive cable model, given a pair of time-dependent synaptic conductance inputs, we derive a bilinear spatiotemporal dendritic integration rule. The summed somatic potential can be well approximated by the linear summation of the two postsynaptic potentials elicited separately, plus a third additional bilinear term proportional to their product with a proportionality coefficient . The rule is valid for a pair of synaptic inputs of all types, including excitation-inhibition, excitation-excitation, and inhibition-inhibition. In addition, the rule is valid during the whole dendritic integration process for a pair of synaptic inputs with arbitrary input time differences and input locations. The coefficient is demonstrated to be nearly independent of the input strengths but is dependent on input times and input locations. This rule is then verified through simulation of a realistic pyramidal neuron model and in electrophysiological experiments of rat hippocampal CA1 neurons. The rule is further generalized to describe the spatiotemporal dendritic integration of multiple excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs. The integration of multiple inputs can be decomposed into the sum of all possible pairwise integration, where each paired integration obeys the bilinear rule. This decomposition leads to a graph representation of dendritic integration, which can be viewed as functionally sparse. PMID:25521832

  9. An analysis of a thermal afferent pathway in the rat

    PubMed Central

    Hellon, R. F.; Taylor, David C. M.

    1982-01-01

    1. Single unit activity has been recorded in the thalamic, hypothalamic and raphe magnus nuclei of rats anaesthetized with Urethane. 2. Neurones were sought which responded to changes in scrotal skin temperature applied with a water-perfused brass thermode. All sixty-nine neurones in the thalamus and hypothalamus responded with abrupt changes in activity as the scrotum was warmed (`switching response'). The majority responded with an increase in activity from minimal to maximal firing rate as the scrotum was warmed over a range of less than 0·5 °C; in about 20% of the neurones the converse was observed. 3. To determine whether the switching response of the thalamic and hypothalamic neurones depended upon a cortico-thalamic feed-back loop, the cortical surface was cooled to 18-20 °C to reversibly abolish cortical post-synaptic activity. 4. Cortical cooling abolished the positive switching response of nearly all (15/19) ventrobasal thalamic neurones to scrotal warming. All eight ventrobasal thalamic neurones with negative switching responses, and all twenty-two scrotal temperature-responsive neurones in other thalamic and hypothalamic nuclei were unaffected. 5. Twenty recordings were also made from scrotal temperature-responsive neurones in the nucleus raphe magnus. All possessed switching responses similar to those observed in the thalamus and hypothalamus. 6. None of the scrotal temperature-responsive neurones in the nucleus raphe magnus was affected by cortical cooling. Six neurones were observed in decerebrate rats with properties apparently identical to those in intact rats. 7. We conclude that the switching response of thalamic and hypothalamic scrotal temperature-responsive neurones is probably generated in the nucleus raphe magnus and passed in parallel to the thalamus and hypothalamus. In addition, thalamic neurones depend on an intact link with the cerebral cortex for the generation of their switching responses. PMID:7108796

  10. Synaptic potentiation facilitates memory-like attractor dynamics in cultured in vitro hippocampal networks.

    PubMed

    Niedringhaus, Mark; Chen, Xin; Conant, Katherine; Dzakpasu, Rhonda

    2013-01-01

    Collective rhythmic dynamics from neurons is vital for cognitive functions such as memory formation but how neurons self-organize to produce such activity is not well understood. Attractor-based computational models have been successfully implemented as a theoretical framework for memory storage in networks of neurons. Additionally, activity-dependent modification of synaptic transmission is thought to be the physiological basis of learning and memory. The goal of this study is to demonstrate that using a pharmacological treatment that has been shown to increase synaptic strength within in vitro networks of hippocampal neurons follows the dynamical postulates theorized by attractor models. We use a grid of extracellular electrodes to study changes in network activity after this perturbation and show that there is a persistent increase in overall spiking and bursting activity after treatment. This increase in activity appears to recruit more "errant" spikes into bursts. Phase plots indicate a conserved activity pattern suggesting that a synaptic potentiation perturbation to the attractor leaves it unchanged. Lastly, we construct a computational model to demonstrate that these synaptic perturbations can account for the dynamical changes seen within the network. PMID:23526935

  11. Protein tyrosine phosphatase PTPRT as a regulator of synaptic formation and neuronal development

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jae-Ran

    2015-01-01

    PTPRT/RPTP? is the most recently isolated member of the type IIB receptor-type protein tyrosine phosphatase family and its expression is restricted to the nervous system. PTPRT plays a critical role in regulation of synaptic formation and neuronal development. When PTPRT was overexpressed in hippocampal neurons, synaptic formation and dendritic arborization were induced. On the other hand, knockdown of PTPRT decreased neuronal transmission and attenuated neuronal development. PTPRT strengthened neuronal synapses by forming homophilic trans dimers with each other and heterophilic cis complexes with neuronal adhesion molecules. Fyn tyrosine kinase regulated PTPRT activity through phosphorylation of tyrosine 912 within the membrane-proximal catalytic domain of PTPRT. Phosphorylation induced homophilic cis dimerization of PTPRT and resulted in the inhibition of phosphatase activity. BCR-Rac1 GAP and Syntaxin-binding protein were found as new endogenous substrates of PTPRT in rat brain. PTPRT induced polymerization of actin cytoskeleton that determined the morphologies of dendrites and spines by inhibiting BCR-Rac1 GAP activity. Additionally, PTPRT appeared to regulate neurotransmitter release through reinforcement of interactions between Syntaxin-binding protein and Syntaxin, a SNARE protein. In conclusion, PTPRT regulates synaptic function and neuronal development through interactions with neuronal adhesion molecules and the dephosphorylation of synaptic molecules. [BMB Reports 2015; 48(5): 249-255] PMID:25748173

  12. Dopamine and norepinephrine receptors participate in methylphenidate enhancement of in vivo hippocampal synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Jenson, Daniel; Yang, Kechun; Acevedo-Rodriguez, Alexandra; Levine, Amber; Broussard, John I; Tang, Jianrong; Dani, John A

    2015-03-01

    Attention-deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) is the most commonly studied and diagnosed psychiatric disorder in children. Methylphenidate (MPH, e.g., Ritalin) has been used to treat ADHD for over 50 years. It is the most commonly prescribed treatment for ADHD, and in the past decade it was the drug most commonly prescribed to teenagers. In addition, MPH has become one of the most widely abused drugs on college campuses. In this study, we examined the effects of MPH on hippocampal synaptic plasticity, which serves as a measurable quantification of memory mechanisms. Field potentials were recorded with permanently implanted electrodes in freely-moving mice to quantify MPH modulation of perforant path synaptic transmission onto granule cells of the dentate gyrus. Our hypothesis was that MPH affects hippocampal synaptic plasticity underlying learning because MPH boosts catecholamine signaling by blocking the dopamine and norepinephrine transporters (DAT and NET respectively). In vitro hippocampal slice experiments indicated MPH enhances perforant path plasticity, and this MPH enhancement arose from action via D1-type dopamine receptors and ?-type adrenergic receptors. Similarly, MPH boosted in vivo initiation of long-term potentiation (LTP). While there was an effect via both dopamine and adrenergic receptors in vivo, LTP induction was more dependent on the MPH-induced action via D1-type dopamine receptors. Under biologically reasonable experimental conditions, MPH enhances hippocampal synaptic plasticity via catecholamine receptors. PMID:25445492

  13. Gene expression parallels synaptic excitability and plasticity changes in Alzheimer’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Saura, Carlos A.; Parra-Damas, Arnaldo; Enriquez-Barreto, Lilian

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by abnormal accumulation of ?-amyloid and tau and synapse dysfunction in memory-related neural circuits. Pathological and functional changes in the medial temporal lobe, a region essential for explicit memory encoding, contribute to cognitive decline in AD. Surprisingly, functional imaging studies show increased activity of the hippocampus and associated cortical regions during memory tasks in presymptomatic and early AD stages, whereas brain activity declines as the disease progresses. These findings suggest an emerging scenario where early pathogenic events might increase neuronal excitability leading to enhanced brain activity before clinical manifestations of the disease, a stage that is followed by decreased brain activity as neurodegeneration progresses. The mechanisms linking pathology with synaptic excitability and plasticity changes leading to memory loss in AD remain largely unclear. Recent studies suggest that increased brain activity parallels enhanced expression of genes involved in synaptic transmission and plasticity in preclinical stages, whereas expression of synaptic and activity-dependent genes are reduced by the onset of pathological and cognitive symptoms. Here, we review recent evidences indicating a relationship between transcriptional deregulation of synaptic genes and neuronal activity and memory loss in AD and mouse models. These findings provide the basis for potential clinical applications of memory-related transcriptional programs and their regulatory mechanisms as novel biomarkers and therapeutic targets to restore brain function in AD and other cognitive disorders. PMID:26379494

  14. Storage and uptake of d-serine into astrocytic synaptic-like vesicles specify gliotransmission

    PubMed Central

    Martineau, Magalie; Shi, Ting; Puyal, Julien; Knolhoff, Ann M.; Dulong, Jérôme; Gasnier, Bruno; Klingauf, Jürgen; Sweedler, Jonathan V.; Jahn, Reinhard; Mothet, Jean-Pierre

    2013-01-01

    Glial cells are increasingly recognized as active players that profoundly influence neuronal synaptic transmission by specialized signalling pathways. In particular, astrocytes have recently been shown to release small molecules such as the amino acids l-glutamate and d-serine as “gliotransmitters”, which directly control the efficacy of adjacent synapses. However, it is still controversial whether gliotransmitters are released from a cytosolic pool or by Ca2+-dependent exocytosis from secretory vesicles, i.e., by a mechanism similar to the release of synaptic vesicles in synapses. Here we report that rat cortical astrocytes contain storage vesicles that display morphological and biochemical features similar to neuronal synaptic vesicles. These vesicles share some, but not all, membrane proteins with synaptic vesicles including the SNARE synaptobrevin 2 and contain both l-glutamate and d-serine. Furthermore, they show uptake of l-glutamate and d-serine that is driven by a proton electrochemical gradient. d-Serine uptake is associated with vesicle acidification and is dependent on chloride. While l-serine is not transported, serine racemase, the synthesizing enzyme for d-serine, is anchored to the membrane of the vesicles allowing local generation of d-serine. Finally, we reveal a previously unexpected mutual vesicular synergy between d-serine and l-glutamate filling in glia vesicles. We conclude that astrocytes contain vesicles capable of storing and releasing d-serine, l-glutamate, and most likely other neuromodulators in an activity-dependent manner. PMID:23426669

  15. Dynamic remodeling of scaffold interactions in dendritic spines controls synaptic excitability

    PubMed Central

    Moutin, Enora; Raynaud, Fabrice; Roger, Jonathan; Pellegrino, Emilie; Homburger, Vincent; Bertaso, Federica; Ollendorff, Vincent; Bockaert, Joël; Fagni, Laurent

    2012-01-01

    Scaffolding proteins interact with membrane receptors to control signaling pathways and cellular functions. However, the dynamics and specific roles of interactions between different components of scaffold complexes are poorly understood because of the dearth of methods available to monitor binding interactions. Using a unique combination of single-cell bioluminescence resonance energy transfer imaging in living neurons and electrophysiological recordings, in this paper, we depict the role of glutamate receptor scaffold complex remodeling in space and time to control synaptic transmission. Despite a broad colocalization of the proteins in neurons, we show that spine-confined assembly/disassembly of this scaffold complex, physiologically triggered by sustained activation of synaptic NMDA (N-methyl-d-aspartate) receptors, induces physical association between ionotropic (NMDA) and metabotropic (mGlu5a) synaptic glutamate receptors. This physical interaction results in an mGlu5a receptor–mediated inhibition of NMDA currents, providing an activity-dependent negative feedback loop on NMDA receptor activity. Such protein scaffold remodeling represents a form of homeostatic control of synaptic excitability. PMID:22801779

  16. Dietary cholesterol concentration affects synaptic plasticity and dendrite spine morphology of rabbit hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Wang, Desheng; Zheng, Wen

    2015-10-01

    Previous studies have shown dietary cholesterol can enhance learning but retard memory which may be partly due to increased cholesterol levels in hippocampus and reduced afterhyperpolarization (AHP) amplitude of hippocampal CA1 neurons. This study explored the dose-dependent effect of dietary cholesterol on synaptic plasticity of rabbit hippocampal CA1 neurons and spine morphology, the postsynaptic structures responsible for synaptic plasticity. Field potential recordings revealed a low concentration of dietary cholesterol increased long-term potentiation (LTP) expression while high concentrations produced a pronounced reduction in LTP expression. Dietary cholesterol facilitated basal synaptic transmission but did not influence presynaptic function. DiI staining showed dietary cholesterol induced alterations in dendrite spine morphology characterized by increased mushroom spine density and decreased thin spine density, two kinds of dendritic spines that may be linked to memory consolidation and learning acquisition. Dietary cholesterol also modulated the geometric measures of mushroom spines. Therefore, dietary cholesterol dose-dependently modulated both synaptic plasticity and dendrite spine morphologies of hippocampal CA1 neurons that could mediate learning and memory changes previously seen to result from feeding a cholesterol diet. PMID:26188241

  17. Facilitation of AMPA Receptor Synaptic Delivery as a Molecular Mechanism for Cognitive Enhancement

    PubMed Central

    Sánchez-Puelles, Cristina; Pereda-Peréz, Inmaculada; Franco, Ana; Sandi, Carmen; Suárez, Luz M.; Solís, José M.; Alonso-Nanclares, Lidia; Martín, Eduardo D.; Merino-Serrais, Paula; Borcel, Erika; Li, Shizhong; Chen, Yongshuo; Gonzalez-Soriano, Juncal; Berezin, Vladimir; Bock, Elisabeth; DeFelipe, Javier; Esteban, José A.

    2012-01-01

    Cell adhesion molecules and downstream growth factor-dependent signaling are critical for brain development and synaptic plasticity, and they have been linked to cognitive function in adult animals. We have previously developed a mimetic peptide (FGL) from the neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) that enhances spatial learning and memory in rats. We have now investigated the cellular and molecular basis of this cognitive enhancement, using biochemical, morphological, electrophysiological, and behavioral analyses. We have found that FGL triggers a long-lasting enhancement of synaptic transmission in hippocampal CA1 neurons. This effect is mediated by a facilitated synaptic delivery of AMPA receptors, which is accompanied by enhanced NMDA receptor-dependent long-term potentiation (LTP). Both LTP and cognitive enhancement are mediated by an initial PKC activation, which is followed by persistent CaMKII activation. These results provide a mechanistic link between facilitation of AMPA receptor synaptic delivery and improved hippocampal-dependent learning, induced by a pharmacological cognitive enhancer. PMID:22363206

  18. Obesity-driven synaptic remodeling affects endocannabinoid control of orexinergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Cristino, Luigia; Busetto, Giuseppe; Imperatore, Roberta; Ferrandino, Ida; Palomba, Letizia; Silvestri, Cristoforo; Petrosino, Stefania; Orlando, Pierangelo; Bentivoglio, Marina; Mackie, Kenneth; Di Marzo, Vincenzo

    2013-01-01

    Acute or chronic alterations in energy status alter the balance between excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission and associated synaptic plasticity to allow for the adaptation of energy metabolism to new homeostatic requirements. The impact of such changes on endocannabinoid and cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1)-mediated modulation of synaptic transmission and strength is not known, despite the fact that this signaling system is an important target for the development of new drugs against obesity. We investigated whether CB1-expressing excitatory vs. inhibitory inputs to orexin-A–containing neurons in the lateral hypothalamus are altered in obesity and how this modifies endocannabinoid control of these neurons. In lean mice, these inputs are mostly excitatory. By confocal and ultrastructural microscopic analyses, we observed that in leptin-knockout (ob/ob) obese mice, and in mice with diet-induced obesity, orexinergic neurons receive predominantly inhibitory CB1-expressing inputs and overexpress the biosynthetic enzyme for the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol, which retrogradely inhibits synaptic transmission at CB1-expressing axon terminals. Patch-clamp recordings also showed increased CB1-sensitive inhibitory innervation of orexinergic neurons in ob/ob mice. These alterations are reversed by leptin administration, partly through activation of the mammalian target of rapamycin pathway in neuropeptide-Y-ergic neurons of the arcuate nucleus, and are accompanied by CB1-mediated enhancement of orexinergic innervation of target brain areas. We propose that enhanced inhibitory control of orexin-A neurons, and their CB1-mediated disinhibition, are a consequence of leptin signaling impairment in the arcuate nucleus. We also provide initial evidence of the participation of this phenomenon in hyperphagia and hormonal dysregulation in obesity. PMID:23630288

  19. Genetic analysis of synaptogyrin function in the synaptic vesicle cycle

    E-print Network

    Stevens, Robin J

    2012-01-01

    Neuronal communication relies on the continual replenishment of synaptic vesicles that are primed for neurotransmitter release in response to action potentials. A vast array of proteins is required to mediate synaptic ...

  20. Synaptic plasticity in the MyosinVa mutant mouse

    E-print Network

    Tunca, Cansu, 1977-

    2009-01-01

    The trafficking of essential proteins into spines is an important aspect of synaptic plasticity. MyosinVa, an actin-based motor protein, has been implicated in the synaptic delivery of AMPARs during LTP [1]. However an ...

  1. Spontaneous dynamics and response properties of a Hodgkin-Huxley-type neuron model driven by harmonic synaptic noise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nguyen, H.; Neiman, A. B.

    2010-09-01

    We study statistical properties, response dynamics, and information transmission in a Hodgkin-Huxley-type neuron system, modeling peripheral electroreceptors in paddlefish. In addition to sodium and potassium currents, the neuron model includes fast calcium and slow afterhyperpolarization (AHP) potassium currents. The synaptic transmission from sensory epithelium is modeled by a Poission process with a rate modulated by narrow-band noise, mimicking stochastic epithelial oscillations observed experimentally. We study how the interplay of parameters of AHP current and synaptic noise affects the statistics of spontaneous dynamics and response properties of the system. In particular, we confirm predictions made earlier with perfect integrate and fire and phase neuron models that epithelial oscillations enhance stimulus-response coherence and thus information transmission in electroreceptor system. In addition, we consider a strong stimulus regime and show that coherent epithelial oscillations may reduce variability of electroreceptor responses to time-varying stimuli.

  2. Heterosynaptic Plasticity Prevents Runaway Synaptic Dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jen-Yung; Lonjers, Peter; Lee, Christopher; Chistiakova, Marina; Volgushev, Maxim

    2013-01-01

    Spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) and other conventional Hebbian-type plasticity rules are prone to produce runaway dynamics of synaptic weights. Once potentiated, a synapse would have higher probability to lead to spikes and thus to be further potentiated, but once depressed, a synapse would tend to be further depressed. The runaway synaptic dynamics can be prevented by precisely balancing STDP rules for potentiation and depression; however, experimental evidence shows a great variety of potentiation and depression windows and magnitudes. Here we show that modifications of synapses to layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons from rat visual and auditory cortices in slices can be induced by intracellular tetanization: bursts of postsynaptic spikes without presynaptic stimulation. Induction of these heterosynaptic changes depended on the rise of intracellular calcium, and their direction and magnitude correlated with initial state of release mechanisms. We suggest that this type of plasticity serves as a mechanism that stabilizes the distribution of synaptic weights and prevents their runaway dynamics. To test this hypothesis, we develop a cortical neuron model implementing both homosynaptic (STDP) and heterosynaptic plasticity with properties matching the experimental data. We find that heterosynaptic plasticity effectively prevented runaway dynamics for the tested range of STDP and input parameters. Synaptic weights, although shifted from the original, remained normally distributed and nonsaturated. Our study presents a biophysically constrained model of how the interaction of different forms of plasticity—Hebbian and heterosynaptic—may prevent runaway synaptic dynamics and keep synaptic weights unsaturated and thus capable of further plastic changes and formation of new memories. PMID:24089497

  3. On and off domains of geniculate afferents in cat primary visual cortex

    E-print Network

    Ruthazer, Edward

    of the macaque9, cat10,11, ferret12, tree shrew13 and mink14, with off-center afferents being found in layers to cluster in ferrets18 and minks19. Moreover, in the tree shrew, a species where ocular dominance segregates

  4. The reflex responses of single motor units in human hand muscles following muscle afferent stimulation.

    PubMed Central

    Buller, N P; Garnett, R; Stephens, J A

    1980-01-01

    1. Changes in the probability of firing of motor units active during voluntary muscle contraction have been studied in human first and second dorsal interosseous muscles in response to muscle afferent stimulation. 2. Short latency, possibly monosynaptic, excitatory responses were found in both first and second dorsal interosseous muscles following brief mechanical pulses applied to the belly of first dorsal interosseous. A second longer latency excitatory response followed the first with a mean latency of 25 msec. 3. All units in both muscles showed qualitatively the same responses but units recruited at low levels of voluntary contraction strength were more responsive to muscle afferent input than units recruited at high contraction strengths. The excitatory effect of muscle afferent input within the two motoneurone pools appears to be weighted in the same way as the more complicated input associated with a gradually increasing voluntary contraction. 4. These findings are discussed in relation to the relative importance of short and long latency reflex effects of muscle afferent input in the control of hand movements. PMID:7431236

  5. Population Coding of Forelimb Joint Kinematics by Peripheral Afferents in Monkeys

    E-print Network

    Kawato, Mitsuo

    Population Coding of Forelimb Joint Kinematics by Peripheral Afferents in Monkeys Tatsuya Umeda1 Sciences (NINS), Okazaki, Japan, 2 Department of Neurophysiology, National Institute of Neuroscience, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Kodaira, Japan, 3 PRESTO, Japan Science and Technology Agency

  6. Single tactile afferents outperform human subjects in a vibrotactile intensity discrimination task.

    PubMed

    Arabzadeh, Ehsan; Clifford, Colin W G; Harris, Justin A; Mahns, David A; Macefield, Vaughan G; Birznieks, Ingvars

    2014-11-15

    We simultaneously compared the sensitivity of single primary afferent neurons supplying the glabrous skin of the hand and the psychophysical amplitude discrimination thresholds in human subjects for a set of vibrotactile stimuli delivered to the receptive field. All recorded afferents had a dynamic range narrower than the range of amplitudes across which the subjects could discriminate. However, when the vibration amplitude was chosen to be within the steepest part of the afferent's stimulus-response function the response of single afferents, defined as the spike count over the vibration duration (500 ms), was often more sensitive in discriminating vibration amplitude than the perceptual judgment of the participants. We quantified how the neuronal performance depended on the integration window: for short windows the neuronal performance was inferior to the performance of the subject. The neuronal performance progressively improved with increasing spike count duration and reached a level significantly above that of the subjects when the integration window was 250 ms or longer. The superiority in performance of individual neurons over observers could reflect a nonoptimal integration window or be due to the presence of noise between the sensory periphery and the cortical decision stage. Additionally, it could indicate that the range of perceptual sensitivity comes at the cost of discrimination through pooling across neurons with different response functions. PMID:25143540

  7. Human C-Tactile Afferents Are Tuned to the Temperature of a Skin-Stroking Caress

    PubMed Central

    Backlund Wasling, Helena; Liljencrantz, Jaquette; Olausson, Håkan; Johnson, Richard D.; Wessberg, Johan

    2014-01-01

    Human C-tactile (CT) afferents respond vigorously to gentle skin stroking and have gained attention for their importance in social touch. Pharmacogenetic activation of the mouse CT equivalent has positively reinforcing, anxiolytic effects, suggesting a role in grooming and affiliative behavior. We recorded from single CT axons in human participants, using the technique of microneurography, and stimulated a unit's receptive field using a novel, computer-controlled moving probe, which stroked the skin of the forearm over five velocities (0.3, 1, 3, 10, and 30 cm s?1) at three temperatures (cool, 18°C; neutral, 32°C; warm, 42°C). We show that CTs are unique among mechanoreceptive afferents: they discharged preferentially to slowly moving stimuli at a neutral (typical skin) temperature, rather than at the cooler or warmer stimulus temperatures. In contrast, myelinated hair mechanoreceptive afferents proportionally increased their firing frequency with stroking velocity and showed no temperature modulation. Furthermore, the CT firing frequency correlated with hedonic ratings to the same mechano-thermal stimulus only at the neutral stimulus temperature, where the stimuli were felt as pleasant at higher firing rates. We conclude that CT afferents are tuned to respond to tactile stimuli with the specific characteristics of a gentle caress delivered at typical skin temperature. This provides a peripheral mechanism for signaling pleasant skin-to-skin contact in humans, which promotes interpersonal touch and affiliative behavior. PMID:24553929

  8. A dynamical systems analysis of afferent control in a neuromechanical model of locomotion. I. Rhythm generation

    PubMed Central

    Spardy, Lucy E.; Markin, Sergey N.; Shevtsova, Natalia A.; Prilutsky, Boris I.; Rybak, Ilya A.; Rubin, Jonathan E.

    2012-01-01

    Locomotion in mammals is controlled by a spinal central pattern generator (CPG) coupled to a biomechanical limb system, with afferent feedback to the spinal circuits and CPG closing the control loop. We have considered a simplified model of this system, in which the CPG establishes a rhythm when a supra-spinal activating drive is present and afferent signals from a single-joint limb feed back to affect CPG operation. Using dynamical systems methods, in a series of two papers, we analyze the mechanisms by which this model produces oscillations, and the characteristics of these oscillations, in the closed and open loop regimes. In this first paper, we analyze the phase transition mechanisms operating within the CPG and use the results to explain how afferent feedback allows oscillations to occur at a wider range of drive values to the CPG than the range over which oscillations occur in the CPG without feedback and to comment on why stronger feedback leads to faster oscillations. Linking these transitions to structure in the phase plane associated with the limb segment clarifies how increased weights of afferent feedback to the CPG can restore locomotion after removal of supra-spinal drive to simulate spinal cord injury. PMID:22058274

  9. Differential Role of Inhibition in Habituation of Two Independent Afferent Pathways to a Common Motor Output

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bristol, Adam S.; Carew, Thomas J.

    2005-01-01

    Many studies of the neural mechanisms of learning have focused on habituation, a simple form of learning in which a response decrements with repeated stimulation. In the siphon-elicited siphon withdrawal reflex (S-SWR) of the marine mollusk "Aplysia," the prevailing view is that homosynaptic depression of primary sensory afferents underlies…

  10. Excitant amino acids and audiogenic seizures in the genetically epilepsy-prone rat. I. Afferent seizure initiation pathway.

    PubMed

    Faingold, C L; Millan, M H; Boersma, C A; Meldrum, B S

    1988-03-01

    The afferent pathway involved in initiation of audiogenic seizures in the genetically epilepsy-prone rat was investigated by bilateral microinfusion of the excitant amino acid antagonist 2-amino-7-phosphonoheptanoate into the major brain stem and subcortical nuclei of the auditory system. This antagonist has been shown to possess anticonvulsant properties in other seizure models, and an excitant amino acid has been implicated as a putative neurotransmitter in several of these nuclei. Seizure severity was significantly reduced following infusion of this agent into the cochlear nucleus, superior olivary complex, inferior colliculus, and medial geniculate body. Many of these animals exhibited a complete blockade of seizures. The smallest effective dose in the cochlear nucleus and the medial geniculate body was 5 nmol per side. The smallest effective dose in the olive was 1 nmol, and in the inferior colliculus 0.1 nmol per side was protective. The onset of anticonvulsant effectiveness was earliest in the inferior colliculus. These findings showed that the inferior colliculus was the most sensitive auditory center to the anticonvulsant action of 2-amino-7-phosphonoheptanoate and that imbalance between inhibitory and excitatory transmission within this brain structure may be crucial in the initiation of audiogenic seizures in the genetically epilepsy-prone rat. PMID:3342850

  11. Incorporating synaptic time-dependent plasticity and dynamic synapse into a computational model of wind-up.

    PubMed

    Farajidavar, Aydin; Saeb, Sohrab; Behbehani, Khosrow

    2008-01-01

    "Wind-up", a condition related to chronic pain, is a form of plasticity in spinal dorsal horn that can be observed during electrical stimulation of pain receptors at low frequencies (0.3-3 Hz). In this paper, we present a computational model to explain several aspects of wind-up. The core of this model is the interplay of spike-time-dependent plasticity (STDP), short-term synaptic plasticity (STP), and different propagation velocities of the three afferent fibers (C, Adelta, and Abeta). We utilize Izhikevich's simple spiking neuron to model a dorsal horn neuron (DHN) of the spinal cord. To achieve the expected results, the model parameters need to adapt to the frequency response which is motivated by biological results. The adaptation is performed by a genetic algorithm (GA), and the resulting optimized values interestingly lie in biological ranges. Based on the proposed model, we suggest that STP may be the origin of the band-pass behavior of wind-up between 0.3 and 3 Hz; while the STDP-based long-term plasticity can be responsible for the synaptic potentiation leading to wind-up, or similar phenomena such as central sensitization. Understanding the mechanisms underlying wind-up generation might allow clarification of the molecular mechanisms of pain signaling and development of strategies, such as transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), for pain treatment. PMID:18242953

  12. Efferent Vestibular Neurons Show Homogenous Discharge Output But Heterogeneous Synaptic Input Profile In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Mathews, Miranda A.; Murray, Andrew; Wijesinghe, Rajiv; Cullen, Karen; Tung, Victoria W. K.; Camp, Aaron J.