Properties of glutamatergic synapses in immature layer Vb pyramidal neurons: coupling of pre- and postsynaptic maturational states.
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SourceExperimental Brain Research, 200, 2, (2010), pp. 169-182
1 januari 2010
Article / Letter to editor
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Experimental Brain Research
SubjectDCN 3: Neuroinformatics
Following initial contact formation, glutamatergic synapses in cortical neurons undergo pronounced functional maturation. These maturational events, occurring both pre- and postsynaptically, have been well described in the developing hippocampus. In this paper, we characterized glutamatergic synapses in immature layer Vb pyramidal neurons of the mouse somatosensory cortex during early postnatal development. At postnatal day 7, a significant subpopulation of glutamatergic synapses exhibited a low release probability that was accompanied by strong paired-pulse facilitation of AMPA EPSCs (paired-pulse ratio C > or = 2). Increasing extracellular Ca(2+) concentration increased release probability and led to paired-pulse depression. During further postnatal development, these functionally immature synapses disappeared. As shown pharmacologically,these synapses expressed postsynaptic NMDA receptors containing NR2B subunits, while NMDA receptors with NR2A subunits were lacking. Taken together, a low release probability presynaptically was coupled to postsynaptic NR2B signaling. This subpopulation of neocortical synapses thus differed from the majority of synapses in the developing hippocampus, where high release probability is coupled to NR2B signaling. The novel type of functionally immature glutamatergic synapse described here might play an important role in early developmental synapse elimination and in the activity-dependent refinement of the neocortical synaptic microcircuitry.
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