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Science. 2003 Mar 21;299(5614):1902-5.

Identified sources and targets of slow inhibition in the neocortex.

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  • 1Department of Comparative Physiology, University of Szeged, Közép fasor 52, Szeged H-6726, Hungary. gtamas@bio.u-szeged.hu


There are two types of inhibitory postsynaptic potentials in the cerebral cortex. Fast inhibition is mediated by ionotropic gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABA(A)) receptors, and slow inhibition is due to metabotropic GABA(B) receptors. Several neuron classes elicit inhibitory postsynaptic potentials through GABA(A) receptors, but possible distinct sources of slow inhibition remain unknown. We identified a class of GABAergic interneurons, the neurogliaform cells, that, in contrast to other GABA-releasing cells, elicited combined GABA(A) and GABA(B) receptor-mediated responses with single action potentials and that predominantly targeted the dendritic spines of pyramidal neurons. Slow inhibition evoked by a distinct interneuron in spatially restricted postsynaptic compartments could locally and selectively modulate cortical excitability.

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