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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2008 Jan 15;105(2):775-80. doi: 10.1073/pnas.0706447105. Epub 2008 Jan 3.

Homeostatic regulation of AMPA receptor expression at single hippocampal synapses.

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  • 1Department of Biology, Boston University, 5 Cummington Street, Boston, MA 02215, USA.


Homeostatic synaptic response is an important measure in confining neuronal activity within a narrow physiological range. Whether or not homeostatic plasticity demonstrates synapse specificity, a key feature characteristic of Hebbian-type plasticity, is largely unknown. Here, we report that in cultured hippocampal neurons, alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazole-4-propionic acid subtype glutamate receptor (AMPAR) accumulation is increased selectively in chronically inhibited single synapses, whereas the neighboring normal synapses remain unaffected. This synapse-specific homeostatic regulation depends on the disparity of synaptic activity and is mediated by GluR2-lacking AMPARs and PI3-kinase signaling. These results demonstrate the existence of synaptic specificity and the crucial role of AMPAR-gated calcium in homeostatic plasticity in central neurons.

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