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J Neurosci. 1999 Mar 1;19(5):1566-76.

Developmental synaptic changes increase the range of integrative capabilities of an identified excitatory neocortical connection.

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  • 1Neurobiologie et Diversité Cellulaire, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Unité Mixte de Recherche 7637, Ecole Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles de la ville de Paris, 75231 Paris Cedex 5, France.

Abstract

Excitatory synaptic transmission between pyramidal cells and fast-spiking (FS) interneurons of layer V of the motor cortex was investigated in acute slices by using paired recordings at 30 degrees C combined with morphological analysis. The presynaptic and postsynaptic properties at these identified central synapses were compared between 3- and 5-week-old rats. At these two postnatal developmental stages, unitary EPSCs were mediated by the activation of AMPA receptors with fast kinetics at a holding potential of -72 mV. The amplitude distribution analysis of the EPSCs indicates that, at both stages, pyramidal-FS connections consisted of multiple functional release sites. The apparent quantal size obtained by decreasing the external calcium ([Ca2+]e) varied from 11 to 29 pA near resting membrane potential. In young rats, pairs of presynaptic action potentials elicited unitary synaptic responses that displayed paired-pulse depression at all tested frequencies. In older animals, inputs from different pyramidal cells onto the same FS interneuron had different paired-pulse response characteristics and, at most of these connections, a switch from depression to facilitation occurred when decreasing the rate of presynaptic stimulation. The balance between facilitation and depression endows pyramidal-FS connections from 5-week-old animals with wide integrative capabilities and confers unique functional properties to each synapse.

PMID:
10024344
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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