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Neuron. 2000 Sep;27(3):539-50.

Actin-dependent regulation of neurotransmitter release at central synapses.

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Division of Biology, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla 92093, USA.


Depolymerization of actin by latrunculin A transiently promotes neurotransmitter release. The mean rate of mEPSCs increases by a Ca2+-independent process, without a concomitant change in the mean amplitude. The readily releasable vesicle pool size and the rate of refilling of the readily releasable pool remain unaltered by latrunculin treatment. Evoked neurotransmitter release also increases in a manner consistent with an increase in vesicle release probability. The observed enhancement of neurotransmitter release is specific to actin depolymerization mediated by latrunculin A and is not caused by cytochalasin D. Our findings indicate that actin participates in a regulatory mechanism that restrains fusion of synaptic vesicles at the active zone.

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