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Science. 2006 Jun 9;312(5779):1533-7.

Long-term potentiation of neuron-glia synapses mediated by Ca2+-permeable AMPA receptors.

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Institute of Neuroscience and Key Laboratory of Neurobiology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 200031, China.


Interactions between neurons and glial cells in the brain may serve important functions in the development, maintenance, and plasticity of neural circuits. Fast neuron-glia synaptic transmission has been found between hippocampal neurons and NG2 cells, a distinct population of macroglia-like cells widely distributed in the brain. We report that these neuron-glia synapses undergo activity-dependent modifications analogous to long-term potentiation (LTP) at excitatory synapses, a hallmark of neuronal plasticity. However, unlike the induction of LTP at many neuron-neuron synapses, both induction and expression of LTP at neuron-NG2 synapses involve Ca2+-permeable AMPA receptors on NG2 cells.

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