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Cereb Cortex. 2017 Jun 1;27(6):3186-3207. doi: 10.1093/cercor/bhw143.

Distinct Functional Groups Emerge from the Intrinsic Properties of Molecularly Identified Entorhinal Interneurons and Principal Cells.

Author information

Center for Memory and Brain.
Center for Systems Neuroscience.
Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Boston University, Boston, MA 02215, USA.
Department of Neurobiology.
Kavli Institute for Neuroscience, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520-8001, USA.
Interdepartmental Program in Neuroscience, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520-8001, USA.


Inhibitory interneurons are an important source of synaptic inputs that may contribute to network mechanisms for coding of spatial location by entorhinal cortex (EC). The intrinsic properties of inhibitory interneurons in the EC of the mouse are mostly undescribed. Intrinsic properties were recorded from known cell types, such as, stellate and pyramidal cells and 6 classes of molecularly identified interneurons (regulator of calcineurin 2, somatostatin, serotonin receptor 3a, neuropeptide Y neurogliaform (NGF), neuropeptide Y non-NGF, and vasoactive intestinal protein) in acute brain slices. We report a broad physiological diversity between and within cell classes. We also found differences in the ability to produce postinhibitory rebound spikes and in the frequency and amplitude of incoming EPSPs. To understand the source of this intrinsic variability we applied hierarchical cluster analysis to functionally classify neurons. These analyses revealed physiologically derived cell types in EC that mostly corresponded to the lines identified by biomarkers with a few unexpected and important differences. Finally, we reduced the complex multidimensional space of intrinsic properties to the most salient five that predicted the cellular biomolecular identity with 81.4% accuracy. These results provide a framework for the classification of functional subtypes of cortical neurons by their intrinsic membrane properties.


cell functional classification; entorhinal cortex; grid cells; interneurons; intrinsic properties

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