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Neuroscience. 1994 Sep;62(2):391-7.

Interaction between paired-pulse facilitation and long-term potentiation in area CA1 of guinea-pig hippocampal slices: application of quantal analysis.

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Max-Planck Institute of Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen, Germany.


The aim of the study was to further specify mechanisms of maintenance of hippocampal long-term potentiation. Previous analysis of excitatory postsynaptic potentials showed increases in quantal content (mean number of neurotransmitter quanta released by every testing pulse) with smaller increases in quantal size (effect of one transmitter quantum) following long-term potentiation induction. Here we recorded intracellularly excitatory postsynaptic potentials from CA1 pyramidal neurons of guinea-pig hippocampal slices after minimal paired-pulse stimulation of monosynaptic inputs. Statistical parameters underlying excitatory postsynaptic potential fluctuations were estimated by a deconvolution procedure using a quantal model. The parameters of excitatory postsynaptic potentials following paired-pulse stimulation were studied before and after induction of long-term potentiation. Under both conditions, paired-pulse facilitation was found to be accompanied by increases in quantal content and quantal size. During long-term potentiation, paired-pulse facilitation of amplitude and quantal content was lower. The respective changes in the paired-pulse facilitation ratios correlated with long-term potentiation magnitude. In contrast, the paired-pulse facilitation of quantal size did not change significantly following long-term potentiation induction. The results are compatible with the existence of two separate mechanisms of long-term potentiation maintenance. They support the suggestion that changes in quantal content are mainly due to presynaptic mechanisms which are shared by long-term potentiation and paired-pulse facilitation. The mechanisms underlying changes in quantal size are of a different nature for long-term potentiation and paired-pulse facilitation. For long-term potentiation they might be located postsynaptically.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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