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Neuron. 1997 Mar;18(3):483-91.

Mitochondrial involvement in post-tetanic potentiation of synaptic transmission.

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Division of Neurobiology, University of California, Berkeley 94720-3200, USA.


Posttetanic potentiation (PTP) is an essential aspect of synaptic transmission that arises from a persistent presynaptic [Ca2+]i following tetanic stimulation. At crayfish neuromuscular junctions, several inhibitors of mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake and release (tetraphenylphosphonium or TPP+, carbonyl cyanide m-chlorophenylhydrazone or CCCP, and ruthenium red) blocked PTP and the persistence of presynaptic residual [Ca2+]i, while endoplasmic reticulum (ER) Ca2+ pump inhibitors and release channel activators (thapsigargin, 2,5-di-(tert-butyl)-1,4-benzohydroquinone or BHQ, and caffeine) had no effects. PTP apparently results from the slow efflux of tetanically accumulated mitochondrial Ca2+.

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