Dendritic calcium accumulation regulates wind sensitivity via short-term depression at cercal sensory-to-giant interneuron synapses in the cricket

Hiroto Ogawa, Yoshichika Baba, Kotaro Oka

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An in vivo Ca2+ imaging technique was applied to examine the cellular mechanisms for attenuation of wind sensitivity in the identified primary sensory interneurons in the cricket cercal system. Simultaneous measurement of the cytosolic Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) and membrane potential of a wind-sensitive giant interneuron (GI) revealed that successive air puffs caused the Ca2+ accumulation in dendrites and diminished the wind-evoked bursting response in the GI. After tetanic stimulation of the presynaptic cercal sensory nerves induced a larger Ca2+ accumulation in the GI, the wind-evoked bursting response was reversibly decreased in its spike number. When hyperpolarizing current injection suppressed the [Ca2+]i elevation during tetanic stimulation, the wind-evoked EPSPs were not changed. Moreover, after suprathreshold tetanic stimulation to one side of the cercal nerve resulted in Ca2+ accumulation in the GI's dendrites, the slope of EPSP evoked by presynaptic stimulation of the other side of the cercal nerve was also attenuated for a few minutes after the [Ca2+]i had returned to the prestimulation level. This short-term depression at synapses between the cercal sensory neurons and the GI (cercal-to-giant synapses) was also induced by a depolarizing current injection, which increased the [Ca2+]i, and buffering of the Ca2+ rise with a high concentration of a Ca2+ chelator blocked the induction of short-term depression. These results indicate that the postsynaptic Ca2+ accumulation causes short-term synaptic depression at the cercal-to-giant synapses. The dendritic excitability of the GI may contribute to postsynaptic regulation of the wind-sensitivity via Ca2+-dependent depression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)301-313
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Neurobiology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2001 Mar 3



  • Active dendrite
  • Calcium
  • Cricket
  • Giant interneuron
  • Short-term synaptic depression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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