Nanodomain coupling explains Ca²⁺ independence of transmitter release time course at a fast central synapse

Itaru Arai, Peter Jonas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A puzzling property of synaptic transmission, originally established at the neuromuscular junction, is that the time course of transmitter release is independent of the extracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)]o), whereas the rate of release is highly [Ca(2+)]o-dependent. Here, we examine the time course of release at inhibitory basket cell-Purkinje cell synapses and show that it is independent of [Ca(2+)]o. Modeling of Ca(2+)-dependent transmitter release suggests that the invariant time course of release critically depends on tight coupling between Ca(2+) channels and release sensors. Experiments with exogenous Ca(2+) chelators reveal that channel-sensor coupling at basket cell-Purkinje cell synapses is very tight, with a mean distance of 10-20 nm. Thus, tight channel-sensor coupling provides a mechanistic explanation for the apparent [Ca(2+)]o independence of the time course of release.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere04057
JournaleLife
Volume3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Keywords

  • Ca2+ channels
  • GABAergic synapses
  • cerebellar basket cells
  • mouse
  • nanodomain coupling
  • neuroscience
  • release sensors
  • time course of transmitter release

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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