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Spontaneous glutamatergic activity induces a BDNF-dependent potentiation of GABAergic synapses in the newborn rat hippocampus.

Abstract : Spontaneous ongoing synaptic activity is thought to play an instructive role in the maturation of the neuronal circuits. However the type of synaptic activity involved and how this activity is translated into structural and functional changes is not fully understood. Here we show that ongoing glutamatergic synaptic activity triggers a long-lasting potentiation of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) mediated synaptic activity (LLP(GABA-A)) in the developing rat hippocampus. LLP(GABA-A) induction requires (i) the activation of AMPA receptors and L-type voltage-dependent calcium channels, (ii) the release of endogenous brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and (iii) the activation of postsynaptic tropomyosin-related kinase receptors B (TrkB). We found that spontaneous glutamatergic activity is required to maintain a high level of native BDNF in the newborn rat hippocampus and that application of exogenous BDNF induced LLP(GABA-A) in the absence of glutamatergic activity. These results suggest that ongoing glutamatergic synaptic activity plays a pivotal role in the functional maturation of hippocampal GABAergic synapses by means of a cascade involving BDNF release and downstream signalling through postsynaptic TrkB receptor activation.
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Submitted on : Friday, May 14, 2010 - 2:03:16 PM
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Nicola Kuczewski, Anais Langlois, Hervé Fiorentino, Stéphanie Bonnet, Thomas Marissal, et al.. Spontaneous glutamatergic activity induces a BDNF-dependent potentiation of GABAergic synapses in the newborn rat hippocampus.. The Journal of Physiology, Wiley, 2008, 586 (Pt 21), pp.5119-28. ⟨10.1113/jphysiol.2008.158550⟩. ⟨inserm-00483526⟩

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