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J Cell Biol November 10, 2003; 163 (3): 511-23.

Ca2+ influx-independent synaptic potentiation mediated by mitochondrial Na(+)-Ca2+ exchanger and protein kinase C.

Yang F , He XP , Russell J , Lu B .

Activity-dependent modulation of synaptic transmission is an essential mechanism underlying many brain functions. Here we report an unusual form of synaptic modulation that depends on Na+ influx and mitochondrial Na(+)-Ca2+ exchanger, but not on Ca2+ influx. In Ca(2+)-free medium, tetanic stimulation of Xenopus motoneurons induced a striking potentiation of transmitter release at neuromuscular synapses. Inhibition of either Na+ influx or the rise of Ca2+ concentrations ([Ca2+]i) at nerve terminals prevented the tetanus-induced synaptic potentiation (TISP). Blockade of Ca2+ release from mitochondrial Na(+)-Ca2+ exchanger, but not from ER Ca2+ stores, also inhibited TISP. Tetanic stimulation in Ca(2+)-free medium elicited an increase in [Ca2+]i, which was prevented by inhibition of Na+ influx or mitochondrial Ca2+ release. Inhibition of PKC blocked the TISP as well as mitochondrial Ca2+ release. These results reveal a novel form of synaptic plasticity and suggest a role of PKC in mitochondrial Ca2+ release during synaptic transmission.

PubMed ID: 14610054
PMC ID: PMC2173636
Article link: J Cell Biol

Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: bdnf camk2g ntf3 ntrk2 tac1

Article Images: [+] show captions
References [+] :
Berridge, Neuronal calcium signaling. 1998, Pubmed