Document Detail

Electrical transmission between mammalian neurons is supported by a small fraction of gap junction channels.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22729690     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Electrical synapses formed by gap junctions between neurons create networks of electrically coupled neurons in the mammalian brain, where these networks have been found to play important functional roles. In most cases, interneuronal gap junctions occur at remote dendro-dendritic contacts, making difficult accurate characterization of their physiological properties and correlation of these properties with their anatomical and morphological features of the gap junctions. In the mesencephalic trigeminal (MesV) nucleus where neurons are readily accessible for paired electrophysiological recordings in brain stem slices, our recent data indicate that electrical transmission between MesV neurons is mediated by connexin36 (Cx36)-containing gap junctions located at somato-somatic contacts. We here review evidence indicating that electrical transmission between these neurons is supported by a very small fraction of the gap junction channels present at cell-cell contacts. Acquisition of this evidence was enabled by the unprecedented experimental access of electrical synapses between MesV neurons, which allowed estimation of the average number of open channels mediating electrical coupling in relation to the average number of gap junction channels present at these contacts. Our results indicate that only a small proportion of channels (~0.1 %) appear to be conductive. On the basis of similarities with other preparations, we postulate that this phenomenon might constitute a general property of vertebrate electrical synapses, reflecting essential aspects of gap junction function and maintenance.
Sebastian Curti; Gregory Hoge; James I Nagy; Alberto E Pereda
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2012-06-24
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of membrane biology     Volume:  245     ISSN:  1432-1424     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Membr. Biol.     Publication Date:  2012 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-07-23     Completed Date:  2012-12-14     Revised Date:  2014-04-08    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0211301     Medline TA:  J Membr Biol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  283-90     Citation Subset:  IM    
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MeSH Terms
Cell Communication / physiology
Connexins / metabolism*
Gap Junctions / metabolism*
Neurons / metabolism*
Rats, Sprague-Dawley
Rats, Wistar
Synaptic Transmission / physiology
Grant Support
DC03186/DC/NIDCD NIH HHS; NS0552827/NS/NINDS NIH HHS; NS44395/NS/NINDS NIH HHS; //Canadian Institutes of Health Research
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Connexins; 0/connexin 36

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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