Synaptically activated increases in Ca2+ concentration in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells are primarily due to voltage-gated Ca2+ channels. Academic Article uri icon


  • Changes in intracellular Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) in the soma and dendrites of hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons were measured using intracellularly injected fura-2. A large component of the [Ca2+]i elevation caused by high frequency stimulation of the Schaffer collaterals was correlated with the Na+ spikes triggered by the excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs). These spikes were generated in the soma and proximal dendrites and stimulated Ca2+ entry through voltage-gated Ca2+ channels. Suppressing spikes by hyperpolarizing the soma or by injecting QX-314 revealed a smaller nonspike component of Ca2+ entry. A substantial fraction of this component was mediated by the action of the EPSPs on voltage-gated Ca2+ channels, because it persisted in 2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid and because it was usually reduced when Ca2+ channel activity was suppressed by hyperpolarization. Ca2+ entry through the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor channel could not be detected with certainty, perhaps because it was highly localized.

publication date

  • December 1992

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