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Cooperation between independent hippocampal synapses is controlled by glutamate uptake

Nature Neuroscience volume 5, pages 325331 (2002) | Download Citation

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  • An Erratum to this article was published on 01 May 2002

Abstract

Localized action of released neurotransmitters is the basis for synaptic independence. In the hippocampal neuropil, where synapses are densely packed, it has been postulated that released glutamate, by diffusing out of the synaptic cleft, may also activate postsynaptic receptors at neighboring synapses. Here we show that neighboring excitatory synapses on hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells can cooperate in the activation of postsynaptic receptors through the confluence of released glutamate, and that this cooperation is controlled by glutamate uptake. Furthermore, glutamate transporters control temporal interactions between transmitter transients originating from the same axon. Thus, cooperative interactions between excitatory synapses are modulated in space and time by glutamate uptake.

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Acknowledgements

We thank K. Shimamoto for the gift of TBOA, B. Gähwiler for the sharing of slice cultures and comments on the manuscript, C. Gee, U. Gerber and C. Heuss for comments on the manuscript, and R. Dürr, L. Heeb, H. Kasper and L. Rietschin for technical assistance. Supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (631-057982.99).

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Affiliations

  1. Brain Research Institute, University of Zurich, Winterthurerstr. 190, 8057 Zurich, Switzerland

    • Nina Arnth-Jensen
    •  & Massimo Scanziani
  2. Neurology Department, Geneva University Hospital, 1211 Geneva, Switzerland

    • Denis Jabaudon

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Massimo Scanziani.

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DOI

https://doi.org/10.1038/nn825

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