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Calcium current diversity in physiologically different local interneuron types of the antennal lobe.

Behavioral and physiological studies show that neuronal interactions among the glomeruli in the insect antennal lobe (AL) take place during the processing of odor information. These interactions are mediated by a complex network of inhibitory and excitatory local interneurons (LNs) that restructure the olfactory representation in the AL, thereby regulating the tuning profile of projection neurons. In Periplaneta americana, we characterized two LN types with distinctive physiological properties: (1) type I LNs that generated Na(+)-driven action potentials on odor stimulation and exhibited GABA-like immunoreactivity (GLIR) and (2) type II LNs, in which odor stimulation evoked depolarizations, but no Na(+)-driven action potentials (APs). Type II LNs did not express voltage-dependent transient Na(+) currents and accordingly would not trigger transmitter release by Na(+)-driven APs. Ninety percent of type II LNs did not exhibit GLIR. The distinct intrinsic firing properties were reflected in functional parameters of their voltage-activated Ca(2+) currents (I(Ca)). Consistent with graded synaptic release, we found a shift in the voltage for half-maximal activation of I(Ca) to more hyperpolarized membrane potentials in the type II LNs. These marked physiological differences between the two LN types imply consequences for their computational capacity, synaptic output kinetics, and thus their function in the olfactory circuit.

Pubmed ID: 19158298 RIS Download

Mesh terms: Action Potentials | Analysis of Variance | Animals | Biophysical Phenomena | Cadmium | Calcium | Electric Stimulation | In Vitro Techniques | Interneurons | Lysine | Odorants | Olfactory Bulb | Patch-Clamp Techniques | Periplaneta | Potassium Channel Blockers | Sodium | Sodium Channel Blockers | Tetraethylammonium | Tetrodotoxin | gamma-Aminobutyric Acid