PMID: 8120587Dec 1, 1993

Large, deep layer pyramid-pyramid single axon EPSPs in slices of rat motor cortex display paired pulse and frequency-dependent depression, mediated presynaptically and self-facilitation, mediated postsynaptically

Journal of Neurophysiology
Alex M ThomsonD C West


1. In slices of rat sensorimotor cortex, dual intracellular recordings were obtained from 1,952 pairs of deep layer pyramidal neurons. Where action potentials in one neurone elicited excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs, n = 56) in the other, responses to different presynaptic firing rates and patterns and at different postsynaptic membrane potentials were recorded and on some occasions both neurons were filled with biocytin. 2. Slices were fixed, sectioned again at 60 microns, and incubated with Avidin horseradish peroxidase (HRP), which was then visualized using the 3,3'-diaminobenzidine tetrahydrochloride (DAB) method. All neurones reported here that were identified histologically were pyramidal cells with their somata in the deep layers (V and VI). 3. One in 70 of the tests performed revealed a synaptic connection, 25 of which were studied in detail. Mean EPSP amplitude was 1.67 +/- 1.66 (SD) mV, with some single sweep events as large as 9 mV. For some of the smaller EPSPs the amplitude distributions contained a clear peak around 0 mV, the coefficient of variation (CV) was large, and paired pulse facilitation was apparent. EPSPs with large average amplitudes displayed no apparent failures of transmission, EPSP amplitud...Continue Reading


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