Precisely Localized LTD in the Neocortex Revealed by Infrared-Guided Laser Stimulation

Science  01 Oct 1999:
Vol. 286, Issue 5437, pp. 110-113
DOI: 10.1126/science.286.5437.110

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In a direct approach to elucidate the origin of long-term depression (LTD), glutamate was applied onto dendrites of neurons in rat neocortical slices. An infrared-guided laser stimulation was used to release glutamate from caged glutamate in the focal spot of an ultraviolet laser. A burst of light flashes caused an LTD-like depression of glutamate receptor responses, which was highly confined to the region of “tetanic” stimulation (<10 micrometers). A similar depression of glutamate receptor responses was observed during LTD of synaptic transmission. A spatially highly specific postsynaptic mechanism can account for the LTD induced by glutamate release.

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