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Neuronal Calcium Sensor 1 and Activity-Dependent Facilitation of P/Q-Type Calcium Currents at Presynaptic Nerve Terminals

Science  22 Mar 2002:
Vol. 295, Issue 5563, pp. 2276-2279
DOI: 10.1126/science.1068278

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Abstract

P/Q-type presynaptic calcium currents (I pCa) undergo activity-dependent facilitation during repetitive activation at the calyx of the Held synapse. We investigated whether neuronal calcium sensor 1 (NCS-1) may underlie this phenomenon. Direct loading of NCS-1 into the nerve terminal mimicked activity-dependent I pCafacilitation by accelerating the activation time ofI pCa in a Ca2+-dependent manner. A presynaptically loaded carboxyl-terminal peptide of NCS-1 abolishedI pCa facilitation. These results suggest that residual Ca2+ activates endogenous NCS-1, thereby facilitating I pCa. Because both P/Q-type Ca2+ channels and NCS-1 are widely expressed in mammalian nerve terminals, NCS-1 may contribute to the activity-dependent synaptic facilitation at many synapses.

  • * These authors contributed equally to this work.

  • To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: tujimoto-tky{at}umin.ac.jp

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