Inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate-evoked responses in midbrain dopamine neurons.

H. Morikawa, F. Imani, K. Khodakhah, J. T. Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


Synaptically released glutamate evokes slow IPSPs mediated by metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) in midbrain dopamine neurons. These mGluR IPSPs are caused by release of Ca(2+) from intracellular stores and subsequent activation of small-conductance Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channels (SK channels). To further investigate the intracellular mechanisms involved, the effect of photolyzing intracellular caged inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate (InsP(3)) on membrane conductance and intracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)](i)) was examined in rat midbrain slices. Photolytic release of InsP(3) elicited a transient outward current and a sharp rise in [Ca(2+)](i) that lasted for approximately 5 sec. Apamin, a blocker of SK channels, abolished the InsP(3)-induced outward current without affecting the rise in [Ca(2+)](i). Depleting intracellular Ca(2+) stores with cyclopiazonic acid completely blocked both the outward current and the Ca(2+) transient elicited by InsP(3). InsP(3)-evoked Ca(2+) mobilization was not affected by blockade of ryanodine receptors with ruthenium red, whereas depleting ryanodine-sensitive Ca(2+) stores with ryanodine almost eliminated InsP(3)-induced Ca(2+) release. Increasing the size of intracellular Ca(2+) stores by means of prolonged depolarization added a late component to the outward current and a slow component to the rising phase of [Ca(2+)](i). These effects of depolarization were blocked by ruthenium red. These results show that InsP(3) activates SK channels by releasing Ca(2+) from InsP(3)-sensitive stores that also contain ryanodine receptors. Increasing intracellular Ca(2+) stores boosts InsP(3)-evoked responses by invoking Ca(2+)-induced Ca(2+) release through ryanodine receptors. This intracellular signaling pathway may play a significant role in regulating the excitability of midbrain dopamine neurons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)RC103
JournalThe Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience
Issue number20
StatePublished - Oct 15 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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