A comparison of the muscarinic response and morphological properties of identified cells in the guinea-pig olfactory cortex in vitro.

Libri, V., Constanti, A., Calaminici, M. and Nisticó, G. (1994) A comparison of the muscarinic response and morphological properties of identified cells in the guinea-pig olfactory cortex in vitro. Neuroscience, 59 (2). pp. 331-347. 10.1016/0306-4522(94)90600-9.

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DOI: 10.1016/0306-4522(94)90600-9


The electrophysiological and morphological characteristics of neurons in the guinea-pig olfactory cortex brain slice were investigated using a combined intracellular recording and neurobiotin-dye filling technique, in an attempt to show whether a clear relation existed between cell morphology and excitatory muscarinic response profile. Out of 46 sampled neurons, 25 (termed type 1), responded to bath-application of the muscarinic agonist oxotremorine-M (10 microM, 2-3 min) with a strong and persistent excitation coupled with the appearance of a slow depolarizing afterpotential (10-20 mV amplitude) following a large depolarizing stimulus. These neurons were identified as deep pyramidal cells located in cortical layer III, with characteristic pyramidal/ovoid shaped cell bodies, prominent apical dendrites with branches extending to the surface, and extensive basal dendritic trees. The cells showed a regular spiking pattern in response to injected depolarizing current, with no evidence of bursting behaviour. Nine cells (termed type 2), were strongly excited by oxotremorine-M, but only generated a weak depolarizing afterpotential (< 5 mV) following stimulation. These neurons (located in layer III or at layer II-III border) had a variable, non-pyramidal morphology with either a fusiform/tripolar, stellate/multipolar or bipolar/bi-tufted appearance, respectively. Apart from a more prominent post-spike afterhyperpolarization observed in some type 2 cells, their resting membrane properties and firing patterns were indistinguishable from those of type 1 responding cells. Twelve cells (termed type 3) showed little or no excitatory response to oxotremorine-M, and never generated a post-stimulus slow afterdepolarization. These cells (within compact layer II) had the morphological features of superficial pyramidal cells, typified by their short apical trunks and well-developed apical dendritic trees. They could be distinguished electrophysiologically by their ability to show spike fractionation during injection of large depolarizing current pulses. The morphology and laminar position of neurobiotin-filled cells was also compared with those of cells stained by the Golgi-Cox method. Some factors that may have contributed to the observed differences in muscarinic response profile are discussed. It is proposed that the selective muscarinic induction of the slow depolarizing afterpotential phenomenon in deep pyramidal cells may be important in olfactory cortical learning and memory processes.

Item Type:Article
Departments, units and centres:Department of Pharmacology > Department of Pharmacology
ID Code:2525
Journal or Publication Title:Neuroscience
Deposited By:Library Staff
Deposited On:25 Nov 2011 09:40
Last Modified:25 Nov 2011 09:40

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