Afferent modulation of dopamine neuron firing patterns

Curr Opin Neurobiol. 1999 Dec;9(6):690-7. doi: 10.1016/s0959-4388(99)00040-9.


In recent studies examining the modulation of dopamine (DA) cell firing patterns, particular emphasis has been placed on excitatory afferents from the prefrontal cortex and the subthalamic nucleus. A number of inconsistencies in recently published reports, however, do not support the contention that tonic activation of NMDA receptors is the sole determinate of DA neuronal firing patterns. The results of work on the basic mechanism of DA firing and the action of apamin suggest that excitatory projections to DA neurons from cholinergic and glutamatergic neurons in the tegmental pedunculopontine nucleus, and/or inhibitory GABAergic projections, are also involved in modulating DA neuron firing behavior.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Afferent Pathways / physiology
  • Animals
  • Dopamine / physiology*
  • Electrophysiology
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Substantia Nigra / cytology
  • Substantia Nigra / physiology
  • Tegmentum Mesencephali / cytology
  • Tegmentum Mesencephali / physiology


  • Dopamine