Separate mechanisms of long-term potentiation in two input systems to CA3 pyramidal neurons of rat hippocampal slices as revealed by the whole-cell patch-clamp technique

Neurosci Res. 1991 Nov;12(3):393-402. doi: 10.1016/0168-0102(91)90070-f.


Excitatory synaptic transmission from two input systems to hippocampal CA3 pyramidal neurons was investigated by the whole-cell patch-clamp technique for thin slice preparation, with special reference to long-term potentiation (LTP) in these systems. Excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) evoked by fimbrial stimulation consisted of two components; one was blocked by 6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (CNQX) and the other was persistent at depolarized membrane potentials and blocked by D-2-amino-5-phosphonovalerate (D-AP5). The contribution of the D-AP5-sensitive component to EPSCs evoked by stimulation of mossy fibers was much less than that to fimbrial EPSCs. High-frequency stimulation of afferent fibers, under current-clamp conditions, elicited LTP. Bath application of D-AP5 blocked the induction of LTP in the fimbrial but not in the mossy fiber synapses. Induction of fimbrial LTP was completely blocked by 10 mM BAPTA applied intracellularly. In contrast, mossy fiber LTP was not blocked by 10 mM BAPTA. Furthermore, mossy fiber LTP, but not fimbrial LTP, was elicited by high-frequency stimulation under voltage-clamp (-80 mV) conditions. These results suggest that activation of NMDA receptors, increase in postsynaptic [Ca2+]i, and postsynaptic membrane depolarization are required for the induction of fimbrial but not for mossy fiber LTP.

MeSH terms

  • 2-Amino-5-phosphonovalerate / pharmacology
  • 6-Cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione
  • Animals
  • Dendrites / physiology
  • Egtazic Acid / analogs & derivatives
  • Egtazic Acid / pharmacology
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Evoked Potentials / drug effects
  • Female
  • Hippocampus / cytology*
  • Hippocampus / physiology
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Male
  • Membrane Potentials / physiology
  • Neurons / drug effects*
  • Pyramidal Tracts / cytology*
  • Quinoxalines / pharmacology
  • Rats
  • Receptors, N-Methyl-D-Aspartate / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Receptors, N-Methyl-D-Aspartate / drug effects
  • Synapses / drug effects
  • Tetrodotoxin / pharmacology


  • Quinoxalines
  • Receptors, N-Methyl-D-Aspartate
  • Tetrodotoxin
  • Egtazic Acid
  • 6-Cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione
  • 2-Amino-5-phosphonovalerate
  • 1,2-bis(2-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid