Cortical control of chandelier cells in neural codes

Front Cell Neurosci. 2022 Oct 10;16:992409. doi: 10.3389/fncel.2022.992409. eCollection 2022.


Various cortical functions arise from the dynamic interplay of excitation and inhibition. GABAergic interneurons that mediate synaptic inhibition display significant diversity in cell morphology, electrophysiology, plasticity rule, and connectivity. These heterogeneous features are thought to underlie their functional diversity. Emerging attention on specific properties of the various interneuron types has emphasized the crucial role of cell-type specific inhibition in cortical neural processing. However, knowledge is still limited on how each interneuron type forms distinct neural circuits and regulates network activity in health and disease. To dissect interneuron heterogeneity at single cell-type precision, we focus on the chandelier cell (ChC), one of the most distinctive GABAergic interneuron types that exclusively innervate the axon initial segments (AIS) of excitatory pyramidal neurons. Here we review the current understanding of the structural and functional properties of ChCs and their implications in behavioral functions, network activity, and psychiatric disorders. These findings provide insights into the distinctive roles of various single-type interneurons in cortical neural coding and the pathophysiology of cortical dysfunction.

Keywords: axo-axonic cell; axon initial segment (AIS) inhibitory synapse; chandelier cells; cortical network; excitatory inhibitory balance; interneurons; schizhophrenia; synaptic plasticity.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review