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. 1996 Dec;17(6):1057-64.
doi: 10.1016/s0896-6273(00)80239-1.

Neurotrophin Regulation of Cortical Dendritic Growth Requires Activity

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Neurotrophin Regulation of Cortical Dendritic Growth Requires Activity

A K McAllister et al. Neuron. .
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Neurotrophins have been proposed to mediate several forms of activity-dependent competition in the central nervous system. A key element of such hypotheses is that neurotrophins act preferentially on active neurons; however, little direct evidence supports this postulate. We therefore examined, in ferret cortical brain slices, the interactions between activity and neurotrophins in regulating dendritic growth of layer 4 pyramidal neurons. Inhibition of spontaneous electrical activity, synaptic transmission, or L-type calcium channels each prevented the otherwise dramatic increase in dendritic arborizations elicited by brain-derived neurotrophic factor. In developing cortex, this requirement for conjoint neurotrophin signaling and activity provides a mechanism for selectively enhancing the growth and connectivity of active neurons.

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