Electrophysiological studies were carried out on the presynaptic inhibitory action of the group II metabotropic glutamate (mGlu) receptor agonists (+)-2-aminobicyclo[3.1.0]hexane-2-6-dicarboxylic acid (LY354740) and (2S,1'R,2'R,3'R)-2-(2',3'-dicarboxycyclopropyl)glycine (DCG-IV) in three paths of the rat hippocampus, the medial and lateral perforant path to the dentate gyrus, and the Schaffer collateral/commissural path to CA1. LY354740 caused a dose-dependent reversible inhibition of the field excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) in the medial and lateral perforant paths, with an EC50 of 115 +/- 16 nM and 230 +/- 58 nM, respectively. Maximal inhibition by LY354740 was much greater in the medial path (about 80%) than in the lateral path (about 50%). No inhibition was observed in CA1. A presynaptic inhibition was confirmed by LY354740 inducing dose-dependent changes in paired-pulse depression/facilitation. DCG-IV had a similar action to LY354740, but with a lower potency.