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De Schutter, Erik; Bower, James M. (1994)
Publisher: National Academy of Sciences
Types: Article
Subjects: Research Article
Identifiers:pmc:PMC43863
Cerebellar Purkinje cell responses to granule cell synaptic inputs were examined with a computer model including active dendritic conductances. Dendritic P-type Ca^2+ channels amplified postsynaptic responses when the model was firing at a physiological rate. Small synchronous excitatory inputs applied distally on the large dendritic tree resulted in somatic responses of similar size to those generated by more proximal inputs. In contrast, in a passive model the somatic postsynaptic potentials to distal inputs were 76% smaller. The model predicts that the somatic firing response of Purkinje cells is relatively insensitive to the exact dendritic location of synaptic inputs. We describe a mechanism of Ca^2+-mediated synaptic amplification, based on the subspiking threshold recruitment of P-type Ca^2+ channels in the dendritic branches surrounding the input site.
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