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Astrocytes establish rapid cell-to-cell communication through the release of chemical transmitters. The underlying mechanisms and functional significance of this release are, however, not well understood. Here we identify an astrocytic vesicular compartment that is competent for glutamate exocytosis. Using postembedding immunogold labeling of the rat(More)
Functional properties of astrocytes were investigated with the patch-clamp technique in acute hippocampal brain slices obtained from surgical specimens of patients suffering from pharmaco-resistant temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). In patients with significant neuronal cell loss, i.e. Ammon's horn sclerosis, the glial current patterns resembled properties(More)
Astrocytes in different brain regions display variable functional properties. In the hippocampus, astrocytes predominantly express time- and voltage-independent currents, but the underlying ion channels are not well defined. This ignorance is partly attributable to abundant intercellular coupling of these cells through gap junctions, impeding quantitative(More)
Recent data have suggested the existence of direct signaling pathways between glial cells and neurons. Here we report the coexistence of distinct types of cells expressing astrocyte-specific markers within the hippocampus that display diverse morphological, molecular, and functional profiles. Usage of transgenic mice with GFAP promoter-controlled enhanced(More)
The relative contribution of voltage activated Na+ and K+ currents to the whole cell current pattern of hippocampal glial cells was analyzed and compared during different stages of postnatal maturation. The patch-clamp technique was applied to identified cells in thin brain slices obtained from animals between postnatal day 5 and 35 (p5-35). We focused on a(More)
In the present study, we were interested in a quantitative analysis of voltage-activated channels in a subpopulation of hippocampal glial cells, termed "complex" cells. The patch-clamp technique in the whole-cell mode was applied to identified cells in situ and to glial cells acutely isolated from tissue slices. The outward current was composed of two(More)
To further characterize the recently described gap junction gene connexin 47 (Cx47), we generated Cx47-null mice by replacing the Cx47 coding DNA with an enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) reporter gene, which was thus placed under control of the endogenous Cx47 promoter. Homozygous mutant mice were fertile and showed no obvious morphological or(More)
Recently, we could demonstrate the 'complex' glial cells in mouse hippocampal slices express glutamate receptor changes of the alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA)/kainate subtypes. In the present study, we further characterized this glial receptor. Since voltage-clamp control is imperfect and diffusion barriers hinders the(More)
Neurons in the rat lateral amygdala in situ were classified based upon electrophysiological and molecular parameters, as studied by patch-clamp, single-cell RT-PCR and unsupervised cluster analyses. Projection neurons (class I) were characterized by low firing rates, frequency adaptation and expression of the vesicular glutamate transporter (VGLUT1). Two(More)
Astrocytes and neurons are tightly associated and recent data suggest a direct signaling between neuronal and glial cells in vivo. To further analyze these interactions, the patch-clamp technique was combined with single-cell RT-PCR in acute hippocampal brain slices. Subsequent to functional analysis, the cytoplasm of the same cell was harvested to perform(More)