Control of Ca2+ influx and calmodulin activation by SK-channels in dendritic spines (dataset)
PLoS Computational Biology
University of Exeter
The key trigger for Hebbian synaptic plasticity is influx of Ca2+ into postsynaptic dendritic spines. The magnitude of [Ca2+] increase caused by NMDA-receptor (NMDAR) and voltage-gated Ca2+ -channel (VGCC) activation is thought to determine both the amplitude and direction of synaptic plasticity by differential activation of Ca2+ -sensitive enzymes such as calmodulin. Ca2+ influx is negatively regulated by Ca2+ -activated K+ channels (SK-channels) which are in turn inhibited by neuromodulators such as acetylcholine. However, the precise mechanisms by which SK-channels control the induction of synaptic plasticity remain unclear. Using a 3-dimensional model of Ca2+ and calmodulin dynamics within an idealised, but biophysically-plausible, dendritic spine, we show that SK-channels regulate calmodulin activation specifically during neuron-firing patterns associated with induction of spike timing-dependent plasticity. SK-channel activation and the subsequent reduction in Ca2+ influx through NMDARs and L-type VGCCs results in an order of magnitude decrease in calmodulin (CaM) activation, providing a mechanism for the effective gating of synaptic plasticity induction. This provides a common mechanism for the regulation of synaptic plasticity by neuromodulators.
A 3-dimensional model of Ca2+ and calmodulin dynamics within an idealised, but biophysically-plausible, dendritic spine, demonstrates that SK-channels regulate calmodulin activation specifically during neurone firing patterns associated with induction of spike timing-dependent plasticity.
The journal article associated with this dataset is available at: http://hdl.handle.net/10871/21745.
PLoS Computational Biology, 2016, Vol. 12(5): e1004949