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GABA-enhanced collective behavior in neuronal axons underlies persistent gamma-frequency oscillations

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Mark Cunningham, Dr Fiona LeBeau, Professor Miles Whittington


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Gamma (30–80 Hz) oscillations occur in mammalian electroencephalogram in a manner that indicates cognitive relevance. In vitro models of gamma oscillations demonstrate two forms of oscillation: one occurring transiently and driven by discrete afferent input and the second occurring persistently in response to activation of excitatory metabotropic receptors. The mechanism underlying persistent gamma oscillations has been suggested to involve gap-junctional communication between axons of principal neurons, but the precise relationship between this neuronal activity and the gamma oscillation has remained elusive. Here we demonstrate that gamma oscillations coexist with high-frequency oscillations (>90 Hz). High-frequency oscillations can be generated in the axonal plexus even when it is physically isolated from pyramidal cell bodies. They were enhanced in networks by nonsomatic γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor activation, were modulated by perisomatic GABAA receptor-mediated synaptic input to principal cells, and provided the phasic input to interneurons required to generate persistent gamma-frequency oscillations. The data suggest that high-frequency oscillations occurred as a consequence of random activity within the axonal plexus. Interneurons provide a mechanism by which this random activity is both amplified and organized into a coherent network rhythm.

Publication metadata

Author(s): LeBeau FE; Whittington MA; Cunningham MO; Traub RD; Gloveli T; Bibbig A; Buhl EH

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

Year: 2003

Volume: 100

Issue: 19

Pages: 11047-11052

ISSN (print): 0027-8424

ISSN (electronic): 1091-6490

Publisher: National Academy of Sciences


DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1934854100


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