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Octopaminergic modulation of synaptic transmission between an identified sensory afferent and flight motoneuron in the locust

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Sarah Judge


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The role of the biogenic amine octopamine in modulating cholinergic synaptic transmission between the locust forewing stretch receptor neuron (fSR) and the first basalar motoneuron (BA1) was investigated. The amines 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT, serotonin) and dopamine were also studied. Bath application of octopamine, 5-HT, and dopamine at concentrations of 10-4 M reversibly decreased the amplitude of monosynaptic excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) evoked in BA1 by electrically stimulating the fSR axon. These effects occurred without any detectable change in either input resistance or membrane potential of BA1. The amines also reversibly decreased the amplitude of responses to acetylcholine (ACh) pressure-applied to the soma of BA1. The muscarinic antagonist scopolamine (10-6 M) had no significant effect on the octopamine-induced decrease in ACh responses. These observations suggest that these amines potentially could physiologically depress cholinergic transmission between fSR and BA1, at least in part, by altering nicotinic rather than muscarinic cholinergic receptor function. Although the octopaminergic agonists naphazoline and tolazoline both mimicked the actions of octopamine, the receptor responsible for octopamine-mediated modulation could not be characterized since amine receptor antagonists tested on the preparation had complex actions. Confocal immunocytochemistry revealed intense octopamine immunoreactivity in the anterior lateral association center, thus confirming the presence of octopamine in neuropil regions containing fSR/BA1 synapses and therefore supporting a role for this amine in the modulation of synaptic transmission between the fSR and BA1. 5-HT-immunoreactivity, conversely, was concentrated within the ventral association centers; very little staining was observed in the dorsal neuropil regions in which fSR/BA1 synapses are located. © 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Leitch B, Judge S, Pitman RM

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Comparative Neurology

Year: 2003

Volume: 462

Issue: 1

Pages: 55-70

ISSN (print): 0021-9967

ISSN (electronic): 1096-9861

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


DOI: 10.1002/cne.10698

PubMed id: 12761824


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