Dopamine-dependent synaptic plasticity in striatum during in vivo development

Ka Choi Tang, Malcolm J. Low, David K. Grandy, David M. Lovinger

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    144 Scopus citations


    The neurotransmitters dopamine (DA) and glutamate in the striatum play key roles in movement and cognition, and they are implicated in disorders of the basal ganglia such as Parkinson's disease. Excitatory synapses in striatum undergo a form of developmental plasticity characterized by a decrease in glutamate release probability. Here we demonstrate that this form of synaptic plasticity is DA and DA D2 receptor dependent. Analysis of spontaneous synaptic responses indicates that a presynaptic mechanism involving inhibition of neurotransmitter release underlies the developmental plasticity. We suggest that a major role of DA in the striatum is to initiate mechanisms that regulate the efficacy of excitatory striatal synapses, producing a decrease in glutamate release.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1255-1260
    Number of pages6
    JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
    Issue number3
    StatePublished - Jan 30 2001

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General


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