Glutamatergic and purinergic receptor-mediated calcium transients in bergmann glial cells

Richard Piet, Craig E. Jahr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


Astrocytes respond to neuronal activity with [Ca2+]i increases after activation of specific receptors. Bergmann glial cells (BGs), astrocytes of the cerebellar molecular layer (ML), express various receptors that can mobilize internal Ca2+. BGs also express Ca2+ permeable AMPA receptors that may be important for maintaining the extensive coverage of Purkinje cell (PC) excitatory synapses by BG processes. Here, we examined Ca2+ signals in single BGs evoked by synaptic activity in cerebellar slices. Short bursts of high-frequency stimulation of the ML elicited Ca2+ transients composed of a small-amplitude fast rising phase, followed by a larger and slower rising phase. The first phase resulted from Ca2+ influx through AMPA receptors, whereas the second phase required release of Ca2+ from internal stores initiated by P2 purinergic receptor activation. We found that such Ca2+ responses could be evoked by direct activation of neurons releasing ATP onto BGs or after activation of metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 on these neurons. Moreover, examination of BG and PC responses to various synaptic stimulation protocols suggested that ML interneurons are likely the cellular source of ATP.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4027-4035
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number15
StatePublished - Apr 11 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • AMPA receptors
  • ATP
  • Cerebellum
  • Interneuron
  • Neuron- glia interaction
  • Synaptic transmission
  • mGluR1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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