Thermally active TRPV1 tonically drives central spontaneous glutamate release

Kiyomitsu Shoudai, James H. Peters, Stuart J. McDougall, Jessica A. Fawley, Michael C. Andresen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

76 Scopus citations

Abstract

Central synapses spontaneously release neurotransmitter at low rates. In the brainstem, cranial visceral afferent terminals in caudal solitary tract nucleus (NTS) display pronounced, activity-dependent, asynchronous release of glutamate and this extra release depends on TRPV1 receptors (TRPV1+). Asynchronous release is absent for afferents lacking TRPV1 (TRPV1-) and resting EPSC frequency was greater inTRPV1+. Here, we studied this basal activity difference by assessing thermal sensitivity of spontaneous and miniature synaptic events in TRPV1+ and TRPV1- second-order NTS neurons. The spontaneous EPSC rate decreased when temperature was decreased, increased steeply between 30 and 42° C only in TRPV1+ neurons, and was calcium-dependent. TRPV1-specific antagonist SB366791, but not TTX, strongly attenuated thermal responses. Temperature changes failed to alter EPSC frequency in TRPV1- neurons. EPSC amplitudes and decay kinetics changed little with temperature. IPSCs in these second-order NTS neurons were unaltered by temperature. Such results suggest that activated, presynaptic TRPV1+ receptors trigger continuous resting release of glutamate vesicles at physiological temperatures only in capsaicin-responsive terminals. In mechanically isolated individual neurons harvested from medial NTS, increases in temperature increased the rate of glutamate release only in TRPV1+ neurons, whereas IPSC rates were unaffected. Cadmium failed to block thermal increases in glutamate release, suggesting that calcium entry through TRPV1 channels may trigger glutamate release independently of voltage-activated calcium channels. Together, our findings indicate a new form of afferent signaling in which TRPV1 channels within central terminals of peripheral afferents tonically generate glutamate release in NTS at 37°C in the absence of afferent action potentials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14470-14475
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Volume30
Issue number43
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 27 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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