Structural plasticity of the axon initial segment in rat hippocampal granule cells following high frequency stimulation and LTP induction
Sprache des Titels:
The axon initial segment (AIS) is the site of action potential initiation and important for the integration of synaptic input. Length and localization of the AIS are dynamic, modulated by afferent activity and contribute to the homeostatic control of neuronal excitability. Synaptopodin is a plasticity-related protein expressed by the majority of telencephalic neurons. It is required for the formation of cisternal organelles within the AIS and an excellent marker to identify these enigmatic organelles at the light microscopic level. Here we applied 2 h of high frequency stimulation of the medial perforant path in rats in vivo to induce a strong long-term potentiation of dentate gyrus granule cells. Immunolabeling for ?IV-spectrin and synaptopodin were performed to study structural changes of the AIS and its cisternal organelles. Three-dimensional analysis of the AIS revealed a shortening of the AIS and a corresponding reduction of the number of synaptopodin clusters. These data demonstrate a rapid structural plasticity of the AIS and its cisternal organelles to strong stimulation, indicating a homeostatic response of the entire AIS compartment.