Hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP) is believed to be important for learning and memory. Experimentally, the pairing of precisely timed pre- and postsynaptic spikes within a time window of ∼10 ms can induce timing-dependent LTP (tLTP), but the requirements for induction of tLTP change with development: in young rodents single postsynaptic spikes are sufficient to induce tLTP, whereas postsynaptic burst firing appears to be required in the adult. However, hippocampal neurons in vivo show theta-modulated single spike activities also in older hippocampus. Here we investigated the conditions for single spike pairing to induce tLTP at older CA3-CA1 synapses. We found that the pairing of single pre- and postsynaptic spikes could induce tLTP in older hippocampus when the postsynaptic neuronal membrane was depolarized and the pairing frequency exceeded ∼4 Hz. The spike frequency requirement is postsynaptic, as tLTP could still be induced with presynaptic stimulation at 1 Hz as long as the postsynaptic spike frequency exceeded ∼4 Hz, suggesting that postsynaptic theta-frequency activity is required for the successful induction of tLTP at older CA3-CA1 synapses. The induction of tLTP was blocked by an NMDA receptor antagonist and by the selective mGluR5 blockers, MPEP and MTEP, whereas activation of mGluR1 and mGluR5 by DHPG relieved the postsynaptic spike frequency requirement for tLTP induction. These results suggest that activation of mGluR5 during single-spike pairing at older CA3-CA1 synapses gates NMDA receptor-dependent tLTP.
- Spike timing-dependent plasticity
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience