HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Scientists reveal details of brain cell communication: implications for learning & memory

lectrical stimulation and allow calcium to flow into dendritic spines. Calcium, in turn, triggers biochemical events in the spine which modify synaptic strength and thereby encode memories.

In their study, Sabatini and Svoboda could detect if single calcium channels opened or, by chance, remained closed following stimulation. Measuring the probability of channel opening, "like tossing a coin, where heads is open and tails is closed," says Svoboda, enabled him and Sabatini to determine the number of calcium channels per spine. The scientists discovered that depending on their size, spines contain from one to twenty, and typically three, calcium channels.

"Visually examining calcium fluctuations in a single dendritic spine in the brain as we have done is akin to examining the wrinkles on a raisin sitting on the 50 yard line of a football stadium from the Goodyear blimp," says Sabatini.

But nothing is that simple in the brain. Which type of channel is causing these changes in calcium? There are at least six known varieties of calcium channels that could be present in spines, each having different properties. Using chemical probes, Sabatini and Svoboda were able to demonstrate that one specific type of channel (the R type) is solely responsible for the influx of calcium that they observed. "We are looking at the behavior of single calcium channels in their natural environment, the brain." said Sabatini.

"The local influx of calcium we have observed in spines is a fundamental measure of the information carried in one particular brain neuron and how it is processed locally. The information encoded in the messages passed between neurons is simple," says Sabatini. "It's not unlike computer programming code where a single command can be either one for a positive response or zero for a negative response." When an action potential causes a calcium channel to open, that's a one, when it fails to open that's a zero.

Scientists beli
'"/>

Contact: Michael Stebbins
stebbins@cshl.org
516-367-8881
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
28-Nov-2000


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Scientists to prototype cyberinfrastructure for research and education access to ocean observatories
2. Scientists sequence genome of kind of organism central to biospheres carbon cycle
3. Scientists find nanowires capable of detecting individual viruses
4. Scientists discover potential new way to control drug-resistant bacteria
5. Scientists explore genome of methane-breathing microbe
6. Scientists decipher genetic code of biothreat pathogen
7. Stuck on you: Scientists lay bare secrets of bacterial attachment proteins
8. Scientists discover proteins involved in spread of HIV-1 infection
9. Scientists fear new Ebola outbreak may explain sudden gorilla disappearance
10. Scientists reinvent DNA as template to produce organic molecules
11. Scientists visualise cellular handmaiden that restores shape to proteins

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:2/9/2016)... Vigilant Solutions announces today that an agency used its Vigilant ... in a difficult homicide case. The agency then used Vigilant,s ... vehicle. Due to the ongoing investigation, the agency name and ... agency,s request. --> --> ... deceased at an intersection here in the City. He had ...
(Date:2/4/2016)... -- The field of Human Microbiome research and ... hubs of the biotechnology industry. While the Human ... human microbiota, have garnered a lot of attention ... has literally exploded in terms of both basic ... on biomedical aspects of research, development, and commercial ...
(Date:2/3/2016)... Calif. , Feb. 3, 2016 Vigilant ... Police Department in Missouri ... license plate reader (LPR) data from Vigilant Solutions. ... hit-and-run case in which the victim was walking out of a convenience ... parking space next to his vehicle, striking his vehicle ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/10/2016)... NY (PRWEB) , ... February 10, 2016 , ... LATHAM, ... packages at the SPIE Photonics West conference in San Francisco’s Moscone Center ... 14 in the same venue. , These latest InGaAs PIN diode standard packages ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... , ... February 10, 2016 , ... ... medicine, has announced a new agreement with Singapore-based Global Stem Cells Network (GSCN) ... the Philippines, Thailand and Singapore in the latest adipose and bone marrow therapies. ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... N.J. , Feb. 9, 2016  Regenicin, ... biotechnology company specializing in the development and commercialization ... of damaged tissues and organs, recently reported the ... the first quarter of 2016. Lonza ... the new 2015 fiscal year in the process ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... ... , ... Tunnell Consulting, Inc. announced that Frédéric Lefebvre has joined the firm ... new accounts and work closely with existing Tunnell clients throughout Europe to ensure their ... clients more than 15 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, a thorough knowledge ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: