Synaptic distributions of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and α-amino-3- hydroxy-5-methylisoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor subunits, NMDAR1 and GluR2, respectively, were examined by electron microscopy with the high spatial resolution of postembedding immunogold localization. We provide direct evidence for colocalization at individual axodendritic asymmetric synapses within the CA1 subfield of rat hippocampus. AMPA/NMDA receptor colocalization was found both in γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic dendrites and non-GABAergic dendritic shafts, as well as dendritic spines. Some asymmetric synapses were found to contain only NMDAR1 or GluR2; however, most immunopositive synapses contained both subunits. Many NMDAR1 and/or GluR2 immunopositive profiles received GABAergic innervation at an adjacent synapse, providing a substrate for GABAergic modulation of both GluR classes. These data suggest that excitatory neuronal transmission in CA1 neurons may generally involve activation of both NMDA and AMPA receptor subunits at a single synapse, however, they also offer ultrastructural evidence for NMDAR1- only synapses that might represent silent synapses.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Journal of Neuroscience Research|
|State||Published - Nov 15 1998|
- Electron microscopy
- Excitatory amino acids
ASJC Scopus subject areas