Activation of GABAA receptors causes presynaptic and postsynaptic inhibition at synapses between muscle spindle afferents and motoneurons in the spinal cord of bullfrogs.

Article date: 1989/5/1

PubMed ID: 2542477

Journal name: The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience (ISSN: 0270-6474)


The functional role of GABAA receptors in inhibition of synaptic transmission between muscle spindle afferents and spinal motoneurons was studied in the isolated spinal cord of bullfrogs. Extracellular recording from the ventral root showed that activation of GABAA receptors by muscimol (primarily a GABAA receptor agonist) at 50 microM produced a 38% reduction in the amplitude of the excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) evoked by stimulation of triceps muscle sensory afferents and a 66% reduction in the EPSP half-width, suggesting a large increase in the conductance of the motoneuronal membrane. Quantal analysis of unitary triceps EPSPs recorded intracellularly from motoneurons showed that muscimol reduced the quantal content of release (presynaptic inhibition). In addition, muscimol decreased the quantal size (postsynaptic inhibition) when the postsynaptic conductance change was large. Because the effects of muscimol were completely and reversibly blocked by 100 microM bicuculline (a specific GABAA receptor antagonist), both the pre- and the postsynaptic inhibition caused by muscimol were due to activation of GABAA receptors. Activation of GABAA receptors thus causes both pre- and postsynaptic inhibition of synaptic transmission between muscle afferents and spinal cord motoneurons in the frog.

This document is available from: http://directlinks.cc/files/muscimol/2542477.pdf

Author List: Peng Y Y, Frank E

Publication Types: Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

Substances mentioned in the article: Receptors, GABA-A; Muscimol; Bicuculline;

Mesh terms: Animals; Bicuculline/pharmacology; Electrophysiology; Motor Neurons/physiology; Muscimol/pharmacology; Muscle Spindles/cytology; Neural Inhibition; Neurons, Afferent/physiology; Rana catesbeiana; Receptors, GABA-A/physiology; Spinal Cord/cytology; Synapses/physiology;

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