Quantal analysis of presynaptic inhibition, low [Ca2+]0, and high pressure interactions at crustacean excitatory synapses

Hava Golan, Homer J. Moore, Yoram Grossman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


The cellular mechanisms underlying the effects of high pressure, GABAergic presynaptic inhibition, and low [Ca2+]0 on glutamatergic excitatory synaptic transmission were studied in the opener muscle of the lobster walking leg. Excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were recorded with or without prior stimulation of the inhibitor using a loose macropatch clamp technique at atmospheric pressure and at 6.9 MPA helium pressure. High pressure reduced the mean EPSC amplitude and variance, decreased the quantal content (m), but did not affect the quantum current (q). Pressure shifted the median of the amplitude histogram to the left by 1–2 q. Under normal pressure conditions, presynaptic inhibition and low [Ca 2+]0 induced similar effects. However, quantal analysis using a binomial frequency distribution model revealed that high pressure and low [Ca 2+]0 diminished n (available active zones) and slightly increased p (probability of release), but presynaptic inhibition reduced p and slightly increased n. At high pressure, presynaptic inhibition was reduced, at which time the major contributor to the inhibitory process appeared to be reduction in n and not p. The similarity of the alterations in quantal parameters of release at high pressure, low [Ca 2+]0, and in some conditions of presynaptic inhibition is consistent with the hypothesis that pressure reduces Ca2+ inflow into the presynaptic nerve terminals to affect the Ca2+‐dependent quantal release parameters n and p. © 1994 Wiley‐Liss, Inc.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)328-336
Number of pages9
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1994


  • Binomial distribution
  • GABAergic transmission
  • Glutamate release
  • Lobster
  • Neuromuscular junction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


Dive into the research topics of 'Quantal analysis of presynaptic inhibition, low [Ca2+]0, and high pressure interactions at crustacean excitatory synapses'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this