The Neuron Imaging & Calcium Channels Team
The origin of calcium signals associated with cerebellar learning
Learning processes in the nervous system are produced by changes of the connections among neurons that form neuronal networks. To associate two inputs that normally produce two independent calcium signals, the concomitant occurrence of them can trigger a calcium signal that is larger than the summation of the two inputs and that is capable of changing one of the two inputs. In the cerebellar Purkinje neuron, a mechanism of this type allows learning of motor patterns underlying movement coordination. In the current issue of the Journal of Neuroscience, we unravel the principal mechanisms underlying this supralinear calcium signal in Purkinje neurons. In this system, an important component of the calcium signal is mediated by T-type calcium channels activated by the first broad input, but the same signal is amplified locally when the second input is activated. This channel operates only when the Purkinje neuron is not firing, suggesting that this transient state of the neuron is fundamental for learning of new information. This finding can potentially change our understanding of cerebellar learning that is perhaps more sophisticated than we have thought so far.
Ait Ouares K, Canepari M. J Neurosci 40 : 1795-1809, 2020.
Candidates wishing to work with us and eligible for EU Marie Curie fellowships, French govements studentships and/or other types of individual fundings are encoraged to contact us any time of the year.
The origin of physiological local mGluR1 supralinear Ca2+ signals in cerebellar Purkinje neurons: our paper is now published in the Journal of Neuroscience:
Congratulations Luiza, you are Doctor! Luiza Filipis discussed her thesis entitled "Optical and computational study of the function of neuronal ion channels" and she obtained her PhD.
Welcome Laila! Laila Blömer started her PhD and she will work on photoactivable toxins and applications to investigate ion channels in layer-5 neocortical pyramidal neurons.
The parallel dynamics of multiple ion channels revealed by combined imaging techniques and computational methods: our first paper is now published in the Journal of Neuroscience: