Electrical behaviour of dendritic spines as revealed by voltage imaging

MA Popovic, N Carnevale, B Rozsa & D Zecevic

Nature Communications 2015

Popovic et al, NatCommun (2015)

Marko A. Popovic et al showed new results about electrical behavior of dendritic spines in Nature Communications. The goal of their research was to generate and measure the spread of input signals from the head of an individual spine to the dendrite and in parallel to reveal the role and influence of the neck of the spine. To activate synapses they applied glutamate iontophoresis and two-photon glutamate uncaging. The uncaging experiments were performed with the commonly used MNI glutamate and a new compound, DNI-Glu which is around 7 times more efficient than the former, even in lower concentrations. The evoked electrical signals (EPSPs) were monitored by electrochromic voltage-sensitive dye simultaneously in the spine and the dendrite. The study provides direct evidence that the resistance of the spine neck is too low to electrically isolate synapses on spine heads, so the synapses of the head electrically behave as if they were located directly on the dendrites.

Popovic et al, NatCommun (2015)

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