Note to users. If you're seeing this message, it means that your browser cannot find this page's style/presentation instructions -- or possibly that you are using a browser that does not support current Web standards. Find out more about why this message is appearing, and what you can do to make your experience of our site the best it can be.


Sci. STKE, 19 July 2005
Vol. 2005, Issue 293, p. tw268
[DOI: 10.1126/stke.2932005tw268]

EDITORS' CHOICE

NEUROSCIENCE The Virtual Synapse

In a multiparameter, multidimensional system, building a quantitative and detailed model can be a helpful adjunct to experimental studies in exploring parameter space. Coggan et al. (see the Perspective by Lucic and Baumeister) have taken a step toward describing dynamic events at a neuronal synapse by reconstructing the architecture of the pre- and postsynaptic membranes and underlying cytoplasmic vesicles and incorporating kinetic measurements of neurotransmitter receptor properties, as well as other physical and chemical parameters of neurotransmitters. At this simulated synapse, the known electrophysiology of transmitter release could not be explained by vesicle fusion only at the active zone, the classical region of membrane apposition between the pre- and postsynaptic neurons. Instead, the modeled electrophysiology fits better to observations if ectopic release by vesicle fusion outside active zones is included.

J. S. Coggan, T. M. Bartol, E. Esquenazi, J. R. Stiles, S. Lamont, M. E. Martone, D. K. Berg, M. H. Ellisman, T. J. Sejnowski, Evidence for ectopic neurotransmission at a neuronal synapse. Science 309, 446-451 (2005). [Abstract] [Full Text]

V. Lucic, W. Baumeister, Monte Carlo places strong odds on ectopic release. Science 309, 387-388 (2005). [Summary] [Full Text]

Citation: The Virtual Synapse. Sci. STKE 2005, tw268 (2005).


To Advertise     Find Products


Science Signaling. ISSN 1937-9145 (online), 1945-0877 (print). Pre-2008: Science's STKE. ISSN 1525-8882