PLoS Biol. 2019 Sep 19;17(9)

TRPC channels regulate Ca2+-signaling and short-term plasticity of fast glutamatergic synapses.

Schwarz Y, Oleinikov K, Schindeldecker B, Wyatt A, Weißgerber P, Flockerzi V, Boehm U, Freichel M, Bruns D.

Transient receptor potential (TRP) proteins form Ca2+-permeable, nonselective cation channels, but their role in neuronal Ca2+ homeostasis is elusive. In the present paper, we show that TRPC channels potently regulate synaptic plasticity by changing the presynaptic Ca2+-homeostasis of hippocampal neurons. Specifically, loss of TRPC1/C4/C5 channels decreases basal-evoked secretion, decreases the pool size of readily releasable vesicles, and accelerates synaptic depression during high-frequency stimulation (HFS). In contrast, primary TRPC5 channel-expressing neurons, identified by a novel TRPC5-τ-green fluorescent protein (τGFP) knockin mouse line, show strong short-term enhancement (STE) of synaptic signaling during HFS, indicating a key role of TRPC5 in short-term plasticity. Lentiviral expression of either TRPC1 or TRPC5 turns classic synaptic depression of wild-type neurons into STE, demonstrating that TRPCs are instrumental in regulating synaptic plasticity. Presynaptic Ca2+ imaging shows that TRPC activity strongly boosts synaptic Ca2+ dynamics, showing that TRPC channels provide an additional presynaptic Ca2+ entry pathway, which efficiently regulates synaptic strength and plasticity.

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