DAG-sensitive and Ca2+ permeable TRPC6 channels are expressed in dentate granule cells and interneurons in the hippocampal formation



Members of the transient receptor potential (TRP) cation channel family play important roles in several neuronal functions. To understand the precise role of these channels in information processing, their presence on neuronal elements must be revealed. In this study, we investigated the localization of TRPC6 channels in the adult hippocampal formation. Immunostainings with a specific antibody, which was validated in Trpc6 knockout mice, showed that in the dentate gyrus, TRPC6 channels are strongly expressed in granule cells. Immunogold staining revealing the subcellular localization of TRPC6 channels clarified that these proteins were predominantly present on the membrane surface of the dendritic shafts of dentate granule cells, and also in their axons, often associated with intracellular membrane cisternae. In addition, TRPC6 channels could be observed in the dendrites of some interneurons. Double immunofluorescent staining showed that TRPC6 channels were present in the dendrites of hilar interneurons and hippocampal interneurons with horizontal dendrites in the stratum oriens expressing mGlu1a receptors, whereas parvalbumin immunoreactivity was revealed in TRPC6-expressing dendrites with radial appearance in the stratum radiatum. Electron microscopy showed that the immunogold particles depicting TRPC6 channels were located on the surface membranes of the interneuron dendrites. Our results suggest that TRPC6 channels are in a key position to alter the information entry into the trisynaptic loop of the hippocampal formation from the entorhinal cortex, and to control the function of both feed-forward and feed-back inhibitory circuits in this brain region. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.