• astrocyte;
  • electrophysiology;
  • glia;
  • oligodendrocyte;
  • rat


We have analysed the ion channel complement of the oligodendrocyte-type 2 astrocyte (O-2A) glial cell progenitor obtained from the commonly studied neonatal rat mixed brain preparation. Ionic currents, in O-2A progenitors identified on both morphological and immunological grounds, were recorded using the whole-cell variant of the patch-clamp technique. The cells had an average resting membrane potential close to -50 mV and fired single action potentials in response to suprathreshold current injections. Using voltage-clamp methods we were able to identify and characterize a voltage-activated TTX-sensitive Na+ current, two classes of voltage-activated outward K+ currents, an inactivating inwardly rectifying K+ current, a voltage-activated Cl- current and at least three classes of Ca2+ current.