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Xulong Wang, Giordano Lippi, David M. Carlson and Darwin K. Berg Activation of α7-containing nicotinic receptors on astrocytes triggers AMPA receptor recruitment to glutamatergic synapses Journal of Neurochemistry 127

Version of Record online: 30 SEP 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/jnc.12436

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We find that activation of nicotinic receptors on astrocytes releases a component that specifically recruits AMPA receptors to glutamatergic synapses. The recruitment appears to occur preferentially at what may be ‘silent synapses’, that is, synapses that have all the components required for glutamatergic transmission (including NMDA receptors) but lack sufficient AMPA receptors to generate a response. The results are unexpected and open up new possibilities for mechanisms underlying network formation and synaptic plasticity.

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