Ne

1 Change in

^ Local excitability

FIGURE 12 The dendritic tree and regulation of action potential propagation. (A) This photograph is of pyramidal neuron dendrites and a single axon fiber passing through them. Photo by Michael Hausser and Beverly Clark. (B) Two ways to regulate the likelihood of a back-propagating action potential reaching a given distal synapse are shown. One possibility is neurotransmitter (e.g., NE) regulation of local potassium channels determining the extent of action potential propagation (1). A second possibility is postsynaptic EPSPs, which inactivate potassium channels (see Figure 8B, part b), arriving in a dendritic region and allowing passage of an action potential through that region (2).

FIGURE 12 The dendritic tree and regulation of action potential propagation. (A) This photograph is of pyramidal neuron dendrites and a single axon fiber passing through them. Photo by Michael Hausser and Beverly Clark. (B) Two ways to regulate the likelihood of a back-propagating action potential reaching a given distal synapse are shown. One possibility is neurotransmitter (e.g., NE) regulation of local potassium channels determining the extent of action potential propagation (1). A second possibility is postsynaptic EPSPs, which inactivate potassium channels (see Figure 8B, part b), arriving in a dendritic region and allowing passage of an action potential through that region (2).

for sophisticated information processing through an interplay of action potential propagation, glutamate release, and neuromodulation (see reference 10). All these things become possible because the dendritic membrane in which the NMDA receptors reside is not passive but contains voltage-dependent ion channels. This means that controlling the postsynaptic membrane biophysical properties can be a critical determinant for regulating the triggering of synaptic change; we will return to this issue in Chapter 6.

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