B02 The impact of dendritic calcium handling on interneuron function within hippocampal circuits
Calcium (Ca2+) is an important intracellular signaling molecule involved in various cellular processes from gene regulation to the induction of synaptic plasticity and prominent changes in cellular excitability. This important ion is highly regulated in concentration and localization within neurons in order to direct its signaling toward appropriate outcomes. Because of its importance for signal integration, Ca2+ signaling has been well described in the excitatory principal neurons of the brain. In contrast, the role and regulation of Ca2+ in inhibitory interneurons has been minimally examined. This project combines whole-cell patch clamp with single and multi-photon laser scanning microscopy and synaptic stimulation to understand how Ca2+ signals regulate interneuron function and their subsequent role in network activity. We expect that the results of this project will reveal the importance of Ca2+ in dendritic signaling in interneurons and will also be highly relevant to the study of neurological diseases.