GABA induced a transient increase in cytosolic free Ca2+ in cerebellar granule cells, which decreased from 3 to 8 days in vitro (DIV). Cytosolic Ca2+ changes induced by glutamate/glycine were comparable at 3 and 7 DIV. The GABA response was ascribed to GABAA-receptor mediated depolarization activating L-type Ca2+ channels since the response was inhibited by bicuculline or nifedipine. GABA-mediated Ca2+ rise at 4 DIV was potentiated by pentobarbital or by the neurosteroid 5β-pregnan-3α-ol-20-one, or by decreasing the extracellular Cl- concentration. Neurons cultured for > 7 DIV showed no rise in intracellular Ca2+ in response to GABA regardless of the Cl- gradient. GABAA receptor-mediated cytosolic Ca2+ rise suggests an important role for the excitatory activity of GABA in developing cerebellar granule neurons.
- Cerebellar granule cells
- GABA receptors