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Plasticity mechanisms of genetically distinct Purkinje cells

Research group De Zeeuw
Publication year 2024
Published in BioEssays
Authors Stijn Voerman, Robin Broersen, Sigrid M A Swagemakers, Chris I De Zeeuw, Peter J van der Spek

Despite its uniform appearance, the cerebellar cortex is highly heterogeneous in terms of structure, genetics and physiology. Purkinje cells (PCs), the principal and sole output neurons of the cerebellar cortex, can be categorized into multiple populations that differentially express molecular markers and display distinctive physiological features. Such features include action potential rate, but also their propensity for synaptic and intrinsic plasticity. However, the precise molecular and genetic factors that correlate with the differential physiological properties of PCs remain elusive. In this article, we provide a detailed overview of the cellular mechanisms that regulate PC activity and plasticity. We further perform a pathway analysis to highlight how molecular characteristics of specific PC populations may influence their physiology and plasticity mechanisms.

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