Cortical dendritic activity correlates with spindle-rich oscillations during sleep in rodents
Nat Commun. 2017-09-25; 8(1):
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Nat Commun. 2017 Nov 23;8(1):1838.
How sleep influences brain plasticity is not known. In particular, why certain electroencephalographic (EEG) rhythms are linked to memory consolidation is poorly understood. Calcium activity in dendrites is known to be necessary for structural plasticity changes, but this has never been carefully examined during sleep. Here, we report that calcium activity in populations of neocortical dendrites is increased and synchronised during oscillations in the spindle range in naturally sleeping rodents. Remarkably, the same relationship is not found in cell bodies of the same neurons and throughout the cortical column. Spindles during sleep have been suggested to be important for brain development and plasticity. Our results provide evidence for a physiological link of spindles in the cortex specific to dendrites, the main site of synaptic plasticity.Different stages of sleep, marked by particular electroencephalographic (EEG) signatures, have been linked to memory consolidation, but underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Here, the authors show that dendritic calcium synchronisation correlates with spindle-rich sleep phases.