Induction of hippocampal long-term potentiation increases the morphological dynamics of microglial processes and prolongs their contacts with dendritic spines
Sci Rep. 2016-09-08; 6(1):
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1. Sci Rep. 2016 Sep 8;6:32422. doi: 10.1038/srep32422.
Induction of hippocampal long-term potentiation increases the morphological
dynamics of microglial processes and prolongs their contacts with dendritic
Pfeiffer T(1)(2), Avignone E(1)(2), Nägerl UV(1)(2).
(1)Interdisciplinary Institute for Neuroscience, UMR 5297 CNRS, Bordeaux, France.
(2)Université de Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France.
Recently microglia, the resident immune cells of the brain, have been recognized
as multi-tasking talents that are not only essential in the diseased brain, but
also actively contribute to synaptic circuit remodeling during normal brain
development. It is well established that microglia dynamically scan their
environment and thereby establish transient physical contacts with neuronal
synapses, which may allow them to sense and influence synaptic function. However,
it is unknown whether and how the morphological dynamics of microglia and their
physical interactions with synapses are affected by the induction of synaptic
plasticity in the adult brain. To this end, we characterized the morphological
dynamics of microglia and their interactions with synapses before and after the
induction of synaptic plasticity (LTP) in the hippocampus by time-lapse
two-photon imaging and electrophysiological recordings in acute brain slices. We
demonstrate that during hippocampal LTP microglia alter their morphological
dynamics by increasing the number of their processes and by prolonging their
physical contacts with dendritic spines. These effects were absent in the
presence of an NMDA receptor antagonist. Taken together, this altered behavior
could reflect an active microglial involvement in circuit remodeling during
activity-dependent synaptic plasticity in the healthy adult brain.
PMID: 27604518 [Indexed for MEDLINE]