Research objectives and content
Recent data from the host laboratory has provided tantalising evidence for the possible somatodendritic Ca2+ -dependent vesicular release of a glutamate-like transmitter substance from cerebellar Purkinje cells (PCs). This fellowship proposal is concerned with the testing of this hypothesis using two approaches.
Firstly, using thin cerebellar slices, the whole-cell recording technique will enable the dialysis of neurotoxins and other poisons of vesicular release into PCs. Secondly, using laser-scanning confocal microscopy together with the styryl dye FM1-43 in either cultured Purkinje cells or organotypic cerebellar slices, the direct visualisation of any membrane (and thus vesicular) turnover will be possible.
Training content (objective, benefit and expected impact)
The host laboratory has extensive experience in patch-clamp recording and optical measurements from PCs. Moreover, the institute itself uniquely possesses all the technical and intellectual facilities for the learning of fluorescence imaging (in combination with patch-clamp recording) and cell culture techniques. This will enable the applicant to gain the experience necessary to fully utilize such technically demanding experimental protocols for his own, independent research upon returning to the UK. Links with industry / industrial relevance (22)