Plasticity and ambiguity of the electrophysiological phenotypes of enteric neurons

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Nurgali, Kulmira (2009) Plasticity and ambiguity of the electrophysiological phenotypes of enteric neurons. Neurogastroenterology and Motility, 21 (9). pp. 903-913. ISSN 1350-1925


Advances in knowledge of enteric neurons electrophysiological characteristics have led to the realisation that the properties of the neurons are dependent on the state of the intestine, the region, the method of recording and the species. Thus, under different experimental conditions, electrophysiological studies cannot provide a reliable signature that identifies the functional type of neuron. In the normal guinea-pig small intestine, taken as a model tissue, neurons can be separated into two electrophysiological groups, S and AH neurons. Combined morphological and physiological studies place several classes of motor and interneurons in the S group, and intrinsic primary afferent neurons in the AH group. There is some evidence for subgroups of S neurons, in which electrophysiological differences are correlated with functional subtypes, but these subgroups have been incompletely investigated. Morphologically characterized Dogiel type II (DII) neurons are recognisable in many species, from mouse to human, but their electrophysiological characteristics are only partly conserved across species or cannot be satisfactorily defined due to technical difficulties. There is a strong need for a comprehensive analysis of channels and currents of S/Dogiel type I neuron subtypes, similar to the comprehensive analysis of AH/DII neurons in the guinea-pig, and similar studies need to be conducted in human and other species. The purpose of this review is to highlight that criteria used for electrophysiological definition of enteric neurons might not be sufficient to distinguish between functional classes of neurons, due to intrinsic properties of neuronal subpopulations, plasticity in pathological conditions and differences in recording techniques.

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Item type Article
DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2982.2009.01329.x
Official URL
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1116 Medical Physiology
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Biomedical and Health Sciences
Keywords ResPubID18852, enteric neurons, electrophysiological classification, morphological types
Citations in Scopus 14 - View on Scopus
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