Intracellular Ca2+ stores in neurons. Identification and functional aspects

J. Meldolesi, A. Villa, P. Podini, E. Clementi, D. Zacchetti, P. D'Andrea, P. Lorenzon, F. Grohovaz

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Various aspects of the rapidly exchanging intracellular Ca2+ stores of neurons and nerve cells are reviewed: their multiplicity, with separate sensitivity to either the second messenger, inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate, or ryanodine-caffeine (the latter stores are probably activated via Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release); their control of the plasma membrane Ca2+ permeability, via the activation of a peculiar type of cation channels; their ability to sustain localized heterogeneities of the [Ca2+]i that could be of physiological key-importance. Finally, the molecular composition of these stores is discussed. They are shown (by high resolution immunocytochemistry and subcellular fractionation) to express: i) a Ca2+ ATPase responsible for the accumulation of the cation; ii) Ca2+ binding protein(s) of low affinity and high capacity to keep Ca2+ stored; and iii) a Ca2+ channel, activated by either one of the mechanisms mentioned above, to release Ca2+ to the cytosol. Results obtained in Purkinje neurons document the heterogeneity of the stores and the strategical distribution of the corresponding organelles (calciosomes; specialized portions of the ER) within the cell body, dendrites and dendritic spines.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-30
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Physiology Paris
Issue number1-3
Publication statusPublished - 1992


  • inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate
  • intracellular Ca
  • ryanodine-caffeine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology (medical)
  • Neuroscience(all)


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