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Where does the presynaptic membrane shrink

  1. Nov 8, 2014 #1
    During a synapse, a synaptic vesicle fuses with the presynaptic membrane releasing whatever neurotransmitters it contains. Neurotransmitters are then taken in through transport proteins during re-uptake. Stimulation occurs on a regular basis for some neurons and since the neurotransmitters are not entering through endocytosis, the membrane would just keep building.

    My thought is that there must be some reliable process that is taking in membrane just as frequently as its added to. Does anyone know what this process is? A cell probably wont just take in membrane, but bring something in with it, what could bring in so regularly?
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 8, 2014 #2


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  4. Nov 8, 2014 #3
    WOW! Thats incredibly, thank you!
    Are the contents of an endosome ever released?
    I'm just wondering if this could be used to get medicine into neurons.
    Or do you think the contents go directly to synaptic vesicles?

    I wonder if some HRP spread throughout the cell but was left out of the article because it was irrelevant.
    If an endosome fuses with a lysosome, i guess it depends on what the lysosome does with the contents.

    and what do you think stimulates this process?

    Any thoughts?
  5. Nov 8, 2014 #4


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    A recent paper showed that, after fusion of synaptic vesicles with the membrane, endocytosis in the area surrounding the active zone of the presynaptic terminal occurs exremely quickly (within 50-100 ms). This ultrafast endocytosis is thought to help maintain a constant amount of membrane during synaptic activity.

    See Watanabe et al. 2013. Ultrafast endocytosis at mouse hippocampal synapses. Nature 504: 242. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature12809 [Broken].
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2017
  6. Nov 14, 2014 #5


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    The same group that published the study about ultrafast endocytosis that I cited above just published a new paper in Nature. Here, they look at the fate of the endocytic vesicles after ultrafast endocytosis, which shows they traffic to endosomes, and new synaptic vesicles bud from these endosomes. Here's the abstract from the study:
    Watanabe et al. 2014. Clathrin regenerates synaptic vesicles from endosomes. Nature. 525: 228. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature13846 [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2017
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