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High and asymmetric somato-dendritic coupling of V1 layer 5 neurons independent of visual stimulation and locomotion

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Original languageEnglish
Article numbere49145
Early online date27 Dec 2019
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 27 Dec 2019


Active dendrites impact sensory processing and behaviour. However, it remains unclear how active dendritic integration relates to somatic output in vivo. We imaged semi-simultaneously GCaMP6s signals in the soma, trunk and distal tuft dendrites of layer 5 pyramidal neurons in the awake mouse primary visual cortex. We found that apical tuft signals were dominated by widespread, highly correlated calcium transients throughout the tuft. While these signals were highly coupled to trunk and somatic transients, the frequency of calcium transients was found to decrease in a distance-dependent manner from soma to tuft. Ex vivo recordings suggest that low-frequency back-propagating action potentials underlie the distance-dependent loss of signals, while coupled somato-dendritic signals can be triggered by high-frequency somatic bursts or strong apical tuft depolarization. Visual stimulation and locomotion increased neuronal activity without affecting somato-dendritic coupling. High, asymmetric somato-dendritic coupling is therefore a widespread feature of layer 5 neurons activity in vivo.

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