In violation of Dale’s principle several neuronal subtypes utilize more than one classical neurotransmitter. Molecular identification of vesicular glutamate transporter three and cholecystokinin expressing cortical interneurons (CCK+VGluT3+INTs) has prompted speculation of GABA/glutamate corelease from these cells for almost two decades despite a lack of direct evidence. We unequivocally demonstrate CCK+VGluT3+INT-mediated GABA/glutamate cotransmission onto principal cells in adult mice using paired recording and optogenetic approaches. Although under normal conditions, GABAergic inhibition dominates CCK+VGluT3+INT signaling, glutamatergic signaling becomes predominant when glutamate decarboxylase (GAD) function is compromised. CCK+VGluT3+INTs exhibit surprising anatomical diversity comprising subsets of all known dendrite targeting CCK+ interneurons in addition to the expected basket cells, and their extensive circuit innervation profoundly dampens circuit excitability under normal conditions. However, in contexts where the glutamatergic phenotype of CCK+VGluT3+INTs is amplified, they promote paradoxical network hyperexcitability which may be relevant to disorders involving GAD dysfunction such as schizophrenia or vitamin B6 deficiency.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)