Properties of Electrogenic Glutamate Uptake in Retinal Glia

  • B. Barbour
  • H. Brew
  • D. Attwell
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 194)


In the dark photoreceptors have a membrane potential of about -40mV. At this potential they continuously release neurotransmitter molecules onto bipolar and horizontal cells. When a photoreceptor absorbs light the membrane hyperpolarises (to a maximum of about —70mV) and the release of neurotransmitter is suppressed. The transmitter released by photoreceptors is thought to be glutamate (Marc and Lam, 1981; Brandon and Lam, 1983; Miller and Schwartz, 1983; Ayoub et al., 1988). The light-induced suppression of glutamate release from photoreceptors results in a voltage change in postsynaptic bipolar and horizontal cells. The speed of onset of the postsynaptic response is determined (at least partly) by how quickly the extracellular concentration of glutamate falls when release from photoreceptors is suppressed.


Glutamate Uptake Horizontal Cell Muller Cell Retinal Glial Cell Amino Acid Transmitter 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • B. Barbour
    • 1
  • H. Brew
    • 1
  • D. Attwell
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhysiologyUniversity College LondonEngland

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