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Calcium transients of neurons on the Hamamatsu FDSS/µCell System

Recording of compound induced calcium transients on the Hamamatsu FDSS/µCell System.

When a neuronal action potential reaches the nerve terminal, an influx of extracellular calcium occurs via the opening of voltage-dependent calcium channels in the presynaptic terminal. Stored neurotransmitters in the active zone are quickly released in response to this calcium influx – which can be inhibited using Ca2+ channel blockers. On the postsynaptic side, ionotropic and metabotropic receptors (which modulate activation of G-protein coupled receptors) activate downstream molecular machinery to potentiate or inhibit (e.g. GABA) further action potentials thereby modulating neuronal communication and activity. Drug effects on synaptic neuronal communication can be detected by monitoring drug-induced or affecting neurotransmitter-induced Ca2+ transients, making it a valuable tool in drug discovery and safety pharmacology assessment. The FDSS/µCell instrument (Hamamatsu) is a kinetic plate reader with an integrated dispensing head and imaging-based detector. Upon incubation of cells in culture with a calcium fluorescent dye, real-time changes in fluorescent calcium transients can be measured in Peri.4U® or CNS.4U® neurons with high-throughput (96 or 384-well plate format).