Morphologic and electrophysiologic maturation in developing dentate gyrus granule cells

Xue Song Liu, Shilpa Tilwalli, Gui Lan Ye, Peter A. Lio, Joseph F. Pasternak, Barbara L. Trommer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


Dentate gyrus granule cells from immature (7-28 days) Sprague-Dawley rats were examined with whole cell patch clamp recordings and biocytin filling in in vitro hippocampal slice preparations. Although recordings were confined to the middle third of the suprapyramidal limb of the dentate, the granule cells exhibited marked variability in their physiologic properties: input resistance (IR) ranged from 250 MΩ to 3 GΩ, and resting membrane potential (RMP) from -82 to -41 mV. Both IR and RMP were inversely correlated with dendritic length, a morphometric indicator of cell maturity. Thus the highest IR cells were the youngest, and maturation was characterized by a progressive decrease in IR, hyperpolarization of RMP, and elongation of the dendritic arbor. When cells were grouped by IR, significant intergroup differences were found in RMP, dendritic length, and number of dendritic terminal branches. Although cells of all IR categories were examined throughout the age spectrum under study, none of the inter-IR group differences was age-dependent. These data suggest that IR provides a reasonable estimate of granule cell maturity and that maturation entails predictable changes in cell properties and morphology. These aspects of maturation correlate with each other, are independent of animal age, and most likely proceed according to a program related to cell birth. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)202-212
Number of pages11
JournalBrain research
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 2000


  • Dentate gyrus
  • Development
  • Granule cell
  • Hippocampus
  • Neuronal maturation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology


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