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What is required for neuronal calcium waves? A numerical parameter study. (English) Zbl 1395.92034
Summary: Neuronal calcium signals propagating by simple diffusion and reaction with mobile and stationary buffers are limited to cellular microdomains. The distance intracellular calcium signals can travel may be significantly increased by means of calcium-induced calcium release from internal calcium stores, notably the endoplasmic reticulum. The organelle, which can be thought of as a cell-within-a-cell, is able to sequester large amounts of cytosolic calcium ions via SERCA pumps and selectively release them into the cytosol through ryanodine receptor channels leading to the formation of calcium waves. In this study, we set out to investigate the basic properties of such dendritic calcium waves and how they depend on the three parameters dendrite radius, ER radius and ryanodine receptor density in the endoplasmic membrane. We demonstrate that there are stable and abortive regimes for calcium waves, depending on the above morphological and physiological parameters. In stable regimes, calcium waves can travel across long dendritic distances, similar to electrical action potentials. We further observe that abortive regimes exist, which could be relevant for spike-timing dependent plasticity, as travel distances and wave velocities vary with changing intracellular architecture. For some of these regimes, analytic functions could be derived that fit the simulation data. In parameter spaces, that are non-trivially influenced by the three-dimensional calcium concentration profile, we were not able to derive such a functional description, demonstrating the mathematical requirement to model and simulate biochemical signaling in three-dimensional space.

92C20 Neural biology
92C37 Cell biology
35K57 Reaction-diffusion equations
Full Text: DOI
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