Bacterial endotoxin lipopolysaccharide enhances synaptic transmission at low-output glutamatergic synapses

Abigail Greenhalgh, Oscar Istas, Robin L. Cooper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The endotoxin lipopolysaccharides (LPS), secreted from gram-negative bacteria, has direct effects on synaptic transmission independent of systemic secondary cytokine responses. High concentration of LPS (500 μg/mL) from Serratia marcescens increased synaptic efficacy at glutamatergic low-output synapses more than for high-output synapses. Over an hour of exposure was not toxic to the preparation and continued to enhance synaptic transmission. A small but significant rapid hyperpolarization of the post-synaptic cells occurred, in addition to a slower enhancement of in the amplitude of evoked excitatory junction potentials. LPS may promote reserve pool vesicles to the readily releasable pool for low-output synapses. The action of LPS at the glutamatergic synapses of the crayfish neuromuscular junction is unique in promoting synaptic transmission as compared to other glutamatergic synapses in Drosophila and mammals, where synaptic transmission is depressed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-65
Number of pages7
JournalNeuroscience Research
StatePublished - Sep 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier B.V. and Japan Neuroscience Society


  • Endotoxin
  • Glutamate receptor
  • Glutamatergic
  • Lipopolysaccharide
  • Serratia
  • Synapse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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