The real catecholamine content of secretory vesicles in the CNS revealed by electrochemical cytometry
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2013

Resolution of synaptic vesicle neurotransmitter content has mostly been limited to the study of stimulated release in cultured cell systems, and it has been controversial as to whether synaptic vesicle transmitter levels are saturated in vivo. We use electrochemical cytometry to count dopamine molecules in individual synaptic vesicles in populations directly sampled from brain tissue. Vesicles from the striatum yield an average of 33,000 dopamine molecules per vesicle, an amount considerably greater than typically measured during quantal release at cultured neurons. Vesicular content was markedly increased by L-DOPA or decreased by reserpine in a time-dependent manner in response to in vivo administration of drugs known to alter dopamine release. We investigated the effects of the psychostimulant amphetamine on vesicle content, finding that vesicular transmitter is rapidly depleted by 50% following in vivo administration, supporting the "weak base hypothesis'' that amphetamine reduces synaptic vesicle transmitter and quantal size.


pc12 cells



ventral tegmental area


quantal size


substantia-nigra neurons




D. M. Omiatek

Pennsylvania State University

A. J. Bressler

Pennsylvania State University

Ann-Sofie Cans

Chalmers, Kemi- och bioteknik, Analytisk kemi

A. M. Andrews

David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA

M. L. Heien

Pennsylvania State University

Andrew Ewing

Chalmers, Kemi- och bioteknik, Analytisk kemi

Göteborgs universitet

Scientific Reports

2045-2322 (ISSN)

Vol. 3 artikel nr 1447- 1447