The endocannabinoid (eCB) signaling system has been functionally implicated in many brain regions. Our understanding of the role of cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) in olfactory processing remains limited. Cannabinoid signaling is involved in regulating glomerular activity in the main olfactory bulb (MOB). However, the cannabinoid-related circuitry of inputs to mitral cells in the MOB has not been fully determined. Using anatomical and functional approaches we have explored this question. CB1 was present in periglomerular processes of a GAD65-positive subpopulation of interneurons but not in mitral cells. We detected eCBs in the mouse MOB as well as the expression of CB1 and other genes associated with cannabinoid signaling in the MOB. Patch-clamp electrophysiology demonstrated that CB1 agonists activated mitral cells and evoked an inward current, while CB1 antagonists reduced firing and evoked an outward current. CB1 effects on mitral cells were absent in subglomerular slices in which the olfactory nerve layer and glomerular layer were removed, suggesting the glomerular layer as the site of CB1 action. We previously observed that GABAergic periglomerular cells show the inverse response pattern to CB1 activation compared with mitral cells, suggesting that CB1 indirectly regulates mitral cell activity as a result of cellular activation of glomerular GABAergic processes. This hypothesis was supported by the finding that cannabinoids modulated synaptic transmission to mitral cells. We conclude that CB1 directly regulates GABAergic processes in the glomerular layer to control GABA release and, in turn, regulates mitral cell activity with potential effects on olfactory threshold and behavior. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Cannabinoid signaling with cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) is involved in the regulation of glomerular activity in the main olfactory bulb (MOB). We detected endocannabinoids in the mouse MOB. CB1 was present in periglomerular processes of a GAD65-positive subpopulation of interneurons. CB1 agonists activated mitral cells. CB1 directly regulates GABAergic processes to control GABA release and, in turn, regulates mitral cell activity with potential effects on olfactory threshold and behavior.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes