Dr Zuner Bortolotto

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Dr Zuner Bortolotto

2.11 Dorothy Hodgkin,
University Walk, Bristol
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Telephone Number (0117) 331 3148
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School of Physiology and Pharmacology

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Synaptic plasticity and epilepsy

Research overview

Understanding the mechanisms underlying basic functions of the brain, such as synaptic transmission and plasticity, is of fundamental importance to the molecular basis of neurological conditions affecting learning and memory and/or implicated in Alzheimer's disease and epilepsy. We are investigating the roles different receptor systems in the control of synaptic plasticity and epileptiform activity in the hippocampus.

Key words

Glutamate receptors, Synaptic plasticity, acetyl choline, Epileptic activity, LTP, LTD

Key findings

  • GluK1-containing KARs are important for regulating synaptic facilitation and LTP induction at hippocampal mossy fiber synapses Read more >
  • Activation of mGluRs can induce long-term alterations in synchronised network activity in the absence of chemical synaptic transmission
  • Setting of the mlecular switch is dependent on the activation of mGlu5 receptors Read more >

Diseases related to this field of research

Epilepsy, Alzheimer's desease

Processes and functions relevant to this work

Synaptic transmission, Learning and memory, development, behaviour

Techniques in routine use

Electrophysiological recording techniques, whole cell patch clamp

Equipment in routine use

Electrophysiology equipment, computer systems and analysis programs


Professor David E Jane
Professor Graham Collingridge
Professor David Lodge (Eli Lilly)


  • Neurosciences: Techniques in Neuroscience (Unit organiser plus PBL sessions, lab practical and lectures)
  • Anatomical Sciences: year III - Lectures (Pathophysiology of epilepsy and EEG)
  • BVSc - 2nd Year Vets - Neuroanatomy (Element lecturer)

Public engagement

I participate in 'hands-on' activities at events during Science week, brain awareness week ... etc

Key publications

  1. Bortolotto, Z, Collett, V, Conquet, F, Jia, Z & Collingridge, G 2008, ‘An analysis of the stimulus requirements for setting the molecular switch reveals a lower threshold for metaplasticity than synaptic plasticity’. Neuropharmacology, vol 55(4)., pp. 454 - 458
  2. Wikström, M, Matthews, P, Roberts, D, Collingridge, G & Bortolotto, Z 2003, ‘Parallel kinase cascades are involved in the induction of LTP at hippocampal CA1 synapses’. Neuropharmacology, vol 45 (6)., pp. 828 - 836

Latest publications

  1. Park, P, Volianskis, A, Sanderson, TM, Bortolotto, ZA, Jane, DE, Zhuo, M, Kaang, B-K & Collingridge, GL 2014, ‘NMDA receptor-dependent long-term potentiation comprises a family of temporally overlapping forms of synaptic plasticity that are induced by different patterns of stimulation’. Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences, vol 369., pp. 20130131
  2. Hanna, L, Ceolin, L, Lucas, S, Monn, J, Johnson, B, Collingridge, G, Bortolotto, Z & Lodge, D 2013, ‘Differentiating the roles of mGlu2 and mGlu3 receptors using LY541850, an mGlu2 agonist/mGlu3 antagonist’. Neuropharmacology, vol 66., pp. 114-121
  3. Lucas, SJ, Bortolotto, ZA, Collingridge, GL & Lodge, D 2013, ‘Selective activation of either mGlu2 or mGlu3 receptors can induce LTD in the amygdala’. Neuropharmacology, vol 66., pp. 196-201
  4. Mercier, MS, Lodge, D, Fang, G, Nicolas, CS, Collett, VJ, Jane, DE, Collingridge, GL & Bortolotto, ZA 2013, ‘Characterisation of an mGlu8 receptor-selective agonist and antagonist in the lateral and medial perforant path inputs to the dentate gyrus’. Neuropharmacology, vol 67., pp. 294-303
  5. Nicolas, CSC, Amici, M, Bortolotto, ZA, Doherty, AJ, Csaba, Z, Dournaud, P, Gressens, P, Collingridge, GL & Peineau, SAJ 2013, ‘The role of JAK-STAT signalling within the CNS’. JAK/STAT., pp. 1-10
  6. Collingridge, GL, Volianskis, A, Bannister, NJ, France, GM, Hanna, L, Mercier, MS, Tidball, PJ, Fang, GY, Irvine, MW, Costa, B, Monaghan, D, Bortolotto, ZA, Molnar, E, Lodge, D & Jane, DE 2013, ‘The NMDA receptor as a target for cognitive enhancemant’. Neuropharmacology, vol 64., pp. 13-26
  7. Nicolas, C, Peineau, S, Amici, M, Csaba, Z, Fafouri, A, Javalet, C, Collett, V, Hildebrandt, L, Seaton, G, Choi, S-L, Sim, S-E, Bradley, C, Lee, K, Zhuo, M, Kaang, B-K, Gressens, P, Dournaud, P, Fitzjohn, SM, Bortolotto, Z, Cho, K & Collingridge, G 2012, ‘The JAK/STAT pathway is involved in synaptic plasticity’. Neuron, vol 73., pp. 374 - 390
  8. Bradley, C, Peineau, S, Taghibiglou, C, Nicolas, C, Whitcomb, D, Bortolotto, Z, Kaang, BK, Cho, K, Wang, YT & Collingridge, G 2012, ‘A pivotal role of GSK-3 in synaptic plasticity’. Front Mol Neurosci, vol 5.

Full publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

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