Two models were recently proposed to enable us to understand the dynamics of synaptic vesicles in hippocampal neurons. In the caged diffusion model, the vesicles diffuse in small circular cages located randomly in the bouton, while in the stick-and-diffuse model the vesicles bind and release from a cellular cytomatrix. In this article, we obtain analytic expressions for the fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) autocorrelation function for the two models and test their predictions against our earlier FCS measurements of the vesicle dynamics. We find that the stick-and-diffuse model agrees much better with the experiment. We find also that, due to the slow dynamics of the vesicles, the finite experimental integration time has an important effect on the FCS autocorrelation function and demonstrate its effect for the different models. The two models of the dynamics are also relevant to other cellular environments where mobile species undergo slow diffusionlike motion in restricted spaces or bind and release from a stationary substrate.
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