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Neuregulin-1/ErbB4 signaling regulates Kv4.2-mediated transient outward K+ current through the Akt/mTOR pathway.

Neuregulin-1 (NRG-1) is a member of a family of neurotrophic factors that is required for the differentiation, migration, and development of neurons. NRG-1 signaling is thought to contribute to both neuronal development and the neuropathology of schizophrenia, which is believed to be a neurodevelopmental disorder. However, few studies have investigated the role of NRG-1 on voltage-gated ion channels. In this study, we report that NRG-1 specifically increases the density of transient outward K(+) currents (IA) in rat cerebellar granule neurons (CGNs) in a time-dependent manner without modifying the activation or inactivation properties of IA channels. The increase in IA density is mediated by increased protein expression of Kv4.2, the main α-subunit of the IA channel, most likely by upregulation of translation. The effect of NRG-1 on IA density and Kv4.2 expression was only significant in immature neurons. Mechanistically, both Akt and mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling pathways are required for the increased NRG-1-induced IA density and expression of Kv4.2. Moreover, pharmacological blockade of the ErbB4 receptor reduced the effect of NRG-1 on IA density and Kv4.2 induction. Our data reveal, for the first time, that stimulation of ErbB4 signaling by NRG-1 upregulates the expression of K(+) channel proteins via activation of the Akt/mTOR signaling pathway and plays an important role in neuronal development and maturation. NRG1 does not acutely change IA and delayed-rectifier outward (IK) of rat CGNs, suggesting that it may not alter excitability of immature neurons by altering potassium channel property.

Pubmed ID: 23703525 RIS Download

Mesh terms: Animals | Cell Movement | Gene Expression Regulation | Membrane Potentials | Neuregulin-1 | Potassium | Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt | RNA, Messenger | Rats | Rats, Sprague-Dawley | Receptor, Epidermal Growth Factor | Receptor, ErbB-4 | Shal Potassium Channels | Signal Transduction | TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases

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