Fyn, a member of the Src-family protein-tyrosine kinase (PTK), is implicated in learning and memory that involves N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor function. In this study, we examined how Fyn participates in synaptic plasticity by analyzing the physical and functional interaction between Fyn and NMDA receptors. Results showed that tyrosine phosphorylation of NR2A, one of the NMDA receptor subunits, was reduced in fyn-mutant mice. NR2A was tyrosine-phosphorylated in 293T cells when coexpressed with Fyn. Therefore, NR2A would be a substrate for Fyn in vivo. Results also showed that PSD-95, which directly binds to and coclusters with NMDA receptors, promotes Fyn-mediated tyrosine phosphorylation of NR2A. Different regions of PSD-95 associated with NR2A and Fyn, respectively, and so PSD-95 could mediate complex formation of Fyn with NR2A. PSD-95 also associated with other Src-family PTKs, Src, Yes, and Lyn. These results suggest that PSD-95 is critical for regulation of NMDA receptor activity by Fyn and other Src-family PTKs, serving as a molecular scaffold for anchoring these PTKs to NR2A.
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