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PSD-95 MAGUK scaffolding protein antibody

RRID:AB_10698024

Antibody ID

AB_10698024

Target Antigen

PSD-95 MAGUK scaffolding protein null

Vendor

UC Davis/NIH NeuroMab Facility Go To Vendor

Cat Num

73-028

Proper Citation

(UC Davis/NIH NeuroMab Facility Cat# 73-028, RRID:AB_10698024)

Clonality

monoclonal antibody

Clone ID

K28/43

Host Organism

mouse

Comments

Originating manufacturer of this product. Applications: IB, ICC, IGEM, IHC, IP, KO, WB. Validation status: IF or IB (Pass), IB in brain (Pass), IHC in brain (Pass), KO (Pass).

Publications that use this research resource

The Progestin Receptor Interactome in the Female Mouse Hypothalamus: Interactions with Synaptic Proteins Are Isoform Specific and Ligand Dependent.

  • Acharya KD
  • eNeuro
  • 2018 May 30

Literature context: lone K28/43; #73-028, NeuroMab, RRID:AB_10698024), synapsin-I rabbit polyclonal


Abstract:

Progestins bind to the progestin receptor (PR) isoforms, PR-A and PR-B, in brain to influence development, female reproduction, anxiety, and stress. Hormone-activated PRs associate with multiple proteins to form functional complexes. In the present study, proteins from female mouse hypothalamus that associate with PR were isolated using affinity pull-down assays with glutathione S-transferase-tagged mouse PR-A and PR-B. Using complementary proteomics approaches, reverse phase protein array (RPPA) and mass spectrometry, we identified hypothalamic proteins that interact with PR in a ligand-dependent and isoform-specific manner and were confirmed by Western blot. Synaptic proteins, including synapsin-I and synapsin-II, interacted with agonist-bound PR isoforms, suggesting that both isoforms function in synaptic plasticity. In further support, synaptogyrin-III and synapsin-III associated with PR-A and PR-B, respectively. PR also interacted with kinases, including c-Src, mTOR, and MAPK1, confirming phosphorylation as an integral process in rapid effects of PR in the brain. Consistent with a role in transcriptional regulation, PR associated with transcription factors and coactivators in a ligand-specific and isoform-dependent manner. Interestingly, both PR isoforms associated with a key regulator of energy homeostasis, FoxO1, suggesting a novel role for PR in energy metabolism. Because many identified proteins in this PR interactome are synaptic proteins, we tested the hypothesis that progestins function in synaptic plasticity. Indeed, progesterone enhanced synaptic density, by increasing synapsin-I-positive synapses, in rat primary cortical neuronal cultures. This novel combination of RPPA and mass spectrometry allowed identification of PR action in synaptic remodeling and energy homeostasis and reveals unique roles for progestins in brain function and disease.

Filopodia Conduct Target Selection in Cortical Neurons Using Differences in Signal Kinetics of a Single Kinase.

  • Mao YT
  • Neuron
  • 2018 May 16

Literature context: ab Cat#: 73-028;RRID:AB_10698024 Rabbit anti-actin Sigma-Aldrich


Abstract:

Dendritic filopodia select synaptic partner axons by interviewing the cell surface of potential targets, but how filopodia decipher the complex pattern of adhesive and repulsive molecular cues to find appropriate contacts is unknown. Here, we demonstrate in cortical neurons that a single cue is sufficient for dendritic filopodia to reject or select specific axonal contacts for elaboration as synaptic sites. Super-resolution and live-cell imaging reveals that EphB2 is located in the tips of filopodia and at nascent synaptic sites. Surprisingly, a genetically encoded indicator of EphB kinase activity, unbiased classification, and a photoactivatable EphB2 reveal that simple differences in the kinetics of EphB kinase signaling at the tips of filopodia mediate the choice between retraction and synaptogenesis. This may enable individual filopodia to choose targets based on differences in the activation rate of a single tyrosine kinase, greatly simplifying the process of partner selection and suggesting a general principle.

Funding information:
  • European Research Council - 250244(International)

eIF4B phosphorylation at Ser504 links synaptic activity with protein translation in physiology and pathology.

  • Bettegazzi B
  • Sci Rep
  • 2017 Sep 5

Literature context: NeuroMab Facility, Cat# 73-028, RRID:AB_10698024, Antibodies Inc., Davis, CA, US


Abstract:

Neuronal physiology requires activity-driven protein translation, a process in which translation initiation factors are key players. We focus on eukaryotic initiation factor 4B (eIF4B), a regulator of protein translation, whose function in neurons is undetermined. We show that neuronal activity affects eIF4B phosphorylation and identify Ser504 as a phosphorylation site regulated by casein kinases and sensitive to the activation of metabotropic glutamate receptors. Ser504 phosphorylation increases eIF4B recruitment to the pre-initiation complex and influences eIF4B localization at synapses. Moreover, Ser504 phosphorylation modulates the translation of protein kinase Mζ. Therefore, by sensing synaptic activity, eIF4B could adjust translation to neuronal needs, promoting adaptive changes in synaptic plasticity. We also show that Ser504 phosphorylation is increased in vivo in a rat model of epilepsy during epileptogenesis i.e. when translation drives maladaptive synaptic changes. We propose eIF4B as a mediator between neuronal activity and translation, with relevance in the control of synaptic plasticity.

Mechanisms of Kappa Opioid Receptor Potentiation of Dopamine D2 Receptor Function in Quinpirole-Induced Locomotor Sensitization in Rats.

  • Escobar AP
  • Int. J. Neuropsychopharmacol.
  • 2017 Aug 1

Literature context: ation), PSD-95 (1/1000, 73-028, RRID:AB_10698024, UC Davis/NIH NeuroMab Facility


Abstract:

Background: Increased locomotor activity in response to the same stimulus is an index of behavioral sensitization observed in preclinical models of drug addiction and compulsive behaviors. Repeated administration of quinpirole, a D2/D3 dopamine agonist, induces locomotor sensitization. This effect is potentiated and accelerated by co-administration of U69593, a kappa opioid receptor agonist. The mechanism underlying kappa opioid receptor potentiation of quinpirole-induced locomotor sensitization remains to be elucidated. Methods: Immunofluorescence anatomical studies were undertaken in mice brain slices and rat presynaptic synaptosomes to reveal kappa opioid receptor and D2R pre- and postsynaptic colocalization in the nucleus accumbens. Tonic and phasic dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens of rats repeatedly treated with U69593 and quinpirole was assessed by microdialysis and fast scan cyclic voltammetry. Results: Anatomical data show that kappa opioid receptor and D2R colocalize postsynaptically in medium spiny neurons of the nucleus accumbens and the highest presynaptic colocalization occurs on the same dopamine terminals. Significantly reduced dopamine levels were observed in quinpirole, and U69593-quinpirole treated rats, explaining sensitization of D2R. Presynaptic inhibition induced by kappa opioid receptor and D2R of electrically evoked dopamine release was faster in U69593-quinpirole compared with quinpirole-repeatedly treated rats. Conclusions: Pre- and postsynaptic colocalization of kappa opioid receptor and D2R supports a role for kappa opioid receptor potentiating both the D2R inhibitory autoreceptor function and the inhibitory action of D2R on efferent medium spiny neurons. Kappa opioid receptor co-activation accelerates D2R sensitization by contributing to decrease dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens.

Fusion Competent Synaptic Vesicles Persist upon Active Zone Disruption and Loss of Vesicle Docking.

  • Wang SSH
  • Neuron
  • 2016 Aug 17

Literature context: 1:1000PSD-95mouse73-028NeuroMabAB_10698024yesIS 1:500, IB 1:500GluA1mouse1


Abstract:

In a nerve terminal, synaptic vesicle docking and release are restricted to an active zone. The active zone is a protein scaffold that is attached to the presynaptic plasma membrane and opposed to postsynaptic receptors. Here, we generated conditional knockout mice removing the active zone proteins RIM and ELKS, which additionally led to loss of Munc13, Bassoon, Piccolo, and RIM-BP, indicating disassembly of the active zone. We observed a near-complete lack of synaptic vesicle docking and a strong reduction in vesicular release probability and the speed of exocytosis, but total vesicle numbers, SNARE protein levels, and postsynaptic densities remained unaffected. Despite loss of the priming proteins Munc13 and RIM and of docked vesicles, a pool of releasable vesicles remained. Thus, the active zone is necessary for synaptic vesicle docking and to enhance release probability, but releasable vesicles can be localized distant from the presynaptic plasma membrane.

Funding information:
  • MRC - 200829/Z/16/Z(United Kingdom)

Casein kinase 2 phosphorylates GluA1 and regulates its surface expression.

  • Lussier MP
  • Eur. J. Neurosci.
  • 2014 Dec 18

Literature context:


Abstract:

Controlling the density of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors (AMPARs) at synapses is essential for regulating the strength of excitatory neurotransmission. In particular, the phosphorylation of AMPARs is important for defining both synaptic expression and intracellular routing of receptors. Phosphorylation is a post-translational modification known to regulate many cellular events and the C-termini of glutamate receptors are important targets. Recently, the first intracellular loop1 region of the GluA1 subunit of AMPARs was reported to regulate synaptic targeting through phosphorylation of S567 by Ca2+ /calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII). Intriguingly, the loop1 region of all four AMPAR subunits contains many putative phosphorylation sites (S/T/Y), leaving the possibility that other kinases may regulate AMPAR surface expression via phosphorylation of the loop regions. To explore this hypothesis, we used in vitro phosphorylation assays with a small panel of purified kinases and found that casein kinase 2 (CK2) phosphorylates the GluA1 and GluA2 loop1 regions, but not GluA3 or GluA4. Interestingly, when we reduced the endogenous expression of CK2 using a specific short hairpin RNA against the regulatory subunit CK2β, we detected a reduction of GluA1 surface expression, whereas GluA2 was unchanged. Furthermore, we identified S579 of GluA1 as a substrate of CK2, and the expression of GluA1 phosphodeficient mutants in hippocampal neurons displayed reduced surface expression. Therefore, our study identifies CK2 as a regulator of GluA1 surface expression by phosphorylating the intracellular loop1 region.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - NS-23805(United States)

Ablation of ErbB4 from excitatory neurons leads to reduced dendritic spine density in mouse prefrontal cortex.

  • Cooper MA
  • J. Comp. Neurol.
  • 2014 Oct 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

Dendritic spine loss is observed in many psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia, and likely contributes to the altered sense of reality, disruption of working memory, and attention deficits that characterize these disorders. ErbB4, a member of the EGF family of receptor tyrosine kinases, is genetically associated with schizophrenia, suggesting that alterations in ErbB4 function contribute to the disease pathology. Additionally, ErbB4 functions in synaptic plasticity, leading us to hypothesize that disruption of ErbB4 signaling may affect dendritic spine development. We show that dendritic spine density is reduced in the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex of ErbB4 conditional whole-brain knockout mice. We find that ErbB4 localizes to dendritic spines of excitatory neurons in cortical neuronal cultures and is present in synaptic plasma membrane preparations. Finally, we demonstrate that selective ablation of ErbB4 from excitatory neurons leads to a decrease in the proportion of mature spines and an overall reduction in dendritic spine density in the prefrontal cortex of weanling (P21) mice that persists at 2 months of age. These results suggest that ErbB4 signaling in excitatory pyramidal cells is critical for the proper formation and maintenance of dendritic spines in excitatory pyramidal cells.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - R44 NS074540(United States)

DSCAM localization and function at the mouse cone synapse.

  • de Andrade GB
  • J. Comp. Neurol.
  • 2014 Aug 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

The Down syndrome cell adhesion molecule (DSCAM) is required for regulation of cell number, soma spacing, and cell type-specific dendrite avoidance in many types of retinal ganglion and amacrine cells. In this study we assay the organization of cells making up the outer plexiform layer of the retina in the absence of Dscam. Some types of OFF bipolar cells, type 3b and type 4 bipolar cells, had defects in dendrite arborization in the Dscam mutant retina, whereas other cell types appeared similar to wild type. The cone synapses that these cells project their dendrites to were intact, as visualized by electron microscopy, and had a distribution and density that was not significantly different from that of wild type. The spacing of type 3b bipolar cell dendrites was further analyzed by Voronoi domain analysis, density recovery profiling (DRP) analysis, and nearest neighbor analysis. Spacing was found to be significantly different when wild-type and mutant type 3b bipolar cell dendrites were compared. Defects in arborization of these bipolar cells could not be attributed to the disorganization of inner plexiform layer cells that occurs in the Dscam mutant retina or an increase in cell number, as they arborized when Dscam was targeted in retinal ganglion cells only or in the bax null retina. Localization of DSCAM was assayed and the protein was localized near to cone synapses in mouse, macaque, and ground squirrel retinas. DSCAM protein was detected in several types of bipolar cells, including type 3b and type 4 bipolar cells.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - R56 NS094589(United States)

Neural differentiation of pluripotent cells in 3D alginate-based cultures.

  • Bozza A
  • Biomaterials
  • 2014 May 25

Literature context:


Abstract:

Biomaterial-supported culture methods, allowing for directed three-dimensional differentiation of stem cells are an alternative to canonical two-dimensional cell cultures. In this paper, we evaluate the suitability of alginate for three-dimensional cultures to enhance differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) towards neural lineages. We tested whether encapsulation of mESCs within alginate beads could support and/or enhance neural differentiation with respect to two-dimensional cultures. We encapsulated cells in beads of alginate with or without modification by fibronectin (Fn) or hyaluronic acid (HA). Gene expression analysis showed that cells grown in alginate and alginate-HA present increased differentiation toward neural lineages with respect to the two-dimensional control and to Fn group. Immunocytochemistry analyses confirmed these results, further showing terminal differentiation of neurons as seen by the expression of synaptic markers and markers of different neuronal subtypes. Our data show that alginate, alone or modified, is a suitable biomaterial to promote in vitro differentiation of pluripotent cells toward neural fates.

Funding information:
  • NHLBI NIH HHS - HL107147(United States)

Down-regulation of endogenous KLHL1 decreases voltage-gated calcium current density.

  • Perissinotti PP
  • Cell Calcium
  • 2014 May 5

Literature context:


Abstract:

The actin-binding protein Kelch-like 1 (KLHL1) can modulate voltage-gated calcium channels in vitro. KLHL1 interacts with actin and with the pore-forming subunits of Cav2.1 and CaV3.2 calcium channels, resulting in up-regulation of P/Q and T-type current density. Here we tested whether endogenous KLHL1 modulates voltage gated calcium currents in cultured hippocampal neurons by down-regulating the expression of KLHL1 via adenoviral delivery of shRNA targeted against KLHL1 (shKLHL1). Control adenoviruses did not affect any of the neuronal properties measured, yet down-regulation of KLHL1 resulted in HVA current densities ~68% smaller and LVA current densities 44% smaller than uninfected controls, with a concomitant reduction in α(1A) and α(1H) protein levels. Biophysical analysis and western blot experiments suggest Ca(V)3.1 and 3.3 currents are also present in shKLHL1-infected neurons. Synapsin I levels, miniature postsynaptic current frequency, and excitatory and inhibitory synapse number were reduced in KLHL1 knockdown. This study corroborates the physiological role of KLHL1 as a calcium channel modulator and demonstrates a novel, presynaptic role.

Funding information:
  • Medical Research Council - G0800034(United Kingdom)
  • NCI NIH HHS - CA133346(United States)

Effect of memantine on L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia in the 6-OHDA-lesioned rat model of Parkinson's disease.

  • Tronci E
  • Neuroscience
  • 2014 Apr 18

Literature context:


Abstract:

An increasing body of experimental evidence demonstrates that the glutamatergic system is involved in the genesis of l-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA)-induced dyskinesia (LID). Indeed, the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist amantadine is the only anti-dyskinetic compound used in patients, albeit with limited efficacy and side effects. In this study, we investigated the anti-dyskinetic properties of memantine, a non-competitive NMDA receptor antagonist in clinical use for the treatment of dementia, in the 6-hydroxy-dopamine (6-OHDA)-lesion rat model of Parkinson's disease. For comparison, parallel experiments were also performed with amantadine. First, we investigated the acute effect of different doses of memantine (5, 10, 15 and 20mg/kg), and amantadine (10, 20, 40, 60mg/kg) on established dyskinesia induced by L-DOPA (6mg/kg plus benserazide). Results showed that both memantine and amantadine produced a significant reduction of LID. Afterward, drug-naïve and L-DOPA-primed 6-OHDA-lesioned rats were sub-chronically treated with daily injections of L-DOPA (6mg/kg plus benserazide) alone, or in combination with the effective doses of memantine, while amantadine was tested in already dyskinetic rats. Results showed that memantine significantly dampened dyskinesia in both drug-naïve and L-DOPA-primed rats, but only during the first few days of administration. In fact, the anti-dyskinetic effect of memantine was completely lost already at the fifth administration, indicating a rapid induction of tolerance. Interestingly, a 3-week washout period was not sufficient to restore the anti-dyskinetic effect of the drug. Similarly, amantadine was able to dampen already established dyskinesia only during the first day of administration. Moreover, memantine partially decreased the therapeutic effect of L-DOPA, as showed by the result of the stepping test. Finally, loss of the anti-dyskinetic effect of memantine was associated to increased synaptic GluN2A/GluN2B ratio at striatal synaptic membranes. Our results are in line with clinical observations suggesting that NMDA receptor blockade may only be transiently effective against LID in PD patients.

Funding information:
  • Intramural NIH HHS - (United States)
  • NINDS NIH HHS - R01NS057295(United States)

Microglia convert aggregated amyloid-β into neurotoxic forms through the shedding of microvesicles.

  • Joshi P
  • Cell Death Differ.
  • 2014 Apr 10

Literature context:


Abstract:

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by extracellular amyloid-β (Aβ) deposition, which activates microglia, induces neuroinflammation and drives neurodegeneration. Recent evidence indicates that soluble pre-fibrillar Aβ species, rather than insoluble fibrils, are the most toxic forms of Aβ. Preventing soluble Aβ formation represents, therefore, a major goal in AD. We investigated whether microvesicles (MVs) released extracellularly by reactive microglia may contribute to AD degeneration. We found that production of myeloid MVs, likely of microglial origin, is strikingly high in AD patients and in subjects with mild cognitive impairment and that AD MVs are toxic for cultured neurons. The mechanism responsible for MV neurotoxicity was defined in vitro using MVs produced by primary microglia. We demonstrated that neurotoxicity of MVs results from (i) the capability of MV lipids to promote formation of soluble Aβ species from extracellular insoluble aggregates and (ii) from the presence of neurotoxic Aβ forms trafficked to MVs after Aβ internalization into microglia. MV neurotoxicity was neutralized by the Aβ-interacting protein PrP and anti-Aβ antibodies, which prevented binding to neurons of neurotoxic soluble Aβ species. This study identifies microglia-derived MVs as a novel mechanism by which microglia participate in AD degeneration, and suggest new therapeutic strategies for the treatment of the disease.

Funding information:
  • Intramural NIH HHS - 5 R37 MH038256(United States)
  • Wellcome Trust - (United Kingdom)

Cortical synaptic NMDA receptor deficits in α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor gene deletion models: implications for neuropsychiatric diseases.

  • Lin H
  • Neurobiol. Dis.
  • 2014 Mar 20

Literature context:


Abstract:

Microdeletion of the human CHRNA7 gene (α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, nAChR) as well as dysfunction in N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) have been associated with cortical dysfunction in a broad spectrum of neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric disorders including schizophrenia. However, the pathophysiological roles of synaptic vs. extrasynaptic NMDARs and their interactions with α7 nAChRs in cortical dysfunction remain largely uncharacterized. Using a combination of in vivo and in vitro models, we demonstrate that α7 nAChR gene deletion leads to specific loss of synaptic NMDARs and their coagonist, d-serine, as well as glutamatergic synaptic deficits in mouse cortex. α7 nAChR null mice had decreased cortical NMDAR expression and glutamatergic synapse formation during postnatal development. Similar reductions in NMDAR expression and glutamatergic synapse formation were revealed in cortical cultures lacking α7 nAChRs. Interestingly, synaptic, but not extrasynaptic, NMDAR currents were specifically diminished in cultured cortical pyramidal neurons as well as in acute prefrontal cortical slices of α7 nAChR null mice. Moreover, d-serine responsive synaptic NMDAR-mediated currents and levels of the d-serine synthetic enzyme serine racemase were both reduced in α7 nAChR null cortical pyramidal neurons. Our findings thus identify specific loss of synaptic NMDARs and their coagonist, d-serine, as well as glutamatergic synaptic deficits in α7 nAChR gene deletion models of cortical dysfunction, thereby implicating α7 nAChR-mediated control of synaptic NMDARs and serine racemase/d-serine pathways in cortical dysfunction underlying many neuropsychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders, particularly those associated with deletion of human CHRNA7.

Funding information:
  • NCRR NIH HHS - 3P41RR024851-02S1(United States)

Quantitative proteomic profiling reveals novel region-specific markers in the adult mouse brain.

  • Dagley LF
  • Proteomics
  • 2014 Feb 4

Literature context:


Abstract:

Despite major advances in neuroscience, a comprehensive understanding of the structural and functional components of the adult brain compartments remains to be fully elucidated at a quantitative molecular level. Indeed, over half of the soluble- and membrane-annotated proteins are currently unmapped within online digital brain atlases. In this study, two complementary approaches were used to assess the unique repertoire of proteins enriched within select regions of the adult mouse CNS, including the brain stem, cerebellum, and remaining brain hemispheres. Of the 1200 proteins visualized by 2D-DIGE, approximately 150 (including cytosolic and membrane proteins) were found to exhibit statistically significant changes in relative abundance thus representing putative region-specific brain markers. In addition to using a high-precision (18) O-labeling strategy for the quantitative LC-MS/MS mapping of membrane proteins isolated from myelin-enriched fractions, we have identified over 1000 proteins that have yet to be described in any other mammalian myelin proteome. A comparison of our myelin proteome was made to an existing transcriptome database containing mRNA abundance profiles during oligodendrocyte differentiation and has confirmed statistically significant abundance changes for ∼500 of these newly mapped proteins, thus revealing new roles in oligodendrocyte and myelin biology. These data offer a resource for the neuroscience community studying the molecular basis for specialized neuronal activities in the CNS and myelin-related disorders. The MS proteomics data associated with this manuscript have been deposited to the ProteomeXchange Consortium with the dataset identifier PXD000327 (http://proteomecentral.proteomexchange.org/dataset/PXD000327).

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - R01-NS060120(United States)

Ouabain-induced cochlear nerve degeneration: synaptic loss and plasticity in a mouse model of auditory neuropathy.

  • Yuan Y
  • J. Assoc. Res. Otolaryngol.
  • 2014 Feb 27

Literature context:


Abstract:

Ouabain application to the round window can selectively destroy type-I spiral ganglion cells, producing an animal model of auditory neuropathy. To assess the long-term effects of this deafferentation on synaptic organization in the organ of Corti and cochlear nucleus, and to ask whether surviving cochlear neurons show any post-injury plasticity in the adult, we quantified the peripheral and central synapses of type-I neurons at posttreatment times ranging from 1 to 3 months. Measures of normal DPOAEs and greatly reduced auditory brainstem responses (ABRs) confirmed the neuropathy phenotype. Counts of presynaptic ribbons and postsynaptic glutamate receptor patches in the inner hair cell area decreased with post-exposure time, as did counts of cochlear nerve terminals in the cochlear nucleus. Although these counts provided no evidence of new synapse formation via branching from surviving neurons, the regular appearance of ectopic neurons in the inner hair cell area suggested that neurite extension is not uncommon. Correlations between pathophysiology and histopathology showed that ABR thresholds are very insensitive to even massive neural degeneration, whereas the amplitude of ABR wave 1 is a better metric of synaptic degeneration.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - GM19351(United States)

CaMKII phosphorylation of neuroligin-1 regulates excitatory synapses.

  • Bemben MA
  • Nat. Neurosci.
  • 2014 Jan 26

Literature context:


Abstract:

Neuroligins are postsynaptic cell adhesion molecules that are important for synaptic function through their trans-synaptic interaction with neurexins (NRXNs). The localization and synaptic effects of neuroligin-1 (NL-1, also called NLGN1) are specific to excitatory synapses with the capacity to enhance excitatory synapses dependent on synaptic activity or Ca(2+)/calmodulin kinase II (CaMKII). Here we report that CaMKII robustly phosphorylates the intracellular domain of NL-1. We show that T739 is the dominant CaMKII site on NL-1 and is phosphorylated in response to synaptic activity in cultured rodent neurons and sensory experience in vivo. Furthermore, a phosphodeficient mutant (NL-1 T739A) reduces the basal and activity-driven surface expression of NL-1, leading to a reduction in neuroligin-mediated excitatory synaptic potentiation. To the best of our knowledge, our results are the first to demonstrate a direct functional interaction between CaMKII and NL-1, two primary components of excitatory synapses.

Funding information:
  • NIDA NIH HHS - DA003910(United States)

Peptidylglycine α-amidating monooxygenase heterozygosity alters brain copper handling with region specificity.

  • Gaier ED
  • J. Neurochem.
  • 2013 Dec 3

Literature context:


Abstract:

Copper (Cu), an essential trace element present throughout the mammalian nervous system, is crucial for normal synaptic function. Neuronal handling of Cu is poorly understood. We studied the localization and expression of Atp7a, the major intracellular Cu transporter in the brain, and its relation to peptidylglycine α-amidating monooxygenase (PAM), an essential cuproenzyme and regulator of Cu homeostasis in neuroendocrine cells. Based on biochemical fractionation and immunostaining of dissociated neurons, Atp7a was enriched in post-synaptic vesicular fractions. Cu followed a similar pattern, with ~ 20% of total Cu in synaptosomes. A mouse model heterozygous for the Pam gene (PAM+/−) was selectively Cu deficient in the amygdala. As in cortex and hippocampus, Atp7a and PAM expression overlap in the amygdala, with highest expression in interneurons. Messenger RNA levels of Atox-1 and Atp7a, which deliver Cu to the secretory pathway, were reduced in the amygdala but not in the hippocampus in PAM+/− mice, GABAB receptor mRNA levels were similarly affected. Consistent with Cu deficiency, dopamine β-monooxygenase function was impaired as evidenced by elevated dopamine metabolites in the amygdala, but not in the hippocampus, of PAM+/− mice. These alterations in Cu delivery to the secretory pathway in the PAM+/− amygdala may contribute to the physiological and behavioral deficits observed. Atp7a, a Cu-transporting P-type ATPase, is localized to the trans-Golgi network and to vesicles distributed throughout the dendritic arbor. Tissue-specific alterations in Atp7a expression were found in mice heterozygous for peptidylglycine α-amidating monooxygenase (PAM), an essential neuropeptide-synthesizing cuproenzyme. Atp7a and PAM are highly expressed in amygdalar interneurons. Reduced amygdalar expression of Atox-1 and Atp7a in PAM heterozygous mice may lead to reduced synaptic Cu levels, contributing to the behavioral and neurochemical alterations seen in these mice.

Funding information:
  • NICHD NIH HHS - HD40035(United States)

The novel caspase-3 substrate Gap43 is involved in AMPA receptor endocytosis and long-term depression.

  • Han MH
  • Mol. Cell Proteomics
  • 2013 Dec 9

Literature context:


Abstract:

The cysteine protease caspase-3, best known as an executioner of cell death in apoptosis, also plays a non-apoptotic role in N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor-dependent long-term depression of synaptic transmission (NMDAR-LTD) and α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor endocytosis in neurons. The mechanism by which caspase-3 regulates LTD and AMPA receptor endocytosis, however, remains unclear. Here, we addressed this question by using an enzymatic N-terminal peptide enrichment method and mass spectrometry to identify caspase-3 substrates in neurons. Of the many candidates revealed by this proteomic study, we have confirmed BASP1, Dbn1, and Gap43 as true caspase-3 substrates. Moreover, in hippocampal neurons, Gap43 mutants deficient in caspase-3 cleavage inhibit AMPA receptor endocytosis and LTD. We further demonstrated that Gap43, a protein well-known for its functions in axons, is also localized at postsynaptic sites. Our study has identified Gap43 as a key caspase-3 substrate involved in LTD and AMPA receptor endocytosis, uncovered a novel postsynaptic function for Gap43 and provided new insights into how long-term synaptic depression is induced.

PRICKLE1 interaction with SYNAPSIN I reveals a role in autism spectrum disorders.

  • Paemka L
  • PLoS ONE
  • 2013 Dec 6

Literature context:


Abstract:

The frequent comorbidity of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) with epilepsy suggests a shared underlying genetic susceptibility; several genes, when mutated, can contribute to both disorders. Recently, PRICKLE1 missense mutations were found to segregate with ASD. However, the mechanism by which mutations in this gene might contribute to ASD is unknown. To elucidate the role of PRICKLE1 in ASDs, we carried out studies in Prickle1(+/-) mice and Drosophila, yeast, and neuronal cell lines. We show that mice with Prickle1 mutations exhibit ASD-like behaviors. To find proteins that interact with PRICKLE1 in the central nervous system, we performed a yeast two-hybrid screen with a human brain cDNA library and isolated a peptide with homology to SYNAPSIN I (SYN1), a protein involved in synaptogenesis, synaptic vesicle formation, and regulation of neurotransmitter release. Endogenous Prickle1 and Syn1 co-localize in neurons and physically interact via the SYN1 region mutated in ASD and epilepsy. Finally, a mutation in PRICKLE1 disrupts its ability to increase the size of dense-core vesicles in PC12 cells. Taken together, these findings suggest PRICKLE1 mutations contribute to ASD by disrupting the interaction with SYN1 and regulation of synaptic vesicles.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - R01 GM093123(United States)

SHANK3 overexpression causes manic-like behaviour with unique pharmacogenetic properties.

  • Han K
  • Nature
  • 2013 Nov 7

Literature context:


Abstract:

Mutations in SHANK3 and large duplications of the region spanning SHANK3 both cause a spectrum of neuropsychiatric disorders, indicating that proper SHANK3 dosage is critical for normal brain function. However, SHANK3 overexpression per se has not been established as a cause of human disorders because 22q13 duplications involve several genes. Here we report that Shank3 transgenic mice modelling a human SHANK3 duplication exhibit manic-like behaviour and seizures consistent with synaptic excitatory/inhibitory imbalance. We also identified two patients with hyperkinetic disorders carrying the smallest SHANK3-spanning duplications reported so far. These findings indicate that SHANK3 overexpression causes a hyperkinetic neuropsychiatric disorder. To probe the mechanism underlying the phenotype, we generated a Shank3 in vivo interactome and found that Shank3 directly interacts with the Arp2/3 complex to increase F-actin levels in Shank3 transgenic mice. The mood-stabilizing drug valproate, but not lithium, rescues the manic-like behaviour of Shank3 transgenic mice raising the possibility that this hyperkinetic disorder has a unique pharmacogenetic profile.

Funding information:
  • Medical Research Council - G0800578(United Kingdom)

Shank3 deficiency induces NMDA receptor hypofunction via an actin-dependent mechanism.

  • Duffney LJ
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2013 Oct 2

Literature context:


Abstract:

Shank3, which encodes a scaffolding protein at glutamatergic synapses, is a genetic risk factor for autism. In this study, we examined the impact of Shank3 deficiency on the NMDA-type glutamate receptor, a key player in cognition and mental illnesses. We found that knockdown of Shank3 with a small interfering RNA (siRNA) caused a significant reduction of NMDAR-mediated ionic or synaptic current, as well as the surface expression of NR1 subunits, in rat cortical cultures. The effect of Shank3 siRNA on NMDAR currents was blocked by an actin stabilizer, and was occluded by an actin destabilizer, suggesting the involvement of actin cytoskeleton. Since actin dynamics is regulated by the GTPase Rac1 and downstream effector p21-activated kinase (PAK), we further examined Shank3 regulation of NMDARs when Rac1 or PAK was manipulated. We found that the reducing effect of Shank3 siRNA on NMDAR currents was mimicked and occluded by specific inhibitors for Rac1 or PAK, and was blocked by constitutively active Rac1 or PAK. Immunocytochemical data showed a strong reduction of F-actin clusters after Shank3 knockdown, which was occluded by a PAK inhibitor. Inhibiting cofilin, the primary downstream target of PAK and a major actin depolymerizing factor, prevented Shank3 siRNA from reducing NMDAR currents and F-actin clusters. Together, these results suggest that Shank3 deficiency induces NMDAR hypofunction by interfering with the Rac1/PAK/cofilin/actin signaling, leading to the loss of NMDAR membrane delivery or stability. It provides a potential mechanism for the role of Shank3 in cognitive deficit in autism.

Funding information:
  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research - FRN 82940(Canada)

Developmental and activity-dependent miRNA expression profiling in primary hippocampal neuron cultures.

  • van Spronsen M
  • PLoS ONE
  • 2013 Oct 7

Literature context:


Abstract:

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are evolutionarily conserved non-coding RNAs of ∼22 nucleotides that regulate gene expression at the level of translation and play vital roles in hippocampal neuron development, function and plasticity. Here, we performed a systematic and in-depth analysis of miRNA expression profiles in cultured hippocampal neurons during development and after induction of neuronal activity. MiRNA profiling of primary hippocampal cultures was carried out using locked nucleic-acid-based miRNA arrays. The expression of 264 different miRNAs was tested in young neurons, at various developmental stages (stage 2-4) and in mature fully differentiated neurons (stage 5) following the induction of neuronal activity using chemical stimulation protocols. We identified 210 miRNAs in mature hippocampal neurons; the expression of most neuronal miRNAs is low at early stages of development and steadily increases during neuronal differentiation. We found a specific subset of 14 miRNAs with reduced expression at stage 3 and showed that sustained expression of these miRNAs stimulates axonal outgrowth. Expression profiling following induction of neuronal activity demonstrates that 51 miRNAs, including miR-134, miR-146, miR-181, miR-185, miR-191 and miR-200a show altered patterns of expression after NMDA receptor-dependent plasticity, and 31 miRNAs, including miR-107, miR-134, miR-470 and miR-546 were upregulated by homeostatic plasticity protocols. Our results indicate that specific miRNA expression profiles correlate with changes in neuronal development and neuronal activity. Identification and characterization of miRNA targets may further elucidate translational control mechanisms involved in hippocampal development, differentiation and activity-depended processes.

Funding information:
  • NIAID NIH HHS - R01 AI052430(United States)

Differential roles of postsynaptic density-93 isoforms in regulating synaptic transmission.

  • Krüger JM
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2013 Sep 25

Literature context:


Abstract:

In the postsynaptic density of glutamatergic synapses, the discs large (DLG)-membrane-associated guanylate kinase (MAGUK) family of scaffolding proteins coordinates a multiplicity of signaling pathways to maintain and regulate synaptic transmission. Postsynaptic density-93 (PSD-93) is the most variable paralog in this family; it exists in six different N-terminal isoforms. Probably because of the structural and functional variability of these isoforms, the synaptic role of PSD-93 remains controversial. To accurately characterize the synaptic role of PSD-93, we quantified the expression of all six isoforms in the mouse hippocampus and examined them individually in hippocampal synapses. Using molecular manipulations, including overexpression, gene knockdown, PSD-93 knock-out mice combined with biochemical assays, and slice electrophysiology both in rat and mice, we demonstrate that PSD-93 is required at different developmental synaptic states to maintain the strength of excitatory synaptic transmission. This strength is differentially regulated by the six isoforms of PSD-93, including regulations of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid (AMPA) receptor-active and inactive synapses, and activity-dependent modulations. Collectively, these results demonstrate that alternative combinations of N-terminal PSD-93 isoforms and DLG-MAGUK paralogs can fine-tune signaling scaffolds to adjust synaptic needs to regulate synaptic transmission.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - P01 GM061354(United States)

MHCI requires MEF2 transcription factors to negatively regulate synapse density during development and in disease.

  • Elmer BM
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2013 Aug 21

Literature context:


Abstract:

Major histocompatibility complex class I (MHCI) molecules negatively regulate cortical connections and are implicated in neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia. However, the mechanisms that mediate these effects are unknown. Here, we report a novel MHCI signaling pathway that requires the myocyte enhancer factor 2 (MEF2) transcription factors. In young rat cortical neurons, MHCI regulates MEF2 in an activity-dependent manner and requires calcineurin-mediated activation of MEF2 to limit synapse density. Manipulating MEF2 alone alters synaptic strength and GluA1 content, but not synapse density, implicating activity-dependent MEF2 activation as critical for MHCI signaling. The MHCI-MEF2 pathway identified here also mediates the effects of a mouse model of maternal immune activation (MIA) on connectivity in offspring. MHCI and MEF2 levels are higher, and synapse density is lower, on neurons from MIA offspring. Most important, dysregulation of MHCI and MEF2 is required for the MIA-induced reduction in neural connectivity. These results identify a previously unknown MHCI-calcineurin-MEF2 signaling pathway that regulates the establishment of cortical connections and mediates synaptic defects caused by MIA, a risk factor for autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - R01 GM078622-01(United States)

Micropatterned substrates coated with neuronal adhesion molecules for high-content study of synapse formation.

  • Czöndör K
  • Nat Commun
  • 2013 Aug 12

Literature context:


Abstract:

Studying the roles of different proteins and the mechanisms involved in synaptogenesis is hindered by the complexity and heterogeneity of synapse types, and by the spatial and temporal unpredictability of spontaneous synapse formation. Here we demonstrate a robust and high-content method to induce selectively presynaptic or postsynaptic structures at controlled locations. Neurons are cultured on micropatterned substrates comprising arrays of micron-scale dots coated with various synaptogenic adhesion molecules. When plated on neurexin-1β-coated micropatterns, neurons expressing neuroligin-1 exhibit specific dendritic organization and selective recruitment of the postsynaptic scaffolding molecule PSD-95. Furthermore, functional AMPA receptors are trapped at neurexin-1β dots, as revealed by live-imaging experiments. In contrast, neurons plated on SynCAM1-coated substrates exhibit strongly patterned axons and selectively assemble functional presynapses. N-cadherin coating, however, is not able to elicit synapses, indicating the specificity of our system. This method opens the way to both fundamental and therapeutic studies of various synaptic systems.

MAP1B-dependent Rac activation is required for AMPA receptor endocytosis during long-term depression.

  • Benoist M
  • EMBO J.
  • 2013 Aug 14

Literature context:


Abstract:

The microtubule-associated protein 1B (MAP1B) plays critical roles in neurite growth and synapse maturation during brain development. This protein is well expressed in the adult brain. However, its function in mature neurons remains unknown. We have used a genetically modified mouse model and shRNA techniques to assess the role of MAP1B at established synapses, bypassing MAP1B functions during neuronal development. Under these conditions, we found that MAP1B deficiency alters synaptic plasticity by specifically impairing long-term depression (LTD) expression. Interestingly, this is due to a failure to trigger AMPA receptor endocytosis and spine shrinkage during LTD. These defects are accompanied by an impaired targeting of the Rac1 activator Tiam1 at synaptic compartments. Accordingly, LTD and AMPA receptor endocytosis are restored in MAP1B-deficient neurons by providing additional Rac1. Therefore, these results indicate that the MAP1B-Tiam1-Rac1 relay is essential for spine structural plasticity and removal of AMPA receptors from synapses during LTD. This work highlights the importance of MAPs as signalling hubs controlling the actin cytoskeleton and receptor trafficking during plasticity in mature neurons.

Funding information:
  • NLM NIH HHS - LM010730-03(United States)

Assembly of synapses: biomimetic assays to control neurexin/neuroligin interactions at the neuronal surface.

  • Mondin M
  • Curr Protoc Neurosci
  • 2013 Jul 15

Literature context:


Abstract:

The role of adhesion molecules in the assembly of synapses in the nervous system is an important issue. To characterize the role of neurexin/neuroligin adhesion complexes in synapse differentiation, various imaging assays can be performed in primary hippocampal cultures. First, to temporally control contact formation, biomimetic assays can be performed using microspheres coated with purified neurexin or with antibody clusters that aggregate neurexin. These models are combined with live fluorescence imaging to study the dynamics of accumulation of post-synaptic components, including scaffolding molecules and glutamate receptors. To demonstrate that AMPA receptors can be recruited to nascent neurexin/neuroligin contacts through lateral diffusion, the mobility of AMPA receptors in the neuronal membrane is monitored by tracking individual quantum dots (QDs) conjugated to antibodies against AMPA receptors. Experiments monitoring the attachment and detachment of Nrx-coated QDs to measure the rates of neurexin/neuroligin interaction can also be performed. Each of these assays is detailed in this unit.

Funding information:
  • PHS HHS - 84620(United States)

Phosphorylation of threonine-19 of PSD-95 by GSK-3β is required for PSD-95 mobilization and long-term depression.

  • Nelson CD
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2013 Jul 17

Literature context:


Abstract:

Activity of glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) is required for long-term depression (LTD) via molecular mechanisms that are incompletely understood. Here, we report that PSD-95, a major scaffold protein of the postsynaptic density (PSD) that promotes synaptic strength, is phosphorylated on threonine-19 (T19) by GSK-3β. In cultured rat hippocampal neurons, phosphorylation of T19 increases rapidly with chemical LTD and is attenuated by pharmacologic or genetic suppression of GSK-3β. In organotypic rat hippocampal slices, we find that a nonphosphorylatable PSD-95 mutant (T19A) tagged with photoactivatable green fluorescent protein (PAGFP) shows enhanced stability in dendritic spines versus wild-type PSD-95, whereas the phosphomimetic mutant (PSD-95-T19D) is more readily dispersed. Further, overexpression of PSD-95-T19A, but not WT-PSD-95, impairs AMPA receptor internalization and the induction of LTD. These data indicate that phosphorylation on T19 by GSK-3β destabilizes PSD-95 within the PSD and is a critical step for AMPA receptor mobilization and LTD.

Funding information:
  • NEI NIH HHS - N01-EY-5-0007(United States)

AGAP3 and Arf6 regulate trafficking of AMPA receptors and synaptic plasticity.

  • Oku Y
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2013 Jul 31

Literature context:


Abstract:

During NMDA receptor-mediated long-term potentiation (LTP), synapses are strengthened by trafficking AMPA receptors to the synapse through a calcium-dependent kinase cascade following activation of NMDA receptors. This process results in a long-lasting increase in synaptic strength that is thought to be a cellular mechanism for learning and memory. Over the past 20 years, many signaling pathways have been shown to be involved in the induction and maintenance of LTP including the MAPK cascade. However, the crucial link between NMDA receptors and the signaling cascades involved in AMPA receptor trafficking during LTP remains elusive. In this study, we aimed to identify and characterize NMDA receptor signaling proteins that link NMDA receptor activation to downstream signaling pathways that lead to trafficking of AMPA receptors. We have identified a novel NMDA receptor interacting signaling protein, AGAP3. AGAP3 contains multiple signaling domains, a GTPase-like domain, a pleckstrin homology domain, and an ArfGAP domain, and exists as a component of the NMDA receptor complex. In addition, we found that AGAP3 regulates NMDA receptor-mediated Ras/ERK and Arf6 signaling pathways during chemically induced LTP in rat primary neuronal cultures. Finally, knocking down AGAP3 expression leads to occlusion of AMPA receptor trafficking during chemically induced LTP. Together, AGAP3 is an essential signaling component of the NMDA receptor complex that links NMDA receptor activation to AMPA receptor trafficking.

Funding information:
  • NHLBI NIH HHS - HL64541(United States)

Dapper antagonist of catenin-1 cooperates with Dishevelled-1 during postsynaptic development in mouse forebrain GABAergic interneurons.

  • Arguello A
  • PLoS ONE
  • 2013 Jul 4

Literature context:


Abstract:

Synaptogenesis has been extensively studied along with dendritic spine development in glutamatergic pyramidal neurons, however synapse development in cortical interneurons, which are largely aspiny, is comparatively less well understood. Dact1, one of 3 paralogous Dact (Dapper/Frodo) family members in mammals, is a scaffold protein implicated in both the Wnt/β-catenin and the Wnt/Planar Cell Polarity pathways. We show here that Dact1 is expressed in immature cortical interneurons. Although Dact1 is first expressed in interneuron precursors during proliferative and migratory stages, constitutive Dact1 mutant mice have no major defects in numbers or migration of these neurons. However, cultured cortical interneurons derived from these mice have reduced numbers of excitatory synapses on their dendrites. We selectively eliminated Dact1 from mouse cortical interneurons using a conditional knock-out strategy with a Dlx-I12b enhancer-Cre allele, and thereby demonstrate a cell-autonomous role for Dact1 during postsynaptic development. Confirming this cell-autonomous role, we show that synapse numbers in Dact1 deficient cortical interneurons are rescued by virally-mediated re-expression of Dact1 specifically targeted to these cells. Synapse numbers in these neurons are also rescued by similarly targeted expression of the Dact1 binding partner Dishevelled-1, and partially rescued by expression of Disrupted in Schizophrenia-1, a synaptic protein genetically implicated in susceptibility to several major mental illnesses. In sum, our results support a novel cell-autonomous postsynaptic role for Dact1, in cooperation with Dishevelled-1 and possibly Disrupted in Schizophrenia-1, in the formation of synapses on cortical interneuron dendrites.

Funding information:
  • PHS HHS - 04-2085(United States)

Kirrel3 is required for the coalescence of vomeronasal sensory neuron axons into glomeruli and for male-male aggression.

  • Prince JE
  • Development
  • 2013 Jun 15

Literature context:


Abstract:

The accessory olfactory system controls social and sexual interactions in mice that are crucial for survival. Vomeronasal sensory neurons (VSNs) form synapses with dendrites of second order neurons in glomeruli of the accessory olfactory bulb (AOB). Axons of VSNs expressing the same vomeronasal receptor coalesce into multiple glomeruli within spatially conserved regions of the AOB. Here we examine the role of the Kirrel family of transmembrane proteins in the coalescence of VSN axons within the AOB. We find that Kirrel2 and Kirrel3 are differentially expressed in subpopulations of VSNs and that their expression is regulated by activity. Although Kirrel3 expression is not required for early axonal guidance events, such as fasciculation of the vomeronasal tract and segregation of apical and basal VSN axons in the AOB, it is necessary for proper coalescence of axons into glomeruli. Ablation of Kirrel3 expression results in disorganization of the glomerular layer of the posterior AOB and formation of fewer, larger glomeruli. Furthermore, Kirrel3(-/-) mice display a loss of male-male aggression in a resident-intruder assay. Taken together, our results indicate that differential expression of Kirrels on vomeronasal axons generates a molecular code that dictates their proper coalescence into glomeruli within the AOB.

Funding information:
  • NHGRI NIH HHS - R01 HG003469(United States)

A local, periactive zone endocytic machinery at photoreceptor synapses in close vicinity to synaptic ribbons.

  • Wahl S
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2013 Jun 19

Literature context:


Abstract:

Photoreceptor ribbon synapses are continuously active synapses with large active zones that contain synaptic ribbons. Synaptic ribbons are anchored to the active zones and are associated with large numbers of synaptic vesicles. The base of the ribbon that is located close to L-type voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels is a hotspot of exocytosis. The continuous exocytosis at the ribbon synapse needs to be balanced by compensatory endocytosis. Recent analyses indicated that vesicle recycling at the synaptic ribbon is also an important determinant of synaptic signaling at the photoreceptor synapse. To get insights into mechanisms of vesicle recycling at the photoreceptor ribbon synapse, we performed super-resolution structured illumination microscopy and immunogold electron microscopy to localize major components of the endocytotic membrane retrieval machinery in the photoreceptor synapse of the mouse retina. We found dynamin, syndapin, amphiphysin, and calcineurin, a regulator of activity-dependent endocytosis, to be highly enriched around the active zone and the synaptic ribbon. We present evidence for two clathrin heavy chain variants in the photoreceptor terminal; one is enriched around the synaptic ribbon, whereas the other is localized in the entry region of the terminal. The focal enrichment of endocytic proteins around the synaptic ribbon is consistent with a focal uptake of endocytic markers at that site. This endocytic activity functionally depends on dynamin. These data propose that the presynaptic periactive zone surrounding the synaptic ribbon complex is a hotspot of endocytosis in photoreceptor ribbon synapses.

Funding information:
  • NIMH NIH HHS - R01 MH067880(United States)

mSYD1A, a mammalian synapse-defective-1 protein, regulates synaptogenic signaling and vesicle docking.

  • Wentzel C
  • Neuron
  • 2013 Jun 19

Literature context:


Abstract:

Structure and function of presynaptic terminals are critical for the transmission and processing of neuronal signals. Trans-synaptic signaling systems instruct the differentiation and function of presynaptic release sites, but their downstream mediators are only beginning to be understood. Here, we identify the intracellular mSYD1A (mouse Synapse-Defective-1A) as a regulator of presynaptic function in mice. mSYD1A forms a complex with presynaptic receptor tyrosine phosphatases and controls tethering of synaptic vesicles at synapses. mSYD1A function relies on an intrinsically disordered domain that interacts with multiple structurally unrelated binding partners, including the active zone protein liprin-α2 and nsec1/munc18-1. In mSYD1A knockout mice, synapses assemble in normal numbers but there is a significant reduction in synaptic vesicle docking at the active zone and an impairment of synaptic transmission. Thus, mSYD1A is a regulator of presynaptic release sites at central synapses.

Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) cause degeneration of cytoskeleton and disrupt synaptic machinery of cultured cortical neurons.

  • Xu F
  • Mol Brain
  • 2013 Jun 19

Literature context:


Abstract:

BACKGROUND: Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs), owing to their effective antimicrobial properties, are being widely used in a broad range of applications. These include, but are not limited to, antibacterial materials, the textile industry, cosmetics, coatings of various household appliances and medical devices. Despite their extensive use, little is known about AgNP safety and toxicity vis-à-vis human and animal health. Recent studies have drawn attention towards potential neurotoxic effects of AgNPs, however, the primary cellular and molecular targets of AgNP action/s remain to be defined. RESULTS: Here we examine the effects of ultra fine scales (20 nm) of AgNPs at various concentrations (1, 5, 10 and 50 μg/ml) on primary rat cortical cell cultures. We found that AgNPs (at 1-50 μg/ml) not only inhibited neurite outgrowth and reduced cell viability of premature neurons and glial cells, but also induced degeneration of neuronal processes of mature neurons. Our immunocytochemistry and confocal microscopy studies further demonstrated that AgNPs induced the loss of cytoskeleton components such as the β-tubulin and filamentous actin (F-actin). AgNPs also dramatically reduced the number of synaptic clusters of the presynaptic vesicle protein synaptophysin, and the postsynaptic receptor density protein PSD-95. Finally, AgNP exposure also resulted in mitochondria dysfunction in rat cortical cells. CONCLUSIONS: Taken together, our data show that AgNPs induce toxicity in neurons, which involves degradation of cytoskeleton components, perturbations of pre- and postsynaptic proteins, and mitochondrial dysfunction leading to cell death. Our study clearly demonstrates the potential detrimental effects of AgNPs on neuronal development and physiological functions and warns against its prolific usage.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - U54 GM074898(United States)
  • NIH HHS - OD007464(United States)

Neuroligin1 drives synaptic and behavioral maturation through intracellular interactions.

  • Hoy JL
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2013 May 29

Literature context:


Abstract:

In vitro studies suggest that the intracellular C terminus of Neuroligin1 (NL1) could play a central role in the maturation of excitatory synapses. However, it is unknown how this activity affects synapses in vivo, and whether it may impact the development of complex behaviors. To determine how NL1 influences the state of glutamatergic synapses in vivo, we compared the synaptic and behavioral phenotypes of mice overexpressing a full-length version of NL1 (NL1FL) with mice overexpressing a version missing part of the intracellular domain (NL1ΔC). We show that overexpression of full-length NL1 yielded an increase in the proportion of synapses with mature characteristics and impaired learning and flexibility. In contrast, the overexpression of NL1ΔC increased the number of excitatory postsynaptic structures and led to enhanced flexibility in mnemonic and social behaviors. Transient overexpression of NL1FL revealed that elevated levels are not necessary to maintain synaptic and behavioral states altered earlier in development. In contrast, overexpression of NL1FL in the fully mature adult was able to impair normal learning behavior after 1 month of expression. These results provide the first evidence that NL1 significantly impacts key developmental processes that permanently shape circuit function and behavior, as well as the function of fully developed neural circuits. Overall, these manipulations of NL1 function illuminate the significance of NL1 intracellular signaling in vivo, and enhance our understanding of the factors that gate the maturation of glutamatergic synapses and complex behavior. This has significant implications for our ability to address disorders such as autism spectrum disorders.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - WT077008(United Kingdom)

PDZ domain-mediated interactions of G protein-coupled receptors with postsynaptic density protein 95: quantitative characterization of interactions.

  • Møller TC
  • PLoS ONE
  • 2013 May 21

Literature context:


Abstract:

G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) constitute the largest family of membrane proteins in the human genome. Their signaling is regulated by scaffold proteins containing PDZ domains, but although these interactions are important for GPCR function, they are still poorly understood. We here present a quantitative characterization of the kinetics and affinity of interactions between GPCRs and one of the best characterized PDZ scaffold proteins, postsynaptic density protein 95 (PSD-95), using fluorescence polarization (FP) and surface plasmon resonance (SPR). By comparing these in vitro findings with colocalization of the full-length proteins in cells and with previous studies, we suggest that the range of relevant interactions might extend to interactions with K i = 450 µM in the in vitro assays. Within this range, we identify novel PSD-95 interactions with the chemokine receptor CXCR2, the neuropeptide Y receptor Y2, and four of the somatostatin receptors (SSTRs). The interaction with SSTR1 was further investigated in mouse hippocampal neurons, where we found a clear colocalization between the endogenously expressed proteins, indicating a potential for further investigation of the role of this interaction. The approach can easily be transferred to other receptors and scaffold proteins and this could help accelerate the discovery and quantitative characterization of GPCR-PDZ interactions.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - NS35224(United States)
  • NLM NIH HHS - 1R01LM010185-01(United States)

Dopamine facilitates dendritic spine formation by cultured striatal medium spiny neurons through both D1 and D2 dopamine receptors.

  • Fasano C
  • Neuropharmacology
  • 2013 Apr 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

Variations of dopamine (DA) levels induced by drugs of abuse or in the context of Parkinson's disease modulate the number of dendritic spines in medium spiny neurons (MSNs) of the striatum, showing that DA plays a major role in the structural plasticity of MSNs. However, little is presently known regarding early spine development in MSNs occurring before the arrival of cortical inputs and in particular about the role of DA and D1 (D1R) and D2 (D2R) DA receptors. A cell culture model reconstituting early cellular interactions between MSNs, intrinsic cholinergic interneurons and DA neurons was used to study the role of DA in spine formation. After 5 or 10 days in vitro, the presence of DA neurons increased the number of immature spine-like protrusions. In MSN monocultures, chronic activation of D1R or D2R also increased the number of spines and spinophilin expression in MSNs, suggesting a direct role for these receptors. In DA-MSN cocultures, chronic blockade of D1R or D2R reduced the number of dendritic spines. Interestingly, the combined activation or blockade of both D1R and D2R failed to elicit more extensive spine formation, suggesting that both receptors act through a mechanism that is not additive. Finally, we found increased ionotropic glutamate receptor responsiveness and miniature excitatory postsynaptic current (EPSC) frequency in DA-MSN co-cultures, in parallel with a higher number of spines containing PSD-95, suggesting that the newly formed spines present functional post-synaptic machinery preparing the MSNs to receive additional glutamatergic contacts. These results represent a first step in the understanding of how dopamine neurons promote the structural plasticity of MSNs during the development of basal ganglia circuits.

Funding information:
  • NIMH NIH HHS - MH32577(United States)

Post-synaptic density-95 (PSD-95) binding capacity of G-protein-coupled receptor 30 (GPR30), an estrogen receptor that can be identified in hippocampal dendritic spines.

  • Akama KT
  • J. Biol. Chem.
  • 2013 Mar 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

The estrogen 17β-estradiol (E2) modulates dendritic spine plasticity in the cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) region of the hippocampus, and GPR30 (G-protein coupled estrogen receptor 1 (GPER1)) is an estrogen-sensitive G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) that is expressed in the mammalian brain and in specific subregions that are responsive to E2, including the hippocampus. The subcellular localization of hippocampal GPR30, however, remains unclear. Here, we demonstrate that GPR30 immunoreactivity is detected in dendritic spines of rat CA1 hippocampal neurons in vivo and that GPR30 protein can be found in rat brain synaptosomes. GPR30 immunoreactivity is identified at the post-synaptic density (PSD) and in the adjacent peri-synaptic zone, and GPR30 can associate with the spine scaffolding protein PSD-95 both in vitro and in vivo. This PSD-95 binding capacity of GPR30 is specific and determined by the receptor C-terminal tail that is both necessary and sufficient for PSD-95 interaction. The interaction with PSD-95 functions to increase GPR30 protein levels residing at the plasma membrane surface. GPR30 associates with the N-terminal tandem pair of PDZ domains in PSD-95, suggesting that PSD-95 may be involved in clustering GPR30 with other receptors in the hippocampus. We demonstrate that GPR30 has the potential to associate with additional post-synaptic GPCRs, including the membrane progestin receptor, the corticotropin releasing hormone receptor, and the 5HT1a serotonin receptor. These data demonstrate that GPR30 is well positioned in the dendritic spine compartment to integrate E2 sensitivity directly onto multiple inputs on synaptic activity and might begin to provide a molecular explanation as to how E2 modulates dendritic spine plasticity.

Funding information:
  • Medical Research Council - G0800578(United Kingdom)

The kinase activity of EphA4 mediates homeostatic scaling-down of synaptic strength via activation of Cdk5.

  • Peng YR
  • Neuropharmacology
  • 2013 Feb 12

Literature context:


Abstract:

Neurons within a network have the ability to homeostatically scale-down their excitatory synaptic strength under conditions of persistent neuronal activity elevation, a process pivotal to neural circuit stability. How this homeostatic regulation is achieved at the molecular level in developing neural circuits, which face gradually elevated neuronal activity as part of circuit wiring, is not well-understood. Using dissociated hippocampal neuronal cultures, we identified a critical and cell autonomous role for the receptor tyrosine kinase EphA4 in mediating activity-induced homeostatic down-regulation of excitatory synaptic strength. Reducing the endogenous level of EphA4 in individual neurons by RNAi effectively blocked activity-induced scaling-down of excitatory synaptic strength, while co-transfection of RNAi resistant EphA4 rescued this effect. Furthermore, interfering with EphA4 forward signaling using EphA4-Fc blocked activity-induced homeostatic synaptic scaling-down, while direct activation of EphA4 with its ligand EphrinA1 weakened excitatory synaptic strength. Up- or down-regulating EphA4 function in individual neurons also did not affect the density of excitatory synapses. The kinase activities of EphA4 and its downstream effector Cdk5 were both required for homeostatic synaptic scaling, as overexpression of EphA4 with constitutively active kinase activity reduced excitatory synaptic strength, while interfering with either the kinase activity of EphA4 or Cdk5 blocked activity-induced synaptic scaling. Consistently, the activities of EphA4 and Cdk5 increased significantly during global and persistent activity elevation. Together, our work demonstrated that the kinase activity of EphA4, via activation of downstream Cdk5 activity, mediates the scaling-down of excitatory synaptic strength under conditions of global activity elevation.

Peroxisome proliferators reduce spatial memory impairment, synaptic failure, and neurodegeneration in brains of a double transgenic mice model of Alzheimer's disease.

  • Inestrosa NC
  • J. Alzheimers Dis.
  • 2013 Jan 23

Literature context:


Abstract:

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a progressive deterioration of cognitive abilities, accumulation of the amyloid-β peptide (Aβ), increase of oxidative stress, and synaptic alterations. The scavenging of reactive oxygen species through their matrix enzyme catalase is one of the most recognized functions of peroxisomes. The induction of peroxisome proliferation is attained through different mechanisms by a set of structurally diverse molecules called peroxisome proliferators. In the present work, a double transgenic mouse model of AD that co-expresses a mutant human amyloid-β protein precursor (AβPPswe) and presenilin 1 without exon 9 (PS1dE9) was utilized in order to assess the effect of peroxisomal proliferation on Aβ neurotoxicity in vivo. Mice were tested for spatial memory and their brains analyzed by cytochemical, electrophysiological, and biochemical methods. We report here that peroxisomal proliferation significantly reduces (i) memory impairment, found in this model of AD; (ii) Aβ burden and plaque-associated acetylcholinesterase activity; (iii) neuroinflammation, measured by the extent of astrogliosis and microgliosis; and (iv) the decrease in postsynaptic proteins, while promoting synaptic plasticity in the form of long-term potentiation. We concluded that peroxisomal proliferation reduces various AD neuropathological markers and peroxisome proliferators may be considered as potential therapeutic agents against the disease.

Funding information:
  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research - JNM-90959(Canada)

Impaired synaptic clustering of postsynaptic density proteins and altered signal transmission in hippocampal neurons, and disrupted learning behavior in PDZ1 and PDZ2 ligand binding-deficient PSD-95 knockin mice.

  • Nagura H
  • Mol Brain
  • 2012 Dec 26

Literature context:


Abstract:

BACKGROUND: Postsynaptic density (PSD)-95-like membrane-associated guanylate kinases (PSD-MAGUKs) are scaffold proteins in PSDs that cluster signaling molecules near NMDA receptors. PSD-MAGUKs share a common domain structure, including three PDZ (PDZ1/2/3) domains in their N-terminus. While multiple domains enable the PSD-MAGUKs to bind various ligands, the contribution of each PDZ domain to synaptic organization and function is not fully understood. Here, we focused on the PDZ1/2 domains of PSD-95 that bind NMDA-type receptors, and studied the specific roles of the ligand binding of these domains in the assembly of PSD proteins, synaptic properties of hippocampal neurons, and behavior, using ligand binding-deficient PSD-95 cDNA knockin (KI) mice. RESULTS: The KI mice showed decreased accumulation of mutant PSD-95, PSD-93 and AMPA receptor subunits in the PSD fraction of the hippocampus. In the hippocampal CA1 region of young KI mice, basal synaptic efficacy was reduced and long-term potentiation (LTP) was enhanced with intact long-term depression. In adult KI mice, there was no significant change in the magnitude of LTP in CA1, but robustly enhanced LTP was induced at the medial perforant path-dentate gyrus synapses, suggesting that PSD-95 has an age- and subregion-dependent role. In a battery of behavioral tests, KI mice showed markedly abnormal anxiety-like behavior, impaired spatial reference and working memory, and impaired remote memory and pattern separation in fear conditioning test. CONCLUSIONS: These findings reveal that PSD-95 including its ligand binding of the PDZ1/2 domains controls the synaptic clustering of PSD-MAGUKs and AMPA receptors, which may have an essential role in regulating hippocampal synaptic transmission, plasticity, and hippocampus-dependent behavior.

Funding information:
  • PHS HHS - PA-05-015(United States)

Developmental up-regulation of vesicular glutamate transporter-1 promotes neocortical presynaptic terminal development.

  • Berry CT
  • PLoS ONE
  • 2012 Dec 11

Literature context:


Abstract:

Presynaptic terminal formation is a complex process that requires assembly of proteins responsible for synaptic transmission at sites of axo-dendritic contact. Accumulation of presynaptic proteins at developing terminals is facilitated by glutamate receptor activation. Glutamate is loaded into synaptic vesicles for release via the vesicular glutamate transporters VGLUT1 and VGLUT2. During postnatal development there is a switch from predominantly VGLUT2 expression to high VGLUT1 and low VGLUT2, raising the question of whether the developmental increase in VGLUT1 is important for presynaptic development. Here, we addressed this question using confocal microscopy and quantitative immunocytochemistry in primary cultures of rat neocortical neurons. First, in order to understand the extent to which the developmental switch from VGLUT2 to VGLUT1 occurs through an increase in VGLUT1 at individual presynaptic terminals or through addition of VGLUT1-positive presynaptic terminals, we examined the spatio-temporal dynamics of VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 expression. Between 5 and 12 days in culture, the percentage of presynaptic terminals that expressed VGLUT1 increased during synapse formation, as did expression of VGLUT1 at individual terminals. A subset of VGLUT1-positive terminals also expressed VGLUT2, which decreased at these terminals. At individual terminals, the increase in VGLUT1 correlated with greater accumulation of other synaptic vesicle proteins, such as synapsin and synaptophysin. When the developmental increase in VGLUT1 was prevented using VGLUT1-shRNA, the density of presynaptic terminals and accumulation of synapsin and synaptophysin at terminals were decreased. Since VGLUT1 knock-down was limited to a small number of neurons, the observed effects were cell-autonomous and independent of changes in overall network activity. These results demonstrate that up-regulation of VGLUT1 is important for development of presynaptic terminals in the cortex.

Funding information:
  • PHS HHS - NIH-NINDS R37-31146(United States)

PSD-95 expression controls L-DOPA dyskinesia through dopamine D1 receptor trafficking.

  • Porras G
  • J. Clin. Invest.
  • 2012 Nov 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia (LID), a detrimental consequence of dopamine replacement therapy for Parkinson's disease, is associated with an alteration in dopamine D1 receptor (D1R) and glutamate receptor interactions. We hypothesized that the synaptic scaffolding protein PSD-95 plays a pivotal role in this process, as it interacts with D1R, regulates its trafficking and function, and is overexpressed in LID. Here, we demonstrate in rat and macaque models that disrupting the interaction between D1R and PSD-95 in the striatum reduces LID development and severity. Single quantum dot imaging revealed that this benefit was achieved primarily by destabilizing D1R localization, via increased lateral diffusion followed by increased internalization and diminished surface expression. These findings indicate that altering D1R trafficking via synapse-associated scaffolding proteins may be useful in the treatment of dyskinesia in Parkinson's patients.

Funding information:
  • NIAAA NIH HHS - AA05524(United States)

DSCAM contributes to dendrite arborization and spine formation in the developing cerebral cortex.

  • Maynard KR
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2012 Nov 21

Literature context:


Abstract:

Down syndrome cell adhesion molecule, or DSCAM, has been implicated in many neurodevelopmental processes including axon guidance, dendrite arborization, and synapse formation. Here we show that DSCAM plays an important role in regulating the morphogenesis of cortical pyramidal neurons in the mouse. We report that DSCAM expression is developmentally regulated and localizes to synaptic plasma membranes during a time of robust cortical dendrite arborization and spine formation. Analysis of mice that carry a spontaneous mutation in DSCAM (DSCAM(del17)) revealed gross morphological changes in brain size and shape in addition to subtle changes in cortical organization, volume, and lamination. Early postnatal mutant mice displayed a transient decrease in cortical thickness, but these reductions could not be attributed to changes in neuron production or cell death. DSCAM(del17) mutants showed temporary impairments in the branching of layer V pyramidal neuron dendrites at P10 and P17 that recovered to normal by adulthood. Defects in DSCAM(del17) dendrite branching correlated with a temporal increase in apical branch spine density and lasting changes in spine morphology. At P15 and P42, mutant mice displayed a decrease in the percentage of large, stable spines and an increase in the percentage of small, immature spines. Together, our findings suggest that DSCAM contributes to pyramidal neuron morphogenesis by regulating dendrite arborization and spine formation during cortical circuit development.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - GM065372(United States)

Dimerization of postsynaptic neuroligin drives synaptic assembly via transsynaptic clustering of neurexin.

  • Shipman SL
  • Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
  • 2012 Nov 20

Literature context:


Abstract:

The transsynaptic complex of neuroligin (NLGN) and neurexin forms a physical connection between pre- and postsynaptic neurons that occurs early in the course of new synapse assembly. Both neuroligin and neurexin have, indeed, been proposed to exhibit active, instructive roles in the formation of synapses. However, the process by which these instructive roles play out during synaptogenesis is not well understood. Here, we examine one aspect of postsynaptic neuroligin with regard to its synaptogenic properties: its basal state as a constitutive dimer. We show that dimerization is required for the synaptogenic properties of neuroligin and likely serves to induce presynaptic differentiation via a transsynaptic clustering of neurexin. Further, we introduce chemically inducible, exogenous dimerization domains to the neuroligin molecule, effectively bestowing chemical control of neuroligin dimerization. This allows us to identify the acute requirements of neuroligin dimerization by chemically manipulating the monomeric-to-dimeric conversion of neuroligin. Based on the results of the inducible dimerization experiments, we propose a model in which dimerized neuroligin induces the mechanical clustering of presynaptic molecules as part of a requisite step in the coordinated assembly of a chemical synapse.

Funding information:
  • NIMH NIH HHS - 5R01MH070370(United States)

AKAP150-anchored calcineurin regulates synaptic plasticity by limiting synaptic incorporation of Ca2+-permeable AMPA receptors.

  • Sanderson JL
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2012 Oct 24

Literature context:


Abstract:

AMPA receptors (AMPARs) are tetrameric ion channels assembled from GluA1-GluA4 subunits that mediate the majority of fast excitatory synaptic transmission in the brain. In the hippocampus, most synaptic AMPARs are composed of GluA1/2 or GluA2/3 with the GluA2 subunit preventing Ca(2+) influx. However, a small number of Ca(2+)-permeable GluA1 homomeric receptors reside in extrasynaptic locations where they can be rapidly recruited to synapses during synaptic plasticity. Phosphorylation of GluA1 S845 by the cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) primes extrasynaptic receptors for synaptic insertion in response to NMDA receptor Ca(2+) signaling during long-term potentiation (LTP), while phosphatases dephosphorylate S845 and remove synaptic and extrasynaptic GluA1 during long-term depression (LTD). PKA and the Ca(2+)-activated phosphatase calcineurin (CaN) are targeted to GluA1 through binding to A-kinase anchoring protein 150 (AKAP150) in a complex with PSD-95, but we do not understand how the opposing activities of these enzymes are balanced to control plasticity. Here, we generated AKAP150ΔPIX knock-in mice to selectively disrupt CaN anchoring in vivo. We found that AKAP150ΔPIX mice lack LTD but express enhanced LTP at CA1 synapses. Accordingly, basal GluA1 S845 phosphorylation is elevated in AKAP150ΔPIX hippocampus, and LTD-induced dephosphorylation and removal of GluA1, AKAP150, and PSD-95 from synapses are impaired. In addition, basal synaptic activity of GluA2-lacking AMPARs is increased in AKAP150ΔPIX mice and pharmacologic antagonism of these receptors restores normal LTD and inhibits the enhanced LTP. Thus, AKAP150-anchored CaN opposes PKA phosphorylation of GluA1 to restrict synaptic incorporation of Ca(2+)-permeable AMPARs both basally and during LTP and LTD.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - GM088076(United States)

Afadin is required for maintenance of dendritic structure and excitatory tone.

  • Srivastava DP
  • J. Biol. Chem.
  • 2012 Oct 19

Literature context:


Abstract:

The dendritic field of a neuron, which is determined by both dendritic architecture and synaptic strength, defines the synaptic input of a cell. Once established, a neuron's dendritic field is thought to remain relatively stable throughout a cell's lifetime. Perturbations in a dendritic structure or excitatory tone of a cell and thus its dendritic field are cellular alterations thought to be correlated with a number of psychiatric disorders. Although several proteins are known to regulate the development of dendritic arborization, much less is known about the mechanisms that maintain dendritic morphology and synaptic strength. In this study, we find that afadin, a component of N-cadherin·β-catenin·α-N-catenin adhesion complexes, is required for the maintenance of established dendritic arborization and synapse number. We further demonstrate that afadin directly interacts with AMPA receptors and that loss of this protein reduces the surface expression of GluA1- and GluA2-AMPA receptor subunits. Collectively, these data suggest that afadin is required for the maintenance of dendritic structure and excitatory tone.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - 085532(United Kingdom)

Chronic ethanol up-regulates the synaptic expression of the nuclear translational regulatory protein AIDA-1 in primary hippocampal neurons.

  • Mulholland PJ
  • Alcohol
  • 2012 Sep 3

Literature context:


Abstract:

Recent studies have identified synaptic proteins that undergo synapse-to-nucleus translocation in response to neuronal activity that modulate protein synthesis. One such translational regulatory protein of the postsynaptic density (PSD) is AIDA-1d, which binds to PSD-95 via its C-terminus. Activation of synaptic NMDA receptors induces the cleavage of AIDA-1d, and the N-terminus is then shuttled to nuclear Cajal bodies where it plays a role in regulating global protein synthesis. Chronic ethanol exposure has been shown to increase the synaptic clustering of NMDA receptors and PSD-95. Here, we tested the hypothesis that AIDA-1d regulates chronic ethanol-induced increases in synaptic NMDA receptor expression. As reported, we found that AIDA-1 was highly enriched in dendritic spines and co-localized with PSD-95. Acute NMDA treatment increased AIDA-1 colocalization with p80 coilin, a marker of Cajal bodies. Chronic treatment (4 day) of cultures with ethanol (25-100 mM) or with the NMDA receptor antagonist AP-V (50 μM) enhanced the clustering of AIDA-1 at synaptic sites. However, chronic ethanol treatment (50 mM) in the presence of the NMDA receptor agonist NMDA (2.5 μM) prevented this increase. Surprisingly, PSD-95 did not seem to play a role in the synaptic distribution of AIDA-1 as this distribution was not affected by declustering PSD-95 from synapses in response to inhibition of palmitoylation. We found that lentiviral knockdown of AIDA-1d did not affect protein expression levels of NMDA receptor subunits GluN1, GluN1 C2', or GluN2B. The results of this study demonstrate that synaptic AIDA-1 expression is enhanced by chronic ethanol exposure that can be prevented by concurrent stimulation of NMDA receptors. In addition, we found that the association of AIDA-1 with PSD-95 is not required for its localization to the PSD. Moreover, we found that AIDA-1 does not regulate protein expression levels or alternative splicing of the GluN1 subunit of NMDA receptors.

Funding information:
  • NIDA NIH HHS - R01DA030304(United States)

Calcyon forms a novel ternary complex with dopamine D1 receptor through PSD-95 protein and plays a role in dopamine receptor internalization.

  • Ha CM
  • J. Biol. Chem.
  • 2012 Sep 14

Literature context:


Abstract:

Calcyon, once known for interacting directly with the dopamine D(1) receptor (D(1)DR), is implicated in various neuropsychiatric disorders including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Although its direct interaction with D(1)DR has been shown to be misinterpreted, it still plays important roles in D(1)DR signaling. Here, we found that calcyon interacts with the PSD-95 and subsequently forms a ternary complex with D(1)DR through PSD-95. Calcyon is phosphorylated on Ser-169 by the PKC activator phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate or by the D(1)DR agonist SKF-81297, and its phosphorylation increases its association with PSD-95 and recruitment to the cell surface. Interestingly, the internalization of D(1)DR at the cell surface was enhanced by phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate and SKF-81297 in the presence of calcyon, but not in the presence of its S169A phospho-deficient mutant, suggesting that the phosphorylation of calcyon and the internalization of the surface D(1)DR are tightly correlated. Our results suggest that calcyon regulates D(1)DR trafficking by forming a ternary complex with D(1)DR through PSD-95 and thus possibly linking glutamatergic and dopamine receptor signalings. This also raises the possibility that a novel ternary complex could represent a potential therapeutic target for the modulation of related neuropsychiatric disorders.

Funding information:
  • NHGRI NIH HHS - R01HG006841(United States)
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - R01 GM098461(United States)

Preso1 dynamically regulates group I metabotropic glutamate receptors.

  • Hu JH
  • Nat. Neurosci.
  • 2012 Sep 17

Literature context:


Abstract:

Group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs), including mGluR1 and mGluR5, are G protein–coupled receptors (GPCRs) that are expressed at excitatory synapses in brain and spinal cord. GPCRs are often negatively regulated by specific G protein–coupled receptor kinases and subsequent binding of arrestin-like molecules. Here we demonstrate an alternative mechanism in which group I mGluRs are negatively regulated by proline-directed kinases that phosphorylate the binding site for the adaptor protein Homer, and thereby enhance mGluR–Homer binding to reduce signaling. This mechanism is dependent on a multidomain scaffolding protein, Preso1, that binds mGluR, Homer and proline-directed kinases and that is required for their phosphorylation of mGluR at the Homer binding site. Genetic ablation of Preso1 prevents dynamic phosphorylation of mGluR5, and Preso1(−/−) mice exhibit sustained, mGluR5-dependent inflammatory pain that is linked to enhanced mGluR signaling. Preso1 creates a microdomain for proline-directed kinases with broad substrate specificity to phosphorylate mGluR and to mediate negative regulation.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - R01 NS069861(United States)

CDKL5 ensures excitatory synapse stability by reinforcing NGL-1-PSD95 interaction in the postsynaptic compartment and is impaired in patient iPSC-derived neurons.

  • Ricciardi S
  • Nat. Cell Biol.
  • 2012 Sep 5

Literature context:


Abstract:

Mutations of the cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) and netrin-G1 (NTNG1) genes cause a severe neurodevelopmental disorder with clinical features that are closely related to Rett syndrome, including intellectual disability, early-onset intractable epilepsy and autism. We report here that CDKL5 is localized at excitatory synapses and contributes to correct dendritic spine structure and synapse activity. To exert this role, CDKL5 binds and phosphorylates the cell adhesion molecule NGL-1. This phosphorylation event ensures a stable association between NGL-1 and PSD95. Accordingly, phospho-mutant NGL-1 is unable to induce synaptic contacts whereas its phospho-mimetic form binds PSD95 more efficiently and partially rescues the CDKL5-specific spine defects. Interestingly, similarly to rodent neurons, iPSC-derived neurons from patients with CDKL5 mutations exhibit aberrant dendritic spines, thus suggesting a common function of CDKL5 in mice and humans.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - 076113(United Kingdom)

Signaling defects in iPSC-derived fragile X premutation neurons.

  • Liu J
  • Hum. Mol. Genet.
  • 2012 Sep 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

Fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) is a leading monogenic neurodegenerative disorder affecting premutation carriers of the fragile X (FMR1) gene. To investigate the underlying cellular neuropathology, we produced induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons from isogenic subclones of primary fibroblasts of a female premutation carrier, with each subclone bearing exclusively either the normal or the expanded (premutation) form of the FMR1 gene as the active allele. We show that neurons harboring the stably-active, expanded allele (EX-Xa) have reduced postsynaptic density protein 95 protein expression, reduced synaptic puncta density and reduced neurite length. Importantly, such neurons are also functionally abnormal, with calcium transients of higher amplitude and increased frequency than for neurons harboring the normal-active allele. Moreover, a sustained calcium elevation was found in the EX-Xa neurons after glutamate application. By excluding the individual genetic background variation, we have demonstrated neuronal phenotypes directly linked to the FMR1 premutation. Our approach represents a unique isogenic, X-chromosomal epigenetic model to aid the development of targeted therapeutics for FXTAS, and more broadly as a model for the study of common neurodevelopmental (e.g. autism) and neurodegenerative (e.g. Parkinsonism, dementias) disorders.

Funding information:
  • NCRR NIH HHS - R24RR024790(United States)

The p21-activated kinase PAK3 forms heterodimers with PAK1 in brain implementing trans-regulation of PAK3 activity.

  • Combeau G
  • J. Biol. Chem.
  • 2012 Aug 31

Literature context:


Abstract:

p21-activated kinase 1 (PAK1) and PAK3 belong to group I of the PAK family and control cell movement and division. They also regulate dendritic spine formation and maturation in the brain, and play a role in synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity. PAK3, in particular, is known for its implication in X-linked intellectual disability. The pak3 gene is expressed in neurons as a GTPase-regulated PAK3a protein and also as three splice variants which display constitutive kinase activity. PAK1 regulation is based on its homodimerization, forming an inactive complex. Here, we analyze the PAK3 capacity to dimerize and show that although PAK3a is able to homodimerize, it is more likely to form heterodimeric complexes with PAK1. We further show that two intellectual disability mutations impair dimerization with PAK1. The b and c inserts present in the regulatory domain of PAK3 splice variants decrease the dimerization but retain the capacity to form heterodimers with PAK1. PAK1 and PAK3 are co-expressed in neurons, are colocalized within dendritic spines, co-purify with post-synaptic densities, and co-immunoprecipitate in brain lysates. Using kinase assays, we demonstrate that PAK1 inhibits the activity of PAK3a but not of the splice variant PAK3b in a trans-regulatory manner. Altogether, these results show that PAK3 and PAK1 signaling may be coordinated by heterodimerization.

Funding information:
  • NCRR NIH HHS - 3P41RR024851-02S1(United States)
  • NICHD NIH HHS - R01 HD056503(United States)

Molecular and functional interaction between protocadherin-γC5 and GABAA receptors.

  • Li Y
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2012 Aug 22

Literature context:


Abstract:

We have found that the γ2 subunit of the GABA(A) receptor (γ2-GABA(A)R) specifically interacts with protocadherin-γC5 (Pcdh-γC5) in the rat brain. The interaction occurs between the large intracellular loop of the γ2-GABA(A)R and the cytoplasmic domain of Pcdh-γC5. In brain extracts, Pcdh-γC5 coimmunoprecipitates with GABA(A)Rs. In cotransfected HEK293 cells, Pcdh-γC5 promotes the transfer of γ2-GABA(A)R to the cell surface. We have previously shown that, in cultured hippocampal neurons, endogenous Pcdh-γC5 forms clusters, some of which associate with GABAergic synapses. Overexpression of Pcdh-γC5 in hippocampal neurons increases the density of γ2-GABA(A)R clusters but has no significant effect on the number of GABAergic contacts that these neurons receive, indicating that Pcdh-γC5 is not synaptogenic. Deletion of the cytoplasmic domain of Pcdh-γC5 enhanced its surface expression but decreased the association with both γ2-GABA(A)R clusters and presynaptic GABAergic contacts. Cultured hippocampal neurons from the Pcdh-γ triple C-type isoform knock-out (TCKO) mouse (Pcdhg(tcko/tcko)) showed plenty of GABAergic synaptic contacts, although their density was reduced compared with sister cultures from wild-type and heterozygous mice. Knocking down Pcdh-γC5 expression with shRNA decreased γ2-GABA(A)R cluster density and GABAergic innervation. The results indicate that, although Pcdh-γC5 is not essential for GABAergic synapse formation or GABA(A)R clustering, (1) Pcdh-γC5 regulates the surface expression of GABA(A)Rs via cis-cytoplasmic interaction with γ2-GABA(A)R, and (2) Pcdh-γC5 plays a role in the stabilization and maintenance of some GABAergic synapses.

Funding information:
  • NCI NIH HHS - CA113001(United States)

Social, communication, and cortical structural impairments in Epac2-deficient mice.

  • Srivastava DP
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2012 Aug 22

Literature context:


Abstract:

Deficits in social and communication behaviors are common features of a number of neurodevelopmental disorders. However, the molecular and cellular substrates of these higher order brain functions are not well understood. Here we report that specific alterations in social and communication behaviors in mice occur as a result of loss of the EPAC2 gene, which encodes a protein kinase A-independent cAMP target. Epac2-deficient mice exhibited robust deficits in social interactions and ultrasonic vocalizations, but displayed normal olfaction, working and reference memory, motor abilities, anxiety, and repetitive behaviors. Epac2-deficient mice displayed abnormal columnar organization in the anterior cingulate cortex, a region implicated in social behavior in humans, but not in somatosensory cortex. In vivo two-photon imaging revealed reduced dendritic spine motility and density on cortical neurons in Epac2-deficient mice, indicating deficits at the synaptic level. Together, these findings provide novel insight into the molecular and cellular substrates of social and communication behavior.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - R01-GM083871(United States)

MeCP2 is critical for maintaining mature neuronal networks and global brain anatomy during late stages of postnatal brain development and in the mature adult brain.

  • Nguyen MV
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2012 Jul 18

Literature context:


Abstract:

Mutations in the X-linked gene, methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (Mecp2), underlie a wide range of neuropsychiatric disorders, most commonly, Rett Syndrome (RTT), a severe autism spectrum disorder that affects approximately one in 10,000 female live births. Because mutations in the Mecp2 gene occur in the germ cells with onset of neurological symptoms occurring in early childhood, the role of MeCP2 has been ascribed to brain maturation at a specific developmental window. Here, we show similar kinetics of onset and progression of RTT-like symptoms in mice, including lethality, if MeCP2 is removed postnatally during the developmental stage that coincides with RTT onset, or adult stage. For the first time, we show that brains that lose MeCP2 at these two different stages are actively shrinking, resulting in higher than normal neuronal cell density. Furthermore, we show that mature dendritic arbors of pyramidal neurons are severely retracted and dendritic spine density is dramatically reduced. In addition, hippocampal astrocytes have significantly less complex ramified processes. These changes accompany a striking reduction in the levels of several synaptic proteins, including CaMKII α/β, AMPA, and NMDA receptors, and the synaptic vesicle proteins Vglut and Synapsin, which represent critical modifiers of synaptic function and dendritic arbor structure. Importantly, the mRNA levels of these synaptic proteins remains unchanged, suggesting that MeCP2 likely regulates these synaptic proteins post-transcriptionally, directly or indirectly. Our data suggest a crucial role for MeCP2 in post-transcriptional regulation of critical synaptic proteins involved in maintaining mature neuronal networks during late stages of postnatal brain development.

Funding information:
  • PHS HHS - 107-360(United States)

Early formation of GABAergic synapses governs the development of adult-born neurons in the olfactory bulb.

  • Pallotto M
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2012 Jun 27

Literature context:


Abstract:

In mammals, olfactory bulb granule cells (GCs) are generated throughout life in the subventricular zone. GABAergic inputs onto newborn neurons likely regulate their maturation, but the details of this process remain still elusive. Here, we investigated the differentiation, synaptic integration, and survival of adult-born GCs when their afferent GABAergic inputs are challenged by conditional gene targeting. Migrating GC precursors were targeted with Cre-eGFP-expressing lentiviral vectors in mice with a floxed gene encoding the GABA(A) receptor α2-subunit (i.e., Gabra2). Ablation of the α2-subunit did not affect GC survival but dramatically delayed their maturation. We found a reduction in postsynaptic α2-subunit and gephyrin clusters accompanied by a decrease in the frequency and amplitude of GABAergic postsynaptic currents beginning ∼14 d post-injection (dpi). In addition, mutant cells exhibited altered dendritic branching and spine density. Spine loss appeared with mislocation of glutamatergic synapses on dendritic shafts and a reduction of spontaneous glutamatergic postsynaptic currents, underscoring the relevance of afferent GABAergic transmission for a proper synaptic integration of newborn GCs. To test the role of GABAergic signaling during much early stages of GC maturation, we used a genetic strategy to selectively inactivate Gabra2 in precursor cells of the subventricular zone. In these mice, labeling of newborn GCs with eGFP lentiviruses revealed similar morphological alterations as seen on delayed Gabra2 inactivation in migrating neuroblasts, with reduced dendritic branching and spine density at 7 dpi. Collectively, these results emphasize the critical role of GABAergic synaptic signaling for structural maturation of adult-born GCs and formation of glutamatergic synapses.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - GM089662(United States)

WIP is a negative regulator of neuronal maturation and synaptic activity.

  • Franco A
  • Cereb. Cortex
  • 2012 May 18

Literature context:


Abstract:

Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASP) -interacting protein (WIP) is an actin-binding protein involved in the regulation of actin polymerization in cells, such as fibroblasts and lymphocytes. Despite its recognized function in non-neuronal cells, the role of WIP in the central nervous system has not been examined previously. We used WIP-deficient mice to examine WIP function both in vivo and in vitro. We report here that WIP(-)(/-) hippocampal neurons exhibit enlargement of somas as well as overgrowth of neuritic and dendritic branches that are more evident in early developmental stages. Dendritic arborization and synaptogenesis, which includes generation of postsynaptic dendritic spines, are actin-dependent processes that occur in parallel at later stages. WIP deficiency also increases the amplitude and frequency of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents, suggesting that WIP(-)(/-) neurons have more mature synapses than wild-type neurons. These findings reveal WIP as a previously unreported regulator of neuronal maturation and synaptic activity.

Funding information:
  • NIDDK NIH HHS - R24 DK090962(United States)

Implication of perturbed axoglial apparatus in early pediatric multiple sclerosis.

  • Dhaunchak AS
  • Ann. Neurol.
  • 2012 May 23

Literature context:


Abstract:

Cerebrospinal fluid samples collected from children during initial presentation of central nervous system inflammation, who may or may not subsequently be diagnosed as having multiple sclerosis (MS), were subjected to large-scale proteomics screening. Unexpectedly, major compact myelin membrane proteins typically implicated in MS were not detected. However, multiple molecules that localize to the node of Ranvier and the surrounding axoglial apparatus membrane were implicated, indicating perturbed axon-glial interactions in those children destined for diagnosis of MS.

Funding information:
  • CIHR - 232519(Canada)
  • Medical Research Council - G0501898(United Kingdom)

Palmitoylation of A-kinase anchoring protein 79/150 regulates dendritic endosomal targeting and synaptic plasticity mechanisms.

  • Keith DJ
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2012 May 23

Literature context:


Abstract:

NMDA receptor-dependent long-term potentiation (LTP) and depression (LTD) are forms of synaptic plasticity underlying learning and memory that are expressed through increases and decreases, respectively, in dendritic spine size and AMPA receptor (AMPAR) phosphorylation and postsynaptic localization. The A-kinase anchoring protein 79/150 (AKAP79/150) signaling scaffold regulates AMPAR phosphorylation, channel activity, and endosomal trafficking associated with LTP and LTD. AKAP79/150 is targeted to dendritic spine plasma membranes by an N-terminal polybasic domain that binds phosphoinositide lipids, F-actin, and cadherin cell adhesion molecules. However, we do not understand how regulation of AKAP targeting controls AMPAR endosomal trafficking. Here, we report that palmitoylation of the AKAP N-terminal polybasic domain targets it to postsynaptic lipid rafts and dendritic recycling endosomes. AKAP palmitoylation was regulated by seizure activity in vivo and LTP/LTD plasticity-inducing stimuli in cultured rat hippocampal neurons. With chemical LTP induction, we observed AKAP79 dendritic spine recruitment that required palmityolation and Rab11-regulated endosome recycling coincident with spine enlargement and AMPAR surface delivery. Importantly, a palmitoylation-deficient AKAP79 mutant impaired regulation of spine size, endosome recycling, AMPAR trafficking, and synaptic potentiation. These findings emphasize the emerging importance of palmitoylation in controlling synaptic function and reveal novel roles for the AKAP79/150 signaling complex in dendritic endosomes.

Funding information:
  • NCRR NIH HHS - P40-RR-17072(United States)

Presubiculum layer III conveys retrosplenial input to the medial entorhinal cortex.

  • Kononenko NL
  • Hippocampus
  • 2012 Apr 22

Literature context:


Abstract:

Navigation is mediated by a network of brain areas, and research has focused on the head-direction system in the presubiculum (PrS), the grid cell containing medial entorhinal cortex (EC) (MEC) and place cells in the hippocampus. Less research addressed the interactions of the retrosplenial cortex (RSC) and the navigational system, although it is well established that damage to the RSC leads to navigational deficits. We previously showed that RSC provides a dense input to deep layers of MEC and to superficial layers of PrS. In this study we use confocal microscopical analysis and show that the dense projection from the caudal part of the ventral retrosplenial granular cortex targets neurons in Layer III of PrS, which provide input to superficial layers of MEC. Our high resolution anatomical data indicate that sparsely spiny pyramidal neurons in Layer III of PrS that originate projections to Layer III of MEC are the main target of these retrosplenial projections. Retrosplenial axonal boutons were found to equally contact spines and shafts of basal dendrites in Layer III, but contacts on shafts are more prominent close to the soma, indicating the potential for efficient synaptic transfer. These observations suggest that neurons in Layer III of PrS have an important role in mediating RSC contributions to navigation.

Funding information:
  • NIDA NIH HHS - R21 DA030118(United States)
  • NIDDK NIH HHS - R01 DK079005-04(United States)

P38 MAPK is involved in enhanced NMDA receptor-dependent excitotoxicity in YAC transgenic mouse model of Huntington disease.

  • Fan J
  • Neurobiol. Dis.
  • 2012 Mar 9

Literature context:


Abstract:

Huntington disease (HD) is a dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disease caused by a polyglutamine (polyQ) expansion in the protein huntingtin (htt). Previous studies have shown enhanced N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA)-induced excitotoxicity in neuronal models of HD, mediated in part by increased NMDA receptor (NMDAR) GluN2B subunit binding with the postsynaptic density protein-95 (PSD-95). In cultured hippocampal neurons, the NMDAR-activated p38 Mitogen-activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) death pathway is disrupted by a peptide (Tat-NR2B9c) that uncouples GluN2B from PSD-95, whereas NMDAR-mediated activation of c-Jun N-terminal Kinase (JNK) MAPK is PSD-95-independent. To investigate the mechanism by which Tat-NR2B9c protects striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs) from mutant htt (mhtt)-enhanced NMDAR toxicity, we compared striatal tissue and cultured MSNs from presymptomatic yeast artificial chromosome (YAC) mice expressing htt with 128 polyQ (YAC128) to those from YAC18 and/or WT mice as controls. Similar to the previously published shift of GluN2B-containing NMDARs to extrasynaptic sites, we found increased PSD-95 localization as well as elevated PSD-95-GluN2B interactions in the striatal non-PSD (extrasynaptic) fraction from YAC128 mice. Notably, basal levels of both activated p38 and JNK MAPKs were elevated in the YAC128 striatum. NMDA stimulation of acute slices increased activation of p38 and JNK in WT and YAC128 striatum, but Tat-NR2B9c pretreatment reduced only the p38 activation in YAC128. In cultured MSNs, p38 MAPK inhibition reduced YAC128 NMDAR-mediated cell death to WT levels, and occluded the Tat-NR2B9c peptide protective effect; in contrast, inhibition of JNK had a similar protective effect in cultured MSNs from both WT and YAC128 mice. Our results suggest that altered activation of p38 MAPK contributes to mhtt enhancement of GluN2B/PSD-95 toxic signaling.

Funding information:
  • NIDCD NIH HHS - R01 DC014105(United States)

Synaptic proteome changes in a DNA repair deficient ercc1 mouse model of accelerated aging.

  • Végh MJ
  • J. Proteome Res.
  • 2012 Mar 2

Literature context:


Abstract:

Cognitive decline is one of the earliest hallmarks of both normal and pathological brain aging. Here we used Ercc1 mutant mice, which are impaired in multiple DNA repair systems and consequently show accelerated aging and progressive memory deficits, to identify changes in the levels of hippocampal synaptic proteins that potentially underlie these age-dependent deficits. Aged Ercc1 mutant mice show normal gross hippocampal dendritic morphology and synapse numbers, and Ercc1 mutant hippocampal neurons displayed normal outgrowth and synapse formation in vitro. However, using isobaric tag for relative and absolute quantification (iTRAQ) of hippocampal synaptic proteins at two different ages, postnatal days 28 and 112, we observed a progressive decrease in synaptic ionotropic glutamate receptor levels and increased levels of G-proteins and of cell adhesion proteins. These together may cause long-term changes in synapse function. In addition, we observed a downregulation of mitochondrial proteins and concomitant upregulation of Na,K-ATPase subunits, which might compensate for reduced mitochondrial activity. Thus, our findings show that under conditions of apparent intact neuronal connectivity, levels of specific synaptic proteins are already affected during the early stages of DNA damage-induced aging, which might contribute to age-dependent cognitive decline.

Funding information:
  • NIH HHS - P51 OD011133(United States)

Increased expression of Kalirin-9 in the auditory cortex of schizophrenia subjects: its role in dendritic pathology.

  • Deo AJ
  • Neurobiol. Dis.
  • 2012 Feb 16

Literature context:


Abstract:

Reductions in dendritic arbor length and complexity are among the most consistently replicated changes in neuronal structure in post mortem studies of cerebral cortical samples from subjects with schizophrenia, however, the underlying molecular mechanisms have not been identified. This study is the first to identify an alteration in a regulatory protein which is known to promote both dendritic length and arborization in developing neurons, Kalirin-9. We found Kalirin-9 expression to be paradoxically increased in schizophrenia. We followed up this observation by overexpressing Kalirin-9 in mature primary neuronal cultures, causing reduced dendritic length and complexity. Kalirin-9 overexpression represents a potential mechanism for dendritic changes seen in schizophrenia.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - U01 NS090595(United States)

RNA binding proteins accumulate at the postsynaptic density with synaptic activity.

  • Zhang G
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2012 Jan 11

Literature context:


Abstract:

Neuronal activity elicits changes in synaptic composition that play an important role in experience-dependent plasticity (Choquet and Triller, 2003; Lisman and Raghavachari, 2006; Bourne and Harris, 2008; Holtmaat and Svoboda, 2009). We used a modified version of stable isotope labeling by amino acids in cell culture to identify activity-dependent modifications in the composition of postsynaptic densities (PSDs) isolated from rat primary neuronal cultures. We found that synaptic activity altered ∼2% of the PSD proteome, which included an increase in diverse RNA binding proteins (RNABPs). Indeed, 12 of the 37 identified proteins whose levels changed with synaptic activity were RNABPs and included the heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoproteins (hnRNPs) G, A2/B1, M, and D. Knockdown of hnRNPs M and G using shRNAs resulted in altered numbers of dendritic spines, suggesting a crucial role for these proteins in spine density. Synaptic activity also resulted in a concomitant increase in dendritic and synaptic poly(A) mRNA. However, this increase was not affected by knockdown of hnRNPs M or G. Our results suggest that hnRNP proteins regulate dendritic spine density and may play a role in synaptodendritic mRNA metabolism.

Funding information:
  • NHLBI NIH HHS - HL093225(United States)

Alterations in AMPA receptor subunits and TARPs in the rat nucleus accumbens related to the formation of Ca²⁺-permeable AMPA receptors during the incubation of cocaine craving.

  • Ferrario CR
  • Neuropharmacology
  • 2011 Dec 19

Literature context:


Abstract:

Cue-induced cocaine seeking intensifies or incubates after withdrawal from extended access cocaine self-administration, a phenomenon termed incubation of cocaine craving. The expression of incubated craving is mediated by Ca²⁺-permeable AMPA receptors (CP-AMPARs) in the nucleus accumbens (NAc). Thus, CP-AMPARs are a potential target for therapeutic intervention, making it important to understand mechanisms that govern their accumulation. Here we used subcellular fractionation and biotinylation of NAc tissue to examine the abundance and distribution of AMPAR subunits, and GluA1 phosphorylation, in the incubation model. We also studied two transmembrane AMPA receptor regulatory proteins (TARPs), γ-2 and γ-4. Our results, together with earlier findings, suggest that some of the new CP-AMPARs are synaptic. These are probably associated with γ-2, but they are loosely tethered to the PSD. Levels of GluA1 phosphorylated at serine 845 (pS845 GluA1) were significantly increased in biotinylated tissue and in an extrasynaptic membrane-enriched fraction. These results suggest that increased synaptic levels of CP-AMPARs may result in part from an increase in pS845 GluA1 in extrasynaptic membranes, given that S845 phosphorylation primes GluA1-containing AMPARs for synaptic insertion and extrasynaptic AMPARs supply the synapse. Some of the new extrasynaptic CP-AMPARs are likely associated with γ-4, rather than γ-2. The maintenance of CP-AMPARs in NAc synapses during withdrawal is accompanied by activation of CaMKII and ERK2 but not CaMKI. Overall, AMPAR plasticity in the incubation model shares some features with better described forms of synaptic plasticity, although the timing of the phenomenon and the persistence of related neuroadaptations are significantly different.

Funding information:
  • NCI NIH HHS - P30 CA51008(United States)

Postsynaptic density-95 scaffolding of Shaker-type K⁺ channels in smooth muscle cells regulates the diameter of cerebral arteries.

  • Joseph BK
  • J. Physiol. (Lond.)
  • 2011 Nov 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

Postsynaptic density-95 (PSD95) is a 95 kDa scaffolding molecule in the brain that clusters postsynaptic proteins including ion channels, receptors, enzymes and other signalling partners required for normal cognition. The voltage-gated, Shaker-type K(+) (K(V)1) channel is one key binding partner of PSD95 scaffolds in neurons. However, K(V)1 channels composed of α1.2 and α1.5 pore-forming subunits also are expressed in the vascular smooth muscle cells (cVSMCs) of the cerebral circulation, although the identity of their molecular scaffolds is unknown. Since α1.2 contains a binding motif for PSD95, we explored the possibility that cVSMCs express PSD95 as a scaffold to promote K(V)1 channel expression and cerebral vasodilatation. Cerebral arteries from Sprague-Dawley rats were isolated for analysis of PSD95 and K(V)1 channel proteins. PSD95 was detected in cVSMCs and it co-immunoprecipitated and co-localized with the pore-forming α1.2 subunit of the K(V)1 channel. Antisense-mediated knockdown of PSD95 profoundly reduced K(V)1 channel expression and suppressed K(V)1 current in patch-clamped cVSMCs. Loss of PSD95 also depolarized cVSMCs in pressurized cerebral arteries and induced a strong constriction associated with a loss of functional K(V)1 channels. Our findings provide initial evidence that PSD95 is expressed in cVSMCs, and the K(V)1 channel is one of its important binding partners. PSD95 appears to function as a critical 'dilator' scaffold in cerebral arteries by increasing the number of functional K(V)1 channels at the plasma membrane.

Funding information:
  • NEI NIH HHS - R01 EY015128(United States)

Glutamatergic plasticity in medial prefrontal cortex and ventral tegmental area following extended-access cocaine self-administration.

  • Ghasemzadeh MB
  • Brain Res.
  • 2011 Sep 21

Literature context:


Abstract:

Glutamate signaling in prefrontal cortex and ventral tegmental area plays an important role in the molecular and behavioral plasticity associated with addiction to drugs of abuse. The current study investigated the expression and postsynaptic density redistribution of glutamate receptors and synaptic scaffolding proteins in dorsomedial and ventromedial prefrontal cortex and ventral tegmental area after cocaine self-administration. After 14 days of extended-access (6h/day) cocaine self-administration, rats were exposed to one of three withdrawal regimen for 10 days. Animals either stayed in home cages (Home), returned to self-administration boxes with the levers withdrawn (Box), or underwent extinction training (Extinction). Extinction training was associated with significant glutamatergic plasticity. In dorsomedial prefrontal cortex of the Extinction group, there was an increase in postsynaptic density GluR1, PSD95, and actin proteins; while postsynaptic density mGluR5 protein decreased and there was no change in NMDAR1, Homer1b/c, or PICK1 proteins. These changes were not observed in ventromedial prefrontal cortex or ventral tegmental area. In ventral tegmental area, Extinction training reversed the decreased postsynaptic density NMDAR1 protein in the Home and Box withdrawal groups. These data suggest that extinction of drug seeking is associated with selective glutamatergic plasticity in prefrontal cortex and ventral tegmental area that include modulation of receptor trafficking to postsynaptic density.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - R01 NS014841(United States)

Lateral assembly of the immunoglobulin protein SynCAM 1 controls its adhesive function and instructs synapse formation.

  • Fogel AI
  • EMBO J.
  • 2011 Sep 16

Literature context:


Abstract:

Synapses are specialized adhesion sites between neurons that are connected by protein complexes spanning the synaptic cleft. These trans-synaptic interactions can organize synapse formation, but their macromolecular properties and effects on synaptic morphology remain incompletely understood. Here, we demonstrate that the synaptic cell adhesion molecule SynCAM 1 self-assembles laterally via its extracellular, membrane-proximal immunoglobulin (Ig) domains 2 and 3. This cis oligomerization generates SynCAM oligomers with increased adhesive capacity and instructs the interactions of this molecule across the nascent and mature synaptic cleft. In immature neurons, cis assembly promotes the adhesive clustering of SynCAM 1 at new axo-dendritic contacts. Interfering with the lateral self-assembly of SynCAM 1 in differentiating neurons strongly impairs its synaptogenic activity. At later stages, the lateral oligomerization of SynCAM 1 restricts synaptic size, indicating that this adhesion molecule contributes to the structural organization of synapses. These results support that lateral interactions assemble SynCAM complexes within the synaptic cleft to promote synapse induction and modulate their structure. These findings provide novel insights into synapse development and the adhesive mechanisms of Ig superfamily members.

Funding information:
  • NEI NIH HHS - R01 EY012135(United States)

Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 regulates PSD-95 ubiquitination in neurons.

  • Bianchetta MJ
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2011 Aug 17

Literature context:


Abstract:

Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) and its activator p35 have been implicated in drug addiction, neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's, learning and memory, and synapse maturation and plasticity. However, the molecular mechanisms by which Cdk5 regulates synaptic plasticity are still unclear. PSD-95 is a major postsynaptic scaffolding protein of glutamatergic synapses that regulates synaptic strength and plasticity. PSD-95 is ubiquitinated by the ubiquitin E3 ligase Mdm2, and rapid and transient PSD-95 ubiquitination has been implicated in NMDA receptor-induced AMPA receptor endocytosis. Here we demonstrate that genetic or pharmacological reduction of Cdk5 activity increases the interaction of Mdm2 with PSD-95 and enhances PSD-95 ubiquitination without affecting PSD-95 protein levels in vivo in mice, suggesting a nonproteolytic function of ubiquitinated PSD-95 at synapses. We show that PSD-95 ubiquitination correlates with increased interaction with β-adaptin, a subunit of the clathrin adaptor protein complex AP-2. This interaction is increased by genetic reduction of Cdk5 activity or NMDA receptor stimulation and is dependent on Mdm2. Together these results support a function for Cdk5 in regulating PSD-95 ubiquitination and its interaction with AP-2 and suggest a mechanism by which PSD-95 may regulate NMDA receptor-induced AMPA receptor endocytosis.

Funding information:
  • NIDDK NIH HHS - R01 DK089113(United States)

Kalirin binds the NR2B subunit of the NMDA receptor, altering its synaptic localization and function.

  • Kiraly DD
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2011 Aug 31

Literature context:


Abstract:

The ability of dendritic spines to change size and shape rapidly is critical in modulating synaptic strength; these morphological changes are dependent upon rearrangements of the actin cytoskeleton. Kalirin-7 (Kal7), a Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factor localized to the postsynaptic density (PSD), modulates dendritic spine morphology in vitro and in vivo. Kal7 activates Rac and interacts with several PSD proteins, including PSD-95, DISC-1, AF-6, and Arf6. Mice genetically lacking Kal7 (Kal7(KO)) exhibit deficient hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP) as well as behavioral abnormalities in models of addiction and learning. Purified PSDs from Kal7(KO) mice contain diminished levels of NR2B, an NMDA receptor subunit that plays a critical role in LTP induction. Here we demonstrate that Kal7(KO) animals have decreased levels of NR2B-dependent NMDA receptor currents in cortical pyramidal neurons as well as a specific deficit in cell surface expression of NR2B. Additionally, we demonstrate that the genotypic differences in conditioned place preference and passive avoidance learning seen in Kal7(KO) mice are abrogated when animals are treated with an NR2B-specific antagonist during conditioning. Finally, we identify a stable interaction between the pleckstrin homology domain of Kal7 and the juxtamembrane region of NR2B preceding its cytosolic C-terminal domain. Binding of NR2B to a protein that modulates the actin cytoskeleton is important, as NMDA receptors require actin integrity for synaptic localization and function. These studies demonstrate a novel and functionally important interaction between the NR2B subunit of the NMDA receptor and Kalirin, proteins known to be essential for normal synaptic plasticity.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - R01 NS081674(United States)

Synaptic autoregulation by metalloproteases and γ-secretase.

  • Restituito S
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2011 Aug 24

Literature context:


Abstract:

The proteolytic machinery comprising metalloproteases and γ-secretase, an intramembrane aspartyl protease involved in Alzheimer's disease, cleaves several substrates in addition to the extensively studied amyloid precursor protein. Some of these substrates, such as N-cadherin, are synaptic proteins involved in synapse remodeling and maintenance. Here we show, in rats and mice, that metalloproteases and γ-secretase are physiologic regulators of synapses. Both proteases are synaptic, with γ-secretase tethered at the synapse by δ-catenin, a synaptic scaffolding protein that also binds to N-cadherin and, through scaffolds, to AMPA receptor and a metalloprotease. Activity-dependent proteolysis by metalloproteases and γ-secretase takes place at both sides of the synapse, with the metalloprotease cleavage being NMDA receptor-dependent. This proteolysis decreases levels of synaptic proteins and diminishes synaptic transmission. Our results suggest that activity-dependent substrate cleavage by synaptic metalloproteases and γ-secretase modifies synaptic transmission, providing a novel form of synaptic autoregulation.

Funding information:
  • NIMH NIH HHS - R01 MH059950(United States)

D-amino acid oxidase activity is inhibited by an interaction with bassoon protein at the presynaptic active zone.

  • Popiolek M
  • J. Biol. Chem.
  • 2011 Aug 19

Literature context:


Abstract:

Schizophrenia is a highly heritable neuropsychiatric disorder affecting ∼1% of the world's population. Linkage and association studies have identified multiple candidate schizophrenia susceptibility genes whose functions converge on the glutamatergic neurotransmitter system. One such susceptibility gene encoding D-amino acid oxidase (DAO), an enzyme that metabolizes the NMDA receptor (NMDAR) co-agonist D-serine, has the potential to modulate NMDAR function in the context of schizophrenia. To further investigate its cellular regulation, we sought to identify DAO-interacting proteins that participate in its functional regulation in rat cerebellum, where DAO expression is especially high. Immunoprecipitation with DAO-specific antibodies and subsequent mass spectrometric analysis of co-precipitated proteins yielded 24 putative DAO-interacting proteins. The most robust interactions occurred with known components of the presynaptic active zone, such as bassoon (BSN) and piccolo (PCLO). The interaction of DAO with BSN was confirmed through co-immunoprecipitation assays using DAO- and BSN-specific antibodies. Moreover, DAO and BSN colocalized with one another in cultured cerebellar granule cells and in synaptic junction membrane protein fractions derived from rat cerebellum. The functional consequences of this interaction were studied through enzyme assay experiments, where DAO enzymatic activity was significantly inhibited as a result of its interaction with BSN. Taking these results together, we hypothesize that synaptic D-serine concentrations may be under tight regulation by a BSN-DAO complex. We therefore predict that this mechanism plays a role in the modulation of glutamatergic signaling through NMDARs. It also furthers our understanding of the biology underlying this potential therapeutic entry point for schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - WT085949MA(United Kingdom)

Dendritic EGFP-STIM1 activation after type I metabotropic glutamate and muscarinic acetylcholine receptor stimulation in hippocampal neuron.

  • Ng AN
  • J. Neurosci. Res.
  • 2011 Aug 3

Literature context:


Abstract:

Several signaling pathways in neurons engage the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) calcium store by triggering calcium release. After release, ER calcium levels must be restored. In many non-neuronal cell types, this is mediated by store-operated calcium entry (SOCE), a cellular homeostatic mechanism that activates specialized store-operated calcium channels (SOC). Although much evidence supports the existence of SOCE in neurons, its importance has been difficult to determine because of the abundance of calcium channels expressed and the lack of SOC-specific pharmacological agents. We have explored the function of the SOCE-inducing protein STIM1 in neurons. In EGFP-STIM1-expressing hippocampal neurons, the sarco- and endoplasmic reticulum calcium ATPase (SERCA) inhibitor thapsigargin caused rapid aggregation (i.e., activation) of STIM1 in soma and dendrites. Upon STIM1 activation by thapsigargin, a dramatic reduction in STIM1 mobility was detected by fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP). By triggering release of ER calcium with 3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG) or carbachol (Cch), agonists of type I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR) and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChR), respectively, STIM1 was activated, and calcium entry (likely to represent SOCE) occurred in dendrites. It is therefore possible that neuronal SOCE is activated by physiological stimuli, some of which may alter the postsynaptic calcium signaling properties.

Funding information:
  • NCI NIH HHS - CA06927(United States)
  • NICHD NIH HHS - T32-HD046387(United States)

A circadian clock in hippocampus is regulated by interaction between oligophrenin-1 and Rev-erbα.

  • Valnegri P
  • Nat. Neurosci.
  • 2011 Aug 28

Literature context:


Abstract:

Oligophrenin-1 regulates dendritic spine morphology in the brain. Mutations in the oligophrenin-1 gene (OPHN1) cause intellectual disability. We discovered a previously unknown partner of oligophrenin-1, Rev-erbα, a nuclear receptor that represses the transcription of circadian oscillators. We found that oligophrenin-1 interacts with Rev-erbα in the mouse brain, causing it to locate to dendrites, reducing its repressor activity and protecting it from degradation. Our results indicate the presence of a circadian oscillator in the hippocampus, involving the clock gene Bmal1 (also known as Arntl), that is modulated by Rev-erbα and requires oligophrenin-1 for normal oscillation. We also found that synaptic activity induced Rev-erbα localization to dendrites and spines, a process that is mediated by AMPA receptor activation and requires oligophrenin-1. Our data reveal new interactions between synaptic activity and circadian oscillators, and delineate a new means of communication between nucleus and synapse that may provide insight into normal plasticity and the etiology of intellectual disability.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - 101253/Z/13/Z(United Kingdom)

Rivastigmine lowers Aβ and increases sAPPα levels, which parallel elevated synaptic markers and metabolic activity in degenerating primary rat neurons.

  • Bailey JA
  • PLoS ONE
  • 2011 Jul 29

Literature context:


Abstract:

Overproduction of amyloid-β (Aβ) protein in the brain has been hypothesized as the primary toxic insult that, via numerous mechanisms, produces cognitive deficits in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Cholinesterase inhibition is a primary strategy for treatment of AD, and specific compounds of this class have previously been demonstrated to influence Aβ precursor protein (APP) processing and Aβ production. However, little information is available on the effects of rivastigmine, a dual acetylcholinesterase and butyrylcholinesterase inhibitor, on APP processing. As this drug is currently used to treat AD, characterization of its various activities is important to optimize its clinical utility. We have previously shown that rivastigmine can preserve or enhance neuronal and synaptic terminal markers in degenerating primary embryonic cerebrocortical cultures. Given previous reports on the effects of APP and Aβ on synapses, regulation of APP processing represents a plausible mechanism for the synaptic effects of rivastigmine. To test this hypothesis, we treated degenerating primary cultures with rivastigmine and measured secreted APP (sAPP) and Aβ. Rivastigmine treatment increased metabolic activity in these cultured cells, and elevated APP secretion. Analysis of the two major forms of APP secreted by these cultures, attributed to neurons or glia based on molecular weight showed that rivastigmine treatment significantly increased neuronal relative to glial secreted APP. Furthermore, rivastigmine treatment increased α-secretase cleaved sAPPα and decreased Aβ secretion, suggesting a therapeutic mechanism wherein rivastigmine alters the relative activities of the secretase pathways. Assessment of sAPP levels in rodent CSF following once daily rivastigmine administration for 21 days confirmed that elevated levels of APP in cell culture translated in vivo. Taken together, rivastigmine treatment enhances neuronal sAPP and shifts APP processing toward the α-secretase pathway in degenerating neuronal cultures, which mirrors the trend of synaptic proteins, and metabolic activity.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - GM41624(United States)

EphA4 expression promotes network activity and spine maturation in cortical neuronal cultures.

  • Clifford MA
  • Neural Dev
  • 2011 May 4

Literature context:


Abstract:

BACKGROUND: Neurons form specific connections with targets via synapses and patterns of synaptic connectivity dictate neural function. During development, intrinsic neuronal specification and environmental factors guide both initial formation of synapses and strength of resulting connections. Once synapses form, non-evoked, spontaneous activity serves to modulate connections, strengthening some and eliminating others. Molecules that mediate intercellular communication are particularly important in synaptic refinement. Here, we characterize the influences of EphA4, a transmembrane signaling molecule, on neural connectivity. RESULTS: Using multi-electrode array analysis on in vitro cultures, we confirmed that cortical neurons mature and generate spontaneous circuit activity as cells differentiate, with activity growing both stronger and more patterned over time. When EphA4 was over-expressed in a subset of neurons in these cultures, network activity was enhanced: bursts were longer and were composed of more spikes than in control-transfected cultures. To characterize the cellular basis of this effect, dendritic spines, the major excitatory input site on neurons, were examined on transfected neurons in vitro. Strikingly, while spine number and density were similar between conditions, cortical neurons with elevated levels of EphA4 had significantly more mature spines, fewer immature spines, and elevated colocalization with a mature synaptic marker. CONCLUSIONS: These results demonstrate that experimental elevation of EphA4 promotes network activity in vitro, supporting spine maturation, producing more functional synaptic pairings, and promoting more active circuitry.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - 1-R01 NS054814-05(United States)

Membrane palmitoylated proteins regulate trafficking and processing of nectins.

  • Dudak A
  • Eur. J. Cell Biol.
  • 2011 May 11

Literature context:


Abstract:

Nectins are cell-cell adhesion molecules involved in the formation of various intercellular junctions and the establishment of apical-basal polarity at cell-cell adhesion sites. To have a better understanding of the roles of nectins in the formation of cell-cell junctions, we searched for new cytoplasmic binding partners for nectin. We report that nectin-1α associates with membrane palmitoylated protein 3 (MPP3), one of the human homologues of a Drosophila tumor suppressor gene, Disc large. Two major forms of MPP3 at 66 and 98 kDa were detected, in conjunction with nectin-1α, suggesting that an association between the two may occur in various cell types. Nectin-1α recruits MPP3 to cell-cell contact sites, mediated by a PDZ-binding motif at the carboxyl terminus of nectin-1α. Association with MPP3 increases cell surface expression of nectin-1α and enhances nectin-1α ectodomain shedding, indicating that MPP3 regulates trafficking and processing of nectin-1α. Further study showed that MPP3 interacts with nectin-3α, but not with nectin-2α, showing that the association of nectins with MPP3 is isoform-specific. MPP5, another MPP family member, interacts with nectins with varying affinity and facilitates surface expression of nectin-1α, nectin-2α, and nectin-3α. These data suggest that wide interactions between nectins and MPP family members may occur in various cell-cell junctions and that these associations may regulate trafficking and processing of nectins.

Funding information:
  • NCRR NIH HHS - R01 RR024031(United States)

Enhanced polyubiquitination of Shank3 and NMDA receptor in a mouse model of autism.

  • Bangash MA
  • Cell
  • 2011 May 27

Literature context:


Abstract:

We have created a mouse genetic model that mimics a human mutation of Shank3 that deletes the C terminus and is associated with autism. Expressed as a single copy [Shank3(+/ΔC) mice], Shank3ΔC protein interacts with the wild-type (WT) gene product and results in >90% reduction of Shank3 at synapses. This "gain-of-function" phenotype is linked to increased polyubiquitination of WT Shank3 and its redistribution into proteasomes. Similarly, the NR1 subunit of the NMDA receptor is reduced at synapses with increased polyubiquitination. Assays of postsynaptic density proteins, spine morphology, and synapse number are unchanged in Shank3(+/ΔC) mice, but the amplitude of NMDAR responses is reduced together with reduced NMDAR-dependent LTP and LTD. Reciprocally, mGluR-dependent LTD is markedly enhanced. Shank3(+/ΔC) mice show behavioral deficits suggestive of autism and reduced NMDA receptor function. These studies reveal a mechanism distinct from haploinsufficiency by which mutations of Shank3 can evoke an autism-like disorder.

Funding information:
  • NIMH NIH HHS - P50 MH071616(United States)

A requirement for nuclear factor-kappaB in developmental and plasticity-associated synaptogenesis.

  • Boersma MC
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2011 Apr 6

Literature context:


Abstract:

Structural plasticity of dendritic spines and synapses is a fundamental mechanism governing neuronal circuits and may form an enduring basis for information storage in the brain. We find that the p65 subunit of the nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) transcription factor, which is required for learning and memory, controls excitatory synapse and dendritic spine formation and morphology in murine hippocampal neurons. Endogenous NF-κB activity is elevated by excitatory transmission during periods of rapid spine and synapse development. During in vitro synaptogenesis, NF-κB enhances dendritic spine and excitatory synapse density and loss of endogenous p65 decreases spine density and spine head volume. Cell-autonomous function of NF-κB within the postsynaptic neuron is sufficient to regulate the formation of both presynaptic and postsynaptic elements. During synapse development in vivo, loss of NF-κB similarly reduces spine density and also diminishes the amplitude of synaptic responses. In contrast, after developmental synaptogenesis has plateaued, endogenous NF-κB activity is low and p65 deficiency no longer attenuates basal spine density. Instead, NF-κB in mature neurons is activated by stimuli that induce demand for new synapses, including estrogen and short-term bicuculline, and is essential for upregulating spine density in response to these stimuli. p65 is enriched in dendritic spines making local protein-protein interactions possible; however, the effects of NF-κB on spine density require transcription and the NF-κB-dependent regulation of PSD-95, a critical postsynaptic component. Collectively, our data define a distinct role for NF-κB in imparting transcriptional regulation required for the induction of changes to, but not maintenance of, excitatory synapse and spine density.

Funding information:
  • NEI NIH HHS - R01 EY013315(United States)

Genetic deletion of regulator of G-protein signaling 4 (RGS4) rescues a subset of fragile X related phenotypes in the FMR1 knockout mouse.

  • Pacey LK
  • Mol. Cell. Neurosci.
  • 2011 Mar 28

Literature context:


Abstract:

Fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most common cause of inherited mental retardation, is caused by the loss of the mRNA binding protein, FMRP. Persons with FXS also display epileptic seizures, social anxiety, hyperactivity, and autistic behaviors. The metabotropic glutamate receptor theory of FXS postulates that in the absence of FMRP, enhanced signaling though G-protein coupled group I metabotropic glutamate receptors in the brain contributes to many of the abnormalities observed in the disorder. However, recent evidence suggests that alterations in cellular signaling through additional G-protein coupled receptors may also be involved in the pathogenesis of FXS, thus providing impetus for examining downstream molecules. One group of signaling molecules situated downstream of the receptors is the regulator of G-protein signaling (RGS) proteins. Notably, RGS4 is highly expressed in brain and has been shown to negatively regulate signaling through Group I mGluRs and GABA(B) receptors. To examine the potential role for RGS4 in the pathogenesis of FXS, we generated FXS/RGS4 double knockout mice. Characterization of these mice revealed that a subset of FXS related phenotypes, including increased body weight, altered synaptic protein expression, and abnormal social behaviors, were rescued in the double knockout mice. Other phenotypes, such as hyperactivity and macroorchidism, were not affected by the loss of RGS4. These findings suggest that tissue and cell-type specific differences in GPCR signaling and RGS function may contribute to the spectrum of phenotypic differences observed in FXS.

Funding information:
  • NCRR NIH HHS - RR19895(United States)

The maturation of photoreceptors in the avian retina is stimulated by thyroid hormone.

  • Fischer AJ
  • Neuroscience
  • 2011 Mar 31

Literature context:


Abstract:

During retinal development, the cell-fate of photoreceptors is committed long before maturation, which entails the expression of opsins and functional transduction of light. The mechanisms that delay the maturation of photoreceptors remain unknown. We have recently reported that immature photoreceptors express the LIM domain transcription factors Islet2 and Lim3, as well as the cell-surface glycoprotein axonin1 [Fischer et al., (2008a) J Comp Neurol 506:584-603]. As the photoreceptors mature to form outer segments and express photopigments, the expression of the Islet2, Lim3 and axonin1 is diminished. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether thyroid hormone (TH) influences the maturation of photoreceptors. We studied the maturation of photoreceptors across the gradient of maturity that exists in far peripheral regions of the post-natal chicken retina [Ghai et al., (2008) Brain Res 1192:76-89]. We found that intraocular injections of TH down-regulated Islet2, Lim3 and axonin1 in photoreceptors in far peripheral regions of the retina. By contrast, TH stimulated the up-regulation of red-green opsin, violet opsin, rhodopsin and calbindin in photoreceptors. We found a correlation between the onset of RLIM (RING finger LIM-domain binding protein) and down-regulation of Islet2 and Lim3 in maturing photoreceptors; RLIM is known to interfere with the transcriptional activity of LIM-domain transcription factors. We conclude that TH stimulates the maturation of photoreceptors in the avian retina. We propose that TH inhibits the expression of Islet2 and Lim3, which thereby permits photoreceptor maturation and the onset of photopigment-expression.

Funding information:
  • NCI NIH HHS - CA-85129(United States)

Astrocytes control glutamate receptor levels at developing synapses through SPARC-beta-integrin interactions.

  • Jones EV
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2011 Mar 16

Literature context:


Abstract:

Neurons recruit numerous mechanisms to facilitate the development of synaptic connections. However, little is known about activity-dependent mechanisms that control the timing and fidelity of this process. Here we describe a novel pathway used by neurons to regulate glutamate receptors at maturing central synapses. This pathway relies on communication between neurons and astrocytes and the ability of astrocytes to release the factor SPARC (secreted protein, acidic and rich in cysteine). SPARC expression is dynamically regulated and plays a critical role in determining the level of synaptic AMPARs. SPARC ablation in mice increases excitatory synapse function, causes an abnormal accumulation of surface AMPARs at synapses, and impairs synaptic plasticity during development. We further demonstrate that SPARC inhibits the properties of neuronal β3-integrin complexes, which are intimately coupled to AMPAR stabilization at synapses. Thus neuron-glial signals control glutamate receptor levels at developing synapses to enable activity-driven modifications of synaptic strength.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - WT090548MA(United Kingdom)

Distribution of AMPA receptor subunits and TARPs in synaptic and extrasynaptic membranes of the adult rat nucleus accumbens.

  • Ferrario CR
  • Neurosci. Lett.
  • 2011 Mar 3

Literature context:


Abstract:

We characterized the distribution of AMPA receptor (AMPAR) subunits and the transmembrane AMPA receptor regulatory proteins (TARPs) γ-2 and γ-4 in adult rat nucleus accumbens (NAc) using a method that separates plasma membranes into synaptic membrane-enriched and extrasynaptic membrane-enriched fractions. We also measured GluA1 phosphorylated at serine 845 (pS845 GluA1) and serine 831 (pS831 GluA1). GluA1-3 protein levels and pS831 GluA1/total GluA1 were higher in synaptic membranes. However, pS845 GluA1/total GluA1 was higher in extrasynaptic membranes, consistent with a role for S845 phosphorylation in GluA1 insertion at extrasynaptic sites. Homeric GluA1 receptors were detected in extrasynaptic membranes, consistent with evidence for extrasynaptic Ca(2+)-permeable AMPARs in other systems. The TARP γ-2 was enriched in synaptic membranes, whereas γ-4 was mainly found in extrasynaptic membranes, suggesting distinct roles for these proteins in the NAc. These experiments provide fundamental information that will aid in the interpretation of studies on AMPAR-related plasticity in the NAc.

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - R01 GM074024(United States)

Activity-induced Notch signaling in neurons requires Arc/Arg3.1 and is essential for synaptic plasticity in hippocampal networks.

  • Alberi L
  • Neuron
  • 2011 Feb 10

Literature context:


Abstract:

Notch signaling in the nervous system has been most studied in the context of cell fate specification. However, numerous studies have suggested that Notch also regulates neuronal morphology, synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory. Here we show that Notch1 and its ligand Jagged1 are present at the synapse, and that Notch signaling in neurons occurs in response to synaptic activity. In addition, neuronal Notch signaling is positively regulated by Arc/Arg3.1, an activity-induced gene required for synaptic plasticity. In Arc/Arg3.1 mutant neurons, the proteolytic activation of Notch1 is disrupted both in vivo and in vitro. Conditional deletion of Notch1 in the postnatal hippocampus disrupted both long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD), and led to deficits in learning and short-term memory. Thus, Notch signaling is dynamically regulated in response to neuronal activity, Arc/Arg3.1 is a context-dependent Notch regulator, and Notch1 is required for the synaptic plasticity that contributes to memory formation.

Funding information:
  • Medical Research Council - G0900740(United Kingdom)

MHC class I modulates NMDA receptor function and AMPA receptor trafficking.

  • Fourgeaud L
  • Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
  • 2010 Dec 21

Literature context:


Abstract:

Proteins of the major histocompatibility complex class I (MHCI) are known for their role in immunity and have recently been implicated in long-term plasticity of excitatory synaptic transmission. However, the mechanisms by which MHCI influences synaptic plasticity remain unknown. Here we show that endogenous MHCI regulates synaptic responses mediated by NMDA-type glutamate receptors (NMDARs) in the mammalian central nervous system (CNS). The AMPA/NMDA ratio is decreased at MHCI-deficient hippocampal synapses, reflecting an increase in NMDAR-mediated currents. This enhanced NMDAR response is not associated with changes in the levels, subunit composition, or gross subcellular distribution of NMDARs. Increased NMDAR-mediated currents in MHCI-deficient neurons are associated with characteristic changes in AMPA receptor trafficking in response to NMDAR activation. Thus, endogenous MHCI tonically inhibits NMDAR function and controls downstream NMDAR-induced AMPA receptor trafficking during the expression of plasticity.

Funding information:
  • Howard Hughes Medical Institute - (United States)

Quantitative localisation of synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA receptor subunits on hippocampal pyramidal cells by freeze-fracture replica immunolabelling.

  • Kasugai Y
  • Eur. J. Neurosci.
  • 2010 Dec 30

Literature context:


Abstract:

Hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells, which receive γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic input from at least 18 types of presynaptic neuron, express 14 subunits of the pentameric GABA(A) receptor. The relative contribution of any subunit to synaptic and extrasynaptic receptors influences the dynamics of GABA and drug actions. Synaptic receptors mediate phasic GABA-evoked conductance and extrasynaptic receptors contribute to a tonic conductance. We used freeze-fracture replica-immunogold labelling, a sensitive quantitative immunocytochemical method, to detect synaptic and extrasynaptic pools of the alpha1, alpha2 and beta3 subunits. Antibodies to the cytoplasmic loop of the subunits showed immunogold particles concentrated on distinct clusters of intramembrane particles (IMPs) on the cytoplasmic face of the plasma membrane on the somata, dendrites and axon initial segments, with an abrupt decrease in labelling at the edge of the IMP cluster. Neuroligin-2, a GABAergic synapse-specific adhesion molecule, co-labels all beta3 subunit-rich IMP clusters, therefore we considered them synapses. Double-labelling for two subunits showed that virtually all somatic synapses contain the alpha1, alpha2 and beta3 subunits. The extrasynaptic plasma membrane of the somata, dendrites and dendritic spines showed low-density immunolabelling. Synaptic labelling densities on somata for the alpha1, alpha2 and beta3 subunits were 78-132, 94 and 79 times higher than on the extrasynaptic membranes, respectively. As GABAergic synapses occupy 0.72% of the soma surface, the fraction of synaptic labelling was 33-48 (alpha1), 40 (alpha2) and 36 (beta3)% of the total somatic surface immunolabelling. Assuming similar antibody access to all receptors, about 60% of these subunits are in extrasynaptic receptors.

Funding information:
  • NCCDPHP CDC HHS - 5DP1LM01150-05(United States)

Alternative splicing of neuroligin and its protein distribution in the outer plexiform layer of the chicken retina.

  • Wahlin KJ
  • J. Comp. Neurol.
  • 2010 Dec 15

Literature context:


Abstract:

Although synaptogenesis within the retina is obviously essential for vision, mechanisms responsible for the initiation and maintenance of retinal synapses are poorly understood. In addition to its scientific interest, understanding retinal synapse formation is becoming clinically relevant with ongoing efforts to develop transplantation-based approaches for the treatment of retinal degenerative disease. To extend our understanding, we have focused on the chick model system and have studied the neuroligin family of neuronal adhesion factors that has been shown to participate in synapse assembly in the brain. We identified chicken orthologs of neuroligins 1, -3, and -4, but could find no evidence of neuroligin 2. We investigated temporal and spatial patterns of mRNA and protein expression during development using standard polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), quantitative PCR (QPCR), laser-capture microdissection (LCM), and confocal microscopy. At the mRNA level, neuroligins were detected at the earliest period tested, embryonic day (ED)5, which precedes the period of inner retina synaptogenesis. Significant alternative splicing was observed through development. While neuroligin gene products were generally detected in the inner retina, low levels of neuroligin 1 mRNA were also detected in the photoreceptor layer. Neuroligin 3 and -4 transcripts, on the other hand, were only detected in the inner retina. At retinal synapses neuroligin 1 protein was detected in the inner plexiform layer, but its highest levels were detected in the outer plexiform layer on the tips of horizontal cell dendrites. This work lays the groundwork for future studies on the functional roles of the neuroligins within the retina.

Funding information:
  • Austrian Science Fund FWF - P 19467(Austria)

Blocking ADAM10 synaptic trafficking generates a model of sporadic Alzheimer's disease.

  • Epis R
  • Brain
  • 2010 Nov 29

Literature context:


Abstract:

We describe here an innovative, non-transgenic animal model of Alzheimer's disease. This model mimics early stages of sporadic disease, which represents the vast majority of cases. The model was obtained by interfering with the complex between a disintegrin and metalloproteinase domain containing protein 10 (ADAM10), the main α-secretase candidate, and its partner, synapse-associated protein 97, a protein of the postsynaptic density-membrane associated guanylate kinase family. Association of ADAM10 with synapse-associated protein 97 governs enzyme trafficking and activity at synapses. Interfering with the ADAM10/synapse-associated protein 97 complex for 2 weeks by means of a cell-permeable peptide strategy is sufficient to shift the metabolism of the amyloid precursor protein towards amyloidogenesis and allows the reproduction of initial phases of sporadic Alzheimer's disease. After 2 weeks of treatment, we detected progressive Alzheimer's disease-like neuropathology, with an increase of β-amyloid aggregate production and of tau hyperphosphorylation, and a selective alteration of N-methyl-d-aspartic acid receptor subunit composition in the postsynaptic compartment of mouse brain. Behavioural and electrophysiological deficits were also induced by peptide treatment.

Funding information:
  • NLM NIH HHS - R01 LM06845(United States)

Array tomography: immunostaining and antibody elution.

  • Micheva KD
  • Cold Spring Harb Protoc
  • 2010 Nov 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

Array tomography is a volumetric microscopy method based on physical serial sectioning. Ultrathin sections of a plastic-embedded tissue are cut using an ultramicrotome, bonded in an ordered array to a glass coverslip, stained as desired, and imaged. The resulting two-dimensional image tiles can then be reconstructed computationally into three-dimensional volume images for visualization and quantitative analysis. The minimal thickness of individual sections permits high-quality rapid staining and imaging, whereas the array format allows reliable and convenient section handling, staining, and automated imaging. Also, the physical stability of the arrays permits images to be acquired and registered from repeated cycles of staining, imaging, and stain elution, as well as from imaging using multiple modalities (e.g., fluorescence and electron microscopy). Array tomography makes it possible to visualize and quantify previously inaccessible features of tissue structure and molecular architecture. However, careful preparation of the tissue is essential for successful array tomography; these steps can be time-consuming and require some practice to perfect. In this protocol, tissue arrays are prepared for imaging by tagging with primary antibodies against specific cellular targets, followed by labeling with fluorescent secondary antibodies. Alternatively, fluorescent proteins that have been introduced into the tissue before dissection can be used.

Funding information:
  • NHGRI NIH HHS - T32 HG003284(United States)

Vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (VASP) induces actin assembly in dendritic spines to promote their development and potentiate synaptic strength.

  • Lin WH
  • J. Biol. Chem.
  • 2010 Nov 12

Literature context:


Abstract:

Dendritic spines are small actin-rich structures that receive the majority of excitatory synaptic input in the brain. The actin-based dynamics of spines are thought to mediate synaptic plasticity, which underlies cognitive processes, such as learning and memory. However, little is known about the molecular mechanisms that regulate actin dynamics in spines and synapses. In this study we show the multifunctional actin-binding protein vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (VASP) regulates the density, size, and morphology of dendritic spines by inducing actin assembly in these structures. Knockdown of endogenous VASP by siRNA led to a significant decrease in the density of spines and synapses, whereas expression of siRNA-resistant VASP rescued this defect. The ability of VASP to modulate spine and synapse formation, maturation, and spine head enlargement is dependent on its actin binding Ena/VASP homology 2 (EVH2) domain and its EVH1 domain, which contributes to VASP localization to actin-rich structures. Moreover, VASP increases the amount of PSD-scaffolding proteins and the number of surface GluR1-containing α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid receptors (AMPARs) in spines. VASP knockdown results in a reduction in surface AMPAR density, suggesting a role for this protein in regulating synaptic strength. Consistent with this, VASP significantly enhances the retention of GluR1 in spines as determined by fluorescence recovery after photobleaching and increases AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission. Collectively, our results suggest that actin polymerization and bundling by VASP are critical for spine formation, expansion, and modulating synaptic strength.

Funding information:
  • PHS HHS - IH U01 A1070499-01(United States)

Serotonin, but not N-methyltryptamines, activates the serotonin 2A receptor via a ß-arrestin2/Src/Akt signaling complex in vivo.

  • Schmid CL
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2010 Oct 6

Literature context:


Abstract:

Hallucinogens mediate many of their psychoactive effects by activating serotonin 2A receptors (5-HT(2A)R). Although serotonin is the cognate endogenous neurotransmitter and is not considered hallucinogenic, metabolites of serotonin also have high affinity at 5-HT(2A)R and can induce hallucinations in humans. Here we report that serotonin differs from the psychoactive N-methyltryptamines by its ability to engage a β-arrestin2-mediated signaling cascade in the frontal cortex. Serotonin and 5-hydroxy-L-tryptophan (5-HTP) induce a head-twitch response in wild-type (WT) mice that is a behavioral proxy for 5-HT(2A)R activation. The response in β-arrestin2 knock-out (βarr2-KO) mice is greatly attenuated until the doses are elevated, at which point, βarr2-KO mice display a head-twitch response that can exceed that of WT mice. Direct administration of N-methyltryptamines also produces a greater response in βarr2-KO mice. Moreover, the inhibition of N-methyltransferase blocks 5-HTP-induced head twitches in βarr2-KO mice, indicating that N-methyltryptamines, rather than serotonin, primarily mediate this response. Biochemical studies demonstrate that serotonin stimulates Akt phosphorylation in the frontal cortex and in primary cortical neurons through the activation of a β-arrestin2/phosphoinositide 3-kinase/Src/Akt cascade, whereas N-methyltryptamines do not. Furthermore, disruption of any of the components of this cascade prevents 5-HTP-induced, but not N-methyltryptamine-induced, head twitches. We propose that there is a bifurcation of 5-HT(2A)R signaling that is neurotransmitter and β-arrestin2 dependent. This demonstration of agonist-directed 5-HT(2A)R signaling in vivo may significantly impact drug discovery efforts for the treatment of disorders wherein hallucinations are part of the etiology, such as schizophrenia, or manifest as side effects of treatment, such as depression.

Funding information:
  • Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council - BB/G022623/1(United Kingdom)

Proline-rich tyrosine kinase 2 regulates hippocampal long-term depression.

  • Hsin H
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2010 Sep 8

Literature context:


Abstract:

Proline-rich tyrosine kinase 2 (PYK2), also known as cell adhesion kinase beta or protein tyrosine kinase 2b, is a calcium-dependent signaling protein involved in cell migration. Phosphorylation of residue Y402 is associated with activation of PYK2 and leads to the recruitment of downstream signaling molecules. PYK2 was previously implicated in long-term potentiation (LTP); however, the role of PYK2 in long-term depression (LTD) is unknown. Here, we report that PYK2 is activated by NMDA receptor stimulation (chemical LTD) in cultured neurons. Small hairpin RNA-mediated knockdown of PYK2 blocks LTD, but not LTP, in hippocampal slice cultures. We find that the Y402 residue and, to a lesser extent, PYK2 kinase activity contribute to PYK2's role in LTD. Knockdown experiments indicate that PYK2 is required to suppress NMDA-induced extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) phosphorylation. Overexpression of PYK2 depresses NMDA-induced ERK phosphorylation and inhibits LTP, but not LTD. Our data indicate that PYK2 is critical for the induction of LTD, possibly in part by antagonizing ERK signaling in hippocampal neurons.

Funding information:
  • NIDDK NIH HHS - P30 DK57516(United States)

MHC class I molecules are present both pre- and postsynaptically in the visual cortex during postnatal development and in adulthood.

  • Needleman LA
  • Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
  • 2010 Sep 28

Literature context:


Abstract:

Immune molecules have been discovered recently to play critical roles in the development, function, and plasticity of the cerebral cortex. MHC class I (MHCI) molecules are expressed in the central nervous system and regulate activity-dependent refinement of visual projections during late postnatal development. They have also been implicated in neurodevelopmental diseases such as schizophrenia and autism. Despite the excitement generated by these unique roles for immune proteins in the brain, little is known about how these molecules regulate cortical connections. The first step toward elucidating the mechanism is to identify the spatial and temporal distribution of MHCI proteins throughout development. Using a pan-specific antibody that recognizes many MHCI variants for biochemistry and immunohistochemistry, we found that MHCI proteins are expressed in the rat visual cortex at all ages examined-during the peak of synaptogenesis, the critical period of synaptic refinement, and adulthood. Their abundance in the cortex peaked during early postnatal development, declining during periods of plasticity and adulthood. In contrast to current assumptions, pre- and postembedding immunogold electron microscopy (EM) revealed that MHCI proteins were present both pre- and postsynaptically at all ages examined. They were often found in the postsynaptic density and were closely associated with synaptic vesicles in the presynaptic terminal. These results suggest a previously undescribed model in which MHCI molecules function on both sides of the synapse to regulate connectivity in the mammalian visual cortex before, during, and after the establishment of connections.

Funding information:
  • NHGRI NIH HHS - U01-HG004866(United States)

PTEN is recruited to the postsynaptic terminal for NMDA receptor-dependent long-term depression.

  • Jurado S
  • EMBO J.
  • 2010 Aug 18

Literature context:


Abstract:

Phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted on chromosome ten (PTEN) is an important regulator of phosphatidylinositol-(3,4,5,)-trisphosphate signalling, which controls cell growth and differentiation. However, PTEN is also highly expressed in the adult brain, in which it can be found in dendritic spines in hippocampus and other brain regions. Here, we have investigated specific functions of PTEN in the regulation of synaptic function in excitatory hippocampal synapses. We found that NMDA receptor activation triggers a PDZ-dependent association between PTEN and the synaptic scaffolding molecule PSD-95. This association is accompanied by PTEN localization at the postsynaptic density and anchoring within the spine. On the other hand, enhancement of PTEN lipid phosphatase activity is able to drive depression of AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic responses. This activity is specifically required for NMDA receptor-dependent long-term depression (LTD), but not for LTP or metabotropic glutamate receptor-dependent LTD. Therefore, these results reveal PTEN as a regulated signalling molecule at the synapse, which is recruited to the postsynaptic membrane upon NMDA receptor activation, and is required for the modulation of synaptic activity during plasticity.

Funding information:
  • NIDDK NIH HHS - R01 DK078150(United States)

Beta amyloid-independent role of amyloid precursor protein in generation and maintenance of dendritic spines.

  • Lee KJ
  • Neuroscience
  • 2010 Aug 11

Literature context:


Abstract:

Synapse loss induced by amyloid beta (Abeta) is thought to be a primary contributor to cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease. Abeta is generated by proteolysis of amyloid precursor protein (APP), a synaptic receptor whose physiological function remains unclear. In the present study, we investigated the role of APP in dendritic spine formation, which is known to be important for learning and memory. We found that overexpression of APP increased spine number, whereas knockdown of APP reduced spine density in cultured hippocampal neurons. This spine-promoting effect of APP required both the extracellular and intracellular domains of APP, and was accompanied by specific upregulation of the GluR2, but not the GluR1, subunit of AMPA receptors. In an in vivo experiment, we found that cortical layers II/III and hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons in 1 year-old APP-deficient mice had fewer and shorter dendritic spines than wild-type littermates. In contrast, transgenic mice overexpressing mutant APP exhibited increased spine density compared to control animals, though only at a young age prior to overaccumulation of soluble amyloid. Additionally, increased glutamate synthesis was observed in young APP transgenic brains, whereas glutamate levels were decreased and GABA levels were increased in APP-deficient mice. These results demonstrate that APP is important for promoting spine formation and is required for proper spine development.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - 089275(United Kingdom)

The SH3 domain of postsynaptic density 95 mediates inflammatory pain through phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase recruitment.

  • Arbuckle MI
  • EMBO Rep.
  • 2010 Jun 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

Sensitization to inflammatory pain is a pathological form of neuronal plasticity that is poorly understood and treated. Here we examine the role of the SH3 domain of postsynaptic density 95 (PSD95) by using mice that carry a single amino-acid substitution in the polyproline-binding site. Testing multiple forms of plasticity we found sensitization to inflammation was specifically attenuated. The inflammatory response required recruitment of phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase-C2alpha to the SH3-binding site of PSD95. In wild-type mice, wortmannin or peptide competition attenuated the sensitization. These results show that different types of behavioural plasticity are mediated by specific domains of PSD95 and suggest novel therapeutic avenues for reducing inflammatory pain.

Funding information:
  • NCI NIH HHS - P30CA54174(United States)

TARP phosphorylation regulates synaptic AMPA receptors through lipid bilayers.

  • Sumioka A
  • Neuron
  • 2010 Jun 10

Literature context:


Abstract:

Neurons use neurotransmitters to communicate across synapses, constructing neural circuits in the brain. AMPA-type glutamate receptors are the predominant excitatory neurotransmitter receptors mediating fast synaptic transmission. AMPA receptors localize at synapses by forming protein complexes with transmembrane AMPA receptor regulatory proteins (TARPs) and PSD-95-like membrane-associated guanylate kinases. Among the three classes of ionotropic glutamate receptors (AMPA, NMDA, and kainate type), AMPA receptor activity is most regulatable by neuronal activity to adjust synaptic strength. Here, we mutated the prototypical TARP, stargazin, and found that TARP phosphorylation regulates synaptic AMPA receptor activity in vivo. We also found that stargazin interacts with negatively charged lipid bilayers in a phosphorylation-dependent manner and that the lipid interaction inhibited stargazin binding to PSD-95. Cationic lipids dissociated stargazin from lipid bilayers and enhanced synaptic AMPA receptor activity in a stargazin phosphorylation-dependent manner. Thus, TARP phosphorylation plays a critical role in regulating AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission via a lipid bilayer interaction.

Funding information:
  • NCRR NIH HHS - M01-RR00084(United States)

Huntingtin-associated protein-1 deficiency in orexin-producing neurons impairs neuronal process extension and leads to abnormal behavior in mice.

  • Lin YF
  • J. Biol. Chem.
  • 2010 May 21

Literature context:


Abstract:

Huntingtin-associated protein-1 (Hap1) is a neuronal protein that associates with huntingtin, the Huntington disease protein. Although Hap1 and huntingtin are known to be involved in intracellular trafficking, whether and how the impairment of Hap1-associated trafficking leads to neurological pathology and symptoms remain to be seen. As Hap1 is enriched in neuronal cells in the brain, addressing this issue is important in defining the role of defective intracellular trafficking in the selective neuropathology associated with Hap1 dysfunction. Here, we find that Hap1 is abundantly expressed in orexin (hypocretin)-producing neurons (orexin neurons), which are distinctly distributed in the hypothalamus and play an important role in the regulation of feeding and behavior. We created conditional Hap1 knock-out mice to selectively deplete Hap1 in orexin neurons via the Cre-loxP system. These mice show process fragmentation of orexin neurons and reductions in food intake, body weight, and locomotor activity. Sucrose density gradient fractionation reveals that loss of Hap1 in the mouse brain also reduces the distribution of trafficking protein complexes and cargo proteins in the fractions that are enriched in synaptosomes. These results suggest that Hap1 is critical for the transport of multiple proteins to the nerve terminals to maintain the integrity of neuronal processes and that selective disruption of the processes of orexin neurons can cause abnormal feeding and locomotor activity.

Panel of synaptic protein ELISAs for evaluating neurological phenotype.

  • Gottschall PE
  • Exp Brain Res
  • 2010 Apr 16

Literature context:


Abstract:

The purpose of this study was to develop ELISAs for key neural proteins, three synaptic and one glial, that exist in different intracellular compartments, which would be used as a measure of synaptic phenotype. These assays would be valuable to neurologically phenotype transgenic mouse models of human disease and also human disease itself using minimal amounts of post-mortem tissue. We showed that supernatant from crude brain tissue homogenates extracted in RIPA buffer containing 0.1% SDS bind to synaptophysin, synaptosome-associated protein of 25 kDa (SNAP-25), post-synaptic density-95 (PSD-95), and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) antibody pairs with high affinity and selectivity. Overall, RIPA + 0.1% SDS were more efficient than RIPA + 2% SDS or a buffer containing only 1% Triton-X-100. Diluting the brain extracts resulted in dose-dependent binding to the antibody pairs for each neural protein, with EC50s that varied from 8.6 microg protein for PSD-95 to 0.23 microg for GFAP. The assays were used to measure synaptic marker protein levels at various times during mouse development and GFAP in a model of disease accompanied by neuroinflammation. Comparison of ELISAs with Western blots by measuring marker levels in brain extract from developing mice showed a greater relative difference in values derived from ELISA. These ELISAs should be valuable to phenotype the synapse in neurological disease and their rodent models.

Matrix metalloproteinase-dependent shedding of intercellular adhesion molecule-5 occurs with long-term potentiation.

  • Conant K
  • Neuroscience
  • 2010 Mar 17

Literature context:


Abstract:

Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are a family of zinc-dependent endopeptidases that can be released or activated in a neuronal activity dependent manner. Although pathologically elevated levels of MMPs may be synaptotoxic, physiologically appropriate levels of MMPs may instead enhance synaptic transmission. MMP inhibitors can block long term potentiation (LTP), and at least one family member can affect an increase in the volume of dendritic spines. While the mechanism by which MMPs affect these changes is not completely understood, one possibility is that the cleavage of specific synaptic cell adhesion molecules plays a role. In the present study, we have examined the ability of neuronal activity to stimulate rapid MMP dependent shedding of the intercellular adhesion molecule-5 (ICAM-5), a synaptic adhesion molecule that is thought to inhibit the maturation and enlargement of dendritic spines. Since such cleavage would likely occur within minutes if it were relevant to a process such as LTP, we focused on post stimulus time points of 30 min or less. We show that NMDA can stimulate rapid shedding of ICAM-5 from cortical neurons in dissociated cell cultures and that such shedding is diminished by pretreatment of cultures with inhibitors that target MMP-3 and -9, proteases thought to influence synaptic plasticity. Additional studies suggest that MMP mediated cleavage of ICAM-5 occurs at amino acid 780, so that the major portion of the ectodomain is released. Since reductions in ICAM-5 have been linked to changes in dendritic spine morphology that are associated with LTP, we also examined the possibility that MMP dependent ICAM-5 shedding occurs following high frequency tetanic stimulation of murine hippocampal slices. Results show that the shedding of ICAM-5 occurs in association with LTP, and that both LTP and the associated ICAM-5 shedding are reduced when slices are pretreated with an MMP inhibitor. Together, these findings suggest that neuronal activity is linked to the shedding of a molecule that may inhibit dendritic spine enlargement and that MMPs can affect this change. While further studies will be necessary to determine the extent to which cleavage of ICAM-5 in particular contributes to MMP dependent LTP, our data support an emerging body of literature suggesting that MMPs are critical mediators of synaptic plasticity.

Disrupted-in-Schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) regulates spines of the glutamate synapse via Rac1.

  • Hayashi-Takagi A
  • Nat. Neurosci.
  • 2010 Mar 18

Literature context:


Abstract:

Synaptic spines are dynamic structures that regulate neuronal responsiveness and plasticity. We examined the role of the schizophrenia risk factor DISC1 in the maintenance of spine morphology and function. We found that DISC1 anchored Kalirin-7 (Kal-7), regulating access of Kal-7 to Rac1 and controlling the duration and intensity of Rac1 activation in response to NMDA receptor activation in both cortical cultures and rat brain in vivo. These results explain why Rac1 and its activator (Kal-7) serve as important mediators of spine enlargement and why constitutive Rac1 activation decreases spine size. This mechanism likely underlies disturbances in glutamatergic neurotransmission that have been frequently reported in schizophrenia that can lead to alteration of dendritic spines with consequential major pathological changes in brain function. Furthermore, the concept of a signalosome involving disease-associated factors, such as DISC1 and glutamate, may well contribute to the multifactorial and polygenetic characteristics of schizophrenia.

Synaptic clustering of PSD-95 is regulated by c-Abl through tyrosine phosphorylation.

  • Perez de Arce K
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2010 Mar 10

Literature context:


Abstract:

The c-Abl tyrosine kinase is present in mouse brain synapses, but its precise synaptic function is unknown. We found that c-Abl levels in the rat hippocampus increase postnatally, with expression peaking at the first postnatal week. In 14 d in vitro hippocampal neuron cultures, c-Abl localizes primarily to the postsynaptic compartment, in which it colocalizes with the postsynaptic scaffold protein postsynaptic density protein-95 (PSD-95) in apposition to presynaptic markers. c-Abl associates with PSD-95, and chemical or genetic inhibition of c-Abl kinase activity reduces PSD-95 tyrosine phosphorylation, leading to reduced PSD-95 clustering and reduced synapses in treated neurons. c-Abl can phosphorylate PSD-95 on tyrosine 533, and mutation of this residue reduces the ability of PSD-95 to cluster at postsynaptic sites. Our results indicate that c-Abl regulates synapse formation by mediating tyrosine phosphorylation and clustering of PSD-95.

Dact1 is a postsynaptic protein required for dendrite, spine, and excitatory synapse development in the mouse forebrain.

  • Okerlund ND
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2010 Mar 24

Literature context:


Abstract:

Dact1 (Dapper/Frodo), an intracellular phosphoprotein that binds Dishevelled, catenins, and other signaling proteins, is expressed in the developing and mature mammalian CNS, but its function there is unknown. Dact1 colocalized with synaptic markers and partitioned to postsynaptic fractions from cultured mouse forebrain neurons. Hippocampal neurons from Dact1 knock-out mice had simpler dendritic arbors and fewer spines than hippocampal neurons from wild-type littermates. This correlated with reductions in excitatory synapses and miniature EPSCs, whereas inhibitory synapses were not affected. Loss of Dact1 resulted in a decrease in activated Rac, and recombinant expression of either Dact1 or constitutively active Rac, but not Rho or Cdc42, rescued dendrite and spine phenotypes in Dact1 mutant neurons. Our findings suggest that, during neuronal differentiation, Dact1 plays a critical role in a molecular pathway promoting Rac activity underlying the elaboration of dendrites and the establishment of spines and excitatory synapses.

Activation of Wnt signaling by lithium and rosiglitazone reduced spatial memory impairment and neurodegeneration in brains of an APPswe/PSEN1DeltaE9 mouse model of Alzheimer's disease.

  • Toledo EM
  • Mol. Psychiatry
  • 2010 Mar 19

Literature context:


Abstract:

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a progressive deterioration of cognitive abilities, accumulation of the amyloid-beta-peptide (Abeta) and synaptic alterations. Treatment with lithium has been shown to provide neuroprotection against several insults, including protection against Abeta neurotoxicity in vitro. Rosiglitazone, a peroxisome proliferator activated receptor-gamma agonist, has been shown to attenuate Abeta-peptide neurotoxic effects, including the inflammatory response of microglia and astrocytes. Both types of drugs activate Wnt signaling, a pathway that has been shown to be related to AD. In this study, a double transgenic mouse model, which coexpresses APPswe and the exon 9 deletion of the presenilin 1 (PSEN1) gene, was used to examine, in vivo, the effect of lithium and rosiglitazone on Abeta neurotoxicity. Mice were tested for spatial memory, and their brain samples were used for histochemical and biochemical analysis. In this study, we report that both drugs significantly reduced (1) spatial memory impairment induced by amyloid burden; (2) Abeta aggregates and Abeta oligomers; and (3) astrocytic and microglia activation. They also prevented changes in presynaptic and postsynaptic marker proteins. Finally, both drugs activate Wnt signaling shown by the increase in beta-catenin and by the inhibition of the glycogen synthase kinase-3beta. We conclude that lithium and rosiglitazone, possibly by the activation of the Wnt signaling pathway, reduce various AD neuropathological markers and may be considered as potential therapeutic agents against the disease.

Autophosphorylated CaMKIIalpha acts as a scaffold to recruit proteasomes to dendritic spines.

  • Bingol B
  • Cell
  • 2010 Feb 19

Literature context:


Abstract:

The molecular mechanisms regulating the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) at synapses are poorly understood. We report that CaMKIIalpha-an abundant postsynaptic protein kinase-mediates the activity-dependent recruitment of proteasomes to dendritic spines in hippocampal neurons. CaMKIIalpha is biochemically associated with proteasomes in the brain. CaMKIIalpha translocation to synapses is required for activity-induced proteasome accumulation in spines, and is sufficient to redistribute proteasomes to postsynaptic sites. CaMKIIalpha autophosphorylation enhances its binding to proteasomes and promotes proteasome recruitment to spines. In addition to this structural role, CaMKIIalpha stimulates proteasome activity by phosphorylating proteasome subunit Rpt6 on Serine 120. However, CaMKIIalpha translocation, but not its kinase activity, is required for activity-dependent degradation of polyubiquitinated proteins in spines. Our findings reveal a scaffolding role of postsynaptic CaMKIIalpha in activity-dependent proteasome redistribution, which is commensurate with the great abundance of CaMKIIalpha in synapses.

Postsynaptic PDLIM5/Enigma Homolog binds SPAR and causes dendritic spine shrinkage.

  • Herrick S
  • Mol. Cell. Neurosci.
  • 2010 Feb 3

Literature context:


Abstract:

Dendritic spine morphology is thought to play important roles in synaptic development and plasticity, and morphological derangements in spines are correlated with several neurological disorders. Here, we identified an interaction between Spine-Associated RapGAP (SPAR), a postsynaptic protein that reorganizes actin cytoskeleton and drives dendritic spine head growth, and PDLIM5/Enigma Homolog (ENH), a PDZ-LIM (postsynaptic density-95/Discs large/zona occludens 1-Lin11/Isl-1/Mec3) family member. PDLIM5 has been implicated in susceptibility to bipolar disorder, major depression, and schizophrenia, but its function in neurological disease is poorly understood. We show that PDLIM5 is present in the postsynaptic density, where it promotes decreased dendritic spine head size and longer, filopodia-like morphology. Conversely, RNA interference against PDLIM5 or loss of PDLIM5 interaction with SPAR caused increased spine head diameter. Furthermore, PKC activation promoted delivery of PDLIM5 into dendritic spines and increased its spine colocalization with SPAR. These data reveal new postsynaptic functions for PDLIM5 in shrinkage of dendritic spines that may be relevant to its association with psychiatric illness.

ADAM22, a Kv1 channel-interacting protein, recruits membrane-associated guanylate kinases to juxtaparanodes of myelinated axons.

  • Ogawa Y
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2010 Jan 20

Literature context:


Abstract:

Clustered Kv1 K(+) channels regulate neuronal excitability at juxtaparanodes of myelinated axons, axon initial segments, and cerebellar basket cell terminals (BCTs). These channels are part of a larger protein complex that includes cell adhesion molecules and scaffolding proteins. To identify proteins that regulate assembly, clustering, and/or maintenance of axonal Kv1 channel protein complexes, we immunoprecipitated Kv1.2 alpha subunits, and then used mass spectrometry to identify interacting proteins. We found that a disintegrin and metalloproteinase 22 (ADAM22) is a component of the Kv1 channel complex and that ADAM22 coimmunoprecipitates Kv1.2 and the membrane-associated guanylate kinases (MAGUKs) PSD-93 and PSD-95. When coexpressed with MAGUKs in heterologous cells, ADAM22 and Kv1 channels are recruited into membrane surface clusters. However, coexpression of Kv1.2 with ADAM22 and MAGUKs does not alter channel properties. Among all the known Kv1 channel-interacting proteins, only ADAM22 is found at every site where Kv1 channels are clustered. Analysis of Caspr-null mice showed that, like other previously described juxtaparanodal proteins, disruption of the paranodal junction resulted in redistribution of ADAM22 into paranodal zones. Analysis of Caspr2-, PSD-93-, PSD-95-, and double PSD-93/PSD-95-null mice showed ADAM22 clustering at BCTs requires PSD-95, but ADAM22 clustering at juxtaparanodes requires neither PSD-93 nor PSD-95. In direct contrast, analysis of ADAM22-null mice demonstrated juxtaparanodal clustering of PSD-93 and PSD-95 requires ADAM22, whereas Kv1.2 and Caspr2 clustering is normal in ADAM22-null mice. Thus, ADAM22 is an axonal component of the Kv1 K(+) channel complex that recruits MAGUKs to juxtaparanodes.

A postsynaptic signaling pathway that may account for the cognitive defect due to IL1RAPL1 mutation.

  • Pavlowsky A
  • Curr. Biol.
  • 2010 Jan 26

Literature context:


Abstract:

BACKGROUND: Interleukin-1 receptor accessory protein-like 1 (IL1RAPL1) gene mutations are associated with cognitive impairment ranging from nonsyndromic X-linked mental retardation to autism. IL1RAPL1 belongs to a novel family of Toll/IL-1 receptors, whose expression in the brain is upregulated by neuronal activity. Currently, very little is known about the function of this protein. We previously showed that IL1RAPL1 interacts with the neuronal calcium sensor NCS-1 and that it regulates voltage-gated calcium channel activity in PC12 cells. RESULTS: Here we show that IL1RAPL1 is present in dendritic spine where it interacts with PSD-95, a major component of excitatory postsynaptic compartment. Using gain- and loss-of-function experiments in neurons, we demonstrated that IL1RAPL1 regulates the synaptic localization of PSD-95 by controlling c-Jun terminal kinase (JNK) activity and PSD-95 phosphorylation. Mice carrying a null mutation of the mouse Il1rapl1 gene show a reduction of both dendritic spine density and excitatory synapses in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. These structural abnormalities are associated with specific deficits in hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity. CONCLUSION: The interaction of IL1RAPL1 with PSD-95 discloses a novel pathophysiological mechanism of cognitive impairment associated with alterations of the JNK pathway leading to a mislocalization of PSD-95 and abnormal synaptic organization and function.

Synchronous and asynchronous transmitter release at nicotinic synapses are differentially regulated by postsynaptic PSD-95 proteins.

  • Neff RA
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2009 Dec 16

Literature context:


Abstract:

The rate and timing of information transfer at neuronal synapses are critical for determining synaptic efficacy and higher network function. Both synchronous and asynchronous neurotransmitter release shape the pattern of synaptic influences on a neuron. The PSD-95 family of postsynaptic scaffolding proteins, in addition to organizing postsynaptic components at glutamate synapses, acts transcellularly to regulate synchronous glutamate release. Here we show that PSD-95 family members at nicotinic synapses on chick ciliary ganglion neurons in culture execute multiple functions to enhance transmission. Together, endogenous PSD-95 and SAP102 in the postsynaptic cell appear to regulate transcellularly the synchronous release of transmitter from presynaptic terminals onto the neuron while stabilizing postsynaptic nicotinic receptor clusters under the release sites. Endogenous SAP97, in contrast, has no effect on receptor clusters but acts transcellularly from the postsynaptic cell through N-cadherin to enhance asynchronous release. These separate and parallel regulatory pathways allow postsynaptic scaffold proteins to dictate the pattern of cholinergic input a neuron receives; they also require balancing of PSD-95 protein levels to avoid disruptive competition that can occur through common binding domains.

Early synapse formation in developing interneurons of the adult olfactory bulb.

  • Panzanelli P
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2009 Dec 2

Literature context:


Abstract:

New olfactory bulb granule cells (GCs) are GABAergic interneurons continuously arising from neuronal progenitors and integrating into preexisting bulbar circuits. They receive both GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic inputs from olfactory bulb intrinsic neurons and centrifugal afferents. Here, we investigated the spatiotemporal dynamic of newborn GC synaptogenesis in adult mouse olfactory bulb. First, we established that GABAergic synapses onto mature GC dendrites contain the GABA(A) receptor alpha2 subunit along with the postsynaptic scaffolding protein gephyrin. Next, we characterized morphologically and electrophysiologically the development of GABAergic and glutamatergic inputs onto newborn GCs labeled with eGFP (enhanced green fluorescent protein) using lentiviral vectors. Already when reaching the GC layer (GCL), at 3 d post-vector injection (dpi), newborn GCs exhibited tiny voltage-dependent sodium currents and received functional GABAergic and glutamatergic synapses, recognized immunohistochemically by apposition of specific presynaptic and postsynaptic markers. Thereafter, GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic contacts increased differentially in the GCL, and at 7 dpi, PSD-95 clusters outnumbered gephyrin clusters. Thus, the weight of GABAergic input was predominant at early stages of GC maturation, but not later. Newborn GC dendrites first reached the external plexiform layer at 4 dpi, where they received functional GABAergic contacts at 5 dpi. Reciprocal synapses initially were formed on GC dendritic shafts, where they might contribute to spine formation. Their presence was confirmed ultrastructurally at 7 dpi. Together, our findings unravel rapid synaptic integration of newborn GCs in adult mouse olfactory bulb, with GABAergic and glutamatergic influences being established proximally before formation of output synapses by apical GC dendrites onto mitral/tufted cells.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - (United Kingdom)

A coordinated local translational control point at the synapse involving relief from silencing and MOV10 degradation.

  • Banerjee S
  • Neuron
  • 2009 Dec 24

Literature context:


Abstract:

Persistent changes in synaptic strength are locally regulated by both protein degradation and synthesis; however, the coordination of these opposing limbs is poorly understood. Here, we found that the RISC protein MOV10 was present at synapses and was rapidly degraded by the proteasome in an NMDA-receptor-mediated activity-dependent manner. We designed a translational trap to capture those mRNAs whose spatiotemporal translation is regulated by MOV10. When MOV10 was suppressed, a set of mRNAs--including alpha-CaMKII, Limk1, and the depalmitoylating enzyme lysophospholipase1 (Lypla1)--selectively entered the polysome compartment. We also observed that Lypla1 mRNA is associated with the brain-enriched microRNA miR-138. Using a photoconvertible translation reporter, Kaede, we analyzed the activity-dependent protein synthesis driven by Lypla1 and alpha-CaMKII 3'UTRs. We established this protein synthesis to be MOV10 and proteasome dependent. These results suggest a unifying picture of a local translational regulatory mechanism during synaptic plasticity.

Role of the Wnt receptor Frizzled-1 in presynaptic differentiation and function.

  • Varela-Nallar L
  • Neural Dev
  • 2009 Nov 2

Literature context:


Abstract:

BACKGROUND: The Wnt signaling pathway regulates several fundamental developmental processes and recently has been shown to be involved in different aspects of synaptic differentiation and plasticity. Some Wnt signaling components are localized at central synapses, and it is thus possible that this pathway could be activated at the synapse. RESULTS: We examined the distribution of the Wnt receptor Frizzled-1 in cultured hippocampal neurons and determined that this receptor is located at synaptic contacts co-localizing with presynaptic proteins. Frizzled-1 was found in functional synapses detected with FM1-43 staining and in synaptic terminals from adult rat brain. Interestingly, overexpression of Frizzled-1 increased the number of clusters of Bassoon, a component of the active zone, while treatment with the extracellular cysteine-rich domain (CRD) of Frizzled-1 decreased Bassoon clustering, suggesting a role for this receptor in presynaptic differentiation. Consistent with this, treatment with the Frizzled-1 ligand Wnt-3a induced presynaptic protein clustering and increased functional presynaptic recycling sites, and these effects were prevented by co-treatment with the CRD of Frizzled-1. Moreover, in synaptically mature neurons Wnt-3a was able to modulate the kinetics of neurotransmitter release. CONCLUSION: Our results indicate that the activation of the Wnt pathway through Frizzled-1 occurs at the presynaptic level, and suggest that the synaptic effects of the Wnt signaling pathway could be modulated by local activation through synaptic Frizzled receptors.

Funding information:
  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research - (Canada)

Contribution of the neural cell recognition molecule NB-3 to synapse formation between parallel fibers and Purkinje cells in mouse.

  • Sakurai K
  • Dev Neurobiol
  • 2009 Oct 15

Literature context:


Abstract:

The neural cell recognition molecule NB-3, also referred to as contactin-6, is expressed prominently in the developing nervous system after birth and its deficiency has been shown to cause impairment in motor coordination. Here, we investigated the contribution of NB-3 to cerebellar development, focusing on lobule 3 where NB-3 was expressed in granule cells but not in Purkinje cells. In the developing molecular layer, the neural cell recognition molecules TAG-1, L1, and NB-3 formed distinct expression zones from the external granule cell layer to the internal granule cell layer (IGL), respectively. The NB-3-immunoreactive zone did not overlap with TAG-1-immunoreactive zone. By contrast, the L1-immunoreactive zone overlapped with both the TAG-1- and NB-3-immunoreactive zones. NB-3-positive puncta overlapped with vesicular glutamate transporter 1, a presynaptic marker and were apposed close to metabotropic glutamate receptor 1A, a postsynaptic marker, indicating that NB-3 is localized presynaptically at glutamatergic synapses between parallel fibers and Purkinje cells. In NB-3 knockout mice, L1 immunoreactive signals were increased in the IGL at postnatal day (P) 5, suggesting the increase in the number of immature granule cells of the IGL. In addition, the density of parallel fiber synaptic terminals was reduced in NB-3 knockout mice relative to wild-type mice at P5 to P10. In parallel with these findings, caspase-dependent cell death was significantly increased in the NB- 3-deficient cerebellum at P15. Collectively, our results indicate that NB-3 deficiency affects synapse formation during postnatal cerebellar development.

VGLUT1 and VGAT are sorted to the same population of synaptic vesicles in subsets of cortical axon terminals.

  • Fattorini G
  • J. Neurochem.
  • 2009 Sep 2

Literature context:


Abstract:

Glutamate and GABA mediate most of the excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission; they are taken up and accumulated in synaptic vesicles by specific vesicular transporters named VGLUT1-3 and VGAT, respectively. Recent studies show that VGLUT2 and VGLUT3 are co-expressed with VGAT. Because of the relevance this information has for our understanding of synaptic physiology and plasticity, we investigated whether VGLUT1 and VGAT are co-expressed in rat cortical neurons. In cortical cultures and layer V cortical terminals we observed a population of terminals expressing VGLUT1 and VGAT. Post-embedding immunogold studies showed that VGLUT1+/VGAT+ terminals formed both symmetric and asymmetric synapses. Triple-labeling studies revealed GABAergic synapses expressing VGLUT1 and glutamatergic synapses expressing VGAT. Immunoisolation studies showed that anti-VGAT immunoisolated vesicles contained VGLUT1 and anti-VGLUT1 immunoisolated vesicles contained VGAT. Finally, vesicles containing VGAT resident in glutamatergic terminals undergo active recycling. In conclusion, we demonstrate that in neocortex VGLUT1 and VGAT are co-expressed in a subset of axon terminals forming both symmetric and asymmetric synapses, that VGLUT1 and VGAT are sorted to the same vesicles and that vesicles at synapses expressing the vesicular heterotransporter participate in the exo-endocytotic cycle.

SAP97 and CASK mediate sorting of NMDA receptors through a previously unknown secretory pathway.

  • Jeyifous O
  • Nat. Neurosci.
  • 2009 Aug 28

Literature context:


Abstract:

Synaptic plasticity is dependent on the differential sorting, delivery and retention of neurotransmitter receptors, but the mechanisms underlying these processes are poorly understood. We found that differential sorting of glutamate receptor subtypes began in the endoplasmic reticulum of rat hippocampal neurons. As AMPA receptors (AMPARs) were trafficked to the plasma membrane via the conventional somatic Golgi network, NMDA receptors (NMDARs) were diverted from the somatic endoplasmic reticulum into a specialized endoplasmic reticulum subcompartment that bypasses somatic Golgi, merging instead with dendritic Golgi outposts. This endoplasmic reticulum subcompartment was composed of highly mobile vesicles containing the NMDAR subunits NR1 and NR2B, the microtubule-dependent motor protein KIF17, and the postsynaptic adaptor proteins CASK and SAP97. Our data demonstrate that the retention and trafficking of NMDARs in this endoplasmic reticulum subcompartment requires both CASK and SAP97. These findings indicate that NMDARs are sorted away from AMPARs via a non-conventional secretory pathway that utilizes dendritic Golgi outposts.

Locomotor sensitization to cocaine is associated with distinct pattern of glutamate receptor trafficking to the postsynaptic density in prefrontal cortex: early versus late withdrawal effects.

  • Ghasemzadeh MB
  • Pharmacol. Biochem. Behav.
  • 2009 May 23

Literature context:


Abstract:

Glutamatergic neurotransmission plays an important role in the behavioral and molecular plasticity observed in cocaine mediated locomotor sensitization. Recent studies show that glutamatergic signaling is regulated by receptor trafficking, synaptic localization, and association with scaffolding proteins. The trafficking of the glutamate receptors was investigated in the dorsal and ventral prefrontal cortex at 1 and 21 days after repeated cocaine administration which produced robust locomotor sensitization. A subcellular fractionation technique was used to isolate the cellular synaptosomal fraction containing the postsynaptic density. At early withdrawal, the prefrontal cortex displayed a reduction in the synaptosomal content of the AMPA and NMDA receptor subunits. In contrast, after extended withdrawal, there was a significant increase in the trafficking of the receptors into the synaptosomal compartment. These changes were accompanied by corresponding trafficking of the postsynaptic glutamatergic scaffolding proteins. Thus, enhanced trafficking of glutamate receptors from cytosolic to synaptosomal compartment is associated with prolonged withdrawal from repeated exposure to cocaine and may have functional consequences for the synaptic and behavioral plasticity.

Neuroadaptations in the cellular and postsynaptic group 1 metabotropic glutamate receptor mGluR5 and Homer proteins following extinction of cocaine self-administration.

  • Ghasemzadeh MB
  • Neurosci. Lett.
  • 2009 Mar 13

Literature context:


Abstract:

This study examined the role of group1 metabotropic glutamate receptor mGluR5 and associated postsynaptic scaffolding protein Homer1b/c in behavioral plasticity after three withdrawal treatments from cocaine self-administration. Rats self-administered cocaine or saline for 14 days followed by a withdrawal period during which rats underwent extinction training, remained in their home cages, or were placed in the self-administration chambers in the absence of extinction. Subsequently, the tissue level and distribution of proteins in the synaptosomal fraction associated with the postsynaptic density were examined. Cocaine self-administration followed by home cage exposure reduced the mGluR5 protein in nucleus accumbens (NA) shell and dorsolateral striatum. While extinction training reduced mGluR5 protein in NAshell, NAcore and dorsolateral striatum did not display any change. The scaffolding protein PSD95 increased in NAcore of the extinguished animals. Extinction of drug seeking was associated with a significant decrease in the synaptosomal mGluR5 protein in NAshell and an increase in dorsolateral striatum, while that of NAcore was not modified. Interestingly, both Homer1b/c and PSD95 scaffolding proteins were decreased in the synaptosomal fraction after extinction training in NAshell but not NAcore. Extinguished drug-seeking behavior was also associated with an increase in the synaptosomal actin proteins in dorsolateral striatum. Therefore, extinction of cocaine seeking is associated with neuroadaptations in mGluR5 expression and distribution that are region-specific and consist of extinction-induced reversal of cocaine-induced adaptations as well as emergent extinction-induced alterations. Concurrent plasticity in the scaffolding proteins further suggests that mGluR5 receptor neuroadaptations may have implications for synaptic function.

Functional tetrodotoxin-resistant Na(+) channels are expressed presynaptically in rat dorsal root ganglia neurons.

  • Medvedeva YV
  • Neuroscience
  • 2009 Mar 17

Literature context:


Abstract:

The tetrodotoxin-resistant (TTX-R) voltage-gated Na(+) channels Na(v)1.8 and Na(v)1.9 are expressed by a subset of primary sensory neurons and have been implicated in various pain states. Although recent studies suggest involvement of TTX-R Na(+) channels in sensory synaptic transmission and spinal pain processing, it remains unknown whether TTX-R Na(+) channels are expressed and function presynaptically. We examined expression of TTX-R channels at sensory synapses formed between rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) and spinal cord (SC) neurons in a DRG/SC co-culture system. Immunostaining showed extensive labeling of presynaptic axonal boutons with Na(v)1.8- and Na(v)1.9-specific antibodies. Measurements using the fluorescent Na(+) indicator SBFI demonstrated action potential-induced presynaptic Na(+) entry that was resistant to tetrodotoxin (TTX) but was blocked by lidocaine. Furthermore, presynaptic [Ca(2+)](i) elevation in response to a single action potential was not affected by TTX in TTX-resistant DRG neurons. Finally, glutamatergic synaptic transmission was not inhibited by TTX in more than 50% of synaptic pairs examined; subsequent treatment with lidocaine completely blocked these TTX-resistant excitatory postsynaptic currents. Taken together, these results provide evidence for presynaptic expression of functional TTX-R Na(+) channels that may be important for shaping presynaptic action potentials and regulating transmitter release at the first sensory synapse.

Behavioral sensitization to cocaine is associated with increased glutamate receptor trafficking to the postsynaptic density after extended withdrawal period.

  • Ghasemzadeh MB
  • Neuroscience
  • 2009 Mar 3

Literature context:


Abstract:

Glutamatergic signaling plays an important role in the behavioral and molecular plasticity observed in behavioral sensitization to cocaine. Redistribution of the glutamate receptors in the synaptosomal membrane fraction was investigated in the nucleus accumbens, dorsolateral striatum, and ventral tegmental area at 1 or 21 days of withdrawal in behaviorally sensitized rats. At 1 day of withdrawal, there were no changes in either tissue level or redistribution of glutamate receptors in nucleus accumbens core and shell and ventral tegmental area. At 21 days of withdrawal, there was a decrease in the expression of mGluR2/3 protein in core and shell, an increase in GluR1 and a decrease in Homer1b/c proteins in the nucleus accumbens core tissue. In dorsolateral striatum, the tissue level of NMDAR2B protein was increased. Moreover, there was an augmented presence of AMPA (GluR1, GluR2), NMDA (NMDAR1, 2A, 2B), and group 1 metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR5) proteins in the synaptosomal fraction in core and shell of the nucleus accumbens. There was also an increase in synaptosomal mGluR2/3 protein in nucleus accumbens core. The redistribution of glutamate receptors was selective for nucleus accumbens since no changes were observed in the dorsolateral striatum and ventral tegmental area. While the tissue level of the Homer1b/c protein was selectively reduced in nucleus accumbens core, that of PSD95, PICK1, and actin was not changed in any of the brain regions examined. However, the synaptosomal membrane fraction level of Homer1b/c and PSD95 was increased in nucleus accumbens core and shell, with no changes in PICK1, and a decrease in actin protein. These observations suggest that significant redistribution of glutamate receptors and postsynaptic scaffolding proteins into synaptosomal membrane fraction is associated with withdrawal from behavioral sensitization to cocaine.

Chronic CXCL10 alters neuronal properties in rat hippocampal culture.

  • Cho J
  • J. Neuroimmunol.
  • 2009 Feb 15

Literature context:


Abstract:

The chemokine CXCL10 is expressed in the central nervous system (CNS) during neuroinflammatory conditions. Neurons express CXCR3, the receptor for CXCL10, and neuronal function has been shown to be altered by acute exposure to CXCL10. Little is known about the effects of chronic exposure to CXCL10 on neuronal function. Results from our studies show that chronic exposure of cultured rat hippocampal neurons to CXCL10 results in altered levels of protein for GABA and glutamate receptors and altered synaptic network activity. These effects of CXCL10 may contribute to altered CNS function that occurs in some chronic neuroinflammatory conditions.

Proteomics analysis of immuno-precipitated synaptic protein complexes.

  • Klemmer P
  • J Proteomics
  • 2009 Feb 15

Literature context:


Abstract:

Synapses are key neuronal elements of the brain. They are responsible for transmission, integration, and storage of information between nerve cells. A synapse is considered as the most complex cellular organelle consisting of approximately 1500 of proteins that are interacting in an activity dependent manner. We have initiated a series of immuno-precipitation experiments in conjunction with LC-MS/MS analysis in order to gain better insight into the organization of the synapse. In particular, we focused on proteins that have been implicated previously in the process of neuroplasticity, i.e., the glutamate receptor (GluR2), scaffolding proteins (PSD-95 and CASK), voltage gated potassium (KCNQ2 and Kv4.2) and calcium (CaV beta4) channel subunits, the signalling protein (GIT1) and synaptic vesicle protein (synaptophysin). This study confirms the previous reported protein-protein interactions and furthermore detects novel interactors. In conjunction with the literature reported protein-protein interaction a simple synaptic protein interactome was constructed. This model implicates the potential interaction of distinct protein complexes, and the engagement of single proteins, especially the scaffolding proteins, in multiple protein complexes.

Toponomics analysis of functional interactions of the ubiquitin ligase PAM (Protein Associated with Myc) during spinal nociceptive processing.

  • Pierre S
  • Mol. Cell Proteomics
  • 2008 Dec 3

Literature context:


Abstract:

Protein associated with Myc (PAM) is a giant E3 ubiquitin ligase of 510 kDa. Although the role of PAM during neuronal development is well established, very little is known about its function in the regulation of synaptic strength. Here we used multiepitope ligand cartography (MELC) to study protein network profiles associated with PAM during the modulation of synaptic strength. MELC is a novel imaging technology that utilizes biomathematical tools to describe protein networks after consecutive immunohistochemical visualization of up to 100 proteins on the same sample. As an in vivo model to modulate synaptic strength we used the formalin test, a common model for acute and inflammatory pain. MELC analysis was performed with 37 different antibodies or fluorescence tags on spinal cord slices and led to the identification of 1390 PAM-related motifs that distinguish untreated and formalin-treated spinal cords. The majority of these motifs related to ubiquitin-dependent processes and/or the actin cytoskeleton. We detected an intermittent colocalization of PAM and ubiquitin with TSC2, a known substrate of PAM, and the glutamate receptors mGluR5 and GLUR1. Importantly these complexes were detected exclusively in the presence of F-actin. A direct PAM/F-actin interaction was confirmed by colocalization and cosedimentation. The binding of PAM toward F-actin varied strongly between the PAM splice forms found in rat spinal cords. PAM did not ubiquitylate actin or alter actin polymerization and depolymerization. However, F-actin decreased the ubiquitin ligase activity of purified PAM. Because PAM activation is known to involve its translocation, the binding of PAM to F-actin may serve to control its subcellular localization as well as its activity. Taken together we show that defining protein network profiles by topological proteomics analysis is a useful tool to identify previously unknown protein/protein interactions that underlie synaptic processes.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - T32 NS007098(United States)

Mislocalization of h channel subunits underlies h channelopathy in temporal lobe epilepsy.

  • Shin M
  • Neurobiol. Dis.
  • 2008 Oct 16

Literature context:


Abstract:

Many animal models of temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) begin with status epilepticus (SE) followed by a latency period. Increased hippocampal pyramidal neuron excitability may contribute to seizures in TLE. I(h), mediated by h channels, regulates intrinsic membrane excitability by modulating synaptic integration and dampening dendritic calcium signaling. In a rat model of TLE, we found bidirectional changes in h channel function in CA1 pyramidal neurons. 1-2 d after SE, before onset of spontaneous seizures, physiological parameters dependent upon h channels were augmented and h channel subunit surface expression was increased. 28-30 d following SE, after onset of spontaneous seizures, h channel function in dendrites was reduced, coupled with diminished h channel subunit surface expression and relocalization of subunits from distal dendrites to soma. These results implicate h channel localization as a molecular mechanism influencing CA1 excitability in TLE.

Postsynaptic density-93 clusters Kv1 channels at axon initial segments independently of Caspr2.

  • Ogawa Y
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2008 May 28

Literature context:


Abstract:

Postsynaptic density-93 (PSD-93)/Chapsyn-110 is a PDZ (PSD-95/Discs large/zona occludens-1) domain-containing membrane-associated guanylate kinase (MAGUK) that functions as a scaffold to assemble channels, receptors, and other signaling proteins at cell membranes. PSD-93 is highly enriched at synapses, but mice lacking this protein have no synaptic structural abnormalities, probably because of overlapping expression and redundancy with other MAGUKs. Consequently, the function of PSD-93 is not well understood. Here, we show that PSD-93, but not other MAGUKs, is enriched at the axon initial segment (AIS), where it colocalizes with Kv1.1, Kv1.2, Kv1.4, and Kvbeta2 subunit-containing K(+) channels, Caspr2, and TAG-1 (transient axonal glycoprotein-1). When coexpressed with Kv1 channels in heterologous cells, PSD-93 induces formation of large cell-surface clusters. Knockdown of PSD-93 in cultured hippocampal neurons by RNA interference disrupted Kv1 channel localization at the AIS. Similarly, PSD-93-/- mice failed to cluster Kv1 channels at the AIS of cortical and hippocampal neurons. In contrast, Caspr2, which mediates Kv1 channel clustering at the juxtaparanode, is not required for localization of Kv1 channels at the AIS. These results show PSD-93 mediates AIS accumulation of Kv1 channels independently of Caspr2.

Molecular dynamics of photoreceptor synapse formation in the developing chick retina.

  • Wahlin KJ
  • J. Comp. Neurol.
  • 2008 Feb 10

Literature context:


Abstract:

The cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying photoreceptor synaptogenesis are poorly understood. Furthermore, a detailed picture of the molecular composition of photoreceptor synapses, or their subtypes, is not yet available, nor do we know what differences, if any, exist among those subtypes. To address these questions, we investigated temporal and spatial patterns of expression and assembly of photoreceptor presynaptic components during chick embryo retinal development and early posthatched life by using reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), dissociated retinal cells, laser-capture microdissection (LCM), immunocytochemistry and confocal microscopy. Immunocytochemistry in tissue sections and dissociated cells showed many similarities and few differences in the synaptic composition of rods and cone subtypes, which, however, were found to project to different strata within the outer plexiform layer. A striking finding was the precise timetable of expression of synaptic genes and proteins during synaptogenesis. Although mRNAs for some synaptic molecules appeared as early as embryonic day (ED) 5-8 (the time of inner retina synaptogenesis), others were undetectable before the time of onset of photoreceptor synaptogenesis on ED13, including CAST, rim2, synapsin-2, syntaxin-3, synaptotagmin, glutamate receptors -1, -4, and -5, homer-1 and -2, and tenascin-R. Most synaptic proteins in photoreceptors followed a similar sequence of expression: they were negative or weakly positive before ED13, appeared in inner segments between ED13 and ED15, became subsequently detectable in perinuclear and axonal regions, and by ED18 were assembled into synaptic terminals and became undetectable in the inner segments. The identity of the signals that regulate the coordinated expression of these synaptic components remains to be investigated.

Funding information:
  • NIMH NIH HHS - MH48866(United States)

Transient expression of LIM-domain transcription factors is coincident with delayed maturation of photoreceptors in the chicken retina.

  • Fischer AJ
  • J. Comp. Neurol.
  • 2008 Feb 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

In the retina of warm-blooded vertebrates, photoreceptors are specified many days before the onset of synaptogenesis and the expression of photopigments. The factors that regulate the maturation of photoreceptors in the developing retina remain unknown. We report here that photoreceptors transiently express LIM-domain transcription factors during the development of the chicken retina. We examined the differentiation of photoreceptors through the normal course of embryonic development and at the far periphery of the postnatal retina, where the differentiation of photoreceptors is slowed and persists across a spatial gradient. In the embryonic retina, we find visinin-positive photoreceptors that transiently express Islet2 and Lim3 starting at E8 and ending around E15, but persisting in far peripheral regions of the retina through the first 2 weeks of postnatal development. During early stages of photoreceptor maturation, there is coincident and transient expression of the LIM-domain factors with axonin1, a cell surface glycoprotein that is a member of the immunoglobulin superfamily. Coincident with the downregulation of Islet2 and Lim3, we find the upregulation of calbindin, red/green opsin, rhodopsin, and a synaptic marker in the outer plexiform layer (OPL; dystrophin). In the periphery of the postnatal retina, photoreceptors that express Islet2, Lim3, and axonin1 do not overlap with photoreceptors that express calbindin, red/green opsin, rhodopsin, and dystrophin. We propose that Islet2 and Lim3 may promote the expression of genes that are involved in the early stages of differentiation but may suppress the expression of genes that are required in the mature photoreceptors.

Funding information:
  • NIMH NIH HHS - P50MH103222(United States)

Developmental regulation of muscleblind-like (MBNL) gene expression in the chicken embryo retina.

  • Huang H
  • Dev. Dyn.
  • 2008 Jan 27

Literature context:


Abstract:

Muscleblind-like (MBNL) is a CCCH zinc finger-containing RNA-binding protein required for the development of both muscle and photoreceptors in Drosophila; it is conserved evolutionarily, and it is associated in humans with the muscular disease myotonic dystrophy. Its role in the development of vertebrate retinal cells, however, remains unknown. As an initial approach to its investigation, we have cloned three chick muscleblind genes, characterized their isoforms, and examined their expression patterns in the chick embryo retina. The relative levels of expression of the MBNL genes increased during embryonic development. In situ hybridization (ISH) showed that the three MBNL mRNAs had widespread patterns of expression at all the developmental stages examined. Of interest, the temporal and spatial patterns of protein expression, detected by immunocytochemistry with antibodies against MBNL1 and MBNL2, were much more restricted than those seen by ISH. At early stages (ED5-7), for example, MBNL1 and MBNL2 mRNAs were present throughout the retina, but immunoreactivity for the corresponding proteins was largely restricted to the periphery of the optic cup (presumptive iris/ciliary epithelium/ciliary margin zone). MBNL1 and MBNL2 immunoreactivity became detectable at the fundus at later stages, but was limited to a very small subset of the cells that had ISH signals for the cognate mRNAs (particularly ganglion cells and photoreceptors). Within photoreceptors, MBNL1 and MBNL2 immunoreactivity first appeared in their inner segments; MBNL2 remained there, but MBNL1 became subsequently localized to their synaptic terminals. These expression patterns are consistent with the possibility that MBNLs may regulate photoreceptor development in the chick retina, much as MBL does in Drosophila, and suggest that the expression of MBNL1 and MBNL2 may be regulated posttranscriptionally.

Funding information:
  • NINDS NIH HHS - R21 NS072588(United States)

NMDA di-heteromeric receptor populations and associated proteins in rat hippocampus.

  • Al-Hallaq RA
  • J. Neurosci.
  • 2007 Aug 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

Subunit composition of NMDA receptors (NMDARs) determines a range of physiological properties, downstream signaling effects, and binding partners. Differential localization of NR2A- or NR2B-containing NMDARs within the neuron and subunit-specific protein associations may explain differences in NR2A and NR2B contributions to synaptic plasticity and excitotoxic cell death. This question is complicated by the existence of tri-heteromeric complexes (NR1/NR2A/NR2B). To date, no quantitative biochemical determinations have been made of the relative abundance of different NMDAR populations in intact hippocampus, the region extensively correlated with NMDAR-dependent long-term potentiation. We investigated subunit composition and subunit-specific interactions in CA1/CA2 of rat hippocampus. Using sequential immunoprecipitations to deplete either NR2B or NR2A, di-heteromeric NR1/NR2A and NR1/NR2B receptor populations were isolated from postnatal day 7 (P7) hippocampus and P42 and 6-month-old CA1/CA2. Quantitative Western blot analysis revealed that 60-70% of NR2A and 70-85% of NR2B subunits were associated in NR1/NR2A or NR1/NR2B di-heteromeric complexes. Isolated di-heteromeric receptor fractions were used to examine NR2A- or NR2B-specific interactions with synapse-associated proteins. Our results indicate that NR2A- or NR2B-containing NMDARs associate similarly with postsynaptic density-95 (PSD-95), synapse-associated protein 102, and PSD-93 at P42. However, NR2A-containing receptors coimmunoprecipitated a greater proportion of the synaptic proteins neuronal nitric oxide synthase, Homer, and beta-catenin. Finally, mass spectrometry analysis of isolated di-heteromeric receptors identified a novel NMDAR interactor, collapsin response mediator protein 2, which preferentially associates with NR2B-containing di-heteromeric NMDARs. In summary, in rat hippocampus, NR2A and NR2B exist primarily in di-heteromeric complexes that interact similarly with PSD-95-related proteins but are associated with different protein complexes.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - 087618/Z/08/Z(United Kingdom)

Regulation of Kv1 channel trafficking by the mamba snake neurotoxin dendrotoxin K.

  • Vacher H
  • FASEB J.
  • 2007 Mar 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

Modulation of voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channel surface expression can profoundly affect neuronal excitability. Some, but not all, mammalian Shaker or Kv1 alpha subunits contain a dominant endoplasmic reticulum (ER) retention signal in their pore region, preventing surface expression of Kv1.1 homotetrameric channels and of heteromeric Kv1 channels containing more than one Kv1.1 subunit. The critical amino acid residues within this ER pore-region retention signal are also critical for high-affinity binding of snake dendrotoxins (DTX). This suggests that ER retention may be mediated by an ER protein with a domain structurally similar to that of DTX. One facet of such a model is that expression of soluble DTX in the ER lumen should compete for binding to the retention protein and allow for surface expression of retained Kv1.1. Here, we show that luminal DTX expression dramatically increased both the level of cell surface Kv1.1 immunofluorescence staining and the proportion of Kv1.1 with processed N-linked oligosaccharides. Electrophysiological analyses showed that luminal DTX expression led to significant increases in Kv1.1 currents. Together, these data showed that luminal DTX expression increases surface expression of functional Kv1.1 homotetrameric channels and support a model whereby a DTX-like ER protein regulates abundance of cell surface Kv1 channels.

Funding information:
  • Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council - BB/E004431/1(United Kingdom)

Phosphorylated cAMP response element-binding protein levels in guinea pig brainstem auditory nuclei after unilateral cochlear ablation.

  • Mo Z
  • J. Neurosci. Res.
  • 2006 May 15

Literature context:


Abstract:

After left unilateral cochlear ablation (UCA) in young adult guinea pigs, the appearance of plasticities in auditory pathways suggested altered gene expression and modified phenotypic behaviors of auditory neurons. Because phosphorylated cyclic-AMP response element-binding protein (CREB-P) is a transcription factor that binds to certain genes to facilitate their expression, CREB-P levels were measured after UCA and correlated with postablation plasticities. After UCA, Western blotting was employed to quantify CREB-P levels and illustrate CREB levels in the anteroventral (AVCN), posteroventral (PVCN), and dorsal (DCN) cochlear nucleus; the lateral (LSO) and medial superior olive (MSO); the medial nucleus of the trapezoid body (MNTB); and the central nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICc) for up to 145 days. We also quantified the levels of several protein synthesis regulators and synaptic markers in the AVCN at 60 days. Sucrose-based extraction buffer improved CREB-P recovery. CREB-P levels became depressed at 3 and 7 postablation days, except in the PVCN, where they were elevated at 7 days, and in the ICc, where they were elevated at both times. At 60 days, CREB-P levels in all the nuclei were elevated. In the AVCN, levels of the protein synthesis regulators and synaptic markers were also elevated at 60 days. By 145 days, CREB-P levels again declined, except in the AVCN, where elevations persisted and increased on the ablated side, and in the ICc, where CREB-P elevations remained. The changes in CREB-P levels coincided with several plasticities in glutamatergic and glycinergic transmitter release and receptor activities, and alterations in neurotrophic support, that developed after UCA. These findings suggest that UCA altered CREB-P levels, which in turn might have contributed to plasticities that appear after UCA.

Funding information:
  • Wellcome Trust - 082372(United Kingdom)

[Hygiene phase of periodontal therapy].

  • Ramfjord SP
  • Phillip J
  • 1990 Aug 1

Literature context:


Abstract:

Funding information:
  • NIGMS NIH HHS - GM-069801(United States)