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Sample records for a5 subunit-containing gabaa

  1. Tonic inhibition in spinal ventral horn interneurons mediated by α5 subunit-containing GABA(A) receptors.

    PubMed

    Castro, Alberto; Aguilar, Justo; González-Ramírez, Ricardo; Loeza-Alcocer, Emanuel; Canto-Bustos, Martha; Felix, Ricardo; Delgado-Lezama, Rodolfo

    2011-08-19

    GABA(A) receptors mediate synaptic and tonic inhibition in many neurons of the central nervous system. These receptors can be constructed from a range of different subunits deriving from seven identified families. Among these subunits, α(5) has been shown to mediate GABAergic tonic inhibitory currents in neurons from supraspinal nuclei. Likewise, immunohistochemical and in situ hybridization studies have shown the presence of the α(5) subunit in spinal cord neurons, though almost nothing is known about its function. In the present report, using slices of the adult turtle spinal cord as a model system we have recorded a tonic inhibitory current in ventral horn interneurons (VHIs) and determined the functional contribution of the α(5) subunit-containing GABA(A) receptors to this current. Patch clamp studies show that the GABAergic tonic inhibitory current in VHIs is not affected by the application of antagonists of the α(4/6) subunit-containing GABA(A) receptors, but is sensitive to L-655708, an antagonist of the GABA(A) receptors containing α(5) subunits. Last, by using RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry we confirmed the expression of the α(5) subunit in the turtle spinal cord. Together, these results suggest that GABA(A) receptors containing the α(5) subunit mediate the tonic inhibitory currents observed in VHIs. PMID:21798246

  2. Reinforcing effects of compounds lacking intrinsic efficacy at α1 subunit-containing GABAA receptor subtypes in midazolam- but not cocaine-experienced rhesus monkeys.

    PubMed

    Shinday, Nina M; Sawyer, Eileen K; Fischer, Bradford D; Platt, Donna M; Licata, Stephanie C; Atack, John R; Dawson, Gerard R; Reynolds, David S; Rowlett, James K

    2013-05-01

    Benzodiazepines are prescribed widely but their utility is limited by unwanted side effects, including abuse potential. The mechanisms underlying the abuse-related effects of benzodiazepines are not well understood, although α1 subunit-containing GABAA receptors have been proposed to have a critical role. Here, we examine the reinforcing effects of several compounds that vary with respect to intrinsic efficacy at α2, α3, and α5 subunit-containing GABAA receptors but lack efficacy at α1 subunit-containing GABAA receptors ('α1-sparing compounds'): MRK-623 (functional selectivity for α2/α3 subunit-containing receptors), TPA023B (functional selectivity for α2/α3/α5 subunit-containing receptors), and TP003 (functional selectivity for α3 subunit-containing receptors). The reinforcing effects of the α1-sparing compounds were compared with those of the non-selective benzodiazepine receptor partial agonist MRK-696, and non-selective benzodiazepine receptor full agonists, midazolam and lorazepam, in rhesus monkeys trained to self-administer midazolam or cocaine, under a progressive-ratio schedule of intravenous (i.v.) drug injection. The α1-sparing compounds were self-administered significantly above vehicle levels in monkeys maintained under a midazolam baseline, but not under a cocaine baseline over the dose ranges tested. Importantly, TP003 had significant reinforcing effects, albeit at lower levels of self-administration than non-selective benzodiazepine receptor agonists. Together, these results suggest that α1 subunit-containing GABAA receptors may have a role in the reinforcing effects of benzodiazepine-type compounds in monkeys with a history of stimulant self-administration, whereas α3 subunit-containing GABAA receptors may be important mediators of the reinforcing effects of benzodiazepine-type compounds in animals with a history of sedative-anxiolytic/benzodiazepine self-administration. PMID:23303046

  3. Non-neuronal, slow GABA signalling in the ventrobasal thalamus targets δ-subunit-containing GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Jiménez-González, Cristina; Pirttimaki, Tiina; Cope, David W; Parri, H R

    2011-01-01

    The rodent ventrobasal (VB) thalamus contains a relatively uniform population of thalamocortical (TC) neurons that receive glutamatergic input from the vibrissae and the somatosensory cortex, and inhibitory input from the nucleus reticularis thalami (nRT). In this study we describe γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptor-dependent slow outward currents (SOCs) in TC neurons that are distinct from fast inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) and tonic currents. SOCs occurred spontaneously or could be evoked by hypo-osmotic stimulus, and were not blocked by tetrodotoxin, removal of extracellular Ca2+ or bafilomycin A1, indicating a non-synaptic, non-vesicular GABA origin. SOCs were more common in TC neurons of the VB compared with the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus, and were rarely observed in nRT neurons, whilst SOC frequency in the VB increased with age. Application of THIP, a selective agonist at δ-subunit-containing GABAA receptors, occluded SOCs, whereas the benzodiazepine site inverse agonist β-CCB had no effect, but did inhibit spontaneous and evoked IPSCs. In addition, the occurrence of SOCs was reduced in mice lacking the δ-subunit, and their kinetics were also altered. The anti-epileptic drug vigabatrin increased SOC frequency in a time-dependent manner, but this effect was not due to reversal of GABA transporters. Together, these data indicate that SOCs in TC neurons arise from astrocytic GABA release, and are mediated by δ-subunit-containing GABAA receptors. Furthermore, these findings suggest that the therapeutic action of vigabatrin may occur through the augmentation of this astrocyte–neuron interaction, and highlight the importance of glial cells in CNS (patho) physiology. PMID:21395866

  4. Extrasynaptic α6 Subunit-Containing GABAA Receptors Modulate Excitability in Turtle Spinal Motoneurons

    PubMed Central

    Andres, Carmen; Aguilar, Justo; González-Ramírez, Ricardo; Elias-Viñas, David; Felix, Ricardo; Delgado-Lezama, Rodolfo

    2014-01-01

    Motoneurons are furnished with a vast repertoire of ionotropic and metabotropic receptors as well as ion channels responsible for maintaining the resting membrane potential and involved in the regulation of the mechanisms underlying its membrane excitability and firing properties. Among them, the GABAA receptors, which respond to GABA binding by allowing the flow of Cl− ions across the membrane, mediate two distinct forms of inhibition in the mature nervous system, phasic and tonic, upon activation of synaptic or extrasynaptic receptors, respectively. In a previous work we showed that furosemide facilitates the monosynaptic reflex without affecting the dorsal root potential. Our data also revealed a tonic inhibition mediated by GABAA receptors activated in motoneurons by ambient GABA. These data suggested that the high affinity GABAA extrasynaptic receptors may have an important role in motor control, though the molecular nature of these receptors was not determined. By combining electrophysiological, immunofluorescence and molecular biology techniques with pharmacological tools here we show that GABAA receptors containing the α6 subunit are expressed in adult turtle spinal motoneurons and can function as extrasynaptic receptors responsible for tonic inhibition. These results expand our understanding of the role of GABAA receptors in motoneuron tonic inhibition. PMID:25531288

  5. Extrasynaptic α6 subunit-containing GABAA receptors modulate excitability in turtle spinal motoneurons.

    PubMed

    Andres, Carmen; Aguilar, Justo; González-Ramírez, Ricardo; Elias-Viñas, David; Felix, Ricardo; Delgado-Lezama, Rodolfo

    2014-01-01

    Motoneurons are furnished with a vast repertoire of ionotropic and metabotropic receptors as well as ion channels responsible for maintaining the resting membrane potential and involved in the regulation of the mechanisms underlying its membrane excitability and firing properties. Among them, the GABAA receptors, which respond to GABA binding by allowing the flow of Cl- ions across the membrane, mediate two distinct forms of inhibition in the mature nervous system, phasic and tonic, upon activation of synaptic or extrasynaptic receptors, respectively. In a previous work we showed that furosemide facilitates the monosynaptic reflex without affecting the dorsal root potential. Our data also revealed a tonic inhibition mediated by GABAA receptors activated in motoneurons by ambient GABA. These data suggested that the high affinity GABAA extrasynaptic receptors may have an important role in motor control, though the molecular nature of these receptors was not determined. By combining electrophysiological, immunofluorescence and molecular biology techniques with pharmacological tools here we show that GABAA receptors containing the α6 subunit are expressed in adult turtle spinal motoneurons and can function as extrasynaptic receptors responsible for tonic inhibition. These results expand our understanding of the role of GABAA receptors in motoneuron tonic inhibition. PMID:25531288

  6. Oxytocin prevents ethanol actions at δ subunit-containing GABAA receptors and attenuates ethanol-induced motor impairment in rats

    PubMed Central

    Bowen, Michael T.; Peters, Sebastian T.; Absalom, Nathan; Chebib, Mary; Neumann, Inga D.; McGregor, Iain S.

    2015-01-01

    Even moderate doses of alcohol cause considerable impairment of motor coordination, an effect that substantially involves potentiation of GABAergic activity at δ subunit-containing GABAA receptors (δ-GABAARs). Here, we demonstrate that oxytocin selectively attenuates ethanol-induced motor impairment and ethanol-induced increases in GABAergic activity at δ-GABAARs and that this effect does not involve the oxytocin receptor. Specifically, oxytocin (1 µg i.c.v.) given before ethanol (1.5 g/kg i.p.) attenuated the sedation and ataxia induced by ethanol in the open-field locomotor test, wire-hanging test, and righting-reflex test in male rats. Using two-electrode voltage-clamp electrophysiology in Xenopus oocytes, oxytocin was found to completely block ethanol-enhanced activity at α4β1δ and α4β3δ recombinant GABAARs. Conversely, ethanol had no effect when applied to α4β1 or α4β3 cells, demonstrating the critical presence of the δ subunit in this effect. Oxytocin had no effect on the motor impairment or in vitro effects induced by the δ-selective GABAAR agonist 4,5,6,7-tetrahydroisoxazolo(5,4-c)pyridin-3-ol, which binds at a different site on δ-GABAARs than ethanol. Vasopressin, which is a nonapeptide with substantial structural similarity to oxytocin, did not alter ethanol effects at δ-GABAARs. This pattern of results confirms the specificity of the interaction between oxytocin and ethanol at δ-GABAARs. Finally, our in vitro constructs did not express any oxytocin receptors, meaning that the observed interactions occur directly at δ-GABAARs. The profound and direct interaction observed between oxytocin and ethanol at the behavioral and cellular level may have relevance for the development of novel therapeutics for alcohol intoxication and dependence. PMID:25713389

  7. Oxytocin prevents ethanol actions at δ subunit-containing GABAA receptors and attenuates ethanol-induced motor impairment in rats.

    PubMed

    Bowen, Michael T; Peters, Sebastian T; Absalom, Nathan; Chebib, Mary; Neumann, Inga D; McGregor, Iain S

    2015-03-10

    Even moderate doses of alcohol cause considerable impairment of motor coordination, an effect that substantially involves potentiation of GABAergic activity at δ subunit-containing GABA(A) receptors (δ-GABA(A)Rs). Here, we demonstrate that oxytocin selectively attenuates ethanol-induced motor impairment and ethanol-induced increases in GABAergic activity at δ-GABA(A)Rs and that this effect does not involve the oxytocin receptor. Specifically, oxytocin (1 µg i.c.v.) given before ethanol (1.5 g/kg i.p.) attenuated the sedation and ataxia induced by ethanol in the open-field locomotor test, wire-hanging test, and righting-reflex test in male rats. Using two-electrode voltage-clamp electrophysiology in Xenopus oocytes, oxytocin was found to completely block ethanol-enhanced activity at α4β1δ and α4β3δ recombinant GABA(A)Rs. Conversely, ethanol had no effect when applied to α4β1 or α4β3 cells, demonstrating the critical presence of the δ subunit in this effect. Oxytocin had no effect on the motor impairment or in vitro effects induced by the δ-selective GABA(A)R agonist 4,5,6,7-tetrahydroisoxazolo(5,4-c)pyridin-3-ol, which binds at a different site on δ-GABA(A)Rs than ethanol. Vasopressin, which is a nonapeptide with substantial structural similarity to oxytocin, did not alter ethanol effects at δ-GABA(A)Rs. This pattern of results confirms the specificity of the interaction between oxytocin and ethanol at δ-GABA(A)Rs. Finally, our in vitro constructs did not express any oxytocin receptors, meaning that the observed interactions occur directly at δ-GABA(A)Rs. The profound and direct interaction observed between oxytocin and ethanol at the behavioral and cellular level may have relevance for the development of novel therapeutics for alcohol intoxication and dependence. PMID:25713389

  8. Etomidate Impairs Long-Term Potentiation In Vitro by Targeting α5-Subunit Containing GABAA Receptors on Nonpyramidal Cells

    PubMed Central

    Rodgers, F. Clifford; Zarnowska, Ewa D.; Laha, Kurt T.; Engin, Elif; Zeller, Anja; Keist, Ruth; Rudolph, Uwe

    2015-01-01

    Previous experiments using genetic and pharmacological manipulations have provided strong evidence that etomidate impairs synaptic plasticity and memory by modulating α5-subunit containing GABAA receptors (α5-GABAARs). Because α5-GABAARs mediate tonic inhibition (TI) in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells and etomidate enhances TI, etomidate enhancement of TI in pyramidal cells has been proposed as the underlying mechanism (Martin et al., 2009). Here we tested this hypothesis by selectively removing α5-GABAARs from pyramidal neurons (CA1–pyr–α5–KO) and comparing the ability of etomidate to enhance TI and block LTP in fl–α5 (WT), global–α5–KO (gl–α5–KO), and CA1–pyr–α5–KO mice. Etomidate suppressed LTP in slices from WT and CA1–pyr–α5–KO but not gl–α5–KO mice. There was a trend toward reduced TI in both gl–α5–KO and CA1–pyr–α5–KO mice, but etomidate enhanced TI to similar levels in all genotypes. The dissociation between effects of etomidate on TI and LTP in gl–α5–KO mice indicates that increased TI in pyramidal neurons is not the mechanism by which etomidate impairs LTP and memory. Rather, the ability of etomidate to block LTP in WT and CA1–pyr–α5–KO mice, but not in gl–α5–KO mice, points toward α5-GABAARs on nonpyramidal cells as the essential effectors controlling plasticity in this in vitro model of learning and memory. PMID:26134653

  9. The essential role of hippocampal alpha6 subunit-containing GABAA receptors in maternal separation stress-induced adolescent depressive behaviors.

    PubMed

    Yang, Linjie; Xu, Ting; Zhang, Ke; Wei, Zhisheng; Li, Xuran; Huang, Mingfa; Rose, Gregory M; Cai, Xiang

    2016-10-15

    Exposure to early stressful adverse life events such as maternal separation severely impacts the development of the nervous system. Using immunohistochemistry, quantitative PCR and Western blot approaches, we found that alpha6 subunit-containing GABAA receptors (Gabra6-containing GABAA Rs) were expressed on hippocampal interneurons of adolescent rats. Maternal separation stress (MS) from postnatal day 2 to15 significantly reduced Gabra6 expression and provoked depressive behaviors such as anhedonia. Furosemide, the selective antagonist of Gabra6-containing GABAARs, strongly increased peak amplitude of evoked IPSCs at CA3-CA1 synapses and the frequency of miniature IPSPs recorded from CA1 pyramidal cells in naive control animals, and this effect was occluded in MS animals. Knockdown of Gabra6 expression in hippocampus mimicked furosemide's effect and was sufficient to produce similar depressive symptoms that were observed in MS animals. These results indicate that the Gabra6-containing GABAA R is a key modulator of hippocampal synaptic transmission and likely plays a crucial role in the pathophysiology of maternal separation-induced depression. PMID:27388150

  10. Cocaine effects on mouse incentive-learning and human addiction are linked to α2 subunit-containing GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Dixon, Claire I.; Morris, Hannah V.; Breen, Gerome; Desrivieres, Sylvane; Jugurnauth, Sarah; Steiner, Rebecca C.; Vallada, Homero; Guindalini, Camila; Laranjeira, Ronaldo; Messas, Guilherme; Rosahl, Thomas W.; Atack, John R.; Peden, Dianne R.; Belelli, Delia; Lambert, Jeremy J.; King, Sarah L.; Schumann, Gunter; Stephens, David N.

    2010-01-01

    Because GABAA receptors containing α2 subunits are highly represented in areas of the brain, such as nucleus accumbens (NAcc), frontal cortex, and amygdala, regions intimately involved in signaling motivation and reward, we hypothesized that manipulations of this receptor subtype would influence processing of rewards. Voltage-clamp recordings from NAcc medium spiny neurons of mice with α2 gene deletion showed reduced synaptic GABAA receptor-mediated responses. Behaviorally, the deletion abolished cocaine’s ability to potentiate behaviors conditioned to rewards (conditioned reinforcement), and to support behavioral sensitization. In mice with a point mutation in the benzodiazepine binding pocket of α2-GABAA receptors (α2H101R), GABAergic neurotransmission in medium spiny neurons was identical to that of WT (i.e., the mutation was silent), but importantly, receptor function was now facilitated by the atypical benzodiazepine Ro 15-4513 (ethyl 8-amido-5,6-dihydro-5-methyl-6-oxo-4H-imidazo [1,5-a] [1,4] benzodiazepine-3-carboxylate). In α2H101R, but not WT mice, Ro 15-4513 administered directly into the NAcc-stimulated locomotor activity, and when given systemically and repeatedly, induced behavioral sensitization. These data indicate that activation of α2−GABAA receptors (most likely in NAcc) is both necessary and sufficient for behavioral sensitization. Consistent with a role of these receptors in addiction, we found specific markers and haplotypes of the GABRA2 gene to be associated with human cocaine addiction. PMID:20133874

  11. The role of α1 and α5 subunit-containing GABAA receptors in motor impairment induced by benzodiazepines in rats.

    PubMed

    Milić, Marija; Divljaković, Jovana; Rallapalli, Sundari; van Linn, Michael L; Timić, Tamara; Cook, James M; Savić, Miroslav M

    2012-04-01

    Benzodiazepines negatively affect motor coordination and balance and produce myorelaxation. The aim of the present study was to examine the extent to which populations of γ-aminobutyric acid A (GABAA) receptors containing α1 and α5 subunits contribute to these motor-impairing effects in rats. We used the nonselective agonist diazepam and the α1-selective agonist zolpidem, as well as nonselective, α1-subunit and α5-subunit-selective antagonists flumazenil, βCCt, and XLi093, respectively. Ataxia and muscle relaxation were assessed by rotarod and grip strength tests performed 20 min after intraperitoneal treatment. Diazepam (2 mg/kg) induced significant ataxia and muscle relaxation, which were completely prevented by pretreatment with flumazenil (10 mg/kg) and βCCt (20 mg/kg). XLi093 antagonized the myorelaxant, but not the ataxic actions of diazepam. All three doses of zolpidem (1, 2, and 5 mg/kg) produced ataxia, but only the highest dose (5 mg/kg) significantly decreased the grip strength. These effects of zolpidem were reversed by βCCt at doses of 5 and 10 mg/kg, respectively. The present study demonstrates that α1 GABAA receptors mediate ataxia and indirectly contribute to myorelaxation in rats, whereas α5 GABAA receptors contribute significantly, although not dominantly, to muscle relaxation but not ataxia. PMID:22327019

  12. The terpenoids Myrtenol and Verbenol act on δ subunit-containing GABAA receptors and enhance tonic inhibition in dentate gyrus granule cells.

    PubMed

    van Brederode, Johannes; Atak, Sinem; Kessler, Artur; Pischetsrieder, Monika; Villmann, Carmen; Alzheimer, Christian

    2016-08-15

    Sideritis plants and their extracts have been used in traditional medicine as sedatives, anxiolytics and anticonvulsant agents. Pinenes are the most prevalent of the volatile aroma components in Siderites extracts and the pinene metabolites myrtenol and verbenol have been identified as the most potent positive allosteric modulators of synaptic GABAA receptors composed of α1β2 and α1β2γ2 subunits. In view of their therapeutic spectrum, we wondered whether these two terpenoids would also augment tonic GABA currents mediated by extrasynaptic GABAA receptors containing the δ subunit. When we expressed α4β2δ receptors in HEK293 cells, we found that co-application of myrtenol or verbenol enhanced whole-cell current responses to GABA by up to 100%. Consistent with their effects on heterologous α1β2γ2 receptors, we found that myrtenol and verbenol, when co-applied with GABA via local perfusion, increased the amplitude and area of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic potentials (mIPSCs) recorded in whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings from granule cells in the dentate gyrus of mouse hippocampal brain slices. In addition, co-application of terpenoids with GABA was also able to enhance tonic GABA current, measured from the change in baseline current and current noise, compared to GABA perfusion alone. Our results suggest that myrtenol and verbenol act as positive allosteric modulators at synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA receptors, thereby augmenting phasic and tonic GABAergic inhibition. Thus, our study reveals an important pharmacological and therapeutic target of bicyclic monoterpenoids. PMID:27312536

  13. Neurosteroids and GABA-A Receptor Function

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Mingde

    2011-01-01

    Neurosteroids represent a class of endogenous steroids that are synthesized in the brain, the adrenals, and the gonads and have potent and selective effects on the GABAA-receptor. 3α-hydroxy A-ring reduced metabolites of progesterone, deoxycorticosterone, and testosterone are positive modulators of GABAA-receptor in a non-genomic manner. Allopregnanolone (3α-OH-5α-pregnan-20-one), 5α-androstane-3α, 17α-diol (Adiol), and 3α5α-tetrahydrodeoxycorticosterone (3α5α-THDOC) enhance the GABA-mediated Cl- currents acting on a site (or sites) distinct from the GABA, benzodiazepine, barbiturate, and picrotoxin binding sites. 3α5α-P and 3α5α-THDOC potentiate synaptic GABAA-receptor function and activate δ-subunit containing extrasynaptic receptors that mediate tonic currents. On the contrary, 3β-OH pregnane steroids and pregnenolone sulfate (PS) are GABAA-receptor antagonists and induce activation-dependent inhibition of the receptor. The activities of neurosteroid are dependent on brain regions and types of neurons. In addition to the slow genomic action of the parent steroids, the non-genomic, and rapid actions of neurosteroids play a significant role in the GABAA-receptor function and shift in mood and memory function. This review describes molecular mechanisms underlying neurosteroid action on the GABAA-receptor, mood changes, and cognitive functions. PMID:22654809

  14. Interneuron- and GABAA receptor-specific inhibitory synaptic plasticity in cerebellar Purkinje cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Qionger; Duguid, Ian; Clark, Beverley; Panzanelli, Patrizia; Patel, Bijal; Thomas, Philip; Fritschy, Jean-Marc; Smart, Trevor G.

    2015-07-01

    Inhibitory synaptic plasticity is important for shaping both neuronal excitability and network activity. Here we investigate the input and GABAA receptor subunit specificity of inhibitory synaptic plasticity by studying cerebellar interneuron-Purkinje cell (PC) synapses. Depolarizing PCs initiated a long-lasting increase in GABA-mediated synaptic currents. By stimulating individual interneurons, this plasticity was observed at somatodendritic basket cell synapses, but not at distal dendritic stellate cell synapses. Basket cell synapses predominantly express β2-subunit-containing GABAA receptors; deletion of the β2-subunit ablates this plasticity, demonstrating its reliance on GABAA receptor subunit composition. The increase in synaptic currents is dependent upon an increase in newly synthesized cell surface synaptic GABAA receptors and is abolished by preventing CaMKII phosphorylation of GABAA receptors. Our results reveal a novel GABAA receptor subunit- and input-specific form of inhibitory synaptic plasticity that regulates the temporal firing pattern of the principal output cells of the cerebellum.

  15. Selective targeting of the α5-subunit of GABAA receptors relaxes airway smooth muscle and inhibits cellular calcium handling

    PubMed Central

    Yocum, Gene T.; Siviski, Matthew E.; Yim, Peter D.; Fu, Xiao Wen; Poe, Michael M.; Cook, James M.; Harrison, Neil; Perez-Zoghbi, Jose; Emala, Charles W.

    2015-01-01

    The clinical need for novel bronchodilators for the treatment of bronchoconstrictive diseases remains a major medical issue. Modulation of airway smooth muscle (ASM) chloride via GABAA receptor activation to achieve relaxation of precontracted ASM represents a potentially beneficial therapeutic option. Since human ASM GABAA receptors express only the α4- and α5-subunits, there is an opportunity to selectively target ASM GABAA receptors to improve drug efficacy and minimize side effects. Recently, a novel compound (R)-ethyl8-ethynyl-6-(2-fluorophenyl)-4-methyl-4H-benzo[f]imidazo[1,5-a][1,4] diazepine-3-carboxylate (SH-053-2′F-R-CH3) with allosteric selectivity for α5-subunit containing GABAA receptors has become available. We questioned whether this novel GABAA α5-selective ligand relaxes ASM and affects intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) regulation. Immunohistochemical staining localized the GABAA α5-subunit to human ASM. The selective GABAA α5 ligand SH-053-2′F-R-CH3 relaxes precontracted intact ASM; increases GABA-activated chloride currents in human ASM cells in voltage-clamp electrophysiology studies; and attenuates bradykinin-induced increases in [Ca2+]i, store-operated Ca2+ entry, and methacholine-induced Ca2+ oscillations in peripheral murine lung slices. In conclusion, selective subunit targeting of endogenous α5-subunit containing GABAA receptors on ASM may represent a novel therapeutic option to treat severe bronchospasm. PMID:25659897

  16. Selective targeting of the α5-subunit of GABAA receptors relaxes airway smooth muscle and inhibits cellular calcium handling.

    PubMed

    Gallos, George; Yocum, Gene T; Siviski, Matthew E; Yim, Peter D; Fu, Xiao Wen; Poe, Michael M; Cook, James M; Harrison, Neil; Perez-Zoghbi, Jose; Emala, Charles W

    2015-05-01

    The clinical need for novel bronchodilators for the treatment of bronchoconstrictive diseases remains a major medical issue. Modulation of airway smooth muscle (ASM) chloride via GABAA receptor activation to achieve relaxation of precontracted ASM represents a potentially beneficial therapeutic option. Since human ASM GABAA receptors express only the α4- and α5-subunits, there is an opportunity to selectively target ASM GABAA receptors to improve drug efficacy and minimize side effects. Recently, a novel compound (R)-ethyl8-ethynyl-6-(2-fluorophenyl)-4-methyl-4H-benzo[f]imidazo[1,5-a][1,4] diazepine-3-carboxylate (SH-053-2'F-R-CH3) with allosteric selectivity for α5-subunit containing GABAA receptors has become available. We questioned whether this novel GABAA α5-selective ligand relaxes ASM and affects intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)]i) regulation. Immunohistochemical staining localized the GABAA α5-subunit to human ASM. The selective GABAA α5 ligand SH-053-2'F-R-CH3 relaxes precontracted intact ASM; increases GABA-activated chloride currents in human ASM cells in voltage-clamp electrophysiology studies; and attenuates bradykinin-induced increases in [Ca(2+)]i, store-operated Ca(2+) entry, and methacholine-induced Ca(2+) oscillations in peripheral murine lung slices. In conclusion, selective subunit targeting of endogenous α5-subunit containing GABAA receptors on ASM may represent a novel therapeutic option to treat severe bronchospasm. PMID:25659897

  17. Daily Isoflurane Exposure Increases Barbiturate Insensitivity in Medullary Respiratory and Cortical Neurons via Expression of ε-Subunit Containing GABA ARs

    PubMed Central

    Hengen, Keith B.; Nelson, Nathan R.; Stang, Kyle M.; Johnson, Stephen M.; Smith, Stephanie M.; Watters, Jyoti J.; Mitchell, Gordon S.; Behan, Mary

    2015-01-01

    The parameters governing GABAA receptor subtype expression patterns are not well understood, although significant shifts in subunit expression may support key physiological events. For example, the respiratory control network in pregnant rats becomes relatively insensitive to barbiturates due to increased expression of ε-subunit-containing GABAARs in the ventral respiratory column. We hypothesized that this plasticity may be a compensatory response to a chronic increase in inhibitory tone caused by increased central neurosteroid levels. Thus, we tested whether increased inhibitory tone was sufficient to induce ε-subunit upregulation on respiratory and cortical neurons in adult rats. Chronic intermittent increases in inhibitory tone in male and female rats was induced via daily 5-min exposures to 3% isoflurane. After 7d of treatment, phrenic burst frequency was less sensitive to barbiturate in isoflurane-treated male and female rats in vivo. Neurons in the ventral respiratory group and cortex were less sensitive to pentobarbital in vitro following 7d and 30d of intermittent isoflurane-exposure in both male and female rats. The pentobarbital insensitivity in 7d isoflurane-treated rats was reversible after another 7d. We hypothesize that increased inhibitory tone in the respiratory control network and cortex causes a compensatory increase in ε-subunit-containing GABAARs. PMID:25748028

  18. Dihydropyrimidinone positive modulation of delta-subunit-containing gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors, including an epilepsy-linked mutant variant.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Ryan W; Mabry, John; Polisar, Jason G; Eagen, Kyle P; Ganem, Bruce; Hess, George P

    2010-06-15

    Gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors (GABA(A) receptors) are ligand-gated chloride channels that play a central role in signal transmission within the mammalian central nervous system. Compounds that modulate specific GABA(A) receptor subtypes containing the delta-subunit are scarce but would be valuable research tools and starting points for potential therapeutic agents. Here we report a class of dihydropyrimidinone (DHPM) heterocycles that preferentially potentiate peak currents of recombinant GABA(A) receptor subtypes containing the delta-subunit expressed in HEK293T cells. Using the three-component Biginelli reaction, 13 DHPMs with structural features similar to those of the barbiturate phenobarbital were synthesized; one DHPM used (monastrol) is commercially available. An up to approximately 3-fold increase in the current from recombinant alpha1beta2delta receptors was observed with the DHPM compound JM-II-43A or monastrol when co-applied with saturating GABA concentrations, similar to the current potentiation observed with the nonselective potentiating compounds phenobarbital and tracazolate. No agonist activity was observed for the DHPMs at the concentrations tested. A kinetic model was used in conjunction with dose-dependent measurements to calculate apparent dissociation constant values for JM-II-43A (400 muM) and monastrol (200 microM) at saturating GABA concentrations. We examined recombinant receptors composed of combinations of subunits alpha1, alpha4, alpha5, alpha6, beta2, beta3, gamma2L, and delta with JM-II-43A to demonstrate the preference for potentiation of delta-subunit-containing receptors. Lastly, reduced currents from receptors containing the mutated delta(E177A) subunit, described by Dibbens et al. [(2004) Hum. Mol. Genet. 13, 1315-1319] as a heritable susceptibility allele for generalized epilepsy with febrile seizures plus, are also potentiated by these DHPMs. PMID:20450160

  19. Ethanol acts directly on extrasynaptic subtypes of GABAA receptors to increase tonic inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Santhakumar, Vijayalakshmi; Wallner, Martin; Otis, Thomas S.

    2007-01-01

    Based on the similarity of ethanol intoxication to the behavioral effects of drugs known to target GABAA receptors (GABARs) it has been suspected for decades that ethanol facilitates the activity of GABA. Even so, it has been surprisingly difficult to identify molecular targets of ethanol. Research conducted over the past several years suggests that a subclass of GABARs (those containing δ subunits) responds in a relevant concentration range to ethanol. Although δ subunit-containing GABARs are not ubiquitously expressed at inhibitory synapses like their γ subunit-containing, synaptic counterparts, they are found in many neurons in extrasynaptic locations. Here they give rise to a tonic form of inhibition that can potently suppress neuronal excitability. Studies have shown that both recombinant and native δ subunit-containing GABARs: 1) are modulated by behaviorally-relevant (i.e. low millimolar) concentrations of ethanol, 2) directly bind ethanol over the same concentration range, 3) show altered function upon single amino substitutions linked to changes in behavioral responsiveness to ethanol, and 4) are a site of action of Ro15-4513, a competitive antagonist of ethanol binding and a drug which prevents many of the behavioral aspects of ethanol intoxication. Despite such comprehensive evidence, however, the field is not free from controversy. This review evaluates published data for and against a central role of δ subunit-containing GABARs in ethanol actions and suggests future directions that might help settle points of controversy. PMID:17591544

  20. Identification and characterization of GABA(A) receptor autoantibodies in autoimmune encephalitis.

    PubMed

    Ohkawa, Toshika; Satake, Shin'Ichiro; Yokoi, Norihiko; Miyazaki, Yu; Ohshita, Tomohiko; Sobue, Gen; Takashima, Hiroshi; Watanabe, Osamu; Fukata, Yuko; Fukata, Masaki

    2014-06-11

    Autoimmune forms of encephalitis have been associated with autoantibodies against synaptic cell surface antigens such as NMDA- and AMPA-type glutamate receptors, GABA(B) receptor, and LGI1. However, it remains unclear how many synaptic autoantigens are yet to be defined. Using immunoproteomics, we identified autoantibodies against the GABA(A) receptor in human sera from two patients diagnosed with encephalitis who presented with cognitive impairment and multifocal brain MRI abnormalities. Both patients had antibodies directed against the extracellular epitope of the β3 subunit of the GABA(A) receptor. The β3-subunit-containing GABA(A) receptor was a major target of the patients' serum antibodies in rat hippocampal neurons because the serum reactivity to the neuronal surface was greatly decreased by 80% when the β3 subunit was knocked down. Our developed multiplex ELISA testing showed that both patients had similar levels of GABA(A) receptor antibodies, one patient also had a low level of LGI1 antibodies, and the other also had CASPR2 antibodies. Application of the patients' serum at the time of symptom presentation of encephalitis to rat hippocampal neuron cultures specifically decreased both synaptic and surface GABA(A) receptors. Furthermore, treatment of neurons with the patients' serum selectively reduced miniature IPSC amplitude and frequency without affecting miniature EPSCs. These results strongly suggest that the patients' GABA(A) receptor antibodies play a central role in the patients' symptoms. Therefore, this study establishes anti-GABA(A) receptor encephalitis and expands the pathogenic roles of GABA(A) receptor autoantibodies. PMID:24920620

  1. Valerenic acid derivatives as novel subunit-selective GABAA receptor ligands –in vitro and in vivo characterization

    PubMed Central

    Khom, S; Strommer, B; Ramharter, J; Schwarz, T; Schwarzer, C; Erker, T; Ecker, GF; Mulzer, J; Hering, S

    2010-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Subunit-specific modulators of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) type A (GABAA) receptors can help to assess the physiological function of receptors with different subunit composition and also provide the basis for the development of new drugs. Valerenic acid (VA) was recently identified as a β2/3 subunit-specific modulator of GABAA receptors with anxiolytic potential. The aim of the present study was to generate VA derivatives as novel GABAA receptor modulators and to gain insight into the structure–activity relation of this molecule. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH The carboxyl group of VA was substituted by an uncharged amide or amides with different chain length. Modulation of GABAA receptors composed of different subunit compositions by the VA derivatives was studied in Xenopus oocytes by means of the two-microelectrode voltage-clamp technique. Half-maximal stimulation of GABA-induced chloride currents (IGABA) through GABAA receptors (EC50) and efficacies (maximal stimulation of IGABA) were estimated. Anxiolytic activity of the VA derivatives was studied in mice, applying the elevated plus maze test. KEY RESULTS Valerenic acid amide (VA-A) displayed the highest efficacy (more than twofold greater IGABA enhancement than VA) and highest potency (EC50= 13.7 ± 2.3 µM) on α1β3 receptors. Higher efficacy and potency of VA-A were also observed on α1β2γ2s and α3β3γ2s receptors. Anxiolytic effects were most pronounced for VA-A. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS Valerenic acid derivatives with higher efficacy and affinity can be generated. Greater in vitro action of the amide derivative correlated with a more pronounced anxiolytic effect in vivo. The data give further confidence in targeting β3 subunit containing GABAA receptors for development of anxiolytics. PMID:20718740

  2. Mice with targeted genetic reduction of GABA(A) receptor alpha1 subunits display performance differences in Morris water maze tasks.

    PubMed

    Berry, Raymond B; Werner, David F; Wang, Xiaofei; Jablonski, Monica M; Homanics, Gregg E; Mittleman, Guy; Matthews, Douglas B

    2008-10-01

    Recent research has begun to demonstrate that specific subunits of GABA(A) receptors may be involved in the normal expression of specific behaviors. The present research used mice with GABA(A) receptors whose alpha1 subunits contained mutations of serine 270 to histidine and leucine 277 to alanine in the TM2 region. The purpose was an attempt to examine the possible role that this particular subunit may have in learning the spatial and nonspatial version of the Morris water maze task. Mutant animals, compared to controls, displayed elevated levels of pool circling in both the spatial task and the nonspatial task. These results suggested that normal performance of the spatial and nonspatial water maze tasks may be dependent upon a natural alpha1 subunit array. PMID:18625330

  3. General Anesthetic Actions on GABAA Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, Paul S; Kolesky, Scott E; Jenkins, Andrew

    2010-01-01

    General anesthetic drugs interact with many receptors in the nervous system, but only a handful of these interactions are critical for producing anesthesia. Over the last 20 years, neuropharmacologists have revealed that one of the most important target sites for general anesthetics is the GABAA receptor. In this review we will discuss what is known about anesthetic – GABAA receptor interactions. PMID:20808541

  4. Early postnatal GABAA receptor modulation reverses deficits in neuronal maturation in a conditional neurodevelopmental mouse model of DISC1

    PubMed Central

    Saito, Atsushi; Taniguchi, Yu; Rannals, Matthew D.; Merfeld, Emily B.; Ballinger, Michael D.; Koga, Minori; Ohtani, Yoshikazu; Gurley, David A.; Sedlak, Thomas W.; Cross, Alan; Moss, Stephen J.; Brandon, Nicholas J.; Maher, Brady J.; Kamiya, Atsushi

    2015-01-01

    Exploring drug targets based on disease-associated molecular mechanisms during development is crucial for the generation of novel prevention and treatment strategies for neurodevelopmental psychiatric conditions. We report that prefrontal cortex-specific postnatal knockdown of DISC1 via in utero electroporation combined with an inducible knockdown expression system drives deficits in synaptic GABAA function and dendritic development in pyramidal neurons, as well as abnormalities in sensorimotor gating, albeit without profound memory deficits. We show for the first time that DISC1 is specifically involved in regulating cell surface expression of α2 subunit-containing GABAA receptors in immature developing neurons, but not after full maturation. Notably, pharmacological intervention with α2/3 subtype-selective GABAA receptor positive allosteric modulators during the early postnatal period ameliorates dendritic deficits and behavioral abnormalities induced by knockdown of DISC1. These findings highlight a critical role of DISC1-mediated disruption of postnatal GABA signaling in aberrant prefrontal cortex maturation and function. PMID:26728564

  5. GluN2B subunit-containing NMDA receptor antagonists prevent Abeta-mediated synaptic plasticity disruption in vivo.

    PubMed

    Hu, Neng-Wei; Klyubin, Igor; Anwyl, Roger; Anwy, Roger; Rowan, Michael J

    2009-12-01

    Currently, treatment with the relatively low-affinity NMDA receptor antagonist memantine provides limited benefit in Alzheimer's disease (AD). One probable dose-limiting factor in the use of memantine is the inhibition of NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity mechanisms believed to underlie certain forms of memory. Moreover, amyloid-beta protein (Abeta) oligomers that are implicated in causing the cognitive deficits of AD potently inhibit this form of plasticity. Here we examined if subtype-preferring NMDA receptor antagonists could preferentially protect against the inhibition of NMDA receptor-dependent plasticity of excitatory synaptic transmission by Abeta in the hippocampus in vivo. Using doses that did not affect control plasticity, antagonists selective for NMDA receptors containing GluN2B but not other GluN2 subunits prevented Abeta(1-42) -mediated inhibition of plasticity. Evidence that the proinflammatory cytokine TNFalpha mediates this deleterious action of Ass was provided by the ability of TNFalpha antagonists to prevent Abeta(1-42) inhibition of plasticity and the abrogation of a similar disruptive effect of TNFalpha using a GluN2B-selective antagonist. Moreover, at nearby synapses that were resistant to the inhibitory effect of TNFalpha, Abeta(1-42) did not significantly affect plasticity. These findings suggest that preferentially targeting GluN2B subunit-containing NMDARs may provide an effective means of preventing cognitive deficits in early Alzheimer's disease. PMID:19918059

  6. GluN2A and GluN2B subunit-containing NMDA receptors in hippocampal plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Shipton, Olivia A.; Paulsen, Ole

    2014-01-01

    N-Methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR)-dependent synaptic plasticity is a strong candidate to mediate learning and memory processes that require the hippocampus. This plasticity is bidirectional, and how the same receptor can mediate opposite changes in synaptic weights remains a conundrum. It has been suggested that the NMDAR subunit composition could be involved. Specifically, one subunit composition of NMDARs would be responsible for the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP), whereas NMDARs with a different subunit composition would be engaged in the induction of long-term depression (LTD). Unfortunately, the results from studies that have investigated this hypothesis are contradictory, particularly in relation to LTD. Nevertheless, current evidence does suggest that the GluN2B subunit might be particularly important for plasticity and may make a synapse bidirectionally malleable. In particular, we conclude that the presence of GluN2B subunit-containing NMDARs at the postsynaptic density might be a necessary, though not a sufficient, condition for the strengthening of individual synapses. This is owing to the interaction of GluN2B with calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) and is distinct from its contribution as an ion channel. PMID:24298164

  7. GABAA receptor pharmacology of fluorinated derivatives of the novel sedative-hypnotic pyrazolopyrimidine indiplon.

    PubMed

    Wegner, Florian; Deuther-Conrad, Winnie; Scheunemann, Matthias; Brust, Peter; Fischer, Steffen; Hiller, Achim; Diekers, Michael; Strecker, Karl; Wohlfarth, Kai; Allgaier, Clemens; Steinbach, Jörg; Hoepping, Alexander

    2008-02-01

    The function of gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors (GABA(A) receptors) is enhanced by various clinically important drugs including benzodiazepines that act on an allosteric site formed at the interface between the alpha and gamma subunits. In contrast to classical benzodiazepines, the novel pyrazolopyrimidine indiplon (N-methyl-N-{3-[7-(thiophene-2-carbonyl)-1,5,9-triazabicyclo[4.3.0]nona-2,4,6,8-tetraen-2-yl]phenyl}acetamide; N-methyl-N-{3-[3-(thiophene-2-carbonyl)-pyrazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidine-7-yl]phenyl}-acetamide) demonstrates relative binding selectivity for the alpha1 subunit containing receptor subtypes, which are the most frequently expressed in the mammalian central nervous system. To investigate the pharmacological properties at GABA(A) receptors and to promote the development of alpha1 subunit selective radiotracers for positron emission tomography imaging, we have started with the evaluation of various fluorinated indiplon derivatives. Binding affinities were determined in homogenates from newborn and adult rats suggesting an alpha1 preference of the reference compounds indiplon, zaleplon as well as for all newly synthesized indiplon derivatives. In homogenated cerebellar tissue obtained from adult rat brain, known to primarily express alpha1 containing GABA(A) receptors, the high affinity of the basic indiplon structure was only slightly affected by an elongation of the alkyl substituent of the amide N from methyl (indiplon; K(i) 3.1 nM) via ethyl (2a, N-(2-fluoro-ethyl)-N-{3-[3-(thiophene-2-carbonyl)-pyrazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidine-7-yl]phenyl}-acetamide; K(i) 5.4 nM) to propyl (2b, N-(3-fluoro-propyl)-N-{3-[3-(thiophene-2-carbonyl)-pyrazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidine-7-yl]phenyl}-acetamide; K(i) 2.4 nM). Whole cell patch-clamp recordings at neuronal and recombinant GABA(A) receptors indicated that the fluorinated derivatives 2a and 2b have a high potency at alpha1beta3gamma2L isoforms comparable to indiplon (EC(50): 105, 158, and 81 nM, respectively), with 2b

  8. Ethanol reduces GABAA alpha1 subunit receptor surface expression by a protein kinase Cgamma-dependent mechanism in cultured cerebral cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Sandeep; Suryanarayanan, Asha; Boyd, Kevin N; Comerford, Chris E; Lai, Marvin A; Ren, Qinglu; Morrow, A Leslie

    2010-05-01

    Prolonged ethanol exposure causes central nervous system hyperexcitability that involves a loss of GABAergic inhibition. We previously demonstrated that long-term ethanol exposure enhances the internalization of synaptic GABA(A) receptors composed of alpha1beta2/3gamma2 subunits. However, the mechanisms of ethanol-mediated internalization are unknown. This study explored the effect of ethanol on surface expression of GABA(A) alpha1 subunit-containing receptors in cultured cerebral cortical neurons and the role of protein kinase C (PKC) beta, gamma, and epsilon isoforms in their trafficking. Cultured neurons were prepared from rat pups on postnatal day 1 and maintained for 18 days. Cells were exposed to ethanol, and surface receptors were isolated by biotinylation and P2 fractionation, whereas functional analysis was conducted by whole-cell patch-clamp recording of GABA- and zolpidem-evoked responses. Ethanol exposure for 4 h decreased biotinylated surface expression of GABA(A) receptor alpha1 subunits and reduced zolpidem (100 nM) enhancement of GABA-evoked currents. The PKC activator phorbol-12,13-dibutyrate mimicked the effect of ethanol, and the selective PKC inhibitor calphostin C prevented ethanol-induced internalization of these receptors. Ethanol exposure for 4 h also increased the colocalization and coimmunoprecipitation of PKCgamma with alpha1 subunits, whereas PKCbeta/alpha1 association and PKCepsilon/alpha1 colocalization were not altered by ethanol exposure. Selective PKCgamma inhibition by transfection of selective PKCgamma small interfering RNAs blocked ethanol-induced internalization of GABA(A) receptor alpha1 subunits, whereas PKCbeta inhibition using pseudo-PKCbeta had no effect. These findings suggest that ethanol exposure selectively alters PKCgamma translocation to GABA(A) receptors and PKCgamma regulates GABA(A) alpha1 receptor trafficking after ethanol exposure. PMID:20159950

  9. Neurosteroid Agonist at GABAA Receptor Induces Persistent Neuroplasticity in VTA Dopamine Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Vashchinkina, Elena; Manner, Aino K; Vekovischeva, Olga; Hollander, Bjørnar den; Uusi-Oukari, Mikko; Aitta-aho, Teemu; Korpi, Esa R

    2014-01-01

    The main fast-acting inhibitory receptors in the mammalian brain are γ-aminobutyric acid type-A (GABAA) receptors for which neurosteroids, a subclass of steroids synthesized de novo in the brain, constitute a group of endogenous ligands with the most potent positive modulatory actions known. Neurosteroids can act on all subtypes of GABAA receptors, with a preference for δ-subunit-containing receptors that mediate extrasynaptic tonic inhibition. Pathological conditions characterized by emotional and motivational disturbances are often associated with perturbation in the levels of endogenous neurosteroids. We studied the effects of ganaxolone (GAN)—a synthetic analog of endogenous allopregnanolone that lacks activity on nuclear steroid receptors—on the mesolimbic dopamine (DA) system involved in emotions and motivation. A single dose of GAN in young mice induced a dose-dependent, long-lasting neuroplasticity of glutamate synapses of DA neurons ex vivo in the ventral tegmental area (VTA). Increased α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid (AMPA)/N-methyl-D-aspartate ratio and rectification of AMPA receptor responses even at 6 days after GAN administration suggested persistent synaptic targeting of GluA2-lacking AMPA receptors. This glutamate neuroplasticity was not observed in GABAA receptor δ-subunit-knockout (δ-KO) mice. GAN (500 nM) applied locally to VTA selectively increased tonic inhibition of GABA interneurons and triggered potentiation of DA neurons within 4 h in vitro. Place-conditioning experiments in adult wild-type C57BL/6J and δ-KO mice revealed aversive properties of repeated GAN administration that were dependent on the δ-subunits. Prolonged neuroadaptation to neurosteroids in the VTA might contribute to both the physiology and pathophysiology underlying processes and changes in motivation, mood, cognition, and drug addiction. PMID:24077066

  10. Benzodiazepine-site pharmacology on GABAA receptors in histaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    May, A C; Fleischer, W; Kletke, O; Haas, H L; Sergeeva, O A

    2013-01-01

    Background and Purpose The histaminergic tuberomamillary nucleus (TMN) of the posterior hypothalamus controls the cognitive aspects of vigilance which is reduced by common sedatives and anxiolytics. The receptors targeted by these drugs in histaminergic neurons are unknown. TMN neurons express nine different subunits of the GABAA receptor (GABAAR) with three α- (α1, α2 and α5) and two γ- (γ1, γ 2) subunits, which confer different pharmacologies of the benzodiazepine-binding site. Experimental Approach We investigated the actions of zolpidem, midazolam, diazepam, chlordiazepoxide, flumazenil (Ro15-1788) and methyl-6,7-dimethoxy-4-ethyl-β-carboline-3-carboxylate (DMCM) in TMN neurons using mouse genetics, electrophysiological and molecular biological methods. Key Results We find the sensitivity of GABAAR to zolpidem, midazolam and DMCM significantly reduced in TMN neurons from γ2F77I mice, but modulatory activities of diazepam, chlordiazepoxide and flumazenil not affected. Potencies and efficacies of these compounds are in line with the dominance of α2- and α1-subunit containing receptors associated with γ2- or γ1-subunits. Functional expression of the γ1-subunit is supported by siRNA-based knock-down experiments in γ2F77I mice. Conclusions and Implications GABAAR of TMN neurons respond to a variety of common sedatives with a high affinity binding site (γ2F77I) involved. The γ1-subunit likely contributes to the action of common sedatives in TMN neurons. This study is relevant for understanding the role of neuronal histamine and benzodiazepines in disorders of sleep and metabolism. Linked Articles This article is part of a themed issue on Histamine Pharmacology Update. To view the other articles in this issue visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2013.170.issue-1 PMID:23799902

  11. Immature large ribosomal subunits containing the 7S pre-rRNA can engage in translation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Galán, Olga; García-Gómez, Juan J; Kressler, Dieter; de la Cruz, Jesús

    2015-01-01

    Evolution has provided eukaryotes with mechanisms that impede immature and/or aberrant ribosomes to engage in translation. These mechanisms basically either prevent the nucleo-cytoplasmic export of these particles or, once in the cytoplasm, the release of associated assembly factors, which interfere with the binding of translation initiation factors and/or the ribosomal subunit joining. We have previously shown that aberrant yeast 40S ribosomal subunits containing the 20S pre-rRNA can engage in translation. In this study, we describe that cells harbouring the dob1-1 allele, encoding a mutated version of the exosome-assisting RNA helicase Mtr4, accumulate otherwise nuclear pre-60S ribosomal particles containing the 7S pre-rRNA in the cytoplasm. Polysome fractionation analyses revealed that these particles are competent for translation and do not induce elongation stalls. This phenomenon is rather specific since most mutations in other exosome components or co-factors, impairing the 3' end processing of the mature 5.8S rRNA, accumulate 7S pre-rRNAs in the nucleus. In addition, we confirm that pre-60S ribosomal particles containing either 5.8S + 30 or 5.8S + 5 pre-rRNAs also engage in translation elongation. We propose that 7S pre-rRNA processing is not strictly required for pre-60S r-particle export and that, upon arrival in the cytoplasm, there is no specific mechanism to prevent translation by premature pre-60S r-particles containing 3' extended forms of mature 5.8S rRNA. PMID:26151772

  12. Etomidate blocks LTP and impairs learning but does not enhance tonic inhibition in mice carrying the N265M point mutation in the beta3 subunit of the GABA(A) receptor.

    PubMed

    Zarnowska, E D; Rodgers, F C; Oh, I; Rau, V; Lor, C; Laha, K T; Jurd, R; Rudolph, U; Eger, E I; Pearce, R A

    2015-06-01

    Enhancement of tonic inhibition mediated by extrasynaptic α5-subunit containing GABAA receptors (GABAARs) has been proposed as the mechanism by which a variety of anesthetics, including the general anesthetic etomidate, impair learning and memory. Since α5 subunits preferentially partner with β3 subunits, we tested the hypothesis that etomidate acts through β3-subunit containing GABAARs to enhance tonic inhibition, block LTP, and impair memory. We measured the effects of etomidate in wild type mice and in mice carrying a point mutation in the GABAAR β3-subunit (β3-N265M) that renders these receptors insensitive to etomidate. Etomidate enhanced tonic inhibition in CA1 pyramidal cells of the hippocampus in wild type but not in mutant mice, demonstrating that tonic inhibition is mediated by β3-subunit containing GABAARs. However, despite its inability to enhance tonic inhibition, etomidate did block LTP in brain slices from mutant mice as well as in those from wild type mice. Etomidate also impaired fear conditioning to context, with no differences between genotypes. In studies of recombinant receptors expressed in HEK293 cells, α5β1γ2L GABAARs were insensitive to amnestic concentrations of etomidate (1 μM and below), whereas α5β2γ2L and α5β3γ2L GABAARs were enhanced. We conclude that etomidate enhances tonic inhibition in pyramidal cells through its action on α5β3-containing GABAA receptors, but blocks LTP and impairs learning by other means - most likely by modulating α5β2-containing GABAA receptors. The critical anesthetic targets underlying amnesia might include other forms of inhibition imposed on pyramidal neurons (e.g. slow phasic inhibition), or inhibitory processes on non-pyramidal cells (e.g. interneurons). PMID:25680234

  13. GABAA Receptor Subtypes: the ‘One Glass of Wine’ Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Olsen, Richard W.; Hanchar, Harry J.; Meera, Pratap; Wallner, Martin

    2010-01-01

    This review discusses evidence for and apparent controversy about, GABAA receptor subtypes that mediate alcohol effects experienced during social drinking. GABAA receptors that contain the β3 and δ subunits were shown to be enhanced by alcohol concentrations that mirror the concentration-dependence of alcohol responses in humans. A mutation (α6R100Q) previously found in alcohol non-tolerant (ANT) rats in the cerebellar GABAA receptor α6 subunit is sufficient for increased alcohol-induced ataxia in rats homozygous for this mutation (α6-100QQ) and further increases alcohol-sensitivity of tonic GABA currents (mediated by α6βδ receptors) in cerebellar granule cells of α6-100QQ rats and in recombinant α6R100Qβ3δ receptors. This provided the first direct evidence that these types of receptors mediate behavioral effects of ethanol. Furthermore the behavioral alcohol antagonist Ro15-4513 specifically reverses ethanol enhancement on α4/6β3δ receptors. Unexpectedly, native and recombinant α4/6β3δ receptors bind the behavioral alcohol antagonist Ro15-4513 with high affinity and this binding is competitive with EtOH, suggesting a specific and mutually exclusive (competitive) ethanol/Ro15-4513 site which explains the puzzling activity of Ro15-4513 as a behavioral alcohol antagonist. Our conclusion from these findings is that alcohol/Ro15-4513-sensitive GABAA receptor subtypes are important alcohol targets and that alcohol at relevant concentrations is more specific than previously thought. In this review we discuss technical difficulties in expressing recombinant δ subunit-containing receptors in oocytes and mammalian cells, that may have contributed to negative results and confusion. Not only because we have reproduced detailed positive results numerous times, and we and many others have built extensively on basic findings, but also because we explain and combine many previously puzzling results into a coherent and highly plausible paradigm on how alcohol

  14. A Reinforcing Circuit Action of Extrasynaptic GABAA Receptor Modulators on Cerebellar Granule Cell Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Santhakumar, Vijayalakshmi; Otis, Thomas S.

    2013-01-01

    GABAA receptors (GABARs) are the targets of a wide variety of modulatory drugs which enhance chloride flux through GABAR ion channels. Certain GABAR modulators appear to acutely enhance the function of δ subunit-containing GABAR subtypes responsible for tonic forms of inhibition. Here we identify a reinforcing circuit mechanism by which these drugs, in addition to directly enhancing GABAR function, also increase GABA release. Electrophysiological recordings in cerebellar slices from rats homozygous for the ethanol-hypersensitive (α6100Q) allele show that modulators and agonists selective for δ-containing GABARs such as THDOC, ethanol and THIP (gaboxadol) increased the frequency of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSCs) in granule cells. Ethanol fails to augment granule cell sIPSC frequency in the presence of glutamate receptor antagonists, indicating that circuit mechanisms involving granule cell output contribute to ethanol-enhancement of synaptic inhibition. Additionally, GABAR antagonists decrease ethanol-induced enhancement of Golgi cell firing. Consistent with a role for glutamatergic inputs, THIP-induced increases in Golgi cell firing are abolished by glutamate receptor antagonists. Moreover, THIP enhances the frequency of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents in Golgi cells. Analyses of knockout mice indicate that δ subunit-containing GABARs are required for enhancing GABA release in the presence of ethanol and THIP. The limited expression of the GABAR δ subunit protein within the cerebellar cortex suggests that an indirect, circuit mechanism is responsible for stimulating Golgi cell GABA release by drugs selective for extrasynaptic isoforms of GABARs. Such circuit effects reinforce direct actions of these positive modulators on tonic GABAergic inhibition and are likely to contribute to the potent effect of these compounds as nervous system depressants. PMID:23977374

  15. A reinforcing circuit action of extrasynaptic GABAA receptor modulators on cerebellar granule cell inhibition.

    PubMed

    Santhakumar, Vijayalakshmi; Meera, Pratap; Karakossian, Movses H; Otis, Thomas S

    2013-01-01

    GABAA receptors (GABARs) are the targets of a wide variety of modulatory drugs which enhance chloride flux through GABAR ion channels. Certain GABAR modulators appear to acutely enhance the function of δ subunit-containing GABAR subtypes responsible for tonic forms of inhibition. Here we identify a reinforcing circuit mechanism by which these drugs, in addition to directly enhancing GABAR function, also increase GABA release. Electrophysiological recordings in cerebellar slices from rats homozygous for the ethanol-hypersensitive (α6100Q) allele show that modulators and agonists selective for δ-containing GABARs such as THDOC, ethanol and THIP (gaboxadol) increased the frequency of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSCs) in granule cells. Ethanol fails to augment granule cell sIPSC frequency in the presence of glutamate receptor antagonists, indicating that circuit mechanisms involving granule cell output contribute to ethanol-enhancement of synaptic inhibition. Additionally, GABAR antagonists decrease ethanol-induced enhancement of Golgi cell firing. Consistent with a role for glutamatergic inputs, THIP-induced increases in Golgi cell firing are abolished by glutamate receptor antagonists. Moreover, THIP enhances the frequency of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents in Golgi cells. Analyses of knockout mice indicate that δ subunit-containing GABARs are required for enhancing GABA release in the presence of ethanol and THIP. The limited expression of the GABAR δ subunit protein within the cerebellar cortex suggests that an indirect, circuit mechanism is responsible for stimulating Golgi cell GABA release by drugs selective for extrasynaptic isoforms of GABARs. Such circuit effects reinforce direct actions of these positive modulators on tonic GABAergic inhibition and are likely to contribute to the potent effect of these compounds as nervous system depressants. PMID:23977374

  16. Photo-antagonism of the GABAA receptor.

    PubMed

    Mortensen, Martin; Iqbal, Favaad; Pandurangan, Arun P; Hannan, Saad; Huckvale, Rosemary; Topf, Maya; Baker, James R; Smart, Trevor G

    2014-01-01

    Neurotransmitter receptor trafficking is fundamentally important for synaptic transmission and neural network activity. GABAA receptors and inhibitory synapses are vital components of brain function, yet much of our knowledge regarding receptor mobility and function at inhibitory synapses is derived indirectly from using recombinant receptors, antibody-tagged native receptors and pharmacological treatments. Here we describe the use of a set of research tools that can irreversibly bind to and affect the function of recombinant and neuronal GABAA receptors following ultraviolet photoactivation. These compounds are based on the competitive antagonist gabazine and incorporate a variety of photoactive groups. By using site-directed mutagenesis and ligand-docking studies, they reveal new areas of the GABA binding site at the interface between receptor β and α subunits. These compounds enable the selected inactivation of native GABAA receptor populations providing new insight into the function of inhibitory synapses and extrasynaptic receptors in controlling neuronal excitation. PMID:25072879

  17. Differential Roles of GABAA Receptor Subtypes in Benzodiazepine-Induced Enhancement of Brain-Stimulation Reward

    PubMed Central

    Reynolds, Lauren M; Engin, Elif; Tantillo, Gabriella; Lau, Hew Mun; Muschamp, John W; Carlezon, William A; Rudolph, Uwe

    2012-01-01

    Benzodiazepines such as diazepam are widely prescribed as anxiolytics and sleep aids. Continued use of benzodiazepines, however, can lead to addiction in vulnerable individuals. Here, we investigate the neural mechanisms of the behavioral effects of benzodiazepines using the intracranial self-stimulation (ICSS) test, a procedure with which the reward-enhancing effects of these drugs can be measured. Benzodiazepines bind nonselectively to several different GABAA receptor subtypes. To elucidate the α subunit(s) responsible for the reward-enhancing effects of benzodiazepines, we examined mice carrying a histidine-to-arginine point mutation in the α1, α2, or α3 subunit, which renders the targeted subunit nonresponsive to diazepam, other benzodiazepines and zolpidem. In wild-type and α1-point-mutated mice, diazepam caused a dose-dependent reduction in ICSS thresholds (reflecting a reward-enhancing effect) that is comparable to the reduction observed following cocaine administration. This effect was abolished in α2- and α3-point-mutant mice, suggesting that these subunits are necessary for the reward-enhancing action of diazepam. α2 Subunits appear to be particularly important, since diazepam increased ICSS thresholds (reflecting an aversive-like effect) in α2-point-mutant animals. Zolpidem, an α1-preferring benzodiazepine-site agonist, had no reward-enhancing effects in any genotype. Our findings implicate α2 and α3 subunit containing GABAA receptors as key mediators of the reward-related effects of benzodiazepines. This finding has important implications for the development of new medications that retain the therapeutic effects of benzodiazepines but lack abuse liability. PMID:22763624

  18. GABAA receptor subtypes: the "one glass of wine" receptors.

    PubMed

    Olsen, Richard W; Hanchar, Harry J; Meera, Pratap; Wallner, Martin

    2007-05-01

    This review discusses evidence for and apparent controversy about, gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor (GABAAR) subtypes that mediate alcohol effects experienced during social drinking. GABAARs that contain the beta3 and delta subunits were shown to be enhanced by alcohol concentrations that mirror the concentration dependence of alcohol responses in humans. A mutation (alpha6R100Q) previously found in alcohol nontolerant rats in the cerebellar GABAAR alpha6 subunit is sufficient for increased alcohol-induced ataxia in rats homozygous for this mutation (alpha6-100QQ) and further increases alcohol sensitivity of tonic GABA currents (mediated by alpha6betadelta receptors) in cerebellar granule cells of alpha6-100QQ rats and in recombinant alpha6R100Qbeta3delta receptors. This provided the first direct evidence that these types of receptors mediate behavioral effects of ethanol. Furthermore, the behavioral alcohol antagonist Ro15-4513 specifically reverses ethanol enhancement on alpha4/6beta3delta receptors. Unexpectedly, native and recombinant alpha4/6beta3delta receptors bind the behavioral alcohol antagonist Ro15-4513 with high affinity and this binding is competitive with EtOH, suggesting a specific and mutually exclusive (competitive) ethanol/Ro15-4513 site, which explains the puzzling activity of Ro15-4513 as a behavioral alcohol antagonist. Our conclusion from these findings is that alcohol/Ro15-4513-sensitive GABAAR subtypes are important alcohol targets and that alcohol at relevant concentrations is more specific than previously thought. In this review, we discuss technical difficulties in expressing recombinant delta subunit-containing receptors in oocytes and mammalian cells that may have contributed to negative results and confusion. Not only because we have reproduced detailed positive results numerous times, and we and many others have built extensively on basic findings, but also because we explain and combine many previously puzzling

  19. Action of tremorgenic mycotoxins on GABAA receptor.

    PubMed

    Gant, D B; Cole, R J; Valdes, J J; Eldefrawi, M E; Eldefrawi, A T

    1987-11-01

    The effects of four tremorgenic and one nontremorgenic mycotoxins were studied on gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAA) receptor binding and function in rat brain and on binding of a voltage-operated Cl- channel in Torpedo electric organ. None of the mycotoxins had significant effect on [3H]muscimol or [3H]flunitrazepam binding to the GABAA receptor. However, only the four tremorgenic mycotoxins inhibited GABA-induced 36Cl- influx and [35S] t-butylbicyclophosphorothionate [( 35S]TBPS) binding in rat brain membranes, while the nontremorgenic verruculotoxin had no effect. Inhibition of [35S]TBPS binding by paspalinine was non-competitive. This suggests that tremorgenic mycotoxins inhibit GABAA receptor function by binding close to the receptor's Cl- channel. On the voltage-operated Cl- channel, only high concentrations of verruculogen and verruculotoxin caused significant inhibition of the channel's binding of [35S]TBPS. The data suggest that the tremorgenic action of these mycotoxins may be due in part to their inhibition of GABAA receptor function. PMID:2444852

  20. Phasic, Nonsynaptic GABA-A Receptor-Mediated Inhibition Entrains Thalamocortical Oscillations

    PubMed Central

    Rovó, Zita; Mátyás, Ferenc; Barthó, Péter; Slézia, Andrea; Lecci, Sandro; Pellegrini, Chiara; Astori, Simone; Dávid, Csaba; Hangya, Balázs

    2014-01-01

    GABA-A receptors (GABA-ARs) are typically expressed at synaptic or nonsynaptic sites mediating phasic and tonic inhibition, respectively. These two forms of inhibition conjointly control various network oscillations. To disentangle their roles in thalamocortical rhythms, we focally deleted synaptic, γ2 subunit-containing GABA-ARs in the thalamus using viral intervention in mice. After successful removal of γ2 subunit clusters, spontaneous and evoked GABAergic synaptic currents disappeared in thalamocortical cells when the presynaptic, reticular thalamic (nRT) neurons fired in tonic mode. However, when nRT cells fired in burst mode, slow phasic GABA-AR-mediated events persisted, indicating a dynamic, burst-specific recruitment of nonsynaptic GABA-ARs. In vivo, removal of synaptic GABA-ARs reduced the firing of individual thalamocortical cells but did not abolish slow oscillations or sleep spindles. We conclude that nonsynaptic GABA-ARs are recruited in a phasic manner specifically during burst firing of nRT cells and provide sufficient GABA-AR activation to control major thalamocortical oscillations. PMID:24849349

  1. Slow GABAA mediated synaptic transmission in rat visual cortex

    PubMed Central

    Sceniak, Michael P; MacIver, M Bruce

    2008-01-01

    Background Previous reports of inhibition in the neocortex suggest that inhibition is mediated predominantly through GABAA receptors exhibiting fast kinetics. Within the hippocampus, it has been shown that GABAA responses can take the form of either fast or slow response kinetics. Our findings indicate, for the first time, that the neocortex displays synaptic responses with slow GABAA receptor mediated inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs). These IPSCs are kinetically and pharmacologically similar to responses found in the hippocampus, although the anatomical specificity of evoked responses is unique from hippocampus. Spontaneous slow GABAA IPSCs were recorded from both pyramidal and inhibitory neurons in rat visual cortex. Results GABAA slow IPSCs were significantly different from fast responses with respect to rise times and decay time constants, but not amplitudes. Spontaneously occurring GABAA slow IPSCs were nearly 100 times less frequent than fast sIPSCs and both were completely abolished by the chloride channel blocker, picrotoxin. The GABAA subunit-specific antagonist, furosemide, depressed spontaneous and evoked GABAA fast IPSCs, but not slow GABAA-mediated IPSCs. Anatomical specificity was evident using minimal stimulation: IPSCs with slow kinetics were evoked predominantly through stimulation of layer 1/2 apical dendritic zones of layer 4 pyramidal neurons and across their basal dendrites, while GABAA fast IPSCs were evoked through stimulation throughout the dendritic arborization. Many evoked IPSCs were also composed of a combination of fast and slow IPSC components. Conclusion GABAA slow IPSCs displayed durations that were approximately 4 fold longer than typical GABAA fast IPSCs, but shorter than GABAB-mediated inhibition. The anatomical and pharmacological specificity of evoked slow IPSCs suggests a unique origin of synaptic input. Incorporating GABAA slow IPSCs into computational models of cortical function will help improve our understanding of

  2. The parvalbumin-positive interneurons in the mouse dentate gyrus express GABAA receptor subunits α1, β2, and δ along their extrasynaptic cell membrane.

    PubMed

    Milenkovic, I; Vasiljevic, M; Maurer, D; Höger, H; Klausberger, T; Sieghart, W

    2013-12-19

    Neuronal circuitries in the hippocampus are involved in navigation and memory and are controlled by major networks of GABAergic interneurons. Parvalbumin (PV)-expressing interneurons in the dentate gyrus (DG) are identified as fast-spiking cells, playing a crucial role in network oscillation and synchrony. The inhibitory modulation of these interneurons is thought to be mediated mainly through GABAA receptors, the major inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors in the brain. Here we show that all PV-positive interneurons in the granular/subgranular layer (GL/SGL) of the mouse DG express high levels of the GABAA receptor δ subunit. PV-containing interneurons in the hilus and the molecular layer, however, express the δ subunit to a lower extent. Only 8% of the somatostatin-containing interneurons express the δ subunit, whereas calbindin- or calretinin-containing interneurons in the DG seem not to express the GABAA receptor δ subunit at all. Hence, these cells receive a GABAergic control different from that of PV-containing interneurons in the GL/SGL. Experiments investigating a possible co-expression of GABAA receptor α1, α2, α3, α4, α5, β1, β2, β3, or γ2 subunits with PV and δ subunits indicated that α1 and β2 subunits are co-expressed with δ subunits along the extrasynaptic membranes of PV-interneurons. These results suggest a robust tonic GABAergic control of PV-containing interneurons in the GL/SGL of the DG via δ subunit-containing receptors. Our data are important for better understanding of the neuronal circuitries in the DG and the role of specific cell types under pathological conditions. PMID:24055402

  3. PET radioligands targeting the brain GABAA /benzodiazepine receptor complex.

    PubMed

    Andersson, Jan D; Halldin, Christer

    2013-01-01

    The development of positron emission tomography radioligands for the GABAA /benzodiazepine receptor complex (GABAA receptor) labeled with (11) C and (18) F is examined. The review covers labeling strategies as well as brief biological evaluations of radioligands. In addition, we assess the special considerations that must be taken during a development program for radioligands targeting the GABAA receptor and explore some of the challenges that lie ahead. PMID:24285326

  4. Ethanol potently and competitively inhibits binding of the alcohol antagonist Ro15-4513 to α4/6β3δ GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Hanchar, H. Jacob; Chutsrinopkun, Panida; Meera, Pratap; Supavilai, Porntip; Sieghart, Werner; Wallner, Martin; Olsen, Richard W.

    2006-01-01

    Although GABAA receptors have long been implicated in mediating ethanol (EtOH) actions, receptors containing the “nonsynaptic” δ subunit only recently have been shown to be uniquely sensitive to EtOH. Here, we show that δ subunit-containing receptors bind the imidazo-benzodiazepines (BZs) flumazenil and Ro15-4513 with high affinity (Kd < 10 nM), contrary to the widely held belief that these receptors are insensitive to BZs. In immunopurified native cerebellar and recombinant δ subunit-containing receptors, binding of the alcohol antagonist [3H]Ro15-4513 is inhibited by low concentrations of EtOH (Ki ≈ 8 mM). Also, Ro15-4513 binding is inhibited by BZ-site ligands that have been shown to reverse the behavioral alcohol antagonism of Ro15-4513 (i.e., flumazenil, β-carbolinecarboxylate ethyl ester (β-CCE), and N-methyl-β-carboline-3-carboxamide (FG7142), but not including any classical BZ agonists like diazepam). Experiments that were designed to distinguish between a competitive and allosteric mechanism suggest that EtOH and Ro15-4513 occupy a mutually exclusive binding site. The fact that only Ro15-4513, but not flumazenil, can inhibit the EtOH effect, and that Ro15-4513 differs from flumazenil by only a single group in the molecule (an azido group at the C7 position of the BZ ring) suggest that this azido group in Ro15-4513 might be the area that overlaps with the alcohol-binding site. Our findings, combined with previous observations that Ro15-4513 is a behavioral alcohol antagonist, suggest that many of the behavioral effects of EtOH at relevant physiological concentrations are mediated by EtOH/Ro15-4513-sensitive GABAA receptors. PMID:16581914

  5. Ethanol potently and competitively inhibits binding of the alcohol antagonist Ro15-4513 to alpha4/6beta3delta GABAA receptors.

    PubMed

    Hanchar, H Jacob; Chutsrinopkun, Panida; Meera, Pratap; Supavilai, Porntip; Sieghart, Werner; Wallner, Martin; Olsen, Richard W

    2006-05-30

    Although GABA(A) receptors have long been implicated in mediating ethanol (EtOH) actions, receptors containing the "nonsynaptic" delta subunit only recently have been shown to be uniquely sensitive to EtOH. Here, we show that delta subunit-containing receptors bind the imidazo-benzodiazepines (BZs) flumazenil and Ro15-4513 with high affinity (K(d) < 10 nM), contrary to the widely held belief that these receptors are insensitive to BZs. In immunopurified native cerebellar and recombinant delta subunit-containing receptors, binding of the alcohol antagonist [(3)H]Ro15-4513 is inhibited by low concentrations of EtOH (K(i) approximately 8 mM). Also, Ro15-4513 binding is inhibited by BZ-site ligands that have been shown to reverse the behavioral alcohol antagonism of Ro15-4513 (i.e., flumazenil, beta-carbolinecarboxylate ethyl ester (beta-CCE), and N-methyl-beta-carboline-3-carboxamide (FG7142), but not including any classical BZ agonists like diazepam). Experiments that were designed to distinguish between a competitive and allosteric mechanism suggest that EtOH and Ro15-4513 occupy a mutually exclusive binding site. The fact that only Ro15-4513, but not flumazenil, can inhibit the EtOH effect, and that Ro15-4513 differs from flumazenil by only a single group in the molecule (an azido group at the C7 position of the BZ ring) suggest that this azido group in Ro15-4513 might be the area that overlaps with the alcohol-binding site. Our findings, combined with previous observations that Ro15-4513 is a behavioral alcohol antagonist, suggest that many of the behavioral effects of EtOH at relevant physiological concentrations are mediated by EtOH/Ro15-4513-sensitive GABA(A) receptors. PMID:16581914

  6. α5GABAA receptor deficiency causes autism-like behaviors.

    PubMed

    Zurek, Agnieszka A; Kemp, Stephen W P; Aga, Zeenia; Walker, Susan; Milenkovic, Marija; Ramsey, Amy J; Sibille, Etienne; Scherer, Stephen W; Orser, Beverley A

    2016-05-01

    The prevalence of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs), which affect over 1% of the population, has increased twofold in recent years. Reduced expression of GABAA receptors has been observed in postmortem brain tissue and neuroimaging of individuals with ASDs. We found that deletion of the gene for the α5 subunit of the GABAA receptor caused robust autism-like behaviors in mice, including reduced social contacts and vocalizations. Screening of human exome sequencing data from 396 ASD subjects revealed potential missense mutations in GABRA5 and in RDX, the gene for the α5GABAA receptor-anchoring protein radixin, further supporting a α5GABAA receptor deficiency in ASDs. PMID:27231709

  7. Alcohol- and alcohol antagonist-sensitive human GABAA receptors: tracking δ subunit incorporation into functional receptors.

    PubMed

    Meera, Pratap; Olsen, Richard W; Otis, Thomas S; Wallner, Martin

    2010-11-01

    GABA(A) receptors (GABA(A)Rs) have long been a focus as targets for alcohol actions. Recent work suggests that tonic GABAergic inhibition mediated by extrasynaptic δ subunit-containing GABA(A)Rs is uniquely sensitive to ethanol and enhanced at concentrations relevant for human alcohol consumption. Ethanol enhancement of recombinant α4β3δ receptors is blocked by the behavioral alcohol antagonist 8-azido-5,6-dihydro-5-methyl-6-oxo-4H-imidazo[1,5-a][1,4]benzodiazepine-3-carboxylic acid ethyl ester (Ro15-4513), suggesting that EtOH/Ro15-4513-sensitive receptors mediate important behavioral alcohol actions. Here we confirm alcohol/alcohol antagonist sensitivity of α4β3δ receptors using human clones expressed in a human cell line and test the hypothesis that discrepant findings concerning the high alcohol sensitivity of these receptors are due to difficulties incorporating δ subunits into functional receptors. To track δ subunit incorporation, we used a functional tag, a single amino acid change (H68A) in a benzodiazepine binding residue in which a histidine in the δ subunit is replaced by an alanine residue found at the homologous position in γ subunits. We demonstrate that the δH68A substitution confers diazepam sensitivity to otherwise diazepam-insensitive α4β3δ receptors. The extent of enhancement of α4β3δH68A receptors by 1 μM diazepam, 30 mM EtOH, and 1 μM β-carboline-3-carboxy ethyl ester (but not 1 μM Zn(2+) block) is correlated in individual recordings, suggesting that δ subunit incorporation into recombinant GABA(A)Rs varies from cell to cell and that this variation accounts for the variable pharmacological profile. These data are consistent with the notion that δ subunit-incorporation is often incomplete in recombinant systems yet is necessary for high ethanol sensitivity, one of the features of native δ subunit-containing GABA(A)Rs. PMID:20699325

  8. Alcohol- and Alcohol Antagonist-Sensitive Human GABAA Receptors: Tracking δ Subunit Incorporation into Functional Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Meera, Pratap; Olsen, Richard W.; Otis, Thomas S.

    2010-01-01

    GABAA receptors (GABAARs) have long been a focus as targets for alcohol actions. Recent work suggests that tonic GABAergic inhibition mediated by extrasynaptic δ subunit-containing GABAARs is uniquely sensitive to ethanol and enhanced at concentrations relevant for human alcohol consumption. Ethanol enhancement of recombinant α4β3δ receptors is blocked by the behavioral alcohol antagonist 8-azido-5,6-dihydro-5-methyl-6-oxo-4H-imidazo[1,5-a][1,4]benzodiazepine-3-carboxylic acid ethyl ester (Ro15-4513), suggesting that EtOH/Ro15-4513-sensitive receptors mediate important behavioral alcohol actions. Here we confirm alcohol/alcohol antagonist sensitivity of α4β3δ receptors using human clones expressed in a human cell line and test the hypothesis that discrepant findings concerning the high alcohol sensitivity of these receptors are due to difficulties incorporating δ subunits into functional receptors. To track δ subunit incorporation, we used a functional tag, a single amino acid change (H68A) in a benzodiazepine binding residue in which a histidine in the δ subunit is replaced by an alanine residue found at the homologous position in γ subunits. We demonstrate that the δH68A substitution confers diazepam sensitivity to otherwise diazepam-insensitive α4β3δ receptors. The extent of enhancement of α4β3δH68A receptors by 1 μM diazepam, 30 mM EtOH, and 1 μM β-carboline-3-carboxy ethyl ester (but not 1 μM Zn2+ block) is correlated in individual recordings, suggesting that δ subunit incorporation into recombinant GABAARs varies from cell to cell and that this variation accounts for the variable pharmacological profile. These data are consistent with the notion that δ subunit-incorporation is often incomplete in recombinant systems yet is necessary for high ethanol sensitivity, one of the features of native δ subunit-containing GABAARs. PMID:20699325

  9. The Role of GABAA Receptors in the Development of Alcoholism

    PubMed Central

    Enoch, Mary-Anne

    2008-01-01

    Alcoholism is a common, heritable, chronic relapsing disorder. GABAA receptors undergo allosteric modulation by ethanol, anesthetics, benzodiazepines and neurosteroids and have been implicated in the acute as well as the chronic effects of ethanol including tolerance, dependence and withdrawal. Medications targeting GABAA receptors ameliorate the symptoms of acute withdrawal. Ethanol induces plasticity in GABAA receptors: tolerance is associated with generally decreased GABAA receptor activation and differentially altered subunit expression. The dopamine (DA) mesolimbic reward pathway originating in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), and interacting stress circuitry play an important role in the development of addiction. VTA GABAergic interneurons are the primary inhibitory regulators of DA neurons and a subset of VTA GABAA receptors may be implicated in the switch from heavy drinking to dependence. GABAA receptors modulate anxiety and response to stress; important elements of sustained drinking and relapse. The GABAA receptor subunit genes clustered on chromosome 4 are highly expressed in the reward pathway. Several recent studies have provided strong evidence that one of these genes, GABRA2, is implicated in alcoholism in humans. The influence of the interaction between ethanol and GABAA receptors in the reward pathway on the development of alcoholism together with genetic and epigenetic vulnerabilities will be explored in this review. PMID:18440057

  10. GABA(A) receptor subunit alteration-dependent diazepam insensitivity in the cerebellum of phospholipase C-related inactive protein knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Mizokami, Akiko; Tanaka, Hiroto; Ishibashi, Hitoshi; Umebayashi, Hisanori; Fukami, Kiyoko; Takenawa, Tadaomi; Nakayama, Keiichi I; Yokoyama, Takeshi; Nabekura, Junichi; Kanematsu, Takashi; Hirata, Masato

    2010-07-01

    The GABA(A) receptor, a pentamer composed predominantly of alpha, beta, and gamma subunits, mediates fast inhibitory synaptic transmission. We have previously reported that phospholipase C-related inactive protein (PRIP) is a modulator of GABA(A) receptor trafficking and that knockout (KO) mice exhibit a diazepam-insensitive phenotype in the hippocampus. The alpha subunit affects diazepam sensitivity; alpha1, 2, 3, and 5 subunits assemble with any form of beta and the gamma2 subunits to produce diazepam-sensitive receptors, whereas alpha4 or alpha6/beta/gamma2 receptors are diazepam-insensitive. Here, we investigated how PRIP is implicated in the diazepam-insensitive phenotype using cerebellar granule cells in animals expressing predominantly the alpha6 subunit. The expression of alpha1/beta/gamma2 diazepam-sensitive receptors was decreased in the PRIP-1 and 2 double KO cerebellum without any change in the total number of benzodiazepine-binding sites as assessed by radioligand-binding assay. Since levels of the alpha6 subunit were increased, the alpha1/beta/gamma2 receptors might be replaced with alpha6 subunit-containing receptors. Then, we further performed autoradiographic and electrophysiologic analyses. These results suggest that the expression of alpha6/delta receptors was decreased in cerebellar granule neurons, while that of alpha6/gamma2 receptors was increased. PRIP-1 and 2 double KO mice exhibit a diazepam-insensitive phenotype because of a decrease in diazepam-sensitive (alpha1/gamma2) and increase in diazepam-insensitive (alpha6/gamma2) GABA(A) receptors in the cerebellar granule cells. PMID:20412381

  11. GABAA Receptors in Normal Development and Seizures: Friends or Foes?

    PubMed Central

    Galanopoulou, Aristea S

    2008-01-01

    GABAA receptors have an age-adapted function in the brain. During early development, they mediate excitatory effects resulting in activation of calcium sensitive signaling processes that are important for the differentiation of the brain. In more mature stages of development and in adults, GABAA receptors transmit inhibitory signals. The maturation of GABAA signaling follows sex-specific patterns, which appear to also be important for the sexual differentiation of the brain. The inhibitory effects of GABAA receptor activation have been widely exploited in the treatment of conditions where neuronal silencing is necessary. For instance, drugs that target GABAA receptors are the mainstay of treatment of seizures. Recent evidence suggests however that the physiology and function of GABAA receptors changes in the brain of a subject that has epilepsy or status epilepticus. This review will summarize the physiology of and the developmental factors regulating the signaling and function of GABAA receptors; how these may change in the brain that has experienced prior seizures; what are the implications for the age and sex specific treatment of seizures and status epilepticus. Finally, the implications of these changes for the treatment of certain forms of medically refractory epilepsies and status epilepticus will be discussed. PMID:19305785

  12. Antiseizure Activity of Midazolam in Mice Lacking δ-Subunit Extrasynaptic GABA(A) Receptors.

    PubMed

    Reddy, Sandesh D; Younus, Iyan; Clossen, Bryan L; Reddy, Doodipala Samba

    2015-06-01

    Midazolam is a benzodiazepine anticonvulsant with rapid onset and short duration of action. Midazolam is the current drug of choice for acute seizures and status epilepticus, including those caused by organophosphate nerve agents. The antiseizure activity of midazolam is thought to result from its allosteric potentiation of synaptic GABA(A) receptors in the brain. However, there are indications that benzodiazepines promote neurosteroid synthesis via the 18-kDa cholesterol transporter protein (TSPO). Therefore, we investigated the role of neurosteroids and their extrasynaptic GABA(A) receptor targets in the antiseizure activity of midazolam. Here, we used δ-subunit knockout (DKO) mice bearing a targeted deletion of the extrasynaptic receptors to investigate the contribution of the extrasynaptic receptors to the antiseizure activity of midazolam using the 6-Hz and hippocampus kindling seizure models. In both models, midazolam produced rapid and dose-dependent protection against seizures (ED50, 0.4 mg/kg). Moreover, the antiseizure potency of midazolam was undiminished in DKO mice compared with control mice. Pretreatment with PK11195 [1-(2-chlorophenyl)-N-methyl-N-(1-methylpropyl)-3-isoquinolinecarboxamide], a TSPO blocker, or finasteride, a 5α-reductase neurosteroid inhibitor, did not affect the antiseizure effect of midazolam. The antiseizure activity of midazolam was significantly reversed by pretreatment with flumazenil, a benzodiazepine antagonist. Plasma and brain levels of the neurosteroid allopregnanolone were not significantly greater in midazolam-treated animals. These studies therefore provide strong evidence that neurosteroids and extrasynaptic GABA(A) receptors are not involved in the antiseizure activity of midazolam, which mainly occurs through synaptic GABA(A) receptors via direct binding to benzodiazepine sites. This study reaffirms midazolam's use for controlling acute seizures and status epilepticus. PMID:25784648

  13. The role of ovarian hormone-derived neurosteroids on the regulation of GABAA receptors in affective disorders

    PubMed Central

    MacKenzie, Georgina; Maguire, Jamie

    2014-01-01

    Rationale Neuroactive derivatives of steroid hormones, neurosteroids, can act on GABAA receptors (GABAARs) to potentiate the effects of GABA on these receptors. Neurosteroids become elevated to physiologically relevant levels under conditions characterized by increased steroid hormones. There is considerable evidence for plasticity of GABAARs associated with altered levels of neurosteroids which may counteract the fluctuations in the levels of these allosteric modulators. Objectives The objective of this review is to summarize the current literature on GABAAR plasticity under conditions characterized by alterations in neurosteroid levels, such as over the estrous cycle, during puberty, and throughout pregnancy and the postpartum period. Results The expression of specific GABAAR subunits are altered over the estrous cycle, at puberty, and throughout pregnancy and the postpartum period. Inability to regulate δ subunit-containing GABAARs throughout pregnancy and the postpartum period is associated with depression-like behavior restricted to the postpartum period. Conclusions GABAAR plasticity associated with alterations in neurosteroid levels represents a homeostatic compensatory mechanism to maintain an ideal level of inhibition to offset the potentiating effects of neurosteroids on GABAergic inhibition. Failure to properly regulate GABAARs under conditions of altered neurosteroid levels may increase vulnerability to mood disorders, such as premenstrual syndrome (PMS), premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), and postpartum depression. PMID:24402140

  14. Enhancement of GluN2B Subunit-Containing NMDA Receptor Underlies Serotonergic Regulation of Long-Term Potentiation after Critical Period in the Rat Visual Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Joo, Kayoung; Rhie, Duck-Joo

    2015-01-01

    Serotonin [5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT)] regulates synaptic plasticity in the visual cortex. Although the effects of 5-HT on plasticity showed huge diversity depending on the ages of animals and species, it has been unclear how 5-HT can show such diverse effects. In the rat visual cortex, 5-HT suppressed long-term potentiation (LTP) at 5 weeks but enhanced LTP at 8 weeks. We speculated that this difference may originate from differential regulation of neurotransmission by 5-HT between the age groups. Thus, we investigated the effects of 5-HT on apha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor (AMPAR)-, γ-aminobutyric acid receptor type A (GABAAR)-, and N-methyl-D-aspartic acid receptor (NMDAR)-mediated neurotransmissions and their involvement in the differential regulation of plasticity between 5 and 8 weeks. AMPAR-mediated currents were not affected by 5-HT at both 5 and 8 weeks. GABAAR-mediated currents were enhanced by 5-HT at both age groups. However, 5-HT enhanced NMDAR-mediated currents only at 8 weeks. The enhancement of NMDAR-mediated currents appeared to be mediated by the enhanced function of GluN2B subunit-containing NMDAR. The enhanced GABAAR- and NMDAR-mediated neurotransmissions were responsible for the suppression of LTP at 5 weeks and the facilitation of LTP at 8 weeks, respectively. These results indicate that the effects of 5-HT on neurotransmission change with development, and the changes may underlie the differential regulation of synaptic plasticity between different age groups. Thus, the developmental changes in 5-HT function should be carefully considered while investigating the 5-HT-mediated metaplastic control of the cortical network. PMID:26557019

  15. The immunoglobulin domain of the sodium channel β3 subunit contains a surface-localized disulfide bond that is required for homophilic binding

    PubMed Central

    Yereddi, Nikitha R.; Cusdin, Fiona S.; Namadurai, Sivakumar; Packman, Len C.; Monie, Tom P.; Slavny, Peter; Clare, Jeffrey J.; Powell, Andrew J.; Jackson, Antony P.

    2013-01-01

    The β subunits of voltage-gated sodium (Nav) channels possess an extracellular immunoglobulin (Ig) domain that is related to the L1 family of cell-adhesion molecules (CAMs). Here we show that in HEK293 cells, secretion of the free Ig domain of the β3 subunit is reduced significantly when it is coexpressed with the full-length β3 and β1 subunits but not with the β2 subunit. Using immunoprecipitation, we show that the β3 subunit can mediate trans homophilic-binding via its Ig domain and that the β3-Ig domain can associate heterophilically with the β1 subunit. Evolutionary tracing analysis and structural modeling identified a cluster of surface-localized amino acids fully conserved between the Ig domains of all known β3 and β1 sequences. A notable feature of this conserved surface cluster is the presence of two adjacent cysteine residues that previously we have suggested may form a disulfide bond. We now confirm the presence of the disulfide bond in β3 using mass spectrometry, and we show that its integrity is essential for the association of the full-length, membrane-anchored β3 subunit with itself. However, selective reduction of this surface disulfide bond did not inhibit homophilic binding of the purified β3-Ig domain in free solution. Hence, the disulfide bond itself is unlikely to be part of the homophilic binding site. Rather, we suggest that its integrity ensures the Ig domain of the membrane-tethered β3 subunit adopts the correct orientation for productive association to occur in vivo.—Yereddi, N. R., Cusdin, F. S., Namadurai, S., Packman, L. C., Monie, T. P., Slavny, P., Clare, J. C., Powell, A. J., Jackson, A. P. The immunoglobulin domain of the sodium channel β3 subunit contains a surface-localized disulfide bond that is required for homophilic binding. PMID:23118027

  16. Mouse hippocampal GABAB1 but not GABAB2 subunit-containing receptor complex levels are paralleling retrieval in the multiple-T-maze

    PubMed Central

    Falsafi, Soheil K.; Ghafari, Maryam; Miklósi, András G.; Engidawork, Ephrem; Gröger, Marion; Höger, Harald; Lubec, Gert

    2015-01-01

    GABAB receptors are heterodimeric G-protein coupled receptors known to be involved in learning and memory. Although a role for GABAB receptors in cognitive processes is evident, there is no information on hippocampal GABAB receptor complexes in a multiple T maze (MTM) task, a robust paradigm for evaluation of spatial learning. Trained or untrained (yoked control) C57BL/6J male mice (n = 10/group) were subjected to the MTM task and sacrificed 6 h following their performance. Hippocampi were taken, membrane proteins extracted and run on blue native PAGE followed by immunoblotting with specific antibodies against GABAB1, GABAB1a, and GABAB2. Immunoprecipitation with subsequent mass spectrometric identification of co-precipitates was carried out to show if GABAB1 and GABAB2 as well as other interacting proteins co-precipitate. An antibody shift assay (ASA) and a proximity ligation assay (PLA) were also used to see if the two GABAB subunits are present in the receptor complex. Single bands were observed on Western blots, each representing GABAB1, GABAB1a, or GABAB2 at an apparent molecular weight of approximately 100 kDa. Subsequently, densitometric analysis revealed that levels of GABAB1 and GABAB1a but not GABAB2- containing receptor complexes were significantly higher in trained than untrained groups. Immunoprecipitation followed by mass spectrometric studies confirmed the presence of GABAB1, GABAB2, calcium calmodulin kinases I and II, GluA1 and GluA2 as constituents of the complex. ASA and PLA also showed the presence of the two subunits of GABAB receptor within the complex. It is shown that increased levels of GABAB1 subunit-containing complexes are paralleling performance in a land maze. PMID:26539091

  17. Mutant GABA(A) receptor subunits in genetic (idiopathic) epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Hirose, Shinichi

    2014-01-01

    The γ-aminobutyric acid receptor type A (GABAA receptor) is a ligand-gated chloride channel that mediates major inhibitory functions in the central nervous system. GABAA receptors function mainly as pentamers containing α, β, and either γ or δ subunits. A number of antiepileptic drugs have agonistic effects on GABAA receptors. Hence, dysfunctions of GABAA receptors have been postulated to play important roles in the etiology of epilepsy. In fact, mutations or genetic variations of the genes encoding the α1, α6, β2, β3, γ2, or δ subunits (GABRA1, GABRA6, GABRB2, GABRB3, GABRG2, and GABRD, respectively) have been associated with human epilepsy, both with and without febrile seizures. Epilepsy resulting from mutations is commonly one of following, genetic (idiopathic) generalized epilepsy (e.g., juvenile myoclonic epilepsy), childhood absence epilepsy, genetic epilepsy with febrile seizures, or Dravet syndrome. Recently, mutations of GABRA1, GABRB2, and GABRB3 were associated with infantile spasms and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. These mutations compromise hyperpolarization through GABAA receptors, which is believed to cause seizures. Interestingly, most of the insufficiencies are not caused by receptor gating abnormalities, but by complex mechanisms, including endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-associated degradation, nonsense-mediated mRNA decay, intracellular trafficking defects, and ER stress. Thus, GABAA receptor subunit mutations are now thought to participate in the pathomechanisms of epilepsy, and an improved understanding of these mutations should facilitate our understanding of epilepsy and the development of new therapies. PMID:25194483

  18. Diverse voltage-sensitive dyes modulate GABAA receptor function

    PubMed Central

    Mennerick, Steven; Chisari, Mariangela; Shu, Hong-Jin; Taylor, Amanda; Vasek, Michael; Eisenman, Lawrence N.; Zorumski, Charles F.

    2010-01-01

    Voltage-sensitive dyes (VSDs) are important tools for assessing network and single-cell excitability, but an untested premise in most cases is that the dyes do not interfere with the parameters (membrane potential, excitability) that they are designed to measure. We found that popular members of several different families of voltage-sensitive dyes modulate GABAA receptor with maximum efficacy and potency similar to clinically used GABAA receptor modulators. Di-4-ANEPPS and DiBAC4(3) potentiated GABA function with micromolar and high nanomolar potency respectively and yielded strong maximum effects similar to barbiturates and neurosteroids. Newer blue oxonols had biphasic effects on GABAA receptor function at nanomolar and micromolar concentrations, with maximum potentiation comparable to that of saturating benzodiazepine effects. ANNINE 6 and ANNINE 6plus had no detectable effect on GABAA receptor function. Even dyes with no activity on GABAA receptors at baseline induced photodynamic enhancement of GABAA receptors. The basal effects of dyes were sufficient to prolong IPSCs and to dampen network activity in multielectrode array recordings. Therefore, the dual effects of voltage-sensitive dyes on GABAergic inhibition require caution in dye use for studies of excitability and network activity. PMID:20181584

  19. GABAA receptor modulation by terpenoids from Sideritis extracts

    PubMed Central

    Kessler, Artur; Sahin-Nadeem, Hilal; Lummis, Sarah C R; Weigel, Ingrid; Pischetsrieder, Monika; Buettner, Andrea; Villmann, Carmen

    2014-01-01

    Scope GABAA receptors are modulated by Sideritis extracts. The aim of this study was to identify single substances from Sideritis extracts responsible for GABAA receptor modulation. Methods and results Single volatile substances identified by GC have been tested in two expression systems, Xenopus oocytes and human embryonic kidney cells. Some of these substances, especially carvacrol, were highly potent on GABAA receptors composed of α1β2 and α1β2γ2 subunits. All effects measured were independent from the presence of the γ2 subunit. As Sideritis extracts contain a high amount of terpenes, 13 terpenes with similar structure elements were tested in the same way. Following a prescreening on α1β2 GABAA receptors, a high-throughput method was used for identification of the most effective terpenoid substances on GABA-affinity of α1β2γ2 receptors expressed in transfected cell lines. Isopulegol, pinocarveol, verbenol, and myrtenol were the most potent modifiers of GABAA receptor function. Conclusion Comparing the chemical structures, the action of terpenes on GABAA receptors is most probably due to the presence of hydroxyl groups and a bicyclic character of the substances tested. We propose an allosteric modulation independent from the γ2 subunit and similar to the action of alcohols and anesthetics. PMID:24273211

  20. Low Dose Nicotine and Antagonism of β2 Subunit Containing Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Have Similar Effects on Affective Behavior in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Shawn M.; Brunzell, Darlene H.

    2012-01-01

    Nicotine leads to both activation and desensitization (inactivation) of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). This study tested the hypothesis that nicotine and a selective antagonist of β2*nAChRs would have similar effects on affective behavior. Adult C57BL/6J male mice were tested in a conditioned emotional response (CER) assay which evaluates the ability of an aversive stimulus to inhibit goal-directed behavior. Mice lever-pressed for a saccharin reinforcer according to a variable schedule of reinforcement during sessions in which two presentations of a compound light/tone conditioned stimulus (CS) co-terminated with a 0.1 or 0.3 mA, 0.5 s footshock unconditioned stimulus (US). During testing in the absence of the US, mice received doses of i.p. nicotine (0, 0.0032, 0.01, 0.032, 0.1 mg/kg) or a selective β2 subunit containing nAChR (β2*nAChR) antagonist dihydro-beta-erythroidine (0, 0.1, 0.3, 1.0, 3.0 mg/kg DHβE). There was a dose-dependent effect of nicotine revealing that only low doses (0.01, 0.032 mg/kg) increased CER suppression ratios (SR) in these mice. DHβE also dose-dependently increased SR at the 3 mg/kg dose. In ethological measures of fear−/anxiety-like behavior, these doses of nicotine and DHβE significantly reduced digging behavior in a marble burying task and 0.3 mg/kg DHβE promoted open-arm activity in the elevated plus maze. Doses of nicotine and DHβE that altered affective behavior had no effect on locomotor activity. Similar to previous reports with anxiolytic drugs, low dose nicotine and DHβE reversed SR in a CER assay, decreased digging in a marble burying assay and increased open arm activity in the elevated plus maze. This study provides evidence that inactivation of β2*nAChRs reduces fear-like and anxiety-like behavior in rodents and suggests that smokers may be motivated to smoke in part to desensitize their β2*nAChRs. These data further identify β2*nAChR antagonism as a potential therapeutic strategy for relief of

  1. Differential vesicular sorting of AMPA and GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Yi; Chiu, Shu-Ling; Liu, Bian; Wu, Pei-Hsun; Delannoy, Michael; Lin, Da-Ting; Wirtz, Denis; Huganir, Richard L.

    2016-01-01

    In mature neurons AMPA receptors cluster at excitatory synapses primarily on dendritic spines, whereas GABAA receptors cluster at inhibitory synapses mainly on the soma and dendritic shafts. The molecular mechanisms underlying the precise sorting of these receptors remain unclear. By directly studying the constitutive exocytic vesicles of AMPA and GABAA receptors in vitro and in vivo, we demonstrate that they are initially sorted into different vesicles in the Golgi apparatus and inserted into distinct domains of the plasma membrane. These insertions are dependent on distinct Rab GTPases and SNARE complexes. The insertion of AMPA receptors requires SNAP25–syntaxin1A/B–VAMP2 complexes, whereas insertion of GABAA receptors relies on SNAP23–syntaxin1A/B–VAMP2 complexes. These SNARE complexes affect surface targeting of AMPA or GABAA receptors and synaptic transmission. Our studies reveal vesicular sorting mechanisms controlling the constitutive exocytosis of AMPA and GABAA receptors, which are critical for the regulation of excitatory and inhibitory responses in neurons. PMID:26839408

  2. Enhanced tonic GABAA inhibition in typical absence epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Cope, David W.; Di Giovanni, Giuseppe; Fyson, Sarah J.; Orbán, Gergely; Errington, Adam C.; Lőrincz, Magor L.; Gould, Timothy M.; Carter, David A.; Crunelli, Vincenzo

    2010-01-01

    The cellular mechanisms underlying typical absence seizures, which characterize various idiopathic generalized epilepsies, are not fully understood, but impaired GABAergic inhibition remains an attractive hypothesis. In contrast, we show here that extrasynaptic GABAA receptor–dependent ‘tonic’ inhibition is increased in thalamocortical neurons from diverse genetic and pharmacological models of absence seizures. Increased tonic inhibition is due to compromised GABA uptake by the GABA transporter GAT–1 in the genetic models tested, and GAT–1 is critical in governing seizure genesis. Extrasynaptic GABAA receptors are a requirement for seizures in two of the best characterized models of absence epilepsy, and the selective activation of thalamic extrasynaptic GABAA receptors is sufficient to elicit both electrographic and behavioural correlates of seizures in normal animals. These results identify an apparently common cellular pathology in typical absence seizures that may have epileptogenic significance, and highlight novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of absence epilepsy. PMID:19966779

  3. Dynamic Regulation of the GABAA Receptor Function by Redox Mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Calvo, Daniel J; González, Andrea N Beltrán

    2016-09-01

    Oxidizing and reducing agents, which are currently involved in cell metabolism and signaling pathways, can regulate fast inhibitory neurotransmission mediated by GABA receptors in the nervous system. A number of in vitro studies have shown that diverse redox compounds, including redox metabolites and reactive oxygen and nitrogen species, modulate phasic and tonic responses mediated by neuronal GABAA receptors through both presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms. We review experimental data showing that many redox agents, which are normally present in neurons and glia or are endogenously generated in these cells under physiologic states or during oxidative stress (e.g., hydrogen peroxide, superoxide and hydroxyl radicals, nitric oxide, ascorbic acid, and glutathione), induce potentiating or inhibiting actions on different native and recombinant GABAA receptor subtypes. Based on these results, it is thought that redox signaling might represent a homeostatic mechanism that regulates the function of synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA receptors in physiologic and pathologic conditions. PMID:27439531

  4. Mutations in GABAA receptor subunits associated with genetic epilepsies.

    PubMed

    Macdonald, Robert L; Kang, Jing-Qiong; Gallagher, Martin J

    2010-06-01

    Mutations in inhibitory GABAA receptor subunit genes (GABRA1, GABRB3, GABRG2 and GABRD) have been associated with genetic epilepsy syndromes including childhood absence epilepsy (CAE), juvenile myoclonic epilepsy (JME), pure febrile seizures (FS), generalized epilepsy with febrile seizures plus (GEFS+), and Dravet syndrome (DS)/severe myoclonic epilepsy in infancy (SMEI). These mutations are found in both translated and untranslated gene regions and have been shown to affect the GABAA receptors by altering receptor function and/or by impairing receptor biogenesis by multiple mechanisms including reducing subunit mRNA transcription or stability, impairing subunit folding, stability, or oligomerization and by inhibiting receptor trafficking. PMID:20308251

  5. To what extent is it possible to dissociate the anxiolytic and sedative/hypnotic properties of GABAA receptors modulators?

    PubMed

    Chagraoui, A; Skiba, M; Thuillez, C; Thibaut, F

    2016-11-01

    The relatively common view indicates a possible dissociation between the anxiolytic and sedative/hypnotic properties of benzodiazepines (BZs). Indeed, GABAA receptor (GABAAR) subtypes have specific cerebral distribution in distinct neural circuits. Thus, GABAAR subtype-selective drugs may be expected to perform distinct functions. However, standard behavioral test assays provide limited direction towards highlighting new action mechanisms of ligands targeting GABAARs. Automated behavioral tests, lack sensitivity as some behavioral characteristics or subtle behavioral changes of drug effects or that are not considered in the overall analysis (Ohl et al., 2001) and observation-based analyses are not always performed. In addition, despite the use of genetically engineered mice, any possible dissociation between the anxiolytic and sedative properties of BZs remains controversial. Moreover, the involvement the different subtypes of GABAAR subtypes in the anxious behavior and the mechanism of action of anxiolytic agents remains unclear since there has been little success in the pharmacological investigations so far. This raises the question of the involvement of the different subunits in anxiolytic-like and/or sedative effects; and the actual implication of these subunits, particularly, α-subunits in the modulation of sedation and/or anxiety-related disorders. This present review was prompted by several conflicting studies on the degree of involvement of these subunits in anxiolytic-like and/or sedative effects. To this end, we explored the GABAergic system, particularly, the role of different subunits containing synaptic GABAARs. We report herein the targeting gene encoding the different subunits and their contribution in anxiolytic-like and/or sedative actions, as well as, the mechanism underlying tolerance to BZs. PMID:27495357

  6. Puberty, steroids and GABAA receptor plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Sheryl S.; Aoki, Chiye; Shen, Hui

    2009-01-01

    Summary GABAA receptors (GABAR) mediate most inhibition in the CNS and are also a target for neuroactive steroids such as 3α,5[α]β-THP (3αOH-5[α]β-OH-pregnan-20-one or [allo]pregnanolone). Although these steroids robustly enhance current gated by α1β2δ GABAR, we have shown that 3α,5[α]β-THP effects at recombinant α4β2δ GABAR depend on the direction of Cl- flux, where the steroid increases outward flux, but decreases inward flux through the receptor. This polarity-dependent inhibition of α4β2δ GABAR resulted from an increase in the rate and extent of rapid desensitization of the receptor, recorded from recombinant receptors expressed in HEK-293 cells with whole cell voltage clamp techniques. This inhibitory effect of 3α,5[α]β-THP was not observed at other receptor subtypes, suggesting it was selective for α4β2δ GABAR. Furthermore, it was prevented by a selective mutation of basic residue arginine 353 in the intracellular loop of the receptor, suggesting that this might be a putative chloride modulatory site. Expression of α4βδ GABAR increases markedly at extrasynaptic sites at the onset of puberty in female mice. At this time, 3α,5[α]β–THP decreased the inhibitory tonic current, recorded with perforated patch techniques to maintain the physiological Cl- gradient. By decreasing this shunting inhibition, 3α,5[α]β–THP increased the excitability of CA1 hippocampal pyramidal cells at puberty: These effects of the steroid were opposite to those observed before puberty when 3α,5[α]β–THP reduced neuronal excitability as a pre-synaptic effect. Behaviorally, the excitatory effect of 3α,5[α]β–THP was reflected as an increase in anxiety at the onset of puberty in female mice. Taken together, these findings suggest that the emergence of α4β2δ GABAR at the onset of puberty reverses the effect of a stress steroid. These findings may be relevant for the mood swings and increased response to stressful events reported in adolescence

  7. GABAA receptor-mediated neurotransmission: Not so simple after all.

    PubMed

    Knoflach, Frédéric; Hernandez, Maria-Clemencia; Bertrand, Daniel

    2016-09-01

    GABAA receptors are ligand-gated ion channels that form a fundamental component of inhibitory neurotransmission in the central and peripheral nervous systems. However, since the initial recordings of inhibitory electrical activity of neurons in response to GABA, these receptors have been found to play a more complex role and can, under some circumstances, function in an excitatory manner. This has been demonstrated via electrophysiological recordings conducted in both mature and developing neurons from different brain regions, as well as in various subcellular locations such as dendritic and axonal membranes. The balance between the inhibitory and excitatory effects mediated by GABAA receptor activation depends not only on multiple factors that govern the equilibrium of the transmembrane chloride gradient, but also on bicarbonate concentration. Moreover, electrophysiological and fluorescence measurements have revealed that a spatial distribution of the chloride gradient exists within neurons, which locally influences the effects mediated by GABAA receptor activation. In recent years, it has also become apparent that intra-neuronal chloride concentration is partially regulated by cation-chloride co-transporters (CCCs), in particular NKCC1 and KCC2. The aim of the present commentary is to discuss, in light of the latest findings, potential implications of the tight spatial and temporal regulation of chloride equilibrium in health and disease, as well as its relevance for the therapeutic effects of molecules acting at GABAA receptors. PMID:27002180

  8. Involvement of GABA(A) receptors in myoclonus.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, R R; Truong, D D; Nguyen, K D; Dang, A T; Hoang, T T; Vo, P Q; Sandroni, P

    2000-01-01

    Alterations in multiple neurochemical systems have been reported in animal and human studies of posthypoxic myoclonus. It is impossible, however, to establish causative relationships between the observed changes and the myoclonic movements from these studies. Therefore, to establish causative links between neurochemical changes and myoclonus, ligands that target neurotransmitter systems that are altered in posthypoxic myoclonus were microinjected into the lateral ventricles of normal rats to identify the changes that can produce myoclonus. Of the ligands that were tested, only the GABA(A) antagonists produced myoclonus after intracerebroventricular administration, suggesting the importance of disinhibition of GABAergic systems in myoclonus. To further examine the role of GABA in myoclonus, GABAergic antagonists were microinjected into the nucleus reticularis of the thalamus (NRT), an area of the brain in which extensive pathologic changes are seen in posthypoxic animals. GABA(A), but not GABA(B), antagonists produced myoclonus after microinjection into the NRT. Earlier investigators have further reported the ability of GABA(A) antagonists to produce myoclonus after microinjection into the caudate. The data therefore suggest that disruption of activity at GABA(A) receptors at any one of a number of levels in the neural axis can produce myoclonus. PMID:10755272

  9. Modulatory Effects of Eschscholzia californica Alkaloids on Recombinant GABAA Receptors.

    PubMed

    Fedurco, Milan; Gregorová, Jana; Šebrlová, Kristýna; Kantorová, Jana; Peš, Ondřej; Baur, Roland; Sigel, Erwin; Táborská, Eva

    2015-01-01

    The California poppy (Eschscholzia californica Cham.) contains a variety of natural compounds including several alkaloids found exclusively in this plant. Because of the sedative, anxiolytic, and analgesic effects, this herb is currently sold in pharmacies in many countries. However, our understanding of these biological effects at the molecular level is still lacking. Alkaloids detected in E. californica could be hypothesized to act at GABAA receptors, which are widely expressed in the brain mainly at the inhibitory interneurons. Electrophysiological studies on a recombinant α 1 β 2 γ 2 GABAA receptor showed no effect of N-methyllaurotetanine at concentrations lower than 30 μM. However, (S)-reticuline behaved as positive allosteric modulator at the α 3, α 5, and α 6 isoforms of GABAA receptors. The depressant properties of aerial parts of E. californica are assigned to chloride-current modulation by (S)-reticuline at the α 3 β 2 γ 2 and α 5 β 2 γ 2 GABAA receptors. Interestingly, α 1, α 3, and α 5 were not significantly affected by (R)-reticuline, 1,2-tetrahydroreticuline, codeine, and morphine-suspected (S)-reticuline metabolites in the rodent brain. PMID:26509084

  10. Novel positive allosteric modulators of GABAA receptors with anesthetic activity

    PubMed Central

    Maldifassi, Maria C.; Baur, Roland; Pierce, David; Nourmahnad, Anahita; Forman, Stuart A.; Sigel, Erwin

    2016-01-01

    GABAA receptors are the main inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors in the brain and are targets for numerous clinically important drugs such as benzodiazepines, anxiolytics and anesthetics. We previously identified novel ligands of the classical benzodiazepine binding pocket in α1β2γ2 GABAA receptors using an experiment-guided virtual screening (EGVS) method. This screen also identified novel ligands for intramembrane low affinity diazepam site(s). In the current study we have further characterized compounds 31 and 132 identified with EGVS as well as 4-O-methylhonokiol. We investigated the site of action of these compounds in α1β2γ2 GABAA receptors expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes using voltage-clamp electrophysiology combined with a benzodiazepine site antagonist and transmembrane domain mutations. All three compounds act mainly through the two β+/α− subunit transmembrane interfaces of the GABAA receptors. We then used concatenated receptors to dissect the involvement of individual β+/α− interfaces. We further demonstrated that these compounds have anesthetic activity in a small aquatic animal model, Xenopus laevis tadpoles. The newly identified compounds may serve as scaffolds for the development of novel anesthetics. PMID:27198062

  11. Modulatory Effects of Eschscholzia californica Alkaloids on Recombinant GABAA Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Fedurco, Milan; Gregorová, Jana; Šebrlová, Kristýna; Kantorová, Jana; Peš, Ondřej; Baur, Roland; Sigel, Erwin; Táborská, Eva

    2015-01-01

    The California poppy (Eschscholzia californica Cham.) contains a variety of natural compounds including several alkaloids found exclusively in this plant. Because of the sedative, anxiolytic, and analgesic effects, this herb is currently sold in pharmacies in many countries. However, our understanding of these biological effects at the molecular level is still lacking. Alkaloids detected in E. californica could be hypothesized to act at GABAA receptors, which are widely expressed in the brain mainly at the inhibitory interneurons. Electrophysiological studies on a recombinant α1β2γ2 GABAA receptor showed no effect of N-methyllaurotetanine at concentrations lower than 30 μM. However, (S)-reticuline behaved as positive allosteric modulator at the α3, α5, and α6 isoforms of GABAA receptors. The depressant properties of aerial parts of E. californica are assigned to chloride-current modulation by (S)-reticuline at the α3β2γ2 and α5β2γ2 GABAA receptors. Interestingly, α1, α3, and α5 were not significantly affected by (R)-reticuline, 1,2-tetrahydroreticuline, codeine, and morphine—suspected (S)-reticuline metabolites in the rodent brain. PMID:26509084

  12. Tandem Subunits Effectively Constrain GABAA Receptor Stoichiometry and Recapitulate Receptor Kinetics But Are Insensitive to GABAA Receptor-Associated Protein

    PubMed Central

    Boileau, Andrew J.; Pearce, Robert A.; Czajkowski, Cynthia

    2008-01-01

    GABAergic synapses likely contain multiple GABAA receptor subtypes, making postsynaptic currents difficult to dissect. However, even in heterologous expression systems, analysis of receptors composed of α, β, and γ subunits can be confounded by receptors expressed from α and β subunits alone. To produce recombinant GABAA receptors containing fixed subunit stoichiometry, we coexpressed individual subunits with a “tandem” α1 subunit linked to a β2 subunit. Cotransfection of the γ2 subunit with αβ-tandem subunits in human embryonic kidney 293 cells produced currents that were similar in their macroscopic kinetics, single-channel amplitudes, and pharmacology to overexpression of the γ subunit with nonlinked α1 and β2 subunits. Similarly, expression of α subunits together with αβ-tandem subunits produced receptors having physiological and pharmacological characteristics that closely matched cotransfection of α with β subunits. In this first description of tandem GABAA subunits measured with patch-clamp and rapid agonist application techniques, we conclude that incorporation of αβ-tandem subunits can be used to fix stoichiometry and to establish the intrinsic kinetic properties of α1β2 and α1β2γ2 receptors. We used this method to test whether the accessory protein GABAA receptor-associated protein (GABARAP) alters GABAA receptor properties directly or influences subunit composition. In recombinant receptors with fixed stoichiometry, coexpression of GABARAP-enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) fusion protein had no effect on desensitization, deactivation, or diazepam potentiation of GABA-mediated currents. However, in α1β2γ2S transfections in which stoichiometry was not fixed, GABARAP-EGFP altered desensitization, deactivation, and diazepam potentiation of GABA-mediated currents. The data suggest that GABARAP does not alter receptor kinetics directly but by facilitating surface expression of αβγ receptors. PMID:16339017

  13. Selective antagonism of the GABA(A) receptor by ciprofloxacin and biphenylacetic acid.

    PubMed

    Green, M A; Halliwell, R F

    1997-10-01

    1. Previous studies have shown that ciprofloxacin and biphenylacetic acid (BPAA) synergistically inhibit y-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptors. In the present study, we have investigated the actions of these two drugs on other neuronal ligand-gated ion channels. 2. Agonist-evoked depolarizations were recorded from rat vagus and optic nerves in vitro by use of an extracellular recording technique. 3. GABA (50 microM)-evoked responses, in the vagus nerve in vitro, were inhibited by bicuculline (0.3-10 microM) and picrotoxin (0.3-10 microM), with IC50 values and 95% confidence intervals (CI) of 1.2 microM (1.1-1.4) and 3.6 microM (3.0-4.3), respectively, and were potentiated by sodium pentobarbitone (30 microM) and diazepam (1 microM) to (mean+/-s.e.mean) 168+/-18% and 117+/-4% of control, respectively. 5-Hydroxytryptamine (5-HT; 0.5 microM)-evoked responses were inhibited by MDL 72222 (1 microM) to 10+/-4% of control; DMPP (10 microM)-evoked responses were inhibited by hexamethonium (100 microM) to 12+/-5% of control, and alphabetaMeATP (30 microM)-evoked responses were inhibited by PPADS (10 microM) to 21+/-5% of control. Together, these data are consistent with activation of GABA(A), 5-HT3, nicotinic ACh and P2X receptors, respectively. 4 Ciprofloxacin (10-3000 microM) inhibited GABA(A)-mediated responses in the vagus nerve with an IC50 (and 95% CI) of 202 microM (148-275). BPAA (1-1000 microM) had little or no effect on the GABA(A)-mediated response but concentration-dependently potentiated the effects of ciprofloxacin by up to 33,000 times. 5. Responses mediated by 5-HT3, nicotinic ACh and P2X receptors in the vagus nerve and strychnine-sensitive glycine receptors in the optic nerve were little or unaffected by ciprofloxacin (100 microM), BPAA (100 microM) or the combination of these drugs (both at 100 microM). 6. GABA (1 mM)-evoked responses in the optic nerve were inhibited by bicuculline with an IC50 of 3.6 microM (2.8-4.5), a value not significantly different

  14. Eugenol Inhibits the GABAA Current in Trigeminal Ganglion Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Sang Hoon; Moon, Jee Youn; Jung, Sung Jun; Kang, Jin Gu; Choi, Seung Pyo; Jang, Jun Ho

    2015-01-01

    Eugenol has sedative, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and analgesic effects, but also serves as an irritant through the regulation of a different set of ion channels. Activation of gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors on sensory neurons leads to the stabilization of neuronal excitability but contributes to formalin-induced inflammatory pain. In this study, we examined the effect of eugenol on the GABA-induced current in rat trigeminal ganglia (TG) neurons and in human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells expressing the GABAA receptor α1β2γ2 subtype using the whole-cell patch clamp technique. RT-PCR and Western blot analysis were used to confirm the expression of GABAA receptor γ2 subunit mRNA and protein in the TG and hippocampus. Eugenol decreased the amplitude ratio of the GABA-induced current to 27.5 ± 3.2% (p < 0.05) in TG neurons, which recovered after a 3-min washout. In HEK 293 cells expressing the α1β2γ2 subtype, eugenol inhibited GABA-induced currents in a dose-dependent manner. Application of eugenol also decreased the GABA response in the presence of a G-protein blocker. Eugenol pretreatment with different concentrations of GABA resulted in similar inhibition of the GABA-induced current in a non-competitive manner. In conclusion, eugenol inhibits the GABA-induced current in TG neurons and HEK 293 cells expressing the GABAA receptor in a reversible, dose-dependent, and non-competitive manner, but not via the G-protein pathway. We suggest that the GABAA receptor could be a molecular target for eugenol in the modulation of nociceptive information. PMID:25635877

  15. GABAA receptor modulating steroid antagonists (GAMSA) are functional in vivo.

    PubMed

    Johansson, Maja; Strömberg, Jessica; Ragagnin, Gianna; Doverskog, Magnus; Bäckström, Torbjörn

    2016-06-01

    GABAA receptor modulating steroid antagonists (GAMSA) selectively inhibit neurosteroid-mediated enhancement of GABA-evoked currents at the GABAA receptor. 3α-hydroxy-neurosteroids, notably allopregnanolone and tetrahydrodeoxycorticosterone (THDOC), potentiate GABAA receptor-mediated currents. On the contrary, various 3β-hydroxy-steroids antagonize this positive neurosteroid-mediated modulation. Importantly, GAMSAs are specific antagonists of the positive neurosteroid-modulation of the receptor and do not inhibit GABA-evoked currents. Allopregnanolone and THDOC have both negative and positive actions. Allopregnanolone can impair encoding/consolidation and retrieval of memories. Chronic administration of a physiological allopregnanolone concentration reduces cognition in mice models of Alzheimer's disease. In humans an allopregnanolone challenge impairs episodic memory and in hepatic encephalopathy cognitive deficits are accompanied by increased brain ammonia and allopregnanolone. Hippocampal slices react in vitro to ammonia by allopregnanolone synthesis in CA1 neurons, which blocks long-term potentiation (LTP). Thus, allopregnanolone may impair learning and memory by interfering with hippocampal LTP. Contrary, pharmacological treatment with allopregnanolone can promote neurogenesis and positively influence learning and memory of trace eye-blink conditioning in mice. In rat the GAMSA UC1011 inhibits an allopregnanolone-induced learning impairment and the GAMSA GR3027 restores learning and motor coordination in rats with hepatic encephalopathy. In addition, the GAMSA isoallopregnanolone antagonizes allopregnanolone-induced anesthesia in rats, and in humans it antagonizes allopregnanolone-induced sedation and reductions in saccadic eye velocity. 17PA is also an effective GAMSA in vivo, as it antagonizes allopregnanolone-induced anesthesia and spinal analgesia in rats. In vitro the allopregnanolone/THDOC-increased GABA-mediated GABAA receptor activity is antagonized

  16. Azogabazine; a photochromic antagonist of the GABAA receptor.

    PubMed

    Huckvale, Rosemary; Mortensen, Martin; Pryde, David; Smart, Trevor G; Baker, James R

    2016-07-12

    The design and synthesis of azogabazine is described, which represents a highly potent (IC50 = 23 nM) photoswitchable antagonist of the GABAA receptor. An azologization strategy is adopted, in which a benzyl phenyl ether in a high affinity gabazine analogue is replaced by an azobenzene, with resultant retention of antagonist potency. We show that cycling from blue to UV light, switching between trans and cis isomeric forms, leads to photochemically controlled antagonism of the GABA ion channel. PMID:27327397

  17. Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Quantification of GABAA Receptors in the Brain of Fragile X Patients

    PubMed Central

    Van der Aa, Nathalie; Goffin, Karolien; Koole, Michel; Porke, Kathleen; Van De Velde, Marc; Rooms, Liesbeth; Van Paesschen, Wim; Van Esch, Hilde; Van Laere, Koen; Kooy, R. Frank

    2015-01-01

    Over the last several years, evidence has accumulated that the GABAA receptor is compromised in animal models for fragile X syndrome (FXS), a common hereditary form of intellectual disability. In mouse and fly models, agonists of the GABAA receptor were able to rescue specific consequences of the fragile X mutation. Here, we imaged and quantified GABAA receptors in vivo in brain of fragile X patients using Positron Emission Topography (PET) and [11C]flumazenil, a known high-affinity and specific ligand for the benzodiazepine site of GABAA receptors. We measured regional GABAA receptor availability in 10 fragile X patients and 10 control subjects. We found a significant reduction of on average 10% in GABAA receptor binding potential throughout the brain in fragile X patients. In the thalamus, the brain region showing the largest difference, the GABAA receptor availability was even reduced with 17%. This is one of the first reports of a PET study of human fragile X brain and directly demonstrates that the GABAA receptor availability is reduced in fragile X patients. The study reinforces previous hypotheses that the GABAA receptor is a potential target for rational pharmacological treatment of fragile X syndrome. PMID:26222316

  18. Identification of a novel protein complex containing ASIC1a and GABAA receptors and their interregulation.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Dongbo; Ning, Nannan; Lei, Zhen; Sun, Hua; Wei, Chuanfei; Chen, Dawei; Li, Jingxin

    2014-01-01

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) belong to the family of the epithelial sodium channel/degenerin (ENaC/DEG) and are activated by extracellular protons. They are widely distributed within both the central and peripheral nervous systems. ASICs were modified by the activation of γ-aminobutyric acid receptors (GABAA), a ligand-gated chloride channels, in hippocampal neurons. In contrast, the activity of GABAA receptors were also modulated by extracellular pH. However so far, the mechanisms underlying this intermodulation remain obscure. We hypothesized that these two receptors-GABAA receptors and ASICs channels might form a novel protein complex and functionally interact with each other. In the study reported here, we found that ASICs were modified by the activation of GABAA receptors either in HEK293 cells following transient co-transfection of GABAA and ASIC1a or in primary cultured dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons. Conversely, activation of ASIC1a also modifies the GABAA receptor-channel kinetics. Immunoassays showed that both GABAA and ASIC1a proteins were co-immunoprecipitated mutually either in HEK293 cells co-transfected with GABAA and ASIC1a or in primary cultured DRG neurons. Our results indicate that putative GABAA and ASIC1a channels functionally interact with each other, possibly via an inter-molecular association by forming a novel protein complex. PMID:24923912

  19. Neurexins Physically and Functionally Interact with GABAA-receptors

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Chen; Atasoy, Deniz; Araç, Demet; Yang, Xiaofei; Fucillo, Marc V.; Robison, Alfred J.; Ko, Jaewon; Brunger, Axel T.; Südhof, Thomas C.

    2011-01-01

    Neurexins are presynaptic cell-adhesion molecules that form trans-synaptic complexes with postsynaptic neuroligins. When overexpressed in non-neuronal cells, neurexins induce formation of postsynaptic specializations in co-cultured neurons, suggesting that neurexins are synaptogenic. However, we now find that when overexpressed in neurons, neurexins do not increase synapse density, but instead selectively suppressed GABAergic synaptic transmission without decreasing GABAergic synapse numbers. This suppression was mediated by all subtypes of neurexins tested, in a cell-autonomous and neuroligin-independent manner. Strikingly, addition of recombinant neurexin to cultured neurons at sub-micromolar concentrations induced the same suppression of GABAergic synaptic transmission as neurexin overexpression. Moreover, experiments with native brain proteins and with purified recombinant proteins revealed that neurexins directly and stoichiometrically bind to GABAA-receptors, suggesting that they decrease GABAergic synaptic responses by interacting with GABAA-receptors. Our findings suggest that besides their other well-documented interactions, presynaptic neurexins directly act on postsynaptic GABAA-receptors, which may contribute to regulate the excitatory/inhibitory balance in brain. PMID:20471353

  20. Cyclohexanol analogues are positive modulators of GABAA receptor currents and act as general anaesthetics in vivo

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    GABAA receptors meet all the pharmacological criteria required to be considered important general anaesthetic targets. In the following study, the modulatory effects of various commercially available and novel cyclohexanol were investigated on recombinant human '-aminobutyric acid (GABAA, a1ß2'2s) r...

  1. Ionic Mechanisms of Neuronal Excitation by Inhibitory GABA_A Receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Staley, Kevin J.; Soldo, Brandi L.; Proctor, William R.

    1995-08-01

    Gamma-aminobutyric acid A (GABA_A) receptors are the principal mediators of synaptic inhibition, and yet when intensely activated, dendritic GABA_A receptors excite rather than inhibit neurons. The membrane depolarization mediated by GABA_A receptors is a result of the differential, activity-dependent collapse of the opposing concentration gradients of chloride and bicarbonate, the anions that permeate the GABA_A ionophore. Because this depolarization diminishes the voltage-dependent block of the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor by magnesium, the activity-dependent depolarization mediated by GABA is sufficient to account for frequency modulation of synaptic NMDA receptor activation. Anionic gradient shifts may represent a mechanism whereby the rate and coherence of synaptic activity determine whether dendritic GABA_A receptor activation is excitatory or inhibitory.

  2. PKCε and allopregnanolone: functional cross-talk at the GABAA receptor level

    PubMed Central

    Puia, Giulia; Ravazzini, Federica; Castelnovo, Luca Franco; Magnaghi, Valerio

    2015-01-01

    Changes in GABAergic inhibition occur during physiological processes, during response to drugs and in various pathologies. These changes can be achieved through direct allosteric modifications at the γ-amino butyric acid (GABA) type A (GABAA) receptor protein level, or by altering the synthesis, trafficking and stability of the receptor. Neurosteroids (NSs) and protein kinase C (PKC) are potent modulators of GABAA receptors and their effects are presumably intermingled, even though evidence for this hypothesis is only partially explored. However, several PKC isoforms are able to phosphorylate the GABAA receptor, producing different functional effects. We focused on the ε isoform, that has been correlated to the sensitivity of the GABAA receptor to allosteric modulators and whose expression may be regulated in peripheral sensory neurons by NSs. The cross-talk between PKC-ε and NSs, leading to changes in GABAA receptor functionality, is considered and discussed in this perspective. PMID:25852476

  3. Zolpidem withdrawal induced uncoupling of GABA(A) receptors in vitro associated with altered GABA(A) receptor subunit mRNA expression.

    PubMed

    Jembrek, Maja Jazvinšćak; Vlainić, Josipa; Šuran, Jelena

    2015-01-01

    Hypnotic zolpidem produces its effects via the benzodiazepine binding site in α1-containing GABAA receptors. The aim of the study was to assess the influence of duration of zolpidem treatment and its withdrawal, as well as the role of alpha1-containing GABAA receptors in the development of physical dependence and tolerance. Namely, recombinant receptors can be used to characterize mechanisms involved in different processes in the brain and to delineate the contribution of specific receptor subtypes. To address the influence of chronic zolpidem treatment we exposed HEK293 cells stably expressing alpha1beta2gamma2S recombinant GABAA receptors for seven consecutive days, while withdrawal periods lasted for 24, 48, 72 and 96 hours. Using radioligand binding studies we determined that chronic zolpidem treatment did not induce changes in either GABAA receptor number or in the expression of subunit mRNAs. We observed the enhancement of binding sites and upregulated expression of subunit mRNAs only following 96-hour withdrawal. Moreover, zolpidem treatment and its withdrawal (All time points) induced functional uncoupling between GABA and benzodiazepine binding sites in the GABAA receptor complex. Accordingly, it might be assumed that zolpidem withdrawal-induced uncoupling of GABAA receptors is associated with altered GABAA receptor subunit mRNA expression. The results presented here provide an insight into molecular and cellular mechanisms probably underlying adaptive changes of GABAA receptor function in response to chronic usage and withdrawal of zolpidem and perhaps the observed molecular changes could be linked to the tolerance and dependence produced upon prolonged treatment with other GABAergic drugs. PMID:26232993

  4. SSRI augmentation of antipsychotic alters expression of GABA(A) receptor and related genes in PMC of schizophrenia patients.

    PubMed

    Silver, Henry; Susser, Ehud; Danovich, Lena; Bilker, Warren; Youdim, Moussa; Goldin, Vladimir; Weinreb, Orly

    2011-06-01

    Clinical studies have shown that negative symptoms of schizophrenia unresponsive to antipsychotic given alone can improve after augmentation with SSRI antidepressant. Laboratory investigations into the mechanism of this synergism showed that co-administration of SSRI and antipsychotic produces changes in GABA(A) receptor and related systems, which differ from the effects of each drug alone. To examine the clinical relevance of these findings, the current study examined the effects of SSRI augmentation treatment on GABA(A) receptor and related systems in schizophrenia patients. Schizophrenia patients with high levels of negative symptoms unresponsive to antipsychotic treatment received add-on fluvoxamine (100 mg/d). Blood was taken before and 1, 3 and 6 wk after adding fluvoxamine and peripheral mononuclear cells (PMC) isolated. RNA encoding for GABA(A)β3, 5-HT2A, and 5-HT7 receptors, PKCβ2, and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) was assayed with real-time RT-PCR. Plasma BDNF protein was assayed using ELISA. Clinical symptoms were assessed with validated rating scales. We found significant increase in mRNA encoding for GABA(A)β3 and 5-HT2A, 5-HT7 receptors and BDNF and a reduction in PKCβ2 mRNA. Plasma BDNF protein concentrations were increased. There were significant correlations among the genes. Clinical symptoms improved significantly. mRNA expression of PKCβ2, 5-HT2A and 5-HT7 showed significant associations with clinical symptoms. Combined SSRI+antipsychotic treatment is associated with changes in GABA(A) receptor and in related signalling systems in patients. These changes may be part of the mechanism of clinically effective drug action and may prove to be biomarkers of pharmacological response. PMID:21208484

  5. GABA-independent GABAA Receptor Openings Maintain Tonic Currents

    PubMed Central

    Wlodarczyk, Agnieszka I.; Sylantyev, Sergiy; Herd, Murray B.; Kersanté, Flavie; Lambert, Jeremy J.; Rusakov, Dmitri A.; Linthorst, Astrid C.E.; Semyanov, Alexey; Belelli, Delia; Pavlov, Ivan; Walker, Matthew C.

    2013-01-01

    Activation of GABAA receptors (GABAARs) produces two forms of inhibition: ‘phasic’ inhibition generated by the rapid, transient activation of synaptic GABAARs by presynaptic GABA release, and tonic inhibition generated by the persistent activation of peri- or extrasynaptic GABAARs which can detect extracellular GABA. Such tonic GABAAR-mediated currents are particularly evident in dentate granule cells in which they play a major role in regulating cell excitability. Here we show that in rat dentate granule cells in ex-vivo hippocampal slices, tonic currents are predominantly generated by GABA-independent GABAA receptor openings. This tonic GABAAR conductance is resistant to the competitive GABAAR antagonist SR95531, which at high concentrations acts as a partial agonist, but can be blocked by an open channel blocker picrotoxin. When slices are perfused with 200 nM GABA, a concentration that is comparable to cerebrospinal fluid concentrations but is twice that measured by us in the hippocampus in vivo using zero-net-flux microdialysis, negligible GABA is detected by dentate granule cells. Spontaneously opening GABAARs, therefore, maintain dentate granule cell tonic currents in the face of low extracellular GABA concentrations. PMID:23447601

  6. Souroubea sympetala (Marcgraviaceae): a medicinal plant that exerts anxiolysis through interaction with the GABAA benzodiazepine receptor.

    PubMed

    Mullally, Martha; Cayer, Christian; Kramp, Kari; Otárola Rojas, Marco; Sanchez Vindas, Pablo; Garcia, Mario; Poveda Alvarez, Luis; Durst, Tony; Merali, Zul; Trudeau, Vance L; Arnason, John T

    2014-09-01

    The mode of action of the anxiolytic medicinal plant Souroubea sympetala was investigated to test the hypothesis that extracts and the active principle act at the pharmacologically important GABAA-benzodiazepine (GABAA-BZD) receptor. Leaf extracts prepared by ethyl acetate extraction or supercritical extraction, previously determined to have 5.54 mg/g and 6.78 mg/g of the active principle, betulinic acid, respectively, reduced behavioural parameters associated with anxiety in a rat model. When animals were pretreated with the GABAA-BZD receptor antagonist flumazenil, followed by the plant extracts, or a more soluble derivative of the active principle, the methyl ester of betulinic acid (MeBA), flumazenil eliminated the anxiety-reducing effect of plant extracts and MeBA, demonstrating that S. sympetala acts via an agonist action on the GABAA-BZD receptor. An in vitro GABAA-BZD competitive receptor binding assay also demonstrated that S. sympetala extracts have an affinity for the GABAA-BZD receptor, with an EC50 value of 123 μg/mL (EtOAc leaf extract) and 154 μg/mL (supercritical CO2 extract). These experiments indicate that S. sympetala acts at the GABAA-BZD receptor to elicit anxiolysis. PMID:25140794

  7. Aging of whiskey increases the potentiation of GABA(A) receptor response.

    PubMed

    Koda, Hirofumi; Hossain, Sheikh Julfikar; Kiso, Yoshinobu; Aoshima, Hitoshi

    2003-08-27

    It is known that the target of most mood-defining compounds such as ethanol is an ionotropic gamma-aminobutyric acid receptor (GABA(A) receptor). The potentiation of the response of these inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors induces anxiolytic, sedative, and anesthetic activities in the human brain. Because both extracts of whiskey by pentane and fragrant components in whiskey potentiate the GABA(A) receptor-mediated response, GABA(A) receptors were expressed in Xenopus oocyte by injecting cRNAs prepared from the cloned cDNA for the alpha(1) and beta(1) subunits of the bovine receptors in order to study the effects of whiskey itself on the GABA(A) receptor-mediated response. Whiskey itself also potentiated the electrical responses of GABA(A) receptors generally more than ethanol at the same concentration as that of the whiskey. The potentiation of the GABA(A) receptor-mediated response increased with the aging period of the whiskey. Inhalation of whiskey to mice increased the sleeping time induced by pentobarbital more than that of the same concentration of ethanol as the whiskey. These results suggest that not only ethanol but also minor components in whiskey play an important role in the potentiation of GABA(A) receptor-mediated response and possibly the sedative effect of whiskey. Although the minor components are present in extremely small quantities compared with ethanol in alcoholic beverages, they may modulate the mood or consciousness of humans through the potentiation of the GABA(A) receptor response after absorption into the brain, because these hydrophobic compounds are easily absorbed into the brain across the blood-brain barrier and are several thousands times as potent as ethanol in the potentiation of the GABA(A) receptor-mediated response. PMID:12926865

  8. Amiloride and GMQ Allosteric Modulation of the GABA-A ρ1 Receptor: Influences of the Intersubunit Site

    PubMed Central

    Snell, Heather D.

    2015-01-01

    Amiloride, a diuretic used in the treatment of hypertension and congestive heart failure, and 2-guanidine-4-methylquinazoline (GMQ) are guanidine compounds that modulate acid-sensing ion channels. Both compounds have demonstrated affinity for a variety of membrane proteins, including members of the Cys-loop family of ligand-gated ion channels, such as the heteromeric GABA-A αβγ receptors. The actions of these guanidine compounds on the homomeric GABA-A ρ1 receptor remains unclear, especially in light of how many GABA-A αβγ receptor modulators have different effects in the GABA-A ρ1 receptors. We sought to characterize the influence of amiloride and GMQ on the human GABA-A ρ1 receptors using whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology. The diuretic amiloride potentiated the human GABA-A ρ1 GABA-mediated current, whereas GMQ antagonized the receptor. Furthermore, a GABA-A second transmembrane domain site, the intersubunit site, responsible for allosteric modulation in the heteromeric GABA-A receptors mediated amiloride’s positive allosteric actions. In contrast, the mutation did not remove GMQ antagonism but only changed the guanidine compound’s potency within the human GABA-A ρ1 receptor. Through modeling and introduction of point mutations, we propose that the GABA-A ρ1 intersubunit site plays a role in mediating the allosteric effects of amiloride and GMQ. PMID:25829529

  9. The GABAA receptor is an FMRP target with therapeutic potential in fragile X syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Braat, Sien; D'Hulst, Charlotte; Heulens, Inge; De Rubeis, Silvia; Mientjes, Edwin; Nelson, David L; Willemsen, Rob; Bagni, Claudia; Van Dam, Debby; De Deyn, Peter P; Kooy, R Frank

    2015-01-01

    Previous research indicates that the GABAAergic system is involved in the pathophysiology of the fragile X syndrome, a frequent form of inherited intellectual disability and associated with autism spectrum disorder. However, the molecular mechanism underlying GABAAergic deficits has remained largely unknown. Here, we demonstrate reduced mRNA expression of GABAA receptor subunits in the cortex and cerebellum of young Fmr1 knockout mice. In addition, we show that the previously reported underexpression of specific subunits of the GABAA receptor can be corrected in YAC transgenic rescue mice, containing the full-length human FMR1 gene in an Fmr1 knockout background. Moreover, we demonstrate that FMRP directly binds several GABAA receptor mRNAs. Finally, positive allosteric modulation of GABAA receptors with the neurosteroid ganaxolone can modulate specific behaviors in Fmr1 knockout mice, emphasizing the therapeutic potential of the receptor. PMID:25790165

  10. Direct activation of GABAA receptors by substances in the organic acid fraction of Japanese sake.

    PubMed

    Izu, Hanae; Shigemori, Kensuke; Eguchi, Masaya; Kawane, Shuhei; Fujii, Shouko; Kitamura, Yuji; Aoshima, Hitoshi; Yamada, Yasue

    2017-01-01

    We investigated the effect of substances present in Japanese sake on the response of ionotropic γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Sake was fractionated by ion-exchange chromatography. The fraction containing organic acids (OA fraction) showed agonist activities on the GABAA receptor. OA fractions from sake were analyzed by capillary electrophoresis time-of-flight mass spectrometry (CE-TOFMS). Of the 64 compounds identified, 13 compounds showed GABAA receptor agonist activities. Especially, l-lactic acid showed high agonist activity and its EC50 value was 37μM. Intraperitoneal injections of l-lactic acid, gluconic acid, and pyruvic acid (10, 10, and 5mg/kg BW, respectively), which showed agonistic activity on the GABAA receptor, led to significant anxiolytic effects during an elevated plus-maze test in mice. PMID:27507485

  11. The GABAA receptor is an FMRP target with therapeutic potential in fragile X syndrome.

    PubMed

    Braat, Sien; D'Hulst, Charlotte; Heulens, Inge; De Rubeis, Silvia; Mientjes, Edwin; Nelson, David L; Willemsen, Rob; Bagni, Claudia; Van Dam, Debby; De Deyn, Peter P; Kooy, R Frank

    2015-01-01

    Previous research indicates that the GABAAergic system is involved in the pathophysiology of the fragile X syndrome, a frequent form of inherited intellectual disability and associated with autism spectrum disorder. However, the molecular mechanism underlying GABAAergic deficits has remained largely unknown. Here, we demonstrate reduced mRNA expression of GABAA receptor subunits in the cortex and cerebellum of young Fmr1 knockout mice. In addition, we show that the previously reported underexpression of specific subunits of the GABAA receptor can be corrected in YAC transgenic rescue mice, containing the full-length human FMR1 gene in an Fmr1 knockout background. Moreover, we demonstrate that FMRP directly binds several GABAA receptor mRNAs. Finally, positive allosteric modulation of GABAA receptors with the neurosteroid ganaxolone can modulate specific behaviors in Fmr1 knockout mice, emphasizing the therapeutic potential of the receptor. PMID:25790165

  12. GABAA receptor beta subunit heterogeneity: functional expression of cloned cDNAs.

    PubMed Central

    Ymer, S; Schofield, P R; Draguhn, A; Werner, P; Köhler, M; Seeburg, P H

    1989-01-01

    Cloned cDNAs encoding two new beta subunits of the rat and bovine GABAA receptor have been isolated using a degenerate oligonucleotide probe based on a highly conserved peptide sequence in the second transmembrane domain of GABAA receptor subunits. The beta 2 and beta 3 subunits share approximately 72% sequence identity with the previously characterized beta 1 polypeptide. Northern analysis showed that both beta 2 and beta 3 mRNAs are more abundant in the brain than beta 1 mRNA. All three beta subunit encoding cDNAs were also identified in a library constructed from adrenal medulla RNA. Each beta subunit, when co-expressed in Xenopus oocytes with an alpha subunit, forms functional GABAA receptors. These results, together with the known alpha subunit heterogeneity, suggest that a variety of related but functionally distinct GABAA receptor subtypes are generated by different subunit combinations. Images PMID:2548852

  13. pH-dependent inhibition of native GABAA receptors by HEPES

    PubMed Central

    Hugel, S; Kadiri, N; Rodeau, JL; Gaillard, S; Schlichter, R

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Artificial buffers such as HEPES are extensively used to control extracellular pH (pHe) to investigate the effect of H+ ions on GABAA receptor function. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH In neurones cultured from spinal cord dorsal horn (DH), dorsal root ganglia (DRG) and cerebellar granule cells (GC) of neonatal rats, we studied the effect of pHe on currents induced by GABAA receptor agonists, controlling pHe with HCO3- or different concentrations of HEPES. KEY RESULTS Changing HEPES concentration from 1 to 20 mM at constant pHe strongly inhibited the currents induced by submaximal GABA applications, but not those induced by glycine or glutamate, on DH, DRG or GC neurones, increasing twofold the EC50 for GABA in DH neurones and GC. Submaximal GABAA receptor-mediated currents were also inhibited by piperazine-N,N′-bis(2-ethanesulfonic acid) (PIPES), 3-(N-morpholino)propanesulfonic acid, tris(hydroxymethyl)aminomethane or imidazole. PIPES and HEPES, both piperazine derivatives, similarly inhibited GABAA receptors, whereas the other buffers had weaker effects and 2-(N-morpholino)ethanesulfonic acid had no effect. HEPES-induced inhibition of submaximal GABAA receptor-mediated currents was unaffected by diethylpyrocarbonate, a histidine-modifying reagent. HEPES-induced inhibition of GABAA receptors was independent of membrane potential, HCO3- and intracellular Cl- concentration and was not modified by flumazenil, which blocks the benzodiazepine binding site. However, it strongly depended on pHe. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS Inhibition of GABAA receptors by HEPES depended on pHe, leading to an apparent H+-induced inhibition of DH GABAA receptors, unrelated to the pH sensitivity of these receptors in both low and physiological buffering conditions, suggesting that protonated HEPES caused this inhibition. PMID:22452286

  14. Stimulation of TM3 Leydig cell proliferation via GABAA receptors: A new role for testicular GABA

    PubMed Central

    Geigerseder, Christof; Doepner, Richard FG; Thalhammer, Andrea; Krieger, Annette; Mayerhofer, Artur

    2004-01-01

    The neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and subtypes of GABA receptors were recently identified in adult testes. Since adult Leydig cells possess both the GABA biosynthetic enzyme glutamate decarboxylase (GAD), as well as GABAA and GABAB receptors, it is possible that GABA may act as auto-/paracrine molecule to regulate Leydig cell function. The present study was aimed to examine effects of GABA, which may include trophic action. This assumption is based on reports pinpointing GABA as regulator of proliferation and differentiation of developing neurons via GABAA receptors. Assuming such a role for the developing testis, we studied whether GABA synthesis and GABA receptors are already present in the postnatal testis, where fetal Leydig cells and, to a much greater extend, cells of the adult Leydig cell lineage proliferate. Immunohistochemistry, RT-PCR, Western blotting and a radioactive enzymatic GAD assay evidenced that fetal Leydig cells of five-six days old rats possess active GAD protein, and that both fetal Leydig cells and cells of the adult Leydig cell lineage possess GABAA receptor subunits. TM3 cells, a proliferating mouse Leydig cell line, which we showed to possess GABAA receptor subunits by RT-PCR, served to study effects of GABA on proliferation. Using a colorimetric proliferation assay and Western Blotting for proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) we demonstrated that GABA or the GABAA agonist isoguvacine significantly increased TM3 cell number and PCNA content in TM3 cells. These effects were blocked by the GABAA antagonist bicuculline, implying a role for GABAA receptors. In conclusion, GABA increases proliferation of TM3 Leydig cells via GABAA receptor activation and proliferating Leydig cells in the postnatal rodent testis bear a GABAergic system. Thus testicular GABA may play an as yet unrecognized role in the development of Leydig cells during the differentiation of the testicular interstitial compartment. PMID:15040802

  15. Identification of the sites for CaMK-II-dependent phosphorylation of GABA(A) receptors.

    PubMed

    Houston, Catriona M; Lee, Henry H C; Hosie, Alastair M; Moss, Stephen J; Smart, Trevor G

    2007-06-15

    Phosphorylation can affect both the function and trafficking of GABA(A) receptors with significant consequences for neuronal excitability. Serine/threonine kinases can phosphorylate the intracellular loops between M3-4 of GABA(A) receptor beta and gamma subunits thereby modulating receptor function in heterologous expression systems and in neurons (1, 2). Specifically, CaMK-II has been demonstrated to phosphorylate the M3-4 loop of GABA(A) receptor subunits expressed as GST fusion proteins (3, 4). It also increases the amplitude of GABA(A) receptor-mediated currents in a number of neuronal cell types (5-7). To identify which substrate sites CaMK-II might phosphorylate and the consequent functional effects, we expressed recombinant GABA(A) receptors in NG108-15 cells, which have previously been shown to support CaMK-II modulation of GABA(A) receptors containing the beta3 subunit (8). We now demonstrate that CaMK-II mediates its effects on alpha1beta3 receptors via phosphorylation of Ser(383) within the M3-4 domain of the beta subunit. Ablation of beta3 subunit phosphorylation sites for CaMK-II revealed that for alphabetagamma receptors, CaMK-II has a residual effect on GABA currents that is not mediated by previously identified sites of CaMK-II phosphorylation. This residual effect is abolished by mutation of tyrosine phosphorylation sites, Tyr(365) and Tyr(367), on the gamma2S subunit, and by the tyrosine kinase inhibitor genistein. These results suggested that CaMK-II is capable of directly phosphorylating GABA(A) receptors and activating endogenous tyrosine kinases to phosphorylate the gamma2 subunit in NG108-15 cells. These findings were confirmed in a neuronal environment by expressing recombinant GABA(A) receptors in cerebellar granule neurons. PMID:17442679

  16. Regulation of Action Potential Waveforms by Axonal GABAA Receptors in Cortical Pyramidal Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Yang; Zhao, Yuan; Yang, Mingpo; Zeng, Shaoqun; Shu, Yousheng

    2014-01-01

    GABAA receptors distributed in somatodendritic compartments play critical roles in regulating neuronal activities, including spike timing and firing pattern; however, the properties and functions of GABAA receptors at the axon are still poorly understood. By recording from the cut end (bleb) of the main axon trunk of layer –5 pyramidal neurons in prefrontal cortical slices, we found that currents evoked by GABA iontophoresis could be blocked by picrotoxin, indicating the expression of GABAA receptors in axons. Stationary noise analysis revealed that single-channel properties of axonal GABAA receptors were similar to those of somatic receptors. Perforated patch recording with gramicidin revealed that the reversal potential of the GABA response was more negative than the resting membrane potential at the axon trunk, suggesting that GABA may hyperpolarize the axonal membrane potential. Further experiments demonstrated that the activation of axonal GABAA receptors regulated the amplitude and duration of action potentials (APs) and decreased the AP-induced Ca2+ transients at the axon. Together, our results indicate that the waveform of axonal APs and the downstream Ca2+ signals are modulated by axonal GABAA receptors. PMID:24971996

  17. 11-TRIFLUOROMETHYL-PHENYLDIAZIRINYL NEUROSTEROID ANALOGUES: POTENT GENERAL ANESTHETICS AND PHOTOLABELING REAGENTS FOR GABAA RECEPTORS

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Zi-Wei; Wang, Cunde; Krishnan, Kathiresan; Manion, Brad D.; Hastings, Randy; Bracamontes, John; Taylor, Amanda; Eaton, Megan M.; Zorumski, Charles F.; Steinbach, Joseph H.; Akk, Gustav; Mennerick, Steven; Covey, Douglas F.; Evers, Alex S.

    2014-01-01

    Rationale While neurosteroids are well-described positive allosteric modulators of GABAA receptors, the binding sites that mediate these actions have not been definitively identified. Objectives To synthesize neurosteroid analogue photolabeling reagents that closely mimic the biological effects of endogenous neurosteroids and have photochemical properties that will facilitate their use as tools for identifying the binding sites for neurosteroids on GABAA receptors. Results Two neurosteroid analogues containing a trifluromethyl-phenyldiazirine group linked to the steroid C11 position were synthesized. These reagents, CW12 and CW14, are analogues of allopregnanolone (5α-reduced steroid) and pregnanolone (5β-reduced steroid), respectively. Both reagents were shown to have favorable photochemical properties with efficient insertion into the C–H bonds of cyclohexane. They also effectively replicated the actions of allopregnanolone and pregnanolone on GABAA receptor functions: they potentiated GABA-induced currents in Xenopus laevis oocytes transfected with α1β2γ2L subunits, modulated [35S]t-butylbicyclophosphorothionate binding in rat brain membranes and were effective anesthetics in Xenopus tadpoles. Studies using [3H]CW12 and [3H]CW14 showed that these reagents covalently label GABAA receptors in both rat brain membranes and in TSA cells expressing either α1 and β2 subunits or β3 subunits of the GABAA receptor. Photolabeling of rat brain GABAA receptors was shown to be both concentration-dependent and stereospecific. Conclusions CW12 and CW14 have the appropriate photochemical and pharmacological properties for use as photolabeling reagents to identify specific neurosteroid binding sites on GABAA receptors. PMID:24756762

  18. GABAA receptor drugs and neuronal plasticity in reward and aversion: focus on the ventral tegmental area

    PubMed Central

    Vashchinkina, Elena; Panhelainen, Anne; Aitta-aho, Teemu; Korpi, Esa R.

    2014-01-01

    GABAA receptors are the main fast inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors in the mammalian brain, and targets for many clinically important drugs widely used in the treatment of anxiety disorders, insomnia and in anesthesia. Nonetheless, there are significant risks associated with the long-term use of these drugs particularly related to development of tolerance and addiction. Addictive mechanisms of GABAA receptor drugs are poorly known, but recent findings suggest that those drugs may induce aberrant neuroadaptations in the brain reward circuitry. Recently, benzodiazepines, acting on synaptic GABAA receptors, and modulators of extrasynaptic GABAA receptors (THIP and neurosteroids) have been found to induce plasticity in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine neurons and their main target projections. Furthermore, depending whether synaptic or extrasynaptic GABAA receptor populations are activated, the behavioral outcome of repeated administration seems to correlate with rewarding or aversive behavioral responses, respectively. The VTA dopamine neurons project to forebrain centers such as the nucleus accumbens and medial prefrontal cortex, and receive afferent projections from these brain regions and especially from the extended amygdala and lateral habenula, forming the major part of the reward and aversion circuitry. Both synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA drugs inhibit the VTA GABAergic interneurons, thus activating the VTA DA neurons by disinhibition and this way inducing glutamatergic synaptic plasticity. However, the GABAA drugs failed to alter synaptic spine numbers as studied from Golgi-Cox-stained VTA dendrites. Since the GABAergic drugs are known to depress the brain metabolism and gene expression, their likely way of inducing neuroplasticity in mature neurons is by disinhibiting the principal neurons, which remains to be rigorously tested for a number of clinically important anxiolytics, sedatives and anesthetics in different parts of the circuitry. PMID

  19. Generation of Recombinant Antibodies to Rat GABAA Receptor Subunits by Affinity Selection on Synthetic Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Koduvayur, Sujatha P.; Gussin, Hélène A.; Parthasarathy, Rajni; Hao, Zengping; Kay, Brian K.; Pepperberg, David R.

    2014-01-01

    The abundance and physiological importance of GABAA receptors in the central nervous system make this neurotransmitter receptor an attractive target for localizing diagnostic and therapeutic biomolecules. GABAA receptors are expressed within the retina and mediate synaptic signaling at multiple stages of the visual process. To generate monoclonal affinity reagents that can specifically recognize GABAA receptor subunits, we screened two bacteriophage M13 libraries, which displayed human scFvs, by affinity selection with synthetic peptides predicted to correspond to extracellular regions of the rat α1 and β2 GABAA subunits. We isolated three anti-β2 and one anti-α1 subunit specific scFvs. Fluorescence polarization measurements revealed all four scFvs to have low micromolar affinities with their cognate peptide targets. The scFvs were capable of detecting fully folded GABAA receptors heterologously expressed by Xenopus laevis oocytes, while preserving ligand-gated channel activity. Moreover, A10, the anti-α1 subunit-specific scFv, was capable of detecting native GABAA receptors in the mouse retina, as observed by immunofluorescence staining. In order to improve their apparent affinity via avidity, we dimerized the A10 scFv by fusing it to the Fc portion of the IgG. The resulting scFv-Fc construct had a Kd of ∼26 nM, which corresponds to an approximately 135-fold improvement in binding, and a lower detection limit in dot blots, compared to the monomeric scFv. These results strongly support the use of peptides as targets for generating affinity reagents to membrane proteins and encourage investigation of molecular conjugates that use scFvs as anchoring components to localize reagents of interest at GABAA receptors of retina and other neural tissues, for studies of receptor activation and subunit structure. PMID:24586298

  20. Assessment of Methods for the Intracellular Blockade of GABAA Receptors.

    PubMed

    Atherton, Laura A; Burnell, Erica S; Mellor, Jack R

    2016-01-01

    Selective blockade of inhibitory synaptic transmission onto specific neurons is a useful tool for dissecting the excitatory and inhibitory synaptic components of ongoing network activity. To achieve this, intracellular recording with a patch solution capable of blocking GABAA receptors has advantages over other manipulations, such as pharmacological application of GABAergic antagonists or optogenetic inhibition of populations of interneurones, in that the majority of inhibitory transmission is unaffected and hence the remaining network activity preserved. Here, we assess three previously described methods to block inhibition: intracellular application of the molecules picrotoxin, 4,4'-dinitro-stilbene-2,2'-disulphonic acid (DNDS) and 4,4'-diisothiocyanostilbene-2,2'-disulphonic acid (DIDS). DNDS and picrotoxin were both found to be ineffective at blocking evoked, monosynaptic inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) onto mouse CA1 pyramidal cells. An intracellular solution containing DIDS and caesium fluoride, but lacking nucleotides ATP and GTP, was effective at decreasing the amplitude of IPSCs. However, this effect was found to be independent of DIDS, and the absence of intracellular nucleotides, and was instead due to the presence of fluoride ions in this intracellular solution, which also blocked spontaneously occurring IPSCs during hippocampal sharp waves. Critically, intracellular fluoride ions also caused a decrease in both spontaneous and evoked excitatory synaptic currents and precluded the inclusion of nucleotides in the intracellular solution. Therefore, of the methods tested, only fluoride ions were effective for intracellular blockade of IPSCs but this approach has additional cellular effects reducing its selectivity and utility. PMID:27501143

  1. Molecular Mechanisms of Antiseizure Drug Activity at GABAA Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Greenfield, L. John

    2013-01-01

    The GABAA receptor (GABAAR) is a major target of antiseizure drugs (ASDs). A variety of agents that act at GABAARs s are used to terminate or prevent seizures. Many act at distinct receptor sites determined by the subunit composition of the holoreceptor. For the benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and loreclezole, actions at the GABAAR are the primary or only known mechanism of antiseizure action. For topiramate, felbamate, retigabine, losigamone and stiripentol, GABAAR modulation is one of several possible antiseizure mechanisms. Allopregnanolone, a progesterone metabolite that enhances GABAAR function, led to the development of ganaxolone. Other agents modulate GABAergic “tone” by regulating the synthesis, transport or breakdown of GABA. GABAAR efficacy is also affected by the transmembrane chloride gradient, which changes during development and in chronic epilepsy. This may provide an additional target for “GABAergic” ASDs. GABAAR subunit changes occur both acutely during status epilepticus and in chronic epilepsy, which alter both intrinsic GABAAR function and the response to GABAAR-acting ASDs. Manipulation of subunit expression patterns or novel ASDs targeting the altered receptors may provide a novel approach for seizure prevention. PMID:23683707

  2. Quantitation of GABAA receptor inhibition required for quinolone-induced convulsions in mice.

    PubMed

    Tsutomi, Y; Matsubayashi, K; Akahane, K

    1994-11-01

    We quantified the amount of inhibition of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptor binding required for the onset of convulsions induced by ciprofloxacin in combination with biphenylacetic acid (BPAA) in mice. In fasting mice iv ciprofloxacin given 30 min after oral BPAA (50 mg/kg) induced convulsions at doses of 40 mg/kg or above. In contrast, ofloxacin caused no convulsions even at 100 mg/kg, the highest dose tested. When mice received 40 mg/kg of ciprofloxacin or ofloxacin, maximal brain concentrations of each quinolone at 30 min were 0.37 or 1.97 micrograms/g, respectively. These brain concentrations of ciprofloxacin and ofloxacin were not affected by combination with BPAA. In the presence of ciprofloxacin and BPAA (at brain tissue concentrations which induced convulsions), the binding of 3H-muscimol to GABAA receptor sites was inhibited by approximately 30%. Using results from a similar binding study, an impracticable iv dose of ofloxacin (500 mg/kg) was estimated to be required to inhibit GABAA receptor binding by 30%, and therefore to induce similar convulsions to those seen with ciprofloxacin at a dose of 40 mg/kg. These results may indicate that epileptic convulsions occur when ciprofloxacin and BPAA interact with each other to antagonize at least 30% of GABAA receptor binding in mice, and provide evidence for a significant role of GABAA receptor inhibition in the occurrence of quinolone-induced convulsions. PMID:7706169

  3. Plasticity of GABAA Receptors during Pregnancy and Postpartum Period: From Gene to Function

    PubMed Central

    Licheri, Valentina; Talani, Giuseppe; Gorule, Ashish A.; Mostallino, Maria Cristina; Biggio, Giovanni; Sanna, Enrico

    2015-01-01

    Pregnancy needs complex pathways that together play a role in proper growth and protection of the fetus preventing its premature loss. Changes during pregnancy and postpartum period include the manifold machinery of neuroactive steroids that plays a crucial role in neuronal excitability by local modulation of specific inhibitory receptors: the GABAA receptors. Marked fluctuations in both blood and brain concentration of neuroactive steroids strongly contribute to GABAA receptor function and plasticity. In this review, we listed several interesting results regarding the regulation and plasticity of GABAA receptor function during pregnancy and postpartum period in rats. The increase in brain levels of neuroactive steroids during pregnancy and their sudden decrease immediately before delivery are causally related to changes in the expression/function of specific GABAA receptor subunits in the hippocampus. These data suggest that alterations in GABAA receptor expression and function may be related to neurological and psychiatric disorders associated with crucial periods in women. These findings could help to provide potential new treatments for these women's disabling syndromes. PMID:26413323

  4. Involvement of dorsal striatal α1-containing GABAA receptors in methamphetamine-associated rewarding memories.

    PubMed

    Jiao, D-L; Liu, Y; Long, J-D; Du, J; Ju, Y-Y; Zan, G-Y; Liu, J-G; Zhao, M

    2016-04-21

    Rewarding memories induced by addictive drugs may contribute to persistent drug-seeking behaviors, which is an important contributing factor to drug addiction. However, the biological mechanisms underlying drug-associated rewarding memories have not yet been fully understood, especially the new synthetic drugs, such as amphetamine-type stimulants (ATS). In this study, using the rat-conditioned place preference (CPP) model, a classic animal model for the reward-associated effects of addictive drugs, we found that the expression level of GABAA α1 subunits was significantly decreased in the dorsal striatum (Dstr) after conditioned methamphetamine (METH) pairing, and no significant differences were observed in the other four rewarding memory-associated areas (medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), nucleus accumbens (NAc), amygdala (Amy), and dorsal hippocampus (DH)). Intra-Dstr injection of either the GABAA receptor agonist muscimol or the specific α1GABAA receptor-preferring benzodiazepine (BDZ) agonist zolpidem significantly abolished METH CPP formation. Thus, this study extends previous findings by showing that GABAA receptors, particularly the α1-containing GABAA receptors, may be strongly implicated in METH-associated rewarding memories. This work provides us with a new perspective on the goal of treating ATS addiction. PMID:26868969

  5. GABAA Receptor Expression in the Forebrain of Ataxic Rolling Nagoya Mice.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Elsebet Østergaard; Kaja, Simon

    2014-01-01

    The human CACNA1A gene encodes the pore-forming α1 subunit of CaV2.1 (P/Q-type) calcium channels and is the locus for several neurological disorders, including episodic ataxia type 2 (EA2), spinocerebellar ataxia type 6 (SCA6) and Familial Hemiplegic Migraine type 1 (FHM1). Several spontaneous mouse Cacna1a mutant strains exist, among them Rolling Nagoya (tg (rol)), carrying the R1262G point mutation in the mouse Cacna1a gene. tg (rol) mice display a phenotype of severe gait ataxia and motor dysfunction of the hind limbs. At the functional level, the R1262G mutation results in a positive shift of the activation voltage of the CaV2.1 channel and reduced current density. γ-Aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor subunit expression depends critically on neuronal calcium influx, and GABAA receptor dysfunction has previously been described for the cerebellum of tg (rol) and other ataxic Cacna1a mutant mice. Given the expression pattern of CaV2.1, it was hypothesized that calcium dysregulation in tg (rol) might affect GABAA receptor expression in the forebrain. Herein, functional GABAA receptors in the forebrain of tg (rol) mice were quantified and pharmacologically dissociated using [(3)H] radioligand binding. No gross changes to functional GABAA receptors were identified. Future cell type-specific analyses are required to identify possible cortical contributions to the psychomotor phenotype of tg (rol) mice. PMID:25309056

  6. Increased GABA(A) inhibition of the RVLM after hindlimb unloading in rats

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moffitt, Julia A.; Heesch, Cheryl M.; Hasser, Eileen M.

    2002-01-01

    Attenuated baroreflex-mediated increases in renal sympathetic nerve activity (RSNA) in hindlimb unloaded (HU) rats apparently are due to changes within the central nervous system. We hypothesized that GABA(A) receptor-mediated inhibition of the rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM) is increased after hindlimb unloading. Responses to bilateral microinjection of the GABA(A) antagonist (-)-bicuculline methiodide (BIC) into the RVLM were examined before and during caudal ventrolateral medulla (CVLM) inhibition in Inactin-anesthetized control and HU rats. Increases in mean arterial pressure (MAP), heart rate (HR), and RSNA in response to BIC in the RVLM were significantly enhanced in HU rats. Responses to bilateral CVLM blockade were not different. When remaining GABA(A) inhibition in the RVLM was blocked by BIC during CVLM inhibition, the additional increases in MAP and RSNA were significantly greater in HU rats. These data indicate that GABA(A) receptor-mediated inhibition of RVLM neurons is augmented after hindlimb unloading. Effects of input from the CVLM were unaltered. Thus, after cardiovascular deconditioning in rodents, the attenuated increase in sympathetic nerve activity in response to hypotension is associated with greater GABA(A) receptor-mediated inhibition of RVLM neurons originating at least in part from sources other than the CVLM.

  7. Dysfunction of GABAA receptor glycolysis-dependent modulation in human partial epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Laschet, Jacques J.; Kurcewicz, Irène; Minier, Frédéric; Trottier, Suzanne; Khallou-Laschet, Jamila; Louvel, Jacques; Gigout, Sylvain; Turak, Baris; Biraben, Arnaud; Scarabin, Jean-Marie; Devaux, Bertrand; Chauvel, Patrick; Pumain, René

    2007-01-01

    A reduction in GABAergic neurotransmission has been put forward as a pathophysiological mechanism for human epilepsy. However, in slices of human epileptogenic neocortex, GABAergic inhibition can be clearly demonstrated. In this article we present data showing an increase in the functional lability of GABAergic inhibition in epileptogenic tissue compared with nonepileptogenic human tissue. We have previously shown that the glycolytic enzyme GAPDH is the kinase involved in the glycolysis-dependent endogenous phosphorylation of the α1-subunit of GABAA receptor, a mechanism necessary for maintaining GABAA function. In human epileptogenic cortex obtained during curative surgery of patients with partial seizures, we demonstrate an intrinsic deficiency of GABAA receptor endogenous phosphorylation resulting in an increased lability of GABAergic currents in neurons isolated from this tissue when compared with neurons from nonepileptogenic human tissue. This feature was not related to a reduction in the number of GABAA receptor α1-subunits in the epileptogenic tissue as measured by [3H]flunitrazepam photoaffinity labeling. Maintaining the receptor in a phosphorylated state either by favoring the endogenous phosphorylation or by inhibiting a membrane-associated phosphatase is needed to sustain GABAA receptor responses in epileptogenic cortex. The increased functional lability induced by the deficiency in phosphorylation can account for transient GABAergic disinhibition favoring seizure initiation and propagation. These findings imply new therapeutic approaches and suggest a functional link to the regional cerebral glucose hypometabolism observed in patients with partial epilepsy, because the dysfunctional GABAergic mechanism depends on the locally produced glycolytic ATP. PMID:17360668

  8. Tonic GABAA conductance bidirectionally controls interneuron firing pattern and synchronization in the CA3 hippocampal network

    PubMed Central

    Pavlov, Ivan; Savtchenko, Leonid P.; Song, Inseon; Koo, Jaeyeon; Pimashkin, Alexey; Rusakov, Dmitri A.; Semyanov, Alexey

    2014-01-01

    The spiking output of interneurons is key for rhythm generation in the brain. However, what controls interneuronal firing remains incompletely understood. Here we combine dynamic clamp experiments with neural network simulations to understand how tonic GABAA conductance regulates the firing pattern of CA3 interneurons. In baseline conditions, tonic GABAA depolarizes these cells, thus exerting an excitatory action while also reducing the excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) amplitude through shunting. As a result, the emergence of weak tonic GABAA conductance transforms the interneuron firing pattern driven by individual EPSPs into a more regular spiking mode determined by the cell intrinsic properties. The increased regularity of spiking parallels stronger synchronization of the local network. With further increases in tonic GABAA conductance the shunting inhibition starts to dominate over excitatory actions and thus moderates interneuronal firing. The remaining spikes tend to follow the timing of suprathreshold EPSPs and thus become less regular again. The latter parallels a weakening in network synchronization. Thus, our observations suggest that tonic GABAA conductance can bidirectionally control brain rhythms through changes in the excitability of interneurons and in the temporal structure of their firing patterns. PMID:24344272

  9. A network of autism linked genes stabilizes two pools of synaptic GABA(A) receptors.

    PubMed

    Tong, Xia-Jing; Hu, Zhitao; Liu, Yu; Anderson, Dorian; Kaplan, Joshua M

    2015-01-01

    Changing receptor abundance at synapses is an important mechanism for regulating synaptic strength. Synapses contain two pools of receptors, immobilized and diffusing receptors, both of which are confined to post-synaptic elements. Here we show that immobile and diffusing GABA(A) receptors are stabilized by distinct synaptic scaffolds at C. elegans neuromuscular junctions. Immobilized GABA(A) receptors are stabilized by binding to FRM-3/EPB4.1 and LIN-2A/CASK. Diffusing GABA(A) receptors are stabilized by the synaptic adhesion molecules Neurexin and Neuroligin. Inhibitory post-synaptic currents are eliminated in double mutants lacking both scaffolds. Neurexin, Neuroligin, and CASK mutations are all linked to Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Our results suggest that these mutations may directly alter inhibitory transmission, which could contribute to the developmental and cognitive deficits observed in ASD. PMID:26575289

  10. Tonic excitation or inhibition is set by GABAA conductance in hippocampal interneurons

    PubMed Central

    Song, Inseon; Savtchenko, Leonid; Semyanov, Alexey

    2011-01-01

    Inhibition is a physiological process that decreases the probability of a neuron generating an action potential. The two main mechanisms that have been proposed for inhibition are hyperpolarization and shunting. Shunting results from increased membrane conductance, and it reduces the neuron-firing probability. Here we show that ambient GABA, the main inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain, can excite adult hippocampal interneurons. In these cells, the GABAA current reversal potential is depolarizing, making baseline tonic GABAA conductance excitatory. Increasing the tonic conductance enhances shunting-mediated inhibition, which eventually overpowers the excitation. Such a biphasic change in interneuron firing leads to corresponding changes in the GABAA-mediated synaptic signalling. The described phenomenon suggests that the excitatory or inhibitory actions of the current are set not only by the reversal potential, but also by the conductance. PMID:21730957

  11. GABAA-Mediated Inhibition Modulates Stimulus-Specific Adaptation in the Inferior Colliculus

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-González, David; Hernández, Olga; Covey, Ellen; Malmierca, Manuel S.

    2012-01-01

    The ability to detect novel sounds in a complex acoustic context is crucial for survival. Neurons from midbrain through cortical levels adapt to repetitive stimuli, while maintaining responsiveness to rare stimuli, a phenomenon called stimulus-specific adaptation (SSA). The site of origin and mechanism of SSA are currently unknown. We used microiontophoretic application of gabazine to examine the role of GABAA-mediated inhibition in SSA in the inferior colliculus, the midbrain center for auditory processing. We found that gabazine slowed down the process of adaptation to high probability stimuli but did not abolish it, with response magnitude and latency still depending on the probability of the stimulus. Blocking GABAA receptors increased the firing rate to high and low probability stimuli, but did not completely equalize the responses. Together, these findings suggest that GABAA-mediated inhibition acts as a gain control mechanism that enhances SSA by modifying the responsiveness of the neuron. PMID:22479591

  12. A network of autism linked genes stabilizes two pools of synaptic GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Tong, Xia-Jing; Hu, Zhitao; Liu, Yu; Anderson, Dorian; Kaplan, Joshua M

    2015-01-01

    Changing receptor abundance at synapses is an important mechanism for regulating synaptic strength. Synapses contain two pools of receptors, immobilized and diffusing receptors, both of which are confined to post-synaptic elements. Here we show that immobile and diffusing GABAA receptors are stabilized by distinct synaptic scaffolds at C. elegans neuromuscular junctions. Immobilized GABAA receptors are stabilized by binding to FRM-3/EPB4.1 and LIN-2A/CASK. Diffusing GABAA receptors are stabilized by the synaptic adhesion molecules Neurexin and Neuroligin. Inhibitory post-synaptic currents are eliminated in double mutants lacking both scaffolds. Neurexin, Neuroligin, and CASK mutations are all linked to Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Our results suggest that these mutations may directly alter inhibitory transmission, which could contribute to the developmental and cognitive deficits observed in ASD. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09648.001 PMID:26575289

  13. Cloning and characterization of GABAA α subunits and GABAB subunits in Xenopus laevis during development

    PubMed Central

    Kaeser, Gwendolyn E.; Rabe, Brian A.; Saha, Margaret S.

    2011-01-01

    Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in the adult nervous system, acts via two classes of receptors, the ionotropic GABAA and metabotropic GABAB receptors. During the development of the nervous system GABA acts in a depolarizing, excitatory manner and plays an important role in various neural developmental processes including cell proliferation, migration, synapse formation and activity-dependent differentiation. Here we describe the spatial and temporal expression patterns of the GABAA and GABAB receptors during early development of Xenopus laevis. Using in situ hybridization and qRT-PCR, GABAA α2 was detected as a maternal mRNA. All other α-subunits were first detected by tailbud through hatching stages. Expression of the various subunits was seen in the brain, spinal cord, cranial ganglia, olfactory epithelium, pineal, and pituitary gland. Each receptor subunit showed a distinctive, unique expression pattern suggesting these receptors have specific functions and are regulated in a precise spatial and temporal manner. PMID:21384470

  14. GABAA Receptor-Modulating Steroids in Relation to Women's Behavioral Health.

    PubMed

    Bäckström, Torbjörn; Bixo, Marie; Strömberg, Jessica

    2015-11-01

    In certain women, increased negative mood relates to the progesterone metabolite, allopregnanolone (allo), during the luteal phase of ovulatory menstrual cycles, the premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD). In anovulatory cycles, no symptom or sex steroid increase occurs but symptoms return during progesterone/allo treatment. Allo is a potent GABAA receptor-modulating steroid and as such is expected to be calming and anxiolytic. A relation to negative mood is unexpected. However, this paradoxical effect can be induced by all GABAA receptor modulators in low concentrations whereas higher concentrations are calming. The severity of the mood symptoms relate to allo in an inverted U-shaped curve at endogenous luteal-phase serum concentrations. Allo's effects on the GABAA receptor can be antagonized by isoallopregnanolone (ISO), an antagonist to allo. ISO has also been used in a preliminary clinical trial on PMDD ameliorating symptoms with good effect in PMDD patients. PMID:26396092

  15. Grey matter density and GABAA binding potential show a positive linear relationship across cortical regions.

    PubMed

    Duncan, N W; Gravel, P; Wiebking, C; Reader, A J; Northoff, G

    2013-04-01

    Voxel based morphometry (VBM) is a widely used technique for studying the structure of the brain. Direct comparisons between the results obtained using VBM and the underlying histology are limited, however. To circumvent the problems inherent in comparing VBM data in vivo with tissue samples that must generally be obtained post-mortem, we chose to consider GABAA receptors, measured using (18)F-flumazenil PET (18F-FMZ-PET), as non-invasive neural markers to be compared with VBM data. Consistent with previous cortical thickness findings, GABAA receptor binding potential (BPND) was found to correlate positively across regions with grey matter (GM) density. These findings confirm that there is a general positive relationship between MRI-based GM density measures and GABAA receptor BPND on a region-by-region basis (i.e., regions with more GM tend to also have higher BPND). PMID:23380503

  16. Assessment of Methods for the Intracellular Blockade of GABAA Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Atherton, Laura A.; Burnell, Erica S.; Mellor, Jack R.

    2016-01-01

    Selective blockade of inhibitory synaptic transmission onto specific neurons is a useful tool for dissecting the excitatory and inhibitory synaptic components of ongoing network activity. To achieve this, intracellular recording with a patch solution capable of blocking GABAA receptors has advantages over other manipulations, such as pharmacological application of GABAergic antagonists or optogenetic inhibition of populations of interneurones, in that the majority of inhibitory transmission is unaffected and hence the remaining network activity preserved. Here, we assess three previously described methods to block inhibition: intracellular application of the molecules picrotoxin, 4,4’-dinitro-stilbene-2,2’-disulphonic acid (DNDS) and 4,4’-diisothiocyanostilbene-2,2’-disulphonic acid (DIDS). DNDS and picrotoxin were both found to be ineffective at blocking evoked, monosynaptic inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) onto mouse CA1 pyramidal cells. An intracellular solution containing DIDS and caesium fluoride, but lacking nucleotides ATP and GTP, was effective at decreasing the amplitude of IPSCs. However, this effect was found to be independent of DIDS, and the absence of intracellular nucleotides, and was instead due to the presence of fluoride ions in this intracellular solution, which also blocked spontaneously occurring IPSCs during hippocampal sharp waves. Critically, intracellular fluoride ions also caused a decrease in both spontaneous and evoked excitatory synaptic currents and precluded the inclusion of nucleotides in the intracellular solution. Therefore, of the methods tested, only fluoride ions were effective for intracellular blockade of IPSCs but this approach has additional cellular effects reducing its selectivity and utility. PMID:27501143

  17. GABAA agonist reduces visual awareness: a masking-EEG experiment.

    PubMed

    van Loon, Anouk M; Scholte, H Steven; van Gaal, Simon; van der Hoort, Björn J J; Lamme, Victor A F

    2012-04-01

    Consciousness can be manipulated in many ways. Here, we seek to understand whether two such ways, visual masking and pharmacological intervention, share a common pathway in manipulating visual consciousness. We recorded EEG from human participants who performed a backward-masking task in which they had to detect a masked figure form its background (masking strength was varied across trials). In a within-subject design, participants received dextromethorphan (a N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor antagonist), lorazepam (LZP; a GABA(A) receptor agonist), scopolamine (a muscarine receptor antagonist), or placebo. The behavioral results show that detection rate decreased with increasing masking strength and that of all the drugs, only LZP induced a further decrease in detection rate. Figure-related ERP signals showed three neural events of interest: (1) an early posterior occipital and temporal generator (94-121 msec) that was not influenced by any pharmacological manipulation nor by masking, (2) a later bilateral perioccipital generator (156-211 msec) that was reduced by masking as well as LZP (but not by any other drugs), and (3) a late bilateral occipital temporal generator (293-387 msec) that was mainly affected by masking. Crucially, only the intermediate neural event correlated with detection performance. In combination with previous findings, these results suggest that LZP and masking both reduce visual awareness by means of modulating late activity in the visual cortex but leave early activation intact. These findings provide the first evidence for a common mechanism for these two distinct ways of manipulating consciousness. PMID:22264199

  18. Regionally specific alterations in the low-affinity GABAA receptor following perinatal exposure to diazepam.

    PubMed

    Gruen, R J; Elsworth, J D; Roth, R H

    1990-04-23

    Alterations in a low affinity form of the GABAA receptor were examined with [3H]bicuculline methylchloride in the adult rat following perinatal exposure to diazepam. Perinatal exposure resulted in a significant reduction in [3H]bicuculline binding in the cingulate cortex. A significant decrease in the ability of GABA to displace bound [3H]bicuculline was observed only in the hypothalamus. The results suggest that the effects of perinatal exposure to diazepam are regionally specific and that benzodiazepine receptors and low affinity GABAA receptors are functionally linked during the perinatal period. PMID:2162709

  19. Statistical Mechanics Model for the Interaction between the Neurotransmitter γ-Aminobutyric acid and GABAA Receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zafar, Sufi; Saxena, Nina C.; Conrad, Kevin A.; Hussain, Arif

    2004-07-01

    Interactions between the neurotransmitter γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and GABAA receptor ion channels play an important role in the central nervous system. A statistical mechanics model is proposed for the interaction between GABA and GABAA receptors. The model provides good fits to the electrophysiology data as well as an estimation of receptor activation energies, and predicts the temperature dependence consistent with measurements. In addition, the model provides insights into single channel conductance measurements. This model is also applicable to other ligand-gated ion channels with similar pentameric structures.

  20. Linkage disequilibrium between the beta frequency of the human EEG and a GABAA receptor gene locus

    PubMed Central

    Porjesz, Bernice; Almasy, Laura; Edenberg, Howard J.; Wang, Kongming; Chorlian, David B.; Foroud, Tatiana; Goate, Alison; Rice, John P.; O'Connor, Sean J.; Rohrbaugh, John; Kuperman, Samuel; Bauer, Lance O.; Crowe, Raymond R.; Schuckit, Marc A.; Hesselbrock, Victor; Conneally, P. Michael; Tischfield, Jay A.; Li, Ting-Kai; Reich, Theodore; Begleiter, Henri

    2002-01-01

    Human brain oscillations represent important features of information processing and are highly heritable. A common feature of beta oscillations (13–28 Hz) is the critical involvement of networks of inhibitory interneurons as pacemakers, gated by γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) action. Advances in molecular and statistical genetics permit examination of quantitative traits such as the beta frequency of the human electroencephalogram in conjunction with DNA markers. We report a significant linkage and linkage disequilibrium between beta frequency and a set of GABAA receptor genes. Uncovering the genes influencing brain oscillations provides a better understanding of the neural function involved in information processing. PMID:11891318

  1. Structural Studies of GABAA Receptor Binding Sites: Which Experimental Structure Tells us What?

    PubMed

    Puthenkalam, Roshan; Hieckel, Marcel; Simeone, Xenia; Suwattanasophon, Chonticha; Feldbauer, Roman V; Ecker, Gerhard F; Ernst, Margot

    2016-01-01

    Atomic resolution structures of cys-loop receptors, including one of a γ-aminobutyric acid type A receptor (GABAA receptor) subtype, allow amazing insights into the structural features and conformational changes that these pentameric ligand-gated ion channels (pLGICs) display. Here we present a comprehensive analysis of more than 30 cys-loop receptor structures of homologous proteins that revealed several allosteric binding sites not previously described in GABAA receptors. These novel binding sites were examined in GABAA receptor homology models and assessed as putative candidate sites for allosteric ligands. Four so far undescribed putative ligand binding sites were proposed for follow up studies based on their presence in the GABAA receptor homology models. A comprehensive analysis of conserved structural features in GABAA and glycine receptors (GlyRs), the glutamate gated ion channel, the bacterial homologs Erwinia chrysanthemi (ELIC) and Gloeobacter violaceus GLIC, and the serotonin type 3 (5-HT3) receptor was performed. The conserved features were integrated into a master alignment that led to improved homology models. The large fragment of the intracellular domain that is present in the structure of the 5-HT3 receptor was utilized to generate GABAA receptor models with a corresponding intracellular domain fragment. Results of mutational and photoaffinity ligand studies in GABAA receptors were analyzed in the light of the model structures. This led to an assignment of candidate ligands to two proposed novel pockets, candidate binding sites for furosemide and neurosteroids in the trans-membrane domain were identified. The homology models can serve as hypotheses generators, and some previously controversial structural interpretations of biochemical data can be resolved in the light of the presented multi-template approach to comparative modeling. Crystal and cryo-EM microscopic structures of the closest homologs that were solved in different conformational

  2. Association between GABAA Receptor Subunit Gene Cluster and Zolpidem-Induced Complex Sleep Behaviors in Han Chinese

    PubMed Central

    Tsai, Jui-Hsiu; Yang, Pinchen; Lin, Hung-Hsun; Cheng, Kuang-hung; Yang, Yi-Hsin; Wu, Ming-Tsang; Chen, Cheng-Chung

    2013-01-01

    Study Objectives: To investigate and elucidate the role of GABAA receptor subunits, specifically the 2 genetic markers at the GABAA α1 and GABAA α6 receptors, in zolpidem-induced complex sleep behaviors (CSBs). Design: Genetic association study. Setting: Kaohsiung Medical University-affiliated hospitals, Kaohsiung, Taiwan. Patients: 30 zolpidem-induced CSB subjects and 37 controls. Interventions: N/A. Measurements and Results: The χ2 test demonstrated an association between the A15G variant at the GABAA α1 receptor subunit gene and zolpidem-induced CSBs (P = 0.007). The adjusted odds ratio of the GABAA α1 receptor subunit genotype for the risk of zolpidem-induced CSBs was approximately 10 (OR = 9.99, 95% CI = 1.82, 74.87; P = 0.013). Conclusions: The finding reveals that the A15G variant at the GABAA α1 receptor subunit gene confers a high risk of zolpidem-induced CSBs and may be considered in clinical services. Citation: Tsai JH; Yang P; Lin HH; Cheng Kh; Yang YH; Wu MT; Chen CC. Association between GABAA receptor subunit gene cluster and zolpidem-induced complex sleep behaviors in Han Chinese. SLEEP 2013;36(2):197–202. PMID:23372267

  3. α(5)GABA(A) receptors mediate primary afferent fiber tonic excitability in the turtle spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Loeza-Alcocer, Emanuel; Canto-Bustos, Martha; Aguilar, Justo; González-Ramírez, Ricardo; Felix, Ricardo; Delgado-Lezama, Rodolfo

    2013-11-01

    γ-Amino butyric acid (GABA) plays a key role in the regulation of central nervous system by activating synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA receptors. It is acknowledged that extrasynaptic GABAA receptors located in the soma, dendrites, and axons may be activated tonically by low extracellular GABA concentrations. The activation of these receptors produces a persistent conductance that can hyperpolarize or depolarize nerve cells depending on the Cl(-) equilibrium potential. In an in vitro preparation of the turtle spinal cord we show that extrasynaptic α5GABAA receptors mediate the tonic state of excitability of primary afferents independently of the phasic primary afferent depolarization mediated by synaptic GABAA receptors. Blockade of α5GABAA receptors with the inverse agonist L-655,708 depressed the dorsal root reflex (DRR) without affecting the phasic increase in excitability of primary afferents. Using RT-PCR and Western blotting, we corroborated the presence of the mRNA and the α5GABAA protein in the dorsal root ganglia of the turtle spinal cord. The receptors were localized in primary afferents in dorsal root, dorsal root ganglia, and peripheral nerve terminals using immunoconfocal microscopy. Considering the implications of the DRR in neurogenic inflammation, α5GABAA receptors may serve as potential pharmacological targets for the treatment of pain. PMID:23966669

  4. Sex differences in effects of mild chronic stress on seizure risk and GABAA receptors in rats.

    PubMed

    Chadda, Ritu; Devaud, Leslie L

    2004-07-01

    Social stress is a common occurrence in our society that can negatively impact health. Therefore, we wanted to study the effects of a mild stressor designed to model social stress on seizure susceptibility and GABAA receptors in male and female rats. The mild chronic stress of individual housing consistently decreased bicuculline (but not pentylenetetrazol, PTZ) seizure thresholds by 10-15% in both sexes. Housing conditions did not alter the anticonvulsant activity of diazepam or ethanol, although the anticonvulsant effect of ethanol was significantly greater against PTZ-induced seizures. Experiments testing the addition of an acute restraint stress unmasked sex differences in seizure induction. The acute stress also selectively decreased the potency of GABA to modulate GABAA receptor-mediated chloride uptake in group-housed females. There were additional sex differences by housing condition for GABAA receptor-gated chloride uptake but no differences in [3H]flunitrazepam binding. We also found significant effects of sex and housing on ethanol-induced increases in corticosterone (CORT) levels. In summary, there were complex and sex-selective effects of mild chronic stress on seizure induction and GABAA receptors. Gaining a better understanding of mechanisms underlying interactions between sex and stress has important implications for addressing health concerns about stress in men and women. PMID:15251258

  5. Effect of synthetic steroids on GABAA receptor binding in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Rey, M; Veleiro, A S; Ghini, A A; Kruse, M S; Burton, G; Coirini, H

    2015-04-01

    Neuroactive steroids, like allopregnanolone (A) and pregnanolone (P), bind to specifics sites on the GABAA receptor complex and modulate receptor function. They are capable to inhibit or stimulate the binding of GABAA receptor-specific ligands, like t-butyl-bicyclophosphorothionate, flunitrazepam and muscimol. We have previously characterized a set of oxygen-bridged synthetic steroids (SS) analogs to A or P using synaptosomes. Considering that the subunit composition of the GABAA receptor throughout the central nervous system affects the magnitude of the modulation of the GABAA receptor by NAS, we evaluated the action of two selected SS, in brain sections containing the cerebral cortex (CC) and hippocampus (HC) using quantitative receptor autoradiography. Both SS affected the binding of the three ligands in a similar way to A and P, with some differences on certain CC layers according to the ligand used. One of the SS, the 3α-hydroxy-6,19-epoxypregn-4-ene-20-one (compound 5), behaved similarly to the natural neuroactive steroids. However, significant differences with compound 5 were observed on the HC CA2 region, making it steroid suitable for a specific action. Those differences may be related to structural conformation of the SS and the subunits' composition present on the receptor complex. PMID:25617652

  6. Effects of Pharmacological Block of GABAA Receptors on Pallidal Neurons in Normal and Parkinsonian State

    PubMed Central

    Xue, Yan; Han, Xiao-Hua; Chen, Lei

    2009-01-01

    The globus pallidus plays a central integrative role in the basal ganglia circuitry. Morphological studies have revealed a high level of GABA and GABAA receptors in the globus pallidus. To further investigate the effects of endogenous GABAA neurotransmission in the globus pallidus of normal and parkinsonian rats, in vivo extracellular recording and behavioral tests were performed in the present studies. In normal rats, micro-pressure ejection of GABAA receptor antagonist gabazine (0.1 mM) increased the spontaneous firing rate of pallidal neurons by 28.3%. Furthermore, in 6-hydroxydopamine parkinsonian rats, gabazine increased the firing rate by 46.0% on the lesioned side, which was significantly greater than that on the unlesioned side (21.5%, P < 0.05), as well as that in normal rats (P < 0.05). In the behaving rats, unilateral microinjection of gabazine (0.1 mM) evoked consistent contralateral rotation in normal rats, and significantly potentiated the number of apomorphine-induced contralateral rotations in parkinsonian rats. The present electrophysiological and behavioral findings may provide a rational for further investigations into the potential of pallidal endogenous GABAA neurotransmission in the treatment of Parkinson's disease. PMID:20204138

  7. γ-Hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) is not an agonist of extrasynaptic GABAA receptors.

    PubMed

    Connelly, William M; Errington, Adam C; Crunelli, Vincenzo

    2013-01-01

    γ-Hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) is an endogenous compound and a drug used clinically to treat the symptoms of narcolepsy. GHB is known to be an agonist of GABAB receptors with millimolar affinity, but also binds with much higher affinity to another site, known as the GHB receptor. While a body of evidence has shown that GHB does not bind to GABAA receptors widely, recent evidence has suggested that the GHB receptor is in fact on extrasynaptic α4β1δ GABAA receptors, where GHB acts as an agonist with an EC50 of 140 nM. We investigated three neuronal cell types that express a tonic GABAA receptor current mediated by extrasynaptic receptors: ventrobasal (VB) thalamic neurons, dentate gyrus granule cells and striatal medium spiny neurons. Using whole-cell voltage clamp in brain slices, we found no evidence that GHB (10 µM) induced any GABAA receptor mediated current in these cell types, nor that it modulated inhibitory synaptic currents. Furthermore, a high concentration of GHB (3 mM) was able to produce a GABAB receptor mediated current, but did not induce any other currents. These results suggest either that GHB is not a high affinity agonist at native α4β1δ receptors, or that these receptors do not exist in classical areas associated with extrasynaptic currents. PMID:24244421

  8. γ-Hydroxybutyric Acid (GHB) Is Not an Agonist of Extrasynaptic GABAA Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Connelly, William M.; Errington, Adam C.; Crunelli, Vincenzo

    2013-01-01

    γ-Hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) is an endogenous compound and a drug used clinically to treat the symptoms of narcolepsy. GHB is known to be an agonist of GABAB receptors with millimolar affinity, but also binds with much higher affinity to another site, known as the GHB receptor. While a body of evidence has shown that GHB does not bind to GABAA receptors widely, recent evidence has suggested that the GHB receptor is in fact on extrasynaptic α4β1δ GABAA receptors, where GHB acts as an agonist with an EC50 of 140 nM. We investigated three neuronal cell types that express a tonic GABAA receptor current mediated by extrasynaptic receptors: ventrobasal (VB) thalamic neurons, dentate gyrus granule cells and striatal medium spiny neurons. Using whole-cell voltage clamp in brain slices, we found no evidence that GHB (10 µM) induced any GABAA receptor mediated current in these cell types, nor that it modulated inhibitory synaptic currents. Furthermore, a high concentration of GHB (3 mM) was able to produce a GABAB receptor mediated current, but did not induce any other currents. These results suggest either that GHB is not a high affinity agonist at native α4β1δ receptors, or that these receptors do not exist in classical areas associated with extrasynaptic currents. PMID:24244421

  9. Abuse and Dependence Liability of Benzodiazepine-Type Drugs: GABAA Receptor Modulation and Beyond

    PubMed Central

    Licata, Stephanie C.; Rowlett, James K.

    2008-01-01

    Benzodiazepine-type drugs (benzodiazepines and the newer non-benzodiazepines) are similar to older sedative/hypnotic drugs, such as the barbiturates, in that they act at the GABAA receptor (9, 188). Unfortunately, benzodiazepine-type drugs also retain the liability for abuse and dependence associated with the earlier anxiolytics (133, 208). Action at GABAA receptors likely plays a key role in both the therapeutic as well as abuse-related effects of this important class of drugs. While the extent to which therapeutic efficacy and abuse potential can be dissociated is not yet understood fully, the biochemical processes underlying these behavioral effects are even less understood. A more comprehensive understanding of the etiology of benzodiazepine-type drug-induced abuse and dependence is likely to provide information that can inform drug development strategies to help design anxiolytics and hypnotics that have maximum clinical benefit with reduced abuse potential. Thus, this review will explore issues related to the abuse and dependence potential of benzodiazepine-type drugs and the role that GABAA receptors play in this phenomenon. Further, this review will discuss putative intracellular events that may occur as a result of the interaction between benzodiazepine-type drugs and GABAA receptors, and how those events may ultimately give rise to the abuse-related behaviors associated with these drugs. PMID:18295321

  10. Adolescent-onset GABAA α1 silencing regulates reward-related decision making.

    PubMed

    Butkovich, Laura M; DePoy, Lauren M; Allen, Amanda G; Shapiro, Lauren P; Swanson, Andrew M; Gourley, Shannon L

    2015-08-01

    The GABAA receptor mediates fast, inhibitory signaling, and cortical expression of the α1 subunit increases during postnatal development. Certain pathological stimuli such as stressors or prenatal cocaine exposure can interfere with this process, but causal relationships between GABAA α1 deficiency and complex behavioral outcomes remain unconfirmed. We chronically reduced GABAA α1 expression selectively in the medial prefrontal cortex (prelimbic subregion) of mice using viral-mediated gene silencing of Gabra1. Adolescent-onset Gabra1 knockdown delayed the acquisition of a cocaine-reinforced instrumental response but spared cocaine seeking in extinction and in a cue-induced reinstatement procedure. To determine whether response acquisition deficits could be associated with impairments in action-outcome associative learning and memory, we next assessed behavioral sensitivity to instrumental contingency degradation. In this case, the predictive relationship between familiar actions and their outcomes is violated. Adolescent-onset knockdown, although not adult-onset knockdown, delayed the expression of goal-directed response strategies in this task, resulting instead in inflexible habit-like modes of response. Thus, the maturation of medial prefrontal cortex GABAA α1 systems during adolescence appears necessary for goal-directed reward-related decision making in adulthood. These findings are discussed in the light of evidence that prolonged Gabra1 deficiency may impair synaptic plasticity. PMID:26096050

  11. GABA(A) receptor downregulation in brains of subjects with autism.

    PubMed

    Fatemi, S Hossein; Reutiman, Teri J; Folsom, Timothy D; Thuras, Paul D

    2009-02-01

    Gamma-aminobutyric acid A (GABA(A)) receptors are ligand-gated ion channels responsible for mediation of fast inhibitory action of GABA in the brain. Preliminary reports have demonstrated altered expression of GABA receptors in the brains of subjects with autism suggesting GABA/glutamate system dysregulation. We investigated the expression of four GABA(A) receptor subunits and observed significant reductions in GABRA1, GABRA2, GABRA3, and GABRB3 in parietal cortex (Brodmann's Area 40 (BA40)), while GABRA1 and GABRB3 were significantly altered in cerebellum, and GABRA1 was significantly altered in superior frontal cortex (BA9). The presence of seizure disorder did not have a significant impact on GABA(A) receptor subunit expression in the three brain areas. Our results demonstrate that GABA(A) receptors are reduced in three brain regions that have previously been implicated in the pathogenesis of autism, suggesting widespread GABAergic dysfunction in the brains of subjects with autism. PMID:18821008

  12. Chloride Accumulators NKCC1 and AE2 in Mouse GnRH Neurons: Implications for GABAA Mediated Excitation.

    PubMed

    Taylor-Burds, Carol; Cheng, Paul; Wray, Susan

    2015-01-01

    A developmental "switch" in chloride transporters occurs in most neurons resulting in GABAA mediated hyperpolarization in the adult. However, several neuronal cell subtypes maintain primarily depolarizing responses to GABAA receptor activation. Among this group are gonadotropin-releasing hormone-1 (GnRH) neurons, which control puberty and reproduction. NKCC1 is the primary chloride accumulator in neurons, expressed at high levels early in development and contributes to depolarization after GABAA receptor activation. In contrast, KCC2 is the primary chloride extruder in neurons, expressed at high levels in the adult and contributes to hyperpolarization after GABAA receptor activation. Anion exchangers (AEs) are also potential modulators of responses to GABAA activation since they accumulate chloride and extrude bicarbonate. To evaluate the mechanism(s) underlying GABAA mediated depolarization, GnRH neurons were analyzed for 1) expression of chloride transporters and AEs in embryonic, pre-pubertal, and adult mice 2) responses to GABAA receptor activation in NKCC1-/- mice and 3) function of AEs in these responses. At all ages, GnRH neurons were immunopositive for NKCC1 and AE2 but not KCC2 or AE3. Using explants, calcium imaging and gramicidin perforated patch clamp techniques we found that GnRH neurons from NKCC1-/- mice retained relatively normal responses to the GABAA agonist muscimol. However, acute pharmacological inhibition of NKCC1 with bumetanide eliminated the depolarization/calcium response to muscimol in 40% of GnRH neurons from WT mice. In the remaining GnRH neurons, HCO3- mediated mechanisms accounted for the remaining calcium responses to muscimol. Collectively these data reveal mechanisms responsible for maintaining depolarizing GABAA mediated transmission in GnRH neurons. PMID:26110920

  13. Chloride Accumulators NKCC1 and AE2 in Mouse GnRH Neurons: Implications for GABAA Mediated Excitation

    PubMed Central

    Taylor-Burds, Carol; Cheng, Paul; Wray, Susan

    2015-01-01

    A developmental “switch” in chloride transporters occurs in most neurons resulting in GABAA mediated hyperpolarization in the adult. However, several neuronal cell subtypes maintain primarily depolarizing responses to GABAA receptor activation. Among this group are gonadotropin-releasing hormone-1 (GnRH) neurons, which control puberty and reproduction. NKCC1 is the primary chloride accumulator in neurons, expressed at high levels early in development and contributes to depolarization after GABAA receptor activation. In contrast, KCC2 is the primary chloride extruder in neurons, expressed at high levels in the adult and contributes to hyperpolarization after GABAA receptor activation. Anion exchangers (AEs) are also potential modulators of responses to GABAA activation since they accumulate chloride and extrude bicarbonate. To evaluate the mechanism(s) underlying GABAA mediated depolarization, GnRH neurons were analyzed for 1) expression of chloride transporters and AEs in embryonic, pre-pubertal, and adult mice 2) responses to GABAA receptor activation in NKCC1-/- mice and 3) function of AEs in these responses. At all ages, GnRH neurons were immunopositive for NKCC1 and AE2 but not KCC2 or AE3. Using explants, calcium imaging and gramicidin perforated patch clamp techniques we found that GnRH neurons from NKCC1-/- mice retained relatively normal responses to the GABAA agonist muscimol. However, acute pharmacological inhibition of NKCC1 with bumetanide eliminated the depolarization/calcium response to muscimol in 40% of GnRH neurons from WT mice. In the remaining GnRH neurons, HCO3- mediated mechanisms accounted for the remaining calcium responses to muscimol. Collectively these data reveal mechanisms responsible for maintaining depolarizing GABAA mediated transmission in GnRH neurons. PMID:26110920

  14. Adenosine receptor antagonists alter the stability of human epileptic GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Roseti, Cristina; Martinello, Katiuscia; Fucile, Sergio; Piccari, Vanessa; Mascia, Addolorata; Di Gennaro, Giancarlo; Quarato, Pier Paolo; Manfredi, Mario; Esposito, Vincenzo; Cantore, Gianpaolo; Arcella, Antonella; Simonato, Michele; Fredholm, Bertil B.; Limatola, Cristina; Miledi, Ricardo; Eusebi, Fabrizio

    2008-01-01

    We examined how the endogenous anticonvulsant adenosine might influence γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor stability and which adenosine receptors (ARs) were involved. Upon repetitive activation (GABA 500 μM), GABAA receptors, microtransplanted into Xenopus oocytes from neurosurgically resected epileptic human nervous tissues, exhibited an obvious GABAA-current (IGABA) run-down, which was consistently and significantly reduced by treatment with the nonselective adenosine receptor antagonist CGS15943 (100 nM) or with adenosine deaminase (ADA) (1 units/ml), that inactivates adenosine. It was also found that selective antagonists of A2B (MRS1706, 10 nM) or A3 (MRS1334, 30 nM) receptors reduced IGABA run-down, whereas treatment with the specific A1 receptor antagonist DPCPX (10 nM) was ineffective. The selective A2A receptor antagonist SCH58261 (10 nM) reduced or potentiated IGABA run-down in ≈40% and ≈20% of tested oocytes, respectively. The ADA-resistant, AR agonist 2-chloroadenosine (2-CA) (10 μM) potentiated IGABA run-down but only in ≈20% of tested oocytes. CGS15943 administration again decreased IGABA run-down in patch-clamped neurons from either human or rat neocortex slices. IGABA run-down in pyramidal neurons was equivalent in A1 receptor-deficient and wt neurons but much larger in neurons from A2A receptor-deficient mice, indicating that, in mouse cortex, GABAA-receptor stability is tonically influenced by A2A but not by A1 receptors. IGABA run-down from wt mice was not affected by 2-CA, suggesting maximal ARs activity by endogenous adenosine. Our findings strongly suggest that cortical A2–A3 receptors alter the stability of GABAA receptors, which could offer therapeutic opportunities. PMID:18809912

  15. Blocking GABAA neurotransmission in the interposed nuclei: effects on conditioned and unconditioned eyeblinks

    PubMed Central

    Parker, Krystal L.; Zbarska, Svitlana; Carrel, Andrew J.; Bracha, Vlastislav

    2010-01-01

    The interposed nuclei (IN) of the intermediate cerebellum are critical components of the circuits that control associative learning of eyeblinks and other defensive reflexes in mammals. The IN, which represent the sole output of the intermediate cerebellum, receive massive GABA-ergic input from Purkinje cells of the cerebellar cortex and are thought to contribute to the acquisition and performance of classically conditioned eyeblinks. The specific role of deep cerebellar nuclei and the cerebellar cortex in eyeblink conditioning are not well understood. One group of studies reported that blocking GABAA neurotransmission in the IN altered the time profile of conditioned responses (CRs), suggesting that the main function of the cerebellar cortex is to shape the timing of CRs. Other studies reported that blocking GABAA neurotransmission in the IN abolished CRs, indicating a more fundamental involvement of the cerebellar cortex in CR generation. When examining this controversy, we hypothesized that the behavioral effect of GABAA blockers could be dose-dependent. The IN of classically conditioned rabbits were injected with high and low doses of picrotoxin and gabazine. Both GABAA blockers produced tonic eyelid closure. A high dose of both drugs abolished CRs, whereas a less complete block of GABAA-mediated inputs with substantially smaller drug doses shortened CR latencies. In addition, low doses of picrotoxin facilitated the expression of unconditioned eyeblinks evoked by trigeminal stimulation. These results suggest that the intermediate cerebellum regulates both associative and non-associative components of the eyeblink reflex, and that behavioral effects of blocking Purkinje cell action on IN neurons are related to collective changes in cerebellar signals and in the excitability of extra-cerebellar eyeblink circuits. PMID:19635470

  16. Brain regional distribution of GABA(A) receptors exhibiting atypical GABA agonism: roles of receptor subunits.

    PubMed

    Halonen, Lauri M; Sinkkonen, Saku T; Chandra, Dev; Homanics, Gregg E; Korpi, Esa R

    2009-11-01

    The major inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain, gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), has only partial efficacy at certain subtypes of GABA(A) receptors. To characterize these minor receptor populations in rat and mouse brains, we used autoradiographic imaging of t-butylbicyclophosphoro[(35)S]thionate ([(35)S]TBPS) binding to GABA(A) receptors in brain sections and compared the displacing capacities of 10mM GABA and 1mM 4,5,6,7-tetrahydroisoxazolo[5,4-c]pyridin-3-ol (THIP), a competitive GABA-site agonist. Brains from GABA(A) receptor alpha1, alpha4, delta, and alpha4+delta subunit knockout (KO) mouse lines were used to understand the contribution of these particular receptor subunits to "GABA-insensitive" (GIS) [(35)S]TBPS binding. THIP displaced more [(35)S]TBPS binding than GABA in several brain regions, indicating that THIP also inhibited GIS-binding. In these regions, GABA prevented the effect of THIP on GIS-binding. GIS-binding was increased in the cerebellar granule cell layer of delta KO and alpha4+delta KO mice, being only slightly diminished in that of alpha1 KO mice. In the thalamus and some other forebrain regions of wild-type mice, a significant amount of GIS-binding was detected. This GIS-binding was higher in alpha4 KO mice. However, it was fully abolished in alpha1 KO mice, indicating that the alpha1 subunit was obligatory for the GIS-binding in the forebrain. Our results suggest that native GABA(A) receptors in brain sections showing reduced displacing capacity of [(35)S]TBPS binding by GABA (partial agonism) minimally require the assembly of alpha1 and beta subunits in the forebrain and of alpha6 and beta subunits in the cerebellar granule cell layer. These receptors may function as extrasynaptic GABA(A) receptors. PMID:19397945

  17. Brain regional distribution of GABAA receptors exhibiting atypical GABA agonism: roles of receptor subunits

    PubMed Central

    Halonen, Lauri M.; Sinkkonen, Saku T.; Chandra, Dev; Homanics, Gregg E.; Korpi, Esa R.

    2009-01-01

    The major inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain, γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), has only partial efficacy at certain subtypes of GABAA receptors. To characterize these minor receptor populations in rat and mouse brains, we used autoradiographic imaging of t-butylbicyclophosphoro[35S]thionate ([35S]TBPS) binding to GABAA receptors in brain sections and compared the displacing capacities of 10 mM GABA and 1 mM 4,5,6,7-tetrahydroisoxazolo[5,4-c]pyridin-3-ol (THIP), a competitive GABA-site agonist. Brains from GABAA receptor α1, α4, δ, and α4 + δ subunit knockout (KO) mouse lines were used to understand the contribution of these particular receptor subunits to “GABA-insensitive” (GIS) [35S]TBPS binding. THIP displaced more [35S]TBPS binding than GABA in several brain regions, indicating that THIP also inhibited GIS-binding. In these regions, GABA prevented the effect of THIP on GIS-binding. GIS-binding was increased in the cerebellar granule cell layer of δ KO and α4 + δ KO mice, being only slightly diminished in that of α1 KO mice. In the thalamus and some other forebrain regions of wild-type mice, a significant amount of GIS-binding was detected. This GIS-binding was higher in α4 KO mice. However, it was fully abolished in α1 KO mice, indicating that the α1 subunit was obligatory for the GIS-binding in the forebrain. Our results suggest that native GABAA receptors in brain sections showing reduced displacing capacity of [35S]TBPS binding by GABA (partial agonism) minimally require the assembly of α1 and β subunits in the forebrain and of α6 and β subunits in the cerebellar granule cell layer. These receptors may function as extrasynaptic GABAA receptors. PMID:19397945

  18. Modulation of neurosteroid potentiation by protein kinases at synaptic- and extrasynaptic-type GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Adams, Joanna M.; Thomas, Philip; Smart, Trevor G.

    2015-01-01

    GABAA receptors are important for inhibition in the CNS where neurosteroids and protein kinases are potent endogenous modulators. Acting individually, these can either enhance or depress receptor function, dependent upon the type of neurosteroid or kinase and the receptor subunit combination. However, in vivo, these modulators probably act in concert to fine-tune GABAA receptor activity and thus inhibition, although how this is achieved remains unclear. Therefore, we investigated the relationship between these modulators at synaptic-type α1β3γ2L and extrasynaptic-type α4β3δ GABAA receptors using electrophysiology. For α1β3γ2L, potentiation of GABA responses by tetrahydro-deoxycorticosterone was reduced after inhibiting protein kinase C, and enhanced following its activation, suggesting this kinase regulates neurosteroid modulation. In comparison, neurosteroid potentiation was reduced at α1β3S408A,S409Aγ2L receptors, and unaltered by PKC inhibitors or activators, indicating that phosphorylation of β3 subunits is important for regulating neurosteroid activity. To determine whether extrasynaptic-type GABAA receptors were similarly modulated, α4β3δ and α4β3S408A,S409Aδ receptors were investigated. Neurosteroid potentiation was reduced at both receptors by the kinase inhibitor staurosporine. By contrast, neurosteroid-mediated potentiation at α4S443Aβ3S408A,S409Aδ receptors was unaffected by protein kinase inhibition, strongly suggesting that phosphorylation of α4 and β3 subunits is required for regulating neurosteroid activity at extrasynaptic receptors. Western blot analyses revealed that neurosteroids increased phosphorylation of β3S408,S409 implying that a reciprocal pathway exists for neurosteroids to modulate phosphorylation of GABAA receptors. Overall, these findings provide important insight into the regulation of GABAA receptors in vivo, and into the mechanisms by which GABAergic inhibitory transmission may be simultaneously tuned by

  19. Enhanced GABAergic inhibition in the premammillary nucleus of photorefractory turkey hens via GABAA receptor upregulation.

    PubMed

    Kosonsiriluk, Sunantha; Chaiworakul, Voravasa; Mauro, Laura J; El Halawani, Mohamed E

    2016-05-01

    The premammillary nucleus (PMM) of the turkey mediobasal hypothalamus, where dopamine-melatonin (DA-Mel) neurons are localized, is a site for photoreception and photoperiodic time measurement, which is essential for the initiation of avian reproductive seasonality. In addition, this area could also be responsible for the onset and maintenance of photorefractoriness at the end of the breeding season due to the enhanced inhibitory effect of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA). GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system which interferes with the photosexual response in the turkey, a seasonally breeding bird. Here, we further characterized the GABAA receptor subunits in the PMM DA-Mel neurons related to reproductive seasonality and the onset of photorefractoriness. GABAA receptor subunits and GABA synthesis enzymes in the PMM of photosensitive and photorefractory turkey hens were identified using real-time qRT-PCR. The upregulation of GABAA receptor α1-3, β2-3, γ1-3, ρ1-3, δ, and θ mRNA expression were observed in the PMM of photorefractory birds when compared to those of photosensitive ones while there is no change observed in the GABA synthesis enzymes, glutamate decarboxylase 1 and 2. Those upregulated GABAA receptor subunits were further examined using immunohistochemical staining and they appeared to be co-localized within the PMM DA-Mel neurons. The upregulation of GABAA receptor subunits observed in the PMM of photorefractory birds coincides with a lack of responsiveness to a light stimulus provided during the photosensitive phase. This is supported by the absence of c-fos induction and TH upregulation in the PMM and a subsequence inhibition of c-fos and GnRH-I expression in the nucleus commissurae pallii. The augmented GABAA receptor subunits expression may mediate an enhancement of inhibitory GABAergic neurotransmission and the subsequent interference with the photosexual response. This could contribute to the state of

  20. Neurosteroid interactions with synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAa receptors: regulation of subunit plasticity, phasic and tonic inhibition, and neuronal network excitability

    PubMed Central

    Chase Matthew, Carver; Doodipala Samba, Reddy

    2013-01-01

    Rationale Neurosteroids are steroids synthesized within the brain with rapid effects on neuronal excitability. Allopregnanolone, allotetrahydrodeoxycorticosterone, and androstanediol are three widely explored prototype endogenous neurosteroids. They have very different targets and functions compared to conventional steroid hormones. Neuronal GABAa receptors are one of the prime molecular targets of neurosteroids. Objective This review provides a critical appraisal of recent advances in the pharmacology of endogenous neurosteroids that interact with GABAa receptors in the brain. Neurosteroids possess distinct, characteristic effects on the membrane potential and current conductance of the neuron, mainly via potentiation of GABAa receptors at low concentrations and direct activation of receptor chloride channel at higher concentrations. The GABAa receptor mediates two types of inhibition, now characterized as synaptic (phasic) and extrasynaptic (tonic) inhibition. Synaptic release of GABA results in the activation of low-affinity γ2-containing synaptic receptors, while high-affinity δ-containing extrasynaptic receptors are persistently activated by the ambient GABA present in the extracellular fluid. Neurosteroids are potent positive allosteric modulators of synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAa receptors and therefore enhance both phasic and tonic inhibition. Tonic inhibition is specifically more sensitive to neurosteroids. The resulting tonic conductance generates a form of shunting inhibition that controls neuronal network excitability, seizure susceptibility, and behavior. Conclusion The growing understanding of the mechanisms of neurosteroid regulation of the structure and function of the synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAa receptors provide many opportunities to create improved therapies for sleep, anxiety, stress, epilepsy, and other neuropsychiatric conditions. PMID:24071826

  1. The GABAA antagonist DPP-4-PIOL selectively antagonises tonic over phasic GABAergic currents in dentate gyrus granule cells.

    PubMed

    Boddum, Kim; Frølund, Bente; Kristiansen, Uffe

    2014-11-01

    GABAA receptors mediate two different types of inhibitory currents: phasic inhibitory currents when rapid and brief presynaptic GABA release activates postsynaptic GABAA receptors and tonic inhibitory currents generated by low extrasynaptic GABA levels, persistently activating extrasynaptic GABAA receptors. The two inhibitory current types are mediated by different subpopulations of GABAA receptors with diverse pharmacological profiles. Selective antagonism of tonic currents is of special interest as excessive tonic inhibition post-stroke has severe pathological consequences. Here we demonstrate that phasic and tonic GABAA receptor currents can be selectively inhibited by the antagonists SR 95531 and the 4-PIOL derivative, 4-(3,3-diphenylpropyl)-5-(4-piperidyl)-3-isoxazolol hydrobromide (DPP-4-PIOL), respectively. In dentate gyrus granule cells, SR 95531 was found approximately 4 times as potent inhibiting phasic currents compared to tonic currents (IC50 values: 101 vs. 427 nM). Conversely, DPP-4-PIOL was estimated to be more than 20 times as potent inhibiting tonic current compared to phasic current (IC50 values: 0.87 vs. 21.3 nM). Consequently, we were able to impose a pronounced reduction in tonic GABA mediated current (>70 %) by concentrations of DPP-4-PIOL, at which no significant effect on the phasic current was seen. Our findings demonstrate that selective inhibition of GABA mediated tonic current is possible, when targeting a subpopulation of GABAA receptors located extrasynaptically using the antagonist, DPP-4-PIOL. PMID:25103229

  2. γ-Aminobutyric acid type A (GABA(A)) receptor subtype inverse agonists as therapeutic agents in cognition.

    PubMed

    Gabriella, Guerrini; Giovanna, Ciciani

    2010-01-01

    The gabaergic system has been identified as a relevant regulator of cognitive and emotional processing. In fact, the discovery that negative allosteric regulators (or inverse agonists) at GABA(A) (γ-aminobutyric acid) α5 subtype receptors improve learning and memory tasks, has further validated this concept. The localization of these extrasynaptic subtype receptors, mainly in the hippocampus, has suggested that they play a key role in the three stages of memory: acquisition, consolidation, and retrieval. The "α5 inverse agonist" binds to an allosteric site at GABA(A) receptor, provoking a reduction of chlorine current, but to elicit this effect, the necessary condition is the binding of agonist neurotransmitter (γ-amino butyric acid) at its orthosteric site. In this case, the GABA(A) receptor is not a "constitutively active receptor" and, however, the presence of spontaneous opening channels for native GABA(A) receptors is rare. Here, we present various classes of nonselective and α5 selective GABA(A) receptor ligands, and the in vitro and in vivo tests to elucidate their affinity and activity. The study of the GABA(A) α5 inverse agonists is one of the important tools, although not the only one, for the development of clinical strategies for treatment of Alzheimer disease and mild cognitive impairment. PMID:21050918

  3. RDX Binds to the GABAA Receptor–Convulsant Site and Blocks GABAA Receptor–Mediated Currents in the Amygdala: A Mechanism for RDX-Induced Seizures

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Larry R.; Aroniadou-Anderjaska, Vassiliki; Qashu, Felicia; Finne, Huckelberry; Pidoplichko, Volodymyr; Bannon, Desmond I.; Braga, Maria F. M.

    2011-01-01

    Background Hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine (RDX) is a high-energy, trinitrated cyclic compound that has been used worldwide since World War II as an explosive in both military and civilian applications. RDX can be released in the environment by way of waste streams generated during the manufacture, use, and disposal of RDX-containing munitions and can leach into groundwater from unexploded munitions found on training ranges. For > 60 years, it has been known that exposure to high doses of RDX causes generalized seizures, but the mechanism has remained unknown. Objective We investigated the mechanism by which RDX induces seizures. Methods and results By screening the affinity of RDX for a number of neurotransmitter receptors, we found that RDX binds exclusively to the picrotoxin convulsant site of the γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) ionophore. Whole-cell in vitro recordings in the rat basolateral amygdala (BLA) showed that RDX reduces the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous GABAA receptor–mediated inhibitory postsynaptic currents and the amplitude of GABA-evoked postsynaptic currents. In extracellular field recordings from the BLA, RDX induced prolonged, seizure-like neuronal discharges. Conclusions These results suggest that binding to the GABAA receptor convulsant site is the primary mechanism of seizure induction by RDX and that reduction of GABAergic inhibitory transmission in the amygdala is involved in the generation of RDX-induced seizures. Knowledge of the molecular site and the mechanism of RDX action with respect to seizure induction can guide therapeutic strategies, allow more accurate development of safe thresholds for exposures, and help prevent the development of new explosives or other munitions that could pose similar health risks. PMID:21362589

  4. From synapse to behavior: rapid modulation of defined neuronal types with engineered GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Wulff, Peer; Goetz, Thomas; Leppä, Elli; Linden, Anni-Maija; Renzi, Massimiliano; Swinny, Jerome D; Vekovischeva, Olga Y; Sieghart, Werner; Somogyi, Peter; Korpi, Esa R; Farrant, Mark; Wisden, William

    2007-01-01

    In mammals, identifying the contribution of specific neurons or networks to behavior is a key challenge. Here we describe an approach that facilitates this process by enabling the rapid modulation of synaptic inhibition in defined cell populations. Binding of zolpidem, a systemically active allosteric modulator that enhances the function of the GABAA receptor, requires a phenylalanine residue (Phe77) in the γ2 subunit. Mice in which this residue is changed to isoleucine are insensitive to zolpidem. By Cre recombinase-induced swapping of the γ2 subunit (that is, exchanging Ile77 for Phe77), zolpidem sensitivity can be restored to GABAA receptors in chosen cell types. We demonstrate the power of this method in the cerebellum, where zolpidem rapidly induces significant motor deficits when Purkinje cells are made uniquely sensitive to its action. This combined molecular and pharmacological technique has demonstrable advantages over targeted cell ablation and will be invaluable for investigating many neuronal circuits. PMID:17572671

  5. From synapse to behavior: rapid modulation of defined neuronal types with engineered GABAA receptors.

    PubMed

    Wulff, Peer; Goetz, Thomas; Leppä, Elli; Linden, Anni-Maija; Renzi, Massimiliano; Swinny, Jerome D; Vekovischeva, Olga Y; Sieghart, Werner; Somogyi, Peter; Korpi, Esa R; Farrant, Mark; Wisden, William

    2007-07-01

    In mammals, identifying the contribution of specific neurons or networks to behavior is a key challenge. Here we describe an approach that facilitates this process by enabling the rapid modulation of synaptic inhibition in defined cell populations. Binding of zolpidem, a systemically active allosteric modulator that enhances the function of the GABAA receptor, requires a phenylalanine residue (Phe77) in the gamma2 subunit. Mice in which this residue is changed to isoleucine are insensitive to zolpidem. By Cre recombinase-induced swapping of the gamma2 subunit (that is, exchanging Ile77 for Phe77), zolpidem sensitivity can be restored to GABAA receptors in chosen cell types. We demonstrate the power of this method in the cerebellum, where zolpidem rapidly induces significant motor deficits when Purkinje cells are made uniquely sensitive to its action. This combined molecular and pharmacological technique has demonstrable advantages over targeted cell ablation and will be invaluable for investigating many neuronal circuits. PMID:17572671

  6. Differential effects of GABAA receptor antagonists in the control of respiratory neuronal discharge patterns.

    PubMed

    Dogas, Z; Krolo, M; Stuth, E A; Tonkovic-Capin, M; Hopp, F A; McCrimmon, D R; Zuperku, E J

    1998-11-01

    To ascertain the role of the inhibitory neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in shaping and controlling the phasic discharge patterns of medullary respiratory premotor neurons, localized pressure applications of the competitive GABAA receptor antagonist bicuculline (BIC) and the noncompetitive GABAA receptor antagonist picrotoxin (PIC) were studied. Multibarrel micropipettes were used in halothane anesthetized, paralyzed, ventilated, vagotomized dogs to record single unit activity from inspiratory and expiratory neurons in the caudal ventral respiratory group and to picoeject GABAA receptor antagonists. The moving time average of phrenic nerve activity was used to determine respiratory phase durations and to synchronize cycle-triggered histograms of discharge patterns. Picoejection of BIC and PIC had qualitatively different effects on the discharge patterns of respiratory neurons. BIC caused an increase in the discharge rate during the neuron's active phase without inducing activity during the neuron's normally silent phase. The resulting discharge patterns were amplified replicas (x2-3) of the underlying preejection phasic patterns. In contrast, picoejection of PIC did not increase the peak discharge rate during the neuron's active phase but induced a tonic level of activity during the neuron's normally silent phase. The maximum effective BIC dose (15 +/- 1.8 pmol/min) was considerably smaller than that for PIC (280 +/- 53 pmol/min). These findings suggest that GABAA receptors with differential pharmacology mediate distinct functions within the same neuron, 1) gain modulation that is BIC sensitive but PIC insensitive and 2) silent-phase inhibition blocked by PIC. These studies also suggest that the choice of an antagonist is an important consideration in the determination of GABA receptor function within the respiratory motor control system. PMID:9819249

  7. BDNF modulates GABAA receptors microtransplanted from the human epileptic brain to Xenopus oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Palma, E.; Torchia, G.; Limatola, C.; Trettel, F.; Arcella, A.; Cantore, G.; Di Gennaro, G.; Manfredi, M.; Esposito, V.; Quarato, P. P.; Miledi, R.; Eusebi, F.

    2005-01-01

    Cell membranes isolated from brain tissues, obtained surgically from six patients afflicted with drug-resistant temporal lobe epilepsy and from one nonepileptic patient afflicted with a cerebral oligodendroglioma, were injected into frog oocytes. By using this approach, the oocytes acquire human GABAA receptors, and we have shown previously that the “epileptic receptors” (receptors transplanted from epileptic brains) display a marked run-down during repetitive applications of GABA. It was found that exposure to the neurotrophin BDNF increased the amplitude of the “GABA currents” (currents elicited by GABA) generated by the epileptic receptors and decreased their run-down; both events being blocked by K252A, a neurotrophin tyrosine kinase receptor B inhibitor. These effects of BDNF were not mimicked by nerve growth factor. In contrast, the GABAA receptors transplanted from the nonepileptic human hippocampal uncus (obtained during surgical resection as part of the nontumoral tissue from the oligodendroglioma margins) or receptors expressed by injecting rat recombinant α1β2γ2 GABAA receptor subunit cDNAs generated GABA currents whose time-course and run-down were not altered by BDNF. Loading the oocytes with the Ca2+ chelator 1,2-bis(2-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N′,N′-tetraacetate-acetoxymethyl ester (BAPTA-AM), or treating them with Rp-8-Br-cAMP, an inhibitor of the cAMP-dependent PKA, did not alter the GABA currents. However, staurosporine (a broad spectrum PK inhibitor), bisindolylmaleimide I (a PKC inhibitor), and U73122 (a phospholipase C inhibitor) blocked the BDNF-induced effects on the epileptic GABA currents. Our results indicate that BDNF potentiates the epileptic GABAA currents and antagonizes their use-dependent run-down, thus strengthening GABAergic inhibition, probably by means of activation of tyrosine kinase receptor B receptors and of both PLC and PKC. PMID:15665077

  8. Hypothalamic oxytocin attenuates CRF expression via GABA(A) receptors in rats.

    PubMed

    Bülbül, Mehmet; Babygirija, Reji; Cerjak, Diana; Yoshimoto, Sazu; Ludwig, Kirk; Takahashi, Toku

    2011-04-28

    Centrally released oxytocin (OXT) has anxiolytic and anti-stress effects. Delayed gastric emptying (GE) induced by acute restraint stress (ARS) for 90 min is completely restored following 5 consecutive days of chronic homotypic restraint stress (CHS), via up-regulating hypothalamic OXT expression in rats. However, the mechanism behind the restoration of delayed GE following CHS remains unclear. Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-projecting neurons in the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) have been shown to inhibit corticotropin releasing factor (CRF) synthesis via GABA(A) receptors. We hypothesized that GABA(A) receptors are involved in mediating the inhibitory effect of OXT on CRF expression in the PVN, which in turn restores delayed GE following CHS. OXT (0.5 μg) and selective GABA(A) receptor antagonist, bicuculline methiodide (BMI) (100 ng), were administered intracerebroventricularly (icv). Solid GE was measured under non-stressed (NS), ARS and CHS conditions. Expression of CRF mRNA in the PVN was evaluated by real time RT-PCR. Neither OXT nor BMI changed GE and CRF mRNA expression under NS conditions. Delayed GE and increased CRF mRNA expression induced by ARS were restored by icv-injection of OXT. The effects of OXT on delayed GE and increased CRF mRNA expression in ARS were abolished by icv-injection of BMI. Following CHS, delayed GE was completely restored in saline (icv)-injected rats, whereas daily injection of BMI (icv) attenuated the restoration of delayed GE. Daily injection of BMI (icv) significantly increased CRF mRNA expression following CHS. It is suggested that central OXT inhibits ARS-induced CRF mRNA expression via GABA(A) receptors in the PVN. GABAergic system is also involved in OXT-mediated adaptation response of delayed GE under CHS conditions. PMID:21382355

  9. Differential Potency of 2,6-Dimethylcyclohexanol Isomers for Positive Modulation of GABAA Receptor Currents.

    PubMed

    Chowdhury, Luvana; Croft, Celine J; Goel, Shikha; Zaman, Naina; Tai, Angela C-S; Walch, Erin M; Smith, Kelly; Page, Alexandra; Shea, Kevin M; Hall, C Dennis; Jishkariani, D; Pillai, Girinath G; Hall, Adam C

    2016-06-01

    GABAA receptors meet all of the pharmacological requirements necessary to be considered important targets for the action of general anesthetic agents in the mammalian brain. In the following patch-clamp study, the relative modulatory effects of 2,6-dimethylcyclohexanol diastereomers were investigated on human GABAA (α1β3γ2s) receptor currents stably expressed in human embryonic kidney cells. Cis,cis-, trans,trans-, and cis,trans-isomers were isolated from commercially available 2,6-dimethylcyclohexanol and were tested for positive modulation of submaximal GABA responses. For example, the addition of 30 μM cis,cis-isomer resulted in an approximately 2- to 3-fold enhancement of the EC20 GABA current. Coapplications of 30 μM 2,6-dimethylcyclohexanol isomers produced a range of positive enhancements of control GABA responses with a rank order for positive modulation: cis,cis > trans,trans ≥ mixture of isomers > > cis,trans-isomer. In molecular modeling studies, the three cyclohexanol isomers bound with the highest binding energies to a pocket within transmembrane helices M1 and M2 of the β3 subunit through hydrogen-bonding interactions with a glutamine at the 224 position and a tyrosine at the 220 position. The energies for binding to and hydrogen-bond lengths within this pocket corresponded with the relative potencies of the agents for positive modulation of GABAA receptor currents (cis,cis > trans,trans > cis,trans-2,6-dimethylcyclohexanol). In conclusion, the stereochemical configuration within the dimethylcyclohexanols is an important molecular feature in conferring positive modulation of GABAA receptor activity and for binding to the receptor, a consideration that needs to be taken into account when designing novel anesthetics with enhanced therapeutic indices. PMID:27029583

  10. Prefrontal GABA(A) receptor alpha-subunit expression in normal postnatal human development and schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Carlotta E; Webster, Maree J; Rothmond, Debora A; Bahn, Sabine; Elashoff, Michael; Shannon Weickert, Cynthia

    2010-07-01

    Cortical GABA deficits that are consistently reported in schizophrenia may reflect an etiology of failed normal postnatal neurotransmitter maturation. Previous studies have found prefrontal cortical GABA(A) receptor alpha subunit alterations in schizophrenia, yet their relationship to normal developmental expression profiles in the human cortex has not been determined. The aim of this study was to quantify GABA(A) receptor alpha-subunit mRNA expression patterns in human dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) during normal postnatal development and in schizophrenia cases compared to controls. Transcript levels of GABA(A) receptor alpha subunits were measured using microarray and qPCR analysis of 60 normal individuals aged 6weeks to 49years and in 37 patients with schizophrenia/schizoaffective disorder and 37 matched controls. We detected robust opposing changes in cortical GABA(A) receptor alpha1 and alpha5 subunits during the first few years of postnatal development, with a 60% decrease in alpha5 mRNA expression and a doubling of alpha1 mRNA expression with increasing age. In our Australian schizophrenia cohort we detected decreased GAD67 mRNA expression (p=0.0012) and decreased alpha5 mRNA expression (p=0.038) in the DLPFC with no significant change of other alpha subunits. Our findings confirm that GABA deficits (reduced GAD67) are a consistent feature of schizophrenia postmortem brain studies. Our study does not confirm alterations in cortical alpha1 or alpha2 mRNA levels in the schizophrenic DLPFC, as seen in previous studies, but instead we report a novel down-regulation of alpha5 subunit mRNA suggesting that post-synaptic alterations of inhibitory receptors are an important feature of schizophrenia but may vary between cohorts. PMID:20100621

  11. Association of nonsense mutation in GABRG2 with abnormal trafficking of GABAA receptors in severe epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Ishii, Atsushi; Kanaumi, Takeshi; Sohda, Miwa; Misumi, Yoshio; Zhang, Bo; Kakinuma, Naoto; Haga, Yoshiko; Watanabe, Kazuyoshi; Takeda, Sen; Okada, Motohiro; Ueno, Shinya; Kaneko, Sunao; Takashima, Sachio; Hirose, Shinichi

    2014-03-01

    Mutations in GABRG2, which encodes the γ2 subunit of GABAA receptors, can cause both genetic epilepsy with febrile seizures plus (GEFS+) and Dravet syndrome. Most GABRG2 truncating mutations associated with Dravet syndrome result in premature termination codons (PTCs) and are stably translated into mutant proteins with potential dominant-negative effects. This study involved search for mutations in candidate genes for Dravet syndrome, namely SCN1A, 2A, 1B, 2B, GABRA1, B2, and G2. A heterozygous nonsense mutation (c.118C>T, p.Q40X) in GABRG2 was identified in dizygotic twin girls with Dravet syndrome and their apparently healthy father. Electrophysiological studies with the reconstituted GABAA receptors in HEK cells showed reduced GABA-induced currents when mutated γ2 DNA was cotransfected with wild-type α1 and β2 subunits. In this case, immunohistochemistry using antibodies to the α1 and γ2 subunits of GABAA receptor showed granular staining in the soma. In addition, microinjection of mutated γ2 subunit cDNA into HEK cells severely inhibited intracellular trafficking of GABAA receptor subunits α1 and β2, and retention of these proteins in the endoplasmic reticulum. The mutated γ2 subunit-expressing neurons also showed impaired axonal transport of the α1 and β2 subunits. Our findings suggested that different phenotypes of epilepsy, e.g., GEFS+ and Dravet syndrome (which share similar abnormalities in causative genes) are likely due to impaired axonal transport associated with the dominant-negative effects of GABRG2. PMID:24480790

  12. Differential effects of diazepam treatment and withdrawal on recombinant GABAA receptor expression and functional coupling.

    PubMed

    Svob Strac, Dubravka; Vlainić, Josipa; Jazvinsćak Jembrek, Maja; Pericić, Danka

    2008-12-30

    Prolonged exposure to benzodiazepines, drugs known to produce tolerance and dependence and also to be abused, leads to adaptive changes in GABA(A) receptors. To further explore the mechanisms responsible for these phenomena, we studied the effects of prolonged diazepam treatment on the recombinant alpha(1)beta(2)gamma(2S) GABA(A) receptors, stably expressed in human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells. The results demonstrating that long-term (48 and 72 h) exposure of cells to a high concentration of diazepam (50 microM) enhanced the maximum number (B(max)) of [(3)H]flunitrazepam, [(3)H]muscimol and [(3)H]t-butylbicycloorthobenzoate ([(3)H]TBOB) binding sites, without changing their affinity (K(d)), suggested the up-regulation of GABA(A) receptors. As demonstrated by cell counting and WST-1 proliferation assay, the observed increase in receptor expression was not a consequence of stimulated growth of cells exposed to diazepam. Semi-quantitative RT-PCR and Western blot analysis, showing elevated levels of alpha(1) subunit mRNA as well as beta(2) and gamma(2) subunit proteins, respectively, suggested that prolonged high dose diazepam treatment induced de novo receptor synthesis by acting at both transcriptional and translational levels. The finding that the number of GABA(A) receptor binding sites returned to control value 24 h following diazepam withdrawal, makes this process less likely to account for the development of benzodiazepine tolerance and dependence. On the other hand, the results demonstrating that observed functional uncoupling between GABA and benzodiazepine binding sites persisted after the termination of diazepam treatment supported the hypothesis of its possible role in these phenomena. PMID:18955034

  13. Removal of GABAA Receptor γ2 Subunits from Parvalbumin Neurons Causes Wide-Ranging Behavioral Alterations

    PubMed Central

    Leppä, Elli; Linden, Anni-Maija; Vekovischeva, Olga Y.; Swinny, Jerome D.; Rantanen, Ville; Toppila, Esko; Höger, Harald; Sieghart, Werner; Wulff, Peer; Wisden, William; Korpi, Esa R.

    2011-01-01

    We investigated the behavioral significance of fast synaptic inhibition by αβγ2-type GABAA receptors on parvalbumin (Pv) cells. The GABAA receptor γ2 subunit gene was selectively inactivated in Pv-positive neurons by Cre/loxP recombination. The resulting Pv-Δγ2 mice were relatively healthy in the first postnatal weeks; but then as Cre started to be expressed, the mice progressively developed wide-ranging phenotypic alterations including low body weight, motor deficits and tremor, decreased anxiety levels, decreased pain sensitivity and deficient prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle reflex and impaired spatial learning. Nevertheless, the deletion was not lethal, and mice did not show increased mortality even after one year. Autoradiography with t-butylbicyclophosphoro[35S]thionate suggested an increased amount of GABAA receptors with only α and β subunits in central nervous system regions that contained high levels of parvalbumin neurons. Using BAC-transgenesis, we reduced some of the Pv-Δγ2 phenotype by selectively re-expressing the wild-type γ2 subunit back into some Pv cells (reticular thalamic neurons and cerebellar Pv-positive neurons). This produced less severe impairments of motor skills and spatial learning compared with Pv-Δγ2 mice, but all other deficits remained. Our results reveal the widespread significance of fast GABAergic inhibition onto Pv-positive neurons for diverse behavioral modalities, such as motor coordination, sensorimotor integration, emotional behavior and nociception. PMID:21912668

  14. Are extrasynaptic GABAA receptors important targets for sedative/hypnotic drugs?

    PubMed Central

    Houston, Catriona M; McGee, Thomas P; MacKenzie, Georgina; Troyano-Cuturi, Kevin; Rodriguez, Pablo Mateos; Kutsarova, Elena; Diamanti, Efthymia; Hosie, Alastair M; Franks, Nicholas P; Brickley, Stephen G

    2012-01-01

    High-affinity extrasynaptic GABAA receptors are persistently activated by the low ambient GABA levels that are known to be present in the extracellular space. The resulting tonic conductance generates a form of shunting inhibition that is capable of altering cellular and network behaviour. It has been suggested that this tonic inhibition will be enhanced by neurosteroids, anti-epileptics, and sedative/hypnotic drugs. However, we show that the ability of sedative/hypnotic drugs to enhance tonic inhibition in the mouse cerebellum will critically depend upon ambient GABA levels. For example, we show that the intravenous anaesthetic propofol only enhances tonic inhibition when ambient GABA levels are below 100 nM. More surprisingly, the actions of the sleep promoting drug THIP (4,5,6,7-tetrahydroisothiazolo-[5,4-c]pyridin-3-ol) are attenuated at ambient GABA levels of just 20 nM. In contrast, our data suggests that neurosteroid enhancement of tonic inhibition will be greater at high ambient GABA concentrations. We present a model that takes into account realistic estimates of ambient GABA levels and predicted extrasynaptic GABAA numbers when considering the ability of sedative/hypnotic drugs to enhance tonic inhibition. These issues will be important when considering drug strategies designed to target extrasynaptic GABAA receptors in the treatment of sleep disorders and other neurological conditions. PMID:22423109

  15. GABAA-receptor modification in taurine transporter knockout mice causes striatal disinhibition

    PubMed Central

    Sergeeva, O A; Fleischer, W; Chepkova, A N; Warskulat, U; Häussinger, D; Siebler, M; Haas, H L

    2007-01-01

    The Striatum is involved in the regulation of movements and motor skills. We have shown previously, that the osmolyte and neuromodulator taurine plays a role in striatal plasticity. We demonstrate now that hereditary taurine deficiency in taurine-transporter knock-out (TAUT KO) mice results in disinhibition of striatal network activity, which can be corrected by taurine supplementation. Modification of GABAA but not glycine receptors (taurine is a ligand for both receptor types) underlies this disinhibition. Whole-cell recordings from acutely isolated as well as cultured striatal neurons revealed a decreased agonist sensitivity of the GABAA receptor in TAUT KO neurons in the absence of changes in the maximal GABA-evoked current amplitude. The striatal GABA level in TAUT KO mice was unchanged. The amplitude enhancement of spontaneous IPSCs by zolpidem was stronger in TAUT KO than in wild-type (WT) animals. Tonic inhibition was absent in striatal neurons under control conditions but was detected after incubation with the GABA-transaminase inhibitor vigabatrin: bicuculline induced a larger shift of baseline current in WT as compared to TAUT KO neurons. Lack of taurine leads to reduced sensitivity of synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA receptors and consequently to disinhibition. These findings help in understanding neuropathologies accompanied by the loss of endogenous taurine, for instance in hepatic encephalopathy. PMID:17962336

  16. CO2-induced ocean acidification increases anxiety in Rockfish via alteration of GABAA receptor functioning

    PubMed Central

    Hamilton, Trevor James; Holcombe, Adam; Tresguerres, Martin

    2014-01-01

    The average surface pH of the ocean is dropping at a rapid rate due to the dissolution of anthropogenic CO2, raising concerns for marine life. Additionally, some coastal areas periodically experience upwelling of CO2-enriched water with reduced pH. Previous research has demonstrated ocean acidification (OA)-induced changes in behavioural and sensory systems including olfaction, which is due to altered function of neural gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptors. Here, we used a camera-based tracking software system to examine whether OA-dependent changes in GABAA receptors affect anxiety in juvenile Californian rockfish (Sebastes diploproa). Anxiety was estimated using behavioural tests that measure light/dark preference (scototaxis) and proximity to an object. After one week in OA conditions projected for the next century in the California shore (1125 ± 100 µatm, pH 7.75), anxiety was significantly increased relative to controls (483 ± 40 µatm CO2, pH 8.1). The GABAA-receptor agonist muscimol, but not the antagonist gabazine, caused a significant increase in anxiety consistent with altered Cl− flux in OA-exposed fish. OA-exposed fish remained more anxious even after 7 days back in control seawater; however, they resumed their normal behaviour by day 12. These results show that OA could severely alter rockfish behaviour; however, this effect is reversible. PMID:24285203

  17. Modulation of GABAA receptor desensitization uncouples sleep onset and maintenance in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Agosto, Jose; Choi, James C; Parisky, Katherine M; Stilwell, Geoffrey; Rosbash, Michael; Griffith, Leslie C

    2009-01-01

    Many lines of evidence indicate that GABA and GABAA receptors make important contributions to human sleep regulation. Pharmacological manipulation of these receptors has differential effects on sleep onset and sleep maintenance insomnia. Here we show that sleep is regulated by GABA in Drosophila and that a mutant GABAA receptor, RdlA302S, specifically decreases sleep latency. The drug carbamazepine (CBZ) has the opposite effect on sleep; it increases sleep latency as well as decreasing sleep. Behavioral and physiological experiments indicated that RdlA302S mutant flies are resistant to the effects of CBZ on sleep latency and that mutant RDLA302S channels are resistant to the effects of CBZ on desensitization, respectively. These results suggest that this biophysical property of the channel, specifically channel desensitization, underlies the regulation of sleep latency in flies. These experiments uncouple the regulation of sleep latency from that of sleep duration and suggest that the kinetics of GABAA receptor signaling dictate sleep latency. PMID:18223647

  18. γ-Aminobutyric Acid Type A (GABAA) Receptor Activation Modulates Tau Phosphorylation*

    PubMed Central

    Nykänen, Niko-Petteri; Kysenius, Kai; Sakha, Prasanna; Tammela, Päivi; Huttunen, Henri J.

    2012-01-01

    Abnormal phosphorylation and aggregation of the microtubule-associated protein Tau are hallmarks of various neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer disease. Molecular mechanisms that regulate Tau phosphorylation are complex and currently incompletely understood. We have developed a novel live cell reporter system based on protein-fragment complementation assay to study dynamic changes in Tau phosphorylation status. In this assay, fusion proteins of Tau and Pin1 (peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans-isomerase 1) carrying complementary fragments of a luciferase protein serve as a sensor of altered protein-protein interaction between Tau and Pin1, a critical regulator of Tau dephosphorylation at several disease-associated proline-directed phosphorylation sites. Using this system, we identified several structurally distinct GABAA receptor modulators as novel regulators of Tau phosphorylation in a chemical library screen. GABAA receptor activation promoted specific phosphorylation of Tau at the AT8 epitope (Ser-199/Ser-202/Thr-205) in cultures of mature cortical neurons. Increased Tau phosphorylation by GABAA receptor activity was associated with reduced Tau binding to protein phosphatase 2A and was dependent on Cdk5 but not GSK3β kinase activity. PMID:22235112

  19. GABAA receptor complex function in frontal cortex membranes from control and neurological patients.

    PubMed

    Lloyd, G K; Lowenthal, A; Javoy-Agid, F; Constantidinis, J

    1991-05-01

    The functional integrity of the GABAA receptor-benzodiazepine (BZ) recognition site-Cl- ionophore complex was assessed by means of [35S]TBPS (t-butylbicyclophosphorothionate) binding to frontal cortex membranes prepared from frozen postmortem brain tissue taken from control (n = 4), Alzheimer (n = 7), Parkinson (n = 3) and Huntington's chorea (n = 2) patients. Specific [35S]TBPS binding was similar in control, Parkinson's disease and Huntington's chorea brains, but was significantly reduced (78% control, P less than 0.01) in frontal cortex membranes from Alzheimer's patients. The linkage between the BZ recognition sites and the GABAA receptor-linked Cl- ionophore was functionally intact in these membranes as BZ site agonists (zolpidem, alpidem, flunitrazepam and clonazepam) enhanced [35S]TBPS binding under the conditions used (well-washed membranes in the presence of 1.0 M NaCl). Zolpidem (BZ1 selective) exhibited a biphasic enhancement in control membranes whereas the other compounds induced a bell-shaped concentration-response curve. The enhancement of [35S]TBPS binding by alpidem, flunitrazepam and clonazepam was greater in frontal cortex membranes from Alzheimer's patients than in controls whereas it tended to be reduced in membranes from the brains of Huntington's chorea patients. These studies demonstrate the functional integrity of the GABAA receptor macromolecular complex and also the usefulness of [35S]TBPS binding in the study of human postmortem tissue. PMID:1654259

  20. GABA-A Receptor Inhibition of Local Calcium Signaling in Spines and Dendrites

    PubMed Central

    Marlin, Joseph J.

    2014-01-01

    Cortical interneurons activate GABA-A receptors to rapidly control electrical and biochemical signaling at pyramidal neurons. Different populations of interneurons are known to uniquely target the soma and dendrites of pyramidal neurons. However, the ability of these interneurons to inhibit Ca2+ signaling at spines and dendrites is largely unexplored. Here we use whole-cell recordings, two-photon microscopy, GABA uncaging and optogenetics to study dendritic inhibition at layer 5 (L5) pyramidal neurons in slices of mouse PFC. We first show that GABA-A receptors strongly inhibit action potential (AP)-evoked Ca2+ signals at both spines and dendrites. We find robust inhibition over tens of milliseconds that spreads along the dendritic branch. However, we observe no difference in the amount of inhibition at neighboring spines and dendrites. We then examine the influence of interneurons expressing parvalbumin (PV), somatostatin (SOM), or 5HT3a receptors. We determine that these populations of interneurons make unique contacts onto the apical and basal dendrites of L5 pyramidal neurons. We also show that SOM and 5HT3a but not PV interneurons potently inhibit AP Ca2+ signals via GABA-A receptors at both spines and dendrites. These findings reveal how multiple interneurons regulate local Ca2+ signaling in pyramidal neurons, with implications for cortical function and disease. PMID:25429132

  1. GABAA receptor subunit gene expression in human prefrontal cortex: comparison of schizophrenics and controls

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Akbarian, S.; Huntsman, M. M.; Kim, J. J.; Tafazzoli, A.; Potkin, S. G.; Bunney, W. E. Jr; Jones, E. G.; Bloom, F. E. (Principal Investigator)

    1995-01-01

    The prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics is hypoactive and displays changes related to inhibitory, GABAergic neurons, and GABAergic synapses. These changes include decreased levels of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD), the enzyme for GABA synthesis, upregulation of muscimol binding, and downregulation of benzodiazepine binding to GABAA receptors. Studies in the visual cortex of nonhuman primates have demonstrated that gene expression for GAD and for several GABAA receptor subunit polypeptides is under control of neuronal activity, raising the possibility that similar mechanisms in the hypoactive prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics may explain the abnormalities in GAD and in GABAA receptor regulation. In the present study, which is the first of its type on human cerebral cortex, levels of mRNAs for six GABAA receptor subunits (alpha 1, alpha 2, alpha 5, beta 1, beta 2, gamma 2) and their laminar expression patterns were analyzed in the prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics and matched controls, using in situ hybridization histochemistry and densitometry. Three types of laminar expression pattern were observed: mRNAs for the alpha 1, beta 2, and gamma 2 subunits, which are the predominant receptor subunits expressed in the mature cortex, were expressed at comparatively high levels by cells of all six cortical layers, but most intensely by cells in lower layer III and layer IV. mRNAs for the alpha 2, alpha 5, and beta 1 subunits were expressed at lower levels; alpha 2 and beta 1 were expressed predominantly by cells in layers II, III, and IV; alpha 5 was expressed predominantly in layers IV, V, and VI. There were no significant changes in overall mRNA levels for any of the receptor subunits in the prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics, and the laminar expression pattern of all six receptor subunit mRNAs did not differ between schizophrenics and controls. Because gene expression for GABAA receptor subunits is not consistently altered in the prefrontal cortex of

  2. Selective antagonism of the GABAA receptor by ciprofloxacin and biphenylacetic acid

    PubMed Central

    Green, M A; Halliwell, R F

    1997-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that ciprofloxacin and biphenylacetic acid (BPAA) synergistically inhibit γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptors. In the present study, we have investigated the actions of these two drugs on other neuronal ligand-gated ion channels. Agonist-evoked depolarizations were recorded from rat vagus and optic nerves in vitro by use of an extracellular recording technique. GABA (50 μM)-evoked responses, in the vagus nerve in vitro, were inhibited by bicuculline (0.3–10 μM) and picrotoxin (0.3–10 μM), with IC50 values and 95% confidence intervals (CI) of 1.2 μM (1.1–1.4) and 3.6 μM (3.0–4.3), respectively, and were potentiated by sodium pentobarbitone (30 μM) and diazepam (1 μM) to (mean±s.e.mean) 168±18% and 117±4% of control, respectively. 5-Hydroxytryptamine (5-HT; 0.5 μM)-evoked responses were inhibited by MDL 72222 (1 μM) to 10±4% of control; DMPP (10 μM)-evoked responses were inhibited by hexamethonium (100 μM) to 12±5% of control, and αbMeATP (30 μM)-evoked responses were inhibited by PPADS (10 μM) to 21±5% of control. Together, these data are consistent with activation of GABAA, 5-HT3, nicotinic ACh and P2X receptors, respectively. Ciprofloxacin (10–3000 μM) inhibited GABAA-mediated responses in the vagus nerve with an IC50 (and 95% CI) of 202 μM (148–275). BPAA (1–1000 μM) had little or no effect on the GABAA-mediated response but concentration-dependently potentiated the effects of ciprofloxacin by up to 33,000 times. Responses mediated by 5-HT3, nicotinic ACh and P2X receptors in the vagus nerve and strychnine-sensitive glycine receptors in the optic nerve were little or unaffected by ciprofloxacin (100 μM), BPAA (100 μM) or the combination of these drugs (both at 100 μM). GABA (1 mM)-evoked responses in the optic nerve were inhibited by bicuculline with an IC50 of 3.6 μM (2.8–4.5), a value not significantly different from that determined in the vagus

  3. MmTX1 and MmTX2 from coral snake venom potently modulate GABAA receptor activity.

    PubMed

    Rosso, Jean-Pierre; Schwarz, Jürgen R; Diaz-Bustamante, Marcelo; Céard, Brigitte; Gutiérrez, José M; Kneussel, Matthias; Pongs, Olaf; Bosmans, Frank; Bougis, Pierre E

    2015-02-24

    GABAA receptors shape synaptic transmission by modulating Cl(-) conductance across the cell membrane. Remarkably, animal toxins that specifically target GABAA receptors have not been identified. Here, we report the discovery of micrurotoxin1 (MmTX1) and MmTX2, two toxins present in Costa Rican coral snake venom that tightly bind to GABAA receptors at subnanomolar concentrations. Studies with recombinant and synthetic toxin variants on hippocampal neurons and cells expressing common receptor compositions suggest that MmTX1 and MmTX2 allosterically increase GABAA receptor susceptibility to agonist, thereby potentiating receptor opening as well as desensitization, possibly by interacting with the α(+)/β(-) interface. Moreover, hippocampal neuron excitability measurements reveal toxin-induced transitory network inhibition, followed by an increase in spontaneous activity. In concert, toxin injections into mouse brain result in reduced basal activity between intense seizures. Altogether, we characterized two animal toxins that enhance GABAA receptor sensitivity to agonist, thereby establishing a previously unidentified class of tools to study this receptor family. PMID:25675485

  4. MmTX1 and MmTX2 from coral snake venom potently modulate GABAA receptor activity

    PubMed Central

    Rosso, Jean-Pierre; Schwarz, Jürgen R.; Diaz-Bustamante, Marcelo; Céard, Brigitte; Gutiérrez, José M.; Kneussel, Matthias; Pongs, Olaf; Bosmans, Frank; Bougis, Pierre E.

    2015-01-01

    GABAA receptors shape synaptic transmission by modulating Cl− conductance across the cell membrane. Remarkably, animal toxins that specifically target GABAA receptors have not been identified. Here, we report the discovery of micrurotoxin1 (MmTX1) and MmTX2, two toxins present in Costa Rican coral snake venom that tightly bind to GABAA receptors at subnanomolar concentrations. Studies with recombinant and synthetic toxin variants on hippocampal neurons and cells expressing common receptor compositions suggest that MmTX1 and MmTX2 allosterically increase GABAA receptor susceptibility to agonist, thereby potentiating receptor opening as well as desensitization, possibly by interacting with the α+/β− interface. Moreover, hippocampal neuron excitability measurements reveal toxin-induced transitory network inhibition, followed by an increase in spontaneous activity. In concert, toxin injections into mouse brain result in reduced basal activity between intense seizures. Altogether, we characterized two animal toxins that enhance GABAA receptor sensitivity to agonist, thereby establishing a previously unidentified class of tools to study this receptor family. PMID:25675485

  5. GABAA and GABAC receptors in adult porcine cones: evidence from a photoreceptor–glia co-culture model

    PubMed Central

    Picaud, Serge; Pattnaik, Bikash; Hicks, David; Forster, Valérie; Fontaine, Valérie; Sahel, José; Dreyfus, Henri

    1998-01-01

    Edge contrast enhancement is an integrated visual function based on the complex centre-surround organization of the cone photoreceptor light response. While centre responses result from direct light activation, surround responses are thought to result from lateral inhibition mediated by horizontal cells. This feedback signal has been attributed to GABAA receptors which have been found in lower vertebrate cones. In order to study the GABA response of adult mammalian photoreceptors, we designed a culture system consisting of isolated photoreceptors seeded on a layer of retinal glial cells. Mature rods and cones required the presence of Müller glial cells to survive and develop neurites; they degenerated in the absence of glial cells. Cone photoreceptors generated large GABA responses whereas rod photoreceptors did not respond to GABA applications. Cone GABA responses consisted of two distinct components, one suppressed by the GABAA receptor blockers bicuculline and SR95531, and the second by the GABAC receptor antagonists TPMPA and imidazole-4-acetic acid (I4AA). Pentobarbital greatly increased the GABAA receptor component whereas it did not affect, or even reduced, the GABAC receptor component. During long GABA applications, GABAA receptor currents desensitized by 78 %, contrasting with the sustained GABAC response. Expression of GABAC receptors in cone photoreceptors was confirmed by anti-ρ-subunit immunolabelling of porcine retinal sections. These results indicate that both GABAA and GABAC receptors may participate in the feedback synapse from horizontal cells to cone photoreceptors in the mammalian retina. PMID:9782157

  6. A Comprehensive Optogenetic Pharmacology Toolkit for In Vivo Control of GABA(A) Receptors and Synaptic Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Lin, Wan-Chen; Tsai, Ming-Chi; Davenport, Christopher M; Smith, Caleb M; Veit, Julia; Wilson, Neil M; Adesnik, Hillel; Kramer, Richard H

    2015-12-01

    Exogenously expressed opsins are valuable tools for optogenetic control of neurons in circuits. A deeper understanding of neural function can be gained by bringing control to endogenous neurotransmitter receptors that mediate synaptic transmission. Here we introduce a comprehensive optogenetic toolkit for controlling GABA(A) receptor-mediated inhibition in the brain. We developed a series of photoswitch ligands and the complementary genetically modified GABA(A) receptor subunits. By conjugating the two components, we generated light-sensitive versions of the entire GABA(A) receptor family. We validated these light-sensitive receptors for applications across a broad range of spatial scales, from subcellular receptor mapping to in vivo photo-control of visual responses in the cerebral cortex. Finally, we generated a knockin mouse in which the "photoswitch-ready" version of a GABA(A) receptor subunit genomically replaces its wild-type counterpart, ensuring normal receptor expression. This optogenetic pharmacology toolkit allows scalable interrogation of endogenous GABA(A) receptor function with high spatial, temporal, and biochemical precision. PMID:26606997

  7. Identification of novel positive allosteric modulators and null modulators at the GABAA receptor α+β− interface

    PubMed Central

    Varagic, Zdravko; Wimmer, Laurin; Schnürch, Michael; Mihovilovic, Marko D; Huang, Shengming; Rallapalli, Sundari; Cook, James M; Mirheydari, Pantea; Ecker, Gerhard F; Sieghart, Werner; Ernst, Margot

    2013-01-01

    Background and Purpose GABAA receptors are the major inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors in the mammalian brain and the target of many clinically important drugs interacting with different binding sites. Recently, we demonstrated that CGS 9895 (2-(4-methoxyphenyl)-2H-pyrazolo[4,3-c]quinolin-3(5H)-one) acts as a null modulator (antagonist) at the high affinity benzodiazepine binding site, but in addition elicits a strong enhancement of GABA-induced currents via a novel drug binding site at the extracellular α+β− interface. Here, we investigated 32 structural analogues of CGS 9895 for their ability to mediate their effects via the α1+β3− interface of GABAA receptors. Experimental Approach GABAA receptors were expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes and investigated by the two-electrode voltage clamp method. Key Results We not only identified compounds with higher efficacy/potency than CGS 9895 for stimulating GABA-induced currents via the α1+β3-binding site, but also discovered compounds acting as null modulators at this site. Most of the compounds also acted as null modulators via the benzodiazepine binding site of GABAA receptors. But some of the positive allosteric modulators or null modulators exclusively exerted their action via the α+β− binding site. Conclusion and Implications Pyrazoloquinolinones and pyrazolopyridinones represent the first prototype of drug candidates mediating benzodiazepine like modulatory effects via the α+β-interface of GABAA receptors. The discovery of null modulators acting as inhibitors of the plus modulators provides a highly useful tool for the discovery of additional classes of compounds that can modulate GABAA receptors via this site, which may lead to novel therapeutic principles. Linked Article This article is accompanied by Varagic et al., pp. 384–399 of this issue. To view this article visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.12153 PMID:23472852

  8. Paradoxical effects of GABA-A modulators may explain sex steroid induced negative mood symptoms in some persons.

    PubMed

    Bäckström, T; Haage, D; Löfgren, M; Johansson, I M; Strömberg, J; Nyberg, S; Andréen, L; Ossewaarde, L; van Wingen, G A; Turkmen, S; Bengtsson, S K

    2011-09-15

    Some women have negative mood symptoms, caused by progestagens in hormonal contraceptives or sequential hormone therapy or by progesterone in the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle, which may be attributed to metabolites acting on the GABA-A receptor. The GABA system is the major inhibitory system in the adult CNS and most positive modulators of the GABA-A receptor (benzodiazepines, barbiturates, alcohol, GABA steroids), induce inhibitory (e.g. anesthetic, sedative, anticonvulsant, anxiolytic) effects. However, some individuals have adverse effects (seizures, increased pain, anxiety, irritability, aggression) upon exposure. Positive GABA-A receptor modulators induce strong paradoxical effects including negative mood in 3%-8% of those exposed, while up to 25% have moderate symptoms. The effect is biphasic: low concentrations induce an adverse anxiogenic effect while higher concentrations decrease this effect and show inhibitory, calming properties. The prevalence of premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) is also 3%-8% among women in fertile ages, and up to 25% have more moderate symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). Patients with PMDD have severe luteal phase-related symptoms and show changes in GABA-A receptor sensitivity and GABA concentrations. Findings suggest that negative mood symptoms in women with PMDD are caused by the paradoxical effect of allopregnanolone mediated via the GABA-A receptor, which may be explained by one or more of three hypotheses regarding the paradoxical effect of GABA steroids on behavior: (1) under certain conditions, such as puberty, the relative fraction of certain GABA-A receptor subtypes may be altered, and at those subtypes the GABA steroids may act as negative modulators in contrast to their usual role as positive modulators; (2) in certain brain areas of vulnerable women the transmembrane Cl(-) gradient may be altered by factors such as estrogens that favor excitability; (3) inhibition of inhibitory neurons may promote

  9. Aripiprazole Increases the PKA Signalling and Expression of the GABAA Receptor and CREB1 in the Nucleus Accumbens of Rats.

    PubMed

    Pan, Bo; Lian, Jiamei; Huang, Xu-Feng; Deng, Chao

    2016-05-01

    The GABAA receptor is implicated in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia and regulated by PKA signalling. Current antipsychotics bind with D2-like receptors, but not the GABAA receptor. The cAMP-responsive element-binding protein 1 (CREB1) is also associated with PKA signalling and may be related to the positive symptoms of schizophrenia. This study investigated the effects of antipsychotics in modulating D2-mediated PKA signalling and its downstream GABAA receptors and CREB1. Rats were treated orally with aripiprazole (0.75 mg/kg, ter in die (t.i.d.)), bifeprunox (0.8 mg/kg, t.i.d.), haloperidol (0.1 mg/kg, t.i.d.) or vehicle for 1 week. The levels of PKA-Cα and p-PKA in the prefrontal cortex (PFC), nucleus accumbens (NAc) and caudate putamen (CPu) were detected by Western blots. The mRNA levels of Gabrb1, Gabrb2, Gabrb3 and Creb1, and their protein expression were measured by qRT-PCR and Western blots, respectively. Aripiprazole elevated the levels of p-PKA and the ratio of p-PKA/PKA in the NAc, but not the PFC and CPu. Correlated with this elevated PKA signalling, aripiprazole elevated the mRNA and protein expression of the GABAA (β-1) receptor and CREB1 in the NAc. While haloperidol elevated the levels of p-PKA and the ratio of p-PKA/PKA in both NAc and CPu, it only tended to increase the expression of the GABAA (β-1) receptor and CREB1 in the NAc, but not the CPu. Bifeprunox had no effects on PKA signalling in these brain regions. These results suggest that aripiprazole has selective effects on upregulating the GABAA (β-1) receptor and CREB1 in the NAc, probably via activating PKA signalling. PMID:26894264

  10. Modulation of diazepam-insensitive GABA(A) receptors by micromolar concentrations of thyroxine and related compounds in vitro.

    PubMed

    Ishibashi, Hitoshi; Witt, Michael-Robin; Nabekura, Junichi; Nielsen, Mogens

    2013-01-15

    The effects of thyroxine and its related compounds on the benzodiazepine-insensitive γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABA(A)) receptors were studied. Thyroxine at micromolar concentrations potentiated the (3)H-Ro15-4513 binding to rat brain membranes in-vitro in the thalamus, striatum, cortex and hippocampus, but not in cerebellum. In the thalamus, the rank order of potency was the following: 3,3',5,5'-tetraiodothyroacetic acid (TETRAC)>L-thyroxine>3,5-diiodo-l-thyronine (3,5-T2). TETRAC induced a slight potentiation of flumazenil binding to diazepam-sensitive GABA(A) receptors in the thalamus and striatum while no effect was found in cortex and hippocampus. Consequently, we examined whether these compounds could exert their modulatory effect on the currents mediated by benzodiazepine-insensitive GABA(A) receptors. The diazepam-insensitive GABA(A) receptor-mediated currents were recorded from acutely isolated rat ventrobasal thalamic neurons by applying low concentrations of 4,5,6,7-tetrahydroisoxazolo[5,4-c]pyridin-3-ol (THIP). TETRAC and thyroxine at low μM concentrations potentiated the THIP-evoked currents, although 3,5-T2 had no effect on the THIP-induced currents. Ethanol had no effect on the enhancing effects of TETRAC. TETRAC itself evoked GABA(A) receptor-mediated currents at high concentrations beyond 30 μM. Although the effects of TETRAC and thyroxine were observed at non-physiological concentrations of hormones, the present results might lead to new lead structures with specificity to diazepam-insensitive GABA(A) receptor subtypes. PMID:23103412

  11. Development of GABAA Receptor Subtype-Selective Imidazobenzodiazepines as Novel Asthma Treatments.

    PubMed

    Forkuo, Gloria S; Guthrie, Margaret L; Yuan, Nina Y; Nieman, Amanda N; Kodali, Revathi; Jahan, Rajwana; Stephen, Michael R; Yocum, Gene T; Treven, Marco; Poe, Michael M; Li, Guanguan; Yu, Olivia B; Hartzler, Benjamin D; Zahn, Nicolas M; Ernst, Margot; Emala, Charles W; Stafford, Douglas C; Cook, James M; Arnold, Leggy A

    2016-06-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated that subtype-selective GABAA receptor modulators are able to relax precontracted human airway smooth muscle ex vivo and reduce airway hyper-responsiveness in mice upon aerosol administration. Our goal in this study was to investigate systemic administration of subtype-selective GABAA receptor modulators to alleviate bronchoconstriction in a mouse model of asthma. Expression of GABAA receptor subunits was identified in mouse lungs, and the effects of α4-subunit-selective GABAAR modulators, XHE-III-74EE and its metabolite XHE-III-74A, were investigated in a murine model of asthma (ovalbumin sensitized and challenged BALB/c mice). We observed that chronic treatment with XHE-III-74EE significantly reduced airway hyper-responsiveness. In addition, acute treatment with XHE-III-74A but not XHE-III-74EE decreased airway eosinophilia. Immune suppressive activity was also shown in activated human T-cells with a reduction in IL-2 expression and intracellular calcium concentrations [Ca(2+)]i in the presence of GABA or XHE-III-74A, whereas XHE-III-74EE showed only partial reduction of [Ca(2+)]i and no inhibition of IL-2 secretion. However, both compounds significantly relaxed precontracted tracheal rings ex vivo. Overall, we conclude that the systemic delivery of a α4-subunit-selective GABAAR modulator shows good potential for a novel asthma therapy; however, the pharmacokinetic properties of this class of drug candidates have to be improved to enable better beneficial systemic pharmacodynamic effects. PMID:27120014

  12. Midazolam inhibits long-term potentiation through modulation of GABAA receptors.

    PubMed

    Evans, M S; Viola-McCabe, K E

    1996-03-01

    Benzodiazepine drugs (BZ) are used for anxiety, insomnia, and seizures. They worsen memory, especially in large doses, but the mechanism of this action is uncertain. In micromolar concentrations, benzodiazepines have been shown to reduce long-term potentiation (LTP), which could be a cellular basis for their amnesic action. We have found that the LTP-inhibiting effects of BZ occur in the nanomolar concentrations attained in humans, and that this effect occurs through modulation of GABAA receptor function. We recorded extracellular synaptic input/output (I/O) curves for population spikes (PS) and EPSPs in rat hippocampal slices before and after induction of LTP. LTP increased maximal PS and EPSPs and shifted I/O curves for PS and EPSPs to the left, reflecting increased synaptic responsiveness after LTP. Curves relating EPSPs to PS were also shifted, so that after LTP larger PS were elicited for the same size EPSP (E-S potentiation). Midazolam (0.5 microM) markedly inhibited the left-shift in PS I/O curves due to E-S potentiation but did not significantly affect other parameters. 8-Phenyltheophylline (10 microM), an adenosine receptor antagonist, did not prevent midazolam inhibition of LTP. Bicuculline, a GABAA receptor antagonist, caused a dose-dependent antagonism of midazolam's LTP inhibition. Our results suggest that benzodiazepines reduce LTP primarily through reduction of E-S potentiation, and that this effect occurs through modulation of GABAA receptor function. This could in part account for the ability of benzodiazepines to disturb new memory formation. PMID:8783210

  13. Systemic availability of guanidinoacetate affects GABAA receptor function and seizure threshold in GAMT deficient mice.

    PubMed

    Schulze, A; Tran, C; Levandovskiy, V; Patel, V; Cortez, M A

    2016-08-01

    Deficiency of guanidinoacetate methyltransferase (GAMT) causes creatine depletion and guanidinoacetate accumulation in brain with the latter deemed to be responsible for the severe seizure disorder seen in affected patients. We studied electrical brain activity and GABAA mediated mechanisms of B6J.Cg-Gamt(tm1Isb) mice. Electrocorticographic (ECoG) monitoring of pharmacological treatments with ornithine (5 % in drinking water for 5-18 days) and/or Picrotoxin (PTX) (a GABAA receptor antagonist) (1.5 mg/kg, I.P.) in Gamt(MUT) and Gamt(WT) groups [n = 3, mean age (SEM) = 6.9 (0.2) weeks]. Mice were fitted with two frontal and two parietal epidural electrodes under ketamine/xylazine anesthesia. Baseline and test recordings were performed for determination of seizure activity over a 2 h period. The ECoG baseline of Gamt(MUT) exhibited an abnormal monotonous cortical rhythm (7-8 Hz) with little variability during awake and sleep states compared to wild type recordings. Ornithine treatment and also PTX administration led to a relative normalization of the Gamt(MUT) ECoG phenotype. Gamt(WT) on PTX exhibited electro-behavioral seizures, whereas the Gamt(MUT) did not have PTX induced seizures at the same PTX dose. Gamt(MUT) treated with both ornithine and PTX did not show electro-behavioral seizures while ornithine elevated the PTX seizure threshold of Gamt(MUT) mice even further. These data demonstrate: (1) that there is expression of electrical seizure activity in this Gamt-deficient transgenic mouse strain, and (2) that the systemic availability of guanidinoacetate affects GABAA receptor function and seizure thresholds. These findings are directly and clinically relevant for patients with a creatine-deficiency syndrome due to genetic defects in GAMT and provide a rational basis for a combined ornithine/picrotoxin therapeutic intervention. PMID:26898547

  14. Studying Cerebellar Circuits by Remote Control of Selected Neuronal Types with GABAA Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Wisden, William; Murray, Andrew J.; McClure, Christina; Wulff, Peer

    2009-01-01

    Although GABAA receptor-mediated inhibition of cerebellar Purkinje cells by molecular layer interneurons (MLIs) has been studied intensely at the cellular level, it has remained unclear how this inhibition regulates cerebellum-dependent behaviour. We have implemented two complementary approaches to investigate the function of the MLI-Purkinje cell synapse on the behavioural level. In the first approach we permanently disrupted inhibitory fast synaptic transmission at the synapse by genetically removing the postsynaptic GABAA receptors from Purkinje cells (PC-Δγ2 mice). We found that chronic disruption of the MLI-Purkinje cell synapse strongly impaired cerebellar learning of the vestibular occular reflex (VOR), presumably by disrupting the temporal patterns of Purkinje cell activity. However, in PC-Δγ2 mice the baseline VOR reflex was only mildly affected; indeed PC-Δγ2 mice show no ataxia or gait abnormalities, suggesting that MLI control of Purkinje cell activity is either not involved in ongoing motor tasks or that the system compensates for its loss. To investigate the latter possibility we developed an alternative genetic technique; we made the MLI-Purkinje cell synapse selectively sensitive to rapid manipulation with the GABAA receptor modulator zolpidem (PC-γ2-swap mice). Minutes after intraperitoneal zolpidem injection, these PC-γ2-swap mice developed severe motor abnormalities, revealing a substantial contribution of the MLI-Purkinje cell synapses to real time motor control. The cell-type selective permanent knockout of synaptic GABAergic input and the fast reversible modulation of GABAergic input at the same synapse illustrate how pursuing both strategies gives a fuller view. PMID:20076763

  15. Role of spinal GABAA receptors in pudendal inhibition of nociceptive and nonnociceptive bladder reflexes in cats.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Zhiying; Reese, Jeremy; Schwen, Zeyad; Shen, Bing; Wang, Jicheng; Roppolo, James R; de Groat, William C; Tai, Changfeng

    2014-04-01

    Picrotoxin, an antagonist for γ-aminobutyric acid receptor subtype A (GABAA), was used to investigate the role of GABAA receptors in nociceptive and nonnociceptive reflex bladder activities and pudendal inhibition of these activities in cats under α-chloralose anesthesia. Acetic acid (AA; 0.25%) was used to irritate the bladder and induce nociceptive bladder overactivity, while saline was used to distend the bladder and induce nonnociceptive bladder activity. To modulate the bladder reflex, pudendal nerve stimulation (PNS) was applied at multiple threshold (T) intensities for inducing anal sphincter twitching. AA irritation significantly (P < 0.01) reduced bladder capacity to 34.3 ± 7.1% of the saline control capacity, while PNS at 2T and 4T significantly (P < 0.01) increased AA bladder capacity to 84.0 ± 7.8 and 93.2 ± 15.0%, respectively, of the saline control. Picrotoxin (0.4 mg it) did not change AA bladder capacity but completely removed PNS inhibition of AA-induced bladder overactivity. Picrotoxin (iv) only increased AA bladder capacity at a high dose (0.3 mg/kg) but significantly (P < 0.05) reduced 2T PNS inhibition at low doses (0.01-0.1 mg/kg). During saline cystometry, PNS significantly (P < 0.01) increased bladder capacity to 147.0 ± 7.6% at 2T and 172.7 ± 8.9% at 4T of control capacity, and picrotoxin (0.4 mg it or 0.03-0.3 mg/kg iv) also significantly (P < 0.05) increased bladder capacity. However, picrotoxin treatment did not alter PNS inhibition during saline infusion. These results indicate that spinal GABAA receptors have different roles in controlling nociceptive and nonnociceptive reflex bladder activities and in PNS inhibition of these activities. PMID:24523385

  16. Assessment of direct gating and allosteric modulatory effects of meprobamate in recombinant GABA(A) receptors.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Manish; Dillon, Glenn H

    2016-03-15

    Meprobamate is a schedule IV anxiolytic and the primary metabolite of the muscle relaxant carisoprodol. Meprobamate modulates GABAA (γ-aminobutyric acid Type A) receptors, and has barbiturate-like activity. To gain insight into its actions, we have conducted a series of studies using recombinant GABAA receptors. In αxβzγ2 GABAA receptors (where x=1-6 and z=1-3), the ability to enhance GABA-mediated current was evident for all α subunit isoforms, with the largest effect observed in α5-expressing receptors. Direct gating was present with all α subunits, although attenuated in α3-expressing receptors. Allosteric and direct effects were comparable in α1β1γ2 and α1β2γ2 receptors, whereas allosteric effects were enhanced in α1β2 compared to α1β2γ2 receptors. In "extrasynaptic" (α1β3δ and α4β3δ) receptors, meprobamate enhanced EC20 and saturating GABA currents, and directly activated these receptors. The barbiturate antagonist bemegride attenuated direct effects of meprobamate. Whereas pentobarbital directly gated homomeric β3 receptors, meprobamate did not, and instead blocked the spontaneously open current present in these receptors. In wild type homomeric ρ1 receptors, pentobarbital and meprobamate were ineffective in direct gating; a mutation known to confer sensitivity to pentobarbital did not confer sensitivity to meprobamate. Our results provide insight into the actions of meprobamate and parent therapeutic agents such as carisoprodol. Whereas in general actions of meprobamate were comparable to those of carisoprodol, differential effects of meprobamate at some receptor subtypes suggest potential advantages of meprobamate may be exploited. A re-assessment of previously synthesized meprobamate-related carbamate molecules for myorelaxant and other therapeutic indications is warranted. PMID:26872987

  17. 5-HT potentiation of the GABAA response in the rat sacral dorsal commissural neurones

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Tian-Le; Pang, Zhi-Ping; Li, Ji-Shuo; Akaike, Norio

    1998-01-01

    The modulatory effect of 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) on the γ-aminobutyric acidA (GABAA) response was investigated in the neurones freshly dissociated from the rat sacral dorsal commissural nucleus (SDCN) using the nystatin perforated patch recording configuration under the voltage-clamp conditions.5-HT potentiated GABA-induced Cl− current (IGABA) without affecting the reversal potential of IGABA and the apparent affinity of GABA to its receptor.α-Methyl-5-HT mimicked the potentiation effect of 5-HT on IGABA while ketanserine blocked it. 1-Oleoyl-2-acetyl-glycerol (OAG) potentiated IGABA, and the effect of 5-HT on IGABA was occluded by OAG pretreatment. In the presence of chelerythrine, 5-HT failed to potentiate IGABA, suggesting that protein kinase C (PKC) is involved in the pathway through which the activation of the 5-HT2 receptor potentiates the IGABA.The facilitatory effect of 5-HT on IGABA remained in the presence of BAPTA-AM. LiCl also had no effect on 5-HT-induced potentiation of IGABA.H-89, genistein, okadaic acid and pervanadate all had no effects on 5-HT potentiation of IGABA. Pertussis toxin treatment for 6–8 h did not block the facilitatory effect of 5-HT on IGABA.The present results show that GABAA receptor in the rat SDCN could be modulated in situ by 5-HT, one of the major transmitters involved in the supraspinal control of nociception, and that the phosphorylation of GABAA receptor by PKC may be sufficient to support such modulation. The results also strongly support the hypothesis that the cotransmission by 5-HT and GABA has an important role in the spinal cord. PMID:9690871

  18. Novel α1 and γ2 GABAA receptor subunit mutations in families with idiopathic generalized epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Lachance-Touchette, Pamela; Brown, Patricia; Meloche, Caroline; Kinirons, Peter; Lapointe, Line; Lacasse, Hélène; Lortie, Anne; Carmant, Lionel; Bedford, Fiona; Bowie, Derek; Cossette, Patrick

    2011-07-01

    Epilepsy is a heterogeneous neurological disease affecting approximately 50 million people worldwide. Genetic factors play an important role in both the onset and severity of the condition, with mutations in several ion-channel genes being implicated, including those encoding the GABA(A) receptor. Here, we evaluated the frequency of additional mutations in the GABA(A) receptor by direct sequencing of the complete open reading frame of the GABRA1 and GABRG2 genes from a cohort of French Canadian families with idiopathic generalized epilepsy (IGE). Using this approach, we have identified three novel mutations that were absent in over 400 control chromosomes. In GABRA1, two mutations were found, with the first being a 25-bp insertion that was associated with intron retention (i.e. K353delins18X) and the second corresponding to a single point mutation that replaced the aspartate 219 residue with an asparagine (i.e. D219N). Electrophysiological analysis revealed that K353delins18X and D219N altered GABA(A) receptor function by reducing the total surface expression of mature protein and/or by curtailing neurotransmitter effectiveness. Both defects would be expected to have a detrimental effect on inhibitory control of neuronal circuits. In contrast, the single point mutation identified in the GABRG2 gene, namely P83S, was indistinguishable from the wildtype subunit in terms of surface expression and functionality. This finding was all the more intriguing as the mutation exhibited a high degree of penetrance in three generations of one French Canadian family. Further experimentation will be required to understand how this mutation contributes to the occurrence of IGE in these individuals. PMID:21714819

  19. Developmental regulation of voltage-gated K+ channel and GABAA receptor expression in Bergmann glial cells.

    PubMed

    Müller, T; Fritschy, J M; Grosche, J; Pratt, G D; Möhler, H; Kettenmann, H

    1994-05-01

    Bergmann glial cells are closely associated with neurons: during development they provide guiding structures for migrating granule cells and in the adult cerebellum they display intimate interactions with Purkinje cells. In this study, we have addressed the question of whether such changes in neuronal-glial interactions during development are accompanied by variations in the membrane properties of Bergmann glial cells. We used a mouse cerebellum slice preparation to study membrane currents of the Bergmann glial cells at various stages of development in situ using the patch-clamp technique. The distinct morphology of Bergmann glial cells was revealed by Lucifer yellow injections during recording. While Bergmann glial cells in mice of postnatal day 20 (P20) to P30 have thick processes with arborized, irregularly shaped leaf-like appendages, the processes of cells from younger mice (P5-P7) are thinner and smoother. This morphological maturation is accompanied by a variation in voltage-gated currents. In cells from P5 to P7, delayed outward- and inward-rectifying K+ currents were recorded, while older Bergmann glial cells were characterized by, large, voltage- and time-independent K+ currents. In addition, application of GABA induces two effects, a rapid activation of a Cl- conductance and a longer-lasting decrease in the (resting) K+ conductance. Both effects were mediated by benzodiazepine-insensitive GABAA receptors. Responses in cells of P5-P7 mice were large as compared to the small or even undetectable responses in P20-P30 cells. These GABAA receptors were characterized immunohistochemically in mice and rat brain sections with five subunit-specific antibodies. Bergmann glial cells exhibit a distinct but transient immunoreactivity for the GABAA receptor alpha 2-, alpha 3-, and delta-subunits. Staining is maximal between P7 and P10 and decreases gradually thereafter. In contrast, antibodies to the alpha 1- and beta 2,3-subunits fail to decorate Bergmann glial cells

  20. Association between GABA(A) receptor subunit polymorphisms and autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

    PubMed

    Sesarini, Carla V; Costa, Lucas; Grañana, Nora; Coto, Miguel Garcia; Pallia, Roberto C; Argibay, Pablo F

    2015-09-30

    ASD might be associated with alterations in excitation/inhibition ratio and GABA(A) has been implicated since it mediates synaptic inhibition. Polymorphisms in GABA receptor (GABAR) were studied: significant differences in allele and genotype frequencies observed between cases and controls (rs1912960, GABRA4). Haplotype analysis: rs1912960 (GABRA4) and rs211037 (GABRG2) overrepresented in cases. Rs1912960 has been associated with ASD and rs211037 with epilepsy. GABRA4 is associated with autism in the Argentinean dataset independently or in combination with GABRG2. PMID:26239769

  1. [The influence of GABAA receptor on the analgesic action of intrathecally injected oxysophoridine].

    PubMed

    Yang, Guang; Gao, Jin-xian; Yi, Zheng-hong; Yan, Lin; Jiang, Yuan-Xu

    2011-05-01

    .This study is to investigate the analgesic effect produced by intrathecal injection (ith) of oxysophoridine (OSR) and the mechanism of GABAA receptor. Warm water tail-flick test was used to detect the analgesic effect of OSR (12.5, 6.25, and 3.13 mg.kg-1 ith) and to observe the influence of GABA (gamma aminobutyric acid) agonist or antagonist on the analgesic effect of OSR in mice. Immunohistochemistry method were used to detect the influence of OSR (12.5 mg.kg-1, ith) on the GABAARalpha1 protein expression in spinal cord. The results obtained covers that OSR (12.5 and 6.25 mg.kg-, ith) alleviates pain significantly with the warm water tail-flick test (P<0.05, P<0.01), the rate of pain threshold increases by 68.45%; GABA and muscimol (MUS) produces analgesic synergism together with the OSR, picrotoxin (PTX) and bicuculline (BIC) antagonize the analgesic effect of OSR; OSR (12.5 mg.kg-1, ith) significantly increase the positive number of GABAARalpha1 nerve cell in spinal cord (P<0.01) and significantly decrease the average grey levels (P<0.01). In conclusion, OSR intrathecal injection has significant analgesic effect. And GABAA receptor in spinal cord is involved in the analgesic mechanism. PMID:21800540

  2. Effects of subunit types of the recombinant GABAA receptor on the response to a neurosteroid.

    PubMed

    Zaman, S H; Shingai, R; Harvey, R J; Darlison, M G; Barnard, E A

    1992-04-10

    When vertebrate brain poly(A)+ RNA is expressed in Xenopus oocytes the response of the GABA receptors formed is found to be inhibited allosterically by a neurosteroid, pregnenolone sulphate (PS). This negative modulation was reproduced after expressing RNAs encoding bovine GABAA receptor subunits in the combinations alpha i + beta 1, or alpha i + beta 1 + gamma 2 (where i = 1, 2 or 3). The characteristics of this inhibition vary significantly with the type of the alpha subunit (alpha 1, alpha 2, or alpha 3) used. When the bovine gamma 2L alternate form of the gamma 2 subunit was replaced by the human gamma 2S subunit, the behaviour was unchanged: the human gamma 2S subunit used is a newly-cloned form, which encodes a polypeptide with two amino acid differences from the human gamma 2 subunit previously described. The results of co-application of PS and 3 alpha-hydroxy-5 alpha-pregnan-ol-20-one, a neurosteroid which is a positive modulator of the GABAA receptor, indicate that these act at different sites on the receptor. PS also increases the desensitisation of the receptor by GABA. This effect, also, is alpha-subunit-type dependent and occurs by an acceleration of the fast phase of desensitisation. PMID:1323476

  3. Alcohol use disorders and current pharmacological therapies: the role of GABA(A) receptors.

    PubMed

    Liang, Jing; Olsen, Richard W

    2014-08-01

    Alcohol use disorders (AUD) are defined as alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence, which create large problems both for society and for the drinkers themselves. To date, no therapeutic can effectively solve these problems. Understanding the underlying mechanisms leading to AUD is critically important for developing effective and safe pharmacological therapies. Benzodiazepines (BZs) are used to reduce the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal syndrome. However, frequent use of BZs causes cross-tolerance, dependence, and cross-addiction to alcohol. The FDA-approved naltrexone and acamprosate have shown mixed results in clinical trials. Naltrexone is effective to treat alcohol dependence (decreased length and frequency of drinking bouts), but its severe side effects, including withdrawal symptoms, are difficult to overcome. Acamprosate showed efficacy for treating alcohol dependence in European trials, but two large US trials have failed to confirm the efficacy. Another FDA-approved medication, disulfiram, does not diminish craving, and it causes a peripheral neuropathy. Kudzu is the only natural medication mentioned by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, but its mechanisms of action are not yet established. It has been recently shown that dihydromyricetin, a flavonoid purified from Hovenia, has unique effects on GABAA receptors and blocks ethanol intoxication and withdrawal in alcoholic animal models. In this article, we review the role of GABAA receptors in the treatment of AUD and currently available and potentially novel pharmacological agents. PMID:25066321

  4. Alcohol use disorders and current pharmacological therapies: the role of GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Jing; Olsen, Richard W

    2014-01-01

    Alcohol use disorders (AUD) are defined as alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence, which create large problems both for society and for the drinkers themselves. To date, no therapeutic can effectively solve these problems. Understanding the underlying mechanisms leading to AUD is critically important for developing effective and safe pharmacological therapies. Benzodiazepines (BZs) are used to reduce the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal syndrome. However, frequent use of BZs causes cross-tolerance, dependence, and cross-addiction to alcohol. The FDA-approved naltrexone and acamprosate have shown mixed results in clinical trials. Naltrexone is effective to treat alcohol dependence (decreased length and frequency of drinking bouts), but its severe side effects, including withdrawal symptoms, are difficult to overcome. Acamprosate showed efficacy for treating alcohol dependence in European trials, but two large US trials have failed to confirm the efficacy. Another FDA-approved medication, disulfiram, does not diminish craving, and it causes a peripheral neuropathy. Kudzu is the only natural medication mentioned by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, but its mechanisms of action are not yet established. It has been recently shown that dihydromyricetin, a flavonoid purified from Hovenia, has unique effects on GABAA receptors and blocks ethanol intoxication and withdrawal in alcoholic animal models. In this article, we review the role of GABAA receptors in the treatment of AUD and currently available and potentially novel pharmacological agents. PMID:25066321

  5. A Review of the Updated Pharmacophore for the Alpha 5 GABA(A) Benzodiazepine Receptor Model

    PubMed Central

    Clayton, Terry; Poe, Michael M.; Rallapalli, Sundari; Biawat, Poonam; Savić, Miroslav M.; Rowlett, James K.; Gallos, George; Emala, Charles W.; Kaczorowski, Catherine C.; Stafford, Douglas C.; Arnold, Leggy A.; Cook, James M.

    2015-01-01

    An updated model of the GABA(A) benzodiazepine receptor pharmacophore of the α5-BzR/GABA(A) subtype has been constructed prompted by the synthesis of subtype selective ligands in light of the recent developments in both ligand synthesis, behavioral studies, and molecular modeling studies of the binding site itself. A number of BzR/GABA(A) α5 subtype selective compounds were synthesized, notably α5-subtype selective inverse agonist PWZ-029 (1) which is active in enhancing cognition in both rodents and primates. In addition, a chiral positive allosteric modulator (PAM), SH-053-2′F-R-CH3 (2), has been shown to reverse the deleterious effects in the MAM-model of schizophrenia as well as alleviate constriction in airway smooth muscle. Presented here is an updated model of the pharmacophore for α5β2γ2 Bz/GABA(A) receptors, including a rendering of PWZ-029 docked within the α5-binding pocket showing specific interactions of the molecule with the receptor. Differences in the included volume as compared to α1β2γ2, α2β2γ2, and α3β2γ2 will be illustrated for clarity. These new models enhance the ability to understand structural characteristics of ligands which act as agonists, antagonists, or inverse agonists at the Bz BS of GABA(A) receptors. PMID:26682068

  6. Lamina-specific alterations in cortical GABA(A) receptor subunit expression in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Beneyto, Monica; Abbott, Andrew; Hashimoto, Takanori; Lewis, David A

    2011-05-01

    Dysfunction of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) in schizophrenia is associated with lamina-specific alterations in particular subpopulations of interneurons. In pyramidal cells, postsynaptic γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA(A)) receptors containing different α subunits are inserted preferentially in distinct subcellular locations targeted by inputs from specific interneuron subpopulations. We used in situ hybridization to quantify the laminar expression of α1, α2, α3, and α5 subunit, and of β1-3 subunit, mRNAs in the DLFPC of schizophrenia, and matched normal comparison subjects. In subjects with schizophrenia, mean GABA(A) α1 mRNA expression was 17% lower in layers 3 and 4, α2 expression was 14% higher in layer 2, α5 expression was 15% lower in layer 4, and α3 expression did not differ relative to comparison subjects. The mRNA expression of β2, which preferentially assembles with α1 subunits, was also 20% lower in layers 3 and 4, whereas β1 and β3 mRNA levels were not altered in schizophrenia. These expression differences were not attributable to medication effects or other potential confounds. These findings suggest that GABA neurotransmission in the DLPFC is altered at the postsynaptic level in a receptor subunit- and layer-specific manner in subjects with schizophrenia and support the hypothesis that GABA neurotransmission in this illness is predominantly impaired in certain cortical microcircuits. PMID:20843900

  7. Tonic GABAA Receptor-Mediated Inhibition in the Rat Dorsal Motor Nucleus of the Vagus

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Hong

    2010-01-01

    Type A γ-aminobutyric acid (GABAA) receptors expressed in the dorsal motor nucleus of vagus (DMV) critically regulate the activity of vagal motor neurons and, by inference, the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Two types of GABAA receptor-mediated inhibition have been identified in the brain, represented by phasic (Iphasic) and tonic (Itonic) inhibitory currents. The hypothesis that Itonic regulates neuron activity was tested in the DMV using whole cell patch-clamp recordings in transverse brain stem slices from rats. An Itonic was present in a subset of DMV neurons, which was determined to be mediated by different receptors than those mediating fast, synaptic currents. Preapplication of tetrodotoxin significantly decreased the resting Itonic amplitude in DMV neurons, suggesting that most of the current was due to action potential (AP)–dependent GABA release. Blocking GABA transport enhanced Itonic and multiple GABA transporters cooperated to regulate Itonic. The Itonic was composed of both a gabazine-insensitive component that was nearly saturated under basal conditions and a gabazine-sensitive component that was activated when extracellular GABA concentration was elevated. Perfusion of THIP (10 μM) significantly increased Itonic amplitude without increasing Iphasic amplitude. The Itonic played a major role in determining the overall excitability of DMV neurons by contributing to resting membrane potential and AP frequency. Our results indicate that Itonic contributes to DMV neuron membrane potential and activity and is thus an important regulator of vagally mediated GI function. PMID:20018836

  8. Insights into structure-activity relationship of GABAA receptor modulating coumarins and furanocoumarins.

    PubMed

    Singhuber, Judith; Baburin, Igor; Ecker, Gerhard F; Kopp, Brigitte; Hering, Steffen

    2011-10-01

    The coumarins imperatorin and osthole are known to exert anticonvulsant activity. We have therefore analyzed the modulation of GABA-induced chloride currents (I(GABA)) by a selection of 18 coumarin derivatives on recombinant α(1)β(2)γ(2S) GABA(A) receptors expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes by means of the two-microelectrode voltage clamp technique. Osthole (EC(50)=14 ± 1 μM) and oxypeucedanin (EC(50)=25 ± 8 μM) displayed the highest efficiency with I(GABA) potentiation of 116 ± 4 % and 547 ± 56 %, respectively. I(GABA) enhancement by osthole and oxypeucedanin was not inhibited by flumazenil (1 μM) indicating an interaction with a binding site distinct from the benzodiazepine binding site. In general, prenyl residues are essential for the positive modulatory activity, while longer side chains or bulkier residues (e.g. geranyl residues) diminish I(GABA) modulation. Generation of a binary classification tree revealed the importance of polarisability, which is sufficient to distinguish actives from inactives. A 4-point pharmacophore model based on oxypeucedanin - comprising three hydrophobic and one aromatic feature - identified 6 out of 7 actives as hits. In summary, (oxy-)prenylated coumarin derivatives from natural origin represent new GABA(A) receptor modulators. PMID:21749864

  9. GABAA Increases Calcium in Subventricular Zone Astrocyte-Like Cells Through L- and T-Type Voltage-Gated Calcium Channels

    PubMed Central

    Young, Stephanie Z.; Platel, Jean-Claude; Nielsen, Jakob V.; Jensen, Niels A.; Bordey, Angélique

    2010-01-01

    In the adult neurogenic subventricular zone (SVZ), the behavior of astrocyte-like cells and some of their functions depend on changes in intracellular Ca2+ levels and tonic GABAA receptor activation. However, it is unknown whether, and if so how, GABAA receptor activity regulates intracellular Ca2+ dynamics in SVZ astrocytes. To monitor Ca2+ activity selectively in astrocyte-like cells, we used two lines of transgenic mice expressing either GFP fused to a Gq-coupled receptor or DsRed under the human glial fibrillary acidic protein (hGFAP) promoter. GABAA receptor activation induced Ca2+ increases in 40–50% of SVZ astrocytes. GABAA-induced Ca2+ increases were prevented with nifedipine and mibefradil, blockers of L- and T-type voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCC). The L-type Ca2+ channel activator BayK 8644 increased the percentage of GABAA-responding astrocyte-like cells to 75%, suggesting that the majority of SVZ astrocytes express functional VGCCs. SVZ astrocytes also displayed spontaneous Ca2+ activity, the frequency of which was regulated by tonic GABAA receptor activation. These data support a role for ambient GABA in tonically regulating intracellular Ca2+ dynamics through GABAA receptors and VGCC in a subpopulation of astrocyte-like cells in the postnatal SVZ. PMID:20422045

  10. GABAA Receptor in the Thalamic Specific Relay System Contributes to the Propofol-Induced Somatosensory Cortical Suppression in Rat

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yu; Wang, Chaoping; Zhang, Yi; Zhang, Lin; Yu, Tian

    2013-01-01

    Interaction with the gamma-aminobutyric-acid-type-A (GABAA) receptors is recognized as an important component of the mechanism of propofol, a sedative-hypnotic drug commonly used as anesthetic. However the contribution of GABAA receptors to the central nervous system suppression is still not well understood, especially in the thalamocortical network. In the present study, we investigated if intracerebral injection of bicuculline (a GABAA receptor antagonist) into the thalamus ventral posteromedial nucleus (VPM, a thalamus specific relay nuclei that innervated S1 mostly) could reverse propofol-induced cortical suppression, through recording the changes of both spontaneous and somatosensory neural activities in rat’s somatosensory cortex (S1). We found that after injection of bicuculline into VPM, significant increase of neural activities were observed in all bands of local field potentials (total band, 182±6%), while the amplitude of all components in somatosensory evoked potentials were also increased (negative, 121±9% and positive, 124±6%).These data support that the potentiation of GABAA receptor-mediated synaptic inhibition in a thalamic specific relay system seems to play a crucial role in propofol-induced cortical suppression in the somatosensory cortex of rats. PMID:24324778

  11. Selective pyramidal cell reduction of GABA(A) receptor α1 subunit messenger RNA expression in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Glausier, Jill R; Lewis, David A

    2011-09-01

    Levels of messenger RNA (mRNA) for the α1 subunit of the GABA(A) receptor, which is present in 60% of cortical GABA(A) receptors, have been reported to be lower in layer 3 of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) in subjects with schizophrenia. This subunit is expressed in both pyramidal cells and interneurons, and thus lower α1 subunit levels in each cell population would have opposite effects on net cortical excitation. We used dual-label in situ hybridization to quantify GABA(A) α1 subunit mRNA expression in calcium/calmodulin-dependent kinase II α (CaMKIIα)-containing pyramidal cells and glutamic acid decarboxylase 65 kDa (GAD65)-containing interneurons in layer 3 of the PFC from matched schizophrenia and healthy comparison subjects. In subjects with schizophrenia, mean GABA(A) α1 subunit mRNA expression was significantly 40% lower in pyramidal cells, but was not altered in interneurons. Lower α1 subunit mRNA expression in pyramidal cells was not attributable to potential confounding factors, and thus appeared to reflect the disease process of schizophrenia. These results suggest that pyramidal cell inhibition is reduced in schizophrenia, whereas inhibition of GABA neurons is maintained. The cell type specificity of these findings may reflect a compensatory response to enhance layer 3 pyramidal cell activity in the face of the diminished excitatory drive associated with the lower dendritic spine density on these neurons. PMID:21677653

  12. SAHA Enhances Proteostasis of Epilepsy-Associated α1(A322D)β2γ2 GABAa Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Di, Xiao-Jing; Han, Dong-Yun; Wang, Ya-Juan; Chance, Mark R.; Mu, Ting-Wei

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY GABAa receptors are the primary inhibitory ion channels in the mammalian central nervous system. The A322D mutation in the α1 subunit of GABAa receptors is known to result in its degradation and reduce its cell surface expression, leading to loss of GABAa receptor function in autosomal dominant juvenile myoclonic epilepsy. Here, we show that SAHA, a FDA-approved drug, increases the transcription of the α1(A322D) subunit, enhances its folding and trafficking post-translationally, increases its cell surface level, and restores the GABA-induced maximal current in HEK293 cells expressing α1(A322D)β2γ2 receptors to 10% of that for wild type receptors. To enhance the trafficking efficiency of the α1(A322D) subunit, SAHA increases the BiP protein level and the interaction between the α1(A322D) subunit and calnexin. SAHA is the first reported drug that enhances epilepsy-associated GABAa receptor proteostasis. PMID:24211135

  13. Capturing state-dependent dynamic events of GABAA-receptors: a microscopic look into the structural and functional insights.

    PubMed

    Payghan, Pavan V; Bera, Indrani; Bhattacharyya, Dhananjay; Ghoshal, Nanda

    2016-08-01

    The γ-amino butyric acid type A receptors (GABAA-Rs) are the key players in the mammalian brain that meditate fast inhibitory neurotransmission events. The structural integrity of these ligand-gated ion channel controls chloride ion permeability, which in turn monitors important pharmacological functions. Despite ample studies on GABAA-Rs, there was a need for a study on full-length receptor structures, devoted to track structure-function correlations based on their dynamic behavior consideration. We have employed molecular dynamics simulations accompanied by other biophysical methods to shed light on sequential and unaddressed questions like How GABAA-R structure facilitates the entry of GABA molecules at its two orthosteric binding sites? After entry, what structural features and changes monitor site-wise GABA binding differences? In the same context, what are the roles and responsibilities of loops such as C and F? On physiologically relevant time scales, how open to close state transition occurs? How salt bridges such as E155-R207 and E153-R207 maintain state-dependent C-loop structures? In an attempt, our simulation study unravels the complete course of GABA binding-unbinding pathway. This provides us with the relevant understanding of state-dependent dynamic events of GABAA-Rs. PMID:26372345

  14. Bioactivity-guided isolation of GABA(A) receptor modulating constituents from the rhizomes of Actaea racemosa.

    PubMed

    Cicek, Serhat S; Khom, Sophia; Taferner, Barbara; Hering, Steffen; Stuppner, Hermann

    2010-12-27

    Black cohosh (Actaea racemosa) is a frequently used herbal remedy for the treatment of mild climacteric symptoms. In the present study, the modulation of γ-aminobutryic acid (GABA)-induced chloride currents (I(GABA)) through GABA type A (GABA(A)) receptors by black cohosh extracts and isolated compounds was investigated. GABA(A) receptors, consisting of α(1), β(2), and γ(2S) subunits, were expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes, and potentiation of I(GABA) was measured using the two-microelectrode voltage clamp technique. In a bioactivity-guided isolation procedure the positive modulation of I(GABA) could be restricted to the plant terpenoid fractions, resulting in the isolation of 11 cycloartane glycosides, of which four significantly (p < 0.05) enhanced I(GABA). The most efficient effect was observed for 23-O-acetylshengmanol 3-O-β-d-xylopyranoside (4, 100 μM), enhancing I(GABA) by 1692 ± 201%, while actein (1), cimigenol 3-O-β-d-xylopyranoside (6), and 25-O-acetylcimigenol 3-O-α-l-arabinopyranoside (8) were significantly less active. In the absence of GABA, only 4 induced small (not exceeding 1% of I(GABA-max)) chloride inward currents through GABA(A) receptors. It is hypothesized that the established positive allosteric modulation of GABA(A) receptors may contribute to beneficial effects of black cohosh extracts in the treatment of climacteric symptoms. PMID:21082802

  15. HPLC-based activity profiling of Angelica pubescens roots for new positive GABAA receptor modulators in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed

    Zaugg, Janine; Eickmeier, Eva; Rueda, Diana C; Hering, Steffen; Hamburger, Matthias

    2011-04-01

    A petroleum ether extract of the traditional Chinese herbal drug Duhuo (roots of Angelica pubescens Maxim. f. biserrata Shan et Yuan), showed significant activity in a functional two-microelectrode voltage clamp assay with Xenopus oocytes which expressed recombinant γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABA(A)) receptors of the subtype α(1)β(2)γ(2S). HPLC-based activity profiling of the active extract revealed six compounds responsible for the GABA(A) receptor modulating activity. They were identified by microprobe NMR and high resolution mass spectrometry as columbianetin acetate (1), imperatorin (3), cnidilin (4), osthol (5), and columbianedin (6). In concentration-dependent experiments, osthol and cnidilin showed the highest potentiation of the GABA induced chloride current (273.6%±39.4% and 204.5%±33.2%, respectively at 300 μM). Bisabolangelone (2) only showed minor activity at the GABA(A) receptor. The example demonstrates that HPLC-based activity profiling is a simple and efficient method to rapidly identify GABA(A) receptor modulators in a bioactive plant extract. PMID:21147202

  16. Hippocampal Extracellular Signal-Regulated Kinase Signaling has a Role in Passive Avoidance Memory Retrieval Induced by GABAA Receptor Modulation in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Dong Hyun; Kim, Jong Min; Park, Se Jin; Lee, Seungheon; Shin, Chan Young; Cheong, Jae Hoon; Ryu, Jong Hoon

    2012-01-01

    Available evidence strongly suggests that the γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor has a crucial role in memory retrieval. However, the signaling mechanisms underlying the role of GABAA receptor modulation in memory retrieval are unclear. We conducted one-trial passive avoidance task with pre-retention trial drug administration in the hippocampus to test the effects of GABAA receptor modulation on memory retrieval. We further tested the co-involvement of signaling molecules: extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII), and cAMP responsive element-binding protein (CREB). First, we observed that the phosphorylation of hippocampal ERK was required for memory retrieval during the task. Accordingly, to investigate whether GABAA receptor activation or inhibition induces ERK phosphorylation during memory retrieval, drugs that target the GABAA receptor were administered into the hippocampus before the retention trial. Muscimol, a GABAA receptor agonist, and diazepam, an agonist to benzodiazepine-binding site of GABAA receptor, blocked retention trial-induced ERK phosphorylation and impaired memory retrieval. Furthermore, co-treatment with sub-effective dose of U0126, a mitogen-activated protein kinase inhibitor, blocked the upregulation of ERK phosphorylation and impaired memory retrieval, and bicuculline methiodide (BMI), a GABAA receptor antagonist, increased ERK phosphorylation induced by the retention trial and facilitated memory retrieval. Finally, the effects of BMI were blocked by the co-application of a sub-effective dose of U0126. These results suggest that GABAA receptor-mediated memory retrieval is closely related to ERK activity. PMID:22169949

  17. Differential cerebellar GABAA receptor expression in mice with mutations in CaV2.1 (P/Q-type) calcium channels.

    PubMed

    Kaja, S; Payne, A J; Nielsen, E Ø; Thompson, C L; van den Maagdenberg, A M J M; Koulen, P; Snutch, T P

    2015-09-24

    Ataxia is the predominant clinical manifestation of cerebellar dysfunction. Mutations in the human CACNA1A gene, encoding the pore-forming α1 subunit of CaV2.1 (P/Q-type) calcium channels, underlie several neurological disorders, including Episodic Ataxia type 2 and Familial Hemiplegic Migraine type 1 (FHM1). Several mouse mutants exist that harbor mutations in the orthologous Cacna1a gene. The spontaneous Cacna1a mutants Rolling Nagoya (tg(rol)), Tottering (tg) and Leaner (tg(ln)) mice exhibit behavioral motor phenotypes, including ataxia. Transgenic knock-in (KI) mouse strains with the human FHM1 R192Q and S218L missense mutations have been generated. R192Q KI mice are non-ataxic, whereas S218L KI mice display a complex behavioral phenotype that includes cerebellar ataxia. Given the dependence of γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor subunit functioning on localized calcium currents, and the functional link between GABAergic inhibition and ataxia, we hypothesized that cerebellar GABAA receptor expression is differentially affected in Cacna1a mutants and contributes to the ataxic phenotype. Herein we quantified functional GABAA receptors and pharmacologically dissociated cerebellar GABAA receptors in several Cacna1a mutants. We did not identify differences in the expression of GABAA receptor subunits or in the number of functional GABAA receptors in the non-ataxic R192Q KI strain. In contrast, tg(rol) mice had a ∼15% decrease in the number of functional GABAA receptors, whereas S218L KI mice showed a ∼29% increase. Our data suggest that differential changes in cerebellar GABAA receptor expression profile may contribute to the neurological phenotype of cerebellar ataxia and that targeting GABAA receptors might represent a feasible complementary strategy to treat cerebellar ataxia. PMID:26208839

  18. A dual mechanism for impairment of GABAA receptor activity by NMDA receptor activation in rat cerebellum granule cells.

    PubMed

    Robello, M; Amico, C; Cupello, A

    1997-01-01

    The function of the GABAA receptor has been studied using the whole cell voltage clamp recording technique in rat cerebellum granule cells in culture. Activation of NMDA-type glutamate receptors causes a reduction in the effect of GABA. Full GABAA receptor activity was recovered after washing out NMDA and NMDA action was prevented in a Mg+2 containing medium. The NMDA effect was also absent when extracellular Ca+2 was replaced by Ba+2 and when 10 mM Bapta was present in the intracellular solution. Charge accumulations via voltage activated Ca+2 channels greater than the ones via NMDA receptors do not cause any reduction in GABAA receptor function, suggesting that Ca+2 influx through NMDA receptor channels is critical for the effect. The NMDA effect was reduced by including adenosine-5'-O-3-thiophosphate (ATP-gamma-S) in the internal solution and there was a reduction in the NMDA effect caused by deltamethrin, a calcineurin inhibitor. Part of the NMDA induced GABAA receptor impairment was prevented by prior treatment with L-arginine. Analogously, part of the NMDA effect was prevented by blockage of NO-synthase activity by N omega-nitro-L-arginine. A combination of NO-synthase and calcineurin inhibitors completely eliminated the NMDA action. An analogous result was obtained by combining the NO-synthase inhibitor with the addition of ATP-gamma-S to the pipette medium. The additivity of the prevention of the NMDA impairment of GABAA receptor by blocking the L-arginine/NO pathway and inhibiting calcineurin activity suggests an independent involvement of these two pathways in the interaction between NMDA and the GABAA receptor. On the one hand Ca+2 influx across NMDA channels activates calcineurin and dephosphorylates the GABAA receptor complex directly or dephosphorylates proteins critical for the function of the receptor. On the other hand, Ca+2 influx activates NO-synthase and induces nitric oxide production, which regulates such receptors via protein kinase G

  19. Zolpidem and eszopiclone prime α1β2γ2 GABAA receptors for longer duration of activity

    PubMed Central

    Dixon, Christine L; Harrison, Neil L; Lynch, Joseph W; Keramidas, Angelo

    2015-01-01

    Background and Purpose GABAA receptors mediate neuronal inhibition in the brain. They are the primary targets for benzodiazepines, which are widely used to treat neurological disorders including anxiety, epilepsy and insomnia. The mechanism by which benzodiazepines enhance GABAA receptor activity has been extensively studied, but there is little mechanistic information on how non-benzodiazepine drugs that bind to the same site exert their effects. Eszopiclone and zolpidem are two non-benzodiazepine drugs for which no mechanism of action has yet been proposed, despite their clinical importance as sleeping aids. Here we investigate how both drugs enhance the activity of α1β2γ2 GABAA receptors. Experimental Approach We used rapid ligand application onto macropatches and single-channel kinetic analysis to assess rates of current deactivation. We also studied synaptic currents in primary neuronal cultures and in heterosynapses, whereby native GABAergic nerve terminals form synapses with HEK293 cells expressing α1β2γ2 GABAA receptors. Drug binding and modulation was quantified with the aid of an activation mechanism. Key Results At the single-channel level, the drugs prolonged the duration of receptor activation, with similar KD values of ∼80 nM. Channel activation was prolonged primarily by increasing the equilibrium constant between two connected shut states that precede channel opening. Conclusions and Implications As the derived mechanism successfully simulated the effects of eszopiclone and zolpidem on ensemble currents, we propose it as the definitive mechanism accounting for the effects of both drugs. Importantly, eszopiclone and zolpidem enhanced GABAA receptor currents via a mechanism that differs from that proposed for benzodiazepines. PMID:25817320

  20. Ethanol activation of protein kinase A regulates GABAA α1 receptor function and trafficking in cultured cerebral cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Carlson, Stephen L; Kumar, Sandeep; Werner, David F; Comerford, Christopher E; Morrow, A Leslie

    2013-05-01

    Ethanol exposure produces alterations in GABAergic signaling that are associated with dependence and withdrawal. Previously, we demonstrated that ethanol-induced protein kinase C (PKC) γ signaling selectively contributes to changes in GABAA α1 synaptic receptor activity and surface expression. Here, we demonstrate that protein kinase A (PKA) exerts opposing effects on GABAA receptor adaptations during brief ethanol exposure. Cerebral cortical neurons from day 0-1 rat pups were tested after 18 days in culture. Receptor trafficking was assessed by Western blot analysis, and functional changes were measured using whole-cell patch-clamp recordings of evoked and miniature inhibitory postsynaptic current (mIPSC) responses. One-hour ethanol exposure increased membrane-associated PKC and PKA, but steady-state GABAA α1 subunit levels were maintained. Activation of PKA by Sp-adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphothioate triethylamine alone increased GABAA α1 subunit surface expression and zolpidem potentiation of GABA responses, whereas coexposure of ethanol with the PKA inhibitor Rp-adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphothioate triethylamine decreased α1 subunit expression and zolpidem responses. Exposure to the PKC inhibitor calphostin-C with ethanol mimicked the effect of direct PKA activation. The effects of PKA modulation on mIPSC decay τ were consistent with its effects on GABA currents evoked in the presence of zolpidem. Overall, the results suggest that PKA acts in opposition to PKC on α1-containing GABAA receptors, mediating the GABAergic effects of ethanol exposure, and may provide an important target for the treatment of alcohol dependence/withdrawal. PMID:23408117

  1. GABA(A) receptors in visual and auditory cortex and neural activity changes during basic visual stimulation.

    PubMed

    Qin, Pengmin; Duncan, Niall W; Wiebking, Christine; Gravel, Paul; Lyttelton, Oliver; Hayes, Dave J; Verhaeghe, Jeroen; Kostikov, Alexey; Schirrmacher, Ralf; Reader, Andrew J; Northoff, Georg

    2012-01-01

    Recent imaging studies have demonstrated that levels of resting γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the visual cortex predict the degree of stimulus-induced activity in the same region. These studies have used the presentation of discrete visual stimulus; the change from closed eyes to open also represents a simple visual stimulus, however, and has been shown to induce changes in local brain activity and in functional connectivity between regions. We thus aimed to investigate the role of the GABA system, specifically GABA(A) receptors, in the changes in brain activity between the eyes closed (EC) and eyes open (EO) state in order to provide detail at the receptor level to complement previous studies of GABA concentrations. We conducted an fMRI study involving two different modes of the change from EC to EO: an EO and EC block design, allowing the modeling of the haemodynamic response, followed by longer periods of EC and EO to allow the measuring of functional connectivity. The same subjects also underwent [(18)F]Flumazenil PET to measure GABA(A) receptor binding potentials. It was demonstrated that the local-to-global ratio of GABA(A) receptor binding potential in the visual cortex predicted the degree of changes in neural activity from EC to EO. This same relationship was also shown in the auditory cortex. Furthermore, the local-to-global ratio of GABA(A) receptor binding potential in the visual cortex also predicted the change in functional connectivity between the visual and auditory cortex from EC to EO. These findings contribute to our understanding of the role of GABA(A) receptors in stimulus-induced neural activity in local regions and in inter-regional functional connectivity. PMID:23293594

  2. Distinct structural changes in the GABAA receptor elicited by pentobarbital and GABA.

    PubMed

    Muroi, Yukiko; Theusch, Cassandra M; Czajkowski, Cynthia; Jackson, Meyer B

    2009-01-01

    The barbiturate pentobarbital binds to gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABA(A)) receptors, and this interaction plays an important role in the anesthetic action of this drug. Depending on its concentration, pentobarbital can potentiate (approximately 10-100 microM), activate (approximately 100-800 microM), or block (approximately 1-10 mM) the channel, but the mechanisms underlying these three distinct actions are poorly understood. To investigate the drug-induced structural rearrangements in the GABA(A) receptor, we labeled cysteine mutant receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes with the sulfhydryl-reactive, environmentally sensitive fluorescent probe tetramethylrhodamine-6-maleimide (TMRM). We then used combined voltage clamp and fluorometry to monitor pentobarbital-induced channel activity and local protein movements simultaneously in real time. High concentrations of pentobarbital induced a decrease in TMRM fluorescence (F(TMRM)) of labels tethered to two residues in the extracellular domain (alpha(1)L127C and beta(2)L125C) that have been shown previously to produce an increase in F(TMRM) in response to GABA. Label at beta(2)K274C in the extracellular end of the M2 transmembrane helix reported a small but significant F(TMRM) increase during application of low modulating pentobarbital concentrations, and it showed a much greater F(TMRM) increase at higher concentrations. In contrast, GABA decreased F(TMRM) at this site. These results indicate that GABA and pentobarbital induce different structural rearrangements in the receptor, and thus activate the receptor by different mechanisms. Labels at alpha(1)L127C and beta(2)K274C change their fluorescence by substantial amounts during channel blockade by pentobarbital. In contrast, picrotoxin blockade produces no change in F(TMRM) at these sites, and the pattern of F(TMRM) signals elicited by the antagonist SR95531 differs from that produced by other antagonists. Thus, with either channel block by antagonists or

  3. Direct activation of GABAA receptors by barbiturates in cultured rat hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed Central

    Rho, J M; Donevan, S D; Rogawski, M A

    1996-01-01

    1. The direct activation of the GABAA receptor by pentobarbitone (PB) and phenobarbitone (PHB) was characterized in cultured rat hippocampal neurons using whole-cell voltage clamp and single channel recording techniques. 2. In whole-cell recordings, PB and PHB produced a concentration-dependent activation of Cl- current (EC50 values, 0.33 and 3.0 mM, respectively). The response to the barbiturates was similar to that produced by GABA, although GABA was more potent (EC50, 5.5 microM). PB and PHB were substantially more potent in enhancing the response to 1 microM GABA (EC50 values, 94 microM and 0.89 mM, respectively). The maximal magnitude of the responses to PB was similar to that of the maximal response to GABA or GABA + PB. PHB appeared to be modestly less efficacious. 3. The mean deactivation time constant for whole-cell Cl- currents evoked by 1 mM PB + 1 microM GABA was significantly longer (480 +/- 34 ms) than for 1 mM PB (170 +/- 9 ms) or 1 microM GABA (180 +/- 14 ms) alone. 4. Whole-cell currents directly activated by 300 microM PB and 1 microM GABA were blocked by the GABA receptor antagonists bicuculline and picrotoxin. 5. Unitary GABAA receptor channel currents evoked by 300 microM PB had similar main conductance, mean open time and mean burst duration as those activated by 2 microM GABA alone. Single channel openings and bursts were of shorter mean duration when 100 and 300 microM PHB were used. 6. High concentrations of PB (1-3 mM) and PHB (3-10 mM) produced a rapid block of currents activated by the barbiturate alone or by the barbiturate in the presence of 1 microM GABA. The estimated IC50 values for block of PB- and PHB-potentiated GABA currents were 2.8 and 12.9 mM, respectively. 7. Single channel currents activated by high concentrations of PB and PHB alone or in the presence of GABA demonstrated flickering, probably reflecting fast channel block. 8. We conclude that the gating of the GABAA receptor channel by PHB and PB is functionally similar to

  4. Abuse Potential of Soma®: the GABAA Receptor as a Target

    PubMed Central

    Gonzalez, Lorie A.; Gatch, Michael B.; Forster, Michael J.; Dillon, Glenn H.

    2010-01-01

    Soma® (carisoprodol) is an increasingly abused, centrally-acting muscle relaxant. Despite the prevalence of carisoprodol abuse, its mechanism of action remains unclear. Its sedative effects, which contribute to its therapeutic and recreational use, are generally attributed to the actions of its primary metabolite, meprobamate, at GABAA receptors (GABAAR). Meprobamate is a controlled substance at the federal level; ironically, carisoprodol is not currently classified as such. Using behavioral and molecular pharmacological approaches, we recently demonstrated carisoprodol, itself, is capable of modulating GABAAR function in a manner similar to central nervous system depressants. Its functional similarities with this highly addictive class of drugs may contribute to the abuse potential of carisoprodol. The site of action of carisoprodol has not been identified; based on our studies, interaction with benzodiazepine or barbiturate sites is unlikely. These recent findings, when coupled with numerous reports in the literature, support the contention that the non-controlled status of carisoprodol should be reevaluated. PMID:20419052

  5. Identification of dehydroabietc acid from Boswellia thurifera resin as a positive GABAA receptor modulator.

    PubMed

    Rueda, Diana C; Raith, Melanie; De Mieri, Maria; Schöffmann, Angela; Hering, Steffen; Hamburger, Matthias

    2014-12-01

    In a two-microelectrode voltage clamp assay with Xenopus laevis oocytes, a petroleum ether extract (100 μg/mL) of the resin of Boswellia thurifera (Burseraceae) potentiated GABA-induced chloride currents (IGABA) through receptors of the subtype α₁β₂γ₂s by 319.8% ± 79.8%. With the aid of HPLC-based activity profiling, three known terpenoids, dehydroabietic acid (1), incensole (2), and AKBA (3), were identified in the active fractions of the extract. Structure elucidation was achieved by means of HR-MS and microprobe 1D/2D NMR spectroscopy. Compound 1 induced significant receptor modulation in the oocyte assay, with a maximal potentiation of IGABA of 397.5% ± 34.0%, and EC₅₀ of 8.7 μM ± 1.3 μM. This is the first report of dehydroabietic acid as a positive GABAA receptor modulator. PMID:25200370

  6. Ocean acidification slows retinal function in a damselfish through interference with GABAA receptors.

    PubMed

    Chung, Wen-Sung; Marshall, N Justin; Watson, Sue-Ann; Munday, Philip L; Nilsson, Göran E

    2014-02-01

    Vision is one of the most efficient senses used by animals to catch prey and avoid predators. Therefore, any deficiency in the visual system could have important consequences for individual performance. We examined the effect of CO2 levels projected to occur by the end of this century on retinal responses in a damselfish, by determining the threshold of its flicker electroretinogram (fERG). The maximal flicker frequency of the retina was reduced by continuous exposure to elevated CO2, potentially impairing the capacity of fish to react to fast events. This effect was rapidly counteracted by treatment with a GABA antagonist (gabazine), indicating that GABAA receptor function is disrupted by elevated CO2. In addition to demonstrating the effects of elevated CO2 on fast flicker fusion of marine fishes, our results show that the fish retina could be a model system to study the effects of high CO2 on neural processing. PMID:24477607

  7. Discovery of anxiolytic 2-ferrocenyl-1,3-thiazolidin-4-ones exerting GABAA receptor interaction via the benzodiazepine-binding site.

    PubMed

    Pejović, Anka; Denić, Marija S; Stevanović, Dragana; Damljanović, Ivan; Vukićević, Mirjana; Kostova, Kalina; Tavlinova-Kirilova, Maya; Randjelović, Pavle; Stojanović, Nikola M; Bogdanović, Goran A; Blagojević, Polina; D'hooghe, Matthias; Radulović, Niko S; Vukićević, Rastko D

    2014-08-18

    Herein, we report on the synthesis, spectral, crystallographic and electrochemical properties of a small library of N-substituted 2-ferrocenyl-1,3-thiazolidin-4-ones, designed as novel GABAA benzodiazepine-binding site ligands. The anxiolytic properties of the title compounds were evaluated in several different in vivo models, whereas the involvement of the GABAA receptor complex in the activity of the most potent compound, 2-ferrocenyl-3-(4-methoxyphenylethyl)-1,3-thiazolidin-4-one, was inferred from experiments with known GABAA-targeting agents. Ligand docking experiments revealed that the high, dose-dependent, anxiolytic activity of the new compounds might be due to their favorable interactions with the benzodiazepine-binding site of the GABAA receptor complex. The incorporation of the ferrocene core and fine tuning of the distance between the thiazolidinone core and an additional aromatic ring were judged to be crucial structural requirements for the observed anxiolytic effect. PMID:24950490

  8. GABAergic Afferents activate both GABAA and GABAB receptors in mouse substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Brazhnik, Elena; Shah, Fulva; Tepper, James M.

    2008-01-01

    Most in vivo electrophysiological studies of substantia nigra have employed rats. With the recent proliferation of the use of mice for in vitro neurophysiological studies due to the availability of various genetically modified strains to identify the roles of various channels and proteins in neuronal function, it is crucial to obtain data on in vivo responses in mice to verify that the in vitro results reflect functioning of systems comparable to those that have been well studied in rat. Inhibitory responses of rat nigral dopaminergic neurons by stimulation of afferents from striatum, globus pallidus or pars reticulata have been shown to be mediated predominantly or exclusively by GABAA receptors. This is puzzling given the substantial expression of GABAB receptors and the ubiquitous appearance of GABAB synaptic responses in rat dopaminergic neurons in vitro. In the present study we studied electrically evoked GABAergic inhibition in nigral dopaminergic neurons in C57BL/6J mice. Stimulation of the three major GABAergic inputs elicited stronger and longer lasting inhibitory responses than those seen in rats. The early inhibition was GABAA mediated, whereas the later component, absent in rats, was GABAB mediated and selectively enhanced by GABA uptake inhibition. Striatal-evoked inhibition exhibited a slower onset and a weaker initial component compared to inhibition from globus pallidus or substantia nigra pars reticulata. These results are discussed with respect to differences in the size and neuronal density of the rat and mouse brain, and the different sites of synaptic contact of the synapses from the three GABAergic afferents. PMID:18842898

  9. GABAA receptor cysteinyl mutants and the ginkgo terpenoid lactones bilobalide and ginkgolides.

    PubMed

    Ng, Chiu Chin; Duke, Rujee K; Hinton, Tina; Johnston, Graham A R

    2016-04-15

    The terpenoid lactones from Ginkgo biloba, bilobalide and ginkgolides, have been shown to act as negative modulators at α1β2γ2L GABAA receptors. They have structural features similar to those of the chloride channel blocker picrotoxinin. Unlike picrotoxinin, however they are not known to produce convulsant effects. Using two-electrode voltage clamp electrophysiology, this study compared the effect of mutation of 2', 6' and 15' pore facing M2 domain residues to cysteine on the action of picrotoxinin, bilobalide and ginkgolides at α1β2γ2L GABAA receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Picrotoxinin was affected by mutation differently from the ginkgo terpenoid lactones. Although some of these compounds were affected by the mutation at same position and/or subunit, the changes in their potency were found to be dissimilar. The results suggest that the intracellular pore binding site for picrotoxinin, bilobalide, ginkgolide A, ginkgolide B and ginkgolide C is comprised of 2'β-6'β6'γ, 2'α2'β-6'α6'β, 2'α2'β2'γ-6'β6'γ, 2'α, 2'β2'γ-6'β and 2'α2'β, respectively. Unlike bilobalide and ginkgolides, the inhibitory action of picrotoxinin was not affected by mutations at 15' position. It is proposed that 15'α15'β, 15'β, 15'α15'β and 15'α15'β15'γ forms an extracellular pore binding site for bilobalide, ginkgolide A, ginkgolide B and ginkgolide C, respectively. The lack of convulsant effects of bilobalide, and ginkgolide A and B may be associated in part with their different binding locations within the chloride channel. PMID:26953225

  10. GABAA Receptor Blockade Enhances Memory Consolidation by Increasing Hippocampal BDNF Levels

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Dong Hyun; Kim, Jong Min; Park, Se Jin; Cai, Mudan; Liu, Xiaotong; Lee, Seungheon; Shin, Chan Young; Ryu, Jong Hoon

    2012-01-01

    Memory consolidation is the process by which acquired information is converted to something concrete to be retrieved later. Here we examined a potential role for brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in mediating the enhanced memory consolidation induced by the GABAA receptor antagonist, bicuculline methiodide. With the administration of an acquisition trial in naïve mice using a passive avoidance task, mature BDNF (mBDNF) levels were temporally changed in the hippocampal CA1 region, and the lowest levels were observed 9 h after the acquisition trial. In the passive avoidance task, bicuculline methiodide administration within 1 h of training but not after 3 h significantly increased latency time in the retention trial 24 h after the acquisition trial. Concomitantly, 1 h post-training administration of bicuculline methiodide, which enhanced memory consolidation, significantly increased mBDNF levels 9 h after training compared to those of the vehicle-treated control group. In addition, exogenous human recombinant BDNF (hrBDNF) administration 9 h after training into the hippocampal CA1 region facilitated memory consolidation confirming that the increase in mBDNF at around 9 h after training plays a key role in the enhancement of memory consolidation. Moreover, the increases in latency time and immediate early gene expressions by bicuculline methiodide or hrBDNF were significantly blocked by anisomycin, a protein synthesis inhibitor, K252a, a tyrosine receptor kinase (Trk) inhibitor, or anti-TrkB IgG. These findings suggest that the increase in the level of mBDNF and its function during a restricted time window after training are required for the enhancement of memory consolidation by GABAA receptor blockade. PMID:21900885

  11. Altered intrathalamic GABAA neurotransmission in a mouse model of a human genetic absence epilepsy syndrome.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Chengwen; Ding, Li; Deel, M Elizabeth; Ferrick, Elizabeth A; Emeson, Ronald B; Gallagher, Martin J

    2015-01-01

    We previously demonstrated that heterozygous deletion of Gabra1, the mouse homolog of the human absence epilepsy gene that encodes the GABAA receptor (GABAAR) α1 subunit, causes absence seizures. We showed that cortex partially compensates for this deletion by increasing the cell surface expression of residual α1 subunit and by increasing α3 subunit expression. Absence seizures also involve two thalamic nuclei: the ventrobasal (VB) nucleus, which expresses only the α1 and α4 subtypes of GABAAR α subunits, and the reticular (nRT) nucleus, which expresses only the α3 subunit subtype. Here, we found that, unlike cortex, VB exhibited significantly reduced total and synaptic α1 subunit expression. In addition, heterozygous α1 subunit deletion substantially reduced miniature inhibitory postsynaptic current (mIPSC) peak amplitudes and frequency in VB. However, there was no change in the expression of the extrasynaptic α4 or δ subunits in VB and, unlike other models of absence epilepsy, no change in tonic GABAAR currents. Although heterozygous α1 subunit knockout increased α3 subunit expression in medial thalamic nuclei, it did not alter α3 subunit expression in nRT. However, it did enlarge the presynaptic vesicular inhibitory amino acid transporter puncta and lengthen the time constant of mIPSC decay in nRT. We conclude that increased tonic GABAA currents are not necessary for absence seizures. In addition, heterozygous loss of α1 subunit disinhibits VB by substantially reducing phasic GABAergic currents and surprisingly, it also increases nRT inhibition by prolonging phasic currents. The increased inhibition in nRT likely represents a partial compensation that helps reduce absence seizures. PMID:25447232

  12. Juvenile stress-induced alteration of maturation of the GABAA receptor alpha subunit in the rat.

    PubMed

    Jacobson-Pick, Shlomit; Elkobi, Alina; Vander, Shelly; Rosenblum, Kobi; Richter-Levin, Gal

    2008-11-01

    Profound evidence indicates that GABAA receptors are important in the control of physiological response to stress and anxiety. The alpha subunit type composition contributes significantly to the functional characterization of the GABAA receptors. The alpha2, alpha3, alpha5 subunits are predominately expressed in the brain during embryonic and early postnatal periods of normal rats, whilst alpha1 are most prominent during later developmental stages. In the present study, we examined the long-term effects of juvenile stress on GABA alpha subunit expression in adulthood in the amygdala and hippocampus. We applied the elevated platform stress paradigm at juvenility and used the open-field and startle response tests to assess anxiety level in adulthood. Juvenile stress effects without behavioural tests in adulthood were also examined since previous studies indicated that the mere exposure to these tests might be stressful for rats, enhancing the effects of the juvenile exposure to stress. In adulthood, we quantitatively determined the level of expression of alpha1, alpha2 and alpha3 in the hippocampus and amygdala. Our results indicate that subjecting juvenile stressed rats to additional challenges in adulthood results in an immature-like expression profile of these subunits. To test for potential functional implications of these alterations we examined the effects of the anxiolytic (diazepam) and the sedative (brotizolam) benzodiazepines on juvenile stressed and control rats following additional challenges in adulthood. Juvenile stressed rats were more sensitive to diazepam and less sensitive to brotizolam, suggesting that the alterations in GABA alpha subunit expression in these animals have functional consequences. PMID:18364065

  13. Altered Intrathalamic GABAA Neurotransmission in a Mouse Model of a Human Genetic Absence Epilepsy Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Chengwen; Ding, Li; Deel, M. Elizabeth; Ferrick, Elizabeth A.; Emeson, Ronald B.; Gallagher, Martin J.

    2014-01-01

    We previously demonstrated that heterozygous deletion of Gabra1, the mouse homolog of the human absence epilepsy gene that encodes the GABAA receptor (GABAAR) α1 subunit, causes absence seizures. We showed that cortex partially compensates for this deletion by increasing the cell surface expression of residual α1 subunit and by increasing α3 subunit expression. Absence seizures also involve two thalamic nuclei: the ventrobasal (VB) nucleus, which expresses only the α1 and α4 subtypes of GABAAR α subunits, and the reticular (nRT) nucleus, which expresses only the α3 subunit subtype. Here, we found that, unlike cortex, VB exhibited significantly reduced total and synaptic α1 subunit expression. In addition, heterozygous α1 subunit deletion substantially reduced miniature inhibitory postsynaptic current (mIPSC) peak amplitudes and frequency in VB. However, there was no change in expression of the extrasynaptic α4 or δ subunits in VB and, unlike other models of absence epilepsy, no change in tonic GABAAR currents. Although heterozygous α1 subunit knockout increased α3 subunit expression in medial thalamic nuclei, it did not alter α3 subunit expression in nRT. However, it did enlarge the presynaptic vesicular inhibitory amino acid transporter puncta and lengthen the time constant of mIPSC decay in nRT. We conclude that increased tonic GABAA currents are not necessary for absence seizures. In addition, heterozygous loss of α1 subunit disinhibits VB by substantially reducing phasic GABAergic currents and surprisingly, it also increases nRT inhibition by prolonging phasic currents. The increased inhibition in nRT likely represents a partial compensation that helps reduce absence seizures. PMID:25447232

  14. Exploring the molecular basis of neurosteroid binding to the β3 homopentameric GABAA receptor.

    PubMed

    Alvarez, Lautaro D; Estrin, Darío A

    2015-11-01

    Neurosteroids are the principal endogenous modulators of GABA(A) receptors (GABA(A)Rs), which are pentameric membrane-bound proteins that regulate the passage of chloride ions from the extracellular to the intracellular compartment. As consequence of their ability to modify inhibitory functions in the brain, neurosteroids have high physiological and clinical importance and may act as anesthetic, anticonvulsant and anxiolytic drugs. Despite their relevance, essential issues regarding neurosteroid action on GABA(A)Rs are still unsettled. In particular, residues taking part of the steroid recognition are not definitely identified. Taking as starting point the first reported crystal structure of a human GABAA receptor (a β3 homopentamer), we have explored through a combination of computational methods (a cavity-detection algorithm, docking and molecular dynamics simulations) the binding mode of two structurally different representative neurosteroids, pregnanolone and allopregnanolone. We have identified a neurosteroid binding site between the TM3 of one subunit and TM1 and TM4 of the adjacent subunit that is consistent with the set of experimental data reported for the action of neurosteroids on β3 homopentamers. These sites are able to properly accommodate both overall torsioned and flat steroidal structures and they specifically recognize the 3-OH group, explaining the requirement of a 3α-configuration for the activity. We believe that this work provides for first time convincing information about the molecular interaction between neurosteroids and a GABA(A)R. This information largely increases our understanding of this fundamental ligand-receptor system. PMID:26223009

  15. Ethanol Regulation of Synaptic GABAA α4 Receptors Is Prevented by Protein Kinase A Activation.

    PubMed

    Carlson, Stephen L; Bohnsack, John Peyton; Morrow, A Leslie

    2016-04-01

    Ethanol alters GABAA receptor trafficking and function through activation of protein kinases, and these changes may underlie ethanol dependence and withdrawal. In this study, we used subsynaptic fraction techniques and patch-clamp electrophysiology to investigate the biochemical and functional effects of protein kinase A (PKA) and protein kinase C (PKC) activation by ethanol on synaptic GABAA α4 receptors, a key target of ethanol-induced changes. Rat cerebral cortical neurons were grown for 18 days in vitro and exposed to ethanol and/or kinase modulators for 4 hours, a paradigm that recapitulates GABAergic changes found after chronic ethanol exposure in vivo. PKA activation by forskolin or rolipram during ethanol exposure prevented increases in P2 fraction α4 subunit abundance, whereas inhibiting PKA had no effect. Similarly, in the synaptic fraction, activation of PKA by rolipram in the presence of ethanol prevented the increase in synaptic α4 subunit abundance, whereas inhibiting PKA in the presence of ethanol was ineffective. Conversely, PKC inhibition in the presence of ethanol prevented the ethanol-induced increases in synaptic α4 subunit abundance. Finally, we found that either activating PKA or inhibiting PKC in the presence of ethanol prevented the ethanol-induced decrease in GABA miniature inhibitory postsynaptic current decay τ1, whereas inhibiting PKA had no effect. We conclude that PKA and PKC have opposing effects in the regulation of synaptic α4 receptors, with PKA activation negatively modulating, and PKC activation positively modulating, synaptic α4 subunit abundance and function. These results suggest potential targets for restoring normal GABAergic functioning in the treatment of alcohol use disorders. PMID:26857960

  16. GABAA receptor antagonism at the hypoglossal motor nucleus increases genioglossus muscle activity in NREM but not REM sleep.

    PubMed

    Morrison, Janna L; Sood, Sandeep; Liu, Hattie; Park, Eileen; Nolan, Philip; Horner, Richard L

    2003-04-15

    The pharyngeal muscles, such as the genioglossus (GG) muscle of the tongue, are important for effective lung ventilation since they maintain an open airspace. Rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep, however, recruits powerful neural mechanisms that can abolish GG activity, even during strong reflex respiratory stimulation by elevated CO2. In vitro studies have demonstrated the presence of GABAA receptors on hypoglossal motoneurons, and these and other data have led to the speculation that GABAA mechanisms may contribute to the suppression of hypoglossal motor outflow to the GG muscle in REM sleep. We have developed an animal model that allows us to chronically manipulate neurotransmission at the hypoglossal motor nucleus using microdialysis across natural sleep-wake states in rats. The present study tests the hypothesis that microdialysis perfusion of the GABAA receptor antagonist bicuculline into the hypoglossal motor nucleus will prevent the suppression of GG muscle activity in REM sleep during both room-air and CO2-stimulated breathing. Ten rats were implanted with electroencephalogram and neck muscle electrodes to record sleep-wake states, and GG and diaphragm electrodes for respiratory muscle recording. Microdialysis probes were implanted into the hypoglossal motor nucleus for perfusion of artificial cerebrospinal fluid (ACSF) or 100 microM bicuculline during room-air and CO2-stimulated breathing (7 % inspired CO2). GABAA receptor antagonism at the hypoglossal motor nucleus increased respiratory-related GG activity during both room-air (P = 0.01) and CO2-stimulated breathing (P = 0.007), indicating a background inhibitory GABA tone. However, the effects of bicuculline on GG activity depended on the prevailing sleep-wake state (P < 0.005), with bicuculline increasing GG activity in non-REM (NREM) sleep and wakefulness both in room air and hypercapnia (P < 0.01), but GG activity was effectively abolished in those REM periods without phasic twitches in the GG muscle

  17. Reduction of α1GABAA receptor mediated by tyrosine kinase C (PKC) phosphorylation in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Weidong; Wang, Jiaqin; Song, Shunyi; Li, Fang; Yuan, Fangfang

    2015-01-01

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS) caused by lack of fragile X mental retardation protein (Fmr1) is the most common cause of inherited intellectual disability and characterized by many cognitive disturbances like attention deficit, autistic behavior, and audiogenic seizure and have region-specific altered expression of some gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAA) receptor subunits. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction and western blot experiments were performed in the cultured cortical neurons and forebrain obtained from wild-type (WT) and Fmr1 KO mice demonstrate the reduction in the expression of α1 gamma-aminobutyric acid (α1GABAA) receptor, phospho-α1GABAA receptor, PKC and phosphor-PKC in Fmr1 KO mice comparing with WT mice, both in vivo and in vitro. Furthermore, we found that the phosphorylation of the α1GABAA receptor was mediated by PKC. Our results elucidate that the lower phosphorylation of the α1GABAA receptor mediated by PKC neutralizes the seizure-promoting effects in Fmr1 KO mice and point to the potential therapeutic targets of α1GABAA agonists for the treatment of fragile X syndrome. PMID:26550246

  18. 5-HT2 receptors mediate functional modulation of GABAa receptors and inhibitory synaptic transmissions in human iPS-derived neurons

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Haitao; Hu, Lingli; Liu, Chunhua; Su, Zhenghui; Wang, Lihui; Pan, Guangjin; Guo, Yiping; He, Jufang

    2016-01-01

    Neural progenitors differentiated from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) hold potentials for treating neurological diseases. Serotonin has potent effects on neuronal functions through multiple receptors, underlying a variety of neural disorders. Glutamate and GABA receptors have been proven functional in neurons differentiated from iPS, however, little is known about 5-HT receptor-mediated modulation in such neuronal networks. In the present study, human iPS were differentiated into cells possessing featured physiological properties of cortical neurons. Whole-cell patch-clamp recording was used to examine the involvement of 5-HT2 receptors in functional modulation of GABAergic synaptic transmission. We found that serotonin and DOI (a selective agonist of 5-HT2A/C receptor) reversibly reduced GABA-activated currents, and this 5-HT2A/C receptor mediated inhibition required G protein, PLC, PKC, and Ca2+ signaling. Serotonin increased the frequency of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs), which could be mimicked by α-methylserotonin, a 5-HT2 receptor agonist. In contrast, DOI reduced both frequency and amplitude of mIPSCs. These findings suggested that in iPS-derived human neurons serotonin postsynaptically reduced GABAa receptor function through 5-HT2A/C receptors, but presynaptically other 5-HT2 receptors counteracted the action of 5-HT2A/C receptors. Functional expression of serotonin receptors in human iPS-derived neurons provides a pre-requisite for their normal behaviors after grafting. PMID:26837719

  19. Equilibrium potential of GABA(A) current and implications for rebound burst firing in rat subthalamic neurons in vitro.

    PubMed

    Bevan, M D; Wilson, C J; Bolam, J P; Magill, P J

    2000-05-01

    Reciprocally connected glutamatergic subthalamic and GABAergic globus pallidus neurons have recently been proposed to act as a generator of low-frequency oscillatory activity in Parkinson's disease. To determine whether GABA(A) receptor-mediated synaptic potentials could theoretically generate rebound burst firing in subthalamic neurons, a feature that is central to the proposed oscillatory mechanism, we determined the equilibrium potential of GABA(A) current (E(GABA(A))) and the degree of hyperpolarization required for rebound firing using perforated-patch recording. In the majority of neurons that fired rebounds, E(GABA(A)) was equal to or more hyperpolarized than the hyperpolarization required for rebound burst firing. These data suggest that synchronous activity of pallidal inputs could underlie rhythmic bursting activity of subthalamic neurons in Parkinson's disease. PMID:10805713

  20. Development of ligands at γ-aminobutyrric acid type A (GABAA) receptor subtype as new agents for pain relief.

    PubMed

    Guerrini, Gabriella; Ciciani, Giovanna; Bruni, Fabrizio; Selleri, Silvia; Martini, Claudia; Daniele, Simona; Ghelardini, Carla; Di Cesare Mannelli, Lorenzo; Costanzo, Annarella

    2011-12-15

    The identification of compounds with selective anxiolytic-like effects, exerted through the benzodiazepine site on γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABA(A)) receptors, and that show pronounced antihyperalgesia in several pain models, has oriented research towards the development of new agents for the relief of pain. Starting from our previously reported ligands at the benzodiazepine site on GABA(A) receptors showing selective anxiolytic-like effects, we have designed new compounds with the aim of identifying those devoid of the typical side effects of the classical benzodiazepines. Our preliminary results indicate that compounds 4, 10(±) and 11 have a very promising antihyperalgesic profile in different animal pain models (peripheral mono-neuropathy, STZ-induced hyperalgesia). In particular 11 exhibits high potency since it exerted its protective effect starting from the dose of 3mg/kg po, after single injection. PMID:22094278

  1. Identification of both GABAA receptors and voltage-activated Na+ channels as molecular targets of anticonvulsant α-asarone

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ze-Jun; Levinson, Simon R.; Sun, Liqin; Heinbockel, Thomas

    2014-01-01

    Alpha (α)-asarone, a major effective component isolated from the Chinese medicinal herb Acorus tatarinowii, is clinically used as medication for treating epilepsy, cough, bronchitis, and asthma. In the present study, we demonstrated that α-asarone targets central nervous system GABAA receptor as well as voltage-gated Na+ channels. Using whole-cell patch-clamp recording, α-asarone inhibited spontaneous firing of output neurons, mitral cells (MCs), in mouse olfactory bulb brain slice preparation and hyperpolarized the membrane potential of MCs. The inhibitory effect of α-asarone persisted in the presence of ionotropic glutamate receptor blockers but was eliminated after adding a GABAA receptor blocker, suggesting that GABAA receptors mediated the inhibition of MCs by α-asarone. This hypothesis was supported by the finding that α-asarone evoked an outward current, but did not influence inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs). In addition to inhibiting spontaneous firing, α-asarone also inhibited the Nav1.2 channel, a dominant rat brain Na+ channel subtype. The effects of α-asarone on a defined Nav1.2 were characterized using transfected cells that stably expressed the Nav1.2 channel isoform. α-Asarone displayed strong tonic inhibition of Nav1.2 currents in a concentration- and membrane potential-dependent fashion. α-Asarone reduced channel availability in steady-state inactivation protocols by enhancing or stabilizing Na+ channel inactivation. Both Na+ channel blockade and activation of GABAA receptors provide a possible mechanism for the known anti-epileptic effects of α-asarone. It also suggests that α-asarone could benefit patients with cough possibly through inhibiting a Na+ channel subtype to inhibit peripheral and/or central sensitization of cough reflexes. PMID:24653701

  2. Reduced GABAA receptors and benzodiazepine binding sites in the posterior cingulate cortex and fusiform gyrus in autism.

    PubMed

    Oblak, Adrian L; Gibbs, Terrell T; Blatt, Gene J

    2011-03-22

    Individuals with autism display deficits in the social domain including the proper recognition of faces and interpretations of facial expressions. There is an extensive network of brain regions involved in face processing including the fusiform gyrus (FFG) and posterior cingulate cortex (PCC). Functional imaging studies have found that controls have increased activity in the PCC and FFG during face recognition tasks, and the FFG has differential responsiveness in autism when viewing faces. Multiple lines of evidence have suggested that the GABAergic system is disrupted in the brains of individuals with autism and it is likely that altered inhibition within the network influences the ability to perceive emotional expressions. On-the-slide ligand binding autoradiography was used to determine if there were alterations in GABA(A) and/or benzodiazepine binding sites in the brain in autism. Using (3)H-muscimol and (3)H-flunitrazepam we could determine whether the number (B(max)), binding affinity (K(d)), and/or distribution of GABA(A) receptors and benzodiazepine binding sites (BZD) differed from controls in the FFG and PCC. Significant reductions were found in the number of GABA(A) receptors and BZD binding sites in the superficial layers of the PCC and FFG, and in the number of BZD binding sites in the deep layers of the FFG. In addition, the autism group had a higher binding affinity in the superficial layers of the GABA(A) study. Taken together, these findings suggest that the disruption in inhibitory control in the cortex may contribute to the core disturbances of socio-emotional behaviors in autism. PMID:20858465

  3. Differentiation of activities within the GABAA-chloride ionophore complex by means of 35-S-TBPS binding.

    PubMed

    Lloyd, K G; Danielou, G; Thuret, F

    1988-01-01

    From the above results, it is evident that both alpidem and zolpidem modulate the GABAA receptor linked chloride ionophore in an allosteric manner via omega 1 anxiolytic/hypnotic recognition sites. As both are highly specific for the omega 1 site, with little affinity for the omega 2 site, it appears that omega 1 site activation is sufficient to fully engage the various linkages within the GABAA receptor supramolecular complex, resulting in modulation of the chloride ionophore. This action is related to an enhanced affinity of the recognition site for TBPS. Under the present conditions (high sodium chloride, frozen well-washed membranes), several (but not all, e.g. zolpidem) anxiolytics and hypnotics decreased TBPS binding at very high (100-500 microM) concentrations. This effect is unlikely related to the pharmacological activity of these compounds, as it is insensitive to flumazenil and occurs only at concentrations which would be supra-toxic. In contrast, the enhancement of TBPS binding by these anxiolytics and hypnotics occurs within the range of, and correlates with, their therapeutic plasma levels and their affinity for omega 1/omega 2 receptors. The present findings suggest that a different degree of linkage for different compounds occurs between the GABAA receptor and the omega 1/omega 2 receptor mediated enhancement of TBPS binding, as the action of alpidem is completely reversed by bicuculline, whereas for zopidem and flunitrazepam a component of the TBPS enhancement is bicuculline insensitive. A Ro 5-4864 sensitive site (probably not the omega 3 site) occurs with the GABAA receptor supramolecular complex, which apparently participates in the enhancement of TBPS binding.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:2459920

  4. GABAA receptors in the dorsal raphé nucleus of mice: escalation of aggression after alcohol consumption

    PubMed Central

    Takahashi, Aki; Kwa, Carolyn; DeBold, Joseph F.

    2010-01-01

    Rationale The dorsal raphé nucleus (DRN), the origin for serotonin (5-HT) in forebrain areas, has been implicated in the neural control of escalated aggression. Gamma aminobutyric acid type-A (GABAA) and type-B (GABAB) receptors are expressed in the DRN and modulate 5-HT neuronal activity, and both play a role in the behavioral effect of alcohol. Objective The purpose of this study is to examine the interaction between drugs acting on GABA receptors in the DRN and alcohol in their effects on aggressive behaviors. Method Male CFW mice, housed with a female, were trained to self-administer ethanol (1.0 g/kg) or water via an operant conditioning panel in their home cage. Immediately after they drank either ethanol or water, the animals were microinfused with a GABAergic drug into the DRN, and their aggressive behaviors were assessed 10 min later. Muscimol (0.006 nmol), a GABAA receptor agonist, escalated alcohol-heightened aggression but had no effect in the absence of ethanol. This effect of muscimol was prominent in the animals that showed alcohol-heightened aggression, but not the animals that reduced or did not change aggressive behavior after ethanol infusion compared to water. On the other hand, the GABAB agonist baclofen (0.06 nmol) increased aggressive behavior similarly in both water and ethanol conditions. Antagonists of the GABAA and GABAB receptors, bicuculline (0.006 nmol) and phaclofen (0.3 nmol) respectively, did not suppress heightened-aggressive behavior induced by ethanol self-administration. Conclusion GABAA receptors in the DRN are one of the neurobiological targets of alcohol-heightened aggression. Activation of the GABAB receptors in the DRN also produced escalated aggression, but that is independent of the effect of alcohol. PMID:20589493

  5. Human locus coeruleus neurons express the GABA(A) receptor gamma2 subunit gene and produce benzodiazepine binding.

    PubMed

    Hellsten, Kati S; Sinkkonen, Saku T; Hyde, Thomas M; Kleinman, Joel E; Särkioja, Terttu; Maksimow, Anu; Uusi-Oukari, Mikko; Korpi, Esa R

    2010-06-21

    Noradrenergic neurons of the locus coeruleus project throughout the cerebral cortex and multiple subcortical structures. Alterations in the locus coeruleus firing are associated with vigilance states and with fear and anxiety disorders. Brain ionotropic type A receptors for gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) serve as targets for anxiolytic and sedative drugs, and play an essential regulatory role in the locus coeruleus. GABA(A) receptors are composed of a variable array of subunits forming heteropentameric chloride channels with different pharmacological properties. The gamma2 subunit is essential for the formation of the binding site for benzodiazepines, allosteric modulators of GABA(A) receptors that are clinically often used as sedatives/hypnotics and anxiolytics. There are contradictory reports in regard to the gamma2 subunit's expression and participation in the functional GABA(A) receptors in the mammalian locus coeruleus. We report here that the gamma2 subunit is transcribed and participates in the assembly of functional GABA(A) receptors in the tyrosine hydroxylase-positive neuromelanin-containing neurons within postmortem human locus coeruleus as demonstrated by in situ hybridization with specific gamma2 subunit oligonucleotides and autoradiographic assay for flumazenil-sensitive [(3)H]Ro 15-4513 binding to benzodiazepine sites. These sites were also sensitive to the alpha1 subunit-preferring agonist zolpidem. Our data suggest a species difference in the expression profiles of the alpha1 and gamma2 subunits in the locus coeruleus, with the sedation-related benzodiazepine sites being more important in man than rodents. This may explain the repeated failures in the transition of novel drugs with a promising neuropharmacological profile in rodents to human clinical usage, due to intolerable sedative effects. PMID:20417252

  6. Effects of propofol on the dopamine, metabolites and GABAA receptors in media prefrontal cortex in freely moving rats

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yuan; Yu, Tian; Yuan, Chengdong; Yuan, Jie; Luo, Zhuxin; Pan, Yunchao; Zhang, Yi; Zhang, Yu; Yu, Buwei

    2016-01-01

    Recent researches indicate that the mechanism of anesthetic induce loss of consciousness (LOC) is related to dopamine dysfunction in the media prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Given GABAA receptors are the main target for commonly intravenous anesthetic propofol, in this study, we test whether that propofol induced LOC mediate by GABAA receptors in mPFC through altering the dopamine and its metabolites. In the present study, we use Loss of righting reflex (LORR) and Recovery of righting reflex (RORR) as measure to respectively reflect the status of unconsciousness and consciousness recovery in rats. We imitate the clinical anesthesia process, found the minimum of induction and maintenance concentration of propofol respectively was 11 mg/kg and 40 mg/kg per hour. Then, microdialysis technique was used to observe the change of dopamine (DA), metabolites 3, 4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) and homovanillic acid (HVA) before and after intravenous infusion of propofol from caudal vein of freely moving rats. The results showed that propofol can increase the level of DOPAC except HVA, and reduced the level of DA in mPFC during unconsciousness of rats. DOPAC and DA return to the baseline level when the rats began to regain consciousness. Local reverse dialysis infusion of GABAA receptor antagonist GABAzine (50 uM) in mPFC can promote the time of LORR, reduce the time of RORR, and increase the basal level of DOPAC. With this condition, propofol increased HVA instead of DOPAC, whereas the DA was still reduced. These results suggest that propofol may induce unconsciousness by directly inhibiting dopamine release in the mPFC, and this effect does not be mediated by GABAA receptor in mPFC.

  7. Functional sites involved in modulation of the GABAA receptor channel by the intravenous anesthetics propofol, etomidate and pentobarbital.

    PubMed

    Maldifassi, Maria C; Baur, Roland; Sigel, Erwin

    2016-06-01

    GABAA receptors are the major inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors in the brain and are the target for many clinically important drugs. Among the many modulatory compounds are also the intravenous anesthetics propofol and etomidate, and barbiturates. The mechanism of receptor modulation by these compounds is of mayor relevance. The site of action of these compounds has been located to subunit interfaces in the intra-membrane region of the receptor. In α1β2γ2 GABAA receptors there are five such interfaces, two β+/α- and one each of α+/β-, α+/γ- and γ+/β- subunit interfaces. We have used reporter mutations located in the second trans-membrane region in different subunits to probe the effects of changes at these subunit interfaces on modulation by propofol, etomidate and pentobarbital. We provide evidence for the fact that each of these compounds either modulates through a different set of subunit interfaces or through the same set of subunit interfaces to a different degree. As a GABAA receptor pentamer harbors two β+/α- subunit interfaces, we used concatenated receptors to dissect the contribution of individual interfaces and show that only one of these interfaces is important for receptor modulation by etomidate. PMID:26767954

  8. The effects of agonists of ionotropic GABA(A) and metabotropic GABA(B) receptors on learning.

    PubMed

    Zyablitseva, Evgeniya A; Kositsyn, Nikolay S; Shul'gina, Galina I

    2009-05-01

    The research described here investigates the role played by inhibitory processes in the discriminations made by the nervous system of humans and animals between familiar and unfamiliar and significant and nonsignificant events. This research compared the effects of two inhibitory mediators of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA): 1) phenibut, a nonselective agonist of ionotropic GABA(A) and metabotropic GABA(B) receptors and 2) gaboxadol a selective agonist of ionotropic GABA(A) receptors on the process of developing active defensive and inhibitory conditioned reflexes in alert non-immobilized rabbits. It was found that phenibut, but not gaboxadol, accelerates the development of defensive reflexes at an early stage of conditioning. Both phenibut and gaboxadol facilitate the development of conditioned inhibition, but the effect of gaboxadol occurs at later stages of conditioning and is less stable than that of phenibut. The earlier and more stable effects of phenibut, as compared to gaboxadol, on storage in memory of the inhibitory significance of a stimulus may occur because GABA(B) receptors play the dominant role in the development of internal inhibition during an early stage of conditioning. On the other hand this may occur because the participation of both GABA(A) and GABA(B) receptors are essential to the process. We discuss the polyfunctionality of GABA receptors as a function of their structure and the positions of the relevant neurons in the brain as this factor can affect regulation of various types of psychological processes. PMID:19476215

  9. Activation-induced regulation of GABAA receptors: Is there a link with the molecular basis of benzodiazepine tolerance?

    PubMed

    Gravielle, María Clara

    2016-07-01

    Benzodiazepines have been used clinically for more than 50 years to treat disorders such as insomnia, anxiety, and epilepsy, as well as to aid muscle relaxation and anesthesia. The therapeutic index for benzodiazepines if very high and the toxicity is low. However, their usefulness is limited by the development of either or both tolerance to most of their pharmacological actions and dependence. Tolerance develops at different rates depending on the pharmacological action, suggesting the existence of distinct mechanisms for each behavioral parameter. Alternatively, multiple mechanisms could coexist depending on the subtype of GABAA receptor expressed and the brain region involved. Because most of the pharmacological actions of benzodiazepines are mediated through GABAA receptor binding, adaptive alterations in the number, structure, and/or functions of these receptors may play an important role in the development of tolerance. This review is focused on the regulation of GABAA receptors induced by long-term benzodiazepine exposure and its relationship with the development of tolerance. Understanding the mechanisms behind benzodiazepine tolerance is critical for designing drugs that could maintain their efficacy during long-term treatments. PMID:26733466

  10. GABA-A Receptor Modulation and Anticonvulsant, Anxiolytic, and Antidepressant Activities of Constituents from Artemisia indica Linn

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Imran; Karim, Nasiara; Ahmad, Waqar; Abdelhalim, Abeer; Chebib, Mary

    2016-01-01

    Artemisia indica, also known as “Mugwort,” has been widely used in traditional medicines. However, few studies have investigated the effects of nonvolatile components of Artemisia indica on central nervous system's function. Fractionation of Artemisia indica led to the isolation of carnosol, ursolic acid, and oleanolic acid which were evaluated for their effects on GABA-A receptors in electrophysiological studies in Xenopus oocytes and were subsequently investigated in mouse models of acute toxicity, convulsions (pentylenetetrazole induced seizures), depression (tail suspension and forced swim tests), and anxiety (elevated plus maze and light/dark box paradigms). Carnosol, ursolic acid, and oleanolic acid were found to be positive modulators of α1β2γ2L GABA-A receptors and the modulation was antagonized by flumazenil. Carnosol, ursolic acid, and oleanolic acid were found to be devoid of any signs of acute toxicity (50–200 mg/kg) but elicited anticonvulsant, antidepressant, and anxiolytic activities. Thus carnosol, ursolic acid, and oleanolic acid demonstrated CNS activity in mouse models of anticonvulsant, antidepressant, and anxiolysis. The anxiolytic activity of all three compounds was ameliorated by flumazenil suggesting a mode of action via the benzodiazepine binding site of GABA-A receptors. PMID:27143980

  11. Reduction in focal ictal activity following transplantation of MGE interneurons requires expression of the GABAA receptor α4 subunit

    PubMed Central

    Jaiswal, Manoj K.; Keros, Sotirios; Zhao, Mingrui; Inan, Melis; Schwartz, Theodore H.; Anderson, Stewart A.; Homanics, Gregg E.; Goldstein, Peter A.

    2015-01-01

    Despite numerous advances, treatment-resistant seizures remain an important problem. Loss of neuronal inhibition is present in a variety of epilepsy models and is suggested as a mechanism for increased excitability, leading to the proposal that grafting inhibitory interneurons into seizure foci might relieve refractory seizures. Indeed, transplanted medial ganglionic eminence interneuron progenitors (MGE-IPs) mature into GABAergic interneurons that increase GABA release onto cortical pyramidal neurons, and this inhibition is associated with reduced seizure activity. An obvious conclusion is that inhibitory coupling between the new interneurons and pyramidal cells underlies this effect. We hypothesized that the primary mechanism for the seizure-limiting effects following MGE-IP transplantation is the tonic conductance that results from activation of extrasynaptic GABAA receptors (GABAA-Rs) expressed on cortical pyramidal cells. Using in vitro and in vivo recording techniques, we demonstrate that GABAA-R α4 subunit deletion abolishes tonic currents (Itonic) in cortical pyramidal cells and leads to a failure of MGE-IP transplantation to attenuate cortical seizure propagation. These observations should influence how the field proceeds with respect to the further development of therapeutic neuronal transplants (and possibly pharmacological treatments). PMID:25914623

  12. The effect of BLA GABA(A) receptors in anxiolytic-like effect and aversive memory deficit induced by ACPA

    PubMed Central

    Kangarlu-Haghighi, Katayoon; Oryan, Shahrbanoo; Nasehi, Mohammad; Zarrindast, Mohammad-Reza

    2015-01-01

    The roles of GABAergic receptors of the Basolateral amygdala (BLA) in the cannabinoid CB1 receptor agonist (arachydonilcyclopropylamide; ACPA)-induced anxiolytic-like effect and aversive memory deficit in adult male mice were examined in elevated plus-maze task. Results showed that pre-test intra-peritoneal injection of ACPA induced anxiolytic-like effect (at dose of 0.05 mg/kg) and aversive memory deficit (at doses of 0.025 and 0.05 mg/kg). The results revealed that Pre-test intra-BLA infusion of muscimol (GABAA receptor agonist; at doses of 0.1 and 0.2 µg/mouse) or bicuculline (GABAA receptor antagonist; at all doses) impaired and did not alter aversive memory, respectively. All previous GABA agents did not have any effects on anxiety-like behaviors. Interestingly, pretreatment with a sub-threshold dose of muscimol (0.025 µg/mouse) and bicuculline (0.025 µg/mouse) did not alter anxiolytic-like behaviors induced by ACPA, while both drugs restored ACPA-induced amnesia. Moreover, muscimol or bicuculline increased and decreased ACPA-induced locomotor activity, respectively. Finally the data may indicate that BLA GABAA receptors have critical and different roles in anxiolytic-like effect, aversive memory deficit and locomotor activity induced by ACPA. PMID:26648818

  13. Decreased GABA(A) benzodiazepine binding site densities in postmortem brains of Cloninger type 1 and 2 alcoholics.

    PubMed

    Laukkanen, Virpi; Storvik, Markus; Häkkinen, Merja; Akamine, Yumiko; Tupala, Erkki; Virkkunen, Matti; Tiihonen, Jari

    2013-03-01

    Ethanol modulates the GABA(A) receptor to cause sedative, anxiolytic and hypnotic effects that are qualitatively similar to benzodiazepines and barbiturates. The aim of this study was to explore if GABA(A) receptor density is altered in post-mortem brains of anxiety-prone Cloninger type 1 and socially hostile type 2 alcoholic subtypes when compared to controls. The GABA(A) binding site density was measured by whole-hemisphere autoradiography with tritium labeled flunitrazepam ([(3)H]flunitrazepam) from 17 alcoholic (nine type 1, eight type 2) and 10 non-alcoholic post-mortem brains, using cold flumazepam as a competitive ligand. A total of eight specific brain areas were examined. Alcoholics displayed a significantly (p < 0.001, bootstrap type generalizing estimating equations model) reduced [(3)H]flunitrazepam binding site density when compared to controls. When localized, type 2 alcoholics displayed a significantly (p ≤ 0.05) reduced [(3)H]flunitrazepam binding site density in the internal globus pallidus, the gyrus dentatus and the hippocampus, whereas type 1 alcoholics differed from controls in the internal globus pallidus and the hippocampus. While previous reports have demonstrated significant alterations in dopaminergic and serotonergic receptors between type 1 and type 2 alcoholics among these same subjects, we observed no statistically significant difference in [(3)H]flunitrazepam binding site densities between the Cloninger type 1 and type 2 alcoholics. PMID:23332316

  14. A novel modulatory binding site for zinc on the GABAA receptor complex in cultured rat neurones.

    PubMed Central

    Smart, T G

    1992-01-01

    1. The properties of gamma-aminobutyric acidA (GABAA) receptor-ion channel complexes and the interaction with the transition metal zinc, were studied on rat sympathetic and cerebellar neurones in dissociated culture using patch clamp recording techniques. 2. The antagonism of GABA-induced membrane currents by zinc on sympathetic neurones was subject to developmental influence. Using embryonic sympathetic neurones acutely cultured for 24-72 h, GABA responses were more depressed by zinc when compared to responses evoked on adult neurones cultured for the same period. For neurones developing in vivo, the percentage inhibition of GABA responses produced by zinc in embryonic neurones was estimated to decline by 50% after 48.2 days following birth. 3. Embryonic sympathetic neurones maintained in culture for prolonged periods (40-50 days in vitro, DIV) became less sensitive to zinc when compared to neurones cultured for shorter periods (10-20 DIV). The decrease in the zinc inhibition for neurones maintained in vitro proceeded at an apparent rate of 0.55% per day. 4. Activation of the GABA receptor by muscimol (0.2-2 microM) was also antagonized by zinc (50-100 microM). 5. Lowering the pH of the perfusing Krebs solution did not affect the inhibition of GABA responses by zinc on sympathetic neurones. 6. Modulation of the GABAA receptor by some benzodiazepines, a barbiturate, a steroid based on pregnanolone, or antagonists bicuculline and picrotoxinin, did not interfere with the antagonism exerted by zinc on sympathetic neurones. A novel binding site for zinc on the GABAA receptor is proposed. 7. Analysis of the GABA-activated current noise on sympathetic neurones revealed two kinetic components to the power spectra requiring a double Lorentzian fit. The time constant describing the fast component (tau 2, 2.1 ms) was unaffected by zinc, whereas the slow component time constant (tau 1, 21.7 ms) was slightly reduced to 17.1 ms. 8. The apparent single-channel conductance for

  15. Novel analogues of chlormethiazole are neuroprotective in four cellular models of neurodegeneration by a mechanism with variable dependence on GABAA receptor potentiation

    PubMed Central

    VandeVrede, Lawren; Tavassoli, Ehsan; Luo, Jia; Qin, Zhihui; Yue, Lan; Pepperberg, David R; Thatcher, Gregory R

    2014-01-01

    Background and Purpose: Chlormethiazole (CMZ), a clinical sedative/anxiolytic agent, did not reach clinical efficacy in stroke trials despite neuroprotection demonstrated in numerous animal models. Using CMZ as a lead compound, neuroprotective methiazole (MZ) analogues were developed, and neuroprotection and GABAA receptor dependence were studied. Experimental Approach: Eight MZs were selected from a novel library, of which two were studied in detail. Neuroprotection, glutamate release, intracellular calcium and response to GABA blockade by picrotoxin were measured in rat primary cortical cultures using four cellular models of neurodegeneration. GABA potentiation was assayed in oocytes expressing the α1β2γ2 GABAA receptor. Key Results: Neuroprotection against a range of insults was retained even with substantial chemical modification. Dependence on GABAA receptor activity was variable: at the extremes, neuroprotection by GN-28 was universally sensitive to picrotoxin, while GN-38 was largely insensitive. In parallel, effects on extracellular glutamate and intracellular calcium were associated with GABAA dependence. Consistent with these findings, GN-28 potentiated α1β2γ2 GABAA function, whereas GN-38 had a weak inhibitory effect. Neuroprotection against moderate dose oligomeric Aβ1–42 was also tolerant to structural changes. Conclusions and Implications: The results support the concept that CMZ does not contain a single pharmacophore, rather that broad-spectrum neuroprotection results from a GABAA-dependent mechanism represented by GN-28, combined with a mechanism represented in GN-38 that shows the least dependence on GABAA receptors. These findings allow further refinement of the neuroprotective pharmacophore and investigation into secondary mechanisms that will assist in identifying MZ-based compounds of use in treating neurodegeneration. PMID:24116891

  16. GABAA and GABAB receptor-mediated effects in guinea-pig ileum.

    PubMed

    Giotti, A; Luzzi, S; Spagnesi, S; Zilletti, L

    1983-03-01

    -pig ileum: a bicuculline-sensitive GABA(A) receptor, which elicits contraction through an excitatory action on cholinergic post-ganglionic neurones; and a bicuculline-insensitive GABA(B) receptor which causes relaxation through an inhibitory presynaptic action on cholinergic post-ganglionic neurones. We confirm that GABA, homotaurine and muscimol are GABA(A) agonists, while GABA and (-)-baclofen are GABA(B) agonists. PMID:6301600

  17. Adolescent Alcohol Exposure Alters GABAA Receptor Subunit Expression in Adult Hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    Centanni, Samuel W.; Teppen, Tara; Risher, Mary-Louise; Fleming, Rebekah L.; Moss, Julia L.; Acheson, Shawn K.; Mulholland, Patrick J.; Pandey, Subhash C.; Chandler, L. Judson; Swartzwelder, H. Scott

    2014-01-01

    Background The long-term consequences of adolescent alcohol abuse that persist into adulthood are poorly understood and have not been widely investigated. We have shown that intermittent exposure to alcohol during adolescence decreased the amplitude of GABAA receptor-mediated tonic currents in hippocampal dentate granule cells in adulthood. The aim of the present study was to investigate the enduring effects of chronic intermittent alcohol exposure during adolescence or adulthood on the expression of hippocampal GABAA receptors (GABAARs). Methods We used a previously characterized tissue fractionation method to isolate detergent resistant membranes and soluble fractions, followed by western blots to measure GABAAR protein expression. We also measured mRNA levels of GABAAR subunits using quantitative real-time PCR. Results Although the protein levels of α1-, α4- and δ-GABAAR subunits remained stable between postnatal day (PD) 30 (early adolescence) and PD71 (adulthood), the α5-GABAAR subunit was reduced across that period. In rats that were subjected to adolescent intermittent ethanol (AIE) exposure between PD30–46, there was a significant reduction in the protein levels of the δ-GABAAR, in the absence of any changes in mRNA levels, at 48 hours and 26 days after the last ethanol exposure. Protein levels of the α4-GABAAR subunit were significantly reduced, but mRNA levels were increased, 26 days (but not 48 hours) after the last AIE exposure. Protein levels of α5-GABAAR were not changed by AIE, but mRNA levels were reduced at 48hrs but normalized 26 days after AIE. In contrast to the effects of AIE, chronic intermittent exposure to ethanol during adulthood (CIE) had no effect on expression of any of the GABAAR subunits examined. Conclusions AIE produced both short- and long-term alterations of GABAAR subunits mRNA and protein expression in the hippocampus, whereas CIE produced no long lasting effects on those measures. The observed reduction of protein

  18. Estimating the efficiency of benzodiazepines on GABAA receptors comprising γ1 or γ2 subunits

    PubMed Central

    Baburin, I; Khom, S; Timin, E; Hohaus, A; Sieghart, W; Hering, S

    2008-01-01

    Background and purpose: Heterologous expression of α1, β2 and γ2S(γ1) subunits produces a mixed population of GABAA receptors containing α1β2 or α1β2γ2S(γ1) subunits. GABA sensitivity (lower in receptors containing γ1 or γ2S subunits) and the potentiation of GABA-activated chloride currents (IGABA) by benzodiazepines (BZDs) are dependent on γ2S(γ1) incorporation. A variable γ subunit incorporation may affect the estimation of IGABA potentiation by BZDs. We propose an approach for estimation of BZD efficiency that accounts for mixed population of α1β2 and α1β2γ2S(γ1) receptors. Experimental approach: We investigated the relation between GABA sensitivity (EC50) and BZD modulation by analysing triazolam-, clotiazepam- and midazolam-induced potentiation of IGABA in Xenopus oocytes under two-microelectrode voltage clamp. Key results: Plotting EC50 versus BZD-induced shifts of GABA concentration-response curves (ΔEC50(BZD)) of oocytes injected with different amounts of α1, β2 and γ2S(γ1) cRNA (1:1:1–1:1:10) revealed a linear regression between γ2S(γ1)-mediated reduction of GABA sensitivity (EC50) and ΔEC50(BZD). The slope factors of the regression were always higher for oocytes expressing α1β2γ1 subunit receptors (1.8±0.1 (triazolam), 1.6±0.1 (clotiazepam), 2.3±0.2 (midazolam)) than for oocytes expressing α1β2γ2S receptors (1.4±0.1 (triazolam), 1.4±0.1 (clotiazepam), 1.3±0.1 (midazolam)). Mutant GABAA receptors (α1β2-R207Cγ2S) with lower GABA sensitivity showed higher drug efficiencies (slope factors=1.1±0.1 (triazolam), 1.1±0.1 (clotiazepam), 1.2±0.1 (midazolam)). Conclusions and implications: Regression analysis enabled the estimation of BZD efficiency when variable mixtures of α1β2 and α1β2γ2S(γ1) receptors are expressed and provided new insights into the γ2S(γ1) dependency of BZD action. PMID:18604239

  19. Estrous cycle variations in GABAA receptor phosphorylation enable rapid modulation by anabolic androgenic steroids in the medial preoptic area

    PubMed Central

    Oberlander, JG; Porter, DM; Onakomaiya, MM; Penatti, CAA; Vithlani, M; Moss, SJ; Clark, AS; Henderson, LP

    2012-01-01

    Anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS), synthetic testosterone derivatives that are used for ergogenic purposes, alter neurotransmission and behaviors mediated by GABAA receptors. Some of these effects may reflect direct and rapid action of these synthetic steroids at the receptor. The ability of other natural allosteric steroid modulators to alter GABAA receptor-mediated currents is dependent upon the phosphorylation state of the receptor complex. Here we show that phosphorylation of the GABAA receptor complex immunoprecipitated by β2/β3 subunit-specific antibodies from the medial preoptic area (mPOA) of the mouse varies across the estrous cycle; with levels being significantly lower in estrus. Acute exposure to the AAS, 17α-testosterone (17α-MeT), had no effect on the amplitude or kinetics of inhibitory postsynaptic currents in the mPOA of estrous mice when phosphorylation was low, but increased the amplitude of these currents from mice in diestrus, when it was high. Inclusion of the protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor, calphostin, in the recording pipette eliminated the ability of 17α-MeT to enhance currents from diestrous animals, suggesting that PKC-receptor phosphorylation is critical for the allosteric modulation elicited by AAS during this phase. In addition, a single injection of 17α-MeT was found to impair an mPOA-mediated behavior (nest-building) in diestrus, but not in estrus. PKC is known to target specific serine residues in the β3 subunit of the GABAA receptor. Although phosphorylation of these β3 serine residues showed a similar profile across the cycle, as did phosphoserine in mPOA lysates immunoprecipitated with β2/β3 antibody (lower in estrus than in diestrus or proestrus), the differences were not significant. These data suggest that the phosphorylation state of the receptor complex regulates both the ability of AAS to modulate receptor function in the mPOA and the expression of a simple mPOA-dependent behavior through PKC-dependent mechanism

  20. Abuse Potential of Soma: the GABA(A) Receptor as a Target.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez, Lorie A; Gatch, Michael B; Forster, Michael J; Dillon, Glenn H

    2009-01-01

    Soma(®) (carisoprodol) is an increasingly abused, centrally-acting muscle relaxant. Despite the prevalence of carisoprodol abuse, its mechanism of action remains unclear. Its sedative effects, which contribute to its therapeutic and recreational use, are generally attributed to the actions of its primary metabolite, meprobamate, at GABA(A) receptors (GABA(A)R). Meprobamate is a controlled substance at the federal level; ironically, carisoprodol is not currently classified as such. Using behavioral and molecular pharmacological approaches, we recently demonstrated carisoprodol, itself, is capable of modulating GABA(A)R function in a manner similar to central nervous system depressants. Its functional similarities with this highly addictive class of drugs may contribute to the abuse potential of carisoprodol. The site of action of carisoprodol has not been identified; based on our studies, interaction with benzodiazepine or barbiturate sites is unlikely. These recent findings, when coupled with numerous reports in the literature, support the contention that the non-controlled status of carisoprodol should be reevaluated. PMID:20419052

  1. Selective Modulators of α5-Containing GABAA Receptors and their Therapeutic Significance.

    PubMed

    Soh, Ming Shiuan; Lynch, Joseph W

    2015-01-01

    GABAA receptors containing the α5 subunit (5GABAARs) are found mainly in the hippocampus where they mediate a tonic chloride leak current and contribute a slow component to GABAergic inhibitory synaptic currents. Their inhibitory effect on the excitability of hippocampal neurons at least partly explains why changes in the level of activity of 5GABAARs affect cognition, learning and memory. These receptors have been implicated as potential therapeutic targets for a range of clinical conditions including age-related dementia, stroke, schizophrenia, Down syndrome and anesthetic- induced amnesia. Accordingly, a range of pharmacological modulators that selectively target 5GABAARs, as either inhibitors or allosteric enhancers, have been developed. Although many of these compounds show therapeutic effects in animal models of the above clinical disorders, none has been marketed yet due to unsuccessful clinical trials and toxicity in humans. These experiments have also revealed paradoxical effects of 5GABAAR modulation (e.g., cognitive impairments can be reversed by both positive and negative modulation), suggesting that our knowledge of the physiological roles of 5GABAARs is incomplete. This review highlights the various positive and negative modulators for 5GABAARs that have been developed, key findings concerning their effects in behavioral studies, and their importance across a number of therapeutic fields. It also highlights some of the gaps in our knowledge of the physiological and pathological roles of α5GABAARs. PMID:25751008

  2. GABAA receptor-acting neurosteroids: A role in the development and regulation of the stress response

    PubMed Central

    Gunn, Benjamin G.; Cunningham, Linda; Mitchell, Scott G.; Swinny, Jerome D.; Lambert, Jeremy J.; Belelli, Delia

    2015-01-01

    Regulation of hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenocortical (HPA) axis activity by stress is a fundamental survival mechanism and HPA-dysfunction is implicated in psychiatric disorders. Adverse early life experiences, e.g. poor maternal care, negatively influence brain development and programs an abnormal stress response by encoding long-lasting molecular changes, which may extend to the next generation. How HPA-dysfunction leads to the development of affective disorders is complex, but may involve GABAA receptors (GABAARs), as they curtail stress-induced HPA axis activation. Of particular interest are endogenous neurosteroids that potently modulate the function of GABAARs and exhibit stress-protective properties. Importantly, neurosteroid levels rise rapidly during acute stress, are perturbed in chronic stress and are implicated in the behavioural changes associated with early-life adversity. We will appraise how GABAAR-active neurosteroids may impact on HPA axis development and the orchestration of the stress-evoked response. The significance of these actions will be discussed in the context of stress-associated mood disorders. PMID:24929099

  3. Lotus Leaf Alkaloid Extract Displays Sedative-Hypnotic and Anxiolytic Effects through GABAA Receptor.

    PubMed

    Yan, Ming-Zhu; Chang, Qi; Zhong, Yu; Xiao, Bing-Xin; Feng, Li; Cao, Fang-Rui; Pan, Rei-Le; Zhang, Ze-Sheng; Liao, Yong-Hong; Liu, Xin-Min

    2015-10-28

    Lotus leaves have been used traditionally as both food and herbal medicine in Asia. Open-field, sodium pentobarbital-induced sleeping and light/dark box tests were used to evaluate sedative-hypnotic and anxiolytic effects of the total alkaloids (TA) extracted from the herb, and the neurotransmitter levels in the brain were determined by ultrafast liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. The effects of picrotoxin, flumazenil, and bicuculline on the hypnotic activity of TA, as well as the influence of TA on Cl(-) influx in cerebellar granule cells, were also investigated. TA showed a sedative-hypnotic effect by increasing the brain level of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), and the hypnotic effect could be blocked by picrotoxin and bicuculline, but could not be antagonized by flumazenil. Additionally, TA could increase Cl(-) influx in cerebellar granule cells. TA at 20 mg/kg induced anxiolytic-like effects and significantly increased the concentrations of serotonin (5-HT), 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA), and dopamine (DA). These data demonstrated that TA exerts sedative-hypnotic and anxiolytic effects via binding to the GABAA receptor and activating the monoaminergic system. PMID:26448283

  4. Effect of (+)-dehydrofukinone on GABAA receptors and stress response in fish model

    PubMed Central

    Garlet, Q.I.; Pires, L.C.; Silva, D.T.; Spall, S.; Gressler, L.T.; Bürger, M.E.; Baldisserotto, B.; Heinzmann, B.M.

    2015-01-01

    (+)-Dehydrofukinone (DHF) is a major component of the essential oil of Nectandra grandiflora (Lauraceae), and exerts a depressant effect on the central nervous system of fish. However, the neuronal mechanism underlying DHF action remains unknown. This study aimed to investigate the action of DHF on GABAA receptors using a silver catfish (Rhamdia quelen) model. Additionally, we investigated the effect of DHF exposure on stress-induced cortisol modulation. Chemical identification was performed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and purity was evaluated using gas chromatography with a flame ionization detector. To an aquarium, we applied between 2.5 and 50 mg/L DHF diluted in ethanol, in combination with 42.7 mg/L diazepam. DHF within the range of 10-20 mg/L acted collaboratively in combination with diazepam, but the sedative action of DHF was reversed by 3 mg/L flumazenil. Additionally, fish exposed for 24 h to 2.5-20 mg/L DHF showed no side effects and there was sustained sedation during the first 12 h of drug exposure with 10-20 mg/L DHF. DHF pretreatment did not increase plasma cortisol levels in fish subjected to a stress protocol. Moreover, the stress-induced cortisol peak was absent following pretreatment with 20 mg/L DHF. DHF proved to be a relatively safe sedative or anesthetic, which interacts with GABAergic and cortisol pathways in fish. PMID:26628396

  5. Exploring the mechanism of general anesthesia: kinetic analysis of GABAA receptor electrophysiology.

    PubMed

    Lee, Daniel K; Albershardt, Daniel J; Cantor, Robert S

    2015-03-10

    A kinetic model of the effect of agonist and anesthetics on ligand-gated ion channels, developed in earlier work, is further refined and used to predict traces observed in fast-perfusion electrophysiological studies on recombinant GABAA receptors under a wide range of agonist and/or anesthetic concentrations. The model incorporates only three conformational states (resting, open, and desensitized) but allows for the modulation of the conformational free energy landscape connecting these states resulting from adsorption of agonist and/or anesthetic to the bilayer in which the protein is embedded. The model is shown to reproduce the diverse and complex features of experimental traces remarkably well, including both anesthetic-induced and agonist-induced traces, as well as the modulation of agonist-induced traces by anesthetic, either coapplied or continuously present. The solutions to the kinetic equations, which give the time-dependence of each of the nine protein states (three ligation states for each of the three conformations), describe the flow of probability among these states and thus reveal the kinetic underpinnings of the traces. Many of the parameters in the model, such as the desorption rate constants of anesthetic and agonist, are directly related to model-independent experimental measurements and thus can serve as a definitive test of its validity. PMID:25762320

  6. Generation of Functional Inhibitory Synapses Incorporating Defined Combinations of GABA(A) or Glycine Receptor Subunits

    PubMed Central

    Dixon, Christine L.; Zhang, Yan; Lynch, Joseph W.

    2015-01-01

    Fast inhibitory neurotransmission in the brain is mediated by wide range of GABAA receptor (GABAAR) and glycine receptor (GlyR) isoforms, each with different physiological and pharmacological properties. Because multiple isoforms are expressed simultaneously in most neurons, it is difficult to define the properties of individual isoforms under synaptic stimulation conditions in vivo. Although recombinant expression systems permit the expression of individual isoforms in isolation, they require exogenous agonist application which cannot mimic the dynamic neurotransmitter profile characteristic of native synapses. We describe a neuron-HEK293 cell co-culture technique for generating inhibitory synapses incorporating defined combinations of GABAAR or GlyR subunits. Primary neuronal cultures, prepared from embryonic rat cerebral cortex or spinal cord, are used to provide presynaptic GABAergic and glycinergic terminals, respectively. When the cultures are mature, HEK293 cells expressing the subunits of interest plus neuroligin 2A are plated onto the neurons, which rapidly form synapses onto HEK293 cells. Patch clamp electrophysiology is then used to analyze the physiological and pharmacological properties of the inhibitory postsynaptic currents mediated by the recombinant receptors. The method is suitable for investigating the kinetic properties or the effects of drugs on inhibitory postsynaptic currents mediated by defined GABAAR or GlyR isoforms of interest, the effects of hereditary disease mutations on the formation and function of both types of synapses, and synaptogenesis and synaptic clustering mechanisms. The entire cell preparation procedure takes 2–5 weeks. PMID:26778954

  7. Similar GABAA receptor subunit composition in somatic and axon initial segment synapses of hippocampal pyramidal cells

    PubMed Central

    Kerti-Szigeti, Katalin; Nusser, Zoltan

    2016-01-01

    Hippocampal pyramidal cells (PCs) express many GABAAR subunit types and receive GABAergic inputs from distinct interneurons. Previous experiments revealed input-specific differences in α1 and α2 subunit densities in perisomatic synapses, suggesting distinct IPSC decay kinetics. However, IPSC decays evoked by axo-axonic, parvalbumin- or cholecystokinin-expressing basket cells were found to be similar. Using replica immunogold labeling, here we show that all CA1 PC somatic and AIS synapses contain the α1, α2, β1, β2, β3 and γ2 subunits. In CA3 PCs, 90% of the perisomatic synapses are immunopositive for the α1 subunit and all synapses are positive for the remaining five subunits. Somatic synapses form unimodal distributions based on their immunoreactivity for these subunits. The α2 subunit densities in somatic synapses facing Cav2.1 (i.e. parvalbumin) or Cav2.2 (cholecystokinin) positive presynaptic active zones are comparable. We conclude that perisomatic synapses made by three distinct interneuron types have similar GABAA receptor subunit content. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.18426.001 PMID:27537197

  8. Gephyrin Cleavage in In Vitro Brain Ischemia Decreases GABAA Receptor Clustering and Contributes to Neuronal Death.

    PubMed

    Costa, João T; Mele, Miranda; Baptista, Márcio S; Gomes, João R; Ruscher, Karsten; Nobre, Rui J; de Almeida, Luís Pereira; Wieloch, Tadeusz; Duarte, Carlos B

    2016-08-01

    GABA (γ-aminobutyric acid) is the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, and changes in GABAergic neurotransmission modulate the activity of neuronal networks. Gephyrin is a scaffold protein responsible for the traffic and synaptic anchoring of GABAA receptors (GABAAR); therefore, changes in gephyrin expression and oligomerization may affect the activity of GABAergic synapses. In this work, we investigated the changes in gephyrin protein levels during brain ischemia and in excitotoxic conditions, which may affect synaptic clustering of GABAAR. We found that gephyrin is cleaved by calpains following excitotoxic stimulation of hippocampal neurons with glutamate, as well as after intrahippocampal injection of kainate, giving rise to a stable cleavage product. Gephyrin cleavage was also observed in cultured hippocampal neurons subjected to transient oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD), an in vitro model of brain ischemia, and after transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) in mice, a model of focal brain ischemia. Furthermore, a truncated form of gephyrin decreased the synaptic clustering of the protein, reduced the synaptic pool of GABAAR containing γ2 subunits and upregulated OGD-induced cell death in hippocampal cultures. Our results show that excitotoxicity and brain ischemia downregulate full-length gephyrin with a concomitant generation of truncated products, which affect synaptic clustering of GABAAR and cell death. PMID:26093381

  9. ROBUST PHOTO-REGULATION OF GABAA RECEPTORS BY ALLOSTERIC MODULATION WITH A PROPOFOL ANALOG

    PubMed Central

    Yue, Lan; Pawlowski, Michal; Dellal, Shlomo S.; Xie, An; Feng, Feng; Otis, Thomas S.; Bruzik, Karol S.; Qian, Haohua; Pepperberg, David R.

    2013-01-01

    Photochemical switches represent a powerful method for improving pharmacological therapies and controlling cellular physiology. Here we report the photo-regulation of GABAA receptors (GABAARs) by a derivative of propofol (2,6-diisopropylphenol), a GABAAR allosteric modulator, that we have modified to contain photo-isomerizable azobenzene. Using α1β2γ2 GABAARs expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes and native GABAARs of isolated retinal ganglion cells, we show that the trans-azobenzene isomer of the new compound (trans-MPC088), generated by visible light (wavelengths ~440 nm), potentiates the GABA-elicited response and at higher concentrations directly activates the receptors. cis-MPC088, generated from trans-MPC088 by UV light (~365 nm), produces little if any receptor potentiation/activation. In cerebellar slices, MPC088 co-applied with GABA affords bidirectional photo-modulation of Purkinje cell membrane current and spike-firing rate. The findings demonstrate photo-control of GABAARs by an allosteric ligand and open new avenues for fundamental and clinically oriented research on GABAARs, a major class of neurotransmitter receptors in the central nervous system. PMID:23033071

  10. Identification of amino acids involved in histamine potentiation of GABAA receptors

    PubMed Central

    Thiel, Ulrike; Platt, Sarah J.; Wolf, Steffen; Hatt, Hanns; Gisselmann, Günter

    2015-01-01

    Histamine is a neurotransmitter involved in a number of physiological and neuronal functions. In mammals, such as humans, and rodents, the histaminergic neurons found in the tuberomamillary nucleus project widely throughout the central nervous system. Histamine acts as positive modulator of GABAA receptors (GABAARs) and, in high concentrations (10 mM), as negative modulator of the strychnine-sensitive glycine receptor. However, the exact molecular mechanisms by which histamine acts on GABAARs are unknown. In our study, we aimed to identify amino acids potentially involved in the modulatory effect of histamine on GABAARs. We expressed GABAARs with 12 different point mutations in Xenopus laevis oocytes and characterized the effect of histamine on GABA-induced currents using the two-electrode voltage clamp technique. Our data demonstrate that the amino acid residues β2(N265) and β2(M286), which are important for modulation by propofol, are not involved in the action of histamine. However, we found that histamine modulation is dependent on the amino acid residues α1(R120), β2(Y157), β2(D163), β3(V175), and β3(Q185). We showed that the amino acid residues β2(Y157) and β3(Q185) mediate the positive modulatory effect of histamine on GABA-induced currents, whereas α1(R120) and β2(D163) form a potential histamine interaction site in GABAARs. PMID:26074818