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Sample records for neuronal nicotinic receptors

  1. Habenula cholinergic neurons regulate anxiety during nicotine withdrawal via nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Pang, Xueyan; Liu, Liwang; Ngolab, Jennifer; Zhao-Shea, Rubing; McIntosh, J Michael; Gardner, Paul D; Tapper, Andrew R

    2016-08-01

    Cholinergic neurons in the medial habenula (MHb) modulate anxiety during nicotine withdrawal although the molecular neuroadaptation(s) within the MHb that induce affective behaviors during nicotine cessation is largely unknown. MHb cholinergic neurons are unique in that they robustly express neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), although their behavioral role as autoreceptors in these neurons has not been described. To test the hypothesis that nAChR signaling in MHb cholinergic neurons could modulate anxiety, we expressed novel "gain of function" nAChR subunits selectively in MHb cholinergic neurons of adult mice. Mice expressing these mutant nAChRs exhibited increased anxiety-like behavior that was alleviated by blockade with a nAChR antagonist. To test the hypothesis that anxiety induced by nicotine withdrawal may be mediated by increased MHb nicotinic receptor signaling, we infused nAChR subtype selective antagonists into the MHb of nicotine naïve and withdrawn mice. While antagonists had little effect on nicotine naïve mice, blocking α4β2 or α6β2, but not α3β4 nAChRs in the MHb alleviated anxiety in mice undergoing nicotine withdrawal. Consistent with behavioral results, there was increased functional expression of nAChRs containing the α6 subunit in MHb neurons that also expressed the α4 subunit. Together, these data indicate that MHb cholinergic neurons regulate nicotine withdrawal-induced anxiety via increased signaling through nicotinic receptors containing the α6 subunit and point toward nAChRs in MHb cholinergic neurons as molecular targets for smoking cessation therapeutics. PMID:27020042

  2. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor modulation by general anesthetics.

    PubMed

    Flood, P; Role, L W

    1998-11-23

    1. General anesthetics have been shown to inhibit synaptic transmission in multiple areas of the central and peripheral nervous systems. 2. The mechanism of inhibition is not well understood. 3. It has become clear that general anesthetics modulate the function of members of the ligand gated ion channel superfamily, including receptors for GABA(A), glycine (Harrison et al., Mol. Pharmacol. 44(3), 1993, 628-632) and 5HT3 (Zhou and Lovinger, J. Pharmacol. Exp. Therap. 278(2), 1996, 732-740). 4. Studies of the activity of general anesthetics on recombinant neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors have added this receptor family to those potently inhibited by general anesthetics (Flood et al., Anesthesiology 86(4), 1997, 859-865; Violet et al., Anesthesiology 86(4), 1997, 866-874). 5. Studies of neuronal nicotinic receptors in native neurons suggest that the inhibition of these receptors by general anesthetics at low clinical concentrations may be biologically significant (Nicoll, Science 199(4327), 1978, 451-452). 6. Recent work on neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the central nervous system suggests that their primary role may be to modulate synaptic transmission (Role and Berg, Neuron 16(6), 1996, 1077-1085). 7. Thus, inhibition of nicotinic modulation in the central nervous system may result in inhibition of synaptic transmission and some of the behavioral consequences of general anesthesia. PMID:10049135

  3. α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on dopaminergic neurons mediate nicotine reward and anxiety relief.

    PubMed

    McGranahan, Tresa M; Patzlaff, Natalie E; Grady, Sharon R; Heinemann, Stephen F; Booker, T K

    2011-07-27

    Nicotine is the primary psychoactive substance in tobacco, and it exerts its effects by interaction with various subtypes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the brain. One of the major subtypes expressed in brain, the α4β2-nAChR, endogenously modulates neuronal excitability and thereby, modifies certain normal as well as nicotine-induced behaviors. Although α4-containing nAChRs are widely expressed across the brain, a major focus has been on their roles within midbrain dopaminergic regions involved in drug addiction, mental illness, and movement control in humans. We developed a unique model system to examine the role of α4-nAChRs within dopaminergic neurons by a targeted genetic deletion of the α4 subunit from dopaminergic neurons in mice. The loss α4 mRNA and α4β2-nAChRs from dopaminergic neurons was confirmed, as well as selective loss of α4β2-nAChR function from dopaminergic but not GABAergic neurons. Two behaviors central to nicotine dependence, reward and anxiety relief, were examined. α4-nAChRs specifically on dopaminergic neurons were demonstrated to be necessary for nicotine reward as measured by nicotine place preference, but not for another drug of addiction, cocaine. α4-nAChRs are necessary for the anxiolytic effects of nicotine in the elevated plus maze, and elimination of α4β2-nAChRs specifically from dopaminergic neurons decreased sensitivity to the anxiolytic effects of nicotine. Deletion of α4-nAChRs specifically from dopaminergic neurons also increased sensitivity to nicotine-induced locomotor depression; however, nicotine-induced hypothermia was unaffected. This is the first work to develop a dopaminergic specific deletion of a nAChR subunit and examine resulting changes in nicotine-related behaviors. PMID:21795541

  4. alpha4beta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on dopaminergic neurons mediate nicotine reward and anxiety relief

    PubMed Central

    McGranahan, Tresa M.; Patzlaff, Natalie E.; Grady, Sharon R.; Heinemann, Stephen F.; Booker, T.K.

    2012-01-01

    Nicotine is the primary psychoactive substance in tobacco and it exerts its effects by interaction with various subtypes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the brain. One of the major subtypes expressed in brain, the alpha4beta2-nAChR, endogenously modulates neuronal excitability and thereby, modifies certain normal, as well as nicotine-induced, behaviors. Although alpha4-containing nAChRs are widely expressed across the brain, a major focus has been on their roles within midbrain dopaminergic regions involved in drug addition, mental illness and movement control in humans. We developed a unique model system to examine the role of alpha4-nAChRs within dopaminergic neurons by a targeted genetic deletion of the alpha4 subunit from dopaminergic neurons in mice. The loss alpha4 mRNA and alpha4beta2-nAChRs from dopaminergic neurons was confirmed, as well as selective loss of alpha4beta2-nAChR function from dopaminergic but not GABAergic neurons. Two behaviors central to nicotine dependence, reward and anxiety relief, were examined. Alpha4-nAChRs specifically on dopaminergic neurons were demonstrated to be necessary for nicotine reward as measured by nicotine place preference, but not for another drug of addiction, cocaine. Alpha4-nAChRs are necessary for the anxiolytic effects of nicotine in the elevated plus maze and elimination of alpha4-beta2-nAChRs specifically from dopaminergic neurons decreased sensitivity to the anxiolytic effects of nicotine. Deletion of alpha4-nAChRs specifically from dopaminergic neurons also increased sensitivity to nicotine-induced locomotor depression, however nicotine-induced hypothermia was unaffected. This is the first work to develop a dopaminergic specific deletion of a nAChR subunit and examine resulting changes in nicotine behaviors. PMID:21795541

  5. Nicotine Dependence Reveals Distinct Responses from Neurons and Their Resident Nicotinic Receptors in Medial Habenula.

    PubMed

    Shih, Pei-Yu; McIntosh, J Michael; Drenan, Ryan M

    2015-12-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are the molecular target of nicotine. nAChRs in the medial habenula (MHb) have recently been shown to play a role in nicotine dependence, but it is not clear which nAChR subtypes or MHb neuron types are most important. To identify MHb nAChRs and/or cell types that play a role in nicotine dependence, we studied these receptors and cells with brain slice electrophysiology using both acute and chronic nicotine application. Cells in the ventroinferior (MHbVI) and ventrolateral MHb (MHbVL) subregions expressed functional nAChRs with different pharmacology. Further, application of nicotine to cells in these subregions led to different action potential firing patterns. The latter result was correlated with a differing ability of nicotine to induce nAChR desensitization. Chronic nicotine caused functional upregulation of nAChRs selectively in MHbVI cells, but did not change nAChR function in MHbVL. Importantly, firing responses were also differentially altered in these subregions following chronic nicotine. MHbVI neurons treated chronically with nicotine exhibited enhanced basal pacemaker firing but a blunted nicotine-induced firing response. MHbVL neurons did not change their firing properties in response to chronic nicotine. Together, these results suggest that acute and chronic nicotine differentially affect nAChR function and output of cells in MHb subregions. Because the MHb extensively innervates the interpeduncular nucleus, an area critical for both affective and somatic signs of withdrawal, these results could reflect some of the neurophysiological changes thought to occur in the MHb to the interpeduncular nucleus circuit in human smokers. PMID:26429939

  6. Nicotine increases GABAergic input on rat dorsal raphe serotonergic neurons through alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Hernández-Vázquez, F; Chavarría, K; Garduño, J; Hernández-López, S; Mihailescu, S P

    2014-12-15

    The dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN) contains large populations of serotonergic (5-HT) neurons. This nucleus receives GABAergic inhibitory afferents from many brain areas and from DRN interneurons. Both GABAergic and 5-HT DRN neurons express functional nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Previous studies have demonstrated that nicotine increases 5-HT release and 5-HT DRN neuron discharge rate by stimulating postsynaptic nAChRs and by increasing glutamate and norepinephrine release inside DRN. However, the influence of nicotine on the GABAergic input to 5-HT DRN neurons was poorly investigated. Therefore, the aim of this work was to determine the effect of nicotine on GABAergic spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSCs) of 5-HT DRN neurons and the subtype of nAChR(s) involved in this response. Experiments were performed in coronal slices obtained from young Wistar rats. GABAergic sIPSCs were recorded from post hoc-identified 5-HT DRN neurons with the whole cell voltage patch-clamp technique. Administration of nicotine (1 μM) increased sIPSC frequency in 72% of identified 5-HT DRN neurons. This effect was not reproduced by the α4β2 nAChR agonist RJR-2403 and was not influenced by TTX (1 μM). It was mimicked by the selective agonist for α7 nAChR, PNU-282987, and exacerbated by the positive allosteric modulator of the same receptor, PNU-120596. The nicotine-induced increase in sIPSC frequency was independent on voltage-gated calcium channels and dependent on Ca(2+)-induced Ca(2+) release (CICR). These results demonstrate that nicotine increases the GABAergic input to most 5-HT DRN neurons, by activating α7 nAChRs and producing CICR in DRN GABAergic terminals. PMID:25231613

  7. Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: Common Molecular Substrates of Nicotine and Alcohol Dependence

    PubMed Central

    Hendrickson, Linzy M.; Guildford, Melissa J.; Tapper, Andrew R.

    2013-01-01

    Alcohol and nicotine are often co-abused. As many as 80–95% of alcoholics are also smokers, suggesting that ethanol and nicotine, the primary addictive component of tobacco smoke, may functionally interact in the central nervous system and/or share a common mechanism of action. While nicotine initiates dependence by binding to and activating neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), ligand-gated cation channels normally activated by endogenous acetylcholine (ACh), ethanol is much less specific with the ability to modulate multiple gene products including those encoding voltage-gated ion channels, and excitatory/inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors. However, emerging data indicate that ethanol interacts with nAChRs, both directly and indirectly, in the mesocorticolimbic dopaminergic (DAergic) reward circuitry to affect brain reward systems. Like nicotine, ethanol activates DAergic neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA) which project to the nucleus accumbens (NAc). Blockade of VTA nAChRs reduces ethanol-mediated activation of DAergic neurons, NAc DA release, consumption, and operant responding for ethanol in rodents. Thus, ethanol may increase ACh release into the VTA driving activation of DAergic neurons through nAChRs. In addition, ethanol potentiates distinct nAChR subtype responses to ACh and nicotine in vitro and in DAergic neurons. The smoking cessation therapeutic and nAChR partial agonist, varenicline, reduces alcohol consumption in heavy drinking smokers and rodent models of alcohol consumption. Finally, single nucleotide polymorphisms in nAChR subunit genes are associated with alcohol dependence phenotypes and smoking behaviors in human populations. Together, results from pre-clinical, clinical, and genetic studies indicate that nAChRs may have an inherent role in the abusive properties of ethanol, as well as in nicotine and alcohol co-dependence. PMID:23641218

  8. Optochemical control of genetically engineered neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tochitsky, Ivan; Banghart, Matthew R.; Mourot, Alexandre; Yao, Jennifer Z.; Gaub, Benjamin; Kramer, Richard H.; Trauner, Dirk

    2012-02-01

    Advances in synthetic chemistry, structural biology, molecular modelling and molecular cloning have enabled the systematic functional manipulation of transmembrane proteins. By combining genetically manipulated proteins with light-sensitive ligands, innately ‘blind’ neurobiological receptors can be converted into photoreceptors, which allows them to be photoregulated with high spatiotemporal precision. Here, we present the optochemical control of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) with photoswitchable tethered agonists and antagonists. Using structure-based design, we produced heteromeric α3β4 and α4β2 nAChRs that can be activated or inhibited with deep-violet light, but respond normally to acetylcholine in the dark. The generation of these engineered receptors should facilitate investigation of the physiological and pathological functions of neuronal nAChRs and open a general pathway to photosensitizing pentameric ligand-gated ion channels.

  9. Optochemical control of genetically engineered neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Tochitsky, Ivan; Banghart, Matthew R.; Mourot, Alexandre; Yao, Jennifer Z.; Gaub, Benjamin

    2016-01-01

    Advances in synthetic chemistry, structural biology, molecular modelling and molecular cloning have enabled the systematic functional manipulation of transmembrane proteins. By combining genetically manipulated proteins with light-sensitive ligands, innately ‘blind’ neurobiological receptors can be converted into photoreceptors, which allows them to be photoregulated with high spatiotemporal precision. Here, we present the optochemical control of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) with photoswitchable tethered agonists and antagonists. Using structure-based design, we produced heteromeric α3β4 and α4β2 nAChRs that can be activated or inhibited with deep-violet light, but respond normally to acetylcholine in the dark. The generation of these engineered receptors should facilitate investigation of the physiological and pathological functions of neuronal nAChRs and open a general pathway to photosensitizing pentameric ligand-gated ion channels. PMID:22270644

  10. Nicotinic receptor blockade decreases fos immunoreactivity within orexin/hypocretin-expressing neurons of nicotine-exposed rats.

    PubMed

    Simmons, Steven J; Gentile, Taylor A; Mo, Lili; Tran, Fionya H; Ma, Sisi; Muschamp, John W

    2016-11-01

    Tobacco smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. Nicotine is the principal psychoactive ingredient in tobacco that causes addiction. The structures governing nicotine addiction, including those underlying withdrawal, are still being explored. Nicotine withdrawal is characterized by negative affective and cognitive symptoms that enhance relapse susceptibility, and suppressed dopaminergic transmission from ventral tegmental area (VTA) to target structures underlies behavioral symptoms of nicotine withdrawal. Agonist and partial agonist therapies help 1 in 4 treatment-seeking smokers at one-year post-cessation, and new targets are needed to more effectively aid smokers attempting to quit. Hypothalamic orexin/hypocretin neurons send excitatory projections to dopamine (DA)-producing neurons of VTA and modulate mesoaccumbal DA release. The effects of nicotinic receptor blockade, which is commonly used to precipitate withdrawal, on orexin neurons remain poorly investigated and present an attractive target for intervention. The present study sought to investigate the effects of nicotinic receptor blockade on hypothalamic orexin neurons using mecamylamine to precipitate withdrawal in rats. Separate groups of rats were treated with either chronic nicotine or saline for 7-days at which point effects of mecamylamine or saline on somatic signs and anxiety-like behavior were assessed. Finally, tissue from rats was harvested for immunofluorescent analysis of Fos within orexin neurons. Results demonstrate that nicotinic receptor blockade leads to reduced orexin cell activity, as indicated by lowered Fos-immunoreactivity, and suggest that this underlying cellular activity may be associated with symptoms of nicotine withdrawal as effects were most prominently observed in rats given chronic nicotine. We conclude from this study that orexin transmission becomes suppressed in rats upon nicotinic receptor blockade, and that behavioral symptoms associated

  11. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: neuroplastic changes underlying alcohol and nicotine addictions

    PubMed Central

    Feduccia, Allison A.; Chatterjee, Susmita; Bartlett, Selena E.

    2012-01-01

    Addictive drugs can activate systems involved in normal reward-related learning, creating long-lasting memories of the drug's reinforcing effects and the environmental cues surrounding the experience. These memories significantly contribute to the maintenance of compulsive drug use as well as cue-induced relapse which can occur even after long periods of abstinence. Synaptic plasticity is thought to be a prominent molecular mechanism underlying drug-induced learning and memories. Ethanol and nicotine are both widely abused drugs that share a common molecular target in the brain, the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). The nAChRs are ligand-gated ion channels that are vastly distributed throughout the brain and play a key role in synaptic neurotransmission. In this review, we will delineate the role of nAChRs in the development of ethanol and nicotine addiction. We will characterize both ethanol and nicotine's effects on nAChR-mediated synaptic transmission and plasticity in several key brain areas that are important for addiction. Finally, we will discuss some of the behavioral outcomes of drug-induced synaptic plasticity in animal models. An understanding of the molecular and cellular changes that occur following administration of ethanol and nicotine will lead to better therapeutic strategies. PMID:22876217

  12. Serotoninergic dorsal raphe neurons possess functional postsynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Galindo-Charles, Luis; Hernandez-Lopez, Salvador; Galarraga, Elvira; Tapia, Dagoberto; Bargas, José; Garduño, Julieta; Frías-Dominguez, Carmen; Drucker-Colin, René; Mihailescu, Stefan

    2008-08-01

    Very few neurons in the telencephalon have been shown to express functional postsynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), among them, the noradrenergic and dopaminergic neurons. However, there is no evidence for postsynaptic nAChRs on serotonergic neurons. In this study, we asked if functional nAChRs are present in serotonergic (5-HT) and nonserotonergic (non-5-HT) neurons of the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN). In rat midbrain slices, field stimulation at the tegmental pedunculopontine (PPT) nucleus evoked postsynaptic currents (eEPSCs) with different components in DRN neurons. After blocking the glutamatergic and GABAergic components, the remaining eEPSCs were blocked by mecamylamine and reduced by either the selective alpha7 nAChR antagonist methyllycaconitine (MLA) or the selective alpha4beta2 nAChR antagonist dihydro-beta-eritroidine (DHbetaE). Simultaneous addition of MLA and DHbetaE blocked all eEPSCs. Integrity of the PPT-DRN pathway was assessed by both anterograde biocytin tracing and antidromic stimulation from the DRN. Inward currents evoked by the direct application of acetylcholine (ACh), in the presence of atropine and tetrodotoxin, consisted of two kinetically different currents: one was blocked by MLA and the other by DHbetaE; in both 5-HT and non-5-HT DR neurons. Analysis of spontaneous (sEPSCs) and evoked (eEPSCs) synaptic events led to the conclusion that nAChRs were located at the postsynaptic membrane. The possible implications of these newly described nAChRs in various physiological processes and behavioral events, such as the wake-sleep cycle, are discussed. PMID:18512214

  13. Agonist and antagonist effects of nicotine on chick neuronal nicotinic receptors are defined by alpha and beta subunits.

    PubMed

    Hussy, N; Ballivet, M; Bertrand, D

    1994-09-01

    1. Functional neuronal nicotinic receptors were reconstituted in Xenopus oocytes by the nuclear injection of different combinations of chick and rat cDNAs encoding alpha and beta subunits. The pharmacology of these nicotinic receptors was investigated using two-electrode voltage clamp. 2. The sensitivity of the chick alpha 3/beta 2, alpha 3/beta 4, and alpha 4/beta 2 receptors to acetylcholine (ACh) and neuronal bungarotoxin differed markedly, indicating that both subunits contribute to the pharmacological properties of the receptors. 3. Nicotine acted as an agonist on the chick alpha 3/beta 4 and alpha 4/beta 2 receptors and rat alpha 3/beta 2 receptor. In contrast, nicotine (at concentrations > 3 microM) was only a weak partial agonist of the chick alpha 3/beta 2 receptor. Moreover, nicotine coapplied with 3 microM ACh on the chick alpha 3/beta 2 receptor acted as a potent competitive antagonist, with an IC50 of 0.43 microM. No antagonist effect of nicotine could be revealed on the other nicotinic receptors. 4. The effect of nicotine was tested on hybrid receptors obtained by coinjection of chick and rat cDNAs encoding the alpha 3 and beta 2 subunits (yielding the rat alpha 3/chick beta 2 and chick alpha 3/rat beta 2 receptors). Nicotine (10 microM) strongly inhibited both hybrid receptors. 5. Chimeric subunits were constructed by exchanging a segment located in the extracellular N-termini of chick alpha 3 and alpha 4 subunits and chick alpha 3 and rat alpha 3 subunits. These subunits were coexpressed in oocytes with chick or rat beta 2 subunits. The effect of nicotine on these receptors pointed to the importance of a 15 amino acid stretch located 3' of the first transmembrane segment in the determination of the agonist and antagonist action of nicotine. 6. Within this 15 amino acid segment, a single residue differs in chick and rat alpha 3 subunits, at position 198, within the ligand binding site of alpha subunits. Gln198 of the rat alpha 3 subunit was replaced

  14. Aporphine metho salts as neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor blockers.

    PubMed

    Iturriaga-Vásquez, Patricio; Pérez, Edwin G; Slater, E Yvonne; Bermúdez, Isabel; Cassels, Bruce K

    2007-05-15

    (S)-Aporphine metho salts with the 1,2,9,10 oxygenation pattern displaced radioligands from recombinant human alpha7 and alpha4beta2 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) at low micromolar concentrations. The affinity of the nonphenolic glaucine methiodide (4) (vs [(3)H]cytisine) was the lowest at alpha4beta2 nAChR (K(i)=10 microM), and predicentrine methiodide (2) and xanthoplanine iodide (3), with free hydroxyl groups at C-2 or C-9, respectively, had the highest affinity at these receptors (K(i) approximately 1 microM), while the affinity of the diphenolic boldine methiodide (1) was intermediate between these values. At homomeric alpha7 nAChR, xanthoplanine had the highest affinity (K(i)=10 microM) vs [(125)I]alpha-bungarotoxin while the other three compounds displaced the radioligand with K(i) values between 15 and 21 microM. At 100 microM, all four compounds inhibited the responses of these receptors to EC(50) concentrations of ACh. The effects of xanthoplanine iodide (3) were studied in more detail. Xanthoplanine fully inhibited the EC(50) ACh responses of both alpha7 and alpha4beta2 nACh receptors with estimated IC(50) values of 9+/-3 microM (alpha7) and 5+/-0.8 microM (alpha4beta2). PMID:17391965

  15. Functional Upregulation of α4* Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in VTA GABAergic Neurons Increases Sensitivity to Nicotine Reward

    PubMed Central

    Ngolab, Jennifer; Liu, Liwang; Zhao-Shea, Rubing; Gao, Guangping; Gardner, Paul D.

    2015-01-01

    Chronic nicotine exposure increases sensitivity to nicotine reward during a withdrawal period, which may facilitate relapse in abstinent smokers, yet the molecular neuroadaptation(s) that contribute to this phenomenon are unknown. Interestingly, chronic nicotine use induces functional upregulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the mesocorticolimbic reward pathway potentially linking upregulation to increased drug sensitivity. In the ventral tegmental area (VTA), functional upregulation of nAChRs containing the α4 subunit (α4* nAChRs) is restricted to GABAergic neurons. To test the hypothesis that increased functional expression of α4* nAChRs in these neurons modulates nicotine reward behaviors, we engineered a Cre recombinase-dependent gene expression system to selectively express α4 nAChR subunits harboring a “gain-of-function” mutation [a leucine mutated to a serine residue at the 9′ position (Leu9′Ser)] in VTA GABAergic neurons of adult mice. In mice expressing Leu9′Ser α4 nAChR subunits in VTA GABAergic neurons (Gad2VTA:Leu9′Ser mice), subreward threshold doses of nicotine were sufficient to selectively activate VTA GABAergic neurons and elicit acute hypolocomotion, with subsequent nicotine exposures eliciting tolerance to this effect, compared to control animals. In the conditioned place preference procedure, nicotine was sufficient to condition a significant place preference in Gad2VTA:Leu9′Ser mice at low nicotine doses that failed to condition control animals. Together, these data indicate that functional upregulation of α4* nAChRs in VTA GABAergic neurons confers increased sensitivity to nicotine reward and points to nAChR subtypes specifically expressed in GABAergic VTA neurons as molecular targets for smoking cessation therapeutics. PMID:26041923

  16. Dextromethorphan and its metabolite dextrorphan block alpha3beta4 neuronal nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Hernandez, S C; Bertolino, M; Xiao, Y; Pringle, K E; Caruso, F S; Kellar, K J

    2000-06-01

    Dextromethorphan (DM), a structural analog of morphine and codeine, has been widely used as a cough suppressant for more than 40 years. DM is not itself a potent analgesic, but it has been reported to enhance analgesia produced by morphine and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Although DM is considered to be nonaddictive, it has been reported to reduce morphine tolerance in rats and to be useful in helping addicted subjects to withdraw from heroin. Here we studied the effects of DM on neuronal nicotinic receptors stably expressed in human embryonic kidney cells. Studies were carried out to examine the effects of DM on nicotine-stimulated whole cell currents and nicotine-stimulated (86)Rb(+) efflux. We found that both DM and its metabolite dextrorphan block nicotinic receptor function in a noncompetitive but reversible manner, suggesting that both drugs block the receptor channel. Consistent with blockade of the receptor channel, neither drug competed for the nicotinic agonist binding sites labeled by [(3)H]epibatidine. Although DM is approximately 9-fold less potent than the widely used noncompetitive nicotinic antagonist mecamylamine in blocking nicotinic receptor function, the block by DM appears to reverse more slowly than that by mecamylamine. These data indicate that DM is a useful antagonist for studying nicotinic receptor function and suggest that it might prove to be a clinically useful neuronal nicotinic receptor antagonist, possibly helpful as an aid for helping people addicted to nicotine to refrain from smoking, as well as in other conditions where blockade of neuronal nicotinic receptors would be helpful. PMID:10869398

  17. Direct muscarinic and nicotinic receptor-mediated excitation of rat medial vestibular nucleus neurons in vitro

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phelan, K. D.; Gallagher, J. P.

    1992-01-01

    We have utilized intracellular recording techniques to investigate the cholinoceptivity of rat medial vestibular nucleus (MVN) neurons in a submerged brain slice preparation. Exogenous application of the mixed cholinergic agonists, acetylcholine (ACh) or carbachol (CCh), produced predominantly membrane depolarization, induction of action potential firing, and decreased input resistance. Application of the selective muscarinic receptor agonist muscarine (MUSC), or the selective nicotinic receptor agonists nicotine (NIC) or 1,1-dimethyl-4-phenylpiperazinium (DMPP) also produced membrane depolarizations. The MUSC-induced depolarization was accompanied by decreased conductance, while an increase in conductance appeared to underlie the NIC- and DMPP-induced depolarizations. The muscarinic and nicotinic receptor mediated depolarizations persisted in tetrodotoxin and/or low Ca2+/high Mg2+ containing media, suggesting direct postsynaptic receptor activation. The MUSC-induced depolarization could be reversibly blocked by the selective muscarinic-receptor antagonist, atropine, while the DMPP-induced depolarization could be reversibly suppressed by the selective ganglionic nicotinic-receptor antagonist, mecamylamine. Some neurons exhibited a transient membrane hyperpolarization during the depolarizing response to CCh or MUSC application. This transient inhibition could be reversibly blocked by the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) antagonist, bicuculline, suggesting that the underlying hyperpolarization results indirectly from the endogenous release of GABA acting at GABA receptors. This study confirms the cholinoceptivity of MVN neurons and establishes that individual MVN cells possess muscarinic as well as nicotinic receptors. The data provide support for a prominent role of cholinergic mechanisms in the direct and indirect regulation of the excitability of MVN neurons.

  18. INHIBITORY EFFECTS OF VOLATILE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS ON NEURONAL NICOTINIC ACETYLCHOLINE RECEPTORS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    INHIBITORY EFFECTS OF VOLATILE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS ON NEURONAL NICOTINIC ACETYLCHOLINE RECEPTORS.
    A.S. Bale*; P.J. Bushnell; C.A. Meacham; T.J. Shafer
    Neurotoxicology Division, NHEERL, ORD, US Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC, USA
    Toluene (TOL...

  19. Synaptic modulation of excitatory synaptic transmission by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in spinal ventral horn neurons.

    PubMed

    Mine, N; Taniguchi, W; Nishio, N; Izumi, N; Miyazaki, N; Yamada, H; Nakatsuka, T; Yoshida, M

    2015-04-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are distributed widely in the central nervous system and play important roles in higher brain functions, including learning, memory, and recognition. However, functions of the cholinergic system in spinal motoneurons remain poorly understood. In this study, we investigated the actions of presynaptic and postsynaptic nAChRs in spinal ventral horn neurons by performing whole-cell patch-clamp recordings on lumbar slices from male rats. The application of nicotine or acetylcholine generated slow inward currents and increased the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs). Slow inward currents by acetylcholine or nicotine were not inhibited by tetrodotoxin (TTX) or glutamate receptor antagonists. In the presence of TTX, the frequency and amplitude of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) were also increased by acetylcholine or nicotine. A selective α4β2 nicotinic receptor antagonist, dihydro-β-erythroidine hydrobromide (DhβE), significantly decreased nicotine-induced inward currents without affecting the enhancement of sEPSCs and mEPSCs. In addition, a selective α7 nicotinic receptor antagonist, methyllycaconitine, did not affect either nicotine-induced inward currents or the enhancement of sEPSCs and mEPSCs. These results suggest that α4β2 AChRs are localized at postsynaptic sites in the spinal ventral horn, non-α4β2 and non-α7 nAChRs are located presynaptically, and nAChRs enhance excitatory synaptic transmission in the spinal ventral horn. PMID:25613686

  20. Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Modulators Reduce Sugar Intake

    PubMed Central

    Shariff, Masroor; Quik, Maryka; Holgate, Joan; Morgan, Michael; Patkar, Omkar L.; Tam, Vincent; Belmer, Arnauld; Bartlett, Selena E.

    2016-01-01

    Excess sugar consumption has been shown to contribute directly to weight gain, thus contributing to the growing worldwide obesity epidemic. Interestingly, increased sugar consumption has been shown to repeatedly elevate dopamine levels in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), in the mesolimbic reward pathway of the brain similar to many drugs of abuse. We report that varenicline, an FDA-approved nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonist that modulates dopamine in the mesolimbic reward pathway of the brain, significantly reduces sucrose consumption, especially in a long-term consumption paradigm. Similar results were observed with other nAChR drugs, namely mecamylamine and cytisine. Furthermore, we show that long-term sucrose consumption increases α4β2 * and decreases α6β2* nAChRs in the nucleus accumbens, a key brain region associated with reward. Taken together, our results suggest that nAChR drugs such as varenicline may represent a novel treatment strategy for reducing sugar consumption. PMID:27028298

  1. Neuronal-type alpha-bungarotoxin receptors and the alpha 5-nicotinic receptor subunit gene are expressed in neuronal and nonneuronal human cell lines.

    PubMed Central

    Chini, B; Clementi, F; Hukovic, N; Sher, E

    1992-01-01

    alpha-Bungarotoxin (alpha Bgtx) is a toxin known to interact with muscle nicotinic receptors and with some neuronal nicotinic receptors. We show that alpha Bgtx binding sites are also expressed in nonmuscle and nonneuronal human cells, including small cell lung carcinoma and several epithelial cell lines. These receptors are immunologically related to the alpha Bgtx receptors of unknown function described in the nervous system and in the IMR32 neuroblastoma cell line and are distinct from muscle nicotinic receptors. We have also cloned from IMR32 cells the human alpha 5-nicotinic receptor subunit, which is supposed to participate in the formation of alpha Bgtx receptors. Transcripts corresponding to the alpha 5-subunit gene were found not only in neuroblastoma cells but also in all the cell lines expressing alpha Bgtx receptors, with the exception of the TE671 cell line, whose nicotinic receptor subunits are of the muscle type. We conclude that both alpha Bgtx receptors and the alpha 5-nicotinic subunit gene are not neuron-specific, as previously thought, but are expressed in a number of human cell lines of various origin. Images PMID:1542648

  2. Dopamine Receptor Blockade Modulates the Rewarding and Aversive Properties of Nicotine via Dissociable Neuronal Activity Patterns in the Nucleus Accumbens

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Ninglei; Laviolette, Steven R

    2014-01-01

    The mesolimbic pathway comprising the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and projection terminals in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) has been identified as a critical neural system involved in processing both the rewarding and aversive behavioral effects of nicotine. Transmission through dopamine (DA) receptors functionally modulates these effects directly within the NAc. Nevertheless, the neuronal mechanisms within the NAc responsible for these bivalent behavioral effects are presently not known. Using an unbiased conditioned place preference procedure combined with in vivo neuronal recordings, we examined the effects of nicotine reward and aversion conditioning on intra-NAc neuronal sub-population activity patterns. We report that intra-VTA doses of nicotine that differentially produce rewarding or aversive behavioral effects produce opposite effects on sub-populations of fast-spiking interneurons (FSIs) or medium spiny neurons (MSNs) within the shell region of the NAc (NAshell). Thus, while the rewarding effects of intra-VTA nicotine were associated with inhibition of FSI and activation of MSNs, the aversive effects of nicotine produced the opposite pattern of NAshell neuronal population activity. Blockade of DA transmission with a broad-spectrum DA receptor antagonist, α-flupenthixol, strongly inhibited the spontaneous activity of NAshell FSIs, and reversed the conditioning properties of intra-VTA nicotine, switching nicotine-conditioned responses from aversive to rewarding. Remarkably, DA receptor blockade switched intra-NAshell neuronal population activity from an aversion to a reward pattern, concomitant with the observed switch in behavioral conditioning effects. PMID:24896614

  3. Neuronal Acetylcholine Nicotinic Receptors as New Targets for Lung Cancer Treatment.

    PubMed

    Mucchietto, Vanessa; Crespi, Arianna; Fasoli, Francesca; Clementi, Francesco; Gotti, Cecilia

    2016-01-01

    Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. Smoking accounts for approximately 70% of the cases of non- small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and 90% of the cases of small-cell lung cancer (SCLC), although some patients develop lung cancer without a history of smoking. Nicotine is the most active addictive component of tobacco smoke. It does not initiate tumorigenesis in humans and rodents, but it alters the pathophysiology of lung cells by inducing the secretion of growth factors, neurotransmitters and cytokines, and promotes tumour growth and metastases by inducing cell cycle progression, migration, invasion, angiogenesis and the evasion of apoptosis. Most of these effects are a result of nicotine binding and activation of cell-surface neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and downstream intracellular signalling cascades, and many are blocked by nAChR subtype-selective antagonists. Recent genome-wide association studies have revealed single nucleotide polymorphisms of nAChR subunits that influence nicotine dependence and lung cancer. This review describes the molecular basis of nAChR structural and functional diversity in normal and cancer lung cells, and the genetic alterations facilitating smoking-induced lung cancers. It also summarises current knowledge concerning the intracellular pathways activated by nicotine and other compounds present in tobacco smoke. PMID:26845123

  4. Functional Contribution of α3L8′ to the Neuronal Nicotinic α3 Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Nieves-Cintrón, Madeline; Caballero-Rivera, Daniel; Silva, Walter I.; Navedo, Manuel F.; Lasalde-Dominicci, José A.

    2015-01-01

    The role of position L8′, located in transmembrane domain 1 of the neuronal nicotinic α3 subunit, was characterized by using two-electrode voltage clamp in Xenopus oocytes. Four amino acids (Ala, Ser, Phe, and Tyr) were inserted at this conserved position, and the mutant subunit was coexpressed with either wild-type β2 or β4 subunits. These substitutions led to significant alterations in the pharmacodynamic parameters of cholinergic agents, resulting in loss of function. Ala and Ser substitutions resulted in losses in agonist (ACh, nicotine, and DMPP) potency and intrinsic activity at both α3β2 and α3β4 receptors. Similarly, significant changes in antagonist potency were produced by the Ala and Ser substitutions. Phe and Tyr mutations did not alter the receptor's EC50 for ACh or nicotine but reduced the EC50 for DMPP at both receptors. The Phe mutation also reduced the intrinsic activity of all agonists tested at both receptors. The Tyr mutation, though, led to a decrease in intrinsic activity for all agonists at the α3β2 receptor, yet resulted in no changes for DMPP, a decrease for nicotine, and an increase for ACh at the α3β4 receptor. The most dramatic changes in the receptor's functional properties were produced by substitutions that introduced the largest changes in amino acid volume. Additional replacements (Gly, Thr, and Val) suggested an inverse correlation between amino acid volume at position α3L8′ and EC50 for α3β4 nAChRs; however, α3β2 nAChRs displayed a nonlinear correlation. These data demonstrate that structural alterations at position α3L8′ could propagate to the agonist-binding site. PMID:18615639

  5. Medial Habenula Output Circuit Mediated by α5 Nicotinic Receptor-Expressing GABAergic Neurons in the Interpeduncular Nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Hsu, Yun-Wei A.; Tempest, Lynne; Quina, Lely A.; Wei, Aguan D.; Zeng, Hongkui

    2013-01-01

    The Chrna5 gene encodes the α5 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit, an “accessory” subunit of pentameric nicotinic receptors, that has been shown to play a role in nicotine-related behaviors in rodents and is genetically linked to smoking behavior in humans. Here we have used a BAC transgenic mouse line, α5GFP, to examine the cellular phenotype, connectivity, and function of α5-expressing neurons. Although the medial habenula (MHb) has been proposed as a site of α5 function, α5GFP is not detectable in the MHb, and α5 mRNA is expressed there only at very low levels. However, α5GFP is strongly expressed in a subset of neurons in the interpeduncular nucleus (IP), median raphe/paramedian raphe (MnR/PMnR), and dorsal tegmental area (DTg). Double-label fluorescence in situ hybridization reveals that these neurons are exclusively GABAergic. Transgenic and conventional tract tracing show that α5GFP neurons in the IP project principally to the MnR/PMnR and DTg/interfascicular dorsal raphe, both areas rich in serotonergic neurons. The α5GFP neurons in the IP are located in a region that receives cholinergic fiber inputs from the ventral MHb, and optogenetically assisted circuit mapping demonstrates a monosynaptic connection between these cholinergic neurons and α5GFP IP neurons. Selective inhibitors of both α4β2- and α3β4-containing nicotinic receptors were able to reduce nicotine-evoked inward currents in α5GFP neurons in the IP, suggesting a mixed nicotinic receptor profile in these cells. Together, these findings show that the α5-GABAergic interneurons form a link from the MHb to serotonergic brain centers, which is likely to mediate some of the behavioral effects of nicotine. PMID:24227714

  6. Medial habenula output circuit mediated by α5 nicotinic receptor-expressing GABAergic neurons in the interpeduncular nucleus.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Yun-Wei A; Tempest, Lynne; Quina, Lely A; Wei, Aguan D; Zeng, Hongkui; Turner, Eric E

    2013-11-13

    The Chrna5 gene encodes the α5 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit, an "accessory" subunit of pentameric nicotinic receptors, that has been shown to play a role in nicotine-related behaviors in rodents and is genetically linked to smoking behavior in humans. Here we have used a BAC transgenic mouse line, α5(GFP), to examine the cellular phenotype, connectivity, and function of α5-expressing neurons. Although the medial habenula (MHb) has been proposed as a site of α5 function, α5(GFP) is not detectable in the MHb, and α5 mRNA is expressed there only at very low levels. However, α5(GFP) is strongly expressed in a subset of neurons in the interpeduncular nucleus (IP), median raphe/paramedian raphe (MnR/PMnR), and dorsal tegmental area (DTg). Double-label fluorescence in situ hybridization reveals that these neurons are exclusively GABAergic. Transgenic and conventional tract tracing show that α5(GFP) neurons in the IP project principally to the MnR/PMnR and DTg/interfascicular dorsal raphe, both areas rich in serotonergic neurons. The α5(GFP) neurons in the IP are located in a region that receives cholinergic fiber inputs from the ventral MHb, and optogenetically assisted circuit mapping demonstrates a monosynaptic connection between these cholinergic neurons and α5(GFP) IP neurons. Selective inhibitors of both α4β2- and α3β4-containing nicotinic receptors were able to reduce nicotine-evoked inward currents in α5(GFP) neurons in the IP, suggesting a mixed nicotinic receptor profile in these cells. Together, these findings show that the α5-GABAergic interneurons form a link from the MHb to serotonergic brain centers, which is likely to mediate some of the behavioral effects of nicotine. PMID:24227714

  7. Structure-activity relationships of alpha-conotoxins targeting neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Millard, Emma L; Daly, Norelle L; Craik, David J

    2004-06-01

    alpha-Conotoxins that target the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor have a range of potential therapeutic applications and are valuable probes for examining receptor subtype selectivity. The three-dimensional structures of about half of the known neuronal specific alpha-conotoxins have now been determined and have a consensus fold containing a helical region braced by two conserved disulfide bonds. These disulfide bonds define the two-loop framework characteristic for alpha-conotoxins, CCX(m)CX(n)C, where loop 1 comprises four residues (m = 4) and loop 2 between three and seven residues (n = 3, 6 or 7). Structural studies, particularly using NMR spectroscopy have provided an insight into the role and spatial location of residues implicated in receptor binding and biological activity. PMID:15182347

  8. Varenicline, a Partial Agonist at Neuronal Nicotinic Receptors, Reduces Nicotine-Induced Increases in 20% Ethanol Operant Self-Administration in Sprague-Dawley Rats

    PubMed Central

    Bito-Onon, Jade J.; Simms, Jeffrey A.; Chatterjee, Susmita; Holgate, Joan; Bartlett, Selena E.

    2010-01-01

    Alcohol and nicotine use disorders are often treated as separate diseases, despite evidence that approximately 80–90% of alcohol dependent individuals are also heavy smokers. Both nicotine and ethanol have been shown to interact with neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), suggesting these receptors are a common biological target for the effects of nicotine and ethanol in the brain. There are few studies that have examined the effects of co-administered nicotine and ethanol on the activity of nAChRs in rodents. In the present study, we show that Sprague-Dawley rats, a strain often used for nicotine studies but not as often for voluntary ethanol intake studies, will consume 20% ethanol using both the intermittent-access two-bottle-choice and operant self-administration models without the need for sucrose fading. We show that nicotine (0.2mg/kg and 0.8mg/kg, s.c.) significantly increases operant 20% ethanol self-administration and varenicline (2mg/kg, s.c), a partial agonist at nAChRs, significantly decreases operant ethanol self-administration and nicotine-induced increases in ethanol self-administration. This suggests that nAChRs play an important role in increasing ethanol self-administration and that varenicline may be an efficacious treatment for alcohol and nicotine co-dependencies. PMID:21392178

  9. Megacystis, mydriasis, and ion channel defect in mice lacking the α3 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Wei; Gelber, Shari; Orr-Urtreger, Avi; Armstrong, Dawna; Lewis, Richard A.; Ou, Ching-Nan; Patrick, James; Role, Lorna; De Biasi, Mariella; Beaudet, Arthur L.

    1999-01-01

    The α3 subunit of the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor is widely expressed in autonomic ganglia and in some parts of the brain. The α3 subunit can form heteromultimeric ion channels with other α subunits and with β2 and β4 subunits, but its function in vivo is poorly understood. We prepared a null mutation for the α3 gene by deletion of exon 5 and found that homozygous (−/−) mice lacked detectable mRNA on Northern blotting. The −/− mice survive to birth but have impaired growth and increased mortality before and after weaning. The −/− mice have extreme bladder enlargement, dribbling urination, bladder infection, urinary stones, and widely dilated ocular pupils that do not contract in response to light. Detailed histological studies of −/− mice revealed no significant abnormalities in brain or peripheral tissues except urinary bladder, where inflammation was prominent. Ganglion cells and axons were present in bladder and bowel. Bladder strips from −/− mice failed to contract in response to 0.1 mM nicotine, but did contract in response to electrical field stimulation or carbamoylcholine. The number of acetylcholine-activated single-channel currents was severely reduced in the neurons of superior cervical ganglia in −/− mice with five physiologically distinguishable nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes with different conductance and kinetic properties in wild-type mice, all of which were reduced in −/− mice. The findings in the α3-null mice suggest that this subunit is an essential component of the nicotinic receptors mediating normal function of the autonomic nervous system. The phenotype in −/− mice may be similar to the rare human genetic disorder of megacystis–microcolon–intestinal hypoperistalsis syndrome. PMID:10318955

  10. Functional Expression of Two Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors from cDNA Clones Identifies a Gene Family

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boulter, Jim; Connolly, John; Deneris, Evan; Goldman, Dan; Heinemann, Steven; Patrick, Jim

    1987-11-01

    A family of genes coding for proteins homologous to the α subunit of the muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor has been identified in the rat genome. These genes are transcribed in the central and peripheral nervous systems in areas known to contain functional nicotinic receptors. In this paper, we demonstrate that three of these genes, which we call alpha3, alpha4, and beta2, encode proteins that form functional nicotinic acetylcholine receptors when expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Oocytes expressing either alpha3 or alpha4 protein in combination with the beta2 protein produced a strong response to acetylcholine. Oocytes expressing only the alpha4 protein gave a weak response to acetylcholine. These receptors are activated by acetylcholine and nicotine and are blocked by Bungarus toxin 3.1. They are not blocked by α -bungarotoxin, which blocks the muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Thus, the receptors formed by the alpha3, alpha4, and beta2 subunits are pharmacologically similar to the ganglionic-type neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. These results indicate that the alpha3, alpha4, and beta2 genes encode functional nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits that are expressed in the brain and peripheral nervous system.

  11. Genes expressed in the brain define three distinct neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed Central

    Nef, P; Oneyser, C; Alliod, C; Couturier, S; Ballivet, M

    1988-01-01

    Four genes encode the related protein subunits that assemble to form the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) at the motor endplate of vertebrates. We have isolated from the chicken genome four additional members of the same gene family whose protein products, termed alpha 2, alpha 3, alpha 4 and n alpha (non-alpha) probably define three distinct neuronal nAChR subtypes. The neuronal nAChR genes have identical structures consisting of six protein-coding exons and specify proteins that are best aligned with the chicken endplate alpha subunit, whose gene we have also characterized. mRNA transcripts encoding alpha 4 and n alpha are abundant in embryonic and in adult avian brain, whereas alpha 2 and alpha 3 transcripts are much scarcer. The same set of neuronal genes probably exists in all vertebrates since their counterparts have also been identified in the rat genome. Images PMID:3267226

  12. Neuregulin 1 as an endogenous regulator of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in adult major pelvic ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Kim, Han-Gyu; Cho, Sung-Min; Lee, Choong-Ku; Jeong, Seong-Woo

    2015-08-01

    We investigated whether endogenous neuregulin 1 (NRG1) is released in a soluble form (called sNRG1) and upregulates expression of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) in autonomic major pelvic ganglion (MPG) neurons of adult rats. To elicit the release of sNRG1, either the hypogastric nerve or the pelvic nerve was electrically stimulated. Then, the MPG-conditioned medium (CM) was subjected to western blotting using an antibody directed against the N-terminal ectodomain of NRG1. Both sympathetic and parasympathetic nerve activation elicited the release of sNRG1 from MPG neurons in a frequency-dependent manner. The sNRG1 release was also induced by treatment of MPG neurons with either high KCl or neurotrophic factors. The biological activity of the released sNRG1 was detected by tyrosine phosphorylation (p185) of the ErbB2 receptors in MPG neurons. When MPG neurons were incubated for 6 h in the CM, the protein level of the nAChR α3 subunit and ACh-induced current (IACh) density were significantly increased. The CM-induced changes in IACh was abolished by a selective ErbB2 tyrosine kinase inhibitor. Taken together, these data suggest that NRG1 functions as an endogenous regulator of nAChR expression in adult MPG neurons. PMID:26043693

  13. Unconventional pharmacology of a neuronal nicotinic receptor mutated in the channel domain.

    PubMed

    Bertrand, D; Devillers-Thiéry, A; Revah, F; Galzi, J L; Hussy, N; Mulle, C; Bertrand, S; Ballivet, M; Changeux, J P

    1992-02-15

    The putative channel-forming MII domains of the nicotinic, gamma-aminobutyric acid type A, and glycine receptors contain a highly conserved leucine residue. Mutation of this hydrophobic amino acid in the neuronal nicotinic receptor alpha 7 (Leu-247), reconstituted in Xenopus oocytes, modifies the ionic response to acetylcholine and alters desensitization. Furthermore, the Leu----Thr (L247T) mutant has two conducting states (46 pS and 80 pS), in contrast with the wild-type (WT) receptor, which has only one (45 pS). We now show that this mutant possesses a rather paradoxical pharmacology: antagonists of the WT receptor such as dihydro-beta-erythroidin, hexamethonium, or (+)-tubocurarine elicit ionic currents when applied to the L247T alpha 7 mutant and these responses are blocked by alpha-bungarotoxin. Furthermore, prolonged application of acetylcholine causes desensitization in the WT but leads to a potentiation of the responses to acetylcholine or dihydro-beta-erythroidin in the mutant. These data are consistent with a scheme in which mutation of Leu-247 renders a desensitized state in the WT channel a conducting state. They also strengthen the proposal that, in the WT, some competitive antagonists may stabilize desensitized states. Finally, these observations may shed light on properties of other ion channels, in particular the glutamate receptors, which display multiple conductance levels associated with various pharmacological agents. PMID:1741378

  14. Cloning and mapping of the mouse {alpha}7-neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Orr-Urtreger, A.; Baldini, A.; Beaudet, A.L.

    1995-03-20

    We report the isolation of cDNA clones for the mouse {alpha}7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit (gene symbol Acra7), the only nicotinic receptor subunit known to bind a-bungarotoxin in mammalian brain. This gene may have relevance to nicotine sensitivity and to some electrophysiologic findings in schizophrenia. The mouse {alpha}7 subunit gene encodes a protein of 502 amino acids with substantial identity to the rat (99.6%), human (92.8%), and chicken (87.5%) amino acid sequences. The {alpha}7 gene was mapped to mouse chromosome 7 near the p locus with the following gene order from proximal to distal: Myod1-3.5 {+-}1.7 cM-Gas2-0.9 cM {+-} 0.9 cM-D7Mit70-1.8 {+-} 1.2 cM- Acra7-4.4 {+-}1.0 cM-Hras1-ps11/Igf1r/Snrp2a. The human gene was confirmed to map to the homologous region of human chromosome 15q13-q14. 26 refs., 3 figs.

  15. Autoradiographic localization of putative nicotinic receptors in the rat brain using sup 125 I-neuronal bungarotoxin

    SciTech Connect

    Schulz, D.W.; Loring, R.H.; Aizenman, E.; Zigmond, R.E. )

    1991-01-01

    Neuronal bungarotoxin (NBT), a snake venom neurotoxin, selectively blocks nicotinic receptors in many peripheral and central neuronal preparations. alpha-Bungarotoxin (alpha BT), on the other hand, a second toxin isolated from the venom of the same snake, is an ineffective nicotinic antagonist in most vertebrate neuronal preparations studied thus far. To examine central nicotinic receptors recognized by NBT, we have characterized the binding of 125I-labeled NBT (125I-NBT) to rat brain membranes and have mapped the distribution of 125I-NBT binding in brain sections using quantitative light microscopic autoradiography. The binding of 125I-NBT was found to be saturable, of high affinity, and heterogeneously distributed in the brain. Pharmacological studies suggested that more than one population of sites is labeled by 125I-NBT. For example, one component of 125I-NBT binding was also recognized by alpha BT, while a second component, not recognized by alpha BT, was recognized by the nicotinic agonist nicotine. The highest densities of these alpha BT-insensitive, nicotine-sensitive sites were found in the fasciculus retroflexus, the lateral geniculate nucleus, the medial terminal nucleus of the accessory optic tract, and the olivary pretectal nucleus. alpha BT-sensitive NBT binding sites were found in highest density in the lateral geniculate nucleus, the subthalamic nucleus, the dorsal tegmental nucleus, and the medial mammillary nucleus (lateral part). The number of brain regions with a high density of 125I-NBT binding sites, blocked either by alpha BT or by nicotine, is low when compared with results obtained using other approaches to studying the central distribution of nicotinic receptors, such as labeling with 3H-nicotine or labeling with cDNA probes to mRNAs coding for putative receptor subunits.

  16. Presynaptic α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors increase glutamate release and serotonin neuron excitability in the dorsal raphe nucleus.

    PubMed

    Garduño, Julieta; Galindo-Charles, Luis; Jiménez-Rodríguez, Javier; Galarraga, Elvira; Tapia, Dagoberto; Mihailescu, Stefan; Hernandez-Lopez, Salvador

    2012-10-24

    Several behavioral effects of nicotine are mediated by changes in serotonin (5-HT) release in brain areas that receive serotonergic afferents from the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN). In vitro experiments have demonstrated that nicotine increases the firing activity in the majority of DRN 5-HT neurons and that DRN contains nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) located at both somata and presynaptic elements. One of the most common presynaptic effects of nicotine is to increase glutamate release. Although DRN receives profuse glutamatergic afferents, the effect of nicotine on glutamate release in the DRN has not been studied in detail. Using whole-cell recording techniques, we investigated the effects of nicotine on the glutamatergic input to 5-HT DRN neurons in rat midbrain slices. Low nicotine concentrations, in the presence of bicuculline and tetrodotoxin (TTX), increased the frequency but did not change the amplitude of glutamate-induced EPSCs, recorded from identified 5-HT neurons. Nicotine-induced increase of glutamatergic EPSC frequency persisted 10-20 min after drug withdrawal. This nicotinic effect was mimicked by exogenous administration of acetylcholine (ACh) or inhibition of ACh metabolism. In addition, the nicotine-induced increase in EPSC frequency was abolished by blockade of α4β2 nAChRs, voltage-gated calcium channels, or intracellular calcium signaling but not by α7 nAChR antagonists. These data suggest that both nicotine and endogenous ACh can increase glutamate release through activation of presynaptic α4β2 but not α7 nAChRs in the DRN. The effect involves long-term changes in synaptic function, and it is dependent on voltage-gated calcium channels and presynaptic calcium stores. PMID:23100436

  17. Alterations of cortical pyramidal neurons in mice lacking high-affinity nicotinic receptors

    PubMed Central

    Ballesteros-Yáñez, Inmaculada; Benavides-Piccione, Ruth; Bourgeois, Jean-Pierre; Changeux, Jean-Pierre; DeFelipe, Javier

    2010-01-01

    The neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are allosteric membrane proteins involved in multiple cognitive processes, including attention, learning, and memory. The most abundant form of heterooligomeric nAChRs in the brain contains the β2- and α4- subunits and binds nicotinic agonists with high affinity. In the present study, we investigated in the mouse the consequences of the deletion of one of the nAChR components: the β2-subunit (β2−/−) on the microanatomy of cortical pyramidal cells. Using an intracellular injection method, complete basal dendritic arbors of 650 layer III pyramidal neurons were sampled from seven cortical fields, including primary sensory, motor, and associational areas, in both β2−/− and WT animals. We observed that the pyramidal cell phenotype shows significant quantitative differences among different cortical areas in mutant and WT mice. In WT mice, the density of dendritic spines was rather similar in all cortical fields, except in the prelimbic/infralimbic cortex, where it was significantly higher. In the absence of the β2-subunit, the most significant reduction in the density of spines took place in this high-order associational field. Our data suggest that the β2-subunit is involved in the dendritic morphogenesis of pyramidal neurons and, in particular, in the circuits that contribute to the high-order functional connectivity of the cerebral cortex. PMID:20534523

  18. Neuronal nicotinic receptors as brain targets for pharmacotherapy of drug addiction.

    PubMed

    Rahman, Shafiqur; López-Hernández, Gretchen Y; Corrigall, William A; Papke, Roger L

    2008-11-01

    Nicotine addiction and other forms of drug addiction continue to be significant public health problems in the United States and the rest of the world. Accumulated evidence indicates that brain nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are a heterogenous family of ion channels expressed in the various parts of the brain. A growing body of preclinical studies suggests that brain nAChRs are critical targets for the development of pharmacotherapies for nicotine and other drug addictions. In this review, we will discuss the nAChR subtypes, their function in response to endogenous brain transmitters, and how their functions are regulated in the presence of nicotine. Furthermore, we will discuss the role of nAChRs in mediating nicotine-induced addictive behavior in animal models. Additionally, we will provide an overview of the effects of nicotine and nicotinic compounds on the mesolimbic dopamine system, part of the reinforcement/reward circuitry of the brain, as an example of the neurochemical basis of nicotine addiction and other drug addictions. An appreciation of the complexity of nicotinic receptors and their regulation will be necessary for the development of nicotinic receptor modulators as potential pharmacotherapy for drug addiction. PMID:19128201

  19. Airway-related vagal preganglionic neurons express multiple nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits

    PubMed Central

    Dehkordi, Ozra; Kc, Prabha; Balan, Kannan V.; Haxhiu, Musa A.

    2007-01-01

    Nicotine acting centrally increases bronchomotor tone and airway secretion, suggesting that airway-related vagal preganglionic neurons (AVPNs) within the rostral nucleus ambiguus (rNA) express nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). In the present study, we examined the three main functionally characterized subtypes of nAChRs in the CNS, the α7 homomeric and α4β2 heteromeric receptors. First, we characterized the expression of these subunits at the message (mRNA) and protein levels in brain tissues taken from the rNA region, the site where AVPNs are located. In addition, double labeling fluorescent immunohistochemistry and confocal laser microscopy were used to define the presence of α7, α4, and β2 nAChRs on AVPNs that were retrogradely labeled with cholera toxin h subunit (CTb), injected into the upper lung lobe (n = 4) or extrathoracic trachea (n = 4). Our results revealed expression of all three studied subunits at mRNA and protein levels within the rNA region. Furthermore, virtually all identified AVPNs innervating intrapulmonary airways express α7 and α4 nAChR subunits. Similarly, a majority of labeled AVPNs projecting to extrathoracic trachea contain α7 and β2 subunits, but less than half of them show detectable α4 nAChR traits. These results suggest that AVPNs express three major nAChR subunits (α7, α4, and β2) that could assemble into functional homologous or heterologous pentameric receptors, mediating fast and sustained nicotinic effects on cholinergic outflow to the airways. PMID:16616705

  20. Otilonium: a potent blocker of neuronal nicotinic ACh receptors in bovine chromaffin cells.

    PubMed Central

    Gandía, L.; Villarroya, M.; Lara, B.; Olmos, V.; Gilabert, J. A.; López, M. G.; Martínez-Sierra, R.; Borges, R.; García, A. G.

    1996-01-01

    1. Otilonium, a clinically useful spasmolytic, behaves as a potent blocker of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChR) as well as a mild wide-spectrum Ca2+ channel blocker in bovine adrenal chromaffin cells. 2. 45Ca2+ uptake into chromaffin cells stimulated with high K+ (70 mM, 1 min) was blocked by otilonium with an IC50 of 7.6 microM. The drug inhibited the 45Ca2+ uptake stimulated by the nicotinic AChR agonist, dimethylphenylpiperazinium (DMPP) with a 79 fold higher potency (IC50 = 0.096 microM). 3. Whole-cell Ba2+ currents (IBa) through Ca2+ channels of voltage-clamped chromaffin cells were blocked by otilonium with an IC50 of 6.4 microM, very close to that of K(+)-evoked 45Ca2+ uptake. Blockade developed in 10-20 s, almost as a single step and was rapidly and almost fully reversible. 4. Whole-cell nicotinic AChR-mediated currents (250 ms pulses of 100 microM DMPP) applied at 30 s intervals were blocked by otilonium in a concentration-dependent manner, showing an IC50 of 0.36 microM. Blockade was induced in a step-wise manner. Wash out of otilonium allowed a slow recovery of the current, also in discrete steps. 5. In experiments with recordings in the same cells of whole-cell IDMPP, Na+ currents (INa) and Ca2+ currents (ICa), 1 microM otilonium blocked 87% IDMPP, 7% INa and 13% ICa. 6. Otilonium inhibited the K(+)-evoked catecholamine secretory response of superfused bovine chromaffin cells with an IC50 of 10 microM, very close to the IC50 for blockade of K(+)-induced 45Ca2+ uptake and IBa. 7. Otilonium inhibited the secretory responses induced by 10 s pulses of 50 microM DMPP with an IC50 of 7.4 nM. Hexamethonium blocked the DMPP-evoked responses with an IC50 of 29.8 microM, 4,000 fold higher than that of otilonium. 8. In conclusion, otilonium is a potent blocker of nicotinic AChR-mediated responses. The drugs also blocked various subtypes of neuronal voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels at a considerably lower potency. Na+ channels were unaffected by

  1. Determinants of zinc potentiation on the alpha4 subunit of neuronal nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Hsiao, Bernard; Mihalak, Karla B; Repicky, Sarah E; Everhart, Drew; Mederos, Ana H; Malhotra, Arun; Luetje, Charles W

    2006-01-01

    We have shown previously that the function of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors can be modulated by zinc. This modulation varies from potentiation to inhibition, depending on receptor subunit composition and zinc concentration, with the alpha4beta2 and alpha4beta4 receptors displaying the most dramatic potentiation. In this study, we used site-directed mutagenesis to identify glutamate 59 and histidine 162 on the rat alpha4 subunit as potential mediators of zinc potentiation. By modeling the extracellular domain of the receptor pentamer, we locate these residues to two subunit-subunit interfaces that alternate with the two acetylcholine-binding interfaces. Substitution of a cysteine at either position allows additional reduction of zinc potentiation upon treatment with the methanethiosulfonate reagents N-biotinoylaminoethyl methanethiosulfonate (MTSEA-biotin) and [2-(trimethylammonium)ethyl] methanethiosulfonate. Mutagenesis and methanethiosulfonate treatment are most effective at position 162, and the presence of zinc hinders the reaction of MTSEA-biotin with the substituted cysteine at this position, suggesting that alpha4His162 participates in forming a coordination site for zinc. Mutagenesis and methanethiosulfonate treatment are less effective at position 59, suggesting that whereas alpha4Glu59 may be near the zinc coordination site, it may not be participating in coordination of the zinc ion. It is noteworthy that the position of alpha4Glu59 within the neuronal nAChR is identical to that of a residue that lines the benzodiazepine-binding site on GABA(A) receptors. We suggest that the zinc potentiation sites on neuronal nAChRs are structurally and functionally similar to the benzodiazepine-binding sites on GABA(A) receptors. PMID:16189299

  2. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors containing the α6 subunit contribute to ethanol activation of ventral tegmental area dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Liwang; Zhao-Shea, Rubing; McIntosh, J. Michael; Tapper, Andrew R.

    2013-01-01

    Nicotine and alcohol are often co-abused suggesting a common mechanism of action may underlie their reinforcing properties. Both drugs acutely increase activity of ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopaminergic (DAergic) neurons, a phenomenon associated with reward behavior. Recent evidence indicates that nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), ligand-gated cation channels activated by ACh and nicotine, may contribute to ethanol-mediated activation of VTA DAergic neurons although the nAChR subtype(s) involved has not been fully elucidated. Here we show that expression and activation of nAChRs containing the α6 subunit contribute to ethanol-induced activation of VTA DAergic neurons. In wild-type (WT) mouse midbrain sections that contain the VTA, ethanol (50 or 100 mM) significantly increased firing frequency of DAergic neurons. In contrast, ethanol did not significantly increase activity of VTA DAergic neurons in mice that do not express CHRNA6, the gene encoding the α6 nAChR subunit (α6 knock-out (KO) mice). Ethanol-induced activity in WT slices was also reduced by pre-application of the α6 subtype-selective nAChR antagonist, α-conotoxin MII[E11A]. When co-applied, ethanol potentiated the response to ACh in WT DAergic neurons; whereas co-application of ACh and ethanol failed to significantly increase activity of DAergic neurons in α6 KO slices. Finally, pre-application of α-conotoxin MII[E11A] in WT slices reduced ethanol potentiation of ACh responses. Together our data indicate that α6-subunit containing nAChRs may contribute to ethanol activation of VTA DAergic neurons. These receptors are predominantly expressed in DAergic neurons and known to be critical for nicotine reinforcement, providing a potential common therapeutic molecular target to reduce nicotine and alcohol co-abuse. PMID:23811312

  3. The neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor {alpha}7 subunit gene: Cloning, mapping, structure, and targeting in mouse

    SciTech Connect

    Orr-Urtreger, A.; Baldini, A.; Beaudet, A.L.

    1994-09-01

    The neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor {alpha}7 subunit is a member of a family of ligand-gated ion channels, and is the only subunit know to bind {alpha}-bungarotoxin in mammalian brain. {alpha}-Bungarotoxin binding sites are known to be more abundant in the hippocampus of mouse strains that are particularly sensitive to nicotine-induced seizures. The {alpha}7 receptor is highly permeable to calcium, which could suggest a role in synaptic plasticity in the nervous system. Auditory gating deficiency, an abnormal response to a second auditory stimulus, is characteristic of schizophrenia. Mouse strains that exhibit a similar gating deficit have reduced hippocampal expression of the {alpha}7 subunit. We have cloned and sequenced the full length cDNA for the mouse {alpha}7 gene (Acra-7) and characterized its gene structure. The murine {alpha}7 shares amino acid identity of 99% and 93% with the rat and human {alpha}7 subunits, respectively. Using an interspecies backcross panel, the murine gene was mapped to chromosome 7 near the p locus, a region syntenic with human chromosome 15; the human gene (CHRNA7) was confirmed to map to 15q13-q14 by FISH. To generate a mouse {alpha}7 mutant by homologous recombination, we have constructed a replacement vector which will delete transmembrane domains II-IV and the cytoplasmic domain from the gene product. Recombinant embryonic stem (ES) cell clones were selected and used to develop mouse chimeras that are currently being bred to obtain germline transmission.

  4. Exon-intron structure of the human neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor {alpha}4 subunit (CHRNA4)

    SciTech Connect

    Steinlein, O.; Weiland, S.; Stoodt, J.; Propping, P.

    1996-03-01

    The human neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor {alpha}4 subunit gene (CHRNA4) is located in the candidate region for three different phenotypes: benign familial neonatal convulsions, autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy, and low-voltage EEG. Recently, a missense mutation in transmembrane domain 2 of CHRNA4 was found to be associated with autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy in one extended pedigree. We have determined the genomic organization of CHRNA4, which consists of six exons distributed over approximately 17 kb of genomic DNA. The nucleotide sequence obtained from the genomic regions adjacent to the exon boundaries enabled us to develop a set of primer pairs for PCR amplification of the complete coding region. The sequence analysis provides the basis for a comprehensive mutation screening of CHRNA4 in the above-mentioned phenotypes and possibly in other types of idopathic epilepsies. 29 refs., 3 figs., 1 tab.

  5. Allosteric modifiers of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: new methods, new opportunities.

    PubMed

    Moaddel, Ruin; Jozwiak, Krzysztof; Wainer, Irving W

    2007-09-01

    Allosteric, non-competitive inhibitors (NCIs) of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been shown to produce a wide variety of clinically relevant responses. Many of the observed effects are desired as the nAChR is the therapeutic target, while others are undesired consequences due to off-target binding at the nAChR. Thus, the determination of whether or not a lead drug candidate is an NCI should play an important role in drug discovery programs. However, the current experimental techniques used to identify NCIs are challenging, expensive, and time consuming. This review focuses on an alternative approach to the investigation of interactions between test compounds and nAChRs based upon liquid chromatographic stationary phases containing cellular fragments from cell lines expressing nAChRs. The development and validation of these phases as well as their use in drug discovery and pharmacophore modeling are discussed. PMID:17238157

  6. Evaluation of Ca2+ permeability of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in hypothalamic histaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Uteshev, Victor V.

    2010-01-01

    Hypothalamic histaminergic tuberomammillary (TM) neurons express nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) with kinetic and pharmacological properties resembling those of highly Ca2+ permeable α7 nAChRs. However, the Ca2+ permeability of TM nAChR channels has not been determined. To directly evaluate the Ca2+ permeability of TM nAChRs, patch-clamp recordings were conducted using non-cultured acutely dissociated TM neurons and external solutions containing low (2 mM) and high (20 mM) concentrations of Ca2+. A shift in the reversal potentials was determined from the current–voltage relationships and the permeability ratio, PCa/PNa, was estimated within the Goldman-Hodgkin-Katz constant field approximation. TM nAChRs were found to be highly Ca2+ permeable with the permeability ratio, PCa/PNa(nAChR) being ∼5.9 and the fractional Ca2+ current, Pf(nAChR) being ∼10.1% at −60 mV. As a positive control for the applied methods and analysis, the permeability ratio, PCa/PNa(NMDAR) being ∼8.3 and the fractional Ca2+ current, Pf(NMDAR) being ∼13.6% at −60 mV for NMDA receptors were determined using non-cultured acutely dissociated hippocampal pyramidal neurons and found similar to previously reported values. Therefore, these results demonstrate that native TM nAChRs are highly Ca2+ permeable, but ∼1.4 fold less permeable to Ca2+ than native hippocampal pyramidal NMDA receptors. PMID:20043042

  7. TC-1734: an orally active neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor modulator with antidepressant, neuroprotective and long-lasting cognitive effects.

    PubMed

    Gatto, Gregory J; Bohme, G Andrees; Caldwell, William S; Letchworth, Sharon R; Traina, Vincent M; Obinu, M Carmen; Laville, Michel; Reibaud, Michel; Pradier, Laurent; Dunbar, Geoffrey; Bencherif, Merouane

    2004-01-01

    The development of selective ligands targeting neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors to alleviate symptoms associated with neurodegenerative diseases presents the advantage of affecting multiple deficits that are the hallmarks of these pathologies. TC-1734 is an orally active novel neuronal nicotinic agonist with high selectivity for neuronal nicotinic receptors. Microdialysis studies indicate that TC-1734 enhances the release of acetylcholine from the cortex. TC-1734, by either acute or repeated administration, exhibits memory enhancing properties in rats and mice and is neuroprotective following excitotoxic insult in fetal rat brain in cultures and against alterations of synaptic transmission induced by deprivation of glucose and oxygen in hippocampal slices. At submaximal doses, TC-1734 produced additive cognitive effects when used in combination with tacrine or donepezil. Unlike (-)-nicotine, behavioral sensitization does not develop following repeated administration of TC-1734. Its pharmacokinetic (PK) profile (half-life of 2 h) contrasts with the long lasting improvement in working memory (18 h) demonstrating that cognitive improvement extends beyond the lifetime of the compound. The very low acute toxicity of TC-1734 and its receptor activity profile provides additional mechanistic basis for its suggested potential as a clinical candidate. TC-1734 was very well tolerated in acute and chronic oral toxicity studies in mice, rats and dogs. Phase I clinical trials demonstrated TC-1734's favorable pharmacokinetic and safety profile by acute oral administration at doses ranging from 2 to 320 mg. The bioavailability, pharmacological, pharmacokinetic, and safety profile of TC-1734 provides an example of a safe, potent and efficacious neuronal nicotinic modulator that holds promise for the management of the hallmark symptomatologies observed in dementia. PMID:15179444

  8. Introduced Amino Terminal Epitopes Can Reduce Surface Expression of Neuronal Nicotinic Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Bracamontes, John R.; Akk, Gustav; Steinbach, Joe Henry

    2016-01-01

    Epitopes accessible on the surface of intact cells are extremely valuable in studies of membrane proteins, allowing quantification and determination of the distribution of proteins as well as identification of cells expressing large numbers of proteins. However for many membrane proteins there are no suitable antibodies to native sequences, due to lack of availability, low affinity or lack of specificity. In these cases the use of an introduced epitope at specific sites in the protein of interest can often provide a suitable tool for studies. However, the introduction of the epitope sequence has the potential to affect protein expression, the assembly of multisubunit proteins or transport to the surface membrane. We find that surface expression of heteromeric neuronal nicotinic receptors containing the α4 and β4 subunits can be affected by introduced epitopes when inserted near the amino terminus of a subunit. The FLAG epitope greatly reduces surface expression when introduced into either α4 or β4 subunits, the V5 epitope has little effect when placed in either, while the Myc epitope reduces expression more when inserted into β4 than α4. These results indicate that the extreme amino terminal region is important for assembly of these receptors, and demonstrate that some widely used introduced epitopes may severely reduce surface expression. PMID:26963253

  9. The marine phycotoxin gymnodimine targets muscular and neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes with high affinity.

    PubMed

    Kharrat, Riadh; Servent, Denis; Girard, Emmanuelle; Ouanounou, Gilles; Amar, Muriel; Marrouchi, Riadh; Benoit, Evelyne; Molgó, Jordi

    2008-11-01

    Gymnodimines (GYMs) are phycotoxins exhibiting unusual structural features including a spirocyclic imine ring system and a trisubstituted tetrahydrofuran embedded within a 16-membered macrocycle. The toxic potential and the mechanism of action of GYM-A, highly purified from contaminated clams, have been assessed. GYM-A in isolated mouse phrenic hemidiaphragm preparations produced a concentration- and time-dependent block of twitch responses evoked by nerve stimulation, without affecting directly elicited muscle twitches, suggesting that it may block the muscle nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptor (nAChR). This was confirmed by the blockade of miniature endplate potentials and the recording of subthreshold endplate potentials in GYM-A paralyzed frog and mouse isolated neuromuscular preparations. Patch-clamp recordings in Xenopus skeletal myocytes revealed that nicotinic currents evoked by constant iontophoretical ACh pulses were blocked by GYM-A in a reversible manner. GYM-A also blocked, in a voltage-independent manner, homomeric human alpha7 nAChR expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Competition-binding assays confirmed that GYM-A is a powerful ligand interacting with muscle-type nAChR, heteropentameric alpha3beta2, alpha4beta2, and chimeric alpha7-5HT(3) neuronal nAChRs. Our data show for the first time that GYM-A broadly targets nAChRs with high affinity explaining the basis of its neurotoxicity, and also pave the way for designing specific tests for accurate GYM-A detection in shellfish samples. PMID:18990115

  10. A comparative study of the effects of the intravenous self-administration or subcutaneous minipump infusion of nicotine on the expression of brain neuronal nicotinic receptor subtypes.

    PubMed

    Moretti, Milena; Mugnaini, Manolo; Tessari, Michela; Zoli, Michele; Gaimarri, Annalisa; Manfredi, Irene; Pistillo, Francesco; Clementi, Francesco; Gotti, Cecilia

    2010-08-01

    Long-term nicotine exposure changes neuronal acetylcholine nicotinic receptor (nAChR) subtype expression in the brains of smokers and experimental animals. The aim of this study was to investigate nicotine-induced changes in nAChR expression in two models commonly used to describe the effects of nicotine in animals: operant (two-lever presses) intravenous self-administration (SA) and passive subcutaneous nicotine administration via an osmotic minipump (MP). In the MP group, alpha4beta2 nAChRs were up-regulated in all brain regions, alpha6beta2* nAChRs were down-regulated in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) and caudate-putamen, and alpha7 nAChRs were up-regulated in the caudal cerebral cortex (CCx); the up-regulation of alpha4beta2alpha5 nAChRs in the CCx was also suggested. In the SA group, alpha4beta2 up-regulation was lower and limited to the CCx and NAc; there were no detectable changes in alpha6beta2* or alpha7 nACRs. In the CCx of the MP rats, there was a close correlation between the increase in alpha4beta2 binding and alpha4 and beta2 subunit levels measured by means of Western blotting, demonstrating that the up-regulation was due to an increase in alpha4beta2 proteins. Western blotting also showed that the increase in the beta2 subunit exceeded that of the alpha4 subunit, suggesting that a change in alpha4beta2 stoichiometry may occur in vivo as has been shown in vitro. These results show that nicotine has an area-specific effect on receptor subtypes, regardless of its administration route, but the effect is quantitatively greater in the case of MP administration. PMID:20439469

  11. Bladder outlet obstruction causes up-regulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in bladder-projecting pelvic ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Chung, Hyun-Chul; Lee, Choong-Ku; Park, Kwang-Hwa; Jeong, Seong-Woo

    2015-03-30

    Pelvic ganglion (PG) neurons relay sympathetic and parasympathetic signals to the lower urinary tract, comprising the urinary bladder and bladder outlet, and are thus essential for both storage and voiding reflexes. Autonomic transmission is mediated by activation of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) in PG neurons. Previously, bladder outlet obstruction (BOO), secondary to benign prostatic hyperplasia, was found to increase soma sizes of bladder-projecting PG neurons. To date, however, it remains unknown whether these morphological changes are accompanied by functional plasticity in PG neurons. In the present study, we investigated whether BOO alters acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) transcript expression and current density in bladder PG neurons. Partial ligation of the rat urethra for six weeks induced detrusor overactivity (DO), as observed during cystometrical measurement. In rats exhibiting DO, membrane capacitance of parasympathetic bladder PG neurons was selectively increased. Real-time PCR analysis revealed that BOO enhanced the expression of the transcripts encoding the nAChR α3 and β4 subunits in PG neurons. Notably, BOO significantly increased ACh-evoked current density in parasympathetic bladder PG neurons, whereas no changes were observed in sympathetic bladder and parasympathetic penile PG neurons. In addition, other ligand-gated ionic currents were immune to BOO in bladder PG neurons. Taken together, these data suggest that BOO causes upregulation of nAChR in parasympathetic bladder PG neurons, which in turn may potentiate ganglionic transmission and contribute to the development of DO. PMID:25625357

  12. Neuronal nicotinic receptor agonists: a multi-approach development of the pharmacophore.

    PubMed

    Nicolotti, O; Pellegrini-Calace, M; Carrieri, A; Altomare, C; Centeno, N B; Sanz, F; Carotti, A

    2001-09-01

    Based on the results obtained with different automated computational approaches as applied to the study of eleven high-affinity agonists of the neuronal nicotine acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), belonging to different chemical classes, new relevant features were detected which complement the existing pharmacophores. Convergent results from DISCO (Distance Comparison), QXP (Quick Explore), Catalyst/HipHop, and MIPSIM (Molecular Interaction Potential Similarity) allowed us to identify and locate, in a well defined spatial arrangement, three geometrically independent key structural features: (i) a positively charged nitrogen atom for ionic or hydrogen bond interactions, (ii) a lone pair of the pyridine nitrogen or a specific lone pair of a carbonyl oxygen, as a hydrogen bond acceptor, and (iii) a centre of a hydrophobic area generally occupied by aliphatic cycles. The pharmacophore presented herein, along with predictive 2D and 3D QSAR models recently developed in our group, could represent valuable computational tools for the design of new nAChR agonists having therapeutical potential. PMID:11776295

  13. Nicotinic Transmission onto Layer 6 Cortical Neurons Relies on Synaptic Activation of Non-α7 Receptors.

    PubMed

    Hay, Y Audrey; Lambolez, Bertrand; Tricoire, Ludovic

    2016-06-01

    Nicotinic excitation in neocortex is mediated by low-affinity α7 receptors and by high-affinity α4β2 receptors. There is evidence that α7 receptors are synaptic, but it is unclear whether high-affinity receptors are activated by volume transmission or synaptic transmission. To address this issue, we characterized responses of excitatory layer 6 (L6) neurons to optogenetic release of acetylcholine (ACh) in cortical slices. L6 responses consisted in a slowly decaying α4β2 current and were devoid of α7 component. Evidence that these responses were mediated by synapses was 4-fold. 1) Channelrhodopsin-positive cholinergic varicosities made close appositions onto responsive neurons. 2) Inhibition of ACh degradation failed to alter onset kinetics and amplitude of currents. 3) Quasi-saturation of α4β2 receptors occurred upon ACh release. 4) Response kinetics were unchanged in low release probability conditions. Train stimulations increased amplitude and decay time of responses and these effects appeared to involve recruitment of extrasynaptic receptors. Finally, we found that the α5 subunit, known to be associated with α4β2 in L6, regulates short-term plasticity at L6 synapses. Our results are consistent with previous anatomical observations of widespread cholinergic synapses and suggest that a significant proportion of these small synapses operate via high-affinity nicotinic receptors. PMID:25934969

  14. Functional interactions between the SK2 channel and the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in enteric neurons of the guinea pig ileum.

    PubMed

    Nakajima, Hidemitsu; Goto, Hiroto; Azuma, Yasu-Taka; Fujita, Akikazu; Takeuchi, Tadayoshi

    2007-12-01

    The neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) plays a critical role in gastrointestinal function. The role of the small conductance Ca2+-activated K+ (SK) channel in ACh release was examined using myenteric plexus preparations of guinea pig ileum. Apamin, an inhibitor of the SK channel, significantly enhanced nicotine-induced ACh release, but neither electrical field stimulation- nor 5-hydroxytryptamine-induced ACh release, suggesting that SK channels might be selectively involved in the regulation of nicotine-induced ACh release. Therefore, we investigated the distribution of SK2 and SK3 subunits and the interaction between SK2 channels and nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChRs) in the guinea pig ileum. The immunoreactivity of SK2 subunits was located in enteric neuronal cells. Furthermore, SK2-immunoreactive cells stained with an antibody for choline acetyltransferase, a marker for cholinergic neurons, and with an antibody for the alpha3/5 subunits of nAChR. In contrast, immunoreactivity of SK3 subunits was not found in enteric neurons. A co-immunoprecipitation assay with Triton X-100-soluble membrane fractions prepared from the ileum revealed an association of the SK2 subunit with the alpha3/5 subunits of nAChR. These results suggest that SK2 channels negatively regulate the excitation of enteric neurons via functional interactions with nAChRs. PMID:17953675

  15. Cholinergic modulation of the medial prefrontal cortex: the role of nicotinic receptors in attention and regulation of neuronal activity

    PubMed Central

    Bloem, Bernard; Poorthuis, Rogier B.; Mansvelder, Huibert D.

    2014-01-01

    Acetylcholine (ACh) release in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) is crucial for normal cognitive performance. Despite the fact that many have studied how ACh affects neuronal processing in the mPFC and thereby influences attention behavior, there is still a lot unknown about how this occurs. Here we will review the evidence that cholinergic modulation of the mPFC plays a role in attention and we will summarize the current knowledge about the role between ACh receptors (AChRs) and behavior and how ACh receptor activation changes processing in the cortical microcircuitry. Recent evidence implicates fast phasic release of ACh in cue detection and attention. This review will focus mainly on the fast ionotropic nicotinic receptors and less on the metabotropic muscarinic receptors. Finally, we will review limitations of the existing studies and address how innovative technologies might push the field forward in order to gain understanding into the relation between ACh, neuronal activity and behavior. PMID:24653678

  16. Neuronal specificity of the alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor promoter develops during morphogenesis of the central nervous system.

    PubMed Central

    Matter-Sadzinski, L; Hernandez, M C; Roztocil, T; Ballivet, M; Matter, J M

    1992-01-01

    A transient transfection assay has been developed to analyse promoter activity in neuronal cells freshly dissociated from the chick central nervous system. The assay enabled us to identify cis-acting regulatory elements within the 5'-flanking region of the alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor gene. In differentiated retina, regulatory elements direct reporter gene expression to a small subset of neurons which has been identified as ganglion cells, i.e. to the population of neurons in which alpha 7 transcripts were localized by in situ hybridization. However, these promoter elements exhibit ubiquitous activity in undifferentiated neural cells and in mesodermal stem cells. Our study supports the idea that alpha 7 regulatory elements acquire their neuronal specificity in the course of embryogenesis. Images PMID:1425587

  17. Mydriasis in association with MMIHS in a female infant: evidence for involvement of the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Narayanan, M; Murphy, M S; Ainsworth, J R; Arul, G S

    2007-07-01

    We report a case of megacystis-microcolon-intestinal hypoperistalsis syndrome (MMIHS), occurring in association with mydriasis, in a female infant born to consanguineous Asian parents. This association has not previously been reported and is of interest because mydriasis has been found in a murine MMIHS model produced by knockout of the genes coding for the alpha3 subunit or the beta2 and beta4 subunits of the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. This may provide an important clue to the genetic basis of MMIHS in humans. PMID:17618899

  18. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists: pharmacophores, evolutionary QSAR and 3D-QSAR models.

    PubMed

    Nicolotti, Orazio; Altomare, Cosimo; Pellegrini-Calace, Marialuisa; Carotti, Angelo

    2004-01-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine ion channel receptors (nAChRs) exist as several subtypes and are involved in a variety of functions and disorders of the central nervous system (CNS), such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. The lack of reliable information on the 3D structure of nAChRs prompted us to focus efforts on pharmacophore and structure-affinity relationships (SAFIRs). The use of DISCO (DIStance COmparison) and Catalyst/HipHop led to the formulation of a pharmacophore that is made of three geometrically unrelated features: (i) an ammonium head involved in coulombic and/or H-bond interactions, (ii) a lone pair of a pyridine nitrogen or a carbonyl oxygen, as H-bond acceptor site, and (iii) a hydrophobic molecular region generally constituted by aliphatic cycles. The quantitative SAFIR (QSAFIR) study was carried out on about three hundred nicotinoid agonists, and coherent results were obtained from classical Hansch-type approach, 3D QSAFIRs, based on Comparative Molecular Field Analysis (CoMFA), and trade-off models generated by Multi-objective Genetic QSAR (MoQSAR), a novel evolutionary software that makes use of Genetic Programming (GP) and multi-objective optimization (MO). Within each congeneric series, Hansch-type equations revealed detrimental steric effects as the major factors modulating the receptor affinity, whereas CoMFA allowed us to merge progressively single-class models in a more global one, whose robustness was supported by crossvalidation, high prediction statistics and satisfactory predictions of the affinity data of a true external ligand set (r(2)(pred) = 0.796). Next, MoQSAR was used to analyze a data set of 58 highly active nicotinoids characterized by 56 descriptors, that are log P, MR and 54 low inter-correlated WHIM (Weighted Holistic Invariant Molecular) indices. Equivalent QSAFIR models, that represent different compromises between structural model complexity, fitting and internal model complexity, were found. Our attention was

  19. ICV STZ induced impairment in memory and neuronal mitochondrial function: A protective role of nicotinic receptor.

    PubMed

    Saxena, Gunjan; Patro, Ishan K; Nath, Chandishwar

    2011-10-10

    The present study was planned to evaluate the cholinergic influence on mitochondrial activity and neurodegeneration associated with impaired memory in intracerebroventricular (ICV) streptozotocin (STZ) treated rats. STZ (3mg/kg), administered ICV twice with an interval of 48h between the two doses, showed significant impairment in spatial memory tested by water maze test 14 days after first dose without altering blood glucose level and locomotor activity. Animals were sacrificed on 21st day of ICV administration. STZ significantly increased malondialdehyde (MDA), reactive oxygen species (ROS), Ca(2+) ion influx, caspase-3 activity and decreased glutathione (GSH) level. Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors tacrine and donepezil (5mg/kg, PO) pretreatment significantly prevented STZ induced memory deficit, oxidative stress, Ca(2+) influx and caspase-3 activity. Carbachol, a muscarinic cholinergic agonist (0.01mg/kg, SC) did not show any significant effect on ROS generation, Ca(2+) ion influx and caspase-3 activity. While nicotinic cholinergic agonist, nicotine, significantly attenuated ICV STZ induced mitochondrial dysfunction and caspase-3 activity. The results indicate that instead of muscarinic receptors nicotinic receptors may be involved in neuroprotection by maintaining mitochondrial functions. PMID:21620901

  20. Transcriptional regulation by nicotine in dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Henley, Beverley M.; Williams, Brian A.; Srinivasan, Rahul; Cohen, Bruce N.; Xiao, Cheng; Mackey, Elisha D.W.; Wold, Barbara J.; Lester, Henry A.

    2013-01-01

    Dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) degenerate in Parkinson’s disease. These neurons robustly express several nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtypes. Smoking appears to be neuroprotective for Parkinson’s disease but the mechanism is unknown. To determine whether chronic nicotine-induced changes in gene expression contribute to the neuroprotective effects of smoking, we develop methods to measure the effect of prolonged nicotine exposure on the SNc neuronal transcriptome in an unbiased manner. Twenty neurons were collected using laser-capture microscopy and transcriptional changes were assessed using RNA deep sequencing. These results are the first whole-transcriptome analyses of chronic nicotine treatment in SNc neurons. Overall, 129 genes were significantly regulated: 67 upregulated, 62 downregulated. Nicotine-induced relief of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress has been postulated as a potential mechanism for the neuroprotective effects of smoking. Chronic nicotine did not significantly affect the expression of ER stress-related genes, nor of dopamine-related or nAChR genes, but it did modulate expression of 129 genes that could be relevant to the neuroprotective effects of smoking, including genes involved in (1) the ubiquitin–proteasome pathway, (2) cell cycle regulation, (3) chromatin modification, and (4) DNA binding and RNA regulation. We also report preliminary transcriptome data for single-cell dopaminergic and GABAergic neurons isolated from midbrain cultures. These novel techniques will facilitate advances in understanding the mechanisms taking place at the cellular level and may have applications elsewhere in the fields of neuroscience and molecular biology. The results give an emerging picture of the role of nicotine on the SNc and on dopaminergic neurons. PMID:23939186

  1. Analysis of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α4β2 activation at the single-channel level.

    PubMed

    Carignano, Camila; Barila, Esteban Pablo; Spitzmaul, Guillermo

    2016-09-01

    The neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α4β2 forms pentameric proteins with two alternate stoichiometries. The high-sensitivity receptor is related to (α4)2(β2)3 stoichiometry while the low-sensitivity receptor to (α4)3(β2)2 stoichiometry. Both subtypes share two binding sites at the α4((+))/β2((-)) interface with high affinity for agonists. (α4)3(β2)2 has an additional binding site at the α4((+))/α4((-)) interface with low affinity for agonists. We investigated activation kinetics of both receptor subtypes by patch-clamp recordings of single-channel activity in the presence of several concentrations of acetylcholine (0.5 to 300μM). We used kinetic software to fit these data with kinetic models. We found that the high-sensitivity subtype correlates with the low-conductance channel (g-70=29pS) and does not activate with high efficacy. On the contrary, the low-sensitivity subtype correlated with a high-conductance channel (g-70=44pS) and exhibited higher activation efficacy. Opening events of individual nAChRs at high agonist concentrations occurred in clusters, which allowed us to determine kinetic constants for the activation of the triliganded receptor. Our kinetic modeling identified an intermediate state, between resting and open conformation of the receptor. Binding of the third molecule increases the efficacy of receptor activation by favoring the transition between resting and intermediate state around 18 times. The low rate for this transition in the diliganded receptor explains the action of acetylcholine as partial agonist when it binds to the high-affinity sites. The presence of the third binding site emerges as a potent modulator of nicotinic receptor α4β2 activation which may display different functions depending on agonist concentration. PMID:27233449

  2. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated responses in medial vestibular and prepositus hypoglossi nuclei neurons showing distinct neurotransmitter phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yue; Yanagawa, Yuchio; Saito, Yasuhiko

    2016-06-01

    Cholinergic transmission in both the medial vestibular nucleus (MVN) and prepositus hypoglossi nucleus (PHN) plays an important role in horizontal eye movements. We previously demonstrated that the current responses mediated via nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) were larger than those mediated via muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs) in cholinergic MVN and PHN neurons that project to the cerebellum. In this study, to clarify the predominant nAChR responses and the expression patterns of nAChRs in MVN and PHN neurons that exhibit distinct neurotransmitter phenotypes, we identified cholinergic, inhibitory, and glutamatergic neurons using specific transgenic rats and investigated current responses to the application of acetylcholine (ACh) using whole cell recordings in brain stem slices. ACh application induced larger nAChR-mediated currents than mAChR-mediated currents in every neuronal phenotype. In the presence of an mAChR antagonist, we found three types of nAChR-mediated currents that exhibited different rise and decay times and designated these as fast (F)-, slow (S)-, and fast and slow (FS)-type currents. F-type currents were the predominant response in inhibitory MVN neurons, whereas S-type currents were observed in the majority of glutamatergic MVN and PHN neurons. No dominant response type was observed in cholinergic neurons. Pharmacological analyses revealed that the F-, S-, and FS-type currents were mainly mediated by α7, non-α7, and both α7 and non-α7 nAChRs, respectively. These findings suggest that cholinergic responses in the major neuronal populations of the MVN and PHN are predominantly mediated by nAChRs and that the expression of α7 and non-α7 nAChRs differ among the neuronal phenotypes. PMID:26936981

  3. Nicotine recruits glutamate receptors to postsynaptic sites.

    PubMed

    Duan, Jing-Jing; Lozada, Adrian F; Gou, Chen-Yu; Xu, Jing; Chen, Yuan; Berg, Darwin K

    2015-09-01

    Cholinergic neurons project throughout the nervous system and activate nicotinic receptors to modulate synaptic function in ways that shape higher order brain function. The acute effects of nicotinic signaling on long-term synaptic plasticity have been well-characterized. Less well understood is how chronic exposure to low levels of nicotine, such as those encountered by habitual smokers, can alter neural connections to promote addiction and other lasting behavioral effects. We show here that chronic exposure of hippocampal neurons in culture to low levels of nicotine recruits AMPA and NMDA receptors to the cell surface and sequesters them at postsynaptic sites. The receptors include GluA2-containing AMPA receptors, which are responsible for most of the excitatory postsynaptic current mediated by AMPA receptors on the neurons, and include NMDA receptors containing GluN1 and GluN2B subunits. Moreover, we find that the nicotine treatment also increases expression of the presynaptic component synapsin 1 and arranges it in puncta juxtaposed to the additional AMPA and NMDA receptor puncta, suggestive of increases in synaptic contacts. Consistent with increased synaptic input, we find that the nicotine treatment leads to an increase in the excitatory postsynaptic currents mediated by AMPA and NMDA receptors. Further, the increases skew the ratio of excitatory-to-inhibitory input that the cell receives, and this holds both for pyramidal neurons and inhibitory neurons in the hippocampal CA1 region. The GluN2B-containing NMDA receptor redistribution at synapses is associated with a significant increase in GluN2B phosphorylation at Tyr1472, a site known to prevent GluN2B endocytosis. These results suggest that chronic exposure to low levels of nicotine not only alters functional connections but also is likely to change excitability levels across networks. Further, it may increase the propensity for synaptic plasticity, given the increase in synaptic NMDA receptors. PMID

  4. Desensitizing and non-desensitizing subtypes of alpha-bungarotoxin-sensitive nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in cockroach neurons.

    PubMed

    Salgado, Vincent L; Saar, Raimund

    2004-10-01

    Two alpha-bungarotoxin-sensitive nicotinic receptor subtypes in cockroach neurons are identified as desensitizing (nAChD), selectively inhibitable with 100 nM imidacloprid, and non-desensitizing (nAChN), selectively inhibitable with 100 pM methyllycaconitine. Although the desensitization rate of nAChD receptors is highly variable, pharmacology is largely independent of desensitization rate. Because desensitized states tightly bind agonists, nAChD receptors are potently inhibited by neonicotinoids and specifically measured in radiolabeled imidacloprid binding assays. However, they are not usually detected in binding assays with radiolabeled alpha-bungarotoxin, which has a Kd for the resting state of 21 nM, but binds poorly to desensitized states often present in binding assays. In contrast, nAChN receptors are specifically measured in binding assays with radiolabeled alpha-bungarotoxin, which binds them with a Kd of 1.3 nM. nAChN receptors are activated by neonicotinoids at micromolar concentrations, and allosterically by spinosyn A, with an EC50 of 27 nM. Spinosyn A weakly antagonizes nAChD receptors -23% at 10 microM. The roles of the two nAChR subtypes in insecticide poisoning are discussed. PMID:15518655

  5. Nicotinic Receptors in Neurodegeneration

    PubMed Central

    Posadas, Inmaculada; López-Hernández, Beatriz; Ceña, Valentín

    2013-01-01

    Many studies have focused on expanding our knowledge of the structure and diversity of peripheral and central nicotinic receptors. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are members of the Cys-loop superfamily of pentameric ligand-gated ion channels, which include GABA (A and C), serotonin, and glycine receptors. Currently, 9 alpha (α2-α10) and 3 beta (β2-β4) subunits have been identified in the central nervous system (CNS), and these subunits assemble to form a variety of functional nAChRs. The pentameric combination of several alpha and beta subunits leads to a great number of nicotinic receptors that vary in their properties, including their sensitivity to nicotine, permeability to calcium and propensity to desensitize. In the CNS, nAChRs play crucial roles in modulating presynaptic, postsynaptic, and extrasynaptic signaling, and have been found to be involved in a complex range of CNS disorders including Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), schizophrenia, Tourette´s syndrome, anxiety, depression and epilepsy. Therefore, there is growing interest in the development of drugs that modulate nAChR functions with optimal benefits and minimal adverse effects. The present review describes the main characteristics of nAChRs in the CNS and focuses on the various compounds that have been tested and are currently in phase I and phase II trials for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases including PD, AD and age-associated memory and mild cognitive impairment. PMID:24179465

  6. Nicotinic receptors in addiction pathways.

    PubMed

    Leslie, Frances M; Mojica, Celina Y; Reynaga, Daisy D

    2013-04-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are ligand-gated ion channels that consist of pentameric combinations of α and β subunits. These receptors are widely distributed throughout the brain and are highly expressed in addiction circuitry. The role of nAChRs in regulating neuronal activity and motivated behavior is complex and varies both in and among brain regions. The rich diversity of central nAChRs has hampered the characterization of their structure and function with use of classic pharmacological techniques. However, recent molecular approaches using null mutant mice with specific regional lentiviral re-expression, in combination with neuroanatomical and electrophysiological techniques, have allowed the elucidation of the influence of different nAChR types on neuronal circuit activity and behavior. This review will address the influence of nAChRs on limbic dopamine circuitry and the medial habenula-interpeduncular nucleus complex, which are critical mediators of reinforced behavior. Characterization of the mechanisms underlying regulation of addiction pathways by endogenous cholinergic transmission and by nicotine may lead to the identification of new therapeutic targets for treating tobacco dependence and other addictions. PMID:23247824

  7. Neonicotinoids target distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and neurons, leading to differential risks to bumblebees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moffat, Christopher; Buckland, Stephen T.; Samson, Andrew J.; McArthur, Robin; Chamosa Pino, Victor; Bollan, Karen A.; Huang, Jeffrey T.-J.; Connolly, Christopher N.

    2016-04-01

    There is growing concern over the risk to bee populations from neonicotinoid insecticides and the long-term consequences of reduced numbers of insect pollinators to essential ecosystem services and food security. Our knowledge of the risk of neonicotinoids to bees is based on studies of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and these findings are extrapolated to clothianidin based on its higher potency at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This study addresses the specificity and consequences of all three neonicotinoids to determine their relative risk to bumblebees at field-relevant levels (2.5 ppb). We find compound-specific effects at all levels (individual cells, bees and whole colonies in semi-field conditions). Imidacloprid and clothianidin display distinct, overlapping, abilities to stimulate Kenyon cells, indicating the potential to differentially influence bumblebee behavior. Bee immobility was induced only by imidacloprid, and an increased vulnerability to clothianidin toxicity only occurred following chronic exposure to clothianidin or thiamethoxam. At the whole colony level, only thiamethoxam altered the sex ratio (more males present) and only clothianidin increased queen production. Finally, both imidacloprid and thiamethoxam caused deficits in colony strength, while no detrimental effects of clothianidin were observed. Given these findings, neonicotinoid risk needs to be considered independently for each compound and target species.

  8. Neonicotinoids target distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and neurons, leading to differential risks to bumblebees.

    PubMed

    Moffat, Christopher; Buckland, Stephen T; Samson, Andrew J; McArthur, Robin; Chamosa Pino, Victor; Bollan, Karen A; Huang, Jeffrey T-J; Connolly, Christopher N

    2016-01-01

    There is growing concern over the risk to bee populations from neonicotinoid insecticides and the long-term consequences of reduced numbers of insect pollinators to essential ecosystem services and food security. Our knowledge of the risk of neonicotinoids to bees is based on studies of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and these findings are extrapolated to clothianidin based on its higher potency at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This study addresses the specificity and consequences of all three neonicotinoids to determine their relative risk to bumblebees at field-relevant levels (2.5 ppb). We find compound-specific effects at all levels (individual cells, bees and whole colonies in semi-field conditions). Imidacloprid and clothianidin display distinct, overlapping, abilities to stimulate Kenyon cells, indicating the potential to differentially influence bumblebee behavior. Bee immobility was induced only by imidacloprid, and an increased vulnerability to clothianidin toxicity only occurred following chronic exposure to clothianidin or thiamethoxam. At the whole colony level, only thiamethoxam altered the sex ratio (more males present) and only clothianidin increased queen production. Finally, both imidacloprid and thiamethoxam caused deficits in colony strength, while no detrimental effects of clothianidin were observed. Given these findings, neonicotinoid risk needs to be considered independently for each compound and target species. PMID:27124107

  9. Neonicotinoids target distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and neurons, leading to differential risks to bumblebees

    PubMed Central

    Moffat, Christopher; Buckland, Stephen T.; Samson, Andrew J.; McArthur, Robin; Chamosa Pino, Victor; Bollan, Karen A.; Huang, Jeffrey T.-J.; Connolly, Christopher N.

    2016-01-01

    There is growing concern over the risk to bee populations from neonicotinoid insecticides and the long-term consequences of reduced numbers of insect pollinators to essential ecosystem services and food security. Our knowledge of the risk of neonicotinoids to bees is based on studies of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and these findings are extrapolated to clothianidin based on its higher potency at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This study addresses the specificity and consequences of all three neonicotinoids to determine their relative risk to bumblebees at field-relevant levels (2.5 ppb). We find compound-specific effects at all levels (individual cells, bees and whole colonies in semi-field conditions). Imidacloprid and clothianidin display distinct, overlapping, abilities to stimulate Kenyon cells, indicating the potential to differentially influence bumblebee behavior. Bee immobility was induced only by imidacloprid, and an increased vulnerability to clothianidin toxicity only occurred following chronic exposure to clothianidin or thiamethoxam. At the whole colony level, only thiamethoxam altered the sex ratio (more males present) and only clothianidin increased queen production. Finally, both imidacloprid and thiamethoxam caused deficits in colony strength, while no detrimental effects of clothianidin were observed. Given these findings, neonicotinoid risk needs to be considered independently for each compound and target species. PMID:27124107

  10. Propofol and AZD3043 Inhibit Adult Muscle and Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Expressed in Xenopus Oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Jonsson Fagerlund, Malin; Krupp, Johannes; Dabrowski, Michael A.

    2016-01-01

    Propofol is a widely used general anaesthetic with muscle relaxant properties. Similarly as propofol, the new general anaesthetic AZD3043 targets the GABAA receptor for its anaesthetic effects, but the interaction with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) has not been investigated. Notably, there is a gap of knowledge about the interaction between propofol and the nAChRs found in the adult neuromuscular junction. The objective was to evaluate whether propofol or AZD3043 interact with the α1β1δε, α3β2, or α7 nAChR subtypes that can be found in the neuromuscular junction and if there are any differences in affinity for those subtypes between propofol and AZD3043. Human nAChR subtypes α1β1δε, α3β2, and α7 were expressed into Xenopus oocytes and studied with an automated voltage-clamp. Propofol and AZD3043 inhibited ACh-induced currents in all of the nAChRs studied with inhibitory concentrations higher than those needed for general anaesthesia. AZD3043 was a more potent inhibitor at the adult muscle nAChR subtype compared to propofol. Propofol and AZD3043 inhibit nAChR subtypes that can be found in the adult NMJ in concentrations higher than needed for general anaesthesia. This finding needs to be evaluated in an in vitro nerve-muscle preparation and suggests one possible explanation for the muscle relaxant effect of propofol seen during higher doses. PMID:26861354

  11. Water-soluble LYNX1 Residues Important for Interaction with Muscle-type and/or Neuronal Nicotinic Receptors*

    PubMed Central

    Lyukmanova, Ekaterina N.; Shulepko, Mikhail A.; Buldakova, Svetlana L.; Kasheverov, Igor E.; Shenkarev, Zakhar O.; Reshetnikov, Roman V.; Filkin, Sergey Y.; Kudryavtsev, Denis S.; Ojomoko, Lucy O.; Kryukova, Elena V.; Dolgikh, Dmitry A.; Kirpichnikov, Mikhail P.; Bregestovski, Piotr D.; Tsetlin, Victor I.

    2013-01-01

    Human LYNX1, belonging to the Ly6/neurotoxin family of three-finger proteins, is membrane-tethered with a glycosylphosphatidylinositol anchor and modulates the activity of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). Recent preparation of LYNX1 as an individual protein in the form of water-soluble domain lacking glycosylphosphatidylinositol anchor (ws-LYNX1; Lyukmanova, E. N., Shenkarev, Z. O., Shulepko, M. A., Mineev, K. S., D'Hoedt, D., Kasheverov, I. E., Filkin, S. Y., Krivolapova, A. P., Janickova, H., Dolezal, V., Dolgikh, D. A., Arseniev, A. S., Bertrand, D., Tsetlin, V. I., and Kirpichnikov, M. P. (2011) NMR structure and action on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors of water-soluble domain of human LYNX1. J. Biol. Chem. 286, 10618–10627) revealed the attachment at the agonist-binding site in the acetylcholine-binding protein (AChBP) and muscle nAChR but outside it, in the neuronal nAChRs. Here, we obtained a series of ws-LYNX1 mutants (T35A, P36A, T37A, R38A, K40A, Y54A, Y57A, K59A) and examined by radioligand analysis or patch clamp technique their interaction with the AChBP, Torpedo californica nAChR and chimeric receptor composed of the α7 nAChR extracellular ligand-binding domain and the transmembrane domain of α1 glycine receptor (α7-GlyR). Against AChBP, there was either no change in activity (T35A, T37A), slight decrease (K40A, K59A), and even enhancement for the rest mutants (most pronounced for P36A and R38A). With both receptors, many mutants lost inhibitory activity, but the increased inhibition was observed for P36A at α7-GlyR. Thus, there are subtype-specific and common ws-LYNX1 residues recognizing distinct targets. Because ws-LYNX1 was inactive against glycine receptor, its “non-classical” binding sites on α7 nAChR should be within the extracellular domain. Micromolar affinities and fast washout rates measured for ws-LYNX1 and its mutants are in contrast to nanomolar affinities and irreversibility of binding for α-bungarotoxin and

  12. Enhanced Sensitivity of α3β4 Nicotinic Receptors in Enteric Neurons after Long-Term Morphine: Implication for Opioid-Induced Constipation.

    PubMed

    Gade, Aravind R; Kang, Minho; Khan, Fayez; Grider, John R; Damaj, M Imad; Dewey, William L; Akbarali, Hamid I

    2016-06-01

    Opioid-induced constipation is a major side effect that persists with long-term opioid use. Previous studies demonstrated that nicotine-induced contractions are enhanced after long-term morphine exposure in guinea pig ileum. In the present study, we examined whether the increased sensitivity to nicotine could be observed in single enteric neurons after long-term morphine exposure, determined the subunits in mouse enteric neurons, and examined the effect of nicotine in reversing opioid-induced constipation. Nicotine (0.03-1 mM) dose-dependently induced inward currents from a holding potential of -60 mV in isolated single enteric neurons from the mouse ileum. The amplitude of the currents, but not the potency to nicotine, was significantly increased in neurons receiving long-term (16-24 h) but not short-term (10 min) exposure to morphine. Quantitative mRNA analysis showed that nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit expression in the mouse ileum was α3 ≥ β2 > β4 > α5 > α4 > β3 > α6. Nicotine-induced currents were obtained in neurons from α7, β2, α5, and α6 knockout mice. The currents were, however, inhibited by mecamylamine (10 μM) and the α3β4 blocker α-conotoxin AuIB (3 μM), suggesting that nicotine-induced currents were mediated by the α3β4 subtype of nAChRs on enteric neurons. Conversely, NS3861, a partial agonist at α3β4 nAChR, enhanced fecal pellet expulsion in a dose-dependent manner in mice that received long-term, but not short-term, morphine treatment. Overall, our findings suggest that the efficacy of nAChR agonists on enteric neurons is enhanced after long-term morphine exposure, and activation of the α3β4 subtype of nAChR reverses chronic, but not acute, morphine-induced constipation. PMID:27068812

  13. Effect of Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Genes (CHRN) on Longitudinal Cigarettes per Day in Adolescents and Young Adults

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Introduction: Few studies have sought to identify specific genetic markers associated with cigarettes per day (CPD) during adolescence and young adulthood, the period of greatest vulnerability for the development of nicotine dependence. Methods: We used a longitudinal design to investigate the effect of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (CHRN) subunit genes on CPD from 15 to 21 years of age in young smokers of European descent (N = 439, 59% female). The number of CPD typically smoked during the previous 30 days was self-reported. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from CHRN genes were genotyped using DNA extracted from saliva samples collected at the 5-year assessment. Mixed-model analyses of SNP effects were computed across age at the time of assessment using log-transformed CPD as the phenotype. Data from the 1000 Genomes Project were used to clarify the architecture of CHRN genes to inform SNP selection and interpretation of results. Results: CPD was associated with a CHRNB3A6 region tagged by rs2304297, with CHRNA5A3B4 haplotype C (tagged by rs569207), and with the CHRNA2 SNP rs2271920, ps < .004. The reliability of single-SNP associations was supported by the correspondence between a more extensive set of SNP signals and the underlying genetic architecture. The 3 signals identified in this study appear to make independent contributions to CPD, and their combined effect accounts for 5.5% of the variance in log-transformed CPD. Conclusions: Level of CPD during adolescence and young adulthood is associated with CHRNB3A6, CHRNA5A3B4, and CHRNA2. PMID:23943838

  14. CRF neurons in the ventral tegmental area control the aversive effects of nicotine withdrawal and promote escalation of nicotine intake

    PubMed Central

    Grieder, Taryn E.; Herman, Melissa A.; Contet, Candice; Tan, Laura A.; Vargas-Perez, Hector; Cohen, Ami; Chwalek, Michal; Maal-Bared, Geith; Freiling, John; Schlosburg, Joel E; Clarke, Laura; Crawford, Elena; Koebel, Pascale; Canonigo, Vez; Sanna, Pietro; Tapper, Andrew; Roberto, Marisa; Kieffer, Brigitte L.; Sawchenko, Paul E.; Koob, George F.; van der Kooy, Derek; George, Olivier

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Dopaminergic neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) are well known for their role in mediating the positive reinforcing effects of drugs of abuse. Here, we identify in rodents and humans a population of VTA dopamine neurons co-expressing corticotropin releasing factor (CRF). We provide further evidence in rodents that chronic nicotine exposure upregulates CRF mRNA in dopaminergic neurons of the posterior VTA, activates local CRF1 receptors, and blocks nicotine-induced activation of transient GABAergic input to dopaminergic neurons. Local downregulation of CRF mRNA and specific pharmacological blockade of CRF1 receptors in the VTA reversed the effect of nicotine on GABAergic input to dopaminergic neurons, prevented the aversive effects of nicotine withdrawal, and limited the escalation of nicotine intake. These results link the brain reward and stress systems within the same brain region in signaling the negative motivational effects of nicotine withdrawal. PMID:25402857

  15. Age-related hearing loss: GABA, nicotinic acetylcholine and NMDA receptor expression changes in spiral ganglion neurons of the mouse.

    PubMed

    Tang, X; Zhu, X; Ding, B; Walton, J P; Frisina, R D; Su, J

    2014-02-14

    Age-related hearing loss - presbycusis - is the number one communication disorder and most prevalent neurodegenerative condition of our aged population. Although speech understanding in background noise is quite difficult for those with presbycusis, there are currently no biomedical treatments to prevent, delay or reverse this condition. A better understanding of the cochlear mechanisms underlying presbycusis will help lead to future treatments. Objectives of the present study were to investigate GABAA receptor subunit α1, nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptor subunit β2, and N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor subunit NR1 mRNA and protein expression changes in spiral ganglion neurons (SGN) of the CBA/CaJ mouse cochlea, that occur in age-related hearing loss, utilizing quantitative immunohistochemistry and semi-quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) techniques. We found that auditory brainstem response (ABR) thresholds shifted over 40dB from 3 to 48kHz in old mice compared to young adults. DPOAE thresholds also shifted over 40dB from 6 to 49kHz in old mice, and their amplitudes were significantly decreased or absent in the same frequency range. SGN density decreased with age in basal, middle and apical turns, and SGN density of the basal turn declined the most. A positive correlation was observed between SGN density and ABR wave 1amplitude. mRNA and protein expression of GABAAR α1 and AChR β2 decreased with age in SGNs in the old mouse cochlea. mRNA and protein expression of NMDAR NR1 increased with age in SGNs of the old mice. These findings demonstrate that there are functionally-relevant age-related changes of GABAAR, nAChR, NMDAR expression in CBA mouse SGNs reflecting their degeneration, which may be related to functional changes in cochlear synaptic transmission with age, suggesting biological mechanisms for peripheral age-related hearing loss. PMID:24316061

  16. Nicotinic Receptor Antagonists as Treatments for Nicotine Abuse

    PubMed Central

    Crooks, Peter A.; Bardo, Michael T.; Dwoskin, Linda P.

    2014-01-01

    Despite the proven efficacy of current pharmacotherapies for tobacco dependence, relapse rates continue to be high, indicating that novel medications are needed. Currently, several smoking cessation agents are available, including varenicline (Chantix®), bupropion (Zyban®), and cytisine (Tabex®). Varenicline and cytisine are partial agonists at the α4β2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR). Bupropion is an antidepressant but is also an antagonist at α3β2* ganglionic nAChRs. The rewarding effects of nicotine are mediated, in part, by nicotine-evoked dopamine (DA) release leading to sensitization, which is associated with repeated nicotine administration and nicotine addiction. Receptor antagonists that selectivity target central nAChR subtypes mediating nicotine-evoked DA release should have efficacy as tobacco use cessation agents with the therapeutic advantage of a limited side-effect profile. While α-conotoxin MII (α-CtxMII)-insensitive nAChRs (e.g., α4β2*) contribute to nicotine-evoked DA release, these nAChRs are widely distributed in the brain, and inhibition of these receptors may lead to nonselective and untoward effects. In contrast, α-CtxMII-sensitive nAChRs mediating nicotine-evoked DA release offer an advantage as targets for smoking cessation, due to their more restricted localization primarily to dopaminergic neurons. Small drug-like molecules that are selective antagonists at α-CtxMII-sensitive nAChR subtypes that contain α6 and β2 subunits have now been identified. Early research identified a variety of quaternary ammonium analogs that were potent and selective antagonists at nAChRs mediating nicotine-evoked DA release. More recent data have shown that novel, non-quaternary bis-1,2,5,6-tetrahydropyridine analogs potently inhibit (IC50<1 nM) nicotine-evoked DA release in vitro by acting as antagonists at α-CtxMII-sensitive nAChR subtypes; these compounds also decrease NIC self-administration in rats. PMID:24484986

  17. The Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors α4* and α6* Differentially Modulate Dopamine Release in Mouse Striatal Slices

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, Erin L.; Yoshikami, Doju; McIntosh, J. Michael

    2008-01-01

    Striatal dopamine plays a major role in the regulation of motor coordination and in the processing of salient information. We used voltammetry to monitor dopamine-release evoked by electrical stimulation in striatal slices, where interneurons continuously release acetylcholine. Use of the α6-selective antagonist α-conotoxin MII[E11A] and α4 knockout mice enabled identification of two populations of dopaminergic fibers. The first population had a low action potential threshold, and action potential-evoked dopamine-release from these fibers was modulated by α6. The second population had a higher action potential threshold, and only α4(non-α6) modulated action potential-evoked dopamine-release. Striatal dopaminergic neurons fire in both tonic and phasic patterns. When stimuli were applied in a train to mimic phasic firing, more dopamine-released was observed in α4 knockout vs. wildtype mice. Furthermore, block of α4(non-α6), but not of α6, increased dopamine release evoked by a train. These results indicate that there are different classes of striatal dopaminergic fibers that express different subtypes of nicotinic receptors. PMID:18248619

  18. Activation and desensitization of peripheral muscle and neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by selected, naturally-occurring pyridine alkaloids

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Teratogenic alkaloids can cause developmental defects due to inhibition of fetal movement that results from desensitization of fetal muscletype nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). We investigated the ability of two known teratogens, the piperidinyl-pyridine anabasine and its 1,2-dehydropiper...

  19. Loop 2 of Ophiophagus hannah toxin b binds with neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and enhances intracranial drug delivery.

    PubMed

    Zhan, Changyou; Yan, Zhiqiang; Xie, Cao; Lu, Weiyue

    2010-12-01

    Three-finger snake neurotoxins have been widely investigated for their high binding affinities with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), which are widely expressed in the central nervous system including the blood-brain barrier and thus mediate intracranial drug delivery. The loop 2 segments of three-finger snake neurotoxins are considered as the binding domain with nAChRs, and thus, they may have the potential to enhance drug or drug delivery system intracranial transport. In the present work, binding of the synthetic peptides to the neuronal nAChRs was assessed by measuring their ability to inhibit the binding of (125)I-α-bungarotoxin to the receptor. The loop 2 segment of Ophiophagus hannah toxin b (KC2S) showed high binding affinity, and the competitive binding IC(50) value was 32.51 nM. Furthermore, the brain targeting efficiency of KC2S had been investigated in vitro and in vivo. The specific uptake by brain capillary endothelial cells (BCECs) demonstrated that KC2S could be endocytosized after binding with nAChRs. In vivo, the qualitative and quantitative biodistribution results of fluorescent dyes (DiR or coumarin-6) indicated that KC2S modified poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(lactic acid) micelles (KC2S-PEG-PLA micelles) could enhance intracranial drug delivery. Furthermore, intravenous treatment with paclitaxel-encapsulated KC2S-PEG-PLA micelles (KC2S-PEG-PLA-PTX micelles) afforded robust inhibition of intracranial glioblastoma. The median survival time of KC2S-PEG-PLA-PTX-micelle-treated mice (47.5 days) was significantly longer than that of mice treated by mPEG-PLA-PTX micelles (41.5 days), Taxol (38.5 days), or saline (34 days). Compared with the short peptide derived from rabies virus glycoprotein (RVG29) that has been previously reported as an excellent brain targeting ligand, KC2S has a similar binding affinity with neuronal nAChRs but fewer amino acid residues. Thus, we concluded that the loop 2 segment of Ophiophagus hannah toxin b could bind

  20. Mutations in the channel domain of a neuronal nicotinic receptor convert ion selectivity from cationic to anionic.

    PubMed

    Galzi, J L; Devillers-Thiéry, A; Hussy, N; Bertrand, S; Changeux, J P; Bertrand, D

    1992-10-01

    Introduction by site-directed mutagenesis of three amino acids from the MII segment of glycine or gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAA) receptors into the MII segment of alpha 7 nicotinic receptor was sufficient to convert a cation-selective channel into an anion-selective channel gated by acetylcholine. A critical mutation was the insertion of an uncharged residue at the amino-terminal end of MII, stressing the importance of protein geometrical constraints on ion selectivity. PMID:1383829

  1. Cholinergic modulation of dopamine pathways through nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    de Kloet, Sybren F; Mansvelder, Huibert D; De Vries, Taco J

    2015-10-15

    Nicotine addiction is highly prevalent in current society and is often comorbid with other diseases. In the central nervous system, nicotine acts as an agonist for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and its effects depend on location and receptor composition. Although nicotinic receptors are found in most brain regions, many studies on addiction have focused on the mesolimbic system and its reported behavioral correlates such as reward processing and reinforcement learning. Profound modulatory cholinergic input from the pedunculopontine and laterodorsal tegmentum to dopaminergic midbrain nuclei as well as local cholinergic interneuron projections to dopamine neuron axons in the striatum may play a major role in the effects of nicotine. Moreover, an indirect mesocorticolimbic feedback loop involving the medial prefrontal cortex may be involved in behavioral characteristics of nicotine addiction. Therefore, this review will highlight current understanding of the effects of nicotine on the function of mesolimbic and mesocortical dopamine projections in the mesocorticolimbic circuit. PMID:26208783

  2. Molecular Mechanisms of Cross-inhibition Between Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors and P2X Receptors in Myenteric Neurons and HEK-293 cells

    PubMed Central

    Decker, Dima A.; Galligan, James J.

    2010-01-01

    Background P2X2 and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) mediate fast synaptic excitation in the enteric nervous system. P2X receptors and nAChRs are functionally linked. This study examined the mechanisms responsible for interactions between P2X2 and α3β4subunit-containing nAChRs. Methods The function of P2X2 and α3β4 nAChRs expressed by HEK-293 cells and guinea pig ileum myenteric neurons in culture was studied using whole-cell patch clamp techniques. Results In HEK-293 cells expressing α3β4 nAChRs and P2X2 receptors, co-application of ATP and ACh caused inward currents that were 56 ± 7% of the current that should occur if these channels functioned independently (P < 0.05, n = 9); we call this interaction cross-inhibition. Cross-inhibition did not occur in HEK-293 cells expressing α3β4 nAChRs and a C-terminal tail truncated P2X2 receptor (P2X2TR)(P >0.05, n = 8). Intracellular application of the C-terminal tail of the P2X2 receptor blocked nAChR-P2X receptor cross-inhibition in HEK-293 cells and myenteric neurons. In the absence of ATP, P2X2 receptors constitutively inhibited nAChR currents in HEK-293 cells expressing both receptors. Constitutive inhibition did not occur in HEK-293 cells expressing α3β4 nAChRs transfected with P2X2TR. Currents caused by low (≤30 μM), but not high (≥100 μM) concentrations of ATP in cells expressing P2X2 receptors were inhibited by co-expression with α3β4 nAChRs. Conclusions The C-terminal tail of P2X2 receptors mediates cross-inhibition between α3β4 nAChR-P2X2 receptors. The closed state of P2X2 receptors and nAChRs can also cause cross inhibition. These interactions may modulate transmission at enteric synapses that use ATP and acetylcholine as co-transmitters. PMID:20426799

  3. Nicotine inhibits potassium currents in Aplysia bag cell neurons.

    PubMed

    White, Sean H; Sturgeon, Raymond M; Magoski, Neil S

    2016-06-01

    Acetylcholine and the archetypal cholinergic agonist, nicotine, are typically associated with the opening of ionotropic receptors. In the bag cell neurons, which govern the reproductive behavior of the marine snail, Aplysia californica, there are two cholinergic responses: a relatively large acetylcholine-induced current and a relatively small nicotine-induced current. Both currents are readily apparent at resting membrane potential and result from the opening of distinct ionotropic receptors. We now report a separate current response elicited by applying nicotine to cultured bag cell neurons under whole cell voltage-clamp. This current was ostensibly inward, best resolved at depolarized voltages, presented a noncooperative dose-response with a half-maximal concentration near 1.5 mM, and associated with a decrease in membrane conductance. The unique nicotine-evoked response was not altered by intracellular perfusion with the G protein blocker GDPβS or exposure to classical nicotinic antagonists but was occluded by replacing intracellular K(+) with Cs(+) Consistent with an underlying mechanism of direct inhibition of one or more K(+) channels, nicotine was found to rapidly reduce the fast-inactivating A-type K(+) current as well as both components of the delayed-rectifier K(+) current. Finally, nicotine increased bag cell neuron excitability, which manifested as reduction in spike threshold, greater action potential height and width, and markedly more spiking to continuous depolarizing current injection. In contrast to conventional transient activation of nicotinic ionotropic receptors, block of K(+) channels could represent a nonstandard means for nicotine to profoundly alter the electrical properties of neurons over prolonged periods of time. PMID:26864763

  4. Role of α5-containing nicotinic receptors in neuropathic pain and response to nicotine.

    PubMed

    Xanthos, Dimitris N; Beiersdorf, Johannes W; Thrun, Ariane; Ianosi, Bogdan; Orr-Urtreger, Avi; Huck, Sigismund; Scholze, Petra

    2015-08-01

    Nicotinic receptors in the central nervous system (nAChRs) are known to play important roles in pain processing and modulate behavioral responses to analgesic drugs, including nicotine. The presence of the α5-neuronal nicotinic accessory subunit in the nicotinic receptor complex is increasingly understood to modulate reward and aversive states, addiction, and possibly pathological pain. In the current study, using α5-knockout (KO) mice and subunit-specific antibodies, we assess the role of α5-containing neuronal nicotinic receptors in neuropathic pain and in the analgesic response to nicotine. After chronic constriction injury (CCI) or partial sciatic nerve ligation (PSNL), no differences in mechanical, heat, or cold hyperalgesia were found in wild-type (WT) versus α5-KO littermate mice. The number of α5-containing nAChRs was decreased (rather than increased) after CCI in the spinal cord and in the thalamus. Nevertheless, thermal analgesic response to nicotine was marginally reduced in CCI α5-KO mice at 4 days after CCI, but not at later timepoints or after PSNL. Interestingly, upon daily intermittent nicotine injections in unoperated mice, WT animals developed tolerance to nicotine-induced analgesia to a larger extent than α5-KO mice. Our results suggest that α5-containing nAChRs mediate analgesic tolerance to nicotine but do not play a major role in neuropathic pain. PMID:25725336

  5. Transmembrane potential polarization, calcium influx, and receptor conformational state modulate the sensitivity of the imidacloprid-insensitive neuronal insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptor to neonicotinoid insecticides.

    PubMed

    Bodereau-Dubois, Béatrice; List, Olivier; Calas-List, Delphine; Marques, Olivier; Communal, Pierre-Yves; Thany, Steeve H; Lapied, Bruno

    2012-05-01

    Neonicotinoid insecticides act selectively on insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Recent studies revealed that their efficiency was altered by the phosphorylation/dephosphorylation process and the intracellular signaling pathway involved in the regulation of nAChRs. Using whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology adapted for dissociated cockroach dorsal unpaired median (DUM) neurons, we demonstrated that intracellular factors involved in the regulation of nAChR function modulated neonicotinoid sensitivity. DUM neurons were known to express two α-bungarotoxin-insensitive nAChR subtypes: nAChR1 and nAChR2. Whereas nAChR1 was sensitive to imidacloprid, nAChR2 was insensitive to this insecticide. Here, we demonstrated that, like nicotine, acetamiprid and clothianidin, other types of neonicotinoid insecticides, acted as agonists on the nAChR2 subtype. Using acetamiprid, we revealed that both steady-state depolarization and hyperpolarization affected nAChR2 sensitivity. The measurement of the input membrane resistance indicated that change in the acetamiprid-induced agonist activity was related to the receptor conformational state. Using cadmium chloride, ω-conotoxin GVIA, and (R,S)-(3,4-dihydro-6,7-dimethoxy-isoquinoline-1-yl)-2-phenyl-N,N-di-acetamide (LOE 908), we found that inhibition of calcium influx through high voltage-activated calcium channels and transient receptor potential γ (TRPγ) activated by both depolarization and hyperpolarization increased nAChR2 sensitivity to acetamiprid. Finally, using N-(6-aminohexyl)-5-chloro-1-naphthalenesulfonamide hydrochloride (W7), forskolin, and cAMP, we demonstrated that adenylyl cyclase sensitive to the calcium/calmodulin complex regulated internal cAMP concentration, which in turn modulated TRPγ function and nAChR2 sensitivity to acetamiprid. Similar TRPγ-induced modulatory effects were also obtained when clothianidin was tested. These findings bring insights into the signaling pathway modulating

  6. Mutations in the channel domain alter desensitization of a neuronal nicotinic receptor.

    PubMed

    Revah, F; Bertrand, D; Galzi, J L; Devillers-Thiéry, A; Mulle, C; Hussy, N; Bertrand, S; Ballivet, M; Changeux, J P

    1991-10-31

    A variety of ligand-gated ion channels undergo a fast activation process after the rapid application of agonist and also a slower transition towards desensitized or inactivated closed channel states when exposure to agonist is prolonged. Desensitization involves at least two distinct closed states in the acetylcholine receptor, each with an affinity for agonists higher than those of the resting or active conformations. Here we investigate how structural elements could be involved in the desensitization of the acetylcholine-gated ion channel from the chick brain alpha-bungarotoxin sensitive homo-oligomeric alpha 7 receptor, using site-directed mutagenesis and expression in Xenopus oocytes. Mutations of the highly conserved leucine 247 residue from the uncharged MII segment of alpha 7 suppress inhibition by the open-channel blocker QX-222, indicating that this residue, like others from MII, faces the lumen of the channel. But, unexpectedly, the same mutations decrease the rate of desensitization of the response, increase the apparent affinity for acetylcholine and abolish current rectification. Moreover, unlike wild-type alpha 7, which has channels with a single conductance level, the leucine-to-threonine mutant has an additional conducting state active at low acetylcholine concentrations. It is possible that mutation of Leu 247 renders conductive one of the high-affinity desensitized states of the receptor. PMID:1719423

  7. Activation and Desensitization of Peripheral Muscle and Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors by Selected, Naturally-Occurring Pyridine Alkaloids.

    PubMed

    Green, Benedict T; Lee, Stephen T; Welch, Kevin D; Cook, Daniel; Kem, William R

    2016-01-01

    Teratogenic alkaloids can cause developmental defects due to the inhibition of fetal movement that results from desensitization of fetal muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). We investigated the ability of two known teratogens, the piperidinyl-pyridine anabasine and its 1,2-dehydropiperidinyl analog anabaseine, to activate and desensitize peripheral nAChRs expressed in TE-671 and SH-SY5Y cells. Activation-concentration response curves for each alkaloid were obtained in the same multi-well plate. To measure rapid desensitization, cells were first exposed to five potentially-desensitizing concentrations of each alkaloid in log10 molar increments from 10 nM to 100 µM and then to a fixed concentration of acetylcholine (ACh), which alone produces near-maximal activation. The fifty percent desensitization concentration (DC50) was calculated from the alkaloid concentration-ACh response curve. Agonist fast desensitization potency was predicted by the agonist potency measured in the initial response. Anabaseine was a more potent desensitizer than anabasine. Relative to anabaseine, nicotine was more potent to autonomic nAChRs, but less potent to the fetal neuromuscular nAChRs. Our experiments have demonstrated that anabaseine is more effective at desensitizing fetal muscle-type nAChRs than anabasine or nicotine and, thus, it is predicted to be more teratogenic. PMID:27384586

  8. Activation and Desensitization of Peripheral Muscle and Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors by Selected, Naturally-Occurring Pyridine Alkaloids

    PubMed Central

    Green, Benedict T.; Lee, Stephen T.; Welch, Kevin D.; Cook, Daniel; Kem, William R.

    2016-01-01

    Teratogenic alkaloids can cause developmental defects due to the inhibition of fetal movement that results from desensitization of fetal muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). We investigated the ability of two known teratogens, the piperidinyl-pyridine anabasine and its 1,2-dehydropiperidinyl analog anabaseine, to activate and desensitize peripheral nAChRs expressed in TE-671 and SH-SY5Y cells. Activation-concentration response curves for each alkaloid were obtained in the same multi-well plate. To measure rapid desensitization, cells were first exposed to five potentially-desensitizing concentrations of each alkaloid in log10 molar increments from 10 nM to 100 µM and then to a fixed concentration of acetylcholine (ACh), which alone produces near-maximal activation. The fifty percent desensitization concentration (DC50) was calculated from the alkaloid concentration-ACh response curve. Agonist fast desensitization potency was predicted by the agonist potency measured in the initial response. Anabaseine was a more potent desensitizer than anabasine. Relative to anabaseine, nicotine was more potent to autonomic nAChRs, but less potent to the fetal neuromuscular nAChRs. Our experiments have demonstrated that anabaseine is more effective at desensitizing fetal muscle-type nAChRs than anabasine or nicotine and, thus, it is predicted to be more teratogenic. PMID:27384586

  9. The Sensory Impact of Nicotine on Noradrenergic and Dopaminergic Neurons of the Nicotine Reward - Addiction Neurocircuitry

    PubMed Central

    Rose, Jed E; Dehkordi, Ozra; Manaye, Kebreten F; Millis, Richard M; Cianaki, Salman Ameri; Jayam-Trouth, Annapurni

    2016-01-01

    The sensory experience of smoking is a key component of nicotine addiction known to result, in part, from stimulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) at peripheral sensory nerve endings. Such stimulation of nAChRs is followed by activation of neurons at multiple sites in the mesocorticolimbic reward pathways. However, the neurochemical profiles of CNS cells that mediate the peripheral sensory impact of nicotine remain unknown. In the present study in mice, we first used c-Fos immunohistochemistry to identify CNS cells stimulated by nicotine (NIC, 40 μg/kg, IP) and by a peripherally-acting analog of nicotine, nicotine pyrrolidine methiodide (NIC-PM, 30 μg/kg, IP). Sequential double-labelling was then performed to determine whether noradrenergic and dopaminergic neurons of the nicotine reward-addiction circuitry were primary targets of NIC and NIC-PM. Double-labelling of NIC and/or NIC-PM activated c-Fos immunoreactive cells with tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) showed no apparent c-Fos expression by the dopaminergic cells of the ventral tegmental area (VTA). With the exception of sparse numbers of TH immunoreactive D11 cells, dopamine-containing neurons in other areas of the reward-addiction circuitry, namely periaqueductal gray, and dorsal raphe, were also devoid of c-Fos immunoreactivity. Noradrenergic neurons of locus coeruleus (LC), known to innervate VTA, were activated by both NIC and NIC-PM. These results demonstrate that noradrenergic neurons of LC are among the first structures that are stimulated by single acute IP injection of NIC and NIC-PM. Dopaminergic neurons of VTA and other CNS sites, did not respond to acute IP administration of NIC or NIC-PM by induction of c-Fos. PMID:27347434

  10. α4α6β2* Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Activation on Ventral Tegmental Area Dopamine Neurons Is Sufficient to Stimulate a Depolarizing Conductance and Enhance Surface AMPA Receptor Function

    PubMed Central

    Engle, Staci E.; Shih, Pei-Yu; McIntosh, J. Michael

    2013-01-01

    Tobacco addiction is a serious threat to public health in the United States and abroad, and development of new therapeutic approaches is a major priority. Nicotine activates and/or desensitizes nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) throughout the brain. nAChRs in ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons are crucial for the rewarding and reinforcing properties of nicotine in rodents, suggesting that they may be key mediators of nicotine’s action in humans. However, it is unknown which nAChR subtypes are sufficient to activate these neurons. To test the hypothesis that nAChRs containing α6 subunits are sufficient to activate VTA DA neurons, we studied mice expressing hypersensitive, gain-of-function α6 nAChRs (α6L9′S mice). In voltage-clamp recordings in brain slices from adult mice, 100 nM nicotine was sufficient to elicit inward currents in VTA DA neurons via α6β2* nAChRs. In addition, we found that low concentrations of nicotine could act selectively through α6β2* nAChRs to enhance the function of 2-amino-3-(3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazol-4-yl)propanoic acid (AMPA) receptors on the surface of these cells. In contrast, α6β2* activation did not enhance N-methyl-d-aspartic acid receptor function. Finally, AMPA receptor (AMPAR) function was not similarly enhanced in brain slices from α6L9′S mice lacking α4 nAChR subunits, suggesting that α4α6β2* nAChRs are important for enhancing AMPAR function in VTA DA neurons. Together, these data suggest that activation of α4α6β2* nAChRs in VTA DA neurons is sufficient to support the initiation of cellular changes that play a role in addiction to nicotine. α4α6β2* nAChRs may be a promising target for future smoking cessation pharmacotherapy. PMID:23788655

  11. Modulation of nicotinic ACh-, GABAA- and 5-HT3-receptor functions by external H-7, a protein kinase inhibitor, in rat sensory neurones

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Hong-Zhen; Li, Zhi-Wang

    1997-01-01

    The effects of external H-7, a potent protein kinase inhibitor, on the responses mediated by γ-aminobutyric acid A type (GABAA)-, nicotinic acetylcholine (nicotinic ACh)-, ionotropic 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT3)-, adenosine 5′-triphosphate (ATP)-, N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)- and kainate (KA)-receptors were studied in freshly dissociated rat dorsal root ganglion neurone by use of whole cell patch-clamp technique. External H-7 (1–1000 μM) produced a reversible, dose-dependent inhibition of whole cell currents activated by GABA, ACh and 5-HT. Whole-cell currents evoked by ATP, 2-methylthio-ATP, NMDA and KA were insensitive to external H-7. External H-7 shifted the dose-response curve of GABA-activated currents downward without changing the EC50 significantly (from 15.0±4.0 μM to 18.0±5.0 μM). The maximum response to GABA was depressed by 34.0±5.3%. This inhibitory action of H-7 was voltage-independent. Intracellular application of H-7 (20 μM), cyclic AMP (1 mM) and BAPTA (10 mM) could not reverse the H-7 inhibition of GABA-activated currents. The results suggest that external H-7 selectively and allosterically modulates the functions of GABAA-, nicotine ACh- and 5-HT3 receptors via a common conserved site in the external domain of these receptors. PMID:9401786

  12. Prostate stem cell antigen is an endogenous lynx1-like prototoxin that antagonizes alpha7 containing nicotinic receptors and prevents programmed cell death of parasympathetic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hruska, Martin; Keefe, Julie; Wert, David; Tekinay, Ayse Begum; Hulce, Jonathan J.; Ibanez-Tallon, Ines; Nishi, Rae

    2010-01-01

    Vertebrate α–bungarotoxin-like molecules of the Ly-6 super family have been implicated as balancers of activity and survival in the adult nervous system. To determine whether a member of this family could be involved in the development of the avian ciliary ganglion, we identified 6 Gallus genes by their homology in structure to mouse lynx1 and lynx2. One of these genes, an ortholog of prostate stem cell antigen (PSCA), is barely detectable at embryonic day 8, prior to neuronal cell loss in the ciliary ganglion, but increases over 100-fold as the number of neurons begins to decline between E9 and E14. PSCA is highly expressed in chicken and mouse telencephalon and peripheral ganglia and correlates with expression of α7-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7-nAChRs). Misexpressing PSCA prior to cell death in the ciliary ganglion blocks α7-nAChR activation by nicotine and rescues the choroid subpopulation from dying. Thus, PSCA, a molecule previously identified as a marker of prostate cancer, is a member of the Ly-6 neurotoxin-like family in the nervous system, and is likely to play a role as a modulator of α7 signaling induced cell death during development. PMID:19940180

  13. Nicotine evokes kinetic tremor by activating the inferior olive via α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Kunisawa, Naofumi; Iha, Higor A; Shimizu, Saki; Tokudome, Kentaro; Mukai, Takahiro; Kinboshi, Masato; Serikawa, Tadao; Ohno, Yukihiro

    2016-11-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptors are implicated in the pathogenesis of movement disorders (e.g., tremor) and epilepsy. Here, we performed behavioral and immunohistochemical studies using mice and rats to elucidate the mechanisms underlying nicotine-induced tremor. Treatments of animals with nicotine (0.5-2mg/kg, i.p.) elicited kinetic tremor, which was completely suppressed by the nACh receptor antagonist mecamylamine (MEC). The specific α7 nACh receptor antagonist methyllycaconitine (MLA) also inhibited nicotine-induced tremor, whereas the α4β2 nACh antagonist dihydro-β-erythroidine (DHβE) or the peripheral α3β4 nACh antagonist hexamethonium showed no effects. Mapping analysis of Fos protein expression, a biological marker of neural excitation, revealed that a tremorgenic dose (1mg/kg) of nicotine region-specifically elevated Fos expression in the piriform cortex (PirC), medial habenula, solitary nucleus and inferior olive (IO) among 44 brain regions examined. In addition, similarly to the tremor responses, nicotine-induced Fos expression in the PirC and IO was selectively antagonized by MLA, but not by DHβE. Furthermore, an electrical lesioning of the IO, but not the PirC, significantly suppressed the induction of nicotine tremor. The present results suggest that nicotine elicits kinetic tremor in rodents by activating the IO neurons via α7 nACh receptors. PMID:27506652

  14. Neuroanatomical and neuropharmacological approaches to postictal antinociception-related prosencephalic neurons: the role of muscarinic and nicotinic cholinergic receptors.

    PubMed

    de Freitas, Renato Leonardo; Bolognesi, Luana Iacovelo; Twardowschy, André; Corrêa, Fernando Morgan Aguiar; Sibson, Nicola R; Coimbra, Norberto Cysne

    2013-05-01

    Several studies have suggested the involvement of the hippocampus in the elaboration of epilepsy. There is evidence that suggests the hippocampus plays an important role in the affective and motivational components of nociceptive perception. However, the exact nature of this involvement remains unclear. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the role of muscarinic and nicotinic cholinergic receptors in the dorsal hippocampus (dH) in the organization of postictal analgesia. In a neuroanatomical study, afferent connections were found from the somatosensory cortex, the medial septal area, the lateral septal area, the diagonal band of Broca, and the dentate gyrus to the dH; all these areas have been suggested to modulate convulsive activity. Outputs to the dH were also identified from the linear raphe nucleus, the median raphe nucleus (MdRN), the dorsal raphe nucleus, and the locus coeruleus. All these structures comprise the endogenous pain modulatory system and may be involved either in postictal pronociception or antinociception that is commonly reported by epileptic patients. dH-pretreatment with cobalt chloride (1.0 mmol/L CoCl2/0.2 μL) to transiently inhibit local synapses decreased postictal analgesia 10 min after the end of seizures. Pretreatment of the dH with either atropine or mecamylamine (1.0 μg/0.2 μL) attenuated the postictal antinociception 30 min after seizures, while the higher dose (5.0 μg/0.2 μL) decreased postictal analgesia immediately after the end of seizures. These findings suggest that the dH exerts a critical role in the organization of postictal analgesia and that muscarinic and nicotinic cholinergic receptor-mediated mechanisms in the dH are involved in the elaboration of antinociceptive processes induced by generalized tonic-clonic seizures. PMID:23785660

  15. Neuroanatomical and neuropharmacological approaches to postictal antinociception-related prosencephalic neurons: the role of muscarinic and nicotinic cholinergic receptors

    PubMed Central

    de Freitas, Renato Leonardo; Bolognesi, Luana Iacovelo; Twardowschy, André; Corrêa, Fernando Morgan Aguiar; Sibson, Nicola R; Coimbra, Norberto Cysne

    2013-01-01

    Several studies have suggested the involvement of the hippocampus in the elaboration of epilepsy. There is evidence that suggests the hippocampus plays an important role in the affective and motivational components of nociceptive perception. However, the exact nature of this involvement remains unclear. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the role of muscarinic and nicotinic cholinergic receptors in the dorsal hippocampus (dH) in the organization of postictal analgesia. In a neuroanatomical study, afferent connections were found from the somatosensory cortex, the medial septal area, the lateral septal area, the diagonal band of Broca, and the dentate gyrus to the dH; all these areas have been suggested to modulate convulsive activity. Outputs to the dH were also identified from the linear raphe nucleus, the median raphe nucleus (MdRN), the dorsal raphe nucleus, and the locus coeruleus. All these structures comprise the endogenous pain modulatory system and may be involved either in postictal pronociception or antinociception that is commonly reported by epileptic patients. dH-pretreatment with cobalt chloride (1.0 mmol/L CoCl2/0.2 μL) to transiently inhibit local synapses decreased postictal analgesia 10 min after the end of seizures. Pretreatment of the dH with either atropine or mecamylamine (1.0 μg/0.2 μL) attenuated the postictal antinociception 30 min after seizures, while the higher dose (5.0 μg/0.2 μL) decreased postictal analgesia immediately after the end of seizures. These findings suggest that the dH exerts a critical role in the organization of postictal analgesia and that muscarinic and nicotinic cholinergic receptor-mediated mechanisms in the dH are involved in the elaboration of antinociceptive processes induced by generalized tonic-clonic seizures. PMID:23785660

  16. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and cancer

    PubMed Central

    DANG, NINGNING; MENG, XIANGUANG; SONG, HAIYAN

    2016-01-01

    Nicotine, the primary addictive constituent of cigarettes, is believed to contribute to cancer promotion and progression through the activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), which are membrane ligand-gated cation channels. nAChRs activation can be triggered by the neurotransmitter Ach, or certain other biological compounds, such as nicotine. In recent years, genome-wide association studies have indicated that allelic variation in the α5-α3-β4 nAChR cluster on chromosome 15q24-15q25.1 is associated with lung cancer risk. The role of nAChRs in other types of cancer has also been reported. The present review highlights the role of nAChRs in types of human cancer. PMID:27123240

  17. Nitrosamines as nicotinic receptor ligands.

    PubMed

    Schuller, Hildegard M

    2007-05-30

    Nitrosamines are carcinogens formed in the mammalian organism from amine precursors contained in food, beverages, cosmetics and drugs. The potent carcinogen, NNK, and the weaker carcinogen, NNN, are nitrosamines formed from nicotine. Metabolites of the nitrosamines react with DNA to form adducts responsible for genotoxic effects. We have identified NNK as a high affinity agonist for the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (alpha7nAChR) whereas NNN bound with high affinity to epibatidine-sensitive nAChRs. Diethylnitrosamine (DEN) bound to both receptors but with lower affinity. High levels of the alpha7nAChR were expressed in human small cell lung cancer (SCLC) cell lines and in hamster pulmonary neuroendocrine cells (PNECs), which serve as a model for the cell of origin of human SCLC. Exposure of SCLC or PNECs to NNK or nicotine increased expression of the alpha7nAChR and caused influx of Ca(2+), activation of PKC, Raf-1, ERK1/2, and c-myc, resulting in the stimulation of cell proliferation. Signaling via the alpha7nAChR was enhanced when cells were maintained in an environment of 10-15% CO(2) similar to that in the diseased lung. Hamsters with hyperoxia-induced pulmonary fibrosis developed neuroendocrine lung carcinomas similar to human SCLC when treated with NNK, DEN, or nicotine. The development of the NNK-induced tumors was prevented by green tea or theophylline. The beta-adrenergic receptor agonist, isoproterenol or theophylline blocked NNK-induced cell proliferation in vitro. NNK and nicotine-induced hyperactivity of the alpha7nAChR/RAF/ERK1/2 pathway thus appears to play a crucial role in the development of SCLC in smokers and could be targeted for cancer prevention. PMID:17459420

  18. alpha4/7-conotoxin Lp1.1 is a novel antagonist of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Peng, Can; Han, Yuhong; Sanders, Tanya; Chew, Geoffrey; Liu, Jing; Hawrot, Edward; Chi, Chengwu; Wang, Chunguang

    2008-10-01

    Cone snails comprise approximately 700 species of venomous molluscs which have evolved the ability to generate multiple toxins with varied and exquisite selectivity. alpha-Conotoxin is a powerful tool for defining the composition and function of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors which play a crucial role in excitatory neurotransmission and are important targets for drugs and insecticides. An alpha4/7 conotoxin, Lp1.1, originally identified by cDNA and genomic DNA cloning from Conus leopardus, was found devoid of the highly conserved Pro residue in the first intercysteine loop. To further study this toxin, alpha-Lp1.1 was chemically synthesized and refolded into its globular disulfide isomer. The synthetic Lp1.1 induced seizure and paralysis on freshwater goldfish and selectively reversibly inhibited ACh-evoked currents in Xenopus oocytes expressing rat alpha3beta2 and alpha6alpha3beta2 nAChRs. Comparing the distinct primary structure with other functionally related alpha-conotoxins could indicate structural features in Lp1.1 that may be associated with its unique receptor recognition profile. PMID:18588930

  19. Hippocampal GABAergic interneurons coexpressing alpha7-nicotinic receptors and connexin-36 are able to improve neuronal viability under oxygen-glucose deprivation.

    PubMed

    Voytenko, L P; Lushnikova, I V; Savotchenko, A V; Isaeva, E V; Skok, M V; Lykhmus, O Yu; Patseva, M A; Skibo, G G

    2015-08-01

    The hippocampal interneurons are very diverse by chemical profiles and rather inconsistent by sensitivity to CI. Some hippocampal GABAergic interneurons survive certain time after ischemia while ischemia-sensitive interneurons and pyramidal neurons are damaged. GABAergic signaling, nicotinic receptors expressing α7-subunit (α7nAChRs(+)) and connexin-36 (Cx36(+), electrotonic gapjunctions protein) contradictory modulate post-ischemic environment. We hypothesized that hippocampal ischemia-resistant GABAergic interneurons coexpressing glutamate decarboxylase-67 isoform (GAD67(+)), α7nAChRs(+), Cx36(+) are able to enhance neuronal viability. To check this hypothesis the histochemical and electrophysiological investigations have been performed using rat hippocampal organotypic culture in the condition of 30-min oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD). Post-OGD reoxygenation (4h) revealed in CA1 pyramidal layer numerous damaged cells, decreased population spike amplitude and increased pair-pulse depression. In these conditions GAD67(+) interneurons displayed the OGD-resistance and significant increase of GABA synthesis/metabolism (GAD67-immunofluorescence, mitochondrial activity). The α7nAChRs(+) and Cx36(+) co-localizations were revealed in resistant GAD67(+) interneurons. Under OGD: GABAA-receptors (GABAARs) blockade increased cell damage and exacerbated the pair-pulse depression in CA1 pyramidal layer; α7nAChRs and Cx36-channels separate blockades sufficiently decreased cell damage while interneuronal GAD67-immunofluorescence and mitochondrial activity were similar to the control. Thus, hippocampal GABAergic interneurons co-expressing α7nAChRs and Cx36 remained resistant certain time after OGD and were able to modulate CA1 neuron survival through GABAARs, α7nAChRs and Cx36-channels activity. The enhancements of the neuronal viability together with GABA synthesis/metabolism normalization suggest cooperative neuroprotective mechanism that could be used for increase in

  20. Nicotine induces fibrogenic changes in human liver via nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed on hepatic stellate cells

    SciTech Connect

    Soeda, Junpei; Morgan, Maelle; McKee, Chad; Mouralidarane, Angelina; Lin, ChingI; Roskams, Tania; Oben, Jude A.

    2012-01-06

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Cigarette smoke may induce liver fibrosis via nicotine receptors. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Nicotine induces proliferation of hepatic stellate cells (HSCs). Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Nicotine activates hepatic fibrogenic pathways. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Nicotine receptor antagonists attenuate HSC proliferation. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Nicotinic receptor antagonists may have utility as novel anti-fibrotic agents. -- Abstract: Background and aims: Cigarette smoke (CS) may cause liver fibrosis but possible involved mechanisms are unclear. Among the many chemicals in CS is nicotine - which affects cells through nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). We studied the effects of nicotine, and involved pathways, on human primary hepatic stellate cells (hHSCs), the principal fibrogenic cells in the liver. We then determined possible disease relevance by assaying nAChR in liver samples from human non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Methods: hHSC were isolated from healthy human livers and nAChR expression analyzed - RT-PCR and Western blotting. Nicotine induction of hHSC proliferation, upregulation of collagen1-{alpha}2 and the pro-fibrogenic cytokine transforming growth factor beta 1 (TGF-{beta}1) was determined along with involved intracellular signaling pathways. nAChR mRNA expression was finally analyzed in whole liver biopsies obtained from patients diagnosed with non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Results: hHSCs express muscle type ({alpha}1, {beta}1, delta and epsilon) and neuronal type ({alpha}3, {alpha}6, {alpha}7, {beta}2 and {beta}4) nAChR subunits at the mRNA level. Among these subunits, {alpha}3, {alpha}7, {beta}1 and {epsilon} were predominantly expressed as confirmed by Western blotting. Nicotine induced hHSC proliferation was attenuated by mecamylamine (p < 0.05). Additionally, collagen1-{alpha}2 and TGF-{beta}1 mRNA expression were significantly upregulated by nicotine and inhibited by

  1. Assessment of the Protection of Dopaminergic Neurons by an α7 Nicotinic Receptor Agonist, PHA 543613 Using [(18)F]LBT-999 in a Parkinson's Disease Rat Model.

    PubMed

    Sérrière, Sophie; Doméné, Aurélie; Vercouillie, Johnny; Mothes, Céline; Bodard, Sylvie; Rodrigues, Nuno; Guilloteau, Denis; Routier, Sylvain; Page, Guylène; Chalon, Sylvie

    2015-01-01

    The inverse association between nicotine intake and Parkinson's disease (PD) is well established and suggests that this molecule could be neuroprotective through anti-inflammatory action mediated by nicotinic receptors, including the α7-subtype (α7R). The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of an agonist of α7R, PHA 543613, on striatal dopaminergic neurodegeneration and neuroinflammation in a rat model of PD induced by 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lesion. Adult male Wistar rats were lesioned in the right striatum and assigned to either the PHA group (n = 7) or the Sham group (n = 5). PHA 543613 hydrochloride at the concentration of 6 mg/kg (PHA group) or vehicle (Sham group) was intra-peritoneally injected 2 h before 6-OHDA lesioning and then at days 2, 4, and 6 post-lesion. Positron emission tomography (PET) imaging was performed at 7 days post-lesion using [(18)F]LBT-999 to quantify the striatal dopamine transporter (DAT). After PET imaging, neuroinflammation was evaluated in same animals in vitro through the measurement of the microglial activation marker 18 kDa translocator protein (TSPO) by quantitative autoradiography with [(3)H]PK-11195. The DAT density reflecting the integrity of dopaminergic neurons was significantly decreased while the intensity of neuroinflammation measured by TSPO density was significantly increased in the lesioned compared to intact striatum in both groups. However, these both modifications were partially reversed in the PHA group compared to Sham. In addition, a significant positive correlation between the degree of lesion and the intensity of neuroinflammation was evidenced. These findings indicate that PHA 543613 exerts neuroprotective effects on the striatal dopaminergic neurons associated with a reduction in microglial activation in this model of PD. This reinforces the hypothesis that an α7R agonist could provide beneficial effects for the treatment of PD. PMID:26389120

  2. Acetylcholine Acts through Nicotinic Receptors to Enhance the Firing Rate of a Subset of Hypocretin Neurons in the Mouse Hypothalamus through Distinct Presynaptic and Postsynaptic Mechanisms1,2

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Wen-Liang; Gao, Xiao-Bing

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Hypocretin/orexin neurons regulate many behavioral functions, including addiction. Nicotine acts through nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) to alter firing rate of neurons throughout the brain, leading to addiction-related behaviors. While nAChRs are expressed in the hypothalamus and cholinergic fibers project to this structure, it is unclear how acetylcholine modulates the activity of hypocretin neurons. In this study, we stimulated hypocretin neurons in mouse brain slices with ACh in the presence of atropine to dissect presynaptic and postsynaptic modulation of these neurons through nAChRs. Approximately one-third of tested hypocretin neurons responded to pressure application of ACh (1 mM) with an increase in firing frequency. Stimulation of postsynaptic nAChRs with ACh or nicotine resulted in a highly variable inward current in approximately one-third of hypocretin neurons. In contrast, ACh or nicotine (1 µM) reliably decreased the frequency of miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs). Antagonism of nAChRs with mecamylamine also suppressed mEPSC frequency, suggesting that an endogenous, tonic activation of presynaptic nAChRs might be required for maintaining functional mEPSC frequency. Antagonism of heteromeric (α4β2) or homomeric (α7) nAChRs alone suppressed mEPSCs to a lesser extent. Finally, blocking internal calcium release reduced the frequency of mEPSCs, occluding the suppressive effect of presynaptic ACh. Taken together, these data provide a mechanism by which phasic ACh release enhances the firing of a subset of hypocretin neurons through postsynaptic nAChRs, but disrupts tonic, presynaptic nAChR-mediated glutamatergic inputs to the overall population of hypocretin neurons, potentially enhancing the signal-to-noise ratio during the response of the nAChR-positive subset of neurons. PMID:26322330

  3. New analogues of epiboxidine incorporating the 4,5-dihydroisoxazole nucleus: synthesis, binding affinity at neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, and molecular modeling investigations.

    PubMed

    Dallanoce, Clelia; Magrone, Pietro; Bazza, Paola; Grazioso, Giovanni; Rizzi, Luca; Riganti, Loredana; Gotti, Cecilia; Clementi, Francesco; Frydenvang, Karla; De Amici, Marco

    2009-02-01

    A group of novel 4,5-dihydro-3-methylisoxazolyl derivatives, structurally related to epiboxidine (=(1R,4S,6S)-6-(3-methylisoxazol-5-yl)-7-azabicyclo[2.2.1]heptane), was prepared via 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition of acetonitrile oxide to different olefins. Target compounds 1a and 1b, 2a and 2b, 3, 4, and 5 were tested for affinity at neuronal nicotinic heteromeric (alpha4beta2) and homomeric (alpha7) acetylcholine receptors. Notably, diastereoisomers 1a and 1b were characterized by a massive drop of the affinity at the alpha4beta2 subtypes (K(i) values spanning the range 4.3-126 microM), when compared with that of epiboxidine (K(i)=0.6 nM). Therefore, the replacement of the 3-methylisoxazole ring of epiboxidine with the 4,5-dihydro-3-methylisoxazole nucleus is detrimental for the affinity at alpha4beta2 receptors. A comparable lack of affinity/selectivity for the two nAChR subtypes under study was evidenced for the remaining epiboxidine-related dihydroisoxazole derivatives 2a and 2b, and 3-5. Diastereoisomers 1a and 1b, and spirocyclic derivative 3 were docked into molecular models of the receptor subtypes under study, and their binding mode was compared with that of reference ligands endowed with high binding affinity. PMID:19235154

  4. Recent developments in the synthesis of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor ligands.

    PubMed

    Breining, Scott R

    2004-01-01

    The extraordinary pharmacology of nicotine and epibatidine have indicated the potential for nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) ligands to serve as a new therapeutic class for a host of CNS disorders. Many such ligands are natural products, or analogs thereof, which represent a significant challenge to the synthetic chemist. Synthesis of such molecules often serves as a showcase to demonstrate the potential of newly developed methodology. This synthetic challenge coupled with the promise of pharmacological activity in compounds possessing the nicotinic pharmacophore has stimulated a great deal of synthetic activity over the last five years. The present report provides an overview of novel synthetic methodology occurring during this period directed toward the synthesis of compounds with presumed affinity for the neuronal nAChR. Syntheses chosen for review here represent the major efforts toward molecules such as epibatidine analogs, anatoxin-a, nicotine and related alkaloids, conformationally constrained nicotine derivatives, cytisine and methyllycaconitine (MLA). PMID:14965298

  5. TC-5619: An alpha7 neuronal nicotinic receptor-selective agonist that demonstrates efficacy in animal models of the positive and negative symptoms and cognitive dysfunction of schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Hauser, T.A.; Kucinski, A.; Jordan, K.G.; Gatto, G.J.; Wersinger, S.R.; Hesse, R.A.; Stachowiak, E.K.; Stachowiak, M.K.; Papke, R.L.; Lippiello, P.M.; Bencherif, M.

    2010-01-01

    A growing body of evidence suggests that the alpha7 neuronal nicotinic receptor (NNR) subtype is an important target for the development of novel therapies to treat schizophrenia, offering the possibility to address not only the positive but also the cognitive and negative symptoms associated with the disease. In order to probe the relationship of alpha7 function to relevant behavioral correlates we employed TC-5619, a novel selective agonist for the alpha7 NNR subtype. TC-5619 binds with very high affinity to the alpha7 subtype and is a potent full agonist. TC-5619 has little or no activity at other nicotinic receptors, including the α4β2, ganglionic (α3β4) and muscle subtypes. The transgenic th(tk−)/th(tk−) mouse model that reflects many of the developmental, anatomical, and multi-transmitter biochemical aspects of schizophrenia was used to assess the antipsychotic effects of TC-5619. In these mice TC-5619 acted both alone and synergistically with the antipsychotic clozapine to correct impaired pre-pulse inhibition (PPI) and social behavior which model positive and negative symptoms, respectively. Antipsychotic and cognitive effects of TC-5619 were also assessed in rats. Similar to the results in the transgenic mice, TC-5619 significantly reversed apomorphine-induced PPI deficits. In a novel object recognition paradigm in rats TC-5619 demonstrated long-lasting enhancement of memory over a wide dose range. These results suggest that alpha7-selective agonists such as TC-5619, either alone or in combination with antipsychotics, could offer a new approach to treating the constellation of symptoms associated with schizophrenia, including cognitive dysfunction. PMID:19482012

  6. Effect of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha 1 (nAChRα1) peptides on rabies virus infection in neuronal cells.

    PubMed

    Sajjanar, Basavaraj; Saxena, Shikha; Bisht, Deepika; Singh, Arvind Kumar; Manjunatha Reddy, G B; Singh, Rajendra; Singh, R P; Kumar, Satish

    2016-06-01

    Rabies virus (RABV) is neurotropic and causes acute progressive encephalitis. Herein, we report the interaction of nAChRα1-subunit peptides with RABV and the effect of these peptides on RABV infection in cultured neuronal cells. Peptide sequences derived from torpedo, bovine, human and rats were synthesized and studied for their interactions with RABV using virus capture ELISA and peptide immunofluorescence. The results showed specific binding of the nAChRα1-subunit peptides to the RABV. In the virus adsorption assay, these peptides were found to inhibit the attachment of the RABV to the neuronal cells. The nAChRα1-subunit peptides inhibited the RABV infection and reduced viral gene expression in the cultured neuroblastoma (N2A) cells. Torpedo peptide sequence (T-32) had highest antiviral effect (IC50=14±3.01μM) compared to the other peptides studied. The results of the study indicated that nAChRα1-subunit peptides may act as receptor decoy molecules and inhibit the binding of virus to the native host cell receptors and hence may reduce viral infection. PMID:26656837

  7. The Dinoflagellate Toxin 20-Methyl Spirolide-G Potently Blocks Skeletal Muscle and Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors.

    PubMed

    Couesnon, Aurélie; Aráoz, Rómulo; Iorga, Bogdan I; Benoit, Evelyne; Reynaud, Morgane; Servent, Denis; Molgó, Jordi

    2016-01-01

    The cyclic imine toxin 20-methyl spirolide G (20-meSPX-G), produced by the toxigenic dinoflagellate Alexandrium ostenfeldii/Alexandrium peruvianum, has been previously reported to contaminate shellfish in various European coastal locations, as revealed by mouse toxicity bioassay. The aim of the present study was to determine its toxicological profile and its molecular target selectivity. 20-meSPX-G blocked nerve-evoked isometric contractions in isolated mouse neuromuscular preparations, while it had no action on contractions elicited by direct electrical stimulation, and reduced reversibly nerve-evoked compound muscle action potential amplitudes in anesthetized mice. Voltage-clamp recordings in Xenopus oocytes revealed that 20-meSPX-G potently inhibited currents evoked by ACh on Torpedo muscle-type and human α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR), whereas lower potency was observed in human α4β2 nAChR. Competition-binding assays showed that 20-meSPX-G fully displaced [³H]epibatidine binding to HEK-293 cells expressing the human α3β2 (Ki = 0.040 nM), whereas a 90-fold lower affinity was detected in human α4β2 nAChR. The spirolide displaced [(125)I]α-bungarotoxin binding to Torpedo membranes (Ki = 0.028 nM) and in HEK-293 cells expressing chick chimeric α7-5HT₃ nAChR (Ki = 0.11 nM). In conclusion, this is the first study to demonstrate that 20-meSPX-G is a potent antagonist of nAChRs, and its subtype selectivity is discussed on the basis of molecular docking models. PMID:27563924

  8. Role of β4* Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in the Habenulo-Interpeduncular Pathway in Nicotine Reinforcement in Mice.

    PubMed

    Harrington, Lauriane; Viñals, Xavier; Herrera-Solís, Andrea; Flores, Africa; Morel, Carole; Tolu, Stefania; Faure, Philippe; Maldonado, Rafael; Maskos, Uwe; Robledo, Patricia

    2016-06-01

    Nicotine exerts its psychopharmacological effects by activating the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), composed of alpha and/or beta subunits, giving rise to a diverse population of receptors with a distinct pharmacology. β4-containing (β4*) nAChRs are located almost exclusively in the habenulo-interpeduncular pathway. We examined the role of β4* nAChRs in the medial habenula (MHb) and the interpeduncular nucleus (IPN) in nicotine reinforcement using behavioral, electrophysiological, and molecular techniques in transgenic mice. Nicotine intravenous self-administration (IVSA) was lower in constitutive β4 knockout (KO) mice at all doses tested (7.5, 15, 30, and 60 μg/kg/infusion) compared with wild-type (WT) mice. In vivo microdialysis showed that β4KO mice have higher extracellular dopamine (DA) levels in the nucleus accumbens than in WT mice, and exhibit a differential sensitivity to nicotine-induced DA outflow. Furthermore, electrophysiological recordings in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) demonstrated that DA neurons of β4KO mice are more sensitive to lower doses of nicotine than that of WT mice. Re-expression of β4* nAChRs in IPN neurons fully restored nicotine IVSA, and attenuated the increased sensitivity of VTA DA neurons to nicotine. These findings suggest that β4* nAChRs in the IPN have a role in maintaining nicotine IVSA. PMID:26585290

  9. Rapid Sensitization of Physiological, Neuronal, and Locomotor Effects of Nicotine: Critical Role of Peripheral Drug Actions

    PubMed Central

    Lenoir, Magalie; Tang, Jeremy S.; Woods, Amina S.

    2013-01-01

    Repeated exposure to nicotine and other psychostimulant drugs produces persistent increases in their psychomotor and physiological effects (sensitization), a phenomenon related to the drugs' reinforcing properties and abuse potential. Here we examined the role of peripheral actions of nicotine in nicotine-induced sensitization of centrally mediated physiological parameters (brain, muscle, and skin temperatures), cortical and VTA EEG, neck EMG activity, and locomotion in freely moving rats. Repeated injections of intravenous nicotine (30 μg/kg) induced sensitization of the drug's effects on all these measures. In contrast, repeated injections of the peripherally acting analog of nicotine, nicotine pyrrolidine methiodide (nicotinePM, 30 μg/kg, i.v.) resulted in habituation (tolerance) of the same physiological, neuronal, and behavioral measures. However, after repeated nicotine exposure, acute nicotinePM injections induced nicotine-like physiological responses: powerful cortical and VTA EEG desynchronization, EMG activation, a large brain temperature increase, but weaker hyperlocomotion. Additionally, both the acute locomotor response to nicotine and nicotine-induced locomotor sensitization were attenuated by blockade of peripheral nicotinic receptors by hexamethonium (3 mg/kg, i.v.). These data suggest that the peripheral actions of nicotine, which precede its direct central actions, serve as a conditioned interoceptive cue capable of eliciting nicotine-like physiological and neural responses after repeated nicotine exposure. Thus, by providing a neural signal to the CNS that is repeatedly paired with the direct central effects of nicotine, the drug's peripheral actions play a critical role in the development of nicotine-induced physiological, neural, and behavioral sensitization. PMID:23761889

  10. RIC-3 differentially modulates α4β2 and α7 nicotinic receptor assembly, expression, and nicotine-induced receptor upregulation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Recent work has shown that the chaperone resistant to inhibitors of acetylcholinesterase (RIC-3) is critical for the folding, maturation and functional expression of a variety of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. α7 nicotinic receptors can only assemble and functionally express in select lines of cells, provided that RIC-3 is present. In contrast, α4β2 nicotinic receptors can functionally express in many cell lines even without the presence of RIC-3. Depending on the cell line, RIC-3 has differential effects on α4β2 receptor function – enhancement in mammalian cells but inhibition in Xenopus oocytes. Other differences between the two receptor types include nicotine-induced upregulation. When expressed in cell lines, α4β2 receptors readily and robustly upregulate with chronic nicotine exposure. However, α7 nicotinic receptors appear more resistant and require higher concentrations of nicotine to induce upregulation. Could the coexpression of RIC-3 modulate the extent of nicotine-induced upregulation not only for α7 receptors but also α4β2 receptors? We compared and contrasted the effects of RIC-3 on assembly, trafficking, protein expression and nicotine-induced upregulation on both α7 and α4β2 receptors using fluorescent protein tagged nicotinic receptors and Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) microscopy imaging. Results RIC-3 increases assembly and cell surface trafficking of α7 receptors but does not alter α7 protein expression in transfected HEK293T cells. In contrast, RIC-3 does not affect assembly of α4β2 receptors but increases α4 and β2 subunit protein expression. Acute nicotine (30 min exposure) was sufficient to upregulate FRET between α4 and β2 subunits. Surprisingly, when RIC-3 was coexpressed with α4β2 receptors nicotine-induced upregulation was prevented. α7 receptors did not upregulate with acute nicotine in the presence or absence of RIC-3. Conclusions These results provide interesting novel data

  11. In vitro metabolism of α7 neuronal nicotinic receptor agonist AZD0328 and enzyme identification for its N-oxide metabolite.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Diansong; Zhang, Minli; Ye, Xiaomei; Gu, Chungang; Piser, Timothy M; Lanoue, Bernard A; Schock, Sara A; Cheng, Yi-Fang; Grimm, Scott W

    2011-03-01

    1. AZD0328 was pharmacologically characterized as a α7 neuronal nicotinic receptor agonist intended for treatment of Alzheimer's disease. In vitro AZD0328 cross species metabolite profile and enzyme identification for its N-oxide metabolite were evaluated in this study. 2. AZD0328 was very stable in the human hepatocyte incubation, whereas extensively metabolized in rat, dog and guinea pig hepatocyte incubations. The N-oxidation metabolite (M6) was the only metabolite detected in human hepatocyte incubations, and it also appeared to be the major in vitro metabolic pathway in a number of preclinical species. In addition, N-glucuronide metabolite of AZD0328 was observed in human liver microsomes. 3. Other metabolic pathways in the preclinical species include hydroxylation in azabicyclo octane or furopyridine part of the molecule. Pyridine N-methylation of AZD0328 (M2) was identified as a dog specific metabolite, not observed in human or other preclinical species. 4. Multiple enzymes including CYP2D6, CYP3A4/5, FMO1 and FMO3 catalyzed AZD0328 metabolism. The potential for AZD0328 to be inhibited clinically by co-administered drugs or genetic polymorphism is relative low. PMID:21226652

  12. Candidate gene association studies of the alpha 4 (CHRNA4) and beta 2 (CHRNB2) neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit genes in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Cook, Lynnette J; Ho, Luk W; Taylor, Alison E; Brayne, Carol; Evans, John Grimley; Xuereb, John; Cairns, Nigel J; Pritchard, Antonia; Lemmon, Helen; Mann, David; St Clair, David; Turic, Dragana; Hollingworth, Paul; Moore, Pamela J; Jehu, Luke; Archer, Nicola; Walter, Sarah; Foy, Catherine; Edmondson, Amanda; Powell, John; Lovestone, Simon; Owen, Michael J; Williams, Julie; Lendon, Corinne; Rubinsztein, David C

    2004-03-25

    Consistent deficits in the cholinergic system are evident in Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients, including selective loss of alpha4beta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the brains of AD patients. Knockout mice for the beta2 subunit have impaired neuronal survival in ageing. Accordingly, we have analysed polymorphisms in the genes that encode the alpha4 and beta2 subunits, CHRNA4 and CHRNB2 respectively, for genetic associations with late-onset AD. A significant association for disease was observed for a non-coding polymorphism in CHRNB2 (odds ratio=0.57, 95% confidence interval=0.35-0.95, P=0.024). Replication analysis was performed in two further sample sets. While these did not individually yield significant results, a significant association remained when all samples were pooled (odds ratio=0.70, 95% confidence interval=0.52-0.95, P=0.019). These data suggest that this variant warrants further examination in large case-control series. PMID:15026168

  13. Potentiation of Neuronal Nicotinic Receptors by 17β-Estradiol: Roles of the Carboxy-Terminal and the Amino-Terminal Extracellular Domains

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Xiaochun; Steinbach, Joe Henry

    2015-01-01

    The endogenous steroid 17β-estradiol (βEST) potentiates activation of neuronal nicotinic receptors containing α4 subunits. Previous work has shown that the final 4 residues of the α4 subunit are required for potentiation. However, receptors containing the α2 subunit are not potentiated although it has these 4 residues, and only one amino acid difference in the C-terminal tail (FLAGMI vs. WLAGMI). Previous work had indicated that the tryptophan residue was involved in binding an analog of βEST, but not in potentiation by βEST. To determine the structural basis for the loss of potentiation we analyzed data from chimeric subunits, which indicated that the major factor underlying the difference between α2 and α4 is the tryptophan/phenylalanine difference, while the N-terminal extracellular domain is a less significant factor. When the tryptophan in α4 was mutated, both phenylalanine and tyrosine conferred lower potentiation while lysine and leucine did not. The reduction reflected a reduced maximal magnitude of potentiation, indicating that the tryptophan is involved in transduction of steroid effects. The regions of the α4 N-terminal extracellular domain involved in potentiation lie near the agonist-binding pocket, rather than close to the membrane or the C-terminal tail, and appear to be involved in transduction rather than binding. These observations indicate that the C-terminal region is involved in both steroid binding (AGMI residues) and transduction (W). The role of the N-terminus appears to be independent of the C-terminal tryptophan and likely reflects an influence on conformational changes caused during channel activation by agonist and potentiation by estradiol. PMID:26684647

  14. The reducing agent dithiothreitol (DTT) does not abolish the inhibitory nicotinic response recorded from rat dorsolateral septal neurons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sorenson, E. M.; Gallagher, J. P.

    1993-01-01

    Previous intracellular recordings have demonstrated that dorsolateral septal nucleus (DLSN) neurons express a novel nicotinic receptor which produces a direct membrane hyperpolarization when activated by nicotinic agonists. Activation of the classical excitatory nicotinic receptors has been shown to require a disulfide bond involving the cysteines at positions 192 and 193 of the alpha subunits of the receptor. Reduction of this cystine bond with dithiothreitol (DTT) abolishes agonist activation of excitatory nicotinic receptors. We have now examined whether DTT treatment of the inhibitory nicotinic receptor on DLSN neurons also abolishes the inhibitory nicotinic response. We find that the inhibitory response persists after treatment of the neurons with 1 mM DTT, even if the reduction is followed by alkylation of the receptor with bromoacetylcholine to prevent possible reformation of disulfide bonds. This result suggests that the agonist binding site on the inhibitory nicotinic receptor does not require an intact disulfide bond, similar to the bond on the alpha subunit of the excitatory nicotinic receptor, for agonist activation of the receptor. Some of these results have been previously reported in abstract form.

  15. Identification of regions involved in the binding of alpha-bungarotoxin to the human alpha7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor using synthetic peptides.

    PubMed Central

    Marinou, Martha; Tzartos, Socrates J

    2003-01-01

    The neuronal alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) binds the neurotoxin alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-Bgt). Fine mapping of the alpha-Bgt-binding site on the human alpha7 AChR was performed using synthetic peptides covering the entire extracellular domain of the human alpha7 subunit (residues 1-206). Screening of these peptides for (125)I-alpha-Bgt binding resulted in the identification of at least two toxin-binding sites, one at residues 186-197, which exhibited the best (125)I-alpha-Bgt binding, and one at residues 159-165, with weak toxin-binding capacity; these correspond, respectively, to loops C and IV of the agonist-binding site. Toxin binding to the alpha7(186-197) peptide was almost completely inhibited by unlabelled alpha-Bgt or d -tubocurarine. Alanine substitutions within the sequence 186-198 revealed a predominant contribution of aromatic and negatively charged residues to the binding site. This sequence is homologous to the alpha-Bgt binding site of the alpha1 subunit (residues 188-200 in Torpedo AChR). In competition experiments, the soluble peptides alpha7(186-197) and Torpedo alpha1(184-200) inhibited the binding of (125)I-alpha-Bgt to the immobilized alpha7(186-197) peptide, to native Torpedo AChR, and to the extracellular domain of the human alpha1 subunit. These results suggest that the toxin-binding sites of the neuronal alpha7 and muscle-type AChRs bind to identical or overlapping sites on the alpha-Bgt molecule. In support of this, when synthetic alpha-Bgt peptides were tested for binding to the recombinant extracellular domains of the human alpha7 and alpha1 subunits, and to native Torpedo and alpha7 AChR, the results indicated that alpha-Bgt interacts with both neuronal and muscle-type AChRs through its central loop II and C-terminal tail. PMID:12614199

  16. Nicotine excites corticotropin-releasing hormone mRNA-expressing neuron in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus in vitro in rats.

    PubMed

    Cui, Bai-Ri; Zhang, Bin-Bin; Chu, Chun-Ping; Cui, Xun; Qiu, De-Lai

    2016-05-25

    Nicotine is known to modulate the activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis by stimulating corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) release from the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN). However, the mechanism by which nicotine affects the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis by modulating PVN CRH neuronal activity is currently unclear. Here, we examined the effects of nicotine on PVN CRH-mRNA-expressing neurons in vitro in rats by whole-cell patch-clamp recordings, biocytin staining, and single-cell reverse transcription-multiplex PCR techniques. Of the 146 PVN putative parvocellular neurons, 17.1% (25/146) coexpressed GAPDH mRNA and CRH mRNA. Under current-clamp recording conditions, application of nicotine (1 μM) induced excitation in 92% (23/25) PVN CRH-mRNA-expressing neurons, which showed a significant increase in the spike firing rate accompanied by a depolarization of the membrane potential. Nicotine induced an increase in the spike firing rate of PVN CRH-mRNA-expressing neurons in a concentration-dependent manner. The half-effective concentration (EC50) of nicotine for increasing the spike firing rate of PVN CRH-mRNA-expressing neurons was 1.6 μM. Extracellular application of ionotropic glutamate receptor antagonist kynurenic acid (1 mM) abolished the nicotine-induced excitation of PVN CRH-mRNA-expressing neurons. Moreover, application of nicotine induced a significant increase in the spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents frequency, but without significantly altering the spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents amplitude of the CRH-mRNA-expressing neurons. Biocytin staining confirmed that the nicotine-sensitive CRH-mRNA-expressing neurons were located in the PVN parvocellular division. These results indicated that extracellular administration of nicotine indirectly excited PVN CRH-mRNA-expressing neurons, suggesting that nicotine modulated PVN CRH secretion by enhancement of both the presynaptic action potential drive and

  17. Nicotine receptors mediating sensorimotor gating and its enhancement by systemic nicotine

    PubMed Central

    Pinnock, Farena; Bosch, Daniel; Brown, Tyler; Simons, Nadine; Yeomans, John R.; DeOliveira, Cleusa; Schmid, Susanne

    2015-01-01

    Prepulse inhibition (PPI) of startle occurs when intensity stimuli precede stronger startle-inducing stimuli by 10–1000 ms. PPI deficits are found in individuals with schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders, and they correlate with other cognitive impairments. Animal research and clinical studies have demonstrated that both PPI and cognitive function can be enhanced by nicotine. PPI has been shown to be mediated, at least in part, by mesopontine cholinergic neurons that project to pontine startle neurons and activate muscarinic and potentially nicotine receptors (nAChRs). The subtypes and anatomical location of nAChRs involved in mediating and modulating PPI remain unresolved. We tested the hypothesis that nAChRs that are expressed by pontine startle neurons contribute to PPI. We also explored whether or not these pontine receptors are responsible for the nicotine enhancement of PPI. While systemic administration of nAChR antagonists had limited effects on PPI, PnC microinfusions of the non-α7nAChR preferring antagonist TMPH, but not of the α7nAChR antagonist MLA, into the PnC significantly reduced PPI. Electrophysiological recordings from startle-mediating PnC neurons confirmed that nicotine affects excitability of PnC neurons, which could be antagonized by TMPH, but not by MLA, indicating the expression of non-α7nAChR. In contrast, systemic nicotine enhancement of PPI was only reversed by systemic MLA and not by TMPH or local microinfusions of MLA into the PnC. In summary, our data indicate that non-α7nAChRs in the PnC contribute to PPI at stimulus intervals of 100 ms or less, whereas activation of α7nAChRs in other brain areas is responsible for the systemic nicotine enhancement of PPI. This is important knowledge for the correct interpretation of behavioral, preclinical, and clinical data as well as for developing drugs for the amelioration of PPI deficits and the enhancement of cognitive function. PMID:25717295

  18. Nicotinic modulation of Ca2+ oscillations in rat cortical neurons in vitro.

    PubMed

    Wang, JianGang; Wang, YaLi; Guo, FangLi; Feng, ZhiBo; Wang, XiangFang; Lu, ChengBiao

    2016-05-01

    The roles of nicotine on Ca(2+) oscillations [intracellular Ca(2+) ([Ca(2+)]i) oscillation] in rat primary cultured cortical neurons were studied. The spontaneous [Ca(2+)]i oscillations (SCO) were recorded in a portion of the neurons (65%) cultured for 7-10 days in vitro. Application of nicotine enhanced [Ca(2+)]i oscillation frequency and amplitude, which were reduced by the selective α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) antagonist dihydro-β-erythroidine (DHβE) hydrobromide, and the selective α7-nAChRs antagonist methyllycaconitine citrate (MLA, 20 nM). DHβE reduced SCO frequency and prevented the nicotinic increase in the frequency. DHβE somewhat enhanced SCO amplitude and prevented nicotinic increase in the amplitude. MLA (20 nM) itself reduced SCO frequency without affecting the amplitude but blocked nicotinic increase in [Ca(2+)]i oscillation frequency and amplitude. Furthermore, coadministration of both α4β2- and α7-nAChRs antagonists completely prevented nicotinic increment in [Ca(2+)]i oscillation frequency and amplitude. Thus, our results indicate that both α4β2- and α7-nAChRs mediated nicotine-induced [Ca(2+)]i oscillations, and two nAChR subtypes differentially regulated SCO. PMID:26843531

  19. Immobilization with Atrophy Induces Increased Expression of Neuronal Nicotinic α7 Acetylcholine Receptors in Muscle Contributing to Neurotransmission

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Sangseok; Yang, Hong-seuk; Sasakawa, Tomoki; Khan, Mohammed A. S.; Khatri, Ashok; Kaneki, Masao; Jeevendra Martyn, J. A.

    2014-01-01

    Background Mature acetylcholine receptor (AChR) isoform normally mediates muscle contraction. The hypothesis that α7AChRs upregulate during immobilization and contribute to neurotransmission was tested pharmacologically using specific blockers to mature (waglerin-1), immature (αA-OIVA), and α7AChRs methyllycaconitine, and non-specific muscle AChR antagonist, α-bungarotoxin. Methods Mice were immobilized; contralateral limb was control. Fourteen days later, anesthetized mice were mechanically ventilated. Nerve-stimulated tibialis muscle contractions on both sides were recorded, and blockers enumerated above sequentially administered via jugular vein. Data are mean ± S.E. Results Immobilization (N=7) induced tibialis muscle atrophy (40.6 ± 2.8 vs 52.1 ± 2.0 mg, p<0.01) and decrease of twitch tension (34.8 ± 1.1 vs. 42.9 ± 1.5 g, p< 0.01). Waglerin-1 (0.3 ± 0.05 μg/g) significantly (p=0.001, N=9) depressed twitch tension on contralateral (≥ 97%) versus immobilized side (~45%). Additional waglerin-1 (total dose 1.06 ± 0.12 μg/g or ~15.0 X ED50 in normals) could not depress twitch ≥ 80% on immobilized side. Immature AChR blocker, αA-OIVA (17.0 ± 0.25 μg/g) did not change tension bilaterally. Administration of α-bungarotoxin (N=4) or methyllycaconitine (N=3) caused ≥ 96% suppression of the remaining twitch tension on immobilized side. Methyllycaconitine, administered first (N=3), caused equipotent inhibition by waglerin-1 on both sides. Protein expression of α7AChRs was significantly (N=3, p<0.01) increased on the immobilized side. Conclusions Ineffectiveness of waglerin-1 suggests the twitch tension during immobilization is maintained by receptors other than mature AChRs. Since αA-OIVA caused no changes, immature AChRs contribute minimally to neurotransmission. During immobilization ~20% of twitch tension is maintained by upregulation of α-bungarotoxin- and methyllycaconitine-sensitive α7AChRs. PMID:24126263

  20. Nicotine enhances inhibition of mouse vagal motor neurons by modulating excitability of premotor GABAergic neurons in the nucleus tractus solitarii.

    PubMed

    Xu, Hong; Boychuk, Jeffery A; Boychuk, Carie R; Uteshev, Victor V; Smith, Bret N

    2015-02-15

    The caudal nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) serves as the site of the first synapse for visceral sensory inputs to the central nervous system. The NTS sends functional projections to multiple brain nuclei, with gastric-related projections primarily targeting the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV). Previous studies have demonstrated that the majority of caudal NTS neurons that project to the DMV respond robustly to nicotine and express nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). However, the cytochemical identity and relationship with specific viscera of DMV-projecting, nicotine-responsive caudal NTS neurons have not been determined. The present study used transgenic mice that express enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) under a GAD67 promoter in a subset of GABAergic neurons, in vivo retrograde pseudorabies viral labeling to identify gastric-related vagal complex neurons, and patch-clamp electrophysiology in acute brain stem slices to test the hypothesis that gastric-related and GABAergic inhibitory synaptic input to the DMV from the caudal NTS is under a robust modulatory control by nAChRs. Our results suggest that activation of nAChRs in the caudal NTS, but not DMV, potentiates GABAergic, but not glutamatergic, input to the DMV. Gastric-related caudal NTS and DMV neurons are directly involved in this nicotine-sensitive circuitry. Understanding the central patterns of nicotinic modulation of visceral sensory-motor circuitry may help develop therapeutic interventions to restore autonomic homeostasis in patients with autonomic impairments. PMID:25429117

  1. Comparison of nicotinic receptor binding and biotransformation of coniine in the rat and chick.

    PubMed

    Forsyth, C S; Speth, R C; Wecker, L; Galey, F D; Frank, A A

    1996-12-31

    Coniine, an alkaloid from Conium maculatum (poison hemlock), is a known teratogen in many domestic species with maternal ingestion resulting in arthrogryposis of the offspring. We have previously shown that rats are not susceptible and rabbits only weakly susceptible to coniine-induced arthrogryposis. However, the chick embryo does provide a reproducible laboratory animal model of coniine-induced teratogenesis. The reason for this cross-species variation is unknown. The purpose of this study was to evaluate coniine binding to nicotinic receptors and to measure coniine metabolism in vitro between susceptible and non-susceptible species. Using the chick model, neither the peripheral nicotinic receptor antagonist d-tubocurarine chloride nor the central nicotinic receptor antagonist trimethaphan camsylate blocked the teratogenesis or lethality of 1.5% coniine (50 microliters/egg). Trimethaphan camsylate enhanced coniine-induced lethality in a dose-dependent manner. Neither nicotinic receptor blocker prevented nicotine sulfate-induced malformations but d-tubocurarine chloride did block lethality in a dose-dependent manner. Competition by coniine for [125I]-alpha-bungarotoxin to nicotinic receptors isolated from adult rat diaphragm and chick thigh muscle and competition by coniine for [3H]-cytisine to receptors from rat and chick brain were used to assess coniine binding to nicotinic receptors. The IC50 for coniine in rat diaphragm was 314 microM while that for chick leg muscle was 70 microM. For neuronal nicotinic receptors, the IC50s of coniine for maternal rat brain, fetal rat brain, and chick brain were 1100 microM, 820 microM, and 270 microM, respectively. There were no differences in coniine biotransformation in vitro by microsomes from rat or chick livers. Differences in apparent affinity of coniine for nicotinic receptors or differences in the quantity of the nicotinic receptor between the rat and chick may explain, in part, the differences in susceptibility of

  2. Vulnerability to nicotine self-administration in adolescent mice correlates with age-specific expression of α4* nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Renda, Anthony; Penty, Nora; Komal, Pragya; Nashmi, Raad

    2016-09-01

    The majority of smokers begin during adolescence, a developmental period with a high susceptibility to substance abuse. Adolescents are affected differently by nicotine compared to adults, with adolescents being more vulnerable to nicotine's rewarding properties. It is unknown if the age-dependent molecular composition of a younger brain contributes to a heightened susceptibility to nicotine addiction. Nicotine, the principle pharmacological component of tobacco, binds and activates nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the brain. The most prevalent is the widely expressed α4-containing (α4*) subtype which mediates reward and is strongly implicated in nicotine dependence. Exposing different age groups of mice, postnatal day (P) 44-86 days old, to a two bottle-choice oral nicotine self-administration paradigm for five days yielded age-specific consumption levels. Nicotine self-administration was elevated in the P44 group, peaked at P54-60 and was drastically lower in the P66 through P86 groups. We also quantified α4* nAChR expression via spectral confocal imaging of brain slices from α4YFP knock-in mice, in which the α4 nAChR subunit is tagged with a yellow fluorescent protein. Quantitative fluorescence revealed age-specific α4* nAChR expression in dopaminergic and GABAergic neurons of the ventral tegmental area. Receptor expression showed a strong positive correlation with daily nicotine dose, suggesting that α4* nAChR expression levels are age-specific and may contribute to the propensity to self-administer nicotine. PMID:27102349

  3. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in Sensory Cortex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Metherate, Raju

    2004-01-01

    Acetylcholine release in sensory neocortex contributes to higher-order sensory function, in part by activating nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Molecular studies have revealed a bewildering array of nAChR subtypes and cellular actions; however, there is some consensus emerging about the major nAChR subtypes and their functions in…

  4. Nicotine regulates activity of lateral habenula neurons via presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Zuo, Wanhong; Xiao, Cheng; Gao, Ming; Hopf, F Woodward; Krnjević, Krešimir; McIntosh, J Michael; Fu, Rao; Wu, Jie; Bekker, Alex; Ye, Jiang-Hong

    2016-01-01

    There is much interest in brain regions that drive nicotine intake in smokers. Interestingly, both the rewarding and aversive effects of nicotine are probably critical for sustaining nicotine addiction. The medial and lateral habenular (LHb) nuclei play important roles in processing aversion, and recent work has focused on the critical involvement of the LHb in encoding and responding to aversive stimuli. Several neurotransmitter systems are implicated in nicotine's actions, but very little is known about how nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) regulate LHb activity. Here we report in brain slices that activation of nAChRs depolarizes LHb cells and robustly increases firing, and also potentiates glutamate release in LHb. These effects were blocked by selective antagonists of α6-containing (α6*) nAChRs, and were absent in α6*-nAChR knockout mice. In addition, nicotine activates GABAergic inputs to LHb via α4β2-nAChRs, at lower concentrations but with more rapid desensitization relative to α6*-nAChRs. These results demonstrate the existence of diverse functional nAChR subtypes at presynaptic and postsynaptic sites in LHb, through which nicotine could facilitate or inhibit LHb neuronal activity and thus contribute to nicotine aversion or reward. PMID:27596561

  5. Recurrent exposure to nicotine differentiates human bronchial epithelial cells via epidermal growth factor receptor activation

    SciTech Connect

    Martinez-Garcia, Eva; Irigoyen, Marta; Anso, Elena; Martinez-Irujo, Juan Jose; Rouzaut, Ana

    2008-05-01

    Cigarette smoking is the major preventable cause of lung cancer in developed countries. Nicotine (3-(1-methyl-2-pyrrolidinyl)-pyridine) is one of the major alkaloids present in tobacco. Besides its addictive properties, its effects have been described in panoply of cell types. In fact, recent studies have shown that nicotine behaves as a tumor promoter in transformed epithelial cells. This research focuses on the effects of acute repetitive nicotine exposure on normal human bronchial epithelial cells (NHBE cells). Here we show that treatment of NHBE cells with recurrent doses of nicotine up to 500 {mu}M triggered cell differentiation towards a neuronal-like phenotype: cells emitted filopodia and expressed neuronal markers such as neuronal cell adhesion molecule, neurofilament-M and the transcription factors neuronal N and Pax-3. We also demonstrate that nicotine treatment induced NF-kB translocation to the nucleus, phosphorylation of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), and accumulation of heparin binding-EGF in the extracellular medium. Moreover, addition of AG1478, an inhibitor of EGFR tyrosine phosphorylation, or cetuximab, a monoclonal antibody that precludes ligand binding to the same receptor, prevented cell differentiation by nicotine. Lastly, we show that differentiated cells increased their adhesion to the extracellular matrix and their protease activity. Given that several lung pathologies are strongly related to tobacco consumption, these results may help to better understand the damaging consequences of nicotine exposure.

  6. Nicotinic ACh Receptors as Therapeutic Targets in CNS Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Dineley, Kelly T.; Pandya, Anshul A.; Yakel, Jerrel L.

    2015-01-01

    The neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) can regulate neuronal excitability by acting on the cys-loop cation-conducting ligand-gated nicotinic ACh receptor channels (nAChRs). These receptors are widely distributed throughout the central nervous system, being expressed on neurons and non-neuronal cells, where they participate in a variety of physiological responses such as anxiety, the central processing of pain, food intake, nicotine seeking behavior, and cognitive functions. In the mammalian brain, nine different subunits have been found thus far, which assemble into pentameric complexes with much subunit diversity; however the α7 and α4β2 subtypes predominate in the CNS. Neuronal nAChR dysfunction is involved in the pathophysiology of many neurological disorders. Here we will briefly discuss the functional makeup and expression of the nAChRs in the mammalian brain, and their role as targets in neurodegenerative diseases (in particular Alzheimer’s disease), neurodevelopmental disorders (in particular autism and schizophrenia), and neuropathic pain. PMID:25639674

  7. Nicotinic ACh receptors as therapeutic targets in CNS disorders.

    PubMed

    Dineley, Kelly T; Pandya, Anshul A; Yakel, Jerrel L

    2015-02-01

    The neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) can regulate neuronal excitability by acting on the cys-loop cation-conducting ligand-gated nicotinic ACh receptor (nAChR) channels. These receptors are widely distributed throughout the central nervous system (CNS), being expressed on neurons and non-neuronal cells, where they participate in a variety of physiological responses such as anxiety, the central processing of pain, food intake, nicotine seeking behavior, and cognitive functions. In the mammalian brain, nine different subunits have been found thus far, which assemble into pentameric complexes with much subunit diversity; however, the α7 and α4β2 subtypes predominate in the CNS. Neuronal nAChR dysfunction is involved in the pathophysiology of many neurological disorders. Here we will briefly discuss the functional makeup and expression of the nAChRs in mammalian brain, and their role as targets in neurodegenerative diseases (in particular Alzheimer's disease, AD), neurodevelopmental disorders (in particular autism and schizophrenia), and neuropathic pain. PMID:25639674

  8. ( sup 3 H)cytisine binding to nicotinic cholinergic receptors in brain

    SciTech Connect

    Pabreza, L.A.; Dhawan, S.; Kellar, K.J. )

    1991-01-01

    Cytisine, a ganglionic agonist, competes with high affinity for brain nicotinic cholinergic receptors labeled by any of several nicotinic {sup 3}H-agonist ligands. Here we have examined the binding of ({sup 3}H)cytisine in rat brain homogenates. ({sup 3}H)Cytisine binds with high affinity (Kd less than 1 nM), and specific binding represented 60-90% of total binding at all concentrations examined up to 15 nM. The nicotinic cholinergic agonists nicotine, acetylcholine, and carbachol compete with high affinity for ({sup 3}H)cytisine binding sites, whereas among nicotinic receptor antagonists only dihydro-beta-erythroidine competes with high affinity (in the nanomolar range). Comparison of binding in several brain regions showed that ({sup 3}H)cytisine binding is higher in the thalamus, striatum, and cortex than in the hippocampus, cerebellum, or hypothalamus. The pharmacology and brain regional distribution of ({sup 3}H)cytisine binding sites are those predicted for neuronal nicotinic receptor agonist recognition sites. The high affinity and low nonspecific binding of ({sup 3}H)cytisine should make it a very useful ligand for studying neuronal nicotinic receptors.

  9. Regulation of nicotinic receptors in rat brain following quasi-irreversible nicotinic blockade by chlorisondamine and chronic treatment with nicotine.

    PubMed Central

    el-Bizri, H; Clarke, P B

    1994-01-01

    1. Chronic administration of nicotinic agonists in vivo increases the density of brain nicotinic binding sites. It has been proposed that this up-regulation results from agonist-induced functional blockade of nicotinic receptors. This hypothesis was tested by examining post mortem [3H]-nicotine and [125I]-alpha-bungarotoxin ([125I]-alpha BTX) binding following treatment in vivo with the quasi-irreversible and insurmountable CNS nicotinic blocker chlorisondamine, given either alone or in combination with chronic nicotine administration. 2. In rats that had not received chlorisondamine pretreatment, chronic nicotine administration (0.6 mg kg-1 s.c., twice daily for 12 days) increased [3H]-nicotine binding density (Bmax) in forebrain tissue sections by 19%, with no change in the apparent dissociation constant (KD). Chlorisondamine (10 mg kg-1, s.c.), given once prior to the chronic treatment phase, neither increased [3H]-nicotine binding by itself, nor altered the extent of nicotine-induced up-regulation. Nevertheless, chlorisondamine pretreatment resulted in a persistent blockade of CNS nicotinic receptors, as demonstrated by complete block of acute locomotor responses to nicotine. 3. In a second experiment, [3H]-nicotine and [125I]-alpha BTX binding was measured in tissue homogenates prepared from several brain regions. In the absence of chlorisondamine pretreatment, chronic nicotine administration (1 mg kg-1 s.c., twice daily for 12 days) increased the Bmax of [3H]-nicotine binding in the cerebral cortex (by 34%), striatum (by 28%), midbrain (by 16%) and hippocampus (by 36%); KD was unchanged. As before, this up-regulation was neither mimicked nor blocked by chlorisondamine pretreatment (10 mg kg-1, s.c., given twice), despite persistent blockade of acute locomotor responses to nicotine.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:7858886

  10. Diversity of native nicotinic receptor subtypes in mammalian brain.

    PubMed

    Zoli, Michele; Pistillo, Francesco; Gotti, Cecilia

    2015-09-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are a heterogeneous family of pentameric ligand-gated cation channels that are expressed throughout the brain and involved in a wide range of physiological and pathophysiological processes. The nAChR subtypes share a common basic structure, but their biophysical and pharmacological properties depend on their subunit composition, which is therefore central to understanding their function in the nervous system and discovering new subtype selective drugs. The development of new technologies and the generation of mice carrying deletions or the expression of gain-of-function nAChR subunits, or GFP-tagged receptor genes has allowed the in vivo identification of complex subtypes and to study the role of individual subtypes in specific cells and complex neurobiological systems but much less is known about which native nAChR subtypes are involved in specific physiological functions and pathophysiological conditions in human brain. We briefly review some recent findings concerning the structure and function of native nAChRs, focussing on the subtypes identified in the rodent habenulo-interpeduncular pathway, a pathway involved in nicotine reinforcement and withdrawal. We also discuss recent findings concerning the expression of native subtypes in primate brain. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'The Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: From Molecular Biology to Cognition'. PMID:25460185

  11. Evidence for thymopoietin and thymopoietin/. alpha. -bungarotoxin/nicotinic receptors within the brain

    SciTech Connect

    Quik, M. ); Babu, U.; Audhya, T.; Goldstein, G. )

    1991-03-15

    Thymopoietin, a polypeptide hormone of the thymus that has pleiotropic actions on the immune, endocrine, and nervous systems, potently interacts with the neuromuscular nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Thymopoietin binds to the nicotinic {alpha}-bungarotoxin ({alpha}-BGT) receptor in muscle and, like {alpha}BGT, inhibits cholinergic transmission at this site. Evidence is given that radiolabeled thymopoietin similarly binds to a nicotinic {alpha}-BGT-binding site within the brain and does so with the characteristics of a specific receptor ligand. Thus specific binding to neuronal membranes was saturable, of high affinity linear with increased tissue concentration, and readily reversible; half-time was {approximately}5 min for association and 10 min for dissociation. Binding of {sup 125}I-labeled thymopoietin was displaced not only by unlabeled thymopoietin but also by {alpha}-BGT and the nicotinic receptor ligands d-tubocurarine and nicotine; various other receptor ligands (muscarinic, adrenergic, and dopaminergic) did not affect binding of {sup 125}I-labeled thymopoietin. Thymopoietin was shown by ELISA to be present in brain extracts, displacement curves of thymus and brain extracts being parallel to the standard thymopoietin curve, and Western (immuno) blot identified in brain and thymus extracts a thymopoietin-immunoreactive polypeptide of the same molecular mass as purified thymopoietin polypeptide. The authors conclude that thymopoietin and thymopoietin-binding sites are present within the brain and that the receptor for thymopoietin is the previously identified nicotinic {alpha}-BGT-binding site of neuronal tissue.

  12. Solution conformation of a neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist {alpha}-conotoxin OmIA that discriminates {alpha}3 vs. {alpha}6 nAChR subtypes

    SciTech Connect

    Chi, Seung-Wook; Kim, Do-Hyoung; Olivera, Baldomero M.; McIntosh, J. Michael; Han, Kyou-Hoon . E-mail: khhan600@kribb.re.kr

    2006-06-23

    {alpha}-Conotoxin OmIA from Conus omaria is the only {alpha}-conotoxin that shows a {approx}20-fold higher affinity to the {alpha}3{beta}2 over the {alpha}6{beta}2 subtype of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. We have determined a three-dimensional structure of {alpha}-conotoxin OmIA by nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. {alpha}-Conotoxin OmIA has an '{omega}-shaped' overall topology with His{sup 5}-Asn{sup 12} forming an {alpha}-helix. Structural features of {alpha}-conotoxin OmIA responsible for its selectivity are suggested by comparing its surface characteristics with other functionally related {alpha}4/7 subfamily conotoxins. Reduced size of the hydrophilic area in {alpha}-conotoxin OmIA seems to be associated with the reduced affinity towards the {alpha}6{beta}2 nAChR subtype.

  13. Nicotine regulates activity of lateral habenula neurons via presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Zuo, Wanhong; Xiao, Cheng; Gao, Ming; Hopf, F. Woodward; Krnjević, Krešimir; McIntosh, J. Michael; Fu, Rao; Wu, Jie; Bekker, Alex; Ye, Jiang-Hong

    2016-01-01

    There is much interest in brain regions that drive nicotine intake in smokers. Interestingly, both the rewarding and aversive effects of nicotine are probably critical for sustaining nicotine addiction. The medial and lateral habenular (LHb) nuclei play important roles in processing aversion, and recent work has focused on the critical involvement of the LHb in encoding and responding to aversive stimuli. Several neurotransmitter systems are implicated in nicotine’s actions, but very little is known about how nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) regulate LHb activity. Here we report in brain slices that activation of nAChRs depolarizes LHb cells and robustly increases firing, and also potentiates glutamate release in LHb. These effects were blocked by selective antagonists of α6-containing (α6*) nAChRs, and were absent in α6*-nAChR knockout mice. In addition, nicotine activates GABAergic inputs to LHb via α4β2-nAChRs, at lower concentrations but with more rapid desensitization relative to α6*-nAChRs. These results demonstrate the existence of diverse functional nAChR subtypes at presynaptic and postsynaptic sites in LHb, through which nicotine could facilitate or inhibit LHb neuronal activity and thus contribute to nicotine aversion or reward. PMID:27596561

  14. Localized low-level re-expression of high-affinity mesolimbic nicotinic acetylcholine receptors restores nicotine-induced locomotion but not place conditioning.

    PubMed

    Mineur, Y S; Brunzell, D H; Grady, S R; Lindstrom, J M; McIntosh, J M; Marks, M J; King, S L; Picciotto, M R

    2009-04-01

    High-affinity, beta2-subunit-containing (beta2*) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are essential for nicotine reinforcement; however, these nAChRs are found on both gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and also on terminals of glutamatergic and cholinergic neurons projecting from the pedunculopontine tegmental area and the laterodorsal tegmental nucleus. Thus, systemic nicotine administration stimulates many different neuronal subtypes in various brain nuclei. To identify neurons in which nAChRs must be expressed to mediate effects of systemic nicotine, we investigated responses in mice with low-level, localized expression of beta2* nAChRs in the midbrain/VTA. Nicotine-induced GABA and DA release were partially rescued in striatal synaptosomes from transgenic mice compared with tissue from beta2 knockout mice. Nicotine-induced locomotor activation, but not place preference, was rescued in mice with low-level VTA expression, suggesting that low-level expression of beta2* nAChRs in DA neurons is not sufficient to support nicotine reward. In contrast to control mice, transgenic mice with low-level beta2* nAChR expression in the VTA showed no increase in overall levels of cyclic AMP response element-binding protein (CREB) but did show an increase in CREB phosphorylation in response to exposure to a nicotine-paired chamber. Thus, CREB activation in the absence of regulation of total CREB levels during place preference testing was not sufficient to support nicotine place preference in beta2 trangenic mice. This suggests that partial activation of high-affinity nAChRs in VTA might block the rewarding effects of nicotine, providing a potential mechanism for the ability of nicotinic partial agonists to aid in smoking cessation. PMID:19077117

  15. In vivo pharmacological characterization of a novel selective alpha7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist ABT-107: preclinical considerations in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Bitner, R Scott; Bunnelle, William H; Decker, Michael W; Drescher, Karla U; Kohlhaas, Kathy L; Markosyan, Stella; Marsh, Kennan C; Nikkel, Arthur L; Browman, Kaitlin; Radek, Rich; Anderson, David J; Buccafusco, Jerry; Gopalakrishnan, Murali

    2010-09-01

    We previously reported that alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) agonism produces efficacy in preclinical cognition models correlating with activation of cognitive and neuroprotective signaling pathways associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathology. In the present studies, the selective and potent alpha7 nAChR agonist 5-(6-[(3R)-1-azabicyclo[2.2.2]oct-3-yloxy] pyridazin-3-yl)-1H-indole (ABT-107) was evaluated in behavioral assays representing distinct cognitive domains. Studies were also conducted to address potential issues that may be associated with the clinical development of an alpha7 nAChR agonist. Specifically, ABT-107 improved cognition in monkey delayed matching to sample, rat social recognition, and mouse two-trial inhibitory avoidance, and continued to improve cognitive performance at injection times when exposure levels continued to decline. Rats concurrently infused with ABT-107 and donepezil at steady-state levels consistent with clinical exposure showed improved short-term recognition memory. Compared with nicotine, ABT-107 did not produce behavioral sensitization in rats or exhibit psychomotor stimulant activity in mice. Repeated (3 days) daily dosing of ABT-107 increased extracellular cortical acetylcholine in rats, whereas acute administration increased cortical extracellular signal-regulated kinase and cAMP response element-binding protein phosphorylation in mice, neurochemical and biochemical events germane to cognitive function. ABT-107 increased cortical phosphorylation of the inhibitory residue (Ser9) of glycogen synthase kinase-3, a primary tau kinase associated with AD pathology. In addition, continuous infusion of ABT-107 in tau/amyloid precursor protein transgenic AD mice reduced spinal tau hyperphosphorylation. These findings show that targeting alpha7 nAChRs may have potential utility for symptomatic alleviation and slowing of disease progression in the treatment AD, and expand the understanding of the potential

  16. Desformylflustrabromine: A Novel Positive Allosteric Modulator for beta2 Subunit Containing Nicotinic Receptor Sub-Types.

    PubMed

    Pandya, Anshul A

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are ligand-gated transmembrane ion channels that are present at the neuromuscular junction and in different locations in the nervous system. The different subtypes of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors that are found in the brain are thought to be involved in many neurological processes such as pain, cognitive function and depression, as well as in the pathophysiology of numerous neurological diseases and conditions. While the neurotransmitter acetylcholine is an endogenous agonist for all nicotinic receptors subtypes, many drugs that act as agonists and antagonists have also been identified or developed for these receptors. In addition, a novel class of compounds described as allosteric modulators have also been identified or developed for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Allosteric modulators are ligands that bind to nicotinic receptors at sites other than the orthosteric site where acetylcholine binds. One such allosteric modulator is desformylflustrabromine. Five chemical analogs along with desformylflustrabromine act as positive allosteric modulator for nAChRs that contain the beta2 subunit in their pentameric structure. Here the discovery and development, medicinal chemistry and pharmacological actions of desformylflustrabromine have been discussed. Desformylflustrabromine and its chemical analogs have the potential to develop into clinically used drugs for neurological diseases and conditions where nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are involved. PMID:26818864

  17. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor (nAChR) Dependent Chorda Tympani Taste Nerve Responses to Nicotine, Ethanol and Acetylcholine

    PubMed Central

    Ren, Zuo Jun; Mummalaneni, Shobha; Qian, Jie; Baumgarten, Clive M.; DeSimone, John A.; Lyall, Vijay

    2015-01-01

    Nicotine elicits bitter taste by activating TRPM5-dependent and TRPM5-independent but neuronal nAChR-dependent pathways. The nAChRs represent common targets at which acetylcholine, nicotine and ethanol functionally interact in the central nervous system. Here, we investigated if the nAChRs also represent a common pathway through which the bitter taste of nicotine, ethanol and acetylcholine is transduced. To this end, chorda tympani (CT) taste nerve responses were monitored in rats, wild-type mice and TRPM5 knockout (KO) mice following lingual stimulation with nicotine free base, ethanol, and acetylcholine, in the absence and presence of nAChR agonists and antagonists. The nAChR modulators: mecamylamine, dihydro-β-erythroidine, and CP-601932 (a partial agonist of the α3β4* nAChR), inhibited CT responses to nicotine, ethanol, and acetylcholine. CT responses to nicotine and ethanol were also inhibited by topical lingual application of 8-chlorophenylthio (CPT)-cAMP and loading taste cells with [Ca2+]i by topical lingual application of ionomycin + CaCl2. In contrast, CT responses to nicotine were enhanced when TRC [Ca2+]i was reduced by topical lingual application of BAPTA-AM. In patch-clamp experiments, only a subset of isolated rat fungiform taste cells exposed to nicotine responded with an increase in mecamylamine-sensitive inward currents. We conclude that nAChRs expressed in a subset of taste cells serve as common receptors for the detection of the TRPM5-independent bitter taste of nicotine, acetylcholine and ethanol. PMID:26039516

  18. Qualitative assessment of IC50 values of inhibitors of the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor using a single chromatographic experiment and multivariate cluster analysis.

    PubMed

    Jozwiak, Krzysztof; Moaddel, Ruin; Yamaguchi, Rika; Ravichandran, Sarangan; Collins, Jack R; Wainer, Irving W

    2005-05-01

    It has been widely demonstrated that affinity chromatography can be used to derive binding affinities, and that these affinities can be correlated to data obtained using standard techniques such as membrane binding, ultrafiltration and equilibrium dialysis. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the use of immobilized nicotinic acetylcholine receptor stationary phase in chromatographic experiments to assess the functional activity of series of noncompetitive inhibitors (NCIs) as reflected in their IC50 values. Chromatographically determined retention values and computer generated molecular descriptors were obtained for 29 compounds and the data were analyzed by cluster analysis. The approach qualitatively ranked the test compounds as efficient NCIs (low IC50 values) or poor NCIs (high IC50 values). The data obtained with the 29 compounds used in this study demonstrate that the experimental approach had been able to place 25 of these compounds in the correct IC(50) clusters. To our knowledge, this is the first relationship established between chromatographic retention and IC50 for membrane-bound receptors. These results suggest that the chromatographic approach may be useful in development of lead drug candidates including the determination of off-target binding. PMID:15797535

  19. PRENATAL NICOTINE EXPOSURE SELECTIVELY AFFECTS NICOTINIC RECEPTOR EXPRESSION IN PRIMARY AND ASSOCIATIVE VISUAL CORTICES OF THE FETAL BABOON

    PubMed Central

    Duncan, Jhodie R.; Garland, Marianne; Stark, Raymond I.; Myers, Michael M.; Fifer, William P.; Mokler, David J.; Kinney, Hannah C.

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to nicotine during pregnancy via maternal cigarette smoking is associated with visual deficits in children. This is possibly due to activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the occipital cortex which are important in the development of visual mapping. Using a baboon model we explored the effects of prenatal nicotine on parameters in the primary and associated visual cortices. Pregnant baboons were infused with nicotine (0.5 mg/hr, i.v.) or saline from 86 days gestation. At 161 days gestation fetal brains were collected (n=5/group) and the occipital lobe assessed for nAChRs and markers of the serotonergic and catecholaminergic systems using tissue autoradiography and/or high performance liquid chromatography. Neuronal nAChRs and serotonergic markers were expressed in a region and subunit dependent manner. Prenatal nicotine exposure was associated with increased binding for 3H-epibatidine sensitive nAChRs in the primary visual cortex (BA 17) and BA 18, but not BA 19, of the associative visual cortex (p<0.05). Markers of the serotonergic or catecholaminergic systems were not significantly altered. Thus, prenatal nicotine exposure is associated with alterations in the cholinergic system in the occipital lobe which may aid in the explanation of the appearance of visual deficits in children from mothers who smoke during pregnancy. PMID:24903536

  20. Insights into docking and scoring neuronal alpha4beta2 nicotinic receptor agonists using molecular dynamics simulations and QM/MM calculations.

    PubMed

    Sgrignani, Jacopo; Bonaccini, Claudia; Grazioso, Giovanni; Chioccioli, Matteo; Cavalli, Andrea; Gratteri, Paola

    2009-11-30

    A combined quantum mechanical (QM)-polarized docking and molecular dynamics approach to study the binding mode and to predict the binding affinity of ligands acting at the alpha4beta2-nAChR is presented. The results obtained in this study indicate that the quantum mechanical/molecular mechanics docking protocol well describes the charge-driven interactions occurring in the binding of nicotinic agonists, and it is able to represent the polarization effects on the ligand exerted by the surrounding atoms of the receptor at the binding site. This makes it possible to properly score agonists of alpha4beta2-nAChR and to reproduce the experimental binding affinity data with good accuracy, within a mean error of 2.2 kcal/mol. Moreover, applying the QM-polarized docking to an ensemble of nAChR conformations obtained from MD simulations enabled us to accurately capture nAChR-ligand induced-fit effects. PMID:19360794

  1. Activation of α2A-Containing Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Mediates Nicotine-Induced Motor Output in Embryonic Zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Menelaou, Evdokia; Udvadia, Ava J.; Tanguay, Robert L.; Svoboda, Kurt R.

    2014-01-01

    It is well established that cholinergic signaling has critical roles during central nervous system development. In physiological and behavioral studies, activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors has been implicated in mediating cholinergic signaling. In developing spinal cord, cholinergic transmission is associated with neural circuits responsible for producing locomotor behaviors. In this study, we investigated the expression pattern of the α2A nAChR subunit as evidence from others suggested it could be expressed by spinal neurons. In situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry revealed that the α2A nAChR subunits are expressed in spinal Rohon-Beard (RB) neurons and olfactory sensory neurons in young embryos. In order to examine the functional role of the α2A nAChR subunit during embryogenesis, we blocked its expression using antisense modified oligonucleotides. Blocking the expression of α2A nAChR subunits had no effect on spontaneous motor activity. However, it did alter the embryonic nicotine-induced motor output. This reduction in motor activity was not accompanied by defects in neuronal and muscle elements associated with the motor output. Moreover, the anatomy and functionality of RB neurons was normal even in the absence of the α2A nAChR subunit. Thus, we propose that α2A-containing nAChR are dispensable for normal RB development. However, in the context of nicotine-induced motor output, α2A-containing nAChRs on RB neurons provide the substrate that nicotine acts upon to induce the motor output. These findings also indicate that functional neuronal nAChRs are present within spinal cord at the time when locomotor output in zebrafish first begins to manifest itself. PMID:24738729

  2. Cell-surface translational dynamics of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Barrantes, Francisco J.

    2014-01-01

    Synapse efficacy heavily relies on the number of neurotransmitter receptors available at a given time. In addition to the equilibrium between the biosynthetic production, exocytic delivery and recycling of receptors on the one hand, and the endocytic internalization on the other, lateral diffusion and clustering of receptors at the cell membrane play key roles in determining the amount of active receptors at the synapse. Mobile receptors traffic between reservoir compartments and the synapse by thermally driven Brownian motion, and become immobilized at the peri-synaptic region or the synapse by: (a) clustering mediated by homotropic inter-molecular receptor–receptor associations; (b) heterotropic associations with non-receptor scaffolding proteins or the subjacent cytoskeletal meshwork, leading to diffusional “trapping,” and (c) protein-lipid interactions, particularly with the neutral lipid cholesterol. This review assesses the contribution of some of these mechanisms to the supramolecular organization and dynamics of the paradigm neurotransmitter receptor of muscle and neuronal cells -the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR). Currently available information stemming from various complementary biophysical techniques commonly used to interrogate the dynamics of cell-surface components is critically discussed. The translational mobility of nAChRs at the cell surface differs between muscle and neuronal receptors in terms of diffusion coefficients and residence intervals at the synapse, which cover an ample range of time regimes. A peculiar feature of brain α7 nAChR is its ability to spend much of its time confined peri-synaptically, vicinal to glutamatergic (excitatory) and GABAergic (inhibitory) synapses. An important function of the α7 nAChR may thus be visiting the territories of other neurotransmitter receptors, differentially regulating the dynamic equilibrium between excitation and inhibition, depending on its residence time in each domain. PMID

  3. Nicotinic receptor modulation to treat alcohol and drug dependence

    PubMed Central

    Rahman, Shafiqur; Engleman, Eric A.; Bell, Richard L.

    2015-01-01

    Alcohol and drug dependence are serious public health problems worldwide. The prevalence of alcohol and drug dependence in the United States and other parts of the world is significant. Given the limitations in the efficacy of current pharmacotherapies to treat these disorders, research in developing alternative pharmacotherapies continues. Preclinical and clinical evidence thus far has indicated that brain nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are important pharmacological targets for the development of medications to treat alcohol and drug dependence. The nAChRs are a super family of ligand gated ion channels, and are expressed throughout the brain with twelve neuronal nAChR subunits (α2–α10 and β2–β4) identified. Here, we review preclinical and clinical evidence involving a number of nAChR ligands that target different nAChR subtypes in alcohol and nicotine addiction. The important ligands include cytisine, lobeline, mecamylamine, varenicline, sazetidine A and others that target α4β2* nAChR subtypes as small molecule modulators of the brain nicotinic cholinergic system are also discussed. Taken together, both preclinical and clinical data exist that support nAChR–based ligands as promising therapeutic agents for the treatment of alcohol and drug dependence. PMID:25642160

  4. CHARACTERIZATION OF NICOTINE ACETYLCHOLINE RECEPTOR SUBUNITS IN THE COCKROACH Periplaneta americana MUSHROOM BODIES REVEALS A STRONG EXPRESSION OF β1 SUBUNIT: INVOLVEMENT IN NICOTINE-INDUCED CURRENTS.

    PubMed

    Taillebois, Emiliane; Thany, Steeve H

    2016-09-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are ligand-gated ion channels expressed in many insect structures, such as mushroom bodies, in which they play a central role. We have recently demonstrated using electrophysiological recordings that different native nicotinic receptors are expressed in cockroach mushroom bodies Kenyon cells. In the present study, we demonstrated that eight genes coding for cockroach nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits are expressed in the mushroom bodies. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) experiments demonstrated that β1 subunit was the most expressed in the mushroom bodies. Moreover, antisense oligonucleotides performed against β1 subunit revealed that inhibition of β1 expression strongly decreases nicotine-induced currents amplitudes. Moreover, co-application with 0.5 μM α-bungarotoxin completely inhibited nicotine currents whereas 10 μM d-tubocurarine had a partial effect demonstrating that β1-containing neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes could be sensitive to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist α-bungarotoxin. PMID:27357353

  5. Targeting the interaction between fatty acid ethanolamides and nicotinic receptors: therapeutic perspectives.

    PubMed

    Melis, Miriam; Pistis, Marco

    2014-08-01

    Nicotine is one of the drugs of abuse that frequently causes addiction and relapse during abstinence. Nicotine's strong addicting properties reside in its ability to enhance dopamine transmission, and to induce specific changes in synaptic plasticity. Currently, approved therapies for smoking cessation increase the chances of remaining abstinent, but lack high levels of efficacy and are associated with significant adverse side effects. As a result, there is an urgent need for more effective antismoking medications. Studies have revealed that drugs targeting the peroxisome proliferator-activated-receptor-α (PPARα) show promise for the treatment of nicotine addiction. These drugs include synthetic PPARα ligands, such as the clinically available hypolipidemic fibrates, and drugs that increase levels of endogenous endocannabinoid-like fatty acid ethanolamides (FAEs) that act as PPARα agonists. In this review, we will discuss the specific interaction between PPARα and nicotine, and the molecular mechanisms whereby these intracellular receptors regulate nicotinic acetylcholine receptor functions in neurons. Modulation of neurophysiological, neurochemical and behavioral effects of nicotine by PPARα will be also reviewed. Indeed, a picture is emerging where FAEs are endogenous regulators of acetylcholine transmission. Notably, the implications of this specific cross talk extend beyond nicotine addiction, and might bear relevance for psychiatric disorders and epilepsy. PMID:24704146

  6. [Desensitization of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor].

    PubMed

    Quiñonez, M; Rojas, L

    1994-01-01

    In biological membranes, ionic channels act speeding up ion movements. Each ionic channel is excited by a specific stimulus (i.e. electric, mechanical, chemical, etc.). Chemically activated ionic channels (CAIC), such as the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), suffer desensitization when the receptor site is still occupied by the agonist molecule. The desensitized CAIC is a non functional channel state regarded as a particular case of receptors rundown. CAIC desensitization only involve reduced activity and not their membrane elimination. Desensitization is important to control synaptic transmission and the development of the nervous system. In this review we discuss results related to its production, modulation and some aspects associated to models that consider it. Finally, an approach combining molecular biology and electrophysiology techniques to understand desensitization and its importance in biological systems is presented. PMID:8525756

  7. Role of α5 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in Pharmacological and Behavioral Effects of Nicotine in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Marks, M. J.; Vann, R. E.; Chen, X.; Gamage, T. F.; Warner, J. A.; Damaj, M. I.

    2010-01-01

    Incorporation of the α5 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit can greatly influence nAChR function without altering receptor number. Although few animal studies have assessed the role of the α5 nAChR in nicotine-mediated behaviors, recent evidence suggests an association between polymorphisms in the α5 nAChR gene and nicotine dependence phenotypes in humans. Thus, additional studies are imperative to elucidate the role and function of the α5 nAChR subunit in nicotine dependence. Using α5(−/−) mice, the current study aimed to examine the role of α5 nAChRs in the initial pharmacological effects of nicotine, nicotine reward using the conditioned place preference model, and the discriminative effects of nicotine using a two-lever drug discrimination model. 86Rb+ efflux and 125I-epibatidine binding assays were conducted to examine the effect of α5 nAChR subunit deletion on expression and activity of functional nAChRs. Results show that α5(−/−) mice are less sensitive to the initial effects of nicotine in antinociception, locomotor activity, and hypothermia measures and that the α5 nAChR is involved in nicotine reward. Alternatively, α5(−/−) mice did not differ from wild-type littermates in sensitivity to the discriminative stimulus effects of nicotine. Furthermore, deletion of the α5 nAChR subunit resulted in a statistically significant decrease in function in the thalamus and hindbrain, but the decreases noted in spinal cord were not statistically significant. Receptor number was unaltered in all areas tested. Taken together, results of the study suggest that α5 nAChRs are involved in nicotine-mediated behaviors relevant to development of nicotine dependence. PMID:20400469

  8. Selective lesions of the cholinergic neurons within the posterior pedunculopontine do not alter operant learning or nicotine sensitization.

    PubMed

    MacLaren, Duncan A A; Wilson, David I G; Winn, Philip

    2016-04-01

    Cholinergic neurons within the pedunculopontine tegmental nucleus have been implicated in a range of functions, including behavioral state control, attention, and modulation of midbrain and basal ganglia systems. Previous experiments with excitotoxic lesions have found persistent learning impairment and altered response to nicotine following lesion of the posterior component of the PPTg (pPPTg). These effects have been attributed to disrupted input to midbrain dopamine systems, particularly the ventral tegmental area. The pPPTg contains a dense collection of cholinergic neurons and also large numbers of glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons. Because these interdigitated populations of neurons are all susceptible to excitotoxins, the effects of such lesions cannot be attributed to one neuronal population. We wished to assess whether the learning impairments and altered responses to nicotine in excitotoxic PPTg-lesioned rats were due to loss of cholinergic neurons within the pPPTg. Selective depletion of cholinergic pPPTg neurons is achievable with the fusion toxin Dtx-UII, which targets UII receptors expressed only by cholinergic neurons in this region. Rats bearing bilateral lesions of cholinergic pPPTg neurons (>90 % ChAT+ neuronal loss) displayed no deficits in the learning or performance of fixed and variable ratio schedules of reinforcement for pellet reward. Separate rats with the same lesions had a normal locomotor response to nicotine and furthermore sensitized to repeated administration of nicotine at the same rate as sham controls. Previously seen changes in these behaviors following excitotoxic pPPTg lesions cannot be attributed solely to loss of cholinergic neurons. These findings indicate that non-cholinergic neurons within the pPPTg are responsible for the learning deficits and altered responses to nicotine seen after excitotoxic lesions. The functions of cholinergic neurons may be related to behavioral state control and attention rather than learning

  9. Pesticide exposure during pregnancy, like nicotine, affects the brainstem α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression, increasing the risk of sudden unexplained perinatal death.

    PubMed

    Lavezzi, Anna Maria; Cappiello, Achille; Pusiol, Teresa; Corna, Melissa Felicita; Termopoli, Veronica; Matturri, Luigi

    2015-01-15

    This study indicates the impact of nicotine and pesticides (organochlorine and organophosphate insecticides used in agriculture) on neuronal α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression in brainstem regions receiving cholinergic projections in human perinatal life. An in-depth anatomopathological examination of the autonomic nervous system and immunohistochemistry to analyze the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression in the brainstem from 44 fetuses and newborns were performed. In addition, the presence of selected agricultural pesticides in cerebral cortex samples of the victims was determined by specific analytical procedures. Hypodevelopment of brainstem structures checking the vital functions, frequently associated with α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor immunopositivity and smoke absorption in pregnancy, was observed in high percentages of victims of sudden unexpected perinatal death. In nearly 30% of cases however the mothers never smoked, but lived in rural areas. The search for pesticides highlighted in many of these cases traces of both organochlorine and organophosphate pesticides. We detain that exposition to pesticides in pregnancy produces homologous actions to those of nicotine on neuronal α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, allowing to developmental alterations of brainstem vital centers in victims of sudden unexplained death. PMID:25433450

  10. The role of nicotinic receptor alpha 7 subunits in nicotine discrimination.

    PubMed

    Stolerman, I P; Chamberlain, S; Bizarro, L; Fernandes, C; Schalkwyk, L

    2004-03-01

    The subtypes of nicotinic receptors at which the behavioural effects of nicotine originate are not fully understood. The experiments described here use mice lacking the alpha7 subunit of nicotinic receptors to investigate the role of alpha7-containing receptors in nicotine discrimination. Wild-type and alpha7-knockout mice were trained in a two-lever nicotine discrimination procedure using a tandem schedule of food reinforcement. Mutant mice exhibited baseline rates of lever-pressing as low as 52.2% of rates in wild-type controls (n=21-24). Mutant and wild-type mice acquired discrimination of nicotine (0.4 or 0.8 mg/kg) at a similar rate (n=10-12) and reached similar final levels of accuracy (71.9 +/- 4.4% and 90.8 +/- 3.1% after 60 training sessions for 0.4 and 0.8 mg/kg training doses, respectively, in mutant mice, as compared with 75.0 +/- 6.5% and 87.6 +/- 4.8% for wild types). The genotypes exhibited similar steep dose-response curves for nicotine discrimination. In both genotypes, dose-response curves for mice trained with 0.8 mg/kg of nicotine were displaced three- to four-fold to the right as compared with those for the mice trained with the smaller dose. The predominant effect of nicotine on the overall rate of responding was a reduction at the largest doses tested and there was no difference between the genotypes. The results suggest that nicotinic receptors containing the alpha7 subunit do not contribute to the discriminative stimulus or response-rate-depressant effects of nicotine, although they may regulate baseline rates of operant responding. PMID:14975691

  11. Parazoanthoxanthin A blocks Torpedo nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Rozman, Klara Bulc; Araoz, Romulo; Sepcić, Kristina; Molgo, Jordi; Suput, Dusan

    2010-09-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are implicated in different nervous system-related disorders, and their modulation could improve existing therapy of these diseases. Parazoanthoxanthin A (ParaA) is a fluorescent pigment of the group of zoanthoxanthins. Since it is a potent acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, it may also bind to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). For this reason its effect on Torpedo nAChR (alpha1(2)betagammadelta) transplanted to Xenopus laevis oocytes was evaluated, using the voltage-clamp technique. ParaA dose-dependently reduced the acetylcholine-induced currents. This effect was fully reversible only at lower concentrations. ParaA also reduced the Hill coefficient and the time to peak current, indicating a channel blocking mode of action. On the other hand, the combined effect of ParaA and d-tubocurarine (d-TC) on acetylcholine-induced currents exhibited only partial additivity, assuming a competitive mode of action of ParaA on nAChR. These results indicate a dual mode of action of ParaA on the Torpedo AChR. PMID:20230806

  12. α6β2*-subtype nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are more sensitive than α4β2*-subtype receptors to regulation by chronic nicotine administration

    PubMed Central

    Marks, MJ; Grady, SR; Salminen, O; Paley, MA; Wageman, CR; McIntosh, JM; Whiteaker, P

    2014-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) of the α6β2* subtype (where * indicates the possible presence of additional subunits) are prominently expressed on dopaminergic neurons. Because of this, their role in tobacco use and nicotine dependence has received much attention. Previous studies have demonstrated that α6β2*-nAChR are downregulated following chronic nicotine exposure (unlike other subtypes that have been investigated – most prominently α4β2* nAChR). This study examines, for the first time, effects across a comprehensive chronic nicotine dose range. Chronic nicotine dose-responses and quantitative ligand-binding autoradiography were used to define nicotine sensitivity of changes in α4β2*-nAChR and α6β2*-nAChR expression. α6β2*-nAChR downregulation by chronic nicotine exposure in dopaminergic and optic-tract nuclei was ≈three-fold more sensitive than upregulation of α4β2*-nAChR. In contrast, nAChR-mediated [3H]-dopamine release from dopamine-terminal region synaptosomal preparations changed only in response to chronic treatment with high nicotine doses, while dopaminergic parameters (transporter expression and activity, dopamine receptor expression) were largely unchanged. Functional measures in olfactory tubercle preparations were made for the first time; both nAChR expression levels and nAChR-mediated functional measures changed differently between striatum and olfactory tubercles. These results show that functional changes measured using synaptosomal [3H]-DA release are primarily due to changes in nAChR, rather than in dopaminergic, function. PMID:24661093

  13. Effects of prenatal nicotine on expression of nicotine receptor subunits in the fetal brain

    PubMed Central

    Lv, Juanxiu; Mao, Caiping; Zhu, Liyan; Zhang, Hong; Pengpeng, Hui; Xu, Feichao; Liu, Yujuan; Zhang, Lubo; Xu, Zhice

    2008-01-01

    Previous studies have suggested that prenatal exposure to nicotine is associated with abnormal development in fetuses, including fetal brain damage. The present study determined the effect of maternal administration of nicotine during different gestational periods on brain nicotine receptor subunits in fetal rats. Subcutaneous injections of nicotine in maternal rats from the early and middle gestation decreased fetal blood PO2, increased fetal blood PCO2 and hemoglobin, and decreased fetal brain weight. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChRs) mRNA abundance in the fetal brain was significantly changed by prenatal treatment with nicotine during pregnancy. Fetal α2, α4, α7, and β2 units were significantly increased in the brain by prenatal exposure to nicotine in rat fetuses. However, the expression of mRNA of fetal brain α3, α5, β3, and β4 units were not changed. The results showed that prenatal nicotine can change the development of both α and β subunits of nAChRs in the fetal brain at gene level in association with restriction of fetal brain growth and in utero hypoxia. PMID:18541304

  14. Nicotine enhances murine airway contractile responses to kinin receptor agonists via activation of JNK- and PDE4-related intracellular pathways

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Nicotine plays an important role in cigarette-smoke-associated airway disease. The present study was designed to examine if nicotine could induce airway hyperresponsiveness through kinin receptors, and if so, explore the underlying mechanisms involved. Methods Murine tracheal segments were cultured for 1, 2 or 4 days in serum-free DMEM medium in presence of nicotine (1 and 10 μM) or vehicle (DMSO). Contractile responses induced by kinin B1 receptor agonist, des-Arg9-bradykinin, and B2 receptor agonist, bradykinin, were monitored with myographs. The B1 and B2 receptor mRNA expressions were semi-quantified using real-time PCR and their corresponding protein expressions assessed with confocal-microscopy-based immunohistochemistry. Various pharmacological inhibitors were used for studying intracellular signaling pathways. Results Four days of organ culture with nicotine concentration-dependently increased kinin B1 and B2 receptor-mediated airway contractions, without altering the kinin receptor-mediated relaxations. No such increase was seen at day 1 or day 2. The airway contractile responses to 5-HT, acetylcholine and endothelin receptor agonists remained unaffected by nicotine. Two different neuronal nicotinic receptor antagonists MG624 and hexamethonium blocked the nicotine-induced effects. The enhanced contractile responses were accompanied by increased mRNA and protein expression for both kinin receptors, suggesting the involvement of transcriptional mechanisms. Confocal-microscopy-based immunohistochemistry showed that 4 days of nicotine treatment induced activation (phosphorylation) of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), but not extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1 and 2 (ERK1/2) and p38. Inhibition of JNK with its specific inhibitor SP600125 abolished the nicotine-induced effects on kinin receptor-mediated contractions and reverted the enhanced receptor mRNA expression. Administration of phosphodiesterase inhibitors (YM976 and theophylline

  15. Conotoxins Targeting Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: An Overview

    PubMed Central

    Lebbe, Eline K. M.; Peigneur, Steve; Wijesekara, Isuru; Tytgat, Jan

    2014-01-01

    Marine snails of the genus Conus are a large family of predatory gastropods with an unparalleled molecular diversity of pharmacologically active compounds in their venom. Cone snail venom comprises of a rich and diverse cocktail of peptide toxins which act on a wide variety of ion channels such as voltage-gated sodium- (NaV), potassium- (KV), and calcium- (CaV) channels as well as nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) which are classified as ligand-gated ion channels. The mode of action of several conotoxins has been the subject of investigation, while for many others this remains unknown. This review aims to give an overview of the knowledge we have today on the molecular pharmacology of conotoxins specifically interacting with nAChRs along with the structure–function relationship data. PMID:24857959

  16. Flattening plasma corticosterone levels increases the prevalence of serotonergic dorsal raphe neurons inhibitory responses to nicotine in adrenalectomised rats.

    PubMed

    Frías-Domínguez, Carmen; Garduño, Julieta; Hernández, Salvador; Drucker-Colin, René; Mihailescu, Stefan

    2013-09-01

    Major depression is characterized by a diminished activity of the brain serotonergic system as well as by the flattening of plasma cortisol levels. Nicotine improves mood in patients with major depression and in experimentally depressed animals by increasing brain serotonin (5-HT), noradrenaline and dopamine levels. The present study was directed to determine if flattening plasma glucocorticoid levels changes nicotine's stimulatory effects upon 5-HT DRN neurons. The experiments were performed in brain slices obtained from rats previously (14 days) adrenalectomised and implanted subcutaneously with one pellet containing 75mg of corticosterone (Adx+CSR rats). Whole cell voltage and current clamp techniques were used to study the activity of immunocitochemically identified 5-HT DRN neurons. Administration of nicotine (1μM) in sham-operated animals produced stimulatory effects in all 5-HT DRN neurons studied. In Adx+CSR rats however, nicotine inhibited 75% of 5-HT DRN neurons and increased the potassium-dependent inward rectifying current. The inhibitory effect of nicotine upon 5-HT DRN neurons was dependent on serotonin release inside the DRN, since it was converted into a stimulatory response by the selective antagonist of 5-HT1A receptors N-[2-[4-(2-methoxyphenyl)-1-piperazinyl]ethyl]-N-(2-pyridyl)cyclohexanecarboxamide (WAY100635, 25nM). Adx+CSR rats also presented an increased function of 5-HT1A autoreceptors, since, in these rats, serotonin (1-10μM) produced a higher increase in the potassium dependent inward rectifying current in comparison with sham-operated animals. Serotonin release inside DRN was mediated by α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors since the selective antagonist of these receptors dihydro-β-erytroidine hydrobromide (DHβE, 100nM) blocked the inhibitory effects of nicotine 5-HT DRN neurons. These data indicate that, in the experimental model of adrenalectomised rats implanted with corticosterone pellets, nicotine increases the function of

  17. Roles of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor β subunits in function of human α4-containing nicotinic receptors

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Jie; Liu, Qiang; Yu, Kewei; Hu, Jun; Kuo, Yen-Ping; Segerberg, Marsha; St John, Paul A; Lukas, Ronald J

    2006-01-01

    Naturally expressed nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) containing α4 subunits (α4*-nAChR) in combination with β2 subunits (α4β2-nAChR) are among the most abundant, high-affinity nicotine binding sites in the mammalian brain. β4 subunits are also richly expressed and colocalize with α4 subunits in several brain regions implicated in behavioural responses to nicotine and nicotine dependence. Thus, α4β4-nAChR also may exist and play important functional roles. In this study, properties were determined of human α4β2- and α4β4-nAChR heterologously expressed de novo in human SH-EP1 epithelial cells. Whole-cell currents mediated via human α4β4-nAChR have ∼4-fold higher amplitude than those mediated via human α4β2-nAChR and exhibit much slower acute desensitization and functional rundown. Nicotinic agonists induce peak whole-cell current responses typically with higher functional potency at α4β4-nAChR than at α4β2-nAChR. Cytisine and lobeline serve as full agonists at α4β4-nAChR but are only partial agonists at α4β2-nAChR. However, nicotinic antagonists, except hexamethonium, have comparable affinities for functional α4β2- and α4β4-nAChR. Whole-cell current responses show stronger inward rectification for α4β2-nAChR than for α4β4-nAChR at a positive holding potential. Collectively, these findings demonstrate that human nAChR β2 or β4 subunits can combine with α4 subunits to generate two forms of α4*-nAChR with distinctive physiological and pharmacological features. Diversity in α4*-nAChR is of potential relevance to nervous system function, disease, and nicotine dependence. PMID:16825297

  18. Schizophrenia and the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Martin, Laura F; Freedman, Robert

    2007-01-01

    In addition to the devastating symptoms of psychosis, many people with schizophrenia also suffer from cognitive impairment. These cognitive symptoms lead to marked dysfunction and can impact employability, treatment adherence, and social skills. Deficits in P50 auditory gating are associated with attentional impairment and may contribute to cognitive symptoms and perceptual disturbances. This nicotinic cholinergic-mediated inhibitory process represents a potential new target for therapeutic intervention in schizophrenia. This chapter will review evidence implicating the nicotinic cholinergic, and specifically, the alpha7 nicotinic receptor system in the pathology of schizophrenia. Impaired auditory sensory gating has been linked to the alpha7 nicotinic receptor gene on the chromosome 15q14 locus. A majority of persons with schizophrenia are heavy smokers. Although nicotine can acutely reverse diminished auditory sensory gating in people with schizophrenia, this effect is lost on a chronic basis due to receptor desensitization. The alpha7 nicotinic agonist 3-(2,4 dimethoxy)benzylidene-anabaseine (DMXBA) can also enhance auditory sensory gating in animal models. DMXBA is well tolerated in humans and a new study in persons with schizophrenia has found that DMXBA enhances both P50 auditory gating and cognition. alpha7 Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists appear to be viable candidates for the treatment of cognitive disturbances in schizophrenia. PMID:17349863

  19. Developmental nicotine exposure enhances inhibitory synaptic transmission in motor neurons and interneurons critical for normal breathing.

    PubMed

    Jaiswal, Stuti J; Wollman, Lila Buls; Harrison, Caitlyn M; Pilarski, Jason Q; Fregosi, Ralph F

    2016-03-01

    Nicotine exposure in utero negatively affects neuronal growth, differentiation, and synaptogenesis. We used rhythmic brainstems slices and immunohistochemistry to determine how developmental nicotine exposure (DNE) alters inhibitory neurotransmission in two regions essential to normal breathing, the hypoglossal motor nucleus (XIIn), and preBötzinger complex (preBötC). We microinjected glycine or muscimol (GABAA agonist) into the XIIn or preBötC of rhythmic brainstem slices from neonatal rats while recording from XII nerve roots to obtain XII motoneuron population activity. Injection of glycine or muscimol into the XIIn reduced XII nerve burst amplitude, while injection into the preBötC altered nerve burst frequency. These responses were exaggerated in preparations from DNE animals. Quantitative immunohistochemistry revealed a significantly higher GABAA receptor density on XII motoneurons from DNE pups. There were no differences in GABAA receptor density in the preBötC, and there were no differences in glycine receptor expression in either region. Nicotine, in the absence of other chemicals in tobacco smoke, alters normal development of brainstem circuits that are critical for normal breathing. PMID:26097160

  20. Decreased nicotinic receptor availability in smokers with slow rates of nicotine metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Dubroff, Jacob G.; Doot, Robert K.; Falcone, Mary; R, Robert A. Schnoll; Ray, Riju; Tyndale, Rachel F.; Brody, Arthur L.; Hou, Catherine; Schmitz, Alexander; Lerman, Caryn

    2015-01-01

    The nicotine metabolite ratio (NMR), a stable measure of hepatic nicotine metabolism via the CYP2A6 pathway and total nicotine clearance, is a predictive biomarker of response to nicotine replacement therapy, with increased quit rates in slower metabolizers. Nicotine binds directly to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) to exert its psychoactive effects. This study examined the relationship between NMR and nAChR availability (α4β2* subtype) using positron emission tomography (PET) imaging of the radiotracer 2-18F-FA-85380 (2-18F-FA). Methods Twenty four smokers, 12 slow metabolizers (NMR <0.26) and 12 normal metabolizers (NMR ≥0.26), underwent 2-18F-FA-PET brain imaging following overnight nicotine abstinence (18 hours prior to scanning), using a validated bolus plus infusion protocol. Availability of nAChRs was compared between NMR groups in a priori volumes of interest (VOIs), with total distribution volume (VT/fP) being the measure of nAChR availability. Cravings to smoke were assessed prior to and following the scans. Results Thalamic nAChR α4β2* availability was significantly reduced in slow (versus normal) nicotine metabolizers (P=0.04). Slow metabolizers exhibited greater reductions in craving than normal metabolizers from pre- to post-scanning; however, craving was unrelated to availability. Conclusion The rate of nicotine metabolism is associated with thalamic nAChR availability. Additional studies could examine whether altered nAChR availability underlies differences in treatment response between slow and normal metabolizers of nicotine. PMID:26272810

  1. Role of the D3 dopamine receptor in nicotine sensitization.

    PubMed

    Smith, Laura N; Bachus, Susan E; McDonald, Craig G; Smith, Robert F

    2015-08-01

    Adolescent cigarette use is associated with reduced quitting success and continued smoking in adulthood. Interestingly, polymorphisms of the dopamine D3 receptor (DRD3) gene have been associated with smoking behavior, and the receptor is expressed in an age- and brain region-dependent manner that suggests relevance to addiction. Here, we investigate the possible role of dopamine-related receptors, including DRD3 and an intriguing splice variant known as D3nf, in nicotine-induced sensitization. In adolescent and adult male rats, we examined (1) alterations occurring in dopamine receptor-related mRNAs (DRD1, DRD2, DRD3 and D3nf) at two time points during a sensitizing regimen of nicotine and (2) whether DRD3 antagonism either during the initial treatment (induction) or at a later challenge exposure (expression) is able to block nicotine sensitization. Nicotine-induced changes were seen for DRD3 and D3nf mRNAs in the nucleus accumbens shell early in repeated exposure in both age groups. DRD3 antagonism only blocked the induction of sensitization in adolescents and did not block the expression of sensitization in either age group. Adolescents and adults showed opposite DRD1 mRNA responses to nicotine treatment, while no age- and nicotine-related changes in DRD2 mRNA were observed. These data reveal important age-dependent regulation of DRD1- and DRD3-related mRNAs during the course of nicotine exposure. Furthermore, they highlight a requirement for DRD3 signaling in the development of adolescent nicotine sensitization, suggesting it may represent an appropriate target in the prevention of nicotine dependence initiated at this age. PMID:25907750

  2. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors regulate type 1 inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor expression via calmodulin kinase IV activation.

    PubMed

    Mizuno, Koji; Kurokawa, Kazuhiro; Ohkuma, Seitaro

    2015-04-01

    Type 1 inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptors (IP3 R-1) are among the important calcium channels regulating intracellular Ca(2+) concentration in the central nervous system. In a previous study, we showed that drugs of abuse, such as cocaine, methamphetamine, and ethanol, induced IP3 R-1 upregulation via the calcium signal transduction pathway in psychological dependence. Although nicotine, a major component in tobacco smoke, participates in psychological and/or physical dependence, it has not yet been clarified how nicotine alters IP3 R-1 expression. The present study, therefore, seeks to clarify the mechanism bgy which nicotine modifies IP3 R-1 expression by using mouse cerebral cortical neurons in primary culture. Nicotine induced dose- and time-dependent upregulation of IP3 R-1 protein following its mRNA increase, and the latter was significantly suppressed by a nonselective nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) antagonist, mecamylamine. Both cFos and phosphorylated-cJun (p-cJun) were immediately increased in the nucleus, together with an increase of calmodulin kinase (CaMK) IV but not CaMKII expression after nicotine exposure. A nonselective inhibitor of CaMKs, KN-93, and a calcium chelating regent, BAPTA-AM, completely suppressed the expression of cFos and p-cJun in the nucleus as well as the nicotine-induced IP3 R-1 upregulation. These results indicate that nAChR activation by nicotine upregulates IP3 R-1 via increase of activator protein-1, which is a cFos and cJun dimmer, in the nucleus, with activation of Ca(2+) signaling transduction processes. PMID:25430056

  3. Disruption of nicotine conditioning by dopamine D(3) receptor ligands.

    PubMed

    Le Foll, B; Schwartz, J-C; Sokoloff, P

    2003-02-01

    Tobacco smoking is the first cause of preventable death in modern countries. Nicotine replacement therapy or sustained release bupropion helps smoking cessation, but relapse rates are still very high. Nicotine, like other drugs of abuse, activates the dopamine mesolimbic system, which originates in the ventral tegmental area and projects notably to the nucleus accumbens. Situations or environmental stimuli previously associated with cigarette smoking, for example, smell of cigarette smoke, can elicit craving in abstinent smokers and promote relapse. Reducing the effects of nicotine-associated cues might therefore have potential therapeutic utility for smoking cessation. Such an approach has been validated for cocaine in animals, by using the dopamine D(3) receptor-selective partial agonist BP 897, which inhibits cocaine cue-induced drug-seeking behavior. Here we show that rats repeatedly injected with nicotine in a particular environment develop nicotine-conditioned locomotor responses, accompanied by an increase in D(3) receptor expression in the nucleus accumbens. This conditioned behavior was inhibited by BP 897 or a selective D(3) receptor antagonist, suggesting that antagonizing dopamine selectively at the D(3) receptor disrupts nicotine-conditioned effects and might represent a novel therapeutic approach for smoking cessation. PMID:12610655

  4. Spectral Confocal Imaging of Fluorescently tagged Nicotinic Receptors in Knock-in Mice with Chronic Nicotine Administration

    PubMed Central

    Renda, Anthony; Nashmi, Raad

    2012-01-01

    Ligand-gated ion channels in the central nervous system (CNS) are implicated in numerous conditions with serious medical and social consequences. For instance, addiction to nicotine via tobacco smoking is a leading cause of premature death worldwide (World Health Organization) and is likely caused by an alteration of ion channel distribution in the brain1. Chronic nicotine exposure in both rodents and humans results in increased numbers of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in brain tissue1-3. Similarly, alterations in the glutamatergic GluN1 or GluA1 channels have been implicated in triggering sensitization to other addictive drugs such as cocaine, amphetamines and opiates4-6. Consequently, the ability to map and quantify distribution and expression patterns of specific ion channels is critically important to understanding the mechanisms of addiction. The study of brain region-specific effects of individual drugs was advanced by the advent of techniques such as radioactive ligands. However, the low spatial resolution of radioactive ligand binding prevents the ability to quantify ligand-gated ion channels in specific subtypes of neurons. Genetically encoded fluorescent reporters, such as green fluorescent protein (GFP) and its many color variants, have revolutionized the field of biology7.By genetically tagging a fluorescent reporter to an endogenous protein one can visualize proteins in vivo7-10. One advantage of fluorescently tagging proteins with a probe is the elimination of antibody use, which have issues of nonspecificity and accessibility to the target protein. We have used this strategy to fluorescently label nAChRs, which enabled the study of receptor assembly using Förster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) in transfected cultured cells11.More recently, we have used the knock-in approach to engineer mice with yellow fluorescent protein tagged α4 nAChR subunits (α4YFP), enabling precise quantification of the receptor ex vivo at submicrometer

  5. Exposure to nicotine increases nicotinic acetylcholine receptor density in the reward pathway and binge ethanol consumption in C57BL/6J adolescent female mice.

    PubMed

    Locker, Alicia R; Marks, Michael J; Kamens, Helen M; Klein, Laura Cousino

    2016-05-01

    Nearly 80% of adult smokers begin smoking during adolescence. Binge alcohol consumption is also common during adolescence. Past studies report that nicotine and ethanol activate dopamine neurons in the reward pathway and may increase synaptic levels of dopamine in the nucleus accumbens through nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) stimulation. Activation of the reward pathway during adolescence through drug use may produce neural alterations affecting subsequent drug consumption. Consequently, the effect of nicotine exposure on binge alcohol consumption was examined along with an assessment of the neurobiological underpinnings that drive adolescent use of these drugs. Adolescent C57BL/6J mice (postnatal days 35-44) were exposed to either water or nicotine (200μg/ml) for ten days. On the final four days, ethanol intake was examined using the drinking-in-the-dark paradigm. Nicotine-exposed mice consumed significantly more ethanol and displayed higher blood ethanol concentrations than did control mice. Autoradiographic analysis of nAChR density revealed higher epibatidine binding in frontal cortical regions in mice exposed to nicotine and ethanol compared to mice exposed to ethanol only. These data show that nicotine exposure during adolescence increases subsequent binge ethanol consumption, and may affect the number of nAChRs in regions of the brain reward pathway, specifically the frontal cortex. PMID:26428091

  6. New quinoline derivatives as nicotinic receptor modulators.

    PubMed

    Manetti, Dina; Bellucci, Cristina; Dei, Silvia; Teodori, Elisabetta; Varani, Katia; Spirova, Ekaterina; Kudryavtsev, Denis; Shelukhina, Irina; Tsetlin, Victor; Romanelli, Maria Novella

    2016-03-01

    As a continuation of previous work on quinoline derivatives, which showed some preference (2-3 times) for the α7 with respect to α4β2 acetylcholine nicotinic receptors (nAChRs), we synthesized a series of novel azabicyclic or diazabicyclic compounds carrying a quinoline or isoquinoline ring, with the aim of searching for more selective α7 nAChR compounds. Radioligand binding studies on α7* and α4β2* nAChRs (rat brain homogenate) revealed one compound (7) with a 2-fold higher affinity for the α4β2*-subtype, and four compounds (11, 13, 14 and 16) with at least 3-fold higher affinity for α7* nAChR. The most promising was 11, showing Ki∼100 nM and over 10-fold selectivity for α7* nAChR. Compounds 7, 11, 13 and 16 at 50 μM suppressed ion currents induced in the rat α4β2 nAChR and the chimeric nAChR composed of the ligand-binding domain of the chick α7 and transmembrane domain of the α1 glycine receptor, expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Calcium imaging experiments on the human α7 nAChR expressed in the Neuro2a cells and potentiated by PNU-120596 confirmed the antagonistic activity for 7; on the contrary, 11, 13 and 16 were agonists with the EC50 values in the range of 1.0-1.6 μM. Thus, the introduced modifications allowed us to enhance the selectivity of quinolines towards α7 nAChR and to get novel compounds with agonistic activity. PMID:26840365

  7. Evaluation of the Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor-Associated Proteome at Baseline and Following Nicotine Exposure in Human and Mouse Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Esterlis, Irina; Stone, Kathryn L.; Grady, Sharon R.; Lindstrom, Jon M.; Marks, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) support the initiation and maintenance of smoking, but the long-term changes occurring in the protein complex as a result of smoking and the nicotine in tobacco are not known. Human studies and animal models have also demonstrated that increasing cholinergic tone increases behaviors related to depression, suggesting that the nAChR-associated proteome could be altered in individuals with mood disorders. We therefore immunopurified nAChRs and associated proteins for quantitative proteomic assessment of changes in protein–protein interactions of high-affinity nAChRs containing the β2 subunit (β2*-nAChRs) from either cortex of mice treated with saline or nicotine, or postmortem human temporal cortex tissue from tobacco-exposed and nonexposed individuals, with a further comparison of diagnosed mood disorder to control subjects. We observed significant effects of nicotine exposure on the β2*-nAChR-associated proteome in human and mouse cortex, particularly in the abundance of the nAChR subunits themselves, as well as putative interacting proteins that make up core components of neuronal excitability (Na/K ATPase subunits), presynaptic neurotransmitter release (syntaxins, SNAP25, synaptotagmin), and a member of a known nAChR protein chaperone family (14-3-3ζ). These findings identify candidate-signaling proteins that could mediate changes in cholinergic signaling via nicotine or tobacco use. Further analysis of identified proteins will determine whether these interactions are essential for primary function of nAChRs at presynaptic terminals. The identification of differences in the nAChR-associated proteome and downstream signaling in subjects with various mood disorders may also identify novel etiological mechanisms and reveal new treatment targets. PMID:27559543

  8. Evaluation of the Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor-Associated Proteome at Baseline and Following Nicotine Exposure in Human and Mouse Cortex.

    PubMed

    McClure-Begley, Tristan D; Esterlis, Irina; Stone, Kathryn L; Lam, TuKiet T; Grady, Sharon R; Colangelo, Christopher M; Lindstrom, Jon M; Marks, Michael J; Picciotto, Marina R

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) support the initiation and maintenance of smoking, but the long-term changes occurring in the protein complex as a result of smoking and the nicotine in tobacco are not known. Human studies and animal models have also demonstrated that increasing cholinergic tone increases behaviors related to depression, suggesting that the nAChR-associated proteome could be altered in individuals with mood disorders. We therefore immunopurified nAChRs and associated proteins for quantitative proteomic assessment of changes in protein-protein interactions of high-affinity nAChRs containing the β2 subunit (β2*-nAChRs) from either cortex of mice treated with saline or nicotine, or postmortem human temporal cortex tissue from tobacco-exposed and nonexposed individuals, with a further comparison of diagnosed mood disorder to control subjects. We observed significant effects of nicotine exposure on the β2*-nAChR-associated proteome in human and mouse cortex, particularly in the abundance of the nAChR subunits themselves, as well as putative interacting proteins that make up core components of neuronal excitability (Na/K ATPase subunits), presynaptic neurotransmitter release (syntaxins, SNAP25, synaptotagmin), and a member of a known nAChR protein chaperone family (14-3-3ζ). These findings identify candidate-signaling proteins that could mediate changes in cholinergic signaling via nicotine or tobacco use. Further analysis of identified proteins will determine whether these interactions are essential for primary function of nAChRs at presynaptic terminals. The identification of differences in the nAChR-associated proteome and downstream signaling in subjects with various mood disorders may also identify novel etiological mechanisms and reveal new treatment targets. PMID:27559543

  9. Isotopic rubidium ion efflux assay for the functional characterization of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on clonal cell lines

    SciTech Connect

    Lukas, R.J.; Cullen, M.J.

    1988-11-15

    An isotopic rubidium ion efflux assay has been developed for the functional characterization of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on cultured neurons. This assay first involves the intracellular sequestration of isotopic potassium ion analog by the ouabain-sensitive action of a sodium-potassium ATPase. Subsequently, the release of isotopic rubidium ion through nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-coupled monovalent cation channels is activated by application of nicotinic agonists. Specificity of receptor-mediated efflux is demonstrated by its sensitivity to blockade by nicotinic, but not muscarinic, antagonists. The time course of agonist-mediated efflux, within the temporal limitations of the assay, indicates a slow inactivation of receptor function on prolonged exposure to agonist. Dose-response profiles (i) have characteristic shapes for different nicotinic agonists, (ii) are described by three operationally defined parameters, and (iii) reflect different affinities of agonists for binding sites that control receptor activation and functional inhibition. The rubidium ion efflux assay provides fewer hazards but greater sensitivity and resolution than isotopic sodium or rubidium ion influx assays for functional nicotinic receptors.

  10. Orthosteric and Allosteric Ligands of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors for Smoking Cessation

    PubMed Central

    Mohamed, Tasnim S.; Jayakar, Selwyn S.; Hamouda, Ayman K.

    2015-01-01

    Nicotine addiction, the result of tobacco use, leads to over six million premature deaths world-wide per year, a number that is expected to increase by a third within the next two decades. While more than half of smokers want and attempt to quit, only a small percentage of smokers are able to quit without pharmacological interventions. Therefore, over the past decades, researchers in academia and the pharmaceutical industry have focused their attention on the development of more effective smoking cessation therapies, which is now a growing 1.9 billion dollar market. Because the role of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) in nicotine addiction is well established, nAChR based therapeutics remain the leading strategy for smoking cessation. However, the development of neuronal nAChR drugs that are selective for a nAChR subpopulation is challenging, and only few neuronal nAChR drugs are clinically available. Among the many neuronal nAChR subtypes that have been identified in the brain, the α4β2 subtype is the most abundant and plays a critical role in nicotine addiction. Here, we review the role of neuronal nAChRs, especially the α4β2 subtype, in the development and treatment of nicotine addiction. We also compare available smoking cessation medications and other nAChR orthosteric and allosteric ligands that have been developed with emphasis on the difficulties faced in the development of clinically useful compounds with high nAChR subtype selectivity. PMID:26635524

  11. Functional interaction between Lypd6 and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Arvaniti, Maria; Jensen, Majbrit M; Soni, Neeraj; Wang, Hong; Klein, Anders B; Thiriet, Nathalie; Pinborg, Lars H; Muldoon, Pretal P; Wienecke, Jacob; Imad Damaj, M; Kohlmeier, Kristi A; Gondré-Lewis, Marjorie C; Mikkelsen, Jens D; Thomsen, Morten S

    2016-09-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) affect multiple physiological functions in the brain and their functions are modulated by regulatory proteins of the Lynx family. Here, we report for the first time a direct interaction of the Lynx protein LY6/PLAUR domain-containing 6 (Lypd6) with nAChRs in human brain extracts, identifying Lypd6 as a novel regulator of nAChR function. Using protein cross-linking and affinity purification from human temporal cortical extracts, we demonstrate that Lypd6 is a synaptically enriched membrane-bound protein that binds to multiple nAChR subtypes in the human brain. Additionally, soluble recombinant Lypd6 protein attenuates nicotine-induced hippocampal inward currents in rat brain slices and decreases nicotine-induced extracellular signal-regulated kinase phosphorylation in PC12 cells, suggesting that binding of Lypd6 is sufficient to inhibit nAChR-mediated intracellular signaling. We further show that perinatal nicotine exposure in rats (4 mg/kg/day through minipumps to dams from embryonic day 7 to post-natal day 21) significantly increases Lypd6 protein levels in the hippocampus in adulthood, which did not occur after exposure to nicotine in adulthood only. Our findings suggest that Lypd6 is a versatile inhibitor of cholinergic signaling in the brain, and that Lypd6 is dysregulated by nicotine exposure during early development. Regulatory proteins of the Lynx family modulate the function of nicotinic receptors (nAChRs). We report for the first time that the Lynx protein Lypd6 binds to nAChRs in human brain extracts, and that recombinant Lypd6 decreases nicotine-induced ERK phosphorylation and attenuates nicotine-induced hippocampal inward currents. Our findings suggest that Lypd6 is a versatile inhibitor of cholinergic signaling in the brain. PMID:27344019

  12. Inhibitory Learning is Modulated by Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, Heidi C.; Putney, Rachel B.; Bucci, David J.

    2014-01-01

    Prior research has established that stimulating nicotinic acetylcholine receptors can facilitate learning and memory. However, most studies have focused on learning to emit a particular behavior, while little is known about the effects of nicotine on learning to withhold a behavioral response. The present study consisted of a dose response analysis of the effects of nicotine on negative occasion setting, a form of learned inhibition. In this paradigm, rats received one type of training trial in which presentation of a tone by itself was followed immediately by food reward. During the other type of trials, the tone was preceded by presentation of a light and no food was delivered after the tone. Rats gradually learned to approach the cup in anticipation of receiving food reward during presentations of the tone alone, but withheld that behavior when the tone was preceded by the light. Nicotine (0.35mg/kg) facilitated negative occasion setting by reducing the number of sessions needed to learn the discrimination between trial types and by reducing the rate of responding on non-reinforced trials. Nicotine also increased the orienting response to the light, suggesting that nicotine may have affected the ability to withhold food cup behavior on non-reinforced trials by increasing attention to the light. In contrast to the effects of nicotine, rats treated with mecamylamine (0.125, 0.5, or 2 mg/kg) needed more training sessions to discriminate between reinforced and non-reinforced trials compared to saline-treated rats. The findings indicate that nicotinic acetylcholine receptors may be active during negative occasion setting and that nicotine can potentiate learned inhibition. PMID:25445487

  13. The α3β4* nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtype mediates nicotine reward and physical nicotine withdrawal signs independently of the α5 subunit in the mouse

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Kia J.; Sanjakdar, Sarah S.; Muldoon, Pretal P.; McIntosh, J. Michael; Damaj, M. Imad

    2013-01-01

    The 15q25 gene cluster contains genes that code for the α5, α3, and β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChRs) subunits, and in human genetic studies, has shown the most robust association with smoking behavior and nicotine dependence to date. The limited available animal studies implicate a role for the α5 and β4 nAChR subunits in nicotine dependence and withdrawal; however studies focusing on the behavioral role of the α3β4* nAChR receptor subtype in nicotine dependence are lacking. Because of the apparent role of the α3β4* nAChR subtype in nicotine dependence, the goal of the current study was to better evaluate the involvement of this subtype in nicotine mediated behavioral responses. Using the selective α3β4* nAChR antagonist, α-conotoxin AuIB, we assessed the role of α3β4* nAChRs in acute nicotine, nicotine reward, and physical and affective nicotine withdrawal. Because α5 has also been implicated in nicotine dependence behaviors in mice and can form functional receptors with α3β4*, we also evaluated the role of the α3β4α5* nAChR subtype in nicotine reward and somatic nicotine withdrawal signs by blocking the α3β4* nAChR subtype in α5 nAChR knockout mice with AuIB. AuIB had no significant effect on acute nicotine behaviors, but dose-dependently attenuated nicotine reward and physical withdrawal signs, with no significant effect in affective withdrawal measures. Interestingly, AuIB also attenuated nicotine reward and somatic signs in α5 nAChR knockout mice. This study shows that α3β4* nAChRs mediate nicotine reward and physical nicotine withdrawal, but not acute nicotine behaviors or affective nicotine withdrawal signs in mice. The α5 subunit is not required in the receptor assembly to mediate these effects. Our findings suggest an important role for the α3β4* nAChR subtype in nicotine reward and physical aspects of the nicotine withdrawal syndrome. PMID:23416040

  14. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated GABAergic inputs to cholinergic interneurons in the striosomes and the matrix compartments of the mouse striatum.

    PubMed

    Inoue, Ritsuko; Suzuki, Takeo; Nishimura, Kinya; Miura, Masami

    2016-06-01

    The striatum consists of two neurochemically distinct compartments: the striosomes (or patches) and the extrastriosomal matrix. Although striatal neurons are strongly innervated by intrinsic cholinergic interneurons, acetylcholinesterase is expressed more abundantly in the matrix than in the striosomes. At present, little is known about the different cholinergic functions of the striatal compartments. In this study, we examined gamma-aminobutyric acidergic (GABAergic) inputs to cholinergic interneurons in both compartments. We found that nicotinic receptor-mediated GABAergic responses were evoked more frequently in the matrix than in the striosomes. Furthermore, a single action potential of cholinergic neurons induced nicotinic receptor-mediated GABAergic inputs to the cholinergic neurons themselves, suggesting mutual connections that shape the temporal firing pattern of cholinergic neurons. The nicotinic receptor-mediated GABAergic responses were attenuated by continuous application of acetylcholine or the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor eserine and were enhanced by desformylflustrabromine, a positive allosteric modulator of the α4β2 subunit containing a nicotinic receptor. These results suggest that the nicotinic impact on the GABAergic responses are not uniform despite the massive and continuous cholinergic innervation. It has been reported that differential activation of neurons in the striosomes and the matrix produce a repetitive behavior called stereotypy. Drugs acting on α4β2 nicotinic receptors might provide potential tools for moderating the imbalanced activities between the compartments. PMID:26808315

  15. Transcription factor assembly on the nicotinic receptor beta4 subunit gene promoter.

    PubMed

    Scofield, Michael D; Brüschweiler-Li, Lei; Mou, Zhongming; Gardner, Paul D

    2008-04-16

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are involved in a plethora of fundamental biological processes ranging from muscle contraction to formation of memories. The receptors are pentameric proteins whose subunits are encoded by distinct genes. Subunit composition of a mature nicotinic receptor is governed in part by the transcriptional regulation of each subunit gene. Here, using chromatin immunoprecipitation assays, we report the interaction of the transcription factors Sp1, Sp3, c-Jun and Sox10 with the beta4 subunit gene promoter in neuronal-like cell lines and rodent brain tissue. Our results corroborate previous in-vitro data demonstrating that these transcription factors interact with the beta4 promoter. Taken together, these data suggest that Sp1, Sp3, c-Jun and Sox10 regulate expression of the beta4 subunit gene in the mammalian brain. PMID:18382288

  16. Multiple cholinergic nicotinic receptor genes affect nicotine dependence risk in African and European Americans

    PubMed Central

    Saccone, Nancy L.; Schwantes-An, Tae-Hwi; Wang, Jen C.; Grucza, Richard A.; Breslau, Naomi; Hatsukami, Dorothy; Johnson, Eric O.; Rice, John P.; Goate, Alison M.; Bierut, Laura J.

    2010-01-01

    Several independent studies show that the chromosome 15q25.1 region, which contains the CHRNA5-CHRNA3-CHRNB4 gene cluster, harbors variants strongly associated with nicotine dependence, other smoking behaviors, lung cancer, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. We investigated whether variants in other cholinergic nicotinic receptor subunit (CHRN) genes affect risk for nicotine dependence in a new sample of African-Americans (N = 710). We also analyzed this African-American sample together with a European-American sample (N=2062, 1608 of which have been previously studied), allowing for differing effects in the two populations. Cases are current nicotine-dependent smokers and controls are non-dependent smokers. Variants in or near CHRND-CHRNG, CHRNA7, and CHRNA10 show modest association with nicotine dependence risk in the African-American sample. In addition, CHRNA4, CHRNB3-CHRNA6, and CHRNB1 show association in at least one population. CHRNG and CHRNA4 harbor SNPs that have opposite directions of effect in the two populations. In each of the population samples, these loci substantially increase the trait variation explained, although no loci meet Bonferroni-corrected significance in the African-American sample alone. The trait variation explained by three key associated SNPs in CHRNA5-CHRNA3-CHRNB4 is 1.9% in European-Americans and also 1.9% in African-Americans; this increases to 4.5% in EAs and 7.3% in AAs when we add six variants representing associations at other CHRN genes. Multiple nicotinic receptor subunit genes outside of chromosome 15q25 are likely to be important in the biological processes and development of nicotine dependence, and some of these risks may be shared across diverse populations. PMID:20584212

  17. Modal gating of muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vij, Ridhima

    Many ion channels exhibit multiple patterns of kinetic activity in single-channel currents. This behavior is rare in WT mouse muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs), where A2C↔A2O gating events are well-described by single exponentials. Also, single-channel open probability (PO) is essentially homogeneous at a given agonist concentration in the WT receptors. Here I report that perturbations of almost all the residues in loop C (alpha188-alpha199, at the agonist binding site) generate heterogeneity in PO ('modes'). Such unsettled activity was apparent with an alanine substitution at all positions in loop C (except alphaY190 and alphaY198) and with different side chain substitutions at alphaP197 for both adult- and fetal-type AChRs. I used single channel electrophysiology along with site-directed mutagenesis to study modal gating in AChRs consequent to mutations/deletions in loop C. The multiple patterns of kinetic activity arose from the difference in agonist affinity rather than in intrinsic AChR gating. Out of the four different agonists used to study the modal behavior, acetylcholine (ACh) showed a higher degree of kinetic heterogeneity compared to others. The time constant for switching between modes was long (~mins), suggesting that they arise from alternative, stable protein conformations. By studying AChRs having only 1 functional binding site, I attempted to find the source of the affinity difference, which was traced mainly to the alphadelta agonist site. Affinity at the neurotransmitter binding site is mainly determined by a core of five aromatic residues (alphaY93, alphaW149, alphaY190, alphaY198 and deltaW57). Phenylalanine substitutions at all aromatic residues except alphaY93 resulted in elimination of modes. Modes were also eliminated by alanine mutation at deltaW57 on the complementary side but not at other aromatics. Also, by substituting four gamma subunit residues into the delta subunit on the complementary beta sheet, I found that

  18. Electrophysiology-Based Assays to Detect Subtype-Selective Modulation of Human Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Kirsch, Glenn E.; Fedorov, Nikolai B.; Kuryshev, Yuri A.; Liu, Zhiqi; Orr, Michael S.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-31) gave the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the responsibility for regulating tobacco products. Nicotine is the primary addictive component of tobacco and its effects can be modulated by additional ingredients in manufactured products. Nicotine acts by mimicking the neurotransmitter acetylcholine on neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), which function as ion channels in cholinergic modulation of neurotransmission. Subtypes within the family of neuronal nAChRs are defined by their α- and β-subunit composition. The subtype-selective profiles of tobacco constituents are largely unknown, but could be essential for understanding the physiological effects of tobacco products. In this report, we report the development and validation of electrophysiology-based high-throughput screens (e-HTS) for human nicotinic subtypes, α3β4, α3β4α5, α4β2, and α7 stably expressed in Chinese Hamster Ovary cells. Assessment of agonist sensitivity and acute desensitization gave results comparable to those obtained by conventional manual patch clamp electrophysiology assays. The potency of reference antagonists for inhibition of the receptor channels and selectivity of positive allosteric modulators also were very similar between e-HTS and conventional manual patch voltage clamp data. Further validation was obtained in pilot screening of a library of FDA-approved drugs that identified α7 subtype-selective positive allosteric modulation by novel compounds. These assays provide new tools for profiling of nicotinic receptor selectivity. PMID:27505073

  19. Electrophysiology-Based Assays to Detect Subtype-Selective Modulation of Human Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors.

    PubMed

    Kirsch, Glenn E; Fedorov, Nikolai B; Kuryshev, Yuri A; Liu, Zhiqi; Armstrong, Lucas C; Orr, Michael S

    2016-08-01

    The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-31) gave the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the responsibility for regulating tobacco products. Nicotine is the primary addictive component of tobacco and its effects can be modulated by additional ingredients in manufactured products. Nicotine acts by mimicking the neurotransmitter acetylcholine on neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), which function as ion channels in cholinergic modulation of neurotransmission. Subtypes within the family of neuronal nAChRs are defined by their α- and β-subunit composition. The subtype-selective profiles of tobacco constituents are largely unknown, but could be essential for understanding the physiological effects of tobacco products. In this report, we report the development and validation of electrophysiology-based high-throughput screens (e-HTS) for human nicotinic subtypes, α3β4, α3β4α5, α4β2, and α7 stably expressed in Chinese Hamster Ovary cells. Assessment of agonist sensitivity and acute desensitization gave results comparable to those obtained by conventional manual patch clamp electrophysiology assays. The potency of reference antagonists for inhibition of the receptor channels and selectivity of positive allosteric modulators also were very similar between e-HTS and conventional manual patch voltage clamp data. Further validation was obtained in pilot screening of a library of FDA-approved drugs that identified α7 subtype-selective positive allosteric modulation by novel compounds. These assays provide new tools for profiling of nicotinic receptor selectivity. PMID:27505073

  20. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes involved in facilitation of GABAergic inhibition in mouse superficial superior colliculus.

    PubMed

    Endo, Toshiaki; Yanagawa, Yuchio; Obata, Kunihiko; Isa, Tadashi

    2005-12-01

    The superficial superior colliculus (sSC) is a key station in the sensory processing related to visual salience. The sSC receives cholinergic projections from the parabigeminal nucleus, and previous studies have revealed the presence of several different nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits in the sSC. In this study, to clarify the role of the cholinergic inputs to the sSC, we examined current responses induced by ACh in GABAergic and non-GABAergic sSC neurons using in vitro slice preparations obtained from glutamate decarboxylase 67-green fluorescent protein (GFP) knock-in mice in which GFP is specifically expressed in GABAergic neurons. Brief air pressure application of acetylcholine (ACh) elicited nicotinic inward current responses in both GABAergic and non-GABAergic neurons. The inward current responses in the GABAergic neurons were highly sensitive to a selective antagonist for alpha3beta2- and alpha6beta2-containing receptors, alpha-conotoxin MII (alphaCtxMII). A subset of these neurons exhibited a faster alpha-bungarotoxin-sensitive inward current component, indicating the expression of alpha7-containing nAChRs. We also found that the activation of presynaptic nAChRs induced release of GABA, which elicited a burst of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents mediated by GABA(A) receptors in non-GABAergic neurons. This ACh-induced GABA release was mediated mainly by alphaCtxMII-sensitive nAChRs and resulted from the activation of voltage-dependent calcium channels. Morphological analysis revealed that recorded GFP-positive neurons are interneurons and GFP-negative neurons include projection neurons. These findings suggest that nAChRs are involved in the regulation of GABAergic inhibition and modulate visual processing in the sSC. PMID:16107532

  1. Identification, characterization, and regulation of a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor on bovine adrenal chromaffin cells in culture

    SciTech Connect

    Higgins, L.S.

    1988-01-01

    Synaptic input to bovine adrenal chromaffin cells is mediated by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) and results in secretion of catecholamines. Three probes previously shown to recognize AChRs on neurons were used to identify the AChR on bovine adrenal chromaffin cells in culture: monoclonal antibody mAb 35, a toxin that blocks receptor function, and the agonist nicotine. Competition for {sup 3}H-nicotine binding was used to measure the affinity of cholinergic ligands, and revealed the pharmacological profile expected for a neuronal-type AChR. At steady state the rate both of receptor insertion into and loss from the plasma membrane is about 3%/hour, resulting in a half-life in the surface of about 24 hours. Exposure to the anti-AChR antibody results in a loss of AChRs from the surface of the cells through a process that has the characteristics of antigenic modulation. The number of AChRs on the surface of the chromaffin cells can also be modulated by agonists and hormones, including glucocotricoids. Catecholamines, three peptides that may be secreted by chromaffin cells, and K{sup +}-induced secretion reduce agonist-induced catecholamine release by decreasing the number of AChRs, providing a mechanism for autoregulation.

  2. Nicotinic receptor Alpha7 expression during mouse adrenal gland development.

    PubMed

    Gahring, Lorise C; Myers, Elizabeth; Palumbos, Sierra; Rogers, Scott W

    2014-01-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha 7 (α7) is a ligand-activated ion channel that contributes to a diversity of cellular processes involved in development, neurotransmission and inflammation. In this report the expression of α7 was examined in the mouse developing and adult adrenal gland that expresses a green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter as a bi-cistronic extension of the endogenous α7 transcript (α7(G)). At embryonic day 12.5 (E12.5) α7(G) expression was associated with the suprarenal ganglion and precursor cells of the adrenal gland. The α7(G) cells are catecholaminergic chromaffin cells as reflected by their progressive increase in the co-expression of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and dopamine-beta-hydroxylase (DBH) that is complete by E18.5. In the adult, α7(G) expression is limited to a subset of chromaffin cells in the adrenal medulla that cluster near the border with the adrenal cortex. These chromaffin cells co-express α7(G), TH and DBH, but they lack phenylethanolamine N-methyltransferase (PNMT) consistent with only norepinephrine (NE) synthesis. These cell groups appear to be preferentially innervated by pre-ganglionic afferents identified by the neurotrophin receptor p75. No afferents identified by beta-III tubulin, neurofilament proteins or p75 co-expressed α7(G). Occasional α7(G) cells in the pre-E14.5 embryos express neuronal markers consistent with intrinsic ganglion cells and in the adult some α7(G) cells co-express glutamic acid decarboxylase. The transient expression of α7 during adrenal gland development and its prominent co-expression by a subset of NE chromaffin cells in the adult suggests that the α7 receptor contributes to multiple aspects of adrenal gland development and function that persist into adulthood. PMID:25093893

  3. N-Benzylpiperidine Derivatives as α7 Nicotinic Receptor Antagonists.

    PubMed

    Criado, Manuel; Mulet, José; Sala, Francisco; Sala, Salvador; Colmena, Inés; Gandía, Luis; Bautista-Aguilera, Oscar M; Samadi, Abdelouahid; Chioua, Mourad; Marco-Contelles, José

    2016-08-17

    A series of multitarget directed propargylamines, as well as other differently susbstituted piperidines have been screened as potential modulators of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Most of them showed antagonist actions on α7 nAChRs. Especially, compounds 13, 26, and 38 displayed submicromolar IC50 values on homomeric α7 nAChRs, whereas they were less effective on heteromeric α3β4 and α4β2 nAChRs (up to 20-fold higher IC50 values in the case of 13). Antagonism was concentration dependent and noncompetitive, suggesting that these compounds behave as negative allosteric modulators of nAChRs. Upon the study of a series of less complex derivatives, the N-benzylpiperidine motif, common to these compounds, was found to be the main pharmacophoric group. Thus, 2-(1-benzylpiperidin-4-yl)-ethylamine (48) showed an inhibitory potency comparable to the one of the previous compounds and also a clear preference for α7 nAChRs. In a neuroblastoma cell line, representative compounds 13 and 48 also inhibited, in a concentration-dependent manner, cytosolic Ca(2+) signals mediated by nAChRs. Finally, compounds 38 and 13 inhibited 5-HT3A serotonin receptors whereas they had no effect on α1 glycine receptors. Given the multifactorial nature of many pathologies in which nAChRs are involved, these piperidine antagonists could have a therapeutic potential in cases where cholinergic activity has to be negatively modulated. PMID:27254782

  4. Nicotinic Receptors: Role in Addiction and Other Disorders of the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Geeta; Vijayaraghavan, Sukumar

    2008-01-01

    Nicotine, the addictive component of cigarette smoke has profound effects on the brain. Activation of its receptors by nicotine has complex consequences for network activity throughout the brain, potentially contributing to the addictive property of the drug. Nicotinic receptors have been implicated in psychiatric illnesses like schizophrenia and are also neuroprotective, potentially beneficial for neurodegenerative diseases. These effects of nicotine serve to emphasize the multifarious roles the drug, acting through multiple nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes. The findings also remind us of the complexity of signaling mechanisms and stress the risks of unintended consequences of drugs designed to combat nicotine addiction. PMID:20148179

  5. Caenorhabditis elegans nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are required for nociception

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Emiliano; Chatzigeorgiou, Marios; Husson, Steven J.; Steuer-Costa, Wagner; Gottschalk, Alexander; Schafer, William R.; Treinin, Millet

    2014-01-01

    Polymodal nociceptors sense and integrate information on injurious mechanical, thermal, and chemical stimuli. Chemical signals either activate nociceptors or modulate their responses to other stimuli. One chemical known to activate or modulate responses of nociceptors is acetylcholine (ACh). Across evolution nociceptors express subunits of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) family, a family of ACh-gated ion channels. The roles of ACh and nAChRs in nociceptor function are, however, poorly understood. Caenorhabditis elegans polymodal nociceptors, PVD, express nAChR subunits on their sensory arbor. Here we show that mutations reducing ACh synthesis and mutations in nAChR subunits lead to defects in PVD function and morphology. A likely cause for these defects is a reduction in cytosolic calcium measured in ACh and nAChR mutants. Indeed, overexpression of a calcium pump in PVD mimics defects in PVD function and morphology found in nAChR mutants. Our results demonstrate, for the first time, a central role for nAChRs and ACh in nociceptor function and suggest that calcium permeating via nAChRs facilitates activity of several signaling pathways within this neuron. PMID:24518198

  6. Mechanisms of Nicotine Addiction

    SciTech Connect

    McGehee, Daniel

    2002-06-26

    Nicotine reinforces the use of tobacco products primarily through its interaction with specific receptor proteins within the brain's reward centers. A critical step in the process of addiction for many drugs, including nicotine, is the release of the neurotransmitter dopamine. A single nicotine exposure will enhance dopamine levels for hours, however, nicotinic receptors undergo both activation and then desensitization in minutes, which presents an important problem. How does the time course of receptor activity lead to the prolonged release of dopamine? We have found that persistent modulation of both inhibitory and excitatory synaptic connections by nicotine underlies the sustained increase in dopamine release. Because these inputs express different types of nicotinic receptors there is a coordinated shift in the balance of synaptic inputs toward excitation of the dopamine neurons. Excitatory inputs are turned on while inhibitory inputs are depressed, thereby boosting the brain's reward system.

  7. Mechanisms of Nicotine Addiction

    SciTech Connect

    McGehee, Daniel

    2009-06-26

    Nicotine reinforces the use of tobacco products primarily through its interaction with specific receptor proteins within the brain’s reward centers. A critical step in the process of addiction for many drugs, including nicotine, is the release of the neurotransmitter dopamine. A single nicotine exposure will enhance dopamine levels for hours, however, nicotinic receptors undergo both activation and then desensitization in minutes, which presents an important problem. How does the time course of receptor activity lead to the prolonged release of dopamine? We have found that persistent modulation of both inhibitory and excitatory synaptic connections by nicotine underlies the sustained increase in dopamine release. Because these inputs express different types of nicotinic receptors there is a coordinated shift in the balance of synaptic inputs toward excitation of the dopamine neurons. Excitatory inputs are turned on while inhibitory inputs are depressed, thereby boosting the brain’s reward system.

  8. Nicotine improves the functional activity of late endothelial progenitor cells via nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Yu, Min; Liu, Qian; Sun, Jing; Yi, Kaihong; Wu, Libiao; Tan, Xuerui

    2011-08-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate whether nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are involved in the modulation of functional activity of late endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) induced by nicotine. Total mononuclear cells (MNCs) were isolated from human umbilical cord blood by Ficoll density gradient centrifugation, and then the cells were plated on fibronectin-coated culture plates. Late EPCs were positive for 1,1-dioctadecyl-3,3,3,3-tetramethylindocarbocyanine-labeled acetylated low-density lipoprotein (DiI-acLDL) uptake and fluorescein-isothiocyanate-conjugated Ulex europaeus agglutinin lectin (UEA-1) binding. Expression of von Willbrand factor (vWF), kinase insert domain receptor (KDR), and α7 nAChR was detected by indirect immunofluorescence staining. Late EPCs of 3-5 passages were treated for 32 h with either vehicle or nicotine with or without pre-incubation of nAChR antagonism, mecamylamine, or α-bungarotoxin. The viability, migration, and in vitro vasculogenesis activity of late EPCs were assayed with 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay, modified Boyden chamber assay, and in vitro angiogenesis assay, respectively. Late EPCs adhesion assay was performed by replating cells on fibronectin-coated plates, and then adherent cells were counted. Incubation with 10 nmol/L nicotine enhanced viable, migratory, adhesive, and in vitro vasculogenesis capacity of late EPCs. The effect of nicotine on late EPCs can be attenuated by mecamylamine or α-bungarotoxin. In conclusion, nicotine improves the functional activity of late EPCs via nAChRs. PMID:21774635

  9. Heterogeneity of Drosophila nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: SAD, a novel developmentally regulated alpha-subunit.

    PubMed Central

    Sawruk, E; Schloss, P; Betz, H; Schmitt, B

    1990-01-01

    Two genes, ard and als, are known to encode subunits of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) in Drosophila. Here we describe the isolation of cDNA clones encoding a novel member (SAD, or alpha 2) of this receptor protein family. The deduced amino acid sequence displays high homology to the ALS protein and shares structural features with ligand binding nAChR alpha-subunits. Sad transcripts accumulate during major periods of neuronal differentiation and, in embryos, are localized in the central nervous system. Expression of SAD cRNA in Xenopus oocytes generates cation channels that are gated by nicotine. These data indicate heterogeneity of nAChRs in Drosophila. Images Fig. 3. Fig. 4. PMID:1697262

  10. Single-channel properties of α3β4, α3β4α5 and α3β4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in mice lacking specific nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits

    PubMed Central

    Ciuraszkiewicz, Anna; Schreibmayer, Wolfgang; Platzer, Dieter; Orr-Urtreger, Avi; Scholze, Petra; Huck, Sigismund

    2013-01-01

    Previous attempts to measure the functional properties of recombinant nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) composed of known receptor subunits have yielded conflicting results. The use of knockout mice that lack α5, β2, α5β2 or α5β2α7 nAChR subunits enabled us to measure the single-channel properties of distinct α3β4, α3β4α5 and α3β4β2 receptors in superior cervical ganglion (SCG) neurons. Using this approach, we found that α3β4 receptors had a principal conductance level of 32.6 ± 0.8 pS (mean ± SEM) and both higher and lower secondary conductance levels. α3β4α5 receptors had the same conductance as α3β4 receptors, but differed from α3β4 receptors by having an increased channel open time and increased burst duration. By contrast, α3β4β2 receptors differed from α3β4 and α3β4α5 receptors by having a significantly smaller conductance level (13.6 ± 0.5 pS). After dissecting the single-channel properties of these receptors using our knockout models, we then identified these properties – and hence the receptors themselves – in wild-type SCG neurons. This study is the first to identify the single-channel properties of distinct neuronal nicotinic receptors in their native environment. PMID:23613527

  11. Adolescent nicotine-induced dendrite remodeling in the nucleus accumbens is rapid, persistent, and D1-dopamine receptor dependent.

    PubMed

    Ehlinger, D G; Bergstrom, H C; Burke, J C; Fernandez, G M; McDonald, C G; Smith, R F

    2016-01-01

    Chronic nicotine exposure during adolescence induces dendritic remodeling of medium spiny neurons (MSNs) in the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) shell. While nicotine-induced dendritic remodeling has frequently been described as persistent, the trajectory of dendrite remodeling is unknown. Specifically, no study to date has characterized the structural plasticity of dendrites in the NAcc immediately following chronic nicotine, leaving open the possibility that dendrite remodeling emerges gradually over time. Further, the neuropharmacological mechanisms through which nicotine induces dendrite remodeling are not well understood. To address these questions, rats were co-administered chronic nicotine (0.5 mg/kg) and the D1-dopamine receptor (D1DR) antagonist SCH-23390 (0.05 mg/kg) subcutaneously every other day during adolescence. Brains were then processed for Golgi-Cox staining either 1 day or 21 days following drug exposure and dendrites from MSNs in the NAcc shell digitally reconstructed in 3D. Spine density was also measured at both time points. Our morphometric results show (1) the formation of new dendritic branches and spines 1 day following nicotine exposure, (2) new dendritic branches, but not spine density, remains relatively stable for at least 21 days, (3) the co-administration of SCH-23390 completely blocked nicotine-induced dendritic remodeling of MSNs at both early and late time points, suggesting the formation of new dendritic branches in response to nicotine is D1DR-dependent, and (4) SCH-23390 failed to block nicotine-induced increases in spine density. Overall this study provides new insight into how nicotine influences the normal trajectory of adolescent brain development and demonstrates a persistent form of nicotine-induced neuroplasticity in the NAcc shell that develops rapidly and is D1DR dependent. PMID:25257604

  12. Adenosine (A)(2A)receptor modulation of nicotine-induced locomotor sensitization. A pharmacological and transgenic approach.

    PubMed

    Jastrzębska, Joanna; Nowak, Ewa; Smaga, Irena; Bystrowska, Beata; Frankowska, Małgorzata; Bader, Michael; Filip, Małgorzata; Fuxe, Kjell

    2014-06-01

    Preclinical evidence indicates an important role of adenosine (A)(2A) receptors in drug addiction while their therapeutic relevance is still a matter of debate. We examined the influence of the A(2A) receptor agonist CGS 21680 and the antagonist KW 6002 on nicotine sensitization and conditioned locomotor activity in adult (8-week old) male Sprague-Dawley rats (WT). Moreover, behavioral responses to nicotine were studied in rats overexpressing A(2A) receptors under the control of the neuronal specific enolase (NSE) promotor. Changes in the levels of dopamine, glutamate and γ-aminobutyric acid in wild type (WT) and NSEA(2A) rats were determined with using LC-MS. KW 6002 significantly enhanced expression of nicotine sensitization and conditioned locomotion, while CGS 21680 reduced all these effects in WT rats. A reduction of the expression of nicotine-evoked conditioned locomotor activity was also observed in the NSEA(2A) animals. The transgenic rats displayed a reduced basal tissue level of glutamate in the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus while dopamine basal levels in the nucleus accumbens were raised. Chronic nicotine treatment caused a significant reduction in the glutamate tissue level in the dorsal and ventral striatum, prefrontal cortex and cerebellum in wild type rats. In NSEA(2A) animals the same drug treatment instead produced a rise of glutamate levels in the hippocampus and dorsal striatum. Taken together, A(2A) receptor signaling in the rat brain can counteract locomotor sensitization and conditioned locomotion to nicotine which are related to nicotine reward-learning. It is suggested that treatment with A(2A) receptor agonists can help counteract the abuse actions of nicotine. PMID:24632528

  13. Cannabinoid Receptor 1 Gene Association With Nicotine Dependence

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xiangning; Williamson, Vernell S.; An, Seon-Sook; Hettema, John M.; Aggen, Steven H.; Neale, Michael C.; Kendler, Kenneth S.

    2009-01-01

    Context The endogenous cannabinoid system has been implicated in drug addiction in animal models. The cannabinoid receptor 1 (CNR1) gene is 1 of the 2 receptors expressed in the brain. It has been reported to be associated with alcoholism and multiple drug abuse and dependence. Objective To test the hypothesis that the CNR1 gene is associated with nicotine dependence. Design Genotype-phenotype association study. Ten single-nucleotide polymorphisms were genotyped in the CNR1 gene in 2 independent samples. For the first sample (n=688), a 3-group case-control design was used to test allele association with smoking initiation and nicotine dependence. For the second sample (n = 961), association was assessed with scores from the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence (FTND). Settings Population samples selected from the Mid-Atlantic Twin Registry. Participants White patients aged 18 to 65 years who met the criteria of inclusion. Main Outcome Measures Fagerström Tolerance Questionnaire and FTND scores. Results Significant single-marker and haplotype associations were found in both samples, and the associations were female specific. Haplotype 1-1-2 of markers rs2023239-rs12720071-rs806368 was associated with nicotine dependence and FTND score in the 2 samples (P<.001 and P = .009, respectively). Conclusion Variants and haplotypes in the CNR1 gene may alter the risk for nicotine dependence, and the associations are likely sex specific. PMID:18606954

  14. Inhibition of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors, a Novel Facet in the Pleiotropic Activities of Snake Venom Phospholipases A2

    PubMed Central

    Vulfius, Catherine A.; Kasheverov, Igor E.; Starkov, Vladislav G.; Osipov, Alexey V.; Andreeva, Tatyana V.; Filkin, Sergey Yu.; Gorbacheva, Elena V.; Astashev, Maxim E.; Tsetlin, Victor I.; Utkin, Yuri N.

    2014-01-01

    Phospholipases A2 represent the most abundant family of snake venom proteins. They manifest an array of biological activities, which is constantly expanding. We have recently shown that a protein bitanarin, isolated from the venom of the puff adder Bitis arietans and possessing high phospholipolytic activity, interacts with different types of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and with the acetylcholine-binding protein. To check if this property is characteristic to all venom phospholipases A2, we have studied the capability of these enzymes from other snakes to block the responses of Lymnaea stagnalis neurons to acetylcholine or cytisine and to inhibit α-bungarotoxin binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and acetylcholine-binding proteins. Here we present the evidence that phospholipases A2 from venoms of vipers Vipera ursinii and V. nikolskii, cobra Naja kaouthia, and krait Bungarus fasciatus from different snake families suppress the acetylcholine- or cytisine-elicited currents in L. stagnalis neurons and compete with α-bungarotoxin for binding to muscle- and neuronal α7-types of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, as well as to acetylcholine-binding proteins. As the phospholipase A2 content in venoms is quite high, under some conditions the activity found may contribute to the deleterious venom effects. The results obtained suggest that the ability to interact with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors may be a general property of snake venom phospholipases A2, which add a new target to the numerous activities of these enzymes. PMID:25522251

  15. Topographical studies of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. [Torpedo californica

    SciTech Connect

    Middlemas, D.S.

    1987-01-01

    All four subunits of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in membrane vesicles isolated from Torpedo californica have been labeled with the photoactivated hydrophobic probe, (/sup 3/H)adamantanediazirine, which selectively labels regions of integral membrane proteins in contact with the hydrocarbon core of the lipid bilayer. All four subunits of the acetylcholine receptor in membrane vesicles isolated from Torpedo californica have been labeled with (/sup 3/H)cholesteryl diazoacetate. As this probe incorporates into lipid bilayers analogously to cholesterol, this result indicates that acetylcholine receptor interacts with cholesterol. Since the photogenerated carbene is situated near the lipid-water interface, this probe has potential as a topographic tool for mapping membrane protein structure. The labeling studies with both (/sup 3/H)adamantanediazirine and (/sup 3/H)cholesteryl diazoacetate support the concept that the acetylcholine receptor is a pseudosymmetric complex of homologous subunits, all of which interact with and span the membrane. The synthesis of the fluorine-containing agonists for the Torpedo californica nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, fluoroacetylcholine bromide and p-fluorophenyltrimethylammonium iodide, are described. It is demonstrated that both are agonists using a cation flux assay with acetylcholine receptor enriched membrane vesicles. The affinity cleavage reagent, p-thiocyanophenyltrimethylammonium iodide, specifically cleaves a peptide bond of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in membrane vesicles isolated from Torpedo californica. It is demonstrated that this reagent is an agonist using a cation flux assay. The cleavage is blocked by stoichiometric quantities of ..cap alpha..-bungarotoxin.

  16. Acetylcholine release in mouse hippocampal CA1 preferentially activates inhibitory-selective interneurons via α4β2* nicotinic receptor activation

    PubMed Central

    Bell, L. Andrew; Bell, Karen A.; McQuiston, A. Rory

    2015-01-01

    Acetylcholine (ACh) release onto nicotinic receptors directly activates subsets of inhibitory interneurons in hippocampal CA1. However, the specific interneurons activated and their effect on the hippocampal network is not completely understood. Therefore, we investigated subsets of hippocampal CA1 interneurons that respond to ACh release through the activation of nicotinic receptors and the potential downstream effects this may have on hippocampal CA1 network function. ACh was optogenetically released in mouse hippocampal slices by expressing the excitatory optogenetic protein oChIEF-tdTomato in medial septum/diagonal band of Broca cholinergic neurons using Cre recombinase-dependent adeno-associated viral mediated transfection. The actions of optogenetically released ACh were assessed on both pyramidal neurons and different interneuron subtypes via whole cell patch clamp methods. Vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP)-expressing interneurons that selectively innervate other interneurons (VIP/IS) were excited by ACh through the activation of nicotinic receptors containing α4 and β2 subunits (α4β2*). ACh release onto VIP/IS was presynaptically inhibited by M2 muscarinic autoreceptors. ACh release produced spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic current (sIPSC) barrages blocked by dihydro-β-erythroidine in interneurons but not pyramidal neurons. Optogenetic suppression of VIP interneurons did not inhibit these sIPSC barrages suggesting other interneuron-selective interneurons were also excited by α4β2* nicotinic receptor activation. In contrast, interneurons that innervate pyramidal neuron perisomatic regions were not activated by ACh release onto nicotinic receptors. Therefore, we propose ACh release in CA1 facilitates disinhibition through activation of α4β2* nicotinic receptors on interneuron-selective interneurons whereas interneurons that innervate pyramidal neurons are less affected by nicotinic receptor activation. PMID:25918499

  17. Nicotine Withdrawal

    PubMed Central

    McLaughlin, Ian; Dani, John A.; De Biasi, Mariella

    2015-01-01

    An aversive abstinence syndrome manifests 4–24 h following cessation of chronic use of nicotine-containing products. Symptoms peak on approximately the 3rd day and taper off over the course of the following 3–4 weeks. While the severity of withdrawal symptoms is largely determined by how nicotine is consumed, certain short nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have been shown to predispose individuals to consume larger amounts of nicotine more frequently—as well as to more severe symptoms of withdrawal when trying to quit. Additionally, rodent behavioral models and transgenic mouse models have revealed that specific nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits, cellular components, and neuronal circuits are critical to the expression of withdrawal symptoms. Consequently, by continuing to map neuronal circuits and nAChR subpopulations that underlie the nicotine withdrawal syndrome—and by continuing to enumerate genes that predispose carriers to nicotine addiction and exacerbated withdrawal symptoms—it will be possible to pursue personalized therapeutics that more effectively treat nicotine addiction. PMID:25638335

  18. Quinuclidine compounds differently act as agonists of Kenyon cell nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and induced distinct effect on insect ganglionic depolarizations.

    PubMed

    Mathé-Allainmat, Monique; Swale, Daniel; Leray, Xavier; Benzidane, Yassine; Lebreton, Jacques; Bloomquist, Jeffrey R; Thany, Steeve H

    2013-12-01

    We have recently demonstrated that a new quinuclidine benzamide compound named LMA10203 acted as an agonist of insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Its specific pharmacological profile on cockroach dorsal unpaired median neurons (DUM) helped to identify alpha-bungarotoxin-insensitive nAChR2 receptors. In the present study, we tested its effect on cockroach Kenyon cells. We found that it induced an inward current demonstrating that it bounds to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed on Kenyon cells. Interestingly, LMA10203-induced currents were completely blocked by the nicotinic antagonist α-bungarotoxin. We suggested that LMA10203 effect occurred through the activation of α-bungarotoxin-sensitive receptors and did not involve α-bungarotoxin-insensitive nAChR2, previously identified in DUM neurons. In addition, we have synthesized two new compounds, LMA10210 and LMA10211, and compared their effects on Kenyon cells. These compounds were members of the 3-quinuclidinyl benzamide or benzoate families. Interestingly, 1 mM LMA10210 was not able to induce an inward current on Kenyon cells compared to LMA10211. Similarly, we did not find any significant effect of LMA10210 on cockroach ganglionic depolarization, whereas these three compounds were able to induce an effect on the central nervous system of the third instar M. domestica larvae. Our data suggested that these three compounds could bind to distinct cockroach nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. PMID:23884575

  19. Theoretical investigation of interaction between the set of ligands and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glukhova, O. E.; Prytkova, T. R.; Shmygin, D. S.

    2016-03-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are neuron receptor proteins that provide a transmission of nerve impulse through the synapses. They are composed of a pentametric assembly of five homologous subunits (5 α7 subunits for α7nAChR, for example), oriented around the central pore. These receptors might be found in the chemical synapses of central and peripheral nervous system, and also in the neuromuscular synapses. Transmembrane domain of the one of such receptors constitutes ion channel. The conductive properties of ion channel strongly depend on the receptor conformation changes in the response of binding with some molecule, f.e. acetylcholine. Investigation of interaction between ligands and acetylcholine receptor is important for drug design. In this work we investigate theoretically the interaction between the set of different ligands (such as vanillin, thymoquinone, etc.) and the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (primarily with subunit of the α7nAChR) by different methods and packages (AutodockVina, GROMACS, KVAZAR, HARLEM, VMD). We calculate interaction energy between different ligands in the subunit using molecular dynamics. On the base of obtained calculation results and using molecular docking we found an optimal location of different ligands in the subunit.

  20. Targeting the Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors (nAChRs) in Astrocytes as a Potential Therapeutic Target in Parkinson's Disease.

    PubMed

    Jurado-Coronel, Juan Camilo; Avila-Rodriguez, Marco; Capani, Francisco; Gonzalez, Janneth; Moran, Valentina Echeverria; Barreto, George E

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a relatively common disorder of the Central Nervous System (CNS), whose etiology is characterized by a selective and progressive degeneration of dopaminergic neurons, and the presence of Lewy bodies in the pars compacta of the substantia nigra, and gaping dopamine depletion in the striatum. Patients with this disease suffer from tremors, slowness of movements, gait instability, and rigidity. These patients may also present functional disability, reduced quality of life, and rapid cognitive decline. It has been shown that nicotine exerts beneficial effects in patients with PD and in in-vitro and in-vivo models of this disease. Astrocytes are an important component in the immune response associated with PD, and that nicotine might be able to inhibit the inflammation-related apoptosis of these cells, being this a potential strategy for PD treatment. This action of nicotine could be due mainly to activation of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7-nAChRs) expressed in glial cells. However, nicotine administration can protect dopaminergic neurons against degeneration by inhibiting astrocytes activation in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and therefore reduce inflammation. Owing to the toxicity and capacity of nicotine to induce addiction, analogues of this substance have been designed and tested in various experimental paradigms, and targeting α7-nAChRs expressed in glial cells may be a novel therapeutic strategy for PD treatment. PMID:26972289

  1. A Multi-Route Model of Nicotine-Cotinine Pharmacokinetics, Pharmacodynamics and Brain Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Binding in Humans

    SciTech Connect

    Teeguarden, Justin G.; Housand, Conrad; Smith, Jordan N.; Hinderliter, Paul M.; Gunawan, Rudy; Timchalk, Charles

    2013-02-01

    The pharmacokinetics of nicotine, the pharmacologically active alkaloid in tobacco responsible for addiction, are well characterized in humans. We developed a physiologically based pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic model of nicotine pharmacokinetics, brain dosimetry and brain nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChRs) occupancy. A Bayesian framework was applied to optimize model parameters against multiple human data sets. The resulting model was consistent with both calibration and test data sets, but in general underestimated variability. A pharmacodynamic model relating nicotine levels to increases in heart rate as a proxy for the pharmacological effects of nicotine accurately described the nicotine related changes in heart rate and the development and decay of tolerance to nicotine. The PBPK model was utilized to quantitatively capture the combined impact of variation in physiological and metabolic parameters, nicotine availability and smoking compensation on the change in number of cigarettes smoked and toxicant exposure in a population of 10,000 people presented with a reduced toxicant (50%), reduced nicotine (50%) cigarette Across the population, toxicant exposure is reduced in some but not all smokers. Reductions are not in proportion to reductions in toxicant yields, largely due to partial compensation in response to reduced nicotine yields. This framework can be used as a key element of a dosimetry-driven risk assessment strategy for cigarette smoke constituents.

  2. α4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor modulated by galantamine on nigrostriatal terminals regulates dopamine receptor-mediated rotational behavior.

    PubMed

    Inden, Masatoshi; Takata, Kazuyuki; Yanagisawa, Daijiro; Ashihara, Eishi; Tooyama, Ikuo; Shimohama, Shun; Kitamura, Yoshihisa

    2016-03-01

    Galantamine, an acetylcholine esterase (AChE) inhibitor used to treat dementia symptoms, also acts as an allosteric potentiating ligand (APL) at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). This study was designed to evaluate the allosteric effect of galantamine on nAChR regulation of nigrostrial dopaminergic neuronal function in the hemiparkinsonian rat model established by unilateral nigral 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) injection. Methamphetamine, a dopamine releaser, induced ipsilateral rotation, whereas dopamine agonists apomorphine (a non-selective dopamine receptor agonist), SKF38393 (a selective dopamine D1 receptor agonist), and quinpirole (a selective dopamine D2 receptor agonist) induced contralateral rotation. When 6-OHDA-injected rats were co-treated with nomifensine, a dopamine transporter inhibitor, a more pronounced and a remarkable effect of nicotine and galantamine was observed. Under these conditions, the combination of nomifensine with nicotine or galantamine induced the ipsilateral rotation similar to the methamphetamine-induced rotational behavior, indicating that nicotine and galantamine also induce dopamine release from striatal terminals. Both nicotine- and galantamine-induced rotations were significantly blocked by flupenthixol (an antagonist of both D1 and D2 dopamine receptors) and mecamylamine (an antagonist of nAChRs), suggesting that galantamine modulation of nAChRs on striatal dopaminergic terminals regulates dopamine receptor-mediated movement. Immunohistochemical staining showed that α4 nAChRs were highly expressed on striatal dopaminergic terminals, while no α7 nAChRs were detected. Pretreatment with the α4 nAChR antagonist dihydroxy-β-erythroidine significantly inhibited nicotine- and galantamine-induced rotational behaviors, whereas pretreatment with the α7 nAChR antagonist methyllycaconitine was ineffective. Moreover, the α4 nAChR agonist ABT-418 induced ipsilateral rotation, while the α7 nAChR agonist PNU282987 had no

  3. Nicotinic modulation of glutamate receptor function at nerve terminal level: a fine-tuning of synaptic signals.

    PubMed

    Marchi, Mario; Grilli, Massimo; Pittaluga, Anna M

    2015-01-01

    This review focuses on a specific interaction occurring between the nicotinic cholinergic receptors (nAChRs) and the glutamatergic receptors (GluRs) at the nerve endings level. We have employed synaptosomes in superfusion and supplemented and integrated our findings with data obtained using techniques from molecular biology and immuno-cytochemistry, and the assessment of receptor trafficking. In particular, we characterize the following: (1) the direct and unequivocal localization of native α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) and N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) glutamatergic receptors on specific nerve terminals, (2) their pharmacological characterization and functional co-localization with nAChRs on the same nerve endings, and (3) the existence of synergistic or antagonistic interactions among them. Indeed, in the rat nucleus accumbens (NAc), the function of some AMPA and NMDA receptors present on the dopaminergic and glutamatergic nerve terminals can be regulated negatively or positively in response to a brief activation of nAChRs. This effect occurs rapidly and involves the trafficking of AMPA and NMDA receptors. The event takes place also at very low concentrations of nicotine and involves the activation of several nAChRs subtypes. This dynamic control by cholinergic nicotinic system of glutamatergic NMDA and AMPA receptors might therefore represent an important neuronal presynaptic adaptation associated with nicotine administration. The understanding of the role of these nicotine-induced functional changes might open new and interesting perspectives both in terms of explaining the mechanisms that underlie some of the effects of nicotine addiction and in the development of new drugs for smoking cessation. PMID:25972809

  4. Does chronic nicotine alter neurotransmitter receptors involved in Parkinson's disease

    SciTech Connect

    Reilly, M.A.; Lapin, E.P.; Lajtha, A.; Maker, H.S.

    1986-03-05

    Cigarette smokers are fewer in number among Parkinson's Disease (PD) patients than among groups of persons who do not have PD. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain this observation. One which must be tested is the possibility that some pharmacologic agent present in cigarette smoke may interact with some central nervous system component involved in PD. To this end, they have investigated the effect of chronic nicotine administration on receptors for some of the neurotransmitters that are affected in PD. Rats were injected for six weeks with saline or nicotine 0.8 mg/kg S.C., then killed and brains removed and dissected. The binding of (/sup 3/H)-ketanserin to serotonin receptors in frontal cortex and of (/sup 3/H)-domperidone to dopamine receptors in caudate was not affected. However, the binding of (/sup 3/H)-domperidone in nucleus accumbens was altered: the K/sub d/ increased from 0.16 +/- 0.02 nM to 0.61 +/- 0.07 nM, and the B/sub max/ increased from 507 +/- 47 fmol/mg protein to 910 +/- 43 fmol/mg (p < 0.001 for both comparisons). These values are based on three ligand concentrations. Additional studies are in progress to substantiate the data. It is concluded that chronic nicotine administration may alter dopamine receptors in nucleus accumbens.

  5. An epigenetic mechanism mediates developmental nicotine effects on neuronal structure and behavior.

    PubMed

    Jung, Yonwoo; Hsieh, Lawrence S; Lee, Angela M; Zhou, Zhifeng; Coman, Daniel; Heath, Christopher J; Hyder, Fahmeed; Mineur, Yann S; Yuan, Qiaoping; Goldman, David; Bordey, Angelique; Picciotto, Marina R

    2016-07-01

    Developmental nicotine exposure causes persistent changes in cortical neuron morphology and in behavior. We used microarray screening to identify master transcriptional or epigenetic regulators mediating these effects of nicotine and discovered increases in Ash2l mRNA, encoding a component of a histone methyltransferase complex. We therefore examined genome-wide changes in trimethylation of histone H3 on Lys4 (H3K4me3), a mark induced by the Ash2l complex associated with increased gene transcription. A large proportion of regulated promoter sites were involved in synapse maintenance. We found that Mef2c interacts with Ash2l and mediates changes in H3K4me3. Knockdown of Ash2l or Mef2c abolished nicotine-mediated alterations of dendritic complexity in vitro and in vivo, and attenuated nicotine-dependent changes in passive avoidance behavior. In contrast, overexpression mimicked nicotine-mediated alterations of neuronal structure and passive avoidance behavior. These studies identify Ash2l as a target induced by nicotinic stimulation that couples developmental nicotine exposure to changes in brain epigenetic marks, neuronal structure and behavior. PMID:27239938

  6. Menthol Alone Upregulates Midbrain nAChRs, Alters nAChR Subtype Stoichiometry, Alters Dopamine Neuron Firing Frequency, and Prevents Nicotine Reward.

    PubMed

    Henderson, Brandon J; Wall, Teagan R; Henley, Beverley M; Kim, Charlene H; Nichols, Weston A; Moaddel, Ruin; Xiao, Cheng; Lester, Henry A

    2016-03-01

    Upregulation of β2 subunit-containing (β2*) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) is implicated in several aspects of nicotine addiction, and menthol cigarette smokers tend to upregulate β2* nAChRs more than nonmenthol cigarette smokers. We investigated the effect of long-term menthol alone on midbrain neurons containing nAChRs. In midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons from mice containing fluorescent nAChR subunits, menthol alone increased the number of α4 and α6 nAChR subunits, but this upregulation did not occur in midbrain GABAergic neurons. Thus, chronic menthol produces a cell-type-selective upregulation of α4* nAChRs, complementing that of chronic nicotine alone, which upregulates α4 subunit-containing (α4*) nAChRs in GABAergic but not DA neurons. In mouse brain slices and cultured midbrain neurons, menthol reduced DA neuron firing frequency and altered DA neuron excitability following nAChR activation. Furthermore, menthol exposure before nicotine abolished nicotine reward-related behavior in mice. In neuroblastoma cells transfected with fluorescent nAChR subunits, exposure to 500 nm menthol alone also increased nAChR number and favored the formation of (α4)3(β2)2 nAChRs; this contrasts with the action of nicotine itself, which favors (α4)2(β2)3 nAChRs. Menthol alone also increases the number of α6β2 receptors that exclude the β3 subunit. Thus, menthol stabilizes lower-sensitivity α4* and α6 subunit-containing nAChRs, possibly by acting as a chemical chaperone. The abolition of nicotine reward-related behavior may be mediated through menthol's ability to stabilize lower-sensitivity nAChRs and alter DA neuron excitability. We conclude that menthol is more than a tobacco flavorant: administered alone chronically, it alters midbrain DA neurons of the nicotine reward-related pathway. PMID:26961950

  7. AzoCholine Enables Optical Control of Alpha 7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in Neural Networks.

    PubMed

    Damijonaitis, Arunas; Broichhagen, Johannes; Urushima, Tatsuya; Hüll, Katharina; Nagpal, Jatin; Laprell, Laura; Schönberger, Matthias; Woodmansee, David H; Rafiq, Amir; Sumser, Martin P; Kummer, Wolfgang; Gottschalk, Alexander; Trauner, Dirk

    2015-05-20

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are essential for cellular communication in higher organisms. Even though a vast pharmacological toolset to study cholinergic systems has been developed, control of endogenous neuronal nAChRs with high spatiotemporal precision has been lacking. To address this issue, we have generated photoswitchable nAChR agonists and re-evaluated the known photochromic ligand, BisQ. Using electrophysiology, we found that one of our new compounds, AzoCholine, is an excellent photoswitchable agonist for neuronal α7 nAChRs, whereas BisQ was confirmed to be an agonist for the muscle-type nAChR. AzoCholine could be used to modulate cholinergic activity in a brain slice and in dorsal root ganglion neurons. In addition, we demonstrate light-dependent perturbation of behavior in the nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans. PMID:25741856

  8. L-theanine inhibits nicotine-induced dependence via regulation of the nicotine acetylcholine receptor-dopamine reward pathway.

    PubMed

    Di, Xiaojing; Yan, Jingqi; Zhao, Yan; Chang, Yanzhong; Zhao, Baolu

    2012-12-01

    In this study, the inhibitory effect of L-theanine, an amino acid derivative of tea, on the rewarding effects of nicotine and its underlying mechanisms of action were studied. We found that L-theanine inhibited the rewarding effects of nicotine in a conditioned place preference (CPP) model of the mouse and reduced the excitatory status induced by nicotine in SH-SY5Y cells to the same extent as the nicotine receptor inhibitor dihydro-beta-erythroidine (DHβE). Further studies using high performance liquid chromatography, western blotting and immunofluorescence staining analyses showed that L-theanine significantly inhibited nicotine-induced tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) expression and dopamine production in the midbrain of mice. L-theanine treatment also reduced the upregulation of the α(4), β(2) and α(7) nicotine acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits induced by nicotine in mouse brain regions that related to the dopamine reward pathway, thus decreasing the number of cells that could react to nicotine. In addition, L-theanine treatment inhibited nicotine-induced c-Fos expression in the reward circuit related areas of the mouse brain. Knockdown of c-Fos by siRNA inhibited the excitatory status of cells but not the upregulation of TH induced by nicotine in SH-SY5Y cells. Overall, the present study showed that L-theanine reduced the nicotine-induced reward effects via inhibition of the nAChR-dopamine reward pathway. These results may offer new therapeutic strategies for treatment of tobacco addiction. PMID:23233221

  9. Vanilloid receptors mediate adrenergic nerve- and CGRP-containing nerve-dependent vasodilation induced by nicotine in rat mesenteric resistance arteries

    PubMed Central

    Eguchi, Shinji; Tezuka, Satoko; Hobara, Narumi; Akiyama, Shinji; Kurosaki, Yuji; Kawasaki, Hiromu

    2004-01-01

    Previous studies showed that nicotine induces adrenergic nerve-dependent vasodilation that is mediated by endogenous calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) released from CGRP-containing (CGRPergic) nerves. The mechanisms underlying the nicotine-induced vasodilation were further studied. Rat mesenteric vascular beds without endothelium were contracted by perfusion with Krebs solution containing methoxamine, and the perfusion pressure was measured with a pressure transducer. Perfusion of nicotine (1–100 μM) for 1 min caused concentration-dependent vasodilation. Capsazepine (vanilloid receptor-1 antagonist; 1–10 μM) and ruthenium red (inhibitor of vanilloid response; 1–30 μM) concentration-dependently inhibited the nicotine-induced vasodilation without affecting the vasodilator response to exogenous CGRP. Nicotine-induced vasodilation was not inhibited by treatment with 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) receptor antagonist (L-DOPA cyclohexyl ester; 0.001–10 μM), dopamine D1 receptor-selective antagonist (SCH23390; 1–10 μM), dopamine D2 receptor antagonist (haloperidol; 0.1–0.5 μM), ATP P2x receptor-desensitizing agonist (α,β-methylene ATP; 1–10 μM), adenosine A2 receptor antagonist (8(p-sulfophenyl)theophylline; 10–50 μM) or neuropeptide Y (NPY)-Y1 receptor antagonist (BIBP3226; 0.1–0.5 μM). Immunohistochemical staining of the mesenteric artery showed dense innervation of CGRP- and vanilloid receptor-1-positive nerves, with both immunostainings appearing in the same neuron. The mesenteric artery was also densely innervated by NPY-positive nerves. Double immunostainings showed that both NPY and CGRP immunoreactivities appeared in the same neuron of the artery. These results suggest that nicotine acts on presynaptic nicotinic receptors to release adrenergic neurotransmitter(s) or related substance(s), which then stimulate vanilloid receptor-1 on CGRPergic nerves, resulting in CGRP release and vasodilation. PMID:15249421

  10. Multiple binding sites in the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: An opportunity for polypharmacolgy.

    PubMed

    Iturriaga-Vásquez, Patricio; Alzate-Morales, Jans; Bermudez, Isabel; Varas, Rodrigo; Reyes-Parada, Miguel

    2015-11-01

    For decades, the development of selective compounds has been the main goal for chemists and biologists involved in drug discovery. However, diverse lines of evidence indicate that polypharmacological agents, i.e. those that act simultaneously at various protein targets, might show better profiles than selective ligands, regarding both efficacy and side effects. On the other hand, the availability of the crystal structure of different receptors allows a detailed analysis of the main interactions between drugs and receptors in a specific binding site. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) constitute a large and diverse family of ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) that, as a product of its modulation, regulate neurotransmitter release, which in turns produce a global neuromodulation of the central nervous system. nAChRs are pentameric protein complexes in such a way that expression of compatible subunits can lead to various receptor assemblies or subtypes. The agonist binding site, located at the extracellular region, exhibits different properties depending on the subunits that conform the receptor. In the last years, it has been recognized that nAChRs could also contain one or more allosteric sites which could bind non-classical nicotinic ligands including several therapeutically useful drugs. The presence of multiple binding sites in nAChRs offers an interesting possibility for the development of novel polypharmacological agents with a wide spectrum of actions. PMID:26318763

  11. UBXN2A regulates nicotinic receptor degradation by modulating the E3 ligase activity of CHIP.

    PubMed

    Teng, Yanfen; Rezvani, Khosrow; De Biasi, Mariella

    2015-10-15

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) containing the α3 subunit are known for their prominent role in normal ganglionic transmission while their involvement in the mechanisms underlying nicotine addiction and smoking-related disease has been emerging only in recent years. The amount of information available on the maturation and trafficking of α3-containing nAChRs is limited. We previously showed that UBXN2A is a p97 adaptor protein that facilitates the maturation and trafficking of α3-containing nAChRs. Further investigation of the mechanisms of UBXN2A actions revealed that the protein interacts with CHIP (carboxyl terminus of Hsc70 interacting protein), whose ubiquitin E3 ligase activity regulates the degradation of several disease-related proteins. We show that CHIP displays E3 ligase activity toward the α3 nAChR subunit and contributes to its ubiquitination and subsequent degradation. UBXN2A interferes with CHIP-mediated ubiquitination of α3 and protects the nicotinic receptor subunit from endoplasmic reticulum associated degradation (ERAD). UBXN2A also cross-talks with VCP/p97 and HSC70/HSP70 proteins in a complex where α3 is likely to be targeted by CHIP. Overall,we identify CHIP as an E3 ligase for α3 and UBXN2A as a protein that may efficiently regulate the stability of CHIP's client substrates. PMID:26265139

  12. α6* nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression and function in a visual salience circuit

    PubMed Central

    Mackey, Elisha D.W.; Engle, Staci E.; Kim, Mi Ran; O’Neill, Heidi C.; Wageman, Charles R.; Patzlaff, Natalie E.; Wang, Ying; Grady, Sharon R.; McIntosh, J. Michael; Marks, Michael J.; Lester, Henry A.; Drenan, Ryan M.

    2012-01-01

    Nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChRs) containing α6 subunits are expressed in only a few brain areas, including midbrain dopamine (DA) neurons, noradrenergic neurons of the locus coeruleus, and retinal ganglion cells. To better understand the regional and subcellular expression pattern of α6-containing nAChRs, we created and studied transgenic mice expressing a variant α6 subunit with GFP fused in-frame in the M3–M4 intracellular loop. Inα6-GFP transgenic mice, α6-dependent synaptosomal DA release and radioligand binding experiments confirmed correct expression and function in vivo. In addition to strong α6* nAChR expression in glutamatergic retinal axons which terminate in superficial superior colliculus (sSC), we also found α6 subunit expression in a subset of GABAergic cell bodies in this brain area. In patch clamp recordings from sSC neurons in brain slices from mice expressing hypersensitive α6* nAChRs, we confirmed functional, postsynaptic α6* nAChR expression. Further, sSC GABAergic neurons expressing α6* nAChRs exhibit a tonic conductance mediated by standing activation of hypersensitiveα6* nAChRs by ACh. α6* nAChRs also appear in a subpopulation of SC neurons in output layers. Finally, selective activation of α6* nAChRs in vivo induced sSC neuronal activation as measured with c-Fos expression. Together, these results demonstrate that α6* nAChRs are uniquely situated to mediate cholinergic modulation of glutamate and GABA release in SC. The SC has emerged as a potential key brain area responsible for transmitting short-latency salience signals to thalamus and midbrain DA neurons, and these results suggest that α6* nAChRs may be important for nicotinic cholinergic sensitization of this pathway. PMID:22836257

  13. Menthol Enhances the Desensitization of Human α3β4 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors.

    PubMed

    Ton, Hoai T; Smart, Amanda E; Aguilar, Brittany L; Olson, Thao T; Kellar, Kenneth J; Ahern, Gerard P

    2015-08-01

    The α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtype is widely expressed in the peripheral and central nervous systems, including in airway sensory nerves. The nAChR subtype transduces the irritant effects of nicotine in tobacco smoke and, in certain brain areas, may be involved in nicotine addiction and/or withdrawal. Menthol, a widely used additive in cigarettes, is a potential analgesic and/or counterirritant at sensory nerves and may also influence nicotine's actions in the brain. We examined menthol's effects on recombinant human α3β4 nAChRs and native nAChRs in mouse sensory neurons. Menthol markedly decreased nAChR activity as assessed by Ca(2+) imaging, (86)Rb(+) efflux, and voltage-clamp measurements. Coapplication of menthol with acetylcholine or nicotine increased desensitization, demonstrated by an increase in the rate and magnitude of the current decay and a reduction of the current integral. These effects increased with agonist concentration. Pretreatment with menthol followed by its washout did not affect agonist-induced desensitization, suggesting that menthol must be present during the application of agonist to augment desensitization. Notably, menthol acted in a voltage-independent manner and reduced the mean open time of single channels without affecting their conductance, arguing against a simple channel-blocking effect. Further, menthol slowed or prevented the recovery of nAChRs from desensitization, indicating that it probably stabilizes a desensitized state. Moreover, menthol at concentrations up to 1 mM did not compete for the orthosteric nAChR binding site labeled by [(3)H]epibatidine. Taken together, these data indicate that menthol promotes desensitization of α3β4 nAChRs by an allosteric action. PMID:25964258

  14. Functional expression of human α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in human embryonic kidney 293 cells.

    PubMed

    Gong, Yuan; Jiang, Ji-Hong; Li, Shi-Tong

    2016-09-01

    The functional expression of recombinant α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells has presented a challenge. Resistance to inhibitors of cholinesterase 3 (RIC‑3) has been confirmed to act as a molecular chaperone of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. The primary objectives of the present study were to investigate whether the co‑expression of human (h)RIC‑3 with human α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in HEK 293 cells facilitates functional expression of the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Subsequent to transfection, western blotting and polymerase chain reaction were used to test the expression of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and RIC-3. The α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor was expressed alone or co‑expressed with hRIC‑3 in the HEK 293 cells. Drug‑containing solution was then applied to the cells via a gravity‑driven perfusion system. Calcium influx in the cells was analyzed using calcium imaging. Nicotine did not induce calcium influx in the HEK 293 cells expressing human α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor only. However, in the cells co‑expressing human RIC‑3 and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, nicotine induced calcium influx via the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in a concentration‑dependent manner (concentration required to elicit 50% of the maximal effect=29.21 µM). Taken together, the results of the present study suggested that the co‑expression of RIC‑3 in HEK 293 cells facilitated the functional expression of the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. PMID:27430244

  15. An autoradiographic analysis of cholinergic receptors in mouse brain after chronic nicotine treatment

    SciTech Connect

    Pauly, J.R.; Marks, M.J.; Gross, S.D.; Collins, A.C. )

    1991-09-01

    Quantitative autoradiographic procedures were used to examine the effects of chronic nicotine infusion on the number of central nervous system nicotinic cholinergic receptors. Female DBA mice were implanted with jugular cannulas and infused with saline or various doses of nicotine (0.25, 0.5, 1.0 or 2.0 mg/kg/hr) for 10 days. The animals were then sacrificed and the brains were removed and frozen in isopentane. Cryostat sections were collected and prepared for autoradiographic procedures as previously described. Nicotinic cholinergic receptors were labeled with L-(3H)nicotine or alpha-(125I)bungarotoxin; (3H)quinuclidinyl benzilate was used to measure muscarinic cholinergic receptor binding. Chronic nicotine infusion increased the number of sites labeled by (3H)nicotine in most brain areas. However, the extent of the increase in binding as well as the dose-response curves for the increase were widely different among brain regions. After the highest treatment dose, binding was increased in 67 of 86 regions measured. Septal and thalamic regions were most resistant to change. Nicotinic binding measured by alpha-(125I)bungarotoxin also increased after chronic treatment, but in a less robust fashion. At the highest treatment dose, only 26 of 80 regions were significantly changes. Muscarinic binding was not altered after chronic nicotine treatment. These data suggest that brain regions are not equivalent in the mechanisms that regulate alterations in nicotinic cholinergic receptor binding after chronic nicotine treatment.

  16. α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the medial habenula modulate the mesolimbic dopaminergic response to acute nicotine in vivo.

    PubMed

    McCallum, Sarah E; Cowe, Matthew A; Lewis, Samuel W; Glick, Stanley D

    2012-09-01

    Habenulo-interpeduncular nicotinic receptors, particularly those containing α3, β4 and α5 subunits, have recently been implicated in the reinforcing effects of nicotine. Our laboratory has shown that injection of α3β4 nicotinic receptor antagonists into the medial habenula (MHb) decreases self-administration of multiple abused drugs, including nicotine (Glick et al., 2006, 2008; 2011). However, it is unclear whether blockade of MHb nicotinic receptors has a direct effect on mesolimbic dopamine. Here, we performed in vivo microdialysis in female rats. Microdialysis probes were implanted into the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) and α3β4 nicotinic receptor antagonists (18-methoxycoronaridine; 18-MC or α-conotoxin AuIB; AuIB), were injected into the ipsilateral MHb, just prior to systemic nicotine (0.4 mg/kg, s.c.). Dialysate samples were collected before and after drug administration and levels of extracellular dopamine and its metabolites were measured using HPLC. Acute nicotine administration increased levels of extracellular dopamine and its metabolites in the NAcc. Pre-treatment with intra-habenular AuIB or 18-MC prevented nicotine-induced increases in accumbal dopamine. Neither drug had an effect on nicotine-induced increases in dopamine metabolites, suggesting that α3β4 receptors do not play a role in dopamine metabolism. The effect of intra-habenular blockade of α3β4 receptors on NAcc dopamine was selective for acute nicotine: neither AuIB nor 18-MC prevented increases in NAcc dopamine stimulated by acute d-amphetamine or morphine. These results suggest the mesolimbic response to acute nicotine, but not to acute administration of other drugs of abuse, is directly modulated by α3β4 nicotinic receptors in the MHb, and emphasize a critical role for habenular nicotinic receptors in nicotine's reinforcing effects. PMID:22561751

  17. Role of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in Alzheimer's disease pathology and treatment.

    PubMed

    Lombardo, Sylvia; Maskos, Uwe

    2015-09-01

    Alzheimer's Disease (AD) is the major form of senile dementia, characterized by neuronal loss, extracellular deposits, and neurofibrillary tangles. It is accompanied by a loss of cholinergic tone, and acetylcholine (ACh) levels in the brain, which were hypothesized to be responsible for the cognitive decline observed in AD. Current medication is restricted to enhancing cholinergic signalling for symptomatic treatment of AD patients. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor family (nAChR) and the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor family (mAChR) are the target of ACh in the brain. Both families of receptors are affected in AD. It was demonstrated that amyloid beta (Aβ) interacts with nAChRs. Here we discuss how Aβ activates or inhibits nAChRs, and how this interaction contributes to AD pathology. We will discuss the potential role of nAChRs as therapeutic targets. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'The Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: From Molecular Biology to Cognition'. PMID:25514383

  18. Purification and characterization of an. alpha. -bungarotoxin receptor that forms a functional nicotinic channel

    SciTech Connect

    Gotti, C.; Ogando, A.E.; Moretti, M.; Clementi, F. ); Hanke, W.; Schlue, R. )

    1991-04-15

    Neither the structure nor the function of {alpha}-bungarotoxin ({alpha}Bgtx) binding molecules in the nervous system have yet been completely defined, although it is known that some of these molecules are related to cation channels and some are not. Using an improved method of affinity chromatography, the authors have isolated a toxin binding molecule from chicken optic lobe that contains at least three subunits with apparent M{sub r} values of 52,000, 57,000, and 67,000. The M{sub r} 57,000 subunit binds {alpha}Bgtx receptors of human neuroblastoma cells, fetal calf muscle, and chicken optic lobe but not by antibodies raised against Torpedo acetylcholine receptor, the serum of myasthenic patients, or monoclonal antibody 35. {sup 125}I-labeled {alpha}Bgtx binding to the isolated receptor is blocked, with the same potency, by nicotinic agonists and antagonists, such as nicotine, neuronal bungarotoxin and, d-tubocurarine. When reconstituted in a planar lipid bilayer, the purified {alpha}Bgtx receptor forms cationic channels with a conductance of 50 pS. These channels are activated in a dose-dependent manner by carbamylcholine and blocked by d-tubocurarine.

  19. Differential Responses of Hippocampal Neurons and Astrocytes to Nicotine and Hypoxia in the Fetal Guinea Pig

    PubMed Central

    Blutstein, Tamara; Castello, Michael A.; Viechweg, Shaun S.; Hadjimarkou, Maria M.; McQuail, Joseph A.; Holder, Mary; Thompson, Loren P.; Mong, Jessica A.

    2012-01-01

    In utero exposure to cigarette smoke has severe consequences for the developing fetus, including increased risk of birth complications and behavioral and learning disabilities later in life. Evidence from animal models suggests that the cognitive deficits may be a consequence of in utero nicotine exposure in the brain during critical developmental periods. However, maternal smoking exposes the fetus to not only nicotine but also a hypoxic intrauterine environment. Thus, both nicotine and hypoxia are capable of initiating cellular cascades, leading to long-term changes in synaptic patterning that have the potential to affect cognitive functions. The present study investigates the combined effect of in utero exposure to nicotine and hypoxia on neuronal and glial elements in the hippocampal CA1 field. Fetal guinea pigs were exposed in utero to normoxic or hypoxic conditions in the presence or absence of nicotine. Hypoxia increased the protein levels of matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) and synaptophysin and decreased the neural density as measured by NeuN immunoreactivity (ir). Nicotine exposure had no effect on these neuronal parameters but dramatically increased the density of astrocytes immunopositive for glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). Further investigation into the effects of in utero nicotine exposure revealed that both GFAP-ir and NeuN-ir in the CA1 field were significantly reduced in adulthood. Taken together, our data suggest that prenatal exposure to nicotine and hypoxia not only alters synaptic patterning acutely during fetal development, but that nicotine also has long-term consequences that are observed well into adulthood. Moreover, these effects most likely take place through distinct mechanisms. PMID:23192463

  20. Nicotine reinforcement is reduced by cannabinoid CB1 receptor blockade in the ventral tegmental area.

    PubMed

    Simonnet, Amelie; Cador, Martine; Caille, Stephanie

    2013-11-01

    Cannabinoid type 1 (CB1) receptors control the motivational properties and reinforcing effects of nicotine. Indeed, peripheral administration of a CB1 receptor antagonist dramatically decreases both nicotine taking and seeking. However, the neural substrates through which the cannabinoid CB1 receptors regulate the voluntary intake of nicotine remain to be elucidated. In the present study, we sought to determine whether central injections of a CB1 receptor antagonist delivered either into the ventral tegmental area (VTA) or the nucleus accumbens (NAC) may alter nicotine intravenous self-administration (IVSA). Rats were first trained to self-administer nicotine (30 μg/kg/0.1 ml). The effect of central infusions of the CB1 antagonist AM 251 (0, 1 and 10 μg/0.5 μl/side) on nicotine-taking behavior was then tested. Intra-VTA infusions of AM 251 dose dependently reduced IVSA with a significant decrease for the dose 10 μg/0.5 μl/side. Moreover, operant responding for water was unaltered by intra-VTA AM 251 at the same dose. Surprisingly, intra-NAC delivery of AM 251 did not alter nicotine behavior at all. These data suggest that in rats chronically exposed to nicotine IVSA, the cannabinoid CB1 receptors located in the VTA rather than in the NAC specifically control nicotine reinforcement and, subsequently, nicotine-taking behavior. PMID:22784230

  1. Glutamatergic synapse formation is promoted by α7-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Lozada, Adrian F; Wang, Xulong; Gounko, Natalia V; Massey, Kerri A; Duan, Jingjing; Liu, Zhaoping; Berg, Darwin K

    2012-05-30

    Glutamate is the primary excitatory transmitter in adult brain, acting through synapses on dendritic spines and shafts. Early in development, however, when glutamatergic synapses are only beginning to form, nicotinic cholinergic excitation is already widespread; it is mediated by acetylcholine activating nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) that generate waves of activity across brain regions. A major class of nAChRs contributing at this time is a species containing α7 subunits (α7-nAChRs). These receptors are highly permeable to calcium, influence a variety of calcium-dependent events, and are diversely distributed throughout the developing CNS. Here we show that α7-nAChRs unexpectedly promote formation of glutamatergic synapses during development. The dependence on α7-nAChRs becomes clear when comparing wild-type (WT) mice with mice constitutively lacking the α7-nAChR gene. Ultrastructural analysis, immunostaining, and patch-clamp recording all reveal synaptic deficits when α7-nAChR input is absent. Similarly, nicotinic activation of α7-nAChRs in WT organotypic culture, as well as cell culture, increases the number of glutamatergic synapses. RNA interference demonstrates that the α7-nAChRs must be expressed in the neuron being innervated for normal innervation to occur. Moreover, the deficits persist throughout the developmental period of major de novo synapse formation and are still fully apparent in the adult. GABAergic synapses, in contrast, are undiminished in number under such conditions. As a result, mice lacking α7-nAChRs have an altered balance in the excitatory/inhibitory input they receive. This ratio represents a fundamental feature of neural networks and shows for the first time that endogenous nicotinic cholinergic signaling plays a key role in network construction. PMID:22649244

  2. A key role for the N/OFQ-NOP receptor system in modulating nicotine taking in a model of nicotine and alcohol co-administration.

    PubMed

    Cippitelli, Andrea; Schoch, Jennifer; Debevec, Ginamarie; Brunori, Gloria; Zaveri, Nurulain T; Toll, Lawrence

    2016-01-01

    Alcohol and nicotine are often co-abused. Although the N/OFQ-NOP receptor system is considered a potential target for development of drug abuse pharmacotherapies, especially for alcoholism, little is known about the role of this system in nicotine dependence. Furthermore, the effect of prior history of nicotine dependence on subsequent nicotine and alcohol taking is understudied. Using an operant co-administration paradigm, in which rats concurrently self-administer nicotine and alcohol, we found that nicotine dependent rats increased nicotine self-administration over time as compared to non-dependent animals, while patterns of alcohol lever pressing did not change between groups. Pretreatment with the potent NOP receptor agonist AT-202 (0.3-3 mg/kg) increased nicotine lever pressing of both dependent and non-dependent groups, whereas the selective antagonist SB612111 (1-10 mg/kg) elicited a clear reduction of nicotine responses, in both dependent and non-dependent rats. In parallel, AT-202 only produced minor changes on alcohol responses and SB612111 reduced alcohol taking at a dose that also reduced locomotor behavior. Results indicate that a history of nicotine dependence affects subsequent nicotine- but not alcohol-maintained responding, and that NOP receptor antagonism, rather than agonism, blocks nicotine self-administration, which strongly suggests a critical role for the endogenous N/OFQ in the modulation of nicotine reinforcement processes. PMID:27199205

  3. A key role for the N/OFQ-NOP receptor system in modulating nicotine taking in a model of nicotine and alcohol co-administration

    PubMed Central

    Cippitelli, Andrea; Schoch, Jennifer; Debevec, Ginamarie; Brunori, Gloria; Zaveri, Nurulain T.; Toll, Lawrence

    2016-01-01

    Alcohol and nicotine are often co-abused. Although the N/OFQ-NOP receptor system is considered a potential target for development of drug abuse pharmacotherapies, especially for alcoholism, little is known about the role of this system in nicotine dependence. Furthermore, the effect of prior history of nicotine dependence on subsequent nicotine and alcohol taking is understudied. Using an operant co-administration paradigm, in which rats concurrently self-administer nicotine and alcohol, we found that nicotine dependent rats increased nicotine self-administration over time as compared to non-dependent animals, while patterns of alcohol lever pressing did not change between groups. Pretreatment with the potent NOP receptor agonist AT-202 (0.3–3 mg/kg) increased nicotine lever pressing of both dependent and non-dependent groups, whereas the selective antagonist SB612111 (1–10 mg/kg) elicited a clear reduction of nicotine responses, in both dependent and non-dependent rats. In parallel, AT-202 only produced minor changes on alcohol responses and SB612111 reduced alcohol taking at a dose that also reduced locomotor behavior. Results indicate that a history of nicotine dependence affects subsequent nicotine- but not alcohol-maintained responding, and that NOP receptor antagonism, rather than agonism, blocks nicotine self-administration, which strongly suggests a critical role for the endogenous N/OFQ in the modulation of nicotine reinforcement processes. PMID:27199205

  4. Blockade of Dopamine D4 Receptors Attenuates Reinstatement of Extinguished Nicotine-Seeking Behavior in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Yijin; Pushparaj, Abhiram; Le Strat, Yann; Gamaleddin, Islam; Barnes, Chanel; Justinova, Zuzana; Goldberg, Steven R; Le Foll, Bernard

    2012-01-01

    Since cloning of the dopamine receptor D4 (DRD4), its role in the brain has remained unclear. It has been reported that polymorphism of the DRD4 gene in humans is associated with reactivity to cues related to tobacco smoking. However, the role of DRD4 in animal models of nicotine addiction has seldom been explored. In our study, male Long-Evans rats learned to intravenously self-administer nicotine under a fixed-ratio (FR) schedule of reinforcement. Effects of the selective DRD4 antagonist L-745,870 were evaluated on nicotine self-administration behavior and on reinstatement of extinguished nicotine-seeking behavior induced by nicotine-associated cues or by priming injections of nicotine. L-745,870 was also tested on reinstatement of extinguished food-seeking behavior as a control. In addition, the selective DRD4 agonist PD 168,077 was tested for its ability to reinstate extinguished nicotine-seeking behavior. Finally, L-745,870 was tested in Sprague Dawley rats trained to discriminate administration of 0.4 mg/kg nicotine from vehicle under an FR schedule of food delivery. L-745,870 significantly attenuated reinstatement of nicotine-seeking induced by both nicotine-associated cues and nicotine priming. In contrast, L-745,870 did not affect established nicotine self-administration behavior or reinstatement of food-seeking behavior induced by food cues or food priming. L-745,870 did not produce nicotine-like discriminative-stimulus effects and did not alter discriminative-stimulus effects of nicotine. PD 168,077 did not reinstate extinguished nicotine-seeking behavior. As DRD4 blockade by L-745,870 selectively attenuated both cue- and nicotine-induced reinstatement of nicotine-seeking behavior, without affecting cue- or food-induced reinstatement of food-seeking behavior, DRD4 antagonists are potential therapeutic agents against tobacco smoking relapse. PMID:22030716

  5. Promoter polymorphisms and transcript levels of nicotinic receptor CHRNA5.

    PubMed

    Falvella, Felicia S; Galvan, Antonella; Colombo, Francesca; Frullanti, Elisa; Pastorino, Ugo; Dragani, Tommaso A

    2010-09-01

    Chromosomal locus 15q25, implicated in lung cancer risk and nicotine dependence, shows extensive linkage disequilibrium that complicates identification of causal variation. Cholinergic receptor nicotinic alpha5 (CHRNA5) has been identified as a lung cancer risk factor. We identified by sequence analysis three haplotypes (delTTC, insATC, and insTGG) in the 5' promoter region and three at the 3'-untranslated region of CHRNA5. Linkage disequilibrium analysis of the 5' variants showed that the insTGG haplotype is associated with three tightly linked risk alleles (nicotine dependence, lung cancer, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). The three CHRNA5 promoter haplotypes were statistically significantly associated with lung CHRNA5 transcript levels, determined by real-time polymerase chain reaction. In nontumor lung parenchyma from 68 patients who underwent lung lobectomy, the delTTC haplotype was associated with the highest CHRNA5 transcript levels (relative quantification units = 1.82), whereas the insTGG haplotype was associated with the lowest (0.88 units, P(diff) < .001, Welch t test; all statistical tests were two-sided). Luciferase reporter assays in human lung cancer cell lines A549, H460, H520, and H596 also showed that the 5' region haplotypes were statistically significantly associated with changes in CHRNA5 promoter activity, whereas the 3'-untranslated region variants were not. PMID:20733116

  6. NMDA receptors regulate nicotine-enhanced brain reward function and intravenous nicotine self-administration: role of the ventral tegmental area and central nucleus of the amygdala.

    PubMed

    Kenny, Paul J; Chartoff, Elena; Roberto, Marisa; Carlezon, William A; Markou, Athina

    2009-01-01

    Nicotine is considered an important component of tobacco responsible for the smoking habit in humans. Nicotine increases glutamate-mediated transmission throughout brain reward circuitries. This action of nicotine could potentially contribute to its intrinsic rewarding and reward-enhancing properties, which motivate consumption of the drug. Here we show that the competitive N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist LY235959 (0.5-2.5 mg per kg) abolished nicotine-enhanced brain reward function, reflected in blockade of the lowering of intracranial self-stimulation (ICSS) thresholds usually observed after experimenter-administered (0.25 mg per kg) or intravenously self-administered (0.03 mg per kg per infusion) nicotine injections. The highest LY235959 dose (5 mg per kg) tested reversed the hedonic valence of nicotine from positive to negative, reflected in nicotine-induced elevations of ICSS thresholds. LY235959 doses that reversed nicotine-induced lowering of ICSS thresholds also markedly decreased nicotine self-administration without altering responding for food reinforcement, whereas the alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid receptor antagonist NBQX had no effects on nicotine intake. In addition, nicotine self-administration upregulated NMDA receptor subunit expression in the central nucleus of the amygdala (CeA) and ventral tegmental area (VTA), suggesting important interactions between nicotine and the NMDA receptor. Furthermore, nicotine (1 microM) increased NMDA receptor-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents in rat CeA slices, similar to its previously described effects in the VTA. Finally, infusion of LY235959 (0.1-10 ng per side) into the CeA or VTA decreased nicotine self-administration. Taken together, these data suggest that NMDA receptors, including those in the CeA and VTA, gate the magnitude and valence of the effects of nicotine on brain reward systems, thereby regulating motivation to consume the drug. PMID:18418357

  7. Diacylglycerol lipase disinhibits VTA dopamine neurons during chronic nicotine exposure

    PubMed Central

    Buczynski, Matthew W.; Herman, Melissa A.; Natividad, Luis A.; Irimia, Cristina; Polis, Ilham Y.; Pugh, Holly; Chang, Jae Won; Niphakis, Micah J.; Cravatt, Benjamin F.; Roberto, Marisa; Parsons, Loren H.

    2016-01-01

    Chronic nicotine exposure (CNE) alters synaptic transmission in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) in a manner that enhances dopaminergic signaling and promotes nicotine use. The present experiments identify a correlation between enhanced production of the endogenous cannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) and diminished release of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA in the VTA following CNE. To study the functional role of on-demand 2-AG signaling in GABAergic synapses, we used 1,2,3-triazole urea compounds to selectively inhibit 2-AG biosynthesis by diacylglycerol lipase (DAGL). The potency and selectivity of these inhibitors were established in rats in vitro (rat brain proteome), ex vivo (brain slices), and in vivo (intracerebroventricular administration) using activity-based protein profiling and targeted metabolomics analyses. Inhibition of DAGL (2-AG biosynthesis) rescues nicotine-induced VTA GABA signaling following CNE. Conversely, enhancement of 2-AG signaling in naïve rats by inhibiting 2-AG degradation recapitulates the loss of nicotine-induced GABA signaling evident following CNE. DAGL inhibition reduces nicotine self-administration without disrupting operant responding for a nondrug reinforcer or motor activity. Collectively, these findings provide a detailed characterization of selective inhibitors of rat brain DAGL and demonstrate that excessive 2-AG signaling contributes to a loss of inhibitory GABAergic constraint of VTA excitability following CNE. PMID:26755579

  8. Insect Nicotinic Receptor Agonists as Flea Adulticides in Small Animals

    PubMed Central

    Vo, Dai Tan; Hsu, Walter H.; Martin, Richard J.

    2013-01-01

    Fleas are significant ectoparasites of small animals. They can be a severe irritant to animals and serve as a vector for a number of infectious diseases. In this article, we discuss the pharmacological characteristics of four insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) agonists used as fleacides in dogs and cats, which include three neonicotinoids (imidacloprid, nitenpyram, and dinotefuran) and spinosad. Insect nAChR agonists are one of the most important new classes of insecticides, which are used to control sucking insects both on plants and on companion animals. These new compounds provide a new approach for practitioners to safely and effectively eliminate fleas. PMID:20646191

  9. Effects of antihistamines on the function of human α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Sadek, Bassem; Khanian, Seyedeh Soha; Ashoor, Abrar; Prytkova, Tatiana; Ghattas, Mohammad A; Atatreh, Noor; Nurulain, Syed M; Yang, Keun-Hang Susan; Howarth, Frank Christopher; Oz, Murat

    2015-01-01

    Effects of the histamine H₁ receptor (H1R) antagonists (antihistamines), promethazine (PMZ), orphenadrine (ORP), chlorpheniramine (CLP), pyrilamine (PYR), diphenhydramine (DPH), citerizine (CTZ), and triprolidine (TRP) on the functional properties of the cloned α7 subunit of the human nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expressed in Xenopus oocytes were investigated. Antihistamines inhibited the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in the order PYR>CLP>TRP>PMZ>ORP≥DPH≥CTZ. Among the antihistamines, PYR showed the highest reversible inhibition of acetylcholine (100 µM)-induced responses with IC₅₀ of 6.2 µM. PYR-induced inhibition was independent of the membrane potential and could not be reversed by increasing the concentration of acetylcholine. Specific binding of [¹²⁵I] α-bungarotoxin, a selective antagonist for α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, was not changed in the presence of PYR suggesting a non-competitive inhibition of nicotinic receptors. In line with functional experiments, docking studies indicated that PYR can potentially bind allosterically with the α7 transmembrane domain. Our results indicate that the H₂-H₄ receptor antagonists tested in this study (10 µM) showed negligible inhibition of α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. On the other hand, H₁ receptor antagonists inhibited the function of human α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, with varying potencies. These results emphasize the importance of α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor for future pharmacological/toxicological profiling. PMID:25445036

  10. Modulation of high- and low-frequency components of the cortical local field potential via nicotinic and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in anesthetized mice

    PubMed Central

    Waters, Jack

    2013-01-01

    Release of acetylcholine (ACh) in neocortex is important for learning, memory and attention tasks. The primary source of ACh in neocortex is axons ascending from the basal forebrain. Release of ACh from these axons evokes changes in the cortical local field potential (LFP), including a decline in low-frequency spectral power that is often referred to as desynchronization of the LFP and is thought to result from the activation of muscarinic ACh receptors. Using channelrhodopsin-2, we selectively stimulated the axons of only cholinergic basal forebrain neurons in primary somatosensory cortex of the urethane-anesthetized mouse while monitoring the LFP. Cholinergic stimulation caused desynchronization and two brief increases in higher-frequency power at stimulus onset and offset. Desynchronization (1–6 Hz) was localized, extending ≤ 1 mm from the edge of stimulation, and consisted of both nicotinic and muscarinic receptor-mediated components that were inhibited by mecamylamine and atropine, respectively. Hence we have identified a nicotinic receptor-mediated component to desynchronization. The increase in higher-frequency power (>10 Hz) at stimulus onset was also mediated by activation of nicotinic and muscarinic receptors. However, the increase in higher-frequency power (10–20 Hz) at stimulus offset was evoked by activation of muscarinic receptors and inhibited by activation of nicotinic receptors. We conclude that the activation of nicotinic and muscarinic ACh receptors in neocortex exerts several effects that are reflected in distinct frequency bands of the cortical LFP in urethane-anesthetized mice. PMID:24155009

  11. Differential effects of subtype-specific nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists on early and late hippocampal LTP.

    PubMed

    Kroker, Katja S; Rast, Georg; Rosenbrock, Holger

    2011-12-01

    Brain nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are involved in several neuropsychiatric disorders, e.g. Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, Tourette's syndrome, schizophrenia, depression, autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and anxiety. Currently, approaches selectively targeting the activation of specific nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are in clinical development for treatment of memory impairment of Alzheimer's disease patients. These are α4β2 and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists which are believed to enhance cholinergic and glutamatergic neurotransmission, respectively. In order to gain a better insight into the mechanistic role of these two nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in learning and memory, we investigated the effects of the α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist TC-1827 and the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor partial agonist SSR180711 on hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP), a widely accepted cellular experimental model of memory formation. Generally, LTP is distinguished in an early and a late form, the former being protein-synthesis independent and the latter being protein-synthesis dependent. TC-1827 was found to increase early LTP in a bell-shaped dose dependent manner, but did not affect late LTP. In contrast, the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor partial agonist SSR180711 showed enhancing effects on both early and late LTP in a bell-shaped manner. Furthermore, SSR180711 not only increased early LTP, but also transformed it into late LTP, which was not observed with the α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist. Therefore, based on these findings α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (partial) agonists appear to exhibit stronger efficacy on memory improvement than α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists. PMID:21968142

  12. Local Application of Drugs to Study Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Function in Mouse Brain Slices

    PubMed Central

    Engle, Staci E.; Broderick, Hilary J.; Drenan, Ryan M.

    2012-01-01

    Tobacco use leads to numerous health problems, including cancer, heart disease, emphysema, and stroke. Addiction to cigarette smoking is a prevalent neuropsychiatric disorder that stems from the biophysical and cellular actions of nicotine on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) throughout the central nervous system. Understanding the various nAChR subtypes that exist in brain areas relevant to nicotine addiction is a major priority. Experiments that employ electrophysiology techniques such as whole-cell patch clamp or two-electrode voltage clamp recordings are useful for pharmacological characterization of nAChRs of interest. Cells expressing nAChRs, such as mammalian tissue culture cells or Xenopus laevis oocytes, are physically isolated and are therefore easily studied using the tools of modern pharmacology. Much progress has been made using these techniques, particularly when the target receptor was already known and ectopic expression was easily achieved. Often, however, it is necessary to study nAChRs in their native environment: in neurons within brain slices acutely harvested from laboratory mice or rats. For example, mice expressing "hypersensitive" nAChR subunits such as α4 L9′A mice 1 and α6 L9′S mice 2, allow for unambiguous identification of neurons based on their functional expression of a specific nAChR subunit. Although whole-cell patch clamp recordings from neurons in brain slices is routinely done by the skilled electrophysiologist, it is challenging to locally apply drugs such as acetylcholine or nicotine to the recorded cell within a brain slice. Dilution of drugs into the superfusate (bath application) is not rapidly reversible, and U-tube systems are not easily adapted to work with brain slices. In this paper, we describe a method for rapidly applying nAChR-activating drugs to neurons recorded in adult mouse brain slices. Standard whole-cell recordings are made from neurons in slices, and a second micropipette filled with a drug of

  13. Mixed nicotinic and muscarinic features of cholinergic receptor coupled to secretion in bovine chromaffin cells.

    PubMed Central

    Shirvan, M H; Pollard, H B; Heldman, E

    1991-01-01

    Acetylcholine evokes release from cultured bovine chromaffin cells by a mechanism that is believed to be classically nicotinic. However, we found that the full muscarinic agonist oxotremorine-M (Oxo-M) induced a robust catecholamine (CA) secretion. By contrast, muscarine, pilocarpine, bethanechol, and McN-A-343 did not elicit any secretory response. Desensitization of the response to nicotine by Oxo-M and desensitization of the response to Oxo-M by nicotine suggest that both nicotine and Oxo-M were acting at the same receptor. Additional experiments supporting this conclusion show that nicotine-induced secretion and Oxo-M-induced secretion were similarly blocked by various muscarinic and nicotinic antagonists. Moreover, secretion induced by nicotine and Oxo-M were Ca2+ dependent, and both agonists induced 45Ca2+ uptake. Equilibrium binding studies showed that [3H]Oxo-M bound to chromaffin cell membranes with a Kd value of 3.08 x 10(-8) M and a Hill coefficient of 1.00, suggesting one binding site for this ligand. Nicotine inhibited Oxo-M binding in a noncompetitive manner, suggesting that both ligands bind at two different sites on the same receptor. We propose that the receptor on bovine chromaffin cells that is coupled to secretion represents an unusual cholinergic receptor that has both nicotinic and muscarinic features. Images PMID:2052567

  14. Mixed nicotinic and muscarinic features of cholinergic receptor coupled to secretion in bovine chromaffin cells

    SciTech Connect

    Shirvan, M.H.; Pollard, H.B.; Heldman, E. )

    1991-06-01

    Acetylcholine evokes release from cultured bovine chromaffin cells by a mechanism that is believed to be classically nicotinic. However, the authors found that the full muscarinic agonist oxotremorine-M (Oxo-M) induced a robust catecholamine (CA) secretion. By contrast, muscarine, pilocarpine, bethanechol, and McN-A-343 did not elicit any secretory response. Desensitization of the response to nicotine by Oxo-M and desensitization of the response to Oxo-M by nicotine suggest that both nicotine and Oxo-M were acting at the same receptor. Additional experiments supporting this conclusion show that nicotine-induced secretion and Oxo-M-induced secretion were similarly blocked by various muscarinic and nicotinic antagonists. Moreover, secretion induced by nicotine and Oxo-M were Ca{sup 2+} dependent, and both agonists induced {sup 45}Ca{sup 2+} uptake. Equilibrium binding studies showed that ({sup 3}H)Oxo-M bound to chromaffin cell membranes with a K{sub d} value of 3.08 {times} 10{sup {minus}8}M and a Hill coefficient of 1.00, suggesting one binding site for this ligand. Nicotine inhibited Oxo-M binding in a noncompetitive manner, suggesting that both ligands bind at two different sites on the same receptor. They propose that the receptor on bovine chromaffin cells that is coupled to secretion represents an unusual cholinergic receptor that has both nicotinic and muscarinic features.

  15. Lynx1 and Aβ1-42 bind competitively to multiple nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes.

    PubMed

    Thomsen, Morten S; Arvaniti, Maria; Jensen, Majbrit M; Shulepko, Mikhail A; Dolgikh, Dmitry A; Pinborg, Lars H; Härtig, Wolfgang; Lyukmanova, Ekaterina N; Mikkelsen, Jens D

    2016-10-01

    Lynx1 regulates synaptic plasticity in the brain by regulating nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). It is not known to which extent Lynx1 can bind to endogenous nAChR subunits in the brain or how this interaction is affected by Alzheimer's disease pathology. We apply affinity purification to demonstrate that a water-soluble variant of human Lynx1 (Ws-Lynx1) isolates α3, α4, α5, α6, α7, β2, and β4 nAChR subunits from human and rat cortical extracts, and rat midbrain and olfactory bulb extracts, suggesting that Lynx1 forms complexes with multiple nAChR subtypes in the human and rodent brain. Incubation with Ws-Lynx1 decreases nicotine-mediated extracellular signal-regulated kinase phosphorylation in PC12 cells and striatal neurons, indicating that binding of Ws-Lynx1 is sufficient to inhibit signaling downstream of nAChRs. The effect of nicotine in PC12 cells is independent of α7 or α4β2 nAChRs, suggesting that Lynx1 can affect the function of native non-α7, non-α4β2 nAChR subtypes. We further show that Lynx1 and oligomeric β-amyloid1-42 compete for binding to several nAChR subunits, that Ws-Lynx1 prevents β-amyloid1-42-induced cytotoxicity in cortical neurons, and that cortical Lynx1 levels are decreased in a transgenic mouse model with concomitant β-amyloid and tau pathology. Our data suggest that Lynx1 binds to multiple nAChR subtypes in the brain and that this interaction might have functional and pathophysiological implications in relation to Alzheimer's disease. PMID:27460145

  16. Autoradiographic localization of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the brain of the zebra finch (Poephila guttata)

    SciTech Connect

    Watson, J.T.; Adkins-Regan, E.; Whiting, P.; Lindstrom, J.M.; Podleski, T.R.

    1988-08-08

    We have localized nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the zebra finch brain by using three 125I-labelled ligands: alpha bungarotoxin and two monoclonal antibodies to neuronal nicotinic receptors. Unfixed brains from intact adult male and female zebra finches were prepared for in vitro autoradiography. Low-resolution film autoradiograms and high-resolution emulsion autoradiograms were prepared for each of the three ligands. The major brain structures that bind all three of the ligands are hippocampus; hyperstriatum dorsalis; hyperstriatum ventralis; nucleus lentiformis mesencephali; nucleus pretectalis, some layers of the optic tectum; nucleus mesencephalicus lateralis; pars dorsalis; locus ceruleus; and all cranial motor nuclei except nucleus nervi hypoglossi. The major structures labelled only by (125I)-alpha bungarotoxin binding included hyperstriatum accessorium and the nuclei: preopticus medialis, medialis hypothalami posterioris, semilunaris, olivarius inferior, and the periventricular organ. Of the song control nuclei, nucleus magnocellularis of the anterior neostriatum; hyperstriatum ventralis, pars caudalis; nucleus intercollicularis; and nucleus hypoglossus were labelled. The binding patterns of the two antibodies were similar to one another but not identical. Both labelled nucleus spiriformis lateralis and nucleus geniculatus lateralis, pars ventralis especially heavily and also labelled the nucleus habenula medialis; nucleus subpretectalis; nucleus isthmi, pars magnocellularis; nucleus reticularis gigantocellularis; nucleus reticularis lateralis; nucleus tractus solitarii; nucleus vestibularis dorsolateralis; nucleus vestibularis lateralis; nucleus descendens nervi trigemini; and the deep cerebellar nuclei.

  17. Route of Nicotine Administration Influences In Vivo Dopamine Neuron Activity: Habituation, Needle Injection, and Cannula Infusion

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Yu; Zhang, Tianxiang; Li, Wei; Doyon, William; Dani, John A.

    2010-01-01

    Mesolimbic dopamine (DA) systems play a critical role in tobacco addiction driven by nicotine. Nicotine activates midbrain DA neurons and, consequently, elevates DA concentrations in targets, especially in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) of the ventral striatum. The route of drug administration influences the impact of addictive drugs. Here, we examine whether the nature of the administration alters DA neuron activity and DA concentrations in the NAc. Using unhabituated naïve freely moving rats, microdialysis measurements showed that nicotine administered via needle injection caused greater DA release in the NAc than the same dose administered via an implanted chronic cannula. After habituation to the needle injections, however, there was no significant difference in DA signaling between the needle and cannula routes of administration. Consistent with these microdialysis results after habituation, our in vivo tetrode unit recordings showed no significant difference in midbrain DA neuron activity in response to nicotine delivered by needle or cannula as long as predictive cues were avoided. PMID:19714495

  18. Presynaptic Type III Neuregulin 1 Is Required for Sustained Enhancement of Hippocampal Transmission by Nicotine and for Axonal Targeting of α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Zhong, Chongbo; Du, Chuang; Hancock, Melissa; Mertz, Marjolijn; Talmage, David A.; Role, Lorna W.

    2009-01-01

    Both the neuregulin 1 (Nrg1) and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7*nAChRs) genes have been linked to schizophrenia and associated sensory–motor gating deficits. The prominence of nicotine addiction in schizophrenic patients is reflected in the normalization of gating deficits by nicotine self-administration. To assess the role of presynaptic type III Nrg1 at hippocampal–accumbens synapses, an important relay in sensory–motor gating, we developed a specialized preparation of chimeric circuits in vitro. Synaptic relays from Nrg1tm1Lwr heterozygote ventral hippocampal slices to wild-type (WT) nucleus accumbens neurons (1) lack a sustained, α7*nAChRs-mediated phase of synaptic potentiation seen in comparable WT/WT circuits and (2) are deficient in targeting α7*nAChRs to presynaptic sites. Thus, selective alteration of the level of presynaptic type III Nrg1 dramatically affects the modulation of glutamatergic transmission at ventral hippocampal to nucleus accumbens synapses. PMID:18784291

  19. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors mediate donepezil-induced oligodendrocyte differentiation.

    PubMed

    Imamura, Osamu; Arai, Masaaki; Dateki, Minori; Ogata, Toru; Uchida, Ryuji; Tomoda, Hiroshi; Takishima, Kunio

    2015-12-01

    Oligodendrocytes are the myelin-forming cells of the central nervous system (CNS). Failure of myelin development and oligodendrocyte loss results in serious human disorders, including multiple sclerosis. Here, we show that donepezil, an acetlycholinesterase inhibitor developed for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, can stimulate oligodendrocyte differentiation and maturation of neural stem cell-derived oligodendrocyte progenitor cells without affecting proliferation or cell viability. Transcripts for essential myelin-associated genes, such as PLP, MAG, MBP, CNPase, and MOG, in addition to transcription factors that regulate oligodendrocyte differentiation and myelination, were rapidly increased after treatment with donepezil. Furthermore, luciferase assays confirmed that both MAG and MBP promoters display increased activity upon donepezil-induced oligodendrocytes differentiation, suggesting that donepezil increases myelin gene expression mainly through enhanced transcription. We also found that the increase in the number of oligodendrocytes observed following donepezil treatment was significantly inhibited by the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) antagonist mecamylamine, but not by the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist scopolamine. Moreover, donepezil-induced myelin-related gene expression was suppressed by mecamylamine at both the mRNA and protein level. These results suggest that donepezil stimulates oligodendrocyte differentiation and myelin-related gene expression via nAChRs in neural stem cell-derived oligodendrocyte progenitor cells. We show that donepezil, a drug for the treatment of Alzheimer disease, can stimulate oligodendrocyte differentiation and maturation of oligodendrocyte progenitor cells. Transcripts for essential myelin-associated genes, such as PLP, MAG, MBP, CNPase and MOG in addition to transcripton factors that regulate oligodendrocyte differentiation and myelination were rapidly increased after treatment with donepezil

  20. Diacylglycerol levels modulate the cellular distribution of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Kamerbeek, Constanza B; Mateos, Melina V; Vallés, Ana S; Pediconi, María F; Barrantes, Francisco J; Borroni, Virginia

    2016-05-01

    Diacylglycerol (DAG), a second messenger involved in different cell signaling cascades, activates protein kinase C (PKC) and D (PKD), among other kinases. The present work analyzes the effects resulting from the alteration of DAG levels on neuronal and muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) distribution. We employ CHO-K1/A5 cells, expressing adult muscle-type AChR in a stable manner, and hippocampal neurons, which endogenously express various subtypes of neuronal AChR. CHO-K1/A5 cells treated with dioctanoylglycerol (DOG) for different periods showed augmented AChR cell surface levels at short incubation times (30min-4h) whereas at longer times (18h) the AChR was shifted to intracellular compartments. Similarly, in cultured hippocampal neurons surface AChR levels increased as a result of DOG incubation for 4h. Inhibition of endogenous DAG catabolism produced changes in AChR distribution similar to those induced by DOG treatment. Specific enzyme inhibitors and Western blot assays revealed that DAGs exert their effect on AChR distribution through the modulation of the activity of classical PKC (cPKC), novel PKC (nPKC) and PKD activity. PMID:26898898

  1. cGMP/cGMP-dependent protein kinase pathway modulates nicotine-induced currents through the activation of α-bungarotoxin-insensitive nicotinic acetylcholine receptors from insect neurosecretory cells.

    PubMed

    Mannai, Safa; Bitri, Lofti; Thany, Steeve H

    2016-06-01

    Insect neurosecretory cells, called dorsal unpaired median neurons, are known to express two α-bungarotoxin-insensitive nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtypes, nAChR1 and nAChR2. It was demonstrated that nAChR1 was sensitive to cAMP/cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) regulation, resulting in a modulation of nicotine currents. In this study, we show that cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP)/cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG) pathway modulates nicotine-induced currents, as increased cGMP affects the second compound of the biphasic current-voltage curve, corresponding to the nAChR2 receptors. Indeed, maintaining the guanosine triphosphate level with 100 μM guanosine triphosphate-γ-S increased nicotine currents through nAChR2. We also demonstrated that inhibition of PKG activity with 0.2 μM (8R,9S,11S)-(-)-9-methoxy-carbamyl-8-methyl-2,3,9,10-tetrahydro-8,11-epoxy-1H,8H,11H-2,7b,11a-trizadibenzo-(a,g)-cycloocta-(c,d,e)-trinden-1-one (KT5823), a PKG specific inhibitor, reduced nicotine-induced current amplitudes. KT5823 effect on nicotine currents is associated with calcium (Ca(2+) ) activity because inhibition of Ca(2+) concentration with cadmium chloride (CdCl2 ) abolished KT5823-induced inhibition mediated by nAChR2. However, specific inhibition of nitric oxide-guanylyl cyclase (GC) complex by 10 μM 1H-[1,2,4]oxadiazolo[4,3-a]quinoxalin-1-one (ODQ) significantly increased nicotine-induced current amplitudes on both nAChR1 and nAChR2. These results suggest that nicotine-induced currents mediated by both α-bungarotoxin-insensitive nAChR1 and nAChR2 are coupled to the cGMP/PKG pathway. We propose that nicotinic acetylcholine receptor activation induces an increase in intracellular calcium (Ca(2+) ) concentration. Elevation of intracellular Ca(2+) results in the formation of Ca(2+) -calmodulin (CaM) complex, which activates guanylyl cyclase (GC) and/or adenylyl cyclase (AC). Ca(2+) -CaM complex could activate Ca(2+) calmodulin kinase II which

  2. The Nicotinic Receptor of Cochlear Hair Cells: A Possible Pharmacotherapeutic Target?

    PubMed Central

    Elgoyhen, Ana Belén; Katz, Eleonora; Fuchs, Paul A.

    2009-01-01

    Mechanosensory hair cells of the organ of Corti transmit information regarding sound to the central nervous system by way of peripheral afferent neurons. In return, the central nervous system provides feedback and modulates the afferent stream of information through efferent neurons. The medial olivocochlear efferent system makes direct synaptic contacts with outer hair cells and inhibits amplification brought about by the active mechanical process inherent to these cells. This feedback system offers the potential to improve the detection of signals in background noise, to selectively attend to particular signals, and to protect the periphery from damage caused by overly loud sounds. Acetylcholine released at the synapse between efferent terminals and outer hair cells activates a peculiar nicotinic cholinergic receptor subtype, the α9α10 receptor. At present no pharmacotherapeutic approaches have been designed that target this cholinergic receptor to treat pathologies of the auditory system. The potential use of α9α10 selective drugs in conditions such as noise-induced hearing loss, tinnitus and auditory processing disorders is discussed. PMID:19481062

  3. Menthol Binding and Inhibition of α7-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Ashoor, Abrar; Nordman, Jacob C.; Veltri, Daniel; Yang, Keun-Hang Susan; Al Kury, Lina; Shuba, Yaroslav; Mahgoub, Mohamed; Howarth, Frank C.; Sadek, Bassem; Shehu, Amarda; Kabbani, Nadine; Oz, Murat

    2013-01-01

    Menthol is a common compound in pharmaceutical and commercial products and a popular additive to cigarettes. The molecular targets of menthol remain poorly defined. In this study we show an effect of menthol on the α7 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptor function. Using a two-electrode voltage-clamp technique, menthol was found to reversibly inhibit α7-nACh receptors heterologously expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Inhibition by menthol was not dependent on the membrane potential and did not involve endogenous Ca2+-dependent Cl− channels, since menthol inhibition remained unchanged by intracellular injection of the Ca2+ chelator BAPTA and perfusion with Ca2+-free bathing solution containing Ba2+. Furthermore, increasing ACh concentrations did not reverse menthol inhibition and the specific binding of [125I] α-bungarotoxin was not attenuated by menthol. Studies of α7- nACh receptors endogenously expressed in neural cells demonstrate that menthol attenuates α7 mediated Ca2+ transients in the cell body and neurite. In conclusion, our results suggest that menthol inhibits α7-nACh receptors in a noncompetitive manner. PMID:23935840

  4. The selective dopamine D3 receptor antagonist SB-277011A reduces nicotine-enhanced brain reward and nicotine-paired environmental cue functions.

    PubMed

    Pak, Arlene C; Ashby, Charles R; Heidbreder, Christian A; Pilla, Maria; Gilbert, Jeremy; Xi, Zheng-Xiong; Gardner, Eliot L

    2006-10-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that enhanced dopamine (DA) neurotransmission in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) may play a role in mediating the reward and reinforcement produced by addictive drugs and in the attentional processing of drug-associated environmental cues. The meso-accumbens DA system is selectively enriched with DA D3 receptors, a DA receptor subtype increasingly implicated in reward-related brain and behavioural processes. From a variety of evidence, it has been suggested that selective DA D3 receptor antagonism may be a useful pharmacotherapeutic approach for treating addiction. The present experiments tested the efficacy of SB-277011A, a selective DA D3 receptor antagonist, in rat models of nicotine-enhanced electrical brain-stimulation reward (BSR), nicotine-induced conditioned locomotor activity (LMA), and nicotine-induced conditioned place preference (CPP). Nicotine was given subcutaneously within the dose range of 0.25-0.6 mg/kg (nicotine-free base). SB-277011A, given intraperitoneally within the dose range of 1-12 mg/kg, dose-dependently reduced nicotine-enhanced BSR, nicotine-induced conditioned LMA, and nicotine-induced CPP. The results suggest that selective D3 receptor antagonism constitutes a new and promising pharmacotherapeutic approach to the treatment of nicotine dependence. PMID:16942635

  5. Role of α4- and α6-containing nicotinic receptors in the acquisition and maintenance of nicotine self-administration.

    PubMed

    Madsen, Heather B; Koghar, Harcharan S; Pooters, Tine; Massalas, Jim S; Drago, John; Lawrence, Andrew J

    2015-05-01

    Tobacco smoking is a major cause of death and disease and as such there is a critical need for the development of new therapeutic approaches to treat nicotine addiction. Here, we utilize genetic and pharmacological tools to further investigate the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtypes that support intravenous self-administration of nicotine. α4-S248F mice contain a point mutation within the α4 nAChR subunit which confers increased sensitivity to nicotine and resistance to mecamylamine. Here, we show that acute administration of mecamylamine (2 mg/kg, i.p.) reduces established nicotine self-administration (0.05 mg/kg/infusion) in wild-type (WT), but not in α4-S248F heterozygous mice, demonstrating a role for α4* nAChRs in the modulation of ongoing nicotine self-administration. Administration of N,N-decane-1,10-diyl-bis-3-picolinium diiodide (bPiDI), a selective α6β2* nAChR antagonist, dose dependently (5 and 10 mg/kg, i.p.) impairs the acquisition of nicotine self-administration and reduces established nicotine self-administration in WT mice when administered acutely (10 mg/kg, i.p.). This was not due to a general reduction in locomotor activity and the same dose of bPiDI did not affect operant responding for sucrose. bPiDI treatment (10 mg/kg, i.p.) also impaired both the acquisition and maintenance of nicotine self-administration in α4-S248F heterozygous mice. This provides further evidence for the involvement of α6β2* nAChRs in the reinforcing effects of nicotine that underlies its ability to support ongoing self-administration. Taken together, selective targeting of α6β2* or α4α6β2* nAChRs may prove to be an effective strategy for the development of smoking cessation therapies. PMID:24750355

  6. Coantagonism of Glutamate Receptors and Nicotinic Acetylcholinergic Receptors Disrupts Fear Conditioning and Latent Inhibition of Fear Conditioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gould, Thomas J.; Lewis, Michael C.

    2005-01-01

    The present study investigated the hypothesis that both nicotinic acetylcholinergic receptors (nAChRs) and glutamate receptors ([alpha]-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionate receptors (AMPARs) and N-methyl-D-aspartate glutamate receptors (NMDARs)) are involved in fear conditioning, and may modulate similar processes. The effects of the…

  7. Activation of endplate nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by agonists.

    PubMed

    Auerbach, Anthony

    2015-10-15

    The interaction of a small molecule made in one cell with a large receptor made in another is the signature event of cell signaling. Understanding the structure and energy changes associated with agonist activation is important for engineering drugs, receptors and synapses. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) is a ∼300kD ion channel that binds the neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) and other cholinergic agonists to elicit electrical responses in the central and peripheral nervous systems. This mini-review is in two sections. First, general concepts of skeletal muscle AChR operation are discussed in terms of energy landscapes for conformational change. Second, adult vs. fetal AChRs are compared with regard to interaction energies between ACh and agonist-site side chains, measured by single-channel electrophysiology and molecular dynamics simulations. The five aromatic residues that form the core of each agonist binding site can be divided into two working groups, a triad (led by αY190) that behaves similarly at all sites and a coupled pair (led by γW55) that has a large influence on affinity only in fetal AChRs. Each endplate AChR has 5 homologous subunits, two of α(1) and one each of β, δ, and either γ (fetal) or ϵ (adult). These nicotinic AChRs have only 2 functional agonist binding sites located in the extracellular domain, at αδ and either αγ or αϵ subunit interfaces. The receptor undergoes a reversible, global isomerization between structures called C and O. The C shape does not conduct ions and has a relatively low affinity for ACh, whereas O conducts cations and has a higher affinity. When both agonist sites are empty (filled only with water) the probability of taking on the O conformation (PO) is low, <10(-6). When ACh molecules occupy the agonist sites the C→O opening rate constant and C↔O gating equilibrium constant increase dramatically. Following a pulse of ACh at the nerve-muscle synapse, the endplate current rises rapidly

  8. Nicotine impairs cyclooxygenase-2-dependent kinin-receptor-mediated murine airway relaxations

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, Yuan Cardell, Lars-Olaf

    2014-02-15

    Introduction: Cigarette smoke induces local inflammation and airway hyperreactivity. In asthmatics, it worsens the symptoms and increases the risk for exacerbation. The present study investigates the effects of nicotine on airway relaxations in isolated murine tracheal segments. Methods: Segments were cultured for 24 h in the presence of vehicle, nicotine (10 μM) and/or dexamethasone (1 μM). Airway relaxations were assessed in myographs after pre-contraction with carbachol (1 μM). Kinin receptors, cyclooxygenase (COX) and inflammatory mediator expressions were assessed by real-time PCR and confocal-microscopy-based immunohistochemistry. Results: The organ culture procedure markedly increased bradykinin- (selective B{sub 2} receptor agonist) and des-Arg{sup 9}-bradykinin- (selective B{sub 1} receptor agonist) induced relaxations, and slightly increased relaxation induced by isoprenaline, but not that induced by PGE{sub 2}. The kinin receptor mediated relaxations were epithelium-, COX-2- and EP2-receptor-dependent and accompanied by drastically enhanced mRNA levels of kinin receptors, as well as inflammatory mediators MCP-1 and iNOS. Increase in COX-2 and mPGES-1 was verified both at mRNA and protein levels. Nicotine selectively suppressed the organ-culture-enhanced relaxations induced by des-Arg{sup 9}-bradykinin and bradykinin, at the same time reducing mPGES-1 mRNA and protein expressions. α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor inhibitors α-bungarotoxin and MG624 both blocked the nicotine effects on kinin B{sub 2} receptors, but not those on B{sub 1}. Dexamethasone completely abolished kinin-induced relaxations. Conclusion: It is tempting to conclude that a local inflammatory process per se could have a bronchoprotective component by increasing COX-2 mediated airway relaxations and that nicotine could impede this safety mechanism. Dexamethasone further reduced airway inflammation together with relaxations. This might contribute to the steroid resistance seen in

  9. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: upregulation, age-related effects and associations with drug use

    PubMed Central

    Melroy-Greif, W. E.; Stitzel, J. A.; Ehringer, M. A.

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are ligand-gated ion channels that exogenously bind nicotine. Nicotine produces rewarding effects by interacting with these receptors in the brain’s reward system. Unlike other receptors, chronic stimulation by an agonist induces an upregulation of receptor number that is not due to increased gene expression in adults; while upregulation also occurs during development and adolescence there have been some opposing findings regarding a change in corresponding gene expression. These receptors have also been well studied with regard to human genetic associations and, based on evidence suggesting shared genetic liabilities between substance use disorders, numerous studies have pointed to a role for this system in comorbid drug use. This review will focus on upregulation of these receptors in adulthood, adolescence and development, as well as the findings from human genetic association studies which point to different roles for these receptors in risk for initiation and continuation of drug use. PMID:26351737

  10. Positive allosteric modulation of α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors as a new approach to smoking reduction: evidence from a rat model of nicotine self-administration

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xiu

    2013-01-01

    Rationale The α4β2 subtype of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) plays a central role in the mediation of nicotine reinforcement. Positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) at α4β2 nAChRs facilitate the intrinsic efficiency of these receptors although they do not directly activate the receptors. α4β2 PAMs are hypothesized to reduce nicotine self-administration in subjects engaged in routine nicotine consumption. The present study tested this hypothesis using a rat model of nicotine self-administration. Methods Male Sprague-Dawley rats were trained in daily 1 h sessions to intravenously self-administer nicotine (0.03 mg/kg/infusion, free base) on a fixed-ratio 5 schedule. Effects of the α4β2 PAM desformylflustrabromine (dFBr), α4β2 agonist 5-iodo-A-85380, and acetylcholinesterase inhibitor galantamine on nicotine intake were examined. The ability of dFBr and 5-iodo-A-85380 to substitute for nicotine was also assessed. Results dFBr and 5-iodo-A-85380 dose-dependently reduced nicotine self-administration without changing lever responses for food. Galantamine decreased self-administration of nicotine and food at high doses. Unlike 5-iodo-A-85380, dFBr failed to substitute for nicotine in supporting self-administration behavior. Conclusions These results demonstrated the effectiveness of dFBr in reducing nicotine intake and the inability of dFBr to support self-administration behavior. These findings suggest that positive allosteric modulation of α4β2 nAChRs may be a promising target for the treatment of nicotine addiction. Moreover, α4β2 PAMs, in contrast to agonist medications, may have clinical advantages because they may have little liability for abuse because of their lack of reinforcing actions on their own. PMID:23712602