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Sample records for acetylcholine receptor nachrs

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

    PubMed

    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.

  2. 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

  3. Modulation of recombinant, α2*, α3* or α4*-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) function by nAChR β3 subunits.

    PubMed

    Dash, Bhagirathi; Bhakta, Minoti; Chang, Yongchang; Lukas, Ronald J

    2012-05-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) β3 subunit is thought to serve an accessory role in nAChR subtypes expressed in dopaminergic regions implicated in drug dependence and reward. When β3 subunits are expressed in excess, they have a dominant-negative effect on function of selected nAChR subtypes. In this study, we show, in Xenopus oocytes expressing α2, α3 or α4 plus either β2 or β4 subunits, that in the presumed presence of similar amounts of each nAChR subunit, co-expression with wild-type β3 subunits generally (except for α3*-nAChR) lowers amplitudes of agonist-evoked, inward peak currents by 20-50% without having dramatic effects (≤ 2-fold) on agonist potencies. By contrast, co-expression with mutant β3(V9'S) subunits generally (except for α4β2*-nAChR) increases agonist potencies, consistent with an expected gain-of-function effect. This most dramatically demonstrates formation of complexes containing three kinds of subunit. Moreover, for oocytes expressing nAChR containing any α subunit plus β4 and β3(V9'S) subunits, there is spontaneous channel opening sensitive to blockade by the open channel blocker, atropine. Collectively, the results indicate that β3 subunits integrate into all of the studied receptor assemblies and suggest that natural co-expression with β3 subunits can influence levels of expression and agonist sensitivities of several nAChR subtypes.

  4. Reporter mutation studies show that nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) α5 Subunits and/or variants modulate function of α6*-nAChR.

    PubMed

    Dash, Bhagirathi; Chang, Yongchang; Lukas, Ronald J

    2011-11-04

    To further the understanding of functional α6α5*-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR; the asterisk (*) indicates known or possible presence of other subunits), we have heterologously expressed in oocytes different, mouse or human, nAChR subunit combinations. Coexpression with wild-type α5 subunits or chimeric α5/β3 subunits (in which the human α5 subunit N-terminal, extracellular domain is linked to the remaining domains of the human β3 subunit) almost completely abolishes the very small amount of function seen for α6β4*-nAChR and does not induce function of α6β2*-nAChR. Coexpression with human α5(V9)'(S) subunits bearing a valine 290 to serine mutation in the 9' position of the second transmembrane domain does not rescue the function of α6β4*-nAChR or induce function of α6β2*-nAChR. However, coexpression with mutant chimeric α5/β3(V9)'(S) subunits has a gain-of-function effect (higher functional expression and agonist sensitivity and spontaneous opening inhibited by mecamylamine) on α6β4*-nAChR. Moreover, N143D + M145V mutations in the α6 subunit N-terminal domain enable α5/β3(V9)'(S) subunits to have a gain-of-function effect on α6β2*-nAChR. nAChR containing chimeric α6/α3 subunits plus either β2 or β4 subunits have some function that is modulated in the presence of α5 or α5/β3 subunits. Coexpression with α5/β3(V9)'(S) subunits has a gain-of-function effect more pronounced than that in the presence of α5(V9)'(S) subunits. Gain-of-function effects are dependent, sometimes subtly, on the nature and apparently the extracellular, cytoplasmic, and/or transmembrane domain topology of partner subunits. These studies yield insight into assembly of functional α6α5*-nAChR and provide tools for development of α6*-nAChR-selective ligands that could be important in the treatment of nicotine dependence, and perhaps other neurological diseases.

  5. Nicotine-Induced Effects on Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors (nAChRs), Ca2+ and Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) in STC-1 Cells

    PubMed Central

    Qian, Jie; Mummalaneni, Shobha K.; Alkahtani, Reem M.; Mahavadi, Sunila; Murthy, Karnam S.; Grider, John R.

    2016-01-01

    In addition to the T2R bitter taste receptors, neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have recently been shown to be involved in the bitter taste transduction of nicotine, acetylcholine and ethanol. However, at present it is not clear if nAChRs are expressed in enteroendocrine cells other than beta cells of the pancreas and enterochromaffin cells, and if they play a role in the synthesis and release of neurohumoral peptides. Accordingly, we investigated the expression and functional role of nAChRs in enteroendocrine STC-1 cells. Our studies using RT-PCR, qRT-PCR, immunohistochemical and Western blotting techniques demonstrate that STC-1 cells express several α and β nAChR subunits. Exposing STC-1 cells to nicotine acutely (24h) or chronically (4 days) induced a differential increase in the expression of nAChR subunit mRNA and protein in a dose- and time-dependent fashion. Mecamylamine, a non-selective antagonist of nAChRs, inhibited the nicotine-induced increase in mRNA expression of nAChRs. Exposing STC-1 cells to nicotine increased intracellular Ca2+ in a dose-dependent manner that was inhibited in the presence of mecamylamine or dihydro-β-erythroidine, a α4β2 nAChR antagonist. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) mRNA and protein were detected in STC-1 cells using RT-PCR, specific BDNF antibody, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Acute nicotine exposure (30 min) decreased the cellular content of BDNF in STC-1 cells. The nicotine-induced decrease in BDNF was inhibited in the presence of mecamylamine. We also detected α3 and β4 mRNA in intestinal mucosal cells and α3 protein expression in intestinal enteroendocrine cells. We conclude that STC-1 cells and intestinal enteroendocrine cells express nAChRs. In STC-1 cells nAChR expression is modulated by exposure to nicotine in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Nicotine interacts with nAChRs and inhibits BDNF expression in STC-1 cells. PMID:27846263

  6. Identification of novel α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) agonists based on an isoxazole ether scaffold that demonstrate antidepressant-like activity.

    PubMed

    Yu, Li-Fang; Tückmantel, Werner; Eaton, J Brek; Caldarone, Barbara; Fedolak, Allison; Hanania, Taleen; Brunner, Dani; Lukas, Ronald J; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2012-01-26

    There is considerable evidence to support the hypothesis that the blockade of nAChR is responsible for the antidepressant action of nicotinic ligands. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) antagonist, mecamylamine, has been shown to be an effective add-on in patients that do not respond to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. This suggests that nAChR ligands may address an unmet clinical need by providing relief from depressive symptoms in refractory patients. In this study, a new series of nAChR ligands based on an isoxazole-ether scaffold have been designed and synthesized for binding and functional assays. Preliminary structure-activity relationship (SAR) efforts identified a lead compound 43, which possesses potent antidepressant-like activity (1 mg/kg, IP; 5 mg/kg, PO) in the classical mouse forced swim test. Early stage absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion, and toxicity (ADME-Tox) studies also suggested favorable drug-like properties, and broad screening toward other common neurotransmitter receptors indicated that compound 43 is highly selective for nAChRs over the other 45 neurotransmitter receptors and transporters tested.

  7. Cellular protein and mRNA expression of β1 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit in brain, skeletal muscle and placenta.

    PubMed

    Aishah, Atqiya; Hinton, Tina; Machaalani, Rita

    2017-01-30

    The β1 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit is a muscle type subunit of this family and as such, is found predominantly in muscle. Recent reports document its expression in other tissues and cell lines including adrenal glands, carcinomas, lung and brain. However, the majority of studies were of tissue lysates, thus the cellular distribution was not determined. This study aimed to determine the cellular distribution of the β1 nAChR subunit in the brain, at both the mRNA and protein levels, using non-radioactive in situ hybridization (ISH) and immunohistochemistry (IHC), respectively, and to compare it to two muscle tissue types, skeletal and placenta. Tissue was formalin fixed and paraffin embedded (all tissue types) and frozen (placenta) from humans. Additional control tissue from the piglet and mouse brain were also studied, as was mRNA for the α3 nAChR and N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor 1 (NR1) subunit. We found no β1 nAChR subunit mRNA expression in the human and piglet brain despite strong protein expression. Some signal was seen in the mouse brain but considered inconclusive given the probes designed were not of 100% homology to the mouse. In the skeletal muscle and placenta tissues, β1 nAChR subunit mRNA expression was prominent and mirrored protein expression. No α3 nAChR or NR1 mRNA was seen in the skeletal muscle, as expected, although both subunit mRNAs were present in the placenta. This study concludes that further experiments are required to conclusively state that the β1 nAChR subunit is expressed in the human, piglet and mouse brain.

  8. Two rare variations, D478N and D478E, that occur at the same amino acid residue in nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) α2 subunit influence nAChR function.

    PubMed

    Dash, Bhagirathi; Li, Ming D

    2014-10-01

    There occur two rare variations, Asp(D)478Asn(N) and Asp(D)478Glu(E), in the putative cytoplasmic amphipathic α-helices of human nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) α2 subunit as a result of mutation in the 1st (G → A: rs141072985) and 3rd (C → A: rs56344740) nucleotide of its 478th triplet codon (GAC). We assessed the effects of these two variations on the function of α2β2- and α2β4-nAChRs as they could alter the electronegativity and/or the structure of the cytoplasmic 'portals' (framed by subunit amphipathic α-helices) necessary for obligate ion permeation from extracellular space to cytoplasm. We injected decreasing ratio of subunit cRNAs (α:β; 10:1, 1:1 and 1:10) into Xenopus oocytes to express putative low-sensitivity (LS; 10:1), intermediate-sensitivity (IS; 1:1) and high sensitivity (HS; 1:10) isoforms of wild type and variant α2β2- and α2β4-nAChRs. Two-electrode voltage clamp analyses indicate that the agonist (ACh or nicotine) induced peak current responses (Imax) of α2β2-nAChR isoforms and those of α2β4-nAChR isoforms are increased (1.3-4.7-fold) as a result of D478E variation. The α2 subunit D478N variation only increases the Imax of IS (∼2-fold) or HS (1.4-2.1-fold) α2β2-nAChRs. Concentration-response curves constructed indicate no effect on agonist sensitivities of LS and HS isoforms of α2β2- or α2β4-nAChRs as a result of either variation in α2 subunit. Between the two variant nAChRs, α2(D478E)*-nAChR isoforms generally yield higher Imax than those of respective α2(D478N)*-nAChR isoforms. These effects could be attributed to alteration in cytoplasmic 'portals' and/or ion permeation through it owing to change in amino acid electronegativity (D → N) and side chain length (D → E) in nAChR α2 subunit.

  9. Investigation of Acetylcholine Receptor Diversity in a Nematode Parasite Leads to Characterization of Tribendimidine- and Derquantel-Sensitive nAChRs

    PubMed Central

    Neveu, Cedric; Cabaret, Jacques; Cortet, Jacques; Peineau, Nicolas; Abongwa, Melanie; Courtot, Elise; Robertson, Alan P.; Martin, Richard J.

    2014-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) of parasitic nematodes are required for body movement and are targets of important “classical” anthelmintics like levamisole and pyrantel, as well as “novel” anthelmintics like tribendimidine and derquantel. Four biophysical subtypes of nAChR have been observed electrophysiologically in body muscle of the nematode parasite Oesophagostomum dentatum, but their molecular basis was not understood. Additionally, loss of one of these subtypes (G 35 pS) was found to be associated with levamisole resistance. In the present study, we identified and expressed in Xenopus oocytes, four O. dentatum nAChR subunit genes, Ode-unc-38, Ode-unc-63, Ode-unc-29 and Ode-acr-8, to explore the origin of the receptor diversity. When different combinations of subunits were injected in Xenopus oocytes, we reconstituted and characterized four pharmacologically different types of nAChRs with different sensitivities to the cholinergic anthelmintics. Moreover, we demonstrate that the receptor diversity may be affected by the stoichiometric arrangement of the subunits. We show, for the first time, different combinations of subunits from a parasitic nematode that make up receptors sensitive to tribendimidine and derquantel. In addition, we report that the recombinant levamisole-sensitive receptor made up of Ode-UNC-29, Ode-UNC-63, Ode-UNC-38 and Ode-ACR-8 subunits has the same single-channel conductance, 35 pS and 2.4 ms mean open-time properties, as the levamisole-AChR (G35) subtype previously identified in vivo. These data highlight the flexible arrangements of the receptor subunits and their effects on sensitivity and resistance to the cholinergic anthelmintics; pyrantel, tribendimidine and/or derquantel may still be effective on levamisole-resistant worms. PMID:24497826

  10. Cigarette smoking during pregnancy regulates the expression of specific nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits in the human placenta

    SciTech Connect

    Machaalani, R.; Ghazavi, E.; Hinton, T.; Waters, K.A.; Hennessy, A.

    2014-05-01

    Smoking during pregnancy is associated with low birth weight, premature delivery, and neonatal morbidity and mortality. Nicotine, a major pathogenic compound of cigarette smoke, binds to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). A total of 16 nAChR subunits have been identified in mammals (9 α, 4 β, and 1 δ, γ and ε subunits). The effect of cigarette smoking on the expression of these subunits in the placenta has not yet been determined, thus constituting the aim of this study. Using RT-qPCR and western blotting, this study investigated all 16 mammalian nAChR subunits in the normal healthy human placenta, and compared mRNA and protein expressions in the placentas from smokers (n = 8) to controls (n = 8). Our data show that all 16 subunit mRNAs are expressed in the normal, non-diseased human placenta and that the expression of α2, α3, α4, α9, β2 and β4 subunits is greater than the other subunits. For mRNA, cigarette smoke exposure was associated with increased expression of the α9 subunit, and decreased expression of the δ subunit. At the protein level, expression of both α9 and δ was increased. Thus, cigarette smoking in pregnancy is sufficient to regulate nAChR subunits in the placenta, specifically α9 and δ subunits, and could contribute to the adverse effects of vasoconstriction and decreased re-epithelialisation (α9), and increased calcification and apoptosis (δ), seen in the placentas of smoking women. - Highlights: • All 16 mammalian nAChR subunits are expressed in the human placenta. • Cigarette smoking increases α9 mRNA and protein in the placenta. • Cigarette smoking decreases δ mRNA but increases δ protein in the placenta.

  11. 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…

  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. Synthesis and biological evaluation of novel hybrids of highly potent and selective α4β2-Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonists.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Han-Kun; Eaton, J Brek; Fedolak, Allison; Gunosewoyo, Hendra; Onajole, Oluseye K; Brunner, Dani; Lukas, Ronald J; Yu, Li-Fang; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2016-11-29

    We previously reported the cyclopropylpyridine and isoxazolylpyridine ether scaffolds to be versatile building blocks for creating potent α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonists with excellent selectivity over the α3β4 subtype. In our continued efforts to develop therapeutic nicotinic ligands, seven novel hybrid compounds were rationally designed, synthesized, and evaluated in [(3)H]epibatidine binding competition studies. Incorporation of a cyclopropane- or isoxazole-containing side chain onto the 5-position of 1-(pyridin-3-yl)-1,4-diazepane or 2-(pyridin-3-yl)-2,5-diazabicyclo[2.2.1]heptane led to highly potent and selective α4β2* nAChR partial agonists with Ki values of 0.5-51.4 nM for α4β2 and negligible affinities for α3β4 and α7. Moreover, compounds 21, 25, and 30 maintained the functional profiles (EC50 and IC50 values of 15-50 nM) of the parent azetidine-containing compounds 3 and 4 in the (86)Rb(+) ion flux assays. In vivo efficacy of the most promising compound 21 was confirmed in the mouse SmartCube(®) platform and classical forced swim tests, supporting the potential use of α4β2 partial agonists for treatment of depression.

  14. [18F]ASEM, a radiolabeled antagonist for imaging the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR) with positron emission tomography (PET)

    PubMed Central

    Horti, Andrew G.; Gao, Yongjun; Kuwabara, Hiroto; Wang, Yuchuan; Abazyan, Sofya; Yasuda, Robert P.; Tran, Thao; Xiao, Yingxian; Sahibzada, Niaz; Holt, Daniel P.; Kellar, Kenneth J.; Pletnikov, Mikhail V.; Pomper, Martin G.; Wong, Dean F.; Dannals, Robert F.

    2014-01-01

    The α7-nicotinic cholinergic receptor (α7-nAChR) is a key mediator of brain communication and has been implicated in a wide variety of central nervous system disorders. None of the currently available PET radioligands for α7-nAChR are suitable for quantitative PET imaging, mostly due to insufficient specific binding. The goal of this study was to evaluate the potential of [18F]ASEM ([18F]JHU82132) as an α7-nAChR radioligand for PET. Methods Inhibition binding assay and receptor functional properties of ASEM were assessed in vitro. The brain regional distribution of [18F]ASEM in baseline and blockade were evaluated in DISC1 mice (dissection) and baboons (PET). Results ASEM is an antagonist for the α7-nAChR with high binding affinity (Ki = 0.3 nM). [18F]ASEM readily entered the baboon brain and specifically labeled α7-nAChR. The in vivo specific binding of [18F]ASEM in the brain regions enriched with α7-nAChRs was 80–90%. SSR180711, an α7-nAChR selective partial agonist, blocked [18F]ASEM binding in the baboon brain in a dose-dependent manner, suggesting that the binding of [18F]ASEM was mediated by α7-nAChRs and the radioligand was suitable for drug evaluation studies. In the baboon baseline studies, the brain regional volume of distribution (VT) values for [18F]ASEM were 23 (thalamus), 22 (insula), 18 (hippocampus) and 14 (cerebellum), whereas in the binding selectivity (blockade) scan, all regional VT values were reduced to less than 4. The range of regional binding potential (BPND) values in the baboon brain was from 3.9 to 6.6. In vivo cerebral binding of [18F]ASEM and α7-nAChR expression in mutant DISC1 mice, a rodent model of schizophrenia, was significantly lower than in control animals, which is in agreement with previous post-mortem human data. Conclusion [18F]ASEM holds promise as a radiotracer with suitable imaging properties for quantification of α7-nAChR in the human brain. PMID:24556591

  15. Nicotine and 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone induce cyclooxygenase-2 activity in human gastric cancer cells: Involvement of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) and {beta}-adrenergic receptor signaling pathways

    SciTech Connect

    Shin, Vivian Yvonne; Jin, H.C.; Ng, Enders K.O.; Yu Jun; Leung, W.K.; Cho, C.H.; Sung, J.J.Y.

    2008-12-01

    Induction of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) associates with cigarette smoke exposure in many malignancies. Nicotine and its derivative, 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone (NNK), are the two important components in cigarette smoke that contributes to cancer development. However, the molecular mechanism(s) by which nicotine or NNK promotes gastric carcinogenesis remains largely unknown. We found that nicotine and NNK significantly enhanced cell proliferation in AGS cells that expressed both alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor ({alpha}7 nAChR) and {beta}-adrenergic receptors. Treatment of cells with {alpha}-bungarotoxin ({alpha}-BTX, {alpha}7nAChR antagonist) or propranolol ({beta}-adrenergic receptor antagonist) blocked NNK-induced COX-2/PGE{sub 2} and cell proliferation, while nicotine-mediated cell growth and COX-2/PGE{sub 2} induction can only be suppressed by propranolol, but not {alpha}-BTX. Moreover, in contrast to the dependence of growth promoting effect of nicotine on Erk activation, inhibitor of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) repressed NNK-induced COX-2 upregulation and resulted in suppression of cell growth. In addition, nicotine and NNK mediated COX-2 induction via different receptors to modulate several G1/S transition regulatory proteins and promote gastric cancer cell growth. Selective COX-2 inhibitor (SC-236) caused G1 arrest and abrogated nicotine/NNK-induced cell proliferation. Aberrant expression of cyclin D1 and other G1 regulatory proteins are reversed by blockade of COX-2. These results pointed to the importance of adrenergic and nicotinic receptors in gastric tumor growth through MAPK/COX-2 activation, which may perhaps provide a chemoprevention strategy for cigarette smoke-related gastric carcinogenesis.

  16. Roles for N-terminal extracellular domains of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) β3 subunits in enhanced functional expression of mouse α6β2β3- and α6β4β3-nAChRs.

    PubMed

    Dash, Bhagirathi; Li, Ming D; Lukas, Ronald J

    2014-10-10

    Functional heterologous expression of naturally expressed mouse α6*-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (mα6*-nAChRs; where "*" indicates the presence of additional subunits) has been difficult. Here we expressed and characterized wild-type (WT), gain-of-function, chimeric, or gain-of-function chimeric nAChR subunits, sometimes as hybrid nAChRs containing both human (h) and mouse (m) subunits, in Xenopus oocytes. Hybrid mα6mβ4hβ3- (∼ 5-8-fold) or WT mα6mβ4mβ3-nAChRs (∼ 2-fold) yielded higher function than mα6mβ4-nAChRs. Function was not detected when mα6 and mβ2 subunits were expressed together or in the additional presence of hβ3 or mβ3 subunits. However, function emerged upon expression of mα6mβ2mβ3(V9'S)-nAChRs containing β3 subunits having gain-of-function V9'S (valine to serine at the 9'-position) mutations in transmembrane domain II and was further elevated 9-fold when hβ3(V9'S) subunits were substituted for mβ3(V9'S) subunits. Studies involving WT or gain-of-function chimeric mouse/human β3 subunits narrowed the search for domains that influence functional expression of mα6*-nAChRs. Using hβ3 subunits as templates for site-directed mutagenesis studies, substitution with mβ3 subunit residues in extracellular N-terminal domain loops "C" (Glu(221) and Phe(223)), "E" (Ser(144) and Ser(148)), and "β2-β3" (Gln(94) and Glu(101)) increased function of mα6mβ2*- (∼ 2-3-fold) or mα6mβ4* (∼ 2-4-fold)-nAChRs. EC50 values for nicotine acting at mα6mβ4*-nAChR were unaffected by β3 subunit residue substitutions in loop C or E. Thus, amino acid residues located in primary (loop C) or complementary (loops β2-β3 and E) interfaces of β3 subunits are some of the molecular impediments for functional expression of mα6mβ2β3- or mα6mβ4β3-nAChRs.

  17. Synthesis and biological activity of a novel class nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) ligands structurally related to anatoxin-a.

    PubMed

    Simoni, Daniele; Rondanin, Riccardo; Marchetti, Paolo; Rullo, Cinzia; Baruchello, Riccardo; Grisolia, Giuseppina; Barbato, Giuseppina; Giovannini, Riccardo; Marchioro, Carla; Capelli, Anna Maria; Virginio, Caterina; Bozzoli, Andrea; Borea, Pier Andrea; Merighi, Stefania; Donati, Daniele

    2011-09-15

    The introduction of the isoxazole ring as bioisosteric replacement of the acetyl group of anatoxin-a led to a new series of derivatives binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Bulkier substitutions than methyl at the 3 position of isoxazole were shown to be detrimental for the activity. The binding potency of the most interesting compounds with α1, α7 and α3β4 receptor subtypes, was, anyway, only at micromolar level. Moreover, differently from known derivatives with pyridine, isoxazole condensed to azabicyclo ring led to no activity.

  18. Pharmacological properties and predicted binding mode of arylmethylene quinuclidine-like derivatives at the α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR).

    PubMed

    Kombo, David C; Hauser, Terry A; Grinevich, Vladimir P; Melvin, Matthew S; Strachan, Jon-Paul; Sidach, Serguei S; Chewning, Joseph; Fedorov, Nikolai; Tallapragada, Kartik; Breining, Scott R; Miller, Craig H

    2013-03-01

    We have carried out a pharmacological evaluation of arylmethylene quinuclidine derivatives interactions with human α3β4 nAChRs subtype, using cell-based receptor binding, calcium-influx, electrophysiological patch-clamp assays and molecular modeling techniques. We have found that the compounds bind competitively to the α3β4 receptor with micromolar affinities and some of the compounds behave as non-competitive antagonists (compounds 1, 2 and 3), displaying submicromolar IC(50) values. These evidences suggest a mixed mode of action for these compounds, having interactions at the orthosteric site and more pronounced interactions at an allosteric site to block agonist effects. One of the compounds, 1-benzyl-3-(diphenylmethylene)-1-azoniabicyclo[2.2.2]octane chloride (compound 3), exhibited poorly reversible use-dependent block of α3β4 channels. We also found that removal of a phenyl group from compound 1 confers a partial agonism to the derived analog (compound 6). Introducing a hydrogen-bond acceptor into the 3-benzylidene quinuclidine derivative (compound 7) increases agonism potency at the α3β4 receptor subtype. Docking into the orthosteric binding site of a α3β4 protein structure derived by comparative modeling accurately predicted the experimentally-observed trend in binding affinity. Results supported the notion that binding requires a hydrogen bond formation between the ligand basic nitrogen and the backbone carbonyl oxygen atom of the conserved Trp-149.

  19. Role of mouse cerebellar nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) α(4)β(2)- and α(7) subtypes in the behavioral cross-tolerance between nicotine and ethanol-induced ataxia.

    PubMed

    Taslim, Najla; Soderstrom, Ken; Dar, M Saeed

    2011-03-01

    We have demonstrated that nicotine attenuated ethanol-induced ataxia via nicotinic-acetylcholine-receptor (nAChR) subtypes α(4)β(2) and α(7). In the present study, ethanol (2g/kg; i.p.)-induced ataxia was assessed by Rotorod performance following repeated intracerebellar infusion of α(4)β(2)- and α(7)-selective agonists. Localization of α(4)β(2) and α(7) nAChRs was confirmed immunohistochemically. Cerebellar NO(x) (nitrite+nitrate) was determined flurometrically. Repeated intracerebellar microinfusion of the α(4)β(2)-selective agonist, RJR-2403 (for 1, 2, 3, 5 or 7 days) or the α(7)-selective agonist, PNU-282987 (1, 2, 3 or 5 days), dose-dependently attenuated ethanol-induced ataxia. These results suggest the development of cross-tolerance between ethanol-induced ataxia and α(4)β(2) and α(7) nAChR agonists. With RJR-2403, the cross-tolerance was maximal after a 5-day treatment and lasted 48h. Cross-tolerance was maximal after a 1-day treatment with PNU-282987 and lasted 72h. Pretreatment with α(4)β(2)- and α(7)-selective antagonists, dihydro-β-erythroidine and methyllycaconitine, respectively, prevented the development of cross-tolerance confirming α(4)β(2) and α(7) involvement. Repeated agonist infusions elevated cerebellar NO(x) 16h after the last treatment while acute ethanol exposure decreased it. Pretreatment with repeated RJR-2403 or PNU-282987 reversed ethanol-induced decrease in NOx. The NO(x) data suggests the involvement of the nitric oxide (NO)-cGMP signaling pathway in the cross-tolerance that develops between α(4)β(2)- and α(7)-selective agonists and ethanol ataxia. Both α(4)β(2) and α(7) subtypes exhibited high immunoreactivity in Purkinje but sparse expression in molecular and granular cell layers. Our results support a role for α(4)β(2) and α(7) nAChR subtypes in the development of cross-tolerance between nicotine and ethanol with the NO signaling pathway as a potential mechanism.

  20. Alcohol's actions on neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Davis, Tiffany J; de Fiebre, Christopher M

    2006-01-01

    Although it has been known for many years that alcoholism and tobacco addiction often co-occur, relatively little information is available on the biological factors that regulate the co-use and abuse of nicotine and alcohol. In the brain, nicotine acts at several different types of receptors collectively known as nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Alcohol also acts on at least some of these receptors, enhancing the function of some nAChR subtypes and inhibiting the activity of others. Chronic alcohol and nicotine administration also lead to changes in the numbers of nAChRs. Natural variations (i.e., polymorphisms) in the genes encoding different nAChR subunits may be associated with individual differences in the sensitivity to some of alcohol's and nicotine's effects. Finally, at least one subtype of nAChR may help protect cells against alcohol-induced neurotoxicity.

  1. Discovery of Highly Potent and Selective α4β2-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor (nAChR) Partial Agonists Containing an Isoxazolylpyridine Ether Scaffold that Demonstrate Antidepressant-like Activity. Part II

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Li-Fang; Eaton, J. Brek; Fedolak, Allison; Zhang, Han-Kun; Hanania, Taleen; Brunner, Dani; Lukas, Ronald J.; Kozikowski, Alan P.

    2012-01-01

    In our continued efforts to develop α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonists as novel antidepressants having a unique mechanism of action, structure activity relationship (SAR) exploration of certain isoxazolylpyridine ethers is presented. In particular, modifications to both the azetidine ring present in the starting structure 4 and its metabolically liable hydroxyl side chain substituent have been explored to improve compound druggability. The pharmacological characterization of all new compounds has been carried out using [3H]epibatidine binding studies together with functional assays based on 86Rb+ ion flux measurements. We found that the deletion of the metabolically liable hydroxyl group or its replacement by a fluoromethyl group not only maintained potency and selectivity, but also resulted in compounds showing antidepressant-like properties in the mouse forced swim test. These isoxazolylpyridine ethers appear to represent promising lead candidates in the design of innovative chemical tools containing reporter groups for imaging purposes and of possible therapeutics. PMID:23092294

  2. Discovery of highly potent and selective α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonists containing an isoxazolylpyridine ether scaffold that demonstrate antidepressant-like activity. Part II.

    PubMed

    Yu, Li-Fang; Eaton, J Brek; Fedolak, Allison; Zhang, Han-Kun; Hanania, Taleen; Brunner, Dani; Lukas, Ronald J; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2012-11-26

    In our continued efforts to develop α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonists as novel antidepressants having a unique mechanism of action, structure-activity relationship (SAR) exploration of certain isoxazolylpyridine ethers is presented. In particular, modifications to both the azetidine ring present in the starting structure 4 and its metabolically liable hydroxyl side chain substituent have been explored to improve compound druggability. The pharmacological characterization of all new compounds has been carried out using [(3)H]epibatidine binding studies together with functional assays based on (86)Rb(+) ion flux measurements. We found that the deletion of the metabolically liable hydroxyl group or its replacement by a fluoromethyl group not only maintained potency and selectivity but also resulted in compounds showing antidepressant-like properties in the mouse forced swim test. These isoxazolylpyridine ethers appear to represent promising lead candidates in the design of innovative chemical tools containing reporter groups for imaging purposes and of possible therapeutics.

  3. Impulsive behavior and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Ohmura, Yu; Tsutsui-Kimura, Iku; Yoshioka, Mitsuhiro

    2012-01-01

    Higher impulsivity is thought to be a risk factor for drug addiction, criminal involvement, and suicide. Excessive levels of impulsivity are often observed in several psychiatric disorders including attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and schizophrenia. Previous studies have demonstrated that nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are involved in impulsive behavior. Here, we introduce recent advances in this field and describe the role of the following nAChR-related brain mechanisms in modulating impulsive behavior: dopamine release in the ventral striatum; α4β2 nAChRs in the infralimbic cortex, which is a ventral part of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC); and dopamine release in the mPFC. We also suggest several potential therapeutic drugs to address these mechanisms in impulsivity-related disorders and explore future directions to further elucidate the roles of central nAChRs in impulsive behavior.

  4. Acetylcholine receptors in the retinas of the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor knockout mouse

    PubMed Central

    Souza, Fred G. Oliveira; Bruce, Kady S.; Strang, Christianne E.; Morley, Barbara J.; Keyser, Kent T.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose The α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) is widely expressed in the nervous system, including in the inner retinal neurons in all species studied to date. Although reductions in the expression of α7 nAChRs are thought to contribute to the memory and visual deficits reported in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and schizophrenia , the α7 nAChR knockout (KO) mouse is viable and has only slight visual dysfunction. The absence of a major phenotypic abnormality may be attributable to developmental mechanisms that serve to compensate for α7 nAChR loss. We hypothesized that the upregulation of genes encoding other nAChR subunits or muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) subtypes during development partially accounts for the absence of major deficiencies in the α7 nAChR KO mouse. The purpose of this study was to determine whether the deletion of the α7 nAChR subunit in a mouse model resulted in changes in the regulation of other cholinergic receptors or other ion channels in an α7 nAChR KO mouse when compared to a wild-type (WT) mouse. Methods To examine gene expression changes, we employed a quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) using whole retina RNA extracts as well as RNA extracted from selected regions of the retina. These extracts were collected using laser capture microdissection (LCM). The presence of acetylcholine receptor (AChR) subunit and subtype proteins was determined via western blotting. To determine any differences in the number and distribution of choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) amacrine cells, we employed wholemount and vertical immunohistochemistry (IHC) and cell counting. Additionally, in both WT and α7 nAChR KO mouse retinas, the distribution of the nAChR subunit and mAChR subtype proteins were determined via IHC for those KO mice that experienced mRNA changes. Results In the whole retina, there was a statistically significant upregulation of α2, α9, α10, β4, nAChR subunit, and m1 and m4 mAChR subtype

  5. Naturally occurring and synthetic peptides acting on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Kasheverov, Igor E; Utkin, Yuri N; Tsetlin, Victor I

    2009-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are pentameric membrane-bound proteins belonging to the large family of ligand-gated ion channels. nAChRs possess various binding sites which interact with compounds of different chemical nature, including peptides. Historically first peptides found to act on nAChR were synthetic fragments of snake alpha-neurotoxins, competitive receptor antagonists. Later it was shown that fragments of glycoprotein from rabies virus, having homology to alpha-neurotoxins, and polypeptide neurotoxins waglerins from the venom of Wagler's pit viper Trimeresurus (Tropidolaemus) wagleri bind in a similar way, waglerins being efficient blockers of muscle-type nAChRs. Neuropeptide substance P appears to interact with the channel moiety of nAChR. beta-Amyloid, a peptide forming senile plaques in Alzheimer's disease, also can bind to nAChR, although the mode of binding is still unclear. However, the most well-studied peptides interacting with the ligand-binding sites of nAChRs are so-called alpha-conotoxins, peptide neurotoxins from marine snails of Conus genus. First alpha-conotoxins were discovered in the late 1970s, and now it is a rapidly growing family due to isolation of peptides from multiple Conus species, as well as to cloning, and chemical synthesis of new analogues. Because of their unique selectivity towards distinct nAChR subtypes, alpha-conotoxins became valuable tools in nAChR research. Recent X-ray structures of alpha-conotoxin complexes with acetylcholine-binding protein, a model of nAChR ligand-binding domains, revealed the details of the nAChR ligand-binding sites and provided the basis for design of novel ligands.

  6. 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

  7. Diversity of insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits.

    PubMed

    Jones, Andrew K; Sattelle, David B

    2010-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are ligand-gated ion channels that mediate fast synaptic transmission in the insect nervous system and are targets of a major group of insecticides, the neonicotinoids. They consist of five subunits arranged around a central ion channeL Since the subunit composition determines the functional and pharmacological properties of the receptor the presence of nAChR families comprising several subunit-encodinggenes provides a molecular basis for broad functional diversity. Analyses of genome sequences have shown that nAChR gene families remain compact in diverse insect species, when compared to their nematode andvertebrate counterparts. Thus, the fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster), malaria mosquito (Anopheles gambiae), honey bee (Apis mellifera), silk worm (Bombyx mon) and the red flour beetle (Tribolium castaneum) possess 10-12 nAChR genes while human and the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans have 16 and 29 respectively. Although insect nAChRgene families are amongst the smallest known, receptor diversity can be considerably increased by the posttranscriptional processes alternative splicing and mRNA A-to-I editingwhich can potentially generate protein products which far outnumber the nAChR genes. These two processes can also generate species-specific subunit isoforms. In addition, each insect possesses at least one highly divergent nAChR subunit which may perform species-specific functions. Species-specific subunit diversification may offer promising targets for future rational design of insecticides that target specific pest insects while sparing beneficial species.

  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. 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

  10. Acetylcholine Promotes Binding of α-Conotoxin MII for α3β2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Sambasivarao, Somisetti V.; Roberts, Jessica; Bharadwaj, Vivek S.; Slingsby, Jason G.; Rohleder, Conrad; Mallory, Chris; Groome, James R.

    2014-01-01

    α-Conotoxin MII (α-CTxMII) is a 16 amino acid peptide with the sequence GCCSNPVCHLEHSNLC containing disulfide bonds between Cys2-Cys8 and Cys3-Cys16. This peptide, isolated from the venom of the marine cone snail Conus magus, is a potent and selective antagonist of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). To evaluate the impact of channel-ligand interactions on ligand binding affinity, homology models of the heteropentameric α3β2-nAChR were constructed. The models were created in MODELLER using crystal structures of the Torpedo marmorata-nAChR (Tm-nAChR, PDB ID: 2BG9) and the Aplysia californica-acetylcholine binding protein (Ac-AChBP, PDB ID: 2BR8) as templates for the α3 and β2 subunit isoforms derived from rat neuronal nAChR primary amino acid sequences. Molecular docking calculations were performed with AutoDock to evaluate interactions of the heteropentameric nAChR homology models with the ligands acetylcholine (ACh) and α-CTxMII. The nAChR homology models described here bind ACh with commensurate binding energies to previously reported systems, and identify critical interactions that facilitate both ACh and α-CTxMII ligand binding. The docking calculations revealed an increased binding affinity of the α3β2-nAChR for α-CTxMII with ACh bound to the receptor, which was confirmed through two-electrode voltage clamp experiments on oocytes from Xenopus laevis. These findings provide insights into the inhibition and mechanism of electrostatically driven antagonist properties of the α-CTxMIIs on nAChRs. PMID:24420650

  11. Effect of a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists and antagonists on motor function in mice

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) are ligand-gated cation channels found throughout the body, and serve to mediate diverse physiological functions. Muscle-type nAChR located in the motor endplate region of muscle fibers play an integral role in muscle contraction and thus motor function. The...

  12. Acetylcholine Receptor Organization in Membrane Domains in Muscle Cells

    PubMed Central

    Piguet, Joachim; Schreiter, Christoph; Segura, Jean-Manuel; Vogel, Horst; Hovius, Ruud

    2011-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) in muscle fibers are densely packed in the postsynaptic region at the neuromuscular junction. Rapsyn plays a central role in directing and clustering nAChR during cellular differentiation and neuromuscular junction formation; however, it has not been demonstrated whether rapsyn is the only cause of receptor immobilization. Here, we used single-molecule tracking methods to investigate nAChR mobility in plasma membranes of myoblast cells during their differentiation to myotubes in the presence and absence of rapsyn. We found that in myoblasts the majority of nAChR were immobile and that ∼20% of the receptors showed restricted diffusion in small domains of ∼50 nm. In myoblasts devoid of rapsyn, the fraction of mobile nAChR was considerably increased, accompanied by a 3-fold decrease in the immobile population of nAChR with respect to rapsyn-expressing cells. Half of the mobile receptors were confined to domains of ∼120 nm. Measurements performed in heterologously transfected HEK cells confirmed the direct immobilization of nAChR by rapsyn. However, irrespective of the presence of rapsyn, about one-third of nAChR were confined in 300-nm domains. Our results show (i) that rapsyn efficiently immobilizes nAChR independently of other postsynaptic scaffold components; (ii) nAChR is constrained in confined membrane domains independently of rapsyn; and (iii) in the presence of rapsyn, the size of these domains is strongly reduced. PMID:20978122

  13. α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: a therapeutic target in the structure era.

    PubMed

    Taly, Antoine; Charon, Sebastien

    2012-05-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) are ligand-gated ion channels involved in cognitive processes and are associated with brain disorders which makes them interesting drug targets. This article presents a general overview of the receptor to introduce the α7 nAChR as a drug target. The advances in understanding of the structure/function properties of the nAChR produced during the last decade are detailed as they are crucial for rational drug design. The allosteric properties of the nAChR will also be described because they also have important consequences for drug design.

  14. Alternative splicing in nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits from Locusta migratoria and its influence on acetylcholine potencies.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yixi; Liu, Yang; Bao, Haibo; Sun, Huahua; Liu, Zewen

    2017-01-18

    Due to the great abundance within insect central nervous system (CNS), nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) play key roles in insect CNS, which makes it to be the targets of several classes of insecticides, such as neonicotinoids. Insect nAChRs are pentameric complexes consisting of five subunits, and a dozen subunits in one insect species can theoretically comprise diverse nAChRs. The alternative splicing in insect nAChR subunits may increase the diversity of insect nAChRs. In the oriental migratory locust (Locusta migratoria manilensis Meyen), a model insect species with agricultural importance, the alternative splicing was found in six α subunits among nine α and two β subunits, such as missing conserved residues in Loop D from Locα1, Locα6 and Locα9, a 34-residue insertion in Locα8 cytoplasmic loop, and truncated transcripts for Locα4, Locα7 and Locα9. Hybrid nAChRs were successfully constructed in Xenopus oocytes through co-expression with rat β2 and one α subunit from L. migratoria, which included Locα1, Locα2, Locα3, Locα4, Locα5, Locα8 and Locα9. Influences of alternative splicing in Locα1, Locα8 and Locα9 on acetylcholine potency were tested on hybrid nAChRs. The alternative splicing in Locα1 and Locα9 could increase acetylcholine sensitivities on recombinant receptors, while the splicing in Locα8 showed significant influences on the current amplitudes of oocytes. The results revealed that the alternative splicing at or close to the ligand-binding sites, as well as at cytoplasmic regions away from the ligand-binding sites, in insect nAChR subunits would change the agonist potencies on the receptors, which consequently increased nAChR diversity in functional and pharmacological properties.

  15. The role of the a7 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor on motor coordination in mice treated with methyllcaconitine and anabasine

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The adverse effects of methyllycaconitine (MLA) have been attributed to competitive antagonism of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). Research has indicated a correlation between the LD50 of MLA and the amount of a7 nAChR in various mouse strains, suggesting that mice with more a7 nAChR requi...

  16. [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.

  17. Neural Systems Governed by Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: Emerging Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Miwa, Julie M.; Freedman, Robert; Lester, Henry A.

    2015-01-01

    Cholinergic neurons and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the brain participate in diverse functions: reward, learning and memory, mood, sensory processing, pain, and neuroprotection. Nicotinic systems also have well-known roles in drug abuse. Here, we review recent insights into nicotinic function, linking exogenous and endogenous manipulations of nAChRs to alterations in synapses, circuits, and behavior. We also discuss how these contemporary advances can motivate attempts to exploit nicotinic systems therapeutically in Parkinson’s disease, cognitive decline, epilepsy, and schizophrenia. PMID:21482353

  18. The physiology of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and its importance in the administration of anesthesia.

    PubMed

    Rossman, Amanda C

    2011-10-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) can be found widely throughout the body. Although the activation of this receptor leads to multiple functions dependent on its location within the body and subunit composition, all nAChRs aid in the communication between the extracellular and intracellular compartments. The nAChR is composed of 3 domains: the extracellular, transmembrane, and intracellular. The receptor functions in response to ligands that act as an agonist or antagonist that binds to the extracellular domain causing activation or inactivation of the receptor. The activation of the nAChR causes a twisting motion of the receptor, which opens a gate allowing for the passage of sodium, potassium, and calcium cations through the cell membrane. The muscle-type nAChR and neuronal-type nAChR have important roles during the administration of anesthesia. The muscle-type nAChR, located in the neuromuscular junction, is the target of neuromuscular blockers and local anesthetics to prevent muscle contraction. General anesthetics affect the neuronal-type nAChR by inhibiting functions of the central nervous system, including memory formation. The importance of the nAChR cannot be underestimated, for it is through the manipulation of this receptor that many anesthetic goals are achieved.

  19. Oseltamivir blocks human neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated currents.

    PubMed

    Muraki, Katsuhiko; Hatano, Noriyuki; Suzuki, Hiroka; Muraki, Yukiko; Iwajima, Yui; Maeda, Yasuhiro; Ono, Hideki

    2015-02-01

    The effects of oseltamivir, a neuraminidase inhibitor, were tested on the function of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in a neuroblastoma cell line IMR32 derived from human peripheral neurons and on recombinant human α3β4 nAChRs expressed in HEK cells. IMR32 cells predominately express α3β4 nAChRs. Nicotine (nic, 30 μm)-evoked currents recorded at -90 mV in IMR32 cells using the whole-cell patch clamp technique were reversibly blocked by oseltamivir in a concentration-dependent manner. In contrast, an active metabolite of oseltamivir, oseltamivir carboxylate (OC) at 30 μm had little effect on the nic-evoked currents. Oseltamivir also blocked nic-evoked currents derived from HEK cells with recombinant α3β4 nAChRs. This blockade was voltage-dependent with 10, 30 and 100 μm oseltamivir inhibiting ~50% at -100, -60 and -40 mV, respectively. Non-inactivating currents in IMR32 cells and in HEK cells with α3β4 nAChRs, which were evoked by an endogenous nicotinic agonist, ACh (5 μm), were reversibly blocked by oseltamivir. These data demonstrate that oseltamivir blocks nAChRs, presumably via binding to a site in the channel pore.

  20. The role of the a7 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in the acute toxicosis of methyllycaconitine in mice.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The adverse physiological effects of methyllycaconitine (MLA) have been attributed to its competitive antagonism of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Recent research demonstrated a correlation between the LD50 of MLA and the amount of a7 nAChR in various mouse strains, suggesting that mice...

  1. An ER-resident membrane protein complex regulates nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit composition at the synapse

    PubMed Central

    Almedom, Ruta B; Liewald, Jana F; Hernando, Guillermina; Schultheis, Christian; Rayes, Diego; Pan, Jie; Schedletzky, Thorsten; Hutter, Harald; Bouzat, Cecilia; Gottschalk, Alexander

    2009-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are homo- or heteropentameric ligand-gated ion channels mediating excitatory neurotransmission and muscle activation. Regulation of nAChR subunit assembly and transfer of correctly assembled pentamers to the cell surface is only partially understood. Here, we characterize an ER transmembrane (TM) protein complex that influences nAChR cell-surface expression and functional properties in Caenorhabditis elegans muscle. Loss of either type I TM protein, NRA-2 or NRA-4 (nicotinic receptor associated), affects two different types of muscle nAChRs and causes in vivo resistance to cholinergic agonists. Sensitivity to subtype-specific agonists of these nAChRs is altered differently, as demonstrated by whole-cell voltage-clamp of dissected adult muscle, when applying exogenous agonists or after photo-evoked, channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) mediated acetylcholine (ACh) release, as well as in single-channel recordings in cultured embryonic muscle. These data suggest that nAChRs desensitize faster in nra-2 mutants. Cell-surface expression of different subunits of the ‘levamisole-sensitive' nAChR (L-AChR) is differentially affected in the absence of NRA-2 or NRA-4, suggesting that they control nAChR subunit composition or allow only certain receptor assemblies to leave the ER. PMID:19609303

  2. Role of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor on Efferent Inhibition in Cochlear Hair Cell

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    The α9α10 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) mediates efferent inhibition of hair cell function within the auditory sensory organ. Gating of the nAChRs leads to activation of calcium-dependent potassium channels to hyperpolarize the hair cell. In efferent system, main calcium providers to SK channel are nAChR and synaptic cistern, which contribution to efferent inhibition is different between avian and mammalian species. Calcium permeation is more effective in nAChRs of mammalian cochlea than avian cochlea, and mammalian calcium permeability of nAChRs is about 3 times more than avian hair cell. Thus, mammalian nAChRs is a main component of efferent inhibition in cochlear hair cell system. PMID:24653883

  3. Selective actions of Lynx proteins on different nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the locust, Locusta migratoria manilensis.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xin; Bao, Haibo; Sun, Huahua; Zhang, Yixi; Fang, Jichao; Liu, Qinghong; Liu, Zewen

    2015-08-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are major neurotransmitter receptors and targets of neonicotinoid insecticides in the insect nervous system. The full function of nAChRs is often dependent on associated proteins, such as chaperones, regulators and modulators. Here, three Lynx (Ly-6/neurotoxin) proteins, Loc-lynx1, Loc-lynx2 and Loc-lynx3, were identified in the locust, Locusta migratoria manilensis. Co-expression with Lynx resulted in a dramatic increase in agonist-evoked macroscopic currents on nAChRs Locα1/β2 and Locα2/β2 in Xenopus oocytes, but no changes in agonist sensitivity. Loc-lynx1 and Loc-lynx3 only modulated nAChRs Locα1/β2 while Loc-lynx2 modulated Locα2/β2 specifically. Meanwhile, Loc-lynx1 induced a more significant increase in currents evoked by imidacloprid and epibatidine than Loc-lynx3, and the effects of Loc-lynx1 on imidacloprid and epibatidine were significantly higher than those on acetylcholine. Among three lynx proteins, only Loc-lynx1 significantly increased [(3) H]epibatidine binding on Locα1/β2. The results indicated that Loc-lynx1 had different modulation patterns in nAChRs compared to Loc-lynx2 and Loc-lynx3. Taken together, these findings indicated that three Lynx proteins were nAChR modulators and had selective activities in different nAChRs. Lynx proteins might display their selectivities from three aspects: nAChR subtypes, various agonists and different modulation patterns. Insect Lynx (Ly-6/neurotoxin) proteins act as the allosteric modulators on insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), the important targets of insecticides. We found that insect lynx proteins showed their selectivities from at least three aspects: nAChR subtypes, various agonists and different modulation patterns.

  4. Substituted 2-Aminopyrimidines Selective for α7-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Activation and Association with Acetylcholine Binding Proteins.

    PubMed

    Kaczanowska, Katarzyna; Camacho Hernandez, Gisela Andrea; Bendiks, Larissa; Kohs, Larissa; Cornejo-Bravo, Jose Manuel; Harel, Michal; Finn, M G; Taylor, Palmer

    2017-03-15

    Through studies with ligand binding to the acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP), we previously identified a series of 4,6-substituted 2-aminopyrimidines that associate with this soluble surrogate of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) in a cooperative fashion, not seen for classical nicotinic agonists and antagonists. To examine receptor interactions of this structural family on ligand-gated ion channels, we employed HEK cells transfected with cDNAs encoding three requisite receptor subtypes: α7-nAChR, α4β2-nAChR, and a serotonin receptor (5-HT3AR), along with a fluorescent reporter. Initial screening of a series of over 50 newly characterized 2-aminopyrimidines with affinity for AChBP showed only two to be agonists on the α7-nAChR below 10 μM concentration. Their unique structural features were incorporated into design of a second subset of 2-aminopyrimidines yielding several congeners that elicited α7 activation with EC50 values of 70 nM and Kd values for AChBP in a similar range. Several compounds within this series exhibit specificity for the α7-nAChR, showing no activation or antagonism of α4β2-nAChR or 5-HT3AR at concentrations up to 10 μM, while others were weaker antagonists (or partial agonists) on these receptors. Analysis following cocrystallization of four ligand complexes with AChBP show binding at the subunit interface, but with an orientation or binding pose that differs from classical nicotinic agonists and antagonists and from the previously analyzed set of 2-aminopyrimidines that displayed distinct cooperative interactions with AChBP. Orientations of aromatic side chains of these complexes are distinctive, suggesting new modes of binding at the agonist-antagonist site and perhaps an allosteric action for heteromeric nAChRs.

  5. Acetylcholine receptor pathway in lung cancer: New twists to an old story

    PubMed Central

    Niu, Xiao-Min; Lu, Shun

    2014-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies revealed that allelic variation in the α5-α3-β4 nicotine acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) cluster on chromosome 15q24-15q25.1 was associated with lung cancer risk. nAChRs are membrane ligand-gated cation channels whose activation is triggered by the binding of the endogenous neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) or other biologic compounds including nicotine. nAChRs have been found on lung cancer cells, underscoring the idea that the non-neuronal nAChR pathway has important implications for lung cancer. Several studies focusing on the treatment with nAChR antagonists with improved selectivity might trigger novel strategies for the intervention and prevention of lung cancer. Here we review the genetic risk factors for lung cancer in the nAChR gene cluster, the roles of nicotine receptors, and the molecular mechanisms of acetylcholine receptor pathways to lead to more opportunities for intervention and prevention of lung cancer. PMID:25302169

  6. Looking below the surface of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Stokes, Clare; Treinin, Millet; Papke, Roger L.

    2015-01-01

    The amino acid sequences of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) from diverse species can be compared across extracellular, transmembrane, and intracellular domains. The intracellular domains are most divergent among subtypes, yet relatively consistent among species. The diversity indicates that each nAChR subtype possesses a unique language for communication with its host cell. The conservation across species also suggests that the intracellular domains may play defining functional roles for each subtype. Secondary structure prediction indicates two relatively conserved alpha helices within the intracellular domains of all nAChRs. Among all subtypes, the intracellular domain of α7 nAChR is one of the most-well conserved, and α7 nAChRs have effects in non-neuronal cells independent of generating ion currents, making it likely that the α7 intracellular domain directly mediates signal transduction. There are potential phosphorylation and protein binding sites in the α7 intracellular domain, which are conserved and may be the basis for α7-mediated signal transduction. PMID:26067101

  7. Rare human nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α4 subunit (CHRNA4) variants affect expression and function of high-affinity nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    McClure-Begley, T D; Papke, R L; Stone, K L; Stokes, C; Levy, A D; Gelernter, J; Xie, P; Lindstrom, J; Picciotto, M R

    2014-03-01

    Nicotine, the primary psychoactive component in tobacco smoke, produces its behavioral effects through interactions with neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). α4β2 nAChRs are the most abundant in mammalian brain, and converging evidence shows that this subtype mediates the rewarding and reinforcing effects of nicotine. A number of rare variants in the CHRNA4 gene that encode the α4 nAChR subunit have been identified in human subjects and appear to be underrepresented in a cohort of smokers. We compared three of these variants (α4R336C, α4P451L, and α4R487Q) to the common variant to determine their effects on α4β2 nAChR pharmacology. We examined [(3)H]epibatidine binding, interacting proteins, and phosphorylation of the α4 nAChR subunit with liquid chromatography and tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) in HEK 293 cells and voltage-clamp electrophysiology in Xenopus laevis oocytes. We observed significant effects of the α4 variants on nAChR expression, subcellular distribution, and sensitivity to nicotine-induced receptor upregulation. Proteomic analysis of immunopurified α4β2 nAChRs incorporating the rare variants identified considerable differences in the intracellular interactomes due to these single amino acid substitutions. Electrophysiological characterization in X. laevis oocytes revealed alterations in the functional parameters of activation by nAChR agonists conferred by these α4 rare variants, as well as shifts in receptor function after incubation with nicotine. Taken together, these experiments suggest that genetic variation at CHRNA4 alters the assembly and expression of human α4β2 nAChRs, resulting in receptors that are more sensitive to nicotine exposure than those assembled with the common α4 variant. The changes in nAChR pharmacology could contribute to differences in responses to smoked nicotine in individuals harboring these rare variants.

  8. Monkey adrenal chromaffin cells express α6β4* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Hernández-Vivanco, Alicia; Hone, Arik J; Scadden, Mick L; Carmona-Hidalgo, Beatriz; McIntosh, J Michael; Albillos, Almudena

    2014-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) that contain α6 and β4 subunits have been demonstrated functionally in human adrenal chromaffin cells, rat dorsal root ganglion neurons, and on noradrenergic terminals in the hippocampus of adolescent mice. In human adrenal chromaffin cells, α6β4* nAChRs (the asterisk denotes the possible presence of additional subunits) are the predominant subtype whereas in rodents, the predominant nAChR is the α3β4* subtype. Here we present molecular and pharmacological evidence that chromaffin cells from monkey (Macaca mulatta) also express α6β4* receptors. PCR was used to show the presence of transcripts for α6 and β4 subunits and pharmacological characterization was performed using patch-clamp electrophysiology in combination with α-conotoxins that target the α6β4* subtype. Acetylcholine-evoked currents were sensitive to inhibition by BuIA[T5A,P6O] and MII[H9A,L15A]; α-conotoxins that inhibit α6-containing nAChRs. Two additional agonists were used to probe for the expression of α7 and β2-containing nAChRs. Cells with currents evoked by acetylcholine were relatively unresponsive to the α7-selctive agonist choline but responded to the agonist 5-I-A-85380. These studies provide further insights into the properties of natively expressed α6β4* nAChRs.

  9. 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

  10. Effects of a7nAChR agonist on the tissue estrogen receptor expression of castrated rats

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Feng; Gong, Fan; Lv, Jinhan; Gao, Jun; Ma, Jingzu

    2015-01-01

    Osteoporosis is one common disease in postmenopausal women due to depressed estrogen level. It has been known that inflammatory factors are involved in osteoporosis pathogenesis. One regulator of inflammatory cascade reaction, a7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (a7nAChR), therefore, may exert certain role in osteoporosis. This study thus investigated this question on an osteoporosis rat model after castration. Rats were firstly castrated to induce osteoporosis, and then received a7nAChR agonist (PNU-282987), diethylstilbestrol or saline via intraperitoneal injection. After 6 or 12 weeks, bone samples were collected for counting osteoblast number, bone density and estrogen receptor (ERα and ERβ) expression, in addition to the serum laboratory of inflammatory factors. Bone density, osteoclast number, ERα and ERβ expression level were significantly depressed in model group, and were remarkable potentiated in the drug treatment group (P<0.05). The levels of BGP and PTH in drug treatment group were decreased compared to diethylstilbestrol group, while E2 and IGF-1 showed up-regulation. Agonist of a7nAChR can up-regulate estrogen receptor expression and may prevent the occurrence and development of osteoporosis. PMID:26722551

  11. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Signaling in Tumor Growth and Metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Sandeep; Pillai, Smitha; Chellappan, Srikumar

    2011-01-01

    Cigarette smoking is highly correlated with the onset of a variety of human cancers, and continued smoking is known to abrogate the beneficial effects of cancer therapy. While tobacco smoke contains hundreds of molecules that are known carcinogens, nicotine, the main addictive component of tobacco smoke, is not carcinogenic. At the same time, nicotine has been shown to promote cell proliferation, angiogenesis, and epithelial-mesenchymal transition, leading to enhanced tumor growth and metastasis. These effects of nicotine are mediated through the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors that are expressed on a variety of neuronal and nonneuronal cells. Specific signal transduction cascades that emanate from different nAChR subunits or subunit combinations facilitate the proliferative and prosurvival functions of nicotine. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors appear to stimulate many downstream signaling cascades induced by growth factors and mitogens. It has been suggested that antagonists of nAChR signaling might have antitumor effects and might open new avenues for combating tobacco-related cancer. This paper examines the historical data connecting nicotine tumor progression and the recent efforts to target the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors to combat cancer. PMID:21541211

  12. GLUTAMATERGIC SYNAPSE FORMATION IS PROMOTED BY α7-CONTAINING NICOTINIC ACETYLCHOLINE RECEPTORS

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

    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 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 wild-type 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

  13. Circulating antibodies against nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in chagasic patients

    PubMed Central

    GOIN, J C; VENERA, G; BONINO, M BISCOGLIO DE JIMÉNEZ; STERIN-BORDA, L

    1997-01-01

    Human and experimental Chagas' disease causes peripheral nervous system damage involving neuromuscular transmission alterations at the neuromuscular junction. Additionally, autoantibodies directed to peripheral nerves and sarcolemmal proteins of skeletal muscle have been described. In this work, we analyse the ability of serum immunoglobulin factors associated with human chagasic infection to bind the affinity-purified nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) from electric organs of Discopyge tschudii and to identify the receptor subunits involved in the interaction. The frequency of serum anti-nAChR reactivity assayed by dot-blot was higher in seropositive chagasic patients than in uninfected subjects. Purified IgG obtained from chagasic patients immunoprecipitated a significantly higher fraction of the solubilized nAChR than normal IgG. Furthermore, immunoblotting assays indicated that α and β are the main subunits involved in the interaction. Chagasic IgG was able to inhibit the binding of α-bungarotoxin to the receptor in a concentration-dependent manner, confirming the contribution of the α-subunit in the autoantibody-receptor interaction. The presence of anti-nAChR antibodies was detected in 73% of chagasic patients with impairment of neuromuscular transmission in conventional electromyographical studies, indicating a strong association between seropositive reactivity against nAChR and electromyographical abnormalities in chagasic patients. The chronic binding of these autoantibodies to the nAChR could induce a decrease in the population of functional nAChRs at the neuromuscular junction and consequently contribute to the electrophysiological neuromuscular alterations described in the course of chronic Chagas' disease. PMID:9367405

  14. Heteromeric α7β2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Jie; Liu, Qiang; Tang, Pei; Mikkelsen, Jens D.; Shen, Jianxin; Whiteaker, Paul; Yakel, Jerrel L.

    2016-01-01

    The α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7 nAChR) is highly expressed in the brain, where it maintains various neuronal functions including (but not limited to) learning and memory. In addition, the protein expression levels of α7 nAChRs are altered in various brain disorders. The classic rule governing α7 nAChR assembly in the mammalian brain was that it was assembled from five α7 subunits to form a homomeric receptor pentamer. However, emerging evidence demonstrates the presence of heteromeric α7 nAChRs in heterologously expressed systems and naturally in brain neurons, where α7 subunits are co-assembled with β2 subunits to form a novel type of α7β2 nAChR. Interestingly, the α7β2 nAChR exhibits distinctive function and pharmacology from traditional homomeric α7 nAChRs. We review recent advances in probing the distribution, function, pharmacology, pathophysiology, and stoichiometry of the heteromeric α7β2 nAChR, which have provided new insights into the understanding of a novel target of cholinergic signaling. PMID:27179601

  15. Acetylcholine elongates neuronal growth cone filopodia via activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Lei Ray; Estes, Stephen; Artinian, Liana; Rehder, Vincent

    2013-07-01

    In addition to acting as a classical neurotransmitter in synaptic transmission, acetylcholine (ACh) has been shown to play a role in axonal growth and growth cone guidance. What is not well understood is how ACh acts on growth cones to affect growth cone filopodia, structures known to be important for neuronal pathfinding. We addressed this question using an identified neuron (B5) from the buccal ganglion of the pond snail Helisoma trivolvis in cell culture. ACh treatment caused pronounced filopodial elongation within minutes, an effect that required calcium influx and resulted in the elevation of the intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca]i ). Whole-cell patch clamp recordings showed that ACh caused a reduction in input resistance, a depolarization of the membrane potential, and an increase in firing frequency in B5 neurons. These effects were mediated via the activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), as the nAChR agonist dimethylphenylpiperazinium (DMPP) mimicked the effects of ACh on filopodial elongation, [Ca]i elevation, and changes in electrical activity. Moreover, the nAChR antagonist tubucurarine blocked all DMPP-induced effects. Lastly, ACh acted locally at the growth cone, because growth cones that were physically isolated from their parent neuron responded to ACh by filopodial elongation with a similar time course as growth cones that remained connected to their parent neuron. Our data revealed a critical role for ACh as a modulator of growth cone filopodial dynamics. ACh signaling was mediated via nAChRs and resulted in Ca influx, which, in turn, caused filopodial elongation.

  16. Developmental regulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors within midbrain dopamine neurons

    PubMed Central

    Azam, Layla; Chen, Yiling; Leslie, Frances M.

    2007-01-01

    We have combined anatomical and functional methodologies to provide a comprehensive analysis of the properties of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) on developing dopamine (DA) neurons. Double-labeling in situ hybridization was used to examine the expression of nAChR subunit mRNAs within developing midbrain DA neurons. As brain maturation progressed there was a change in the pattern of subunit mRNA expression within DA neurons, such that α3 and α4 subunits declined and α6 mRNA increased. Although there were strong similarities in subunit mRNA expression in substantia nigra (SNc) and ventral tegmental area (VTA), there was higher expression of α4 mRNA in SNc than VTA at gestational day (G)15, and of α5, α6 and β3 mRNAs during postnatal development. Using a superfusion neurotransmitter release paradigm to functionally characterize nicotine-stimulated release of [3H]DA from striatal slices, the properties of the nAChRs on DA terminals were also found to change with age. Functional nAChRs were detected on striatal terminals at G18. There was a decrease in maximal release in the first postnatal week, followed by an increase in nicotine efficacy and potency during the second and third postnatal weeks. In the transition from adolescence (postnatal days (P) 30 and 40) to adulthood, there was a complex pattern of functional maturation of nAChRs in ventral, but not dorsal, striatum. In males, but not females, there were significant changes in both nicotine potency and efficacy during this developmental period. These findings suggest that nAChRs may play critical functional roles throughout DA neuronal maturation. PMID:17197101

  17. Cognitive improvement by activation of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: from animal models to human pathophysiology.

    PubMed

    Thomsen, Morten S; Hansen, Henrik H; Timmerman, Daniel B; Mikkelsen, Jens D

    2010-01-01

    Agonists and positive allosteric modulators of the alpha(7) nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) are currently being developed for the treatment of cognitive disturbances in patients with schizophrenia or Alzheimer's disease. This review describes the neurobiological properties of the alpha nAChR and the cognitive effects of alpha(7) nAChR activation, focusing on the translational aspects in the development of these drugs. The functional properties and anatomical localization of the alpha(7) nAChR makes it well suited to modulate cognitive function. Accordingly, systemic administration of alpha(7) nAChR agonists improves learning, memory, and attentional function in variety of animal models, and pro-cognitive effects of alpha(7) nAChR agonists have recently been demonstrated in patients with schizophrenia or Alzheimer's disease. The alpha(7) nAChR desensitizes rapidly in vitro, and this has been a major concern in the development of alpha(7) nAChR agonists as putative drugs. Our review of the existing literature shows that development of tolerance to the behavioral effects of alpha(7) nAChR agonists does not occur in animal models or humans. However, the long-term memory-enhancing effects seen in animal models are not mimicked in healthy humans and schizophrenic patients, where attentional improvement predominates. This discrepancy may result from inherent differences in testing methods or from species differences in the level of expression of alpha(7) nAChRs in limbic brain regions, and may hamper preclinical evaluation of alpha(7) nAChR activation. It is therefore important to consider the translational power of the animal models used before entering into a clinical evaluation of the pro-cognitive effects of alpha(7) nAChR activation.

  18. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist attenuates ILC2-dependent airway hyperreactivity

    PubMed Central

    Galle-Treger, Lauriane; Suzuki, Yuzo; Patel, Nisheel; Sankaranarayanan, Ishwarya; Aron, Jennifer L.; Maazi, Hadi; Chen, Lin; Akbari, Omid

    2016-01-01

    Allergic asthma is a complex and chronic inflammatory disorder that is associated with airway hyperreactivity (AHR) and driven by Th2 cytokine secretion. Type 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) produce large amounts of Th2 cytokines and contribute to the development of AHR. Here, we show that ILC2s express the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR), which is thought to have an anti-inflammatory role in several inflammatory diseases. We show that engagement of a specific agonist with α7nAChR on ILC2s reduces ILC2 effector function and represses ILC2-dependent AHR, while decreasing expression of ILC2 key transcription factor GATA-3 and critical inflammatory modulator NF-κB, and reducing phosphorylation of upstream kinase IKKα/β. Additionally, the specific α7nAChR agonist reduces cytokine production and AHR in a humanized ILC2 mouse model. Collectively, our data suggest that α7nAChR expressed by ILC2s is a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of ILC2-mediated asthma. PMID:27752043

  19. 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

  20. Natural Compounds Interacting with Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: From Low-Molecular Weight Ones to Peptides and Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Kudryavtsev, Denis; Shelukhina, Irina; Vulfius, Catherine; Makarieva, Tatyana; Stonik, Valentin; Zhmak, Maxim; Ivanov, Igor; Kasheverov, Igor; Utkin, Yuri; Tsetlin, Victor

    2015-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) fulfill a variety of functions making identification and analysis of nAChR subtypes a challenging task. Traditional instruments for nAChR research are d-tubocurarine, snake venom protein α-bungarotoxin (α-Bgt), and α-conotoxins, neurotoxic peptides from Conus snails. Various new compounds of different structural classes also interacting with nAChRs have been recently identified. Among the low-molecular weight compounds are alkaloids pibocin, varacin and makaluvamines C and G. 6-Bromohypaphorine from the mollusk Hermissenda crassicornis does not bind to Torpedo nAChR but behaves as an agonist on human α7 nAChR. To get more selective α-conotoxins, computer modeling of their complexes with acetylcholine-binding proteins and distinct nAChRs was used. Several novel three-finger neurotoxins targeting nAChRs were described and α-Bgt inhibition of GABA-A receptors was discovered. Information on the mechanisms of nAChR interactions with the three-finger proteins of the Ly6 family was found. Snake venom phospholipases A2 were recently found to inhibit different nAChR subtypes. Blocking of nAChRs in Lymnaea stagnalis neurons was shown for venom C-type lectin-like proteins, appearing to be the largest molecules capable to interact with the receptor. A huge nAChR molecule sensible to conformational rearrangements accommodates diverse binding sites recognizable by structurally very different compounds. PMID:26008231

  1. Computational determination of the binding mode of α-conotoxin to nicotinic acetylcholine receptor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tabassum, Nargis; Yu, Rilei; Jiang, Tao

    2016-12-01

    Conotoxins belong to the large families of disulfide-rich peptide toxins from cone snail venom, and can act on a broad spectrum of ion channels and receptors. They are classified into different subtypes based on their targets. The α-conotoxins selectively inhibit the current of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Because of their unique selectivity towards distinct nAChR subtypes, α-conotoxins become valuable tools in nAChR study. In addition to the X-ray structures of α-conotoxins in complex with acetylcholine-binding protein, a homolog of the nAChR ligand-binding domain, the high-resolution crystal structures of the extracellular domain of the α1 and α9 subunits are also obtained. Such structures not only revealed the details of the configuration of nAChR, but also provided higher sequence identity templates for modeling the binding modes of α-conotoxins to nAChR. This mini-review summarizes recent modeling studies for the determination of the binding modes of α-conotoxins to nAChR. As there are not crystal structures of the nAChR in complex with conotoxins, computational modeling in combination of mutagenesis data is expected to reveal the molecular recognition mechanisms that govern the interactions between α-conotoxins and nAChR at molecular level. An accurate determination of the binding modes of α-conotoxins on AChRs allows rational design of α-conotoxin analogues with improved potency or selectivity to nAChRs.

  2. 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.

  3. Modulation of nicotinic acetylcholine and N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors by some Hymenopteran venoms.

    PubMed

    Zalat, Samy; Elbana, Shereen; Rizzoli, Silvio; Schmidt, Justin O; Mellor, Ian R

    2005-09-01

    The effect of 19 venoms from solitary wasps, solitary bees, social wasps and ants were investigated for their effects on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) and ionotropic glutamate receptors (IGRs) of both the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDAR) and non-NMDAR type. Whole-cell patch clamp of human muscle TE671 cells was used to study nAChR, and of rat cortical and cerebellar granule cells for IGRs. Solitary wasp venoms caused significant voltage-dependent antagonism of nAChR responses to 10 microM ACh and NMDAR responses to 100 microM NMDA (+10 microM glycine) when co-applied at 1 microg/ml with the agonists. At positive holding potentials (V(H)) potentiation of these receptors was observed with some venoms. Solitary bee venoms only affected nAChR by causing either voltage-independent antagonism or potentiation of their responses to 10 microM ACh. Of four social wasp venoms, one acted on nAChR by potentiating responses to 10 ACh, while another generated an ACh-like response when applied alone. They had no effect on IGRs. Of the two ant venoms, one caused voltage-independent inhibition of nAChR. Neither affected IGRs. The data indicate the presence of nAChR agonists and antagonists and NMDAR antagonists in Hymenopteran venoms and warrant further investigation to separate and identify these venom components.

  4. Endogenous activation of nAChRs and NMDA receptors contributes to the excitability of CA1 stratum radiatum interneurons in rat hippocampal slices: effects of kynurenic acid.

    PubMed

    Alkondon, Manickavasagom; Pereira, Edna F R; Albuquerque, Edson X

    2011-10-15

    CA1 stratum radiatum interneurons (SRIs) express α7 nicotinic receptors (nAChRs) and receive inputs from glutamatergic neurons/axons that express α3β4β2 nAChRs. To test the hypothesis that endogenously active α7 and/or α3β4β2 nAChRs control the excitability of CA1 SRIs in the rat hippocampus, we examined the effects of selective receptor antagonists on spontaneous fast current transients (CTs) recorded from these interneurons under cell-attached configuration. The frequency of CTs, which represent action potentials, increased in the absence of extracellular Mg(2+) and decreased in the presence of the α3β4β2 nAChR antagonist mecamylamine (3 μM) or the NMDA receptor antagonist APV (50 μM). However, it was unaffected by the α7 nAChR antagonist MLA (10 nM) or the AMPA receptor antagonist CNQX (10 μM). Thus, in addition to synaptically and tonically activated NMDA receptors, α3β4β2 nAChRs that are present on glutamatergic axons/neurons synapsing onto SRIs and are activated by basal levels of acetylcholine contribute to the maintenance of the excitability of these interneurons. Kynurenic acid (KYNA), an astrocyte-derived kynurenine metabolite whose levels are increased in the brains of patients with schizophrenia, also controls the excitability of SRIs. At high micromolar concentrations, KYNA, acting primarily as an NMDA receptor antagonist, decreased the CT frequency recorded from the interneurons. At 2 μM, KYNA reduced the CA1 SRI excitability via mechanisms independent of NMDA receptor block. KYNA-induced reduction of excitability of SRIs may contribute to sensory gating deficits that have been attributed to deficient hippocampal GABAergic transmission and high levels of KYNA in the brain of patients with schizophrenia.

  5. Functional interaction of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and Na+/K+ ATPase from Locusta migratoria manilensis (Meyen).

    PubMed

    Bao, Haibo; Sun, Huahua; Xiao, Youxin; Zhang, Yixi; Wang, Xin; Xu, Xiaoyong; Liu, Zewen; Fang, Jichao; Li, Zhong

    2015-03-06

    Associated proteins are important for the correct functioning of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). In the present study, a neonicotinoid-agarose affinity column was used to isolate related proteins from a solubilized membrane preparation from the nervous system of Locusta migratoria manilensis (Meyen). 1530 peptides were identified and most of them were involved in the membranous structure, molecular interaction and cellular communication. Among these peptides, Na(+)/K(+) ATPase had the highest MASCOT score and were involved in the molecular interaction, which suggested that Na(+)/K(+) ATPase and nAChRs might have strong and stable interactions in insect central nervous system. In the present study, functional interactions between nAChRs and Na(+)/K(+) ATPase were examined by heterologous expression in Xenopus oocytes. The results showed that the activated nAChRs increased pump currents of Na(+)/K(+) ATPase, which did not require current flow through open nAChRs. In turn, Na(+)/K(+) ATPase significantly increased agonist sensitivities of nAChRs in a pump activity-independent manner and reduced the maximum current (Imax) of nAChRs. These findings provide novel insights concerning the functional interactions between insect nAChRs and Na(+)/K(+) ATPase.

  6. alpha7 Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor knockout selectively enhances ethanol-, but not beta-amyloid-induced neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    de Fiebre, Nancyellen C; de Fiebre, Christopher M

    2005-01-03

    The alpha7 subtype of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) has been implicated as a potential site of action for two neurotoxins, ethanol and the Alzheimer's disease related peptide, beta-amyloid. Here, we utilized primary neuronal cultures of cerebral cortex from alpha7 nAChR null mutant mice to examine the role of this receptor in modulating the neurotoxic properties of subchronic, "binge" ethanol and beta-amyloid. Knockout of the alpha7 nAChR gene selectively enhanced ethanol-induced neurotoxicity in a gene dosage-related fashion. Susceptibility of cultures to beta-amyloid induced toxicity, however, was unaffected by alpha7 nAChR gene null mutation. Further, beta-amyloid did not inhibit the binding of the highly alpha7-selective radioligand, [(125)I]alpha-bungarotoxin. On the other hand, in studies in Xenopus oocytes ethanol efficaciously inhibited alpha7 nAChR function. These data suggest that alpha7 nAChRs modulate the neurotoxic effects of binge ethanol, but not the neurotoxicity produced by beta-amyloid. It is hypothesized that inhibition of alpha7 nAChRs by ethanol provides partial protection against the neurotoxic properties of subchronic ethanol.

  7. Tobacco nitrosamine N-nitrosonornicotine as inhibitor of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Nunes-Alves, Ariane; Nery, Arthur A; Ulrich, Henning

    2013-01-01

    Nitrosamines are well known for their carcinogenic potential. Recently, it was found that some of them may also interact with human nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtypes. This work studied the effects of N-nitrosonornicotine (NNN) on recombinant rat α3β4 nAChR in HEK cells as well as on nAChR endogenously expressed in PC12 pheochromocytoma cells and in BC3H1 muscle-type cells. Whole-cell recording in combination with the cell-flow technique for agonist and inhibitor application in the millisecond time region revealed that NNN inhibits the activity of neuronal nAChR expressed in HEK or PC12, whereas weak inhibitory effects on muscle-type nAChR were observed at NNN concentrations up to 3 mM. Pharmacological actions of NNN and the inhibition mechanism were studied in detail using recombinant α3β4 nAChR expressed in HEK cells as a model. NNN-induced inhibition of nicotine-evoked α3β4 nAChR activity was dose-dependent with an inhibitory constant (IC(50)) of 0.92 ± 0.05 mM. Analysis based on mathematical models indicated a noncompetitive inhibition mechanism of the rat α3β4 nAChR by NNN. NNN's mechanism of action involves acceleration of conversion of the receptor from active to desensitized forms. In summary, this work shows that NNN inhibits rat α3β4 nAChR in a noncompetitive way and interacts weakly with muscular nAChR.

  8. Prenatal Exposure to Nicotine and Childhood Asthma: Role of Nicotine Acetylcholine Receptors, Neuropeptides, and Fibronectin Expression in Lung

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-12-01

    nAChRs) that are expressed by lung cells termed fibroblasts and pulmonary neuroendocrine cells ( PNEC ). In fibroblasts, this interaction triggers the...exaggerated expression of a connective tissue protein called fibronectin. In PNECs , nicotine stimulates cell growth and the excessive secretion of...acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed by fibroblasts and pulmonary neuroendocrine cells ( PNECs ), among other embryonic lung cells. In

  9. Mode of action of triflumezopyrim: A novel mesoionic insecticide which inhibits the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Cordova, Daniel; Benner, Eric A; Schroeder, Mark E; Holyoke, Caleb W; Zhang, Wenming; Pahutski, Thomas F; Leighty, Robert M; Vincent, Daniel R; Hamm, Jason C

    2016-07-01

    Triflumezopyrim, a newly commercialized molecule from DuPont Crop Protection, belongs to the novel class of mesoionic insecticides. This study characterizes the biochemical and physiological action of this novel insecticide. Using membranes from the aphid, Myzus persicae, triflumezopyrim was found to displace (3)H-imidacloprid with a Ki value of 43 nM with competitive binding results indicating that triflumezopyrim binds to the orthosteric site of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR). In voltage clamp studies using dissociated Periplaneta americana neurons, triflumezopyrim inhibits nAChR currents with an IC50 of 0.6 nM. Activation of nAChR currents was minimal and required concentrations ≥100 μM. Xenopus oocytes expressing chimeric nAChRs (Drosophila α2/chick β2) showed similar inhibitory effects from triflumezopyrim. In P. americana neurons, co-application experiments with acetylcholine reveal the inhibitory action of triflumezopyrim to be rapid and prolonged in nature. Such physiological action is distinct from other insecticides in IRAC Group 4 in which the toxicological mode of action is attributed to nAChR agonism. Mesoionic insecticides act via inhibition of the orthosteric binding site of the nAChR despite previous beliefs that such action would translate to poor insect control. Triflumezopyrim is the first commercialized insecticide from this class and provides outstanding control of hoppers, including the brown planthopper, Nilaparvata lugens, which is already displaying strong resistance to neonicotinoids such as imidacloprid.

  10. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are modulated by zinc.

    PubMed

    Vázquez-Gómez, Elizabeth; García-Colunga, Jesús

    2009-01-01

    It is known that zinc modulates nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Here, we studied the effects of zinc on neuronal alpha4beta4 nAChRs, expressed in Xenopus oocytes and activated by nicotine. Membrane ion currents elicited by nicotine (10 nM to 100 microM) were enhanced by zinc (100 microM). Maximal zinc potentiation of the nicotine-activated current (2530%) occurred at 50 nM nicotine, and potentiation gradually decreased as the nicotine concentration increased. The EC(50) and IC(50) for the nicotine-activated current were 639 nM and 14.7 microM nicotine, respectively. Both parameters decreased in the presence of zinc to 160 nM and 4.6 microM, respectively, probably due to an increase of sensitivity of nAChRs for nicotine. We used different concentrations and durations of exposure to nicotine, due to desensitization of nAChRs directly depends on both these factors. With 500 nM nicotine and 20 min washing periods between nicotine applications, zinc potentiation remained constant, 901% for 2 min and 813% for 20 min of nicotine exposure. With continuous application of nicotine, zinc potentiation decreased as the time of nicotine exposure increased, 721% for 2 min and 254% for 48 min of nicotine exposure. Our results indicate that zinc-potentiating effects on alpha4beta4 nAChRs strongly depend on both concentration and time of exposure to nicotine, suggesting that zinc potentiation depends on the degree of desensitization.

  11. Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Structure and Function and Response to Nicotine.

    PubMed

    Dani, John A

    2015-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) belong to the "Cys-loop" superfamily of ligand-gated ion channels that includes GABAA, glycine, and serotonin (5-HT3) receptors. There are 16 homologous mammalian nAChR subunits encoded by a multigene family. These subunits combine to form many different nAChR subtypes with various expression patterns, diverse functional properties, and differing pharmacological characteristics. Because cholinergic innervation is pervasive and nAChR expression is extremely broad, practically every area of the brain is impinged upon by nicotinic mechanisms. This review briefly examines the structural and functional properties of the receptor/channel complex itself. The review also summarizes activation and desensitization of nAChRs by the low nicotine concentrations obtained from tobacco. Knowledge of the three-dimensional structure and the structural characteristics of channel gating has reached an advanced stage. Likewise, the basic functional properties of the channel also are reasonably well understood. It is these receptor/channel properties that underlie the participation of nAChRs in nearly every anatomical region of the mammalian brain.

  12. Regulation of hippocampal inhibitory circuits by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Griguoli, Marilena; Cherubini, Enrico

    2012-01-01

    The hippocampal network comprises a large variety of locally connected GABAergic interneurons exerting a powerful control on network excitability and which are responsible for the oscillatory behaviour crucial for information processing. GABAergic interneurons receive an important cholinergic innervation from the medial septum-diagonal band complex of the basal forebrain and are endowed with a variety of muscarinic and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs and nAChRs) that regulate their activity. Deficits in the cholinergic system lead to the impairment of high cognitive functions, which are particularly relevant in neurodegenerative pathologies such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases as well as in schizophrenia. Here, we highlight some recent advances in the mechanisms by which cholinergic signalling via nAChRs regulates local inhibitory circuits in the hippocampus, early in postnatal life and in adulthood. We also discuss recent findings concerning the functional role of nAChRs in controlling short- and long-term modifications of synaptic efficacy. Insights into these processes may provide new targets for the therapeutic control of pathological conditions associated with cholinergic dysfunctions. PMID:22124144

  13. Subunit profiling and functional characteristics of acetylcholine receptors in GT1-7 cells.

    PubMed

    Arai, Yuki; Ishii, Hirotaka; Kobayashi, Makito; Ozawa, Hitoshi

    2017-03-01

    GnRH neurons form a final common pathway for the central regulation of reproduction. Although the involvement of acetylcholine in GnRH secretion has been reported, direct effects of acetylcholine and expression profiles of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) still remain to be studied. Using immortalized GnRH neurons (GT1-7 cells), we analyzed molecular expression and functionality of AChRs. Expression of the mRNAs were identified in the order α7 > β2 = β1 ≧ α4 ≧ α5 = β4 = δ > α3 for nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits and m4 > m2 for muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) subtypes. Furthermore, this study revealed that α7 nAChRs contributed to Ca(2+) influx and GnRH release and that m2 and m4 mAChRs inhibited forskolin-induced cAMP production and isobutylmethylxanthine-induced GnRH secretion. These findings demonstrate the molecular profiles of AChRs, which directly contribute to GnRH secretion in GT1-7 cells, and provide one possible regulatory action of acetylcholine in GnRH neurons.

  14. Role of acetylcholine receptors in proliferation and differentiation of P19 embryonal carcinoma cells

    SciTech Connect

    Resende, R.R.; Alves, A.S.; Britto, L.R.G; Ulrich, H.

    2008-04-15

    Coordinated proliferation and differentiation of progenitor cells is the base for production of appropriate numbers of neurons and glia during neuronal development in order to establish normal brain functions. We have used murine embryonal carcinoma P19 cells as an in vitro model for early differentiation to study participation of nicotinic (nAChR) and muscarinic acetylcholine (mAChR) receptors in the proliferation of neural progenitor cells and their differentiation to neurons. We have previously shown that functional nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) already expressed in embryonic cells mediate elevations in cytosolic free calcium concentration ([Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i}) via calcium influx through nAChR channels whereas intracellular stores contribute to nAChR- and mAChR-mediated calcium fluxes in differentiated cells [Resende et al., Cell Calcium 43 (2008) 107-121]. In the present study, we have demonstrated that nicotine provoked inhibition of proliferation in embryonic cells as determined by BrdU labeling. However, in neural progenitor cells nicotine stimulated proliferation which was reversed in the presence of inhibitors of calcium mobilization from intracellular stores, indicating that liberation of intracellular calcium contributed to this proliferation induction. Muscarine induced proliferation stimulation in progenitor cells by activation of G{alpha}{sub q/11}-coupled M{sub 1}, M{sub 3} and M{sub 5} receptors and intracellular calcium stores, whereas G{alpha}{sub i/o}-protein coupled M{sub 2} receptor activity mediated neuronal differentiation.

  15. Modes of action, resistance and toxicity of insecticides targeting nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Ihara, Makoto; Buckingham, Steven D; Matsuda, Kazuhiko; Sattelle, David B

    2017-02-06

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are members of the cys-loop superfamily of ligand-gated ion channels (cys-loop LGICs) and mediate fast cholinergic synaptic transmission in the nervous system of insects. The completion of many insect genome projects has greatly enhanced our understanding of the individual subunits that make up nAChR gene families from an insect genetic model organism (Drosophila melanogaster), crop pests, disease vectors and beneficial (pollinator) species. In addition to considerable insect nAChR subunit diversity, individual subunits can be subject to alternative splicing and RNA editing and these post-transcriptional modifications can add significantly to the diversity of nAChR receptor subtypes. The actions of insecticides targeting nAChRs, notably cartap, neonicotinoids, sulfoximines, flupyradifurone, spinosyns and triflumezopyrim are reviewed. Structural studies obtained using an acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP) co-crystallised with neonicotinoids have yielded important new insights into the requirements for neonicotinoid insecticide - nAChR interactions. The persistent application of insecticides to crop pests leads to the onset of resistance and several examples of resistance to insecticides targeting nAChRs have been documented. Understanding the molecular basis of resistance can inform our understanding of the mechanism of insecticide action. It also provides an important driver for the development of new chemistry, diagnostic tests for resistance and the adoption of application strategies designed to attenuate such problems. Finally, we consider toxicity issues relating to nAChR-active insecticides, with particular reference to beneficial insect species (pollinators) as well as mammalian and avian toxicity. This review is part of the special issue "Insecticide Mode of Action: From Insect to Mammalian Toxicity.".

  16. 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

  17. The Protective Effect of Alpha 7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Activation on Critical Illness and Its Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    REN, Chao; TONG, Ya-lin; LI, Jun-cong; LU, Zhong-qiu; YAO, Yong-ming

    2017-01-01

    Critical illnesses and injuries are recognized as major threats to human health, and they are usually accompanied by uncontrolled inflammation and dysfunction of immune response. The alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAchR), which is a primary receptor of cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway (CAP), exhibits great benefits for critical ill conditions. It is composed of 5 identical α7 subunits that form a central pore with high permeability for calcium. This putative structure is closely associated with its functional states. Activated α7nAChR exhibits extensive anti-inflammatory and immune modulatory reactions, including lowered pro-inflammatory cytokines levels, decreased expressions of chemokines as well as adhesion molecules, and altered differentiation and activation of immune cells, which are important in maintaining immune homeostasis. Well understanding of the effects and mechanisms of α7nAChR will be of great value in exploring effective targets for treating critical diseases. PMID:28123345

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

    PubMed

    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.

  19. 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...

  20. Identification of a novel nicotinic acetylcholine receptor structural subunit expressed in goldfish retina

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    A new non-alpha (n alpha) member of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) gene family designated GFn alpha-2 has been identified in goldfish retina by cDNA cloning. This cDNA clone encodes a protein with structural features common to all nAChR subunits sequenced to date; however, unlike all known alpha-subunits of the receptor, it lacks the cysteine residues believed to be involved in acetylcholine binding. Northern blot analysis shows multiple transcripts hybridizing to the GFn alpha-2 cDNA in goldfish retina but undetectable levels of hybridizable RNA in brain, muscle, or liver. S1 nuclease protection experiments indicate that multiple mRNAs are expressed in retina with regions identical or very similar to the GFn alpha-2 sequence. In situ hybridization shows that the gene encoding GFn alpha-2 is expressed predominantly in the ganglion cell layer of the retina. PMID:2465296

  1. A fluorinated quinuclidine benzamide named LMA 10203 acts as an agonist of insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Mathé-Allainmat, Monique; Bodereau-Dubois, Béatrice; Lapied, Bruno; Lebreton, Jacques; Thany, Steeve H

    2012-06-01

    In the present study, we take advantage of the fact that cockroach dorsal unpaired median neurons express different nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes to demonstrate that simple quinuclidine benzamides such as the 2-fluorinated benzamide LMA 10203, could act as an agonist of cockroach α-bungarotoxin-insensitive nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtype, called nAChR2. Indeed, 1 mM LMA 10203 induced ionic currents which were partially blocked by 0.5 μM α-bungarotoxin and methyllycaconitine and completely blocked by 5 μM mecamylamine. Moreover, the current-voltage curve revealed that the ionic current induced by LMA 10203 increased from -30 mV to +20 mV confirming that it acted as an agonist of α-bungarotoxin-insensitive nAChR2. In addition, 1 mM LMA 10203 induced a depolarization of the sixth abdominal ganglion and this neuroexcitatory activity was completely blocked by 5 μM mecamylamine. These data suggest that nAChR2 was also expressed at the postsynaptic level on the synapse between the cercal afferent nerve and the giant interneurons. Interestingly, despite LMA 10203 being an agonist of cockroach nicotinic receptors, it had a poor insecticidal activity. We conclude that LMA 10203 could be used as an interesting compound to identify specific insect nAChR subtypes.

  2. 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

    2015-04-02

    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.

  3. Negative allosteric modulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors blocks nicotine self-administration in rats.

    PubMed

    Yoshimura, Ryan F; Hogenkamp, Derk J; Li, Wen Y; Tran, Minhtam B; Belluzzi, James D; Whittemore, Edward R; Leslie, Frances M; Gee, Kelvin W

    2007-12-01

    Drugs that antagonize nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) can be used to inhibit nicotine-induced behavior in both humans and animals. The aim of our experiments is to establish a proof-of-principle that antagonism of nAChRs by negative allosteric modulation can alter behavior in a relevant animal model of addiction, nicotine self-administration. We have identified a novel, negative allosteric modulator of nAChRs, UCI-30002 [N-(1,2,3,4-tetrahydro-1-naphthyl)-4-nitroaniline], with selectivity for the major neuronal nAChR subtypes over muscle-type nAChRs. After systemic administration, UCI-30002 significantly reduces nicotine self-administration in rats on both fixed ratio and progressive ratio schedules of reinforcement. The minimum effective dose that significantly alters nicotine self-administration corresponds to brain concentrations of UCI-30002 that produce at least 30% inhibition of the major neuronal nAChR subtypes measured in vitro. UCI-30002 has no effect on responding for food reinforcement in rats on either type of schedule, indicating that there is no effect on general responding or natural reward. UCI-30002 represents validation of the concept that negative allosteric modulators may have significant benefits as a strategy for treating nicotine addiction and encourages the development of subtype-selective modulators.

  4. Secreted Isoform of Human Lynx1 (SLURP-2): Spatial Structure and Pharmacology of Interactions with Different Types of Acetylcholine Receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyukmanova, E. N.; Shulepko, M. A.; Shenkarev, Z. O.; Bychkov, M. L.; Paramonov, A. S.; Chugunov, A. O.; Kulbatskii, D. S.; Arvaniti, M.; Dolejsi, Eva; Schaer, T.; Arseniev, A. S.; Efremov, R. G.; Thomsen, M. S.; Dolezal, V.; Bertrand, D.; Dolgikh, D. A.; Kirpichnikov, M. P.

    2016-08-01

    Human-secreted Ly-6/uPAR-related protein-2 (SLURP-2) regulates the growth and differentiation of epithelial cells. Previously, the auto/paracrine activity of SLURP-2 was considered to be mediated via its interaction with the α3β2 subtype of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Here, we describe the structure and pharmacology of a recombinant analogue of SLURP-2. Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy revealed a ‘three-finger’ fold of SLURP-2 with a conserved β-structural core and three protruding loops. Affinity purification using cortical extracts revealed that SLURP-2 could interact with the α3, α4, α5, α7, β2, and β4 nAChR subunits, revealing its broader pharmacological profile. SLURP-2 inhibits acetylcholine-evoked currents at α4β2 and α3β2-nAChRs (IC50 ~0.17 and >3 μM, respectively) expressed in Xenopus oocytes. In contrast, at α7-nAChRs, SLURP-2 significantly enhances acetylcholine-evoked currents at concentrations <1 μM but induces inhibition at higher concentrations. SLURP-2 allosterically interacts with human M1 and M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs) that are overexpressed in CHO cells. SLURP-2 was found to promote the proliferation of human oral keratinocytes via interactions with α3β2-nAChRs, while it inhibited cell growth via α7-nAChRs. SLURP-2/mAChRs interactions are also probably involved in the control of keratinocyte growth. Computer modeling revealed possible SLURP-2 binding to the ‘classical’ orthosteric agonist/antagonist binding sites at α7 and α3β2-nAChRs.

  5. Secreted Isoform of Human Lynx1 (SLURP-2): Spatial Structure and Pharmacology of Interactions with Different Types of Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Lyukmanova, E. N.; Shulepko, M. A.; Shenkarev, Z. O.; Bychkov, M. L.; Paramonov, A. S.; Chugunov, A. O.; Kulbatskii, D. S.; Arvaniti, M.; Dolejsi, Eva; Schaer, T.; Arseniev, A. S.; Efremov, R. G.; Thomsen, M. S.; Dolezal, V.; Bertrand, D.; Dolgikh, D. A.; Kirpichnikov, M. P.

    2016-01-01

    Human-secreted Ly-6/uPAR-related protein-2 (SLURP-2) regulates the growth and differentiation of epithelial cells. Previously, the auto/paracrine activity of SLURP-2 was considered to be mediated via its interaction with the α3β2 subtype of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Here, we describe the structure and pharmacology of a recombinant analogue of SLURP-2. Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy revealed a ‘three-finger’ fold of SLURP-2 with a conserved β-structural core and three protruding loops. Affinity purification using cortical extracts revealed that SLURP-2 could interact with the α3, α4, α5, α7, β2, and β4 nAChR subunits, revealing its broader pharmacological profile. SLURP-2 inhibits acetylcholine-evoked currents at α4β2 and α3β2-nAChRs (IC50 ~0.17 and >3 μM, respectively) expressed in Xenopus oocytes. In contrast, at α7-nAChRs, SLURP-2 significantly enhances acetylcholine-evoked currents at concentrations <1 μM but induces inhibition at higher concentrations. SLURP-2 allosterically interacts with human M1 and M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs) that are overexpressed in CHO cells. SLURP-2 was found to promote the proliferation of human oral keratinocytes via interactions with α3β2-nAChRs, while it inhibited cell growth via α7-nAChRs. SLURP-2/mAChRs interactions are also probably involved in the control of keratinocyte growth. Computer modeling revealed possible SLURP-2 binding to the ‘classical’ orthosteric agonist/antagonist binding sites at α7 and α3β2-nAChRs. PMID:27485575

  6. Functional characterisation of a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α subunit from the brown dog tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus☆

    PubMed Central

    Lees, Kristin; Jones, Andrew K.; Matsuda, Kazuhiko; Akamatsu, Miki; Sattelle, David B.; Woods, Debra J.; Bowman, Alan S.

    2014-01-01

    Ticks and tick-borne diseases have a major impact on human and animal health worldwide. Current control strategies rely heavily on the use of chemical acaricides, most of which target the CNS and with increasing resistance, new drugs are urgently needed. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are targets of highly successful insecticides. We isolated a full-length nAChR α subunit from a normalised cDNA library from the synganglion (brain) of the brown dog tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus. Phylogenetic analysis has shown this R. sanguineus nAChR to be most similar to the insect α1 nAChR group and has been named Rsanα1. Rsanα1 is distributed in multiple tick tissues and is present across all life-stages. When expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes Rsanα1 failed to function as a homomer, with and without the addition of either Caenorhabditis elegans resistance-to-cholinesterase (RIC)-3 or X. laevis RIC-3. When co-expressed with chicken β2 nAChR, Rsanα1 evoked concentration-dependent, inward currents in response to acetylcholine (ACh) and showed sensitivity to nicotine (100 μM) and choline (100 μM). Rsanα1/β2 was insensitive to both imidacloprid (100 μM) and spinosad (100 μM). The unreliable expression of Rsanα1 in vitro suggests that additional subunits or chaperone proteins may be required for more robust expression. This study enhances our understanding of nAChRs in arachnids and may provide a basis for further studies on the interaction of compounds with the tick nAChR as part of a discovery process for novel acaricides. PMID:24291321

  7. Characterization of alpha-conotoxin interactions with the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and monoclonal antibodies.

    PubMed Central

    Ashcom, J D; Stiles, B G

    1997-01-01

    The venoms of predatory marine cone snails, Conus species, contain numerous peptides and proteins with remarkably diverse pharmacological properties. One group of peptides are the alpha-conotoxins, which consist of 13-19 amino acids constrained by two disulphide bonds. A biologically active fluorescein derivative of Conus geographus alpha-conotoxin GI (FGI) was used in novel solution-phase-binding assays with purified Torpedo californica nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAchR) and monoclonal antibodies developed against the toxin. The binding of FGI to nAchR or antibody had apparent dissociation constants of 10-100 nM. Structure-function studies with alpha-conotoxin GI analogues composed of a single disulphide loop revealed that different conformational restraints are necessary for effective toxin interactions with nAchR or antibodies. PMID:9359860

  8. 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

  9. Varenicline enhances oxidized LDL uptake by increasing expression of LOX-1 and CD36 scavenger receptors through α7 nAChR in macrophages.

    PubMed

    Kanaoka, Yuki; Koga, Mitsuhisa; Sugiyama, Keita; Ohishi, Kaoru; Kataoka, Yasufumi; Yamauchi, Atsushi

    2017-04-01

    Varenicline is a widely used and effective drug for smoking cessation. It is a partial agonist of the α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) and full agonist of α7 nAChR. We have reported that varenicline aggravates formation of atherosclerotic plaques through α7 nAChR in apolipoprotein E knockout mice. However, little is known about its effects on macrophages in atherosclerotic plaques. Here, we ascertained whether varenicline promotes oxidized low-density lipoprotein (oxLDL) uptake in mouse peritoneal macrophages in vitro and clarified its mechanism. We investigated the effects of varenicline (1-10μM) on expression of scavenger receptors (lectin-like oxidized LDL receptor-1 (LOX-1), cluster of differentiation (CD) 36 and scavenger receptor class A (SR-A)) in RAW264.7 cells. Expression of protein and mRNA was determined by western blotting and real-time quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, respectively. Effects of varenicline (10μM) on oxLDL uptake were examined by counting the number of macrophages stained with oil red O and hematoxylin. Varenicline significantly increased expression of the protein and mRNA of LOX-1 and CD36, but not SR-A, in RAW264.7 cells, and increased oxLDL uptake in macrophages. These effects of varenicline were blocked significantly by an α7 nAChR antagonist, methyllycaconitine (MLA) (50nM), but not by an α4β2 nAChR antagonist, dihydro-β-erythroidine hydrobromide (DHβE) (1μM). These data suggest that varenicline promotes oxLDL uptake by upregulating expression of LOX-1 and CD36 through α7 nAChR in macrophages. We found that varenicline significantly activated extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) and nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) signaling pathways in RAW264.7 cells. This activation was blocked by MLA but not DHβE. Therefore, ERK1/2-NF-κB signaling pathway is highly likely to be responsible for varenicline-induced upregulation of LOX-1 and CD36 expression through α7 nAChR in

  10. Competition, Selectivity and Efficacy of Analogs of A-84543 for Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors with Repositioning of Pyridine Nitrogen

    PubMed Central

    Ogunjirin, Adebowale E.; Fortunak, Joseph M.; Brown, LaVerne L.; Xiao, Yingxian; Dávila-García, Martha I.

    2015-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) play a crucial role in a number of clinically relevant mental and neurological pathways, as well as autonomic and immune functions. The development of subtype-selective ligands for nAChRs therefore is potentially useful for targeted therapeutic management of conditions where nAChRs are involved. We tested if selectivity for a particular nAChR subtype can be achieved through small structural modifications of a lead compound containing the nicotinic pharmacophore by changing the distance between the electronegative elements. For this purpose, analogs of A-84543 were designed, synthesized and characterized as potentially new nAChR subtype-selective ligands. Compounds were tested for their binding properties in rat cerebral cortical tissue homogenates, and subtype-selectivity was determined using stably transfected HEK cells expressing different nAChR subtypes. All compounds synthesized were found to competitively displace [3H]-epibatidine ([3H]EB) from the nAChR binding site. Of all the analogues, H-11MNH showed highest affinity for nAChRs compared to a ~ 5 to10-fold lower affinity of A-84543. All other compounds had affinities > 10,000 nM. Both A-84543 and H-11MNH have highest affinity for α2β2 and α4β2 nAChRs and show moderate affinity for β4- and α7-containing receptors. H-11MNH was found to be a full agonist with high potency at α3β4, while A-84543 is a partial agonist with low potency. Based on their unique pharmacological binding properties we suggest that A-84543 and its desmethylpyrrolidine analog can be useful as pharmacological ligands for studying nAChRs if selective pharmacological and/or genetic tools are used to mask the function of other receptors subtypes. PMID:26508288

  11. Inhibition of α9α10 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors prevents chemotherapy-induced neuropathic pain

    PubMed Central

    Romero, Haylie K.; Christensen, Sean B.; Gajewiak, Joanna; Ramachandra, Renuka; Elmslie, Keith S.; Vetter, Douglas E.; Ghelardini, Carla; Iadonato, Shawn P.; Mercado, Jose L.; Olivera, Baldomera M.; McIntosh, J. Michael

    2017-01-01

    Opioids are first-line drugs for moderate to severe acute pain and cancer pain. However, these medications are associated with severe side effects, and whether they are efficacious in treatment of chronic nonmalignant pain remains controversial. Medications that act through alternative molecular mechanisms are critically needed. Antagonists of α9α10 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been proposed as an important nonopioid mechanism based on studies demonstrating prevention of neuropathology after trauma-induced nerve injury. However, the key α9α10 ligands characterized to date are at least two orders of magnitude less potent on human vs. rodent nAChRs, limiting their translational application. Furthermore, an alternative proposal that these ligands achieve their beneficial effects by acting as agonists of GABAB receptors has caused confusion over whether blockade of α9α10 nAChRs is the fundamental underlying mechanism. To address these issues definitively, we developed RgIA4, a peptide that exhibits high potency for both human and rodent α9α10 nAChRs, and was at least 1,000-fold more selective for α9α10 nAChRs vs. all other molecular targets tested, including opioid and GABAB receptors. A daily s.c. dose of RgIA4 prevented chemotherapy-induced neuropathic pain in rats. In wild-type mice, oxaliplatin treatment produced cold allodynia that could be prevented by RgIA4. Additionally, in α9 KO mice, chemotherapy-induced development of cold allodynia was attenuated and the milder, temporary cold allodynia was not relieved by RgIA4. These findings establish blockade of α9-containing nAChRs as the basis for the efficacy of RgIA4, and that α9-containing nAChRs are a critical target for prevention of chronic cancer chemotherapy-induced neuropathic pain. PMID:28223528

  12. α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Regulates Airway Epithelium Differentiation by Controlling Basal Cell Proliferation

    PubMed Central

    Maouche, Kamel; Polette, Myriam; Jolly, Thomas; Medjber, Kahina; Cloëz-Tayarani, Isabelle; Changeux, Jean-Pierre; Burlet, Henriette; Terryn, Christine; Coraux, Christelle; Zahm, Jean-Marie; Birembaut, Philippe; Tournier, Jean-Marie

    2009-01-01

    Airway epithelial basal cells are known to be critical for regenerating injured epithelium and maintaining tissue homeostasis. Recent evidence suggests that the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), which is highly permeable to Ca2+, is involved in lung morphogenesis. Here, we have investigated the potential role of the α7 nAChR in the regulation of airway epithelial basal cell proliferation and the differentiation of the human airway epithelium. In vivo during fetal development and in vitro during the regeneration of the human airway epithelium, α7 nAChR expression coincides with epithelium differentiation. Inactivating α7 nAChR function in vitro increases cell proliferation during the initial steps of the epithelium regeneration, leading to epithelial alterations such as basal cell hyperplasia and squamous metaplasia, remodeling observed in many bronchopulmonary diseases. The regeneration of the airway epithelium after injury in α7−/− mice is delayed and characterized by a transient hyperplasia of basal cells. Moreover, 1-year-old α7−/− mice more frequently present basal cells hyperplasia. Modulating nAChR function or expression shows that only α7 nAChR, as opposed to heteropentameric αxβy nAChRs, controls the proliferation of human airway epithelial basal cells. These findings suggest that α7 nAChR is a key regulator of the plasticity of the human airway epithelium by controlling basal cell proliferation and differentiation pathway and is involved in airway remodeling during bronchopulmonary diseases. PMID:19808646

  13. Role of nicotinic receptors and acetylcholine in mucous cell metaplasia, hyperplasia and airway mucus formation in vitro and in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Gundavarapu, Sravanthi; Wilder, Julie A.; Mishra, Neerad C.; Rir-sima-ah, Jules; Langley, Raymond J.; Singh, Shashi P.; Saeed, Ali Imran; Jaramillo, Richard J.; Gott, Katherine M.; Peña-Philippides, Juan Carlos; Harrod, Kevin S.; McIntosh, J. Michael; Buch, Shilpa; Sopori, Mohan L.

    2012-01-01

    Background Airway mucus hypersecretion is a key pathophysiological feature in number of lung diseases. Cigarette smoke/nicotine and allergens are strong stimulators of airway mucus; however, the mechanism of mucus modulation is unclear. Objectives Characterize the pathway by which cigarette smoke/nicotine regulates airway mucus and identify agents that decrease airway mucus. Methods IL-13 and gamma-aminobutyric acid receptors (GABAARs) are implicated in airway mucus. We examined the role of IL-13 and GABAARs in nicotine-induced mucus formation in normal human bronchial epithelial (NHBE) and A549 cells, and secondhand cigarette smoke and/or ovalbumin-induced mucus formation in vivo. Results Nicotine promotes mucus formation in NHBE cells; however, the nicotine-induced mucus formation is independent of IL-13 but sensitive to the GABAAR antagonist picrotoxin (PIC). Airway epithelial cells express α7/α9/α10 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and specific inhibition or knockdown of α7- but not α9/α10-nAChRs abrogates mucus formation in response to nicotine and IL-13. Moreover, addition of acetylcholine or inhibition of its degradation increases mucus in NHBE cells. Nicotinic but not muscarinic receptor antagonists block allergen or nicotine/cigarette smoke-induced airway mucus formation in NHBE cells and/or in mouse airways. Conclusions Nicotine-induced airway mucus formation is independent of IL-13 and α7-nAChRs are critical in airway mucous cell metaplasia/hyperplasia and mucus production in response to various pro-mucoid agents, including IL-13. In the absence of nicotine, acetylcholine may be the biological ligand for α7-nAChRs to trigger airway mucus formation. α7-nAChRs are downstream of IL-13 but upstream of GABAARα2 in the MUC5AC pathway. Acetylcholine and α-7-nAChRs may serve as therapeutic targets to control airway mucus. PMID:22578901

  14. α7 and β2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Subunits Form Heteromeric Receptor Complexes that Are Expressed in the Human Cortex and Display Distinct Pharmacological Properties

    PubMed Central

    Thomsen, Morten Skøtt; Zwart, Ruud; Ursu, Daniel; Jensen, Majbrit Myrup; Pinborg, Lars Hageman; Gilmour, Gary; Wu, Jie; Sher, Emanuele; Mikkelsen, Jens Damsgaard

    2015-01-01

    The existence of α7β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) has recently been demonstrated in both the rodent and human brain. Since α7-containing nAChRs are promising drug targets for schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s disease, it is critical to determine whether α7β2 nAChRs are present in the human brain, in which brain areas, and whether they differ functionally from α7 nAChR homomers. We used α-bungarotoxin to affinity purify α7-containing nAChRs from surgically excised human temporal cortex, and found that α7 subunits co-purify with β2 subunits, indicating the presence of α7β2 nAChRs in the human brain. We validated these results by demonstrating co-purification of β2 from wild-type, but not α7 or β2 knock-out mice. The pharmacology and kinetics of human α7β2 nAChRs differed significantly from that of α7 homomers in response to nAChR agonists when expressed in Xenopus oocytes and HEK293 cells. Notably, α7β2 heteromers expressed in HEK293 cells display markedly slower rise and decay phases. These results demonstrate that α7 subunits in the human brain form heteromeric complexes with β2 subunits, and that human α7β2 nAChR heteromers respond to nAChR agonists with a unique pharmacology and kinetic profile. α7β2 nAChRs thus represent an alternative mechanism for the reported clinical efficacy of α7 nAChR ligands. PMID:26086615

  15. Phosphocholine – an agonist of metabotropic but not of ionotropic functions of α9-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Richter, K.; Mathes, V.; Fronius, M.; Althaus, M.; Hecker, A.; Krasteva-Christ, G.; Padberg, W.; Hone, A. J.; McIntosh, J. M.; Zakrzewicz, A.; Grau, V.

    2016-01-01

    We demonstrated previously that phosphocholine and phosphocholine-modified macromolecules efficiently inhibit ATP-dependent release of interleukin-1β from human and murine monocytes by a mechanism involving nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). Interleukin-1β is a potent pro-inflammatory cytokine of innate immunity that plays pivotal roles in host defence. Control of interleukin-1β release is vital as excessively high systemic levels cause life threatening inflammatory diseases. In spite of its structural similarity to acetylcholine, there are no other reports on interactions of phosphocholine with nAChR. In this study, we demonstrate that phosphocholine inhibits ion-channel function of ATP receptor P2X7 in monocytic cells via nAChR containing α9 and α10 subunits. In stark contrast to choline, phosphocholine does not evoke ion current responses in Xenopus laevis oocytes, which heterologously express functional homomeric nAChR composed of α9 subunits or heteromeric receptors containing α9 and α10 subunits. Preincubation of these oocytes with phosphocholine, however, attenuated choline-induced ion current changes, suggesting that phosphocholine may act as a silent agonist. We conclude that phophocholine activates immuno-modulatory nAChR expressed by monocytes but does not stimulate canonical ionotropic receptor functions. PMID:27349288

  16. 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.

  17. Multiple Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Subtypes in the Mouse Amygdala Regulate Affective Behaviors and Response to Social Stress.

    PubMed

    Mineur, Yann S; Fote, Gianna M; Blakeman, Sam; Cahuzac, Emma L M; Newbold, Sylvia A; Picciotto, Marina R

    2016-05-01

    Electrophysiological and neurochemical studies implicate cholinergic signaling in the basolateral amygdala (BLA) in behaviors related to stress. Both animal studies and human clinical trials suggest that drugs that alter nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) activity can affect behaviors related to mood and anxiety. Clinical studies also suggest that abnormalities in cholinergic signaling are associated with major depressive disorder, whereas pre-clinical studies have implicated both β2 subunit-containing (β2*) and α7 nAChRs in the effects of nicotine in models of anxiety- and depression-like behaviors. We therefore investigated whether nAChR signaling in the amygdala contributes to stress-mediated behaviors in mice. Local infusion of the non-competitive non-selective nAChR antagonist mecamylamine or viral-mediated downregulation of the β2 or α7 nAChR subunit in the amygdala all induced robust anxiolytic- and antidepressant-like effects in several mouse behavioral models. Further, whereas α7 nAChR subunit knockdown was somewhat more effective at decreasing anxiety-like behavior, only β2 subunit knockdown decreased resilience to social defeat stress and c-fos immunoreactivity in the BLA. In contrast, α7, but not β2, subunit knockdown effectively reversed the effect of increased ACh signaling in a mouse model of depression. These results suggest that signaling through β2* nAChRs is essential for baseline excitability of the BLA, and a decrease in signaling through β2 nAChRs alters anxiety- and depression-like behaviors even in unstressed animals. In contrast, stimulation of α7 nAChRs by acetylcholine may mediate the increased depression-like behaviors observed during the hypercholinergic state observed in depressed individuals.

  18. Molecular characterization and expression profiles of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the rice striped stem borer, Chilo suppressalis (Lepidoptera: Crambidae).

    PubMed

    Xu, Gang; Wu, Shun-Fan; Teng, Zi-Wen; Yao, Hong-Wei; Fang, Qi; Huang, Jia; Ye, Gong-Yin

    2016-02-05

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are members of the cys-loop ligand-gated ion channel (cysLGIC) superfamily, mediating fast synaptic cholinergic transmission in the central nervous system in insects. Insect nAChRs are the molecular targets of economically important insecticides, such as neonicotinoids and spinosad. Identification and characterization of the nAChR gene family in the rice striped stem borer, Chilo suppressalis, could provide beneficial information about this important receptor gene family and contribute to the investigation of the molecular modes of insecticide action and resistance for current and future chemical control strategies. We searched our C. suppressalis transcriptome database using B. mori nAChR sequences in local BLAST searches and obtained the putative nAChR subunit cDNAs via RT-PCR and RACE methods. Similar to B. mori, C. suppressalis possesses 12 nAChR subunits, including nine α-type and three β-type subunits. qRT-PCR analysis revealed the expression profiles of the nAChR subunits in various tissues, including the brain, suboesophageal ganglion, thoracic ganglion, abdominal ganglion, hemocytes, fat body, foregut, midgut, hindgut, and Malpighian tubules. Developmental expression analyses showed clear differential expression of nAChR subunits throughout the C. suppressalis life cycle. The identification of nAChR subunits in this study will provide a foundation for investigating the diverse roles played by nAChRs in the C. suppressalis and for exploring specific target sites for chemicals that control agricultural pests while sparing beneficial species. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  19. Wnt-7a induces presynaptic colocalization of alpha 7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and adenomatous polyposis coli in hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Farías, Ginny G; Vallés, Ana S; Colombres, Marcela; Godoy, Juan A; Toledo, Enrique M; Lukas, Ronald J; Barrantes, Francisco J; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C

    2007-05-16

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) contribute significantly to hippocampal function. Alpha7-nAChRs are present in presynaptic sites in hippocampal neurons and may influence transmitter release, but the factors that determine their presynaptic localization are unknown. We report here that Wnt-7a, a ligand active in the canonical Wnt signaling pathway, induces dissociation of the adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) protein from the beta-catenin cytoplasmic complex and the interaction of APC with alpha7-nAChRs in hippocampal neurons. Interestingly, Wnt-7a induces the relocalization of APC to membranes, clustering of APC in neurites, and coclustering of APC with different, presynaptic protein markers. Wnt-7a also increases the number and size of coclusters of alpha7-nAChRs and APC in presynaptic terminals. These short-term changes in alpha7-nAChRs occur in the few minutes after ligand exposure and involve translocation to the plasma membrane without affecting total receptor levels. Longer-term exposure to Wnt-7a increases nAChR alpha7 subunit levels in an APC-independent manner and increases clusters of alpha7-nAChRs in neurites via an APC-dependent process. Together, these results demonstrate that stimulation through the canonical Wnt pathway regulates the presynaptic localization of APC and alpha7-nAChRs with APC serving as an intermediary in the alpha7-nAChR relocalization process. Modulation by Wnt signaling may be essential for alpha7-nAChR expression and function in synapses.

  20. Molecular-Dynamics Simulations of ELIC a Prokaryotic Homologue of the Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Cheng, Xiaolin; Ivanov, Ivaylo N; Wang, Hailong; McCammon, Jonathan

    2009-01-01

    The ligand-gated ion channel from Erwinia chrysanthemi (ELIC) is a prokaryotic homolog of the eukaryotic nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) that responds to the binding of neurotransmitter acetylcholine and mediates fast signal transmission. ELIC is similar to the nAChR in its primary sequence and overall subunit organization, but despite their structural similarity, it is not clear whether these two ligand-gated ion channels operate in a similar manner. Further, it is not known to what extent mechanistic insights gleaned from the ELIC structure translate to eukaryotic counterparts such as the nAChR. Here we use molecular-dynamics simulations to probe the conformational dynamics and hydration of the transmembrane pore of ELIC. The results are compared with those from our previous simulation of the human ?7 nAChR. Overall, ELIC displays increased stability compared to the nAChR, whereas the two proteins exhibit remarkable similarity in their global motion and flexibility patterns. The majority of the increased stability of ELIC does not stem from the deficiency of the models used in the simulations, and but rather seems to have a structural basis. Slightly altered dynamical correlation features are also observed among several loops within the membrane region. In sharp contrast to the nAChR, ELIC is completely dehydrated from the pore center to the extracellular end throughout the simulation. Finally, the simulation of an ELIC mutant substantiates the important role of F246 on the stability, hydration and possibly function of the ELIC channel.

  1. Azemiopsin from Azemiops feae Viper Venom, a Novel Polypeptide Ligand of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor*

    PubMed Central

    Utkin, Yuri N.; Weise, Christoph; Kasheverov, Igor E.; Andreeva, Tatyana V.; Kryukova, Elena V.; Zhmak, Maxim N.; Starkov, Vladislav G.; Hoang, Ngoc Anh; Bertrand, Daniel; Ramerstorfer, Joachim; Sieghart, Werner; Thompson, Andrew J.; Lummis, Sarah C. R.; Tsetlin, Victor I.

    2012-01-01

    Azemiopsin, a novel polypeptide, was isolated from the Azemiops feae viper venom by combination of gel filtration and reverse-phase HPLC. Its amino acid sequence (DNWWPKPPHQGPRPPRPRPKP) was determined by means of Edman degradation and mass spectrometry. It consists of 21 residues and, unlike similar venom isolates, does not contain cysteine residues. According to circular dichroism measurements, this peptide adopts a β-structure. Peptide synthesis was used to verify the determined sequence and to prepare peptide in sufficient amounts to study its biological activity. Azemiopsin efficiently competed with α-bungarotoxin for binding to Torpedo nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) (IC50 0.18 ± 0.03 μm) and with lower efficiency to human α7 nAChR (IC50 22 ± 2 μm). It dose-dependently blocked acetylcholine-induced currents in Xenopus oocytes heterologously expressing human muscle-type nAChR and was more potent against the adult form (α1β1ϵδ) than the fetal form (α1β1γδ), EC50 being 0.44 ± 0.1 μm and 1.56 ± 0.37 μm, respectively. The peptide had no effect on GABAA (α1β3γ2 or α2β3γ2) receptors at a concentration up to 100 μm or on 5-HT3 receptors at a concentration up to 10 μm. Ala scanning showed that amino acid residues at positions 3–6, 8–11, and 13–14 are essential for binding to Torpedo nAChR. In biological activity azemiopsin resembles waglerin, a disulfide-containing peptide from the Tropidechis wagleri venom, shares with it a homologous C-terminal hexapeptide, but is the first natural toxin that blocks nAChRs and does not possess disulfide bridges. PMID:22613724

  2. Progesterone Modulates a Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valera, S.; Ballivet, M.; Bertrand, D.

    1992-10-01

    The major brain nicotinic acetylcholine receptor is assembled from two subunits termed α 4 and nα 1. When expressed in Xenopus oocytes, these subunits reconstitute a functional acetylcholine receptor that is inhibited by progesterone levels similar to those found in serum. In this report, we show that the steroid interacts with a site located on the extracellular part of the protein, thus confirming that inhibition by progesterone is not due to a nonspecific perturbation of the membrane bilayer or to the activation of second messengers. Because inhibition by progesterone does not require the presence of agonist, is voltage-independent, and does not alter receptor desensitization, we conclude that the steroid is not an open channel blocker. In addition, we show that progesterone is not a competitive inhibitor but may interact with the acetylcholine binding site and that its effect is independent of the ionic permeability of the receptor.

  3. Differential Contribution of Subunit Interfaces to α9α10 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Function.

    PubMed

    Boffi, Juan Carlos; Marcovich, Irina; Gill-Thind, JasKiran K; Corradi, Jeremías; Collins, Toby; Lipovsek, María Marcela; Moglie, Marcelo; Plazas, Paola V; Craig, Patricio O; Millar, Neil S; Bouzat, Cecilia; Elgoyhen, Ana Belén

    2017-03-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors can be assembled from either homomeric or heteromeric pentameric subunit combinations. At the interface of the extracellular domains of adjacent subunits lies the acetylcholine binding site, composed of a principal component provided by one subunit and a complementary component of the adjacent subunit. Compared with neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine cholinergic receptors (nAChRs) assembled from α and β subunits, the α9α10 receptor is an atypical member of the family. It is a heteromeric receptor composed only of α subunits. Whereas mammalian α9 subunits can form functional homomeric α9 receptors, α10 subunits do not generate functional channels when expressed heterologously. Hence, it has been proposed that α10 might serve as a structural subunit, much like a β subunit of heteromeric nAChRs, providing only complementary components to the agonist binding site. Here, we have made use of site-directed mutagenesis to examine the contribution of subunit interface domains to α9α10 receptors by a combination of electrophysiological and radioligand binding studies. Characterization of receptors containing Y190T mutations revealed unexpectedly that both α9 and α10 subunits equally contribute to the principal components of the α9α10 nAChR. In addition, we have shown that the introduction of a W55T mutation impairs receptor binding and function in the rat α9 subunit but not in the α10 subunit, indicating that the contribution of α9 and α10 subunits to complementary components of the ligand-binding site is nonequivalent. We conclude that this asymmetry, which is supported by molecular docking studies, results from adaptive amino acid changes acquired only during the evolution of mammalian α10 subunits.

  4. Differential Contribution of Subunit Interfaces to α9α10 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Function

    PubMed Central

    Boffi, Juan Carlos; Marcovich, Irina; Gill-Thind, JasKiran K.; Corradi, Jeremías; Collins, Toby; Lipovsek, María Marcela; Moglie, Marcelo; Plazas, Paola V.; Craig, Patricio O.; Millar, Neil S.; Bouzat, Cecilia

    2017-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors can be assembled from either homomeric or heteromeric pentameric subunit combinations. At the interface of the extracellular domains of adjacent subunits lies the acetylcholine binding site, composed of a principal component provided by one subunit and a complementary component of the adjacent subunit. Compared with neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine cholinergic receptors (nAChRs) assembled from α and β subunits, the α9α10 receptor is an atypical member of the family. It is a heteromeric receptor composed only of α subunits. Whereas mammalian α9 subunits can form functional homomeric α9 receptors, α10 subunits do not generate functional channels when expressed heterologously. Hence, it has been proposed that α10 might serve as a structural subunit, much like a β subunit of heteromeric nAChRs, providing only complementary components to the agonist binding site. Here, we have made use of site-directed mutagenesis to examine the contribution of subunit interface domains to α9α10 receptors by a combination of electrophysiological and radioligand binding studies. Characterization of receptors containing Y190T mutations revealed unexpectedly that both α9 and α10 subunits equally contribute to the principal components of the α9α10 nAChR. In addition, we have shown that the introduction of a W55T mutation impairs receptor binding and function in the rat α9 subunit but not in the α10 subunit, indicating that the contribution of α9 and α10 subunits to complementary components of the ligand-binding site is nonequivalent. We conclude that this asymmetry, which is supported by molecular docking studies, results from adaptive amino acid changes acquired only during the evolution of mammalian α10 subunits. PMID:28069778

  5. [Nicotine effects on mitochondria membrane potential: participation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors].

    PubMed

    Gergalova, G L; Skok, M V

    2011-01-01

    The effect of nicotine on the mouse liver mitochondria was studied by fluorescent flow cytometry. Mice consumed nicotine during 65 days; alternatively, nicotine was added to isolated mitochondria. Mitochondria of nicotine-treated mice had significantly lower basic levels of membrane potential and granularity as compared to those of the control group. Pre-incubation of the isolated mitochondria with nicotine prevented from dissipation of their membrane potential stimulated with 0.8 microM CaCl2 depending on the dose, and this effect was strengthened by the antagonist of alpha7 nicotinic receptors (alpha7 nAChR) methyllicaconitine. Mitochondria of mice intravenously injected with the antibodies against alpha7 nAChR demonstrated lower levels of membrane potential. Introduction of nicotine, choline, acetylcholine or synthetic alpha7 nAChR agonist PNU 282987 into the incubation medium inhibited Ca2+ accumulation in mitochondria, although the doses of agonists were too low to activate the alpha7 nAChR ion channel. It is concluded that nicotine consumption worsens the functional state of mitochondria by affecting their membrane potential and granularity, and this effect, at least in part, is mediated by alpha7 nAChR desensitization.

  6. Primary Structure of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-08-01

    quantities of starting material (for reviews of receptor, see Popot and Changeux, 1984; Stroud and Finer-Moore, 1985). This work led to the...Cloning of the Acetylcholine Receptor. Cold Spring Harbor Symp. on Quant. Biol. XLVIH: 71-78. 15. Popot , J-L. and Changeux, J-P. (1984) The

  7. miRNAome analysis of the mammalian neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor gene family.

    PubMed

    Hogan, Eric M; Casserly, Alison P; Scofield, Michael D; Mou, Zhongming; Zhao-Shea, Rubing; Johnson, Chris W; Tapper, Andrew R; Gardner, Paul D

    2014-12-01

    Nicotine binds to and activates a family of ligand-gated ion channels, neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Chronic nicotine exposure alters the expression of various nAChR subtypes, which likely contributes to nicotine dependence; however, the underlying mechanisms regulating these changes remain unclear. A growing body of evidence indicates that microRNAs (miRNAs) may be involved in nAChR regulation. Using bioinformatics, miRNA library screening, site-directed mutagenesis, and gene expression analysis, we have identified a limited number of miRNAs that functionally interact with the 3'-untranslated regions (3' UTRs) of mammalian neuronal nAChR subunit genes. In silico analyses revealed specific, evolutionarily conserved sites within the 3' UTRs through which the miRNAs regulate gene expression. Mutating these sites disrupted miRNA regulation confirming the in silico predictions. In addition, the miRNAs that target nAChR 3' UTRs are expressed in mouse brain and are regulated by chronic nicotine exposure. Furthermore, we show that expression of one of these miRNAs, miR-542-3p, is modulated by nicotine within the mesocorticolimbic reward pathway. Importantly, overexpression of miR-542-3p led to a decrease in the protein levels of its target, the nAChR β2 subunit. Bioinformatic analysis suggests that a number of the miRNAs play a general role in regulating cholinergic signaling. Our results provide evidence for a novel mode of nicotine-mediated regulation of the mammalian nAChR gene family.

  8. Presynaptic α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Enhance Hippocampal Mossy Fiber Glutamatergic Transmission via PKA Activation

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Qing

    2014-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are expressed widely in the CNS, and mediate both synaptic and perisynaptic activities of endogenous cholinergic inputs and pharmacological actions of exogenous compounds (e.g., nicotine and choline). Behavioral studies indicate that nicotine improves such cognitive functions as learning and memory. However, the mechanism of nicotine's action on cognitive function remains elusive. We performed patch-clamp recordings from hippocampal CA3 pyramidal neurons to determine the effect of nicotine on mossy fiber glutamatergic synaptic transmission. We found that nicotine in combination with NS1738, an α7 nAChR-positive allosteric modulator, strongly potentiated the amplitude of evoked EPSCs (eEPSCs), and reduced the EPSC paired-pulse ratio. The action of nicotine and NS1738 was mimicked by PNU-282987 (an α7 nAChR agonist), and was absent in α7 nAChR knock-out mice. These data indicate that activation of α7 nAChRs was both necessary and sufficient to enhance the amplitude of eEPSCs. BAPTA applied postsynaptically failed to block the action of nicotine and NS1738, suggesting again a presynaptic action of the α7 nAChRs. We also observed α7 nAChR-mediated calcium rises at mossy fiber giant terminals, indicating the presence of functional α7 nAChRs at presynaptic terminals. Furthermore, the addition of PNU-282987 enhanced action potential-dependent calcium transient at these terminals. Last, the potentiating effect of PNU-282987 on eEPSCs was abolished by inhibition of protein kinase A (PKA). Our findings indicate that activation of α7 nAChRs at presynaptic sites, via a mechanism involving PKA, plays a critical role in enhancing synaptic efficiency of hippocampal mossy fiber transmission. PMID:24381273

  9. Positive allosteric modulators as an approach to nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-targeted therapeutics: advantages and limitations.

    PubMed

    Williams, Dustin K; Wang, Jingyi; Papke, Roger L

    2011-10-15

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR), recognized targets for drug development in cognitive and neuro-degenerative disorders, are allosteric proteins with dynamic interconversions between multiple functional states. Activation of the nAChR ion channel is primarily controlled by the binding of ligands (agonists, partial agonists, competitive antagonists) at conventional agonist binding sites, but is also regulated in either negative or positive ways by the binding of ligands to other modulatory sites. In this review, we discuss models for the activation and desensitization of nAChR, and the discovery of multiple types of ligands that influence those processes in both heteromeric nAChR, such as the high-affinity nicotine receptors of the brain, and homomeric α7-type receptors. In recent years, α7 nAChRs have been identified as a potential target for therapeutic indications leading to the development of α7-selective agonists and partial agonists. However, unique properties of α7 nAChR, including low probability of channel opening and rapid desensitization, may limit the therapeutic usefulness of ligands binding exclusively to conventional agonist binding sites. New enthusiasm for the therapeutic targeting of α7 has come from the identification of α7-selective positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) that work effectively on the intrinsic factors that limit α7 ion channel activation. While these new drugs appear promising for therapeutic development, we also consider potential caveats and possible limitations for their use, including PAM-insensitive forms of desensitization and cytotoxicity issues.

  10. PMCA2 VIA PSD-95 CONTROLS CALCIUM SIGNALING BY α7-CONTAINING NICOTINIC ACETYLCHOLINE RECEPTORS ON ASPINY INTERNEURONS

    PubMed Central

    Gomez-Varela, David; Schmidt, Manuela; Schoellerman, Jeff; Peters, Eric C.; Berg, Darwin K.

    2012-01-01

    Local control of calcium concentration within neurons is critical for signaling and regulation of synaptic communication in neural circuits. How local control can be achieved in the absence of physical compartmentalization is poorly understood. Challenging examples are provided by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors that contain α7 nicotinic receptor subunits (α7-nAChRs). These receptors are highly permeable to calcium and are concentrated on aspiny dendrites of interneurons which lack obvious physical compartments for constraining calcium diffusion. Using functional proteomics on rat brain, we show that α7-nAChRs are associated with the membrane calcium pump PMCA2. Analysis of α7-nAChR function in hippocampal interneurons in culture shows that PMCA2 activity limits the duration of calcium elevations produced by the receptors. Unexpectedly, PMCA2 inhibition triggers rapid calcium-dependent loss of α7-nAChR clusters. This extreme regulatory response is mediated by CaMKII, involves proteasome activity, depends on the second intracellular loop of α7-nAChR subunits, and is specific in that it does not alter two other classes of calcium-permeable ionotropic receptors on the same neurons. A critical link is provided by the scaffold protein PSD-95, which is associated with α7-nAChRs and constrains their mobility as revealed by single-particle tracking on neurons. The PSD-95 link is required for PMCA2-mediated removal of α7-nAChR clusters. This three-component combination of PMCA2/PSD-95/α7-nAChR offers a novel mechanism for tight control of calcium dynamics in neurons. PMID:22593058

  11. BDNF up-regulates alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor levels on subpopulations of hippocampal interneurons.

    PubMed

    Massey, Kerri A; Zago, Wagner M; Berg, Darwin K

    2006-12-01

    In the hippocampus, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) regulates a number of synaptic components. Among these are nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing alpha7 subunits (alpha7-nAChRs), which are interesting because of their relative abundance in the hippocampus and their high relative calcium permeability. We show here that BDNF elevates surface and intracellular pools of alpha7-nAChRs on cultured hippocampal neurons and that glutamatergic activity is both necessary and sufficient for the effect. Blocking transmission through NMDA receptors with APV blocked the BDNF effect; increasing spontaneous excitatory activity with the GABA(A) receptor antagonist bicuculline replicated the BDNF effect. BDNF antibodies blocked the BDNF-mediated increase but not the bicuculline one, consistent with enhanced glutamatergic activity acting downstream from BDNF. Increased alpha7-nAChR clusters were most prominent on interneuron subtypes known to directly innervate excitatory neurons. The results suggest that BDNF, acting through glutamatergic transmission, can modulate hippocampal output in part by controlling alpha7-nAChR levels.

  12. Heterologous expression and nonsense suppression provide insights into agonist behavior at α6β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Post, Michael R; Limapichat, Walrati; Lester, Henry A; Dougherty, Dennis A

    2015-10-01

    The α6-containing subtypes of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) are localized to presynaptic terminals of the dopaminergic pathways of the central nervous system. Selective ligands for these nAChRs are potentially useful in both Parkinson's disease and addiction. For these and other goals, it is important to distinguish the binding behavior of agonists at the α6-β2 binding site versus other subtypes. To study this problem, we apply nonsense suppression-based non-canonical amino acid mutagenesis. We report a combination of four mutations in α6β2 that yield high-level heterologous expression in Xenopus oocytes. By varying mRNA injection ratios, two populations were observed with unique characteristics, likely due to differing stoichiometries. Responses to nine known nAChR agonists were analyzed at the receptor, and their corresponding EC50 values and efficacies are reported. The system is compatible with nonsense suppression, allowing structure-function studies between Trp149 - a conserved residue on loop B found to make a cation-π interaction at several nAChR subtypes - and several agonists. These studies reveal that acetylcholine forms a strong cation-π interaction with the conserved tryptophan, while nicotine and TC299423 do not, suggesting a unique pharmacology for the α6β2 nAChR.

  13. Is the acetylcholine receptor a rabies virus receptor?

    PubMed

    Lentz, T L; Burrage, T G; Smith, A L; Crick, J; Tignor, G H

    1982-01-08

    Rabies virus was found on mouse diaphragms and on cultured chick myotubes in a distribution coinciding with that of the acetylcholine receptor. Treatment of the myotubes with alpha-bungarotoxin and d-tubocurarine before the addition of the virus reduced the number of myotubes that became infected with rabies virus. These findings together suggest that acetylcholine receptors may serve as receptors for rabies virus. The binding of virus to acetylcholine receptors, which are present in high density at the neuromuscular junction, would provide a mechanism whereby the virus could be locally concentrated at sites in proximity to peripheral nerves facilitating subsequent uptake and transfer to the central nervous system.

  14. Potentiation of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors via an allosteric transmembrane site.

    PubMed

    Young, Gareth T; Zwart, Ruud; Walker, Alison S; Sher, Emanuele; Millar, Neil S

    2008-09-23

    Positive allosteric modulators of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have attracted considerable interest as potential tools for the treatment of neurological and psychiatric disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. However, despite the potential therapeutic usefulness of these compounds, little is known about their mechanism of action. Here, we have examined two allosteric potentiators of alpha7 nAChRs (PNU-120596 and LY-2087101). From studies with a series of subunit chimeras, we have identified the transmembrane regions of alpha7 as being critical in facilitating potentiation of agonist-evoked responses. Furthermore, we have identified five transmembrane amino acids that, when mutated, significantly reduce potentiation of alpha7 nAChRs. The amino acids we have identified are located within the alpha-helical transmembrane domains TM1 (S222 and A225), TM2 (M253), and TM4 (F455 and C459). Mutation of either A225 or M253 individually have particularly profound effects, reducing potentiation of EC(20) concentrations of acetylcholine to a tenth of the level seen with wild-type alpha7. Reference to homology models of the alpha7 nAChR, based on the 4A structure of the Torpedo nAChR, indicates that the side chains of all five amino acids point toward an intrasubunit cavity located between the four alpha-helical transmembrane domains. Computer docking simulations predict that the allosteric compounds such as PNU-120596 and LY-2087101 may bind within this intrasubunit cavity, much as neurosteroids and volatile anesthetics are thought to interact with GABA(A) and glycine receptors. Our findings suggest that this is a conserved modulatory allosteric site within neurotransmitter-gated ion channels.

  15. Cross-reactivity of acid-sensing ion channel and Na+–H+ exchanger antagonists with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Santos-Torres, Julio; Ślimak, Marta A; Auer, Sebastian; Ibañez-Tallon, Inés

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are widely distributed throughout the mammalian central and peripheral nervous systems, where they contribute to neuronal excitability and synaptic communication. It has been reported that nAChRs are modulated by BK channels and that BK channels, in turn, are inhibited by acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs). Here we investigate the possible functional interaction between these channels in medial habenula (MHb) neurones. We report that selective antagonists of large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels and ASIC1a channels, paxilline and psalmotoxin 1, respectively, did not induce detectable changes in nicotine-evoked currents. In contrast, the non-selective ASIC and Na+–H+ exchanger (NHE1) antagonists, amiloride and its analogues, suppressed nicotine-evoked responses in MHb neurones of wild-type and ASIC2 null mice, excluding a possible involvement of ASIC2 in the nAChR inhibition by amiloride. Zoniporide, a more selective inhibitor of NHE1, reversibly inhibited α3β4-, α7- and α4-containing (*) nAChRs in Xenopus oocytes and in brain slices, as well as in PS120 cells deficient in NHE1 and virally transduced with nAChRs, suggesting a generalized effect of zoniporide in most neuronal nAChR subtypes. Independently from nAChR antagonism, zoniporide profoundly blocked synaptic transmission onto MHb neurones without affecting glutamatergic and GABA receptors. Taken together, these results indicate that amiloride and zoniporide, which are clinically used to treat hypertension and cardiovascular disease, have an inhibitory effect on neuronal nAChRs when used experimentally at high doses. The possible cross-reactivity of these compounds with nAChRs in vivo will require further investigation. PMID:21911609

  16. Novel pyridyl ring C5 substituted analogues of epibatidine and 3-(1-methyl-2(S)-pyrrolidinylmethoxy)pyridine (A-84543) as highly selective agents for neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing beta2 subunits.

    PubMed

    Wei, Zhi-Liang; Xiao, Yingxian; Yuan, Hongbin; Baydyuk, Maryna; Petukhov, Pavel A; Musachio, John L; Kellar, Kenneth J; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2005-03-24

    Introduction of a hydrophobic or hydrogen-bonding alkynyl group into the C5 position of the pyridyl ring of epibatidine and A-84543 significantly increased the selectivity for neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) containing beta2 subunits over nAChRs containing beta4 subunits (K(i) ratio up to 92000-fold). Our data indicate that the extracellular domains of the nAChRs are sufficiently different to allow for the design of novel ligands with high affinity and selectivity for the nAChR subtypes.

  17. The β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit differentially influences ethanol behavioral effects in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Dawson, Anton; Miles, Micheal F; Damaj, M Imad

    2013-03-01

    The high co-morbidity between alcohol (ethanol) and nicotine abuse suggests that nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), thought to underlie nicotine dependence, may also be involved in alcohol dependence. The β2* nAChR subtype serves as a potential interface for these interactions since they are the principle mediators of nicotine dependence and have recently been shown to modulate some acute responses to ethanol. Therefore, the aim of this study was to more fully characterize the role of β2* nAChRs in ethanol-responsive behaviors in mice after acute exposure to the drug. We conducted a battery of tests in mice lacking the β2* coding gene (Chrnb2) or pretreated with a selective β2* nAChR antagonist for a range of ethanol-induced behaviors including locomotor depression, hypothermia, hypnosis, and anxiolysis. We also tested the effect of deletion on voluntary escalated ethanol consumption in an intermittent access two-bottle choice paradigm to determine the extent of these effects on drinking behavior. Our results showed that antagonism of β2* nAChRs modulated some acute behaviors, namely by reducing recovery time from hypnosis and enhancing the anxiolytic-like response produced by acute ethanol in mice. Chrnb2 deletion had no effect on ethanol drinking behavior, however. We provide further evidence that β2* nAChRs have a measurable role in mediating specific behavioral effects induced by acute ethanol exposure without affecting drinking behavior directly. We conclude that these receptors, along with being key components in nicotine dependence, may also present viable candidates in the discovery of the molecular underpinnings of alcohol dependence.

  18. 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.

  19. Subunit Interfaces Contribute Differently to Activation and Allosteric Modulation of Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Short, Caitlin A.; Cao, Angela T.; Wingfield, Molly A.; Doers, Matthew E.; Jobe, Emily M.; Wang, Nan; Levandoski, Mark M.

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are widely distributed in the nervous system and are implicated in many normal and pathological processes. The structural determinants of allostery in nAChRs are not well understood. One class of nAChR allosteric modulators, including the small molecule morantel (Mor), acts from a site that is structurally homologous to the canonical agonist site but exists in the β(+)/α(–) subunit interface. We hypothesized that all nAChR subunits move with respect to each other during channel activation and allosteric modulation. We therefore studied five pairs of residues predicted to span the interfaces of α3β2 receptors, one at the agonist interface and four at the modulator interface. Substituting cysteines in these positions, we used disulfide trapping to perturb receptor function. The pair α3Y168-β2D190, involving the C loop region of the β2 subunit, mediates modulation and agonist activation, because evoked currents were reduced up to 50% following oxidation (H2O2) treatment. The pair α3S125-β2Q39, below the canonical site, is also involved in channel activation, in accord with previous studies of the muscle-type receptor; however, the pair is differentially sensitive to ACh activation and Mor modulation (currents decreased 60% and 80%, respectively). The pairs α3Q37-β2A127 and α3E173-β2R46, both in the non-canonical interface, showed increased currents following oxidation, suggesting that subunit movements are not symmetrical. Together, our results from disulfide trapping and further mutation analysis indicate that subunit interface movement is important for allosteric modulation of nAChRs, but that the two types of interfaces contribute unequally to receptor activation. PMID:25486620

  20. Influence of subunit composition on desensitization of neuronal acetylcholine receptors at low concentrations of nicotine.

    PubMed

    Fenster, C P; Rains, M F; Noerager, B; Quick, M W; Lester, R A

    1997-08-01

    The influence of alpha and beta subunits on the properties of nicotine-induced activation and desensitization of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed in Xenopus oocytes was examined. Receptors containing alpha4 subunits were more sensitive to activation by nicotine than alpha3-containing receptors. At low concentrations of nicotine, nAChRs containing beta2 subunits reached near-maximal desensitization more rapidly than beta4-containing receptors. The concentration of nicotine producing half-maximal desensitization was influenced by the particular alpha subunit expressed; similar to results for activation, alpha4-containing receptors were more sensitive to desensitizing levels of nicotine than alpha3-containing receptors. The alpha subunit also influenced the rate of recovery from desensitization; this rate was approximately inversely proportional to the apparent nicotine affinity for the desensitized state. The homomeric alpha7 receptor showed the lowest sensitivity to nicotine for both activation and desensitization; alpha7 nAChRs also demonstrated the fastest desensitization kinetics. These subunit-dependent properties remained in the presence of external calcium, although subtle, receptor subtype-specific effects on both the apparent affinities for activation and desensitization and the desensitization kinetics were noted. These data imply that the subunit composition of various nAChRs determines the degree to which receptors are desensitized and/or activated by tobacco-related levels of nicotine. The subtype-specific balance between receptor activation and desensitization should be considered important when the cellular and behavioral actions of nicotine are interpreted.

  1. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing the α4 subunit are critical for the nicotine-induced reduction of acute voluntary ethanol consumption.

    PubMed

    Hendrickson, Linzy M; Gardner, Paul; Tapper, Andrew R

    2011-01-01

    Recently, we investigated the molecular mechanisms of the smoking cessation drug varenicline, a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonist, in its ability to decrease voluntary ethanol intake in mice. Previous to our study, other labs had shown that this drug can decrease ethanol consumption and seeking in rat models of ethanol intake. Although varenicline was designed to be a high affinity partial agonist of nAChRs containing the α4 and β2 subunits (designated as α4β2*), at higher concentrations it can also act upon α3β2*, α6*, α3β4* and α7 nAChRs. Therefore, to further elucidate the nAChR subtype responsible for varenicline-induced reduction of ethanol consumption, we utilized a pharmacological approach in combination with two complimentary nAChR genetic mouse models, a knock-out line that does not express the α4 subunit (α4 KO) and another line that expresses α4* nAChRs hypersensitive to agonist (the Leu9'Ala line). We found that activation of α4* nAChRs was necessary and sufficient for varenicline-induced reduction of alcohol consumption. Consistent with this result, here we show that a more efficacious nAChR agonist, nicotine, also decreased voluntary ethanol intake, and that α4* nAChRs are critical for this reduction.

  2. The combination of memantine and galantamine improves cognition in rats: The synergistic role of the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine and NMDA receptors.

    PubMed

    Nikiforuk, Agnieszka; Potasiewicz, Agnieszka; Kos, Tomasz; Popik, Piotr

    2016-10-15

    The combination of memantine and acetylcholinesterase inhibitors (AChEIs) is used as a therapeutic strategy to improve cognition in Alzheimer's disease. Among AChEIs, galantamine, which is also a positive allosteric modulator (PAM) of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), including α7-nAChRs, may be particularly beneficial. The α7-nAChR is involved in interactions between the cholinergic and glutamatergic systems. In the present study, we investigated the potential role of α7-nAChRs in the pro-cognitive effects of this drug combination. To this aim, cognitive performance in rats was assessed using the attentional set shifting task (ASST) and novel object recognition task (NORT). Co-administration of inactive doses of memantine with galantamine facilitated the rats' set-shifting performance and reversed delay-induced deficits in object recognition. These effects were blocked by the α7-nAChR antagonist methyllycaconitine, suggesting that the observed cognitive enhancement is α7-nAChR dependent. Moreover, combined administration of memantine with inactive doses of selective α7-nAChRs PAMs, CCMI and PNU-120596, also improved ASST and NORT performance in a methyllycaconitine-dependent manner. Stimulation of α7-nAChRs may underlie the pro-cognitive effects of combining memantine and galantamine. Our results suggest that memantine, when given with enhancers of α7-nAChRs, may represent an effective strategy for cognitive improvement.

  3. Gating of Long-Term Potentiation by Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors at the Cerebellum Input Stage

    PubMed Central

    Prestori, Francesca; Bonardi, Claudia; Mapelli, Lisa; Lombardo, Paola; Goselink, Rianne; De Stefano, Maria Egle; Gandolfi, Daniela; Mapelli, Jonathan; Bertrand, Daniel; Schonewille, Martijn; De Zeeuw, Chris; D’Angelo, Egidio

    2013-01-01

    The brain needs mechanisms able to correlate plastic changes with local circuit activity and internal functional states. At the cerebellum input stage, uncontrolled induction of long-term potentiation or depression (LTP or LTD) between mossy fibres and granule cells can saturate synaptic capacity and impair cerebellar functioning, which suggests that neuromodulators are required to gate plasticity processes. Cholinergic systems innervating the cerebellum are thought to enhance procedural learning and memory. Here we show that a specific subtype of acetylcholine receptors, the α7-nAChRs, are distributed both in cerebellar mossy fibre terminals and granule cell dendrites and contribute substantially to synaptic regulation. Selective α7-nAChR activation enhances the postsynaptic calcium increase, allowing weak mossy fibre bursts, which would otherwise cause LTD, to generate robust LTP. The local microperfusion of α7-nAChR agonists could also lead to in vivo switching of LTD to LTP following sensory stimulation of the whisker pad. In the cerebellar flocculus, α7-nAChR pharmacological activation impaired vestibulo-ocular-reflex adaptation, probably because LTP was saturated, preventing the fine adjustment of synaptic weights. These results show that gating mechanisms mediated by specific subtypes of nicotinic receptors are required to control the LTD/LTP balance at the mossy fibre-granule cell relay in order to regulate cerebellar plasticity and behavioural adaptation. PMID:23741401

  4. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in dorsal root ganglion neurons include the α6β4* subtype.

    PubMed

    Hone, Arik J; Meyer, Erin L; McIntyre, Melissa; McIntosh, J Michael

    2012-02-01

    The α6-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have recently been implicated in diseases of the central nervous system (CNS), including Parkinson's disease and substance abuse. In contrast, little is known about the role of α6* nAChRs in the peripheral nervous system (where the asterisk denotes the possible presence of additional subunits). Dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons are known to express nAChRs with a pharmacology consistent with an α7, α3β4*, and α4β2* composition. Here we present evidence that DRG neurons also express α6* nAChRs. We used RT-PCR to show the presence of α6 subunit transcripts and patch-clamp electrophysiology together with subtype-selective α-conotoxins to pharmacologically characterize the nAChRs in rat DRG neurons. α-Conotoxin BuIA (500 nM) blocked acetylcholine-gated currents (I(ACh)) by 90.3 ± 3.0%; the recovery from blockade was very slow, indicating a predominance of α(x)β4* nAChRs. Perfusion with either 300 nM BuIA[T5A;P6O] or 200 nM MII[E11A], α-conotoxins that target the α6β4* subtype, blocked I(ACh) by 49.3 ± 5 and 46.7 ± 8%, respectively. In these neurons, I(ACh) was relatively insensitive to 200 nM ArIB[V11L;V16D] (9.4±2.0% blockade) or 500 nM PnIA (23.0±4% blockade), α-conotoxins that target α7 and α3β2*/α6β2* nAChRs, respectively. We conclude that α6β4* nAChRs are among the subtypes expressed by DRG, and to our knowledge, this is the first demonstration of α6β4* in neurons outside the CNS.

  5. The Novel α7β2-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Subtype Is Expressed in Mouse and Human Basal Forebrain: Biochemical and Pharmacological Characterization

    PubMed Central

    Moretti, Milena; Zoli, Michele; George, Andrew A.; Lukas, Ronald J.; Pistillo, Francesco; Maskos, Uwe

    2014-01-01

    We examined α7β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7β2-nAChR) expression in mammalian brain and compared pharmacological profiles of homomeric α7-nAChRs and α7β2-nAChRs. α-Bungarotoxin affinity purification or immunoprecipitation with anti-α7 subunit antibodies (Abs) was used to isolate nAChRs containing α7 subunits from mouse or human brain samples. α7β2-nAChRs were detected in forebrain, but not other tested regions, from both species, based on Western blot analysis of isolates using β2 subunit–specific Abs. Ab specificity was confirmed in control studies using subunit-null mutant mice or cell lines heterologously expressing specific human nAChR subtypes and subunits. Functional expression in Xenopus oocytes of concatenated pentameric (α7)5-, (α7)4(β2)1-, and (α7)3(β2)2-nAChRs was confirmed using two-electrode voltage clamp recording of responses to nicotinic ligands. Importantly, pharmacological profiles were indistinguishable for concatenated (α7)5-nAChRs or for homomeric α7-nAChRs constituted from unlinked α7 subunits. Pharmacological profiles were similar for (α7)5-, (α7)4(β2)1-, and (α7)3(β2)2-nAChRs except for diminished efficacy of nicotine (normalized to acetylcholine efficacy) at α7β2- versus α7-nAChRs. This study represents the first direct confirmation of α7β2-nAChR expression in human and mouse forebrain, supporting previous mouse studies that suggested relevance of α7β2-nAChRs in Alzheimer disease etiopathogenesis. These data also indicate that α7β2-nAChR subunit isoforms with different α7/β2 subunit ratios have similar pharmacological profiles to each other and to α7 homopentameric nAChRs. This supports the hypothesis that α7β2-nAChR agonist activation predominantly or entirely reflects binding to α7/α7 subunit interface sites. PMID:25002271

  6. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from chick optic lobe.

    PubMed Central

    Norman, R I; Mehraban, F; Barnard, E A; Dolly, J O

    1982-01-01

    An alpha-bungarotoxin-sensitive nicotinic cholinergic receptor from chick optic lobe has been completely purified. Its standard sedimentation coefficient is 9.1 S. The value near 12 S reported for the related component from other brain regions can be reproduced when the initial extraction is by Triton X-100 (rather than Lubrol PX), but other protein is then complexed with it. A single subunit of apparent molecular weight 54,000 is detected, and this subunit is specifically labeled by bromo-[3H]acetylcholine, but only after disulfide reduction. The same size subunit likewise is labeled in the protein (purified similarly) from the rest of the chick brain which can also bind alpha-bungarotoxin and nicotinic ligands. Immunological crossreactivity is demonstrated between both of these proteins with an antiserum to pure acetylcholine receptor from skeletal muscle. The acetylcholine receptor from chick optic lobe and the alpha-bungarotoxin-binding protein from the rest of the brain appear similar or identical by a series of criteria and are related to (but with differences from) peripheral acetylcholine receptors. Images PMID:6175967

  7. Turnover of Acetylcholine Receptors: Mechanisms of Regulation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-12-01

    ME, Whittingham S, and Duane DD (1976) Antibody to acetylcholine receptor in myasthenia gravis : prevalance, clinical correlates and diagnostic value...transferred to nitorcellulose. Proc Natl Acad Sci 77:5201-5205. Weinberg CB and Hall ZW (1979) Antibodies from patients with myasthenia gravis recognize

  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. Effects of lipid-analog detergent solubilization on the functionality and lipidic cubic phase mobility of the Torpedo californica nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Padilla-Morales, Luis F; Morales-Pérez, Claudio L; De La Cruz-Rivera, Pamela C; Asmar-Rovira, Guillermo; Báez-Pagán, Carlos A; Quesada, Orestes; Lasalde-Dominicci, José A

    2011-10-01

    Over the past three decades, the Torpedo californica nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) has been one of the most extensively studied membrane protein systems. However, the effects of detergent solubilization on nAChR stability and function are poorly understood. The use of lipid-analog detergents for nAChR solubilization has been shown to preserve receptor stability and functionality. The present study used lipid-analog detergents from phospholipid-analog and cholesterol-analog detergent families for solubilization and affinity purification of the receptor and probed nAChR ion channel function using planar lipid bilayers (PLBs) and stability using analytical size exclusion chromatography (A-SEC) in the detergent-solubilized state. We also examined receptor mobility on the lipidic cubic phase (LCP) by measuring the nAChR mobile fraction and diffusion coefficient through fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) experiments using lipid-analog and non-lipid-analog detergents. Our results show that it is possible to isolate stable and functional nAChRs using lipid-analog detergents, with characteristic ion channel currents in PLBs and minimal aggregation as observed in A-SEC. Furthermore, fractional mobility and diffusion coefficient values observed in FRAP experiments were similar to the values observed for these parameters in the recently LCP-crystallized β(2)-adrenergic receptor. The overall results show that phospholipid-analog detergents with 16 carbon acyl-chains support nAChR stability, functionality and LCP mobility.

  10. Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors and Epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Bertrand, Daniel

    2002-01-01

    The identification of a genetically transmissible form of epilepsy that is associated with a mutation in CHRNA4, the gene that encodes the α4 subunit of the high-affinity nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, was the first demonstration that an alteration in a ligand-gated ion channel can cause seizures. Since then, nine mutations have been found, and analysis of their physiologic properties has revealed that all of them enhance receptor function. PMID:15309115

  11. External Imaging of Cerebral Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eckelman, William C.; Reba, Richard C.; Rzeszotarski, Waclaw J.; Gibson, Raymond E.; Hill, Thomas; Holman, B. Leonard; Budinger, Thomas; Conklin, James J.; Eng, Robert; Grissom, Michael P.

    1984-01-01

    A radioiodinated ligand that binds to muscarinic acetylcholine receptors was shown to distribute in the brain by a receptor-mediated process. With single-photon-emission imaging techniques, radioactivity was detected in the cerebrum but not in the cerebellum, whereas with a flow-limited radiotracer, radioactivity was detected in cerebrum and cerebellum. Single-photon-emission computed tomography showed good definition of the caudate putamen and cortex in man.

  12. External imaging of cerebral muscarinic acetylcholine receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Eckelman, W.C.; Reba, R.C.; Rzeszotarski, W.J.; Gibson, R.E.; Hill, T.; Holman, B.L.; Budinger, T.; Conklin, J.J.; Eng, R.; Grissom, M.P.

    1984-01-20

    A radioiodinated ligand that binds to muscarinic acetylcholine receptors was shown to distribute in the brain by a receptor-mediated process. With single-photon-emission imaging techniques, radioactivity was detected in the cerebrum but not in the cerebellum, whereas with a flow-limited radiotracer, radioactivity was detected in cerebrum and cerebellum. Single-photon-emission computed tomography showed good definition of the caudate putamen and cortex in man.

  13. Electrophysiological perspectives on the therapeutic use of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor partial agonists.

    PubMed

    Papke, Roger L; Trocmé-Thibierge, Caryn; Guendisch, Daniela; Al Rubaiy, Shehd Abdullah Abbas; Bloom, Stephen A

    2011-05-01

    Partial agonist therapies rely variously on two hypotheses: the partial agonists have their effects through chronic low-level receptor activation or the partial agonists work by decreasing the effects of endogenous or exogenous full agonists. The relative significance of these activities probably depends on whether acute or chronic effects are considered. We studied nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes to test a model for the acute interactions between acetylcholine (ACh) and weak partial agonists. Data were best-fit to a basic competition model that included an additional factor for noncompetitive inhibition. Partial agonist effects were compared with the nAChR antagonist bupropion in prolonged bath application experiments that were designed to mimic prolonged drug exposure typical of therapeutic drug delivery. A primary effect of prolonged application of nicotine was to decrease the response of all nAChR subtypes to acute applications of ACh. In addition, nicotine, cytisine, and varenicline produced detectable steady-state activation of α4β2* [(α4)(2)(β2)(3), (α4)(3)(β2)(2), and (α4)(2)(β2)(2)α5)] receptor subtypes that was not seen with other test compounds. Partial agonists produced no detectable steady-state activation of α7 nAChR, but seemed to show small potentiation of ACh-evoked responses; however, "run-up" of α7 ACh responses was also sometimes observed under control conditions. Potential off-target effects of the partial agonists therefore included the modulation of α7 responses by α4β2 partial agonists and decreases in α4β2* responses by α7-selective agonists. These data indicate the dual effects expected for α4β2* partial agonists and provide models and insights for utility of partial agonists in therapeutic development.

  14. 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

  15. Spontaneous opening of the acetylcholine receptor channel in developing muscle cells from normal and dystrophic mice

    SciTech Connect

    Franco-Obregon, A.; Lansman, J.B.

    1995-12-31

    Single-channel activity was recorded from cell-attached patches on skeletal muscle cells isolated from wild-type mice and from mice carrying the dy or mdx mutations. Spontaneous openings of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor channel (nAChR) were detected in virtually all recordings from either 4v/dy or dyl + myotubes. but only infrequently from wild-type or mdx myotubes. Spontaneous openings were also present in most recordings from undifferentiated myoblasts from all of the mouse strains studied. The biophysical properties of the spontaneous activity were similar to those of the embryonic form of the nAChR in the presence of acetylcholine (ACh). Examination of the single-channel currents evoked by low concentrations of ACh showed a reduced sensitivity to the agonist in the dystrophic dy and mdx myotubes. but not in wild- type myotubes. The results suggest that alterations in nAChR function are associated with the pathogenesis of muscular dystrophy in the dy mouse.

  16. Prenatal Exposure to Nicotine and Childhood Asthma: Role of Nicotine Acetylcholine Receptors, Neuropeptides and Fibronectin Expression in Lung

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-12-01

    acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) that are expressed by lung cells termed fibroblasts and pulmonary neuroendocrine cells ( PNEC ). In fibroblasts, this...interaction triggers the exaggerated expression of a connective tissue protein called fibronectin. In PNECs , nicotine stimulates cell growth and the...nAChRs) expressed by fibroblasts and pulmonary neuroendocrine cells ( PNECs ), among other embryonic lung cells. In fibroblasts, this interaction triggers

  17. Competitive inhibition of the nondepolarizing muscle relaxant rocuronium on nicotinic acetylcholine receptor channels in the rat superior cervical ganglia.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Chengmi; Wang, Zhenmeng; Zhang, Jinmin; Qiu, Haibo; Sun, Yuming; Yang, Liqun; Wu, Feixiang; Zheng, Jijian; Yu, Weifeng

    2014-05-01

    A number of case reports now indicate that rocuronium can induce a number of serious side effects. We hypothesized that these side effects might be mediated by the inhibition of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) at superior cervical ganglion (SCG) neurons. Conventional patch clamp recordings were used to study the effects of rocuronium on nAChR currents from enzymatically dissociated rat SCG neurons. We found that ACh induced a peak transient inward current in rat SCG neurons. Additionally, rocuronium suppressed the peak ACh-evoked currents in rat SCG neurons in a concentration-dependent and competitive manner, and it increased the extent of desensitization of nAChRs. The inhibitory rate of rocuronium on nAChR currents did not change significantly at membrane potentials between -70 and -20 mV, suggesting that this inhibition was voltage independent. Lastly, rocuronium preapplication enhanced its inhibitory effect, indicating that this drug might prefer to act on the closed state of nAChR channels. In conclusion, rocuronium, at clinically relevant concentrations, directly inhibits nAChRs at the SCG by interacting with both opened and closed states. This inhibition is competitive, dose dependent, and voltage independent. Blockade of synaptic transmission in the sympathetic ganglia by rocuronium might have potentially inhibitory effects on the cardiovascular system.

  18. Glutamatergic contributions to nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist-evoked cholinergic transients in the prefrontal cortex.

    PubMed

    Parikh, Vinay; Man, Kingson; Decker, Michael W; Sarter, Martin

    2008-04-02

    Because modulation of cortical cholinergic neurotransmission has been hypothesized to represent a necessary mechanism mediating the beneficial cognitive effects of nicotine and nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtype-selective agonists, we used choline-sensitive microelectrodes for the real-time measurement of ACh release in vivo, to characterize cholinergic transients evoked by nicotine and the alpha4beta2*-selective nAChR partial agonist 2-methyl-3-(2-(S)-pyrrolindinylmethoxy)pyridine dihydrochloride (ABT-089), a clinically effective cognition enhancer. In terms of cholinergic signal amplitudes, ABT-089 was significantly more potent than nicotine in evoking ACh cholinergic transients. Moreover, cholinergic signals evoked by ABT-089 were characterized by faster signal rise time and decay rate. The nAChR antagonist mecamylamine attenuated the cholinergic signals evoked by either compound. Cholinergic signals evoked by ABT-089 were more efficaciously attenuated by the relatively beta2*-selective nAChR antagonist dihydro-beta-erythroidine. The alpha7 antagonist methyllycaconitine did not affect choline signal amplitudes but partly attenuated the relatively slow decay rate of nicotine-evoked cholinergic signals. Furthermore, the AMPA receptor antagonist DNQX as well as the NMDA receptor antagonist APV more potently attenuated cholinergic signals evoked by ABT-089. Using glutamate-sensitive microelectrodes to measure glutamatergic transients, ABT-089 was more potent than nicotine in evoking glutamate release. Glutamatergic signals were highly sensitive to tetrodotoxin-induced blockade of voltage-regulated sodium channels. Together, the present evidence indicates that compared with nicotine, ABT-089 evokes more potent and sharper cholinergic transients in prefrontal cortex. Glutamatergic mechanisms necessarily mediate the cholinergic effects of nAChR agonists in the prefrontal cortex.

  19. Spinal alpha3beta2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors tonically inhibit the transmission of nociceptive mechanical stimuli.

    PubMed

    Young, Tracey; Wittenauer, Shannon; McIntosh, J Michael; Vincler, Michelle

    2008-09-10

    The presence of non-alpha4beta2, non-alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) in the rat spinal cord has been suggested previously, but the identity of these nAChRs had not been shown. Intrathecal administration of the alpha3beta2*/alpha6beta2* selective alpha-conotoxin MII (alpha-CTX MII) dose- and time-dependently reduced paw withdrawal thresholds to mechanical pressure in normal rats. The pronociceptive effect of alpha-CTX MII was partially blocked by NMDA receptor antagonism and lost completely following ablation of C-fibers. The effect of spinal nerve ligation on alpha-CTX MII-induced mechanical hypersensitivity was also assessed. Sensitivity was lost in the hind paw ipsilateral to spinal nerve ligation, but maintained in the contralateral hind paw at control levels. Radioligand binding in spinal cord membranes revealed high and low affinity alpha-CTX MII binding sites. Spinal nerve ligation did not significantly alter alpha-CTX MII binding ipsilateral to ligation. Finally, no evidence for the presence of alpha6-containing nAChRs was identified. The results of these studies show the presence of 2 populations of alpha-CTX MII-sensitive nAChRs containing the alpha3 and beta2, but not the alpha6, subunits in the rat spinal cord that function to inhibit the transmission of nociceptive mechanical stimuli via inhibiting the release of glutamate from C-fibers. Spinal nerve ligation produces a unilateral loss of alpha-CTX MII-induced mechanical hypersensitivity without altering alpha-CTX MII binding sites. Our data support a peripheral injury-induced loss of a cholinergic inhibitory tone at spinal alpha3beta2* nAChRs, without the loss of the receptors themselves, which may contribute to mechanical hypersensitivity following spinal nerve ligation.

  20. Spinal α3β2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors tonically inhibit the transmission of nociceptive mechanical stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Young, Tracey; Wittenauer, Shannon; McIntosh, J. Michael; Vincler, Michelle

    2008-01-01

    The presence of non-α4β2, non-α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) in the rat spinal cord has been suggested previously, but the identity of these nAChRs had not been shown. Intrathecal administration of the α3β2*/α6β2* selective α-conotoxin MII (α-CTX MII) dose- and time-dependently reduced paw withdrawal thresholds to mechanical pressure in normal rats. The pronociceptive effect of α-CTX MII was partially blocked by NMDA receptor antagonism and lost completely following ablation of C-fibers. The effect of spinal nerve ligation on α-CTX MII-induced mechanical hypersensitivity was also assessed. Sensitivity was lost in the hind paw ipsilateral to spinal nerve ligation, but maintained in the contralateral hind paw at control levels.. Radioligand binding in spinal cord membranes revealed high and low affinity α-CTX MII binding sites. Spinal nerve ligation did not significantly alter α-CTX MII binding ipsilateral to ligation. Finally, no evidence for the presence of α6-containing nAChRs was identified. The results of these studies show the presence of 2 populations of α-CTX MII-sensitive nAChRs containing the α3 and β2, but not the α6, subunits in the rat spinal cord that function to inhibit the transmission of nociceptive mechanical stimuli via inhibiting the release of glutamate from C-fibers. Spinal nerve ligation produces a unilateral loss of α-CTX MII-induced mechanical hypersensitivity without altering α-CTX MII binding sites. Our data support a peripheral injury-induced loss of a cholinergic inhibitory tone at spinal α3β2* nAChRs, without the loss of the receptors themselves, which may contribute to mechanical hypersensitivity following spinal nerve ligation. PMID:18634758

  1. Functional nicotinic acetylcholine receptor reconstitution in Au(111)-supported thiolipid monolayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pissinis, Diego E.; Diaz, Carolina; Maza, Eliana; Bonini, Ida C.; Barrantes, Francisco J.; Salvarezza, Roberto C.; Schilardi, Patricia L.

    2015-09-01

    The insertion and function of the muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) in Au(111)-supported thiolipid self-assembled monolayers have been studied by atomic force microscopy (AFM), surface plasmon resonance (SPR), and electrochemical techniques. It was possible for the first time to resolve the supramolecular arrangement of the protein spontaneously inserted in a thiolipid monolayer in an aqueous solution. Geometric supramolecular arrays of nAChRs were observed, most commonly in a triangular form compatible with three nAChR dimers of ~20 nm each. Addition of the full agonist carbamoylcholine activated and opened the nAChR ion channel, as revealed by the increase in capacitance relative to that of the nAChR-thiolipid system under basal conditions. Thus, the self-assembled system appears to be a viable biomimetic model to measure ionic conductance mediated by ion-gated ion channels under different experimental conditions, with potential applications in biotechnology and pharmacology.

  2. Recent developments in novel antidepressants targeting α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Yu, Li-Fang; Zhang, Han-Kun; Caldarone, Barbara J; Eaton, J Brek; Lukas, Ronald J; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2014-10-23

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been investigated for developing drugs that can potentially treat various central nervous system disorders. Considerable evidence supports the hypothesis that modulation of the cholinergic system through activation and/or desensitization/inactivation of nAChR holds promise for the development of new antidepressants. The introductory portion of this Miniperspective discusses the basic pharmacology that underpins the involvement of α4β2-nAChRs in depression, along with the structural features that are essential to ligand recognition by the α4β2-nAChRs. The remainder of this Miniperspective analyzes reported nicotinic ligands in terms of drug design considerations and their potency and selectivity, with a particular focus on compounds exhibiting antidepressant-like effects in preclinical or clinical studies. This Miniperspective aims to provide an in-depth analysis of the potential for using nicotinic ligands in the treatment of depression, which may hold some promise in addressing an unmet clinical need by providing relief from depressive symptoms in refractory patients.

  3. Recent Developments in Novel Antidepressants Targeting α4β2-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been investigated for developing drugs that can potentially treat various central nervous system disorders. Considerable evidence supports the hypothesis that modulation of the cholinergic system through activation and/or desensitization/inactivation of nAChR holds promise for the development of new antidepressants. The introductory portion of this Miniperspective discusses the basic pharmacology that underpins the involvement of α4β2-nAChRs in depression, along with the structural features that are essential to ligand recognition by the α4β2-nAChRs. The remainder of this Miniperspective analyzes reported nicotinic ligands in terms of drug design considerations and their potency and selectivity, with a particular focus on compounds exhibiting antidepressant-like effects in preclinical or clinical studies. This Miniperspective aims to provide an in-depth analysis of the potential for using nicotinic ligands in the treatment of depression, which may hold some promise in addressing an unmet clinical need by providing relief from depressive symptoms in refractory patients. PMID:24901260

  4. 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

  5. Anticonvulsants Based on the α-Substituted Amide Group Pharmacophore Bind to and Inhibit Function of Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors.

    PubMed

    Krivoshein, Arcadius V

    2016-03-16

    Although the antiepileptic properties of α-substituted lactams, acetamides, and cyclic imides have been known for over 60 years, the mechanism by which they act remains unclear. I report here that these compounds bind to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) and inhibit its function. Using transient kinetic measurements with functionally active, nondesensitized receptors, I have discovered that (i) α-substituted lactams and cyclic imides are noncompetitive inhibitors of heteromeric subtypes (such as α4β2 and α3β4) of neuronal nAChRs and (ii) the binding affinity of these compounds toward the nAChR correlates with their potency in preventing maximal electroshock (MES)-induced convulsions in mice. Based on the hypothesis that α-substituted amide group is the essential pharmacophore of these drugs, I found and tested a simple compound, 2-phenylbutyramide. This compound indeed inhibits nAChR and shows good anticonvulsant activity in mice. Molecular docking simulations suggest that α-substituted lactams, acetamides, and cyclic imides bind to the same sites on the extracellular domain of the receptor. These new findings indicate that inhibition of brain nAChRs may play an important role in the action of these antiepileptic drugs, a role that has not been previously recognized.

  6. Block of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by philanthotoxins is strongly dependent on their subunit composition

    PubMed Central

    Kachel, Hamid S.; Patel, Rohit N.; Franzyk, Henrik; Mellor, Ian R.

    2016-01-01

    Philanthotoxin-433 (PhTX-433) is an active component of the venom from the Egyptian digger wasp, Philanthus triangulum. PhTX-433 inhibits several excitatory ligand-gated ion channels, and to improve selectivity two synthetic analogues, PhTX-343 and PhTX-12, were developed. Previous work showed a 22-fold selectivity of PhTX-12 over PhTX-343 for embryonic muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in TE671 cells. We investigated their inhibition of different neuronal nAChR subunit combinations as well as of embryonic muscle receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Whole-cell currents in response to application of acetylcholine alone or co-applied with PhTX analogue were studied by using two-electrode voltage-clamp. α3β4 nAChRs were most sensitive to PhTX-343 (IC50 = 12 nM at −80 mV) with α4β4, α4β2, α3β2, α7 and α1β1γδ being 5, 26, 114, 422 and 992 times less sensitive. In contrast α1β1γδ was most sensitive to PhTX-12 along with α3β4 (IC50 values of 100 nM) with α4β4, α4β2, α3β2 and α7 being 3, 3, 26 and 49 times less sensitive. PhTX-343 inhibition was strongly voltage-dependent for all subunit combinations except α7, whereas this was not the case for PhTX-12 for which weak voltage dependence was observed. We conclude that PhTX-343 mainly acts as an open-channel blocker of nAChRs with strong subtype selectivity. PMID:27901080

  7. Age-related changes in functional postsynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits in neurons of the laterodorsal tegmental nucleus, a nucleus important in drug addiction.

    PubMed

    Christensen, Mark H; Kohlmeier, Kristi A

    2016-03-01

    The earlier an individual initiates cigarette smoking, the higher the likelihood of development of dependency to nicotine, the addictive ingredient in cigarettes. One possible mechanism underlying this higher addiction liability is an ontogenetically differential cellular response induced by nicotine in neurons mediating the reinforcing or euphoric effects of this drug, which could arise from age-related differences in the composition of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits. In the current study, we examined whether the subunit composition of nAChRs differed between neurons within the laterodorsal tegmentum (LDT), a nucleus importantly involved in drug addiction associated behaviours, across two periods of ontogeny in which nicotine-mediated excitatory responses were shown to depend on age. To this end, whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in mouse brain slices from identified LDT neurons, in combination with nAChR subunit-specific receptor antagonists, were conducted. Comparison of the contribution of different nAChR subunits to acetylcholine (ACh)-induced inward currents indicated that the contributions of the β2 and/or β4 and α7 nAChR subunits alter across age. Taken together, we conclude that across a limited ontogenetic period, there is plasticity in the subunit composition of nAChRs in LDT neurons. In addition, our data indicate, for the first time, functional presence of α6 nAChR subunits in LDT neurons within the age ranges studied. Changes in subunit composition of nAChRs across ontogeny could contribute to the age-related differential excitability induced by nicotine. Differences in the subunit composition of nAChRs within the LDT would be expected to contribute to ontogenetic-dependent outflow from the LDT to target regions, which include reward-related circuitry.

  8. [Development of physical dependence on nicotine and endogenous opioid system--participation of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor].

    PubMed

    Kishioka, Shiroh; Kiguchi, Norikazu; Kobayashi, Yuka; Saika, Fumihiro; Yamamoto, Chizuko

    2014-10-01

    Nicotine (NIC) regulates various cellular functions acting on the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR). And nAChR consists of ligand-gated cation channels with pentameric structure and composed of α and β subunits. In the central nervous system, α 4 β 2 and α 7 nAChRs are the most abundantly expressed as nAChR subtypes. There are several lines of evidence indicating that systemic administration of NIC elicits the release of endogenous opioids, such as, endorphins, enkephalins and dynorphins, in the brain. NIC exerts numerous acute effects, for example, antinociceptive effects and the activating effects of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. In these effects, NIC-induced antinociception, but not HPA axis activation, was inhibited by opioid receptor antagonist, naloxone (NLX), and was also suppressed in morphine tolerated mice, indicating the participation of the endogenous opioid system in NIC-induced antinociception, but not HPA axis activation. Moreover, NIC-induced antinociception was antagonized by both α 4 β 2 and α 7 nAChR antagonists, while NIC-induced HPA axis activation was antagonized by α 4 β 2 nAChR antagonist, but not by α 7 nAChR antagonist. These results suggest that the endogenous opioid system may not be located on the downstream of α 4 β 2 nAChR. On the other hand, NIC has substantial physical dependence liability. NLX elicits NIC withdrawal after repeated NIC administration evaluated by corticosterone increase as a withdrawal sign, and NLX-precipitated NIC withdrawal is inhibited by concomitant administration of other opioid receptor antagonist, naltrexone, indicating the participation of endogenous opioid system in the development of physical dependence on NIC. NLX-precipitated NIC withdrawal was also inhibited by concomitant administration of an α 7 nAChR antagonist, but not an α 4 β 2 nAChR antagonist. Taken together, these findings suggest that the endogenous opioid system may be located on the downstream of α 7

  9. [Sites of synthesis of acetylcholine receptors in denervated muscles].

    PubMed

    Giacobini Robecchi, M G; Garelli, M; Filogamo, G

    1980-09-01

    Muscle fibres binding with 125I alpha-bungarotoxine from Bungarus Multicinctus, after treatment with saponine, shows (in electron microscope autoradiography) intracellular binding sites identifying sites of acetylcholine receptor synthesis. In innervated muscle, the acetylcholine receptor is located only at the neuromuscular junction. In denervated muscle the receptor is distributed along the whole sarcolemma; in this situation the acetylcholine receptor is synthesized "ex novo" in the membrane system over the whole length of the muscle fibre.

  10. Acetylcholine receptors in the human retina

    SciTech Connect

    Hutchins, J.B.; Hollyfield, J.G.

    1985-11-01

    Evidence for a population of acetylcholine (ACh) receptors in the human retina is presented. The authors have used the irreversible ligand TH-propylbenzilylcholine mustard (TH-PrBCM) to label muscarinic receptors. TH- or SVI-alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BTx) was used to label putative nicotinic receptors. Muscarinic receptors are apparently present in the inner plexiform layer of the retina. Autoradiographic grain densities are reduced in the presence of saturating concentrations of atropine, quinuclidinyl benzilate or scopolamine; this indicates that TH-PrBCM binding is specific for a population of muscarinic receptors in the human retina. Binding sites for radiolabeled alpha-BTx are found predominantly in the inner plexiform layer of the retina. Grain densities are reduced in the presence of d-tubocurarine, indicating that alpha-BTx may bind to a pharmacologically relevant nicotinic ACh receptor. This study provides evidence for cholinergic neurotransmission in the human retina.

  11. Alanine scan of α-conotoxin RegIIA reveals a selective α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist.

    PubMed

    Kompella, Shiva N; Hung, Andrew; Clark, Richard J; Marí, Frank; Adams, David J

    2015-01-09

    Activation of the α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtype has recently been implicated in the pathophysiology of various conditions, including development and progression of lung cancer and in nicotine addiction. As selective α3β4 nAChR antagonists, α-conotoxins are valuable tools to evaluate the functional roles of this receptor subtype. We previously reported the discovery of a new α4/7-conotoxin, RegIIA. RegIIA was isolated from Conus regius and inhibits acetylcholine (ACh)-evoked currents mediated by α3β4, α3β2, and α7 nAChR subtypes. The current study used alanine scanning mutagenesis to understand the selectivity profile of RegIIA at the α3β4 nAChR subtype. [N11A] and [N12A] RegIIA analogs exhibited 3-fold more selectivity for the α3β4 than the α3β2 nAChR subtype. We also report synthesis of [N11A,N12A]RegIIA, a selective α3β4 nAChR antagonist (IC50 of 370 nM) that could potentially be used in the treatment of lung cancer and nicotine addiction. Molecular dynamics simulations of RegIIA and [N11A,N12A]RegIIA bound to α3β4 and α3β2 suggest that destabilization of toxin contacts with residues at the principal and complementary faces of α3β2 (α3-Tyr(92), Ser(149), Tyr(189), Cys(192), and Tyr(196); β2-Trp(57), Arg(81), and Phe(119)) may form the molecular basis for the selectivity shift.

  12. Inflammation-induced increase in nicotinic acetylcholine receptor current in cutaneous nociceptive DRG neurons from the adult rat.

    PubMed

    Zhang, X-L; Albers, K M; Gold, M S

    2015-01-22

    The goals of the present study were to determine (1) the properties of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) currents in rat cutaneous dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons; (2) the impact of nAChR activation on the excitability of cutaneous DRG neurons; and (3) the impact of inflammation on the density and distribution of nAChR currents among cutaneous DRG neurons. Whole-cell patch-clamp techniques were used to study retrogradely labeled DRG neurons from naïve and complete Freund's adjuvant inflamed rats. Nicotine-evoked currents were detectable in ∼70% of the cutaneous DRG neurons, where only one of two current types, fast or slow currents based on rates of activation and inactivation, was present in each neuron. The biophysical and pharmacological properties of the fast current were consistent with nAChRs containing an α7 subunit while those of the slow current were consistent with nAChRs containing α3/β4 subunits. The majority of small diameter neurons with fast current were IB4- while the majority of small diameter neurons with slow current were IB4+. Preincubation with nicotine (1 μM) produced a transient (1 min) depolarization and increase in the excitability of neurons with fast current and a decrease in the amplitude of capsaicin-evoked current in neurons with slow current. Inflammation increased the current density of both slow and fast currents in small diameter neurons and increased the percentage of neurons with the fast current. With the relatively selective distribution of nAChR currents in putative nociceptive cutaneous DRG neurons, our results suggest that the role of these receptors in inflammatory hyperalgesia is likely to be complex and dependent on the concentration and timing of acetylcholine release in the periphery.

  13. The Role of α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor in Modulation of Heart Rate Dynamics in Endotoxemic Rats

    PubMed Central

    Mazloom, Roham; Eftekhari, Golnar; Rahimi, Maryam; Khori, Vahid; Hajizadeh, Sohrab; Dehpour, Ahmad R.; Mani, Ali R.

    2013-01-01

    Previous reports have indicated that artificial stimulation of the vagus nerve reduces systemic inflammation in experimental models of sepsis. This phenomenon is a part of a broader cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway which activates the vagus nerve to modulate inflammation through activation of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7nACHR). Heart rate variability represents the complex interplay between autonomic nervous system and cardiac pacemaker cells. Reduced heart rate variability and increased cardiac cycle regularity is a hallmark of clinical conditions that are associated with systemic inflammation (e.g. endotoxemia and sepsis). The present study was aimed to assess the role of α7nACHR in modulation of heart rate dynamics during systemic inflammation. Systemic inflammation was induced by injection of endotoxin (lipopolysaccharide) in rats. Electrocardiogram and body temperature were recorded in conscious animals using a telemetric system. Linear and non-linear indices of heart rate variability (e.g. sample entropy and fractal-like temporal structure) were assessed. RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry studies showed that α7nACHR is expressed in rat atrium and is mainly localized at the endothelial layer. Systemic administration of an α7nACHR antagonist (methyllycaconitine) did not show a significant effect on body temperature or heart rate dynamics in naïve rats. However, α7nACHR blockade could further reduce heart rate variability and elicit a febrile response in endotoxemic rats. Pre-treatment of endotoxemic animals with an α7nACHR agonist (PHA-543613) was unable to modulate heart rate dynamics in endotoxemic rats but could prevent the effect of endotoxin on body temperature within 24 h experiment. Neither methyllycaconitine nor PHA-543613 could affect cardiac beating variability of isolated perfused hearts taken from control or endotoxemic rats. Based on our observations we suggest a tonic role for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in

  14. Fixation of allosteric states of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor by chemical cross-linking

    PubMed Central

    Watty, Anke; Methfessel, Christoph; Hucho, Ferdinand

    1997-01-01

    Receptor activity can be described in terms of ligand-induced transitions between functional states. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), a prototypic ligand-gated ion channel, is an “unconventional allosteric protein” which exists in at least three interconvertible conformations, referred to as resting (low agonist affinity, closed channel), activated (open channel), and desensitized (high agonist affinity, closed channel). Here we show that 3,3′-dimethyl suberimidate (DMS) is an agonistic bifunctional cross-linking reagent, which irreversibly “freezes” the nAChR in a high agonist affinity/closed-channel state. The monofunctional homologue methyl acetoimidate, which is also a weak cholinergic agonist, has no such irreversible effect. Glutardialdehyde, a cross-linker that is not a cholinergic effector, fixes the receptor in a low-affinity state in the absence of carbamoylcholine, but, like DMS, in a high-affinity state in its presence. Covalent cross-linking thus allows us to arrest the nAChR in defined conformational states. PMID:9223339

  15. Putative nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits express differentially through the life cycle of codling moth, Cydia pomonella (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae).

    PubMed

    Martin, Jessica A; Garczynski, Stephen F

    2016-04-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are the targets of neonicotinoids and spinosads, two insecticides used in orchards to effectively control codling moth, Cydia pomonella (L.) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae). Orchardists in Washington State are concerned about the possibility of codling moth field populations developing resistance to these two insecticides. In an effort to help mitigate this issue, we initiated a project to identify and characterize codling moth nAChR subunits expressed in heads. This study had two main goals; (i) identify transcripts from a codling moth head transcriptome that encode for nAChR subunits, and (ii) determine nAChR subunit expression profiles in various life stages of codling moth. From a codling moth head transcriptome, 24 transcripts encoding for 12 putative nAChR subunit classes were identified and verified by PCR amplification, cloning, and sequence determination. Characterization of the deduced protein sequences encoded by putative nAChR transcripts revealed that they share the distinguishing features of the cys-loop ligand-gated ion channel superfamily with 9 α-type subunits and 3 β-type subunits identified. Phylogenetic analysis comparing these protein sequences to those of other insect nAChR subunits supports the identification of these proteins as nAChR subunits. Stage expression studies determined that there is clear differential expression of many of these subunits throughout the codling moth life cycle. The information from this study will be used in the future to monitor for potential target-site resistance mechanisms to neonicotinoids and spinosads in tolerant codling moth populations.

  16. Lipophilicity as a determinant of binding of procaine analogs to rat α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Cheffer, Arquimedes; Mustafa, Elba Vieira; T-do Amaral, Antonia; Ulrich, Henning

    2012-08-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been studied in detail with regard to their interaction with therapeutic and drug addiction-related compounds. Using a structure-activity approach, we have examined the relationship among the molecular features of a set of eight para-R-substituted N,N-[(dimethylamino)ethyl] benzoate hydrochlorides, structurally related to procaine and their affinity for the α(3)β(4) nAChR heterologously expressed in KXα3β4R2 cells. Affinity values (log[1/IC50]) of these compounds for the α(3)β(4) nAChR were determined by their competition with [(3)H]TCP binding. Log(1/IC50) values were analyzed considering different hydrophobic and electronic parameters and those related to molar refractivity. These have been experimentally determined or were taken from published literature. In accordance with literature observations, the generated cross-validated quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) equations indicated a significant contribution of hydrophobic term to binding affinity of procaine analogs to the receptor and predicted affinity values for several local anesthetics (LAs) sets taken from the literature. The predicted values by using the QSAR model correlated well with the published values both for neuronal and for electroplaque nAChRs. Our work also reveals the general structure features of LAs that are important for interaction with nAChRs as well as the structural modifications that could be made to enhance binding affinity.

  17. Redistribution of adrenomedullary nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits and the effect on circulating epinephrine levels in a murine model of acute asthma

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xi; Feng, Juntao; Hu, Chengping; Qin, Qingwu; Li, Yuanyuan; Qin, Ling

    2017-01-01

    The lack of circulating epinephrine (EPI) in the pathogenesis of asthma has long been attributed to the lack of adrenergic nerves in human airways. However, in this study we considered that EPI levels are regulated by EPI release in addition to synthesis. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been shown to control EPI release, and we hypothesized that redistribution of nAChR subunits modulates EPI release and circulating EPI levels. Using a mouse model of asthma, circulating EPI levels were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. Changes in the expression of nAChR subunits in the adrenal medulla were observed by reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) and western blot analysis. Expression of phenylethanolamine N-methyltransferase, tyrosine hydroxylase and galanin was detected by RT-qPCR. Lung pathology, airway resistance (RL) and EPI levels were also assessed after treatment with an α7 nAChR agonist or antagonist. α7 nAChR mRNA expression in the adrenal medulla was increased by more than 2-fold (P<0.05), and circulating EPI levels increased rapidly after treatment with the α7 nAChR agonist. These results indicated that increased EPI release, which was caused by the overexpression of α7 nAChR, was responsible for elevated circulating EPI levels. After treatment with an agonist of α7 nAChR, RL was significantly decreased. Serum corticosterone levels in individual mice were measured to rule out glucocorticoid as the main mediator of changes in EPI levels. On the whole, redistribution of nAChR subunits, primarily α7 nAChR, occurs in the adrenal medulla in asthmatic mice. Increased α7 nAChR expression can rapidly increase serum EPI levels and decrease airway responsiveness. PMID:28035367

  18. Three austin family compounds from Penicillium brasilianum exhibit selective blocking action on cockroach nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Kataoka, Saori; Furutani, Shogo; Hirata, Koichi; Hayashi, Hideo; Matsuda, Kazuhiko

    2011-01-01

    Austin (AT) and its derivatives (dehydroaustin (DAT) and acetoxydehydroaustin (ADAT)) produced by Penicillium brasilianum MG-11 exhibit toxicity to insects, yet their targets are unknown. Here, we used whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology to investigate the action of AT family compounds on cockroach acetylcholine (ACh), γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and l-glutamate receptors expressed in the American cockroach (Periplaneta americana) neuron. U-tube application of AT or its derivatives did not induce any current amplitudes, suggesting that they did not act as agonist of these three receptors. In the second step of experiments, they were bath-applied for 1min before co-application with the corresponding ligand. We found that AT and its derivatives had no effect on GABA and l-glutamate-induced currents, whereas they significantly reduced ACh- and epibatidine-induced currents, showing that these compounds acted as selective antagonists of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed in the cockroach neuron. Of the compounds, DAT showed the highest blocking potency for nAChRs, differentially attenuating the peak and slowly desensitizing current amplitude of ACh-induced responses with pIC(50) (=-logIC(50) (M)) values of 6.11 and 5.91, respectively. DAT reduced the maximum normalized response to ACh without a significant shift in EC(50), suggesting that the blocking action is not competitive with ACh.

  19. Brain Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Availability and Response to Smoking Cessation Treatment A Randomized Trial

    PubMed Central

    Brody, Arthur L.; Mukhin, Alexey G.; Mamoun, Michael S.; Luu, Trinh; Neary, Meaghan; Liang, Lidia; Shieh, Jennifer; Sugar, Catherine A.; Rose, Jed E.; Mandelkern, Mark A.

    2015-01-01

    IMPORTANCE Cigarette smoking leads to upregulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the human brain, including the common α4β2* nAChR subtype. While subjective aspects of tobacco dependence have been extensively examined as predictors of quitting smoking with treatment, no studies to our knowledge have yet reported the relationship between the extent of pretreatment upregulation of nAChRs and smoking cessation. OBJECTIVE To determine whether the degree of nAChR upregulation in smokers predicts quitting with a standard course of treatment. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS Eighty-one tobacco-dependent cigarette smokers (volunteer sample) underwent positron emission tomographic (PET) scanning of the brain with the radiotracer 2-FA followed by 10 weeks of double-blind, placebo-controlled treatment with nicotine patch (random assignment). Pretreatment specific binding volume of distribution (VS/fP) on PET images (a value that is proportional to α4β2* nAChR availability) was determined for 8 brain regions of interest, and participant-reported ratings of nicotine dependence, craving, and self-efficacy were collected. Relationships between these pretreatment measures, treatment type, and outcome were then determined. The study took place at academic PET and clinical research centers. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES Posttreatment quit status after treatment, defined as a participant report of 7 or more days of continuous abstinence and an exhaled carbon monoxide level of 3 ppm or less. RESULTS Smokers with lower pretreatment VS/fP values (a potential marker of less severe nAChR upregulation) across all brain regions studied were more likely to quit smoking (multivariate analysis of covariance, F8,69 = 4.5; P < .001), regardless of treatment group assignment. Furthermore, pretreatment average VS/fP values provided additional predictive power for likelihood of quitting beyond the self-report measures (stepwise binary logistic regression, likelihood ratio χ12

  20. Synthesis, Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Binding, Antinociceptive and Seizure Properties of Methyllycaconitine Analogs

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, F. Ivy; Ma, Wei; Navarro, Hernán A.; Abraham, Philip; Wolckenhauer, Scott A.; Damaj, M. I.; Martin, Billy R.

    2007-01-01

    A series of methyllycaconitine (1a, MLA) analogs was synthesized where the (S)-2-methylsuccinimidobenzoyl group in MLA was replaced with a (R)-2-methyl, 2,2-dimethyl-, 2,3-dimethyl, 2-phenyl- and 2-cyclohexylsuccinimidobenzoyl (1b–f) group. The analogs 1b–f were evaluated for their inhibition of [125I]iodo MLA binding at rat brain α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). In order to determine selectivity, MLA and the analogs 1b–f were evaluated for inhibition of binding to rat brain α, β nAChR using [3H]epibatidine. At the α7 nAChR, MLA showed a Ki value of 0.87 nM, analogs 1b–e possessed Ki values of 1.68–2.16 nM, and 1f showed a Ki value of 26.8 nM. Surprisingly, the analog 1e containing the large phenyl substituent (Ki = 1.68 nM) possessed the highest affinity. None of the compounds possessed appreciable affinity for α, β nAChRs. MLA antagonized nicotine-induced seizures with an AD50 = 2mg/kg. None of the MLA analogs were as potent as MLA in this assay. MLA and all of the MLA analogs, with the exception of 1b, antagonized nicotine’s antinociceptive effects in the tail-flick assay. Compound 1c (Ki = 1.78 nM at α7 nAChR) with an AD50 value of 1.8 mg/kg was 6.7 times more potent than MLA (AD50 = 12 mg/kg) in antagonizing nicotine’s antinociceptive effects but was 5-fold less potent than MLA in blocking nicotine-induced seizures. Since MLA has been reported to show neuroprotection against β-amyloid1–42, these new analogs which have high α7 nAChR affinity and good selectivity relative to α, β nAChRs will be useful biological tools for studying the effects of α7 nAChR antagonist and neuroprotection. PMID:17098430

  1. Pharmacologically Distinct Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Drive Efferent-Mediated Excitation in Calyx-Bearing Vestibular Afferents

    PubMed Central

    Kewin, Kevin; Jordan, Paivi M.; Cameron, Peter; Klapczynski, Marcin; McIntosh, J. Michael; Crooks, Peter A.; Dwoskin, Linda P.; Lysakowski, Anna

    2015-01-01

    Electrical stimulation of vestibular efferent neurons rapidly excites the resting discharge of calyx/dimorphic (CD) afferents. In turtle, this excitation arises when acetylcholine (ACh), released from efferent terminals, directly depolarizes calyceal endings by activating nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChRs). Although molecular biological data from the peripheral vestibular system implicate most of the known nAChR subunits, specific information about those contributing to efferent-mediated excitation of CD afferents is lacking. We sought to identify the nAChR subunits that underlie the rapid excitation of CD afferents and whether they differ from α9α10 nAChRs on type II hair cells that drive efferent-mediated inhibition in adjacent bouton afferents. We recorded from CD and bouton afferents innervating the turtle posterior crista during electrical stimulation of vestibular efferents while applying several subtype-selective nAChR agonists and antagonists. The α9α10 nAChR antagonists, α-bungarotoxin and α-conotoxin RgIA, blocked efferent-mediated inhibition in bouton afferents while leaving efferent-mediated excitation in CD units largely intact. Conversely, 5-iodo-A-85380, sazetidine-A, varenicline, α-conotoxin MII, and bPiDDB (N,N-dodecane-1,12-diyl-bis-3-picolinium dibromide) blocked efferent-mediated excitation in CD afferents without affecting efferent-mediated inhibition in bouton afferents. This pharmacological profile suggested that calyceal nAChRs contain α6 and β2, but not α9, nAChR subunits. Selective blockade of efferent-mediated excitation in CD afferents distinguished dimorphic from calyx afferents by revealing type II hair cell input. Dimorphic afferents differed in having higher mean discharge rates and a mean efferent-mediated excitation that was smaller in amplitude yet longer in duration. Molecular biological data demonstrated the expression of α9 in turtle hair cells and α4 and β2 in associated vestibular ganglia. PMID:25716861

  2. An Accessory Agonist Binding Site Promotes Activation of α4β2* Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors*

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jingyi; Kuryatov, Alexander; Sriram, Aarati; Jin, Zhuang; Kamenecka, Theodore M.; Kenny, Paul J.; Lindstrom, Jon

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing α4, β2, and sometimes other subunits (α4β2* nAChRs) regulate addictive and other behavioral effects of nicotine. These nAChRs exist in several stoichiometries, typically with two high affinity acetylcholine (ACh) binding sites at the interface of α4 and β2 subunits and a fifth accessory subunit. A third low affinity ACh binding site is formed when this accessory subunit is α4 but not if it is β2. Agonists selective for the accessory ACh site, such as 3-[3-(3-pyridyl)-1,2,4-oxadiazol-5-yl]benzonitrile (NS9283), cannot alone activate a nAChR but can facilitate more efficient activation in combination with agonists at the canonical α4β2 sites. We therefore suggest categorizing agonists according to their site selectivity. NS9283 binds to the accessory ACh binding site; thus it is termed an accessory site-selective agonist. We expressed (α4β2)2 concatamers in Xenopus oocytes with free accessory subunits to obtain defined nAChR stoichiometries and α4/accessory subunit interfaces. We show that α2, α3, α4, and α6 accessory subunits can form binding sites for ACh and NS9283 at interfaces with α4 subunits, but β2 and β4 accessory subunits cannot. To permit selective blockage of the accessory site, α4 threonine 126 located on the minus side of α4 that contributes to the accessory site, but not the α4β2 sites, was mutated to cysteine. Alkylation of this cysteine with a thioreactive reagent blocked activity of ACh and NS9283 at the accessory site. Accessory agonist binding sites are promising drug targets. PMID:25869137

  3. Probing the non-canonical interface for agonist interaction with an α5 containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Marotta, Christopher B; Dilworth, Crystal N; Lester, Henry A; Dougherty, Dennis A

    2014-02-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) containing the α5 subunit are of interest because genome-wide association studies and candidate gene studies have identified polymorphisms in the α5 gene that are linked to an increased risk for nicotine dependence, lung cancer, and/or alcohol addiction. To probe the functional impact of an α5 subunit on nAChRs, a method to prepare a homogeneous population of α5-containing receptors must be developed. Here we use a gain of function (9') mutation to isolate populations of α5-containing nAChRs for characterization by electrophysiology. We find that the α5 subunit modulates nAChR rectification when co-assembled with α4 and β2 subunits. We also probe the α5-α4 interface for possible ligand-binding interactions. We find that mutations expected to ablate an agonist-binding site involving the α5 subunit have no impact on receptor function. The most straightforward interpretation of this observation is that agonists do not bind at the α5-α4 interface, in contrast to what has recently been demonstrated for the α4-α4 interface in related receptors. In addition, our mutational results suggest that the α5 subunit does not replace the α4 or β2 subunits and is relegated to occupying only the auxiliary position of the pentameric receptor.

  4. Discovery of a potent and selective α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist from an α-conotoxin synthetic combinatorial library.

    PubMed

    Chang, Yi-Pin; Banerjee, Jayati; Dowell, Cheryl; Wu, Jinhua; Gyanda, Reena; Houghten, Richard A; Toll, Lawrence; McIntosh, J Michael; Armishaw, Christopher J

    2014-04-24

    α-Conotoxins are disulfide-rich peptide neurotoxins that selectively inhibit neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). The α3β4 nAChR subtype has been identified as a novel target for managing nicotine addiction. Using a mixture-based positional-scanning synthetic combinatorial library (PS-SCL) with the α4/4-conotoxin BuIA framework, we discovered a highly potent and selective α3β4 nAChR antagonist. The initial PS-SCL consisted of a total of 113 379 904 sequences that were screened for α3β4 nAChR inhibition, which facilitated the design and synthesis of a second generation library of 64 individual α-conotoxin derivatives. Eleven analogues were identified as α3β4 nAChR antagonists, with TP-2212-59 exhibiting the most potent antagonistic activity and selectivity over the α3β2 and α4β2 nAChR subtypes. Final electrophysiological characterization demonstrated that TP-2212-59 inhibited acetylcholine evoked currents in α3β4 nAChRs heterogeneously expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes with a calculated IC50 of 2.3 nM and exhibited more than 1000-fold selectivity over the α3β2 and α7 nAChR subtypes. As such, TP-2212-59 is among the most potent α3β4 nAChRs antagonists identified to date and further demonstrates the utility of mixture-based combinatorial libraries in the discovery of novel α-conotoxin derivatives with refined pharmacological activity.

  5. Agonists block currents through acetylcholine receptor channels.

    PubMed Central

    Sine, S M; Steinbach, J H

    1984-01-01

    We have examined the effects of high concentrations of cholinergic agonists on currents through single acetylcholine receptor (AChR) channels on clonal BC3H1 cells. We find that raised concentrations of acetylcholine (ACh; above 300 microM) or carbamylcholine (Carb; above 1,000 microM) produce a voltage- and concentration-dependent reduction in the mean single-channel current. Raised concentrations of suberyldicholine (Sub; above 3 microM) produce a voltage- and concentration-dependent increase in the number of brief duration low-conductance interruptions of open-channel currents. These observations can be quantitatively described by a model in which agonist molecules enter and transiently occlude the ion-channel of the AChR. PMID:6478036

  6. Effects of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists on cognition in rhesus monkeys with a chronic cocaine self-administration history.

    PubMed

    Gould, Robert W; Garg, Pradeep K; Garg, Sudha; Nader, Michael A

    2013-01-01

    Cocaine use is associated with impaired cognitive function, which may negatively impact treatment outcomes. One pharmacological strategy to improve cognition involves nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) stimulation. However, the effects of chronic cocaine exposure on nAChR distribution and function have not been characterized. Thus, one goal of this study was to examine nAChR availability in rhesus monkeys with an extensive cocaine self-administration history (n = 4; ~6 years, mean intake, 1463 mg/kg) compared to age-matched cocaine-naive control monkeys (n = 5). Using [¹¹C]-nicotine and positron emission tomography (PET) imaging, cocaine-experienced monkeys showed significantly higher receptor availability in the hippocampus compared to cocaine-naive monkeys. A second goal was to examine the effects of nAChR agonists on multiple domains of cognitive performance in these same monkeys. For these studies, working memory was assessed using a delayed match-to-sample (DMS) task, associative learning and behavioral flexibility using stimulus discrimination and reversal learning tasks. When administered acutely, the nonselective high-efficacy agonist nicotine, the low-efficacy α4β2* subtype-selective agonist varenicline and the high-efficacy α7 subtype-selective agonist, PNU-282987 significantly improved DMS performance in both cocaine-naive and cocaine-experienced monkeys. Individual doses of nicotine and varenicline that engendered maximum cognitive enhancing effects on working memory did not affect discrimination or reversal learning, while PNU-282987 disrupted reversal learning in the cocaine-naive monkeys. These findings indicate that a cocaine self-administration history influenced nAChR distribution and the effects of nAChR agonists on cognitive performance, including a reduced sensitivity to the disrupting effects on reversal learning. The cognitive enhancing effects of nAChR agonists may be beneficial in combination with behavioral treatments for

  7. 6-bromohypaphorine from marine nudibranch mollusk Hermissenda crassicornis is an agonist of human α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Kasheverov, Igor E; Shelukhina, Irina V; Kudryavtsev, Denis S; Makarieva, Tatyana N; Spirova, Ekaterina N; Guzii, Alla G; Stonik, Valentin A; Tsetlin, Victor I

    2015-03-12

    6-Bromohypaphorine (6-BHP) has been isolated from the marine sponges Pachymatisma johnstoni, Aplysina sp., and the tunicate Aplidium conicum, but data on its biological activity were not available. For the nudibranch mollusk Hermissenda crassicornis no endogenous compounds were known, and here we describe the isolation of 6-BHP from this mollusk and its effects on different nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). Two-electrode voltage-clamp experiments on the chimeric α7 nAChR (built of chicken α7 ligand-binding and glycine receptor transmembrane domains) or on rat α4β2 nAChR expressed in Xenopus oocytes revealed no action of 6-BHP. However, in radioligand analysis, 6-BHP competed with radioiodinated α-bungarotoxin for binding to human α7 nAChR expressed in GH4C1 cells (IC50 23 ± 1 μM), but showed no competition on muscle-type nAChR from Torpedo californica. In Ca2+-imaging experiments on the human α7 nAChR expressed in the Neuro2a cells, 6-BHP in the presence of PNU120596 behaved as an agonist (EC50 ~80 μM). To the best of our knowledge, 6-BHP is the first low-molecular weight compound from marine source which is an agonist of the nAChR subtype. This may have physiological importance because H. crassicornis, with its simple and tractable nervous system, is a convenient model system for studying the learning and memory processes.

  8. 6-Bromohypaphorine from Marine Nudibranch Mollusk Hermissenda crassicornis is an Agonist of Human α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Kasheverov, Igor E.; Shelukhina, Irina V.; Kudryavtsev, Denis S.; Makarieva, Tatyana N.; Spirova, Ekaterina N.; Guzii, Alla G.; Stonik, Valentin A.; Tsetlin, Victor I.

    2015-01-01

    6-Bromohypaphorine (6-BHP) has been isolated from the marine sponges Pachymatisma johnstoni, Aplysina sp., and the tunicate Aplidium conicum, but data on its biological activity were not available. For the nudibranch mollusk Hermissenda crassicornis no endogenous compounds were known, and here we describe the isolation of 6-BHP from this mollusk and its effects on different nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). Two-electrode voltage-clamp experiments on the chimeric α7 nAChR (built of chicken α7 ligand-binding and glycine receptor transmembrane domains) or on rat α4β2 nAChR expressed in Xenopus oocytes revealed no action of 6-BHP. However, in radioligand analysis, 6-BHP competed with radioiodinated α-bungarotoxin for binding to human α7 nAChR expressed in GH4C1 cells (IC50 23 ± 1 μM), but showed no competition on muscle-type nAChR from Torpedo californica. In Ca2+-imaging experiments on the human α7 nAChR expressed in the Neuro2a cells, 6-BHP in the presence of PNU120596 behaved as an agonist (EC50 ~80 μM). To the best of our knowledge, 6-BHP is the first low-molecular weight compound from marine source which is an agonist of the nAChR subtype. This may have physiological importance because H. crassicornis, with its simple and tractable nervous system, is a convenient model system for studying the learning and memory processes. PMID:25775422

  9. Role in the selectivity of neonicotinoids of insect-specific basic residues in loop D of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist binding site.

    PubMed

    Shimomura, Masaru; Yokota, Maiko; Ihara, Makoto; Akamatsu, Miki; Sattelle, David B; Matsuda, Kazuhiko

    2006-10-01

    The insecticide imidacloprid and structurally related neonicotinoids act selectively on insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). To investigate the mechanism of neonicotinoid selectivity, we have examined the effects of mutations to basic amino acid residues in loop D of the nAChR acetylcholine (ACh) binding site on the interactions with imidacloprid. The receptors investigated are the recombinant chicken alpha4beta2 nAChR and Drosophila melanogaster Dalpha2/chicken beta2 hybrid nAChR expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Although mutations of Thr77 in loop D of the beta2 subunit resulted in a barely detectable effect on the imidacloprid concentration-response curve for the alpha4beta2 nAChR, T77R;E79V double mutations shifted the curve dramatically to higher affinity binding of imidacloprid. Likewise, T77K;E79R and T77N;E79R double mutations in the Dalpha2beta2 nAChR also resulted in a shift to a higher affinity for imidacloprid, which exceeded that observed for a single mutation of Thr77 to basic residues. By contrast, these double mutations scarcely influenced the ACh concentration-response curve, suggesting selective interactions with imidacloprid of the newly introduced basic residues. Computational, homology models of the agonist binding domain of the wild-type and mutant alpha4beta2 and Dalpha2beta2 nAChRs with imidacloprid bound were generated based on the crystal structures of acetylcholine binding proteins of Lymnaea stagnalis and Aplysia californica. The models indicate that the nitro group of imidacloprid interacts directly with the introduced basic residues at position 77, whereas those at position 79 either prevent or permit such interactions depending on their electrostatic properties, thereby explaining the observed functional changes resulting from site-directed mutagenesis.

  10. Influence of Membrane Receptor Lateral Diffusion on the Short-Term Depression of Acetylcholine-Induced Current in Helix Neurons.

    PubMed

    Vasilyeva, Natalia A; Murzina, Galina B; Kireev, Igor I; Pivovarov, Arkady S

    2017-02-24

    We have studied how various drugs increasing the rate of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) lateral diffusion affect the depression of ACh-induced current in land snail Helix lucorum neurons responsible for defensive behavior. The acetylcholine (ACh) iontophoretic application protocol imitated the behavioral habituation protocol for the intact animal. We found that the drugs decreasing cholesterol level in cell membranes as methyl-β-cyclodextrin 1 mM and Ro 48-8071 2 µM, and polyclonal antibodies to actin-binding proteins as spectrin 5 µg/ml and merlin 2.5 µg/ml have changed the dynamic of ACh-current depression. The nAChRs lateral diffusion coefficient was obtained by fluorescence recovery after photobleaching. A curve fitting model specially created for analysis of short-term choline sensitivity depression in snail neurons helped us evaluate separately the contribution of nAChRs lateral diffusion, their endocytosis and exocytosis to observed effects during electrophysiological experiments. Taken together, we hypothesize that nAChRs lateral diffusion plays an important role in the cellular correlate of habituation in land snail Helix lucorum neurons.

  11. Binding of rabies virus to purified Torpedo acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Lentz, T L; Benson, R J; Klimowicz, D; Wilson, P T; Hawrot, E

    1986-12-01

    The binding of 125I- and 35S-labeled rabies virus (CVS strain) to affinity-purified acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo electric organ was demonstrated. The binding of rabies virus to the acetylcholine receptor increased with increasing receptor concentration, was dependent on the pH of the incubation medium, and was saturable with increasing virus concentration. Binding of radioactively labeled virus was effectively competed by unlabeled homologous virus particles. Binding of 35S-labeled rabies virus to the AChR was inhibited up to 50% by alpha-bungarotoxin and up to 30% by (+)-tubocurarine but was not affected by atropine. These results demonstrate direct binding of rabies virus to a well-defined neurotransmitter receptor, namely the acetylcholine receptor and indicate that at least a portion of the virus interaction occurs near the acetylcholine binding site on the receptor. These findings support the hypothesis that the acetylcholine receptor may serve as a rabies virus receptor in vivo.

  12. Homology modeling of human muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Trayder; McLean, Kimberley C; McRobb, Fiona M; Manallack, David T; Chalmers, David K; Yuriev, Elizabeth

    2014-01-27

    We have developed homology models of the acetylcholine muscarinic receptors M₁R-M₅R, based on the β₂-adrenergic receptor crystal as the template. This is the first report of homology modeling of all five subtypes of acetylcholine muscarinic receptors with binding sites optimized for ligand binding. The models were evaluated for their ability to discriminate between muscarinic antagonists and decoy compounds using virtual screening using enrichment factors, area under the ROC curve (AUC), and an early enrichment measure, LogAUC. The models produce rational binding modes of docked ligands as well as good enrichment capacity when tested against property-matched decoy libraries, which demonstrates their unbiased predictive ability. To test the relative effects of homology model template selection and the binding site optimization procedure, we generated and evaluated a naïve M₂R model, using the M₃R crystal structure as a template. Our results confirm previous findings that binding site optimization using ligand(s) active at a particular receptor, i.e. including functional knowledge into the model building process, has a more pronounced effect on model quality than target-template sequence similarity. The optimized M₁R-M₅R homology models are made available as part of the Supporting Information to allow researchers to use these structures, compare them to their own results, and thus advance the development of better modeling approaches.

  13. Mammalian Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: From Structure to Function

    PubMed Central

    Albuquerque, Edson X.; Pereira, Edna F. R.; Alkondon, Manickavasagom; Rogers, Scott W.

    2009-01-01

    The classical studies of nicotine by Langley at the turn of the 20th century introduced the concept of a “receptive substance,” from which the idea of a “receptor” came to light. Subsequent studies aided by the Torpedo electric organ, a rich source of muscle-type nicotinic receptors (nAChRs), and the discovery of α-bungarotoxin, a snake toxin that binds pseudo-irreversibly to the muscle nAChR, resulted in the muscle nAChR being the best characterized ligand-gated ion channel hitherto. With the advancement of functional and genetic studies in the late 1980s, the existence of nAChRs in the mammalian brain was confirmed and the realization that the numerous nAChR subtypes contribute to the psychoactive properties of nicotine and other drugs of abuse and to the neuropathology of various diseases, including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and schizophrenia, has since emerged. This review provides a comprehensive overview of these findings and the more recent revelations of the impact that the rich diversity in function and expression of this receptor family has on neuronal and nonneuronal cells throughout the body. Despite these numerous developments, our understanding of the contributions of specific neuronal nAChR subtypes to the many facets of physiology throughout the body remains in its infancy. PMID:19126755

  14. Minimal RNA aptamer sequences that can inhibit or alleviate noncompetitive inhibition of the muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Sivaprakasam, Kannan; Pagán, Oné R; Hess, George P

    2010-02-01

    Combinatorially synthesized nucleotide polymers have been used during the last decade to find ligands that bind to specific sites on biological molecules, including membrane-bound proteins such as the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). The neurotransmitter receptors belong to a group of four structurally related proteins that regulate signal transmission between ~10(11) neurons of the mammalian nervous system. The nAChRs are inhibited by compounds such as the anticonvulsant MK-801 [(+)-dizocilpine] and abused drugs such as cocaine. Based on predictions arising from the mechanism of receptor inhibition by MK-801 and cocaine, we developed two classes of RNA aptamers: class I members, which inhibit the nAChR, and class II members, which alleviate inhibition of the receptor by MK-801 and cocaine. The systematic evolution of ligands by the exponential enrichment (SELEX) method was used to obtain these compounds. Here, we report that we have truncated RNA aptamers in each class to determine the minimal nucleic acid sequence that retains the characteristic function for which the aptamer was originally selected. We demonstrate that a truncated class I aptamer containing a sequence of seven nucleotides inhibits the nAChR and that a truncated class II aptamer containing a sequence of only four nucleotides can alleviate MK-801 inhibition.

  15. Whole-cell patch-clamp recording of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in adult Brugia malayi muscle

    PubMed Central

    Robertson, A. P.; Buxton, S. K.; Martin, R. J.

    2013-01-01

    Lymphatic filariasis is a debilitating disease caused by clade III parasites like Brugia malayi and Wuchereria bancrofti. Current recommended treatment regimen for this disease relies on albendazole, ivermectin and diethylcarbamazine, none of which targets the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in these parasitic nematodes. Our aim therefore has been to develop adult B. malayi for electrophysiological recordings to aid in characterizing the ion channels in this parasite as anthelmintic target sites. In that regard, we recently demonstrated the amenability of adult B. malayi to patch-clamp recordings and presented results on the single-channel properties of nAChR in this nematode. We have built on this by recording whole-cell nAChR currents from adult B. malayi muscle. Acetylcholine, levamisole, pyrantel, bephenium and tribendimidine activated the receptors on B. malayi muscle, producing robust currents ranging from > 200 pA to ~1.5 nA. Levamisole completely inhibited motility of the adult B. malayi within 10 min and after 60 min, motility had recovered back to control values. PMID:23562945

  16. Nicotine enhances alcohol intake and dopaminergic responses through β2* and β4* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Tolu, Stefania; Marti, Fabio; Morel, Carole; Perrier, Carole; Torquet, Nicolas; Pons, Stephanie; de Beaurepaire, Renaud; Faure, Philippe

    2017-01-01

    Alcohol and nicotine are the most widely co-abused drugs. Both modify the activity of dopaminergic (DA) neurons of the Ventral Tegmental Area (VTA) and lead to an increase in DA release in the Nucleus Accumbens, thereby affecting the reward system. Evidences support the hypothesis that distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), the molecular target of acetylcholine (ACh) and exogenous nicotine, are also in addition implicated in the response to alcohol. The precise molecular and neuronal substrates of this interaction are however not well understood. Here we used in vivo electrophysiology in the VTA to characterise acute and chronic interactions between nicotine and alcohol. Simultaneous injections of the two drugs enhanced their responses on VTA DA neuron firing and chronic exposure to nicotine increased alcohol-induced DA responses and alcohol intake. Then, we assessed the role of β4 * nAChRs, but not β2 * nAChRs, in mediating acute responses to alcohol using nAChR subtypes knockout mice (β2−/− and β4−/− mice). Finally, we showed that nicotine-induced modifications of alcohol responses were absent in β2−/− and β4−/− mice, suggesting that nicotine triggers β2* and β4 * nAChR-dependent neuroadaptations that subsequently modify the responses to alcohol and thus indicating these receptors as key mediators in the complex interactions between these two drugs. PMID:28332590

  17. Drug-dependent behaviors and nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expressions in Caenorhabditis elegans following chronic nicotine exposure.

    PubMed

    Polli, Joseph R; Dobbins, Dorothy L; Kobet, Robert A; Farwell, Mary A; Zhang, Baohong; Lee, Myon-Hee; Pan, Xiaoping

    2015-03-01

    Nicotine, the major psychoactive compound in tobacco, targets nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and results in drug dependence. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans' (C. elegans) genome encodes conserved and extensive nicotinic receptor subunits, representing a useful system to investigate nicotine-induced nAChR expressions in the context of drug dependence. However, the in vivo expression pattern of nAChR genes under chronic nicotine exposure has not been fully investigated. To define the role of nAChR genes involved in nicotine-induced locomotion changes and the development of tolerance to these effects, we characterized the locomotion behavior combining the use of two systems: the Worm Tracker hardware and the WormLab software. Our results indicate that the combined system is an advantageous alternative to define drug-dependent locomotion behavior in C. elegans. Chronic (24-h dosing) nicotine exposure at 6.17 and 61.7μM induced nicotine-dependent behaviors, including drug stimulation, tolerance/adaption, and withdrawal responses. Specifically, the movement speed of naïve worms on nicotine-containing environments was significantly higher than on nicotine-free environments, suggesting locomotion stimulation by nicotine. In contrast, the 24-h 6.17μM nicotine-treated worms exhibited significantly higher speeds on nicotine-free plates than on nicotine-containing plates. Furthermore significantly increased locomotion behavior during nicotine cessation was observed in worms treated with a higher nicotine concentration of 61.7μM. The relatively low locomotion speed of nicotine-treated worms on nicotine-containing environments also indicates adaption/tolerance of worms to nicotine following chronic nicotine exposure. In addition, this study provides useful information regarding the comprehensive in vivo expression profile of the 28 "core" nAChRs following different dosages of chronic nicotine treatments. Eleven genes (lev-1, acr-6, acr-7, acr-11, lev-8, acr

  18. Novel neonicotinoid-agarose affinity column for Drosophila and Musca nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Tomizawa, M; Latli, B; Casida, J E

    1996-10-01

    Neonicotinoids such as the insecticide imidacloprid (IMI) act as agonists at the insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR). Head membranes of Drosophila melanogaster and Musca domestica have a single high-affinity binding site for [3H]IMI with KD values of 1-2 nM and Bmax values of 560-850 fmol/mg of protein. Locusta and Periplaneta nAChRs isolated with an alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BGT)-agarose affinity column are known to be alpha-subunit homooligomers. This study uses 1-[N-(6-chloro-3-pyridylmethyl)-N-ethyl]amino-1-amino-2-nitroethene++ + (which inhibits [3H]IMI binding to Drosophila and Musca head membranes at 2-3 nM) to develop a neonicotinoid-agarose affinity column. The procedure-introduction of Triton-solubilized Drosophila or Musca head membranes into this neonicotinoid-based column, elution with IMI, and analysis by lithium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamicle gel electrophoresis-gives only three proteins (69, 66, and 61 kDa) tentatively assigned as putative subunits of the nAChR; the same three proteins are obtained with Musca using the alpha-BGT-agarose affinity column. Photoaffinity labeling of the Drosophila and Musca putative subunits from the neonicotinoid column with 125I-alpha-BGT-4-azidosalicylic acid gives a labeled derivative of 66-69 kDa. The yield is 2-5 micrograms of receptor protein from 1 g of Drosophila or Musca heads. Neonicotinoid affinity chromatography to isolate native Drosophila and Musca receptors will facilitate studies on the structure and function of insect nAChRs.

  19. α-Conotoxin OmIA Is a Potent Ligand for the Acetylcholine-binding Protein as Well as α3β2 and α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors*

    PubMed Central

    Talley, Todd T.; Olivera, Baldomero M.; Han, Kyou-Hoon; Christensen, Sean B.; Dowell, Cheryl; Tsigelny, Igor; Ho, Kwok-Yiu; Taylor, Palmer; McIntosh, J. Michael

    2016-01-01

    The molluskan acetylcholine-binding protein (AChBP) is a homolog of the extracellular binding domain of the pentameric ligand-gated ion channel family. AChBP most closely resembles the α-subunit of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and in particular the homomeric α7 nicotinic receptor. We report the isolation and characterization of an α-conotoxin that has the highest known affinity for the Lymnaea AChBP and also potently blocks the α7 nAChR subtype when expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Remarkably, the peptide also has high affinity for the α3β2 nAChR indicating that α-conotoxin OmIA in combination with the AChBP may serve as a model system for understanding the binding determinants of α3β2 nAChRs. α-Conotoxin OmIA was purified from the venom of Conus omaria. It is a 17-amino-acid, two-disulfide bridge peptide. The ligand is the first α-conotoxin with higher affinity for the closely related receptor subtypes, α3β2 versus α6β2, and selectively blocks these two subtypes when compared with α2β2, α4β2, and α1β1δε nAChRs. PMID:16803900

  20. In vivo interactions between α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and nuclear peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-α: Implication for nicotine dependence.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Asti; Bagdas, Deniz; Muldoon, Pretal P; Lichtman, Aron H; Carroll, F Ivy; Greenwald, Mark; Miles, Michael F; Damaj, M Imad

    2017-03-07

    Chronic tobacco use dramatically increases health burdens and financial costs. Limitations of current smoking cessation therapies indicate the need for improved molecular targets. The main addictive component of tobacco, nicotine, exerts its dependency effects via nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Activation of the homomeric α7 nAChR reduces nicotine's rewarding properties in conditioned place preference (CPP) test and i.v. self-administration models, but the mechanism underlying these effects is unknown. Recently, the nuclear receptor peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor type-α (PPARα) has been implicated as a downstream signaling target of the α7 nAChR in ventral tegmental area dopamine cells. The present study investigated PPARα as a possible mediator of the effect of α7 nAChR activation in nicotine dependence. Our results demonstrate the PPARα antagonist GW6471 blocks actions of the α7 nAChR agonist PNU282987 on nicotine reward in an unbiased CPP test in male ICR adult mice. These findings suggests that α7 nAChR activation attenuates nicotine CPP in a PPARα-dependent manner. To evaluate PPARα activation in nicotine dependence we used the selective and potent PPARα agonist, WY-14643 and the clinically used PPARα activator, fenofibrate, in nicotine CPP and we observed attenuation of nicotine preference, but fenofibrate was less potent. We also studied PPARα in nicotine dependence by evaluating its activation in nicotine withdrawal. WY-14643 reversed nicotine withdrawal signs whereas fenofibrate had modest efficacy. This suggests that PPARα plays a role in nicotine reward and withdrawal and that further studies are warranted to elucidate its function in mediating the effects of α7 nAChRs in nicotine dependence.

  1. α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor is a Novel Mediator of Sinomenine Anti-Inflammation Effect in Macrophages Stimulated by Lipopolysaccharide.

    PubMed

    Yi, Lang; Luo, Jin-Fang; Xie, Bing-Bing; Liu, Jian-Xin; Wang, Jun-Yue; Liu, Liang; Wang, Pei-Xun; Zhou, Hua; Dong, Yan

    2015-08-01

    Sinomenine (SIN), an alkaloid derived from the plant Sinomenium acutum, has anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects and has been used for rheumatoid arthritis treatment in China. This study aims to verify the hypothesis that SIN acts on α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) to inhibit the activation of macrophages stimulated by lipopolysaccharide. The prototypical α7nAChR antagonist α-bungarotoxin and mecamylamine attenuated the effect of SIN on tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-6 in RAW264.7 murine macrophage-like cells and primary peritoneal macrophages of mouse induced by lipopolysaccharide. With the knockdown of α7nAChR expression in RAW264.7 cells by small interfering RNA, the inhibitory effect of SIN on tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-6 was reversed. Sinomenine decreased p65 expression in nuclear and increased IκBα expression in cytoplasm, and these effects were reversed by the α7nAChR small interfering RNA as well. These results indicate that the anti-inflammatory effects of SIN on macrophages in vitro depend on α7nAChR.

  2. Regulation of GABA release by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the neonatal rat hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    Maggi, Laura; Sher, Emanuele; Cherubini, Enrico

    2001-01-01

    The whole-cell configuration of the patch-clamp technique was used to study the modulation of giant depolarizing potentials (GDPs) by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in CA3 hippocampal neurons in slices from postnatal day (P) 2–6 rats.Bath application of nicotine increased GDP frequency in a concentration-dependent manner. For example, nicotine (0.5–1 μm) enhanced GDP frequency from 0.05 ± 0.04 to 0.17 ± 0.04 Hz. This effect was prevented by the broad-spectrum nicotinic receptor antagonist dihydro-β-erythtroidine (DHβE, 50 μm) and partially antagonized by methyllycaconitine (MLA, 50 nm) a competitive antagonist of α7 nAChRs. GDP frequency was also enhanced by AR-17779 (100 μm), a selective agonist of α7 nAChRs.The GABAA receptor antagonist bicuculline (10 μm) and the non-NMDA glutamate receptor antagonist DNQX (20 μm) blocked GDPs and prevented the effects of nicotine on GDPs. In the presence of DNQX, nicotine increased GABA-mediated synaptic noise, indicating that this drug may have a direct effect on GABAergic interneurons.Bath application of edrophonium (20 μm), a cholinesterase inhibitor, in the presence of atropine (1 μm), increased GDP frequency, indicating that nAChRs can be activated by ACh released from the septo-hippocampal fibres. This effect was prevented by DHβE (50 μm).In the majority of neurons tested, MLA (50 nm) and DHβE (50 μm) reduced the frequency of GDPs with different efficacy: a reduction of 98 ± 11 and 61 ± 29 % was observed with DHβE and MLA, respectively. In a subset of cells (40 % in the case of MLA and 17 % in the case of DHβE) these drugs induced a twofold increase in GDP frequency.It is suggested that, during development, nAChRs modulate the release of GABA, assessed as GDPs, through distinct nAChRs. The rise of intracellular calcium via nAChRs would further strengthen GABA-mediated oscillatory activity. This can be crucial for consolidation of synaptic contacts and for the fine-tuning of the

  3. 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.

  4. Imidacloprid and thiacloprid neonicotinoids bind more favourably to cockroach than to honeybee α6 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor: insights from computational studies.

    PubMed

    Selvam, Balaji; Graton, Jérôme; Laurent, Adèle D; Alamiddine, Zakaria; Mathé-Allainmat, Monique; Lebreton, Jacques; Coqueret, Olivier; Olivier, Christophe; Thany, Steeve H; Le Questel, Jean-Yves

    2015-02-01

    The binding interactions of two neonicotinoids, imidacloprid (IMI) and thiacloprid (THI) with the extracellular domains of cockroach and honeybee α6 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits in an homomeric receptor have been studied through docking and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. The binding mode predicted for the two neonicotinoids is validated through the good agreement observed between the theoretical results with the crystal structures of the corresponding complexes with Ac-AChBP, the recognized structural surrogate for insects nAChR extracellular ligand binding domain. The binding site of the two insect α6 receptors differs by only one residue of loop D, a serine residue (Ser83) in cockroach being replaced by a lysine residue (Lys108) in honeybee. The docking results show very close interactions for the two neonicotinoids with both α6 nAChR models, in correspondence to the trends observed in the experimental neonicotinoid-Ac-AChBP complexes. However, the docking parameters (scores and energies) are not significantly different between the two insect α6 nAChRs to draw clear conclusions. The MD results bring distinct trends. The analysis of the average interaction energies in the two insects α6 nAChRs shows indeed better affinity of neonicotinoids bound to α6 cockroach compared to honeybee nAChR. This preference is explained by tighter contacts with aromatic residues (Trp and Tyr) of the binding pocket. Interestingly, the non-conserved residue Lys108 of loop D of α6 honeybee nAChR interacts through van der Waals contacts with neonicotinoids, which appear more favourable than the direct or water mediated hydrogen-bond interaction between the OH group of Ser83 of α6 cockroach nAChR and the electronegative terminal group of the two neonicotinoids (nitro in IMI and cyano in THI). Finally, in both insects nAChRs, THI is consistently found to bind more favourably than IMI.

  5. Modulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by strychnine

    PubMed Central

    García-Colunga, Jesús; Miledi, Ricardo

    1999-01-01

    Strychnine, a potent and selective antagonist at glycine receptors, was found to inhibit muscle (α1β1γδ, α1β1γ, and α1β1δ) and neuronal (α2β2 and α2β4) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AcChoRs) expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Strychnine alone (up to 500 μM) did not elicit membrane currents in oocytes expressing AcChoRs, but, when applied before, concomitantly, or during superfusion of acetylcholine (AcCho), it rapidly and reversibly inhibited the current elicited by AcCho (AcCho-current). Although in the three cases the AcCho-current was reduced to the same level, its recovery was slower when the oocytes were preincubated with strychnine. The amount of AcCho-current inhibition depended on the receptor subtype, and the order of blocking potency by strychnine was α1β1γδ > α2β4 > α2β2. With the three forms of drug application, the Hill coefficient was close to one, suggesting a single site for the receptor interaction with strychnine, and this interaction appears to be noncompetitive. The inhibitory effects on muscle AcChoRs were voltage-independent, and the apparent dissociation constant for AcCho was not appreciably changed by strychnine. In contrast, the inhibitory effects on neuronal AcChoRs were voltage-dependent, with an electrical distance of ≈0.35. We conclude that strychnine regulates reversibly and noncompetitively the embryonic type of muscle AcChoR and some forms of neuronal AcChoRs. In the former case, strychnine presumably inhibits allosterically the receptor by binding at an external domain whereas, in the latter case, it blocks the open receptor-channel complex. PMID:10097172

  6. Sperm Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR) Mediates α7 Acetylcholine Receptor (AChR) Activation to Promote Fertilization

    PubMed Central

    Jaldety, Yael; Glick, Yair; Orr-Urtreger, Avi; Ickowicz, Debby; Gerber, Doron; Breitbart, Haim

    2012-01-01

    To attain fertilization the spermatozoon binds to the egg zona pellucida (ZP) via sperm receptor(s) and undergoes an acrosome reaction (AR). Several sperm receptors have been described in the literature; however, the identity of this receptor is not yet certain. In this study, we suggest that the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) might be a sperm receptor activated by ZP to induce epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-mediated AR. We found that isolated ZP or α7 agonists induced the AR in sperm from WT but not α7-null spermatozoa, and the induced AR was inhibited by α7 or EGFR antagonists. Moreover, α7-null sperm showed very little binding to the egg, and microfluidic affinity in vitro assay clearly showed that α7nAChR, as well as EGFR, interacted with ZP3. Induction of EGFR activation and the AR by an α7 agonist was inhibited by a Src family kinase (SFK) inhibitor. In conclusion we suggest that activation of α7 by ZP leads to SFK-dependent EGFR activation, Ca2+ influx, and the acrosome reaction. PMID:22577141

  7. Alexa Fluor 546-ArIB[V11L;V16A] is a potent ligand for selectively labeling alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Hone, Arik J; Whiteaker, Paul; Mohn, Jesse L; Jacob, Michele H; McIntosh, J Michael

    2010-08-01

    The alpha7* (*denotes the possible presence of additional subunits) nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtype is widely expressed in the vertebrate nervous system and implicated in neuropsychiatric disorders that compromise thought and cognition. In this report, we demonstrate that the recently developed fluorescent ligand Cy3-ArIB[V11L;V16A] labels alpha7 nAChRs in cultured hippocampal neurons. However, photobleaching of this ligand during long image acquisition times prompted us to develop a new derivative. In photostability studies, this new ligand, Alexa Fluor 546-ArIB[V11L;V16A], was significantly more resistant to bleaching than the Cy3 derivative. The classic alpha7 ligand alpha-bungarotoxin binds to alpha1* and alpha9* nAChRs. In contrast, Alexa Fluor 546-ArIB[V11L;V16A] potently (IC(50) 1.8 nM) and selectively blocked alpha7 nAChRs but not alpha1* or alpha9* nAChRs expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Selectivity was further confirmed by competition binding studies of native nAChRs in rat brain membranes. The fluorescence properties of Alexa Fluor 546-ArIB[V11L;V16A] were assessed using human embryonic kidney-293 cells stably transfected with nAChRs; labeling was observed on cells expressing alpha7 but not cells expressing alpha3beta2, alpha3beta4, or alpha4beta2 nAChRs. Further imaging studies demonstrate that Alexa Fluor 546-ArIB[V11L;V16A] labels hippocampal neurons from wild-type mice but not from nAChR alpha7 subunit-null mice. Thus, Alexa Fluor 546-ArIB[V11L;V16A] represents a potent and selective ligand for imaging alpha7 nAChRs.

  8. Deletion of the Alpha7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Gene Improves Cognitive Deficits and Synaptic Pathology in a Mouse Model of Alzheimer's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Dziewczapolski, Gustavo; Glogowski, Carolina M.; Masliah, Eliezer; Heinemann, Stephen F.

    2009-01-01

    It has been recently shown that the Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenic peptide amyloid-β1-42 (Aβ1-42) binds to the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) with high affinity and the α7nAChR and Aβ1-42 are both found co-localized in neuritic plaques of human brains with AD. Moreover, the intraneuronal accumulation of Aβ1-42 was shown to be facilitated by its high-affinity binding to the α7nAChR and α7nAChR activation mediates Aβ-induced tau protein phosphorylation. To test the hypothesis that α7nAChRs are involved in AD pathogenesis, we used a transgenic mouse model of AD over-expressing a mutated form of the human amyloid precursor protein (APP) and lacking the α7nAChR gene (APPα7KO). We have shown that, despite the presence of high amounts of APP and amyloid deposits, deleting the α7nAChR subunit in the mouse model of AD leads to a protection from the dysfunction in synaptic integrity (pathology and plasticity) and learning and memory behavior. Specifically, APPα7KO mice express APP and Aβ at similar levels to APP mice and yet they were able to solve a cognitive challenge such as the Morris water maze test significantly better than APP, with performances comparable to control groups. Moreover, deleting the α7nAChR subunit protected the brain from loss of the synaptic markers, synaptophysin and MAP2, reduced the gliosis, and preserved the capacity to elicit LTP otherwise deficient in APP mice. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that the α7nAChR plays a role in AD and suggests that interrupting α7nAChR function could be beneficial in the treatment of AD. PMID:19587288

  9. Targeting of α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in the Treatment of Schizophrenia and the Use of Auditory Sensory Gating as a Translational Biomarker

    PubMed Central

    Hashimoto, Kenji

    2015-01-01

    Accumulating evidence suggests that the α7 subtype of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) plays a key role in inflammatory processes, thought to be involved in the pathophysiology of neuropsychiatric diseases, such as schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s disease. Preclinical and clinical studies showed that the diminished suppression of P50 auditory evoked potentials in patients with schizophrenia may be associated with a decreased density of α7 nAChRs in the brain. This points to a role for auditory sensory gating (P50) as a translational biomarker. A number of agonists and positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) for α7 nAChR promoted beneficial effects in animal models with sensory gating and cognitive deficits. Additionally, several clinical studies showed that α7 nAChR agonists could improve suppression in auditory P50 evoked potentials, as well as cognitive deficits, and negative symptoms in patients with schizophrenia. Taken together, α7 nAChR presents as an extremely attractive therapeutic target for schizophrenia. In this article, the author discusses recent findings on α7 nAChR agonists such as DMXB-A, RG3487, TC-5619, tropisetron, EVP-6124 (encenicline), ABT-126, AQW051 and α7 nAChR PAMs such as JNJ-39393406, PNU-120596 and AVL-3288 (also known as UCI-4083), and their potential as therapeutic drugs for neuropsychiatric diseases, such as schizophrenia. PMID:26044974

  10. Alpha7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Modulate Motivation to Self-Administer Nicotine: Implications for Smoking and Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Brunzell, Darlene H; McIntosh, J Michael

    2012-01-01

    Individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia have an exceptionally high risk for tobacco dependence. Postmortem studies show that these individuals have significant reductions in α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in several brain areas. Decreased α7-mediated function might not only be linked to schizophrenia but also to increased tobacco consumption. The purpose of this study was to determine whether pharmacological blockade of α7 nAChRs would increase motivation of rats to intravenously self-administer nicotine (NIC) during a progressive ratio schedule of reinforcement (PR). Before PR, rats received local infusions of 0, 10, or 20 pmol of a selective α7 nAChR antagonist, α-conotoxin ArIB [V11L,V16D] (ArIB) into the nucleus accumbens (NAc) shell or the anterior cingulate cortex, brain areas that contribute to motivation for drug reward. We additionally sought to determine whether local infusion of 0, 10, or 40 nmol of a selective α7 nAChR agonist, PNU 282987, into these brain areas would decrease motivation for NIC use. Infusion of ArIB into the NAc shell and anterior cingulate cortex resulted in a significant increase in active lever pressing, breakpoints, and NIC intake, suggesting that a decrease in α7 nAChR function increases motivation to work for NIC. In contrast, PNU 282987 infusion resulted in reductions in these measures when administered into the NAc shell, but had no effect after administration into the anterior cingulate cortex. These data identify reduction of α7 nAChR function as a potential mechanism for elevated tobacco use in schizophrenia and also identify activation of α7 nAChRs as a potential strategy for tobacco cessation therapy. PMID:22169946

  11. 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

  12. Positive allosteric modulators of alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors reverse ketamine-induced schizophrenia-like deficits in rats.

    PubMed

    Nikiforuk, Agnieszka; Kos, Tomasz; Hołuj, Małgorzata; Potasiewicz, Agnieszka; Popik, Piotr

    2016-02-01

    Alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7-nAChRs) have generated great interest as targets of new pharmacological treatments for cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia. One promising recent approach is based on the use of positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) of α7-nAChRs, which demonstrate several advantages over direct agonists. Nevertheless, the efficacy of these newly introduced α7-nAChR agents has not been extensively characterised in animal models of schizophrenia. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the efficacy of type I and II PAMs, N-(5-chloro-2,4-dimethoxyphenyl)-N'-(5-methyl-3-isoxazolyl)urea (PNU-120596) and N-(4-chlorophenyl)-[[(4-chlorophenyl)amino]methylene]-3-methyl-5-isoxazoleacet-amide (CCMI), respectively, and galantamine, an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor (AChE) that also allosterically modulates nAChRs, against ketamine-induced cognitive deficits and social withdrawal in rats. The orthosteric α7-nAChR agonist octahydro-2-methyl-5-(6-phenyl-3-pyridazinyl)-pyrrolo[3,4-c]pyrrole (A-582941) was used as a positive control. Additionally, the antipsychotic activities of the tested compounds were assessed using the conditioned avoidance response (CAR) test. PNU-120596, CCMI, galantamine and A-582941 reversed ketamine-induced cognitive inflexibility, as assessed in the attentional set-shifting task (ASST). The tested compounds were also effective against ketamine-induced impairment in the novel object recognition task (NORT). PNU-120596, CCMI, and A-582941 ameliorated ketamine-induced social interaction deficits, whereas galantamine was ineffective. Moreover, all tested compounds selectively suppressed the CAR. The positive allosteric modulation of α7-nAChRs demonstrates preclinical efficacy not only against schizophrenia-like cognition impairments but also positive and negative symptoms. Therefore, the use of α7-nAChR PAMs as a potential treatment strategy in schizophrenia is supported.

  13. Auto/paracrine control of inflammatory cytokines by acetylcholine in macrophage-like U937 cells through nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Chernyavsky, Alexander I; Arredondo, Juan; Skok, Maryna; Grando, Sergei A

    2010-03-01

    Although acetylcholine (ACh) is well known for its neurotransmitter function, recent studies have indicated that it also functions as an immune cytokine that prevents macrophage activation through a 'cholinergic (nicotinic) anti-inflammatory pathway'. In this study, we used the macrophage-like U937 cells to elucidate the mechanisms of the physiologic control of cytokine production by auto/paracrine ACh through the nicotinic class of ACh receptors (nAChRs) expressed in these cells. Stimulation of cells with lipopolysaccharide up-regulated expression of alpha1, alpha4, alpha5, alpha7, alpha10, beta1 and beta3 subunits, down-regulated alpha6 and beta2 subunits, and did not alter the relative quantity of alpha9 and beta4 mRNAs. Distinct nAChR subtypes showed differential regulation of the production of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines. While inhibition of the expression of the TNF-alpha gene was mediated predominantly by the alpha-bungarotoxin sensitive nAChRs, that of the IL-6 and IL-18 genes-by the mecamylamine-sensitive nAChRs. Both the Mec- and alphaBtx-sensitive nAChRs regulated expression of the IL-1beta gene equally efficiently. Upregulation of IL-10 production by auto/paracrine ACh was mediated predominantly through alpha7 nAChR. These findings offer a new insight on how nicotinic agonists control inflammation, thus laying a groundwork for the development of novel immunomodulatory therapies based on the nAChR subtype selectivity of nicotinic agonists.

  14. Role of α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in nicotine-induced invasion and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition in human non-small cell lung cancer cells

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Xin-Jie; An, Shi-Min; Wang, Hao; Xu, Lu; Zhu, Liang; Chen, Hong-Zhuan

    2016-01-01

    Nicotine via nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) stimulates non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell invasion and epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) which underpin the cancer metastasis. However, the receptor subtype-dependent effects of nAChRs on NSCLC cell invasion and EMT, and the signaling pathway underlying the effects remain not fully defined. We identified that nicotine induced NSCLC cell invasion, migration, and EMT; the effects were suppressed by pharmacological intervention using α7-nAChR selective antagonists or by genetic intervention using α7-nAChR knockdown via RNA inference. Meanwhile, nicotine induced activation of MEK/ERK signaling in NSCLC cells; α7-nAChR antagonism or MEK/ERK signaling pathway inhibition suppressed NSCLC cell invasion and EMT marker expression. These results indicate that nicotine induces NSCLC cell invasion, migration, and EMT; the effects are mediated by α7-nAChRs and involve MEK/ERK signaling pathway. Delineating the effect of nicotine on the NSCLC cell invasion and EMT at receptor subtype level would improve the understanding of cancer biology and offer potentials for the exploitation of selective ligands for the control of the cancer metastasis. PMID:27409670

  15. Abelson Family Tyrosine Kinases Regulate the Function of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors and Nicotinic Synapses on Autonomic NeuronsS⃞

    PubMed Central

    Jayakar, Selwyn S.

    2011-01-01

    Abelson family kinases (AFKs; Abl1, Abl2) are non-receptor tyrosine kinases (NRTKs) implicated in cancer, but they also have important physiological roles that include regulating synaptic structure and function. Recent studies using Abl-deficient mice and the antileukemia drug STI571 [imatinib mesylate (Gleevec); Novartis], which potently and selectively blocks Abl kinase activity, implicate AFKs in regulating presynaptic neurotransmitter release in hippocampus and postsynaptic clustering of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in muscle. Here, we tested whether AFKs are relevant for regulating nAChRs and nAChR-mediated synapses on autonomic neurons. AFK immunoreactivity was detected in ciliary ganglion (CG) lysates and neurons, and STI571 application blocked endogenous Abl tyrosine kinase activity. With similar potency, STI571 specifically reduced whole-cell current responses generated by both nicotinic receptor subtypes present on CG neurons (α3*- and α7-nAChRs) and lowered the frequency and amplitude of α3*-nAChR-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents. Quantal analysis indicated that the synaptic perturbations were postsynaptic in origin, and confocal imaging experiments revealed they were unaccompanied by changes in nAChR clustering or alignment with presynaptic terminals. The results indicate that in autonomic neurons, Abl kinase activity normally supports postsynaptic nAChR function to sustain nAChR-mediated neurotransmission. Such consequences contrast with the influence of Abl kinase activity on presynaptic function and synaptic structure in hippocampus and muscle, respectively, demonstrating a cell-specific mechanism of action. Finally, because STI571 potently inhibits Abl kinase activity, the autonomic dysfunction side effects associated with its use as a chemotherapeutic agent may result from perturbed α3*- and/or α7-nAChR function. PMID:21502378

  16. Experimental determination of the vertical alignment between the second and third transmembrane segments of muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Mnatsakanyan, Nelli; Jansen, Michaela

    2013-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) are members of the Cys-loop ligand-gated ion channel superfamily. Muscle nAChR are heteropentamers that assemble from two α, and one each of β, γ, and δ subunits. Each subunit is composed of three domains, extracellular, transmembrane and intracellular. The transmembrane domain consists of four α-helical segments (M1–M4). Pioneering structural information was obtained using electronmicroscopy of Torpedo nAChR. The recently-solved X-ray structure of the first eukaryotic Cys-loop receptor, a truncated (intracellular domain missing) glutamate-gated chloride channel α (GluClα)showed the same overall architecture . However, a significant difference with regard to the vertical alignment between the channel-lining segment M2 and segment M3 was observed. Here we used functional studies utilizing disulfide trapping experiments in muscle nAChR to determine the spatial orientation between M2 and M3. Our results are in agreement with the vertical alignment as obtained when using the GluClα structure as a template to homology model muscle nAChR, however, they cannot be reconciled with the current Torpedo nAChR model. The vertical M2–M3 alignments as observed in X-ray structures of prokaryotic Gloeobacter violaceus ligand-gated ion channel (GLIC) and GluClα are in agreement. Our results further confirm that this alignment in Cys-loop receptors is conserved between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. PMID:23565737

  17. Structure-activity relationships of benzylidene anabaseines in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors of cockroach nerve cords.

    PubMed

    Sultana, Israt; Ikeda, Izumi; Ozoe, Yoshihisa

    2002-09-01

    Ten analogues of 6'-chloro-3-benzylideneanabaseine (CBA) bearing substituents at the ortho- and the para-positions of the phenyl group were synthesized, together with two related compounds. The affinity of the synthesized compounds for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the nerve cord of the American cockroach (Periplaneta americana L.) was examined by the radioligand binding assay using [(3)H]epibatidine (EPI), a nAChR agonist. All 12 tested compounds inhibited [(3)H]EPI binding, showing K(i) values ranging from 14.6 to 6830nM. The potency variation of para-substituted CBA analogues was explained by the steric (Delta B(1)) and electronic (sigma(p)) parameters of the para-substituents, or by the steric parameter and the charge of the N1 nitrogen atom (qN(1)). Among the CBA analogues, only two compounds containing a dimethylamino group and a methoxy group at the para-position showed high insecticidal activity against the German cockroach (Blattella germanica) when injected after pretreatment with metabolic inhibitors. High-affinity analogues of CBA might be suitable probes for use in classifying and characterizing insect nAChR subtypes.

  18. 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

  19. Conservation of neural nicotinic acetylcholine receptors from Drosophila to vertebrate central nervous systems.

    PubMed Central

    Bossy, B; Ballivet, M; Spierer, P

    1988-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) are found both in vertebrate and insect central nervous systems. We have isolated a Drosophila gene by crosshybridization with a vertebrate probe. Structural conservation of domains of the deduced protein and of intron/exon boundaries indicate that the Drosophila gene encodes an nAChR alpha-like subunit (ALS). That the Drosophila gene product most resembles the neuronal set of vertebrate nAChRs alpha-subunits is also indicated by the failure of an ALS-beta-galactosidase fusion protein to bind alpha-bungarotoxin on blots in contrast to vertebrate endplate alpha-subunit constructions. The ALS encoding gene exceeds 54 kb in length and the transcript has a very long and unusual 5' leader. As we found previously for a gene whose product is also involved in cholinergic synapses, acetylcholinesterase, the leader encodes short open reading frames, which might be involved in translation control. We also note the presence of opa repeats in the gene, as has been found for various Drosophila genes expressed in the nervous system. Images PMID:2840281

  20. Insight into the Binding Mode of Agonists of the Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor from Calculated Electron Densities

    PubMed Central

    Beck, Michael E; Gutbrod, Oliver; Matthiesen, Svend

    2015-01-01

    Insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are among the most prominent and most economically important insecticide targets. Thus, an understanding of the modes of binding of respective agonists is important for the design of specific compounds with favorable vertebrate profiles. In the case of nAChRs, the lack of available high-resolution X-ray structures leaves theoretical considerations as the only viable option. Starting from classical homology and docking approaches, binding mode hypotheses are created for five agonists of the nAChR, covering insecticides in the main group 4 of the Insecticide Resistance Action Committee (IRAC) mode of action (MoA) classification, namely, neonicotinoids, nicotine, sulfoxaflor, and butenolides. To better understand these binding modes, the topologies of calculated electron densities of small-model systems are analyzed in the framework of the quantum theory of atoms in molecules. The theoretically obtained modes of binding are very much in line with the biology-driven IRAC MoA classification of the investigated ligands. PMID:26175091

  1. Insight into the Binding Mode of Agonists of the Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor from Calculated Electron Densities.

    PubMed

    Beck, Michael E; Gutbrod, Oliver; Matthiesen, Svend

    2015-07-15

    Insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are among the most prominent and most economically important insecticide targets. Thus, an understanding of the modes of binding of respective agonists is important for the design of specific compounds with favorable vertebrate profiles. In the case of nAChRs, the lack of available high-resolution X-ray structures leaves theoretical considerations as the only viable option. Starting from classical homology and docking approaches, binding mode hypotheses are created for five agonists of the nAChR, covering insecticides in the main group 4 of the Insecticide Resistance Action Committee (IRAC) mode of action (MoA) classification, namely, neonicotinoids, nicotine, sulfoxaflor, and butenolides. To better understand these binding modes, the topologies of calculated electron densities of small-model systems are analyzed in the framework of the quantum theory of atoms in molecules. The theoretically obtained modes of binding are very much in line with the biology-driven IRAC MoA classification of the investigated ligands.

  2. Molecular characterisation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits from the cat flea, Ctenocephalides felis (Siphonaptera: Pulicidae).

    PubMed

    Bass, Chris; Lansdell, Stuart J; Millar, Neil S; Schroeder, Iris; Turberg, Andreas; Field, Linda M; Williamson, Martin S

    2006-01-01

    As part of a program to monitor the susceptibility of cat flea populations to the insecticide imidacloprid we have examined the cat flea nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, the target site protein of the neonicotinoid group of insecticides. Seven nAChR subunits (six alpha-type and one beta-type) were identified in cat flea using a degenerate PCR-based strategy. Five of these were expressed in vitro by creating chimeras containing the N-terminal ligand-binding domain of the cat flea subunits and the C-terminal region of the Drosophila Dalpha2 (SAD) subunit. Two of the five chimeric subunits, Cfalpha1/Dalpha2 and Cfalpha3/Dalpha2, when co-expressed with rat beta2 in Drosophila S2 cells, showed high-affinity binding of both epibatidine (Kd=1.6+/-0.6 and 0.13+/-0.06nM, respectively), and imidacloprid (Ki=142+/-34 and 28.7+/-2.4nM, respectively). It is likely therefore that Cfalpha1 and Cfalpha3 contribute to nAChR populations in vivo that are sensitive to imidacloprid. The identification of cat flea nAChR subunits that have a high affinity for imidacloprid presents candidate genes in which to look for resistance-associated mutations if target-site resistance to imidacloprid arises in domestic pet flea populations.

  3. The analgesic-like properties of the alpha7 nAChR silent agonist NS6740 is associated with non-conducting conformations of the receptor

    PubMed Central

    Papke, Roger L.; Bagdas, Deniz; Kulkarni, Abhijit R.; Gould, Timothy; AlSharari, Shakir D.; Thakur, Ganesh A.; Damaj, M. Imad

    2014-01-01

    The α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) is a promising drug target for a number of neurological disorders including chronic pain and inflammatory diseases. Since α7 can function as a ligand-gated ion channel, drug development initially focused on ligands that were selective activators of the α7 ion channel. However, the best α7 drugs for chronic pain and inflammation indications may not be ion channel activators but rather “silent agonists”, which bind to the receptor but preferentially induce non-conducting states that modulate signal transduction in non-neuronal cells. One such compound is NS6740. We show that NS6740 selectively induces prolonged desensitization of α7 nAChRs. There are two forms of α7 desensitization that can be distinguished by their sensitivity to the positive allosteric modulators (PAMs). At high concentrations, NS6740 preferentially induces PAM-insensitive desensitization, which over the course of several minutes reverts to the sensitive form. NS6740 was tested in several pain models after in vivo administration in the mouse. Although it had no effects in acute thermal pain, NS6740 induced significant dose- and time-dependent antinociceptive activity in formalin- and acetic acid-induced nociceptive behaviors as well as in the chronic constrictive nerve injury (CCI) model for neuropathic pain. The antinociceptive activity of NS6740 in these models was α7-dependent. In addition, NS6740 administration reversed pain-induced aversion, an important affective component of pain. The time and concentration dependence of the effects were consistent with NS6740 induction of PAM-insensitive non-conducting states, suggesting that signal transduction required for analgesia is accomplished by α7 receptors in that conformation. PMID:25497451

  4. The conformation of acetylcholine at its target site in the membrane-embedded nicotinic acetylcholine receptor

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, P. T. F.; Verhoeven, A.; Miller, K. W.; Meier, B. H.; Watts, A.

    2007-01-01

    The conformation of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine bound to the fully functional nicotinic acetylcholine receptor embedded in its native membrane environment has been characterized by using frequency-selective recoupling solid-state NMR. Six dipolar couplings among five resolved 13C-labeled atoms of acetylcholine were measured. Bound acetylcholine adopts a bent conformation characterized with a quaternary ammonium-to-carbonyl distance of 5.1 Å. In this conformation, and with its orientation constrained to that previously determined by us, the acetylcholine could be docked satisfactorily in the agonist pocket of the agonist-bound, but not the agonist-free, crystal structure of a soluble acetylcholine-binding protein from Lymnaea stagnali. The quaternary ammonium group of the acetylcholine was determined to be within 3.9 Å of five aromatic residues and its acetyl group close to residues C187/188 of the principle and residue L112 of the complementary subunit. The observed >CO chemical shift is consistent with H bonding to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor residues γY116 and δT119 that are homologous to L112 in the soluble acetylcholine-binding protein. PMID:17989232

  5. Cross-reactivity of acid-sensing ion channel and Na⁺-H⁺ exchanger antagonists with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Santos-Torres, Julio; Ślimak, Marta A; Auer, Sebastian; Ibañez-Tallon, Inés

    2011-11-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are widely distributed throughout the mammalian central and peripheral nervous systems, where they contribute to neuronal excitability and synaptic communication. It has been reported that nAChRs are modulated by BK channels and that BK channels, in turn, are inhibited by acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs). Here we investigate the possible functional interaction between these channels in medial habenula (MHb) neurones. We report that selective antagonists of large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels and ASIC1a channels, paxilline and psalmotoxin 1, respectively, did not induce detectable changes in nicotine-evoked currents. In contrast, the non-selective ASIC and Na(+)-H(+) exchanger (NHE1) antagonists, amiloride and its analogues, suppressed nicotine-evoked responses in MHb neurones of wild-type and ASIC2 null mice, excluding a possible involvement of ASIC2 in the nAChR inhibition by amiloride. Zoniporide, a more selective inhibitor of NHE1, reversibly inhibited α3β4-, α7- and α4-containing (*) nAChRs in Xenopus oocytes and in brain slices, as well as in PS120 cells deficient in NHE1 and virally transduced with nAChRs, suggesting a generalized effect of zoniporide in most neuronal nAChR subtypes. Independently from nAChR antagonism, zoniporide profoundly blocked synaptic transmission onto MHb neurones without affecting glutamatergic and GABA receptors. Taken together, these results indicate that amiloride and zoniporide, which are clinically used to treat hypertension and cardiovascular disease, have an inhibitory effect on neuronal nAChRs when used experimentally at high doses. The possible cross-reactivity of these compounds with nAChRs in vivo will require further investigation.

  6. Tropisetron sensitizes α7 containing nicotinic receptors to low levels of acetylcholine in vitro and improves memory-related task performance in young and aged animals.

    PubMed

    Callahan, Patrick M; Bertrand, Daniel; Bertrand, Sonia; Plagenhoef, Marc R; Terry, Alvin V

    2017-03-01

    Tropisetron, a 5-HT3 receptor antagonist commonly prescribed for chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting also exhibits high affinity, partial agonist activity at α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7 nAChRs). α7 nAChRs are considered viable therapeutic targets for neuropsychiatric disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here we further explored the nAChR pharmacology of tropisetron to include the homomeric α7 nAChR and recently characterized heteromeric α7β2 nAChR (1:10 ratio) and we evaluated its cognitive effects in young and aged animals. Electrophysiological studies on human nAChRs expressed in Xenopus oocytes confirmed the partial agonist activity of tropisetron at α7 nAChRs (EC50 ∼2.4 μM) with a similar effect at α7β2 nAChRs (EC50 ∼1.5 μM). Moreover, currents evoked by irregular pulses of acetylcholine (40 μM) at α7 and α7β2 nAChRs were enhanced during sustained exposure to low concentrations of tropisetron (10 and 30 nM) indicative of a "priming" or co-agonist effect. Tropisetron (0.1-10 mg/kg) improved novel object recognition performance in young Sprague-Dawley rats and in aged Fischer rats. In aged male and female rhesus monkeys, tropisetron (0.03-1 mg/kg) produced a 17% increase from baseline levels in delayed match to sample long delay accuracy while combination of non-effective doses of donepezil (0.1 mg/kg) and tropisetron (0.03 and 0.1 mg/kg) produced a 24% change in accuracy. Collectively, these animal experiments indicate that tropisetron enhances cognition and has the ability to improve the effective dose range of currently prescribed AD therapy (donepezil). Moreover, these effects may be explained by tropisetron's ability to sensitize α7 containing nAChRs to low levels of acetylcholine.

  7. Acetylcholine and the alpha 7 nicotinic receptor: a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of periodontal disease?

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Objectives The aim of this review is to examine the evidence for a functional cholinergic system operating within the periodontium and determine the evidence for its role in periodontal immunity. Introduction Acetylcholine can influence the immune system via the ‘cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway’. This pathway is mediated by the vagus nerve which releases acetylcholine to interact with the α7 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) on proximate immuno-regulatory cells. Activation of the α7nAChR on these cells leads to down-regulated expression of pro-inflammatory mediators and thus regulates localised inflammatory responses. The role of the vagus nerve in periodontal pathophysiology is currently unknown. However, non-neuronal cells can also release acetylcholine and express the α7nAChR; these include keratinocytes, fibroblasts, T cells, B cells and macrophages. Therefore, by both autocrine and paracrine methods non-neuronal acetylcholine can also be hypothesised to modulate the localised immune response. Methods A Pubmed database search was performed for studies providing evidence for a functional cholinergic system operating in the periodontium. In addition, literature on the role of the ‘cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway’ in modulating the immune response was extrapolated to hypothesise that similar mechanisms of immune regulation occur within the periodontium. Conclusion The evidence suggests a functional nonneuronal ‘cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway’ may operate in the periodontium and that this may be targeted therapeutically to treat periodontal disease. PMID:22777144

  8. Human Secreted Ly-6/uPAR Related Protein-1 (SLURP-1) Is a Selective Allosteric Antagonist of α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Kudryavtsev, Denis; Bychkov, Maxim L.; Kulbatskii, Dmitrii S.; Kasheverov, Igor E.; Astapova, Maria V.; Feofanov, Alexey V.; Thomsen, Morten S.; Mikkelsen, Jens D.; Shenkarev, Zakhar O.; Tsetlin, Victor I.; Dolgikh, Dmitry A.; Kirpichnikov, Mikhail P.

    2016-01-01

    SLURP-1 is a secreted toxin-like Ly-6/uPAR protein found in epithelium, sensory neurons and immune cells. Point mutations in the slurp-1 gene cause the autosomal inflammation skin disease Mal de Meleda. SLURP-1 is considered an autocrine/paracrine hormone that regulates growth and differentiation of keratinocytes and controls inflammation and malignant cell transformation. The majority of previous studies of SLURP-1 have been made using fusion constructs containing, in addition to the native protein, extra polypeptide sequences. Here we describe the activity and pharmacological profile of a recombinant analogue of human SLURP-1 (rSLURP-1) differing from the native protein only by one additional N-terminal Met residue. rSLURP-1 significantly inhibited proliferation (up to ~ 40%, EC50 ~ 4 nM) of human oral keratinocytes (Het-1A cells). Application of mecamylamine and atropine,—non-selective inhibitors of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, respectively, and anti-α7-nAChRs antibodies revealed α7 type nAChRs as an rSLURP-1 target in keratinocytes. Using affinity purification from human cortical extracts, we confirmed that rSLURP-1 binds selectively to the α7-nAChRs. Exposure of Xenopus oocytes expressing α7-nAChRs to rSLURP-1 caused a significant non-competitive inhibition of the response to acetylcholine (up to ~ 70%, IC50 ~ 1 μM). It was shown that rSLURP-1 binds to α7-nAChRs overexpressed in GH4Cl cells, but does not compete with 125I-α-bungarotoxin for binding to the receptor. These findings imply an allosteric antagonist-like mode of SLURP-1 interaction with α7-nAChRs outside the classical ligand-binding site. Contrary to rSLURP-1, other inhibitors of α7-nAChRs (mecamylamine, α-bungarotoxin and Lynx1) did not suppress the proliferation of keratinocytes. Moreover, the co-application of α-bungarotoxin with rSLURP-1 did not influence antiproliferative activity of the latter. This supports the hypothesis that

  9. Effect of α{sub 7} nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists and antagonists on motor function in mice

    SciTech Connect

    Welch, Kevin D.; Green, Benedict T.; Gardner, Dale R.

    2013-02-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are ligand-gated cation channels found throughout the body, and serve to mediate diverse physiological functions. Muscle-type nAChRs located in the motor endplate region of muscle fibers play an integral role in muscle contraction and thus motor function. The toxicity and teratogenicity of many plants (which results in millions of dollars in losses annually to the livestock industry) are due to various toxins that bind to nAChRs including deltaline and methyllycaconitine (MLA) from larkspur (Delphinium) species, and nicotine and anabasine from tobacco (Nicotiana) species. The primary result of the actions of these alkaloids at nAChRs is neuromuscular paralysis and respiratory failure. The objective of this study was to further characterize the motor coordination deficiencies that occur upon exposure to a non-lethal dose of nAChR antagonists MLA and deltaline as well as nAChR agonists nicotine and anabasine. We evaluated the effect of nAChR agonists and antagonists on the motor function and coordination in mice using a balance beam, grip strength meter, rotarod, open field analysis and tremor monitor. These analyses demonstrated that within seconds after treatment the mice had significant loss of motor function and coordination that lasted up to 1 min, followed by a short period of quiescence. Recovery to normal muscle coordination was rapid, typically within approximately 10 min post-dosing. However, mice treated with the nAChR agonist nicotine and anabasine required a slightly longer time to recover some aspects of normal muscle function in comparison to mice treated with the nAChR antagonist MLA or deltaline. -- Highlights: ► Mice treated with nAChR agonists and antagonists have a loss in motor function. ► These deficits are temporary as near normal motor function returns within 10 min. ► There are compound-specific differences in the effects on motor function.

  10. Effects of dichlorobenzene on acetylcholine receptors in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells.

    PubMed

    Yan, Ren-Ming; Chiung, Yin-Mei; Pan, Chien-Yuan; Liu, Jenn-Hwa; Liu, Pei-Shan

    2008-11-20

    para-Dichlorobenzene (DCB), a deodorant and an industrial chemical, is a highly volatile compound and is known to be an indoor air contaminant. Because of its widespread use and volatility, the toxicity of DCB presents a concern to industrial workers and public. Some toxic aspects of DCB have already been focused but its effects on neuronal signal transduction have been hitherto unknown. The effects of DCB on the cytosolic calcium homeostasis are investigated in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells in this study. DCB, above 200 microM, was found to induce a rise in cytosolic calcium concentration that could not be counteracted by nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) and muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) antagonists but was partially inhibited by thapsigargin. To understand the actions of DCB on the acetylcholine receptors, we investigated its effects on the changes of cytosolic calcium concentration following nicotinic AChR stimulation with epibatidine and muscarinic AChR stimulation with methacholine in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells. DCB inhibited the cytosolic calcium concentration rise induced by epibatidine and methacholine with respective IC(50)s of 34 and 294 microM. The inhibitions of DCB were not the same as thapsigargin's inhibition. In the electrophysiological observations, DCB blocked the influx currents induced by epibatidine. Our findings suggest that DCB interferes with the functional activities of AChR, including its coupling influx currents and cytosolic calcium elevations.

  11. A Novel α2/α4 Subtype-selective Positive Allosteric Modulator of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Acting from the C-tail of an α Subunit*

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jingyi; Kuryatov, Alexander; Jin, Zhuang; Norleans, Jack; Kamenecka, Theodore M.; Kenny, Paul J.; Lindstrom, Jon

    2015-01-01

    Positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) are important therapeutic candidates as well as valuable research tools. We identified a novel type II PAM, (R)-7-bromo-N-(piperidin-3-yl)benzo[b]thiophene-2-carboxamide (Br-PBTC), which both increases activation and reactivates desensitized nAChRs. This compound increases acetylcholine-evoked responses of α2* and α4* nAChRs but is without effect on α3* or α6* nAChRs (* indicates the presence of other nAChR subunits). Br-BPTC acts from the C-terminal extracellular sequences of α4 subunits, which is also a PAM site for steroid hormone estrogens such as 17β-estradiol. Br-PBTC is much more potent than estrogens. Like 17β-estradiol, the non-steroid Br-PBTC only requires one α4 subunit to potentiate nAChR function, and its potentiation is stronger with more α4 subunits. This feature enables Br-BPTC to potentiate activation of (α4β2)(α6β2)β3 but not (α6β2)2β3 nAChRs. Therefore, this compound is potentially useful in vivo for determining functions of different α6* nAChR subtypes. Besides activation, Br-BPTC affects desensitization of nAChRs induced by sustained exposure to agonists. After minutes of exposure to agonists, Br-PBTC reactivated short term desensitized nAChRs that have at least two α4 subunits but not those with only one. Three α4 subunits were required for Br-BPTC to reactivate long term desensitized nAChRs. These data suggest that higher PAM occupancy promotes channel opening more efficiently and overcomes short and long term desensitization. This C-terminal extracellular domain could be a target for developing subtype or state-selective drugs for nAChRs. PMID:26432642

  12. Characterization of the retina in the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor knockout mouse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Marci L.

    Acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) are involved in visual processing and are expressed by inner retinal neurons in all species studied to date (Keyser et al., 2000; Dmitrieva et al., 2007; Liu et al., 2009), but their distribution in the mouse retina remains unknown. Reductions in alpha7 nicotinic AChRs (nAChRs) are thought to contribute to memory and visual deficits observed in Alzheimer's and schizophrenia (Coyle et al., 1983; Nordberg et al., 1999; Leonard et al., 2006). However, the alpha7 nAChR knockout (KO) mouse has a mild phenotype (Paylor et al., 1998; Fernandes et al., 2006; Young et al., 2007; Origlia et al., 2012). The purpose of this study was to determine the expression of AChRs in wildtype (WT) mouse retina and to assess whether up-regulation of other AChRs in the alpha7 nAChR KO retina may explain the minimal deficits described in the KO mouse. Reverse-transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) showed that mRNA transcripts for alpha2-7, alpha 9, alpha10, beta2-4 nAChR subunits and m1-m5 muscarinic AChR (mAChR) subtypes were present in WT murine retina. Western blot analysis confirmed the presence of alpha3-5, alpha9, and m1-m5 AChR proteins and immunohistochemical analysis demonstrated nAChR and mAChR proteins expressed by subsets of bipolar, amacrine and ganglion cells. This is the first reported expression of alpha9 and alpha10 nAChR transcripts and alpha9 nAChR proteins in the retina of any species. Quantitative RT-PCR (qPCR) showed changes in AChR transcript expression in the alpha7 nAChR KO mouse retina relative to WT. Within whole retina alpha2, alpha9, alpha10, beta4, m1 and m4 AChR transcripts were up-regulated, while alpha5 nAChR transcripts were down-regulated. However, cell populations showed subtle differences; m4 mAChR transcripts were up-regulated in the ganglion cell layer and outer portion of the inner nuclear layer (oINL),while beta4 nAChR transcript up-regulation was limited to the oINL. Surprisingly, alpha2, alpha9, beta4, m2 and m4 transcripts were

  13. Effects of nonylphenol on the calcium signal and catecholamine secretion coupled with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in bovine adrenal chromaffin cells.

    PubMed

    Liu, Pei-Shan; Liu, Ging-Hui; Chao, Wei-Liang

    2008-02-03

    Nonylphenol (NP) is the most critical metabolite of alkylphenol polyethoxylate detergents. NP is known as an endocrine disruptor with estrogenic activities and as an inhibitor of endoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+)-ATPase. Estrogen has modulatory roles on ligand-gated ion channels, such as nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Ca(2+)-ATPase inhibitors can modulate the cytosolic calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)](c)]) and thus can affect the calcium signaling coupled with nAChRs. Therefore, NP is predicted to have complex effects on the Ca(2+) signaling and secretion coupled with nAChRs. This study investigated these effects using bovine adrenal chromaffin cells. The results show that NP suppressed the Ca(2+) signaling coupled with nAChRs and voltage-operated Ca(2+) channels in a dose-dependent manner, with IC(50)s of 1 and 5.9 microM, respectively. Estradiol exhibits similar suppression but much lower inhibitory potencies. NP alone induced a transient rise in [Ca(2+)](c) in the presence or absence of extracellular calcium. Thapsigargin, an endoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+)-ATPase inhibitor, partially suppressed the [Ca(2+)](c) rise induced by NP, but NP totally blocked the [Ca(2+)](c) rise induced by thapsigargin. This illustrates that NP can cause Ca(2+) release from thapsigargin-insensitive pools. Thapsigargin suppressed the Ca(2+) signaling coupled with nAChRs but increased that coupled with voltage-operated Ca(2+) channels. We propose that three routes are responsible for the effects of NP on nAChRs: named receptor channels, voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels, and Ca(2+)-induced Ca(2+) release. Three routes are related to the characteristics of NP as steroid-like compounds and Ca(2+)-ATPase inhibitor.

  14. Methanandamide allosterically inhibits in vivo the function of peripheral nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing the alpha 7-subunit.

    PubMed

    Baranowska, Urszula; Göthert, Manfred; Rudz, Radoslaw; Malinowska, Barbara

    2008-09-01

    Methanandamide (MAEA), the stable analog of the endocannabinoid anandamide, has been proven in Xenopus oocytes to allosterically inhibit the function of the alpha7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in a cannabinoid (CB) receptor-independent manner. The present study aimed at demonstrating that this mechanism can be activated in vivo. In anesthetized and vagotomized pithed rats treated with atropine, we determined the tachycardic response to electrical stimulation of preganglionic sympathetic nerves via the pithing rod or to i.v. nicotine (0.7 micromol/kg) activating nAChRs on the cardiac postganglionic sympathetic neurons. MAEA (3 and 10 micromol/kg) inhibited the electrically induced tachycardia (maximally by 15-20%; abolished by the CB(1) receptor antagonist AM 251 [N-(piperidin-1-yl)-5-(4-iodophenyl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-4-methyl-1H-pyrazole-3-carboxamide]; 3 micromol/kg) in pentobarbitone-anesthetized pithed rats, but not in urethane-anesthetized pithed rats, which, thus, are suitable to study the CB(1) receptor-independent inhibition of nicotine-evoked tachycardia. The subunit-nonselective nAChR antagonist hexamethonium (100 micromol/kg) and the selective alpha7-subunit antagonist methyllycaconitine (MLA; 3 and 10 micromol/kg) decreased the nicotine-induced tachycardia by 100 and 40%, respectively (maximal effects), suggesting that nAChRs containing the alpha7-subunit account for 40% of the nicotine-induced tachycardia. MAEA (3 micromol/kg) produced an AM 251-insensitive inhibition (maximum again by 40%) of the nicotine-induced tachycardia. Simultaneous or sequential coadministration of MLA and MAEA inhibited the nicotine-induced tachycardia to the same extent (maximally by 40%) as each of the drugs alone. In conclusion, according to nonadditivity of the effects, MAEA mediates in vivo inhibition by the same receptors as MLA, namely alpha7-subunit-containing nAChRs, although at an allosteric instead of the orthosteric site.

  15. Colorimetric microtiter plate receptor-binding assay for the detection of freshwater and marine neurotoxins targeting the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rubio, Fernando; Kamp, Lisa; Carpino, Justin; Faltin, Erin; Loftin, Keith A.; Molgó, Jordi; Aráoz, Rómulo

    2014-01-01

    Anatoxin-a and homoanatoxin-a, produced by cyanobacteria, are agonists of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Pinnatoxins, spirolides, and gymnodimines, produced by dinoflagellates, are antagonists of nAChRs. In this study we describe the development and validation of a competitive colorimetric, high throughput functional assay based on the mechanism of action of freshwater and marine toxins against nAChRs. Torpedo electrocyte membranes (rich in muscle-type nAChR) were immobilized and stabilized on the surface of 96-well microtiter plates. Biotinylated α-bungarotoxin (the tracer) and streptavidin-horseradish peroxidase (the detector) enabled the detection and quantitation of anatoxin-a in surface waters and cyclic imine toxins in shellfish extracts that were obtained from different locations across the US. The method compares favorably to LC/MS/MS and provides accurate results for anatoxin-a and cyclic imine toxins monitoring. Study of common constituents at the concentrations normally found in drinking and environmental waters, as well as the tolerance to pH, salt, solvents, organic and inorganic compounds did not significantly affect toxin detection. The assay allowed the simultaneous analysis of up to 25 samples within 3.5 h and it is well suited for on-site or laboratory monitoring of low levels of toxins in drinking, surface, and ground water as well as in shellfish extracts.

  16. Solution structure of {alpha}-conotoxin PIA, a novel antagonist of {alpha}6 subunit containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    SciTech Connect

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

    2005-12-30

    {alpha}-Conotoxin PIA is a novel nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) antagonist isolated from Conus purpurascens that targets nAChR subtypes containing {alpha}6 and {alpha}3 subunits. {alpha}-conotoxin PIA displays 75-fold higher affinity for rat {alpha}6/{alpha}3{beta}2{beta}3 nAChRs than for rat {alpha}3{beta}2 nAChRs. We have determined the three-dimensional structure of {alpha}-conotoxin PIA by nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. The {alpha}-conotoxin PIA has an '{omega}-shaped' overall topology as other {alpha}4/7 subfamily conotoxins. Yet, unlike other neuronally targeted {alpha}4/7-conotoxins, its N-terminal tail Arg{sup 1}-Asp{sup 2}-Pro{sup 3} protrudes out of its main molecular body because Asp{sup 2}-Pro{sup 3}-Cys{sup 4}-Cys{sup 5} forms a stable type I {beta}-turn. In addition, a kink introduced by Pro{sup 15} in the second loop of this toxin provides a distinct steric and electrostatic environment from those in {alpha}-conotoxins MII and GIC. By comparing the structure of {alpha}-conotoxin PIA with other functionally related {alpha}-conotoxins we suggest structural features in {alpha}-conotoxin PIA that may be associated with its unique receptor recognition profile.

  17. Docking of 6-chloropyridazin-3-yl derivatives active on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors into molluscan acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP).

    PubMed

    Artali, Roberto; Bombieri, Gabriella; Meneghetti, Fiorella

    2005-04-01

    The crystal structure of Acetylcholine Binding Protein (AChBP), homolog of the ligand binding domain of nAChR, has been used as model for computational investigations on the ligand-receptor interactions of derivatives of 6-chloropyridazine substituted at C3 with 3,8-diazabicyclo[3.2.1]octane, 2,5-diazabicyclo[2.2.1]heptane and with piperazine and homopiperazine, substituted or not at N4. The ligand-receptor complexes have been analyzed by docking techniques using the binding site of HEPES complexed with AChBP as template. The good relationship between the observed binding affinity and the calculated docking energy confirms that this model provides a good starting point for understanding the binding domain of neuronal nicotinic receptors. An analysis of the possible factors significant for the ligand recognition has evidenced, besides the cation-pi interaction, the distance between the chlorine atom of the pyridazinyl group and the carbonylic oxygen of Leu B112 as an important parameter in the modulation of the binding energy.

  18. Agonist actions of neonicotinoids on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed by cockroach neurons.

    PubMed

    Tan, Jianguo; Galligan, James J; Hollingworth, Robert M

    2007-07-01

    The agonist actions of seven commercial neonicotinoid insecticides and nicotine were studied on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed by neurons isolated from the three thoracic ganglia of the American cockroach, Periplaneta americana. Single electrode voltage clamp recording was used to measure agonist-induced inward currents. Acetylcholine, nicotine and all neonicotinoids tested, except thiamethoxam, caused inward currents which were blocked reversibly by methyllycaconitine, a nAChR antagonist. Based on maximum inward currents, neonicotinoids could be divided into two subgroups: (1) those with a heterocyclic ring in their electronegative pharmacophore moiety (i.e. nicotine, imidacloprid and thiacloprid) were relatively weak partial agonists causing only 20-25% of the maximum ACh current and (2) open chain compounds (i.e. acetamiprid, dinotefuran, nitenpyram, and clothiandin) which were much more effective agonists producing 60-100% of the maximum ACh current. These compounds also elicited different symptoms of poisoning in American cockroaches with excitatory responses evident for the low efficacy agonists but depressive and paralytic responses predominating for the most efficacious agonists. No correlation was observed between agonist affinity and efficacy on these nAChRs. Thiamethoxam, even at 100 microM, failed to cause an inward current and showed no competitive interaction with other neonicotinoids on nAChRs, indicating that it is not a direct-acting agonist or antagonist. Despite the probable presence of multiple subtypes of nAChRs on cockroach neurons, competition studies between neonicotinoids did not reveal evidence that separate binding sites exist for the tested compounds. The size of inward currents induced by co-application of neonicotinoid pairs at equal concentration (100 microM) were predominantly determined by the one with higher binding affinity as indicated by EC(50) values, rather than by the one with higher binding efficacy as

  19. Nicotine at concentrations found in cigarette smokers activates and desensitizes nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in CA1 interneurons of rat hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Alkondon, M; Pereira, E F; Almeida, L E; Randall, W R; Albuquerque, E X

    2000-10-01

    Behavioral effects of cigarette smoking are attributed to the interactions of nicotine with brain nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). However, the mechanisms by which nAChR function in developing and mature brain is affected by a smoker's level of nicotine (50-500 nM) remain unclear. Thus, the objective of this study was to determine the concentration- and time-dependent effects of nicotine on alpha7 and alpha4beta2 nAChRs, the two major brain subtypes, natively expressed in CA1 interneurons of rat hippocampal slices. Only at concentrations > or =5 microM did nicotine (applied for 6-60 s) elicit action potentials or measurable whole-cell currents (EC(50)=158 microM) in stratum radiatum interneurons that express alpha7 nAChRs. Continuous exposure for 10-15 min of the neurons to nicotine (0.5-2.5 microM) inhibited alpha7 nAChR-mediated currents (IC(50)=640 nM) evoked by choline (10 mM). Nicotine (> or =0.125 microM) applied to the neurons for 1-5 min induced slowly desensitizing whole-cell currents (EC(50)=3.2 microM) in stratum lacunosum moleculare interneurons; this effect was mediated by alpha4beta2 nAChRs. Also via activation of alpha4beta2 nAChRs, nicotine (0.125-0.5 microM) increased the frequency and amplitude of GABAergic postsynaptic currents (PSCs) in stratum radiatum interneurons. However, exposure of the neurons for 10-15 min to nicotine (0.25-0.5 microM) resulted in desensitization of alpha4beta2 nAChRs. It is suggested that nanomolar concentrations of nicotine after acute intake suppress inhibitory inputs to pyramidal cells through a disinhibitory mechanism involving activation of alpha4beta2 nAChRs and desensitization of alpha7 nAChRs, and after chronic intake leads to up-regulation of both receptor subtypes via desensitization. These findings have direct implications to the actions of nicotine in cigarette smokers.

  20. Differential Effects of Quercetin and Quercetin Glycosides on Human α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor-Mediated Ion Currents

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Byung-Hwan; Choi, Sun-Hye; Kim, Hyeon-Joong; Jung, Seok-Won; Hwang, Sung-Hee; Pyo, Mi-Kyung; Rhim, Hyewhon; Kim, Hyoung-Chun; Kim, Ho-Kyoung; Lee, Sang-Mok; Nah, Seung-Yeol

    2016-01-01

    Quercetin is a flavonoid usually found in fruits and vegetables. Aside from its antioxidative effects, quercetin, like other flavonoids, has a various neuropharmacological actions. Quercetin-3-O-rhamnoside (Rham1), quercetin-3-O-rutinoside (Rutin), and quercetin-3-(2(G)-rhamnosylrutinoside (Rham2) are mono-, di-, and tri-glycosylated forms of quercetin, respectively. In a previous study, we showed that quercetin can enhance α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7 nAChR)-mediated ion currents. However, the role of the carbohydrates attached to quercetin in the regulation of α7 nAChR channel activity has not been determined. In the present study, we investigated the effects of quercetin glycosides on the acetylcholine induced peak inward current (IACh) in Xenopus oocytes expressing the α7 nAChR. IACh was measured with a two-electrode voltage clamp technique. In oocytes injected with α7 nAChR copy RNA, quercetin enhanced IACh, whereas quercetin glycosides inhibited IACh. Quercetin glycosides mediated an inhibition of IACh, which increased when they were pre-applied and the inhibitory effects were concentration dependent. The order of IACh inhibition by quercetin glycosides was Rutin≥Rham1>Rham2. Quercetin glycosides-mediated IACh enhancement was not affected by ACh concentration and appeared voltage-independent. Furthermore, quercetin-mediated IACh inhibition can be attenuated when quercetin is co-applied with Rham1 and Rutin, indicating that quercetin glycosides could interfere with quercetin-mediated α7 nAChR regulation and that the number of carbohydrates in the quercetin glycoside plays a key role in the interruption of quercetin action. These results show that quercetin and quercetin glycosides regulate the α7 nAChR in a differential manner. PMID:27098860

  1. Structural mechanisms for α-conotoxin activity at the human α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor

    PubMed Central

    Abraham, Nikita; Healy, Michael; Ragnarsson, Lotten; Brust, Andreas; Alewood, Paul F.; Lewis, Richard J.

    2017-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) are therapeutic targets for a range of human diseases. α-Conotoxins are naturally occurring peptide antagonists of nAChRs that have been used as pharmacological probes and investigated as drug leads for nAChR related disorders. However, α-conotoxin interactions have been mostly characterised at the α7 and α3β2 nAChRs, with interactions at other subtypes poorly understood. This study provides novel structural insights into the molecular basis for α-conotoxin activity at α3β4 nAChR, a therapeutic target where subtype specific antagonists have potential to treat nicotine addiction and lung cancer. A co-crystal structure of α-conotoxin LsIA with Lymnaea stagnalis acetylcholine binding protein guided the design and functional characterisations of LsIA analogues that identified the minimum pharmacophore regulating α3β4 antagonism. Interactions of the LsIA R10F with β4 K57 and the conserved –NN– α-conotoxin motif with β4 I77 and I109 conferred α3β4 activity to the otherwise inactive LsIA. Using these structural insights, we designed LsIA analogues with α3β4 activity. This new understanding of the structural basis of protein-protein interactions between α-conotoxins and α3β4 may help rationally guide the development of α3β4 selective antagonists with therapeutic potential. PMID:28361878

  2. Plasticity in Brainstem Mechanisms of Pain Modulation by Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in the Rat

    PubMed Central

    White, Stephanie R.

    2017-01-01

    Individuals with chronic pain may be driven to smoke more because the analgesic efficacy of nicotine diminishes. To determine whether persistent pain diminishes the actions of a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) agonist in pain modulatory pathways, we examined the effects of epibatidine in the rostral ventromedial medulla (RVM) of rats with and without inflammatory injury induced by intraplantar injection of complete Freund’s adjuvant (CFA). In uninjured rats, epibatidine produced a dose-dependent antinociception that was completely blocked by dihydro-β-erythroidine (DHβE; α4β2 antagonist) and partially blocked by methyllycaconitine (MLA; α7 antagonist). Epibatidine reversed heat hyperalgesia when microinjected in the RVM 4 h, 4 d, or 2 weeks after CFA treatment. Although DHβE completely blocked epibatidine’s antihyperalgesic effect at 4 h, at 2 weeks it elicited only partial antagonism. Methyllycaconitine was ineffective at both time points. Epibatidine’s antinociceptive efficacy in the uninjured hind paw progressively declined, and it was without effect 2 weeks after CFA. Moreover, as early as 4 h after CFA, the antinociceptive effect of epibatidine was no longer antagonized by DHβE. Neither antagonist alone altered paw withdrawal latency in uninjured or CFA-treated rats, suggesting that neither α4β2 nor α7 nAChRs are tonically active in the RVM. The Bmax and Kd of α4β2 nAChRs in the RVM were unchanged after CFA treatment. These observations provide the first evidence of pharmacological plasticity of the actions of α4β2 nAChR agonists in a critical brainstem pain modulatory pathway and may in part explain why people with chronic pain smoke more than the general population. PMID:28197544

  3. Interaction of dinotefuran and its analogues with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors of cockroach nerve cords.

    PubMed

    Mori, Kazuki; Okumoto, Takashi; Kawahara, Nobuyuki; Ozoe, Yoshihisa

    2002-02-01

    To investigate the action of dinotefuran (MTI-446, 1-methyl-2-nitro-3-(tetrahydro-3-furylmethyl)guanidine), a recently developed insecticide, on insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), we determined the potencies of the compound and 15 analogues in inhibiting the specific binding of [3H]epibatidine (EPI), a nAChR agonist, and [3H]alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BGT), a competitive nAChR antagonist, to the nerve cord membranes of American cockroaches (Periplaneta americana). Racemic dinotefuran inhibited [3H]EPI binding with an IC50 of 890 nM and [3H]alpha-BGT binding with an IC50 of 36.1 microM. Scatchard analysis indicated that the dinotefuran inhibition of [3H]EPI binding was a competitive one. Slight structural modification caused a drastic reduction in potency; only four analogues were found to be equipotent to or more potent than dinotefuran. Chloropyridinyl and chlorothiazolyl neonicotinoid insecticides displayed two or three orders of magnitude higher potency than dinotefuran. There was a good correlation between the IC50 values of tested compounds obtained with [3H]EPI and those obtained with [3H]alpha-BGT. A better correlation was observed between 3-h knockdown activities (KD50) against German cockroaches (Blattella germanica) and IC50 values obtained from [3H]EPI assays than between 24-h lethal activities (LD50) and IC50 values. While the results indicate that dinotefuran and its analogues interact with the ACh-binding site in cockroach nAChRs, it remains to be elucidated why they displayed lower potencies than those expected based on their insecticidal activities.

  4. Nicotine Ameliorates NMDA Receptor Antagonist-Induced Deficits in Contextual Fear Conditioning through High Affinity Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in the Hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    André, Jessica M.; Leach, Prescott T.; Gould, Thomas J.

    2011-01-01

    NMDA glutamate receptors (NMDARs) and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are both involved in learning and synaptic plasticity. Increasing evidence suggests processes mediated by these receptors may interact to modulate learning; however, little is known about the neural substrates involved in these interactive processes. The present studies investigated the effects of nicotine on MK-801 hydrogen maleate (MK-801) and DL-2-Amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid (APV) induced disruption of contextual fear conditioning in male C57BL/6J mice, using direct drug infusion and selective nAChR antagonists to define the brain regions and the nAChR subtypes involved. Mice treated with MK-801 showed a deficit in contextual fear conditioning that was ameliorated by nicotine. Direct drug infusion demonstrated that the NMDAR antagonists disrupted hippocampal function and that nicotine acted in the dorsal hippocampus to ameliorate the deficit in learning. The high-affinity nAChR antagonist Dihydro-β-erythroidine hydrobromide (DhβE) blocked the effects of nicotine on MK-801-induced deficits while the α7 nAChR antagonist methyllycaconitine citrate salt hydrate (MLA) did not. These results suggest that NMDARs and nAChRs may mediate similar hippocampal processes involved in contextual fear conditioning. Furthermore, these results may have implications for developing effective therapeutics for the cognitive deficits associated with schizophrenia because a large subset of patients with schizophrenia exhibit cognitive deficits that may be related to NMDAR dysfunction and smoke at much higher rates than the healthy population, which may be an attempt to ameliorate cognitive deficits. PMID:21167848

  5. Molecular Determinants for Competitive Inhibition of α4β2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Carbone, Annalisa; García-Beltrán, Olimpo; Livingstone, Phil D.; Biggin, Philip C.; Cassels, Bruce K.; Wonnacott, Susan; Zapata-Torres, Gerald; Bermudez, Isabel

    2010-01-01

    The Erythrina alkaloids erysodine and dihydro-β-erythroidine (DHβE) are potent and selective competitive inhibitors of α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), but little is known about the molecular determinants of the sensitivity of this receptor subtype to inhibition by this class of antagonists. We addressed this issue by examining the effects of DHβE and a range of aromatic Erythrina alkaloids on [3H]cytisine binding and receptor function in conjunction with homology models of the α4β2 nAChR, mutagenesis, and functional assays. The lactone group of DHβE and a hydroxyl group at position C-16 in aromatic Erythrina alkaloids were identified as major determinants of potency, which was decreased when the conserved residue Tyr126 in loop A of the α4 subunit was substituted by alanine. Sensitivity to inhibition was also decreased by substituting the conserved aromatic residues α4Trp182 (loop B), α4Tyr230 (loop C), and β2Trp82 (loop D) and the nonconserved β2Thr84; however, only α4Trp182 was predicted to contact bound antagonist, suggesting α4Tyr230, β2Trp82, and β2Thr84 contribute allosterically to the closed state elicited by bound antagonist. In addition, homology modeling predicted strong ionic interactions between the ammonium center of the Erythrina alkaloids and β2Asp196, leading to the uncapping of loop C. Consistent with this, β2D196A abolished sensitivity to inhibition by DHβE or erysodine but not by epierythratidine, which is not predicted to form ionic bonds with β2Asp196. This residue is not conserved in subunits that comprise nAChRs with low sensitivity to inhibition by DHβE or erysodine, which highlights β2Asp196 as a major determinant of the receptor selectivity of Erythrina alkaloids. PMID:20547737

  6. Suitability of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor α7 and Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor 3 Antibodies for Immune Detection

    PubMed Central

    Rommel, Frank R.; Raghavan, Badrinarayanan; Paddenberg, Renate; Kummer, Wolfgang; Tumala, Susanne; Lochnit, Günter; Gieler, Uwe

    2015-01-01

    Recent evidence reveals a crucial role for acetylcholine and its receptors in the regulation of inflammation, particularly of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α7 (Chrna7) and muscarinic acetylcholine receptor 3 (Chrm3). Immunohistochemistry is a key tool for their cellular localization in functional tissues. We evaluated nine different commercially available antibodies on back skin tissue from wild-type (Wt) and gene-deficient (KO) mice. In the immunohistochemical analysis, we focused on key AChR-ligand sensitive skin cells (mast cells, nerve fibers and keratinocytes). All five antibodies tested for Chrm3 and the first three Chrna7 antibodies stained positive in both Wt and respective KO skin. With the 4th antibody (ab23832) nerve fibers were unlabeled in the KO mice. By western blot analysis, this antibody detected bands in both Wt and Chrna7 KO skin and brain. qRT-PCR revealed mRNA amplification with a primer set for the undeleted region in both Wt and KO mice, but none with a primer set for the deleted region in KO mice. By 2D electrophoresis, we found β-actin and β-enolase cross reactivity, which was confirmed by double immunolabeling. In view of the present results, the tested antibodies are not suitable for immunolocalization in skin and suggest thorough control of antibody specificity is required if histomorphometry is intended. PMID:25673288

  7. Methadone is a non-competitive antagonist at the α4β2 and α3* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and an agonist at the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Talka, Reeta; Salminen, Outi; Tuominen, Raimo K

    2015-04-01

    Nicotine-methadone interactions have been studied in human beings and in various experimental settings regarding addiction, reward and pain. Most methadone maintenance treatment patients are smokers, and methadone administration has been shown to increase cigarette smoking. Previous in vitro studies have shown that methadone is a non-competitive antagonist at rat α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) and an agonist at human α7 nAChRs. In this study, we used cell lines expressing human α4β2, α7 and α3* nAChRs to compare the interactions of methadone at the various human nAChRs under the same experimental conditions. A [(3) H]epibatidine displacement assay was used to determine whether methadone binds to the nicotinic receptors, and (86) Rb(+) efflux and changes in intracellular calcium [Ca(2+) ]i were used to assess changes in the functional activity of the receptors. Methadone displaced [(3) H]epibatidine from nicotinic agonist-binding sites in SH-EP1-hα7 and SH-SY5Y cells, but not in SH-EP1-hα4β2 cells. The Ki values for methadone were 6.3 μM in SH-EP1-hα7 cells and 19.4 μM and 1008 μM in SH-SY5Y cells. Methadone increased [Ca(2+) ]i in all cell lines in a concentration-dependent manner, and in SH-EP1-hα7 cells, the effect was more pronounced than the effect of nicotine treatment. In SH-EP1-hα4β2 cells, the effect of methadone was negligible compared to that of nicotine. Methadone pre-treatment abolished the nicotine-induced response in [Ca(2+) ]i in all cell lines expressing nAChRs. In SH-EP1-hα4β2 and SH-SY5Y cells, methadone had no effect on the (86) Rb(+) efflux, but it antagonized the nicotine-induced (86) Rb(+) ion efflux in a non-competitive manner. These results suggest that methadone is an agonist at human α7 nAChRs and a non-competitive antagonist at human α4β2 and α3* nAChRs. This study adds further support to the previous findings that opioids interact with nAChRs, which may underlie their frequent co

  8. The alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor as a pharmacological target for inflammation

    PubMed Central

    de Jonge, W J; Ulloa, L

    2007-01-01

    The physiological regulation of the immune system encompasses comprehensive anti-inflammatory mechanisms that can be harnessed for the treatment of infectious and inflammatory disorders. Recent studies indicate that the vagal nerve, involved in control of heart rate, hormone secretion and gastrointestinal motility, is also an immunomodulator. In experimental models of inflammatory diseases, vagal nerve stimulation attenuates the production of proinflammatory cytokines and inhibits the inflammatory process. Acetylcholine, the principal neurotransmitter of the vagal nerve, controls immune cell functions via the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (alpha7nAChR). From a pharmacological perspective, nicotinic agonists are more efficient than acetylcholine at inhibiting the inflammatory signaling and the production of proinflammatory cytokines. This ‘nicotinic anti-inflammatory pathway' may have clinical implications as treatment with nicotinic agonists can modulate the production of proinflammatory cytokines from immune cells. Nicotine has been tested in clinical trials as a treatment for inflammatory diseases such as ulcerative colitis, but the therapeutic potential of this mechanism is limited by the collateral toxicity of nicotine. Here, we review the recent advances that support the design of more specific receptor-selective nicotinic agonists that have anti-inflammatory effects while eluding its collateral toxicity. PMID:17502850

  9. An allosteric modulator of the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor possessing cognition-enhancing properties in vivo.

    PubMed

    Timmermann, Daniel B; Grønlien, Jens Halvard; Kohlhaas, Kathy L; Nielsen, Elsebet Ø; Dam, Eva; Jørgensen, Tino D; Ahring, Philip K; Peters, Dan; Holst, Dorte; Christensen, Jeppe K; Chrsitensen, Jeppe K; Malysz, John; Briggs, Clark A; Gopalakrishnan, Murali; Olsen, Gunnar M

    2007-10-01

    Augmentation of nicotinic alpha7 receptor function is considered to be a potential therapeutic strategy aimed at ameliorating cognitive and mnemonic dysfunction in relation to debilitating pathological conditions, such as Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. In the present report, a novel positive allosteric modulator of the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), 1-(5-chloro-2-hydroxy-phenyl)-3-(2-chloro-5-trifluoromethyl-phenyl)-urea (NS1738), is described. NS1738 was unable to displace or affect radioligand binding to the agonist binding site of nicotinic receptors, and it was devoid of effect when applied alone in electrophysiological paradigms. However, when applied in the presence of acetylcholine (ACh), NS1738 produced a marked increase in the current flowing through alpha7 nAChRs, as determined in both oocyte electrophysiology and patch-clamp recordings from mammalian cells. NS1738 acted by increasing the peak amplitude of ACh-evoked currents at all concentrations; thus, it increased the maximal efficacy of ACh. Oocyte experiments indicated an increase in ACh potency as well. NS1738 had only marginal effects on the desensitization kinetics of alpha7 nAChRs, as determined from patch-clamp studies of both transfected cells and cultured hippocampal neurons. NS1738 was modestly brain-penetrant, and it was demonstrated to counteract a (-)-scopolamine-induced deficit in acquisition of a water-maze learning task in rats. Moreover, NS1738 improved performance in the rat social recognition test to the same extent as (-)-nicotine, demonstrating that NS1738 is capable of producing cognitive enhancement in vivo. These data support the notion that alpha7 nAChR allosteric modulation may constitute a novel pharmacological principle for the treatment of cognitive dysfunction.

  10. Agonist and antagonist effects of tobacco-related nitrosamines on human α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Brusco, Simone; Ambrosi, Paola; Meneghini, Simone; Becchetti, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    Regulation of the “neuronal” nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) is implicated in both tobacco addiction and smoking-dependent tumor promotion. Some of these effects are caused by the tobacco-derived N-nitrosamines, which are carcinogenic compounds that avidly bind to nAChRs. However, the functional effects of these drugs on specific nAChR subtypes are largely unknown. By using patch-clamp methods, we tested 4-(methylnitrosamine)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone (NNK) and N'-nitrosonornicotine (NNN) on human α4β2 nAChRs. These latter are widely distributed in the mammalian brain and are also frequently expressed outside the nervous system. NNK behaved as a partial agonist, with an apparent EC50 of 16.7 μM. At 100 μM, it activated 16% of the maximal current activated by nicotine. When NNK was co-applied with nicotine, it potentiated the currents elicited by nicotine concentrations ≤ 100 nM. At higher concentrations of nicotine, NNK always inhibited the α4β2 nAChR. In contrast, NNN was a pure inhibitor of this nAChR subtype, with IC50 of approximately 1 nM in the presence of 10 μM nicotine. The effects of both NNK and NNN were mainly competitive and largely independent of Vm. The different actions of NNN and NNK must be taken into account when interpreting their biological effects in vitro and in vivo. PMID:26441658

  11. Positive allosteric modulation of alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors enhances recognition memory and cognitive flexibility in rats.

    PubMed

    Nikiforuk, Agnieszka; Kos, Tomasz; Potasiewicz, Agnieszka; Popik, Piotr

    2015-08-01

    A wide body of preclinical and clinical data suggests that alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7-nAChRs) may represent useful targets for cognitive improvement in schizophrenia and Alzheimer׳s disease. A promising recent approach is based on the use of positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) of α7-nAChRs due to their several advantages over the direct agonists. Nevertheless, the behavioural effects of this class of compounds, particularly with regard to higher-order cognitive functions, have not been broadly characterised. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the procognitive efficacies of type I and type II α7-nAChRs PAMs, N-(4-chlorophenyl)-[[(4-chlorophenyl)amino]methylene]-3-methyl-5-isoxazoleacet-amide (CCMI) and N-(5-Chloro-2,4-dimethoxyphenyl)-N'-(5-methyl-3-isoxazolyl)urea (PNU-120596) in the novel object recognition task (NORT), attentional set-shifting task (ASST) and five-choice serial reaction time task (5-CSRTT) in rats. Additionally, the effects of galantamine, an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor that also allosterically modulates nAChRs, were assessed. We report that CCMI (0.3-3mg/kg), PNU-120596 (0.3-3mg/kg) and galantamine (1-3mg/kg) attenuated the delay-induced impairment in NORT performance and facilitated cognitive flexibility in the ASST. Methyllycaconitine (3mg/kg) blocked the actions of CCMI, PNU-120596 and galantamine in the NORT and ASST, suggesting that the procognitive effects of these compounds are α7-nAChRs-dependent. However, none of the compounds tested affected the rats' attentional performance in the 5-CSRTT. The present findings confirm and extend the observations indicating that the positive allosteric modulation of α7-nAChRs enhances recognition memory and cognitive flexibility in preclinical tasks. Therefore, the present study supports the utility of α7-nAChRs PAMs as a potential cognitive enhancing therapy.

  12. The influence of allosteric modulators and transmembrane mutations on desensitisation and activation of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Chatzidaki, Anna; D'Oyley, Jarryl M; Gill-Thind, JasKiran K; Sheppard, Tom D; Millar, Neil S

    2015-10-01

    Acetylcholine activates nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) by binding at an extracellular orthosteric site. Previous studies have described several positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) that are selective for homomeric α7 nAChRs. These include type I PAMs, which exert little or no effect on the rate of receptor desensitisation, and type II PAMs, which cause a dramatic loss of agonist-induced desensitisation. Here we report evidence that transmembrane mutations in α7 nAChRs have diverse effects on receptor activation and desensitisation by allosteric ligands. It has been reported previously that the L247T mutation, located toward the middle of the second transmembrane domain (at the 9' position), confers reduced levels of desensitisation. In contrast, the M260L mutation, located higher up in the TM2 domain (at the 22' position), does not show any difference in desensitisation compared to wild-type receptors. We have found that in receptors containing the L247T mutation, both type I PAMs and type II PAMs are converted into non-desensitising agonists. In contrast, in receptors containing the M260L mutation, this effect is seen only with type II PAMs. These findings, indicating that the M260L mutation has a selective effect on type II PAMs, have been confirmed both with previously described PAMs and also with a series of novel α7-selective PAMs. The novel PAMs examined in this study have close chemical similarity but diverse pharmacological properties. For example, they include compounds displaying effects on receptor desensitisation that are typical of classical type I and type II PAMs but, in addition, they include compounds with intermediate properties.

  13. Role of the large cytoplasmic loop of the alpha 7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit in receptor expression and function.

    PubMed

    Valor, Luis M; Mulet, José; Sala, Francisco; Sala, Salvador; Ballesta, Juan J; Criado, Manuel

    2002-06-25

    The role of the large intracellular loop of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) alpha7 subunit in the expression of functional channels was studied. For this purpose, systematic deletions and substitutions were made throughout the loop and the ability of the mutated alpha7 subunits to support expression of functional nAChRs at the Xenopus oocyte membrane was tested. Surface nAChR expression was abolished upon removal of sequences at two regions, a 29-amino acid segment close to the N-terminus of the loop (amino acids 297-325) and adjacent to the third transmembrane region and an 11-amino acid segment near the fourth transmembrane region. Some residues (amino acids 317-322) within the 29 amino acids N-terminal segment could be substituted by others but not deleted without loss of expression, suggesting that a certain structure, determined by the number of amino acids rather than by their identity, has to be maintained in this region. The contiguous sequence M323 K324 R325 did not tolerate deletions and substitutions. Removal of the rest of the cytoplasmic loop was not deleterious; even higher expression levels (2-4-fold) were obtained upon large deletions of the loop (Delta399-432 and Delta339-370). High expression levels were observed provided that a minimal sequence of three amino acids (E371, G372, and M373) was present. In addition, some electrophysiological properties of mutant nAChRs were modified. Substitution of the EGM sequence by other protein segments produced a variety of effects, but, in general, insertions were not well tolerated, suggesting the existence of tight structural restrictions in the large cytoplasmic region of the rat alpha7 subunit.

  14. Inflammation decreases the level of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the brain mitochondria and makes them more susceptible to apoptosis induction.

    PubMed

    Lykhmus, Olena; Gergalova, Galyna; Zouridakis, Marios; Tzartos, Socrates; Komisarenko, Sergiy; Skok, Maryna

    2015-11-01

    α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7 nAChRs) are involved in regulating inflammatory reactions, as well as the cell viability. They are expressed in both the plasma membrane and mitochondria of eukaryotic cells. Previously we found that neuroinflammation resulted in the decrease of α7 nAChR density in the brain of mice and was accompanied by accumulation of amyloid-beta (Aβ) peptides and memory impairment. In the present paper, it is shown that inflammation induced by either regular bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) injections or immunizations with α7 nAChR extracellular domain (1-208) affected also the brain cell mitochondria. Using various modifications of sandwich ELISA, we observed the decrease of α7 nAChRs and accumulation of Aβ(1-40) and Aβ(1-42) in mitochondria of immunized or LPS-treated mice compared to control ones. Mitochondria of treated mice responded with cytochrome c release to lower Ca(2+) concentrations than mitochondria of control mice and were less sensitive to its attenuation with α7 nAChR agonist PNU282987. It is concluded that inflammation decreases α7 nAChR expression in both mitochondria and cell plasma membrane and makes mitochondria more susceptible to apoptosis induction.

  15. Activation of α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Decreases On-site Mortality in Crush Syndrome through Insulin Signaling-Na/K-ATPase Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Fan, Bo-Shi; Zhang, En-Hui; Wu, Miao; Guo, Jin-Min; Su, Ding-Feng; Liu, Xia; Yu, Jian-Guang

    2016-01-01

    On-site mortality in crush syndrome remains high due to lack of effective drugs based on definite diagnosis. Anisodamine (Ani) is widely used in China for treatment of shock, and activation of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) mediates such antishock effect. The present work was designed to test whether activation of α7nAChR with Ani decreased mortality in crush syndrome shortly after decompression. Sprague-Dawley rats and C57BL/6 mice with crush syndrome were injected with Ani (20 mg/kg and 28 mg/kg respectively, i.p.) 30 min before decompression. Survival time, serum potassium, insulin, and glucose levels were observed shortly after decompression. Involvement of α7nAChR was verified with methyllycaconitine (selective α7nAChR antagonist) and PNU282987 (selective α7nAChR agonist), or in α7nAChR knockout mice. Effect of Ani was also appraised in C2C12 myotubes. Ani reduced mortality and serum potassium and enhanced insulin sensitivity shortly after decompression in animals with crush syndrome, and PNU282987 exerted similar effects. Such effects were counteracted by methyllycaconitine or in α7nAChR knockout mice. Mortality and serum potassium in rats with hyperkalemia were also reduced by Ani. Phosphorylation of Na/K-ATPase was enhanced by Ani in C2C12 myotubes. Inhibition of tyrosine kinase on insulin receptor, phosphoinositide 3-kinase, mammalian target of rapamycin, signal transducer and activator of transcription 3, and Na/K-ATPase counteracted the effect of Ani on extracellular potassium. These findings demonstrated that activation of α7nAChR could decrease on-site mortality in crush syndrome, at least in part based on the decline of serum potassium through insulin signaling-Na/K-ATPase pathway. PMID:27065867

  16. Parallel Anxiolytic-Like Effects and Upregulation of Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Following Chronic Nicotine and Varenicline

    PubMed Central

    Turner, Jill R.; Castellano, Laura M.

    2011-01-01

    Introduction: Clinical and preclinical studies suggest that regulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) maybe involved in the etiology of withdrawal symptoms. Methods: We evaluated heteromeric nAChR regulation via [3H]epibatidine binding following cessation of chronic nicotine or varenicline treatment. Animals were concurrently tested in the marble-burying test to evaluate treatment-related effects. Results: We found that both nicotine (18 mg/kg/day, free base) and varenicline (1.8 mg/kg/day) chronically administered for 14 days upregulated nAChRs significantly in the cortex, hippocampus, striatum, and thalamus. The duration of upregulation (up to 72 hr) was both drug and region specific. In addition to nAChR upregulation, chronic administration of both nicotine and varenicline had anxiolytic-like effects in the marble-burying test. This effect was maintained for 48 hr following cessation of varenicline but was absent 24 hr following cessation from nicotine. Additionally, marble-burying behavior positively correlated to the regulation of cortical nAChRs following cessation of either treatment. Conclusions: Varenicline has been shown to be an efficacious smoking cessation aid, with a proposed mechanism of action that includes modulation of dopamine release in reward areas of the brain. Our studies show that varenicline elicits both anxiolytic effects in the marble-burying test as well as region- and time-specific receptor upregulation. These findings suggest receptor upregulation as a mechanism for its efficacy as a smoking cessation therapy. PMID:21097981

  17. Fast-channel congenital myasthenic syndrome with a novel acetylcholine receptor mutation at the α-ε subunit interface.

    PubMed

    Webster, Richard; Liu, Wei-Wei; Chaouch, Amina; Lochmüller, Hanns; Beeson, David

    2014-02-01

    Congenital myasthenic syndromes (CMS) result from the failure to achieve muscle depolarisation due to disorders in the structure and/or function of the neuromuscular synapse. Mutations of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) form a major subset of CMS. We describe a patient who presented with recurrent apnoeic crises in the neonatal period requiring ventilator support. Electromyography revealed compound muscle action potential decrement upon repetitive stimulation. Sequencing of nAChR subunit genes revealed two missense mutations. One previously reported null mutation p.εTyr15His, and a second novel missense mutation, p.εThr38Lys, that is well expressed in mammalian cell culture and thus likely to exert its effect via alteration of ion channel kinetics. Functional analysis revealed abbreviated ion channel bursts characteristic of a fast channel CMS. The mutation p.εThr38Lys occurs at the interface between the α and ε subunits of the nAChR pentamer and leads to instability of the open channel. The effects of this mutation on channel function were investigated in relation to other fast channel mutants at an analogous subunit interface within the nAChR pentamer. Fast channel syndromes are frequently characterised by severe myasthenic weakness with apnoeic crises; knowledge of the underlying mutation and its functional consequences can be vital for appropriate therapy and patient management.

  18. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Density in Cognitively Intact Subjects at an Early Stage of Parkinson’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Isaias, Ioannis Ugo; Spiegel, Jörg; Brumberg, Joachim; Cosgrove, Kelly P.; Marotta, Giorgio; Oishi, Naoya; Higuchi, Takahiro; Küsters, Sebastian; Schiller, Markus; Dillmann, Ulrich; van Dyck, Christopher H.; Buck, Andreas; Herrmann, Ken; Schloegl, Susanne; Volkmann, Jens; Lassmann, Michael; Fassbender, Klaus; Lorenz, Reinhard; Samnick, Samuel

    2014-01-01

    We investigated in vivo brain nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) distribution in cognitively intact subjects with Parkinson’s disease (PD) at an early stage of the disease. Fourteen patients and 13 healthy subjects were imaged with single photon emission computed tomography and the radiotracer 5-[123I]iodo-3-[2(S)-2-azetidinylmethoxy]pyridine ([123I]5IA). Patients were selected according to several criteria, including short duration of motor signs (<7 years) and normal scores at an extensive neuropsychological evaluation. In PD patients, nAChR density was significantly higher in the putamen, the insular cortex and the supplementary motor area and lower in the caudate nucleus, the orbitofrontal cortex, and the middle temporal gyrus. Disease duration positively correlated with nAChR density in the putamen ipsilateral (ρ = 0.56, p < 0.05) but not contralateral (ρ = 0.49, p = 0.07) to the clinically most affected hemibody. We observed, for the first time in vivo, higher nAChR density in brain regions of the motor and limbic basal ganglia circuits of subjects with PD. Our findings support the notion of an up-regulated cholinergic activity at the striatal and possibly cortical level in cognitively intact PD patients at an early stage of disease. PMID:25177294

  19. Virtual screening studies of Chinese medicine Coptidis Rhizoma as alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists for treatment of Alzheimer's disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiang, Li; Xu, Youdong; Zhang, Yan; Meng, Xianli; Wang, Ping

    2015-04-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is an age-related neurodegenerative disease. Extensive in vitro and in vivo experiments have proved that the decreased activity of the cholinergic neuron is responsible for the memory and cognition deterioration. The alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR) is proposed to a drug target of AD, and compounds which acting as α7-nAChR agonists are considered as candidates in AD treatment. Chinese medicine CoptidisRhizoma and its compounds are reported in various anti-AD effects. In this study, virtual screening, docking approaches and hydrogen bond analyses were applied to screen potential α7-nAChR agonists from CoptidisRhizome. The 3D structure of the protein was obtained from PDB database. 87 reported compounds were included in this research and their structures were accessed by NCBI Pubchem. Docking analysis of the compounds was performed using AutoDock 4.2 and AutoDock Vina. The images of the binding modes hydrogen bonds and the hydrophobic interaction were rendered with PyMOL1.5.0.4. and LigPlot+ respectively. Finally, N-tran-feruloyltyramine, isolariciresinol, flavanone, secoisolariciresinol, (+)-lariciresinol and dihydrochalcone, exhibited the lowest docking energy of protein-ligand complex. The results indicate these 6 compounds are potential α7 nAChR agonists, and expected to be effective in AD treatment.

  20. Mutations in Dalpha1 or Dbeta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits can confer resistance to neonicotinoids in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Perry, Trent; Heckel, David G; McKenzie, John A; Batterham, Philip

    2008-05-01

    Resistance to insecticides by modification of their molecular targets is a serious problem in chemical control of many arthropod pests. Neonicotinoids target the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) of arthropods. The spectrum of possible resistance-conferring mutations of this receptor is poorly understood. Prediction of resistance is complicated by the existence of multiple genes encoding the different subunits of this essential component of neurotransmission. We focused on the cluster of three Drosophila melanogaster nAChR subunit genes at cytological region 96A. EMS mutagenesis and selection for resistance to nitenpyram was performed on hybrids carrying a deficiency for this chromosomal region. Two complementation groups were defined for the four strains isolated. Molecular characterisation of the mutations found lesions in two nAChR subunit genes, Dalpha1 (encoding an alpha-type subunit) and Dbeta2 (beta-type). Mutations conferring resistance in beta-type receptors have not previously been reported, but we found several lesions in the Dbeta2 sequence, including locations distant from the predicted neonicotinoid-binding site. This study illustrates that mutations in a single-receptor subunit can confer nitenpyram resistance. Moreover, some of the mutations may protect the insect against nitenpyram by interfering with subunit assembly or channel activation, rather than affecting binding affinities of neonicotinoids to the channel.

  1. 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

  2. Allosteric binding sites on muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Wess, Jürgen

    2005-12-01

    In this issue of Molecular Pharmacology, Tränkle et al. (p. 1597) present new findings regarding the existence of a second allosteric site on the M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (M2 mAChR). The M2 mAChR is a prototypic class A G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) that has proven to be a very useful model system to study the molecular mechanisms involved in the binding of allosteric GPCR ligands. Previous studies have identified several allosteric muscarinic ligands, including the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor tacrine and the bis-pyridinium derivative 4,4'-bis-[(2,6-dichloro-benzyloxy-imino)-methyl]-1,1'-propane-1,3-diyl-bis-pyridinium dibromide (Duo3), which, in contrast to conventional allosteric muscarinic ligands, display concentration-effect curves with slope factors >1. By analyzing the interactions of tacrine and Duo3 with other allosteric muscarinic agents predicted to bind to the previously identified ;common' allosteric binding site, Tränkle et al. provide evidence suggesting that two allosteric agents and one orthosteric ligand may be able to bind to the M2 mAChR simultaneously. Moreover, studies with mutant mAChRs indicated that the M2 receptor epitopes involved in the binding of tacrine and Duo3 may not be identical. Molecular modeling and ligand docking studies suggested that the additional allosteric site probably represents a subdomain of the receptor's allosteric binding cleft. Because allosteric binding sites have been found on many other GPCRs and drugs interacting with these sites are thought to have great therapeutic potential, the study by Tränkle et al. should be of considerable general interest.

  3. Unmasking the functions of the chromaffin cell α7 nicotinic receptor by using short pulses of acetylcholine and selective blockers

    PubMed Central

    López, Manuela G.; Montiel, Carmen; Herrero, Carlos J.; García-Palomero, Esther; Mayorgas, Inés; Hernández-Guijo, Jesús M.; Villarroya, M.; Olivares, Román; Gandía, Luis; McIntosh, J. Michael; Olivera, Baldomero M.; García, Antonio G.

    1998-01-01

    Methyllycaconitine (MLA), α-conotoxin ImI, and α-bungarotoxin inhibited the release of catecholamines triggered by brief pulses of acetylcholine (ACh) (100 μM, 5 s) applied to fast-superfused bovine adrenal chromaffin cells, with IC50s of 100 nM for MLA and 300 nM for α-conotoxin ImI and α-bungarotoxin. MLA (100 nM), α-conotoxin ImI (1 μM), and α-bungarotoxin (1 μM) halved the entry of 45Ca2+ stimulated by 5-s pulses of 300 μM ACh applied to incubated cells. These supramaximal concentrations of α7 nicotinic receptor blockers depressed by 30% (MLA), 25% (α-bungarotoxin), and 50% (α-conotoxin ImI) the inward current generated by 1-s pulses of 100 μM ACh, applied to voltage-clamped chromaffin cells. In Xenopus oocytes expressing rat brain α7 neuronal nicotinic receptor for acetylcholine nAChR, the current generated by 1-s pulses of ACh was blocked by MLA, α-conotoxin ImI, and α-bungarotoxin with IC50s of 0.1 nM, 100 nM, and 1.6 nM, respectively; the current through α3β4 nAChR was unaffected by α-conotoxin ImI and α-bungarotoxin, and weakly blocked by MLA (IC50 = 1 μM). The functions of controlling the electrical activity, the entry of Ca2+, and the ensuing exocytotic response of chromaffin cells were until now exclusively attributed to α3β4 nAChR; the present results constitute the first evidence to support a prominent role of α7 nAChR in controlling such functions, specially under the more physiological conditions used here to stimulate chromaffin cells with brief pulses of ACh. PMID:9826675

  4. Untranslated region-dependent exclusive expression of high-sensitivity subforms of alpha4beta2 and alpha3beta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Briggs, Clark A; Gubbins, Earl J; Marks, Michael J; Putman, C Brent; Thimmapaya, Rama; Meyer, Michael D; Surowy, Carol S

    2006-07-01

    alpha4beta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are recognized as the principal nicotine binding site in brain. Recombinant alpha4beta2 nAChR demonstrate biphasic concentration-response relationships with low- and high-EC50 components. This study shows that untranslated regions (UTR) can influence expression of high-sensitivity subforms of alpha4beta2 and alpha3beta2 nAChR. Oocytes injected with alpha4 and beta2 RNA lacking UTR expressed biphasic concentration-response relationships for acetylcholine with high-sensitivity EC50 values of 0.5 to 2.5 microM (14-24% of the population) and low-sensitivity EC50 values of 110 to 180 microM (76-86%). In contrast, message with UTR expressed exclusively the high-sensitivity alpha4beta2 nAChR subform with an acetylcholine EC50 value of 2.2 microM. Additional studies revealed pharmacological differences between high- and low-sensitivity alpha4beta2 subforms. Whereas the antagonists dihydro-beta-erythroidine (IC50 of 3-6 nM) and methyllycaconitine (IC50 of 40-135 nM) were not selective between high- and low-sensitivity alpha4beta2, chlorisondamine, mecamylamine, and d-tubocurarine were, respectively, 100-, 8-, and 5-fold selective for the alpha4beta2 subform with low sensitivity to acetylcholine. Conversely, agonists that selectively activated the high-sensitivity alpha4beta2 subform with respect to efficacy as well as potency were identified. Furthermore, two of these agonists were shown to activate mouse brain alpha4beta2 as well as the ferret high-sensitivity alpha4beta2 expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. With the use of UTR-containing RNA, exclusive expression of a novel high-sensitivity alpha3beta2 nAChR was also achieved. These studies 1) provide further evidence for the existence of multiple subforms of alpha4beta2 nAChR, 2) extend that to alpha3beta2 nAChR, 3) demonstrate UTR influence on beta2-containing nAChR properties, and 4) reveal compounds that interact with alpha4beta2 in a subform-selective manner.

  5. The acetylcholine receptor as a cellular receptor for rabies virus.

    PubMed

    Lentz, T L; Burrage, T G; Smith, A L; Tignor, G H

    1983-01-01

    Characterization of specific host cell receptors for enveloped viruses is a difficult problem because many enveloped viruses bind to a variety of substrates which are not obviously related to tissue tropisms in the intact host. Viruses with a limited cellular tropism in infected animals present useful models for studying the mechanisms by which virus attachment regulates the disease process. Rabies virus is a rhabdovirus which exhibits a marked neuronotropism in infected animals. Limited data suggest that spread occurs by transsynaptic transfer of virus. The results of recent experiments at Yale suggest that viral antigen is localized very soon after injection at neuromuscular junctions, the motor nerve endings on muscle tissue. On cultured muscle cells, similar co-localization with the acetylcholine receptor is seen both before and after virus multiplication. Pretreatment of these cells with some ligands of the acetylcholine receptor results in reduced viral infection. These findings suggest that a neurotransmitter receptor or a closely associated molecule may serve as a specific host cell receptor for rabies virus and thus may be responsible for the tissue tropism exhibited by this virus. In addition to clarifying aspects of rabies virus pathogenesis, these studies have broad implications regarding the mechanism by which other viruses or viral immunizations might mediate autoimmune diseases such as myasthenia gravis.

  6. 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

  7. Alpha-9 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Immunoreactivity in the Rodent Vestibular Labyrinth

    PubMed Central

    Luebke, Anne E.; Maroni, Paul D.; Guth, Scott M.; Lysakowski, Anna

    2010-01-01

    Vestibular tissues (cristae ampullares, macular otolithic organs, and Scarpa’s ganglia) in chinchilla, rat, and guinea pig were examined for immunoreactivity to the α9 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit. The α9 antibody was generated against a conserved peptide present in the intracellular loop of the predicted protein sequence of the guinea pig α9 nAChR subunit. In the vestibular periphery, staining was observed in calyces around type I hair cells, at the synaptic pole of type II hair cells, and in varying levels in Scarpa’s ganglion cells. Ganglion cells were also triply labeled to detect α9, calretinin, and peripherin. Calretinin labels calyx-only afferents. Peripherin labels bouton-only afferents. Dimorphic afferents, which have both calyx and bouton endings, are not labeled by calretinin or peripherin. In these experiments, α9 was expressed in both calyx and dimorphic afferents. A subpopulation of small ganglion cells did not contain the α9 nAChR but did stain for peripherin. We surmise that these are bouton-only afferents. Bouton (regularly discharging) afferents also show efferent responses, although they are qualitatively different from those in irregularly discharging (calyx and dimorphic) afferents, much slower and longer lasting. Thus, regular afferents are probably more affected via a muscarinic cholinergic or a peptidergic mechanism, with a much smaller superimposed fast nicotinic-type response. This latter response could be due to one of the other nicotinic receptors that have been described in studies from other laboratories. PMID:16217793

  8. Critical Molecular Determinants of α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Allosteric Activation

    PubMed Central

    Horenstein, Nicole A.; Papke, Roger L.; Kulkarni, Abhijit R.; Chaturbhuj, Ganesh U.; Stokes, Clare; Manther, Khan; Thakur, Ganesh A.

    2016-01-01

    The α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are uniquely sensitive to selective positive allosteric modulators (PAMs), which increase the efficiency of channel activation to a level greater than that of other nAChRs. Although PAMs must work in concert with “orthosteric” agonists, compounds such as GAT107 ((3aR,4S,9bS)-4-(4-bromophenyl)-3a,4,5,9b-tetrahydro-3H-cyclopenta[c]quinoline-8-sulfonamide) have the combined properties of agonists and PAMs (ago-PAM) and produce very effective channel activation (direct allosteric activation (DAA)) by operating at two distinct sites in the absence of added agonist. One site is likely to be the same transmembrane site where PAMs like PNU-120596 function. We show that the other site, required for direct activation, is likely to be solvent-accessible at the extracellular domain vestibule. We identify key attributes of molecules in this family that are able to act at the DAA site through variation at the aryl ring substituent of the tetrahydroquinoline ring system and with two different classes of competitive antagonists of DAA. Analyses of molecular features of effective allosteric agonists allow us to propose a binding model for the DAA site, featuring a largely non-polar pocket accessed from the extracellular vestibule with an important role for Asp-101. This hypothesis is supported with data from site-directed mutants. Future refinement of the model and the characterization of specific GAT107 analogs will allow us to define critical structural elements that can be mapped onto the receptor surface for an improved understanding of this novel way to target α7 nAChR therapeutically. PMID:26742843

  9. Identification of a Negative Allosteric Site on Human α4β2 and α3β4 Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Pavlovicz, Ryan E.; Henderson, Brandon J.; Bonnell, Andrew B.; Boyd, R. Thomas; McKay, Dennis B.; Li, Chenglong

    2011-01-01

    Acetylcholine-based neurotransmission is regulated by cationic, ligand-gated ion channels called nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). These receptors have been linked to numerous neurological diseases and disorders such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and nicotine addiction. Recently, a class of compounds has been discovered that antagonize nAChR function in an allosteric fashion. Models of human α4β2 and α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) extracellular domains have been developed to computationally explore the binding of these compounds, including the dynamics and free energy changes associated with ligand binding. Through a blind docking study to multiple receptor conformations, the models were used to determine a putative binding mode for the negative allosteric modulators. This mode, in close proximity to the agonist binding site, is presented in addition to a hypothetical mode of antagonism that involves obstruction of C loop closure. Molecular dynamics simulations and MM-PBSA free energy of binding calculations were used as computational validation of the predicted binding mode, while functional assays on wild-type and mutated receptors provided experimental support. Based on the proposed binding mode, two residues on the β2 subunit were independently mutated to the corresponding residues found on the β4 subunit. The T58K mutation resulted in an eight-fold decrease in the potency of KAB-18, a compound that exhibits preferential antagonism for human α4β2 over α3β4 nAChRs, while the F118L mutation resulted in a loss of inhibitory activity for KAB-18 at concentrations up to 100 µM. These results demonstrate the selectivity of KAB-18 for human α4β2 nAChRs and validate the methods used for identifying the nAChR modulator binding site. Exploitation of this site may lead to the development of more potent and subtype-selective nAChR antagonists which may be used in the treatment of a number of neurological diseases and

  10. First and second transmembrane segments of alpha3, alpha4, beta2, and beta4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits influence the efficacy and potency of nicotine.

    PubMed

    Rush, Ray; Kuryatov, Alexander; Nelson, Mark E; Lindstrom, Jon

    2002-06-01

    The first three transmembrane segments (M1-M3) of human nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been implicated in determining the efficacy of nicotine by studies of alpha3/alpha4 subunit chimeras. Nicotine has full efficacy on the alpha4beta2 nAChR and partial efficacy on the alpha3beta2 nAChR. Now, we have exchanged individually three amino acids between the alpha4 and the alpha3 subunits at positions 226(M1), 258(M2), and 262(M2). Also, similar exchanges were made in the beta2 and beta4 subunits at positions 224(M1), 226(M1), and 254(M2) (using alpha subunit numbering). Expression of these mutated nAChRs in Xenopus laevis oocytes showed that the mutated M1 amino acids were important in influencing the potency of ACh and nicotine. It is hypothesized that these M1 amino acids affect the stability between the resting and activated states of the nAChR. M2 amino acids altered the efficacy of nicotine, usually without altering its potency. When the residue located at position 258 in the M2 region of the alpha subunit was valine (as in the alpha3 subunit), the resulting nAChR exhibited partial efficacy for nicotine that was voltage-dependent. Therefore, we believe that these M2 amino acids contribute to the formation of a binding site for nicotine in the alpha3beta2 nAChR channel, which results in a low-affinity channel block, causing the lower efficacy of nicotine on this nAChR.

  11. Pre-clinical properties of the α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor partial agonists varenicline, cytisine and dianicline translate to clinical efficacy for nicotine dependence

    PubMed Central

    Rollema, H; Shrikhande, A; Ward, KM; Tingley, FD; Coe, JW; O'Neill, BT; Tseng, E; Wang, EQ; Mather, RJ; Hurst, RS; Williams, KE; de Vries, M; Cremers, T; Bertrand, S; Bertrand, D

    2010-01-01

    Background and purpose: Smoking cessation trials with three high-affinity partial agonists of α4β2 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have demonstrated differences in their clinical efficacy. This work examines the origin of the differences by taking into account brain exposure and pharmacological effects at human α4β2 nAChRs. Experimental approach: Rat plasma and brain pharmacokinetics were characterized and used to predict human steady-state plasma and brain concentrations following recommended doses of each of the three compounds. The pharmacological characterization included in vitro affinities at different nAChR subtypes, functional efficacies and potencies at the human α4β2 nAChR, as well as in vivo effects on rat mesolimbic dopamine turn-over. Key results: A comparison of predicted human brain concentrations following therapeutic doses demonstrated that varenicline and nicotine, but not dianicline and cytisine, can extensively desensitize and, to a lesser extent, activate α4β2 nAChRs. The limited clinical efficacy of dianicline may be accounted for by a combination of weak functional potency at α4β2 nAChRs and moderate brain penetration, while recommended doses of cytisine, despite its high in vitro potency, are predicted to result in brain concentrations that are insufficient to affect α4β2 nAChRs. Conclusions and implications: The data provide a plausible explanation for the higher abstinence rate in smoking cessation trials following treatment with varenicline than with the two other α4β2 nAChR partial agonists. In addition, this retrospective analysis demonstrates the usefulness of combining in vitro and in vivo parameters with estimated therapeutic human brain concentrations for translation to clinical efficacy. PMID:20331614

  12. Structural and functional studies of the modulator NS9283 reveal agonist-like mechanism of action at α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Olsen, Jeppe A; Ahring, Philip K; Kastrup, Jette S; Gajhede, Michael; Balle, Thomas

    2014-09-05

    Modulation of Cys loop receptor ion channels is a proven drug discovery strategy, but many underlying mechanisms of the mode of action are poorly understood. We report the x-ray structure of the acetylcholine-binding protein from Lymnaea stagnalis with NS9283, a stoichiometry selective positive modulator that targets the α4-α4 interface of α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Together with homology modeling, mutational data, quantum mechanical calculations, and pharmacological studies on α4β2 nAChRs, the structure reveals a modulator binding mode that overlaps the α4-α4 interface agonist (acetylcholine)-binding site. Analysis of contacts to residues known to govern agonist binding and function suggests that modulation occurs by an agonist-like mechanism. Selectivity for α4-α4 over α4-β2 interfaces is determined mainly by steric restrictions from Val-136 on the β2-subunit and favorable interactions between NS9283 and His-142 at the complementary side of α4. In the concentration ranges where modulation is observed, its selectivity prevents NS9283 from directly activating nAChRs because activation requires coordinated action from more than one interface. However, we demonstrate that in a mutant receptor with one natural and two engineered α4-α4 interfaces, NS9283 is an agonist. Modulation via extracellular binding sites is well known for benzodiazepines acting at γ-aminobutyric acid type A receptors. Like NS9283, benzodiazepines increase the apparent agonist potency with a minimal effect on efficacy. The shared modulatory profile along with a binding site located in an extracellular subunit interface suggest that modulation via an agonist-like mechanism may be a common mechanism of action that potentially could apply to Cys loop receptors beyond the α4β2 nAChRs.

  13. Depression-like phenotype by deletion of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor: Role of BDNF-TrkB in nucleus accumbens

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ji-chun; Yao, Wei; Ren, Qian; Yang, Chun; Dong, Chao; Ma, Min; Wu, Jin; Hashimoto, Kenji

    2016-01-01

    The α7 subtype of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) plays a role in the inflammation which is implicated in depression. This study was undertaken to examine the role of α7 nAChR in depression using α7 nAChR knock-out (KO) mice. Serum levels of tumor necrosis factor-α and interlukin-1β in KO mice were higher than wild-type mice, suggesting an inflammatory process in KO mice. α7 nAChR KO mice showed depression-like phenotype. Furthermore, KO mice showed increased brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and its receptor TrkB signaling, as well as increased synaptogenesis and spine density in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), although BDNF-TrkB signaling and synaptogenesis were not altered in the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus. Systemic administration of the TrkB antagonist ANA-12, but not the TrkB agonist 7,8-dihydroxyflavone and the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor fluoxetine, showed a rapid antidepressant effect in KO mice by normalizing increased synaptogenesis in the NAc. In addition, bilateral infusion of ANA-12 into NAc promoted a rapid antidepressant effect in KO mice by normalizing increased synaptogenesis in the NAc. These findings suggest that increased BDNF-TrkB signaling and synaptogenesis in the NAc by deletion of α7 nAChR plays a key role in depression. PMID:27821848

  14. Chemistry and behavioral studies identify chiral cyclopropanes as selective α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor partial agonists exhibiting an antidepressant profile.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hankun; Tückmantel, Werner; Eaton, J Brek; Yuen, Po-Wai; Yu, Li-Fang; Bajjuri, Krishna Mohan; Fedolak, Allison; Wang, Daguang; Ghavami, Afshin; Caldarone, Barbara; Paterson, Neil E; Lowe, David A; Brunner, Daniela; Lukas, Ronald J; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2012-01-26

    Despite their discovery in the early 20th century and intensive study over the last 20 years, nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are still far from being well understood. Only a few chemical entities targeting nAChRs are currently undergoing clinical trials, and even fewer have reached the marketplace. In our efforts to discover novel and truly selective nAChR ligands, we designed and synthesized a series of chiral cyclopropane-containing α4β2-specific ligands that display low nanomolar binding affinities and excellent subtype selectivity while acting as partial agonists at α4β2-nAChRs. Their favorable antidepressant-like properties were demonstrated in the classical mouse forced swim test. Preliminary ADMET studies and broad screening toward other common neurotransmitter receptors were also carried out to further evaluate their safety profile and eliminate their potential off-target activity. These highly potent cyclopropane ligands possess superior subtype selectivity compared to other α4β2-nAChR agonists reported to date, including the marketed drug varenicline, and therefore may fully satisfy the crucial prerequisite for avoiding adverse side effects. These novel chemical entities could potentially be advanced to the clinic as new drug candidates for treating depression.

  15. Binding of quinolizidine alkaloids to nicotinic and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Schmeller, T; Sauerwein, M; Sporer, F; Wink, M; Müller, W E

    1994-09-01

    Fourteen quinolizidine alkaloids, isolated from Lupinus albus, L. mutabilis, and Anagyris foetida, were analyzed for their affinity for nicotinic and/or muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Of the compounds tested, the alpha-pyridones, N-methylcytisine and cytisine, showed the highest affinities at the nicotinic receptor, while several quinolizidine alkaloid types were especially active at the muscarinic receptor.

  16. Varenicline is a potent partial agonist at α6β2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in rat and monkey striatum.

    PubMed

    Bordia, Tanuja; Hrachova, Maya; Chin, Matthew; McIntosh, J Michael; Quik, Maryka

    2012-08-01

    Extensive evidence indicates that varenicline reduces nicotine craving and withdrawal symptoms by modulating dopaminergic function at α4β2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) (the asterisk indicates the possible presence of other nicotinic subunits in the receptor complex). More recent data suggest that α6β2* nAChRs also regulate dopamine release and mediate nicotine reinforcement. The present experiments were therefore done to test the effect of varenicline on α6β2* nAChRs and their function, because its interaction with this subtype is currently unclear. Receptor competition studies showed that varenicline inhibited α6β2* nAChR binding (K(i) = 0.12 nM) as potently as α4β2* nAChR binding (K(i) = 0.14 nM) in rat striatal sections and with ∼20-fold greater affinity than nicotine. Functionally, varenicline was more potent in stimulating α6β2* versus α4β2* nAChR-mediated [(3)H]dopamine release from rat striatal synaptosomes with EC(50) values of 0.007 and 0.086 μM, respectively. However, it acted as a partial agonist on α6β2* and α4β2* nAChR-mediated [(3)H]dopamine release with maximal efficacies of 49 and 24%, respectively, compared with nicotine. We also evaluated varenicline's action in striatum of monkeys, a useful animal model for comparison with humans. Varenicline again potently inhibited monkey striatal α6β2* (K(i) = 0.13 nM) and α4β2* (K(i) = 0.19 nM) nAChRs in competition studies. Functionally, it potently stimulated both α6β2* (EC(50) = 0.014 μM) and α4β2* (EC(50) = 0.029 μM) nAChR-mediated [(3)H]dopamine release from monkey striatal synaptosomes, again acting as a partial agonist relative to nicotine at both subtypes. These data suggest that the ability of varenicline to interact at α6β2* nAChRs may contribute to its efficacy as a smoking cessation aid.

  17. Megakaryocytes and platelets express nicotinic acetylcholine receptors but nicotine does not affect megakaryopoiesis or platelet function.

    PubMed

    Schedel, Angelika; Kaiser, Kerstin; Uhlig, Stefanie; Lorenz, Florian; Sarin, Anip; Starigk, Julian; Hassmann, Dennis; Bieback, Karen; Bugert, Peter

    2016-01-01

    In our previous investigations we have shown that platelets and their precursors express nicotinic α7 acetylcholine receptors (nAChRα7) that are involved in platelet function and in vitro differentiation of the megakaryoblastic cell line MEG-01. In this study, we were interested in the expression analysis of additional nAChR and the effects of nicotine in an ex vivo model using megakaryocytic cells differentiated from cord blood derived CD34(+) cells (CBMK) and an in vivo model using blood samples from smokers. CBMK were differentiated with thrombopoietin (TPO) for up to 17 days. Quantitative real-time PCR (QRT-PCR), Western blot analysis and flow cytometry were used to investigate nAChR expression (nAChRα7, nAChRα4, nAChRβ2) and nicotine effects. In blood samples of 15 nonsmokers and 16 smokers platelet parameters (count, mean platelet volume--MPV and platelet distribution width--PDW) were determined as indicators for changes of in vivo megakaryopoiesis. Platelet function was determined by the use of whole blood aggregometry and flow cytometry. The functional role of nAChR was evaluated using specific antagonists in aggregometry. CHRNA7, CHRNA4 and CHRNB2 gene transcripts and the corresponding proteins could be identified in CBMK during all stages of differentiation. Platelets contain nAChRα7 and nAChRβ2 but not nAChRα4. Nicotine had no effect on TPO-induced differentiation of CBMK. There was no significant difference in all platelet parameters of the smokers compared to the nonsmokers. In line with this, cholinergic gene transcripts as well as the encoded proteins were equally expressed in both the study groups. Despite our observation of nAChR expression in megakaryopoiesis and platelets, we were not able to detect effects of nicotine in our ex vivo and in vivo models. Thus, the functional role of the nAChR in these cells remains open.

  18. Expression of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit mRNAs in rat hippocampal GABAergic interneurons.

    PubMed

    Son, Jong-Hyun; Winzer-Serhan, Ursula H

    2008-11-10

    Hippocampal inhibitory interneurons are a diverse population of cells widely scattered in the hippocampus, where they regulate hippocampal circuit activity. The hippocampus receives cholinergic projections from the basal forebrain, and functional studies have suggested the presence of different subtypes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) on gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic interneurons. Single-cell polymerase chain reaction analysis had confirmed that several nAChR subunit mRNAs are co-expressed with glutamate decarboxylase 67 (GAD67), the marker for GABAergic interneurons. In this anatomical study, we systematically investigated the co-expression of GAD67 with different nAChR subunits by using double in situ hybridization with a digoxigenin-labeled GAD67 probe and (35)S-labeled probes for nAChR subunits (alpha2, alpha3, alpha4, alpha5, alpha6, alpha7, beta2, beta3, and beta4). The results revealed that most GAD67-positive interneurons expressed beta2, and 67 % also expressed alpha7 mRNA. In contrast, mRNA expression of other subunits was limited; only 13 % of GAD67-positive neurons co-expressed alpha4, and less than 10% expressed transcripts for alpha2, alpha3, alpha5, or beta4. Most GAD67/alpha2 co-expression was located in CA1/CA3 stratum oriens, and GAD67/alpha5 co-expression was predominantly detected in CA1/CA3 stratum radiatum/lacunosum moleculare and the dentate gyrus. Expression of alpha6 and beta3 mRNAs was rarely detected in the hippocampus, and mRNAs were not co-expressed with GAD67. These findings suggest that the majority of nicotinic responses in GABAergic interneurons should be mediated by a homomeric alpha7 or heteromeric alpha7*-containing nAChRs. Other possible combinations such as alpha2beta2*, alpha4beta2*, or alpha5beta2* heteromeric nAChRs could contribute to functional nicotinic response in subsets of GABAergic interneurons but overall would have a minor role.

  19. Type I and II positive allosteric modulators differentially modulate agonist-induced up-regulation of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Thomsen, Morten S; Mikkelsen, Jens D

    2012-10-01

    Long-term treatment with nicotine or selective α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) agonists increases the number of α7 nAChRs and this up-regulation may be involved in the mechanism underlying the sustained procognitive effect of these compounds. Here, we investigate the influence of type I and II α7 nAChR positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) on agonist-induced α7 nAChR up-regulation. We show that the type II PAMs, PNU-120596 (10 μM) or TQS (1 and 10 μM), inhibit up-regulation, as measured by protein levels, induced by the α7 nAChR agonist A-582941 (10 nM or 10 μM), in SH-EP1 cells stably expressing human α7 nAChR, whereas the type I PAMs AVL-3288 or NS1738 do not. Contrarily, neither type I nor II PAMs affect 10 μM nicotine-induced receptor up-regulation, suggesting that nicotine and A-582941 induce up-regulation through different mechanisms. We further show in vivo that 3 mg/kg PNU-120596 inhibits up-regulation of the α7 nAChR induced by 10 mg/kg A-582941, as measured by [(125)I]-bungarotoxin autoradiography, whereas 1 mg/kg AVL-3288 does not. Given that type II PAMs decrease desensitization of the receptor, whereas type I PAMs do not, these results suggest that receptor desensitization is involved in A-582941-induced up-regulation. Our results are the first to show an in vivo difference between type I and II α7 nAChR PAMs, and demonstrate an agonist-dependent effect of type II PAMs occurring on a much longer time scale than previously appreciated. Furthermore, our data suggest that nicotine and A-582941 induce up-regulation through different mechanisms, and that this confers differential sensitivity to the effects of α7 nAChR PAMs. These results may have implications for the clinical development of α7 nAChR PAMs.

  20. 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.

  1. Venomous secretions from marine snails of the Terebridae family target acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Kendel, Yvonne; Melaun, Christian; Kurz, Alexander; Nicke, Annette; Peigneur, Steve; Tytgat, Jan; Wunder, Cora; Mebs, Dietrich; Kauferstein, Silke

    2013-05-21

    Venoms from cone snails (Conidae) have been extensively studied during the last decades, but those from other members of the suborder Toxoglossa, such as of Terebridae and Turridae superfamilies attracted less interest so far. Here, we report the effects of venom and gland extracts from three species of the superfamily Terebridae. By 2-electrode voltage-clamp technique the gland extracts were tested on Xenopus oocytes expressing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) of rat neuronal (α3β2, α3β4, α4β2, α4β4, α7) and muscle subtypes (α1β1γδ), and expressing potassium (Kv1.2 and Kv1.3) and sodium channels (Nav1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.6). The extracts were shown to exhibit remarkably high inhibitory activities on almost all nAChRs tested, in particular on the α7 subtype suggesting the presence of peptides of the A-superfamily from the venom of Conus species. In contrast, no effects on the potassium and sodium channels tested were observed. The venoms of terebrid snails may offer an additional source of novel biologically active peptides.

  2. Alpha5 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor mediates nicotine-induced HIF-1α and VEGF expression in non-small cell lung cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Ma, Xiaoli; Jia, Yanfei; Zu, Shanshan; Li, Ruisheng; Jia, Ying; Zhao, Yun; Xiao, Dongjie; Dang, Ningning; Wang, Yunshan

    2014-07-15

    By binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), nicotine induces the proliferation and apoptosis of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Previous studies have indicated that α5-nAChR is highly associated with lung cancer risk and nicotine dependence. However, the mechanisms through which α5-nAChRs may influence lung carcinogenesis are far from clear. In the present study, we investigated the roles of α5-nAChR in the nicotine-induced expression of hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Immunohistochemistry was used to detect the expression of α5-nAChR and HIF-1α in 60 specimens of lung cancer and para-carcinoma tissue. The correlations between the expression levels of α5-nAChR and HIF-1α and other clinicopathological data were analyzed. In a cell line that highly expressed α5-nAChR, the loss of α5-nAChR function by siRNA was used to study whether α5-nAChR is involved in the nicotine-induced expression of HIF-1α and VEGF through the activation of the ERK1/2 and PI3K/Akt signaling pathways. Cell growth was detected using the cell counting kit-8 (CCK-8). α5-nAChR (78.3%) and HIF-1α (88.3%) were both overexpressed in NSCLC, and their expression levels were found to be correlated with each other (P < 0.05). In the A549 cell line, α5-nAChR and HIF-1α were found to be expressed under normal conditions, and their expression levels were significantly increased in response to nicotine treatment. The silencing of α5-nAChR significantly inhibited the nicotine-induced cell proliferation compared with the control group and attenuated the nicotine-induced upregulation of HIF-1α and VEGF, and these effects required the cooperation of the ERK1/2 and PI3K/Akt signaling pathways. These results show that the α5-nAChR/HIF-1α/VEGF axis is involved in nicotine-induced tumor cell proliferation, which suggests that α5-nAChR may serve as a potential anticancer target in nicotine-associated lung cancer. - Highlights

  3. Expression of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor α4 and β2 Subunits on Direction-Selective Retinal Ganglion Cells in the Rabbit

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jun-Seok; Kim, Hyun-Jin; Ahn, Chang-Hyun; Jeon, Chang-Jin

    2017-01-01

    The direction selectivity of the retina is a distinct mechanism that is critical function of eyes for survival. The direction-selective retinal ganglion cells (DS RGCs) strongly respond to a preferred direction, but rarely respond to opposite direction or null directional visual stimuli. The DS RGCs are sensitive to acetylcholine, which is secreted from starburst amacrine cells (SACs) to the DS RGCs. Here, we investigated the existence and distribution of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) α4 and β2 subunits on the dendritic arbors of the DS RGCs in adult rabbit retina using immunocytochemistry. The DS RGCs were injected with Lucifer yellow to identify their dendritic morphology. The double-labeled images of dendrites and nAChR subunits were visualized for reconstruction using high-resolution confocal microscopy. Although our results revealed that the distributional pattern of the nAChR subunits on the dendritic arbors of the DS RGCs was not asymmetric in the adult rabbit retina, the distribution of nAChR α4 and β2 subunits and molecular profiles of cholinergic inputs to DS RGCs in adult rabbit retina provide anatomical evidence for direction selectivity. PMID:28386148

  4. Alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists and PAMs as adjunctive treatment in schizophrenia. An experimental study.

    PubMed

    Marcus, Monica M; Björkholm, Carl; Malmerfelt, Anna; Möller, Annie; Påhlsson, Ninni; Konradsson-Geuken, Åsa; Feltmann, Kristin; Jardemark, Kent; Schilström, Björn; Svensson, Torgny H

    2016-09-01

    Nicotine has been found to improve cognition and reduce negative symptoms in schizophrenia and a genetic and pathophysiological link between the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and schizophrenia has been demonstrated. Therefore, there has been a large interest in developing drugs affecting the α7 nAChRs for schizophrenia. In the present study we investigated, in rats, the effects of a selective α7 agonist (PNU282987) and a α7 positive allosteric modulator (PAM; NS1738) alone and in combination with the atypical antipsychotic drug risperidone for their utility as adjunct treatment in schizophrenia. Moreover we also investigated their utility as adjunct treatment in depression in combination with the SSRI citalopram. We found that NS1738 and to some extent also PNU282987, potentiated a subeffective dose of risperidone in the conditioned avoidance response test. Both drugs also potentiated the effect of a sub-effective concentration of risperidone on NMDA-induced currents in pyramidal cells of the medial prefrontal cortex. Moreover, NS1738 and PNU282987 enhanced recognition memory in the novel object recognition test, when given separately. Both drugs also potentiated accumbal but not prefrontal risperidone-induced dopamine release. Finally, PNU282987 reduced immobility in the forced swim test, indicating an antidepressant-like effect. Taken together, our data support the utility of drugs targeting the α7 nAChRs, perhaps especially α7 PAMs, to potentiate the effect of atypical antipsychotic drugs. Moreover, our data suggest that α7 agonists and PAMs can be used to ameliorate cognitive symptoms in schizophrenia and depression.

  5. Cognitive improvements in a mouse model with substituted 1,2,3-triazole agonists for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Arunrungvichian, Kuntarat; Boonyarat, Chantana; Fokin, Valery V; Taylor, Palmer; Vajragupta, Opa

    2015-08-19

    The α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) is a recognized drug target for dementias of aging and certain developmental disorders. Two selective and potent α7-nAChR agonists, winnowed from a list of 43 compounds characterized in a companion article (DOI: 10.1021/acschemneuro.5b00058), 5-((quinuclid-3-yl)-1H-1,2,3-triazol-4-yl)-1H-indole (IND8) and 3-(4-hydroxyphenyl-1,2,3-triazol-1-yl) quinuclidine (QND8), were evaluated for cognitive improvement in both short- and long-term memory. Tacrine, a centrally active acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, and PNU-282987, a congeneric α7 nAChR agonist, were employed as reference standards. Three behavioral tests, modified Y-maze, object recognition test (ORT), and water maze, were performed in scopolamine-induced amnesic mice. Intraperitoneal injection of these two compounds significantly improved the cognitive impairment in a modified Y-maze test (5 μmol/kg for IND8 and 10 μmol/kg for QND8), ORT (10 μmol/kg), and water maze test (25 μmol/kg). For delay induced memory deficit or natural memory loss in mice, IND8 and QND8 at 10 μmol/kg were able to enhance memory comparable to PNU-282987 when evaluated using ORT time delay model. Cognitive enhancement of IND8 and QND8 was mediated through α7-nAChRs as evidenced by its complete abolition after pretreatment with a selective α7-nAChR antagonist, methyllycaconitine. These data demonstrate that IND8 and QND8 and their congeners are potential candidates for treatment of cognitive disorders, and the substituted triazole series formed by cycloaddition of alkynes and azides warrant further preclinical optimization.

  6. The interaction between maternal immune activation and alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in regulating behaviors in the offspring

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Wei-Li; Adams, Catherine E.; Stevens, Karen E.; Chow, Ke-Huan; Freedman, Robert; Patterson, Paul H.

    2015-01-01

    Mutation of human chromosome 15q13.3 increases the risk for autism and schizophrenia. One of the noteworthy genes in 15q13.3 is CHRNA7, which encodes the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha 7 subunit (α7nAChR) associated with schizophrenia in clinical studies and rodent models. This study investigates the role of α7nAChR in maternal immune activation (MIA) mice model, a murine model of environmental risk factor for autism and schizophrenia. We provided choline, a selective α7nAChR agonist among its several developmental roles, in the diet of C57BL/6N wild-type dams throughout the gestation and lactation period and induced MIA at mid-gestation. The adult offspring behavior and gene expression profile in the maternal spleen-placenta-fetal brain axis at mid-gestation were investigated. We found that choline supplementation prevented several MIA-induced behavioral abnormalities in the wild-type offspring. Pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-6 (IL-6) and Chrna7 gene expression in the wild-type fetal brain were elevated by poly(I:C) injection and were suppressed by gestational choline supplementation. We further investigated the gene expression level of IL-6 in Chrna7 mutant mice. We found that the basal level of IL-6 was higher in Chrna7 mutant fetal brain, which suggests that α7nAChR may serve an anti-inflammatory role in the fetal brain during development. Lastly, we induced MIA in Chrna7+/− offspring. The Chrna7+/− offspring were more vulnerable to MIA, with increased behavioral abnormalities. Our study shows that α7nAChR modulates inflammatory response affecting the fetal brain and demonstrates its effects on offspring behavior development after MIA. PMID:25683697

  7. 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

    2016-03-09

    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.

  8. Increased Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Protein Underlies Chronic Nicotine-Induced Up-Regulation of Nicotinic Agonist Binding Sites in Mouse Brain

    PubMed Central

    McClure-Begley, Tristan D.; Whiteaker, Paul; Salminen, Outi; Brown, Robert W. B.; Cooper, John; Collins, Allan C.; Lindstrom, Jon M.

    2011-01-01

    Chronic nicotine treatment elicits a brain region-selective increase in the number of high-affinity agonist binding sites, a phenomenon termed up-regulation. Nicotine-induced up-regulation of α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in cell cultures results from increased assembly and/or decreased degradation of nAChRs, leading to increased nAChR protein levels. To evaluate whether the increased binding in mouse brain results from an increase in nAChR subunit proteins, C57BL/6 mice were treated with nicotine by chronic intravenous infusion. Tissue sections were prepared, and binding of [125I]3-((2S)-azetidinylmethoxy)-5-iodo-pyridine (A85380) to β2*-nAChR sites, [125I]monoclonal antibody (mAb) 299 to α4 nAChR subunits, and [125I]mAb 270 to β2 nAChR subunits was determined by quantitative autoradiography. Chronic nicotine treatment dose-dependently increased binding of all three ligands. In regions that express α4β2-nAChR almost exclusively, binding of all three ligands increased coordinately. However, in brain regions containing significant β2*-nAChR without α4 subunits, relatively less increase in mAb 270 binding to β2 subunits was observed. Signal intensity measured with the mAbs was lower than that with [125I]A85380, perhaps because the small ligand penetrated deeply into the sections, whereas the much larger mAbs encountered permeability barriers. Immunoprecipitation of [125I]epibatidine binding sites with mAb 270 in select regions of nicotine-treated mice was nearly quantitative, although somewhat less so with mAb 299, confirming that the mAbs effectively recognize their targets. The patterns of change measured using immunoprecipitation were comparable with those determined autoradiographically. Thus, increases in α4β2*-nAChR binding sites after chronic nicotine treatment reflect increased nAChR protein. PMID:21228066

  9. The 15q13.3 deletion syndrome: Deficient α(7)-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated neurotransmission in the pathogenesis of neurodevelopmental disorders.

    PubMed

    Deutsch, Stephen I; Burket, Jessica A; Benson, Andrew D; Urbano, Maria R

    2016-01-04

    Array comparative genomic hybridization (array CGH) has led to the identification of microdeletions of the proximal region of chromosome 15q between breakpoints (BP) 3 or BP4 and BP5 encompassing CHRNA7, the gene encoding the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) subunit. Phenotypic manifestations of persons with these microdeletions are variable and some heterozygous carriers are seemingly unaffected, consistent with their variable expressivity and incomplete penetrance. Nonetheless, the 15q13.3 deletion syndrome is associated with several neuropsychiatric disorders, including idiopathic generalized epilepsy, intellectual disability, autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and schizophrenia. Haploinsufficient expression of CHRNA7 in this syndrome has highlighted important roles the α7nAChR plays in the developing brain and normal processes of attention, cognition, memory and behavior throughout life. Importantly, the existence of the 15q13.3 deletion syndrome contributes to an emerging literature supporting clinical trials therapeutically targeting the α7nAChR in disorders such as ASDs and schizophrenia, including the larger population of patients with no evidence of haploinsufficient expression of CHRNA7. Translational clinical trials will be facilitated by the existence of positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) of the α7nAChR that act at sites on the receptor distinct from the orthosteric site that binds acetylcholine and choline, the receptor's endogenous ligands. PAMs lack intrinsic efficacy by themselves, but act where and when the endogenous ligands are released in response to relevant social and cognitive provocations to increase the likelihood they will result in α7nAChR ion channel activation.

  10. In hippocampal oriens interneurons anti-Hebbian long-term potentiation requires cholinergic signaling via α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Griguoli, Marilena; Cellot, Giada; Cherubini, Enrico

    2013-01-16

    In the hippocampus, at excitatory synapses between principal cell and oriens/alveus (O/A) interneurons, a particular form of NMDA-independent long-term synaptic plasticity (LTP) has been described (Lamsa et al., 2007). This type of LTP occurs when presynaptic activation coincides with postsynaptic hyperpolarization. For this reason it has been named "anti-Hebbian" to distinguish from the classical Hebbian type of associative learning where presynaptic glutamate release coincides with postsynaptic depolarization. The different voltage dependency of LTP induction is thought to be mediated by calcium-permeable (CP) AMPA receptors that, due to polyamine-mediated rectification, favor calcium entry at hyperpolarized potentials. Here, we report that the induction of this form of LTP needs CP-α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) that, like CP-AMPARs, exhibit a strong inward rectification because of polyamine block at depolarizing potentials. We found that high-frequency stimulation of afferent fibers elicits synaptic currents mediated by α7 nAChRs. Hence, LTP was prevented by α7 nAChR antagonists dihydro-β-erythroidine and methyllycaconitine (MLA) and was absent in α7(-/-) mice. In addition, in agreement with previous observations (Le Duigou and Kullmann, 2011), in a minority of O/A interneurons in MLA-treated hippocampal slices from WT animals and α7(-/-) mice, a form of LTP probably dependent on the activation of group I metabotropic glutamate receptors was observed. These data indicate that, in O/A interneurons, anti-Hebbian LTP critically depends on cholinergic signaling via α7 nAChR. This may influence network oscillations and information processing.

  11. Discovery of Potent Positive Allosteric Modulators of the α3β2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor by a Chemical Space Walk in ChEMBL

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    While a plethora of ligands are known for the well studied α7 and α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), only very few ligands address the related α3β2 nAChR expressed in the central nervous system and at the neuromuscular junction. Starting with the public database ChEMBL organized in the chemical space of Molecular Quantum Numbers (MQN, a series of 42 integer value descriptors of molecular structure), a visual survey of nearest neighbors of the α7 nAChR partial agonist N-(3R)-1-azabicyclo[2.2.2]oct-3-yl-4-chlorobenzamide (PNU-282,987) pointed to N-(2-halobenzyl)-3-aminoquinuclidines as possible nAChR modulators. This simple “chemical space walk” was performed using a web-browser available at www.gdb.unibe.ch. Electrophysiological recordings revealed that these ligands represent a new and to date most potent class of positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) of the α3β2 nAChR, which also exert significant effects in vivo. The present discovery highlights the value of surveying chemical space neighbors of known drugs within public databases to uncover new pharmacology. PMID:24593915

  12. Characterization of a Novel α-Conotoxin from Conus textile That Selectively Targets α6/α3β2β3 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors*

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Sulan; Zhangsun, Dongting; Wu, Yong; Zhu, Xiaopeng; Hu, Yuanyan; McIntyre, Melissa; Christensen, Sean; Akcan, Muharrem; Craik, David J.; McIntosh, J. Michael

    2013-01-01

    α6β2 Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed by dopaminergic neurons in the CNS are potential therapeutic targets for the treatment of several neuropsychiatric diseases, including nicotine addiction and Parkinson disease. However, recent studies indicate that the α6 subunit can also associate with the β4 subunit to form α6β4 nAChRs that are difficult to pharmacologically distinguish from α6β2, α3β4, and α3β2 subtypes. The current study characterized a novel 16-amino acid α-conotoxin (α-CTx) TxIB from Conus textile whose sequence is GCCSDPPCRNKHPDLC-amide as deduced from gene cloning. The peptide and an analog with an additional C-terminal glycine were chemically synthesized and tested on rat nAChRs heterologously expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. α-CTx TxIB blocked α6/α3β2β3 nAChR with an IC50 of 28 nm. In contrast, the peptide showed little or no block of other tested subtypes at concentrations up to 10 μm. The three-dimensional solution structure of α-CTx TxIB was determined using NMR spectroscopy. α-CTx TxIB represents a uniquely selective ligand for probing the structure and function of α6β2 nAChRs. PMID:23184959

  13. The prototoxin LYPD6B modulates heteromeric α3β4-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, but not α7 homomers

    PubMed Central

    Ochoa, Vanessa; George, Andrew A.; Nishi, Rae; Whiteaker, Paul

    2015-01-01

    Prototoxins are a diverse family of membrane-tethered molecules expressed in the nervous system that modulate nicotinic cholinergic signaling, but their functions and specificity have yet to be completely explored. We tested the selectivity and efficacy of leukocyte antigen, PLAUR (plasminogen activator, urokinase receptor) domain-containing (LYPD)-6B on α3β4-, α3α5β4-, and α7-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). To constrain stoichiometry, fusion proteins encoding concatemers of human α3, β4, and α5 (D and N variants) subunits were expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes and tested with or without LYPD6B. We used the 2-electrode voltage-clamp method to quantify responses to acetylcholine (ACh): agonist sensitivity (EC50), maximal agonist-induced current (Imax), and time constant (τ) of desensitization. For β4–α3–α3–β4–α3 and β4–α3–β4–α3–α3, LYPD6B decreased EC50 from 631 to 79 μM, reduced Imax by at least 59%, and decreased τ. For β4–α3–α5D–β4–α3 and β4–α3–β4–α–α5D, LYPD6B decreased Imax by 63 and 32%, respectively. Thus, LYPD6B acted only on (α3)3(β4)2 and (α3)2(α5D)(β4)2 and did not affect the properties of (α3)2(β4)3, α7, or (α3)2(α5N)(β4)2 nAChRs. Therefore, LYPD6B acts as a mixed modulator that enhances the sensitivity of (α3)3(β4)2 nAChRs to ACh while reducing ACh-induced whole-cell currents. LYPD6B also negatively modulates α3β4 nAChRs that include the α5D common human variant, but not the N variant associated with nicotine dependence.—Ochoa, V., George, A. A., Nishi, R., Whiteaker, P. The prototoxin LYPD6B modulates heteromeric α3β4-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, but not α7 homomers. PMID:26586467

  14. RIC-3 affects properties and quantity of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors via a mechanism that does not require the coiled-coil domains.

    PubMed

    Ben-Ami, Hagit Cohen; Yassin, Lina; Farah, Hanna; Michaeli, Avner; Eshel, Margalit; Treinin, Millet

    2005-07-29

    Members of the RIC-3 gene family are effectors of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) expression in vertebrates and invertebrates. In Caenorhabditis elegans RIC-3 is needed for functional expression of multiple nAChRs, including the DEG-3/DES-2 nAChR. Effects of RIC-3 on DEG-3/DES-2 functional expression are found in vivo and following heterologous expression in Xenopus leavis oocytes. We now show that in X. leavis oocytes RIC-3 also affects the kinetics and agonist affinity properties of the DEG-3/DES-2 receptor. Because these effects are mimicked by increasing the ratio of DEG-3 subunits within DEG-3/DES-2 receptors, this suggests that RIC-3 may preferentially promote maturation of DEG-3-rich receptors. Indeed, effects of RIC-3 on functional expression of DEG-3/DES-2 positively correlate with the DEG-3 to DES-2 ratio. All RIC-3 family members have two transmembrane domains followed by one or two coiled-coil domains. Here we show that the effects of RIC-3 on functional expression and on receptor properties are mediated by the transmembrane domains and do not require the coiled-coil domains. In agreement with this, mammals express a RIC-3 transcript lacking the coiled-coil domain that is capable of promoting DEG-3/DES-2 functional expression. Last, we show that RIC-3 affects DEG-3 quantity, suggesting stabilization of receptors or receptor intermediates by RIC-3. Together our results suggest that subunit-specific interactions of RIC-3 with nAChR subunits, mediated by the transmembrane domains, are sufficient for the effects of RIC-3 on nAChR quantity and quality.

  15. Dimeric α-cobratoxin X-ray structure: localization of intermolecular disulfides and possible mode of binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Osipov, Alexey V; Rucktooa, Prakash; Kasheverov, Igor E; Filkin, Sergey Yu; Starkov, Vladislav G; Andreeva, Tatyana V; Sixma, Titia K; Bertrand, Daniel; Utkin, Yuri N; Tsetlin, Victor I

    2012-02-24

    In Naja kaouthia cobra venom, we have earlier discovered a covalent dimeric form of α-cobratoxin (αCT-αCT) with two intermolecular disulfides, but we could not determine their positions. Here, we report the αCT-αCT crystal structure at 1.94 Å where intermolecular disulfides are identified between Cys(3) in one protomer and Cys(20) of the second, and vice versa. All remaining intramolecular disulfides, including the additional bridge between Cys(26) and Cys(30) in the central loops II, have the same positions as in monomeric α-cobratoxin. The three-finger fold is essentially preserved in each protomer, but the arrangement of the αCT-αCT dimer differs from those of noncovalent crystallographic dimers of three-finger toxins (TFT) or from the κ-bungarotoxin solution structure. Selective reduction of Cys(26)-Cys(30) in one protomer does not affect the activity against the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), whereas its reduction in both protomers almost prevents α7 nAChR recognition. On the contrary, reduction of one or both Cys(26)-Cys(30) disulfides in αCT-αCT considerably potentiates inhibition of the α3β2 nAChR by the toxin. The heteromeric dimer of α-cobratoxin and cytotoxin has an activity similar to that of αCT-αCT against the α7 nAChR and is more active against α3β2 nAChRs. Our results demonstrate that at least one Cys(26)-Cys(30) disulfide in covalent TFT dimers, similar to the monomeric TFTs, is essential for their recognition by α7 nAChR, although it is less important for interaction of covalent TFT dimers with the α3β2 nAChR.

  16. Optical studies of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes in the guinea-pig enteric nervous system.

    PubMed

    Obaid, A L; Nelson, M E; Lindstrom, J; Salzberg, B M

    2005-08-01

    Nicotinic transmission in the enteric nervous system (ENS) is extensive, but the role of individual nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtypes in the functional connectivity of its plexuses has been elusive. Using monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against neuronal alpha3-, alpha4-, alpha3/alpha5-, beta2-, beta4- and alpha7-subunits, combined with radioimmunoassays and immunocytochemistry, we demonstrate that guinea-pig enteric ganglia contain all of these nAChR-subunits with the exception of alpha4, and so, differ from mammalian brain. This information alone, however, is insufficient to establish the functional role of the identified nAChR-subtypes within the enteric networks and, ultimately, their specific contributions to gastrointestinal physiology. We have used voltage-sensitive dyes and a high-speed CCD camera, in conjunction with specific antagonists to various nAChRs, to elucidate some of the distinct contributions of the individual subtypes to the behaviour of enteric networks. In the guinea-pig, the submucous plexus has the extraordinary advantage that it is virtually two-dimensional, permitting optical recording, with single cell resolution, of the electrical activity of all of its neurones. In this plexus, the block of alpha3beta2-, alpha3beta4- and/or alpha7-nAChRs always results in a decrease in the magnitude of the synaptic response. However, the magnitude of the fast excitatory post-synaptic potentials (epsps) evoked by electrical stimulation of a neighbouring ganglion varies from cell to cell, reflecting the differential expression of subunits already observed using mAbs, as well as the strengths of the activated synaptic inputs. At the same time, we observe that submucous neurones have a substantial mecamylamine (Mec)-insensitive (non-nicotinic) component to their fast epsps, which may point to the presence of purinergic or serotonergic fast epsps in this system. In the myenteric plexus, on the other hand, the antagonist-induced changes in the

  17. Identification of a family of muscarinic acetylcholine receptor genes

    SciTech Connect

    Bonner, T.I.; Buckley, N.J.; Young, A.C.; Brann, M.R.

    1987-07-31

    Complementary DNAs for three different muscarinic acetylcholine receptors were isolated from a rat cerebral cortex library, and the cloned receptors were expressed in mammalian cells. Analysis of human and rat genomic clones indicates that there are at least four functional muscarinic receptor genes and that these genes lack introns in the coding sequence. This gene family provides a new basis for evaluating the diversity of muscarinic mechanisms in the nervous system.

  18. A nicotinic acetylcholine receptor transmembrane point mutation (G275E) associated with resistance to spinosad in Frankliniella occidentalis

    PubMed Central

    Puinean, Alin M; Lansdell, Stuart J; Collins, Toby; Bielza, Pablo; Millar, Neil S

    2013-01-01

    High levels of resistance to spinosad, a macrocyclic lactone insecticide, have been reported previously in western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis, an economically important insect pest of vegetables, fruit and ornamental crops. We have cloned the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) α6 subunit from F. occidentalis (Foα6) and compared the nucleotide sequence of Foα6 from susceptible and spinosad-resistant insect populations (MLFOM and R1S respectively). A single nucleotide change has been identified in Foα6, resulting in the replacement of a glycine (G) residue in susceptible insects with a glutamic acid (E) in resistant insects. The resistance-associated mutation (G275E) is predicted to lie at the top of the third α-helical transmembrane domain of Foα6. Although there is no direct evidence identifying the location of the spinosad binding site, the analogous amino acid in the C. elegans glutamate-gated chloride channel lies in close proximity (4.4 Å) to the known binding site of ivermectin, another macrocyclic lactone pesticide. The functional consequences of the resistance-associated mutation have been examined in the human nAChR α7 subunit. Introduction of an analogous (A272E) mutation in α7 abolishes the modulatory effects of spinosad whilst having no significant effect upon activation by acetylcholine, consistent with spinosad having an allosteric mechanism of action. PMID:23016960

  19. Putative nicotinic acetylchloline receptor subunits express differentially through life cycle of codling moth, Cydia pomonella (L.) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are the targets of neonicotinoids and spinosads, two insecticides used in orchards to effectively control codling moth, Cydia pomonella (L.)(Lepidoptera: Tortricidae). The nAChRs mediate the fast actions of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine in synaptic tr...

  20. Endoplasmic reticulum stress contributes to acetylcholine receptor degradation by promoting endocytosis in skeletal muscle cells.

    PubMed

    Du, Ailian; Huang, Shiqian; Zhao, Xiaonan; Zhang, Yun; Zhu, Lixun; Ding, Ji; Xu, Congfeng

    2016-01-15

    After binding by acetylcholine released from a motor neuron, a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor at the neuromuscular junction produces a localized end-plate potential, which leads to muscle contraction. Improper turnover and renewal of acetylcholine receptors contributes to the pathogenesis of myasthenia gravis. In the present study, we demonstrate that endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress contributes to acetylcholine receptor degradation in C2C12 myocytes. We further show that ER stress promotes acetylcholine receptor endocytosis and lysosomal degradation, which was dampened by blocking endocytosis or treating with lysosome inhibitor. Knockdown of ER stress proteins inhibited acetylcholine receptor endocytosis and degradation, while rescue assay restored its endocytosis and degradation, confirming the effects of ER stress on promoting endocytosis-mediated degradation of junction acetylcholine receptors. Thus, our studies identify ER stress as a factor promoting acetylcholine receptor degradation through accelerating endocytosis in muscle cells. Blocking ER stress and/or endocytosis might provide a novel therapeutic approach for myasthenia gravis.

  1. Lack of modulation of nicotinic acetylcholine alpha-7 receptor currents by kynurenic acid in adult hippocampal interneurons.

    PubMed

    Dobelis, Peter; Staley, Kevin J; Cooper, Donald C

    2012-01-01

    Kynurenic acid (KYNA), a classical ionotropic glutamate receptor antagonist is also purported to block the α7-subtype nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7* nAChR). Although many published studies cite this potential effect, few have studied it directly. In this study, the α7*-selective agonist, choline, was pressure-applied to interneurons in hippocampal subregions, CA1 stratum radiatum and hilus of acute brain hippocampal slices from adolescent to adult mice and adolescent rats. Stable α7* mediated whole-cell currents were measured using voltage-clamp at physiological temperatures. The effects of bath applied KYNA on spontaneous glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic potentials (sEPSC) as well as choline-evoked α7* currents were determined. In mouse hilar interneurons, KYNA totally blocked sEPSC whole-cell currents in a rapid and reversible manner, but had no effect on choline-evoked α7* whole-cell currents. To determine if this lack of KYNA effect on α7* function was due to regional and/or species differences in α7* nAChRs, the effects of KYNA on choline-evoked α7* whole-cell currents in mouse and rat stratum radiatum interneurons were tested. KYNA had no effect on either mouse or rat stratum radiatum interneuron choline-evoked α7* whole-cell currents. Finally, to test whether the lack of effect of KYNA was due to unlikely slow kinetics of KYNA interactions with α7* nAChRs, recordings of a7*-mediated currents were made from slices that were prepared and stored in the presence of 1 mM KYNA (>90 minutes exposure). Under these conditions, KYNA had no measurable effect on α7* nAChR function. The results show that despite KYNA-mediated blockade of glutamatergic sEPSCs, two types of hippocampal interneurons that express choline-evoked α7* nAChR currents fail to show any degree of modulation by KYNA. Our results indicate that under our experimental conditions, which produced complete KYNA-mediated blockade of sEPSCs, claims of KYNA effects on choline

  2. 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

    2010-12-06

    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

  3. α-Conotoxins Identify the α3β4* Subtype as the Predominant Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Expressed in Human Adrenal Chromaffin Cells.

    PubMed

    Hone, Arik J; McIntosh, J Michael; Azam, Layla; Lindstrom, Jon; Lucero, Linda; Whiteaker, Paul; Passas, Juan; Blázquez, Jesús; Albillos, Almudena

    2015-11-01

    Ligands that selectively inhibit human α3β2 and α6β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChRs) and not the closely related α3β4 and α6β4 subtypes are lacking. Current α-conotoxins (α-Ctxs) that discriminate among these nAChR subtypes in rat fail to discriminate among the human receptor homologs. In this study, we describe the development of α-Ctx LvIA(N9R,V10A) that is 3000-fold more potent on oocyte-expressed human α3β2 than α3β4 and 165-fold more potent on human α6/α3β2β3 than α6/α3β4 nAChRs. This analog was used in conjuction with three other α-Ctx analogs and patch-clamp electrophysiology to characterize the nAChR subtypes expressed by human adrenal chromaffin cells. LvIA(N9R,V10A) showed little effect on the acetylcholine-evoked currents in these cells at concentrations expected to inhibit nAChRs with β2 ligand-binding sites. In contrast, the β4-selective α-Ctx BuIA(T5A,P6O) inhibited >98% of the acetylcholine-evoked current, indicating that most of the heteromeric receptors contained β4 ligand-binding sites. Additional studies using the α6-selective α-Ctx PeIA(A7V,S9H,V10A,N11R,E14A) indicated that the predominant heteromeric nAChR expressed by human adrenal chromaffin cells is the α3β4* subtype (asterisk indicates the possible presence of additional subunits). This conclusion was supported by polymerase chain reaction experiments of human adrenal medulla gland and of cultured human adrenal chromaffin cells that demonstrated prominent expression of RNAs for α3, α5, α7, β2, and β4 subunits and a low abundance of RNAs for α2, α4, α6, and α10 subunits.

  4. α-Conotoxins Identify the α3β4* Subtype as the Predominant Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Expressed in Human Adrenal Chromaffin Cells

    PubMed Central

    Hone, Arik J.; McIntosh, J. Michael; Azam, Layla; Lindstrom, Jon; Lucero, Linda; Whiteaker, Paul; Passas, Juan; Blázquez, Jesús

    2015-01-01

    Ligands that selectively inhibit human α3β2 and α6β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChRs) and not the closely related α3β4 and α6β4 subtypes are lacking. Current α-conotoxins (α-Ctxs) that discriminate among these nAChR subtypes in rat fail to discriminate among the human receptor homologs. In this study, we describe the development of α-Ctx LvIA(N9R,V10A) that is 3000-fold more potent on oocyte-expressed human α3β2 than α3β4 and 165-fold more potent on human α6/α3β2β3 than α6/α3β4 nAChRs. This analog was used in conjuction with three other α-Ctx analogs and patch-clamp electrophysiology to characterize the nAChR subtypes expressed by human adrenal chromaffin cells. LvIA(N9R,V10A) showed little effect on the acetylcholine-evoked currents in these cells at concentrations expected to inhibit nAChRs with β2 ligand-binding sites. In contrast, the β4-selective α-Ctx BuIA(T5A,P6O) inhibited >98% of the acetylcholine-evoked current, indicating that most of the heteromeric receptors contained β4 ligand-binding sites. Additional studies using the α6-selective α-Ctx PeIA(A7V,S9H,V10A,N11R,E14A) indicated that the predominant heteromeric nAChR expressed by human adrenal chromaffin cells is the α3β4* subtype (asterisk indicates the possible presence of additional subunits). This conclusion was supported by polymerase chain reaction experiments of human adrenal medulla gland and of cultured human adrenal chromaffin cells that demonstrated prominent expression of RNAs for α3, α5, α7, β2, and β4 subunits and a low abundance of RNAs for α2, α4, α6, and α10 subunits. PMID:26330550

  5. Amino acids outside of the loops that define the agonist binding site are important for ligand binding to insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zewen; Han, Zhaojun; Liu, Shuhua; Zhang, Yixi; Song, Feng; Yao, Xiangmei; Gu, Jianhua

    2008-07-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptors (nAChRs) are the targets of several kinds of insecticides. Based on the mutagenesis studies of Torpedo californica nAChRs and solved structure of a molluscan, glial-derived soluble ACh-binding protein, a model of the agonist site was constructed with contributing amino acids from three distinct loops (A, B, and C) of the alpha subunits and another three loops (D, E, and F) of the non-alpha subunits. According to this model, most insect nAChR subunits can form the functional heteromeric or homomeric receptors. Actually, insect subunits themselves did not form any functional receptor at various combinations as yet, and only part of them can form the functional receptors with vertebrate non-alpha subunits. These findings suggested that the agonist binding for insect nAChRs was not only contributed by those key amino acids in six loops, but also some unidentified amino acids from other regions. In our previous studies on nAChRs for Nilaparvata lugens, a target-site mutation (Y151S) was found within two alpha subunits (Nlalpha1 and Nlalpha3). In Drosophila S2 cells and Xenopus oocytes, Nlalpha1 can form functional receptors with rat beta2 subunit. However, the same thing was not observed in Nlalpha3. In the present paper, by exchanging the corresponding regions between Nlalpha1 and Nlalpha3 to generate different chimeras, amino acid residues or residue clusters in the regions outside the six loops were found to play essential roles in agonist binding, especially for the amino acid clusters between loop B and C. This result indicated that the residues in the six loops could be necessary, but not enough for the activity of agonist binding.

  6. Varenicline, a partial agonist at neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, reduces nicotine-induced increases in 20% ethanol operant self-administration in Sprague-Dawley rats.

    PubMed

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

    2011-07-01

    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 (0.2 mg/kg and 0.8 mg/kg, s.c.) significantly increases operant 20% ethanol self-administration and varenicline (2 mg/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.

  7. Reduction in mRNA and protein expression of a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α8 subunit is associated with resistance to imidacloprid in the brown planthopper, Nilaparvata lugens.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yixi; Wang, Xin; Yang, Baojun; Hu, Yuanyuan; Huang, Lixin; Bass, Chris; Liu, Zewen

    2015-11-01

    Target-site resistance is commonly caused by qualitative changes in insecticide target-receptors and few studies have implicated quantitative changes in insecticide targets in resistance. Here we show that resistance to imidacloprid in a selected strain of Nilaparvata lugens is associated with a reduction in expression levels of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit Nlα8. Synergism bioassays of the selected strain suggested resistance was conferred, in part, by a target-site mechanism. Sequencing of N. lugens nAChR subunit genes identified no mutations associated with resistance, however, a decrease in mRNA and protein levels of Nlα8 was observed during selection. RNA interference knockdown of Nlα8 decreased the sensitivity of N. lugens to imidacloprid, demonstrating that a decrease in Nlα8 expression is sufficient to confer resistance in vivo. Radioligand binding assays revealed that the affinity of the high-affinity imidacloprid-binding site of native nAChRs was reduced by selection, and reducing the amount of Nlα8 cRNA injected into Xenopus oocytes significantly decreased imidacloprid potency on recombinant receptors. Taken together, these results provide strong evidence that a decrease in Nlα8 levels confers resistance to imidacloprid in N. lugens, and thus provides a rare example of target-site resistance associated with a quantitative rather than qualitative change. In insects, target-site mutations often cause high resistance to insecticides, such as neonicotinoids acting on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Here we found that a quantitative change in target-protein level, decrease in mRNA and protein levels of Nlα8, contributed importantly to imidacloprid resistance in Nilaparvata lugens. This finding provides a new target-site mechanism of insecticide resistance.

  8. Mechanisms of Action of Anticholinesterases and Oximes on Acetylcholine Receptors

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-07-23

    J.F. and D.B. Sanders. The management of patients with myasthenia gravis , in Myasthenia Gravis (E.X. Albuquerque and A.T. Eldefrawi, eds.), Chapman...Eldefrawi. Affinity of myasthenia drugs to acetylcholinesterase and acetylcholine receptor. Biochem. Med. 10:258-265 (1974). 9. Carpenter, D.O., L.A

  9. Marine Natural Products Acting on the Acetylcholine-Binding Protein and Nicotinic Receptors: From Computer Modeling to Binding Studies and Electrophysiology

    PubMed Central

    Kudryavtsev, Denis; Makarieva, Tatyana; Utkina, Natalia; Santalova, Elena; Kryukova, Elena; Methfessel, Christoph; Tsetlin, Victor; Stonik, Valentin; Kasheverov, Igor

    2014-01-01

    For a small library of natural products from marine sponges and ascidians, in silico docking to the Lymnaea stagnalis acetylcholine-binding protein (AChBP), a model for the ligand-binding domains of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), was carried out and the possibility of complex formation was revealed. It was further experimentally confirmed via competition with radioiodinated α-bungarotoxin ([125I]-αBgt) for binding to AChBP of the majority of analyzed compounds. Alkaloids pibocin, varacin and makaluvamines С and G had relatively high affinities (Ki 0.5–1.3 μM). With the muscle-type nAChR from Torpedo californica ray and human neuronal α7 nAChR, heterologously expressed in the GH4C1 cell line, no competition with [125I]-αBgt was detected in four compounds, while the rest showed an inhibition. Makaluvamines (Ki ~ 1.5 μM) were the most active compounds, but only makaluvamine G and crambescidine 359 revealed a weak selectivity towards muscle-type nAChR. Rhizochalin, aglycone of rhizochalin, pibocin, makaluvamine G, monanchocidin, crambescidine 359 and aaptamine showed inhibitory activities in electrophysiology experiments on the mouse muscle and human α7 nAChRs, expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Thus, our results confirm the utility of the modeling studies on AChBPs in a search for natural compounds with cholinergic activity and demonstrate the presence of the latter in the analyzed marine biological sources. PMID:24686559

  10. α-Conotoxin BuIA[T5A;P6O]: a novel ligand that discriminates between α6ß4 and α6ß2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and blocks nicotine-stimulated norepinephrine release.

    PubMed

    Azam, Layla; Maskos, Uwe; Changeux, Jean-Pierre; Dowell, Cheryl D; Christensen, Sean; De Biasi, Mariella; McIntosh, J Michael

    2010-12-01

    α6* (asterisk indicates the presence of additional subunits) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are broadly implicated in catecholamine-dependent disorders that involve attention, motor movement, and nicotine self-administration. Different molecular forms of α6 nAChRs mediate catecholamine release, but receptor differentiation is greatly hampered by a paucity of subtype selective ligands. α-Conotoxins are nAChR-targeted peptides used by Conus species to incapacitate prey. We hypothesized that distinct conotoxin-binding kinetics could be exploited to develop a series of selective probes to enable study of native receptor subtypes. Proline6 of α-conotoxin BuIA was found to be critical for nAChR selectivity; substitution of proline6 with 4-hydroyxproline increased the IC(50) by 2800-fold at α6/α3β2β3 but only by 6-fold at α6/α3β4 nAChRs (to 1300 and 12 nM, respectively). We used conotoxin probes together with subunit-null mice to interrogate nAChR subtypes that modulate hippocampal norepinephrine release. Release was abolished in α6-null mutant mice. α-Conotoxin BuIA[T5A;P6O] partially blocked norepinephrine release in wild-type controls but failed to block release in β4(-/-) mice. In contrast, BuIA[T5A;P6O] failed to block dopamine release in the wild-type striatum known to contain α6β2* nAChRs. BuIA[T5A;P6O] is a novel ligand for distinguishing between closely related α6* nAChRs; α6β4* nAChRs modulate norepinephrine release in hippocampus but not dopamine release in striatum.

  11. Computational analysis of the binding ability of heterocyclic and conformationally constrained epibatidine analogs in the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Soriano, Elena; Marco-Contelles, José; Colmena, Inés; Gandía, Luis

    2010-05-01

    One of the most critical issues on the study of ligand-receptor interactions in drug design is the knowledge of the bioactive conformation of the ligand. In this study, we describe a computational approach aimed at estimating the binding ability of epibatidine analogs to interact with the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) and get insights into the bioactive conformation. The protocol followed consists of a docking analysis and evaluation of pharmacophore parameters of the docked structures. On the basis of the biological data, the results have revealed that the docking analysis is able to predict active ligands, whereas further efforts are needed to develop a suitable and solid pharmacophore model.

  12. The pharmacological activity of nicotine and nornicotine on nAChRs subtypes: relevance to nicotine dependence and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Papke, Roger L; Dwoskin, Linda P; Crooks, Peter A

    2007-04-01

    Cigarette smoking and other forms of tobacco use deliver an array of pharmacologically active alkaloids, including nicotine and ultimately various metabolites of these substances. While nornicotine is a significant component in tobacco as well as a minor systemic metabolite of nicotine, nornicotine appears to be N-demethylated locally in the brain where it accumulates at relatively high levels after chronic nicotine administration. We have now examined the effects of nornicotine on specific combinations of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits expressed in Xenopus oocytes and compared these responses to those evoked by acetylcholine and nicotine. Of the nAChR subtypes studied, we have found that alpha7 receptors are very responsive to nornicotine (EC50 approximately 17 micromol/L I(max) 50%, compared with acetylcholine (ACh)). nAChRs containing the ligand-binding domain of the alpha6 subunits (in the form of an alpha6/alpha3 chimera) are also strongly responsive to nornicotine (EC50 approximately 4 micromol/L I(max) 50%, compared with ACh). Alpha7-type nAChRs have been suggested to be potential therapeutic targets for Alzheimer's disease, schizophrenia and possibly other pathologies. nAChRs containing alpha6 subunits have been suggested to have a role in nicotine-evoked dopamine release. Thus, understanding the actions of nornicotine in the brain may have significance for both emerging therapeutics and the management of nicotine dependence.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    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. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Menthol, the most popular flavorant for tobacco products, has been considered simply a benign flavor additive. However, as we show here

  14. Research tool: Validation of floxed α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor conditional knockout mice using in vitro and in vivo approaches.

    PubMed

    Hernandez, Caterina M; Cortez, Ibdanelo; Gu, Zhenglin; Colón-Sáez, José O; Lamb, Patricia W; Wakamiya, Maki; Yakel, Jerrel L; Dineley, Kelly T

    2014-08-01

    There is much interest in α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in CNS function since they are found throughout peripheral tissues as well as being highly expressed in brain regions implicated in attention, learning and memory. As such, the role of these receptors in many aspects of CNS function and disease is being actively investigated. To date, only one null mouse model (A7KO) is available which is non-conditional and constitutive. Since α7 nAChRs are present on neurons and glia (including astrocytes), as well as being developmentally regulated, there is an unmet need for the technical capability to control α7 nAChR gene expression. Therefore we have generated mice in which the fourth exon of the α7 nAChR gene (Chrna7) is flanked by loxP sites (B6-Chrna7(LBDEx4007Ehs)) which we refer to as floxed α7 nAChR conditional knockout or α7nAChR(flox). We validated the chosen approach by mating α7nAChR(flox) with mice expressing Cre recombinase driven by the glial acidic fibrillary protein (GFAP)-Cre promoter (GFAP-A7KO) to test whether α7nAChR(flox), GFAP-A7KO and appropriate littermate controls performed equally in our standard Rodent In Vivo Assessment Core battery to assess general health, locomotion, emotional and cognitive behaviours. Neither α7nAChR(flox) nor GFAP-A7KO exhibited significant differences from littermate controls in any of the baseline behavioural assessments we conducted, similar to the 'first generation' non-conditional A7KO mice. We also determined that α7 nAChR binding sites were absent on GFAP-positive astrocytes in hippocampal slices obtained from GFAP-A7KO offspring from α7nAChR(flox) and GFAP-Cre crosses. Finally, we validated that Cre recombinase (Cre)-mediated excision led to functional, cell- and tissue-specific loss of α7 nAChRs by demonstrating that choline-induced α7 nAChR currents were present in Cre-negative, but not synapsin promoter-driven Cre-positive, CA1 pyramidal neurons. Additionally, electrophysiological

  15. Genetic deletion of the adenosine A(2A) receptor prevents nicotine-induced upregulation of α7, but not α4β2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptor binding in the brain.

    PubMed

    Metaxas, Athanasios; Al-Hasani, Ream; Farshim, Pamela; Tubby, Kristina; Berwick, Amy; Ledent, Catherine; Hourani, Susanna; Kitchen, Ian; Bailey, Alexis

    2013-08-01

    Considerable evidence indicates that adenosine A(2A) receptors (A(2A)Rs) modulate cholinergic neurotransmission, nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) function, and nicotine-induced behavioural effects. To explore the interaction between A(2A) and nAChRs, we examined if the complete genetic deletion of adenosine A(2A)Rs in mice induces compensatory alterations in the binding of different nAChR subtypes, and whether the long-term effects of nicotine on nAChR regulation are altered in the absence of the A(2A)R gene. Quantitative autoradiography was used to measure cytisine-sensitive [¹²⁵I]epibatidine and [¹²⁵I]α-bungarotoxin binding to α4β2* and α7 nAChRs, respectively, in brain sections of drug-naïve (n = 6) or nicotine treated (n = 5-7), wild-type and adenosine A(2A)R knockout mice. Saline or nicotine (7.8 mg/kg/day; free-base weight) were administered to male CD1 mice via subcutaneous osmotic minipumps for a period of 14 days. Blood plasma levels of nicotine and cotinine were measured at the end of treatment. There were no compensatory developmental alterations in nAChR subtype distribution or density in drug-naïve A(2A)R knockout mice. In nicotine treated wild-type mice, both α4β2* and α7 nAChR binding sites were increased compared with saline treated controls. The genetic ablation of adenosine A(2A)Rs prevented nicotine-induced upregulation of α7 nAChRs, without affecting α4β2* receptor upregulation. This selective effect was observed at plasma levels of nicotine that were within the range reported for smokers (10-50 ng ml⁻¹). Our data highlight the involvement of adenosine A(2A)Rs in the mechanisms of nicotine-induced α7 nAChR upregulation, and identify A(2A)Rs as novel pharmacological targets for modulating the long-term effects of nicotine on α7 receptors.

  16. Differential sensitivity of Ctenocephalides felis and Drosophila melanogaster nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α1 and α2 subunits in recombinant hybrid receptors to nicotinoids and neonicotinoid insecticides.

    PubMed

    Dederer, Helene; Werr, Margaret; Ilg, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are the binding sites for nicotinoid drugs, such as nicotine and epibatidine, and are the molecular targets of the selectively insecticidal neonicotinoids. In this study we report the full length cDNA cloning of the three Ctenocephalides (C.) felis (cat flea) nAChR α subunits Cfα1, Cfα2, and Cfα3. When expressed in Xenopus oocytes as hybrid receptors with the Gallus gallus (chicken) β2 (Ggβ2) subunit, these cat flea α subunits formed acetylcholine-responsive ion channels. Acetylcholine-evoked currents of Cfα2/Ggβ2 were resistant to α-bungarotoxin, while those of Cfα1/Ggβ2 were sensitive to this snake toxin. The pharmacological profiles of Cfα1/Ggβ2, Cfα2/Ggβ2 and the chicken neuronal receptor Ggα4/Ggβ2 for acetylcholine, two nicotinoids and 6 insecticidal neonicotinoids were determined and compared. Particularly remarkable was the finding that Cfα1/Ggβ2 was far more sensitive to acetylcholine, nicotine and neonicotinoid agonists than either Cfα2/Ggβ2 or Ggα4/Ggβ2: for the anti flea neonicotinoid market compound imidacloprid the respective EC₅₀s were 0.02 μM, 1.31 μM and 10 μM. These results were confirmed for another insect species, Drosophila melanogaster, where the pharmacological profile of the Dmα1 and Dmα2 subunits as hybrid receptors with Ggβ2 in Xenopus oocyte expressions resulted in a similar sensitivity pattern as those identified for the C. felis orthologs. Our results show that at least in a Ggβ2 hybrid receptor setting, insect α1 subunits confer higher sensitivity to neonicotinoids than α2 subunits, which may contribute in vivo to the insect-selective action of this pesticide class.

  17. High affinity α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor ligands AT-1001 and AT-1012 attenuate cocaine-induced conditioned place preference and behavioral sensitization in mice.

    PubMed

    Khroyan, Taline V; Yasuda, Dennis; Toll, Lawrence; Polgar, Willma E; Zaveri, Nurulain T

    2015-10-15

    Cholinergic signaling via the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the mesolimbic circuitry is involved in the rewarding effects of abused drugs such as cocaine and opioids. In mouse studies, nonselective nAChR antagonist mecamylamine blocks cocaine-induced conditioned place preference (CPP) and behavioral sensitization. Among subtype-selective nAChR antagonists, the β2-selective antagonist dihydrobetaerythroidine and α7 antagonist methyllycaconitine (MLA), but not MLA alone prevent behavioral sensitization to cocaine. Since the role of the α3β4 nAChR subtype in the rewarding and behavioral effects of cocaine is unknown, the present study investigated the effect of two potent and selective α3β4 nAChR ligands, AT-1001 and AT-1012, on the acquisition of cocaine-induced CPP and behavioral sensitization in mice. At 5-30mg/kg, cocaine produced robust CPP, whereas behavioral sensitization of locomotor activity was only observed at the higher doses (20-30mg/kg). Pretreatment with AT-1001 (1-10mg/kg) or AT-1012 (3-10mg/kg) blocked CPP induced by 5mg/kg cocaine, but not by 30mg/kg cocaine. Lower doses of AT-1001 (0.3-1mg/kg) and AT-1012 (1-3mg/kg) did not affect the increase in locomotor activity induced by 5 or 30mg/kg cocaine. But AT-1001, at these doses, blocked locomotor sensitization induced by 30mg/kg cocaine. These results indicate that the α3β4 nAChR play a role in the rewarding and behavioral effects of cocaine, and that selective α3β4 nAChR ligands can attenuate cocaine-induced behavioral phenomena. Since the selective α3β4 nAChR functional antagonist AT-1001 has also been shown to block nicotine self-administration in rats, the present results suggest that α3β4 nAChRs may be a target for the treatment of cocaine addiction as well as for cocaine-nicotine comorbid addiction.

  18. Spin labeled acetylcholine analogs: studies of cholinergic receptor.

    PubMed

    Rosen, G M; Abou-Donia, M B; Yeh, J Z; Menzel, D B

    1975-10-01

    Some spin-labeled acetylcholine analogs, in which the number of methylene groups between the quaternary nitrogen and the ether oxygen ranged between 1-5, were synthesized to study drug interacitons with acetylcholine receptors. None of the compounds tested, with the exception of the one that contained 2 methylene groups (SL-2) had any cholinergic activity. SL-2 was not capable of producing any nicotinic cholinomimetic activity. On the other hand it proved to have a very weak nicotinic cholinolytic activity on the receptors of the frog satorius muscle. This compound exhibited strong antagonism against muscarinic receptors of the isolated frog heart. The muscarinic cholinolytic action of the spin-label ACh analog is discussed in terms of the molecular perturbation theory of drug action.

  19. Pemphigus vulgaris antibodies target the mitochondrial nicotinic acetylcholine receptors that protect keratinocytes from apoptolysis.

    PubMed

    Chernyavsky, Alex; Chen, Yumay; Wang, Ping H; Grando, Sergei A

    2015-11-01

    The mechanism of detachment and death of keratinocytes in pemphigus vulgaris (PV) involves pro-apoptotic action of constellations of autoantibodies determining disease severity and response to treatment. The presence of antibodies to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and the therapeutic efficacy of cholinomimetics in PV is well-established. Recently, adsorption of anti-mitochondrial antibodies abolished the ability of PVIgGs to cause acantholysis, demonstrating their pathophysiological significance. Since, in addition to cell membrane, nAChRs are also present on the mitochondrial outer membrane, wherein they act to prevent activation of intrinsic (mitochondrial apoptosis), we hypothesized that mitochondrial (mt)-nAChRs might be targeted by PVIgGs. To test this hypothesis, we employed the immunoprecipitation-western blot assay of keratinocyte mitochondrial proteins that visualized the α3, α5, α7, α9, α10, β2 and β4 mt-nAChR subunits precipitated by PV IgGs, suggesting that functions of mt-nAChRs are compromised in PV. To pharmacologically counteract the pro-apoptotic action of anti-mitochondrial antibodies in PV, we exposed naked keratinocyte mitochondria to PVIgGs in the presence of the nicotinic agonist nicotine ± antagonists, and measured cytochrome c (CytC) release. Nicotine abolished PVIgG-dependent CytC release, showing a dose-dependent effect, suggesting that protection of mitochondria can be a novel mechanism of therapeutic action of nicotinic agonists in PV. The obtained results indicated that the mt-nAChRs targeted by anti-mitochondrial antibodies produced by PV patients are coupled to inhibition of CytC release, and that nicotinergic stimulation can abolish PVIgG-dependent activation of intrinsic apoptosis in KCs. Future studies should determine if and how the distinct anti-mt-nAChR antibodies penetrate KCs and correlate with disease severity.

  20. Acetylcholine induces GABA release onto rod bipolar cells through heteromeric nicotinic receptors expressed in A17 amacrine cells

    PubMed Central

    Elgueta, Claudio; Vielma, Alex H.; Palacios, Adrian G.; Schmachtenberg, Oliver

    2015-01-01

    Acetylcholine (ACh) is a major retinal neurotransmitter that modulates visual processing through a large repertoire of cholinergic receptors expressed on different retinal cell types. ACh is released from starburst amacrine cells (SACs) under scotopic conditions, but its effects on cells of the rod pathway have not been investigated. Using whole-cell patch clamp recordings in slices of rat retina, we found that ACh application triggers GABA release onto rod bipolar (RB) cells. GABA was released from A17 amacrine cells and activated postsynaptic GABAA and GABAC receptors in RB cells. The sensitivity of ACh-induced currents to nicotinic ACh receptor (nAChR) antagonists (TMPH ~ mecamylamine > erysodine > DhβE > MLA) together with the differential potency of specific agonists to mimic ACh responses (cytisine >> RJR2403 ~ choline), suggest that A17 cells express heteromeric nAChRs containing the β4 subunit. Activation of nAChRs induced GABA release after Ca2+ accumulation in A17 cell dendrites and varicosities mediated by L-type voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) and intracellular Ca2+ stores. Inhibition of acetylcholinesterase depolarized A17 cells and increased spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents in RB cells, indicating that endogenous ACh enhances GABAergic inhibition of RB cells. Moreover, injection of neostigmine or cytisine reduced the b-wave of the scotopic flash electroretinogram (ERG), suggesting that cholinergic modulation of GABA release controls RB cell activity in vivo. These results describe a novel regulatory mechanism of RB cell inhibition and complement our understanding of the neuromodulatory control of retinal signal processing. PMID:25709566

  1. The prototoxin LYPD6B modulates heteromeric α3β4-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, but not α7 homomers.

    PubMed

    Ochoa, Vanessa; George, Andrew A; Nishi, Rae; Whiteaker, Paul

    2016-03-01

    Prototoxins are a diverse family of membrane-tethered molecules expressed in the nervous system that modulate nicotinic cholinergic signaling, but their functions and specificity have yet to be completely explored. We tested the selectivity and efficacy of leukocyte antigen, PLAUR (plasminogen activator, urokinase receptor) domain-containing (LYPD)-6B on α3β4-, α3α5β4-, and α7-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). To constrain stoichiometry, fusion proteins encoding concatemers of human α3, β4, and α5 (D and N variants) subunits were expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes and tested with or without LYPD6B. We used the 2-electrode voltage-clamp method to quantify responses to acetylcholine (ACh): agonist sensitivity (EC50), maximal agonist-induced current (Imax), and time constant (τ) of desensitization. For β4-α3-α3-β4-α3 and β4-α3-β4-α3-α3, LYPD6B decreased EC50 from 631 to 79 μM, reduced Imax by at least 59%, and decreased τ. For β4-α3-α5D-β4-α3 and β4-α3-β4-α-α5D, LYPD6B decreased Imax by 63 and 32%, respectively. Thus, LYPD6B acted only on (α3)3(β4)2 and (α3)2(α5D)(β4)2 and did not affect the properties of (α3)2(β4)3, α7, or (α3)2(α5N)(β4)2 nAChRs. Therefore, LYPD6B acts as a mixed modulator that enhances the sensitivity of (α3)3(β4)2 nAChRs to ACh while reducing ACh-induced whole-cell currents. LYPD6B also negatively modulates α3β4 nAChRs that include the α5D common human variant, but not the N variant associated with nicotine dependence.

  2. Alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor is required for amyloid pathology in brain endothelial cells induced by Glycoprotein 120, methamphetamine and nicotine

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Liqun; Yu, Jingyi; Li, Li; Zhang, Bao; Liu, Lingjuan; Wu, Chun-Hua; Jong, Ambrose; Mao, Ding-An; Huang, Sheng-He

    2017-01-01

    One of the most challenging issues in HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) caused by HIV-1 virotoxins and drug abuse is the lack of understanding the underlying mechanisms that are commonly associated with disorders of the blood-brain barrier (BBB), which mainly consists of brain microvascular endothelial cells (BMEC). Here, we hypothesized that Glycoprotein 120 (gp120), methamphetamine (METH) and nicotine (NT) can enhance amyloid-beta (Aβ) accumulation in BMEC through Alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7 nAChR). Both in vitro (human BMEC) (HBMEC) and in vivo (mice) models of BBB were used to dissect the role of α7 nAChR in up-regulation of Aβ induced by gp120, METH and NT. Aβ release from and transport across HBMEC were significantly increased by these factors. Methyllycaconitine (MLA), an antagonist of α7 nAChR, could efficiently block these pathogenic effects. Furthermore, our animal data showed that these factors could significantly increase the levels of Aβ, Tau and Ubiquitin C-Terminal Hydrolase L1 (UCHL1) in mouse cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and Aβ in the mouse brains. These pathogenicities were significantly reduced by MLA, suggesting that α7 nAChR may play an important role in neuropathology caused by gp120, METH and NT, which are the major pathogenic factors contributing to the pathogenesis of HAND. PMID:28074940

  3. Reducing inflammation and rescuing FTD-related behavioral deficits in progranulin-deficient mice with α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists.

    PubMed

    Minami, S Sakura; Shen, Vivian; Le, David; Krabbe, Grietje; Asgarov, Rustam; Perez-Celajes, Liberty; Lee, Chih-Hung; Li, Jinhe; Donnelly-Roberts, Diana; Gan, Li

    2015-10-15

    Mutations in the progranulin gene cause frontotemporal dementia (FTD), a debilitating neurodegenerative disease that involves atrophy of the frontal and temporal lobes and affects personality, behavior, and language. Progranulin-deficient mouse models of FTD exhibit deficits in compulsive and social behaviors reminiscent of patients with FTD, and develop excessive microgliosis and increased release of inflammatory cytokines. Activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) by nicotine or specific α7 nAChR agonists reduces neuroinflammation. Here, we investigated whether activation of nAChRs by nicotine or α7 agonists improved the excessive inflammatory and behavioral phenotypes of a progranulin-deficient FTD mouse model. We found that treatment with selective α7 agonists, PHA-568487 or ABT-107, strongly suppressed the activation of NF-κB in progranulin-deficient cells. Treatment with ABT-107 also reduced microgliosis, decreased TNFα levels, and reduced compulsive behavior in progranulin-deficient mice. Collectively, these data suggest that targeting activation of the α7 nAChR pathway may be beneficial in decreasing neuroinflammation and reversing some of the behavioral deficits observed in progranulin-deficient FTD.

  4. Nicotine promotes cell proliferation via {alpha}7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and catecholamine-synthesizing enzymes-mediated pathway in human colon adenocarcinoma HT-29 cells

    SciTech Connect

    Wong, Helen Pui Shan; Yu Le; Lam, Emily Kai Yee; Tai, Emily Kin Ki; Wu, William Ka Kei; Cho, Chi Hin . E-mail: chcho@cuhk.edu.hk

    2007-06-15

    Cigarette smoking has been implicated in colon cancer. Nicotine is a major alkaloid in cigarette smoke. In the present study, we showed that nicotine stimulated HT-29 cell proliferation and adrenaline production in a dose-dependent manner. The stimulatory action of nicotine was reversed by atenolol and ICI 118,551, a {beta}{sub 1}- and {beta}{sub 2}-selective antagonist, respectively, suggesting the role of {beta}-adrenoceptors in mediating the action. Nicotine also significantly upregulated the expression of the catecholamine-synthesizing enzymes [tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), dopamine-{beta}-hydroxylase (D{beta}H) and phenylethanolamine N-methyltransferase]. Inhibitor of TH, a rate-limiting enzyme in the catecholamine-biosynthesis pathway, reduced the actions of nicotine on cell proliferation and adrenaline production. Expression of {alpha}7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor ({alpha}7-nAChR) was demonstrated in HT-29 cells. Methyllycaconitine, an {alpha}7-nAChR antagonist, reversed the stimulatory actions of nicotine on cell proliferation, TH and D{beta}H expression as well as adrenaline production. Taken together, through the action on {alpha}7-nAChR nicotine stimulates HT-29 cell proliferation via the upregulation of the catecholamine-synthesis pathway and ultimately adrenaline production and {beta}-adrenergic activation. These data reveal the contributory role {alpha}7-nAChR and {beta}-adrenoceptors in the tumorigenesis of colon cancer cells and partly elucidate the carcinogenic action of cigarette smoke on colon cancer.

  5. A novel α4/7-conotoxin LvIA from Conus lividus that selectively blocks α3β2 vs. α6/α3β2β3 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Sulan; Zhangsun, Dongting; Schroeder, Christina I.; Zhu, Xiaopeng; Hu, Yuanyan; Wu, Yong; Weltzin, Maegan M.; Eberhard, Spencer; Kaas, Quentin; Craik, David J.; McIntosh, J. Michael; Whiteaker, Paul

    2014-01-01

    This study was performed to discover and characterize the first potent α3β2-subtype-selective nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) ligand. A novel α4/7-conotoxin, α-CTxLvIA, was cloned from Conus lividus. Its pharmacological profile at Xenopus laevis oocyte-expressed rat nAChR subtypes was determined by 2-electrode voltage-clamp electrophysiology, and its 3-dimensional (3D) structure was determined by NMR spectroscopy. α-CTx LvIA is a 16-aa C-terminally-amidated peptide with 2-disulfide bridges. Using rat subunits expressed in Xenopus oocytes, we found the highest affinity of α-CTxLvIA was for α3β2 nAChRs (IC50 8.7 nM), where blockade was reversible within 2 min. IC50 values were >100 nM at α6/α3β2β3, α6/α3β4, and α3β4 nAChRs, and ≥3 μM at all other subtypes tested. α3β2 vs. α6β2 subtype selectivity was confirmed for human-subunit nAChRs with much greater preference (300-fold) for α3β2 over α6β2 nAChRs. This is the first α-CTx reported to show high selectivity for human α3β2 vs. α6β2 nAChRs. α-CTxLvIA adopts two similarly populated conformations water: one (assumed to be bioactive) is highly structured, whereas the other is mostly random coil in nature. Selectivity differences with the similarly potent, but less selective, α3β2 nAChR antagonist α-CTx PeIA probably reside within the three residues, which differ in loop 2, given their otherwise similar 3D structures. α4/7-CTx LvIA is a new, potent, selective α3β2 nAChR antagonist, which will enable detailed studies of α3β2 nAChR structure, function, and physiological roles.—Luo, S., Zhangsun, D., Schroeder, C. I., Zhu, X., Hu, Y., Wu, Y., Weltzin, M. M., Eberhard, S., Kaas, Q., Craik, D. J., McIntosh, J. M., Whiteaker, P. A novel α4/7-conotoxin LvIA from Conus lividus that selectively blocks α3β2 vs. α6/α3β2β3 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. PMID:24398291

  6. AT-1001: a high affinity and selective α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist blocks nicotine self-administration in rats.

    PubMed

    Toll, Lawrence; Zaveri, Nurulain T; Polgar, Willma E; Jiang, Faming; Khroyan, Taline V; Zhou, Wei; Xie, Xinmin Simon; Stauber, Gregory B; Costello, Matthew R; Leslie, Frances M

    2012-05-01

    Genomic and pharmacologic data have suggested the involvement of the α3β4 subtype of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in drug seeking to nicotine and other drugs of abuse. In order to better examine this receptor subtype, we have identified and characterized the first high affinity and selective α3β4 nAChR antagonist, AT-1001, both in vitro and in vivo. This is the first reported compound with a Ki below 10 nM at α3β4 nAChR and >90-fold selectivity over the other major subtypes, the α4β2 and α7 nAChR. AT-1001 competes with epibatidine, allowing for [³H]epibatidine binding to be used for structure-activity studies, however, both receptor binding and ligand-induced Ca²⁺ flux are not strictly competitive because increasing ligand concentration produces an apparent decrease in receptor number and maximal Ca²⁺ fluorescence. AT-1001 also potently and reversibly blocks epibatidine-induced inward currents in HEK cells transfected with α3β4 nAChR. Importantly, AT-1001 potently and dose-dependently blocks nicotine self-administration in rats, without affecting food responding. When tested in a nucleus accumbens (NAcs) synaptosomal preparation, AT-1001 inhibits nicotine-induced [³H]dopamine release poorly and at significantly higher concentrations compared with mecamylamine and conotoxin MII. These results suggest that its inhibition of nicotine self-administration in rats is not directly due to a decrease in dopamine release from the NAc, and most likely involves an indirect pathway requiring α3β4 nAChR. In conclusion, our studies provide further evidence for the involvement of α3β4 nAChR in nicotine self-administration. These findings suggest the utility of this receptor as a target for smoking cessation medications, and highlight the potential of AT-1001 and congeners as clinically useful compounds.

  7. Activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors enhances a slow calcium-dependent potassium conductance and reduces the firing of stratum oriens interneurons.

    PubMed

    Griguoli, Marilena; Scuri, Rossana; Ragozzino, Davide; Cherubini, Enrico

    2009-09-01

    A large variety of distinct locally connected GABAergic cells are present in the hippocampus. By releasing GABA into principal cells and interneurons, they exert a powerful control on neuronal excitability and are responsible for network oscillations crucial for information processing in the brain. Here, whole-cell patch clamp recordings in current and voltage clamp mode were used to study the functional role of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) on the firing properties of stratum oriens interneurons in hippocampal slices from transgenic mice expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein in a subpopulation of GABAergic cells containing somatostatin (GIN mice). Unexpectedly, activation of nAChRs by nicotine or endogenously released acetylcholine strongly enhanced spike frequency adaptation. This effect was blocked by apamin, suggesting the involvement of small calcium-dependent potassium channels (SK channels). Nicotine-induced reduction in firing frequency was dependent on intracellular calcium rise through calcium-permeable nAChRs and voltage-dependent calcium channels activated by the depolarizing action of nicotine. Calcium imaging experiments directly showed that nicotine effects on firing rate were correlated with large increases in intracellular calcium. Furthermore, blocking ryanodine receptors with ryanodine or sarcoplasmic-endoplasmic reticulum calcium ATPase with thapsygargin or cyclopiazonic acid fully prevented the effects of nicotine, suggesting that mobilization of calcium from the internal stores contributed to the observed effects. By regulating cell firing, cholinergic signalling through nAChRs would be instrumental for fine-tuning the output of stratum oriens interneurons and correlated activity at the network level.

  8. Identification and in vitro pharmacological characterization of a novel and selective α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist, Br-IQ17B

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Jing-shu; Xie, Bing-xue; Bian, Xi-ling; Xue, Yu; Wei, Ning-ning; Zhou, Jing-heng; Hao, Yu-chen; Li, Gang; Zhang, Liang-ren; Wang, Ke-wei

    2015-01-01

    Aim: Alpha7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7 nAChR) is a ligand-gated Ca2+-permeable ion channel implicated in cognition and neuropsychiatric disorders. Activation of α7 nAChR improves learning, memory, and sensory gating in animal models. To identify novel α7 nAChR agonists, we synthesized a series of small molecules and characterized a representative compound, Br-IQ17B, N-[(3R)-1-azabicyclo[2,2,2]oct-3-yl]-5-bromoindolizine-2-carboxamide, which specifically activates α7 nAChR. Methods: Two-electrode voltage clamp (TEVC) recordings were primarily used for screening in Xenopus oocytes expressing human α7 nAChR. Assays, including radioisotope ligand binding, Western blots, whole-cell recordings of hippocampal culture neurons, and spontaneous IPSC recordings of brain slices, were also utilized to evaluate and confirm the specific activation of α7 nAChR by Br-IQ17B. Results: Br-IQ17B potently activates α7 nAChR with an EC50 of 1.8±0.2 μmol/L. Br-IQ17B is selective over other subtypes such as α4β2 and α3β4, but it blocks 5-HT3A receptors. Br-IQ17B displaced binding of the α7 blocker [3H]-MLA to hippocampal crude membranes with a Ki of 14.9±3.2 nmol/L. In hippocampal neurons, Br-IQ17B evoked α7-like currents that were inhibited by MLA and enhanced in the presence of the α7 PAM PNU-120596. In brain slice recordings, Br-IQ17B enhanced GABAergic synaptic transmission in CA1 neurons. Mechanistically, Br-IQ17B increased ERK1/2 phosphorylation that was MLA-sensitive. Conclusion: We identified the novel, potent, and selective α7 agonist Br-IQ17B, which enhances synaptic transmission. Br-IQ17B may be a helpful tool to understand new aspects of α7 nAChR function, and it also has potential for being developed as therapy for schizophrenia and cognitive deficits. PMID:25948478

  9. Synthesis, Trafficking, and Localization of Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Nathanson, Neil M.

    2008-01-01

    Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors are members of the G-protein coupled receptor superfamily that are expressed in and regulate the function of neurons, cardiac and smooth muscle, glands, and many other cell types and tissues. The correct trafficking of membrane proteins to the cell surface and their subsequent localization at appropriate sites in polarized cells are required for normal cellular signaling and physiological responses. This review will summarize work on the synthesis and trafficking of muscarinic receptors to the plasma membrane and their localization at the cell surface. PMID:18558434

  10. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: from basic science to therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Hurst, Raymond; Rollema, Hans; Bertrand, Daniel

    2013-01-01

    Substantial progress in the identification of genes encoding for a large number of proteins responsible for various aspects of neurotransmitter release, postsynaptic detection and downstream signaling, has advanced our understanding of the mechanisms by which neurons communicate and interact. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors represent a large and well-characterized family of ligand-gated ion channels that is expressed broadly throughout the central and peripheral nervous system, and in non-neuronal cells. With 16 mammalian genes identified that encode for nicotinic receptors and the ability of the subunits to form heteromeric or homomeric receptors, the repertoire of conceivable receptor subtype combinations is enormous and offers unique possibilities for the design and development of new therapeutics that target nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. The aim of this review is to provide the reader with recent insights in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors from genes, structure and function to diseases, and with the latest findings on the pharmacology of these receptors. Although so far only a few nicotinic drugs have been marketed or are in late stage development, much progress has been made in the design of novel chemical entities that are being explored for the treatment of various diseases, including addiction, depression, ADHD, cognitive deficits in schizophrenia and Alzheimer's disease, pain and inflammation. A pharmacological analysis of these compounds, including those that were discontinued, can improve our understanding of the pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic requirements for nicotinic 'drug-like' molecules and will reveal if hypotheses on therapies based on targeting specific nicotinic receptor subtypes have been adequately tested in the clinic.

  11. Residues Responsible for the Selectivity of α-Conotoxins for Ac-AChBP or nAChRs

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Bo; Xiang, Shihua; Li, Mengsen

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are targets for developing new drugs to treat severe pain, nicotine addiction, Alzheimer disease, epilepsy, etc. α-Conotoxins are biologically and chemically diverse. With 12–19 residues and two disulfides, they can be specifically selected for different nAChRs. Acetylcholine-binding proteins from Aplysia californica (Ac-AChBP) are homologous to the ligand-binding domains of nAChRs and pharmacologically similar. X-ray structures of the α-conotoxin in complex with Ac-AChBP in addition to computer modeling have helped to determine the binding site of the important residues of α-conotoxin and its affinity for nAChR subtypes. Here, we present the various α-conotoxin residues that are selective for Ac-AChBP or nAChRs by comparing the structures of α-conotoxins in complex with Ac-AChBP and by modeling α-conotoxins in complex with nAChRs. The knowledge of these binding sites will assist in the discovery and design of more potent and selective α-conotoxins as drug leads. PMID:27727162

  12. Ca(2+)-sensitive inhibition by Pb(2+) of alpha7-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Mike, A; Pereira, E F; Albuquerque, E X

    2000-08-04

    In the present study the patch-clamp technique was applied to cultured hippocampal neurons to determine the kinetics as well as the agonist concentration- and Ca(2+)-dependence of Pb(2+)-induced inhibition of alpha7 nicotinic receptors (nAChRs). Evidence is provided that more than two-thirds of the inhibition by Pb(2+) (3-30 microM) of alpha7 nAChR-mediated whole-cell currents (referred to as type IA currents) develops rapidly and is fully reversible upon washing. The estimated values for tau(onset) and tau(recovery) were 165 and 240 ms, respectively. The magnitude of the effect of Pb(2+) was the same regardless of whether acetylcholine or choline was the agonist. Pre-exposure of the neurons for 800 ms to Pb(2+) (30 microM) decreased the amplitude and accelerated the decay phase of currents evoked by moderate to high agonist concentrations. In contrast, only the amplitude of currents evoked by low agonist concentrations was reduced when the neurons were exposed simultaneously to Pb(2+) and the agonists. Taken together with the findings that Pb(2+) reduces the frequency of opening and the mean open time of alpha7 nAChR channels, these data suggest that Pb(2+) accelerates the rate of receptor desensitization. An additional reduction of type IA current amplitudes occurred after 2-min exposure of the neurons to Pb(2+). This effect was not reversible upon washing of the neurons and was most likely due to an intracellular action of Pb(2+). Pb(2+)-induced inhibition of alpha7 nAChRs, which was hindered by the enhancement of extracellular Ca(2+) concentrations, may contribute to the neurotoxicity of the heavy metal.

  13. In vivo functional analysis of the Drosophila melanogaster nicotinic acetylcholine receptor Dα6 using the insecticide spinosad.

    PubMed

    Somers, Jason; Nguyen, Joseph; Lumb, Chris; Batterham, Phil; Perry, Trent

    2015-09-01

    The vinegar fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has been used to identify and manipulate insecticide resistance genes. The advancement of genome engineering technology and the increasing availability of pest genome sequences has increased the predictive and diagnostic capacity of the Drosophila model. The Drosophila model can be extended to investigate the basic biology of the interaction between insecticides and the proteins they target. Recently we have developed an in vivo system that permits the expression and study of key insecticide targets, the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), in controlled genetic backgrounds. Here this system is used to study the interaction between the insecticide spinosad and a nAChR subunit, Dα6. Reciprocal chimeric subunits were created from Dα6 and Dα7, a subunit that does not respond to spinosad. Using the in vivo system, the Dα6/Dα7 chimeric subunits were tested for their capacity to respond to spinosad. Only the subunits containing the C-terminal region of Dα6 were able to respond to spinosad, thus confirming the importance this region for spinosad binding. A new incompletely dominant, spinosad resistance mechanism that may evolve in pest species is also examined. First generated using chemical mutagenesis, the Dα6(P146S) mutation was recreated using the Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 system, the first use of this technology to introduce a resistant mutation into a controlled genetic background. Both alleles present with the same incompletely dominant, spinosad resistance phenotype, proving the P146S replacement to be the causal mutation. The proximity of the P146S mutation to the conserved Cys-loop indicates that it may impair the gating of the receptor. The results of this study enhance the understanding of nAChR structure:function relationships.

  14. Chronic Exposure to Nicotine Enhances Insulin Sensitivity through α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor-STAT3 Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Pei; Song, Jie; Le, Ying-Ying; Viollet, Benoit; Miao, Chao-Yu

    2012-01-01

    This study was to investigate the effect of nicotine on insulin sensitivity and explore the underlying mechanisms. Treatment of Sprague-Dawley rats with nicotine (3 mg/kg/day) for 6 weeks reduced 43% body weight gain and 65% blood insulin level, but had no effect on blood glucose level. Both insulin tolerance test and glucose tolerance test demonstrated that nicotine treatment enhanced insulin sensitivity. Pretreatment of rats with hexamethonium (20 mg/kg/day) to antagonize peripheral nicotinic receptors except for α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR) had no effect on the insulin sensitizing effect of nicotine. However, the insulin sensitizing effect but not the bodyweight reducing effect of nicotine was abrogated in α7-nAChR knockout mice. Further, chronic treatment with PNU-282987 (0.53 mg/kg/day), a selective α7-nAChR agonist, significantly enhanced insulin sensitivity without apparently modifying bodyweight not only in normal mice but also in AMP-activated kinase-α2 knockout mice, an animal model of insulin resistance with no sign of inflammation. Moreover, PNU-282987 treatment enhanced phosphorylation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) in skeletal muscle, adipose tissue and liver in normal mice. PNU-282987 treatment also increased glucose uptake by 25% in C2C12 myotubes and this effect was total abrogated by STAT3 inhibitor, S3I-201. All together, these findings demonstrated that nicotine enhanced insulin sensitivity in animals with or without insulin resistance, at least in part via stimulating α7-nAChR-STAT3 pathway independent of inflammation. Our results contribute not only to the understanding of the pharmacological effects of nicotine, but also to the identifying of new therapeutic targets against insulin resistance. PMID:23251458

  15. Nicotine facilitates long-term potentiation induction in oriens-lacunosum moleculare cells via Ca2+ entry through non-alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Jia, Yousheng; Yamazaki, Yoshihiko; Nakauchi, Sakura; Ito, Ken-Ichi; Sumikawa, Katumi

    2010-02-01

    Hippocampal inhibitory interneurons have a central role in the control of network activity, and excitatory synapses that they receive express Hebbian and anti-Hebbian long-term potentiation (LTP). Because many interneurons in the hippocampus express nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), we explored whether exposure to nicotine promotes LTP induction in these interneurons. We focussed on a subset of interneurons in the stratum oriens/alveus that were continuously activated in the presence of nicotine due to the expression of non-desensitizing non-alpha7 nAChRs. We found that, in addition to alpha2 subunit mRNAs, these interneurons were consistently positive for somatostatin and neuropeptide Y mRNAs, and showed morphological characteristics of oriens-lacunosum moleculare cells. Activation of non-alpha7 nAChRs increased intracellular Ca(2+) levels at least in part via Ca(2+) entry through their channels. Presynaptic tetanic stimulation induced N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor-independent LTP in voltage-clamped interneurons at -70 mV when in the presence, but not absence, of nicotine. Intracellular application of a Ca(2+) chelator blocked LTP induction, suggesting the requirement of Ca(2+) signal for LTP induction. The induction of LTP was still observed in the presence of ryanodine, which inhibits Ca(2+) -induced Ca(2+) release from ryanodine-sensitive intracellular stores, and the L-type Ca(2+) channel blocker nifedipine. These results suggest that Ca(2+) entry through non-alpha7 nAChR channels is critical for LTP induction. Thus, nicotine affects hippocampal network activity by promoting LTP induction in oriens-lacunosum moleculare cells via continuous activation of non-alpha7 nAChRs.

  16. Role of dopamine receptor and muscarinic acetylcholine receptor blockade in the antiapomorphine action of neuroleptics

    SciTech Connect

    Zharkovskii, A.M.; Langel, Yu.L.; Chereshka, K.S.; Zharkovskaya, T.A.

    1987-08-01

    The authors analyze the role of dopamine and muscarinic acetylcholine receptor blocking components in the antistereotypic action of neuroleptics with different chemical structure. To determine dopamine-blocking activity in vitro, binding of /sup 3/H-spiperone with membranes of the rat striatum was measured. To study the blocking action of the substances on muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, binding of /sup 3/H-quinuclidinyl benzylate with brain membranes was chosen.

  17. The non-competitive acetylcholinesterase inhibitor APS12-2 is a potent antagonist of skeletal muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Grandič, Marjana; Aráoz, Romulo; Molgó, Jordi; Turk, Tom; Sepčić, Kristina; Benoit, Evelyne; Frangež, Robert

    2012-12-01

    APS12-2, a non-competitive acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, is one of the synthetic analogs of polymeric alkylpyridinium salts (poly-APS) isolated from the marine sponge Reniera sarai. In the present work the effects of APS12-2 were studied on isolated mouse phrenic nerve–hemidiaphragm muscle preparations, using twitch tension measurements and electrophysiological recordings. APS12-2 in a concentration-dependent manner blocked nerve-evoked isometric muscle contraction (IC{sub 50} = 0.74 μM), without affecting directly-elicited twitch tension up to 2.72 μM. The compound (0.007–3.40 μM) decreased the amplitude of miniature endplate potentials until a complete block by concentrations higher than 0.68 μM, without affecting their frequency. Full size endplate potentials, recorded after blocking voltage-gated muscle sodium channels, were inhibited by APS12-2 in a concentration-dependent manner (IC{sub 50} = 0.36 μM) without significant change in the resting membrane potential of the muscle fibers up to 3.40 μM. The compound also blocked acetylcholine-evoked inward currents in Xenopus oocytes in which Torpedo (α1{sub 2}β1γδ) muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been incorporated (IC{sub 50} = 0.0005 μM), indicating a higher affinity of the compound for Torpedo (α1{sub 2}β1γδ) than for the mouse (α1{sub 2}β1γε) nAChR. Our data show for the first time that APS12-2 blocks neuromuscular transmission by a non-depolarizing mechanism through an action on postsynaptic nAChRs of the skeletal neuromuscular junction. -- Highlights: ► APS12-2 produces concentration-dependent inhibition of nerve-evoked muscle contraction in vitro. ► APS12-2 blocks MEPPs and EPPs at the neuromuscular junction. APS12-2 blocks ACh-activated current in Xenopus oocytes incorporated with Torpedo nAChRs.

  18. Activation and desensitization of nicotinic alpha7-type acetylcholine receptors by benzylidene anabaseines and nicotine.

    PubMed

    Papke, Roger L; Kem, William R; Soti, Ferenc; López-Hernández, Gretchen Y; Horenstein, Nicole A

    2009-05-01

    Nicotinic receptor activation is inextricably linked to desensitization. This duality affects our ability to develop useful therapeutics targeting nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR). Nicotine and some alpha7-selective experimental partial agonists produce a transient activation of alpha7 receptors followed by a period of prolonged residual inhibition or desensitization (RID). The object of the present study was to determine whether RID was primarily due to prolonged desensitization or due to channel block. To make this determination, we used agents that varied significantly in their production of RID and two alpha7-selective positive allosteric modulators (PAMs): 5-hydroxyindole (5HI), a type 1 PAM that does not prevent desensitization; and 1-(5-chloro-2,4-dimethoxy-phenyl)-3-(5-methyl-isoxanol-3-yl)-urea (PNU-120596), a type 2 PAM that reactivates desensitized receptors. The RID-producing compounds nicotine and 3-(2,4-dimethoxybenzylidene)anabaseine (diMeOBA) could obscure the potentiating effects of 5HI. However, through the use of nicotine, diMeOBA, and the RID-negative compound 3-(2,4-dihydroxybenzylidene)anabaseine (diOHBA) in combination with PNU-120596, we confirmed that diMeOBA produces short-lived channel block of alpha7 but that RID is because of the induction of a desensitized state that is stable in the absence of PNU-120596 and activated in the presence of PNU-120596. In contrast, diOHBA produced channel block but only readily reversible desensitization, whereas nicotine produced desensitization that could be converted into activation by PNU-120596 but no demonstrable channel block. Steady-state currents through receptors that would otherwise be desensitized could also be produced by the application of PNU-120596 in the presence of a physiologically relevant concentration of choline (60 microM), which may be significant for the therapeutic development of type 2 PAMs.

  19. DOPAMINE D2 AND ACETYLCHOLINE α7 NICOTINIC RECEPTORS HAVE SUBCELLULAR DISTRIBUTIONS FAVORING MEDIATION OF CONVERGENT SIGNALING IN THE MOUSE VENTRAL TEGMENTAL AREA

    PubMed Central

    GARZÓN, M.; DUFFY, A. M.; CHAN, J.; LYNCH, M.-K.; MACKIE, K.; PICKEL, V. M.

    2014-01-01

    Alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7nAChRs) mediate nicotine-induced burst-firing of dopamine neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), a limbic brain region critically involved in reward and in dopamine D2 receptor (D2R)-related cortical dysfunctions associated with psychosis. The known presence of α7nAChRs and Gi-coupled D2Rs in dopamine neurons of the VTA suggests that these receptors are targeted to at least some of the same neurons in this brain region. To test this hypothesis, we used electron microscopic immunolabeling of antisera against peptide sequences of α7nACh and D2 receptors in the mouse VTA. Dual D2R and α7nAChR labeling was seen in many of the same somata (co-localization over 97%) and dendrites (co-localization over 49%), where immunoreactivity for each of the receptors was localized to endomembranes as well as to non-synaptic or synaptic plasma membranes often near excitatory-type synapses. In comparison with somata and dendrites, many more small axons and axon terminals were separately labeled for each of the receptors. Thus, single-labeled axon terminals were predominant for both α7nAChR (57.9%) and D2R (89.0%). The majority of the immunolabeled axonal profiles contained D2R-immunoreactivity (81.6%) and formed either symmetric or asymmetric synapses consistent with involvement in the release of both inhibitory and excitatory transmitters. Of 160 D2R-labeled terminals, 81.2% were presynaptic to dendrites that expressed α7nAChR alone or together with the D2R. Numerous glial processes inclusive of those enveloping either excitatory- or inhibitory-type synapses also contained single labeling for D2R (n = 152) and α7nAChR (n =561). These results suggest that classic antipsychotic drugs, all of which block the D2R, may facilitate α7nAChR-mediated burst-firing by elimination of D2R-dependent inhibition in neurons expressing both receptors as well as by indirect pre-synaptic and glial mechanisms. PMID:23954803

  20. Functional expression of α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by muscle afferent neurons

    PubMed Central

    Baxter, James C.; Ramachandra, Renuka; Mayne, Dustin R.

    2014-01-01

    The exercise pressor reflex (EPR) is generated by group III and IV muscle afferents during exercise to increase cardiovascular function. Muscle contraction is triggered by ACh, which is metabolized into choline that could serve as a signal of exercise-induced activity. We demonstrate that ACh can induce current in muscle afferents neurons isolated from male Sprague-Dawley rats. The nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChRs) appear to be expressed by some group III-IV neurons since capsaicin (TRPV1) and/or ATP (P2X) induced current in 56% of ACh-responsive neurons. α7- And α4β2-nAChRs have been shown to be expressed in sensory neurons. An α7-nAChR antibody stained 83% of muscle afferent neurons. Functional expression was demonstrated by using the specific α7-nAChR blockers α-conotoxin ImI (IMI) and methyllycaconitine (MLA). MLA inhibited ACh responses in 100% of muscle afferent neurons, whereas IMI inhibited ACh responses in 54% of neurons. Dihydro-β-erythroidine, an α4β2-nAChR blocker, inhibited ACh responses in 50% of muscle afferent neurons, but recovery from block was not observed. Choline, an α7-nAChR agonist, elicited a response in 60% of ACh-responsive neurons. Finally, we demonstrated the expression of α7-nAChR by peripherin labeled (group IV) afferent fibers within gastrocnemius muscles. Some of these α7-nAChR-positive fibers were also positive for P2X3 receptors. Thus choline could serve as an activator of the EPR by opening α7-nAChR expressed by group IV (and possible group III) afferents. nAChRs could become pharmacological targets for suppressing the excessive EPR activation in patients with peripheral vascular disease. PMID:24966300

  1. Fetal muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptor activation in TE-671 cells and inhibition of fetal movement in a day 40 pregnant goat model by optical isomers of the piperidine alkaloid coniine.

    PubMed

    Green, Benedict T; Lee, Stephen T; Welch, Kevin D; Pfister, James A; Panter, Kip E

    2013-01-01

    Coniine is an optically active toxic piperidine alkaloid and nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) agonist found in poison hemlock (Conium maculatum L.). Coniine teratogenicity is hypothesized to be attributable to the binding, activation, and prolonged desensitization of fetal muscle-type nAChR, which results in the complete inhibition of fetal movement. However, pharmacological evidence of coniine actions at fetal muscle-type nAChR is lacking. The present study compared (-)-coniine, (+)-coniine, and nicotine for the ability to inhibit fetal movement in a day 40 pregnant goat model and in TE-671 cells that express fetal muscle-type nAChR. Furthermore, α-conotoxins (CTx) EI and GI were used to antagonize the actions of (+)- and (-)-coniine in TE-671 cells. (-)-Coniine was more effective at eliciting electrical changes in TE-671 cells and inhibiting fetal movement than was (+)-coniine, suggesting stereoselectivity by the receptor. The pyridine alkaloid nicotine did not inhibit fetal movement in a day 40 pregnant goat model, suggesting agonist specificity for the inhibition of fetal movement. Low concentrations of both CTxs potentiated the TE-671 cell response and higher concentrations of CTx EI, and GI antagonized the actions of both coniine enantiomers demonstrating concentration-dependent coagonism and selective antagonism. These results provide pharmacological evidence that the piperidine alkaloid coniine is acting at fetal muscle-type nAChR in a concentration-dependent manner.

  2. The role of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the primary reinforcing and reinforcement-enhancing effects of nicotine.

    PubMed

    Palmatier, Matthew I; Liu, Xiu; Caggiula, Anthony R; Donny, Eric C; Sved, Alan F

    2007-05-01

    The primary reinforcing effects of nicotine are mediated by the drugs action at central nervous system nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Although previous studies have demonstrated that nicotine potently enhances responding for non-pharmacological stimuli, the role of nAChRs in this reinforcement-enhancing effect is not known. The two reinforcement-related effects of nicotine can be dissociated in a paradigm that provides concurrent access to drug infusions and a non-pharmacological visual stimulus (VS). The present study characterized the role of nAChRs in the primary reinforcing effect of nicotine and the reinforcement-enhancing effect of nicotine. For rats with access to VS (VS-Only), nicotine (NIC-Only), both reinforcers contingent upon one response (NIC+VS) or both reinforcers contingent upon separate responses (2-Lever), unit dose-response relationships (0, 30, 60, or 90 microg/kg/infusion, free base) were determined over a 22-day acquisition period. Expression of the two reinforcement-related effects of nicotine was manipulated by pharmacological antagonism of nAChRs (1 mg/kg mecamylamine, subcutaneous, 5-min before the session) or by substituting saline for nicotine infusions (ie extinction) over a series of seven test sessions. Unit dose manipulations yielded an inverse dose-response relationship for active lever responding in the NIC+VS group. The dose-response relationships for rats with independent access to each reinforcer (2-Lever group) were relatively flat. For the 2-Lever group, acute mecamylamine challenge blocked the reinforcement-enhancing effects of nicotine, VS-lever responding decreased to basal levels on the first day of mecamylamine treatment or saline substitution (to the level of the VS-Only group). In contrast, nicotine-lever responding decreased gradually over the 7-day testing period (similar to saline extinction). The two reinforcement-related effects of nicotine are mediated by nAChRs but can be dissociated by acute and

  3. Two Novel α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Ligands: In Vitro Properties and Their Efficacy in Collagen-Induced Arthritis in Mice

    PubMed Central

    van Maanen, Marjolein A.; Papke, Roger L.; Koopman, Frieda A.; Koepke, Jessica; Bevaart, Lisette; Clark, Roger; Lamppu, Diana; Elbaum, Daniel; LaRosa, Gregory J.; Tak, Paul P.; Vervoordeldonk, Margriet J.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction The cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway can downregulate inflammation via the release of acetylcholine (ACh) by the vagus nerve. This neurotransmitter binds to the α7 subunit of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7nAChR), expressed on macrophages and other immune cells. We tested the pharmacological and functional profile of two novel compounds, PMP-311 and PMP-072 and investigated their role in modulating collagen-induced arthritis (CIA) in mice. Methods Both compounds were characterized with binding, electrophysiological, and pharmacokinetic studies. For in vivo efficacy studies in the CIA model the compounds were administered daily by oral gavage from day 20 till sacrifice at day 34. Disease progression was monitored by visual clinical scoring and measurement of paw swelling. Inflammation and joint destruction were examined by histology and radiology. Results Treatment with PMP-311 was effective in preventing disease onset, reducing clinical signs of arthritis, and reducing synovial inflammation and bone destruction. PMP-072 also showed a trend in arthritis reduction at all concentrations tested. The data showed that while both compounds bind to α7nAChR with high affinity, PMP-311 acts like a classical agonist of ion channel activity, and PMP-072 can actually act as an ion channel antagonist. Moreover, PMP-072 was clearly distinct from typical competitive antagonists, since it was able to act as a silent agonist. It synergizes with the allosteric modulator PNU-120596, and subsequently activates desensitized α7nAChR. However, PMP-072 was less efficacious than PMP-311 at both channel activation and desensitization, suggesting that both conducting and non-conducting states maybe of importance in driving an anti-inflammatory response. Finally, we found that the anti-arthritic effect can be observed despite limited penetration of the central nervous system. Conclusions These data provide direct evidence that the α7nAChR in immune cells does not

  4. Single nucleotide polymorphisms and genotypes of transient receptor potential ion channel and acetylcholine receptor genes from isolated B lymphocytes in myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome patients.

    PubMed

    Marshall-Gradisnik, Sonya; Johnston, Samantha; Chacko, Anu; Nguyen, Thao; Smith, Peter; Staines, Donald

    2016-12-01

    Objective The pathomechanism of chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) is unknown; however, a small subgroup of patients has shown muscarinic antibody positivity and reduced symptom presentation following anti-CD20 intervention. Given the important roles of calcium (Ca(2+)) and acetylcholine (ACh) signalling in B cell activation and potential antibody development, we aimed to identify relevant single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and genotypes in isolated B cells from CFS/ME patients. Methods A total of 11 CFS/ME patients (aged 31.82 ± 5.50 years) and 11 non-fatigued controls (aged 33.91 ± 5.06 years) were included. Flow cytometric protocols were used to determine B cell purity, followed by SNP and genotype analysis for 21 mammalian TRP ion channel genes and nine mammalian ACh receptor genes. SNP association and genotyping analysis were performed using ANOVA and PLINK analysis software. Results Seventy-eight SNPs were identified in nicotinic and muscarinic acetylcholine receptor genes in the CFS/ME group, of which 35 were in mAChM3. The remaining SNPs were identified in nAChR delta (n = 12), nAChR alpha 9 (n = 5), TRPV2 (n = 7), TRPM3 (n = 4), TRPM4 (n = 1) mAChRM3 2 (n = 2), and mAChRM5 (n = 3) genes. Nine genotypes were identified from SNPs in TRPM3 (n = 1), TRPC6 (n = 1), mAChRM3 (n = 2), nAChR alpha 4 (n = 1), and nAChR beta 1 (n = 4) genes, and were located in introns and 3' untranslated regions. Odds ratios for these specific genotypes ranged between 7.11 and 26.67 for CFS/ME compared with the non-fatigued control group. Conclusion This preliminary investigation identified a number of SNPs and genotypes in genes encoding TRP ion channels and AChRs from B cells in patients with CFS/ME. These may be involved in B cell functional changes, and suggest a role for Ca(2+) dysregulation in AChR and TRP ion channel signalling in the pathomechanism of CFS/ME.

  5. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α7 subunit is an essential negative regulator of bone mass.

    PubMed

    Mito, Kazuaki; Sato, Yuiko; Kobayashi, Tami; Miyamoto, Kana; Nitta, Eriko; Iwama, Atsushi; Matsumoto, Morio; Nakamura, Masaya; Sato, Kazuki; Miyamoto, Takeshi

    2017-03-28

    The nicotinic receptor α7nAchR reportedly regulates vagal nerve targets in brain and cardiac tissue. Here we show that nAchR7(-/-) mice exhibit increased bone mass due to decreased osteoclast formation, accompanied by elevated osteoprotegerin/RANKL ratios in serum. Vagotomy in wild-type mice also significantly increased the serum osteoprotegerin/RANKL ratio, and elevated bone mass seen in nAchR7(-/-) mice was reversed in α7nAchR/osteoprotegerin-doubly-deficient mice. α7nAchR loss significantly increased TNFα expression in Mac1-positive macrophages, and TNFα increased the osteoprotegerin/RANKL ratio in osteoblasts. Targeting TNFα in nAchR7(-/-) mice normalized both serum osteoprotegerin/RANKL ratios and bone mass. Administration of nicotine, an α7nAchR ligand, to wild-type mice increased serum RANKL levels. Thus, vagal nerve stimulation of macrophages via α7nAchR regulates bone mass by modulating osteoclast formation.

  6. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α7 subunit is an essential negative regulator of bone mass

    PubMed Central

    Mito, Kazuaki; Sato, Yuiko; Kobayashi, Tami; Miyamoto, Kana; Nitta, Eriko; Iwama, Atsushi; Matsumoto, Morio; Nakamura, Masaya; Sato, Kazuki; Miyamoto, Takeshi

    2017-01-01

    The nicotinic receptor α7nAchR reportedly regulates vagal nerve targets in brain and cardiac tissue. Here we show that nAchR7−/− mice exhibit increased bone mass due to decreased osteoclast formation, accompanied by elevated osteoprotegerin/RANKL ratios in serum. Vagotomy in wild-type mice also significantly increased the serum osteoprotegerin/RANKL ratio, and elevated bone mass seen in nAchR7−/− mice was reversed in α7nAchR/osteoprotegerin-doubly-deficient mice. α7nAchR loss significantly increased TNFα expression in Mac1-positive macrophages, and TNFα increased the osteoprotegerin/RANKL ratio in osteoblasts. Targeting TNFα in nAchR7−/− mice normalized both serum osteoprotegerin/RANKL ratios and bone mass. Administration of nicotine, an α7nAchR ligand, to wild-type mice increased serum RANKL levels. Thus, vagal nerve stimulation of macrophages via α7nAchR regulates bone mass by modulating osteoclast formation. PMID:28349965

  7. Similarities between the Binding Sites of SB-206553 at Serotonin Type 2 and Alpha7 Acetylcholine Nicotinic Receptors: Rationale for Its Polypharmacological Profile.

    PubMed

    Möller-Acuña, Patricia; Contreras-Riquelme, J Sebastián; Rojas-Fuentes, Cecilia; Nuñez-Vivanco, Gabriel; Alzate-Morales, Jans; Iturriaga-Vásquez, Patricio; Arias, Hugo R; Reyes-Parada, Miguel

    2015-01-01

    Evidence from systems biology indicates that promiscuous drugs, i.e. those that act simultaneously at various protein targets, are clinically better in terms of efficacy, than those that act in a more selective fashion. This has generated a new trend in drug development called polypharmacology. However, the rational design of promiscuous compounds is a difficult task, particularly when the drugs are aimed to act at receptors with diverse structure, function and endogenous ligand. In the present work, using docking and molecular dynamics methodologies, we established the most probable binding sites of SB-206553, a drug originally described as a competitive antagonist of serotonin type 2B/2C metabotropic receptors (5-HT2B/2CRs) and more recently as a positive allosteric modulator of the ionotropic α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR). To this end, we employed the crystal structures of the 5-HT2BR and acetylcholine binding protein as templates to build homology models of the 5-HT2CR and α7 nAChR, respectively. Then, using a statistical algorithm, the similarity between these binding sites was determined. Our analysis showed that the most plausible binding sites for SB-206553 at 5-HT2Rs and α7 nAChR are remarkably similar, both in size and chemical nature of the amino acid residues lining these pockets, thus providing a rationale to explain its affinity towards both receptor types. Finally, using a computational tool for multiple binding site alignment, we determined a consensus binding site, which should be useful for the rational design of novel compounds acting simultaneously at these two types of highly different protein targets.

  8. Similarities between the Binding Sites of SB-206553 at Serotonin Type 2 and Alpha7 Acetylcholine Nicotinic Receptors: Rationale for Its Polypharmacological Profile

    PubMed Central

    Möller-Acuña, Patricia; Contreras-Riquelme, J. Sebastián; Rojas-Fuentes, Cecilia; Nuñez-Vivanco, Gabriel; Alzate-Morales, Jans; Iturriaga-Vásquez, Patricio; Arias, Hugo R.; Reyes-Parada, Miguel

    2015-01-01

    Evidence from systems biology indicates that promiscuous drugs, i.e. those that act simultaneously at various protein targets, are clinically better in terms of efficacy, than those that act in a more selective fashion. This has generated a new trend in drug development called polypharmacology. However, the rational design of promiscuous compounds is a difficult task, particularly when the drugs are aimed to act at receptors with diverse structure, function and endogenous ligand. In the present work, using docking and molecular dynamics methodologies, we established the most probable binding sites of SB-206553, a drug originally described as a competitive antagonist of serotonin type 2B/2C metabotropic receptors (5-HT2B/2CRs) and more recently as a positive allosteric modulator of the ionotropic α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR). To this end, we employed the crystal structures of the 5-HT2BR and acetylcholine binding protein as templates to build homology models of the 5-HT2CR and α7 nAChR, respectively. Then, using a statistical algorithm, the similarity between these binding sites was determined. Our analysis showed that the most plausible binding sites for SB-206553 at 5-HT2Rs and α7 nAChR are remarkably similar, both in size and chemical nature of the amino acid residues lining these pockets, thus providing a rationale to explain its affinity towards both receptor types. Finally, using a computational tool for multiple binding site alignment, we determined a consensus binding site, which should be useful for the rational design of novel compounds acting simultaneously at these two types of highly different protein targets. PMID:26244344

  9. Antagonist pharmacology of desensitizing and non-desensitizing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in cockroach neurons.

    PubMed

    Salgado, Vincent L

    2016-09-01

    Two α-bungarotoxin-sensitive nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptor subtypes in neurons of the American cockroach have been identified as desensitizing (nAChD) and selectively inhibitable with 100nM imidacloprid, and non-desensitizing (nAChN) and selectively inhibitable with 100pM methyllycaconitine. In this paper, the single-electrode voltage-clamp technique was used to measure concentration-response relations for the action of ACh and five antagonists on pharmacologically separated nAChD and nAChN receptors of acutely dissociated neurons from thoracic ganglia of the American cockroach. A dual bath and U-tube perfusion system was used to achieve rapid application of ACh in the continued presence of antagonists, which was essential to accurately measure inhibition by rapidly-reversible antagonists. ACh activated both receptors with an EC50 of 7μM and the antagonist potencies were (nAChD/nAChN in nM): dihydro-β-erythroidine: 1.0/5.6, d-tubocurarine: 1000/34, condelphine: 0.39/0.65, phencyclidine: 74/980 and mecamylamine 47/1150. While each of these antagonists displayed some subtype selectivity, none are selective enough to be used as subtype-selective tools. These results bring to a total of 16 the number of nicotinic compounds that have been measured on nAChD and nAChN currents. Characterization of these receptors is important for understanding the role of nAChRs in the insect nervous system and the mechanism of action of insecticides.

  10. Central Insulin Action Activates Kupffer Cells by Suppressing Hepatic Vagal Activation via the Nicotinic Alpha 7 Acetylcholine Receptor.

    PubMed

    Kimura, Kumi; Tanida, Mamoru; Nagata, Naoto; Inaba, Yuka; Watanabe, Hitoshi; Nagashimada, Mayumi; Ota, Tsuguhito; Asahara, Shun-ichiro; Kido, Yoshiaki; Matsumoto, Michihiro; Toshinai, Koji; Nakazato, Masamitsu; Shibamoto, Toshishige; Kaneko, Shuichi; Kasuga, Masato; Inoue, Hiroshi

    2016-03-15

    Central insulin action activates hepatic IL-6/STAT3 signaling, which suppresses the gene expression of hepatic gluconeogenic enzymes. The vagus nerve plays an important role in this centrally mediated hepatic response; however, the precise mechanism underlying this brain-liver interaction is unclear. Here, we present our findings that the vagus nerve suppresses hepatic IL-6/STAT3 signaling via α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7-nAchR) on Kupffer cells, and that central insulin action activates hepatic IL-6/STAT3 signaling by suppressing vagal activity. Indeed, central insulin-mediated hepatic IL-6/STAT3 activation and gluconeogenic gene suppression were impeded in mice with hepatic vagotomy, pharmacological cholinergic blockade, or α7-nAchR deficiency. In high-fat diet-induced obese and insulin-resistant mice, control of the vagus nerve by central insulin action was disturbed, inducing a persistent increase of inflammatory cytokines. These findings suggest that dysregulation of the α7-nAchR-mediated control of Kupffer cells by central insulin action may affect the pathogenesis of chronic hepatic inflammation in obesity.

  11. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor activation modulates gamma-aminobutyric acid release from CA1 neurons of rat hippocampal slices.

    PubMed

    Alkondon, M; Pereira, E F; Barbosa, C T; Albuquerque, E X

    1997-12-01

    In the present study we investigated electrophysiologically the nicotinic responses of pyramidal neurons and interneurons visualized by infrared-assisted videomicroscopy and fluorescence in the CA1 field of hippocampal slices obtained from 8- to 24-day-old rats. Application of nicotinic agonists to CA1 neurons evoked at least four types of nicotinic responses. Of major interest was the ability of these agonists to induce the release of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) from interneurons. Slowly decaying ACh whole-cell currents and GABA-mediated postsynaptic currents could be recorded from pyramidal neurons and interneurons, whereas fast-decaying nicotinic currents and fast current transients were recorded only from interneurons. Nicotinic responses were sensitive to blockade by d-tubocurarine (10 microM), which indicated that they were mediated by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). The slowly decaying currents, the postsynaptic currents and the fast current transients were insensitive to blockade by the alpha-7 nAChR-specific antagonist methyllycaconitine (up to 1 microM) or alpha-bungarotoxin (100 nM). On the other hand, the slowly decaying nicotinic currents recorded from the interneurons were blocked by the alpha4beta2 nAChR-specific antagonist dihydro-beta-erythroidine, and the fast-desensitizing nicotinic currents were evoked by the alpha-7 nAChR-specific agonist choline. In experimental conditions similar to those used to record nicotinic responses from neurons in slice (i. e., in the absence of tetrodotoxin), we observed that nicotinic agonists can also induce the release of GABA from hippocampal neurons in culture. In summary, these results provide direct evidence for more than one subtype of functional nAChR in CA1 neurons and suggest that activation of nAChRs present in GABAergic interneurons can evoke inhibitory activity in CA1 pyramidal neurons, thereby modulating processing of information in the hippocampus.

  12. Prenatal cigarette smoke exposure effects on apoptotic and nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression in the infant mouse brainstem.

    PubMed

    Vivekanandarajah, Arunnjah; Chan, Yik Lung; Chen, Hui; Machaalani, Rita

    2016-03-01

    Infants exposed to cigarette smoked during pregnancy into infancy have increased respiratory and cardiac abnormalities. Nicotine, the major neurotoxic component of cigarette smoke, induces its actions by binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR), with one downstream effect being increased apoptosis. Using a pre- into post- natal cigarette smoke exposure mouse model (SE), we studied the immunohistochemical expression of nAChR subunits α2, α3, α4, α5, α7, α9, β1 and β2 and two markers of apoptosis, active caspase-3 and TUNEL, in seven nuclei of the medulla and facial nucleus of the pons in male mice. Pups of dams exposed to two cigarettes (nicotine ≤1.2mg, CO ≤15mg) twice daily for six weeks prior to mating, during gestation and lactation (n=5; SE), were compared to pups exposed to air under the same condition (n=5; SHAM) at P20. Results showed that the hypoglossal nucleus had increased α3, α4, α7, α9, Casp-3 and TUNEL, dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus had increased α3, α5, α7, β1 and Casp-3, nucleus of the solitary tract had increased α3 but decreased α4, α5, β1 and apoptosis, cuneate nucleus had increased α3, β2 and Casp- 3, but decreased α5, nucleus of the spinal trigeminal tract had increased α3, α7, β1, lateral reticular nucleus had decreased β1, inferior olivary nucleus had increased β1 but decreased apoptosis, and the facial had increased α2, α3 and α7. This is the first study to demonstrate that nAChR subunits are affected following pre- into post-natal SE and that they simultaneously coincided with changes in apoptotic expression.

  13. Spinal activation of alpha7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor attenuates posttraumatic stress disorder-related chronic pain via suppression of glial activation.

    PubMed

    Sun, Rao; Zhang, Wei; Bo, Jinhua; Zhang, Zuoxia; Lei, Yishan; Huo, Wenwen; Liu, Yue; Ma, Zhengliang; Gu, Xiaoping

    2017-03-06

    The high prevalence of chronic pain in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) individuals has been widely reported by clinical studies, which emphasized an urgent need to uncover the underlying mechanisms and identify potential therapeutic targets. Recent studies suggested that targeting activated glia and their pro-inflammatory products may provide a novel and effective therapy for the stress-related pain. In this study, we investigated whether activation of alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7 nAChR), a novel anti-inflammatory target, could attenuate PTSD-related chronic pain. The experiments were conducted in a rat model of single prolonged stress (SPS), an established model of PTSD-pain comorbidity. We found that SPS exposure produced persistent mechanical allodynia. Immunohistochemical and enzyme-linked immuno sorbent assay analysis showed that SPS also induced elevated activation of glia cells (including microglia and astrocytes) and accumulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines in spinal cord. In another experiment, we found that intrathecal injection of PHA-543613, a selective α7 nAchR agonist, attenuated the SPS-evoked allodynia in a dose dependent manner. However, this anti-hyperalgesic effect was blocked by pretreatment with methyllycaconitine (MLA), a selective α7 nAchR antagonist. Further analyses showed that PHA-543613 suppressed SPS-induced spinal glial activation and SPS-elevated spinal pro-inflammatory cytokines, and these were abolished by MLA. Taken together, the present study showed that spinal activation of α7 nAChR by PHA-543613 attenuated mechanical allodynia induced by PTSD-like stress, and the suppression of spinal glial activation may underlie this anti-hyperalgesic effect. Our study demonstrated the therapeutic potential of targeting α7 nAChR in the treatment of PTSD-related chronic pain.

  14. Alpha-conotoxin MII-sensitive nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the nucleus accumbens shell regulate progressive ratio responding maintained by nicotine.

    PubMed

    Brunzell, Darlene H; Boschen, Karen E; Hendrick, Elizabeth S; Beardsley, Patrick M; McIntosh, J Michael

    2010-02-01

    Beta2 subunit containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (beta2(*)nAChRs; asterisk ((*)) denotes assembly with other subunits) are critical for nicotine self-administration and nicotine-associated dopamine (DA) release that supports nicotine reinforcement. The alpha6 subunit assembles with beta2 on DA neurons where alpha6beta2(*)nAChRs regulate nicotine-stimulated DA release at neuron terminals. Using local infusion of alpha-conotoxin MII (alpha-CTX MII), an antagonist with selectivity for alpha6beta2(*)nAChRs, the purpose of these experiments was to determine if alpha6beta2(*)nAChRs in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) shell are required for motivation to self-administer nicotine. Long-Evans rats lever-pressed for 0.03 mg/kg, i.v., nicotine accompanied by light+tone cues (NIC) or for light+tone cues unaccompanied by nicotine (CUEonly). Following extensive training, animals were tested under a progressive ratio (PR) schedule that required an increasing number of lever presses for each nicotine infusion and/or cue delivery. Immediately before each PR session, rats received microinfusions of alpha-CTX MII (0, 1, 5, or 10 pmol per side) into the NAc shell or the overlying anterior cingulate cortex. alpha-CTX MII dose dependently decreased break points and number of infusions earned by NIC rats following infusion into the NAc shell but not the anterior cingulate cortex. Concentrations of alpha-CTX MII that were capable of attenuating nicotine self-administration did not disrupt locomotor activity. There was no effect of infusion on lever pressing in CUEonly animals and NAc infusion alpha-CTX MII did not affect locomotor activity in an open field. These data suggest that alpha6beta2(*)nAChRs in the NAc shell regulate motivational aspects of nicotine reinforcement but not nicotine-associated locomotor activation.

  15. A three amino acid deletion in the transmembrane domain of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α6 subunit confers high-level resistance to spinosad in Plutella xylostella

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jing; Wang, Xingliang; Lansdell, Stuart J.; Zhang, Jianheng; Millar, Neil S.; Wu, Yidong

    2016-01-01

    Spinosad is a macrocyclic lactone insecticide that acts primarily at the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) of target insects. Here we describe evidence that high levels of resistance to spinosad in the diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella) are associated with a three amino acid (3-aa) deletion in the fourth transmembrane domain (TM4) of the nAChR α6 subunit (Pxα6). Following laboratory selection with spinosad, the SZ-SpinR strain of P. xylostella exhibited 940-fold resistance to spinosad. In addition, the selected insect population had 1060-fold cross-resistance to spinetoram but, in contrast, no cross-resistance to abamectin was observed. Genetic analysis indicates that spinosad resistance in SZ-SpinR is inherited as a recessive and autosomal trait, and that the 3-aa deletion (IIA) in TM4 of Pxα6 is tightly linked to spinosad resistance. Because of well-established difficulties in functional expression of cloned insect nAChRs, the analogous resistance-associated deletion mutation was introduced into a prototype nAChR (the cloned human α7 subunit). Two-electrode voltage-clamp recording with wild-type and mutated nAChRs expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes indicated that the mutation causes a complete loss of agonist activation. In addition, radioligand binding studies indicated that the 3-aa deletion resulted in significantly lower-affinity binding of the extracellular neurotransmitter-binding site. These findings are consistent with the 3-amino acid (IIA) deletion within the transmembrane domain of Pxα6 being responsible for target-site resistance to spinosad in the SZ-SpinR strain of P. xylostella. PMID:26855198

  16. Activation of α-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor reduces ischemic stroke injury through reduction of pro-inflammatory macrophages and oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Han, Zhenying; Shen, Fanxia; He, Yue; Degos, Vincent; Camus, Marine; Maze, Mervyn; Young, William L; Su, Hua

    2014-01-01

    Activation of α-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α-7 nAchR) has a neuro-protective effect on ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke. However, the underlying mechanism is not completely understood. We hypothesized that α-7 nAchR agonist protects brain injury after ischemic stroke through reduction of pro-inflammatory macrophages (M1) and oxidative stress. C57BL/6 mice were treated with PHA568487 (PHA, α-7 nAchR agonist), methyllycaconitine (MLA, nAchR antagonist), or saline immediately and 24 hours after permanent occlusion of the distal middle cerebral artery (pMCAO). Behavior test, lesion volume, CD68(+), M1 (CD11b(+)/Iba1(+)) and M2 (CD206/Iba1+) microglia/macrophages, and phosphorylated p65 component of NF-kB in microglia/macrophages were quantified using histological stained sections. The expression of M1 and M2 marker genes, anti-oxidant genes and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH) oxidase were quantified using real-time RT-PCR. Compared to the saline-treated mice, PHA mice had fewer behavior deficits 3 and 7 days after pMCAO, and smaller lesion volume, fewer CD68(+) and M1 macrophages, and more M2 macrophages 3 and 14 days after pMCAO, whereas MLA's effects were mostly the opposite in several analyses. PHA increased anti-oxidant genes and NADPH oxidase expression associated with decreased phosphorylation of NF-kB p65 in microglia/macrophages. Thus, reduction of inflammatory response and oxidative stress play roles in α-7 nAchR neuro-protective effect.

  17. Synthesis and Behavioral Studies of Chiral Cyclopropanes as Selective α4β2-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Partial Agonists Exhibiting an Antidepressant Profile. Part III.

    PubMed

    Onajole, Oluseye K; Vallerini, Gian Paolo; Eaton, J Brek; Lukas, Ronald J; Brunner, Dani; Caldarone, Barbara J; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2016-06-15

    We report the synthesis and biological characterization of novel derivatives of 3-[(1-methyl-2(S)-pyrrolidinyl)methoxy]-5-cyclopropylpyridine (4a-f and 5) as potent and highly selective α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) full or partial agonists. A systematic structure-activity study was carried out on the previously described compound 3b, particularly concerning its (2-methoxyethyl)cyclopropyl side-chain, in an effort to improve its metabolic stability while maintaining receptor selectivity. Compound 4d exhibited very similar subnanomolar binding affinity for α4β2- and α4β2*-nAChRs compared to 3b, and it showed excellent potency in activating high-sensitivity (HS) α4β2-nAChRs with an EC50 value of 8.2 nM. Testing of 4d in the SmartCube assay revealed that the compound has a combined antidepressant plus antipsychotic signature. In the forced swim test at a dose of 30 mg/kg given intraperitoneally, 4d was found to be as efficacious as sertraline, thus providing evidence of the potential use of the compound as an antidepressant. Additional promise for use of 4d in humans comes from pharmacokinetic studies in mice indicating brain penetration, and additional assays show compound stability in the presence of human microsomes and hepatocytes. Thus, 4d has a very favorable preclinical drug profile.

  18. Attenuation of Compulsive-Like Behavior Through Positive Allosteric Modulation of α4β2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in Non-Induced Compulsive-Like Mice

    PubMed Central

    Mitra, Swarup; Mucha, Mckenzie; Khatri, Shailesh N.; Glenon, Richard; Schulte, Marvin K.; Bult-Ito, Abel

    2017-01-01

    Nicotinic α4β2 receptors are the most abundant subtypes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed in brain regions implicated in obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). These receptors are known to modify normal and addictive behaviors by modulating neuronal excitability. Desformylflustrabromine (dFBr) is a novel, positive allosteric modulator (PAM) of high acetylcholine sensitivity (HS) and low acetylcholine sensitivity (LS) α4β2 nAChRs. The present study tested the hypothesis that positive allosteric modulation of α4β2 receptors by dFBr will attenuate compulsive-like behavior in a non-induced compulsive-like mouse model. Male mice (Mus musculus) selected for compulsive-like nesting behavior (NB; 48 animals; 12 per group) received acute (once) and chronic (every day for 32 days) subcutaneous injection of dFBr at 2, 4 and 6 mg/kg doses. Saline was used as a control (0 mg/kg). Compulsive-like NB was assessed after 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 24 h, while compulsive-like marble burying (MB) and anxiety-like open field (OF) behaviors were performed 2 h after dFBr administration. In the acute administration protocol, dFBr dose dependently attenuated NB and MB. Rapid effects (1–2 h after drug administration) of dFBr on MB and NB were observed for the chronic administration which was in congruence with the acute study. Chronic administration also revealed sustained suppression of NB by dFBr following 5 weeks of treatment. In both the acute and chronic regimen dFBr did not modulate OF behaviors. This research demonstrates the novel role of positive allosteric modulation of α4β2 nicotinic receptors by dFBr as a translational potential for OCD. PMID:28105008

  19. A model of the human M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jöhren, Kirstin; Höltje, Hans-Dieter

    2002-11-01

    The M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor belongs to the family of rhodopsin like G-Protein Coupled Receptors. This subtype of muscarinic receptors is of special interest because it bears, aside from an orthosteric binding site, also an allosteric binding site. Based on the X-ray structure of bovine rhodopsin a complete homology model of the human M2 receptor was developed. For the orthosteric binding site point mutations and binding studies with different agonists and antagonists are available. This knowledge was utilized for an initial verification of the M2 model. Allosteric modulation of activity is mediated by structurally different ligands such as gallamine, caracurine V salts or W84 (a hexamethonium-derivative). Caracurine V derivatives with different affinities to M2 were docked using GRID-fields. Subsequent molecular dynamics simulations yielded different binding energies based on diverse electrostatic and lipophilic interactions. The calculated affinities are in good agreement to experimentally determined affinities.

  20. Ligand Binding at the α4-α4 Agonist-Binding Site of the α4β2 nAChR Triggers Receptor Activation through a Pre-Activated Conformational State

    PubMed Central

    Indurthi, Dinesh C.; Lewis, Trevor M.; Ahring, Philip K.; Balle, Thomas; Chebib, Mary; Absalom, Nathan L.

    2016-01-01

    The α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) is the most abundant subtype in the brain and exists in two functional stoichiometries: (α4)3(β2)2 and (α4)2(β2)3. A distinct feature of the (α4)3(β2)2 receptor is the biphasic activation response to the endogenous agonist acetylcholine, where it is activated with high potency and low efficacy when two α4-β2 binding sites are occupied and with low potency/high efficacy when a third α4-α4 binding site is occupied. Further, exogenous ligands can bind to the third α4-α4 binding site and potentiate the activation of the receptor by ACh that is bound at the two α4-β2 sites. We propose that perturbations of the recently described pre-activation step when a third binding site is occupied are a key driver of these distinct activation properties. To investigate this, we used a combination of simple linear kinetic models and voltage clamp electrophysiology to determine whether transitions into the pre-activated state were increased when three binding sites were occupied. We separated the binding at the two different sites with ligands selective for the α4-β2 site (Sazetidine-A and TC-2559) and the α4-α4 site (NS9283) and identified that when a third binding site was occupied, changes in the concentration-response curves were best explained by an increase in transitions into a pre-activated state. We propose that perturbations of transitions into a pre-activated state are essential to explain the activation properties of the (α4)3(β2)2 receptor by acetylcholine and other ligands. Considering the widespread clinical use of benzodiazepines, this discovery of a conserved mechanism that benzodiazepines and ACh potentiate receptor activation via a third binding site can be exploited to develop therapeutics with similar properties at other cys-loop receptors. PMID:27552221

  1. Biochemical and immunological studies of the Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Gainer, M.W.

    1985-01-01

    Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors were solubilized from bovine brain membranes with 3(3-cholamidopropyl)dimethylammonio)propanesulfonate (CHAPS). A combination of 10 mM CHAPS and 1 M NaCl solubilized 15-40% of the specific receptor binding sites from these membranes. The solubilized receptors displayed high affinity binding of the muscarinic antagonist, (/sup 3/H)quinuclidinyl benzilate with a K/sub D/ = 300 pM. In addition, the solubilized and retained guanyl nucleotide regulation of agonist binding characteristic of membrane bound receptors. Gel filtration experiments showed that solubilized receptors from cortex and cerebellum had different elution profiles. Analysis by sucrose density gradient centrifugation showed that receptors in the lower molecular weight peak sedimented with a coefficient of 5S. Receptors in the larger molecular weight peak sedimented to the bottom of the gradient. Attempts to purify receptors by chromatography on propylbenzilycholine Sepharose were unsuccessful. The technique used to attach the ligand to the solid support, however, was used to synthesize a PrBCM-BSA conjugate and the conjugate used as an antigen in the production of anti-ligand antibodies. Two anti-PrBCM monoclonal antibodies were isolated that recognize muscarinic but not nicotinic cholinergic ligands. The abilities of the antibodies to recognize other muscarinic ligands indicated the antibodies recognized a portion of PrBCM involved in binding to the receptor. Construction of an antibody affinity resin resulted in the purification of this fragment a minimum of 170 fold.

  2. Molecular alteration of a muscarinic acetylcholine receptor system during synaptogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Large, T.H.; Cho, N.J.; De Mello, F.G.; Klein, W.L.

    1985-07-25

    Biochemical properties of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor system of the avian retina were found to change during the period when synapses form in ovo. Comparison of ligand binding to membranes obtained before and after synaptogenesis showed a significant increase in the affinity, but not proportion, of the high affinity agonist-binding state. There was no change in receptor sensitivity to antagonists during this period. Pirenzepine binding, which can discriminate muscarinic receptor subtypes, showed the presence of a single population of low affinity sites (M2) before and after synaptogenesis. The change in agonist binding was not due to the late development of receptor function. However, detergent-solubilization of membranes eliminated differences in agonist binding between receptors from embryos and hatched chicks, suggesting a developmental change in interactions of the receptor with functionally related membrane components. A possible basis for altered interactions was obtained from isoelectric point data showing that the muscarinic receptor population underwent a transition from a predominantly low pI form (4.25) in 13 day embryos to a predominantly high pI form (4.50) in newly hatched chicks. The possibility that biochemical changes in the muscarinic receptor play a role in differentiation of the system by controlling receptor position on the surface of nerve cells is discussed.

  3. alpha4beta2 nicotinic receptors with high and low acetylcholine sensitivity: pharmacology, stoichiometry, and sensitivity to long-term exposure to nicotine.

    PubMed

    Moroni, Mirko; Zwart, Ruud; Sher, Emanuele; Cassels, Bruce K; Bermudez, Isabel

    2006-08-01

    alpha4 and beta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits expressed heterologously assemble into receptors with high (HS) and low (LS) sensitivity to acetylcholine (ACh); their relative proportions depend on the alpha4to beta2 ratio. In this study, injection of oocytes with 1:10 alpha4/beta2 subunit cDNA ratios favored expression of HS alpha4beta2 nAChRs, as evidenced by monophasic ACh concentration-response curves, whereas injections with 10:1 cDNA ratios favored expression of LS alpha4beta2 receptors. The stoichiometry was inferred from the shifts in the ACh EC(50) values caused by Leu to Thr mutations at position 9' of the second transmembrane domain of alpha4 and beta2. The 1:10 injection ratio produced the (alpha4)(2)(beta2)(3) stoichiometry, whereas 10:1 injections produced the (alpha4)(3)(beta2)(2) stoichiometry. The agonists epibatidine, 3-[2(S)-azetidinylmethoxy]pyridine (A-85380), 5-ethoxy-metanicotine (TC-2559), cytisine, and 3-Br-cytisine and the antagonists dihydro-beta-erythroidine and d-tubocurarine were more potent at HS receptors. TC-2559 was more efficacious than ACh at HS receptors but was a partial agonist at LS receptors. Epibatidine was more efficacious than ACh at LS receptors and a partial agonist at HS receptors. Cytisine and 5-halogenated cytisines had moderate efficacy at LS receptors but had almost no efficacy at HS receptors. By exploiting the differential effects of ACh, TC-2559 and 5-I-cytisine we evaluated the effects of long-term exposure to nicotine on HS and LS receptors expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes after cDNA injections or microtransplantation of alpha4beta2 receptors assembled in human embryonic kidney 293 cells. We conclude that nicotine up-regulates HS alpha4beta2 receptors, probably by influencing the assembly of receptors rather than by altering the functional state of LS alpha4beta2 nAChRs.

  4. Structure and dynamics of the M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Kruse, Andrew C.; Hu, Jianxin; Pan, Albert C.; Arlow, Daniel H.; Rosenbaum, Daniel M.; Rosemond, Erica; Green, Hillary F.; Liu, Tong; Chae, Pil Seok; Dror, Ron O.; Shaw, David E.; Weis, William I.; Wess, Jürgen; Kobilka, Brian K.

    2012-03-01

    Acetylcholine, the first neurotransmitter to be identified, exerts many of its physiological actions via activation of a family of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) known as muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs). Although the five mAChR subtypes (M1-M5) share a high degree of sequence homology, they show pronounced differences in G-protein coupling preference and the physiological responses they mediate. Unfortunately, despite decades of effort, no therapeutic agents endowed with clear mAChR subtype selectivity have been developed to exploit these differences. We describe here the structure of the G{sub q/11}-coupled M3 mAChR ('M3 receptor', from rat) bound to the bronchodilator drug tiotropium and identify the binding mode for this clinically important drug. This structure, together with that of the G{sub i/o}-coupled M2 receptor, offers possibilities for the design of mAChR subtype-selective ligands. Importantly, the M3 receptor structure allows a structural comparison between two members of a mammalian GPCR subfamily displaying different G-protein coupling selectivities. Furthermore, molecular dynamics simulations suggest that tiotropium binds transiently to an allosteric site en route to the binding pocket of both receptors. These simulations offer a structural view of an allosteric binding mode for an orthosteric GPCR ligand and provide additional opportunities for the design of ligands with different affinities or binding kinetics for different mAChR subtypes. Our findings not only offer insights into the structure and function of one of the most important GPCR families, but may also facilitate the design of improved therapeutics targeting these critical receptors.

  5. Crystal structure of a human neuronal nAChR extracellular domain in pentameric assembly: Ligand-bound α2 homopentamer

    PubMed Central

    Kouvatsos, Nikolaos; Giastas, Petros; Chroni-Tzartou, Dafni; Poulopoulou, Cornelia; Tzartos, Socrates J.

    2016-01-01

    In this study we report the X-ray crystal structure of the extracellular domain (ECD) of the human neuronal α2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit in complex with the agonist epibatidine at 3.2 Å. Interestingly, α2 was crystallized as a pentamer, revealing the intersubunit interactions in a wild type neuronal nAChR ECD and the full ligand binding pocket conferred by two adjacent α subunits. The pentameric assembly presents the conserved structural scaffold observed in homologous proteins, as well as distinctive features, providing unique structural information of the binding site between principal and complementary faces. Structure-guided mutagenesis and electrophysiological data confirmed the presence of the α2(+)/α2(−) binding site on the heteromeric low sensitivity α2β2 nAChR and validated the functional importance of specific residues in α2 and β2 nAChR subunits. Given the pathological importance of the α2 nAChR subunit and the high sequence identity with α4 (78%) and other neuronal nAChR subunits, our findings offer valuable information for modeling several nAChRs and ultimately for structure-based design of subtype specific drugs against the nAChR associated diseases. PMID:27493220

  6. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors control acetylcholine and noradrenaline release in the rodent habenulo-interpeduncular complex

    PubMed Central

    Beiranvand, F; Zlabinger, C; Orr-Urtreger, A; Ristl, R; Huck, S; Scholze, P

    2014-01-01

    Background and purpose Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nACh receptors) play a central role in the habenulo-interpeduncular system. We studied nicotine-induced release of NA and ACh in the habenula and interpeduncular nucleus (IPN). Experimental approach The habenula and IPN were loaded with [3H]-choline or [3H]-NA and placed in superfusion chambers. [3H]-ACh release was also stimulated using nicotinic agonists, electrical pulses and elevated [KCl]o in hippocampal and cortical slices from rats, wild-type mice and mice lacking α5, α7, β2, or β4 nACh receptor subunits. Finally, we analysed nACh receptor subtypes in the IPN using immunoprecipitation. Key results Nicotine induced release of [3H]-ACh in the IPN of rats and mice. This release was calcium-dependent but not blocked by tetrodotoxin (TTX); moreover, [3H]-ACh release was abolished in β4-knockout mice but was unaffected in β2- and α5-knockout mice. In contrast, nicotine-induced release of [3H]-NA in the IPN and habenula was blocked by TTX and reduced in both β2-knockout and β4-knockout mice, and dose–response curves were right-shifted in α5-knockout mice. Although electrical stimuli triggered the release of both transmitters, [3H]-ACh release required more pulses delivered at a higher frequency. Conclusions and implications Our results confirm previous findings that β4-containing nACh receptors are critical for [3H]-ACh release in the mouse IPN. Experiments using α5-knockout mice also revealed that unlike in the hippocampus, nicotine-induced [3H]-NA release in the habenulo-interpeduncular system is altered in this knockout model. As α5-containing nACh receptors play a key role in nicotine intake, our results add NA to the list of transmitters involved in this mechanism. PMID:25041479

  7. The subunit gene Ldα1 of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors plays important roles in the toxicity of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam against Leptinotarsa decemlineata.

    PubMed

    Qu, Yang; Chen, Jinhua; Li, Chenge; Wang, Qiang; Guo, Wenchao; Han, Zhaojun; Jiang, Weihua

    2016-02-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are pentameric ACh-gated ion channels. It is believed that nAChRs composed of different subunits may vary in their function and toxicological characteristics. Neonicotinoids are activators of nAChRs and important insecticides that are extensively used for crop protection and resistance has been developed by some pests. They are also major insecticides for the control of Leptinotarsa decemlineata, which is a destructive defoliator pest that invaded the Xinjiang region of China in the 1990s. However, little is known about the constitution or subunits of the target in this pest. In this study, the full-length cDNAs encoding four new nAChR subunits (named Ldα3, Ldα6, Ldα10, and Ldβ1) were cloned from L. decemlineata. These genes encode 822-, 753-, 672-, and 759-amino acid proteins, respectively, which share typical features of insect nAChRs subunits and closely resemble the corresponding subunits of the nAChRs from Tribolium castaneum. Temporal and spatial expression analyses showed that these genes, as well as the previously identified Ldα1, Ldα2, and Ldα8 genes, are widely expressed in all developmental stages, including eggs, larvae of various instars, pupae, and adults. All genes monitored were expressed at higher levels in the head than in the thorax and abdomen, except for Ldα10. Dietary ingestion of double-stranded RNA bacterially expressed for Ldα1 (dsLdα1) significantly reduced the mRNA level of Ldα1 in treated larvae and adults by 48.0% and 78.6%, respectively. Among the non-target genes, Ldα3, Ldα9, and Ldβ1 were significantly up-regulated in larvae. A toxicity bioassay showed that dsLdα1 treatment greatly decreased the sensitivity to imidacloprid and thiamethoxam in adults. The larval susceptibility to thiamethoxam but not to imidacloprid was also reduced because of the lower down-regulation of Ldα1. Thus, our results suggest that Ldα1 encodes a subunit of a functional nAChR that mediates the

  8. Bupropion Binds to Two Sites in the Torpedo Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Transmembrane Domain: A Photoaffinity Labeling Study with the Bupropion Analog [125I]-SADU-3-72

    PubMed Central

    Pandhare, Akash; Hamouda, Ayman K.; Staggs, Brandon; Aggarwal, Shaili; Duddempudi, Phaneendra K.; Lever, John R.; Lapinsky, David J.; Jansen, Michaela; Cohen, Jonathan B.; Blanton, Michael P.

    2012-01-01

    Bupropion, a clinically-used antidepressant and smoking-cessation drug, acts as a noncompetitive antagonist of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). To identify its binding site(s) in nAChRs, we developed a photoreactive bupropion analog, (±)-2-(N-tert-butylamino)-3′-[125I]-iodo-4′-azidopropiophenone (SADU-3-72). Based upon inhibition of [125I]SADU-3-72 binding, SADU-3-72 binds with high affinity (IC50 = 0.8 μM) to the Torpedo nAChR in the resting (closed channel) state and in the agonist-induced desensitized state, and bupropion binds to that site with three-fold higher affinity in the desensitized (IC50 = 1.2 μM) than in the resting state. Photolabeling of Torpedo nAChRs with [125I]SADU-3-72 followed by limited in-gel digestion of nAChR subunits with endoproteinase Glu-C established the presence of [125I]SADU-3-72 photoincorporation within nAChR subunit fragments containing M1-M2-M3 helices (αV8-20K, βV8-22/23K and γV8-24K) or M1-M2 helices (δV8-14). Photolabeling within βV8-22/23K, γV8-24K and δV8-14 was reduced in the desensitized state and inhibited by ion channel blockers selective for the resting (tetracaine) or desensitized (thienycyclohexylpiperidine (TCP)) state, and this pharmacologically specific photolabeling was localized to the M2-9 leucine ring (δLeu265, βLeu257) within the ion channel. In contrast, photolabeling within the αV8-20K was enhanced in the desensitized state and not inhibited by TCP, but was inhibited by bupropion. This agonist-enhanced photolabeling was localized to αTyr213 in αM1. These results establish the presence of two distinct bupropion binding sites within the Torpedo nAChR transmembrane domain: a high affinity site at the middle (M2-9) of the ion channel and a second site near the extracellular end of αM1 within a previously described halothane (general anesthetic) binding pocket. PMID:22394379

  9. Acetylcholine receptors and cholinergic ligands: biochemical and genetic aspects in Torpedo californica and Drosophila melanogaster

    SciTech Connect

    Rosenthal, L.S.

    1987-01-01

    This study evaluates the biochemical and genetic aspects of the acetylcholine receptor proteins and cholinergic ligands in Drosophila melanogaster and Torpedo californica. Included are (1) a comparative study of nicotinic ligand-induced cation release from acetylcholine receptors isolated from Torpedo californica and from Drosophila melanogaster, (2) solution studies of the cholinergic ligands, nikethamide and ethamivan, aimed at measuring internal molecular rotational barriers in solvents of different polarity; and (3) the isolation and characterization of the gene(s) for the acetylcholine receptor in Drosophila melasogaster. Acetylcholine receptor proteins isolated from Drosphila melanogaster heads were found to behave kinetically similar (with regards to cholinergic ligand-induced /sup 155/Eu:/sup 3 +/ displacement from prelabeled proteins) to receptor proteins isolated from Torpedo californica electric tissue, providing additional biochemical evidence for the existence of a Drosophila acetylcholine receptor.

  10. Single acetylcholine receptor channel currents recorded at high hydrostatic pressures.

    PubMed Central

    Heinemann, S H; Stühmer, W; Conti, F

    1987-01-01

    A technique for performing patch-clamp experiments under high hydrostatic (oil) pressure is described. The method allows the transfer of whole cell or membrane patches in a recording configuration into a pressure vessel, where pressure can be increased up to 60 MPa (approximately equal to 600 bar). We have studied in this way the pressure dependence of single acetylcholine receptor channels in excised "outside-out" membrane patches from cultured rat muscle cells. In the range of 0.1 to 60 MPa the open channel conductance in 140 mM NaCl solutions did not vary by more than 2%, which implies that the translocation of sodium ions through the channel pore does not involve steps with significant activation volumes. At high acetylcholine concentrations (20 microM) bursts of single-channel activity allowed measurements of the mean open and mean closed times of the channel. Pressurization to 40 MPa increased both mean open and mean closed times giving apparent activation volumes of about 59 and 139 A3, respectively. This implies a net volume increase of 80 A3, associated with the transition from the agonist-free state to the open state of the channel, which may be partially associated with the agonist-binding step. All the observed pressure effects were reversible. The activation volumes for the gating of acetylcholine receptor channels are comparable to those of sodium and potassium channels in the squid giant axon, suggesting that there is some basic common mechanism in the operation of ion-channel proteins. Images PMID:2437577

  11. A model for the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor ion channel: structure of the transmembrane M2 segments as a pentameric assembly in a lipid bilayer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saiz, Leonor; Klein, Michael L.

    2003-03-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) is the neurotransmitter gated ion channel responsible for the fast propagation of electrical signals between cells at the nerve-muscle synapse and neurons. The current model for the pore region of the nAChR consists of a bundle of five M2 alpha helices, which is supported by recent solution and solid-state NMR spectroscopy experiments on micelle samples and oriented (DMPC) bilayers. In order to investigate the structure and properties of pore forming region of a simple model for the nAChR, we have performed a molecular dynamics simulation study of the homo-pentameric bundle of M2 peptides in a DMPC lipid bilayer at similar conditions to those of the NMR experiments. During the nanosecond time scale investigated, the peptide bundle adopts a left-handed supercoil structure and the calculated average tilt of the helices agrees well with the recent NMR data. The water filled bundle displays a funnel-like structure. We focuss on those aspects of the structure and dynamics relevant to the function of the channel.

  12. Synthesis of 2-(substituted phenyl)-3,5,5-trimethylmorpholine analogues and their effects on monoamine uptake, nicotinic acetylcholine receptor function, and behavioral effects of nicotine.

    PubMed

    Carroll, F Ivy; Muresan, Ana Z; Blough, Bruce E; Navarro, Hernán A; Mascarella, S Wayne; Eaton, J Brek; Huang, Xiaodong; Damaj, M Imad; Lukas, Ronald J

    2011-03-10

    Toward development of smoking cessation aids superior to bupropion (2), we describe synthesis of 2-(substituted phenyl)-3,5,5-trimethylmorpholine analogues 5a-5h and their effects on inhibition of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin uptake, nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) function, acute actions of nicotine, and nicotine-conditioned place preference (CPP). Several analogues encompassing aryl substitutions, N-alkylation, and alkyl extensions of the morpholine ring 3-methyl group provided analogues more potent in vitro than (S,S)-hydroxybupropion (4a) as inhibitors of dopamine or norepinephrine uptake and antagonists of nAChR function. All of the new (S,S)-5 analogues had better potency than (S,S)-4a as blockers of acute nicotine analgesia in the tail-flick test. Two analogues with highest potency at α3β4*-nAChR and among the most potent transporter inhibitors have better potency than (S,S)-4a in blocking nicotine-CPP. Collectively, these findings illuminate mechanisms of action of 2 analogues and identify deshydroxybupropion analogues 5a-5h as possibly superior candidates as aids to smoking cessation.

  13. Discovery of isoxazole analogues of sazetidine-A as selective α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor partial agonists for the treatment of depression.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jianhua; Yu, Li-Fang; Eaton, J Brek; Caldarone, Barbara; Cavino, Katie; Ruiz, Christina; Terry, Matthew; Fedolak, Allison; Wang, Daguang; Ghavami, Afshin; Lowe, David A; Brunner, Dani; Lukas, Ronald J; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2011-10-27

    Depression, a common neurological condition, is one of the leading causes of disability and suicide worldwide. Standard treatment, targeting monoamine transporters selective for the neurotransmitters serotonin and noradrenaline, is not able to help many patients that are poor responders. This study advances the development of sazetidine-A analogues that interact with α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) as partial agonists and that possess favorable antidepressant profiles. The resulting compounds that are highly selective for the α4β2 subtype of nAChR over α3β4-nAChRs are partial agonists at the α4β2 subtype and have excellent antidepressant behavioral profiles as measured by the mouse forced swim test. Preliminary absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion, and toxicity (ADMET) studies for one promising ligand revealed an excellent plasma protein binding (PPB) profile, low CYP450-related metabolism, and low cardiovascular toxicity, suggesting it is a promising lead as well as a drug candidate to be advanced through the drug discovery pipeline.

  14. 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.

  15. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Containing the α7-Like Subunit Mediate Contractions of Muscles Responsible for Space Positioning of the Snail, Helix pomatia L. Tentacle

    PubMed Central

    Kiss, Tibor; Krajcs, Nóra; Pirger, Zsolt; Hernádi, László

    2014-01-01

    Three recently discovered tentacle muscles are crucial to perform patterned movements of upper tentacles of the terrestrial snail, Helix pomatia. The muscles receive central and peripheral excitatory cholinergic innervation lacking inhibitory innervation. Here, we investigate the pharmacology of acetylcholine (ACh) responses in muscles to determine the properties of the ACh receptor (AChR), the functional availability of which was assessed using isotonic contraction measurement. Using broad spectrum of nicotinic and muscarinic ligands, we provide the evidence that contractions in the muscles are attributable to the activation of nAChRs that contain the α7-like subunit. Contractions could be evoked by nicotine, carbachol, succinylchloride, TMA, the selective α7-nAChR agonist choline chloride, 3-Bromocytisine and PNU-282987, and blocked by nAChR selective antagonists such as mytolon, hexamethonium, succinylchloride, d-tubocurarine, hemicholinium, DMDA (decamethonium), methyllycaconitine, α-Bungarotoxin (αBgTx) and α-Conotoxin IMI. The specific muscarinic agonist oxotremorine and arecoline failed to elicit contractions. Based on these pharmacological properties we conclude that the Na+ and Ca2+ permeable AChRs of the flexor muscle are nicotinic receptors that contain the α7-like subunit. Immunodetection experiments confirmed the presence of α7- or α7-like AChRs in muscle cells, and α4-AChRs in nerves innervating the muscle. These results support the conclusion that the slowly desensitizing αBgTx-sensitive responses obtained from flexor muscles are produced by activation of α7- like AChRs. This is the first demonstration of postsynaptic expression and an obligatory role for a functional α7-like nAChR in the molluscan periphery. PMID:25303328

  16. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing the α7-like subunit mediate contractions of muscles responsible for space positioning of the snail, Helix pomatia L. tentacle.

    PubMed

    Kiss, Tibor; Krajcs, Nóra; Pirger, Zsolt; Hernádi, László

    2014-01-01

    Three recently discovered tentacle muscles are crucial to perform patterned movements of upper tentacles of the terrestrial snail, Helix pomatia. The muscles receive central and peripheral excitatory cholinergic innervation lacking inhibitory innervation. Here, we investigate the pharmacology of acetylcholine (ACh) responses in muscles to determine the properties of the ACh receptor (AChR), the functional availability of which was assessed using isotonic contraction measurement. Using broad spectrum of nicotinic and muscarinic ligands, we provide the evidence that contractions in the muscles are attributable to the activation of nAChRs that contain the α7-like subunit. Contractions could be evoked by nicotine, carbachol, succinylchloride, TMA, the selective α7-nAChR agonist choline chloride, 3-Bromocytisine and PNU-282987, and blocked by nAChR selective antagonists such as mytolon, hexamethonium, succinylchloride, d-tubocurarine, hemicholinium, DMDA (decamethonium), methyllycaconitine, α-Bungarotoxin (αBgTx) and α-Conotoxin IMI. The specific muscarinic agonist oxotremorine and arecoline failed to elicit contractions. Based on these pharmacological properties we conclude that the Na+ and Ca2+ permeable AChRs of the flexor muscle are nicotinic receptors that contain the α7-like subunit. Immunodetection experiments confirmed the presence of α7- or α7-like AChRs in muscle cells, and α4-AChRs in nerves innervating the muscle. These results support the conclusion that the slowly desensitizing αBgTx-sensitive responses obtained from flexor muscles are produced by activation of α7- like AChRs. This is the first demonstration of postsynaptic expression and an obligatory role for a functional α7-like nAChR in the molluscan periphery.

  17. Exploration of the molecular architecture of the orthosteric binding site in the α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor with analogs of 3-(dimethylamino)butyl dimethylcarbamate (DMABC) and 1-(pyridin-3-yl)-1,4-diazepane.

    PubMed

    Bach, Tinna B; Jensen, Anders A; Petersen, Jette G; Sørensen, Troels E; Della Volpe, Serena; Liu, Jun; Blaazer, Antoni R; van Muijlwijk-Koezen, Jacqueline E; Balle, Thomas; Frølund, Bente

    2015-09-18

    X-ray crystal structures of acetylcholine binding proteins (AChBPs) have revealed two different possible extensions to the classical ligand binding pocket known to accommodate various nicotinic agonists. One of the pockets is limited in size while the other is of considerable dimensions and protrudes along the interfacial cleft between subunits. To probe these putative extensions in functional nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), elongated analogs of 3-(dimethylamino)butyl dimethylcarbamate (DMABC) and 1-(pyridine-3-yl)-1,4-diazepane were prepared and characterized pharmacologically at neuronal heteromeric nAChRs. Although the new analogs, relative to parent compounds, displayed lower binding affinities, functional characterization of selected compounds revealed that they had retained partial α4β2 nAChR agonist activity. The structure-activity relationship data did not indicate an upper limit to the size of substituents as would have been expected if the ligand was bound in the smaller pocket. The data were better in agreement with a binding mode in which substituents protrude along the interfacial cleft of the receptor. This was further supported by docking into a homology model of the α4-β2 nAChR interface and by surface plasmon resonance biosensor analysis of binding of the compounds to acetylcholine-binding proteins, where they exhibit preference for Lymnaea stagnalis ACh binding protein (Ls-AChBP) over the Aplysia california ACh binding protein (Ac-AChBP). These results suggest new opportunities for expanding chemical space in the development of partial agonist and may be of interest in relation to development of novel smoking cessation aids.

  18. Expression of cloned α6* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jingyi; Kuryatov, Alexander; Lindstrom, Jon

    2015-09-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) are ACh-gated ion channels formed from five homologous subunits in subtypes defined by their subunit composition and stoichiometry. Some subtypes readily produce functional AChRs in Xenopus oocytes and transfected cell lines. α6β2β3* AChRs (subtypes formed from these subunits and perhaps others) are not easily expressed. This may be because the types of neurons in which they are expressed (typically dopaminergic neurons) have unique chaperones for assembling α6β2β3* AChRs, especially in the presence of the other AChR subtypes. Because these relatively minor brain AChR subtypes are of major importance in addiction to nicotine, it is important for drug development as well as investigation of their functional properties to be able to efficiently express human α6β2β3* AChRs. We review the issues and progress in expressing α6* AChRs. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'The Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: From Molecular Biology to Cognition'.

  19. Subtype Differences in Pre-Coupling of Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Jakubík, Jan; Janíčková, Helena; Randáková, Alena; El-Fakahany, Esam E.; Doležal, Vladimír

    2011-01-01

    Based on the kinetics of interaction between a receptor and G-protein, a myriad of possibilities may result. Two extreme cases are represented by: 1/Collision coupling, where an agonist binds to the free receptor and then the agonist-receptor complex “collides” with the free G-protein. 2/Pre-coupling, where stable receptor/G-protein complexes exist in the absence of agonist. Pre-coupling plays an important role in the kinetics of signal transduction. Odd-numbered muscarinic acetylcholine receptors preferentially couple to Gq/11, while even-numbered receptors prefer coupling to Gi/o. We analyzed the coupling status of the various subtypes of muscarinic receptors with preferential and non-preferential G-proteins. The magnitude of receptor-G-protein coupling was determined by the proportion of receptors existing in the agonist high-affinity binding conformation. Antibodies directed against the C-terminus of the α-subunits of the individual G-proteins were used to interfere with receptor-G-protein coupling. Effects of mutations and expression level on receptor-G-protein coupling were also investigated. Tested agonists displayed biphasic competition curves with the antagonist [3H]-N-methylscopolamine. Antibodies directed against the C-terminus of the α-subunits of the preferential G-protein decreased the proportion of high-affinity sites, and mutations at the receptor-G-protein interface abolished agonist high-affinity binding. In contrast, mutations that prevent receptor activation had no effect. Expression level of preferential G-proteins had no effect on pre-coupling to non-preferential G-proteins. Our data show that all subtypes of muscarinic receptors pre-couple with their preferential classes of G-proteins, but only M1 and M3 receptors also pre-couple with non-preferential Gi/o G-proteins. Pre-coupling is not dependent on agonist efficacy nor on receptor activation. The ultimate mode of coupling is therefore dictated by a combination of the receptor subtype

  20. Characterization and photoaffinity labeling of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Cremo, C.R.

    1983-01-01

    The muscarinic acetylcholine receptor, identified by tritiated L-quinuclidinyl benzilate (L-(/sup 3/H)QNB) binding, was solubilized from porcine atrial membranes using a 5:1 (w/w) ratio of digitonin and cholate. Specific binding activities of the solubilized receptor solutions usually exceeded 1.0 nmol L-(/sup 3/H)QNB sites per gram of protein, representing 75-98% total site recovery and a two- to three-fold enrichment over untreated atrial membranes. Two rapid assays for measuring the binding activities of detergent extracts were devised and compared with equilibrium dialysis. All three methods gave similar results. The equilibrium dissociation constant of the solubilized receptor for L-(/sup 3/H)QNB as determined by the three methods varied from 230 to 450 pM depending on the method and temperature. The interaction of alkyl quanidines and decahydrohistrionicotoxin with the membrane-bound and solubilized muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAcChR) from porcine atria was described. Alkyl guanidines with alkyl chain lengths from one to ten carbons displaced (/sup 3/H)L-quinuclidinyl bensilate ((/sup 3/H)L-QNB) competitively from a single class of sites for the membrane-bound mAcChR. From a plot of -1n K/sub i/ versus alkyl carbon chain number, a value of -(473 +/- 30) cal/mol was estimated as the energetic contribution per methylene group to the total binding energy. The synthesis and properties of a radiolabeled muscarinic antagonist photoaffinity probe, (/sup 3/H) p-azidoatropine methyl iodide were reported.

  1. Effect of calcium on nicotine-induced current expressed by an atypical alpha-bungarotoxin-insensitive nAChR2.

    PubMed

    Thany, Steeve H; Courjaret, Raphael; Lapied, Bruno

    2008-06-27

    Two distinct native alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-Bgt)-insensitive nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), named nAChR1 and nAChR2, were identified in the cockroach Periplaneta americana dorsal unpaired median (DUM) neurons. They differed in their electrophysiological, pharmacological properties and intracellular regulation pathways. nAChR2 being an atypical nicotinic receptor closed upon agonist application and its current-voltage relationship resulted from a reduction in potassium conductance. In this study, using whole-cell patch-clamp technique, we demonstrated that calcium modulated nAChR2-mediated nicotine response. Under 0.5 microM alpha-Bgt and 20 mM d-tubocurarine, the nicotine-induced inward current amplitude was strongly reduced in the presence of intracellularly applied BAPTA or bath application of calcium-free solution. In addition, using cadmium chloride, we showed that nicotine response was modulated by extracellular calcium through plasma membrane calcium channels. Moreover, extracellular application of caffeine and thapsigargin reduced nAChR2-mediated response. Together these experiments revealed a complex calcium-dependent regulation of nAChR2.

  2. Insights into the structural determinants required for high-affinity binding of chiral cyclopropane-containing ligands to α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: an integrated approach to behaviorally active nicotinic ligands.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Han-Kun; Eaton, J Brek; Yu, Li-Fang; Nys, Mieke; Mazzolari, Angelica; van Elk, René; Smit, August B; Alexandrov, Vadim; Hanania, Taleen; Sabath, Emily; Fedolak, Allison; Brunner, Daniela; Lukas, Ronald J; Vistoli, Giulio; Ulens, Chris; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2012-09-27

    Structure-based drug design can potentially accelerate the development of new therapeutics. In this study, a cocrystal structure of the acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP) from Capitella teleta (Ct) in complex with a cyclopropane-containing selective α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonist (compound 5) was acquired. The structural determinants required for ligand binding obtained from this AChBP X-ray structure were used to refine a previous model of the human α4β2-nAChR, thus possibly providing a better understanding of the structure of the human receptor. To validate the potential application of the structure of the Ct-AChBP in the engineering of new α4β2-nAChR ligands, homology modeling methods, combined with in silico ADME calculations, were used to design analogues of compound 5. The most promising compound, 12, exhibited an improved metabolic stability in comparison to the parent compound 5 while retaining favorable pharmacological parameters together with appropriate behavioral end points in the rodent studies.

  3. Insights into the Structural Determinants Required for High Affinity Binding of Chiral Cyclopropane-Containing Ligands to α4β2-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors; An Integrated Approach to Behaviorally Active Nicotinic Ligands

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Han-Kun; Eaton, J. Brek; Yu, Li-Fang; Nys, Mieke; Mazzolari, Angelica; van Elk, René; Smit, August B.; Alexandrov, Vadim; Hanania, Taleen; Sabath, Emily; Fedolak, Allison; Brunner, Daniela; Lukas, Ronald J.; Vistoli, Giulio; Ulens, Chris; Kozikowski, Alan P.

    2012-01-01

    Structure-based drug design can potentially accelerate the development of new therapeutics. In this study, a co-crystal structure of the acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP) from Capitella teleta (Ct) in complex with a cyclopropane-containing, selective α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonist (compound 5) was acquired. The structural determinants required for ligand binding obtained from this AChBP X-ray structure were used to refine our previous model of the human α4β2-nAChR, thus possibly providing a better understanding of the structure of the human receptor. In order to validate the potential application of the structure of the Ct-AChBP in the engineering of new α4β2-nAChR ligands, homology modeling methods, combined with in silico ADME calculations, were used to design analogs of compound 5. The most promising compound 12, exhibited an improved metabolic stability in comparison to the parent compound 5 while retaining favorable pharmacological parameters together with appropriate behavioral endpoints in the rodent studies. PMID:22928944

  4. alpha-conotoxin AuIB selectively blocks alpha3 beta4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and nicotine-evoked norepinephrine release.

    PubMed

    Luo, S; Kulak, J M; Cartier, G E; Jacobsen, R B; Yoshikami, D; Olivera, B M; McIntosh, J M

    1998-11-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) with putative alpha3 beta4-subunits have been implicated in the mediation of signaling in various systems, including ganglionic transmission peripherally and nicotine-evoked neurotransmitter release centrally. However, progress in the characterization of these receptors has been hampered by a lack of alpha3 beta4-selective ligands. In this report, we describe the purification and characterization of an alpha3 beta4 nAChR antagonist, alpha-conotoxin AuIB, from the venom of the "court cone," Conus aulicus. We also describe the total chemical synthesis of this and two related peptides that were also isolated from the venom. alpha-Conotoxin AuIB blocks alpha3 beta4 nAChRs expressed in Xenopus oocytes with an IC50 of 0.75 microM, a kon of 1.4 x 10(6) min-1 M-1, a koff of 0.48 min-1, and a Kd of 0.5 microM. Furthermore, alpha-conotoxin AuIB blocks the alpha3 beta4 receptor with >100-fold higher potency than other receptor subunit combinations, including alpha2 beta2, alpha2 beta4, alpha3 beta2, alpha4 beta2, alpha4 beta4, and alpha1 beta1 gamma delta. Thus, AuIB is a novel, selective probe for alpha3 beta4 nAChRs. AuIB (1-5 microM) blocks 20-35% of the nicotine-stimulated norepinephrine release from rat hippocampal synaptosomes, whereas nicotine-evoked dopamine release from striatal synaptosomes is not affected. Conversely, the alpha3 beta2-specific alpha-conotoxin MII (100 nM) blocks 33% of striatal dopamine release but not hippocampal norepinephrine release. This suggests that in the respective systems, alpha3 beta4-containing nAChRs mediate norepinephrine release, whereas alpha3 beta2-containing receptors mediate dopamine release.

  5. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors at the Single-Channel Level.

    PubMed

    Bouzat, Cecilia; Sine, Steven M

    2017-03-05

    Over the past four decades, the patch clamp technique and nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptors have established an enduring partnership. Like all good partnerships, each partner has proven significant in its own right, while their union has spurred innumerable advances in life science research. A member and prototype of the superfamily of pentameric ligand-gated ion channels, the nACh receptor is a chemo-electric transducer, binding nerve-released ACh and rapidly opening its channel to cation flow to elicit cellular excitation. A subject of a Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, the patch clamp technique provides unprecedented resolution of currents through single ion channels in their native cellular environments. Here, focusing on muscle and α7 nACh receptors, we describe the extraordinary contribution of the patch clamp technique toward understanding how they activate in response to neurotransmitter, how subtle structural and mechanistic differences among nACh receptor subtypes translate into significant physiological differences, and how nACh receptors are being exploited as therapeutic drug targets.

  6. Serotonergic modulation of muscle acetylcholine receptors of different subunit composition.

    PubMed Central

    García-Colunga, J; Miledi, R

    1996-01-01

    Modulation of muscle acetylcholine (AcCho) receptors (AcChoRs) by serotonin [5-hydroxytryptamine (5HT)] and other serotonergic compounds was studied in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Various combinations of alpha, beta, gamma, and delta subunit RNAs were injected into oocytes, and membrane currents elicited by AcCho were recorded under voltage clamp. Judging by the amplitudes of AcCho currents generated, the levels of functional receptor expression were: alpha beta gamma delta > alpha beta delta > alpha beta gamma > alpha gamma delta. The alpha beta gamma delta and alpha beta delta AcChoR Subtypes were strongly blocked by 5HT, whereas the alpha beta gamma receptor was blocked only slightly. The order of blocking potency of AcChoRs by 5HT was: alpha beta delta > alpha beta gamma delta > alpha beta gamma. 5HT receptor antagonists, such as methysergide and spiperone, were even more potent blockers of AcChoRs than 5HT but did not show much subunit selectivity. Blockage of alpha beta gamma delta and alpha beta delta receptors by 5HT was voltage-dependent, and the voltage dependence was abolished when the delta subunit was omitted. These findings may need to be taken into consideration when trying to elucidate the mode of action of many clinically important serotonergic compounds. Images Fig. 3 PMID:8633003

  7. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptors of the parasitic nematode Ascaris suum: formation of two distinct drug targets by varying the relative expression levels of two subunits.

    PubMed

    Williamson, Sally M; Robertson, Alan P; Brown, Laurence; Williams, Tracey; Woods, Debra J; Martin, Richard J; Sattelle, David B; Wolstenholme, Adrian J

    2009-07-01

    Parasitic nematodes are of medical and veterinary importance, adversely affecting human health and animal welfare. Ascaris suum is a gastrointestinal parasite of pigs; in addition to its veterinary significance it is a good model of the human parasite Ascaris lumbricoides, estimated to infect approximately 1.4 billion people globally. Anthelmintic drugs are essential to control nematode parasites, and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) on nerve and muscle are the targets of cholinergic anthelmintics such as levamisole and pyrantel. Previous genetic analyses of nematode nAChRs have been confined to Caenorhabditis elegans, which is phylogenetically distinct from Ascaris spp. and many other important parasites. Here we report the cloning and expression of two nAChR subunit cDNAs from A. suum. The subunits are very similar in sequence to C. elegans UNC-29 and UNC-38, are expressed on muscle cells and can be expressed robustly in Xenopus oocytes to form acetylcholine-, nicotine-, levamisole- and pyrantel-sensitive channels. We also demonstrate that changing the stoichiometry of the receptor by injecting different ratios of the subunit cRNAs can reproduce two of the three pharmacological subtypes of nAChR present in A. suum muscle cells. When the ratio was 5:1 (Asu-unc-38ratioAsu-unc-29), nicotine was a full agonist and levamisole was a partial agonist, and oocytes responded to oxantel, but not pyrantel. At the reverse ratio (1:5 Asu-unc-38ratioAsu-unc-29), levamisole was a full agonist and nicotine was a partial agonist, and the oocytes responded to pyrantel, but not oxantel. These results represent the first in vitro expression of any parasitic nicotinic receptor and show that their properties are substantially different from those of C. elegans. The results also show that changing the expression level of a single receptor subunit dramatically altered the efficacy of some anthelmintic drugs. In vitro expression of these subunits may permit the development of

  8. Anti-inflammatory role of microglial alpha7 nAChRs and its role in neuroprotection.

    PubMed

    Egea, Javier; Buendia, Izaskun; Parada, Esther; Navarro, Elisa; León, Rafael; Lopez, Manuela G

    2015-10-15

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are widely distributed throughout the central nervous system, being expressed in neurons and non-neuronal cells, where they participate in a variety of physiological responses like memory, learning, locomotion, attention, among others. We will focus on the α7 nAChR subtype, which has been implicated in neuroprotection, synaptic plasticity and neuronal survival, and is considered as a potential therapeutic target for several neurological diseases. Oxidative stress and neuroinflammation are currently considered as two of the most important pathological mechanisms common in neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer, Parkinson or Huntington diseases. In this review, we will first analysed the distribution and expression of nAChR in mammalian brain. Then, we focused on the function of the α7 nAChR subtype in neuronal and non-neuronal cells and its role in immune responses (cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway). Finally, we will revise the anti-inflammatory pathway promoted via α7 nAChR activation that is related to recruitment and activation of Jak2/STAT3 pathway, which on the one hand inhibits NF-κB nuclear translocation, and on the other hand, activates the master regulator of oxidative stress Nrf2/HO-1. This review provides a profound insight into the role of the α7 nAChR subtype in microglia and point out to microglial α7/HO-1 pathway as an anti-inflammatory therapeutic target.

  9. Physiological characterization of human muscle acetylcholine receptors from ALS patients.

    PubMed

    Palma, Eleonora; Inghilleri, Maurizio; Conti, Luca; Deflorio, Cristina; Frasca, Vittorio; Manteca, Alessia; Pichiorri, Floriana; Roseti, Cristina; Torchia, Gregorio; Limatola, Cristina; Grassi, Francesca; Miledi, Ricardo

    2011-12-13

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is characterized by progressive degeneration of motor neurons leading to muscle paralysis. Research in transgenic mice suggests that the muscle actively contributes to the disease onset, but such studies are difficult to pursue in humans and in vitro models would represent a good starting point. In this work we show that tiny amounts of muscle from ALS or from control denervated muscle, obtained by needle biopsy, are amenable to functional characterization by two different technical approaches: "microtransplantation" of muscle membranes into Xenopus oocytes and culture of myogenic satellite cells. Acetylcholine (ACh)-evoked currents and unitary events were characterized in oocytes and multinucleated myotubes. We found that ALS acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) retain their native physiological characteristics, being activated by ACh and nicotine and blocked by α-bungarotoxin (α-BuTX), d-tubocurarine (dTC), and galantamine. The reversal potential of ACh-evoked currents and the unitary channel behavior were also typical of normal muscle AChRs. Interestingly, in oocytes injected with muscle membranes derived from ALS patients, the AChRs showed a significant decrease in ACh affinity, compared with denervated controls. Finally, riluzole, the only drug currently used against ALS, reduced, in a dose-dependent manner, the ACh-evoked currents, indicating that its action remains to be fully characterized. The two methods described here will be important tools for elucidating the role of muscle in ALS pathogenesis and for developing drugs to counter the effects of this disease.

  10. Acetylcholine receptors at neuromuscular synapses: phylogenetic differences detected by snake alpha-neurotoxins.

    PubMed Central

    Burden, S J; Hartzell, H C; Yoshikami, D

    1975-01-01

    Phylogenetic differences in acetylcholine receptors from skeletal neuromuscular synapses of various species of snakes and lizards have been investigated, using the snake venom alpha-neurotoxins alpha-atratoxin (cobrotoxin) and alpha-bungarotoxin. The acetylcholine receptors of the phylogenetically primitive lizards, like those from all other vertebrates previously tested, are blocked by these alpha-neurotoxins. In contrast, receptors from snakes and advanced lizards are insensitive to one or both of the toxins. It is suggested that toxin-resistant acetylcholine receptors appeared early in the evolution of Squamata and preceded the appearance of alpha-neurotoxins. Images PMID:1081230

  11. Radiosynthesis of (S)-[(18)F]T1: The first PET radioligand for molecular imaging of α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Sarasamkan, Jiradanai; Fischer, Steffen; Deuther-Conrad, Winnie; Ludwig, Friedrich-Alexander; Scheunemann, Matthias; Arunrungvichian, Kuntarat; Vajragupta, Opa; Brust, Peter

    2017-03-18

    Recent pharmacologic data revealed the implication of α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in nicotine and drug addiction. To image α3β4 nAChRs in vivo, we aimed to establish the synthesis of a [(18)F]-labelled analog of the highly affine and selective α3β4 ligand (S)-3-(4-(4-fluorophenyl)-1H-1,2,3-triazol-1-yl)quinuclidine ((S)-T1). (S)-[(18)F]T1 was synthesized from ethynyl-4-[(18)F]fluorobenzene ([(18)F]5) and (S)-azidoquinuclidine by click reaction. After a synthesis time of 130min (S)-[(18)F]T1 was obtained with a radiochemical yield (non-decay corrected) of 4.3±1.3%, a radiochemical purity of >99% and a molar activity of >158 GBq/μmol. The brain uptake and the brain-to-blood ratio of (S)-[(18)F]T1 in mice at 30min post injection were 2.02 (SUV) and 6.1, respectively. According to an ex-vivo analysis, the tracer remained intact (>99%) in brain. Only one major radiometabolite was detected in plasma and urine samples. In-vitro autoradiography on pig brain slices revealed binding of (S)-[(18)F]T1 to brain regions associated with the expression of α3β4 nAChRs, which could be reduced by the α3β4 nAChR selective drug AT-1001. These findings make (S)-[(18)F]T1 a potential tool for the non-invasive imaging of α3β4 nAChRs in the brain by PET.

  12. Microtransplantation of acetylcholine receptors from normal or denervated rat skeletal muscles to frog oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Bernareggi, Annalisa; Reyes-Ruiz, Jorge Mauricio; Lorenzon, Paola; Ruzzier, Fabio; Miledi, Ricardo

    2011-01-01

    Cell membranes, carrying neurotransmitter receptors and ion channels, can be ‘microtransplanted’ into frog oocytes. This technique allows a direct functional characterization of the original membrane proteins, together with any associated molecules they may have, still embedded in their natural lipid environment. This approach has been previously demonstrated to be very useful to study neurotransmitter receptors and ion channels contained in cell membranes isolated from human brains. Here, we examined the possibility of using the microtransplantation method to study acetylcholine receptors from normal and denervated rat skeletal muscles. We found that the muscle membranes, carrying their fetal or adult acetylcholine receptor isoforms, could be efficiently microtransplanted to the oocyte membrane, making the oocytes become sensitive to acetylcholine. These results show that oocytes injected with skeletal muscle membranes efficiently incorporate functional acetylcholine receptors, thus making the microtransplantation approach a valuable tool to further investigate receptors and ion channels of human muscle diseases. PMID:21224230

  13. Acetylcholine receptor extracellular domain determines sensitivity to nicotine-induced inactivation.

    PubMed

    Kuryatov, A; Olale, F A; Choi, C; Lindstrom, J

    2000-03-30

    We have shown previously that chronic exposure to submicromolar concentrations of nicotine permanently inactivates alpha4beta2 and alpha7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors while alpha3beta2 acetylcholine receptors are resistant to inactivation. Phosphorylation of the large cytoplasmic domain has been proposed to mediate functional inactivation. Chimeric subunits consisting of human alpha4 sequence from their N-terminus to either the beginning of the first transmembrane domain or the large cytoplasmic domain and alpha3 sequences thereafter formed acetylcholine receptors with beta2 subunits which were as susceptible to nicotine-induced inactivation as wild-type alpha4 acetylcholine receptors. The converse chimeras, containing the N-terminal parts of the alpha3 subunit and the C-terminal parts of the alpha4 subunit, formed acetylcholine receptors with beta2 subunits which were as resistant to nicotine-induced inactivation as wild-type alpha3beta2 acetylcholine receptors. Thus, inactivation of acetylcholine receptors produced by chronic exposure to nicotine results primarily from effects of the agonist on the extracellular and transmembrane domains of the alpha subunit.

  14. The Unique α4(+)/(−)α4 Agonist Binding Site in (α4)3(β2)2 Subtype Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Permits Differential Agonist Desensitization Pharmacology versus the (α4)2(β2)3 Subtype

    PubMed Central

    Eaton, J. Brek; Lucero, Linda M.; Stratton, Harrison; Chang, Yongchang; Cooper, John F.; Lindstrom, Jon M.; Lukas, Ronald J.

    2014-01-01

    Selected nicotinic agonists were used to activate and desensitize high-sensitivity (HS) (α4)2(β2)3) or low-sensitivity (LS) (α4)3(β2)2) isoforms of human α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Function was assessed using 86Rb+ efflux in a stably transfected SH-EP1-hα4β2 human epithelial cell line, and two-electrode voltage-clamp electrophysiology in Xenopus laevis oocytes expressing concatenated pentameric HS or LS α4β2-nAChR constructs (HSP and LSP). Unlike previously studied agonists, desensitization by the highly selective agonists A-85380 [3-(2(S)-azetidinylmethoxy)pyridine] and sazetidine-A (Saz-A) preferentially reduced α4β2-nAChR HS-phase versus LS-phase responses. The concatenated-nAChR experiments confirmed that approximately 20% of LS-isoform acetylcholine-induced function occurs in an HS-like phase, which is abolished by Saz-A preincubation. Six mutant LSPs were generated, each targeting a conserved agonist binding residue within the LS-isoform-only α4(+)/(−)α4 interface agonist binding site. Every mutation reduced the percentage of LS-phase function, demonstrating that this site underpins LS-phase function. Oocyte-surface expression of the HSP and each of the LSP constructs was statistically indistinguishable, as measured using β2-subunit–specific [125I]mAb295 labeling. However, maximum function is approximately five times greater on a “per-receptor” basis for unmodified LSP versus HSP α4β2-nAChRs. Thus, recruitment of the α4(+)/(−)α4 site at higher agonist concentrations appears to augment otherwise-similar function mediated by the pair of α4(+)/(−)β2 sites shared by both isoforms. These studies elucidate the receptor-level differences underlying the differential pharmacology of the two α4β2-nAChR isoforms, and demonstrate that HS versus LS α4β2-nAChR activity can be selectively manipulated using pharmacological approaches. Since α4β2 nAChRs are the predominant neuronal subtype, these discoveries likely

  15. Use of an α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit concatamer to characterize ganglionic receptor subtypes with specific subunit composition reveals species-specific pharmacologic properties.

    PubMed

    Stokes, Clare; Papke, Roger L

    2012-09-01

    Drug development for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) is challenged by subtype diversity arising from variations in subunit composition. On-target activity for neuronal heteromeric receptors is typically associated with CNS receptors that contain α4 and other subunits, while off-target activity could be associated with ganglionic-type receptors containing α3β4 binding sites and other subunits, including β4, β2, α5, or α3 as a structural subunit in the pentamer. Additional interest in α3 β4 α5-containing receptors arises from genome-wide association studies linking these genes, and a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in α5 in particular, to lung cancer and heavy smoking. While α3 and β4 readily form receptors in expression system such as the Xenopus oocyte, since α5 is not required for function, simple co-expression approaches may under-represent α5-containing receptors. We used a concatamer of human α3 and β4 subunits to form ligand-binding domains, and show that we can force the insertions of alternative structural subunits into the functional pentamers. These α3β4 variants differ in sensitivity to ACh, nicotine, varenicline, and cytisine. Our data indicated lower efficacy for varenicline and cytisine than expected for β4-containing receptors, based on previous studies of rodent receptors. We confirm that these therapeutically important α4 receptor partial agonists may present different autonomic-based side-effect profiles in humans than will be seen in rodent models, with varenicline being more potent for human than rat receptors and cytisine less potent. Our initial characterizations failed to find functional effects of the α5 SNP. However, our data validate this approach for further investigations.

  16. Enantiopure Cyclopropane-Bearing Pyridyldiazabicyclo[3.3.0]octanes as Selective α4β2-nAChR Ligands

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    We report the synthesis and characterization of a series of enantiopure 5-cyclopropane-bearing pyridyldiazabicyclo[3.3.0]octanes that display low nanomolar binding affinities and act as functional agonists at α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtype. Structure–activity relationship studies revealed that incorporation of a cyclopropane-containing side chain at the 5-position of the pyridine ring provides ligands with improved subtype selectivity for nAChR β2 subunit-containing nAChR subtypes (β2*-nAChRs) over β4*-nAChRs compared to the parent compound 4. Compound 15 exhibited subnanomolar binding affinity for α4β2- and α4β2*-nAChRs with negligible interaction. Functional assays confirm selectivity for α4β2-nAChRs. Furthermore, using the SmartCube assay system, this ligand showed antidepressant, anxiolytic, and antipsychotic features, while mouse forced-swim assay further confirm the antidepressant-like property of 15. PMID:25408831

  17. Enantiopure Cyclopropane-Bearing Pyridyldiazabicyclo[3.3.0]octanes as Selective α4β2-nAChR Ligands.

    PubMed

    Onajole, Oluseye K; Eaton, J Brek; Lukas, Ronald J; Brunner, Dani; Thiede, Lucinda; Caldarone, Barbara J; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2014-11-13

    We report the synthesis and characterization of a series of enantiopure 5-cyclopropane-bearing pyridyldiazabicyclo[3.3.0]octanes that display low nanomolar binding affinities and act as functional agonists at α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtype. Structure-activity relationship studies revealed that incorporation of a cyclopropane-containing side chain at the 5-position of the pyridine ring provides ligands with improved subtype selectivity for nAChR β2 subunit-containing nAChR subtypes (β2*-nAChRs) over β4*-nAChRs compared to the parent compound 4. Compound 15 exhibited subnanomolar binding affinity for α4β2- and α4β2*-nAChRs with negligible interaction. Functional assays confirm selectivity for α4β2-nAChRs. Furthermore, using the SmartCube assay system, this ligand showed antidepressant, anxiolytic, and antipsychotic features, while mouse forced-swim assay further confirm the antidepressant-like property of 15.

  18. Distinct effects of ventral tegmental area NMDA and acetylcholine receptor blockade on conditioned reinforcement produced by food-associated cues.

    PubMed

    Wickham, R J; Solecki, W B; Nunes, E J; Addy, N A

    2015-08-20

    Stimuli paired with rewards acquire reinforcing properties to promote reward-seeking behavior. Previous work supports the role of ventral tegmental area (VTA) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in mediating conditioned reinforcement elicited by drug-associated cues. However, it is not known whether these cholinergic mechanisms are specific to drug-associated cues or whether VTA cholinergic mechanisms also underlie the ability of cues paired with natural rewards to act as conditioned reinforcers. Burst firing of VTA dopamine (DA) neurons and the subsequent phasic DA release in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) plays an important role in cue-mediated behavior and in the ability of cues to acquire reinforcing properties. In the VTA, both AChRs and N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) regulate DA burst firing and phasic DA release. Here, we tested the role of VTA nAChRs, muscarinic AChRs (mAChRs), and NMDARs in the conditioned reinforcement elicited by a food-associated, natural reward cue. Subjects received 10 consecutive days of Pavlovian conditioning training where lever extension served as a predictive cue for food availability. On day 11, rats received bilateral VTA infusion of saline, AP-5 (0.1 or 1μg), mecamylamine (MEC: 3 or 30μg) or scopolamine (SCOP: 3 or 66.7μg) immediately prior to the conditioned reinforcement test. During the test, nosepoking into the active (conditioned reinforced, CR) noseport produced a lever cue while nosepoking on the inactive (non-conditioned reinforced, NCR) noseport had no consequence. AP-5 robustly attenuated conditioned reinforcement and blocked discrimination between CR and NCR noseports at the 1-μg dose. MEC infusion decreased responding for both CR and NCR while 66.7-μg SCOP disrupted the subject's ability to discriminate between CR and NCR. Together, our data suggest that VTA NMDARs and mAChRs, but not nAChRs, play a role in the ability of natural reward-associated cues to act as conditioned reinforcers.

  19. Discovery of new muscarinic acetylcholine receptor antagonists from Scopolia tangutica

    PubMed Central

    Du, Nana; Liu, Yanfang; Zhang, Xiuli; Wang, Jixia; Zhao, Jianqiang; He, Jian; Zhou, Han; Mei, Lijuan; Liang, Xinmiao

    2017-01-01

    Scopolia tangutica (S. tangutica) is a traditional Chinese medicinal plant used for antispasmodics, anesthesia, analgesia and sedation. Its pharmacological activities are mostly associated with the antagonistic activity at muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAchRs) of several known alkaloids such as atropine and scopolamine. With our recent identification of four hydroxycinnamic acid amides from S. tangutica, we hypothesized that this plant may contain previously unidentified alkaloids that may also contribute to its in vivo effect. Herein, we used a bioassay-guided multi-dimension separation strategy to discover novel mAchR antagonists from S. tangutica. The core of this approach is to use label-free cell phenotypic assay to first identify active fractions, and then to guide purification of active ligands. Besides four tropanes and six cinnamic acid amides that have been previously isolated from S. tangutica, we recently identified two new tropanes, one new cinnamic acid amide, and nine other compounds. Six tropane compounds purified from S. tangutica for the first time were confirmed to be competitive antagonists of muscarinic receptor 3 (M3), including the two new ones 8 and 12 with IC50 values of 1.97 μM and 4.47 μM, respectively. Furthermore, the cinnamic acid amide 17 displayed 15-fold selectivity for M1 over M3 receptors. These findings will be useful in designing lead compounds for mAchRs and elucidating mechanisms of action of S. tangutica. PMID:28387362

  20. Revisiting the endocytosis of the m2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Ockenga, Wymke; Tikkanen, Ritva

    2015-05-12

    The agonist-induced endocytosis of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M2 is different from that of the other members of the muscarinic receptor family. The uptake of the M2 receptor involves the adapter proteins of the β-arrestin family and the small GTPase ADP-ribosylation factor 6. However, it has remained inconclusive if M2 endocytosis is dependent on clathrin or the large GTPase dynamin. We here show by means of knocking down the clathrin heavy chain that M2 uptake upon agonist stimulation requires clathrin. The expression of various dominant-negative dynamin-2 mutants and the use of chemical inhibitors of dynamin function revealed that dynamin expression and membrane localization as such appear to be necessary for M2 endocytosis, whereas dynamin GTPase activity is not required for this process. Based on the data from the present and from previous studies, we propose that M2 endocytosis takes place by means of an atypical clathrin-mediated pathway that may involve a specific subset of clathrin-coated pits/vesicles.

  1. Anesthetics Target Interfacial Transmembrane Sites in Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Forman, Stuart A.; Chiara, David C.; Miller, Keith W.

    2014-01-01

    General anesthetics are a heterogeneous group of small amphiphilic ligands that interact weakly at multiple allosteric sites on many pentameric ligand gated ion channels (pLGICs), resulting in either inhibition, potentiation of channel activity, or both. Allosteric principles imply that modulator sites must change configuration and ligand affinity during receptor state transitions. Thus, general anesthetics and related compounds are useful both as state-dependent probes of receptor structure and as potentially selective modulators of pLGIC functions. This review focuses on general anesthetic sites in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, which were among the first anesthetic-sensitive pLGIC experimental models studied, with particular focus on sites formed by transmembrane domain elements. Structural models place many of these sites at interfaces between two or more pLGIC transmembrane helices both within subunits and between adjacent subunits, and between transmembrane helices and either lipids (the lipid-protein interface) or water (i.e. the ion channel). A single general anesthetic may bind at multiple allosteric sites in pLGICs, producing a net effect of either inhibition (e.g. blocking the ion channel) or enhanced channel gating (e.g. inter-subunit sites). Other general anesthetic sites identified by photolabeling or crystallography are tentatively linked to functional effects, including intra-subunit helix bundle sites and the lipid-protein interface. PMID:25316107

  2. Revisiting the Endocytosis of the M2 Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Ockenga, Wymke; Tikkanen, Ritva

    2015-01-01

    The agonist-induced endocytosis of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M2 is different from that of the other members of the muscarinic receptor family. The uptake of the M2 receptor involves the adapter proteins of the β-arrestin family and the small GTPase ADP-ribosylation factor 6. However, it has remained inconclusive if M2 endocytosis is dependent on clathrin or the large GTPase dynamin. We here show by means of knocking down the clathrin heavy chain that M2 uptake upon agonist stimulation requires clathrin. The expression of various dominant-negative dynamin-2 mutants and the use of chemical inhibitors of dynamin function revealed that dynamin expression and membrane localization as such appear to be necessary for M2 endocytosis, whereas dynamin GTPase activity is not required for this process. Based on the data from the present and from previous studies, we propose that M2 endocytosis takes place by means of an atypical clathrin-mediated pathway that may involve a specific subset of clathrin-coated pits/vesicles. PMID:25985102

  3. Immunological relationship between acetylcholine receptor and thymus: a possible significance in myasthenia gravis.

    PubMed Central

    Aharonov, A; Tarrab-Hazdai, R; Abramsky, O; Fuchs, S

    1975-01-01

    A defined immunological cross-reaction was observed between acetylcholine receptor fraction from the electric eel, Electrophorus electricus, and two calf thymus fractions. The cross-reaction was demonstrated on the cellular level by means of the lymphocyte transformation technique, and on the humoral level, by means of the microcomplement fixation assay. In the human disease myasthenia gravis both acetylcholine receptor at the neuromuscular junction and the thymus are affected, probably by an autoimmune mechanism. The immunological cross-reaction between acetylcholine receptor and thymic components may explain the association between endplate and thymus disorders in myasthenia gravis. PMID:1055418

  4. Chemistry and pharmacological characterization of novel nitrogen analogues of AMOP-H-OH (Sazetidine-A, 6-[5-(azetidin-2-ylmethoxy)pyridin-3-yl]hex-5-yn-1-ol) as α4β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-selective partial agonists.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jianhua; Eaton, J Brek; Caldarone, Barbara; Lukas, Ronald J; Kozikowski, Alan P

    2010-10-14

    In order to advance therapeutic applications of nicotinic ligands, continuing research efforts are being directed toward the identification and characterization of novel nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) ligands that are both potent and subtype selective. Herein we report the synthesis and pharmacological evaluation of members of a new series of 3-alkoxy-5-aminopyridine derivatives that display good selectivity for the α4β2-nAChR subtype based on ligand binding and functional evaluations. The most potent ligand in this series, compound 64, showed high radioligand binding affinity and selectivity for rat α4β2-nAChR with a K(i) value of 1.2 nM and 4700-fold selectivity for α4β2- over α3β4-nAChR, and ∼100-fold selectivity for functional, high-sensitivity, human α4β2-nAChR over α3β4*-nAChR. In the mouse forced swim test, compound 64 exhibited antidepressant-like effects. Structure-activity relationship (SAR) analyses suggest that the introduction of additional substituents to the amino group present on the pyridine ring of the N-demethylated analogue of compound 17 can provide potent α4β2-nAChR-selective ligands for possible use in treatment of neurological and psychiatric disorders including depression.

  5. α7-Containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on interneurons of the basolateral amygdala and their role in the regulation of the network excitability

    PubMed Central

    Pidoplichko, Volodymyr I.; Prager, Eric M.; Aroniadou-Anderjaska, Vassiliki

    2013-01-01

    The basolateral amygdala (BLA) plays a key role in fear-related learning and memory, in the modulation of cognitive functions, and in the overall regulation of emotional behavior. Pathophysiological alterations involving hyperexcitability in this brain region underlie anxiety and other emotional disorders as well as some forms of epilepsy. GABAergic interneurons exert a tight inhibitory control over the BLA network; understanding the mechanisms that regulate their activity is necessary for understanding physiological and disordered BLA functions. The BLA receives dense cholinergic input from the basal forebrain, affecting both normal functions and dysfunctions of the amygdala, but the mechanisms involved in the cholinergic regulation of inhibitory activity in the BLA are unclear. Using whole cell recordings in rat amygdala slices, here we demonstrate that the α7-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7-nAChRs) are present on somatic or somatodendritic regions of BLA interneurons. These receptors are active in the basal state enhancing GABAergic inhibition, and their further, exogenous activation produces a transient but dramatic increase of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents in principal BLA neurons. In the absence of AMPA/kainate receptor antagonists, activation of α7-nAChRs in the BLA network increases both GABAergic and glutamatergic spontaneous currents in BLA principal cells, but the inhibitory currents are enhanced significantly more than the excitatory currents, reducing overall excitability. The anxiolytic effects of nicotine as well as the role of the α7-nAChRs in seizure activity involving the amygdala and in mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia and Alzheimer's disease, may be better understood in light of the present findings. PMID:24004528

  6. Acute sarin exposure causes differential regulation of choline acetyltransferase, acetylcholinesterase, and acetylcholine receptors in the central nervous system of the rat.

    PubMed

    Khan, W A; Dechkovskaia, A M; Herrick, E A; Jones, K H; Abou-Donia, M B

    2000-09-01

    Acute neurotoxic effects of sarin (O:-isopropylmethylphosphonoflouridate) in male Sprague-Dawley rats were studied. The animals were treated with intramuscular (im) injections of either 1 x LD(50) (100 microg/kg), and sacrificed at 0. 5, 1, 3, 6, 15, or 20 h after treatment, or with im injections of either 0.01, 0.1, 0.5, or 1 x LD(50) and sacrificed 15 h after treatment. Plasma butyrylcholinesterase (BChE) and brain regional acetylcholinesterase (AChE) were inhibited (45-55%) by 30 min after the LD(50) dose. BChE in the plasma and AChE in cortex, brainstem, midbrain, and cerebellum remained inhibited for up to 20 h following a single LD(50) treatment. No inhibition in plasma BChE activity was observed 20 h after treatment with doses lower than the LD(50) dose. Midbrain and brainstem seem to be most responsive to sarin treatment at lower doses, as these regions exhibited inhibition (approximately 49% and 10%, respectively) in AChE activity following 0.1 x LD(50) treatment, after 20 h. Choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) activity was increased in cortex, brainstem, and midbrain 6 h after LD(50) treatment, and the elevated enzyme activity persisted up to 20 h after treatment. Cortex ChAT activity was significantly increased following a 0.1 x LD(50) dose, whereas brainstem and midbrain did not show any effect at lower doses. Treatment with an LD(50) dose caused a biphasic response in cortical nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) and muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (m2-mAChR) ligand binding, using [(3)H]cytisine and [(3)H]AFDX-384 as ligands for nAChR and mAChR, respectively. Decreases at 1 and 3 h and consistent increases at 6, 15, and 20 h in nAChR and m2-mAChR were observed following a single LD(50) dose. The increase in nAChR ligand binding densities was much more pronounced than in mAChR. These results suggest that a single exposure of sarin, ranging from 0.1 to 1 x LD(50), modulates the cholinergic pathways differently and thereby causes dysregulation in

  7. Contribution of α4β2 nAChR in nicotine-induced intracellular calcium response and excitability of MSDB neurons.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jiangang; Wang, Yali; Wang, Yang; Wang, Ran; Zhang, Yunpeng; Zhang, Qian; Lu, Chengbiao

    2014-12-10

    The neurons of medial septal diagonal band of broca (MSDB) project to hippocampus and play an important role in MSDB-hippocampal synaptic transmission, plasticity and network oscillation. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits, α4β2 and α7 nAChRs, are expressed in MSDB neurons and permeable to calcium ions, which may modulate the function of MSDB neurons. The aims of this study are to determine the roles of selective nAChR activation on the calcium responses and membrane currents in MSDB neurons. Our results showed that nicotine increased calcium responses in the majority of MSDB neurons, pre-treatment of MSDB slices with a α4β2 nAChR antagonist, DhβE but not a α7 nAChR antagonist, MLA prevented nicotine-induced calcium responses. The whole cell patch clamp recordings showed that nicotine-induced inward current and acetylcholine (ACh) induced-firing activity can be largely reduced or prevented by DhβE in MSDB neurons. Surprisingly, post-treatment of α4β2 or α7 nAChR antagonists failed to block nicotine׳s role, they increased calcium responses instead. Application of calcium chelator EGTA reduced calcium responses in all neurons tested. These results suggest that there was a subtype specific modulation of nAChRs on calcium signaling and membrane currents in MSDB neurons and nAChR antagonists were also able to induce calcium responses involving a distinct mechanism.

  8. A role for acetylcholine receptors in the fusion of chick myoblasts

    PubMed Central

    1988-01-01

    The role of acetylcholine receptors in the control of chick myoblast fusion in culture has been explored. Spontaneous fusion of myoblasts was inhibited by the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor antagonists alpha- bungarotoxin, Naja naja toxin and monoclonal antibody mcAb 5.5. The muscarinic antagonists QNB and n-methyl scopolamine were without effect. Atropine had no effect below 1 microM, where it blocks muscarinic receptors; at higher concentrations, when it blocks nicotinic receptors also, atropine inhibited myoblast fusion. The inhibitions imposed by acetylcholine receptor antagonists lasted for approximately 12 h; fusion stimulated by other endogenous substances then took over. The inhibition was limited to myoblast fusion. The increases in cell number, DNA content, the level of creatine phosphokinase activity (both total and muscle-specific isozyme) and the appearance of heavy chain myosin, which accompany muscle differentiation, followed a normal time course. Pre-fusion myoblasts, fusing myoblasts, and young myotubes specifically bound labeled alpha- bungarotoxin, indicating the presence of acetylcholine receptors. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist, carbachol, induced uptake of [14C]Guanidinium through the acetylcholine receptor. Myoblasts, aligned myoblasts and young myotubes expressed the synthetic enzyme Choline acetyltransferase and stained positively with antibodies against acetylcholine. The appearance of ChAT activity in myogenic cultures was prevented by treatment with BUDR; nonmyogenic cells in the cultures expressed ChAT at a level which was too low to account for the activity in myogenic cultures. We conclude that activation of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor is part of the mechanism controlling spontaneous myoblast fusion and that myoblasts synthesize an endogenous, fusion- inducing agent that activates the nicotinic ACh receptor. PMID:3372592

  9. Physiological characterization of human muscle acetylcholine receptors from ALS patients

    PubMed Central

    Palma, Eleonora; Inghilleri, Maurizio; Conti, Luca; Deflorio, Cristina; Frasca, Vittorio; Manteca, Alessia; Pichiorri, Floriana; Roseti, Cristina; Torchia, Gregorio; Limatola, Cristina; Grassi, Francesca; Miledi, Ricardo

    2011-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is characterized by progressive degeneration of motor neurons leading to muscle paralysis. Research in transgenic mice suggests that the muscle actively contributes to the disease onset, but such studies are difficult to pursue in humans and in vitro models would represent a good starting point. In this work we show that tiny amounts of muscle from ALS or from control denervated muscle, obtained by needle biopsy, are amenable to functional characterization by two different technical approaches: “microtransplantation” of muscle membranes into Xenopus oocytes and culture of myogenic satellite cells. Acetylcholine (ACh)-evoked currents and unitary events were characterized in oocytes and multinucleated myotubes. We found that ALS acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) retain their native physiological characteristics, being activated by ACh and nicotine and blocked by α-bungarotoxin (α-BuTX), d-tubocurarine (dTC), and galantamine. The reversal potential of ACh-evoked currents and the unitary channel behavior were also typical of normal muscle AChRs. Interestingly, in oocytes injected with muscle membranes derived from ALS patients, the AChRs showed a significant decrease in ACh affinity, compared with denervated controls. Finally, riluzole, the only drug currently used against ALS, reduced, in a dose-dependent manner, the ACh-evoked currents, indicating that its action remains to be fully characterized. The two methods described here will be important tools for elucidating the role of muscle in ALS pathogenesis and for developing drugs to counter the effects of this disease. PMID:22128328

  10. Mutational analysis of muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit assembly

    PubMed Central

    1990-01-01

    The structural elements required for normal maturation and assembly of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit were investigated by expression of mutated subunits in transfected fibroblasts. Normally, the wild-type alpha subunit acquires high affinity alpha bungarotoxin binding in a time-dependent manner; however, mutation of the 128 and/or 142 cysteines to either serine or alanine, as well as deletion of the entire 14 amino acids in this region abolished all detectable high affinity binding. Nonglycosylated subunits that had a serine to glycine mutation in the consensus sequence also did not efficiently attain high affinity binding to toxin. In contrast, mutation of the proline at position 136 to glycine or alanine, or a double mutation of the cysteines at position 192 and 193 to serines had no effect on the acquisition of high affinity toxin binding. These data suggest that a disulfide bridge between cysteines 128 and 142 and oligosaccharide addition at asparagine 141 are required for the normal maturation of alpha subunit as assayed by high affinity toxin binding. The unassembled wild-type alpha subunit expressed in fibroblasts is normally degraded with a t1/2 of 2 h; upon assembly with the delta subunit, the degradation rate slows significantly (t1/2 greater than 13 h). All mutated alpha subunits retained the capacity to assemble with a delta subunit coexpressed in fibroblasts; however, mutated alpha subunits that were not glycosylated or did not acquire high affinity toxin binding were rapidly degraded (t1/2 = 20 min to 2 h) regardless of whether or not they assembled with the delta subunit. Assembly and rapid degradation of nonglycosylated acetylcholine receptor (AChR) subunits and subunit complexes were also observed in tunicamycin- treated BC3H-1 cells, a mouse musclelike cell line that normally expresses functional AChR. Hence, rapid degradation may be one form of regulation assuring that only correctly processed and assembled subunits

  11. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors: location of the ligand binding site

    SciTech Connect

    Hulme, E.; Wheatley, M.; Curtis, C.; Birdsall, N.

    1987-05-01

    The key to understanding the pharmacological specificity of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChR's) is the location within the receptor sequence of the amino acid residues responsible for ligand binding. To approach this problem, they have purified mAChR's from rat brain to homogeneity by sequential ion-exchange chromatography, affinity chromatography and molecular weight fractionation. Following labelling of the binding site with an alkylating affinity label, /sup 3/H-propylbenzilycholine mustard aziridinium ion (/sup 3/H-PrBCM), the mAChR was digested with a lysine-specific endoproteinase, and a ladder of peptides of increasing molecular weight, each containing the glycosylated N-terminus, isolated by chromatography on wheat-germ agglutinin sepharose. The pattern of labelling showed that a residue in the peptides containing transmembrane helices 2 and/or 3 of the mAChR was alkylated. The linkage was cleaved by 1 M hydroxylamine, showing that /sup 3/H-PrBCM was attached to an acidic residue, whose properties strongly suggested it to be embedded in a hydrophobic intramembrane region of the mAChR. Examination of the cloned sequence of the mAChR reveals several candidate residues, the most likely of which is homologous to an aspartic acid residue thought to protonate the retinal Schiff's base in the congeneric protein rhodopsin.

  12. Histamine H3 receptors regulate acetylcholine release from the guinea pig ileum myenteric plexus

    SciTech Connect

    Poli, E.; Coruzzi, G.; Bertaccini, G. )

    1991-01-01

    The effect of selective histamine H3-receptor agonists and antagonists on the acetylcholine release from peripheral nerves was evaluated in the guinea pig longitudinal muscle-myenteric plexus preparations, preloaded with ({sup 3}H)choline. In the presence of H1 and H2 blockade, histamine and (R)-{alpha}-methylhistamine inhibited the electrically-evoked acetylcholine release, being (R)-{alpha}-methylhistamine more active than histamine, but behaving as a partial agonist. The effect of histamine was completely reversed by selective H3-blocking drugs, thioperamide and impromidine, while only submaximal doses of (R)-{alpha}-methylhistamine were antagonized. Furthermore, thioperamide and impromidine enhanced the electrically-evoked acetylcholine release. On the contrary, the new H3-blocker, HST-7, was found substantially ineffective, both as histamine antagonist and as acetylcholine overflow enhancer. These data suggest that histamine exerts an inhibitory control on the acetylcholine release from intestinal cholinergic nerves through the activation of H3 receptors.

  13. Rabies virus interaction with various cell lines is independent of the acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Reagan, K J; Wunner, W H

    1985-01-01

    Rabies virus infects most cells in vitro. The presence of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor on the plasma membrane of various cell lines is not an obligate factor for rabies virus susceptibility of those cells.

  14. Non-Neuronal Functions of the M2 Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Ockenga, Wymke; Kühne, Sina; Bocksberger, Simone; Banning, Antje; Tikkanen, Ritva

    2013-01-01

    Acetylcholine is an important neurotransmitter whose effects are mediated by two classes of receptors. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are ion channels, whereas the muscarinic receptors belong to the large family of G protein coupled seven transmembrane helix receptors. Beyond its function in neuronal systems, it has become evident that acetylcholine also plays an important role in non-neuronal cells such as epithelial and immune cells. Furthermore, many cell types in the periphery are capable of synthesizing acetylcholine and express at least some of the receptors. In this review, we summarize the non-neuronal functions of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, especially those of the M2 muscarinic receptor in epithelial cells. We will review the mechanisms of signaling by the M2 receptor but also the cellular trafficking and ARF6 mediated endocytosis of this receptor, which play an important role in the regulation of signaling events. In addition, we provide an overview of the M2 receptor in human pathological conditions such as autoimmune diseases and cancer. PMID:24705159

  15. Evaluation of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists and positive allosteric modulators using the parallel oocyte electrophysiology test station.

    PubMed

    Malysz, John; Grønlien, Jens H; Timmermann, Daniel B; Håkerud, Monika; Thorin-Hagene, Kirsten; Ween, Hilde; Trumbull, Jonathan D; Xiong, Yongli; Briggs, Clark A; Ahring, Philip K; Dyhring, Tino; Gopalakrishnan, Murali

    2009-08-01

    Neuronal acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) of the alpha7 subtype are ligand-gated ion channels that are widely distributed throughout the central nervous system and considered as attractive targets for the treatment of various neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases. Both agonists and positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) are being developed as means to enhance the function of alpha7 nAChRs. The in vitro characterization of alpha7 ligands, including agonists and PAMs, relies on multiple technologies, but only electrophysiological measurements assess the channel activity directly. Traditional electrophysiological approaches utilizing two-electrode voltage clamp or patch clamp in isolated cells have very low throughput to significantly impact drug discovery. Abbott (Abbott Park, IL) has developed a two-electrode voltage clamp-based system, the Parallel Oocyte Electrophysiology Test Station (POETs()), that allows for the investigation of ligand-gated ion channels such as alpha7 nAChRs in a higher-throughput manner. We describe the utility of this technology in the discovery of selective alpha7 agonists and PAMs. With alpha7 agonists, POETs experiments involved both single- and multiple-point concentration-response testing revealing diverse activation profiles (zero efficacy desensitizing, partial, and full agonists). In the characterization of alpha7 PAMs, POETs testing has served as a reliable primary or secondary screen identifying compounds that fall into distinct functional types depending on the manner in which current potentiation occurred. Type I PAMs (eg, genistein, NS1738, and 5-hydroxyindole) increase predominantly the peak amplitude response, type II PAMs affect the peak current and current decay (eg, PNU-120,596 and 4-(naphthalen-1-yl)-3a,4,5,9b-tetrahydro-3H-cyclopenta[c]quinoline-8-sulfonamide), and anothertype slowing the current decay kinetics in the absence of increases in the peak current. In summary, POETs technology allows for significant

  16. Activity of nAChRs containing alpha9 subunits modulates synapse stabilization via bidirectional signaling programs.

    PubMed

    Murthy, Vidya; Taranda, Julián; Elgoyhen, A Belén; Vetter, Douglas E

    2009-12-01

    Although the synaptogenic program for cholinergic synapses of the neuromuscular junction is well known, little is known of the identity or dynamic expression patterns of proteins involved in non-neuromuscular nicotinic synapse development. We have previously demonstrated abnormal presynaptic terminal morphology following loss of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) alpha9 subunit expression in adult cochleae. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying these changes have remained obscure. To better understand synapse formation and the role of cholinergic activity in the synaptogenesis of the inner ear, we exploit the nAChR alpha9 subunit null mouse. In this mouse, functional acetylcholine (ACh) neurotransmission to the hair cells is completely silenced. Results demonstrate a premature, effusive innervation to the synaptic pole of the outer hair cells in alpha9 null mice coinciding with delayed expression of cell adhesion proteins during the period of effusive contact. Collapse of the ectopic innervation coincides with an age-related hyperexpression pattern in the null mice. In addition, we document changes in expression of presynaptic vesicle recycling/trafficking machinery in the alpha9 null mice that suggests a bidirectional information flow between the target of the neural innervation (the hair cells) and the presynaptic terminal that is modified by hair cell nAChR activity. Loss of nAChR activity may alter transcriptional activity, as CREB binding protein expression is decreased coincident with the increased expression of N-Cadherin in the adult alpha9 null mice. Finally, by using mice expressing the nondesensitizing alpha9 L9'T point mutant nAChR subunit, we show that increased nAChR activity drives synaptic hyperinnervation.

  17. Differential α4(+)/(−)β2 Agonist-binding Site Contributions to α4β2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Function within and between Isoforms*

    PubMed Central

    Lucero, Linda M.; Weltzin, Maegan M.; Eaton, J. Brek; Cooper, John F.; Lindstrom, Jon M.; Lukas, Ronald J.; Whiteaker, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Two α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α4β2-nAChR) isoforms exist with (α4)2(β2)3 and (α4)3(β2)2 subunit stoichiometries and high versus low agonist sensitivities (HS and LS), respectively. Both isoforms contain a pair of α4(+)/(−)β2 agonist-binding sites. The LS isoform also contains a unique α4(+)/(−)α4 site with lower agonist affinity than the α4(+)/(−)β2 sites. However, the relative roles of the conserved α4(+)/(−)β2 agonist-binding sites in and between the isoforms have not been studied. We used a fully linked subunit concatemeric nAChR approach to express pure populations of HS or LS isoform α4β2*-nAChR. This approach also allowed us to mutate individual subunit interfaces, or combinations thereof, on each isoform background. We used this approach to systematically mutate a triplet of β2 subunit (−)-face E-loop residues to their non-conserved α4 subunit counterparts or vice versa (β2HQT and α4VFL, respectively). Mutant-nAChR constructs (and unmodified controls) were expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Acetylcholine concentration-response curves and maximum function were measured using two-electrode voltage clamp electrophysiology. Surface expression was measured with 125I-mAb 295 binding and was used to define function/nAChR. If the α4(+)/(−)β2 sites contribute equally to function, making identical β2HQT substitutions at either site should produce similar functional outcomes. Instead, highly differential outcomes within the HS isoform, and between the two isoforms, were observed. In contrast, α4VFL mutation effects were very similar in all positions of both isoforms. Our results indicate that the identity of subunits neighboring the otherwise equivalent α4(+)/(−)β2 agonist sites modifies their contributions to nAChR activation and that E-loop residues are an important contributor to this neighbor effect. PMID:26644472

  18. Differential α4(+)/(-)β2 Agonist-binding Site Contributions to α4β2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Function within and between Isoforms.

    PubMed

    Lucero, Linda M; Weltzin, Maegan M; Eaton, J Brek; Cooper, John F; Lindstrom, Jon M; Lukas, Ronald J; Whiteaker, Paul

    2016-01-29

    Two α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α4β2-nAChR) isoforms exist with (α4)2(β2)3 and (α4)3(β2)2 subunit stoichiometries and high versus low agonist sensitivities (HS and LS), respectively. Both isoforms contain a pair of α4(+)/(-)β2 agonist-binding sites. The LS isoform also contains a unique α4(+)/(-)α4 site with lower agonist affinity than the α4(+)/(-)β2 sites. However, the relative roles of the conserved α4(+)/(-)β2 agonist-binding sites in and between the isoforms have not been studied. We used a fully linked subunit concatemeric nAChR approach to express pure populations of HS or LS isoform α4β2*-nAChR. This approach also allowed us to mutate individual subunit interfaces, or combinations thereof, on each isoform background. We used this approach to systematically mutate a triplet of β2 subunit (-)-face E-loop residues to their non-conserved α4 subunit counterparts or vice versa (β2HQT and α4VFL, respectively). Mutant-nAChR constructs (and unmodified controls) were expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Acetylcholine concentration-response curves and maximum function were measured using two-electrode voltage clamp electrophysiology. Surface expression was measured with (125)I-mAb 295 binding and was used to define function/nAChR. If the α4(+)/(-)β2 sites contribute equally to function, making identical β2HQT substitutions at either site should produce similar functional outcomes. Instead, highly differential outcomes within the HS isoform, and between the two isoforms, were observed. In contrast, α4VFL mutation effects were very similar in all positions of both isoforms. Our results indicate that the identity of subunits neighboring the otherwise equivalent α4(+)/(-)β2 agonist sites modifies their contributions to nAChR activation and that E-loop residues are an important contributor to this neighbor effect.

  19. 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.

  20. Imaging of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in brain and cerebral vasculature of juvenile pigs with [18F]NS14490

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) is an important molecular target in neuropsychiatry and oncology. Development of applicable highly specific radiotracers has been challenging due to comparably low protein expression. To identify novel ligands as candidates for positron emission tomography (PET), a library of diazabicyclononane compounds was screened regarding affinity and specificity towards α7 nAChRs. From these, [18F]NS14490 has been shown to yield reliable results in organ distribution studies; however, the radiosynthesis of [18F]NS14490 required optimization and automation to obtain the radiotracer in quantities allowing dynamic PET studies in piglets. Methods Automated radiosynthesis of [18F]NS14490 has been performed by [18F]fluorination with the tosylate precursor in the TRACERlab™ FX F-N synthesis module (Waukesha, WI, USA). After optimization, the radiochemical yield of [18F]NS14490 was consistently approximately 35%, and the total synthesis time was about 90 min. The radiotracer was prepared with >92% radiochemical purity, and the specific activity at the end of the synthesis was 226 ± 68 GBq μmol−1. PET measurements were performed in young pigs to investigate the metabolic stability and cerebral binding of [18F]NS14490 without and with administration of the α7 nAChR partial agonist NS6740 in baseline and blocking conditions. Results The total distribution volume relative to the metabolite-corrected arterial input was 3.5 to 4.0 mL g−1 throughout the telencephalon and was reduced to 2.6 mL g−1 in animals treated with NS6740. Assuming complete blockade, this displacement indicated a binding potential (BPND) of approximately 0.5 in the brain of living pigs. In addition, evidence for specific binding in major brain arteries has been obtained. Conclusion [18F]NS14490 is not only comparable to other preclinically investigated PET radiotracers for imaging of α7 nAChR in brain but also could be a potential PET

  1. Bimodal concentration-response of nicotine involves the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1, and transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 channels in mouse trachea and sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Kichko, Tatjana I; Lennerz, Jochen; Eberhardt, Mirjam; Babes, Ramona M; Neuhuber, Winfried; Kobal, Gerd; Reeh, Peter W

    2013-11-01

    High concentrations of nicotine, as in the saliva of oral tobacco consumers or in smoking cessation aids, have been shown to sensitize/activate recombinant transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (rTRPV1) and mouse TRPA1 (mTRPA1) channels. By measuring stimulated calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) release from the isolated mouse trachea, we established a bimodal concentration-response relationship with a threshold below 10 µM (-)-nicotine, a maximum at 100 µM, an apparent nadir between 0.5 and 10 mM, and a renewed increase at 20 mM. The first peak was unchanged in TRPV1/A1 double-null mutants as compared with wild-types and was abolished by specific nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) inhibitors and by camphor, discovered to act as nicotinic antagonist. The nicotine response at 20 mM was strongly pHe-dependent, - five times greater at pH 9.0 than 7.4, indicating that intracellular permeation of the (uncharged) alkaloid was required to reach the TRPV1/A1 binding sites. The response was strongly reduced in both null mutants, and more so in double-null mutants. Upon measuring calcium transients in nodose/jugular and dorsal root ganglion neurons in response to 100 µM nicotine, 48% of the vagal (but only 14% of the somatic) sensory neurons were activated, the latter very weakly. However, nicotine 20 mM at pH 9.0 repeatedly activated almost every single cultured neuron, partly by releasing intracellular calcium and independent of TRPV1/A1 and nAChRs. In conclusion, in mouse tracheal sensory nerves nAChRs are 200-fold more sensitive to nicotine than TRPV1/A1; they are widely coexpressed with the capsaicin receptor among vagal sensory neurons and twice as abundant as TRPA1. Nicotine is the major stimulant in tobacco, and its sensory impact through nAChRs should not be disregarded.

  2. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor partial agonist varenicline increases the ataxic and sedative-hypnotic effects of acute ethanol administration in C57BL/6J mice

    PubMed Central

    Kamens, Helen M.; Andersen, Jimena; Picciotto, Marina R.

    2010-01-01

    Background The costs associated with alcohol abuse are staggering, therefore much effort has been put into developing new pharmacological strategies to decrease alcohol abuse. Recently, the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) partial agonist varenicline has been shown to decrease ethanol consumption in both humans and animal models. Methods We examined the effects of varenicline on the ataxic and sedative-hypnotic effects of ethanol. First, varenicline was administered prior to placement in a locomotor activity chamber to determine if varenicline influenced baseline locomotor activity. To determine the effect of nicotinic modulation on ethanol-induced motor incoordination, varenicline was administered 30 min prior to an acute ethanol injection and then mice were tested on the balance beam, dowel test or fixed-speed rotarod. To examine ethanol's sedative-hypnotic effects, varenicline was administered 30 min prior to 4 g/kg ethanol and the duration of loss of righting reflex (LORR) was measured. Results Varenicline markedly reduced baseline locomotor activity in C57BL/6J mice. Varenicline increased ethanol-induced ataxia when measured on the balance beam and dowel test, but had no effect when measured on the fixed-speed rotarod. Pretreatment with varenicline increased the duration of LORR. Conclusions These data provide evidence that nAChRs may be involved in the ataxic and sedative effects of ethanol. It is possible that one mechanism which could contribute to the ability of varenicline to decrease ethanol consumption may be through increasing negative behavioral effects of alcohol. PMID:20946306

  3. Mis-Spliced Transcripts of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor α6 Are Associated with Field Evolved Spinosad Resistance in Plutella xylostella (L.)

    PubMed Central

    Baxter, Simon W.; Chen, Mao; Dawson, Anna; Zhao, Jian-Zhou; Vogel, Heiko; Shelton, Anthony M.; Heckel, David G.; Jiggins, Chris D.

    2010-01-01

    The evolution of insecticide resistance is a global constraint to agricultural production. Spinosad is a new, low-environmental-risk insecticide that primarily targets nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) and is effective against a wide range of pest species. However, after only a few years of application, field evolved resistance emerged in the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella, an important pest of brassica crops worldwide. Spinosad resistance in a Hawaiian population results from a single incompletely recessive and autosomal gene, and here we use AFLP linkage mapping to identify the chromosome controlling resistance in a backcross family. Recombinational mapping with more than 700 backcross progeny positioned a putative spinosad target, nAChR alpha 6 (Pxα6), at the resistance locus, PxSpinR. A mutation within the ninth intron splice junction of Pxα6 results in mis-splicing of transcripts, which produce a predicted protein truncated between the third and fourth transmembrane domains. Additional resistance-associated Pxα6 transcripts that excluded the mutation containing exon were detected, and these were also predicted to produce truncated proteins. Identification of the locus of resistance in this important crop pest will facilitate field monitoring of the spread of resistance and offer insights into the genetic basis of spinosad resistance in other species. PMID:20062520

  4. Blocking actions of alkylene-tethered bis-neonicotinoids on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed by terminal abdominal ganglion neurons of Periplaneta americana.

    PubMed

    Ihara, Makoto; Hirata, Koichi; Ishida, Chiharu; Kagabu, Shinzo; Matsuda, Kazuhiko

    2007-10-02

    Neonicotinoid insecticides target nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), which, in both vertebrates and invertebrates, mediate fast-acting synaptic neurotransmission in the nervous system. Recently, Kagabu et al. synthesized bis-neonicotinoids. The neural activities of bis-neonicotinoids have been evaluated on the central nerve cord of American cockroaches. However, the action of bis-neonicotinoids on nAChRs expressed by dissociated insect neurons has not yet been studied. Thus, the actions of several alkylene-tethered bis-neonicotinoids on the terminal abdominal ganglion neurons of the American cockroach, Periplaneta americana, were investigated using whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology. All of the ligands tested did not induce membrane currents, but reduced the responses to ACh when bath applied prior to co-application with ACh. Of the compounds tested, HK-13, which possesses two imidacloprid units linked with a hexamethylene bridge, had the highest antagonist potency. The antagonist action was reduced, not only by elongating, but also by shortening the linker.

  5. High-affinity binding of (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine to muscarinic cholinergic receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Kellar, K.J.; Martino, A.M.; Hall, D.P. Jr.; Schwartz, R.D.; Taylor, R.L.

    1985-06-01

    High-affinity binding of (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine to muscarinic cholinergic sites in rat CNS and peripheral tissues was measured in the presence of cytisin, which occupies nicotinic cholinergic receptors. The muscarinic sites were characterized with regard to binding kinetics, pharmacology, anatomical distribution, and regulation by guanyl nucleotides. These binding sites have characteristics of high-affinity muscarinic cholinergic receptors with a Kd of approximately 30 nM. Most of the muscarinic agonist and antagonist drugs tested have high affinity for the (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine binding site, but pirenzepine, an antagonist which is selective for M-1 receptors, has relatively low affinity. The ratio of high-affinity (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine binding sites to total muscarinic binding sites labeled by (/sup 3/H)quinuclidinyl benzilate varies from 9 to 90% in different tissues, with the highest ratios in the pons, medulla, and heart atrium. In the presence of guanyl nucleotides, (/sup 3/H) acetylcholine binding is decreased, but the extent of decrease varies from 40 to 90% in different tissues, with the largest decreases being found in the pons, medulla, cerebellum, and heart atrium. The results indicate that (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine binds to high-affinity M-1 and M-2 muscarinic receptors, and they suggest that most M-2 sites have high affinity for acetylcholine but that only a small fraction of M-1 sites have such high affinity.

  6. Ligand binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptor investigated by surface plasmon resonance.

    PubMed

    Kröger, D; Hucho, F; Vogel, H

    1999-08-01

    Ligand binding to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor is studied by surface plasmon resonance. Biotinylated bungarotoxin, immobilized on a streptavidin-coated gold film, binds nicotinic acetylcholine receptor both in detergent-solubilized and in lipid vesicle-reconstituted form with high specificity. In the latter case, nonspecific binding to the sensor surface is significantly reduced by reconstituting the receptor into poly(ethylene glycol)-lipid-containing sterically stabilized vesicles. By preincubation of a bulk nicotinic acetylcholine receptor sample with the competing ligands carbamoylcholine and decamethonium bromide, the subsequent specific binding of the receptor to the surface-immobilized bungarotoxin is reduced, depending on the concentration of competing ligand. This competition assay allows the determination of the dissociation constants of the acetylcholine receptor-carbamoylcholine complex. A K(D) = 3.5 × 10(-)(6) M for the detergent-solubilized receptor and a K(D) = 1.4 × 10(-)(5) M for the lipid vesicle-reconstituted receptor are obtained. For decamethonium bromide, a K(D) = 4.5 × 10(-)(5) M is determined for the detergent-solubilized receptor. This approach is of general importance for investigating ligand-receptor interactions in case of small ligand molecules by mass-sensitive techniques.

  7. Weight of evidence evaluation of a network of adverse outcome pathways linking activation of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in honey bees to colony death.

    PubMed

    LaLone, Carlie A; Villeneuve, Daniel L; Wu-Smart, Judy; Milsk, Rebecca Y; Sappington, Keith; Garber, Kristina V; Housenger, Justin; Ankley, Gerald T

    2017-04-15

    Ongoing honey bee (Apis mellifera) colony losses are of signi