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Sample records for acetylcholine receptors achrs

  1. 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

  2. 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'.

  3. 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

  4. Functional characterization of mongoose nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha-subunit: resistance to alpha-bungarotoxin and high sensitivity to acetylcholine.

    PubMed

    Asher, O; Lupu-Meiri, M; Jensen, B S; Paperna, T; Fuchs, S; Oron, Y

    1998-07-24

    The mongoose is resistant to snake neurotoxins. The mongoose muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) alpha-subunit contains a number of mutations in the ligand-binding domain and exhibits poor binding of alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BTX). We characterized the functional properties of a hybrid (alpha-mongoose/beta gamma delta-rat) AChR. Hybrid AChRs, expressed in Xenopus oocytes, respond to acetylcholine with depolarizing current, the mean maximal amplitude of which was greater than that mediated by the rat AChR. The IC50 of alpha-BTX to the hybrid AChR was 200-fold greater than that of the rat, suggesting much lower affinity for the toxin. Hybrid AChRs exhibited an apparent higher rate of desensitization and higher affinity for ACh (EC50 1.3 vs. 23.3 microM for the rat AChR). Hence, changes in the ligand-binding domain of AChR not only affect the binding properties of the receptor, but also result in marked changes in the characteristics of the current.

  5. 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.

  6. Cooperation between the products of different nuclei in hybrid myotubes produces localized acetylcholine receptor clusters.

    PubMed Central

    Gordon, H; Ralston, E; Hall, Z W

    1992-01-01

    Cultured myotubes form clusters of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) spontaneously and at sites of nerve-muscle contact. To investigate the cellular mechanisms by which spontaneous clusters are formed, we have made hybrid myotubes between a mouse muscle cell variant, S27, that does not cluster AChRs, and one that does not make AChRs. We have also made hybrid myotubes using S27 and quail muscle cells. In both cases, clusters of AChRs were found near the non-S27 nuclei; in the case of the interspecific hybrids, mouse AChRs were associated with extracellular matrix components contributed by the quail nuclei. Our results suggest that AChRs made by one nucleus can be clustered by localized extracellular matrix produced by a different nucleus and provide an example of nuclear cooperation between the products of different nuclei within multinucleated muscle fibers. Images PMID:1631161

  7. 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

  8. Modulation of the anti-acetylcholine receptor response and experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis by recombinant fragments of the acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Barchan, D; Asher, O; Tzartos, S J; Fuchs, S; Souroujon, M C

    1998-02-01

    Myasthenia gravis (MG) is a neuromuscular disorder of man caused by a humoral response to the acetylcholine receptor (AChR). Most of the antibodies in MG and in experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG) are directed to the extracellular portion of the AChR alpha subunit, and within it, primarily to the main immunogenic region (MIR). We have cloned and expressed recombinant fragments, corresponding to the entire extracellular domain of the AChR alpha subunit (H alpha1-210), and to portions of it that encompass either the MIR (H alpha1-121) or the ligand binding site of AChR (H alpha122-210), and studied their ability to interfere with the immunopathological anti-AChR response in vitro and in vivo. All fragments were expressed as fusion proteins with glutathione S-transferase. Fragments H alpha1-121 and H alpha1-210 protected AChR in TE671 cells against accelerated degradation induced by the anti-MIR monoclonal antibody (mAb)198 in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, these fragments had a similar effect on the antigenic modulation of AChR by other anti-MIR mAb and by polyclonal rat anti-AChR antibodies. Fragments H alpha1-121 and H alpha1-210 were also able to modulate in vivo muscle AChR loss and development of clinical symptoms of EAMG, passively transferred to rats by mAb 198. Fragment H alpha122-210 did not have such a protective activity. Our results suggest that the appropriate recombinant fragments of the human AChR may be employed in the future for antigen-specific therapy of myasthenia.

  9. Mutations of Cytosolic Loop Residues Impair Assembly and Maturation of α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Mukherjee, Jayanta; Kuryatov, Alexander; Moss, Stephen J.; Lindstrom, Jon M.; Anand, Rene

    2009-01-01

    Mechanisms that regulate early events in the biogenesis of the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7 AChR) are not well understood. Data presented here show that single amino acid mutations in the cytoplasmic loop of the α7 AChR, between position 335 and 343, abolish or attenuate expression of mature pentameric α7 AChRs in both human embryonic kidney tsA201 (HEK) and neuronal SH-SY5Y cells. Although the number of mature α7 AChRs is increased significantly in the presence of the chaperone protein RIC-3 in HEK cells, sucrose gradient sedimentation reveals that the vast majority of α7 subunits are aggregated or improperly assembled. Transfection of α7 AChRs in SH-SY5Y cells, which endogenously express the α7 AChR, results in a much larger fraction of subunits assembled into mature AChRs. Thus, efficient assembly of α7 AChRs is influenced by several regions of the large cytoplasmic domain, as well perhaps by other parts of its structure, and requires as yet unknown factors not required by other AChR subtypes. PMID:19627445

  10. Synthetic. cap alpha. subunit peptide 125-147 of human nicotinic acetylcholine receptor induces antibodies to native receptor

    SciTech Connect

    McCormick, D.J.; Griesmann, G.E.; Huang, Z.; Lennon, V.A.

    1986-03-05

    A synthetic peptide corresponding to residues 125-147 of the Torpedo acetylcholine receptor (AChR) ..cap alpha.. subunit proved to be a major antigenic region of the AChR. Rats inoculated with 50 ..mu..g of peptide (T ..cap alpha.. 125-147) developed T cell immunity and antibodies to native AChR and signs of experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis. They report the synthesis and preliminary testing of a disulfide-looped peptide comprising residues 125-147 of the human AChR ..cap alpha.. subunit. Peptide H ..cap alpha.. 125-147 differs from T ..cap alpha.. 125-147 at residues 139 (Glu for Gln) and 143 (Ser for Thr). In immunoprecipitation assays, antibodies to Torpedo AChR bound /sup 125/I-labelled H..cap alpha.. 125-147 antibody bound H..cap alpha.. 125-147, but monoclonal antibodies to an immunodominant region of native AChR bound neither H..cap alpha.. 125-147 nor T ..cap alpha.. 125-147. Rats immunized with H ..cap alpha.. 125-147 produced anti-mammalian muscle AChR antibodies that induced modulation of AChRs from cultured human myotubes. Thus, region 125-147 of the human AChR ..cap alpha.. subunit is extracellular in muscle, and is both antigenic and immunogenic. It remains to be determined whether or not autoantibodies to this region may in part cause the weakness or myasthenia gravis in man.

  11. Immunological studies on the structure and function of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in mammalian muscle

    SciTech Connect

    Gu, Y.

    1989-01-01

    The specificity of the antibodies in the serum of a patient with myasthenia gravis for a the {alpha}-bungarotoxin binding sites of the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) was examined using AChRs in the C2 mouse muscle cell line as a model. The antibodies were shown to be specific for one of the two toxin-binding sites. The effect of the antibodies in this myasthenic serum on the functional response of the receptor to cholinergic agonists was also examined using carbamylcholine-induced {sup 22}Na uptake into C2 myotubes as a measured of the receptor function. Antibodies specific for the {gamma}, {delta}, and {epsilon} subunit, respectively, of mammalian muscle AChRs were developed using subunit-specific synthetic peptides as antigens. Using these antibodies and monoclonal antibodies for other subunits as probes, I have identified four ({alpha}, {beta}, {gamma}, and {delta}) subunits of mammalian muscle AChRs on immunoblots. When AChRs from embryonic, neonatal, normal and denervated adult muscles were compared on immunoblots, the {alpha}, {beta}, and {delta} subunits were identical in all four receptor preparations, with or without endoglycosidase digestion. The spatial and temporal distribution of the {gamma}- and {epsilon}- AChRs in developing and in denervated muscles corresponds to the distribution of AChRs with slow and fast channels, respectively, and that the development changes in the channel properties of the receptor arise from a change in the subunit composition of the receptor, in which the {gamma} is replaced by {epsilon}.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-05-01

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

  13. Steroids induce acetylcholine receptors on cultured human muscle: implications for myasthenia gravis.

    PubMed Central

    Kaplan, I; Blakely, B T; Pavlath, G K; Travis, M; Blau, H M

    1990-01-01

    Antibodies to the acetylcholine receptor (AChR), which are diagnostic of the human autoimmune disease myasthenia gravis, block AChR function and increase the rate of AChR degradation leading to impaired neuromuscular transmission. Steroids are frequently used to alleviate symptoms of muscle fatigue and weakness in patients with myasthenia gravis because of their well-documented immunosuppressive effects. We show here that the steroid dexamethasone significantly increases total surface AChRs on cultured human muscle exposed to myasthenia gravis sera. Our results suggest that the clinical improvement observed in myasthenic patients treated with steroids is due not only to an effect on the immune system but also to a direct effect on muscle. We propose that the identification and development of pharmacologic agents that augment receptors and other proteins that are reduced by human genetic or autoimmune disease will have broad therapeutic applications. Images PMID:2236023

  14. Steroids induce acetylcholine receptors on cultured human muscle: Implications for myasthenia gravis

    SciTech Connect

    Kaplan, I.; Blakely, B.T.; Pavlath, G.K.; Travis, M.; Blau, H.M. )

    1990-10-01

    Antibodies to the acetylcholine receptor (AChR), which are diagnostic of the human autoimmune disease myasthenia gravis, block AChR function and increase the rate of AChR degradation leading to impaired neuromuscular transmission. Steroids are frequently used to alleviate symptoms of muscle fatigue and weakness in patients with myasthenia gravis because of their well-documented immunosuppressive effects. The authors show here that the steroid dexamethasone significantly increases total surface AChRs on cultured human muscle exposed to myasthenia gravis sera. The results suggest that the clinical improvement observed in myasthenic patients treated with steroids is due not only to an effect on the immune system but also a direct effect on muscle. They propose that the identification and development of pharmacologic agents that augment receptors and other proteins that are reduced by human genetic or autoimmune disease will have broad therapeutic applications.

  15. Effects of the α subunit on imidacloprid sensitivity of recombinant nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Matsuda, K; Buckingham, S D; Freeman, J C; Squire, M D; Baylis, H A; Sattelle, D B

    1998-01-01

    Imidacloprid is a new insecticide with selective toxicity for insects over vertebrates. Recombinant (α4β2) chicken neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) and a hybrid nicotinic AChR formed by co-expression of a Drosophila melanogaster neuronal α subunit (SAD) with the chicken β2 subunit were heterologously expressed in Xenopus oocytes by nuclear injection of cDNAs. The agonist actions of imidacloprid and other nicotinic AChR ligands ((+)-epibatidine, (−)-nicotine and acetylcholine) were compared on both recombinant nicotinic AChRs by use of two-electrode, voltage-clamp electrophysiology. Imidacloprid alone of the 4 agonists behaved as a partial agonist on the α4β2 receptor; (+)-epibatidine, (−)-nicotine and acetylcholine were all full, or near full, agonists. Imidacloprid was also a partial agonist of the hybrid Drosophila SAD chicken β2 receptor, as was (−)-nicotine, whereas (+)-epibatidine and acetylcholine were full agonists. The EC50 of imidacloprid was decreased by replacing the chicken α4 subunit with the Drosophila SAD α subunit. This α subunit substitution also resulted in an increase in the EC50 for (+)-epibatidine, (−)-nicotine and acetylcholine. Thus, the Drosophila (SAD) α subunit contributes to the greater apparent affinity of imidacloprid for recombinant insect/vertebrate nicotinic AChRs. Imidacloprid acted as a weak antagonist of ACh-mediated responses mediated by SADβ2 hybrid receptors and as a weak potentiator of ACh responses mediated by α4β2 receptors. This suggests that imidacloprid has complex effects upon these recombinant receptors, determined at least in part by the α subunit. PMID:9504393

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Caffeine and nicotine decrease acetylcholine receptor clustering in C2C12 myotube culture.

    PubMed

    Kordosky-Herrera, Kaia; Grow, Wade A

    2009-02-01

    As motor neurons approach skeletal muscle during development, agrin is released and induces acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clustering. Our laboratory investigates the effect of environmental agents on skeletal muscle development by using C2C12 cell culture. For the current project, we investigated both short-term and long-term exposure to caffeine, nicotine, or both, at physiologically relevant concentrations. Short-term exposure was limited to the last 48 h of myotube formation, whereas a long-term exposure of 2 weeks allowed for several generations of myoblast proliferation followed by myotube formation. Both agrin-induced and spontaneous AChR clustering frequencies were assessed. For agrin-induced AChR clustering, agrin was added for the last 16 h of myotube formation. Caffeine, nicotine, or both significantly decreased agrin-induced AChR clustering during short-term and long-term exposure. Furthermore, caffeine, nicotine, or both significantly decreased spontaneous AChR clustering during long-term, but not short-term exposure. Surprisingly, caffeine and nicotine in combination did not decrease AChR clustering beyond the effect of either treatment alone. We conclude that physiologically relevant concentrations of caffeine or nicotine decrease AChR clustering. Moreover, we predict that fetuses exposed to caffeine or nicotine may be less likely to form appropriate neuromuscular synapses.

  19. Analysis and modulation of the immune response of mice to acetylcholine receptor by anti-idiotypes.

    PubMed

    Souroujon, M C; Barchan, D; Fuchs, S

    1985-01-01

    Anti-idiotypes were raised in mice against three well-characterized anti-acetylcholine receptor (AChR) monoclonal antibodies (mcAbs), as well as against polyclonal mouse anti-AChR antibodies. In binding experiments, the anti-idiotypic antibodies inhibited the binding of AChR only to the immunizing idiotype. However, a less restricted specificity was found in in vivo experiments. Mice producing anti-idiotypes were challenged with AChR and the idiotypic composition of their anti-AChR response was analysed using specific rabbit anti-idiotypic antibodies. It was found that preimmunization with a certain idiotype leads to the preferential suppression of this particular idiotype in the polyclonal response to AChR. However, preimmunization with either polyclonal or monoclonal anti-AChR antibodies resulted in a reduction of the overall anti-Torpedo AChR and anti-muscle AChR titers. This reduction was greater than would be expected from the representation of each of the respective idiotypes in the polyclonal anti-AChR serum, and may imply that in addition to the immunizing idiotype other anti-AChR idiotypes are also suppressed. Our results suggest that anti-idiotypes may have a potential for the modulation of the autoimmune response directed against AChR in myasthenia.

  20. Acetylcholine receptor alpha-subunit and myogenin mRNAs in thymus and thymomas.

    PubMed Central

    Kornstein, M. J.; Asher, O.; Fuchs, S.

    1995-01-01

    Myasthenia gravis is an autoimmune disorder characterized in most cases by serological antibody against the acetylcholine receptor (AChR). Evidence for intrathymic localization of AChR suggests that the thymus has an important role in the pathogenesis of this disorder. Using reverse transcription followed by the polymerase chain reaction, we have demonstrated AChR alpha-subunit mRNA in thymuses and thymomas from patients with and without myasthenia gravis. We have also studied the expression of myogenin which is known to be involved in the regulation of AChR expression. By using the reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, we found myogenin mRNAs in all of the thymuses and thymomas. Thus, both AChR alpha-subunit and myogenin mRNA are present in all of these specimens. By immunohistochemistry myoid cells (desmin and myoglobin positive) were present in all (four of four) thymuses studied and in two of five thymomas. Thus, in thymomas, nonmyoid cells might express both AChR and myogenin. These results indicate that cells within the thymus and thymoma express AChR and its regulatory protein myogenin and that such cells, under certain conditions, might play a role in the triggering of myasthenia gravis. Images Figure 2 Figure 3 PMID:7778671

  1. Antibody-Induced Acetylcholine Receptor Clusters Inhabit Liquid-Ordered and Liquid-Disordered Domains

    PubMed Central

    Kamerbeek, Constanza B.; Borroni, Virginia; Pediconi, María F.; Sato, Satoshi B.; Kobayashi, Toshihide; Barrantes, Francisco J.

    2013-01-01

    The distribution of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clusters at the cell membrane was studied in CHO-K1/A5 cells using fluorescence microscopy. Di-4-ANEPPDHQ, a fluorescent probe that differentiates between liquid-ordered (Lo) and liquid-disordered (Ld) phases in model membranes, was used in combination with monoclonal anti-AChR antibody labeling of live cells, which induces AChR clustering. The so-called generalized polarization (GP) of di-4-ANEPPDHQ was measured in regions of the cell-surface membrane associated with or devoid of antibody-induced AChR clusters, respectively. AChR clusters were almost equally distributed between Lo and Ld domains, independently of receptor surface levels and agonist (carbamoylcholine and nicotine) or antagonist (α-bungarotoxin) binding. Cholesterol depletion diminished the cell membrane mean di-4-ANEPPDHQ GP and the number of AChR clusters associated with Ld membrane domains increased concomitantly. Depolymerization of the filamentous actin cytoskeleton by Latrunculin A had the opposite effect, with more AChR clusters associated with Lo domains. AChR internalized via small vesicles having lower GP and lower cholesterol content than the surface membrane. Upon cholesterol depletion, only 12% of the AChR-containing vesicles costained with the fluorescent cholesterol analog fPEG-cholesterol, i.e., AChR endocytosis was essentially dissociated from that of cholesterol. In conclusion, the distribution of AChR submicron-sized clusters at the cell membrane appears to be regulated by cholesterol content and cytoskeleton integrity. PMID:24094401

  2. Induction of phosphorylation and cell surface redistribution of acetylcholine receptors by phorbol ester and carbamylcholine in cultured chick muscle cells

    PubMed Central

    1988-01-01

    We have investigated the mechanisms regulating the clustering of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) on the surface of cultured embryonic chick muscle cells. Treatment of these cells with the phorbol ester 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA), a potent activator of protein kinase C, was found to cause a rapid dispersal of AChR clusters, as monitored by fluorescence microscopy of cells labeled with tetramethylrhodamine-conjugated alpha-bungarotoxin. The loss of AChR clusters was not accompanied by an appreciable change in the amount of AChR on the surface of these cells, as measured by the specific binding of [125I]Bgt. Analysis of the phosphorylation pattern of immunoprecipitable AChR subunits showed that the gamma- and delta- subunits are phosphorylated by endogenous protein kinase activity in the intact muscle cells, and that the delta-subunit displays increased phosphorylation in response to TPA. Structural analogues of TPA which do not stimulate protein kinase C have no effect on AChR surface topography or phosphorylation. Exposure of chick myotubes to the cholinergic agonist carbamylcholine was found to cause a dispersal of AChR clusters with a time course similar to that of TPA. Like TPA, carbamylcholine enhances the phosphorylation of the delta-subunit of AChR. The carbamylcholine-induced redistribution and phosphorylation of AChR is blocked by the nicotinic AChR antagonist d-tubocurarine. TPA and carbamylcholine have no effect on cell morphology during the time- course of these experiments. These findings indicate that cell surface topography of AChR may be regulated by phosphorylation of its subunits and suggest a mechanism for dispersal of AChR clusters by agonist activation. PMID:3417778

  3. Disruption and reformation of the acetylcholine receptor clusters of cultured rat myotubes occur in two distinct stages.

    PubMed

    Pumplin, D W; Bloch, R J

    1987-01-01

    We have examined the redistribution of acetylcholine receptor (AChR) intramembrane particles (IMPs) when AChR clusters of cultured rat myotubes are experimentally disrupted and allowed to reform. In control myotubes, the AChR IMPs are evenly distributed within the AChR domains of cluster membrane. Shortly after addition of azide to disrupt clusters, IMPs become unevenly scattered, with some microaggregation. After longer treatment, IMPs are depleted from AChR domains with no further change in IMP distribution. Contact domains of clusters are relatively poor in IMPs both before and after cluster dispersal. Upon visualization with fluorescent alpha-bungarotoxin, some AChR in azide-treated samples appear as small, bright spots. These spots do not correspond to microaggregates seen in freeze-fracture replicas, and probably represent receptors that have been internalized. The internalization rate is insufficient to account completely for the loss of IMPs from clusters, however. During reformation of AChR clusters upon removal of azide, IMP concentration in receptor domains increases. At early stages of reformation, IMPs appear in small groups containing compact microaggregates. At later times, AChR domains enlarge and IMPs within them assume the evenly spaced distribution characteristic of control clusters. These observations suggest that the disruption of clusters is accompanied by mobilization of AChR from a fixed array, allowing AChR IMPs to diffuse away from the clusters, to form microaggregates, and to become internalized. Cluster reformation appears to be the reverse of this process. Our results are thus consistent with a two-step model for AChR clustering, in which the concentration of IMPs into a small membrane region precedes their rearrangement into evenly spaced sites.

  4. Expression of a Drosophila melanogaster acetylcholine receptor-related gene in the central nervous system

    SciTech Connect

    Wadsworth, S.C.; Rosenthal, L.S.; Kammermeyer, K.L.; Potter, M.B.; Nelson, D.J.

    1988-02-01

    The authors isolated Drosophila melanogaster genomic sequences with nucleotide and amino acid sequence homology to subunits of vertebrate acetylcholine receptor by hybridization with a Torpedo acetylcholine receptor subunit cDNA probe. Five introns are present in the portion of the Drosophila gene encoding the unprocessed protein and are positionally conserved relative to the human acetylcholine receptor alpha-subunit gene. The Drosophila genomic clone hybridized to salivary gland polytene chromosome 3L within region 64B and was termed AChR64B. A 3-kilobasae poly(A)-containing transcript complementary to the AChR64B clone was readily detectable by RNA blot hybridizations during midembryogenesis, during metamorphosis, and in newly enclosed adults. AChR64B transcripts were localized to the cellular regions of the central nervous system during embryonic, larval, pupal, and adult stages of development. During metamorphosis, a temporal relationship between the morphogenesis of the optic lobe and expression of AChR64B transcripts was observed.

  5. Vector-averaged gravity does not alter acetylcholine receptor single channel properties

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reitstetter, R.; Gruener, R.

    1994-01-01

    To examine the physiological sensitivity of membrane receptors to altered gravity, we examined the single channel properties of the acetylcholine receptor (AChR), in co-cultures of Xenopus myocytes and neurons, to vector-averaged gravity in the clinostat. This experimental paradigm produces an environment in which, from the cell's perspective, the gravitational vector is "nulled" by continuous averaging. In that respect, the clinostat simulates one aspect of space microgravity where the gravity force is greatly reduced. After clinorotation, the AChR channel mean open-time and conductance were statistically not different from control values but showed a rotation-dependent trend that suggests a process of cellular adaptation to clinorotation. These findings therefore suggest that the ACHR channel function may not be affected in the microgravity of space despite changes in the receptor's cellular organization.

  6. Role of calcium in the regulation of acetylcholine receptor synthese in cultured muscle cells*.

    PubMed

    Birnbaum, M; Reis, M A; Shainberg, A

    1980-05-01

    Embroyonic muscles differentiated in vitro were used to study the effects of intracellular Ca2+ ([Ca2+1]i) variations on the amount of acetylcholine receptors ([AChR]) in the cell membrane. 2. Increased Ca2+ concentration in the growth medium ([Ca2+]o) caused a marked elevation of AChR levels, apparently through de novo synthesis. 3. Agents known to increase [Ca2+]i and its accumulation in the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR), such as ionophore A23187, sodium dantrolene (DaNa), or high [Mg2+]o all enhanced alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BGT) binding after 48 h of treatment. 4. Electrical stimulation or caffeine, both affectors of SR calcium release, brought about a decrease in [AChR] probably by suppressing its synthesis. 5. The effects of simultaneous treatment with two AChR-inducing agents, namely, high [Ca2+]o in the presence of tetrodotoxin (TTX) or high [Mg2+]o were not additive, thus suggesting action via a common saturable mediator. 6. Intermediate AChR levels obtained following simultaneous treatments with opposing effects, e.g., electrical stimulation in the presence of high [Ca2+]o or DaNa, suggest contradictory actions on a common mediator. 7. All these observations indicate a strong correlation between SR calcium levels and [AChR] on myotubes; while calcium accumulation in the Sr was followed by increased AChR synthesis, calcium release was accompanied by suppression of receptor synthesis.

  7. IgG1 antibodies to acetylcholine receptors in ‘seronegative’ myasthenia gravis†

    PubMed Central

    Leite, Maria Isabel; Jacob, Saiju; Viegas, Stuart; Cossins, Judy; Clover, Linda; Morgan, B. Paul; Beeson, David; Willcox, Nick

    2008-01-01

    Only around 80% of patients with generalized myasthenia gravis (MG) have serum antibodies to acetylcholine receptor [AChR; acetylcholine receptor antibody positive myasthenia gravis (AChR-MG)] by the radioimmunoprecipitation assay used worldwide. Antibodies to muscle specific kinase [MuSK; MuSK antibody positive myasthenia gravis (MuSK-MG)] make up a variable proportion of the remaining 20%. The patients with neither AChR nor MuSK antibodies are often called seronegative (seronegative MG, SNMG). There is accumulating evidence that SNMG patients are similar to AChR-MG in clinical features and thymic pathology. We hypothesized that SNMG patients have low-affinity antibodies to AChR that cannot be detected in solution phase assays, but would be detected by binding to the AChRs on the cell membrane, particularly if they were clustered at the high density that is found at the neuromuscular junction. We expressed recombinant AChR subunits with the clustering protein, rapsyn, in human embryonic kidney cells and tested for binding of antibodies by immunofluorescence. To identify AChRs, we tagged either AChR or rapsyn with enhanced green fluorescence protein, and visualized human antibodies with Alexa Fluor-labelled secondary or tertiary antibodies, or by fluorescence-activated cell sorter (FACS). We correlated the results with the thymic pathology where available. We detected AChR antibodies to rapsyn-clustered AChR in 66% (25/38) of sera previously negative for binding to AChR in solution and confirmed the results with FACS. The antibodies were mainly IgG1 subclass and showed ability to activate complement. In addition, there was a correlation between serum binding to clustered AChR and complement deposition on myoid cells in patients’ thymus tissue. A similar approach was used to demonstrate that MuSK antibodies, although mainly IgG4, were partially IgG1 subclass and capable of activating complement when bound to MuSK on the cell surface. These observations throw new

  8. The binding site of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in animal species resistant to alpha-bungarotoxin.

    PubMed

    Barchan, D; Ovadia, M; Kochva, E; Fuchs, S

    1995-07-18

    The ligand binding site of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) is located in the alpha-subunit, within a small fragment containing the tandem cysteines at positions 192 and 193. We have been analyzing the binding site domain of AChRs from several animal species exhibiting various degrees of resistance to alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BTX). Our earlier work on the snake and mongoose AChR, both of which do not bind alpha-BTX, suggested that amino acid substitutions at positions 187, 189, and 194 of the AChR alpha-subunit are important in determining the resistance of these AChRs to alpha-BTX. In the present study, we have examined the correlation between alpha-BTX binding and the structure of the binding site domain of AChR from the hedgehog, shrew, cat, and human. Fragments of the AChR alpha-subunit corresponding to residues 122-205 from these species were cloned, sequenced, and expressed in Escherichia coli. The hedgehog fragment does not bind alpha-BTX, in common with the snake and mongoose AChR, and the human fragment is a partial binder. The shrew and cat fragments bind alpha-BTX to a similar extent as the mouse fragment. The hedgehog and human AChRs have nonaromatic amino acid residues at positions 187 and 189 of the alpha-subunit, as is seen with the "toxin resistant" snake and mongoose, and in contrast with the "toxin binders", which have aromatic residues at these two positions.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  9. 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

  10. Dimeric arrangement and structure of the membrane-bound acetylcholine receptor studied by electron microscopy.

    PubMed Central

    Zingsheim, H P; Neugebauer, D C; Frank, J; Hänicke, W; Barrantes, F J

    1982-01-01

    The acetylcholine receptor protein (AChR) from the electric organ of Torpedo marmorata is studied in its membrane-bound form by electron microscopy and single-particle image averaging. About half the molecule protrudes from the membrane surface by approximately 5 nm. The low-resolution 3-D structure of this hydrated portion, including its handedness, can be deduced from averaged axial and lateral projections and from freeze-etched membrane surfaces. In native membrane fragments, a dimeric form of the AChR is observed and the relative orientation of the AChR monomers within the dimer is established. The dimers disappear upon disulfide reduction of the membrane preparations, whereas the average axial projections of the AChR monomer remain unaffected. Since the existence of disulfide bonds linking AChR monomers between their respective delta-subunits is well documented, the approximate position of the delta-subunit within the low-resolution structure of the AChR molecule can be deduced from the structure of the dimers. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 2. Fig. 3. PMID:7188351

  11. Identification of epitopes within a highly immunogenic region of acetylcholine receptor by a phage epitope library.

    PubMed

    Barchan, D; Balass, M; Souroujon, M C; Katchalski-Katzir, E; Fuchs, S

    1995-11-01

    We have employed a hexapeptide phage-epitope library to identify epitopes for a mAb (mAb 5.14), which is directed to a determinant within a highly immunogenic, cytoplasmic region of the alpha-subunit of acetylcholine receptor (AChR). We have selected two different peptide-presenting phages (SWDDIR-phage and LWILTR-phage) which interact specifically with mAb 5.14. This interaction is specifically inhibited by AChR and by synthetic peptides corresponding to the hexapeptides presented by the selected phages. Although mAb 5.14 binds to AChR in its native as well as its denatured form, the selected hexapeptides do not exist as such in the AChR molecule. However, three amino acid sequence homologies with these hexapeptides were shown to be present in the cytoplasmic region of Torpedo AChR. By extending the selected hexapeptides, at one or both ends, with amino acid residues flanking the hexapeptides in the phage, we obtained mimotopes with an up to two order of magnitude higher affinity to the Ab. These extended peptides were able to efficiently block the binding of mAb 5.14 to both peptide-presenting phages, and to AChR.

  12. Dispersal and reformation of acetylcholine receptor clusters of cultured rat myotubes treated with inhibitors of energy metabolism.

    PubMed

    Bloch, R J

    1979-09-01

    The effects of energy metabolism inhibitors on the distribution of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) in the surface membranes of non-innervated, cultured rat myotubes were studied by visualizing the AChRs with monotetramethylrhodamine-alpha-bungarotoxin. Incubation of myotubes with inhibitors of energy metabolism causes a large decrease in the fraction of myotubes displaying clusters of AChR. This decrease is reversible, and is dependent on temperature, the concentration of inhibitor, and the duration of treatment. Cluster dispersal is probably not the result of secondary effects on Ca++ or cyclic nucleotide metabolism, membrane potential, cytoskeletal elements, or protein synthesis. Sequential observations of identified cells treated with sodium azide showed that clusters appear to disperse by movements of receptors within the sarcolemma without accompanying changes in cell shape. AChR clusters dispersed by pretreating cells with sodium azide rapidly reform upon removal of the inhibitor. Reclustering involves the formation of small aggregates of AChR, which act as foci for further aggregation and which appear to be precursors of large AChR clusters. Small AChR aggregates also appear to be precursors of clusters which form on myotubes never exposed to azide. Reclustering after azide treatment does not necessarily occur at the same sites occupied by clusters before dispersal, nor does it employ only receptors which had previously been in clusters. Cluster reformation can be blocked by cycloheximide, colchicine, and drugs which alter the intracellular cation composition.

  13. Action of nereistoxin on recombinant neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Raymond Delpech, Valérie; Ihara, Makoto; Coddou, Claudio; Matsuda, Kazuhiko; Sattelle, David B

    2003-11-01

    Nereistoxin (NTX), a natural neurotoxin from the salivary glands of the marine annelid worm Lumbriconereis heteropoda, is highly toxic to insects. Its synthetic analogue, Cartap, was the first commercial insecticide based on a natural product. We have used voltage-clamp electrophysiology to compare the actions of NTX on recombinant nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nicotinic AChRs) expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes following nuclear injection of cDNAs. The recombinant nicotinic AChRs investigated were chicken alpha7, chicken alpha4beta2 and the Drosophila melanogaster/chicken hybrid receptors SAD/beta2 and ALS/beta2. No agonist action of NTX (0.1-100 microM) was observed on chicken alpha7, chicken alpha4beta2 and the Drosophila/chicken hybrid nicotinic AChRs. Currents elicited by ACh were reduced in amplitude by NTX in a dose-dependent manner. The toxin was slightly more potent on recombinant Drosophila/vertebrate hybrid receptors than on vertebrate homomeric (alpha7) or heteromeric (alpha4beta2) nicotinic AChRs. Block by NTX of the chicken alpha7, chicken alpha4beta2 and the SAD/beta2 and ALS/beta2 Drosophila/chicken hybrid receptors is in all cases non-competitive. Thus, the site of action on nicotinic AChRs of NTX, to which the insecticide Cartap is metabolised in insects, differs from that of the major nicotinic AChR-active insecticide, imidacloprid.

  14. Evidence from the anti-idiotypic network that the acetylcholine receptor is a rabies virus receptor.

    PubMed

    Hanham, C A; Zhao, F; Tignor, G H

    1993-01-01

    We have developed idiotype-anti-idiotype monoclonal antibodies that provide evidence for rabies virus binding to the acetylcholine receptor (AChR). Hybridoma cell lines 7.12 and 7.25 resulted after fusion of NS-1 myeloma cells with spleen cells from a BALB/c mouse immunized with rabies virus strain CVS. Antibody 7.12 reacted with viral glycoprotein and neutralized virus infectivity in vivo. It also neutralized infectivity in vitro when PC12 cells, which express neuronal AChR, but not CER cells or neuroblastoma cells (clone N18), which have no AChR, were used. Antibody 7.25 reacted with nucleocapsid protein. Anti-idiotypic monoclonal antibody B9 was produced from fusion of NS-1 cells with spleen cells from a mouse immunized with 7.12 Fab. In an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and immunoprecipitation, B9 reacted with 7.12, polyclonal rabies virus immune dog serum, and purified AChR. The binding of B9 to 7.12 and immune dog serum was inhibited by AChR. B9 also inhibited the binding of 7.12 to rabies virus both in vitro and in vivo. Indirect immunofluorescence revealed that B9 reacted at neuromuscular junctions of mouse tissue. B9 also reacted in indirect immunofluorescence with distinct neurons in mouse and monkey brain tissue as well as with PC12 cells. B9 staining of neuronal elements in brain tissue of rabies virus-infected mice was greatly reduced. Rabies virus inhibited the binding of B9 to PC12 cells. Mice immunized with B9 developed low-titer rabies virus-neutralizing antibody. These mice were protected from lethal intramuscular rabies virus challenge. In contrast, anti-idiotypic antibody raised against nucleocapsid antibody 7.25 did not react with AChR.

  15. Functional adult acetylcholine receptor develops independently of motor innervation in Sol 8 mouse muscle cell line.

    PubMed Central

    Pinset, C; Mulle, C; Benoit, P; Changeux, J P; Chelly, J; Gros, F; Montarras, D

    1991-01-01

    We have defined culture conditions, using a feeder layer of cells from the embryonic mesenchymal cell line, 10T1/2 and a serum-free medium, which allow cells from the mouse myogenic cell line Sol 8 to form contracting myotubes for two weeks. Under these culture conditions, Sol 8 myotubes undergo a maturation process characterized by a sequential expression of two phenotypes. An early phenotype is typified by the expression of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) gamma-subunit transcripts and the presence of low conductance ACh-activated channels, typical of embryonic AChR. A late phenotype is characterized by the expression of AChR epsilon-subunit transcripts, the decreased accumulation of gamma-subunit transcripts and the appearance of high conductance ACh-activated channels, typical of adult AChR. These results indicate that the expression of functional adult type AChR does not require the presence of the motor nerve and therefore represents an intrinsic feature of the Sol 8 muscle cells. Chronic exposure of the cells to the voltage-sensitive Na+ channel blocking agent tetrodotoxin does not affect the appearance of the AChR epsilon-subunit transcripts but prevents the reduction of the steady-state level of the AChR gamma-subunit transcripts and yields a reduced proportion of the adult type channels. Thus, activity seems to facilitate the switch from the embryonic to the adult phenotype of the AChR protein. The Sol 8 cell system might be useful to analyse further the genetic and epigenetic regulation of muscle fibre maturation in mammals. Images PMID:1868829

  16. Correlation between acetylcholine receptor antibody levels and thymic pathology in myasthenia gravis: a review.

    PubMed

    Huang, G Z; Lo, Y L

    2013-06-01

    Myasthenia gravis is the most common chronic autoimmune neuromuscular disease. Anti-acetylcholine receptor (AChR) antibodies are found in at least 80% of patients with generalized myasthenia and have been implicated in disease pathogenesis. Thymic abnormalities are frequently found in seropositive patients, and the thymus is thought to be involved in generation of autoimmunity. This article reviews existing literature on the role of AChR antibodies in the pathogenesis of myasthenia gravis, and the correlation between AChR antibody titers and thymic pathology. Most studies found that highest titers are seen in thymic hyperplasia, followed by intermediate titers in thymoma, and lowest titers in atrophic or normal thymus. One publication found no difference between titers in thymoma and normal thymus.

  17. The ligand binding domain of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Immunological analysis.

    PubMed

    Kachalsky, S G; Aladjem, M; Barchan, D; Fuchs, S

    1993-03-08

    The interaction of the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) binding site domain with specific antibodies and with alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BTX) has been compared. The cloned and expressed ligand binding domain of the mouse AChR alpha-subunit binds alpha-BTX, whereas the mongoose-expressed domain is not recognized by alpha-BTX. On the other hand, both the mouse and mongoose domains bind to the site-specific monoclonal antibody 5.5. These results demonstrate that the structural requirements for binding of alpha-BTX and mcAb 5.5, both of which interact with the AChR binding site, are distinct from each other.

  18. Computer modeling of the neurotoxin binding site of acetylcholine receptor spanning residues 185 through 196

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Garduno-Juarez, R.; Shibata, M.; Zielinski, T. J.; Rein, R.

    1987-01-01

    A model of the complex between the acetylcholine receptor and the snake neurotoxin, cobratoxin, was built by molecular model building and energy optimization techniques. The experimentally identified functionally important residues of cobratoxin and the dodecapeptide corresponding to the residues 185-196 of acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit were used to build the model. Both cis and trans conformers of cyclic L-cystine portion of the dodecapeptide were examined. Binding residues independently identified on cobratoxin are shown to interact with the dodecapeptide AChR model.

  19. 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

  20. Beta3 subunits promote expression and nicotine-induced up-regulation of human nicotinic alpha6* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed in transfected cell lines.

    PubMed

    Tumkosit, Prem; Kuryatov, Alexander; Luo, Jie; Lindstrom, Jon

    2006-10-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) containing alpha6 subunits are typically found at aminergic nerve endings where they play important roles in nicotine addiction and Parkinson's disease. alpha6* AChRs usually contain beta3 subunits. beta3 subunits are presumed to assemble only in the accessory subunit position within AChRs where they do not participate in forming acetylcholine binding sites. Assembly of subunits in the accessory position may be a critical final step in assembly of mature AChRs. Human alpha6 AChRs subtypes were permanently transfected into human tsA201 human embryonic kidney (HEK) cell lines. alpha6beta2beta3 and alpha6beta4beta3 cell lines were found to express much larger amounts of AChRs and were more sensitive to nicotine-induced increase in the amount of AChRs than were alpha6beta2 or alpha6beta4 cell lines. The increased sensitivity to nicotine-induced up-regulation was due not to a beta3-induced increase in affinity for nicotine but probably to a direct effect on assembly of AChR subunits. HEK cells express only a small amount of mature alpha6beta2 AChRs, but many of these subunits are on the cell surface. This contrasts with Xenopus laevis oocytes, which express a large amount of incorrectly assembled alpha6beta2 subunits that bind cholinergic ligands but form large amorphous intracellular aggregates. Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) were made to the alpha6 and beta3 subunits to aid in the characterization of these AChRs. The alpha6 mAbs bind to epitopes C-terminal of the extracellular domain. These data demonstrate that both cell type and the accessory subunit beta3 can play important roles in alpha6* AChR expression, stability, and up-regulation by nicotine.

  1. Number of junctional acetylcholine receptors: control by neural and muscular influences in the rat.

    PubMed Central

    Andreose, J S; Fumagalli, G; Lømo, T

    1995-01-01

    1. The number of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) per neuromuscular junction in soleus muscles of adult rats was estimated from counts of 125I-alpha-bungarotoxin binding sites. The muscles were either denervated, denervated and electrically stimulated, paralysed by botulinum toxin (BoTX), or paralysed by tetrodotoxin (TTX). 2. After denervation, the number of junctional AChRs was normal after 18 days and then fell to 54 and 35% of normal after 33 and 57 days, respectively. 3. Direct high frequency muscle stimulation (100 Hz) maintained a normal number of junctional AChRs for at least 2 months when the stimulation started on the day of denervation. When the stimulation was started progressively later, the effect of the stimulation on AChR number disappeared within about a week. The disappearance was gradual and appeared to affect all the muscle fibres equally. 4. Stimulation at 100 Hz, starting on the day of denervation and stopping after 18 days, did not prevent the endplates from losing AChRs during the subsequent 15 days without stimulation. Thus 100 Hz stimulation and innervation are not equivalent in their effects on junctional AChR number. 5. Direct low frequency muscle stimulation from the day of denervation did not maintain a normal number of junctional AChRs, as the number of AChRs fell to 70 and 62% of normal after 33 days of stimulation at 20 and 10 Hz, respectively. 6. Endplates paralysed by BoTX or TTX for 33 days lost about as many junctional AChRs (54 and 55%) as endplates denervated for 33 days (46%). Direct stimulation at 100 Hz during the last 15 days of BoTX treatment reduced but did not prevent this AChR loss (36% loss at 33 days). 7. The results show that when motor nerve terminals in rat soleus muscles are removed by axotomy, they leave a 'trace' which, in conjunction with appropriate muscle stimulation, can maintain a normal number of AChRs in the postsynaptic region. In non-stimulated muscles the trace responsible for this maintenance

  2. In vitro selection of RNA molecules that displace cocaine from the membrane-bound nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Ulrich, H; Ippolito, J E; Pagán, O R; Eterović, V A; Hann, R M; Shi, H; Lis, J T; Eldefrawi, M E; Hess, G P

    1998-11-24

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) controls signal transmission between cells in the nervous system. Abused drugs such as cocaine inhibit this receptor. Transient kinetic investigations indicate that inhibitors decrease the channel-opening equilibrium constant [Hess, G. P. & Grewer, C. (1998) Methods Enzymol. 291, 443-473]. Can compounds be found that compete with inhibitors for their binding site but do not change the channel-opening equilibrium? The systematic evolution of RNA ligands by exponential enrichment methodology and the AChR in Torpedo californica electroplax membranes were used to find RNAs that can displace inhibitors from the receptor. The selection of RNA ligands was carried out in two consecutive steps: (i) a gel-shift selection of high-affinity ligands bound to the AChR in the electroplax membrane, and (ii) subsequent use of nitrocellulose filters to which both the membrane-bound receptor and RNAs bind strongly, but from which the desired RNA can be displaced from the receptor by a high-affinity AChR inhibitor, phencyclidine. After nine selection rounds, two classes of RNA molecules that bind to the AChR with nanomolar affinities were isolated and sequenced. Both classes of RNA molecules are displaced by phencyclidine and cocaine from their binding site on the AChR. Class I molecules are potent inhibitors of AChR activity in BC3H1 muscle cells, as determined by using the whole-cell current-recording technique. Class II molecules, although competing with AChR inhibitors, do not affect receptor activity in this assay; such compounds or derivatives may be useful for alleviating the toxicity experienced by millions of addicts.

  3. 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.

  4. Identification of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor recycling and its role in maintaining receptor density at the neuromuscular junction in vivo.

    PubMed

    Bruneau, Emile; Sutter, David; Hume, Richard I; Akaaboune, Mohammed

    2005-10-26

    In the CNS, receptor recycling is critical for synaptic plasticity; however, the recycling of receptors has never been observed at peripheral synapses. Using a novel imaging technique, we show here that nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) recycle into the postsynaptic membrane of the neuromuscular junction. By sequentially labeling AChRs with biotin-bungarotoxin and streptavidin-fluorophore conjugates, we were able to distinguish recycled, preexisting, and new receptor pools at synapses in living mice. Time-lapse imaging revealed that recycled AChRs were incorporated into the synapse within hours of initial labeling, and their numbers increased with time. At fully functional synapses, AChR recycling was robust and comparable in magnitude with the insertion of newly synthesized receptors, whereas chronic synaptic activity blockade nearly abolished receptor recycling. Finally, using the same sequential labeling method, we found that acetylcholinesterase, another synaptic component, does not recycle. These results identify an activity-dependent AChR-recycling mechanism that enables the regulation of receptor density, which could lead to rapid alterations in synaptic efficacy.

  5. Sequence and functional expression of a single alpha subunit of an insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, J; Buckingham, S D; Shingai, R; Lunt, G G; Goosey, M W; Darlison, M G; Sattelle, D B; Barnard, E A

    1990-01-01

    We report the isolation and sequence of a cDNA clone that encodes a locust (Schistocerca gregaria) nervous system nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) subunit (alpha L1). The calculated molecular weight of the unglycosylated polypeptide, which contains in the proposed extracellular domain two adjacent cysteine residues which are characteristic of alpha (ligand binding) subunits, is 60,641 daltons. Injection into Xenopus oocytes, of RNA synthesized from this clone in vitro, results in expression of functional nicotinic receptors in the oocyte membrane. In these, nicotine opens a cation channel; the receptors are blocked by both alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-Bgt) and kappa-bungarotoxin (kappa-Bgt). Reversible block of the expressed insect AChR by mecamylamine, d-tubocurarine, tetraethylammonium, bicuculline and strychnine has also been observed. These data are entirely consistent with previously reported electrophysiological studies on in vivo insect nicotinic receptors and also with biochemical studies on an alpha-Bgt affinity purified locust AChR. Thus, a functional receptor exhibiting the characteristic pharmacology of an in vivo insect nicotinic AChR can be expressed in Xenopus oocytes by injection with a single subunit RNA. PMID:1702381

  6. Study of the Peripheral Nerve Fibers Myelin Structure Changes during Activation of Schwann Cell Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Verdiyan, Ekaterina E.; Allakhverdiev, Elvin S.; Maksimov, Georgy V.

    2016-01-01

    In the present paper we consider a new type of mechanism by which neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) regulates the properties of peripheral nerve fibers myelin. Our data show the importance of the relationship between the changes in the number of Schwann cell (SC) acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) and the axon excitation (different intervals between action potentials (APs)). Using Raman spectroscopy, an effect of activation of SC AChRs on the myelin membrane fluidity was investigated. It was found, that ACh stimulates an increase in lipid ordering degree of the myelin lipids, thus providing evidence for specific role of the “axon-SC” interactions at the axon excitation. It was proposed, that during the axon excitation, the SC membrane K+- depolarization and the Ca2+—influx led to phospholipase activation or exocytosis of intracellular membrane vesicles and myelin structure reorganization. PMID:27455410

  7. Acetylcholine receptor clustering and nuclear movement in muscle fibers in culture

    PubMed Central

    1987-01-01

    We have studied the formation of acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clusters and the behavior of myonuclei in rat and chick skeletal muscle cells grown in cell culture. These cells were treated with a factor derived from Torpedo electric extracellular matrix, which causes a large increase in their number of AChR clusters. We found that these clusters were located preferentially in membrane regions above myonuclei. This cluster-nucleus colocalization is explained by our finding that most of the nuclei near clusters remain relatively stationary, while most of those away from clusters are able to translocate throughout the myotube. In some cases, clusters clearly formed first, then nuclei migrated underneath and became immobilized. If clustered AChRs later dispersed, their associated nuclei resumed moving. These results suggest that AChR clustering initiates an extensive cytoskeletal rearrangement that causes the subcluster localization of organelles, potentially providing a stable source of newly synthesized AChRs for insertion into the cluster. PMID:3793762

  8. Subnanosecond polarized fluorescence photobleaching: rotational diffusion of acetylcholine receptors on developing muscle cells.

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Y; Axelrod, D

    1995-01-01

    Polarized fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (PFRAP) is a technique for measuring the rate of rotational motion of biomolecules on living, nondeoxygenated cells with characteristic times previously ranging from milliseconds to many seconds. Although very broad, that time range excludes the possibility of quantitatively observing freely rotating membrane protein monomers that typically should have a characteristic decay time of only several microseconds. This report describes an extension of the PFRAP technique to a much shorter time scale. With this new system, PFRAP experiments can be conducted with sample time as short as 0.4 microseconds and detection of possible characteristic times of less than 2 microseconds. The system is tested on rhodamine-alpha-bungarotoxin-labeled acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) on myotubes grown in primary cultures of embryonic rat muscle, in both endogenously clustered and nonclustered regions of AChR distribution. It is found that approximately 40% of the AChRs in nonclustered regions undergoes rotational diffusion fast enough to possibly arise from unrestricted monomer Brownian motion. The AChRs in clusters, on the other hand, are almost immobile. The effects of rat embryonic brain extract (which contains AChR aggregating factors) on the myotube AChR were also examined by the fast PFRAP system. Brain extract is known to abolish the presence of endogenous clusters and to induce the formation of new clusters. It is found here that rotational diffusion of AChR in the extract-induced clusters is as slow as that in endogenous clusters on untreated cells but that rotational diffusion in the nonclustered regions of extract-treated myotubes remains rapid. Images FIGURE 3 PMID:8527682

  9. Proteins with epitopes of the acetylcholine receptor in epithelial cell cultures of thymomas in myasthenia gravis.

    PubMed Central

    Marx, A.; Kirchner, T.; Hoppe, F.; O'Connor, R.; Schalke, B.; Tzartos, S.; Müller-Hermelink, H. K.

    1989-01-01

    Thymomas from 12 patients with myasthenia gravis (MG) were investigated for the presence of epitopes of the alpha-subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AchR) using monoclonal antibodies (MAb) reacting against the AchR. In all but two of the tumors epitopes corresponding to antigenic determinants located on the cytoplasmic side of the AchR were identified. From eight thymomas cell lines were established that have been kept in culture for up to 6 months. The cultured cells expressed the same AchR-epitopes as did the primary tumors. During early passages the percentage of epithelial cells positive for the AchR epitopes approximately mirrored the percentage of positive cells in the original tumors. With passaging the relative number of positive cells usually declined but in some cultures an increase was observed. Three cell lines that showed extensive staining with an MAb against the AchR were radiolabeled to characterize the antigen. From protein extracts of these three cell lines proteins of 45 kd and 156 kd molecular weight (MW) were precipitated. These proteins are different from other proteins described in the context of both thymomas and MG. The negative reactivity with MAb against other epitopes of the alpha-subunit, especially against the main immunogenic region (MIR), speaks in favor of membrane-associated proteins of only limited crossreactivity to the AchR. A previous study found an almost exclusive occurrence of these AchR-epitopes in thymomas associated with MG, but not in other thymomas of similar histologic type. The expression of the proteins described here could therefore play a role in the triggering of the autoimmune process against the AchR of the motor, endplate in MG patients. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 PMID:2468286

  10. Conductance Properties of the Acetylcholine Receptor Current of Guinea Pig Outer Hair Cells

    PubMed Central

    Darbon, Pascal; Wright, Daniel J.

    2010-01-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) current of outer hair cells (OHCs) was investigated in isolated and voltage-clamped cells under conditions where co-activating Ca2+-activated K+ currents had been abolished using internal BAPTA, external calcium removal and/or depolarisation to positive voltages. The AChR current activated rapidly and thereafter declined in the continued presence of ACh. Reversal potential measurements indicated that it was a non-specific cation current with a substantial Ca2+ permeability. It had a characteristic bidirectional rectification with an especially prominent outward component in solutions containing 1 mM Ca2+. The I–V relation was fitted with a single-energy barrier model. The fit suggests a blocking site within the channel, situated about one third of the way through the membrane from the outside and probably normally occupied by Ca2+ or Mg2+. The AChR current was sensitive to the external Ca2+ since it was reduced, to differing extents, in nominally Ca2+-free saline or in high Ca2+ saline (10 mM). In the presence of a nominally Mg2+-free solution containing 0.4 mM Ca2+, the currents were larger, indicating a potentiated response. This type of behaviour is also shown by recombinant α9α10 AChRs, suggesting a close similarity. The AChR current at both positive and negative voltages was reduced in external solutions where most of the Na+ had been replaced by NMG+. The conductance properties of the OHC AChR are compared with α9α10 receptors and nicotinic receptors in other hair cells and discussed in terms of the accepted functional role of providing calcium influx leading to efferent synaptic inhibition of hair cells. PMID:20941522

  11. Mechanism of nasal tolerance induced by a recombinant fragment of acetylcholine receptor for treatment of experimental myasthenia gravis.

    PubMed

    Im, S H; Barchan, D; Fuchs, S; Souroujon, M C

    2000-11-01

    Acetylcholine receptor (AChR) is the major autoantigen in myasthenia gravis (MG) and experimental autoimmune MG (EAMG). Here we analyze the mechanisms involved in suppression of ongoing EAMG in rats by nasal administration of a recombinant fragment from the human AChR alpha-subunit. We demonstrate that such a fragment, expressed without a fusion partner, confers nasal tolerance that can be adoptively transferred. Our observations suggest that the underlying mechanism of this nasal tolerance is active suppression involving a shift from a Th1 to a Th2/Th3-regulated AChR-specific response which may be mediated by down regulation of costimulatory factors.

  12. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor: Binding of nitroxide analogs of a local anesthetic and a photoactivatable analog of phosphatidylserine

    SciTech Connect

    Blanton, M.P.

    1989-01-01

    Electron spin resonance was used to contrast the accessibility of tertiary and quaternary amine local anesthetics to their high affinity binding site in the desensitized Torpedo californica acetylcholine receptor (AchR). Preincubation of AchR-rich membranes with agonist resulted in a substantial reduction in the initial association of the quaternary amine local anesthetic C6SLMEI with the receptor. The time-dependent reduction in association follows a biphasic exponential function having rate constants of 0.19 min{sup {minus}1} and 0.03 min{sup {minus}1}. In contrast, agonist preincubation did not produce a comparable decrease in the association of C6SL, a tertiary amine analog, with the AchR. The results are modeled in two ways: (1) A charge gate near the channel mouth in the desensitized receptor limits access of the permanently charged cationic local anesthetic (C6SLMEI), but not for the uncharged form of the tertiary amine anesthetic C6SL. (2) A hydrophobic pathway, possibly through a corridor in the annular lipid surrounding receptor subunits, allows the uncharged form of C6SL to reach the high affinity binding site in the AchR. A photoactivatable analog of phosphatidylserine {sup 125}I 4-azido salicylic acid-phosphatidylserine ({sup 125}I ASA-PS) was use to label both Torpedo californica acetylcholine receptor-rich membranes and reconstituted AchR membranes. All four subunits of the AchR were found to incorporate label, with the {alpha} subunit incorporating approximately twice as much as each of the other subunits on a per mole basis. The regions of the AchR {alpha} subunit that incorporate {sup 125}I ASA-PS were mapped by Staphylococcus aureus V8 protease digestion. Eighty-one per cent of the incorporated label was localized to 11.7 and 10.1 kdal V8 cleavage fragments.

  13. Asynchronous assembly of the acetylcholine receptor and of the 43-kD nu1 protein in the postsynaptic membrane of developing Torpedo marmorata electrocyte

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    The assembly of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AchR) and the 43- kD protein (v1), the two major components of the post synaptic membrane of the electromotor synapse, was followed in Torpedo marmorata electrocyte during embryonic development by immunocytochemical methods. At the first developmental stage investigated (45-mm embryos), accumulation of AchR at the ventral pole of the newly formed electrocyte was observed within columns before innervation could be detected. No concomitant accumulation of 43-kD immunoreactivity in AchR- rich membrane domains was observed at this stage, but a transient asymmetric distribution of the extracellular protein, laminin, which paralleled that of the AchR, was noticed. At the subsequent stage studied (80-mm embryos), codistribution of the two proteins was noticed on the ventral face of the cell. Intracellular pools of AchR and 43-kD protein were followed at the EM level in 80-mm electrocytes. AchR immunoreactivity was detected within membrane compartments, which include the perinuclear cisternae of the endoplasmic reticulum and the plasma membrane. On the other hand, 43-kD immunoreactivity was not found associated with the AchR in the intracellular compartments of the cell, but codistributed with the AchR at the level of the plasma membrane. The data reported in this study suggest that AchR clustering in vivo is not initially determined by the association of the AchR with the 43-kD protein, but rather relies on AchR interaction with extracellular components, for instance from the basement membrane, laid down in the tissue before the entry of the electromotor nerve endings. PMID:2642909

  14. 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

  15. Acetylcholine receptor pathway mutations explain various fetal akinesia deformation sequence disorders.

    PubMed

    Michalk, Anne; Stricker, Sigmar; Becker, Jutta; Rupps, Rosemarie; Pantzar, Tapio; Miertus, Jan; Botta, Giovanni; Naretto, Valeria G; Janetzki, Catrin; Yaqoob, Nausheen; Ott, Claus-Eric; Seelow, Dominik; Wieczorek, Dagmar; Fiebig, Britta; Wirth, Brunhilde; Hoopmann, Markus; Walther, Marisa; Körber, Friederike; Blankenburg, Markus; Mundlos, Stefan; Heller, Raoul; Hoffmann, Katrin

    2008-02-01

    Impaired fetal movement causes malformations, summarized as fetal akinesia deformation sequence (FADS), and is triggered by environmental and genetic factors. Acetylcholine receptor (AChR) components are suspects because mutations in the fetally expressed gamma subunit (CHRNG) of AChR were found in two FADS disorders, lethal multiple pterygium syndrome (LMPS) and Escobar syndrome. Other AChR subunits alpha1, beta1, and delta (CHRNA1, CHRNB1, CHRND) as well as receptor-associated protein of the synapse (RAPSN) previously revealed missense or compound nonsense-missense mutations in viable congenital myasthenic syndrome; lethality of homozygous null mutations was predicted but never shown. We provide the first report to our knowledge of homozygous nonsense mutations in CHRNA1 and CHRND and show that they were lethal, whereas novel recessive missense mutations in RAPSN caused a severe but not necessarily lethal phenotype. To elucidate disease-associated malformations such as frequent abortions, fetal edema, cystic hygroma, or cardiac defects, we studied Chrna1, Chrnb1, Chrnd, Chrng, and Rapsn in mouse embryos and found expression in skeletal muscles but also in early somite development. This indicates that early developmental defects might be due to somite expression in addition to solely muscle-specific effects. We conclude that complete or severe functional disruption of fetal AChR causes lethal multiple pterygium syndrome whereas milder alterations result in fetal hypokinesia with inborn contractures or a myasthenic syndrome later in life.

  16. Structural characterization of the main immunogenic region of the Torpedo acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Morell, Stuart W; Trinh, Vu B; Gudipati, Eswari; Friend, Alexander; Page, Nelson A; Agius, Mark A; Richman, David P; Fairclough, Robert H

    2014-03-01

    To develop antigen-specific immunotherapies for autoimmune diseases, knowledge of the molecular structure of targeted immunological hotspots will guide the production of reagents to inhibit and halt production of antigen specific attack agents. To this end we have identified three noncontiguous segments of the Torpedo nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) α-subunit that contribute to the conformationally sensitive immunological hotspot on the AChR termed the main immunogenic region (MIR): α(1-12), α(65-79), and α(110-115). This region is the target of greater than 50% of the anti-AChR Abs in serum from patients with myasthenia gravis (MG) and animals with experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG). Many monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) raised in one species against an electric organ AChR cross react with the neuromuscular AChR MIR in several species. Probing the Torpedo AChR α-subunit with mAb 132A, a disease inducing anti-MIR mAb raised against the Torpedo AChR, we have determined that two of the three MIR segments, α(1-12) and α(65-79), form a complex providing the signature components recognized by mAb 132A. These two segments straddle a third, α(110-115), that seems not to contribute specific side chains for 132A recognition, but is necessary for optimum antibody binding. This third segment appears to form a foundation upon which the three-dimensional 132A epitope is anchored.

  17. Redistribution of terbium ions across acetylcholine receptor-enriched membranes induced by agonist desensitization.

    PubMed

    Lee, Thomas E; Chuang, Anthony R; Marek, Matthew S; Doniach, Sebastian; Fairclough, Robert H

    2009-04-08

    Using small-angle x-ray diffraction from centrifugally oriented acetylcholine receptor (AChR) enriched membranes coupled with anomalous scattering from terbium ions (Tb3+) titrated into presumed Ca2+ binding sites, we have mapped the distribution of Tb3+ perpendicular to the membrane plane using a heavy atom refinement algorithm. We have compared the distribution of Tb3+ in the closed resting state with that in the carbamylcholine-desensitized state. In the closed resting state we find 45 Tb3+ ions distributed in 10 narrow peaks perpendicular to the membrane plane. Applying the same refinement procedure to the data from carbamylcholine desensitized AChR we find 18 fewer Tb3+ ions in eight peaks, and slight rearrangements of Tb3+ density in the peaks near the ends of the AChR ion channel pore. These agonist dependent changes in the Tb3+ stoichiometry and distribution suggest a likely role for multivalent cations in stabilizing the different functional states of the AChR, and the changes in the Tb3+ distribution at the two ends of the pore suggest a potential role for multivalent cations in the gating of the ion channel.

  18. Photoaffinity labeling of the Torpedo californica nicotinic acetylcholine receptor with an aryl azide derivative of phosphatidylserine

    SciTech Connect

    Blanton, M.P.; Wang, H.H. )

    1990-02-06

    A photoactivatable analogue of phosphatidylserine, {sup 125}I-labeled 4-azidosalicylic acid-phosphatidylserine ({sup 125}I ASA-PS), was used to label both native acetylcholine receptor (AchR)-rich membranes from Torpedo californica and AchR membranes affinity purified from Torpedo reconstituted into asolectin vesicles. The radioiodinated arylazido group attaches directly to the phospholipid head group and thus probes for regions of the AchR structure in contact with the negatively charged head group of phosphatidylserine. All four subunits of the AchR incorporated the label, with the {alpha} subunit incorporating approximately twice as much as each of the other subunits on a per mole basis. The regions of the AchR {alpha} subunit that incorporated {sup 125}I ASA-PS were mapped by Staphylococcus aureus V8 protease digestion. The majority of label incorporated into fragments representing a more complete digestion of the {alpha} subunit was localized to 11.7- and 10.1-kDa V8 cleavage fragments, both beginning at Asn-339 and of sufficient length to contain the hydrophobic region M4. An 18.7-kDa fragment beginning at Ser-173 and of sufficient length to contain the hydrophobic regions M1, M2, and M3 was also significantly labeled. In contrast, V8 cleavage fragments representing roughly a third of the amino-terminal portion of the {alpha} subunit incorporated little or no detectable amount of probe.

  19. Antigenic role of single residues within the main immunogenic region of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Papadouli, I; Potamianos, S; Hadjidakis, I; Bairaktari, E; Tsikaris, V; Sakarellos, C; Cung, M T; Marraud, M; Tzartos, S J

    1990-01-01

    The target of most of the autoantibodies against the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) in myasthenic sera is the main immunogenic region (MIR) on the extracellular side of the AChR alpha-subunit. Binding of anti-MIR monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) has been recently localized between residues alpha 67 and alpha 76 of Torpedo californica electric organ (WNPADYGGIK) and human muscle (WNPDDYGGVK) AChR. In order to evaluate the contribution of each residue to the antigenicity of the MIR, we synthesized peptides corresponding to residues alpha 67-76 from Torpedo and human AChRs, together with 13 peptide analogues. Nine of these analogues had one residue of the Torpedo decapeptide replaced by L-alanine, three had a structure which was intermediate between those of the Torpedo and human alpha 67-76 decapeptides, and one had D-alanine in position 73. Binding studies employing six anti-MIR mAbs and all 15 peptides revealed that some residues (Asn68 and Asp71) are indispensable for binding by all mAbs tested, whereas others are important only for binding by some mAbs. Antibody binding was mainly restricted to residues alpha 68-74, the most critical sequence being alpha 68-71. Fish electric organ and human MIR form two distinct groups of strongly overlapping epitopes. Some peptide analogues enhanced mAb binding compared with Torpedo and human peptides, suggesting that the construction of a very antigenic MIR is feasible. PMID:1695844

  20. 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

  1. 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…

  2. Standardization of the experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG) model by immunization of rats with Torpedo californica acetylcholine receptors — Recommendations for methods and experimental designs

    PubMed Central

    Losen, Mario; Martinez-Martinez, Pilar; Molenaar, Peter C.; Lazaridis, Konstantinos; Tzartos, Socrates; Brenner, Talma; Duan, Rui-Sheng; Luo, Jie; Lindstrom, Jon; Kusner, Linda

    2015-01-01

    Myasthenia gravis (MG) with antibodies against the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) is characterized by a chronic, fatigable weakness of voluntary muscles. The production of autoantibodies involves the dysregulation of T cells which provide the environment for the development of autoreactive B cells. The symptoms are caused by destruction of the postsynaptic membrane and degradation of the AChR by IgG autoantibodies, predominantly of the G1 and G3 subclasses. Active immunization of animals with AChR from mammalian muscles, AChR from Torpedo or Electrophorus electric organs, and recombinant or synthetic AChR fragments generates a chronic model of MG, termed experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG). This model covers cellular mechanisms involved in the immune response against the AChR, e.g. antigen presentation, T cell-help and regulation, B cell selection and differentiation into plasma cells. Our aim is to define standard operation procedures and recommendations for the rat EAMG model using purified AChR from the Torpedo californica electric organ, in order to facilitate more rapid translation of preclinical proof of concept or efficacy studies into clinical trials and, ultimately, clinical practice. PMID:25796590

  3. Expression of functional human α6β2β3* acetylcholine receptors in Xenopus laevis oocytes achieved through subunit chimeras and concatamers.

    PubMed

    Kuryatov, Alexandre; Lindstrom, Jon

    2011-01-01

    α6β2β3* acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) on dopaminergic neurons are important targets for drugs to treat nicotine addiction and Parkinson's disease. However, it has not been possible to efficiently express functional α6β2β3* AChRs in oocytes or transfected cells. α6/α3 subunit chimeras permit expression of functional AChRs and reveal that parts of the α6 M1 transmembrane domain and large cytoplasmic domain impair assembly. Concatameric subunits permit assembly of functional α6β2β3* AChRs with defined subunit compositions and subunit orders. Assembly of accessory subunits is limiting in formation of mature AChRs. A single linker between the β3 accessory subunit and an α4 or α6 subunit is sufficient to permit assembly of complex β3-(α4β2)(α6β2) or β3-(α6β2)(α4β2) AChRs. Concatameric pentamers such as β3-α6-β2-α4-β2 have been functionally characterized. α6β2β3* AChRs are sensitive to activation by drugs used for smoking cessation therapy (nicotine, varenicline, and cytisine) and by sazetidine. All these are partial agonists. (α6β2)(α4β2)β3 AChRs are most sensitive to agonists. (α6β2)₂β3 AChRs have the greatest Ca²+ permeability. (α4β2)(α6β2)β3 AChRs are most efficiently transported to the cell surface, whereas (α6β2)₂β3 AChRs are the least efficiently transported. Dopaminergic neurons may have special chaperones for assembling accessory subunits with α6 subunits and for transporting (α6β2)₂β3 AChRs to the cell surface. Concatameric pentamers and pentamers formed from combinations of trimers, dimers, and monomers exhibit similar properties, indicating that the linkers between subunits do not alter their functional properties. For the first time, these concatamers allow analysis of functional properties of α6β2β3* AChRs. These concatamers should enable selection of drugs specific for α6β2β3* AChRs.

  4. Neuromuscular synapse integrity requires linkage of acetylcholine receptors to postsynaptic intermediate filament networks via rapsyn–plectin 1f complexes

    PubMed Central

    Mihailovska, Eva; Raith, Marianne; Valencia, Rocio G.; Fischer, Irmgard; Banchaabouchi, Mumna Al; Herbst, Ruth; Wiche, Gerhard

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in the cytolinker protein plectin lead to grossly distorted morphology of neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) in patients suffering from epidermolysis bullosa simplex (EBS)-muscular dystrophy (MS) with myasthenic syndrome (MyS). Here we investigated whether plectin contributes to the structural integrity of NMJs by linking them to the postsynaptic intermediate filament (IF) network. Live imaging of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) in cultured myotubes differentiated ex vivo from immortalized plectin-deficient myoblasts revealed them to be highly mobile and unable to coalesce into stable clusters, in contrast to wild-type cells. We found plectin isoform 1f (P1f) to bridge AChRs and IFs via direct interaction with the AChR-scaffolding protein rapsyn in an isoform-specific manner; forced expression of P1f in plectin-deficient cells rescued both compromised AChR clustering and IF network anchoring. In conditional plectin knockout mice with gene disruption in muscle precursor/satellite cells (Pax7-Cre/cKO), uncoupling of AChRs from IFs was shown to lead to loss of postsynaptic membrane infoldings and disorganization of the NMJ microenvironment, including its invasion by microtubules. In their phenotypic behavior, mutant mice closely mimicked EBS-MD-MyS patients, including impaired body balance, severe muscle weakness, and reduced life span. Our study demonstrates that linkage to desmin IF networks via plectin is crucial for formation and maintenance of AChR clusters, postsynaptic NMJ organization, and body locomotion. PMID:25318670

  5. Functional Characterization of a Novel Class of Morantel-Sensitive Acetylcholine Receptors in Nematodes

    PubMed Central

    Courtot, Elise; Charvet, Claude L.; Beech, Robin N.; Harmache, Abdallah; Wolstenholme, Adrian J.; Holden-Dye, Lindy; O’Connor, Vincent; Peineau, Nicolas; Woods, Debra J.; Neveu, Cedric

    2015-01-01

    Acetylcholine receptors are pentameric ligand–gated channels involved in excitatory neuro-transmission in both vertebrates and invertebrates. In nematodes, they represent major targets for cholinergic agonist or antagonist anthelmintic drugs. Despite the large diversity of acetylcholine-receptor subunit genes present in nematodes, only a few receptor subtypes have been characterized so far. Interestingly, parasitic nematodes affecting human or animal health possess two closely related members of this gene family, acr-26 and acr-27 that are essentially absent in free-living or plant parasitic species. Using the pathogenic parasitic nematode of ruminants, Haemonchus contortus, as a model, we found that Hco-ACR-26 and Hco-ACR-27 are co-expressed in body muscle cells. We demonstrated that co-expression of Hco-ACR-26 and Hco-ACR-27 in Xenopus laevis oocytes led to the functional expression of an acetylcholine-receptor highly sensitive to the anthelmintics morantel and pyrantel. Importantly we also reported that ACR-26 and ACR-27, from the distantly related parasitic nematode of horses, Parascaris equorum, also formed a functional acetylcholine-receptor highly sensitive to these two drugs. In Caenorhabditis elegans, a free-living model nematode, we demonstrated that heterologous expression of the H. contortus and P. equorum receptors drastically increased its sensitivity to morantel and pyrantel, mirroring the pharmacological properties observed in Xenopus oocytes. Our results are the first to describe significant molecular determinants of a novel class of nematode body wall muscle AChR. PMID:26625142

  6. Expression of five acetylcholine receptor subunit genes in Brugia malayi adult worms

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ben-Wen; Rush, Amy C.; Weil, Gary J.

    2015-01-01

    Acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) are required for body movement in parasitic nematodes and are targets of “classical” anthelmintic drugs such as levamisole and pyrantel and of newer drugs such as tribendimidine and derquantel. While neurotransmission explains the effects of these drugs on nematode movement, their effects on parasite reproduction are unexplained. The levamisole AChR type (L-AChRs) in Caenorhabditis elegans is comprised of five subunits: Cel-UNC-29, Cel-UNC-38, Cel-UNC-63, Cel-LEV-1 and Cel-LEV-8. The genome of the filarial parasite Brugia malayi contains nine AChRs subunits including orthologues of Cel-unc-29, Cel-unc-38, and Cel-unc-63. We performed in situ hybridization with RNA probes to localize the expression of five AChR genes (Bm1_35890-Bma-unc-29, Bm1_20330-Bma-unc-38, Bm1_38195-Bma-unc-63, Bm1_48815-Bma-acr-26 and Bm1_40515-Bma-acr-12) in B. malayi adult worms. Four of these genes had similar expression patterns with signals in body muscle, developing embryos, spermatogonia, uterine wall adjacent to stretched microfilariae, wall of Vas deferens, and lateral cord. Three L-AChR subunit genes (Bma-unc-29, Bma-unc-38 and Bma-unc-63) were expressed in body muscle, which is a known target of levamisole. Bma-acr-12 was co-expressed with these levamisole subunit genes in muscle, and this suggests that its protein product may form receptors with other alpha subunits. Bma-acr-26 was expressed in male muscle but not in female muscle. Strong expression signals of these genes in early embryos and gametes in uterus and testis suggest that AChRs may have a role in nervous system development of embryogenesis and spermatogenesis. This would be consistent with embryotoxic effects of drugs that target these receptors in filarial worms. Our data show that the expression of these receptor genes is tightly regulated with regard to localization in adult worms and developmental stage in embryos and gametes. These results may help to explain the broad effects

  7. Neural regulation of MRNA for the alpha-subunit of acetylcholine receptors: Role of neuromuscular transmission. (Reannouncement with new availability information)

    SciTech Connect

    Lipsky, N.G.; Drachman, D.B.; Pestronk, A.; Shih, P.J.

    1989-12-31

    Levels of mRNA for acetylcholine receptor (AChR) subunits are relatively low in innervated skeletal muscles. Following denervation they rise rapidly, leading to increased AChR synthesis. The mechanism by which motor nerves normally regulate these mRNA levels is not yet known. In order to determine the possible role of synaptic transmission in this process, the authors have compared the effect of blockade of cholinergic ACh transmission with that of surgical denervation. Blockade of quantal ACh transmission was produced by injection of type A botulinum toxin into the soleus muscles of rats.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. Suppression of ongoing experimental myasthenia by oral treatment with an acetylcholine receptor recombinant fragment.

    PubMed

    Im, S H; Barchan, D; Fuchs, S; Souroujon, M C

    1999-12-01

    Myasthenia gravis (MG) is an autoimmune disorder in which the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) is the major autoantigen. In an attempt to develop an antigen-specific therapy for MG, we administered a nonmyasthenogenic recombinant fragment of AChR orally to rats. This fragment, corresponding to the extracellular domain of the human AChR alpha-subunit (Halpha1-205), protected rats from subsequently induced experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG) and suppressed ongoing EAMG when treatment was initiated during either the acute or chronic phases of disease. Prevention and suppression of EAMG were accompanied by a significant decrease in AChR-specific humoral and cellular responses. The underlying mechanism for the Halpha1-205-induced oral tolerance seems to be active suppression, mediated by a shift from a T-helper 1 (Th1) to a Th2/Th3 response. This shift was assessed by changes in the cytokine profile, a deviation of anti-AChR IgG isotypes from IgG2 to IgG1, and a suppressed AChR-specific delayed-type hypersensitivity response. Our results in experimental myasthenia suggest that oral administration of AChR-specific recombinant fragments may be considered for antigen-specific immunotherapy of myasthenia gravis.

  11. Suppression of ongoing experimental myasthenia by oral treatment with an acetylcholine receptor recombinant fragment

    PubMed Central

    Im, Sin-Hyeog; Barchan, Dora; Fuchs, Sara; Souroujon, Miriam C.

    1999-01-01

    Myasthenia gravis (MG) is an autoimmune disorder in which the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) is the major autoantigen. In an attempt to develop an antigen-specific therapy for MG, we administered a nonmyasthenogenic recombinant fragment of AChR orally to rats. This fragment, corresponding to the extracellular domain of the human AChR α-subunit (Hα1-205), protected rats from subsequently induced experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG) and suppressed ongoing EAMG when treatment was initiated during either the acute or chronic phases of disease. Prevention and suppression of EAMG were accompanied by a significant decrease in AChR-specific humoral and cellular responses. The underlying mechanism for the Hα1-205–induced oral tolerance seems to be active suppression, mediated by a shift from a T-helper 1 (Th1) to a Th2/Th3 response. This shift was assessed by changes in the cytokine profile, a deviation of anti-AChR IgG isotypes from IgG2 to IgG1, and a suppressed AChR-specific delayed-type hypersensitivity response. Our results in experimental myasthenia suggest that oral administration of AChR-specific recombinant fragments may be considered for antigen-specific immunotherapy of myasthenia gravis. J. Clin. Invest. 104:1723–1730 (1999). PMID:10606626

  12. 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.

  13. Differential role of ventral tegmental area acetylcholine and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors in cocaine-seeking.

    PubMed

    Solecki, Wojciech; Wickham, Robert J; Behrens, Shay; Wang, Jie; Zwerling, Blake; Mason, Graeme F; Addy, Nii A

    2013-12-01

    Exposure to drug-associated cues evokes drug-seeking behavior and is regarded as a major cause of relapse. Cues evoke burst firing of ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons and phasic DA release in the nucleus accumbens (NAc). Cholinergic and glutamatergic input to the VTA is suggested to gate phasic DA activity. However, the role of VTA cholinergic and glutamatergic receptors in regulating phasic dopamine release and cue-induced drug-seeking in cocaine experienced subjects is not known. In male Sprague-Dawley rats, we found that VTA inactivation strongly inhibited, while VTA stimulation promoted, cocaine-seeking behavior during early withdrawal. Blockade of phasic activated D1 receptors in the NAc core also strongly inhibited cue-induced cocaine-seeking--suggesting an important role of phasic DA activity in the VTA to NAc core circuit. Next, we examined the role of VTA acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) in regulating both NAc core phasic DA release and cue-induced cocaine-seeking. In cocaine naïve subjects, VTA infusion of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) antagonist mecamylamine, the muscarinic AChR antagonist scopolamine, or the NMDAR antagonist AP-5, led to robust attenuation of phasic DA release in the NAc core. During early cocaine withdrawal, VTA infusion of AP-5 had limited effects on NAc phasic DA release and cue-induced cocaine-seeking while VTA infusion of mecamylamine or scopolamine robustly inhibited both phasic DA release and cocaine-seeking. The results demonstrate that VTA AChRs, but not NMDARs, strongly regulate cue-induced cocaine-seeking and phasic DA release during early cocaine withdrawal.

  14. Analysis of acetylcholine receptor phosphorylation sites using antibodies to synthetic peptides and monoclonal antibodies.

    PubMed Central

    Safran, A; Neumann, D; Fuchs, S

    1986-01-01

    Three peptides corresponding to residues 354-367, 364-374, 373-387 of the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) delta subunit were synthesized. These peptides represent the proposed phosphorylation sites of the cAMP-dependent protein kinase, the tyrosine-specific protein kinase and the calcium/phospholipid-dependent protein kinase respectively. Using these peptides as substrates for phosphorylation by the catalytic subunit of cAMP-dependent protein kinase it was shown that only peptides 354-367 was phosphorylated whereas the other two were not. These results verify the location of the cAMP-dependent protein kinase phosphorylation site within the AChR delta subunit. Antibodies elicited against these peptides reacted with the delta subunit. The antipeptide antibodies and two monoclonal antibodies (7F2, 5.46) specific for the delta subunit were tested for their binding to non-phosphorylated receptor and to receptor phosphorylated by the catalytic subunit of cAMP-dependent protein kinase. Antibodies to peptide 354-367 were found to react preferentially with non-phosphorylated receptor whereas the two other anti-peptide antibodies bound equally to phosphorylated and non-phosphorylated receptors. Monoclonal antibody 7F2 reacted preferentially with the phosphorylated form of the receptor whereas monoclonal antibody 5.46 did not distinguish between the two forms. Images Fig. 2. Fig. 4. Fig. 5. PMID:3816758

  15. Muscarinic, but not nicotinic, acetylcholine receptor blockade in the ventral tegmental area attenuates cue-induced sucrose-seeking

    PubMed Central

    Addy, Nii A.; Nunes, Eric J.; Wickham, Robert J.

    2015-01-01

    The mesolimbic dopamine (DA) system is known to play a role in cue-mediated reward-seeking for natural rewards and drugs of abuse. Specifically, cholinergic and glutamatergic receptors in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) have been shown to regulate cue-induced drug-seeking. However, the potential role of these VTA receptors in regulating cue-induced reward seeking for natural rewards is unknown. Here, we examined whether blockade of VTA acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) would alter cue-induced sucrose seeking in male Sprague-Dawley rats. Subjects underwent 10 days of sucrose self-administration training (fixed ratio 1 schedule) followed by 7 days of forced abstinence. On withdrawal day 7, rats received bilateral VTA infusion of vehicle, the muscarinic AChR antagonist scopolamine (2.4 or 24 μg/side), the nicotinic AChR antagonist mecamylamine (3 or 30 μg/side), or the NMDAR antagonist AP-5 (0.1 or 1 μg/side) immediately prior to examination of cue-induced sucrose-seeking. Scopolamine infusion led to robust attenuation, but did not completely block, sucrose-seeking behavior. In contrast, VTA administration of mecamylamine or AP-5 did not alter cue-induced sucrose-seeking. Together, the data suggest that VTA muscarinic AChRs, but not nicotinic AChRs nor NMDARs, facilitate the ability of food-associated cues to drive seeking behavior for a food reward. PMID:26026787

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. Chromatin modifications that support acetylcholine receptor gene activation are established during muscle cell determination and differentiation.

    PubMed

    Herndon, Carter A; Snell, Jeff; Fromm, Larry

    2011-02-01

    Localization of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) to the postsynaptic region of muscle is mediated in part by transcriptional mechanisms. An important way of regulating transcription is through targeting histone modifications on chromatin to distinct gene loci. Using chromatin immunoprecipitation, we examined the developmental regulation of certain histone modifications at the AChR epsilon subunit locus, including methylations at lysine residues K4 and K27 and acetylations at K9 and K14. We modeled various stages of muscle development in cell culture, including pre-determined cells, committed but undifferentiated myoblasts, and differentiated myotubes, and modeled synaptic myotube nuclei by stimulating myotubes with neuregulin (NRG) 1. We found that a pattern of histone modifications associated with transcriptional activation is targeted to the AChR epsilon subunit locus in myotubes prior to stimulation with NRG1 and does not change upon addition of NRG1. Instead, we found that during muscle cell determination and differentiation, specific histone modifications are targeted to the AChR epsilon subunit locus. Within the gene, at K4, dimethylation is induced during muscle cell determination, while trimethylation is induced during differentiation. At K27, loss of trimethylation and appearance of monomethylation occurs during determination and differentiation. In addition, in a region upstream of the gene, K4 di- and trimethylation, and K9/14 acetylation are induced in a distinct developmental pattern, which may reflect a functional regulatory element. These results suggest synaptic signaling does not directly target histone modifications but rather the histone modification pattern necessary for transcriptional activation is previously established in a series of steps during muscle development.

  19. Consequences of alkaline treatment for the ultrastructure of the acetylcholine-receptor-rich membranes from Torpedo marmorata electric organ

    PubMed Central

    1981-01-01

    After fixation with glutaraldehyde and impregnation with tannic acid, the membrane that underlies the nerve terminals in Torpedo marmorata electroplaque presents a typical asymmetric triple-layered structure with an unusual thickness; in addition, it is coated with electron- dense material on its inner, cytoplasmic face. Filamentous structures are frequently found attached to these "subsynaptic densities." The organization of the subsynaptic membrane is partly preserved after homogenization of the electric organ and purification of acetylcholine- receptor (AchR)-rich membrane fragments. In vitro treatment at pH 11 and 4 degrees C of these AchR-rich membranes releases an extrinsic protein of 43,000 mol wt and at the same time causes the complete disappearance of the cytoplasmic condensations. Freeze-etching of native membrane fragments discloses remnants of the ribbonlike organization of the AchR rosettes. This organization disappears ater alkaline treatment and is replaced by a network which is not observed after rapid freezing and, therefore, most likely results from the lateral redistribution of the AchR rosettes during condition of slow freezing. A dispersion of the AchR rosettes in the plane of the membrane also occurs after fusion of the pH 11-treated fragments with phospholipid vesicles. These results are interpreted in terms of a structural stabilization and immobilization of the AchR by the 43,000- Mr protein binding to the inner face of the subsynaptic membrane. PMID:7287814

  20. Implication of a multisubunit Ets-related transcription factor in synaptic expression of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Schaeffer, L; Duclert, N; Huchet-Dymanus, M; Changeux, J P

    1998-01-01

    In adult muscle, transcription of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) is restricted to the nuclei located at the neuromuscular junction. The N-box, a new promoter element, was identified recently and shown to contribute to this compartmentalized synaptic expression of the AChR delta- and epsilon-subunits. We demonstrate that the N-box mediates transcriptional activation in cultured myotubes and identify the transcription factor that binds to the N-box as a heterooligomer in myotubes and adult muscle. The GABP (GA-binding protein) alpha-subunit belongs to the Ets family of transcription factors, whereas the beta-subunit shares homology with IkappaB and Drosophila Notch protein. GABP binding specificity to mutated N-box in vitro strictly parallels the sequence requirement for beta-galactosidase targeting to the endplate in vivo. In situ hybridization studies reveal that the mRNAs of both GABP subunits are abundant in mouse diaphragm, with preferential expression of the alpha-subunit at motor endplates. In addition, heregulin increases GABPalpha protein levels and regulates phosphorylation of both subunits in cultured chick myotubes. Finally, dominant-negative mutants of either GABPalpha or GABPbeta block heregulin-elicited transcriptional activation of the AChR delta and epsilon genes. These findings establish the expected connection with a presynaptic trophic factor whose release contributes to the accumulation of AChR subunit mRNAs at the motor endplate. PMID:9606190

  1. Subunit-selective role of the M3 transmembrane domain of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in channel gating.

    PubMed

    De Rosa, María José; Corradi, Jeremías; Bouzat, Cecilia

    2008-02-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) can be either hetero-pentameric, composed of alpha and non-alpha subunits, or homo-pentameric, composed of alpha7 subunits. To explore the subunit-selective contributions of transmembrane domains to channel gating we analyzed single-channel activity of chimeric muscle AChRs. We exchanged M3 between alpha1 and epsilon or alpha7 subunits. The replacement of M3 in alpha1 by epsilonM3 significantly alters activation properties. Channel activity appears as bursts of openings whose durations are 20-fold longer than those of wild-type AChRs. In contrast, 7-fold briefer openings are observed in AChRs containing the reverse epsilon chimeric subunit. The duration of the open state decreases with the increase in the number of alpha1M3 segments, indicating additive contributions of M3 of all subunits to channel closing. Each alpha1M3 segment decreases the energy barrier of the closing process by approximately 0.8 kcal/mol. Partial chimeric subunits show that small stretches of the M3 segment contribute additively to the open duration. The replacement of alpha1 sequence by alpha7 in M3 leads to 3-fold briefer openings whereas in M1 it leads to 10-fold prolonged openings, revealing that the subunit-selective role is unique to each transmembrane segment.

  2. T helper cell recognition of muscle acetylcholine receptor in myasthenia gravis. Epitopes on the gamma and delta subunits.

    PubMed Central

    Manfredi, A A; Protti, M P; Dalton, M W; Howard, J F; Conti-Tronconi, B M

    1993-01-01

    We tested the response of CD4+ cells and/or total lymphocytes from the blood of 22 myasthenic patients and 10 healthy controls to overlapping synthetic peptides, 20 residues long, to screen the sequence of the gamma and delta subunits of human muscle acetylcholine receptor (AChR). The gamma subunit is part of the AChR expressed in embryonic muscle and is substituted in the AChRs of most adult muscles by an epsilon subunit. The delta subunit is present in both embryonic and adult AChRs. Adult extrinsic ocular muscles, which are preferentially and sometimes uniquely affected by myasthenic symptoms, and thymus, which has a still obscure but important role in the pathogenesis of myasthenia gravis, express the embryonic gamma subunit. Anti-AChR CD4+ responses were more easily detected after CD8+ depletion. All responders recognized epitopes on both the gamma and delta subunits and had severe symptoms. In four patients the CD4+ cell response was tested twice, when the symptoms were severe and during a period of remission. Consistently, the response was only detectable, or larger, when the patients were severely affected. Images PMID:7688757

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. The mammalian 43-kD acetylcholine receptor-associated protein (RAPsyn) is expressed in some nonmuscle cells

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    Torpedo electric organ and vertebrate neuromuscular junctions contain the receptor-associated protein of the synapse (RAPsyn) (previously referred to as the 43K protein), a nonactin, 43,000-Mr peripheral membrane protein associated with the cytoplasmic face of postsynaptic membranes at areas of high nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) density. Although not directly demonstrated, several lines of evidence suggest that RAPsyn is involved in the synthesis and/or maintenance of such AChR clusters. Microscopic and biochemical studies had previously indicated that RAPsyn expression is restricted to differentiated, AChR- synthesizing cells. Our recent finding that RAPsyn is also produced in undifferentiated myocytes (Frail, D.E., L.S. Musil, a. Bonanno, and J.P. Merlie, 1989. Neuron. 2:1077-1086) led to to examine whether RAPsyn is synthesized in cell types that never express AChR (i.e., cells of other than skeletal muscle origin). Various primary and established rodent cell lines were metabolically labeled with [35S]methionine, and extracts were immunoprecipitated with a monospecific anti-RAPsyn serum. Analysis of these immunoprecipitates by SDS-PAGE revealed detectable RAPsyn synthesis in some (notably fibroblast and Leydig tumor cell lines and primary cardiac cells) but not all (hepatocyte- and lymphocyte-derived) cell types. These results were further substantiated by peptide mapping studies of RAPsyn immunoprecipitated from different cells and quantitation of RAPsyn- encoding mRNA levels in mouse tissues. RAPsyn synthesized in both muscle and nonmuscle cells was shown to be tightly associated with membranes. These findings demonstrate that RAPsyn is not specific to skeletal muscle-derived cells and imply that it may function in a capacity either in addition to or instead of AChR clustering. PMID:2469679

  7. Components of Torpedo electric organ and muscle that cause aggregation of acetylcholine receptors on cultured muscle cells

    PubMed Central

    1984-01-01

    The synaptic portion of a muscle fiber's basal lamina sheath has molecules tightly bound to it that cause aggregation of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) on regenerating myofibers. Since basal lamina and other extracellular matrix constituents are insoluble in isotonic saline and detergent solutions, insoluble detergent-extracted fractions of tissues receiving cholinergic input may provide an enriched source of the AChR-aggregating molecules for detailed characterization. Here we demonstrate that such an insoluble fraction from Torpedo electric organ, a tissue with a high concentration of cholinergic synapses, causes AChRs on cultured chick muscle cells to aggregate. We have partially characterized the insoluble fraction, examined the response of muscle cells to it, and devised ways of extracting the active components with a view toward purifying them and learning whether they are similar to those in the basal lamina at the neuromuscular junction. The insoluble fraction from the electric organ was rich in extracellular matrix constituents; it contained structures resembling basal lamina sheaths and had a high density of collagen fibrils. It caused a 3- to 20-fold increase in the number of AChR clusters on cultured myotubes without significantly affecting the number or size of the myotubes. The increase was first seen 2-4 h after the fraction was added to cultures and it was maximal by 24 h. The AChR-aggregating effect was dose dependent and was due, at least in part, to lateral migration of AChRs present in the muscle cell plasma membrane at the time the fraction was applied. Activity was destroyed by heat and by trypsin. The active component(s) was extracted from the insoluble fraction with high ionic strength or pH 5.5 buffers. The extracts increased the number of AChR clusters on cultured myotubes without affecting the number or degradation rate of surface AChRs. Antiserum against the solubilized material blocked its effect on AChR distribution and bound to the

  8. Inhibitory effects of tramadol on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in adrenal chromaffin cells and in Xenopus oocytes expressing alpha 7 receptors.

    PubMed

    Shiraishi, Munehiro; Minami, Kouichiro; Uezono, Yasuhito; Yanagihara, Nobuyuki; Shigematsu, Akio; Shibuya, Izumi

    2002-05-01

    1. Tramadol has been used clinically as an analgesic; however, the mechanism of its analgesic effects is still unknown. 2. We used bovine adrenal chromaffin cells to investigate effects of tramadol on catecholamine secretion, nicotine-induced cytosolic Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)](i)) increases and membrane current changes. We also investigated effects of tramadol on alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) expressed in Xenopus oocytes. 3. Tramadol concentration-dependently suppressed carbachol-induced catecholamine secretion to 60% and 27% of the control at the concentration of 10 and 100 microM, respectively, whereas it had little effect on veratridine- or high K(+)-induced catecholamine secretion. 4. Tramadol also suppressed nicotine-induced ([Ca(2+)](i)) increases in a concentration-dependent manner. Tramadol inhibited nicotine-induced inward currents, and the inhibition was unaffected by the opioid receptor antagonist naloxone. 5. Tramadol inhibited nicotinic currents carried by alpha7 receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes. 6. Tramadol inhibited both alpha-bungarotoxin-sensitive and -insensitive nicotinic currents in bovine adrenal chromaffin cells. 7. In conclusion, tramadol inhibits catecholamine secretion partly by inhibiting nicotinic AChR functions in a naloxone-insensitive manner and alpha7 receptors are one of those inhibited by tramadol.

  9. 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

  10. [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.

  11. 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.

  12. Regulation of acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit variants in human myasthenia gravis. Quantification of steady-state levels of messenger RNA in muscle biopsy using the polymerase chain reaction.

    PubMed Central

    Guyon, T; Levasseur, P; Truffault, F; Cottin, C; Gaud, C; Berrih-Aknin, S

    1994-01-01

    Myasthenia gravis (MG) is an autoimmune disease mediated by auto-antibodies that attack the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR). To elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying the decrease in AChR levels at the neuromuscular junction, we investigated the regulation of AChR expression by analyzing mRNA of the two AChR alpha subunit isoforms (P3A+ and P3A-) in muscle samples from myasthenic patients relative to controls. We applied a quantitative method based on reverse transcription of total RNA followed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR), using an internal standard we constructed by site-directed mutagenesis. An increased expression of mRNA coding for the alpha subunit of the AChR isoforms was observed in severely affected patients (P < 0.003 versus controls) but not in moderately affected patients, independently of the anti-AChR antibody titer. Study of mRNA precursor levels indicates a higher expression in severely affected patients compared to controls, suggesting an enhanced rate of transcription of the message coding for the alpha subunit isoforms in these patients. We have also reported that mRNA encoding both isoforms are expressed at an approximate 1:1 ratio in controls and in patients. We have thus identified a new biological parameter correlated with disease severity, and provide evidence of a compensatory mechanism to balance the loss of AChR in human myasthenia gravis, which is probably triggered only above a certain degree of AChR loss. Images PMID:8040257

  13. Ric-3 chaperone-mediated stable cell-surface expression of the neuronal α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in mammalian cells

    PubMed Central

    Vallés, Ana Sofía; Roccamo, Ana M; Barrantes, Francisco J

    2009-01-01

    Aim: Studies of the α7-type neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR), one of the receptor forms involved in many physiologically relevant processes in the central nervous system, have been hampered by the inability of this homomeric protein to assemble in most heterologous expression systems. In a recent study, it was shown that the chaperone Ric-3 is necessary for the maturation and functional expression of α7-type AChRs1. The current work aims at obtaining and characterizing a cell line with high functional expression of the human α7 AChR. Methods: Ric-3 cDNA was incorporated into SHE-P1-hα7 cells expressing the α7-type AChR. Functional studies were undertaken using single-channel patch-clamp recordings. Equilibrium and kinetic [125I]α-bungarotoxin binding assays, as well as fluorescence microscopy using fluorescent α-bungarotoxin, anti-α7 antibody, and GFP-α7 were performed on the new clone. Results: The human α7-type AChR was stably expressed in a new cell line, which we coined SHE-P1-hα7-Ric-3, by co-expression of the chaperone Ric-3. Cell-surface AChRs exhibited [125I]αBTX saturable binding with an apparent KD of about 55 nmol/L. Fluorescence microscopy revealed dispersed and micro-clustered AChR aggregates at the surface of SHE-P1-hα7-Ric-3 cells. Larger micron-sized clusters were observed in the absence of receptor-clustering proteins or upon aggregation with anti-α7 antibodies. In contrast, chaperone-less SHE-P1-hα7 cells expressed only intracellular α7 AChRs and failed to produce detectable single-channel currents. Conclusion: The production of a stable and functional cell line of neuroepithelial lineage with robust cell-surface expression of neuronal α7-type AChR, as reported here, constitutes an important advance in the study of homomeric receptors in mammalian cells. PMID:19498422

  14. Myasthenia Gravis and the Tops and Bottoms of AChRs Antigenic Structure of the MIR and Specific Immunosuppression of EAMG Using AChR Cytoplasmic Domains

    PubMed Central

    Lindstrom, Jon; Luo, Jie; Kuryatov, Alexander

    2009-01-01

    The main immunogenic region (MIR), against which half or more of the autoantibodies to acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) in myasthenia gravis (MG) or experimental autoimmune MG (EAMG) are directed, is located at the extracellular end of α1 subunits. Rat monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) to the MIR efficiently compete with MG patient autoantibodies for binding to human muscle AChRs. Antibodies bound to the MIR do not interfere with cholinergic ligand binding or AChR function, but target complement and trigger antigenic modulation. Rat mAbs to the MIR also bind to human ganglionic AChR α3 subunits, but MG patient antibodies do not. By making chimeras of α1 subunits with α7 subunits or ACh binding protein, the structure of the MIR and its functional effects are being investigated. Many mAbs to the MIR bind only to the native conformation of α1 subunits because they bind to sequences that are adjacent only in the native structure. The MIR epitopes recognized by these mAbs are not recognized by most patient antibodies whose epitopes must be nearby. The presence of the MIR epitopes in α1/α7 chimeras greatly promotes AChR expression and sensitivity to activation. EAMG can be suppressed by treatment with denatured, bacterially expressed mixtures of extracellular and cytoplasmic domains of human α1, β1, γ, δ, and ε subunits. A mixture of only the cytoplasmic domains not only avoids the potential liability of provoking formation antibodies to pathologically significant epitopes on the extracellular surface, but also potently suppresses the development of EAMG. PMID:18567851

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. In vitro proliferative responses and antibody titers specific to human acetylcholine receptor synthetic peptides in patients with myasthenia gravis and relation to HLA class II genes.

    PubMed Central

    Brocke, S; Brautbar, C; Steinman, L; Abramsky, O; Rothbard, J; Neumann, D; Fuchs, S; Mozes, E

    1988-01-01

    To investigate which parts of the acetylcholine receptor are involved in the initiation and development of myasthenia gravis (MG), peptides representing different sequences of the human acetylcholine receptor alpha-subunit were synthesized. These peptides were tested for their ability to stimulate T cells of myasthenic patients and healthy control patients in proliferation assays and to bind to sera antibodies. Three of eight peptides discriminated significantly between the two groups in the proliferation assay, as well as in their ability to bind to serum antibodies. HLA-DR3 and DR5 were associated with proliferative responses to specific AChR peptides in the group of myasthenics. Acetylcholine receptor epitopes that might play a specific role in myasthenia gravis thus were demonstrated. PMID:2461962

  18. Energy for wild-type acetylcholine receptor channel gating from different choline derivatives.

    PubMed

    Bruhova, Iva; Gregg, Timothy; Auerbach, Anthony

    2013-02-05

    Agonists, including the neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh), bind at two sites in the neuromuscular ACh receptor channel (AChR) to promote a reversible, global change in protein conformation that regulates the flow of ions across the muscle cell membrane. In the synaptic cleft, ACh is hydrolyzed to acetate and choline. Replacement of the transmitter's ester acetyl group with a hydroxyl (ACh→choline) results in a + 1.8 kcal/mol reduction in the energy for gating generated by each agonist molecule from a low- to high-affinity change of the transmitter binding site (ΔG(B)). To understand the distinct actions of structurally related agonist molecules, we measured ΔG(B) for 10 related choline derivatives. Replacing the hydroxyl group of choline with different substituents, such as hydrogen, chloride, methyl, or amine, increased the energy for gating (i.e., it made ΔG(B) more negative relative to choline). Extending the ethyl hydroxide tail of choline to propyl and butyl hydroxide also increased this energy. Our findings reveal the amount of energy that is available for the AChR conformational change provided by different, structurally related agonists. We speculate that a hydrogen bond between the choline hydroxyl and the backbone carbonyl of αW149 positions this agonist's quaternary ammonium group so as to reduce the cation-π interaction between this moiety and the aromatic groups at the binding site.

  19. Sources of energy for gating by neurotransmitters in acetylcholine receptor channels.

    PubMed

    Purohit, Prasad; Bruhova, Iva; Auerbach, Anthony

    2012-06-12

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) mediate signaling in the central and peripheral nervous systems. The AChR gating conformational change is powered by a low- to high-affinity change for neurotransmitters at two transmitter binding sites. We estimated (from single-channel currents) the components of energy for gating arising from binding site aromatic residues in the α-subunit. All mutations reduced the energy (TyrC1>TrpB≈TyrC2>TyrA), with TyrC1 providing ~40% of the total. Considered one at a time, the fractional energy contributions from the aromatic rings were TrpB ~35%, TyrC1 ~28%, TyrC2 ~28%, and TyrA ~10%. Together, TrpB, TyrC1, and TyrC2 comprise an "aromatic triad" that provides much of the total energy from the transmitter for gating. Analysis of mutant pairs suggests that the energy contributions from some residues are nearly independent. Mutations of TyrC1 cause particularly large energy reductions because they remove two favorable and approximately equal interactions between the aromatic ring and the quaternary amine of the agonist and between the hydroxyl and αLysβ7.

  20. A mutational analysis of the acetylcholine receptor channel transmitter binding site.

    PubMed Central

    Akk, G; Zhou, M; Auerbach, A

    1999-01-01

    Mutagenesis and single-channel kinetic analysis were used to investigate the roles of four acetylcholine receptor channel (AChR) residues that are candidates for interacting directly with the agonist. The EC50 of the ACh dose-response curve was increased following alpha-subunit mutations Y93F and Y198F and epsilon-subunit mutations D175N and E184Q. Single-channel kinetic modeling indicates that the increase was caused mainly by a reduced gating equilibrium constant (Theta) in alphaY198F and epsilonD175N, by an increase in the equilibrium dissociation constant for ACh (KD) and a reduction in Theta in alphaY93F, and only by a reduction in KD in epsilonE184Q. This mutation altered the affinity of only one of the two binding sites and was the only mutation that reduced competition by extracellular K+. Additional mutations of epsilonE184 showed that K+ competition was unaltered in epsilonE184D and was virtually eliminated in epsilonE184K, but that neither of these mutations altered the intrinsic affinity for ACh. Thus there is an apparent electrostatic interaction between the epsilonE184 side chain and K+ ( approximately 1.7kBT), but not ACh+. The results are discussed in terms of multisite and induced-fit models of ligand binding to the AChR. PMID:9876135

  1. Efficient Expression of Functional (α6β2)2β3 AChRs in Xenopus Oocytes from Free Subunits Using Slightly Modified α6 Subunits

    PubMed Central

    Ley, Carson Kai-Kwong; Kuryatov, Alexander; Wang, Jingyi; Lindstrom, Jon Martin

    2014-01-01

    Human (α6β2)(α4β2)β3 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) are essential for addiction to nicotine and a target for drug development for smoking cessation. Expressing this complex AChR is difficult, but has been achieved using subunit concatamers. In order to determine what limits expression of α6* AChRs and to efficiently express α6* AChRs using free subunits, we investigated expression of the simpler (α6β2)2β3 AChR. The concatameric form of this AChR assembles well, but is transported to the cell surface inefficiently. Various chimeras of α6 with the closely related α3 subunit increased expression efficiency with free subunits and produced pharmacologically equivalent functional AChRs. A chimera in which the large cytoplasmic domain of α6 was replaced with that of α3 increased assembly with β2 subunits and transport of AChRs to the oocyte surface. Another chimera replacing the unique methionine 211 of α6 with leucine found at this position in transmembrane domain 1 of α3 and other α subunits increased assembly of mature subunits containing β3 subunits within oocytes. Combining both α3 sequences in an α6 chimera increased expression of functional (α6β2)2β3 AChRs to 12-fold more than with concatamers. This is pragmatically useful, and provides insights on features of α6 subunit structure that limit its expression in transfected cells. PMID:25068303

  2. Efficient expression of functional (α6β2)2β3 AChRs in Xenopus oocytes from free subunits using slightly modified α6 subunits.

    PubMed

    Ley, Carson Kai-Kwong; Kuryatov, Alexander; Wang, Jingyi; Lindstrom, Jon Martin

    2014-01-01

    Human (α6β2)(α4β2)β3 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) are essential for addiction to nicotine and a target for drug development for smoking cessation. Expressing this complex AChR is difficult, but has been achieved using subunit concatamers. In order to determine what limits expression of α6* AChRs and to efficiently express α6* AChRs using free subunits, we investigated expression of the simpler (α6β2)2β3 AChR. The concatameric form of this AChR assembles well, but is transported to the cell surface inefficiently. Various chimeras of α6 with the closely related α3 subunit increased expression efficiency with free subunits and produced pharmacologically equivalent functional AChRs. A chimera in which the large cytoplasmic domain of α6 was replaced with that of α3 increased assembly with β2 subunits and transport of AChRs to the oocyte surface. Another chimera replacing the unique methionine 211 of α6 with leucine found at this position in transmembrane domain 1 of α3 and other α subunits increased assembly of mature subunits containing β3 subunits within oocytes. Combining both α3 sequences in an α6 chimera increased expression of functional (α6β2)2β3 AChRs to 12-fold more than with concatamers. This is pragmatically useful, and provides insights on features of α6 subunit structure that limit its expression in transfected cells.

  3. 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.

  4. [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.

  5. Molecular mimicry and myasthenia gravis. An autoantigenic site of the acetylcholine receptor alpha-subunit that has biologic activity and reacts immunochemically with herpes simplex virus.

    PubMed Central

    Schwimmbeck, P L; Dyrberg, T; Drachman, D B; Oldstone, M B

    1989-01-01

    The large majority of patients with the autoimmune disease myasthenia gravis characteristically have detectable antibodies against the acetylcholine receptor (AChR). We used synthetic peptides to identify antibodies in sera of myasthenia gravis patients reactive with the human acetylcholine receptor (HuAChR) alpha-subunit, residues 160-167. Affinity purification of these antibodies, using the HuAChR alpha-subunit 157-170 peptide immobilized on thiopropyl-Sepharose, yielded IgG antibodies that bound to the native AChR and inhibited the binding of alpha-bungarotoxin to the receptor. The HuAChR alpha-subunit 160-167 peptide demonstrated specific immunological cross-reactivity with a shared homologous domain on herpes simplex virus glycoprotein D, residues 286-293, by both binding and inhibition studies. Thus, HuAChR alpha-subunit, residues 160-167, elicits antibodies in myasthenic patients that binds to the native AChR protein and is capable of eliciting a biologic effect. Immunologic cross-reactivity of this "self" epitope with herpes simplex virus suggest that this virus may be associated with the initiation of some cases of myasthenia. Images PMID:2551924

  6. 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

  7. Rabies virus binding to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit demonstrated by virus overlay protein binding assay.

    PubMed

    Gastka, M; Horvath, J; Lentz, T L

    1996-10-01

    A virus overlay protein binding assay was used to study binding of 125I-labelled rabies virus to the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) from Torpedo californica electric organ membranes. After gel electrophoresis of electric organ membranes and transfer of proteins to nitrocellulose, 125I-labelled alpha-bungarotoxin, a curaremimetic neurotoxin, bound to a 40 kDa band and 125I-labelled rabies virus bound to 51 kDa and 40 kDa bands. Binding of rabies virus to the 40 kDa band was inhibited by unlabelled alpha-bungarotoxin. In blots of affinity-purified AChR, labelled virus bound to the 40 kDa alpha subunit and was competed by alpha-bungarotoxin. Based on binding of rabies virus to the alpha subunit and the ability of alpha-bungarotoxin to compete for binding, rabies virus appears to bind to the neurotoxin-binding site of the nicotinic AChR alpha subunit.

  8. 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

  9. The α-syntrophin PH and PDZ domains scaffold acetylcholine receptors, utrophin and neuronal nitric oxide synthase at the neuromuscular junction

    PubMed Central

    Adams, Marvin E.; Anderson, Kendra N.E.; Froehner, Stanley C.

    2010-01-01

    At the neuromuscular junction (NMJ), the dystrophin protein complex provides a scaffold that functions to stabilize acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clusters. Syntrophin, a key component of that scaffold, is a multi-domain adapter protein that links a variety of signaling proteins and ion channels to the dystrophin protein complex. Without syntrophin, utrophin and neuronal nitric oxide synthase μ (nNOSμ) fail to localize to the NMJ and the AChRs are distributed abnormally. Here we investigate the contribution of syntrophin domains to AChR distribution and to localization of utrophin and nNOSμ at the NMJ. Transgenic mice expressing α-syntrophin lacking portions of the first pleckstrin homology (PH) domain (ΔPH1a or ΔPH1b) or the entire PDZ domain (ΔPDZ) were bred onto the α-syntrophin null background. As expected the ΔPDZ transgene did not restore the NMJ localization of nNOS. The ΔPH1a transgene did restore postsynaptic nNOS but surprisingly did not restore sarcolemmal nNOS (although sarcolemmal aquaporin-4 was restored). Mice lacking the α-syntrophin PDZ domain, or either half of the PH1 domain were able to restore utrophin to the NMJ but did not correct the aberrant AChR distribution of the α-syntrophin knockout mice. However, mice expressing both the transgenic ΔPDZ and the transgenic ΔPH1a constructs did restore normal AChR distribution, demonstrating that both domains are required but need not be confined within the same protein to function. We conclude that the PH1 and PDZ domains of α-syntrophin work in concert to facilitate the localization of AChRs and nNOS at the NMJ. PMID:20720107

  10. Achieving Acetylcholine Receptor Clustering in Tissue-Engineered Skeletal Muscle Constructs In vitro through a Materials-Directed Agrin Delivery Approach

    PubMed Central

    Scott, John B.; Ward, Catherine L.; Corona, Benjamin T.; Deschenes, Michael R.; Harrison, Benjamin S.; Saul, Justin M.; Christ, George J.

    2017-01-01

    Volumetric muscle loss (VML) can result from trauma, infection, congenital anomalies, or surgery, and produce permanent functional and cosmetic deficits. There are no effective treatment options for VML injuries, and recent advances toward development of muscle constructs lack the ability to achieve innervation necessary for long-term function. We sought to develop a proof-of-concept biomaterial construct that could achieve acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clustering on muscle-derived cells (MDCs) in vitro. The approach consisted of the presentation of neural (Z+) agrin from the surface of microspheres embedded with a fibrin hydrogel to muscle cells (C2C12 cell line or primary rat MDCs). AChR clustering was spatially restricted to areas of cell (C2C12)-microsphere contact when the microspheres were delivered in suspension or when they were incorporated into a thin (2D) fibrin hydrogel. AChR clusters were observed from 16 to 72 h after treatment when Z+ agrin was adsorbed to the microspheres, and for greater than 120 h when agrin was covalently coupled to the microspheres. Little to no AChR clustering was observed when agrin-coated microspheres were delivered from specially designed 3D fibrin constructs. However, cyclic stretch in combination with agrin-presenting microspheres led to dramatic enhancement of AChR clustering in cells cultured on these 3D fibrin constructs, suggesting a synergistic effect between mechanical strain and agrin stimulation of AChR clustering in vitro. These studies highlight a strategy for maintaining a physiological phenotype characterized by motor endplates of muscle cells used in tissue engineering strategies for muscle regeneration. As such, these observations may provide an important first step toward improving function of tissue-engineered constructs for treatment of VML injuries. PMID:28123368

  11. Achieving Acetylcholine Receptor Clustering in Tissue-Engineered Skeletal Muscle Constructs In vitro through a Materials-Directed Agrin Delivery Approach.

    PubMed

    Scott, John B; Ward, Catherine L; Corona, Benjamin T; Deschenes, Michael R; Harrison, Benjamin S; Saul, Justin M; Christ, George J

    2016-01-01

    Volumetric muscle loss (VML) can result from trauma, infection, congenital anomalies, or surgery, and produce permanent functional and cosmetic deficits. There are no effective treatment options for VML injuries, and recent advances toward development of muscle constructs lack the ability to achieve innervation necessary for long-term function. We sought to develop a proof-of-concept biomaterial construct that could achieve acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clustering on muscle-derived cells (MDCs) in vitro. The approach consisted of the presentation of neural (Z+) agrin from the surface of microspheres embedded with a fibrin hydrogel to muscle cells (C2C12 cell line or primary rat MDCs). AChR clustering was spatially restricted to areas of cell (C2C12)-microsphere contact when the microspheres were delivered in suspension or when they were incorporated into a thin (2D) fibrin hydrogel. AChR clusters were observed from 16 to 72 h after treatment when Z+ agrin was adsorbed to the microspheres, and for greater than 120 h when agrin was covalently coupled to the microspheres. Little to no AChR clustering was observed when agrin-coated microspheres were delivered from specially designed 3D fibrin constructs. However, cyclic stretch in combination with agrin-presenting microspheres led to dramatic enhancement of AChR clustering in cells cultured on these 3D fibrin constructs, suggesting a synergistic effect between mechanical strain and agrin stimulation of AChR clustering in vitro. These studies highlight a strategy for maintaining a physiological phenotype characterized by motor endplates of muscle cells used in tissue engineering strategies for muscle regeneration. As such, these observations may provide an important first step toward improving function of tissue-engineered constructs for treatment of VML injuries.

  12. Acetylcholine receptors from human muscle as pharmacological targets for ALS therapy

    PubMed Central

    Palma, Eleonora; Reyes-Ruiz, Jorge Mauricio; Lopergolo, Diego; Roseti, Cristina; Bertollini, Cristina; Ruffolo, Gabriele; Cifelli, Pierangelo; Onesti, Emanuela; Limatola, Cristina; Miledi, Ricardo; Inghilleri, Maurizio

    2016-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease affecting motor neurons that leads to progressive paralysis of skeletal muscle. Studies of ALS have revealed defects in expression of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) in skeletal muscle that occur even in the absence of motor neuron anomalies. The endocannabinoid palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) modified the clinical conditions in one ALS patient, improving muscle force and respiratory efficacy. By microtransplanting muscle membranes from selected ALS patients into Xenopus oocytes, we show that PEA reduces the desensitization of acetylcholine-evoked currents after repetitive neurotransmitter application (i.e., rundown). The same effect was observed using muscle samples from denervated (non-ALS) control patients. The expression of human recombinant α1β1γδ (γ-AChRs) and α1β1εδ AChRs (ε-AChRs) in Xenopus oocytes revealed that PEA selectively affected the rundown of ACh currents in ε-AChRs. A clear up-regulation of the α1 subunit in muscle from ALS patients compared with that from non-ALS patients was found by quantitative PCR, but no differential expression was found for other subunits. Clinically, ALS patients treated with PEA showed a lower decrease in their forced vital capacity (FVC) over time as compared with untreated ALS patients, suggesting that PEA can enhance pulmonary function in ALS. In the present work, data were collected from a cohort of 76 ALS patients and 17 denervated patients. Our results strengthen the evidence for the role of skeletal muscle in ALS pathogenesis and pave the way for the development of new drugs to hamper the clinical effects of the disease. PMID:26929355

  13. Acetylcholine receptors from human muscle as pharmacological targets for ALS therapy.

    PubMed

    Palma, Eleonora; Reyes-Ruiz, Jorge Mauricio; Lopergolo, Diego; Roseti, Cristina; Bertollini, Cristina; Ruffolo, Gabriele; Cifelli, Pierangelo; Onesti, Emanuela; Limatola, Cristina; Miledi, Ricardo; Inghilleri, Maurizio

    2016-03-15

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease affecting motor neurons that leads to progressive paralysis of skeletal muscle. Studies of ALS have revealed defects in expression of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) in skeletal muscle that occur even in the absence of motor neuron anomalies. The endocannabinoid palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) modified the clinical conditions in one ALS patient, improving muscle force and respiratory efficacy. By microtransplanting muscle membranes from selected ALS patients into Xenopus oocytes, we show that PEA reduces the desensitization of acetylcholine-evoked currents after repetitive neurotransmitter application (i.e., rundown). The same effect was observed using muscle samples from denervated (non-ALS) control patients. The expression of human recombinant α1β1γδ (γ-AChRs) and α1β1εδ AChRs (ε-AChRs) in Xenopus oocytes revealed that PEA selectively affected the rundown of ACh currents in ε-AChRs. A clear up-regulation of the α1 subunit in muscle from ALS patients compared with that from non-ALS patients was found by quantitative PCR, but no differential expression was found for other subunits. Clinically, ALS patients treated with PEA showed a lower decrease in their forced vital capacity (FVC) over time as compared with untreated ALS patients, suggesting that PEA can enhance pulmonary function in ALS. In the present work, data were collected from a cohort of 76 ALS patients and 17 denervated patients. Our results strengthen the evidence for the role of skeletal muscle in ALS pathogenesis and pave the way for the development of new drugs to hamper the clinical effects of the disease.

  14. 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.

  15. Conotoxins Targeting Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: An Overview

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Sorbs1 and -2 Interact with CrkL and Are Required for Acetylcholine Receptor Cluster Formation

    PubMed Central

    Hallock, Peter T.; Chin, Sherry; Blais, Steven; Neubert, Thomas A.

    2015-01-01

    Crk and CrkL are noncatalytic adaptor proteins necessary for the formation of neuromuscular synapses which function downstream of muscle-specific kinase (MuSK), a receptor tyrosine kinase expressed in skeletal muscle, and the MuSK binding protein Dok-7. How Crk/CrkL regulate neuromuscular endplate formation is not known. To better understand the roles of Crk/CrkL, we identified CrkL binding proteins using mass spectrometry and have identified Sorbs1 and Sorbs2 as two functionally redundant proteins that associate with the initiating MuSK/Dok-7/Crk/CrkL complex, regulate acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clustering in vitro, and are localized at synapses in vivo. PMID:26527617

  2. 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.

  3. Myopathic changes detected by quantitative electromyography in patients with MuSK and AChR positive myasthenia gravis.

    PubMed

    Nikolic, Ana; Basta, Ivana; Stojanovic, Vidosava Rakocevic; Stevic, Zorica; Peric, Stojan; Lavrnic, Dragana

    2016-05-01

    Myopathic changes are frequent a electrophysiological finding in patients with muscle specific tyrosine kinase (MuSK) positive myasthenia gravis (MG). The aim of this study was to explore the importance of quantitative electromyography (EMG) in the detection of myopathic changes in MuSK MG patients. Classical and quantitative EMG were performed in 31 MuSK and 28 acetylcholine receptor (AChR) positive MG patients, matched by sex, age, disease duration and severity. Classical EMG revealed the presence of myopathic changes more frequently in MuSK MG compared to AChR MG patients, especially in the facial muscles. Quantitative EMG registered myopathic lesions more frequently than classical EMG, but the frequency was similar between MuSK and AChR MG patients. Quantitative EMG revealed myopathic changes in the majority of both MuSK and AChR positive MG patients. This examination is sensitive, but it cannot be used to differentiate between MG patients belonging to the different disease groups. It should not be used in isolation. Rather, it should complement classical EMG in the detection of myopathic changes.

  4. 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.

  5. The muscarinic acetylcholine receptor agonist BuTAC mediates antipsychotic-like effects via the M4 subtype.

    PubMed

    Watt, Marla L; Rorick-Kehn, Linda; Shaw, David B; Knitowski, Karen M; Quets, Anne T; Chesterfield, Amy K; McKinzie, David L; Felder, Christian C

    2013-12-01

    The generation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) subtype-selective compounds has been challenging, requiring use of nonpharmacological approaches, such as genetically engineered animals, to deepen our understanding of the potential that members of the muscarinic receptor subtype family hold as therapeutic drug targets. The muscarinic receptor agonist 'BuTAC' was previously shown to exhibit efficacy in animal models of psychosis, although the particular receptor subtype(s) responsible for such activity was unclear. Here, we evaluate the in vitro functional agonist and antagonist activity of BuTAC using an assay that provides a direct measure of G protein activation. In addition, we employ the conditioned avoidance response paradigm, an in vivo model predictive of antipsychotic activity, and mouse genetic deletion models to investigate which presynaptic mAChR subtype mediates the antipsychotic-like effects of BuTAC. Our results show that, in vitro, BuTAC acts as a full agonist at the M2AChR and a partial agonist at the M1 and M4 receptors, with full antagonist activity at M3- and M5AChRs. In the mouse conditioned avoidance response (CAR) assay, BuTAC exhibits an atypical antipsychotic-like profile by selectively decreasing avoidance responses at doses that do not induce escape failures. CAR results using M2(-/-), M4(-/-), and M2/M4 (M2/M4(-/-)) mice found that the effects of BuTAC were near completely lost in M2/M4(-/-) double-knockout mice and potency of BuTAC was right-shifted in M4(-/-) as compared with wild-type and M2(-/-) mice. The M2/M4(-/-) mice showed no altered sensitivity to the antipsychotic effects of either haloperidol or clozapine, suggesting that these compounds mediate their actions in CAR via a non-mAChR-mediated mechanism. These data support a role for the M4AChR subtype in mediating the antipsychotic-like activity of BuTAC and implicate M4AChR agonism as a potential novel therapeutic mechanism for ameliorating symptoms associated with

  6. Mapping of the acetylcholine binding site of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor: ( sup 3 H)nicotine as an agonist photoaffinity label

    SciTech Connect

    Middleton, R.E.; Cohen, J.B. )

    1991-07-16

    The agonist ({sup 3}H)nicotine was used as a photoaffinity label for the acetylcholine binding sties on the Torpedo nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR). ({sup 3}H)Nicotine binds at equilibrium with K{sub eq} = 0.6 {mu}M to the agonist binding sites. Irradiation with 254-nm light of AChR-rich membranes equilibrated with ({sup 3}H)nicotine resulted in covalent incorporation into the {alpha}- and {gamma}-subunits, which was inhibited by agonists and competitive antagonists but not by noncompetitive antagonists. Inhibition of labeling by d-tubocurarine demonstrated that the {alpha}-subunit was labeled via both agonist sites but the {gamma}-subunit was labeled only via the site that binds d-tubocurarine with high affinity. Chymotryptic digestion of the {alpha}-subunit confirmed that Try-198 was the principal amino acid labeled by ({sup 3}H)nicotine. This confirmation required a novel radiosequencing strategy employing o-phthalaldehyde ({sup 3}H)Nicotine, which is the first photoaffinity agonist used, labels primarily Tyr-198 in contrast to competitive antagonist affinity labels, which label primarily Tyr-190 and Cys-192/Cys-193.

  7. Ocular myasthenia gravis induced by human acetylcholine receptor ϵ subunit immunization in HLA DR3 transgenic mice.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiaorong; Tuzun, Erdem; Saini, Shamsher S; Wang, Jun; Li, Jing; Aguilera-Aguirre, Leopoldo; Huda, Ruksana; Christadoss, Premkumar

    2015-12-01

    Extraocular muscles (EOM) are preferentially involved in myasthenia gravis (MG) and acetylcholine receptor (AChR) antibody positive MG patients may occasionally present with isolated ocular symptoms. Although experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG) induced by whole AChR immunization closely mimics clinical and immunopathological aspects of MG, EOM are usually not affected. We have previously developed an EAMG model, which imitates EOM symptoms of MG by immunization of human leukocyte antigen (HLA) transgenic mice with α or γ-subunits of human AChR (H-AChR). To investigate the significance of the ϵ-subunit in ocular MG, we immunized HLA-DR3 and HLA-DQ8 transgenic mice with recombinant H-AChR ϵ-subunit expressed in Escherichia coli. HLA-DR3 transgenic mice showed significantly higher clinical ocular and generalized MG severity scores and lower grip strength values than HLA-DQ8 mice. H-AChR ϵ-subunit-immunized HLA-DR3 transgenic mice had higher serum anti-AChR antibody (IgG, IgG1, IgG2b, IgG2c and IgM) levels, neuromuscular junction IgG and complement deposit percentages than ϵ-subunit-immunized HLA-DQ8 transgenic mice. Control mice immunized with E. coli extract or complete Freund adjuvant (CFA) did not show clinical and immunopathological features of ocular and generalized EAMG. Lymph node cells of ϵ-subunit-immunized HLA-DR3 mice showed significantly higher proliferative responses than those of ϵ-subunit-immunized HLA-DQ8 mice, crude E. coli extract-immunized and CFA-immunized transgenic mice. Our results indicate that the human AChR ϵ-subunit is capable of inducing myasthenic muscle weakness. Diversity of the autoimmune responses displayed by mice expressing different HLA class II molecules suggests that the interplay between HLA class II alleles and AChR subunits might have a profound impact on the clinical course of MG.

  8. Rapid antidepressant actions of scopolamine: Role of medial prefrontal cortex and M1-subtype muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Navarria, Andrea; Wohleb, Eric S; Voleti, Bhavya; Ota, Kristie T; Dutheil, Sophie; Lepack, Ashley E; Dwyer, Jason M; Fuchikami, Manabu; Becker, Astrid; Drago, Filippo; Duman, Ronald S

    2015-10-01

    Clinical studies demonstrate that scopolamine, a non-selective muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAchR) antagonist, produces rapid therapeutic effects in depressed patients, and preclinical studies report that the actions of scopolamine require glutamate receptor activation and the mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1). The present study extends these findings to determine the role of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and specific muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (M-AchR) subtypes in the actions of scopolamine. The administration of scopolamine increases the activity marker Fos in the mPFC, including the infralimbic (IL) and prelimbic (PrL) subregions. Microinfusions of scopolamine into either the IL or the PrL produced significant antidepressant responses in the forced swim test, and neuronal silencing of IL or PrL blocked the antidepressant effects of systemic scopolamine. The results also demonstrate that the systemic administration of a selective M1-AChR antagonist, VU0255035, produced an antidepressant response and stimulated mTORC1 signaling in the PFC, similar to the actions of scopolamine. Finally, we used a chronic unpredictable stress model as a more rigorous test of rapid antidepressant actions and found that a single dose of scopolamine or VU0255035 blocked the anhedonic response caused by CUS, an effect that requires the chronic administration of typical antidepressants. Taken together, these findings indicate that mPFC is a critical mediator of the behavioral actions of scopolamine and identify the M1-AChR as a therapeutic target for the development of novel and selective rapid-acting antidepressants.

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

    PubMed Central

    Marinou, Martha; Tzartos, Socrates J

    2003-01-01

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

  10. A single gene codes for the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha-subunit in Torpedo marmorata: structural and developmental implications.

    PubMed Central

    Klarsfeld, A; Devillers-Thiéry, A; Giraudat, J; Changeux, J P

    1984-01-01

    We have used Southern blot hybridization to analyze the genomic structure encoding the alpha-subunit of the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) in Torpedo marmorata, with cDNA probes isolated from the electric organ. Four different radiolabelled probes, corresponding to various parts of the alpha-subunit mRNA, hybridized to several genomic fragments of T. marmorata DNA generated by digestion with the restriction enzymes SstI, PvuII and PstI. The same hybridization pattern was observed after washing the blots under low- or high-stringency conditions. As a check for detection sensitivity of heterologous sequences, the same probes were hybridized to PvuII-digested chicken DNA, revealing bands at low stringency which disappeared at higher stringencies. Unambiguously, two of our probes (one of them entirely within the coding region) hybridized to a single genomic fragment from T. marmorata DNA. This feature, as well as the results of an extensive study of the whole hybridization pattern, points towards the uniqueness of alpha-subunit-specific sequences in the genome of T. marmorata. Since overall more bands were found than expected from the cDNA sequence, this alpha-subunit gene must be split by several introns (at least four, possibly more). The length of this gene is at least 20 kb. The existence of a single alpha-subunit gene is consistent with the absence of chemical heterogeneity in the NH2-terminal sequence of the purified alpha-chain, and supports the view that the two alpha-chains belonging to one AChR oligomer have an identical primary structure. It also suggests that localization and stabilization of the AChR in well-defined post-synaptic areas of T. marmorata electric organ basically relies, during development, on 'epigenetic' mechanisms. Images Fig. 2. Fig. 3. Fig. 4. PMID:6323168

  11. Induced formation and maturation of acetylcholine receptor clusters in a defined 3D bio-artificial muscle.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lin; Shansky, Janet; Vandenburgh, Herman

    2013-12-01

    Dysfunction of the neuromuscular junction is involved in a wide range of muscular diseases. The development of neuromuscular junction through which skeletal muscle is innervated requires the functional modulation of acetylcholine receptor (AchR) clustering on myofibers. However, studies on AchR clustering in vitro are mostly done on monolayer muscle cell culture, which lacks a three-dimensional (3D) structure, a prominent limitation of the two-dimensional (2D) system. To enable a better understanding on the structure-function correlation underlying skeletal muscle innervation, a muscle system with a well-defined geometry mimicking the in vivo muscular setting is needed. Here, we report a 3D bio-artificial muscle (BAM) bioengineered from green fluorescent protein-transduced C3H murine myoblasts as a novel in vitro tissue-based model for muscle innervation studies. Our cell biological and molecular analysis showed that this BAM is structurally similar to in vivo muscle tissue and can reach the perinatal differentiation stage, higher than does 2D culture. Effective clustering and morphological maturation of AchRs on BAMs induced by agrin and laminin indicate the functional activity and plasticity of this BAM system toward innervation. Taken together, our results show that the BAM provides a favorable 3D environment that at least partially recapitulates real physiological skeletal muscle with regard to innervation. With a convenience of fabrication and manipulation, this 3D in vitro system offers a novel model for studying mechanisms underlying skeletal muscle innervation and testing therapeutic strategies for relevant nervous and muscular diseases.

  12. Acetylcholine sensitivity of biphasic Ca2+ mobilization induced by nicotinic receptor activation at the mouse skeletal muscle endplate

    PubMed Central

    Dezaki, Katsuya; Kimura, Ikuko

    1998-01-01

    Acetylcholine (ACh) was locally applied onto the endplate region in a mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm muscle preparation to measure intracellular free calcium ([Ca2+]i) entry through nicotinic ACh receptors (AChRs) by use of Ca2+-aequorin luminescence.ACh (0.1–3 mM, 20 μl) elicited biphasic elevation of [Ca2+]i (fast and slow Ca2+ mobilization) in muscle cells. The peak amplitude of the slow Ca2+ mobilization (not accompanied by twitch tension) was concentration-dependently increased by ACh, whereas that of the fast component (accompanied by twitch tension) reached a maximum response at a lower concentration (0.1 mM) of applied ACh.A pulse of nicotinic agonists, (−)-nicotine (10 mM) and 1,1-dimethyl-4-phenyl-piperazinium (10 mM), but not a muscarinic agonist pilocarpine (10 mM), also elicited a biphasic Ca2+ signal.Even though ACh release from motor nerve endings was blocked by botulinum toxin (5 μg, bolus i.p. before isolation of the tissue), the generation of both a fast and slow Ca2+ component caused by ACh application was observed.These results strongly suggest that ACh locally applied onto the endplate region of skeletal muscle induces a slow Ca2+ signal reflecting Ca2+ entry through a postsynaptic nicotinic AChR, which has a low sensitivity to transmitter ACh. PMID:9579738

  13. Guidelines for standard preclinical experiments in the mouse model of myasthenia gravis induced by acetylcholine receptor immunization.

    PubMed

    Tuzun, Erdem; Berrih-Aknin, Sonia; Brenner, Talma; Kusner, Linda L; Le Panse, Rozen; Yang, Huan; Tzartos, Socrates; Christadoss, Premkumar

    2015-08-01

    Myasthenia gravis (MG) is an autoimmune disorder characterized by generalized muscle weakness due to neuromuscular junction (NMJ) dysfunction brought by acetylcholine receptor (AChR) antibodies in most cases. Although steroids and other immunosuppressants are effectively used for treatment of MG, these medications often cause severe side effects and a complete remission cannot be obtained in many cases. For pre-clinical evaluation of more effective and less toxic treatment methods for MG, the experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG) induced by Torpedo AChR immunization has become one of the standard animal models. Although numerous compounds have been recently proposed for MG mostly by using the active immunization EAMG model, only a few have been proven to be effective in MG patients. The variability in the experimental design, immunization methods and outcome measurements of pre-clinical EAMG studies make it difficult to interpret the published reports and assess the potential for application to MG patients. In an effort to standardize the active immunization EAMG model, we propose standard procedures for animal care conditions, sampling and randomization of mice, experimental design and outcome measures. Utilization of these standard procedures might improve the power of pre-clinical EAMG experiments and increase the chances for identifying promising novel treatment methods that can be effectively translated into clinical trials for MG.

  14. 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.

  15. Neuronal acetylcholine receptors in Drosophila: the ARD protein is a component of a high-affinity alpha-bungarotoxin binding complex.

    PubMed Central

    Schloss, P; Hermans-Borgmeyer, I; Betz, H; Gundelfinger, E D

    1988-01-01

    The ard gene of Drosophila melanogaster encodes a structural homologue of vertebrate nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChR) and is expressed exclusively in nervous tissue. To study the nature of the ARD protein, antibodies were raised against fusion constructs containing two regions of this polypeptide. One segment is putatively extracellular (amino acids 65-212), the other domain is exposed to the cytoplasm (amino acids 305-444). The ARD antisera obtained served to investigate the physical relationship between the ARD protein and alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-Btx) binding sites occurring in Drosophila. Two different high-affinity binding sites for [125I]alpha-Btx, a highly potent antagonist of vertebrate muscle AChR, were detected in fly head membranes. Equilibrium binding and kinetic studies revealed Kd values of approximately 0.1 nM (site 1) and approximately 4 nM (site 2). The estimated maximal binding (Bmax) was approximately 240 and 1080 fmol/mg protein respectively. Both sites exhibited a nicotinic-cholinergic pharmacology. Immunoprecipitation experiments with the ARD antisera indicated that the ARD protein is associated with the [125I]alpha-Btx binding site 1 only. These data support the previously postulated hypothesis that the ARD protein is part of an alpha-Btx binding neuronal AChR of Drosophila. Furthermore, they indicate heterogeneity in nicotinic-cholinergic binding sites in the insect nervous system. PMID:3141150

  16. 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.

  17. Acetylcholine receptor channels are present in undifferentiated satellite cells but not in embryonic myoblasts in culture.

    PubMed

    Cossu, G; Eusebi, F; Grassi, F; Wanke, E

    1987-09-01

    The expression and the physiological properties of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) of mononucleated myogenic cells, isolated from either embryonic or adult muscle of the mouse, have been investigated using the gigaohm seal patch-clamp technique in combination with immunocytochemistry (with an anti-myosin antibody) and alpha-bungarotoxin binding techniques. Undifferentiated (myosin-negative) embryonic myoblasts, grown either in mass culture or under clonal conditions, were found to be unresponsive to ACh and did not bind alpha-bungarotoxin. On the contrary, undifferentiated satellite cells (from adult muscle) exhibited channels activated by ACh and alpha-bungarotoxin binding sites similar to those observed in differentiated (myosin-positive) embryonic myoblasts and myotubes. Two classes of ACh-activated channels with different opening frequencies were identified. The major class of channels had a conductance of about 42 pS and mean open time of 3.1-8.2 msec. The minor class of channels had smaller conductance (about 17 pS) and similar open time. During differentiation, the conductance of the two channels did not change significantly, while channel lifetime became shorter in myotubes derived from satellite cells but not in myotubes derived from embryonic myoblasts. The relative proportion of small over large channels was significantly larger in embryonic than in adult myogenic cells.

  18. 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.

  19. ARIA/HRG regulates AChR epsilon subunit gene expression at the neuromuscular synapse via activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase and Ras/MAPK pathway

    PubMed Central

    1996-01-01

    AChR-inducing activity (ARIA)/heregulin, a ligand for erbB receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs), is likely to be one nerve-supplied signal that induces expression of acetylcholine receptor (AChR) genes at the developing neuromuscular junction. Since some RTKs act through Ras and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K), we investigated the role of these pathways in ARIA signaling. Expression of activated Ras or Raf mimicked ARIA-induction of AChR epsilon subunit genes in muscle cells; whereas dominant negative Ras or Raf blocked the effect of ARIA. ARIA rapidly activated erk1 and erk2 and inhibition of both erks also abolished the effect of ARIA. ARIA stimulated association of PI3K with erbB3, expression of an activated PI3K led to ARIA-independent AChR epsilon subunit expression, and inhibition of PI3K abolished the action of ARIA. Thus, synaptic induction of AChR genes requires activation of both Ras/MAPK and PI3K signal transduction pathways. PMID:8707830

  20. 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

  1. Effects of a monoclonal anti-acetylcholine receptor antibody on the avian end-plate.

    PubMed Central

    Maselli, R A; Nelson, D J; Richman, D P

    1989-01-01

    1. The effects of anti-acetylcholine receptor (AChR) monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) 370 and 132A on miniature end-plate potentials (MEPPs) and end-plate currents (EPCs) in the posterior latissimus dorsi muscle of adult chickens were investigated. 2. After incubation of the electrophysiological preparation with mAb 370 (5-50 micrograms/ml), which blocks both agonist (carbamylcholine) and alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BTX) binding and induces a hyperacute form of experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG), MEPP and EPC amplitudes were irreversibly reduced. 3. This effect was not associated with any significant change in the time constant describing EPC decay (tau EPC), current reversal potential, or the voltage dependence of tau EPC. The tau EPC at -80 mV was 5.9 +/- 0.6 ms before incubation with mAb 370 (50 micrograms/ml) and 6.0 +/- 0.9 ms afterwards. Current reversal potential was -3.9 +/- 0.4 mV before mAb incubation and -4.8 +/- 1.5 mV afterwards. The change in membrane potential required to produce an e-fold change in tau EPC was 128 +/- 2.3 mV before antibody incubation compared to 125 +/- 6.6 mV after incubation. 4. A second anti-AChR mAb, 132A (50 micrograms/ml), which is capable of inducing the classically described form of EAMG without blocking agonist or alpha-BTX binding, or inducing hyperacute EAMG, produced no significant change in MEPP amplitude, EPC amplitude, tau EPC or EPC reversal potentials. 5. The mAb 370 (50 micrograms/ml) induced a partially reversible decrease of the quantal content of the neurally evoked end-plate potential (EPP). This effect was not observed with mAb 132A, (+)tubocurarine (10(-7)-10(-5) g/ml) or an irrelevant anti-oestrogen receptor mAb. 6. These data suggest that the rapid onset of weakness observed in chicken hatchlings after the injection of mAb 370 (Gomez & Richman, 1983) can be attributed to a combined effect of a block of acetylcholine (ACh)-induced ion channel activity in the postsynaptic membrane and a reduction of

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. A Comparison of MyoD1 and Fetal Acetylcholine Receptor Expression in Childhood Tumors and Normal Tissues

    PubMed Central

    Gattenloehner, Stefan; Dockhorn-Dworniczak, Barbara; Leuschner, Ivo; Vincent, Angela; Müller-Hermelink, Hans-Konrad; Marx, Alexander

    1999-01-01

    Detection of minimal residual disease or micrometastases in rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS) has been an unresolved problem in 70 to 80% of RMS patients. In patients with alveolar type RMS, which harbors chromosomal translocations and produces tumor-specific fusion products, polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based diagnosis is clear-cut. In the more frequent embryonal RMS, however, no such PCR-based marker has been described. Recently it has been suggested that the PCR-based detection of MyoD1 may be a valuable adjunct in the diagnosis of minimal disease in embryonal RMS. We report here that MyoD1 mRNA is not specific for RMS, but can be amplified from ex vivo samples of many other childhood tumors and some normal tissues. By contrast, simultaneous amplification of α and γ subunit message of the fetal type acetylcholine receptor (AChR), by a novel duplex PCR, and the quantification of both transcripts resulting in a α/γAChR ratio <1 was 100% sensitive in alveolar (n = 8) and embryonal (n = 10) RMS. Moreover, γAChR was not detected in other childhood (n = 27) or adult tumors (n = 12), or normal tissues, except thymus. The high sensitivity and specificity of the method were confirmed by the successful detection of five cases of cytologically or molecularly verified RMS bone marrow micrometastases among 47 bone marrow samples from childhood tumor patients. By contrast, MyoD1 showed no amplification because of its low level of transcription. We conclude that mRNA of the fetal type AChR is a more specific and (about 100 times) more sensitive marker for the molecular detection of RMS than MyoD1, and thus appears to be a promising candidate for the detection of minimal disease in RMS lacking tumor-specific translocations. PMID:11272905

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  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. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Positive allosteric modulators of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors affect neither the function of other ligand- and voltage-gated ion channels and acetylcholinesterase, nor β-amyloid content.

    PubMed

    Arias, Hugo R; Ravazzini, Federica; Targowska-Duda, Katarzyna M; Kaczor, Agnieszka A; Feuerbach, Dominik; Boffi, Juan C; Draczkowski, Piotr; Montag, Dirk; Brown, Brandon M; Elgoyhen, Ana Belén; Jozwiak, Krzysztof; Puia, Giulia

    2016-07-01

    The activity of positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs), including 3-furan-2-yl-N-p-tolyl-acrylamide (PAM-2), 3-furan-2-yl-N-o-tolylacrylamide (PAM-3), and 3-furan-2-yl-N-phenylacrylamide (PAM-4), was tested on a variety of ligand- [i.e., human (h) α7, rat (r) α9α10, hα3-containing AChRs, mouse (m) 5-HT3AR, and several glutamate receptors (GluRs)] and voltage-gated (i.e., sodium and potassium) ion channels, as well as on acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and β-amyloid (Aβ) content. The functional results indicate that PAM-2 inhibits hα3-containing AChRs (IC50=26±6μM) with higher potency than that for NR1aNR2B and NR1aNR2A, two NMDA-sensitive GluRs. PAM-2 affects neither the activity of m5-HT3ARs, GluR5/KA2 (a kainate-sensitive GluR), nor AChE, and PAM-4 does not affect agonist-activated rα9α10 AChRs. Relevant clinical concentrations of PAM-2-4 do not inhibit Nav1.2 and Kv3.1 ion channels. These PAMs slightly enhance the activity of GluR1 and GluR2, two AMPA-sensitive GluRs. PAM-2 does not change the levels of Aβ42 in an Alzheimer's disease mouse model (i.e., 5XFAD). The molecular docking and dynamics results using the hα7 model suggest that the active sites for PAM-2 include the intrasubunit (i.e., PNU-120596 locus) and intersubunit sites. These results support our previous study showing that these PAMs are selective for the α7 AChR, and clarify that the procognitive/promnesic/antidepressant activity of PAM-2 is not mediated by other targets.

  5. 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

  6. Pharmacological and kinetic properties of alpha 4 beta 2 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Charnet, P; Labarca, C; Cohen, B N; Davidson, N; Lester, H A; Pilar, G

    1992-01-01

    1. Co-injection of RNA synthesized from cloned neuronal acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits (alpha 4 and beta 2) in Xenopus oocytes produced functional receptors. In macroscopic voltage-clamp experiments, the agonist-induced current exhibited a strong inward rectification. 2. Voltage jumps from +50 mV to more negative potentials produced relaxations of the agonist-induced current with a single exponential time course. The relaxation rate constant was only weakly voltage dependent. 3. At the single-channel level, three conductances were recorded of 12, 22 and 34 pS. Their burst durations were similar and varied only weakly with voltage (e-fold for 120 to 370 mV), consistent with the poorly voltage-dependent relaxation rate constants. However, the burst durations were less than 10 ms, or less than 1/5 the value expected from voltage-jump relaxations. 4. Hexamethonium (Hex, 0.5 to 8 microM) inhibited the agonist-induced current and produced voltage-jump relaxations characterized by a rapid conductance increase and a slower conductance decrease. Analysis of these relaxations suggested that the Hex-receptor interaction is open-channel blockade characterized by a forward binding rate of 1 x 10(7) M-1 s-1 and a dissociation rate constant of about 25 s-1. 5. For the relaxations produced by QX222, the slowest phase was a conductance increase, suggesting that the dissociation rate constant for QX222 is 10-30-fold greater than for Hex. 6. Hex but not QX222 produced an additional use-dependent blockade that was manifest during repetitive hyperpolarizing pulses. 7. With mouse muscle ACh receptors expressed in oocytes, the blockade by Hex did not depend strongly on voltage. Neither Hex nor QX222 produced appreciable use-dependent block on muscle ACh receptors. 8. Of the four conditions studied (neuronal and muscle receptors, Hex and QX222), only the blockade of the neuronal AChR by Hex is characterized by a residence time longer than the normal open time. 9. It is concluded

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Agonist-induced changes in the structure of the acetylcholine receptor M2 regions revealed by photoincorporation of an uncharged nicotinic noncompetitive antagonist.

    PubMed

    White, B H; Cohen, J B

    1992-08-05

    To characterize structural changes induced in the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) by agonists, we have mapped the sites of photoincorporation of the cholinergic noncompetitive antagonist 3-(trifluoromethyl)-3-(m-[125I]iodophenyl)diazirine (]125I]TID) in the presence and absence of 50 microM carbamylcholine. [125I]TID binds to the AChR with similar affinity under both these conditions, but agonist inhibits photoincorporation into all subunits by greater than 75% (White, B. H., Howard, S., Cohen, S. G., and Cohen, J. B. (1991) J. Biol. Chem. 266, 21595-21607). [125I]TID-labeled sites on the beta- and delta-subunits were identified by amino-terminal sequencing of both cyanogen bromide (CNBr) and tryptic fragments purified by Tricine sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis followed by reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography. In the absence of agonist, [125I]TID specifically labels homologous aliphatic residues (beta L-257, delta L-265, beta V-261, and delta V-269) in the M2 region of both subunits. In the presence of agonist, labeling of these residues is reduced approximately 90%, and the distribution of labeled residues is broadened to include a homologous set of serine residues at the amino terminus of M2. In the beta-subunit residues beta S-250, beta S-254, beta L-257, and beta V-261 are all labeled in the presence of carbamylcholine. This pattern of labeling supports an alpha-helical model for M2 with the labeled face forming the ion channel lumen. The observed redistribution of label in the resting and desensitized states provides the first direct evidence for an agonist-dependent rearrangement of the M2 helices. The efficient labeling of the resting state channel in a region capable of structural change also suggests a plausible model for AChR gating in which the aliphatic residues labeled by [125I]TID form a permeability barrier to the passage of ions. We also report increased labeling of the M1 region of the delta

  16. 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.

  17. Allosteric modulation of alpha4beta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by HEPES.

    PubMed

    Weltzin, Maegan M; Huang, Yanzhou; Schulte, Marvin K

    2014-06-05

    A number of new positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) have been reported that enhance responses of neuronal alpha7 and alpha4beta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes to orthosteric ligands. PAMs represent promising new leads for the development of therapeutic agents for disorders involving alterations in nicotinic neurotransmission including Autism, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. During our recent studies of alpha4beta2 PAMs, we identified a novel effect of 4-(2-hydroxyethyl)-1-piperazineethanesulfonic acid (HEPES). The effects of HEPES were evaluated in a phosphate buffered recording solution using two-electrode voltage clamp techniques and alpha4beta2 and alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Acetylcholine induced responses of high-sensitivity alpha4beta2 receptors were potentiated 190% by co-exposure to HEPES. Responses were inhibited at higher concentrations (bell-shaped concentration/response curve). Coincidentally, at concentrations of HEPES typically used in oocyte recording (5-10mM), the potentiating effects of HEPES are matched by its inhibitory effects, thus producing no net effect. Mutagenesis results suggest HEPES potentiates the high-sensitivity stoichiometry of the alpha4beta2 receptors through action at the beta2+/beta2- interface and is dependent on residue beta2D218. HEPES did not potentiate low-sensitivity alpha4beta2 receptors and did not produce any observable effect on acetylcholine induced responses on alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Rabies virus binding to an acetylcholine receptor alpha-subunit peptide.

    PubMed

    Lentz, T L

    1990-04-01

    The binding of 125I-labeled rabies virus to a synthetic peptide comprising residues 173-204 of the alpha 1-subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor was investigated. Binding of rabies virus to the receptor peptide was dependent on pH, could be competed with by unlabeled homologous virus particles, and was saturable. Synthetic peptides of snake venom, curaremimetic neurotoxins and of the structurally similar segment of the rabies virus glycoprotein, were effective in competing with labeled virus binding to the receptor peptide at micromolar concentrations. Similarly, synthetic peptides of the binding domain on the acetylcholine receptor competed for binding. These findings suggest that both rabies virus and neurotoxins bind to residues 173-204 of the alpha 1-subunit of the acetylcholine receptor. Competition studies with shorter alpha-subunit peptides within this region indicate that the highest affinity virus binding determinants are located within residues 179-192. A rat nerve alpha 3-subunit peptide, that does not bind alpha-bungarotoxin, inhibited binding of virus to the alpha 1 peptide, suggesting that rabies binds to neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. These studies indicate that synthetic peptides of the glycoprotein binding domain and of the receptor binding domain may represent useful antiviral agents by targeting the recognition event between the viral attachment protein and the host cell receptor, and inhibiting attachment of virus to the receptor.

  1. Structure of the human M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor bound to an antagonist.

    PubMed

    Haga, Kazuko; Kruse, Andrew C; Asada, Hidetsugu; Yurugi-Kobayashi, Takami; Shiroishi, Mitsunori; Zhang, Cheng; Weis, William I; Okada, Tetsuji; Kobilka, Brian K; Haga, Tatsuya; Kobayashi, Takuya

    2012-01-25

    The parasympathetic branch of the autonomic nervous system regulates the activity of multiple organ systems. Muscarinic receptors are G-protein-coupled receptors that mediate the response to acetylcholine released from parasympathetic nerves. Their role in the unconscious regulation of organ and central nervous system function makes them potential therapeutic targets for a broad spectrum of diseases. The M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (M2 receptor) is essential for the physiological control of cardiovascular function through activation of G-protein-coupled inwardly rectifying potassium channels, and is of particular interest because of its extensive pharmacological characterization with both orthosteric and allosteric ligands. Here we report the structure of the antagonist-bound human M2 receptor, the first human acetylcholine receptor to be characterized structurally, to our knowledge. The antagonist 3-quinuclidinyl-benzilate binds in the middle of a long aqueous channel extending approximately two-thirds through the membrane. The orthosteric binding pocket is formed by amino acids that are identical in all five muscarinic receptor subtypes, and shares structural homology with other functionally unrelated acetylcholine binding proteins from different species. A layer of tyrosine residues forms an aromatic cap restricting dissociation of the bound ligand. A binding site for allosteric ligands has been mapped to residues at the entrance to the binding pocket near this aromatic cap. The structure of the M2 receptor provides insights into the challenges of developing subtype-selective ligands for muscarinic receptors and their propensity for allosteric regulation.

  2. Structure of the human M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor bound to an antagonist

    SciTech Connect

    Haga, Kazuko; Kruse, Andrew C.; Asada, Hidetsugu; Yurugi-Kobayashi, Takami; Shiroishi, Mitsunori; Zhang, Cheng; Weis, William I.; Okada, Tetsuji; Kobilka, Brian K.; Haga, Tatsuya; Kobayashi, Takuya

    2012-03-15

    The parasympathetic branch of the autonomic nervous system regulates the activity of multiple organ systems. Muscarinic receptors are G-protein-coupled receptors that mediate the response to acetylcholine released from parasympathetic nerves. Their role in the unconscious regulation of organ and central nervous system function makes them potential therapeutic targets for a broad spectrum of diseases. The M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (M2 receptor) is essential for the physiological control of cardiovascular function through activation of G-protein-coupled inwardly rectifying potassium channels, and is of particular interest because of its extensive pharmacological characterization with both orthosteric and allosteric ligands. Here we report the structure of the antagonist-bound human M2 receptor, the first human acetylcholine receptor to be characterized structurally, to our knowledge. The antagonist 3-quinuclidinyl-benzilate binds in the middle of a long aqueous channel extending approximately two-thirds through the membrane. The orthosteric binding pocket is formed by amino acids that are identical in all five muscarinic receptor subtypes, and shares structural homology with other functionally unrelated acetylcholine binding proteins from different species. A layer of tyrosine residues forms an aromatic cap restricting dissociation of the bound ligand. A binding site for allosteric ligands has been mapped to residues at the entrance to the binding pocket near this aromatic cap. The structure of the M2 receptor provides insights into the challenges of developing subtype-selective ligands for muscarinic receptors and their propensity for allosteric regulation.

  3. The anthelmintic pyrantel acts as a low efficacious agonist and an open-channel blocker of mammalian acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Rayes, D; De Rosa, M J; Spitzmaul, G; Bouzat, C

    2001-08-01

    Pyrantel is an anthelmintic which acts as an agonist of nicotinic receptors (AChRs) of nematodes and exerts its therapeutic effects by depolarizing their muscle membranes. Here we explore at the single-channel level the action of pyrantel at mammalian muscle AChR. AChR currents are elicited by pyrantel. However, openings do not appear in clearly identifiable clusters over a range of pyrantel concentrations (1-300 microM). The mean open time decreases as a function of concentration, indicating an additional open-channel block. Single-channel recordings in the presence of high ACh concentrations and pyrantel demonstrate that the anthelmintic acts as a high-affinity open-channel blocker. When analyzed in terms of a sequential blocking scheme, the calculated forward rate constant for the blocking process is 8x10(7) M(-1) x s(-1), the apparent dissociation constant is 8 microM at a membrane potential of -70 mV and the process is voltage dependent. Pyrantel displaces alpha-bungarotoxin binding but the concentration dependence of equilibrium binding is shifted towards higher concentrations with respect to that of ACh binding. Thus, by acting at the binding site pyrantel activates mammalian AChRs with low efficacy, and by sterical blockade of the pore, the activated channels are then rapidly inhibited.

  4. Ligand-binding domain of an α7-nicotinic receptor chimera and its complex with agonist.

    PubMed

    Li, Shu-Xing; Huang, Sun; Bren, Nina; Noridomi, Kaori; Dellisanti, Cosma D; Sine, Steven M; Chen, Lin

    2011-09-11

    The α(7) acetylcholine receptor (AChR) mediates pre- and postsynaptic neurotransmission in the central nervous system and is a potential therapeutic target in neurodegenerative, neuropsychiatric and inflammatory disorders. We determined the crystal structure of the extracellular domain of a receptor chimera constructed from the human α(7) AChR and Lymnaea stagnalis acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP), which shares 64% sequence identity and 71% similarity with native α(7). We also determined the structure with bound epibatidine, a potent AChR agonist. Comparison of the structures revealed molecular rearrangements and interactions that mediate agonist recognition and early steps in signal transduction in α(7) AChRs. The structures further revealed a ring of negative charge within the central vestibule, poised to contribute to cation selectivity. Structure-guided mutational studies disclosed distinctive contributions to agonist recognition and signal transduction in α(7) AChRs. The structures provide a realistic template for structure-aided drug design and for defining structure-function relationships of α(7) AChRs.

  5. 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.

  6. Molecular forms and subunit structure of the acetylcholine receptor in the central nervous system of insects.

    PubMed

    Breer, H; Kleene, R; Hinz, G

    1985-12-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor as probed by alpha-bungarotoxin binding has been isolated from detergent-solubilized ganglionic membrane preparations from the insect, Locusta migratoria. The isolation and characterization of the receptor protein was achieved by preparation of membrane fragments, extraction by sodium deoxycholate, centrifugation on sucrose density gradient, affinity chromatography, gel electrophoresis, and immunoblotting. The purified receptor protein migrated as a single band on polyacrylamide when native (Mr = 250,000 to 300,000) but also under denaturing conditions (Mr = 65,000) and cross-reacted with some monoclonal antibodies against the Torpedo receptor. In immunohistochemical approaches using polyclonal antibodies the acetylcholine receptor antigenic sites could topochemically be identified at very distinct zones in the neuropil of locust ganglia. The results suggest that the acetylcholine receptor in the central nervous system of insects represents an oligomeric complex composed of four identical or very similar subunits and thus may represent a prototype of the recently proposed homo-oligomeric ancestral acetylcholine receptor.

  7. 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.

  8. Unique pharmacology of heteromeric α7β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Zwart, Ruud; Strotton, Merrick; Ching, Jennifer; Astles, Peter C; Sher, Emanuele

    2014-03-05

    α7β2 is a novel type of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor shown to be uniquely expressed in cholinergic neurons of the basal forebrain and in hippocampal interneurons. We have compared the pharmacological properties of recombinant homomeric α7 and heteromeric α7β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in order to reveal the pharmacological consequences of β2 subunit incorporation into the pentamer. The non-selective agonist epibatidine did not distinguish α7β2 from α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, but three other non-selective agonists (nicotine, cytisine and varenicline) were less efficacious on α7β2 than on α7. A more dramatic change in efficacy was seen with eight different selective α7 agonists. Because of their very low intrinsic efficacy, some compounds became very efficacious functional antagonists at α7β2 receptors. Three α4β2 nicotinic receptor selective agonists that were not active on α7, were also inactive on α7β2, and dihydro-β-erythroidine, an α4β2 receptor-preferring antagonist, inhibited α7 and α7β2 in a similar manner. These results reveal significant effects of β2 incorporation in determining the relative efficacy of several non-selective and α7 selective agonists, and also show that incorporation of β2 subunits does not cause a shift to a more “β2-like” pharmacology of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

  9. Schwann cells and myasthenia gravis. Preferential uptake of soluble and membrane-bound AChR by normal and immortalized Schwann cells, and immunogenic presentation to AChR-specific T line lymphocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Y. P.; Porter, S.; Wekerle, H.

    1990-01-01

    The normal neuromuscular synapse is formed by the intimate association of nerve endings, postsynaptic end-plate foldings in the muscle fiber, and nonmyelinating Schwann cells (SC) sealing the synaptic ramifications. Because SC have been recognized recently to have an immunogenic potential inducible to present protein autoantigens to autoimmune T lymphocytes, and considering their close proximity to the acetylcholine receptor (AChR)-bearing postsynaptic membranes, presentation of soluble and membrane vesicle-bound AChR to appropriate T cells was investigated. Short-term monolayer cultures of SC isolated from neonatal rat sciatic nerves, as well as cells of an immortalized SC line of similar origin, were fully able to present the relevant molecular epitopes to major histocompatibility complex (MHC) compatible AChR-specific T line lymphocytes immunogenically. Presentation of AChR was restricted by RT1.B (I-A) MHC class II products. Both types of cultured rat SC were inducible to expression of MHC class I and II products, and they were able to phagocytose AChR-enriched membrane vesicles preferentially. In contrast, phagocytosis of latex particles by SC was negligible. These data qualify perisynaptic SC as potential presenter cells of autoimmunogenic AChR in myasthenia gravis. Thus, SC may play a critical and as-yet unpredicted regulatory role in the cellular pathogenesis of myasthenia gravis. Images Figure 5 Figure 3 Figure 6 PMID:1688688

  10. Recent Duplication and Functional Divergence in Parasitic Nematode Levamisole-Sensitive Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Duguet, Thomas B.; Charvet, Claude L.; Forrester, Sean G.; Wever, Claudia M.; Dent, Joseph A.; Neveu, Cedric; Beech, Robin N.

    2016-01-01

    Helminth parasites rely on fast-synaptic transmission in their neuromusculature to experience the outside world and respond to it. Acetylcholine plays a pivotal role in this and its receptors are targeted by a wide variety of both natural and synthetic compounds used in human health and for the control of parasitic disease. The model, Caenorhabditis elegans is characterized by a large number of acetylcholine receptor subunit genes, a feature shared across the nematodes. This dynamic family is characterized by both gene duplication and loss between species. The pentameric levamisole-sensitive acetylcholine receptor has been characterized from C. elegans, comprised of five different subunits. More recently, cognate receptors have been reconstituted from multiple parasitic nematodes that are found to vary in subunit composition. In order to understand the implications of receptor composition change and the origins of potentially novel drug targets, we investigated a specific example of subunit duplication based on analysis of genome data for 25 species from the 50 helminth genome initiative. We found multiple independent duplications of the unc-29, acetylcholine receptor subunit, where codon substitution rate analysis identified positive, directional selection acting on amino acid positions associated with subunit assembly. Characterization of four gene copies from a model parasitic nematode, Haemonchus contortus, demonstrated that each copy has acquired unique functional characteristics based on phenotype rescue of transgenic C. elegans and electrophysiology of receptors reconstituted in Xenopus oocytes. We found evidence that a specific incompatibility has evolved for two subunits co-expressed in muscle. We demonstrated that functional divergence of acetylcholine receptors, driven by directional selection, can occur more rapidly than previously thought and may be mediated by alteration of receptor assembly. This phenomenon is common among the clade V parasitic

  11. Cellular approaches to the interaction between cannabinoid receptor ligands and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Oz, Murat; Al Kury, Lina; Keun-Hang, Susan Yang; Mahgoub, Mohamed; Galadari, Sehamuddin

    2014-05-15

    Cannabinoids are among the earliest known drugs to humanity. Cannabis plant contains various phytochemicals that bind to cannabinoid receptors. In addition, synthetic and endogenously produced cannabinoids (endocannabinoids) constitute other classes of cannabinoid receptor ligands. Although many pharmacological effects of these cannabinoids are mediated by the activation of cannabinoid receptors, recent studies indicate that cannabinoids also modulate the functions of various integral membrane proteins including ion channels, receptors, neurotransmitter transporters, and enzymes by mechanism(s) not involving the activation of known cannabinoid receptors. Currently, the mechanisms of these effects were not fully understood. However, it is likely that direct actions of cannabinoids are closely linked to their lipophilic structures. This report will focus on the actions of cannabinoids on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and will examine the results of recent studies in this field. In addition some mechanistic approaches will be provided. The results discussed in this review indicate that, besides cannabinoid receptors, further molecular targets for cannabinoids exist and that these targets may represent important novel sites to alter neuronal excitability.

  12. Synthetic peptides in the study of the interaction of rabies virus and the acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Lentz, T L; Hawrot, E; Donnelly-Roberts, D; Wilson, P T

    1988-01-01

    The neurotropism of some viruses may be explained in part by the attachment of these viruses to host cell receptors that are present on or even largely restricted to neurons. Rabies virus is an RNA virus that, after a period of replication in muscle, gains access to the central nervous system, where it selectively infects certain neuronal populations. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor occurs in high density at the neuromuscular junction and is present in the central nervous system. Although several different cell surface constituents may act as attachment determinants for rabies, direct binding of radioactively labeled virus to affinity-purified acetylcholine receptor has been demonstrated. Binding of virus to the receptor was saturable and inhibited by up to 50% by alpha-bungarotoxin, a snake venom neurotoxin that binds at or near the acetylcholine binding site on the receptor. The molecular basis for the virus-receptor interaction may lie in an amino acid sequence similarity between the snake venom neurotoxins and a segment of the rabies virus glycoprotein. Two peptides (10 and 13 residues) of the rabies virus glycoprotein and homologous bungarotoxin peptides were synthesized and tested for ability to compete with labeled alpha-bungarotoxin for binding to the acetylcholine receptor. The peptides were found to compete with toxin binding with affinities comparable to those of the cholinergic ligands d-tubocurarine and nicotine. These findings indicate that a segment of the rabies virus glycoprotein interacts with the acetylcholine receptor at or near the acetylcholine binding site of the receptor. The similarity between the virus glycoprotein and the neurotoxin was further evidenced by the cross reaction of antibody raised against the virus 10-mer with the bungarotoxin 10-mer. Binding of rabies virus to the acetylcholine receptor or to other neuronal bungarotoxin-binding proteins may be related to the neurotropism of this virus. In addition, knowledge of both

  13. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor X-ray structures: potential implications for drug development.

    PubMed

    Kruse, Andrew C; Hu, Jianxin; Kobilka, Brian K; Wess, Jürgen

    2014-06-01

    Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor antagonists are widely used as bronchodilating drugs in pulmonary medicine. The therapeutic efficacy of these agents depends on the blockade of M3 muscarinic receptors expressed on airway smooth muscle cells. All muscarinic antagonists currently used as bronchodilating agents show high affinity for all five muscarinic receptor subtypes, thus increasing the likelihood of unwanted side effects. Recent X-ray crystallographic studies have provided detailed structural information about the nature of the orthosteric muscarinic binding site (the conventional acetylcholine binding site) and an 'outer' receptor cavity that can bind allosteric (non-orthosteric) drugs. These new findings should guide the development of selective M3 receptor blockers that have little or no effect on other muscarinic receptor subtypes.

  14. Development of a photoactivatable allosteric ligand for the m1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Davie, Briana J; Sexton, Patrick M; Capuano, Ben; Christopoulos, Arthur; Scammells, Peter J

    2014-10-15

    The field of G protein-coupled receptor drug discovery has benefited greatly from the structural and functional insights afforded by photoactivatable ligands. One G protein-coupled receptor subfamily for which photoactivatable ligands have been developed is the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor family, though, to date, all such ligands have been designed to target the orthosteric (endogenous ligand) binding site of these receptors. Herein we report the synthesis and pharmacological investigation of a novel photoaffinity label, MIPS1455 (4), designed to bind irreversibly to an allosteric site of the M1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor; a target of therapeutic interest for the treatment of cognitive deficits. MIPS1455 may be a valuable molecular tool for further investigating allosteric interactions at this receptor.

  15. Inhibition of human α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by cyclic monoterpene carveol.

    PubMed

    Lozon, Yosra; Sultan, Ahmed; Lansdell, Stuart J; Prytkova, Tatiana; Sadek, Bassem; Yang, Keun-Hang Susan; Howarth, Frank Christopher; Millar, Neil S; Oz, Murat

    2016-04-05

    Cyclic monoterpenes are a group of phytochemicals with antinociceptive, local anesthetic, and anti-inflammatory actions. Effects of cyclic monoterpenes including vanilin, pulegone, eugenole, carvone, carvacrol, carveol, thymol, thymoquinone, menthone, and limonene were investigated on the functional properties of the cloned α7 subunit of the human nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Monoterpenes inhibited the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in the order carveol>thymoquinone>carvacrol>menthone>thymol>limonene>eugenole>pulegone≥carvone≥vanilin. Among the monoterpenes, carveol showed the highest potency on acetylcholine-induced responses, with IC50 of 8.3µM. Carveol-induced inhibition was independent of the membrane potential and could not be reversed by increasing the concentration of acetylcholine. In line with functional experiments, docking studies indicated that cyclic monoterpenes such as carveol may interact with an allosteric site located in the α7 transmembrane domain. Our results indicate that cyclic monoterpenes inhibit the function of human α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, with varying potencies.

  16. Defective Acetylcholine Receptor Subunit Switch Precedes Atrophy of Slow-Twitch Skeletal Muscle Fibers Lacking ERK1/2 Kinases in Soleus Muscle

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shuo; Seaberg, Bonnie; Paez-Colasante, Ximena; Rimer, Mendell

    2016-01-01

    To test the role of extracellular-signal regulated kinases 1 and 2 (ERK1/2) in slow-twitch, type 1 skeletal muscle fibers, we studied the soleus muscle in mice genetically deficient for myofiber ERK1/2. Young adult mutant soleus was drastically wasted, with highly atrophied type 1 fibers, denervation at most synaptic sites, induction of “fetal” acetylcholine receptor gamma subunit (AChRγ), reduction of “adult” AChRε, and impaired mitochondrial biogenesis and function. In weanlings, fiber morphology and mitochondrial markers were mostly normal, yet AChRγ upregulation and AChRε downregulation were observed. Synaptic sites with fetal AChRs in weanling muscle were ~3% in control and ~40% in mutants, with most of the latter on type 1 fibers. These results suggest that: (1) ERK1/2 are critical for slow-twitch fiber growth; (2) a defective γ/ε-AChR subunit switch, preferentially at synapses on slow fibers, precedes wasting of mutant soleus; (3) denervation is likely to drive this wasting, and (4) the neuromuscular synapse is a primary subcellular target for muscle ERK1/2 function in vivo. PMID:27934942

  17. Development of the electromotor system of Torpedo marmorata: distribution of extracellular matrix and cytoskeletal components during acetylcholine receptor focalization.

    PubMed

    Richardson, G P; Fiedler, W; Fox, G Q

    1987-03-01

    A combination of direct fluorescence and indirect immunofluorescence microscopy has been used to compare the distribution of the acetylcholine receptor with the distribution of major cytoskeletal and extracellular matrix components during electrocyte differentiation in the electric organs of Torpedo marmorata. Laminin, fibronectin and extracellular matrix proteoglycan are always more extensively distributed around the differentiating cell than the acetylcholine receptor-rich patch that forms on the ventral surface of the cell. The distribution of acetylcholinesterase within the ventral surface of the differentiating electrocyte closely resembles the distribution of the acetylcholine receptor. Areas of apparently high acetylcholine receptor density within the ventrally forming acetylcholine receptor-rich patch are always areas of apparently high extracellular matrix proteoglycan density but are not always areas of high laminin or fibronectin density. Desmin levels appear to increase at the onset of differentiation and desmin initially accumulates in the ventral pole of each myotube as it begins to form an electrocyte. During differentiation F-actin-positive filament bundles are observed that extend from the nuclei down to the ventrally forming acetylcholine receptor-rich patch. Most filament bundles terminate in the acetylcholine receptor-rich region of the cell membrane. Electron-microscopic autoradiography suggests that the filament bundles attach to the membrane at sites where small acetylcholine receptor clusters are found. The results of this study suggest that, out of the four extracellular matrix components studied, only the distribution of acetylcholinesterase (which may be both matrix- and membrane-bound at this stage) closely parallels that of the acetylcholine receptor, and that F-actin filament bundles terminate in a region of the cell that is becoming an area of high acetylcholine receptor density.

  18. Use of intact rat brain cells as a model to study regulation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, J.H.; El-Fakahany, E.E.

    1985-08-12

    Intact rat brain cells were dissociated and used to study the regulation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors upon exposure to muscarinic receptor agonists. Incubation of cells with carbamylcholine resulted in a time-dependent decrease in subsequent (/sup 3/H)N-methylscopolamine specific binding, an effect which reached a steady state after 3 hr at 37/sup 0/C. This effect of carbamylcholine was dependent on the concentration of the agonist in the incubation medium and was due to a reduction in the maximal binding capacity of the receptor with no decrease in the affinity of the remaining receptors. This preparation might be useful in future studies to elucidate the mechanisms underlying the regulation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the central nervous system. 20 references, 3 tables.

  19. Inhibition of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, a novel facet in the pleiotropic activities of snake venom phospholipases A2.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  20. miR-434-3p and DNA hypomethylation co-regulate eIF5A1 to increase AChRs and to improve plasticity in SCT rat skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    Shang, Fei-Fei; Xia, Qing-Jie; Liu, Wei; Xia, Lei; Qian, Bao-Jiang; You, Ling; He, Mu; Yang, Jin-Liang; Wang, Ting-Hua

    2016-01-01

    Acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) serve as connections between motor neurons and skeletal muscle and are essential for recovery from spinal cord transection (SCT). Recently, microRNAs have emerged as important potential biotherapeutics for several diseases; however, whether miRNAs operate in the modulation of AChRs remains unknown. We found increased AChRs numbers and function scores in rats with SCT; these increases were reduced following the injection of a eukaryotic translation initiation factor 5A1 (eIF5A1) shRNA lentivirus into the hindlimb muscle. Then, high-throughput screening for microRNAs targeting eIF5A1 was performed, and miR-434-3p was found to be robustly depleted in SCT rat skeletal muscle. Furthermore, a highly conserved miR-434-3p binding site was identified within the mRNA encoding eIF5A1 through bioinformatics analysis and dual-luciferase assay. Overexpression or knockdown of miR-434-3p in vivo demonstrated it was a negative post-transcriptional regulator of eIF5A1 expression and influenced AChRs expression. The microarray-enriched Gene Ontology (GO) terms regulated by miR-434-3p were muscle development terms. Using a lentivirus, one functional gene (map2k6) was confirmed to have a similar function to that of miR-434-3p in GO terms. Finally, HRM and MeDIP-PCR analyses revealed that DNA demethylation also up-regulated eIF5A1 after SCT. Consequently, miR-434-3p/eIF5A1 in muscle is a promising potential biotherapy for SCI repair. PMID:26964899

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

    EPA Science Inventory

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

  2. 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...

  3. The Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: The Founding Father of the Pentameric Ligand-gated Ion Channel Superfamily*

    PubMed Central

    Changeux, Jean-Pierre

    2012-01-01

    A critical event in the history of biological chemistry was the chemical identification of the first neurotransmitter receptor, the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Disciplines as diverse as electrophysiology, pharmacology, and biochemistry joined together in a unified and rational manner with the common goal of successfully identifying the molecular device that converts a chemical signal into an electrical one in the nervous system. The nicotinic receptor has become the founding father of a broad family of pentameric membrane receptors, paving the way for their identification, including that of the GABAA receptors. PMID:23038257

  4. Pharmacological and biochemical characterization of the D-1 dopamine receptor mediating acetylcholine release in rabbit retina

    SciTech Connect

    Hensler, J.G.; Cotterell, D.J.; Dubocovich, M.L.

    1987-12-01

    Superfusion with dopamine (0.1 microM-10 mM) evokes calcium-dependent (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine release from rabbit retina labeled in vitro with (/sup 3/H)choline. This effect is antagonized by the D-1 dopamine receptor antagonist SCH 23390. Activation or blockade of D-2 dopamine, alpha-2 or beta receptors did not stimulate or attenuate the release of (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine from rabbit retina. Dopamine receptor agonists evoke the release of (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine with the following order of potency: apomorphine less than or equal to SKF(R)82526 < SKF 85174 < SKF(R)38393 less than or equal to pergolide less than or equal to dopamine (EC50 = 4.5 microM) < SKF(S)82526 less than or equal to SKF(S)38393. Dopamine receptor antagonists inhibited the dopamine-evoked release of (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine: SCH 23390 (IC50 = 1 nM) < (+)-butaclamol less than or equal to cis-flupenthixol < fluphenazine < perphenazine < trans-flupenthixol < R-sulpiride. The potencies of dopamine receptor agonists and antagonists at the dopamine receptor mediating (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine release is characteristic of the D-1 dopamine receptor. These potencies were correlated with the potencies of dopamine receptor agonists and antagonists at the D-1 dopamine receptor in rabbit retina as labeled by (/sup 3/H)SCH 23390, or as determined by adenylate cyclase activity. (/sup 3/H)SCH 23390 binding in rabbit retinal membranes was stable, saturable and reversible. Scatchard analysis of (/sup 3/H)SCH 23390 saturation data revealed a single high affinity binding site (Kd = 0.175 +/- 0.002 nM) with a maximum binding of 482 +/- 12 fmol/mg of protein. The potencies of dopamine receptor agonists to stimulate (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine release were correlated with their potencies to stimulate adenylate cyclase (r = 0.784, P less than .05, n = 7) and with their affinities at (/sup 3/H)SCH 23390 binding sites (r = 0.755, P < .05, n = 8).

  5. 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.

  6. Binding of N-methylscopolamine to the extracellular domain of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Jakubík, Jan; Randáková, Alena; Zimčík, Pavel; El-Fakahany, Esam E.; Doležal, Vladimír

    2017-01-01

    Interaction of orthosteric ligands with extracellular domain was described at several aminergic G protein-coupled receptors, including muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. The orthosteric antagonists quinuclidinyl benzilate (QNB) and N-methylscopolamine (NMS) bind to the binding pocket of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor formed by transmembrane α-helices. We show that high concentrations of either QNB or NMS slow down dissociation of their radiolabeled species from all five subtypes of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, suggesting allosteric binding. The affinity of NMS at the allosteric site is in the micromolar range for all receptor subtypes. Using molecular modelling of the M2 receptor we found that E172 and E175 in the second extracellular loop and N419 in the third extracellular loop are involved in allosteric binding of NMS. Mutation of these amino acids to alanine decreased affinity of NMS for the allosteric binding site confirming results of molecular modelling. The allosteric binding site of NMS overlaps with the binding site of some allosteric, ectopic and bitopic ligands. Understanding of interactions of NMS at the allosteric binding site is essential for correct analysis of binding and action of these ligands. PMID:28091608

  7. Binding of N-methylscopolamine to the extracellular domain of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jakubík, Jan; Randáková, Alena; Zimčík, Pavel; El-Fakahany, Esam E.; Doležal, Vladimír

    2017-01-01

    Interaction of orthosteric ligands with extracellular domain was described at several aminergic G protein-coupled receptors, including muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. The orthosteric antagonists quinuclidinyl benzilate (QNB) and N-methylscopolamine (NMS) bind to the binding pocket of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor formed by transmembrane α-helices. We show that high concentrations of either QNB or NMS slow down dissociation of their radiolabeled species from all five subtypes of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, suggesting allosteric binding. The affinity of NMS at the allosteric site is in the micromolar range for all receptor subtypes. Using molecular modelling of the M2 receptor we found that E172 and E175 in the second extracellular loop and N419 in the third extracellular loop are involved in allosteric binding of NMS. Mutation of these amino acids to alanine decreased affinity of NMS for the allosteric binding site confirming results of molecular modelling. The allosteric binding site of NMS overlaps with the binding site of some allosteric, ectopic and bitopic ligands. Understanding of interactions of NMS at the allosteric binding site is essential for correct analysis of binding and action of these ligands.

  8. Sigma receptor ligand N,N'-di-(ortho-tolyl)guanidine inhibits release of acetylcholine in the guinea pig ileum.

    PubMed

    Cambell, B G; Keana, J F; Weber, E

    1991-11-26

    The inhibition of stimulated contractions of the guinea pig ileum longitudinal muscle/myenteric plexus preparation by sigma receptor ligands has been previously described. In this study, the stimulated release of [3H]acetylcholine from cholinergic nerve terminals in this same preparation was monitored in the presence and absence of sigma receptor ligands. N,N'-Di-(orthotolyl)guanidine (DTG) and other compounds selective for the sigma receptor inhibited stimulated [3H]acetylcholine release. These results suggest that their inhibition of stimulated contractions in this preparation was mediated by inhibition of acetylcholine release.

  9. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor CHRNA5/A3/B4 gene cluster: Dual role in nicotine addiction and lung cancer

    PubMed Central

    Improgo, Ma. Reina D.; Scofield, Michael D.; Tapper, Andrew R.; Gardner, Paul D.

    2010-01-01

    More than 1 billion people around the world smoke, with 10 million cigarettes sold every minute. Cigarettes contain thousands of harmful chemicals including the psychoactive compound, nicotine. Nicotine addiction is initiated by the binding of nicotine to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, ligand-gated cation channels activated by the endogenous neurotransmitter, acetylcholine. These receptors serve as prototypes for all ligand-gated ion channels and have been extensively studied in an attempt to elucidate their role in nicotine addiction. Many of these studies have focused on heteromeric nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing α4 and β2 subunits and homomeric nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing the α7 subunit, two of the most abundant subtypes expressed in the brain. Recently however, a series of linkage analyses, candidate-gene analyses and genome-wide association studies have brought attention to three other members of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor family: the α5, α3 and β4 subunits. The genes encoding these subunits lie in a genomic cluster that contains variants associated with increased risk for several diseases including nicotine dependence and lung cancer. The underlying mechanisms for these associations have not yet been elucidated but decades of research on the nicotinic receptor gene family as well as emerging data provide insight on how these receptors may function in pathological states. Here, we review this body of work, focusing on the clustered nicotinic acetylcholine receptor genes and evaluating their role in nicotine addiction and lung cancer. PMID:20685379

  10. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor-interacting proteins (mAChRIPs): targeting the receptorsome.

    PubMed

    Borroto-Escuela, D O; Agnati, Luigi F; Fuxe, Kjell; Ciruela, F

    2012-01-01

    Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors comprise a large family of G protein-coupled receptors that are involved in the regulation of many important functions of the central and peripheral nervous system. To achieve such a large range of physiological effects, these receptors interact with a large array of accessory proteins including scaffold molecules, ion channels and enzymes that operate as molecular transducers of muscarinic function in addition to the canonical heterotrimeric G proteins. Interestingly, as demonstrated for others G protein-coupled receptors, this type of receptor is also able to oligomerise, a fact that has been shown to play a critical role in their subcellular distribution, trafficking, and fine tuning of cholinergic signalling. On the other hand, the specificity of these receptor interactions may be largely determined by the occurrence of precise protein-interacting motifs, posttranslational modifications, and the differential tissue distribution and stoichiometry of the receptor-interacting proteins. Thus, the exhaustive cataloguing and documentation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptor-interacting proteins and the grasp of their specific function will explain key physiological differences in muscarinic-mediated cholinergic transmission. Overall, a better comprehension of the muscarinic receptor interactome will have a significant impact on the cholinergic pharmacology and thus provide previously unrealised opportunities to achieve greater specificity in muscarinic-related drug discovery and diagnostics.

  11. Expression of muscarinic acetylcholine and dopamine receptor mRNAs in rat basal ganglia

    SciTech Connect

    Weiner, D.M. Howard Hughes Medical Inst., Bethesda, MD ); Levey, A.I. Johns Hopkins Univ., Baltimore, MD ); Brann, M.R. )

    1990-09-01

    Within the basal ganglia, acetylcholine and dopamine play a central role in the extrapyramidal control of motor function. The physiologic effects of these neurotransmitters are mediated by a diversity of receptor subtypes, several of which have now been cloned. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors are encoded by five genes (m1-m5), and of the two known dopamine receptor subtypes (D1 and D2) the D2 receptor gene has been characterized. To gain insight into the physiological roles of each of these receptor subtypes, the authors prepared oligodeoxynucleotide probes to localize receptor subtype mRNAs within the rat striatum and substantia nigra by in situ hybridization histochemistry. Within the striatum, three muscarinic (m1, m2, m4) receptor mRNAs and the D2 receptor mRNA were detected. The m1 mRNA was expressed in most neurons; the m2 mRNA, in neurons which were both very large and rare; and the m4 and D2 mRNAs, in 40-50% of the neurons, one-third of which express both mRNAs. Within the substantia nigra, pars compacta, only the m5 and D2 mRNAs were detected, and most neurons expressed both mRNAs. These data provide anatomical evidence for the identity of the receptor subtypes which mediate the diverse effects of muscarinic and dopaminergic drugs on basal ganglia function.

  12. Abundance, distribution, mobility and oligomeric state of M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in live cardiac muscle

    PubMed Central

    Nenasheva, Tatiana A.; Neary, Marianne; Mashanov, Gregory I.; Birdsall, Nigel J.M.; Breckenridge, Ross A.; Molloy, Justin E.

    2013-01-01

    M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors modulate cardiac rhythm via regulation of the inward potassium current. To increase our understanding of M2 receptor physiology we used Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence Microscopy to visualize individual receptors at the plasma membrane of transformed CHOM2 cells, a cardiac cell line (HL-1), primary cardiomyocytes and tissue slices from pre- and post-natal mice. Receptor expression levels between individual cells in dissociated cardiomyocytes and heart slices were highly variable and only 10% of murine cardiomyocytes expressed muscarinic receptors. M2 receptors were evenly distributed across individual cells and their density in freshly isolated embryonic cardiomyocytes was ~ 1 μm− 2, increasing at birth (to ~ 3 μm− 2) and decreasing back to ~ 1 μm− 2 after birth. M2 receptors were primarily monomeric but formed reversible dimers. They diffused freely at the plasma membrane, moving approximately 4-times faster in heart slices than in cultured cardiomyocytes. Knowledge of receptor density and mobility has allowed receptor collision rate to be modeled by Monte Carlo simulations. Our estimated encounter rate of 5–10 collisions per second, may explain the latency between acetylcholine application and GIRK channel opening. PMID:23357106

  13. Use of Monoclonal Antibodies to Study the Structure and Function of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors on Electric Organ and Muscle and to Determine the Structure of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors on Neurons

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-03-16

    observed when the sections were coincubated in 400 nrL cold mAb 270. Adjacent Nissl -stained sections were used to identify labeled structures...affinity reagent for the acetylcholine receptor binding site. J Biol Chem 259:11662-11665. 7. Whiting PJ, JM Lindstrom. 1986 . Purification and...characterization of a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from chick brain. Biochemistry 2502082-2093. 8. Whiting PJ, JM Lindstrom. 1986 . Pharmacological

  14. Acetylcholine receptor-inducing factor from chicken brain increases the level of mRNA encoding the receptor. alpha. subunit

    SciTech Connect

    Harris, D.A.; Falls, D.L.; Dill-Devor, R.M.; Fischbach, G.D. )

    1988-03-01

    A 42-kDa glycoprotein isolated from chicken brain, referred to as acetylcholine receptor-inducing activity (ARIA), that stimulates the rate of incorporation of acetylcholine receptors into the surface of chicken myotubes may play a role in the nerve-induced accumulation of receptors at developing neuromuscular synapses. Using nuclease-protection assays, the authors have found that ARIA causes a 2- to 16-fold increase in the level of mRNA encoding the {alpha} subunit of the receptor, with little or no change in the levels of {gamma}- and {delta}-subunit messengers. ARIA also increases the amount of a putative nuclear precursor of {alpha}-subunit mRNA, consistent with an activation of gene transcription. These results suggest that the concentration of {alpha} subunit may limit the rate of biosynthesis of the acetylcholine receptors in chicken myotubes. They also indicate that neuronal factors can regulate the expression of receptor subunit genes in a selective manner. Tetrodotoxin, 8-bromo-cAMP, and forskolin also increase the amount of {alpha}-subunit mRNA, with little change in the amount of {gamma}- and {delta}-subunit mRNAs. Unlike ARIA, however, these agents have little effect on the concentration of the {alpha}-subunit nuclear precursor.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  16. The structure of the third intracellular loop of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M2 subtype.

    PubMed

    Ichiyama, Susumu; Oka, Yoshiaki; Haga, Kazuko; Kojima, Shuichi; Tateishi, Yukihiro; Shirakawa, Masahiro; Haga, Tatsuya

    2006-01-09

    We have examined whether the long third intracellular loop (i3) of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M2 subtype has a rigid structure. Circular dichroism (CD) and nuclear magnetic resonance spectra of M2i3 expressed in and purified from Escherichia coli indicated that M2i3 consists mostly of random coil. In addition, the differential CD spectrum between the M2 and M2deltai3 receptors, the latter of which lacks most of i3 except N- and C-terminal ends, gave no indication of secondary structure. These results suggest that the central part of i3 of the M2 receptor has a flexible structure.

  17. Crystal Structures of the M1 and M4 Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Thal, David M.; Sun, Bingfa; Feng, Dan; Nawaratne, Vindhya; Leach, Katie; Felder, Christian C.; Bures, Mark G.; Evans, David A.; Weis, William I.; Bachhawat, Priti; Kobilka, Tong Sun; Sexton, Patrick M.; Kobilka, Brian K.; Christopoulos, Arthur

    2016-01-01

    Summary Muscarinic M1–M5 acetylcholine receptors are G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) that regulate many vital functions of the central and peripheral nervous systems. In particular, the M1 and M4 receptor subtypes have emerged as attractive drug targets for treatments of neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia, but the high conservation of the acetylcholine-binding pocket has spurred current research into targeting allosteric sites on these receptors. Here, we report the first crystal structures of the M1 and M4 muscarinic receptors bound to the inverse agonist, tiotropium. Comparison of these structures to each other, as well as the previously reported M2 and M3 receptor structures, reveals differences in the orthosteric and allosteric binding sites that contribute to a role in drug selectivity at this important receptor family. We also report identification of a cluster of residues that form a network linking the orthosteric and allosteric sites of the M4 receptor, which provides new insight into how allosteric modulation may be transmitted between the two spatially distinct domains. PMID:26958838

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  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. In vivo Therapy with Monoclonal Anti-I-A Antibody Suppresses Immune Responses to Acetylcholine Receptor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Waldor, Matthew K.; Sriram, Subramaniam; McDevitt, Hugh O.; Steinman, Lawrence

    1983-05-01

    A monoclonal antibody to I-A gene products of the immune response gene complex attenuates both humoral and cellular responses to acetylcholine receptor and appears to suppress clinical manifestations of experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis. This demonstrates that use of antibodies against immune response gene products that are associated with susceptibility to disease may be feasible for therapy in autoimmune conditions such as myasthenia gravis.

  2. 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

  3. Two types of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in Drosophila and other arthropods.

    PubMed

    Collin, Caitlin; Hauser, Frank; Gonzalez de Valdivia, Ernesto; de Valdivia, Ernesto Gonzalez; Li, Shizhong; Reisenberger, Julia; Carlsen, Eva M M; Khan, Zaid; Hansen, Niels O; Puhm, Florian; Søndergaard, Leif; Niemiec, Justyna; Heninger, Magdalena; Ren, Guilin R; Grimmelikhuijzen, Cornelis J P

    2013-09-01

    Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs) play a central role in the mammalian nervous system. These receptors are G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), which are activated by the agonists acetylcholine and muscarine, and blocked by a variety of antagonists. Mammals have five mAChRs (m1-m5). In this study, we cloned two structurally related GPCRs from the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, which, after expression in Chinese hamster ovary cells, proved to be muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. One mAChR (the A-type; encoded by gene CG4356) is activated by acetylcholine (EC50, 5 × 10(-8) M) and muscarine (EC50, 6 × 10(-8) M) and blocked by the classical mAChR antagonists atropine, scopolamine, and 3-quinuclidinyl-benzilate (QNB), while the other (the B-type; encoded by gene CG7918) is also activated by acetylcholine, but has a 1,000-fold lower sensitivity to muscarine, and is not blocked by the antagonists. A- and B-type mAChRs were also cloned and functionally characterized from the red flour beetle Tribolium castaneum. Recently, Haga et al. (Nature 2012, 482: 547-551) published the crystal structure of the human m2 mAChR, revealing 14 amino acid residues forming the binding pocket for QNB. These residues are identical between the human m2 and the D. melanogaster and T. castaneum A-type mAChRs, while many of them are different between the human m2 and the B-type receptors. Using bioinformatics, one orthologue of the A-type and one of the B-type mAChRs could also be found in all other arthropods with a sequenced genome. Protostomes, such as arthropods, and deuterostomes, such as mammals and other vertebrates, belong to two evolutionarily distinct lineages of animal evolution that split about 700 million years ago. We found that animals that originated before this split, such as cnidarians (Hydra), had two A-type mAChRs. From these data we propose a model for the evolution of mAChRs.

  4. 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.

  5. Incorporation of acetylcholine receptors and Cl- channels in Xenopus oocytes injected with Torpedo electroplaque membranes.

    PubMed Central

    Marsal, J; Tigyi, G; Miledi, R

    1995-01-01

    A method was developed to transplant assembled nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AcChoRs) and Cl- channels from the electric organ of Torpedo to the membrane of Xenopus oocytes. Membrane vesicles from Torpedo electroplaques were injected into the oocytes and, within a few hours, the oocyte membrane acquired AcChoRs and Cl- channels. The mechanism of expression of these receptors and channels is very different from that which follows the injection of mRNA, since the appearance of receptors after membrane injection does not require de novo protein synthesis or N-glycosylation. This, and other controls, indicate that the foreign receptor-bearing membranes fuse with the oocyte membrane and cause the appearance of functional receptors and channels. All this makes the Xenopus oocyte an even more powerful tool for studies of the structure and function of membrane proteins. PMID:7761478

  6. Actions of octocoral and tobacco cembranoids on nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Ferchmin, P A; Pagán, Oné R; Ulrich, Henning; Szeto, Ada C; Hann, Richard M; Eterović, Vesna A

    2009-12-15

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) are pentameric proteins that form agonist-gated cation channels through the plasma membrane. AChR agonists and antagonists are potential candidates for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. Cembranoids are naturally occurring diterpenoids that contain a 14-carbon ring. These diterpenoids interact with AChRs in complex ways: as irreversible inhibitors at the agonist sites, as noncompetitive inhibitors, or as positive modulators, but no cembranoid was ever shown to have agonistic activity on AChRs. The cembranoid eupalmerin acetate displays positive modulation of agonist-induced currents in the muscle-type AChR and in the related gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) type A receptor. Moreover, cembranoids display important biological effects, many of them mediated by nicotinic receptors. Cembranoids from tobacco are neuroprotective through a nicotinic anti-apoptotic mechanism preventing excitotoxic neuronal death which in part could result from anti-inflammatory properties of cembranoids. Moreover, tobacco cembranoids also have anti-inflammatory properties which could enhance their neuroprotective properties. Cembranoids from tobacco affect nicotine-related behavior: they increase the transient initial ataxia caused by first nicotine injection into naive rats and inhibit the expression of locomotor sensitization to repeated injections of nicotine. In addition, cembranoids are known to act as anti-tumor compounds. In conclusion, cembranoids provide a promising source of lead drugs for many clinical areas, including neuroprotection, smoking-cessation, and anti-cancer therapies.

  7. Nicotine-morphine interactions at α4β2, α7 and α3(⁎) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Talka, Reeta; Salminen, Outi; Whiteaker, Paul; Lukas, Ronald J; Tuominen, Raimo K

    2013-02-15

    Nicotine and opioids share several behavioral and rewarding properties. Although both opioids and nicotine have their own specific mechanism of action, there is empirical and experimental evidence of interactions between these drugs. We studied receptor-level interactions of nicotine and morphine at α4β2, α7 and α3(⁎) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. [(3)H]epibatidine displacement was used to determine if morphine binds competitively to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Functional interactions of morphine and nicotine were studied with calcium fluorometry and (86)Rb(+) efflux assays. Morphine displaced [(3)H]epibatidine from nicotinic agonist binding sites in all cell lines studied. The Ki values for morphine were 13.2μM in SH-EP1-hα4β2 cells, 0.16μM and 126μM in SH-SY5Y cells and 43.7μM in SH-EP1-hα7 cells. In SH-EP1-hα4β2 cells expressing α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, morphine acted as a partial agonist of (86)Rb(+) efflux comparable to cytisine (with EC50 values of 53.3μM for morphine and 5.38μM for cytisine). The effect of morphine was attenuated concentration-dependently by the nicotinic antagonist mecamylamine. In the SH-SY5Y cell line expressing several subtypes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors morphine had an inhibitory effect on nicotine induced (86)Rb(+) ion efflux mediated by α3(⁎) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. These results suggest that morphine acts as a partial agonist at α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and as a weak antagonist at α3(⁎) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

  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. 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

  10. Investigation of the presence and antinociceptive function of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the African naked mole-rat (Heterocephalus glaber).

    PubMed

    Jørgensen, Kristine B; Krogh-Jensen, Karen; Pickering, Darryl S; Kanui, Titus I; Abelson, Klas S P

    2016-01-01

    The present study investigated the cholinergic system in the African naked mole-rat (Heterocephalus glaber) with focus on the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes M1 and M4. The protein sequences for the subtypes m 1-5 of the naked mole-rat were compared to that of the house mouse (Mus musculus) using basic local alignment search tool (BLAST). The presence and function of M1 and M4 was investigated in vivo, using the formalin test with the muscarinic receptor agonists xanomeline and VU0152100. Spinal cord tissue from the naked mole-rat was used for receptor saturation binding studies with [(3)H]-N-methylscopolamine. The BLAST test revealed 95 % protein sequence homology showing the naked mole-rat to have the genetic potential to express all five muscarinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes. A significant reduction in pain behavior was demonstrated after administration of 8.4 mg/kg in the formalin test. Administration of 50 mg/kg VU0152100 resulted in a non-significant tendency towards antinociception. The antinociceptive effects were reversed by the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist atropine. Binding studies indicated presence of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors with a radioligand affinity comparable to that reported in mice. In conclusion, muscarinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes are present in the naked mole-rat and contribute to antinociception in the naked mole-rat.

  11. Correlation of phospholipid structure with functional effects on the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. A modulatory role for phosphatidic acid.

    PubMed Central

    Bhushan, A; McNamee, M G

    1993-01-01

    Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy is used to characterize specific interactions between negatively charged lipids, such as phosphatidic acid, and the purified nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo californica. The specific interaction of phosphatidic acid with acetylcholine receptor is demonstrated by the receptor-induced perturbation of the lipid ionization state, which is monitored using Fourier transform infrared bands arising from the phosphate head group. The acetylcholine receptor shifts the pKa of phosphatidic acid molecules adjacent to the receptor to a lower value by almost 2 pH units from 8.5 to 6.6. Decreased pH also leads to changes in ion channel function and to changes in the secondary structure of the acetylcholine receptor in membranes containing ionizable phospholipids. Phospholipase D restores functional activity of acetylcholine receptor reconstituted in an unfavorable environment containing phosphatidylcholine by generating phosphatidic acid. Lipids such as phosphatidic acid may serve as allosteric effectors for membrane protein function and the lipid-protein interface could be a site for activity-dependent changes that lead to modulation of synaptic efficacy. PMID:8471723

  12. Characterization of a putative acetylcholine receptor in chick ciliary ganglion neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Stollberg, J.

    1985-01-01

    Monoclonal antibodies to the main immunogenic region on the alpha subunit of acetylcholine receptors in muscle and electric organ recognize membrane components in chick brain and ciliary ganglia that are candidates for the neuronal receptor. The component in chick brain has been purified by immunoaffinity chromatography. It specifically binds nicotine but not alpha-bungarotoxin, and can be affinity labeled with (/sup 3/H)bromoacetylcholine. The cross-reacting component in ciliary ganglion neurons is concentrated in synaptic membrane, and can be modulated by exposure of the cells to cholinergic ligands in culture. The cross-reacting component in ciliary ganglion neurons is an integral membrane component that binds concanavalin A, and it is distinct from the alpha-bungarotoxin binding component. The acetylcholine receptor function in these neurons can be locked by affinity alkylation with bromoacetylcholine, indicating similarity in this respect to receptors from muscle and electric organ. Antisera raised against the partially purified component from chick brain also block receptor function on ciliary ganglion neurons. The subcellular distribution of the ganglion component in culture is assessed, and it is shown that approximately 2/3 of the cross-reacting components are intracellular; the majority of these seem not to be destined for insertion into the plasma membrane.

  13. Changes in acetylcholine content, release and muscarinic receptors in rat hippocampus under cold stress

    SciTech Connect

    Fatranska, M.; Budai, D.; Gulya, K; Kvetnansky, R.

    1989-01-01

    The aim was to study the mechanism of the previously established decrease in acetylcholine (ACh) concentration in the rat hippocampus under cold stress. Male rats were exposed for 14 days to cold (5/degree/C) or kept (controls) at room temperature (24/degree/C). Acetylcholine content, release and muscarinic receptor binding were investigated in the hippocampus. Cold exposure resulted in a decrease of ACh concentration in the dorsal hippocampus. Moreover, the potassium-evoked release of ACh from hippocampal slices was increased and an increase of maximal binding capacity of (/sup 3/H)(-) quinuclidinyl benzilate in the dorsal hippocampus of cold exposed animals was also observed. Thus the decrease of hippocampal ACh concentration under cold exposure is probably due to its increased release. On balance then, our results demonstrate that cold stress in the rat induces significant activation of the hippocampal cholinergic system.

  14. Regulation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated synaptic responses by adenosine receptors in the rat hippocampus.

    PubMed Central

    Morton, R A; Davies, C H

    1997-01-01

    1. Intracellular current clamp recordings were made from CA1 pyramidal neurones in rat hippocampal slices. Experiments were performed in the presence of ionotropic glutamate receptor antagonists and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptor antagonists to block all fast excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission. A single stimulus, delivered extracellularly in the stratum oriens, caused a reduction in spike frequency adaptation in response to a depolarizing current step delivered 2 s after the stimulus. A 2- to 10-fold increase in stimulus intensity evoked a slow excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) which was associated with a small increase in input resistance. The peak amplitude of the EPSP occurred approximately 2.5 s after the stimulus and its magnitude (up to 30 mV) and duration (10-50 s) increased with increasing stimulus intensity. 2. The slow EPSP was unaffected by the metabotropic glutamate receptor antagonist (+)-alpha-methyl-4-carboxyphenylglycine ((+)-MCPG; 1000 microM) but was greatly enhanced by the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor physostigmine (1-5 microM). Both the slow EPSP and the stimulus-evoked reduction in spike frequency adaptation were inhibited by the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) antagonist atropine (1-5 microM). These results are consistent with these effects being mediated by mAChRs. 3. Both the mAChR-mediated EPSP (EPSPm) and the associated reduction in spike frequency adaptation were reversibly depressed (up to 97%) by either adenosine (100 microM) or its non-hydrolysable analogue 2-chloroadenosine (CADO; 0.1-5.0 microM). These effects were often accompanied by postsynaptic hyperpolarization (up to 8 mV) and a reduction in input resistance (up to 11%). The selective adenosine A1 receptor agonists 2-chloro-N6-cyclopentyladenosine (CCPA; 0.1-0.4 microM) and R(-)N6-(2-phenylisopropyl)-adenosine (R-PIA; 1 microM) both depressed the EPSPm. In contrast, the adenosine A2A receptor agonist 2-p-(2-carboxyethyl)-phenethylamino-5

  15. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the nucleus accumbens core and shell contribute to cocaine priming-induced reinstatement of drug seeking

    PubMed Central

    Yee, Judy; Famous, Katie R.; Hopkins, Thomas J.; McMullen, Michael C.; Pierce, R. Christopher; Schmidt, Heath D.

    2011-01-01

    Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the nucleus accumbens play an important role in mediating the reinforcing effects of cocaine. However, there is a paucity of data regarding the role of accumbal muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the reinstatement of cocaine-seeking behavior. The goal of these experiments was to assess the role of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the nucleus accumbens core and shell in cocaine and sucrose priming-induced reinstatement. Rats were initially trained to self-administer cocaine or sucrose on a fixed-ratio schedule of reinforcement. Lever-pressing behavior was then extinguished and followed by a subsequent reinstatement phase during which operant responding was induced by either a systemic injection of cocaine in cocaine-experienced rats or non-contingent delivery of sucrose pellets in subjects with a history of sucrose self-administration. Results indicated that systemic administration of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist scopolamine (5.0 mg/kg, i.p.) dose-dependently attenuated cocaine, but not sucrose, reinstatement. Furthermore, administration of scopolamine (36.0 μg) directly into the nucleus accumbens shell or core attenuated cocaine-priming induced reinstatement. In contrast, infusion of scopolamine (36.0 μg) directly into the accumbens core, but not shell, attenuated sucrose reinstatement, which suggests that muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in these two subregions of the nucleus accumbens have differential roles in sucrose seeking. Taken together, these results indicate that cocaine-priming induced reinstatement is mediated, in part, by increased signaling through muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the shell subregion of the nucleus accumbens. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the core of the accumbens, in contrast, appear to play a more general (i.e. not cocaine specific) role in motivated behaviors. PMID:21034738

  16. 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

  17. Common molecular mechanisms in field- and agrin-induced acetylcholine receptor clustering.

    PubMed

    Sabrina, F; Stollberg, J

    1997-04-01

    1. The aggregation of acetylcholine receptors at the developing neuromuscular junction is critical to the development and function of this synapse. In vitro studies have shown that receptor aggregation can be induced by the finding of agrin to the muscle cell surface and by the electric field-induced concentration of a (nonreceptor) molecule at the cathodal cell pole. 2. We report here on the interaction between agrin binding and electric fields with respect to the distribution of receptors and agrin binding sites. 3. (a) Pretreatment of cells with agrin completely blocks the development of field-induced receptor clusters. (b) Field-induced aggregation of receptors precedes the field-induced aggregation of agrin binding sites by approximately 30 min. (c) Electric fields prevent agrin-induced receptor clustering despite the presence of agrin binding sites and freely diffusing receptors. 4. These results indicate that another membrane component-but not the agrin binding site and not the receptor-is required for agrin-induced receptor clustering. They also suggest that electric fields and agrin cause receptor clustering via common molecular mechanisms.

  18. Subcellular localization of creatine kinase in Torpedo electrocytes: association with acetylcholine receptor-rich membranes

    PubMed Central

    1985-01-01

    Creatine kinase (CK, EC 2.7.3.2) has recently been identified as the intermediate isoelectric point species (pl 6.5-6.8) of the Mr 40,000- 43,000 nonreceptor, peripheral v-proteins in Torpedo marmorata acetylcholine receptor-rich membranes (Barrantes, F. J., G. Mieskes, and T. Wallimann, 1983, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 80: 5440-5444). In the present study, this finding is substantiated at the cellular and subcellular level of the T. marmorata electric organ by immunofluorescence and by protein A-gold labeling of either ultrathin cryosections of electrocytes or purified receptor-membrane vesicles that use subunit-specific anti-chicken creatine kinase antibodies. The muscle form of the kinase, on the one hand, is present throughout the entire T. marmorata electrocyte except in the nuclei. The brain form of the kinase, on the other hand, is predominantly located on the ventral, innervated face of the electrocyte, where it is closely associated with both surfaces of the postsynaptic membrane, and secondarily in the synaptic vesicles at the presynaptic terminal. Labeling of the noninnervated dorsal membrane is observed at the invaginated sac system. In the case of purified acetylcholine receptor-rich membranes, antibodies specific for chicken B-CK label only one face of the isolated vesicles. No immunoreaction is observed with anti-chicken M-CK antibodies. A discussion follows on the possible implications of these localizations of creatine kinase in connection with the function of the acetylcholine receptor at the postsynaptic membrane, the Na/K ATPase at the dorsal electrocyte membrane, and the ATP-dependent transmitter release at the nerve ending. PMID:3884630

  19. Pharmacological profile of zacopride and new quaternarized fluorobenzamide analogues on mammalian α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Bourdin, Céline M; Lebreton, Jacques; Mathé-Allainmat, Monique; Thany, Steeve H

    2015-08-15

    From quaternarization of quinuclidine enantiomers of 2-fluoro benzamide LMA10203 in dichloromethane, the corresponding N-chloromethyl derivatives LMA10227 and LMA10228 were obtained. Here, we compared the agonist action of known zacopride and its 2-fluoro benzamide analogues, LMA10203, LMA10227 and LMA10228 against mammalian homomeric α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expressed in Xenopus oocytes. We found that LMA10203 was a partial agonist of α7 receptor with a pEC50 value of 4.25 ± 0.06 μM whereas LMA10227 and LMA10228 were poorly active on α7 homomeric nicotinic receptor. LMA10227 and LMA10228 were identified as antagonists of acetylcholine-induced currents with IC50 values of 28.4 μM and 39.3 μM whereas LMA10203 and zacopride possessed IC50 values of 8.07 μM and 7.04 μM, respectively. Moreover, despite their IC50 values, LMA10227 was the most potent inhibitor of nicotine-induced current amplitudes (65.7 ± 2.1% inhibition). LMA10203 and LMA10228 had the same inhibitory effects (26.5 ± 7.5% and 33.2 ± 4.1%, respectively), whereas zacopride had no significant inhibitory effect (4.37 ± 4%) on nicotine-induced responses. Our results revealed different pharmacological properties between the four compounds on acetylcholine and nicotine currents. The mode of action of benzamide compounds may need to be reinterpreted with respect to the potential role of α7 receptor.

  20. 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.

  1. Reconstitution of Purified Acetylcholine Receptors with Functional Ion Channels in Planar Lipid Bilayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nelson, N.; Anholt, R.; Lindstrom, J.; Montal, M.

    1980-05-01

    Acetylcholine receptor, solubilized and purified from Torpedo californica electric organ under conditions that preserve the activity of its ion channel, was reconstituted into vesicles of soybean lipid by the cholate-dialysis technique. The reconstituted vesicles were then spread into monolayers at an air-water interface and planar bilayers were subsequently formed by apposition of two monolayers. Addition of carbamoylcholine caused an increase in membrane conductance that was transient and relaxed spontaneously to the base level (i.e., became desensitized). The response to carbamoylcholine was dose dependent and competitively inhibited by curare. Fluctuations of membrane conductance corresponding to the opening and closing of receptor channels were observed. Fluctuation analysis indicated a single-channel conductance of 16± 3 pS (in 0.1 M NaCl) with a mean channel open time estimated to be 35± 5 ms. Thus, purified acetylcholine receptor reconstituted into lipid bilayers exhibited the pharmacological specificity, activation, and desensitization properties expected of this receptor in native membranes.

  2. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated stimulation of retinal ganglion cell photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Sodhi, Puneet; Hartwick, Andrew T E

    2016-09-01

    Melanopsin-dependent phototransduction in intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) involves a Gq-coupled phospholipase C (PLC) signaling cascade. Acetylcholine, released in the mammalian retina by starburst amacrine cells, can also activate Gq-PLC pathways through certain muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs). Using multielectrode array recordings of rat retinas, we demonstrate that robust spiking responses can be evoked in neonatal and adult ipRGCs after bath application of the muscarinic agonist carbachol. The stimulatory action of carbachol on ipRGCs was a direct effect, as confirmed through calcium imaging experiments on isolated ipRGCs in purified cultures. Using flickering (6 Hz) yellow light stimuli at irradiances below the threshold for melanopsin activation, spiking responses could be elicited in ipRGCs that were suppressed by mAChR antagonism. Therefore, this work identified a novel melanopsin-independent pathway for stimulating sustained spiking in ganglion cell photoreceptors. This mAChR-mediated pathway could enhance ipRGC spiking responses in conditions known to evoke retinal acetylcholine release, such as those involving flickering or moving visual stimuli. Furthermore, this work identifies a pharmacological approach for light-independent ipRGC stimulation that could be targeted by mAChR agonists.

  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. Mapping of the alpha-bungarotoxin binding site within the alpha subunit of the acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Neumann, D; Barchan, D; Safran, A; Gershoni, J M; Fuchs, S

    1986-01-01

    Synthetic peptides and their respective antibodies have been used in order to map the alpha-bungarotoxin binding site within the alpha subunit of the acetylcholine receptor. By using antibodies to a synthetic peptide corresponding to residues 169-181 of the alpha subunit, we demonstrate that this sequence is included within the 18-kDa toxin binding fragment previously reported. Furthermore, the 18-kDa fragment was also found to bind a monoclonal antibody (5.5) directed against the cholinergic binding site. Sequential proteolysis of the acetylcholine receptor with trypsin, prior to Staphylococcus aureus V8 protease digestion, resulted in a 15-kDa toxin binding fragment that is included within the 18-kDa fragment but is shorter than it only at its carboxyl terminus. This 15-kDa fragment therefore initiates beyond Asp-152 and terminates in the region of Arg-313/Lys-314. In addition, experiments are reported that indicate that in the intact acetylcholine receptor, Cys-128 and/or Cys-142 are not crosslinked by disulfide bridges with any of the cysteines (at positions 192, 193, and 222) that reside in the 15-kDa toxin binding fragment. Finally, the synthetic dodecapeptide Lys-His-Trp-Val-Tyr-Tyr-Thr-Cys-Cys-Pro-Asp-Thr, which is present in the 15-kDa fragment (corresponding to residues 185-196 of the alpha subunit) was shown to bind alpha-bungarotoxin directly. This binding was completely inhibited by competition with d-tubocurarine. Images PMID:3458258

  5. Mapping of the alpha-bungarotoxin binding site within the alpha subunit of the acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Neumann, D; Barchan, D; Safran, A; Gershoni, J M; Fuchs, S

    1986-05-01

    Synthetic peptides and their respective antibodies have been used in order to map the alpha-bungarotoxin binding site within the alpha subunit of the acetylcholine receptor. By using antibodies to a synthetic peptide corresponding to residues 169-181 of the alpha subunit, we demonstrate that this sequence is included within the 18-kDa toxin binding fragment previously reported. Furthermore, the 18-kDa fragment was also found to bind a monoclonal antibody (5.5) directed against the cholinergic binding site. Sequential proteolysis of the acetylcholine receptor with trypsin, prior to Staphylococcus aureus V8 protease digestion, resulted in a 15-kDa toxin binding fragment that is included within the 18-kDa fragment but is shorter than it only at its carboxyl terminus. This 15-kDa fragment therefore initiates beyond Asp-152 and terminates in the region of Arg-313/Lys-314. In addition, experiments are reported that indicate that in the intact acetylcholine receptor, Cys-128 and/or Cys-142 are not crosslinked by disulfide bridges with any of the cysteines (at positions 192, 193, and 222) that reside in the 15-kDa toxin binding fragment. Finally, the synthetic dodecapeptide Lys-His-Trp-Val-Tyr-Tyr-Thr-Cys-Cys-Pro-Asp-Thr, which is present in the 15-kDa fragment (corresponding to residues 185-196 of the alpha subunit) was shown to bind alpha-bungarotoxin directly. This binding was completely inhibited by competition with d-tubocurarine.

  6. The Effects of Hyperbaric Pressure on in vitro Neural Receptors.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1984-06-01

    induced changes in the molecular organization of a lipid-peptide complex. Polymyxin binding to phosphatidic acid membranes. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 602...nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from rat muscle and eel electroplax were chemically and pharmacologically characterized and then subjected to...nicotinic AChR from rat gastrocnemius muscle , isolated either as a protein or proteoglycolipid, is altered in its binding toward cholinergic agents by

  7. 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.

  8. Regulation of phosphorylation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in mouse BC3H1 myocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, M.M.; Merlie, J.P.; Lawrence, J.C. Jr.

    1987-09-01

    By using /sup 32/P-labeling methods and performing immunoprecipitations with specific antibodies, the authors have found that three subunits of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and phosphorylated in mouse skeletal muscle cells. In nonstimulated cells, the molar ratios of phosphate estimated in ..cap alpha.., ..beta.., and delta subunits were 0.02, 0.05, and 0.5, respectively. All three subunits contained predominantly phosphoserine with some phosphothreonine; the ..beta.., subunit also contained phosphotyrosine. Incubating cells with agents that stimulate cAMP-dependent pathways (isoproterenol, forskolin, 8-Br-cAMP) increased the phosphorylation of the delta subunit by 50%, but phosphate labeling of the ..beta.. subunit was depressed by a third. In contrast, when cells were incubated with the divalent cation ionophores A-23187 or ionomycin, phosphorylation of both the delta and ..beta.. subunits increased. The results indicate that acetylcholine receptors are phosphorylated to significant levels in skeletal muscle cells and that cAMP-dependent and Ca/sup 2 +/-dependent pathways exist for controlling the phosphorylation state of the receptor subunits.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists for cognitive enhancement in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Freedman, Robert

    2014-01-01

    α7-Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors have emerged as a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of neurocognitive dysfunctions in schizophrenia that are often resistant to existing antipsychotic drugs. Molecular evidence for involvement in schizophrenia of CHRNA7, the gene for the receptor subunit, in the neurobiology of deficits in attention is a critical rationale for the clinical study of α7-nicotinic receptor agonists to improve neurocognition. Initial clinical trials show enhancement of inhibitory neuron function related to sensory gating and increased attention and working memory, as well as improvement in negative symptoms such as anhedonia and alogia. Further development of this therapeutic strategy requires assessment of interactions with patients' heavy cigarette smoking and the relationship of this mechanism to the therapeutic effects of clozapine and olanzapine, both highly effective therapeutics with significant side effects.

  12. Desensitization of human muscarinic acetylcholine receptor m2 subtypes is caused by their sequestration/internalization.

    PubMed

    Tsuga, H; Kameyama, K; Haga, T

    1998-10-01

    Desensitization of human muscarinic acetylcholine receptor m2 subtypes (hm2 receptors) stably expressed in chinese hamster ovary cells was measured as decreases in the carbamylcholine-stimulated [35S]GTPgammaS binding activity in membrane preparations after pre-treatment of cells with carbamylcholine. The extent of carbamylcholine-stimulated [35S]GTPgammaS binding activity was found to decrease to 64% following pretreatment of cells with 10 microM carbamylcholine for 30 min, and under the same conditions 51-59% of hm2 receptors were sequestered/internalized as assessed by decreases in the [3H]N-methylscopolamine binding activity on the cell surface. A similar reduction in the carbamylcholine-stimulated [35S]GTPgammaS binding activity was observed by pretreatment of cells with 5 nM propylbenzylylcholine mustard, which irreversibly bound to and inactivated 58% of the hm2 receptors. When the cells were pretreated with 10 microM carbamylcholine in the presence of 0.32 M sucrose, which is known to inhibit clathrin-mediated endocytosis, no sequestration/internalization of hm2 receptors was observed, and the extent of carbamylcholine-stimulated [35S]GTPgammaS binding activity did not change. These results indicate that desensitization of hm2 receptors may be caused by reduction of receptor number on the cell surface through sequestration/internalization rather than by loss of the function of receptors.

  13. Some properties of human neuronal alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors fused to the green fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Palma, Eleonora; Mileo, Anna M; Martinez-Torres, Ataulfo; Eusebi, Fabrizio; Miledi, Ricardo

    2002-03-19

    The functional properties and cellular localization of the human neuronal alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine (AcCho) receptor (alpha7 AcChoR) and its L248T mutated (mut) form were investigated by expressing them alone or as gene fusions with the enhanced version of the green fluorescent protein (GFP). Xenopus oocytes injected with wild-type (wt), mutalpha7, or the chimeric subunit cDNAs expressed receptors that gated membrane currents when exposed to AcCho. As already known, AcCho currents generated by wtalpha7 receptors decay much faster than those elicited by the mutalpha7 receptors. Unexpectedly, the fusion of GFP to the wt and mutated alpha7 receptors led to opposite results: the AcCho-current decay of the wt receptors became slower, whereas that of the mutated receptors was accelerated. Furthermore, repetitive applications of AcCho led to a considerable "run-down" of the AcCho currents generated by mutalpha7-GFP receptors, whereas those of the wtalpha7-GFP receptors remained stable or increased in amplitude. The AcCho-current run-down of mutalpha7-GFP oocytes was accompanied by a marked decrease of alpha-bungarotoxin binding activity. Fluorescence, caused by the chimeric receptors expressed, was seen over the whole oocyte surface but was more intense and abundant in the animal hemisphere, whereas it was much weaker in the vegetal hemisphere. We conclude that fusion of GFP to wtalpha7 and mutalpha7 receptors provides powerful tools to study the distribution and function of alpha7 receptors. We also conclude that fused genes do not necessarily recapitulate all of the properties of the original receptors. This fact must be borne close in mind whenever reporter genes are attached to proteins.

  14. Some properties of human neuronal α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors fused to the green fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Palma, Eleonora; Mileo, Anna M.; Martínez-Torres, Ataúlfo; Eusebi, Fabrizio; Miledi, Ricardo

    2002-01-01

    The functional properties and cellular localization of the human neuronal α7 nicotinic acetylcholine (AcCho) receptor (α7 AcChoR) and its L248T mutated (mut) form were investigated by expressing them alone or as gene fusions with the enhanced version of the green fluorescent protein (GFP). Xenopus oocytes injected with wild-type (wt), mutα7, or the chimeric subunit cDNAs expressed receptors that gated membrane currents when exposed to AcCho. As already known, AcCho currents generated by wtα7 receptors decay much faster than those elicited by the mutα7 receptors. Unexpectedly, the fusion of GFP to the wt and mutated α7 receptors led to opposite results: the AcCho-current decay of the wt receptors became slower, whereas that of the mutated receptors was accelerated. Furthermore, repetitive applications of AcCho led to a considerable “run-down” of the AcCho currents generated by mutα7-GFP receptors, whereas those of the wtα7-GFP receptors remained stable or increased in amplitude. The AcCho-current run-down of mutα7-GFP oocytes was accompanied by a marked decrease of α-bungarotoxin binding activity. Fluorescence, caused by the chimeric receptors expressed, was seen over the whole oocyte surface but was more intense and abundant in the animal hemisphere, whereas it was much weaker in the vegetal hemisphere. We conclude that fusion of GFP to wtα7 and mutα7 receptors provides powerful tools to study the distribution and function of α7 receptors. We also conclude that fused genes do not necessarily recapitulate all of the properties of the original receptors. This fact must be borne close in mind whenever reporter genes are attached to proteins. PMID:11891308

  15. 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.

  16. Role of Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor-2 in the Cerebellar Cortex in Cardiovascular Modulation in Anaesthetized Rats.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Changzheng; Sun, Tingzhe; Zhou, Peiling; Zhu, Qingfeng; Zhang, Liefeng

    2016-04-01

    Our previous investigations have demonstrated that microinjection of acetylcholine (ACh) or muscarinic ACh receptor activation in the cerebellar cortex induces a systemic blood pressure depressor response. This study aimed to determine the role of muscarinic ACh receptor-2 (M2 receptor) in the cerebellar cortex in cardiovascular function regulation in rats. A nonselective muscarinic receptor agonist (oxotremorine M, OXO; 30 mM), a selective M2 receptor agonist (arecaidine but-2-ynyl ester tosylate, ABET; 3, 10, and 30 mM), 30 mM OXO mixed with a selective M2 receptor antagonist (methoctramine hydrate, MCT; 0.3, 1, and 3 mM), and normal saline (0.9 % NaCl) were separately microinjected (0.5 µl/5 s) into the cerebellar cortex (lobule VI) of anaesthetized rats. We measured the mean arterial pressure (MAP), maximum change in MAP, and reactive time (RT; the duration required for the blood pressure to return to basal levels), heart rate (HR) and the maximum change in HR during the RT in response to drug activation. The results demonstrated that ABET dose-dependently decreased MAP and HR, increased the maximum change in MAP and the maximum change in HR, and prolonged the RT. Furthermore, MCT dose-dependently blocked the OXO-mediated cardiovascular depressor response. This study provides the first evidence that M2 receptors in the cerebellar cortex are involved in cardiovascular regulation, the activation of which evokes significant depressor and bradycardic responses.

  17. Topological dispositions of lysine. alpha. 380 and lysine. gamma. 486 in the acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo californica

    SciTech Connect

    Dwyer, B.P. )

    1991-04-23

    The locations have been determined, with respect to the plasma membrane, of lysine {alpha}380 and lysine {gamma}486 in the {alpha} subunit and the {gamma} subunit, respectively, of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo californica. Immunoadsorbents were constructed that recognize the carboxy terminus of the peptide GVKYIAE released by proteolytic digestion from positions 378-384 in the amino acid sequence of the {alpha} subunit of the acetylcholine receptor and the carboxy terminus of the peptide KYVP released by proteolytic digestion from positions 486-489 in the amino acid sequence of the {gamma} subunit. They were used to isolate these peptides from proteolytic digests of polypeptides from the acetylcholine receptor. Sealed vesicles containing the native acetylcholine receptor were labeled with pyridoxal phosphate and sodium ({sup 3}H)-borohydride. The effect of saponin on the incorporation of pyridoxamine phosphate into lysine {alpha}380 and lysine {gamma}486 from the acetylcholine receptor in these vesicles was assessed with the immunoadsorbents. The conclusions that follow from these results are that lysine {alpha}380 is on the inside surface of a vesicle and lysine {gamma}486 is on the outside surface. Because a majority (85%) of the total binding sites for {alpha}-bungarotoxin bind the toxin in the absence of saponin, the majority of the vesicles are right side out with the inside of the vesicle corresponding to the cytoplasmic surface and the outside of the vesicle corresponding to the extracytoplasmic, synaptic surface. Because lysine {alpha}380 and lysine {gamma}486 lie on opposite sides of the membrane, a membrane-spanning segment must be located between the two positions occupied by these two amino acids in the common sequence of a polypeptide of the acetylcholine receptor.

  18. Analysis of ligand binding to the synthetic dodecapeptide 185-196 of the acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit.

    PubMed Central

    Neumann, D; Barchan, D; Fridkin, M; Fuchs, S

    1986-01-01

    A synthetic dodecapeptide corresponding to residues 185-196 of the Torpedo acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit, which contains the adjacent cysteine residues at positions 192 and 193, was recently shown by us to contain the essential elements for alpha-bungarotoxin binding. In the present study, we have used Sepharose-linked peptides for quantitative analysis of the cholinergic binding properties of this and other synthetic peptides. Sepharose-linked peptides corresponding to residues 1-20, 126-143, 143-158, 169-181, 185-196, 193-210, and 394-409 of the alpha subunit of Torpedo acetylcholine receptor, as well as a peptide corresponding to residues 185-196 of the alpha subunit of human acetylcholine receptor, were tested for their toxin-binding capacity. Of these immobilized peptides, only peptide 185-196 of the Torpedo acetylcholine receptor bound toxin significantly, thus verifying that this synthetic peptide contains essential components of the receptor toxin-binding site. Analysis of toxin binding to the peptide yielded a dissociation constant of 3.5 X 10(-5) M. This binding was inhibited by various cholinergic ligands. The inhibition potency obtained was alpha-bungarotoxin greater than Naja naja siamensis toxin greater than d-tubocurarine greater than decamethonium greater than acetylcholine greater than carbamoylcholine. This pharmacological profile resembles that of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and therefore suggests that the synthetic dodecapeptide also includes the neurotransmitter binding site. Reduction and carboxymethylation of the cysteine residues on peptide 185-196 inhibit its capacity to bind toxin, demonstrating that an intact disulfide is required for toxin binding. A decrease in toxin binding was also obtained following chemical modification of the tryptophan residue at position 187, thus implying its possible involvement in toxin binding. The failure to detect binding of toxin to the corresponding human sequence 185-196, in which the

  19. Analysis of ligand binding to the synthetic dodecapeptide 185-196 of the acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit.

    PubMed

    Neumann, D; Barchan, D; Fridkin, M; Fuchs, S

    1986-12-01

    A synthetic dodecapeptide corresponding to residues 185-196 of the Torpedo acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit, which contains the adjacent cysteine residues at positions 192 and 193, was recently shown by us to contain the essential elements for alpha-bungarotoxin binding. In the present study, we have used Sepharose-linked peptides for quantitative analysis of the cholinergic binding properties of this and other synthetic peptides. Sepharose-linked peptides corresponding to residues 1-20, 126-143, 143-158, 169-181, 185-196, 193-210, and 394-409 of the alpha subunit of Torpedo acetylcholine receptor, as well as a peptide corresponding to residues 185-196 of the alpha subunit of human acetylcholine receptor, were tested for their toxin-binding capacity. Of these immobilized peptides, only peptide 185-196 of the Torpedo acetylcholine receptor bound toxin significantly, thus verifying that this synthetic peptide contains essential components of the receptor toxin-binding site. Analysis of toxin binding to the peptide yielded a dissociation constant of 3.5 X 10(-5) M. This binding was inhibited by various cholinergic ligands. The inhibition potency obtained was alpha-bungarotoxin greater than Naja naja siamensis toxin greater than d-tubocurarine greater than decamethonium greater than acetylcholine greater than carbamoylcholine. This pharmacological profile resembles that of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and therefore suggests that the synthetic dodecapeptide also includes the neurotransmitter binding site. Reduction and carboxymethylation of the cysteine residues on peptide 185-196 inhibit its capacity to bind toxin, demonstrating that an intact disulfide is required for toxin binding. A decrease in toxin binding was also obtained following chemical modification of the tryptophan residue at position 187, thus implying its possible involvement in toxin binding. The failure to detect binding of toxin to the corresponding human sequence 185-196, in which the

  20. Subtype-selective nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists enhance the responsiveness to citalopram and reboxetine in the mouse forced swim test.

    PubMed

    Andreasen, Jesper T; Nielsen, Elsebet Ø; Christensen, Jeppe K; Olsen, Gunnar M; Peters, Dan; Mirza, Naheed R; Redrobe, John P

    2011-10-01

    Nicotine increases serotonergic and noradrenergic neuronal activity and facilitates serotonin and noradrenaline release. Accordingly, nicotine enhances antidepressant-like actions of reuptake inhibitors selective for serotonin or noradrenaline in the mouse forced swim test and the mouse tail suspension test. Both high-affinity α4β2 and low-affinity α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes are implicated in nicotine-mediated release of serotonin and noradrenaline. The present study therefore investigated whether selective agonism of α4β2 or α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors would affect the mouse forced swim test activity of two antidepressants with distinct mechanisms of action, namely the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor citalopram and the noradrenaline reuptake inhibitor reboxetine. Subthreshold and threshold doses of citalopram (3 and 10 mg/kg) or reboxetine (10 and 20 mg/kg) were tested alone and in combination with the novel α4β2-selective partial nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist, NS3956 (0.3 and 1.0 mg/kg) or the α7-selective nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist, PNU-282987 (10 and 30 mg/kg). Alone, NS3956 and PNU-282987 were devoid of activity in the mouse forced swim test, but both 1.0 mg/kg NS3956 and 30 mg/kg PNU-282987 enhanced the effect of citalopram and also reboxetine. The data suggest that the activity of citalopram and reboxetine in the mouse forced swim test can be enhanced by agonists at either α4β2 or α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, suggesting that both nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes may be involved in the nicotine-enhanced action of antidepressants.

  1. CNS acetylcholine receptor activity in European medicinal plants traditionally used to improve failing memory.

    PubMed

    Wake, G; Court, J; Pickering, A; Lewis, R; Wilkins, R; Perry, E

    2000-02-01

    Certain Lamiaceous and Asteraceous plants have long histories of use as restoratives of lost or declining cognitive functions in western European systems of traditional medicine. Investigations were carried out to evaluate human CNS cholinergic receptor binding activity in extracts of those European medicinal plants reputed to enhance or restore mental functions including memory. Ethanolic extracts were prepared from accessions of these plants and a number of other species related by genus. Amongst the plant extracts screened for contents able to displace [3H]-(N)-nicotine and [3H]-(N)-scopolamine from nicotinic receptors and muscarinic receptors, respectively in homogenates of human cerebral cortical cell membranes, the most potent extracts, prepared from one accession of Melissa officinalis, three Salvia species and Artemisia absinthium had IC50 concentrations of < 1 mg/ml. The displacement curves of some extracts were comparable with that of carbamylcholine chloride, a potent acetylcholine analogue. Choline, a weak nicotinic ligand (IC50 = 3 x 10(-4) M) was found in extracts of all plants studied at concentrations of 10(-6)-10(-5) M. These concentrations could not account for not more than 5% of the displacement activity observed. Some extracts displayed differential displacement at nicotinic and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, with M. officinalis 0033 having the highest [3H]-(N)-nicotine displacement value and Salvia elegans with the highest [3H]-(N)-scopolamine displacement value. There was also considerable variation in cholinoreceptor interactions between different accessions of a single plant species. Although most plant extracts screened showed some nicotinic and muscarinic activity, only some showed dose-dependent receptor activity typical of materials with genuine cholinergic activity.

  2. Activation of Muscarinic M1 Acetylcholine Receptors Induces Long-Term Potentiation in the Hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    Dennis, Siobhan H.; Pasqui, Francesca; Colvin, Ellen M.; Sanger, Helen; Mogg, Adrian J.; Felder, Christian C.; Broad, Lisa M.; Fitzjohn, Steve M.; Isaac, John T.R.; Mellor, Jack R.

    2016-01-01

    Muscarinic M1 acetylcholine receptors (M1Rs) are highly expressed in the hippocampus, and their inhibition or ablation disrupts the encoding of spatial memory. It has been hypothesized that the principal mechanism by which M1Rs influence spatial memory is by the regulation of hippocampal synaptic plasticity. Here, we use a combination of recently developed, well characterized, selective M1R agonists and M1R knock-out mice to define the roles of M1Rs in the regulation of hippocampal neuronal and synaptic function. We confirm that M1R activation increases input resistance and depolarizes hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons and show that this profoundly increases excitatory postsynaptic potential-spike coupling. Consistent with a critical role for M1Rs in synaptic plasticity, we now show that M1R activation produces a robust potentiation of glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto CA1 pyramidal neurons that has all the hallmarks of long-term potentiation (LTP): The potentiation requires NMDA receptor activity and bi-directionally occludes with synaptically induced LTP. Thus, we describe synergistic mechanisms by which acetylcholine acting through M1Rs excites CA1 pyramidal neurons and induces LTP, to profoundly increase activation of CA1 pyramidal neurons. These features are predicted to make a major contribution to the pro-cognitive effects of cholinergic transmission in rodents and humans. PMID:26472558

  3. Activation of Muscarinic M1 Acetylcholine Receptors Induces Long-Term Potentiation in the Hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Dennis, Siobhan H; Pasqui, Francesca; Colvin, Ellen M; Sanger, Helen; Mogg, Adrian J; Felder, Christian C; Broad, Lisa M; Fitzjohn, Steve M; Isaac, John T R; Mellor, Jack R

    2016-01-01

    Muscarinic M1 acetylcholine receptors (M1Rs) are highly expressed in the hippocampus, and their inhibition or ablation disrupts the encoding of spatial memory. It has been hypothesized that the principal mechanism by which M1Rs influence spatial memory is by the regulation of hippocampal synaptic plasticity. Here, we use a combination of recently developed, well characterized, selective M1R agonists and M1R knock-out mice to define the roles of M1Rs in the regulation of hippocampal neuronal and synaptic function. We confirm that M1R activation increases input resistance and depolarizes hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons and show that this profoundly increases excitatory postsynaptic potential-spike coupling. Consistent with a critical role for M1Rs in synaptic plasticity, we now show that M1R activation produces a robust potentiation of glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto CA1 pyramidal neurons that has all the hallmarks of long-term potentiation (LTP): The potentiation requires NMDA receptor activity and bi-directionally occludes with synaptically induced LTP. Thus, we describe synergistic mechanisms by which acetylcholine acting through M1Rs excites CA1 pyramidal neurons and induces LTP, to profoundly increase activation of CA1 pyramidal neurons. These features are predicted to make a major contribution to the pro-cognitive effects of cholinergic transmission in rodents and humans.

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. Minimum number of lipids are required to support the functional properties of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, O.T.; Eubanks, J.H.; Earnest, J.P.; McNamee, M.G.

    1988-05-17

    The detergent sodium cholate was used to both solubilize and partially delipidate the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo californica. Using both native membranes and reconstituted membranes, it is shown that the detergent to lipid molar ratio is the most important parameter in determining the effect of the detergent on the functional properties of the receptor. Receptor-lipid complexes were quantitatively separated from detergent and excess lipids by centrifugation through detergent-free sucrose gradients. The lipid to protein molar ratio of the complexes could be precisely controlled by adjusting the cholate and lipid concentrations of the starting membranes. Analyses of both ion influx activity and ligand binding revealed that a minimum of 45 lipids per receptor was required for stabilization of the receptor in a fully functional state. Progressive irreversible inactivation occurred as the lipid to protein mole ratio was decreased below 45, and complete inactivation occurred below a ratio of 20. The results are consistent with a functional requirement for a single shell of lipids around the perimeter of the receptor.

  8. A model of the closed form of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor m2 channel pore.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sanguk; Chamberlain, Aaron K; Bowie, James U

    2004-08-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor is a neurotransmitter-gated ion channel in the postsynaptic membrane. It is composed of five homologous subunits, each of which contributes one transmembrane helix--the M2 helix--to create the channel pore. The M2 helix from the delta subunit is capable of forming a channel by itself. Although a model of the receptor was recently proposed based on a low-resolution, cryo-electron microscopy density map, we found that the model does not explain much of the other available experimental data. Here we propose a new model of the M2 channel derived solely from helix packing and symmetry constraints. This model agrees well with experimental results from solid-state NMR, chemical reactivity, and mutagenesis experiments. The model depicts the channel pore, the channel gate, and the residues responsible for cation specificity.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1990-01-01

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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Bispyridinium Compounds Inhibit Both Muscle and Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in Human Cell Lines

    PubMed Central

    Ring, Avi; Strom, Bjorn Oddvar; Turner, Simon R.; Timperley, Christopher M.; Bird, Michael; Green, A. Christopher; Chad, John E.; Worek, Franz; Tattersall, John E. H.

    2015-01-01

    Standard treatment of poisoning by organophosphorus anticholinesterases uses atropine to reduce the muscarinic effects of acetylcholine accumulation and oximes to reactivate acetylcholinesterase (the effectiveness of which depends on the specific anticholinesterase), but does not directly address the nicotinic effects of poisoning. Bispyridinium molecules which act as noncompetitive antagonists at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors have been identified as promising compounds and one has been shown to improve survival following organophosphorus poisoning in guinea-pigs. Here, we have investigated the structural requirements for antagonism and compared inhibitory potency of these compounds at muscle and neuronal nicotinic receptors and acetylcholinesterase. A series of compounds was synthesised, in which the length of the polymethylene linker between the two pyridinium moieties was increased sequentially from one to ten carbon atoms. Their effects on nicotinic receptor-mediated calcium responses were tested in muscle-derived (CN21) and neuronal (SH-SY5Y) cells. Their ability to inhibit acetylcholinesterase activity was tested using human erythrocyte ghosts. In both cell lines, the nicotinic response was inhibited in a dose-dependent manner and the inhibitory potency of the compounds increased with greater linker length between the two pyridinium moieties, as did their inhibitory potency for human acetylcholinesterase activity in vitro. These results demonstrate that bispyridinium compounds inhibit both neuronal and muscle nicotinic receptors and that their potency depends on the length of the hydrocarbon chain linking the two pyridinium moieties. Knowledge of structure-activity relationships will aid the optimisation of molecular structures for therapeutic use against the nicotinic effects of organophosphorus poisoning. PMID:26274808

  13. The α6 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit influences ethanol-induced sedation.

    PubMed

    Kamens, Helen M; Hoft, Nicole R; Cox, Ryan J; Miyamoto, Jill H; Ehringer, Marissa A

    2012-08-01

    Alcohol and nicotine are often co-used and data from human and animals studies have demonstrated that common genes underlie responses to these two drugs. Recently, the genes that code for the subunits of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors have been implicated as a common genetic mediator for alcohol and nicotine responses. The mammalian genes that code for the α6 and β3 subunits of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (Chrna6 and Chrnb3, respectively) are located adjacent to each other on human and mouse chromosome 8. These subunits have gained attention as potential regulators of drug behaviors because of their expression in the striatum where they have been shown to modulate dopamine release. Human genetic studies have shown that variation in these genes is associated with alcohol phenotypes. In the current experiments, mice lacking the Chrna6 or Chrnb3 gene were tested for three ethanol behaviors: choice ethanol consumption, ataxia, and sedation. Wildtype (WT), heterozygous (HET), and knockout (KO) mice of each strain went through a standard 2-bottle choice drinking paradigm, the balance beam, and the Loss of Righting Reflex (LORR) paradigm. No genotypic effects on any of the 3 behavioral tasks were observed in Chrnb3 animals. While the Chrna6 gene did not significantly influence ethanol consumption (g/kg) or ataxia, mice lacking the α6 subunit took significantly longer to recover their righting reflex than WT animals. These data provide evidence that receptors containing this subunit modulate the sedative effects of ethanol. Further work examining other models of ethanol consumption and behavioral responses to ethanol is needed to fully characterize the role of these receptor subunits in modulating ethanol responses.

  14. Pathological mechanisms in experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis. II. Passive transfer of experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis in rats with anti-acetylcholine recepotr antibodies

    PubMed Central

    1976-01-01

    Passive transfer of experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG) was achieved using the gamma globulin fraction and purified IgG from sera of rats immunized with Electrophus electricus (eel) acetylcholine receptor (AChR). This demonstrates the critical role of anti-AChR antibodies in impairing neuromuscular transmission in EAMG. Passive transfer of anti-AChR antibodies from rats with chronic EAMG induced signs of the acute phase of EAMG in normal recipient rats, including invasion of the motor end-plate region by mononuclear inflammatory cells. Clinical, eletrophysiological, histological, and biochemical signs of acute EAMG were observed by 24 h after antibody transfer. Recipient rats developed profound weakness and fatigability, and the posture characteristic of EAMG. Striking weight loss was attributable to dehydration. Recipient rats showed large decreases in amplitude of muscle responses to motor nerve stimulation, and repetitive nerve stimulation induced characteristic decrementing responses. End-plate potentials were not detectable in many muscle fibers, and the amplitudes of miniature end-plate potentials were reduced in the others. Passively transferred EAMG more severely affected the forearm muscles than diaphragm muscles, though neuromuscular transmission was impaired and curare sensitivity was increased in both muscles. Some AChR extracted from the muscles of rats with passively transferred EAMG was found to be complexed with antibody, and the total yield of AChR per rat was decreased. The quantitative decrease in AChR approximately paralleled in time the course of clinical and electrophysiological signs. The amount of AChR increased to normal levels and beyond at the time neuromuscular transmission was improving. The excess of AChR extractable from muscle as the serum antibody level decreased probably represented extrajunctional receptors formed in response to functional denervation caused by phagocytosis of the postsynaptic membrane by macrophages

  15. Activation of muscarinic and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the nucleus accumbens core is necessary for the acquisition of drug reinforcement.

    PubMed

    Crespo, Jose A; Sturm, Katja; Saria, Alois; Zernig, Gerald

    2006-05-31

    Neurotransmitter release in the nucleus accumbens core (NACore) during the acquisition of remifentanil or cocaine reinforcement was determined in an operant runway procedure by simultaneous tandem mass spectrometric analysis of dopamine, acetylcholine, and remifentanil or cocaine itself. Run times for remifentanil or cocaine continually decreased over the five consecutive runs of the experiment. Intra-NACore dopamine, acetylcholine, and drug peaked with each intravenous remifentanil or cocaine self-administration and decreased to pre-run baseline with half-lives of approximately 10 min. As expected, remifentanil or cocaine peaks did not vary between the five runs. Surprisingly, however, drug-contingent dopamine peaks also did not change over the five runs, whereas acetylcholine peaks did. Thus, the acquisition of drug reinforcement was paralleled by a continuous increase in acetylcholine overflow in the NACore, whereas the overflow of dopamine, the expected prime neurotransmitter candidate for conditioning in drug reinforcement, did not increase. Local intra-accumbens administration by reverse microdialysis of either atropine or mecamylamine completely and reversibly blocked the acquisition of remifentanil reinforcement. Our findings suggest that activation of muscarinic and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the NACore by acetylcholine volume transmission is necessary during the acquisition phase of drug reinforcement conditioning.

  16. The endogenous cannabinoid anandamide inhibits alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated responses in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed

    Oz, Murat; Ravindran, Arippa; Diaz-Ruiz, Oscar; Zhang, Li; Morales, Marisela

    2003-09-01

    The effect of the endogenous cannabinoid ligand anandamide on the function of the cloned alpha7 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptor expressed in Xenopus oocytes was investigated by using the two-electrode voltage-clamp technique. Anandamide reversibly inhibited nicotine (10 microM) induced-currents in a concentration-dependent manner (10 nM to 30 microM), with an IC50 value of 229.7 +/- 20.4 nM. The effect of anandamide was neither dependent on the membrane potential nor meditated by endogenous Ca2+ dependent Cl- channels since it was unaffected by intracellularly injected BAPTA and perfusion with Ca2+-free bathing solution containing 2 mM Ba2+. Anandamide decreased the maximal nicotine-induced responses without significantly affecting its potency, indicating that it acts as a noncompetitive antagonist on nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) alpha7 receptors. This effect was not mediated by CB1 or CB2 receptors, as neither the selective CB1 receptor antagonist N-(piperidin-1-yl)-5-(4-chlorophenyl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-4-methyl-1H-pyrazole-3-carboximide hydrochloride (SR 141716A) nor CB2 receptor antagonist N-((1S)-endo-1,3,3-trimethyl-bicyclo-heptan-2-yl]-5-(4-chloro-3-methylphenyl)-1-(4-methylbenzyl)-pyrazole-3-carboxamide (SR 144528) reduced the inhibition by anandamide. In addition, inhibition of nicotinic responses by anandamide was not sensitive to either pertussis toxin treatment or to the membrane permeable cAMP analog 8-Br-cAMP (0.2 mM). Inhibitors of enzymes involved in anandamide metabolism including phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride, superoxide dismutase, and indomethacin, or the anandamide transport inhibitor AM404 did not prevent anandamide inhibition of nicotinic responses, suggesting that anandamide itself acted on nicotinic receptors. In conclusion, these results demonstrate that the endogenous cannabinoid anandamide inhibits the function of nACh alpha7 receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes in a cannabinoid receptor-independent and

  17. 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.

  18. Expression and functional properties of α7 acetylcholine nicotinic receptors are modified in the presence of other receptor subunits.

    PubMed

    Criado, Manuel; Valor, Luis M; Mulet, José; Gerber, Susana; Sala, Salvador; Sala, Francisco

    2012-11-01

    Although α7 nicotinic receptors are predominantly homopentamers, previous reports have indicated that α7 and β2 subunits are able to form heteromers. We have studied whether other nicotinic receptor subunits can also assemble with α7 subunits and the effect of this potential association. Coexpression of α7 with α2, α3, or β4 subunits reduced to about half, surface α-bungarotoxin binding sites and acetylcholine-gated currents. This is probably because of inhibition of membrane trafficking, as the total amount of α7 subunits was similar in all cases and a significant proportion of mature α7 receptors was present inside the cell. Only β4 subunits appeared to directly associate with α7 receptors at the membrane and these heteromeric receptors showed some kinetic and pharmacological differences when compared with homomeric α7 receptors. Finally, we emulated the situation of bovine chromaffin cells in Xenopus laevis oocytes by using the same proportion of α3, β4, α5, and α7 mRNAs, finding that α-bungarotoxin binding was similarly reduced in spite of increased currents, apparently mediated by α3β4(α5) receptors.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  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. alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and modulation of gabaergic synaptic transmission in the hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Alkondon, M; Braga, M F; Pereira, E F; Maelicke, A; Albuquerque, E X

    2000-03-30

    The present report provides new findings regarding modulation of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) transmission by alpha7 nicotinic receptor activity in CA1 interneurons of rat hippocampal slices. Recordings were obtained from tight-seal cell-attached patches of the CA1 interneurons, and agonists were delivered to the neurons via a modified U-tube. Application for 6 s of the alpha7 nicotinic receptor-selective agonist choline (> or =1 mM) to all CA1 interneurons tested triggered action potentials that were detected as fast current transients. The activity triggered by choline terminated well before the end of the agonist pulse, was blocked by the alpha7 nicotinic receptor antagonist methyllycaconitine (50 nM) and was concentration dependent; the higher the concentration of choline the higher the frequency of events and the shorter the delay for detection of the first event. In 40% of the neurons tested, choline-triggered action potentials decreased in amplitude progressively until no more events could be detected despite the presence of the agonist. Primarily, this finding could be explained by Na(+)-channel inactivation associated with membrane depolarization induced by alpha7 nicotinic receptor activation. In 60% of the neurons, the amplitude of choline-induced action potentials was sustained at the intial level, but again the activity did not last as long as the agonist pulse, in this case apparently because of agonist-induced receptor desensitization. These results altogether demonstrate that agonists interacting with alpha7 nicotinic receptors, including the natural transmitter acetylcholine and its metabolite choline, influence GABAergic transmission, not only by activating these receptors, but also by controlling the rate of Na(+)-channel inactivation and/or by inducing receptor desensitization.

  3. Desensitization and internalization of the m2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor are directed by independent mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Pals-Rylaarsdam, R; Xu, Y; Witt-Enderby, P; Benovic, J L; Hosey, M M

    1995-12-01

    The phenomenon of acute desensitization of G-protein-coupled receptors has been associated with several events, including receptor phosphorylation, loss of high affinity agonist binding, receptor:G-protein uncoupling, and receptor internalization. However, the biochemical events underlying these processes are not fully understood, and their contributions to the loss of signaling remain correlative. In addition, the nature of the kinases and the receptor domains which are involved in modulation of activity have only begun to be investigated. In order to directly measure the role of G-protein-coupled receptor kinases (GRKs) in the desensitization of the m2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (m2 mAChR), a dominant-negative allele of GRK2 was used to inhibit receptor phosphorylation by endogenous GRK activity in a human embryonic kidney cell line. The dominant-negative GRK2K220R reduced agonist-dependent phosphorylation of the m2 mAChR by approximately 50% and prevented acute desensitization of the receptor as measured by the ability of the m2 mAChR to attenuate adenylyl cyclase activity. In contrast, the agonist-induced internalization of the m2 mAChR was unaffected by the GRK2K220R construct. Further evidence linking receptor phosphorylation to acute receptor desensitization was obtained when two deletions of the third intracellular loop were made which created m2 mAChRs that did not become phosphorylated in an agonist-dependent manner and did not desensitize. However, the mutant mAChRs retained the ability to internalize. These data provide the first direct evidence that GRK-mediated receptor phosphorylation is necessary for m2 mAChR desensitization; the likely sites of in vivo phosphorylation are in the central portion of the third intracellular loop (amino acids 282-323). These results also indicate that internalization of the m2 receptor is not a key event in desensitization and is mediated by mechanisms distinct from GRK phosphorylation of the receptor.

  4. Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor M3 Modulates Odorant Receptor Activity via Inhibition of β-Arrestin-2 Recruitment

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Yue; Li, Yun Rose; Tian, Huikai; Ma, Minghong; Matsunami, Hiroaki

    2015-01-01

    The olfactory system in rodents serves a critical function in social, reproductive, and survival behaviors. Processing of chemosensory signals in the brain is dynamically regulated in part by an animal's physiological state. We previously reported that type 3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (M3-Rs) physically interact with odorant receptors (ORs) to promote odor-induced responses in a heterologous expression system. However, it is not known how M3-Rs affect the ability of olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) to respond to odors. Here, we show that an M3-R antagonist attenuates odor-induced responses in OSNs from wild-type, but not M3-R-null mice. Using a novel molecular assay, we demonstrate that the activation of M3-Rs inhibits the recruitment of β-arrestin-2 to ORs, resulting in a potentiation of odor-induced response in OSNs. These results suggest a role for acetylcholine in modulating olfactory processing at the initial stages of signal transduction in the olfactory system. PMID:25800153

  5. Regulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor phosphorylation in rat myotubes by forskolin and cAMP

    SciTech Connect

    Miles, K.; Anthony, D.T.; Rubin, L.L.; Greengard, P.; Huganir, R.L.

    1987-09-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (Ac-ChoR) from rat myotubes prelabeled in culture with (/sup 32/P)orthophosphate was isolated by acetylcholine affinity chromatography followed by immunoaffinity chromatography. Under basal conditions, the nicotinic AcChoR was shown to be phosphorylated in situ on the ..beta.. and delta subunits. Regulation of AcChoR phosphorylation by cAMP-dependent protein kinase was explored by the addition of forskolin or cAMP analogues to prelabeled cell cultures. Forskolin, an activator of adenylate cyclase, stimulated the phosphorylation of the delta subunit 20-fold over basal phosphorylation and induced phosphorylation of the ..cap alpha.. subunit. The effect of forskolin was dose dependent with a half-maximal response at 8 ..mu..M in the presence of 35 ..mu..M Ro 20-1724, a phosphodiesterase inhibitor. Stimulation of delta subunit phosphorylation was almost maximal within 5 min, whereas stimulation of ..cap alpha.. subunit phosphorylation was not maximal until 45 min after forskolin treatment. Stimulation of AcChoR phosphorylation by 8-benzylthioadenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate was identical to that obtained by forskolin. Two-dimensional thermolytic phosphopeptide maps of the delta subunit revealed a single major phosphopeptide. These results correlate closely with the observed effects of forskolin on AcChoR desensitization in muscle and suggest that cAMP-dependent phosphorylation of the delta subunit increases the rate of AcChoR desensitization in rat myotubes.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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...

  9. 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...

  10. Immunodominant regions for T helper-cell sensitization on the human nicotinic receptor alpha subunit in myasthenia gravis.

    PubMed Central

    Protti, M P; Manfredi, A A; Straub, C; Howard, J F; Conti-Tronconi, B M

    1990-01-01

    In myasthenia gravis an autoimmune response against the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) occurs. The alpha subunit of the AChR contains both the epitope(s) that dominates the antibody response (main immunogenic region) and epitopes involved in T helper cell sensitization. In this study, overlapping synthetic peptides corresponding to the complete AChR alpha-subunit sequence were used to propagate polyclonal AChR-specific T helper cell lines from four myasthenic patients of different HLA types. Response of the T helper lines to the individual peptides was studied. Four immunodominant sequence segments were identified--i.e., residues 48-67, 101-120, 304-322, and 419-437. These regions did not include residues known to form the main immunogenic region or the cholinergic binding site, and they frequently contained sequence motifs that have been proposed to be related to T-epitope formation. Images PMID:2145582

  11. Antipsychotic clozapine inhibits the function of alpha7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Singhal, Sachin K; Zhang, Li; Morales, Marisela; Oz, Murat

    2007-02-01

    The effects of the antipsychotic clozapine on the function of the cloned alpha(7) subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptor expressed in Xenopus oocytes was investigated by using the two-electrode voltage-clamp technique. Clozapine reversibly inhibited nicotine (10 microM)-induced currents in a concentration-dependent manner (300 nM to 90 microM), with an IC(50) value of 3.2+/-0.4 microM. The effect of clozapine was not dependent on the membrane potential. Clozapine did not affect the activity of endogenous Ca(2+)-dependent Cl(-) channels since the inhibition by clozapine was unaltered by the intracellularly injected Ca(2+) chelator BAPTA and perfusion with Ca(2+)-free bathing solution containing 2mM Ba(2+). Clozapine decreased the maximal nicotine-induced responses without significantly affecting its potency, indicating that it acts as a noncompetitive antagonist on alpha(7)-nACh receptors. In hippocampal slices, the whole-cell recordings from CA1 pyramidal neurons indicated that the increases in the frequency and amplitudes of the GABA-mediated spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents induced by bath application of 2 mM choline, a specific agonist for alpha(7)-nACh receptors, were abolished after 10 min application of 5 microM clozapine. In conclusion, these results demonstrate that clozapine inhibits the function of alpha(7)-nACh receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes and in hippocampal neurons.

  12. 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.

  13. The molecular basis of oligomeric organization of the human M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Liste, María José Varela; Caltabiano, Gianluigi; Ward, Richard J; Alvarez-Curto, Elisa; Marsango, Sara; Milligan, Graeme

    2015-06-01

    G protein-coupled receptors, including the M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor, can form homo-oligomers. However, the basis of these interactions and the overall organizational structure of such oligomers are poorly understood. Combinations of site-directed mutagenesis and homogenous time-resolved fluorescence resonance energy transfer studies that assessed interactions between receptor protomers at the surface of transfected cells indicated important contributions of regions of transmembrane domains I, IV, V, VI, and VII as well as intracellular helix VIII to the overall organization. Molecular modeling studies based on both these results and an X-ray structure of the inactive state of the M3 receptor bound by the antagonist/inverse agonist tiotropium were then employed. The results could be accommodated fully by models in which a proportion of the cell surface M3 receptor population is a tetramer with rhombic, but not linear, orientation. This is consistent with previous studies based on spectrally resolved, multiphoton fluorescence resonance energy transfer. Modeling studies furthermore suggest an important role for molecules of cholesterol at the dimer + dimer interface of the tetramer, which is consistent with the presence of cholesterol at key locations in many G protein-coupled receptor crystal structures. Mutants that displayed disrupted quaternary organization were often poorly expressed and showed immature N-glycosylation. Sustained treatment of cells expressing such mutants with the muscarinic receptor inverse agonist atropine increased cellular levels and restored both cell surface delivery and quaternary organization to many of the mutants. These observations suggest that organization as a tetramer may occur before plasma membrane delivery and may be a key step in cellular quality control assessment.

  14. Distribution of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors and presynaptic nerve terminals in amphibian heart

    PubMed Central

    1980-01-01

    At many synapses, neurotransmitter receptor molecules in the postsynaptic membrane are selectively concentrated at a site directly opposite the presynaptic nerve terminal. In this paper, I examine acetylcholine (ACh) receptor distribution in cardiac muscle in relatin to the distribution of presynaptic axonal varicosities. The density of varicosities, stained with zinc iodide and osmium, ranges from 0.7/100 micrometer 2 in ventricle to 1.9/100 micrometer 2 in sinus venosus. It is estimated that < 3% of the muscle surface is apposed to presynaptic varicosities. ACh receptors, however, are randomly distributed on the muscle surface and not concentrated in patche. ACh receptor distribution was determined by iontophoretic application of ACh and mapping of ACh sensitivity and by [3H]QNB (quinuclidinyl benzilate) binding and autoradiography [3H]QNB binds with > 90% specificity to a single, saturable, high-affinity (Kd = 11.1 pM at 21 degrees C) class of binding sites. QNB binding sites are thought to correspond to ACh receptors, because muscarinic agonists compete for [3H]QNB binding and produce a hyperpolarization in the sinus venosus with the same order of potency. The concentrations of QNB binding sites in the sinus and atria are about twice those found in ventricle. The receptor density corresponds to the density of innervation measured by zinc iodide and osmium staining. Autoradiographic experiments show that [3H]QNB binding sites are distributed randomly over the entire surface of the muscle. This distribution of ACh receptors in cardiac muscle has important implications for the function of the cardiac neuroeffector junction. PMID:6968315

  15. Brain α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are involved in the secretion of noradrenaline and adrenaline from adrenal medulla in rats.

    PubMed

    Shimizu, Takahiro; Tanaka, Kenjiro; Hasegawa, Takashi; Yokotani, Kunihiko

    2011-03-11

    Recently, we reported that intracerebroventricularly (i.c.v.) administered (±)-epibatidine (a non-selective agonist of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors) elevates plasma noradrenaline and adrenaline through brain nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated mechanisms in rats. In the present study, we characterized the receptors involved in these responses using selective agonists and antagonists of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes in anesthetized rats. (±)-Epibatidine (5 and 10nmol/animal, i.c.v.) and (-)-nicotine (250 and 500nmol/animal, i.c.v.) both elevated plasma noradrenaline and adrenaline (adrenaline>noradrenaline) but the former was more efficient than the latter. The (±)-epibatidine (5nmol/animal, i.c.v.)-induced elevation of plasma catecholamines was reduced by dihydro-β-erythroidine (a selective antagonist of α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors) (100 and 300nmol/animal, i.c.v.), while methyllycaconitine (a selective antagonist of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors) (100 and 300nmol/animal, i.c.v.) had no effect on the (±)-epibatidine-induced responses. RJR-2403 (a selective agonist of α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors) (2.5 and 5μmol/animal, i.c.v.) elevated plasma noradrenaline and adrenaline (adrenaline>noradrenaline), while PNU-282987 (a selective agonist of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors) (2.5 and 5μmol/animal, i.c.v.) had no effect. Furthermore, the RJR-2403 (5μmol/animal, i.c.v.)-induced responses were abolished by acute bilateral adrenalectomy. Immunohistochemical procedures demonstrated the expression of α4 and β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits on the spinally projecting hypothalamic paraventricular neurons. Taken together, brain α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors seem to be involved in the secretion of noradrenaline and adrenaline from adrenal medulla in rats.

  16. M1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor agonism alters sleep without affecting memory consolidation.

    PubMed

    Nissen, Christoph; Power, Ann E; Nofzinger, Eric A; Feige, Bernd; Voderholzer, Ulrich; Kloepfer, Corinna; Waldheim, Bernhard; Radosa, Marc-Philipp; Berger, Mathias; Riemann, Dieter

    2006-11-01

    Preclinical studies have implicated cholinergic neurotransmission, specifically M1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) activation, in sleep-associated memory consolidation. In the present study, we investigated the effects of administering the direct M1 mAChR agonist RS-86 on pre-post sleep memory consolidation. Twenty healthy human participants were tested in a declarative word-list task and a procedural mirror-tracing task. RS-86 significantly reduced rapid eye movement (REM) sleep latency and slow wave sleep (SWS) duration in comparison with placebo. Presleep acquisition and postsleep recall rates were within the expected ranges. However, recall rates in both tasks were almost identical for the RS-86 and placebo conditions. These results indicate that selective M1 mAChR activation in healthy humans has no clinically relevant effect on pre-post sleep consolidation of declarative or procedural memories at a dose that reduces REM sleep latency and SWS duration.

  17. Dynamic heterogeneity and non-Gaussian statistics for acetylcholine receptors on live cell membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, W.; Song, H.; Su, Y.; Geng, L.; Ackerson, B. J.; Peng, H. B.; Tong, P.

    2016-05-01

    The Brownian motion of molecules at thermal equilibrium usually has a finite correlation time and will eventually be randomized after a long delay time, so that their displacement follows the Gaussian statistics. This is true even when the molecules have experienced a complex environment with a finite correlation time. Here, we report that the lateral motion of the acetylcholine receptors on live muscle cell membranes does not follow the Gaussian statistics for normal Brownian diffusion. From a careful analysis of a large volume of the protein trajectories obtained over a wide range of sampling rates and long durations, we find that the normalized histogram of the protein displacements shows an exponential tail, which is robust and universal for cells under different conditions. The experiment indicates that the observed non-Gaussian statistics and dynamic heterogeneity are inherently linked to the slow-active remodelling of the underlying cortical actin network.

  18. Design and synthesis of isoxazole containing bioisosteres of epibatidine as potent nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists.

    PubMed

    Singh, S; Avor, K S; Pouw, B; Seale, T W; Basmadjian, G P

    1999-10-01

    An efficient synthesis of isoxazole containing isosteres of epibatidine is described. The synthesis proceeded from N-tert-butoxycarbonyl (Boc)-exo-2-(methoxycarbonyl)-7-azabicyclo[2.2.1]heptane (9). Compound 9 was reacted with the dilithium salt of an appropriately substituted oxime in tetrahydrofuran (THF). Cyclodehydration of the resultant beta-keto oxime and deprotection of the N-Boc group in 5 N aqueous HCl afforded the isoxazole containing isosteres of epibatidine (6-8). The binding affinities of these compounds were determined at the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor for the displacement of [3H]cystisine. The unsubstituted isoxazole containing isostere (6) showed the lower binding potency compared to the 3'-methylisoxazole isostere (7). Substitution with a phenyl group at the 3'-position of the isoxazole significantly reduced the binding potency. The in vivo toxicological studies of these analogs were also performed. The LD50 of the analogs ranged in the order: Me > H > Ph.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. [Molecular dynamics simulations of migration of ions and molecules through the acetylcholine receptor channel].

    PubMed

    Shaĭtan, K V; Li, A; Tershkina, K B; Kirpichnikov, M P

    2007-01-01

    A dynamic model of the channel of an acetylcholine receptor in a closed state has been proposed. The channel is formed by five a-helices of subunit M2 and stabilized by the cyclic hydrocarbon (CH2)105. The migration of charged and unchanged van der Waals particles with a diameter of 7.72 A equivalent to the diameter of a hydrated sodium ion has been studied. The migration occurred by the action of external force applied to the complex along the channel axis. In the closed state, the inhibition of ions is due to two components: electrostatic interaction and steric constraints. The van der Waals channel gate is formed by residues 13'-A-Val255, B-Val261, C-Val269, D-Val255, and E-Ile264, and the negatively changed residues occurring in the upper part of the channel have a great effect on ion selectivity.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1996-03-01

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

  3. A method for soluble overexpression of the 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor extracellular domain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, Markus; Corringer, Pierre-Jean; Schott, Karin; Bacher, Adelbert; Changeux, Jean-Pierre

    2001-03-01

    We describe the construction of a soluble protein carrying the N-terminal extracellular domain (ECD) of the 7 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. The approach was to fuse the 7 ECD at the C and N termini of several monomeric and pentameric soluble carrier proteins and to investigate the soluble expression of the product in Escherichia coli. An initial screening of six carrier proteins resulted in the selection of a fusion protein comprising, from the N to the C terminus, the maltose binding protein, a 17-aa linker containing an enterokinase binding site, and the α7 ECD. This protein is soluble upon expression in bacteria and is purified by affinity chromatography. It binds the competitive nicotinic antagonist α-bungarotoxin with 2.5 μM affinity and displays a CD spectrum corresponding to a folded protein. The method might be suitable to produce large quantities of protein for crystallization and immunochemical experiments.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.".

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Acetylcholine Receptor and Ion Conductance Modulator Sites at the Murine Neuromuscular Junction: Evidence from Specific Toxin Reactions

    PubMed Central

    Albuquerque, Edson X.; Barnard, Eric A.; Chiu, Tieh H.; Lapa, Antonio J.; Dolly, J. Oliver; Jansson, Sten-Erik; Daly, John; Witkop, Bernhard

    1973-01-01

    The perhydro derivative of histrionicotoxin reversibly blocks the excitatory ionic transduction system in the synaptic and sarcolemmal membranes of mammalian skeletal muscle cells. The efficacy of perhydrohistrionicotoxin as an antagonist at the post-synaptic membrane is increased by the transient presence of acetylcholine in the endplate of innervated muscles and at extrajunctional receptors in denervated muscles. α-Bungarotoxin and [3H]monoacetyl-α-bungarotoxin block the endplate acetylcholine receptors, each binding to the same extent. The effect of bungarotoxin is partially reversible. These electrophysiological results, together with the effects of perhydrohistrionicotoxin and/or d-tubocurarine on the binding of [3H]monoacetyl-α-bungarotoxin at endplates of murine diaphragm muscle and on the bungarotoxin-elicited irreversible blockade of neuromuscular transmission, suggest that at least two types of sites participate in the synaptic excitation by acetylcholine. One site, competitively blocked by bungarotoxin and by curare, is presumably the acetylcholine receptor. Binding of bungarotoxin at this site is responsible for an irreversible blockade of neuromuscular transmission. The second site, competitively blocked by bungarotoxin and perhydrohistrionicotoxin, is proposed to be part of the cholinergic ion conductance modulator. Binding of bungarotoxin to this site does not result in an irreversible blockade. Images PMID:4351811

  10. Long-term effects of methamphetamine exposure on cognitive function and muscarinic acetylcholine receptor levels in mice.

    PubMed

    Siegel, Jessica A; Craytor, Michael J; Raber, Jacob

    2010-10-01

    Exposure to methamphetamine during brain development impairs cognition in humans and rodents. In mice, these impairments are more severe in females than males. Genetic factors, such as apolipoprotein E genotype, may modulate the cognitive effects of methamphetamine. Methamphetamine-induced alterations in the brain acetylcholine system may contribute to the cognitive effects of methamphetamine and may also be modulated by apolipoprotein E isoform. We assessed the long-term effects of methamphetamine exposure during brain development on cognitive function and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in mice, and whether apolipoprotein E isoform modulates these effects. Mice expressing human apolipoprotein E3 or E4 were exposed to methamphetamine (5 mg/kg) or saline once a day from postnatal days 11-20 and behaviorally tested in adulthood. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor binding was measured in the hippocampus and cortex. Methamphetamine exposure impaired novel location recognition in female, but not male, mice. Methamphetamine-exposed male and female mice showed impaired novel object recognition and increased number of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the hippocampus. The cognitive and cholinergic effects of methamphetamine were similar in apolipoprotein E3 and E4 mice. Thus, the cholinergic system, but not apolipoprotein E isoform, might play an important role in the long-term methamphetamine-induced cognitive deficits in adulthood.

  11. Pharmacological and ionic characterizations of the muscarinic receptors modulating (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine release from rat cortical synaptosomes

    SciTech Connect

    Meyer, E.M.; Otero, D.H.

    1985-05-01

    The muscarinic receptors that modulate acetylcholine release from rat cortical synaptosomes were characterized with respect to sensitivity to drugs that act selectively at M1 or M2 receptor subtypes, as well as to changes in ionic strength and membrane potential. The modulatory receptors appear to be of the M2 type, since they are activated by carbachol, acetylcholine, methacholine, oxotremorine, and bethanechol, but not by pilocarpine, and are blocked by atropine, scopolamine, and gallamine (at high concentrations), but not by pirenzepine or dicyclomine. The ED50S for carbachol, acetylcholine, and oxotremorine are less than 10 microM, suggesting that the high affinity state of the receptor is functional. High ionic strength induced by raising the NaCl concentration has no effect on agonist (oxotremorine) potency, but increases the efficacy of this compound, which disagrees with receptor-binding studies. On the other hand, depolarization with either KCl or with veratridine (20 microM) reduces agonist potencies by approximately an order of magnitude, suggesting a potential mechanism for receptor regulation.

  12. Symposium overview: mechanism of action of nicotine on neuronal acetylcholine receptors, from molecule to behavior.

    PubMed

    Narahashi, T; Fenster, C P; Quick, M W; Lester, R A; Marszalec, W; Aistrup, G L; Sattelle, D B; Martin, B R; Levin, E D

    2000-10-01

    Nicotine has long been known to interact with nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptors since Langley used it extensively to chart sympathetic ganglia a century ago. It has also been used as an effective insecticide. However, it was not until the 1990s that the significance of nicotine was increasingly recognized from the toxicological, pharmacological, and environmental points of view. This is partly because studies of neuronal nicotinic ACh receptors are rapidly emerging from orphan status, fueled by several lines of research. Since Alzheimer's disease is known to be associated with down-regulation of cholinergic activity in the brain, a variety of nicotine derivatives are being tested and developed for treatment of the disease. Public awareness of the adverse effects of nicotine has reached the highest level recently. Since insect resistance to insecticides is one of the most serious issues in the pest-control arena, it is an urgent requirement to develop new insecticides that act on target sites not shared by the existing insecticides. The neuronal nicotinic ACh receptor is one of them, and new nicotinoids are being developed. Thus, the time is ripe to discuss the mechanism of action of nicotine from a variety of angles, including the molecular, physiological, and behavioral points of view. This Symposium covered a wide area of nicotine studies: genetic, genomic, and functional aspects of nicotinic ACh receptors were studied, as related to anthelmintics and insecticides; interactions between ethanol and nicotine out the ACh receptor were analyzed, in an attempt to explain the well-known heavy drinker-heavy smoker correlation; the mechanisms that underlie the desensitization of ACh receptors were studied as related to nicotine action; selective pharmacological profiles of nicotine, and descriptions of some derivatives were described; and chronic nicotine infusion effects on memory were examined using animal models.

  13. 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.

  14. Inhibitory effect of strychnine on acetylcholine receptor activation in bovine adrenal medullary chromaffin cells.

    PubMed Central

    Kuijpers, G A; Vergara, L A; Calvo, S; Yadid, G

    1994-01-01

    1. Strychnine, which is known as a potent and selective antagonist of the inhibitory glycine receptor in the central nervous system, inhibits the nicotinic stimulation of catecholamine release from bovine cultured adrenal chromaffin cells in a concentration-dependent (1-100 microM) manner. At 10 microM nicotine, the IC50 value for strychnine is approximately 30 microM. Strychnine also inhibits the nicotine-induced membrane depolarization and increase in intracellular Ca2+ concentration. 2. The inhibitory action of strychnine is reversible and is selective for nicotinic stimulation, with no effect observed on secretion elicited by a high external K+ concentration, histamine or angiotensin II. 3. Strychnine competes with nicotine in its effect, but not modify the apparent positive cooperatively of the nicotine binding sites. In the absence of nicotine, strychnine has no effect on catecholamine release. Glycine does not affect catecholamine release nor the inhibitory action of strychnine on this release. 4. These results suggest that strychnine interacts with the agonist binding site of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in chromaffin cells, thus exerting a pharmacological effect independently of the glycine receptor. PMID:7834198

  15. Unraveling a molecular determinant for clathrin-independent internalization of the M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor

    PubMed Central

    Wan, Min; Zhang, Wenhua; Tian, Yangli; Xu, Chanjuan; Xu, Tao; Liu, Jianfeng; Zhang, Rongying

    2015-01-01

    Endocytosis and postendocytic sorting of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) is important for the regulation of both their cell surface density and signaling profile. Unlike the mechanisms of clathrin-dependent endocytosis (CDE), the mechanisms underlying the control of GPCR signaling by clathrin-independent endocytosis (CIE) remain largely unknown. Among the muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs), the M4 mAChR undergoes CDE and recycling, whereas the M2 mAChR is internalized through CIE and targeted to lysosomes. Here we investigated the endocytosis and postendocytic trafficking of M2 mAChR based on a comparative analysis of the third cytoplasmic domain in M2 and M4 mAChRs. For the first time, we identified that the sequence 374KKKPPPS380 servers as a sorting signal for the clathrin-independent internalization of M2 mAChR. Switching 374KKKPPPS380 to the i3 loop of the M4 mAChR shifted the receptor into lysosomes through the CIE pathway; and therefore away from CDE and recycling. We also found another previously unidentified sequence that guides CDE of the M2 mAChR, 361VARKIVKMTKQPA373, which is normally masked in the presence of the downstream sequence 374KKKPPPS380. Taken together, our data indicate that endocytosis and postendocytic sorting of GPCRs that undergo CIE could be sequence-dependent. PMID:26094760

  16. Binding affinities of anti-acetylcholine receptor autoantibodies in myasthenia gravis

    SciTech Connect

    Bray, J.J.; Drachman, D.B.

    1982-01-01

    Antibodies directed against acetylcholine (ACh) receptors are present in the sera of nearly 90% of patients with myasthenia gravis (MG), and are involved in the pathogenesis of this autoimmune disease. However, the antibody titers measured by the standard radioimmunoassay correspond poorly with the clinical severity of the disease. To determine whether this disparity could be accounted for by differences in the binding affinities of anti-ACh receptor antibodies in different patients, we have measured the binding affinities of these autoantibodies in 15 sera from MG patients. The affinity constants (K/sub o/), as determined by Scatchard analysis, were all in the range of 10/sup 10/ M/sup -1/, comparable to the highest values reported in immunized animals. The affinity constants were truly representative of the population of autoantibodies detected by the radioimmunoassay, as shown by the remarkable linearity of the Scatchard plots (r/sup 2/>0.90) and the close correlation between the antibody titers determined by extrapolation of the Scatchard plots and by saturation analysis (r = 0.99; p < 0.001). There was only a 6-fold variation in affinity constants measured in this series of patients despite widely differing antibody titers and severity of the disease. Factors other than the titer and affinity of anti-ACh receptor antibodies may correlate better with the clinical manifestations of MG.

  17. Molecular Modeling of the M3 Acetylcholine Muscarinic Receptor and Its Binding Site

    PubMed Central

    Martinez-Archundia, Marlet; Cordomi, Arnau; Garriga, Pere; Perez, Juan J.

    2012-01-01

    The present study reports the results of a combined computational and site mutagenesis study designed to provide new insights into the orthosteric binding site of the human M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor. For this purpose a three-dimensional structure of the receptor at atomic resolution was built by homology modeling, using the crystallographic structure of bovine rhodopsin as a template. Then, the antagonist N-methylscopolamine was docked in the model and subsequently embedded in a lipid bilayer for its refinement using molecular dynamics simulations. Two different lipid bilayer compositions were studied: one component palmitoyl-oleyl phosphatidylcholine (POPC) and two-component palmitoyl-oleyl phosphatidylcholine/palmitoyl-oleyl phosphatidylserine (POPC-POPS). Analysis of the results suggested that residues F222 and T235 may contribute to the ligand-receptor recognition. Accordingly, alanine mutants at positions 222 and 235 were constructed, expressed, and their binding properties determined. The results confirmed the role of these residues in modulating the binding affinity of the ligand. PMID:22500107

  18. Unraveling a molecular determinant for clathrin-independent internalization of the M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Wan, Min; Zhang, Wenhua; Tian, Yangli; Xu, Chanjuan; Xu, Tao; Liu, Jianfeng; Zhang, Rongying

    2015-06-22

    Endocytosis and postendocytic sorting of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) is important for the regulation of both their cell surface density and signaling profile. Unlike the mechanisms of clathrin-dependent endocytosis (CDE), the mechanisms underlying the control of GPCR signaling by clathrin-independent endocytosis (CIE) remain largely unknown. Among the muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs), the M4 mAChR undergoes CDE and recycling, whereas the M2 mAChR is internalized through CIE and targeted to lysosomes. Here we investigated the endocytosis and postendocytic trafficking of M2 mAChR based on a comparative analysis of the third cytoplasmic domain in M2 and M4 mAChRs. For the first time, we identified that the sequence (374)KKKPPPS(380) servers as a sorting signal for the clathrin-independent internalization of M2 mAChR. Switching (374)KKKPPPS(380) to the i3 loop of the M4 mAChR shifted the receptor into lysosomes through the CIE pathway; and therefore away from CDE and recycling. We also found another previously unidentified sequence that guides CDE of the M2 mAChR, (361)VARKIVKMTKQPA(373), which is normally masked in the presence of the downstream sequence (374)KKKPPPS(380). Taken together, our data indicate that endocytosis and postendocytic sorting of GPCRs that undergo CIE could be sequence-dependent.

  19. Effects of isoflurane on the actions of neuromuscular blockers on the muscle nicotine acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Li, Chuanxiang; Yao, Shanglong; Nie, Hui; Lü, Bin

    2004-01-01

    In this study, we tested the hypothesis that volatile anesthetic enhancement of muscle relaxation is the result of combined drug effects on the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. The poly A m RNA from muscle by isolation were microinjected into Xenopus oocytes for receptor expression. Concentration-effect curves for the inhibition of Ach-induced currents were established for vecuronium, rocuranium, and isoflurane. Subsequently, inhibitory effects of NDMRs were studied in the presence of the isoflurane at a concentration equivalent to half the concentration producing a 50% inhibition alone. All tested drugs produced rapid and readily reversible concentration-dependent inhibition. The 50% inhibitory concentration values were 889 micromol/L (95% CI: 711-1214 micromol). 33.4 micromol (95% CI: 27.1-41.7 nmol) and 9.2 nmol (95% CI: 7.9-12.3 nmol) for isoflurane. rocuranium and vecuronium, respectively. Coapplication of isoflurane significantly enhanced the inhibitory effects of rocuranium and vecuronium, and it was especially so at low concentration of NMDRs. Isoflurane increases the potency of NDMRs, possibly by enhancing antagonist affinity at the receptor site.

  20. 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

  1. Stoichiometry for α-bungarotoxin block of α7 acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    daCosta, Corrie J. B.; Free, Chris R.; Sine, Steven M.

    2015-01-01

    α-Bungarotoxin (α-Btx) binds to the five agonist binding sites on the homopentameric α7-acetylcholine receptor, yet the number of bound α-Btx molecules required to prevent agonist-induced channel opening remains unknown. To determine the stoichiometry for α-Btx blockade, we generate receptors comprised of wild-type and α-Btx-resistant subunits, tag one of the subunit types with conductance mutations to report subunit stoichiometry, and following incubation with α-Btx, monitor opening of individual receptor channels with defined subunit stoichiometry. We find that a single α-Btx-sensitive subunit confers nearly maximal suppression of channel opening, despite four binding sites remaining unoccupied by α-Btx and accessible to the agonist. Given structural evidence that α-Btx locks the agonist binding site in an inactive conformation, we conclude that the dominant mechanism of antagonism is non-competitive, originating from conformational arrest of the binding sites, and that the five α7 subunits are interdependent and maintain conformational symmetry in the open channel state. PMID:26282895

  2. 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.

  3. Mice Lacking M1 and M3 Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors Have Impaired Odor Discrimination and Learning

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Wilson; Singh, Sanmeet; Keshav, Taj; Dewan, Ramita; Eberly, Christian; Maurer, Robert; Nunez-Parra, Alexia; Araneda, Ricardo C.

    2017-01-01

    The cholinergic system has extensive projections to the olfactory bulb (OB) where it produces a state-dependent regulation of sensory gating. Previous work has shown a prominent role of muscarinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptors (mAChRs) in regulating the excitability of OB neurons, in particular the M1 receptor. Here, we examined the contribution of M1 and M3 mAChR subtypes to olfactory processing using mice with a genetic deletion of these receptors, the M1−/− and the M1/M3−/− knockout (KO) mice. Genetic ablation of the M1 and M3 mAChRs resulted in a significant deficit in odor discrimination of closely related molecules, including stereoisomers. However, the discrimination of dissimilar molecules, social odors (e.g., urine) and novel object recognition was not affected. In addition the KO mice showed impaired learning in an associative odor-learning task, learning to discriminate odors at a slower rate, indicating that both short and long-term memory is disrupted by mAChR dysfunction. Interestingly, the KO mice exhibited decreased olfactory neurogenesis at younger ages, a deficit that was not maintained in older animals. In older animals, the olfactory deficit could be restored by increasing the number of new born neurons integrated into the OB after exposing them to an olfactory enriched environment, suggesting that muscarinic modulation and adult neurogenesis could be two different mechanism used by the olfactory system to improve olfactory processing. PMID:28210219

  4. Structural Characterization of the Putative Cholinergic Binding Region alpha(179-201) of the Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor. Part 1. Review and Experimental Design.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1993-04-01

    alpha-subunit of the acetylcholine receptor. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci USA, vol. 82, pp. 3490-3493, 1985 Neumann, D, Barchan , D., Safran, A., GershoniJ., and...pp. 3008-3011, 1986 MAY. Neumann, D., Barchan , D., Fuchs, S., Analysis of ligand binding to the synthetic dodeca-peptide 185-1% of the acetylcholine

  5. Schwann cells sense and control acetylcholine spillover at the neuromuscular junction by α7 nicotinic receptors and butyrylcholinesterase.

    PubMed

    Petrov, Konstantin A; Girard, Emmanuelle; Nikitashina, Alexandra D; Colasante, Cesare; Bernard, Véronique; Nurullin, Leniz; Leroy, Jacqueline; Samigullin, Dmitry; Colak, Omer; Nikolsky, Evgenii; Plaud, Benoit; Krejci, Eric

    2014-09-03

    Terminal Schwann cells (TSCs) are key components of the mammalian neuromuscular junction (NMJ). How the TSCs sense the synaptic activity in physiological conditions remains unclear. We have taken advantage of the distinct localization of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and butyrylcholinesterase (BChE) at the NMJ to bring out the function of different ACh receptors (AChRs). AChE is clustered by the collagen Q in the synaptic cleft and prevents the repetitive activation of muscle nicotinic AChRs. We found that BChE is anchored at the TSC by a proline-rich membrane anchor, the small transmembrane protein anchor of brain AChE. When BChE was specifically inhibited, ACh release was significant depressed through the activation of α7 nAChRs localized on the TSC and activated by the spillover of ACh. When both AChE and BChE were inhibited, the spillover increased and induced a dramatic reduction of ACh release that compromised the muscle twitch triggered by the nerve stimulation. α7 nAChRs at the TSC may act as a sensor for spillover of ACh adjusted by BChE and may represent an extrasynaptic sensor for homeostasis at the NMJ. In myasthenic rats, selective inhibition of AChE is more effective in rescuing muscle function than the simultaneous inhibition of AChE and BChE because the concomitant inhibition of BChE counteracts the positive action of AChE inhibition. These results show that inhibition of BChE should be avoided during the treatment of myasthenia and the pharmacological reversal of residual curarization after anesthesia.

  6. The mongoose acetylcholine receptor alpha-subunit: analysis of glycosylation and alpha-bungarotoxin binding.

    PubMed

    Asher, O; Jensen, B S; Lupu-Meiri, M; Oron, Y; Fuchs, S

    1998-04-17

    The mongoose AChR alpha-subunit has been cloned and shown to be highly homologous to other AChR alpha-subunits, with only six differences in amino acid residues at positions that are conserved in animal species that bind alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BTX). Four of these six substitutions cluster in the ligand binding site, and one of them, Asn-187, forms a consensus N-glycosylation site. The mongoose glycosylated alpha-subunit has a higher apparent molecular mass than that of the rat glycosylated alpha-subunit, probably resulting from the additional glycosylation at Asn-187 of the mongoose subunit. The in vitro translated mongoose alpha-subunit, in a glycosylated or non-glycosylated form, does not bind alpha-BTX, indicating that lack of alpha-BTX binding can be achieved also in the absence of glycosylation.

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

    PubMed

    Taillebois, Emiliane; Thany, Steeve H

    2016-09-01

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

  8. Acetylcholine-induced phosphorylation in isolated outer hair cells.

    PubMed

    Szõnyi, M; Csermely, P; Sziklai, I

    1999-03-01

    Two groups of isolated, surviving outer hair cells (OHCs) of guinea pig cochleas (n = 20, for each group) were treated with 10 microM acetylcholine or acetylcholine plus strichnine (an alpha9 nAChR antagonist), respectively, under short-term tissue culture conditions. The protein content of the cell homogenates was separated by SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, Western blotted and labelled with an antibody against phosphoserine residues. Signals were detected using the ECL system. Acetylcholine challenge of the OHCs resulted in a difference in the pattern of phosphorylated proteins from those of strichnine pretreated cells. A 220 kDa and a 120 kDa protein expressed a more intense phosphorylated state in the ACh group compared with the ACh plus strichnine group. The 220 kDa phosphoprotein is in the range of the cytoskeletal protein beta-fodrin, whereas the 120 kDa fraction is similar to alpha-fodrin or an ankyrin isoform. Phosphorylation of proteins due to activation of the AChR by agonist can play a role in the signalling mechanism between receptor activation and increase in the electromotile capability of isolated OHCs.

  9. 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

  10. Tracking the Molecular Evolution of Calcium Permeability in a Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Lipovsek, Marcela; Fierro, Angélica; Pérez, Edwin G.; Boffi, Juan C.; Millar, Neil S.; Fuchs, Paul A.; Katz, Eleonora; Elgoyhen, Ana Belén

    2014-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are a family of ligand-gated nonselective cationic channels that participate in fundamental physiological processes at both the central and the peripheral nervous system. The extent of calcium entry through ligand-gated ion channels defines their distinct functions. The α9α10 nicotinic cholinergic receptor, expressed in cochlear hair cells, is a peculiar member of the family as it shows differences in the extent of calcium permeability across species. In particular, mammalian α9α10 receptors are among the ligand-gated ion channels which exhibit the highest calcium selectivity. This acquired differential property provides the unique opportunity of studying how protein function was shaped along evolutionary history, by tracking its evolutionary record and experimentally defining the amino acid changes involved. We have applied a molecular evolution approach of ancestral sequence reconstruction, together with molecular dynamics simulations and an evolutionary-based mutagenesis strategy, in order to trace the molecular events that yielded a high calcium permeable nicotinic α9α10 mammalian receptor. Only three specific amino acid substitutions in the α9 subunit were directly involved. These are located at the extracellular vestibule and at the exit of the channel pore and not at the transmembrane region 2 of the protein as previously thought. Moreover, we show that these three critical substitutions only increase calcium permeability in the context of the mammalian but not the avian receptor, stressing the relevance of overall protein structure on defining functional properties. These results highlight the importance of tracking evolutionarily acquired changes in protein sequence underlying fundamental functional properties of ligand-gated ion channels. PMID:25193338

  11. 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.

  12. Tracking the molecular evolution of calcium permeability in a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Lipovsek, Marcela; Fierro, Angélica; Pérez, Edwin G; Boffi, Juan C; Millar, Neil S; Fuchs, Paul A; Katz, Eleonora; Elgoyhen, Ana Belén

    2014-12-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are a family of ligand-gated nonselective cationic channels that participate in fundamental physiological processes at both the central and the peripheral nervous system. The extent of calcium entry through ligand-gated ion channels defines their distinct functions. The α9α10 nicotinic cholinergic receptor, expressed in cochlear hair cells, is a peculiar member of the family as it shows differences in the extent of calcium permeability across species. In particular, mammalian α9α10 receptors are among the ligand-gated ion channels which exhibit the highest calcium selectivity. This acquired differential property provides the unique opportunity of studying how protein function was shaped along evolutionary history, by tracking its evolutionary record and experimentally defining the amino acid changes involved. We have applied a molecular evolution approach of ancestral sequence reconstruction, together with molecular dynamics simulations and an evolutionary-based mutagenesis strategy, in order to trace the molecular events that yielded a high calcium permeable nicotinic α9α10 mammalian receptor. Only three specific amino acid substitutions in the α9 subunit were directly involved. These are located at the extracellular vestibule and at the exit of the channel pore and not at the transmembrane region 2 of the protein as previously thought. Moreover, we show that these three critical substitutions only increase calcium permeability in the context of the mammalian but not the avian receptor, stressing the relevance of overall protein structure on defining functional properties. These results highlight the importance of tracking evolutionarily acquired changes in protein sequence underlying fundamental functional properties of ligand-gated ion channels.

  13. 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.

  14. The effective opening of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors with single agonist binding sites

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Dustin K.; Stokes, Clare; Horenstein, Nicole A.

    2011-01-01

    We have identified a means by which agonist-evoked responses of nicotinic receptors can be conditionally eliminated. Modification of α7L119C mutants by the sulfhydryl reagent 2-aminoethyl methanethiosulfonate (MTSEA) reduces responses to acetylcholine (ACh) by more than 97%, whereas corresponding mutations in muscle-type receptors produce effects that depend on the specific subunits mutated and ACh concentration. We coexpressed α7L119C subunits with pseudo wild-type α7C116S subunits, as well as ACh-insensitive α7Y188F subunits with wild-type α7 subunits in Xenopus laevis oocytes using varying ratios of cRNA. When mutant α7 cRNA was coinjected at a 5:1 ratio with wild-type cRNA, net charge responses to 300 µM ACh were retained by α7L119C-containing mutants after MTSEA modification and by the ACh-insensitive Y188F-containing mutants, even though the expected number of ACh-sensitive wild-type binding sites would on average be fewer than two per receptor. Responses of muscle-type receptors with one MTSEA-sensitive subunit were reduced at low ACh concentrations, but much less of an effect was observed when ACh concentrations were high (1 mM), indicating that saturation of a single binding site with agonist can evoke strong activation of nicotinic ACh receptors. Single-channel patch clamp analysis revealed that the burst durations of fetal wild-type and α1β1γδL121C receptors were equivalent until the α1β1γδL121C mutants were exposed to MTSEA, after which the majority (81%) of bursts were brief (≤2 ms). The longest duration events of the receptors modified at only one binding site were similar to the long bursts of native receptors traditionally associated with the activation of receptors with two sites containing bound agonists. PMID:21444659

  15. Conformational properties of the acetylcholine receptor as revealed by studies with constrained depolarizing ligands

    PubMed Central

    Wassermann, N. H.; Bartels, E.; Erlanger, B. F.

    1979-01-01

    Conformational aspects of the acetylcholine receptor (AcChoR) of Electrophorus electricus have been examined by studies of its interaction with structurally related, constrained aromatic bis quaternary compounds. Among the compounds synthesized was 3,3′-bis[α-(trimethylammonium)-methyl]azobenzene dibromide (3,3′-bisQ). This compound is photochromic and can exist in a cis or trans isomeric form, both of which have now been isolated in pure form. Trans-3,3′-bisQ is the most potent activator known, producing a 60-mV depolarization at 0.2 μM and 50% activity at 0.06 μM. The cis isomer is less than 1% as active. Its high activity and constrained structure suggest that trans-3,3′-bisQ can be considered to be a “template” of the combining site of AcChoR, when the latter is in the activated state. The following conclusions can then be drawn concerning the AcChoR binding site. (i) Depolarization can occur by interaction with reagents that are essentially inflexible. (ii) The binding site has a planar hydrophobic region that interacts with methylene groups of acetylcholine and with hydrophobic areas in general. (iii) In the same plane as the hydrophobic area is a site that interacts with electron-donating functional groups including the carbonyl oxygen of acetylcholine and the azo nitrogens of trans-3,3′-bisQ. (iv) About 1.5 Å out of the plane of the hydrophobic and the electron acceptor site is an anionic site; when the AcChoR is in the activated state, this site is separated from the electron acceptor site by 5.2 Å and from another anionic site by 11 Å. (v) The anionic sites are located within a cleft of limited size, sufficient to accommodate quaternary methyl groups. (vi) Although depolarization can occur with reagents that possess only hydrophobic and cationic groups if their geometric arrangement is proper, the highest activity resides in compounds capable of all of the interactions cited above. Images PMID:284340

  16. Decreased response to acetylcholine during aging of aplysia neuron R15.

    PubMed

    Akhmedov, Komolitdin; Rizzo, Valerio; Kadakkuzha, Beena M; Carter, Christopher J; Magoski, Neil S; Capo, Thomas R; Puthanveettil, Sathyanarayanan V

    2013-01-01

    How aging affects the communication between neurons is poorly understood. To address this question, we have studied the electrophysiological properties of identified neuron R15 of the marine mollusk Aplysia californica. R15 is a bursting neuron in the abdominal ganglia of the central nervous system and is implicated in reproduction, water balance, and heart function. Exposure to acetylcholine (ACh) causes an increase in R15 burst firing. Whole-cell recordings of R15 in the intact ganglia dissected from mature and old Aplysia showed specific changes in burst firing and properties of action potentials induced by ACh. We found that while there were no significant changes in resting membrane potential and latency in response to ACh, the burst number and burst duration is altered during aging. The action potential waveform analysis showed that unlike mature neurons, the duration of depolarization and the repolarization amplitude and duration did not change in old neurons in response to ACh. Furthermore, single neuron quantitative analysis of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) suggested alteration of expression of specific AChRs in R15 neurons during aging. These results suggest a defect in cholinergic transmission during aging of the R15 neuron.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Activation and modulation of human α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by the neonicotinoids clothianidin and imidacloprid.

    PubMed

    Li, Ping; Ann, Jason; Akk, Gustav

    2011-08-01

    Neonicotinoids are synthetic, nicotine-derived insecticides used for agricultural and household pest control. Though highly effective at activating insect nicotinic receptors, many neonicotinoids are also capable of directly activating and/or modulating the activation of vertebrate nicotinic receptors. In this study, we have investigated the actions of the neonicotinoids clothianidin (CTD) and imidacloprid (IMI) on human neuronal α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. The data demonstrate that the compounds are weak agonists of the human receptors with relative peak currents of 1-4% of the response to 1 mM acetylcholine (ACh). Coapplication of IMI strongly inhibited currents elicited by ACh. From Schild plot analysis, we estimate that the affinity of IMI for the human α4β2 receptor is 18 μM. The application of low concentrations of CTD potentiated responses to low concentrations of ACh, suggesting that receptors occupied by one ACh and one CTD molecule have a higher gating efficacy than receptors with one ACh bound. Interestingly, subunit stoichiometry affected inhibition by CTD, with (α4)(2) (β2)(3) receptors significantly more strongly inhibited than the (α4)(3) (β2)(2) receptors.

  1. What is the effect of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor stimulation on osteoarthritis in a rodent animal model?

    PubMed Central

    Bock, Kilian; Plaass, Christian; Coger, Vincent; Peck, Claas-Tido; Reimers, Kerstin; Stukenborg-Colsman, Christina; Claassen, Leif

    2016-01-01

    Objectives: Despite the rising number of patients with osteoarthritis, no sufficient chondroprotective and prophylactic therapy for osteoarthritis has been established yet. The purpose of this study was to verify whether stimulation of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor via nicotine has a beneficial effect on cartilage degeneration in the development of osteoarthritis and is capable of reducing the expression of proinflammatory cytokines and cartilage degrading enzymes in synovial membranes after osteoarthritis induction. Methods: Experimental osteoarthritis was induced in Lewis rats using a standardized osteoarthritis model with monoiodoacetate. A total of 16 Lewis rats were randomized into four groups: control, sham + nicotine application, osteoarthritis, and osteoarthritis + nicotine application. Nicotine (0.625 mg/kg twice daily) was administered intraperitoneally for 42 days. We analyzed histological sections, radiological images and the expression of the proinflammatory cytokines, such as interleukin-1β, tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-6, and of matrix metalloproteases 3, 9 and 13 and tissue inhibitors of metalloprotease-1 in synovial membranes via quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Results: Histological and x-ray examination revealed cartilage degeneration in the osteoarthritis group compared to control or sham + nicotine groups (histological control vs osteoarthritis: p = 0.002 and x-ray control vs osteoarthritis: p = 0.004). Nicotine treatment reduced the cartilage degeneration without significant differences. Osteoarthritis induction led to a higher expression of proinflammatory cytokines and matrix metalloproteases as compared to control groups. This effect was attenuated after nicotine administration. The differences of proinflammatory cytokines and matrix metalloproteases did not reach statistical significance. Conclusion: With the present small-scale study, we could not prove a positive effect of nicotinic

  2. How the mongoose can fight the snake: the binding site of the mongoose acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Barchan, D; Kachalsky, S; Neumann, D; Vogel, Z; Ovadia, M; Kochva, E; Fuchs, S

    1992-01-01

    The ligand binding site of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AcChoR) is within a short peptide from the alpha subunit that includes the tandem cysteine residues at positions 192 and 193. To elucidate the molecular basis of the binding properties of the AcChoR, we chose to study nonclassical muscle AcChoRs from animals that are resistant to alpha-neurotoxins. We have previously reported that the resistance of snake AcChoR to alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BTX) may be accounted for by several major substitutions in the ligand binding site of the receptor. In the present study, we have analyzed the binding site of AcChoR from the mongoose, which is also resistant to alpha-neurotoxins. It was shown that mongoose AcChoR does not bind alpha-BTX in vivo or in vitro. cDNA fragments of the alpha subunit of mongoose AcChoR corresponding to codons 122-205 and including the presumed ligand binding site were cloned, sequenced, and expressed in Escherichia coli. The expressed protein fragments of the mongoose, as well as of snake receptors, do not bind alpha-BTX. The mongoose fragment is highly homologous (greater than 90%) to the respective mouse fragment. Out of the seven amino acid differences between the mongoose and mouse in this region, five cluster in the presumed ligand binding site, close to cysteines 192 and 193. These changes are at positions 187 (Trp----Asn), 189 (Phe----Thr), 191 (Ser----Ala), 194 (Pro----Leu), and 197 (Pro----His). The mongoose like the snake AcChoR has a potential glycosylation site in the binding site domain. Sequence comparison between species suggests that substitutions at positions 187, 189, and 194 are important in determining the resistance of mongoose and snake AcChoR to alpha-BTX. In addition, it was shown that amino acid residues that had been reported to be necessary for acetylcholine binding are conserved in the toxin-resistant animals as well. Images PMID:1380164

  3. How the mongoose can fight the snake: the binding site of the mongoose acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Barchan, D; Kachalsky, S; Neumann, D; Vogel, Z; Ovadia, M; Kochva, E; Fuchs, S

    1992-08-15

    The ligand binding site of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AcChoR) is within a short peptide from the alpha subunit that includes the tandem cysteine residues at positions 192 and 193. To elucidate the molecular basis of the binding properties of the AcChoR, we chose to study nonclassical muscle AcChoRs from animals that are resistant to alpha-neurotoxins. We have previously reported that the resistance of snake AcChoR to alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BTX) may be accounted for by several major substitutions in the ligand binding site of the receptor. In the present study, we have analyzed the binding site of AcChoR from the mongoose, which is also resistant to alpha-neurotoxins. It was shown that mongoose AcChoR does not bind alpha-BTX in vivo or in vitro. cDNA fragments of the alpha subunit of mongoose AcChoR corresponding to codons 122-205 and including the presumed ligand binding site were cloned, sequenced, and expressed in Escherichia coli. The expressed protein fragments of the mongoose, as well as of snake receptors, do not bind alpha-BTX. The mongoose fragment is highly homologous (greater than 90%) to the respective mouse fragment. Out of the seven amino acid differences between the mongoose and mouse in this region, five cluster in the presumed ligand binding site, close to cysteines 192 and 193. These changes are at positions 187 (Trp----Asn), 189 (Phe----Thr), 191 (Ser----Ala), 194 (Pro----Leu), and 197 (Pro----His). The mongoose like the snake AcChoR has a potential glycosylation site in the binding site domain. Sequence comparison between species suggests that substitutions at positions 187, 189, and 194 are important in determining the resistance of mongoose and snake AcChoR to alpha-BTX. In addition, it was shown that amino acid residues that had been reported to be necessary for acetylcholine binding are conserved in the toxin-resistant animals as well.

  4. 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

  5. Agarwood induced laxative effects via acetylcholine receptors on loperamide-induced constipation in mice.

    PubMed

    Kakino, Mamoru; Izuta, Hiroshi; Ito, Tetsuro; Tsuruma, Kazuhiro; Araki, Yoko; Shimazawa, Masamitsu; Oyama, Masayoshi; Iinuma, Munekazu; Hara, Hideaki

    2010-01-01

    Agarwood (Aquilaria sinensis, Aquilaria crasna) is well known as an incense in the oriental region such as Thailand, Taiwan, and Cambodia, and is used as a digestive in traditional medicine. We investigated the laxative effects and mechanism of agarwood leaves extracted with ethanol (EEA-1, Aquilaria sinensis; EEA-2, Aquilaria crasna). EEA-1, EEA-2, the main constituents of EEAs (mangiferin, and genkwanin-5-O-primeveroside), and senna increased the frequency and weight of stools in loperamide-induced constipation model mice. EEA-1 and EEA-2 did not induce diarrhea as a side effect, but senna induced severe diarrhea. EEA-1 and senna increased gastro-intestinal (GI) transit in the model mice. EEA-1, but not senna, also increased the intestinal tension of isolated jejunum and ileum in guinea pigs, and the tension increase was blocked by atropine, a muscarinic receptor antagonist, but not by other inhibitors (granicetron, pyrilamine, or bradykinin-antagonist peptide). Furthermore, the increase in frequency and weight of stools induced by EEA-1 were blocked by pre-administration of atropine in the model mice. These findings indicate that EEAs exerted a laxative effect via acetylcholine receptors in the mouse constipation model.

  6. Preparation and characterization of muscarinic-acetylcholine-receptor-enriched membranes from pig atria.

    PubMed Central

    Peterson, G L; Schimerlik, M I

    1982-01-01

    A procedure was developed for the large scale preparation of membranes from pig atria which are enriched 10-13 fold in the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor. The procedure involved differential centrifugation and sucrose-gradient centrifugation in solutions containing 150 mM-NaClO4 and 5 mM-EDTA to minimize membrane aggregation. The final membrane preparation bound about 1.1 pmol of L-quinuclidinyl benzilate/mg of protein. Comparable results were obtained with either fresh or frozen tissue. About the same yield (120 pmol of L-quinuclidinyl benzilate sites/100 g of tissue) and specific activity of membranes were obtained from different regions of the atria. The final preparation was stable at -80 degrees C in buffered sucrose solutions. The membranes appeared mostly as sheets or fragments and partly as closed vesicles in the electron microscope and were heterogeneous in isopycnic Percoll gradients. Marker enzyme studies showed that the receptor was enriched in parallel with the plasma membrane markers guanylate cyclase (particulate form) and (Na+ + K+)-activated ATPase. Some contamination by mitochondrial outer and endoplasmic reticulum membranes was evident from the distribution of monoamine oxidase and glucose-6-phosphatase activity, but the preparation was largely free of sarcoplasmic reticulum, mitochondrial inner, and lysosomal membranes. PMID:7092826

  7. Modelling and simulation of ion channels: applications to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Sansom, M S; Adcock, C; Smith, G R

    1998-01-01

    Molecular dynamics simulations with experimentally derived restraints have been used to develop atomic models of M2 helix bundles forming the pore-lining domains of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and related ligand-gated ion channels. M2 helix bundles have been used in microscopic simulations of the dynamics and energetics of water and ions within an ion channel. Translational and rotational motion of water are restricted within the pore, and water dipoles are aligned relative to the pore axis by the surrounding helix dipoles. Potential energy profiles for translation of a Na+ ion along the pore suggest that the protein and water components of the interaction energy exert an opposing effect on the ion, resulting in a relatively flat profile which favors cation permeation. Empirical conductance calculations based on a pore radius profile suggest that the M2 helix model is consistent with a single channel conductance of ca. 50 pS. Continuum electrostatics calculations indicate that a ring of glutamate residues at the cytoplasmic mouth of the alpha 7 nicotinic receptor M2 helix bundle may not be fully ionized. A simplified model of the remainder of the channel protein when added to the M2 helix bundle plays a significant role in enhancing the ion selectivity of the channel.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1995-03-20

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1994-09-01

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

  13. Conformational analysis of a toxic peptide from Trimeresurus wagleri which blocks the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Sellin, L C; Mattila, K; Annila, A; Schmidt, J J; McArdle, J J; Hyvönen, M; Rantala, T T; Kivistö, T

    1996-01-01

    The 22-residue toxic peptide (WTX1) from the venom of the Southeast Asian snake Trimeresurus wagleri has multiple sites of action, but its lethal effect has been attributed to blocking the postsynaptic acetylcholine receptor at the neuromuscular junction. The 3-dimensional structure of WTX1 was studied using 2-dimensional nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, circular dichroism, and computer simulations. In aqueous solution, WTX1 was shown to have extended and flexible "tails" defined by a short, rigid disulfide-bonded loop. The flexible regions can undergo structural rearrangement when moved from an aqueous to a less polar environment and may contribute to its effectiveness at different receptor sites. By substituting Gly or Phe for His at position 10, significant effects on the disulfide bond formation and, thereby, the activity of the peptide were observed. These results suggest that even subtle differences in single residues can have profound effects on the dynamics of folding, disulfide bond formation, and activity of this toxic peptide. Images FIGURE 10 FIGURE 12 PMID:8770182

  14. Modulation of acetylcholine release from rat striatal slices by the GABA/benzodiazepine receptor complex

    SciTech Connect

    Supavilai, P.; Karobath, M.

    1985-02-04

    GABA, THIP and muscimol enhance spontaneous and inhibit electrically induced release of tritium labelled compounds from rat striatal slices which have been pre-labelled with /sup 3/H-choline. Baclofen is inactive in this model. Muscimol can inhibit electrically induced release of tritiated material by approximately 75% with half maximal effects at 2 ..mu..M. The response to muscimol can be blocked by the GABA antagonists bicuculline methobromide, picrotoxin, anisatin, R 5135 and CPTBO (cyclopentylbicyclophosphate). Drugs which act on the benzodiazepine receptor (BR) require the presence of muscimol to be effective and they modulate the effects of muscimol in a bidirectional manner. Thus BR agonists enhance and inverse BR agonists attenuate the inhibitory effects of muscimol on electrically induced release. Ro15-1788, a BR antagonist, does not modulate the inhibitory effects of muscimol but antagonizes the actions of clonazepam, a BR agonist, and of DMCM, an inverse BR agonist. These results demonstrate that a GABA/benzodiazepine receptor complex can modulate acetylcholine release from rat striatal slices in vitro. 24 references, 3 figures, 5 table.

  15. 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.

  16. Physiological and biochemical studies of newly synthesized muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in embryonic chicken heart

    SciTech Connect

    Hunter, D.D.

    1986-01-01

    Exposure of either chicken embryos in ovo or cultured embryonic chicken cardiac cells in vitro to the muscarinic agonist carbachol results in a 70-90% decrease in the number of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChR) expressed in cardiac cells. Block of agonist-receptor interactions in ovo with the antagonist atropine or removal of the agonist in vitro results in a gradual increase in mAChR number, reaching the control level in 14 hr. Measurements of physiological sensitivity of atria or cultured cells show that, even after the complete recovery of receptor number, the sensitivity to agonist is reduced. The sensitivity of the mAChR-mediated inhibition of adenylate cyclase is also decreased at this time. Newly synthesized mAChR which appear following affinity alkylation in cultured cells are also poorly coupled to the stimulation of /sup 86/Rb/sup +/ efflux, indicating that decreased physiological sensitivity is not due to an unknown effect of long-term agonist exposure on general cellular function, but rather reflects an intrinsic property of newly synthesized mAChR. This increase in sensitivity is also not blocked by cycloheximide. The increase in sensitivity of the mAChR-mediated responses is due neither to a lack of expression of newly synthesized mAChR on the surface nor to reduced agonist affinity of the mAChR. The diminished sensitivity and subsequent maturation observed in cells containing newly synthesized receptors is due either to a small change in mAChR, or to a change in an as-yet-undefined component of the mAChR transduction system; this alteration represents a novel locus for modulation of cholinergic signals in the heart.

  17. 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

  18. Acetylcholine stimulates cortical precursor cell proliferation in vitro via muscarinic receptor activation and MAP kinase phosphorylation.

    PubMed

    Ma, W; Maric, D; Li, B S; Hu, Q; Andreadis, J D; Grant, G M; Liu, Q Y; Shaffer, K M; Chang, Y H; Zhang, L; Pancrazio, J J; Pant, H C; Stenger, D A; Barker, J L

    2000-04-01

    Increasing evidence has shown that some neurotransmitters act as growth-regulatory signals during brain development. Here we report a role for the classical neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) to stimulate proliferation of neural stem cells and stem cell-derived progenitor cells during neural cell lineage progression in vitro. Neuroepithelial cells in the ventricular zone of the embryonic rat cortex were found to express the m2 subtype of the muscarinic receptor. Neural precursor cells dissociated from the embryonic rat cortical neuroepithelium were expanded in culture with basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF). reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) revealed the presence of m2, m3 and m4 muscarinic receptor subtype transcripts, while immunocytochemistry demonstrated m2 protein. ACh and carbachol induced an increase in cytosolic Ca2+ and membrane currents in proliferating (BrdU+) cells, both of which were abolished by atropine. Exposure of bFGF-deprived precursor cells to muscarinic agonists not only increased both cell number and DNA synthesis, but also enhanced differentiation of neurons. These effects were blocked by atropine, indicating the involvement of muscarinic ACh receptors. The growth-stimulating effects were also antagonized by a panel of inhibitors of second messengers, including 1,2-bis-(O-aminophenoxy)-ethane-N,N,N', N'-tetraacetic acid (BAPTA-AM) to chelate cytosolic Ca2+, EGTA to complex extracellular Ca2+, pertussis toxin, which uncouples certain G-proteins, the protein kinase C inhibitor H7 and the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) inhibitor PD98059. Muscarinic agonists activated MAPK, which was significantly inhibited by atropine and the same panel of inhibitors. Thus, muscarinic receptors expressed by neural precursors transduce a growth-regulatory signal during neurogenesis via pathways involving pertussis toxin-sensitive G-proteins, Ca2+ signalling, protein kinase C activation, MAPK phosphorylation and DNA synthesis.

  19. Effects of cannabidiol on the function of α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Mahgoub, Mohamed; Keun-Hang, Susan Yang; Sydorenko, Vadym; Ashoor, Abrar; Kabbani, Nadine; Al Kury, Lina; Sadek, Bassem; Howarth, Christopher F; Isaev, Dmytro; Galadari, Sehamuddin; Oz, Murat

    2013-11-15

    The effects of cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive ingredient of cannabis plant, on the function of the cloned α7 subunit of the human nicotinic acetylcholine (α7 nACh) receptor expressed in Xenopus oocytes were tested using the two-electrode voltage-clamp technique. CBD reversibly inhibited ACh (100 μM)-induced currents with an IC50 value of 11.3 µM. Other phytocannabinoids such as cannabinol and Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol did not affect ACh-induced currents. CBD inhibition was not altered by pertussis toxin treatment. In addition, CBD did not change GTP-γ-S binding to the membranes of oocytes injected with α7 nACh receptor cRNA. The effect of CBD was not dependent on the membrane potential. CBD (10 µM) did not affect the activity of endogenous Ca(2+)-dependent Cl(-) channels, since the extent of inhibition by CBD was unaltered by intracellular injection of the Ca(2+) chelator BAPTA and perfusion with Ca(2+)-free bathing solution containing 2mM Ba(2+). Inhibition by CBD was not reversed by increasing ACh concentrations. Furthermore, specific binding of [(125)I] α-bungarotoxin was not inhibited by CBD (10 µM) in oocytes membranes. Using whole cell patch clamp technique in CA1 stratum radiatum interneurons of rat hippocampal slices, currents induced by choline, a selective-agonist of α7-receptor induced currents were also recoded. Bath application of CBD (10 µM) for 10 min caused a significant inhibition of choline induced currents. Finally, in hippocampal slices, [(3)H] norepinephrine release evoked by nicotine (30 µM) was also inhibited by 10 µM CBD. Our results indicate that CBD inhibits the function of the α7-nACh receptor.

  20. High Throughput Random Mutagenesis and Single Molecule Real Time Sequencing of the Muscle Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Groot-Kormelink, Paul J.; Ferrand, Sandrine; Kelley, Nicholas; Bill, Anke; Freuler, Felix; Imbert, Pierre-Eloi; Marelli, Anthony; Gerwin, Nicole; Sivilotti, Lucia G.; Miraglia, Loren; Orth, Anthony P.; Oakeley, Edward J.; Schopfer, Ulrich; Siehler, Sandra

    2016-01-01

    High throughput random mutagenesis is a powerful tool to identify which residues are important for the function of a protein, and gain insight into its structure-function relation. The human muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor was used to test whether this technique previously used for monomeric receptors can be applied to a pentameric ligand-gated ion channel. A mutant library for the α1 subunit of the channel was generated by error-prone PCR, and full length sequences of all 2816 mutants were retrieved using single molecule real time sequencing. Each α1 mutant was co-transfected with wildtype β1, δ, and ε subunits, and the channel function characterized by an ion flux assay. To test whether the strategy could map the structure-function relation of this receptor, we attempted to identify mutations that conferred resistance to competitive antagonists. Mutant hits were defined as receptors that responded to the nicotinic agonist epibatidine, but were not inhibited by either α-bungarotoxin or tubocurarine. Eight α1 subunit mutant hits were identified, six of which contained mutations at position Y233 or V275 in the transmembrane domain. Three single point mutations (Y233N, Y233H, and V275M) were studied further, and found to enhance the potencies of five channel agonists tested. This suggests that the mutations made the channel resistant to the antagonists, not by impairing antagonist binding, but rather by producing a gain-of-function phenotype, e.g. increased agonist sensitivity. Our data show that random high throughput mutagenesis is applicable to multimeric proteins to discover novel functional mutants, and outlines the benefits of using single molecule real time sequencing with regards to quality control of the mutant library as well as downstream mutant data interpretation. PMID:27649498

  1. Antagonism of Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors Alters Synaptic ERK Phosphorylation in the Rat Forebrain.

    PubMed

    Mao, Li-Min; Wang, Henry H; Wang, John Q

    2016-12-28

    Acetylcholine (ACh) is a key transmitter in the mesocorticolimbic circuit. By interacting with muscarinic ACh receptors (mAChR) enriched in the circuit, ACh actively regulates various neuronal and synaptic activities. The extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) is one of members of the mitogen-activated protein kinase family and is subject to the regulation by dopamine receptors, although the regulation of ERKs by limbic mAChRs is poorly understood. In this study, we investigated the role of mAChRs in the regulation of ERK phosphorylation (activation) in the mesocorticolimbic system of adult rat brains in vivo. We targeted a sub-pool of ERKs at synaptic sites. We found that a systemic injection of the mAChR antagonist scopolamine increased phosphorylation of synaptic ERKs in the striatum (caudate putamen and nucleus accumbens) and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Increases in ERK phosphorylation in both forebrain regions were rapid and transient. Notably, pretreatment with a dopamine D1 receptor (D1R) antagonist SCH23390 blocked the scopolamine-stimulated ERK phosphorylation in these brain regions, while a dopamine D2 receptor antagonist eticlopride did not. Scopolamine and SCH23390 did not change the amount of total ERK proteins. These results demonstrate that mAChRs inhibit synaptic ERK phosphorylation in striatal and mPFC neurons under normal conditions. Blockade of this inhibitory mAChR tone leads to the upregulation of ERK phosphorylation likely through a mechanism involving the level of D1R activity.

  2. In vitro functional interactions of acetylcholine esterase inhibitors and muscarinic receptor antagonists in the urinary bladder of the rat.

    PubMed

    Killi, Uday K; Wsol, Vladimir; Soukup, Ondrej; Kuca, Kamil; Winder, Michael; Tobin, Gunnar

    2014-02-01

    Obidoxime, a weak acetylcholine-esterase (AChE) inhibitor, exerts muscarinic receptor antagonism with a significant muscarinic M2 receptor selective profile. The current examinations aimed to determine the functional significance of muscarinic M2 receptors in the state of AChE inhibition, elucidating muscarinic M2 and M3 receptor interaction. In the in vitro examinations, methacholine evoked concentration-dependent bladder contractile and atrial frequency inhibitory responses. Although atropine abolished both, methoctramine (1 μmol/L) only affected the cholinergic response in the atrial preparations. However, in the presence of methoctramine, physostigmine, an AChE inhibitor, increased the basal tension of the bladder strip preparations (+68%), as well as the contractile responses to low concentrations of methacholine (< 5 μmol/L; +90-290%). In contrast to physostigmine, obidoxime alone raised the basal tension (+58%) and the responses to low concentrations of methacholine (< 5 μmol/L; +80-450%). Physostigmine concentration-dependently increased methacholine-evoked responses, similarly to obidoxime at low concentrations. However, at large concentrations (> 5 μmol/L), obidoxime, because of its unselective muscarinic receptor antagonism, inhibited the methacholine bladder responses. In conclusion, the current results show that muscarinic M2 receptors inhibit muscarinic M3 receptor-evoked contractile responses to low concentrations of acetylcholine in the synaptic cleft. The muscarinic M2 and M3 receptor crosstalk could be a counteracting mechanism in the treatment of AChE inhibition when using reactivators, such as obidoxime.

  3. Mutations in the embryonal subunit of the acetylcholine receptor (CHRNG) cause lethal and Escobar variants of multiple pterygium syndrome.

    PubMed

    Morgan, Neil V; Brueton, Louise A; Cox, Phillip; Greally, Marie T; Tolmie, John; Pasha, Shanaz; Aligianis, Irene A; van Bokhoven, Hans; Marton, Tamas; Al-Gazali, Lihadh; Morton, Jenny E V; Oley, Christine; Johnson, Colin A; Trembath, Richard C; Brunner, Han G; Maher, Eamonn R

    2006-08-01

    Multiple pterygium syndromes (MPSs) comprise a group of multiple-congenital-anomaly disorders characterized by webbing (pterygia) of the neck, elbows, and/or knees and joint contractures (arthrogryposis). In addition, a variety of developmental defects (e.g., vertebral anomalies) may occur. MPSs are phenotypically and genetically heterogeneous but are traditionally divided into prenatally lethal and nonlethal (Escobar) types. To elucidate the pathogenesis of MPS, we undertook a genomewide linkage scan of a large consanguineous family and mapped a locus to 2q36-37. We then identified germline-inactivating mutations in the embryonal acetylcholine receptor gamma subunit (CHRNG) in families with both lethal and nonlethal MPSs. These findings extend the role of acetylcholine receptor dysfunction in human disease and provide new insights into the pathogenesis and management of fetal akinesia syndromes.

  4. The molecular cloning and characterisation of cDNA coding for the alpha subunit of the acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Sumikawa, K; Houghton, M; Smith, J C; Bell, L; Richards, B M; Barnard, E A

    1982-01-01

    A rare cDNA coding for most of the alpha subunit of the Torpedo nicotinic acetylcholine receptor has been cloned into bacteria. The use of a mismatched oligonucleotide primer of reverse transcriptase facilitated the design of an efficient, specific probe for recombinant bacteria. DNA sequence analysis has enabled the elucidation of a large part of the polypeptide primary sequence which is discussed in relation to its acetylcholine binding activity and the location of receptor within the plasma membrane. When used as a radioactive probe, the cloned cDNA binds specifically to a single Torpedo mRNA species of about 2350 nucleotides in length but fails to show significant cross-hybridisation with alpha subunit mRNA extracted from cat muscle. Images PMID:6183641

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors regulating cell cycle progression are expressed in human gingival keratinocytes.

    PubMed

    Arredondo, J; Hall, L L; Ndoye, A; Chernyavsky, A I; Jolkovsky, D L; Grando, S A

    2003-02-01

    We have previously reported the presence in human gingival keratinocytes (GKC) of choline acetyltransferase, the acetylcholine (ACh) synthesizing enzyme, acetylcholinesterase, the ACh degrading enzyme, and alpha 3, alpha 5, alpha 7, beta 2 as well as alpha 9 nicotinic ACh receptor subunits. To expand the knowledge about the role of ACh in oral biology, we investigated the presence of the muscarinic ACh receptor (mAChR) subtypes in GKC. RT-PCR demonstrated the presence of m2, m3, m4, and m5 mRNA transcripts. Synthesis of the respective proteins was verified by immunoblotting with the subtype-specific antibodies that revealed receptor bands at the expected molecular weights. The antibodies mapped mAChR subtypes in the epithelium of human attached gingiva and also visualized them on the cell membrane of cultured GKC. The whole cell radioligand binding assay revealed that GKC have specific binding sites for the muscarinic ligand [3H]quinuclidinyl benzilate, Bmax = 222.9 fmol/106 cells with a Kd of 62.95 pM. The downstream coupling of the mAChRs to regulation of cell cycle progression in GKC was studied using quantitative RT-PCR and immunoblotting assays. Incubation of GKC for 24 h with 10 micro m muscarine increased relative amounts of Ki-67, PCNA and p53 mRNAs and PCNA, cyclin D1, p21 and p53 proteins. These effects were abolished in the presence of 50 micro m atropine. The finding in GKC of mAChRs coupled to regulation of the cell cycle progression demonstrate further the structure/function of the non-neuronal cholinergic system operating in human oral epithelium. The results obtained in this study help clarify the role for keratinocyte ACh axis in the physiologic control of oral gingival homeostasis.

  11. Altered coupling of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in pancreatic acinar carcinoma of rat

    SciTech Connect

    Chien, J.L.; Warren, J.R.

    1986-03-05

    The structure and function of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChR) in acinar carcinoma cells have been compared to mAChR in normal pancreatic acinar cells. Similar 80 kD proteins identified by SDS-PAGE of tumor and normal mAChR affinity-labeled with the muscarinic antagonist /sup 3/H-propylbenzilyl-choline mustards, and identical binding of the antagonist N-methylscopolamine to tumor and normal cells (K/sub D/approx.4x10/sup -10/ M), indicate conservation of mAChR proteins in carcinoma cells. Carcinoma mAChR display homogeneous binding of the agonists carbamylcholine (CCh), K/sub D/approx.3x10/sup -5/ M, and oxotremorine (Oxo), K/sub D/approx.x10/sup -6/ M, whereas normal cells display heterogeneous binding, with a minor component of high affinity interactions for CCh, K/sub D/approx.3x10/sup -6/ M, and Oxo, K/sub D/approx.2x/sup -17/ M, and a major component of low affinity interactions for CCh, K/sub D/approx.1x10/sup -4/ M, and Oxo, K/sub D/approx.2x10/sup -5/ M. Both carcinoma and normal cells exhibit concentration-dependent CCh-stimulated increase in cytosolic free Ca/sup 2 +/, as measured by intracellular Quin 2 fluorescence and /sup 45/Ca/sup 2 +/ efflux. However, carcinoma cells demonstrate 50% maximal stimulation of intracellular Ca/sup 2 +/ release at a CCh concentration (EC/sub 50/approx.6x10/sup -7/ M) one log below that observed for normal cells. The authors propose an altered coupling of mAChR to intracellular Ca/sup 2 +/ homeostasis in carcinoma cells, which is manifest as a single activated receptor state for agonist binding, and increased sensitivity to muscarinic receptor stimulation of Ca/sup 2 +/ release.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Thymus cells in myasthenia gravis selectively enhance production of anti-acetylcholine-receptor antibody by autologous blood lymphocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Newsom-Davis, J.; Willcox, N.; Calder, L.

    1981-11-26

    We investigated the role of the thymus in 16 patients with myasthenia gravis without thymoma by studying the production of anti-acetylcholine-receptor antibody by thymic and blood lymphocytes cultured alone or together. In 10 responders (with the highest receptor-antibody titers in their plasma), cultured thymic cells spontaneously produced measurable receptor antibody. Receptor-antibody production by autologous blood lymphocytes was enhanced by the addition of responder's thymic cells, irradiated to abrogate antibody production and suppression (P<0.01). This enhancement was greater and more consistent than that by pokeweed mitogen; it depended on viable thymic cells, appeared to be selective for receptor antibody, and correlated with the ratio of thymic helper (OKT4-positive or OKT4+) to suppressor (OKT8+) T cells (P<0.01). These results suggest that myasthenic thymus contains cell-bound acetylcholine-receptor-like material or specific T cells (or both) that can aid receptor-antibody production. This may be relevant to the benefits of thymectomy in myasthenia and to the breakdown in self-tolerance in this and other autoimmune diseases.

  16. Synthetic peptides of neurotoxins and rabies virus glycoprotein behave as antagonists in a functional assay for the acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Donnelly-Roberts, D L; Lentz, T L

    1989-01-01

    Peptides of portions of loop 2 (the "toxic" loop) of snake venom curare-mimetic neurotoxins (alpha-bungarotoxin and king cobra toxin b) and of a structurally similar region of the rabies virus glycoprotein were synthesized. The effect of the peptides on carbachol-induced 22Na+ flux into BC3H-1 cells, which contain nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on their surfaces, was measured. Both the neurotoxin and glycoprotein peptides inhibited ion transport with IC50 values of 10(-4) M to 7 x 10(-7) M. The most effective peptides correspond to neurotoxin loop 2 and inhibited 22Na+ flux in the micromolar range comparable to the competitive antagonist d-tubocurarine. These findings show that neurotoxin loop 2 and the corresponding rabies virus glycoprotein segment interact with the agonist binding site of teh acetylcholine receptor and that short synthetic peptides representing portions of larger molecules by themselves can exert a biological effect on a large macromolecular complex like the acetylcholine receptor.

  17. Activity regulates the levels of acetylcholine receptor alpha-subunit mRNA in cultured chicken myotubes.

    PubMed Central

    Klarsfeld, A; Changeux, J P

    1985-01-01

    In vitro blocking the spontaneous activity of primary cultures of chicken embryo myotubes with tetrodotoxin increases approximately equal to 2-fold their content in surface acetylcholine receptor. To investigate this effect at the level of gene expression, chicken genomic DNA sequences coding for the acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit were isolated and characterized. They were shown to belong to a single-copy, polymorphic gene with at least two alleles in the chicken strain utilized. Probes derived from these genomic clones were used to quantitate levels of alpha-subunit mRNA. In culture, a 2-day exposure to tetrodotoxin increased these mRNA levels up to 13-fold, a value similar to that observed after denervation of chick leg muscle (approximately equal to 17-fold). Actin mRNA levels varied little in any of these experiments. These results support the notion that membrane electrical activity affects acetylcholine receptor expression by regulating the accumulation of the corresponding mRNAs. Images PMID:2989833

  18. Separate fractions of mRNA from Torpedo electric organ induce chloride channels and acetylcholine receptors in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Sumikawa, K; Parker, I; Amano, T; Miledi, R

    1984-01-01

    Poly(A)+ mRNA extracted from the electric organ of Torpedo was fractionated by sucrose density gradient centrifugation. After injection into Xenopus oocytes one mRNA fraction induced the appearance of chloride channels in the oocyte membrane. Many of these channels were normally open, and the ensuing chloride current kept the resting potential of injected oocytes close to the chloride equilibrium potential. When the membrane was hyperpolarized, the chloride current was reduced. A separate fraction of mRNA induced the incorporation of acetylcholine receptors into the oocyte membrane. When translated in a cell-free system this fraction directed the synthesis of the alpha, beta, gamma, and delta subunits of the acetylcholine receptor. In contrast, the mRNA fraction that induced the chloride channels caused the synthesis of the delta subunit, a very small amount of alpha, and no detectable beta or gamma subunits. This suggests that the size of the mRNA coding for the chloride channel is similar to the preponderant species of mRNA coding for the delta subunit of the acetylcholine receptor. Images Fig. 1. PMID:6094179

  19. Catestatin attenuates endoplasmic reticulum induced cell apoptosis by activation type 2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor in cardiac ischemia/reperfusion

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Feng; Zheng, Yang; Cai, Junyan; Fan, Jinghui; Wang, Jing; Yang, Jichun; Cui, Qinghua; Xu, Guoheng; Tang, Chaoshu; Geng, Bin

    2015-01-01

    Catestatin (CST) is a catecholamine secretion inhibiting peptide as non-competitive inhibitor of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. CST play a protective role in cardiac ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) but the molecular mechanism remains unclear. Cardiomyocytes endogenously produced CST and its expression was reduced after I/R. CST pretreatment decreased apoptosis especially endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress response during I/R. The protection of CST was confirmed in H9c2 cardiomyoblasts under Anoxia/reoxygenation (A/R). In contrast, siRNA-mediated knockdown of CST exaggerated ER stress induced apoptosis. The protective effects of CST were blocked by extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1/2 (ERK1/2) inhibitor PD90895 and phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3 K) inhibitor wortmannin. CST also increased ERK1/2 and protein kinase B (Akt) phosphorylation and which was blocked by atropine and selective type 2 muscarinic acetylcholine (M2) receptor, but not type 1 muscarinic acetylcholine (M1) receptor antagonist. Receptor binding assay revealed that CST competitively bound to the M2 receptor with a 50% inhibitory concentration of 25.7 nM. Accordingly, CST inhibited cellular cAMP stimulated by isoproterenol or forskolin, and which was blocked by selective M2 receptor antagonist. Our findings revealed that CST binds to M2 receptor, then activates ERK1/2 and PI3 K/Akt pathway to inhibit ER stress-induced cell apoptosis resulting in attenuation cardiac I/R injury. PMID:26567709

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-04-01

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

  1. Binding of /sup 3/H-acetylcholine to cholinergic receptors in bovine cerebral arteries

    SciTech Connect

    Shimohama, S.; Tsukahara, T.; Taniguchi, T.; Fujiwara, M.

    1985-11-18

    Cholinergic receptor sites in bovine cerebral arteries were analyzed using radioligand binding techniques with the cholinergic agonist, /sup 3/H-acetylcholine (ACh), as the ligand. Specific binding of /sup 3/H-ACh to membrane preparations of bovine cerebral arteries was saturable, of two binding sites, with dissociation constant (K/sub D/) values of 0.32 and 23.7 nM, and maximum binding capacity (Bmax) values of 67 and 252 fmol/mg protein, respectively. Specific binding of /sup 3/H-ACh was displaced effectively by muscarinic cholinergic agents and less effectively by nicotinic cholinergic agents. IC/sub 50/ values of cholinergic drugs for /sup 3/H-ACh binding were as follows: atropine, 38.5 nM; ACh, 59.8 nM; oxotremorine, 293 nM; scopolamine 474 nM; carbamylcholine, 990 nM. IC/sub 50/ values of nicotinic cholinergic agents such as nicotine, cytisine and ..cap alpha..-bungarotoxin exceeded 50 ..mu..M. Choline acetyltransferase activity was 1.09 nmol/mg protein/hour in the cerebral arteries. These findings suggest that the cholinergic nerves innervate the bovine cerebral arteries and that there are at least two classes of ACh binding sites of different affinities on muscarinic reporters in these arteries. 18 references, 2 figures, 2 tables.

  2. 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.

  3. Cruzipain induces autoantibodies against cardiac muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Functional and pathological implications.

    PubMed

    Sterin-Borda, Leonor; Giordanengo, Laura; Joensen, Lilian; Gea, Susana

    2003-09-01

    The goal of this study was to investigate whether cruzipain, a Trypanosoma cruzi immunodominant antigen, was able to induce antibodies reactive to the cardiac M(2) muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (M(2) mAChR). Immunization with cruzipain that was devoid of enzyme activity triggered IgG antibodies against cardiac M(2) mAChR. By radioligand competition assay we proved that the anti-cruzipain IgG fraction, purified from serum, inhibited binding of the specific M(2) mAChR radioligand [(3)H]quinuclidinyl benzilate. We also demonstrated that anti-cruzipain IgG reacted against the second extracellular loop of the M(2) mAChR. The corresponding affinity-purified serum anti-M(2)e2 IgG (reacting against a synthetic peptide corresponding to this loop in humans) displayed agonist-like activity associated with specific M(2) mAChR activation - increase of cGMP, inositol phosphate accumulation and nitric oxide synthase activity - triggering a decrease in myocardial contractility. Moreover, the same IgG fraction decreased heart frequency, related to inhibition of adenylate cyclase activity. These results imply that cruzipain plays a role in the production of antibodies against M(2) mAChR, which have been related to the pathogenesis of dysautonomic syndrome described in Chagas' disease.

  4. 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.

  5. Role of acetylcholine and muscarinic receptors in serotonin-induced bronchoconstriction in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Kummer, Wolfgang; Wiegand, Silke; Akinci, Sibel; Schinkel, Alfred H; Wess, Jürgen; Koepsell, Hermann; Haberberger, Rainer Viktor; Lips, Katrin Susanne

    2006-01-01

    For the murine trachea, it has been reported that constriction evoked by serotonin (5-HT) is largely dependent on acetylcholine (ACh) released from the epithelium, owing to the sensitivity of the 5-HT response to epithelium removal, sensitivity to atropine, and insensitivity to tetrodotoxin (Moffatt et al., 2003). Consistent with this assumption, the respiratory epithelium contains ACh, its synthesizing enzyme, and the high-affinity choline transporter CHT1 (Reinheimer et al., 1996; Pfeil et al., 2003; Proskocil et al., 2004). Recently, we demonstrated that ACh can be released from non-neuronal cells by corticosteroid-sensitive polyspecific organic cation transporters (OCTs), which are also expressed by airway epithelial cells (Lips et al., 2005). Hence, we proposed that 5-HT evokes release of ACh from epithelial cells via OCTs and that this epithelial-derived ACh induces bronchoconstriction. We tested this hypothesis in a well-established model of videomorphometric analysis of bronchial diameter in precision-cut murine lung slices utilizing epithelium removal to assess the role of the epithelium, OCT mouse knockout (KO) strains to assess the role of OCT isoforms, and muscarinic receptor M2/M3 double-KO mice to assess the cholinergic component of 5-HT induced bronchoconstriction, as bronchi of this strain are entirely unresponsive to cholinergic stimulation(Struckmann et al., 2003).

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. A nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist affects honey bee sucrose responsiveness and decreases waggle dancing.

    PubMed

    Eiri, Daren M; Nieh, James C

    2012-06-15

    A nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist, imidacloprid, impairs memory formation in honey bees and has general effects on foraging. However, little is known about how this agonist affects two specific aspects of foraging: sucrose responsiveness (SR) and waggle dancing (which recruits nestmates). Using lab and field experiments, we tested the effect of sublethal doses of imidacloprid on (1) bee SR with the proboscis extension response assay, and (2) free-flying foragers visiting and dancing for a sucrose feeder. Bees that ingested imidacloprid (0.21 or 2.16 ng bee(-1)) had higher sucrose response thresholds 1 h after treatment. Foragers that ingested imidacloprid also produced significantly fewer waggle dance circuits (10.5- and 4.5-fold fewer for 50% and 30% sucrose solutions, respectively) 24 h after treatment as compared with controls. However, there was no significant effect of imidacloprid on the sucrose concentrations that foragers collected at a feeder 24 h after treatment. Thus, imidacloprid temporarily increased the minimum sucrose concentration that foragers would accept (short time scale, 1 h after treatment) and reduced waggle dancing (longer time scale, 24 h after treatment). The effect of time suggests different neurological effects of imidacloprid resulting from the parent compound and its metabolites. Waggle dancing can significantly increase colony food intake, and thus a sublethal dose (0.21 ng bee(-1), 24 p.p.b.) of this commonly used pesticide may impair colony fitness.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. Retinal waves in mice lacking the beta2 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Sun, Chao; Warland, David K; Ballesteros, Jose M; van der List, Deborah; Chalupa, Leo M

    2008-09-09

    The structural and functional properties of the visual system are disrupted in mutant animals lacking the beta2 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. In particular, eye-specific retinogeniculate projections do not develop normally in these mutants. It is widely thought that the developing retinas of beta2(-/-) mutants do not manifest correlated activity, leading to the notion that retinal waves play an instructional role in the formation of eye-specific retinogeniculate projections. By multielectrode array recordings, we show here that the beta2(-/-) mutants have robust retinal waves during the formation of eye-specific projections. Unlike in WT animals, however, the mutant retinal waves are propagated by gap junctions rather than cholinergic circuitry. These results indicate that lack of retinal waves cannot account for the abnormalities that have been documented in the retinogeniculate pathway of the beta2(-/-) mutants and suggest that other factors must contribute to the deficits in the visual system that have been noted in these animals.

  16. Local anaesthetics transiently block currents through single acetylcholine-receptor channels.

    PubMed Central

    Neher, E; Steinbach, J H

    1978-01-01

    1. Single channel currents through acetylcholine receptor channels (ACh channels) were recorded at chronically denervated frog muscle extrajunctional membranes in the absence and presence of the lidocaine derivatives QX-222 and QX-314. 2. The current wave forms due to the opening and closing of single ACh channels (activated by suberyldicholine) normally are square pulses. These single pulses appear to be chopped into bursts of much shorter pulses, when the drug QX-222 is present in addition to the agonist. 3. The mean duration of the bursts is comparable to or longer than the normal channel open time, and increases with increasing drug concentration. 4. The duration of the short pulses within a burst decreases with increasing drug concentration. 5. It is concluded that drug molecules reversibly block open end-plate channels and that the flickering within a burst represents this fast, repeatedly occurring reaction. 6. The voltage dependence of the reaction rates involved, suggested that the site of the blocking reaction is in the centre of the membrane, probably inside the ionic channel. PMID:306437

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-28

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

  18. Acetylcholine regulation of nicotinic receptor channels through a putative G protein in chick myotubes.

    PubMed Central

    Eusebi, F; Grassi, F; Molinaro, M; Zani, B M

    1987-01-01

    1. Single-channel currents induced by acetylcholine (ACh) were recorded from unstriated and non-innervated embryonic chick myotubes using the cell-attached patch-clamp technique. 2. ACh applied to the non-patched membrane decreased both channel opening probability and conductance. These ACh-induced effects occurred also when the non-patched membrane was exposed to nominally Ca2+-free extracellular medium, but were absent when it was treated with curare. 3. ACh-induced membrane current recorded under whole-cell patch-clamp conditions decreased in amplitude and time course when myotubes were intracellularly loaded with guanosine-5'-O-(3-thiotriphosphate) GTP gamma S), but not with guanosine-5'-O-(2-thiodiphosphate) (GDP beta S) or cyclic adenosine-5'-monophosphate (cyclic AMP). Internal perfusion of GTP gamma S affected the ACh-induced openings in a similar manner to the non-patch ACh application. 4. These results suggest that ACh, in addition to its direct effect, acts indirectly on the nicotinic receptor channels by delivering an intracellular messenger and through the activation of a putative G protein. PMID:2451747

  19. Multiple conductance classes of mouse nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Kullberg, R; Owens, J L; Camacho, P; Mandel, G; Brehm, P

    1990-01-01

    Acetylcholine receptor (AcChoR) subunit mRNAs transcribed from mouse BC3H-1 cDNAs were injected into Xenopus oocytes and the expressed AcChoR channels were examined by single channel recording. Injection of alpha-, beta-, gamma-, and delta-subunit mRNAs produced two predominant channel classes with conductances of approximately 50 and approximately 12 pS, while infrequent openings of approximately 25-pS channels were also observed. Injection of alpha-, beta-, and gamma-subunit mRNAs produced a single class of approximately 12-pS AcChoR channels, which resembled the smallest conductance channels present in alpha beta gamma omega-injected oocytes. Assembly of delta-less channels may thus explain the lowest conductance AcChoR channels in alpha beta gamma delta-injected oocytes and might also account for similar channels that have been observed in vertebrate skeletal muscle. Images PMID:2315303

  20. [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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  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. Expression of m1-type muscarinic acetylcholine receptors by parvalbumin-immunoreactive neurons in the primary visual cortex: a comparative study of rat, guinea pig, ferret, macaque, and human.

    PubMed

    Disney, Anita A; Reynolds, John H

    2014-04-01

    Cholinergic neuromodulation is a candidate mechanism for aspects of arousal and attention in mammals. We have reported previously that cholinergic modulation in the primary visual cortex (V1) of the macaque monkey is strongly targeted toward GABAergic interneurons, and in particular that the vast majority of parvalbumin-immunoreactive (PV) neurons in macaque V1 express the m1-type (pirenzepine-sensitive, Gq-coupled) muscarinic ACh receptor (m1AChR). In contrast, previous physiological data indicates that PV neurons in rats rarely express pirenzepine-sensitive muscarinic AChRs. To examine further this apparent species difference in the cholinergic effectors for the primary visual cortex, we have conducted a comparative study of the expression of m1AChRs by PV neurons in V1 of rats, guinea pigs, ferrets, macaques, and humans. We visualize PV- and mAChR-immunoreactive somata by dual-immunofluorescence confocal microscopy and find that the species differences are profound; the vast majority (>75%) of PV-ir neurons in macaques, humans, and guinea pigs express m1AChRs. In contrast, in rats only ∼25% of the PV population is immunoreactive for m1AChRs. Our data reveal that while they do so much less frequently than in primates, PV neurons in rats do express Gq-coupled muscarinic AChRs, which appear to have gone undetected in the previous in vitro studies. Data such as these are critical in determining the species that represent adequate models for the capacity of the cholinergic system to modulate inhibition in the primate cortex.

  6. Endocannabinoids Mediate Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor-Dependent Long-Term Depression in the Adult Medial Prefrontal Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Henry G. S.; Bernabeu, Axel; Lassalle, Olivier; Bouille, Clément; Beurrier, Corinne; Pelissier-Alicot, Anne-Laure; Manzoni, Olivier J.

    2015-01-01

    Cholinergic inputs into the prefrontal cortex (PFC) are associated with attention and cognition; however there is evidence that acetylcholine also has a role in PFC dependent learning and memory. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChR) in the PFC can induce synaptic plasticity, but the underlying mechanisms remain either opaque or unresolved. We have characterized a form of mAChR mediated long-term depression (LTD) at glutamatergic synapses of layer 5 principal neurons in the adult medial PFC. This mAChR LTD is induced with the mAChR agonist carbachol and inhibited by selective M1 mAChR antagonists. In contrast to other cortical regions, we find that this M1 mAChR mediated LTD is coupled to endogenous cannabinoid (eCB) signaling. Inhibition of the principal eCB CB1 receptor blocked carbachol induced LTD in both rats and mice. Furthermore, when challenged with a sub-threshold carbachol application, LTD was induced in slices pretreated with the monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) inhibitor JZL184, suggesting that the eCB 2-arachidonylglyerol (2-AG) mediates M1 mAChR LTD. Yet, when endogenous acetylcholine was released from local cholinergic afferents in the PFC using optogenetics, it failed to trigger eCB-LTD. However coupling patterned optical and electrical stimulation to generate local synaptic signaling allowed the reliable induction of LTD. The light—electrical pairing induced LTD was M1 mAChR and CB1 receptor mediated. This shows for the first time that connecting excitatory synaptic activity with coincident endogenously released acetylcholine controls synaptic gain via eCB signaling. Together these results shed new light on the mechanisms of synaptic plasticity in the adult PFC and expand on the actions of endogenous cholinergic signaling. PMID:26648844

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. Alteration of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in rabies viral-infected dog brains.

    PubMed

    Dumrongphol, H; Srikiatkhachorn, A; Hemachudha, T; Kotchabhakdi, N; Govitrapong, P

    1996-04-01

    Functions of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) were studied in rabid dog brains using [3H]quinuclidinyl benzilate (QNB) as a radioligand. Of various brain regions, hippocampus and brainstem were the areas mostly affected in terms of impaired specific binding to [3H]QNB, as compared to other regions, as well as to those of controls. Saturation studies of the hippocampus revealed significantly elevated dissociation equilibrium constant (K(d)) values in both furious (n = 5) (9.80 + or - 2.77 nM) and dumb (n = 6) (6.01 + or - 1.08 nM) types of rabies as compared to 11 controls (2.15 + or - 0.31 nM), whereas the maximum number of receptor sites (B (max)) values were comparable among all subgroups of normal (1.38 + or - 0.10 pmol/mg protein), dumb (1.43 + or - 0.17 pmol/mg protein) and furious (1.28 + or - 0.12 pmol/mg protein) rabies types. Hippocampal K(d) values were comparable between high (fluorescent antibody test-FAT and polymerase chain reaction-PCR positive; n = 4) (7.47 + or - 3.27 nM), and low (FAT-negative and PCR-positive; n = 4) virus amount (8.34 + or - 3.93 nM) but these were significantly higher than controls (n = 4) (1.58 + or - 0.17 nM). Our data suggest a functional derangement of mAChR at specific sites of hippocampus and brainstem which is not dependent on the amount of virus.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Therapeutic use of muscarinic acetylcholine receptor peptide to prevent mice chagasic cardiac dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Sterin-Borda, Leonor; Joensen, Lilian; Bayo-Hanza, Carolina; Esteva, Mónica; Borda, Enri

    2002-12-01

    Therapeutic use of a peptide corresponding to the aminoacid sequence of the second extracellular loop of human M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (M2 mAChR peptide) was studied. Expression and biological activity of M2 mAChR in association with circulating M2 mAChR-related antibodies in cardiac tissue from chagasic mice were evaluated. Mice infected or not with trypomastigotes Tulahuen strain either treated or not treated with M2 mAChR peptide were sacrificed at 8-9 weeks post-infection. Morphological, binding and contractility studies were performed on all animal groups. Hearts from infected mice showed a mAChR-related dysfunction, with a decrease in heart contractility, impaired response to exogenous mAChR agonist (carbachol) and a significant reduction of mAChR binding sites. Treating infected mice with M2 mAChR peptide reversed those effects. Moreover, autoantibodies from infected mice recognized the M2 mAChR peptide. In addition, serum from infected mice and the corresponding affinity purified IgG was capable of interacting with cardiac mAChR, reducing the number of binding sites and inhibiting the contractile response to exogenous agonist. In conclusion, (1) the development of alterations in mAChR related to cardiac dysfunction, may be associated with the presence of circulating antibodies against these receptors and (2) the chronic treatment with M2 mAChR peptide prevented infected mice heart dysfunction. The mechanism could be explained by the ability of the M2 mAChR peptide to inhibit the chronic interaction of autoantibodies specific to mAChR. The implication of M2 mAChR peptide treatment in the host's immune response is discussed.

  16. 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

  17. Olfactory discrimination varies in mice with different levels of α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression

    PubMed Central

    Hellier, Jennifer L.; Arevalo, Nicole L.; Blatner, Megan J.; Dang, An K.; Clevenger, Amy C.; Adams, Catherine E.; Restrepo, Diego

    2010-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that schizophrenics have decreased expression of α7-nicotinic acetylcholine (α7) receptors in the hippocampus and other brain regions, paranoid delusions, disorganized speech, deficits in auditory gating (i.e., inability to inhibit neuronal responses to repetitive auditory stimuli), and difficulties in odor discrimination and detection. Here we use mice with decreased α7 expression that also show a deficit in auditory gating to determine if these mice have similar deficits in olfaction. In the adult mouse olfactory bulb (OB), α7 expression localizes in the glomerular layer; however, the functional role of α7 is unknown. We show that inbred mouse strains (i.e., C3H and C57) with varying α7 expression (e.g., α7 wild-type [α7+/+], α7 heterozygous knock-out [α7+/−] and α7 homozygous knockout mice [α7−/−]) significantly differ in odor discrimination and detection of chemically related odorant pairs. Using [125I] α-bungarotoxin (α-BGT) autoradiography, α7 expression was measured in the OB. As previously demonstrated, α-BGT binding was localized to the glomerular layer. Significantly more expression of α7 was observed in C57 α7+/+ mice compared to C3H α7+/+ mice. Furthermore, C57 α7+/+ mice were able to detect a significantly lower concentration of an odor in a mixture compared to C3H α7+/+ mice. Both C57 and C3H α7+/+ mice discriminated between chemically related odorants sooner than α7+/− or α7−/− mice. These data suggest that α7-nicotinic-receptors contribute strongly to olfactory discrimination and detection in mice and may be one of the mechanisms producing olfactory dysfunction in schizophrenics. PMID:20713028

  18. Endogenous Inhibition of the Trigeminally Evoked Neurotransmission to Cardiac Vagal Neurons by Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Gorini, C.; Philbin, K.; Bateman, R.

    2010-01-01

    Stimulation of the nasal mucosa by airborne irritants or water evokes a pronounced bradycardia accompanied by peripheral vasoconstriction and apnea. The dive response, which includes the trigeminocardiac reflex, is among the most powerful autonomic responses. These responses slow the heart rate and reduce myocardial oxygen consumption. Although normally cardioprotective, exaggeration of this reflex can be detrimental and has been implicated in cardiorespiratory diseases, including sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). An essential component of the diving response and trigeminocardiac reflex is activation of the parasympathetic cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs) in the nucleus ambiguus that control heart rate. This study examined the involvement of cholinergic receptors in trigeminally evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents in CVNs in an in vitro preparation from rats. CVNs were identified using a retrograde tracer injected into the fat pads at the base of the heart. Application of the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor neostigmine significantly decreased the amplitude of glutamatergic neurotransmission to CVNs on stimulation of trigeminal fibers. Whereas nicotine did not have any effect on the glutamatergic responses, the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) agonist bethanechol significantly decreased the excitatory neurotransmission. Atropine, an mAChR antagonist, facilitated these responses indicating this trigeminally evoked brain stem pathway in vitro is endogenously inhibited by mAChRs. Tropicamide, an m4 mAChR antagonist, prevented the inhibitory action of the muscarinic agonist bethanechol. These results indicate that the glutamatergic synaptic neurotransmission in the trigeminally evoked pathway to CVNs is endogenously inhibited in vitro by m4 mAChRs. PMID:20719927

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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