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Sample records for acetylcholine receptors expressed

  1. 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'.

  2. Expression of somatostatin receptor genes and acetylcholine receptor development in rat skeletal muscle during postnatal development.

    PubMed

    Peng, M; Conforti, L; Millhorn, D E

    1998-05-01

    Our laboratory reported previously that somatostatin (SST) is transiently expressed in rat motoneurons during the first 14 days after birth. We investigated the possibility that the SST receptor (SSTR) is expressed in skeletal muscle. We found that two of the five subtypes of SSTR (SSTR3 and SSTR4) are expressed in skeletal muscle with a time course that correlates with the transient expression of SST in motoneurons. In addition, SSTR2A is expressed from birth to adulthood in skeletal muscle. Both SSTR2A and SSTR4 are also expressed in L6 cells, a skeletal muscle cell line. Somatostatin acting through its receptors has been shown to stimulate tyrosine phosphatase activity in a number of different tissues. We found that several proteins (50, 65, 90, 140, 180 and 200 kDa) exhibited a reduced degree of tyrosine phosphorylation following SST treatment. Inhibition of tyrosine phosphatase activity with sodium orthovanadate increased expression of the nicotinic acetyl-choline receptor (nAChR) epsilon subunit mRNA by three fold. Somatostatin reversed the elevated epsilon mRNA following orthovanadate treatment. These findings show that SSTR is expressed in skeletal muscle and that SST acting via the SSTR regulates tyrosine phosphorylation and expression of the epsilon subunit of the AChR in the rat skeletal muscle. PMID:9852305

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1987-11-01

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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Monkey Adrenal Chromaffin Cells Express α6β4* Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:24727685

  7. 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.

  8. Stable expression and pharmacological properties of the human alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Gopalakrishnan, M; Buisson, B; Touma, E; Giordano, T; Campbell, J E; Hu, I C; Donnelly-Roberts, D; Arneric, S P; Bertrand, D; Sullivan, J P

    1995-08-15

    The alpha 7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtype forms a Ca(2+)-permeable homooligomeric ion channel sensitive to alpha-bungarotoxin in Xenopus oocytes. In this study, we have stably and functionally expressed the human alpha 7 cDNA in a mammalian cell line, HEK-293 and examined its pharmacologic properties. [125I] alpha-Bungarotoxin bound to transfected cells with a Kd value of 0.7 nM and a Bmax value of 973 pmoL/mg protein. No specific binding was detected in untransfected cells. Specific binding could be displaced by unlabeled alpha-bungarotoxin (Ki = 0.5 nM) and an excellent correlation was observed between binding affinities of a series of nicotinic cholinergic ligands in transfected cells and those in the human neuroblastoma IMR-32 cell line. Additionally, cell surface expression of alpha 7 receptors was detected by fluorescein isothiocyanate-conjugated alpha-bungarotoxin in transfected cells. Whole cell currents sensitive to blockade by alpha-bungarotoxin, and with fast kinetics of activation and inactivation, were recorded from transfected cells upon rapid application of (-)-nicotine or acetylcholine with EC50 values of 49 microM and 155 microM respectively. We conclude that the human alpha 7 subunit when expressed alone can form functional ion channels and that the stably transfected HEK-293 cell line serves as a unique system for studying human alpha 7 nicotinic receptor function and regulation, and for examining ligand interactions.

  9. P2Y2 receptor activation regulates the expression of acetylcholinesterase and acetylcholine receptor genes at vertebrate neuromuscular junctions.

    PubMed

    Tung, Edmund K K; Choi, Roy C Y; Siow, Nina L; Jiang, Joy X S; Ling, Karen K Y; Simon, Joseph; Barnard, Eric A; Tsim, Karl W K

    2004-10-01

    At the vertebrate neuromuscular junction (nmj), ATP is known to be coreleased with acetylcholine from the synaptic vesicles. We have previously shown that the P2Y1 receptor is localized at the nmj. Here, we extend the findings to show that another nucleotide receptor, P2Y2, is also localized there and with P2Y1 jointly mediates trophic responses to ATP. The P2Y2 receptor mRNA in rat muscle increased during development and peaked in adulthood. The P2Y2 receptor protein was shown to become restricted to the nmjs during embryonic development, in chick and in rat. In both rat and chick myotubes, P2Y1 and P2Y2 are expressed, increasing with differentiation, but P2Y4 is absent. The P2Y2 agonist UTP stimulated there inositol trisphosphate production and phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases, in a dose-dependent manner. These UTP-induced responses were insensitive to the P2Y1-specific antagonist MRS 2179 (2'-deoxy-N6-methyl adenosine 3',5'-diphosphate diammonium salt). In differentiated myotubes, P2Y2 activation induced expression of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) protein (but not control alpha-tubulin). This was shown to arise from AChE promoter activation, mediated by activation of the transcription factor Elk-1. Two Elk-1-responsive elements, located in intron-1 of the AChE promoter, were found by mutation to act in this gene activation initiated at the P2Y2 receptor and also in that initiated at the P2Y1 receptor. Furthermore, the promoters of different acetylcholine receptor subunits were also stimulated by application of UTP to myotubes. These results indicate that ATP regulates postsynaptic gene expressions via a common pathway triggered by the activation of P2Y1 and P2Y2 receptors at the nmjs. PMID:15258260

  10. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression in human airway correlates with lung function.

    PubMed

    Lam, David Chi-Leung; Luo, Susan Yang; Fu, Kin-Hang; Lui, Macy Mei-Sze; Chan, Koon-Ho; Wistuba, Ignacio Ivans; Gao, Boning; Tsao, Sai-Wah; Ip, Mary Sau-Man; Minna, John Dorrance

    2016-02-01

    Nicotine and its derivatives, by binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) on bronchial epithelial cells, can regulate cellular signaling and inflammatory processes. Delineation of nAChR subtypes and their responses to nicotine stimulation in bronchial epithelium may provide information for therapeutic targeting in smoking-related inflammation in the airway. Expression of nAChR subunit genes in 60 bronchial epithelial biopsies and immunohistochemical staining for the subcellular locations of nAChR subunit expression were evaluated. Seven human bronchial epithelial cell lines (HBECs) were exposed to nicotine in vitro for their response in nAChR subunit gene expression to nicotine exposure and removal. The relative normalized amount of expression of nAChR α4, α5, and α7 and immunohistochemical staining intensity of nAChR α4, α5, and β3 expression showed significant correlation with lung function parameters. Nicotine stimulation in HBECs resulted in transient increase in the levels of nAChR α5 and α6 but more sustained increase in nAChR α7 expression. nAChR expression in bronchial epithelium was found to correlate with lung function. Nicotine exposure in HBECs resulted in both short and longer term responses in nAChR subunit gene expression. These results gave insight into the potential of targeting nAChRs for therapy in smoking-related inflammation in the airway. PMID:26608528

  11. Spatiotemporal calcium signaling in a Drosophila melanogaster cell line stably expressing a Drosophila muscarinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Cordova, D; Delpech, V Raymond; Sattelle, D B; Rauh, J J

    2003-11-01

    A muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR), DM1, expressed in the nervous system of Drosophila melanogaster, has been stably expressed in a Drosophila S2 cell line (S2-DM1) and used to investigate spatiotemporal calcium changes following agonist activation. Carbamylcholine (CCh) and oxotremorine are potent agonists, whereas application of the vertebrate M1 mAChR agonist, McN-A-343, results in a weak response. Activation of S2-DM1 receptors using CCh resulted in an increase in intracellular calcium ([Ca(2+)](i)) that was biphasic. Two distinct calcium sources were found to contribute to calcium signaling: (1) internal stores that are sensitive to both thapsigargin and 2-aminoethoxydiphenyl borate and (2) capacitative calcium entry. Spatiotemporal imaging of individual S2-DM1 cells showed that the CCh-induced [Ca(2+)](i) transient resulted from a homogeneous calcium increase throughout the cell, indicative of calcium release from internal stores. In contrast, ionomycin induced the formation of a "calcium ring" at the cell periphery, consistent with external calcium influx. PMID:12827518

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. Stable expression of transfected Torpedo acetylcholine receptor. cap alpha. subunits in mouse fibroblast L cells

    SciTech Connect

    Claudio, T.

    1987-08-01

    Torpedo californica electric organ cDNA libraries were constructed in lambdagt10 and lambdagt11. Four acetylcholine receptor (AcChoR) subunit cDNA clones were isolated and shown to contain the entire coding region for each of the subunits. When in vitro synthesized AcChoR mRNA was microinjected into Xenopus laevis oocytes, functional cell surface AcChoRs were expressed. A very simple and fast /sup 22/Na-uptake experiment was performed on batches of microinjected oocytes to identify oocytes that were expressing large quantities of functional cell surface AcChoRs for use in single-channel recordings. In addition to the transient expression system, DNA-mediated contransformation is described, which is a method for stably introducing AcChoR cDNAs into the chromosomes of tissue culture cells. Because the AcChoR is composed of four different subunits, it is necessary to integrate four cDNAs into the chromosomes of the same cell before stable expression of a completely functional receptor complex can be established. The authors show that 80% of the cells that integrated the selectable marker gene into their chromosomes also integrated all four AcChoR cDNAs. When Torpedo ..cap alpha..-subunit cDNA inserted into an appropriate expression vector was introduced into cells by transfection, ..cap alpha..-subunit protein was synthesized that migrated on NaDodSO/sub 4//polyacrylamide gels with the same molecular mass as native Torpedo ..cap alpha.. subunits and expressed antigenic determinants similar to those of native Torpedo ..cap alpha.. subunits.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-01

    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 V as 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 of

  17. Expression of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits from parasitic nematodes in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Sloan, Megan A; Reaves, Barbara J; Maclean, Mary J; Storey, Bob E; Wolstenholme, Adrian J

    2015-11-01

    The levamisole-sensitive nicotinic acetylcholine receptor present at nematode neuromuscular junctions is composed of multiple different subunits, with the exact composition varying between species. We tested the ability of two well-conserved nicotinic receptor subunits, UNC-38 and UNC-29, from Haemonchus contortus and Ascaris suum to rescue the levamisole-resistance and locomotion defects of Caenorhabditis elegans strains with null deletion mutations in the unc-38 and unc-29 genes. The parasite cDNAs were cloned downstream of the relevant C. elegans promoters and introduced into the mutant strains via biolistic transformation. The UNC-38 subunit of H. contortus was able to completely rescue both the locomotion defects and levamisole resistance of the null deletion mutant VC2937 (ok2896), but no C. elegans expressing the A. suum UNC-38 could be detected. The H. contortus UNC-29.1 subunit partially rescued the levamisole resistance of a C. elegans null mutation in unc-29 VC1944 (ok2450), but did cause increased motility in a thrashing assay. In contrast, only a single line of worms containing the A. suum UNC-29 subunit showed a partial rescue of levamisole resistance, with no effect on thrashing.

  18. The β3 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor: Modulation of gene expression and nicotine consumption.

    PubMed

    Kamens, Helen M; Miyamoto, Jill; Powers, Matthew S; Ro, Kasey; Soto, Marissa; Cox, Ryan; Stitzel, Jerry A; Ehringer, Marissa A

    2015-12-01

    Genetic factors explain approximately half of the variance in smoking behaviors, but the molecular mechanism by which genetic variation influences behavior is poorly understood. SNPs in the putative promoter region of CHRNB3, the gene that encodes the β3 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), have been repeatedly associated with nicotine behaviors. In this work we sought to identify putative function of three SNPs in the promoter region of CHRNB3 on in vitro gene expression. Additionally, we used β3 null mutant mice as a model of reduced gene expression to assess the effects on nicotine behaviors. The effect of rs13277254, rs6474413, and rs4950 on reporter gene expression was examined using a luciferase reporter assay. A major and minor parent haplotype served as the background on which alleles at the three SNPs were flipped onto different backgrounds (e.g. minor allele on major haplotype background). Constructs were tested in three human cell lines: BE(2)-C, SH-SY5Y and HEK293T. In all cell types the major haplotype led to greater reporter gene expression compared to the minor haplotype, and results indicate that this effect is driven by rs6474413. Moreover, mice lacking the β3 subunit showed reduced voluntary nicotine consumption compared that of wildtype animals. These data provide evidence that the protective genetic variant at rs6474413 identified in human genetic studies reduces gene expression and that decreased β3 gene expression in mice reduces nicotine intake. This work contributes to our understanding of the molecular mechanisms that contribute to the human genetic associations of tobacco behaviors.

  19. Rhesus monkey alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: comparisons to human alpha7 receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed

    Papke, Roger L; McCormack, Thomas J; Jack, Brian A; Wang, Daguang; Bugaj-Gaweda, Bozena; Schiff, Hillary C; Buhr, Joshua D; Waber, Amanda J; Stokes, Clare

    2005-11-01

    An alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor sequence was cloned from Rhesus monkey (Macaca mulatta). This clone differs from the mature human alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in only four amino acids, two of which are in the extracellular domain. The monkey alpha7 nicotinic receptor was characterized in regard to its functional responses to acetylcholine, choline, cytisine, and the experimental alpha7-selective agonists 4OH-GTS-21, TC-1698, and AR-R17779. For all of these agonists, the EC(50) for activation of monkey receptors was uniformly higher than for human receptors. In contrast, the potencies of mecamylamine and MLA for inhibiting monkey and human alpha7 were comparable. Acetylcholine and 4OH-GTS-21 were used to probe the significance of the single point differences in the extracellular domain. Mutants with the two different amino acids in the extracellular domain of the monkey receptor changed to the corresponding sequence of the human receptor had responses to these agonists that were not significantly different in EC(50) from wild-type human alpha7 nicotinic receptors. Monkey alpha7 nicotinic receptors have a serine at residue 171, while the human receptors have an asparagine at this site. Monkey S171N mutants were more like human alpha7 nicotinic receptors, while mutations at the other site (K186R) had relatively little effect. These experiments point toward the basic utility of the monkey receptor as a model for the human alpha7 nicotinic receptor, albeit with the caveat that these receptors will vary in their agonist concentration dependency. They also point to the potential importance of a newly identified sequence element for modeling the specific amino acids involved with receptor activation. PMID:16266703

  20. Mouse muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor gamma subunit: cDNA sequence and gene expression.

    PubMed Central

    Yu, L; LaPolla, R J; Davidson, N

    1986-01-01

    Clones coding for the mouse nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) gamma subunit precursor have been selected from a cDNA library derived from a mouse myogenic cell line and sequenced. The deduced protein sequence consists of a signal peptide of 22 amino acid residues and a mature gamma subunit of 497 amino acid residues. There is a high degree of sequence conservation between this mouse sequence and published human and calf AChR gamma subunits and, after allowing for functional amino acid substitutions, also to the more distantly related chicken and Torpedo AChR gamma subunits. The degree of sequence conservation is especially high in the four putative hydrophobic membrane spanning regions, supporting the assignment of these domains. RNA blot hybridization showed that the mRNA level of the gamma subunit increases by 30 fold or more upon differentiation of the two mouse myogenic cell lines, BC3H-1 and C2C12, suggesting that the primary controls for changes in gene expression during differentiation are at the level of transcription. One cDNA clone was found to correspond to a partially processed nuclear transcript containing two as yet unspliced intervening sequences. Images PMID:3010242

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-06

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  3. Acetylcholine Receptor: An Allosteric Protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Changeux, Jean-Pierre; Devillers-Thiery, Anne; Chemouilli, Phillippe

    1984-09-01

    The nicotine receptor for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine is an allosteric protein composed of four different subunits assembled in a transmembrane pentamer α 2β γ δ . The protein carries two acetylcholine sites at the level of the α subunits and contains the ion channel. The complete sequence of the four subunits is known. The membrane-bound protein undergoes conformational transitions that regulate the opening of the ion channel and are affected by various categories of pharmacologically active ligands.

  4. Neonicotinoid Binding, Toxicity and Expression of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Subunits in the Aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum

    PubMed Central

    Taillebois, Emiliane; Beloula, Abdelhamid; Quinchard, Sophie; Jaubert-Possamai, Stéphanie; Daguin, Antoine; Servent, Denis; Tagu, Denis

    2014-01-01

    Neonicotinoid insecticides act on nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and are particularly effective against sucking pests. They are widely used in crops protection to fight against aphids, which cause severe damage. In the present study we evaluated the susceptibility of the pea aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum to the commonly used neonicotinoid insecticides imidacloprid (IMI), thiamethoxam (TMX) and clothianidin (CLT). Binding studies on aphid membrane preparations revealed the existence of high and low-affinity binding sites for [3H]-IMI (Kd of 0.16±0.04 nM and 41.7±5.9 nM) and for the nicotinic antagonist [125I]-α-bungarotoxin (Kd of 0.008±0.002 nM and 1.135±0.213 nM). Competitive binding experiments demonstrated that TMX displayed a higher affinity than IMI for [125I]-α-bungarotoxin binding sites while CLT affinity was similar for both [125I]-α-bungarotoxin and [3H]-IMI binding sites. Interestingly, toxicological studies revealed that at 48 h, IMI (LC50 = 0.038 µg/ml) and TMX (LC50 = 0.034 µg/ml) were more toxic than CLT (LC50 = 0.118 µg/ml). The effect of TMX could be associated to its metabolite CLT as demonstrated by HPLC/MS analysis. In addition, we found that aphid larvae treated either with IMI, TMX or CLT showed a strong variation of nAChR subunit expression. Using semi-quantitative PCR experiments, we detected for all insecticides an increase of Apisumα10 and Apisumβ1 expressions levels, whereas Apisumβ2 expression decreased. Moreover, some other receptor subunits seemed to be differently regulated according to the insecticide used. Finally, we also demonstrated that nAChR subunit expression differed during pea aphid development. Altogether these results highlight species specificity that should be taken into account in pest management strategies. PMID:24801634

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  6. Ligand binding properties of muscarinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes (m1-m5) expressed in baculovirus-infected insect cells.

    PubMed

    Dong, G Z; Kameyama, K; Rinken, A; Haga, T

    1995-07-01

    Five subtypes of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (m1-m5) have been expressed in insect cells (Spodoptera frugiperda, Sf9) using the baculovirus system. Up to 6 nmol of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors were produced by 1 liter culture; 0.3 to 0.6 (human m1), 3 to 6 (human m2), 2 to 4 (rat m3), 1 to 2 (rat m4) and 0.5 to 1 (human m5) nmol. Pirenzepine, AF-DX116 and hexahidrosiladifenidol showed the highest affinity for the m1, m2 and m3 subtype, respectively, indicating that these receptors expressed in Sf9 cells retain the same substrate specificity as those in mammalian tissues or cultured cells. Among 32 kinds of muscarinic ligands examined in the present studies, prifinium was found to have the highest affinity for the m4 subtype, and pilocarpine, oxotremorine, McN-A343 and promethazine the highest affinity for the m5 subtype, although the differences in the affinities among the five subtypes were less than 10-fold. Alcuronium increased the binding of [3H]N-methylscopalamine to the m2 subtype, but not the m1, m4 and m5 subtypes and only slightly to the m3 subtype. Similar but smaller effects of fangchinoline and tetrandrine were found for [3H]N-methylscopalamine binding to only the m3 subtype. These effects may also be useful for the discrimination of individual subtypes. PMID:7616422

  7. "Warming yang and invigorating qi" acupuncture alters acetylcholine receptor expression in the neuromuscular junction of rats with experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis.

    PubMed

    Huang, Hai-Peng; Pan, Hong; Wang, Hong-Feng

    2016-03-01

    Myasthenia gravis is an autoimmune disorder in which antibodies have been shown to form against the nicotinic acetylcholine nicotinic postsynaptic receptors located at the neuromuscular junction. "Warming yang and invigorating qi" acupuncture treatment has been shown to reduce serum inflammatory cytokine expression and increase transforming growth factor beta expression in rats with experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis. However, few studies have addressed the effects of this type of acupuncture on the acetylcholine receptors at the neuromuscular junction. Here, we used confocal laser scanning microscopy to examine the area and density of immunoreactivity for an antibody to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor at the neuromuscular junction in the phrenic nerve of rats with experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis following "warming yang and invigorating qi" acupuncture therapy. Needles were inserted at acupressure points Shousanli (LI10), Zusanli (ST36), Pishu (BL20), and Shenshu (BL23) once daily for 7 consecutive days. The treatment was repeated after 1 day of rest. We found that area and the integrated optical density of the immunoreactivity for the acetylcholine receptor at the neuromuscular junction of the phrenic nerve was significantly increased following acupuncture treatment. This outcome of the acupuncture therapy was similar to that of the cholinesterase inhibitor pyridostigmine bromide. These findings suggest that "warming yang and invigorating qi" acupuncture treatment increases acetylcholine receptor expression at the neuromuscular junction in a rat model of autoimmune myasthenia gravis.

  8. Molecular properties of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    HAGA, Tatsuya

    2013-01-01

    Muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, which comprise five subtypes (M1-M5 receptors), are expressed in both the CNS and PNS (particularly the target organs of parasympathetic neurons). M1-M5 receptors are integral membrane proteins with seven transmembrane segments, bind with acetylcholine (ACh) in the extracellular phase, and thereafter interact with and activate GTP-binding regulatory proteins (G proteins) in the intracellular phase: M1, M3, and M5 receptors interact with Gq-type G proteins, and M2 and M4 receptors with Gi/Go-type G proteins. Activated G proteins initiate a number of intracellular signal transduction systems. Agonist-bound muscarinic receptors are phosphorylated by G protein-coupled receptor kinases, which initiate their desensitization through uncoupling from G proteins, receptor internalization, and receptor breakdown (down regulation). Recently the crystal structures of M2 and M3 receptors were determined and are expected to contribute to the development of drugs targeted to muscarinic receptors. This paper summarizes the molecular properties of muscarinic receptors with reference to the historical background and bias to studies performed in our laboratories. PMID:23759942

  9. Crystallization scale purification of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from mammalian cells using a BacMam expression system

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Hao; Fan, Chen; Zhang, Si-wei; Wu, Zhong-shan; Cui, Zhi-cheng; Melcher, Karsten; Zhang, Cheng-hai; Jiang, Yi; Cong, Yao; Xu, H Eric

    2015-01-01

    Aim: To report our methods for expression and purification of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR), a ligand-gated pentameric ion channel and an important drug target. Methods: α7-nAChRs of 10 different species were cloned into an inducible BacMam vector with an N-terminal tag of a tandem maltose-binding protein (MBP) and a TEV cleavage site. This α7-nAChR fusion receptor was expressed in mammalian HEK293F cells and detected by Western blot. The expression was scaled up to liters. The receptor was purified using amylose resin and size-exclusion chromatography. The quality of the purified receptor was assessed using SDS-PAGE gels, thermal stability analysis, and negative stain electron microscopy (EM). The expression construct was optimized through terminal truncations and site-directed mutagenesis. Results: Expression screening revealed that α7-nAChR from Taeniopygia guttata had the highest expression levels. The fusion receptor was expressed mostly on the cell surface, and it could be efficiently purified using one-step amylose affinity chromatography. One to two milligrams of the optimized α7-nAChR expression construct were purified from one liter of cell culture. The purified α7-nAChR samples displayed high thermal stability with a Tm of 60 °C, which was further enhanced by antagonist binding but decreased in the presence of agonist. EM analysis revealed ring-like structures with a central hydrophilic hole, which was consistent with the pentameric assembly of the α7-nAChR channel. Conclusion: We have established methods for crystallization scale expression and purification of α7-nAChR, which lays a foundation for high-resolution structural studies using X-ray crystallography or single particle cryo-EM analysis. PMID:26073323

  10. Bupropion-induced inhibition of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed in heterologous cells and neurons from dorsal raphe nucleus and hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Vázquez-Gómez, Elizabeth; Arias, Hugo R; Feuerbach, Dominik; Miranda-Morales, Marcela; Mihailescu, Stefan; Targowska-Duda, Katarzyna M; Jozwiak, Krzysztof; García-Colunga, Jesús

    2014-10-01

    The pharmacological activity of bupropion was compared between α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed in heterologous cells and hippocampal and dorsal raphe nucleus neurons. The inhibitory activity of bupropion was studied on GH3-α7 cells by Ca2+ influx, as well as on neurons from the dorsal raphe nucleus and interneurons from the stratum radiatum of the hippocampal CA1 region by using a whole-cell voltage-clamp technique. In addition, the interaction of bupropion with the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor was determined by [3H]imipramine competition binding assays and molecular docking. The fast component of acetylcholine- and choline-induced currents from both brain regions was inhibited by methyllycaconitine, indicating the participation of α7-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Choline-induced currents in hippocampal interneurons were partially inhibited by 10 µM bupropion, a concentration that could be reached in the brain during clinical administration. Additionally, both agonist-induced currents were reversibly inhibited by bupropion at concentrations that coincide with its inhibitory potency (IC50=54 µM) and binding affinity (Ki=63 µM) for α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors from heterologous cells. The [3H]imipramine competition binding and molecular docking results support a luminal location for the bupropion binding site(s). This study may help to understand the mechanisms of actions of bupropion at neuronal and molecular levels related with its therapeutic actions on depression and for smoking cessation.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-15

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

  12. Activation of muscarinic receptors by non-neuronal acetylcholine.

    PubMed

    Wessler, Ignaz Karl; Kirkpatrick, Charles James

    2012-01-01

    The biological role of acetylcholine and the cholinergic system is revisited based particularly on scientific research early and late in the last century. On the one hand, acetylcholine represents the classical neurotransmitter, whereas on the other hand, acetylcholine and the pivotal components of the cholinergic system (high-affinity choline uptake, choline acetyltransferase and its end product acetylcholine, muscarinic and nicotinic receptors and esterase) are expressed by more or less all mammalian cells, i.e. by the majority of cells not innervated by neurons at all. Moreover, it has been demonstrated that acetylcholine and "cholinergic receptors" are expressed in non-neuronal organisms such as plants and protists. Acetylcholine is even synthesized by bacteria and algae representing an extremely old signalling molecule on the evolutionary timescale. The following article summarizes examples, in which non-neuronal acetylcholine is released from primitive organisms as well as from mammalian non-neuronal cells and binds to muscarinic receptors to modulate/regulate phenotypic cell functions via auto-/paracrine pathways. The examples demonstrate that non-neuronal acetylcholine and the non-neuronal cholinergic system are vital for various types of cells such as epithelial, endothelial and immune cells.

  13. Determinants in the β and δ subunit cytoplasmic loop regulate Golgi trafficking and surface expression of the muscle acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Rudell, Jolene Chang; Borges, Lucia S; Rudell, John B; Beck, Kenneth A; Ferns, Michael J

    2014-01-01

    The molecular determinants that govern nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) assembly and trafficking are poorly defined, and those identified operate largely during initial receptor biogenesis in the endoplasmic reticulum. To identify determinants that regulate later trafficking steps, we performed an unbiased screen using chimeric proteins consisting of CD4 fused to the muscle AChR subunit cytoplasmic loops. In C2 mouse muscle cells, we found that CD4-β and δ subunit loops were expressed at very low levels on the cell surface, whereas the other subunit loops were robustly expressed on the plasma membrane. The low surface expression of CD4-β and δ loops was due to their pronounced retention in the Golgi apparatus and also to their rapid internalization from the plasma membrane. Both retention and recovery were mediated by the proximal 25-28 amino acids in each loop and were dependent on an ordered sequence of charged and hydrophobic residues. Indeed, βK353L and δK351L mutations increased surface trafficking of the CD4-subunit loops by >6-fold and also decreased their internalization from the plasma membrane. Similarly, combined βK353L and δK351L mutations increased the surface levels of assembled AChR expressed in HEK cells to 138% of wild-type levels. This was due to increased trafficking to the plasma membrane and not decreased AChR turnover. These findings identify novel Golgi retention signals in the β and δ subunit loops that regulate surface trafficking of assembled AChR and may help prevent surface expression of unassembled subunits. Together, these results define molecular determinants that govern a Golgi-based regulatory step in nicotinic AChR trafficking.

  14. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and cancer

    PubMed Central

    DANG, NINGNING; MENG, XIANGUANG; SONG, HAIYAN

    2016-01-01

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

  15. Novel role for cyclin-dependent kinase 2 in neuregulin-induced acetylcholine receptor epsilon subunit expression in differentiated myotubes.

    PubMed

    Lu, Gang; Seta, Karen A; Millhorn, David E

    2005-06-10

    Cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) are a family of evolutionarily conserved serine/threonine kinases. CDK2 acts as a checkpoint for the G(1)/S transition in the cell cycle. Despite a down-regulation of CDK2 activity in postmitotic cells, many cell types, including muscle cells, maintain abundant levels of CDK2 protein. This led us to hypothesize that CDK2 may have a function in postmitotic cells. We show here for the first time that CDK2 can be activated by neuregulin (NRG) in differentiated C2C12 myotubes. In addition, this activity is required for expression of the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) epsilon subunit. The switch from the fetal AChRgamma subunit to the adult-type AChRepsilon is required for synapse maturation and the neuromuscular junction. Inhibition of CDK2 activity with either the specific CDK2 inhibitory peptide Tat-LFG or by RNA interference abolished neuregulin-induced AChRepsilon expression. Neuregulin-induced activation of CDK2 also depended on the ErbB receptor, MAPK, and PI3K, all of which have previously been shown to be required for AChRepsilon expression. Neuregulin regulated CDK2 activity through coordinating phosphorylation of CDK2 on Thr-160, accumulation of CDK2 in the nucleus, and down-regulation of the CDK2 inhibitory protein p27 in the nucleus. In addition, we also observed a novel mechanism of regulation of CDK2 activity by a low molecular weight variant of cyclin E in response to NRG. These findings establish CDK2 as an intermediate molecule that integrates NRG-activated signals from both the MAPK and PI3K pathways to AChRepsilon expression and reveal an undiscovered physiological role for CDK2 in postmitotic cells. PMID:15824106

  16. Functional expression of alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in human periodontal ligament fibroblasts and rat periodontal tissues.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiao-Jing; Liu, Ying-Feng; Wang, Qing-Yu; Tsuruoka, Morito; Ohta, Kazumasa; Wu, Sheng-Xi; Yakushiji, Masashi; Inoue, Takashi

    2010-05-01

    Tobacco smoking is the main risk factor associated with chronic periodontitis, but the mechanisms that underlie this relationship are largely unknown. Recent reports proposed that nicotine plays an important role in tobacco-related morbidity by acting through the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed by non-neuronal cells. The aim of this study was to investigate whether alpha 7 nAChR was expressed in periodontal tissues and whether it functions by regulating IL-1 beta in the process of periodontitis. In vitro, human periodontal ligament (PDL) cells were cultured with 10(-12) M of nicotine and/or 10(-9) M of alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-Btx), a alpha 7 nAChR antagonist. The expression of alpha 7 nAChR and IL-1 beta in PDL cells and the effects of nicotine/alpha-Btx administration on their expression were explored. In vivo, an experimental periodontitis rat model was established, and the effects of nicotine/alpha-Btx administration on expression of alpha 7 nAChR and development of periodontitis were evaluated. We found that alpha 7 nAChR was present in human PDL cells and rat periodontal tissues. The expressions of alpha 7 nAChR and IL-1 beta were significantly increased by nicotine administration, whereas alpha-Btx treatment partially suppressed these effects. This study was the first to demonstrate the functional expression of alpha 7 nAChR in human PDL cells and rat periodontal tissues. Our results may be pertinent to a better understanding of the relationships among smoking, nicotine, and periodontitis.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  18. 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…

  19. Mammalian 43-kD acetylcholine receptor-associated protein (RAPsyn) is expressed in some nonmuscle cells

    SciTech Connect

    Musil, L.S.; Frail, D.E.; Merlie, J.P. )

    1989-05-01

    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 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.

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

    PubMed

    Martin, Jessica A; Garczynski, Stephen F

    2016-04-01

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

  1. Age-related Hearing Loss: GABA, Nicotinic Acetylcholine and NMDA Receptor Expression Changes in Spiral Ganglion Neurons of the Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Xiaolan; Zhu, Xiaoxia; Ding, Bo; Walton, Joseph P.; Frisina, Robert D.; Su, Jiping

    2014-01-01

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

  2. Expression of insect α6-like nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in Drosophila melanogaster highlights a high level of conservation of the receptor:spinosyn interaction.

    PubMed

    Perry, Trent; Somers, Jason; Yang, Ying Ting; Batterham, Philip

    2015-09-01

    Insecticide research has often relied on model species for elucidating the resistance mechanisms present in the targeted pests. The accuracy and applicability of extrapolations of these laboratory findings to field conditions varies but, for target site resistance, conserved mechanisms are generally the rule rather than the exception (Perry et al., 2011). The spinosyn class of insecticides appear to fit this paradigm and are a pest control option with many uses in both crop and animal protection. Resistance to spinosyns has been identified in both laboratory-selected and field-collected pest insects. Studies using the model insect, Drosophila melanogaster, have identified the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit, Dα6 as an important target of the insecticide spinosad (Perry et al., 2007; Watson et al., 2010). Field-isolated resistant strains of several agricultural pest insects provide evidence that resistance cases are often associated with mutations in orthologues to Dα6 (Baxter et al., 2010; Puinean et al., 2013). The expression of these receptors is difficult in heterologous systems. In order to examine the biology of the Dα6 receptor subunit further, we used Drosophila as a model and developed an in vivo rescue system. This allowed us to express four different isoforms of Dα6 and show that each is able to rescue the response to spinosad. Regulatory sequences upstream of the Dα6 gene able to rescue the resistance phenotype were identified. Expression of other D. melanogaster subunits revealed that the rescue phenotype appears to be Dα6 specific. We also demonstrate that expression of pest insect orthologues of Dα6 from a variety of species are capable of rescuing the spinosad response phenotype, verifying the relevance of this receptor to resistance monitoring in the field. In the absence of a robust heterologous expression system, this study presents an in vivo model that will be useful in analysing many other aspects of these receptors and

  3. Involvement of alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in gene expression of dopamine biosynthetic enzymes in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Serova, Lidia; Sabban, Esther L

    2002-12-01

    Brain dopaminergic systems are critical in mediating the physiological responses to nicotine. The effects of several concentrations of nicotine (0.08, 0.17, or 0.33 mg/kg body weight) and involvement of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in gene expression of key enzymes in dopamine biosynthesis were evaluated in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and substantia nigra (SN), cell bodies of the mesocorticolimbic and nigrostriatal pathways. Nicotine elicited a dose-dependent elevation of mRNA for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), the rate-limiting enzyme in dopamine biosynthesis in VTA and SN. The VTA was more sensitive to lower concentrations of nicotine with maximal response observed with the lowest dose of nicotine. Nicotine also elevated mRNA levels of GTP cyclohydrolase I (GTPCH), rate limiting in biosynthesis of TH's essential cofactor tetrahydrobiopterin in both dopaminergic locations. The changes in TH and GTPCH mRNAs were correlated. Pretreatment with the alpha7 nAChR antagonist methyllycaconitine prevented the nicotine-induced rise in TH or GTPCH mRNA in VTA and SN. Administration of alpha7 nAChR agonist 3-[2,4-dimethoxybenzilidene]anabaseine at 1 to 10 mg/kg or (E,E-3-(cinnamylidene)anabaseine at 0.3 to 1 mg/kg increased TH mRNA in VTA and SN, but not in peripheral catecholaminergic cells. Thus, agonists of alpha7 nAChRs have therapeutic potential for increasing TH gene expression in dopaminergic regions without some of nicotine's disadvantages, such as its harmful effects on the cardiovascular system. The findings indicate that nicotine may regulate dopamine biosynthesis by alterations in gene expression of TH and its cofactor. The alpha7 nAChRs are involved in mediating these effects of nicotine.

  4. Agonist actions of clothianidin on synaptic and extrasynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed on cockroach sixth abdominal ganglion.

    PubMed

    Thany, Steeve H

    2009-11-01

    Clothianidin is new neonicotinoid insecticide acting selectively on insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Its effects on nAChRs expressed on cercal afferent/giant interneuron synapses and DUM neurons have been studied using mannitol-gap and whole-cell patch-clamp techniques, respectively. Bath-application of clothianidin-induced dose-dependent depolarizations of cockroach cercal afferent/giant interneuron synapses which were not reversed after wash-out suggesting a strong desensitization of postsynaptic interneurons at the 6th abdominal ganglion (A6). Clothinidin activity on the nerve preparation was characterized by an increased firing rate of action potentials which then ceased when the depolarization reached a peak. Clothianidin responses were insensitive to all muscarinic antagonists tested but were blocked by co-application of specific nicotinic antagonists methyllicaconitine, alpha-bungarotoxin and d-tubocurarine. In a second round of experiment, clothianidin actions were tested on DUM neurons isolated from the A6. There was a strong desensitization of nAChRs which was not affected by muscarinic antagonists, pirenzepine and atropine, but was reduced with nicotinic antagonist alpha-bungarotoxin. In addition, clothianidin-induced currents were completely blocked by methyllicaconitine suggesting that (1) clothianidin acted as a specific agonist of nAChR subtypes and (2) a small proportion of receptors blocked by MLA was insensitive to alpha-bungarotoxin. Moreover, because clothianidin currents were blocked by d-tubocurarine and mecamylamine, we provided that clothianidin was an agonist of both nAChRs: imidacloprid-sensitive nAChR1 and -insensitive nAChR2 subtypes. PMID:19583978

  5. Postnatal nicotine effects on the expression of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the developing piglet hippocampus and brainstem.

    PubMed

    Vivekanandarajah, Arunnjah; Waters, Karen A; Machaalani, Rita

    2015-12-01

    Postnatal exposure to cigarette smoke during infancy is associated with increased number of respiratory illnesses, impaired pulmonary function, and the occurrence of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). It is also associated with reduced cognitive functioning and attention deficits in childhood. Nicotine, the major neurotoxic component of cigarette smoke, induces its actions by binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). Using a piglet model of postnatal nicotine exposure, we studied the immunohistochemical expression of nAChR subunits α2, α3, α4, α5, α7, α9, β1 and β2 in the brainstem medulla and the hippocampus, given the role of these structures in cardiorespiratory control and cognition, respectively. We compared piglets exposed postnatally to 2mg/kg/day nicotine for 14 days (n=14: 7 males: 7 females) to controls (n=14: 7 males: 7 females). In the hippocampus, decreased expression was seen for α3 in CA1 (p=0.017), α9 in CA1 (p<0.001) and CA2 (p<0.001), β1 in CA1 (p=0.001) and CA2 (p=0.001) and β2 in CA3 (p=0.036). In the medulla, the nucleus of the spinal trigeminal tract had increased α2 and α4; vestibular nucleus increased α2 and α3, and decreased α4; hypoglossal decreased α3 and β1; dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus decreased α4 and β1. This is the first demonstration that non-classical nAChR subunits are affected by postnatal nicotine in the developing brain, and the implications are discussed. PMID:26440997

  6. Postnatal nicotine effects on the expression of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the developing piglet hippocampus and brainstem.

    PubMed

    Vivekanandarajah, Arunnjah; Waters, Karen A; Machaalani, Rita

    2015-12-01

    Postnatal exposure to cigarette smoke during infancy is associated with increased number of respiratory illnesses, impaired pulmonary function, and the occurrence of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). It is also associated with reduced cognitive functioning and attention deficits in childhood. Nicotine, the major neurotoxic component of cigarette smoke, induces its actions by binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). Using a piglet model of postnatal nicotine exposure, we studied the immunohistochemical expression of nAChR subunits α2, α3, α4, α5, α7, α9, β1 and β2 in the brainstem medulla and the hippocampus, given the role of these structures in cardiorespiratory control and cognition, respectively. We compared piglets exposed postnatally to 2mg/kg/day nicotine for 14 days (n=14: 7 males: 7 females) to controls (n=14: 7 males: 7 females). In the hippocampus, decreased expression was seen for α3 in CA1 (p=0.017), α9 in CA1 (p<0.001) and CA2 (p<0.001), β1 in CA1 (p=0.001) and CA2 (p=0.001) and β2 in CA3 (p=0.036). In the medulla, the nucleus of the spinal trigeminal tract had increased α2 and α4; vestibular nucleus increased α2 and α3, and decreased α4; hypoglossal decreased α3 and β1; dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus decreased α4 and β1. This is the first demonstration that non-classical nAChR subunits are affected by postnatal nicotine in the developing brain, and the implications are discussed.

  7. Identification and functional expression of a family of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits in the central nervous system of the mollusc Lymnaea stagnalis.

    PubMed

    van Nierop, Pim; Bertrand, Sonia; Munno, David W; Gouwenberg, Yvonne; van Minnen, Jan; Spafford, J David; Syed, Naweed I; Bertrand, Daniel; Smit, August B

    2006-01-20

    We described a family of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits underlying cholinergic transmission in the central nervous system (CNS) of the mollusc Lymnaea stagnalis. By using degenerate PCR cloning, we identified 12 subunits that display a high sequence similarity to nAChR subunits, of which 10 are of the alpha-type, 1 is of the beta-type, and 1 was not classified because of insufficient sequence information. Heterologous expression of identified subunits confirms their capacity to form functional receptors responding to acetylcholine. The alpha-type subunits can be divided into groups that appear to underlie cation-conducting (excitatory) and anion-conducting (inhibitory) channels involved in synaptic cholinergic transmission. The expression of the Lymnaea nAChR subunits, assessed by real time quantitative PCR and in situ hybridization, indicates that it is localized to neurons and widespread in the CNS, with the number and localization of expressing neurons differing considerably between subunit types. At least 10% of the CNS neurons showed detectable nAChR subunit expression. In addition, cholinergic neurons, as indicated by the expression of the vesicular ACh transporter, comprise approximately 10% of the neurons in all ganglia. Together, our data suggested a prominent role for fast cholinergic transmission in the Lymnaea CNS by using a number of neuronal nAChR subtypes comparable with vertebrate species but with a functional complexity that may be much higher.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Functional properties of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors co-expressed with RIC-3 in a stable recombinant CHO-K1 cell line.

    PubMed

    Roncarati, Renza; Seredenina, Tamara; Jow, Brian; Jow, Flora; Papini, Silvia; Kramer, Angela; Bothmann, Hendrick; Dunlop, John; Terstappen, Georg C

    2008-04-01

    Heterologous functional expression of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) is difficult to achieve in mammalian cell lines, and the reasons have been associated with a lack of expression of the putative chaperone factor RIC-3. Here, we describe the generation and functional and pharmacological characterization of a Chinese hamster ovary (CHO)-K1 cell line co-expressing the human alpha7 nAChR and RIC-3. Stable recombinant cells expressing alpha7 nAChR on the plasma membrane were selected by binding of fluorochrome-conjugated alpha-bungarotoxin and fluorescence-activated cell sorting. The presence of functional alpha7 channels was demonstrated by whole cell patch clamp recordings. Nicotine and acetylcholine induced rapid desensitizing currents with 50% effective concentration values of 14 and 37 microM, respectively, with agonist-evoked currents detected in approximately 75% of the cell population. Surprisingly, when tested in a FLIPR (Molecular Devices, Sunnyvale, CA) Ca(2+) assay, activation of alpha7 nAChRs was measured only when nicotinic agonists were applied either in the presence of the positive allosteric modulator (PAM) PNU-120596 or after pretreatment of cells with the tyrosine kinase inhibitor genistein. No Ca(2+) influx was measured upon addition of agonists alone or together with allosteric potentiators such as 5-hydroxyindole that predominantly increase the apparent peak amplitude without robustly affecting the current desensitization rate, as exemplified by PNU-120596. These results show that functional alpha7 nAChRs can stably be expressed in the non-neuronal CHO-K1 cell line. This recombinant cell system is useful for characterization of alpha7 nAChRs and to study the mechanism of action of chemical modulators, in particular the detection of PAMs capable of slowing receptor desensitization kinetics.

  11. [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. PMID:7214035

  12. The Oncogenic Functions of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Yue

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are ion channels that are expressed in the cell membrane of all mammalian cells, including cancer cells. Recent findings suggest that nAChRs not only mediate nicotine addiction in the brain but also contribute to the development and progression of cancers directly induced by nicotine and its derived carcinogenic nitrosamines whereas deregulation of the nAChRs is observed in many cancers, and genome-wide association studies (GWAS) indicate that SNPs nAChRs associate with risks of lung cancers and nicotine addiction. Emerging evidences suggest nAChRs are posited at the central regulatory loops of numerous cell growth and prosurvival signal pathways and also mediate the synthesis and release of stimulatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters induced by their agonists. Thus nAChRs mediated cell signaling plays an important role in stimulating the growth and angiogenic and neurogenic factors and mediating oncogenic signal transduction during cancer development in a cell type specific manner. In this review, we provide an integrated view of nAChRs signaling in cancer, heightening on the oncogenic properties of nAChRs that may be targeted for cancer treatment. PMID:26981122

  13. The Oncogenic Functions of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yue

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are ion channels that are expressed in the cell membrane of all mammalian cells, including cancer cells. Recent findings suggest that nAChRs not only mediate nicotine addiction in the brain but also contribute to the development and progression of cancers directly induced by nicotine and its derived carcinogenic nitrosamines whereas deregulation of the nAChRs is observed in many cancers, and genome-wide association studies (GWAS) indicate that SNPs nAChRs associate with risks of lung cancers and nicotine addiction. Emerging evidences suggest nAChRs are posited at the central regulatory loops of numerous cell growth and prosurvival signal pathways and also mediate the synthesis and release of stimulatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters induced by their agonists. Thus nAChRs mediated cell signaling plays an important role in stimulating the growth and angiogenic and neurogenic factors and mediating oncogenic signal transduction during cancer development in a cell type specific manner. In this review, we provide an integrated view of nAChRs signaling in cancer, heightening on the oncogenic properties of nAChRs that may be targeted for cancer treatment. PMID:26981122

  14. 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.

  15. Pharmacological approaches to targeting muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Matera, Carlo; Tata, Ada M

    2014-01-01

    The presence of cholinergic system markers and muscarinic receptor subtypes in several tissues also of nonneuronal type has been largely demonstrated. Acetylcholine, synthesized in the nervous system, can locally contribute to modulate cell proliferation, survival and apoptosis. Considering that the cholinergic system functions are impaired in a number of disorders, the identification of new drugs regulating these functions appears of great clinical relevance. The possible involvement of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in different pathologies has been proposed in recent years and is becoming an important area of study. However, the lack of selective muscarinic receptor ligands has for long time limited the therapeutic treatment based on muscarinic receptors as targets. To date, some muscarinic ligands such as xanomeline (patent, US5980933) or cevimeline (patents US4855290, US5571918) have been developed for the treatment of several pathologies (Alzheimer's and Sjogren's diseases). The present review will be focused on the potential effects produced by muscarinic receptor activation in different pathologies, including tumors. In fact, the potential use of muscarinic ligands in therapeutic protocols in cancer therapy will be discussed, considering that several muscarinic antagonists, already used in the treatment of genitourinary diseases (e.g. darifenacin, patent, US5096890, US6106864), have also been demonstrated to arrest the tumor growth in vivo. Moreover, the contribution of muscarinic receptors to analgesia is also reviewed. Finally, some of the most significant achievements in the field of bitopic/dualsteric ligands will be discussed and the molecules patented so far will be presented.

  16. Modulation of cerebral microvascular permeability by endothelial nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Hawkins, Brian T; Egleton, Richard D; Davis, Thomas P

    2005-07-01

    Nicotine increases the permeability of the blood-brain barrier in vivo. This implies a possible role for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the regulation of cerebral microvascular permeability. Expression of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits in cerebral microvessels was investigated with immunofluorescence microscopy. Positive immunoreactivity was found for receptor subunits alpha3, alpha5, alpha7, and beta2, but not subunits alpha4, beta3, or beta4. Blood-brain barrier permeability was assessed via in situ brain perfusion with [14C]sucrose. Nicotine increased the rate of sucrose entry into the brain from 0.3 +/- 0.1 to 1.1 +/- 0.2 microl.g(-1).min(-1), as previously described. This nicotine-induced increase in blood-brain barrier permeability was significantly attenuated by both the blood-brain barrier-permeant nicotinic antagonist mecamylamine and the blood-brain barrier-impermeant nicotinic antagonist hexamethonium to 0.5 +/- 0.2 and 0.3 +/- 0.2 microl.g(-1).min(-1), respectively. These data suggest that nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed on the cerebral microvascular endothelium mediate nicotine-induced changes in blood-brain barrier permeability.

  17. 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.

  18. Resistance to Inhibitors of Cholinesterase 3 (Ric-3) Expression Promotes Selective Protein Associations with the Human α7-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Interactome

    PubMed Central

    Mulcahy, Matthew J.; Blattman, Sydney B.; Barrantes, Francisco J.; Lukas, Ronald J.; Hawrot, Edward

    2015-01-01

    The α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR) is a ligand-gated ion channel widely expressed in vertebrates and is associated with numerous physiological functions. As transmembrane ion channels, α7-nAChRs need to be expressed on the surface of the plasma membrane to function. The receptor has been reported to associate with proteins involved with receptor biogenesis, modulation of receptor properties, as well as intracellular signaling cascades and some of these associated proteins may affect surface expression of α7-nAChRs. The putative chaperone resistance to inhibitors of cholinesterase 3 (Ric-3) has been reported to interact with, and enhance the surface expression of, α7-nAChRs. In this study, we identified proteins that associate with α7-nAChRs when Ric-3 is expressed. Using α-bungarotoxin (α-bgtx), we isolated and compared α7-nAChR-associated proteins from two stably transfected, human tumor-derived cell lines: SH-EP1-hα7 expressing human α7-nAChRs and the same cell line further transfected to express Ric-3, SH-EP1-hα7-Ric-3. Mass spectrometric analysis of peptides identified thirty-nine proteins that are associated with α7-nAChRs only when Ric-3 was expressed. Significantly, and consistent with reports of Ric-3 function in the literature, several of the identified proteins are involved in biological processes that may affect nAChR surface expression such as post-translational processing of proteins, protein trafficking, and protein transport. Additionally, proteins affecting the cell cycle, the cytoskeleton, stress responses, as well as cyclic AMP- and inositol triphosphate-dependent signaling cascades were identified. These results illuminate how α-bgtx may be used to isolate and identify α7-nAChRs as well as how the expression of chaperones such as Ric-3 can influence proteins associating with α7-nAChRs. These associating proteins may alter activities of α7-nAChRs to expand their functionally-relevant repertoire as well as to affect

  19. Melatonin attenuated mediators of neuroinflammation and alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor mRNA expression in lipopolysaccharide (LPS) stimulated rat astrocytoma cells, C6.

    PubMed

    Niranjan, Rituraj; Nath, Chandishwar; Shukla, Rakesh

    2012-09-01

    Melatonin has been known to affect a variety of astrocytes functions in many neurological disorders but its mechanism of action on neuroinflammatory cascade and alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR) expression are still not properly understood. Present study demonstrated that treatment of C6 cells with melatonin for 24 hours significantly decreased lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced nitrative and oxidative stress, expressions of cyclooxigenase-2 (COX-2), inducible nitric-oxide synthase (iNOS) and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). Melatonin also modulated LPS-induced mRNA expressions of α7-nAChR and inflammatory cytokine genes. Furthermore, melatonin reversed LPS-induced changes in C/EBP homologous protein 10 (CHOP), microsomal prostaglandin E synthase-1(mPGES-1) and phosphorylated p38 mitogen activated protein kinase (P-p38). Treatment with pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC) inhibited α7-nAChR mRNA expression in LPS-induced C6 cells. Our findings explored anti-neuroinflammatory action of melatonin, which may suggests its beneficial roles in the neuroinflammation associated disorders.

  20. 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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2014-05-01

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

  2. Functional properties of homomeric, human alpha 7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors heterologously expressed in the SH-EP1 human epithelial cell line.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Lingke; Kuo, Yen-Ping; George, Andrew A; Peng, Jian-Hong; Purandare, Madhuri Singh; Schroeder, Katherine M; Lukas, Ronald J; Wu, Jie

    2003-06-01

    alpha 7-Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (alpha 7-nAChRs) are broadly distributed in the central nervous system, where they play important roles in chemical and electrical signaling, and perhaps in neurite outgrowth, synaptic plasticity, and neuronal death/survival. To help elucidate their normal and pathophysiological roles, we have heterologously expressed human alpha 7-nAChR in transfected SH-EP1 human epithelial cells. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and mRNA fluorescence in situ hybridization analyses demonstrate expression of human alpha 7 subunits as messenger RNA. Patch-clamp recordings exploiting a novel strategy to prevent functional rundown of whole-cell peak current responses to repeated acute challenges with nicotinic agonists show successful expression of functional alpha 7-nAChR that mediate inward currents characterized by rapid phases of activation and inactivation. Concentration-response curves show that nicotine, acetylcholine, and choline are efficacious agonists at human alpha 7-nAChRs. Current-voltage relationships show inward rectification for agonist-induced currents. Human alpha 7-nAChRs exhibit some sensitivity to alpha 7-nAChR antagonists alpha-bungarotoxin (Bgt) or methyllycaconitine (MLA) when applied coincidentally with agonist, but much higher affinity block occurs when cells and alpha 7-nAChRs are pre-exposed to antagonists for 2 min before challenge with agonist. Both Bgt and MLA are competitive inhibitors of alpha 7-nAChR function. Whole-cell current peak amplitudes and half-times for inactivation of alpha 7-nAChR functional responses to nicotine are dramatically reduced in the absence of extracellular Ca2+, suggestive of high Ca2+ permeability of the alpha 7-nAChR channel. Thus, heterologously expressed human alpha 7-nAChR in mammalian cells have properties of native alpha 7-nAChR or of alpha 7-nAChR heterologously expressed in other systems and serve as excellent models for studies of molecular bases of alpha 7-n

  3. MICE EXPRESSING THE ADNFLE VALINE 287 LEUCINE MUTATION OF THE β2 NICOTINIC ACETYLCHOLINE RECEPTOR SUBUNIT DISPLAY INCREASED SENSITIVITY TO ACUTE NICOTINE ADMINISTRATION AND ALTERED PRESYNAPTIC NICOTINIC RECEPTOR FUNCTION

    PubMed Central

    O’Neill, Heidi C.; Laverty, Duncan C.; Patzlaff, Natalie E.; Cohen, Bruce N.; Fonck, Carlos; McKinney, Sheri; McIntosh, J. Michael; Lindstrom, Jon M.; Lester, Henry A.; Grady, Sharon R.; Marks, Michael J.

    2012-01-01

    Several mutations in α4 or β2 nicotinic receptor subunits are linked to autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy (ADNFLE). One such missense mutation in the gene encoding the β2 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit (CHRNB2) is a valine-to-leucine substitution in the second transmembrane domain at position 287 (β2VL). Previous studies indicated that the β2VL mutation in mice alters circadian rhythm consistent with sleep alterations observed in ADNFLE patients (Xu et al., 2011). The current study investigates changes in nicotinic receptor function and expression that may explain the behavioral phenotype of β2VL mice. No differences in β2 mRNA expression were found between wild-type (WT) and heterozygous (HT) or homozygous mutant (MT) mice. However, antibody and ligand binding indicated that the mutation resulted in a reduction in receptor protein. Functional consequences of the β2VL mutation were assessed biochemically using crude synaptosomes. A gene-dose dependent increase in sensitivity to activation by acetylcholine and decrease in maximal nAChR-mediated [3H]-dopamine release and 86Rb efflux were observed. Maximal nAChR-mediated [3H]-GABA release in the cortex was also decreased in the MT, but maximal [3H]-GABA release was retained in the hippocampus. Behaviorally both HT and MT mice demonstrated increased sensitivity to nicotine-induced hypolocomotion and hypothermia. Furthermore, WT mice display only a tonic-clonic seizure (EEG recordable) 3 min after injection of a high dose of nicotine, while MT mice also display a dystonic arousal complex (non-EEG recordable) event 30 s after nicotine injection. Data indicate decreases in maximal response for certain measures are larger than expected given the decrease in receptor expression. PMID:23123803

  4. Mice expressing the ADNFLE valine 287 leucine mutation of the Β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit display increased sensitivity to acute nicotine administration and altered presynaptic nicotinic receptor function.

    PubMed

    O'Neill, Heidi C; Laverty, Duncan C; Patzlaff, Natalie E; Cohen, Bruce N; Fonck, Carlos; McKinney, Sheri; McIntosh, J Michael; Lindstrom, Jon M; Lester, Henry A; Grady, Sharon R; Marks, Michael J

    2013-01-01

    Several mutations in α4 or β2 nicotinic receptor subunits are linked to autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy (ADNFLE). One such missense mutation in the gene encoding the β2 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit (CHRNB2) is a valine-to-leucine substitution in the second transmembrane domain at position 287 (β2VL). Previous studies indicated that the β2VL mutation in mice alters circadian rhythm consistent with sleep alterations observed in ADNFLE patients (Xu et al., 2011). The current study investigates changes in nicotinic receptor function and expression that may explain the behavioral phenotype of β2VL mice. No differences in β2 mRNA expression were found between wild-type (WT) and heterozygous (HT) or homozygous mutant (MT) mice. However, antibody and ligand binding indicated that the mutation resulted in a reduction in receptor protein. Functional consequences of the β2VL mutation were assessed biochemically using crude synaptosomes. A gene-dose dependent increase in sensitivity to activation by acetylcholine and decrease in maximal nAChR-mediated [(3)H]-dopamine release and (86)Rb efflux were observed. Maximal nAChR-mediated [(3)H]-GABA release in the cortex was also decreased in the MT, but maximal [(3)H]-GABA release was retained in the hippocampus. Behaviorally both HT and MT mice demonstrated increased sensitivity to nicotine-induced hypolocomotion and hypothermia. Furthermore, WT mice display only a tonic-clonic seizure (EEG recordable) 3 min after injection of a high dose of nicotine, while MT mice also display a dystonic arousal complex (non-EEG recordable) event 30s after nicotine injection. Data indicate decreases in maximal response for certain measures are larger than expected given the decrease in receptor expression.

  5. Neuronal damage and changes in the expression of muscarinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes in the neonatal rat cerebral cortical upon exposure to sparteine, a quinolizidine alkaloid.

    PubMed

    Flores-Soto, M E; Bañuelos-Pineda, J; Orozco-Suárez, S; Schliebs, R; Beas-Zárate, C

    2006-10-01

    Sparteine is a quinolizidine alkaloid (QA) produced by Lupine species that has generated much interest due to its anti-hypertensive, anti-pyretic, and anti-inflammatory properties. In the nervous system, sparteine has been shown to display anti-cholinergic and depressive activity, although how sparteine exerts its toxic effects in the brain remains unclear. We have addressed this issue by administering subcutaneous injections of sparteine (25 mg/kg of body weight) to rats on postnatal days 1 and 3, and then examining the expression of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) subunits m1-m4 in the brains of the neonatal rats 14-60 days later. Administration of sparteine to neonatal rats caused neuronal damage in the cerebral motor cortex accompanied by transient changes in the expression of m1-m4 mAChR subunits as revealed by both RT-PCR and Western blotting. This effect could be prevented by pre-treatment with atropine (10 mg/kg) 1 h prior to the injection of sparteine, suggesting that the cytotoxic activity of sparteine is mediated through mAChRs. PMID:16843632

  6. Potentiation of the actions of acetylcholine, epibatidine, and nicotine by methyllycaconitine at fetal muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Green, Benedict T; Welch, Kevin D; Cook, Daniel; Gardner, Dale R

    2011-07-15

    Methyllycaconitine (MLA) is a norditerpenoid alkaloid found in high abundance in toxic Delphinium (larkspur) species. It is a potent and selective antagonist of α(7)-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, but has not been well investigated for activity aside from receptor antagonism. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of MLA alone and in combination with acetylcholine, epibatidine, nicotine, and neostigmine for actions other than receptor antagonism in TE-671 cells expressing (α(1))(2)β(1)γδ nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Ligand activity was assessed through measurements of membrane potential changes in TE-671 cells using a fluorescent membrane potential-sensitive dye and normalized to the maximum response to epibatidine (10μM). MLA was ineffective in changing cell membrane potential in the absence of other receptor agonists. However at nanomolar concentrations, it acted as a co-agonist to potentiate TE-671 cell responses to acetylcholine, epibatidine, nicotine, and neostigmine. These results suggest that the poisoning of cattle by norditerpenoid alkaloids found in larkspur may be more complex than previously determined.

  7. Activation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors via their allosteric binding sites.

    PubMed Central

    Jakubík, J; Bacáková, L; Lisá, V; el-Fakahany, E E; Tucek, S

    1996-01-01

    Ligands that bind to the allosteric-binding sites on muscarinic acetylcholine receptors alter the conformation of the classical-binding sites of these receptors and either diminish or increase their affinity for muscarinic agonists and classical antagonists. It is not known whether the resulting conformational change also affects the interaction between the receptors and the G proteins. We have now found that the muscarinic receptor allosteric modulators alcuronium, gallamine, and strychnine (acting in the absence of an agonist) alter the synthesis of cAMP in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells expressing the M2 or the M4 subtype of muscarinic receptors in the same direction as the agonist carbachol. In addition, most of their effects on the production of inositol phosphates in CHO cells expressing the M1 or the M3 muscarinic receptor subtypes are also similar to (although much weaker than) those of carbachol. The agonist-like effects of the allosteric modulators are not observed in CHO cells that have not been transfected with the gene for any of the subtypes of muscarinic receptors. The effects of alcuronium on the formation of cAMP and inositol phosphates are not prevented by the classical muscarinic antagonist quinuclidinyl benzilate. These observations demonstrate for the first time that the G protein-mediated functional responses of muscarinic receptors can be evoked not only from their classical, but also from their allosteric, binding sites. This represents a new mechanism of receptor activation. PMID:8710935

  8. Postnatal changes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha 2, alpha 3, alpha 4, alpha 7 and beta 2 subunits genes expression in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Zhang, X; Liu, C; Miao, H; Gong, Z H; Nordberg, A

    1998-10-01

    Postnatal changes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) alpha 2, alpha 3, alpha 4, alpha 7 and beta 2 subunits mRNAs were investigated in rat brain using ribonuclease protection assay. Multiple developmental patterns were observed: (1) transient expression during the first few postnatal weeks; alpha 2 in the hippocampus and brain stem, alpha 3 in the striatum, cerebellum and cortex, alpha 4 in the hippocampus, striatum and cerebellum, alpha 7 in the cerebellum and beta 2 in the striatum. (2) Constant expression across development; alpha 2 and alpha 3 in the thalamus, alpha 4 in the cortex, thalamus and brain stem, alpha 7 in the thalamus and brain stem and beta 2 in all brain regions except striatum. (3) Non-detection across development; alpha 2 in the cortex, striatum and cerebellum. (4) Increase with age; alpha 7 in the cortex and hippocampus. (5) Bell-shaped development; alpha 7 in the striatum. Postnatal changes of nAChR isoforms in different brain regions of rat were investigated by receptor binding assays. The developmental patterns of [3H]epibatidine and (-)-[3H]nicotine binding sites were similar to each other in each brain region, but different from that of [3H] alpha-bungarotoxin binding sites. No obvious correlation was observed between the developmental patterns of [3H] alpha-bungarotoxin, [3H]epibatidine and (-)-[3H]nicotine binding sites and corresponding subunits mRNAs. These results indicate that multiple mechanisms are involved in changes of gene expression of nAChRs subunits in the brain of developing rats.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-01

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

  11. 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

  12. 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

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

    SciTech Connect

    Middlemas, D.S.

    1987-01-01

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

  14. Distinct primary structures, ligand-binding properties and tissue-specific expression of four human muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed Central

    Peralta, E G; Ashkenazi, A; Winslow, J W; Smith, D H; Ramachandran, J; Capon, D J

    1987-01-01

    To investigate the molecular basis for the diversity in muscarinic cholinergic function, we have isolated the genes encoding the human M1 and M2 muscarinic receptors (mAChR) as well as two previously undiscovered mAChR subtypes, designated HM3 and HM4. The amino acid sequence of each subtype reflects a structure consisting of seven, highly conserved transmembrane segments and a large intracellular region unique to each subtype, which may constitute the ligand-binding and effector-coupling domains respectively. Significant differences in affinity for muscarinic ligands were detected in individual mAChR subtypes produced by transfection of mammalian cells. Each subtype exhibited multiple affinity states for agonists; differences among subtypes in the affinities and proportions of such sites suggest the capacity of mAChR subtypes to interact differentially with the cellular effector-coupling apparatus. Subtype-specific mRNA expression was observed in the heart, pancreas and a neuronal cell line, indicating that the regulation of mAChR gene expression contributes to the differentiation of cholinergic activity. Images Fig. 3. PMID:3443095

  15. Design and expression of human alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor extracellular domain mutants with enhanced solubility and ligand-binding properties.

    PubMed

    Zouridakis, Marios; Zisimopoulou, Paraskevi; Eliopoulos, Elias; Poulas, Konstantinos; Tzartos, Socrates J

    2009-02-01

    In order to facilitate structural studies of the extracellular domain (ECD) of human alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), we designed several mutants, since the wild-type-ECD forms large oligomers and microaggregates, and expressed them in the yeast Pichia pastoris. Mutant design was based on a 3D model of human alpha7-nAChR-ECD, constructed using as templates the X-ray crystal structure of the homologous acetylcholine-binding protein (AChBP) and the electron microscopy structure of the Torpedo alpha-nAChR-ECD. At least one mutant, mut10, carrying six single-point mutations (Phe3Tyr, Val69Thr, Cys116Ser, Ile165Thr, Val177Thr, Phe187Tyr) and the replacement of its Cys-loop with the corresponding and more hydrophilic AChBP Cys-loop, was expressed with a 4-fold higher expression yield (1.2 mg/L) than the wild-type alpha7-ECD, existing exclusively as a soluble oligomeric, probably pentameric, form, at concentrations up to at least 10 mg/mL, as judged by gel filtration and dynamic light scattering. This mutant displayed a significantly improved (125)I-alpha-bungarotoxin-binding affinity (K(d)=24 nM) compared to the wild-type-ECD (K(d)=70 nM), the binding being inhibited by unlabelled alpha-bungarotoxin, d-tubocurarine or nicotine (K(i) of 21.5 nM, 127 microM and 17.5 mM, respectively). Circular dichroism studies of mut10 revealed (a) a similar secondary structure composition ( approximately 5% alpha-helix, approximately 45% beta-sheet) to that of the AChBP, Torpedo alpha-nAChR-ECD, and mouse alpha1-nAChR-ECD, (b) a well-defined tertiary structure and (c) binding of small cholinergic ligands at micromolar concentrations. Furthermore, electron microscopy showed well-assembled, probably pentameric, particles of mut10. Finally, since deglycosylation did not alter its solubility or ligand-binding properties, mut10, in either its glycosylated or deglycosylated form, is a promising alpha7-ECD mutant for structural studies, useful for the rational drug design to

  16. Alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression by vascular smooth muscle cells facilitates the deposition of Abeta peptides and promotes cerebrovascular amyloid angiopathy.

    PubMed

    Clifford, Peter M; Siu, Gilbert; Kosciuk, Mary; Levin, Eli C; Venkataraman, Venkateswar; D'Andrea, Michael R; Nagele, Robert G

    2008-10-01

    Deposition of beta-amyloid (Abeta) peptides in the walls of brain blood vessels, cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA), is common in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD). Previous studies have demonstrated Abeta peptide deposition among vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs), but the source of the Abeta and basis for its selective deposition in VSMCs are unknown. In the present study, we examined the deposition patterns of Abeta peptides, Abeta40 and Abeta42, within the cerebrovasculature of AD and control patients using single- and double-label immunohistochemistry. Abeta40 and Abeta42 were abundant in VSMCs, especially in leptomeningeal arteries and their initial cortical branches; in later-stage AD brains this pattern extended into the microvasculature. Abeta peptide deposition was linked to loss of VSMC viability. Perivascular leak clouds of Abeta-positive material were associated primarily with arterioles. By contrast, control brains possessed far fewer Abeta42- and Abeta40-immunopositive blood vessels, with perivascular leak clouds of Abeta-immunopositive material rarely observed. We also demonstrate that VSMCs in brain blood vessels express the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (alpha7nAChR), which has high binding affinity for Abeta peptides, especially Abeta42. These results suggest that the blood and blood-brain barrier permeability provide a major source of the Abeta peptides that gradually deposit in brain VSMCs, and the presence and abundance of the alpha7nAChR on VSMCs may facilitate the selective accumulation of Abeta peptides in these cells.

  17. [Probable mechanism of recognition of cholinergic ligands by acetylcholine receptors].

    PubMed

    Demushkin, V P; Kotelevtsev, Iu V; Pliashkevich, Iu G; Khramtsov, N V

    1982-01-01

    Dryding's models were used for the conformational analysis of compounds affecting muscarin-specific acetylcholine receptor and nicotin-specific acetylcholine receptor. Ammonium group and ether oxygen (3.6 A apart from the ammonium group) specifically oriented to each other were shown to be necessary structural elements to reveal muscarin-type cholinergic activity. Ammonium group along with carbonyl oxygen or its substituent (5 A distance) are the necessary structural units providing nicotin-type cholinergic activity. The presence of two hydrophobic substituents (one in the ammonium area and the other neighbouring the second active grouping) is the additional factor. The developed principles were justified by the use of a series of synthetic samples. The compounds were obtained likely favouring affinitive modification of acetylcholine receptor (dissociation constants of acetylcholine receptor complexes equalling to 10(-4)--10(-7) M-1). PMID:7070378

  18. α5 Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor mediates nicotine-induced HIF-1α and VEGF expression in non-small cell lung cancer.

    PubMed

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

    2014-07-15

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

  19. 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

  20. Alpha 7-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and prodynorphin mRNA expression after administration of (-)-nicotine and U-50,488H in beta-amyloid peptide (25-35)-treated mice.

    PubMed

    Hiramatsu, M; Watanabe, M; Baba, S; Kojima, R; Nabeshima, T

    2004-10-01

    We previously reported that (-)-nicotine and kappa-opioid receptor agonists lessened impairment of learning and/or memory in several animal models. Furthermore, these drugs prevented neurodegenerative damage induced by ischemia or beta-amyloid peptide (25-35). In the present study, we tested whether (-)-nicotine and U-50,488H prevent delayed-memory impairment induced by beta-amyloid peptide (25-35), and changes of expression of alpha7-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptor mRNA and prodynorphin mRNA. Seven days after treatment with beta-amyloid peptide (25-35) (9 nmol/mouse, i.c.v.), memory impairment was observed in the Y-maze test. Memory impairment was prevented when (-)-nicotine (6.16 micromol/kg, s.c.) or U-50,488H (21 micromol/kg, s.c.) was administered 1 h before, but not 1 h after, beta-amyloid peptide (25-35) treatment. There was no change in prodynorphin mRNA or alpha7-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptor mRNA expression in the hippocampus 10 days after beta-amyloid peptide (25-35) treatment alone. Of interest, mRNA expression of not only prodynorphin, but also the alpha7-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, was significantly decreased when U-50,488H was administered 1 h before, but not 1 h after, treatment with beta-amyloid peptide (25-35). However, these changes were not observed after the administration of (-)-nicotine. These results suggest that activation of the kappa-opioid system, but not beta7-type nicotinic receptors has a neuroprotective effect on beta-amyloid peptide (25-35)-induced memory impairment, and may be involved in the long-lasting changes in the expression of these mRNAs.

  1. Frizzled-9 impairs acetylcholine receptor clustering in skeletal muscle cells

    PubMed Central

    Avilés, Evelyn C.; Pinto, Cristina; Hanna, Patricia; Ojeda, Jorge; Pérez, Viviana; De Ferrari, Giancarlo V.; Zamorano, Pedro; Albistur, Miguel; Sandoval, Daniel; Henríquez, Juan P.

    2014-01-01

    Cumulative evidence indicates that Wnt pathways play crucial and diverse roles to assemble the neuromuscular junction (NMJ), a peripheral synapse characterized by the clustering of acetylcholine receptors (AChR) on postsynaptic densities. The molecular determinants of Wnt effects at the NMJ are still to be fully elucidated. We report here that the Wnt receptor Frizzled-9 (Fzd9) is expressed in developing skeletal muscles during NMJ synaptogenesis. In cultured myotubes, gain- and loss-of-function experiments revealed that Fzd9-mediated signaling impairs the AChR-clustering activity of agrin, an organizer of postsynaptic differentiation. Overexpression of Fzd9 induced the cytosolic accumulation of β-catenin, a key regulator of Wnt signaling. Consistently, Fzd9 and β-catenin localize in the postsynaptic domain of embryonic NMJs in vivo. Our findings represent the first evidence pointing to a crucial role of a Fzd-mediated, β-catenin-dependent signaling on the assembly of the vertebrate NMJ. PMID:24860427

  2. 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

  3. Acetylcholine receptor channel imaged in the open state

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Unwin, Nigel

    1995-01-01

    The structure of the open-channel form of the acetylcholine receptor has been determined from electron images of Torpedo ray postsynaptic membranes activated by brief (<5ms) mixing with droplets containing acetylcholine. Comparison with the closed-channel form shows that acetylcholine initiates small rotations of the subunits in the extracellular domain, which trigger a change in configuration of α-helices lining the membrane-spanning pore. The open pore tapers towards the intracellular membrane face, where it is shaped by a 'barrel' of α-helices having a pronounced right-handed twist.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2014-07-15

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

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

    PubMed

    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

    2015-12-01

    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.

  6. 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

  7. Effect of homologous serotonin receptor loop substitutions on the heterologous expression in Pichia of a chimeric acetylcholine-binding protein with alpha-bungarotoxin-binding activity.

    PubMed

    Paulo, Joao A; Hawrot, Edward

    2009-10-01

    The molluscan acetylcholine-binding protein (AChBP) is a soluble homopentameric homolog of the extracellular domain of various ligand-gated ion channels. Previous studies have reported that AChBP, when fused to the ion pore domain of the serotonin receptor (5HT(3A)R), can form a functional ligand-gated chimeric channel only if the AChBP loop regions between beta-strands beta1 and beta2 (beta1-beta2), beta6 and beta7 (beta6-beta7), and beta8 and beta9 (beta8-beta9) are replaced with those of the 5HT(3A)R. To investigate further the potential interactions among these three important loop regions in a membrane- and detergent-free system, we designed AChBP constructs in which loops beta1-beta2, beta6-beta7, and beta8-beta9 of the AChBP were individually and combinatorially substituted in all permutations with the analogous loops of the 5HT(3A)R. These chimeras were expressed as secreted proteins using the Pichia pastoris yeast expression system. [(125)I]-alpha-Bungarotoxin-binding was detected in the culture media obtained from homologous recombinant clones expressing the wild-type AChBP, the beta1-beta2 loop-only chimera, and the chimera containing all three 5HT(3A)R loop substitutions. The remaining chimeras failed to show [(125)I]-alpha-bungarotoxin binding, and further analysis of cellular extracts allowed us to determine that these binding-negative chimeric constructs accumulated intracellularly and were not secreted into the culture medium. Our results demonstrate that coordinated interactions among loops beta1-beta2, beta6-beta7, and beta8-beta9 are essential for the formation of a functional ligand-binding site, as evidenced by [(125)I]-alpha-bungarotoxin-binding, and for efficient protein secretion. In addition, the constructs described here demonstrate the feasibility of utilizing soluble scaffolds to explore functionally important interactions within the extracellular domain of membrane-bound proteins. PMID:19427904

  8. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression on B-lymphoblasts of healthy versus schizophrenic subjects stratified for smoking: [3H]-nicotine binding is decreased in schizophrenia and correlates with negative symptoms.

    PubMed

    Luckhaus, Christian; Henning, Uwe; Ferrea, Stefano; Musso, Francesco; Mobascher, Arian; Winterer, Georg

    2012-05-01

    Heavy smoking and schizophrenia are diversely associated with nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression, as was shown for brain and lymphocytes. Most studies so far have not systematically differentiated between schizophrenia smokers and non-smokers and were confined either to in vivo or post-mortem study approaches. In order to avoid variable in vivo influences or post-mortem bias, we used stably transformed B-lymphoblast cultures derived from healthy and schizophrenia subjects stratified for smoking versus non-smoking in order to differentiate these clinical conditions with regard to nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression and regulation. Receptor quantities were measured using [(3)H]-nicotine and [(3)H]-epibatidine binding. At baseline, [(3)H]-nicotine binding was not statistically different between healthy smokers and never-smokers (1.59 ± 0.73 vs. 1.26 ± 0.91 fmol/10(6) cells), while it was reduced in schizophrenia smokers compared to healthy smokers (1.05 ± 0.69 fmol vs. 1.44 ± 0.84/10(6) cells, P = 0.01). In schizophrenia, baseline [(3)H]-nicotine correlated inversely with higher PANSS negative subscale scores. After long-term nicotine incubation (1 μM), [3H]-nicotine binding increased in the group of schizophrenia smokers only (from 1.05 ± 0.69 to 1.54 ± 0.77 fmol/106 cells, P = 0.013), while [(3)H]-epibatidine binding decreased in this group (4.52 ± 1.52 to 3.82 ± 1.38 fmol/10(6) cells, P = 0.038). Our data are in further support of a decrease of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression in schizophrenia linked to negative psychotic symptoms, which may be counter-regulated by nicotine exposure.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  10. Increased sensitivity to nicotine-induced seizures in mice expressing the L250T alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor mutation.

    PubMed

    Broide, Ron S; Salas, Ramiro; Ji, Daoyun; Paylor, Richard; Patrick, James W; Dani, John A; De Biasi, Mariella

    2002-03-01

    High doses of nicotine, the addictive component of tobacco, induce clonic-tonic seizures in animals. Pharmacological and biochemical data have suggested that alpha 7-containing neuronal nicotinic receptors (nAChRs) contribute to these seizures. To study potential alpha 7 contributions, we examined alpha 7 subunits with a Leu250-to-Thr substitution in the channel domain, which creates a gain-of-function mutation. Previous studies have shown that mice homozygous for the alpha 7 L250T mutation (T/T) die shortly after birth, but animals heterozygous for the mutation (+/T) are viable and grow to adulthood. Hippocampal neurons from the +/T mice exhibited altered alpha 7-type currents with increased amplitudes and slower desensitization kinetics, confirming a partial gain of function for the alpha 7 nAChR. We found that +/T mice were more sensitive to the convulsant effects of nicotine compared with their wild-type (+/+) littermates. Furthermore, although their behavior was normal in basal conditions, +/T mice showed a unique nicotine-induced phenotype, consisting of head-bobbing and paw-tapping movements. Increased sensitivity to nicotine-induced seizures occurred despite a 60% decline in brain alpha 7 nAChR protein levels. There were no changes in the levels of alpha 4, alpha 5, alpha 6, alpha 7, beta 2, and beta 4 mRNA, or in [(125)I]epibatidine and [(3)H]nicotine binding between +/T and +/+ mice. Recent data from our laboratory show that alpha 7-null mice maintain normal sensitivity to nicotine-induced seizures. Hence, these present findings suggest that alterations in the properties rather than absence of alpha 7 nAChRs might affect the mechanisms underlying the convulsive properties of nicotine.

  11. Evaluation of benzyltetrahydroisoquinolines as ligands for neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Exley, Richard; Iturriaga-Vásquez, Patricio; Lukas, Ronald J; Sher, Emanuele; Cassels, Bruce K; Bermudez, Isabel

    2005-01-01

    Effects of derivatives of coclaurine (C), which mimic the ‘eastern' or the nonquaternary halves of the alkaloids tetrandrine or d-tubocurarine, respectively, both of which are inhibitors of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nACh), were examined on recombinant, human α7, α4β2 and α4β4 nACh receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes and clonal cell lines using two-electrode voltage clamping and radioligand binding techniques. In this limited series, Cs have higher affinity and are most potent at α4 subunit-containing-nACh receptors and least potent at homomeric α7 receptors, and this trend is very marked for the N-unsubstituted C and its O,O′-bisbenzyl derivative. 7-O-Benzyl-N-methylcoclaurine (BBCM) and its 12-O-methyl derivative showed the highest affinities and potencies at all three receptor subtypes, and this suggests that lipophilicity at C7 and/or C12 increases potency. Laudanosine and armepavine (A) were noncompetitive and voltage-dependent inhibitors of α7, α4β2 or α4β4 receptors, but the bulkier C7-benzylated 7BNMC (7-O-benzyl-N-methylcoclaurine) and 7B12MNMC (7-O-benzyl-N,12-O-dimethyl coclaurine) were voltage-independent, noncompetitive inhibitors of nACh receptors. Voltage-dependence was also lost on going from A to its N-ethyl analogue. These studies suggest that C derivatives may be useful tools for studies characterising the antagonist and ion channel sites on human α7, α4β2 or α4β4 nACh receptors and for revealing structure–function relationships for nACh receptor antagonists. PMID:15980871

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-07-01

    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

  16. A constitutively active G protein-coupled acetylcholine receptor regulates motility of larval Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    MacDonald, Kevin; Kimber, Michael J; Day, Tim A; Ribeiro, Paula

    2015-07-01

    The neuromuscular system of helminths controls a variety of essential biological processes and therefore represents a good source of novel drug targets. The neuroactive substance, acetylcholine controls movement of Schistosoma mansoni but the mode of action is poorly understood. Here, we present first evidence of a functional G protein-coupled acetylcholine receptor in S. mansoni, which we have named SmGAR. A bioinformatics analysis indicated that SmGAR belongs to a clade of invertebrate GAR-like receptors and is related to vertebrate muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Functional expression studies in yeast showed that SmGAR is constitutively active but can be further activated by acetylcholine and, to a lesser extent, the cholinergic agonist, carbachol. Anti-cholinergic drugs, atropine and promethazine, were found to have inverse agonist activity towards SmGAR, causing a significant decrease in the receptor's basal activity. An RNAi phenotypic assay revealed that suppression of SmGAR activity in early-stage larval schistosomulae leads to a drastic reduction in larval motility. In sum, our results provide the first molecular evidence that cholinergic GAR-like receptors are present in schistosomes and are required for proper motor control in the larvae. The results further identify SmGAR as a possible candidate for antiparasitic drug targeting.

  17. Expression of a highly antigenic and native-like folded extracellular domain of the human α1 subunit of muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, suitable for use in antigen specific therapies for Myasthenia Gravis.

    PubMed

    Niarchos, Athanasios; Zouridakis, Marios; Douris, Vassilis; Georgostathi, Assimina; Kalamida, Dimitra; Sotiriadis, Alexandros; Poulas, Konstantinos; Iatrou, Kostas; Tzartos, Socrates J

    2013-01-01

    We describe the expression of the extracellular domain of the human α1 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) in lepidopteran insect cells (i-α1-ECD) and its suitability for use in antigen-specific therapies for Myasthenia Gravis (MG). Compared to the previously expressed protein in P. pastoris (y-α1-ECD), i-α1-ECD had a 2-fold increased expression yield, bound anti-nAChR monoclonal antibodies and autoantibodies from MG patients two to several-fold more efficiently and resulted in a secondary structure closer to that of the crystal structure of mouse α1-ECD. Our results indicate that i-α1-ECD is an improved protein for use in antigen-specific MG therapeutic strategies. PMID:24376846

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-08-01

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

  20. A Conserved Motif in the Membrane Proximal C-Terminal Tail of Human Muscarinic M1 Acetylcholine Receptors Affects Plasma Membrane Expression

    PubMed Central

    Ehlert, Frederick J.; Shults, Crystal A.

    2010-01-01

    We investigated the functional role of a conserved motif, F(x)6LL, in the membrane proximal C-tail of the human muscarinic M1 (hM1) receptor. By use of site-directed mutagenesis, several different point mutations were introduced into the C-tail sequence 423FRDTFRLLL431. Wild-type and mutant hM1 receptors were transiently expressed in Chinese hamster ovary cells, and the amount of plasma membrane-expressed receptor was determined by use of intact, whole-cell [3H]N-methylscopolamine binding assays. The plasma membrane expression of hM1 receptors possessing either L430A or L431A or both point mutations was significantly reduced compared with the wild type. The hM1 receptor possessing a L430A/L431A double-point mutation was retained in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), and atropine treatment caused the redistribution of the mutant receptor from the ER to the plasma membrane. Atropine treatment also caused an increase in the maximal response and potency of carbachol-stimulated phosphoinositide hydrolysis elicited by the L430A/L431A mutant. The effect of atropine on the L430A/L431A receptor mutant suggests that L430 and L431 play a role in folding hM1 receptors, which is necessary for exit from the ER. Using site-directed mutagenesis, we also identified amino acid residues at the base of transmembrane-spanning domain 1 (TM1), V46 and L47, that, when mutated, reduce the plasma membrane expression of hM1 receptors in an atropine-reversible manner. Overall, these mutagenesis data show that amino acid residues in the membrane-proximal C-tail and base of TM1 are necessary for hM1 receptors to achieve a transport-competent state. PMID:19841475

  1. 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.

  2. Nicotine alters lung branching morphogenesis through the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Wongtrakool, Cherry; Roser-Page, Susanne; Rivera, Hilda N; Roman, Jesse

    2007-09-01

    There is abundant epidemiological data linking prenatal environmental tobacco smoke with childhood asthma and wheezing, but the underlying molecular and physiological mechanisms that occur in utero to explain this link remain unelucidated. Several studies suggest that nicotine, which traverses the placenta, is a causative agent. Therefore, we studied the effects of nicotine on lung branching morphogenesis using embryonic murine lung explants. We found that the expression of alpha(7) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, which mediate many of the biological effects of nicotine, is highest in pseudoglandular stage lungs compared with lungs at later stages. We then studied the effects of nicotine in the explant model and found that nicotine stimulated lung branching in a dose-dependent fashion. alpha-Bungarotoxin, an antagonist of alpha(7) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, blocked the stimulatory effect of nicotine, whereas GTS-21, a specific agonist, stimulated branching, thereby mimicking the effects of nicotine. Explants deficient in alpha(7) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors did not respond to nicotine. Nicotine also stimulated the growth of the explant. Altogether, these studies suggest that nicotine stimulates lung branching morphogenesis through alpha(7) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and may contribute to dysanaptic lung growth, which in turn may predispose the host to airway disease in the postnatal period.

  3. Primary structure of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Final report, 9 April 1989-6 April 1992

    SciTech Connect

    Patrick, J.W.

    1992-05-06

    Signals are transmitted between cells in the brain using neurotransmitters and neurotransmitter receptors. Poisons that interfere with this process stop normal brain function and often kill nerve cells. One of the neurotransmitters used in the mammalian brain is acetylcholine. We discovered that there is a large number of different nicotinic receptors for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, each with its different properties. We used recombinant DNA technology to clone and sequence the gene transcripts that encode the subunits of these receptors. From these sequences we deduced the primary structures of the nicotinic receptor subunits. We also used the cDNA clones to determine which brain loci express the respective genes. We have expressed the clones in the Xenopus oocyte and have demonstrated that each functional combination of subunits has a unique pharmacology Unlike their homologs at the neuromuscular junction, the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the brain are exceptionally permeable to calcium. This property suggests that these receptors may play an important role in regulating calcium-dependent cytoplasmic processes and that they may be important contributors to use-dependent cell death.

  4. AduoLa Fuzhenglin down-regulates microwave-induced expression of β1-adrenergic receptor and muscarinic type 2 acetylcholine receptor in myocardial cells of rats.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jing; Peng, Rui Yun; Gao, Ya Bing; Wang, Shui Ming; Yang, Lei Lei; Zhao, Li; Dong, Ji; Yao, Bin Wei; Chang, Gong Min; Xiong, Lu

    2014-03-01

    This paper is aimed to study the effect of ADL on expression of β1-AR and M2-AchR in myocardial cells of rats exposed to microwave radiation. Immunohistochemistry, Western blot and image analysis were used to detect the expression of β1-AR and M2-AchR in myocardial cells at 7 and 14 d after microwave exposure. The results show that the expression level was higher in microwave exposure group and 0.75 g/(kg•d) ADL group than in sham operation group and significantly lower in 1.5 and 3.0 g/(kg•d) ADL groups than in microwave group. So we have a conclusion that the expression of β1-AR and M2-AchR is down-regulated in myocardial cells of rats exposed to microwave radiation. ADL can protect rats against microwave-induced heart tissue injury.

  5. Effects of chronic nicotine treatment on expression of diverse nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes. I. Dose- and time-dependent effects of nicotine treatment.

    PubMed

    Ke, L; Eisenhour, C M; Bencherif, M; Lukas, R J

    1998-08-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) exist as a diverse family of physiologically important ligand-gated ion channels active in classic, excitatory neurotransmission and perhaps in more novel forms of neurochemical signaling. Because of their critical functional roles centrally and peripherally, nAChRs are ideal targets for the regulation of nervous system function. nAChRs also are targets of nicotine, which acts acutely like acetylcholine to stimulate nAChR function. Here, we report studies using model cell culture systems testing the general hypothesis that more chronic nicotine exposure has unique effects on nAChRs. Chronic nicotine treatment induces increases in numbers of human muscle-type nAChRs containing alpha-1, beta-1, gamma and delta subunits, a human ganglionic nAChR subtype containing alpha-3 and beta-4 subunits and a human ganglionic nAChR containing alpha-7 subunits in intracellular and (except for alpha-7 nAChRs) in cell surface pools. However, the half-maximal potency with which nicotine has these effects differs across these nAChR subtypes, as do rates and magnitudes of the "nicotine-induced nAChR up-regulation." These changes in nAChR numbers are not attributable to either transient or sustained changes in nAChR subunit mRNA levels. Nicotine exposure more potently, more rapidly, and with nAChR-subtype specificity, induces two phases of losses in functional responsiveness of muscle-type nAChRs and alpha-3 beta-4 nAChRs, including a "persistent inactivation" that is distinct from classicly defined "desensitization." Based on these results, we hypothesize that chronic nicotine treatment induces persistent functional inactivation and numerical up-regulation of all nAChR subtypes via distinct post-transcriptional mechanisms and with potencies, at rates and with magnitudes that are nAChR-subtype specific. We also hypothesize that chronic nicotine exposure produces long-lasting changes in nervous system function, at least in part, by disabling

  6. Primary cultures of rat cortical microglia treated with nicotine increases in the expression of excitatory amino acid transporter 1 (GLAST) via the activation of the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Morioka, N; Tokuhara, M; Nakamura, Y; Idenoshita, Y; Harano, S; Zhang, F F; Hisaoka-Nakashima, K; Nakata, Y

    2014-01-31

    Although the clearance of glutamate from the synapse under physiological conditions is performed by astrocytic glutamate transporters, their expression might be diminished under pathological conditions. Microglia glutamate transporters, however, might serve as a back-up system when astrocytic glutamate uptake is impaired, and could have a prominent neuroprotective function under pathological conditions. In the current study, the effect of nicotine, well known as a neuroprotective molecule, on the function of glutamate transporters in cultured rat cortical microglia was examined. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction and pharmacological approaches demonstrated that, glutamate/aspartate transporter (GLAST), not glutamate transporter 1 (GLT-1), is the major functional glutamate transporter in cultured cortical microglia. Furthermore, the α7 subunit was demonstrated to be the key subunit comprising nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptors in these cells. Treatment of cortical microglia with nicotine led to a significant increase of GLAST mRNA expression and (14)C-glutamate uptake in a concentration- and time-dependent manner, which were markedly inhibited by pretreatment with methyllycaconitine, a selective α7 nACh receptor antagonist. The nicotine-induced expression of GLAST mRNA and protein is mediated through an inositol trisphosphate (IP3) and Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) depend intracellular pathway, since pretreatment with either xestospongin C, an IP3 receptor antagonist, or KN-93, a CaMKII inhibitor, blocked GLAST expression. Together, these findings indicate that activation of nACh receptors, specifically those expressing the α7 subunit, on cortical microglia could be a key mechanism of the neuroprotective effect of nACh receptor ligands such as nicotine.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. END-PLATE ACETYLCHOLINE RECEPTOR: STRUCTURE, MECHANISM, PHARMACOLOGY, AND DISEASE

    PubMed Central

    Sine, Steven M.

    2012-01-01

    The synapse is a localized neurohumoral contact between a neuron and an effector cell and may be considered the quantum of fast intercellular communication. Analogously, the postsynaptic neurotransmitter receptor may be considered the quantum of fast chemical to electrical transduction. Our understanding of postsynaptic receptors began to develop about a hundred years ago with the demonstration that electrical stimulation of the vagus nerve released acetylcholine and slowed the heart beat. During the past 50 years, advances in understanding postsynaptic receptors increased at a rapid pace, owing largely to studies of the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) at the motor endplate. The endplate AChR belongs to a large superfamily of neurotransmitter receptors, called Cys-loop receptors, and has served as an exemplar receptor for probing fundamental structures and mechanisms that underlie fast synaptic transmission in the central and peripheral nervous systems. Recent studies provide an increasingly detailed picture of the structure of the AChR and the symphony of molecular motions that underpin its remarkably fast and efficient chemoelectrical transduction. PMID:22811427

  11. Immunochemical studies of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    André, C; Marullo, S; Guillet, J G; Convents, A; Lauwereys, M; Kaveri, S; Hoebeke, J; Strosberg, A D

    1987-01-01

    Muscarinic receptors have been purified from calf forebrain plasma cell membranes by affinity chromatography on a dexetimide-agarose gel. SDS-PAGE analysis showed a single 70 kDa band. Monoclonal antibodies have been prepared against these affinity purified 70 kDa protein(s). One antibody, M-35, immunoprecipitated up to 80% of digitonin-solubilized muscarinic receptors. M-35 had agonist-like effects on guinea-pig myometrium: it increased the intracellular cyclic GMP content, decreased prostaglandin-induced cyclic AMP accumulation and caused muscle contractions. The two first effects were inhibited by atropine. M-35 was used to visualize muscarinic receptors at the surface of human fibroblastic cells. In the particular cell line used, the receptors have a low affinity for pirenzepine, were negatively coupled to adenylate cyclase and mediated increase in the phosphatidyl-inositol breakdown. PMID:3040987

  12. The activation of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor by the transmitter.

    PubMed

    Taylor, D B; Spivak, C E

    1985-02-01

    Experimental evidence has been published from isolated guinea pig muscle in vitro, and from direct ligand binding to receptors from T. californica, indicating that two agonist ions react with the nicotinic receptor by exchanging for one magnesium ion. It is the basis of the ion exchange receptor pair model, in which two acetylcholine ions exchange for one magnesium ion in contact with and between a pair of negatively charged receptor groups about 4 A apart. In the resting state the electrostatic attraction between the negatively charged receptor groups and the Mg2+ ion exerts a binding force. This binding force is opposed by the quantum mechanical repulsions of the electron clouds of the charged groups and ions in contact, together with the mutual repulsion of the pair of receptor oxyanions. When the Mg2+ ion is replaced by two acetylcholine ions the quaternary heads of the latter are positioned so that they form two mutually repelling ACh+ receptor group dipoles. As the Mg2+ ion leaves, its rehydration energy contributes to the sum of the electron cloud repulsions and the ACh+ receptor group dipole repulsions, causing the receptor groups to be forced apart activating the receptor macromolecule. The subsequent decrease in ACh+ concentration results in the reestablishment of the resting state. The coulombic electrostatic energy, the Born repulsion energy, the London attraction energy and the oxyanion ACh+ dipole repulsion energies have been calculated and shown to be consistent with the model. The displacement of the Mg2+ by two ACh+ ions makes several hundred kcals of energy available for receptor group separation and receptor activation.

  13. 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.

  14. Suitability of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor α7 and Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor 3 Antibodies for Immune Detection: Evaluation in Murine Skin.

    PubMed

    Rommel, Frank R; Raghavan, Badrinarayanan; Paddenberg, Renate; Kummer, Wolfgang; Tumala, Susanne; Lochnit, Günter; Gieler, Uwe; Peters, Eva M J

    2015-05-01

    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

  15. 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.

  16. Interaction of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M₂ subtype with G protein Gα(i/o) isotypes and Gβγ subunits as studied with the maltose-binding protein-M₂-Gα(i/o) fusion proteins expressed in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Ichiyama, Susumu; Nemoto, Reiko; Tanabe, Hiroaki; Haga, Tatsuya

    2014-11-01

    We expressed the fusion proteins of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M2 subtype (M2 receptor) with a maltose-binding protein (MBP) and various G protein α subunits (Gα(i1-i3/o)) at its N- and C-terminals, respectively (MBP-M2-Gα(i/o)), in Escherichia coli, and examined the effect of G protein βγ subunits (Gβγ) on the receptor-Gα interaction as assessed by agonist- and GDP-dependent [(35)S]GTPγS binding of the fusion proteins. We found that (i) Gβγ promoted both the agonist-dependent and -independent [(35)S]GTPγS binding with little effect on the guanine nucleotide-sensitive high-affinity agonist binding, (ii) the specific [(35)S]GTPγS binding activity was much greater for MBP-M2-Gα(oA) than for MBP-M2-Gα(i1-i3) in the absence of Gβγ, whereas Gβγ preferentially promoted the agonist-dependent decrease in the affinity for GDP of MBP-M2-Gα(i1-i3) rather than of MBP-M2-Gα(oA), and (iii) the proportion of agonist-dependent [(35)S]GTPγS binding was roughly 50% irrespective of species of Gα and the presence or absence of Gβγ. These results demonstrate that receptor-Gα fusion proteins expressed in E. coli could be useful for studies of receptor-G interaction.

  17. 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.

  18. Galantamine-induced amyloid-{beta} clearance mediated via stimulation of microglial nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Takata, Kazuyuki; Kitamura, Yoshihisa; Saeki, Mana; Terada, Maki; Kagitani, Sachiko; Kitamura, Risa; Fujikawa, Yasuhiro; Maelicke, Alfred; Tomimoto, Hidekazu; Taniguchi, Takashi; Shimohama, Shun

    2010-12-17

    Reduction of brain amyloid-β (Aβ) has been proposed as a therapeutic target for Alzheimer disease (AD), and microglial Aβ phagocytosis is noted as an Aβ clearance system in brains. Galantamine is an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor approved for symptomatic treatment of AD. Galantamine also acts as an allosterically potentiating ligand (APL) for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). APL-binding site is located close to but distinct from that for acetylcholine on nAChRs, and FK1 antibody specifically binds to the APL-binding site without interfering with the acetylcholine-binding site. We found that in human AD brain, microglia accumulated on Aβ deposits and expressed α7 nAChRs including the APL-binding site recognized with FK1 antibody. Treatment of rat microglia with galantamine significantly enhanced microglial Aβ phagocytosis, and acetylcholine competitive antagonists as well as FK1 antibody inhibited the enhancement. Thus, the galantamine-enhanced microglial Aβ phagocytosis required the combined actions of an acetylcholine competitive agonist and the APL for nAChRs. Indeed, depletion of choline, an acetylcholine-competitive α7 nAChR agonist, from the culture medium impeded the enhancement. Similarly, Ca(2+) depletion or inhibition of the calmodulin-dependent pathways for the actin reorganization abolished the enhancement. These results suggest that galantamine sensitizes microglial α7 nAChRs to choline and induces Ca(2+) influx into microglia. The Ca(2+)-induced intracellular signaling cascades may then stimulate Aβ phagocytosis through the actin reorganization. We further demonstrated that galantamine treatment facilitated Aβ clearance in brains of rodent AD models. In conclusion, we propose a further advantage of galantamine in clinical AD treatment and microglial nAChRs as a new therapeutic target. PMID:20947502

  19. Effects of alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor positive allosteric modulator on lipopolysaccharide-induced neuroinflammatory pain in mice.

    PubMed

    Abbas, Muzaffar; Rahman, Shafiqur

    2016-07-15

    Evidence indicates that microglial activation contributes to the pathophysiology and maintenance of neuroinflammatory pain involving central nervous system alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. The objective of the present study was to determine the effects of 3a,4,5,9b-Tetrahydro-4-(1-naphthalenyl)-3H-cyclopentan[c]quinoline-8-sulfonamide (TQS), an alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor positive allosteric modulator (PAM), on tactile allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia following lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced microglial activation in hippocampus, a neuroinflammatory pain model in mice. In addition, we examined the effects of TQS on microglial activation marker, an ionized calcium-binding adapter molecule 1 (Iba-1), in the hippocampus may be associated with neuroinflammatory pain. Pretreatment of TQS (4mg/kg) significantly reduced LPS (1mg/kg)-induced tactile allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia. Moreover, pretreatment of methyllycaconitine (3mg/kg) significantly reversed TQS-induced antiallodynic and antihyperalgesic responses indicating the involvement of alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Pretreatment of TQS significantly decreased LPS-induced increased in hippocampal Iba-1 expression. Overall, these results suggest that TQS reduces LPS-induced neuroinflammatory pain like symptoms via modulating microglial activation likely in the hippocampus and/or other brain region by targeting alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Therefore, alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor PAM such as TQS could be a potential drug candidate for the treatment of neuroinflammatory pain.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-15

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

  1. Counting Bungarotoxin Binding Sites of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in Mammalian Cells with High Signal/Noise Ratios

    PubMed Central

    Simonson, Paul D.; DeBerg, Hannah A.; Ge, Pinghua; Alexander, John K.; Jeyifous, Okunola; Green, William N.; Selvin, Paul R.

    2010-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are some of the most studied synaptic proteins; however, many questions remain that can only be answered using single molecule approaches. Here we report our results from single α7 and neuromuscular junction type nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in mammalian cell membranes. By labeling the receptors with fluorophore-labeled bungarotoxin, we can image individual receptors and count the number of bungarotoxin-binding sites in receptors expressed in HEK 293 cells. Our results indicate that there are two bungarotoxin-binding sites in neuromuscular junction receptors, as expected, and five in α7 receptors, clarifying previous uncertainty. This demonstrates a valuable technique for counting subunits in membrane-bound proteins at the single molecule level, with nonspecialized optics and with higher signal/noise ratios than previous fluorescent protein-based techniques. PMID:21081055

  2. 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.

  3. Identification of subunits of acetylcholine receptor that interact with a cholesterol photoaffinity probe

    SciTech Connect

    Middlemas, D.S.; Raftery, M.A.

    1987-03-10

    All four subunits of the acetylcholine receptor in membrane vesicles isolated from Torpedo californica have been labeled with (/sup 3/H)cholesteryl diazoacetate. As this probe incorporates into lipid bilayers analogously to cholesterol, this result indicates that acetylcholine receptor interacts with cholesterol. This investigation also demonstrates that this probe is a useful reagent for studying the interaction of cholesterol with membrane proteins.

  4. Fluorescent staining of acetylcholine receptors in vertebrate skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, M. J.; Cohen, M. W.

    1974-01-01

    1. α-Bungarotoxin was labelled with fluorescent dyes and used as a stain for visualizing the distribution of acetylcholine receptors in vertebrate skeletal muscle fibres. 2. Dye-toxin conjugates had the same pharmacological properties as native toxin, but their potencies were lower. 3. Fluorescent staining was examined in teased muscle fibres. The stain was found to be confined to the neuromuscular junction and associated with the subsynaptic membrane. 4. Staining intensity was reduced by curare and even more so by carbachol, but not by atropine or neostigmine. Pre-treatment of muscles with unlabelled α-bungarotoxin entirely prevented staining. 5. The staining at amphibian neuromuscular junctions was characterized by a pattern of intense transverse bands occurring at intervals of approximately 0·5-1 μm, with fluorescence of lower intensity between them. Fluorescent staining was not detected on adjacent, extrasynaptic, muscle membrane. In side views the staining appeared as a fine line with small protuberances occurring at the same intervals as the intense bands seen face-on. These results indicate that acetylcholine receptors are associated with the entire subsynaptic membrane, including the membrane of the junctional folds and that their density changes abruptly at the border between synaptic and extrasynaptic muscle membrane. ImagesPlate 3Plate 4Plate 1Plate 2 PMID:4133039

  5. Purification of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors by affinity chromatography.

    PubMed Central

    André, C; De Backer, J P; Guillet, J C; Vanderheyden, P; Vauquelin, G; Strosberg, A D

    1983-01-01

    Calf forebrain homogenates contain 2.8 pM muscarinic acetylcholine receptors per mg of protein. [3H]Antagonist saturation binding experiments under equilibrium conditions revealed a single class of sites with equilibrium dissociation constants of 0.82 nM for [3H]dexetimide and 0.095 nM for [3H]quinuclidinyl benzilate. Displacement binding studies with agonists revealed the presence of low and high affinity sites. Here we describe the solubilization of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors with digitonin and their purification by affinity chromatography using an affinity gel which consisted of dexetimide coupled to Affi-Gel 10 (i.e., carboxy N-hydroxysuccinimide esters linked via a 1 nm spacer arm to agarose beads). Purified proteins were obtained by specific elution with muscarinic drugs, i.e., the antagonist atropine and the irreversible ligand propylbenzilylcholine mustard. SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of the radioiodinated purified preparations revealed a major 70-K protein. Images Fig. 3. PMID:6605245

  6. Perfection of a synaptic receptor: kinetics and energetics of the acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Jackson, M B

    1989-04-01

    The energetics and kinetics of activation of the acetylcholine receptor are evaluated in the context of optimizing rapid synaptic transmission. Physiological needs are used as the basis for estimating optimal values for the closed-to-open channel equilibrium constants of the liganded and unliganded receptor. An estimate is made of the maximum energy that can be derived from the binding of acetylcholine to a perfectly designed receptor binding site. Application of the principle of detailed balance shows that with only one ligand binding site the receptor will not be able to derive enough energy from acetylcholine binding to drive a sufficiently large change in the channel conformational equilibrium. This then provides a rationale for the existence of a second binding site, rather than the often invoked advantage of cooperativity. With two binding sites there is a considerable excess of binding energy and consequently considerable flexibility in how binding energy can be utilized. It is shown that the receptor must have at least one binding site that binds acetylcholine weakly when the channel is closed. This is essential to rapid response termination. However, making the other binding site bind more tightly can enhance and accelerate the activation of the receptor. To optimize both response activation and termination the best solution is to make the two binding sites different in their binding affinities. This qualitatively reproduces an experimental observation. PMID:2538836

  7. Mode of action of the positive modulator PNU-120596 on α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Szabo, Anett K; Pesti, Krisztina; Mike, Arpad; Vizi, E Sylvester

    2014-06-01

    We investigated the mode of action of PNU-120596, a type II positive allosteric modulator of the rat α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expressed by GH4C1 cells, using patch-clamp and fast solution exchange. We made two important observations: first, while PNU-120596 rapidly associated to desensitized receptors, it had at least hundredfold lower affinity to resting conformation, therefore at 10 μM concentration it dissociated from resting receptors; and second, binding of PNU-120596 slowed down dissociation of choline molecules from the receptor radically. We propose that when agonist concentration is transiently elevated in the continuous presence of the modulator (as upon the neuronal release of acetylcholine in a modulator-treated animal) these two elements together cause occurrence of a cycle of events: Binding of the modulator is limited in the absence of the agonist. When the agonist is released, it binds to the receptor, and induces desensitization, thereby enabling modulator binding. Modulator binding in turn traps the agonist within its binding site for a prolonged period of time. Once the agonist finally dissociated, the modulator can also dissociate without re-binding, and the receptor assumes its original resting conformation. In kinetic simulations this "trapped agonist cycle" mechanism did not require that the orthosteric and allosteric ligands symmetrically modify each other's affinity, only the modulator must decrease agonist accessibility, and the agonist must induce a conformation that is accessible to the modulator. This mechanism effectively prolongs and amplifies the effect of the agonist. PMID:24486377

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-12-01

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

  9. The Drosophila Acetylcholine Receptor Subunit Dα5 Is Part of an α-Bungarotoxin Binding Acetylcholine Receptor*

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Peipei; Ma, Dongdong; Pierzchala, Marek; Wu, Jun; Yang, Lee-Chuan; Mai, Xiaoping; Chang, Xiaoying; Schmidt-Glenewinkel, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    The central nervous system of Drosophila melanogaster contains an α-bungarotoxin-binding protein with the properties expected of a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. This protein was purified 5800-fold from membranes prepared from Drosophila heads. The protein was solubilized with 1% Triton X-100 and 0.5 m sodium chloride and then purified using an α-cobratoxin column followed by a lentil lectin affinity column. The purified protein had a specific activity of 3.9 μmol of 125I-α-bungarotoxin binding sites/g of protein. The subunit composition of the purified receptor was determined by sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. This subunit profile was identical with that revealed by in situ labeling of the membrane-bound protein using the photolyzable methyl-4-azidobenzoimidate derivative of 125I-α-bungarotoxin. The purified receptor reveals two different protein bands with molecular masses of 42 and 57 kDa. From sedimentation analysis of the purified protein complex in H2O and D2O and gel filtration, a mass of 270 kDa was calculated. The receptor has a s20,w of 9.4 and a Stoke's radius of 7.4 nm. The frictional coefficient was calculated to be 1.7 indicating a highly asymmetric protein complex compatible with a transmembrane protein forming an ion channel. The sequence of a peptide obtained after tryptic digestion of the 42-kDa protein allowed the specific identification of the Drosophila Dα5 subunit by sequence comparison. A peptide-specific antibody raised against the Dα5 subunit provides further evidence that this subunit is a component of an α-bungarotoxin binding nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from the central nervous system of Drosophila. PMID:15781463

  10. 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.

  11. Acetylcholine receptor clustering is triggered by a change in the density of a nonreceptor molecule

    PubMed Central

    1990-01-01

    Acetylcholine receptors become clustered at the neuromuscular junction during synaptogenesis, at least in part via lateral migration of diffusely expressed receptors. We have shown previously that electric fields initiate a specific receptor clustering event which is dependent on lateral migration in aneural muscle cell cultures (Stollberg, J., and S. E. Fraser. 1988. J. Cell Biol. 107:1397-1408). Subsequent work with this model system ruled out the possibility that the clustering event was triggered by increasing the receptor density beyond a critical threshold (Stollberg, J., and S. E. Fraser. 1990. J. Neurosci. 10:247-255). This leaves two possibilities: the clustering event could be triggered by the field-induced change in the density of some other molecule, or by a membrane voltage-sensitive mechanism (e.g., a voltage- gated calcium signal). Electromigration is a slow, linear process, while voltage-sensitive mechanisms respond in a rapid, nonlinear fashion. Because of this the two possibilities make different predictions about receptor clustering behavior in response to pulsed or alternating electric fields. In the present work we have studied subcellular calcium distributions, as well as receptor clustering, in response to such fields. Subcellular calcium distributions were quantified and found to be consistent with the predicted nonlinear response. Receptor clustering, however, behaves in accordance with the predictions of a linear response, consistent with the electromigration hypothesis. The experiments demonstrate that a local increase in calcium, or, more generally, a voltage-sensitive mechanism, is not sufficient and probably not necessary to trigger receptor clustering. Experiments with slowly alternating electric fields confirm the view that the clustering of acetylcholine receptors is initiated by a local change in the density of some non-receptor molecule. PMID:2229185

  12. Schizophrenia and the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Martin, Laura F; Freedman, Robert

    2007-01-01

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

  13. Influence of acetylcholine on binding of 4-[125I]iododexetimide to muscarinic brain receptors.

    PubMed

    Weckesser, M; Fixmann, A; Holschbach, M; Müller-Gärtner, H W

    1998-11-01

    The distribution of nicotinic and muscarinic cholinergic receptors in the human brain in vivo has been successfully characterized using radiolabeled tracers and emission tomography. The effect of acetylcholine release into the synaptic cleft on receptor binding of these tracers has not yet been investigated. The present study examined the influence of acetylcholine on binding of 4-[125I]iododexetimide to muscarinic cholinergic receptors of porcine brain synaptosomes in vitro. 4-Iododexetimide is a subtype-unspecific muscarinic receptor antagonist with high affinity. Acetylcholine competed with 4-[125I]iododexetimide in a dose-dependent manner. A concentration of 500 microM acetylcholine inhibited 50% of total specific 4-[125I]iododexetimide binding to synaptosomes when both substances were given simultaneously. An 800 microM acetylcholine solution reduced total specific 4-[125I]iododexetimide binding by about 35%, when acetylcholine was given 60 min after incubation of synaptosomes with 4-[125I]iododexetimide. Variations in the synaptic acetylcholine concentration might influence muscarinic cholinergic receptor imaging in vivo using 4-[123I]iododexetimide. Conversely, 4-[123I]iododexetimide might be an appropriate molecule to investigate alterations of acetylcholine release into the synaptic cleft in vivo using single photon emission computed tomography. PMID:9863566

  14. Rapid synthesis of acetylcholine receptors at neuromuscular junctions.

    PubMed

    Ramsay, D A; Drachman, D B; Pestronk, A

    1988-10-11

    The rate of acetylcholine receptor (AChR) degradation in mature, innervated mammalian neuromuscular junctions has recently been shown to be biphasic; up to 20% are rapidly turned over (RTOs; half life less than 1 day) whereas the remainder are lost more slowly ('stable' AChRs; half life 10-12 days). In order to maintain normal junctional receptor density, synthesis and insertion of AChRs should presumably be sufficiently rapid to replace both the RTOs and the stable receptors. We have tested this prediction by blocking pre-existing AChRs in the mouse sternomastoid muscle with alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BuTx), and monitoring the subsequent appearance of 'new' junctional AChRs at intervals of 3 h to 20 days by labeling them with 125I-alpha-BuTx. The results show that new receptors were initially inserted rapidly (16% at 24 h and 28% at 48 h). The rate of increase of 'new' 125I-alpha-BuTx binding sites gradually slowed down during the remainder of the time period studied. Control observations excluded possible artifacts of the experimental procedure including incomplete blockade of AChRs, dissociation of toxin-receptor complexes, or experimentally induced alteration of receptor synthesis. The present demonstration of rapid synthesis and incorporation of AChRs at innervated neuromuscular junctions provides support for the concept of a subpopulation of rapidly turned over AChRs. The RTOs may serve as precursors for the larger population of stable receptors and have an important role in the metabolism of the neuromuscular synapse.

  15. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor ligands; a patent review (2006-2011)

    PubMed Central

    Gündisch, Daniela; Eibl, Christoph

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), pentameric ligand-gated cation channels, are potential targets for the development of therapeutics for a variety of disease states. Areas covered This article is reviewing recent advances in the development of small molecule ligands for diverse nAChR subtypes and is a continuation of an earlier review in this journal. Expert opinion The development of nAChR ligands with preference for α4β2 or α7 subtypes for the treatment of CNS disorders are in the most advanced developmental stage. In addition, there is a fast growing interest to generate so-called PAMs, positive allosteric modulators, to influence the channels’ functionalities. PMID:22098319

  16. Critical metabolic roles of β-cell M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    de Azua, Inigo Ruiz; Gautam, Dinesh; Jain, Shalini; Guettier, Jean-Marc; Wess, Jürgen

    2013-01-01

    Muscarinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptors (mAChRs; M1–M5) regulate the activity of an extraordinarily large number of important physiological processes. We and others previously demonstrated that pancreatic β-cells are endowed with M3 mAChRs which are linked to G proteins of the Gq family. The activation of these receptors by ACh or other muscarinic agonists leads to the augmentation of glucose-induced insulin release via multiple mechanisms. Interestingly, in humans, ACh acting on human β-cell mAChRs is released from adjacent α-cells which express both choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) and the vesicular acetylcholine transporter (vAChT), indicative of the presence of a non-neuronal cholinergic system in human pancreatic islets. In order to shed light on the physiological roles of β-cell M3 receptors, we recently generated and analyzed various mutant mouse models. Specifically, we carried out studies with mice which overexpressed M3 receptors or mutant M3 receptors in pancreatic β-cells or which selectively lacked M3 receptors or M3-receptor-associated proteins in pancreatic β-cells. Our findings indicate that β-cell M3 receptors play a key role in maintaining proper insulin release and whole body glucose homeostasis and that strategies aimed at enhancing signaling through β-cell M3 receptors may prove useful to improve β-cell function for the treatment of type 2 diabetes (T2D). PMID:22525375

  17. 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.

  18. Purification of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor from porcine atria.

    PubMed Central

    Peterson, G L; Herron, G S; Yamaki, M; Fullerton, D S; Schimerlik, M I

    1984-01-01

    The muscarinic acetylcholine receptor from porcine atria has been purified 100,000-fold to homogeneity by solubilization in digitonin/cholate and sequential chromatography on wheat germ agglutinin-agarose, diethylaminoethylagarose, hydroxylapatite, and 3-(2'-aminobenzhydryloxy)tropane-agarose. The yield of purified receptor was 4.3% of that found in the membrane fraction, and the purified receptor bound 11.1-12.8 nmol of L-[3H]quinuclidinyl benzilate per mg of protein, corresponding to a binding component Mr of 78,400-90,000. The purified receptor preparation consisted of two polypeptides in approximately equimolar amounts when examined on silver-stained sodium dodecyl sulfate/polyacrylamide gels. The larger polypeptide (Mr 78,000 on 8% polyacrylamide gels) was specifically alkylated with [3H]propylbenzilylcholine mustard, whereas the smaller polypeptide (Mr 14,800) was not labeled. The possibility that the small polypeptide is a contaminant fortuitously appearing in equimolar amounts with the large polypeptide cannot be ruled out at this time. The purified preparation was highly stable, with no measurable change in the number of ligand binding sites or the gel pattern after 1 month's storage on ice. Scatchard analysis showed a single class of binding sites for the antagonist L-[3H]quinuclidinyl benzilate with a dissociation constant of 61 +/- 4 pM. Equilibrium titration experiments demonstrated that the antagonist L-hyoscyamine displaced L-[3H]quinuclidinyl benzilate from a single class of sites (Kd = 475 +/- 30 pM), whereas the agonist carbamoylcholine interacted at two populations of sites (53% +/- 3% high affinity, Kd = 1.1 +/- 0.3 microM; 47% +/- 3% low affinity, Kd = 67 +/- 14 microM). The ligand binding data were very similar to that for the membrane-bound receptor, suggesting that the receptor has not been altered radically during purification. Images PMID:6589642

  19. 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.

  20. Mechanisms of acetylcholine receptor loss in myasthenia gravis.

    PubMed Central

    Drachman, D B; Adams, R N; Stanley, E F; Pestronk, A

    1980-01-01

    The fundamental abnormality affecting the neuromuscular junctions of myasthenic patients is a reduction of available AChRs, due to an autoimmune attack directed against the receptors. Antibodies to AChR are present in most patients, and there is evidence that they have a predominant pathogenic role in the disease, aided by complement. The mechanism of antibody action involves acceleration of the rate of degradation of AChRs, attributable to cross-linking of the receptors. In addition, antibodies may block AChRs, and may participate in producing destructive changes, perhaps in conjunction with complement. The possibility that cell-mediated mechanisms may play a role in the autoimmune responses of some myasthenic patients remains to be explored. Although the target of the autoimmune attack in myasthenic patients is probably always the acetylcholine receptors, it is not yet clear which of these immune mechanisms are most important. It is likely that the relative role of each mechanism varies from patient to patient. One of the goals of future research will be to identify the relative importance of each of these mechanisms in the individual patient, and to tailor specific immunotherapeutic measures to the abnormalities found. PMID:6249894

  1. Neural regulation of acetylcholine receptors in rat neonatal muscle.

    PubMed Central

    Bambrick, L L; Gordon, T

    1992-01-01

    1. The neuronal regulation of the developmental decline in skeletal muscle acetylcholine (ACh) receptors was studied by comparing the effects of sciatic nerve section or of neuromuscular blockade with botulinum toxin (BoTX) on this decline in neonatal and adult rats, using 125I-alpha-bungarotoxin (125I-BTX) as a ligand for the receptor alpha-subunit. 2. The decline in 125I-BTX binding site concentration in neonatal rat triceps surae muscle homogenates towards low, adult levels followed a simple exponential with a time constant of 8 days. This decline occurred while the muscle is still rapidly growing, before the postnatal increase in numbers of sodium channels. It also preceded the decline in muscle ACh receptor alpha-subunit mRNA, reported in other studies, suggesting that subunit levels are not regulated only by mRNA availability. 3. Muscle denervation in the first two weeks of life prevented this developmental decline. Denervation increased the concentration of 125I-BTX binding sites but the magnitude of this increase became progressively smaller as the muscle matured, showing that removal of innervation during adult life does not revert the muscle, in toto, to its pre-innervation state. 4. Blockade of neuromuscular activity with BoTX increased 125I-BTX binding sites to a lesser extent than muscle denervation during neonatal life. This lesser effect of BoTX blockade contrasts with the equal effects of BoTX blockade and denervation in the adult. PMID:1522519

  2. 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.

  3. Activation of endplate nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by agonists.

    PubMed

    Auerbach, Anthony

    2015-10-15

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

  4. Regulation of the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor by SRC family tyrosine kinases.

    PubMed

    Wang, Kan; Hackett, John T; Cox, Michael E; Van Hoek, Monique; Lindstrom, Jon M; Parsons, Sarah J

    2004-03-01

    Src family kinases (SFKs) are abundant in chromaffin cells that reside in the adrenal medulla and respond to cholinergic stimulation by secreting catecholamines. Our previous work indicated that SFKs regulate acetylcholine- or nicotine-induced secretion, but the site of modulatory action was unclear. Using whole cell recordings, we found that inhibition of SFK tyrosine kinase activity by PP2 (4-amino-5-(4-chlorophenyl)-7-(t-butyl)pyrazolo(3,4-d)pyrimidine) treatment or expression of a kinase-defective c-Src reduced the peak amplitude of nicotine-induced currents in chromaffin cells or in human embryonic kidney cells ectopically expressing functional neuronal alpha3beta4alpha5 acetylcholine receptors (AChRs). Conversely, the phosphotyrosine phosphatase inhibitor, sodium vanadate, or expression of mutationally activated c-Src resulted in enhanced current amplitudes. These results suggest that SFKs and putative phosphotyrosine phosphatases regulate the activity of AChRs by opposing actions. This proposed model was supported further by the findings that SFKs physically associate with the receptor and that the AChR is tyrosine-phosphorylated.

  5. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors controlling attention: behavior, circuits and sensitivity to disruption by nicotine.

    PubMed

    Poorthuis, Rogier B; Mansvelder, Huibert D

    2013-10-15

    Attention is a central cognitive function that enables long-term engagement in a task and suppression of irrelevant information to obtain future goals. The prefrontal cortex (PFC) is the main link in integrating emotional and motivational state of an animal to regulate top-down attentional processes. Acetylcholine modulates PFC neuronal networks by activating nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) to support attention. However, how neuronal activity changes in the PFC during attention and which nAChR subtypes mediate this is only rudimentarily understood, but progress is being made. Recently, exciting new insights were obtained in the dynamics of cholinergic signaling in the PFC and modes of acetylcholine transmission via nAChRs in the cortex. In addition, mechanisms are uncovered on how the PFC circuitry is regulated by nAChRs. Novel studies show that endogenous activation of nAChRs in the PFC plays a central role in controlling attention. Here, we review current insights into how different subtypes of nAChRs expressed by distinct types of neurons in the PFC circuitry shape attention. In addition we discuss the impact of nicotine on the cholinergic system and prefrontal cortical circuits. Low concentrations of nicotine, as experienced by smokers, interfere with cholinergic signaling. In the long-term exposure to nicotine during adolescence leads to maladaptive adaptations of the PFC circuitry, which ultimately leads to a decrement in attention performance, again emphasizing the importance of nAChRs in attention.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. Crosslinking-induced endocytosis of acetylcholine receptors by quantum dots.

    PubMed

    Lee, Chi Wai; Zhang, Hailong; Geng, Lin; Peng, H Benjamin

    2014-01-01

    In a majority of patients with myasthenia gravis (MG), anti-acetylcholine receptor (AChR) antibodies target postsynaptic AChR clusters and thus compromise the membrane integrity of neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) and lead to muscle weakness. Antibody-induced endocytosis of AChRs in the postsynaptic membrane represents the initial step in the pathogenesis of MG; however, the molecular mechanisms underlying AChR endocytosis remain largely unknown. Here, we developed an approach to mimic the pathogenic antibodies for inducing the crosslinking and internalization of AChRs from the postsynaptic membrane. Using biotin-α-bungarotoxin and quantum dot (QD)-streptavidin, cell-surface and internalized AChRs could be readily distinguished by comparing the size, fluorescence intensity, trajectory, and subcellular localization of the QD signals. QD-induced AChR endocytosis was mediated by clathrin-dependent and caveolin-independent mechanisms, and the trafficking of internalized AChRs in the early endosomes required the integrity of microtubule structures. Furthermore, activation of the agrin/MuSK (muscle-specific kinase) signaling pathway strongly suppressed QD-induced internalization of AChRs. Lastly, QD-induced AChR crosslinking potentiated the dispersal of aneural AChR clusters upon synaptic induction. Taken together, our results identify a novel approach to study the mechanisms of AChR trafficking upon receptor crosslinking and endocytosis, and demonstrate that agrin-MuSK signaling pathways protect against crosslinking-induced endocytosis of AChRs. PMID:24587270

  9. Effects of two oxadiazolidinones on cholinesterases and acetylcholine receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Bakry, N.; Lockyer, S.; Sherby, S.; Eldefrawi, A.; Eldefrawi, M.

    1986-03-05

    Inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and butyryl cholinesterase (BuChE) by 3-(2,3-dihydro-2,2-dimethyl-benzofuran-'7-yl)-5-methoxy-1,3,4-oxadiazol-2(/sup 3/H)-one (DBOX) and 3-(2-methoxyphenyl)-5-methoxy-1,3,4-oxadiazol-2(/sup 3/H)-one (MPOX) was measured by the Ellmann spectrophotometric method. Inhibition was quasi first order and irreversible. DBOX was 2-3 orders of magnitude more potent than MPOX. Housefly brain AChE and horse serum BuChE were more sensitive than AChEs of red blood cells or eel and Torpedo electric organs. It is suggested that the nonesteratic oxadiazolidinones are activated to carbanillates on the surface of the enzyme and produce a carbanillated enzyme which ages rapidly. Carbamate anticholinesterases protected AChE against carbanillation as they did against phosphorylation. At higher concentrations, the two oxadiazolidinones also affected binding of (/sup 125/I) ..cap alpha.. bungarotoxin and (/sup 3/H)perhydrohistrionicotoxin to Torpedo nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, but did not affect binding of (/sup 3/H)quinuclidinyl benzilate to rat brain muscarinic receptors.

  10. Genetics of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: relevance to nicotine addiction

    PubMed Central

    Mineur, Yann S.; Picciotto, Marina R.

    2008-01-01

    Human twin studies have suggested that there is a substantial genetic component underlying nicotine dependence, ongoing smoking and ability to quit. Similarly, animal studies have identified a number of genes and gene products that are critical for behaviors related to nicotine addiction. Classical genetic approaches, gene association studies and genetic engineering techniques have been used to identify the gene products involved in nicotine dependence. One class of genes involved in nicotine-related behavior is the family of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). These receptors are the primary targets for nicotine in the brain. Genetic engineering studies in mice have identified a number of subunits that are critical for the ability of nicotine to activate the reward system in the brain, consisting of the dopaminergic cell bodies in the ventral tegmental area and their terminals in the nucleus accumbens and other portions of the mesolimbic system. In this review we will discuss the various lines of evidence suggesting that nAChRs may be involved in smoking behavior, and will review the human and animal studies that have been performed to date examining the genetic basis for nicotine dependence and smoking. PMID:17632086

  11. Crosslinking-Induced Endocytosis of Acetylcholine Receptors by Quantum Dots

    PubMed Central

    Geng, Lin; Peng, H. Benjamin

    2014-01-01

    In a majority of patients with myasthenia gravis (MG), anti-acetylcholine receptor (AChR) antibodies target postsynaptic AChR clusters and thus compromise the membrane integrity of neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) and lead to muscle weakness. Antibody-induced endocytosis of AChRs in the postsynaptic membrane represents the initial step in the pathogenesis of MG; however, the molecular mechanisms underlying AChR endocytosis remain largely unknown. Here, we developed an approach to mimic the pathogenic antibodies for inducing the crosslinking and internalization of AChRs from the postsynaptic membrane. Using biotin-α-bungarotoxin and quantum dot (QD)-streptavidin, cell-surface and internalized AChRs could be readily distinguished by comparing the size, fluorescence intensity, trajectory, and subcellular localization of the QD signals. QD-induced AChR endocytosis was mediated by clathrin-dependent and caveolin-independent mechanisms, and the trafficking of internalized AChRs in the early endosomes required the integrity of microtubule structures. Furthermore, activation of the agrin/MuSK (muscle-specific kinase) signaling pathway strongly suppressed QD-induced internalization of AChRs. Lastly, QD-induced AChR crosslinking potentiated the dispersal of aneural AChR clusters upon synaptic induction. Taken together, our results identify a novel approach to study the mechanisms of AChR trafficking upon receptor crosslinking and endocytosis, and demonstrate that agrin-MuSK signaling pathways protect against crosslinking-induced endocytosis of AChRs. PMID:24587270

  12. 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.

  13. 86Rb+ Efflux Mediated by α4β2*-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors with High and Low Sensitivity to Stimulation by Acetylcholine Display Similar Agonist-Induced Desensitization

    PubMed Central

    Marks, Michael J.; Meinerz, Natalie M.; Brown, Robert W. B.; Collins, Allan C.

    2010-01-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) assembled from α4 and β2 subunits are the most densely expressed subtype in the brain. Concentration-effect curves for agonist activation of α4β2*-nAChR are biphasic. This biphasic agonist sensitivity is ascribed to differences in subunit stoichiometry. The studies described here evaluated desensitization elicited by low concentrations of epibatidine, nicotine, cytisine or methylcarbachol of brain α4β2-nAChR function measured with acetylcholine stimulated 86Rb+ efflux from mouse thalamic synaptosomes. Each agonist elicited concentration-dependent desensitization. The agonists differed in potency. However, IC50 values for each agonist for desensitization of 86Rb+ efflux both with high (EC50≈3 μM) and low (EC50≈ 150 μM) acetylcholine sensitivity were not significantly different. Concentrations required to elicit desensitization were higher that their respective KD values for receptor binding. Even though the two components of α4β2*-nAChR mediated 86Rb+ efflux from mouse brain differ markedly in EC50 values for agonist activation, they are equally sensitive to desensitization by exposure to low agonist concentrations. Mice were also chronically treated with nicotine by continuous infusion of 0, 0.5 or 4.0 mg/kg/hr and desensitization induced by nicotine was evaluated. Consistent with previous results, chronic nicotine treatment increased the density of epibatidine binding sites. Acute exposure to nicotine also elicited concentration-dependent desensitization of both high sensitivity and low sensitivity acetylcholine-stimulated 86Rb+ efflux from cortical and thalamic synaptosomes. Although chronic nicotine treatment reduced maximal 86Rb+ efflux from thalamus, IC50 values in both brain regions were unaffected by chronic nicotine treatment. PMID:20599770

  14. R-spondin 2 promotes acetylcholine receptor clustering at the neuromuscular junction via Lgr5

    PubMed Central

    Nakashima, Hiroaki; Ohkawara, Bisei; Ishigaki, Shinsuke; Fukudome, Takayasu; Ito, Kenyu; Tsushima, Mikito; Konishi, Hiroyuki; Okuno, Tatsuya; Yoshimura, Toshiro; Ito, Mikako; Masuda, Akio; Sobue, Gen; Kiyama, Hiroshi; Ishiguro, Naoki; Ohno, Kinji

    2016-01-01

    At the neuromuscular junction (NMJ), acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clustering is mediated by spinal motor neuron (SMN)-derived agrin and its receptors on the muscle, the low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 4 (LRP4) and muscle-specific receptor tyrosine kinase (MuSK). Additionally, AChR clustering is mediated by the components of the Wnt pathway. Laser capture microdissection of SMNs revealed that a secreted activator of Wnt signaling, R-spondin 2 (Rspo2), is highly expressed in SMNs. We found that Rspo2 is enriched at the NMJ, and that Rspo2 induces MuSK phosphorylation and AChR clustering. Rspo2 requires Wnt ligands, but not agrin, for promoting AChR clustering in cultured myotubes. Leucine-rich repeat-containing G-protein coupled receptor 5 (Lgr5), an Rspo2 receptor, is also accumulated at the NMJ, and is associated with MuSK via LRP4. Lgr5 is required for Rspo2-mediated AChR clustering in myotubes. In Rspo2-knockout mice, the number and density of AChRs at the NMJ are reduced. The Rspo2-knockout diaphragm has an altered ultrastructure with widened synaptic clefts and sparse synaptic vesicles. Frequency of miniature endplate currents is markedly reduced in Rspo2-knockout mice. To conclude, we demonstrate that Rspo2 and its receptor Lgr5 are Wnt-dependent and agrin-independent regulators of AChR clustering at the NMJ. PMID:27328992

  15. R-spondin 2 promotes acetylcholine receptor clustering at the neuromuscular junction via Lgr5.

    PubMed

    Nakashima, Hiroaki; Ohkawara, Bisei; Ishigaki, Shinsuke; Fukudome, Takayasu; Ito, Kenyu; Tsushima, Mikito; Konishi, Hiroyuki; Okuno, Tatsuya; Yoshimura, Toshiro; Ito, Mikako; Masuda, Akio; Sobue, Gen; Kiyama, Hiroshi; Ishiguro, Naoki; Ohno, Kinji

    2016-01-01

    At the neuromuscular junction (NMJ), acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clustering is mediated by spinal motor neuron (SMN)-derived agrin and its receptors on the muscle, the low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 4 (LRP4) and muscle-specific receptor tyrosine kinase (MuSK). Additionally, AChR clustering is mediated by the components of the Wnt pathway. Laser capture microdissection of SMNs revealed that a secreted activator of Wnt signaling, R-spondin 2 (Rspo2), is highly expressed in SMNs. We found that Rspo2 is enriched at the NMJ, and that Rspo2 induces MuSK phosphorylation and AChR clustering. Rspo2 requires Wnt ligands, but not agrin, for promoting AChR clustering in cultured myotubes. Leucine-rich repeat-containing G-protein coupled receptor 5 (Lgr5), an Rspo2 receptor, is also accumulated at the NMJ, and is associated with MuSK via LRP4. Lgr5 is required for Rspo2-mediated AChR clustering in myotubes. In Rspo2-knockout mice, the number and density of AChRs at the NMJ are reduced. The Rspo2-knockout diaphragm has an altered ultrastructure with widened synaptic clefts and sparse synaptic vesicles. Frequency of miniature endplate currents is markedly reduced in Rspo2-knockout mice. To conclude, we demonstrate that Rspo2 and its receptor Lgr5 are Wnt-dependent and agrin-independent regulators of AChR clustering at the NMJ. PMID:27328992

  16. α7-Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: Role in Early Odor Learning Preference in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Hellier, Jennifer L.; Arevalo, Nicole L.; Smith, Lynelle; Xiong, Ka-Na; Restrepo, Diego

    2012-01-01

    Recently, we have shown that mice with decreased expression of α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7) in the olfactory bulb were associated with a deficit in odor discrimination compared to wild-type mice. However, it is unknown if mice with decreased α7-receptor expression also show a deficit in early odor learning preference (ELP), an enhanced behavioral response to odors with attractive value observed in rats. In this study, we modified ELP methods performed in rats and implemented similar conditions in mice. From post-natal days 5–18, wild-type mice were stroked simultaneously with an odor presentation (conditioned odor) for 90 s daily. Control mice were only stroked, exposed to odor, or neither. On the day of testing (P21), mice that were stroked in concert with a conditioned odor significantly investigated the conditioned odor compared to a novel odor, as observed similarly in rats. However, mice with a decrease in α7-receptor expression that were stroked during a conditioned odor did not show a behavioral response to that odorant. These results suggest that decreased α7-receptor expression has a role in associative learning, olfactory preference, and/or sensory processing deficits. PMID:22514723

  17. Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Modulators Reduce Sugar Intake.

    PubMed

    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

  18. 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

  19. Cocaine inhibition of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors influences dopamine release

    PubMed Central

    Acevedo-Rodriguez, Alexandra; Zhang, Lifen; Zhou, Fuwen; Gong, Suzhen; Gu, Howard; De Biasi, Mariella; Zhou, Fu-Ming; Dani, John A.

    2014-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) potently regulate dopamine (DA) release in the striatum and alter cocaine's ability to reinforce behaviors. Since cocaine is a weak nAChR inhibitor, we hypothesized that cocaine may alter DA release by inhibiting the nAChRs in DA terminals in the striatum and thus contribute to cocaine's reinforcing properties primarily associated with the inhibition of DA transporters. We found that biologically relevant concentrations of cocaine can mildly inhibit nAChR-mediated currents in midbrain DA neurons and consequently alter DA release in the dorsal and ventral striatum. At very high concentrations, cocaine also inhibits voltage-gated Na channels in DA neurons. Furthermore, our results show that partial inhibition of nAChRs by cocaine reduces evoked DA release. This diminution of DA release via nAChR inhibition more strongly influences release evoked at low or tonic stimulation frequencies than at higher (phasic) stimulation frequencies, particularly in the dorsolateral striatum. This cocaine-induced shift favoring phasic DA release may contribute to the enhanced saliency and motivational value of cocaine-associated memories and behaviors. PMID:25237305

  20. Cocaine inhibition of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors influences dopamine release.

    PubMed

    Acevedo-Rodriguez, Alexandra; Zhang, Lifen; Zhou, Fuwen; Gong, Suzhen; Gu, Howard; De Biasi, Mariella; Zhou, Fu-Ming; Dani, John A

    2014-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) potently regulate dopamine (DA) release in the striatum and alter cocaine's ability to reinforce behaviors. Since cocaine is a weak nAChR inhibitor, we hypothesized that cocaine may alter DA release by inhibiting the nAChRs in DA terminals in the striatum and thus contribute to cocaine's reinforcing properties primarily associated with the inhibition of DA transporters. We found that biologically relevant concentrations of cocaine can mildly inhibit nAChR-mediated currents in midbrain DA neurons and consequently alter DA release in the dorsal and ventral striatum. At very high concentrations, cocaine also inhibits voltage-gated Na channels in DA neurons. Furthermore, our results show that partial inhibition of nAChRs by cocaine reduces evoked DA release. This diminution of DA release via nAChR inhibition more strongly influences release evoked at low or tonic stimulation frequencies than at higher (phasic) stimulation frequencies, particularly in the dorsolateral striatum. This cocaine-induced shift favoring phasic DA release may contribute to the enhanced saliency and motivational value of cocaine-associated memories and behaviors. PMID:25237305

  1. Gating Movement of Acetylcholine Receptor Caught by Plunge-Freezing

    PubMed Central

    Unwin, Nigel; Fujiyoshi, Yoshinori

    2012-01-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptor converts transiently to an open-channel form when activated by ACh released into the synaptic cleft. We describe here the conformational change underlying this event, determined by electron microscopy of ACh-sprayed and freeze-trapped postsynaptic membranes. ACh binding to the α subunits triggers a concerted rearrangement in the ligand-binding domain, involving an ~ 1‐Å outward displacement of the extracellular portion of the β subunit where it interacts with the juxtaposed ends of α-helices shaping the narrow membrane-spanning pore. The β-subunit helices tilt outward to accommodate this displacement, destabilising the arrangement of pore-lining helices, which in the closed channel bend inward symmetrically to form a central hydrophobic gate. Straightening and tangential motion of the pore-lining helices effect channel opening by widening the pore asymmetrically and increasing its polarity in the region of the gate. The pore-lining helices of the αγ and δ subunits, by flexing between alternative bent and straight conformations, undergo the greatest movements. This coupled allosteric transition shifts the structure from a tense (closed) state toward a more relaxed (open) state. PMID:22841691

  2. Looking below the surface of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-01

    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 has a unique language for communication with its host cell. The conservation across species also suggests that the intracellular domains have 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.

  3. An unusual beta-spectrin associated with clustered acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    The clustering of acetylcholine receptors (AChR) in the postsynaptic membrane is an early event in the formation of the neuromuscular junction. The mechanism of clustering is still unknown, but is generally believed to be mediated by the postsynaptic cytoskeleton. We have identified an unusual isoform of beta-spectrin which colocalizes with AChR in AChR clusters isolated from rat myotubes in vitro. A related antigen is present postsynaptically at the neuromuscular junction of the rat. Immunoprecipitation, peptide mapping and immunofluorescence show that the beta-spectrin in AChR clusters resembles but is distinct from the beta-spectrin of human erythrocytes. alpha-Spectrin appears to be absent from AChR clusters. Semiquantitative immunofluorescence techniques indicate that there are from two to seven beta-spectrin molecules present for every clustered AChR, the higher values being obtained from rapidly prepared clusters, the lower values from clusters that require several minutes or more for isolation. Upon incubation of isolated AChR clusters for 1 h at room temperature, beta-spectrin is slowly depleted and the AChR redistribute into microaggregates. The beta-spectrin that remains associated with the myotube membrane is concentrated at these microaggregates. beta- Spectrin is quantitatively lost from clusters upon digestion with chymotrypsin, which causes AChR to redistribute in the plane of the membrane. These results suggest that AChR in clusters is closely linked to an unusual isoform of beta-spectrin. PMID:2645300

  4. Acetylcholine receptor and behavioral deficits in mice lacking apolipoprotein E

    PubMed Central

    Siegel, Jessica A; Benice, Theodore S; Van Meer, Peter; Park, Byung S; Raber, Jacob

    2011-01-01

    Apolipoprotein E (apoE) is involved in the risk to develop sporadic Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Since impaired central acetylcholine (ACh) function is a hallmark of AD, apoE may influence ACh function by modulating muscarinic ACh receptors (mAChRs). To test this hypothesis, mAChR binding was measured in mice lacking apoE and wild type C57BL/6J mice. Mice were also tested on the pre-pulse inhibition, delay eyeblink classical conditioning, and 5-choice serial reaction time tasks, which are all modulated by ACh transmission. Mice were also given scopolamine to challenge central mAChR function. Compared to wild type mice, mice lacking apoE had reduced number of cortical and hippocampal mAChRs. Scopolamine had a small effect on delay eyeblink classical conditioning in wild type mice but a large effect in mice lacking apoE. Mice lacking apoE were also unable to acquire performance on the 5-choice serial reaction time task. These results support a role for apoE in ACh function and suggest that modulation of cortical and hippocampal mAChRs might contribute to genotype differences in scopolamine sensitivity and task acquisition. Impaired apoE functioning may result in cholinergic deficits that contribute to the cognitive impairments seen in AD. PMID:19178986

  5. 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. PMID:26472558

  6. Functional interaction between Lypd6 and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-01

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

  7. Functional differences between neurotransmitter binding sites of muscle acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Nayak, Tapan K; Bruhova, Iva; Chakraborty, Srirupa; Gupta, Shaweta; Zheng, Wenjun; Auerbach, Anthony

    2014-12-01

    A muscle acetylcholine receptor (AChR) has two neurotransmitter binding sites located in the extracellular domain, at αδ and either αε (adult) or αγ (fetal) subunit interfaces. We used single-channel electrophysiology to measure the effects of mutations of five conserved aromatic residues at each site with regard to their contribution to the difference in free energy of agonist binding to active versus resting receptors (ΔGB1). The two binding sites behave independently in both adult and fetal AChRs. For four different agonists, including ACh and choline, ΔGB1 is ∼-2 kcal/mol more favorable at αγ compared with at αε and αδ. Only three of the aromatics contribute significantly to ΔGB1 at the adult sites (αY190, αY198, and αW149), but all five do so at αγ (as well as αY93 and γW55). γW55 makes a particularly large contribution only at αγ that is coupled energetically to those contributions of some of the α-subunit aromatics. The hydroxyl and benzene groups of loop C residues αY190 and αY198 behave similarly with regard to ΔGB1 at all three kinds of site. ACh binding energies estimated from molecular dynamics simulations are consistent with experimental values from electrophysiology and suggest that the αγ site is more compact, better organized, and less dynamic than αε and αδ. We speculate that the different sensitivities of the fetal αγ site versus the adult αε and αδ sites to choline and ACh are important for the proper maturation and function of the neuromuscular synapse. PMID:25422413

  8. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor modulation of mu (mu) opioid receptors in adult rat sphenopalatine ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Margas, Wojciech; Mahmoud, Saifeldin; Ruiz-Velasco, Victor

    2010-01-01

    The sphenopalatine ganglion (SPG) neurons represent the parasympathetic branch of the autonomic nervous system involved in controlling cerebral blood flow. In the present study, we examined the coupling mechanism between mu (mu) opioid receptors (MOR) and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChR) with Ca(2+) channels in acutely dissociated adult rat SPG neurons. Successful MOR activation was recorded in approximately 40-45% of SPG neurons employing the whole cell variant of the patch-clamp technique. In addition, immunofluorescence assays indicated that MOR are not expressed in all SPG neurons while M(2) mAChR staining was evident in all neurons. The concentration-response relationships generated with morphine and [d-Ala2-N-Me-Phe4-Glycol5]-enkephalin (DAMGO) showed IC(50) values of 15.2 and 56.1 nM and maximal Ca(2+) current inhibition of 26.0 and 38.7%, respectively. Activation of MOR or M(2) mAChR with morphine or oxotremorine-methiodide (Oxo-M), respectively, resulted in voltage-dependent inhibition of Ca(2+) currents via coupling with Galpha(i/o) protein subunits. The acute prolonged exposure (10 min) of neurons to morphine or Oxo-M led to the homologous desensitization of MOR and M(2) mAChR, respectively. The prolonged stimulation of M(2) mAChR with Oxo-M resulted in heterologous desensitization of morphine-mediated Ca(2+) current inhibition, and was sensitive to the M(2) mAChR blocker methoctramine. On the other hand, when the neurons were exposed to morphine or DAMGO for 10 min, heterologous desensitization of M(2) mAChR was not observed. These results suggest that in rat SPG neurons activation of M(2) mAChR likely modulates opioid transmission in the brain vasculature to adequately maintain cerebral blood flow. PMID:19889856

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-11-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-11-01

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

  12. Spatial and intracellular relationships between the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and the vesicular acetylcholine transporter in the prefrontal cortex of rat and mouse

    PubMed Central

    Duffy, Aine M.; Zhou, Ping; Milner, Teresa A.; Pickel, Virginia M.

    2009-01-01

    The alpha-7 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) is expressed in the prefrontal cortex (PFC), a brain region where these receptors are implicated in cognitive function and in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. Activation of this receptor is dependent on release of acetylcholine (ACh) from axon terminals that contain the vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT). Since rat and mouse models are widely used for studies of specific abnormalities in schizophrenia, we sought to determine the subcellular location of the α7nAChR with respect to VAChT storage vesicles in axon terminals in the PFC in both species. For this, we used dual electron microscopic immunogold and immunoperoxidase labeling of antisera raised against the α7nAChR and VAChT. In both species, the α7nAChR-immunoreactivity (-ir) was principally identified within dendrites and dendritic spines, receptive to axon terminals forming asymmetric excitatory-type synapses, but lacking detectable α7nAChR or VAChT-ir. Quantitative analysis of the rat PFC revealed that of α7nAChR labeled neuronal profiles, 65% (299/463) were postsynaptic structures (dendrites and dendritic spine) and only 22% (104/463) were axon terminals or small unmyelinated axons. In contrast, VAChT was principally localized to varicose vesicle-filled axonal profiles, without recognized synaptic specializations (n = 240). Of the α7nAChR-labeled axons, 47% (37/79) also contained VAChT, suggesting that ACh release is autoregulated through the presynaptic α7nAChR. The VAChT-labeled terminals rarely formed synapses, but frequently apposed α7nAChR-containing neuronal profiles. These results suggest that in rodent PFC, the α7nAChR plays a major role in modulation of the postsynaptic excitation in spiny dendrites in contact with VAChT containing axons. PMID:19374941

  13. Extrasynaptic Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors on Neuronal Cell Bodies Regulate Presynaptic Function in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Jason P.; Staab, Trisha A.; Wang, Han; Mazzasette, Chiara; Butte, Zara

    2013-01-01

    Acetylcholine (ACh) is a potent neuromodulator in the brain, and its effects on cognition and memory formation are largely performed through muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs). mAChRs are often preferentially distributed on specialized membrane regions in neurons, but the significance of mAChR localization in modulating neuronal function is not known. Here we show that the Caenorhabditis elegans homolog of the M1/M3/M5 family of mAChRs, gar-3, is expressed in cholinergic motor neurons, and GAR-3-GFP fusion proteins localize to cell bodies where they are enriched at extrasynaptic regions that are in contact with the basal lamina. The GAR-3 N-terminal extracellular domain is necessary and sufficient for this asymmetric distribution, and mutation of a predicted N-linked glycosylation site within the N-terminus disrupts GAR-3-GFP localization. In transgenic animals expressing GAR-3 variants that are no longer asymmetrically localized, synaptic transmission at neuromuscular junctions is impaired and there is a reduction in the abundance of the presynaptic protein sphingosine kinase at release sites. Finally, GAR-3 can be activated by endogenously produced ACh released from neurons that do not directly contact cholinergic motor neurons. Together, our results suggest that humoral activation of asymmetrically localized mAChRs by ACh is an evolutionarily conserved mechanism by which ACh modulates neuronal function. PMID:23986249

  14. A motif present in the main cytoplasmic loop of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and catalases.

    PubMed

    Morgado-Valle, C; García-Colunga, J; Miledi, R; Díaz-Muñoz, M

    2001-05-01

    A motif containing five conserved amino acids (RXPXTH(X)14P) was detected in 111 proteins, including 82 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits and 20 catalases. To explore possible functional roles of this motif in nAChRs two approaches were used: first, the motif sequences in nAChR subunits and catalases were analysed and compared; and, second, deletions in the rat alpha2 and beta4 nAChR subunits expressed in Xenopus oocytes were analysed. Compared to the three-dimensional structure of bovine hepatic catalase, structural coincidences were found in the motif of catalases and nAChRs. On the other hand, partial deletions of the motif in the alpha2 or beta4 subunits and injection of the mutants into oocytes was followed by a very weak expression of functional nAChRs; oocytes injected with alpha2 and beta4 subunits in which the entire motif had been deleted failed to elicit any acetylcholine currents. The results suggest that the motif may play a role in the activation of nAChRs. PMID:11370971

  15. Activation of the recombinant human alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor significantly raises intracellular free calcium.

    PubMed

    Delbono, O; Gopalakrishnan, M; Renganathan, M; Monteggia, L M; Messi, M L; Sullivan, J P

    1997-01-01

    The alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtype, unlike other neuronal nicotinic receptors, exhibits a relatively high permeability to Ca++ ions. Although Ca++ entry through this receptor subtype has been implicated in various Ca(++)-dependent processes in the central nervous system, little is known about how this receptor modulates mammalian intracellular Ca++ dynamics. Intracellular Ca++ responses evoked by activation of the human alpha 7 nAChRs stably expressed in HEK-293 (human embryonic kidney) cells were studied. Inward current and intracellular Ca++ transients were recorded simultaneously in response to a fast drug application system. Current recordings under whole-cell voltage-clamp and fast ratiometric intracellular Ca++ imaging acquisition were synchronized to drug pulses. The mean peak [Ca++]i observed with 100 microM (-)-nicotine was 356 +/- 48 nM (n = 8). The magnitude of the intracellular Ca++ elevation corresponds to a 20% fractional current carried by Ca++ ions. The EC50 of the intracellular Ca++ responses for (-)-nicotine, (+/-)-epibatidine, 1,1 dimethyl-4-phenyl-piperazinium and acetylcholine were 51, 3.5, 75 and 108 microM, respectively. These EC50 values strongly correlate with those recorded for the cationic inward current through alpha 7 nAChR. alpha-Bungarotoxin, methyllcaconitine or extracellular Ca++ chelation ablated (-)-nicotine-evoked increase in intracellular Ca++ concentration. This study provides evidence that cation influx through the human alpha 7 nAChR is sufficient to mediate a significant, transient, rise in intracellular Ca++ concentration.

  16. Nicotine is a selective pharmacological chaperone of acetylcholine receptor number and stoichiometry. Implications for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Lester, Henry A; Xiao, Cheng; Srinivasan, Rahul; Son, Cagdas D; Miwa, Julie; Pantoja, Rigo; Banghart, Matthew R; Dougherty, Dennis A; Goate, Alison M; Wang, Jen C

    2009-03-01

    The acronym SePhaChARNS, for "selective pharmacological chaperoning of acetylcholine receptor number and stoichiometry," is introduced. We hypothesize that SePhaChARNS underlies classical observations that chronic exposure to nicotine causes "upregulation" of nicotinic receptors (nAChRs). If the hypothesis is proven, (1) SePhaChARNS is the molecular mechanism of the first step in neuroadaptation to chronic nicotine; and (2) nicotine addiction is partially a disease of excessive chaperoning. The chaperone is a pharmacological one, nicotine; and the chaperoned molecules are alpha4beta2* nAChRs. SePhaChARNS may also underlie two inadvertent therapeutic effects of tobacco use: (1) the inverse correlation between tobacco use and Parkinson's disease; and (2) the suppression of seizures by nicotine in autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy. SePhaChARNS arises from the thermodynamics of pharmacological chaperoning: ligand binding, especially at subunit interfaces, stabilizes AChRs during assembly and maturation, and this stabilization is most pronounced for the highest-affinity subunit compositions, stoichiometries, and functional states of receptors. Several chemical and pharmacokinetic characteristics render exogenous nicotine a more potent pharmacological chaperone than endogenous acetylcholine. SePhaChARNS is modified by desensitized states of nAChRs, by acid trapping of nicotine in organelles, and by other aspects of proteostasis. SePhaChARNS is selective at the cellular, and possibly subcellular, levels because of variations in the detailed nAChR subunit composition, as well as in expression of auxiliary proteins such as lynx. One important implication of the SePhaChARNS hypothesis is that therapeutically relevant nicotinic receptor drugs could be discovered by studying events in intracellular compartments rather than exclusively at the surface membrane.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

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

    PubMed Central

    Dani, John A.

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:26472524

  20. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-11-01

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

  2. (/sup 14/C)chloroacetylcholine as an advantageous affinity label of the acetylcholine receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Bodmer, D.M.; Sin-Ren, A.C.; Waser, P.G.

    1987-01-01

    The alkylating agent (/sup 14/C)chloroacetylcholine perchlorate ((/sup 14/C) ClACh) was synthesized and used for affinity labelling of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo marmorata. Solubilized and affinity-purified receptor proteins were reduced and alkylated according to the bromoacetylcholine-method. Covalent binding of (/sup 14/C) ClACh to the cholinergic receptor proved to be specific and saturable, and occurred exclusively to the alpha-subunit. Halogen substitution of acetylcholine by chlorine and insertion of a /sup 14/C-isotope instead of the widely used /sup 3/H resulted in favorable properties of the affinity label.

  3. Role for M5 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in cocaine addiction.

    PubMed

    Fink-Jensen, Anders; Fedorova, Irina; Wörtwein, Gitta; Woldbye, David P D; Rasmussen, Thøger; Thomsen, Morgane; Bolwig, Tom G; Knitowski, Karen M; McKinzie, David L; Yamada, Masahisa; Wess, Jürgen; Basile, Anthony

    2003-10-01

    Muscarinic cholinergic receptors of the M5 subtype are expressed by dopamine-containing neurons of the ventral tegmentum. These M5 receptors modulate the activity of midbrain dopaminergic neurons, which play an important role in mediating reinforcing properties of abused psychostimulants like cocaine. The potential role of M5 receptors in the reinforcing effects of cocaine was investigated using M5 receptor-deficient mice in a model of acute cocaine self-administration. The M5-deficient mice self-administered cocaine at a significantly lower rate than wild-type controls. In the conditioned place preference procedure, a classic test for evaluating the rewarding properties of drugs, M5-deficient mice spent significantly less time in the cocaine-paired compartment than control mice. Moreover, the severity of the cocaine withdrawal syndrome (withdrawal-associated anxiety measured in the elevated plus-maze) was significantly attenuated in mice lacking the M5 receptor. These results demonstrate that M5 receptors play an important role in mediating both cocaine-associated reinforcement and withdrawal.

  4. 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.

  5. α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit in angiogenesis and epithelial to mesenchymal transition.

    PubMed

    Pillai, Smitha; Chellappan, Srikumar

    2012-05-01

    Cigarette smoking is strongly correlated with many diseases like cancer, cardiovascular disease and macular degeneration. Nicotine, the main active and addictive component of tobacco smoke has recently been shown to enhance angiogenesis in many experimental systems and animal models. The pro-angiogenic activity of nicotine is mediated by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, particularly the alpha 7 subunit, that are expressed on a variety of non-neuronal cells including those in the vasculature such as endothelial cells and smooth muscle cells. The present review focuses on the role of α7nAChR in mediating the pro-angiogenic effects of nicotine and describes the molecular mechanisms involved in nicotine-induced angiogenesis as well as epithelial to mesenchymal transition. These observations on nicotine function highlight the therapeutic potential of α7nAChR agonists and antagonists for combating angiogenesis related diseases.

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-09-01

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

  7. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-08-01

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

  9. Escherichia coli Protein Expression System for Acetylcholine Binding Proteins (AChBPs)

    PubMed Central

    Abraham, Nikita; Paul, Blessy; Ragnarsson, Lotten; Lewis, Richard J.

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) are ligand gated ion channels, identified as therapeutic targets for a range of human diseases. Drug design for nAChR related disorders is increasingly using structure-based approaches. Many of these structural insights for therapeutic lead development have been obtained from co-crystal structures of nAChR agonists and antagonists with the acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP). AChBP is a water soluble, structural and functional homolog of the extracellular, ligand-binding domain of nAChRs. Currently, AChBPs are recombinantly expressed in eukaryotic expression systems for structural and biophysical studies. Here, we report the establishment of an Escherichia coli (E. coli) expression system that significantly reduces the cost and time of production compared to the existing expression systems. E. coli can efficiently express unglycosylated AChBP for crystallography and makes the expression of isotopically labelled forms feasible for NMR. We used a pHUE vector containing an N-terminal His-tagged ubiquitin fusion protein to facilitate AChBP expression in the soluble fractions, and thus avoid the need to recover protein from inclusion bodies. The purified protein yield obtained from the E. coli expression system is comparable to that obtained from existing AChBP expression systems. E. coli expressed AChBP bound nAChR agonists and antagonists with affinities matching those previously reported. Thus, the E. coli expression system significantly simplifies the expression and purification of functional AChBP for structural and biophysical studies. PMID:27304486

  10. Monoclonal antibodies against the native or denatured forms of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed Central

    André, C; Guillet, J G; De Backer, J P; Vanderheyden, P; Hoebeke, J; Strosberg, A D

    1984-01-01

    BALB/c mice were immunized with affinity-purified muscarinic acetylcholine receptors from calf brain and their splenocytes fused with NS1 myeloma cells. Hybrid cultures were grown and selected for production of antibodies on the basis of enzyme immunoassays on calf and rat forebrain membrane preparations. Thirty-four clones were retained and six of them further subcloned. Two of these subclones produced antibodies that selectively recognized muscarinic acetylcholine receptor-bearing membranes. The M-35b antibodies interacted only with native digitonin-solubilized receptors, and not with denatured receptors. The M-23c antibodies did not react with active digitonin-solubilized receptors but recognized the denatured form. The M-23c antibodies should thus be useful in the purification of the receptor and its precursor translation products, while the M-35b antibodies could be used for the immunocytochemical localization of the receptor in cells and tissues of different species. Images Fig. 2. Fig. 3. PMID:6200320

  11. 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.

  12. Identification of a molecular weight 43,000 protein kinase in acetylcholine receptor-enriched membranes.

    PubMed Central

    Gordon, A S; Milfay, D; Diamond, I

    1983-01-01

    A photoaffinity ATP ligand is used to identify the protein kinase present in acetylcholine receptor-enriched membranes from Torpedo californica. Incubation of these membranes with 8-azido-[alpha-32P]ATP and subsequent irradiation with UV light resulted in covalent labeling of a major band of Mr 43,000. Alkali-stripped membranes that show a selective reduction in the Mr 43,000 polypeptide also show a corresponding reduction in incorporation of photoaffinity label. In addition, the neutralized alkaline extract also showed one band at Mr 43,000 when labeled with the photoaffinity ligand. After alkali extraction, endogenous protein kinase activity decreased in the membranes in proportion to the loss of Mr 43,000 peptide. Moreover, the alkaline extract was able to phosphorylate casein in an exogenous assay system. These results suggest that a Mr 43,000 polypeptide in acetylcholine receptor-enriched membranes is the acetylcholine receptor kinase. Images PMID:6577458

  13. ACR-12 ionotropic acetylcholine receptor complexes regulate inhibitory motor neuron activity in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Petrash, Hilary A; Philbrook, Alison; Haburcak, Marian; Barbagallo, Belinda; Francis, Michael M

    2013-03-27

    Heterogeneity in the composition of neurotransmitter receptors is thought to provide functional diversity that may be important in patterning neural activity and shaping behavior (Dani and Bertrand, 2007; Sassoè-Pognetto, 2011). However, this idea has remained difficult to evaluate directly because of the complexity of neuronal connectivity patterns and uncertainty about the molecular composition of specific receptor types in vivo. Here we dissect how molecular diversity across receptor types contributes to the coordinated activity of excitatory and inhibitory motor neurons in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. We show that excitatory and inhibitory motor neurons express distinct populations of ionotropic acetylcholine receptors (iAChRs) requiring the ACR-12 subunit. The activity level of excitatory motor neurons is influenced through activation of nonsynaptic iAChRs (Jospin et al., 2009; Barbagallo et al., 2010). In contrast, synaptic coupling of excitatory and inhibitory motor neurons is achieved through a second population of iAChRs specifically localized at postsynaptic sites on inhibitory motor neurons. Loss of ACR-12 iAChRs from inhibitory motor neurons leads to reduced synaptic drive, decreased inhibitory neuromuscular signaling, and variability in the sinusoidal motor pattern. Our results provide new insights into mechanisms that establish appropriately balanced excitation and inhibition in the generation of a rhythmic motor behavior and reveal functionally diverse roles for iAChR-mediated signaling in this process. PMID:23536067

  14. Identification and Characterization of a G Protein-binding Cluster in α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors*

    PubMed Central

    King, Justin R.; Nordman, Jacob C.; Bridges, Samuel P.; Lin, Ming-Kuan; Kabbani, Nadine

    2015-01-01

    α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) play an important role in synaptic transmission and inflammation. In response to ligands, this receptor channel opens to conduct cations into the cell but desensitizes rapidly. In recent studies we show that α7 nAChRs bind signaling proteins such as heterotrimeric GTP-binding proteins (G proteins). Here, we demonstrate that direct coupling of α7 nAChRs to G proteins enables a downstream calcium signaling response that can persist beyond the expected time course of channel activation. This process depends on a G protein-binding cluster (GPBC) in the M3-M4 loop of the receptor. A mutation of the GPBC in the α7 nAChR (α7345–348A) abolishes interaction with Gαq as well as Gβγ while having no effect on receptor synthesis, cell-surface trafficking, or α-bungarotoxin binding. Expression of α7345–348A, however, did significantly attenuate the α7 nAChR-induced Gαq calcium signaling response as evidenced by a decrease in PLC-β activation and IP3R-mediated calcium store release in the presence of the α7 selective agonist choline. Taken together, the data provides new evidence for the existence of a GPBC in nAChRs serving to promote intracellular signaling. PMID:26088141

  15. Effect of tissue-specific acetylcholinesterase inhibitor C-547 on α3β4 and αβεδ acetylcholine receptors in COS cells.

    PubMed

    Lindovský, Jiří; Petrov, Konstantin; Krůšek, Jan; Reznik, Vladimir S; Nikolsky, Eugeny E; Vyskočil, František

    2012-08-01

    The C-547 is the most effective muscle and tissue-specific anticholinesterase among alkylammonium derivatives of 6-methyluracil (ADEMS) acting in nanomolar concentrations on locomotor muscles but not on respiratory muscles, smooth muscles and heart and brain acetylcholine esterases (AChE). When applied systematically it could influence peripheral acetylcholine receptors. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of C-547 on rat α3β4 (ganglionic type) and αβεδ (muscle type) nicotinic receptors expressed in COS cells. Currents evoked by rapid application of acetylcholine or nicotine were recorded in whole-cell mode by electrophysiological patch-clamp technique 2-4 days after cell transfection by plasmids coding the α3β4 or αβεδ combination of receptor subunits. In cells sensitive to acetylcholine, the application of C-547 evoked no responses. When acetylcholine was applied during an already running application of C-547, acetylcholine responses were only inhibited at concentrations higher than 10(-7)M. This inhibition is not voltage-dependent, but is accompanied by an increased rate of desensitization. Thus in both types of receptors, effective doses are approximately 100 times higher than those inhibiting AChE in leg muscles and similar to those inhibiting respiratory diaphragm muscles and external intercostal muscles. These observations show that C-547 can be considered for symptomatic treatment of myasthenia gravis and other congenital myasthenic syndromes as an inhibitor of AChE in leg muscles at concentrations much lower than those inhibiting muscle and ganglion types of acetylcholine receptors.

  16. 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. PMID:25951893

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2006-01-01

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

  18. 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.

  19. Comparative study of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors of human and rat cortical glial cells

    SciTech Connect

    Demushkin, V.P.; Burbaeva, G.S.; Dzhaliashvili, T.A.; Plyashkevich, Y.G.

    1985-04-01

    The aim of the present investigation was a comparative studyof muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in human and rat glial cells. (/sup 3/H)Quinuclidinyl-benzylate ((/sup 3/H)-QB), atropine, platiphylline, decamethonium, carbamylcholine, tubocurarine, and nicotine were used. The glial cell fraction was obtained from the cerebral cortex of rats weighing 130-140 g and from the frontal pole of the postmortem brain from men aged 60-70 years. The use of the method of radioimmune binding of (/sup 3/H)-QB with human and rat glial cell membranes demonstrated the presence of a muscarinic acetylcholine receptor in the glial cells.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. Natural genetic variability of the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit genes in mice: Consequences and confounds.

    PubMed

    Wilking, Jennifer A; Stitzel, Jerry A

    2015-09-01

    Recent human genetic studies have identified genetic variants in multiple nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit genes that are associated with risk for nicotine dependence and other smoking-related measures. Genetic variability also exists in the nAChR subunit genes in mice. Most studies on mouse nAChR subunit gene variability to date have focused on Chrna4, the gene that encodes the α4 nAChR subunit and Chrna7, the gene that encodes the α7 nAChR subunit. However, genetic variability exists for all nAChR genes in mice. In this review, we will describe what is known about nAChR subunit gene polymorphisms in mice and how it relates to variability in nAChR expression and function in brain. The relationship between nAChR genetic variability in mice and the effects of nicotine on several behavioral and physiological measures also will be discussed. In addition, an overview of the contribution of other genetic variation to nicotine sensitivity in mice will be provided. Finally, the potential for natural genetic variability to confound and/or modify the results of studies that utilize genetically engineered mice will be considered. As an example of the ability of a natural genetic variant to modify the effect of an engineered mutation, data will be presented that demonstrate that the effect of Chrna5 deletion on oral nicotine intake is dependent upon naturally occurring variant alleles of Chrna4. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'The Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: From Molecular Biology to Cognition'. PMID:25498233

  4. Chemical modification and reactivity of sulfhydryls and disulfides of rat brain nicotinic-like acetylcholine receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Lukas, R.J.; Bennett, E.L.

    1980-06-25

    Rat central nervous system binding sites for ..cap alpha..-bungarotoxin display considerable biochemical homology with characterized nicotinic acetylcholine receptors from the periphery. They possess a critical disulfide residue(s), which is susceptible to chemical modification and consequent specific alteration in the affinity of the binding site for cholinergic agonists. After reaction with Na/sub 2/S/sub 2/O/sub 5/, as with reaction with dithiothreitol and 5,5'-dithiobis(2-nitrobenzoic acid), the binding site is frozen in a high affinity state toward acetylcholine. After reduction with dithiothreitol and alkylation with a variety of compounds of different molecular configuration or electrical charge, or both, the binding site is frozen in a low affinity state toward acetylcholine. Thus, effects of disulfide/sulfhydryl modification on agonist binding affinity appear to be attributable to the nature of the covalent modification rather than charge or steric alteration at the receptor active site brought about by chemical modification.

  5. Functional Human α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor (nAChR) Generated from Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Tillman, Tommy S; Alvarez, Frances J D; Reinert, Nathan J; Liu, Chuang; Wang, Dawei; Xu, Yan; Xiao, Kunhong; Zhang, Peijun; Tang, Pei

    2016-08-26

    Human Cys-loop receptors are important therapeutic targets. High-resolution structures are essential for rational drug design, but only a few are available due to difficulties in obtaining sufficient quantities of protein suitable for structural studies. Although expression of proteins in E. coli offers advantages of high yield, low cost, and fast turnover, this approach has not been thoroughly explored for full-length human Cys-loop receptors because of the conventional wisdom that E. coli lacks the specific chaperones and post-translational modifications potentially required for expression of human Cys-loop receptors. Here we report the successful production of full-length wild type human α7nAChR from E. coli Chemically induced chaperones promote high expression levels of well-folded proteins. The choice of detergents, lipids, and ligands during purification determines the final protein quality. The purified α7nAChR not only forms pentamers as imaged by negative-stain electron microscopy, but also retains pharmacological characteristics of native α7nAChR, including binding to bungarotoxin and positive allosteric modulators specific to α7nAChR. Moreover, the purified α7nAChR injected into Xenopus oocytes can be activated by acetylcholine, choline, and nicotine, inhibited by the channel blockers QX-222 and phencyclidine, and potentiated by the α7nAChR specific modulators PNU-120596 and TQS. The successful generation of functional human α7nAChR from E. coli opens a new avenue for producing mammalian Cys-loop receptors to facilitate structure-based rational drug design. PMID:27385587

  6. 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

  7. Cholinergic ligand interactions with acetylcholine receptor proteins and solvent interactions with N,N-dialkylnicotinamides

    SciTech Connect

    Bean, J.W.

    1987-01-01

    A dual-chambered flow dialysis nuclear counting apparatus was used to monitor cholinergic ligand induced displacement of {sup 155}Eu{sup 3+} from acetylcholine receptor proteins. Acetylcholine, nicotine and carbamylcholine induced similar rates of displacement of {sup 155}Eu{sup 3+} probes of calcium binding sites in receptor proteins from wild type Drosophila melanogaster and Torpedo californica. The receptor isolated from a nicotine resistant strain of Drosophila melanogaster displayed an altered dependency of cholinergic ligand induced cation displacement with respect to the other two receptor proteins. Both Drosophila strains' solubilized receptor proteins migrated as three bands of molecular weights 68,000, 66,000, and 60,000 on denaturing polyacrylamide gels. Carbon-13 NMR techniques were employed to examine the effects of solvent environment on rotational energy barriers in a series of molecules related to the analeptic, nikethamide: N,N-dimethylnicotinamide, 1-nicotinoyl piperidine, and N,N-dipropylnicotinamide.

  8. Agonist self-inhibition at the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor a nonspecific action

    SciTech Connect

    Forman, S.A.; Firestone, L.L.; Miller, K.W.

    1987-05-19

    Agonist concentration-response relationships at nicotinic postsynaptic receptors were established by measuring /sup 86/Rb/sup +/ efflux from acetylcholine receptor rich native Torpedo membrane vesicles under three different conditions: (1) integrated net ion efflux (in 10 s) from untreated vesicles, (2) integrated net efflux from vesicles in which most acetylcholine sites were irreversibly blocked with ..cap alpha..-bungarotoxin, and (3) initial rates of efflux (5-100 ms) from vesicles that were partially blocked with ..cap alpha..-bungarotoxin. Exposure to acetylcholine, carbamylcholine, suberyldicholine, phenyltrimethylammonium, or (-)-nicotine over 10/sup 8/-fold concentration ranges results in bell-shaped ion flux response curves due to stimulation of acetylcholine receptor channel opening at low concentrations and inhibition of channel function at 60-2000 times higher concentrations. Concentrations of agonists that inhibit their own maximum /sup 86/Rb/sup +/ efflux by 50% (K/sub B/ values) are 110, 211, 3.0, 39, and 8.9 mM, respectively, for the agonists listed above. For acetylcholine and carbamylcholine, K/sub B/ values determined from both 10-s and 15-ms efflux measurements are the same, indicating that the rate of agonist-induced desensitization increases to maximum at concentrations lower than those causing self-inhibition. For all partial and full agonists studied, Hill coefficients for self-inhibition are close to 1.0. Concentrations of agonists up to 8 times K/sub B/ did not change the order parameter reported by a spin-labeled fatty acid incorporated in Torpedo membranes. The authors conclude that agonist self-inhibition cannot be attributed to a general nonspecific membrane perturbation. Instead, these results are consistent with a saturable site of action either at the lipid-protein interface or on the acetylcholine receptor protein itself.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  13. 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

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

    PubMed

    Lombardo, Sylvia; Maskos, Uwe

    2015-09-01

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

  15. Structure, oligosaccharide structures, and posttranslationally modified sites of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Poulter, L; Earnest, J P; Stroud, R M; Burlingame, A L

    1989-01-01

    Using mass spectrometry, we have examined the transmembrane topography of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, a five-subunit glycosylated protein complex that forms a gated ion channel in the neuromuscular junction. The primary sequences of the four polypeptide chains making up the acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo californica contain many possible sites for glycosylation or phosphorylation. We have used liquid secondary ion mass spectrometry to identify posttranslationally modified residues and to determine the intact oligosaccharide structures of the carbohydrate present on the acetylcholine receptor. Asparagine-143 of the alpha subunit (in consensus numbering) is shown to be glycosylated with high-mannose oligosaccharide. Asparagine-453 of the gamma subunit is not glycosylated, a fact that bears on the question of the orientations of putative transmembranous helices M3, MA, and M4. The structures of the six major acetylcholine receptor oligosaccharides are determined: the major components (70%) are of the high-mannose type, with bi-, tri-, and tetraantennary complex oligosaccharides making up approximately equal to 22 mol% of the total carbohydrate. This application of a multichannel array detector mass spectrometer provided a breakthrough in sensitivity that allowed us to identify the site of attachment of, and the sequence of, oligosaccharides on a 300-kDa membrane protein from only 5 pmol of the isolated oligosaccharide. Images PMID:2771948

  16. 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...

  17. 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...

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-01

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

  19. 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.

  20. 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).

  1. Measuring relative acetylcholine receptor agonist binding by selective proton nuclear magnetic resonance relaxation experiments.

    PubMed Central

    Behling, R W; Yamane, T; Navon, G; Sammon, M J; Jelinski, L W

    1988-01-01

    A method is presented that uses selective proton Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) relaxation measurements of nicotine in the presence of the acetylcholine receptor to obtain relative binding constants for acetylcholine, carbamylcholine, and muscarine. For receptors from Torpedo californica the results show that (a) the binding constants are in the order acetylcholine greater than nicotine greater than carbamylcholine greater than muscarine; (b) selective NMR measurements provide a rapid and direct method for monitoring both the specific and nonspecific binding of agonists to these receptors and to the lipid; (c) alpha-bungarotoxin can be used to distinguish between specific and nonspecific binding to the receptor; (d) the receptor--substrate interaction causes a large change in the selective relaxation time of the agonists even at concentrations 100x greater than that of the receptor. This last observation means that these measurements provide a rapid method to monitor drug binding when only small amounts of receptor are available. Furthermore, the binding strategies presented here may be useful for the NMR determination of the conformation of the ligand in its bound state. Images FIGURE 1 PMID:3395661

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  6. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-29

    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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Thinking in cycles: MWC is a good model for acetylcholine receptor-channels

    PubMed Central

    Auerbach, Anthony

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Neuromuscular acetylcholine receptors have long been a model system for understanding the mechanisms of operation of ligand-gated ion channels and fast chemical synapses. These five subunit membrane proteins have two allosteric (transmitter) binding sites and a distant ion channel domain. Occupation of the binding sites by agonist molecules transiently increases the probability that the channel is ion-permeable. Recent experiments show that the Monod, Wyman and Changeux formalism for allosteric proteins, originally developed for haemoglobin, is an excellent model for acetylcholine receptors. By using mutations and single-channel electrophysiology, the gating equilibrium constants for receptors with zero, one or two bound agonist molecules, and the agonist association and dissociation rate constants from both the closed- and open-channel conformations, have been estimated experimentally. The change in affinity for each transmitter molecule between closed and open conformations provides ∼–5.1 kcal mol−1 towards the global gating isomerization of the protein. PMID:21807612

  11. Non-surgically-induced disuse muscle atrophy and neuromuscular dysfunction upregulates alpha7 acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Mohammed A. S.; Sahani, Nita; Neville, Kevin A.; Nagashima, Michio; Lee, Sangseok; Tomoki Sasakawa Masao, Kaneki; Martyn, J. A. Jeevendra

    2014-01-01

    Previous models of disuse have invariably used surgical methods require repetitive plaster casts applications. A method of disuse atrophy that does not require repetitive application is described. A modified plastic pipette tubing was applied to one hindlimb from thigh to foot resulting in immobilization of knee in extension and ankle in plantar flexion position. This method resulted in loss of soleus muscle mass to 11, 22, 39, and 45% at 3, 7, 14 and 21 days, respectively, in association with a significant decrease of tibialis twitch (25%) and tetanic tensions (26%) at 21 days, compared to contralateral side and/or sham immobilized controls. Immunohistochemical analysis of soleus using fluorescent α-bungarotoxin revealed a significant increase in the number of synapses per unit area (818+31 vs 433+16/mm2) and increase in muscle fibers per unit area (117 vs 83/mm2) most likely related to atrophy of muscle fibers bringing synapses closer. A three fold increase in alpha7 acetylcholine receptor (α7AChR) protein expression along with increased expression of α1AChR subunit on immobilized vs contralateral side was observed. The physiology and pharmacology of the novel finding of upregulation of α7AChRs with disuse requires further study. PMID:24383867

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M1 and M3 subtypes mediate acetylcholine-induced endothelium-independent vasodilatation in rat mesenteric arteries.

    PubMed

    Tangsucharit, Panot; Takatori, Shingo; Zamami, Yoshito; Goda, Mitsuhiro; Pakdeechote, Poungrat; Kawasaki, Hiromu; Takayama, Fusako

    2016-01-01

    The present study investigated pharmacological characterizations of muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) subtypes involving ACh-induced endothelium-independent vasodilatation in rat mesenteric arteries. Changes in perfusion pressure to periarterial nerve stimulation and ACh were measured before and after the perfusion of Krebs solution containing muscarinic receptor antagonists. Distributions of muscarinic AChR subtypes in mesenteric arteries with an intact endothelium were studied using Western blotting. The expression level of M1 and M3 was significantly greater than that of M2. Endothelium removal significantly decreased expression levels of M2 and M3, but not M1. In perfused mesenteric vascular beds with intact endothelium and active tone, exogenous ACh (1, 10, and 100 nmol) produced concentration-dependent and long-lasting vasodilatations. In endothelium-denuded preparations, relaxation to ACh (1 nmol) disappeared, but ACh at 10 and 100 nmol caused long-lasting vasodilatations, which were markedly blocked by the treatment of pirenzepine (M1 antagonist) or 4-DAMP (M1 and M3 antagonist) plus hexamethonium (nicotinic AChR antagonist), but not methoctramine (M2 and M4 antagonist). These results suggest that muscarinic AChR subtypes, mainly M1, distribute throughout the rat mesenteric arteries, and that activation of M1 and/or M3 which may be located on CGRPergic nerves releases CGRP, causing an endothelium-independent vasodilatation.

  15. Crystal structures of the M1 and M4 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    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

    2016-03-17

    Muscarinic M1-M5 acetylcholine receptors are G-protein-coupled receptors 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 crystal structures of the M1 and M4 muscarinic receptors bound to the inverse agonist, tiotropium. Comparison of these structures with each other, as well as with 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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  17. Targeting brain α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in Alzheimer's disease: rationale and current status.

    PubMed

    Vallés, Ana Sofía; Borroni, María Virginia; Barrantes, Francisco J

    2014-11-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia among older persons. Pathognomonic hallmarks of the disease include the development of amyloid senile plaques and deposits of neurofibrillary tangles. These changes occur in the brain long before the clinical manifestations of AD (cognitive impairment in particular) become apparent. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs), particularly the α7 subtype, are highly expressed in brain regions relevant to cognitive and memory functions and involved in the processing of sensory information. There is strong evidence that implicates the participation of AChRs in AD. This review briefly introduces current strategies addressing the pathophysiologic findings (amyloid-β-peptide plaques, neurofibrillary tangles) and then focuses on more recent efforts of pharmacologic intervention in AD, specifically targeted to the α7 AChR. Whereas cholinesterase inhibitors such as donepezil, galantamine, or rivastigmine, together with the non-competitive N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist memantine are at the forefront of present-day clinical intervention for AD, new insights into AChR molecular pharmacology are bringing other drugs, directed at AChRs, to center stage. Among these are the positive allosteric modulators that selectively target α7 AChRs and are aimed at unleashing the factors that hinder agonist-mediated, α7 AChR channel activation. This calls for more detailed knowledge of the distribution, functional properties, and involvement of AChRs in various signaling cascades-together with the corresponding abnormalities in all these properties-to be able to engineer strategies in drug design and evaluate the therapeutic possibilities of new compounds targeting this class of neurotransmitter receptors. PMID:25248971

  18. Turnover of acetylcholine receptors: Mechanisms of regulation. Final report, 1 August 1985-30 November 1990

    SciTech Connect

    Drachman, D.B.

    1990-12-31

    The synthesis, insertion and degradation of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) of skeletal muscle cells as closely regulated both by the muscle cells and by the motor nerves that supply them. The goal of this project is to elucidate the mechanisms of regulation of the AChRs, both at the neuromuscular junctional and at extrajunctional regions. The results of our studies on junctional AChRs have shown that: Both stable and rapidly turned over (RTO) AChRs are present at normally innervated neuromuscular junctions` Synthesis and insertion of AChRs at neuromuscular junctions occurs rapidly, at a rate consistent with the rapid rate of turnover of RTOs. RTOs serve as precursors of stable AChRs. Acetylcholine receptors, RA5 Neuromuscular junctions, Motor nerves.

  19. Anomalous interaction of the acetylcholine receptor protein with the nonionic detergent Triton X-114.

    PubMed

    Maher, P A; Singer, S J

    1985-02-01

    Integral membrane proteins that form water-filled channels through membranes often exist as aggregates of similar or identical subunits spanning the membrane. It has been suggested that the insertion into the membrane of the channel-forming domains of the subunits may impart unusual structural features to the membrane-intercalated portions of the protein. To test this proposal, we have investigated the interaction of a multisubunit channel-forming integral membrane protein, the acetylcholine receptor protein, with the nonionic detergent Triton X-114. Whereas non-channel-forming integral membrane proteins that have heretofore been studied form mixed micelles with the detergent, the acetylcholine receptor was excluded from the Triton X-114 micelles. The structural implications of this result are discussed.

  20. Anomalous Interaction of the Acetylcholine Receptor Protein with the Nonionic Detergent Triton X-114

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maher, Pamela A.; Singer, S. J.

    1985-02-01

    Integral membrane proteins that form water-filled channels through membranes often exist as aggregates of similar or identical subunits spanning the membrane. It has been suggested that the insertion into the membrane of the channel-forming domains of the subunits may impart unusual structural features to the membrane-intercalated portions of the protein. To test this proposal, we have investigated the interaction of a multisubunit channel-forming integral membrane protein, the acetylcholine receptor protein, with the nonionic detergent Triton X-114. Whereas non-channel-forming integral membrane proteins that have heretofore been studied from mixed micelles with the detergent, the acetylcholine receptor was excluded from the Triton X-114 micelles. The structural implications of this result are discussed.

  1. Nicotine activates and up-regulates nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in bronchial epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Fu, Xiao Wen; Lindstrom, Jon; Spindel, Eliot R

    2009-07-01

    Prenatal nicotine exposure impairs normal lung development and leads to diminished pulmonary function after birth. Previous work from our laboratory has demonstrated that nicotine alters lung development by affecting a nonneuronal cholinergic autocrine loop that is expressed in lung. Bronchial epithelial cells (BECs) express choline acetyltransferase, the choline high-affinity transporter and nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptor (nAChR) subunits. We now demonstrate through a combination of morphological and electrophysiological techniques that nicotine affects this autocrine loop by up-regulating and activating cholinergic signaling. RT-PCR showed the expression of alpha 3, alpha 4, alpha 7, alpha 9, alpha 10, beta2, and beta 4 nAChR mRNAs in rhesus monkey lung and cultured BECs. The expression of alpha 7, alpha 4, and beta2 nAChR was confirmed by immunofluorescence in the cultured BECs and lung. The electrophysiological characteristics of nAChR in BECs were determined using whole-cell patch-clamp on cultured BECs. Both ACh and nicotine evoked an inward current, with a rapid desensitizing current. Nicotine induced inward currents in a concentration-dependent manner, with an EC(50) of 26.7 microM. Nicotine-induced currents were reversibly blocked by the nicotinic antagonists, mecamylamine, dihydro-beta-erythroidine, and methyllcaconitine. Incubation of BECs with 1 microM nicotine for 48 hours enhanced nicotine-induced currents by roughly 26%. The protein tyrosine phosphorylation inhibitor, genistein, increased nicotine-induced currents by 58% and enhanced methyllcaconitine-sensitive currents (alpha 7 nAChR activities) 2.3-fold, whereas the protein tyrosine phosphatase inhibitor, pervanadate, decreased the effects of nicotine. These results demonstrate that chronic nicotine exposure up-regulates nAChR activity in developing lung, and that nAChR activity can be further modified by tyrosine phosphorylation.

  2. Pathogenesis of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms: Role of Nicotine and Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Li, Zong-Zhuang; Dai, Qiu-Yan

    2012-01-01

    Inflammation, proteolysis, smooth muscle cell apoptosis, and angiogenesis have been implicated in the pathogenesis of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs), although the well-defined initiating mechanism is not fully understood. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) such as MMP-2 and -9 and other proteinases degrading elastin and extracellular matrix are the critical pathogenesis of AAAs. Among the risk factors of AAAs, cigarette smoking is an irrefutable one. Cigarette smoke is practically involved in various aspects of the AAA pathogenesis. Nicotine, a major alkaloid in tobacco leaves and a primary component in cigarette smoke, can stimulate the MMPs expression by vascular SMCs, endothelial cells, and inflammatory cells in vascular wall and induce angiogenesis in the aneurysmal tissues. However, for the inflammatory and apoptotic processes in the pathogenesis of AAAs, nicotine seems to be moving in just the opposite direction. Additionally, the effects of nicotine are probably dose dependent or associated with the exposure duration and may be partly exerted by its receptors—nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). In this paper, we will mainly discuss the pathogenesis of AAAs involving inflammation, proteolysis, smooth muscle cell apoptosis and angiogenesis, and the roles of nicotine and nAChRs. PMID:22529515

  3. Menthol suppresses nicotinic acetylcholine receptor functioning in sensory neurons via allosteric modulation.

    PubMed

    Hans, M; Wilhelm, M; Swandulla, D

    2012-06-01

    In this study, we have investigated how the function of native and recombinant nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) is modulated by the monoterpenoid alcohol from peppermint (-) menthol. In trigeminal neurons (TG), we found that nicotine (75 μM)-activated whole-cell currents through nAChRs were reversibly reduced by menthol in a concentration-dependent manner with an IC₅₀ of 111 μM. To analyze the mechanism underlying menthol's action in more detail, we used single channel and whole-cell recordings from recombinant human α4β2 nAChR expressed in HEK tsA201 cells. Here, we found a shortening of channel open time and a prolongation of channel closed time, and an increase in single channel amplitude leading in summary to a reduction in single channel current. Furthermore, menthol did not affect nicotine's EC₅₀ value for currents through recombinant human α4β2 nAChRs but caused a significant reduction in nicotine's efficacy. Taken together, these findings indicate that menthol is a negative allosteric modulator of nAChRs.

  4. Acetylcholine receptors enable the transport of rapsyn from the Golgi complex to the plasma membrane

    PubMed Central

    Park, Jee-Young; Ikeda, Hiromi; Ikenaga, Takanori; Ono, Fumihito

    2012-01-01

    The accumulation of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) at nerve terminals is critical for signal transmission at the neuromuscular junction, and rapsyn is essential for this process. Previous studies suggest that AChRs might direct rapsyn self-clusters to the synapse. In vivo experiments with fluorescently tagged AChR or rapsyn in zebrafish larvae revealed that rapsyn self-clusters separate from AChRs did not exist before synapse formation. Examination of rapsyn in the AChR-less mutant sofa potato revealed that rapsyn in the absence of AChR was localized in the Golgi complex. Expression of muscle-type AChR in sofa potato restored synaptic clustering of rapsyn, while neuronal type AChR had no effect. To determine if this requirement of protein interaction is reciprocal, we examined the mutant twitch once, which has a missense mutation in rapsyn. While the AChRs distributed non-synaptically on the plasma membrane in twitch once, mutant rapsyn was retained in the Golgi complex. We conclude that AChRs enable the transport of rapsyn from the Golgi complex to the plasma membrane through a molecule-specific interaction. PMID:22623681

  5. 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.

  6. Actin at receptor-rich domains of isolated acetylcholine receptor clusters.

    PubMed

    Bloch, R J

    1986-04-01

    Acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clusters of cultured rat myotubes, isolated by extraction with saponin (Bloch, R. J., 1984, J. Cell Biol. 99:984-993), contain a polypeptide that co-electrophoreses with purified muscle actins. A monoclonal antibody against actin reacts in immunoblots with this polypeptide and with purified actins. In indirect immunofluorescence, the antibody stains isolated AChR clusters only at AChR domains, strips of membrane within clusters that are rich in receptor. It also stains the postsynaptic region of the neuromuscular junction of adult rat skeletal muscle. Semiquantitative immunofluorescence analyses show that labeling by antiactin of isolated analyses show that labeling by antiactin of isolated AChR clusters is specific and saturable and that it varies linearly with the amount of AChR in the cluster. Filaments of purified gizzard myosin also bind preferentially at AChR-rich regions, and this binding is inhibited by MgATP. These experiments suggest that actin is associated with AChR-rich regions of receptor clusters. Depletion of actin by extraction of isolated clusters at low ionic strength selectively releases the actin-like polypeptide from the preparation. Simultaneously, AChRs redistribute within the plane of the membrane of the isolated clusters. Similarly, brief digestion with chymotrypsin reduces immunofluorescence staining and causes AChR redistribution. Treatments that deplete AChR from clusters in intact cells also reduce immunofluorescent staining for actin in isolated muscle membrane fragments. Upon reversal of these treatments, cluster reformation occurs in regions of the membrane that also stain for actin. I conclude that actin is associated with AChR domains and that changes in this association are accompanied by changes in the organization of isolated AChR clusters.

  7. 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.

  8. Local application of drugs to study nicotinic acetylcholine receptor function in mouse brain slices.

    PubMed

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

    2012-10-29

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

  9. 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

  10. A modified acetylcholine receptor δ-subunit enables a null mutant to survive beyond sexual maturation

    PubMed Central

    Epley, Kimberly E.; Urban, Jason M.; Ikenaga, Takanori; Ono, Fumihito

    2008-01-01

    The contraction of skeletal muscle is dependent upon synaptic transmission through acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) at the neuromuscular junction (NMJ). The lack of an AChR subunit causes a fetal akinesia in humans, leading to death in the first trimester and characteristic features of Fetal Akinesia Deformation Sequences (FADS). A corresponding null mutation of the δ-subunit in zebrafish (sofa potato; sop−/−) leads to the death of embryos around 5 days post-fertilization (dpf). In sop−/− mutants, we expressed modified δ-subunits, with one (δ1YFP) or two yellow fluorescent protein (δ2YFP) molecules fused at the intracellular loop, under the control of an α-actin promoter. AChRs containing these fusion proteins are fluorescent, assemble on the plasma membrane, make clusters under motor neuron endings, and generate synaptic current. We screened for germ-line transmission of the transgene and established a line of sop−/− fish stably expressing the δ2YFP. These δ2YFP/sop−/− embryos can mount escape behavior close to that of their wild type siblings. Synaptic currents in these embryos had a smaller amplitude, slower rise time, and slower decay when compared to wild type fish. Remarkably, these embryos grow to adulthood and display complex behaviors such as feeding and breeding. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first case of a mutant animal corresponding to first trimester lethality in human that has been rescued by a transgene and survived to adulthood. In the rescued fish, a foreign promoter drove the transgene expression and the NMJ had altered synaptic strength. The survival of the transgenic animal delineates requirements for gene therapies of NMJ. PMID:19052214

  11. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-12-15

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

  13. Contributions from Caenorhabditis elegans functional genetics to antiparasitic drug target identification and validation: nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, a case study.

    PubMed

    Brown, L A; Jones, A K; Buckingham, S D; Mee, C J; Sattelle, D B

    2006-05-31

    Following the complete sequencing of the genome of the free-living nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans, in 1998, rapid advances have been made in assigning functions to many genes. Forward and reverse genetics have been used to identify novel components of synaptic transmission as well as determine the key components of antiparasitic drug targets. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are prototypical ligand-gated ion channels. The functions of these transmembrane proteins and the roles of the different members of their extensive subunit families are increasingly well characterised. The simple nervous system of C. elegans possesses one of the largest nicotinic acetylcholine receptor gene families known for any organism and a combination of genetic, microarray, physiological and reporter gene expression studies have added greatly to our understanding of the components of nematode muscle and neuronal nAChR subtypes. Chemistry-to-gene screens have identified five subunits that are components of nAChRs sensitive to the antiparasitic drug, levamisole. A novel, validated target acting downstream of the levamisole-sensitive nAChR has also been identified in such screens. Physiology and molecular biology studies on nAChRs of parasitic nematodes have also identified levamisole-sensitive and insensitive subtypes and further subdivisions are under investigation. PMID:16620825

  14. Characterization of opioid receptor types modulating acetylcholine release in septal regions of the rat brain.

    PubMed

    Gazyakan, E; Hennegriff, M; Haaf, A; Landwehrmeyer, G B; Feuerstein, T J; Jackisch, R

    2000-07-01

    Presynaptic opioid receptors of the delta- and mu-types have been shown to inhibit the release of acetylcholine (ACh) in the rat striatum and hippocampus, respectively, but it is unknown whether opioid receptors modulate the release of ACh also in the region of origin of the hippocampal cholinergic innervation, the septum. To answer this question, slices (350 microm) of the medial septal area and of the diagonal band of Broca, as well as (for comparison) of the hippocampus, were prepared from adult male Wistar rats. The slices were incubated with [3H]choline, superfused in the presence of hemicholinium-3 (10 microM) and stimulated twice (S1, S2) by electrical fields (360 pulses, 3 Hz, 2 ms, 60 mA); opioid receptor agonists were present during S2. The preferential mu-agonist [D-Ala2,N-Me-Phe4,Gly-ol5]enkephalin (DAMGO) inhibited the evoked ACh release by maximally about 40% in hippocampal slices and acted even more strongly in the medial septal area, or the diagonal band of Broca (about 60% or 75% maximal inhibition, respectively). These effects were reduced or abolished by the preferential mu-antagonist naloxone, which showed no effects when given alone. Using naloxone in the presence of a cocktail of peptidase inhibitors, no evidence for an endogenous tone of opioid peptides was found in the medial septal area, diagonal band of Broca or the hippocampus. Using the preferential delta-agonist [D-Pen2, D-Pen5]enkephalin (DPDPE) and the delta-antagonist naltrindole, a delta-opioid receptor inhibiting evoked ACh release was clearly detectable both in the medial septal area and the diagonal band of Broca, but not in the hippocampus, whereas the preferential kappa-agonist trans-3,4-dichloro-N-methyl-N-[2(1-pyrrolidinyl)cyclo-hexyl] benzeneacetamide (U50,488H) had only weak or no effects. In addition to the functional experiments, double in-situ hybridization studies were performed, in which cells containing mRNA for choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) were labeled by an

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Modulate Bone Marrow-Derived Pro-Inflammatory Monocyte Production and Survival

    PubMed Central

    St-Pierre, Stéphanie; Jiang, Wei; Roy, Patrick; Champigny, Camille; LeBlanc, Éric; Morley, Barbara J.; Hao, Junwei; Simard, Alain R.

    2016-01-01

    It is increasingly clear that nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are involved in immune regulation, and that their activation can protect against inflammatory diseases. Previous data have shown that nicotine diminishes the numbers of peripheral monocytes and macrophages, especially those of the pro-inflammatory phenotype. The goal of the present study was to determine if nicotine modulates the production of bone marrow -derived monocytes/macrophages. In this study, we first found that murine bone marrow cells express multiple nAChR subunits, and that the α7 and α9 nAChRs most predominant subtypes found in immune cells and their precursors. Using primary cultures of murine bone marrow cells, we then determined the effect of nicotine on monocyte colony-stimulating factor and interferon gamma (IFNγ)-induced monocyte production. We found that nicotine lowered the overall number of monocytes, and more specifically, inhibited the IFNγ-induced increase in pro-inflammatory monocytes by reducing cell proliferation and viability. These data suggested that nicotine diminishes the ratio of pro-inflammatory versus anti-inflammatory monocyte produced in the bone marrow. We thus confirmed this hypothesis by measuring cytokine expression, where we found that nicotine inhibited the production of the pro-inflammatory cytokines TNFα, IL-1β and IL-12, while stimulating the secretion of IL-10, an anti-inflammatory cytokine. Finally, nicotine also reduced the number of pro-inflammatory monocytes in the bone marrow of LPS-challenged mice. Overall, our data demonstrate that both α7 and α9 nAChRs are involved in the regulation of pro-inflammatory M1 monocyte numbers. PMID:26925951

  19. Signal transduction by M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor in prostate cancer

    PubMed Central

    GUO, LIQIANG; LIU, YUQIANG; DING, ZHIBO; SUN, WENDONG; YUAN, MINGZHEN

    2016-01-01

    The present study aimed to investigate the potential mechanisms used during signal transduction by M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (CHRM3) in prostate cancer. The microarray datasets of GSE3325, including 5 clinically localized primary prostate cancers and 4 benign prostate tissues, were downloaded from the Gene Expression Omnibus database. The differentially-expressed genes (DEGs) in primary prostate cancer tissues compared with benign controls were screened using the Limma package. Gene Ontology and pathway enrichment analyses were performed using the Database for Annotation Visualization and Integrated Discovery. Next, a protein-protein interaction (PPI) network was constructed. Additionally, microRNAs (miRNAs) associated with DEGs were predicted and miRNA-target DEG analysis was performed using a Web-based Gene Set Analysis Toolkit. Finally, the PPI network and the miRNA-target DEG network were integrated using Cytoscape. In total, 224 DEGs were screened in the prostate cancer tissues, including 113 upregulated and 111 downregulated genes. CHRM3 and epidermal growth factor (EGF) were enriched in the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton. EGF and v-myc avian myelocytomatosis viral oncogene homolog (Myc) were enriched in the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathway. EGF with the highest degree of connectivity was the hub node in the PPI network, and miR-34b could interact with Myc directly in the miRNA-target DEG network. EGF and Myc may exhibit significant roles in the progression of prostate cancer via regulation of the actin cytoskeleton and the MAPK signaling pathway. CHRM3 may activate these two pathways in prostate cancer progression. Thus, these two key factors and pathways may be crucial mechanisms during signal transduction by CHRM3 in prostate cancer. PMID:26870222

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

  1. A signal peptide missense mutation associated with nicotine dependence alters α2*-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor function.

    PubMed

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

    2014-04-01

    A cytosine to thymidine (C → T) missense mutation in the signal peptide (SP) sequence (rs2472553) of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) α2 subunit produces a threonine-to-isoleucine substitution (T22I) often associated with nicotine dependence (ND). We assessed effects on function of α2*-nAChR ('*'indicates presence of additional subunits) of this mutation, which could alter SP cleavage, RNA/protein secondary structure, and/or efficiency of transcription, translation, subunit assembly, receptor trafficking or cell surface expression. Two-electrode voltage clamp analyses indicate peak current responses to ACh or nicotine are decreased 2.8-5.8-fold for putative low sensitivity (LS; 10:1 ratio of α:β subunit cRNAs injected) α2β2- or α2β4-nAChR and increased for putative high sensitivity (HS; 1:10 α:β subunit ratio) α2β2- (5.7-15-fold) or α2β4- (1.9-2.2-fold) nAChR as a result of the mutation. Agonist potencies are decreased 1.6-4-fold for putative LS or HS α2(T22I)β2-nAChR or for either α2*-nAChR subtype formed in the presence of equal amounts of subunit cRNA, slightly decreased for LS α2(T22I)β4-nAChR, but increased 1.4-2.4-fold for HS α2(T22I)β4-nAChR relative to receptors containing wild-type α2 subunits. These effects suggest that the α2 subunit SP mutation generally favors formation of LS receptor isoforms. We hypothesize that lower sensitivity of human α2*-nAChR to nicotine could contribute to increased susceptibility to ND. To our knowledge this is the first report of a SP mutation having a functional effect in a member of cys-loop family of ligand-gated ion channels.

  2. 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

  3. Fractional vesamicol receptor occupancy and acetylcholine active transport inhibition in synaptic vesicles.

    PubMed

    Kaufman, R; Rogers, G A; Fehlmann, C; Parsons, S M

    1989-09-01

    Vesamicol [(-)-(trans)-2-(4-phenylpiperidino)cyclohexanol] receptor binding and inhibition of acetylcholine (AcCh) active transport by cholinergic synaptic vesicles that were isolated from Torpedo electric organ were studied for 23 vesamicol enantiomers, analogues, and other drugs. Use of trace [3H]vesamicol and [14C]AcCh allowed simultaneous determination of the concentrations of enantiomer, analogue, or drug required to half-saturate the vesamicol receptor (Ki) and to half-inhibit transport (IC50), respectively. Throughout a wide range of potencies for different compounds, the Ki/IC50 ratios varied from 1.5 to 24. Compounds representative of the diverse structures studied, namely deoxyvesamicol, chloroquine, and levorphanol, were competitive inhibitors of vesamicol binding. It is concluded that many drugs can bind to the vesamicol receptor and binding to only a small fraction of the receptors can result in AcCh active transport inhibition. Possible mechanisms for this effect are discussed. PMID:2550778

  4. Incorporation of Reconstituted Acetylcholine Receptors from Torpedo Into the Xenopus Oocyte Membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morales, A.; Aleu, J.; Ivorra, I.; Ferragut, J. A.; Gonzalez-Ros, J. M.; Miledi, R.

    1995-08-01

    Xenopus oocytes are a valuable aid for studying the molecular structure and function of ionic channels and neurotransmitter receptors. Their use has recently been extended by the demonstration that oocytes can incorporate foreign membranes carrying preassembled receptors and channels. Here we show that when reconstituted in an artificial lipid matrix and injected into Xenopus oocytes, purified nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are efficiently inserted into the plasma membrane, where they form "clusters" of receptors that retain their native properties. This constitutes an innovative approach that, besides allowing the analyses of membrane fusion processes, is also a powerful technique for studying the characteristics and regulation of many membrane proteins (with their native stoichiometry and configuration) upon reinsertion into the membrane of a very convenient host cell system.

  5. Incorporation of reconstituted acetylcholine receptors from Torpedo into the Xenopus oocyte membrane.

    PubMed Central

    Morales, A; Aleu, J; Ivorra, I; Ferragut, J A; Gonzalez-Ros, J M; Miledi, R

    1995-01-01

    Xenopus oocytes are a valuable aid for studying the molecular structure and function of ionic channels and neurotransmitter receptors. Their use has recently been extended by the demonstration that oocytes can incorporate foreign membranes carrying preassembled receptors and channels. Here we show that when reconstituted in an artificial lipid matrix and injected into Xenopus oocytes, purified nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are efficiently inserted into the plasma membrane, where they form "clusters" of receptors that retain their native properties. This constitutes an innovative approach that, besides allowing the analyses of membrane fusion processes, is also a powerful technique for studying the characteristics and regulation of many membrane proteins (with their native stoichiometry and configuration) upon reinsertion into the membrane of a very convenient host cell system. Images Fig. 1 PMID:7667313

  6. Central role of fibroblast alpha3 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in mediating cutaneous effects of nicotine.

    PubMed

    Arredondo, Juan; Hall, Leon L; Ndoye, Assane; Nguyen, Vu Thuong; Chernyavsky, Alexander I; Bercovich, Dani; Orr-Urtreger, Avi; Beaudet, Arthur L; Grando, Sergei A

    2003-02-01

    Smoking is associated with aberrant cutaneous tissue remodeling, such as precocious skin aging and impaired wound healing. The mechanism is not fully understood. Dermal fibroblasts (DF) are the primary cellular component of the dermis and may provide a target for pathobiologic effects of tobacco products. The purpose of this study was to characterize a mechanism of nicotine (Nic) effects on the growth and tissue remodeling function of DF. We hypothesized that the effects of Nic on DF result from its binding to specific nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed by these cells and that downstream signaling from the receptors alters normal cell functioning, leading to changes in skin homeostasis. Using RT-PCR and Western blotting, we found that a 24-hour exposure of human DF to 10 micro M Nic causes a 1.9- to 28-fold increase of the mRNA and protein levels of the cell cycle regulators p21, cyclin D1, Ki-67, and PCNA and a 1.7- to 2-fold increase of the apoptosis regulators Bcl-2 and caspase 3. Nic exposure also up-regulated expression of the dermal matrix proteins collagen type Ialpha1 and elastin as well as matrix metalloproteinase-1. Mecamylamine (Mec), the specific antagonist of nAChRs, abolished Nic-induced alterations, indicating that they resulted from a pharmacologic stimulation of nAChRs expressed by DF. To establish the relevance of these findings to a specific nicotinergic pathway, we studied human DF transfected with anti-alpha3 antisense oligonucleotides and murine DF from alpha3 nAChR knockout mice. In both cases, lack of alpha3 was associated with alterations in fibroblast growth and function that were opposite to those observed in DF treated with Nic, suggesting that the nicotinic effects on DF were mostly mediated by alpha3 nAChR. In addition to alpha3, the nAChR subunits detected in human DF were alpha5, alpha7, beta2, and beta4. The exposure of DF to Nic altered the relative amounts of each of these subunits, leading to reciprocal changes

  7. The immunomodulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits in Zhikong scallop Chlamys farreri.

    PubMed

    Shi, Xiaowei; Zhou, Zhi; Wang, Lingling; Wang, Mengqiang; Shi, Shaoying; Wang, Zhen; Song, Linsheng

    2015-11-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), the best-studied ionotropic neuron receptor protein, is a key player in neuronal communication, and it has been reported to play an important role in immunomodulation of vertebrates. Although nAChRs have also been identified in most invertebrates, the knowledge about their immunomodulation is still limited. In the present study, two scallop nAChR genes were identified from Chlamys farreri (designed as CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2), which encoded 384 and 443 amino acids, respectively. The conserved disulfide-linked cystines, ion selectivity residues and the hydrophobic gating residues (L251, V255 and V259) were identified in CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2. The immunoreactivities of CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2 were observed in all the tested scallop tissues, including adductor muscle, mantle, gill, hepatopancreas, kidney and gonad. After LPS (0.5 mg mL(-1)) stimulation, the expression of CfnAChR1 mRNA in haemocytes increased significantly by 9.83-fold (P < 0.05) and 12.93-fold (P < 0.05) at 3 h and 24 h, respectively. While the expression level of CfnAChR2 mRNA increased 43.94% at 12 h after LPS stimulation (P < 0.05). After TNF-α (50 ng mL(-1)) stimulation, the expression levels of CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2 both increased significantly at 1 h, which were 21.33-fold (P < 0.05) and 2.44-fold (P < 0.05) of that in the PBS group, respectively. The results collectively indicated that the cholinergic nervous system in scallops could be activated by immune stimulations through CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2, which function as the links between the cholinergic nervous system and immune system.

  8. The immunomodulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits in Zhikong scallop Chlamys farreri.

    PubMed

    Shi, Xiaowei; Zhou, Zhi; Wang, Lingling; Wang, Mengqiang; Shi, Shaoying; Wang, Zhen; Song, Linsheng

    2015-11-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), the best-studied ionotropic neuron receptor protein, is a key player in neuronal communication, and it has been reported to play an important role in immunomodulation of vertebrates. Although nAChRs have also been identified in most invertebrates, the knowledge about their immunomodulation is still limited. In the present study, two scallop nAChR genes were identified from Chlamys farreri (designed as CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2), which encoded 384 and 443 amino acids, respectively. The conserved disulfide-linked cystines, ion selectivity residues and the hydrophobic gating residues (L251, V255 and V259) were identified in CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2. The immunoreactivities of CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2 were observed in all the tested scallop tissues, including adductor muscle, mantle, gill, hepatopancreas, kidney and gonad. After LPS (0.5 mg mL(-1)) stimulation, the expression of CfnAChR1 mRNA in haemocytes increased significantly by 9.83-fold (P < 0.05) and 12.93-fold (P < 0.05) at 3 h and 24 h, respectively. While the expression level of CfnAChR2 mRNA increased 43.94% at 12 h after LPS stimulation (P < 0.05). After TNF-α (50 ng mL(-1)) stimulation, the expression levels of CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2 both increased significantly at 1 h, which were 21.33-fold (P < 0.05) and 2.44-fold (P < 0.05) of that in the PBS group, respectively. The results collectively indicated that the cholinergic nervous system in scallops could be activated by immune stimulations through CfnAChR1 and CfnAChR2, which function as the links between the cholinergic nervous system and immune system. PMID:26455648

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Structure-function studies of the muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor by site-directed mutagenesis in the pore region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Haiyun

    In nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), as in glycine, GABA A, serotonin 5-HT3, and GluCl glutamate receptors, a leucine residue at the approximate midpoint (the 9' position) of the M2 transmembrane domain is conserved across all known subunits. We expressed the embryonic mouse muscle nAChRs with varying numbers (m* s) of subunits (2 αs, 1 β, 1 γ, and 1 δ) mutated at this position in Xenopus oocytes and discovered that mutations to serine (Leu9'Ser) result in a tenfold higher receptor sensitivity to acetylcholine (ACh) for each subunit mutated. Moreover, increases of side-chain polarity increase the sensitivity to ACh when other natural and unnatural residues are incorporated into this position. The data also indicated an especially strong interaction between the γ and δ subunits in the pore region, suggesting a specific arrangement of subunits within the pentamer. Detailed single-channel kinetic studies reveal that Leu9'Ser AChRs have (1) longer voltage- relaxation time constants, (2) longer ACh-induced openings and bursts, and (3) more frequent spontaneous openings. These effects increase with m* s. Synthesized postsynaptic currents were produced with a piezoelectric micromanipulator that delivered brief ACh pulses to multi-channel patches. Their decay time constants were, as expected, similar to the channel burst duration. Thus, both longer and more frequent openings contribute to the >=104-fold increase in the receptor sensitivity to ACh from the wild-type receptor to the receptor with m*s=4; and the highly conserved 9' leucine is crucial for the brief synaptic events that are normally observed. We also explored the effects of ligand-binding domain mutations: γD174N and δD180N (aspartic acid (D) to asparagine (N)). Macroscopic dose-response relations revealed that these mutations decrease the receptor's sensitivity to ACh. The combined effect with Leu9'Ser, however, differs from that predicted from a linear or independent sum of effects from

  12. Amino acids of the Torpedo marmorata acetylcholine receptor. cap alpha. subunit labeled by a photoaffinity ligand for the acetylcholine binding site

    SciTech Connect

    Dennis, M.; Giraudat, J.; Kotzyba-Hibert, F.; Goeldner, M.; Hirth, C.; Chang, J.Y.; Lazure, C.; Chretien, M.; Changeux, J.P.

    1988-04-05

    The acetylcholine-binding sites on the native, membrane-bound acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo marmorata were covalently labeled with the photoaffinity reagent (/sup 3/H)-p-(dimethylamino)-benzenediazonium fluoroborate (DDF) in the presence of phencyclidine by employing an energy-transfer photolysis procedure. The ..cap alpha..-chains isolated from receptor-rich membranes photolabeled in the absence or presence of carbamoylcholine were cleaved with CNBr and the radiolabeled fragments purified by high-performance liquid chromatography. Amino acid and/or sequence analysis demonstrated that the ..cap alpha..-chain residues Trp-149, Tyr-190, Cys-192, and Cys-193 and an unidentified residue(s) in the segment ..cap alpha.. 31-105 were all labeled by the photoaffinity reagent in an agonist-protectable manner. The labeled amino acids are located within three distinct regions of the large amino-terminal hydrophilic domain of the ..cap alpha..-subunit primary structure and plausibly lie in proximity to one another at the level of the acetylcholine-binding sites in the native receptor. These findings are in accord with models proposed for the transmembrane topology of the ..cap alpha..-chain that assign the amino-terminal segment ..cap alpha.. 1-210 to the synaptic cleft. Furthermore, the results suggest that the four identified (/sup 3/H)DDF-labeled resides, which are conserved in muscle and neuronal ..cap alpha..-chains but not in the other subunits, may be directly involved in agonist binding.

  13. Absence of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α7 subunit amplifies inflammation and accelerates onset of fibrosis: an inflammatory kidney model

    PubMed Central

    Truong, Luan D.; Trostel, Jessica; Garcia, Gabriela E.

    2015-01-01

    Inflammation is regulated by endogenous mechanisms, including anti-inflammatory cytokines, adenosine, and the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α7 subunit (α7nAChR). We investigated the role of α7nAChR in protection against the progression of tissue injury in a model of severe, macrophage-mediated, cytokine-dependent anti-glomerular basement membrane (GBM) glomerulonephritis (GN), in α7nAChR-deficient (α7−/−) mice . At d 7 after the injection of anti-GBM antibody, kidneys from α7−/− mice displayed severe glomeruli (P < 0.0001) and tubulointerstitial lesions (P < 0.001) compared to kidneys from WT mice. An important finding was the presence of severe glomerulosclerosis in α7−/− mice in this early phase of the disease. Kidneys of α7−/− mice showed greater accumulation of inflammatory cells and higher expression of chemokines and cytokines than did those of WT mice. In addition, in α7−/− fibrotic kidneys, the expression of fibrin, collagen, TGF-β, and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP)-2 increased, and the expression of TIMP3 declined. The increase in counterregulatory responses to inflammation in α7−/− nephritic kidneys did not compensate for the lack of α7nAChR. These findings indicate that α7nAChR plays a key role in regulating the inflammatory response in anti-GBM GN and that disruption of the endogenous protective α7nAChR amplifies inflammation to accelerate kidney damage and fibrosis.—Truong, L. D., Trostel. J., Garcia, G. E. Absence of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α7 subunit amplifies inflammation and accelerates onset of fibrosis: an inflammatory kidney model. PMID:25985801

  14. Stimulation of brain muscarinic acetylcholine receptors acutely reverses radiogenic hypodipsia

    SciTech Connect

    Mickley, G.A.; Stevens, K.E.

    1986-03-01

    A sufficiently large dose of ionizing radiation produces changes in water consumption. However, the direction, durations, and physiological substrates of these alterations remain in question. Here we report a 5-d hypodipsia in rats exposed to 600 rads /sup 60/Co but a more transient, albeit larger, reduction in drinking after 1000 /sup 60/Co. Brain cholinergic neurons have been implicated as mediators of thirst. Therefore, we explored the role of hypothalamic muscarinic receptors in the production of radiation-induced hypodipsia. This was accomplished through the intrahypothalamic injection of carbachol (a muscarinic agonist) or atropine (a muscarinic antagonist) in irradiated rats. Intracranial carbachol produced acute reversal of radiogenic hypodipsia while atropine potentiated the hypodipsia. These post-irradiation drug-induced behaviors were similar to those observed after the same drug treatments before irradiation. Since cholinergic neuronal functions persist and are labile (can be pharmacologically stimulated and blocked) after irradiation, this suggests that other neuronal systems and/or neurochemicals may be more prominently involved in radiogenic hypodipsia.

  15. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes which selectively couple to phospholipase C: Pharmacological and biochemical properties

    SciTech Connect

    Buck, M.A.; Fraser, C.M. )

    1990-12-14

    The pharmacological and biochemical properties of rat m1 and m3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChR) stably transfected into Chinese hamster ovary-K1 (CHO) cells were characterized with ligand binding, affinity labeling and biochemical assays. Both mAChR subtypes display saturable, high affinity binding of (3H)-quinuclidinyl benzilate (QNB) and a rank order of antagonist potency of QNB greater than atropine greater than pirenzepine greater than AF-DX 116. Carbachol displacement of (3H)-QNB binding to the m3 mAChR revealed an approximate 17-fold higher affinity than observed with the m1 mAChR. (3H)-propylbenzilylcholine mustard (PrBCM) labeling of mAChR revealed that m1 and m3 mAChR migrated on SDS-polyacrylamide gels with apparent molecular masses of 80,000 and 94,000 daltons, respectively, consistent with the known differences in their molecular sizes. Both m1 and m3 mAChR elicited dose-dependent increases in the hydrolysis of phosphoinositides; however, the maximal increase in total inositol phosphates elicited with the m1 mAChR was approximately 2-fold greater than that observed in cells expressing similar densities of m3 mAChR. Agonist activation of the m1 mAChR also elicited increases in basal and forskolin-stimulated cAMP, whereas the m3 mAChR had no effect on intracellular cAMP levels. These data suggest that although m1 and m3 mAChR display a considerable degree of structural homology, they exhibit distinct pharmacological and biochemical properties.

  16. Presynaptic targeting of alpha4beta 2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors is regulated by neurexin-1beta.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Shi-Bin; Amici, Stephanie A; Ren, Xiao-Qin; McKay, Susan B; Treuil, Magdalen W; Lindstrom, Jon M; Rao, Jayaraman; Anand, Rene

    2009-08-28

    The mechanisms involved in the targeting of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs), critical for their functional organization at neuronal synapses, are not well understood. We have identified a novel functional association between alpha4beta2 AChRs and the presynaptic cell adhesion molecule, neurexin-1beta. In non-neuronal tsA 201 cells, recombinant neurexin-1beta and mature alpha4beta2 AChRs form complexes. alpha4beta2 AChRs and neurexin-1beta also coimmunoprecipitate from rat brain lysates. When exogenous alpha4beta2 AChRs and neurexin-1beta are coexpressed in hippocampal neurons, they are robustly targeted to hemi-synapses formed between these neurons and cocultured tsA 201 cells expressing neuroligin-1, a postsynaptic binding partner of neurexin-1beta. The extent of synaptic targeting is significantly reduced in similar experiments using a mutant neurexin-1beta lacking the extracellular domain. Additionally, when alpha4beta2 AChRs, alpha7 AChRs, and neurexin-1beta are coexpressed in the same neuron, only the alpha4beta2 AChR colocalizes with neurexin-1beta at presynaptic terminals. Collectively, these data suggest that neurexin-1beta targets alpha4beta2 AChRs to presynaptic terminals, which mature by trans-synaptic interactions between neurexins and neuroligins. Interestingly, human neurexin-1 gene dysfunctions have been implicated in nicotine dependence and in autism spectrum disorders. Our results provide novel insights as to possible mechanisms by which dysfunctional neurexins, through downstream effects on alpha4beta2 AChRs, may contribute to the etiology of these neurological disorders.

  17. Deletion of M1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptors increases amyloid pathology in vitro and in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Albert A.; Fritz, Jason J.; Wess, Jürgen; Lah, James J.; Levey, Allan I.

    2010-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a progressive neurological disorder that causes dementia and poses a major public health crisis as the population ages. Aberrant processing of the amyloid precursor protein (APP) is strongly implicated as a proximal event in AD pathophysiology, but the neurochemical signals that regulate APP processing in the brain are not completely understood. Activation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs) has been shown to affect APP processing and AD pathology, but less is known about the roles of specific mAChR subtypes. In this study, we used M1 mAChR knockout mice (M1KO) to isolate the effects of the M1 mAChR on APP processing in primary neurons and on the development of amyloid pathology in a transgenic mouse model of AD. We demonstrate that the loss of M1 mAChRs increases amyloidogenic APP processing in neurons, as evidenced by decreased agonist-regulated shedding of the neuroprotective APP ectodomain APPsα and increased production of toxic Aβ peptides. Expression of M1 mAChRs on the M1KO background rescued this phenotype, indicating that M1 mAChRs are sufficient to modulate non-amyloidogenic APP processing. In APPSwe/Ind transgenic mice, the loss of M1 mAChRs resulted in increased levels of brain Aβ1-40 and greater accumulation of amyloid plaque pathology. Analysis of APP metabolites in APPSwe/Ind brain tissue indicates that the loss of M1 mAChRs increases amyloidogenic APP processing. These results indicate that the M1 mAChR is an important regulator of amyloidogenesis in the brain and provide strong support for targeting the M1 mAChR as a therapeutic candidate in AD. PMID:20335454

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-07-04

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  1. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and its prokaryotic homologues: Structure, conformational transitions & allosteric modulation.

    PubMed

    Cecchini, Marco; Changeux, Jean-Pierre

    2015-09-01

    Pentameric ligand-gated ion channels (pLGICs) play a central role in intercellular communications in the nervous system by converting the binding of a chemical messenger - a neurotransmitter - into an ion flux through the postsynaptic membrane. Here, we present an overview of the most recent advances on the signal transduction mechanism boosted by X-ray crystallography of both prokaryotic and eukaryotic homologues of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) in conjunction with time-resolved analyses based on single-channel electrophysiology and Molecular Dynamics simulations. The available data consistently point to a global mechanism of gating that involves a large reorganization of the receptor mediated by two distinct quaternary transitions: a global twisting and a radial expansion/contraction of the extracellular domain. These transitions profoundly modify the organization of the interface between subunits, which host several sites for orthosteric and allosteric modulatory ligands. The same mechanism may thus mediate both positive and negative allosteric modulations of pLGICs ligand binding at topographically distinct sites. The emerging picture of signal transduction is expected to pave the way to new pharmacological strategies for the development of allosteric modulators of nAChR and pLGICs in general. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'The Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: From Molecular Biology to Cognition'.

  2. Selective ligand behaviors provide new insights into agonist activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Marotta, Christopher B; Rreza, Iva; Lester, Henry A; Dougherty, Dennis A

    2014-05-16

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are a diverse set of ion channels that are essential to everyday brain function. Contemporary research studies selective activation of individual subtypes of receptors, with the hope of increasing our understanding of behavioral responses and neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we aim to expand current binding models to help explain the specificity seen among three activators of α4β2 receptors: sazetidine-A, cytisine, and NS9283. Through mutational analysis, we can interchange the activation profiles of the stoichiometry-selective compounds sazetidine-A and cytisine. In addition, mutations render NS9283--currently identified as a positive allosteric modulator--into an agonist. These results lead to two conclusions: (1) occupation at each primary face of an α subunit is needed to activate the channel and (2) the complementary face of the adjacent subunit dictates the binding ability of the agonist.

  3. 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.

  4. The cholinergic immune regulation mediated by a novel muscarinic acetylcholine receptor through TNF pathway in oyster Crassostrea gigas.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhaoqun; Zhou, Zhi; Wang, Lingling; Dong, Wenjing; Qiu, Limei; Song, Linsheng

    2016-12-01

    Muscarinic receptors, which selectively take muscarine as their ligand, are critical for the immunological and physiological processes in animals. In the present study, the open region frame (ORF) of a homologue of muscarinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptor (mAChR) was amplified from oyster Crassostrea gigas (named as CgmAChR-1), whose full length was 1983 bp and the protein it encoded contained 660 amino acids with a seven transmembrane region. Phylogeny analysis suggested that CgmAChR-1 shared homology with M5 muscarinic receptor found in invertebrates including Habropoda laboriosa, Acromyrmex echinatior and Echinococcus granulosus. After cell transfection of CgmAChR-1 into HEK293T cells and ACh incubation, the level of intracellular Ca(2+) and cAMP increased significantly (p < 0.05). Such trend could be reverted with the addition of M3 and M5 muscarinic receptor antagonists DAMP and DAR. The CgmAChR-1 transcripts were ubiquitously detectable in seven different tissues with the maximal expression level in adductor muscle. When the oysters received LPS stimulation, CgmAChR-1 mRNA expression in haemocyte was increased to the highest level (6.05-fold, p < 0.05) at 24 h, while blocking CgmAChR-1 using receptor antagonists before LPS stimulation promoted the expression of oyster TNF, resulting in the increase of haemocyte apoptosis index. These results suggested that CgmAChR-1 was the key molecule in cholinergic neuroendocrine-immune system contributing to the regulation of TNF expression and apoptosis process. PMID:27394930

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1992-01-01

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

  6. A nicotinic acetylcholine receptor mutation (Y151S) causes reduced agonist potency to a range of neonicotinoid insecticides.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zewen; Williamson, Martin S; Lansdell, Stuart J; Han, Zhaojun; Denholm, Ian; Millar, Neil S

    2006-11-01

    Neonicotinoid insecticides are potent selective agonists of insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Since their introduction in 1991, resistance to neonicotinoids has been slow to develop, but it is now established in some insect field populations such as the planthopper, Nilaparvata lugens, a major rice pest in many parts of Asia. We have reported recently the identification of a target-site mutation (Y151S) within two nAChR subunits (Nlalpha1 and Nlalpha3) from a laboratory-selected field population of N. lugens. In the present study, we have examined the influence of this mutation upon the functional properties of recombinant nAChRs expressed in Xenopus oocytes (as hybrid nAChRs, co-expressed with a rat beta2 subunit). The agonist potency of several nicotinic agonists has been examined, including all of the neonicotinoid insecticides that are currently licensed for either crop protection or animal health applications (acetamiprid, clothianidin, dinotefuran, imidacloprid, nitenpyram, thiacloprid and thiamethoxam). The Y151S mutation was found to have no significant effect on the maximal current (I(max)) observed with the endogenous agonist, acetylcholine. In contrast, a significant reduction in I(max) was observed for all neonicotinoids (the I(max) for mutant nAChRs ranged from 13 to 81% of that observed on wild-type receptors). In addition, nAChRs containing the Y151S mutation caused a significant rightward shift in agonist dose-response curves for all neonicotinoids, but of varying magnitude (shifts in EC(50) values ranged from 1.3 to 3.6-fold). The relationship between neonicotinoid structure and their potency on nAChRs containing the Y151S target-site mutation is discussed.

  7. Nicotine-motivated behavior in Caenorhabditis elegans requires the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits acr-5 and acr-15.

    PubMed

    Sellings, Laurie; Pereira, Schreiber; Qian, Cheng; Dixon-McDougall, Thomas; Nowak, Christina; Zhao, Bin; Tyndale, Rachel F; van der Kooy, Derek

    2013-03-01

    Signaling at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in Caenorhabditis elegans controls many behaviors, including egg-laying and locomotor activity. Here, we show that C. elegans approaches a point source of nicotine in a time-, concentration- and age-dependent manner. Additionally, nicotine paired with butanone under starvation conditions prevented the reduced approach to butanone that is observed when butanone is paired with starvation alone and pairing with nicotine generates a preference for the tastes of either sodium or chloride over baseline. These results suggest nicotine acts as a rewarding substance in C. elegans. Furthermore, the nicotinic receptor antagonist mecamylamine, the smoking cessation pharmacotherapy varenicline, mutation of the dop-1 and dop-2 dopamine receptors, and mutations of either acr-5 or acr-15, two nicotinic receptor subunit genes with sequence homology to the mammalian α7 subunit, all reduced the nicotine approach behavior. These two mutants also were defective at associating the presence of nicotine with butanone under starvation conditions and acr-5 mutation could obviate the effect of pairing nicotine with salts. Furthermore, the approach deficit in acr-15 mutants was rescued by selective re-expression in a subset of neurons, but not in muscle. Caenorhabditis elegans may therefore serve as a useful model organism for nicotine-motivated behaviors that could aid in the identification of novel nicotine motivational molecular pathways and consequently the development of novel cessation aids.

  8. Effects of extracellular acetylcholine on muscarinic receptor binding assessed by [125I]dexetimide and a simple probe.

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Roa, P M; Wagner, H N; Villemagne, V L; London, E D; Lever, J R

    1998-10-01

    New pharmacologic approaches to enhance brain cholinergic function focus on increasing intrasynaptic acetylcholine. We examined the usefulness of a simple probe and [125I]dexetimide to evaluate in vivo the effects of extracellular acetylcholine on muscarinic receptor binding in the mouse brain. After radiotracer injection continuous time/activity curves were generated over 330 min. [125I]Dexetimide reached a plateau at 90 min post-injection. To increase extracellular acetylcholine, the anticholinesterase physostigmine was administered at 120 min, producing a reversible decrease in [125I]dexetimide specific binding (23%) for 30 min. These findings demonstrate that dynamic changes in extracellular acetylcholine can be evaluated by displacement of [125I]dexetimide binding in vivo using a simple probe system. PMID:9822886

  9. Rapid synthesis of acetylcholine receptors at neuromuscular junctions. (Reannouncement with new availability information)

    SciTech Connect

    Ramsay, D.A.; Drachman, D.B.; Pestronk, A.

    1988-12-31

    The rate of acetylcholine receptor (AChR) degradation in mature, innervated mammalian neuromuscular junctions has recently been shown to be biphasic; up to 20% are rapidly turned over whereas the remainder are lost more slowly. In order to maintain normal junctional receptor density, synthesis and insertion of AChRs should presumably be sufficiently rapid to replace both the RTOs and the stable receptors. The authors have tested this prediction by blocking pre-existing AChRs in the mouse sternomastoid muscle with alpha bungarotoxin and monitoring the subsequent appearance of new junctional AChRs at intervals of 3 h to 20 days by labelling them. The results show that new receptors were initially inserted rapidly. The rate of increase of new binding sites gradually slowed down during the remainder of the time period studied. Control observations excluded possible artifacts of the experimental procedure including incomplete blockade of AChRs, dissociation of toxin receptor complexes, or experimentally induced alteration of receptor synthesis. The present demonstration of rapid synthesis and incorporation of AChRs at innervated neuromuscular junctions provides support for the concept of a subpopulation of rapidly turned over AChRs. The RTOs may serve as precursors for the large population of stable receptors and have an important role in the metabolism of the neuromuscular synapse.

  10. Null mutation of the β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit attenuates nicotine withdrawal-induced anhedonia in mice.

    PubMed

    Stoker, Astrid K; Marks, Michael J; Markou, Athina

    2015-04-15

    The anhedonic signs of nicotine withdrawal are predictive of smoking relapse rates in humans. Identification of the neurobiological substrates that mediate anhedonia will provide insights into the genetic variations that underlie individual responses to smoking cessation and relapse. The present study assessed the role of β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nACh receptor) subunits in nicotine withdrawal-induced anhedonia using β2 nACh receptor subunit knockout (β2(-/-)) and wildtype (β2(+/+)) mice. Anhedonia was assessed with brain reward thresholds, defined as the current intensity that supports operant behavior in the discrete-trial current-intensity intracranial self-stimulation procedure. Nicotine was delivered chronically through osmotic minipumps for 28 days (40 mg/kg/day, base), and withdrawal was induced by either administering the broad-spectrum nicotinic receptor antagonist mecamylamine (i.e., antagonist-precipitated withdrawal) in mice chronically treated with nicotine or terminating chronic nicotine administration (i.e., spontaneous withdrawal). Mecamylamine (6 mg/kg, salt) significantly elevated brain reward thresholds in nicotine-treated β2(+/+) mice compared with saline-treated β2(+/+) mice and nicotine-treated β2(-/-) mice. Spontaneous nicotine withdrawal similarly resulted in significant elevations in thresholds in nicotine-withdrawing β2(+/+) mice compared with saline-treated β2(+/+) and nicotine-treated β2(-/-) mice, which remained at baseline levels. These results showed that precipitated and spontaneous nicotine withdrawal-induced anhedonia was attenuated in β2(-/-) mice. The reduced expression of anhedonic signs during nicotine withdrawal in β2(-/-) mice may have resulted from the lack of neuroadaptations in β2 nACh receptor subunit expression and function that may have occurred during either nicotine exposure or nicotine withdrawal in wildtype mice. In conclusion, individuals with genetic variations that result in diminished

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. Crystal structure of acetylcholine-binding protein from Bulinus truncatus reveals the conserved structural scaffold and sites of variation in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Celie, Patrick H N; Klaassen, Remco V; van Rossum-Fikkert, Sarah E; van Elk, René; van Nierop, Pim; Smit, August B; Sixma, Titia K

    2005-07-15

    The crystal structure of acetylcholine-binding protein (AChBP) from the mollusk Lymnaea stagnalis is the established model for the ligand binding domains of the ligand-gated ion channel family, which includes nicotinic acetylcholine, 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT3), gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), types A and C, and glycine receptors. Here we present the crystal structure of a remote homolog, AChBP from Bulinus truncatus, which reveals both the conserved structural scaffold and the sites of variation in this receptor family. These include rigid body movements of loops that are close to the transmembrane interface in the receptors and changes in the intermonomer contacts, which alter the pentamer stability drastically. Structural, pharmacological and mutational analysis of both AChBPs shows how 3 amino acid changes in the binding site contribute to a 5-10-fold difference in affinity for nicotinic ligands. Comparison of these structures will be valuable for improving structure-function studies of ligand-gated ion channel receptors, including signal transduction, homology modeling, and drug design. PMID:15899893

  15. 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.

  16. 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}.

  17. Heterogeneous Inhibition in Macroscopic Current Responses of Four Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Subtypes by Cholesterol Enrichment.

    PubMed

    Báez-Pagán, Carlos A; Del Hoyo-Rivera, Natalie; Quesada, Orestes; Otero-Cruz, José David; Lasalde-Dominicci, José A

    2016-08-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), located in the cell membranes of neurons and muscle cells, mediates the transmission of nerve impulses across cholinergic synapses. In addition, the nAChR is also found in the electric organs of electric rays (e.g., the genus Torpedo). Cholesterol, which is a key lipid for maintaining the correct functionality of membrane proteins, has been found to alter the nAChR function. We were thus interested to probe the changes in the functionality of different nAChRs expressed in a model membrane with modified cholesterol to phospholipid ratios (C/P). In this study, we examined the effect of increasing the C/P ratio in Xenopus laevis oocytes expressing the neuronal α7, α4β2, muscle-type, and Torpedo californica nAChRs in their macroscopic current responses. Using the two-electrode voltage clamp technique, it was found that the neuronal α7 and Torpedo nAChRs are significantly more sensitive to small increases in C/P than the muscle-type nAChR. The peak current versus C/P profiles during enrichment display different behaviors; α7 and Torpedo nAChRs display a hyperbolic decay with two clear components, whereas muscle-type and α4β2 nAChRs display simple monophasic decays with different slopes. This study clearly illustrates that a physiologically relevant increase in membrane cholesterol concentration produces a remarkable reduction in the macroscopic current responses of the neuronal α7 and Torpedo nAChRs functionality, whereas the muscle nAChR appears to be the most resistant to cholesterol inhibition among all four nAChR subtypes. Overall, the present study demonstrates differential profiles for cholesterol inhibition among the different types of nAChR to physiological cholesterol increments in the plasmatic membrane. This is the first study to report a cross-correlation analysis of cholesterol sensitivity among different nAChR subtypes in a model membrane. PMID:27116687

  18. 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

  19. 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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1998-01-01

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

  1. 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

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  4. Facilitation of memory storage by the acetylcholine M2 muscarinic receptor antagonist AF-DX 116.

    PubMed

    Baratti, C M; Opezzo, J W; Kopf, S R

    1993-07-01

    Post-training administration of the acetylcholine muscarinic M2 presynaptic receptor antagonist AF-DX 116 (0.1-10.0 mg/kg, ip), facilitated 48 h retention, in male Swiss mice, of a one-trial step-through inhibitory avoidance task. The dose-response curve was an inverted U. AF-DX 116 did not increase the retention latencies of mice that had not received a footshock during training. The influence of AF-DX 116 (1 mg/kg, ip) on retention was time-dependent, which suggests that the drug facilitated memory storage. The memory facilitation induced by AF-DX 116 (1 mg/kg, ip) was prevented by atropine (0.5 mg/kg, ip) administered after training, but 10 min prior to AF-DX 116 treatment. In contrast, neither methylatropine (0.5 mg/kg, ip), a peripherally acting muscarinic receptor blocker, nor mecamylamine (5 mg/kg, ip) or hexamethonium (5 mg/kg, ip), two cholinergic nicotinic receptor antagonists, prevented the effects of post-training AF-DX 116 on retention. Low subeffective doses of the central acting anticholinesterase physostigmine (35 micrograms/kg, ip), administered immediately after training, and AF-DX 116 (0.1 mg/kg, ip), given 10 min after training, acted synergistically to improve retention. The effects of AF-DX 116 (0.1 mg/kg, ip) were not influenced by the peripherally acting anticholinesterase neostigmine (35 micrograms/kg, ip). Considered together, these findings suggest that the activation of a muscarinic cholinergic presynaptic inhibitory mechanism, probably by increasing brain acetylcholine release, may modulate the activity of post-training processes involved in memory storage. PMID:8216161

  5. Tramadol state-dependent memory: involvement of dorsal hippocampal muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Jafari-Sabet, Majid; Jafari-Sabet, Ali-Reza; Dizaji-Ghadim, Ali

    2016-08-01

    The effects on tramadol state-dependent memory of bilateral intradorsal hippocampal (intra-CA1) injections of physostigmine, an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, and atropine, a muscarinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist, were examined in adult male NMRI mice. A single-trial step-down passive avoidance task was used for the assessment of memory retention. Post-training intra-CA1 administration of an atypical μ-opioid receptor agonist, tramadol (0.5 and 1 μg/mouse), dose dependently impaired memory retention. Pretest injection of tramadol (0.5 and 1 μg/mouse, intra-CA1) induced state-dependent retrieval of the memory acquired under the influence of post-training tramadol (1 μg/mouse, intra-CA1). A pretest intra-CA1 injection of physostigmine (1 μg/mouse) reversed the memory impairment induced by post-training administration of tramadol (1 μg/mouse, intra-CA1). Moreover, pretest administration of physostigmine (0.5 and 1 μg/mouse, intra-CA1) with an ineffective dose of tramadol (0.25 μg/mouse, intra-CA1) also significantly restored retrieval. Pretest administration of physostigmine (0.25, 0.5, and 1 μg/mouse, intra-CA1) by itself did not affect memory retention. A pretest intra-CA1 injection of the atropine (1 and 2 μg/mouse) 5 min before the administration of tramadol (1 μg/mouse, intra-CA1) dose dependently inhibited tramadol state-dependent memory. Pretest administration of atropine (0.5, 1, and 2 μg/mouse, intra-CA1) by itself did not affect memory retention. It can be concluded that dorsal hippocampal muscarinic acetylcholine receptor mechanisms play an important role in the modulation of tramadol state-dependent memory.

  6. Structurally Similar Allosteric Modulators of α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors Exhibit Five Distinct Pharmacological Effects*

    PubMed Central

    Gill-Thind, JasKiran K.; Dhankher, Persis; D'Oyley, Jarryl M.; Sheppard, Tom D.; Millar, Neil S.

    2015-01-01

    Activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) is associated with the binding of agonists such as acetylcholine to an extracellular site that is located at the interface between two adjacent receptor subunits. More recently, there has been considerable interest in compounds, such as positive and negative allosteric modulators (PAMs and NAMs), that are able to modulate nAChR function by binding to distinct allosteric sites. Here we examined a series of compounds differing only in methyl substitution of a single aromatic ring. This series of compounds includes a previously described α7-selective allosteric agonist, cis-cis-4-p-tolyl-3a,4,5,9b-tetrahydro-3H-cyclopenta[c]quinoline-8-sulfonamide (4MP-TQS), together with all other possible combinations of methyl substitution at a phenyl ring (18 additional compounds). Studies conducted with this series of compounds have revealed five distinct pharmacological effects on α7 nAChRs. These five effects can be summarized as: 1) nondesensitizing activation (allosteric agonists), 2) potentiation associated with minimal effects on receptor desensitization (type I PAMs), 3) potentiation associated with reduced desensitization (type II PAMs), 4) noncompetitive antagonism (NAMs), and 5) compounds that have no effect on orthosteric agonist responses but block allosteric modulation (silent allosteric modulators (SAMs)). Several lines of experimental evidence are consistent with all of these compounds acting at a common, transmembrane allosteric site. Notably, all of these chemically similar compounds that have been classified as nondesensitizing allosteric agonists or as nondesensitizing (type II) PAMs are cis-cis-diastereoisomers, whereas all of the NAMs, SAMs, and type I PAMs are cis-trans-diastereoisomers. Our data illustrate the remarkable pharmacological diversity of allosteric modulators acting on nAChRs. PMID:25516597

  7. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are important targets for alcohol reward and dependence.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jie; Gao, Ming; Taylor, Devin H

    2014-03-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are important targets for alcohol reward and dependence. Alcoholism is a serious public health problem and has been identified as the third major cause of preventable mortality in the world. Worldwide, about 2 billion people consume alcohol, with 76.3 million having diagnosable alcohol use disorders. Alcohol is currently responsible for the death of 4% of adults worldwide (about 2.5 million deaths each year), and this number will be significantly increased by 2020 unless effective action is taken. Alcohol is the most commonly abused substance by humans. Ethanol (EtOH) is the intoxicating agent in alcoholic drinks that can lead to abuse and dependence. Although it has been extensively studied, the mechanisms of alcohol reward and dependence are still poorly understood. The major reason is that, unlike other addictive drugs (eg, morphine, cocaine or nicotine) that have specific molecular targets, EtOH affects much wider neuronal functions. These functions include phospholipid membranes, various ion channels and receptors, synaptic and network functions, and intracellular signaling molecules. The major targets in the brain that mediate EtOH's effects remain unclear. This knowledge gap results in a therapeutic barrier in the treatment of alcoholism. Interestingly, alcohol and nicotine are often co-abused, which suggests that neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), the molecular targets for nicotine, may also contribute to alcohol's abusive properties. Here, we briefly summarize recent lines of evidence showing how EtOH modulates nAChRs in the mesolimbic pathway, which provides a perspective that nAChRs are important targets mediating alcohol abuse.

  8. Facilitation of memory storage by the acetylcholine M2 muscarinic receptor antagonist AF-DX 116.

    PubMed

    Baratti, C M; Opezzo, J W; Kopf, S R

    1993-07-01

    Post-training administration of the acetylcholine muscarinic M2 presynaptic receptor antagonist AF-DX 116 (0.1-10.0 mg/kg, ip), facilitated 48 h retention, in male Swiss mice, of a one-trial step-through inhibitory avoidance task. The dose-response curve was an inverted U. AF-DX 116 did not increase the retention latencies of mice that had not received a footshock during training. The influence of AF-DX 116 (1 mg/kg, ip) on retention was time-dependent, which suggests that the drug facilitated memory storage. The memory facilitation induced by AF-DX 116 (1 mg/kg, ip) was prevented by atropine (0.5 mg/kg, ip) administered after training, but 10 min prior to AF-DX 116 treatment. In contrast, neither methylatropine (0.5 mg/kg, ip), a peripherally acting muscarinic receptor blocker, nor mecamylamine (5 mg/kg, ip) or hexamethonium (5 mg/kg, ip), two cholinergic nicotinic receptor antagonists, prevented the effects of post-training AF-DX 116 on retention. Low subeffective doses of the central acting anticholinesterase physostigmine (35 micrograms/kg, ip), administered immediately after training, and AF-DX 116 (0.1 mg/kg, ip), given 10 min after training, acted synergistically to improve retention. The effects of AF-DX 116 (0.1 mg/kg, ip) were not influenced by the peripherally acting anticholinesterase neostigmine (35 micrograms/kg, ip). Considered together, these findings suggest that the activation of a muscarinic cholinergic presynaptic inhibitory mechanism, probably by increasing brain acetylcholine release, may modulate the activity of post-training processes involved in memory storage.

  9. Contractions of the mouse prostate elicited by acetylcholine are mediated by M(3) muscarinic receptors.

    PubMed

    White, Carl W; Short, Jennifer L; Haynes, John M; Matsui, Minoru; Ventura, Sabatino

    2011-12-01

    Increased smooth muscle tone in the human prostate contributes to the symptoms associated with benign prostatic hyperplasia. In the mouse prostate gland, cholinergic innervation is responsible for a component of the nerve-mediated contractile response. This study investigates the muscarinic receptor subtype responsible for the cholinergic contractile response in the mouse prostate gland. To characterize the muscarinic receptor subtype, mouse prostates taken from wild-type or M(3) muscarinic receptor knockout mice were mounted in organ baths. The isometric force that tissues developed in response to electrical-field stimulation or exogenously applied cholinergic agonists in the presence or absence of a range of muscarinic receptor antagonists was evaluated. Carbachol elicited reproducible and concentration-dependent contractions of the isolated mouse prostate, which were antagonized by the presence of muscarinic receptor antagonists. Calculation of antagonist affinities (pA(2) values) indicated a rank order of antagonist potencies in the mouse prostate of: darifenacin (9.08) = atropine (9.07) = 1,1-dimethyl-4-diphenylacetoxypiperidinium iodide (9.02) > cyclohexyl-hydroxy-phenyl-(3-piperidin-1-ylpropyl)silane (7.85) > cyclohexyl-(4-fluorophenyl)-hydroxy-(3-piperidin-1-ylpropyl)silane (7.39) > himbacine (7.19) > pirenzipine (6.88) > methoctramine (6.20). Furthermore, genetic deletion of the M(3) muscarinic receptor inhibited prostatic contractions to electrical-field stimulation or exogenous administration of acetylcholine. In this study we identified that the cholinergic component of contraction in the mouse prostate is mediated by the M(3) muscarinic receptor subtype. Pharmacological antagonism of the M(3) muscarinic receptor may be a beneficial additional target for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia in the human prostate gland.

  10. Acetylcholine and muscarinic receptor function in cerebral cortex of diabetic young and old male Wistar rats and the role of muscarinic receptors in calcium release from pancreatic islets.

    PubMed

    Savitha, Balakrishnan; Joseph, Binoy; Peeyush Kumar, T; Paulose, C S

    2010-04-01

    We investigated acetylcholine esterase (AChE) activity, acetylcholine and muscarinic M1, M3 receptors kinetics in the cerebral cortex of young and old streptozotocin induced and insulin treated diabetic rats. The role of muscarinic receptors in intracellular calcium release from pancreatic islets was studied in vitro. Wistar rats of 7 and 90-weeks old were used. All studies were done in cerebral cortex. AChE assay was done by spectrophotometric method. Radioreceptor binding assays were done for Acetylcholine, Muscarinic M1 and M3 receptors using specific ligands. Calcium imaging was done using fluo4-AM in pancreatic cells. Ninety-weeks old control rats showed significantly decreased Vmax and increased Km for AChE compared to 7-weeks old control rats. An increased Vmax observed in both 7 and 90-weeks old diabetic groups with significant decrease in Km. Scatchard analysis using specific agonists showed significant decrease in the B (max) and K (d) of acetylcholine and muscarinic M1 receptors in 90-weeks old control rats compared to 7-weeks old control. Binding studies for M3 receptors showed no significant change compared to 7-weeks old control. Acetylcholine, muscarinic M1 and M3 receptor number significantly increased in 90-weeks old diabetic rat groups compared to their respective controls. Insulin treatment significantly reversed the binding parameters to near control compared to diabetic group. In vitro studies showed that acetylcholine through muscarinic M1 and M3 receptors' stimulated calcium release from the pancreatic islets. Thus our studies suggest that Insulin signaling play an important part in differentially regulating pancreatic cholinergic activity, and the diabetes mediated cortical dysfunctions with age.

  11. Autocrine activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors contributes to Ca2+ spikes in mouse myotubes during myogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Bandi, Elena; Bernareggi, Annalisa; Grandolfo, Micaela; Mozzetta, Chiara; Augusti-Tocco, Gabriella; Ruzzier, Fabio; Lorenzon, Paola

    2005-01-01

    It is widely accepted that nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) channel activity controls myoblast fusion into myotubes during myogenesis. In this study we explored the possible role of nAChR channels after cell fusion in a murine cell model. Using videoimaging techniques we showed that embryonic muscle nAChR channel openings contribute to the spontaneous transients of intracellular concentration of Ca2+ ([Ca2+]i) and to twitches characteristic of developing myotubes before innervation. Moreover, we observed a choline acetyltransferase immunoreactivity in the myotubes and we detected an acetylcholine-like compound in the extracellular solution. Therefore, we suggest that the autocrine activation of nAChR channels gives rise to [Ca2+]i spikes and contractions. Spontaneous openings of the nAChR channels may be an alternative, although less efficient, mechanism. We report also that blocking the nAChRs causes a significant reduction in cell survival, detectable as a decreased number of myotubes in culture. This led us to hypothesize a possible functional role for the autocrine activation of the nAChRs. By triggering mechanical activity, such activation could represent a strategy to ensure the trophism of myotubes in the absence of nerves. PMID:16037088

  12. Procaine rapidly inactivates acetylcholine receptors from Torpedo and competes with agonist for inhibition sites

    SciTech Connect

    Forman, S.A.; Miller, K.W. )

    1989-02-21

    The relationship between the high-affinity procaine channel inhibition site and the agonist self-inhibition site on acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) from Torpedo electroplaque was investigated by using rapid {sup 86}Rb{sup +} quenched-flux assays at 4 {degree}C in native AChR-rich vesicles on which 50-60% of ACh activation sites were blocked with {alpha}-bungarotoxin ({alpha}-BTX). In the presence of channel-activating acetylcholine (ACh) concentrations alone, AChR undergoes one phase of inactivation in under a second. Addition of procaine produces two-phase inactivation similar to that seen with self-inhibiting ACh concentrations rapid inactivation complete in 30-75 ms is followed by fast desensitization at the same k{sub d} observed without procaine. The dependence of k{sub r} on (procaine) is consistent with a bimolecular association between procaine and its AChR site. Inhibition of AChR function by mixtures of procaine plus self-inhibiting concentrations of ACh or suberyldicholine was studied by reducing the level of {alpha}-BTX block in vesicles. The data support a mechanism where procaine binds preferentially to the open-channel AChR state, since no procaine-induced inactivation is observed without agonist and k{sub r}'s dependence on (ACh) in channel-activating range closely parallels that of {sup 86}Rb{sup +} flux response to ACh.

  13. 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.

  14. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing alpha 7 subunits on rat cortical neurons do not undergo long-lasting inactivation even when up-regulated by chronic nicotine exposure.

    PubMed

    Kawai, H; Berg, D K

    2001-09-01

    Chronic exposure to (-)nicotine has been widely reported to up-regulate nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on neurons and induce long-term inactivation as a possible cause. Nicotinic receptors containing alpha 7 subunits are among the most abundant in brain and influence diverse cellular events. Whole-cell patch clamp recording from embryonic rat cortical neurons in culture was used to identify responses from alpha 7-containing receptors. Immunochemical staining for glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) indicated that both GABAergic and non-GABAergic neurons expressed the receptors. Exposure to micromolar concentrations of nicotine for 1-4 days caused up-regulation of the receptors as measured by [alpha-(125)I]-bungarotoxin binding. Carbachol produced the same up-regulation, and cell counts demonstrated that neuronal survival was unchanged. The up-regulation was accompanied by an increased whole-cell response; no evidence was found for long-lasting inactivation. Autonomic alpha 7-containing receptors also avoided long-lasting inactivation, even though the receptors were down-regulated by nicotine. Blocking protein synthesis or protein glycosylation prevented receptor up-regulation on cortical neurons, suggesting that new synthesis was required. No evidence was found for a pre-existing intracellular pool that supplied receptors to the surface. The results indicate that alpha 7-containing receptors differ from other receptor subtypes in their regulation by nicotine and demonstrate further that long-lasting inactivation is not an obligatory requirement for up-regulation in this case.

  15. 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...

  16. 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...

  17. Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Transactivation Is Required for Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase Activation by Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors in HaCaT Keratinocytes

    PubMed Central

    Ockenga, Wymke; Kühne, Sina; Bocksberger, Simone; Banning, Antje; Tikkanen, Ritva

    2014-01-01

    Non-neuronal acetylcholine plays a substantial role in the human skin by influencing adhesion, migration, proliferation and differentiation of keratinocytes. These processes are regulated by the Mitogen-Activated Protein (MAP) kinase cascade. Here we show that in HaCaT keratinocytes all five muscarinic receptor subtypes are expressed, but M1 and M3 are the subtypes involved in mitogenic signaling. Stimulation with the cholinergic agonist carbachol leads to activation of the MAP kinase extracellular signal regulated kinase, together with the protein kinase Akt. The activation is fully dependent on the transactivation of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), which even appears to be the sole pathway for the muscarinic receptors to facilitate MAP kinase activation in HaCaT cells. The transactivation pathway involves a triple-membrane-passing process, based on activation of matrix metalloproteases, and extracellular ligand release; whereas phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase, Src family kinases or protein kinase C do not appear to be involved in MAP kinase activation. Furthermore, phosphorylation, ubiquitination and endocytosis of the EGF receptor after cholinergic transactivation are different from that induced by a direct stimulation with EGF, suggesting that ligands other than EGF itself mediate the cholinergic transactivation. PMID:25421240

  18. Structure of acetylcholine receptor dimer determined by neutron scattering and electron microscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Wise, D.S.; Schoenborn, B.P.; Karlin, A.

    1981-04-10

    Previous work has shown that the predominant native form of the acetylcholine receptor from the electric tissue of Torpedo californica is a dimer of M/sub r/ = 500,000, cross-linked by a disulfide bond between the largest (delta) of the five chains (..cap alpha../sub 2/..beta gamma..delta) that comprise the monomer. Small-angle neutron scattering of purified receptor dimer in Triton X-100 solution containing 18% D/sub 2/O, in which the Triton X-100 is contrast-matched, yields a radius of gyration of the dimer of 66 A. Based on the assumptions that the dimer is symmetrical and that the radius of gyration of the monomer does not change in forming dimer, this value, together with the radius of gyration of the receptor monomer (46 A), determined previously, allows the calculation of the distance separating the centers of neutron scattering density of monomers in a dimer; the result is 96 A. Electron microscopy of negatively stained dimers permits an independent measurement of the distance between the apparent centers of mass of the monomers; the average is 96 A, in agreement with the result of the neutron scattering analysis. The electron micrographs of dimer also permit the location of the delta chains at the region of contact of the monomers. A model for the receptor dimer consistent with all available structural information is presented.

  19. Agonist mediated conformational changes of solubilized calf forebrain muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Vanderheyden, P; Andre, C; de Backer, J P; Vauquelin, G

    1984-10-01

    Muscarinic receptors in calf forebrain membranes can be identified by the specific binding of the radiolabelled antagonist [3H]dexetimide. These receptors (2.8 pM/mg protein) comprise two non-interconvertible subpopulations with respectively high and low agonist affinity but with the same antagonist affinity. For all the agonists tested the low affinity sites represent 85 +/- 5% of the total receptor population. 0.5% Digitonin solubilized extracts contain 0.8 pM muscarinic receptor/mg protein. In contrast with the membranes, these extracts contain only sites with low agonist affinity. The alkylating reagent N-ethylmaleimide causes an increase of the acetylcholine affinity for the low affinity sites in membranes as well as for the solubilized sites. This effect is time dependent until a maximal 3-fold increase in affinity is attained. The rate of N-ethylmaleimide action is enhanced by the concomitant presence of agonists. In contrast, N-ethylmaleimide does not affect antagonist binding. This suggests that agonists mediate a conformational change of both the membrane bound low affinity muscarinic sites and of the solubilized sites, resulting in their increased susceptibility towards NEM alkylation. PMID:6487351

  20. Procognitive and neuroprotective activity of a novel alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist for treatment of neurodegenerative and cognitive disorders.

    PubMed

    Roncarati, Renza; Scali, Carla; Comery, Thomas A; Grauer, Steven M; Aschmi, Suzan; Bothmann, Hendrick; Jow, Brian; Kowal, Dianne; Gianfriddo, Marco; Kelley, Cody; Zanelli, Ugo; Ghiron, Chiara; Haydar, Simon; Dunlop, John; Terstappen, Georg C

    2009-05-01

    The alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) is a promising target for treatment of cognitive dysfunction associated with Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. Here, we report the pharmacological properties of 5-morpholin-4-yl-pentanoic acid (4-pyridin-3-yl-phenyl)-amide [SEN12333 (WAY-317538)], a novel selective agonist of alpha7 nAChR. SEN12333 shows high affinity for the rat alpha7 receptor expressed in GH4C1 cells (K(i) = 260 nM) and acts as full agonist in functional Ca(2+) flux studies (EC(50) = 1.6 microM). In whole-cell patch-clamp recordings, SEN12333 activated peak currents and maximal total charges similar to acetylcholine (EC(50) = 12 microM). The compound did not show agonist activity at other nicotinic receptors tested and acted as a weak antagonist at alpha3-containing receptors. SEN12333 treatment (3 mg/kg i.p.) improved episodic memory in a novel object recognition task in rats in conditions of spontaneous forgetting as well as cognitive disruptions induced via glutamatergic [5H-dibenzo[a,d]cyclohepten-5,10-imine (dizocilpine maleate); MK-801] or cholinergic (scopolamine) mechanisms. This improvement was blocked by the alpha7-selective antagonist methyllycaconitine, indicating that it is mediated by alpha7 activation. SEN12333 also prevented a scopolamine-induced deficit in a passive avoidance task. In models targeting other cognitive domains, including attention and perceptual processing, SEN12333 normalized the apomorphine-induced deficit of prepulse inhibition. Neuroprotection of SEN12333 was demonstrated in quisqualate-lesioned animals in which treatment with SEN12333 (3 mg/kg/day i.p.) resulted in a significant protection of choline acetyltransferase-positive neurons in the lesioned hemisphere. Cumulatively, our results demonstrate that the novel alpha7 nAChR agonist SEN12333 has procognitive and neuroprotective properties, further demonstrating utility of alpha7 agonists for treatment of neurodegenerative and cognitive disorders.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:27226072

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

    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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Synthesis and Pharmacological Evaluation of DHβE Analogues as Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Antagonists

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Dihydro-β-erythroidine (DHβE) is a member of the Erythrina family of alkaloids and a potent competitive antagonist of the α4β2-subtype of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Guided by an X-ray structure of DHβE in complex with an ACh binding protein, we detail the design, synthesis, and pharmacological characterization of a series of DHβE analogues in which two of the four rings in the natural product has been excluded. We found that the direct analogue of DHβE maintains affinity for the α4β2-subtype, but further modifications of the simplified analogues were detrimental to their activities on the nAChRs. PMID:25050162

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:27226072

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

    PubMed Central

    Ashcom, J D; Stiles, B G

    1997-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-20

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

  9. Mechanistic insights into allosteric structure-function relationships at the M1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Abdul-Ridha, Alaa; Lane, J Robert; Mistry, Shailesh N; López, Laura; Sexton, Patrick M; Scammells, Peter J; Christopoulos, Arthur; Canals, Meritxell

    2014-11-28

    Benzylquinolone carboxylic acid (BQCA) is the first highly selective positive allosteric modulator (PAM) for the M1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR), but it possesses low affinity for the allosteric site on the receptor. More recent drug discovery efforts identified 3-((1S,2S)-2-hydroxycyclohexyl)-6-((6-(1-methyl-1H-pyrazol-4-yl)pyridin-3-yl)methyl)benzo[h]quinazolin-4(3H)-one (referred to herein as benzoquinazolinone 12) as a more potent M1 mAChR PAM with a structural ancestry originating from BQCA and related compounds. In the current study, we optimized the synthesis of and fully characterized the pharmacology of benzoquinazolinone 12, finding that its improved potency derived from a 50-fold increase in allosteric site affinity as compared with BQCA, while retaining a similar level of positive cooperativity with acetylcholine. We then utilized site-directed mutagenesis and molecular modeling to validate the allosteric binding pocket we previously described for BQCA as a shared site for benzoquinazolinone 12 and provide a molecular basis for its improved activity at the M1 mAChR. This includes a key role for hydrophobic and polar interactions with residues Tyr-179, in the second extracellular loop (ECL2) and Trp-400(7.35) in transmembrane domain (TM) 7. Collectively, this study highlights how the properties of affinity and cooperativity can be differentially modified on a common structural scaffold and identifies molecular features that can be exploited to tailor the development of M1 mAChR-targeting PAMs. PMID:25326383

  10. Mechanistic Insights into Allosteric Structure-Function Relationships at the M1 Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor*

    PubMed Central

    Abdul-Ridha, Alaa; Lane, J. Robert; Mistry, Shailesh N.; López, Laura; Sexton, Patrick M.; Scammells, Peter J.; Christopoulos, Arthur; Canals, Meritxell

    2014-01-01

    Benzylquinolone carboxylic acid (BQCA) is the first highly selective positive allosteric modulator (PAM) for the M1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR), but it possesses low affinity for the allosteric site on the receptor. More recent drug discovery efforts identified 3-((1S,2S)-2-hydroxycyclohexyl)-6-((6-(1-methyl-1H-pyrazol-4-yl)pyridin-3-yl)methyl)benzo[h]quinazolin-4(3H)-one (referred to herein as benzoquinazolinone 12) as a more potent M1 mAChR PAM with a structural ancestry originating from BQCA and related compounds. In the current study, we optimized the synthesis of and fully characterized the pharmacology of benzoquinazolinone 12, finding that its improved potency derived from a 50-fold increase in allosteric site affinity as compared with BQCA, while retaining a similar level of positive cooperativity with acetylcholine. We then utilized site-directed mutagenesis and molecular modeling to validate the allosteric binding pocket we previously described for BQCA as a shared site for benzoquinazolinone 12 and provide a molecular basis for its improved activity at the M1 mAChR. This includes a key role for hydrophobic and polar interactions with residues Tyr-179, in the second extracellular loop (ECL2) and Trp-4007.35 in transmembrane domain (TM) 7. Collectively, this study highlights how the properties of affinity and cooperativity can be differentially modified on a common structural scaffold and identifies molecular features that can be exploited to tailor the development of M1 mAChR-targeting PAMs. PMID:25326383

  11. The relationship of the postsynaptic 43K protein to acetylcholine receptors in receptor clusters isolated from cultured rat myotubes.

    PubMed

    Bloch, R J; Froehner, S C

    1987-03-01

    We have examined the relationship of acetylcholine receptors (AChR) to the Mr 43,000 receptor-associated protein (43K) in the AChR clusters of cultured rat myotubes. Indirect immunofluorescence revealed that the 43K protein was concentrated at the AChR domains of the receptor clusters in intact rat myotubes, in myotube fragments, and in clusters that had been purified approximately 100-fold by extraction with saponin. The association of the 43K protein with clustered AChR was not affected by buffers of high or low ionic strength, by alkaline pHs up to 10, or by chymotrypsin at 10 micrograms/ml. However, the 43K protein was removed from clusters with lithium diiodosalicylate or at alkaline pH (greater than 10). Upon extraction of 43K, several changes were observed in the AChR population. Receptors redistributed in the plane of the muscle membrane in alkali-extracted samples. The number of binding sites accessible to an anti-AChR monoclonal antibody directed against cytoplasmic epitopes (88B) doubled. Receptors became more susceptible to digestion by chymotrypsin, which destroyed the binding sites for the 88B antibody only after 43K was extracted. These results suggest that in isolated AChR clusters the 43K protein covers part of the cytoplasmic domain of AChR and may contribute to the unique distribution of this membrane protein.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  13. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Marks, Michael J; Grady, Sharon R; Salminen, Outi; Paley, Miranda A; Wageman, Charles R; McIntosh, J Michael; Whiteaker, Paul

    2014-07-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) of the α6β2* subtype (where *indicates the possible presence of additional subunits) are prominently expressed on dopaminergic neurons. Because of this, their role in tobacco use and nicotine dependence has received much attention. Previous studies have demonstrated that α6β2*-nAChR are down-regulated following chronic nicotine exposure (unlike other subtypes that have been investigated - most prominently α4β2* nAChR). This study examines, for the first time, effects across a comprehensive chronic nicotine dose range. Chronic nicotine dose-responses and quantitative ligand-binding autoradiography were used to define nicotine sensitivity of changes in α4β2*-nAChR and α6β2*-nAChR expression. α6β2*-nAChR down-regulation by chronic nicotine exposure in dopaminergic and optic-tract nuclei was ≈three-fold more sensitive than up-regulation of α4β2*-nAChR. In contrast, nAChR-mediated [(3) H]-dopamine release from dopamine-terminal region synaptosomal preparations changed only in response to chronic treatment with high nicotine doses, whereas dopaminergic parameters (transporter expression and activity, dopamine receptor expression) were largely unchanged. Functional measures in olfactory tubercle preparations were made for the first time; both nAChR expression levels and nAChR-mediated functional measures changed differently between striatum and olfactory tubercles. These results show that functional changes measured using synaptosomal [(3) H]-DA release are primarily owing to changes in nAChR, rather than in dopaminergic, function. This study examined dose-response relationships for murine α6β2*-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) down-regulation by chronic nicotine treatment. The ID50 value for α6β2* down-regulation (35 nM) is ≈ 3x lower than the ED50 value for α4β2* nAChR up-regulation (95 nM), both well within the range reached by human smokers. Chronic nicotine treatment altered α6β2*- and α4

  15. Ameliorating effects of tropisetron on dopaminergic disruption of prepulse inhibition via the alpha(7) nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in Wistar rats.

    PubMed

    Kohnomi, Shuntaro; Suemaru, Katsuya; Goda, Mitsunori; Choshi, Tominari; Hibino, Satoshi; Kawasaki, Hiromu; Araki, Hiroaki

    2010-09-24

    Nicotine has ameliorating effects on sensorimotor gating deficits in schizophrenia. We have shown that nicotine ameliorated disruption of prepulse inhibition (PPI) via the alpha(7) nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) in Wistar rats. The 5-HT(3) receptor antagonist tropisetron was recently found to be an alpha(7) nAChR partial agonist. We initially investigated the effects of tropisetron on disruption of PPI induced by phencyclidine (PCP) (2mg/kg) or apomorphine (1mg/kg). Tropisetron had no effect on the disruption of PPI induced by PCP, but ameliorated the disruption by apomorphine. The ameliorating effect of tropisetron was antagonized by methyllycaconitine (2 or 5mg/kg), a partially selective alpha(7) nAChR antagonist. Next, to find the action site of tropisetron, we examined c-Fos protein expression in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), dorsolateral striatum (DLst) and ventral tegmental area (VTA). Tropisetron alone did not change the number of c-Fos-positive cells, whereas apomorphine increased the number of positive cells in the NAc and DLst. Tropisetron administration followed by apomorphine administration decreased the number of positive cells in the VTA compared with the apomorphine-alone group. These results suggest that tropisetron has an ameliorating effect on the sensorimotor gating deficits via the alpha(7) nAChR, and that one possible site of its action is the VTA.

  16. Highly Selective and Sensitive Detection of Acetylcholine Using Receptor-Modified Single-Walled Carbon Nanotube Sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Shihong; Kim, Byeongju; Song, Hyun Seok; Jin, Hye Jun; Park, Eun Jin; Lee, Sang Hun; Lee, Byung Yang; Park, Tai Hyun; Hong, Seunghun

    2015-03-01

    Acetylcholine (ACh) is a neurotransmitter in a human central nervous system and is related to various neural functions such as memory, learning and muscle contractions. Dysfunctional ACh regulations in a brain can induce several neuropsychiatric diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and myasthenia gravis. In researching such diseases, it is important to measure the concentration of ACh in the extracellular fluid of the brain. Herein, we developed a highly sensitive and selective ACh sensor based on single-walled carbon nanotube-field effect transistors (swCNT-FETs). In our work, M1 mAChR protein, an ACh receptor, was expressed in E.coli and coated on swCNT-FETs with lipid membranes. Here, the binding of ACh onto the receptors could be detected by monitoring the change of electrical currents in the underlying swCNT-FETs, allowing the real-time detection of ACh at a 100 pM concentration. Furthermore, our sensor could selectively detect ACh from other neurotransmitters. This is the first report of the real-time sensing of ACh utilizing specific binding between the ACh and M1 mAChR, and it may lead to breakthroughs in various biomedical applications such as drug screening and disease diagnosis.

  17. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: a comparison of the nAChRs of Caenorhabditis elegans and parasitic nematodes.

    PubMed

    Holden-Dye, Lindy; Joyner, Michelle; O'Connor, Vincent; Walker, Robert J

    2013-12-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) play a key role in the normal physiology of nematodes and provide an established target site for anthelmintics. The free-living nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans, has a large number of nAChR subunit genes in its genome and so provides an experimental model for testing novel anthelmintics which act at these sites. However, many parasitic nematodes lack specific genes present in C. elegans, and so care is required in extrapolating from studies using C. elegans to the situation in other nematodes. In this review the properties of C. elegans nAChRs are reviewed and compared to those of parasitic nematodes. This forms the basis for a discussion of the possible subunit composition of nAChRs from different species of parasitic nematodes. Currently our knowledge on this is largely based on studies using heterologous expression and pharmacological analysis of receptor subunits in Xenopus laevis oocytes. It is concluded that more information is required regarding the subunit composition and pharmacology of endogenous nAChRs in parasitic nematodes. PMID:23500392

  18. Variation in the α 5 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit gene predicts cigarette smoking intensity as a function of nicotine content.

    PubMed

    Macqueen, D A; Heckman, B W; Blank, M D; Janse Van Rensburg, K; Park, J Y; Drobes, D J; Evans, D E

    2014-02-01

    A single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the α5 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit gene, rs16969968, has been repeatedly associated with both smoking and respiratory health phenotypes. However, there remains considerable debate as to whether associations with lung cancer are mediated through effects on smoking behavior. Preclinical studies suggest that α5 receptor subunit expression and function may have a direct role in nicotine titration during self administration. The present study investigated the association of CHRNA5 polymorphisms and smoking topography in 66 smokers asked to smoke four nicotine-containing (nicotine yield=0.60 mg) and four placebo (nicotine yield <0.05 mg) cigarettes, during separate experimental sessions. Genotype at rs16969968 predicted nicotine titration, with homozygotes for the major allele (G:G) displaying significantly reduced puff volume in response to nicotine, whereas minor allele carriers (A:G or A:A) produced equivalent puff volumes for placebo and nicotine cigarettes. The present results suggest that puff volume may be a more powerful objective phenotype of smoking behavior than self-reported cigarettes per day and nicotine dependence. Further, these results suggest that the association between rs16969968 and lung cancer may be mediated by the quantity of smoke inhaled.

  19. Stimulation of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor regulates glutamate transporter GLAST via basic fibroblast growth factor production in cultured cortical microglia.

    PubMed

    Morioka, Norimitsu; Harano, Sakura; Tokuhara, Masato; Idenoshita, Yuko; Zhang, Fang Fang; Hisaoka-Nakashima, Kazue; Nakata, Yoshihiro

    2015-11-01

    The α7 nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptor expressed in microglia has a crucial role in neuroprotection. Simulation of α7 nACh receptor leads to increased expression of glutamate/aspartate transporter (GLAST), which in turn decreases synaptic glutamate levels. However, the upregulation of GLAST in cultured rat cortical microglia appears long after (over 18 h) stimulation of the α7 nACh receptor with nicotine. Thus, the current study elucidated the pathway responsible for the induction of GLAST expression in cultured cortical microglia. Nicotine-induced GLAST mRNA expression was significantly inhibited by cycloheximide pretreatment, indicating that a protein intermediary, such as a growth factor, is required for GLAST expression. The expression of fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) mRNA in cortical microglia was significantly increased 6 and 12h after treatment with nicotine, and this increase was potently inhibited by pretreatment with methyllycaconitine, a selective α7 nACh receptor antagonist. The treatment with nicotine also significantly increased FGF-2 protein expression. Furthermore, treatment with recombinant FGF-2 increased GLAST mRNA, protein expression and (14)C-glutamate uptake, a functional measurement of GLAST activity. Conversely, pretreatment with PD173074, an inhibitor of FGF receptor (FGFR) tyrosine kinase, significantly prevented the nicotine-induced expression of GLAST mRNA, its protein and (14)C-glutamate uptake. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction confirmed FGFR1 mRNA expression was confined to cultured cortical microglia. Together, the current findings demonstrate that the neuroprotective effect of activation of microglial α7 nACh receptors could be due to the expression of FGF-2, which in turn increases GLAST expression, thereby clearing glutamate from synapse and decreasing glutamate neurotransmission.

  20. 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

  1. Acetylcholine receptors and sodium channels in denervated and botulinum-toxin-treated adult rat muscle.

    PubMed Central

    Bambrick, L; Gordon, T

    1987-01-01

    1. The number of acetylcholine (ACh) receptors and Na channels was measured in adult rat hind-limb muscles after denervation or injection of botulinum toxin type A (BoTX), using specific binding of radiolabelled neurotoxins. 2. Denervation by sciatic nerve section increased the number of [125I]iodo-alpha-bungarotoxin ([125I]BTX) binding sites from low, unmeasurable levels to 39 +/- 3 fmol of toxin bound per milligram muscle protein at 21 days. 3. Subcutaneous injection of BoTX produced complete neuromuscular blockade for 11-14 days over which time the number of [125I]BTX binding sites increased with the same time course and to the same extent as following denervation. 4. Neither denervation nor BoTX treatment significantly altered the number of tritiated saxitoxin ([3H]STX) binding sites from normal values of 7.8 fmol/mg muscle weight or 57 +/- 3 fmol/mg homogenate protein. This may, however, correspond to a lower density of [3H]STX sites in the muscle membrane. 5. It was concluded that neuromuscular blockade with BoTX is equivalent to denervation in its effects on synthesis of ACh receptors. Numbers of Na channels are more stable than ACh receptors but may also be modulated by neuromuscular activity. PMID:2442368

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

    SciTech Connect

    Higgins, L.S.

    1988-01-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-08-01

    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.

  4. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-18

    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.

  6. Assessing the lipid requirements of the Torpedo californica nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Hamouda, Ayman K; Sanghvi, Mitesh; Sauls, Daniel; Machu, Tina K; Blanton, Michael P

    2006-04-01

    The lipid requirements of the Torpedo californica nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) were assessed by reconstituting purified receptors into lipid vesicles of defined composition and by using photolabeling with 3-trifluoromethyl-3-(m-[125I]iodophenyl)diazirine ([125I]TID) to determine functionality. Earlier studies demonstrated that nAChRs reconstituted into membranes containing phosphatidylcholine (PC), the anionic lipid phosphatidic acid (PA), and cholesterol (CH) are particularly effective at stabilizing the nAChR in the resting (closed) state that is capable of undergoing agonist-induced conformational transitions (i.e., functionality). The present studies demonstrate that (1) there is no obligatory requirement for PC, (2) increasing the CH content serves to increase the degree to which nAChRs are stabilized in the resting state, and this effect saturates at approximately 35 mol % (molar lipid percentage), and (3) the effect of increasing levels of PA saturates at approximately 12 mol % and in the absence of PA nAChRs are stabilized in the desensitized state (i.e., nonfunctional). Native Torpedo membranes contain approximately 35 mol % CH but less than 1 mol % PA, suggesting that other anionic lipids may substitute for PA. We report that (1) phosphatidylserine (PS) and phosphatidylinositol (PI), anionic lipids that are abundant in native Torpedo membranes, also stabilize the receptor in the resting state although with reduced efficacy (approximately 50-60%) compared to PA, and (2) for nAChRs reconstituted into PA/CH membranes at different lipid-protein molar ratios, receptor functionality decreases rapidly below approximately 65 lipids per receptor. Collectively, these results are consistent with a functional requirement of a single shell of lipids surrounding the nAChR and specific anionic lipid- and sterol (CH)-protein interactions.

  7. 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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  9. 6-bromohypaphorine from marine nudibranch mollusk Hermissenda crassicornis is an agonist of human α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-01

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

  10. 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.

  11. A statistical analysis of acetylcholine receptor activation in Xenopus myocytes: stepwise versus concerted models of gating.

    PubMed Central

    Auerbach, A

    1993-01-01

    1. The kinetic properties of single channel currents from fetal-type acetylcholine receptors in embryonic Xenopus myocytes (60 h old) have been analysed by a maximum-likelihood method. 2. At very high acetylcholine (ACh) concentrations (up to 5 mM) the effective opening rate appears to saturate at approximately 30,000 s-1. 3. The kinetics were analysed according to the standard concerted scheme that postulates a single channel-opening conformational change after two agonists are bound, and a rarely invoked stepwise scheme that postulates semi-independent conformational changes in two distinct gating domains. Both models assume that agonist cannot escape from a channel (or domain) that is in its activated conformation. 4. With either activation scheme the kinetic analyses indicate that ACh binds at a rate of approximately 2 x 10(8) s-1 M-1 and dissociates from doubly liganded receptors at a rate of approximately 28,000 s-1, and that the activation process is asymmetric, i.e. the binding (concerted model) or gating (stepwise model) transitions are not equal and independent. 5. In eighteen of twenty-seven file-by-file comparisons, the likelihood of the stepwise model was greater than that of the concerted model. In seven such comparisons, the likelihood of the concerted model was greater than that of the stepwise model, and in two there was no difference. Log likelihood ratio distributions were obtained from three files (those with the most events) by multiple cycles of resampling and fitting. The means of these distributions were significantly greater than zero, indicating that the stepwise scheme was as good as, or better than, the concerted scheme in describing receptor activation. 6. According to the stepwise view, two binding sites must be occupied and two 'gates' activated for conduction to occur. Although equivalent binding is not an essential aspect of stepwise activation, the binding sites can be identical and have a low affinity for ACh (Kd approximately 130

  12. Transmembrane topography of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor: immunochemical tests contradict theoretical predictions based on hydrophobicity profiles.

    PubMed

    Ratnam, M; Nguyen, D L; Rivier, J; Sargent, P B; Lindstrom, J

    1986-05-01

    In our preceding paper [Ratnam, M., Sargent, P. B., Sarin, V., Fox, J. L., Le Nguyen, D., Rivier, J., Criado, M., & Lindstrom, J. (1986) Biochemistry (preceding paper in this issue)], we presented results from peptide mapping studies of purified subunits of the Torpedo acetylcholine receptor which suggested that the sequence beta 429-441 is on the cytoplasmic surface of the receptor. Since this finding contradicts earlier theoretical models of the transmembrane structure of the receptor, which placed this sequence of the beta subunit on the extracellular surface, we investigated the location of the corresponding sequence (389-408) and adjacent sequences of the alpha subunit by a more direct approach. We synthesized peptides including the sequences alpha 330-346, alpha 349-364, alpha 360-378, alpha 379-385, and alpha 389-408 and shorter parts of these peptides. These peptides corresponded to a highly immunogenic region, and by using 125I-labeled peptides as antigens, we were able to detect in our library of monoclonal antibodies to alpha subunits between two and six which bound specifically to each of these peptides, except alpha 389-408. We obtained antibodies specific for alpha 389-408 both from antisera against the denatured alpha subunit and from antisera made against the peptide. These antibodies were specific to alpha 389-396. In binding assays, antibodies specific for all of these five peptides bound to receptor-rich membrane vesicles only after permeabilization of the vesicles to permit access of the antibodies to the cytoplasmic surface of the receptors, suggesting that the receptor sequences which bound these antibodies were located on the intracellular side of the membrane. Electron microscopy using colloidal gold to visualize the bound antibodies was used to conclusively demonstrate that all of these sequences are exposed on the cytoplasmic surface of the receptor. These results, along with our previous demonstration that the C-terminal 10 amino acids of

  13. 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

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

    PubMed

    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

  15. Kinetic properties and open probability of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Pesti, Krisztina; Szabo, Anett K; Mike, Arpad; Vizi, E Sylvester

    2014-06-01

    The alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) has some peculiar kinetic properties. From the literature of α7 nAChR-mediated currents we concluded that experimentally measured kinetic properties reflected properties of the solution exchange system, rather than genuine kinetic properties of the receptors. We also concluded that all experimentally measured EC50 values for agonists must inherently be inaccurate. The aim of this study was to assess the undistorted kinetic properties of α7 nAChRs, and to construct an improved kinetic model, which can also serve as a basis of modeling the effect of the positive allosteric modulator PNU-120596, as it is described in the accompanying paper. Agonist-evoked currents were recorded from GH4C1 cells stably transfected with pCEP4/rat α7 nAChR using patch-clamp and fast solution exchange. We used two approaches to circumvent the problem of insufficient solution exchange rate: extrapolation and kinetic modeling. First, using different solution exchange rates we recorded evoked currents, and extrapolated their amplitude and kinetics to instantaneous solution exchange. Second, we constructed a kinetic model that reproduced concentration-dependence and solution exchange rate-dependence of receptors, and then we simulated receptor behavior at experimentally unattainably fast solution exchange. We also determined open probabilities during choline-evoked unmodulated and modulated currents using nonstationary fluctuation analysis. The peak open probability of 10 mM choline-evoked currents was 0.033 ± 0.006, while in the presence of choline (10 mM) and PNU-120596 (10 μM), it was increased to 0.599 ± 0.058. Our kinetic model could adequately reproduce low open probability, fast kinetics, fast recovery and solution exchange rate-dependent kinetics. PMID:24486379

  16. 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.

  17. The therapeutic potential of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonists for pain control.

    PubMed

    Decker, M W; Meyer, M D; Sullivan, J P

    2001-10-01

    Due to the limitations of currently available analgesics, a number of novel alternatives are currently under investigation, including neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) agonists. During the 1990s, the discovery of the antinociceptive properties of the potent nAChR agonist epibatidine in rodents sparked interest in the analgesic potential of this class of compounds. Although epibatidine also has several mechanism-related toxicities, the identification of considerable nAChR diversity suggested that the toxicities and therapeutic actions of the compound might be mediated by distinct receptor subtypes. Consistent with this view, a number of novel nAChR agonists with antinociceptive activity and improved safety profiles in preclinical models have now been identified, including A-85380, ABT-594, DBO-83, SIB-1663 and RJR-2403. Of these, ABT-594 is the most advanced and is currently in Phase II clinical evaluation. Nicotinically-mediated antinociception has been demonstrated in a variety of rodent pain models and is likely mediated by the activation of descending inhibitory pathways originating in the brainstem with the predominant high-affinity nicotine site in brain, the alpha4beta2 subtype, playing a critical role. Thus, preclinical findings suggest that nAChR agonists have the potential to be highly efficacious treatments in a variety of pain states. However, clinical proof-of-principle studies will be required to determine if nAChR agonists are active in pathological pain.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1988-08-08

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

  19. Endogenous inhibition of the trigeminally evoked neurotransmission to cardiac vagal neurons by muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Gorini, C; Philbin, K; Bateman, R; Mendelowitz, D

    2010-10-01

    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.

  20. 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.

  1. Electron microscopy of complexes of isolated acetylcholine receptor, biotinyl-toxin, and avidin

    SciTech Connect

    Holtzman, E.; Wise, D.; Wall, J.; Karlin, A.

    1982-01-01

    The principal curarimimetic toxin of Naja naja siamensis derivatized with biothinyl groups binds specifically both to acetylcholine receptor, isolated from Torpedo californica electric tissue, and to avidin. Isolated complexes of receptor monomer or dimer, biotinyl-toxin, and avidin were negatively stained and examined in the scanning transmission electron microscope. We measured the angle made by the radius to each avidin bound at the periphery of a monomeric unit in dimer to the axis connecting the centers of the monomers, starting at the crosslink between the monomers. We infer from the distribution of these angles that one toxin binding site is located in the range of 45/sup 0/ to 85/sup 0/ and another at about 100/sup 0/ further from the crosslink between the monomers. Because it is known that there are two toxin binding sites per monomer, associated with the two ..cap alpha.. chains, the bound avidins presumably point to portions of the ..cap alpha.. chains, indicating their positions relative to that portion of the delta chain located at the crosslink between monomers in dimer.

  2. Muscarinic and Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Agonists and Allosteric Modulators for the Treatment of Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Carrie K; Byun, Nellie; Bubser, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Muscarinic and nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptors (mAChRs and nAChRs) are emerging as important targets for the development of novel treatments for the symptoms associated with schizophrenia. Preclinical and early proof-of-concept clinical studies have provided strong evidence that activators of specific mAChR (M1 and M4) and nAChR (α7 and α2β4) subtypes are effective in animal models of antipsychotic-like activity and/or cognitive enhancement, and in the treatment of positive and cognitive symptoms in patients with schizophrenia. While early attempts to develop selective mAChR and nAChR agonists provided important preliminary findings, these compounds have ultimately failed in clinical development due to a lack of true subtype selectivity and subsequent dose-limiting adverse effects. In recent years, there have been major advances in the discovery of highly selective activators for the different mAChR and nAChR subtypes with suitable properties for optimization as potential candidates for clinical trials. One novel strategy has been to identify ligands that activate a specific receptor subtype through actions at sites that are distinct from the highly conserved ACh-binding site, termed allosteric sites. These allosteric activators, both allosteric agonists and positive allosteric modulators, of mAChR and nAChR subtypes demonstrate unique mechanisms of action and high selectivity in vivo, and may provide innovative treatment strategies for schizophrenia. PMID:21956443

  3. Keratinocyte nicotinic acetylcholine receptor activation modulates early TLR2-mediated wound healing responses.

    PubMed

    Kishibe, Mari; Griffin, Tina M; Radek, Katherine A

    2015-11-01

    The cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway spans several macro- and micro-environments to control inflammation via α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Physiologic inflammation is necessary for normal wound repair and is triggered, in part, via Toll-like receptors (TLRs). Here, we demonstrate that keratinocyte nAChR activation dampens TLR2-mediated migration and pro-inflammatory cytokine and antimicrobial peptide (AMP) production, which is restored by a α7-selective nAChR antagonist. The mechanism of this response occurs by blocking the NF-κB and Erk1/2 pathway during early and late wound healing. In a mouse model of Staphylococcus aureus wound infection, topical nAChR activation reduces wound AMP and TLR2 production to augment bacterial survival in wild-type mice. These findings suggest that aberrant α7 nAChR activation may impair normal wound healing responses, and that pharmacologic administration of topical nAChR antagonists may improve wound healing outcomes in wounds necessitating a more robust inflammatory response.

  4. Thrombin action decreases acetylcholine receptor aggregate number and stability in cultured mouse myotubes.

    PubMed

    Davenport, R W; Lanuza, M; Kim, S; Jia, M; Snyder, E; Nelson, P G

    2000-08-30

    Neurons develop and make very stable, long-term synaptic connections with other nerve cells and with muscle. Synaptic stability at the neuromuscular junction changes over development in that a proliferation of synaptic input are made to individual myotubes and synapses from all but one neuron are lost during development. In an established co-culture paradigm in which spinal motoneurons synaptically contact myotubes, thrombin and associated protease inhibitors have been shown to affect the loss of functional synaptic contacts [6]. Evidence has not been provided which clearly demonstrate whether protease/protease inhibitors affect either the pre- or postsynaptic terminal, or both. In an effort to determine whether these reagents directly affect postsynaptic receptors on myotubes, myotubes were cultured in the absence of neurons and the spontaneous presence and stability of aggregates of acetylcholine receptors (AChR) in control and thrombin-containing media were evaluated. In dishes fixed after treatment and in dishes in which individual aggregates were observed live, thrombin action appeared to increase loss of AChR aggregates over time. Hirudin, a specific inhibitor of the thrombin protease, diminished this loss. Neither reagent affected the overall incorporation or degradation of AChR; therefore, it appears these protease/protease inhibitors affect the state of AChR aggregation. PMID:10960680

  5. Alpha-galactosidase stimulates acetylcholine receptor aggregation in skeletal muscle cells via PNA-binding carbohydrates.

    PubMed

    Parkhomovskiy, N; Martin, P T

    2000-04-21

    Aggregation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) in skeletal muscle is an essential step in the formation of the mammalian neuromuscular junction. While proteins that bind to myotube receptors such as agrin and laminin can stimulate AChR aggregation in cultured myotubes, removal of cell surface sialic acids stimulates aggregation in a ligand-independent manner. Here, we show that removal of cell surface alpha-galactosides also stimulates AChR aggregation in the absence of added laminin or agrin. AChR aggregation stimulated by alpha-galactosidase was blocked by peanut agglutinin (PNA), which binds to lactosamine-containing disaccharides, but not by the GalNAc-binding lectin Vicia villosa agglutinin (VVA-B4). AChR aggregation stimulated by alpha-galactosidase potentiated AChR clustering induced by either neural agrin or laminin-1 and could be inhibited by muscle agrin. These data suggest that capping of cell surface lactosamines or N-acetyllactosamines with alpha-galactose affects AChR aggregation much as capping with sialic acids does.

  6. Recycling of Acetylcholine Receptors at Ectopic Postsynaptic Clusters Induced by Exogenous Agrin in Living Rats

    PubMed Central

    Brenner, Hans Rudolf; Akaaboune, Mohammed

    2014-01-01

    During the development of the neuromuscular junction, motor axons induce the clustering of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) and increase their metabolic stability in the muscle membrane. Here, we asked whether the synaptic organizer agrin might regulate the metabolic stability and density of AChRs by promoting the recycling of internalized AChRs, which would otherwise be destined for degradation, into synaptic sites. We show that at nerve-free AChR clusters induced by agrin in extrasynaptic membrane, internalized AChRs are driven back into the ectopic synaptic clusters where they intermingle with pre-existing and new receptors. The extent of AChR recycling depended on the strength of the agrin stimulus, but not on the development of junctional folds, another hallmark of mature postsynaptic membranes. In chronically denervated muscles, in which both AChR stability and recycling are significantly decreased by muscle inactivity, agrin maintained the amount of recycled AChRs at agrin-induced clusters at a level similar to that at denervated original endplates. In contrast, AChRs did not recycle at agrin-induced clusters in C2C12 or primary myotubes. Thus, in muscles in vivo, but not in cultured myotubes, neural agrin promotes the recycling of AChRs and thereby increases their metabolic stability. PMID:25093969

  7. The intrinsic energy of the gating isomerization of a neuromuscular acetylcholine receptor channel.

    PubMed

    Nayak, Tapan K; Purohit, Prasad G; Auerbach, Anthony

    2012-05-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) channels at neuromuscular synapses rarely open in the absence of agonists, but many different mutations increase the unliganded gating equilibrium constant (E0) to generate AChRs that are active constitutively. We measured E0 for two different sets of mutant combinations and by extrapolation estimated E0 for wild-type AChRs. The estimates were 7.6 and 7.8×10(-7) in adult-type mouse AChRs (-100 mV at 23°C). The values are in excellent agreement with one obtained previously by using a completely different method (6.5×10(-7), from monoliganded gating). E0 decreases with depolarization to the same extent as does the diliganded gating equilibrium constant, e-fold with ∼60 mV. We estimate that at -100 mV the intrinsic energy of the unliganded gating isomerization is +8.4 kcal/mol (35 kJ/mol), and that in the absence of a membrane potential, the intrinsic chemical energy of this global conformational change is +9.4 kcal/mol (39 kJ/mol). Na+ and K+ in the extracellular solution have no measureable effect on E0, which suggests that unliganded gating occurs with only water occupying the transmitter binding sites. The results are discussed with regard to the energy changes in receptor activation and the competitive antagonism of ions in agonist binding.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  9. Activation of α2A-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors mediates nicotine-induced motor output in embryonic zebrafish.

    PubMed

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

    2014-07-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Ngolab, Jennifer; Liu, Liwang; Zhao-Shea, Rubing; Gao, Guangping; Gardner, Paul D; Tapper, Andrew R

    2015-06-01

    Chronic nicotine exposure increases sensitivity to nicotine reward during a withdrawal period, which may facilitate relapse in abstinent smokers, yet the molecular neuroadaptation(s) that contribute to this phenomenon are unknown. Interestingly, chronic nicotine use induces functional upregulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the mesocorticolimbic reward pathway potentially linking upregulation to increased drug sensitivity. In the ventral tegmental area (VTA), functional upregulation of nAChRs containing the α4 subunit (α4* nAChRs) is restricted to GABAergic neurons. To test the hypothesis that increased functional expression of α4* nAChRs in these neurons modulates nicotine reward behaviors, we engineered a Cre recombinase-dependent gene expression system to selectively express α4 nAChR subunits harboring a "gain-of-function" mutation [a leucine mutated to a serine residue at the 9' position (Leu9'Ser)] in VTA GABAergic neurons of adult mice. In mice expressing Leu9'Ser α4 nAChR subunits in VTA GABAergic neurons (Gad2(VTA):Leu9'Ser mice), subreward threshold doses of nicotine were sufficient to selectively activate VTA GABAergic neurons and elicit acute hypolocomotion, with subsequent nicotine exposures eliciting tolerance to this effect, compared to control animals. In the conditioned place preference procedure, nicotine was sufficient to condition a significant place preference in Gad2(VTA):Leu9'Ser mice at low nicotine doses that failed to condition control animals. Together, these data indicate that functional upregulation of α4* nAChRs in VTA GABAergic neurons confers increased sensitivity to nicotine reward and points to nAChR subtypes specifically expressed in GABAergic VTA neurons as molecular targets for smoking cessation therapeutics.

  11. Modulation of AMPA receptor mediated current by nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in layer I neurons of rat prefrontal cortex

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Bo; Luo, Dong; Yang, Jie; Xu, Xiao-Yan; Zhu, Bing-Lin; Wang, Xue-Feng; Yan, Zhen; Chen, Guo-Jun

    2015-01-01

    Layer I neurons in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) exhibit extensive synaptic connections with deep layer neurons, implying their important role in the neural circuit. Study demonstrates that activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) increases excitatory neurotransmission in this layer. Here we found that nicotine selectively increased the amplitude of AMPA receptor (AMPAR)-mediated current and AMPA/NMDA ratio, while without effect on NMDA receptor-mediated current. The augmentation of AMPAR current by nicotine was inhibited by a selective α7-nAChR antagonist methyllycaconitine (MLA) and intracellular calcium chelator BAPTA. In addition, nicotinic effect on mEPSC or paired-pulse ratio was also prevented by MLA. Moreover, an enhanced inward rectification of AMPAR current by nicotine suggested a functional role of calcium permeable and GluA1 containing AMPAR. Consistently, nicotine enhancement of AMPAR current was inhibited by a selective calcium-permeable AMPAR inhibitor IEM-1460. Finally, the intracellular inclusion of synthetic peptide designed to block GluA1 subunit of AMPAR at CAMKII, PKC or PKA phosphorylation site, as well as corresponding kinase inhibitor, blocked nicotinic augmentation of AMPA/NMDA ratio. These results have revealed that nicotine increases AMPAR current by modulating the phosphorylation state of GluA1 which is dependent on α7-nAChR and intracellular calcium. PMID:26370265

  12. Heterologously expressed serotonin 1A receptors couple to muscarinic K+ channels in heart.

    PubMed Central

    Karschin, A; Ho, B Y; Labarca, C; Elroy-Stein, O; Moss, B; Davidson, N; Lester, H A

    1991-01-01

    In cardiac atrial cells, muscarinic acetylcholine receptors activate a K+ current directly via a guanine nucleotide-binding protein (G protein). Serotonin type 1A receptors may activate a similar pathway in hippocampal neurons. To develop a system in which receptor/G protein/K+ channel coupling can be experimentally manipulated, we have used a highly efficient recombinant vaccinia virus vector system to express human serotonin 1A receptors in primary cultures of rat atrial myocytes. The expressed 1A receptors activated the inwardly rectifying K+ conductance that is normally activated by the endogenous muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Maximal responses to either agonist occluded further activation by the other agonist. The average activation time constants for serotonin were about 5 times slower than for acetylcholine. The data support suggestions that the intracellular signaling pathway from seven-helix receptors to G proteins and directly to ion channels is widespread in excitable cells. After a fraction of the G proteins are activated irreversibly by guanosine 5'-[gamma-thio]triphosphate, subsequent transduction proceeds more efficiently. One possible interpretation is that multiple G-protein molecules are required to activate each channel. Vaccinia virus expression vectors are thus useful for expressing seven-helix receptors in primary cultures of postmitotic cells and have provided a heterologous expression system for the signaling pathway from seven-helix receptors to G proteins and directly to ion channels. Images PMID:1905814

  13. Acetylcholine receptor in planar lipid bilayers. Characterization of the channel properties of the purified nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo californica reconstituted in planar lipid bilayers.

    PubMed

    Labarca, P; Lindstrom, J; Montal, M

    1984-04-01

    The properties of the channel of the purified acetylcholine receptor (AChR) were investigated after reconstitution in planar lipid bilayers. The time course of the agonist-induced conductance exhibits a transient peak that relaxes to a steady state value. The macroscopic steady state membrane conductance increases with agonist concentration, reaching saturation at 10(-5) M for carbamylcholine (CCh). The agonist-induced membrane conductance was inhibited by d-tubocurarine (50% inhibition, IC50, at approximately 10(-6) M) and hexamethonium (IC50 approximately 10(-5) M). The single channel conductance, gamma, is ohmic and independent of the agonist. At 0.3 M monovalent salt concentrations, gamma = 28 pS for Na+, 30 pS for Rb+, 38 pS for Cs+, and 50 pS for NH+4. The distribution of channel open times was fit by a sum of two exponentials, reflecting the existence of two distinct open states. tau o1 and tau o2, the fast and slow components of the distribution of open times, are independent of the agonist concentration: for CCh this was verified in the range of 10(-6) M less than C less than 10(-3)M. tau 01 and tau o2 are approximately three times longer for suberyldicholine ( SubCh ) than for CCh. tau o1 and tau o2 are moderately voltage dependent, increasing as the applied voltage in the compartment containing agonist is made more positive with respect to the other. At desensitizing concentrations of agonist, the AChR channel openings occurred in a characteristic pattern of sudden paroxysms of channel activity followed by quiescent periods. A local anesthetic derivative of lidocaine ( QX -222) reduced both tau o1 and tau o2. This effect was dependent on both the concentration of QX -222 and the applied voltage. Thus, the AChR purified from Torpedo electric organ and reconstituted in planar lipid bilayers exhibits ion conduction and kinetic and pharmacological properties similar to AChR in intact muscle postsynaptic membranes.

  14. Evaluating the role of the alpha-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in the pathophysiology and treatment of schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Young, Jared W; Geyer, Mark A

    2013-10-15

    The group of schizophrenia disorders affects approximately 1% of the population and has both genetic and environmental etiologies. Sufferers report various behavioral abnormalities including hallucinations and delusions (positive symptoms), reduced joy and amotivation (negative symptoms), plus inattention and poor learning (cognitive deficits). Despite the heterogeneous symptoms experienced, most patients smoke. The self-medication hypothesis posits that patients smoke to alleviate symptoms, consistent with evidence for nicotine-induced enhancement of cognition. While nicotine acts on multiple nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), the primary target of research is often the homomeric α7 nAChR. Given genetic linkages between schizophrenia and this receptor, its association with P50 sensory gating deficits, and its reduced expression in post-mortem brains, many have attempted to develop α7 nAChR ligands for treating schizophrenia. Recent evidence that ligands can be orthosteric agonists or positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) has revitalized the hope for treatment discovery. Herein, we present evidence regarding: (1) pathophysiological alterations of α7 nAChRs that might occur in patients; (2) mechanistic evidence for the normal action of α7 nAChRs; (3) preclinical studies using α7 nAChR orthosteric agonists and type I/II PAMs; and (4) where successful translational testing has occurred for particular compounds, detailing what is still required. We report that the accumulating evidence is positive, but that greater work is required using positron emission tomography to understand current alterations in α7 nAChR expression and their relationship to symptoms. Finally, cross-species behavioral tasks should be used more regularly to determine the predictive efficacy of treatments.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-12-01

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

  16. Structural characteristics of the recognition site for cholinergic ligands in the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from squid optical ganglia

    SciTech Connect

    Plyashkevich, Yu.G.; Demushkin, V.P.

    1986-01-20

    The influence of chemical modification on the parameters of the binding of cholinergic ligands by the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor of squid optical ganglia was investigated. The presence of two subpopulations of recognition sites, differing in the composition of the groups contained in them, was detected. It was established with high probability that subpopulation I contains arginine and tyrosine residues and a carboxyl group while subpopulation II contains an amino group, a thyrosine residue, and a carboxyl group. Moreover, in both subpopulations there is an amino group important only for the binding of tubocurarin. On the basis of the results obtained, a model of the recognition sites for cholinergic ligands of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor of squid optical ganglia is proposed.

  17. 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

  18. Arecoline inhibits and destabilizes agrin-induced acetylcholine receptor cluster formation in C2C12 myotubes.

    PubMed

    Chang, Yung-Fu; Liu, Ting-Yuan; Liu, Shao-Tung

    2013-10-01

    Areca nut (Areca catechu) is chewed as a medical and psychoactive food by roughly 10% of the world population. Areca nut chewing may lead to low birth weight, premature delivery and impaired muscle development. Our previous study showed that arecoline, a major alkaloid in the areca nut, inhibited the myogenic differentiation of C2C12 myoblastic cells. The clustering of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) in the postsynaptic membrane at the neuromuscular junction (NMJ) by agrin, a signaling protein released by motor neurons, is critical for the development of functional muscles. Here, we further investigate whether arecoline affects the AChR clustering using cultured C2C12 myotubes. Rhodamine-conjugated α-bungarotoxin was used to detect the presence of AChR clusters. Our results showed that arecoline inhibited the formation of agrin-induced AChR clusters and destabilized agrin-induced or spontaneous AChR cluster formation. In addition, arecoline inhibited the expression of myogenin in C2C12 myotubes. These results shed light on the important role of arecoline on the detrimental effect of areca nut to muscle development. PMID:23933062

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Delayed procedural learning in α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor knockout mice

    PubMed Central

    Young, J. W.; Meves, J. M.; Tarantino, I. S.; Caldwell, S.; Geyer, M. A.

    2014-01-01

    The α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) has long been a procognitive therapeutic target to treat schizophrenia. Evidence on the role of this receptor in cognition has been lacking, however, in part due to the limited availability of suitable ligands. The behavior of α7-nAChR knockout (KO) mice has been examined previously, but cognitive assessments using tests with cross-species translatability have been limited to date. Here, we assessed the cognitive performance of α7-nAChR KO and wild-type (WT) littermate mice in the attentional set-shifting task of executive functioning, the radial arm maze test of spatial working memory span capacity and the novel object recognition test of short-term memory. The reward motivation of these mutants was assessed using the progressive ratio breakpoint test. In addition, we assessed the exploratory behavior and sensorimotor gating using the behavioral pattern monitor and prepulse inhibition, respectively. α7-nAChR KO mice exhibited normal set-shifting, but impaired procedural learning (rule acquisition) in multiple paradigms. Spatial span capacity, short-term memory, motivation for food, exploration and sensorimotor gating were all comparable to WT littermates. The data presented here support the notion that this receptor is important for such procedural learning, when patterns in the environment become clear and a rule is learned. In combination with the impaired attention observed previously in these mice, this finding suggests that agonist treatments should be examined in clinical studies of attention and procedural learning, perhaps in combination with cognitive behavioral therapy. PMID:21679297

  2. Brain β2*-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor occupancy after use of a nicotine inhaler

    PubMed Central

    Esterlis, Irina; Mitsis, Effie M.; Batis, Jeffery C.; Bois, Frederic; Picciotto, Marina R.; Stiklus, Stephanie M.; Kloczynski, Tracy; Perry, Edward; Seibyl, John P.; McKee, Sherry; Staley, Julie K.; Cosgrove, Kelly P.

    2012-01-01

    The Nicotrol® (Pfizer, USA) nicotine inhaler reduces craving by mimicking the behavioural component of cigarettes and delivering controlled doses of nicotine, which binds to the beta-2 subunit-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (β2*-nAChRs). Previous studies examined β2*-nAChR occupancy after administration of regular and low-nicotine cigarettes. Here, we measured occupancy of β2*-nAChRs after administration of nicotine via inhaler, and the relationship between occupancy and changes in craving for tobacco smoking and withdrawal symptoms. Tobacco smokers participated in [123I]5-IA-85380 SPECT studies with either a nicotine inhaler (n=9) or tobacco cigarette (n=4) challenge. [123I]5-IA was administered as a bolus plus constant infusion. After equilibrium was achieved, three 30-min baseline scans were collected, and subjects either used the nicotine inhaler or a regular cigarette, and up to six additional scans were obtained. Receptor occupancy was determined based on the Lassen plot method. Craving for tobacco smoking and withdrawal symptoms were evaluated pre- and post-challenge. Use of the nicotine inhaler produced an average 55.9±6.4% occupancy of β2*-nAChRs 2–5 h post-challenge, whereas use of a cigarette produced significantly higher receptor occupancy (F=10.6, p=0.009) with an average 67.6±14.1% occupancy 1.5–5 h post-challenge. There was a significant decrease in withdrawal symptoms post-nicotine inhaler use (F=6.13, p=0.04). These results demonstrate significant differences in occupancy of β2*-nAChRs by nicotine after use of the inhaler vs. a cigarette and confirm the ability of the nicotine inhaler to relieve withdrawal symptoms. PMID:21029513

  3. Molecular Mechanisms of Bitopic Ligand Engagement with the M1 Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor*

    PubMed Central

    Keov, Peter; López, Laura; Devine, Shane M.; Valant, Celine; Lane, J. Robert; Scammells, Peter J.; Sexton, Patrick M.; Christopoulos, Arthur

    2014-01-01

    TBPB and 77-LH-28-1 are selective agonists of the M1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) that may gain their selectivity through a bitopic mechanism, interacting concomitantly with the orthosteric site and part of an allosteric site. The current study combined site-directed mutagenesis, analytical pharmacology,and molecular modeling to gain further insights into the structural basis underlying binding and signaling by these agonists. Mutations within the orthosteric binding site caused similar reductions in affinity and signaling efficacy for both selective and prototypical orthosteric ligands. In contrast, the mutation of residues within transmembrane helix (TM) 2 and the second extracellular loop (ECL2) discriminated between the different classes of ligand. In particular, ECL2 appears to be involved in the selective binding of bitopic ligands and in coordinating biased agonism between intracellular calcium mobilization and ERK1/2 phosphorylation. Molecular modeling of the interaction between TBPB and the M1 mAChR revealed a binding pose predicted to extend from the orthosteric site up toward a putative allosteric site bordered by TM2, TM3, and TM7, thus consistent with a bitopic mode of binding. Overall, these findings provide valuable structural and mechanistic insights into bitopic ligand actions and receptor activation and support a role for ECL2 in dictating the active states that can be adopted by a G protein-coupled receptor. This may enable greater selective ligand design and development for mAChRs and facilitate improved identification of bitopic ligands. PMID:25006252

  4. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor gene family of the honey bee, Apis mellifera.

    PubMed

    Jones, Andrew K; Raymond-Delpech, Valerie; Thany, Steeve H; Gauthier, Monique; Sattelle, David B

    2006-11-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) mediate fast cholinergic synaptic transmission and play roles in many cognitive processes. They are under intense research as potential targets of drugs used to treat neurodegenerative diseases and neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. Invertebrate nAChRs are targets of anthelmintics as well as a major group of insecticides, the neonicotinoids. The honey bee, Apis mellifera, is one of the most beneficial insects worldwide, playing an important role in crop pollination, and is also a valuable model system for studies on social interaction, sensory processing, learning, and memory. We have used the A. mellifera genome information to characterize the complete honey bee nAChR gene family. Comparison with the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and the malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae shows that the honey bee possesses the largest family of insect nAChR subunits to date (11 members). As with Drosophila and Anopheles, alternative splicing of conserved exons increases receptor diversity. Also, we show that in one honey bee nAChR subunit, six adenosine residues are targeted for RNA A-to-I editing, two of which are evolutionarily conserved in Drosophila melanogaster and Heliothis virescens orthologs, and that the extent of editing increases as the honey bee lifecycle progresses, serving to maximize receptor diversity at the adult stage. These findings on Apis mellifera enhance our understanding of nAChR functional genomics and provide a useful basis for the development of improved insecticides that spare a major beneficial insect species.

  5. Modal affinities of endplate acetylcholine receptors caused by loop C mutations

    PubMed Central

    Vij, Ridhima; Purohit, Prasad

    2015-01-01

    The time course of the endplate current is determined by the rate and equilibrium constants for acetylcholine receptor (AChR) activation. We measured these constants in single-channel currents from AChRs with mutations at the neurotransmitter-binding sites, in loop C. The main findings are: (a) Almost all perturbations of loop C generate heterogeneity in the channel open probability (“modes”). (b) Modes are generated by different affinities for ACh that can be either higher or lower than in the wild-type receptors. (c) The modes are stable, in so far as each receptor maintains its affinity for at least several minutes. (d) Different agonists show different degrees of modal activity. With the loop C mutation αP197A, there are four modes with ACh but only two with partial agonists. (e) The affinity variations arise exclusively from the αδ-binding site. (f) Substituting four γ-subunit residues into the δ subunit (three in loop E and one in the β5–β5′ linker) reduces modal activity. (g) At each neurotransmitter-binding site, affinity is determined by a core of five aromatic residues. Modes are eliminated by an alanine mutation at δW57 but not at the other aromatics. (h) Modes are eliminated by a phenylalanine substitution at all core aromatics except αY93. The results suggest that, at the αδ agonist site, loop C and the complementary subunit surface can each adopt alternative conformations and interact with each other to influence the position of δW57 with respect to the aromatic core and, hence, affinity. PMID:26503719

  6. Multiple Pharmacophores for the Selective Activation of Nicotinic α7-Type Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Horenstein, Nicole A.; Leonik, Fedra M.; Papke, Roger L.

    2010-01-01

    The activation of heteromeric and homomeric nicotinic acetylcholine receptors was studied in Xenopus laevis oocytes to identify key structures of putative agonist molecules associated with the selective activation of homomeric α7 receptors. We observed that selectivity between α7 and α4β2 was more readily obtained than selectivity between α7 and α3β4. Based on structural comparisons of previously characterized selective and nonselective agonists, we hypothesize at least three chemical motifs exist that, when present in molecules containing an appropriate cationic center, could be associated with the selective activation of α7 receptors. We identify the three distinct structural motifs based on prototypical drugs as the choline motif, the tropane motif, and the benzylidene motif. The choline motif involves the location of an oxygen-containing polar group such as a hydroxyl or carbonyl separated by two carbons from the charged nitrogen. The tropane motif provides α7-selectivity based on the addition of multiple small hydrophobic groups positioned away from the cationic center in specific orientations. We show that this motif can convert the nonselective agonists quinuclidine and ethyltrimethyl-ammonium to the α7-selective analogs methyl-quinuclidine and diethyldimethyl-ammonium, respectively. We have shown previously that the benzylidene group of 3–2,4, dimethoxy-benzylidene anabaseine (GTS-21) converts anabaseine into an α7-selective agonist. The benzylidene motif was also applied to quinuclidine to generate another distinct family of α7-selective agonists. Our results provide insight for the further development of nicotinic therapeutics and will be useful to direct future experiments with protein structure-based modeling and site-directed mutagenesis. PMID:18768388

  7. In silico point mutation and evolutionary trace analysis applied to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in deciphering ligand-binding surfaces.

    PubMed

    Parthiban, Marimuthu; Shanmughavel, Piramanayagam; Sowdhamini, Ramanathan

    2010-10-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are members of the Cys-loop superfamily and contain ligand gated ion channels (LGIC). These receptors are located mostly in the central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral nervous system (PNS). nAChRs reside at pre-synaptic regions to mediate acetylcholine neurotransmission and in the post synaptic membrane to propagate nerve impulses through neurons via acetylcholine. Malfunction of this neurotransmitter receptor is believed to cause various neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and schizophrenia, and nAChRs are thus important drug targets. In the present work, starting from an earlier model of pentameric alpha7nAChR, a considerable effort has been taken to investigate interaction with ligands by performing docking studies with a diverse array of agonists and antagonists. Analysis of these docking complexes reveals identification of possible ligand-interacting residues. Some of these residues, e.g. Ser34, Gln55, Ser146, and Tyr166, which are evolutionarily conserved, were specifically subjected to virtual mutations based on their amino acid properties and found to be highly sensitive in the presence of antagonists by docking. Further, the study was extended using evolutionary trace analysis, revealing conserved and class-specific residues close to the putative ligand-binding site, further supporting the results of docking experiments.

  8. 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

  9. Inhibitory effect of alpha-fetoprotein on the binding of myasthenia gravis antibody to acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Brenner, T; Beyth, Y; Abramsky, O

    1980-01-01

    The binding of myasthenia gravis antibody acetylcholine receptor (AcChoR) as measured in vitro by Radioimmunoassay with 125I-labeled alpha-bungarotoxin (alpha-BuTx), can be blocked by amniotic fluid, maternal serum, and umbilical cord serum. This inhibitory effect is due to alpha-fetoprotein present in high concentrations in amniotic fluid and serum, as shown by: (i) selective removal of several components from amniotic fluid and serum; (ii) selective addition of different components present in amniotic fluid and serum, including alpha-fetoprotein, to be radioimmunoassay; (iii) correlation between the inhibitory effect of both amniotic fluid and serum and between the amounts of alpha-fetoprotein they contain; (iv) blocking of the alpha-fetoprotein in vitro suggests a similar effect in vivo in pregnant women with myasthenia gravis. This effect may explain in part the variability in the development of neonatal myasthenia gravis in the babies, due to transplacental transfer of maternal anti-AcChoR antibody, only after delivery and only in the minority of the cases. It also may explain the appearnace of remissions in females with myasthenia gravis during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy. Similar phenomena observed during pregnancy in other autoimmune and immunopathogenic diseases also might be attributed to activity of alpha-fetoprotein. PMID:6158053

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  11. A D-peptide ligand of nicotine acetylcholine receptors for brain-targeted drug delivery.

    PubMed

    Wei, Xiaoli; Zhan, Changyou; Shen, Qing; Fu, Wei; Xie, Cao; Gao, Jie; Peng, Chunmei; Zheng, Ping; Lu, Weiyue

    2015-03-01

    Lysosomes of brain capillary endothelial cells are implicated in nicotine acetylcholine receptor (nAChR)-mediated transcytosis and act as an enzymatic barrier for the transport of peptide ligands to the brain. A D-peptide ligand of nAChRs (termed (D)CDX), which binds to nAChRs with an IC50 value of 84.5 nM, was developed by retro-inverso isomerization. (D)CDX displayed exceptional stability in lysosomal homogenate and serum, and demonstrated significantly higher transcytosis efficiency in an in vitro blood-brain barrier monolayer compared with the parent L-peptide. When modified on liposomal surface, (D)CDX facilitated significant brain-targeted delivery of liposomes. As a result, brain-targeted delivery of (D)CDX modified liposomes enhanced therapeutic efficiency of encapsulated doxorubicin for glioblastoma. This study illustrates the importance of ligand stability in nAChRs-mediated transcytosis, and paves the way for developing stable brain-targeted entities.

  12. Effects of chlorpromazine and phencyclidine on mouse C2 acetylcholine receptor kinetics.

    PubMed Central

    Changeux, J P; Pinset, C; Ribera, A B

    1986-01-01

    Patch-clamp techniques were used to record acetylcholine- (ACh) activated single-channel currents in cell-attached membrane patches from myotubes of the mouse cell line, C2. The effects of the phenothiazine derivative chlorpromazine (CPZ) and of the hallucinogen phencyclidine (PCP) on ACh-activated single-channel properties were studied under conditions where both compounds are positively charged (pH 7.2). The single-channel conductance was unaffected by either CPZ or PCP at concentrations ranging from 10 to 500 nM. 10-200 nM-CPZ and PCP led to shortened mean burst times. CPZ and PCP effects on mean burst times were voltage independent and did not vary in a simple linear manner with concentration. 10-200 nM-CPZ and PCP did not reduce channel opening frequencies, suggesting that the fraction of non-conducting state (occupied, blocked or desensitized) favoured at equilibrium was not significant at these concentrations. On the other hand, concentrations of CPZ and PCP higher than 300 nM did lead to depressed channel opening frequencies. In addition, we observed that, at these concentrations, the shortened burst duration reverses to the longer values found at lower effector concentrations. The effects of CPZ and PCP on ACh-activated single-channel kinetics are interpreted in terms of current models of ACh-receptor structure and conformational transitions. PMID:2432254

  13. 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

  14. Alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor is a target in pharmacology and toxicology.

    PubMed

    Pohanka, Miroslav

    2012-01-01

    Alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7 nAChR) is an important part of the cholinergic nerve system in the brain. Moreover, it is associated with a cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway in the termination of the parasympathetic nervous system. Antagonists of α7 nAChR are a wide group represented by conotoxin and bungarotoxin. Even Alzheimer's disease drug memantine acting as an antagonist in its side pathway belongs in this group. Agonists of α7 nAChR are suitable for treatment of multiple cognitive dysfunctions such as Alzheimer's disease or schizophrenia. Inflammation or even sepsis can be ameliorated by the agonistic acting compounds. Preparations RG3487, SEN34625/WYE-103914, SEN12333, ABT-107, Clozapine, GTS-21, CNI-1493, and AR-R17779 are representative examples of the novel compounds with affinity toward the α7 nAChR. Pharmacological, toxicological, and medicinal significance of α7 nAChR are discussed throughout this paper.

  15. Congenital myasthenic syndromes: I. Deficiency and short open-time of the acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Engel, A G; Nagel, A; Walls, T J; Harper, C M; Waisburg, H A

    1993-12-01

    A 5.5-year-old girl had myasthenic symptoms since birth. Tests for antiacetylcholine receptor (AChR) antibodies were negative. To investigate the character of the neuromuscular transmission defect, an intercostal muscle specimen was obtained at age 27 months. Immune deposits were absent from the endplates. On electron microscopy, most postsynaptic regions appeared normal, but the density of AChR on the junctional folds was diffusely reduced. In vitro microelectrode studies revealed that the number of transmitter quanta released by nerve impulse was normal. The amplitude of miniature of endplate potentials and currents was abnormally low. A study of the kinetic properties of AChR by analysis of acetylcholine-induced current noise demonstrated a significant decrease in mean channel open-time; the mean channel conductance was normal. The safety margin of neuromuscular transmission in this disorder is likely to be compromised by the deficiency and abnormal kinetic properties of AChR. The findings are unique among those patients with congenital AChR deficiency described to date. PMID:8232383

  16. [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.

  17. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  19. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-lipid interactions: Mechanistic insight and biological function.

    PubMed

    Baenziger, John E; Hénault, Camille M; Therien, J P Daniel; Sun, Jiayin

    2015-09-01

    Membrane lipids are potent modulators of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) from Torpedo. Lipids influence nAChR function by both conformational selection and kinetic mechanisms, stabilizing varying proportions of activatable versus non-activatable conformations, as well as influencing the transitions between these conformational states. Of note, some membranes stabilize an electrically silent uncoupled conformation that binds agonist but does not undergo agonist-induced conformational transitions. The uncoupled nAChR, however, does transition to activatable conformations in relatively thick lipid bilayers, such as those found in lipid rafts. In this review, we discuss current understanding of lipid-nAChR interactions in the context of increasingly available high resolution structural and functional data. These data highlight different sites of lipid action, including the lipid-exposed M4 transmembrane α-helix. Current evidence suggests that lipids alter nAChR function by modulating interactions between M4 and the adjacent transmembrane α-helices, M1 and M3. These interactions have also been implicated in both the folding and trafficking of nAChRs to the cell surface. We review current mechanistic understanding of lipid-nAChR interactions, and highlight potential biological roles for lipid-nAChR interactions in modulating the synaptic response. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Lipid-protein interactions. PMID:25791350

  20. Drug binding to the acetylcholine receptor: Nitroxide analogs of phencyclidine and a local anesthetic

    SciTech Connect

    Palma, A.L.

    1988-01-01

    The interaction of noncompetitive inhibitors (NCIs) with Torpedo californica native nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) membranes was examined primarily by the technique of electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy. The goal of this work being to define some of the physical characteristics for the site(s) of association between an NCI and the nAChR membrane. A nitroxide labeled analog of a quaternary amine local anesthetic, 2-(N,N-dimethyl-N-4-(2,2,6,6-tetramethylpiperidinoxyl)amino)-ethyl 4-hexyloxybenzoate iodide (C6SLMeI), displays a strongly immobilized EPR component when added to nAChR membranes in the presence of carbamylcholine (carb). To further this work, a nitroxide labeled analog of phencyclidine (PCP), a potent NCI, was synthesized. 4-phenyl-4-(1-piperidinyl)-2,2,6,6-tetramethylpiperidinoxyl (PPT) exhibited one-third the potency of PCP in inhibiting nAChR mediated ion flux, and from competition binding studies with ({sup 3}H)PCP displayed a K{sub D} of 0.21 {mu}M towards a carb desensitized nAChR and a K{sub 0.5} of 18 {mu}M for a resting {alpha}-bungarotoxin treated nAChR.

  1. Spectroscopic investigation of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor for application in medical diagnosis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salzer, Reiner; Fischer, Wolfgang B.; Unverricht, Ines; Schwenke, Dirk; Steiner, Gerald; Schrattenholz, Andre; Maelicke, Alfred

    1998-04-01

    Native vesicles containing the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) prepared from the electric organ of the ray Torpedo marmorata were used to obtain fluorescence signal sin dependence of different concentrations of the local anesthetics procaine. Nonlinear concentration dependent spectral changes are found using ethidium bromide as a fluorescence marker. Structural changes are found for the proteins including the nAChR in the vesicles during immobilization onto surfaces such as IR transparent germanium (GE) crystal, Ge crystal coated with silver (Ag) cluster to use the SEIRA effect and/or crystals covered with a lipid subphase. A comparison between Ge and Ge coated with Ag (Ge/Ag) clusters reveals increased structural changes in the spectral regions around 1670 cm-1 upon adsorption of the vesicles on the latter surface. Is the Ge/Ag crystal precoated with a lipid subphase an almost similar spectral contour for the amide I band envelope as in the spectra recorded on a neat Ge crystal is found.

  2. 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.

  3. Sulfhydryl-group modifications of Torpedo Californica acetylcholine receptor: subunit localization and effects on function

    SciTech Connect

    McNamee, M.G.; Yee, A.S.

    1986-05-01

    The effects of thiol-group modification on acetylcholine receptor (ACHR) function were measured using purified Torpedo ACHR reconstituted into soybean lipid vesicles. N-Phenyl-maleimide (NPM) was used to modify sulfhydryl groups in ACHR in the absence of any prior reduction by dithiotheitol. Modification by NPM led to the inhibition of ion channel activity without a detectable effect on ligand binding. The ion flux inhibition by NPM primarily affected channel activation, since the initial rates of activation decreased over a wide range of carbamylcholine concentrations. The /sup 3/H-NPM subunit labelling pattern of ACHR (a multisubunit membrane protein with ..cap alpha../sub 2/..beta gamma..delta stoichiometry) revealed preferential labelling of the ..gamma.. subunit. At high NPM concentration, the number of sulfhydryl groups on the ..gamma.. subunit that could be modified with NPM was two. Detergent was required during labelling for functionally relevant thiol group modifications, and most of the label was protected from protease digestion in the reconstituted membranes. These results are consistent with the presence of the NPM modification in a bilayer and/or cytoplasmic domain. Analysis of cyanogen bromide and trypsin fragments indicates that the labeled cysteines may be located in the postulated amphipathic helix region of the ..gamma.. subunit.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-14

    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. PMID:26355753

  5. A positive relationship between harm avoidance and brain nicotinic acetylcholine receptor availability.

    PubMed

    Storage, Steven; Mandelkern, Mark A; Phuong, Jonathan; Kozman, Maggie; Neary, Meaghan K; Brody, Arthur L

    2013-12-30

    Prior research indicates that disturbance of cholinergic neurotransmission reduces anxiety, leading to the hypothesis that people with heightened cholinergic function have a greater tendency toward anxiety-like and/or harm-avoidant behavior. We sought to determine if people with elevated levels of harm avoidance (HA), a dimension of temperament from the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI), have high α4β2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) availability. Healthy adults (n=105; 47 non-smokers and 58 smokers) underwent bolus-plus-continuous infusion positron emission tomography (PET) scanning using the radiotracer 2-[18F]fluoro-3-(2(S)azetidinylmethoxy) pyridine (abbreviated as 2-FA). During the uptake period of 2-FA, participants completed the TCI. The central study analysis revealed a significant association between total HA and mean nAChR availability, with higher total HA scores being linked with greater nAChR availability. In examining HA subscales, both 'Fear of Uncertainty' and 'Fatigability' were significant, based on higher levels of these characteristics being associated with greater nAChR availabilities. This study adds to a growing body of knowledge concerning the biological basis of personality and may prove useful in understanding the pathophysiology of psychiatric disorders (such as anxiety disorders) that have similar characteristics to HA. Study findings may indicate that heightened cholinergic neurotransmission is associated with increased anxiety-like traits.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. The Ubiquitin–Proteasome System Regulates the Stability of Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Rezvani, Khosrow; Teng, Yanfen

    2010-01-01

    Ubiquitination is a key event for protein degradation by the proteasome system, membrane protein internalization, and protein trafficking among cellular compartments. Few data are available on the role of the ubiquitin–proteasome system (UPS) in the trafficking of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Experiments conducted in neuron-like differentiated rat pheochromocytoma cells (PC12 cells) show that the α3, β2, and β4 nAChR subunits are ubiquitinated and that their ubiquitination is necessary for degradation. A 24-h treatment with the proteasome inhibitor PS-341 increased the total levels of α3 and the two β subunits in both whole cell lysates and fractions enriched for the ER/Golgi compartment. nAChR subunit upregulation was also detected in plasma membrane-enriched fractions. Inhibition of the lysosomal degradation machinery by E-64 had a significantly smaller effect on nAChR turnover. The present data, together with previous results showing that the α7 nAChR subunit is a target of the UPS, point to a prominent role of the proteasome in nAChR trafficking. PMID:19693707

  11. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor gene family of the malaria mosquito, Anopheles gambiae.

    PubMed

    Jones, Andrew K; Grauso, Marta; Sattelle, David B

    2005-02-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) mediate fast cholinergic synaptic transmission in the insect nervous system and are targets of widely selling insecticides. We have identified the nAChR gene family from the genome of the malaria mosquito vector, Anopheles gambiae, to be the second complete insect nAChR gene family described following that of Drosophila melanogaster. Like Drosophila, Anopheles possesses 10 nAChR subunits with orthologous relationships evident between the two insects. Interestingly, the Anopheles orthologues of Dbeta2 and Dbeta3 possess the vicinal cysteines that define alpha subunits. As with Dalpha4 and Dalpha6, the Anopheles orthologues are alternatively spliced at equivalent exons. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis shows that RNA A-to-I editing sites conserved between Dalpha6 of Drosophila and alpha7-2 of the tobacco budworm, Heliothis virescens, are not shared with the equivalent nAChR subunit of Anopheles. Indeed, RNA-editing sites identified in functionally significant regions of Dbeta1, Dalpha5, and Dalpha6 are not conserved in the mosquito orthologues, indicating considerable divergence of RNA molecules targeted for editing within the insect order Diptera. These findings shed further light on the diversity of nAChR subunits and may present a useful basis for the development of improved malaria control agents by enhancing our understanding of a validated mosquito insecticide target.

  12. 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

  13. The α6 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit of Frankliniella occidentalis is not involved in resistance to spinosad.

    PubMed

    Hou, Wenjie; Liu, Qiulei; Tian, Lixia; Wu, Qingjun; Zhang, Youjun; Xie, Wen; Wang, Shaoli; Miguel, Keri San; Funderburk, Joe; Scott, Jeffrey G

    2014-05-01

    Insects evolve resistance which constrains the sustainable use of insecticides. Spinosyns, a class of environmentally-friendly macrolide insecticides, is not an exception. The mode of inheritance and the mechanisms of resistance to spinosad (the most common spinosyn insecticide) in Frankliniella occidentalis (Western flower thrips, WFT) were investigated in this study. Resistance (170,000-fold) was autosomal and completely recessive. Recent studies showed that deletion of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α6 subunit gene resulted in strains of Drosophila melanogaster, Plutella xylostella and Bactrocera dorsalis that are resistant to spinosad, indicating that nAChRα6 subunit maybe important for the toxic action of this insecticide. Conversely, a G275E mutation of this subunit in F. occidentalis was recently proposed as the mechanism of resistance to spinosad. We cloned and characterized nAChRα6 from three susceptible and two spinosad resistant strains from China and the USA. The Foα6 cDNA is 1873bp and the open reading frame is 1458bp which encodes 485 amino acid residues with a predicted molecular weight of 53.5-kDa, the 5' and 3' UTRs are 121 and 294bp, respectively. There was no difference in the cDNA sequence between the resistant and susceptible thrips, suggesting the G275E mutation does not confer resistance in these populations. Ten isoforms of Foα6, arising from alternative splicing, were isolated and did not differ between the spinosad-susceptible and resistant strains. Quantitative real time PCR analysis showed Foα6 was highly expressed in the first instar larva, pupa and adult, and the expression levels were 3.67, 2.47, 1.38 times that of the second instar larva. The expression level was not significantly different between the susceptible and resistant strains. These results indicate that Foα6 is not involved in resistance to spinosad in F. occidentalis from China and the USA. PMID:24861935

  14. The α6 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit of Frankliniella occidentalis is not involved in resistance to spinosad.

    PubMed

    Hou, Wenjie; Liu, Qiulei; Tian, Lixia; Wu, Qingjun; Zhang, Youjun; Xie, Wen; Wang, Shaoli; Miguel, Keri San; Funderburk, Joe; Scott, Jeffrey G

    2014-05-01

    Insects evolve resistance which constrains the sustainable use of insecticides. Spinosyns, a class of environmentally-friendly macrolide insecticides, is not an exception. The mode of inheritance and the mechanisms of resistance to spinosad (the most common spinosyn insecticide) in Frankliniella occidentalis (Western flower thrips, WFT) were investigated in this study. Resistance (170,000-fold) was autosomal and completely recessive. Recent studies showed that deletion of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α6 subunit gene resulted in strains of Drosophila melanogaster, Plutella xylostella and Bactrocera dorsalis that are resistant to spinosad, indicating that nAChRα6 subunit maybe important for the toxic action of this insecticide. Conversely, a G275E mutation of this subunit in F. occidentalis was recently proposed as the mechanism of resistance to spinosad. We cloned and characterized nAChRα6 from three susceptible and two spinosad resistant strains from China and the USA. The Foα6 cDNA is 1873bp and the open reading frame is 1458bp which encodes 485 amino acid residues with a predicted molecular weight of 53.5-kDa, the 5' and 3' UTRs are 121 and 294bp, respectively. There was no difference in the cDNA sequence between the resistant and susceptible thrips, suggesting the G275E mutation does not confer resistance in these populations. Ten isoforms of Foα6, arising from alternative splicing, were isolated and did not differ between the spinosad-susceptible and resistant strains. Quantitative real time PCR analysis showed Foα6 was highly expressed in the first instar larva, pupa and adult, and the expression levels were 3.67, 2.47, 1.38 times that of the second instar larva. The expression level was not significantly different between the susceptible and resistant strains. These results indicate that Foα6 is not involved in resistance to spinosad in F. occidentalis from China and the USA.

  15. 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

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-01

    The vinegar fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has been used to identify and manipulate insecticide resistance genes. The advancement of genome engineering technology and the increasing availability of pest genome sequences has increased the predictive and diagnostic capacity of the Drosophila model. The Drosophila model can be extended to investigate the basic biology of the interaction between insecticides and the proteins they target. Recently we have developed an in vivo system that permits the expression and study of key insecticide targets, the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), in controlled genetic backgrounds. Here this system is used to study the interaction between the insecticide spinosad and a nAChR subunit, Dα6. Reciprocal chimeric subunits were created from Dα6 and Dα7, a subunit that does not respond to spinosad. Using the in vivo system, the Dα6/Dα7 chimeric subunits were tested for their capacity to respond to spinosad. Only the subunits containing the C-terminal region of Dα6 were able to respond to spinosad, thus confirming the importance this region for spinosad binding. A new incompletely dominant, spinosad resistance mechanism that may evolve in pest species is also examined. First generated using chemical mutagenesis, the Dα6(P146S) mutation was recreated using the Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 system, the first use of this technology to introduce a resistant mutation into a controlled genetic background. Both alleles present with the same incompletely dominant, spinosad resistance phenotype, proving the P146S replacement to be the causal mutation. The proximity of the P146S mutation to the conserved Cys-loop indicates that it may impair the gating of the receptor. The results of this study enhance the understanding of nAChR structure:function relationships. PMID:25747007

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-01

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

  19. alpha 7-type acetylcholine receptor localization and its modulation by nicotine and cholesterol in vascular endothelial cells.

    PubMed

    Peña, Victoria B Ayala; Bonini, Ida C; Antollini, Silvia S; Kobayashi, Toshihide; Barrantes, Francisco J

    2011-11-01

    The neuronal-type α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7AChR) is also found in various non-neural tissues, including vascular endothelium, where its peculiar ionotropic properties (high Ca(2+) permeability) and its supervening Ca(2+) -mediated intracellular cascades may play important roles in physiology (angiogenesis) and pathology (inflammation and atherogenesis). Changes in molecular (up-regulation, affinity, and conformational states) and cellular (distribution, association with membranes) properties of the α7AChR related to angiogenesis (wound-repair cell migration) and atherogenesis (alterations in cholesterol content) were studied in living endothelial cells, with the aim of determining whether such changes constitute early markers of inflammatory response. The combination of pharmacological, biochemical, and fluorescence microscopy tools showed that α7AChRs in rat arterial endothelial (RAEC) and human venous endothelial (HUVEC) cells occur at extremely low expression levels (∼50 fmol/mg protein) but undergo agonist-induced up-regulation at relatively high nicotine concentrations (∼300-fold with 50 µM ligand), increasing their cell-surface exposure. When analyzed in terms of cold Triton X-100 solubility and subcellular distribution, α7AChRs occur in the "non-raft" subcellular membrane fractions. Acute cholesterol depletion reduced not only cholesterol levels but also the number of cell-surface α7AChRs. Nicotine exposure markedly stimulated cell migration and accelerated wound repair, which drastically diminished in cells deprived of the sterol. The angiogenic effect of nicotine appears to be synergistic with cholesterol content. Finally, the apparent K(D) of α7AChRs for the open-channel blocker crystal violet was found to be ∼600-fold lower in receptor-enriched membranes obtained from up-regulated HUVEC.

  20. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) at zebrafish red and white muscle show different properties during development.

    PubMed

    Ahmed, Kazi T; Ali, Declan W

    2016-08-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are highly expressed at the vertebrate neuromuscular junction (NMJ) where they are required for muscle activation. Understanding the factors that underlie NMJ development is critical for a full understanding of muscle function. In this study we performed whole cell and outside-out patch clamp recordings, and single-cell RT-qPCR from zebrafish red and white muscle to examine the properties of nAChRs during the first 5 days of development. In red fibers miniature endplate currents (mEPCs) exhibit single exponential time courses at 1.5 days postfertilization (dpf) and double exponential time courses from 2 dpf onwards. In white fibers, mEPCs decay relatively slowly, with a single exponential component at 1.5 dpf. By 2 and 3 dpf, mEPC kinetics speed up, and decay with a double exponential component, and by 4 dpf the exponential decay reverts back to a single component. Single channel recordings confirm the presence of two main conductance classes of nAChRs (∼45 pS and ∼65 pS) in red fibers with multiple time courses. Two main conductance classes are also present in white fibers (∼55 pS and ∼73 pS), but they exhibit shorter mean open times by 5 dpf compared with red muscle. RT-qPCR of mRNA for nicotinic receptor subunits supports a switch from γ to ε subunits in white fibers but not in red. Our findings provide a developmental profile of mEPC properties from red and white fibers in embryonic and larval zebrafish, and reveal previously unknown differences between the NMJs of these muscle fibers.© 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 76: 916-936, 2016.

  1. A Novel Inhibitor of α9α10 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors from Conus vexillum Delineates a New Conotoxin Superfamily

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Sulan; Christensen, Sean; Zhangsun, Dongting; Wu, Yong; Hu, Yuanyan; Zhu, Xiaopeng; Chhabra, Sandeep; Norton, Raymond S.; McIntosh, J. Michael

    2013-01-01

    Conotoxins (CTxs) selectively target a range of ion channels and receptors, making them widely used tools for probing nervous system function. Conotoxins have been previously grouped into superfamilies according to signal sequence and into families based on their cysteine framework and biological target. Here we describe the cloning and characterization of a new conotoxin, from Conus vexillum, named αB-conotoxin VxXXIVA. The peptide does not belong to any previously described conotoxin superfamily and its arrangement of Cys residues is unique among conopeptides. Moreover, in contrast to previously characterized conopeptide toxins, which are expressed initially as prepropeptide precursors with a signal sequence, a ‘‘pro’’ region, and the toxin-encoding region, the precursor sequence of αB-VxXXIVA lacks a ‘‘pro’’ region. The predicted 40-residue mature peptide, which contains four Cys, was synthesized in each of the three possible disulfide arrangements. Investigation of the mechanism of action of αB-VxXXIVA revealed that the peptide is a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) antagonist with greatest potency against the α9α10 subtype. 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectra indicated that all three αB-VxXXIVA isomers were poorly structured in aqueous solution. This was consistent with circular dichroism (CD) results which showed that the peptides were unstructured in buffer, but adopted partially helical conformations in aqueous trifluoroethanol (TFE) solution. The α9α10 nAChR is an important target for the development of analgesics and cancer chemotherapeutics, and αB-VxXXIVA represents a novel ligand with which to probe the structure and function of this protein. PMID:23382933

  2. Nicotine prevents synaptic impairment induced by amyloid-β oligomers through α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor activation.

    PubMed

    Inestrosa, Nibaldo C; Godoy, Juan A; Vargas, Jessica Y; Arrazola, Macarena S; Rios, Juvenal A; Carvajal, Francisco J; Serrano, Felipe G; Farias, Ginny G

    2013-09-01

    An emerging view on Alzheimer disease's (AD) pathogenesis considers amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers as a key factor in synaptic impairment and rodent spatial memory decline. Alterations in the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR) have been implicated in AD pathology. Herein, we report that nicotine, an unselective α7-nAChR agonist, protects from morphological and synaptic impairments induced by Aβ oligomers. Interestingly, nicotine prevents both early postsynaptic impairment and late presynaptic damage induced by Aβ oligomers through the α7-nAChR/phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathway. On the other hand, a cross-talk between α7-nAChR and the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway was revealed by the following facts: (1) nicotine stabilizes β-catenin, in a concentration-dependent manner; (2) nicotine prevents Aβ-induced loss of β-catenin through the α7-nAChR; and (3) activation of canonical Wnt/β-catenin signaling induces α7-nAChR expression. Analysis of the α7-nAChR promoter indicates that this receptor is a new Wnt target gene. Taken together, these results demonstrate that nicotine prevents memory deficits and synaptic impairment induced by Aβ oligomers. In addition, nicotine improves memory in young APP/PS1 transgenic mice before extensive amyloid deposition and senile plaque development, and also in old mice where senile plaques have already formed. Activation of the α7-nAChR/PI3K signaling pathway and its cross-talk with the Wnt signaling pathway might well be therapeutic targets for potential AD treatments.

  3. Calcium signalling mediated by the α9 acetylcholine receptor in a cochlear cell line from the Immortomouse

    PubMed Central

    Jagger, D J; Griesinger, C B; Rivolta, M N; Holley, M C; Ashmore, J F

    2000-01-01

    We have investigated the characteristics of the α9 acetylcholine receptor (α9AChR) expressed in hair cell precursors in an immortalized cell line UB/OC-2 developed from the organ of Corti of the transgenic H-2Kb-tsA58 mouse (the Immortomouse) using both calcium imaging and whole-cell recording. Ratiometric measurements of fura-2 fluorescence revealed an increase of intracellular calcium concentration in cells when challenged with 10 μM ACh. The calcium increase was seen in 66 % of the cells grown at 39 °C in differentiated conditions. A smaller fraction (34 %) of cells grown at 33 °C in proliferative conditions responded. Caffeine (10 mM) elevated cell calcium. In the absence of caffeine, the majority of imaged cells responded only once to ACh. A small proportion (< 2 % of the total) responded with an increase in intracellular calcium to multiple ACh presentations. Pretreatment with caffeine inhibited all calcium responses to ACh. In whole-cell tight-seal recordings 10 μM ACh activated an inward, non-selective cation current. The reversal potential of the ACh-activated inward current was dependent on the extracellular calcium concentration with an estimated PCa/PNa of 80 for the α9 receptor at physiological calcium levels. The data indicate that ACh activates a calcium-permeable channel α9AChR in UB/OC-2 cells and that the channel has a significantly higher calcium permeability than other AChRs. The results indicate that the α9AChR may be able to elevate intracellular calcium levels in hair cells both directly and via store release. PMID:10944169

  4. Stabilization of acetylcholine receptors at the neuromuscular synapse: the role of the nerve.

    PubMed

    Ramsay, D A; Drachman, D B; Drachman, R J; Stanley, E F

    1992-05-29

    The majority of acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) at innervated neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) are stable, with half-lives averaging about 11 days in rodent muscles. In addition to the stable AChRs, approximately 18% of AChRs at these innervated junctions are rapidly turned over (RTOs), with half lives of less than 24 h. We have postulated that RTOs may be precursors of stable AChRs, and that the motor nerve may influence their stabilization. This hypothesis was tested by: (i) labeling AChRs in mouse sternomastoid (SM) muscles with 125I-alpha-BuTx; (ii) denervating one SM muscle in each mouse, and (iii) following the fate of the labeled AChRs through a 5-day period when RTOs were either stabilized or degraded. The hypothesis predicts that denervation should preclude stabilization of RTOs, resulting in a deficit of stable AChRs in denervated muscles. The results showed a highly significant (P less than 0.002) deficit of stable AChRs in denervated as compared with innervated muscles. Control experiments excluded the possibility that this deficit could be attributed to independent accelerated degradation of either RTOs or pre-existing stable AChRs. The observed deficit was quantitatively consistent with the deficit predicted by a mathematical model based on interruption of stabilization following denervation. We conclude that: (i) the observed deficit after denervation of NMJs is due to failure of stabilization of pre-existing RTOs; (ii) RTOs at normally innervated NMJs are precursors of stable AChRs; (iii) stabilization occurs after the insertion of AChRs at NMJs, and (iv) motor nerves play a key role in stabilization of RTOs. The concept of receptor stabilization has important implications for understanding the biology of the neuromuscular junction and post-synaptic plasticity.

  5. 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

  6. Up-regulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in menthol cigarette smokers

    PubMed Central

    Brody, Arthur L; Mukhin, Alexey G; La Charite, Jaime; Ta, Karen; Farahi, Judah; Sugar, Catherine A.; Mamoun, Michael S.; Vellios, Evan; Archie, Meena; Kozman, Maggie; Phuong, Jonathan; Arlorio, Franca; Mandelkern, Mark A.

    2013-01-01

    One-third of smokers primarily use menthol cigarettes and usage of these cigarettes leads to elevated serum nicotine levels and more difficulty quitting in standard treatment programmes. Previous brain imaging studies demonstrate that smoking (without regard to cigarette type) leads to up-regulation of β2*-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). We sought to determine if menthol cigarette usage results in greater nAChR up-regulation than non-menthol cigarette usage. Altogether, 114 participants (22 menthol cigarette smokers, 41 non-menthol cigarette smokers and 51 non-smokers) underwent positron emission tomography scanning using the α4β2* nAChR radioligand 2-[18F]fluoro-A-85380 (2-FA). In comparing menthol to non-menthol cigarette smokers, an overall test of 2-FA total volume of distribution values revealed a significant between-group difference, resulting from menthol smokers having 9–28% higher α4β2* nAChR densities than non-menthol smokers across regions. In comparing the entire group of smokers to non-smokers, an overall test revealed a significant between-group difference, resulting from smokers having higher α4β2* nAChR levels in all regions studied (36–42%) other than thalamus (3%). Study results demonstrate that menthol smokers have greater up-regulation of nAChRs than non-menthol smokers. This difference is presumably related to higher nicotine exposure in menthol smokers, although other mechanisms for menthol influencing receptor density are possible. These results provide additional information about the severity of menthol cigarette use and may help explain why these smokers have more trouble quitting in standard treatment programmes. PMID:23171716

  7. Catch-and-Hold Activation of Muscle Acetylcholine Receptors Having Transmitter Binding Site Mutations

    PubMed Central

    Purohit, Prasad; Bruhova, Iva; Gupta, Shaweta; Auerbach, Anthony

    2014-01-01

    Agonists turn on receptors because their target sites have a higher affinity in the active versus resting conformation of the protein. We used single-channel electrophysiology to measure the lower-affinity (LA) and higher-affinity (HA) equilibrium dissociation constants for acetylcholine in adult-type muscle mouse nicotinic receptors (AChRs) having mutations of agonist binding site amino acids. For a series of agonists and for all mutations of αY93, αG147, αW149, αY190, αY198, εW55, and δW57, the change in LA binding energy was approximately half that in HA binding energy. The results were analyzed as a linear free energy relationship between LA and HA agonist binding, the slope of which (κ) gives the fraction of the overall binding chemical potential where the LA complex is established. The linear correlation between LA and HA binding energies suggests that the overall binding process is by an integrated mechanism (catch-and-hold). For the agonist and the above mutations, κ ∼ 0.5, but side-chain substitutions of two residues had a slope that was significantly higher (0.90; αG153) or lower (0.25; εP121). The results suggest that backbone rearrangements in loop B, loop C, and the non-α surface participate in both LA binding and the LA ↔ HA affinity switch. It appears that all of the intermediate steps in AChR activation comprise a single, energetically coupled process. PMID:24988344

  8. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-04-01

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

  10. α6-Containing Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in Midbrain Dopamine Neurons are Poised to Govern Dopamine-Mediated Behaviors and Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Berry, Jennifer N.; Engle, Staci E.; McIntosh, J. Michael; Drenan, Ryan M.

    2015-01-01

    Acetylcholine acts through nicotinic and muscarinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptors in ventral midbrain and striatal areas to influence dopamine (DA) transmission. This cholinergic control of DA transmission is important for processes such as attention and motivated behavior, and is manipulated by nicotine in tobacco products. Identifying and characterizing the key ACh receptors involved in cholinergic control of DA transmission could lead to small molecule therapeutics for treating disorders involving attention, addiction, Parkinson’s disease, and schizophrenia. α6-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are highly and specifically expressed in midbrain DA neurons, making them an attractive drug target. Here, we used genetic, pharmacological, behavioral, and biophysical approaches to study this nAChR subtype. For many experiments, we used mice expressing mutant α6 nAChRs (“α6L9S” mice) that increase the sensitivity of these receptors to agonists such as ACh and nicotine. Taking advantage of a simple behavioral phenotype exhibited by α6L9S mice, we compared the ability of full versus partial α6* nAChR agonists to activate α6* nAChRs in vivo. Using local infusions of both agonists and antagonists into brain, we demonstrate that neurons and nAChRs in the midbrain are sufficient to account for this behavioral response. To complement these behavioral studies, we studied the ability of in vivo α6* nAChR activation to support plasticity changes in midbrain DA neurons that are relevant to behavioral sensitization and addiction. By coupling local infusion of drugs and brain slice patch clamp electrophysiology, we show that activating α6* nAChRs in midbrain DA areas is sufficient to enhance glutamatergic transmission in VTA DA neurons. Together, these results from in vivo studies strongly suggest that α6* nAChRs expressed by VTA DA neurons are positioned to strongly influence both DA-mediated behaviors and the induction of synaptic plasticity by

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  12. Nicotine exposure and the progression of chronic kidney disease: role of the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Rezonzew, Gabriel; Chumley, Phillip; Feng, Wenguang; Hua, Ping; Siegal, Gene P; Jaimes, Edgar A

    2012-07-15

    Clinical studies have established the role of cigarette smoking as a risk factor in the progression of chronic kidney disease (CKD). We have shown that nicotine promotes mesangial cell proliferation and hypertrophy via nonneuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). The α7-nAChR is one of the most important subunits of the nAChRs. These studies were designed to test the hypothesis that nicotine worsens renal injury in rats with 5/6 nephrectomy (5/6Nx) and that the α7-nAChR subunit is required for these effects. We studied five different groups: Sham, 5/6Nx, 5/6Nx + nicotine (Nic; 100 μg/ml dry wt), 5/6Nx + Nic + α7-nAChR blocker methyllicaconitine (MLA; 3 mg·kg(-1)·day(-1) sq), and Sham + Nic. Blood pressure was measured by the tail-cuff method, and urine was collected for proteinuria. After 12 wk, the rats were euthanized and kidneys were collected. We observed expression of the α7-nAChR in the proximal and distal tubules. The administration of nicotine induced a small increase in blood pressure and resulted in cotinine levels similar to those found in the plasma of smokers. In 5/6Nx rats, the administration of nicotine significantly increased urinary protein excretion (onefold), worsened the glomerular injury score and increased fibronectin (∼ 50%), NADPH oxidase 4 (NOX4; ∼100%), and transforming growth factor-β expression (∼200%). The administration of nicotine to sham rats increased total proteinuria but not albuminuria, suggesting direct effects on tubular protein reabsorption. These effects were prevented by MLA, demonstrating a critical role for the α7-nAChR as a mediator of the effects of nicotine in the progression of CKD.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  14. Inhibition of the Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors by Cobra Venom α-Neurotoxins: Is There a Perspective in Lung Cancer Treatment?

    PubMed Central

    Alama, Angela; Bruzzo, Cristina; Cavalieri, Zita; Forlani, Alessandra; Utkin, Yuri; Casciano, Ida; Romani, Massimo

    2011-01-01

    Nicotine exerts its oncogenic effects through the binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and the activation of downstream pathways that block apoptosis and promote neo-angiogenesis. The nAChRs of the α7 subtype are present on a wide variety of cancer cells and their inhibition by cobra venom neurotoxins has been proposed in several articles and reviews as a potential innovative lung cancer therapy. However, since part of the published results was recently retracted, we believe that the antitumoral activity of cobra venom neurotoxins needs to be independently re-evaluated. We determined the activity of α-neurotoxins from Naja atra (short-chain neurotoxin, α-cobrotoxin) and Naja kaouthia (long-chain neurotoxin, α-cobratoxin) in vitro by cytotoxicity measurements in 5 lung cancer cell lines, by colony formation assay with α7nAChRs expressing and non-expressing cell lines and in vivo by assessing tumor growth in an orthotopic Non-Obese Diabetic/Severe Combined Immunodeficient (NOD/SCID) mouse model system utilizing different treatment schedules and dosages. No statistically significant reduction in tumor growth was observed in the treatment arms in comparison to the control for both toxins. Paradoxically α-cobrotoxin from Naja atra showed the tendency to enhance tumor growth although, even in this case, the statistical significance was not reached. In conclusion our results show that, in contrast with other reports, the nAChR inhibitors α-cobratoxin from N. kaouthia and α-cobrotoxin from N. atra neither suppressed tumor growth nor prolonged the survival of the treated animals. PMID:21695184

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  16. Specificity of g protein-coupled receptor kinase 6-mediated phosphorylation and regulation of single-cell m3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor signaling.

    PubMed

    Willets, Jonathon M; Mistry, Rajendra; Nahorski, Stefan R; Challiss, R A John

    2003-11-01

    Previously we have shown that G protein-coupled receptor kinase (GRK) 6 plays a major role in the regulation of the human M3 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (M3 mAChR) in the human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y. However, 30-fold overexpression of the catalytically inactive, dominant-negative K215RGRK6 produced only a 50% suppression of M3 mAChR phosphorylation and desensitization. Here, we have attempted to determine whether other endogenous kinases play a role in the regulation of M3 mAChR signaling. In contrast to the clear attenuating effect of K215RGRK6 expression on M3 mAChR regulation, dominant-negative forms of GRKs (K220RGRK2, K220RGRK3, K215RGRK5) and casein kinase 1alpha (K46RCK1alpha) were without effect. In addition, inhibition of a variety of second-messenger-regulated kinases and the tyrosine kinase Src also had no effect upon agonist-stimulated M3 mAChR regulation. To investigate further the desensitization process we have followed changes in inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate in single SHSY5Y cells using the pleckstrin homology domain of PLCdelta1 tagged with green fluorescent protein (eGFP-PHPLCdelta1). Stimulation of cells with approximate EC50 concentrations of agonist before and after a desensitizing period of agonist exposure resulted in a marked attenuation of the latter response. Altered GRK6 activity, through overexpression of wild-type GRK6 or K215RGRK6, enhanced or reduced the degree of M3 mAChR desensitization, respectively. Taken together, our data indicate that M3 mAChR desensitization is mediated by GRK6 in human SH-SY5Y cells, and we show that receptor desensitization of phospholipase C signaling can be monitored in 'real-time' in single, living cells. PMID:14573754

  17. Non-competitive Inhibition of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors by Ladybird Beetle Alkaloids.

    PubMed

    Leong, Ron L; Xing, Hong; Braekman, Jean-Claude; Kem, William R

    2015-10-01

    Ladybird beetles (Family Coccinellidae) secrete an alkaloid rich venom from their leg joints that protects them from predators. Coccinellines, the major venom constituents, are alkaloids composed of three fused piperidine rings that share a common nitrogen atom. Although many coccinellines have been isolated and chemically characterized, their pharmacological properties are essentially unknown. Using radioligand binding and functional assays we investigated the actions of several coccinellines on skeletal muscle and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). The alkaloids were shown to displace the specific binding of tritiated piperidyl-N-(1-(2-thienyl)cyclohexyl)-3,4-piperidine ([(3)H]-TCP), which has been shown to bind deep within the ion channel of the electric fish (Torpedo) muscle nAChR. The stereoisomers precoccinelline and hippodamine (whose nitrogens are predicted to be ionized at physiological pH) and their respective analogs N-methyl-precoccinelline and N-methyl-hippodamine (whose quaternary nitrogens are permanently charged) displayed similar IC50s for inhibition of [(3)H]-TCP binding. However, the corresponding precoccinelline and hippodamine N-oxides, coccinelline and convergine (which have an electronegative oxygen bonded to an electropositive nitrogen) displayed significantly higher binding IC50s. Finally, exochomine, a dimeric coccinelline containing the hippodamine structure, displayed the highest IC50 (lowest affinity) for displacing specific [(3)H]-TCP binding. The presence of a desensitizing concentration (10(-3) M) of carbachol (CCh) had little or no effect on the affinity of the Torpedo nAChR for the three coccinellines tested. High concentrations of the coccinellid alkaloids did not affect binding of [(3)H]-cytisine to Torpedo receptor ACh binding sites. Inhibition of the alpha7 nAChR with pre-equilibrated precoccinelline was insurmountable with respect to ACh concentration. We conclude that the coccinellines bind to one or more

  18. Non-competitive Inhibition of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors by Ladybird Beetle Alkaloids.

    PubMed

    Leong, Ron L; Xing, Hong; Braekman, Jean-Claude; Kem, William R

    2015-10-01

    Ladybird beetles (Family Coccinellidae) secrete an alkaloid rich venom from their leg joints that protects them from predators. Coccinellines, the major venom constituents, are alkaloids composed of three fused piperidine rings that share a common nitrogen atom. Although many coccinellines have been isolated and chemically characterized, their pharmacological properties are essentially unknown. Using radioligand binding and functional assays we investigated the actions of several coccinellines on skeletal muscle and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). The alkaloids were shown to displace the specific binding of tritiated piperidyl-N-(1-(2-thienyl)cyclohexyl)-3,4-piperidine ([(3)H]-TCP), which has been shown to bind deep within the ion channel of the electric fish (Torpedo) muscle nAChR. The stereoisomers precoccinelline and hippodamine (whose nitrogens are predicted to be ionized at physiological pH) and their respective analogs N-methyl-precoccinelline and N-methyl-hippodamine (whose quaternary nitrogens are permanently charged) displayed similar IC50s for inhibition of [(3)H]-TCP binding. However, the corresponding precoccinelline and hippodamine N-oxides, coccinelline and convergine (which have an electronegative oxygen bonded to an electropositive nitrogen) displayed significantly higher binding IC50s. Finally, exochomine, a dimeric coccinelline containing the hippodamine structure, displayed the highest IC50 (lowest affinity) for displacing specific [(3)H]-TCP binding. The presence of a desensitizing concentration (10(-3) M) of carbachol (CCh) had little or no effect on the affinity of the Torpedo nAChR for the three coccinellines tested. High concentrations of the coccinellid alkaloids did not affect binding of [(3)H]-cytisine to Torpedo receptor ACh binding sites. Inhibition of the alpha7 nAChR with pre-equilibrated precoccinelline was insurmountable with respect to ACh concentration. We conclude that the coccinellines bind to one or more

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2014-01-01

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

  20. 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.

  1. Immunochemical demonstration that amino acids 360-377 of the acetylcholine receptor gamma-subunit are cytoplasmic

    PubMed Central

    1985-01-01

    Two monoclonal antibodies (mabs) previously prepared against Torpedo acetylcholine receptor are shown to recognize a synthetic nonadecapeptide corresponding to lys360-glu377 of the gamma subunit. The reaction was demonstrated by solid-phase enzyme-linked immunoabsorbent assays, by inhibition of binding of the mabs to receptor, and by immunoprecipitation of the peptide conjugated to bovine serum albumin. Immunogold electron microscopy on isolated postsynaptic membranes from Torpedo showed that both mabs bind to intracellular epitopes on the receptor. These results establish that amino acid residues 360-377 of the receptor gamma-subunit, and probably the analogous region of the delta-subunit, reside on the cytoplasmic side of the membrane. Since the primary structures of all four subunits suggest a common transmembrane arrangement, the corresponding domains of the alpha- and beta-subunits are probably also cytoplasmic. PMID:3972889

  2. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in the Pathophysiology of Al zheimer's Disease: The Role of Protein-Protein Interactions in Current and Future Treatment.

    PubMed

    Thomsen, Morten Skøtt; Andreasen, Jesper Tobias; Arvaniti, Maria; Kohlmeier, Kristi Anne

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been pursued for decades as potential molecular targets to treat cognitive dysfunction in Alzheimer's disease (AD) due to their positioning within regions of the brain critical in learning and memory, such as the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, and their demonstrated role in processes underlying cognition such as synaptic facilitation, and theta and gamma wave activity. Historically, activity at these receptors is facilitated in AD by use of drugs that increase the levels of their endogenous agonist acetylcholine, and more recently nAChR selective ligands have undergone clinical trials. Here we discuss recent findings suggesting that the expression and function of nAChRs in AD may be regulated by direct interactions with specific proteins, including Lynx proteins, NMDA-receptors and the Wnt/β-catenin pathway, as well as β-amyloid. The ability of protein interactions to modify nAChR function adds a new level of complexity to cholinergic signaling in the brain that may be specifically altered in AD. It is currently not known to what degree current nAChR ligands affect these interactions, and it is possible that the difference in the clinical effect of nAChR ligands in AD is related to differences in their ability to modulate nAChR protein interactions, rather than their effects on ion flow through the receptors. Drugs designed to target these interactions may thus provide a new avenue for drug development to ameliorate cognitive symptoms in AD. Notably, the development of experimental drugs that specifically modulate these interactions may provide the opportunity to selectively affect those aspects of nAChR function that are affected in AD. PMID:26818866

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-01

    Nicotine has been found to improve cognition and reduce negative symptoms in schizophrenia and a genetic and pathophysiological link between the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and schizophrenia has been demonstrated. Therefore, there has been a large interest in developing drugs affecting the α7 nAChRs for schizophrenia. In the present study we investigated, in rats, the effects of a selective α7 agonist (PNU282987) and a α7 positive allosteric modulator (PAM; NS1738) alone and in combination with the atypical antipsychotic drug risperidone for their utility as adjunct treatment in schizophrenia. Moreover we also investigated their utility as adjunct treatment in depression in combination with the SSRI citalopram. We found that NS1738 and to some extent also PNU282987, potentiated a subeffective dose of risperidone in the conditioned avoidance response test. Both drugs also potentiated the effect of a sub-effective concentration of risperidone on NMDA-induced currents in pyramidal cells of the medial prefrontal cortex. Moreover, NS1738 and PNU282987 enhanced recognition memory in the novel object recognition test, when given separately. Both drugs also potentiated accumbal but not prefrontal risperidone-induced dopamine release. Finally, PNU282987 reduced immobility in the forced swim test, indicating an antidepressant-like effect. Taken together, our data support the utility of drugs targeting the α7 nAChRs, perhaps especially α7 PAMs, to potentiate the effect of atypical antipsychotic drugs. Moreover, our data suggest that α7 agonists and PAMs can be used to ameliorate cognitive symptoms in schizophrenia and depression. PMID:27474687

  5. Prostate stem cell antigen interacts with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and is affected in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Majbrit M; Arvaniti, Maria; Mikkelsen, Jens D; Michalski, Dominik; Pinborg, Lars H; Härtig, Wolfgang; Thomsen, Morten S

    2015-04-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder involving impaired cholinergic neurotransmission and dysregulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Ly-6/neurotoxin (Lynx) proteins have been shown to modulate cognition and neural plasticity by binding to nAChR subtypes and modulating their function. Hence, changes in nAChR regulatory proteins such as Lynx proteins could underlie the dysregulation of nAChRs in AD. Using Western blotting, we detected bands corresponding to the Lynx proteins prostate stem cell antigen (PSCA) and Lypd6 in human cortex indicating that both proteins are present in the human brain. We further showed that PSCA forms stable complexes with the α4 nAChR subunit and decreases nicotine-induced extracellular-signal regulated kinase phosphorylation in PC12 cells. In addition, we analyzed protein levels of PSCA and Lypd6 in postmortem tissue of medial frontal gyrus from AD patients and found significantly increased PSCA levels (approximately 70%). In contrast, no changes in Lypd6 levels were detected. In concordance with our findings in AD patients, PSCA levels were increased in the frontal cortex of triple transgenic mice with an AD-like pathology harboring human transgenes that cause both age-dependent β-amyloidosis and tauopathy, whereas Tg2576 mice, which display β-amyloidosis only, had unchanged PSCA levels compared to wild-type animals. These findings identify PSCA as a nAChR-binding protein in the human brain that is affected in AD, suggesting that PSCA-nAChR interactions may be involved in the cognitive dysfunction observed in AD. PMID:25680266

  6. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha 7 regulates cAMP signal within lipid rafts.

    PubMed

    Oshikawa, Jin; Toya, Yoshiyuki; Fujita, Takayuki; Egawa, Masato; Kawabe, Junichi; Umemura, Satoshi; Ishikawa, Yoshihiro

    2003-09-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are made of multiple subunits with diversified functions. The nAChR alpha 7-subunit has a property of high Ca2+ permeability and may have specific functions a