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Sample records for helps regulate synaptic

  1. The atypical cadherin flamingo regulates synaptogenesis and helps prevent axonal and synaptic degeneration in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Bao, Hong; Berlanga, Monica L; Xue, Mingshan; Hapip, Sara M; Daniels, Richard W; Mendenhall, John M; Alcantara, Adriana A; Zhang, Bing

    2007-04-01

    The formation of synaptic connections with target cells and maintenance of axons are highly regulated and crucial for neuronal function. The atypical cadherin and G-protein-coupled receptor Flamingo and its orthologs in amphibians and mammals have been shown to regulate cell polarity, dendritic and axonal growth, and neural tube closure. However, the role of Flamingo in synapse formation and function and in axonal health remains poorly understood. Here we show that fmi mutations cause a significant increase in the number of ectopic synapses on muscles and result in the formation of novel en passant synapses along axons, and unique presynaptic varicosities, including active zones, within axons. The fmi mutations also cause defective synaptic responses in a small subset of muscles, an age-dependent loss of muscle innervation and a drastic degeneration of axons in 3rd instar larvae without an apparent loss of neurons. Neuronal expression of Flamingo rescues all of these synaptic and axonal defects and larval lethality. Based on these observations, we propose that Flamingo is required in neurons for synaptic target selection, synaptogenesis, the survival of axons and synapses, and adult viability. These findings shed new light on a possible role for Flamingo in progressive neurodegenerative diseases.

  2. Circadian Regulation of Synaptic Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Frank, Marcos G

    2016-07-13

    Circadian rhythms refer to oscillations in biological processes with a period of approximately 24 h. In addition to the sleep/wake cycle, there are circadian rhythms in metabolism, body temperature, hormone output, organ function and gene expression. There is also evidence of circadian rhythms in synaptic plasticity, in some cases driven by a master central clock and in other cases by peripheral clocks. In this article, I review the evidence for circadian influences on synaptic plasticity. I also discuss ways to disentangle the effects of brain state and rhythms on synaptic plasticity.

  3. Circadian Regulation of Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Frank, Marcos G.

    2016-01-01

    Circadian rhythms refer to oscillations in biological processes with a period of approximately 24 h. In addition to the sleep/wake cycle, there are circadian rhythms in metabolism, body temperature, hormone output, organ function and gene expression. There is also evidence of circadian rhythms in synaptic plasticity, in some cases driven by a master central clock and in other cases by peripheral clocks. In this article, I review the evidence for circadian influences on synaptic plasticity. I also discuss ways to disentangle the effects of brain state and rhythms on synaptic plasticity. PMID:27420105

  4. Neuroimmune regulation of homeostatic synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Pribiag, Horia; Stellwagen, David

    2014-03-01

    Homeostatic synaptic plasticity refers to a set of negative-feedback mechanisms that are used by neurons to maintain activity within a functional range. While it is becoming increasingly clear that homeostatic regulation of synapse function is a key principle in the nervous system, the molecular details of this regulation are only beginning to be uncovered. Recent evidence implicates molecules classically associated with the peripheral immune system in the modulation of homeostatic synaptic plasticity. In particular, the pro-inflammatory cytokine TNFα, class I major histocompatibility complex, and neuronal pentraxin 2 are essential in the regulation of the compensatory synaptic response that occurs in response to prolonged neuronal inactivity. This review will present and discuss current evidence implicating neuroimmune molecules in the homeostatic regulation of synapse function. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity'.

  5. Lateral regulation of synaptic transmission by astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Covelo, A; Araque, A

    2016-05-26

    Fifteen years ago the concept of the "tripartite synapse" was proposed to conceptualize the functional view that astrocytes are integral elements of synapses. The signaling exchange between astrocytes and neurons within the tripartite synapse results in the synaptic regulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity through an autocrine form of communication. However, recent evidence indicates that the astrocyte synaptic regulation is not restricted to the active tripartite synapse but can be manifested through astrocyte signaling at synapses relatively distant from active synapses, a process termed lateral astrocyte synaptic regulation. This phenomenon resembles the classical heterosynaptic modulation but is mechanistically different because it involves astrocytes and its properties critically depend on the morphological and functional features of astrocytes. Therefore, the functional concept of the tripartite synapse as a fundamental unit must be expanded to include the interaction between tripartite synapses. Through lateral synaptic regulation, astrocytes serve as an active processing bridge for synaptic interaction and crosstalk between synapses with no direct neuronal connectivity, supporting the idea that neural network function results from the coordinated activity of astrocytes and neurons.

  6. GPCR Mediated Regulation of Synaptic Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Betke, Katherine M.; Wells, Christopher A.; Hamm, Heidi E.

    2012-01-01

    Synaptic transmission is a finely regulated mechanism of neuronal communication. The release of neurotransmitter at the synapse is not only the reflection of membrane depolarization events, but rather, is the summation of interactions between ion channels, G protein coupled receptors, second messengers, and the exocytotic machinery itself which exposes the components within a synaptic vesicle to the synaptic cleft. The focus of this review is to explore the role of G protein signaling as it relates to neurotransmission, as well as to discuss the recently determined inhibitory mechanism of Gβγ dimers acting directly on the exocytotic machinery proteins to inhibit neurotransmitter release. PMID:22307060

  7. Actin Out: Regulation of the Synaptic Cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Spence, Erin F.; Soderling, Scott H.

    2015-01-01

    The small size of dendritic spines belies the elaborate role they play in excitatory synaptic transmission and ultimately complex behaviors. The cytoskeletal architecture of the spine is predominately composed of actin filaments. These filaments, which at first glance might appear simple, are also surprisingly complex. They dynamically assemble into different structures and serve as a platform for orchestrating the elaborate responses of the spine during spinogenesis and experience-dependent plasticity. Multiple mutations associated with human neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders involve genes that encode regulators of the synaptic cytoskeleton. A major, unresolved question is how the disruption of specific actin filament structures leads to the onset and progression of complex synaptic and behavioral phenotypes. This review will cover established and emerging mechanisms of actin cytoskeletal remodeling and how this influences specific aspects of spine biology that are implicated in disease. PMID:26453304

  8. Ceramidase Regulates Synaptic Vesicle Exocytosis and Trafficking

    PubMed Central

    Rohrbough, Jeffrey; Rushton, Emma; Palanker, Laura; Woodruff, Elvin; Matthies, Heinrich J. G.; Acharya, Usha; Acharya, Jairaj K.; Broadie, Kendal

    2009-01-01

    A screen for Drosophila synaptic dysfunction mutants identified slug-a-bed (slab). The slab gene encodes ceramidase, a central enzyme in sphingolipid metabolism and regulation. Sphingolipids are major constituents of lipid rafts, membrane domains with roles in vesicle trafficking, and signaling pathways. Null slab mutants arrest as fully developed embryos with severely reduced movement. The SLAB protein is widely expressed in different tissues but enriched in neurons at all stages of development. Targeted neuronal expression of slab rescues mutant lethality, demonstrating the essential neuronal function of the protein. C5-ceramide applied to living preparations is rapidly accumulated at neuromuscular junction (NMJ) synapses dependent on the SLAB expression level, indicating that synaptic sphingolipid trafficking and distribution is regulated by SLAB function. Evoked synaptic currents at slab mutant NMJs are reduced by 50–70%, whereas postsynaptic glutamate-gated currents are normal, demonstrating a specific presynaptic impairment. Hypertonic saline-evoked synaptic vesicle fusion is similarly impaired by 50–70%, demonstrating a loss of readily releasable vesicles. In addition, FM1-43 dye uptake is reduced in slab mutant presynaptic terminals, indicating a smaller cycling vesicle pool. Ultrastructural analyses of mutants reveal a normal vesicle distribution clustered and docked at active zones, but fewer vesicles in reserve regions, and a twofold to threefold increased incidence of vesicles linked together and tethered at the plasma membrane. These results indicate that SLAB ceramidase function controls presynaptic terminal sphingolipid composition to regulate vesicle fusion and trafficking, and thus the strength and reliability of synaptic transmission. PMID:15356190

  9. Synaptic adhesion molecule IgSF11 regulates synaptic transmission and plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Shin, Hyewon; van Riesen, Christoph; Whitcomb, Daniel; Warburton, Julia M.; Jo, Jihoon; Kim, Doyoun; Kim, Sun Gyun; Um, Seung Min; Kwon, Seok-kyu; Kim, Myoung-Hwan; Roh, Junyeop Daniel; Woo, Jooyeon; Jun, Heejung; Lee, Dongmin; Mah, Won; Kim, Hyun; Kaang, Bong-Kiun; Cho, Kwangwook; Rhee, Jeong-Seop; Choquet, Daniel; Kim, Eunjoon

    2016-01-01

    Summary Synaptic adhesion molecules regulate synapse development and plasticity through mechanisms including trans-synaptic adhesion and recruitment of diverse synaptic proteins. We report here that the immunoglobulin superfamily member 11 (IgSF11), a homophilic adhesion molecule preferentially expressed in the brain, is a novel and dual-binding partner of the postsynaptic scaffolding protein PSD-95 and AMPAR glutamate receptors (AMPARs). IgSF11 requires PSD-95 binding for its excitatory synaptic localization. In addition, IgSF11 stabilizes synaptic AMPARs, as shown by IgSF11 knockdown-induced suppression of AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission and increased surface mobility of AMPARs, measured by high-throughput, single-molecule tracking. IgSF11 deletion in mice leads to suppression of AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission in the dentate gyrus and long-term potentiation in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. IgSF11 does not regulate the functional characteristics of AMPARs, including desensitization, deactivation, or recovery. These results suggest that IgSF11 regulates excitatory synaptic transmission and plasticity through its tripartite interactions with PSD-95 and AMPARs. PMID:26595655

  10. Regulation of NMDA-receptor synaptic transmission by Wnt signaling

    PubMed Central

    Cerpa, Waldo; Gambrill, Abigail; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C.; Barria, Andres

    2011-01-01

    Wnt ligands are secreted glycoproteins controlling gene expression and cytoskeleton reorganization involved in embryonic development of the nervous system. However, their role in later stages of brain development, particularly in the regulation of established synaptic connections is not known. We found that Wnt-5a acutely and specifically up-regulates synaptic NMDAR currents in rat hippocampal slices facilitating induction of LTP, a cellular model of learning and memory. This effect requires an increase in postsynaptic Ca2+ and activation of non-canonical downstream effectors of the Wnt signaling pathway. In contrast, Wnt-7a, an activator of the canonical Wnt signaling pathway, has no effect on NMDAR mediated synaptic transmission. Moreover, endogenous Wnt ligands are necessary to maintain basal NMDAR synaptic transmission adjusting the threshold for synaptic potentiation. This novel role for Wnt ligands provides a mechanism for Wnt signaling to acutely modulate synaptic plasticity and brain function in later stages of development and in the mature organism. PMID:21715611

  11. Calcineurin mediates homeostatic synaptic plasticity by regulating retinoic acid synthesis

    PubMed Central

    Arendt, Kristin L.; Zhang, Zhenjie; Ganesan, Subhashree; Hintze, Maik; Shin, Maggie M.; Tang, Yitai; Cho, Ahryon; Graef, Isabella A.; Chen, Lu

    2015-01-01

    Homeostatic synaptic plasticity is a form of non-Hebbian plasticity that maintains stability of the network and fidelity for information processing in response to prolonged perturbation of network and synaptic activity. Prolonged blockade of synaptic activity decreases resting Ca2+ levels in neurons, thereby inducing retinoic acid (RA) synthesis and RA-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity; however, the signal transduction pathway that links reduced Ca2+-levels to RA synthesis remains unknown. Here we identify the Ca2+-dependent protein phosphatase calcineurin (CaN) as a key regulator for RA synthesis and homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Prolonged inhibition of CaN activity promotes RA synthesis in neurons, and leads to increased excitatory and decreased inhibitory synaptic transmission. These effects of CaN inhibitors on synaptic transmission are blocked by pharmacological inhibitors of RA synthesis or acute genetic deletion of the RA receptor RARα. Thus, CaN, acting upstream of RA, plays a critical role in gating RA signaling pathway in response to synaptic activity. Moreover, activity blockade-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity is absent in CaN knockout neurons, demonstrating the essential role of CaN in RA-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Interestingly, in GluA1 S831A and S845A knockin mice, CaN inhibitor- and RA-induced regulation of synaptic transmission is intact, suggesting that phosphorylation of GluA1 C-terminal serine residues S831 and S845 is not required for CaN inhibitor- or RA-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Thus, our study uncovers an unforeseen role of CaN in postsynaptic signaling, and defines CaN as the Ca2+-sensing signaling molecule that mediates RA-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity. PMID:26443861

  12. Ubiquitination-dependent mechanisms regulate synaptic growth and function.

    PubMed

    DiAntonio, A; Haghighi, A P; Portman, S L; Lee, J D; Amaranto, A M; Goodman, C S

    2001-07-26

    The covalent attachment of ubiquitin to cellular proteins is a powerful mechanism for controlling protein activity and localization. Ubiquitination is a reversible modification promoted by ubiquitin ligases and antagonized by deubiquitinating proteases. Ubiquitin-dependent mechanisms regulate many important processes including cell-cycle progression, apoptosis and transcriptional regulation. Here we show that ubiquitin-dependent mechanisms regulate synaptic development at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction (NMJ). Neuronal overexpression of the deubiquitinating protease fat facets leads to a profound disruption of synaptic growth control; there is a large increase in the number of synaptic boutons, an elaboration of the synaptic branching pattern, and a disruption of synaptic function. Antagonizing the ubiquitination pathway in neurons by expression of the yeast deubiquitinating protease UBP2 (ref. 5) also produces synaptic overgrowth and dysfunction. Genetic interactions between fat facets and highwire, a negative regulator of synaptic growth that has structural homology to a family of ubiquitin ligases, suggest that synaptic development may be controlled by the balance between positive and negative regulators of ubiquitination.

  13. Biochemical mechanisms for translational regulation in synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Klann, Eric; Dever, Thomas E

    2004-12-01

    Changes in gene expression are required for long-lasting synaptic plasticity and long-term memory in both invertebrates and vertebrates. Regulation of local protein synthesis allows synapses to control synaptic strength independently of messenger RNA synthesis in the cell body. Recent reports indicate that several biochemical signalling cascades couple neurotransmitter and neurotrophin receptors to translational regulatory factors in protein synthesis-dependent forms of synaptic plasticity and memory. In this review, we highlight these translational regulatory mechanisms and the signalling pathways that govern the expression of synaptic plasticity in response to specific types of neuronal stimulation.

  14. RhoGTPase Regulators Orchestrate Distinct Stages of Synaptic Development

    PubMed Central

    Martin-Vilchez, Samuel; Whitmore, Leanna; Asmussen, Hannelore; Zareno, Jessica; Horwitz, Rick; Newell-Litwa, Karen

    2017-01-01

    Small RhoGTPases regulate changes in post-synaptic spine morphology and density that support learning and memory. They are also major targets of synaptic disorders, including Autism. Here we sought to determine whether upstream RhoGTPase regulators, including GEFs, GAPs, and GDIs, sculpt specific stages of synaptic development. The majority of examined molecules uniquely regulate either early spine precursor formation or later maturation. Specifically, an activator of actin polymerization, the Rac1 GEF β-PIX, drives spine precursor formation, whereas both FRABIN, a Cdc42 GEF, and OLIGOPHRENIN-1, a RhoA GAP, regulate spine precursor elongation. However, in later development, a novel Rac1 GAP, ARHGAP23, and RhoGDIs inactivate actomyosin dynamics to stabilize mature synapses. Our observations demonstrate that specific combinations of RhoGTPase regulatory proteins temporally balance RhoGTPase activity during post-synaptic spine development. PMID:28114311

  15. BMP signaling and microtubule organization regulate synaptic strength

    PubMed Central

    Ball, Robin W.; Peled, Einat; Guerrero, Giovanna; Isacoff, Ehud Y.

    2015-01-01

    The strength of synaptic transmission between a neuron and multiple postsynaptic partners can vary considerably. We have studied synaptic heterogeneity using the glutamatergic Drosophila neuromuscular junction (NMJ), which contains multiple synaptic connections of varying strength between a motor axon and muscle fiber. In larval NMJs, there is a gradient of synaptic transmission from weak proximal to strong distal boutons. We imaged synaptic transmission with the postsynaptically targeted fluorescent calcium sensor SynapCam, to investigate the molecular pathways that determine synaptic strength and set up this gradient. We discovered that mutations in the Bone Morphogenetic Protein (BMP) signaling pathway disrupt production of strong distal boutons. We find that strong connections contain unbundled microtubules in the boutons, suggesting a role for microtubule organization in transmission strength. The spastin mutation, which disorganizes microtubules, disrupted the transmission gradient, supporting this interpretation. We propose that the BMP pathway, shown previously to function in the homeostatic regulation of synaptic growth, also boosts synaptic transmission in a spatially selective manner that depends on the microtubule system. PMID:25681521

  16. Neurexin regulates nighttime sleep by modulating synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Tong, Huawei; Li, Qian; Zhang, Zi Chao; Li, Yi; Han, Junhai

    2016-01-01

    Neurexins are cell adhesion molecules involved in synaptic formation and synaptic transmission. Mutations in neurexin genes are linked to autism spectrum disorders (ASDs), which are frequently associated with sleep problems. However, the role of neurexin-mediated synaptic transmission in sleep regulation is unclear. Here, we show that lack of the Drosophila α-neurexin homolog significantly reduces the quantity and quality of nighttime sleep and impairs sleep homeostasis. We report that neurexin expression in Drosophila mushroom body (MB) αβ neurons is essential for nighttime sleep. We demonstrate that reduced nighttime sleep in neurexin mutants is due to impaired αβ neuronal output, and show that neurexin functionally couples calcium channels (Cac) to regulate synaptic transmission. Finally, we determine that αβ surface (αβs) neurons release both acetylcholine and short neuropeptide F (sNPF), whereas αβ core (αβc) neurons release sNPF to promote nighttime sleep. Our findings reveal that neurexin regulates nighttime sleep by mediating the synaptic transmission of αβ neurons. This study elucidates the role of synaptic transmission in sleep regulation, and might offer insights into the mechanism of sleep disturbances in patients with autism disorders. PMID:27905548

  17. Differential Modulation of Synaptic Strength and Timing Regulate Synaptic Efficacy in a Motor Network

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Jessica M.; Kvarta, Mark D.; Lu, Jay Y. J.; Schneider, Lauren R.; Nadim, Farzan; Harris-Warrick, Ronald M.

    2011-01-01

    Neuromodulators modify network output by altering neuronal firing properties and synaptic strength at multiple sites; however, the functional importance of each site is often unclear. We determined the importance of monoamine modulation of a single synapse for regulation of network cycle frequency in the oscillatory pyloric network of the lobster. The pacemaker kernel of the pyloric network receives only one chemical synaptic feedback, an inhibitory synapse from the lateral pyloric (LP) neuron to the pyloric dilator (PD) neurons, which can limit cycle frequency. We measured the effects of dopamine (DA), octopamine (Oct), and serotonin (5HT) on the strength of the LP→PD synapse and the ability of the modified synapse to regulate pyloric cycle frequency. DA and Oct strengthened, whereas 5HT weakened, LP→PD inhibition. Surprisingly, the DA-strengthened LP→PD synapse lost its ability to slow the pyloric oscillations, whereas the 5HT-weakened LP→PD synapse gained a greater influence on the oscillations. These results are explained by monoamine modulation of factors that determine the firing phase of the LP neuron in each cycle. DA acts via multiple mechanisms to phase-advance the LP neuron into the pacemaker's refractory period, where the strengthened synapse has little effect. In contrast, 5HT phase-delays LP activity into a region of greater pacemaker sensitivity to LP synaptic input. Only Oct enhanced LP regulation of cycle period simply by enhancing LP→PD synaptic strength. These results show that modulation of the strength and timing of a synaptic input can differentially affect the synapse's efficacy in the network. PMID:21047938

  18. TARP phosphorylation regulates synaptic AMPA receptors through lipid bilayers.

    PubMed

    Sumioka, Akio; Yan, Dan; Tomita, Susumu

    2010-06-10

    Neurons use neurotransmitters to communicate across synapses, constructing neural circuits in the brain. AMPA-type glutamate receptors are the predominant excitatory neurotransmitter receptors mediating fast synaptic transmission. AMPA receptors localize at synapses by forming protein complexes with transmembrane AMPA receptor regulatory proteins (TARPs) and PSD-95-like membrane-associated guanylate kinases. Among the three classes of ionotropic glutamate receptors (AMPA, NMDA, and kainate type), AMPA receptor activity is most regulatable by neuronal activity to adjust synaptic strength. Here, we mutated the prototypical TARP, stargazin, and found that TARP phosphorylation regulates synaptic AMPA receptor activity in vivo. We also found that stargazin interacts with negatively charged lipid bilayers in a phosphorylation-dependent manner and that the lipid interaction inhibited stargazin binding to PSD-95. Cationic lipids dissociated stargazin from lipid bilayers and enhanced synaptic AMPA receptor activity in a stargazin phosphorylation-dependent manner. Thus, TARP phosphorylation plays a critical role in regulating AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission via a lipid bilayer interaction.

  19. IL-6 regulation of synaptic function in the CNS.

    PubMed

    Gruol, Donna L

    2015-09-01

    A growing body of evidence supports a role for glial-produced neuroimmune factors, including the cytokine IL-6, in CNS physiology and pathology. CNS expression of IL-6 has been documented in the normal CNS at low levels and at elevated levels in several neurodegenerative or psychiatric disease states as well as in CNS infection and injury. The altered CNS function associated with these conditions raises the possibility that IL-6 has neuronal or synaptic actions. Studies in in vitro and in vivo models confirmed this possibility and showed that IL-6 can regulate a number of important neuronal and synaptic functions including synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity, an important cellular mechanism of memory and learning. Behavioral studies in animal models provided further evidence of an important role for IL-6 as a regulator of CNS pathways that are critical to cognitive function. This review summarizes studies that have lead to our current state of knowledge. In spite of the progress that has been made, there is a need for a greater understanding of the physiological and pathophysiological actions of IL-6 in the CNS, the mechanisms underlying these actions, conditions that induce production of IL-6 in the CNS and therapeutic strategies that could ameliorate or promote IL-6 actions. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'Neuroimmunology and Synaptic Function'.

  20. TARP phosphorylation regulates synaptic AMPA receptors through lipid bilayers

    PubMed Central

    Sumioka, Akio; Yan, Dan; Tomita, Susumu

    2010-01-01

    Summary Neurons use neurotransmitters to communicate across synapses, constructing neural circuits in the brain. AMPA-type glutamate receptors are the predominant excitatory neurotransmitter receptors mediating fast synaptic transmission. AMPA receptors localize at synapses by forming protein complexes with transmembrane AMPA receptor regulatory proteins (TARPs) and PSD-95-like MAGUKs. Among the three classes of ionotropic glutamate receptors (AMPA-, NMDA, kainate-type), AMPA receptor activity is most regulatable by neuronal activity to adjust synaptic strength. Here, we mutated the prototypical TARP, stargazin, and found that TARP phosphorylation regulates synaptic AMPA receptor activity in vivo. We also found that stargazin interacts with negatively-charged lipid bilayers in its phosphorylation dependent manner, and that the lipid interaction inhibited stargazin binding to PSD-95. Cationic lipids dissociated stargazin from lipid bilayers and enhanced synaptic AMPA receptor activity in a stargazin phosphorylation-dependent manner. Thus, TARP phosphorylation plays a critical role in regulating AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission via a lipid bilayer interaction. PMID:20547132

  1. Synaptic microRNAs Coordinately Regulate Synaptic mRNAs: Perturbation by Chronic Alcohol Consumption

    PubMed Central

    Most, Dana; Leiter, Courtney; Blednov, Yuri A; Harris, R Adron; Mayfield, R Dayne

    2016-01-01

    Local translation of mRNAs in the synapse has a major role in synaptic structure and function. Chronic alcohol use causes persistent changes in synaptic mRNA expression, possibly mediated by microRNAs localized in the synapse. We profiled the transcriptome of synaptoneurosomes (SN) obtained from the amygdala of mice that consumed 20% ethanol (alcohol) in a 30-day continuous two-bottle choice test to identify the microRNAs that target alcohol-induced mRNAs. SN are membrane vesicles containing pre- and post-synaptic compartments of neurons and astroglia and are a unique model for studying the synaptic transcriptome. We previously showed that chronic alcohol regulates mRNA expression in a coordinated manner. Here, we examine microRNAs and mRNAs from the same samples to define alcohol-responsive synaptic microRNAs and their predicted interactions with targeted mRNAs. The aim of the study was to identify the microRNA–mRNA synaptic interactions that are altered by alcohol. This was accomplished by comparing the effect of alcohol in SN and total homogenate preparations from the same samples. We used a combination of unbiased bioinformatic methods (differential expression, correlation, co-expression, microRNA-mRNA target prediction, co-targeting, and cell type-specific analyses) to identify key alcohol-sensitive microRNAs. Prediction analysis showed that a subset of alcohol-responsive microRNAs was predicted to target many alcohol-responsive mRNAs, providing a bidirectional analysis for identifying microRNA–mRNA interactions. We found microRNAs and mRNAs with overlapping patterns of expression that correlated with alcohol consumption. Cell type-specific analysis revealed that a significant number of alcohol-responsive mRNAs and microRNAs were unique to glutamate neurons and were predicted to target each other. Chronic alcohol consumption appears to perturb the coordinated microRNA regulation of mRNAs in SN, a mechanism that may explain the aberrations in synaptic

  2. Synaptic microRNAs Coordinately Regulate Synaptic mRNAs: Perturbation by Chronic Alcohol Consumption.

    PubMed

    Most, Dana; Leiter, Courtney; Blednov, Yuri A; Harris, R Adron; Mayfield, R Dayne

    2016-01-01

    Local translation of mRNAs in the synapse has a major role in synaptic structure and function. Chronic alcohol use causes persistent changes in synaptic mRNA expression, possibly mediated by microRNAs localized in the synapse. We profiled the transcriptome of synaptoneurosomes (SN) obtained from the amygdala of mice that consumed 20% ethanol (alcohol) in a 30-day continuous two-bottle choice test to identify the microRNAs that target alcohol-induced mRNAs. SN are membrane vesicles containing pre- and post-synaptic compartments of neurons and astroglia and are a unique model for studying the synaptic transcriptome. We previously showed that chronic alcohol regulates mRNA expression in a coordinated manner. Here, we examine microRNAs and mRNAs from the same samples to define alcohol-responsive synaptic microRNAs and their predicted interactions with targeted mRNAs. The aim of the study was to identify the microRNA-mRNA synaptic interactions that are altered by alcohol. This was accomplished by comparing the effect of alcohol in SN and total homogenate preparations from the same samples. We used a combination of unbiased bioinformatic methods (differential expression, correlation, co-expression, microRNA-mRNA target prediction, co-targeting, and cell type-specific analyses) to identify key alcohol-sensitive microRNAs. Prediction analysis showed that a subset of alcohol-responsive microRNAs was predicted to target many alcohol-responsive mRNAs, providing a bidirectional analysis for identifying microRNA-mRNA interactions. We found microRNAs and mRNAs with overlapping patterns of expression that correlated with alcohol consumption. Cell type-specific analysis revealed that a significant number of alcohol-responsive mRNAs and microRNAs were unique to glutamate neurons and were predicted to target each other. Chronic alcohol consumption appears to perturb the coordinated microRNA regulation of mRNAs in SN, a mechanism that may explain the aberrations in synaptic

  3. Innervation regulates synaptic ribbons in lateral line mechanosensory hair cells.

    PubMed

    Suli, Arminda; Pujol, Remy; Cunningham, Dale E; Hailey, Dale W; Prendergast, Andrew; Rubel, Edwin W; Raible, David W

    2016-06-01

    Failure to form proper synapses in mechanosensory hair cells, the sensory cells responsible for hearing and balance, leads to deafness and balance disorders. Ribbons are electron-dense structures that tether synaptic vesicles to the presynaptic zone of mechanosensory hair cells where they are juxtaposed with the post-synaptic endings of afferent fibers. They are initially formed throughout the cytoplasm, and, as cells mature, ribbons translocate to the basolateral membrane of hair cells to form functional synapses. We have examined the effect of post-synaptic elements on ribbon formation and maintenance in the zebrafish lateral line system by observing mutants that lack hair cell innervation, wild-type larvae whose nerves have been transected and ribbons in regenerating hair cells. Our results demonstrate that innervation is not required for initial ribbon formation but suggest that it is crucial for regulating the number, size and localization of ribbons in maturing hair cells, and for ribbon maintenance at the mature synapse.

  4. Synaptic regulation of affective behaviors; role of BDNF

    PubMed Central

    Ninan, Ipe

    2013-01-01

    Brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a neurotrophin essential for nervous system development and synaptic plasticity, has been found to have a significant influence on affective behaviors. The notion that an impairment in BDNF signaling might be involved in affective disorders is originated primarily from the opposing effects of antidepressants and stress on BDNF signaling. Antidepressants enhance BDNF signaling and synaptic plasticity. On the other hand, negative environmental factors such as severe stress suppress BDNF signaling, impair synaptic activity and increase susceptibility to affective disorders. Postmortem studies provided strong support for decreased BDNF signaling in depressive disorders. Remarkably, studies in humans with a single nucleotide polymorphism in the BDNF gene, the BDNF Val66Met which affects regulated release of BDNF, showed profound deficits in hippocampal and prefrontal cortical (PFC) plasticity and cognitive behaviors. BDNF regulates synaptic mechanisms responsible for various cognitive processes including attenuation of aversive memories, a key process in the regulation of affective behaviors. The unique role of BDNF in cognitive and affective behaviors suggests that cognitive deficits due to altered BDNF signaling might underlie affective disorders. Understanding how BDNF modulates synapses in neural circuits relevant to affective behaviors, particularly the medial prefrontal cortical (mPFC)-hippocampus-amygdala pathway, and its interaction with development, sex, and environmental risk factors might shed light on potential therapeutic targets for affective disorders. PMID:23747574

  5. Molecular bases of caloric restriction regulation of neuronal synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Fontán-Lozano, Angela; López-Lluch, Guillermo; Delgado-García, José María; Navas, Placido; Carrión, Angel Manuel

    2008-10-01

    Aging is associated with the decline of cognitive properties. This situation is magnified when neurodegenerative processes associated with aging appear in human patients. Neuronal synaptic plasticity events underlie cognitive properties in the central nervous system. Caloric restriction (CR; either a decrease in food intake or an intermittent fasting diet) can extend life span and increase disease resistance. Recent studies have shown that CR can have profound effects on brain function and vulnerability to injury and disease. Moreover, CR can stimulate the production of new neurons from stem cells (neurogenesis) and can enhance synaptic plasticity, which modulate pain sensation, enhance cognitive function, and may increase the ability of the brain to resist aging. The beneficial effects of CR appear to be the result of a cellular stress response stimulating the production of proteins that enhance neuronal plasticity and resistance to oxidative and metabolic insults; they include neurotrophic factors, neurotransmitter receptors, protein chaperones, and mitochondrial biosynthesis regulators. In this review, we will present and discuss the effect of CR in synaptic processes underlying analgesia and cognitive improvement in healthy, sick, and aging animals. We will also discuss the possible role of mitochondrial biogenesis induced by CR in regulation of neuronal synaptic plasticity.

  6. Leptin regulation of neuronal morphology and hippocampal synaptic function

    PubMed Central

    Harvey, Jenni

    2013-01-01

    The central actions of the hormone leptin in regulating energy homeostasis via the hypothalamus are well documented. However, evidence is growing that this hormone can also modify the structure and function of synapses throughout the CNS. The hippocampus is a region of the forebrain that plays a crucial role in associative learning and memory and is an area also highly vulnerable to neurodegenerative processes. Recent studies indicate that leptin is a potential cognitive enhancer as it modulates the cellular processes underlying hippocampal-dependent learning and memory including dendritic morphology, glutamate receptor trafficking and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. Here, we review the recent evidence implicating the hormone leptin as a key regulator of hippocampal synaptic function and discuss the role of leptin receptor-driven lipid signaling pathways involved in this process. PMID:23964236

  7. Leptin regulation of hippocampal synaptic function in health and disease

    PubMed Central

    Irving, Andrew J.; Harvey, Jenni

    2014-01-01

    The endocrine hormone leptin plays a key role in regulating food intake and body weight via its actions in the hypothalamus. However, leptin receptors are highly expressed in many extra-hypothalamic brain regions and evidence is growing that leptin influences many central processes including cognition. Indeed, recent studies indicate that leptin is a potential cognitive enhancer as it markedly facilitates the cellular events underlying hippocampal-dependent learning and memory, including effects on glutamate receptor trafficking, neuronal morphology and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. However, the ability of leptin to regulate hippocampal synaptic function markedly declines with age and aberrant leptin function has been linked to neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here, we review the evidence supporting a cognitive enhancing role for the hormone leptin and discuss the therapeutic potential of using leptin-based agents to treat AD. PMID:24298156

  8. Triad3A Regulates Synaptic Strength by Ubiquitination of Arc

    PubMed Central

    Mabb, Angela M.; Je, H. Shawn; Wall, Mark J.; Robinson, Camenzind G.; Larsen, Rylan S.; Qiang, Yuan; Corrêa, Sonia A.L.; Ehlers, Michael D.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Activity-dependent gene transcription and protein synthesis underlie many forms of learning-related synaptic plasticity. At excitatory glutamatergic synapses, the immediate early gene product Arc/Arg3.1 couples synaptic activity to postsynaptic endocytosis of AMPA-type glutamate receptors. Although the mechanisms for Arc induction have been described, little is known regarding the molecular machinery that terminates Arc function. Here we demonstrate that the RING domain ubiquitin ligase Triad3A/RNF216 ubiquitinates Arc, resulting in its rapid proteasomal degradation. Triad3A associates with Arc, localizes to clathrin-coated pits, and is associated with endocytic sites in dendrites and spines. In the absence of Triad3A, Arc accumulates, leading to the loss of surface AMPA receptors. Furthermore, loss of Triad3A mimics and occludes Arc-dependent forms of synaptic plasticity. Thus, degradation of Arc by clathrin-localized Triad3A regulates the availability of synaptic AMPA receptors and temporally tunes Arc-mediated plasticity at glutamatergic synapses. PMID:24945773

  9. Moesin helps to restrain synaptic growth at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction.

    PubMed

    Seabrooke, Sara; Stewart, Bryan A

    2008-02-15

    The precise role of actin and actin-binding proteins in synaptic development is unclear. In Drosophila, overexpression of a dominant-negative NSF2 construct perturbs filamentous actin, which is associated with overgrowth of the NMJ, while co-expression of moesin, which encodes an actin binding protein, suppresses this overgrowth phenotype. These data suggest that Moesin may play a role in synaptic development at the Drosophila NMJ. To further investigate this possibility, we examined the influence of loss-of-function moesin alleles on the NSF2-induced overgrowth phenotype. We found that flies carrying P-element insertions that reduce moesin expression enhanced the NMJ overgrowth phenotype, indicating a role for Moesin in normal NMJ morphology. In addition to the NMJ overgrowth phenotype, expression of dominant-negative NSF2 is known to reduce the frequency of miniature excitatory junctional potentials and the amplitude of excitatory junctional potentials. We found that moesin coexpression did not restore the physiology of the mutant NSF2 phenotype. Together, our results demonstrate a role for moesin in regulating synaptic growth in the Drosophila NMJ and suggest that the effect of dominant-negative NSF2 on NMJ morphology and physiology may have different underlying molecular origins.

  10. Circuit reactivation dynamically regulates synaptic plasticity in neocortex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kruskal, Peter B.; Li, Lucy; Maclean, Jason N.

    2013-10-01

    Circuit reactivations involve a stereotyped sequence of neuronal firing and have been behaviourally linked to memory consolidation. Here we use multiphoton imaging and patch-clamp recording, and observe sparse and stereotyped circuit reactivations that correspond to UP states within active neurons. To evaluate the effect of the circuit on synaptic plasticity, we trigger a single spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) pairing once per circuit reactivation. The pairings reliably fall within a particular epoch of the circuit sequence and result in long-term potentiation. During reactivation, the amplitude of plasticity significantly correlates with the preceding 20-25 ms of membrane depolarization rather than the depolarization at the time of pairing. This circuit-dependent plasticity provides a natural constraint on synaptic potentiation, regulating the inherent instability of STDP in an assembly phase-sequence model. Subthreshold voltage during endogenous circuit reactivations provides a critical informative context for plasticity and facilitates the stable consolidation of a spatiotemporal sequence.

  11. Spatiotemporal Regulation of Synaptic Vesicle Fusion Sites in Central Synapses.

    PubMed

    Maschi, Dario; Klyachko, Vitaly A

    2017-04-05

    The number and availability of vesicle release sites at the synaptic active zone (AZ) are critical factors governing neurotransmitter release; yet, these fundamental synaptic parameters have remained undetermined. Moreover, how neural activity regulates the spatiotemporal properties of the release sites within individual central synapses is unknown. Here, we combined a nanoscale imaging approach with advanced image analysis to detect individual vesicle fusion events with ∼27 nm localization precision at single hippocampal synapses under physiological conditions. Our results revealed the presence of multiple distinct release sites within individual hippocampal synapses. Release sites were distributed throughout the AZ and underwent repeated reuse. Furthermore, the spatiotemporal properties of the release sites were activity dependent with a reduction in reuse frequency and a shift in location toward the AZ periphery during high-frequency stimulation. These findings have revealed fundamental spatiotemporal properties of individual release sites in small central synapses and their activity-dependent modulation.

  12. Shank Modulates Postsynaptic Wnt Signaling to Regulate Synaptic Development

    PubMed Central

    Akbergenova, Yulia; Cho, Richard W.; Baas-Thomas, Maximilien S.; Littleton, J. Troy

    2016-01-01

    Prosap/Shank scaffolding proteins regulate the formation, organization, and plasticity of excitatory synapses. Mutations in SHANK family genes are implicated in autism spectrum disorder and other neuropsychiatric conditions. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying Shank function are not fully understood, and no study to date has examined the consequences of complete loss of all Shank proteins in vivo. Here we characterize the single Drosophila Prosap/Shank family homolog. Shank is enriched at the postsynaptic membrane of glutamatergic neuromuscular junctions and controls multiple parameters of synapse biology in a dose-dependent manner. Both loss and overexpression of Shank result in defects in synaptic bouton number and maturation. We find that Shank regulates a noncanonical Wnt signaling pathway in the postsynaptic cell by modulating the internalization of the Wnt receptor Fz2. This study identifies Shank as a key component of synaptic Wnt signaling, defining a novel mechanism for how Shank contributes to synapse maturation during neuronal development. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Haploinsufficiency for SHANK3 is one of the most prevalent monogenic causes of autism spectrum disorder, making it imperative to understand how the Shank family regulates neurodevelopment and synapse function. We created the first animal model lacking all Shank proteins and used the Drosophila neuromuscular junction, a model glutamatergic synapse, to characterize the role of Shank at synapses. We identified a novel function of Shank in synapse maturation via regulation of Wnt signaling in the postsynaptic cell. PMID:27225771

  13. AKAP signaling complexes in regulation of excitatory synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Sanderson, Jennifer L; Dell'Acqua, Mark L

    2011-06-01

    Plasticity at excitatory glutamatergic synapses in the central nervous system is believed to be critical for neuronal circuits to process and encode information, allowing animals to perform complex behaviors such as learning and memory. In addition, alterations in synaptic plasticity are associated with human diseases, including Alzheimer disease, epilepsy, chronic pain, drug addiction, and schizophrenia. Long-term potentiation (LTP) and depression (LTD) in the hippocampal region of the brain are two forms of synaptic plasticity that increase or decrease, respectively, the strength of synaptic transmission by postsynaptic AMPA-type glutamate receptors. Both LTP and LTD are induced by activation of NMDA-type glutamate receptors but differ in the level and duration of Ca(2+) influx through the NMDA receptor and the subsequent engagement of downstream signaling by protein kinases, including PKA, PKC, and CaMKII, and phosphatases, including PP1 and calcineurin-PP2B (CaN). This review addresses the important emerging roles of the A-kinase anchoring protein family of scaffold proteins in regulating localization of PKA and other kinases and phosphatases to postsynaptic multiprotein complexes that control NMDA and AMPA receptor function during LTP and LTD.

  14. AKAP Signaling Complexes in Regulation of Excitatory Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Sanderson, Jennifer L.; Dell'Acqua, Mark L.

    2011-01-01

    Plasticity at excitatory glutamatergic synapses in the central nervous system is believed to be critical for neuronal circuits to process and encode information allowing animals to perform complex behaviors such as learning and memory. In addition, alterations in synaptic plasticity are associated with human diseases including Alzheimer's, epilepsy, chronic pain, drug addiction, and schizophrenia. Long-term potentiation (LTP) and depression (LTD) in the hippocampal region of the brain are two forms of synaptic plasticity that increase or decrease, respectively, the strength of synaptic transmission by postsynaptic AMPA-type glutamate receptors. Both LTP and LTD are induced by activation of NMDA-type glutamate receptors but differ in the level and duration of Ca2+ influx through the NMDA receptor and the subsequent engagement of downstream signaling by protein kinases including PKA, PKC, and CaMKII and phosphatases including PP1 and calcineurin-PP2B (CaN). This review addresses the important emerging roles of the A-kinase anchoring protein (AKAP) family of scaffold proteins in regulating localization of PKA and other kinases and phosphatases to postsynaptic multi-protein complexes that control NMDA and AMPA receptor function during LTP and LTD. PMID:21498812

  15. Evolution of the Aging Brain Transcriptome and Synaptic Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Dakin, Kelly A.; Vann, James M.; Isaacs, Adrian; Geula, Chengiz; Wang, Jianbin; Pan, Ying; Gabuzda, Dana H.; Li, Cheng; Prolla, Tomas A.; Yankner, Bruce A.

    2008-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegenerative disorders of aging are characterized by clinical and pathological features that are relatively specific to humans. To obtain greater insight into how brain aging has evolved, we compared age-related gene expression changes in the cortex of humans, rhesus macaques, and mice on a genome-wide scale. A small subset of gene expression changes are conserved in all three species, including robust age-dependent upregulation of the neuroprotective gene apolipoprotein D (APOD) and downregulation of the synaptic cAMP signaling gene calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase IV (CAMK4). However, analysis of gene ontology and cell type localization shows that humans and rhesus macaques have diverged from mice due to a dramatic increase in age-dependent repression of neuronal genes. Many of these age-regulated neuronal genes are associated with synaptic function. Notably, genes associated with GABA-ergic inhibitory function are robustly age-downregulated in humans but not in mice at the level of both mRNA and protein. Gene downregulation was not associated with overall neuronal or synaptic loss. Thus, repression of neuronal gene expression is a prominent and recently evolved feature of brain aging in humans and rhesus macaques that may alter neural networks and contribute to age-related cognitive changes. PMID:18830410

  16. LKB1 and AMPK regulate synaptic remodeling in old age

    PubMed Central

    Samuel, Melanie A; Voinescu, P Emanuela; Lilley, Brendan N; de Cabo, Rafa; Foretz, Marc; Viollet, Benoit; Pawlyk, Basil; Sandberg, Michael A; Vavvas, Demetrios G; Sanes, Joshua R

    2015-01-01

    Age-related decreases in neural function result in part from alterations in synapses. To identify molecular defects that lead to such changes, we focused on the outer retina, in which synapses are markedly altered in old rodents and humans. We found that the serine/threonine kinase LKB1 and one of its substrates, AMPK, regulate this process. In old mice, synaptic remodeling was accompanied by specific decreases in the levels of total LKB1 and active (phosphorylated) AMPK. In the absence of either kinase, young adult mice developed retinal defects similar to those that occurred in old wild-type animals. LKB1 and AMPK function in rod photoreceptors where their loss leads to aberrant axonal retraction, the extension of postsynaptic dendrites and the formation of ectopic synapses. Conversely, increasing AMPK activity genetically or pharmacologically attenuates and may reverse age-related synaptic alterations. Together, these results identify molecular determinants of age-related synaptic remodeling and suggest strategies for attenuating these changes. PMID:25086610

  17. NFAT regulates pre-synaptic development and activity-dependent plasticity in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Freeman, Amanda; Franciscovich, Amy; Bowers, Mallory; Sandstrom, David J.; Sanyal, Subhabrata

    2010-01-01

    The calcium-regulated transcription factor NFAT is emerging as a key regulator of neuronal development and plasticity but precise cellular consequences of NFAT function remain poorly understood. Here, we report that the single Drosophila NFAT homolog is widely expressed in the nervous system including motor neurons and unexpectedly controls neural excitability. Likely due to this effect on excitability, NFAT regulates overall larval locomotion and both chronic and acute forms of activity-dependent plasticity at the larval glutamatergic neuro-muscular synapse. Specifically, NFAT-dependent synaptic phenotypes include changes in the number of pre-synaptic boutons, stable modifications in synaptic microtubule architecture and pre-synaptic transmitter release, while no evidence is found for synaptic retraction or alterations in the level of the synaptic cell adhesion molecule FasII. We propose that NFAT regulates pre-synaptic development and constraints long-term plasticity by dampening neuronal excitability. PMID:21185939

  18. Effects of Myoga on Memory and Synaptic Plasticity by Regulating Nerve Growth Factor-Mediated Signaling.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyo Geun; Lim, Soonmin; Hong, Jongki; Kim, Ae-Jung; Oh, Myung Sook

    2016-02-01

    The flower bud of Zingiber mioga Roscoe, known as 'myoga' or Japanese ginger, has a pungent aroma and is commonly consumed as a spice, with pickles, or as a health supplement in Eastern Asia. Here, we evaluated the activity of myoga in the brain, focusing especially on nerve growth factor (NGF), which is believed to mediate synaptic plasticity, supporting learning and memory. In a rat primary hippocampal astrocyte culture system, treatment with myoga extract for 24 h significantly stimulated the production of NGF. In mice administered myoga extract for 14 days, 200 and 400 mg/kg/day treatment resulted in increased NGF levels in the hippocampus. Myoga extract treatment also regulated the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases and cAMP response element-binding protein in the mouse hippocampus, leading to increased synaptic plasticity. In addition, it significantly increased novel object recognition time and spontaneous alternation, indicating improvement in learning and memory. These results suggest that myoga helps regulate NGF and synaptic plasticity, increasing memory ability.

  19. Synucleins regulate the kinetics of synaptic vesicle endocytosis.

    PubMed

    Vargas, Karina J; Makani, Sachin; Davis, Taylor; Westphal, Christopher H; Castillo, Pablo E; Chandra, Sreeganga S

    2014-07-09

    Genetic and pathological studies link α-synuclein to the etiology of Parkinson's disease (PD), but the normal function of this presynaptic protein remains unknown. α-Synuclein, an acidic lipid binding protein, shares high sequence identity with β- and γ-synuclein. Previous studies have implicated synucleins in synaptic vesicle (SV) trafficking, although the precise site of synuclein action continues to be unclear. Here we show, using optical imaging, electron microscopy, and slice electrophysiology, that synucleins are required for the fast kinetics of SV endocytosis. Slowed endocytosis observed in synuclein null cultures can be rescued by individually expressing mouse α-, β-, or γ-synuclein, indicating they are functionally redundant. Through comparisons to dynamin knock-out synapses and biochemical experiments, we suggest that synucleins act at early steps of SV endocytosis. Our results categorize α-synuclein with other familial PD genes known to regulate SV endocytosis, implicating this pathway in PD.

  20. FoxO6 regulates memory consolidation and synaptic function

    PubMed Central

    Salih, Dervis A.M.; Rashid, Asim J.; Colas, Damien; de la Torre-Ubieta, Luis; Zhu, Ruo P.; Morgan, Alexander A.; Santo, Evan E.; Ucar, Duygu; Devarajan, Keerthana; Cole, Christina J.; Madison, Daniel V.; Shamloo, Mehrdad; Butte, Atul J.; Bonni, Azad; Josselyn, Sheena A.; Brunet, Anne

    2012-01-01

    The FoxO family of transcription factors is known to slow aging downstream from the insulin/IGF (insulin-like growth factor) signaling pathway. The most recently discovered FoxO isoform in mammals, FoxO6, is highly enriched in the adult hippocampus. However, the importance of FoxO factors in cognition is largely unknown. Here we generated mice lacking FoxO6 and found that these mice display normal learning but impaired memory consolidation in contextual fear conditioning and novel object recognition. Using stereotactic injection of viruses into the hippocampus of adult wild-type mice, we found that FoxO6 activity in the adult hippocampus is required for memory consolidation. Genome-wide approaches revealed that FoxO6 regulates a program of genes involved in synaptic function upon learning in the hippocampus. Consistently, FoxO6 deficiency results in decreased dendritic spine density in hippocampal neurons in vitro and in vivo. Thus, FoxO6 may promote memory consolidation by regulating a program coordinating neuronal connectivity in the hippocampus, which could have important implications for physiological and pathological age-dependent decline in memory. PMID:23222102

  1. LRRK2 regulates retrograde synaptic compensation at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction

    PubMed Central

    Penney, Jay; Tsurudome, Kazuya; Liao, Edward H.; Kauwe, Grant; Gray, Lindsay; Yanagiya, Akiko; R. Calderon, Mario; Sonenberg, Nahum; Haghighi, A. Pejmun

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson's disease gene leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) has been implicated in a number of processes including the regulation of mitochondrial function, autophagy and endocytic dynamics; nevertheless, we know little about its potential role in the regulation of synaptic plasticity. Here we demonstrate that postsynaptic knockdown of the fly homologue of LRRK2 thwarts retrograde, homeostatic synaptic compensation at the larval neuromuscular junction. Conversely, postsynaptic overexpression of either the fly or human LRRK2 transgene induces a retrograde enhancement of presynaptic neurotransmitter release by increasing the size of the release ready pool of vesicles. We show that LRRK2 promotes cap-dependent translation and identify Furin 1 as its translational target, which is required for the synaptic function of LRRK2. As the regulation of synaptic homeostasis plays a fundamental role in ensuring normal and stable synaptic function, our findings suggest that aberrant function of LRRK2 may lead to destabilization of neural circuits. PMID:27432119

  2. Structurally dissimilar antimanic agents modulate synaptic plasticity by regulating AMPA glutamate receptor subunit GluR1 synaptic expression.

    PubMed

    Du, Jing; Gray, Neil A; Falke, Cynthia; Yuan, Peixiong; Szabo, Steven; Manji, Husseini K

    2003-11-01

    A growing body of data from clinical and preclinical studies suggests that the glutamatergic system may represent a novel therapeutic target for severe recurrent mood disorders. Since synapse-specific glutamate receptor expression/localization is known to play critical roles in synaptic plasticity, we investigated the effects of mood stabilizers on AMPA receptor expression. Rats were treated chronically with lithium or valproate, hippocampal synaptosomes were isolated, and GluR1 levels were determined. Additionally, hippocampal neurons were prepared from E18 rat embryos and treated with lithium or valproate. Surface expression of GluR1 was determined using a biotinylation assay, and double-immunostaining with anti-GluR1 and anti-synaptotagmin antibodies was used to determine synaptic GluR1 levels. The AMPA receptor subunit GluR1 expression in hippocampal synaptosomes was significantly reduced by both chronic lithium and valproate. Overall, these studies show that AMPA receptor subunit GluR1 is a common target for two structurally highly dissimilar, but highly efficacious, mood stabilizers, lithium and valproate. These studies suggest that regulation of glutamatergically mediated synaptic plasticity may play a role in the treatment of mood disorders, and raise the possibility that agents more directly affecting synaptic GluR1 may represent novel therapies for this devastating illness.

  3. Regulators of synaptic transmission: roles in the pathogenesis and treatment of epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Casillas-Espinosa, Pablo M; Powell, Kim L; O'Brien, Terence J

    2012-12-01

    Synaptic transmission is the communication between a presynaptic and a postsynaptic neuron, and the subsequent processing of the signal. These processes are complex and highly regulated, reflecting their importance in normal brain functioning and homeostasis. Sustaining synaptic transmission depends on the continuing cycle of synaptic vesicle formation, release, and endocytosis, which requires proteins such as dynamin, syndapin, synapsin, and synaptic vesicle protein 2A. Synaptic transmission is regulated by diverse mechanisms, including presynaptic modulators of synaptic vesicle formation and release, postsynaptic receptors and signaling, and modulators of neurotransmission. Neurotransmitters released presynaptically can bind to their postsynaptic receptors, the inhibitory γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic receptors or the excitatory glutamate receptors. Once released, glutamate activates a variety of postsynaptic receptors including α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA), N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA), kainate, and metabotropic receptors. The activation of the receptors triggers downstream signaling cascades generating a vast array of effects, which can be modulated by a numerous auxiliary regulatory subunits. Moreover, different neuropeptides such as neuropeptide Y, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), somatostatin, ghrelin, and galanin, act as regulators of diverse synaptic functions and along with the classic neurotransmitters. Abnormalities in the regulation of synaptic transmission play a critical role in the pathogenesis of numerous brain diseases, including epilepsy. This review focuses on the different mechanisms involved in the regulation of synaptic transmission, which may play a role in the pathogenesis of epilepsy: the presynaptic modulators of synaptic vesicle formation and release, postsynaptic receptors, and modulators of neurotransmission, including the mechanism by which drugs can modulate the frequency and severity of

  4. Synaptic Activity Regulates the Abundance and Binding of Complexin

    PubMed Central

    Wragg, Rachel T.; Gouzer, Géraldine; Bai, Jihong; Arianna, Gianluca; Ryan, Timothy A.; Dittman, Jeremy S.

    2015-01-01

    Nervous system function relies on precise chemical communication between neurons at specialized junctions known as synapses. Complexin (CPX) is one of a small number of cytoplasmic proteins that are indispensable in controlling neurotransmitter release through SNARE and synaptic vesicle interactions. However, the mechanisms that recruit and stabilize CPX are poorly understood. The mobility of CPX tagged with photoactivatable green fluorescent protein (pGFP) was quantified in vivo using Caenorhabditis elegans. Although pGFP escaped the synapse within seconds, CPX-pGFP displayed both fast and slow decay components, requiring minutes for complete exchange of the synaptic pool. The longer synaptic residence time of CPX arose from both synaptic vesicle and SNARE interactions, and surprisingly, CPX mobility depended on synaptic activity. Moreover, mouse CPX-GFP reversibly dispersed out of hippocampal presynaptic terminals during stimulation, and blockade of vesicle fusion prevented CPX dispersion. Hence, synaptic CPX can rapidly redistribute and this exchange is influenced by neuronal activity, potentially contributing to use-dependent plasticity. PMID:25809246

  5. ATP from synaptic terminals and astrocytes regulates NMDA receptors and synaptic plasticity through PSD-95 multi-protein complex

    PubMed Central

    Lalo, U.; Palygin, O.; Verkhratsky, A.; Grant, S. G. N.; Pankratov, Y.

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies highlighted the importance of astrocyte-secreted molecules, such as ATP, for the slow modulation of synaptic transmission in central neurones. Biophysical mechanisms underlying the impact of gliotransmitters on the strength of individual synapse remain, however, unclear. Here we show that purinergic P2X receptors can bring significant contribution to the signalling in the individual synaptic boutons. ATP released from astrocytes facilitates a recruitment of P2X receptors into excitatory synapses by Ca2+-dependent mechanism. P2X receptors, co-localized with NMDA receptors in the excitatory synapses, can be activated by ATP co-released with glutamate from pre-synaptic terminals and by glia-derived ATP. An activation of P2X receptors in turn leads to down-regulation of postsynaptic NMDA receptors via Ca2+-dependent de-phosphorylation and interaction with PSD-95 multi-protein complex. Genetic deletion of the PSD-95 or P2X4 receptors obliterated ATP-mediated down-regulation of NMDA receptors. Impairment of purinergic modulation of NMDA receptors in the PSD-95 mutants dramatically decreased the threshold of LTP induction and increased the net magnitude of LTP. Our findings show that synergistic action of glia- and neurone-derived ATP can pre-modulate efficacy of excitatory synapses and thereby can have an important role in the glia-neuron communications and brain meta-plasticity. PMID:27640997

  6. p53 prevents neurodegeneration by regulating synaptic genes.

    PubMed

    Merlo, Paola; Frost, Bess; Peng, Shouyong; Yang, Yawei J; Park, Peter J; Feany, Mel

    2014-12-16

    DNA damage has been implicated in neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer's disease and other tauopathies, but the consequences of genotoxic stress to postmitotic neurons are poorly understood. Here we demonstrate that p53, a key mediator of the DNA damage response, plays a neuroprotective role in a Drosophila model of tauopathy. Further, through a whole-genome ChIP-chip analysis, we identify genes controlled by p53 in postmitotic neurons. We genetically validate a specific pathway, synaptic function, in p53-mediated neuroprotection. We then demonstrate that the control of synaptic genes by p53 is conserved in mammals. Collectively, our results implicate synaptic function as a central target in p53-dependent protection from neurodegeneration.

  7. Dendritic Spines as Tunable Regulators of Synaptic Signals

    PubMed Central

    Tønnesen, Jan; Nägerl, U. Valentin

    2016-01-01

    Neurons are perpetually receiving vast amounts of information in the form of synaptic input from surrounding cells. The majority of input occurs at thousands of dendritic spines, which mediate excitatory synaptic transmission in the brain, and is integrated by the dendritic and somatic compartments of the postsynaptic neuron. The functional role of dendritic spines in shaping biochemical and electrical signals transmitted via synapses has long been intensely studied. Yet, many basic questions remain unanswered, in particular regarding the impact of their nanoscale morphology on electrical signals. Here, we review our current understanding of the structure and function relationship of dendritic spines, focusing on the controversy of electrical compartmentalization and the potential role of spine structural changes in synaptic plasticity. PMID:27340393

  8. Regulation of synaptic signalling by postsynaptic, non-glutamate receptor ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Bloodgood, Brenda L; Sabatini, Bernardo L

    2008-01-01

    Activation of glutamatergic synapses onto pyramidal neurons produces a synaptic depolarization as well as a buildup of intracellular calcium (Ca2+). The synaptic depolarization propagates through the dendritic arbor and can be detected at the soma with a recording electrode. Current influx through AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs) provides the depolarizing drive, and the amplitudes of synaptic potentials are generally thought to reflect the number and properties of these receptors at each synapse. In contrast, synaptically evoked Ca2+ transients are limited to the spine containing the active synapse and result primarily from Ca2+ influx through NMDA-type glutamate receptors (NMDARs). Here we review recent studies that reveal that both synaptic depolarizations and spine head Ca2+ transients are strongly regulated by the activity of postsynaptic, non-glutamate receptor ion channels. In hippocampal pyramidal neurons, voltage- and Ca2+-gated ion channels located in dendritic spines open as downstream consequences of glutamate receptor activation and act within a complex signalling loop that feeds back to regulate synaptic signals. Dynamic regulation of these ion channels offers a powerful mechanism of synaptic plasticity that is independent of direct modulation of glutamate receptors. PMID:18096597

  9. The Neurexin/N-Ethylmaleimide-sensitive Factor (NSF) Interaction Regulates Short Term Synaptic Depression*♦

    PubMed Central

    Li, Tao; Tian, Yao; Li, Qian; Chen, Huiying; Lv, Huihui; Xie, Wei; Han, Junhai

    2015-01-01

    Although Neurexins, which are cell adhesion molecules localized predominantly to the presynaptic terminals, are known to regulate synapse formation and synaptic transmission, their roles in the regulation of synaptic vesicle release during repetitive nerve stimulation are unknown. Here, we show that nrx mutant synapses exhibit rapid short term synaptic depression upon tetanic nerve stimulation. Moreover, we demonstrate that the intracellular region of NRX is essential for synaptic vesicle release upon tetanic nerve stimulation. Using a yeast two-hybrid screen, we find that the intracellular region of NRX interacts with N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor (NSF), an enzyme that mediates soluble NSF attachment protein receptor (SNARE) complex disassembly and plays an important role in synaptic vesicle release. We further map the binding sites of each molecule and demonstrate that the NRX/NSF interaction is critical for both the distribution of NSF at the presynaptic terminals and SNARE complex disassembly. Our results reveal a previously unknown role of NRX in the regulation of short term synaptic depression upon tetanic nerve stimulation and provide new mechanistic insights into the role of NRX in synaptic vesicle release. PMID:25953899

  10. S-nitrosylation-dependent proteasomal degradation restrains Cdk5 activity to regulate hippocampal synaptic strength

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Peng; Fu, Wing-Yu; Fu, Amy K. Y.; Ip, Nancy Y.

    2015-01-01

    Precise regulation of synaptic strength requires coordinated activity and functions of synaptic proteins, which is controlled by a variety of post-translational modification. Here we report that S-nitrosylation of p35, the activator of cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5), by nitric oxide (NO) is important for the regulation of excitatory synaptic strength. While blockade of NO signalling results in structural and functional synaptic deficits as indicated by reduced mature dendritic spine density and surface expression of glutamate receptor subunits, phosphorylation of numerous synaptic substrates of Cdk5 and its activity are aberrantly upregulated following reduced NO production. The results show that the NO-induced reduction in Cdk5 activity is mediated by S-nitrosylation of p35, resulting in its ubiquitination and degradation by the E3 ligase PJA2. Silencing p35 protein in hippocampal neurons partially rescues the NO blockade-induced synaptic deficits. These findings collectively demonstrate that p35 S-nitrosylation by NO signalling is critical for regulating hippocampal synaptic strength. PMID:26503494

  11. Homeostatic regulation of AMPA receptor trafficking and degradation by light-controlled single synaptic activation

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Qingming; Gilbert, James; Man, Heng-Ye

    2011-01-01

    During homeostatic adjustment in response to alterations in neuronal activity, synaptic expression of AMPA receptors (AMPARs) is globally tuned up- or down so that the neuronal activity is restored to a physiological range. Given that a central neuron receives multiple presynaptic inputs, whether and how AMPAR synaptic expression is homeostatically regulated at individual synapses remains unclear. In cultured hippocampal neurons, we report that when activity of an individual presynaptic terminal is selectively elevated by light-controlled excitation, AMPAR abundance at the excited synapses is selectively down-regulated in an NMDAR-dependent manner. The reduction in surface AMPARs is accompanied by enhanced receptor endocytosis and dependent on proteasomal activity. Synaptic activation also leads to a site-specific increase in the ubiquitin ligase Nedd4 and polyubiquitination levels, consistent with AMPAR ubiquitination and degradation in the spine. These results indicate that AMPAR accumulation at individual synapses is subject to autonomous homeostatic regulation in response to synaptic activity. PMID:22153376

  12. Caenorhabditis elegans Intersectin: A Synaptic Protein Regulating Neurotransmission

    PubMed Central

    Rose, Simon; Malabarba, Maria Grazia; Krag, Claudia; Schultz, Anna; Tsushima, Hanako; Di Fiore, Pier Paolo

    2007-01-01

    Intersectin is a multifunctional protein that interacts with components of the endocytic and exocytic pathways, and it is also involved in the control of actin dynamics. Drosophila intersectin is required for viability, synaptic development, and synaptic vesicle recycling. Here, we report the characterization of intersectin function in Caenorhabditis elegans. Nematode intersectin (ITSN-1) is expressed in the nervous system, and it is enriched in presynaptic regions. The C. elegans intersectin gene (itsn-1) is nonessential for viability. In addition, itsn-1-null worms do not display any evident phenotype, under physiological conditions. However, they display aldicarb-hypersensitivity, compatible with a negative regulatory role of ITSN-1 on neurotransmission. ITSN-1 physically interacts with dynamin and EHS-1, two proteins involved in synaptic vesicle recycling. We have previously shown that EHS-1 is a positive modulator of synaptic vesicle recycling in the nematode, likely through modulation of dynamin or dynamin-controlled pathways. Here, we show that ITSN-1 and EHS-1 have opposite effects on aldicarb sensitivity, and on dynamin-dependent phenotypes. Thus, the sum of our results identifies dynamin, or a dynamin-controlled pathway, as a potential target for the negative regulatory role of ITSN-1. PMID:17942601

  13. Progesterone Regulation of Synaptic Transmission and Plasticity in Rodent Hippocampus

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foy, Michael R.; Akopian, Garnik; Thompson, Richard F.

    2008-01-01

    Ovarian hormones influence memory formation by eliciting changes in neural activity. The effects of various concentrations of progesterone (P4) on synaptic transmission and plasticity associated with long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) were studied using in vitro hippocampal slices. Extracellular studies show that the…

  14. Dopamine-dependent corticostriatal synaptic filtering regulates sensorimotor behavior

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Minerva Y.; Borgkvist, Anders; Choi, Se Joon; Mosharov, Eugene V.; Bamford, Nigel S.; Sulzer, David

    2015-01-01

    Summary Modulation of corticostriatal synaptic activity by dopamine is required for normal sensorimotor behaviors. After loss of nigrostriatal dopamine axons in Parkinson's disease, l-DOPA and dopamine D2-like receptor agonists are used as replacement therapy, although these drugs also trigger sensitized sensorimotor responses including dyskinesias and impulse control disorders. In mice, we lesioned dopamine projections to left dorsal striatum and assayed unilateral sensorimotor deficits with the corridor test as well as presynaptic corticostriatal activity with the synaptic vesicle probe, FM1-43. Sham-lesioned mice acquired food equivalently on both sides, while D2 receptor activation filtered the less active corticostriatal terminals, a response that required coincident co-activation of mGlu-R5 metabotropic glutamate and CB1 endocannabinoid receptors. Lesioned mice did not acquire food from their right, but overused that side following treatment with l-DOPA. Synaptic filtering on the lesioned side was abolished by either l-DOPA or a D2 receptor agonist, but when combined with a CB1 receptor antagonist, l-DOPA or D2 agonists normalized both synaptic filtering and behavior. Thus, high-pass filtering of corticostriatal synapses by the coordinated activation of D2, mGlu-R5, and CB1 receptors is required for normal sensorimotor response to environmental cues. PMID:25637802

  15. Light-evoked synaptic activity of retinal ganglion and amacrine cells is regulated in developing mouse retina

    PubMed Central

    He, Quanhua; Wang, Ping; Tian, Ning

    2010-01-01

    Recent studies have shown a continued maturation of visual responsiveness and synaptic activity of retina after eye opening, including the size of receptive fields of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), light-evoked synaptic output of RGCs, bipolar cell spontaneous synaptic inputs to RGCs, and the synaptic connections between RGCs and ON and OFF bipolar cells. Light deprivation retarded some of these age-dependent changes. However, many other functional and morphological features of RGCs are not sensitive to visual experience. To determine whether light-evoked synaptic responses of RGCs undergo developmental change, we directly examined the light-evoked synaptic inputs from ON and OFF synaptic pathways to RGCs in developing retinas and found that both light-evoked excitatory and inhibitory synaptic currents decreased, but not increased, with age. We also examined the light-evoked synaptic inputs from ON and OFF synaptic pathways to amacrine cells in developing retinas and found that the light-evoked synaptic input of amacrine cells is also down-regulated in developing mouse retina. Different from the developmental changes of RGC spontaneous synaptic activity, dark rearing has little effect on the developmental changes of light-evoked synaptic activity of both RGCs and amacrine cells. Therefore, we concluded that the synaptic mechanisms mediating spontaneous and light-evoked synaptic activity of RGCs and amacrine cells are likely to be different. PMID:21091802

  16. Phosphorylation of Complexin by PKA Regulates Activity-dependent Spontaneous Neurotransmitter Release and Structural Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Richard W.; Buhl, Lauren K.; Volfson, Dina; Tran, Adrienne; Li, Feng; Akbergenova, Yulia; Littleton, J. Troy

    2016-01-01

    Summary Synaptic plasticity is a fundamental feature of the nervous system that allows adaptation to changing behavioral environments. Most studies of synaptic plasticity have examined the regulated trafficking of postsynaptic glutamate receptors that generates alterations in synaptic transmission. Whether and how changes in the presynaptic release machinery contribute to neuronal plasticity is less clear. The SNARE complex mediates neurotransmitter release in response to presynaptic Ca++ entry. Here we show that the SNARE fusion clamp Complexin undergoes activity-dependent phosphorylation that alters the basic properties of neurotransmission in Drosophila. Retrograde signaling following stimulation activates PKA-dependent phosphorylation of the Complexin C-terminus that selectively and transiently enhances spontaneous release. Enhanced spontaneous release is required for activity-dependent synaptic growth. These data indicate that SNARE-dependent fusion mechanisms can be regulated in an activity-dependent manner and highlight the key role of spontaneous neurotransmitter release as a mediator of functional and structural plasticity. PMID:26590346

  17. [COX-2 regulation of prostaglandins in synaptic signaling].

    PubMed

    Yang, Hong-Wei

    2009-10-01

    Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is a rate-limiting enzyme converting arachidonic acid to prostaglandins (PGs), which is a key messenger in traumatic brain injury- and ischemia-induced neuronal damage and in neuroinflammation. COX-2 is implicated in the pathogeneses of neurodegenerative diseases. Growing evidence implies that the contribution of COX-2 to neuropathology is associated with its involvement in synaptic alteration. Elevation or inhibition of COX-2 has been shown to enhance or suppress excitatory glutamatergic neurotransmission and long-term potentiation (LTP). These events are mainly mediated via PGE2, the predominant reaction product of COX-2, and the PGE2 subtype 2 receptor (EP2). Thus, elucidation of COX-2 in synaptic signaling may provide a mechanistic basis for designing new drugs aimed at preventing, treating or alleviating neuroinflammation-associated neurological disorders.

  18. Regulation of information passing by synaptic transmission: a short review.

    PubMed

    Di Maio, Vito

    2008-08-15

    The largest part of information passed among neurons in the brain occurs by the means of chemical synapses connecting the axons of presynaptic neurons to the dendritic tree of the postsynaptic ones. In the present paper, the most relevant open problems related to the mechanisms of control of the information passing among neurons by synaptic transmission will be shortly reviewed. The "cross talking" between synapses, their mutual interactions and the control of the information flow between different areas of the dendritic tree will be also considered. The threshold mechanism based on the "reversal potential" will be considered for its role in the control of information transfer among neurons and also for its contribution to the information flow among different areas of the dendritic tree and to the computational ability of the single neuron. The concept of "competition for plasticity" will be proposed as a mechanism of competition based on the synaptic activation time.

  19. Cholinergic synaptic vesicle heterogeneity: evidence for regulation of acetylcholine transport

    SciTech Connect

    Gracz, L.M.; Wang, W.; Parsons, S.M.

    1988-07-12

    Crude cholinergic synaptic vesicles from a homogenate of the electric organ of Torpedo californica were centrifuged to equilibrium in an isosmotic sucrose density gradient. The classical VP/sub 1/ synaptic vesicles banding at 1.055 g/mL actively transported (/sup 3/H)acetylcholine (AcCh). An organelle banding at about 1.071 g/mL transported even more (/sup 3/H)AcCh. Transport by both organelles was inhibited by the known AcCh storage blockers trans-2-(4-phenylpiperidino)cyclohexanol (vesamicol, formerly AH5183) and nigericin. Relative to VP/sub 1/ vesicles the denser organelle was slightly smaller as shown by size-exclusion chromatography. It is concluded that the denser organelle corresponds to the recycling VP/sub 2/ synaptic vesicle originally described in intact Torpedo marmorata electric organ. The properties of the receptor for vesamicol were studied by measuring binding of (/sup 3/H)vesamicol, and the amount of SV2 antigen characteristic of secretory vesicles was assayed with a monoclonal antibody directed against it. Relative to VP/sub 1/ vesicles the VP/sub 2/ vesicles had a ratio of (/sup 3/H)AcCh transport activity to vesamicol receptor concentration that typically was 4-7-fold higher, whereas the ratio of SV2 antigen concentration to vesamicol receptor concentration was about 2-fold higher. The Hill coefficients ..cap alpha../sub H/ and equilibrium dissociation constants K for vesamicol binding to VP/sub 1/ and VP/sub 2/ vesicles were essentially the same. The positive Hill coefficient suggests that the vesamicol receptor exists as a homotropic oligomeric complex. The results demonstrate that VP/sub 1/ and VP/sub 2/ synaptic vesicles exhibit functional differences in the AcCh transport system, presumably as a result of regulatory phenomena.

  20. Near-Perfect Synaptic Integration by Nav1.7 in Hypothalamic Neurons Regulates Body Weight.

    PubMed

    Branco, Tiago; Tozer, Adam; Magnus, Christopher J; Sugino, Ken; Tanaka, Shinsuke; Lee, Albert K; Wood, John N; Sternson, Scott M

    2016-06-16

    Neurons are well suited for computations on millisecond timescales, but some neuronal circuits set behavioral states over long time periods, such as those involved in energy homeostasis. We found that multiple types of hypothalamic neurons, including those that oppositely regulate body weight, are specialized as near-perfect synaptic integrators that summate inputs over extended timescales. Excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) are greatly prolonged, outlasting the neuronal membrane time-constant up to 10-fold. This is due to the voltage-gated sodium channel Nav1.7 (Scn9a), previously associated with pain-sensation but not synaptic integration. Scn9a deletion in AGRP, POMC, or paraventricular hypothalamic neurons reduced EPSP duration, synaptic integration, and altered body weight in mice. In vivo whole-cell recordings in the hypothalamus confirmed near-perfect synaptic integration. These experiments show that integration of synaptic inputs over time by Nav1.7 is critical for body weight regulation and reveal a mechanism for synaptic control of circuits regulating long term homeostatic functions.

  1. Ubiquitin ligase TRIM3 controls hippocampal plasticity and learning by regulating synaptic γ-actin levels

    PubMed Central

    Schreiber, Joerg; Végh, Marlene J.; Dawitz, Julia; Kroon, Tim; Loos, Maarten; Labonté, Dorthe; Li, Ka Wan; Van Nierop, Pim; Van Diepen, Michiel T.; De Zeeuw, Chris I.; Kneussel, Matthias; Meredith, Rhiannon M.; Smit, August B.

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity requires remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton. Although two actin isoforms, β- and γ-actin, are expressed in dendritic spines, the specific contribution of γ-actin in the expression of synaptic plasticity is unknown. We show that synaptic γ-actin levels are regulated by the E3 ubiquitin ligase TRIM3. TRIM3 protein and Actg1 transcript are colocalized in messenger ribonucleoprotein granules responsible for the dendritic targeting of messenger RNAs. TRIM3 polyubiquitylates γ-actin, most likely cotranslationally at synaptic sites. Trim3−/− mice consequently have increased levels of γ-actin at hippocampal synapses, resulting in higher spine densities, increased long-term potentiation, and enhanced short-term contextual fear memory consolidation. Interestingly, hippocampal deletion of Actg1 caused an increase in long-term fear memory. Collectively, our findings suggest that temporal control of γ-actin levels by TRIM3 is required to regulate the timing of hippocampal plasticity. We propose a model in which TRIM3 regulates synaptic γ-actin turnover and actin filament stability and thus forms a transient inhibitory constraint on the expression of hippocampal synaptic plasticity. PMID:26527743

  2. The cell-autonomous role of excitatory synaptic transmission in the regulation of neuronal structure and function.

    PubMed

    Lu, Wei; Bushong, Eric A; Shih, Tiffany P; Ellisman, Mark H; Nicoll, Roger A

    2013-05-08

    The cell-autonomous role of synaptic transmission in the regulation of neuronal structural and electrical properties is unclear. We have now employed a genetic approach to eliminate glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto individual CA1 pyramidal neurons in a mosaic fashion in vivo. Surprisingly, while electrical properties are profoundly affected in these neurons, as well as inhibitory synaptic transmission, we found little perturbation of neuronal morphology, demonstrating a functional segregation of excitatory synaptic transmission from neuronal morphological development.

  3. The AAA+ ATPase, Thorase Regulates AMPA Receptor-Dependent Synaptic Plasticity and Behavior

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jianmin; Wang, Yue; Chi, Zhikai; Keuss, Matthew J.; Pai, Ying-Min Emily; Kang, Ho Chul; Shin, Jooho; Bugayenko, Artem; Wang, Hong; Xiong, Yulan; Pletnikov, Mikhail V.; Mattson, Mark P.; Dawson, Ted M.; Dawson, Valina L.

    2011-01-01

    SUMMARY The synaptic insertion or removal of AMPA receptors (AMPAR) plays critical roles in the regulation of synaptic activity reflected in the expression of long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). The cellular events underlying this important process in learning and memory are still being revealed. Here we describe and characterize the AAA+ ATPase, Thorase, that regulates the expression of surface AMPAR. In an ATPase-dependent manner Thorase mediates the internalization of AMPAR by disassembling the AMPAR-GRIP1 complex. Following genetic deletion of Thorase, the internalization of AMPAR is substantially reduced, leading to increased amplitudes of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents, enhancement of LTP and elimination of LTD. These molecular events are expressed as deficits in learning and memory in Thorase null mice. This study identifies an AAA+ ATPase that plays a critical role in regulating the surface expression of AMPAR and thereby regulates synaptic plasticity and learning and memory. PMID:21496646

  4. Spontaneous Release Regulates Synaptic Scaling in the Embryonic Spinal Network In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Garcia-Bereguiain, Miguel Angel; Gonzalez-Islas, Carlos; Lindsly, Casie

    2016-01-01

    Homeostatic plasticity mechanisms maintain cellular or network spiking activity within a physiologically functional range through compensatory changes in synaptic strength or intrinsic cellular excitability. Synaptic scaling is one form of homeostatic plasticity that is triggered after blockade of spiking or neurotransmission in which the strengths of all synaptic inputs to a cell are multiplicatively scaled upward or downward in a compensatory fashion. We have shown previously that synaptic upscaling could be triggered in chick embryo spinal motoneurons by complete blockade of spiking or GABAA receptor (GABAAR) activation for 2 d in vivo. Here, we alter GABAAR activation in a more physiologically relevant manner by chronically adjusting presynaptic GABA release in vivo using nicotinic modulators or an mGluR2 agonist. Manipulating GABAAR activation in this way triggered scaling in a mechanistically similar manner to scaling induced by complete blockade of GABAARs. Remarkably, we find that altering action-potential (AP)-independent spontaneous release was able to fully account for the observed bidirectional scaling, whereas dramatic changes in spiking activity associated with spontaneous network activity had little effect on quantal amplitude. The reliance of scaling on an AP-independent process challenges the plasticity's relatedness to spiking in the living embryonic spinal network. Our findings have implications for the trigger and function of synaptic scaling and suggest that spontaneous release functions to regulate synaptic strength homeostatically in vivo. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Homeostatic synaptic scaling is thought to prevent inappropriate levels of spiking activity through compensatory adjustments in the strength of synaptic inputs. Therefore, it is thought that perturbations in spike rate trigger scaling. Here, we find that dramatic changes in spiking activity in the embryonic spinal cord have little effect on synaptic scaling; conversely, alterations in

  5. Roles for Regulator of G Protein Signaling Proteins in Synaptic Signaling and Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Gerber, Kyle J.; Squires, Katherine E.

    2016-01-01

    The regulator of G protein signaling (RGS) family of proteins serves critical roles in G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) and heterotrimeric G protein signal transduction. RGS proteins are best understood as negative regulators of GPCR/G protein signaling. They achieve this by acting as GTPase activating proteins (GAPs) for Gα subunits and accelerating the turnoff of G protein signaling. Many RGS proteins also bind additional signaling partners that either regulate their functions or enable them to regulate other important signaling events. At neuronal synapses, GPCRs, G proteins, and RGS proteins work in coordination to regulate key aspects of neurotransmitter release, synaptic transmission, and synaptic plasticity, which are necessary for central nervous system physiology and behavior. Accumulating evidence has revealed key roles for specific RGS proteins in multiple signaling pathways at neuronal synapses, regulating both pre- and postsynaptic signaling events and synaptic plasticity. Here, we review and highlight the current knowledge of specific RGS proteins (RGS2, RGS4, RGS7, RGS9-2, and RGS14) that have been clearly demonstrated to serve critical roles in modulating synaptic signaling and plasticity throughout the brain, and we consider their potential as future therapeutic targets. PMID:26655302

  6. FAIM-L regulation of XIAP degradation modulates Synaptic Long-Term Depression and Axon Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Mármol, Ramón; Barneda-Zahonero, Bruna; Soto, David; Andrés, Rosa Maria; Coccia, Elena; Gasull, Xavier; Planells-Ferrer, Laura; Moubarak, Rana S.; Soriano, Eduardo; Comella, Joan X.

    2016-01-01

    Caspases have recently emerged as key regulators of axonal pruning and degeneration and of long-term depression (LTD), a long-lasting form of synaptic plasticity. However, the mechanism underlying these functions remains unclear. In this context, XIAP has been shown to modulate these processes. The neuron-specific form of FAIM protein (FAIM-L) is a death receptor antagonist that stabilizes XIAP protein levels, thus preventing death receptor-induced neuronal apoptosis. Here we show that FAIM-L modulates synaptic transmission, prevents chemical-LTD induction in hippocampal neurons, and thwarts axon degeneration after nerve growth factor (NGF) withdrawal. Additionally, we demonstrate that the participation of FAIM-L in these two processes is dependent on its capacity to stabilize XIAP protein levels. Our data reveal FAIM-L as a regulator of axonal degeneration and synaptic plasticity. PMID:27767058

  7. Nervous Wreck and Cdc42 cooperate to regulate endocytic actin assembly during synaptic growth

    PubMed Central

    Rodal, Avital A.; Motola-Barnes, Rebecca N.; Littleton, J. Troy

    2008-01-01

    Regulation of synaptic morphology depends on endocytosis of activated growth signal receptors, but the mechanisms regulating this membrane trafficking event are unclear. Actin polymerization mediated by WASp (Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome Protein) and the Arp2/3 (Actin related protein 2/3) complex generates forces at multiple stages of endocytosis. F-BAR/SH3 domain proteins play key roles in this process by coordinating membrane deformation with WASp-dependent actin polymerization. However, it is not known how other WASp ligands, such as the small GTPase Cdc42, coordinate with F-BAR/SH3 proteins to regulate actin polymerization at membranes. Nervous Wreck (Nwk) is a conserved neuronal F-BAR/SH3 protein that localizes to periactive zones at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ) and is required for regulation of synaptic growth via BMP signaling. Here we show that Nwk interacts with the endocytic proteins dynamin and Dap160 and functions together with Cdc42 to promote WASp-mediated actin polymerization in vitro and to regulate synaptic growth in vivo. Cdc42 function is associated with Rab11-dependent recycling endosomes, and we show that Rab11 co-localizes with Nwk at the NMJ. Taken together, our results suggest that synaptic growth activated by growth factor signaling is controlled at an endosomal compartment via coordinated Nwk and Cdc42-dependent actin assembly. PMID:18701694

  8. Synaptic organization of the Drosophila antennal lobe and its regulation by the Teneurins

    PubMed Central

    Mosca, Timothy J; Luo, Liqun

    2014-01-01

    Understanding information flow through neuronal circuits requires knowledge of their synaptic organization. In this study, we utilized fluorescent pre- and postsynaptic markers to map synaptic organization in the Drosophila antennal lobe, the first olfactory processing center. Olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs) produce a constant synaptic density across different glomeruli. Each ORN within a class contributes nearly identical active zone number. Active zones from ORNs, projection neurons (PNs), and local interneurons have distinct subglomerular and subcellular distributions. The correct number of ORN active zones and PN acetylcholine receptor clusters requires the Teneurins, conserved transmembrane proteins involved in neuromuscular synapse organization and synaptic partner matching. Ten-a acts in ORNs to organize presynaptic active zones via the spectrin cytoskeleton. Ten-m acts in PNs autonomously to regulate acetylcholine receptor cluster number and transsynaptically to regulate ORN active zone number. These studies advanced our ability to assess synaptic architecture in complex CNS circuits and their underlying molecular mechanisms. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.03726.001 PMID:25310239

  9. MICAL-like Regulates Fasciclin II Membrane Cycling and Synaptic Development

    PubMed Central

    Nahm, Minyeop; Park, Sunyoung; Lee, Jihye; Lee, Seungbok

    2016-01-01

    Fasciclin II (FasII), the Drosophila ortholog of neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM), plays a critical role in synaptic stabilization and plasticity. Although this molecule undergoes constitutive cycling at the synaptic membrane, how its membrane trafficking is regulated to ensure proper synaptic development remains poorly understood. In a genetic screen, we recovered a mutation in Drosophila mical-like that displays an increase in bouton numbers and a decrease in FasII levels at the neuromuscular junction (NMJ). Similar phenotypes were induced by presynaptic, but not postsynaptic, knockdown of mical-like expression. FasII trafficking assays revealed that the recycling of internalized FasII molecules to the cell surface was significantly impaired in mical-like-knockdown cells. Importantly, this defect correlated with an enhancement of endosomal sorting of FasII to the lysosomal degradation pathway. Similarly, synaptic vesicle exocytosis was also impaired in mical-like mutants. Together, our results identify Mical-like as a novel regulator of synaptic growth and FasII endocytic recycling. PMID:27770767

  10. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor differentially regulates excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in hippocampal cultures.

    PubMed

    Bolton, M M; Pittman, A J; Lo, D C

    2000-05-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has been postulated to be a key signaling molecule in regulating synaptic strength and overall circuit activity. In this context, we have found that BDNF dramatically increases the frequency of spontaneously initiated action potentials in hippocampal neurons in dissociated culture. Using analysis of unitary synaptic transmission and immunocytochemical methods, we determined that chronic treatment with BDNF potentiates both excitatory and inhibitory transmission, but that it does so via different mechanisms. BDNF strengthens excitation primarily by augmenting the amplitude of AMPA receptor-mediated miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs) but enhances inhibition by increasing the frequency of mIPSC and increasing the size of GABAergic synaptic terminals. In contrast to observations in other systems, BDNF-mediated increases in AMPA-receptor mediated mEPSC amplitudes did not require activity, because blocking action potentials with tetrodotoxin for the entire duration of BDNF treatment had no effect on the magnitude of this enhancement. These forms of synaptic regulations appear to be a selective action of BDNF because intrinsic excitability, synapse number, and neuronal survival are not affected in these cultures. Thus, although BDNF induces a net increase in overall circuit activity, this results from potentiation of both excitatory and inhibitory synaptic drive through distinct and selective physiological mechanisms.

  11. Fragile X mental retardation protein regulates trans-synaptic signaling in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Friedman, Samuel H; Dani, Neil; Rushton, Emma; Broadie, Kendal

    2013-11-01

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most common inherited determinant of intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorders, is caused by loss of the fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene product (FMRP), an mRNA-binding translational repressor. A number of conserved FMRP targets have been identified in the well-characterized Drosophila FXS disease model, but FMRP is highly pleiotropic in function and the full spectrum of FMRP targets has yet to be revealed. In this study, screens for upregulated neural proteins in Drosophila fmr1 (dfmr1) null mutants reveal strong elevation of two synaptic heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs): GPI-anchored glypican Dally-like protein (Dlp) and transmembrane Syndecan (Sdc). Our recent work has shown that Dlp and Sdc act as co-receptors regulating extracellular ligands upstream of intracellular signal transduction in multiple trans-synaptic pathways that drive synaptogenesis. Consistently, dfmr1 null synapses exhibit altered WNT signaling, with changes in both Wingless (Wg) ligand abundance and downstream Frizzled-2 (Fz2) receptor C-terminal nuclear import. Similarly, a parallel anterograde signaling ligand, Jelly belly (Jeb), and downstream ERK phosphorylation (dpERK) are depressed at dfmr1 null synapses. In contrast, the retrograde BMP ligand Glass bottom boat (Gbb) and downstream signaling via phosphorylation of the transcription factor MAD (pMAD) seem not to be affected. To determine whether HSPG upregulation is causative for synaptogenic defects, HSPGs were genetically reduced to control levels in the dfmr1 null background. HSPG correction restored both (1) Wg and Jeb trans-synaptic signaling, and (2) synaptic architecture and transmission strength back to wild-type levels. Taken together, these data suggest that FMRP negatively regulates HSPG co-receptors controlling trans-synaptic signaling during synaptogenesis, and that loss of this regulation causes synaptic structure and function defects characterizing the FXS disease

  12. Phosphorylation of Synaptojanin Differentially Regulates Endocytosis of Functionally Distinct Synaptic Vesicle Pools

    PubMed Central

    Geng, Junhua; Wang, Liping; Lee, Joo Yeun; Chen, Chun-Kan

    2016-01-01

    The rapid replenishment of synaptic vesicles through endocytosis is crucial for sustaining synaptic transmission during intense neuronal activity. Synaptojanin (Synj), a phosphoinositide phosphatase, is known to play an important role in vesicle recycling by promoting the uncoating of clathrin following synaptic vesicle uptake. Synj has been shown to be a substrate of the minibrain (Mnb) kinase, a fly homolog of the dual-specificity tyrosine phosphorylation-regulated kinase 1A (DYRK1A); however, the functional impacts of Synj phosphorylation by Mnb are not well understood. Here we identify that Mnb phosphorylates Synj at S1029 in Drosophila. We find that phosphorylation of Synj at S1029 enhances Synj phosphatase activity, alters interaction between Synj and endophilin, and promotes efficient endocytosis of the active cycling vesicle pool (also referred to as exo-endo cycling pool) at the expense of reserve pool vesicle endocytosis. Dephosphorylated Synj, on the other hand, is deficient in the endocytosis of the active recycling pool vesicles but maintains reserve pool vesicle endocytosis to restore total vesicle pool size and sustain synaptic transmission. Together, our findings reveal a novel role for Synj in modulating reserve pool vesicle endocytosis and further indicate that dynamic phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of Synj differentially maintain endocytosis of distinct functional synaptic vesicle pools. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Synaptic vesicle endocytosis sustains communication between neurons during a wide range of neuronal activities by recycling used vesicle membrane and protein components. Here we identify that Synaptojanin, a protein with a known role in synaptic vesicle endocytosis, is phosphorylated at S1029 in vivo by the Minibrain kinase. We further demonstrate that the phosphorylation status of Synaptojanin at S1029 differentially regulates its participation in the recycling of distinct synaptic vesicle pools. Our results reveal a new role for

  13. Neurotrophins and target interactions in the development and regulation of sympathetic neuron electrical and synaptic properties

    PubMed Central

    Luther, Jason A.; Birren, Susan J.

    2009-01-01

    The electrical and synaptic properties of neurons are essential for determining the function of the nervous system. Thus, understanding the mechanisms that control the appropriate developmental acquisition and maintenance of these properties is a critical problem in neuroscience. A great deal of our understanding of these developmental mechanisms comes from studies of soluble growth factor signaling between cells in the peripheral nervous system. The sympathetic nervous system has provided a model for studying the role of these factors both in early development and in the establishment of mature properties. In particular, neurotrophins produced by the targets of sympathetic innervation regulate the synaptic and electrophysiological properties of postnatal sympathetic neurons. In this review we examine the role of neurotrophin signaling in the regulation of synaptic strength, neurotransmitter phenotype, voltage-gated currents and repetitive firing properties of sympathetic neurons. Together, these properties determine the level of sympathetic drive to target organs such as the heart. Changes in this sympathetic drive, which may be linked to dysfunctions in neurotrophin signaling, are associated with devastating diseases such as high blood pressure, arrhythmias and heart attack. Neurotrophins appear to play similar roles in modulating the synaptic and electrical properties of other peripheral and central neuronal systems, suggesting that information provided from studies in the sympathetic nervous system will be widely applicable for understanding the neurotrophic regulation of neuronal function in other systems. PMID:19748836

  14. CD44: a novel synaptic cell adhesion molecule regulating structural and functional plasticity of dendritic spines

    PubMed Central

    Roszkowska, Matylda; Skupien, Anna; Wójtowicz, Tomasz; Konopka, Anna; Gorlewicz, Adam; Kisiel, Magdalena; Bekisz, Marek; Ruszczycki, Blazej; Dolezyczek, Hubert; Rejmak, Emilia; Knapska, Ewelina; Mozrzymas, Jerzy W.; Wlodarczyk, Jakub; Wilczynski, Grzegorz M.; Dzwonek, Joanna

    2016-01-01

    Synaptic cell adhesion molecules regulate signal transduction, synaptic function, and plasticity. However, their role in neuronal interactions with the extracellular matrix (ECM) is not well understood. Here we report that the CD44, a transmembrane receptor for hyaluronan, modulates synaptic plasticity. High-resolution ultrastructural analysis showed that CD44 was localized at mature synapses in the adult brain. The reduced expression of CD44 affected the synaptic excitatory transmission of primary hippocampal neurons, simultaneously modifying dendritic spine shape. The frequency of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents decreased, accompanied by dendritic spine elongation and thinning. These structural and functional alterations went along with a decrease in the number of presynaptic Bassoon puncta, together with a reduction of PSD-95 levels at dendritic spines, suggesting a reduced number of functional synapses. Lack of CD44 also abrogated spine head enlargement upon neuronal stimulation. Moreover, our results indicate that CD44 contributes to proper dendritic spine shape and function by modulating the activity of actin cytoskeleton regulators, that is, Rho GTPases (RhoA, Rac1, and Cdc42). Thus CD44 appears to be a novel molecular player regulating functional and structural plasticity of dendritic spines. PMID:27798233

  15. A novel non-canonical Notch signaling regulates expression of synaptic vesicle proteins in excitatory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hayashi, Yukari; Nishimune, Hiroshi; Hozumi, Katsuto; Saga, Yumiko; Harada, Akihiro; Yuzaki, Michisuke; Iwatsubo, Takeshi; Kopan, Raphael; Tomita, Taisuke

    2016-01-01

    Notch signaling plays crucial roles for cellular differentiation during development through γ-secretase-dependent intramembrane proteolysis followed by transcription of target genes. Although recent studies implicate that Notch regulates synaptic plasticity or cognitive performance, the molecular mechanism how Notch works in mature neurons remains uncertain. Here we demonstrate that a novel Notch signaling is involved in expression of synaptic proteins in postmitotic neurons. Levels of several synaptic vesicle proteins including synaptophysin 1 and VGLUT1 were increased when neurons were cocultured with Notch ligands-expressing NIH3T3 cells. Neuron-specific deletion of Notch genes decreased these proteins, suggesting that Notch signaling maintains the expression of synaptic vesicle proteins in a cell-autonomous manner. Unexpectedly, cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG) inhibitor, but not γ-secretase inhibitor, abolished the elevation of synaptic vesicle proteins, suggesting that generation of Notch intracellular domain is dispensable for this function. These data uncover a ligand-dependent, but γ-secretase-independent, non-canonical Notch signaling involved in presynaptic protein expression in postmitotic neurons. PMID:27040987

  16. Understanding and Facilitating Self-Regulated Help Seeking

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karabenick, Stuart A.; Dembo, Myron H.

    2011-01-01

    Help seeking is an important developmental skill, a form of behavioral, or social, self-regulation employed by cognitively, behaviorally, and emotionally engaged learners. Help seeking is unique among learning strategies as it may imply that learners are incapable of task completion or satisfactory performance without assistance, which can be…

  17. Shank1 regulates excitatory synaptic transmission in mouse hippocampal parvalbumin-expressing inhibitory interneurons.

    PubMed

    Mao, Wenjie; Watanabe, Takuya; Cho, Sukhee; Frost, Jeffrey L; Truong, Tina; Zhao, Xiaohu; Futai, Kensuke

    2015-04-01

    The Shank genes (SHANK1, 2, 3) encode scaffold proteins highly enriched in postsynaptic densities where they regulate synaptic structure in spiny neurons. Mutations in human Shank genes are linked to autism spectrum disorder and schizophrenia. Shank1 mutant mice exhibit intriguing cognitive phenotypes reminiscent of individuals with autism spectrum disorder. However, the molecular mechanisms leading to the human pathophysiological phenotypes and mouse behaviors have not been elucidated. In this study it is shown that Shank1 protein is highly localized in parvalbumin-expressing (PV+) fast-spiking inhibitory interneurons in the hippocampus. Importantly, a lack of Shank1 in hippocampal CA1 PV+ neurons reduced excitatory synaptic inputs and inhibitory synaptic outputs to pyramidal neurons. Furthermore, it is demonstrated that hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons in Shank1 mutant mice exhibit a shift in the excitatory and inhibitory balance (E-I balance), a pathophysiological hallmark of autism spectrum disorder. The mutant mice also exhibit lower expression of gephyrin (a scaffold component of inhibitory synapses), supporting the dysregulation of E-I balance in the hippocampus. These results suggest that Shank1 scaffold in PV+ interneurons regulates excitatory synaptic strength and participates in the maintenance of E-I balance in excitatory neurons.

  18. Differential regulation of synaptic inputs to dentate hilar border interneurons by metabotropic glutamate receptors.

    PubMed

    Doherty, J; Dingledine, R

    1998-06-01

    Regulation of synaptic transmission by metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) was examined at two excitatory inputs to interneurons with cell bodies at the granule cell-hilus border in hippocampal slices taken from neonatal rats. Subgroup-selective mGluR agonists altered the reliability, or probability of transmitter release, of evoked minimal excitatory synaptic inputs and decreased the amplitudes of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) evoked with conventional stimulation. The group II-selective agonist, (2S,1R',2R',3R')-2-(2, 3-dicarboxylcyclopropyl) glycine (DCG-IV; 1 microM), reversibly depressed the reliability of EPSCs evoked by stimulation of the dentate granule cell layer. However, DCG-IV had no significant effect on EPSCs evoked by CA3 stimulation in the majority (82%) of hilar border interneurons. Both the group III-selective agonist, -(+)-2-amino-4-phosphonobutyric acid (-AP4; 3 microM), and the group I-selective agonist, (RS)-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG; 20 microM) reversibly depressed synaptic input to interneurons from both CA3 and the granule cell layer. We conclude that multiple pharmacologically distinct mGluRs presynaptically regulate synaptic transmission at two excitatory inputs to hilar border interneurons. Further, the degree of mGluR-meditated depression of excitatory drive is greater at synapses from dentate granule cells onto interneurons than at synapses from CA3 pyramidal cells.

  19. GABAergic synaptic plasticity during a developmentally regulated sleep-like state in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Dabbish, Nooreen S; Raizen, David M

    2011-11-02

    Approximately one-fourth of the neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans adults are born during larval development, indicating tremendous plasticity in larval nervous system structure. Larval development shows cyclical expression of sleep-like quiescent behavior during lethargus periods, which occur at larval stage transitions. We studied plasticity at the neuromuscular junction during lethargus using the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor aldicarb. The rate of animal contraction when exposed to aldicarb is controlled by the balance between excitatory cholinergic and inhibitory GABAergic input on the muscle. During lethargus, there is an accelerated rate of contraction on aldicarb. Mutant analysis and optogenetic studies reveal that GABAergic synaptic transmission is reduced during lethargus. Worms in lethargus show partial resistance to GABA(A) receptor agonists, indicating that postsynaptic mechanisms contribute to lethargus-dependent plasticity. Using genetic manipulations that separate the quiescent state from the developmental stage, we show that the synaptic plasticity is dependent on developmental time and not on the behavioral state of the animal. We propose that the synaptic plasticity regulated by a developmental clock in C. elegans is analogous to synaptic plasticity regulated by the circadian clock in other species.

  20. Synaptic activity bidirectionally regulates a novel sequence-specific S-Q phosphoproteome in neurons

    PubMed Central

    Siddoway, Benjamin; Hou, Hailong; Yang, Hongtian; Petralia, Ronald; Xia, Houhui

    2013-01-01

    Protein phosphorylation plays a critical role in neuronal transcription, translation, cell viability, and synaptic plasticity. In neurons, phospho-enzymes and specific substrates directly link glutamate release and post-synaptic depolarization to these cellular functions; however, many of these enzymes and their protein substrates remain uncharacterized or unidentified. In this article, we identify a novel, synaptically-driven neuronal phosphoproteome characterized by a specific motif of serine/threonine-glutamine ([S/T]-Q, abbreviated as SQ). These SQ-containing substrates are predominantly localized to dendrites, synapses, the soma; and activation of this SQ phosphoproteome by bicuculline application is induced via calcium influx through L-type calcium channels. On the other hand, acute application of NMDA can inactivate this SQ phosphoproteome. We demonstrate that the SQ motif kinase Ataxia-telangiectasia mutated (ATM) can also localize to dendrites and dendritic spines, in addition to other subcellular compartments, and is activated by bicuculline application. Pharmacology studies indicate that ATM and its sister kinase ATR up-regulate these neuronal SQ substrates. Phosphoproteomics identified over 150 SQ-containing substrates whose phosphorylation is bidirectionally-regulated by synaptic activity. PMID:24117848

  1. Short-Term Synaptic Plasticity Regulation in Solution-Gated Indium-Gallium-Zinc-Oxide Electric-Double-Layer Transistors.

    PubMed

    Wan, Chang Jin; Liu, Yang Hui; Zhu, Li Qiang; Feng, Ping; Shi, Yi; Wan, Qing

    2016-04-20

    In the biological nervous system, synaptic plasticity regulation is based on the modulation of ionic fluxes, and such regulation was regarded as the fundamental mechanism underlying memory and learning. Inspired by such biological strategies, indium-gallium-zinc-oxide (IGZO) electric-double-layer (EDL) transistors gated by aqueous solutions were proposed for synaptic behavior emulations. Short-term synaptic plasticity, such as paired-pulse facilitation, high-pass filtering, and orientation tuning, was experimentally emulated in these EDL transistors. Most importantly, we found that such short-term synaptic plasticity can be effectively regulated by alcohol (ethyl alcohol) and salt (potassium chloride) additives. Our results suggest that solution gated oxide-based EDL transistors could act as the platforms for short-term synaptic plasticity emulation.

  2. Spartin regulates synaptic growth and neuronal survival by inhibiting BMP-mediated microtubule stabilization.

    PubMed

    Nahm, Minyeop; Lee, Min-Jung; Parkinson, William; Lee, Mihye; Kim, Haeran; Kim, Yoon-Jung; Kim, Sungdae; Cho, Yi Sul; Min, Byung-Moo; Bae, Yong Chul; Broadie, Kendal; Lee, Seungbok

    2013-02-20

    Troyer syndrome is a hereditary spastic paraplegia caused by human spartin (SPG20) gene mutations. We have generated a Drosophila disease model showing that Spartin functions presynaptically with endocytic adaptor Eps15 to regulate synaptic growth and function. Spartin inhibits bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling by promoting endocytic degradation of BMP receptor wishful thinking (Wit). Drosophila fragile X mental retardation protein (dFMRP) and Futsch/MAP1B are downstream effectors of Spartin and BMP signaling in regulating microtubule stability and synaptic growth. Loss of Spartin or elevation of BMP signaling induces age-dependent progressive defects resembling hereditary spastic paraplegias, including motor dysfunction and brain neurodegeneration. Null spartin phenotypes are prevented by administration of the microtubule-destabilizing drug vinblastine. Together, these results demonstrate that Spartin regulates both synaptic development and neuronal survival by controlling microtubule stability via the BMP-dFMRP-Futsch pathway, suggesting that impaired regulation of microtubule stability is a core pathogenic component in Troyer syndrome.

  3. Spartin Regulates Synaptic Growth and Neuronal Survival by Inhibiting BMP-Mediated Microtubule Stabilization

    PubMed Central

    Nahm, Minyeop; Lee, Min-Jung; Parkinson, William; Lee, Mihye; Kim, Haeran; Kim, Yoon-Jung; Kim, Sungdae; Cho, Yi Sul; Min, Byung-Moo; Bae, Yong Chul; Broadie, Kendal; Lee, Seungbok

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Troyer syndrome is a hereditary spastic paraplegia caused by human spartin (SPG20) gene mutations. We have generated a Drosophila disease model showing that Spartin functions presynaptically with endocytic adaptor Eps15 to regulate synaptic growth and function. Spartin inhibits bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling by promoting endocytic degradation of BMP receptor wishful thinking (Wit). Drosophila fragile X mental retardation protein (dFMRP) and Futsch/MAP1B are downstream effectors of Spartin and BMP signaling in regulating microtubule stability and synaptic growth. Loss of Spartin or elevation of BMP signaling induces age-dependent progressive defects resembling hereditary spastic paraplegias, including motor dysfunction and brain neurodegeneration. Null spartin phenotypes are prevented by administration of the microtubule-destabilizing drug vinblastine. Together, these results demonstrate that Spartin regulates both synaptic development and neuronal survival by controlling microtubule stability via the BMP-dFMRP-Futsch pathway, suggesting that impaired regulation of microtubule stability is a core pathogenic component in Troyer syndrome. PMID:23439121

  4. Shaping synaptic plasticity: the role of activity-mediated epigenetic regulation on gene transcription.

    PubMed

    Cortés-Mendoza, Javier; Díaz de León-Guerrero, Sol; Pedraza-Alva, Gustavo; Pérez-Martínez, Leonor

    2013-10-01

    Learning and memory are basic functions of the brain that allowed human evolution. It is well accepted that during learning and memory formation the dynamic establishment of new active synaptic connections is crucial. Persistent synaptic activation leads to molecular events that include increased release of neurotransmitters, increased expression of receptors on the postsynaptic neuron, thus creating a positive feedback that results in the activation of distinct signaling pathways that temporally and permanently alter specific patterns of gene expression. However, the epigenetic changes that allow the establishment of long term genetic programs that control learning and memory are not completely understood. Even less is known regarding the signaling events triggered by synaptic activity that regulate these epigenetic marks. Here we review the current understanding of the molecular mechanisms controlling activity-dependent gene transcription leading synaptic plasticity and memory formation. We describe how Ca(2+) entry through N-methyl-d-aspartate-type glutamate neurotransmitter receptors result in the activation of specific signaling pathways leading to changes in gene expression, giving special emphasis to the recent data pointing out different epigenetic mechanisms (histone acetylation, methylation and phosphorylation as well as DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation) underlying learning and memory.

  5. Chronic lead exposure alters presynaptic calcium regulation and synaptic facilitation in Drosophila larvae.

    PubMed

    He, T; Hirsch, H V B; Ruden, D M; Lnenicka, G A

    2009-09-01

    Prolonged exposure to inorganic lead (Pb(2+)) during development has been shown to influence activity-dependent synaptic plasticity in the mammalian brain, possibly by altering the regulation of intracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)](i)). To explore this possibility, we studied the effect of Pb(2+) exposure on [Ca(2+)](i) regulation and synaptic facilitation at the neuromuscular junction of larval Drosophila. Wild-type Drosophila (CS) were raised from egg stages through the third larval instar in media containing either 0 microM, 100 microM or 250 microM Pb(2+) and identified motor terminals were examined in late third-instar larvae. To compare resting [Ca(2+)](i) and the changes in [Ca(2+)](i) produced by impulse activity, the motor terminals were loaded with a Ca(2+) indicator, either Oregon Green 488 BAPTA-1 (OGB-1) or fura-2 conjugated to a dextran. We found that rearing in Pb(2+) did not significantly change the resting [Ca(2+)](i) nor the Ca(2+) transient produced in synaptic boutons by single action potentials (APs); however, the Ca(2+) transients produced by 10 Hz and 20 Hz AP trains were larger in Pb(2+)-exposed boutons and decayed more slowly. For larvae raised in 250 microM Pb(2+), the increase in [Ca(2+)](i) during an AP train (20 Hz) was 29% greater than in control larvae and the [Ca(2+)](i) decay tau was 69% greater. These differences appear to result from reduced activity of the plasma membrane Ca(2+) ATPase (PMCA), which extrudes Ca(2+) from these synaptic terminals. These findings are consistent with studies in mammals showing a Pb(2+)-dependent reduction in PMCA activity. We also observed a Pb(2+)-dependent enhancement of synaptic facilitation at these larval neuromuscular synapses. Facilitation of EPSP amplitude during AP trains (20 Hz) was 55% greater in Pb(2+)-reared larvae than in controls. These results showed that Pb(2+) exposure produced changes in the regulation of [Ca(2+)](i) during impulse activity, which could affect various

  6. Chronic lead exposure alters presynaptic calcium regulation and synaptic facilitation in Drosophila larvae

    PubMed Central

    He, T.; Hirsch, H.V.B.; Ruden, D. M.; Lnenicka, G. A.

    2009-01-01

    Prolonged exposure to inorganic lead (Pb2+) during development has been shown to influence activity-dependent synaptic plasticity in the mammalian brain, possibly by altering the regulation of intracellular Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i). To explore this possibility, we studied the effect of Pb2+ exposure on [Ca2+]i regulation and synaptic facilitation at the neuromuscular junction of larval Drosophila. Wild-type Drosophila (CS) were raised from egg stages through the third larval instar in media containing either 0, 100 μM or 250 μM Pb2+ and identified motor terminals were examined in late third-instar larvae. To compare resting [Ca2+]i and the changes in [Ca2+]i produced by impulse activity, the motor terminals were loaded with a Ca2+ indicator, either Oregon Green 488 BAPTA-1 (OGB-1) or fura-2 conjugated to a dextran. We found that rearing in Pb2+ did not significantly change the resting [Ca2+]i nor the Ca2+ transient produced in synaptic boutons by single action potentials (APs); however, the Ca2+ transients produced by 10 and 20 Hz AP trains were larger in Pb2+-exposed boutons and decayed more slowly. For larvae raised in 250 μM Pb2+, the increase in [Ca2+]i during an AP train (20 Hz) was 29% greater than in control larvae and the [Ca2+]i decay τ was 69% greater. These differences appear to result from reduced activity of the plasma membrane Ca2+ ATPase (PMCA), which extrudes Ca2+ from these synaptic terminals. These findings are consistent with studies in mammals showing a Pb2+-dependent reduction in PMCA activity. We also observed a Pb2+-dependent enhancement of synaptic facilitation at these larval neuromuscular synapses. Facilitation of EPSP amplitude during AP trains (20 Hz) was 55% greater in Pb2+-reared larvae than in controls. These results showed that Pb2+ exposure produced changes in the regulation of [Ca2+]i during impulse activity, which could affect various aspects of nervous system development. At the mature synapse, this altered [Ca2+]i

  7. Regulated superinfection may help HIV adaptation on rugged landscape.

    PubMed

    Leontiev, Vladimir; Hadany, Lilach

    2010-05-01

    Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is highly adaptable to a, changing environment, including host immune response and antiviral drugs. Superinfection occurs when several HIV proviruses share the same host cell. We previously proposed that HIV may regulate the rate of its superinfection, which would help the virus to adapt (Leontiev et al., 2008). In this paper we, investigate the effect of regulated superinfection in HIV on complex, adaptation on rugged fitness landscapes. We present the results of our in silico experiments that suggest that regulated superinfection facilitates HIV, adaptation on rugged fitness landscapes and that the advantage of regulated, superinfection increases with the ruggedness of the landscape.

  8. Neural circular RNAs are derived from synaptic genes and regulated by development and plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Mantian; Glock, Caspar; Quedenau, Claudia; Wang, Xi; Hou, Jingyi; Liu, Hongyu; Sun, Wei; Sambandan, Sivakumar; Chen, Tao; Schuman, Erin M.; Chen, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Circular RNAs (circRNAs) have re-emerged as an interesting RNA species. Here, by deep RNA profiling in different mouse tissues, we observed that circRNAs are significantly enriched in brain.and a disproportionate fraction of them is derived from host genes that code for synaptic proteins. Moreover, based on separate profiling of the RNAs localized in neuronal cell bodies and neuropil, on average, circRNAs are more enriched in the neuropil than their host gene mRNA isoforms. Using high resolution in situ hybridization we, for the first time, visualized circRNA punctae in the dendrites of neurons. Consistent with the idea that circRNAs might regulate synaptic function, during development, many circRNAs change their abundance abruptly at a time corresponding to synaptogenesis. In addition, following a homeostatic downscaling of neuronal activity many circRNAs exhibit significant up or down-regulation. Together, our data indicate that brain circRNAs are positioned to respond to and regulate synaptic function. PMID:25714049

  9. Network-based characterization of the synaptic proteome reveals that removal of epigenetic regulator Prmt8 restricts proteins associated with synaptic maturation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Patrick Kia Ming; Goh, Wilson Wen Bin; Sng, Judy Chia Ghee

    2017-02-01

    The brain adapts to dynamic environmental conditions by altering its epigenetic state, thereby influencing neuronal transcriptional programs. An example of an epigenetic modification is protein methylation, catalyzed by protein arginine methyltransferases (PRMT). One member, Prmt8, is selectively expressed in the central nervous system during a crucial phase of early development, but little else is known regarding its function. We hypothesize Prmt8 plays a role in synaptic maturation during development. To evaluate this, we used a proteome-wide approach to characterize the synaptic proteome of Prmt8 knockout versus wild-type mice. Through comparative network-based analyses, proteins and functional clusters related to neurite development were identified to be differentially regulated between the two genotypes. One interesting protein that was differentially regulated was tenascin-R (TNR). Chromatin immunoprecipitation demonstrated binding of PRMT8 to the tenascin-r (Tnr) promoter. TNR, a component of perineuronal nets, preserves structural integrity of synaptic connections within neuronal networks during the development of visual-somatosensory cortices. On closer inspection, Prmt8 removal increased net formation and decreased inhibitory parvalbumin-positive (PV+) puncta on pyramidal neurons, thereby hindering the maturation of circuits. Consequently, visual acuity of the knockout mice was reduced. Our results demonstrated Prmt8's involvement in synaptic maturation and its prospect as an epigenetic modulator of developmental neuroplasticity by regulating structural elements such as the perineuronal nets.

  10. GluN2B-Containing NMDA Receptors Regulate AMPA Receptor Traffic through Anchoring of the Synaptic Proteasome.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Joana S; Schmidt, Jeannette; Rio, Pedro; Águas, Rodolfo; Rooyakkers, Amanda; Li, Ka Wan; Smit, August B; Craig, Ann Marie; Carvalho, Ana Luisa

    2015-06-03

    NMDA receptors play a central role in shaping the strength of synaptic connections throughout development and in mediating synaptic plasticity mechanisms that underlie some forms of learning and memory formation in the CNS. In the hippocampus and the neocortex, GluN1 is combined primarily with GluN2A and GluN2B, which are differentially expressed during development and confer distinct molecular and physiological properties to NMDA receptors. The contribution of each subunit to the synaptic traffic of NMDA receptors and therefore to their role during development and in synaptic plasticity is still controversial. We report a critical role for the GluN2B subunit in regulating NMDA receptor synaptic targeting. In the absence of GluN2B, the synaptic levels of AMPA receptors are increased and accompanied by decreased constitutive endocytosis of GluA1-AMPA receptor. We used quantitative proteomic analysis to identify changes in the composition of postsynaptic densities from GluN2B(-/-) mouse primary neuronal cultures and found altered levels of several ubiquitin proteasome system components, in particular decreased levels of proteasome subunits. Enhancing the proteasome activity with a novel proteasome activator restored the synaptic levels of AMPA receptors in GluN2B(-/-) neurons and their endocytosis, revealing that GluN2B-mediated anchoring of the synaptic proteasome is responsible for fine tuning AMPA receptor synaptic levels under basal conditions.

  11. The Neuroplastin adhesion molecules: key regulators of neuronal plasticity and synaptic function.

    PubMed

    Beesley, Philip W; Herrera-Molina, Rodrigo; Smalla, Karl-Heinz; Seidenbecher, Constanze

    2014-11-01

    The Neuroplastins Np65 and Np55 are neuronal and synapse-enriched immunoglobulin superfamily molecules that play important roles in a number of key neuronal and synaptic functions including, for Np65, cell adhesion. In this review we focus on the physiological roles of the Neuroplastins in promoting neurite outgrowth, regulating the structure and function of both inhibitory and excitatory synapses in brain, and in neuronal and synaptic plasticity. We discuss the underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms by which the Neuroplastins exert their physiological effects and how these are dependent upon the structural features of Np65 and Np55, which enable them to bind to a diverse range of protein partners. In turn this enables the Neuroplastins to interact with a number of key neuronal signalling cascades. These include: binding to and activation of the fibroblast growth factor receptor; Np65 trans-homophilic binding leading to activation of p38 MAPK and internalization of glutamate (GluR1) receptor subunits; acting as accessory proteins for monocarboxylate transporters, thus affecting neuronal energy supply, and binding to GABAA α1, 2 and 5 subunits, thus regulating the composition and localization of GABAA receptors. An emerging theme is the role of the Neuroplastins in regulating the trafficking and subcellular localization of specific binding partners. We also discuss the involvement of Neuroplastins in a number of pathophysiological conditions, including ischaemia, schizophrenia and breast cancer and the role of a single nucleotide polymorphism in the human Neuroplastin (NPTN) gene locus in impairment of cortical development and cognitive functions. Neuroplastins are neuronal cell adhesion molecules, which induce neurite outgrowth and play important roles in synaptic maturation and plasticity. This review summarizes the functional implications of Neuroplastins for correct synaptic membrane protein localization, neuronal energy supply, expression of LTP and LTD

  12. Spike Timing Regulation on the Millisecond Scale by Distributed Synaptic Plasticity at the Cerebellum Input Stage: A Simulation Study

    PubMed Central

    Garrido, Jesús A.; Ros, Eduardo; D’Angelo, Egidio

    2013-01-01

    The way long-term synaptic plasticity regulates neuronal spike patterns is not completely understood. This issue is especially relevant for the cerebellum, which is endowed with several forms of long-term synaptic plasticity and has been predicted to operate as a timing and a learning machine. Here we have used a computational model to simulate the impact of multiple distributed synaptic weights in the cerebellar granular-layer network. In response to mossy fiber (MF) bursts, synaptic weights at multiple connections played a crucial role to regulate spike number and positioning in granule cells. The weight at MF to granule cell synapses regulated the delay of the first spike and the weight at MF and parallel fiber to Golgi cell synapses regulated the duration of the time-window during which the first-spike could be emitted. Moreover, the weights of synapses controlling Golgi cell activation regulated the intensity of granule cell inhibition and therefore the number of spikes that could be emitted. First-spike timing was regulated with millisecond precision and the number of spikes ranged from zero to three. Interestingly, different combinations of synaptic weights optimized either first-spike timing precision or spike number, efficiently controlling transmission and filtering properties. These results predict that distributed synaptic plasticity regulates the emission of quasi-digital spike patterns on the millisecond time-scale and allows the cerebellar granular layer to flexibly control burst transmission along the MF pathway. PMID:23720626

  13. Homeostatic regulation of synaptic excitability: tonic GABAA receptor currents replace Ih in cortical pyramidal neurons of HCN1 knockout mice

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xiangdong; Shu, Shaofang; Schwartz, Lauren C.; Sun, Chengsan; Kapur, Jaideep; Bayliss, Douglas A.

    2010-01-01

    Homeostatic control of synaptic efficacy is often mediated by dynamic regulation of excitatory synaptic receptors. Here, we report a novel form of homeostatic synaptic plasticity based on regulation of shunt currents that control dendritosomatic information transfer. In cortical pyramidal neurons from wild type mice, HCN1 channels underlie a dendritic hyperpolarization-activated cationic current (Ih) that serves to limit temporal summation of synaptic inputs. In HCN1 knockout mice, as expected, Ih is reduced in pyramidal neurons and its effects on synaptic summation are strongly diminished. Unexpectedly, we found a markedly enhanced bicuculline- and L-655,708-sensitive background GABAA current in these cells that could be attributed to selective up-regulation of GABAA α5 subunit expression in the cortex of HCN1 knockout mice. Strikingly, despite diminished Ih, baseline sub-linear summation of evoked EPSPs was unchanged in pyramidal neurons from HCN1 knockout mice; however, blocking tonic GABAA currents with bicuculline enhanced synaptic summation more strongly in pyramidal cells from HCN1 knockout mice than in those cells from wild type mice. Increasing tonic GABAA receptor conductance in the context of reduced Ih, using computational or pharmacological approaches, restored normal baseline synaptic summation, as observed in neurons from HCN1 knockout mice. These data indicate that up-regulation of α5 subunit-mediated GABAA receptor tonic current compensates quantitatively for loss of dendritic Ih in cortical pyramidal neurons from HCN1 knockout mice to maintain normal synaptic summation; they further imply that dendritosomatic synaptic efficacy is a controlled variable for homeostatic regulation of cortical neuron excitability in vivo. PMID:20164346

  14. Circadian and homeostatic regulation of structural synaptic plasticity in hypocretin neurons.

    PubMed

    Appelbaum, Lior; Wang, Gordon; Yokogawa, Tohei; Skariah, Gemini M; Smith, Stephen J; Mourrain, Philippe; Mignot, Emmanuel

    2010-10-06

    Neurons exhibit rhythmic activity that ultimately affects behavior such as sleep. In living zebrafish larvae, we used time-lapse two-photon imaging of the presynaptic marker synaptophysin in hypocretin/orexin (HCRT) neurons to determine the dynamics of synaptic modifications during the day and night. We observed circadian rhythmicity in synapse number in HCRT axons. This rhythm is regulated primarily by the circadian clock but is also affected by sleep deprivation. Furthermore, NPTX2, a protein implicated in AMPA receptor clustering, modulates circadian synaptic changes. In zebrafish, nptx2b is a rhythmic gene that is mostly expressed in hypothalamic and pineal gland cells. Arrhythmic transgenic nptx2b overexpression (hcrt:NPTX2b) increases synapse number and abolishes rhythmicity in HCRT axons. Finally, hcrt:NPTX2b fish are resistant to the sleep-promoting effects of melatonin. This behavioral effect is consistent with NPTX2b-mediated increased activity of HCRT circuitry. These data provide real-time in vivo evidence of circadian and homeostatic regulation of structural synaptic plasticity.

  15. UBE3A regulates synaptic plasticity and learning and memory by controlling SK2 channel endocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jiandong; Zhu, Guoqi; Liu, Yan; Standley, Steve; Ji, Angela; Tunuguntla, Rashmi; Wang, Yubin; Claus, Chad; Luo, Lyna; Baudry, Michel; Bi, Xiaoning

    2015-01-01

    Summary Gated solely by activity-induced changes in intracellular calcium, small conductance potassium channels (SKs) are critical for a variety of functions in the CNS, from learning and memory to rhythmic activity and sleep. While there is a wealth of information on SK2 gating, kinetics and Ca2+ sensitivity, little is known regarding the regulation of SK2 subcellular localization. We report here that synaptic SK2 levels are regulated by the E3 ubiquitin ligase UBE3A, whose deficiency results in Angelman syndrome and over-expression in increased risk of autistic spectrum disorder. UBE3A directly ubiquitinates SK2 in the C-terminal domain, which facilitates endocytosis. In UBE3A-deficient mice, increased postsynaptic SK2 levels result in decreased NMDA receptor activation, thereby impairing hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity. Impairments in both synaptic plasticity and fear conditioning memory in UBE3A-deficient mice are significantly ameliorated by blocking SK2. These results elucidate a mechanism by which UBE3A directly influences cognitive function. PMID:26166566

  16. Neural circular RNAs are derived from synaptic genes and regulated by development and plasticity.

    PubMed

    You, Xintian; Vlatkovic, Irena; Babic, Ana; Will, Tristan; Epstein, Irina; Tushev, Georgi; Akbalik, Güney; Wang, Mantian; Glock, Caspar; Quedenau, Claudia; Wang, Xi; Hou, Jingyi; Liu, Hongyu; Sun, Wei; Sambandan, Sivakumar; Chen, Tao; Schuman, Erin M; Chen, Wei

    2015-04-01

    Circular RNAs (circRNAs) have re-emerged as an interesting RNA species. Using deep RNA profiling in different mouse tissues, we observed that circRNAs were substantially enriched in brain and a disproportionate fraction of them were derived from host genes that encode synaptic proteins. Moreover, on the basis of separate profiling of the RNAs localized in neuronal cell bodies and neuropil, circRNAs were, on average, more enriched in the neuropil than their host gene mRNA isoforms. Using high-resolution in situ hybridization, we visualized circRNA punctae in the dendrites of neurons. Consistent with the idea that circRNAs might regulate synaptic function during development, many circRNAs changed their abundance abruptly at a time corresponding to synaptogenesis. In addition, following a homeostatic downscaling of neuronal activity many circRNAs exhibited substantial up- or downregulation. Together, our data indicate that brain circRNAs are positioned to respond to and regulate synaptic function.

  17. Regulation of Synaptic Transmission by Presynaptic CaMKII and BK channels

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Zhao-Wen

    2009-01-01

    Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) and the BK channel are enriched at the presynaptic nerve terminal, where CaMKII associates with synaptic vesicles whereas the BK channel colocalizes with voltage-sensitive Ca2+ channels (VSCCs) in the plasma membrane. Mounting evidence suggests that these two proteins play important roles in controlling neurotransmitter release. Presynaptic BK channels primarily serve as a negative regulator of neurotransmitter release. In contrast, presynaptic CaMKII either enhances or inhibits neurotransmitter release and synaptic plasticity depending on experimental/physiological conditions and properties of specific synapses. The different functions of presynaptic CaMKII appear to be mediated by distinct downstream proteins, including the BK channel. PMID:18759010

  18. Thrombin regulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity: implications for health and disease

    PubMed Central

    Ben Shimon, Marina; Lenz, Maximilian; Ikenberg, Benno; Becker, Denise; Shavit Stein, Efrat; Chapman, Joab; Tanne, David; Pick, Chaim G.; Blatt, Ilan; Neufeld, Miri; Vlachos, Andreas; Maggio, Nicola

    2015-01-01

    Thrombin, a serine protease involved in the blood coagulation cascade has been shown to affect neural function following blood-brain barrier breakdown. However, several lines of evidence exist that thrombin is also expressed in the brain under physiological conditions, suggesting an involvement of thrombin in the regulation of normal brain functions. Here, we review ours’ as well as others’ recent work on the role of thrombin in synaptic transmission and plasticity through direct or indirect activation of Protease-Activated Receptor-1 (PAR1). These studies propose a novel role of thrombin in synaptic plasticity, both in physiology as well as in neurological diseases associated with increased brain thrombin/PAR1 levels. PMID:25954157

  19. Differential Regulation of Synaptic Vesicle Tethering and Docking by UNC-18 and TOM-1

    PubMed Central

    Gracheva, Elena O.; Maryon, Ed B.; Berthelot-Grosjean, Martine; Richmond, Janet E.

    2010-01-01

    The assembly of SNARE complexes between syntaxin, SNAP-25 and synaptobrevin is required to prime synaptic vesicles for fusion. Since Munc18 and tomosyn compete for syntaxin interactions, the interplay between these proteins is predicted to be important in regulating synaptic transmission. We explored this possibility, by examining genetic interactions between C. elegans unc-18(Munc18), unc-64(syntaxin) and tom-1(tomosyn). We have previously demonstrated that unc-18 mutants have reduced synaptic transmission, whereas tom-1 mutants exhibit enhanced release. Here we show that the unc-18 mutant release defect is associated with loss of two morphologically distinct vesicle pools; those tethered within 25 nm of the plasma membrane and those docked with the plasma membrane. In contrast, priming defective unc-13 mutants accumulate tethered vesicles, while docked vesicles are greatly reduced, indicating tethering is UNC-18-dependent and occurs in the absence of priming. C. elegans unc-64 mutants phenocopy unc-18 mutants, losing both tethered and docked vesicles, whereas overexpression of open syntaxin preferentially increases vesicle docking, suggesting UNC-18/closed syntaxin interactions are responsible for vesicle tethering. Given the competition between vertebrate tomosyn and Munc18, for syntaxin binding, we hypothesized that C. elegans TOM-1 may inhibit both UNC-18-dependent vesicle targeting steps. Consistent with this hypothesis, tom-1 mutants exhibit enhanced UNC-18 plasma membrane localization and a concomitant increase in both tethered and docked synaptic vesicles. Furthermore, in tom-1;unc-18 double mutants the docked, primed vesicle pool is preferentially rescued relative to unc-18 single mutants. Together these data provide evidence for the differential regulation of two vesicle targeting steps by UNC-18 and TOM-1 through competitive interactions with syntaxin. PMID:21423527

  20. Salvia miltiorrhiza Bunge Blocks Ethanol-Induced Synaptic Dysfunction through Regulation of NMDA Receptor-Dependent Synaptic Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Park, Hye Jin; Lee, Seungheon; Jung, Ji Wook; Lee, Young Choon; Choi, Seong-Min; Kim, Dong Hyun

    2016-01-01

    Consumption of high doses of ethanol can lead to amnesia, which often manifests as a blackout. These blackouts experienced by ethanol consumers may be a major cause of the social problems associated with excess ethanol consumption. However, there is currently no established treatment for preventing these ethanol-induced blackouts. In this study, we tested the ethanol extract of the roots of Salvia miltiorrhiza (SM) for its ability to mitigate ethanol-induced behavioral and synaptic deficits. To test behavioral deficits, an object recognition test was conducted in mouse. In this test, ethanol (1 g/kg, i.p.) impaired object recognition memory, but SM (200 mg/kg) prevented this impairment. To evaluate synaptic deficits, NMDA receptor-mediated excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) and long-term potentiation (LTP) in the mouse hippocampal slices were tested, as they are known to be vulnerable to ethanol and are associated with ethanol-induced amnesia. SM (10 and 100 μg/ml) significantly ameliorated ethanol-induced long-term potentiation and NMDA receptor-mediated EPSP deficits in the hippocampal slices. Therefore, these results suggest that SM prevents ethanol-induced amnesia by protecting the hippocampus from NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity deficits induced by ethanol. PMID:27257009

  1. Sideroflexin 3 is an α-synuclein-dependent mitochondrial protein that regulates synaptic morphology

    PubMed Central

    Amorim, Inês S.; Graham, Laura C.; Carter, Roderick N.; Morton, Nicholas M.; Hammachi, Fella; Kunath, Tilo; Pennetta, Giuseppa; Carpanini, Sarah M.; Manson, Jean C.; Lamont, Douglas J.; Wishart, Thomas M.

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT α-Synuclein plays a central role in Parkinson's disease, where it contributes to the vulnerability of synapses to degeneration. However, the downstream mechanisms through which α-synuclein controls synaptic stability and degeneration are not fully understood. Here, comparative proteomics on synapses isolated from α-synuclein−/− mouse brain identified mitochondrial proteins as primary targets of α-synuclein, revealing 37 mitochondrial proteins not previously linked to α-synuclein or neurodegeneration pathways. Of these, sideroflexin 3 (SFXN3) was found to be a mitochondrial protein localized to the inner mitochondrial membrane. Loss of SFXN3 did not disturb mitochondrial electron transport chain function in mouse synapses, suggesting that its function in mitochondria is likely to be independent of canonical bioenergetic pathways. In contrast, experimental manipulation of SFXN3 levels disrupted synaptic morphology at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction. These results provide novel insights into α-synuclein-dependent pathways, highlighting an important influence on mitochondrial proteins at the synapse, including SFXN3. We also identify SFXN3 as a new mitochondrial protein capable of regulating synaptic morphology in vivo. PMID:28049716

  2. Synaptic augmentation contributes to environment-driven regulation of the aplysia siphon-withdrawal reflex.

    PubMed

    Calin-Jageman, Robert J; Fischer, Thomas M

    2003-12-17

    This research shows that short-term synaptic plasticity can play a critical role in shaping the behavioral response to environmental change. In Aplysia, exposure to turbulent environments produces a stable reduction in the duration of the siphon-withdrawal reflex (SWR) and the responsiveness of siphon motor neurons. Recovery takes >1 min after a brief (10 sec-5 min) exposure but <1 min after a long (10 min) exposure. Here we demonstrate that (1) in-turbulence and post-turbulence phases of regulation depend on different cellular processes and (2) the post-turbulence phase of regulation is mediated by augmentation (AUG), an activity-dependent form of short-term synaptic plasticity. In reduced preparations (tail, siphon, and CNS), we show that treatment with 100 microm d-tubocurarine has no effect on in-turbulence regulation but blocks up to 90% of post-turbulence regulation, indicating that these phases of regulation are mediated by distinct cellular process. We then show that (1) turbulence induces activity in L30 inhibitory interneurons, (2) this activation produces AUG that lasts 1 min after a brief exposure to turbulence, and (3) manipulations that attenuate L30 AUG also attenuate regulation after brief turbulence. We also found that long (10 min) exposures to turbulence do not produce a post-turbulence phase of regulation because L30 activity declines over the course of a long turbulence exposure, leading to the decay of AUG before turbulence offset. Our results demonstrate a specific behavioral function of AUG and show how interactions between cellular processes can confer temporal sensitivity in the network regulation of behavior.

  3. Bidirectional regulation of synaptic transmission by BRAG1/IQSEC2 and its requirement in long-term depression

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Joshua C.; Petersen, Amber; Zhong, Ling; Himelright, Miranda L.; Murphy, Jessica A.; Walikonis, Randall S.; Gerges, Nashaat Z.

    2016-01-01

    Dysfunction of the proteins regulating synaptic function can cause synaptic plasticity imbalance that underlies neurological disorders such as intellectual disability. A study found that four distinct mutations within BRAG1, an Arf-GEF synaptic protein, each led to X-chromosome-linked intellectual disability (XLID). Although the physiological functions of BRAG1 are poorly understood, each of these mutations reduces BRAG1's Arf-GEF activity. Here we show that BRAG1 is required for the activity-dependent removal of AMPA receptors in rat hippocampal pyramidal neurons. Moreover, we show that BRAG1 bidirectionally regulates synaptic transmission. On one hand, BRAG1 is required for the maintenance of synaptic transmission. On the other hand, BRAG1 expression enhances synaptic transmission, independently of BRAG1 Arf-GEF activity or neuronal activity, but dependently on its C-terminus interactions. This study demonstrates a dual role of BRAG1 in synaptic function and highlights the functional relevance of reduced BRAG1 Arf-GEF activity as seen in the XLID-associated human mutations. PMID:27009485

  4. Dendritic Branch Intersections Are Structurally Regulated Targets for Efficient Axonal Wiring and Synaptic Clustering

    PubMed Central

    Pinchas, Monika; Baranes, Danny

    2013-01-01

    Synaptic clustering on dendritic branches enhances plasticity, input integration and neuronal firing. However, the mechanisms guiding axons to cluster synapses at appropriate sites along dendritic branches are poorly understood. We searched for such a mechanism by investigating the structural overlap between dendritic branches and axons in a simplified model of neuronal networks - the hippocampal cell culture. Using newly developed software, we converted images of meshes of overlapping axonal and dendrites into topological maps of intersections, enabling quantitative study of overlapping neuritic geometry at the resolution of single dendritic branch-to-branch and axon-to-branch crossings. Among dendro-dendritic crossing configurations, it was revealed that the orientations through which dendritic branches cross is a regulated attribute. While crossing angle distribution among branches thinner than 1 µm appeared to be random, dendritic branches 1 µm or wider showed a preference for crossing each other at angle ranges of either 50°–70° or 80°–90°. It was then found that the dendro-dendritic crossings themselves, as well as their selective angles, both affected the path of axonal growth. Axons displayed 4 fold stronger tendency to traverse within 2 µm of dendro-dendritic intersections than at farther distances, probably to minimize wiring length. Moreover, almost 70% of the 50°–70° dendro-denritic crossings were traversed by axons from the obtuse angle’s zone, whereas only 15% traversed through the acute angle’s zone. By contrast, axons showed no orientation restriction when traversing 80°–90° crossings. When such traverse behavior was repeated by many axons, they converged in the vicinity of dendro-dendritic intersections, thereby clustering their synaptic connections. Thus, the vicinity of dendritic branch-to-branch crossings appears to be a regulated structure used by axons as a target for efficient wiring and as a preferred site for synaptic

  5. In Vitro Ischemia Triggers a Transcriptional Response to Down-Regulate Synaptic Proteins in Hippocampal Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Fernandes, Joana; Vieira, Marta; Carreto, Laura; Santos, Manuel A. S.; Duarte, Carlos B.; Carvalho, Ana Luísa; Santos, Armanda E.

    2014-01-01

    Transient global cerebral ischemia induces profound changes in the transcriptome of brain cells, which is partially associated with the induction or repression of genes that influence the ischemic response. However, the mechanisms responsible for the selective vulnerability of hippocampal neurons to global ischemia remain to be clarified. To identify molecular changes elicited by ischemic insults, we subjected hippocampal primary cultures to oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD), an in vitro model for global ischemia that resulted in delayed neuronal death with an excitotoxic component. To investigate changes in the transcriptome of hippocampal neurons submitted to OGD, total RNA was extracted at early (7 h) and delayed (24 h) time points after OGD and used in a whole-genome RNA microarray. We observed that at 7 h after OGD there was a general repression of genes, whereas at 24 h there was a general induction of gene expression. Genes related with functions such as transcription and RNA biosynthesis were highly regulated at both periods of incubation after OGD, confirming that the response to ischemia is a dynamic and coordinated process. Our analysis showed that genes for synaptic proteins, such as those encoding for PICK1, GRIP1, TARPγ3, calsyntenin-2/3, SAPAP2 and SNAP-25, were down-regulated after OGD. Additionally, OGD decreased the mRNA and protein expression levels of the GluA1 AMPA receptor subunit as well as the GluN2A and GluN2B subunits of NMDA receptors, but increased the mRNA expression of the GluN3A subunit, thus altering the composition of ionotropic glutamate receptors in hippocampal neurons. Together, our results present the expression profile elicited by in vitro ischemia in hippocampal neurons, and indicate that OGD activates a transcriptional program leading to down-regulation in the expression of genes coding for synaptic proteins, suggesting that the synaptic proteome may change after ischemia. PMID:24960035

  6. Focal adhesion kinase regulates neuronal growth, synaptic plasticity and hippocampus-dependent spatial learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Monje, Francisco J; Kim, Eun-Jung; Pollak, Daniela D; Cabatic, Maureen; Li, Lin; Baston, Arthur; Lubec, Gert

    2012-01-01

    The focal adhesion kinase (FAK) is a non-receptor tyrosine kinase abundantly expressed in the mammalian brain and highly enriched in neuronal growth cones. Inhibitory and facilitatory activities of FAK on neuronal growth have been reported and its role in neuritic outgrowth remains controversial. Unlike other tyrosine kinases, such as the neurotrophin receptors regulating neuronal growth and plasticity, the relevance of FAK for learning and memory in vivo has not been clearly defined yet. A comprehensive study aimed at determining the role of FAK in neuronal growth, neurotransmitter release and synaptic plasticity in hippocampal neurons and in hippocampus-dependent learning and memory was therefore undertaken using the mouse model. Gain- and loss-of-function experiments indicated that FAK is a critical regulator of hippocampal cell morphology. FAK mediated neurotrophin-induced neuritic outgrowth and FAK inhibition affected both miniature excitatory postsynaptic potentials and activity-dependent hippocampal long-term potentiation prompting us to explore the possible role of FAK in spatial learning and memory in vivo. Our data indicate that FAK has a growth-promoting effect, is importantly involved in the regulation of the synaptic function and mediates in vivo hippocampus-dependent spatial learning and memory.

  7. GABA regulates synaptic integration of newly generated neurons in the adult brain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ge, Shaoyu; Goh, Eyleen L. K.; Sailor, Kurt A.; Kitabatake, Yasuji; Ming, Guo-Li; Song, Hongjun

    2006-02-01

    Adult neurogenesis, the birth and integration of new neurons from adult neural stem cells, is a striking form of structural plasticity and highlights the regenerative capacity of the adult mammalian brain. Accumulating evidence suggests that neuronal activity regulates adult neurogenesis and that new neurons contribute to specific brain functions. The mechanism that regulates the integration of newly generated neurons into the pre-existing functional circuitry in the adult brain is unknown. Here we show that newborn granule cells in the dentate gyrus of the adult hippocampus are tonically activated by ambient GABA (γ-aminobutyric acid) before being sequentially innervated by GABA- and glutamate-mediated synaptic inputs. GABA, the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in the adult brain, initially exerts an excitatory action on newborn neurons owing to their high cytoplasmic chloride ion content. Conversion of GABA-induced depolarization (excitation) into hyperpolarization (inhibition) in newborn neurons leads to marked defects in their synapse formation and dendritic development in vivo. Our study identifies an essential role for GABA in the synaptic integration of newly generated neurons in the adult brain, and suggests an unexpected mechanism for activity-dependent regulation of adult neurogenesis, in which newborn neurons may sense neuronal network activity through tonic and phasic GABA activation.

  8. BDNF Interacts with Endocannabinoids to Regulate Cocaine-Induced Synaptic Plasticity in Mouse Midbrain Dopamine Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhong, Peng; Liu, Yong; Hu, Ying; Wang, Tong; Zhao, Yong-ping

    2015-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and endocannabinoids (eCBs) have been individually implicated in behavioral effects of cocaine. The present study examined how BDNF-eCB interaction regulates cocaine-induced synaptic plasticity in the ventral tegmental area and behavioral effects. We report that BDNF and selective tyrosine kinase receptor B (TrkB) agonist 7,8-dihydroxyflavone (DHF) activated the TrkB receptor to facilitate two forms of eCB-mediated synaptic depression, depolarization-induced suppression of inhibition (DSI), and long-term depression (I-LTD) of IPSCs in ventral tegmental area dopamine neurons in mouse midbrain slices. The facilitation appears to be mediated by an increase in eCB production via phospholipase Cγ pathway, but not by an increase in CB1 receptor responsiveness or a decrease in eCB hydrolysis. Using Cre-loxP technology to specifically delete BDNF in dopamine neurons, we showed that eCB-mediated I-LTD, cocaine-induced reduction of GABAergic inhibition, and potentiation of glutamatergic excitation remained intact in wild-type control mice, but were impaired in BDNF conditional knock-out mice. We also showed that cocaine-induced conditioned place preference was attenuated in BDNF conditional knock-out mice, in vivo pretreatments with DHF before place conditioning restored cocaine conditioned place preference in these mice, and the behavioral effect of DHF was blocked by a CB1 receptor antagonist. Together, these results suggest that BDNF in dopamine neurons regulates eCB responses, cocaine-induced synaptic plasticity, and associative learning. PMID:25762688

  9. Regulation of synaptic functions in central nervous system by endocrine hormones and the maintenance of energy homoeostasis.

    PubMed

    Pang, Zhiping P; Han, Weiping

    2012-10-01

    Energy homoeostasis, a co-ordinated balance of food intake and energy expenditure, is regulated by the CNS (central nervous system). The past decade has witnessed significant advances in our understanding of metabolic processes and brain circuitry which responds to a broad range of neural, nutrient and hormonal signals. Accumulating evidence demonstrates altered synaptic plasticity in the CNS in response to hormone signals. Moreover, emerging observations suggest that synaptic plasticity underlies all brain functions, including the physiological regulation of energy homoeostasis, and that impaired synaptic constellation and plasticity may lead to pathological development and conditions. Here, we summarize the current knowledge on the regulation of postsynaptic receptors such as AMPA (α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid), NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate) and GABA (γ-aminobutyric acid) receptors, and the presynaptic components by hormone signals. A detailed understanding of the neurobiological mechanisms by which hormones regulate energy homoeostasis may lead to novel strategies in treating metabolic disorders.

  10. Myosin IIb-dependent Regulation of Actin Dynamics Is Required for N-Methyl-D-aspartate Receptor Trafficking during Synaptic Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Bu, Yunfei; Wang, Ning; Wang, Shaoli; Sheng, Tao; Tian, Tian; Chen, Linlin; Pan, Weiwei; Zhu, Minsheng; Luo, Jianhong; Lu, Wei

    2015-10-16

    N-Methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) synaptic incorporation changes the number of NMDARs at synapses and is thus critical to various NMDAR-dependent brain functions. To date, the molecules involved in NMDAR trafficking and the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Here, we report that myosin IIb is an essential molecule in NMDAR synaptic incorporation during PKC- or θ burst stimulation-induced synaptic plasticity. Moreover, we demonstrate that myosin light chain kinase (MLCK)-dependent actin reorganization contributes to NMDAR trafficking. The findings from additional mutual occlusion experiments demonstrate that PKC and MLCK share a common signaling pathway in NMDAR-mediated synaptic regulation. Because myosin IIb is the primary substrate of MLCK and can regulate actin dynamics during synaptic plasticity, we propose that the MLCK- and myosin IIb-dependent regulation of actin dynamics is required for NMDAR trafficking during synaptic plasticity. This study provides important insights into a mechanical framework for understanding NMDAR trafficking associated with synaptic plasticity.

  11. NgR1: A Tunable Sensor Regulating Memory Formation, Synaptic, and Dendritic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Karlsson, Tobias E.; Smedfors, Gabriella; Brodin, Alvin T. S.; Åberg, Elin; Mattsson, Anna; Högbeck, Isabelle; Wellfelt, Katrin; Josephson, Anna; Brené, Stefan; Olson, Lars

    2016-01-01

    Nogo receptor 1 (NgR1) is expressed in forebrain neurons and mediates nerve growth inhibition in response to Nogo and other ligands. Neuronal activity downregulates NgR1 and the inability to downregulate NgR1 impairs long-term memory. We investigated behavior in a serial behavioral paradigm in mice that overexpress or lack NgR1, finding impaired locomotor behavior and recognition memory in mice lacking NgR1 and impaired sequential spatial learning in NgR1 overexpressing mice. We also investigated a role for NgR1 in drug-mediated sensitization and found that repeated cocaine exposure caused stronger locomotor responses but limited development of stereotypies in NgR1 overexpressing mice. This suggests that NgR1-regulated synaptic plasticity is needed to develop stereotypies. Ex vivo magnetic resonance imaging and diffusion tensor imaging analyses of NgR1 overexpressing brains did not reveal any major alterations. NgR1 overexpression resulted in significantly reduced density of mature spines and dendritic complexity. NgR1 overexpression also altered cocaine-induced effects on spine plasticity. Our results show that NgR1 is a negative regulator of both structural synaptic plasticity and dendritic complexity in a brain region-specific manner, and highlight anterior cingulate cortex as a key area for memory-related plasticity. PMID:26838771

  12. Endogenous modulators of synaptic transmission: cannabinoid regulation in the supraoptic nucleus.

    PubMed

    McDonald, Neil A; Kuzmiski, J Brent; Naderi, Nima; Schwab, Yannick; Pittman, Quentin J

    2008-01-01

    The magnocellular neurons of the hypothalamic supraoptic nucleus (SON) are a major source of both systemic and central release of the neurohypophyseal peptides, oxytocin (OXT) and arginine-vasopressin (AVP). Both OXT and AVP are released from the somatodendritic compartment of magnocellular neurons and act within the SON to modulate the electrophysiological function of these cells. Cannabinoids (CBs) affect hormonal output and the SON may represent a neural substrate through which CBs exert specific physiological and behavioural effects. Dynamic modulation of synaptic inputs is a fundamental mechanism through which neuronal output is controlled. Dendritically released OXT acts on autoreceptors to generate endocannabinoids (eCBs) which modify both excitatory and inhibitory inputs to OXT neurons through actions on presynaptic CB receptors. As such, OXT and eCBs cooperate to shape the electrophysiological properties of magnocellular OXT neurons, regulating the physiological function of this nucleus. Further study of eCB signalling in the SON, including its interaction with AVP neurons, promises to extend our understanding of the synaptic regulation of SON physiological function.

  13. β-Neurexins Control Neural Circuits by Regulating Synaptic Endocannabinoid Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Garret R.; Aoto, Jason; Tabuchi, Katsuhiko; Földy, Csaba; Covy, Jason; Yee, Ada Xin; Wu, Dick; Lee, Sung-Jin; Chen, Lu; Malenka, Robert C.; Südhof, Thomas C.

    2015-01-01

    α- and β-neurexins are presynaptic cell-adhesion molecules implicated in autism and schizophrenia. We find that although β-neurexins are expressed at much lower levels than α-neurexins, conditional knockout of β-neurexins with continued expression of α-neurexins dramatically decreased neurotransmitter release at excitatory synapses in cultured cortical neurons. The β-neurexin knockout phenotype was attenuated by CB1-receptor inhibition which blocks presynaptic endocannabinoid signaling or by 2-arachidonoylglycerol synthesis inhibition which impairs postsynaptic endocannabinoid release. In synapses formed by CA1-region pyramidal neurons onto burst-firing subiculum neurons, presynaptic in vivo knockout of β-neurexins aggravated endocannabinoid-mediated inhibition of synaptic transmission and blocked LTP; presynaptic CB1-receptor antagonists or postsynaptic 2-arachidonoylglycerol synthesis inhibition again reversed this block. Moreover, conditional knockout of β-neurexins in CA1-region neurons impaired contextual fear memories. Thus, our data suggest that presynaptic β-neurexins control synaptic strength in excitatory synapses by regulating postsynaptic 2-arachidonoylglycerol synthesis, revealing an unexpected role for β-neurexins in the endocannabinoid-dependent regulation of neural circuits. PMID:26213384

  14. Electroacupuncture Regulates Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity via miR-134-Mediated LIMK1 Function in Rats with Ischemic Stroke

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Weilin; Wu, Jie; Zhuo, Peiyuan; Lin, Yunjiao; Wang, Lulu; Lin, Ruhui

    2017-01-01

    MircoRNAs (miRs) have been implicated in learning and memory, by regulating LIM domain kinase (LIMK1) to induce synaptic-dendritic plasticity. The study aimed to investigate whether miRNAs/LIMK1 signaling was involved in electroacupuncture- (EA-) mediated synaptic-dendritic plasticity in a rat model of middle cerebral artery occlusion induced cognitive deficit (MICD). Compared to untreatment or non-acupoint-EA treatment, EA at DU20 and DU24 acupoints could shorten escape latency and increase the frequency of crossing platform in Morris water maze test. T2-weighted imaging showed that the MICD rat brain lesions were located in cortex, hippocampus, corpus striatum, and thalamus regions and injured volumes were reduced after EA. Furthermore, we found that the density of dendritic spine and the number of synapses in the hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells were obviously reduced at Day 14 after MICD. However, synaptic-dendritic loss could be rescued after EA. Moreover, the synaptic-dendritic plasticity was associated with increases of the total LIMK1 and phospho-LIMK1 levels in hippocampal CA1 region, wherein EA decreased the expression of miR-134, negatively regulating LIMK1 to enhance synaptic-dendritic plasticity. Therefore, miR-134-mediated LIMK1 was involved in EA-induced hippocampal synaptic plasticity, which served as a contributor to improving learning and memory during the recovery stage of ischemic stroke. PMID:28116173

  15. Mitochondrial reactive oxygen species regulate the strength of inhibitory GABA-mediated synaptic transmission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Accardi, Michael V.; Daniels, Bryan A.; Brown, Patricia M. G. E.; Fritschy, Jean-Marc; Tyagarajan, Shiva K.; Bowie, Derek

    2014-01-01

    Neuronal communication imposes a heavy metabolic burden in maintaining ionic gradients essential for action potential firing and synaptic signalling. Although cellular metabolism is known to regulate excitatory neurotransmission, it is still unclear whether the brain’s energy supply affects inhibitory signalling. Here we show that mitochondrial-derived reactive oxygen species (mROS) regulate the strength of postsynaptic GABAA receptors at inhibitory synapses of cerebellar stellate cells. Inhibition is strengthened through a mechanism that selectively recruits α3-containing GABAA receptors into synapses with no discernible effect on resident α1-containing receptors. Since mROS promotes the emergence of postsynaptic events with unique kinetic properties, we conclude that newly recruited α3-containing GABAA receptors are activated by neurotransmitter released onto discrete postsynaptic sites. Although traditionally associated with oxidative stress in neurodegenerative disease, our data identify mROS as a putative homeostatic signalling molecule coupling cellular metabolism to the strength of inhibitory transmission.

  16. S-palmitoylation regulates AMPA receptors trafficking and function: a novel insight into synaptic regulation and therapeutics

    PubMed Central

    Han, Jun; Wu, Pengfei; Wang, Fang; Chen, Jianguo

    2014-01-01

    Glutamate acting on AMPA-type ionotropic glutamate receptor (AMPAR) mediates the majority of fast excitatory synaptic transmission in the mammalian central nervous system. Dynamic regulation of AMPAR by post-translational modifications is one of the key elements that allow the nervous system to adapt to environment stimulations. S-palmitoylation, an important lipid modification by post-translational addition of a long-chain fatty acid to a cysteine residue, regulates AMPA receptor trafficking, which dynamically affects multiple fundamental brain functions, such as learning and memory. In vivo, S-palmitoylation is controlled by palmitoyl acyl transferases and palmitoyl thioesterases. In this review, we highlight advances in the mechanisms for dynamic AMPA receptors palmitoylation, and discuss how palmitoylation affects AMPA receptors function at synapses in recent years. Pharmacological regulation of S-palmitoylation may serve as a novel therapeutic strategy for neurobiological diseases. PMID:26579419

  17. The conserved SKN-1/Nrf2 stress response pathway regulates synaptic function in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Staab, Trisha A; Griffen, Trevor C; Corcoran, Connor; Evgrafov, Oleg; Knowles, James A; Sieburth, Derek

    2013-03-01

    The Nrf family of transcription factors plays a critical role in mediating adaptive responses to cellular stress and defends against neurodegeneration, aging, and cancer. Here, we report a novel role for the Caenorhabditis elegans Nrf homolog SKN-1 in regulating synaptic transmission at neuromuscular junctions (NMJs). Activation of SKN-1, either by acute pharmacological treatment with the mitochondrial toxin sodium arsenite or by mutations that cause constitutive SKN-1 activation, results in defects in neuromuscular function. Additionally, elimination of the conserved WD40 repeat protein WDR-23, a principal negative regulator of SKN-1, results in impaired locomotion and synaptic vesicle and neuropeptide release from cholinergic motor axons. Mutations that abolish skn-1 activity restore normal neuromuscular function to wdr-23 mutants and animals treated with toxin. We show that negative regulation of SKN-1 by WDR-23 in the intestine, but not at neuromuscular junctions, is necessary and sufficient for proper neuromuscular function. WDR-23 isoforms differentially localize to the outer membranes of mitochondria and to nuclei, and the effects of WDR-23 on neuromuscular function are dependent on its interaction with cullin E3 ubiquitin ligase. Finally, whole-transcriptome RNA sequencing of wdr-23 mutants reveals an increase in the expression of known SKN-1/Nrf2-regulated stress-response genes, as well as neurotransmission genes not previously implicated in SKN-1/Nrf2 responses. Together, our results indicate that SKN-1/Nrf2 activation may be a mechanism through which cellular stress, detected in one tissue, affects cellular function of a distal tissue through endocrine signaling. These results provide insight into how SKN-1/Nrf2 might protect the nervous system from damage in response to oxidative stress.

  18. Synaptic Calcium Regulation in Hair Cells of the Chicken Basilar Papilla

    PubMed Central

    Im, Gi Jung; Moskowitz, Howard S.; Lehar, Mohammed; Hiel, Hakim

    2014-01-01

    Cholinergic inhibition of hair cells occurs by activation of calcium-dependent potassium channels. A near-membrane postsynaptic cistern has been proposed to serve as a store from which calcium is released to supplement influx through the ionotropic ACh receptor. However, the time and voltage dependence of acetylcholine (ACh)-evoked potassium currents reveal a more complex relationship between calcium entry and release from stores. The present work uses voltage steps to regulate calcium influx during the application of ACh to hair cells in the chicken basilar papilla. When calcium influx was terminated at positive membrane potential, the ACh-evoked potassium current decayed exponentially over ∼100 ms. However, at negative membrane potentials, this current exhibited a secondary rise in amplitude that could be eliminated by dihydropyridine block of the voltage-gated calcium channels of the hair cell. Calcium entering through voltage-gated channels may transit through the postsynaptic cistern, since ryanodine and sarcoendoplasmic reticulum calcium-ATPase blockers altered the time course and magnitude of this secondary, voltage-dependent contribution to ACh-evoked potassium current. Serial section electron microscopy showed that efferent and afferent synaptic structures are juxtaposed, supporting the possibility that voltage-gated influx at afferent ribbon synapses influences calcium homeostasis during long-lasting cholinergic inhibition. In contrast, spontaneous postsynaptic currents (“minis”) resulting from stochastic efferent release of ACh were made briefer by ryanodine, supporting the hypothesis that the synaptic cistern serves primarily as a calcium barrier and sink during low-level synaptic activity. Hypolemmal cisterns such as that at the efferent synapse of the hair cell can play a dynamic role in segregating near-membrane calcium for short-term and long-term signaling. PMID:25505321

  19. Synaptic vesicle glycoprotein 2A (SV2A) regulates kindling epileptogenesis via GABAergic neurotransmission

    PubMed Central

    Tokudome, Kentaro; Okumura, Takahiro; Shimizu, Saki; Mashimo, Tomoji; Takizawa, Akiko; Serikawa, Tadao; Terada, Ryo; Ishihara, Shizuka; Kunisawa, Naofumi; Sasa, Masashi; Ohno, Yukihiro

    2016-01-01

    Synaptic vesicle glycoprotein 2A (SV2A) is a prototype synaptic vesicle protein regulating action potential-dependent neurotransmitters release. SV2A also serves as a specific binding site for certain antiepileptics and is implicated in the treatment of epilepsy. Here, to elucidate the role of SV2A in modulating epileptogenesis, we generated a novel rat model (Sv2aL174Q rat) carrying a Sv2a-targeted missense mutation (L174Q) and analyzed its susceptibilities to kindling development. Although animals homozygous for the Sv2aL174Q mutation exhibited normal appearance and development, they are susceptible to pentylenetetrazole (PTZ) seizures. In addition, development of kindling associated with repeated PTZ treatments or focal stimulation of the amygdala was markedly facilitated by the Sv2aL174Q mutation. Neurochemical studies revealed that the Sv2aL174Q mutation specifically reduced depolarization-induced GABA, but not glutamate, release in the hippocampus without affecting basal release or the SV2A expression level in GABAergic neurons. In addition, the Sv2aL174Q mutation selectively reduced the synaptotagmin1 (Syt1) level among the exocytosis-related proteins examined. The present results demonstrate that dysfunction of SV2A due to the Sv2aL174Q mutation impairs the synaptic GABA release by reducing the Syt1 level and facilitates the kindling development, illustrating the crucial role of SV2A-GABA system in modulating kindling epileptogenesis. PMID:27265781

  20. Proteasome Modulates Positive and Negative Translational Regulators in Long-Term Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Chenghai; Bach, Svitlana V.; Haynes, Kathryn A.

    2014-01-01

    Proteolysis by the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway appears to have a complex role in synaptic plasticity, but its various functions remain to be elucidated. Using late phase long-term potentiation (L-LTP) in the hippocampus of the mouse as a model for long-term synaptic plasticity, we previously showed that inhibition of the proteasome enhances induction but blocks maintenance of L-LTP. In this study, we investigated the possible mechanisms by which proteasome inhibition has opposite effects on L-LTP induction and maintenance. Our results show that inhibiting phosphatidyl inositol-3 kinase or blocking the interaction between eukaryotic initiation factors 4E (eIF4E) and 4G (eIF4G) reduces the enhancement of L-LTP induction brought about by proteasome inhibition suggesting interplay between proteolysis and the signaling pathway mediated by mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR). Also, proteasome inhibition leads to accumulation of translational activators in the mTOR pathway such as eIF4E and eukaryotic elongation factor 1A (eEF1A) early during L-LTP causing increased induction. Furthermore, inhibition of the proteasome causes a buildup of translational repressors, such as polyadenylate-binding protein interacting protein 2 (Paip2) and eukaryotic initiation factor 4E-binding protein 2 (4E-BP2), during late stages of L-LTP contributing to the blockade of L-LTP maintenance. Thus, the proteasome plays a critical role in regulating protein synthesis during L-LTP by tightly controlling translation. Our results provide novel mechanistic insights into the interplay between protein degradation and protein synthesis in long-term synaptic plasticity. PMID:24573276

  1. The kinesin-3, unc-104 regulates dendrite morphogenesis and synaptic development in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Kern, Jeannine V; Zhang, Yao V; Kramer, Stella; Brenman, Jay E; Rasse, Tobias M

    2013-09-01

    Kinesin-based transport is important for synaptogenesis, neuroplasticity, and maintaining synaptic function. In an anatomical screen of neurodevelopmental mutants, we identified the exchange of a conserved residue (R561H) in the forkhead-associated domain of the kinesin-3 family member Unc-104/KIF1A as the genetic cause for defects in synaptic terminal- and dendrite morphogenesis. Previous structure-based analysis suggested that the corresponding residue in KIF1A might be involved in stabilizing the activated state of kinesin-3 dimers. Herein we provide the first in vivo evidence for the functional importance of R561. The R561H allele (unc-104(bris)) is not embryonic lethal, which allowed us to investigate consequences of disturbed Unc-104 function on postembryonic synapse development and larval behavior. We demonstrate that Unc-104 regulates the reliable apposition of active zones and postsynaptic densities, possibly by controlling site-specific delivery of its cargo. Next, we identified a role for Unc-104 in restraining neuromuscular junction growth and coordinating dendrite branch morphogenesis, suggesting that Unc-104 is also involved in dendritic transport. Mutations in KIF1A/unc-104 have been associated with hereditary spastic paraplegia and hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy type 2. However, we did not observe synapse retraction or dystonic posterior paralysis. Overall, our study demonstrates the specificity of defects caused by selective impairments of distinct molecular motors and highlights the critical importance of Unc-104 for the maturation of neuronal structures during embryonic development, larval synaptic terminal outgrowth, and dendrite morphogenesis.

  2. The Kinesin-3, Unc-104 Regulates Dendrite Morphogenesis and Synaptic Development in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Kern, Jeannine V.; Zhang, Yao V.; Kramer, Stella; Brenman, Jay E.

    2013-01-01

    Kinesin-based transport is important for synaptogenesis, neuroplasticity, and maintaining synaptic function. In an anatomical screen of neurodevelopmental mutants, we identified the exchange of a conserved residue (R561H) in the forkhead-associated domain of the kinesin-3 family member Unc-104/KIF1A as the genetic cause for defects in synaptic terminal- and dendrite morphogenesis. Previous structure-based analysis suggested that the corresponding residue in KIF1A might be involved in stabilizing the activated state of kinesin-3 dimers. Herein we provide the first in vivo evidence for the functional importance of R561. The R561H allele (unc-104bris) is not embryonic lethal, which allowed us to investigate consequences of disturbed Unc-104 function on postembryonic synapse development and larval behavior. We demonstrate that Unc-104 regulates the reliable apposition of active zones and postsynaptic densities, possibly by controlling site-specific delivery of its cargo. Next, we identified a role for Unc-104 in restraining neuromuscular junction growth and coordinating dendrite branch morphogenesis, suggesting that Unc-104 is also involved in dendritic transport. Mutations in KIF1A/unc-104 have been associated with hereditary spastic paraplegia and hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy type 2. However, we did not observe synapse retraction or dystonic posterior paralysis. Overall, our study demonstrates the specificity of defects caused by selective impairments of distinct molecular motors and highlights the critical importance of Unc-104 for the maturation of neuronal structures during embryonic development, larval synaptic terminal outgrowth, and dendrite morphogenesis. PMID:23770702

  3. Activity-Dependent p25 Generation Regulates Synaptic Plasticity and Aβ-Induced Cognitive Impairment

    PubMed Central

    Seo, Jinsoo; Giusti-Rodríguez, Paola; Zhou, Ying; Rudenko, Andrii; Cho, Sukhee; Ota, Kristie T.; Park, Christine; Patzke, Holger; Madabhushi, Ram; Pan, Ling; Mungenast, Alison E.; Guan, Ji-Song; Delalle, Ivana; Tsai, Li-Huei

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 regulates numerous neuronal functions with its activator, p35. Under neurotoxic conditions, p35 undergoes proteolytic cleavage to liberate p25, which has been implicated in various neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we show that p25 is generated following neuronal activity under physiological conditions in a GluN2B- and CaMKIIα-dependent manner. Moreover, we developed a knockin mouse model in which endogenous p35 is replaced with a calpain-resistant mutant p35 (Δp35KI) to prevent p25 generation. The Δp35KI mice exhibit impaired long-term depression and defective memory extinction, likely mediated through persistent GluA1 phosphorylation at Ser845. Finally, crossing the Δp35KI mice with the 5XFAD mouse model of Alzheimer's disease (AD) resulted in an amelioration of β-amyloid (Aβ)-induced synaptic depression and cognitive impairment. Together, these results reveal a physiological role of p25 production in synaptic plasticity and memory and provide new insights into the function of p25 in Aβ-associated neurotoxicity and AD-like pathology. PMID:24725413

  4. Exposure to Cocaine Regulates Inhibitory Synaptic Transmission in the Nucleus Accumbens

    PubMed Central

    Otaka, Mami; Ishikawa, Masago; Lee, Brian R.; Liu, Lei; Neumann, Peter A.; Cui, Ranji; Huang, Yanhua; Schlüter, Oliver M.; Dong, Yan

    2013-01-01

    Medium spiny neurons (MSNs) within the nucleus accumbens shell (NAc) function to gate and prioritize emotional/motivational arousals for behavioral output. The neuronal output NAc MSNs is mainly determined by the integration of membrane excitability and excitatory/inhibitory synaptic inputs. Whereas cocaine-induced alterations at excitatory synapses and membrane excitability have been extensively examined, the overall functional output of NAc MSNs following cocaine exposure still poorly defined because little is known about whether inhibitory synaptic input to these neurons is affected by cocaine. Here, our results demonstrate multidimensional alterations at inhibitory synapses in NAc neurons following cocaine self-administration in rats. Specifically, the amplitude of miniature (m) inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) was decreased after 21-d withdrawal from 5-d cocaine self-administration. Upon re-exposure to cocaine after 21-day withdrawal, whereas the amplitude of mIPSCs remained down-regulated, the frequency became significantly higher. Furthermore, the reversal potential of IPSCs, which was not significantly altered during withdrawal, became more hyperpolarized upon cocaine re-exposure. Moreover, the relative weight of excitatory and inhibitory inputs to NAc MSNs was significantly decreased after 1-d cocaine withdrawal, increased after 21-d withdrawal, and returned to the basal level upon cocaine re-exposure after 21-d withdrawal. These results, taken together with previous results showing cocaine-induced adaptations at excitatory synapses and intrinsic membrane excitability of NAc MSNs, may provide a relatively thorough picture of the functional state of NAc MSNs following cocaine exposure. PMID:23595733

  5. PLPP/CIN regulates bidirectional synaptic plasticity via GluN2A interaction with postsynaptic proteins

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Ji-Eun; Kim, Yeon-Joo; Lee, Duk-Shin; Kim, Ji Yang; Ko, Ah-Reum; Hyun, Hye-Won; Kim, Min Ju; Kang, Tae-Cheon

    2016-01-01

    Dendritic spines are dynamic structures whose efficacies and morphologies are modulated by activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. The actin cytoskeleton plays an important role in stabilization and structural modification of spines. However, the regulatory mechanism by which it alters the plasticity threshold remains elusive. Here, we demonstrate the role of pyridoxal-5′-phosphate phosphatase/chronophin (PLPP/CIN), one of the cofilin-mediated F-actin regulators, in modulating synaptic plasticity in vivo. PLPP/CIN transgenic (Tg) mice had immature spines with small heads, while PLPP/CIN knockout (KO) mice had gigantic spines. Furthermore, PLPP/CIN Tg mice exhibited enhanced synaptic plasticity, but KO mice showed abnormal synaptic plasticity. The PLPP/CIN-induced alterations in synaptic plasticity were consistent with the acquisition and the recall capacity of spatial learning. PLPP/CIN also enhanced N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (GluN) functionality by regulating the coupling of GluN2A with interacting proteins, particularly postsynaptic density-95 (PSD95). Therefore, these results suggest that PLPP/CIN may be an important factor for regulating the plasticity threshold. PMID:27212638

  6. SALM5 trans-synaptically interacts with LAR-RPTPs in a splicing-dependent manner to regulate synapse development

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Yeonsoo; Nam, Jungyong; Whitcomb, Daniel J.; Song, Yoo Sung; Kim, Doyoun; Jeon, Sangmin; Um, Ji Won; Lee, Seong-Gyu; Woo, Jooyeon; Kwon, Seok-Kyu; Li, Yan; Mah, Won; Kim, Ho Min; Ko, Jaewon; Cho, Kwangwook; Kim, Eunjoon

    2016-01-01

    Synaptogenic adhesion molecules play critical roles in synapse formation. SALM5/Lrfn5, a SALM/Lrfn family adhesion molecule implicated in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and schizophrenia, induces presynaptic differentiation in contacting axons, but its presynaptic ligand remains unknown. We found that SALM5 interacts with the Ig domains of LAR family receptor protein tyrosine phosphatases (LAR-RPTPs; LAR, PTPδ, and PTPσ). These interactions are strongly inhibited by the splice insert B in the Ig domain region of LAR-RPTPs, and mediate SALM5-dependent presynaptic differentiation in contacting axons. In addition, SALM5 regulates AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission through mechanisms involving the interaction of postsynaptic SALM5 with presynaptic LAR-RPTPs. These results suggest that postsynaptic SALM5 promotes synapse development by trans-synaptically interacting with presynaptic LAR-RPTPs and is important for the regulation of excitatory synaptic strength. PMID:27225731

  7. Alternative functions of core cell cycle regulators in neuronal migration, neuronal maturation, and synaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Frank, Christopher L.; Tsai, Li-Huei

    2009-01-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated that boundaries separating a cycling cell from a post-mitotic neuron are not as concrete as expected. Novel and unique physiological functions in neurons have been ascribed for proteins fundamentally required for cell cycle progression and control. These “core” cell cycle regulators serve diverse post-mitotic functions that span various developmental stages of a neuron, including neuronal migration, axonal elongation, axon pruning, dendrite morphogenesis, and synaptic maturation and plasticity. In this review, we detail the non-proliferative post-mitotic roles that these cell cycle proteins have recently been reported to play, the significance of their expression in neurons, mechanistic insight when available, and future prospects. PMID:19447088

  8. Synaptic Clustering of PSD-95 Is Regulated by c-Abl through Tyrosine Phosphorylation

    PubMed Central

    de Arce, Karen Perez; Varela-Nallar, Lorena; Farias, Olivia; Cifuentes, Alejandra; Bull, Paulina; Couch, Brian A.; Koleske, Anthony J.; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C.; Alvarez, Alejandra R.

    2010-01-01

    The c-Abl tyrosine kinase is present in mouse brain synapses, but its precise synaptic function is unknown. We found that c-Abl levels in the rat hippocampus increase postnatally, with expression peaking at the first postnatal week. In 14 d in vitro hippocampal neuron cultures, c-Abl localizes primarily to the postsynaptic compartment, in which it colocalizes with the postsynaptic scaffold protein postsynaptic density protein-95 (PSD-95) in apposition to presynaptic markers. c-Abl associates with PSD-95, and chemical or genetic inhibition of c-Abl kinase activity reduces PSD-95 tyrosine phosphorylation, leading to reduced PSD-95 clustering and reduced synapses in treated neurons. c-Abl can phosphorylate PSD-95 on tyrosine 533, and mutation of this residue reduces the ability of PSD-95 to cluster at postsynaptic sites. Our results indicate that c-Abl regulates synapse formation by mediating tyrosine phosphorylation and clustering of PSD-95. PMID:20220006

  9. Dynamic regulation of midbrain dopamine neuron activity: intrinsic, synaptic, and plasticity mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Morikawa, H; Paladini, C A

    2011-12-15

    Although the roles of dopaminergic signaling in learning and behavior are well established, it is not fully understood how the activity of dopaminergic neurons is dynamically regulated under different conditions in a constantly changing environment. Dopamine neurons must integrate sensory, motor, and cognitive information online to inform the organism to pursue outcomes with the highest reward probability. In this article, we provide an overview of recent advances on the intrinsic, extrinsic (i.e., synaptic), and plasticity mechanisms controlling dopamine neuron activity, mostly focusing on mechanistic studies conducted using ex vivo brain slice preparations. We also hope to highlight some unresolved questions regarding information processing that takes place at dopamine neurons, thereby stimulating further investigations at different levels of analysis.

  10. FMRP regulates neurotransmitter release and synaptic information transmission by modulating action potential duration via BK channels.

    PubMed

    Deng, Pan-Yue; Rotman, Ziv; Blundon, Jay A; Cho, Yongcheol; Cui, Jianmin; Cavalli, Valeria; Zakharenko, Stanislav S; Klyachko, Vitaly A

    2013-02-20

    Loss of FMRP causes fragile X syndrome (FXS), but the physiological functions of FMRP remain highly debatable. Here we show that FMRP regulates neurotransmitter release in CA3 pyramidal neurons by modulating action potential (AP) duration. Loss of FMRP leads to excessive AP broadening during repetitive activity, enhanced presynaptic calcium influx, and elevated neurotransmitter release. The AP broadening defects caused by FMRP loss have a cell-autonomous presynaptic origin and can be acutely rescued in postnatal neurons. These presynaptic actions of FMRP are translation independent and are mediated selectively by BK channels via interaction of FMRP with BK channel's regulatory β4 subunits. Information-theoretical analysis demonstrates that loss of these FMRP functions causes marked dysregulation of synaptic information transmission. FMRP-dependent AP broadening is not limited to the hippocampus, but also occurs in cortical pyramidal neurons. Our results thus suggest major translation-independent presynaptic functions of FMRP that may have important implications for understanding FXS neuropathology.

  11. Dynamic Regulation of Midbrain Dopamine Neuron Activity: Intrinsic, Synaptic, and Plasticity Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Morikawa, Hitoshi; Paladini, Carlos A.

    2011-01-01

    Although the roles of dopaminergic signaling in learning and behavior are well established, it is not fully understood how the activity of dopaminergic neurons is dynamically regulated under different conditions in a constantly changing environment. Dopamine neurons must integrate sensory, motor, and cognitive information online to inform the organism to pursue outcomes with the highest reward probability. In this article, we provide an overview of recent advances on the intrinsic, extrinsic (i.e., synaptic), and plasticity mechanisms controlling dopamine neuron activity, mostly focusing on mechanistic studies conducted using ex vivo brain slice preparations. We also hope to highlight some unresolved questions regarding information processing that takes place at dopamine neurons, thereby stimulating further investigations at different levels of analysis. PMID:21872647

  12. Fragile X mental retardation protein regulates synaptic and behavioral plasticity to repeated cocaine administration.

    PubMed

    Smith, Laura N; Jedynak, Jakub P; Fontenot, Miles R; Hale, Carly F; Dietz, Karen C; Taniguchi, Makoto; Thomas, Feba S; Zirlin, Benjamin C; Birnbaum, Shari G; Huber, Kimberly M; Thomas, Mark J; Cowan, Christopher W

    2014-05-07

    Repeated cocaine exposure causes persistent, maladaptive alterations in brain and behavior, and hope for effective therapeutics lies in understanding these processes. We describe here an essential role for fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP), an RNA-binding protein and regulator of dendritic protein synthesis, in cocaine conditioned place preference, behavioral sensitization, and motor stereotypy. Cocaine reward deficits in FMRP-deficient mice stem from elevated mGluR5 (or GRM5) function, similar to a subset of fragile X symptoms, and do not extend to natural reward. We find that FMRP functions in the adult nucleus accumbens (NAc), a critical addiction-related brain region, to mediate behavioral sensitization but not cocaine reward. FMRP-deficient mice also exhibit several abnormalities in NAc medium spiny neurons, including reduced presynaptic function and premature changes in dendritic morphology and glutamatergic neurotransmission following repeated cocaine treatment. Together, our findings reveal FMRP as a critical mediator of cocaine-induced behavioral and synaptic plasticity.

  13. Regulation of synaptic activity by snapin-mediated endolysosomal transport and sorting

    PubMed Central

    Di Giovanni, Jerome; Sheng, Zu-Hang

    2015-01-01

    Recycling synaptic vesicles (SVs) transit through early endosomal sorting stations, which raises a fundamental question: are SVs sorted toward endolysosomal pathways? Here, we used snapin mutants as tools to assess how endolysosomal sorting and trafficking impact presynaptic activity in wild-type and snapin−/− neurons. Snapin acts as a dynein adaptor that mediates the retrograde transport of late endosomes (LEs) and interacts with dysbindin, a subunit of the endosomal sorting complex BLOC-1. Expressing dynein-binding defective snapin mutants induced SV accumulation at presynaptic terminals, mimicking the snapin−/− phenotype. Conversely, over-expressing snapin reduced SV pool size by enhancing SV trafficking to the endolysosomal pathway. Using a SV-targeted Ca2+ sensor, we demonstrate that snapin–dysbindin interaction regulates SV positional priming through BLOC-1/AP-3-dependent sorting. Our study reveals a bipartite regulation of presynaptic activity by endolysosomal trafficking and sorting: LE transport regulates SV pool size, and BLOC-1/AP-3-dependent sorting fine-tunes the Ca2+ sensitivity of SV release. Therefore, our study provides new mechanistic insights into the maintenance and regulation of SV pool size and synchronized SV fusion through snapin-mediated LE trafficking and endosomal sorting. PMID:26108535

  14. Regulation of synaptic activity by snapin-mediated endolysosomal transport and sorting.

    PubMed

    Di Giovanni, Jerome; Sheng, Zu-Hang

    2015-08-04

    Recycling synaptic vesicles (SVs) transit through early endosomal sorting stations, which raises a fundamental question: are SVs sorted toward endolysosomal pathways? Here, we used snapin mutants as tools to assess how endolysosomal sorting and trafficking impact presynaptic activity in wild-type and snapin(-/-) neurons. Snapin acts as a dynein adaptor that mediates the retrograde transport of late endosomes (LEs) and interacts with dysbindin, a subunit of the endosomal sorting complex BLOC-1. Expressing dynein-binding defective snapin mutants induced SV accumulation at presynaptic terminals, mimicking the snapin(-/-) phenotype. Conversely, over-expressing snapin reduced SV pool size by enhancing SV trafficking to the endolysosomal pathway. Using a SV-targeted Ca(2+) sensor, we demonstrate that snapin-dysbindin interaction regulates SV positional priming through BLOC-1/AP-3-dependent sorting. Our study reveals a bipartite regulation of presynaptic activity by endolysosomal trafficking and sorting: LE transport regulates SV pool size, and BLOC-1/AP-3-dependent sorting fine-tunes the Ca(2+) sensitivity of SV release. Therefore, our study provides new mechanistic insights into the maintenance and regulation of SV pool size and synchronized SV fusion through snapin-mediated LE trafficking and endosomal sorting.

  15. Fast retrieval and autonomous regulation of single spontaneously recycling synaptic vesicles.

    PubMed

    Leitz, Jeremy; Kavalali, Ege T

    2014-11-21

    Presynaptic terminals release neurotransmitters spontaneously in a manner that can be regulated by Ca(2+). However, the mechanisms underlying this regulation are poorly understood because the inherent stochasticity and low probability of spontaneous fusion events has curtailed their visualization at individual release sites. Here, using pH-sensitive optical probes targeted to synaptic vesicles, we visualized single spontaneous fusion events and found that they are retrieved extremely rapidly with faster re-acidification kinetics than their action potential-evoked counterparts. These fusion events were coupled to postsynaptic NMDA receptor-driven Ca(2+) signals, and at elevated Ca(2+) concentrations there was an increase in the number of vesicles that would undergo fusion. Furthermore, spontaneous vesicle fusion propensity in a synapse was Ca(2+)-dependent but regulated autonomously: independent of evoked fusion probability at the same synapse. Taken together, these results expand classical quantal analysis to incorporate endocytic and exocytic phases of single fusion events and uncover autonomous regulation of spontaneous fusion.

  16. Help

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tollefson, Ann

    2009-01-01

    Planning to start or expand a K-8 critical language program? Looking for support in doing so? There "may" be help at the federal level for great ideas and strong programs. While there have been various pools of federal dollars available to support world language programs for a number of years, the federal government's interest in…

  17. Blockade of Astrocytic Calcineurin/NFAT Signaling Helps to Normalize Hippocampal Synaptic Function and Plasticity in a Rat Model of Traumatic Brain Injury

    PubMed Central

    Furman, Jennifer L.; Sompol, Pradoldej; Kraner, Susan D.; Pleiss, Melanie M.; Putman, Esther J.; Dunkerson, Jacob; Mohmmad Abdul, Hafiz; Roberts, Kelly N.; Scheff, Stephen W.

    2016-01-01

    -dependent activation of the transcription factor NFAT (Nuclear Factor of Activated T cells) selectively, we have shown that activated astrocytes contribute to neural dysfunction in animal models characterized by progressive/chronic neuropathology. Here, we show that the suppression of astrocytic calcineurin/NFATs helps to protect synaptic function and plasticity in an animal model in which pathology arises from a single traumatic brain injury. The findings suggest that at least some astrocyte functions impair recovery after trauma and may provide druggable targets for treating victims of acute nervous system injury. PMID:26843634

  18. Disrupted Dentate Granule Cell Chloride Regulation Enhances Synaptic Excitability during Development of Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Pathak, Hemal R.; Weissinger, Florian; Terunuma, Miho; Carlson, Gregory C.; Hsu, Fu-Chun; Moss, Stephen J.; Coulter, Douglas A.

    2008-01-01

    GABAA receptor-mediated inhibition depends on the maintenance of intracellular Cl− concentration ([Cl−]in ) at low levels. In neurons in the developing CNS, [Cl−]in is elevated, EGABA is depolarizing, and GABA consequently is excitatory. Depolarizing GABAergic synaptic responses may be recapitulated in various neuropathological conditions, including epilepsy. In the present study, rat hippocampal dentate granule cells were recorded using gramicidin perforated patch techniques at varying times (1–60 d) after an epileptogenic injury, pilocarpine-induced status epilepticus (STEP). In normal, non-epileptic animals, these strongly inhibited dentate granule cells act as a gate, regulating hippocampal excitation, controlling seizure initiation and/or propagation. For 2 weeks after STEP, we found that EGABA was positively shifted in granule cells. This shift in EGABA altered synaptic integration, increased granule cell excitability, and resulted in compromised “gate” function of the dentate gyrus. EGABA recovered to control values at longer latencies post-STEP (2–8 weeks), when animals had developed epilepsy. During this period of shifted EGABA, expression of the Cl− extruding K+/Cl− cotransporter, KCC2 was decreased. Application of the KCC2 blocker, furosemide, to control neurons mimicked EGABA shifts evident in granule cells post-STEP. Furthermore, post-STEP and furosemide effects interacted occlusively, both on EGABA in granule cells, and on gatekeeper function of the dentate gyrus. This suggests a shared mechanism, reduced KCC2 function. These findings demonstrate that decreased expression of KCC2 persists for weeks after an epileptogenic injury, reducing inhibitory efficacy and enhancing dentate granule cell excitability. This pathophysiological process may constitute a significant mechanism linking injury to the subsequent development of epilepsy. PMID:18094240

  19. Regulation of synaptic Pumilio function by an aggregation-prone domain

    PubMed Central

    Salazar, Anna M.; Silverman, Edward J.; Menon, Kaushiki P.; Zinn, Kai

    2010-01-01

    We identified Pumilio (Pum), a Drosophila translational repressor, in a computational search for metazoan proteins whose activities might be regulated by assembly into ordered aggregates. The search algorithm was based on evolutionary sequence conservation patterns observed for yeast prion proteins, which contain aggregation-prone glutamine/asparagine (Q/N)-rich domains attached to functional domains of normal amino acid composition. We examined aggregation of Pum and its nematode ortholog PUF-9 by expression in yeast. A domain of Pum containing the Q/N-rich sequence, denoted as NQ1, the entire Pum N-terminus, and the complete PUF-9 protein localize to macroscopic aggregates (foci) in yeast. NQ1 and PUF-9 can generate the yeast Pin+ trait, which is transmitted by a heritable aggregate. NQ1 also assembles into amyloid fibrils in vitro. In Drosophila, Pum regulates postsynaptic translation at neuromuscular junctions (NMJs). To assess whether NQ1 affects synaptic Pum activity in vivo, we expressed it in muscles. We found that it negatively regulates endogenous Pum, producing gene dosage-dependent pum loss-of-function NMJ phenotypes. NQ1 coexpression also suppresses lethality and NMJ phenotypes caused by overexpression of Pum in muscles. The Q/N block of NQ1 is required for these phenotypic effects. Negative regulation of Pum by NQ1 might be explained by formation of inactive aggregates, but we have been unable to demonstrate that NQ1 aggregates in Drosophila. NQ1 could also regulate Pum by a “dominant-negative” effect, in which it would block Q/N-mediated interactions of Pum with itself or with cofactors required for translational repression. PMID:20071514

  20. Electrical nerve stimulation and the relief of chronic pain through regulation of the accumulation of synaptic Arc protein.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yue-peng; Liu, Su

    2013-08-01

    Electrical nerve stimulation (ENS) is used in clinical settings for the treatment of chronic pain, but the mechanism underlying its effects remains unknown. ENS has been found to mimic neural activity, inducing the accumulation of Arc in synapses. Activity-dependent synaptic accumulation of Arc protein has been shown to reduce synaptic strength by promoting endocytosis of the AMPA receptors in the synaptic membrane. These receptors play a decisive role in central sensitization, which is one of the main mechanisms underlying chronic pain. It is here hypothesized that ENS induces Arc expression in synapses, where Arc promotes endocytosis of membrane AMPARs that are up-regulated during chronic pain. High frequency and high intensity are characteristics of ENS, which may be effective in the treatment of chronic pain. Stimulation-site of ENS may also influence the outcome of ENS.

  1. Expression of the synaptic exocytosis-regulating molecule complexin 2 in taste buds and its participation in peripheral taste transduction.

    PubMed

    Kurokawa, Azusa; Narukawa, Masataka; Ohmoto, Makoto; Yoshimoto, Joto; Abe, Keiko; Misaka, Takumi

    2015-06-01

    Taste information from type III taste cells to gustatory neurons is thought to be transmitted via synapses. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying taste transduction through this pathway have not been fully elucidated. In this study, to identify molecules that participate in synaptic taste transduction, we investigated whether complexins (Cplxs), which play roles in regulating membrane fusion in synaptic vesicle exocytosis, were expressed in taste bud cells. Among four Cplx isoforms, strong expression of Cplx2 mRNA was detected in type III taste cells. To investigate the function of CPLX2 in taste transduction, we observed taste responses in CPLX2-knockout mice. When assessed with electrophysiological and behavioral assays, taste responses to some sour stimuli in CPLX2-knockout mice were significantly lower than those in wild-type mice. These results suggested that CPLX2 participated in synaptic taste transduction from type III taste cells to gustatory neurons. A part of taste information is thought to be transmitted via synapses. However, the molecular mechanisms have not been fully elucidated. To identify molecules that participate in synaptic taste transduction, we investigated complexins (Cplxs) expression in taste bud cells. Strong expression of Cplx2 mRNA was detected in taste bud cells. Furthermore, taste responses to some sour stimuli in CPLX2- knockout mice were significantly lower than those in wild-type mice. These suggested that CPLX2 participated in synaptic taste transduction.

  2. Calcium-Activated Chloride Channels (CaCCs) Regulate Action Potential and Synaptic Response in Hippocampal Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Wendy C.; Xiao, Shaohua; Huang, Fen; Harfe, Brian D.; Jan, Yuh Nung; Jan, Lily Yeh

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY Central neurons respond to synaptic inputs from other neurons by generating synaptic potentials. Once the summated synaptic potentials reach threshold for action potential firing, the signal propagates leading to transmitter release at the synapse. The calcium influx accompanying such signaling opens calcium-activated ion channels for feedback regulation. Here we report a novel mechanism for modulating hippocampal neuronal signaling that involves calcium-activated chloride channels (CaCCs). We present the first evidence that CaCCs reside in hippocampal neurons and are in close proximity of calcium channels and NMDA receptors to shorten action potential duration, dampen excitatory synaptic potentials, impede temporal summation, and raise the threshold for action potential generation by synaptic potential. Having recently identified TMEM16A and TMEM16B as CaCCs, we further show that TMEM16B but not TMEM16A is important for hippocampal CaCC, laying the groundwork for deciphering the dynamic CaCC modulation of neuronal signaling in neurons important for learning and memory. PMID:22500639

  3. Molecular Machines Regulating the Release Probability of Synaptic Vesicles at the Active Zone

    PubMed Central

    Körber, Christoph; Kuner, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    The fusion of synaptic vesicles (SVs) with the plasma membrane of the active zone (AZ) upon arrival of an action potential (AP) at the presynaptic compartment is a tightly regulated probabilistic process crucial for information transfer. The probability of a SV to release its transmitter content in response to an AP, termed release probability (Pr), is highly diverse both at the level of entire synapses and individual SVs at a given synapse. Differences in Pr exist between different types of synapses, between synapses of the same type, synapses originating from the same axon and even between different SV subpopulations within the same presynaptic terminal. The Pr of SVs at the AZ is set by a complex interplay of different presynaptic properties including the availability of release-ready SVs, the location of the SVs relative to the voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) at the AZ, the magnitude of calcium influx upon arrival of the AP, the buffering of calcium ions as well as the identity and sensitivity of the calcium sensor. These properties are not only interconnected, but can also be regulated dynamically to match the requirements of activity patterns mediated by the synapse. Here, we review recent advances in identifying molecules and molecular machines taking part in the determination of vesicular Pr at the AZ. PMID:26973506

  4. A Bcl-xL-Drp1 complex regulates synaptic vesicle membrane dynamics during endocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Li, Hongmei; Alavian, Kambiz N.; Lazrove, Emma; Mehta, Nabil; Jones, Adrienne; Zhang, Ping; Licznerski, Pawel; Graham, Morven; Uo, Takuma; Guo, Junhua; Rahner, Christoph; Duman, Ronald S.; Morrison, Richard S.; Jonas, Elizabeth A.

    2013-01-01

    Following exocytosis, the rate of recovery of neurotransmitter release is determined by vesicle retrieval from the plasma membrane and by recruitment of vesicles from reserve pools within the synapse, the latter of which is dependent on mitochondrial ATP. The Bcl-2 family protein Bcl-xL, in addition to its role in cell death, regulates neurotransmitter release and recovery in part by increasing ATP availability from mitochondria. We now find, however, that, Bcl-xL directly regulates endocytotic vesicle retrieval in hippocampal neurons through protein/protein interaction with components of the clathrin complex. Our evidence suggests that, during synaptic stimulation, Bcl-xL translocates to clathrin-coated pits in a calmodulin-dependent manner and forms a complex of proteins with the GTPase Drp1, Mff and clathrin. Depletion of Drp1 produces misformed endocytotic vesicles. Mutagenesis studies suggest that formation of the Bcl-xL-Drp1 complex is necessary for the enhanced rate of vesicle endocytosis produced by Bcl-xL, thus providing a mechanism for presynaptic plasticity. PMID:23792689

  5. Synaptic Release at Mammalian Bipolar Cell Terminals

    PubMed Central

    Wan, Qun-Fang; Heidelberger, Ruth

    2011-01-01

    Bipolar cells play a vital role in the transfer of visual information across the vertebrate retina. The synaptic output of these neurons is regulated by factors that are extrinsic and intrinsic. Relatively little is known about the intrinsic factors that regulate neurotransmitter exocytosis. Much of what we know about intrinsic presynaptic mechanisms that regulate glutamate release has come from the study of the unusually large and accessible synaptic terminal of the goldfish rod-dominant bipolar cell, the Mb1 bipolar cell. However, over the past several years, examination of presynaptic mechanisms governing neurotransmitter release has been extended to the mammalian rod bipolar cell. In this review, we discuss the recent advances in our understanding of synaptic vesicle dynamics and neurotransmitter release in rodent rod bipolar cells and consider how these properties help shape the synaptic output of the mammalian retina. PMID:21272392

  6. ANKS1B Gene Product AIDA-1 Controls Hippocampal Synaptic Transmission by Regulating GluN2B Subunit Localization.

    PubMed

    Tindi, Jaafar O; Chávez, Andrés E; Cvejic, Svetlana; Calvo-Ochoa, Erika; Castillo, Pablo E; Jordan, Bryen A

    2015-06-17

    NMDA receptors (NMDARs) are key mediators of glutamatergic transmission and synaptic plasticity, and their dysregulation has been linked to diverse neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative disorders. While normal NMDAR function requires regulated expression and trafficking of its different subunits, the molecular mechanisms underlying these processes are not fully understood. Here we report that the amyloid precursor protein intracellular domain associated-1 protein (AIDA-1), which associates with NMDARs and is encoded by ANKS1B, a gene recently linked to schizophrenia, regulates synaptic NMDAR subunit composition. Forebrain-specific AIDA-1 conditional knock-out (cKO) mice exhibit reduced GluN2B-mediated and increased GluN2A-mediated synaptic transmission, and biochemical analyses show AIDA-1 cKO mice have low GluN2B and high GluN2A protein levels at isolated hippocampal synaptic junctions compared with controls. These results are corroborated by immunocytochemical and electrophysiological analyses in primary neuronal cultures following acute lentiviral shRNA-mediated knockdown of AIDA-1. Moreover, hippocampal NMDAR-dependent but not metabotropic glutamate receptor-dependent plasticity is impaired in AIDA-1 cKO mice, further supporting a role for AIDA-1 in synaptic NMDAR function. We also demonstrate that AIDA-1 preferentially associates with GluN2B and with the adaptor protein Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent serine protein kinase and kinesin KIF17, which regulate the transport of GluN2B-containing NMDARs from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) to synapses. Consistent with this function, GluN2B accumulates in ER-enriched fractions in AIDA-1 cKO mice. These findings suggest that AIDA-1 regulates NMDAR subunit composition at synapses by facilitating transport of GluN2B from the ER to synapses, which is critical for NMDAR plasticity. Our work provides an explanation for how AIDA-1 dysfunction might contribute to neuropsychiatric conditions, such as schizophrenia.

  7. Neuromodulation and metamodulation by adenosine: Impact and subtleties upon synaptic plasticity regulation.

    PubMed

    Sebastião, Ana M; Ribeiro, Joaquim A

    2015-09-24

    Synaptic plasticity mechanisms, i.e. the sequence of events that underlies persistent changes in synaptic strength as a consequence of transient alteration in neuronal firing, are greatly influenced by the 'chemical atmosphere' of the synapses, that is to say by the presence of molecules at the synaptic cleft able to fine-tune the activity of other molecules more directly related to plasticity. One of those fine tuners is adenosine, known for a long time as an ubiquitous neuromodulator and metamodulator and recognized early as influencing synaptic plasticity. In this review we will refer to the mechanisms that adenosine can use to affect plasticity, emphasizing aspects of the neurobiology of adenosine relevant to its ability to control synaptic functioning. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Brain and Memory.

  8. Synaptic strength is bidirectionally controlled by opposing activity-dependent regulation of Nedd4-1 and USP8.

    PubMed

    Scudder, Samantha L; Goo, Marisa S; Cartier, Anna E; Molteni, Alice; Schwarz, Lindsay A; Wright, Rebecca; Patrick, Gentry N

    2014-12-10

    The trafficking of AMPA receptors (AMPARs) to and from synapses is crucial for synaptic plasticity. Previous work has demonstrated that AMPARs undergo activity-dependent ubiquitination by the E3 ubiquitin ligase Nedd4-1, which promotes their internalization and degradation in lysosomes. Here, we define the molecular mechanisms involved in ubiquitination and deubiquitination of AMPARs. We report that Nedd4-1 is rapidly redistributed to dendritic spines in response to AMPAR activation and not in response to NMDA receptor (NMDAR) activation in cultured rat neurons. In contrast, NMDAR activation directly antagonizes Nedd4-1 function by promoting the deubiquitination of AMPARs. We show that NMDAR activation causes the rapid dephosphorylation and activation of the deubiquitinating enzyme (DUB) USP8. Surface AMPAR levels and synaptic strength are inversely regulated by Nedd4-1 and USP8. Strikingly, we show that homeostatic downscaling of synaptic strength is accompanied by an increase and decrease in Nedd4-1 and USP8 protein levels, respectively. Furthermore, we show that Nedd4-1 is required for homeostatic loss of surface AMPARs and downscaling of synaptic strength. This study provides the first mechanistic evidence for rapid and opposing activity-dependent control of a ubiquitin ligase and DUB at mammalian CNS synapses. We propose that the dynamic regulation of these opposing forces is critical in maintaining synapses and scaling them during homeostatic plasticity.

  9. Morphine Regulated Synaptic Networks Revealed by Integrated Proteomics and Network Analysis.

    PubMed

    Stockton, Steven D; Gomes, Ivone; Liu, Tong; Moraje, Chandrakala; Hipólito, Lucia; Jones, Matthew R; Ma'ayan, Avi; Morón, Jose A; Li, Hong; Devi, Lakshmi A

    2015-10-01

    Despite its efficacy, the use of morphine for the treatment of chronic pain remains limited because of the rapid development of tolerance, dependence and ultimately addiction. These undesired effects are thought to be because of alterations in synaptic transmission and neuroplasticity within the reward circuitry including the striatum. In this study we used subcellular fractionation and quantitative proteomics combined with computational approaches to investigate the morphine-induced protein profile changes at the striatal postsynaptic density. Over 2,600 proteins were identified by mass spectrometry analysis of subcellular fractions enriched in postsynaptic density associated proteins from saline or morphine-treated striata. Among these, the levels of 34 proteins were differentially altered in response to morphine. These include proteins involved in G-protein coupled receptor signaling, regulation of transcription and translation, chaperones, and protein degradation pathways. The altered expression levels of several of these proteins was validated by Western blotting analysis. Using Genes2Fans software suite we connected the differentially expressed proteins with proteins identified within the known background protein-protein interaction network. This led to the generation of a network consisting of 116 proteins with 40 significant intermediates. To validate this, we confirmed the presence of three proteins predicted to be significant intermediates: caspase-3, receptor-interacting serine/threonine protein kinase 3 and NEDD4 (an E3-ubiquitin ligase identified as a neural precursor cell expressed developmentally down-regulated protein 4). Because this morphine-regulated network predicted alterations in proteasomal degradation, we examined the global ubiquitination state of postsynaptic density proteins and found it to be substantially altered. Together, these findings suggest a role for protein degradation and for the ubiquitin/proteasomal system in the etiology of

  10. Morphine Regulated Synaptic Networks Revealed by Integrated Proteomics and Network Analysis*

    PubMed Central

    Stockton, Steven D.; Gomes, Ivone; Liu, Tong; Moraje, Chandrakala; Hipólito, Lucia; Jones, Matthew R.; Ma'ayan, Avi; Morón, Jose A.; Li, Hong; Devi, Lakshmi A.

    2015-01-01

    Despite its efficacy, the use of morphine for the treatment of chronic pain remains limited because of the rapid development of tolerance, dependence and ultimately addiction. These undesired effects are thought to be because of alterations in synaptic transmission and neuroplasticity within the reward circuitry including the striatum. In this study we used subcellular fractionation and quantitative proteomics combined with computational approaches to investigate the morphine-induced protein profile changes at the striatal postsynaptic density. Over 2,600 proteins were identified by mass spectrometry analysis of subcellular fractions enriched in postsynaptic density associated proteins from saline or morphine-treated striata. Among these, the levels of 34 proteins were differentially altered in response to morphine. These include proteins involved in G-protein coupled receptor signaling, regulation of transcription and translation, chaperones, and protein degradation pathways. The altered expression levels of several of these proteins was validated by Western blotting analysis. Using Genes2Fans software suite we connected the differentially expressed proteins with proteins identified within the known background protein-protein interaction network. This led to the generation of a network consisting of 116 proteins with 40 significant intermediates. To validate this, we confirmed the presence of three proteins predicted to be significant intermediates: caspase-3, receptor-interacting serine/threonine protein kinase 3 and NEDD4 (an E3-ubiquitin ligase identified as a neural precursor cell expressed developmentally down-regulated protein 4). Because this morphine-regulated network predicted alterations in proteasomal degradation, we examined the global ubiquitination state of postsynaptic density proteins and found it to be substantially altered. Together, these findings suggest a role for protein degradation and for the ubiquitin/proteasomal system in the etiology of

  11. Presynaptic DLG regulates synaptic function through the localization of voltage-activated Ca2+ Channels

    PubMed Central

    Astorga, César; Jorquera, Ramón A.; Ramírez, Mauricio; Kohler, Andrés; López, Estefanía; Delgado, Ricardo; Córdova, Alex; Olguín, Patricio; Sierralta, Jimena

    2016-01-01

    The DLG-MAGUK subfamily of proteins plays a role on the recycling and clustering of glutamate receptors (GLUR) at the postsynaptic density. discs-large1 (dlg) is the only DLG-MAGUK gene in Drosophila and originates two main products, DLGA and DLGS97 which differ by the presence of an L27 domain. Combining electrophysiology, immunostaining and genetic manipulation at the pre and postsynaptic compartments we study the DLG contribution to the basal synaptic-function at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction. Our results reveal a specific function of DLGS97 in the regulation of the size of GLUR fields and their subunit composition. Strikingly the absence of any of DLG proteins at the presynaptic terminal disrupts the clustering and localization of the calcium channel DmCa1A subunit (Cacophony), decreases the action potential-evoked release probability and alters short-term plasticity. Our results show for the first time a crucial role of DLG proteins in the presynaptic function in vivo. PMID:27573697

  12. FMRP Regulates Neurotransmitter Release and Synaptic Information Transmission by Modulating Action Potential Duration via BK channels

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Pan-Yue; Rotman, Ziv; Blundon, Jay A.; Cho, Yongcheol; Cui, Jianmin; Cavalli, Valeria; Zakharenko, Stanislav S.; Klyachko, Vitaly A.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Loss of FMRP causes Fragile X syndrome (FXS), but the physiological functions of FMRP remain highly debatable. Here we show that FMRP regulates neurotransmitter release in CA3 pyramidal neurons by modulating action potential (AP) duration. Loss of FMRP leads to excessive AP broadening during repetitive activity, enhanced presynaptic calcium influx and elevated neurotransmitter release. The AP broadening defects caused by FMRP loss have a cell-autonomous presynaptic origin and can be acutely rescued in postnatal neurons. These presynaptic actions of FMRP are translation-independent and are mediated selectively by BK channels via interaction of FMRP with BK channel’s regulatory β4 subunits. Information-theoretical analysis demonstrates that loss of these FMRP functions causes marked dysregulation of synaptic information transmission. FMRP-dependent AP broadening is not limited to the hippocampus, but also occurs in cortical pyramidal neurons. Our results thus suggest major translation-independent presynaptic functions of FMRP that may have important implications for understanding FXS neuropathology. PMID:23439122

  13. Aerobic exercise regulates Rho/cofilin pathways to rescue synaptic loss in aged rats

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yan; Zhao, Li; Gu, Boya; Cai, Jiajia; Lv, Yuanyuan; Yu, Laikang

    2017-01-01

    Purpose The role of exercise to prevent or reverse aging-induced cognitive decline has been widely reported. This neuroprotection is associated with changes in the synaptic structure plasticity. However, the mechanisms of exercise-induced synaptic plasticity in the aging brain are still unclear. Thus, the aim of the present study is to investigate the aging-related alterations of Rho-GTPase and the modulatory influences of exercise training. Methods Young and old rats were used in this study. Old rats were subjected to different schedules of aerobic exercise (12 m/min, 60 min/d, 3d/w or 5d/w) or kept sedentary for 12 w. After 12 w of aerobic exercise, the synapse density in the cortex and hippocampus was detected with immunofluorescent staining using synaptophysin as a marker. The total protein levels of RhoA, Rac1, Cdc42 and cofilin in the cortex and hippocampus were detected with Western Blot. The activities of RhoA, Rac1 and Cdc42 were determined using a pull down assay. Results We found that synapse loss occurred in aging rats. However, the change of expression and activity of RhoA, Rac1 and Cdc42 was different in the cortex and hippocampus. In the cortex, the expression and activity of Rac1 and Cdc42 was greatly increased with aging, whereas there were no changes in the expression and activity of RhoA. In the hippocampus, the expression and activity of Rac1 and Cdc42 was greatly decreased and there were no changes in the expression and activity of RhoA. As a major downstream substrate of the Rho GTPase family, the increased expression of cofilin was only observed in the cortex. High frequency exercise ameliorated all aging-related changes in the cortex and hippocampus. Conclusions These data suggest that aerobic exercise reverses synapse loss in the cortex and hippocampus in aging rats, which might be related to the regulation of Rho GTPases. PMID:28152068

  14. N-terminal SAP97 isoforms differentially regulate synaptic structure and postsynaptic surface pools of AMPA receptors.

    PubMed

    Goodman, Lucy; Baddeley, David; Ambroziak, Wojciech; Waites, Clarissa L; Garner, Craig C; Soeller, Christian; Montgomery, Johanna M

    2017-02-28

    The location and density of postsynaptic α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptors is controlled by scaffolding proteins within the postsynaptic density (PSD). SAP97 is a PSD protein with two N-terminal isoforms, α and β, that have opposing effects on synaptic strength thought to result from differential targeting of AMPA receptors into distinct synaptic versus extrasynaptic locations, respectively. In this study, we have applied dSTORM super resolution imaging in order to localize the synaptic and extrasynaptic pools of AMPA receptors in neurons expressing α or βSAP97. Unexpectedly, we observed that both α and βSAP97 enhanced the localization of AMPA receptors at synapses. However, this occurred via different mechanisms: αSAP97 increased PSD size and consequently the number of receptor binding sites, whilst βSAP97 increased synaptic receptor cluster size and surface AMPA receptor density at the PSD edge and surrounding perisynaptic sites without changing PSD size. αSAP97 also strongly enlarged presynaptic active zone protein clusters, consistent with both presynaptic and postsynaptic enhancement underlying the previously observed αSAP97-induced increase in AMPA receptor-mediated currents. In contrast, βSAP97-expressing neurons increased the proportion of immature filopodia that express higher levels of AMPA receptors, decreased the number of functional presynaptic terminals, and also reduced the size of the dendritic tree and delayed the maturation of mushroom spines. Our data reveal that SAP97 isoforms can specifically regulate surface AMPA receptor nanodomain clusters, with βSAP97 increasing extrasynaptic receptor domains at peri-synaptic and filopodial sites. Moreover, βSAP97 negatively regulates synaptic maturation both structurally and functionally. These data support diverging presynaptic and postsynaptic roles of SAP97 N-terminal isoforms in synapse maturation and plasticity. As numerous splice isoforms exist in

  15. N-cadherin regulates molecular organization of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic circuits in adult hippocampus in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Nikitczuk, Jessica S.; Patil, Shekhar B.; Matikainen-Ankney, Bridget A.; Scarpa, Joseph; Shapiro, Matthew L.

    2016-01-01

    N-cadherin and β-catenin form a transsynaptic adhesion complex required for spine and synapse development. In adulthood, N-cadherin mediates persistent synaptic plasticity, but whether the role of N-cadherin at mature synapses is similar to that at developing synapses is unclear. To address this, we conditionally ablated N-cadherin from excitatory forebrain synapses in mice starting in late postnatal life and examined hippocampal structure and function in adulthood. In the absence of N-cadherin, β-catenin levels were reduced, but numbers of excitatory synapses were unchanged, and there was no impact on number or shape of dendrites or spines. However, the composition of synaptic molecules was altered. Levels of GluA1 and its scaffolding protein PSD95 were diminished and the density of immunolabeled puncta was decreased, without effects on other glutamate receptors and their scaffolding proteins. Additionally, loss of N-cadherin at excitatory synapses triggered increases in the density of markers for inhibitory synapses and decreased severity of hippocampal seizures. Finally, adult mutant mice were profoundly impaired in hippocampal-dependent memory for spatial episodes. These results demonstrate a novel function for the N-cadherin/β-catenin complex in regulating ionotropic receptor composition of excitatory synapses, an appropriate balance of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic proteins and the maintenance of neural circuitry necessary to generate flexible yet persistent cognitive and synaptic function. PMID:24753442

  16. N-cadherin regulates molecular organization of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic circuits in adult hippocampus in vivo.

    PubMed

    Nikitczuk, Jessica S; Patil, Shekhar B; Matikainen-Ankney, Bridget A; Scarpa, Joseph; Shapiro, Matthew L; Benson, Deanna L; Huntley, George W

    2014-08-01

    N-Cadherin and β-catenin form a transsynaptic adhesion complex required for spine and synapse development. In adulthood, N-cadherin mediates persistent synaptic plasticity, but whether the role of N-cadherin at mature synapses is similar to that at developing synapses is unclear. To address this, we conditionally ablated N-cadherin from excitatory forebrain synapses in mice starting in late postnatal life and examined hippocampal structure and function in adulthood. In the absence of N-cadherin, β-catenin levels were reduced, but numbers of excitatory synapses were unchanged, and there was no impact on number or shape of dendrites or spines. However, the composition of synaptic molecules was altered. Levels of GluA1 and its scaffolding protein PSD95 were diminished and the density of immunolabeled puncta was decreased, without effects on other glutamate receptors and their scaffolding proteins. Additionally, loss of N-cadherin at excitatory synapses triggered increases in the density of markers for inhibitory synapses and decreased severity of hippocampal seizures. Finally, adult mutant mice were profoundly impaired in hippocampal-dependent memory for spatial episodes. These results demonstrate a novel function for the N-cadherin/β-catenin complex in regulating ionotropic receptor composition of excitatory synapses, an appropriate balance of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic proteins and the maintenance of neural circuitry necessary to generate flexible yet persistent cognitive and synaptic function.

  17. GRASP1 Regulates Synaptic Plasticity and Learning through Endosomal Recycling of AMPA Receptors.

    PubMed

    Chiu, Shu-Ling; Diering, Graham Hugh; Ye, Bing; Takamiya, Kogo; Chen, Chih-Ming; Jiang, Yuwu; Niranjan, Tejasvi; Schwartz, Charles E; Wang, Tao; Huganir, Richard L

    2017-03-22

    Learning depends on experience-dependent modification of synaptic efficacy and neuronal connectivity in the brain. We provide direct evidence for physiological roles of the recycling endosome protein GRASP1 in glutamatergic synapse function and animal behavior. Mice lacking GRASP1 showed abnormal excitatory synapse number, synaptic plasticity, and hippocampal-dependent learning and memory due to a failure in learning-induced synaptic AMPAR incorporation. We identified two GRASP1 point mutations from intellectual disability (ID) patients that showed convergent disruptive effects on AMPAR recycling and glutamate uncaging-induced structural and functional plasticity. Wild-type GRASP1, but not ID mutants, rescued spine loss in hippocampal CA1 neurons in Grasp1 knockout mice. Together, these results demonstrate a requirement for normal recycling endosome function in AMPAR-dependent synaptic function and neuronal connectivity in vivo, and suggest a potential role for GRASP1 in the pathophysiology of human cognitive disorders.

  18. RGS2 determines short-term synaptic plasticity in hippocampal neurons by regulating Gi/o-mediated inhibition of presynaptic Ca2+ channels.

    PubMed

    Han, Jing; Mark, Melanie D; Li, Xiang; Xie, Mian; Waka, Sayumi; Rettig, Jens; Herlitze, Stefan

    2006-09-07

    RGS2, one of the small members of the regulator of G protein signaling (RGS) family, is highly expressed in brain and regulates G(i/o) as well as G(q)-coupled receptor pathways. RGS2 modulates anxiety, aggression, and blood pressure in mice, suggesting that RGS2 regulates synaptic circuits underlying animal physiology and behavior. How RGS2 in brain influences synaptic activity is unknown. We therefore analyzed the synaptic function of RGS2 in hippocampal neurons by comparing electrophysiological recordings from RGS2 knockout and wild-type mice. Our study provides a general mechanism of the action of the RGS family containing RGS2 by demonstrating that RGS2 increases synaptic vesicle release by downregulating the G(i/o)-mediated presynaptic Ca(2+) channel inhibition and therefore provides an explanation of how regulation of RGS2 expression can modulate the function of neuronal circuits underlying behavior.

  19. Extracellular signal-regulated kinase signaling in the ventral tegmental area mediates cocaine-induced synaptic plasticity and rewarding effects.

    PubMed

    Pan, Bin; Zhong, Peng; Sun, Dalong; Liu, Qing-song

    2011-08-03

    Drugs of abuse such as cocaine induce long-term synaptic plasticity in the reward circuitry, which underlies the formation of drug-associated memories and addictive behavior. We reported previously that repeated cocaine exposure in vivo facilitates long-term potentiation (LTP) in dopamine neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA) by reducing the strength of GABAergic inhibition and that endocannabinoid-dependent long-term depression at inhibitory synapses (I-LTD) constitutes a mechanism for cocaine-induced reduction of GABAergic inhibition. The present study investigated the downstream signaling mechanisms and functional consequences of I-LTD in the VTA in the rat. Extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) signaling has been implicated in long-term synaptic plasticity, associative learning, and drug addiction. We tested the hypothesis that VTA ERK activity is required for I-LTD and cocaine-induced long-term synaptic plasticity and behavioral effects. We show that the activation of receptors required for I-LTD increased ERK1/2 phosphorylation and inhibitors of ERK activation blocked I-LTD. We further demonstrate that ERK mediates cocaine-induced reduction of GABAergic inhibition and facilitation of LTP induction. Finally, we show that cocaine conditioned place preference (CPP) training (15 mg/kg; four pairings) increased ERK1/2 phosphorylation in the VTA, while bilateral intra-VTA injections of a CB(1) antagonist or an inhibitor of ERK activation attenuated ERK1/2 phosphorylation and the acquisition, but not the expression, of CPP to cocaine. Our study has identified the CB(1) and ERK signaling cascade as a key mediator of several forms of cocaine-induced synaptic plasticity and provided evidence linking long-term synaptic plasticity in the VTA to rewarding effects of cocaine.

  20. Regulation of synaptic structure by ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase L1.

    PubMed

    Cartier, Anna E; Djakovic, Stevan N; Salehi, Afshin; Wilson, Scott M; Masliah, Eliezer; Patrick, Gentry N

    2009-06-17

    Ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase L1 (UCH-L1) is a deubiquitinating enzyme that is selectively and abundantly expressed in the brain, and its activity is required for normal synaptic function. Here, we show that UCH-L1 functions in maintaining normal synaptic structure in hippocampal neurons. We found that UCH-L1 activity is rapidly upregulated by NMDA receptor activation, which leads to an increase in the levels of free monomeric ubiquitin. Conversely, pharmacological inhibition of UCH-L1 significantly reduces monomeric ubiquitin levels and causes dramatic alterations in synaptic protein distribution and spine morphology. Inhibition of UCH-L1 activity increases spine size while decreasing spine density. Furthermore, there is a concomitant increase in the size of presynaptic and postsynaptic protein clusters. Interestingly, however, ectopic expression of ubiquitin restores normal synaptic structure in UCH-L1-inhibited neurons. These findings point to a significant role of UCH-L1 in synaptic remodeling, most likely by modulating free monomeric ubiquitin levels in an activity-dependent manner.

  1. Regulation of synaptic transmission at the Caenorhabditis elegans M4 neuromuscular junction by an antagonistic relationship between two calcium channels.

    PubMed

    Steciuk, Mark; Cheong, Mi; Waite, Christopher; You, Young-Jai; Avery, Leon

    2014-11-04

    In wild-type Caenorhabditis elegans, the synapse from motor neuron M4 to pharyngeal terminal bulb (TB) muscles is silent, and the muscles are instead excited by gap junction connections from adjacent muscles. An eat-5 innexin mutant lacking this electrical connection has few TB contractions and is unable to grow well on certain foods. We showed previously that this defect can be overcome by activation of the M4 → TB synapse. To identify genes that negatively regulate synaptic transmission, we isolated new suppressors of eat-5. To our surprise, these suppressors included null mutations in NPQR-type calcium channel subunit genes unc-2 and unc-36. Our results are consistent with the hypothesis that Ca(2+) entry through the NPQR-type channel inhibits synaptic transmission by activating the calcium-activated K(+) channel SLO-1, thus antagonizing the EGL-19 L-type calcium channel.

  2. Kismet Positively Regulates Glutamate Receptor Localization and Synaptic Transmission at the Drosophila Neuromuscular Junction

    PubMed Central

    Ghosh, Rupa; Vegesna, Srikar; Safi, Ramia; Bao, Hong; Zhang, Bing; Marenda, Daniel R.; Liebl, Faith L. W.

    2014-01-01

    The Drosophila neuromuscular junction (NMJ) is a glutamatergic synapse that is structurally and functionally similar to mammalian glutamatergic synapses. These synapses can, as a result of changes in activity, alter the strength of their connections via processes that require chromatin remodeling and changes in gene expression. The chromodomain helicase DNA binding (CHD) protein, Kismet (Kis), is expressed in both motor neuron nuclei and postsynaptic muscle nuclei of the Drosophila larvae. Here, we show that Kis is important for motor neuron synaptic morphology, the localization and clustering of postsynaptic glutamate receptors, larval motor behavior, and synaptic transmission. Our data suggest that Kis is part of the machinery that modulates the development and function of the NMJ. Kis is the homolog to human CHD7, which is mutated in CHARGE syndrome. Thus, our data suggest novel avenues of investigation for synaptic defects associated with CHARGE syndrome. PMID:25412171

  3. Emotion Talk: Helping Caregivers Facilitate Emotion Understanding and Emotion Regulation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brinton, Bonnie; Fujiki, Martin

    2011-01-01

    This article focuses on two aspects of emotional intelligence, emotion understanding and emotion regulation. These abilities are important because of their impact on social communication and the way in which they influence a child's access to knowledge. Caregivers who engage their children in emotion talk may strengthen the ability of their…

  4. Synaptic excitation is regulated by the postsynaptic dSK channel at the Drosophila larval NMJ.

    PubMed

    Gertner, Daniel M; Desai, Sunil; Lnenicka, Gregory A

    2014-06-15

    In the mammalian central nervous system, the postsynaptic small-conductance Ca(2+)-dependent K(+) (SK) channel has been shown to reduce postsynaptic depolarization and limit Ca(2+) influx through N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors. To examine further the role of the postsynaptic SK channel in synaptic transmission, we studied its action at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ). Repetitive synaptic stimulation produced an increase in postsynaptic membrane conductance leading to depression of excitatory postsynaptic potential amplitude and hyperpolarization of the resting membrane potential (RMP). This reduction in synaptic excitation was due to the postsynaptic Drosophila SK (dSK) channel; synaptic depression, increased membrane conductance and RMP hyperpolarization were reduced in dSK mutants or after expressing a Ca(2+) buffer in the muscle. Ca(2+) entering at the postsynaptic membrane was sufficient to activate dSK channels based upon studies in which the muscle membrane was voltage clamped to prevent opening voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels. Increasing external Ca(2+) produced an increase in resting membrane conductance and RMP that was not seen in dSK mutants or after adding the glutamate-receptor blocker philanthotoxin. Thus it appeared that dSK channels were also activated by spontaneous transmitter release and played a role in setting membrane conductance and RMP. In mammals, dephosphorylation by protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A) increased the Ca(2+) sensitivity of the SK channel; PP2A appeared to increase the sensitivity of the dSK channel since PP2A inhibitors reduced activation of the dSK channel by evoked synaptic activity or increased external Ca(2+). It is proposed that spontaneous and evoked transmitter release activate the postsynaptic dSK channel to limit synaptic excitation and stabilize synapses.

  5. Synaptic excitation is regulated by the postsynaptic dSK channel at the Drosophila larval NMJ

    PubMed Central

    Gertner, Daniel M.; Desai, Sunil

    2014-01-01

    In the mammalian central nervous system, the postsynaptic small-conductance Ca2+-dependent K+ (SK) channel has been shown to reduce postsynaptic depolarization and limit Ca2+ influx through N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors. To examine further the role of the postsynaptic SK channel in synaptic transmission, we studied its action at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ). Repetitive synaptic stimulation produced an increase in postsynaptic membrane conductance leading to depression of excitatory postsynaptic potential amplitude and hyperpolarization of the resting membrane potential (RMP). This reduction in synaptic excitation was due to the postsynaptic Drosophila SK (dSK) channel; synaptic depression, increased membrane conductance and RMP hyperpolarization were reduced in dSK mutants or after expressing a Ca2+ buffer in the muscle. Ca2+ entering at the postsynaptic membrane was sufficient to activate dSK channels based upon studies in which the muscle membrane was voltage clamped to prevent opening voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels. Increasing external Ca2+ produced an increase in resting membrane conductance and RMP that was not seen in dSK mutants or after adding the glutamate-receptor blocker philanthotoxin. Thus it appeared that dSK channels were also activated by spontaneous transmitter release and played a role in setting membrane conductance and RMP. In mammals, dephosphorylation by protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A) increased the Ca2+ sensitivity of the SK channel; PP2A appeared to increase the sensitivity of the dSK channel since PP2A inhibitors reduced activation of the dSK channel by evoked synaptic activity or increased external Ca2+. It is proposed that spontaneous and evoked transmitter release activate the postsynaptic dSK channel to limit synaptic excitation and stabilize synapses. PMID:24671529

  6. Neurexin-1 regulates sleep and synaptic plasticity in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Larkin, Aoife; Chen, Ming-Yu; Kirszenblat, Leonie; Reinhard, Judith; van Swinderen, Bruno; Claudianos, Charles

    2015-10-01

    Neurexins are cell adhesion molecules that are important for synaptic plasticity and homeostasis, although links to sleep have not yet been investigated. We examined the effects of neurexin-1 perturbation on sleep in Drosophila, showing that neurexin-1 nulls displayed fragmented sleep and altered circadian rhythm. Conversely, the over-expression of neurexin-1 could increase and consolidate night-time sleep. This was not solely due to developmental effects as it could be induced acutely in adulthood, and was coupled with evidence of synaptic growth. The timing of over-expression could differentially impact sleep patterns, with specific night-time effects. These results show that neurexin-1 was dynamically involved in synaptic plasticity and sleep in Drosophila. Neurexin-1 and a number of its binding partners have been repeatedly associated with mental health disorders, including autism spectrum disorders, schizophrenia and Tourette syndrome, all of which are also linked to altered sleep patterns. How and when plasticity-related proteins such as neurexin-1 function during sleep can provide vital information on the interaction between synaptic homeostasis and sleep, paving the way for more informed treatments of human disorders.

  7. Impaired attention and synaptic senescence of the prefrontal cortex involves redox regulation of NMDA receptors.

    PubMed

    Guidi, Michael; Kumar, Ashok; Foster, Thomas C

    2015-03-04

    Young (3-6 months) and middle-age (10-14 months) rats were trained on the five-choice serial reaction time task. Attention and executive function deficits were apparent in middle-age animals observed as a decrease in choice accuracy, increase in omissions, and increased response latency. The behavioral differences were not due to alterations in sensorimotor function or a diminished motivational state. Electrophysiological characterization of synaptic transmission in slices from the mPFC indicated an age-related decrease in glutamatergic transmission. In particular, a robust decrease in N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR)-mediated synaptic responses in the mPFC was correlated with several measures of attention. The decrease in NMDAR function was due in part to an altered redox state as bath application of the reducing agent, dithiothreitol, increased the NMDAR component of the synaptic response to a greater extent in middle-age animals. Together with previous work indicating that redox state mediates senescent physiology in the hippocampus, the results indicate that redox changes contribute to senescent synaptic function in vulnerable brain regions involved in age-related cognitive decline.

  8. Neuroligin-1 regulates excitatory synaptic transmission, LTP and EPSP-spike coupling in the dentate gyrus in vivo.

    PubMed

    Jedlicka, Peter; Vnencak, Matej; Krueger, Dilja D; Jungenitz, Tassilo; Brose, Nils; Schwarzacher, Stephan W

    2015-01-01

    Neuroligins are transmembrane cell adhesion proteins with a key role in the regulation of excitatory and inhibitory synapses. Based on previous in vitro and ex vivo studies, neuroligin-1 (NL1) has been suggested to play a selective role in the function of glutamatergic synapses. However, the role of NL1 has not yet been investigated in the brain of live animals. We studied the effects of NL1-deficiency on synaptic transmission in the hippocampal dentate gyrus using field potential recordings evoked by perforant path stimulation in urethane-anesthetized NL1 knockout (KO) mice. We report that in NL1 KOs the activation of glutamatergic perforant path granule cell inputs resulted in reduced synaptic responses. In addition, NL1 KOs displayed impairment in long-term potentiation. Furthermore, field EPSP-population spike (E-S) coupling was greater in NL1 KO than WT mice and paired-pulse inhibition was reduced, indicating a compensatory rise of excitability in NL1 KO granule cells. Consistent with changes in excitatory transmission, NL1 KOs showed a significant reduction in hippocampal synaptosomal expression levels of the AMPA receptor subunit GluA2 and NMDA receptor subunits GluN1, GluN2A and GluN2B. Taken together, we provide first evidence that NL1 is essential for normal excitatory transmission and long-term synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus of intact animals. Our data provide insights into synaptic and circuit mechanisms of neuropsychiatric abnormalities such as learning deficits and autism.

  9. C-terminal Src Kinase Gates Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity and Regulates Fasciclin II Expression at the Drosophila Neuromuscular Junction

    PubMed Central

    Spring, Ashlyn M.; Brusich, Douglas J.; Frank, C. Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Forms of homeostatic plasticity stabilize neuronal outputs and promote physiologically favorable synapse function. A well-studied homeostatic system operates at the Drosophila melanogaster larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ). At the NMJ, impairment of postsynaptic glutamate receptor activity is offset by a compensatory increase in presynaptic neurotransmitter release. We aim to elucidate how this process operates on a molecular level and is preserved throughout development. In this study, we identified a tyrosine kinase-driven signaling system that sustains homeostatic control of NMJ function. We identified C-terminal Src Kinase (Csk) as a potential regulator of synaptic homeostasis through an RNAi- and electrophysiology-based genetic screen. We found that Csk loss-of-function mutations impaired the sustained expression of homeostatic plasticity at the NMJ, without drastically altering synapse growth or baseline neurotransmission. Muscle-specific overexpression of Src Family Kinase (SFK) substrates that are negatively regulated by Csk also impaired NMJ homeostasis. Surprisingly, we found that transgenic Csk-YFP can support homeostatic plasticity at the NMJ when expressed either in the muscle or in the nerve. However, only muscle-expressed Csk-YFP was able to localize to NMJ structures. By immunostaining, we found that Csk mutant NMJs had dysregulated expression of the Neural Cell Adhesion Molecule homolog Fasciclin II (FasII). By immunoblotting, we found that levels of a specific isoform of FasII were decreased in homeostatically challenged GluRIIA mutant animals–but markedly increased in Csk mutant animals. Additionally, we found that postsynaptic overexpression of FasII from its endogenous locus was sufficient to impair synaptic homeostasis, and genetically reducing FasII levels in Csk mutants fully restored synaptic homeostasis. Based on these data, we propose that Csk and its SFK substrates impinge upon homeostatic control of NMJ function by regulating

  10. A conserved juxtacrine signal regulates synaptic partner recognition in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background An essential stage of neural development involves the assembly of neural circuits via formation of inter-neuronal connections. Early steps in neural circuit formation, including cell migration, axon guidance, and the localization of synaptic components, are well described. However, upon reaching their target region, most neurites still contact many potential partners. In order to assemble functional circuits, it is critical that within this group of cells, neurons identify and form connections only with their appropriate partners, a process we call synaptic partner recognition (SPR). To understand how SPR is mediated, we previously developed a genetically encoded fluorescent trans-synaptic marker called NLG-1 GRASP, which labels synaptic contacts between individual neurons of interest in dense cellular environments in the genetic model organism Caenorhabditis elegans. Results Here, we describe the first use of NLG-1 GRASP technology, to identify SPR genes that function in this critical process. The NLG-1 GRASP system allows us to assess synaptogenesis between PHB sensory neurons and AVA interneurons instantly in live animals, making genetic analysis feasible. Additionally, we employ a behavioral assay to specifically test PHB sensory circuit function. Utilizing this approach, we reveal a new role for the secreted UNC-6/Netrin ligand and its transmembrane receptor UNC-40/Deleted in colorectal cancer (DCC) in SPR. Synapses between PHB and AVA are severely reduced in unc-6 and unc-40 animals despite normal axon guidance and subcellular localization of synaptic components. Additionally, behavioral defects indicate a complete disruption of PHB circuit function in unc-40 mutants. Our data indicate that UNC-40 and UNC-6 function in PHB and AVA, respectively, to specify SPR. Strikingly, overexpression of UNC-6 in postsynaptic neurons is sufficient to promote increased PHB-AVA synaptogenesis and to potentiate the behavioral response beyond wild-type levels

  11. Neurexin-Neuroligin Synaptic Complex Regulates Schizophrenia-Related DISC1/Kal-7/Rac1 “Signalosome”

    PubMed Central

    Owczarek, Sylwia; Bang, Marie Louise; Berezin, Vladimir

    2015-01-01

    Neurexins (NXs) and neuroligins (NLs) are cell adhesion molecules that are localized at opposite sites of synaptic membranes. They interact with each other to promote the assembly, maintenance, and function of synapses in the central nervous system. Both NX and NL are cleaved from a membrane-attached intracellular domain in an activity-dependent manner, generating the soluble ectodomain of NX or NL. Expression of the NX1 and NX3 genes in the brain appears to be regulated by a schizophrenia-related protein, DISC1. Here, we show that soluble ecto-NX1β can regulate the expression of DISC1 and induce signaling downstream of DISC1. We also show that NL1 binds to a well-characterized DISC1 interaction partner, Kal-7, and this interaction can be compromised by DISC1. Our results indicate that the NX/NL synaptic complex is intrinsically involved in the regulation of DISC1 function, thus contributing to a better understanding of the pathology of schizophrenia. PMID:26078884

  12. Snx14 Regulates Neuronal Excitability, Promotes Synaptic Transmission, and Is Imprinted in the Brain of Mice

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Hsien-Sung; Yoon, Bong-June; Brooks, Sherian; Bakal, Robert; Berrios, Janet; Larsen, Rylan S.; Wallace, Michael L.; Han, Ji Eun; Chung, Eui Hwan; Zylka, Mark J.; Philpot, Benjamin D.

    2014-01-01

    Genomic imprinting describes an epigenetic process through which genes can be expressed in a parent-of-origin-specific manner. The monoallelic expression of imprinted genes renders them particularly susceptible to disease causing mutations. A large proportion of imprinted genes are expressed in the brain, but little is known about their functions. Indeed, it has proven difficult to identify cell type-specific imprinted genes due to the heterogeneity of cell types within the brain. Here we used laser capture microdissection of visual cortical neurons and found evidence that sorting nexin 14 (Snx14) is a neuronally imprinted gene in mice. SNX14 protein levels are high in the brain and progressively increase during neuronal development and maturation. Snx14 knockdown reduces intrinsic excitability and severely impairs both excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission. These data reveal a role for monoallelic Snx14 expression in maintaining normal neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission. PMID:24859318

  13. Protective effect of tetrahydroxy stilbene glucoside on learning and memory by regulating synaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Hong-bo; Li, Yun; Liu, Zun-jing; Cao, Li; Zhang, Zhi-qiang; Wang, Yong; Zhang, Xiao-yan; Liu, Zhao; Shi, Xiang-qun

    2016-01-01

    Damage to synaptic plasticity induced by neurotoxicity of amyloid-beta is regarded to be one of the pathological mechanisms of learning and memory disabilities in Alzheimer's disease patients. This study assumed that the damage of amyloid-beta to learning and memory abilities was strongly associated with the changes in the Fyn/N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor 2B (NR2B) expression. An APP695V7171 transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer's disease was used and treatment with tetrahydroxy-stilbene glucoside was administered intragastrically. Results showed that intragastric administration of tetrahydroxy-stilbene glucoside improved the learning and memory abilities of the transgenic mice through increasing NR2B receptors and Fyn expression. It also reversed parameters for synaptic interface structure of gray type I. These findings indicate that tetrahydroxy stilbene glucoside has protective effects on the brain, and has prospects for its clinical application to improve the learning and memory abilities and treat Alzheimer's disease. PMID:27857754

  14. Anemoside A3 Enhances Cognition through the Regulation of Synaptic Function and Neuroprotection

    PubMed Central

    Ip, Fanny CF; Fu, Wing-Yu; Cheng, Elaine YL; Tong, Estella PS; Lok, Ka-Chun; Liang, Yan; Ye, Wen-Cai; Ip, Nancy Y

    2015-01-01

    Compounds that have the ability to both strengthen synaptic function and facilitate neuroprotection are valuable cognitive enhancers that may improve health and quality of life, as well as retard age-related cognitive deterioration. Medicinal plants are an abundant source of potential cognitive enhancers. Here we report that anemoside A3 (AA3) isolated from Pulsatilla chinensis modulates synaptic connectivity in circuits central to memory enhancement. AA3 specifically modulates the function of AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs) by increasing serine phosphorylation within the GluA1 subunit, which is a modification required for the trafficking of GluA1-containing AMPARs to synapses. Furthermore, AA3 administration activates several synaptic signaling molecules and increases protein expressions of the neurotrophin brain-derived neurotrophic factor and monoamine neurotransmitters in the mouse hippocampus. In addition to acting through AMPARs, AA3 also acts as a non-competitive NMDA receptor (NMDAR) modulator with a neuroprotective capacity against ischemic brain injury and overexcitation in rats. These findings collectively suggest that AA3 possesses a unique ability to modulate the functions of both AMPARs and NMDARs. Concordantly, behavioral studies indicate that AA3 not only facilitates hippocampal long-term potentiation but also enhances spatial reference memory formation in mice. These multifaceted roles suggest that AA3 is an attractive candidate for further development as a cognitive enhancer capable of alleviating memory dysfunctions associated with aging and neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25649278

  15. Activity-dependent regulation of synaptic strength by PSD-95 in CA1 neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Peng

    2012-01-01

    CaMKII and PSD-95 are the two most abundant postsynaptic proteins in the postsynaptic density (PSD). Overexpression of either can dramatically increase synaptic strength and saturate long-term potentiation (LTP). To do so, CaMKII must be activated, but the same is not true for PSD-95; expressing wild-type PSD-95 is sufficient. This raises the question of whether PSD-95's effects are simply an equilibrium process [increasing the number of AMPA receptor (AMPAR) slots] or whether activity is somehow involved. To examine this question, we blocked activity in cultured hippocampal slices with TTX and found that the effects of PSD-95 overexpression were greatly reduced. We next studied the type of receptors involved. The effects of PSD-95 were prevented by antagonists of group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) but not by antagonists of ionotropic glutamate receptors. The inhibition of PSD-95-induced strengthening was not simply a result of inhibition of PSD-95 synthesis. To understand the mechanisms involved, we tested the role of CaMKII. Overexpression of a CaMKII inhibitor, CN19, greatly reduced the effect of PSD-95. We conclude that PSD-95 cannot itself increase synaptic strength simply by increasing the number of AMPAR slots; rather, PSD-95's effects on synaptic strength require an activity-dependent process involving mGluR and CaMKII. PMID:22114157

  16. Reactive Oxygen Species in the Regulation of Synaptic Plasticity and Memory

    PubMed Central

    Klann, Eric

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The brain is a metabolically active organ exhibiting high oxygen consumption and robust production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). The large amounts of ROS are kept in check by an elaborate network of antioxidants, which sometimes fail and lead to neuronal oxidative stress. Thus, ROS are typically categorized as neurotoxic molecules and typically exert their detrimental effects via oxidation of essential macromolecules such as enzymes and cytoskeletal proteins. Most importantly, excessive ROS are associated with decreased performance in cognitive function. However, at physiological concentrations, ROS are involved in functional changes necessary for synaptic plasticity and hence, for normal cognitive function. The fine line of role reversal of ROS from good molecules to bad molecules is far from being fully understood. This review focuses on identifying the multiple sources of ROS in the mammalian nervous system and on presenting evidence for the critical and essential role of ROS in synaptic plasticity and memory. The review also shows that the inability to restrain either age- or pathology-related increases in ROS levels leads to opposite, detrimental effects that are involved in impairments in synaptic plasticity and memory function. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 14, 2013–2054. PMID:20649473

  17. The neuronal kinesin UNC-104/KIF1A is a key regulator of synaptic aging and insulin signaling-regulated memory

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ling-Bo; Lei, Haoyun; Arey, Rachel N.; Li, Pengpeng; Liu, Jianfeng; Murphy, Coleen T.; Xu, X.Z. Shawn; Shen, Kang

    2016-01-01

    Summary Aging is the greatest risk factor for a number of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Furthermore, normal aging is associated with a decline in sensory, motor, and cognitive functions. Emerging evidence suggests that synapse alterations, rather than neuronal cell death, are the causes of neuronal dysfunctions in normal aging, and in early stages of neurodegenerative diseases. However, little is known about the mechanisms underlying age-related synaptic decline. Here we uncover a surprising role of the anterograde molecular motor UNC-104/KIF1A as a key regulator of neural circuit deterioration in aging C. elegans. Through analyses of synapse protein localization, synaptic transmission, and animal behaviors, we find that reduced function of UNC-104 accelerates motor circuit dysfunction with age, while upregulation of UNC-104 significantly improves motor function at advanced ages and also mildly extends lifespan. In addition, UNC-104-overexpressing animals outperform wild-type controls in associative learning and memory tests. Further genetic analyses suggest that UNC-104 functions downstream of the DAF-2 signaling pathway, and is regulated by the FOXO transcription factor DAF-16, which contributes to the effects of DAF-2 in neuronal aging. Together, our cellular, electrophysiological, and behavioral analyses highlight the importance of axonal transport in the maintenance of synaptic structural integrity and function during aging, and raise the possibility of targeting kinesins to slow age-related neural circuit dysfunction. PMID:26877087

  18. Behavior control in the sensorimotor loop with short-term synaptic dynamics induced by self-regulating neurons

    PubMed Central

    Toutounji, Hazem; Pasemann, Frank

    2014-01-01

    The behavior and skills of living systems depend on the distributed control provided by specialized and highly recurrent neural networks. Learning and memory in these systems is mediated by a set of adaptation mechanisms, known collectively as neuronal plasticity. Translating principles of recurrent neural control and plasticity to artificial agents has seen major strides, but is usually hampered by the complex interactions between the agent's body and its environment. One of the important standing issues is for the agent to support multiple stable states of behavior, so that its behavioral repertoire matches the requirements imposed by these interactions. The agent also must have the capacity to switch between these states in time scales that are comparable to those by which sensory stimulation varies. Achieving this requires a mechanism of short-term memory that allows the neurocontroller to keep track of the recent history of its input, which finds its biological counterpart in short-term synaptic plasticity. This issue is approached here by deriving synaptic dynamics in recurrent neural networks. Neurons are introduced as self-regulating units with a rich repertoire of dynamics. They exhibit homeostatic properties for certain parameter domains, which result in a set of stable states and the required short-term memory. They can also operate as oscillators, which allow them to surpass the level of activity imposed by their homeostatic operation conditions. Neural systems endowed with the derived synaptic dynamics can be utilized for the neural behavior control of autonomous mobile agents. The resulting behavior depends also on the underlying network structure, which is either engineered or developed by evolutionary techniques. The effectiveness of these self-regulating units is demonstrated by controlling locomotion of a hexapod with 18 degrees of freedom, and obstacle-avoidance of a wheel-driven robot. PMID:24904403

  19. Differential regulation of BDNF, synaptic plasticity and sprouting in the hippocampal mossy fiber pathway of male and female rats.

    PubMed

    Scharfman, Helen E; MacLusky, Neil J

    2014-01-01

    Many studies have described potent effects of BDNF, 17β-estradiol or androgen on hippocampal synapses and their plasticity. Far less information is available about the interactions between 17β-estradiol and BDNF in hippocampus, or interactions between androgen and BDNF in hippocampus. Here we review the regulation of BDNF in the mossy fiber pathway, a critical part of hippocampal circuitry. We discuss the emerging view that 17β-estradiol upregulates mossy fiber BDNF synthesis in the adult female rat, while testosterone exerts a tonic suppression of mossy fiber BDNF levels in the adult male rat. The consequences are interesting to consider: in females, increased excitability associated with high levels of BDNF in mossy fibers could improve normal functions of area CA3, such as the ability to perform pattern completion. However, memory retrieval may lead to anxiety if stressful events are recalled. Therefore, the actions of 17β-estradiol on the mossy fiber pathway in females may provide a potential explanation for the greater incidence of anxiety-related disorders and post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD) in women relative to men. In males, suppression of BDNF-dependent plasticity in the mossy fibers may be protective, but at the 'price' of reduced synaptic plasticity in CA3. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'BDNF Regulation of Synaptic Structure, Function, and Plasticity'.

  20. Synaptic growth: dancing with adducin.

    PubMed

    Stevens, Robin J; Littleton, J Troy

    2011-05-24

    Manipulations of the actin-capping protein adducin in Drosophila and mammalian neurons provide new insights into the mechanisms linking structural changes to synaptic plasticity and learning. Adducin regulates synaptic remodeling, providing a molecular switch that controls synaptic growth versus disassembly during plasticity.

  1. Regulation of Synaptic Vesicle Docking by Different Classes of Macromolecules in Active Zone Material

    PubMed Central

    Szule, Joseph A.; Harlow, Mark L.; Jung, Jae Hoon; De-Miguel, Francisco F.; Marshall, Robert M.; McMahan, Uel J.

    2012-01-01

    The docking of synaptic vesicles at active zones on the presynaptic plasma membrane of axon terminals is essential for their fusion with the membrane and exocytosis of their neurotransmitter to mediate synaptic impulse transmission. Dense networks of macromolecules, called active zone material, (AZM) are attached to the presynaptic membrane next to docked vesicles. Electron tomography has shown that some AZM macromolecules are connected to docked vesicles, leading to the suggestion that AZM is somehow involved in the docking process. We used electron tomography on the simply arranged active zones at frog neuromuscular junctions to characterize the connections of AZM to docked synaptic vesicles and to search for the establishment of such connections during vesicle docking. We show that each docked vesicle is connected to 10–15 AZM macromolecules, which fall into four classes based on several criteria including their position relative to the presynaptic membrane. In activated axon terminals fixed during replacement of docked vesicles by previously undocked vesicles, undocked vesicles near vacated docking sites on the presynaptic membrane have connections to the same classes of AZM macromolecules that are connected to docked vesicles in resting terminals. The number of classes and the total number of macromolecules to which the undocked vesicles are connected are inversely proportional to the vesicles’ distance from the presynaptic membrane. We conclude that vesicle movement toward and maintenance at docking sites on the presynaptic membrane are directed by an orderly succession of stable interactions between the vesicles and distinct classes of AZM macromolecules positioned at different distances from the membrane. Establishing the number, arrangement and sequence of association of AZM macromolecules involved in vesicle docking provides an anatomical basis for testing and extending concepts of docking mechanisms provided by biochemistry. PMID:22438915

  2. Tetraspanin 6: A novel regulator of hippocampal synaptic transmission and long term plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Salas, Isabel H.; Callaerts-Vegh, Zsuzsanna; Arranz, Amaia M.; Guix, Francesc X.; D’Hooge, Rudi; Esteban, José A.

    2017-01-01

    Tetraspanins (Tspan) are transmembrane proteins with important scaffold and signalling functions. Deletions of Tetraspanin 6 (Tspan6) gene, a member of the tetraspanin family, have been reported in patients with Epilepsy Female-restricted with Mental Retardation (EFMR). Interestingly, mutations in Tspan7, highly homologous to Tspan6, are associated with X-linked intellectual disability, suggesting that these two proteins are important for cognition. Considering recent evidences showing that Tspan7 plays a key role in synapse development and AMPAR trafficking, we initiated the study of Tspan6 in synaptic function using a Tspan6 knock out mouse model. Here we report that hippocampal field recordings from Tspan6 knock out mice show an enhanced basal synaptic transmission and impaired long term potentiation (LTP). A normal paired-pulse facilitation response suggests that Tspan6 affects the properties of the postsynaptic rather than the presynaptic terminal. However, no changes in spine morphology or postsynaptic markers could be detected in Tspan6 KO mice compared with wild types. In addition, Tspan6 KO mice show normal locomotor behaviour and no defects in hippocampus-dependent memory tests. PMID:28207852

  3. Interaction of Acetylcholinesterase with Neurexin-1β regulates Glutamatergic Synaptic stability in Hippocampal neurons

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Excess expression of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) in the cortex and hippocampus causes a decrease in the number of glutamatergic synapses and alters the expression of neurexin and neuroligin, trans-synaptic proteins that control synaptic stability. The molecular sequence and three-dimensional structure of AChE are homologous to the corresponding aspects of the ectodomain of neuroligin. This study investigated whether excess AChE interacts physically with neurexin to destabilize glutamatergic synapses. Results The results showed that AChE clusters colocalized with neurexin assemblies in the neurites of hippocampal neurons and that AChE co-immunoprecipitated with neurexin from the lysate of these neurons. Moreover, when expressed in human embryonic kidney 293 cells, N-glycosylated AChE co-immunoprecipitated with non-O–glycosylated neurexin-1β, with N-glycosylation of the AChE being required for this co-precipitation to occur. Increasing extracellular AChE decreased the association of neurexin with neuroligin and inhibited neuroligin-induced synaptogenesis. The number and activity of excitatory synapses in cultured hippocampal neurons were reduced by extracellular catalytically inactive AChE. Conclusions Excessive glycosylated AChE could competitively disrupt a subset of the neurexin–neuroligin junctions consequently impairing the integrity of glutamatergic synapses. This might serve a molecular mechanism of excessive AChE induced neurodegeneration. PMID:24594013

  4. Short term synaptic plasticity regulates the level of olivocochlear inhibition to auditory hair cells

    PubMed Central

    Ballestero, Jimena; de San Martín, Javier Zorrilla; Goutman, Juan; Elgoyhen, Ana Belén; Fuchs, Paul A.; Katz, Eleonora

    2011-01-01

    In the mammalian inner ear, the gain control of auditory inputs is exerted by medial olivocochlear (MOC) neurons that innervate cochlear outer hair cells (OHCs). OHCs mechanically amplify the incoming sound waves by virtue of their electromotile properties while the MOC system reduces the gain of auditory inputs by inhibiting OHCs function. How this process is orchestrated at the synaptic level remains unknown. In the present study, MOC firing was evoked by electrical stimulation in an isolated mouse cochlear preparation, while OHCs postsynaptic responses were monitored by whole-cell recordings. These recordings confirmed that electrically evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents (eIPSCs) are mediated solely by α9α10 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) functionally coupled to calcium-activated SK2 channels. Synaptic release occurred with low probability when MOC-OHC synapses were stimulated at 1Hz. However, as the stimulation frequency was raised, the reliability of release increased due to presynaptic facilitation. In addition, the relatively slow decay of eIPSCs gave rise to temporal summation at stimulation frequencies above 10 Hz. The combined effect of facilitation and summation resulted in a frequency-dependent increase in the average amplitude of inhibitory currents in OHCs. Thus, we have demonstrated that short-term plasticity is responsible for shaping MOC inhibition and, therefore, encodes the transfer function from efferent firing frequency to the gain of the cochlear amplifier. PMID:21994392

  5. Regulation of AMPA receptor surface trafficking and synaptic plasticity by a cognitive enhancer and antidepressant molecule.

    PubMed

    Zhang, H; Etherington, L-A; Hafner, A-S; Belelli, D; Coussen, F; Delagrange, P; Chaouloff, F; Spedding, M; Lambert, J J; Choquet, D; Groc, L

    2013-04-01

    The plasticity of excitatory synapses is an essential brain process involved in cognitive functions, and dysfunctions of such adaptations have been linked to psychiatric disorders such as depression. Although the intracellular cascades that are altered in models of depression and stress-related disorders have been under considerable scrutiny, the molecular interplay between antidepressants and glutamatergic signaling remains elusive. Using a combination of electrophysiological and single nanoparticle tracking approaches, we here report that the cognitive enhancer and antidepressant tianeptine (S 1574, [3-chloro-6-methyl-5,5-dioxo-6,11-dihydro-(c,f)-dibenzo-(1,2-thiazepine)-11-yl) amino]-7 heptanoic acid, sodium salt) favors synaptic plasticity in hippocampal neurons both under basal conditions and after acute stress. Strikingly, tianeptine rapidly reduces the surface diffusion of AMPA receptor (AMPAR) through a Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII)-dependent mechanism that enhances the binding of AMPAR auxiliary subunit stargazin with PSD-95. This prevents corticosterone-induced AMPAR surface dispersal and restores long-term potentiation of acutely stressed mice. Collectively, these data provide the first evidence that a therapeutically used drug targets the surface diffusion of AMPAR through a CaMKII-stargazin-PSD-95 pathway, to promote long-term synaptic plasticity.

  6. Fmrp Interacts with Adar and Regulates RNA Editing, Synaptic Density and Locomotor Activity in Zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Porath, Hagit T.; Barak, Michal; Pinto, Yishay; Wachtel, Chaim; Zilberberg, Alona; Lerer-Goldshtein, Tali; Efroni, Sol; Levanon, Erez Y.; Appelbaum, Lior

    2015-01-01

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most frequent inherited form of mental retardation. The cause for this X-linked disorder is the silencing of the fragile X mental retardation 1 (fmr1) gene and the absence of the fragile X mental retardation protein (Fmrp). The RNA-binding protein Fmrp represses protein translation, particularly in synapses. In Drosophila, Fmrp interacts with the adenosine deaminase acting on RNA (Adar) enzymes. Adar enzymes convert adenosine to inosine (A-to-I) and modify the sequence of RNA transcripts. Utilizing the fmr1 zebrafish mutant (fmr1-/-), we studied Fmrp-dependent neuronal circuit formation, behavior, and Adar-mediated RNA editing. By combining behavior analyses and live imaging of single axons and synapses, we showed hyperlocomotor activity, as well as increased axonal branching and synaptic density, in fmr1-/- larvae. We identified thousands of clustered RNA editing sites in the zebrafish transcriptome and showed that Fmrp biochemically interacts with the Adar2a protein. The expression levels of the adar genes and Adar2 protein increased in fmr1-/- zebrafish. Microfluidic-based multiplex PCR coupled with deep sequencing showed a mild increase in A-to-I RNA editing levels in evolutionarily conserved neuronal and synaptic Adar-targets in fmr1-/- larvae. These findings suggest that loss of Fmrp results in increased Adar-mediated RNA editing activity on target-specific RNAs, which, in turn, might alter neuronal circuit formation and behavior in FXS. PMID:26637167

  7. Astrocytes optimize synaptic fidelity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadkarni, Suhita; Jung, Peter; Levine, Herbert

    2007-03-01

    Most neuronal synapses in the central nervous system are enwrapped by an astrocytic process. This relation allows the astrocyte to listen to and feed back to the synapse and to regulate synaptic transmission. We combine a tested mathematical model for the Ca^2+ response of the synaptic astrocyte and presynaptic feedback with a detailed model for vesicle release of neurotransmitter at active zones. The predicted Ca^2+ dependence of the presynaptic synaptic vesicle release compares favorably for several types of synapses, including the Calyx of Held. We hypothesize that the feedback regulation of the astrocyte onto the presynaptic terminal optimizes the fidelity of the synapse in terms of information transmission.

  8. p140Cap regulates memory and synaptic plasticity through Src-mediated and citron-N-mediated actin reorganization.

    PubMed

    Repetto, Daniele; Camera, Paola; Melani, Riccardo; Morello, Noemi; Russo, Isabella; Calcagno, Eleonora; Tomasoni, Romana; Bianchi, Federico; Berto, Gaia; Giustetto, Maurizio; Berardi, Nicoletta; Pizzorusso, Tommaso; Matteoli, Michela; Di Stefano, Paola; Missler, Markus; Turco, Emilia; Di Cunto, Ferdinando; Defilippi, Paola

    2014-01-22

    A major challenge in the neuroscience field is the identification of molecules and pathways that control synaptic plasticity and memory. Dendritic spines play a pivotal role in these processes, as the major sites of excitatory synapses in neuronal communication. Previous studies have shown that the scaffold protein p140Cap localizes into dendritic spines and that its knockdown negatively modulates spine shape in culture. However, so far, there is no information on its in vivo relevance. By using a knock-out mouse model, we here demonstrate that p140Cap is a key element for both learning and synaptic plasticity. Indeed, p140Cap(-/-) mice are impaired in object recognition test, as well as in LTP and in LTD measurements. The in vivo effects of p140Cap loss are presumably attenuated by noncell-autonomous events, since primary neurons obtained from p140Cap(-/-) mice show a strong reduction in number of mushroom spines and abnormal organization of synapse-associated F-actin. These phenotypes are most likely caused by a local reduction of the inhibitory control of RhoA and of cortactin toward the actin-depolymerizing factor cofilin. These events can be controlled by p140Cap through its capability to directly inhibit the activation of Src kinase and by its binding to the scaffold protein Citron-N. Altogether, our results provide new insight into how protein associated with dynamic microtubules may regulate spine actin organization through interaction with postsynaptic density components.

  9. Distinct forms of synaptic inhibition and neuromodulation regulate calretinin-positive neuron excitability in the spinal cord dorsal horn.

    PubMed

    Smith, K M; Boyle, K A; Mustapa, M; Jobling, P; Callister, R J; Hughes, D I; Graham, B A

    2016-06-21

    The dorsal horn (DH) of the spinal cord contains a heterogenous population of neurons that process incoming sensory signals before information ascends to the brain. We have recently characterized calretinin-expressing (CR+) neurons in the DH and shown that they can be divided into excitatory and inhibitory subpopulations. The excitatory population receives high-frequency excitatory synaptic input and expresses delayed firing action potential discharge, whereas the inhibitory population receives weak excitatory drive and exhibits tonic or initial bursting discharge. Here, we characterize inhibitory synaptic input and neuromodulation in the two CR+ populations, in order to determine how each is regulated. We show that excitatory CR+ neurons receive mixed inhibition from GABAergic and glycinergic sources, whereas inhibitory CR+ neurons receive inhibition, which is dominated by glycine. Noradrenaline and serotonin produced robust outward currents in excitatory CR+ neurons, predicting an inhibitory action on these neurons, but neither neuromodulator produced a response in CR+ inhibitory neurons. In contrast, enkephalin (along with selective mu and delta opioid receptor agonists) produced outward currents in inhibitory CR+ neurons, consistent with an inhibitory action but did not affect the excitatory CR+ population. Our findings show that the pharmacology of inhibitory inputs and neuromodulator actions on CR+ cells, along with their excitatory inputs can define these two subpopulations further, and this could be exploited to modulate discrete aspects of sensory processing selectively in the DH.

  10. Dopamine D1/D5 receptor signaling regulates synaptic cooperation and competition in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons via sustained ERK1/2 activation

    PubMed Central

    Shivarama Shetty, Mahesh; Gopinadhan, Suma

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Synaptic cooperation and competition are important components of synaptic plasticity that tune synapses for the formation of associative long‐term plasticity, a cellular correlate of associative long‐term memory. We have recently reported that coincidental activation of weak synapses within the vicinity of potentiated synapses will alter the cooperative state of synapses to a competitive state thus leading to the slow decay of long‐term plasticity, but the molecular mechanism underlying this is still unknown. Here, using acute hippocampal slices of rats, we have examined how increasing extracellular dopamine concentrations interact and/or affect electrically induced long‐term potentiation (LTP) in the neighboring synapses. We demonstrate that D1/D5‐receptor‐mediated potentiation at the CA1 Schaffer collateral synapses differentially regulates synaptic co‐operation and competition. Further investigating the molecular players involved, we reveal an important role for extracellular signal‐regulated kinases‐1 and 2 (ERK1/2) as signal integrators and dose‐sensors. Interestingly, a sustained activation of ERK1/2 pathway seems to be involved in the differential regulation of synaptic associativity. The concentration‐dependent effects of the modulatory transmitter, as demonstrated for dopaminergic signaling in the present study, might offer additional computational power by fine tuning synaptic associativity processes for establishing long‐term associative memory in neural networks. © 2015 The Authors Hippocampus Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26194339

  11. Dopamine D1/D5 receptor signaling regulates synaptic cooperation and competition in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons via sustained ERK1/2 activation.

    PubMed

    Shivarama Shetty, Mahesh; Gopinadhan, Suma; Sajikumar, Sreedharan

    2016-02-01

    Synaptic cooperation and competition are important components of synaptic plasticity that tune synapses for the formation of associative long-term plasticity, a cellular correlate of associative long-term memory. We have recently reported that coincidental activation of weak synapses within the vicinity of potentiated synapses will alter the cooperative state of synapses to a competitive state thus leading to the slow decay of long-term plasticity, but the molecular mechanism underlying this is still unknown. Here, using acute hippocampal slices of rats, we have examined how increasing extracellular dopamine concentrations interact and/or affect electrically induced long-term potentiation (LTP) in the neighboring synapses. We demonstrate that D1/D5-receptor-mediated potentiation at the CA1 Schaffer collateral synapses differentially regulates synaptic co-operation and competition. Further investigating the molecular players involved, we reveal an important role for extracellular signal-regulated kinases-1 and 2 (ERK1/2) as signal integrators and dose-sensors. Interestingly, a sustained activation of ERK1/2 pathway seems to be involved in the differential regulation of synaptic associativity. The concentration-dependent effects of the modulatory transmitter, as demonstrated for dopaminergic signaling in the present study, might offer additional computational power by fine tuning synaptic associativity processes for establishing long-term associative memory in neural networks.

  12. A postsynaptic transient K+ current modulated by arachidonic acid regulates synaptic integration and threshold for LTP induction in hippocampal pyramidal cells

    PubMed Central

    Ramakers, Geert M. J.; Storm, Johan F.

    2002-01-01

    Voltage-gated ion channels in the dendrites and somata of central neurons can modulate the impact of synaptic inputs. One of the ionic currents contributing to such modulation is the fast inactivating A-type potassium current (IA). We have investigated the role of IA in synaptic integration in rat CA1 pyramidal cells by using arachidonic acid (AA) and heteropodatoxin-3 (HpTX3), a selective blocker of the Kv4 channels underlying much of the somatodendritic IA. AA and HpTX3 each reduced IA by 60–70% (measured at the soma) and strongly enhanced the amplitude and summation of excitatory postsynaptic responses, thus facilitating action potential discharges. HpTX3 also reduced the threshold for induction of long-term potentiation. We conclude that the postsynaptic IA is activated during synaptic depolarizations and effectively regulates the somatodendritic integration of high-frequency trains of synaptic input. AA, which can be released by such input, enhances synaptic efficacy by suppressing IA, which could play an important role in frequency-dependent synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. PMID:12114547

  13. Protons are a neurotransmitter that regulates synaptic plasticity in the lateral amygdala.

    PubMed

    Du, Jianyang; Reznikov, Leah R; Price, Margaret P; Zha, Xiang-ming; Lu, Yuan; Moninger, Thomas O; Wemmie, John A; Welsh, Michael J

    2014-06-17

    Stimulating presynaptic terminals can increase the proton concentration in synapses. Potential receptors for protons are acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs), Na(+)- and Ca(2+)-permeable channels that are activated by extracellular acidosis. Those observations suggest that protons might be a neurotransmitter. We found that presynaptic stimulation transiently reduced extracellular pH in the amygdala. The protons activated ASICs in lateral amygdala pyramidal neurons, generating excitatory postsynaptic currents. Moreover, both protons and ASICs were required for synaptic plasticity in lateral amygdala neurons. The results identify protons as a neurotransmitter, and they establish ASICs as the postsynaptic receptor. They also indicate that protons and ASICs are a neurotransmitter/receptor pair critical for amygdala-dependent learning and memory.

  14. Myosin IXa Binds AMPAR and Regulates Synaptic Structure, LTP, and Cognitive Function

    PubMed Central

    Folci, Alessandra; Murru, Luca; Vezzoli, Elena; Ponzoni, Luisa; Gerosa, Laura; Moretto, Edoardo; Longo, Fabiana; Zapata, Jonathan; Braida, Daniela; Pistillo, Francesco; Bähler, Martin; Francolini, Maura; Sala, Mariaelvina; Bassani, Silvia

    2016-01-01

    Myosin IXa (Myo9a) is a motor protein that is highly expressed in the brain. However, the role of Myo9a in neurons remains unknown. Here, we investigated Myo9a function in hippocampal synapses. In rat hippocampal neurons, Myo9a localizes to the postsynaptic density (PSD) and binds the alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid receptor (AMPAR) GluA2 subunit. Myo9a+/- mice displayed a thicker PSD and increased levels of PSD95 and surface AMPAR expression. Furthermore, synaptic transmission, long-term potentiation (LTP) and cognitive functions were impaired in Myo9a+/- mice. Together, these results support a key role for Myo9a in controlling the molecular structure and function of hippocampal synapses. PMID:26834556

  15. Constitutive expression of zif268 in neocortex is regulated by synaptic activity.

    PubMed Central

    Worley, P F; Christy, B A; Nakabeppu, Y; Bhat, R V; Cole, A J; Baraban, J M

    1991-01-01

    Transcription factors are rapidly and transiently induced in brain by excitatory stimuli and may be important in coordinating changes in gene expression underlying neuronal plasticity. In contrast to their transient induction after stimulation, certain transcription factors display stable, relatively high basal levels of expression in brain. Here we demonstrate that this "constitutive" expression of the transcription factor zif268 in cortex is driven by natural synaptic activity. Blockade of afferent visual activity with intraocular injections of tetrodotoxin results in rapid, dramatic reductions of Zif268 mRNA and immunoreactivity in visual cortex. Moreover, dark-adaptation for several days lowers zif268 expression in visual cortex, and expression rapidly returns to control levels upon subsequent light exposure. Several other transcription factors, which are induced in cortical neurons by excitatory stimuli, appear less responsive to changes in natural sensory input. These studies suggest that transcription factors play a role not only in responses to artificial stimuli but also in the normal maintenance of cortical physiology. Anatomic markers for zif268 may be useful in mapping normal cortical activity in brain. Images PMID:1828891

  16. Cdk5 and the mystery of synaptic vesicle endocytosis.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Chan; Bibb, James A

    2003-11-24

    Regulation of endocytosis by protein phosphorylation and dephosphorylation is critical to synaptic vesicle recycling. Two groups have now identified the neuronal kinase Cdk5 (cyclin-dependent kinase 5) as an important regulator of this process. Robinson and coworkers recently demonstrated that Cdk5 is necessary for synaptic vesicle endocytosis (SVE) (Tan et al., 2003), whereas a new report in this issue claims that Cdk5 negatively regulates SVE (Tomizawa et al., 2003). Careful examination of the data reveals a model that helps resolve the apparently contradictory nature of these reports.

  17. 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

  18. CELF4 Regulates Translation and Local Abundance of a Vast Set of mRNAs, Including Genes Associated with Regulation of Synaptic Function

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Wenzhi; Mahaffey, Connie L.; Curk, Tomaž; Rot, Gregor; Ule, Jernej; Frankel, Wayne N.

    2012-01-01

    RNA–binding proteins have emerged as causal agents of complex neurological diseases. Mice deficient for neuronal RNA–binding protein CELF4 have a complex neurological disorder with epilepsy as a prominent feature. Human CELF4 has recently been associated with clinical features similar to those seen in mutant mice. CELF4 is expressed primarily in excitatory neurons, including large pyramidal cells of the cerebral cortex and hippocampus, and it regulates excitatory but not inhibitory neurotransmission. We examined mechanisms underlying neuronal hyperexcitability in Celf4 mutants by identifying CELF4 target mRNAs and assessing their fate in the absence of CELF4 in view of their known functions. CELF4 binds to at least 15%–20% of the transcriptome, with striking specificity for the mRNA 3′ untranslated region. CELF4 mRNA targets encode a variety of proteins, many of which are well established in neuron development and function. While the overall abundance of these mRNA targets is often dysregulated in Celf4 deficient mice, the actual expression changes are modest at the steady-state level. In contrast, by examining the transcriptome of polysome fractions and the mRNA distribution along the neuronal cell body-neuropil axis, we found that CELF4 is critical for maintaining mRNA stability and availability for translation. Among biological processes associated with CELF4 targets that accumulate in neuropil of mutants, regulation of synaptic plasticity and transmission are the most prominent. Together with a related study of the impact of CELF4 loss on sodium channel Nav1.6 function, we suggest that CELF4 deficiency leads to abnormal neuronal function by combining a specific effect on neuronal excitation with a general impairment of synaptic transmission. These results also expand our understanding of the vital roles RNA–binding proteins play in regulating and shaping the activity of neural circuits. PMID:23209433

  19. ERG-28 controls BK channel trafficking in the ER to regulate synaptic function and alcohol response in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Kelly H; Haney, James J; Wang, Xiaohong; Chuang, Chiou-Fen; Richmond, Janet E; Kim, Hongkyun

    2017-01-01

    Voltage- and calcium-dependent BK channels regulate calcium-dependent cellular events such as neurotransmitter release by limiting calcium influx. Their plasma membrane abundance is an important factor in determining BK current and thus regulation of calcium-dependent events. In C. elegans, we show that ERG-28, an endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane protein, promotes the trafficking of SLO-1 BK channels from the ER to the plasma membrane by shielding them from premature degradation. In the absence of ERG-28, SLO-1 channels undergo aspartic protease DDI-1-dependent degradation, resulting in markedly reduced expression at presynaptic terminals. Loss of erg-28 suppressed phenotypic defects of slo-1 gain-of-function mutants in locomotion, neurotransmitter release, and calcium-mediated asymmetric differentiation of the AWC olfactory neuron pair, and conferred significant ethanol-resistant locomotory behavior, resembling slo-1 loss-of-function mutants, albeit to a lesser extent. Our study thus indicates that the control of BK channel trafficking is a critical regulatory mechanism for synaptic transmission and neural function. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.24733.001 PMID:28168949

  20. 'TRPing' synaptic ribbon function in the rat pineal gland: neuroendocrine regulation involves the capsaicin receptor TRPV1.

    PubMed

    Reuss, Stefan; Disque-Kaiser, Ursula; Binzen, Uta; Greffrath, Wolfgang; Peschke, Elmar

    2010-01-01

    Synaptic ribbons (SRs) are presynaptic structures thought to regulate and facilitate multivesicular release. In the pineal gland, they display a circadian rhythm with higher levels at night paralleling melatonin synthesis. To gain more insight into the processes involved and the possible functions of these structures, a series of experiments were conducted in rodents. We studied the regional distribution of a molecular marker of pineal SRs, the kinesin motor KIF3A in the gland. Respective immunoreactivity was abundant in central regions of the gland where sympathetic fibers were less dense, and vice versa, revealing that intercellular communication between adjacent pinealocytes is enhanced under low sympathetic influence. KIF3A was found to be colocalized to the transient receptor potential channel of the vanilloid receptor family, subtype 1 (TRPV1). The TRPV1 agonist capsaicin increased melatonin secretion from perifused pineals in a dose-dependent manner that was blocked by the competitive TRPV1 antagonist capsazepine. No change in free intracellular calcium was observed in response to TRPV1 ligands applied to pinealocytes responding to norepinephrine, bradykinin and/or depolarization. These data clearly indicate that TRPV1 actively regulates pineal gland function.

  1. Time-of-day regulates subcellular trafficking, tripartite synaptic localization and polyadenylation of the astrocytic Fabp7 mRNA

    PubMed Central

    Gerstner, Jason R.; Vanderheyden, William M.; LaVaute, Timothy; Westmark, Cara J.; Rouhana, Labib; Pack, Allan I.; Wickens, Marv; Landry, Charles F.

    2012-01-01

    The astrocyte brain fatty acid binding protein (Fabp7) has previously been shown to have a coordinated diurnal regulation of mRNA and protein throughout mouse brain, and an age-dependent decline in protein expression within synaptoneurosomal fractions. Mechanisms that control time-of-day changes in expression and trafficking Fabp7 to the perisynaptic process are not known. In this study, we confirmed an enrichment of Fabp7 mRNA and protein in the astrocytic perisynaptic compartment, and observed a diurnal change in the intracellular distribution of Fabp7 mRNA in molecular layers of hippocampus. Northern blotting revealed a coordinated time-of-day dependent oscillation for the Fabp7 mRNA poly(A) tail throughout murine brain. Cytoplasmic polyadenylation element-(CPE-) binding protein (CPEB1) regulates subcellular trafficking and translation of synaptic plasticity-related mRNAs. Here we show that Fabp7 mRNA co-immunoprecipitated with CPEB1 from primary mouse astrocyte extracts, and its 3′UTR contains phylogenetically conserved CPEs capable of regulating translation of reporter mRNAs during Xenopus oocyte maturation. Given that Fabp7 expression is confined to astrocytes and neural progenitors in adult mouse brain, the synchronized cycling pattern of Fabp7 mRNA is therefore novel of known CPE-regulated transcripts. These results implicate circadian, sleep and/or metabolic control of CPEB-mediated subcellular trafficking and localized translation of Fabp7 mRNA in the tripartite synapse of mammalian brain. PMID:22279223

  2. DNA methylation and histone acetylation work in concert to regulate memory formation and synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Miller, Courtney A; Campbell, Susan L; Sweatt, J David

    2008-05-01

    A clear understanding is developing concerning the importance of epigenetic-related molecular mechanisms in transcription-dependent long-term memory formation. Chromatin modification, in particular histone acetylation, is associated with transcriptional activation, and acetylation of histone 3 (H3) occurs in Area CA1 of the hippocampus following contextual fear conditioning training. Conversely, DNA methylation is associated with transcriptional repression, but is also dynamically regulated in Area CA1 following training. We recently reported that inhibition of the enzyme responsible for DNA methylation, DNA methyltransferase (DNMT), in the adult rat hippocampus blocks behavioral memory formation. Here, we report that DNMT inhibition also blocks the concomitant memory-associated H3 acetylation, without affecting phosphorylation of its upstream regulator, extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK). Interestingly, the DNMT inhibitor-induced deficit in memory consolidation, along with deficits in long-term potentiation, can be rescued by pharmacologically increasing levels of histone acetylation prior to DNMT inhibition. These observations suggest that DNMT activity is not only necessary for memory and plasticity, but that DNA methylation may work in concert with histone modifications to regulate plasticity and memory formation in the adult rat hippocampus.

  3. The Kinase Function of MSK1 Regulates BDNF Signaling to CREB and Basal Synaptic Transmission, But Is Not Required for Hippocampal Long-Term Potentiation or Spatial Memory

    PubMed Central

    Daumas, Stephanie; Hunter, Christopher J.; Mistry, Rajen B.; Cooper, Daniel D.; Reyskens, Kathleen M.; Flynn, Harry T.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The later stages of long-term potentiation (LTP) in vitro and spatial memory in vivo are believed to depend upon gene transcription. Accordingly, considerable attempts have been made to identify both the mechanisms by which transcription is regulated and indeed the gene products themselves. Previous studies have shown that deletion of one regulator of transcription, the mitogen- and stress-activated kinase 1 (MSK1), causes an impairment of spatial memory. Given the ability of MSK1 to regulate gene expression via the phosphorylation of cAMP response element binding protein (CREB) at serine 133 (S133), MSK1 is a plausible candidate as a prime regulator of transcription underpinning synaptic plasticity and learning and memory. Indeed, prior work has revealed the necessity for MSK1 in homeostatic and experience-dependent synaptic plasticity. However, using a knock-in kinase-dead mouse mutant of MSK1, the current study demonstrates that, while the kinase function of MSK1 is important in regulating the phosphorylation of CREB at S133 and basal synaptic transmission in hippocampal area CA1, it is not required for metabotropic glutamate receptor-dependent long-term depression (mGluR-LTD), two forms of LTP or several forms of spatial learning in the watermaze. These data indicate that other functions of MSK1, such as a structural role for the whole enzyme, may explain previous observations of a role for MSK1 in learning and memory. PMID:28275711

  4. University Students' Online Academic Help Seeking: The Role of Self-Regulation and Information Commitments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cheng, Kun-Hung; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2013-01-01

    Students' online academic help seeking (OAHS) can be facilitated by the aid of technology, but improvement in OAHS may also involve personal variables such as self-regulated learning (SRL), and "information commitments" (ICs), which are evaluative standards and strategies of online information. Accordingly, three instruments--an OAHS, an…

  5. GAD67-mediated GABA synthesis and signaling regulate inhibitory synaptic innervation in the visual cortex.

    PubMed

    Chattopadhyaya, Bidisha; Di Cristo, Graziella; Wu, Cai Zhi; Knott, Graham; Kuhlman, Sandra; Fu, Yu; Palmiter, Richard D; Huang, Z Josh

    2007-06-21

    The development of GABAergic inhibitory circuits is shaped by neural activity, but the underlying mechanisms are unclear. Here, we demonstrate a novel function of GABA in regulating GABAergic innervation in the adolescent brain, when GABA is mainly known as an inhibitory transmitter. Conditional knockdown of the rate-limiting synthetic enzyme GAD67 in basket interneurons in adolescent visual cortex resulted in cell autonomous deficits in axon branching, perisomatic synapse formation around pyramidal neurons, and complexity of the innervation fields; the same manipulation had little influence on the subsequent maintenance of perisomatic synapses. These effects of GABA deficiency were rescued by suppressing GABA reuptake and by GABA receptor agonists. Germline knockdown of GAD67 but not GAD65 showed similar deficits, suggesting a specific role of GAD67 in the maturation of perisomatic innervation. Since intracellular GABA levels are modulated by neuronal activity, our results implicate GAD67-mediated GABA synthesis in activity-dependent regulation of inhibitory innervation patterns.

  6. Differential regulation of BDNF, synaptic plasticity and sprouting in the hippocampal mossy fiber pathway of male and female rats

    PubMed Central

    Scharfman, Helen E.; MacLusky, Neil J.

    2013-01-01

    Many studies have described potent effects of BDNF, 17β-estradiol or androgen on hippocampal synapses and their plasticity. Far less information is available about the interactions between 17β-estradiol and BDNF in hippocampus, or interactions between androgen and BDNF in hippocampus. Here we review the regulation of BDNF in the mossy fiber pathway, a critical part of hippocampal circuitry. We discuss the emerging view that 17β-estradiol upregulates mossy fiber BDNF synthesis in the adult female rat, while testosterone exerts a tonic suppression of mossy fiber BDNF levels in the adult male rat. The consequences are interesting to consider: in females, increased excitability associated with high levels of BDNF in mossy fibers could - on the one hand - improve normal functions of area CA3, such as the ability to perform pattern completion. On the other hand, memory retrieval may lead to anxiety if stressful events are recalled. Therefore, the actions of 17β-estradiol on the mossy fiber pathway in females may provide a potential explanation for the greater incidence of anxiety-related disorders and post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD) in women relative to men. In males, suppression of BDNF-dependent plasticity in the mossy fibers may be protective, but at the `price' of reduced synaptic plasticity in CA3. PMID:23660230

  7. JAKMIP1, a novel regulator of neuronal translation, modulates synaptic function and autistic-like behaviors in mouse

    PubMed Central

    Berg, Jamee M.; Lee, Changhoon; Chen, Leslie; Galvan, Laurie; Cepeda, Carlos; Chen, Jane Y.; Peñagarikano, Olga; Stein, Jason L.; Li, Alvin; Oguro-Ando, Asami; Miller, Jeremy A.; Vashisht, Ajay A.; Starks, Mary E.; Kite, Elyse P.; Tam, Eric; Gdalyahu, Amos; Al-Sharif, Noor B.; Burkett, Zachary D.; White, Stephanie A.; Fears, Scott C.; Levine, Michael S.; Wohlschlegel, James A.; Geschwind, Daniel H.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Autism spectrum disorder is a heritable, common neurodevelopmental disorder with diverse genetic causes. Several studies have implicated protein synthesis as one among several of its potential convergent mechanisms. We originally identified janus kinase and microtubule-interacting protein 1 (JAKMIP1) as differentially expressed in patients with distinct syndromic forms of ASD, Fragile X Syndrome and 15q duplication syndrome. Here, we provide multiple lines of evidence that JAKMIP1 is a component of polyribosomes and an RNP translational regulatory complex that includes fragile X mental retardation protein, DEAD box helicase 5, and poly(A) binding protein, cytoplasmic 1. JAKMIP1 loss dysregulates neuronal translation during synaptic development, affecting glutamatergic NMDAR signaling, and results in social deficits, stereotyped activity, abnormal postnatal vocalizations, and other autistic-like behaviors in the mouse. These findings define an important and novel role for JAKMIP1 in neural development and further highlight pathways regulating mRNA translation during synaptogenesis in the genesis of neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:26627310

  8. N- and P/Q-type Ca2+ channels regulate synaptic efficacy between spinal dorsolateral funiculus terminals and motoneurons.

    PubMed

    Aguilar, Justo; Escobedo, Lourdes; Bautista, Wendy; Felix, Ricardo; Delgado-Lezama, Rodolfo

    2004-04-30

    Ca2+ influx through voltage-gated Ca2+ channels mediates synaptic transmission at numerous central synapses. However, electrophysiological and pharmacological evidence linking Ca+ channel activity with neurotransmitter release in the vertebrate mature spinal cord is scarce. In the current report, we investigated in a slice preparation from the adult turtle spinal cord, the effects of various Ca+ channel antagonists on neurotransmission at terminals from the dorsolateral funiculus synapsing motoneurons. Bath application of tetrodotoxin or NiCl2 prevented the monosynaptic excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs), and this effect was mimicked by exposure to a zero-Ca2+ solution. Application of polypeptide toxins that block N- and P/Q-type channels (omega-CTx-GVIA and omega-Aga-IVA) reduced the EPSP amplitude in a dose-dependent manner. By analyzing the input resistance and the EPSP time course, and using a paired pulse protocol we determined that both toxins act at presynaptic level to modulate neurotransmitter release. RT-PCR studies showed the expression of N- and P/Q-type channel mRNAs in the turtle spinal cord. Together, these results indicate that N- and P/Q-type Ca2+ channels may play a central role in the regulation of neurotransmitter release in the adult turtle spinal cord.

  9. LRRK2 kinase activity regulates synaptic vesicle trafficking and neurotransmitter release through modulation of LRRK2 macro-molecular complex

    PubMed Central

    Cirnaru, Maria D.; Marte, Antonella; Belluzzi, Elisa; Russo, Isabella; Gabrielli, Martina; Longo, Francesco; Arcuri, Ludovico; Murru, Luca; Bubacco, Luigi; Matteoli, Michela; Fedele, Ernesto; Sala, Carlo; Passafaro, Maria; Morari, Michele; Greggio, Elisa; Onofri, Franco; Piccoli, Giovanni

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in Leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 gene (LRRK2) are associated with familial and sporadic Parkinson's disease (PD). LRRK2 is a complex protein that consists of multiple domains executing several functions, including GTP hydrolysis, kinase activity, and protein binding. Robust evidence suggests that LRRK2 acts at the synaptic site as a molecular hub connecting synaptic vesicles to cytoskeletal elements via a complex panel of protein-protein interactions. Here we investigated the impact of pharmacological inhibition of LRRK2 kinase activity on synaptic function. Acute treatment with LRRK2 inhibitors reduced the frequency of spontaneous currents, the rate of synaptic vesicle trafficking and the release of neurotransmitter from isolated synaptosomes. The investigation of complementary models lacking LRRK2 expression allowed us to exclude potential off-side effects of kinase inhibitors on synaptic functions. Next we studied whether kinase inhibition affects LRRK2 heterologous interactions. We found that the binding among LRRK2, presynaptic proteins and synaptic vesicles is affected by kinase inhibition. Our results suggest that LRRK2 kinase activity influences synaptic vesicle release via modulation of LRRK2 macro-molecular complex. PMID:24904275

  10. Synaptic Cell Adhesion Molecules in Alzheimer's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Leshchyns'ka, Iryna

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative brain disorder associated with the loss of synapses between neurons in the brain. Synaptic cell adhesion molecules are cell surface glycoproteins which are expressed at the synaptic plasma membranes of neurons. These proteins play key roles in formation and maintenance of synapses and regulation of synaptic plasticity. Genetic studies and biochemical analysis of the human brain tissue, cerebrospinal fluid, and sera from AD patients indicate that levels and function of synaptic cell adhesion molecules are affected in AD. Synaptic cell adhesion molecules interact with Aβ, a peptide accumulating in AD brains, which affects their expression and synaptic localization. Synaptic cell adhesion molecules also regulate the production of Aβ via interaction with the key enzymes involved in Aβ formation. Aβ-dependent changes in synaptic adhesion affect the function and integrity of synapses suggesting that alterations in synaptic adhesion play key roles in the disruption of neuronal networks in AD. PMID:27242933

  11. GAD67-mediated GABA Synthesis and Signaling Regulate Inhibitory Synaptic Innervation in the Visual Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Chattopadhyaya, Bidisha; Di Cristo, Graziella; Wu, Cai Zhi; Knott, Graham; Kuhlman, Sandra; Fu, Yu; Palmiter, Richard D.; Huang, Z. Josh

    2007-01-01

    The development of GABAergic inhibitory circuits is shaped by neural activity, but the underlying mechanisms are unclear. we demonstrate a novel function of GABA in regulating GABAergic innervation in the adolescent brain, when GABA is mainly known as an inhibitory transmitter. Conditional knockdown of the rate-limiting synthetic enzyme GAD67 in basket interneurons in adolescent visual cortex resulted in cell autonomous deficits in axon branching, perisomatic synapse formation around pyramidal neurons, and complexity of the innervation fields; the same manipulation had little influence on the subsequent maintenance of perisomatic synapses. These effects of GABA deficiency were rescued by suppressing GABA re-uptake and by GABA receptor agonists. Germ-line knockdown of GAD67 but not GAD65 showed similar deficits, suggesting a specific role of GAD67 in the maturation of perisomatic innervation. Since intracellular GABA levels are modulated by neuronal activity, our results implicate GAD67-mediated GABA synthesis in activity-dependent regulation of inhibitory innervation patterns. PMID:17582330

  12. Drosophila spichthyin inhibits BMP signaling and regulates synaptic growth and axonal microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xinnan; Shaw, W. Robert; Tsang, Hilda T. H.; Reid, Evan; O'Kane, Cahir J.

    2008-01-01

    Summary To understand the functions of SPG6, mutated in the neurodegenerative disease hereditary spastic paraplegia, and of ichthyin, mutated in autosomal recessive congenital ichthyosis, we have studied their Drosophila ortholog, spichthyin (Spict). Spict is found on early endosomes. Loss of Spict leads to upregulation of BMP signaling and expansion of the neuromuscular junction. BMP signaling is also necessary for a normal microtubule cytoskeleton and axonal transport; analysis of loss and gain-of-function phenotypes suggests that Spict antagonizes this function of BMP signaling. Spict interacts with BMP receptors and promotes their internalization from the plasma membrane, suggesting that it inhibits BMP signaling by regulating BMP receptor traffic. This is the first demonstration of a role for an SPG protein or ichthyin family member in a specific signaling pathway, and suggests disease mechanisms for hereditary spastic paraplegia that involve dependence of the microtubule cytoskeleton on BMP signaling. PMID:17220882

  13. Drosophila spichthyin inhibits BMP signaling and regulates synaptic growth and axonal microtubules.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xinnan; Shaw, W Robert; Tsang, Hilda T H; Reid, Evan; O'Kane, Cahir J

    2007-02-01

    To understand the functions of NIPA1, mutated in the neurodegenerative disease hereditary spastic paraplegia, and of ichthyin, mutated in autosomal recessive congenital ichthyosis, we have studied their Drosophila melanogaster ortholog, spichthyin (Spict). Spict is found on early endosomes. Loss of Spict leads to upregulation of bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling and expansion of the neuromuscular junction. BMP signaling is also necessary for a normal microtubule cytoskeleton and axonal transport; analysis of loss- and gain-of-function phenotypes indicate that Spict may antagonize this function of BMP signaling. Spict interacts with BMP receptors and promotes their internalization from the plasma membrane, implying that it inhibits BMP signaling by regulating BMP receptor traffic. This is the first demonstration of a role for a hereditary spastic paraplegia protein or ichthyin family member in a specific signaling pathway, and implies disease mechanisms for hereditary spastic paraplegia that involve dependence of the microtubule cytoskeleton on BMP signaling.

  14. NO regulates the strength of synaptic inputs onto hippocampal CA1 neurons via NO-GC1/cGMP signalling.

    PubMed

    Neitz, A; Mergia, E; Neubacher, U; Koesling, D; Mittmann, T

    2015-06-01

    GABAergic interneurons are the predominant source of inhibition in the brain that coordinate the level of excitation and synchronization in neuronal circuitries. However, the underlying cellular mechanisms are still not fully understood. Here we report nitric oxide (NO)/NO-GC1 signalling as an important regulatory mechanism of GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the hippocampal CA1 region. Deletion of the NO receptor NO-GC1 induced functional alterations, indicated by a strong reduction of spontaneous and evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs), which could be compensated by application of the missing second messenger cGMP. Moreover, we found a general impairment in the strength of inhibitory and excitatory synaptic inputs onto CA1 pyramidal neurons deriving from NO-GC1KO mice. Finally, we disclosed one subpopulation of GABAergic interneurons, fast-spiking interneurons, that receive less excitatory synaptic input and consequently respond with less spike output after blockage of the NO/cGMP signalling pathway. On the basis of these and previous findings, we propose NO-GC1 as the major NO receptor which transduces the NO signal into cGMP at presynaptic terminals of different neuronal subtypes in the hippocampal CA1 region. Furthermore, we suggest NO-GC1-mediated cGMP signalling as a mechanism which regulates the strength of synaptic transmission, hence being important in gating information processing between hippocampal CA3 and CA1 region.

  15. Development of TIMP1 magnetic nanoformulation for regulation of synaptic plasticity in HIV-1 infection

    PubMed Central

    Atluri, Venkata Subba Rao; Jayant, Rahul Dev; Pilakka-Kanthikeel, Sudheesh; Garcia, Gabriella; Samikkannu, Thangavel; Yndart, Adriana; Kaushik, Ajeet; Nair, Madhavan

    2016-01-01

    Although the introduction of antiretroviral therapy has reduced the prevalence of severe forms of neurocognitive disorders, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-1-associated neurocognitive disorders were observed in 50% of HIV-infected patients globally. The blood–brain barrier is known to be impermeable to most of antiretroviral drugs. Successful delivery of antiretroviral drugs into the brain may induce an inflammatory response, which may further induce neurotoxicity. Therefore, alternate options to antiretroviral drugs for decreasing the HIV infection and neurotoxicity may help in reducing neurocognitive impairments observed in HIV-infected patients. In this study, we explored the role of magnetic nanoparticle (MNP)-bound tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-1 (TIMP1) protein in reducing HIV infection levels, oxidative stress, and recovering spine density in HIV-infected SK-N-MC neuroblastoma cells. We did not observe any neuronal cytotoxicity with either the free TIMP1 or MNP-bound TIMP1 used in our study. We observed significantly reduced HIV infection in both solution phase and in MNP-bound TIMP1-exposed neuronal cells. Furthermore, we also observed significantly reduced reactive oxygen species production in both the test groups compared to the neuronal cells infected with HIV alone. To observe the effect of both soluble-phase TIMP1 and MNP-bound TIMP1 on spine density in HIV-infected neuronal cells, confocal microscopy was used. We observed significant recovery of spine density in both the test groups when compared to the cells infected with HIV alone, indicting the neuroprotective effect of TIMP1. Therefore, our results suggest that the MNP-bound TIMP1 delivery method across the blood–brain barrier can be used for reducing HIV infectivity in brain tissue and neuronal toxicity in HIV-infected patients. PMID:27621622

  16. Synaptic interactions regulate gephyrin expression in avian cholinergic neurons in vivo.

    PubMed

    Allaire, P; Ikonomov, O; Garrett, M K; Jacob, M H

    2000-10-01

    Our recent studies of chick parasympathetic ciliary ganglion (CG) neurons demonstrate a unique postsynaptic receptor microheterogeneity - under one presynaptic terminal, excitatory nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) clusters and separate inhibitory glycine receptor (GlyR) clusters coexist in distinct membrane microregions. Gephyrin, a peripheral membrane protein that is required for GlyR clustering at synapses in the rodent central nervous system, is also expressed in chick CG neurons where it codistributes with GlyRs, but not nAChRs. We now extend these findings by characterizing the regulation of gephyrin expression in chick CG neurons in vivo. We show that developmental increases in gephyrin transcript levels occur during pre- and postganglionic synapse formation. The increases are induced by both innervation and target tissue interactions, with the target tissues having the greater regulatory influence. The time course of the developmental rise in gephyrin mRNA levels most closely resembles that reported for functional GlyR expression, but not that of functional nAChRs nor GABA(A) receptors. We also demonstrate that gephyrin is concentrated in the postsynaptic density of a subset of synapses on both the ciliary and choroid neurons in the CG and is stably expressed from embryonic to adult stages. Altogether, our results suggest that gephyrin is a synapse organizing molecule that functions to localize GlyRs, but not nAChRs, to discrete postsynaptic membrane microregions in chick CG neurons in vivo.

  17. Unconventional molecular regulation of synaptic vesicle replenishment in cochlear inner hair cells.

    PubMed

    Vogl, Christian; Cooper, Benjamin H; Neef, Jakob; Wojcik, Sonja M; Reim, Kerstin; Reisinger, Ellen; Brose, Nils; Rhee, Jeong-Seop; Moser, Tobias; Wichmann, Carolin

    2015-02-15

    Ribbon synapses of cochlear inner hair cells (IHCs) employ efficient vesicle replenishment to indefatigably encode sound. In neurons, neuroendocrine and immune cells, vesicle replenishment depends on proteins of the mammalian uncoordinated 13 (Munc13, also known as Unc13) and Ca(2+)-dependent activator proteins for secretion (CAPS) families, which prime vesicles for exocytosis. Here, we tested whether Munc13 and CAPS proteins also regulate exocytosis in mouse IHCs by combining immunohistochemistry with auditory systems physiology and IHC patch-clamp recordings of exocytosis in mice lacking Munc13 and CAPS isoforms. Surprisingly, we did not detect Munc13 or CAPS proteins at IHC presynaptic active zones and found normal IHC exocytosis as well as auditory brainstem responses (ABRs) in Munc13 and CAPS deletion mutants. Instead, we show that otoferlin, a C2-domain protein that is crucial for vesicular fusion and replenishment in IHCs, clusters at the plasma membrane of the presynaptic active zone. Electron tomography of otoferlin-deficient IHC synapses revealed a reduction of short tethers holding vesicles at the active zone, which might be a structural correlate of impaired vesicle priming in otoferlin-deficient IHCs. We conclude that IHCs use an unconventional priming machinery that involves otoferlin.

  18. [Leao's spreading depression: synaptic regulation of a diffuse self-oscillating process in the central nervous system].

    PubMed

    Buresh, Ia; Koroleva, V I; Gorelova, A N

    1984-01-01

    The evidence reviewed in the paper shows that the spreading depression (SD) belongs to the mass of closely packed neurons which can support qualitatively new phenomena occurring at a more primitive level of cellular interaction. The latter becomes prepotent under extreme conditions, overloading the local energy supply and homeostatic mechanisms. The two levels of neural integration, the highly heterogeneous specifically connected synaptic level and the statistically uniform diffusively organized nonsynaptic level, are always present in all forms of brain activity and mutually influence each other. While phenomena mediated by nonsynaptic interaction overrule the synaptic ones under resting conditions, excessive synaptic excitation may either switch the affected brain region from synaptic to nonsynaptic interaction (spike-triggered SD) or assert the synaptic interaction over the nonsynaptic one (functional blockade of SD). Nonsynaptic interaction is an inherent property of brain, an obligatory consequence of the trade-off between maximal packing density and independent function of individual elements of the system which sets definite limits to the maximum activation of synaptic processes, contributes to slow synchronization of neural populations and plays an important role in various instances of brain pathology. The phenomena generated at this level belong to the family of autowaves, share their typical properties and can be described by similar formal rules.

  19. Synaptic Plasticity and Translation Initiation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Klann, Eric; Antion, Marcia D.; Banko, Jessica L.; Hou, Lingfei

    2004-01-01

    It is widely accepted that protein synthesis, including local protein synthesis at synapses, is required for several forms of synaptic plasticity. Local protein synthesis enables synapses to control synaptic strength independent of the cell body via rapid protein production from pre-existing mRNA. Therefore, regulation of translation initiation is…

  20. Vorinostat positively regulates synaptic plasticity genes expression and spine density in HIV infected neurons: role of nicotine in progression of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder (HAND) is characterized by development of cognitive, behavioral and motor abnormalities, and occurs in approximately 50% of HIV infected individuals. In the United States, the prevalence of cigarette smoking ranges from 35-70% in HIV-infected individuals compared to 20% in general population. Cognitive impairment in heavy cigarette smokers has been well reported. However, the synergistic effects of nicotine and HIV infection and the underlying mechanisms in the development of HAND are unknown. Results In this study, we explored the role of nicotine in the progression of HAND using SK-N-MC, a neuronal cell line. SK-N-MC cells were infected with HIV-1 in the presence or absence of nicotine for 7 days. We observed significant increase in HIV infectivity in SK-N-MC treated with nicotine compared to untreated HIV-infected neuronal cells. HIV and nicotine synergize to significantly dysregulate the expression of synaptic plasticity genes and spine density; with a concomitant increase of HDAC2 levels in SK-N-MC cells. In addition, inhibition of HDAC2 up-regulation with the use of vorinostat resulted in HIV latency breakdown and recovery of synaptic plasticity genes expression and spine density in nicotine/HIV alone and in co-treated SK-N-MC cells. Furthermore, increased eIF2 alpha phosphorylation, which negatively regulates eukaryotic translational process, was observed in HIV alone and in co-treatment with nicotine compared to untreated control and nicotine alone treated SK-N-MC cells. Conclusions These results suggest that nicotine and HIV synergize to negatively regulate the synaptic plasticity gene expression and spine density and this may contribute to the increased risk of HAND in HIV infected smokers. Apart from disrupting latency, vorinostat may be a useful therapeutic to inhibit the negative regulatory effects on synaptic plasticity in HIV infected nicotine abusers. PMID:24886748

  1. Regulation of presynaptic Ca2+, synaptic plasticity and contextual fear conditioning by a N-terminal β-amyloid fragment.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, James L M; Tong, Mei; Alfulaij, Naghum; Sherrin, Tessi; Contarino, Mark; White, Michael M; Bellinger, Frederick P; Todorovic, Cedomir; Nichols, Robert A

    2014-10-22

    Soluble β-amyloid has been shown to regulate presynaptic Ca(2+) and synaptic plasticity. In particular, picomolar β-amyloid was found to have an agonist-like action on presynaptic nicotinic receptors and to augment long-term potentiation (LTP) in a manner dependent upon nicotinic receptors. Here, we report that a functional N-terminal domain exists within β-amyloid for its agonist-like activity. This sequence corresponds to a N-terminal fragment generated by the combined action of α- and β-secretases, and resident carboxypeptidase. The N-terminal β-amyloid fragment is present in the brains and CSF of healthy adults as well as in Alzheimer's patients. Unlike full-length β-amyloid, the N-terminal β-amyloid fragment is monomeric and nontoxic. In Ca(2+) imaging studies using a model reconstituted rodent neuroblastoma cell line and isolated mouse nerve terminals, the N-terminal β-amyloid fragment proved to be highly potent and more effective than full-length β-amyloid in its agonist-like action on nicotinic receptors. In addition, the N-terminal β-amyloid fragment augmented theta burst-induced post-tetanic potentiation and LTP in mouse hippocampal slices. The N-terminal fragment also rescued LTP inhibited by elevated levels of full-length β-amyloid. Contextual fear conditioning was also strongly augmented following bilateral injection of N-terminal β-amyloid fragment into the dorsal hippocampi of intact mice. The fragment-induced augmentation of fear conditioning was attenuated by coadministration of nicotinic antagonist. The activity of the N-terminal β-amyloid fragment appears to reside largely in a sequence surrounding a putative metal binding site, YEVHHQ. These findings suggest that the N-terminal β-amyloid fragment may serve as a potent and effective endogenous neuromodulator.

  2. NMDA Receptors Mediate Synaptic Competition in Culture

    PubMed Central

    She, Kevin; Craig, Ann Marie

    2011-01-01

    Background Activity through NMDA type glutamate receptors sculpts connectivity in the developing nervous system. This topic is typically studied in the visual system in vivo, where activity of inputs can be differentially regulated, but in which individual synapses are difficult to visualize and mechanisms governing synaptic competition can be difficult to ascertain. Here, we develop a model of NMDA-receptor dependent synaptic competition in dissociated cultured hippocampal neurons. Methodology/Principal Findings GluN1 -/- (KO) mouse hippocampal neurons lacking the essential NMDA receptor subunit were cultured alone or cultured in defined ratios with wild type (WT) neurons. The absence of functional NMDA receptors did not alter neuron survival. Synapse development was assessed by immunofluorescence for postsynaptic PSD-95 family scaffold and apposed presynaptic vesicular glutamate transporter VGlut1. Synapse density was specifically enhanced onto minority wild type neurons co-cultured with a majority of GluN1 -/- neighbour neurons, both relative to the GluN1 -/- neighbours and relative to sister pure wild type cultures. This form of synaptic competition was dependent on NMDA receptor activity and not conferred by the mere physical presence of GluN1. In contrast to these results in 10% WT and 90% KO co-cultures, synapse density did not differ by genotype in 50% WT and 50% KO co-cultures or in 90% WT and 10% KO co-cultures. Conclusions/Significance The enhanced synaptic density onto NMDA receptor-competent neurons in minority coculture with GluN1 -/- neurons represents a cell culture paradigm for studying synaptic competition. Mechanisms involved may include a retrograde ‘reward’ signal generated by WT neurons, although in this paradigm there was no ‘punishment’ signal against GluN1 -/- neurons. Cell culture assays involving such defined circuits may help uncover the rules and mechanisms of activity-dependent synaptic competition in the developing nervous

  3. Neuronal plasticity in hibernation and the proposed role of the microtubule-associated protein tau as a "master switch" regulating synaptic gain in neuronal networks.

    PubMed

    Arendt, Thomas; Bullmann, Torsten

    2013-09-01

    The present paper provides an overview of adaptive changes in brain structure and learning abilities during hibernation as a behavioral strategy used by several mammalian species to minimize energy expenditure under current or anticipated inhospitable environmental conditions. One cellular mechanism that contributes to the regulated suppression of metabolism and thermogenesis during hibernation is reversible phosphorylation of enzymes and proteins, which limits rates of flux through metabolic pathways. Reversible phosphorylation during hibernation also affects synaptic membrane proteins, a process known to be involved in synaptic plasticity. This mechanism of reversible protein phosphorylation also affects the microtubule-associated protein tau, thereby generating a condition that in the adult human brain is associated with aggregation of tau protein to paired helical filaments (PHFs), as observed in Alzheimer's disease. Here, we put forward the concept that phosphorylation of tau is a neuroprotective mechanism to escape NMDA-mediated hyperexcitability of neurons that would otherwise occur during slow gradual cooling of the brain. Phosphorylation of tau and its subsequent targeting to subsynaptic sites might, thus, work as a kind of "master switch," regulating NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic gain in a wide array of neuronal networks, thereby enabling entry into torpor. If this condition lasts too long, however, it may eventually turn into a pathological trigger, driving a cascade of events leading to neurodegeneration, as in Alzheimer's disease or other "tauopathies".

  4. Excitatory Synaptic Drive and Feedforward Inhibition in the Hippocampal CA3 Circuit Are Regulated by SynCAM 1

    PubMed Central

    Park, Kellie A.; Ribic, Adema; Laage Gaupp, Fabian M.; Coman, Daniel; Huang, Yuegao; Dulla, Chris G.; Hyder, Fahmeed

    2016-01-01

    Select adhesion proteins control the development of synapses and modulate their structural and functional properties. Despite these important roles, the extent to which different synapse-organizing mechanisms act across brain regions to establish connectivity and regulate network properties is incompletely understood. Further, their functional roles in different neuronal populations remain to be defined. Here, we applied diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), a modality of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), to map connectivity changes in knock-out (KO) mice lacking the synaptogenic cell adhesion protein SynCAM 1. This identified reduced fractional anisotropy in the hippocampal CA3 area in absence of SynCAM 1. In agreement, mossy fiber refinement in CA3 was impaired in SynCAM 1 KO mice. Mossy fibers make excitatory inputs onto postsynaptic specializations of CA3 pyramidal neurons termed thorny excrescences and these structures were smaller in the absence of SynCAM 1. However, the most prevalent targets of mossy fibers are GABAergic interneurons and SynCAM 1 loss unexpectedly reduced the number of excitatory terminals onto parvalbumin (PV)-positive interneurons in CA3. SynCAM 1 KO mice additionally exhibited lower postsynaptic GluA1 expression in these PV-positive interneurons. These synaptic imbalances in SynCAM 1 KO mice resulted in CA3 disinhibition, in agreement with reduced feedforward inhibition in this network in the absence of SynCAM 1-dependent excitatory drive onto interneurons. In turn, mice lacking SynCAM 1 were impaired in memory tasks involving CA3. Our results support that SynCAM 1 modulates excitatory mossy fiber inputs onto both interneurons and principal neurons in the hippocampal CA3 area to balance network excitability. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT This study advances our understanding of synapse-organizing mechanisms on two levels. First, the data support that synaptogenic proteins guide connectivity and can function in distinct brain regions even if they are

  5. Regulation of synaptic MAPK/ERK phosphorylation in the rat striatum and medial prefrontal cortex by dopamine and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Xue, Bing; Mao, Li-Min; Jin, Dao-Zhong; Wang, John Q

    2015-10-01

    Dopamine and acetylcholine are two principal transmitters in the striatum and are usually balanced to modulate local neural activity and to maintain striatal homeostasis. This study investigates the role of dopamine and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the regulation of a central signaling protein, i.e., the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK). We focus on the synaptic pool of MAPKs because of the fact that these kinases reside in peripheral synaptic structures in addition to their somatic locations. We show that a systemic injection of dopamine D1 receptor (D1R) agonist SKF81297 enhances phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERKs), a prototypic subclass of MAPKs, in the adult rat striatum. Similar results were observed in another dopamine-responsive region, the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). The dopamine D2 receptor agonist quinpirole had no such effects. Pretreatment with a positive allosteric modulator (PAM) of muscarinic acetylcholine M4 receptors (M4Rs), VU0152100, attenuated the D1R agonist-stimulated ERK phosphorylation in the two regions, whereas the PAM itself did not alter basal ERK phosphorylation. All drug treatments had no effect on phosphorylation of c-Jun N-terminal kinases (JNKs), another MAPK subclass, in the striatum and mPFC. These results demonstrate that dopamine and acetylcholine are integrated to control synaptic ERK but not JNK activation in striatal and mPFC neurons in vivo. Activation of M4Rs exerts an inhibitory effect on the D1R-mediated upregulation of synaptic ERK phosphorylation.

  6. A targeted glycan-related gene screen reveals heparan sulfate proteoglycan sulfation regulates WNT and BMP trans-synaptic signaling.

    PubMed

    Dani, Neil; Nahm, Minyeop; Lee, Seungbok; Broadie, Kendal

    2012-01-01

    A Drosophila transgenic RNAi screen targeting the glycan genome, including all N/O/GAG-glycan biosynthesis/modification enzymes and glycan-binding lectins, was conducted to discover novel glycan functions in synaptogenesis. As proof-of-product, we characterized functionally paired heparan sulfate (HS) 6-O-sulfotransferase (hs6st) and sulfatase (sulf1), which bidirectionally control HS proteoglycan (HSPG) sulfation. RNAi knockdown of hs6st and sulf1 causes opposite effects on functional synapse development, with decreased (hs6st) and increased (sulf1) neurotransmission strength confirmed in null mutants. HSPG co-receptors for WNT and BMP intercellular signaling, Dally-like Protein and Syndecan, are differentially misregulated in the synaptomatrix of these mutants. Consistently, hs6st and sulf1 nulls differentially elevate both WNT (Wingless; Wg) and BMP (Glass Bottom Boat; Gbb) ligand abundance in the synaptomatrix. Anterograde Wg signaling via Wg receptor dFrizzled2 C-terminus nuclear import and retrograde Gbb signaling via synaptic MAD phosphorylation and nuclear import are differentially activated in hs6st and sulf1 mutants. Consequently, transcriptional control of presynaptic glutamate release machinery and postsynaptic glutamate receptors is bidirectionally altered in hs6st and sulf1 mutants, explaining the bidirectional change in synaptic functional strength. Genetic correction of the altered WNT/BMP signaling restores normal synaptic development in both mutant conditions, proving that altered trans-synaptic signaling causes functional differentiation defects.

  7. dFMRP and Caprin, translational regulators of synaptic plasticity, control the cell cycle at the Drosophila mid-blastula transition

    PubMed Central

    Papoulas, Ophelia; Monzo, Kathryn F.; Cantin, Greg T.; Ruse, Cristian; Yates, John R.; Ryu, Young Hee; Sisson, John C.

    2010-01-01

    The molecular mechanisms driving the conserved metazoan developmental shift referred to as the mid-blastula transition (MBT) remain mysterious. Typically, cleavage divisions give way to longer asynchronous cell cycles with the acquisition of a gap phase. In Drosophila, rapid synchronous nuclear divisions must pause at the MBT to allow the formation of a cellular blastoderm through a special form of cytokinesis termed cellularization. Drosophila Fragile X mental retardation protein (dFMRP; FMR1), a transcript-specific translational regulator, is required for cellularization. The role of FMRP has been most extensively studied in the nervous system because the loss of FMRP activity in neurons causes the misexpression of specific mRNAs required for synaptic plasticity, resulting in mental retardation and autism in humans. Here, we show that in the early embryo dFMRP associates specifically with Caprin, another transcript-specific translational regulator implicated in synaptic plasticity, and with eIF4G, a key regulator of translational initiation. dFMRP and Caprin collaborate to control the cell cycle at the MBT by directly mediating the normal repression of maternal Cyclin B mRNA and the activation of zygotic frühstart mRNA. These findings identify two new targets of dFMRP regulation and implicate conserved translational regulatory mechanisms in processes as diverse as learning, memory and early embryonic development. PMID:21068064

  8. Age- and hormone-regulation of opioid peptides and synaptic proteins in the rat dorsal hippocampal formation.

    PubMed

    Williams, Tanya J; Mitterling, Katherine L; Thompson, Louisa I; Torres-Reveron, Annelyn; Waters, Elizabeth M; McEwen, Bruce S; Gore, Andrea C; Milner, Teresa A

    2011-03-16

    Circulating estrogen levels and hippocampal-dependent cognitive functions decline with aging. Moreover, the responses of hippocampal synaptic structure to estrogens differ between aged and young rats. We recently reported that estrogens increase levels of post-synaptic proteins, including PSD-95, and opioid peptides leu-enkephalin and dynorphin in the hippocampus of young animals. However, the influence of ovarian hormones on synaptic protein and opioid peptide levels in the aging hippocampus is understudied. Here, young (3- to 5-month-old), middle-aged (9- to 12-month-old), and aged (about 22-month-old) female rats were ovariectomized and then, 4 weeks later, subcutaneously implanted with a silastic capsule containing vehicle or 17β-estradiol. After 48 h, rats were subcutaneously injected with progesterone or vehicle and sacrificed 1 day later. Coronal sections through the dorsal hippocampus were processed for quantitative peroxidase immunohistochemistry of leu-enkephalin, dynorphin, synaptophysin, and PSD-95. With age, females showed opposing changes in leu-enkephalin and dynorphin levels in the mossy fiber pathway, particularly within the hilus, and regionally specific changes in synaptic protein levels. 17β-estradiol, with or without progesterone, altered leu-enkephalin levels in the dentate gyrus and synaptophysin levels in the CA1 of young but not middle-aged or aged females. Additionally, 17β-estradiol decreased synaptophysin levels in the CA3 of middle-aged females. Our results support and extend previous findings indicating 17β-estradiol modulation of hippocampal opioid peptides and synaptic proteins while demonstrating regional and age-specific effects. Moreover, they lend credence to the "window of opportunity" hypothesis during which hormone replacement can modulate hippocampal structure and circuitry to improve cognitive outcomes.

  9. The regulation of synaptic vesicle recycling by cGMP-dependent protein kinase type II in cerebellar granule cells under strong and sustained stimulation.

    PubMed

    Collado-Alsina, Andrea; Ramírez-Franco, Jorge; Sánchez-Prieto, José; Torres, Magdalena

    2014-06-25

    From the early periods of neurogenesis and migration, up until synaptogenesis, both nitric oxide (NO) and its downstream messenger, cGMP, are thought to influence the development of neurons. The NO/cGMP/cGMP-dependent protein kinase (cGK) pathway regulates the clustering and recruitment of synaptic proteins and vesicles to the synapse, adjusting the exoendocytic cycle to the intensity of activity and accelerating endocytosis following large-scale exocytosis. Here, we show that blockage of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor impairs the cycling of synaptic vesicles in a subset of boutons on cerebellar granule cells, an effect that was reversed by increasing cGMP. Furthermore, we demonstrate that presynaptic cGK type II (cGKII) plays a major role in this process. Using the FM1-43 dye to track vesicle recycling, we found that knockdown of cGKII and/or the application of a cGK inhibitor reduced the efficiency of synaptic vesicle recycling to a similar extent. Likewise, in cerebellar granule cells transfected with vGlut1-pHluorin to follow the exoendocytotic cycle, application of a cGK inhibitor slowed vesicle endocytosis when exocytosis was accelerated through strong and sustained stimulation. Additionally, ultrastructural analysis showed that cGKII knockdown or inhibition favored the formation of endosomal-like structures after strong and sustained stimulation. We conclude that cGKII controls the homeostatic balance of vesicle exocytosis and endocytosis in synaptic boutons of rat cerebellar granule cells.

  10. The brain-tumor related protein podoplanin regulates synaptic plasticity and hippocampus-dependent learning and memory

    PubMed Central

    Cicvaric, Ana; Yang, Jiaye; Krieger, Sigurd; Khan, Deeba; Kim, Eun-Jung; Dominguez-Rodriguez, Manuel; Cabatic, Maureen; Molz, Barbara; Acevedo Aguilar, Juan Pablo; Milicevic, Radoslav; Smani, Tarik; Breuss, Johannes M.; Kerjaschki, Dontscho; Pollak, Daniela D.; Uhrin, Pavel; Monje, Francisco J.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Introduction: Podoplanin is a cell-surface glycoprotein constitutively expressed in the brain and implicated in human brain tumorigenesis. The intrinsic function of podoplanin in brain neurons remains however uncharacterized. Materials and methods: Using an established podoplanin-knockout mouse model and electrophysiological, biochemical, and behavioral approaches, we investigated the brain neuronal role of podoplanin. Results: Ex-vivo electrophysiology showed that podoplanin deletion impairs dentate gyrus synaptic strengthening. In vivo, podoplanin deletion selectively impaired hippocampus-dependent spatial learning and memory without affecting amygdala-dependent cued fear conditioning. In vitro, neuronal overexpression of podoplanin promoted synaptic activity and neuritic outgrowth whereas podoplanin-deficient neurons exhibited stunted outgrowth and lower levels of p-Ezrin, TrkA, and CREB in response to nerve growth factor (NGF). Surface Plasmon Resonance data further indicated a physical interaction between podoplanin and NGF. Discussion: This work proposes podoplanin as a novel component of the neuronal machinery underlying neuritogenesis, synaptic plasticity, and hippocampus-dependent memory functions. The existence of a relevant cross-talk between podoplanin and the NGF/TrkA signaling pathway is also for the first time proposed here, thus providing a novel molecular complex as a target for future multidisciplinary studies of the brain function in the physiology and the pathology.Key messagesPodoplanin, a protein linked to the promotion of human brain tumors, is required in vivo for proper hippocampus-dependent learning and memory functions.Deletion of podoplanin selectively impairs activity-dependent synaptic strengthening at the neurogenic dentate-gyrus and hampers neuritogenesis and phospho Ezrin, TrkA and CREB protein levels upon NGF stimulation.Surface plasmon resonance data indicates a physical interaction between podoplanin and NGF. On these

  11. Caffeine-mediated BDNF release regulates long-term synaptic plasticity through activation of IRS2 signaling.

    PubMed

    Lao-Peregrín, Cristina; Ballesteros, Jesús Javier; Fernández, Miriam; Zamora-Moratalla, Alfonsa; Saavedra, Ana; Gómez Lázaro, María; Pérez-Navarro, Esther; Burks, Deborah; Martín, Eduardo D

    2016-07-25

    Caffeine has cognitive-enhancing properties with effects on learning and memory, concentration, arousal and mood. These effects imply changes at circuital and synaptic level, but the mechanism by which caffeine modifies synaptic plasticity remains elusive. Here we report that caffeine, at concentrations representing moderate to high levels of consumption in humans, induces an NMDA receptor-independent form of LTP (CAF LTP) in the CA1 region of the hippocampus by promoting calcium-dependent secretion of BDNF, which subsequently activates TrkB-mediated signaling required for the expression of CAF LTP. Our data include the novel observation that insulin receptor substrate 2 (IRS2) is phosphorylated during induction of CAF LTP, a process that requires cytosolic free Ca(2+) . Consistent with the involvement of IRS2 signals in caffeine-mediated synaptic plasticity, phosphorylation of Akt (Ser473) in response to LTP induction is defective in Irs2(-/-) mice, demonstrating that these plasticity changes are associated with downstream targets of the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway. These findings indicate that TrkB-IRS2 signals are essential for activation of PI3K during the induction of LTP by caffeine.

  12. Translational control by eIF2α phosphorylation regulates vulnerability to the synaptic and behavioral effects of cocaine.

    PubMed

    Huang, Wei; Placzek, Andon N; Viana Di Prisco, Gonzalo; Khatiwada, Sanjeev; Sidrauski, Carmela; Krnjević, Krešimir; Walter, Peter; Dani, John A; Costa-Mattioli, Mauro

    2016-03-01

    Adolescents are especially prone to drug addiction, but the underlying biological basis of their increased vulnerability remains unknown. We reveal that translational control by phosphorylation of the translation initiation factor eIF2α (p-eIF2α) accounts for adolescent hypersensitivity to cocaine. In adolescent (but not adult) mice, a low dose of cocaine reduced p-eIF2α in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), potentiated synaptic inputs to VTA dopaminergic neurons, and induced drug-reinforced behavior. Like adolescents, adult mice with reduced p-eIF2α-mediated translational control were more susceptible to cocaine-induced synaptic potentiation and behavior. Conversely, like adults, adolescent mice with increased p-eIF2α became more resistant to cocaine's effects. Accordingly, metabotropic glutamate receptor-mediated long-term depression (mGluR-LTD)-whose disruption is postulated to increase vulnerability to drug addiction-was impaired in both adolescent mice and adult mice with reduced p-eIF2α mediated translation. Thus, during addiction, cocaine hijacks translational control by p-eIF2α, initiating synaptic potentiation and addiction-related behaviors. These insights may hold promise for new treatments for addiction.

  13. Translational control by eIF2α phosphorylation regulates vulnerability to the synaptic and behavioral effects of cocaine

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Wei; Placzek, Andon N; Viana Di Prisco, Gonzalo; Khatiwada, Sanjeev; Sidrauski, Carmela; Krnjević, Krešimir; Walter, Peter; Dani, John A; Costa-Mattioli, Mauro

    2016-01-01

    Adolescents are especially prone to drug addiction, but the underlying biological basis of their increased vulnerability remains unknown. We reveal that translational control by phosphorylation of the translation initiation factor eIF2α (p-eIF2α) accounts for adolescent hypersensitivity to cocaine. In adolescent (but not adult) mice, a low dose of cocaine reduced p-eIF2α in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), potentiated synaptic inputs to VTA dopaminergic neurons, and induced drug-reinforced behavior. Like adolescents, adult mice with reduced p-eIF2α-mediated translational control were more susceptible to cocaine-induced synaptic potentiation and behavior. Conversely, like adults, adolescent mice with increased p-eIF2α became more resistant to cocaine's effects. Accordingly, metabotropic glutamate receptor-mediated long-term depression (mGluR-LTD)—whose disruption is postulated to increase vulnerability to drug addiction—was impaired in both adolescent mice and adult mice with reduced p-eIF2α mediated translation. Thus, during addiction, cocaine hijacks translational control by p-eIF2α, initiating synaptic potentiation and addiction-related behaviors. These insights may hold promise for new treatments for addiction. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.12052.001 PMID:26928234

  14. Active dendrites, potassium channels and synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed Central

    Johnston, Daniel; Christie, Brian R; Frick, Andreas; Gray, Richard; Hoffman, Dax A; Schexnayder, Lalania K; Watanabe, Shigeo; Yuan, Li-Lian

    2003-01-01

    The dendrites of CA1 pyramidal neurons in the hippocampus express numerous types of voltage-gated ion channel, but the distributions or densities of many of these channels are very non-uniform. Sodium channels in the dendrites are responsible for action potential (AP) propagation from the axon into the dendrites (back-propagation); calcium channels are responsible for local changes in dendritic calcium concentrations following back-propagating APs and synaptic potentials; and potassium channels help regulate overall dendritic excitability. Several lines of evidence are presented here to suggest that back-propagating APs, when coincident with excitatory synaptic input, can lead to the induction of either long-term depression (LTD) or long-term potentiation (LTP). The induction of LTD or LTP is correlated with the magnitude of the rise in intracellular calcium. When brief bursts of synaptic potentials are paired with postsynaptic APs in a theta-burst pairing paradigm, the induction of LTP is dependent on the invasion of the AP into the dendritic tree. The amplitude of the AP in the dendrites is dependent, in part, on the activity of a transient, A-type potassium channel that is expressed at high density in the dendrites and correlates with the induction of the LTP. Furthermore, during the expression phase of the LTP, there are local changes in dendritic excitability that may result from modulation of the functioning of this transient potassium channel. The results support the view that the active properties of dendrites play important roles in synaptic integration and synaptic plasticity of these neurons. PMID:12740112

  15. Regulation of synaptic transmission at the photoreceptor terminal: a novel role for the cation–chloride co-transporter NKCC1

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Wen; Purpura, Lauren A; Li, Baoqin; Nan, Changlong; Chang, Irene J; Ripps, Harris

    2013-01-01

    The Na+–K+–2Cl− co-transporter type 1 (NKCC1) is localized primarily throughout the outer plexiform layer (OPL) of the distal retina, a synaptic lamina that is comprised of the axon terminals of photoreceptors and the dendrites of horizontal and bipolar cells. Although known to play a key role in development, signal transmission and the gating of sensory signals in other regions of the retina and in the CNS, the contribution of NKCC1 to synaptic transmission within the OPL is largely unknown. In the present study, we investigated the function of NKCC1 at the photoreceptor–horizontal cell synapse by recording the electrical responses of photoreceptors and horizontal cells before and after blocking the activity of the transporter with bumetanide (BMN). Because NKCC1 co-transports 1 Na+, 1 K+ and 2 Cl−, it is electroneutral and its activation had little effect on membrane conductance. However, recordings from postsynaptic horizontal cells revealed that inhibiting NKCC1 with BMN greatly increased glutamate release from both rod and cone terminals. In addition, we found that NKCC1 directly regulates Ca2+-dependent exocytosis at the photoreceptor synapse, raising the possibility that NKCC1 serves to suppress bulk release of glutamate vesicles from photoreceptor terminals in the dark and at light offset. Interestingly, NKCC1 gene and protein expressions were upregulated by light, which we attribute to the light-induced release of dopamine acting on D1-like receptors. In sum, our study reveals a new role for NKCC1 in the regulation of synaptic transmission in photoreceptors. PMID:23090945

  16. Dysfunctional Astrocytic and Synaptic Regulation of Hypothalamic Glutamatergic Transmission in a Mouse Model of Early-Life Adversity: Relevance to Neurosteroids and Programming of the Stress Response

    PubMed Central

    Gunn, Benjamin G.; Cunningham, Linda; Cooper, Michelle A.; Corteen, Nicole L.; Seifi, Mohsen; Swinny, Jerome D.; Lambert, Jeremy J.

    2013-01-01

    Adverse early-life experiences, such as poor maternal care, program an abnormal stress response that may involve an altered balance between excitatory and inhibitory signals. Here, we explored how early-life stress (ELS) affects excitatory and inhibitory transmission in corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF)-expressing dorsal-medial (mpd) neurons of the neonatal mouse hypothalamus. We report that ELS associates with enhanced excitatory glutamatergic transmission that is manifested as an increased frequency of synaptic events and increased extrasynaptic conductance, with the latter associated with dysfunctional astrocytic regulation of glutamate levels. The neurosteroid 5α-pregnan-3α-ol-20-one (5α3α-THPROG) is an endogenous, positive modulator of GABAA receptors (GABAARs) that is abundant during brain development and rises rapidly during acute stress, thereby enhancing inhibition to curtail stress-induced activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical axis. In control mpd neurons, 5α3α-THPROG potently suppressed neuronal discharge, but this action was greatly compromised by prior ELS exposure. This neurosteroid insensitivity did not primarily result from perturbations of GABAergic inhibition, but rather arose functionally from the increased excitatory drive onto mpd neurons. Previous reports indicated that mice (dams) lacking the GABAAR δ subunit (δ0/0) exhibit altered maternal behavior. Intriguingly, δ0/0 offspring showed some hallmarks of abnormal maternal care that were further exacerbated by ELS. Moreover, in common with ELS, mpd neurons of δ0/0 pups exhibited increased synaptic and extrasynaptic glutamatergic transmission and consequently a blunted neurosteroid suppression of neuronal firing. This study reveals that increased synaptic and tonic glutamatergic transmission may be a common maladaptation to ELS, leading to enhanced excitation of CRF-releasing neurons, and identifies neurosteroids as putative early regulators of the stress

  17. Orchestrated Regulation of Nogo Receptors, Lotus, AMPA Receptors and BDNF in an ECT Model Suggests Opening and Closure of a Window of Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Nordgren, Max; Karlsson, Tobias; Svensson, Maria; Koczy, Josefin; Josephson, Anna; Olson, Lars; Tingström, Anders; Brené, Stefan

    2013-01-01

    Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is an efficient and relatively fast acting treatment for depression. However, one severe side effect of the treatment is retrograde amnesia, which in certain cases can be long-term. The mechanisms behind the antidepressant effect and the amnesia are not well understood. We hypothesized that ECT causes transient downregulation of key molecules needed to stabilize synaptic structure and to prevent Ca2+ influx, and a simultaneous increase in neurotrophic factors, thus providing a short time window of increased structural synaptic plasticity. Here we followed regulation of NgR1, NgR3, LOTUS, BDNF, and AMPA subunits GluR1 and GluR2 flip and flop mRNA levels in hippocampus at 2, 4, 12, 24, and 72 hours after a single episode of induced electroconvulsive seizures (ECS) in rats. NgR1 and LOTUS mRNA levels were transiently downregulated in the dentate gyrus 2, 4, 12 and 4, 12, 24 h after ECS treatment, respectively. GluR2 flip, flop and GluR1 flop were downregulated at 4 h. GluR2 flip remained downregulated at 12 h. In contrast, BDNF, NgR3 and GluR1 flip mRNA levels were upregulated. Thus, ECS treatment induces a transient regulation of factors important for neuronal plasticity. Our data provide correlations between ECS treatment and molecular events compatible with the hypothesis that both effects and side effects of ECT may be caused by structural synaptic rearrangements. PMID:24244357

  18. EphrinB-EphB receptor signaling contributes to neuropathic pain by regulating neural excitability and spinal synaptic plasticity in rats.

    PubMed

    Song, Xue-Jun; Zheng, Ji-Hong; Cao, Jun-Li; Liu, Wen-Tao; Song, Xue-Song; Huang, Zhi-Jiang

    2008-09-30

    Bidirectional signaling between ephrins and Eph receptor tyrosine kinases was first found to play important roles during development, but recently has been implicated in synaptic plasticity and pain processing in the matured nervous system. We show that ephrinB-EphB receptor signaling plays a critical role is induction and maintenance of neuropathic pain by regulating neural excitability and synaptic plasticity in the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) and the spinal dorsal horn (DH). Intrathecal application of blocking reagents for EphB-receptors, EphB1-Fc and EphB2-Fc chimeras inhibits the induction and maintenance of nerve injury-induced thermal hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia. These blockers also prevent and suppress the nerve injury-induced hyperexcitability of nociceptive small DRG neurons, sensitization of DH neurons and long-term potentiation (LTP) of synapses between C fibers and DH neurons. In naïve, uninjured animals intrathecal administration of EphB-receptor activators ephrinB1-Fc and ephrinB2-Fc, respectively, induces thermal hypersensitivity and lowers the threshold for LTP, while EphB1-Fc prevents induction of the LTP. Western Blot analysis shows that nerve injury triggers an upregulation of the ephrinB1 and EphB1 receptor proteins in DRG and the spinal cord. These results indicate that, by regulating excitability of nociceptive-related neurons in DRG and DH and the synaptic plasticity at the spinal level, ephrinB-EphB receptor signaling contributes to neuropathic pain. This novel role for ephrinB-EphB receptor signaling suggests that these molecules may be useful therapeutic targets for treating pain after nerve injury.

  19. Diacylglycerol Kinases in the Coordination of Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Dongwon; Kim, Eunjoon; Tanaka-Yamamoto, Keiko

    2016-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity is activity-dependent modification of the efficacy of synaptic transmission. Although, detailed mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity are diverse and vary at different types of synapses, diacylglycerol (DAG)-associated signaling has been considered as an important regulator of many forms of synaptic plasticity, including long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). Recent evidences indicate that DAG kinases (DGKs), which phosphorylate DAG to phosphatidic acid to terminate DAG signaling, are important regulators of LTP and LTD, as supported by the results from mice lacking specific DGK isoforms. This review will summarize these studies and discuss how specific DGK isoforms distinctly regulate different forms of synaptic plasticity at pre- and postsynaptic sites. In addition, we propose a general role of DGKs as coordinators of synaptic plasticity that make local synaptic environments more permissive for synaptic plasticity by regulating DAG concentration and interacting with other synaptic proteins. PMID:27630986

  20. Influence of Academic Self-Regulation, Critical Thinking, and Age on Online Graduate Students' Academic Help-Seeking

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dunn, Karee E.; Rakes, Glenda C.; Rakes, Thomas A.

    2014-01-01

    Academic help-seeking is an invaluable learning strategy that has not yet received much attention in the distance education research literature. The asynchronous nature of distance education and many online courses presents an inherent roadblock to help-seeking. The purpose of this study was to explore the effect of academic self-regulation,…

  1. Bidirectional regulation of synaptic plasticity in the basolateral amygdala induced by the D1-like family of dopamine receptors and group II metabotropic glutamate receptors

    PubMed Central

    Li, Chenchen; Rainnie, Donald G

    2014-01-01

    Competing mechanisms of long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) in principal neurons of the basolateral amygdala (BLA) are thought to underlie the acquisition and consolidation of fear memories, and their subsequent extinction. However, no study to date has examined the locus of action and/or the cellular mechanism(s) by which these processes interact. Here, we report that synaptic plasticity in the cortical pathway onto BLA principal neurons is frequency-dependent and shows a transition from LTD to LTP at stimulation frequencies of ∼10 Hz. At the crossover point from LTD to LTP induction we show that concurrent activation of D1 and group II metabotropic glutamate (mGluR2/3) receptors act to nullify any net change in synaptic strength. Significantly, blockade of either D1 or mGluR2/3 receptors unmasked 10 Hz stimulation-induced LTD and LTP, respectively. Significantly, prior activation of presynaptic D1 receptors caused a time-dependent attenuation of mGluR2/3-induced depotentiation of previously induced LTP. Furthermore, studies with cell type-specific postsynaptic transgene expression of designer receptors activated by designer drugs (DREADDs) suggest that the interaction results via bidirectional modulation of adenylate cyclase activity in presynaptic glutamatergic terminals. The results of our study raise the possibility that the temporal sequence of activation of either presynaptic D1 receptors or mGluR2/3 receptors may critically regulate the direction of synaptic plasticity in afferent pathways onto BLA principal neurons. Hence, the interaction of these two neurotransmitter systems may represent an important mechanism for bidirectional metaplasticity in BLA circuits and thus modulate the acquisition and extinction of fear memory. PMID:25107924

  2. EDITORIAL: Synaptic electronics Synaptic electronics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demming, Anna; Gimzewski, James K.; Vuillaume, Dominique

    2013-09-01

    Conventional computers excel in logic and accurate scientific calculations but make hard work of open ended problems that human brains handle easily. Even von Neumann—the mathematician and polymath who first developed the programming architecture that forms the basis of today's computers—was already looking to the brain for future developments before his death in 1957 [1]. Neuromorphic computing uses approaches that better mimic the working of the human brain. Recent developments in nanotechnology are now providing structures with very accommodating properties for neuromorphic approaches. This special issue, with guest editors James K Gimzewski and Dominique Vuillaume, is devoted to research at the serendipitous interface between the two disciplines. 'Synaptic electronics', looks at artificial devices with connections that demonstrate behaviour similar to synapses in the nervous system allowing a new and more powerful approach to computing. Synapses and connecting neurons respond differently to incident signals depending on the history of signals previously experienced, ultimately leading to short term and long term memory behaviour. The basic characteristics of a synapse can be replicated with around ten simple transistors. However with the human brain having around 1011 neurons and 1015 synapses, artificial neurons and synapses from basic transistors are unlikely to accommodate the scalability required. The discovery of nanoscale elements that function as 'memristors' has provided a key tool for the implementation of synaptic connections [2]. Leon Chua first developed the concept of the 'The memristor—the missing circuit element' in 1971 [3]. In this special issue he presents a tutorial describing how memristor research has fed into our understanding of synaptic behaviour and how they can be applied in information processing [4]. He also describes, 'The new principle of local activity, which uncovers a minuscule life-enabling "Goldilocks zone", dubbed the

  3. Growth factors in synaptic function

    PubMed Central

    Poon, Vivian Y.; Choi, Sojoong; Park, Mikyoung

    2013-01-01

    Synapses are increasingly recognized as key structures that malfunction in disorders like schizophrenia, mental retardation, and neurodegenerative diseases. The importance and complexity of the synapse has fuelled research into the molecular mechanisms underlying synaptogenesis, synaptic transmission, and plasticity. In this regard, neurotrophic factors such as netrin, Wnt, transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), and others have gained prominence for their ability to regulate synaptic function. Several of these factors were first implicated in neuroprotection, neuronal growth, and axon guidance. However, their roles in synaptic development and function have become increasingly clear, and the downstream signaling pathways employed by these factors have begun to be elucidated. In this review, we will address the role of these factors and their downstream effectors in synaptic function in vivo and in cultured neurons. PMID:24065916

  4. Listening to Music: Helping Children Regulate Their Emotions and Improve Learning in the Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foran, Lucille M.

    2009-01-01

    Early education teachers are familiar with using music and rhythm as tools for learning language and building memory. However, the potential of music to help across all special education settings is largely unexplored. Work with music has been widely judged helpful in cases of psychological trauma, yet people do not know why it is helpful. The…

  5. Synaptic Vesicle Exocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Südhof, Thomas C.; Rizo, Josep

    2011-01-01

    Presynaptic nerve terminals release neurotransmitters by synaptic vesicle exocytosis. Membrane fusion mediating synaptic exocytosis and other intracellular membrane traffic is affected by a universal machinery that includes SNARE (for “soluble NSF-attachment protein receptor”) and SM (for “Sec1/Munc18-like”) proteins. During fusion, vesicular and target SNARE proteins assemble into an α-helical trans-SNARE complex that forces the two membranes tightly together, and SM proteins likely wrap around assembling trans-SNARE complexes to catalyze membrane fusion. After fusion, SNARE complexes are dissociated by the ATPase NSF (for “N-ethylmaleimide sensitive factor”). Fusion-competent conformations of SNARE proteins are maintained by chaperone complexes composed of CSPα, Hsc70, and SGT, and by nonenzymatically acting synuclein chaperones; dysfunction of these chaperones results in neurodegeneration. The synaptic membrane-fusion machinery is controlled by synaptotagmin, and additionally regulated by a presynaptic protein matrix (the “active zone”) that includes Munc13 and RIM proteins as central components. PMID:22026965

  6. Coordinated regulation of endocannabinoid-mediated retrograde synaptic suppression in the cerebellum by neuronal and astrocytic monoacylglycerol lipase

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xiaojie; Chen, Yao; Vickstrom, Casey R.; Li, Yan; Viader, Andreu; Cravatt, Benjamin F.; Liu, Qing-song

    2016-01-01

    The endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) mediates retrograde synaptic depression including depolarization-induced suppression of excitation (DSE) and inhibition (DSI). 2-AG is degraded primarily by monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL), which is expressed in neurons and astrocytes. Using knockout mice in which MAGL is deleted globally or selectively in neurons or astrocytes, we investigated the relative contribution of neuronal and astrocytic MAGL to the termination of DSE and DSI in Purkinje cells (PCs) in cerebellar slices. We report that neuronal MAGL plays a predominant role in terminating DSE at climbing fiber (CF) to PC synapses, while both neuronal and astrocytic MAGL significantly contributes to the termination of DSE at parallel fiber (PF) to PC synapses and DSI at putative Stellate cell to PC synapses. Thus, DSE and DSI at different synapses is not uniformly affected by global and cell type-specific knockout of MAGL. Additionally, MAGL global knockout, but not cell type-specific knockout, caused tonic activation and partial desensitization of the CB1 receptor at PF-PC synapses. This tonic CB1 activation is mediated by 2-AG since it was blocked by the diacylglycerol lipase inhibitor DO34. Together, these results suggest that both neuronal and astrocytic MAGL contribute to 2-AG clearance and prevent CB1 receptor over-stimulation in the cerebellum. PMID:27775008

  7. Synaptic P-Rex1 signaling regulates hippocampal long-term depression and autism-like social behavior

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jun; Chai, Anping; Wang, Lifang; Ma, Yuanlin; Wu, Zhiliu; Yu, Hao; Mei, Liwei; Lu, Lin; Zhang, Chen; Yue, Weihua; Xu, Lin; Rao, Yi; Zhang, Dai

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a group of highly inheritable mental disorders associated with synaptic dysfunction, but the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms remain to be clarified. Here we report that autism in Chinese Han population is associated with genetic variations and copy number deletion of P-Rex1 (phosphatidylinositol-3,4,5-trisphosphate-dependent Rac exchange factor 1). Genetic deletion or knockdown of P-Rex1 in the CA1 region of the hippocampus in mice resulted in autism-like social behavior that was specifically linked to the defect of long-term depression (LTD) in the CA1 region through alteration of AMPA receptor endocytosis mediated by the postsynaptic PP1α (protein phosphase 1α)–P-Rex1–Rac1 (Ras-related C3 botulinum toxin substrate 1) signaling pathway. Rescue of the LTD in the CA1 region markedly alleviated autism-like social behavior. Together, our findings suggest a vital role of P-Rex1 signaling in CA1 LTD that is critical for social behavior and cognitive function and offer new insight into the etiology of ASDs. PMID:26621702

  8. Free D-aspartate regulates neuronal dendritic morphology, synaptic plasticity, gray matter volume and brain activity in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Errico, F; Nisticò, R; Di Giorgio, A; Squillace, M; Vitucci, D; Galbusera, A; Piccinin, S; Mango, D; Fazio, L; Middei, S; Trizio, S; Mercuri, N B; Teule, M A; Centonze, D; Gozzi, A; Blasi, G; Bertolino, A; Usiello, A

    2014-01-01

    D-aspartate (D-Asp) is an atypical amino acid, which is especially abundant in the developing mammalian brain, and can bind to and activate N-methyl-D-Aspartate receptors (NMDARs). In line with its pharmacological features, we find that mice chronically treated with D-Asp show enhanced NMDAR-mediated miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents and basal cerebral blood volume in fronto-hippocampal areas. In addition, we show that both chronic administration of D-Asp and deletion of the gene coding for the catabolic enzyme D-aspartate oxidase (DDO) trigger plastic modifications of neuronal cytoarchitecture in the prefrontal cortex and CA1 subfield of the hippocampus and promote a cytochalasin D-sensitive form of synaptic plasticity in adult mouse brains. To translate these findings in humans and consistent with the experiments using Ddo gene targeting in animals, we performed a hierarchical stepwise translational genetic approach. Specifically, we investigated the association of variation in the gene coding for DDO with complex human prefrontal phenotypes. We demonstrate that genetic variation predicting reduced expression of DDO in postmortem human prefrontal cortex is mapped on greater prefrontal gray matter and activity during working memory as measured with MRI. In conclusion our results identify novel NMDAR-dependent effects of D-Asp on plasticity and physiology in rodents, which also map to prefrontal phenotypes in humans. PMID:25072322

  9. Distinctive features of Egr transcription factor regulation and DNA binding activity in CA1 of the hippocampus in synaptic plasticity and consolidation and reconsolidation of fear memory.

    PubMed

    Cheval, Hélène; Chagneau, Carine; Levasseur, Grégoire; Veyrac, Alexandra; Faucon-Biguet, Nicole; Laroche, Serge; Davis, Sabrina

    2012-03-01

    Activity-dependent regulation of Egr1/Zif268, a transcription factor (TF) of the Egr family, is essential for stabilization of dentate gyrus synaptic plasticity and consolidation and reconsolidation of several forms of memory. The gene can be rapidly induced in selective brain circuits after certain types of learning or after recall. Here, we focused on area CA1 and examined regulation of Egr1, Egr2, and Egr3 mRNA and protein, and their DNA binding activity to the Egr response element (ERE) at different times after LTP in vivo and after learning and recall of a fear memory. We found LTP in CA1 leads to rapid induction of the three Egrs, however only Egr1 protein was overexpressed without a co-ordinated change in binding activity, indicating a fundamental difference between CA1 and dentate gyrus LTP. Our investigations in fear memory reveal that both learning and retrieval lead to an increase in binding of constitutively expressed Egr1 and Egr3 to the ERE, but not Egr2. Memory recall was also associated with increased Egr1 protein translation. The nature and temporal dynamics of these changes and tests for interactions between TFs suggest that in addition to ERE-mediated transcription, Egr1 in CA1 may interact with the TF c-Fos to regulate genes via other DNA response elements.

  10. GABAB receptor modulation of synaptic function

    PubMed Central

    Chalifoux, Jason R.; Carter, Adam G.

    2011-01-01

    Neuromodulators have complex effects on both the presynaptic release and postsynaptic detection of neurotransmitters. Here we describe recent advances in our understanding of synaptic modulation by metabotropic GABAB receptors. By inhibiting multivesicular release from the presynaptic terminal, these receptors decrease the synaptic glutamate signal. GABAB receptors also inhibit the Ca2+ permeability of NMDA receptors to decrease Ca2+ signals in postsynaptic spines. These new findings highlight the importance of GABAB receptors in regulating many aspects of synaptic transmission. They also point to novel questions about the spatiotemporal dynamics and sources of synaptic modulation in the brain. PMID:21376567

  11. The Adhesion-GPCR BAI1 Regulates Synaptogenesis by Controlling the Recruitment of the Par3/Tiam1 Polarity Complex to Synaptic Sites

    PubMed Central

    Duman, Joseph G.; Tzeng, Christopher P.; Tu, Yen-Kuei; Munjal, Tina; Schwechter, Brandon; Ho, Tammy Szu-Yu; Tolias, Kimberley F.

    2013-01-01

    Excitatory synapses are polarized structures that primarily reside on dendritic spines in the brain. The small GTPase Rac1 regulates the development and plasticity of synapses and spines by modulating actin dynamics. By restricting the Rac1-guanine nucleotide exchange factor Tiam1 to spines, the polarity protein Par3 promotes synapse development by spatially controlling Rac1 activation. However, the mechanism for recruiting Par3 to spines is unknown. Here, we identify brain-specific angiogenesis inhibitor 1 (BAI1) as a synaptic adhesion GPCR that is required for spinogenesis and synaptogenesis in mice and rats. We show that BAI1 interacts with Par3/Tiam1 and recruits these proteins to synaptic sites. BAI1 knockdown results in Par3/Tiam1 mislocalization and loss of activated Rac1 and filamentous actin from spines. Interestingly, BAI1 also mediates Rac-dependent engulfment in professional phagocytes through its interaction with a different Rac1-guanine nucleotide exchange factor module, ELMO/DOCK180. However, this interaction is dispensable for BAI1’s role in synapse development because a BAI1 mutant that cannot interact with ELMO/DOCK180 rescues spine defects in BAI1-knockdown neurons, whereas a mutant that cannot interact with Par3/Tiam1 rescues neither spine defects nor Par3 localization. Further, overexpression of Tiam1 rescues BAI1 knockdown spine phenotypes. These results indicate that BAI1 plays an important role in synaptogenesis that is mechanistically distinct from its role in phagocytosis. Furthermore, our results provide the first example of a cell surface receptor that targets members of the PAR polarity complex to synapses. PMID:23595754

  12. Neural Cell Adhesion Molecule-Associated Polysialic Acid Regulates Synaptic Plasticity and Learning by Restraining the Signaling through GluN2B-Containing NMDA Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Kochlamazashvili, Gaga; Senkov, Oleg; Grebenyuk, Sergei; Robinson, Catrina; Xiao, Mei-Fang; Stummeyer, Katharina; Gerardy-Schahn, Rita; Engel, Andreas K.; Feig, Larry; Semyanov, Alexey; Suppiramaniam, Vishnu; Schachner, Melitta; Dityatev, Alexander

    2017-01-01

    The neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) is the predominant carrier of α2,8 polysialic acid (PSA) in the mammalian brain. Abnormalities in PSA and NCAM expression are associated with schizophrenia in humans and cause deficits in hippocampal synaptic plasticity and contextual fear conditioning in mice. Here, we show that PSA inhibits opening of recombinant NMDA receptors composed of GluN1/2B (NR1/NR2B) or GluN1/2A/2B (NR1/NR2A/NR2B) but not of GluN1/2A (NR1/NR2A) subunits. Deficits in NCAM/PSA increase GluN2B-mediated transmission and Ca2+ transients in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. In line with elevation of GluN2B-mediated transmission, defects in long-term potentiation in the CA1 region and contextual fear memory in NCAM/PSA-deficient mice are abrogated by application of a GluN2B-selective antagonist. Furthermore, treatment with the glutamate scavenger glutamic-pyruvic transaminase, ablation of Ras-GRF1 (a mediator of GluN2B signaling to p38 MAPK), or direct inhibition of hyperactive p38 MAPK can restore impaired synaptic plasticity in brain slices lacking PSA/NCAM. Thus, PSA carried by NCAM regulates plasticity and learning by inhibition of the GluN2B-Ras-GRF1-p38 MAPK signaling pathway. These findings implicate carbohydrates carried by adhesion molecules in modulating NMDA receptor signaling in the brain and demonstrate reversibility of cognitive deficits associated with ablation of a schizophrenia-related adhesion molecule. PMID:20237287

  13. Human R1441C LRRK2 regulates the synaptic vesicle proteome and phosphoproteome in a Drosophila model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Islam, Md Shariful; Nolte, Hendrik; Jacob, Wright; Ziegler, Anna B; Pütz, Stefanie; Grosjean, Yael; Szczepanowska, Karolina; Trifunovic, Aleksandra; Braun, Thomas; Heumann, Hermann; Heumann, Rolf; Hovemann, Bernhard; Moore, Darren J; Krüger, Marcus

    2016-10-29

    Mutations in leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) cause late-onset, autosomal dominant familial Parkinson's disease (PD) and variation at the LRRK2 locus contributes to the risk for idiopathic PD. LRRK2 can function as a protein kinase and mutations lead to increased kinase activity. To elucidate the pathophysiological mechanism of the R1441C mutation in the GTPase domain of LRRK2, we expressed human wild-type or R1441C LRRK2 in dopaminergic neurons of Drosophila and observe reduced locomotor activity, impaired survival and an age-dependent degeneration of dopaminergic neurons thereby creating a new PD-like model. To explore the function of LRRK2 variants in vivo, we performed mass spectrometry and quantified 3,616 proteins in the fly brain. We identify several differentially-expressed cytoskeletal, mitochondrial and synaptic vesicle proteins (SV), including synaptotagmin-1, syntaxin-1A and Rab3, in the brain of this LRRK2 fly model. In addition, a global phosphoproteome analysis reveals the enhanced phosphorylation of several SV proteins, including synaptojanin-1 (pThr1131) and the microtubule-associated protein futsch (pSer4106) in the brain of R1441C hLRRK2 flies. The direct phosphorylation of human synaptojanin-1 by R1441C hLRRK2 could further be confirmed by in vitro kinase assays. A protein-protein interaction screen in the fly brain confirms that LRRK2 robustly interacts with numerous SV proteins, including synaptojanin-1 and EndophilinA. Our proteomic, phosphoproteomic and interactome study in the Drosophila brain provides a systematic analyses of R1441C hLRRK2-induced pathobiological mechanisms in this model. We demonstrate for the first time that the R1441C mutation located within the LRRK2 GTPase domain induces the enhanced phosphorylation of SV proteins in the brain.

  14. Situation selection is a particularly effective emotion regulation strategy for people who need help regulating their emotions.

    PubMed

    Webb, Thomas L; Lindquist, Kristen A; Jones, Katelyn; Avishai, Aya; Sheeran, Paschal

    2017-03-01

    Situation selection involves choosing situations based on their likely emotional impact and may be less cognitively taxing or challenging to implement compared to other strategies for regulating emotion, which require people to regulate their emotions "in the moment"; we thus predicted that individuals who chronically experience intense emotions or who are not particularly competent at employing other emotion regulation strategies would be especially likely to benefit from situation selection. Consistent with this idea, we found that the use of situation selection interacted with individual differences in emotional reactivity and competence at emotion regulation to predict emotional outcomes in both a correlational (Study 1; N = 301) and an experimental field study (Study 2; N = 125). Taken together, the findings suggest that situation selection is an effective strategy for regulating emotions, especially for individuals who otherwise struggle to do so.

  15. Propofol ameliorates electroconvulsive shock-induced learning and memory impairment by regulation of synaptic metaplasticity via autophosphorylation of CaMKIIa at Thr 305 in stressed rats.

    PubMed

    Ren, Li; Zhang, Fan; Min, Su; Hao, Xuechao; Qin, Peipei; Zhu, Xianlin

    2016-06-30

    Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is an effective treatment for depression, but it can induce learning and memory impairment. Our previous study found propofol (γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptor agonist) could ameliorate electroconvulsive shock (ECS, an analog of ECT to animals)-induced cognitive impairment, however, the underlying molecular mechanisms remain unclear. This study aimed to investigate the effects of propofol on metaplasticity and autophosphorylation of CaMKIIa in stressed rats receiving ECS. Depressive-like behavior and learning and memory function were assessed by sucrose preference test and Morris water test respectively. LTP were tested by electrophysiological experiment, the expression of CaMKIIa, p-T305-CaMKII in hippocampus and CaMKIIα in hippocampal PSD fraction were evaluated by western blot. Results suggested ECS raised the baseline fEPSP and impaired the subsequent LTP, increased the expression of p-T305-CaMKII and decreased the expression of CaMKIIα in hippocampal PSD fraction, leading to cognitive dysfunction in stressed rats. Propofol could down-regulate the baseline fEPSP and reversed the impairment of LTP partly, decreased the expression of p-T305-CaMKII and increased the expression of CaMKIIα in hippocampal PSD fraction and alleviated ECS-induced learning and memory impairment. In conclusion, propofol ameliorates ECS-induced learning and memory impairment, possibly by regulation of synaptic metaplasticity via p-T305-CaMKII.

  16. The interaction of mammalian Class C Vps with nSec-1/Munc18-a and syntaxin 1A regulates pre-synaptic release

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Bong Yoon; Sahara, Yoshinori; Yamamoto, Akitsugu; Kominami, Eiki; Kohsaka, Shinichi; Akazawa, Chihiro . E-mail: akazawa1@ncnp.go.jp

    2006-11-24

    Membrane docking and fusion in neurons is a highly regulated process requiring the participation of a large number of SNAREs (soluble N-ethylmaleimide sensitive factor attachment protein receptors) and SNARE-interacting proteins. We found that mammalian Class C Vps protein complex associated specifically with nSec-1/Munc18-a, and syntaxin 1A both in vivo and in vitro. In contrast, VAMP2 and SNAP-25, other neuronal core complex proteins, did not interact. When co-transfected with the human growth hormone (hGH) reporter gene, mammalian Class C Vps proteins enhanced Ca{sup 2+}-dependent exocytosis, which was abolished by the Ca{sup 2+}-channel blocker nifedipine. In hippocampal primary cultures, the lentivirus-mediated overexpression of hVps18 increased asynchronous spontaneous synaptic release without changing mEPSCs. These results indicate that mammalian Class C Vps proteins are involved in the regulation of membrane docking and fusion through an interaction with neuronal specific SNARE molecules, nSec-1/Munc18-a and syntaxin 1A.

  17. DOE helps the EPA expedite offshore regulations for synthetic-based mud.

    SciTech Connect

    Veil, J. A.; Daly, J. M.; Johnson, N.; Environmental Assessment; EPA

    2000-01-01

    In the mid-1990s, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) took the lead in promoting the use of synthetic-based muds (SBMs) as a pollution-preventing technology and asked the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to revise and clarify its offshore regulations. The EPA, in cooperation with industry work groups, has chosen a streamlined approach to resolve SBM discharge regulations. Current regulations and permits do not adequately address SBM issues, a drilling fluid believed to be environmentally friendly. EPA has instead agreed to modify the offshore and coastal effluent limitation guidelines (ELGs).

  18. Preservice Teachers' Help-Seeking Tendencies and Self-Regulation of Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bembenutty, Hefer

    2006-01-01

    The present study examined the associations between preservice teachers' help seeking tendencies, homework beliefs and behavior, and their individual characteristics such as academic delay of gratification, self-esteem, and self-handicap behavior (N = 63). The results indicated that preservice teachers who have a positive attitude toward help…

  19. Comply with regulations or risk paying hefty fines: ten tips for choosing call recording to help ensure compliance.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Bill

    2014-01-01

    Medical practices are paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines for not complying with various governmental regulations, including a variety of HIPAA rules and credit card compliance. One solution to help reduce this risk and avoid fines is to use call recording to help ensure compliance. This article provides readers with key considerations for choosing and implementing a call recording solution for their medical practices to ensure that it will be compliant with key regulations. These tips include being able to customize call recording policies and procedures for their unique needs; providing secure, private storage; allowing easy access for authorized users; secure sharing of call recordings; regulatory compliance training; disaster recovery; and maintaining an audit-ready and compliant-evident state at all times.

  20. Antibody-mediated Impairment and Homeostatic Plasticity of Autonomic Ganglionic Synaptic Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Zhengbei; Low, Phillip A.; Vernino, Steven

    2010-01-01

    Antibodies against ganglionic acetylcholine receptors (AChR) are implicated as the cause of autoimmune autonomic ganglionopathy (AAG). To characterize ganglionic neurotransmission in an animal model of AAG, evoked and spontaneous excitatory post-synaptic potentials (EPSP) were recorded from neurons in isolated mouse superior cervical ganglia (SCG). In vitro exposure of ganglia to IgG from AAG patients progressively inhibited synaptic transmission. After passive transfer of antibody to mice, evoked EPSP amplitude decreased, and some neurons showed no synaptic responses. EPSP amplitude recovered by day seven despite persistence of ganglionic AChR antibody in the mouse serum. There was a more persistent (at least 14 day) reduction in miniature EPSP amplitude consistent with antibody-mediated reduction in post-synaptic AChR. Although the quantal size was reduced, a progressive increase in the frequency of spontaneous synaptic events occurred, suggesting a compensatory increase in presynaptic efficacy. The quantal size returned to baseline by 21 days while the frequency remained increased for at least four weeks. Ganglionic AChR antibodies cause an impairment of autonomic ganglionic synaptic transmission. Homeostatic plasticity in autonomic neurotransmission could help explain the spontaneous clinical recovery seen in some AAG patients and may also play an important role in regulating normal autonomic reflexes. PMID:20044994

  1. Copper-uptake is critical for the down regulation of synapsin and dynamin induced by neocuproine: modulation of synaptic activity in hippocampal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Castro, Patricio A.; Ramirez, Alejandra; Sepúlveda, Fernando J.; Peters, Christian; Fierro, Humberto; Waldron, Javier; Luza, Sandra; Fuentealba, Jorge; Muñoz, Francisco J.; De Ferrari, Giancarlo V.; Bush, Ashley I.; Aguayo, Luis G.; Opazo, Carlos M.

    2014-01-01

    Extracellular and intracellular copper and zinc regulate synaptic activity and plasticity, which may impact brain functionality and human behavior. We have found that a metal coordinating molecule, Neocuproine, transiently increases free intracellular copper and zinc levels (i.e., min) in hippocampal neurons as monitored by Phen Green and FluoZin-3 fluorescence, respectively. The changes in free intracellular zinc induced by Neocuproine were abolished by the presence of a non-permeant copper chelator, Bathocuproine (BC), indicating that copper influx is needed for the action of Neocuproine on intracellular Zn levels. Moreover, Neocuproine decreased the mRNA levels of Synapsin and Dynamin, and did not affect the expression of Bassoon, tubulin or superoxide dismutase (SOD). Western blot analysis showed that protein levels of synapsin and dynamin were also down regulated in the presence of Neocuproine and that these changes were accompanied by a decrease in calcium transients and neuronal activity. Furthermore, Neocuproine decreased the number of active neurons, effect that was blocked by the presence of BC, indicating that copper influx is needed for the action of Neocuproine. We finally show that Neocuproine blocks the epileptiform-like activity induced by bicuculline in hippocampal neurons. Collectively, our data indicates that presynaptic protein configuration and function of primary hippocampal neurons is sensitive to transient changes in transition metal homeostasis. Therefore, small molecules able to coordinate transition metals and penetrate the blood-brain barrier might modify neurotransmission at the Central Nervous System (CNS). This might be useful to establish therapeutic approaches to control the neuronal hyperexcitabiltity observed in brain conditions that are associated to copper dyshomeotasis such as Alzheimer’s and Menkes diseases. Our work also opens a new avenue to find novel and effective antiepilepsy drugs based in metal coordinating molecules

  2. Child research in South Africa: How do the new regulations help?

    PubMed

    Strode, Ann Elaine; Slack, Catherine May

    2015-11-01

    Child research is governed by legal norms in the National Health Act (2003) and the Regulations. There is increasing harmony between the two on many issues, including the conditions under which children should be enrolled in research. The most striking disjuncture in the ethical-legal framework remains the allowable consent strategy for child research, where the law requires mandatory parental or legal guardian consent for all child research, while ethical guidelines afford research stakeholders the discretion to implement exceptions to this approach in specific justifiable circumstances.

  3. Angelman Syndrome Protein Ube3a Regulates Synaptic Growth and Endocytosis by Inhibiting BMP Signaling in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Kaur, Kuldeep; Zhu, Yong-chuan; Zhao, Hui; Wang, Qifu; Jin, Shan; Zhao, Guoli; Xiong, Zhi-Qi; Zhang, Yong Q.

    2016-01-01

    Altered expression of the E3 ubiquitin ligase UBE3A, which is involved in protein degradation through the proteasome-mediated pathway, is associated with neurodevelopmental and behavioral defects observed in Angelman syndrome (AS) and autism. However, little is known about the neuronal function of UBE3A and the pathogenesis of UBE3A-associated disorders. To understand the in vivo function of UBE3A in the nervous system, we generated multiple mutations of ube3a, the Drosophila ortholog of UBE3A. We found a significantly increased number of total boutons and satellite boutons in conjunction with compromised endocytosis in the neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) of ube3a mutants compared to the wild type. Genetic and biochemical analysis showed upregulation of bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling in the nervous system of ube3a mutants. An immunochemical study revealed a specific increase in the protein level of Thickveins (Tkv), a type I BMP receptor, but not other BMP receptors Wishful thinking (Wit) and Saxophone (Sax), in ube3a mutants. Ube3a was associated with and specifically ubiquitinated lysine 227 within the cytoplasmic tail of Tkv, and promoted its proteasomal degradation in Schneider 2 cells. Negative regulation of Tkv by Ube3a was conserved in mammalian cells. These results reveal a critical role for Ube3a in regulating NMJ synapse development by repressing BMP signaling. This study sheds new light onto the neuronal functions of UBE3A and provides novel perspectives for understanding the pathogenesis of UBE3A-associated disorders. PMID:27232889

  4. Synaptic Vesicle Proteins and Active Zone Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Kittel, Robert J.; Heckmann, Manfred

    2016-01-01

    Neurotransmitter is released from synaptic vesicles at the highly specialized presynaptic active zone (AZ). The complex molecular architecture of AZs mediates the speed, precision and plasticity of synaptic transmission. Importantly, structural and functional properties of AZs vary significantly, even for a given connection. Thus, there appear to be distinct AZ states, which fundamentally influence neuronal communication by controlling the positioning and release of synaptic vesicles. Vice versa, recent evidence has revealed that synaptic vesicle components also modulate organizational states of the AZ. The protein-rich cytomatrix at the active zone (CAZ) provides a structural platform for molecular interactions guiding vesicle exocytosis. Studies in Drosophila have now demonstrated that the vesicle proteins Synaptotagmin-1 (Syt1) and Rab3 also regulate glutamate release by shaping differentiation of the CAZ ultrastructure. We review these unexpected findings and discuss mechanistic interpretations of the reciprocal relationship between synaptic vesicles and AZ states, which has heretofore received little attention. PMID:27148040

  5. Role of extracellular signal-regulated kinase in synaptic transmission and plasticity of a nociceptive input on capsular central amygdaloid neurons in normal and acid-induced muscle pain mice.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Sin-Jhong; Chen, Chien-Chang; Yang, Hsiu-Wen; Chang, Ya-Ting; Bai, Shin-Wen; Chen, Chih-Cheng; Yen, Chen-Tung; Min, Ming-Yuan

    2011-02-09

    Application of phorbol 12,13-diacetate (PDA) caused marked enhancement of synaptic transmission of nociceptive parabrachio-amygdaloid (PBA) input onto neurons of the capsular central amygdaloid (CeAC) nucleus. The potentiation of PBA-CeAC EPSCs by PDA involved a presynaptic protein kinase C (PKC)-dependent component and a postsynaptic PKC-extracellular-regulated kinase (ERK)-dependent component. NMDA glutamatergic receptor (NMDAR)-dependent long-term potentiation (LTP) of PBA-CeAC EPSCs, which was also dependent on the PKC-ERK signaling pathway, was induced by tetanus stimulation at 100 Hz. In slices from mice subjected to acid-induced muscle pain (AIMP), phosphorylated ERK levels in the CeAC increased, and PBA-CeAC synaptic transmission was postsynaptically enhanced. The enhanced PBA-CeAC synaptic transmission in AIMP mice shared common mechanisms with the postsynaptic potentiation effect of PDA and induction of NMDAR-dependent LTP by high-frequency stimulation in normal slices, both of which required ERK activation. Since the CeAC plays an important role in the emotionality of pain, enhanced synaptic function of nociceptive (PBA) inputs onto CeAC neurons might partially account for the supraspinal mechanisms underlying central sensitization.

  6. Anatomical regulation of ice nucleation and cavitation helps trees to survive freezing and drought stress.

    PubMed

    Lintunen, A; Hölttä, T; Kulmala, M

    2013-01-01

    Water in the xylem, the water transport system of plants, is vulnerable to freezing and cavitation, i.e. to phase change from liquid to ice or gaseous phase. The former is a threat in cold and the latter in dry environmental conditions. Here we show that a small xylem conduit diameter, which has previously been shown to be associated with lower cavitation pressure thus making a plant more drought resistant, is also associated with a decrease in the temperature required for ice nucleation in the xylem. Thus the susceptibility of freezing and cavitation are linked together in the xylem of plants. We explain this linkage by the regulation of the sizes of the nuclei catalysing freezing and drought cavitation. Our results offer better understanding of the similarities of adaption of plants to cold and drought stress, and offer new insights into the ability of plants to adapt to the changing environment.

  7. Aquaporin-4 regulates extracellular space volume dynamics during high-frequency synaptic stimulation: a gene deletion study in mouse hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Haj-Yasein, Nadia Nabil; Jensen, Vidar; Østby, Ivar; Omholt, Stig W; Voipio, Juha; Kaila, Kai; Ottersen, Ole P; Hvalby, Øivind; Nagelhus, Erlend A

    2012-05-01

    Little is known about the physiological roles of aquaporin-4 (AQP4) in the central nervous system. AQP4 water channels are concentrated in endfeet membranes of astrocytes but also localize to the fine astrocytic processes that abut central synapses. Based on its pattern of expression, we predicted that AQP4 could be involved in controlling water fluxes and changes in extracellular space (ECS) volume that are associated with activation of excitatory pathways. Here, we show that deletion of Aqp4 accentuated the shrinkage of the ECS that occurred in the mouse hippocampal CA1 region during activation of Schaffer collateral/commissural fibers. This effect was found in the stratum radiatum (where perisynaptic astrocytic processes abound) but not in the pyramidal cell layer (where astrocytic processes constitute but a minor volume fraction). For both genotypes the ECS shrinkage was most pronounced in the pyramidal cell layer. Our data attribute a physiological role to AQP4 and indicate that this water channel regulates extracellular volume dynamics in the mammalian brain.

  8. Up-regulating BDNF with an ampakine rescues synaptic plasticity and memory in Huntington's disease knockin mice.

    PubMed

    Simmons, Danielle A; Rex, Christopher S; Palmer, Linda; Pandyarajan, Vijay; Fedulov, Vadim; Gall, Christine M; Lynch, Gary

    2009-03-24

    Cognitive problems occur in asymptomatic gene carriers of Huntington's disease (HD), and mouse models of the disease exhibit impaired learning and substantial deficits in the cytoskeletal changes that stabilize long-term potentiation (LTP). The latter effects may be related to the decreased production of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) associated with the HD mutation. This study asked whether up-regulating endogenous BDNF levels with an ampakine, a positive modulator of AMPA-type glutamate receptors, rescues plasticity and reduces learning problems in HD (CAG140) mice. Twice-daily injections of a short half-life ampakine normalized BDNF levels, activity-driven actin polymerization in dendritic spines, and LTP stabilization in 8-week-old mutants. Comparable results were obtained in 16-week-old HD mice with more severe LTP deficits. Ampakine treatments had no measurable effect on the decreased locomotor activity observed in the mutants but offset their impairments in long-term memory. Given that ampakines are well tolerated in clinical trials and were effective in this study after brief exposures, these results suggest a novel strategy for chronic treatment of the cognitive difficulties that occur in the early stages of HD.

  9. A Model of Bidirectional Synaptic Plasticity: From Signaling Network to Channel Conductance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Castellani, Gastone C.; Quinlan, Elizabeth M.; Bersani, Ferdinando; Cooper, Leon N.; Shouval, Harel Z.

    2005-01-01

    In many regions of the brain, including the mammalian cortex, the strength of synaptic transmission can be bidirectionally regulated by cortical activity (synaptic plasticity). One line of evidence indicates that long-term synaptic potentiation (LTP) and long-term synaptic depression (LTD), correlate with the phosphorylation/dephosphorylation of…

  10. Norepinephrine transporter inhibition with desipramine exacerbates L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia: role for synaptic dopamine regulation in denervated nigrostriatal terminals.

    PubMed

    Chotibut, Tanya; Fields, Victoria; Salvatore, Michael F

    2014-12-01

    Pharmacological dopamine (DA) replacement with Levodopa [L-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA)] is the gold standard treatment of Parkinson's disease (PD). However, long-term L-DOPA treatment is complicated by eventual debilitating abnormal involuntary movements termed L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia (LID), a clinically significant obstacle for the majority of patients who rely on L-DOPA to alleviate PD-related motor symptoms. The manifestation of LID may in part be driven by excessive extracellular DA derived from L-DOPA, but potential involvement of DA reuptake in LID severity or expression is unknown. We recently reported that in 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-lesioned striatum, norepinephrine transporter (NET) expression increases and may play a significant role in DA transport. Furthermore, L-DOPA preferentially inhibits DA uptake in lesioned striatum. Therefore, we hypothesized that desipramine (DMI), a NET antagonist, could affect the severity of LID in an established LID model. Whereas DMI alone elicited no dyskinetic effects in lesioned rats, DMI + L-DOPA-treated rats gradually expressed more severe dyskinesia compared with L-DOPA alone over time. At the conclusion of the study, we observed reduced NET expression and norepinephrine-mediated inhibition of DA uptake in the DMI + L-DOPA group compared with L-DOPA-alone group in lesioned striatum. LID severity positively correlated with striatal extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase phosphorylation among the three treatment groups, with increased ppERK1/2 in DMI + L-DOPA group compared with the L-DOPA- and DMI-alone groups. Taken together, these results indicate that the combination of chronic L-DOPA and NET-mediated DA reuptake in lesioned nigrostriatal terminals may have a role in LID severity in experimental Parkinsonism.

  11. Polyadenylation helps regulate functional tRNA levels in Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Mohanty, Bijoy K.; Maples, Valerie F.; Kushner, Sidney R.

    2012-01-01

    Here we demonstrate a new regulatory mechanism for tRNA processing in Escherichia coli whereby RNase T and RNase PH, the two primary 3′ → 5′ exonucleases involved in the final step of 3′-end maturation, compete with poly(A) polymerase I (PAP I) for tRNA precursors in wild-type cells. In the absence of both RNase T and RNase PH, there is a >30-fold increase of PAP I-dependent poly(A) tails that are ≤10 nt in length coupled with a 2.3- to 4.2-fold decrease in the level of aminoacylated tRNAs and a >2-fold decrease in growth rate. Only 7 out of 86 tRNAs are not regulated by this mechanism and are also not substrates for RNase T, RNase PH or PAP I. Surprisingly, neither PNPase nor RNase II has any effect on tRNA poly(A) tail length. Our data suggest that the polyadenylation of tRNAs by PAP I likely proceeds in a distributive fashion unlike what is observed with mRNAs. PMID:22287637

  12. The Role of Internet-Specific Epistemic Beliefs and Self-Regulation in High School Students' Online Academic Help Seeking: A Structural Equation Modeling Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cheng, Kun-Hung; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2013-01-01

    Three instruments (i.e., Internet-specific epistemic beliefs, self-regulation, and online academic help seeking questionnaires) were administered to 319 high school students with the aim of understanding the role of Internet specific epistemic beliefs and self-regulation in their online academic help seeking. Through a structure equation modeling…

  13. Cholinergic modulation of large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels regulates synaptic strength and spine calcium in cartwheel cells of the dorsal cochlear nucleus.

    PubMed

    He, Shan; Wang, Ya-Xian; Petralia, Ronald S; Brenowitz, Stephan D

    2014-04-09

    Acetylcholine is a neuromodulatory transmitter that controls synaptic plasticity and sensory processing in many brain regions. The dorsal cochlear nucleus (DCN) is an auditory brainstem nucleus that integrates auditory signals from the cochlea with multisensory inputs from several brainstem nuclei and receives prominent cholinergic projections. In the auditory periphery, cholinergic modulation serves a neuroprotective function, reducing cochlear output under high sound levels. However, the role of cholinergic signaling in the DCN is less understood. Here we examine postsynaptic mechanisms of cholinergic modulation at glutamatergic synapses formed by parallel fiber axons onto cartwheel cells (CWCs) in the apical DCN circuit from mouse brainstem slice using calcium (Ca) imaging combined with two-photon laser glutamate uncaging onto CWC spines. Activation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs) significantly increased the amplitude of both uncaging-evoked EPSPs (uEPSPs) and spine Ca transients. Our results demonstrate that mAChRs in CWC spines act by suppressing large-conductance calcium-activated potassium (BK) channels, and this effect is mediated through the cAMP/protein kinase A signaling pathway. Blocking BK channels relieves voltage-dependent magnesium block of NMDA receptors, thereby enhancing uEPSPs and spine Ca transients. Finally, we demonstrate that mAChR activation inhibits L-type Ca channels and thus may contribute to the suppression of BK channels by mAChRs. In summary, we demonstrate a novel role for BK channels in regulating glutamatergic transmission and show that this mechanism is under modulatory control of mAChRs.

  14. Cholinergic Modulation of Large-Conductance Calcium-Activated Potassium Channels Regulates Synaptic Strength and Spine Calcium in Cartwheel Cells of the Dorsal Cochlear Nucleus

    PubMed Central

    He, Shan; Wang, Ya-Xian; Petralia, Ronald S.

    2014-01-01

    Acetylcholine is a neuromodulatory transmitter that controls synaptic plasticity and sensory processing in many brain regions. The dorsal cochlear nucleus (DCN) is an auditory brainstem nucleus that integrates auditory signals from the cochlea with multisensory inputs from several brainstem nuclei and receives prominent cholinergic projections. In the auditory periphery, cholinergic modulation serves a neuroprotective function, reducing cochlear output under high sound levels. However, the role of cholinergic signaling in the DCN is less understood. Here we examine postsynaptic mechanisms of cholinergic modulation at glutamatergic synapses formed by parallel fiber axons onto cartwheel cells (CWCs) in the apical DCN circuit from mouse brainstem slice using calcium (Ca) imaging combined with two-photon laser glutamate uncaging onto CWC spines. Activation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs) significantly increased the amplitude of both uncaging-evoked EPSPs (uEPSPs) and spine Ca transients. Our results demonstrate that mAChRs in CWC spines act by suppressing large-conductance calcium-activated potassium (BK) channels, and this effect is mediated through the cAMP/protein kinase A signaling pathway. Blocking BK channels relieves voltage-dependent magnesium block of NMDA receptors, thereby enhancing uEPSPs and spine Ca transients. Finally, we demonstrate that mAChR activation inhibits L-type Ca channels and thus may contribute to the suppression of BK channels by mAChRs. In summary, we demonstrate a novel role for BK channels in regulating glutamatergic transmission and show that this mechanism is under modulatory control of mAChRs. PMID:24719104

  15. Helping Kids Help

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heiss, E. Renee

    2008-01-01

    Educators need to help kids help others so that they can help themselves. Volunteering does not involve competition or grades. This is one area where students don't have to worry about measuring up to the expectations of parents, teachers, and coaches. Students participate in charitable work to add another line to a college transcript or job…

  16. L-DOPA Oppositely Regulates Synaptic Strength and Spine Morphology in D1 and D2 Striatal Projection Neurons in Dyskinesia

    PubMed Central

    Suarez, Luz M; Solis, Oscar; Aguado, Carolina; Lujan, Rafael; Moratalla, Rosario

    2016-01-01

    Dopamine depletion in Parkinson's disease (PD) produces dendritic spine loss in striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs) and increases their excitability. However, the synaptic changes that occur in MSNs in PD, in particular those induced by chronic L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA) treatment, are still poorly understood. We exposed BAC-transgenic D1-tomato and D2-eGFP mice to PD and dyskinesia model paradigms, enabling cell type-specific assessment of changes in synaptic physiology and morphology. The distinct fluorescence markers allowed us to identify D1 and D2 MSNs for analysis using intracellular sharp electrode recordings, electron microscopy, and 3D reconstructions with single-cell Lucifer Yellow injections. Dopamine depletion induced spine pruning in both types of MSNs, affecting mushroom and thin spines equally. Dopamine depletion also increased firing rate in both D1- and D2-MSNs, but reduced evoked-EPSP amplitude selectively in D2-MSNs. L-DOPA treatment that produced dyskinesia differentially affected synaptic properties in D1- and D2-MSNs. In D1-MSNs, spine density remained reduced but the remaining spines were enlarged, with bigger heads and larger postsynaptic densities. These morphological changes were accompanied by facilitation of action potential firing triggered by synaptic inputs. In contrast, although L-DOPA restored the number of spines in D2-MSNs, it resulted in shortened postsynaptic densities. These changes in D2-MSNs correlated with a decrease in synaptic transmission. Our findings indicate that L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia is associated with abnormal spine morphology, modified synaptic transmission, and altered EPSP-spike coupling, with distinct effects in D1- and D2-MSNs. PMID:27613437

  17. Exploring Suitable Emotion-Focused Strategies in Helping Students to Regulate Their Emotional State in a Tutoring System: Malaysian Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yusoff, Mohd Zaliman Mohd; Zin, Nor Azan Mat

    2013-01-01

    Introduction: This study explored the suitable emotion-focused strategies in helping students to regulate their emotional state in a self-regulated tutoring system. Method: A questionnaire which consists of 25 different regulation strategies adapted from Way of Coping Questionnaire (WCQ) was used to determine the strategies deployed by the…

  18. Phosphoprotein Regulation of Synaptic Reactivity

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1993-07-07

    carried by Na+, we sought to record the isolated Na+ current by application of external Mg2 +, internal F- and tetraethylammonium ( TEA ), and the...removal of external Na+, and was unaffected by application of external TEA . Application of the c-FAs oleate, linoleate, and linolenate reversibly...90, 1987) by studying LTP in the anesthetized male albino mouse injecting cycloheximide (CXM) or anisomycin (ANI) subcutaneously 30 min or 4 hr prior

  19. Cellular and molecular bases of memory: synaptic and neuronal plasticity.

    PubMed

    Wang, J H; Ko, G Y; Kelly, P T

    1997-07-01

    Discoveries made during the past decade have greatly improved our understanding of how the nervous system functions. This review article examines the relation between memory and the cellular mechanisms of neuronal and synaptic plasticity in the central nervous system. Evidence indicating that activity-dependent short- and long-term changes in strength of synaptic transmission are important for memory processes is examined. Focus is placed on one model of synaptic plasticity called long-term potentiation, and its similarities with memory processes are illustrated. Recent studies show that the regulation of synaptic strength is bidirectional (e.g., synaptic potentiation or depression). Mechanisms involving intracellular signaling pathways that regulate synaptic strength are described, and the specific roles of calcium, protein kinases, protein phosphatases, and retrograde messengers are emphasized. Evidence suggests that changes in synaptic ultrastructure, dendritic ultrastructure, and neuronal gene expression may also contribute to mechanisms of synaptic plasticity. Also discussed are recent findings about postsynaptic mechanisms that regulate short-term synaptic facilitation and neuronal burst-pattern activity, as well as evidence about the subcellular location (presynaptic or postsynaptic) of mechanisms involved in long-term synaptic plasticity.

  20. Synaptic vesicle recycling: steps and principles

    PubMed Central

    Rizzoli, Silvio O

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic vesicle recycling is one of the best-studied cellular pathways. Many of the proteins involved are known, and their interactions are becoming increasingly clear. However, as for many other pathways, it is still difficult to understand synaptic vesicle recycling as a whole. While it is generally possible to point out how synaptic reactions take place, it is not always easy to understand what triggers or controls them. Also, it is often difficult to understand how the availability of the reaction partners is controlled: how the reaction partners manage to find each other in the right place, at the right time. I present here an overview of synaptic vesicle recycling, discussing the mechanisms that trigger different reactions, and those that ensure the availability of reaction partners. A central argument is that synaptic vesicles bind soluble cofactor proteins, with low affinity, and thus control their availability in the synapse, forming a buffer for cofactor proteins. The availability of cofactor proteins, in turn, regulates the different synaptic reactions. Similar mechanisms, in which one of the reaction partners buffers another, may apply to many other processes, from the biogenesis to the degradation of the synaptic vesicle. PMID:24596248

  1. Carbon Nanotube Synaptic Transistor Network for Pattern Recognition.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sungho; Yoon, Jinsu; Kim, Hee-Dong; Choi, Sung-Jin

    2015-11-18

    Inspired by the human brain, a neuromorphic system combining complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) and adjustable synaptic devices may offer new computing paradigms by enabling massive neural-network parallelism. In particular, synaptic devices, which are capable of emulating the functions of biological synapses, are used as the essential building blocks for an information storage and processing system. However, previous synaptic devices based on two-terminal resistive devices remain challenging because of their variability and specific physical mechanisms of resistance change, which lead to a bottleneck in the implementation of a high-density synaptic device network. Here we report that a three-terminal synaptic transistor based on carbon nanotubes can provide reliable synaptic functions that encode relative timing and regulate weight change. In addition, using system-level simulations, the developed synaptic transistor network associated with CMOS circuits can perform unsupervised learning for pattern recognition using a simplified spike-timing-dependent plasticity scheme.

  2. The NO-cGMP-PKG Signaling Pathway Regulates Synaptic Plasticity and Fear Memory Consolidation in the Lateral Amygdala via Activation of ERK/MAP Kinase

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ota, Kristie T.; Pierre, Vicki J.; Ploski, Jonathan E.; Queen, Kaila; Schafe, Glenn E.

    2008-01-01

    Recent studies have shown that nitric oxide (NO) signaling plays a crucial role in memory consolidation of Pavlovian fear conditioning and in synaptic plasticity in the lateral amygdala (LA). In the present experiments, we examined the role of the cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG), a downstream effector of NO, in fear memory consolidation and…

  3. Making Sure Helping Helps.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gartner, Audrey; Riessman, Frank

    1993-01-01

    Benefits to the helper are important to consider in a national-service program, along with the benefits to the recipient. Some suggestions are offered to ensure reciprocity in community service. Democratizing help giving, that is making it available to the widest possible audience, could help remove some of the pitfalls associated with help…

  4. TNF-α Differentially Regulates Synaptic Plasticity in the Hippocampus and Spinal Cord by Microglia-Dependent Mechanisms after Peripheral Nerve Injury.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yong; Zhou, Li-Jun; Wang, Jun; Li, Dai; Ren, Wen-Jie; Peng, Jiyun; Wei, Xiao; Xu, Ting; Xin, Wen-Jun; Pang, Rui-Ping; Li, Yong-Yong; Qin, Zhi-Hai; Murugan, Madhuvika; Mattson, Mark P; Wu, Long-Jun; Liu, Xian-Guo

    2017-01-25

    Clinical studies show that chronic pain is accompanied by memory deficits and reduction in hippocampal volume. Experimental studies show that spared nerve injury (SNI) of the sciatic nerve induces long-term potentiation (LTP) at C-fiber synapses in spinal dorsal horn, but impairs LTP in the hippocampus. The opposite changes may contribute to neuropathic pain and memory deficits, respectively. However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the functional synaptic changes are unclear. Here, we show that the dendrite lengths and spine densities are reduced significantly in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons, but increased in spinal neurokinin-1-positive neurons in mice after SNI, indicating that the excitatory synaptic connectivity is reduced in hippocampus but enhanced in spinal dorsal horn in this neuropathic pain model. Mechanistically, tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) is upregulated in bilateral hippocampus and in ipsilateral spinal dorsal horn, whereas brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is decreased in the hippocampus but increased in the ipsilateral spinal dorsal horn after SNI. Importantly, the SNI-induced opposite changes in synaptic connectivity and BDNF expression are prevented by genetic deletion of TNF receptor 1 in vivo and are mimicked by TNF-α in cultured slices. Furthermore, SNI activated microglia in both spinal dorsal horn and hippocampus; pharmacological inhibition or genetic ablation of microglia prevented the region-dependent synaptic changes, neuropathic pain, and memory deficits induced by SNI. The data suggest that neuropathic pain involves different structural synaptic alterations in spinal and hippocampal neurons that are mediated by overproduction of TNF-α and microglial activation and may underlie chronic pain and memory deficits.

  5. Regulation of hippocampal synaptic plasticity thresholds and changes in exploratory and learning behavior in dominant negative NPR-B mutant rats

    PubMed Central

    Barmashenko, Gleb; Buttgereit, Jens; Herring, Neil; Bader, Michael; Özcelik, Cemil; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise; Braunewell, Karl H.

    2014-01-01

    The second messenger cyclic GMP affects synaptic transmission and modulates synaptic plasticity and certain types of learning and memory processes. The impact of the natriuretic peptide receptor B (NPR-B) and its ligand C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP), one of several cGMP producing signaling systems, on hippocampal synaptic plasticity and learning is, however, less well understood. We have previously shown that the NPR-B ligand CNP increases the magnitude of long-term depression (LTD) in hippocampal area CA1, while reducing the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP). We have extended this line of research to show that bidirectional plasticity is affected in the opposite way in rats expressing a dominant-negative mutant of NPR-B (NSE-NPR-BΔKC) lacking the intracellular guanylyl cyclase domain under control of a promoter for neuron-specific enolase. The brain cells of these transgenic rats express functional dimers of the NPR-B receptor containing the dominant-negative NPR-BΔKC mutant, and therefore show decreased CNP-stimulated cGMP-production in brain membranes. The NPR-B transgenic rats display enhanced LTP but reduced LTD in hippocampal slices. When the frequency-dependence of synaptic modification to afferent stimulation in the range of 1–100 Hz was assessed in transgenic rats, the threshold for both, LTP and LTD induction, was shifted to lower frequencies. In parallel, NPR-BΔKC rats exhibited an enhancement in exploratory and learning behavior. These results indicate that bidirectional plasticity and learning and memory mechanism are affected in transgenic rats expressing a dominant-negative mutant of NPR-B. Our data substantiate the hypothesis that NPR-B-dependent cGMP signaling has a modulatory role for synaptic information storage and learning. PMID:25520616

  6. Molecular mechanisms of synaptic remodeling in alcoholism.

    PubMed

    Kyzar, Evan J; Pandey, Subhash C

    2015-08-05

    Alcohol use and alcohol addiction represent dysfunctional brain circuits resulting from neuroadaptive changes during protracted alcohol exposure and its withdrawal. Alcohol exerts a potent effect on synaptic plasticity and dendritic spine formation in specific brain regions, providing a neuroanatomical substrate for the pathophysiology of alcoholism. Epigenetics has recently emerged as a critical regulator of gene expression and synaptic plasticity-related events in the brain. Alcohol exposure and withdrawal induce changes in crucial epigenetic processes in the emotional brain circuitry (amygdala) that may be relevant to the negative affective state defined as the "dark side" of addiction. Here, we review the literature concerning synaptic plasticity and epigenetics, with a particular focus on molecular events related to dendritic remodeling during alcohol abuse and alcoholism. Targeting epigenetic processes that modulate synaptic plasticity may yield novel treatments for alcoholism.

  7. On the Teneurin track: a new synaptic organization molecule emerges

    PubMed Central

    Mosca, Timothy J.

    2015-01-01

    To achieve proper synaptic development and function, coordinated signals must pass between the pre- and postsynaptic membranes. Such transsynaptic signals can be comprised of receptors and secreted ligands, membrane associated receptors, and also pairs of synaptic cell adhesion molecules. A critical open question bridging neuroscience, developmental biology, and cell biology involves identifying those signals and elucidating how they function. Recent work in Drosophila and vertebrate systems has implicated a family of proteins, the Teneurins, as a new transsynaptic signal in both the peripheral and central nervous systems. The Teneurins have established roles in neuronal wiring, but studies now show their involvement in regulating synaptic connections between neurons and bridging the synaptic membrane and the cytoskeleton. This review will examine the Teneurins as synaptic cell adhesion molecules, explore how they regulate synaptic organization, and consider how some consequences of human Teneurin mutations may have synaptopathic origins. PMID:26074772

  8. On the Teneurin track: a new synaptic organization molecule emerges.

    PubMed

    Mosca, Timothy J

    2015-01-01

    To achieve proper synaptic development and function, coordinated signals must pass between the pre- and postsynaptic membranes. Such transsynaptic signals can be comprised of receptors and secreted ligands, membrane associated receptors, and also pairs of synaptic cell adhesion molecules. A critical open question bridging neuroscience, developmental biology, and cell biology involves identifying those signals and elucidating how they function. Recent work in Drosophila and vertebrate systems has implicated a family of proteins, the Teneurins, as a new transsynaptic signal in both the peripheral and central nervous systems. The Teneurins have established roles in neuronal wiring, but studies now show their involvement in regulating synaptic connections between neurons and bridging the synaptic membrane and the cytoskeleton. This review will examine the Teneurins as synaptic cell adhesion molecules, explore how they regulate synaptic organization, and consider how some consequences of human Teneurin mutations may have synaptopathic origins.

  9. The cell biology of synaptic specificity during development.

    PubMed

    Christensen, Ryan; Shao, Zhiyong; Colón-Ramos, Daniel A

    2013-12-01

    Proper circuit connectivity is critical for nervous system function. Connectivity derives from the interaction of two interdependent modules: synaptic specificity and synaptic assembly. Specificity involves both targeting of neurons to specific laminar regions and the formation of synapses onto defined subcellular areas. In this review, we focus discussion on recently elucidated molecular mechanisms that control synaptic specificity and link them to synapse assembly. We use these molecular pathways to underscore fundamental cell biological concepts that underpin, and help explain, the rules governing synaptic specificity.

  10. Helping Kids Help Themselves.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Good, E. Perry

    This book explains how many of the behaviors that adults use to "help" kids are, at best, ineffective and, at worst, destructive to the adults' relationships with children. Adults traditionally believe that external cues prompt correct behavior--the premise of stimulus-response psychology. However, the ideas discussed here revolve around the…

  11. Neuropeptides as synaptic transmitters.

    PubMed

    Salio, Chiara; Lossi, Laura; Ferrini, Francesco; Merighi, Adalberto

    2006-11-01

    Neuropeptides are small protein molecules (composed of 3-100 amino-acid residues) that have been localized to discrete cell populations of central and peripheral neurons. In most instances, they coexist with low-molecular-weight neurotransmitters within the same neurons. At the subcellular level, neuropeptides are selectively stored, singularly or more frequently in combinations, within large granular vesicles. Release occurs through mechanisms different from classical calcium-dependent exocytosis at the synaptic cleft, and thus they account for slow synaptic and/or non-synaptic communication in neurons. Neuropeptide co-storage and coexistence can be observed throughout the central nervous system and are responsible for a series of functional interactions that occur at both pre- and post-synaptic levels. Thus, the subcellular site(s) of storage and sorting mechanisms into different neuronal compartments are crucial to the mode of release and the function of neuropeptides as neuronal messengers.

  12. Transcriptional coupling of synaptic transmission and energy metabolism: role of nuclear respiratory factor 1 in co-regulating neuronal nitric oxide synthase and cytochrome c oxidase genes in neurons.

    PubMed

    Dhar, Shilpa S; Liang, Huan Ling; Wong-Riley, Margaret T T

    2009-10-01

    Neuronal activity is highly dependent on energy metabolism; yet, the two processes have traditionally been regarded as independently regulated at the transcriptional level. Recently, we found that the same transcription factor, nuclear respiratory factor 1 (NRF-1) co-regulates an important energy-generating enzyme, cytochrome c oxidase, as well as critical subunits of glutamatergic receptors. The present study tests our hypothesis that the co-regulation extends to the next level of glutamatergic synapses, namely, neuronal nitric oxide synthase, which generates nitric oxide as a downstream signaling molecule. Using in silico analysis, electrophoretic mobility shift assay, chromatin immunoprecipitation, promoter mutations, and NRF-1 silencing, we documented that NRF-1 functionally bound to Nos1, but not Nos2 (inducible) and Nos3 (endothelial) gene promoters. Both COX and Nos1 transcripts were up-regulated by depolarizing KCl treatment and down-regulated by TTX-mediated impulse blockade in neurons. However, NRF-1 silencing blocked the up-regulation of both Nos1 and COX induced by KCl depolarization, and over-expression of NRF-1 rescued both Nos1 and COX transcripts down-regulated by TTX. These findings are consistent with our hypothesis that synaptic neuronal transmission and energy metabolism are tightly coupled at the molecular level.

  13. Sleep, synaptic connectivity, and hippocampal memory during early development.

    PubMed

    Huber, Reto; Born, Jan

    2014-03-01

    Sleep, specifically sleep slow-wave activity (SWA), contributes to global synaptic homeostasis in neocortical networks by downscaling synaptic connections that were potentiated during prior wakefulness. In parallel, SWA supports the consolidation of hippocampus-dependent episodic memory, a process linked to local increases in synaptic connectivity. During development, both SWA and episodic memory show parallel time courses: distinct SWA and capabilities to form episodic memory become established during infancy and then profoundly increase across childhood until puberty. We propose that the parallel increases across childhood reflect an imbalance in the underlying regulation of synaptic connectivity during sleep; although memory consolidation favoring synaptic potentiation is enhanced, global synaptic downscaling during sleep SWA does not attain complete recovery of homeostatic baseline levels.

  14. Synaptic plasticity by antidromic firing during hippocampal network oscillations.

    PubMed

    Bukalo, Olena; Campanac, Emilie; Hoffman, Dax A; Fields, R Douglas

    2013-03-26

    Learning and other cognitive tasks require integrating new experiences into context. In contrast to sensory-evoked synaptic plasticity, comparatively little is known of how synaptic plasticity may be regulated by intrinsic activity in the brain, much of which can involve nonclassical modes of neuronal firing and integration. Coherent high-frequency oscillations of electrical activity in CA1 hippocampal neurons [sharp-wave ripple complexes (SPW-Rs)] functionally couple neurons into transient ensembles. These oscillations occur during slow-wave sleep or at rest. Neurons that participate in SPW-Rs are distinguished from adjacent nonparticipating neurons by firing action potentials that are initiated ectopically in the distal region of axons and propagate antidromically to the cell body. This activity is facilitated by GABA(A)-mediated depolarization of axons and electrotonic coupling. The possible effects of antidromic firing on synaptic strength are unknown. We find that facilitation of spontaneous SPW-Rs in hippocampal slices by increasing gap-junction coupling or by GABA(A)-mediated axon depolarization resulted in a reduction of synaptic strength, and electrical stimulation of axons evoked a widespread, long-lasting synaptic depression. Unlike other forms of synaptic plasticity, this synaptic depression is not dependent upon synaptic input or glutamate receptor activation, but rather requires L-type calcium channel activation and functional gap junctions. Synaptic stimulation delivered after antidromic firing, which was otherwise too weak to induce synaptic potentiation, triggered a long-lasting increase in synaptic strength. Rescaling synaptic weights in subsets of neurons firing antidromically during SPW-Rs might contribute to memory consolidation by sharpening specificity of subsequent synaptic input and promoting incorporation of novel information.

  15. Interference of the complex between NCS-1 and Ric8a with phenothiazines regulates synaptic function and is an approach for fragile X syndrome.

    PubMed

    Mansilla, Alicia; Chaves-Sanjuan, Antonio; Campillo, Nuria E; Semelidou, Ourania; Martínez-González, Loreto; Infantes, Lourdes; González-Rubio, Juana María; Gil, Carmen; Conde, Santiago; Skoulakis, Efthimios M C; Ferrús, Alberto; Martínez, Ana; Sánchez-Barrena, María José

    2017-02-07

    The protein complex formed by the Ca(2+) sensor neuronal calcium sensor 1 (NCS-1) and the guanine exchange factor protein Ric8a coregulates synapse number and probability of neurotransmitter release, emerging as a potential therapeutic target for diseases affecting synapses, such as fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most common heritable autism disorder. Using crystallographic data and the virtual screening of a chemical library, we identified a set of heterocyclic small molecules as potential inhibitors of the NCS-1/Ric8a interaction. The aminophenothiazine FD44 interferes with NCS-1/Ric8a binding, and it restores normal synapse number and associative learning in a Drosophila FXS model. The synaptic effects elicited by FD44 feeding are consistent with the genetic manipulation of NCS-1. The crystal structure of NCS-1 bound to FD44 and the structure-function studies performed with structurally close analogs explain the FD44 specificity and the mechanism of inhibition, in which the small molecule stabilizes a mobile C-terminal helix inside a hydrophobic crevice of NCS-1 to impede Ric8a interaction. Our study shows the drugability of the NCS-1/Ric8a interface and uncovers a suitable region in NCS-1 for development of additional drugs of potential use on FXS and related synaptic disorders.

  16. Visual experience regulates the development of long-term synaptic modifications induced by low-frequency stimulation in mouse visual cortex.

    PubMed

    Sugimura, Taketoshi; Yamamoto, Mariko; Yamada, Kazumasa; Komatsu, Yukio; Yoshimura, Yumiko

    2017-03-08

    Manipulation of visual experience can considerably modify visual responses of visual cortical neurons even in adulthood in the mouse, although the modification is less profound than that observed during the critical period. Our previous studies demonstrated that low-frequency (2Hz) stimulation for 15min applied to layer 4 induces T-type Ca(2+) channel-dependent long-term potentiation (LTP) at excitatory synapses in layer 2/3 neurons of visual cortex during the critical period. In this study, we investigated whether low-frequency stimulation could induce synaptic plasticity in adult mice. We found that 2Hz stimulation induced LTP of extracellular field potentials evoked by stimulation of layer 4 in layer 2/3 in adulthood as during the critical period. LTP in adulthood was blocked by L-type, but not T-type, Ca(2+) channel antagonists, whereas LTP during the critical period was blocked by T-type, but not L-type, Ca(2+) channel antagonists. This developmental change in LTP was prevented by dark rearing. Under pharmacological blockade of GABAA receptors, T-type Ca(2+) channel-dependent LTP occurred, whereas L-type Ca(2+) channel-dependent LTP did not occur. These results suggest that different forms of synaptic plasticity can contribute separately to experience-dependent modification of visual responses during the critical period and in adulthood.

  17. Synaptic transmission at retinal ribbon synapses

    PubMed Central

    Heidelberger, Ruth; Thoreson, Wallace B.; Witkovsky, Paul

    2006-01-01

    The molecular organization of ribbon synapses in photoreceptors and ON bipolar cells is reviewed in relation to the process of neurotransmitter release. The interactions between ribbon synapse-associated proteins, synaptic vesicle fusion machinery and the voltage-gated calcium channels that gate transmitter release at ribbon synapses are discussed in relation to the process of synaptic vesicle exocytosis. We describe structural and mechanistic specializations that permit the ON bipolar cell to release transmitter at a much higher rate than the photoreceptor does, under in vivo conditions. We also consider the modulation of exocytosis at photoreceptor synapses, with an emphasis on the regulation of calcium channels. PMID:16027025

  18. Astrocytes Optimize the Synaptic Transmission of Information

    PubMed Central

    Nadkarni, Suhita; Jung, Peter; Levine, Herbert

    2008-01-01

    Chemical synapses transmit information via the release of neurotransmitter-filled vesicles from the presynaptic terminal. Using computational modeling, we predict that the limited availability of neurotransmitter resources in combination with the spontaneous release of vesicles limits the maximum degree of enhancement of synaptic transmission. This gives rise to an optimal tuning that depends on the number of active zones. There is strong experimental evidence that astrocytes that enwrap synapses can modulate the probabilities of vesicle release through bidirectional signaling and hence regulate synaptic transmission. For low-fidelity hippocampal synapses, which typically have only one or two active zones, the predicted optimal values lie close to those determined by experimentally measured astrocytic feedback, suggesting that astrocytes optimize synaptic transmission of information. PMID:18516277

  19. Astroglial Metabolic Networks Sustain Hippocampal Synaptic Transmission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rouach, Nathalie; Koulakoff, Annette; Abudara, Veronica; Willecke, Klaus; Giaume, Christian

    2008-12-01

    Astrocytes provide metabolic substrates to neurons in an activity-dependent manner. However, the molecular mechanisms involved in this function, as well as its role in synaptic transmission, remain unclear. Here, we show that the gap-junction subunit proteins connexin 43 and 30 allow intercellular trafficking of glucose and its metabolites through astroglial networks. This trafficking is regulated by glutamatergic synaptic activity mediated by AMPA receptors. In the absence of extracellular glucose, the delivery of glucose or lactate to astrocytes sustains glutamatergic synaptic transmission and epileptiform activity only when they are connected by gap junctions. These results indicate that astroglial gap junctions provide an activity-dependent intercellular pathway for the delivery of energetic metabolites from blood vessels to distal neurons.

  20. Study of Relationship Between Illness Perception and Delay in Seeking Help for Breast Cancer Patients Based on Leventhal's Self-Regulation Model.

    PubMed

    Attari, Seyedeh Maryam; Ozgoli, Giti; Solhi, Mahnaz; Alavi Majd, Hamid

    2016-01-01

    One of the major causes of morbidity and mortality in breast cancer patients is delay in seeking help. Leventhal's self-regulation model provides an appropriate framework to assess delay in seeking help. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between "illness perception" and "help seeking delay" in breast cancer patients based on Leventhal's self-regulation model. In this correlational descriptive study with convenience sampling conducted in 2013, participants were 120 women with breast cancer who were diagnosed in the last year and referred to chemotherapy and radiotherapy centers in Rasht, Iran. Data collection scales included demographic data, Revised Illness Perception Questionnaire (IPQ-R)and a researcher made questionnaire to measure the delay in seeking help. Pre-hospital delay (help seeking delay) was evaluated in 3 phases (assessment, disease, behavior). The data were analyzed using SPSS-19. The mean (SD) age calculated for the patients was 47.3±10.2. Some 43% of the patients had a high school or higher education level and 82% were married. The "pre-hospital delay" was reported ≥3 months. Logistic regression analysis showed that none of the illness perception components were correlated with appraisal and behavioral delay phases. In the illness delay phase, "time line" (p-value =0.04) and "risk factors"(p-value=0.03) had significant effects on reducing and "psychological attributions" had significant effects on increasing the delay (p-value =0.01). "Illness coherence" was correlated with decreased pre-hospital patient delay (p-value<0.01). Women's perceptions of breast cancer influences delay in seeking help. In addition to verifying the validity of Leventhal's self-regulation model in explaining delay in seeking help, the results signify the importance of the "illness delay phase" (decision to seek help) and educational interventions-counseling for women in the community.

  1. Modeling synaptic transmission of the tripartite synapse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadkarni, Suhita; Jung, Peter

    2007-03-01

    The tripartite synapse denotes the junction of a pre- and postsynaptic neuron modulated by a synaptic astrocyte. Enhanced transmission probability and frequency of the postsynaptic current-events are among the significant effects of the astrocyte on the synapse as experimentally characterized by several groups. In this paper we provide a mathematical framework for the relevant synaptic interactions between neurons and astrocytes that can account quantitatively for both the astrocytic effects on the synaptic transmission and the spontaneous postsynaptic events. Inferred from experiments, the model assumes that glutamate released by the astrocytes in response to synaptic activity regulates store-operated calcium in the presynaptic terminal. This source of calcium is distinct from voltage-gated calcium influx and accounts for the long timescale of facilitation at the synapse seen in correlation with calcium activity in the astrocytes. Our model predicts the inter-event interval distribution of spontaneous current activity mediated by a synaptic astrocyte and provides an additional insight into a novel mechanism for plasticity in which a low fidelity synapse gets transformed into a high fidelity synapse via astrocytic coupling.

  2. Expression, synaptic localization, and developmental regulation of Ack1/Pyk1, a cytoplasmic tyrosine kinase highly expressed in the developing and adult brain.

    PubMed

    Ureña, Jesús Mariano; La Torre, Anna; Martínez, Albert; Lowenstein, Eve; Franco, Neus; Winsky-Sommerer, Raphaelle; Fontana, Xavier; Casaroli-Marano, Ricardo; Ibáñez-Sabio, Miguel Angel; Pascual, Marta; Del Rio, José Antonio; de Lecea, Luis; Soriano, Eduardo

    2005-09-19

    Cytosolic tyrosine kinases play a critical role both in neural development and in adult brain function and plasticity. Here we isolated a cDNA with high homology to human Ack1 and mouse Tnk2. This cDNA directs the expression of a 125-kD protein that can be autophosphorylated in tyrosines. Initially, this clone was named Pyk1 for proline-rich tyrosine kinase (Lev et al., 1995); however, since it corresponds to the mouse homolog of Ack1, here we called it Ack1/Pyk1. In this study we show that Ack1/Pyk1 mRNA and protein is highly expressed in the developing and adult brain. The highest levels of Ack1/Pyk1 expression were detected in the hippocampus, neocortex, and cerebellum. Electron microscopy studies showed that Ack1/Pyk1 protein is expressed in these regions both at dendritic spines and presynaptic axon terminals, indicating a role in synaptic function. Furthermore, we demonstrate that Ack1/Pyk1 mRNA levels are strongly upregulated by increased neural activity, produced by intraperitoneal kainate injections. During development, Ack1/Pyk1 was also expressed in the proliferative ventricular zones and in postmitotic maturing neurons. In neuronal cultures, Ack1/Pyk1 was detected in developing dendrites and axons, including dendritic tips and growth cones. Moreover, Ack1/Pyk1 colocalized with Cdc42 GTPase in neuronal cultures and coimmunoprecipitated with Cdc42 in HEK 293T cells. Altogether, our findings indicate that Ack1/Pyk1 tyrosine kinase may be involved both in adult synaptic function and plasticity and in brain development.

  3. Structure and function of the amygdaloid NPY system: NPY Y2 receptors regulate excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in the centromedial amygdala.

    PubMed

    Wood, J; Verma, D; Lach, G; Bonaventure, P; Herzog, H; Sperk, G; Tasan, R O

    2016-09-01

    The amygdala is essential for generating emotional-affective behaviors. It consists of several nuclei with highly selective, elaborate functions. In particular, the central extended amygdala, consisting of the central amygdala (CEA) and the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST) is an essential component actively controlling efferent connections to downstream effectors like hypothalamus and brain stem. Both, CEA and BNST contain high amounts of different neuropeptides that significantly contribute to synaptic transmission. Among these, neuropeptide Y (NPY) has emerged as an important anxiolytic and fear-reducing neuromodulator. Here, we characterized the expression, connectivity and electrophysiological function of NPY and Y2 receptors within the CEA. We identified several NPY-expressing neuronal populations, including somatostatin- and calretinin-expressing neurons. Furthermore, in the main intercalated nucleus, NPY is expressed primarily in dopamine D1 receptor-expressing neurons but also in interspersed somatostatin-expressing neurons. Interestingly, NPY neurons did not co-localize with the Y2 receptor. Retrograde tract tracing experiments revealed that NPY neurons reciprocally connect the CEA and BNST. Functionally, the Y2 receptor agonist PYY3-36, reduced both, inhibitory as well as excitatory synaptic transmission in the centromedial amygdala (CEm). However, we also provide evidence that lack of NPY or Y2 receptors results in increased GABA release specifically at inhibitory synapses in the CEm. Taken together, our findings suggest that NPY expressed by distinct populations of neurons can modulate afferent and efferent projections of the CEA via presynaptic Y2 receptors located at inhibitory and excitatory synapses.

  4. Activity-dependent synaptic GRIP1 accumulation drives synaptic scaling up in response to action potential blockade.

    PubMed

    Gainey, Melanie A; Tatavarty, Vedakumar; Nahmani, Marc; Lin, Heather; Turrigiano, Gina G

    2015-07-07

    Synaptic scaling is a form of homeostatic plasticity that stabilizes neuronal firing in response to changes in synapse number and strength. Scaling up in response to action-potential blockade is accomplished through increased synaptic accumulation of GluA2-containing AMPA receptors (AMPAR), but the receptor trafficking steps that drive this process remain largely obscure. Here, we show that the AMPAR-binding protein glutamate receptor-interacting protein-1 (GRIP1) is essential for regulated synaptic AMPAR accumulation during scaling up. Synaptic abundance of GRIP1 was enhanced by activity deprivation, directly increasing synaptic GRIP1 abundance through overexpression increased the amplitude of AMPA miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs), and shRNA-mediated GRIP1 knockdown prevented scaling up of AMPA mEPSCs. Furthermore, knockdown and replace experiments targeting either GRIP1 or GluA2 revealed that scaling up requires the interaction between GRIP1 and GluA2. Finally, GRIP1 synaptic accumulation during scaling up did not require GluA2 binding. Taken together, our data support a model in which activity-dependent trafficking of GRIP1 to synaptic sites drives the forward trafficking and enhanced synaptic accumulation of GluA2-containing AMPAR during synaptic scaling up.

  5. Role of MicroRNA in Governing Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Although synaptic plasticity in neural circuits is orchestrated by an ocean of genes, molecules, and proteins, the underlying mechanisms remain poorly understood. Recently, it is well acknowledged that miRNA exerts widespread regulation over the translation and degradation of target gene in nervous system. Increasing evidence suggests that quite a few specific miRNAs play important roles in various respects of synaptic plasticity including synaptogenesis, synaptic morphology alteration, and synaptic function modification. More importantly, the miRNA-mediated regulation of synaptic plasticity is not only responsible for synapse development and function but also involved in the pathophysiology of plasticity-related diseases. A review is made here on the function of miRNAs in governing synaptic plasticity, emphasizing the emerging regulatory role of individual miRNAs in synaptic morphological and functional plasticity, as well as their implications in neurological disorders. Understanding of the way in which miRNAs contribute to synaptic plasticity provides rational clues in establishing the novel therapeutic strategy for plasticity-related diseases. PMID:27034846

  6. Phosphodiesterase Inhibition to Target the Synaptic Dysfunction in Alzheimer's Disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bales, Kelly R.; Plath, Niels; Svenstrup, Niels; Menniti, Frank S.

    Alzheimer's Disease (AD) is a disease of synaptic dysfunction that ultimately proceeds to neuronal death. There is a wealth of evidence that indicates the final common mediator of this neurotoxic process is the formation and actions on synaptotoxic b-amyloid (Aβ). The premise in this review is that synaptic dysfunction may also be an initiating factor in for AD and promote synaptotoxic Aβ formation. This latter hypothesis is consistent with the fact that the most common risk factors for AD, apolipoprotein E (ApoE) allele status, age, education, and fitness, encompass suboptimal synaptic function. Thus, the synaptic dysfunction in AD may be both cause and effect, and remediating synaptic dysfunction in AD may have acute effects on the symptoms present at the initiation of therapy and also slow disease progression. The cyclic nucleotide (cAMP and cGMP) signaling systems are intimately involved in the regulation of synaptic homeostasis. The phosphodiesterases (PDEs) are a superfamily of enzymes that critically regulate spatial and temporal aspects of cyclic nucleotide signaling through metabolic inactivation of cAMP and cGMP. Thus, targeting the PDEs to promote improved synaptic function, or 'synaptic resilience', may be an effective and facile approach to new symptomatic and disease modifying therapies for AD. There continues to be a significant drug discovery effort aimed at discovering PDE inhibitors to treat a variety of neuropsychiatric disorders. Here we review the current status of those efforts as they relate to potential new therapies for AD.

  7. Dynamic DNA methylation controls glutamate receptor trafficking and synaptic scaling.

    PubMed

    Sweatt, J David

    2016-05-01

    Hebbian plasticity, including long-term potentiation and long-term depression, has long been regarded as important for local circuit refinement in the context of memory formation and stabilization. However, circuit development and stabilization additionally relies on non-Hebbian, homeostatic, forms of plasticity such as synaptic scaling. Synaptic scaling is induced by chronic increases or decreases in neuronal activity. Synaptic scaling is associated with cell-wide adjustments in postsynaptic receptor density, and can occur in a multiplicative manner resulting in preservation of relative synaptic strengths across the entire neuron's population of synapses. Both active DNA methylation and demethylation have been validated as crucial regulators of gene transcription during learning, and synaptic scaling is known to be transcriptionally dependent. However, it has been unclear whether homeostatic forms of plasticity such as synaptic scaling are regulated via epigenetic mechanisms. This review describes exciting recent work that has demonstrated a role for active changes in neuronal DNA methylation and demethylation as a controller of synaptic scaling and glutamate receptor trafficking. These findings bring together three major categories of memory-associated mechanisms that were previously largely considered separately: DNA methylation, homeostatic plasticity, and glutamate receptor trafficking. This review describes exciting recent work that has demonstrated a role for active changes in neuronal DNA methylation and demethylation as a controller of synaptic scaling and glutamate receptor trafficking. These findings bring together three major categories of memory-associated mechanisms that were previously considered separately: glutamate receptor trafficking, DNA methylation, and homeostatic plasticity.

  8. [Memory and synaptic plasticity].

    PubMed

    Maitre, M

    1996-01-01

    Short term memory traces are probably induced by a sustained and specific functional activation of some sensory and/or motor circuits in brain. These modifications, which could concern a large proportion of the brain but especially the limbic areas, are constituted primarily by ionic mechanisms and second messengers cascades induced by the activation of glutamatergic receptors (namely NMDA). In the invertebrate (Drosophilia melanogaster, aplysia), the role of serotonergic receptors seems to be more important. The activated cAMP-dependent and calcium dependent protein kinases target several proteins which are reversibly phosphorylated modifying the synaptic functions which in turn induce potentiated (PLT) or depressed (DLT) post-synaptic responses. These phenomena are at the basis of specific protein neosynthesis which is initiated by several early genes or trancription factor (cfos, zif 268, jun, CREB). Specific mRNA migrate to the potentiated synapse or dendritic spine where activated polyribosomes synthesize trophic factor, adhesion molecules and synaptic constituents. The building of new synaptic contacts and/or the plastic evolution of existing synapses could explain long-term LTP and long-term memory traces.

  9. Synaptic Plasticity onto Dopamine Neurons Shapes Fear Learning.

    PubMed

    Pignatelli, Marco; Umanah, George Kwabena Essien; Ribeiro, Sissi Palma; Chen, Rong; Karuppagounder, Senthilkumar Senthil; Yau, Hau-Jie; Eacker, Stephen; Dawson, Valina Lynn; Dawson, Ted Murray; Bonci, Antonello

    2017-01-18

    Fear learning is a fundamental behavioral process that requires dopamine (DA) release. Experience-dependent synaptic plasticity occurs on DA neurons while an organism is engaged in aversive experiences. However, whether synaptic plasticity onto DA neurons is causally involved in aversion learning is unknown. Here, we show that a stress priming procedure enhances fear learning by engaging VTA synaptic plasticity. Moreover, we took advantage of the ability of the ATPase Thorase to regulate the internalization of AMPA receptors (AMPARs) in order to selectively manipulate glutamatergic synaptic plasticity on DA neurons. Genetic ablation of Thorase in DAT(+) neurons produced increased AMPAR surface expression and function that lead to impaired induction of both long-term depression (LTD) and long-term potentiation (LTP). Strikingly, animals lacking Thorase in DAT(+) neurons expressed greater associative learning in a fear conditioning paradigm. In conclusion, our data provide a novel, causal link between synaptic plasticity onto DA neurons and fear learning.

  10. Modulation of synaptic plasticity by stress hormone associates with plastic alteration of synaptic NMDA receptor in the adult hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Tse, Yiu Chung; Bagot, Rosemary C; Hutter, Juliana A; Wong, Alice S; Wong, Tak Pan

    2011-01-01

    Stress exerts a profound impact on learning and memory, in part, through the actions of adrenal corticosterone (CORT) on synaptic plasticity, a cellular model of learning and memory. Increasing findings suggest that CORT exerts its impact on synaptic plasticity by altering the functional properties of glutamate receptors, which include changes in the motility and function of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid subtype of glutamate receptor (AMPAR) that are responsible for the expression of synaptic plasticity. Here we provide evidence that CORT could also regulate synaptic plasticity by modulating the function of synaptic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs), which mediate the induction of synaptic plasticity. We found that stress level CORT applied to adult rat hippocampal slices potentiated evoked NMDAR-mediated synaptic responses within 30 min. Surprisingly, following this fast-onset change, we observed a slow-onset (>1 hour after termination of CORT exposure) increase in synaptic expression of GluN2A-containing NMDARs. To investigate the consequences of the distinct fast- and slow-onset modulation of NMDARs for synaptic plasticity, we examined the formation of long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) within relevant time windows. Paralleling the increased NMDAR function, both LTP and LTD were facilitated during CORT treatment. However, 1-2 hours after CORT treatment when synaptic expression of GluN2A-containing NMDARs is increased, bidirectional plasticity was no longer facilitated. Our findings reveal the remarkable plasticity of NMDARs in the adult hippocampus in response to CORT. CORT-mediated slow-onset increase in GluN2A in hippocampal synapses could be a homeostatic mechanism to normalize synaptic plasticity following fast-onset stress-induced facilitation.

  11. Persistent inflammation-induced up-regulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) promotes synaptic delivery of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor GluA1 subunits in descending pain modulatory circuits.

    PubMed

    Tao, Wenjuan; Chen, Quan; Zhou, Wenjie; Wang, Yunping; Wang, Lu; Zhang, Zhi

    2014-08-08

    The enhanced AMPA receptor phosphorylation at GluA1 serine 831 sites in the central pain-modulating system plays a pivotal role in descending pain facilitation after inflammation, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. We show here that, in the rat brain stem, in the nucleus raphe magnus, which is a critical relay in the descending pain-modulating system of the brain, persistent inflammatory pain induced by complete Freund adjuvant (CFA) can enhance AMPA receptor-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents and the GluA2-lacking AMPA receptor-mediated rectification index. Western blot analysis showed an increase in GluA1 phosphorylation at Ser-831 but not at Ser-845. This was accompanied by an increase in distribution of the synaptic GluA1 subunit. In parallel, the level of histone H3 acetylation at bdnf gene promoter regions was reduced significantly 3 days after CFA injection, as indicated by ChIP assays. This was correlated with an increase in BDNF mRNA levels and BDNF protein levels. Sequestering endogenous extracellular BDNF with TrkB-IgG in the nucleus raphe magnus decreased AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission and GluA1 phosphorylation at Ser-831 3 days after CFA injection. Under the same conditions, blockade of TrkB receptor functions, phospholipase C, or PKC impaired GluA1 phosphorylation at Ser-831 and decreased excitatory postsynaptic currents mediated by GluA2-lacking AMPA receptors. Taken together, these results suggest that epigenetic up-regulation of BDNF by peripheral inflammation induces GluR1 phosphorylation at Ser-831 sites through activation of the phospholipase C-PKC signaling cascade, leading to the trafficking of GluA1 to pain-modulating neuronal synapses.

  12. Biphasic Regulation of p38 MAPK by Serotonin Contributes to the Efficacy of Stimulus Protocols That Induce Long-Term Synaptic Facilitation

    PubMed Central

    Smolen, Paul; Baxter, Douglas A.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The MAPK isoforms ERK and p38 MAPK are believed to play opposing roles in long-term synaptic facilitation (LTF) induced by serotonin (5-HT) in Aplysia. To fully understand their roles, however, it is necessary to consider the dynamics of ERK and p38 MAPK activation. Previous studies determined that activation of ERK occurred ∼45 min after a 5-min pulse of 5-HT treatment. The dynamics of p38 MAPK activation following 5-HT are yet to be elucidated. Here, the activity of p38 MAPK was examined at different times after 5-HT, and the interaction between the ERK and p38 MAPK pathways was investigated. A 5-min pulse of 5-HT induced a transient inhibition of p38 MAPK, followed by a delayed activation between 25 and 45 min. This activation was blocked by a MAPK kinase inhibitor, suggesting that similar pathways are involved in activation of ERK and p38 MAPK. ERK activity decreased shortly after the activation of p38 MAPK. A p38 MAPK inhibitor blocked this decrease in ERK activity, suggesting a causal relationship. The p38 MAPK activity ∼45 min after different stimulus protocols was also characterized. These data were incorporated into a computational model for the induction of LTF. Simulations and empirical data suggest that p38 MAPK, together with ERK, contributes to the efficacy of spaced stimulus protocols to induce LTF, a correlate of long-term memory (LTM). For example, decreased p38 MAPK activity ∼45 min after the first of two sensitizing stimuli might be an important determinant of an optimal interstimulus interval (ISI) for LTF induction. PMID:28197555

  13. Optical fiber synaptic sensor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pisarchik, A. N.; Jaimes-Reátegui, R.; Sevilla-Escoboza, R.; García-Lopez, J. H.; Kazantsev, V. B.

    2011-06-01

    Understanding neuron connections is a great challenge, which is needed to solve many important problems in neurobiology and neuroengineering for recreation of brain functions and efficient biorobotics. In particular, a design of an optical synapse capable to communicate with neuron spike sequences would be crucial to improve the functionality of neuromimmetic networks. In this work we propose an optical synaptic sensor based on an erbium-doped fiber laser driven by a FitzHung-Nagumo electronic neuron, to connect with another electronic neuron. Two possible optical synaptic configurations are analyzed for optoelectronic coupling between neurons: laser cavity loss modulation and pump laser modulation. The control parameters of the proposed optical synapse provide additional degrees of flexibility to the neuron connection traditionally controlled only by coupling strengths in artificial networks.

  14. Astrocytes Potentiate Synaptic Transmission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadkarni, Suhita

    2005-03-01

    A recent experimental study shows that astrocytes, a subtype of glia, are able to influence the spontaneous activity in the brain via calcium dependent glutamate release. We model the coupling mechanism between an astrocyte and a neuron based on experimental data. This coupling is dynamic and bi-directional, such that the modulations in intracellular calcium concentrations in astrocytes affect neuronal excitability and vice versa via a glutamatergic pathway. We demonstrate through simple neural-glial circuits that increases in the intracellular calcium concentration in astrocytes nearby can enhance spontaneous activity in a neuron, a significant mechanism said to be involved in plasticity and learning. The pattern of this marked increase in spontaneous firing rate in our model quantitatively follows that observed in the experiment. Further, depending on the type of synaptic connections diverging from the neuron, it can either inhibit or excite the ensuing dynamics and potentiate synaptic transmission, thus reinstating the integral role played by astrocytes in normal neuronal dynamics.

  15. Using Computer Supported Collaborative Learning Strategies for Helping Students Acquire Self-Regulated Problem-Solving Skills in Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lazakidou, Georgia; Retalis, Symeon

    2010-01-01

    The main objective of this paper is to investigate the effectiveness of a proposed computer-based instructional method in Primary Education for self-regulated problem solving. The proposed instructional method is based on Sternberg's model of problem solving within an authentic context. It consists of three main phases: observation, collaboration…

  16. Using Self-Regulated Strategy Development to Help High School Students with EBD Summarize Informational Text in Social Studies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ennis, Robin Parks

    2016-01-01

    Students with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD) often struggle to be effective writers. Self-regulated strategy development (SRSD) is one approach to writing instruction that has demonstrated success for students with EBD. However, there is little research exploring its utility to teach writing to students with EBD in social studies. The…

  17. Does a Combination of Metaphor and Pairing Activity Help Programming Performance of Students with Different Self-Regulated Learning Level?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hui, Tie Hui; Umar, Irfan Naufal

    2011-01-01

    This study aims to investigate the effects of metaphors and pairing activity on programming performance of students with different self-regulated-learning (SRL) level. A total of 84 computing students were involved in this seven-week study, and they were randomly assigned either to a group that received a combination of metaphor and pair…

  18. Using Formative Assessment and Self-Regulated Learning to Help Developmental Mathematics Students Achieve: A Multi-Campus Program

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hudesman, John; Crosby, Sara; Ziehmke, Niesha; Everson, Howard; Issac, Sharlene; Flugman, Bert; Zimmerman, Barry; Moylan, Adam

    2014-01-01

    The authors describe an Enhanced Formative Assessment and Self-Regulated Learning (EFA-SRL) program designed to improve the achievement of community college students enrolled in developmental mathematics courses. Their model includes the use of specially formatted quizzes designed to assess both the students' mathematics and metacognitive skill…

  19. Dystroglycan mediates homeostatic synaptic plasticity at GABAergic synapses.

    PubMed

    Pribiag, Horia; Peng, Huashan; Shah, Waris Ali; Stellwagen, David; Carbonetto, Salvatore

    2014-05-06

    Dystroglycan (DG), a cell adhesion molecule well known to be essential for skeletal muscle integrity and formation of neuromuscular synapses, is also present at inhibitory synapses in the central nervous system. Mutations that affect DG function not only result in muscular dystrophies, but also in severe cognitive deficits and epilepsy. Here we demonstrate a role of DG during activity-dependent homeostatic regulation of hippocampal inhibitory synapses. Prolonged elevation of neuronal activity up-regulates DG expression and glycosylation, and its localization to inhibitory synapses. Inhibition of protein synthesis prevents the activity-dependent increase in synaptic DG and GABAA receptors (GABAARs), as well as the homeostatic scaling up of GABAergic synaptic transmission. RNAi-mediated knockdown of DG blocks homeostatic scaling up of inhibitory synaptic strength, as does knockdown of like-acetylglucosaminyltransferase (LARGE)--a glycosyltransferase critical for DG function. In contrast, DG is not required for the bicuculline-induced scaling down of excitatory synaptic strength or the tetrodotoxin-induced scaling down of inhibitory synaptic strength. The DG ligand agrin increases GABAergic synaptic strength in a DG-dependent manner that mimics homeostatic scaling up induced by increased activity, indicating that activation of this pathway alone is sufficient to regulate GABAAR trafficking. These data demonstrate that DG is regulated in a physiologically relevant manner in neurons and that DG and its glycosylation are essential for homeostatic plasticity at inhibitory synapses.

  20. ECM receptors in neuronal structure, synaptic plasticity, and behavior

    PubMed Central

    Kerrisk, Meghan E.; Cingolani, Lorenzo A.; Koleske, Anthony J.

    2015-01-01

    During central nervous system development, extracellular matrix (ECM) receptors and their ligands play key roles as guidance molecules, informing neurons where and when to send axonal and dendritic projections, establish connections, and form synapses between pre- and postsynaptic cells. Once stable synapses are formed, many ECM receptors transition in function to control the maintenance of stable connections between neurons and regulate synaptic plasticity. These receptors bind to and are activated by ECM ligands. In turn, ECM receptor activation modulates downstream signaling cascades that control cytoskeletal dynamics and synaptic activity to regulate neuronal structure and function and thereby impact animal behavior. The activities of cell adhesion receptors that mediate interactions between pre- and post-synaptic partners are also strongly influenced by ECM composition. This chapter highlights a number of ECM receptors, their roles in the control of synapse structure and function, and the impact of these receptors on synaptic plasticity and animal behavior. PMID:25410355

  1. Nanoscale analysis of structural synaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Bourne, Jennifer N.; Harris, Kristen M.

    2011-01-01

    In the 1950’s, transmission electron microscopy was first used to reveal the diversity in synaptic structure and composition in the central nervous system [1;2]. Since then, visualization and reconstruction of serial thin sections have provided three-dimensional contexts in which to understand how synapses are modified with plasticity, learning, and sensory input [3–17]. Three-dimensional reconstruction from serial section electron microscopy (ssEM) has proven invaluable for the comprehensive analysis of structural synaptic plasticity. It has provided the needed nanometer resolution to localize and measure key subcellular structures, such as the postsynaptic density (PSD) and presynaptic vesicles which define a synapse, polyribosomes as sites of local protein synthesis, smooth endoplasmic reticulum (SER) for local regulation of calcium and trafficking of membrane proteins, endosomes for recycling, and fine astroglial processes at the perimeter of some synapses. Thus, ssEM is an essential tool for nanoscale analysis of the cell biological and anatomical modifications that underlie changes in synaptic strength. Here we discuss several important issues associated with interpreting the functional significance of structural synaptic plasticity, especially during long-term potentiation, a widely studied cellular model of learning and memory. PMID:22088391

  2. Dynamic Control of Synaptic Adhesion and Organizing Molecules in Synaptic Plasticity

    SciTech Connect

    Rudenko, Gabby

    2017-01-01

    Synapses play a critical role in establishing and maintaining neural circuits, permitting targeted information transfer throughout the brain. A large portfolio of synaptic adhesion/organizing molecules (SAMs) exists in the mammalian brain involved in synapse development and maintenance. SAMs bind protein partners, formingtrans-complexes spanning the synaptic cleft orcis-complexes attached to the same synaptic membrane. SAMs play key roles in cell adhesion and in organizing protein interaction networks; they can also provide mechanisms of recognition, generate scaffolds onto which partners can dock, and likely take part in signaling processes as well. SAMs are regulated through a portfolio of different mechanisms that affect their protein levels, precise localization, stability, and the availability of their partners at synapses. Interaction of SAMs with their partners can further be strengthened or weakened through alternative splicing, competing protein partners, ectodomain shedding, or astrocytically secreted factors. Given that numerous SAMs appear altered by synaptic activity, in vivo, these molecules may be used to dynamically scale up or scale down synaptic communication. Many SAMs, including neurexins, neuroligins, cadherins, and contactins, are now implicated in neuropsychiatric and neurodevelopmental diseases, such as autism spectrum disorder, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder and studying their molecular mechanisms holds promise for developing novel therapeutics.

  3. Dynamic Control of Synaptic Adhesion and Organizing Molecules in Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Synapses play a critical role in establishing and maintaining neural circuits, permitting targeted information transfer throughout the brain. A large portfolio of synaptic adhesion/organizing molecules (SAMs) exists in the mammalian brain involved in synapse development and maintenance. SAMs bind protein partners, forming trans-complexes spanning the synaptic cleft or cis-complexes attached to the same synaptic membrane. SAMs play key roles in cell adhesion and in organizing protein interaction networks; they can also provide mechanisms of recognition, generate scaffolds onto which partners can dock, and likely take part in signaling processes as well. SAMs are regulated through a portfolio of different mechanisms that affect their protein levels, precise localization, stability, and the availability of their partners at synapses. Interaction of SAMs with their partners can further be strengthened or weakened through alternative splicing, competing protein partners, ectodomain shedding, or astrocytically secreted factors. Given that numerous SAMs appear altered by synaptic activity, in vivo, these molecules may be used to dynamically scale up or scale down synaptic communication. Many SAMs, including neurexins, neuroligins, cadherins, and contactins, are now implicated in neuropsychiatric and neurodevelopmental diseases, such as autism spectrum disorder, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder and studying their molecular mechanisms holds promise for developing novel therapeutics. PMID:28255461

  4. Spine Calcium Transients Induced by Synaptically-Evoked Action Potentials Can Predict Synapse Location and Establish Synaptic Democracy

    PubMed Central

    Meredith, Rhiannon M.; van Ooyen, Arjen

    2012-01-01

    CA1 pyramidal neurons receive hundreds of synaptic inputs at different distances from the soma. Distance-dependent synaptic scaling enables distal and proximal synapses to influence the somatic membrane equally, a phenomenon called “synaptic democracy”. How this is established is unclear. The backpropagating action potential (BAP) is hypothesised to provide distance-dependent information to synapses, allowing synaptic strengths to scale accordingly. Experimental measurements show that a BAP evoked by current injection at the soma causes calcium currents in the apical shaft whose amplitudes decay with distance from the soma. However, in vivo action potentials are not induced by somatic current injection but by synaptic inputs along the dendrites, which creates a different excitable state of the dendrites. Due to technical limitations, it is not possible to study experimentally whether distance information can also be provided by synaptically-evoked BAPs. Therefore we adapted a realistic morphological and electrophysiological model to measure BAP-induced voltage and calcium signals in spines after Schaffer collateral synapse stimulation. We show that peak calcium concentration is highly correlated with soma-synapse distance under a number of physiologically-realistic suprathreshold stimulation regimes and for a range of dendritic morphologies. Peak calcium levels also predicted the attenuation of the EPSP across the dendritic tree. Furthermore, we show that peak calcium can be used to set up a synaptic democracy in a homeostatic manner, whereby synapses regulate their synaptic strength on the basis of the difference between peak calcium and a uniform target value. We conclude that information derived from synaptically-generated BAPs can indicate synapse location and can subsequently be utilised to implement a synaptic democracy. PMID:22719238

  5. Tissue banking in a regulated environment--does this help the patient? Part 1--Legislation, regulation and ethics in the UK.

    PubMed

    Clark, Brian J

    2007-01-01

    The difficulties with 'retained organs' in the UK have resulted in a new legislation relating to human organs, tissues, and bodies - the Human Tissue Act 2004 and the Human Tissue Act Scotland 2006 are now in place. The new laws apply to a wide range of activities including transplantation, education, clinical audit, the practice of autopsies, anatomical examination and others, including the use of human tissues in research. Pathobiology research that uses human tissues is now undertaken in a regulated environment in the UK. The details of these regulations are described and the consequences discussed. In the second part of the paper the patient's views and expectations in this new setting are forwarded.

  6. Kinetic model of excitatory synaptic transmission to cerebellar Purkinje cells.

    PubMed

    Marienhagen, J; Keller, B U; Zippelius, A

    1997-09-21

    We present a minimal kinetic model for excitatory synaptic transmission to cerebellar Purkinje cells. The main components are a kinetic model for a single glutamate receptor, which is calibrated with the help of patch clamp data, and a mean field approximation for the dynamics of a population of channels, which generate an EPSC. The resulting minimal model of the parallel fiber-Purkinje cell synapse is used to estimate the dynamics of glutamate in the synaptic cleft and to clarify the role of receptor desensitization in synaptic transmission. We also apply the model to different aspects of synaptic modulation, like long-term depression and potentiation by pharmacological application of ampakines. In the framework of the minimal model these effects can be understood as the result of modified receptor kinetics.

  7. The discovery of the soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor complex and the molecular regulation of synaptic vesicle transmitter release: the 2010 Kavli Prize in neuroscience.

    PubMed

    Hussain, S; Davanger, S

    2011-09-08

    Brain function depends on a crucial feature: The ability of individual neurons to share packets of information, known as quantal transmission. Given the sheer number of tasks the brain has to deal with, this information sharing must be extremely rapid. Synapses are specialized points of contact between neurons, where fast transmission takes place. Though the basic elements and functions of the synapse had been established since the 1950s, the molecular basis for regulation of fast synaptic transmitter release was not known 20 years ago. However, around 1990, crucial discoveries were made by Richard Scheller, James Rothman, and Thomas Südhof, leading a few years later to the formulation of the SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) hypothesis and a new understanding of the molecular events controlling vesicular release of transmitter in synapses. The 2010 Kavli Prize in neuroscience was awarded to these three researchers, "for their work to reveal the precise molecular basis of the transfer of signals between nerve cells in the brain."

  8. Synaptic encoding of temporal contiguity

    PubMed Central

    Ostojic, Srdjan; Fusi, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    Often we need to perform tasks in an environment that changes stochastically. In these situations it is important to learn the statistics of sequences of events in order to predict the future and the outcome of our actions. The statistical description of many of these sequences can be reduced to the set of probabilities that a particular event follows another event (temporal contiguity). Under these conditions, it is important to encode and store in our memory these transition probabilities. Here we show that for a large class of synaptic plasticity models, the distribution of synaptic strengths encodes transitions probabilities. Specifically, when the synaptic dynamics depend on pairs of contiguous events and the synapses can remember multiple instances of the transitions, then the average synaptic weights are a monotonic function of the transition probabilities. The synaptic weights converge to the distribution encoding the probabilities also when the correlations between consecutive synaptic modifications are considered. We studied how this distribution depends on the number of synaptic states for a specific model of a multi-state synapse with hard bounds. In the case of bistable synapses, the average synaptic weights are a smooth function of the transition probabilities and the accuracy of the encoding depends on the learning rate. As the number of synaptic states increases, the average synaptic weights become a step function of the transition probabilities. We finally show that the information stored in the synaptic weights can be read out by a simple rate-based neural network. Our study shows that synapses encode transition probabilities under general assumptions and this indicates that temporal contiguity is likely to be encoded and harnessed in almost every neural circuit in the brain. PMID:23641210

  9. Nervous wreck interacts with Thickveins and the endocytic machinery to attenuate retrograde BMP signaling during synaptic growth

    PubMed Central

    O’Connor-Giles, Kate M.; Ho, Ling Ling; Ganetzky, Barry

    2008-01-01

    Summary Regulation of synaptic growth is fundamental to the formation and plasticity of neural circuits. Here we demonstrate that Nervous wreck (Nwk), a negative regulator of synaptic growth at Drosophila NMJs, interacts functionally and physically with components of the endocytic machinery, including dynamin and Dap160/Intersectin, and negatively regulates retrograde BMP growth signaling through a direct interaction with BMP receptor, Thickveins. Synaptic overgrowth in nwk is sensitive to BMP signaling levels and loss of Nwk facilitates BMP-induced overgrowth. Conversely, Nwk overexpression suppresses BMP-induced synaptic overgrowth. We observe analogous genetic interactions between dap160 and the BMP pathway, confirming that endocytosis regulates BMP signaling at NMJs. Finally, we demonstrate a correlation between synaptic growth and pMAD levels, and show that Nwk regulates these levels. We propose that Nwk functions at the interface of endocytosis and BMP signaling to ensure proper synaptic growth by negatively regulating Tkv to set limits on this positive growth signal. PMID:18498733

  10. Synaptic devices based on purely electronic memristors

    SciTech Connect

    Pan, Ruobing; Li, Jun; Zhuge, Fei E-mail: h-cao@nimte.ac.cn; Zhu, Liqiang; Liang, Lingyan; Zhang, Hongliang; Gao, Junhua; Cao, Hongtao E-mail: h-cao@nimte.ac.cn; Fu, Bing; Li, Kang

    2016-01-04

    Memristive devices have been widely employed to emulate biological synaptic behavior. In these cases, the memristive switching generally originates from electrical field induced ion migration or Joule heating induced phase change. In this letter, the Ti/ZnO/Pt structure was found to show memristive switching ascribed to a carrier trapping/detrapping of the trap sites (e.g., oxygen vacancies or zinc interstitials) in ZnO. The carrier trapping/detrapping level can be controllably adjusted by regulating the current compliance level or voltage amplitude. Multi-level conductance states can, therefore, be realized in such memristive device. The spike-timing-dependent plasticity, an important Hebbian learning rule, has been implemented in this type of synaptic device. Compared with filamentary-type memristive devices, purely electronic memristors have potential to reduce their energy consumption and work more stably and reliably, since no structural distortion occurs.

  11. TNFα in synaptic function: switching gears.

    PubMed

    Santello, Mirko; Volterra, Andrea

    2012-10-01

    Pathological brain states are known to induce massive production of proinflammatory cytokines, including tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα). At much lower levels, these cytokines are also present in the healthy brain, where it is increasingly being recognized that they exert regulatory influences. Recent studies suggest that TNFα plays important roles in controlling synaptic transmission and plasticity. Here, we discuss the evidence in support of synaptic regulation by TNFα and the underlying cellular mechanisms, including control of AMPA receptor trafficking and glutamate release from astrocytes. These findings suggest that increases in TNFα levels (caused by nervous system infection, injury, or disease) transform the physiological actions of the cytokine into deleterious ones. This functional switch may contribute to cognitive alterations in several brain pathologies.

  12. Synaptic Mechanisms of Memory Consolidation during Sleep Slow Oscillations

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Yina; Krishnan, Giri P.

    2016-01-01

    Sleep is critical for regulation of synaptic efficacy, memories, and learning. However, the underlying mechanisms of how sleep rhythms contribute to consolidating memories acquired during wakefulness remain unclear. Here we studied the role of slow oscillations, 0.2–1 Hz rhythmic transitions between Up and Down states during stage 3/4 sleep, on dynamics of synaptic connectivity in the thalamocortical network model implementing spike-timing-dependent synaptic plasticity. We found that the spatiotemporal pattern of Up-state propagation determines the changes of synaptic strengths between neurons. Furthermore, an external input, mimicking hippocampal ripples, delivered to the cortical network results in input-specific changes of synaptic weights, which persisted after stimulation was removed. These synaptic changes promoted replay of specific firing sequences of the cortical neurons. Our study proposes a neuronal mechanism on how an interaction between hippocampal input, such as mediated by sharp wave-ripple events, cortical slow oscillations, and synaptic plasticity, may lead to consolidation of memories through preferential replay of cortical cell spike sequences during slow-wave sleep. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Sleep is critical for memory and learning. Replay during sleep of temporally ordered spike sequences related to a recent experience was proposed to be a neuronal substrate of memory consolidation. However, specific mechanisms of replay or how spike sequence replay leads to synaptic changes that underlie memory consolidation are still poorly understood. Here we used a detailed computational model of the thalamocortical system to report that interaction between slow cortical oscillations and synaptic plasticity during deep sleep can underlie mapping hippocampal memory traces to persistent cortical representation. This study provided, for the first time, a mechanistic explanation of how slow-wave sleep may promote consolidation of recent memory events. PMID

  13. Synaptic Efficacy as a Function of Ionotropic Receptor Distribution: A Computational Study

    PubMed Central

    Allam, Sushmita L.; Bouteiller, Jean-Marie C.; Hu, Eric Y.; Ambert, Nicolas; Greget, Renaud; Bischoff, Serge; Baudry, Michel; Berger, Theodore W.

    2015-01-01

    Glutamatergic synapses are the most prevalent functional elements of information processing in the brain. Changes in pre-synaptic activity and in the function of various post-synaptic elements contribute to generate a large variety of synaptic responses. Previous studies have explored postsynaptic factors responsible for regulating synaptic strength variations, but have given far less importance to synaptic geometry, and more specifically to the subcellular distribution of ionotropic receptors. We analyzed the functional effects resulting from changing the subsynaptic localization of ionotropic receptors by using a hippocampal synaptic computational framework. The present study was performed using the EONS (Elementary Objects of the Nervous System) synaptic modeling platform, which was specifically developed to explore the roles of subsynaptic elements as well as their interactions, and that of synaptic geometry. More specifically, we determined the effects of changing the localization of ionotropic receptors relative to the presynaptic glutamate release site, on synaptic efficacy and its variations following single pulse and paired-pulse stimulation protocols. The results indicate that changes in synaptic geometry do have consequences on synaptic efficacy and its dynamics. PMID:26480028

  14. Synaptic Efficacy as a Function of Ionotropic Receptor Distribution: A Computational Study.

    PubMed

    Allam, Sushmita L; Bouteiller, Jean-Marie C; Hu, Eric Y; Ambert, Nicolas; Greget, Renaud; Bischoff, Serge; Baudry, Michel; Berger, Theodore W

    2015-01-01

    Glutamatergic synapses are the most prevalent functional elements of information processing in the brain. Changes in pre-synaptic activity and in the function of various post-synaptic elements contribute to generate a large variety of synaptic responses. Previous studies have explored postsynaptic factors responsible for regulating synaptic strength variations, but have given far less importance to synaptic geometry, and more specifically to the subcellular distribution of ionotropic receptors. We analyzed the functional effects resulting from changing the subsynaptic localization of ionotropic receptors by using a hippocampal synaptic computational framework. The present study was performed using the EONS (Elementary Objects of the Nervous System) synaptic modeling platform, which was specifically developed to explore the roles of subsynaptic elements as well as their interactions, and that of synaptic geometry. More specifically, we determined the effects of changing the localization of ionotropic receptors relative to the presynaptic glutamate release site, on synaptic efficacy and its variations following single pulse and paired-pulse stimulation protocols. The results indicate that changes in synaptic geometry do have consequences on synaptic efficacy and its dynamics.

  15. Synaptic electronics: materials, devices and applications.

    PubMed

    Kuzum, Duygu; Yu, Shimeng; Wong, H-S Philip

    2013-09-27

    In this paper, the recent progress of synaptic electronics is reviewed. The basics of biological synaptic plasticity and learning are described. The material properties and electrical switching characteristics of a variety of synaptic devices are discussed, with a focus on the use of synaptic devices for neuromorphic or brain-inspired computing. Performance metrics desirable for large-scale implementations of synaptic devices are illustrated. A review of recent work on targeted computing applications with synaptic devices is presented.

  16. A Model of Synaptic Reconsolidation

    PubMed Central

    Kastner, David B.; Schwalger, Tilo; Ziegler, Lorric; Gerstner, Wulfram

    2016-01-01

    Reconsolidation of memories has mostly been studied at the behavioral and molecular level. Here, we put forward a simple extension of existing computational models of synaptic consolidation to capture hippocampal slice experiments that have been interpreted as reconsolidation at the synaptic level. The model implements reconsolidation through stabilization of consolidated synapses by stabilizing entities combined with an activity-dependent reservoir of stabilizing entities that are immune to protein synthesis inhibition (PSI). We derive a reduced version of our model to explore the conditions under which synaptic reconsolidation does or does not occur, often referred to as the boundary conditions of reconsolidation. We find that our computational model of synaptic reconsolidation displays complex boundary conditions. Our results suggest that a limited resource of hypothetical stabilizing molecules or complexes, which may be implemented by protein phosphorylation or different receptor subtypes, can underlie the phenomenon of synaptic reconsolidation. PMID:27242410

  17. Molecular Mechanisms of Synaptic Specificity

    PubMed Central

    Margeta, Milica A.; Shen, Kang

    2011-01-01

    Synapses are specialized junctions that mediate information flow between neurons and their targets. A striking feature of the nervous system is the specificity of its synaptic connections: an individual neuron will form synapses only with a small subset of available presynaptic and postsynaptic partners. Synaptic specificity has been classically thought to arise from homophilic or heterophilic interactions between adhesive molecules acting across the synaptic cleft. Over the past decade, many new mechanisms giving rise to synaptic specificity have been identified. Synapses can be specified by secreted molecules that promote or inhibit synaptogenesis, and their source can be a neighboring guidepost cell, not just presynaptic and postsynaptic neurons. Furthermore, lineage, fate, and timing of development can also play critical roles in shaping neural circuits. Future work utilizing large-scale screens will aim to elucidate the full scope of cellular mechanisms and molecular players that can give rise to synaptic specificity. PMID:19969086

  18. Roles of BLOC-1 and Adaptor Protein-3 Complexes in Cargo Sorting to Synaptic Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Newell-Litwa, Karen; Salazar, Gloria; Smith, Yoland

    2009-01-01

    Neuronal lysosomes and their biogenesis mechanisms are primarily thought to clear metabolites and proteins whose abnormal accumulation leads to neurodegenerative disease pathology. However, it remains unknown whether lysosomal sorting mechanisms regulate the levels of membrane proteins within synaptic vesicles. Using high-resolution deconvolution microscopy, we identified early endosomal compartments where both selected synaptic vesicle and lysosomal membrane proteins coexist with the adaptor protein complex 3 (AP-3) in neuronal cells. From these early endosomes, both synaptic vesicle membrane proteins and characteristic AP-3 lysosomal cargoes can be similarly sorted to brain synaptic vesicles and PC12 synaptic-like microvesicles. Mouse knockouts for two Hermansky–Pudlak complexes involved in lysosomal biogenesis from early endosomes, the ubiquitous isoform of AP-3 (Ap3b1−/−) and muted, defective in the biogenesis of lysosome-related organelles complex 1 (BLOC-1), increased the content of characteristic synaptic vesicle proteins and known AP-3 lysosomal proteins in isolated synaptic vesicle fractions. These phenotypes contrast with those of the mouse knockout for the neuronal AP-3 isoform involved in synaptic vesicle biogenesis (Ap3b2−/−), in which the content of select proteins was reduced in synaptic vesicles. Our results demonstrate that lysosomal and lysosome-related organelle biogenesis mechanisms regulate steady-state synaptic vesicle protein composition from shared early endosomes. PMID:19144828

  19. The origin of glutamatergic synaptic inputs controls synaptic plasticity and its modulation by alcohol in mice nucleus accumbens

    PubMed Central

    Ji, Xincai; Saha, Sucharita; Martin, Gilles E.

    2015-01-01

    It is widely accepted that long-lasting changes of synaptic strength in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), a brain region involved in drug reward, mediate acute and chronic effects of alcohol. However, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the effects of alcohol on synaptic plasticity is limited by the fact that the NAc receives glutamatergic inputs from distinct brain regions (e.g., the prefrontal cortex (PFCx), the amygdala and the hippocampus), each region providing different information (e.g., spatial, emotional and cognitive). Combining whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and the optogenetic technique, we examined synaptic plasticity, and its regulation by alcohol, at cortical, hippocampal and amygdala inputs in fresh slices of mouse tissue. We showed that the origin of synaptic inputs determines the basic properties of glutamatergic synaptic transmission, the expression of spike-timing dependent long-term depression (tLTD) and long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term potentiation (tLTP) and their regulation by alcohol. While we observed both tLTP and tLTD at amygadala and hippocampal synapses, we showed that cortical inputs only undergo tLTD. Functionally, we provide evidence that acute Ethyl Alcohol (EtOH) has little effects on higher order information coming from the PFCx, while severely impacting the ability of emotional and contextual information to induce long-lasting changes of synaptic strength. PMID:26257641

  20. Transferrin Receptor Controls AMPA Receptor Trafficking Efficiency and Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Ke; Lei, Run; Li, Qiong; Wang, Xin-Xin; Wu, Qian; An, Peng; Zhang, Jianchao; Zhu, Minyan; Xu, Zhiheng; Hong, Yang; Wang, Fudi; Shen, Ying; Li, Hongchang; Li, Huashun

    2016-01-01

    Transferrin receptor (TFR) is an important iron transporter regulating iron homeostasis and has long been used as a marker for clathrin mediated endocytosis. However, little is known about its additional function other than iron transport in the development of central nervous system (CNS). Here we demonstrate that TFR functions as a regulator to control AMPA receptor trafficking efficiency and synaptic plasticity. The conditional knockout (KO) of TFR in neural progenitor cells causes mice to develop progressive epileptic seizure, and dramatically reduces basal synaptic transmission and long-term potentiation (LTP). We further demonstrate that TFR KO remarkably reduces the binding efficiency of GluR2 to AP2 and subsequently decreases AMPA receptor endocytosis and recycling. Thus, our study reveals that TFR functions as a novel regulator to control AMPA trafficking efficiency and synaptic plasticity. PMID:26880306

  1. A model for regulation by SynGAP-α1 of binding of synaptic proteins to PDZ-domain 'Slots' in the postsynaptic density

    PubMed Central

    Walkup, Ward G; Mastro, Tara L; Schenker, Leslie T; Vielmetter, Jost; Hu, Rebecca; Iancu, Ariella; Reghunathan, Meera; Bannon, Barry Dylan; Kennedy, Mary B

    2016-01-01

    SynGAP is a Ras/Rap GTPase-activating protein (GAP) that is a major constituent of postsynaptic densities (PSDs) from mammalian forebrain. Its α1 isoform binds to all three PDZ (PSD-95, Discs-large, ZO-1) domains of PSD-95, the principal PSD scaffold, and can occupy as many as 15% of these PDZ domains. We present evidence that synGAP-α1 regulates the composition of the PSD by restricting binding to the PDZ domains of PSD-95. We show that phosphorylation by Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) and Polo-like kinase-2 (PLK2) decreases its affinity for the PDZ domains by several fold, which would free PDZ domains for occupancy by other proteins. Finally, we show that three critical postsynaptic signaling proteins that bind to the PDZ domains of PSD-95 are present in higher concentration in PSDs isolated from mice with a heterozygous deletion of synGAP. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.16813.001 PMID:27623146

  2. CDK5 downregulation enhances synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Posada-Duque, Rafael Andrés; Ramirez, Omar; Härtel, Steffen; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C; Bodaleo, Felipe; González-Billault, Christian; Kirkwood, Alfredo; Cardona-Gómez, Gloria Patricia

    2017-01-01

    CDK5 is a serine/threonine kinase that is involved in the normal function of the adult brain and plays a role in neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity. However, its over-regulation has been associated with Tau hyperphosphorylation and cognitive deficits. Our previous studies have demonstrated that CDK5 targeting using shRNA-miR provides neuroprotection and prevents cognitive deficits. Dendritic spine morphogenesis and forms of long-term synaptic plasticity-such as long-term potentiation (LTP)-have been proposed as essential processes of neuroplasticity. However, whether CDK5 participates in these processes remains controversial and depends on the experimental model. Using wild-type mice that received injections of CDK5 shRNA-miR in CA1 showed an increased LTP and recovered the PPF in deficient LTP of APPswe/PS1Δ9 transgenic mice. On mature hippocampal neurons CDK5, shRNA-miR for 12 days induced increased dendritic protrusion morphogenesis, which was dependent on Rac activity. In addition, silencing of CDK5 increased BDNF expression, temporarily increased phosphorylation of CaMKII, ERK, and CREB; and facilitated calcium signaling in neurites. Together, our data suggest that CDK5 downregulation induces synaptic plasticity in mature neurons involving Ca(2+) signaling and BDNF/CREB activation.

  3. Synaptic and nonsynaptic plasticity approximating probabilistic inference

    PubMed Central

    Tully, Philip J.; Hennig, Matthias H.; Lansner, Anders

    2014-01-01

    Learning and memory operations in neural circuits are believed to involve molecular cascades of synaptic and nonsynaptic changes that lead to a diverse repertoire of dynamical phenomena at higher levels of processing. Hebbian and homeostatic plasticity, neuromodulation, and intrinsic excitability all conspire to form and maintain memories. But it is still unclear how these seemingly redundant mechanisms could jointly orchestrate learning in a more unified system. To this end, a Hebbian learning rule for spiking neurons inspired by Bayesian statistics is proposed. In this model, synaptic weights and intrinsic currents are adapted on-line upon arrival of single spikes, which initiate a cascade of temporally interacting memory traces that locally estimate probabilities associated with relative neuronal activation levels. Trace dynamics enable synaptic learning to readily demonstrate a spike-timing dependence, stably return to a set-point over long time scales, and remain competitive despite this stability. Beyond unsupervised learning, linking the traces with an external plasticity-modulating signal enables spike-based reinforcement learning. At the postsynaptic neuron, the traces are represented by an activity-dependent ion channel that is shown to regulate the input received by a postsynaptic cell and generate intrinsic graded persistent firing levels. We show how spike-based Hebbian-Bayesian learning can be performed in a simulated inference task using integrate-and-fire (IAF) neurons that are Poisson-firing and background-driven, similar to the preferred regime of cortical neurons. Our results support the view that neurons can represent information in the form of probability distributions, and that probabilistic inference could be a functional by-product of coupled synaptic and nonsynaptic mechanisms operating over several timescales. The model provides a biophysical realization of Bayesian computation by reconciling several observed neural phenomena whose

  4. Synaptic dynamics in analog VLSI.

    PubMed

    Bartolozzi, Chiara; Indiveri, Giacomo

    2007-10-01

    Synapses are crucial elements for computation and information transfer in both real and artificial neural systems. Recent experimental findings and theoretical models of pulse-based neural networks suggest that synaptic dynamics can play a crucial role for learning neural codes and encoding spatiotemporal spike patterns. Within the context of hardware implementations of pulse-based neural networks, several analog VLSI circuits modeling synaptic functionality have been proposed. We present an overview of previously proposed circuits and describe a novel analog VLSI synaptic circuit suitable for integration in large VLSI spike-based neural systems. The circuit proposed is based on a computational model that fits the real postsynaptic currents with exponentials. We present experimental data showing how the circuit exhibits realistic dynamics and show how it can be connected to additional modules for implementing a wide range of synaptic properties.

  5. Modulation of Synaptic Plasticity by Glutamatergic Gliotransmission: A Modeling Study

    PubMed Central

    De Pittà, Maurizio; Brunel, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    Glutamatergic gliotransmission, that is, the release of glutamate from perisynaptic astrocyte processes in an activity-dependent manner, has emerged as a potentially crucial signaling pathway for regulation of synaptic plasticity, yet its modes of expression and function in vivo remain unclear. Here, we focus on two experimentally well-identified gliotransmitter pathways, (i) modulations of synaptic release and (ii) postsynaptic slow inward currents mediated by glutamate released from astrocytes, and investigate their possible functional relevance on synaptic plasticity in a biophysical model of an astrocyte-regulated synapse. Our model predicts that both pathways could profoundly affect both short- and long-term plasticity. In particular, activity-dependent glutamate release from astrocytes could dramatically change spike-timing-dependent plasticity, turning potentiation into depression (and vice versa) for the same induction protocol. PMID:27195153

  6. ECM receptors in neuronal structure, synaptic plasticity, and behavior.

    PubMed

    Kerrisk, Meghan E; Cingolani, Lorenzo A; Koleske, Anthony J

    2014-01-01

    During central nervous system development, extracellular matrix (ECM) receptors and their ligands play key roles as guidance molecules, informing neurons where and when to send axonal and dendritic projections, establish connections, and form synapses between pre- and postsynaptic cells. Once stable synapses are formed, many ECM receptors transition in function to control the maintenance of stable connections between neurons and regulate synaptic plasticity. These receptors bind to and are activated by ECM ligands. In turn, ECM receptor activation modulates downstream signaling cascades that control cytoskeletal dynamics and synaptic activity to regulate neuronal structure and function and thereby impact animal behavior. The activities of cell adhesion receptors that mediate interactions between pre- and postsynaptic partners are also strongly influenced by ECM composition. This chapter highlights a number of ECM receptors, their roles in the control of synapse structure and function, and the impact of these receptors on synaptic plasticity and animal behavior.

  7. Sleep recalibrates homeostatic and associative synaptic plasticity in the human cortex

    PubMed Central

    Kuhn, Marion; Wolf, Elias; Maier, Jonathan G.; Mainberger, Florian; Feige, Bernd; Schmid, Hanna; Bürklin, Jan; Maywald, Sarah; Mall, Volker; Jung, Nikolai H.; Reis, Janine; Spiegelhalder, Kai; Klöppel, Stefan; Sterr, Annette; Eckert, Anne; Riemann, Dieter; Normann, Claus; Nissen, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    Sleep is ubiquitous in animals and humans, but its function remains to be further determined. The synaptic homeostasis hypothesis of sleep–wake regulation proposes a homeostatic increase in net synaptic strength and cortical excitability along with decreased inducibility of associative synaptic long-term potentiation (LTP) due to saturation after sleep deprivation. Here we use electrophysiological, behavioural and molecular indices to non-invasively study net synaptic strength and LTP-like plasticity in humans after sleep and sleep deprivation. We demonstrate indices of increased net synaptic strength (TMS intensity to elicit a predefined amplitude of motor-evoked potential and EEG theta activity) and decreased LTP-like plasticity (paired associative stimulation induced change in motor-evoked potential and memory formation) after sleep deprivation. Changes in plasma BDNF are identified as a potential mechanism. Our study indicates that sleep recalibrates homeostatic and associative synaptic plasticity, believed to be the neural basis for adaptive behaviour, in humans. PMID:27551934

  8. Differential Dendritic Integration of Synaptic Potentials and Calcium in Cerebellar Interneurons.

    PubMed

    Tran-Van-Minh, Alexandra; Abrahamsson, Therése; Cathala, Laurence; DiGregorio, David A

    2016-08-17

    Dendritic voltage integration determines the transformation of synaptic inputs into output firing, while synaptic calcium integration drives plasticity mechanisms thought to underlie memory storage. Dendritic calcium integration has been shown to follow the same synaptic input-output relationship as dendritic voltage, but whether similar operations apply to neurons exhibiting sublinear voltage integration is unknown. We examined the properties and cellular mechanisms of these dendritic operations in cerebellar molecular layer interneurons using dendritic voltage and calcium imaging, in combination with synaptic stimulation or glutamate uncaging. We show that, while synaptic potentials summate sublinearly, concomitant dendritic calcium signals summate either linearly or supralinearly depending on the number of synapses activated. The supralinear dendritic calcium triggers a branch-specific, short-term suppression of neurotransmitter release that alters the pattern of synaptic activation. Thus, differential voltage and calcium integration permits dynamic regulation of neuronal input-output transformations without altering intrinsic nonlinear integration mechanisms.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-07-01

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

  10. Sensory Deprivation Triggers Synaptic and Intrinsic Plasticity in the Hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Milshtein-Parush, Hila; Frere, Samuel; Regev, Limor; Lahav, Coren; Benbenishty, Amit; Ben-Eliyahu, Shamgar; Goshen, Inbal; Slutsky, Inna

    2017-04-12

    Hippocampus, a temporal lobe structure involved in learning and memory, receives information from all sensory modalities. Despite extensive research on the role of sensory experience in cortical map plasticity, little is known about whether and how sensory experience regulates functioning of the hippocampal circuits. Here, we show that 9 ± 2 days of whisker deprivation during early mouse development depresses activity of CA3 pyramidal neurons by several principal mechanisms: decrease in release probability, increase in the fraction of silent synapses, and reduction in intrinsic excitability. As a result of deprivation-induced presynaptic inhibition, CA3-CA1 synaptic facilitation was augmented at high frequencies, shifting filtering properties of synapses. The changes in the AMPA-mediated synaptic transmission were accompanied by an increase in NR2B-containing NMDA receptors and a reduction in the AMPA/NMDA ratio. The observed reconfiguration of the CA3-CA1 connections may represent a homeostatic adaptation to augmentation in synaptic activity during the initial deprivation phase. In adult mice, tactile disuse diminished intrinsic excitability without altering synaptic facilitation. We suggest that sensory experience regulates computations performed by the hippocampus by tuning its synaptic and intrinsic characteristics.

  11. Tweek, an evolutionary conserved proteinis required for synaptic vesicle recycling

    PubMed Central

    Verstreken, Patrik; Ohyama, Tomoko; Haueter, Claire; Habets, Ron L.P.; Lin, Yong Q.; Swan, Laura E.; Ly, Cindy V.; Venken, Koen J. T.; De Camilli, Pietro; Bellen, Hugo J.

    2009-01-01

    Synaptic vesicle endocytosis is critical to maintain synaptic communication during intense stimulation. Here we describe Tweek, a conserved protein that is required for synaptic vesicle recycling. tweek mutants show reduced FM 1–43 uptake, cannot maintain release during intense stimulation and harbor larger than normal synaptic vesicles, implicating it in vesicle recycling at the synapse. Interestingly, the levels of a fluorescent PI(4,5)P2 reporter are reduced at tweek mutant synapses and the probe is aberrantly localized during stimulation. In addition, various endocytic adaptors known to bind PI(4,5)P2 are mislocalized and the defects in FM 1–43 dye uptake and adaptor localization are partially suppressed by removing one copy of the phosphoinositide-phosphatase synaptojanin, suggesting a role for Tweek in maintaining proper phosphoinositide levels at synapses. Our data implicate Tweek in regulating synaptic vesicle recycling via an action mediated at least in part by the regulation of PI(4,5)P2 levels or availability at the synapse. PMID:19640479

  12. Help Helps, but Only so Much: Research on Help Seeking with Intelligent Tutoring Systems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aleven, Vincent; Roll, Ido; McLaren, Bruce M.; Koedinger, Kenneth R.

    2016-01-01

    Help seeking is an important process in self-regulated learning (SRL). It may influence learning with intelligent tutoring systems (ITSs), because many ITSs provide help, often at the student's request. The Help Tutor was a tutor agent that gave in-context, real-time feedback on students' help-seeking behavior, as they were learning with an ITS.…

  13. From synaptic spines to nuclear signaling: nuclear and synaptic actions of the amyloid precursor protein.

    PubMed

    Octave, Jean-Noël; Pierrot, Nathalie; Ferao Santos, Susana; Nalivaeva, Natalia N; Turner, Anthony J

    2013-07-01

    Despite intensive studies of the secretase-mediated processing of the amyloid precursor protein (APP) to form the amyloid β-peptide (Aβ), in relation to Alzheimer's disease (AD), no new therapeutic agents have reached the clinics based on reducing Aβ levels through the use of secretase inhibitors or immunotherapy. Furthermore, the normal neuronal functions of APP and its various metabolites still remain under-investigated and unclear. Here, we highlight emerging areas of APP function that may provide new insights into synaptic development, cognition, and gene regulation. By modulating expression levels of endogenous APP in primary cortical neurons, the frequency and amplitude of calcium oscillations is modified, implying a key role for APP in maintaining neuronal calcium homeostasis essential for synaptic transmission. Disruption of this homeostatic mechanism predisposes to aging and AD. Synaptic spine loss is a feature of neurogeneration resulting in learning and memory deficits, and emerging evidence indicates a role for APP, probably mediated via one or more of its metabolites, in spine structure and functions. The intracellular domain of APP (AICD) has also emerged as a key epigenetic regulator of gene expression controlling a diverse range of genes, including APP itself, the amyloid-degrading enzyme neprilysin, and aquaporin-1. A fuller understanding of the physiological and pathological actions of APP and its metabolic network could provide new opportunities for therapeutic intervention in AD.

  14. Helping Children Help Themselves. Revised.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alberta Dept. of Agriculture, Edmonton.

    Youth leaders and parents can use this activity oriented publication to help children six to twelve years of age become more independent by acquiring daily living skills. The publication consists of five units, each of which contains an introduction, learning activities, and lists of resource materials. Age-ability levels are suggested for…

  15. Help Us to Help Ourselves

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stanistreet, Paul

    2010-01-01

    Local authorities have a strong tradition of supporting communities to help themselves, and this is nowhere better illustrated than in the learning they commission and deliver through the Adult Safeguarded Learning budget. The budget was set up to protect at least a minimum of provision for adult liberal education, family learning and learning for…

  16. The role of synaptic ion channels in synaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Voglis, Giannis; Tavernarakis, Nektarios

    2006-01-01

    The nervous system receives a large amount of information about the environment through elaborate sensory routes. Processing and integration of these wide-ranging inputs often results in long-term behavioural alterations as a result of past experiences. These relatively permanent changes in behaviour are manifestations of the capacity of the nervous system for learning and memory. At the cellular level, synaptic plasticity is one of the mechanisms underlying this process. Repeated neural activity generates physiological changes in the nervous system that ultimately modulate neuronal communication through synaptic transmission. Recent studies implicate both presynaptic and postsynaptic ion channels in the process of synapse strength modulation. Here, we review the role of synaptic ion channels in learning and memory, and discuss the implications and significance of these findings towards deciphering the molecular biology of learning and memory. PMID:17077866

  17. Bidirectional Synaptic Structural Plasticity after Chronic Cocaine Administration Occurs through Rap1 Small GTPase Signaling.

    PubMed

    Cahill, Michael E; Bagot, Rosemary C; Gancarz, Amy M; Walker, Deena M; Sun, HaoSheng; Wang, Zi-Jun; Heller, Elizabeth A; Feng, Jian; Kennedy, Pamela J; Koo, Ja Wook; Cates, Hannah M; Neve, Rachael L; Shen, Li; Dietz, David M; Nestler, Eric J

    2016-02-03

    Dendritic spines are the sites of most excitatory synapses in the CNS, and opposing alterations in the synaptic structure of medium spiny neurons (MSNs) of the nucleus accumbens (NAc), a primary brain reward region, are seen at early versus late time points after cocaine administration. Here we investigate the time-dependent molecular and biochemical processes that regulate this bidirectional synaptic structural plasticity of NAc MSNs and associated changes in cocaine reward in response to chronic cocaine exposure. Our findings reveal key roles for the bidirectional synaptic expression of the Rap1b small GTPase and an associated local synaptic protein translation network in this process. The transcriptional mechanisms and pathway-specific inputs to NAc that regulate Rap1b expression are also characterized. Collectively, these findings provide a precise mechanism by which nuclear to synaptic interactions induce "metaplasticity" in NAc MSNs, and we reveal the specific effects of this plasticity on reward behavior in a brain circuit-specific manner.

  18. A unifying theory of synaptic long-term plasticity based on a sparse distribution of synaptic strength

    PubMed Central

    Krieg, Daniel; Triesch, Jochen

    2014-01-01

    Long-term synaptic plasticity is fundamental to learning and network function. It has been studied under various induction protocols and depends on firing rates, membrane voltage, and precise timing of action potentials. These protocols show different facets of a common underlying mechanism but they are mostly modeled as distinct phenomena. Here, we show that all of these different dependencies can be explained from a single computational principle. The objective is a sparse distribution of excitatory synaptic strength, which may help to reduce metabolic costs associated with synaptic transmission. Based on this objective we derive a stochastic gradient ascent learning rule which is of differential-Hebbian type. It is formulated in biophysical quantities and can be related to current mechanistic theories of synaptic plasticity. The learning rule accounts for experimental findings from all major induction protocols and explains a classic phenomenon of metaplasticity. Furthermore, our model predicts the existence of metaplasticity for spike-timing-dependent plasticity Thus, we provide a theory of long-term synaptic plasticity that unifies different induction protocols and provides a connection between functional and mechanistic levels of description. PMID:24624080

  19. Diversity of neuropsin (KLK8)-dependent synaptic associativity in the hippocampal pyramidal neuron.

    PubMed

    Ishikawa, Yasuyuki; Tamura, Hideki; Shiosaka, Sadao

    2011-07-15

    Hippocampal early (E-) long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) elicited by a weak stimulus normally fades within 90 min. Late (L-) LTP and LTD elicited by strong stimuli continue for >180 min and require new protein synthesis to persist. If a strong tetanus is applied once to synaptic inputs, even a weak tetanus applied to another synaptic input can evoke persistent LTP. A synaptic tag is hypothesized to enable the capture of newly synthesized synaptic molecules. This process, referred to as synaptic tagging, is found between not only the same processes (i.e. E- and L-LTP; E- and L-LTD) but also between different processes (i.e. E-LTP and L-LTD; E-LTD and L-LTP) induced at two independent synaptic inputs (cross-tagging). However, the mechanisms of synaptic tag setting remain unclear. In our previous study, we found that synaptic associativity in the hippocampal Schaffer collateral pathway depended on neuropsin (kallikrein-related peptidase 8 or KLK8), a plasticity-related extracellular protease. In the present study, we investigated how neuropsin participates in synaptic tagging and cross-tagging. We report that neuropsin is involved in synaptic tagging during LTP at basal and apical dendritic inputs. Moreover, neuropsin is involved in synaptic tagging and cross-tagging during LTP at apical dendritic inputs via integrin β1 and calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II signalling. Thus, neuropsin is a candidate molecule for the LTP-specific tag setting and regulates the transformation of E- to L-LTP during both synaptic tagging and cross-tagging.

  20. AMPARs and synaptic plasticity: the last 25 years.

    PubMed

    Huganir, Richard L; Nicoll, Roger A

    2013-10-30

    The study of synaptic plasticity and specifically LTP and LTD is one of the most active areas of research in neuroscience. In the last 25 years we have come a long way in our understanding of the mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity. In 1988, AMPA and NMDA receptors were not even molecularly identified and we only had a simple model of the minimal requirements for the induction of plasticity. It is now clear that the modulation of the AMPA receptor function and membrane trafficking is critical for many forms of synaptic plasticity and a large number of proteins have been identified that regulate this complex process. Here we review the progress over the last two and a half decades and discuss the future challenges in the field.

  1. Reactive Oxygen Species: Physiological and Physiopathological Effects on Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Beckhauser, Thiago Fernando; Francis-Oliveira, José; De Pasquale, Roberto

    2016-01-01

    In the mammalian central nervous system, reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation is counterbalanced by antioxidant defenses. When large amounts of ROS accumulate, antioxidant mechanisms become overwhelmed and oxidative cellular stress may occur. Therefore, ROS are typically characterized as toxic molecules, oxidizing membrane lipids, changing the conformation of proteins, damaging nucleic acids, and causing deficits in synaptic plasticity. High ROS concentrations are associated with a decline in cognitive functions, as observed in some neurodegenerative disorders and age-dependent decay of neuroplasticity. Nevertheless, controlled ROS production provides the optimal redox state for the activation of transductional pathways involved in synaptic changes. Since ROS may regulate neuronal activity and elicit negative effects at the same time, the distinction between beneficial and deleterious consequences is unclear. In this regard, this review assesses current research and describes the main sources of ROS in neurons, specifying their involvement in synaptic plasticity and distinguishing between physiological and pathological processes implicated. PMID:27625575

  2. The C1q complement family of synaptic organizers: not just complementary.

    PubMed

    Yuzaki, Michisuke

    2017-02-17

    Molecules that regulate formation, differentiation, and maintenance of synapses are called synaptic organizers. Recently, various 'C1q family' proteins have been shown to be released from neurons, and serve as a new class of synaptic organizers. Cbln1 and C1ql1 proteins regulate the formation and maintenance of parallel fiber-Purkinje cell and climbing fiber-Purkinje cell synapses, respectively, in the cerebellum. Cbln1 also modulates the function of postsynaptic delta2 glutamate receptors to regulate synaptic plasticity. C1ql2 and C1ql3, released from mossy fibers, determine the synaptic localization of postsynaptic kainate receptors in the hippocampus. C1ql3 also regulates the formation of synapses between the basolateral amygdala and the prefrontal cortex. These findings indicate the diverse functions of C1q family proteins in various brain regions.

  3. Synaptic Effects of Electric Fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rahman, Asif

    Learning and sensory processing in the brain relies on the effective transmission of information across synapses. The strength and efficacy of synaptic transmission is modifiable through training and can be modulated with noninvasive electrical brain stimulation. Transcranial electrical stimulation (TES), specifically, induces weak intensity and spatially diffuse electric fields in the brain. Despite being weak, electric fields modulate spiking probability and the efficacy of synaptic transmission. These effects critically depend on the direction of the electric field relative to the orientation of the neuron and on the level of endogenous synaptic activity. TES has been used to modulate a wide range of neuropsychiatric indications, for various rehabilitation applications, and cognitive performance in diverse tasks. How can a weak and diffuse electric field, which simultaneously polarizes neurons across the brain, have precise changes in brain function? Designing therapies to maximize desired outcomes and minimize undesired effects presents a challenging problem. A series of experiments and computational models are used to define the anatomical and functional factors leading to specificity of TES. Anatomical specificity derives from guiding current to targeted brain structures and taking advantage of the direction-sensitivity of neurons with respect to the electric field. Functional specificity originates from preferential modulation of neuronal networks that are already active. Diffuse electric fields may recruit connected brain networks involved in a training task and promote plasticity along active synaptic pathways. In vitro, electric fields boost endogenous synaptic plasticity and raise the ceiling for synaptic learning with repeated stimulation sessions. Synapses undergoing strong plasticity are preferentially modulated over weak synapses. Therefore, active circuits that are involved in a task could be more susceptible to stimulation than inactive circuits

  4. Membrane-Derived Phospholipids Control Synaptic Neurotransmission and Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    García-Morales, Victoria; Montero, Fernando; González-Forero, David; Rodríguez-Bey, Guillermo; Gómez-Pérez, Laura; Medialdea-Wandossell, María Jesús; Domínguez-Vías, Germán; García-Verdugo, José Manuel; Moreno-López, Bernardo

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic communication is a dynamic process that is key to the regulation of neuronal excitability and information processing in the brain. To date, however, the molecular signals controlling synaptic dynamics have been poorly understood. Membrane-derived bioactive phospholipids are potential candidates to control short-term tuning of synaptic signaling, a plastic event essential for information processing at both the cellular and neuronal network levels in the brain. Here, we showed that phospholipids affect excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission by different degrees, loci, and mechanisms of action. Signaling triggered by lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) evoked rapid and reversible depression of excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic currents. At excitatory synapses, LPA-induced depression depended on LPA1/Gαi/o-protein/phospholipase C/myosin light chain kinase cascade at the presynaptic site. LPA increased myosin light chain phosphorylation, which is known to trigger actomyosin contraction, and reduced the number of synaptic vesicles docked to active zones in excitatory boutons. At inhibitory synapses, postsynaptic LPA signaling led to dephosphorylation, and internalization of the GABAAγ2 subunit through the LPA1/Gα12/13-protein/RhoA/Rho kinase/calcineurin pathway. However, LPA-induced depression of GABAergic transmission was correlated with an endocytosis-independent reduction of GABAA receptors, possibly by GABAAγ2 dephosphorylation and subsequent increased lateral diffusion. Furthermore, endogenous LPA signaling, mainly via LPA1, mediated activity-dependent inhibitory depression in a model of experimental synaptic plasticity. Finally, LPA signaling, most likely restraining the excitatory drive incoming to motoneurons, regulated performance of motor output commands, a basic brain processing task. We propose that lysophospholipids serve as potential local messengers that tune synaptic strength to precedent activity of the neuron. PMID:25996636

  5. Synaptic vesicle distribution by conveyor belt.

    PubMed

    Moughamian, Armen J; Holzbaur, Erika L F

    2012-03-02

    The equal distribution of synaptic vesicles among synapses along the axon is critical for robust neurotransmission. Wong et al. show that the continuous circulation of synaptic vesicles throughout the axon driven by molecular motors ultimately yields this even distribution.

  6. Mitochondria, synaptic plasticity, and schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Ben-Shachar, Dorit; Laifenfeld, Daphna

    2004-01-01

    The conceptualization of schizophrenia as a disorder of connectivity, i.e., of neuronal?synaptic plasticity, suggests abnormal synaptic modeling and neuronal signaling, possibly as a consequence of flawed interactions with the environment, as at least a secondary mechanism underlying the pathophysiology of this disorder. Indeed, deficits in episodic memory and malfunction of hippocampal circuitry, as well as anomalies of axonal sprouting and synapse formation, are all suggestive of diminished neuronal plasticity in schizophrenia. Evidence supports a dysfunction of mitochondria in schizophrenia, including mitochondrial hypoplasia, and a dysfunction of the oxidative phosphorylation system, as well as altered mitochondrial-related gene expression. Mitochondrial dysfunction leads to alterations in ATP production and cytoplasmatic calcium concentrations, as well as reactive oxygen species and nitric oxide production. All of the latter processes have been well established as leading to altered synaptic strength or plasticity. Moreover, mitochondria have been shown to play a role in plasticity of neuronal polarity, and studies in the visual cortex show an association between mitochondria and synaptogenesis. Finally, mitochondrial gene upregulation has been observed following synaptic and neuronal activity. This review proposes that mitochondrial dysfunction in schizophrenia could cause, or arise from, anomalies in processes of plasticity in this disorder.

  7. Molecular Mechanoneurobiology: An Emerging Angle to Explore Neural Synaptic Functions

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Neural synapses are intercellular asymmetrical junctions that transmit biochemical and biophysical information between a neuron and a target cell. They are very tight, dynamic, and well organized by many synaptic adhesion molecules, signaling receptors, ion channels, and their associated cytoskeleton that bear forces. Mechanical forces have been an emerging factor in regulating axon guidance and growth, synapse formation and plasticity in physiological and pathological brain activity. Therefore, mechanical forces are undoubtedly exerted on those synaptic molecules and modulate their functions. Here we review current progress on how mechanical forces regulate receptor-ligand interactions, protein conformations, ion channels activation, and cytoskeleton dynamics and discuss how these regulations potentially affect synapse formation, stabilization, and plasticity. PMID:26106609

  8. Factors Influencing Short-term Synaptic Plasticity in the Avian Cochlear Nucleus Magnocellularis

    PubMed Central

    Sanchez, Jason Tait; Quinones, Karla; Otto-Meyer, Sebastian

    2015-01-01

    Defined as reduced neural responses during high rates of activity, synaptic depression is a form of short-term plasticity important for the temporal filtering of sound. In the avian cochlear nucleus magnocellularis (NM), an auditory brainstem structure, mechanisms regulating short-term synaptic depression include pre-, post-, and extrasynaptic factors. Using varied paired-pulse stimulus intervals, we found that the time course of synaptic depression lasts up to four seconds at late-developing NM synapses. Synaptic depression was largely reliant on exogenous Ca2+-dependent probability of presynaptic neurotransmitter release, and to a lesser extent, on the desensitization of postsynaptic α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid-type glutamate receptor (AMPA-R). Interestingly, although extrasynaptic glutamate clearance did not play a significant role in regulating synaptic depression, blocking glutamate clearance at early-developing synapses altered synaptic dynamics, changing responses from depression to facilitation. These results suggest a developmental shift in the relative reliance on pre-, post-, and extrasynaptic factors in regulating short-term synaptic plasticity in NM. PMID:26527054

  9. Synaptic activation modifies microtubules underlying transport of postsynaptic cargo.

    PubMed

    Maas, Christoph; Belgardt, Dorthe; Lee, Han Kyu; Heisler, Frank F; Lappe-Siefke, Corinna; Magiera, Maria M; van Dijk, Juliette; Hausrat, Torben J; Janke, Carsten; Kneussel, Matthias

    2009-05-26

    Synaptic plasticity, the ability of synapses to change in strength, requires alterations in synaptic molecule compositions over time, and synapses undergo selective modifications on stimulation. Molecular motors operate in sorting/transport of neuronal proteins; however, the targeting mechanisms that guide and direct cargo delivery remain elusive. We addressed the impact of synaptic transmission on the regulation of intracellular microtubule (MT)-based transport. We show that increased neuronal activity, as induced through GlyR activity blockade, facilitates tubulin polyglutamylation, a posttranslational modification thought to represent a molecular traffic sign for transport. Also, GlyR activity blockade alters the binding of the MT-associated protein MAP2 to MTs. By using the kinesin (KIF5) and the postsynaptic protein gephyrin as models, we show that such changes of MT tracks are accompanied by reduced motor protein mobility and cargo delivery into neurites. Notably, the observed neurite targeting deficits are prevented on functional depletion or gene expression knockdown of neuronal polyglutamylase. Our data suggest a previously undescribed concept of synaptic transmission regulating MT-dependent cargo delivery.

  10. Translational regulatory mechanisms in persistent forms of synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Kelleher, Raymond J; Govindarajan, Arvind; Tonegawa, Susumu

    2004-09-30

    Memory and synaptic plasticity exhibit distinct temporal phases, with long-lasting forms distinguished by their dependence on macromolecular synthesis. Prevailing models for the molecular mechanisms underlying long-lasting synaptic plasticity have largely focused on transcriptional regulation. However, a growing body of evidence now supports a crucial role for neuronal activity-dependent mRNA translation, which may occur in dendrites for a subset of neuronal mRNAs. Recent work has begun to define the signaling mechanisms coupling synaptic activation to the protein synthesis machinery. The ERK and mTOR signaling pathways have been shown to regulate the activity of the general translational machinery, while the translation of particular classes of mRNAs is additionally controlled by gene-specific mechanisms. Rapid enhancement of the synthesis of a diverse array of neuronal proteins through such mechanisms provides the components necessary for persistent forms of LTP and LTD. These findings have important implications for the synapse specificity and associativity of protein synthesis-dependent changes in synaptic strength.

  11. Slob, a Slowpoke channel–binding protein, modulates synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jiaming

    2011-01-01

    Modulation of ion channels by regulatory proteins within the same macromolecular complex is a well-accepted concept, but the physiological consequences of such modulation are not fully understood. Slowpoke (Slo), a potassium channel critical for action potential repolarization and transmitter release, is regulated by Slo channel–binding protein (Slob), a Drosophila melanogaster Slo (dSlo) binding partner. Slob modulates the voltage dependence of dSlo channel activation in vitro and exerts similar effects on the dSlo channel in Drosophila central nervous system neurons in vivo. In addition, Slob modulates action potential duration in these neurons. Here, we investigate further the functional consequences of the modulation of the dSlo channel by Slob in vivo, by examining larval neuromuscular synaptic transmission in flies in which Slob levels have been altered. In Slob-null flies generated through P-element mutagenesis, as well as in Slob knockdown flies generated by RNA interference (RNAi), we find an enhancement of synaptic transmission but no change in the properties of the postsynaptic muscle cell. Using targeted transgenic rescue and targeted expression of Slob-RNAi, we find that Slob expression in neurons (but not in the postsynaptic muscle cell) is critical for its effects on synaptic transmission. Furthermore, inhibition of dSlo channel activity abolishes these effects of Slob. These results suggest that presynaptic Slob, by regulating dSlo channel function, participates in the modulation of synaptic transmission. PMID:21282401

  12. Profilin2 contributes to synaptic vesicle exocytosis, neuronal excitability, and novelty-seeking behavior

    PubMed Central

    Pilo Boyl, Pietro; Di Nardo, Alessia; Mulle, Christophe; Sassoè-Pognetto, Marco; Panzanelli, Patrizia; Mele, Andrea; Kneussel, Matthias; Costantini, Vivian; Perlas, Emerald; Massimi, Marzia; Vara, Hugo; Giustetto, Maurizio; Witke, Walter

    2007-01-01

    Profilins are actin binding proteins essential for regulating cytoskeletal dynamics, however, their function in the mammalian nervous system is unknown. Here, we provide evidence that in mouse brain profilin1 and profilin2 have distinct roles in regulating synaptic actin polymerization with profilin2 preferring a WAVE-complex-mediated pathway. Mice lacking profilin2 show a block in synaptic actin polymerization in response to depolarization, which is accompanied by increased synaptic excitability of glutamatergic neurons due to higher vesicle exocytosis. These alterations in neurotransmitter release correlate with a hyperactivation of the striatum and enhanced novelty-seeking behavior in profilin2 mutant mice. Our results highlight a novel, profilin2-dependent pathway, regulating synaptic physiology, neuronal excitability, and complex behavior. PMID:17541406

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  14. CAPS-1 and CAPS-2 are essential synaptic vesicle priming proteins.

    PubMed

    Jockusch, Wolf J; Speidel, Dina; Sigler, Albrecht; Sørensen, Jakob B; Varoqueaux, Frederique; Rhee, Jeong-Seop; Brose, Nils

    2007-11-16

    Before transmitter-filled synaptic vesicles can fuse with the plasma membrane upon stimulation they have to be primed to fusion competence. The regulation of this priming process controls the strength and plasticity of synaptic transmission between neurons, which in turn determines many complex brain functions. We show that CAPS-1 and CAPS-2 are essential components of the synaptic vesicle priming machinery. CAPS-deficient neurons contain no or very few fusion competent synaptic vesicles, which causes a selective impairment of fast phasic transmitter release. Increases in the intracellular Ca(2+) levels can transiently revert this defect. Our findings demonstrate that CAPS proteins generate and maintain a highly fusion competent synaptic vesicle pool that supports phasic Ca(2+) triggered release of transmitters.

  15. In vivo BDNF modulation of adult functional and morphological synaptic plasticity at hippocampal mossy fibers.

    PubMed

    Gómez-Palacio-Schjetnan, Andrea; Escobar, Martha L

    2008-11-07

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has been proposed as a key regulator and mediator of long-term synaptic modifications related to learning and memory maintenance. Our previous studies show that application of high-frequency stimulation (HFS) sufficient to elicit LTP at the dentate gyrus (DG)-CA3 pathway produces mossy fiber structural modifications 7 days after tetanic stimulation. In the present study, we show that acute intrahippocampal microinfusion of BDNF induces a lasting potentiation of synaptic efficacy in the DG-CA3 projection of anesthetized adult rats. Furthermore, we show that BDNF functional modifications in synaptic efficacy are accompanied by a presynaptic structural long-lasting reorganization at the hippocampal mossy fiber pathway. These findings support the idea that BDNF plays an important role as synaptic messenger of activity-dependent synaptic plasticity in the adult mammalian brain, in vivo.

  16. Comparing development of synaptic proteins in rat visual, somatosensory, and frontal cortex.

    PubMed

    Pinto, Joshua G A; Jones, David G; Murphy, Kathryn M

    2013-01-01

    Two theories have influenced our understanding of cortical development: the integrated network theory, where synaptic development is coordinated across areas; and the cascade theory, where the cortex develops in a wave-like manner from sensory to non-sensory areas. These different views on cortical development raise challenges for current studies aimed at comparing detailed maturation of the connectome among cortical areas. We have taken a different approach to compare synaptic development in rat visual, somatosensory, and frontal cortex by measuring expression of pre-synaptic (synapsin and synaptophysin) proteins that regulate vesicle cycling, and post-synaptic density (PSD-95 and Gephyrin) proteins that anchor excitatory or inhibitory (E-I) receptors. We also compared development of the balances between the pairs of pre- or post-synaptic proteins, and the overall pre- to post-synaptic balance, to address functional maturation and emergence of the E-I balance. We found that development of the individual proteins and the post-synaptic index overlapped among the three cortical areas, but the pre-synaptic index matured later in frontal cortex. Finally, we applied a neuroinformatics approach using principal component analysis and found that three components captured development of the synaptic proteins. The first component accounted for 64% of the variance in protein expression and reflected total protein expression, which overlapped among the three cortical areas. The second component was gephyrin and the E-I balance, it emerged as sequential waves starting in somatosensory, then frontal, and finally visual cortex. The third component was the balance between pre- and post-synaptic proteins, and this followed a different developmental trajectory in somatosensory cortex. Together, these results give the most support to an integrated network of synaptic development, but also highlight more complex patterns of development that vary in timing and end point among the

  17. Role of DHA in aging-related changes in mouse brain synaptic plasma membrane proteome.

    PubMed

    Sidhu, Vishaldeep K; Huang, Bill X; Desai, Abhishek; Kevala, Karl; Kim, Hee-Yong

    2016-05-01

    Aging has been related to diminished cognitive function, which could be a result of ineffective synaptic function. We have previously shown that synaptic plasma membrane proteins supporting synaptic integrity and neurotransmission were downregulated in docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)-deprived brains, suggesting an important role of DHA in synaptic function. In this study, we demonstrate aging-induced synaptic proteome changes and DHA-dependent mitigation of such changes using mass spectrometry-based protein quantitation combined with western blot or messenger RNA analysis. We found significant reduction of 15 synaptic plasma membrane proteins in aging brains including fodrin-α, synaptopodin, postsynaptic density protein 95, synaptic vesicle glycoprotein 2B, synaptosomal-associated protein 25, synaptosomal-associated protein-α, N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor subunit epsilon-2 precursor, AMPA2, AP2, VGluT1, munc18-1, dynamin-1, vesicle-associated membrane protein 2, rab3A, and EAAT1, most of which are involved in synaptic transmission. Notably, the first 9 proteins were further reduced when brain DHA was depleted by diet, indicating that DHA plays an important role in sustaining these synaptic proteins downregulated during aging. Reduction of 2 of these proteins was reversed by raising the brain DHA level by supplementing aged animals with an omega-3 fatty acid sufficient diet for 2 months. The recognition memory compromised in DHA-depleted animals was also improved. Our results suggest a potential role of DHA in alleviating aging-associated cognitive decline by offsetting the loss of neurotransmission-regulating synaptic proteins involved in synaptic function.

  18. Both pre- and post-synaptic alterations contribute to aberrant cholinergic transmission in superior cervical ganglia of APP(-/-) mice.

    PubMed

    Cai, Zhao-Lin; Zhang, Jia-Jia; Chen, Ming; Wang, Jin-Zhao; Xiao, Peng; Yang, Li; Long, Cheng

    2016-11-01

    Though amyloid precursor protein (APP) can potentially be cleaved to generate the pathological amyloid β peptide (Aβ), APP itself plays an important role in regulating neuronal activity. APP deficiency causes functional impairment in cholinergic synaptic transmission and cognitive performance. However, the mechanisms underlying altered cholinergic synaptic transmission in APP knock-out mice (APP(-/-)) are poorly understood. In this study, we conducted in vivo extracellular recording to investigate cholinergic compound action potentials (CAPs) of the superior cervical ganglion (SCG) in APP(-/-) and littermate wild-type (WT) mice. Our results demonstrate that APP not only regulates presynaptic activity, but also affects postsynaptic function at cholinergic synapses in SCG. APP deficiency reduces the number of vesicles in presynaptic terminalsand attenuatesthe amplitude of CAPs, likely due to dysfunction of high-affinity choline transporters. Pharmacological and biochemical examination showed that postsynaptic responsesmediated by α4β2 and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are reduced in the absence of APP. Our research provides evidences on how APP regulates cholinergic function and therefore may help to identify potential therapeutic targets to treat cholinergic dysfunction associated with Alzheimer's disease pathogenesis.

  19. Botulinum neurotoxin type-A enters a non-recycling pool of synaptic vesicles.

    PubMed

    Harper, Callista B; Papadopulos, Andreas; Martin, Sally; Matthews, Daniel R; Morgan, Garry P; Nguyen, Tam H; Wang, Tong; Nair, Deepak; Choquet, Daniel; Meunier, Frederic A

    2016-01-25

    Neuronal communication relies on synaptic vesicles undergoing regulated exocytosis and recycling for multiple rounds of fusion. Whether all synaptic vesicles have identical protein content has been challenged, suggesting that their recycling ability may differ greatly. Botulinum neurotoxin type-A (BoNT/A) is a highly potent neurotoxin that is internalized in synaptic vesicles at motor nerve terminals and induces flaccid paralysis. Recently, BoNT/A was also shown to undergo retrograde transport, suggesting it might enter a specific pool of synaptic vesicles with a retrograde trafficking fate. Using high-resolution microscopy techniques including electron microscopy and single molecule imaging, we found that the BoNT/A binding domain is internalized within a subset of vesicles that only partially co-localize with cholera toxin B-subunit and have markedly reduced VAMP2 immunoreactivity. Synaptic vesicles loaded with pHrodo-BoNT/A-Hc exhibited a significantly reduced ability to fuse with the plasma membrane in mouse hippocampal nerve terminals when compared with pHrodo-dextran-containing synaptic vesicles and pHrodo-labeled anti-GFP nanobodies bound to VAMP2-pHluorin or vGlut-pHluorin. Similar results were also obtained at the amphibian neuromuscular junction. These results reveal that BoNT/A is internalized in a subpopulation of synaptic vesicles that are not destined to recycle, highlighting the existence of significant molecular and functional heterogeneity between synaptic vesicles.

  20. Botulinum neurotoxin type-A enters a non-recycling pool of synaptic vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Harper, Callista B.; Papadopulos, Andreas; Martin, Sally; Matthews, Daniel R.; Morgan, Garry P.; Nguyen, Tam H.; Wang, Tong; Nair, Deepak; Choquet, Daniel; Meunier, Frederic A.

    2016-01-01

    Neuronal communication relies on synaptic vesicles undergoing regulated exocytosis and recycling for multiple rounds of fusion. Whether all synaptic vesicles have identical protein content has been challenged, suggesting that their recycling ability may differ greatly. Botulinum neurotoxin type-A (BoNT/A) is a highly potent neurotoxin that is internalized in synaptic vesicles at motor nerve terminals and induces flaccid paralysis. Recently, BoNT/A was also shown to undergo retrograde transport, suggesting it might enter a specific pool of synaptic vesicles with a retrograde trafficking fate. Using high-resolution microscopy techniques including electron microscopy and single molecule imaging, we found that the BoNT/A binding domain is internalized within a subset of vesicles that only partially co-localize with cholera toxin B-subunit and have markedly reduced VAMP2 immunoreactivity. Synaptic vesicles loaded with pHrodo-BoNT/A-Hc exhibited a significantly reduced ability to fuse with the plasma membrane in mouse hippocampal nerve terminals when compared with pHrodo-dextran-containing synaptic vesicles and pHrodo-labeled anti-GFP nanobodies bound to VAMP2-pHluorin or vGlut-pHluorin. Similar results were also obtained at the amphibian neuromuscular junction. These results reveal that BoNT/A is internalized in a subpopulation of synaptic vesicles that are not destined to recycle, highlighting the existence of significant molecular and functional heterogeneity between synaptic vesicles. PMID:26805017

  1. The initiation of post-synaptic protrusions

    PubMed Central

    Hotulainen, Pirta; Saarikangas, Juha

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The post-synaptic spines of neuronal dendrites are highly elaborate membrane protrusions. Their anatomy, stability and density are intimately linked to cognitive performance. The morphological transitions of spines are powered by coordinated polymerization of actin filaments against the plasma membrane, but how the membrane-associated polymerization is spatially and temporally regulated has remained ill defined. Here, we discuss our recent findings showing that dendritic spines can be initiated by direct membrane bending by the I-BAR protein MIM/Mtss1. This lipid phosphatidylinositol (PI(4,5)P2) signaling-activated membrane bending coordinated spatial actin assembly and promoted spine formation. From recent advances, we formulate a general model to discuss how spatially concentrated protein-lipid microdomains formed by multivalent interactions between lipids and actin/membrane regulatory proteins might launch cell protrusions. PMID:27489575

  2. Sumoylation in Synaptic Function and Dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Schorova, Lenka; Martin, Stéphane

    2016-01-01

    Sumoylation has recently emerged as a key post-translational modification involved in many, if not all, biological processes. Small Ubiquitin-like Modifier (SUMO) polypeptides are covalently attached to specific lysine residues of target proteins through a dedicated enzymatic pathway. Disruption of the SUMO enzymatic pathway in the developing brain leads to lethality indicating that this process exerts a central role during embryonic and post-natal development. However, little is still known regarding how this highly dynamic protein modification is regulated in the mammalian brain despite an increasing number of data implicating sumoylated substrates in synapse formation, synaptic communication and plasticity. The aim of this review is therefore to briefly describe the enzymatic SUMO pathway and to give an overview of our current knowledge on the function and dysfunction of protein sumoylation at the mammalian synapse.

  3. The low synaptic release probability in vivo.

    PubMed

    Borst, J Gerard G

    2010-06-01

    The release probability, the average probability that an active zone of a presynaptic terminal releases one or more vesicles following an action potential, is tightly regulated. Measurements in cultured neurons or in slices indicate that this probability can vary greatly between synapses, but on average it is estimated to be as high as 0.5. In vivo, however, the size of synaptic potentials is relatively independent of recent history, suggesting that release probability is much lower. Possible causes for this discrepancy include maturational differences, a higher spontaneous activity, a lower extracellular calcium concentration and more prominent tonic inhibition by ambient neurotransmitters during in vivo recordings. Existing evidence thus suggests that under physiological conditions in vivo, presynaptic action potentials trigger the release of neurotransmitter much less frequently than what is observed in in vitro preparations.

  4. Sumoylation in Synaptic Function and Dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Schorova, Lenka; Martin, Stéphane

    2016-01-01

    Sumoylation has recently emerged as a key post-translational modification involved in many, if not all, biological processes. Small Ubiquitin-like Modifier (SUMO) polypeptides are covalently attached to specific lysine residues of target proteins through a dedicated enzymatic pathway. Disruption of the SUMO enzymatic pathway in the developing brain leads to lethality indicating that this process exerts a central role during embryonic and post-natal development. However, little is still known regarding how this highly dynamic protein modification is regulated in the mammalian brain despite an increasing number of data implicating sumoylated substrates in synapse formation, synaptic communication and plasticity. The aim of this review is therefore to briefly describe the enzymatic SUMO pathway and to give an overview of our current knowledge on the function and dysfunction of protein sumoylation at the mammalian synapse. PMID:27199730

  5. Open Syntaxin Docks Synaptic Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Olsen, Shawn; Jorgensen, Erik M

    2007-01-01

    Synaptic vesicles dock to the plasma membrane at synapses to facilitate rapid exocytosis. Docking was originally proposed to require the soluble N-ethylmaleimide–sensitive fusion attachment protein receptor (SNARE) proteins; however, perturbation studies suggested that docking was independent of the SNARE proteins. We now find that the SNARE protein syntaxin is required for docking of all vesicles at synapses in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. The active zone protein UNC-13, which interacts with syntaxin, is also required for docking in the active zone. The docking defects in unc-13 mutants can be fully rescued by overexpressing a constitutively open form of syntaxin, but not by wild-type syntaxin. These experiments support a model for docking in which UNC-13 converts syntaxin from the closed to the open state, and open syntaxin acts directly in docking vesicles to the plasma membrane. These data provide a molecular basis for synaptic vesicle docking. PMID:17645391

  6. Synaptic dynamics and decision making

    PubMed Central

    Deco, Gustavo; Rolls, Edmund T.; Romo, Ranulfo

    2010-01-01

    During decision making between sequential stimuli, the first stimulus must be held in memory and then compared with the second. Here, we show that in systems that encode the stimuli by their firing rate, neurons can use synaptic facilitation not only to remember the first stimulus during the delay but during the presentation of the second stimulus so that they respond to a combination of the first and second stimuli, as has been found for “partial differential” neurons recorded in the ventral premotor cortex during vibrotactile flutter frequency decision making. Moreover, we show that such partial differential neurons provide important input to a subsequent attractor decision-making network that can then compare this combination of the first and second stimuli with inputs from other neurons that respond only to the second stimulus. Thus, both synaptic facilitation and neuronal attractor dynamics can account for sequential decision making in such systems in the brain. PMID:20360555

  7. Optimal Degrees of Synaptic Connectivity.

    PubMed

    Litwin-Kumar, Ashok; Harris, Kameron Decker; Axel, Richard; Sompolinsky, Haim; Abbott, L F

    2017-03-08

    Synaptic connectivity varies widely across neuronal types. Cerebellar granule cells receive five orders of magnitude fewer inputs than the Purkinje cells they innervate, and cerebellum-like circuits, including the insect mushroom body, also exhibit large divergences in connectivity. In contrast, the number of inputs per neuron in cerebral cortex is more uniform and large. We investigate how the dimension of a representation formed by a population of neurons depends on how many inputs each neuron receives and what this implies for learning associations. Our theory predicts that the dimensions of the cerebellar granule-cell and Drosophila Kenyon-cell representations are maximized at degrees of synaptic connectivity that match those observed anatomically, showing that sparse connectivity is sometimes superior to dense connectivity. When input synapses are subject to supervised plasticity, however, dense wiring becomes advantageous, suggesting that the type of plasticity exhibited by a set of synapses is a major determinant of connection density.

  8. DHHC8-dependent PICK1 palmitoylation is required for induction of cerebellar long-term synaptic depression.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Gareth M; Hayashi, Takashi; Huganir, Richard L; Linden, David J

    2013-09-25

    The palmitoyl acyltransferase (PAT) DHHC8 is implicated in synaptic regulation but few DHHC8 substrates are known. Here we report that DHHC8 binds and palmitoylates the PDZ domain-containing protein PICK1 at a cysteine residue that is essential for long-term synaptic depression (LTD) in cultured mouse cerebellar Purkinje neurons. Cerebellar LTD is palmitoylation-dependent and induction of LTD requires DHHC8. Furthermore, PICK1 is a critical DHHC8 substrate whose palmitoylation is necessary for LTD. These results identify the first DHHC8 substrate required for a specific form of synaptic plasticity and provide new insights into synaptic roles of palmitoylation.

  9. Synaptic Plasticity and Memory Formation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1994-05-31

    The name " Ampakines " has been used to describe this family; when more is known about structure-activity relationships, it should be possible to...regarding the physiological effects of the drugs. Excised patch studies have shown that Ampakines prolong the duration of AMPA receptor-mediated...also revealed that Ampakines produce the expected facilitation and prolongation of synaptic responses in situ; these drugs are thus the first compounds

  10. Synaptic NMDA receptor stimulation activates PP1 by inhibiting its phosphorylation by Cdk5

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Hailong; Sun, Lu; Siddoway, Benjamin A.; Petralia, Ronald S.; Yang, Hongtian; Gu, Hua; Nairn, Angus C.

    2013-01-01

    The serine/threonine protein phosphatase protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) is known to play an important role in learning and memory by mediating local and downstream aspects of synaptic signaling, but how PP1 activity is controlled in different forms of synaptic plasticity remains unknown. We find that synaptic N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor stimulation in neurons leads to activation of PP1 through a mechanism involving inhibitory phosphorylation at Thr320 by Cdk5. Synaptic stimulation led to proteasome-dependent degradation of the Cdk5 regulator p35, inactivation of Cdk5, and increased auto-dephosphorylation of Thr320 of PP1. We also found that neither inhibitor-1 nor calcineurin were involved in the control of PP1 activity in response to synaptic NMDA receptor stimulation. Rather, the PP1 regulatory protein, inhibitor-2, formed a complex with PP1 that was controlled by synaptic stimulation. Finally, we found that inhibitor-2 was critical for the induction of long-term depression in primary neurons. Our work fills a major gap regarding the regulation of PP1 in synaptic plasticity. PMID:24189275

  11. Amyloid Beta as a Modulator of Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Parihar, Mordhwaj S; Brewer, Gregory J

    2011-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease is associated with synapse loss, memory dysfunction and pathological accumulation of amyloid beta in plaques. However, an exclusively pathological role for amyloid beta is being challenged by new evidence for an essential function of amyloid beta at the synapse. Amyloid beta protein exists in different assembly states in the central nervous system and plays distinct roles ranging from synapse and memory formation to memory loss and neuronal cell death. Amyloid beta is present in the brain of symptom-free people where it likely performs important physiological roles. New evidence indicates that synaptic activity directly evokes the release of amyloid beta at the synapse. At physiological levels, amyloid beta is a normal, soluble product of neuronal metabolism that regulates synaptic function beginning early in life. Monomeric amyloid beta 40 and 42 are the predominant forms required for synaptic plasticity and neuronal survival. With age, some assemblies of amyloid beta are associated with synaptic failure and Alzheimer’s disease pathology, possibly targeting the N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) receptor through the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR), mitochondrial amyloid-β alcohol dehydrogenase (ABAD) and cyclophilin D. But emerging data suggests a distinction between age effects on the target response in contrast to the assembly state or the accumulation of the peptide. Both aging and beta amyloid independently decrease neuronal plasticity. Our laboratory has reported that amyloid beta, glutamate and lactic acid are each increasingly toxic with neuron age. The basis of the age-related toxicity partly resides in age-related mitochondrial dysfunction and an oxidative shift in mitochondrial and cytoplasmic redox potential. In turn, signaling through phosphorylated extracellular signal-regulated protein kinases (pERK) is affected along with an age-independent increase in phosphorylated cAMP response element-binding protein (p

  12. Memory and synaptic deficits in Hip14/DHHC17 knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Milnerwood, Austen J; Parsons, Matthew P; Young, Fiona B; Singaraja, Roshni R; Franciosi, Sonia; Volta, Mattia; Bergeron, Sabrina; Hayden, Michael R; Raymond, Lynn A

    2013-12-10

    Palmitoylation of neurotransmitter receptors and associated scaffold proteins regulates their membrane association in a rapid, reversible, and activity-dependent fashion. This makes palmitoylation an attractive candidate as a key regulator of the fast, reversible, and activity-dependent insertion of synaptic proteins required during the induction and expression of long-term plasticity. Here we describe that the constitutive loss of huntingtin interacting protein 14 (Hip14, also known as DHHC17), a single member of the broad palmitoyl acyltransferase (PAT) family, produces marked alterations in synaptic function in varied brain regions and significantly impairs hippocampal memory and synaptic plasticity. The data presented suggest that, even though the substrate pool is overlapping for the 23 known PAT family members, the function of a single PAT has marked effects upon physiology and cognition. Moreover, an improved understanding of the role of PATs in synaptic modification and maintenance highlights a potential strategy for intervention against early cognitive impairments in neurodegenerative disease.

  13. Analysis of synaptic gene expression in the neocortex of primates reveals evolutionary changes in glutamatergic neurotransmission.

    PubMed

    Muntané, Gerard; Horvath, Julie E; Hof, Patrick R; Ely, John J; Hopkins, William D; Raghanti, Mary Ann; Lewandowski, Albert H; Wray, Gregory A; Sherwood, Chet C

    2015-06-01

    Increased relative brain size characterizes the evolution of primates, suggesting that enhanced cognition plays an important part in the behavioral adaptations of this mammalian order. In addition to changes in brain anatomy, cognition can also be regulated by molecular changes that alter synaptic function, but little is known about modifications of synapses in primate brain evolution. The aim of the current study was to investigate the expression patterns and evolution of 20 synaptic genes from the prefrontal cortex of 12 primate species. The genes investigated included glutamate receptors, scaffolding proteins, synaptic vesicle components, as well as factors involved in synaptic vesicle release and structural components of the nervous system. Our analyses revealed that there have been significant changes during primate brain evolution in the components of the glutamatergic signaling pathway in terms of gene expression, protein expression, and promoter sequence changes. These results could entail functional modifications in the regulation of specific genes related to processes underlying learning and memory.

  14. Analysis of Synaptic Gene Expression in the Neocortex of Primates Reveals Evolutionary Changes in Glutamatergic Neurotransmission

    PubMed Central

    Muntané, Gerard; Horvath, Julie E.; Hof, Patrick R.; Ely, John J.; Hopkins, William D.; Raghanti, Mary Ann; Lewandowski, Albert H.; Wray, Gregory A.; Sherwood, Chet C.

    2015-01-01

    Increased relative brain size characterizes the evolution of primates, suggesting that enhanced cognition plays an important part in the behavioral adaptations of this mammalian order. In addition to changes in brain anatomy, cognition can also be regulated by molecular changes that alter synaptic function, but little is known about modifications of synapses in primate brain evolution. The aim of the current study was to investigate the expression patterns and evolution of 20 synaptic genes from the prefrontal cortex of 12 primate species. The genes investigated included glutamate receptors, scaffolding proteins, synaptic vesicle components, as well as factors involved in synaptic vesicle release and structural components of the nervous system. Our analyses revealed that there have been significant changes during primate brain evolution in the components of the glutamatergic signaling pathway in terms of gene expression, protein expression, and promoter sequence changes. These results could entail functional modifications in the regulation of specific genes related to processes underlying learning and memory. PMID:24408959

  15. How do astrocytes shape synaptic transmission? Insights from electrophysiology

    PubMed Central

    Dallérac, Glenn; Chever, Oana; Rouach, Nathalie

    2013-01-01

    A major breakthrough in neuroscience has been the realization in the last decades that the dogmatic view of astroglial cells as being merely fostering and buffering elements of the nervous system is simplistic. A wealth of investigations now shows that astrocytes actually participate in the control of synaptic transmission in an active manner. This was first hinted by the intimate contacts glial processes make with neurons, particularly at the synaptic level, and evidenced using electrophysiological and calcium imaging techniques. Calcium imaging has provided critical evidence demonstrating that astrocytic regulation of synaptic efficacy is not a passive phenomenon. However, given that cellular activation is not only represented by calcium signaling, it is also crucial to assess concomitant mechanisms. We and others have used electrophysiological techniques to simultaneously record neuronal and astrocytic activity, thus enabling the study of multiple ionic currents and in depth investigation of neuro-glial dialogues. In the current review, we focus on the input such approach has provided in the understanding of astrocyte-neuron interactions underlying control of synaptic efficacy. PMID:24101894

  16. Capsaicin augments synaptic transmission in the rat medial preoptic nucleus.

    PubMed

    Karlsson, Urban; Sundgren-Andersson, Anna K; Johansson, Staffan; Krupp, Johannes J

    2005-05-10

    The medial preoptic nucleus (MPN) is the major nucleus of the preoptic area (POA), a hypothalamic area involved in the regulation of body-temperature. Injection of capsaicin into this area causes hypothermia in vivo. Capsaicin also causes glutamate release from hypothalamic slices. However, no data are available on the effect of capsaicin on synaptic transmission within the MPN. Here, we have studied the effect of exogenously applied capsaicin on spontaneous synaptic activity in hypothalamic slices of the rat. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were made from visually identified neurons located in the MPN. In a subset of the studied neurons, capsaicin enhanced the frequency of spontaneous glutamatergic EPSCs. Remarkably, capsaicin also increased the frequency of GABAergic IPSCs, an effect that was sensitive to removal of extracellular calcium, but insensitive to tetrodotoxin. This suggests an action of capsaicin at presynaptic GABAergic terminals. In contrast to capsaicin, the TRPV4 agonist 4alpha-PDD did not affect GABAergic IPSCs. Our results show that capsaicin directly affects synaptic transmission in the MPN, likely through actions at presynaptic terminals as well as on projecting neurons. Our data add to the growing evidence that capsaicin receptors are not only expressed in primary afferent neurons, but also contribute to synaptic processing in some CNS regions.

  17. Synaptic amplification by dendritic spines enhances input cooperativity.

    PubMed

    Harnett, Mark T; Makara, Judit K; Spruston, Nelson; Kath, William L; Magee, Jeffrey C

    2012-11-22

    Dendritic spines are the nearly ubiquitous site of excitatory synaptic input onto neurons and as such are critically positioned to influence diverse aspects of neuronal signalling. Decades of theoretical studies have proposed that spines may function as highly effective and modifiable chemical and electrical compartments that regulate synaptic efficacy, integration and plasticity. Experimental studies have confirmed activity-dependent structural dynamics and biochemical compartmentalization by spines. However, there is a longstanding debate over the influence of spines on the electrical aspects of synaptic transmission and dendritic operation. Here we measure the amplitude ratio of spine head to parent dendrite voltage across a range of dendritic compartments and calculate the associated spine neck resistance (R(neck)) for spines at apical trunk dendrites in rat hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons. We find that R(neck) is large enough (~500 MΩ) to amplify substantially the spine head depolarization associated with a unitary synaptic input by ~1.5- to ~45-fold, depending on parent dendritic impedance. A morphologically realistic compartmental model capable of reproducing the observed spatial profile of the amplitude ratio indicates that spines provide a consistently high-impedance input structure throughout the dendritic arborization. Finally, we demonstrate that the amplification produced by spines encourages electrical interaction among coactive inputs through an R(neck)-dependent increase in spine head voltage-gated conductance activation. We conclude that the electrical properties of spines promote nonlinear dendritic processing and associated forms of plasticity and storage, thus fundamentally enhancing the computational capabilities of neurons.

  18. Diffusion dynamics of synaptic molecules during inhibitory postsynaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Petrini, Enrica Maria; Barberis, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    The plasticity of inhibitory transmission is expected to play a key role in the modulation of neuronal excitability and network function. Over the last two decades, the investigation of the determinants of inhibitory synaptic plasticity has allowed distinguishing presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms. While there has been a remarkable progress in the characterization of presynaptically-expressed plasticity of inhibition, the postsynaptic mechanisms of inhibitory long-term synaptic plasticity only begin to be unraveled. At postsynaptic level, the expression of inhibitory synaptic plasticity involves the rearrangement of the postsynaptic molecular components of the GABAergic synapse, including GABAA receptors, scaffold proteins and structural molecules. This implies a dynamic modulation of receptor intracellular trafficking and receptor surface lateral diffusion, along with regulation of the availability and distribution of scaffold proteins. This Review will focus on the mechanisms of the multifaceted molecular reorganization of the inhibitory synapse during postsynaptic plasticity, with special emphasis on the key role of protein dynamics to ensure prompt and reliable activity-dependent adjustments of synaptic strength. PMID:25294987

  19. N-Glycosylation at the SynCAM (Synaptic Cell Adhesion Molecule) Immunoglobulin Interface Modulates Synaptic Adhesion

    SciTech Connect

    A Fogel; Y Li; Q Wang; T Lam; Y Modis; T Biederer

    2011-12-31

    Select adhesion molecules connect pre- and postsynaptic membranes and organize developing synapses. The regulation of these trans-synaptic interactions is an important neurobiological question. We have previously shown that the synaptic cell adhesion molecules (SynCAMs) 1 and 2 engage in homo- and heterophilic interactions and bridge the synaptic cleft to induce presynaptic terminals. Here, we demonstrate that site-specific N-glycosylation impacts the structure and function of adhesive SynCAM interactions. Through crystallographic analysis of SynCAM 2, we identified within the adhesive interface of its Ig1 domain an N-glycan on residue Asn(60). Structural modeling of the corresponding SynCAM 1 Ig1 domain indicates that its glycosylation sites Asn(70)/Asn(104) flank the binding interface of this domain. Mass spectrometric and mutational studies confirm and characterize the modification of these three sites. These site-specific N-glycans affect SynCAM adhesion yet act in a differential manner. Although glycosylation of SynCAM 2 at Asn(60) reduces adhesion, N-glycans at Asn(70)/Asn(104) of SynCAM 1 increase its interactions. The modification of SynCAM 1 with sialic acids contributes to the glycan-dependent strengthening of its binding. Functionally, N-glycosylation promotes the trans-synaptic interactions of SynCAM 1 and is required for synapse induction. These results demonstrate that N-glycosylation of SynCAM proteins differentially affects their binding interface and implicate post-translational modification as a mechanism to regulate trans-synaptic adhesion.

  20. Sapap3 deletion anomalously activates short-term endocannabinoid-mediated synaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Meng; Wan, Yehong; Ade, Kristen; Ting, Jonathan; Feng, Guoping; Calakos, Nicole

    2011-01-01

    Retrograde synaptic signaling by endocannabinoids is a widespread mechanism for activity-dependent inhibition of synaptic strength in the brain. Although prevalent, the conditions for eliciting endocannabinoid (eCB)-mediated synaptic depression vary among brain circuits. As yet, relatively little is known about the molecular mechanisms underlying this variation, although the initial signaling events are likely dictated by postsynaptic proteins. SAPAPs are a family of postsynaptic proteins unique to excitatory synapses. Using Sapap3 knock-out (KO) mice, we find that, in the absence of SAPAP3, striatal medium spiny neuron (MSN) excitatory synapses exhibit eCB-mediated synaptic depression under conditions that do not normally activate this process. The anomalous synaptic plasticity requires type 5 metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR5), which are dysregulated in Sapap3 KO MSNs. Both surface expression and activity of mGluR5 are increased in Sapap3 KO MSNs, suggesting that enhanced mGluR5 activity may drive the anomalous synaptic plasticity. In direct support of this possibility, we find that, in wildtype (WT) MSNs, pharmacological enhancement of mGluR5 by a positive allosteric modulator is sufficient to reproduce the increased synaptic depression seen in Sapap3 KO MSNs. The same pharmacologic treatment, however, fails to elicit further depression in KO MSNs. Under conditions that are sufficient to engage eCB-mediated synaptic depression in WT MSNs, Sapap3 deletion does not alter the magnitude of the response. These results identify a role for SAPAP3 in the regulation of postsynaptic mGluRs and eCB-mediated synaptic plasticity. SAPAPs, through their effect on mGluR activity, may serve as regulatory molecules gating the threshold for inducing eCB-mediated synaptic plasticity. PMID:21715621

  1. Epigenetic Basis of Neuronal and Synaptic Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Karpova, Nina N; Sales, Amanda J; Joca, Samia R

    2017-01-01

    Neuronal network and plasticity change as a function of experience. Altered neural connectivity leads to distinct transcriptional programs of neuronal plasticity-related genes. The environmental challenges throughout life may promote long-lasting reprogramming of gene expression and the development of brain disorders. The modifications in neuronal epigenome mediate gene-environmental interactions and are required for activity-dependent regulation of neuronal differentiation, maturation and plasticity. Here, we highlight the latest advances in understanding the role of the main players of epigenetic machinery (DNA methylation and demethylation, histone modifications, chromatin-remodeling enzymes, transposons, and non-coding RNAs) in activity-dependent and long- term neural and synaptic plasticity. The review focuses on both the transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression levels, including the processes of promoter activation, alternative splicing, regulation of stability of gene transcripts by natural antisense RNAs, and alternative polyadenylation. Further, we discuss the epigenetic aspects of impaired neuronal plasticity and the pathogenesis of neurodevelopmental (Rett syndrome, Fragile X Syndrome, genomic imprinting disorders, schizophrenia, and others), stressrelated (mood disorders) and neurodegenerative Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Huntington's disorders. The review also highlights the pharmacological compounds that modulate epigenetic programming of gene expression, the potential treatment strategies of discussed brain disorders, and the questions that should be addressed during the development of effective and safe approaches for the treatment of brain disorders.

  2. [The regulation of antitumor immune responses by helper T cells--From the bench research to the discovery of H/K-HELP cancer vaccine].

    PubMed

    Nishimura, Takashi

    2012-01-01

    During past decades, cancer vaccine therapy has been focused on only the activation of CTL, but its therapeutic effect was not successful though long SD was induced. The failure of cancer vaccine is derived from (i) the existence of a strong tumor escape mechanisms and (ii) the ignorance of helper T cell activation. We have proposed that Th1-dominant immunity played a critical role for overcoming immunosuppressive tumor-escape mechanisms to induce tumor-specific CTL, which are essential for the complete cure of tumor and prevention of tumor recurrence. To apply these basic findings, we started a clinical trial of a novel cancer vaccine/cell therapy (Th1 cell therapy) using H/K-HELP of MAGE-A4 or Survivin cancer antigen. In phase I study, H/K-HELP consisted of both killer and helper epitopes and Th1 adjuvants (OK-432 and Montanide) were subcutaneously administered into cancer patients 4 times at 2 wks intervals. Both MAGE-A4-H/K-HELP and Survivin-H/K-HELP cancer vaccine induced cancer-specific Th1 and Tc1 immune responses and cancer-specific C-fixing antibodies (IgG1 and IgG3) in cancer patients. Moreover, Survivin-H/K-HELP vaccination induced a complete regression of chemo and radio-resistant lateral deep cervical node recurrence of triple-negative breast cancer. H/K-HELP vaccination with Th1 adjuvants or its combination with Th1 cells will become a promising cancer vaccine/cell therapy of human cancer.

  3. Variable priming of a docked synaptic vesicle

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Jae Hoon; Szule, Joseph A.; Marshall, Robert M.; McMahan, Uel J.

    2016-01-01

    The priming of a docked synaptic vesicle determines the probability of its membrane (VM) fusing with the presynaptic membrane (PM) when a nerve impulse arrives. To gain insight into the nature of priming, we searched by electron tomography for structural relationships correlated with fusion probability at active zones of axon terminals at frog neuromuscular junctions. For terminals fixed at rest, the contact area between the VM of docked vesicles and PM varied >10-fold with a normal distribution. There was no merging of the membranes. For terminals fixed during repetitive evoked synaptic transmission, the normal distribution of contact areas was shifted to the left, due in part to a decreased number of large contact areas, and there was a subpopulation of large contact areas where the membranes were hemifused, an intermediate preceding complete fusion. Thus, fusion probability of a docked vesicle is related to the extent of its VM–PM contact area. For terminals fixed 1 h after activity, the distribution of contact areas recovered to that at rest, indicating the extent of a VM–PM contact area is dynamic and in equilibrium. The extent of VM–PM contact areas in resting terminals correlated with eccentricity in vesicle shape caused by force toward the PM and with shortness of active zone material macromolecules linking vesicles to PM components, some thought to include Ca2+ channels. We propose that priming is a variable continuum of events imposing variable fusion probability on each vesicle and is regulated by force-generating shortening of active zone material macromolecules in dynamic equilibrium. PMID:26858418

  4. Reflections on the specificity of synaptic connections.

    PubMed

    White, Edward L

    2007-10-01

    The principal focus of this treatise is the specificity of synaptic connectivity in the mammalian central nervous system. The occurrence of stereotypical patterns of connection at the macro level (e.g., the general consistency with which axonal pathways impinge on and originate within specific cortical areas and layers) implies that the cerebral cortex is a highly ordered structure. Order is seen also at the more micro level of synaptic connectivity, for instance, in the contrasting synaptic patterns of spiny vs. non-spiny neurons. Quantitative electron microscopic studies of synapses between identified neurons and correlative anatomical/electrophysiological investigations indicate that the high degree of order characterizing many aspects of cortical organization is mirrored by an equally ordered arrangement of synaptic connections between specific types of neurons. The recognition of recurring synaptic patterns has generated increased support for the notion of synaptic specificity as opposed to randomness, and we have begun now to understand the role of specificity in cortical function. At the core of cortical processing lie myriad possibilities for computation provided by the wealth of synaptic connections involving each neuron. Specificity, by limiting possibilities for connection, imposes an order on synaptic interactions even as processes of dynamic selection or synaptic remodeling ensure the constant formation and dissolution of cortical circuits. Collectively, these operations make maximal use of the richness of cortical synaptic connections to produce a highly flexible system, irrespective of the degree of hard-wiring, mutability, randomness or specificity that obtains for cortical wiring at any particular time. A brief, historical account of developments leading to our current understanding of cortical synaptic organization will precede the presentation of evidence for synaptic specificity.

  5. Graded Synaptic Transmission between Spiking Neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graubard, Katherine; Raper, Jonathan A.; Hartline, Daniel K.

    1980-06-01

    Graded synaptic transmission occurs between spiking neurons of the lobster stomatogastric ganglion. In addition to eliciting spike-evoked inhibitory potentials in postsynaptic cells, these neurons also release functionally significant amounts of transmitter below the threshold for action potentials. The spikeless postsynaptic potentials grade in amplitude with presynaptic voltage and can be maintained for long periods. Graded synaptic transmission can be modulated by synaptic input to the presynaptic neuron.

  6. Random synaptic feedback weights support error backpropagation for deep learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lillicrap, Timothy P.; Cownden, Daniel; Tweed, Douglas B.; Akerman, Colin J.

    2016-11-01

    The brain processes information through multiple layers of neurons. This deep architecture is representationally powerful, but complicates learning because it is difficult to identify the responsible neurons when a mistake is made. In machine learning, the backpropagation algorithm assigns blame by multiplying error signals with all the synaptic weights on each neuron's axon and further downstream. However, this involves a precise, symmetric backward connectivity pattern, which is thought to be impossible in the brain. Here we demonstrate that this strong architectural constraint is not required for effective error propagation. We present a surprisingly simple mechanism that assigns blame by multiplying errors by even random synaptic weights. This mechanism can transmit teaching signals across multiple layers of neurons and performs as effectively as backpropagation on a variety of tasks. Our results help reopen questions about how the brain could use error signals and dispel long-held assumptions about algorithmic constraints on learning.

  7. Random synaptic feedback weights support error backpropagation for deep learning.

    PubMed

    Lillicrap, Timothy P; Cownden, Daniel; Tweed, Douglas B; Akerman, Colin J

    2016-11-08

    The brain processes information through multiple layers of neurons. This deep architecture is representationally powerful, but complicates learning because it is difficult to identify the responsible neurons when a mistake is made. In machine learning, the backpropagation algorithm assigns blame by multiplying error signals with all the synaptic weights on each neuron's axon and further downstream. However, this involves a precise, symmetric backward connectivity pattern, which is thought to be impossible in the brain. Here we demonstrate that this strong architectural constraint is not required for effective error propagation. We present a surprisingly simple mechanism that assigns blame by multiplying errors by even random synaptic weights. This mechanism can transmit teaching signals across multiple layers of neurons and performs as effectively as backpropagation on a variety of tasks. Our results help reopen questions about how the brain could use error signals and dispel long-held assumptions about algorithmic constraints on learning.

  8. Random synaptic feedback weights support error backpropagation for deep learning

    PubMed Central

    Lillicrap, Timothy P.; Cownden, Daniel; Tweed, Douglas B.; Akerman, Colin J.

    2016-01-01

    The brain processes information through multiple layers of neurons. This deep architecture is representationally powerful, but complicates learning because it is difficult to identify the responsible neurons when a mistake is made. In machine learning, the backpropagation algorithm assigns blame by multiplying error signals with all the synaptic weights on each neuron's axon and further downstream. However, this involves a precise, symmetric backward connectivity pattern, which is thought to be impossible in the brain. Here we demonstrate that this strong architectural constraint is not required for effective error propagation. We present a surprisingly simple mechanism that assigns blame by multiplying errors by even random synaptic weights. This mechanism can transmit teaching signals across multiple layers of neurons and performs as effectively as backpropagation on a variety of tasks. Our results help reopen questions about how the brain could use error signals and dispel long-held assumptions about algorithmic constraints on learning. PMID:27824044

  9. Nonvolatile programmable neural network synaptic array

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tawel, Raoul (Inventor)

    1994-01-01

    A floating-gate metal oxide semiconductor (MOS) transistor is implemented for use as a nonvolatile analog storage element of a synaptic cell used to implement an array of processing synaptic cells. These cells are based on a four-quadrant analog multiplier requiring both X and Y differential inputs, where one Y input is UV programmable. These nonvolatile synaptic cells are disclosed fully connected in a 32 x 32 synaptic cell array using standard very large scale integration (VLSI) complementary MOS (CMOS) technology.

  10. Synaptic NMDA Receptors Mediate Hypoxic Excitotoxic Death

    PubMed Central

    Wroge, Christine M.; Hogins, Joshua; Eisenman, Larry; Mennerick, Steven

    2012-01-01

    Excessive NMDA receptor activation and excitotoxicity underlies pathology in many neuropsychiatric and neurological disorders, including hypoxia/ischemia. Thus, the development of effective therapeutics for these disorders demands a complete understanding of NMDA receptor (NMDAR) activation during excitotoxic insults. The extrasynaptic NMDAR hypothesis posits that synaptic NMDARs are neurotrophic/neuroprotective and extrasynaptic NMDARs are neurotoxic. In part, the extrasynaptic hypothesis is built on observed selectivity for extrasynaptic receptors of a neuroprotective use-dependent NMDAR channel blocker, memantine. In rat hippocampal neurons we found that a neuroprotective concentration of memantine shows little selectivity for extrasynaptic NMDARs when all receptors are tonically activated by exogenous glutamate. This led us to test the extrasynaptic NMDAR hypothesis using metabolic challenge, where the source of excitotoxic glutamate buildup may be largely synaptic. Three independent approaches suggest strongly that synaptic receptors participate prominently in hypoxic excitotoxicity. First, block of glutamate transporters with a non-substrate antagonist exacerbated rather than prevented damage, consistent with a primarily synaptic source of glutamate. Second, selective, preblock of synaptic NMDARs with a slowly reversible, use-dependent antagonist protected nearly fully against prolonged hypoxic insult. Third, glutamate pyruvate transaminase (GPT), which degrades ambient but not synaptic glutamate, did not protect against hypoxia but protected against exogenous glutamate damage. Together, these results suggest that synaptic NMDARs can mediate excitotoxicity, particularly when the glutamate source is synaptic and when synaptic receptor contributions are rigorously defined. Moreover, the results suggest that in some situations therapeutically targeting extrasynaptic receptors may be inappropriate. PMID:22573696

  11. Phosphorylation of AMPA receptors is required for sensory deprivation-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Goel, Anubhuti; Xu, Linda W; Snyder, Kevin P; Song, Lihua; Goenaga-Vazquez, Yamila; Megill, Andrea; Takamiya, Kogo; Huganir, Richard L; Lee, Hey-Kyoung

    2011-03-31

    Sensory experience, and the lack thereof, can alter the function of excitatory synapses in the primary sensory cortices. Recent evidence suggests that changes in sensory experience can regulate the synaptic level of Ca(2+)-permeable AMPA receptors (CP-AMPARs). However, the molecular mechanisms underlying such a process have not been determined. We found that binocular visual deprivation, which is a well-established in vivo model to produce multiplicative synaptic scaling in visual cortex of juvenile rodents, is accompanied by an increase in the phosphorylation of AMPAR GluR1 (or GluA1) subunit at the serine 845 (S845) site and the appearance of CP-AMPARs at synapses. To address the role of GluR1-S845 in visual deprivation-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity, we used mice lacking key phosphorylation sites on the GluR1 subunit. We found that mice specifically lacking the GluR1-S845 site (GluR1-S845A mutants), which is a substrate of cAMP-dependent kinase (PKA), show abnormal basal excitatory synaptic transmission and lack visual deprivation-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity. We also found evidence that increasing GluR1-S845 phosphorylation alone is not sufficient to produce normal multiplicative synaptic scaling. Our study provides concrete evidence that a GluR1 dependent mechanism, especially S845 phosphorylation, is a necessary pre-requisite step for in vivo homeostatic synaptic plasticity.

  12. Modulation of Synaptic Plasticity by Exercise Training as a Basis for Ischemic Stroke Rehabilitation.

    PubMed

    Nie, Jingjing; Yang, Xiaosu

    2017-01-01

    In recent years, rehabilitation of ischemic stroke draws more and more attention in the world, and has been linked to changes of synaptic plasticity. Exercise training improves motor function of ischemia as well as cognition which is associated with formation of learning and memory. The molecular basis of learning and memory might be synaptic plasticity. Research has therefore been conducted in an attempt to relate effects of exercise training to neuroprotection and neurogenesis adjacent to the ischemic injury brain. The present paper reviews the current literature addressing this question and discusses the possible mechanisms involved in modulation of synaptic plasticity by exercise training. This review shows the pathological process of synaptic dysfunction in ischemic roughly and then discusses the effects of exercise training on scaffold proteins and regulatory protein expression. The expression of scaffold proteins generally increased after training, but the effects on regulatory proteins were mixed. Moreover, the compositions of postsynaptic receptors were changed and the strength of synaptic transmission was enhanced after training. Finally, the recovery of cognition is critically associated with synaptic remodeling in an injured brain, and the remodeling occurs through a number of local regulations including mRNA translation, remodeling of cytoskeleton, and receptor trafficking into and out of the synapse. We do provide a comprehensive knowledge of synaptic plasticity enhancement obtained by exercise training in this review.

  13. Cholesterol Asymmetry in Synaptic Plasma Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Wood, W. Gibson; Igbavboa, Urule; Müller, Walter E.; Eckert, Gunter P.

    2010-01-01

    Lipids are essential for the structural and functional integrity of membranes. Membrane lipids are not randomly distributed but are localized in different domains. A common characteristic of these membrane domains is their association with cholesterol. Lipid rafts and caveolae are examples of cholesterol enriched domains, which have attracted keen interest. However, two other important cholesterol domains are the exofacial and cytofacial leaflets of the plasma membrane. The two leaflets that make up the bilayer differ in their fluidity, electrical charge, lipid distribution, and active sites of certain proteins. The synaptic plasma membrane (SPM) cytofacial leaflet contains over 85% of the total SPM cholesterol as compared with the exofacial leaflet. This asymmetric distribution of cholesterol is not fixed or immobile but can be modified by different conditions in vivo: 1) chronic ethanol consumption; 2) statins; 3) aging; and 4) apoE isoform. Several potential candidates have been proposed as mechanisms involved in regulation of SPM cholesterol asymmetry: apoE, low-density-lipoprotein receptor, sterol carrier protein-2, fatty acid binding proteins, polyunsaturated fatty acids, p-glycoprotein and caveolin-1. This review examines cholesterol asymmetry in SPM, potential mechanisms of regulation and impact on membrane structure and function. PMID:21214553

  14. Synaptic Control of Motoneuronal Excitability

    PubMed Central

    Rekling, Jens C.; Funk, Gregory D.; Bayliss, Douglas A.; Dong, Xiao-Wei; Feldman, Jack L.

    2016-01-01

    Movement, the fundamental component of behavior and the principal extrinsic action of the brain, is produced when skeletal muscles contract and relax in response to patterns of action potentials generated by motoneurons. The processes that determine the firing behavior of motoneurons are therefore important in understanding the transformation of neural activity to motor behavior. Here, we review recent studies on the control of motoneuronal excitability, focusing on synaptic and cellular properties. We first present a background description of motoneurons: their development, anatomical organization, and membrane properties, both passive and active. We then describe the general anatomical organization of synaptic input to motoneurons, followed by a description of the major transmitter systems that affect motoneuronal excitability, including ligands, receptor distribution, pre- and postsynaptic actions, signal transduction, and functional role. Glutamate is the main excitatory, and GABA and glycine are the main inhibitory transmitters acting through ionotropic receptors. These amino acids signal the principal motor commands from peripheral, spinal, and supraspinal structures. Amines, such as serotonin and norepinephrine, and neuropeptides, as well as the glutamate and GABA acting at metabotropic receptors, modulate motoneuronal excitability through pre- and postsynaptic actions. Acting principally via second messenger systems, their actions converge on common effectors, e.g., leak K+ current, cationic inward current, hyperpolarization-activated inward current, Ca2+ channels, or presynaptic release processes. Together, these numerous inputs mediate and modify incoming motor commands, ultimately generating the coordinated firing patterns that underlie muscle contractions during motor behavior. PMID:10747207

  15. Differential Regulation of IgG Anti-Capsular Polysaccharide and Antiprotein Responses to Intact Streptococcus pneumoniae in the Presence of Cognate CD4+ T Cell Help

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2004-01-01

    polysaccharide (PPS14), the phosphorylcholine determinant of the cell wall C-polysaccharide, and the cell wall protein, pneumococcal surface protein A...a more rapid delivery of CD4 T cell help. In contrast, the IgG anti- phosphorylcholine response, although also dependent on CD4 T cells, is TCR...and/or IgG isotypes specific for the phosphorylcholine (PC) determinant of the cell wall C-polysaccharide (teichoic acid) and for the cell wall

  16. Increasing Student Engagement, Self-Efficacy, and Meta-Cognitive Self-Regulation in the High School Geometry Classroom: Do iPads Help?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perry, David R.; Steck, Andy K.

    2015-01-01

    Teachers are increasingly integrating mobile digital technology into the classroom. The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of incorporating iPads in a secondary-level geometry course on academic achievement, student engagement, self-efficacy, and meta-cognitive self-regulation. Students in the iPad-using classroom experienced lower…

  17. New approach to capture and characterize synaptic proteome

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xin-An; Kadakkuzha, Beena; Pascal, Bruce; Steckler, Caitlin; Akhmedov, Komolitdin; Yan, Long; Chalmers, Michael; Puthanveettil, Sathyanarayanan V.

    2014-01-01

    Little is known regarding the identity of the population of proteins that are transported and localized to synapses. Here we describe a new approach that involves the isolation and systematic proteomic characterization of molecular motor kinesins to identify the populations of proteins transported to synapses. We used this approach to identify and compare proteins transported to synapses by kinesin (Kif) complexes Kif5C and Kif3A in the mouse hippocampus and prefrontal cortex. Approximately 40–50% of the protein cargos identified in our proteomics analysis of kinesin complexes are known synaptic proteins. We also found that the identity of kinesins and where they are expressed determine what proteins they transport. Our results reveal a previously unappreciated role of kinesins in regulating the composition of synaptic proteome. PMID:25352669

  18. Does autophagy work in synaptic plasticity and memory?

    PubMed

    Shehata, Mohammad; Inokuchi, Kaoru

    2014-01-01

    Many studies have reported the roles played by regulated proteolysis in neural plasticity and memory. Within this context, most of the research focused on the ubiquitin-proteasome system and the endosome-lysosome system while giving lesser consideration to another major protein degradation system, namely, autophagy. Although autophagy intersects with many of the pathways known to underlie synaptic plasticity and memory, only few reports related autophagy to synaptic remodeling. These pathways include PI3K-mTOR pathway and endosome-dependent proteolysis. In this review, we will discuss several lines of evidence supporting a physiological role of autophagy in memory processes, and the possible mechanistic scenarios for how autophagy could fulfill this function.

  19. Neural ECM molecules in synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory.

    PubMed

    Senkov, Oleg; Andjus, Pavle; Radenovic, Lidija; Soriano, Eduardo; Dityatev, Alexander

    2014-01-01

    Neural extracellular matrix (ECM) molecules derived from neurons and glial cells accumulate in the extracellular space and regulate synaptic plasticity through modulation of perisomal GABAergic inhibition, intrinsic neuronal excitability, integrin signaling, and activities of L-type Ca(2+) channels, NMDA receptors, and Rho-associated kinase. Genetic or enzymatic targeting of ECM molecules proved to bidirectionally modulate acquisition of memories, depending on experimental conditions, and to promote cognitive flexibility and extinction of fear and drug memories. Furthermore, evidence is accumulating that dysregulation of ECM is linked to major psychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases and that targeting ECM molecules may rescue cognitive deficits in animal models of these diseases. Thus, the ECM emerged as a key component of synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory and as an attractive target for developing new generation of synapse plasticizing drugs.

  20. SRC Inhibition Reduces NR2B Surface Expression and Synaptic Plasticity in the Amygdala

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sinai, Laleh; Duffy, Steven; Roder, John C.

    2010-01-01

    The Src protein tyrosine kinase plays a central role in the regulation of N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) activity by regulating NMDAR subunit 2B (NR2B) surface expression. In the amygdala, NMDA-dependent synaptic plasticity resulting from convergent somatosensory and auditory inputs contributes to emotional memory; however, the role of Src…

  1. Liprin-α2 promotes the presynaptic recruitment and turnover of RIM1/CASK to facilitate synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Spangler, Samantha A; Schmitz, Sabine K; Kevenaar, Josta T; de Graaff, Esther; de Wit, Heidi; Demmers, Jeroen; Toonen, Ruud F; Hoogenraad, Casper C

    2013-06-10

    The presynaptic active zone mediates synaptic vesicle exocytosis, and modulation of its molecular composition is important for many types of synaptic plasticity. Here, we identify synaptic scaffold protein liprin-α2 as a key organizer in this process. We show that liprin-α2 levels were regulated by synaptic activity and the ubiquitin-proteasome system. Furthermore, liprin-α2 organized presynaptic ultrastructure and controlled synaptic output by regulating synaptic vesicle pool size. The presence of liprin-α2 at presynaptic sites did not depend on other active zone scaffolding proteins but was critical for recruitment of several components of the release machinery, including RIM1 and CASK. Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching showed that depletion of liprin-α2 resulted in reduced turnover of RIM1 and CASK at presynaptic terminals, suggesting that liprin-α2 promotes dynamic scaffolding for molecular complexes that facilitate synaptic vesicle release. Therefore, liprin-α2 plays an important role in maintaining active zone dynamics to modulate synaptic efficacy in response to changes in network activity.

  2. Liprin-α2 promotes the presynaptic recruitment and turnover of RIM1/CASK to facilitate synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Spangler, Samantha A.; Schmitz, Sabine K.; Kevenaar, Josta T.; de Graaff, Esther; de Wit, Heidi; Demmers, Jeroen

    2013-01-01

    The presynaptic active zone mediates synaptic vesicle exocytosis, and modulation of its molecular composition is important for many types of synaptic plasticity. Here, we identify synaptic scaffold protein liprin-α2 as a key organizer in this process. We show that liprin-α2 levels were regulated by synaptic activity and the ubiquitin–proteasome system. Furthermore, liprin-α2 organized presynaptic ultrastructure and controlled synaptic output by regulating synaptic vesicle pool size. The presence of liprin-α2 at presynaptic sites did not depend on other active zone scaffolding proteins but was critical for recruitment of several components of the release machinery, including RIM1 and CASK. Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching showed that depletion of liprin-α2 resulted in reduced turnover of RIM1 and CASK at presynaptic terminals, suggesting that liprin-α2 promotes dynamic scaffolding for molecular complexes that facilitate synaptic vesicle release. Therefore, liprin-α2 plays an important role in maintaining active zone dynamics to modulate synaptic efficacy in response to changes in network activity. PMID:23751498

  3. Molecular Machines Determining the Fate of Endocytosed Synaptic Vesicles in Nerve Terminals

    PubMed Central

    Fassio, Anna; Fadda, Manuela; Benfenati, Fabio

    2016-01-01

    The cycle of a synaptic vesicle (SV) within the nerve terminal is a step-by-step journey with the final goal of ensuring the proper synaptic strength under changing environmental conditions. The SV cycle is a precisely regulated membrane traffic event in cells and, because of this, a plethora of membrane-bound and cytosolic proteins are devoted to assist SVs in each step of the journey. The cycling fate of endocytosed SVs determines both the availability for subsequent rounds of release and the lifetime of SVs in the terminal and is therefore crucial for synaptic function and plasticity. Molecular players that determine the destiny of SVs in nerve terminals after a round of exo-endocytosis are largely unknown. Here we review the functional role in SV fate of phosphorylation/dephosphorylation of SV proteins and of small GTPases acting on membrane trafficking at the synapse, as they are emerging as key molecules in determining the recycling route of SVs within the nerve terminal. In particular, we focus on: (i) the cyclin-dependent kinase-5 (cdk5) and calcineurin (CN) control of the recycling pool of SVs; (ii) the role of small GTPases of the Rab and ADP-ribosylation factor (Arf) families in defining the route followed by SV in their nerve terminal cycle. These regulatory proteins together with their synaptic regulators and effectors, are molecular nanomachines mediating homeostatic responses in synaptic plasticity and potential targets of drugs modulating the efficiency of synaptic transmission. PMID:27242505

  4. Thalamic synaptic transmission of sensory information modulated by synergistic interaction of adenosine and serotonin.

    PubMed

    Yang, Ya-Chin; Hu, Chun-Chang; Huang, Chen-Syuan; Chou, Pei-Yu

    2014-03-01

    The thalamic synapses relay peripheral sensory information to the cortex, and constitute an important part of the thalamocortical network that generates oscillatory activities responsible for different vigilance (sleep and wakefulness) states. However, the modulation of thalamic synaptic transmission by potential sleep regulators, especially by combination of regulators in physiological scenarios, is not fully characterized. We found that somnogen adenosine itself acts similar to wake-promoting serotonin, both decreasing synaptic strength as well as short-term depression, at the retinothalamic synapse. We then combined the two modulators considering the coexistence of them in the hypnagogic (sleep-onset) state. Adenosine plus serotonin results in robust synergistic inhibition of synaptic strength and dramatic transformation of short-term synaptic depression to facilitation. These synaptic effects are not achievable with a single modulator, and are consistent with a high signal-to-noise ratio but a low level of signal transmission through the thalamus appropriate for slow-wave sleep. This study for the first time demonstrates that the sleep-regulatory modulators may work differently when present in combination than present singly in terms of shaping information flow in the thalamocortical network. The major synaptic characters such as the strength and short-term plasticity can be profoundly altered by combination of modulators based on physiological considerations.

  5. Pre- and postsynaptic twists in BDNF secretion and action in synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Edelmann, Elke; Lessmann, Volkmar; Brigadski, Tanja

    2014-01-01

    Overwhelming evidence collected since the early 1990's strongly supports the notion that BDNF is among the key regulators of synaptic plasticity in many areas of the mammalian central nervous system. Still, due to the extremely low expression levels of endogenous BDNF in most brain areas, surprisingly little data i) pinpointing pre- and postsynaptic release sites, ii) unraveling the time course of release, and iii) elucidating the physiological levels of synaptic activity driving this secretion are available. Likewise, our knowledge regarding pre- and postsynaptic effects of endogenous BDNF at the single cell level in mediating long-term potentiation still is sparse. Thus, our review will discuss the data currently available regarding synaptic BDNF secretion in response to physiologically relevant levels of activity, and will discuss how endogenously secreted BDNF affects synaptic plasticity, giving a special focus on spike timing-dependent types of LTP and on mossy fiber LTP. We will attempt to open up perspectives how the remaining challenging questions regarding synaptic BDNF release and action might be addressed by future experiments. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'BDNF Regulation of Synaptic Structure, Function, and Plasticity'.

  6. Unique Lipid Chemistry of Synaptic Vesicle and Synaptosome Membrane Revealed Using Mass Spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Kenneth T; Maddipati, Krishna R; Naik, Akshata R; Jena, Bhanu P

    2017-03-02

    Synaptic vesicles measuring 30-50 nm in diameter containing neurotransmitters either completely collapse at the presynaptic membrane or dock and transiently fuse at the base of specialized 15 nm cup-shaped lipoprotein structures called porosomes at the presynaptic membrane of synaptosomes to release neurotransmitters. Recent study reports the unique composition of major lipids associated with neuronal porosomes. Given that lipids greatly influence the association and functions of membrane proteins, differences in lipid composition of synaptic vesicle and the synaptosome membrane was hypothesized. To test this hypothesis, the lipidome of isolated synaptosome, synaptosome membrane, and synaptic vesicle preparation were determined by using mass spectrometry in the current study. Results from the study demonstrate the enriched presence of triacyl glycerols and sphingomyelins in synaptic vesicles, as opposed to the enriched presence of phospholipids in the synaptosome membrane fraction, reflecting on the tight regulation of nerve cells in compartmentalization of membrane lipids at the nerve terminal.

  7. TARP modulation of synaptic AMPA receptor trafficking and gating depends on multiple intracellular domains.

    PubMed

    Milstein, Aaron D; Nicoll, Roger A

    2009-07-07

    Previous work has established stargazin and its related family of transmembrane AMPA receptor regulatory proteins (TARPs) as auxiliary subunits of AMPA receptors (AMPARs) that control synaptic strength both by targeting AMPARs to synapses through an intracellular PDZ-binding motif and by modulating their gating through an extracellular domain. However, TARPs gamma-2 and gamma-8 differentially regulate the synaptic targeting of AMPARs, despite having identical PDZ-binding motifs. Here, we investigate the structural elements that contribute to this functional difference between TARP subtypes by using domain transplantation and truncation. We identify a component of synaptic AMPAR trafficking that is independent of the TARP C-terminal PDZ-binding motif, and we establish previously uncharacterized roles for the TARP intracellular N terminus, loop, and C terminus in modulating both the trafficking and gating of synaptic AMPARs.

  8. Elevated serotonergic signaling amplifies synaptic noise and facilitates the emergence of epileptiform network oscillations

    PubMed Central

    Puzerey, Pavel A.; Decker, Michael J.

    2014-01-01

    Serotonin fibers densely innervate the cortical sheath to regulate neuronal excitability, but its role in shaping network dynamics remains undetermined. We show that serotonin provides an excitatory tone to cortical neurons in the form of spontaneous synaptic noise through 5-HT3 receptors, which is persistent and can be augmented using fluoxetine, a selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitor. Augmented serotonin signaling also increases cortical network activity by enhancing synaptic excitation through activation of 5-HT2 receptors. This in turn facilitates the emergence of epileptiform network oscillations (10–16 Hz) known as fast runs. A computational model of cortical dynamics demonstrates that these two combined mechanisms, increased background synaptic noise and enhanced synaptic excitation, are sufficient to replicate the emergence fast runs and their statistics. Consistent with these findings, we show that blocking 5-HT2 receptors in vivo significantly raises the threshold for convulsant-induced seizures. PMID:25122717

  9. Synaptic Transmission Correlates of General Mental Ability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McRorie, Margaret; Cooper, Colin

    2004-01-01

    Nerve conduction velocity (NCV) and efficiency of synaptic transmission are two possible biological mechanisms that may underpin intelligence. Direct assessments of NCV, without synaptic transmission, show few substantial or reliable correlations with cognitive abilities ["Intelligence" 16 (1992) 273]. We therefore assessed the latencies…

  10. Drosophila-Cdh1 (Rap/Fzr) a regulatory subunit of APC/C is required for synaptic morphology, synaptic transmission and locomotion.

    PubMed

    Wise, Alexandria; Schatoff, Emma; Flores, Julian; Hua, Shao-Ying; Ueda, Atsushi; Wu, Chun-Fang; Venkatesh, Tadmiri

    2013-11-01

    The assembly of functional synapses requires the orchestration of the synthesis and degradation of a multitude of proteins. Protein degradation and modification by the conserved ubiquitination pathway has emerged as a key cellular regulatory mechanism during nervous system development and function (Kwabe and Brose, 2011). The anaphase promoting complex/cyclosome (APC/C) is a multi-subunit ubiquitin ligase complex primarily characterized for its role in the regulation of mitosis (Peters, 2002). In recent years, a role for APC/C in nervous system development and function has been rapidly emerging (Stegmuller and Bonni, 2005; Li et al., 2008). In the mammalian central nervous system the activator subunit, APC/C-Cdh1, has been shown to be a regulator of axon growth and dendrite morphogenesis (Konishi et al., 2004). In the Drosophila peripheral nervous system (PNS), APC2, a ligase subunit of the APC/C complex has been shown to regulate synaptic bouton size and activity (van Roessel et al., 2004). To investigate the role of APC/C-Cdh1 at the synapse we examined loss-of-function mutants of Rap/Fzr (Retina aberrant in pattern/Fizzy related), a Drosophila homolog of the mammalian Cdh1 during the development of the larval neuromuscular junction in Drosophila. Our cell biological, ultrastructural, electrophysiological, and behavioral data showed that rap/fzr loss-of-function mutations lead to changes in synaptic structure and function as well as locomotion defects. Data presented here show changes in size and morphology of synaptic boutons, and, muscle tissue organization. Electrophysiological experiments show that loss-of-function mutants exhibit increased frequency of spontaneous miniature synaptic potentials, indicating a higher rate of spontaneous synaptic vesicle fusion events. In addition, larval locomotion and peristaltic movement were also impaired. These findings suggest a role for Drosophila APC/C-Cdh1 mediated ubiquitination in regulating synaptic morphology

  11. Programmable synaptic chip for electronic neural networks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moopenn, A.; Langenbacher, H.; Thakoor, A. P.; Khanna, S. K.

    1988-01-01

    A binary synaptic matrix chip has been developed for electronic neural networks. The matrix chip contains a programmable 32X32 array of 'long channel' NMOSFET binary connection elements implemented in a 3-micron bulk CMOS process. Since the neurons are kept off-chip, the synaptic chip serves as a 'cascadable' building block for a multi-chip synaptic network as large as 512X512 in size. As an alternative to the programmable NMOSFET (long channel) connection elements, tailored thin film resistors are deposited, in series with FET switches, on some CMOS test chips, to obtain the weak synaptic connections. Although deposition and patterning of the resistors require additional processing steps, they promise substantial savings in silicon area. The performance of synaptic chip in a 32-neuron breadboard system in an associative memory test application is discussed.

  12. Valproic acid mediates the synaptic excitatory/inhibitory balance through astrocytes--a preliminary study.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chao-Chuan; Chen, Po See; Hsu, Chien-Wen; Wu, Shou-Jung; Lin, Chieh-Ting; Gean, Po Wu

    2012-04-27

    Valproic acid (VPA) is one of the most widely used anticonvulsant and mood-stabilizing agents for the treatment of epilepsy and bipolar disorder. However, the underlying therapeutic mechanisms of the treatment of each disease remain unclear. Recently, the anti-epileptic effect of VPA has been found to lead to modulation of the synaptic excitatory/inhibitory balance. In addition, the therapeutic action of VPA has been linked to its effect on astrocytes by regulating gene expression at the molecular level, perhaps through an epigenetic mechanism as a histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor. To provide insight into the mechanisms underlying the actions of VPA, this study investigated whether the synaptic excitatory/inhibitory (E/I) balance could be mediated by VPA through astrocytes. First, using the primary rat neuronal, astroglial, and neuro-glial mixed culture systems, we demonstrated that VPA treatment could regulate the mRNA levels of two post-synaptic cell adhesion molecules(neuroligin-1 and neuregulin-1) and two extracellular matrices (neuronal pentraxin-1and thrombospondin-3) in primary rat astrocyte cultures in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. Moreover, the up-regulation effect of VPA was noted in astrocytes, but not in neurons. In addition, these regulatory effects could be mimicked by sodium butyrate, a HDAC inhibitor, but not by lithium or two other glycogen synthase kinase-3 beta inhibitors. With the known role of these four proteins in regulating the synaptic E/I balance, we further demonstrated that VPA increased excitatory post-synaptic protein (postsynaptic density 95) and inhibitory post-synaptic protein (Gephyrin) in cortical neuro-glial mixed cultures. Our results suggested that VPA might affect the synaptic excitatory/inhibitory balance through its effect on astrocytes. This work provides the basis for future evaluation of the role of astroglial cell adhesion molecules and the extracellular matrix on the control of excitatory and

  13. Plain packaging and indirect expropriation of trademark rights under BITs: does FCTC help to establish a right to regulate tobacco products?

    PubMed

    Lo, Chang-Fa

    2012-12-01

    Recently the giant tobacco company Philip Morris served its notice to launch an investor-to-state dispute settlement proceeding against the Australian Government for its introduction of plain packaging requirements on tobacco products. It is an important event in the field of intellectual property, investment and international health law. The fundamental questions involved are whether the restriction of trademark rights as a result of the plain packaging requirement is a compensable indirect expropriation under BITs or whether it falls within the scope of government's right to regulate and thus become not compensable. This paper is of the view that the requirement of plain packaging will deprive the essential value or core function of trademark rights and thus constitutes an indirect expropriation under BITs. However, such indirect expropriation meets the public interest requirement and the necessity requirement. The paper further argues that sovereign States have an inherent right to regulate domestic economic activities. Since the pain packaging requirements provided in the FCTC Guidelines are expected to protect the value of human lives and health, the protected values clearly outweigh the affected commercial interests of tobacco companies. Also the justification for host States to adopt a plain packaging policy is strong. Thus, the interpreters of BITs need to pay higher respect to the host State's sovereign power concerning its right to regulate tobacco products for a legitimate purpose. The conclusion of the paper is that the host States should enjoy a defense of the right to regulate to refuse compensation. The author believes that this is the only reasonable conclusion to avoid possible conflicts between different treaty systems (BITs and the FCTC) and between different legal systems and fields (trademark law, investment law and international health law).

  14. Graded hedgehog and fibroblast growth factor signaling independently regulate pituitary cell fates and help establish the pars distalis and pars intermedia of the zebrafish adenohypophysis.

    PubMed

    Guner, Burcu; Ozacar, A Tuba; Thomas, Jeanne E; Karlstrom, Rolf O

    2008-09-01

    The vertebrate adenohypophysis forms as a placode at the anterior margin of the neural plate, requiring both hedgehog (Hh) and fibroblast growth factor (Fgf) mediated cell-cell signaling for induction and survival of endocrine cell types. Using small molecule inhibitors to modulate signaling levels during zebrafish development we show that graded Hh and Fgf signaling independently help establish the two subdomains of the adenohypophysis, the anteriorly located pars distalis (PD) and the posterior pars intermedia (PI). High levels of Hh signaling are required for formation of the PD and differentiation of anterior endocrine cell types, whereas lower levels of Hh signaling are required for formation of the PI and differentiation of posterior endocrine cell types. In contrast, high Fgf signaling levels are required for formation of the PI and posterior endocrine cell differentiation, whereas anterior regions require lower levels of Fgf signaling. Based on live observations and marker analyses, we show that the PD forms first at the midline closest to the central nervous system source of Sonic hedgehog. In contrast the PI appears to form from more lateral/posterior cells close to a central nervous system source of Fgf3. Together our data show that graded Hh and Fgf signaling independently direct induction of the PD and PI and help establish endocrine cell fates along the anterior/posterior axis of the zebrafish adenohypophysis. These data suggest that there are distinct origins and signaling requirements for the PD and PI.

  15. GABA and neuroligin signaling: linking synaptic activity and adhesion in inhibitory synapse development

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Z. Josh; Scheiffele, Peter

    2013-01-01

    GABA-mediated synaptic inhibition is crucial in neural circuit operations. In mammalian brains, the development of inhibitory synapses and innervation patterns is often a prolonged postnatal process, regulated by neural activity. Emerging evidence indicates that GABA acts beyond inhibitory transmission and regulates inhibitory synapse development. Indeed, GABAA receptors not only function as chloride channels that regulate membrane voltage and conductance but also play structural roles in synapse maturation and stabilization. The link from GABAA receptors to post- and pre- synaptic adhesion is likely mediated, in part, by neuroligin-reurexin interactions, which are potent in promoting GABAergic synapse formation. Therefore, similar to glutamate signaling at excitatory synapse, GABA signaling may coordinate maturation of pre- and post- synaptic sites at inhibitory synapses. Defining the many steps from GABA signaling to receptor trafficking/stability and neuroligin function will provide further mechanistic insights into activity-dependent development and possibly plasticity of inhibitory synapses. PMID:18513949

  16. Hemifusion in Synaptic Vesicle Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Kweon, Dae-Hyuk; Kong, Byoungjae; Shin, Yeon-Kyun

    2017-01-01

    In the neuron, early neurotransmitters are released through the fusion pore prior to the complete vesicle fusion. It has been thought that the fusion pore is a gap junction-like structure made of transmembrane domains (TMDs) of soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive-factor attachment protein receptor (SNARE) proteins. However, evidence has accumulated that lipid mixing occurs prior to the neurotransmitter release through the fusion pore lined predominantly with lipids. To explain these observations, the hemifusion, a membrane structure in which two bilayers are partially merged, has emerged as a key step preceding the formation of the fusion pore. Furthermore, the hemifusion appears to be the bona fide intermediate step not only for the synaptic vesicle cycle, but for a wide range of membrane remodeling processes, such as viral membrane fusion and endocytotic membrane fission. PMID:28360835

  17. Parent Tookit: Homework Help. Helpful Tips.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    All Kinds of Minds, 2006

    2006-01-01

    This check list contains tips for parents to help students reinforce and build upon what children learn at school: (1) Set a consistent time each day for doing homework; (2) Encourage children to make a homework checklist; (3) Provide assistance to help get started on a task; (4) Help children make a list of all needed materials before starting…

  18. Nonconserved Ca2+/Calmodulin Binding Sites in Munc13s Differentially Control Synaptic Short-Term Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Lipstein, Noa; Schaks, Sabine; Dimova, Kalina; Kalkhof, Stefan; Ihling, Christian; Kölbel, Knut; Ashery, Uri; Rhee, JeongSeop; Brose, Nils

    2012-01-01

    Munc13s are presynaptic proteins that mediate synaptic vesicle priming and thereby control the size of the readily releasable pool of vesicles. During high synaptic activity, Munc13-1 and its closely related homolog, ubMunc13-2, bind Ca2+/calmodulin, resulting in enhanced priming activity and in changes of short-term synaptic plasticity characteristics. Here, we studied whether bMunc13-2 and Munc13-3, two remote isoforms of Munc13-1 with a neuronal subtype-specific expression pattern, mediate synaptic vesicle priming and regulate short-term synaptic plasticity in a Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent manner. We identified a single functional Ca2+/calmodulin binding site in these isoforms and provide structural evidence that all Munc13s employ a common mode of interaction with calmodulin despite the lack of sequence homology between their Ca2+/calmodulin binding sites. Electrophysiological analysis showed that, during high-frequency activity, Ca2+/calmodulin binding positively regulates the priming activity of bMunc13-2 and Munc13-3, resulting in an increase in the size of the readily releasable pool of vesicles and subsequently in strong short-term synaptic enhancement of neurotransmission. We conclude that Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent regulation of priming activity is structurally and functionally conserved in all Munc13 proteins, and that the composition of Munc13 isoforms in a neuron differentially controls its short-term synaptic plasticity characteristics. PMID:22966208

  19. Drosophila Syncrip modulates the expression of mRNAs encoding key synaptic proteins required for morphology at the neuromuscular junction.

    PubMed

    McDermott, Suzanne M; Yang, Lu; Halstead, James M; Hamilton, Russell S; Meignin, Carine; Davis, Ilan

    2014-10-01

    Localized mRNA translation is thought to play a key role in synaptic plasticity, but the identity of the transcripts and the molecular mechanism underlying their function are still poorly understood. Here, we show that Syncrip, a regulator of localized translation in the Drosophila oocyte and a component of mammalian neuronal mRNA granules, is also expressed in the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction, where it regulates synaptic growth. We use RNA-immunoprecipitation followed by high-throughput sequencing and qRT-PCR to show that Syncrip associates with a number of mRNAs encoding proteins with key synaptic functions, including msp-300, syd-1, neurexin-1, futsch, highwire, discs large, and α-spectrin. The protein levels of MSP-300, Discs large, and a number of others are significantly affected in syncrip null mutants. Furthermore, syncrip mutants show a reduction in MSP-300 protein levels and defects in muscle nuclear distribution characteristic of msp-300 mutants. Our results highlight a number of potential new players in localized translation during synaptic plasticity in the neuromuscular junction. We propose that Syncrip acts as a modulator of synaptic plasticity by regulating the translation of these key mRNAs encoding synaptic scaffolding proteins and other important components involved in synaptic growth and function.

  20. Spike-Timing Dependent Plasticity Beyond Synapse – Pre- and Post-Synaptic Plasticity of Intrinsic Neuronal Excitability

    PubMed Central

    Debanne, Dominique; Poo, Mu-Ming

    2010-01-01

    Long-lasting plasticity of synaptic transmission is classically thought to be the cellular substrate for information storage in the brain. Recent data indicate however that it is not the whole story and persistent changes in the intrinsic neuronal excitability have been shown to occur in parallel to the induction of long-term synaptic modifications. This form of plasticity depends on the regulation of voltage-gated ion channels. Here we review the experimental evidence for plasticity of neuronal excitability induced at pre- or postsynaptic sites when long-term plasticity of synaptic transmission is induced with Spike-Timing Dependent Plasticity (STDP) protocols. We describe the induction and expression mechanisms of the induced changes in excitability. Finally, the functional synergy between synaptic and non-synaptic plasticity and their spatial extent are discussed. PMID:21423507

  1. Histone deacetylase 2 cell autonomously suppresses excitatory and enhances inhibitory synaptic function in CA1 pyramidal neurons.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Jesse E; Deng, Lunbin; Hackos, David H; Lo, Shih-Ching; Lauffer, Benjamin E; Steiner, Pascal; Zhou, Qiang

    2013-04-03

    Histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2) negatively regulates excitatory synapse number and memory performance. However, whether HDAC2 regulation of excitatory synapses occurs in a cell-autonomous manner and whether HDAC2 regulates inhibitory synaptic functions are not well understood. To examine these aspects of HDAC2 function, we used sparse transfection of rat hippocampal slice cultures and whole-cell recordings in pyramidal neurons. HDAC2 knockdown (KD) in single postsynaptic pyramidal neurons enhanced, whereas HDAC2 overexpression (OE) reduced, excitatory synaptic transmission. Postsynaptic KD of HDAC2 also facilitated expression of long-term potentiation induced by subthreshold induction stimuli, without altering long-term depression. In contrast, HDAC2 KD reduced, whereas HDAC2 OE enhanced, inhibitory synaptic transmission. Alterations of postsynaptic GABA(A) receptors (GABA(A)Rs) likely underlie the impact of HDAC2 on inhibitory transmission. Consistent with this, we observed reduced transcript and protein levels of the GABA(A)R γ2 subunit and reduced surface expression of the α2 subunit after HDAC2 KD. Furthermore, we observed a reduction in synaptic but not tonic GABA(A)R currents by HDAC2 KD, suggesting that HDAC2 selectively affects synaptic abundance of functional GABA(A)Rs. Immunostaining for postsynaptic GABA(A)Rs confirmed that HDAC2 KD and OE can regulate the synaptic abundance of these receptors. Together, these results highlight a role for HDAC2 in suppressing synaptic excitation and enhancing synaptic inhibition of hippocampal neurons. Therefore, a shift in the balance of synaptic excitation versus inhibition favoring excitation could contribute to the beneficial effects of reducing HDAC2 function in wild-type mice or of inhibiting HDACs in models of cognitive impairment.

  2. Synaptic Control of Secretory Trafficking in Dendrites

    PubMed Central

    Hanus, Cyril; Kochen, Lisa; Dieck, Susanne tom; Racine, Victor; Sibarita, Jean-Baptiste; Schuman, Erin M.; Ehlers, Michael D.

    2016-01-01

    Summary Localized signaling in neuronal dendrites requires tight spatial control of membrane composition. Upon initial synthesis, nascent secretory cargo in dendrites exits the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) from local zones of ER complexity that are spatially coupled to post-ER compartments. Although newly synthesized membrane proteins can be processed locally, the mechanisms that control the spatial range of secretory cargo transport in dendritic segments are unknown. Here, we monitored the dynamics of nascent membrane proteins in dendritic post-ER compartments under regimes of low or increased neuronal activity. In response to activity blockade, post-ER carriers are highly mobile and are transported over long distances. Conversely, increasing synaptic activity dramatically restricts the spatial scale of post-ER trafficking along dendrites. This activity-induced confinement of secretory cargo requires site-specific phosphorylation of the kinesin motor KIF17 by Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinases (CaMK). Thus, the length scales of early secretory trafficking in dendrites are tuned by activity-dependent regulation of microtubule-dependent transport. PMID:24931613

  3. GABA Metabolism and Transport: Effects on Synaptic Efficacy

    PubMed Central

    Roth, Fabian C.; Draguhn, Andreas

    2012-01-01

    GABAergic inhibition is an important regulator of excitability in neuronal networks. In addition, inhibitory synaptic signals contribute crucially to the organization of spatiotemporal patterns of network activity, especially during coherent oscillations. In order to maintain stable network states, the release of GABA by interneurons must be plastic in timing and amount. This homeostatic regulation is achieved by several pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms and is triggered by various activity-dependent local signals such as excitatory input or ambient levels of neurotransmitters. Here, we review findings on the availability of GABA for release at presynaptic terminals of interneurons. Presynaptic GABA content seems to be an important determinant of inhibitory efficacy and can be differentially regulated by changing synthesis, transport, and degradation of GABA or related molecules. We will discuss the functional impact of such regulations on neuronal network patterns and, finally, point towards pharmacological approaches targeting these processes. PMID:22530158

  4. Selective molecular impairment of spontaneous neurotransmission modulates synaptic efficacy

    PubMed Central

    Crawford, Devon C.; Ramirez, Denise M. O.; Trauterman, Brent; Monteggia, Lisa M.; Kavalali, Ege T.

    2017-01-01

    Recent studies suggest that stimulus-evoked and spontaneous neurotransmitter release processes are mechanistically distinct. Here we targeted the non-canonical synaptic vesicle SNAREs Vps10p-tail-interactor-1a (vti1a) and vesicle-associated membrane protein 7 (VAMP7) to specifically inhibit spontaneous release events and probe whether these events signal independently of evoked release to the postsynaptic neuron. We found that loss of vti1a and VAMP7 impairs spontaneous high-frequency glutamate release and augments unitary event amplitudes by reducing postsynaptic eukaryotic elongation factor 2 kinase (eEF2K) activity subsequent to the reduction in N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) activity. Presynaptic, but not postsynaptic, loss of vti1a and VAMP7 occludes NMDAR antagonist-induced synaptic potentiation in an intact circuit, confirming the role of these vesicular SNAREs in setting synaptic strength. Collectively, these results demonstrate that spontaneous neurotransmission signals independently of stimulus-evoked release and highlight its role as a key regulator of postsynaptic efficacy. PMID:28186166

  5. Important roles of Vilse in dendritic architecture and synaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jin-Yu; Lee, Li-Jen; Fan, Chih-Chen; Chang, Ho-Ching; Shih, Hsin-An; Min, Ming-Yuan; Chang, Mau-Sun

    2017-01-01

    Vilse/Arhgap39 is a Rho GTPase activating protein (RhoGAP) and utilizes its WW domain to regulate Rac/Cdc42-dependent morphogenesis in Drosophila and murine hippocampal neurons. However, the function of Vilse in mammalian dendrite architecture and synaptic plasticity remained unclear. In the present study, we aimed to explore the possible role of Vilse in dendritic structure and synaptic function in the brain. Homozygous knockout of Vilse resulted in premature embryonic lethality in mice. Changes in dendritic complexity and spine density were noticed in hippocampal neurons of Camk2a-Cre mediated forebrain-specific Vilse knockout (VilseΔ/Δ) mice. VilseΔ/Δ mice displayed impaired spatial memory in water maze and Y-maze tests. Electrical stimulation in hippocampal CA1 region revealed that the synaptic transmission and plasticity were defected in VilseΔ/Δ mice. Collectively, our results demonstrate that Vilse is essential for embryonic development and required for spatial memory. PMID:28368047

  6. The Set1/COMPASS histone H3 methyltransferase helps regulate mitosis with the CDK1 and NIMA mitotic kinases in Aspergillus nidulans.

    PubMed

    Govindaraghavan, Meera; Anglin, Sarah Lea; Osmani, Aysha H; Osmani, Stephen A

    2014-08-01

    Mitosis is promoted and regulated by reversible protein phosphorylation catalyzed by the essential NIMA and CDK1 kinases in the model filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans. Protein methylation mediated by the Set1/COMPASS methyltransferase complex has also been shown to regulate mitosis in budding yeast with the Aurora mitotic kinase. We uncover a genetic interaction between An-swd1, which encodes a subunit of the Set1 protein methyltransferase complex, with NIMA as partial inactivation of nimA is poorly tolerated in the absence of swd1. This genetic interaction is additionally seen without the Set1 methyltransferase catalytic subunit. Importantly partial inactivation of NIMT, a mitotic activator of the CDK1 kinase, also causes lethality in the absence of Set1 function, revealing a functional relationship between the Set1 complex and two pivotal mitotic kinases. The main target for Set1-mediated methylation is histone H3K4. Mutational analysis of histone H3 revealed that modifying the H3K4 target residue of Set1 methyltransferase activity phenocopied the lethality seen when either NIMA or CDK1 are partially functional. We probed the mechanistic basis of these genetic interactions and find that the Set1 complex performs functions with CDK1 for initiating mitosis and with NIMA during progression through mitosis. The studies uncover a joint requirement for the Set1 methyltransferase complex with the CDK1 and NIMA kinases for successful mitosis. The findings extend the roles of the Set1 complex to include the initiation of mitosis with CDK1 and mitotic progression with NIMA in addition to its previously identified interactions with Aurora and type 1 phosphatase in budding yeast.

  7. Homeostatic control of synaptic activity by endogenous adenosine is mediated by adenosine kinase.

    PubMed

    Diógenes, Maria José; Neves-Tomé, Raquel; Fucile, Sergio; Martinello, Katiuscia; Scianni, Maria; Theofilas, Panos; Lopatár, Jan; Ribeiro, Joaquim A; Maggi, Laura; Frenguelli, Bruno G; Limatola, Cristina; Boison, Detlev; Sebastião, Ana M

    2014-01-01

    Extracellular adenosine, a key regulator of neuronal excitability, is metabolized by astrocyte-based enzyme adenosine kinase (ADK). We hypothesized that ADK might be an upstream regulator of adenosine-based homeostatic brain functions by simultaneously affecting several downstream pathways. We therefore studied the relationship between ADK expression, levels of extracellular adenosine, synaptic transmission, intrinsic excitability, and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF)-dependent synaptic actions in transgenic mice underexpressing or overexpressing ADK. We demonstrate that ADK: 1) Critically influences the basal tone of adenosine, evaluated by microelectrode adenosine biosensors, and its release following stimulation; 2) determines the degree of tonic adenosine-dependent synaptic inhibition, which correlates with differential plasticity at hippocampal synapses with low release probability; 3) modulates the age-dependent effects of BDNF on hippocampal synaptic transmission, an action dependent upon co-activation of adenosine A2A receptors; and 4) influences GABAA receptor-mediated currents in CA3 pyramidal neurons. We conclude that ADK provides important upstream regulation of adenosine-based homeostatic function of the brain and that this mechanism is necessary and permissive to synaptic actions of adenosine acting on multiple pathways. These mechanistic studies support previous therapeutic studies and implicate ADK as a promising therapeutic target for upstream control of multiple neuronal signaling pathways crucial for a variety of neurological disorders.

  8. Synaptic amplification by dendritic spines enhances input cooperativity

    PubMed Central

    Harnett, Mark T.; Makara, Judit K.; Spruston, Nelson; Kath, William L.; Magee, Jeffrey C.

    2012-01-01

    Dendritic spines are the nearly ubiquitous site of excitatory synaptic input onto neurons1–2 and as such are critically positioned to influence diverse aspects of neuronal signaling. Decades of theoretical studies have proposed that spines may function as highly effective and modifiable chemical and electrical compartments that regulate synaptic efficacy, integration, and plasticity3–8. Experimental studies have confirmed activity-dependent structural dynamics and biochemical compartmentalization by spines9–12. However, a longstanding debate remains over the influence of spines on the electrical aspects of synaptic transmission and dendritic operation3–8,13–18. Here, we measured the amplitude ratio (AR) of spine head to parent dendrite voltage across a range of dendritic compartments and calculated the associated Rneck for spines at apical trunk dendrites in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons. We found that Rneck is large enough (~500 MΩ) to substantially amplify the spine head depolarization associated with a unitary synaptic input by ~1.5- to ~45-fold depending on parent dendritic impedance. A morphologically realistic compartmental model capable of reproducing the observed spatial profile of AR indicates that spines provide a consistently high impedance input structure throughout the dendritic arbor. Finally, we demonstrate that the amplification produced by spines encourages electrical interaction among coactive inputs through an Rneck-dependent increase in spine head voltage- dependent conductance activation. We conclude that the electrical properties of spines promote nonlinear dendritic processing and associated forms of plasticity and storage, thus fundamentally enhancing the computational capabilities of neurons19–21. PMID:23103868

  9. A synaptic mechanism for retinal adaptation to luminance and contrast

    PubMed Central

    Jarsky, Tim; Cembrowski, Mark; Logan, Stephen M.; Kath, William L.; Riecke, Hermann; Demb, Jonathan B.; Singer, Joshua H.

    2011-01-01

    The gain of signaling in primary sensory circuits is matched to the stimulus intensity by the process of adaptation. Retinal neural circuits adapt to visual scene statistics, including the mean (background adaptation) and the temporal variance (contrast adaptation) of the light stimulus. The intrinsic properties of retinal bipolar cells and synapses contribute to background and contrast adaptation, but it is unclear whether both forms of adaptation depend on the same cellular mechanisms. Studies of bipolar cell synapses identified synaptic mechanisms of gain control, but the relevance of these mechanisms to visual processing is uncertain owing to the historical focus on fast, phasic transmission rather than the tonic transmission evoked by ambient light. Here, we studied use-dependent regulation of bipolar cell synaptic transmission evoked by small, ongoing modulations of membrane potential (VM) in the physiological range. We made paired whole-cell recordings from rod bipolar (RB) and AII amacrine cells in a mouse retinal slice preparation. Quasi-white noise voltage commands modulated RB VM and evoked EPSCs in the AII. We mimicked changes in background luminance or contrast, respectively, by depolarizing the VM or increasing its variance. A linear systems analysis of synaptic transmission showed that increasing either the mean or the variance of the presynaptic VM reduced gain. Further electrophysiological and computational analyses demonstrated that adaptation to mean potential resulted from both Ca channel inactivation and vesicle depletion, whereas adaptation to variance resulted from vesicle depletion alone. Thus, background and contrast adaptation apparently depend in part on a common synaptic mechanism. PMID:21795549

  10. β-Adrenergic Control of Hippocampal Function: Subserving the Choreography of Synaptic Information Storage and Memory.

    PubMed

    Hagena, Hardy; Hansen, Niels; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise

    2016-04-01

    Noradrenaline (NA) is a key neuromodulator for the regulation of behavioral state and cognition. It supports learning by increasing arousal and vigilance, whereby new experiences are "earmarked" for encoding. Within the hippocampus, experience-dependent information storage occurs by means of synaptic plasticity. Furthermore, novel spatial, contextual, or associative learning drives changes in synaptic strength, reflected by the strengthening of long-term potentiation (LTP) or long-term depression (LTD). NA acting on β-adrenergic receptors (β-AR) is a key determinant as to whether new experiences result in persistent hippocampal synaptic plasticity. This can even dictate the direction of change of synaptic strength.The different hippocampal subfields play different roles in encoding components of a spatial representation through LTP and LTD. Strikingly, the sensitivity of synaptic plasticity in these subfields to β-adrenergic control is very distinct (dentate gyrus > CA3 > CA1). Moreover, NA released from the locus coeruleus that acts on β-AR leads to hippocampal LTD and an enhancement of LTD-related memory processing. We propose that NA acting on hippocampal β-AR, that is graded according to the novelty or saliency of the experience, determines the content and persistency of synaptic information storage in the hippocampal subfields and therefore of spatial memories.

  11. Bidirectional synaptic plasticity and spatial memory flexibility require Ca2+-stimulated adenylyl cyclases.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ming; Storm, Daniel R; Wang, Hongbing

    2011-07-13

    When certain memory becomes obsolete, effective suppression of the previously established memory is essential for animals to adapt to the changing environment. At the cellular level, reversal of synaptic potentiation may be important for neurons to acquire new information and to prevent synaptic saturation. Here, we investigated the function of Ca(2+)-stimulated cAMP signaling in the regulation of bidirectional synaptic plasticity and spatial memory formation in double knock-out mice (DKO) lacking both type 1 and 8 adenylyl cyclases (ACs). In anesthetized animals, the DKO mutants showed defective long-term potentiation (LTP) after a single high-frequency stimulation (HFS) or two spaced HFSs at 100 Hz. However, DKO mice showed normal LTP after a single HFS at 200 Hz or two compressed HFSs at 100 Hz. Interestingly, reversal of synaptic potentiation as well as de novo synaptic depression was impaired in DKO mice. In the Morris water maze, DKO mice showed defective acquisition and memory retention, although the deficits could be attenuated by overtraining or compressed trainings with a shorter intertrial interval. In the reversal platform test, DKO animals were impaired in both relearning and old memory suppression. Furthermore, the extinction of the old spatial memory was not efficient in DKO mice. These data demonstrate that Ca(2+)-stimulated AC activity is important not only for LTP and spatial memory formation but also for the suppression of both previously established synaptic potentiation and old spatial memory.

  12. β-Adrenergic Control of Hippocampal Function: Subserving the Choreography of Synaptic Information Storage and Memory

    PubMed Central

    Hagena, Hardy; Hansen, Niels; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise

    2016-01-01

    Noradrenaline (NA) is a key neuromodulator for the regulation of behavioral state and cognition. It supports learning by increasing arousal and vigilance, whereby new experiences are “earmarked” for encoding. Within the hippocampus, experience-dependent information storage occurs by means of synaptic plasticity. Furthermore, novel spatial, contextual, or associative learning drives changes in synaptic strength, reflected by the strengthening of long-term potentiation (LTP) or long-term depression (LTD). NA acting on β-adrenergic receptors (β-AR) is a key determinant as to whether new experiences result in persistent hippocampal synaptic plasticity. This can even dictate the direction of change of synaptic strength. The different hippocampal subfields play different roles in encoding components of a spatial representation through LTP and LTD. Strikingly, the sensitivity of synaptic plasticity in these subfields to β-adrenergic control is very distinct (dentate gyrus > CA3 > CA1). Moreover, NA released from the locus coeruleus that acts on β-AR leads to hippocampal LTD and an enhancement of LTD-related memory processing. We propose that NA acting on hippocampal β-AR, that is graded according to the novelty or saliency of the experience, determines the content and persistency of synaptic information storage in the hippocampal subfields and therefore of spatial memories. PMID:26804338

  13. Aquaporin-4 water channels and synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Scharfman, Helen E; Binder, Devin K

    2013-12-01

    Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) is the major water channel expressed in the central nervous system (CNS) and is primarily expressed in glial cells. Many studies have shown that AQP4 regulates the response of the CNS to insults or injury, but far less is known about the potential for AQP4 to influence synaptic plasticity or behavior. Recent studies have examined long-term potentiation (LTP), long-term depression (LTD), and behavior in AQP4 knockout (KO) and wild-type mice to gain more insight into its potential role. The results showed a selective effect of AQP4 deletion on LTP of the Schaffer collateral pathway in hippocampus using an LTP induction protocol that simulates pyramidal cell firing during theta oscillations (theta-burst stimulation; TBS). However, LTP produced by a different induction protocol was unaffected. There was also a defect in LTD after low frequency stimulation (LFS) in AQP4 KO mice. Interestingly, some slices from AQP4 KO mice exhibited LTD after TBS instead of LTP, or LTP following LFS instead of LTD. These data suggest that AQP4 and astrocytes influence the polarity of long-term synaptic plasticity (potentiation or depression). These potentially powerful roles expand the influence of AQP4 and astrocytes beyond the original suggestions related to regulation of extracellular potassium and water balance. Remarkably, AQP4 KO mice did not show deficits in basal transmission, suggesting specificity for long-term synaptic plasticity. The mechanism appears to be related to neurotrophins and specifically brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) because pharmacological blockade of neurotrophin trk receptors or scavenging ligands such as BDNF restored plasticity. The in vitro studies predicted effects in vivo of AQP4 deletion because AQP4 KO mice performed worse using a task that requires memory for the location of objects (object placement). However, performance on other hippocampal-dependent tasks was spared. The results suggest an unanticipated and selective

  14. Nuclear respiratory factor 2 regulates the expression of the same NMDA receptor subunit genes as NRF-1: both factors act by a concurrent and parallel mechanism to couple energy metabolism and synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Priya, Anusha; Johar, Kaid; Wong-Riley, Margaret T T

    2013-01-01

    Neuronal activity and energy metabolism are tightly coupled processes. Previously, we found that nuclear respiratory factor 1 (NRF-1) transcriptionally co-regulates energy metabolism and neuronal activity by regulating all 13 subunits of the critical energy generating enzyme, cytochrome c oxidase (COX), as well as N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor subunits 1 and 2B, GluN1 (Grin1) and GluN2B (Grin2b). We also found that another transcription factor, nuclear respiratory factor 2 (NRF-2 or GA-binding protein) regulates all subunits of COX as well. The goal of the present study was to test our hypothesis that NRF-2 also regulates specific subunits of NMDA receptors, and that it functions with NRF-1 via one of three mechanisms: complementary, concurrent and parallel, or a combination of complementary and concurrent/parallel. By means of multiple approaches, including in silico analysis, electrophoretic mobility shift and supershift assays, in vivo chromatin immunoprecipitation of mouse neuroblastoma cells and rat visual cortical tissue, promoter mutations, real-time quantitative PCR, and western blot analysis, NRF-2 was found to functionally regulate Grin1 and Grin2b genes, but not any other NMDA subunit genes. Grin1 and Grin2b transcripts were up-regulated by depolarizing KCl, but silencing of NRF-2 prevented this up-regulation. On the other hand, over-expression of NRF-2 rescued the down-regulation of these subunits by the impulse blocker TTX. NRF-2 binding sites on Grin1 and Grin2b are conserved among species. Our data indicate that NRF-2 and NRF-1 operate in a concurrent and parallel manner in mediating the tight coupling between energy metabolism and neuronal activity at the molecular level.

  15. Phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (Pck1) helps regulate the triglyceride/fatty acid cycle and development of insulin resistance in mice[S

    PubMed Central

    Millward, Carrie A.; DeSantis, David; Hsieh, Chang-Wen; Heaney, Jason D.; Pisano, Sorana; Olswang, Yael; Reshef, Lea; Beidelschies, Michelle; Puchowicz, Michelle; Croniger, Colleen M.

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the role of the cytosolic form of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (Pck1) in the development of insulin resistance. Previous studies have shown that the roles of Pck1 in white adipose tissue (WAT) in glyceroneogenesis and reesterification of free fatty acids (FFA) to generate triglyceride are vital for the prevention of diabetes. We hypothesized that insulin resistance develops when dysregulation of Pck1 occurs in the triglyceride/fatty acid cycle, which regulates lipid synthesis and transport between adipose tissue and the liver. We examined this by analyzing mice with a deletion of the PPARγ binding site in the promoter of Pck1 (PPARE−/−). This mutation reduced the fasting Pck1 mRNA expression in WAT in brown adipose tissue (BAT). To analyze insulin resistance, we performed hyperinsulinemic-euglycemic glucose clamp analyses. PPARE−/− mice were profoundly insulin resistant and had more FFA and glycerol released during the hyperinsulinemic-euglycemic clamp compared with wild-type mice (WT). Finally, we analyzed insulin secretion in isolated islets. We found a 2-fold increase in insulin secretion in the PPARE−/− mice at 16.7 mM glucose. Thus, the PPARE site in the Pck1 promoter is essential for maintenance of lipid metabolism and glucose homeostasis and disease prevention. PMID:20124556

  16. An Engineered Metal Sensor Tunes the Kinetics of Synaptic Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Chantell S.; Ruhl, David A.

    2015-01-01

    The Ca2+ sensor synaptotagmin-1 (syt-1) regulates neurotransmitter release by interacting with anionic phospholipids. Here we test the idea that the intrinsic kinetics of syt–membrane interactions determine, in part, the time course of synaptic transmission. To tune the kinetics of this interaction, we grafted structural elements from the slowest isoform, syt-7, onto the fastest isoform, syt-1, resulting in a chimera with intermediate kinetic properties. Moreover, the chimera coupled a physiologically irrelevant metal, Sr2+, to membrane fusion in vitro. When substituted for syt-1 in mouse hippocampal neurons, the chimera slowed the kinetics of synaptic transmission. Neurons expressing the chimera also evinced rapid and efficient Sr2+ triggered release, in contrast to the weak response of neurons expressing syt-1. These findings reveal presynaptic sensor–membrane interactions as a major factor regulating the speed of the release machinery. Finally, the chimera failed to clamp the elevated spontaneous fusion rate exhibited by syt-1 KO neurons, indicating that the metal binding loops of syt-1 regulate the two modes of release by distinct mechanisms. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT In calcium, synaptotagmin-1 triggers neurotransmitter release by interacting with membranes. Here, we demonstrate that intrinsic properties of this interaction control the time course of synaptic transmission. We engineered a “chimera” using synaptotagmin-1 and elements of a slower isoform, synaptotagmin-7. When expressed in neurons, the chimera slowed the rate of neurotransmitter release. Furthermore, unlike native synaptotagmin-1, the chimera was able to function robustly in the presence of strontium–a metal not present in cells. We exploited this ability to show that a key function of synaptotagmin-1 is to penetrate cell membranes. This work sheds light on fundamental mechanisms of neurotransmitter release. PMID:26311762

  17. Stargazin (TARP gamma-2) is required for compartment-specific AMPA receptor trafficking and synaptic plasticity in cerebellar stellate cells.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Alexander C; Nicoll, Roger A

    2011-03-16

    In the cerebellar cortex, parallel fiber-to-stellate cell (PF-SC) synapses exhibit a form of synaptic plasticity manifested as a switch in the subunit composition of synaptic AMPA receptors (AMPARs) from calcium-permeable, GluA2-lacking to calcium-impermeable, GluA2-containing receptors. Here, we examine the role of stargazin (γ-2), canonical member of the transmembrane AMPAR regulatory protein (TARP) family, in the regulation of GluA2-lacking AMPARs and synaptic plasticity in SCs from epileptic and ataxic stargazer mutant mice. We found that AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission is severely diminished in stargazer SCs, and that the rectification index (RI) of AMPAR current is reduced. Activity-dependent plasticity in the rectification of synaptic AMPARs is also impaired in stargazer SCs. Despite the dramatic loss in synaptic AMPARs, extrasynaptic AMPARs are preserved. We then examined the role of stargazin in regulating the rectification of extrasynaptic AMPARs in nucleated patches and found, in contrast to previous reports, that wild-type extrasynaptic AMPARs have moderate RI values (average RI = 0.38), while those in stargazer SCs are low (average RI = 0.24). The GluA2-lacking AMPAR blocker, philanthotoxin-433 (PhTx-433), was used as an alternative measure of GluA2 content in wild-type and stargazer SCs. Despite the difference in RI, PhTx-433 sensitivity of both synaptic and extrasynaptic AMPARs remains unchanged, suggesting that the dramatic changes in RI and the impairment in synaptic plasticity observed in the stargazer mouse are not the result of a specific impairment in GluA2 trafficking. Together, these data suggest that stargazin regulates compartment-specific AMPAR trafficking, as well as activity-dependent plasticity in synaptic AMPAR rectification at cerebellar PF-SC synapses.

  18. Help Seeking and Receiving.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nadler, Arie

    Although social psychology has always had an interest in helping behavior, only recently has the full complexity of helping relations begun to be researched. Help seeking and receiving in the educational setting raise many issues regarding the use and effectiveness of the help itself. Central to all helping relations is the seeking/receiving…

  19. Reelin Regulates the Maturation of Dendritic Spines, Synaptogenesis and Glial Ensheathment of Newborn Granule Cells.

    PubMed

    Bosch, Carles; Masachs, Nuria; Exposito-Alonso, David; Martínez, Albert; Teixeira, Cátia M; Fernaud, Isabel; Pujadas, Lluís; Ulloa, Fausto; Comella, Joan X; DeFelipe, Javier; Merchán-Pérez, Angel; Soriano, Eduardo

    2016-09-13

    The Reelin pathway is essential for both neural migration and for the development and maturation of synaptic connections. However, its role in adult synaptic formation and remodeling is still being investigated. Here, we investigated the impact of the Reelin/Dab1 pathway on the synaptogenesis of newborn granule cells (GCs) in the young-adult mouse hippocampus. We show that neither Reelin overexpression nor the inactivation of its intracellular adapter, Dab1, substantially alters dendritic spine numbers in these neurons. In contrast, 3D-electron microscopy (focused ion beam milling/scanning electron microscope) revealed that dysregulation of the Reelin/Dab1 pathway leads to both transient and permanent changes in the types and morphology of dendritic spines, mainly altering mushroom, filopodial, and branched GC spines. We also found that the Reelin/Dab1 pathway controls synaptic configuration of presynaptic boutons in the dentate gyrus, with its dysregulation leading to a substantial decrease in multi-synaptic bouton innervation. Lastly, we show that the Reelin/Dab1 pathway controls astroglial ensheathment of synapses. Thus, the Reelin pathway is a key regulator of adult-generated GC integration, by controlling dendritic spine types and shapes, their synaptic innervation patterns, and glial ensheathment. These findings may help to better understanding of hippocampal circuit alterations in neurological disorders in which the Reelin pathway is implicated.

  20. AMPA receptor inhibition by synaptically released zinc

    PubMed Central

    Kalappa, Bopanna I.; Anderson, Charles T.; Lippard, Stephen J.; Tzounopoulos, Thanos

    2015-01-01

    The vast amount of fast excitatory neurotransmission in the mammalian central nervous system is mediated by AMPA-subtype glutamate receptors (AMPARs). As a result, AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission is implicated in nearly all aspects of brain development, function, and plasticity. Despite the central role of AMPARs in neurobiology, the fine-tuning of synaptic AMPA responses by endogenous modulators remains poorly understood. Here we provide evidence that endogenous zinc, released by single presynaptic action potentials, inhibits synaptic AMPA currents in the dorsal cochlear nucleus (DCN) and hippocampus. Exposure to loud sound reduces presynaptic zinc levels in the DCN and abolishes zinc inhibition, implicating zinc in experience-dependent AMPAR synaptic plasticity. Our results establish zinc as an activity-dependent, endogenous modulator of AMPARs that tunes fast excitatory neurotransmission and plasticity in glutamatergic synapses. PMID:26647187

  1. Programmable synaptic devices for electronic neural nets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moopenn, A.; Thakoor, A. P.

    1990-01-01

    The architecture, design, and operational characteristics of custom VLSI and thin film synaptic devices are described. The devices include CMOS-based synaptic chips containing 1024 reprogrammable synapses with a 6-bit dynamic range, and nonvolatile, write-once, binary synaptic arrays based on memory switching in hydrogenated amorphous silicon films. Their suitability for embodiment of fully parallel and analog neural hardware is discussed. Specifically, a neural network solution to an assignment problem of combinatorial global optimization, implemented in fully parallel hardware using the synaptic chips, is described. The network's ability to provide optimal and near optimal solutions over a time scale of few neuron time constants has been demonstrated and suggests a speedup improvement of several orders of magnitude over conventional search methods.

  2. Autoregulatory and paracrine control of synaptic and behavioral plasticity by octopaminergic signaling.

    PubMed

    Koon, Alex C; Ashley, James; Barria, Romina; DasGupta, Shamik; Brain, Ruth; Waddell, Scott; Alkema, Mark J; Budnik, Vivian

    2011-02-01

    Adrenergic signaling has important roles in synaptic plasticity and metaplasticity. However, the underlying mechanisms of these functions remain poorly understood. We investigated the role of octopamine, the invertebrate counterpart of adrenaline and noradrenaline, in synaptic and behavioral plasticity in Drosophila. We found that an increase in locomotor speed induced by food deprivation was accompanied by an activity- and octopamine-dependent extension of octopaminergic arbors and that the formation and maintenance of these arbors required electrical activity. Growth of octopaminergic arbors was controlled by a cAMP- and CREB-dependent positive-feedback mechanism that required Octβ2R octopamine autoreceptors. Notably, this autoregulation was necessary for the locomotor response. In addition, octopamine neurons regulated the expansion of excitatory glutamatergic neuromuscular arbors through Octβ2Rs on glutamatergic motor neurons. Our results provide a mechanism for global regulation of excitatory synapses, presumably to maintain synaptic and behavioral plasticity in a dynamic range.

  3. Quantitative proteomics of synaptic and nonsynaptic mitochondria: insights for synaptic mitochondrial vulnerability.

    PubMed

    Stauch, Kelly L; Purnell, Phillip R; Fox, Howard S

    2014-05-02

    Synaptic mitochondria are essential for maintaining calcium homeostasis and producing ATP, processes vital for neuronal integrity and synaptic transmission. Synaptic mitochondria exhibit increased oxidative damage during aging and are more vulnerable to calcium insult than nonsynaptic mitochondria. Why synaptic mitochondria are specifically more susceptible to cumulative damage remains to be determined. In this study, the generation of a super-SILAC mix that served as an appropriate internal standard for mouse brain mitochondria mass spectrometry based analysis allowed for the quantification of the proteomic differences between synaptic and nonsynaptic mitochondria isolated from 10-month-old mice. We identified a total of 2260 common proteins between synaptic and nonsynaptic mitochondria of which 1629 were annotated as mitochondrial. Quantitative proteomic analysis of the proteins common between synaptic and nonsynaptic mitochondria revealed significant differential expression of 522 proteins involved in several pathways including oxidative phosphorylation, mitochondrial fission/fusion, calcium transport, and mitochondrial DNA replication and maintenance. In comparison to nonsynaptic mitochondria, synaptic mitochondria exhibited increased age-associated mitochondrial DNA deletions and decreased bioenergetic function. These findings provide insights into synaptic mitochondrial susceptibility to damage.

  4. Ras and Rap signaling in synaptic plasticity and mental disorders.

    PubMed

    Stornetta, Ruth L; Zhu, J Julius

    2011-02-01

    The Ras family GTPases (Ras, Rap1, and Rap2) and their downstream mitogen-activated protein kinases (ERK, JNK, and p38MAPK) and PI3K signaling cascades control various physiological processes. In neuronal cells, recent studies have shown that these parallel cascades signal distinct forms of AMPA-sensitive glutamate receptor trafficking during experience-dependent synaptic plasticity and adaptive behavior. Interestingly, both hypo- and hyperactivation of Ras/ Rap signaling impair the capacity of synaptic plasticity, underscoring the importance of a "happy-medium" dynamic regulation of the signaling. Moreover, accumulating reports have linked various genetic defects that either up- or down-regulate Ras/Rap signaling with several mental disorders associated with learning disability (e.g., Alzheimer's disease, Angelman syndrome, autism, cardio-facio-cutaneous syndrome, Coffin-Lowry syndrome, Costello syndrome, Cowden and Bannayan-Riley-Ruvalcaba syndromes, fragile X syndrome, neurofibromatosis type 1, Noonan syndrome, schizophrenia, tuberous sclerosis, and X-linked mental retardation), highlighting the necessity of happy-medium dynamic regulation of Ras/Rap signaling in learning behavior. Thus, the recent advances in understanding of neuronal Ras/Rap signaling provide a useful guide for developing novel treatments for mental diseases.

  5. Synaptic Function of Rab11Fip5: Selective Requirement for Hippocampal Long-Term Depression

    PubMed Central

    Ahmad, Mohiuddin; Jurado, Sandra; Malenka, Robert C.

    2015-01-01

    Postsynaptic AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs) are among the major determinants of synaptic strength and can be trafficked into and out of synapses. Neuronal activity regulates AMPAR trafficking during synaptic plasticity to induce long-term changes in synaptic strength, including long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). Rab family GTPases regulate most membrane trafficking in eukaryotic cells; particularly, Rab11 and its effectors are implicated in mediating postsynaptic AMPAR insertion during LTP. To explore the synaptic function of Rab11Fip5, a neuronal Rab11 effector and a candidate autism-spectrum disorder gene, we performed shRNA-mediated knock-down and genetic knock-out (KO) studies. Surprisingly, we observed robust shRNA-induced synaptic phenotypes that were rescued by a Rab11Fip5 cDNA but that were nevertheless not observed in conditional KO neurons. Both in cultured neurons and acute slices, KO of Rab11Fip5 had no significant effect on basic parameters of synaptic transmission, indicating that Rab11Fip5 is not required for fundamental synaptic operations, such as neurotransmitter release or postsynaptic AMPAR insertion. KO of Rab11Fip5 did, however, abolish hippocampal LTD as measured both in acute slices or using a chemical LTD protocol in cultured neurons but did not affect hippocampal LTP. The Rab11Fip5 KO mice performed normally in several behavioral tasks, including fear conditioning, but showed enhanced contextual fear extinction. These are the first findings to suggest a requirement for Rab11Fip5, and presumably Rab11, during LTD. PMID:25972173

  6. GABAAR-dependent synaptic transmission sculpts dendritic arbor structure in Xenopus tadpoles in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Wanhua; Da Silva, Jorge Santos; He, Haiyan; Cline, Hollis T.

    2009-01-01

    The emergence of dendritic arbor structure in vivo depends on synaptic inputs. We tested whether inhibitory GABAergic synaptic transmission regulates Xenopus optic tectal cell dendritic arbor development in vivo by expressing a peptide corresponding to an intracellular loop (ICL) of the γ2 subunit of GABAAR which is required to anchor GABAA receptors to the postsynaptic scaffold. GFP-tagged ICL (EGFP-ICL) was distributed in a punctate pattern at putative inhibitory synapses, identified by VGAT-immunoreactive puncta. ICL expression completely blocked GABAAR - mediated transmission in 36% of transfected neurons and significantly reduced GABAAR - mediated synaptic currents relative to AMPAR-mediated synaptic currents in the remaining transfected neurons without altering release probability or neuronal excitability. Further analysis of ICL-expressing neurons with residual GABAAR- mediated inputs showed that the capacity of benzodiazepine to enhance GABAergic synaptic responses was reduced in ICL-expressing neurons, indicating that they were likely depleted of γ2 subunit-containing GABAAR. Neurons expressing a mutant form of ICL were comparable to controls. In vivo time-lapse images showed that ICL-expressing neurons have more sparsely branched dendritic arbors which expand over larger neuropil areas than EGFP-expressing control neurons. Analysis of branch dynamics indicated that ICL expression affected arbor growth by reducing rates of branch addition. Furthermore, we found that decreasing GABAergic synaptic transmission with ICL expression blocked visual experience dependent dendritic arbor structural plasticity. Our findings establish an essential role for inhibitory GABAergic synaptic transmission in the regulation of dendritic structural plasticity in Xenopus in vivo. PMID:19369572

  7. Helping Parents Help Their Children Toward Literacy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nichols, G. Jeane

    A practicum was designed to help parents of kindergartners in a low income area help their children develop literacy. The primary goal was to secure the active involvement of parents in their children's learning experiences. Other goals included improving kindergarten teachers' communication skills and expanding their strategies for reaching out…

  8. High Resolution Quantitative Synaptic Proteome Profiling of Mouse Brain Regions After Auditory Discrimination Learning

    PubMed Central

    Kolodziej, Angela; Smalla, Karl-Heinz; Richter, Sandra; Engler, Alexander; Pielot, Rainer; Dieterich, Daniela C.; Tischmeyer, Wolfgang; Naumann, Michael; Kähne, Thilo

    2016-01-01

    The molecular synaptic mechanisms underlying auditory learning and memory remain largely unknown. Here, the workflow of a proteomic study on auditory discrimination learning in mice is described. In this learning paradigm, mice are trained in a shuttle box Go/NoGo-task to discriminate between rising and falling frequency-modulated tones in order to avoid a mild electric foot-shock. The protocol involves the enrichment of synaptosomes from four brain areas, namely the auditory cortex, frontal cortex, hippocampus, and striatum, at different stages of training. Synaptic protein expression patterns obtained from trained mice are compared to naïve controls using a proteomic approach. To achieve sufficient analytical depth, samples are fractionated in three different ways prior to mass spectrometry, namely 1D SDS-PAGE/in-gel digestion, in-solution digestion and phospho-peptide enrichment. High-resolution proteomic analysis on a mass spectrometer and label-free quantification are used to examine synaptic protein profiles in phospho-peptide-depleted and phospho-peptide-enriched fractions of synaptosomal protein samples. A commercial software package is utilized to reveal proteins and phospho-peptides with significantly regulated relative synaptic abundance levels (trained/naïve controls). Common and differential regulation modes for the synaptic proteome in the investigated brain regions of mice after training were observed. Subsequently, meta-analyses utilizing several databases are employed to identify underlying cellular functions and biological pathways. PMID:28060347

  9. TARP γ-7 selectively enhances synaptic expression of calcium-permeable AMPARs.

    PubMed

    Studniarczyk, Dorota; Coombs, Ian; Cull-Candy, Stuart G; Farrant, Mark

    2013-09-01

    Regulation of calcium-permeable AMPA receptors (CP-AMPARs) is crucial in normal synaptic function and neurological disease states. Although transmembrane AMPAR regulatory proteins (TARPs) such as stargazin (γ-2) modulate the properties of calcium-impermeable AMPARs (CI-AMPARs) and promote their synaptic targeting, the TARP-specific rules governing CP-AMPAR synaptic trafficking remain unclear. We used RNA interference to manipulate AMPAR-subunit and TARP expression in γ-2-lacking stargazer cerebellar granule cells--the classic model of TARP deficiency. We found that TARP γ-7 selectively enhanced the synaptic expression of CP-AMPARs and suppressed CI-AMPARs, identifying a pivotal role of γ-7 in regulating the prevalence of CP-AMPARs. In the absence of associated TARPs, both CP-AMPARs and CI-AMPARs were able to localize to synapses and mediate transmission, although their properties were altered. Our results also establish that TARPed synaptic receptors in granule cells require both γ-2 and γ-7 and reveal an unexpected basis for the loss of AMPAR-mediated transmission in stargazer mice.

  10. High Resolution Quantitative Synaptic Proteome Profiling of Mouse Brain Regions After Auditory Discrimination Learning.

    PubMed

    Kolodziej, Angela; Smalla, Karl-Heinz; Richter, Sandra; Engler, Alexander; Pielot, Rainer; Dieterich, Daniela C; Tischmeyer, Wolfgang; Naumann, Michael; Kähne, Thilo

    2016-12-15

    The molecular synapti