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Sample records for neuronal nicotinic receptors

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

    PubMed

    Davis, Tiffany J; de Fiebre, Christopher M

    2006-01-01

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

  2. Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors and Epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Bertrand, Daniel

    2002-01-01

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

  3. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are modulated by zinc.

    PubMed

    Vázquez-Gómez, Elizabeth; García-Colunga, Jesús

    2009-01-01

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

  4. Progesterone Modulates a Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1992-10-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Shih, Pei-Yu; McIntosh, J. Michael

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-12-15

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

  7. A choreography of nicotinic receptors directs the dopamine neuron routine.

    PubMed

    Ungless, Mark A; Cragg, Stephanie J

    2006-06-15

    Modulation of the mesocorticolimbic dopamine system by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) is thought to play an important role in both health and addiction. However, a clear understanding of how these receptors regulate in vivo firing activity has been elusive. In this issue of Neuron, Mameli-Engvall and colleagues report an impressive and thought-provoking series of in vivo experiments combining single-unit recordings from dopamine neurons with nAChR subunit deletions and region-specific lentiviral subunit re-expression.

  8. Nicotine is highly effective at producing desensitization of rat α4β2 neuronal nicotinic receptors

    PubMed Central

    Paradiso, K G; Steinbach, Joe Henry

    2003-01-01

    We examined desensitization by acetylcholine (ACh) and nicotine at the rat α4β2 neuronal nicotinic receptor stably expressed in HEK cells. For both agonists, the decay in response due to desensitization (‘onset’) was best fitted by the sum of two exponentials with the fast component dominant at concentrations > 1 μm. The time constants for onset were similar for both agonists, and showed little concentration dependence over the range of 0.1–100 μm. Recovery from desensitization also showed two exponential components. In contrast to the similarity in onset, nicotine produced longer lasting desensitization, resulting from an increase in the proportion of receptors in the slowly recovering population and from an increase in the time constant for the slow recovery process. The proportion of receptors in the slowly recovering population increased as the duration of the desensitizing pulse increased. Desensitization was also induced by low concentrations of agonist, with no apparent macroscopic response. A 100 s application of 10 nm nicotine desensitized 70 % of the peak response, while 100 s of 10 nm ACh desensitized only 15 %. At higher concentrations of agonist, which result in a macroscopic response, desensitization in the absence of activation also can occur. Nicotine is a very potent and efficacious desensitizing agent at this neuronal nicotinic receptor. PMID:14555718

  9. Optochemical control of genetically engineered neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-02-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2007-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2000-10-01

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

  14. Nicotine enhances the cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase-mediated phosphorylation of alpha4 subunits of neuronal nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Y N; Edwards, S C; Wecker, L

    1997-12-01

    Studies determined whether alpha4beta2 or alpha3beta2 neuronal nicotinic receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes are substrates for cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) and whether nicotine affects receptor phosphorylation. The cRNAs for the subunits were coinjected into oocytes, and cells were incubated for 24 h in the absence or presence of nicotine (50 nM for alpha4beta2 and 500 nM for alpha3beta2 receptors). Nicotine did not interfere with the isolation of the receptors. When receptors isolated from oocytes expressing alpha4beta2 receptors were incubated with [gamma-32P]ATP and the catalytic subunit of PKA, separated by electrophoresis, and visualized by autoradiography, a labeled phosphoprotein with the predicted molecular size of the alpha4 subunit was present. Phosphorylation of alpha4 subunits of alpha4beta2 receptors increased within the first 5 min of incubation with nicotine and persisted for 24 h. In contrast, receptors isolated from oocytes expressing alpha3beta2 receptors did not exhibit a labeled phosphoprotein corresponding to the size of the alpha3 subunit. Results suggest that the PKA-mediated phosphorylation of alpha4 and not alpha3 subunits may explain the differential inactivation by nicotine of these receptor subtypes expressed in oocytes.

  15. Nicotinic receptor-mediated biphasic effect on neuronal excitability in chick lateral spiriform neurons.

    PubMed

    Liu, Y-B; Guo, J-Z; Chiappinelli, V A

    2007-09-21

    Local neuronal circuits integrate synaptic information with different excitatory or inhibitory time windows. Here we report that activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) leads to biphasic effects on excitability in chick lateral spiriform (SPL) neurons during whole cell recordings in brain slices. Carbachol (100 microM in the presence of 1 microM atropine) produced an initial short-term increase in the firing rates of SPL neurons (125+/-14% of control) that was mediated by postsynaptic nAChRs. However, after 3 min exposure to nicotinic agonists, the firing rate measured during an 800 ms depolarizing pulse declined to 19+/-7% (100 microM carbachol) or 26+/-8% (10 microM nicotine) of the control rate and remained decreased for 10-20 min after washout of the agonists. Similarly, after 60 s of electrically-stimulated release of endogenous acetylcholine (ACh) from cholinergic afferent fibers, there was a marked reduction (45+/-5% of control) in firing rates in SPL neurons. All of these effects were blocked by the nAChR antagonist dihydro-beta-erythroidine (30 microM). The inhibitory effect was not observed in Ca(2+)-free buffer. The nAChR-mediated inhibition depended on active G-proteins in SPL neurons and was prevented by the GABA(B) receptor antagonist phaclofen (200 microM), while the GABA(B) receptor agonist baclofen (10 microM) decreased firing rate in SPL neurons to 13+/-1% of control. The inhibitory response thus appears to be due to a nAChR-mediated enhancement of presynaptic GABA release, which then activates postsynaptic GABA(B) receptors. In conclusion, activation of nAChRs in the SPL initiates a limited time window for an excitatory period, after which a prolonged inhibitory effect turns off this window. The prolonged inhibitory effect may serve to protect SPL neurons from excessive excitation.

  16. Effect of dextrometorphan and dextrorphan on nicotine and neuronal nicotinic receptors: in vitro and in vivo selectivity.

    PubMed

    Damaj, M I; Flood, P; Ho, K K; May, E L; Martin, B R

    2005-02-01

    The effects of dextrometorphan and its metabolite dextrorphan on nicotine-induced antinociception in two acute thermal pain assays after systematic administration were evaluated in mice and compared with that of mecamylamine. Dextrometorphan and dextrorphan were found to block nicotine's antinociception in the tail-flick and hot-plate tests with different potencies (dextrometorphan is 10 times more potent than its metabolite). This blockade was not due to antagonism of N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors and/or interaction with opiate receptors, since selective drugs of these receptors failed to block nicotine's analgesic effects. Our results with the tail-flick and hot-plate tests showed an interesting in vivo functional selectivity for dextrometorphan over dextrorphan. In oocytes expressing various neuronal acetylcholine nicotinic receptors (nAChR), dextrometorphan and dextrorphan blocked nicotine activation of expressed alpha(3)beta(4), alpha(4)beta(2), and alpha(7) subtypes with a small degree of selectivity. However, the in vivo antagonistic potency of dextrometorphan and dextrorphan in the pain tests does not correlate well with their in vitro blockade potency at expressed nAChR subtypes. Furthermore, the apparent in vivo selectivity of dextrometorphan over dextrorphan is not related to its in vitro potency and does suggest the involvement of other mechanisms. In that respect, dextrometorphan seems to behave as another mecamylamine, a noncompetitive nicotinic receptor antagonist with a preferential activity to alpha(3)beta(4)(*) neuronal nAChR subtypes.

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

    PubMed

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

    1997-08-01

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

  18. Neuronal nicotinic receptor ligands modulate chronic nicotine-induced ethanol consumption in C57BL/6J mice.

    PubMed

    Sajja, Ravi K; Rahman, Shafiqur

    2012-07-01

    Alcohol and nicotine are commonly abused drugs in humans and evidence suggests that neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the midbrain dopamine system are common targets for the neurobehavioral interactions between alcohol (ethanol) and nicotine. The present study examined the efficacy of nAChR ligands with different pharmacological profiles such as cytisine, lobeline and dihydro-β-erythroidine (DHβE) to modulate chronic nicotine-induced increase in ethanol intake by C57BL/6J mice, using a two-bottle choice procedure. After establishment of baseline ethanol preference (10%, v/v), animals received daily subcutaneous injections of saline, nicotine (0.4 mg/kg) or different doses of cytisine, lobeline or DHβE 15 min prior to nicotine, for 10 days. Ethanol and water were presented immediately after the last (saline or nicotine) injection and fluid levels were monitored for post 1 h and 2 h treatment. Compared to control, nicotine injection significantly increased mean ethanol intake over 10 days, at both post 1 h and 2 h. Pretreatment with cytisine (0.5, 1.5 or 3.0 mg/kg) or lobeline (4.0 or 10.0 mg/kg) significantly reduced nicotine-induced increase in ethanol intake post 1 h and 2 h, without affecting water consumption. DHβE (0.5 or 2.0 mg/kg) failed to suppress nicotine-induced ethanol intake across 2 h post injection. These results indicate that nAChRmediated signaling is critical in regulating nicotine-induced ethanol drinking behaviors.

  19. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor activation modulates gamma-aminobutyric acid release from CA1 neurons of rat hippocampal slices.

    PubMed

    Alkondon, M; Pereira, E F; Barbosa, C T; Albuquerque, E X

    1997-12-01

    In the present study we investigated electrophysiologically the nicotinic responses of pyramidal neurons and interneurons visualized by infrared-assisted videomicroscopy and fluorescence in the CA1 field of hippocampal slices obtained from 8- to 24-day-old rats. Application of nicotinic agonists to CA1 neurons evoked at least four types of nicotinic responses. Of major interest was the ability of these agonists to induce the release of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) from interneurons. Slowly decaying ACh whole-cell currents and GABA-mediated postsynaptic currents could be recorded from pyramidal neurons and interneurons, whereas fast-decaying nicotinic currents and fast current transients were recorded only from interneurons. Nicotinic responses were sensitive to blockade by d-tubocurarine (10 microM), which indicated that they were mediated by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). The slowly decaying currents, the postsynaptic currents and the fast current transients were insensitive to blockade by the alpha-7 nAChR-specific antagonist methyllycaconitine (up to 1 microM) or alpha-bungarotoxin (100 nM). On the other hand, the slowly decaying nicotinic currents recorded from the interneurons were blocked by the alpha4beta2 nAChR-specific antagonist dihydro-beta-erythroidine, and the fast-desensitizing nicotinic currents were evoked by the alpha-7 nAChR-specific agonist choline. In experimental conditions similar to those used to record nicotinic responses from neurons in slice (i. e., in the absence of tetrodotoxin), we observed that nicotinic agonists can also induce the release of GABA from hippocampal neurons in culture. In summary, these results provide direct evidence for more than one subtype of functional nAChR in CA1 neurons and suggest that activation of nAChRs present in GABAergic interneurons can evoke inhibitory activity in CA1 pyramidal neurons, thereby modulating processing of information in the hippocampus.

  20. Human polymorphisms in nicotinic receptors: a functional analysis in iPS-derived dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Deflorio, Cristina; Blanchard, Stéphane; Carisì, Maria Carla; Bohl, Delphine; Maskos, Uwe

    2017-02-01

    Tobacco smoking is a public health problem, with ∼5 million deaths per year, representing a heavy burden for many countries. No effective therapeutic strategies are currently available for nicotine addiction, and it is therefore crucial to understand the etiological and pathophysiological factors contributing to this addiction. The neuronal α5 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit is critically involved in nicotine dependence. In particular, the human polymorphism α5D398N corresponds to the strongest correlation with nicotine dependence risk found to date in occidental populations, according to meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies. To understand the specific contribution of this subunit in the context of nicotine addiction, an efficient screening system for native human nAChRs is needed. We have differentiated human induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells into midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons and obtained a comprehensive characterization of these neurons by quantitative RT-PCR. The functional properties of nAChRs expressed in these human DA neurons, with or without the polymorphism in the α5 subunit, were studied with the patch-clamp electrophysiological technique. Our results in human DA neurons carrying the polymorphism in the α5 subunit showed an increase in EC50, indicating that, in the presence of the polymorphism, more nicotine or acetylcholine chloride is necessary to obtain the same effect. This human cell culturing system can now be used in drug discovery approaches to screen for compounds that interact specifically with human native and polymorphic nAChRs.-Deflorio, C., Blanchard, S., Carisì, M. C., Bohl, D., Maskos, U. Human polymorphisms in nicotinic receptors: a functional analysis in iPS-derived dopaminergic neurons.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    1992-01-01

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

  2. Nicotine-induced up-regulation and desensitization of alpha4beta2 neuronal nicotinic receptors depend on subunit ratio.

    PubMed

    López-Hernández, Gretchen Y; Sánchez-Padilla, Javier; Ortiz-Acevedo, Alejandro; Lizardi-Ortiz, José; Salas-Vincenty, Janice; Rojas, Legier V; Lasalde-Dominicci, José A

    2004-09-03

    Desensitization induced by chronic nicotine exposure has been hypothesized to trigger the up-regulation of the alpha4beta2 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) in the central nervous system. We studied the effect of acute and chronic nicotine exposure on the desensitization and up-regulation of different alpha4beta2 subunit ratios (1alpha:4beta, 2alpha:3beta, and 4alpha:1beta) expressed in Xenopus oocytes. The presence of alpha4 subunit in the oocyte plasmatic membrane increased linearly with the amount of alpha4 mRNA injected. nAChR function and expression were assessed during acute and after chronic nicotine exposure using a two-electrode voltage clamp and whole-mount immunofluorescence assay along with confocal imaging for the detection of the alpha4 subunit. The 2alpha4:3beta2 subunit ratio displayed the highest ACh sensitivity. Nicotine dose-response curves for the 1alpha4:4beta2 and 2alpha4:3beta2 subunit ratios displayed a biphasic behavior at concentrations ranging from 0.1 to 300 microm. A biphasic curve for 4alpha4:1beta2 was obtained at nicotine concentrations higher than 300 microm. The 1alpha4:4beta2 subunit ratio exhibited the lowest ACh- and nicotine-induced macroscopic current, whereas 4alpha4:1beta2 presented the largest currents at all agonist concentrations tested. Desensitization by acute nicotine exposure was more evident as the ratio of beta2:alpha4 subunits increased. All three alpha4beta2 subunit ratios displayed a reduced state of activation after chronic nicotine exposure. Chronic nicotine-induced up-regulation was obvious only for the 2alpha4: 3beta2 subunit ratio. Our data suggest that the subunit ratio of alpha4beta2 determines the functional state of activation, desensitization, and up-regulation of this neuronal nAChR. We propose that independent structural sites regulate alpha4beta2 receptor activation and desensitization.

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

    EPA Science Inventory

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Dani, John A

    2015-01-01

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

  6. Barium permeability of neuronal nicotinic receptor alpha 7 expressed in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Sands, S B; Costa, A C; Patrick, J W

    1993-01-01

    The rat alpha 7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor was expressed and studied in Xenopus oocytes. The magnitude and reversal potential of instantaneous whole cell currents were examined in solutions containing varying concentrations of either calcium or barium, and in the presence or absence of the intracellular calcium chelator BAPTA. In external barium, application of nicotine elicits an inwardly rectifying response; in calcium the response is larger and has a linear IV relation. Pretreatment of oocytes with BAPTA-AM could not prevent activation of calcium-dependent chloride channels in external Ringer containing calcium. Using an extended GHK equation, the permeability ratio PBa/PNa of the alpha 7 receptor was determined to be about 17. Our results suggest that alpha 7 nicotinic receptors are highly permeable to divalent cations. PMID:8312496

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-04-02

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

  8. Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Modulators Reduce Sugar Intake

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-12-01

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

  10. Nicotine-induced Ca2+-myristoyl switch of neuronal Ca2+ sensor VILIP-1 in hippocampal neurons: a possible crosstalk mechanism for nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Zhao, CongJian; Anand, Rene; Braunewell, Karl-Heinz

    2009-03-01

    Visinin-like protein (VILIP-1) belongs to the neuronal Ca2+ sensor family of EF-hand Ca2+-binding proteins that regulate a variety of Ca2+-dependent signal transduction processes in neurons. It is an interaction partner of alpha4beta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) and increases surface expression level and agonist sensitivity of the receptor in oocytes. Nicotine stimulation of nicotinic receptors has been reported to lead to an increase in intracellular Ca2+ concentration by Ca2+-permeable nAChRs, which in turn might lead to activation of VILIP-1, by a mechanism described as the Ca2+-myristoyl switch. It has been postulated that this will lead to co-localization of the proteins at cell membranes, where VILIP-1 can influence functional activity of alpha4-containing nAChRs. In order to test this hypothesis we have investigated whether a nicotine-induced and reversible Ca2+-myristoyl switch of VILIP-1 exists in primary hippocampal neurons and whether pharmacological agents, such as antagonist specific for distinct nAChRs, can interfere with the Ca2+-dependent membrane localization of VILIP-1. Here we report, that only alpha7- but not alpha4-containing nAChRs are able to elicit a Ca2+-dependent and reversible membrane-translocation of VILIP-1 in interneurons as revealed by employing the specific receptor antagonists dihydro-beta-erythroidine and methylallylaconitine. The nAChRs are associated with processes of synaptic plasticity in hippocampal neurons and they have been implicated in the pathology of CNS disorders, including Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. VILIP-1 might provide a novel functional crosstalk between alpha4- and alpha7-containing nAChRs.

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

    PubMed Central

    Jayakar, Selwyn S.

    2011-01-01

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

  12. Alpha-conotoxin-ImI: a competitive antagonist at alpha-bungarotoxin-sensitive neuronal nicotinic receptors in hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Pereira, E F; Alkondon, M; McIntosh, J M; Albuquerque, E X

    1996-09-01

    In the present study, the patch-clamp technique was applied to rat hippocampal neurons or myoballs in culture to study the actions of alpha-conotoxin-ImI on the native alpha-bungarotoxin-sensitive, presumably alpha 7-bearing, neuronal nicotinic receptor and on other ligand-gated channels. Preexposure of the neurons for 5 min to alpha-conotoxin-ImI decreased the peak amplitude of alpha-BGT-sensitive currents (referred to as type IA currents) in a concentration-dependent fashion. Several lines of evidence revealed that the inhibitory effect of alpha-conotoxin-ImI was competitive with respect to the agonist (IC50 approximately 85 nM) and reversible by washing. At 300 nM, alpha-conotoxin-ImI decreased by only 15% the peak amplitude of ACh-evoked currents in rat myoballs, did not affect the activation of currents gated by gamma-aminobutyric acid, glycine, N-methyl-D-aspartate, kainate, or quisqualate in hippocampal neurons, but reduced to approximately 60% the peak amplitude and shortened the decay phase of curare-sensitive, serotonin-gated currents in these neurons. The competitive and reversible nature of the alpha-conotoxin-ImI-induced inhibition of native alpha 7-bearing neuronal nicotinic receptors makes this peptide a valuable new tool for the functional and structural characterization of these receptors in the central nervous system.

  13. Neuronal nicotinic receptors as novel targets for inflammation and neuroprotection: mechanistic considerations and clinical relevance

    PubMed Central

    Bencherif, Merouane

    2009-01-01

    A number of studies have confirmed the potential for neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (NNR)-mediated neuroprotection and, more recently, its anti-inflammatory effects. The mechanistic overlap between these pathways and the ubiquitous effects observed following diverse insults suggest that NNRs modulate fundamental pathways involved in cell survival. These results have wide-reaching implications for the design of experimental therapeutics that regulate inflammatory and anti-apoptotic responses through NNRs and represent an initial step toward understanding the benefits of novel therapeutic strategies for the management of central nervous system disorders that target neuronal survival and associated inflammatory processes. PMID:19498416

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-07-01

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

  15. Differential inhibition of nicotine- and acetylcholine-evoked currents through alpha4beta2 neuronal nicotinic receptors by tobacco cembranoids in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed

    Eaton, Misty J; Ospina, Claudia A; Rodríguez, Abimael D; Eterović, Vesna A

    2004-08-05

    In tobacco, there are two types of compounds that interact with neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nnAChRs) in the brain. The first is the addictive component of tobacco and an agonist of these receptors, nicotine. The second are cyclic diterpenoids called cembranoids that non-competitively inhibit many types of nnAChRs. Nictotinic receptors composed of alpha4beta2 subunits are the predominant type of nicotinic receptors in the brain. These alpha4beta2 receptors are up-regulated upon chronic exposure to nicotine and have been implicated in nicotine addiction. The present study was designed to determine whether the inhibitory effects of two cembranoids from tobacco [(1S, 2E, 4R, 6R, 7E, 11E)-2,7,11-cembratriene-4,6-diol (4R) and its diastereoisomer (1S, 2E, 4S, 6R, 7E, 11E)-2,7,11-cembratriene-4,6-diol (4S)] were comparable on acetylcholine (ACh) and nicotine-evoked currents through alpha4beta2 nnAChRs. alpha4beta2 nnAChRs from rat brain were expressed in Xenopus oocytes and studied using the two-electrode voltage-clamp technique. The dose-response curves for acetylcholine and nicotine were hyperbolic and bell-shaped, respectively. Although there was no difference in the potency between cembranoids 4R and 4S, both of these cembranoids more potently inhibited nicotine-induced currents than acetylcholine-induced currents. Furthermore, both cembranoids were more potent inhibitors of this receptor when they were preincubated for 1 min prior to application of agonist. The finding that cembranoids preferentially inhibit nicotine-induced currents over those elicited by the natural neurotransmitter acetylcholine may have important implications when developing strategies to prevent nicotine addiction and tobacco use.

  16. Neuronal nicotinic receptor agonists improve gait and balance in olivocerebellar ataxia.

    PubMed

    Wecker, L; Engberg, M E; Philpot, R M; Lambert, C S; Kang, C W; Antilla, J C; Bickford, P C; Hudson, C E; Zesiewicz, T A; Rowell, Peter P

    2013-10-01

    Clinical studies have reported that the nicotinic receptor agonist varenicline improves balance and coordination in patients with several types of ataxia, but confirmation in an animal model has not been demonstrated. This study investigated whether varenicline and nicotine could attenuate the ataxia induced in rats following destruction of the olivocerebellar pathway by the neurotoxin 3-acetylpyridine (3-AP). The administration of 3-AP (70 mg/kg followed by 300 mg niacinamide/kg; i.p.) led to an 85% loss of inferior olivary neurons within one week without evidence of recovery, and was accompanied by a 72% decrease in rotorod activity, a 3-fold increase in the time to traverse a stationary beam, a 19% decrease in velocity and 31% decrease in distance moved in the open field, and alterations in gait parameters, with a 19% increase in hindpaw stride width. The daily administration of nicotine (0.33 mg free base/kg) for one week improved rotorod performance by 50% and normalized the increased hindpaw stride width, effects that were prevented by the daily preadministration of the nicotinic antagonist mecamylamine (0.8 mg free base/kg). Varenicline (1 and 3 mg free base/kg daily) also improved rotorod performance by approximately 50% following one week of administration, and although it did not alter the time to traverse the beam, it did improve the ability to maintain balance on the beam. Neither varenicline nor nicotine, at doses that improved balance, affected impaired locomotor activity in the open field. Results provide evidence that nicotinic agonists are of benefit for alleviating some of the behavioral deficits in olivocerebellar ataxia and warrant further studies to elucidate the specific mechanism(s) involved.

  17. Pharmacology of nicotinic receptor-mediated inhibition in rat dorsolateral septal neurones.

    PubMed Central

    Wong, L A; Gallagher, J P

    1991-01-01

    1. Intracellular electrophysiological techniques were employed to investigate the effects of nicotinic receptor stimulation on rat dorsolateral septal nucleus (DLSN) neurones in a submerged rat brain slice preparation. 2. Acetylcholine (in the presence of the muscarinic antagonist, atropine), nicotine or dimethylphenylpiperazinium (DMPP), applied either by pressure ejection or superfusion, produced predominantly a membrane potential hyperpolarization. 3. Following concentration-response comparisons, DMPP appeared to exhibit fewer desensitizing properties and greater efficacy than nicotine with half-maximal hyperpolarizing responses attainable at 3 and 10 microM, respectively. 4. Pharmacological analyses revealed that the agonist-induced membrane hyperpolarization was sensitive to antagonism by mecamylamine (50-100 microM) and neuronal bungarotoxin (0.2-0.3 microM), but not alpha-bungarotoxin (0.5-1.0 microM), curare (10-50 microM) or dihydro-beta-erythroidine (50-100 microM). 5. Hyperpolarizing responses to DMPP were found to reverse near the equilibrium potential for potassium and were sensitive to changes in extracellular potassium concentration as predicted by the Nernst equation. Under single-electrode voltage clamp, application of DMPP produced an outward current (75-100 pA) which approached reversal at around -88 mV. These findings indicated that the hyperpolarizing response to nicotinic receptor stimulation was mediated by changes in membrane permeability to potassium. 6. DMPP-induced membrane hyperpolarization resulted from a direct action on postsynaptic DLSN neurones since the response persisted under conditions of superfusion with calcium-free/high-magnesium media or tetrodotoxin; both conditions blocked orthodromically induced neurotransmission. The hyperpolarizing response remained unaltered in TTX but was diminished in calcium-free/high-magnesium media. Further studies revealed blockade of the DMPP response following intracellular injection of EGTA

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1988-01-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1995-03-20

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1991-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-10-24

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  4. Differential modulation of GABAA and NMDA receptors by α7-nicotinic receptor desensitization in cultured rat hippocampal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Lei; Cui, Wen-yu; Chen, Ru-zhu; Wang, Hai

    2016-01-01

    Aim: To explore the modulatory effect of desensitized α7-containing nicotinic receptors (α7-nAChRs) on excitatory and inhibitory amino acid receptors in cultured hippocampal neurons and to identify the mechanism underlying this effect. Methods: Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were performed on cultured rat hippocampal neurons to measure α7-nAChR currents and to determine the role of desensitized α7-nAChRs on brain amino acid receptor activity. Results: Pulse and perfusion applications of the α7-nAChR agonist choline were applied to induce different types of α7-nAChR desensitization in cultured hippocampal neurons. After a brief choline pulse, α7-nAChR was desensitized as a result of receptor activation, which reduced the response of the A type γ-aminobutyric acid (GABAA) receptor to its agonist, muscimol, and enhanced the response of the NMDA receptor to its agonist NMDA. By contrast, the responses of glycine or AMPA receptors to their agonists, glycine or AMPA, respectively, were not affected. Pretreatment with the α7-nAChR antagonist methyllycaconitine (MLA, 10 nmol/L) blocked the choline-induced negative modulation of the GABAA receptor and the positive modulation of the NMDA receptor. The regulation of the GABAA and NMDA receptors was confirmed using another type of α7-nAChR desensitization, which was produced by a low concentration of choline perfusion. The negative modulation of the GABAA receptor was characterized by choline-duration dependency and intracellular calcium dependency, but the positive modulation of the NMDA receptor was not associated with cytoplasmic calcium. Conclusion: Brain GABAA and NMDA receptors are modulated negatively and positively, respectively, by desensitized α7-nAChR as a result of choline pretreatment in cultured hippocampal neurons. PMID:26806304

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

    PubMed

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

    2002-03-19

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2002-01-01

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

  7. Antagonist pharmacology of desensitizing and non-desensitizing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in cockroach neurons.

    PubMed

    Salgado, Vincent L

    2016-09-01

    Two α-bungarotoxin-sensitive nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptor subtypes in neurons of the American cockroach have been identified as desensitizing (nAChD) and selectively inhibitable with 100nM imidacloprid, and non-desensitizing (nAChN) and selectively inhibitable with 100pM methyllycaconitine. In this paper, the single-electrode voltage-clamp technique was used to measure concentration-response relations for the action of ACh and five antagonists on pharmacologically separated nAChD and nAChN receptors of acutely dissociated neurons from thoracic ganglia of the American cockroach. A dual bath and U-tube perfusion system was used to achieve rapid application of ACh in the continued presence of antagonists, which was essential to accurately measure inhibition by rapidly-reversible antagonists. ACh activated both receptors with an EC50 of 7μM and the antagonist potencies were (nAChD/nAChN in nM): dihydro-β-erythroidine: 1.0/5.6, d-tubocurarine: 1000/34, condelphine: 0.39/0.65, phencyclidine: 74/980 and mecamylamine 47/1150. While each of these antagonists displayed some subtype selectivity, none are selective enough to be used as subtype-selective tools. These results bring to a total of 16 the number of nicotinic compounds that have been measured on nAChD and nAChN currents. Characterization of these receptors is important for understanding the role of nAChRs in the insect nervous system and the mechanism of action of insecticides.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1996-01-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1994-09-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1996-03-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-07-01

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

  12. Activation and inhibition of rat neuronal nicotinic receptors by ABT-418

    PubMed Central

    Papke, Roger L; Thinschmidt, Jeffrey S; Moulton, Becky A; Meyer, Edwin M; Poirier, Amy

    1997-01-01

    ABT-418 appeared to function as a relatively broad spectrum activator of neuronal nicotinic receptors, expressed in Xenopus oocytes, with little cross reactivity to the mammalian muscle receptor subtype. However, the relative potencies of ABT-418 at the various subtypes differed from those acetylcholine (ACh). For example, ACh was most potent at α3β2 (EC50≈30 μM) and least potent at α2β2 (EC50≈500 μM). ABT-418 was most potent at α4β2 and α2β2 (EC50≈6 μM and 11 μM, respectively) and least potent at α3β4 (EC50≈188 μM).In addition to activating neuronal receptors, ABT-418 exhibited complex properties, including the inhibition of ACh responses.The current responses elicited by relatively high concentrations of ABT-418 on the α4β2 receptor subtype were protracted beyond the application interval. The coapplication of ABT-418 with either of the use-dependent inhibitors bis(1,2,2,6,6-tetramethyl-4-pipendimyl)sebacate (BTMPS) or tetramethyl-pipenidine (TMP) eliminated the late protracted phase of the currents with only small effects on the initial activation phase. When the reversible inhibitor TMP was washed from the bath, the previously inhibited late current reappeared, suggesting that the observed mixed agonist-antagonist effects of ABT-418 and (±)-epibatidine on α4β2 were due to a concentration-dependent noncompetitive inhibition, an effect similar to that obtained for (−)-nicotine.The inhibition of α4β2 receptors by ABT-418 was voltage-dependent. When high concentrations of ABT-418 were applied under depolarizing conditions, additional late currents could be observed under conditions which suggested that a build up of ABT-418 in an unstirred layer over the surface of the oocyte was occurring. This may have been due to the dissociation of the drug from channel blocking sites on the receptors themselves, or alternatively, from the plasma membrane of the cells. PMID:9031746

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-22

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2003-11-01

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

  15. Artemin growth factor increases nicotinic cholinergic receptor subunit expression and activity in nociceptive sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Artemin (Artn), a member of the glial cell line-derived growth factor (GDNF) family, supports the development and function of a subpopulation of peptidergic, TRPV1-positive sensory neurons. Artn (enovin, neublastin) is elevated in inflamed tissue and its injection in skin causes transient thermal hyperalgesia. A genome wide expression analysis of trigeminal ganglia of mice that overexpress Artn in the skin (ART-OE mice) showed elevation in nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits, suggesting these ion channels contribute to Artn-induced sensitivity. Here we have used gene expression, immunolabeling, patch clamp electrophysiology and behavioral testing assays to investigate the link between Artn, nicotinic subunit expression and thermal hypersensitivity. Results Reverse transcriptase-PCR validation showed increased levels of mRNAs encoding the nAChR subunits α3 (13.3-fold), β3 (4-fold) and β4 (7.7-fold) in trigeminal ganglia and α3 (4-fold) and β4 (2.8-fold) in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) of ART-OE mice. Sensory ganglia of ART-OE mice had increased immunoreactivity for nAChRα3 and exhibited increased overlap in labeling with GFRα3-positive neurons. Patch clamp analysis of back-labeled cutaneous afferents showed that while the majority of nicotine-evoked currents in DRG neurons had biophysical and pharmacological properties of α7-subunit containing nAChRs, the Artn-induced increase in α3 and β4 subunits resulted in functional channels. Behavioral analysis of ART-OE and wildtype mice showed that Artn-induced thermal hyperalgesia can be blocked by mecamylamine or hexamethonium. Complete Freund’s adjuvant (CFA) inflammation of paw skin, which causes an increase in Artn in the skin, also increased the level of nAChR mRNAs in DRG. Finally, the increase in nAChRs transcription was not dependent on the Artn-induced increase in TRPV1 or TRPA1 in ART-OE mice since nAChRs were elevated in ganglia of TRPV1/TRPA1 double knockout mice. Conclusions

  16. Diversity of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in rat hippocampal neurons. I. Pharmacological and functional evidence for distinct structural subtypes.

    PubMed

    Alkondon, M; Albuquerque, E X

    1993-06-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors present on cultured hippocampal neurons from fetal rats were characterized by means of whole-cell patch-clamp technique, using a number of structurally divergent agonists and highly selective antagonists. Based upon the decay kinetics of the currents elicited by 3 mM acetylcholine (ACh) and their sensitivities to agonists and antagonists, the neurons were shown to exhibit four current types, IA, IB, II and III. Rapidly decaying currents (type IA) that were blocked by alpha-bungarotoxin (10 nM), kappa-bungarotoxin (10 nM) and methyllycaconitine (MLA, 1 nM) were the most frequent and were found in 83% of the neurons tested. Type II currents (found in 5% of the neurons) were blocked by dihydro-beta-erythroidine (10 nM), and by high concentrations of MLA and kappa-bungarotoxin (100 nM each) but not by alpha-bungarotoxin (100 nM). Type III currents (elicited in 2% of the neurons) decayed slowly and were blocked by (+/-)-mecamylamine (1 microM) but not by alpha-bungarotoxin, kappa-bungarotoxin or MLA (each at 100 nM). Some of the cells (10% of the neurons) had mixed responses (named type IB), which were only partially blocked by MLA (1 nM) or dihydro-beta-erythroidine (10 nM) alone and were completely blocked by combination of the two agents. The order of potency of agonists in activating the currents was the following: for type IA, (+)-anatoxin-a > 1,1-dimethyl-4-phenyl-piperazinium > (-)-nicotine > cystisine > ACh > carbachol > (+)-nicotine > arecoline > suberyldicholine; for type II, ACh > (+)-anatoxin-a > (-)-nicotine > 1,1-dimethyl-4-phenyl-piperazinium > carbachol > cytisine > (+)-nicotine > suberyldicholine > arecoline. Certain agonists were particularly useful in discriminating among the various types of currents: ACh, carbachol, (-)-nicotine and suberyldicholine for type II, and cytisine for type III currents. The EC50 of ACh was approximately 130 microM for type IA and approximately 2 microM for type II currents. A marked

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-07-01

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

  18. Strychnine activates neuronal α7 nicotinic receptors after mutations in the leucine ring and transmitter binding site domains

    PubMed Central

    Palma, Eleonora; Fucile, Sergio; Barabino, Benedetta; Miledi, Ricardo; Eusebi, Fabrizio

    1999-01-01

    Recent work has shown that strychnine, the potent and selective antagonist of glycine receptors, is also an antagonist of nicotinic acetylcholine (AcCho) receptors including neuronal homomeric α7 receptors, and that mutating Leu-247 of the α7 nicotinic AcCho receptor-channel domain (L247Tα7; mut1) converts some nicotinic antagonists into agonists. Therefore, a study was made of the effects of strychnine on Xenopus oocytes expressing the chick wild-type α7 or L247Tα7 receptors. In these oocytes, strychnine itself did not elicit appreciable membrane currents but reduced the currents elicited by AcCho in a reversible and dose-dependent manner. In sharp contrast, in oocytes expressing L247Tα7 receptors with additional mutations at Cys-189 and Cys-190, in the extracellular N-terminal domain (L247T/C189–190Sα7; mut2), micromolar concentrations of strychnine elicited inward currents that were reversibly inhibited by the nicotinic receptor blocker α-bungarotoxin. Single-channel recordings showed that strychnine gated mut2-channels with two conductance levels, 56 pS and 42 pS, and with kinetic properties similar to AcCho-activated channels. We conclude that strychnine is a modulator, as well as an activator, of some homomeric nicotinic α7 receptors. After injecting oocytes with mixtures of cDNAs encoding mut1 and mut2 subunits, the expressed hybrid receptors were activated by strychnine, similar to the mut2, and had a high affinity to AcCho like the mut1. A pentameric symmetrical model yields the striking conclusion that two identical α7 subunits may be sufficient to determine the functional properties of α7 receptors. PMID:10557336

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

    PubMed Central

    Turner, Jill R.; Castellano, Laura M.

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  2. Neuronal α7 Nicotinic Receptors as a Target for the Treatment of Schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Wallace, Tanya L; Bertrand, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Schizophrenia is a lifelong disease, the burden of which is often underestimated. Characterized by positive (e.g., hallucinations) and negative (e.g., avolition, amotivation) symptoms, schizophrenia is also accompanied with profound impairments in cognitive function that progress throughout the development of the disease. Although treatment with antipsychotic medications can effectively dampen some of the positive symptoms, these medications largely fail to reverse cognitive deficits or to mitigate negative symptoms. With a worldwide prevalence of approximately 1%, schizophrenia remains a large unmet medical need that stands to benefit greatly from (1) continued research to better understand the biological underpinnings of the disease and (2) the targeted development of novel therapeutics to improve the lives of those affected individuals. Improvements in our understanding of the neuronal networks associated with schizophrenia as well as progress in identifying genetic risk factors and environmental conditions that may predispose individuals to developing the disease are advancing new strategies to study and treat it. Herein, we review the evidence that supports the role of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the central nervous system and why these receptors constitute a promising target to treat some of the prominent symptoms of schizophrenia.

  3. Neuronal Nicotinic Receptors in Sleep-Related Epilepsy: Studies in Integrative Biology

    PubMed Central

    Becchetti, Andrea

    2012-01-01

    Although Mendelian diseases are rare, when considered one by one, overall they constitute a significant social burden. Besides the medical aspects, they propose us one of the most general biological problems. Given the simplest physiological perturbation of an organism, that is, a single gene mutation, how do its effects percolate through the hierarchical biological levels to determine the pathogenesis? And how robust is the physiological system to this perturbation? To solve these problems, the study of genetic epilepsies caused by mutant ion channels presents special advantages, as it can exploit the full range of modern experimental methods. These allow to extend the functional analysis from single channels to whole brains. An instructive example is autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy (ADNFLE), which can be caused by mutations in neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. In vitro, such mutations often produce hyperfunctional receptors, at least in heterozygous condition. However, understanding how this leads to sleep-related frontal epilepsy is all but straightforward. Several available animal models are helping us to determine the effects of ADNFLE mutations on the mammalian brain. Because of the complexity of the cholinergic regulation in both developing and mature brains, several pathogenic mechanisms are possible, which also present different therapeutic implications. PMID:25969754

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  5. TC-5214 (S-(+)-mecamylamine): a neuronal nicotinic receptor modulator with antidepressant activity.

    PubMed

    Lippiello, Patrick M; Beaver, Jessica S; Gatto, Gregory J; James, John W; Jordan, Kristen G; Traina, Vincent M; Xie, Jianxun; Bencherif, Merouane

    2008-01-01

    Both clinical and preclinical data support a potential therapeutic benefit of modulating the activity of CNS neuronal nicotinic receptors (NNRs) to treat depression and anxiety disorders. Based on the notion that the depressive states involve hypercholinergic tone, we have examined the potential palliative role of NNR antagonism in these disorders, using TC-5214 (S-(+) enantiomer of mecamylamine), a noncompetitive NNR antagonist. TC-5214 demonstrated positive effects in a number of animal models of depression and anxiety. TC-5214 was active in the forced swim test in rats (minimum effective dose (MED)=3 mg/kg i.p.), a classical depression model. It was also active in the behavioral despair test in mice (0.1-3.0 mg/kg i.p.), another model of depression. In the social interaction paradigm in rats, a model of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), TC-5214 was active at a dose of 0.05 mg/kg s.c. In the light/dark chamber paradigm in rats, a model of GAD and phobia, TC-5214 was also active at a dose of 0.05 mg/kg s.c. Although TC-5214 shows modest selectivity among NNR subtypes, the antidepressant and anxiolytic effects seen in these studies are likely attributable to antagonist effects at the alpha4beta2 NNRs. This is supported by the observation of similar effects with alpha4beta2-selective partial agonists such as cytisine and with alpha4beta2-selective antagonists such as TC-2216. TC-5214 was well tolerated in acute and chronic toxicity studies in mice, rats, and dogs, showed no mutagenicity and displayed safety pharmacology, pharmacokinetic and metabolic profiles appropriate for therapeutic development. Overall, the results support a novel nicotinic cholinergic antagonist mechanism for antidepressant and anxiolytic effects and highlight the potential of NNR antagonists such as TC-5214 as therapeutics for the treatment of anxiety and depression.

  6. Regulation of GABAergic inputs to CA1 pyramidal neurons by nicotinic receptors and kynurenic acid.

    PubMed

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

    2012-05-01

    Impaired α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) function and GABAergic transmission in the hippocampus and elevated brain levels of kynurenic acid (KYNA), an astrocyte-derived metabolite of the kynurenine pathway, are key features of schizophrenia. KYNA acts as a noncompetitive antagonist with respect to agonists at both α7 nAChRs and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors. Here, we tested the hypothesis that in hippocampal slices tonically active α7 nAChRs control GABAergic transmission to CA1 pyramidal neurons and are sensitive to inhibition by rising levels of KYNA. The α7 nAChR-selective antagonist α-bungarotoxin (α-BGT; 100 nM) and methyllycaconitine (MLA; 10 nM), an antagonist at α7 and other nAChRs, reduced by 51.3 ± 1.3 and 65.2 ± 1.5%, respectively, the frequency of GABAergic postsynaptic currents (PSCs) recorded from CA1 pyramidal neurons. MLA had no effect on miniature GABAergic PSCs. Thus, GABAergic synaptic activity in CA1 pyramidal neurons is maintained, in part, by tonically active α7 nAChRs located on the preterminal region of axons and/or the somatodendritic region of interneurons that synapse onto the neurons under study. L-Kynurenine (20 or 200 μM) or KYNA (20-200 μM) suppressed concentration-dependently the frequency of GABAergic PSCs; the inhibitory effect of 20 μM L-kynurenine had an onset time of approximately 35 min and could not be detected in the presence of 100 nM α-BGT. These results suggest that KYNA levels generated from 20 μM kynurenine inhibit tonically active α7 nAChR-dependent GABAergic transmission to the pyramidal neurons. Disruption of nAChR-dependent GABAergic transmission by mildly elevated levels of KYNA can be an important determinant of the cognitive deficits presented by patients with schizophrenia.

  7. Bimodal concentration-response of nicotine involves the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1, and transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 channels in mouse trachea and sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Kichko, Tatjana I; Lennerz, Jochen; Eberhardt, Mirjam; Babes, Ramona M; Neuhuber, Winfried; Kobal, Gerd; Reeh, Peter W

    2013-11-01

    High concentrations of nicotine, as in the saliva of oral tobacco consumers or in smoking cessation aids, have been shown to sensitize/activate recombinant transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (rTRPV1) and mouse TRPA1 (mTRPA1) channels. By measuring stimulated calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) release from the isolated mouse trachea, we established a bimodal concentration-response relationship with a threshold below 10 µM (-)-nicotine, a maximum at 100 µM, an apparent nadir between 0.5 and 10 mM, and a renewed increase at 20 mM. The first peak was unchanged in TRPV1/A1 double-null mutants as compared with wild-types and was abolished by specific nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) inhibitors and by camphor, discovered to act as nicotinic antagonist. The nicotine response at 20 mM was strongly pHe-dependent, - five times greater at pH 9.0 than 7.4, indicating that intracellular permeation of the (uncharged) alkaloid was required to reach the TRPV1/A1 binding sites. The response was strongly reduced in both null mutants, and more so in double-null mutants. Upon measuring calcium transients in nodose/jugular and dorsal root ganglion neurons in response to 100 µM nicotine, 48% of the vagal (but only 14% of the somatic) sensory neurons were activated, the latter very weakly. However, nicotine 20 mM at pH 9.0 repeatedly activated almost every single cultured neuron, partly by releasing intracellular calcium and independent of TRPV1/A1 and nAChRs. In conclusion, in mouse tracheal sensory nerves nAChRs are 200-fold more sensitive to nicotine than TRPV1/A1; they are widely coexpressed with the capsaicin receptor among vagal sensory neurons and twice as abundant as TRPA1. Nicotine is the major stimulant in tobacco, and its sensory impact through nAChRs should not be disregarded.

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-11-10

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-02-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  11. Shifting topographic activation and 5-HT1A receptor-mediated inhibition of dorsal raphe serotonin neurons produced by nicotine exposure and withdrawal.

    PubMed

    Sperling, Robin; Commons, Kathryn G

    2011-05-01

    Nicotine activates serotonin [5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT)] neurons innervating the forebrain, and this is thought to reduce anxiety. Nicotine withdrawal has also been associated with an activation of 5-HT neurotransmission, although withdrawal increases anxiety. In each case, 5-HT1A receptors have been implicated in the response. To determine whether there are different subgroups of 5-HT cells activated during nicotine administration and withdrawal, we mapped the appearance of Fos, a marker of neuronal activation, in 5-HT cells of the dorsal raphe nucleus (DR) and median raphe nucleus (MR). To understand the role of 5-HT1A receptor feedback inhibitory pathways in 5-HT cell activity during these conditions, we administered a selective 5-HT1A receptor antagonist and measured novel disinhibited Fos expression within 5-HT cells. Using these approaches, we found evidence that acute nicotine exposure activates 5-HT neurons rostrally and in the lateral wings of the DR, whereas there is 5-HT1A receptor-dependent inhibition of cells located ventrally at both the rostral level and mid-level. Previous chronic nicotine exposure did not modify the pattern of activation produced by acute nicotine exposure, but increased 5-HT1A receptor-dependent inhibition of 5-HT cells in the caudal DR. This pattern was nearly reversed during nicotine withdrawal, when there was evidence for caudal activation and mid-level and rostral 5-HT1A receptor-dependent inhibition. These results suggest that the distinct behavioral states produced by nicotine exposure and withdrawal correlate with reciprocal rostral-caudal patterns of activation and 5-HT1A receptor-mediated inhibition of DR 5-HT neurons. The complementary patterns of activation and inhibition suggest that 5-HT1A receptors may help to shape distinct topographic patterns of activation within the DR.

  12. Regulation of neuronal function by choline and 4OH-GTS-21 through alpha 7 nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Uteshev, Vladimir V; Meyer, Edwin M; Papke, Roger L

    2003-04-01

    A unique feature of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor physiology is that, under normal physiological conditions, alpha7 receptors are constantly perfused with their natural selective agonist, choline. Studying neurons of hypothalamic tuberomammillary (TM) nucleus, we show that choline and the selective alpha7 receptor agonist 4OH-GTS-21 can regulate neuronal functions directly, via activation of the native alpha7 receptors, and indirectly, via desensitizing those receptors or transferring them into a state "primed" for desensitization. The direct action produces depolarization and thereby increases the TM neuron spontaneous firing (SF) rate. The regulation of the spontaneous firing rate is robust in a nonphysiological range of choline concentrations >200 microM. However, modest effects persist at concentrations of choline that are likely to be attained perineuronally under some conditions (20-100 microM). At high physiological concentration levels, the indirect choline action reduces or even eliminates the responsiveness of alpha7 receptors and their availability to other strong cholinergic inputs. Similarly to choline, 4OH-GTS-21 increases the TM neuron spontaneous firing rate via activation of alpha7 receptors, and this regulation is robust in the range of clinically relevant concentrations of 4OH-GTS-21. We conclude that factors that regulate choline accumulation in the brain and in experimental slices such as choline uptake, hydrolysis of ACh, membrane phosphatidylcholine catabolism, and solution perfusion rate influence alpha7 nAChR neuronal and synaptic functions, especially under pathological conditions such as stroke, seizures, Alzheimer's disease, and head trauma, when the choline concentration in the CSF is expected to rise.

  13. The magnitude of alpha7 nicotinic receptor currents in rat hippocampal neurons is dependent upon GABAergic activity and depolarization.

    PubMed

    Santos, Hélio R; Ribeiro, Helizane S; Setti-Perdigão, Pedro; Albuquerque, Edson X; Castro, Newton G

    2006-10-01

    Hippocampal alpha7(*) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors modulate the release of GABA and glutamate. The control of functional receptor pools by cell firing or synaptic activity could therefore allow for a local adjustment of the sensitivity to cholinergic input upon changes in neuronal activity. We first investigated whether tonic depolarization or cell firing affected the function of alpha7(*). The amplitude of alpha7(*)-gated whole-cell currents in cultured rat hippocampal neurons exposed to high-extracellular K(+) (40 mM KCl) for 24 to 48 h increased 1.3 to 5.5 times. The proportion of alpha7(*)-responsive neurons (99%), the potency of acetylcholine, and the sensitivity to nicotinic antagonists were all unaffected. In contrast, block of spontaneous cell firing with tetrodotoxin for 24 h led to a 37% reduction in mean current amplitude. Reduced alpha7(*) responses were seen after a 24-h blockade of N-type calcium channels but not of L-type calcium channels, N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA), or non-NMDA receptor channels, protein kinase C, or calcium-calmodulin kinases II and IV. The N-type or L-type calcium channel antagonists omega-conotoxin GVIA and nifedipine did not prevent the current-potentiating effect of KCl. The GABA(A) antagonist picrotoxin led to a 44% reduction of the currents, despite increasing action potential firing, and also reversed the potentiating effect of KCl. Treatment with GABA, midazolam, or a GABA uptake blocker led to increased currents. These data indicate that alpha7(*)-gated currents in hippocampal neurons are regulated by GABAergic activity and suggest that depolarization-induced GABA release may underlie the effect of increased extracellular KCl.

  14. Mapping the location of functional nicotinic and gamma-aminobutyric acidA receptors on hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Alkondon, M; Pereira, E F; Albuquerque, E X

    1996-12-01

    To assess the density and distribution of functional nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors on hippocampal neurons, we have combined infrared videomicroscopy with a nanorobotic micromanipulator system and studied the receptor-mediated currents by using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique. Acetylcholine or GABA was applied by pressure ejection onto a small segment of either cell soma or dendrite, and the resulting current was measured in cultured hippocampal neurons by using a whole-cell pipette positioned at the cell soma. Type IA nicotinic currents, sensitive to blockade by methyllycaconitine (1 nM) and alpha-bungarotoxin and associated with alpha 7-subunit-containing nAChRs, type II currents, sensitive to blockade by dihydro-beta-erythroidine (100 nM) subserved by alpha 4 beta 2 nAChRs, and GABA-mediated currents were evoked when the agonists were applied to either cell soma or the dendrites. Analysis of the current amplitude with respect to the membrane area covered by the applied agonist provided an estimation of the receptor density along the somato-dendritic axis of the hippocampal neurons. Such analysis revealed: 1) a nonuniform distribution for the receptor types studied; 2) a higher density of nAChR and GABA receptors at the dendrites than at the soma; and 3) an increasing density for both nAChR subtypes with distance from the center of the cell soma, but increasing and then decreasing density for the GABA receptor. Exposure of cultured hippocampal neurons to colchicine (100 nM for 3 days) produced a dramatic reduction in the dendritic branching, and this morphological feature was associated with a significant decrease in the receptor density, such an effect being more prominent for nAChRs than for GABA receptors. Given the high Ca+2 permeability of nAChRs, the dendritic localization of nAChRs suggest that they are involved in modulating the synaptic efficacy at the level of the dendrites.

  15. Sustained nicotine exposure differentially affects alpha 3 beta 2 and alpha 4 beta 2 neuronal nicotinic receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Y N; Amin, J; Weiss, D S; Wecker, L

    1996-02-01

    To determine whether prolonged exposure to nicotine differentially affects alpha 3 beta 2 versus alpha 4 beta 2 nicotinic receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes, oocytes were coinjected with subunit cRNAs, and peak responses to agonist, evoked by 0.7 or 7 microM nicotine for alpha 4 beta 2 and alpha 3 beta 2 receptors, respectively, were determined before and following incubation for up to 48 h with nanomolar concentrations of nicotine. Agonist responses of alpha 4 beta 2 receptors decreased in a concentration-dependent manner with IC50 values in the 10 nM range following incubation for 24 h and in the 1 nM range following incubation for 48 h. In contrast, responses of alpha 3 beta 2 receptors following incubation for 24-48 h with 1,000 nM nicotine decreased by only 50-60%, and total ablation of responses could not be achieved. Attenuation of responses occurred within the first 5 min of nicotine exposure and was a first-order process for both subtypes; half-lives for inactivation were 4.09 and 2.36 min for alpha 4 beta 2 and alpha 3 beta 2 receptors, respectively. Recovery was also first-order for both subtypes; half-lives for recovery were 21 and 7.5 h for alpha 4 beta 2 and alpha 3 beta 2 receptors, respectively. Thus, the responsiveness of both receptors decreased following sustained exposure to nicotine, but alpha 4 beta 2 receptors recovered much slower. Results may explain the differential effect of sustained nicotine exposure on nicotinic receptor-mediated neurotransmitter release.

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-05-01

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

  17. Nicotine recruits glutamate receptors to postsynaptic sites.

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-01

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

  18. Nicotine Recruits Glutamate Receptors to Postsynaptic Sites

    PubMed Central

    Duan, Jing-jing; Lozada, Adrian F.; Gou, Chen-yu; Xu, Jing; Chen, Yuan; Berg, Darwin K.

    2015-01-01

    Cholinergic neurons project throughout the nervous system and activate nicotinic receptors to modulate synaptic function in ways that shape higher order brain function. The acute effects of nicotinic signaling on long-term synaptic plasticity have been well-characterized. Less well understood is how chronic exposure to low levels of nicotine, such as those encountered by habitual smokers, can alter neural connections to promote addiction and other lasting behavioral effects. We show here that chronic exposure of hippocampal neurons in culture to low levels of nicotine recruits AMPA and NMDA receptors to the cell surface and sequesters them at postsynaptic sites. The receptors include GluA2-containing AMPA receptors, which are responsible for most of the excitatory postsynaptic current mediated by AMPA receptors on the neurons, and include NMDA receptors containing GluN1 and GluN2B subunits. Moreover, we find that the nicotine treatment also increases expression of the presynaptic component synapsin 1 and arranges it in puncta juxtaposed to the additional AMPA and NMDA receptor puncta, suggestive of increases in synaptic contacts. Consistent with increased synaptic input, we find that the nicotine treatment leads to an increase in the excitatory postsynaptic currents mediated by AMPA and NMDA receptors. Further, the increases skew the ratio of excitatory-to-inhibitory input the cell receives, and this holds both for pyramidal neurons and inhibitory neurons in the hippocampal CA1 region. The GluN2B-containing NMDA receptor redistribution at synapses is associated with a significant increase in GluN2B phosphorylation at Tyr1472, a site known to prevent GluN2B endocytosis. These results suggest that chronic exposure to low levels of nicotine not only alters functional connections but also is likely to change excitability levels across networks. Further, it may increase the propensity for synaptic plasticity, given the increase in synaptic NMDA receptors. PMID:26365992

  19. Role of the extracellular transmembrane domain interface in gating and pharmacology of a heteromeric neuronal nicotinic receptor.

    PubMed

    Aldea, Marcos; Castillo, Mar; Mulet, José; Sala, Salvador; Criado, Manuel; Sala, Francisco

    2010-05-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) transmit the agonist signal to the channel gate through a number of extracellular domains. We have previously shown that particular details of the process of coupling binding to gating could be quantitative and qualitatively different in muscle and neuronal type nAChRs. We have extended previous studies on homomeric alpha7 nAChRs to heteromeric alpha3beta4 nAChRs, by mutating residues located at loops 2 and 7, and M2-M3 linker of both alpha3 and beta4 subunits which, in order to monitor surface expression, were modified to bind alpha-bungarotoxin, and expressed in Xenopus oocytes. We show that, in general, mutations in these domains of both alpha3 and beta4 subunits affect the gating function, although the effects are slightly larger if they are inserted in the alpha3 subunit. However, the involvement of a previously reported intrasubunit interaction in coupling (Gln48-Ile130) seems to be restricted to the beta4 subunit. We also show that mutations at these domains, particularly loop 2 of the alpha3 subunit, change the pharmacological profile of alpha3beta4 nAChRs, decreasing nicotine's and increasing cytisine's effectiveness relative to acetylcholine. It is concluded that, unlike muscle nAChRs, the non-alpha subunits play a relevant role in the coupling process of neuronal alpha3beta4 nAChRs.

  20. ENDOGENOUS SIGNALING THROUGH α7-CONTAINING NICOTINIC RECEPTORS PROMOTES MATURATION AND INTEGRATION OF ADULTBORN NEURONS IN THE HIPPOCAMPUS

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Nolan R.; Fernandes, Catarina C.; Halff, Andrew W.; Berg, Darwin K.

    2010-01-01

    Neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus occurs throughout adult mammalian life and is essential for proper hippocampal function. Early in their development, adultborn neurons express homomeric α7-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (α7-nAChRs) and receive direct cholinergic innervation. We show here that functional α7-nAChRs are necessary for normal survival, maturation, and integration of adultborn neurons in the dentate gyrus. Stereotaxic retroviral injection into the dentate gyrus of wildtype and α7-knockout (α7KO) male and female mice was used to label and birthdate adultborn neurons for morphological and electrophysiological measures; BrdU injections were used to quantify cell survival. In α7KO mice, we find that adultborn neurons develop with truncated, less complex dendritic arbors, and display GABAergic postsynaptic currents with immature kinetics. The neurons also have a prolonged period of GABAergic depolarization characteristic of an immature state. In this condition they receive fewer spontaneous synaptic currents and are more prone to die during the critical period when adultborn neurons are normally integrated into behaviorally relevant networks. Even those adultborn neurons that survive the critical period retain long-term dendritic abnormalities in α7KO mice. Interestingly, local infection with retroviral constructs to knockdown α7-mRNA mimics the α7KO phenotype, demonstrating that the relevant α7-nAChR signaling is cell-autonomous. The results indicate a profound role for α7-nAChRs in adult neurogenesis and predict that α7-nAChR loss will cause progressive impairment in hippocampal circuitry and function over time as fewer neurons are added to the dentate gyrus and those that are added integrate less well. PMID:20592195

  1. Differential roles of α6β2* and α4β2* neuronal nicotinic receptors in nicotine- and cocaine-conditioned reward in mice.

    PubMed

    Sanjakdar, Sarah S; Maldoon, Pretal P; Marks, Michael J; Brunzell, Darlene H; Maskos, Uwe; McIntosh, J Michael; Bowers, M Scott; Damaj, M Imad

    2015-01-01

    Mesolimbic α6* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are thought to have an important role in nicotine behavioral effects. However, little is known about the role of the various α6*-nAChRs subtypes in the rewarding effects of nicotine. In this report, we investigated and compared the role of α6*-nAChRs subtypes and their neuro-anatomical locus in nicotine and cocaine reward-like effects in the conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm, using pharmacological antagonism of α6β2* nAChRs and genetic deletion of the α6 or α4 subunits in mice. We found that α6 KO mice exhibited a rightward shift in the nicotine dose-response curve compared with WT littermates but that α4 KO failed to show nicotine preference, suggesting that α6α4β2*-nAChRs are involved. Furthermore, α6β2* nAChRs in nucleus accumbens were found to have an important role in nicotine-conditioned reward as the intra-accumbal injection of the selective α6β2* α-conotoxin MII [H9A; L15A], blocked nicotine CPP. In contrast to nicotine, α6 KO failed to condition to cocaine, but cocaine CPP in the α4 KO was preserved. Intriguingly, α-conotoxin MII [H9A; L15A], blocked cocaine conditioning in α4 KO mice, implicating α6β2* nAChRs in cocaine reward. Importantly, these effects did not generalize as α6 KO showed both a conditioned place aversion to lithium chloride as well as CPP to palatable food. Finally, dopamine uptake was not different between the α6 KO or WT mice. These data illustrate that the subjective rewarding effects of both nicotine and cocaine may be mediated by mesolimbic α6β2* nAChRs and that antagonists of these receptor subtypes may exhibit therapeutic potential.

  2. Direct action and modulating effect of (+)- and (-)-nicotine on ion channels expressed in trigeminal sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Schreiner, Benjamin S P; Lehmann, Ramona; Thiel, Ulrike; Ziemba, Paul M; Beltrán, Leopoldo R; Sherkheli, Muhammad A; Jeanbourquin, Philippe; Hugi, Alain; Werner, Markus; Gisselmann, Günter; Hatt, Hanns

    2014-04-05

    Nicotine sensory perception is generally thought to be mediated by nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptors. However, recent data strongly support the idea that other receptors (e.g., transient receptor potential A1 channel, TRPA1) and other pathways contribute to the detection mechanisms underlying the olfactory and trigeminal cell response to nicotine flavor. This is in accordance with the reported ability of humans to discriminate between (+)- and (-)- nicotine enantiomers. To get a more detailed understanding of the molecular and cellular basis underlying the sensory perception of nicotine, we studied the activity of (+)- and (-)-nicotine on cultured murine trigeminal sensory neurons and on a range of heterologously expressed receptors. The human TRPA1 channel is activated by (-)-nicotine. In this work, we show that (+)-nicotine is also an activator of this channel. Pharmacological experiments using nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and transient receptor potential blockers revealed that trigeminal neurons express one or more unidentified receptors that are sensitive to (+)- and/or (-)-nicotine. Results also indicate that the presence of extracellular calcium ions is required to elicit trigeminal neuron responses to (+)- and (-)-nicotine. Results also show that both (+)-nicotine and (-)-nicotine can block 5-hydroxytryptamine type 3 (5-HT3) receptor-mediated responses in recombinant expression systems and in cultured trigeminal neurons expressing 5-HT3 receptors. Our investigations broaden the spectra of receptors that are targets for nicotine enantiomers and give new insights into the physiological role of nicotine.

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

    PubMed

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

    2000-08-04

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-04-01

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

  5. Neuronal Nicotinic Receptors as New Targets for Amphetamine-Induced Oxidative Damage and Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Pubill, David; Garcia-Ratés, Sara; Camarasa, Jordi; Escubedo, Elena

    2011-01-01

    Amphetamine derivatives such as methamphetamine (METH) and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, “ecstasy”) are widely abused drugs in a recreational context. This has led to concern because of the evidence that they are neurotoxic in animal models and cognitive impairments have been described in heavy abusers. The main targets of these drugs are plasmalemmal and vesicular monoamine transporters, leading to reverse transport and increased monoamine efflux to the synapse. As far as neurotoxicity is concerned, increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) production seems to be one of the main causes. Recent research has demonstrated that blockade of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) inhibits METH- and MDMA-induced ROS production in striatal synaptosomes which is dependent on calcium and on NO-synthase activation. Moreover, α7 nAChR antagonists (methyllycaconitine and memantine) attenuated in vivo the neurotoxicity induced by METH and MDMA, and memantine prevented the cognitive impairment induced by these drugs. Radioligand binding experiments demonstrated that both drugs have affinity to α7 and heteromeric nAChR, with MDMA showing lower Ki values, while fluorescence calcium experiments indicated that MDMA behaves as a partial agonist on α7 and as an antagonist on heteromeric nAChR. Sustained Ca increase led to calpain and caspase-3 activation. In addition, modulatory effects of MDMA on α7 and heteromeric nAChR populations have been found.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-28

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

  8. Nanomolar concentrations of nicotine and cotinine alter the development of cultured hippocampal neurons via non-acetylcholine receptor-mediated mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Audesirk, T; Cabell, L

    1999-08-01

    We investigated the effects of nicotine and its metabolic byproduct cotinine on survival, differentiation and intracellular Ca2+ levels of cultured E18 rat hippocampal neurons. We used a range of concentrations from 1 nM to 10 microM, most of which are within the likely range of human fetal exposure from maternal smoking. Nicotine did not influence neuron survival or neurite production. However, at all concentrations tested, nicotine significantly increased branching of both axons and dendrites, an effect which was not reversed by co-culturing with alpha-bungarotoxin, which blocks the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors that predominate in hippocampal cultures (Alkondon and Albuquerque, 1993; Barrantes et al., 1995b). Cotinine at 100 nM and 1 microM significantly reduced neuron survival and neurite production of surviving neurons, but did not significantly alter axon or dendrite branching. These membrane-permeable compounds may work synergistically in the developing embryo to impair the survival and differentiation of hippocampal neurons via intracellular mechanisms.

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

    PubMed

    Krivoshein, Arcadius V

    2016-03-16

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

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

    PubMed

    Christensen, Mark H; Kohlmeier, Kristi A

    2016-03-01

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

  11. The neuron-restrictive silencer element: A dual enhancer/silencer crucial for patterned expression of a nicotinic receptor gene in the brain

    PubMed Central

    Bessis, Alain; Champtiaux, Nicolas; Chatelin, Laurent; Changeux, Jean-Pierre

    1997-01-01

    The neuron-restrictive silencer element (NRSE) has been identified in several neuronal genes and confers neuron specificity by silencing transcription in nonneuronal cells. NRSE is present in the promoter of the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor β2-subunit gene that determines its neuron-specific expression in the nervous system. Using transgenic mice, we show that NRSE may either silence or enhance transcription depending on the cellular context within the nervous system. In vitro in neuronal cells, NRSE activates transcription of synthetic promoters when located downstream in the 5′ untranslated region, or at less than 50 bp upstream from the TATA box, but switches to a silencer when located further upstream. In contrast, in nonneuronal cells NRSE always functions as a silencer. Antisense RNA inhibition shows that the NRSE-binding protein REST contributes to the activation of transcription in neuronal cells. PMID:9159173

  12. Differential Roles of α6β2* and α4β2* Neuronal Nicotinic Receptors in Nicotine- and Cocaine-Conditioned Reward in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Sanjakdar, Sarah S; Maldoon, Pretal P; Marks, Michael J; Brunzell, Darlene H; Maskos, Uwe; McIntosh, J Michael; Bowers, M Scott; Damaj, M Imad

    2015-01-01

    Mesolimbic α6* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are thought to have an important role in nicotine behavioral effects. However, little is known about the role of the various α6*-nAChRs subtypes in the rewarding effects of nicotine. In this report, we investigated and compared the role of α6*-nAChRs subtypes and their neuro-anatomical locus in nicotine and cocaine reward-like effects in the conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm, using pharmacological antagonism of α6β2* nAChRs and genetic deletion of the α6 or α4 subunits in mice. We found that α6 KO mice exhibited a rightward shift in the nicotine dose–response curve compared with WT littermates but that α4 KO failed to show nicotine preference, suggesting that α6α4β2*-nAChRs are involved. Furthermore, α6β2* nAChRs in nucleus accumbens were found to have an important role in nicotine-conditioned reward as the intra-accumbal injection of the selective α6β2* α-conotoxin MII [H9A; L15A], blocked nicotine CPP. In contrast to nicotine, α6 KO failed to condition to cocaine, but cocaine CPP in the α4 KO was preserved. Intriguingly, α-conotoxin MII [H9A; L15A], blocked cocaine conditioning in α4 KO mice, implicating α6β2* nAChRs in cocaine reward. Importantly, these effects did not generalize as α6 KO showed both a conditioned place aversion to lithium chloride as well as CPP to palatable food. Finally, dopamine uptake was not different between the α6 KO or WT mice. These data illustrate that the subjective rewarding effects of both nicotine and cocaine may be mediated by mesolimbic α6β2* nAChRs and that antagonists of these receptor subtypes may exhibit therapeutic potential. PMID:25035086

  13. Nicotinic receptor activation in human cerebral cortical interneurons: a mechanism for inhibition and disinhibition of neuronal networks.

    PubMed

    Alkondon, M; Pereira, E F; Eisenberg, H M; Albuquerque, E X

    2000-01-01

    Cholinergic control of the activity of human cerebral cortical circuits has long been thought to be accounted for by the interaction of acetylcholine (ACh) with muscarinic receptors. Here we report the discovery of functional nicotinic receptors (nAChRs) in interneurons of the human cerebral cortex and discuss the physiological and clinical implications of these findings. The whole-cell mode of the patch-clamp technique was used to record responses triggered by U-tube application of the nonselective agonist ACh and of the alpha7-nAChR-selective agonist choline to interneurons visualized by means of infrared-assisted videomicroscopy in slices of the human cerebral cortex. Choline induced rapidly desensitizing whole-cell currents that, being sensitive to blockade by methyllycaconitine (MLA; 50 nM), were most likely subserved by an alpha7-like nAChR. In contrast, ACh evoked slowly decaying whole-cell currents that, being sensitive to blockade by dihydro-beta-erythroidine (DHbetaE; 10 microM), were most likely subserved by an alpha4beta2-like nAChR. Application of ACh (but not choline) to the slices also triggered GABAergic postsynaptic currents (PSCs). Evidence is provided that ACh-evoked PSCs are the result of activation of alpha4beta2-like nAChRs present in preterminal axon segments and/or in presynaptic terminals of interneurons. Thus, nAChRs can relay inhibitory and/or disinhibitory signals to pyramidal neurons and thereby modulate the activity of neuronal circuits in the human cerebral cortex. These mechanisms, which appear to be retained across species, can account for the involvement of nAChRs in cognitive functions and in certain neuropathological conditions.

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-05-16

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

  15. Nicotine Elicits Convulsive Seizures by Activating Amygdalar Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Iha, Higor A.; Kunisawa, Naofumi; Shimizu, Saki; Tokudome, Kentaro; Mukai, Takahiro; Kinboshi, Masato; Ikeda, Akio; Ito, Hidefumi; Serikawa, Tadao; Ohno, Yukihiro

    2017-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptors are implicated in the pathogenesis of epileptic disorders; however, the mechanisms of nACh receptors in seizure generation remain unknown. Here, we performed behavioral and immunohistochemical studies in mice and rats to clarify the mechanisms underlying nicotine-induced seizures. Treatment of animals with nicotine (1–4 mg/kg, i.p.) produced motor excitement in a dose-dependent manner and elicited convulsive seizures at 3 and 4 mg/kg. The nicotine-induced seizures were abolished by a subtype non-selective nACh antagonist, mecamylamine (MEC). An α7 nACh antagonist, methyllycaconitine, also significantly inhibited nicotine-induced seizures whereas an α4β2 nACh antagonist, dihydro-β-erythroidine, affected only weakly. Topographical analysis of Fos protein expression, a biological marker of neural excitation, revealed that a convulsive dose (4 mg/kg) of nicotine region-specifically activated neurons in the piriform cortex, amygdala, medial habenula, paratenial thalamus, anterior hypothalamus and solitary nucleus among 48 brain regions examined, and this was also suppressed by MEC. In addition, electric lesioning of the amygdala, but not the piriform cortex, medial habenula and thalamus, specifically inhibited nicotine-induced seizures. Furthermore, microinjection of nicotine (100 and 300 μg/side) into the amygdala elicited convulsive seizures in a dose-related manner. The present results suggest that nicotine elicits convulsive seizures by activating amygdalar neurons mainly via α7 nACh receptors. PMID:28232801

  16. The neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors alpha 4* and alpha 6* differentially modulate dopamine release in mouse striatal slices.

    PubMed

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

    2008-06-01

    Striatal dopamine (DA) plays a major role in the regulation of motor coordination and in the processing of salient information. We used voltammetry to monitor DA-release evoked by electrical stimulation in striatal slices, where interneurons continuously release acetylcholine. Use of the alpha6-selective antagonist alpha-conotoxin MII[E11A] and alpha4 knockout mice enabled identification of two populations of DA-ergic fibers. The first population had a low action potential threshold, and action potential-evoked DA-release from these fibers was modulated by alpha6. The second population had a higher action potential threshold, and only alpha4(non-alpha6) modulated action potential-evoked DA-release. Striatal DA-ergic neurons fire in both tonic and phasic patterns. When stimuli were applied in a train to mimic phasic firing, more DA-release was observed in alpha4 knockout versus wild-type mice. Furthermore, block of alpha4(non-alpha6), but not of alpha6, increased DA release evoked by a train. These results indicate that there are different classes of striatal DA-ergic fibers that express different subtypes of nicotinic receptors.

  17. Negative regulatory elements upstream of a novel exon of the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha 2 subunit gene.

    PubMed Central

    Bessis, A; Savatier, N; Devillers-Thiéry, A; Bejanin, S; Changeux, J P

    1993-01-01

    The expression of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha 2 subunit gene is highly restricted to the Spiriform lateralis nucleus of the Chick diencephalon. As a first step toward understanding the molecular mechanism underlying this regulation, we have investigated the structural and regulatory properties of the 5' sequence of this gene. A strategy based on the ligation of an oligonucleotide to the first strand of the cDNA (SLIC) followed by PCR amplification was used. A new exon was found approximately 3kb upstream from the first coding exon, and multiple transcription start sites of the gene were mapped. Analysis of the flanking region shows many consensus sequences for the binding of nuclear proteins, suggesting that the 1 kb flanking region contains at least a portion of the promoter of the gene. We have analysed the negative regulatory elements present within this region and found that a silencer region located between nucleotide -144 and +76 is active in fibroblasts as well as in neurons. This silencer is composed of six tandem repeat Oct-like motifs (CCCCATGCAAT), but does not bind any member of the Oct family. Moreover these motifs were found to act as a silencer only when they were tandemly repeated. When two, four or five motifs were deleted, the silencer activity of the motifs unexpectedly became an enhancer activity in all cells we have tested. Images PMID:8502560

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-12-06

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

  20. The therapeutic promise of positive allosteric modulation of nicotinic receptors

    PubMed Central

    Uteshev, Victor V.

    2014-01-01

    In the central nervous system, deficits in cholinergic neurotransmission correlate with decreased attention and cognitive impairment, while stimulation of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors improves attention, cognitive performance and neuronal resistance to injury as well as produces robust analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects. The rational basis for the therapeutic use of orthosteric agonists and positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) of nicotinic receptors arises from the finding that functional nicotinic receptors are ubiquitously expressed in neuronal and non-neuronal tissues including brain regions highly vulnerable to traumatic and ischemic types of injury (e.g., cortex and hippocampus). Moreover, functional nicotinic receptors do not vanish in age-, disease- and trauma-related neuropathologies, but their expression and/or activation levels decline in a subunit- and brain region-specific manner. Therefore, augmenting the endogenous cholinergic tone by nicotinic agents is possible and may offset neurological impairments associated with cholinergic hypofunction. Importantly, because neuronal damage elevates extracellular levels of choline (a selective agonist of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors) near the site of injury, α7-PAM-based treatments may augment pathology-activated α7-dependent auto-therapies where and when they are most needed (i.e., in the penumbra, post-injury). Thus, the nicotinic-PAM-based treatments are expected to be highly efficacious with fewer side effects as compared to a more indiscriminate action of exogenous orthosteric agonists. In this review, I will summarize the existing trends in therapeutic applications of nicotinic PAMs. PMID:24530419

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2002-06-25

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

  3. Nicotinic receptors, memory, and hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Kutlu, Munir Gunes; Gould, Thomas J

    2015-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) modulate the neurobiological processes underlying hippocampal learning and memory. In addition, nicotine's ability to desensitize and upregulate certain nAChRs may alter hippocampus-dependent memory processes. Numerous studies have examined the effects of nicotine on hippocampus-dependent learning, as well as the roles of low- and high-affinity nAChRs in mediating nicotine's effects on hippocampus-dependent learning and memory. These studies suggested that while acute nicotine generally acts as a cognitive enhancer for hippocampus-dependent learning, withdrawal from chronic nicotine results in deficits in hippocampus-dependent memory. Furthermore, these studies demonstrated that low- and high-affinity nAChRs functionally differ in their involvement in nicotine's effects on hippocampus-dependent learning. In the present chapter, we reviewed studies using systemic or local injections of acute or chronic nicotine, nAChR subunit agonists or antagonists; genetically modified mice; and molecular biological techniques to characterize the effects of nicotine on hippocampus-dependent learning.

  4. Cannabinoid receptor stimulation increases motivation for nicotine and nicotine seeking.

    PubMed

    Gamaleddin, Islam; Wertheim, Carrie; Zhu, Andy Z X; Coen, Kathleen M; Vemuri, Kiran; Makryannis, Alex; Goldberg, Steven R; Le Foll, Bernard

    2012-01-01

    The cannabinoid system appears to play a critical facilitative role in mediating the reinforcing effects of nicotine and relapse to nicotine-seeking behaviour in abstinent subjects based on the actions of cannabinoid (CB) receptor antagonists. However, the effects of CB receptor stimulation on nicotine self-administration and reinstatement have not been systematically studied. Here, we studied the effects of WIN 55,212-2, a CB1/2 agonist, on intravenous nicotine self-administration under fixed-ratio (FR) and progressive-ratio (PR) schedules of reinforcement in rats. The effects of WIN 55,212-2 on responding for food under similar schedules were also studied. In addition, the effects of WIN 55,212-2 on nicotine- and cue-induced reinstatement of nicotine seeking were also studied, as well as the effects of WIN 55,212-2 on nicotine discrimination. WIN 55,212-2 decreased nicotine self-administration under the FR schedule. However, co-administration of WIN 55,212-2 with nicotine decreased responding for food, which suggests that this effect was non-selective. In contrast, WIN 55,212-2 increased both nicotine self-administration and responding for food under the PR schedule, produced dose-dependent reinstatement of nicotine seeking, and enhanced the reinstatement effects of nicotine-associated cues. Some of these effects were reversed by the CB1 antagonist rimonabant, but not by the CB2 antagonist AM630. In the drug discrimination tests between saline and 0.4 mg/kg nicotine, WIN 55,212-2 produced no nicotine-like discriminative effects but significantly potentiated discriminative stimulus effects of nicotine at the low dose through a CB1-receptor-dependent mechanism. These findings indicate that cannabinoid CB1-receptor stimulation increases the reinforcing effects of nicotine and precipitates relapse to nicotine-seeking behaviour in abstinent subjects. Thus, modulating CB1-receptor signalling might have therapeutic value for treating nicotine dependence.

  5. Nicotinic activation of laterodorsal tegmental neurons: implications for addiction to nicotine.

    PubMed

    Ishibashi, Masaru; Leonard, Christopher S; Kohlmeier, Kristi A

    2009-11-01

    Identifying the neurological mechanisms underlying nicotine reinforcement is a healthcare imperative, if society is to effectively combat tobacco addiction. The majority of studies of the neurobiology of addiction have focused on dopamine (DA)-containing neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA). However, recent data suggest that neurons of the laterodorsal tegmental (LDT) nucleus, which sends cholinergic, GABAergic, and glutamatergic-containing projections to DA-containing neurons of the VTA, are critical to gating normal functioning of this nucleus. The actions of nicotine on LDT neurons are unknown. We addressed this issue by examining the effects of nicotine on identified cholinergic and non-cholinergic LDT neurons using whole-cell patch clamp and Ca(2+)-imaging methods in brain slices from mice (P12-P45). Nicotine applied by puffer pipette or bath superfusion elicited membrane depolarization that often induced firing and TTX-resistant inward currents. Nicotine also enhanced sensitivity to injected current; and, baseline changes in intracellular calcium were elicited in the dendrites of some cholinergic LDT cells. In addition, activity-dependent calcium transients were increased, suggesting that nicotine exposure sufficient to induce firing may lead to enhancement of levels of intracellular calcium. Nicotine also had strong actions on glutamate and GABA-releasing presynaptic terminals, as it greatly increased the frequency of miniature EPSCs and IPSCs to both cholinergic and non-cholinergic neurons. Utilization of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) subunit antagonists revealed that presynaptic, inhibitory terminals on cholinergic neurons were activated by receptors containing alpha 7, beta2, and non-alpha 7 subunits, whereas, presynaptic glutamatergic terminals were activated by nAChRs that comprised non-alpha 7 subunits. We also found that direct nicotinic actions on cholinergic LDT neurons were mediated by receptors containing alpha 7, beta2, and non

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

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1989-09-30

    of chicken neurona .4receptor subunits. Sequences of al and a2 are from Net .Ot al. -l Sequences of a3 and a4 were determintl from clones described...Sucrose gradient analysis of neurona & nicotinic receptors was conducted as follows. Chicken ind rat brain receptors were extracted from crude

  7. Effects of fatty acid amide hydrolase inhibition on neuronal responses to nicotine, cocaine and morphine in the nucleus accumbens shell and ventral tegmental area: involvement of PPAR-alpha nuclear receptors.

    PubMed

    Luchicchi, Antonio; Lecca, Salvatore; Carta, Stefano; Pillolla, Giuliano; Muntoni, Anna L; Yasar, Sevil; Goldberg, Steven R; Pistis, Marco

    2010-07-01

    The endocannabinoid system regulates neurotransmission in brain regions relevant to neurobiological and behavioral actions of addicting drugs. We recently demonstrated that inhibition by URB597 of fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), the main enzyme that degrades the endogenous cannabinoid N-acylethanolamine (NAE) anandamide and the endogenous non-cannabinoid NAEs oleoylethanolamide and palmitoylethanolamide, blocks nicotine-induced excitation of ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons and DA release in the shell of the nucleus accumbens (ShNAc), as well as nicotine-induced drug self-administration, conditioned place preference and relapse in rats. Here, we studied whether effects of FAAH inhibition on nicotine-induced changes in activity of VTA DA neurons were specific for nicotine or extended to two drugs of abuse acting through different mechanisms, cocaine and morphine. We also evaluated whether FAAH inhibition affects nicotine-, cocaine- or morphine-induced actions in the ShNAc. Experiments involved single-unit electrophysiological recordings from DA neurons in the VTA and medium spiny neurons in the ShNAc in anesthetized rats. We found that URB597 blocked effects of nicotine and cocaine in the ShNAc through activation of both surface cannabinoid CB1-receptors and alpha-type peroxisome proliferator-activated nuclear receptor. URB597 did not alter the effects of either cocaine or morphine on VTA DA neurons. These results show that the blockade of nicotine-induced excitation of VTA DA neurons, which we previously described, is selective for nicotine and indicate novel mechanisms recruited to regulate the effects of addicting drugs within the ShNAc of the brain reward system.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  9. Nicotine and Nicotinic Receptor Drugs: Potential for Parkinson's Disease and Drug-Induced Movement Disorders.

    PubMed

    Quik, Maryka; Bordia, Tanuja; Zhang, Danhui; Perez, Xiomara A

    2015-01-01

    Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder associated with tremor, rigidity, and bradykinesia, as well as nonmotor symptoms including autonomic impairments, olfactory dysfunction, sleep disturbances, depression, and dementia. Although the major neurological deficit is a loss of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons, multiple neurotransmitters systems are compromised in Parkinson's disease. Consistent with this observation, dopamine replacement therapy dramatically improves Parkinson's disease motor symptoms. Additionally, drugs targeting the serotonergic, glutamatergic, adenosine, and other neurotransmitter systems may be beneficial. Recent evidence also indicates that nicotinic cholinergic drugs may be useful for the management of Parkinson's disease. This possibility initially arose from the results of epidemiological studies, which showed that smoking was associated with a decreased incidence of Parkinson's disease, an effect mediated in part by the nicotine in smoke. Further evidence for this idea stemmed from preclinical studies which showed that nicotine administration reduced nigrostriatal damage in parkinsonian rodents and monkeys. In addition to a potential neuroprotective role, emerging work indicates that nicotinic receptor drugs improve the abnormal involuntary movements or dyskinesias that arise as a side effect of l-dopa treatment, the gold standard therapy for Parkinson's disease. Both nicotine and nicotinic receptor drugs reduced l-dopa-induced dyskinesias by over 50% in parkinsonian rodent and monkey models. Notably, nicotine also attenuated the abnormal involuntary movements or tardive dyskinesias that arise with antipsychotic treatment. These observations, coupled with reports that nicotinic receptor drugs have procognitive and antidepressant effects, suggest that central nervous system (CNS) nicotinic receptors may represent useful targets for the treatment of movement disorders.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  12. Binding of HIV-1 gp120 to the nicotinic receptor.

    PubMed

    Bracci, L; Lozzi, L; Rustici, M; Neri, P

    1992-10-19

    We previously described a significant sequence homology between HIV-1 gp120 and the functional sites responsible for the specific binding of snake curare-mimetic neurotoxins and rabies virus glycoprotein to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Here we report findings about the existence of a mechanism of functional molecular mimicry which could enable the binding of HIV-1 gp120 to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in muscle cells and neurons.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  15. Reexposure to nicotine during withdrawal increases the pacemaking activity of cholinergic habenular neurons

    PubMed Central

    Görlich, Andreas; Antolin-Fontes, Beatriz; Ables, Jessica L.; Frahm, Silke; Ślimak, Marta A.; Dougherty, Joseph D.; Ibañez-Tallon, Inés

    2013-01-01

    The discovery of genetic variants in the cholinergic receptor nicotinic CHRNA5-CHRNA3-CHRNB4 gene cluster associated with heavy smoking and higher relapse risk has led to the identification of the midbrain habenula–interpeduncular axis as a critical relay circuit in the control of nicotine dependence. Although clear roles for α3, β4, and α5 receptors in nicotine aversion and withdrawal have been established, the cellular and molecular mechanisms that participate in signaling nicotine use and contribute to relapse have not been identified. Here, using translating ribosome affinity purification (TRAP) profiling, electrophysiology, and behavior, we demonstrate that cholinergic neurons, but not peptidergic neurons, of the medial habenula (MHb) display spontaneous tonic firing of 2–10 Hz generated by hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) pacemaker channels and that infusion of the HCN pacemaker antagonist ZD7288 in the habenula precipitates somatic and affective signs of withdrawal. Further, we show that a strong, α3β4-dependent increase in firing frequency is observed in these pacemaker neurons upon acute exposure to nicotine. No change in the basal or nicotine-induced firing was observed in cholinergic MHb neurons from mice chronically treated with nicotine. We observe, however, that, during withdrawal, reexposure to nicotine doubles the frequency of pacemaking activity in these neurons. These findings demonstrate that the pacemaking mechanism of cholinergic MHb neurons controls withdrawal, suggesting that the heightened nicotine sensitivity of these neurons during withdrawal may contribute to smoking relapse. PMID:24082085

  16. Evidence that nicotinic alpha(7) receptors are not involved in the hyperlocomotor and rewarding effects of nicotine.

    PubMed

    Grottick, A J; Trube, G; Corrigall, W A; Huwyler, J; Malherbe, P; Wyler, R; Higgins, G A

    2000-09-01

    Neuronal nicotinic receptors are comprised of combinations of alpha(2-9) and beta(2-4) subunits arranged to form a pentameric receptor. Currently, the principal central nervous system (CNS) subtypes are believed to be alpha(4)beta(2) and a homomeric alpha(7) receptor, although other combinations almost certainly exist. The identity of the nicotinic receptor subtype(s) involved in the rewarding effects of nicotine are unknown. In the present study, using some recently described subtype selective nicotinic agonists and antagonists, we investigated the role of the alpha(7) nicotinic receptor in the mediation of nicotine-induced hyperactivity and self-administration in rats. The alpha(7) receptor agonists AR-R 17779 and DMAC failed to stimulate locomotor activity in both nicotine-nontolerant and -sensitized rats. In contrast, nicotine and the putative alpha(4)beta(2) subtype selective agonist SIB1765F increased activity in both experimental conditions. In nicotine-sensitized rats, the high affinity (including the alpha(4)beta(2) subtype) nicotinic antagonist dihydro-beta-erythroidine (DHbetaE), but not the selective alpha(7) antagonist methyllycaconitine (MLA), antagonized a nicotine-induced hyperactivity. Similarly, DHbetaE, but not MLA, pretreatment reduced nicotine self-administration. Electrophysiology experiments using Xenopus oocytes expressing the human alpha(7) receptor confirmed AR-R 17779 and DMAC to be potent agonists at this site, and further studies demonstrated the ability of systemically administered AR-R 17779 to penetrate into the CNS. Taken together, these results indicate a negligible role of alpha(7) receptors in nicotine-induced hyperlocomotion and reward in the rat, and support the view for an involvement of a member from the high-affinity nicotinic receptor subclass, possibly alpha(4)beta(2). Issues such as drug potency, CNS penetration, and desensitization of the alpha(7) receptor are discussed.

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

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-03-16

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

  18. Nitrosamines as nicotinic receptor ligands

    PubMed Central

    Schuller, Hildegard M.

    2007-01-01

    Nitrosamines are carcinogens formed in the mammalian organism from amine precursors contained in food, beverages, cosmetics and drugs. The potent carcinogen, NNK, and the weaker carcinogen, NNN, are nitrosamines formed from nicotine. Metabolites of the nitrosamines react with DNA to form adducts responsible for genotoxic effects. We have identified NNK as a high affinity agonist for the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) whereas NNN bound with high affinity to epibatidine-sensitive nAChRs. Diethylnitrosamine (DEN) bound to both receptors but with lower affinity. High levels of the α7nAChR were expressed in human small cell lung cancer (SCLC) cell lines and in hamster pulmonary neuroendocrine cells (PNECs), which serve as a model for the cell of origin of human SCLC. Exposure of SCLC or PNECs to NNK or nicotine increased expression of the a7nAChR and caused influx of Ca2+, activation of PKC, Raf-1, ERK1/2, and c-myc, resulting in the stimulation of cell proliferation. Signaling via the α7nAChR was enhanced when cells were maintained in an environment of 10–15% CO2 similar to that in the diseased lung. Hamsters with hyperoxia-induced pulmonary fibrosis developed neuroendocrine lung carcinomas similar to human SCLC when treated with NNK, DEN, or nicotine. The development of the NNK-induced tumors was prevented by green tea or theophylline. The beta-adrenergic receptor agonist, isoproterenol or theophylline blocked NNK-induced cell proliferation in vitro. NNK and nicotine-induced hyperactivity of the α7nAChR/RAF/ERK1/2 pathway thus appears to play a crucial role in the development of SCLC in smokers and could be targeted for cancer prevention. PMID:17459420

  19. Nitrosamines as nicotinic receptor ligands.

    PubMed

    Schuller, Hildegard M

    2007-05-30

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

  20. Differential roles for disulfide bonds in the structural integrity and biological activity of kappa-Bungarotoxin, a neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist.

    PubMed

    Grant, G A; Luetje, C W; Summers, R; Xu, X L

    1998-09-01

    kappa-Bungarotoxin, a kappa-neurotoxin derived from the venom of the banded Krait, Bungarus multicinctus, is a homodimeric protein composed of subunits of 66 amino acid residues containing five disulfide bonds. kappa-Bungarotoxin is a potent, selective, and slowly reversible antagonist of alpha3 beta2 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. kappa-Bungarotoxin is structurally related to the alpha-neurotoxins, such as alpha-bungarotoxin derived from the same snake, which are monomeric in solution and which effectively antagonize muscle type receptors (alpha1 beta1 gamma delta) and the homopentameric neuronal type receptors (alpha7, alpha8, and alpha9). Like the kappa-neurotoxins, the long alpha-neurotoxins contain the same five conserved disulfide bonds, while the short alpha-neurotoxins only contain four of the five. Systematic removal of single disulfide bonds in kappa-bungarotoxin by site-specific mutagenesis reveals a differential role for each of the disulfide bonds. Removal of either of the two disulfides connecting elements of the carboxy terminal loop of this toxin (Cys 46-Cys 58 and Cys 59-Cys 64) interferes with the ability of the toxin to fold. In contrast, removal of each of the other three disulfides does not interfere with the general folding of the toxin and yields molecules with biological activity. In fact, when either C3-C21 or C14-C42 are removed individually, no loss in biological activity is seen. However, removing both produces a polypeptide chain which fails to fold properly. Removal of the C27-C31 disulfide only reduces the activity of the toxin 46.6-fold. This disulfide may play a role in specific interaction of the toxin with specific neuronal receptors.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1992-01-01

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

  2. Upregulation of surface alpha4beta2 nicotinic receptors is initiated by receptor desensitization after chronic exposure to nicotine.

    PubMed

    Fenster, C P; Whitworth, T L; Sheffield, E B; Quick, M W; Lester, R A

    1999-06-15

    It is hypothesized that desensitization of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) induced by chronic exposure to nicotine initiates upregulation of nAChR number. To test this hypothesis directly, oocytes expressing alpha4beta2 receptors were chronically incubated (24-48 hr) in nicotine, and the resulting changes in specific [3H]nicotine binding to surface receptors on intact oocytes were compared with functional receptor desensitization. Four lines of evidence strongly support the hypothesis. (1) The half-maximal nicotine concentration necessary to produce desensitization (9.7 nM) was the same as that needed to induce upregulation (9.9 nM). (2) The concentration of [3H]nicotine for half-maximal binding to surface nAChRs on intact oocytes was also similar (11.1 nM), as predicted from cyclical desensitization models. (3) Functional desensitization of alpha3beta4 receptors required 10-fold higher nicotine concentrations, and this was mirrored by a 10-fold shift in concentrations necessary for upregulation. (4) Mutant alpha4beta2 receptors that do not recover fully from desensitization, but not wild-type channels, were upregulated after acute (1 hr) applications of nicotine. Interestingly, the nicotine concentration required for half-maximal binding of alpha4beta2 receptors in total cell membrane homogenates was 20-fold lower than that measured for surface nAChRs in intact oocytes. These data suggest that cell homogenate binding assays may not accurately reflect the in vivo desensitization affinity of surface nAChRs and may account for some of the previously reported differences in the efficacy of nicotine for inducing nAChR desensitization and upregulation.

  3. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Signaling in Tumor Growth and Metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Sandeep; Pillai, Smitha; Chellappan, Srikumar

    2011-01-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2012-01-06

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-07

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

  6. The E Loop of the Transmitter Binding Site Is a Key Determinant of the Modulatory Effects of Physostigmine on Neuronal Nicotinic α4β2 Receptors.

    PubMed

    Jin, Xiaochun; McCollum, Megan M; Germann, Allison L; Akk, Gustav; Steinbach, Joe Henry

    2017-02-01

    Physostigmine is a well known inhibitor of acetylcholinesterase, which can also activate, potentiate, and inhibit acetylcholine receptors, including neuronal nicotinic receptors comprising α4 and β2 subunits. We have found that the two stoichiometric forms of this receptor differ in the effects of physostigmine. The form containing three copies of α4 and two of β2 was potentiated at low concentrations of acetylcholine chloride (ACh) and physostigmine, whereas the form containing two copies of α4 and three of β2 was inhibited. Chimeric constructs of subunits indicated that the presence of inhibition or potentiation depended on the source of the extracellular ligand binding domain of the subunit. Further sets of chimeric constructs demonstrated that a portion of the ACh binding domain, the E loop, is a key determinant. Transferring the E loop from the β2 subunit to the α4 subunit resulted in strong inhibition, whereas the reciprocal transfer reduced inhibition. To control the number and position of the incorporated chimeric subunits, we expressed chimeric constructs with subunit dimers. Surprisingly, incorporation of a subunit with an altered E loop had similar effects whether it contributed either to an intersubunit interface containing a canonical ACh binding site or to an alternative interface. The observation that the α4 E loop is involved suggests that physostigmine interacts with regions of subunits that contribute to the ACh binding site, whereas the lack of interface specificity indicates that interaction with a particular ACh binding site is not the critical factor.

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

    PubMed

    Hurst, Raymond; Rollema, Hans; Bertrand, Daniel

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-01

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

  9. Chronic intermittent nicotine treatment dose-dependently alters serotonergic neurons response to citalopram in the rat.

    PubMed

    Touiki, Khalid; Rat, Pascal; Arib, Ouafa; Molimard, Robert; Chait, Abderrahman; de Beaurepaire, Renaud

    2008-05-01

    Acetylcholine nicotinic systems and serotonergic systems are known to interact. In rodents, acute and chronic nicotine treatments have consequences on several aspects of the activity of dorsal raphe serotonin (DRN 5-HT) neurons. One hypothesis is that states of functioning of DRN 5-HT neurons (firing rate and sensitivity) vary as a function of nicotine dose and mode of administration during chronic nicotine treatment. In the present study, the firing rate and sensitivity of DRN 5-HT neurons were investigated using single (0.5 and 1 mg/kg) or multiple (3 injections of 0.7 mg/kg) daily injections of nicotine over 10 days. The sensitivity of neurons was tested by the cumulative dose of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor citalopram necessary to inhibit their firing. The activity of neurons was tested during treatment, and then 24 and 48 h after nicotine withdrawal. The results show that, on day 10, DRN 5-HT neurons were desensitized (reduced response to citalopram) after chronic single daily injection treatments with the high dose of nicotine (1 mg/kg), while their sensitivity remained unaltered after single daily injections with the low dose (0.5 mg/kg), and after the multiple daily injection paradigm. None of the treatments altered the firing rate of DRN 5-HT neurons. The dose-dependent and time-dependent alterations of serotonergic neurons sensitivity after chronic nicotine treatments are likely the consequences of long-term adaptations of nicotinic receptors. The desensitization of DRN 5-HT neurons after chronic single daily injections of 1 mg/kg of nicotine suggests an antidepressant-like effect of chronic nicotine.

  10. Blocking actions of alkylene-tethered bis-neonicotinoids on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed by terminal abdominal ganglion neurons of Periplaneta americana.

    PubMed

    Ihara, Makoto; Hirata, Koichi; Ishida, Chiharu; Kagabu, Shinzo; Matsuda, Kazuhiko

    2007-10-02

    Neonicotinoid insecticides target nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), which, in both vertebrates and invertebrates, mediate fast-acting synaptic neurotransmission in the nervous system. Recently, Kagabu et al. synthesized bis-neonicotinoids. The neural activities of bis-neonicotinoids have been evaluated on the central nerve cord of American cockroaches. However, the action of bis-neonicotinoids on nAChRs expressed by dissociated insect neurons has not yet been studied. Thus, the actions of several alkylene-tethered bis-neonicotinoids on the terminal abdominal ganglion neurons of the American cockroach, Periplaneta americana, were investigated using whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology. All of the ligands tested did not induce membrane currents, but reduced the responses to ACh when bath applied prior to co-application with ACh. Of the compounds tested, HK-13, which possesses two imidacloprid units linked with a hexamethylene bridge, had the highest antagonist potency. The antagonist action was reduced, not only by elongating, but also by shortening the linker.

  11. A potentially novel nicotinic receptor in Aplysia neuroendocrine cells.

    PubMed

    White, Sean H; Carter, Christopher J; Magoski, Neil S

    2014-07-15

    Nicotinic receptors form a diverse group of ligand-gated ionotropic receptors with roles in both synaptic transmission and the control of excitability. In the bag cell neurons of Aplysia, acetylcholine activates an ionotropic receptor, which passes inward current to produce a long-lasting afterdischarge and hormone release, leading to reproduction. While testing the agonist profile of the cholinergic response, we observed a second current that appeared to be gated only by nicotine and not acetylcholine. The peak nicotine-evoked current was markedly smaller in magnitude than the acetylcholine-induced current, cooperative (Hill value of 2.7), had an EC50 near 500 μM, readily recovered from desensitization, showed Ca(2+) permeability, and was blocked by mecamylamine, dihydro-β-erythroidine, or strychnine, but not by α-conotoxin ImI, methyllycaconitine, or hexamethonium. Aplysia transcriptome analysis followed by PCR yielded 20 full-length potential nicotinic receptor subunits. Sixteen of these were predicted to be cation selective, and real-time PCR suggested that 15 of the 16 subunits were expressed to varying degrees in the bag cell neurons. The acetylcholine-induced current, but not the nicotine current, was reduced by double-strand RNA treatment targeted to both subunits ApAChR-C and -E. Conversely, the nicotine-evoked current, but not the acetylcholine current, was lessened by targeting both subunits ApAChR-H and -P. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report suggesting that a nicotinic receptor is not gated by acetylcholine. Separate receptors may serve as a means to differentially trigger plasticity or safeguard propagation by assuring that only acetylcholine, the endogenous agonist, initiates large enough responses to trigger reproduction.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  13. Menthol Enhances Nicotine Reward-Related Behavior by Potentiating Nicotine-Induced Changes in nAChR Function, nAChR Upregulation, and DA Neuron Excitability.

    PubMed

    Henderson, Brandon J; Wall, Teagan R; Henley, Beverley M; Kim, Charlene H; McKinney, Sheri; Lester, Henry A

    2017-04-12

    Understanding why the quit rate among smokers of menthol cigarettes is lower than non-menthol smokers requires identifying the neurons that are altered by nicotine, menthol, and acetylcholine. Dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) mediate the positive reinforcing effects of nicotine. Using mouse models, we show that menthol enhances nicotine-induced changes in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed on midbrain DA neurons. Menthol plus nicotine upregulates nAChR number and function on midbrain DA neurons more than nicotine alone. Menthol also enhances nicotine-induced changes in DA neuron excitability. In a conditioned place preference (CPP) assay, we observed that menthol plus nicotine produces greater reward-related behavior than nicotine alone. Our results connect changes in midbrain DA neurons to menthol-induced enhancements of nicotine reward-related behavior and may help explain how smokers of menthol cigarettes exhibit reduced cessation rates.Neuropsychopharmacology accepted article preview online, 12 April 2017. doi:10.1038/npp.2017.72.

  14. Brain region specific modulation of ethanol-induced depression of GABAergic neurons in the brain reward system by the nicotine receptor antagonist mecamylamine.

    PubMed

    Adermark, Louise; Söderpalm, Bo; Burkhardt, John M

    2014-08-01

    The mechanisms underlying ethanol-induced activation of the mesolimbic dopamine system are not fully understood, but increased extracellular dopamine in the nucleus accumbens (nAc) has been shown to involve nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Basal activity of dopaminergic neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) is under the influence of GABAergic neurotransmission, and the aim of this study was to characterize the involvement of nAChRs in mediating acute ethanol effects on GABAergic activity in subregions of the brain reward system. Multi-electrode in vivo recordings were made in the VTA and nAc of awake and behaving C57BL6/J mice receiving intraperitoneal injections of saline or ethanol (2.0 g/kg), combined with, or without, pre-injection of the non-competitive nAChR antagonist mecamylamine (1.0 mg/kg). Ethanol significantly decreased the activity of quinpirole-insensitive slow-spiking and fast-spiking units in both the VTA and the nAc as compared to saline injection. Pre-treatment with mecamylamine inhibited the rate-inhibiting properties of ethanol in the VTA, but not in the nAc. The data presented here show that ethanol depresses the activity of quinpirole-insensitive, putative GABAergic neurons, in the mesolimbic dopamine system of mice, and that nAChRs contribute to this modulation. This finding, taken together with previous microdialysis studies, supports an involvement of GABAergic neurons and nAChRs in ethanol's interaction with the mesolimbic dopamine system.

  15. The alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-selective antagonist, methyllycaconitine, partially protects against beta-amyloid1-42 toxicity in primary neuron-enriched cultures.

    PubMed

    Martin, Shelley E; de Fiebre, Nancy Ellen C; de Fiebre, Christopher M

    2004-10-01

    Studies have suggested that the neuroprotective actions of alpha7 nicotinic agonists arise from activation of receptors and not from the extensive desensitization which rapidly follows activation. Here, we report that the alpha7-selective nicotinic antagonist, methyllycaconitine (MLA), protects against beta-amyloid-induced neurotoxicity; whereas the alpha4beta2-selective antagonist, dihydro-beta-erythroidine, does not. These findings suggest that neuroprotective actions of alpha7-acting agents arise from receptor inhibition/desensitization and that alpha7 antagonists may be useful neuroprotective agents.

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-12-01

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

  17. Modulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by strychnine

    PubMed Central

    García-Colunga, Jesús; Miledi, Ricardo

    1999-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-12-15

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-03-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Taillebois, Emiliane; Thany, Steeve H

    2016-09-01

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

  1. Neuroprotection of midbrain dopamine neurons by nicotine is gated by cytoplasmic Ca2+.

    PubMed

    Toulorge, Damien; Guerreiro, Serge; Hild, Audrey; Maskos, Uwe; Hirsch, Etienne C; Michel, Patrick P

    2011-08-01

    Epidemiological and experimental evidence indicates that nicotine is protective for Parkinson disease vulnerable dopamine neurons, but the underlying mechanism of this effect remains only partly characterized. To address this question, we established rat midbrain cultures maintained in experimental conditions that favor the selective and spontaneous loss of dopamine neurons. We report here that nicotine afforded neuroprotection to dopamine neurons (EC(50)=0.32 μM) but only in a situation where cytosolic Ca(2+) (Ca(2+)(cyt)) was slightly and chronically elevated above control levels by concurrent depolarizing treatments. By a pharmacological approach, we demonstrated that the rise in Ca(2+)(cyt) was necessary to sensitize dopamine neurons to the action of nicotine through a mechanism involving α-bungarotoxin-sensitive (presumably α7) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and secondarily T-type voltage-gated calcium channels. Confirming the role played by α7 nAChRs in this effect, nicotine had no protective action in midbrain cultures prepared from genetically engineered mice lacking this receptor subtype. Signaling studies revealed that Ca(2+)(cyt) elevations evoked by nicotine and concomitant depolarizing treatments served to activate a survival pathway involving the calcium effector protein calmodulin and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase. Collectively, our data support the idea that the protective action of nicotine for dopamine neurons is activity-dependent and gated by Ca(2+)(cyt).

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

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

  3. Nicotine binding to brain receptors requires a strong cation-pi interaction.

    PubMed

    Xiu, Xinan; Puskar, Nyssa L; Shanata, Jai A P; Lester, Henry A; Dougherty, Dennis A

    2009-03-26

    Nicotine addiction begins with high-affinity binding of nicotine to acetylcholine (ACh) receptors in the brain. The end result is over 4,000,000 smoking-related deaths annually worldwide and the largest source of preventable mortality in developed countries. Stress reduction, pleasure, improved cognition and other central nervous system effects are strongly associated with smoking. However, if nicotine activated ACh receptors found in muscle as potently as it does brain ACh receptors, smoking would cause intolerable and perhaps fatal muscle contractions. Despite extensive pharmacological, functional and structural studies of ACh receptors, the basis for the differential action of nicotine on brain compared with muscle ACh receptors has not been determined. Here we show that at the alpha4beta2 brain receptors thought to underlie nicotine addiction, the high affinity for nicotine is the result of a strong cation-pi interaction to a specific aromatic amino acid of the receptor, TrpB. In contrast, the low affinity for nicotine at the muscle-type ACh receptor is largely due to the fact that this key interaction is absent, even though the immediate binding site residues, including the key amino acid TrpB, are identical in the brain and muscle receptors. At the same time a hydrogen bond from nicotine to the backbone carbonyl of TrpB is enhanced in the neuronal receptor relative to the muscle type. A point mutation near TrpB that differentiates alpha4beta2 and muscle-type receptors seems to influence the shape of the binding site, allowing nicotine to interact more strongly with TrpB in the neuronal receptor. ACh receptors are established therapeutic targets for Alzheimer's disease, schizophrenia, Parkinson's disease, smoking cessation, pain, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, epilepsy, autism and depression. Along with solving a chemical mystery in nicotine addiction, our results provide guidance for efforts to develop drugs that target specific types of nicotinic

  4. Ryanodine receptor-2 upregulation and nicotine-mediated plasticity.

    PubMed

    Ziviani, Elena; Lippi, Giordano; Bano, Daniele; Munarriz, Eliana; Guiducci, Stefania; Zoli, Michele; Young, Kenneth W; Nicotera, Pierluigi

    2011-01-05

    Nicotine, the major psychoactive component of cigarette smoke, modulates neuronal activity to produce Ca2+-dependent changes in gene transcription. However, the downstream targets that underlie the long-term effects of nicotine on neuronal function, and hence behaviour, remain to be elucidated. Here, we demonstrate that nicotine administration to mice upregulates levels of the type 2 ryanodine receptor (RyR2), a Ca2+-release channel present on the endoplasmic reticulum, in a number of brain areas associated with cognition and addiction, notably the cortex and ventral midbrain. Nicotine-mediated RyR2 upregulation was driven by CREB, and caused a long-lasting reinforcement of Ca2+ signalling via the process of Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release. RyR2 upregulation was itself required for long-term phosphorylation of CREB in a positive-feedback signalling loop. We further demonstrate that inhibition of RyR-activation in vivo abolishes sensitization to nicotine-induced habituated locomotion, a well-characterised model for onset of drug dependence. Our findings, therefore, indicate that gene-dependent reprogramming of Ca2+ signalling is involved in nicotine-induced behavioural changes.

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

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Xiaochun; Steinbach, Joe Henry

    2015-01-01

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

  6. Central nicotinic receptors: structure, function, ligands, and therapeutic potential.

    PubMed

    Romanelli, M Novella; Gratteri, Paola; Guandalini, Luca; Martini, Elisabetta; Bonaccini, Claudia; Gualtieri, Fulvio

    2007-06-01

    The growing interest in nicotinic receptors, because of their wide expression in neuronal and non-neuronal tissues and their involvement in several important CNS pathologies, has stimulated the synthesis of a high number of ligands able to modulate their function. These membrane proteins appear to be highly heterogeneous, and still only incomplete information is available on their structure, subunit composition, and stoichiometry. This is due to the lack of selective ligands to study the role of nAChR under physiological or pathological conditions; so far, only compounds showing selectivity between alpha4beta2 and alpha7 receptors have been obtained. The nicotinic receptor ligands have been designed starting from lead compounds from natural sources such as nicotine, cytisine, or epibatidine, and, more recently, through the high-throughput screening of chemical libraries. This review focuses on the structure of the new agonists, antagonists, and allosteric ligands of nicotinic receptors, it highlights the current knowledge on the binding site models as a molecular modeling approach to design new compounds, and it discusses the nAChR modulators which have entered clinical trials.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    1993-01-01

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

  8. Adolescent nicotine exposure transiently increases high-affinity nicotinic receptors and modulates inhibitory synaptic transmission in rat medial prefrontal cortex

    PubMed Central

    Counotte, Danielle S.; Goriounova, Natalia A.; Moretti, Milena; Smoluch, Marek T.; Irth, Hubertus; Clementi, Francesco; Schoffelmeer, Anton N. M.; Mansvelder, Huibert D.; Smit, August B.; Gotti, Cecilia; Spijker, Sabine

    2013-01-01

    Adolescence is a critical developmental period during which most adult smokers initiate their habit. Adolescents are more vulnerable than adults to nicotine’s long-term effects on addictive and cognitive behavior. We investigated whether adolescent nicotine exposure in rats modifies expression of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) in the short and/or long term, and whether this has functional consequences. Using receptor binding studies followed by immunoprecipitation of nAChR subunits, we showed that adolescent nicotine exposure, as compared with saline, caused an increase in mPFC nAChRs containing α4 or β2 subunits (24 and 18%, respectively) 24 h after the last injection. Nicotine exposure in adulthood had no such effect. This increase was transient and was not observed 5 wk following either adolescent or adult nicotine exposure. In line with increased nAChRs expression 1 d after adolescent nicotine exposure, we observed a 34% increase in amplitude of nicotine-induced spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents in layer II/III mPFC pyramidal neurons. These effects were transient and specific, and observed only acutely after adolescent nicotine exposure, but not after 5 wk, and no changes were observed in adult-exposed animals. The acute nicotine-induced increase in α4β2-containing receptors in adolescents interferes with the normal developmental decrease (37%) of these receptors from early adolescence (postnatal day 34) to adulthood (postnatal day 104) in the mPFC. Together, this suggests that these receptors play a role in mediating the acute rewarding effects of nicotine and may underlie the increased sensitivity of adolescents to nicotine. PMID:22308197

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

    PubMed Central

    Marinou, Martha; Tzartos, Socrates J

    2003-01-01

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

  10. Serotonin receptors as potential targets for modulation of nicotine use and dependence.

    PubMed

    Fletcher, Paul J; Lê, Anh Dzung; Higgins, Guy A

    2008-01-01

    Nicotine use carries considerable health risks and plays a major role in a variety of diseases. Current pharmacological treatments to aid in smoking cessation include nicotine-replacement therapy and non-nicotinic strategies such as bupropion and varenicline. While these treatments benefit some individuals there is still a need for better and more effective treatment strategies. Nicotine is the major psychoactive substance in tobacco. Some behavioural effects of nicotine, including its reinforcing efficacy result in part from activation of mesolimbic dopamine neurons. Modulation of dopamine function is one potential treatment strategy that could treat nicotine dependence. Serotonergic neurons modulate the functioning of dopamine neurons in a complex fashion. Much of this complexity arises from the fact that serotonin (5-HT) exerts its effects through multiple receptor subtypes, some of which even act in apparent functional opposition to each other. This article reviews evidence, primarily from animal experiments, using behavioural procedures relevant to nicotine use on the potential for 5-HT receptors as targets for treating nicotine dependence. The 5-HT(1A, 2A, 2C, 3, 4, 6) receptor subtypes have received most experimental attention, with the 5-HT(1A) and 5-HT(2C) receptors being the best studied. Several studies have now shown that 5-HT(1A) receptor antagonists alleviate some of the behavioural signs induced by nicotine withdrawal. Electrophysiological and neurochemical studies show that stimulation of 5-HT(2C) receptors reduces the function of the mesolimbic dopamine pathway. 5-HT(2C) receptor agonists block the stimulatory action of nicotine on midbrain dopamine function. They also reduce several behavioural effects of nicotine including its discriminative stimulus properties and reinforcing effects. Although more work remains to be done, 5-HT(2C) receptor agonists perhaps hold the most promise as potential therapies for smoking cessation.

  11. Nicotine and ethanol cooperate to enhance ventral tegmental area AMPA receptor function via α6-containing nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Engle, Staci E; McIntosh, J Michael; Drenan, Ryan M

    2015-04-01

    Nicotine + ethanol co-exposure results in additive and/or synergistic effects in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) to nucleus accumbens (NAc) dopamine (DA) pathway, but the mechanisms supporting this are unclear. We tested the hypothesis that nAChRs containing α6 subunits (α6* nAChRs) are involved in the response to nicotine + ethanol co-exposure. Exposing VTA slices from C57BL/6 WT animals to drinking-relevant concentrations of ethanol causes a marked enhancement of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor (AMPAR) function in VTA neurons. This effect was sensitive to α-conotoxin MII (an α6β2* nAChR antagonist), suggesting that α6* nAChR function is required. In mice expressing hypersensitive α6* nAChRs (α6L9S mice), we found that lower concentrations (relative to C57BL/6 WT) of ethanol were sufficient to enhance AMPAR function in VTA neurons. Exposure of live C57BL/6 WT mice to ethanol also produced AMPAR functional enhancement in VTA neurons, and studies in α6L9S mice strongly suggest a role for α6* nAChRs in this response. We then asked whether nicotine and ethanol cooperate to enhance VTA AMPAR function. We identified low concentrations of nicotine and ethanol that were capable of strongly enhancing VTA AMPAR function when co-applied to slices, but that did not enhance AMPAR function when applied alone. This effect was sensitive to both varenicline (an α4β2* and α6β2* nAChR partial agonist) and α-conotoxin MII. Finally, nicotine + ethanol co-exposure also enhanced AMPAR function in VTA neurons from α6L9S mice. Together, these data identify α6* nAChRs as important players in the response to nicotine + ethanol co-exposure in VTA neurons.

  12. Nicotinic activation of mesolimbic neurons assessed by rubidium efflux in rat accumbens and ventral tegmentum.

    PubMed

    Rowell, Peter P; Volk, Kelly A

    2004-01-01

    Dopaminergic mesolimbic neurons, with cell bodies in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) projecting to the nucleus accumbens (NAc), have been shown to be involved in the development of drug dependence. The application of nicotine to either the VTA or NAc produces an increase in dopamine release; however, the positive reinforcement produced by the systemic injection of nicotine is primarily due to stimulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the VTA. Because the brain levels of nicotine would likely be the same in both brain areas, the nAChRs in the NAc may be less sensitive than those in the VTA. This study was undertaken to make a direct comparison of the native nAChRs in intact slices of NAc and VTA by measuring nicotine-stimulated efflux of (86)Rb(+) in a superfusion assay. The potency of nicotine and several other agonists was similar in both brain areas, but nicotine was somewhat more efficacious in the NAc. The effects of treatment duration, calcium and nicotinic antagonists were also determined. The results suggest that the predominant effect of nicotine in the VTA following systemic administration is due to differences in neuronal circuitry or firing patterns rather than inherent differences in the two nAChR populations.

  13. Smoking-Relevant Nicotine Concentration Attenuates the Unfolded Protein Response in Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Srinivasan, Rahul; Henley, Beverley M.; Henderson, Brandon J.; Indersmitten, Tim; Cohen, Bruce N.; Kim, Charlene H.; McKinney, Sheri; Deshpande, Purnima; Xiao, Cheng

    2016-01-01

    Retrospective epidemiological studies show an inverse correlation between susceptibility to Parkinson's disease and a person's history of tobacco use. Animal model studies suggest nicotine as a neuroprotective agent and nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptors (nAChRs) as targets for neuroprotection, but the underlying neuroprotective mechanism(s) are unknown. We cultured mouse ventral midbrain neurons for 3 weeks. Ten to 20% of neurons were dopaminergic (DA), revealed by tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunoreactivity. We evoked mild endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress with tunicamycin (Tu), producing modest increases in the level of nuclear ATF6, phosphorylated eukaryotic initiation factor 2α, nuclear XBP1, and the downstream proapoptotic effector nuclear C/EBP homologous protein. We incubated cultures for 2 weeks with 200 nm nicotine, the approximate steady-state concentration between cigarette smoking or vaping, or during nicotine patch use. Nicotine incubation suppressed Tu-induced ER stress and the unfolded protein response (UPR). Study of mice with fluorescent nAChR subunits showed that the cultured TH+ neurons displayed α4, α6, and β3 nAChR subunit expression and ACh-evoked currents. Gene expression profile in cultures from TH-eGFP mice showed that the TH+ neurons also express several other genes associated with DA release. Nicotine also upregulated ACh-induced currents in DA neurons by ∼2.5-fold. Thus, nicotine, at a concentration too low to activate an appreciable fraction of plasma membrane nAChRs, induces two sequelae of pharmacological chaperoning in the ER: UPR suppression and nAChR upregulation. Therefore, one mechanism of neuroprotection by nicotine is pharmacological chaperoning, leading to UPR suppression. Measuring this pathway may help in assessing neuroprotection. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Parkinson's disease (PD) cannot yet be cured or prevented. However, many retrospective epidemiological studies reveal that PD is diagnosed less frequently in

  14. Binding interactions with the complementary subunit of nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Blum, Angela P; Van Arnam, Ethan B; German, Laurel A; Lester, Henry A; Dougherty, Dennis A

    2013-03-08

    The agonist-binding site of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) spans an interface between two subunits of the pentameric receptor. The principal component of this binding site is contributed by an α subunit, and it binds the cationic moiety of the nicotinic pharmacophore. The other part of the pharmacophore, a hydrogen bond acceptor, has recently been shown to bind to the complementary non-α subunit via the backbone NH of a conserved Leu. This interaction was predicted by studies of ACh-binding proteins and confirmed by functional studies of the neuronal (CNS) nAChR, α4β2. The ACh-binding protein structures further suggested that the hydrogen bond to the backbone NH is mediated by a water molecule and that a second hydrogen bonding interaction occurs between the water molecule and the backbone CO of a conserved Asn, also on the non-α subunit. Here, we provide new insights into the nature of the interactions between the hydrogen bond acceptor of nicotinic agonists and the complementary subunit backbone. We studied both the nAChR of the neuromuscular junction (muscle-type) and a neuronal subtype, (α4)2(β4)3. In the muscle-type receptor, both ACh and nicotine showed a strong interaction with the Leu NH, but the potent nicotine analog epibatidine did not. This interaction was much attenuated in the α4β4 receptor. Surprisingly, we found no evidence for a functionally significant interaction with the backbone carbonyl of the relevant Asn in either receptor with an array of agonists.

  15. r-bPiDI, an α6β2* Nicotinic Receptor Antagonist, Decreases Nicotine-Evoked Dopamine Release and Nicotine Reinforcement

    PubMed Central

    Beckmann, Joshua S.; Meyer, Andrew C.; Pivavarchyk, M.; Horton, David B.; Zheng, Guangrong; Smith, Andrew M.; Wooters, Thomas E.; McIntosh, J. Michael; Crooks, Peter A.; Bardo, Michael T.

    2015-01-01

    α6β2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nACh Rs) expressed by dopaminergic neurons mediate nicotine-evoked dopamine (DA) release and nicotine reinforcement. α6β2* antagonists inhibit these effects of nicotine, such that α6β2* receptors serve as therapeutic targets for nicotine addiction. The present research assessed the neuropharmacology of 1,10-bis(3-methyl-5,6-dihydropyridin-1(2H)-yl)decane (r-bPiDI), a novel small-molecule, tertiary amino analog of its parent compound, N,N-decane-1,10-diyl-bis-3-picolinium diiodide (bPiDI). bPiDI was previously shown to inhibit both nicotine-evoked DA release and the reinforcing effects of nicotine. In the current study, r-bPiDI inhibition of [3H]nicotine and [3H]methyllyca-conitine binding sites was evaluated to assess interaction with the recognition binding sites on α4β2* and α7* nAChRs, respectively. Further, r-bPiDI inhibition of nicotine-evoked DA release in vitro in the absence and presence of α-conotoxin MII and following chronic in vivo nicotine administration were determined. The ability of r-bPiDI to decrease nicotine self-administration and food-maintained responding was also assessed. Results show that r-bPiDI did not inhibit [3H]nicotine or [3H]methylly-caconitine binding, but potently (IC50 = 37.5 nM) inhibited nicotine-evoked DA release from superfused striatal slices obtained from either drug naïve rats or from those repeatedly treated with nicotine. r-bPiDI inhibition of nicotine-evoked DA release was not different in the absence or presence of α-conotoxin MII, indicating that r-bPiDI acts as a potent, selective α6β2* nAChR antagonist. Acute systemic administration of r-bPiDI specifically decreased nicotine self-administration by 75 %, and did not alter food-maintained responding, demonstrating greater specificity relative to bPiDI and bPiDDB, as well as the tertiary amino analog r-bPiDDB. The current work describes the discovery of r-bPiDI, a tertiary amino, α-conotoxin MII-like small molecule

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

    PubMed

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

    2005-03-24

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

  17. Co-activation of VTA DA and GABA neurons mediates nicotine reinforcement.

    PubMed

    Tolu, S; Eddine, R; Marti, F; David, V; Graupner, M; Pons, S; Baudonnat, M; Husson, M; Besson, M; Reperant, C; Zemdegs, J; Pagès, C; Hay, Y A H; Lambolez, B; Caboche, J; Gutkin, B; Gardier, A M; Changeux, J-P; Faure, P; Maskos, U

    2013-03-01

    Smoking is the most important preventable cause of mortality and morbidity worldwide. This nicotine addiction is mediated through the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR), expressed on most neurons, and also many other organs in the body. Even within the ventral tegmental area (VTA), the key brain area responsible for the reinforcing properties of all drugs of abuse, nicotine acts on several different cell types and afferents. Identifying the precise action of nicotine on this microcircuit, in vivo, is important to understand reinforcement, and finally to develop efficient smoking cessation treatments. We used a novel lentiviral system to re-express exclusively high-affinity nAChRs on either dopaminergic (DAergic) or γ-aminobutyric acid-releasing (GABAergic) neurons, or both, in the VTA. Using in vivo electrophysiology, we show that, contrary to widely accepted models, the activation of GABA neurons in the VTA plays a crucial role in the control of nicotine-elicited DAergic activity. Our results demonstrate that both positive and negative motivational values are transmitted through the dopamine (DA) neuron, but that the concerted activity of DA and GABA systems is necessary for the reinforcing actions of nicotine through burst firing of DA neurons. This work identifies the GABAergic interneuron as a potential target for smoking cessation drug development.

  18. Differential use of the nicotinic receptor by rabies virus based upon substrate origin.

    PubMed

    Castañeda-Castellanos, David R; Castellanos, Jaime E; Hurtado, Hernán

    2002-04-01

    To determine the role that the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor plays in the adsorption process of rabies virus (RV), adult dorsal root ganglion dissociated cultures were exposed to nicotinic agonists before being inoculated. The fixed strain of RV Challenge Virus Standard-11 (CVS-11) was used after being passaged in two different ways, in baby hamster kidney (BHK) cells and in adult mouse brain (MB). Carbachol and nicotine reduced the percentage of CVS-MB infected neurons, yet none of the agonists tested changed the proportion of CVS-BHK infected neurons. This result suggests that the RV phenotype changes depending on its replication environment and neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are preferentially used for infection by RV strains adapted to adult mouse brain but not to fibroblasts.

  19. Nicotinic and opioid receptor regulation of striatal dopamine D2-receptor mediated transmission

    PubMed Central

    Mamaligas, Aphroditi A.; Cai, Yuan; Ford, Christopher P.

    2016-01-01

    In addition to dopamine neuron firing, cholinergic interneurons (ChIs) regulate dopamine release in the striatum via presynaptic nicotinic receptors (nAChRs) on dopamine axon terminals. Synchronous activity of ChIs is necessary to evoke dopamine release through this pathway. The frequency-dependence of disynaptic nicotinic modulation has led to the hypothesis that nAChRs act as a high-pass filter in the dopaminergic microcircuit. Here, we used optogenetics to selectively stimulate either ChIs or dopamine terminals directly in the striatum. To measure the functional consequence of dopamine release, D2-receptor synaptic activity was assessed via virally overexpressed potassium channels (GIRK2) in medium spiny neurons (MSNs). We found that nicotinic-mediated dopamine release was blunted at higher frequencies because nAChRs exhibit prolonged desensitization after a single pulse of synchronous ChI activity. However, when dopamine neurons alone were stimulated, nAChRs had no effect at any frequency. We further assessed how opioid receptors modulate these two mechanisms of release. Bath application of the κ opioid receptor agonist U69593 decreased D2-receptor activation through both pathways, whereas the μ opioid receptor agonist DAMGO decreased D2-receptor activity only as a result of cholinergic-mediated dopamine release. Thus the release of dopamine can be independently modulated when driven by either dopamine neurons or cholinergic interneurons. PMID:27886263

  20. Replicated Risk Nicotinic Cholinergic Receptor Genes for Nicotine Dependence

    PubMed Central

    Zuo, Lingjun; Garcia-Milian, Rolando; Guo, Xiaoyun; Zhong, Chunlong; Tan, Yunlong; Wang, Zhiren; Wang, Jijun; Wang, Xiaoping; Kang, Longli; Lu, Lu; Chen, Xiangning; Li, Chiang-Shan R.; Luo, Xingguang

    2016-01-01

    It has been hypothesized that the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) play important roles in nicotine dependence (ND) and influence the number of cigarettes smoked per day (CPD) in smokers. We compiled the associations between nicotinic cholinergic receptor genes (CHRNs) and ND/CPD that were replicated across different studies, reviewed the expression of these risk genes in human/mouse brains, and verified their expression using independent samples of both human and mouse brains. The potential functions of the replicated risk variants were examined using cis-eQTL analysis or predicted using a series of bioinformatics analyses. We found replicated and significant associations for ND/CPD at 19 SNPs in six genes in three genomic regions (CHRNB3-A6, CHRNA5-A3-B4 and CHRNA4). These six risk genes are expressed in at least 18 distinct areas of the human/mouse brain, with verification in our independent human and mouse brain samples. The risk variants might influence the transcription, expression and splicing of the risk genes, alter RNA secondary or protein structure. We conclude that the replicated associations between CHRNB3-A6, CHRNA5-A3-B4, CHRNA4 and ND/CPD are very robust. More research is needed to examine how these genetic variants contribute to the risk for ND/CPD. PMID:27827986

  1. Replicated Risk Nicotinic Cholinergic Receptor Genes for Nicotine Dependence.

    PubMed

    Zuo, Lingjun; Garcia-Milian, Rolando; Guo, Xiaoyun; Zhong, Chunlong; Tan, Yunlong; Wang, Zhiren; Wang, Jijun; Wang, Xiaoping; Kang, Longli; Lu, Lu; Chen, Xiangning; Li, Chiang-Shan R; Luo, Xingguang

    2016-11-07

    It has been hypothesized that the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) play important roles in nicotine dependence (ND) and influence the number of cigarettes smoked per day (CPD) in smokers. We compiled the associations between nicotinic cholinergic receptor genes (CHRNs) and ND/CPD that were replicated across different studies, reviewed the expression of these risk genes in human/mouse brains, and verified their expression using independent samples of both human and mouse brains. The potential functions of the replicated risk variants were examined using cis-eQTL analysis or predicted using a series of bioinformatics analyses. We found replicated and significant associations for ND/CPD at 19 SNPs in six genes in three genomic regions (CHRNB3-A6, CHRNA5-A3-B4 and CHRNA4). These six risk genes are expressed in at least 18 distinct areas of the human/mouse brain, with verification in our independent human and mouse brain samples. The risk variants might influence the transcription, expression and splicing of the risk genes, alter RNA secondary or protein structure. We conclude that the replicated associations between CHRNB3-A6, CHRNA5-A3-B4,CHRNA4 and ND/CPD are very robust. More research is needed to examine how these genetic variants contribute to the risk for ND/CPD.

  2. Increased nicotine response in iPSC-derived human neurons carrying the CHRNA5 N398 allele

    PubMed Central

    Oni, Eileen N.; Halikere, Apoorva; Li, Guohui; Toro-Ramos, Alana J.; Swerdel, Mavis R.; Verpeut, Jessica L.; Moore, Jennifer C.; Bello, Nicholas T.; Bierut, Laura J.; Goate, Alison; Tischfield, Jay A.; Pang, Zhiping P.; Hart, Ronald P.

    2016-01-01

    Genetic variation in nicotinic receptor alpha 5 (CHRNA5) has been associated with increased risk of addiction-associated phenotypes in humans yet little is known the underlying neural basis. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) were derived from donors homozygous for either the major (D398) or the minor (N398) allele of the nonsynonymous single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), rs16969968, in CHRNA5. To understand the impact of these nicotinic receptor variants in humans, we differentiated these iPSCs to dopamine (DA) or glutamatergic neurons and then tested their functional properties and response to nicotine. Results show that N398 variant human DA neurons differentially express genes associated with ligand receptor interaction and synaptic function. While both variants exhibited physiological properties consistent with mature neuronal function, the N398 neuronal population responded more actively with an increased excitatory postsynaptic current response upon the application of nicotine in both DA and glutamatergic neurons. Glutamatergic N398 neurons responded to lower nicotine doses (0.1 μM) with greater frequency and amplitude but they also exhibited rapid desensitization, consistent with previous analyses of N398-associated nicotinic receptor function. This study offers a proof-of-principle for utilizing human neurons to study gene variants contribution to addiction. PMID:27698409

  3. Contribution of position alpha4S336 on functional expression and up-regulation of alpha4beta2 neuronal nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    López-Hernández, Gretchen Y; Biaggi-Labiosa, Nilza M; Torres-Cintrón, Alexis; Ortiz-Acevedo, Alejandro; Lasalde-Dominicci, José A

    2009-02-01

    Phosphorylation of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) is believed to play a critical role in its nicotine-induced desensitization and up-regulation. We examined the contribution of a consensus PKC site in the alpha4 M3/M4 intracellular loop (alpha4S336) on the desensitization and up-regulation of alpha4beta2 nAChRs expressed in oocytes. Position alpha4S336 was replaced with either alanine to abolish potential phosphorylation at this site or with aspartic acid to mimic phosphorylation at this same site. Mutations alpha4S336A and alpha4S336D displayed a threefold increase in the ACh-induced response and an increase in ACh EC(50). Epibatidine binding revealed a three and sevenfold increase in surface expression for the alpha4S336A and alpha4S336D mutations, respectively, relative to wild-type, therefore, both mutations enhanced expression of the alpha4beta2 nAChR. Interestingly, the EC(50)'s and peak currents for nicotine activation remained unaffected in both mutants. Both mutations abolished the nicotine-induced up-regulation that is normally observed in the wild-type. The present data suggest that adding or removing a negative charge at this phosphorylation site cannot be explained by a simple straightforward on-and-off mechanism; rather a more complex mechanism(s) may govern the functional expression of the alpha4beta2 nAChR. Along the same line, our data support the idea that phosphorylation at multiple consensus sites in the alpha4 subunit could play a remarkable role on the regulation of the functional expression of the alpha4beta2 nAChR.

  4. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in Sensory Cortex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Metherate, Raju

    2004-01-01

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

  5. Nicotinic Receptor Polymorphism in Lung Cancer

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-10-01

    bronchial cells to the tobacco nitrosamine -induced carcinogenic transformation of human bronchial cells [1-2]. 15. SUBJECT TERMS nicotinic receptor...cells to the tobacco nitrosamine -induced carcinogenic transformation of human bronchial cells [1-2]. Body According to the Statement of Works

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  7. Expression of cloned α6* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jingyi; Kuryatov, Alexander; Lindstrom, Jon

    2015-09-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) are ACh-gated ion channels formed from five homologous subunits in subtypes defined by their subunit composition and stoichiometry. Some subtypes readily produce functional AChRs in Xenopus oocytes and transfected cell lines. α6β2β3* AChRs (subtypes formed from these subunits and perhaps others) are not easily expressed. This may be because the types of neurons in which they are expressed (typically dopaminergic neurons) have unique chaperones for assembling α6β2β3* AChRs, especially in the presence of the other AChR subtypes. Because these relatively minor brain AChR subtypes are of major importance in addiction to nicotine, it is important for drug development as well as investigation of their functional properties to be able to efficiently express human α6β2β3* AChRs. We review the issues and progress in expressing α6* AChRs. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'The Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: From Molecular Biology to Cognition'.

  8. Mammalian Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: From Structure to Function

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2008-05-01

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

  10. SAR of α7 nicotinic receptor agonists derived from tilorone: exploration of a novel nicotinic pharmacophore.

    PubMed

    Schrimpf, Michael R; Sippy, Kevin B; Briggs, Clark A; Anderson, David J; Li, Tao; Ji, Jianguo; Frost, Jennifer M; Surowy, Carol S; Bunnelle, William H; Gopalakrishnan, Murali; Meyer, Michael D

    2012-02-15

    The well-known interferon-inducer tilorone was found to possess potent affinity for the agonist site of the α7 neuronal nicotinic receptor (K(i)=56 nM). SAR investigations determined that both basic sidechains are essential for potent activity, however active monosubstituted derivatives can also be prepared if the flexible sidechains are replaced with conformationally rigidified cyclic amines. Analogs in which the fluorenone core is replaced with either dibenzothiophene-5,5-dioxide or xanthenone also retain potent activity.

  11. C3-halogenation of cytisine generates potent and efficacious nicotinic receptor agonists.

    PubMed

    Abin-Carriquiry, J Andrés; Voutilainen, Merja H; Barik, Jacques; Cassels, Bruce K; Iturriaga-Vásquez, Patricio; Bermudez, Isabel; Durand, Claudia; Dajas, Federico; Wonnacott, Susan

    2006-04-24

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors subserve predominantly modulatory roles in the brain, making them attractive therapeutic targets. Natural products provide key leads in the quest for nicotinic receptor subtype-selective compounds. Cytisine, found in Leguminosae spp., binds with high affinity to alpha4beta2* nicotinic receptors. We have compared the effect of C3 and C5 halogenation of cytisine and methylcytisine (MCy) on their interaction with native rat nicotinic receptors. 3-Bromocytisine (3-BrCy) and 3-iodocytisine (3-ICy) exhibited increased binding affinity (especially at alpha7 nicotinic receptors; Ki approximately 0.1 microM) and functional potency, whereas C5-halogenation was detrimental. 3-BrCy and 3-ICy were more potent than cytisine at evoking [3H]dopamine release from striatal slices (EC50 approximately 11 nM), [3H]noradrenaline release from hippocampal slices (EC50 approximately 250 nM), increases in intracellular Ca2+ in PC12 cells and inward currents in Xenopus oocytes expressing human alpha3beta4 nicotinic receptor (EC50 approximately 2 microM). These compounds were also more efficacious than cytisine. C3-halogenation of cytisine is proposed to stabilize the open conformation of the nicotinic receptor but does not enhance subtype selectivity.

  12. Prenatal nicotine exposure enhances the trigeminocardiac reflex via serotonin receptor facilitation in brainstem pathways.

    PubMed

    Gorini, C; Jameson, H; Woerman, A L; Perry, D C; Mendelowitz, D

    2013-08-15

    In this study we used a rat model for prenatal nicotine exposure to test whether clinically relevant concentrations of brain nicotine and cotinine are passed from dams exposed to nicotine to her pups, whether this changes the trigeminocardiac reflex (TCR), and whether serotonergic function in the TCR brainstem circuitry is altered. Pregnant Sprague-Dawley dams were exposed to 6 mg·kg(-1)·day(-1) of nicotine via osmotic minipumps for the duration of pregnancy. Following birth dams and pups were killed, blood was collected, and brain nicotine and cotinine levels were measured. A separate group of prenatal nicotine-exposed pups was used for electrophysiological recordings. A horizontal brainstem slice was obtained by carefully preserving the trigeminal nerve with fluorescent identification of cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs) in the nucleus ambiguus. Stimulation of the trigeminal nerve evoked excitatory postsynaptic current in CVNs. Our data demonstrate that prenatal nicotine exposure significantly exaggerates both the TCR-evoked changes in heart rate in conscious unrestrained pups, and the excitatory neurotransmission to CVNs upon trigeminal afferent nerve stimulation within this brainstem reflex circuit. Application of the 5-HT1A receptor antagonist WAY 100635 (100 μM) and 5-HT2A/C receptor antagonist ketanserin (10 μM)significantly decreased neurotransmission, indicating an increased facilitation of 5-HT function in prenatal nicotine-exposed animals. Prenatal nicotine exposure enhances activation of 5-HT receptors and exaggerates the trigeminocardiac reflex.

  13. Prenatal nicotine exposure enhances the trigeminocardiac reflex via serotonin receptor facilitation in brainstem pathways

    PubMed Central

    Gorini, C.; Jameson, H.; Woerman, A. L.; Perry, D. C.

    2013-01-01

    In this study we used a rat model for prenatal nicotine exposure to test whether clinically relevant concentrations of brain nicotine and cotinine are passed from dams exposed to nicotine to her pups, whether this changes the trigeminocardiac reflex (TCR), and whether serotonergic function in the TCR brainstem circuitry is altered. Pregnant Sprague-Dawley dams were exposed to 6 mg·kg−1·day−1 of nicotine via osmotic minipumps for the duration of pregnancy. Following birth dams and pups were killed, blood was collected, and brain nicotine and cotinine levels were measured. A separate group of prenatal nicotine-exposed pups was used for electrophysiological recordings. A horizontal brainstem slice was obtained by carefully preserving the trigeminal nerve with fluorescent identification of cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs) in the nucleus ambiguus. Stimulation of the trigeminal nerve evoked excitatory postsynaptic current in CVNs. Our data demonstrate that prenatal nicotine exposure significantly exaggerates both the TCR-evoked changes in heart rate in conscious unrestrained pups, and the excitatory neurotransmission to CVNs upon trigeminal afferent nerve stimulation within this brainstem reflex circuit. Application of the 5-HT1A receptor antagonist WAY 100635 (100 μM) and 5-HT2A/C receptor antagonist ketanserin (10 μM)significantly decreased neurotransmission, indicating an increased facilitation of 5-HT function in prenatal nicotine-exposed animals. Prenatal nicotine exposure enhances activation of 5-HT receptors and exaggerates the trigeminocardiac reflex. PMID:23766497

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2000-10-01

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

  16. Functional alpha7 nicotinic receptors are expressed on immature granule cells of the postnatal dentate gyrus.

    PubMed

    John, Danielle; Shelukhina, Irina; Yanagawa, Yuchio; Deuchars, Jim; Henderson, Zaineb

    2015-03-19

    Neurogenesis occurs throughout life in the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus, and postnatal-born granule cells migrate into the granule cell layer and extend axons to their target areas. The α7*nicotinic receptor has been implicated in neuronal maturation during development of the brain and is abundant in interneurons of the hippocampal formation of the adult brain. Signalling through these same receptors is believed also to promote maturation and integration of adult-born granule cells in the hippocampal formation. We therefore aimed to determine whether functional α7*nicotinic receptors are expressed in developing granule cells of the postnatal dentate gyrus. For these experiments we used 2-3 week-old Wistar rats, and 2-9 week old transgenic mice in which GABAergic interneurons were marked by expression of green fluorescent protein. Immunohistochemistry indicated the presence of α7*nicotinic receptor subunits around granule cells close around the subgranular zone which correlated with the distribution of developmental markers for immature granule cells. Whole-cell patch clamp recording showed that a proportion of granule cells responded to puffed ACh in the presence of atropine, and that these cells possessed electrophysiological properties found in immature granule cells. The nicotinic responses were potentiated by an allosteric α7*nicotinic receptor modulator, which were blocked by a specific α7*nicotinic receptor antagonist and were not affected by ionotropic glutamate or GABA receptor antagonists. These results suggest the presence of functional somato-dendritic α7*nicotinic receptors on immature granule cells of the postnatal dentate gyrus, consistent with studies implicating α7*nicotinic receptors in dendritic maturation of dentate gyrus neurons in adult brain.

  17. Functional alpha7 nicotinic receptors are expressed on immature granule cells of the postnatal dentate gyrus

    PubMed Central

    John, Danielle; Shelukhina, Irina; Yanagawa, Yuchio; Deuchars, Jim; Henderson, Zaineb

    2015-01-01

    Neurogenesis occurs throughout life in the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus, and postnatal-born granule cells migrate into the granule cell layer and extend axons to their target areas. The α7⁎nicotinic receptor has been implicated in neuronal maturation during development of the brain and is abundant in interneurons of the hippocampal formation of the adult brain. Signalling through these same receptors is believed also to promote maturation and integration of adult-born granule cells in the hippocampal formation. We therefore aimed to determine whether functional α7⁎nicotinic receptors are expressed in developing granule cells of the postnatal dentate gyrus. For these experiments we used 2–3 week-old Wistar rats, and 2–9 week old transgenic mice in which GABAergic interneurons were marked by expression of green fluorescent protein. Immunohistochemistry indicated the presence of α7⁎nicotinic receptor subunits around granule cells close around the subgranular zone which correlated with the distribution of developmental markers for immature granule cells. Whole-cell patch clamp recording showed that a proportion of granule cells responded to puffed ACh in the presence of atropine, and that these cells possessed electrophysiological properties found in immature granule cells. The nicotinic responses were potentiated by an allosteric α7⁎nicotinic receptor modulator, which were blocked by a specific α7⁎nicotinic receptor antagonist and were not affected by ionotropic glutamate or GABA receptor antagonists. These results suggest the presence of functional somato-dendritic α7⁎nicotinic receptors on immature granule cells of the postnatal dentate gyrus, consistent with studies implicating α7⁎nicotinic receptors in dendritic maturation of dentate gyrus neurons in adult brain. PMID:25553616

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2006-06-23

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

  19. Genome-Wide Expression Analysis Reveals Diverse Effects of Acute Nicotine Exposure on Neuronal Function-Related Genes and Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ju; Cui, Wenyan; Wei, Jinxue; Sun, Dongxiao; Gutala, Ramana; Gu, Jun; Li, Ming D.

    2011-01-01

    Previous human and animal studies demonstrate that acute nicotine exposure has complicated influences on the function of the nervous system, which may lead to long-lasting effects on the behavior and physiology of the subject. To determine the genes and pathways that might account for long-term changes after acute nicotine exposure, a pathway-focused oligoarray specifically designed for drug addiction research was used to assess acute nicotine effect on gene expression in the neuron-like SH-SY5Y cells. Our results showed that 295 genes involved in various biological functions were differentially regulated by 1 h of nicotine treatment. Among these genes, the expression changes of 221 were blocked by mecamylamine, indicating that the majority of nicotine-modulated genes were altered through the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs)-mediated signaling process. We further identified 14 biochemical pathways enriched among the nicotine-modulated genes, among which were those involved in neural development/synaptic plasticity, neuronal survival/death, immune response, or cellular metabolism. In the genes significantly regulated by nicotine but blocked by mecamylamine, 13 enriched pathways were detected. Nine of these pathways were shared with those enriched in the genes regulated by nicotine, including neuronal function-related pathways such as glucocorticoid receptor signaling, p38 MAPK signaling, PI3K/AKT signaling, and PTEN signaling, implying that nAChRs play important roles in the regulation of these biological processes. Together, our results not only provide insights into the mechanism underlying the acute response of neuronal cells to nicotine but also provide clues to how acute nicotine exposure exerts long-term effects on the nervous system. PMID:21556275

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1998-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  2. Nicotine trapping causes the persistent desensitization of alpha4beta2 nicotinic receptors expressed in oocytes.

    PubMed

    Jia, Li; Flotildes, Karen; Li, Maureen; Cohen, Bruce N

    2003-02-01

    To determine whether prolonged nicotine exposure persistently inactivates rat alpha4beta2 nicotinic receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes, we measured the voltage-clamped alpha4beta2 response to acetylcholine (ACh) before and 24 h after, 1-h or 12-h incubations in 10 microm nicotine. A 12-h incubation in 10 microm nicotine depressed the alpha4beta2 ACh response for 24 h without affecting total or surface alpha4beta2 expression. To determine whether oocyte-mediated nicotine release caused this depression, we co-incubated an alpha4beta2-expressing oocyte with an un-injected one (pre-incubated in 10 microm nicotine for 12 h) for 24 h and measured the change in the alpha4beta2 ACh response. The response decreased by the same factor after the co-incubation as it did after a 12-h incubation in 10 microm nicotine and a 24-h incubation in nicotine-free media. Thus, oocyte-mediated nicotine release caused the persistent desensitization we observed after a 12-h incubation in 10 microm nicotine. Consistent with this result, measurements of [3H]nicotine release show that oocytes release enough nicotine into the wash media to desensitize alpha4beta2 receptors and that prolonged incubation in 300 microm ACh (which cannot readily cross the membrane or accumulate in acidic vesicles) did not persistently depress the alpha4beta2 response.

  3. Alpha4* nicotinic receptors in preBotzinger complex mediate cholinergic/nicotinic modulation of respiratory rhythm.

    PubMed

    Shao, Xuesi M; Tan, Wenbin; Xiu, Joanne; Puskar, Nyssa; Fonck, Carlos; Lester, Henry A; Feldman, Jack L

    2008-01-09

    Acetylcholine and nicotine can modulate respiratory patterns by acting on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the preBötzinger complex (preBötC). To further explore the molecular composition of these nAChRs, we studied a knock-in mouse strain with a leucine-to-alanine mutation in the M2 pore-lining region (L9'A) of the nAChR alpha4 subunit; this mutation renders alpha4-containing receptors hypersensitive to agonists. We recorded respiratory-related rhythmic motor activity from hypoglossal nerve (XIIn) and patch-clamped preBötC inspiratory neurons in an in vitro medullary slice preparation from neonatal mice. Nicotine affected respiratory rhythm at concentrations approximately 100-fold lower in the homozygous L9'A knock-in mice compared with wild-type mice. Bath application of 5 nm nicotine increased the excitability of preBötC inspiratory neurons, increased respiratory frequency, and induced tonic/seizure-like activities in XIIn in L9'A mice, effects similar to those induced by 1 microM nicotine in wild-type mice. In L9'A mice, microinjection of low nanomolar concentrations of nicotine into the preBötC increased respiratory frequency, whereas injection into the ipsilateral hypoglossal (XII) nucleus induced tonic/seizure-like activity. The alpha4*-selective nAChR antagonist dihydro-beta-erythroidine produced opposite effects and blocked the nicotinic responses. These data, showing that nAChRs in the preBötC and XII nucleus in L9'A mice are hypersensitive to nicotine and endogenous ACh, suggest that functional alpha4* nAChRs are present in the preBötC. They mediate cholinergic/nicotinic modulation of the excitability of preBötC inspiratory neurons and of respiratory rhythm. Furthermore, functional alpha4* nAChRs are present in XII nucleus and mediate cholinergic/nicotinic modulation of tonic activity in XIIn.

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

    PubMed

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

    1994-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-03-05

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  9. Prenatal nicotine exposure selectively affects nicotinic receptor expression in primary and associative visual cortices of the fetal baboon.

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-01

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

  10. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from chick optic lobe.

    PubMed Central

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

    1982-01-01

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

  11. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors as Targets for Tobacco Cessation Therapeutics: Cutting-Edge Methodologies to Understand Receptor Assembly and Trafficking.

    PubMed

    Fox-Loe, Ashley M; Dwoskin, Linda P; Richards, Christopher I

    2016-01-01

    Tobacco dependence is a chronic relapsing disorder and nicotine, the primary alkaloid in tobacco, acts at nicotinic receptors to stimulate dopamine release in brain, which is responsible for the reinforcing properties of nicotine, leading to addiction. Although the majority of tobacco users express the desire to quit, only a small percentage of those attempting to quit are successful using the currently available pharmacotherapies. Nicotine upregulates the number of specific nicotinic receptors on the neuronal cell surface. An increase in receptor trafficking or preferential stoichiometric assembly of receptor subunits involves changes in assembly, endoplasmic reticulum export, vesicle transport, decreased degradation, desensitization, enhanced maturation of functional pentamers, and pharmacological chaperoning. Understanding these changes on a mechanistic level is important to the development of nicotinic receptors as drug targets. For this reason, cutting-edge methodologies are being developed and employed to pinpoint distinct changes in localization, assembly, export, vesicle trafficking, and stoichiometry in order to further understand the physiology of these receptors and to evaluate the action of novel therapeutics for smoking cessation.

  12. Characterization of a series of anabaseine-derived compounds reveals that the 3-(4)-dimethylaminocinnamylidine derivative is a selective agonist at neuronal nicotinic alpha 7/125I-alpha-bungarotoxin receptor subtypes.

    PubMed

    de Fiebre, C M; Meyer, E M; Henry, J C; Muraskin, S I; Kem, W R; Papke, R L

    1995-01-01

    Investigation of the naturally occurring, nicotinic agonist anabaseine and novel derivatives has shown that these compounds have cytoprotective and memory-enhancing effects. The hypothesis that these arise at least in part through actions on brain nicotinic receptors was evaluated by examining the ability of these compounds to displace the binding of nicotinic ligands and to affect the function of the alpha 4 beta 2 and alpha 7 receptor subtypes expressed in Xenopus oocytes. The derivative 3-(4)-dimethylaminocinnamylidine anabaseine (DMAC) was found to be a selective alpha 7 receptor agonist; it was more potent than nicotine, acetylcholine, anabaseine, and other derivatives at activating the alpha 7 receptor subtype, while displaying little agonist activity at alpha 4 beta 2 and other receptor subtypes. Compared with anabaseine and the other derivatives, DMAC was the most potent at displacing 125I-alpha-bungarotoxin binding (putative alpha 7) and the least potent at displacing [3H]cytisine binding (putative alpha 4 beta 2) to brain membranes. Independently of agonist activities, all of the novel compounds displayed secondary inhibitory activity at both receptor subtypes. At the alpha 4 beta 2 receptor subtype, inhibition by the 3-(2,4)-dimethoxybenzylidene derivative was enhanced by coapplication of acetylcholine, suggesting a noncompetitive form of inhibition. Anabaseine and nicotine prolonged the time course of activation of alpha 4 beta 2 receptors, compared with acetylcholine, suggesting sequential channel-blocking activity. As selective agonists, anabaseine derivatives such as DMAC may be useful for elucidating the function of alpha 7 nicotinic receptors, including their potential role(s) in the cytoprotective and memory-enhancing effects of nicotinic agents.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  14. Cell-surface translational dynamics of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Barrantes, Francisco J.

    2014-01-01

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

  15. Distinct roles of bulbar muscarinic and nicotinic receptors in olfactory discrimination learning.

    PubMed

    Devore, Sasha; de Almeida, Licurgo; Linster, Christiane

    2014-08-20

    The olfactory bulb (OB) and piriform cortex receive dense cholinergic projections from the basal forebrain. Cholinergic modulation within the piriform cortex has long been proposed to serve important functions in olfactory learning and memory. We here investigate how olfactory discrimination learning is regulated by cholinergic modulation of the OB inputs to the piriform cortex. We examined rats' performance on a two-alternative choice odor discrimination task following local, bilateral blockade of cholinergic nicotinic and/or muscarinic receptors in the OB. Results demonstrate that acquisition, but not recall, of novel discrimination problems is impaired following blockade of OB cholinergic receptors, although the relative contribution of muscarinic and nicotinic receptors depends on task difficulty. Blocking muscarinic receptors impairs learning for nearly all odor sets, whereas blocking nicotinic receptors only affects performance for perceptually similar odors. This pattern of behavioral effects is consistent with predictions from a model of cholinergic modulation in the OB and piriform cortex (de Almeida et al., 2013). Model simulations suggest that muscarinic and nicotinic receptors may serve complementary roles in regulating coherence and sparseness of the OB network output, which in turn differentially regulate the strength and overlap in cortical odor representations. Overall, our results suggest that muscarinic receptor blockade results in a bona fide learning impairment that may arise because cortical neurons are activated less often. Behavioral impairment following nicotinic receptor blockade may not be due to the inability of the cortex to learn, but rather arises because the cortex is unable to resolve highly overlapping input patterns.

  16. [Desensitization of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor].

    PubMed

    Quiñonez, M; Rojas, L

    1994-01-01

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

  17. Alpha-conotoxin MII-sensitive nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the nucleus accumbens shell regulate progressive ratio responding maintained by nicotine.

    PubMed

    Brunzell, Darlene H; Boschen, Karen E; Hendrick, Elizabeth S; Beardsley, Patrick M; McIntosh, J Michael

    2010-02-01

    Beta2 subunit containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (beta2(*)nAChRs; asterisk ((*)) denotes assembly with other subunits) are critical for nicotine self-administration and nicotine-associated dopamine (DA) release that supports nicotine reinforcement. The alpha6 subunit assembles with beta2 on DA neurons where alpha6beta2(*)nAChRs regulate nicotine-stimulated DA release at neuron terminals. Using local infusion of alpha-conotoxin MII (alpha-CTX MII), an antagonist with selectivity for alpha6beta2(*)nAChRs, the purpose of these experiments was to determine if alpha6beta2(*)nAChRs in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) shell are required for motivation to self-administer nicotine. Long-Evans rats lever-pressed for 0.03 mg/kg, i.v., nicotine accompanied by light+tone cues (NIC) or for light+tone cues unaccompanied by nicotine (CUEonly). Following extensive training, animals were tested under a progressive ratio (PR) schedule that required an increasing number of lever presses for each nicotine infusion and/or cue delivery. Immediately before each PR session, rats received microinfusions of alpha-CTX MII (0, 1, 5, or 10 pmol per side) into the NAc shell or the overlying anterior cingulate cortex. alpha-CTX MII dose dependently decreased break points and number of infusions earned by NIC rats following infusion into the NAc shell but not the anterior cingulate cortex. Concentrations of alpha-CTX MII that were capable of attenuating nicotine self-administration did not disrupt locomotor activity. There was no effect of infusion on lever pressing in CUEonly animals and NAc infusion alpha-CTX MII did not affect locomotor activity in an open field. These data suggest that alpha6beta2(*)nAChRs in the NAc shell regulate motivational aspects of nicotine reinforcement but not nicotine-associated locomotor activation.

  18. Neuronal effects of nicotine during auditory selective attention in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Smucny, Jason; Olincy, Ann; Rojas, Donald C; Tregellas, Jason R

    2016-01-01

    Although nicotine has been shown to improve attention deficits in schizophrenia, the neurobiological mechanisms underlying this effect are poorly understood. We hypothesized that nicotine would modulate attention-associated neuronal response in schizophrenia patients in the ventral parietal cortex (VPC), hippocampus, and anterior cingulate based on previous findings in control subjects. To test this hypothesis, the present study examined response in these regions in a cohort of nonsmoking patients and healthy control subjects using an auditory selective attention task with environmental noise distractors during placebo and nicotine administration. In agreement with our hypothesis, significant diagnosis (Control vs. Patient) X drug (Placebo vs. Nicotine) interactions were observed in the VPC and hippocampus. The interaction was driven by task-associated hyperactivity in patients (relative to healthy controls) during placebo administration, and decreased hyperactivity in patients after nicotine administration (relative to placebo). No significant interaction was observed in the anterior cingulate. Task-associated hyperactivity of the VPC predicted poor task performance in patients during placebo. Poor task performance also predicted symptoms in patients as measured by the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale. These results are the first to suggest that nicotine may modulate brain activity in a selective attention-dependent manner in schizophrenia.

  19. Nicotine uses neuron-glia communication to enhance hippocampal synaptic transmission and long-term memory.

    PubMed

    López-Hidalgo, Mónica; Salgado-Puga, Karla; Alvarado-Martínez, Reynaldo; Medina, Andrea Cristina; Prado-Alcalá, Roberto A; García-Colunga, Jesús

    2012-01-01

    Nicotine enhances synaptic transmission and facilitates long-term memory. Now it is known that bi-directional glia-neuron interactions play important roles in the physiology of the brain. However, the involvement of glial cells in the effects of nicotine has not been considered until now. In particular, the gliotransmitter D-serine, an endogenous co-agonist of NMDA receptors, enables different types of synaptic plasticity and memory in the hippocampus. Here, we report that hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity induced by nicotine was annulled by an enzyme that degrades endogenous D-serine, or by an NMDA receptor antagonist that acts at the D-serine binding site. Accordingly, both effects of nicotine: the enhancement of synaptic transmission and facilitation of long-term memory were eliminated by impairing glial cells with fluoroacetate, and were restored with exogenous D-serine. Together, these results show that glial D-serine is essential for the long-term effects of nicotine on synaptic plasticity and memory, and they highlight the roles of glial cells as key participants in brain functions.

  20. Multiple CNS nicotinic receptors mediate L-dopa-induced dyskinesias: studies with parkinsonian nicotinic receptor knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Quik, Maryka; Campos, Carla; Grady, Sharon R

    2013-10-15

    Accumulating evidence supports the idea that drugs acting at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) may be beneficial for Parkinson's disease, a neurodegenerative movement disorder characterized by a loss of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons. Nicotine administration to parkinsonian animals protects against nigrostriatal damage. In addition, nicotine and nAChR drugs improve L-dopa-induced dyskinesias, a debilitating side effect of L-dopa therapy which remains the gold-standard treatment for Parkinson's disease. Nicotine exerts its antidyskinetic effect by interacting with multiple nAChRs. One approach to identify the subtypes specifically involved in L-dopa-induced dyskinesias is through the use of nAChR subunit null mutant mice. Previous work with β2 and α6 nAChR knockout mice has shown that α6β2* nAChRs were necessary for the development/maintenance of L-dopa-induced abnormal involuntary movements (AIMs). The present results in parkinsonian α4 nAChR knockout mice indicate that α4β2* nAChRs also play an essential role since nicotine did not reduce L-dopa-induced AIMs in such mice. Combined analyses of the data from α4 and α6 knockout mice suggest that the α6α4β2β3 subtype may be critical. In contrast to the studies with α4 and α6 knockout mice, nicotine treatment did reduce L-dopa-induced AIMs in parkinsonian α7 nAChR knockout mice. However, α7 nAChR subunit deletion alone increased baseline AIMs, suggesting that α7 receptors exert an inhibitory influence on L-dopa-induced AIMs. In conclusion, α6β2*, α4β2* and α7 nAChRs all modulate L-dopa-induced AIMs, although their mode of regulation varies. Thus drugs targeting one or multiple nAChRs may be optimal for reducing L-dopa-induced dyskinesias in Parkinson's disease.

  1. Acetylcholine receptor extracellular domain determines sensitivity to nicotine-induced inactivation.

    PubMed

    Kuryatov, A; Olale, F A; Choi, C; Lindstrom, J

    2000-03-30

    We have shown previously that chronic exposure to submicromolar concentrations of nicotine permanently inactivates alpha4beta2 and alpha7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors while alpha3beta2 acetylcholine receptors are resistant to inactivation. Phosphorylation of the large cytoplasmic domain has been proposed to mediate functional inactivation. Chimeric subunits consisting of human alpha4 sequence from their N-terminus to either the beginning of the first transmembrane domain or the large cytoplasmic domain and alpha3 sequences thereafter formed acetylcholine receptors with beta2 subunits which were as susceptible to nicotine-induced inactivation as wild-type alpha4 acetylcholine receptors. The converse chimeras, containing the N-terminal parts of the alpha3 subunit and the C-terminal parts of the alpha4 subunit, formed acetylcholine receptors with beta2 subunits which were as resistant to nicotine-induced inactivation as wild-type alpha3beta2 acetylcholine receptors. Thus, inactivation of acetylcholine receptors produced by chronic exposure to nicotine results primarily from effects of the agonist on the extracellular and transmembrane domains of the alpha subunit.

  2. Nicotinic receptors, amyloid-beta, and synaptic failure in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Jürgensen, Sofia; Ferreira, Sergio T

    2010-01-01

    Dysfunctional cholinergic transmission is thought to underlie, at least in part, memory impairment and cognitive deficits in Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, it is still unclear whether this is a consequence of the loss of cholinergic neurons and elimination of nicotinic acetycholine receptors (nAChRs) in AD brain or of a direct impact of molecular interactions of the amyloid-beta (Abeta) peptide with nAChRs, leading to dysregulation of receptor function. This review examines recent progress in our understanding of the roles of nicotinic receptors in mechanisms of synaptic plasticity, molecular interactions of Abeta with nAChRs, and how Abeta-induced dysregulation of nicotinic receptor function may underlie synaptic failure in AD.

  3. Nicotine enhancement and reinforcer devaluation: Interaction with opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Kirshenbaum, Ari P; Suhaka, Jesse A; Phillips, Jessie L; Voltolini de Souza Pinto, Maiary

    In rats, nicotine enhances responding maintained by non-pharmacological reinforcers, and discontinuation of nicotine devalues those same reinforcers. The goal of this study was to assess the interaction of nicotine and opioid receptors and to evaluate the degree to which nicotine enhancement and nicotine-induced devaluation are related to opioid activation. Nicotine (0.4mg/kg), or nicotine plus naloxone (0.3 or 3.0mg/kg), was delivered to rats prior to progressive ratio (PR) schedule sessions in which sucrose was used as a reinforcer. PR-schedule responding was assessed during ten daily sessions of drug delivery, and for three post-dosing days/sessions. Control groups for this investigation included a saline-only condition, and naloxone-only (0.3 or 3.0mg/kg) conditions. When administered in conjunction with nicotine, both naloxone doses attenuated nicotine enhancement of the sucrose reinforcer, and the combination of the larger dose of naloxone (3.0mg/kg) with nicotine produced significant impairments in sucrose reinforced responding. When administered alone, neither dose of naloxone (0.3 & 3.0mg/kg) significantly altered responding in comparison to saline. Furthermore, when dosing was discontinued after ten once-daily doses, all nicotine groups (nicotine-only and nicotine+naloxone combination) demonstrated significant decreases in sucrose reinforcement compared to the saline group. Although opioid antagonism attenuated reinforcement enhancement by nicotine, it did not prevent reinforcer devaluation upon discontinuation of nicotine dosing, and the higher dose of naloxone (3.0mg/kg) produced decrements upon discontinuation on its own in the absence of nicotine.

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

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1989-03-16

    SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF THIS PAGE Form Approved REPORT DOCUMENTATION PAGE OMB No. 0704-0188 la. REPORT SECURITY CLASSIFICATION lb. RESTRICTIVE MARKINGS...ORGANIZATION 6b. OFFICE SYMBOL 7a. NAME OF MONITORING ORGANIZATION The Salk Institute (If applicable) Receptor Biology Laboratory I 6c. ADDRESS (City...State, and ZIP Code) 7b. ADDRESS (City, State, and ZIP Code) San Diego, California 92138-9216 8a. NAME OF FUNDING/SPONSORING 8b. OFFICE SYMBOL 9

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-15

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-03-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2000-03-30

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

  10. GABAA receptor inhibition triggers a nicotinic neuroprotective mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Ferchmin, P. A; Pérez, Dinely; Alvarez, William Castro; Penzo, Mario A.; Maldonado, Héctor M.; Eterovic, Vesna A.

    2014-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR)-mediated neuroprotection has been implicated in the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and hypoxic ischemic events, as well as other diseases hallmarked by excitotoxic and apoptotic neuronal death. Several modalities of nicotinic neuroprotection have been reported. However, although this process generally involves α4β2 and α7 subtypes, the underlying mechanisms are largely unknown. Interestingly, both activation and inhibition of α7 nAChRs have been reported to be neuroprotective. We have shown that inhibition of α7 nAChRs protects the function of acute hippocampal slices against excitotoxicity in a α4β2-dependent manner. Neuroprotection was assessed as the prevention of the NMDA-dependent loss of the area of population spikes (PSs) in the CA1 area of acute hippocampal slices. Our results support a model in which α7 AChRs control the release of GABA. Blocking either α7 or GABAA receptors reduces the inhibitory tone on cholinergic terminals, thereby promoting α4β2 activation, which in turn mediates neuroprotection. These results shed light on how α7 nAChR inhibition can be neuroprotective through a mechanism mediated by activation of α4β2 nAChRs. PMID:23280428

  11. Differential modulation of alpha 3 beta 2 and alpha 3 beta 4 neuronal nicotinic receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes by flufenamic acid and niflumic acid.

    PubMed

    Zwart, R; Oortgiesen, M; Vijverberg, H P

    1995-03-01

    Effects of flufenamic acid (FFA) and niflumic acid (NFA), which are often used to block Ca(2+)-activated Cl- current, have been investigated in voltage-clamped Xenopus oocytes expressing alpha 3 beta 2 and alpha 3 beta 4 nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChRs). NFA and FFA inhibit alpha 3 beta 2 nAChR-mediated inward currents and potentiate alpha 3 beta 4 nAChR-mediated inward currents in normal, Cl(-)-free and Ca(2+)-free solutions to a similar extent. The concentration-dependence of the inhibition of alpha 3 beta 2 nAChR-mediated ion current yields IC50 values of 90 microM for FFA and of 260 microM for NFA. The potentiation of alpha 3 beta 4 nAChR-mediated ion current by NFA yields an EC50 value of 30 microM, whereas the effect of FFA does not saturate for concentrations of up to 1 mM. At 100 microM, FFA reduces the maximum of the concentration-effect curve of ACh for alpha 3 beta 2 nAChRs, but leaves the EC50 of ACh unaffected. The same concentration of FFA potentiates alpha 3 beta 4 nAChR-mediated ion currents for all ACh concentrations and causes a small shift of the concentration-effect curve of ACh to lower agonist concentrations. The potentiation, like the inhibition, is most likely due to a noncompetitive effect of FFA. Increasing ACh-induced inward current either by raising the agonist concentration from 10 microM to 200 microM or by coapplication of 10 microM ACh and 200 microM FFA causes a similar enhancement of block of the alpha 3 beta 4 nAChR-mediated ion current by Mg2+. This suggests that the effects of FFA and of an increased agonist concentration result in a similar functional modification of the alpha 3 beta 4 nAChR-operated ion channel. It is concluded that alpha 3 beta 4 and alpha 3 beta 2 nAChRs are oppositely modulated by FFA and NFA through a direct beta-subunit-dependent effect.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  13. Chronic nicotine and withdrawal affect glutamatergic but not nicotinic receptor expression in the mesocorticolimbic pathway in a region-specific manner.

    PubMed

    Pistillo, Francesco; Fasoli, Francesca; Moretti, Milena; McClure-Begley, Tristan; Zoli, Michele; Marks, Michael J; Gotti, Cecilia

    2016-01-01

    Tobacco addiction is a complex form of dependence process that leads high relapse rates in people seeking to stop smoking. Nicotine elicits its primary effects on neuronal nicotinic cholinergic receptors (nAChRs), alters brain reward systems, and induces long-term changes during chronic nicotine use and withdrawal. We analysed the effects of chronic nicotine treatment and withdrawal on the mesocorticolimbic pathway (a brain reward circuit in which addictive drugs induce widespread adaptations) by analysing the expression of nAChRs in the midbrain, striatum and prefrontal cortex (PFC) of mice receiving intravenous infusions of nicotine (4mg/kg/h) or saline (control) for 14 days and mice sacrified two hours, and one, four and 14 days after treatment withdrawal. We biochemically fractionated whole tissue homogenates in order to obtain crude synaptosomal membranes. Western blotting analyses of these membrane fractions, ligand binding and immunoprecipitation studies, showed that chronic nicotine up-regulates heteromeric β2* nAChRs in all three mesocorticolimbic areas, and that these receptors are rapidly removed from synapses upon the cessation of nicotine treatment. The extent of nicotine-induced nAChR up-regulation, and the time course of its reversal were comparable in all three areas. We also analysed the expression of glutamate receptor subunits (GluRs) and scaffold proteins, and found that it was altered in an area-specific manner during nicotine exposure and withdrawal. As the functional properties of GluRs are determined by their subunit composition, the observed changes in subunit expression may indicate alterations in the excitability of mesocorticolimbic circuitry, and this may underlie the long-term biochemical and behavioural effects of nicotine dependence.

  14. Impulsive behavior and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

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

    2012-01-01

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

  15. Conotoxins Targeting Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: An Overview

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-04-15

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Gergalova, G L; Skok, M V

    2011-01-01

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

  19. Allosteric sensitization of nicotinic receptors by galantamine, a new treatment strategy for Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Maelicke, A; Samochocki, M; Jostock, R; Fehrenbacher, A; Ludwig, J; Albuquerque, E X; Zerlin, M

    2001-02-01

    Cholinesterase inhibitors are the only approved drug treatment for patients with mild to moderately severe Alzheimer's disease. Interestingly, the clinical potency of these drugs does not correlate well with their activity as cholinesterase inhibitors, nor is their action as short lived as would be expected from purely symptomatic treatment. A few cholinesterase inhibitors, including galantamine, produce beneficial effects even after drug treatment has been terminated. These effects assume modes of action other than mere esterase inhibition and are capable of inducing systemic changes. We have recently discovered a mechanism that could account, at least in part, for the above-mentioned unexpected properties of some cholinesterase inhibitors. We have found that a subgroup of cholinesterase inhibitors, including galantamine but excluding tacrine, directly interacts with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. These compounds, named allosterically potentiating ligands, sensitize nicotinic receptors by increasing the probability of channel opening induced by acetylcholine and nicotinic agonists and by slowing down receptor desensitization. The allosterically potentiating ligand action, which is not necessarily associated with cholinesterase inhibition, has been demonstrated by whole-cell patch-clamp recordings to occur in natural murine and human neurons and in murine and human cell lines expressing various subtypes of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-06-05

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-10-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  3. Identification and characterization of novel nicotinic receptor-associated proteins in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Gottschalk, Alexander; Almedom, Ruta B; Schedletzky, Thorsten; Anderson, Scott D; Yates, John R; Schafer, William R

    2005-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) mediate fast excitatory neurotransmission in neurons and muscles. To identify nAChR accessory proteins, which may regulate their expression or function, we performed tandem affinity purification of the levamisole-sensitive nAChR from Caenorhabditis elegans, mass spectrometry of associated components, and RNAi-based screening for effects on in vivo nicotine sensitivity. Among the proteins identified was the calcineurin A subunit TAX-6, which appeared to function as a negative regulator of nAChR activity. We also identified five proteins not previously linked to nAChR function, whose inactivation conferred nicotine resistance, implicating them as positive regulators of nAChR activity. Of these, the copine NRA-1 colocalized with the levamisole receptor at neuronal and muscle plasma membranes, and, when mutated, caused reduced synaptic nAChR expression. Loss of SOC-1, which acts in receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) signaling, also reduced synaptic levamisole receptor levels, as did mutations in the fibroblast growth factor receptor EGL-15, and another RTK, CAM-1. Thus, tandem affinity purification is a viable approach to identify novel proteins regulating neurotransmitter receptor activity or expression in model systems like C. elegans. PMID:15990870

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-02-15

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

  5. The brain metabolite kynurenic acid inhibits alpha7 nicotinic receptor activity and increases non-alpha7 nicotinic receptor expression: physiopathological implications.

    PubMed

    Hilmas, C; Pereira, E F; Alkondon, M; Rassoulpour, A; Schwarcz, R; Albuquerque, E X

    2001-10-01

    The tryptophan metabolite kynurenic acid (KYNA) has long been recognized as an NMDA receptor antagonist. Here, interactions between KYNA and the nicotinic system in the brain were investigated using the patch-clamp technique and HPLC. In the electrophysiological studies, agonists were delivered via a U-shaped tube, and KYNA was applied in admixture with agonists and via the background perfusion. Exposure (>/=4 min) of cultured hippocampal neurons to KYNA (>/=100 nm) inhibited activation of somatodendritic alpha7 nAChRs; the IC(50) for KYNA was approximately 7 microm. The inhibition of alpha7 nAChRs was noncompetitive with respect to the agonist and voltage independent. The slow onset of this effect could not be accounted for by an intracellular action because KYNA (1 mm) in the pipette solution had no effect on alpha7 nAChR activity. KYNA also blocked the activity of preterminal/presynaptic alpha7 nAChRs in hippocampal neurons in cultures and in slices. NMDA receptors were less sensitive than alpha7 nAChRs to KYNA. The IC(50) values for KYNA-induced blockade of NMDA receptors in the absence and presence of glycine (10 microm) were approximately 15 and 235 microm, respectively. Prolonged (3 d) exposure of cultured hippocampal neurons to KYNA increased their nicotinic sensitivity, apparently by enhancing alpha4beta2 nAChR expression. Furthermore, as determined by HPLC with fluorescence detection, repeated systemic treatment of rats with nicotine caused a transient reduction followed by an increase in brain KYNA levels. These results demonstrate that nAChRs are targets for KYNA and suggest a functionally significant cross talk between the nicotinic cholinergic system and the kynurenine pathway in the brain.

  6. Diversity of insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits.

    PubMed

    Jones, Andrew K; Sattelle, David B

    2010-01-01

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

  7. Baclofen-induced antinociception and nicotinic receptor mechanism(s).

    PubMed

    Sabetkasai, M; Ahang, S; Shafaghi, B; Zarrindast, M R

    1999-11-01

    In this study, the influences of nicotinic receptor agents on baclofen-induced antinociception in the tail-flick test have been studied. Intraperitoneal administration of baclofen (2.5, 5 and 10 mg/kg) to mice induced a dose-dependent antinociception in the tail-flick test. Subcutaneous injection of nicotine (0.5-2.5 mg/kg) also caused a dose-dependent antinociceptive response. Intracerebral (10 and 20 microg/mouse) but not intraperitoneal administration of hexamethonium (5 and 10 mg/kg) to mice decreased the response of both nicotine and baclofen. However, administration of the GABA(B) antagonist CGP 35348 (100 and 200 mg/kg) decreased the response induced by baclofen but not by nicotine. It is concluded that at least part of the baclofen-induced antinociception may be mediated through a nicotinic mechanism.

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

    PubMed

    Kordosky-Herrera, Kaia; Grow, Wade A

    2009-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-05-01

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

  10. New quinoline derivatives as nicotinic receptor modulators.

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-03

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

  11. Lack of CB1 cannabinoid receptors modifies nicotine behavioural responses, but not nicotine abstinence.

    PubMed

    Castañé, A; Valjent, E; Ledent, C; Parmentier, M; Maldonado, R; Valverde, O

    2002-10-01

    Cannabis is the most widely consumed illicit drug and its consumption is currently associated with tobacco, which contains another psychoactive compound, namely nicotine. Interactions between cannabinoids and other drugs of abuse, such as opioids, have been previously reported. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the possible role of CB1 cannabinoid receptor in responses induced by acute and repeated nicotine administration by using knockout mice lacking the CB1 cannabinoid receptor and their wild-type littermates. Acute nicotine (0.5, 1, 3 and 6 mg/kg, sc) administration decreased locomotor activity and induced antinociceptive responses in the tail-immersion and the hot-plate test, in wild-type animals. The antinociceptive effects in the tail-immersion test were significantly enhanced in CB1 knockout mice. In wild-type mice nicotine (0.5 mg/kg, sc) produced a significant rewarding effect, as measured by a conditioned place preference paradigm. This response was absent in CB1 knockout mice. Finally, a model of mecamylamine-induced abstinence in chronic nicotine-treated mice (10 mg/kg/day, sc) was developed. Mecamylamine (1 and 2 mg/kg, sc) precipitated several somatic signs of nicotine withdrawal in wild-type dependent mice. However, no difference in the severity of nicotine withdrawal was observed in CB1 knockout mice. These results demonstrate that some acute effects and motivational responses elicited by nicotine can be modulated by the endogenous cannabinoid system and support the existence of a physiological interaction between these two systems.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  13. Smoke Extracts and Nicotine, but not Tobacco Extracts, Potentiate Firing and Burst Activity of Ventral Tegmental Area Dopaminergic Neurons in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Marti, Fabio; Arib, Ouafa; Morel, Carole; Dufresne, Virginie; Maskos, Uwe; Corringer, Pierre-Jean; de Beaurepaire, Renaud; Faure, Philippe

    2011-01-01

    Nicotine prominently mediates the behavioral effects of tobacco consumption, either through smoking or when taking tobacco by snuff or chew. However, many studies question the exclusive role of nicotine in these effects. The use of preparations containing all the components of tobacco, such as tobacco and smoke extracts, may be more suitable than nicotine alone to investigate the behavioral effects of smoking and tobacco intake. In the present study, the electrophysiological effects of tobacco and smoke on ventral tegmental area dopaminergic (DA) neurons were examined in vivo in anesthetized wild-type (WT), β2-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) knockout (β2−/−), α4−/−, and α6−/− mice and compared with those of nicotine alone. In WT mice, smoke and nicotine had similar potentiating effects on DA cell activity, but the action of tobacco on neuronal firing was weak and often inhibitory. In particular, nicotine triggered strong bursting activity, whereas no bursting activity was observed after tobacco extract (ToE) administration. In β2−/− mice, nicotine or extract elicited no modification of the firing patterns of DA cells, indicating that extract acts predominantly through nAChRs. The differences between DA cell activation profiles induced by tobacco and nicotine alone observed in WT persisted in α6−/− mice but not in α4−/− mice. These results would suggest that tobacco has lower addiction-generating properties compared with either nicotine alone or smoke. The weak activation and prominent inhibition obtained with ToEs suggest that tobacco contains compounds that counteract some of the activating effects of nicotine and promote inhibition on DA cell acting through α4β2*-nAChRs. The nature of these compounds remains to be elucidated. It nevertheless confirms that nicotine is the main substance involved in the tobacco addiction-related activation of mesolimbic DA neurons. PMID:21716264

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-05-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  16. Regulation of the distribution and function of [(125)I]epibatidine binding sites by chronic nicotine in mouse embryonic neuronal cultures.

    PubMed

    Zambrano, Cristian A; Salamander, Rakel M; Collins, Allan C; Grady, Sharon R; Marks, Michael J

    2012-08-01

    Chronic nicotine produces up-regulation of α4β2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) (* denotes that an additional subunit may be part of the receptor). However, the extent of up-regulation to persistent ligand exposure varies across brain regions. The aim of this work was to study the cellular distribution and function of nAChRs after chronic nicotine treatment in primary cultures of mouse brain neurons. Initially, high-affinity [(125)I]epibatidine binding to cell membrane homogenates from primary neuronal cultures obtained from diencephalon and hippocampus of C57BL/6J mouse embryos (embryonic days 16-18) was measured. An increase in α4β2*-nAChR binding sites was observed in hippocampus, but not in diencephalon, after 24 h of treatment with 1 μM nicotine. However, a nicotine dose-dependent up-regulation of approximately 3.5- and 0.4-fold in hippocampus and diencephalon, respectively, was found after 96 h of nicotine treatment. A significant fraction of total [(125)I]epibatidine binding sites in both hippocampus (45%) and diencephalon (65%) was located on the cell surface. Chronic nicotine (96 h) up-regulated both intracellular and surface binding in both brain regions without changing the proportion of those binding sites compared with control neurons. The increase in surface binding was not accompanied by an increase in nicotine-stimulated Ca(2+) influx, suggesting persistent desensitization or inactivation of receptors at the plasma membrane occurred. Given the differences observed between hippocampus and diencephalon neurons exposed to nicotine, multiple mechanisms may play a role in the regulation of nAChR expression and function.

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

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Qing

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Freedman, Robert

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-02-01

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

  20. Phylogenetic differences in calcium permeability of the auditory hair cell cholinergic nicotinic receptor

    PubMed Central

    Lipovsek, Marcela; Im, Gi Jung; Franchini, Lucía F.; Pisciottano, Francisco; Katz, Eleonora; Fuchs, Paul Albert; Elgoyhen, Ana Belén

    2012-01-01

    The α9 and α10 cholinergic nicotinic receptor subunits assemble to form the receptor that mediates efferent inhibition of hair cell function within the auditory sensory organ, a mechanism thought to modulate the dynamic range of hearing. In contrast to all nicotinic receptors, which serve excitatory neurotransmission, the activation of α9α10 produces hyperpolarization of hair cells. An evolutionary analysis has shown that the α10 subunit exhibits signatures of positive selection only along the mammalian lineage, strongly suggesting the acquisition of a unique function. To establish whether mammalian α9α10 receptors have acquired distinct functional properties as a consequence of this evolutionary pressure, we compared the properties of rat and chicken recombinant and native α9α10 receptors. Our main finding in the present work is that, in contrast to the high (pCa2+/pMonovalents ∼10) Ca2+ permeability reported for rat α9α10 receptors, recombinant and native chicken α9α10 receptors have a much lower permeability (∼2) to this cation, comparable to that of neuronal α4β2 receptors. Moreover, we show that, in contrast to α10, α7 as well as α4 and β2 nicotinic subunits are under purifying selection in vertebrates, consistent with the conserved Ca2+ permeability reported across species. These results have important consequences for the activation of signaling cascades that lead to hyperpolarization of hair cells after α9α10 gating at the cholinergic–hair cell synapse. In addition, they suggest that high Ca2+ permeability of the α9α10 cholinergic nicotinic receptor might have evolved together with other features that have given the mammalian ear an expanded high-frequency sensitivity. PMID:22371598

  1. MEMRI is a biomarker defining nicotine-specific neuronal responses in subregions of the rodent brain

    PubMed Central

    Bade, Aditya N; Gendelman, Howard E; Boska, Michael D; Liu, Yutong

    2017-01-01

    Nicotine dependence is defined by dopaminergic neuronal activation within the nucleus accumbens (ACB) and by affected neural projections from nicotine-stimulated neurons. Control of any subsequent neural activities would underpin any smoking cessation strategy. While extensive efforts have been made to study the pathophysiology of nicotine addiction, more limited works were developed to find imaging biomarkers. If such biomarkers are made available, addictive behaviors could be monitored noninvasively. To such ends, we employed manganese (Mn2+)-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MEMRI) to determine whether it could be used to monitor neuronal activities after acute and chronic nicotine exposure in rats. The following were observed. Mn2+ infusion identified ACB and hippocampal (HIP) neuronal activities following acute nicotine administration. Chronic exposure was achieved by week long subcutaneously implanted nicotine mini-pump. Here nicotine was shown to activate neurons in the ACB, HIP, and the prefrontal and insular cortex. These are all central nervous system reward regions linked to drug addiction. In conclusion, MEMRI is demonstrated to be a powerful imaging tool to study brain subregion specific neuronal activities affected by nicotine. Thus, we posit that MEMRI could be used to assess smoking-associated tolerance, withdrawal and as such serve as a pre-clinical screening tool for addiction cessation strategies in humans. PMID:28337287

  2. Modal gating of muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vij, Ridhima

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-05-15

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  5. Role of Central Amygdala Neuronal Ensembles in Incubation of Nicotine Craving

    PubMed Central

    Coen, Kathleen; Tamadon, Sahar; Hope, Bruce T.; Shaham, Yavin; Lê, A.D.

    2016-01-01

    The craving response to smoking-associated cues in humans or to intravenous nicotine-associated cues in adult rats progressively increases or incubates after withdrawal. Here, we further characterized incubation of nicotine craving in the rat model by determining whether this incubation is observed after adolescent-onset nicotine self-administration. We also used the neuronal activity marker Fos and the Daun02 chemogenetic inactivation procedure to identify cue-activated neuronal ensembles that mediate incubation of nicotine craving. We trained adolescent and adult male rats to self-administer nicotine (2 h/d for 12 d) and assessed cue-induced nicotine seeking in extinction tests (1 h) after 1, 7, 14, or 28 withdrawal days. In both adult and adolescent rats, nicotine seeking in the relapse tests followed an inverted U-shaped curve, with maximal responding on withdrawal day 14. Independent of the withdrawal day, nicotine seeking in the relapse tests was higher in adult than in adolescent rats. Analysis of Fos expression in different brain areas of adolescent and adult rats on withdrawal days 1 and 14 showed time-dependent increases in the number of Fos-positive neurons in central and basolateral amygdala, orbitofrontal cortex, ventral and dorsal medial prefrontal cortex, and nucleus accumbens core and shell. In adult Fos–lacZ transgenic rats, selective inactivation of nicotine-cue-activated Fos neurons in central amygdala, but not orbitofrontal cortex, decreased “incubated” nicotine seeking on withdrawal day 14. Our results demonstrate that incubation of nicotine craving occurs after adolescent-onset nicotine self-administration and that neuronal ensembles in central amygdala play a critical role in this incubation. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The craving response to smoking-associated cues in humans or to intravenous nicotine-associated cues in adult rats progressively increases or incubates after withdrawal. It is currently unknown whether incubation of craving

  6. Looking below the surface of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  7. Caenorhabditis elegans nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are required for nociception

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1990-01-01

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

  9. Mechanisms of Nicotine Addiction

    SciTech Connect

    McGehee, Daniel

    2002-06-26

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

  10. Mechanisms of Nicotine Addiction

    SciTech Connect

    McGehee, Daniel

    2009-06-26

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

  11. Regulation of the common carotid arterial blood flow by nicotinic receptors in the medulla of cats

    PubMed Central

    Gong, C-L; Chiu, Y-T; Lin, N-N; Cheng, C-C; Lin, S-Z; Lee, T J-F; Kuo, J-S

    2006-01-01

    Background and purpose: Actions of glutamate and serotonin on their respective receptors in the dorsal facial area (DFA) of the medulla are known to regulate common carotid arterial (CCA) blood flow in cats. Less is known about acetylcholine action on its nicotinic receptor (nAChR) subtypes in the DFA for regulation of CCA blood flow and this aspect was investigated. Experimental approach: Nicotinic and muscarinic agonists and antagonists were microinjected into the DFA through a three-barrel tubing in anesthetized cats. Results: CCA blood flow was dose-dependently increased by nicotine (a non-selective nAChR agonist) and choline (a selective α7-nAChR agonist). These effects of nicotine were attenuated by α-bungarotoxin (an α7-nAChR antagonist), methyllycaconitine (an α7-nAChR antagonist), mecamylamine (a relatively selective α3β4-nAChR antagonist) and dihydro-β-erythroidine (a relatively selective α4β2-nAChR antagonist). The choline-induced flow increase was attenuated by α-bungarotoxin and mecamylamine, but not by dihydro-β-erythroidine. Muscarinic agonists (muscarine and methacholine) and antagonist (atropine) affected neither the basal nor the nicotine-induced increase in the CCA blood flow. Conclusions and implications: Functional α7, α4β2, and α3β4 subunits of the nAChR appear to be present on the DFA neurons. Activations of these receptors increase the CCA blood flow. The present findings do not preclude the presence of other nAChRs subunits. Muscarinic receptors, if any, on the DFA are not involved in regulation of the CCA blood flow. Various subtypes of nAChRs in the DFA may mediate regulation of the CCA and cerebral blood flows. PMID:16894347

  12. Recombinant nicotinic receptors, expressed in Xenopus oocytes, do not resemble native rat sympathetic ganglion receptors in single-channel behaviour.

    PubMed

    Sivilotti, L G; McNeil, D K; Lewis, T M; Nassar, M A; Schoepfer, R; Colquhoun, D

    1997-04-01

    1. In order to establish the subunit composition of neuronal nicotinic receptors in rat superior cervical ganglia (SCG), their single-channel properties were compared with those of recombinant receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes, using outside-out excised patch recording. 2. The mean main conductance of SCG channels from adult and 1-day-old rats was 34.8 and 36.6 pS, respectively. Less frequent openings to lower conductances occurred both as isolated bursts and as events connected to the main level by direct transitions. There was considerable interpatch variability in the values of the lower conductances. 3. Nicotinic receptors from oocytes expressing alpha3beta4 and alpha4beta4 subunits had chord conductances lower than that of SCG neurones (22 pS for alpha3beta4 and 29 pS for alpha4beta4). 4. Prolonged recording from both native and recombinant channels was precluded by 'run-down', i.e. channel activity could be elicited for only a few minutes after excision. Nevertheless, SCG channel openings were clearly seen to occur as short bursts (slowest component, 38 ms), whereas recombinant channels opened in very prolonged bursts of activity, the major component being the slowest (480 ms). 5. Addition of the alpha5 subunit to the alpha3beta4 pair produced channels with a higher conductance than those observed after injection of the pair alone (24.9 vs. 22 pS), suggesting incorporation of alpha5 into the channel. Addition of the beta2 subunit did not change alpha3beta4 single-channel properties. In one out of fourteen alpha3alpha5beta4 patches, both ganglion-like, high conductance, short burst openings and recombinant-type, low conductance, slow burst openings were observed. 6. Channels produced by expression in Xenopus oocytes of neuronal nicotinic subunits present in rat SCG as a rule differ from native ganglion receptors in single-channel conductance and gross kinetics. While it is possible that an essential nicotinic subunit remains to be cloned, it is perhaps

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-03-11

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

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

    PubMed

    Li, Ping; Ann, Jason; Akk, Gustav

    2011-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  17. Activation of Peripheral κ-Opioid Receptors Normalizes Caffeine Effects Modified in Nicotine-Dependent Rats during Nicotine Withdrawal.

    PubMed

    Sudakov, S K; Bogdanova, N G

    2016-10-01

    The study examined the effect of peripheral (intragastric) ICI-204,448, an agonist of gastric κ-opioid receptors, on the psychostimulating and anxiolytic effects of caffeine in nicotinedependent rats at the stage of nicotine withdrawal. In these rats, the effects of caffeine (10 mg/kg) were perverted. In nicotine-dependent rats, caffeine produced an anxiolytic effect accompanied by pronounced stimulation of motor activity, in contrast to anxiogenic effect induced by caffeine in intact rats without nicotine dependence. During nicotine withdrawal, nicotine-dependent rats demonstrated enhanced sensitivity to nicotine. Intragastric administration of κ-opioid receptor agonist ICI-204,448 normalized the effect of caffeine in nicotinedependent rats. We have previously demonstrated that activation of peripheral κ-opioid receptors inhibited central κ-opioid activity and eliminated manifestations of nicotine withdrawal syndrome in nicotine-dependent rats, e.g. metabolism activation, stimulation of motor activity, and enhancement of food consumption. In its turn, inhibition of central κ-opioid structures activates the brain adenosine system, which can attenuate the caffeine-induced effects in nicotine-dependent rats.

  18. Antagonism at metabotropic glutamate 5 receptors inhibits nicotine- and cocaine-taking behaviours and prevents nicotine-triggered relapse to nicotine-seeking.

    PubMed

    Tessari, Michela; Pilla, Maria; Andreoli, Michela; Hutcheson, Daniel M; Heidbreder, Christian A

    2004-09-19

    Previous studies in metabotropic glutamate 5 receptor (mGlu5 receptor) deficient mice have indicated the importance of this receptor in the self-administration of cocaine and locomotor sensitisation to this stimulant. Both ionotropic and metabotropic receptors have been implicated in drug-seeking and drug-taking behaviours, but the specific role of each subtype of metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGlu receptors) is still unknown. In the present series of experiments we further investigated the role of mGlu5 receptors on nicotine, cocaine- and food-taking behaviour. We also investigated the effects of the mGlu5 receptor antagonist MPEP (2-methyl-6-(phenylethynyl)pyridine) on the acute locomotor activating effects of nicotine, the expression of sensitisation to its repeated, intermittent administration, and nicotine-triggered relapse to nicotine-seeking behaviour. The results indicate that MPEP treatment reduced nicotine-induced drug-seeking behaviour in a model of nicotine-triggered relapse to nicotine seeking. Furthermore, MPEP decreased both nicotine and cocaine self-administration without affecting food self-administration under similar schedules of reinforcement. Finally, MPEP reduced both the acute locomotor stimulant effects of nicotine as well as the expression of behavioural sensitisation to its repeated administration. Although the intravenous administration of MPEP at 1 and 10 mg/kg transiently reduced spontaneous locomotor activity during the first 25 min post-administration, we also demonstrated that performance on the accelerating rotarod was not affected when MPEP was given 5 and 30 min prior to the test. Altogether, the present findings strengthen the hypothesis that selective antagonism at mGlu5 receptors may be a new potential pharmacotherapeutic approach for the treatment of drug dependence and addiction.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-12-01

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

  20. Nicotinic receptors and functional regulation of GABA cell microcircuitry in bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Benes, Francine M

    2012-01-01

    Studies of the hippocampus in postmortem brains from patients with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder have provided evidence for a defect of GABAergic interneurons. Significant decreases in the expression of GAD67, a marker for GABA cell function, have been found repeatedly in several different brain regions that include the hippocampus. In this region, nicotinic receptors are thought to play an important role in modulating the activity of GABAergic interneurons by influences of excitatory cholinergic afferents on their activity. In bipolar disorder, this influence appears to be particularly prominent in the stratum oriens of sectors CA3/2 and CA1, two sites where these cells constitute the exclusive neuronal cell type. In sector CA3/2, this layer receives a robust excitatory projection from the basolateral amygdala (BLA) and this is thought to play a central role in regulating GABA cells at this locus. Using laser microdissection, recent studies have focused selectively on these two layers and their associated GABA cells using microarray technology. The results have provided support for the idea that nicotinic cholinergic receptors play a particularly important role in regulating the activity of GABA neurons at these loci by regulating the progression of cell cycle and the repair of damaged DNA. In bipolar disorder, there is a prominent reduction in the expression of mRNAs for several different nicotinic subunit isoforms. These decreases could reflect a diminished influence of this receptor system on these GABA cells, particularly in sector CA3/2 where a preponderance of abnormalities have been observed in postmortem studies. In patients with bipolar disorder, excitatory nicotinic cholinergic fibers from the medial septum may converge with glutamatergic fibers from the BLA on GABAergic interneurons in the stratum oriens of CA3/2 and result in disturbances of their genomic and functional integrity, ones that may induce disruptions of the integration of

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

    PubMed Central

    Maggi, Laura; Sher, Emanuele; Cherubini, Enrico

    2001-01-01

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

  2. The neuronal pathways mediating the behavioral and addictive properties of nicotine.

    PubMed

    Balfour, David J K

    2009-01-01

    This chapter considers the neurobiological mechanisms that are thought to mediate the reinforcing or rewarding properties of nicotine. It focuses on the data (derived principally from studies with experimental animals) showing that nicotine, like other drugs of dependence, stimulates the mesolimbic dopamine (DA) neurones that project to the nucleus accumbens and that these effects play a pivotal role in the biology underlying nicotine dependence. The reinforcing or rewarding properties of nicotine are thought to be associated particularly with the increase in DA overflow evoked in the shell subdivision of the accumbens. However, behavioural studies suggest that these properties of nicotine in experimental animals do not seem to be sufficiently potent to explain the powerful addiction to tobacco experienced by most habitual smokers. This chapter also considers the biological mechanisms that mediate the effects of cues and stimuli associated with the presentation of nicotine, which are thought to contribute significantly to the powerful addictive properties of tobacco smoke.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-03-01

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

  4. Contribution of α7 nicotinic receptor to airway epithelium dysfunction under nicotine exposure.

    PubMed

    Maouche, Kamel; Medjber, Kahina; Zahm, Jean-Marie; Delavoie, Franck; Terryn, Christine; Coraux, Christelle; Pons, Stéphanie; Cloëz-Tayarani, Isabelle; Maskos, Uwe; Birembaut, Philippe; Tournier, Jean-Marie

    2013-03-05

    Loss or dysfunction of the cystic fibrosis (CF) transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) leads to impairment of airway mucus transport and to chronic lung diseases resulting in progressive respiratory failure. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) bind nicotine and nicotine-derived nitrosamines and thus mediate many of the tobacco-related deleterious effects in the lung. Here we identify α7 nAChR as a key regulator of CFTR in the airways. The airway epithelium in α7 knockout mice is characterized by a higher transepithelial potential difference, an increase of amiloride-sensitive apical Na(+) absorption, a defective cAMP-dependent Cl(-) conductance, higher concentrations of Na(+), Cl(-), K(+), and Ca(2+) in secretions, and a decreased mucus transport, all relevant to a deficient CFTR activity. Moreover, prolonged nicotine exposure mimics the absence of α7 nAChR in mice or its inactivation in vitro in human airway epithelial cell cultures. The functional coupling of α7 nAChR to CFTR occurs through Ca(2+) entry and activation of adenylyl cyclases, protein kinase A, and PKC. α7 nAChR, CFTR, and adenylyl cyclase-1 are physically and functionally associated in a macromolecular complex within lipid rafts at the apical membrane of surface and glandular airway epithelium. This study establishes the potential role of α7 nAChR in the regulation of CFTR function and in the pathogenesis of smoking-related chronic lung diseases.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2013-02-01

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

  6. Effects of nicotinic and NMDA receptor channel blockers on intravenous cocaine and nicotine self-administration in mice.

    PubMed

    Blokhina, Elena A; Kashkin, Vladimir A; Zvartau, Edwin E; Danysz, Wojciech; Bespalov, Anton Y

    2005-03-01

    Previous studies have indicated that blockade of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) subtype of glutamate receptors prevents acquisition of instrumental behaviors reinforced by food and drugs such as morphine and cocaine. The present study aimed to extend this evidence by testing whether NMDA receptor channel blocker, memantine, would exert similar effects on acquisition of cocaine and nicotine self-administration in mice. Inasmuch as memantine also acts as nicotinic receptor channel blocker, this study assessed the effects of mecamylamine and MRZ 2/621 that are more selective nicotinic blockers. Adult male Swiss mice were allowed to self-administer cocaine (0.8-2.4 microg/infusion) or nicotine (0.08-0.32 microg/infusion) during the 30-min test. Pretreatment with memantine (0.1-10 mg/kg) prevented acquisition of nicotine but not cocaine self-administration. Pretreatment with mecamylamine (0.3-3 mg/kg) and MRZ 2/621 (0.3-10 mg/kg) produced dose-dependent suppression of both cocaine and nicotine self-administration. Taken together with the previous reports, these results indicate that nicotinic receptor blockers antagonize acute reinforcing effects of cocaine while NMDA receptor blockade may have limited effectiveness.

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-06-01

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

  9. Cholinergic nicotinic receptor genes implicated in a nicotine dependence association study targeting 348 candidate genes with 3713 SNPs

    PubMed Central

    Saccone, Scott F.; Hinrichs, Anthony L.; Saccone, Nancy L.; Chase, Gary A.; Konvicka, Karel; Madden, Pamela A.F.; Breslau, Naomi; Johnson, Eric O.; Hatsukami, Dorothy; Pomerleau, Ovide; Swan, Gary E.; Goate, Alison M.; Rutter, Joni; Bertelsen, Sarah; Fox, Louis; Fugman, Douglas; Martin, Nicholas G.; Montgomery, Grant W.; Wang, Jen C.; Ballinger, Dennis G.; Rice, John P.; Bierut, Laura Jean

    2007-01-01

    Nicotine dependence is one of the world’s leading causes of preventable death. To discover genetic variants that influence risk for nicotine dependence, we targeted over 300 candidate genes and analyzed 3713 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 1050 cases and 879 controls. The Fagerström test for nicotine dependence (FTND) was used to assess dependence, in which cases were required to have an FTND of 4 or more. The control criterion was strict: control subjects must have smoked at least 100 cigarettes in their lifetimes and had an FTND of 0 during the heaviest period of smoking. After correcting for multiple testing by controlling the false discovery rate, several cholinergic nicotinic receptor genes dominated the top signals. The strongest association was from an SNP representing CHRNB3, the β3 nicotinic receptor subunit gene (P = 9.4 × 10−5). Biologically, the most compelling evidence for a risk variant came from a non-synonymous SNP in the α5 nicotinic receptor subunit gene CHRNA5 (P = 6.4 × 10−4). This SNP exhibited evidence of a recessive mode of inheritance, resulting in individuals having a 2-fold increase in risk of developing nicotine dependence once exposed to cigarette smoking. Other genes among the top signals were KCNJ6 and GABRA4. This study represents one of the most powerful and extensive studies of nicotine dependence to date and has found novel risk loci that require confirmation by replication studies. PMID:17135278

  10. High-affinity α4β2 nicotinic receptors mediate the impairing effects of acute nicotine on contextual fear extinction.

    PubMed

    Kutlu, Munir Gunes; Holliday, Erica; Gould, Thomas J

    2016-02-01

    Previously, studies from our lab have shown that while acute nicotine administered prior to training and testing enhances contextual fear conditioning, acute nicotine injections prior to extinction sessions impair extinction of contextual fear. Although there is also strong evidence showing that the acute nicotine's enhancing effects on contextual fear conditioning require high-affinity α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), it is unknown which nAChR subtypes are involved in the acute nicotine-induced impairment of contextual fear extinction. In this study, we investigated the effects of acute nicotine administration on contextual fear extinction in knock-out (KO) mice lacking α4, β2 or α7 subtypes of nAChRs and their wild-type (WT) littermates. Both KO and WT mice were first trained and tested for contextual fear conditioning and received a daily contextual extinction session for 4 days. Subjects received intraperitoneal injections of nicotine (0.18 mg/kg) or saline 2-4 min prior to each extinction session. Our results showed that the mice that lack α4 and β2 subtypes of nAChRs showed normal contextual fear extinction but not the acute nicotine-induced impairment while the mice that lack the α7 subtype showed both normal contextual extinction and nicotine-induced impairment of contextual extinction. In addition, control experiments showed that acute nicotine-induced impairment of contextual fear extinction persisted when nicotine administration was ceased and repeated acute nicotine administrations alone did not induce freezing behavior in the absence of context-shock learning. These results clearly demonstrate that high-affinity α4β2 nAChRs are necessary for the effects of acute nicotine on contextual fear extinction.

  11. Prenatal nicotine exposure alters the responses to subsequent nicotine administration and withdrawal in adolescence: Serotonin receptors and cell signaling.

    PubMed

    Slotkin, Theodore A; Tate, Charlotte A; Cousins, Mandy M; Seidler, Frederic J

    2006-11-01

    Offspring of women who smoke during pregnancy are themselves more likely to take up smoking in adolescence, effects that are associated with a high rate of depression and increased sensitivity to withdrawal symptoms. To evaluate the biological basis for this relationship, we assessed effects on serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5HT) receptors and 5HT-mediated cellular responses in rats exposed to nicotine throughout prenatal development and then given nicotine in adolescence (postnatal days PN30-47.5), using regimens that reproduce plasma nicotine levels found in smokers. Evaluations were then made during the period of adolescent nicotine treatment and for up to one month after the end of treatment. Prenatal nicotine exposure, which elicits damage to 5HT projections in the cerebral cortex and striatum, produced sex-selective changes in the expression of 5HT(1A) and 5HT2 receptors, along with induction of adenylyl cyclase (AC), leading to sensitization of heterologous inputs operating through this signaling pathway. Superimposed on these effects, the AC response to 5HT was shifted toward inhibition. By itself, adolescent nicotine administration, which damages the same pathways, produced similar effects on receptors and the 5HT-mediated response, but a smaller overall induction of AC. Animals exposed to prenatal nicotine showed a reduced response to nicotine administered in adolescence, results in keeping with earlier findings of persistent desensitization. Our results indicate that prenatal nicotine exposure alters parameters of 5HT synaptic communication lasting into adolescence and changes the response to nicotine administration and withdrawal in adolescence, actions which may contribute to a subpopulation especially vulnerable to nicotine dependence.

  12. BLOCKING CANNABINOID CB1 RECEPTORS FOR THE TREATMENT OF NICOTINE DEPENDENCE: INSIGHTS FROM PRECLINICAL AND CLINICAL STUDIES

    PubMed Central

    Le Foll, Bernard; Forget, Benoit; Aubin, Henri-Jean; Goldberg, Steven R.

    2009-01-01

    Tobacco use is one of the leading preventable causes of death in developed countries. Since existing medications are only partially effective in treating tobacco smokers, there is a great need for improved medications for smoking cessation. It has been recently proposed that cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonists represent a new class of therapeutic agents for drug dependence, and, notably, nicotine dependence. Here, we will review current evidence supporting the use of this class of drugs for smoking cessation treatment. Preclinical studies indicate that nicotine exposure produces changes in endocannabinoid content in the brain. In experimental animals, Rimonabant (SR141716) and AM251, two cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonists, block nicotine self-administration behavior, an effect that may be related to the blockade of the dopamine-releasing effects of nicotine in the brain. Rimonabant also seems efficacious in decreasing the influence of nicotine-associated stimuli over behavior, suggesting that it may act on two distinct neuronal pathways, those implicated in drug-taking behavior and those involved in relapse phenomena. The utility of Rimonabant has been evaluated in several clinical trials. It seems that Rimonabant is an efficacious treatment for smoking cessation, although its efficacy doesn’t exceed that of nicotine replacement therapy and its use may be limited by emotional side effects (nausea, anxiety and depression, mostly). Rimonabant also appears to decrease relapse rates in smokers. These findings indicate significant, but limited, utility of Rimonabant for smoking cessation. PMID:18482433

  13. Reduced G-protein coupling to the GABAB receptor in the nucleus accumbens and the medial prefrontal cortex of the rat after chronic treatment with nicotine.

    PubMed

    Amantea, Diana; Tessari, Michela; Bowery, Norman G

    2004-01-30

    The effect of repeated administration of nicotine (0.4 mg/kg, daily, s.c., for 14 days) on GABAB receptor density, affinity and G-protein coupling was investigated in the mesocorticolimbic system of the rat brain. Baclofen-stimulated [35S]GTPgammaS binding autoradiography revealed that the level of G-protein coupling to GABAB receptors was significantly reduced in the medial prefrontal cortex and the nucleus accumbens of nicotine-treated rats as compared to vehicle-injected controls. By contrast, GABAB receptor density and affinity, as revealed by [3H]GABA saturation binding autoradiography, were not altered by the nicotine exposure in any of the regions examined. Reduced G-protein coupling to the GABAB receptor may result in disinhibition of mesocorticolimbic dopaminergic neurones, which would contribute to the development of sensitised dopaminergic responses to repeated administration of nicotine.

  14. Contribution of α4β2 nAChR in nicotine-induced intracellular calcium response and excitability of MSDB neurons.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jiangang; Wang, Yali; Wang, Yang; Wang, Ran; Zhang, Yunpeng; Zhang, Qian; Lu, Chengbiao

    2014-12-10

    The neurons of medial septal diagonal band of broca (MSDB) project to hippocampus and play an important role in MSDB-hippocampal synaptic transmission, plasticity and network oscillation. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits, α4β2 and α7 nAChRs, are expressed in MSDB neurons and permeable to calcium ions, which may modulate the function of MSDB neurons. The aims of this study are to determine the roles of selective nAChR activation on the calcium responses and membrane currents in MSDB neurons. Our results showed that nicotine increased calcium responses in the majority of MSDB neurons, pre-treatment of MSDB slices with a α4β2 nAChR antagonist, DhβE but not a α7 nAChR antagonist, MLA prevented nicotine-induced calcium responses. The whole cell patch clamp recordings showed that nicotine-induced inward current and acetylcholine (ACh) induced-firing activity can be largely reduced or prevented by DhβE in MSDB neurons. Surprisingly, post-treatment of α4β2 or α7 nAChR antagonists failed to block nicotine׳s role, they increased calcium responses instead. Application of calcium chelator EGTA reduced calcium responses in all neurons tested. These results suggest that there was a subtype specific modulation of nAChRs on calcium signaling and membrane currents in MSDB neurons and nAChR antagonists were also able to induce calcium responses involving a distinct mechanism.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1986-03-05

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-03-07

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

  18. Differential regulation of alpha7 nicotinic receptor gene (CHRNA7) expression in schizophrenic smokers.

    PubMed

    Mexal, Sharon; Berger, Ralph; Logel, Judy; Ross, Randal G; Freedman, Robert; Leonard, Sherry

    2010-01-01

    The alpha7 neuronal nicotinic receptor gene (CHRNA7) has been implicated in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia by genetic and pharmacological studies. Expression of the alpha7* receptor, as measured by [(125)I]alpha-bungarotoxin autoradiography, is decreased in postmortem brain of schizophrenic subjects compared to non-mentally ill controls. Most schizophrenic patients are heavy smokers, with high levels of serum cotinine. Smoking changes the expression of multiple genes and differentially regulates gene expression in schizophrenic hippocampus. We examined the effects of smoking on CHRNA7 expression in the same tissue and find that smoking differentially regulates expression of both mRNA and protein for this gene. CHRNA7 mRNA and protein levels are significantly lower in schizophrenic nonsmokers compared to control nonsmokers and are brought to control levels in schizophrenic smokers. Sufficient protein but low surface expression of the alpha7* receptor, seen in the autoradiographic studies, suggests aberrant assembly or trafficking of the receptor.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    Developmental nicotine exposure causes persistent changes in cortical neuron morphology and in behavior. We used microarray screening to identify master transcriptional or epigenetic regulators mediating these effects of nicotine and discovered increases in Ash2l, a component of a histone methyltransferase complex. We therefore examined genome-wide changes in H3K4 tri-methylation, a mark induced by the Ash2l complex associated with increased gene transcription. A significant number of regulated promoter sites were involved in synapse maintenance. We found that Mef2c interacts with Ash2l and mediates changes in H3K4 tri-methylation. Knockdown of Ash2l or Mef2c abolishes nicotine-mediated alterations of dendritic complexity in vitro and in vivo, and attenuates nicotine-dependent changes in passive avoidance behavior. In contrast, overexpression mimics nicotine-mediated alterations of neuronal structure and passive avoidance behavior. These studies identify Ash2l as a novel target induced by nicotinic stimulation that couples developmental nicotine exposure to changes in brain epigenetic marks, neuronal structure and behavior. PMID:27239938

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-09

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

  3. (-)-Spiro[1-azabicyclo[2.2.2]octane-3,5'-oxazolidin-2'-one], a conformationally restricted analogue of acetylcholine, is a highly selective full agonist at the alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Mullen, G; Napier, J; Balestra, M; DeCory, T; Hale, G; Macor, J; Mack, R; Loch, J; Wu, E; Kover, A; Verhoest, P; Sampognaro, A; Phillips, E; Zhu, Y; Murray, R; Griffith, R; Blosser, J; Gurley, D; Machulskis, A; Zongrone, J; Rosen, A; Gordon, J

    2000-11-02

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are members of the ligand-gated ion channel receptor superfamily and may play important roles in modulating neurotransmission, cognition, sensory gating, and anxiety. Because of its distribution and abundance in the CNS, the alpha 7 nicotinic receptor is a strong candidate to be involved in some of these functions. In this paper we describe the synthesis and in vitro profile of AR-R17779, (-)-spiro[1-azabicyclo[2.2. 2]octane-3,5'-oxazolidin-2'-one] (4a), a potent full agonist at the rat alpha 7 nicotinic receptor, which is highly selective for the rat alpha 7 nicotinic receptor over the alpha 4 beta 2 subtype. Preliminary SAR of AR-R17779 presented here indicate that there is little scope for modification of this rigid molecule as even minor changes result in significant loss of the alpha 7 nicotinic receptor affinity.

  4. Competitive antagonism between the nicotinic allosteric potentiating ligand galantamine and kynurenic acid at alpha7* nicotinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Lopes, Cristiane; Pereira, Edna F R; Wu, Hui-Qiu; Purushottamachar, Puranik; Njar, Vincent; Schwarcz, Robert; Albuquerque, Edson X

    2007-07-01

    Galantamine, a drug used to treat Alzheimer's disease, is a nicotinic allosteric potentiating ligand, and kynurenic acid (KYNA), a neuroactive metabolite of the kynurenine pathway, is an endogenous noncompetitive inhibitor of alpha7* nicotinic receptors (nAChRs) [the asterisk next to the nAChR subunit is intended to indicate that the exact subunit composition of the receptor is not known (Pharmacol Rev 51:397-401, 1999)]. Here, possible interactions between KYNA and galantamine at alpha7* nAChRs were examined in vitro and in vivo. In the presence of tetrodotoxin (TTX), approximately 85% of cultured hippocampal neurons responded to choline (0.3-30 mM) with alpha7* nAChR-subserved whole-cell (type IA) currents. In the absence of TTX and in the presence of glutamate receptor antagonists, choline triggered inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) by activating alpha7* nAChRs on GABAergic neurons synapsing onto the neurons under study. Galantamine (1-10 microM) potentiated, whereas KYNA (10 nM-1 mM) inhibited, choline-triggered responses. Galantamine (1 microM), applied before KYNA, shifted to the right the concentration-response relationship for KYNA to inhibit type IA currents, increasing the IC(50) of KYNA from 13.9 +/- 8.3 to 271 +/- 131 microM. Galantamine, applied before or after KYNA, antagonized inhibition of choline-triggered IPSCs by KYNA. Local infusion of KYNA (100 nM) in the rat striatum reduced extracellular dopamine levels in vivo. This effect resulted from alpha7* nAChR inhibition and was blocked by coapplied galantamine (1-5 microM). It is concluded that galantamine competitively antagonizes the actions of KYNA on alpha7* nAChRs. Reducing alpha7* nAChR inhibition by endogenous KYNA may be an important determinant of the effectiveness of galantamine in neurological and psychiatric disorders associated with decreased alpha7* nAChR activity in the brain.

  5. Primary Structure of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-11-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1991-09-01

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

  8. Nicotine and ethanol activate protein kinase A synergistically via G(i) betagamma subunits in nucleus accumbens/ventral tegmental cocultures: the role of dopamine D(1)/D(2) and adenosine A(2A) receptors.

    PubMed

    Inoue, Yuichiro; Yao, Lina; Hopf, F Woodward; Fan, Peidong; Jiang, Zhan; Bonci, Antonello; Diamond, Ivan

    2007-07-01

    Tobacco and alcohol are the most commonly used drugs of abuse and show the most serious comorbidity. The mesolimbic dopamine system contributes significantly to nicotine and ethanol reinforcement, but the underlying cellular signaling mechanisms are poorly understood. Nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptors are highly expressed on ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine neurons, with relatively low expression in nucleus accumbens (NAcb) neurons. Because dopamine receptors D(1) and D(2) are highly expressed on NAcb neurons, nicotine could influence NAcb neurons indirectly by activating VTA neurons to release dopamine in the NAcb. To investigate this possibility in vitro, we established primary cultures containing neurons from VTA or NAcb separately or in cocultures. Nicotine increased cAMP response element-mediated gene expression only in cocultures; this increase was blocked by nACh or dopamine D(1) or D(2) receptor antagonists. Furthermore, subthreshold concentrations of nicotine with ethanol increased gene expression in cocultures, and this increase was blocked by nACh, D(2) or adenosine A(2A) receptor antagonists, Gbetagamma or protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitors, and adenosine deaminase. These results suggest that nicotine activated VTA neurons, causing the release of dopamine, which in turn stimulated both D(1) and D(2) receptors on NAcb neurons. In addition, subthreshold concentrations of nicotine and ethanol in combination also activated NAcb neurons through synergy between D(2) and A(2A) receptors. These data provide a novel cellular mechanism, involving Gbetagamma subunits, A(2A) receptors, and PKA, whereby combined use of tobacco and alcohol could enhance the reinforcing effect in humans as well as facilitate long-term neuroadaptations, increasing the risk for developing coaddiction.

  9. cAMP-dependent protein kinase inhibits α7 nicotinic receptor activity in layer 1 cortical interneurons through activation of D1/D5 dopamine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Komal, Pragya; Estakhr, Jasem; Kamran, Melad; Renda, Anthony; Nashmi, Raad

    2015-01-01

    Phosphorylation of ion channels, including nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), by protein kinases plays a key role in the modification of synaptic transmission and neuronal excitability. α7 nAChRs are the second most prevalent nAChR subtype in the CNS following α4β2. Serine 365 in the M3–M4 cytoplasmic loop of the α7 nAChR is a phosphorylation site for protein kinase A (PKA). D1/D5 dopamine receptors signal through the adenylate cyclase–PKA pathway and play a key role in working memory and attention in the prefrontal cortex. Thus, we examined whether the dopaminergic system, mediated through PKA, functionally interacts with the α7-dependent cholinergic neurotransmission. In layer 1 interneurons of mouse prefrontal cortex, α7 nicotinic currents were decreased upon stimulation with 8-Br-cAMP, a PKA activator. In HEK 293T cells, dominant negative PKA abolished 8-Br-cAMP's effect of diminishing α7 nicotinic currents, while a constitutively active PKA catalytic subunit decreased α7 currents. In brain slices, the PKA inhibitor KT-5720 nullified 8-Br-cAMP's effect of attenuating α7 nicotinic responses, while applying a PKA catalytic subunit in the pipette solution decreased α7 currents. 8-Br-cAMP stimulation reduced surface expression of α7 nAChRs, but there was no change in single-channel conductance. The D1/D5 dopamine receptor agonist SKF 83822 similarly attenuated α7 nicotinic currents from layer 1 interneurons and this attenuation of nicotinic current was prevented by KT-5720. These results demonstrate that dopamine receptor-mediated activation of PKA negatively modulates nicotinic neurotransmission in prefrontal cortical interneurons, which may be a contributing mechanism of dopamine modulation of cognitive behaviours such as attention or working memory. PMID:25990637

  10. The development of nicotinic receptors in the human medulla oblongata: inter-relationship with the serotonergic system.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Jhodie R; Paterson, David S; Kinney, Hannah C

    2008-12-15

    Maternal cigarette smoking during pregnancy adversely affects fetal development and increases the risk for the sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). In SIDS we have reported abnormalities in the medullary serotonergic (5-HT) system, which is vital for homeostatic control. In this study we analyzed the inter-relationship between nicotinic receptors (nAChRs), to which nicotine in cigarette smoke bind, and the medullary 5-HT system in the human fetus and infant as a step towards determining the mechanisms whereby smoking increases SIDS risk in infants with 5-HT defects. Immunohistochemistry for the alpha4 nAChR subunit and 5-HT neurons was applied in fetal and infant medullae (15-92 postconceptional weeks, n=9). The distribution of different nAChRs was determined from 39-82 postconceptional weeks (n=5) using tissue autoradiography for 3H-nicotine, 3H-epibatidine, 3H-cytisine, and 125I-bungarotoxin; the findings were compared to laboratory 5-HT1A and 5-HT transporter binding data, and 5-HT neuronal density. Alpha4 immunoreactivity was ubiquitously expressed in medullary nuclei related to homeostatic functions from 15 weeks on, including rhombic lip germinal cells. At all ages, alpha4 co-localized with 5-HT neurons, indicating a potential site of interaction whereby exogenous nicotine may adversely affect 5-HT neuronal development and function. Binding for heteromeric nAChRs was highest in the inferior olive, and for homomeric nAChRs, in the vagal complex. In the paragigantocellularis lateralis, 5-HT1A receptor binding simultaneously increased as alpha7 binding decreased across infancy. This study indicates parallel dynamic and complex changes in the medullary nicotinic and 5-HT systems throughout early life, i.e., the period of risk for SIDS.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  12. Age-related changes in nicotine response of cholinergic and non-cholinergic laterodorsal tegmental neurons: implications for the heightened adolescent susceptibility to nicotine addiction.

    PubMed

    Christensen, Mark H; Ishibashi, Masaru; Nielsen, Michael L; Leonard, Christopher S; Kohlmeier, Kristi A

    2014-10-01

    The younger an individual starts smoking, the greater the likelihood that addiction to nicotine will develop, suggesting that neurobiological responses vary across age to the addictive component of cigarettes. Cholinergic neurons of the laterodorsal tegmental nucleus (LDT) are importantly involved in the development of addiction, however, the effects of nicotine on LDT neuronal excitability across ontogeny are unknown. Nicotinic effects on LDT cells across different age groups were examined using calcium imaging and whole-cell patch clamping. Within the youngest age group (P7-P15), nicotine induced larger intracellular calcium transients and inward currents. Nicotine induced a greater number of excitatory synaptic currents in the youngest animals, whereas larger amplitude inhibitory synaptic events were induced in cells from the oldest animals (P15-P34). Nicotine increased neuronal firing of cholinergic cells to a greater degree in younger animals, possibly linked to development associated differences found in nicotinic effects on action potential shape and afterhyperpolarization. We conclude that in addition to age-associated alterations of several properties expected to affect resting cell excitability, parameters affecting cell excitability are altered by nicotine differentially across ontogeny. Taken together, our data suggest that nicotine induces a larger excitatory response in cholinergic LDT neurons from the youngest animals, which could result in a greater excitatory output from these cells to target regions involved in development of addiction. Such output would be expected to be promotive of addiction; therefore, ontogenetic differences in nicotine-mediated increases in the excitability of the LDT could contribute to the differential susceptibility to nicotine addiction seen across age.

  13. Age-related changes in nicotine response of cholinergic and non-cholinergic laterodorsal tegmental neurons: implications for the heightened adolescent susceptibility to nicotine addiction

    PubMed Central

    Christensen, Mark H.; Ishibashi, Masaru; Nielsen, Michael L.; Leonard, Christopher S.; Kohlmeier, Kristi A.

    2015-01-01

    The younger an individual starts smoking, the greater the likelihood that addiction to nicotine will develop, suggesting that neurobiological responses vary across age to the addictive component of cigarettes. Cholinergic neurons of the laterodorsal tegmental nucleus (LDT) are importantly involved in the development of addiction, however, the effects of nicotine on LDT neuronal excitability across ontogeny are unknown. Nicotinic effects on several parameters affecting LDT cells across different age groups were examined using calcium imaging and whole-cell patch clamping. Within the youngest age group (P7-P15), nicotine was found to induce larger intracellular calcium transients and inward currents. Nicotine induced a greater number of excitatory synaptic currents in the youngest animals, whereas larger amplitude inhibitory synaptic events were induced in cells from the oldest animals (P15-P34). Nicotine increased neuronal firing of cholinergic cells to a greater degree in younger animals, possibly linked to development associated differences found in nicotinic effects on action potential shape and afterhyperpolarization. We conclude that in addition to age-associated alterations of several properties expected to affect resting cell excitability, parameters affecting cell excitability are altered by nicotine differentially across ontogeny. Taken together, our data suggest that nicotine induces a larger excitatory response in cholinergic LDT neurons from the youngest animals, which could result in a greater excitatory output from these cells to target regions involved in development of addiction. Such output would be expected to be promotive of addiction; therefore, ontogenetic differences in nicotine-mediated increases in the excitability of the LDT could contribute to the differential susceptibility to nicotine addiction seen across age. PMID:24863041

  14. The dual orexin receptor antagonist TCS1102 does not affect reinstatement of nicotine-seeking

    PubMed Central

    McNally, Gavan P.; Clemens, Kelly J.

    2017-01-01

    The orexin/hypocretin system is important for appetitive motivation towards multiple drugs of abuse, including nicotine. Both OX1 and OX2 receptors individually have been shown to influence nicotine self-administration and reinstatement. Due to the increasing clinical use of dual orexin receptor antagonists in the treatment of disorders such as insomnia, we examined whether a dual orexin receptor antagonist may also be effective in reducing nicotine seeking. We tested the effect of intracerebroventricular (i.c.v.) administration of the potent and selective dual orexin receptor antagonist TCS1102 on orexin-A-induced food self-administration, nicotine self-administration and reinstatement of nicotine-seeking in rats. Our results show that 30 μg of TCS1102 i.c.v. abolishes orexin-A-induced increases in food self-administration but does not reduce nicotine self-administration. Neither i.c.v. 10 μg nor 30 μg of TCS1102 reduced compound reinstatement after short-term (15 days) self-administration nicotine, but 30 μg transiently reduced cue/nicotine compound reinstatement after chronic self-administration (29 days). These results indicate that TCS1102 has no substantial effect on motivation for nicotine seeking following chronic self-administration and no effect after shorter periods of intake. Orexin receptor antagonists may therefore have little clinical utility against nicotine addiction. PMID:28296947

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Rossman, Amanda C

    2011-10-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  18. Ethanol-Induced Motor Impairment Mediated by Inhibition of α7 Nicotinic Receptors

    PubMed Central

    McDaid, John; Abburi, Chandrika; Wolfman, Shannon L.; Gallagher, Keith

    2016-01-01

    Nicotine and ethanol (EtOH) are among the most widely co-abused substances, and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) contribute to the behavioral effects of both drugs. Along with their role in addiction, nAChRs also contribute to motor control circuitry. The α7 nAChR subtype is highly expressed in the laterodorsal tegmental nucleus (LDTg), a brainstem cholinergic center that contributes to motor performance through its projections to thalamic motor relay centers, including the mediodorsal thalamus. We demonstrate that EtOH concentrations just above the legal limits for intoxication in humans can inhibit α7 nAChRs in LDTg neurons from rats. This EtOH-induced inhibition is mediated by a decrease in cAMP/PKA signaling. The α7 nAChR-positive allosteric modulator PNU120596 [N-(5-chloro-2,4-dimethoxyphenyl)-N′-(5-methyl-3-isoxazolyl)-urea], which interferes with receptor desensitization, completely eliminated EtOH modulation of these receptors. These data suggest that EtOH inhibits α7 responses through a PKA-dependent enhancement of receptor desensitization. EtOH also inhibited the effects of nicotine at presynaptic α7 nAChRs on glutamate terminals in the mediodorsal thalamus. In vivo administration of PNU120596 either into the cerebral ventricles or directly into the mediodorsal thalamus attenuated EtOH-induced motor impairment. Thus, α7 nAChRs are likely important mediators of the motor impairing effects of moderate EtOH consumption. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The motor-impairing effects of ethanol contribute to intoxication-related injury and death. Here we explore the cellular and neural circuit mechanisms underlying ethanol-induced motor impairment. Physiologically relevant concentrations of ethanol inhibit activity of a nicotinic receptor subtype that is expressed in brain areas associated with motor control. That receptor inhibition is mediated by decreased receptor phosphorylation, suggesting an indirect modulation of cell signaling pathways to achieve

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-03-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2017-01-01

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

  2. The nicotinic receptor in the rat pineal gland is an alpha3beta4 subtype.

    PubMed

    Hernandez, Susan C; Vicini, Stefano; Xiao, Yingxian; Dávila-García, Martha I; Yasuda, Robert P; Wolfe, Barry B; Kellar, Kenneth J

    2004-10-01

    The rat pineal gland contains a high density of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). We characterized the pharmacology of the binding sites and function of these receptors, measured the nAChR subunit mRNA, and used subunit-specific antibodies to establish the receptor subtype as defined by subunit composition. In ligand binding studies, [3H]epibatidine ([3H]EB) binds with an affinity of approximately 100 pM to nAChRs in the pineal gland, and the density of these sites is approximately 5 times that in rat cerebral cortex. The affinities of nicotinic drugs for binding sites in the pineal gland are similar to those at alpha3beta4 nAChRs heterologously expressed in human embryonic kidney 293 cells. In functional studies, the potencies and efficacies of nicotinic drugs to activate or block whole-cell currents in dissociated pinealocytes match closely their potencies and efficacies to activate or block 86Rb+ efflux in the cells expressing heterologous alpha3beta4 nAChRs. Measurements of mRNA indicated the presence of transcripts for alpha3, beta2, and beta4 nAChR subunits but not those for alpha2, alpha4, alpha5, alpha6, alpha7, or beta3 subunits. Immunoprecipitation with subunit-specific antibodies showed that virtually all [3H]EB-labeled nAChRs contained alpha3 and beta4 subunits associated in one complex. The beta2 subunit was not associated with this complex. Taken together, these results indicate that virtually all of the nAChRs in the rat pineal gland are the alpha3beta4 nAChR subtype and that the pineal gland can therefore serve as an excellent and convenient model in which to study the pharmacology and function of these receptors in a native tissue.

  3. Scopolamine administration modulates muscarinic, nicotinic and NMDA receptor systems.

    PubMed

    Falsafi, Soheil Keihan; Deli, Alev; Höger, Harald; Pollak, Arnold; Lubec, Gert

    2012-01-01

    Studies on the effect of scopolamine on memory are abundant but so far only regulation of the muscarinic receptor (M1) has been reported. We hypothesized that levels of other cholinergic brain receptors as the nicotinic receptors and the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor, known to be involved in memory formation, would be modified by scopolamine administration.C57BL/6J mice were used for the experiments and divided into four groups. Two groups were given scopolamine 1 mg/kg i.p. (the first group was trained and the second group untrained) in the multiple T-maze (MTM), a paradigm for evaluation of spatial memory. Likewise, vehicle-treated mice were trained or untrained thus serving as controls. Hippocampal levels of M1, nicotinic receptor alpha 4 (Nic4) and 7 (Nic7) and subunit NR1containing complexes were determined by immunoblotting on blue native gel electrophoresis.Vehicle-treated trained mice learned the task and showed memory retrieval on day 8, while scopolamine-treatment led to significant impairment of performance in the MTM. At the day of retrieval, hippocampal levels for M1, Nic7 and NR1 were higher in the scopolamine treated groups than in vehicle-treated groups.The concerted action, i.e. the pattern of four brain receptor complexes regulated by the anticholinergic compound scopolamine, is shown. Insight into probable action mechanisms of scopolamine at the brain receptor complex level in the hippocampus is provided. Scopolamine treatment is a standard approach to test cognitive enhancers and other psychoactive compounds in pharmacological studies and therefore knowledge on mechanisms is of pivotal interest.

  4. Cat carotid body chemoreceptor responses before and after nicotine receptor blockade with alpha-bungarotoxin.

    PubMed

    Mulligan, E; Lahiri, S

    1987-01-01

    The nature of nicotine receptors in the carotid body was studied in anesthetized, paralyzed and artificially ventilated cats. Chemoreceptor discharge in single or few-fiber preparations of the carotid sinus nerve was measured during isocapnic hypoxia, hyperoxic hypercapnia and in response to nicotine injections before and after administration of alpha-bungarotoxin (10 cats) and after alpha-bungarotoxin plus mecamylamine (7 cats) which binds to neuromuscular-type nicotine cholinergic receptors. alpha-Bungarotoxin caused a slight enhancement of the chemoreceptor response to hypoxia without affecting the chemoreceptor stimulation by nicotine. Mecamylamine (1-5 mg, i.v.), a ganglionic-type nicotinic receptor blocker, had no further effect on the response to hypoxia while it completely abolished the chemoreceptor stimulation by nicotine. Thus the nicotinic receptors in the cat carotid body which elicit excitation of chemosensory fibers appear to be of the ganglionic-type. Blockade of neuromuscular and ganglionic types of nicotinic receptors in the carotid body by alpha-bungarotoxin and mecamylamine does not attenuate the chemosensory responses to either hypoxia or hypercapnia. These nicotinic receptors therefore, do not appear to play an essential role in hypoxic or hypercapnic chemoreception in the cat carotid body.

  5. Dual Modulators of GABA-A and Alpha7 Nicotinic Receptors for Treating Autism

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-08-01

    and Alpha7 Nicotinic Receptors for Treating Autism PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Kelvin W. Gee RECIPIENT: University of California Irvine...Aug 2014 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Dual Modulators of GABA-A and Alpha7 Nicotinic Receptors for Treating Autism 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER...DISTRIBUTION / AVAILABILITY STATEMENT Approved for Public Release; Distribution Unlimited 13. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES 14. ABSTRACT Autism

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-26

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

  9. X-ray structure of the human α4β2 nicotinic receptor

    PubMed Central

    Morales-Perez, Claudio L.; Noviello, Colleen M.; Hibbs, Ryan E.

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are ligand gated ion channels that mediate fast chemical neurotransmission at the neuromuscular junction and play diverse signaling roles in the central nervous system. The nicotinic receptor has been a model system for cell surface receptors, and specifically for ligand-gated ion channels, for well over a century1,2. In addition to the receptors’ prominent roles in the development of the fields of pharmacology and neurobiology, nicotinic receptors are important therapeutic targets for neuromuscular disease, addiction, epilepsy, and for neuromuscular blocking agents used during surgery2–4. The overall architecture of the receptor was described in landmark studies of the nicotinic receptor isolated from the electric organ of Torpedo marmorata5. Structures of a soluble ligand binding domain have provided atomic-scale insights into receptor-ligand interactions6, while high-resolution structures of other members of the pentameric receptor superfamily provide touchstones for an emerging allosteric gating mechanism7. All available high-resolution structures are of homopentameric receptors. However, the vast majority of pentameric receptors (called Cys-loop receptors in eukaryotes) present physiologically are heteromeric. Here we present the X-ray crystallographic structure of the human α4β2 nicotinic receptor, the most abundant nicotinic subtype in the brain. This structure provides insights into the architectural principles governing ligand recognition, heteromer assembly, ion permeation and desensitization in this prototypical receptor class. PMID:27698419

  10. Thyroid receptor β involvement in the effects of acute nicotine on hippocampus-dependent memory.

    PubMed

    Leach, Prescott T; Kenney, Justin W; Connor, David A; Gould, Thomas J

    2015-06-01

    Cigarette smoking is common despite adverse health effects. Nicotine's effects on learning may contribute to addiction by enhancing drug-context associations. Effects of nicotine on learning could be direct or could occur by altering systems that modulate cognition. Because thyroid signaling can alter cognition and nicotine/smoking may change thyroid function, nicotine could affect learning through changes in thyroid signaling. These studies investigate the functional contributions of thyroid receptor (TR) subtypes β and α1 to nicotine-enhanced learning and characterize the effects of acute nicotine and learning on thyroid hormone levels. We conducted a high throughput screen of transcription factor activity to identify novel targets that may contribute to the effects of nicotine on learning. Based on these results, which showed that combined nicotine and learning uniquely acted to increase TR activation, we identified TRs as potential targets of nicotine. Further analyses were conducted to determine the individual and combined effects of nicotine and learning on thyroid hormone levels, but no changes were seen. Next, to determine the role of TRβ and TRα1 in the effects of nicotine on learning, mice lacking the TRβ or TRα1 gene and wildtype littermates were administered acute nicotine prior to fear conditioning. Nicotine enhanced contextual fear conditioning in TRα1 knockout mice and wildtypes from both lines but TRβ knockout mice did not show nicotine-enhanced learning. This finding supports involvement of TRβ signaling in the effect of acute nicotine on hippocampus-dependent memory. Acute nicotine enhances learning and these effects may involve processes regulated by the transcription factor TRβ.

  11. Trafficking of alpha4* nicotinic receptors revealed by superecliptic phluorin: effects of a beta4 amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-associated mutation and chronic exposure to nicotine.

    PubMed

    Richards, Christopher I; Srinivasan, Rahul; Xiao, Cheng; Mackey, Elisha D W; Miwa, Julie M; Lester, Henry A

    2011-09-09

    We employed a pH-sensitive GFP analog, superecliptic phluorin, to observe aspects of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) trafficking to the plasma membrane (PM) in cultured mouse cortical neurons. The experiments exploit differences in the pH among endoplasmic reticulum (ER), trafficking vesicles, and the extracellular solution. The data confirm that few α4β4 nAChRs, but many α4β2 nAChRs, remain in neutral intracellular compartments, mostly the ER. We observed fusion events between nAChR-containing vesicles and PM; these could be quantified in the dendritic processes. We also studied the β4R348C polymorphism, linked to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). This mutation depressed fusion rates of α4β4 receptor-containing vesicles with the PM by ∼2-fold, with only a small decrease in the number of nAChRs per vesicle. The mutation also decreased the number of ER exit sites, showing that the reduced receptor insertion results from a change at an early stage in trafficking. We confirm the previous report that the mutation leads to reduced agonist-induced currents; in the cortical neurons studied, the reduction amounts to 2-3-fold. Therefore, the reduced agonist-induced currents are caused by the reduced number of α4β4-containing vesicles reaching the membrane. Chronic nicotine exposure (0.2 μM) did not alter the PM insertion frequency or trafficking behavior of α4β4-laden vesicles. In contrast, chronic nicotine substantially increased the number of α4β2-containing vesicle fusions at the PM; this stage in α4β2 nAChR up-regulation is presumably downstream from increased ER exit. Superecliptic phluorin provides a tool to monitor trafficking dynamics of nAChRs in disease and addiction.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1991-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-05-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  15. Abolishment of serotonergic neurotransmission to cardiac vagal neurons during and after hypoxia and hypercapnia with prenatal nicotine exposure.

    PubMed

    Kamendi, H W; Cheng, Q; Dergacheva, O; Gorini, C; Jameson, H S; Wang, X; McIntosh, J M; Mendelowitz, D

    2009-03-01

    Cardioinhibitory cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs) do not receive inspiratory-related excitatory inputs under normal conditions. However, excitatory purinergic and serotonergic pathways are recruited during inspiratory activity after episodes of hypoxia and hypercapnia (H/H). Prenatal nicotine (PNN) exposure is known to dramatically change cardiorespiratory responses and decrease the ability to resuscitate from H/H. This study tested whether PNN exposure alters excitatory neurotransmission to CVNs in the nucleus ambiguus during and after H/H. Spontaneous and inspiratory evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents were recorded in CVNs from rats that were exposed to nicotine (6 mg x kg(-1) x d(-1)) throughout the prenatal period. In contrast to unexposed animals, in PNN animals H/H recruited excitatory neurotransmission to CVNs during inspiratory-related activity that was blocked by the alpha3beta4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) blocker alpha-conotoxin AuIB (alpha-CTX AuIB, 100 microM) and 6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (CNQX, 50 microM) and d(-)-2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid (AP5, 50 microM), selective AMPA/kainate and N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor blockers, respectively. Following H/H, there was a significant increase in inspiratory-related excitatory postsynaptic currents that were unaltered by alpha-CTX AuIB or ondansetron, a 5-HT3 receptor blocker, but were subsequently inhibited by pyridoxalphosphate-6-azophenyl-2', 4'-disulphonic acid (100 microM), a purinergic receptor blocker and CNQX and AP5. The results from this study demonstrate that with PNN exposure, an excitatory neurotransmission to CVNs is recruited during H/H that is glutamatergic and dependent on activation of alpha3beta4-containing nAChRs. Furthermore, exposure to PNN abolishes a serotonergic long-lasting inspiratory-related excitation of CVNs that is replaced by recruitment of a glutamatergic pathway to CVNs post H/H.

  16. Contribution of NMDA glutamate and nicotinic acetylcholine receptor mechanisms in the discrimination of ethanol-nicotine mixtures.

    PubMed

    Ford, Matthew M; Davis, Natalie L; McCracken, Aubrey D; Grant, Kathleen A

    2013-10-01

    Ethanol and nicotine are commonly coabused drugs, and the incidence of codependence is greater than would be expected on the basis of the summed probability of dependence on each drug alone. Previous findings from our laboratory and others suggest that interactive mechanisms at the level of discriminative stimulus (S(D)) effects may contribute to this coabuse phenomenon. Specifically, ethanol overshadows the nicotine S(D) whereas nicotine potentiates the stimulus salience of ethanol when the two drugs are conditioned as a drug mixture. The goal of the current study was to begin to delineate the pharmacological bases of these ethanol-nicotine interactions. Three groups of C57BL/6J mice were trained to discriminate 0.8 mg/kg nicotine + 0.5 g/kg ethanol (0.8 N + 0.5 E), 0.8 N + 1.0 E, or 0.8 N + 2.0 E. An NMDA receptor antagonist (MK-801) and three nACh receptor ligands were tested for their ability to generalize from or antagonize, respectively, the drug mixtures. MK-801 fully generalized from the 0.8 N + 1.0 E and 0.8 N + 2.0 E mixtures and partially generalized from 0.8 N + 0.5 E. In contrast, nACh receptor ligands had minimal influence in blocking the perception of 0.8 N + 1.0 E and 0.8 N + 2.0 E mixtures, and only mecamylamine partially blocked 0.8 N+0.5 E. Reduced and enhanced contributions of nACh and NMDA receptors, respectively, in the discrimination of ethanol-nicotine mixtures may contribute to the overshadowing and potentiation phenomena observed previously.

  17. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors at the Single-Channel Level.

    PubMed

    Bouzat, Cecilia; Sine, Steven M

    2017-03-05

    Over the past four decades, the patch clamp technique and nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptors have established an enduring partnership. Like all good partnerships, each partner has proven significant in its own right, while their union has spurred innumerable advances in life science research. A member and prototype of the superfamily of pentameric ligand-gated ion channels, the nACh receptor is a chemo-electric transducer, binding nerve-released ACh and rapidly opening its channel to cation flow to elicit cellular excitation. A subject of a Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, the patch clamp technique provides unprecedented resolution of currents through single ion channels in their native cellular environments. Here, focusing on muscle and α7 nACh receptors, we describe the extraordinary contribution of the patch clamp technique toward understanding how they activate in response to neurotransmitter, how subtle structural and mechanistic differences among nACh receptor subtypes translate into significant physiological differences, and how nACh receptors are being exploited as therapeutic drug targets.

  18. Modulation of neuronal and recombinant GABAA receptors by redox reagents

    PubMed Central

    Amato, Alessandra; Connolly, Christopher N; Moss, Stephen J; Smart, Trevor G

    1999-01-01

    The functional role played by the postulated disulphide bridge in γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptors and its susceptibility to oxidation and reduction were studied using recombinant (murine receptor subunits expressed in human embryonic kidney cells) and rat neuronal GABAA receptors in conjunction with whole-cell and single channel patch-clamp techniques. The reducing agent dithiothreitol (DTT) reversibly potentiated GABA-activated responses (IGABA) of α1β1 or α1β2 receptors while the oxidizing reagent 5,5′-dithio-bis-(2-nitrobenzoic acid) (DTNB) caused inhibition. Redox modulation of IGABA was independent of GABA concentration, membrane potential and the receptor agonist and did not affect the GABA EC50 or Hill coefficient. The endogenous antioxidant reduced glutathione (GSH) also potentiated IGABA in α1β2 receptors, while both the oxidized form of DTT and glutathione (GSSG) caused small inhibitory effects. Recombinant receptors composed of α1β1γ2S or α1β2γ2S were considerably less sensitive to DTT and DTNB. For neuronal GABAA receptors, IGABA was enhanced by flurazepam and relatively unaffected by redox reagents. However, in cultured sympathetic neurones, nicotinic acetylcholine-activated responses were inhibited by DTT whilst in cerebellar granule neurones, NMDA-activated currents were potentiated by DTT and inhibited by DTNB. Single GABA-activated ion channel currents exhibited a conductance of 16 pS for α1β1 constructs. DTT did not affect the conductance or individual open time constants determined from dwell time histograms, but increased the mean open time by affecting the channel open probability without increasing the number of cell surface receptors. A kinetic model of the effects of DTT and DTNB suggested that the receptor existed in equilibrium between oxidized and reduced forms. DTT increased the rate of entry into reduced receptor forms and also into desensitized states. DTNB reversed these kinetic effects. Our results

  19. Age-dependent effects of initial exposure to nicotine on serotonin neurons.

    PubMed

    Bang, S J; Commons, K G

    2011-04-14

    Adolescence is a critical vulnerable period during which exposure to nicotine greatly enhances the possibility to develop drug addiction. Growing evidence suggests that serotonergic (5-HT) neurotransmission may contribute to the initiation and maintenance of addictive behavior. As the dorsal raphe (DR) and median raphe (MnR) nuclei are the primary 5-HT source to the forebrain, the current study tested the hypothesis that there are age-dependent effects of acute nicotine administration on activation of 5-HT neurons within these regions. Both adolescent (Postnatal day 30) and adult (Postnatal day 70) male Sprague-Dawley rats received subcutaneous injection of either saline or nicotine (0.2, 0.4, or 0.8 mg/kg). Subsequently, the number of 5-HT cells that were double-labeled for Fos and tryptophan hydroxylase was counted in seven subregions within the DR and the entire MnR. The results show that acute nicotine injection induces Fos expression in 5-HT neurons in a region-specific manner. In addition, adolescents show broader regional activations at either a lower (0.2 mg/kg) and a higher (0.8 mg/kg) dose of nicotine, displaying a unique U-shape response curve across doses. In contrast, 5-HT cells with activated Fos expression were restricted to fewer regions in adults, and the patterns of expression were more consistent across doses. The results reveal dose-dependent effects of nicotine during adolescence with apparent sensitization at different ends of the dosage spectrum examined compared to adults. These data indicate that initial exposure to nicotine may have unique effects in adolescence on the ascending 5-HT system, with the potential for consequences on the affective-motivational qualities of the drug and the subsequent propensity for repeated use.

  20. Molecular identification of high and low affinity receptors for nicotinic acid.

    PubMed

    Wise, Alan; Foord, Steven M; Fraser, Neil J; Barnes, Ashley A; Elshourbagy, Nabil; Eilert, Michelle; Ignar, Diane M; Murdock, Paul R; Steplewski, Klaudia; Green, Andrew; Brown, Andrew J; Dowell, Simon J; Szekeres, Philip G; Hassall, David G; Marshall, Fiona H; Wilson, Shelagh; Pike, Nicholas B

    2003-03-14

    Nicotinic acid has been used clinically for over 40 years in the treatment of dyslipidemia producing a desirable normalization of a range of cardiovascular risk factors, including a marked elevation of high density lipoprotein and a reduction in mortality. The precise mechanism of action of nicotinic acid is unknown, although it is believed that activation of a G(i)-G protein-coupled receptor may contribute. Utilizing available information on the tissue distribution of nicotinic acid receptors, we identified candidate orphan receptors. The selected orphan receptors were screened for responses to nicotinic acid, in an assay for activation of G(i)-G proteins. Here we describe the identification of the G protein-coupled receptor HM74 as a low affinity receptor for nicotinic acid. We then describe the subsequent identification of HM74A in follow-up bioinformatics searches and demonstrate that it acts as a high affinity receptor for nicotinic acid and other compounds with related pharmacology. The discovery of HM74A as a molecular target for nicotinic acid may facilitate the discovery of superior drug molecules to treat dyslipidemia.

  1. Role of nicotine receptor partial agonists in tobacco cessation

    PubMed Central

    Maity, Nivedita; Chand, Prabhat; Murthy, Pratima

    2014-01-01

    One in three adults in India uses tobacco, a highly addictive substance in one or other form. In addition to prevention of tobacco use, offering evidence-based cessation services to dependent tobacco users constitutes an important approach in addressing this serious public health problem. A combination of behavioral methods and pharmacotherapy has shown the most optimal results in tobacco dependence treatment. Among currently available pharmacological agents, drugs that preferentially act on the α4 β2-nicotinic acetyl choline receptor like varenicline and cytisine appear to have relatively better cessation outcomes. These drugs are in general well tolerated and have minimal drug interactions. The odds of quitting tobacco use are at the very least doubled with the use of partial agonists compared with placebo and the outcomes are also superior when compared to nicotine replacement therapy and bupropion. The poor availability of partial agonists and specifically the cost of varenicline, as well as the lack of safety data for cytisine has limited their use world over, particularly in developing countries. Evidence for the benefit of partial agonists is more robust for smoking rather than smokeless forms of tobacco. Although more studies are needed to demonstrate their effectiveness in different populations of tobacco users, present literature supports the use of partial agonists in addition to behavioral methods for optimal outcome in tobacco dependence. PMID:24574554

  2. Full-gestational exposure to nicotine and ethanol augments nicotine self-administration by altering ventral tegmental dopaminergic function due to NMDA receptors in adolescent rats.

    PubMed

    Roguski, Emily E; Sharp, Burt M; Chen, Hao; Matta, Shannon G

    2014-03-01

    In adult rats, we have shown full-gestational exposure to nicotine and ethanol (Nic + EtOH) augmented nicotine self-administration (SA) (increased nicotine intake) compared to pair-fed (PF) offspring. Therefore, we hypothesized that full-gestational exposure to Nic + EtOH disrupts control of dopaminergic (DA) circuitry by ventral tegmental area (VTA) NMDA receptors, augmenting nicotine SA and DA release in nucleus accumbens (NAcc) of adolescents. Both NAcc DA and VTA glutamate release were hyper-responsive to intra-VTA NMDA in Nic + EtOH offspring versus PF (p = 0.03 and 0.02, respectively). Similarly, DA release was more responsive to i.v. nicotine in Nic + EtOH offspring (p = 0.02). Local DL-2-Amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid sodium salt (AP5) (NMDA receptor antagonist) infusion into the VTA inhibited nicotine-stimulated DA release in Nic + EtOH and PF offspring. Nicotine SA was augmented in adolescent Nic + EtOH versus PF offspring (p = 0.000001). Daily VTA microinjections of AP5 reduced nicotine SA by Nic + EtOH offspring, without affecting PF (p = 0.000032). Indeed, nicotine SA in Nic + EtOH offspring receiving AP5 was not different from PF offspring. Both VTA mRNA transcripts and NMDA receptor subunit proteins were not altered in Nic + EtOH offspring. In summary, adolescent offspring exposed to gestational Nic + EtOH show markedly increased vulnerability to become dependent on nicotine. This reflects the enhanced function of a subpopulation of VTA NMDA receptors that confer greater nicotine-induced DA release in NAcc. We hypothesized that concurrent gestational exposure to nicotine and ethanol would disrupt the control of VTA dopaminergic circuitry by NMDA receptors. Resulting in the augmented nicotine self-administration (SA) in adolescent offspring.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-05-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2006-12-01

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

  7. The role of palmitoylation in functional expression of nicotinic alpha7 receptors.

    PubMed

    Drisdel, Renaldo C; Manzana, Ehrine; Green, William N

    2004-11-17

    Neuronal alpha-bungarotoxin receptors (BgtRs) are nicotinic receptors that require as yet unidentified post-translational modifications to achieve functional expression. In this study, we examined the role of protein palmitoylation in BgtR expression. BgtR alpha7 subunits are highly palmitoylated in neurons from brain and other cells capable of BgtR expression, such as pheochromocytoma 12 (PC12) cells. In PC12 cells, alpha7 subunits are palmitoylated with a stoichiometry of approximately one palmitate per subunit, and inhibition of palmitoylation blocks BgtR expression. In cells incapable of BgtR expression, such as human embryonic kidney cells, alpha7 subunits are not significantly palmitoylated. However, in these same cells, chimeric subunits with the N-terminal half of alpha7 fused to the C-terminal half of serotonin-3A receptor (alpha7/5-HT3A) subunits form functional BgtRs that are palmitoylated to an extent similar to that of BgtRalpha7 subunits in PC12 cells. Palmitoylation of PC12 and alpha7/5-HT3A BgtRs occurred during assembly in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). In conclusion, our data indicate a function for protein palmitoylation in which palmitoylation of assembling alpha7 subunits in the ER has a role in the formation of functional BgtRs.

  8. Oseltamivir produces hypothermic and neuromuscular effects by inhibition of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor functions: comparison to procaine and bupropion.

    PubMed

    Fukushima, Akihiro; Chazono, Kaori; Hashimoto, Yuichi; Iwajima, Yui; Yamamoto, Shohei; Maeda, Yasuhiro; Ohsawa, Masahiro; Ono, Hideki

    2015-09-05

    Oseltamivir, an anti-influenza virus drug, induces marked hypothermia in normal mice. We have proposed that the hypothermic effect arises from inhibition of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor function of sympathetic ganglion neurons which innervate the brown adipose tissue (a heat generator). It has been reported that local anesthetics inhibit nicotinic acetylcholine receptor function by acting on its ionic channels, and that bupropion, a nicotinic antagonist, induces hypothermia. In this study, we compared the effects of oseltamivir, procaine and bupropion on body temperature, cardiovascular function and neuromuscular transmission. Intraperitoneal administration of oseltamivir (100mg/kg), procaine (86.6mg/kg) and bupropion (86.7mg/kg) lowered the core body temperature of normal mice. At lower doses (10-30mg/kg oseltamivir, 8.7-26mg/kg procaine and bupropion), when administered subcutaneously, the three drugs antagonized the hypothermia induced by intraperitoneal injection of nicotine (1mg/kg). In anesthetized rats, intravenous oseltamivir (30-100mg/kg), procaine (10mg/kg) and bupropion (10mg/kg) induced hypotension and bradycardia. Oseltamivir alone (100mg/kg) did not inhibit neuromuscular twitch contraction of rats, but at 3-30mg/kg it augmented the muscle-relaxing effect of d-tubocurarine. Similar effects were observed when lower doses of procaine (10-30mg/kg) and bupropion (3-10mg/kg) were administered, suggesting that systemic administration of oseltamivir inhibits muscular nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. These results support the idea that the hypothermic effect of oseltamivir is due to its effects on sympathetic ganglia which innervate the brown adipose tissue, and suggest that oseltamivir may exert non-selective ion channel blocking effects like those of ester-type local anesthetics.

  9. Pharmacologic Antagonism of Ghrelin Receptors Attenuates Development of Nicotine Induced Locomotor Sensitization in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Wellman, Paul J.; Clifford, P. Shane; Rodriguez, Juan; Hughes, Samuel; Eitan, Shoshana; Brunel, Luc; Fehrentz, Jean-Alain; Martinez, Jean

    2011-01-01

    Aims Ghrelin (GHR) is an orexigenic gut peptide that interacts with ghrelin receptors (GHR-Rs) to modulate brain reinforcement circuits. Systemic GHR infusions augment cocaine stimulated locomotion and conditioned place preference (CPP) in rats, whereas genetic or pharmacological ablation of GHR-Rs has been shown to attenuate the acute locomotor-enhancing effects of nicotine, cocaine, amphetamine and alcohol and to blunt the CPP induced by food, alcohol, amphetamine and cocaine in mice. The stimulant nicotine can induce CPP and like amphetamine and cocaine, repeated administration of nicotine induces locomotor sensitization in rats. A key issue is whether pharmacological antagonism of GHR-Rs would similarly attenuate nicotine-induced locomotor sensitization. Method To examine the role of GHR-Rs in the behavioral sensitizing effects of nicotine, adult male rats were injected with either 0, 3 or 6 mg/kg of the GHR-R receptor antagonist JMV 2959 (i.p.) and 20 minutes later with either vehicle or 0.4 mg/kg nicotine hydrogen tartrate (s.c.) on each of 7 consecutive days. Results Rats treated with nicotine alone showed robust locomotor sensitization, whereas rats pretreated with JMV 2959 showed significantly attenuated nicotine-induced hyperlocomotion. Conclusions These results suggest that GHR-R activity is required for the induction of locomotor sensitization to nicotine and complement an emerging literature implicating central GHR systems in drug reward/reinforcement. PMID:21903141

  10. Differential effects of serotonin (5-HT)2 receptor-targeting ligands on locomotor responses to nicotine-repeated treatment.

    PubMed

    Zaniewska, Magdalena; McCreary, Andrew C; Wydra, Karolina; Filip, Małgorzata

    2010-07-01

    We verified the hypothesis that serotonin (5-HT)(2) receptors control the locomotor effects of nicotine (0.4 mg kg(-1)) in rats by using the 5-HT(2A) receptor antagonist M100907, the preferential 5-HT(2A) receptor agonist DOI, the 5-HT(2C) receptor antagonist SB 242084, and the 5-HT(2C) receptor agonists Ro 60-0175 and WAY 163909. Repeated pairings of a test environment with nicotine for 5 days, on Day 10 significantly augmented the locomotor activity following nicotine administration. Of the investigated 5-HT(2) receptor ligands, M100907 (2 mg kg(-1)) or DOI (1 mg kg(-1)) administered during the first 5 days in combination with nicotine attenuated or enhanced, respectively, the development of nicotine sensitization. Given acutely on Day 10, M100907 (2 mg kg(-1)), Ro 60-0175 (1 mg kg(-1)), and WAY 163909 (1.5 mg kg(-1)) decreased the expression of nicotine sensitization. In another set of experiments, where the nicotine challenge test was performed on Day 15 in animals treated repeatedly (Days: 1-5, 10) with nicotine, none of 5-HT(2) receptor ligands administered during the second withdrawal period (Days: 11-14) to nicotine-treated rats altered the sensitizing effect of nicotine given on Day 15. Our data indicate that 5-HT(2A) receptors (but not 5-HT(2C) receptors) play a permissive role in the sensitizing effects of nicotine, while stimulation of 5-HT(2A) receptors enhances the development of nicotine sensitization and activation of 5-HT(2C) receptors is essential for the expression of nicotine sensitization. Repeated treatment with the 5-HT(2) receptor ligands within the second nicotine withdrawal does not inhibit previously established sensitization.

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gould, Thomas J.; Lewis, Michael C.

    2005-01-01

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

  12. A novel µ-conopeptide, CnIIIC, exerts potent and preferential inhibition of NaV1.2/1.4 channels and blocks neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Favreau, Philippe; Benoit, Evelyne; Hocking, Henry G; Carlier, Ludovic; D' hoedt, Dieter; Leipold, Enrico; Markgraf, René; Schlumberger, Sébastien; Córdova, Marco A; Gaertner, Hubert; Paolini-Bertrand, Marianne; Hartley, Oliver; Tytgat, Jan; Heinemann, Stefan H; Bertrand, Daniel; Boelens, Rolf; Stöcklin, Reto; Molgó, Jordi

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE The µ-conopeptide family is defined by its ability to block voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs), a property that can be used for the development of myorelaxants and analgesics. We characterized the pharmacology of a new µ-conopeptide (µ-CnIIIC) on a range of preparations and molecular targets to assess its potential as a myorelaxant. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH µ-CnIIIC was sequenced, synthesized and characterized by its direct block of elicited twitch tension in mouse skeletal muscle and action potentials in mouse sciatic and pike olfactory nerves. µ-CnIIIC was also studied on HEK-293 cells expressing various rodent VGSCs and also on voltage-gated potassium channels and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) to assess cross-interactions. Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) experiments were carried out for structural data. KEY RESULTS Synthetic µ-CnIIIC decreased twitch tension in mouse hemidiaphragms (IC50= 150 nM), and displayed a higher blocking effect in mouse extensor digitorum longus muscles (IC = 46 nM), compared with µ-SIIIA, µ-SmIIIA and µ-PIIIA. µ-CnIIIC blocked NaV1.4 (IC50= 1.3 nM) and NaV1.2 channels in a long-lasting manner. Cardiac NaV1.5 and DRG-specific NaV1.8 channels were not blocked at 1 µM. µ-CnIIIC also blocked the α3β2 nAChR subtype (IC50= 450 nM) and, to a lesser extent, on the α7 and α4β2 subtypes. Structure determination of µ-CnIIIC revealed some similarities to α-conotoxins acting on nAChRs. CONCLUSION AND IMPLICATIONS µ-CnIIIC potently blocked VGSCs in skeletal muscle and nerve, and hence is applicable to myorelaxation. Its atypical pharmacological profile suggests some common structural features between VGSCs and nAChR channels. PMID:22229737

  13. alpha-conotoxin AuIB selectively blocks alpha3 beta4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and nicotine-evoked norepinephrine release.

    PubMed

    Luo, S; Kulak, J M; Cartier, G E; Jacobsen, R B; Yoshikami, D; Olivera, B M; McIntosh, J M

    1998-11-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) with putative alpha3 beta4-subunits have been implicated in the mediation of signaling in various systems, including ganglionic transmission peripherally and nicotine-evoked neurotransmitter release centrally. However, progress in the characterization of these receptors has been hampered by a lack of alpha3 beta4-selective ligands. In this report, we describe the purification and characterization of an alpha3 beta4 nAChR antagonist, alpha-conotoxin AuIB, from the venom of the "court cone," Conus aulicus. We also describe the total chemical synthesis of this and two related peptides that were also isolated from the venom. alpha-Conotoxin AuIB blocks alpha3 beta4 nAChRs expressed in Xenopus oocytes with an IC50 of 0.75 microM, a kon of 1.4 x 10(6) min-1 M-1, a koff of 0.48 min-1, and a Kd of 0.5 microM. Furthermore, alpha-conotoxin AuIB blocks the alpha3 beta4 receptor with >100-fold higher potency than other receptor subunit combinations, including alpha2 beta2, alpha2 beta4, alpha3 beta2, alpha4 beta2, alpha4 beta4, and alpha1 beta1 gamma delta. Thus, AuIB is a novel, selective probe for alpha3 beta4 nAChRs. AuIB (1-5 microM) blocks 20-35% of the nicotine-stimulated norepinephrine release from rat hippocampal synaptosomes, whereas nicotine-evoked dopamine release from striatal synaptosomes is not affected. Conversely, the alpha3 beta2-specific alpha-conotoxin MII (100 nM) blocks 33% of striatal dopamine release but not hippocampal norepinephrine release. This suggests that in the respective systems, alpha3 beta4-containing nAChRs mediate norepinephrine release, whereas alpha3 beta2-containing receptors mediate dopamine release.

  14. Activation of the GABA(B) Receptor Prevents Nicotine-Induced Locomotor Stimulation in Mice.

    PubMed

    Lobina, Carla; Carai, Mauro A M; Froestl, Wolfgang; Mugnaini, Claudia; Pasquini, Serena; Corelli, Federico; Gessa, Gian Luigi; Colombo, Giancarlo

    2011-01-01

    Recent studies demonstrated that activation of the GABA(B) receptor, either by means of orthosteric agonists or positive allosteric modulators (PAMs), inhibited different nicotine-related behaviors, including intravenous self-administration and conditioned place preference, in rodents. The present study investigated whether the anti-nicotine effects of the GABA(B) receptor agonist, baclofen, and GABA(B) PAMs, CGP7930, and GS39783, extend to nicotine stimulant effects. To this end, CD1 mice were initially treated with baclofen (0, 1.25, and 2.5 mg/kg, i.p.), CGP7930 (0, 25, and 50 mg/kg, i.g.), or GS39783 (0, 25, and 50 mg/kg, i.g.), then treated with nicotine (0 and 0.05 mg/kg, s.c.), and finally exposed to an automated apparatus for recording of locomotor activity. Pretreatment with doses of baclofen, CGP7930, or GS39783 that did not alter locomotor activity when given with nicotine vehicle fully prevented hyperlocomotion induced by 0.05 mg/kg nicotine. These data extend to nicotine stimulant effects the capacity of baclofen and GABA(B) PAMs to block the reinforcing, motivational, and rewarding properties of nicotine. These data strengthen the hypothesis that activation of the GABA(B) receptor may represent a potentially useful, anti-smoking therapeutic strategy.

  15. Anesthetics Target Interfacial Transmembrane Sites in Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Forman, Stuart A.; Chiara, David C.; Miller, Keith W.

    2014-01-01

    General anesthetics are a heterogeneous group of small amphiphilic ligands that interact weakly at multiple allosteric sites on many pentameric ligand gated ion channels (pLGICs), resulting in either inhibition, potentiation of channel activity, or both. Allosteric principles imply that modulator sites must change configuration and ligand affinity during receptor state transitions. Thus, general anesthetics and related compounds are useful both as state-dependent probes of receptor structure and as potentially selective modulators of pLGIC functions. This review focuses on general anesthetic sites in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, which were among the first anesthetic-sensitive pLGIC experimental models studied, with particular focus on sites formed by transmembrane domain elements. Structural models place many of these sites at interfaces between two or more pLGIC transmembrane helices both within subunits and between adjacent subunits, and between transmembrane helices and either lipids (the lipid-protein interface) or water (i.e. the ion channel). A single general anesthetic may bind at multiple allosteric sites in pLGICs, producing a net effect of either inhibition (e.g. blocking the ion channel) or enhanced channel gating (e.g. inter-subunit sites). Other general anesthetic sites identified by photolabeling or crystallography are tentatively linked to functional effects, including intra-subunit helix bundle sites and the lipid-protein interface. PMID:25316107

  16. Expression of nicotinic receptors in normal and tumoral pulmonary neuroendocrine cells (PNEC).

    PubMed

    Sartelet, Hervé; Maouche, Kamel; Totobenazara, Jean-laurent; Petit, Jessica; Burlet, Henriette; Monteau, Michel; Tournier, Jean Marie; Birembaut, Philippe

    2008-01-01

    Neuroendocrine (NE) tumors of the lung represent a wide spectrum of phenotypically distinct entities, with differences in tumor progression and aggressiveness, which include carcinoid tumor (CT) and small-cell lung carcinoma (SCLC). Approximately 20-40% of patients with both typical and atypical CT are non-smokers, while virtually all patients with SCLC are cigarette smokers. Cigarette smoke contains numerous molecules which have been identified as carcinogens. The real impact of nicotine in the development of tumors is not well known. Recent studies show that nicotine upregulates factors of transcription through the nicotinic receptors. The aim of our work was to study the expression of the nicotinic receptors in normal and neoplastic pulmonary NE cells. An immunohistochemical study was carried out with antibodies against NE markers and subunits alpha7 and beta2 of nicotinic receptors in 7 normal lungs, 10 CT (8 typical and 2 atypical) and 10 SCLC fixed in formalin and embedded in paraffin. This study was completed with reverse transcription-polymerase chain reactions (RT-PCR) detection of alpha7-subunit nicotinic receptor mRNA expression. Our data showed that beta2-subunit of nicotinic receptors is never expressed in normal NE cells of lungs and very rarely in NE tumors. In contrast, alpha7-subunit is constantly found in NE cells in normal lungs. In tumors, its expression is significantly higher in SCLC than in CT (p=0.009). Thus, alpha7 subunit nicotinic receptor in a context of chronic nicotinic intoxication seems to be associated with an aggressive phenotype in the spectrum of the NE tumors.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, Yuan Cardell, Lars-Olaf

    2014-02-15

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  19. Cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonist rimonabant disrupts nicotine reward-associated memory in rats.

    PubMed

    Fang, Qin; Li, Fang-Qiong; Li, Yan-Qin; Xue, Yan-Xue; He, Ying-Ying; Liu, Jian-Feng; Lu, Lin; Wang, Ji-Shi

    2011-10-01

    Exposure to cues previously associated with drug intake leads to relapse by activating previously acquired memories. Based on previous findings, in which cannabinoid CB(1) receptors were found to be critically involved in specific aspects of learning and memory, we investigated the role of CB(1) receptors in nicotine reward memory using a rat conditioned place preference (CPP) model. In Experiment 1, rats were trained for CPP with alternating injections of nicotine (0.5mg/kg, s.c.) and saline to acquire the nicotine-conditioned memory. To examine the effects of rimonabant on the reconsolidation of nicotine reward memory, rats were administered rimonabant (0, 0.3, and 3.0mg/kg, i.p.) immediately after reexposure to the drug-paired context. In Experiment 2, rats were trained for CPP similarly to Experiment 1. To examine the effects of rimonabant on the reinstatement of nicotine reward memory, rimonabant (0, 0.3, and 3.0mg/kg, i.p.) was administered before the test of nicotine-induced CPP reinstatement. In Experiment 3, to evaluate whether rimonabant itself produces a reward memory, rats were trained for CPP with alternating injections of different doses of rimonabant (0, 0.3, and 3.0mg/kg) and saline. Rimonabant at a dose of 3.0mg/kg significantly disrupted the reconsolidation of nicotine memory and significantly blocked the reinstatement of nicotine-induced CPP. However, rimonabant itself did not produce CPP. These findings provide clear evidence that CB(1) receptors play a role in nicotine reward memory, suggesting that CB(1) receptor antagonists may be a potential target for managing nicotine addiction.

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

    PubMed Central

    Changeux, Jean-Pierre

    2012-01-01

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

  1. Enhancement of insulin-induced PI3K/Akt/GSK-3beta and ERK signaling by neuronal nicotinic receptor/PKC-alpha/ERK pathway: up-regulation of IRS-1/-2 mRNA and protein in adrenal chromaffin cells.

    PubMed

    Sugano, Takashi; Yanagita, Toshihiko; Yokoo, Hiroki; Satoh, Shinya; Kobayashi, Hideyuki; Wada, Akihiko

    2006-07-01

    In cultured bovine adrenal chromaffin cells treated with nicotine (10 microm for 24 h), phosphorylation of Akt, glycogen synthase kinase-3beta (GSK-3beta) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)1/2 induced by insulin (100 nm for 10 min) was enhanced by approximately 62%, without altering levels of these protein kinases. Nicotine produced time (> 12 h)- and concentration (EC(50) 3.6 and 13 microm)-dependent increases in insulin receptor substrate (IRS)-1 and IRS-2 levels by approximately 125 and 105%, without altering cell surface density of insulin receptors. In these cells, insulin-induced tyrosine phosphorylation of IRS-1/IRS-2 and recruitment of phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) to IRS-1/IRS-2 were augmented by approximately 63%. The increase in IRS-1/IRS-2 levels induced by nicotine was prevented by nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) antagonists, the Ca(2+) chelator 1,2-bis(2-aminophenoxy)-ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetra-acetic acid tetrakis-acetoxymethyl ester, cycloheximide or actinomycin D. Nicotine increased IRS-1 and IRS-2 mRNA levels by approximately 57 and approximately 50%, and this was prevented by conventional protein kinase C (cPKC) inhibitor Gö6976, or ERK kinase inhibitors PD98059 and U0126. Nicotine phosphorylated cPKC-alpha, thereby increasing phosphorylation of ERK1/ERK2, as demonstrated by using Gö6976, PD98059 or U0126. Selective activation of cPKC-alpha by thymeleatoxin mimicked these effects of nicotine. Thus, stimulation of nAChRs up-regulated expression of IRS-1/IRS-2 via Ca(2+)-dependent sequential activation of cPKC-alpha and ERK, and enhanced insulin-induced PI3K/Akt/GSK-3beta and ERK signaling pathways.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

  3. Reduced inhibitory action of a GABAB receptor agonist on [3H]-dopamine release from rat ventral tegmental area in vitro after chronic nicotine administration

    PubMed Central

    Amantea, Diana; Bowery, Norman G

    2004-01-01

    Background The activation of GABAB receptors in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) has been suggested to attenuate the rewarding properties of psychostimulants, including nicotine. However, the neurochemical mechanism that underlie this effect remains unknown. Since GABAB receptors modulate the release of several neurotransmitters in the mammalian brain, we have characterised the effect of the GABAB receptor agonist baclofen on the release of [3H]-dopamine ([3H]-DA) from VTA slices of naïve rats and of rats pre-treated with nicotine. Results In naïve rats, baclofen concentration-dependently inhibited the electrically evoked release of [3H]-DA from the isolated VTA (EC50 = 0.103 μM, 95% CI = 0.043–0.249), without affecting the basal [3H]-monoamine overflow. This effect was mediated by activation of GABAB receptors as it was blocked by the selective receptor antagonist CGP55845A. Chronic administration of nicotine (0.4 mg kg-1, s.c., for 14 days) affected neither the basal nor the electrically evoked release of [3H]-DA from VTA slices. However, the inhibitory effect of baclofen (10 μM) on the stimulated [3H]-monoamine overflow was abolished in rats pre-treated with nicotine as compared to saline-injected controls. Conclusions Our results demonstrate that GABAB receptor activation reduces the release of DA from the rat VTA. In addition, a reduced sensitivity of VTA GABAB receptors appears to develop after chronic exposure to nicotine. The resulting disinhibition of VTA DA neurones might therefore contribute to the sensitised dopaminergic responses observed in the rat mesocorticolimbic system following repeated administration of nicotine. PMID:15494079

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-10-15

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

  5. Heteromeric α7β2 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors in the Brain

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  6. Role of α7 nicotinic receptor in the immune system and intracellular signaling pathways

    PubMed Central

    Zdanowski, Robert; Ujazdowska, Dominika; Lewicka, Aneta; Lewicki, Sławomir

    2015-01-01

    Acetylcholine has been well known as one of the most exemplary neurotransmitters. In humans, this versatile molecule and its synthesizing enzyme, choline acetyltransferase, have been found in various non-neural tissues such as the epithelium, endothelium, mesothelium muscle, blood cells and immune cells. The non-neuronal acetylcholine is accompanied by the expression of acetylcholinesterase and nicotinic/muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Increasing evidence of the non-neuronal acetylcholine system found throughout the last few years has indicated this neurotransmitter as one of the major cellular signaling molecules (associated e.g. with kinases and transcription factors activity). This system is responsible for maintenance and optimization of the cellular function, such as proliferation, differentiation, adhesion, migration, intercellular contact and apoptosis. Additionally, it controls proper activity of immune cells and affects differentiation, antigen presentation or cytokine production (both pro- and anti-inflammatory). The present article reviews recent findings about the non-neuronal cholinergic system in the field of immune system and intracellular signaling pathways. PMID:26648784

  7. Nicotinic receptors in the dorsal and ventral hippocampus differentially modulate contextual fear conditioning.

    PubMed

    Kenney, Justin W; Raybuck, Jonathan D; Gould, Thomas J

    2012-08-01

    Nicotine administration alters various forms of hippocampus-dependent learning and memory. Increasing work has found that the dorsal and ventral hippocampus differentially contribute to multiple behaviors. Thus, the present study examined whether the effects of nicotine in the dorsal and ventral hippocampus have distinct influences on contextual fear learning in male C57BL/6J mice. Direct infusion of nicotine into the dorsal hippocampus resulted in an enhancement of contextual fear learning, whereas nicotine infused into the ventral hippocampus resulted in deficits. Nicotine infusions into the ventral hippocampus did not alter hippocampus-independent cued fear conditioning or time spent in the open arm of the elevated plus maze, a measure of anxiety, suggesting that the effects are due to alterations in contextual learning and not other general processes. Finally, results from using direct infusions of MLA, a low-affinity α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) antagonist, in conjunction with systemic nicotine, provide evidence that α7-nAChRs in the ventral hippocampus mediate the detrimental effect of ventral hippocampal nicotine on contextual fear learning. These results suggest that with systemic nicotine administration, competition exists between the dorsal and ventral hippocampus for behavioral control over contextual learning.

  8. Ketanserin, a 5-HT2 receptor antagonist, decreases nicotine self-administration in rats.

    PubMed

    Levin, Edward D; Slade, Susan; Johnson, Michael; Petro, Ann; Horton, Kofi; Williams, Paul; Rezvani, Amir H; Rose, Jed E

    2008-12-14

    Nicotine intake constitutes a principal mechanism for tobacco addiction. In addition to primary effects on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, nicotine has cascading effects, which may also underlie its neurobehavioral actions. Nicotine induces serotonin (5-HT) release, which has not classically been thought to be involved in tobacco addiction as dopamine has. However, addiction can be characterized more as a disorder of compulsion than a disorder of enjoyment. 5-HT mechanisms play key roles in compulsive disorders. Nicotine-induced 5-HT release may be a key to tobacco addiction. Ketanserin, a 5-HT2a and 5-HT2c receptor antagonist, significantly attenuates nicotine effects on attention and memory. These studies were conducted to determine if ketanserin would reduce nicotine self-administration in rats. Male Sprague-Dawley rats (N=12) were given initial food pellet training and then 10 sessions of nicotine self-administration training (0.03 mg/kg/infusion, i.v.). Then the rats were administered ketanserin (1 or 2 mg/kg, s.c.) or the saline vehicle. Ketanserin (2 mg/kg) significantly decreased nicotine self-administration. This did not seem to be due to sedative or amnestic effects of ketanserin. In a second study, the effects of repeated administration of 2 mg/kg ketanserin (N=11) vs. saline injections (N=10) were examined. In the initial phase, the acute effectiveness of ketanserin in significantly reducing nicotine self-administration was replicated. The effect became attenuated during the following several sessions, but the significant effect became re-established during the final phases of this two-week study. 5-HT mechanisms play critical roles in the maintenance of nicotine self-administration. Better understanding of those roles may help lead to new 5-HT-based treatments for tobacco addiction.

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

    PubMed

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

    2002-05-01

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

  10. Circulating antibodies against nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in chagasic patients

    PubMed Central

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

    1997-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2005-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2006-10-01

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

  13. Attenuation of CNS inflammatory responses by nicotine involves α7 and non-α7 nicotinic receptors1,2

    PubMed Central

    Hao, Junwei; Simard, Alain R.; Turner, Gregory H.; Wu, Jie; Whiteaker, Paul; Lukas, Ronald J.; Shi, Fu-Dong

    2010-01-01

    A considerable number of in vivo studies have demonstrated that the cholinergic system can dampen the peripheral immune response, and it is thought that the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtype is a key mediator of this process. The goal of the present study was to determine if nicotine modulates immunological mechanisms known to be involved in the development of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a mouse model for CNS autoimmune disease, via α7-nAChRs. Here we show that nicotine exposure attenuates EAE severity and that this effect is largely abolished in nAChR α7 subunit knock-out mice. However, nicotine exposure partially retains the ability to reduce lymphocyte infiltration into the CNS, inhibit auto-reactive T cell proliferation and helper T cell cytokine production, down-regulate co-stimulatory protein expression on myeloid cells, and increase the differentiation and recruitment of regulatory T cells, even in the absence of α7-nAChRs. Diverse effects of nicotine on effector and regulatory T cells, as well as antigen presenting cells, may be linked to differential expression patterns of nAChR subunits across these cell types. Taken together, our data show that although α7-nAChRs indeed seem to play an important role in nicotine-conferred reduction of the CNS inflammatory response and protection against EAE, other nAChR subtypes also are involved in the anti-inflammatory properties of the cholinergic system. PMID:20932827

  14. The Smoking Gun in Nicotine-Induced Anorexia

    PubMed Central

    Rubinstein, Marcelo; Low, Malcolm J.

    2013-01-01

    Hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons are the major source of anorectic melanocortin peptides in the brain. A recent study (Mineur et al., 2011) demonstrates that nicotine directly stimulates arcuate POMC neurons through nicotinic acetylcholinergic α3β4 receptors, suggesting a new mechanism to understand the inverse relationship between tobacco smoking and body weight. PMID:21803282

  15. The Alteration of Neonatal Raphe Neurons by Prenatal-Perinatal Nicotine. Meaning for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Cerpa, Verónica J; Aylwin, María de la Luz O; Beltrán-Castillo, Sebastián; Bravo, Eduardo U; Llona, Isabel R; Richerson, George B; Eugenín, Jaime L

    2015-10-01

    Nicotine may link maternal cigarette smoking with respiratory dysfunctions in sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Prenatal-perinatal nicotine exposure blunts ventilatory responses to hypercapnia and reduces central respiratory chemoreception in mouse neonates at Postnatal Days 0 (P0) to P3. This suggests that raphe neurons, which are altered in SIDS and contribute to central respiratory chemoreception, may be affected by nicotine. We therefore investigated whether prenatal-perinatal nicotine exposure affects the activity, electrical properties, and chemosensitivity of raphe obscurus (ROb) neurons in mouse neonates. Osmotic minipumps, implanted subcutaneously in 5- to 7-day-pregnant CF1 mice, delivered nicotine bitartrate (60 mg kg(-1) d(-1)) or saline (control) for up to 28 days. In neonates, ventilation was recorded by head-out plethysmography, c-Fos (neuronal activity marker), or serotonin autoreceptors (5HT1AR) were immunodetected using light microscopy, and patch-clamp recordings were made from raphe neurons in brainstem slices under normocarbia and hypercarbia. Prenatal-perinatal nicotine exposure decreased the hypercarbia-induced ventilatory responses at P1-P5, reduced both the number of c-Fos-positive ROb neurons during eucapnic normoxia at P1-P3 and their hypercapnia-induced recruitment at P3, increased 5HT1AR immunolabeling of ROb neurons at P3-P5, and reduced the spontaneous firing frequency of ROb neurons at P3 without affecting their CO2 sensitivity or their passive and active electrical properties. These findings reveal that prenatal-perinatal nicotine reduces the activity of neonatal ROb neurons, likely as a consequence of increased expression of 5HT1ARs. This hypoactivity may change the functional state of the respiratory neural network leading to breathing vulnerability and chemosensory failure as seen in SIDS.

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

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-12-01

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

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

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-12-01

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

  18. Effects of the Sazetidine-a Family of Compounds on the Body Temperature in Wildtype, Nicotinic Receptor B2(-/-) and a7(-/-) Mice

    EPA Science Inventory

    Nicotine elicits hypothermic responses in rodents. This effect appears to be related to nicotinic receptor desensitization because sazetidine-A, an a4B2 nicotinic receptor desensitizing agent, produces marked hypothermia and potentiates nicotine-induced hypothermia in mice. To de...

  19. Nicotinic Acid Receptor Abnormalities in Human Skin Cancer: Implications for a Role in Epidermal Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Bermudez, Yira; Benavente, Claudia A.; Meyer, Ralph G.; Coyle, W. Russell; Jacobson, Myron K.; Jacobson, Elaine L.

    2011-01-01

    Background Chronic UV skin exposure leads to epidermal differentiation defects in humans that can be largely restored by pharmacological doses of nicotinic acid. Nicotinic acid has been identified as a ligand for the human G-protein-coupled receptors GPR109A and GPR109B that signal through Gi-mediated inhibition of adenylyl cyclase. We have examined the expression, cellular distribution, and functionality of GPR109A/B in human skin and skin derived epidermal cells. Results Nicotinic acid increases epidermal differentiation in photodamaged human skin as judged by the terminal differentiation markers caspase 14 and filaggrin. Both GPR109A and GPR109B genes are transcribed in human skin and in epidermal keratinocytes, but expression in dermal fibroblasts is below limits of detection. Receptor transcripts are greatly over-expressed in squamous cell cancers. Receptor protein in normal skin is prominent from the basal through granular layers of the epidermis, with cellular localization more dispersive in the basal layer but predominantly localized at the plasma membrane in more differentiated epidermal layers. In normal human primary and immortalized keratinocytes, nicotinic acid receptors show plasma membrane localization and functional Gi-mediated signaling. In contrast, in a squamous cell carcinoma derived cell line, receptor protein shows a more diffuse cellular localization and the receptors are nearly non-functional. Conclusions The results of these studies justify future genetic and pharmacological intervention studies to define possible specific role(s) of nicotinic acid receptors in human skin homeostasis. PMID:21655214

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-10-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  2. Adolescent nicotine administration alters serotonin receptors and cell signaling mediated through adenylyl cyclase.

    PubMed

    Xu, Z; Seidler, F J; Cousins, M M; Slikker, W; Slotkin, T A

    2002-10-04

    Nicotine is a neuroteratogen that targets synaptic function during critical developmental stages and recent studies indicate that CNS vulnerability extends into adolescence, the age at which smoking typically commences. We administered nicotine to adolescent rats via continuous minipump infusions from PN30 to PN47.5, using 6 mg/kg/day, a dose rate that replicates the plasma nicotine levels found in smokers, and examined 5HT receptors and related cell signaling during nicotine administration (PN45) and in the post-treatment period (PN50, 60, 75). Adolescent nicotine decreased 5HT(2) receptor binding in brain regions containing 5HT projections (hippocampus and cerebral cortex), with selectivity for females in the cerebral cortex; regions containing 5HT cell bodies showed either an increase (midbrain in males) or no change (brainstem). In contrast, there were no significant changes in 5HT(1A) receptors; however, the ability of the receptors to signal through adenylyl cyclase (AC) showed a switch from stimulatory to inhibitory effects in females during the post-treatment period. There were also transient alterations in AC responses to beta-adrenergic receptor stimulation, as well as pronounced induction of the AC response to the non-receptor-mediated stimulant, forskolin. Our results indicate that adolescent nicotine exposure alters the concentrations and functions of postsynaptic 5HT receptors in a manner commensurate with impaired 5HT synaptic function. The direction of change, emergence of defects after the cessation of nicotine administration, and sex-preference for effects in females, all support a relationship of impaired 5HT function to the higher incidence of depression seen in adolescent smokers.

  3. Nicotinic cholinergic receptors in rat brain. Annual report No. 2

    SciTech Connect

    Kellar, K.J.

    1985-05-13

    We have conducted experiments to determine if 3H acetylcholine (3Hach) nicotinic recognition sites are located presynaptically on catecholamine and/or serotonin axons. Lesions of these axons by intraventricular injections of neurotoxins resulted in marked decreases in 3Hach binding sites in the striatum and hypothalamus, but not in the cortex or thalamus. These results indicate that 3Hach nicotinic binding sites are located on catecholamine and serotonin axons in specific areas of the brain. In other experiments, we determined that repeated administration of nicotine results in enhanced behavioral responses to a subsequent injection of nicotine, and that there appears to be a correlation between the enhanced response to nicotine and increased 3Hach binding sites in cerebral cortex.

  4. Regulation of hippocampal inhibitory circuits by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Griguoli, Marilena; Cherubini, Enrico

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  6. Dysregulation of kappa-opioid receptor systems by chronic nicotine modulate the nicotine withdrawal syndrome in an age-dependent manner

    PubMed Central

    Tejeda, Hugo A.; Natividad, Luis A.; Orfila, James E.; Torres, Oscar V.; O’Dell, Laura E.

    2012-01-01

    Rationale The mechanisms that mediate age differences during nicotine withdrawal are unclear. Objective This study compared kappa opioid receptor (KOR) activation in naïve and nicotine-treated adolescent and adult rats using behavioral and neurochemical approaches to study withdrawal. Methods The behavioral models used to assess withdrawal included conditioned place and elevated plus maze procedures. Deficits in dopamine transmission in the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) were examined using microdialysis procedures. Lastly, the effects of KOR stimulation and blockade on physical signs produced upon removal of nicotine were examined in adults. Results Nicotine-treated adults displayed a robust aversion to an environment paired with a KOR agonist versus naïve adults. Neither of the adolescent groups displayed a place aversion. KOR activation produced an increase in anxiety-like behavior that was highest in nicotine-treated adults versus all other groups. KOR activation produced a decrease in NAcc dopamine that was largest in nicotine-treated adults versus all other groups. Lastly, KOR activation facilitated physical signs of upon removal of nicotine and KOR blockade reduced this effect. Conclusion Chronic nicotine enhanced the affective, anxiogenic, and neurochemical effects produced by KOR activation in adult rats. Our data suggest that chronic nicotine elicits an increase in KOR function, and this may contribute to nicotine withdrawal since KOR activation facilitated and KOR blockade prevented withdrawal signs upon removal of nicotine. Given that chronic nicotine facilitated the neurochemical effects of KOR agonists in adults but not adolescents, it is suggested that KOR regulation of mesolimbic dopamine may contribute to age differences in nicotine withdrawal. PMID:22659976

  7. Opioid and nicotine receptors affect growth regulation of human lung cancer cell lines

    SciTech Connect

    Maneckjee, R.; Minna, J.D. Uniformed Services Univ. of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD )

    1990-05-01

    Using specific radioactively-labeled ligands, the authors find that lung cancer cell lines of diverse histologic types express multiple, high-affinity membrane receptors for {mu}, {delta}, and {kappa} opioid agonists and for nicotine and {alpha}-bungarotoxin. These receptors are biologically active because cAMP levels decreased in lung cancer cells after opioid and nicotine application. Nicotine at concentrations found in the blood of smokers had no effect on in vitro lung cancer cell growth, whereas {mu}, {delta}, and {kappa} opioid agonists at low concentrations inhibited lung cancer growth in vitro. They also found that lung cancer cells expressed various combinations of immunoreactive opioid peptides ({beta}-endorphin, enkephalin, or dynorphin), suggesting the participation of opioids in a negative autocrine loop or tumor-suppressing system. Due to the almost universal exposure of patients with lung cancer to nicotine, they tested whether nicotine affected the response of lung cancer cell growth to opioids and found that nicotine at concentrations of 100-200 nM partially or totally reversed opioid-induced growth inhibition in 9/14 lung cancer cell lines. These in vitro results for lung cancer cells suggest that opioids could function as part of a tumor suppressor system and that nicotine can function to circumvent this system in the pathogenesis of lung cancer.

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

    PubMed Central

    de Jonge, W J; Ulloa, L

    2007-01-01

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

  9. Chronic sazetidine-A maintains anxiolytic effects and slower weight gain following chronic nicotine without maintaining increased density of nicotinic receptors in rodent brain.

    PubMed

    Hussmann, G Patrick; DeDominicis, Kristen E; Turner, Jill R; Yasuda, Robert P; Klehm, Jacquelyn; Forcelli, Patrick A; Xiao, Yingxian; Richardson, Janell R; Sahibzada, Niaz; Wolfe, Barry B; Lindstrom, Jon; Blendy, Julie A; Kellar, Kenneth J

    2014-05-01

    Chronic nicotine administration increases the density of brain α4β2* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), which may contribute to nicotine addiction by exacerbating withdrawal symptoms associated with smoking cessation. Varenicline, a smoking cessation drug, also increases these receptors in rodent brain. The maintenance of this increase by varenicline as well as nicotine replacement may contribute to the high rate of relapse during the first year after smoking cessation. Recently, we found that sazetidine-A (saz-A), a potent partial agonist that desensitizes α4β2* nAChRs, does not increase the density of these receptors in brain at doses that decrease nicotine self-administration, increase attention in rats, and produce anxiolytic effects in mice. Here, we investigated whether chronic saz-A and varenicline maintain the density of nAChRs after their up-regulation by nicotine. In addition, we examined the effects of these drugs on a measure of anxiety in mice and weight gain in rats. After increasing nAChRs in the rodent brain with chronic nicotine, replacing nicotine with chronic varenicline maintained the increased nAChR binding, as well as the α4β2 subunit proteins measured by western blots. In contrast, replacing nicotine treatments with chronic saz-A resulted in the return of the density of nAChRs to the levels seen in saline controls. Nicotine, saz-A and varenicline each demonstrated anxiolytic effects in mice, but only saz-A and nicotine attenuated the gain of weight over a 6-week period in rats. These findings suggest that apart from its modest anxiolytic and weight control effects, saz-A, or drugs like it, may be useful in achieving long-term abstinence from smoking.

  10. Evidence for two types of nicotinic receptors in the cat carotid body chemoreceptor cells.

    PubMed

    Obeso, A; Gómez-Niño, M A; Almaraz, L; Dinger, B; Fidone, S; González, C

    1997-04-18

    Current concepts on the location and functional significance of nicotinic receptors in the carotid body rest on alpha-bungarotoxin binding and autoradiographic studies. Using an in vitro preparation of the cat carotid body whose catecholamine deposits have been labeled by prior incubation with the tritiated natural precursor [3H]tyrosine, we have found that nicotine induces release of [3H]catecholamines in a dose-dependent manner (IC50 = 9.81 microM). We also found that mecamylamine (50 microM) completely abolished the nicotine-induced release, while alpha-bungarotoxin (100 nM; approximately 20 times its binding Kd) only reduced the release by 56%. These findings indicate that chemoreceptor cells, and perhaps other carotid body structures, contain nicotinic receptors that are not sensitive to alpha-bungarotoxin and force a revision of the current concepts on cholinergic mechanisms in the carotid body chemoreception.

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-01-01

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

  12. Effects of testosterone on the electrical properties and nicotinic transmission of the major pelvic and coeliac ganglion neurones.

    PubMed

    Félix, B; Catalin, D; Miolan, J P; Niel, J P

    2001-02-01

    The effects of testosterone on the electrical properties and nicotinic activation of prevertebral ganglion neurones were investigated in vitro on the male rat major pelvic ganglion and rabbit coeliac ganglion. The electrical activity of the neurones was recorded using intracellular recording techniques. Nicotinic activation was triggered for neurones of the major pelvic ganglion by stimulating the hypogastric, pelvic and cavernous nerves and for coeliac neurones by stimulating the splanchnic nerves. Testosterone modified the resting membrane potential of neurones in the major pelvic ganglion by triggering a slow depolarization, and was without significant effect on the resting membrane potential of coeliac ganglion neurones. In neurones of the major pelvic and coeliac ganglia, testosterone had no significant effect on the firing pattern, on the characteristics of the action potential (firing threshold, duration, overshoot) and on the after-hyperpolarization (amplitude and duration). Testosterone affected, in opposite ways, the nicotinic activation of neurones of the two prevertebral ganglia. In the major pelvic ganglion, testosterone triggered an increase in the amplitude of excitatory postsynaptic potentials induced by stimulation of the hypogastric, pelvic and cavernous nerves with a single pulse, revealing a facilitation of nicotinic activation. On coeliac ganglion neurones, testosterone elicited a decrease in the amplitude of excitatory postsynaptic potentials induced by stimulation of the splanchnic nerves, indicating an inhibition of nicotinic activation. Our study shows that testosterone acts differently on neurones of prevertebral ganglia involved in the nervous control of different functions, its facilitatory action being exerted on neurones of the major pelvic ganglion which is particularly involved in the control of the urogenital tract. Our study reinforces the concept, derived from neuroanatomical and pharmacological studies, of the major pelvic

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-07-01

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

  14. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors control acetylcholine and noradrenaline release in the rodent habenulo-interpeduncular complex

    PubMed Central

    Beiranvand, F; Zlabinger, C; Orr-Urtreger, A; Ristl, R; Huck, S; Scholze, P

    2014-01-01

    Background and purpose Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nACh receptors) play a central role in the habenulo-interpeduncular system. We studied nicotine-induced release of NA and ACh in the habenula and interpeduncular nucleus (IPN). Experimental approach The habenula and IPN were loaded with [3H]-choline or [3H]-NA and placed in superfusion chambers. [3H]-ACh release was also stimulated using nicotinic agonists, electrical pulses and elevated [KCl]o in hippocampal and cortical slices from rats, wild-type mice and mice lacking α5, α7, β2, or β4 nACh receptor subunits. Finally, we analysed nACh receptor subtypes in the IPN using immunoprecipitation. Key results Nicotine induced release of [3H]-ACh in the IPN of rats and mice. This release was calcium-dependent but not blocked by tetrodotoxin (TTX); moreover, [3H]-ACh release was abolished in β4-knockout mice but was unaffected in β2- and α5-knockout mice. In contrast, nicotine-induced release of [3H]-NA in the IPN and habenula was blocked by TTX and reduced in both β2-knockout and β4-knockout mice, and dose–response curves were right-shifted in α5-knockout mice. Although electrical stimuli triggered the release of both transmitters, [3H]-ACh release required more pulses delivered at a higher frequency. Conclusions and implications Our results confirm previous findings that β4-containing nACh receptors are critical for [3H]-ACh release in the mouse IPN. Experiments using α5-knockout mice also revealed that unlike in the hippocampus, nicotine-induced [3H]-NA release in the habenulo-interpeduncular system is altered in this knockout model. As α5-containing nACh receptors play a key role in nicotine intake, our results add NA to the list of transmitters involved in this mechanism. PMID:25041479

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  16. The Nicotinic Receptor Alpha7 Impacts the Mouse Lung Response to LPS through Multiple Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Enioutina, Elena Y.; Myers, Elizabeth J.; Tvrdik, Petr; Hoidal, John R.; Rogers, Scott W.; Gahring, Lorise C.

    2015-01-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha7 (α7) is expressed by neuronal and non-neuronal cells throughout the body. We examined the mechanisms of the lung inflammatory response to intranasal (i.n.) lipopolysaccharide (LPS) regulated by α7. This was done in mice using homologous recombination to introduce a point mutation in the α7 receptor that replaces the glutamate residue 260 that lines the pore with alanine (α7E260A), which has been implicated in controlling the exceptional calcium ion conductance of this receptor. The α7E260A mice exhibit normal inflammatory cell recruitment to the blood in response to i.n. LPS administration. This differs from the α7knock-out (α7KO) in which upstream signaling to initiate the recruitment to the blood following i.n. LPS is significantly impaired. While hematopoietic cells are recruited to the bloodstream in the α7E260A mouse, they fail to be recruited efficiently into both the interstitium and alveolar spaces of the lung. Bone marrow reconstitution experiments demonstrate that the responsiveness of both CD45+ and CD45- cells of the α7E260A mouse are impaired. The expression of several pro-inflammatory cytokine and chemokine RNAs including TNFα, IL-1α, Ccl2 and Cxcl10 are decreased in the α7E260A mouse. However, there is a substantial increase in IL-13 expression by CD45- lung interstitial cells in the α7E260A mouse. Our results support the conclusion that α7 functional pleiotropy contributes to modulating the tissue response to an inflammatory insult through impacting upon a variety of mechanisms reflecting the individual cell composition of the lung. PMID:25803612

  17. Use of an α3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit concatamer to characterize ganglionic receptor subtypes with specific subunit composition reveals species-specific pharmacologic properties.

    PubMed

    Stokes, Clare; Papke, Roger L

    2012-09-01

    Drug development for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) is challenged by subtype diversity arising from variations in subunit composition. On-target activity for neuronal heteromeric receptors is typically associated with CNS receptors that contain α4 and other subunits, while off-target activity could be associated with ganglionic-type receptors containing α3β4 binding sites and other subunits, including β4, β2, α5, or α3 as a structural subunit in the pentamer. Additional interest in α3 β4 α5-containing receptors arises from genome-wide association studies linking these genes, and a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in α5 in particular, to lung cancer and heavy smoking. While α3 and β4 readily form receptors in expression system such as the Xenopus oocyte, since α5 is not required for function, simple co-expression approaches may under-represent α5-containing receptors. We used a concatamer of human α3 and β4 subunits to form ligand-binding domains, and show that we can force the insertions of alternative structural subunits into the functional pentamers. These α3β4 variants differ in sensitivity to ACh, nicotine, varenicline, and cytisine. Our data indicated lower efficacy for varenicline and cytisine than expected for β4-containing receptors, based on previous studies of rodent receptors. We confirm that these therapeutically important α4 receptor partial agonists may present different autonomic-based side-effect profiles in humans than will be seen in rodent models, with varenicline being more potent for human than rat receptors and cytisine less potent. Our initial characterizations failed to find functional effects of the α5 SNP. However, our data validate this approach for further investigations.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  19. Nicotinic excitatory postsynaptic potentials in hippocampal CA1 interneurons are predominantly mediated by nicotinic receptors that contain α4 and β2 subunits.

    PubMed

    Bell, Karen A; Shim, Hoon; Chen, Ching-Kang; McQuiston, A Rory

    2011-12-01

    In the hippocampus, activation of nicotinic receptors that include α4 and β2 subunits (α4β2*) facilitates memory formation. α4β2* receptors may also play a role in nicotine withdrawal, and their loss may contribute to cognitive decline in aging and Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, little is known about their cellular function in the hippocampus. Therefore, using optogenetics, whole cell patch clamping and voltage-sensitive dye (VSD) imaging, we measured nicotinic excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) in hippocampal CA1. In a subpopulation of inhibitory interneurons, release of ACh resulted in slow depolarizations (rise time constant 33.2 ± 6.5 ms, decay time constant 138.6 ± 27.2 ms) mediated by the activation of α4β2* nicotinic receptors. These interneurons had somata and dendrites located in the stratum oriens (SO) and stratum lacunosum-moleculare (SLM). Furthermore, α4β2* nicotinic EPSPs were largest in the SLM. Thus, our data suggest that nicotinic EPSPs in hippocampal CA1 interneurons are predominantly mediated by α4β2* nicotinic receptors and their activation may preferentially affect extrahippocampal inputs in SLM of hippocampal CA1.

  20. Dorsal raphe nucleus acetylcholine-mediated neurotransmission modulates post-ictal antinociception: The role of muscarinic and nicotinic cholinergic receptors.

    PubMed

    de Oliveira, Rithiele Cristina; de Oliveira, Ricardo; Biagioni, Audrey Francisco; Falconi-Sobrinho, Luiz Luciano; Coimbra, Norberto Cysne

    2016-01-15

    The dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN) is a key structure of the endogenous pain inhibitory system. Although the DRN is rich in serotoninergic neurons, cholinergic neurons are also found in that nucleus. Both ictal and inter-ictal states are followed by post-ictal analgesia. The present study investigated the role of cholinergic mechanisms in postictal antinociceptive processes using microinjections of atropine and mecamylamine, muscarinic and nicotinic cholinergic receptor antagonists, respectively, in the DRN of rats. Intraperitoneal injection of pentylenetetrazole (PTZ) (at 64mg/kg) caused tonic and tonic-clonic seizures. The convulsive motor reactions were followed by an increase in pain thresholds, a phenomenon known as post-ictal analgesia. Pre-treatment of the DRN with atropine or mecamylamine at 1µg, 3µg and 5µg/0.2µL decreased the post-ictal antinociceptive phenomenon. The present results showed that the post-ictal analgesia was mediated by muscarinic and nicotinic cholinergic receptors in the DRN, a structure crucially involved in the neural network that organises post-ictal hypoalgesia.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1990-01-01

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

  2. ROLE OF NMDA, NICOTINIC, AND GABA RECEPTORS IN THE STEADY STATE VISUAL EVOKED POTENTIAL IN RATS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    This manuscript characterizes the receptor pathways involved in pattern-evoked potential generation in rats

    " NMDA and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors appear to be involved in the generation of the steady-state pattern evoked response in vivo.

    " The pattern evok...

  3. Structural features of phenoxycarbonylimino neonicotinoids acting at the insect nicotinic receptor.

    PubMed

    Ohno, Ikuya; Tomizawa, Motohiro; Miyazu, Nozomi; Kushibiki, Gohito; Noda, Kumiko; Hasebe, Yasunori; Durkin, Kathleen A; Miyake, Taiji; Kagabu, Shinzo

    2010-10-01

    Substituted-phenoxycarbonylimino neonicotinoid ligands with an electron-donating group showed significantly higher affinity to the insect nicotinic receptor relative to that of the analogue with an electron-withdrawing substituent, thereby establishing in silico binding site interaction model featuring that the phenoxy ring of neonicotinoids and the receptor loop D tryptophan indole plane form a face-to-edge aromatic interaction.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    de Fiebre, Nancyellen C; de Fiebre, Christopher M

    2005-01-03

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

  6. Mutational analysis of muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit assembly

    PubMed Central

    1990-01-01

    The structural elements required for normal maturation and assembly of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit were investigated by expression of mutated subunits in transfected fibroblasts. Normally, the wild-type alpha subunit acquires high affinity alpha bungarotoxin binding in a time-dependent manner; however, mutation of the 128 and/or 142 cysteines to either serine or alanine, as well as deletion of the entire 14 amino acids in this region abolished all detectable high affinity binding. Nonglycosylated subunits that had a serine to glycine mutation in the consensus sequence also did not efficiently attain high affinity binding to toxin. In contrast, mutation of the proline at position 136 to glycine or alanine, or a double mutation of the cysteines at position 192 and 193 to serines had no effect on the acquisition of high affinity toxin binding. These data suggest that a disulfide bridge between cysteines 128 and 142 and oligosaccharide addition at asparagine 141 are required for the normal maturation of alpha subunit as assayed by high affinity toxin binding. The unassembled wild-type alpha subunit expressed in fibroblasts is normally degraded with a t1/2 of 2 h; upon assembly with the delta subunit, the degradation rate slows significantly (t1/2 greater than 13 h). All mutated alpha subunits retained the capacity to assemble with a delta subunit coexpressed in fibroblasts; however, mutated alpha subunits that were not glycosylated or did not acquire high affinity toxin binding were rapidly degraded (t1/2 = 20 min to 2 h) regardless of whether or not they assembled with the delta subunit. Assembly and rapid degradation of nonglycosylated acetylcholine receptor (AChR) subunits and subunit complexes were also observed in tunicamycin- treated BC3H-1 cells, a mouse musclelike cell line that normally expresses functional AChR. Hence, rapid degradation may be one form of regulation assuring that only correctly processed and assembled subunits

  7. α7 nicotinic receptor agonists reduce levodopa-induced dyskinesias with severe nigrostriatal damage

    PubMed Central

    Bordia, Tanuja; Perez, Xiomara A.; McIntosh, J. Michael; Decker, Michael W.; Quik, Maryka

    2015-01-01

    Background ABT-126 is a novel, safe and well-tolerated α7 nicotinic receptor agonist in a Phase 2 Alzheimer's disease study. Here we test the antidyskinetic effect of ABT-126 in MPTP-treated squirrel monkeys with moderate and more severe nigrostriatal damage. Methods Monkeys (n=21, Set 1) were lesioned with MPTP 1-2×. When parkinsonian, they were gavaged with levodopa (10 mg/kg)/carbidopa (2.5 mg/kg) twice daily and dyskinesias rated. They were then given nicotine in drinking water (n=5), or treated with vehicle (n=6) or ABT-126 (n=10) twice daily orally 30 min before levodopa. Set 1 was then re-lesioned 1-2 times for a total of 3-4 MPTP injections. The antidyskinetic effect of ABT-126, nicotine and the β2* nicotinic receptor agonist ABT-894 was re-assessed. Another group of monkeys (n=23, Set 2) was lesioned with MPTP only 1-2×. They were treated with levodopa/carbidopa, administered the α7 agonist ABT-107 (n=6), ABT-894 (n=6), nicotine (n=5) or vehicle (n=6) and dyskinesias evaluated. All monkeys were euthanized and the dopamine transporter measured. Results With moderate nigrostriatal damage (MPTP 1-2×), ABT-126 dose-dependently decreased dyskinesias (~60%), with similar results with ABT-894 (~60%) or nicotine (~60%). With more severe damage (MPTP 3-4×), ABT-126 and nicotine reduced dyskinesias, but ABT-894 did not. The dopamine transporter was 41% and 8.9% of control with moderate and severe nigrostriatal damage, respectively. No drug modified parkinsonism. Conclusion The novel α7 nicotinic receptor drug ABT-126 reduced dyskinesias in monkeys with both moderate and severe nigrostriatal damage. ABT-126 may be useful to reduce dyskinesias in both early and later stage Parkinson's disease. PMID:26573698

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  9. Decreasing nicotinic receptor activity and the spatial learning impairment caused by the NMDA glutamate antagonist dizocilpine in rats

    PubMed Central

    Burke, Dennis A.; Heshmati, Pooneh; Kholdebarin, Ehsan; Levin, Edward D.

    2014-01-01

    Nicotinic systems have been shown by a variety of studies to be involved in cognitive function. Nicotinic receptors have an inherent property to become desensitized after activation. The relative role of nicotinic receptor activation vs. net receptor inactivation by desensitization in the cognitive effects of nicotinic drugs remains to be fully understood. In these studies, we tested the effects of the α7 nicotinic receptor antagonist methyllycaconitine (MLA), the α4β2 nicotinic receptor antagonist dihydro-β-erythroidine (DHβE), the nonspecific nicotinic channel blocker mecamylamine and the α4β2 nicotinic receptor desensitizing agent sazetidine-A on learning in a repeated acquisition test. Adult female Sprague-Dawley rats were trained on a repeated acquisition learning procedure in an 8-arm radial maze. MLA (1–4 mg/kg), DHβE (1–4 mg/kg), mecamylamine (0.125–0.5 mg/kg) or sazetidine-A (1 and 3 mg/kg) were administered in four different studies either alone or together with the NMDA glutamate antagonist dizocilpine (0.05 and 0.10 mg/kg). MLA significantly counteracted the learning impairment caused by dizocilpine. The overall choice accuracy impairment caused by dizocilpine was significantly attenuated by co-administration of DHβE. Low doses of the non-specific nicotinic antagonist mecamylamine also reduced dizocilpine-induced repeated acquisition impairment. Sazetidine-A reversed the accuracy impairment caused by dizocilpine. These studies provide evidence that a net decrease in nicotinic receptor activity can improve learning by attenuating learning impairment induced by NMDA glutamate blockade. This adds to evidence in cognitive tests that nicotinic antagonists can improve cognitive function. Further research characterizing the efficacy and mechanisms underlying nicotinic antagonist and desensitization induced cognitive improvement is warranted. PMID:25064338

  10. Antimuscle atrophy effect of nicotine targets muscle satellite cells partly through an α7 nicotinic receptor in a murine hindlimb ischemia model.

    PubMed

    Kakinuma, Yoshihiko; Noguchi, Tatsuya; Okazaki, Kayo; Oikawa, Shino; Iketani, Mitsue; Kurabayashi, Atsushi; Kurabayashi, Mutsumi; Furihata, Mutsuo; Sato, Takayuki

    2014-07-01

    We have recently identified that donepezil, an anti-Alzheimer drug, accelerates angiogenesis in a murine hindlimb ischemia (HLI) model. However, the precise mechanisms are yet to be fully elucidated, particularly whether the effects are derived from endothelial cells alone or from other nonvascular cells. Further investigation of the HLI model revealed that nicotine accelerated angiogenesis by activation of vascular endothelial cell growth factor (VEGF) synthesis through nicotinic receptors in myogenic cells, that is, satellite cells, in vivo and upregulated the expression of angiogenic factors, for example, VEGF and fibroblast growth factor 2, in vitro. As a result, nicotine prevented skeletal muscle from ischemia-induced muscle atrophy and upregulated myosin heavy chain expression in vitro. The in vivo anti-atrophy effect of nicotine on muscle was also observed in galantamine, another anti-Alzheimer drug, playing as an allosteric potentiating ligand. Such effects of nicotine were attenuated in α7 nicotinic receptor knockout mice. In contrast, PNU282987, an α7 nicotinic receptor agonist, comparably salvaged skeletal muscle, which was affected by HLI. These results suggest that cholinergic signals also target myogenic cells and have inhibiting roles in muscle loss by ischemia-induced muscle atrophy.

  11. Functional distribution of nicotinic receptors in CA3 region of the hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Grybko, Michael; Sharma, Geeta; Vijayaraghavan, Sukumar

    2010-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) modulation of a number of parameters of synaptic signaling in the brain has been demonstrated. It is likely that effects of nicotine are due to its ability to modulate network excitability as a whole. A pre-requisite to understanding the effects of nicotine on network properties is the elucidation of functional receptors. We have examined the distribution of functional nAChRs in the dentate gyrus granule cells and the CA3 region of the mammalian hippocampus using calcium imaging from acute slices. Our results demonstrate the presence of functional nAChRs containing the alpha7 subunit (alpha7-nAChRs) on mossy fiber boutons, CA3 pyramidal cells, and on astrocytes. In addition, both CA3 interneurons and granule cells show nicotinic signals. Our study suggests that functional nicotinic receptors are widespread in their distribution and that calcium imaging might be an effective technique to examine locations of these receptors in the mammalian brain.

  12. Understanding the Bases of Function and Modulation of α7 Nicotinic Receptors: Implications for Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Corradi, Jeremías; Bouzat, Cecilia

    2016-09-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) belongs to a superfamily of pentameric ligand-gated ion channels involved in many physiologic and pathologic processes. Among nAChRs, receptors comprising the α7 subunit are unique because of their high Ca(2+) permeability and fast desensitization. nAChR agonists elicit a transient ion flux response that is further sustained by the release of calcium from intracellular sources. Owing to the dual ionotropic/metabotropic nature of α7 receptors, signaling pathways are activated. The α7 subunit is highly expressed in the nervous system, mostly in regions implicated in cognition and memory and has therefore attracted attention as a novel drug target. Additionally, its dysfunction is associated with several neuropsychiatric and neurologic disorders, such as schizophrenia and Alzheimer's disease. α7 is also expressed in non-neuronal cells, particularly immune cells, where it plays a role in immunity, inflammation, and neuroprotection. Thus, α7 potentiation has emerged as a therapeutic strategy for several neurologic and inflammatory disorders. With unique activation properties, the receptor is a sensitive drug target carrying different potential binding sites for chemical modulators, particularly agonists and positive allosteric modulators. Although macroscopic and single-channel recordings have provided significant information about the underlying molecular mechanisms and binding sites of modulatory compounds, we know just the tip of the iceberg. Further concerted efforts are necessary to effectively exploit α7 as a drug target for each pathologic situation. In this article, we focus mainly on the molecular basis of activation and drug modulation of α7, key pillars for rational drug design.

  13. Basolateral amygdala CB1 cannabinoid receptors mediate nicotine-induced place preference.

    PubMed

    Hashemizadeh, Shiva; Sardari, Maryam; Rezayof, Ameneh

    2014-06-03

    In the present study, the effects of bilateral microinjections of cannabinoid CB1 receptor agonist and antagonist into the basolateral amygdala (intra-BLA) on nicotine-induced place preference were examined in rats. A conditioned place preference (CPP) apparatus was used for the assessment of rewarding effects of the drugs in adult male Wistar rats. Subcutaneous (s.c.) administration of nicotine (0.2mg/kg) induced a significant CPP, without any effect on the locomotor activity during the testing phase. Intra-BLA microinjection of a non-selective cannabinoid CB1/CB2 receptor agonist, WIN 55,212-2 (0.1-0.5 μg/rat) with an ineffective dose of nicotine (0.1mg/kg, s.c.) induced a significant place preference. On the other hand, intra-BLA administration of AM251 (20-60 ng/rat), a selective cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonist inhibited the acquisition of nicotine-induced place preference. It should be considered that the microinjection of the same doses of WIN 55,212-2 or AM251 into the BLA, by itself had no effect on the CPP score. The administration of a higher dose of AM251 (60 ng/rat) during the acquisition decreased the locomotor activity of animals on the testing phase. Interestingly, the microinjection of AM251 (20 and 40 ng/rat), but not WIN55,212-2 (0.1-0.5 μg/rat), into the BLA inhibited the expression of nicotine-induced place preference without any effect on the locomotor activity. Taken together, these findings support the possible role of endogenous cannabinoid system of the BLA in the acquisition and the expression of nicotine-induced place preference. Furthermore, it seems that there is a functional interaction between the BLA cannabinoid receptors and nicotine in producing the rewarding effects.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  15. Recruitment of GABAA Receptors in Chemoreceptor Pulmonary Neuroepithelial Bodies by Prenatal Nicotine Exposure in Monkey Lung

    PubMed Central

    Fu, XW.; Spindel, E.R.

    2010-01-01

    Pulmonary neuroepithelial bodies (NEB) act as airway oxygen sensors and produce serotonin, a variety of neuropeptides and are involved in autonomic nervous system control of breathing, especially during the neonatal period. We now report that NEB cells also express a GABAegic signaling loop that is increased by prenatal nicotine exposure. In this study, cultured monkey NEB cells show hypoxia-evoked spikes and hypoxia-sensitive K+ current. As shown by both immunofluorescence and RT-PCR, monkey NEB cells synthesize and contain serotonin. The monkey NEB cells express the β2 and β3 GABAA receptor subunits, GAD and also express α7, α4 and β4 nicotinic receptor (nAChR) subunits. The α7 nAChR is co-expressed with GAD in NEB. The numbers of NEB and β3 GABAA receptor subunits expressed in NEB cells in lungs from control newborn monkeys were compared to lungs from animals that received nicotine during gestation. Prenatal nicotine exposure increased the numbers of NEB by 46% in lung and the numbers of NEB cells expressing GAD and GABAA β3 receptors increased by 67% and 66%, respectively. This study suggests that prenatal nicotine exposure can modulate NEB function by increasing the numbers of NEB cells and by increasing both GAD expression and β3 GABAA receptor subunit expression. The interaction of the intrinsic GABAergic system in the lung with nicotinic receptors in PNEC/NEB may provide a mechanism to explain the link between smoking during pregnancy and SIDS. PMID:19536509

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  17. The role of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Becchetti, Andrea; Aracri, Patrizia; Meneghini, Simone; Brusco, Simone; Amadeo, Alida

    2015-01-01

    Autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy (ADNFLE) is a focal epilepsy with attacks typically arising in the frontal lobe during non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep. It is characterized by clusters of complex and stereotyped hypermotor seizures, frequently accompanied by sudden arousals. Cognitive and psychiatric symptoms may be also observed. Approximately 12% of the ADNFLE families carry mutations on genes coding for subunits of the heteromeric neuronal nicotinic receptors (nAChRs). This is consistent with the widespread expression of these receptors, particularly the α4β2(*) subtype, in the neocortex and thalamus. However, understanding how mutant nAChRs lead to partial frontal epilepsy is far from being straightforward because of the complexity of the cholinergic regulation in both developing and mature brains. The relation with the sleep-waking cycle must be also explained. We discuss some possible pathogenetic mechanisms in the light of recent advances about the nAChR role in prefrontal regions as well as the studies carried out in murine models of ADNFLE. Functional evidence points to alterations in prefrontal GABA release, and the synaptic unbalance probably arises during the cortical circuit maturation. Although most of the available functional evidence concerns mutations on nAChR subunit genes, other genes have been recently implicated in the disease, such as KCNT1 (coding for a Na(+)-dependent K(+) channel), DEPD5 (Disheveled, Egl-10 and Pleckstrin Domain-containing protein 5), and CRH (Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone). Overall, the uncertainties about both the etiology and the pathogenesis of ADNFLE point to the current gaps in our knowledge the regulation of neuronal networks in the cerebral cortex.

  18. The role of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Becchetti, Andrea; Aracri, Patrizia; Meneghini, Simone; Brusco, Simone; Amadeo, Alida

    2015-01-01

    Autosomal dominant nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy (ADNFLE) is a focal epilepsy with attacks typically arising in the frontal lobe during non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep. It is characterized by clusters of complex and stereotyped hypermotor seizures, frequently accompanied by sudden arousals. Cognitive and psychiatric symptoms may be also observed. Approximately 12% of the ADNFLE families carry mutations on genes coding for subunits of the heteromeric neuronal nicotinic receptors (nAChRs). This is consistent with the widespread expression of these receptors, particularly the α4β2* subtype, in the neocortex and thalamus. However, understanding how mutant nAChRs lead to partial frontal epilepsy is far from being straightforward because of the complexity of the cholinergic regulation in both developing and mature brains. The relation with the sleep-waking cycle must be also explained. We discuss some possible pathogenetic mechanisms in the light of recent advances about the nAChR role in prefrontal regions as well as the studies carried out in murine models of ADNFLE. Functional evidence points to alterations in prefrontal GABA release, and the synaptic unbalance probably arises during the cortical circuit maturation. Although most of the available functional evidence concerns mutations on nAChR subunit genes, other genes have been recently implicated in the disease, such as KCNT1 (coding for a Na+-dependent K+ channel), DEPD5 (Disheveled, Egl-10 and Pleckstrin Domain-containing protein 5), and CRH (Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone). Overall, the uncertainties about both the etiology and the pathogenesis of ADNFLE point to the current gaps in our knowledge the regulation of neuronal networks in the cerebral cortex. PMID:25717303