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Sample records for altered glutamatergic synaptic

  1. Melamine Alters Glutamatergic Synaptic Transmission of CA3-CA1 Synapses Presynaptically Through Autophagy Activation in the Rat Hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hui; Wang, Hui; Xiao, Xi; Zhang, Tao

    2016-01-01

    Melamine is an industrial chemical that can cause central nervous system disorders including excitotoxicity and cognitive impairment. Its illegal use in powdered baby formula was the focus of a milk scandal in China in 2008. One of our previous studies showed that melamine impaired glutamatergic transmission in rat hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells. However, the underlying mechanism of action of melamine is unclear, and it is unknown if the CA3-CA1 pathway is directly involved. In the present study, a whole-cell patch-clamp technique was employed to investigate the effect of melamine on the hippocampal CA3-CA1 pathway in vitro. Both the evoked excitatory postsynaptic current (eEPSC) and the paired-pulse ratio (PPR) were recorded. Furthermore, we examined whether autophagy was involved in glutamatergic transmission alterations induced by melamine. Our data showed that melamine significantly increased the amplitude of eEPSCs in a dose-dependent manner. Inhibition of the N-methyl-D-aspartic acid receptor did not prevent the increase in eEPSC amplitude. In addition, the PPR was remarkably decreased by a melamine concentration of 5 × 10(-5) g/mL. It was found that autophagy could be activated by melamine and an autophagy inhibitor, 3-MA, prevented the melamine-induced increase in eEPSC amplitude. Overall, our results show that melamine presynaptically alters glutamatergic synaptic transmission of hippocampal CA3-CA1 synapses in vitro and this is likely associated with autophagy alteration. PMID:26530910

  2. Glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the mesocorticolimbic system in addiction

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    Huib Mansvelder

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Addictive drugs remodel the brain’s reward circuitry, the mesocorticolimbic dopamine system, by inducing widespread adaptations of glutamatergic synapses. This drug-induced synaptic plasticity is thought to contribute to both the development and the persistence of addiction. This review highlights the synaptic modifications that are induced by in vivo exposure to addictive drugs and describes how these drug-induced synaptic changes may contribute to the different components of addictive behaviour, such as compulsive drug use despite negative consequences and relapse. Initially, exposure to an addictive drug induces synaptic changes in the ventral tegmental area (VTA. This drug-induced synaptic potentiation in the VTA subsequently triggers synaptic changes in downstream areas of the mesocorticolimbic system, such as the nucleus accumbens (NAc and the prefrontal cortex (PFC, with further drug exposure. These glutamatergic synaptic alterations are then thought to mediate many of the behavioural symptoms that characterize addiction. The later stages of glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the NAc and in particular in the PFC play a role in maintaining addiction and drive relapse to drug-taking induced by drug-associated cues. Remodelling of PFC glutamatergic circuits can persist into adulthood, causing a lasting vulnerability to relapse. We will discuss how these neurobiological changes produced by drugs of abuse may provide novel targets for potential treatment strategies for addiction.

  3. Synapsin IIa controls the reserve pool of glutamatergic synaptic vesicles

    OpenAIRE

    Gitler, Daniel; Cheng, Qing; Greengard, Paul; Augustine, George J.

    2008-01-01

    Synapsins regulate synaptic transmission by controlling the reserve pool of synaptic vesicles. Each of the three mammalian synapsin genes is subject to alternative splicing, yielding several isoforms whose roles are unknown. To investigate the function of these isoforms, we examined the synaptic effects of introducing each isoform into glutamatergic cultured hippocampal neurons from synapsin triple knock-out mice. Remarkably, we found that synapsin IIa was the only isoform that could rescue t...

  4. Long-lasting alterations in membrane properties, K+ currents and glutamatergic synaptic currents of nucleus accumbens medium spiny neurons in a rat model of alcohol dependence

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    IgorSpigelman

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Chronic alcohol exposure causes marked changes in reinforcement mechanisms and motivational state that are thought to contribute to the development of cravings and relapse during protracted withdrawal. The nucleus accumbens (NAcc is a key structure of the mesolimbic dopaminergic reward system. Although the NAcc plays an important role in mediating alcohol-seeking behaviors, little is known about the molecular mechanisms underlying alcohol-induced neuroadaptive changes in NAcc function. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of chronic intermittent ethanol (CIE treatment, a rat model of alcohol withdrawal and dependence, on intrinsic electrical membrane properties and glutamatergic synaptic transmission of medium spiny neurons (MSNs in the NAcc core during protracted withdrawal. We show that CIE treatment followed by prolonged withdrawal increased the inward rectification of MSNs observed at hyperpolarized potentials. In addition, MSNs from CIE-treated animals displayed a lower input resistance, faster action potentials (APs and larger fast afterhyperpolarizations (fAHPs than MSNs from vehicle-treated animals, all suggestive of increases in K+-channel conductances. Significant increases in the Cs+-sensitive inwardly-rectifying K+-current accounted for the increased input resistance, while increases in the A-type K+-current accounted for the faster APs and increased fAHPs in MSNs from CIE rats. We also show that the amplitude and the conductance of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor (AMPAR-mediated mEPSCs were enhanced in CIE-treated animals due to an increase in a small fraction of functional postsynaptic GluA2-lacking AMPARs. These long-lasting modifications of excitability and excitatory synaptic receptor function of MSNs in the NAcc core could play a critical role in the neuroadaptive changes underlying alcohol withdrawal and dependence.

  5. Synaptic vesicle cycling is not impaired in a glutamatergic and a cholinergic synapse that exhibit deficits in acidification and filling

    OpenAIRE

    Bento João Abreu; Luciana Ferreira Leite; Débora Lopes Oliveira; Ernani Amaral

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of the present work was to investigate synaptic vesicle trafficking when vesicles exhibit alterations in filling and acidification in two different synapses: a cholinergic frog neuromuscular junction and a glutamatergic ribbon-type nerve terminal in the retina. These synapses display remarkable structural and functional differences, and the mechanisms regulating synaptic vesicle cycling might also differ between them. The lipophilic styryl dye FM1-43 was used to monitor vesicle tr...

  6. Chronic hyperammonemia, glutamatergic neurotransmission and neurological alterations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llansola, Marta; Montoliu, Carmina; Cauli, Omar; Hernández-Rabaza, Vicente; Agustí, Ana; Cabrera-Pastor, Andrea; Giménez-Garzó, Carla; González-Usano, Alba; Felipo, Vicente

    2013-06-01

    This mini-review focus on our studies on alterations in glutamatergic neurotransmission and their role in neurological alterations in rat models of chronic hyperammonemia and hepatic encephalopathy (HE). Hyperammonemia impairs the glutamate-nitric oxide (NO)-cGMP pathway in cerebellum, which is responsible for reduced learning ability. We studied the underlying mechanisms and designed treatments to restore the pathway and learning. This was achieved by treatment with: phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitors, cGMP, anti-inflammatories (ibuprofen), p38 inhibitors or GABAA receptor antagonists (bicuculline). Hyperammonemia alters signal transduction associated to metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs). Hypokinesia in hyperammonemia and HE is due to increased extracellular glutamate and mGluR1 activation in substantia nigra; blocking this receptor restores motor activity. The motor responses to mGluRs activation in nucleus accumbens (NAcc) are altered in hyperammonemia and HE, with reduced dopamine and increased glutamate release. This leads to activation of different neuronal circuits and enhanced motor responses. These studies show that altered responses to activation of NMDA receptors and mGluRs play essential roles in cognitive and motor alterations in hyperammonemia and HE and provide new treatments restoring cognitive and motor function. PMID:23010935

  7. Copy number variants involving components of the glutamatergic synaptic pathway in ASD patients

    OpenAIRE

    Oliveira, B.A.; Conceição, I.C.; Correia, C.A.; Café, C.; De Almeida, J.; Mouga, S; Duque, F; G. Oliveira; Vicente, A. M.

    2012-01-01

    Copy Number Variants (CNVs) play an important role in susceptibility to Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), in particular when deleting or duplicating genes involved in synaptic structure and function such as glutamatergic synapse genes. Identifying CNVs of etiologic relevance for ASD that include glutamatergic genes may contribute to the understanding of glutamate-related pathogenic mechanisms in this disorder.

  8. M-type potassium channels modulate Schaffer collateral-CA1 glutamatergic synaptic transmission.

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    Sun, Jianli; Kapur, Jaideep

    2012-08-15

    Previous studies have suggested that muscarinic receptor activation modulates glutamatergic transmission. M-type potassium channels mediate the effects of muscarinic activation in the hippocampus, and it has been proposed that they modulate glutamatergic synaptic transmission. We tested whether M1 muscarinic receptor activation enhances glutamatergic synaptic transmission via the inhibition of the M-type potassium channels that are present in Schaffer collateral axons and terminals. Miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) were recorded from CA1 pyramidal neurons. The M1 receptor agonist, NcN-A-343, increased the frequency of mEPSCs, but did not alter their amplitude. The M-channel blocker XE991 and its analogue linopirdine also increased the frequency of mEPSCs. Flupirtine, which opens M-channels, had the opposite effect. XE991 did not enhance mEPSCs frequency in a calcium-free external medium. Blocking P/Q- and N-type calcium channels abolished the effect of XE991 on mEPSCs. These data suggested that the inhibition of M-channels increases presynaptic calcium-dependent glutamate release in CA1 pyramidal neurons. The effects of these agents on the membrane potentials of presynaptic CA3 pyramidal neurons were studied using current clamp recordings; activation of M1 receptors and blocking M-channels depolarized neurons and increased burst firing. The input resistance of CA3 neurons was increased by the application of McN-A-343 and XE991; these effects were consistent with the closure of M-channels. Muscarinic activation inhibits M-channels in CA3 pyramidal neurons and its efferents – Schaffer collateral, which causes the depolarization, activates voltage-gated calcium channels, and ultimately elevates the intracellular calcium concentration to increase the release of glutamate on CA1 pyramidal neurons. PMID:22674722

  9. The origin of glutamatergic synaptic inputs controls synaptic plasticity and its modulation by alcohol in mice nucleus accumbens

    OpenAIRE

    Ji, Xincai; Saha, Sucharita; Martin, Gilles E.

    2015-01-01

    It is widely accepted that long-lasting changes of synaptic strength in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), a brain region involved in drug reward, mediate acute and chronic effects of alcohol. However, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the effects of alcohol on synaptic plasticity is limited by the fact that the NAc receives glutamatergic inputs from distinct brain regions (e.g., the prefrontal cortex (PFCx), the amygdala and the hippocampus), each region providing different informatio...

  10. The origin of glutamatergic synaptic inputs controls synaptic plasticity and its modulation by alcohol in mice nucleus accumbens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Xincai; Saha, Sucharita; Martin, Gilles E

    2015-01-01

    It is widely accepted that long-lasting changes of synaptic strength in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), a brain region involved in drug reward, mediate acute and chronic effects of alcohol. However, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the effects of alcohol on synaptic plasticity is limited by the fact that the NAc receives glutamatergic inputs from distinct brain regions (e.g., the prefrontal cortex (PFCx), the amygdala and the hippocampus), each region providing different information (e.g., spatial, emotional and cognitive). Combining whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and the optogenetic technique, we examined synaptic plasticity, and its regulation by alcohol, at cortical, hippocampal and amygdala inputs in fresh slices of mouse tissue. We showed that the origin of synaptic inputs determines the basic properties of glutamatergic synaptic transmission, the expression of spike-timing dependent long-term depression (tLTD) and long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term potentiation (tLTP) and their regulation by alcohol. While we observed both tLTP and tLTD at amygadala and hippocampal synapses, we showed that cortical inputs only undergo tLTD. Functionally, we provide evidence that acute Ethyl Alcohol (EtOH) has little effects on higher order information coming from the PFCx, while severely impacting the ability of emotional and contextual information to induce long-lasting changes of synaptic strength. PMID:26257641

  11. Energy substrates to support glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, Arne; Bak, Lasse K; Sickmann, Helle M;

    2007-01-01

    under normal conditions is glucose but at the cellular level, i.e., neurons and astrocytes, lactate may play an important role as well. In addition to this the possibility exists that glycogen, which functions as a glucose storage molecule and which is only present in astrocytes, could play a role not...... only during aglycemia but also during normoglycemia. These issues are discussed and it is concluded that both glucose and lactate are of importance for the maintenance of normal glutamatergic and GABAergic activity. However, with regard to maintenance of an adequate capacity for glutamate transport, it...... appears that glucose metabolism via the glycolytic pathway plays a fundamental role. Additionally, evidence is presented to support the notion that glycogen turnover may play an important role in this context. Moreover, it should be noted that the amino acid neurotransmitters can be used as metabolic...

  12. Glucose is necessary to maintain neurotransmitter homeostasis during synaptic activity in cultured glutamatergic neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bak, Lasse K; Schousboe, Arne; Sonnewald, Ursula;

    2006-01-01

    Glucose is the primary energy substrate for the adult mammalian brain. However, lactate produced within the brain might be able to serve this purpose in neurons. In the present study, the relative significance of glucose and lactate as substrates to maintain neurotransmitter homeostasis was...... was unaffected by the choice of substrate. In conclusion, the present study shows that glucose is a necessary substrate to maintain neurotransmitter homeostasis during synaptic activity and that synaptic activity does not induce an upregulation of lactate metabolism in glutamatergic neurons....

  13. Melatonin receptor activation increases glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the rat medial lateral habenula.

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    Evely, Katherine M; Hudson, Randall L; Dubocovich, Margarita L; Haj-Dahmane, Samir

    2016-05-01

    Melatonin (MLT) is secreted from the pineal gland and mediates its physiological effects through activation of two G protein-coupled receptors, MT1 and MT2 . These receptors are expressed in several brain areas, including the habenular complex, a pair of nuclei that relay information from forebrain to midbrain and modulate a plethora of behaviors, including sleep, mood, and pain. However, so far, the precise mechanisms by which MLT control the function of habenula neurons remain unknown. Using whole cell recordings from male rat brain slices, we examined the effects of MLT on the excitability of medial lateral habenula (MLHb) neurons. We found that MLT had no significant effects on the intrinsic excitability of MLHb neurons, but profoundly increased the amplitude of glutamate-mediated evoked excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSC). The increase in strength of glutamate synapses onto MLHb neurons was mediated by an increase in glutamate release. The MLT-induced increase in glutamatergic synaptic transmission was blocked by the competitive MT1 /MT2 receptor antagonist luzindole (LUZ). These results unravel a potential cellular mechanism by which MLT receptor activation enhances the excitability of MLHb neurons. The MLT-mediated control of glutamatergic inputs to the MLHb may play a key role in the modulation of various behaviors controlled by the habenular complex. PMID:26799638

  14. Role of the origin of glutamatergic synaptic inputs in controlling synaptic plasticity and its modulation by alcohol in mice nucleus accumbens

    OpenAIRE

    Gilles Erwann Martin; Xincai eJi; Sucharita eSaha

    2015-01-01

    It is widely accepted that long-lasting changes of synaptic strength in the nucleus accumbens, a brain region involved in drug reward, mediate acute and chronic effects of alcohol. However, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the effects of alcohol on synaptic plasticity is limited by the fact that the nucleus accumbens receives glutamatergic inputs from distinct brain regions (e.g. the prefrontal cortex, the amygdala and the hippocampus), each region providing different informatio...

  15. Stress-induced altered cholinergic-glutamatergic interactions in the mouse hippocampus.

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    Pavlovsky, Lev; Bitan, Yifat; Shalev, Hadar; Serlin, Yonatan; Friedman, Alon

    2012-09-01

    Psychological stress may lead to long-lasting brain dysfunction, specifically altered emotional and cognitive capabilities. Previous studies have demonstrated persistent changes in the expression of key cholinergic genes in the neocortex and hippocampus following stress with muscarinic receptor-mediated enhanced excitability. In the present study we examined cholinergic-mediated glutamatergic transmission in the hippocampus of mice after exposure to stress and its potential role in synaptic plasticity and altered behavior. Adult male mice were tested one month after repeated forced swimming test. Non-treated age-matched animals served as controls. Electrophysiological recordings were performed in the acute in-vitro slice preparation. CA1 pyramidal neurons were recorded using whole cell patch configuration. Extracellular recordings were done in response to Shaffer collaterals (SC) or stratum orien (SO) stimulation. Animal behavior in response to inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) was tested in open field paradigms. In whole cell patch recordings the frequency of excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs) was significantly increased in response to muscarinic activation in stress-exposed animals. This enhanced cholinergic-modulated excitatory transmission is associated with facilitation of long-term potentiation (LTP) in response to tetanic stimulation at the SO but not at the SC. Stress-related behavioral modulation via central cholinergic pathways was enhanced by the central AChE inhibitor, physostigmine, thus further supporting the notion that stress is associated with long lasting hypersensitivity to acetylcholine. Our results revealed a pathway-specific enhancement of cholinergic-dependent glutamatergic transmission in the hippocampus after stress. These changes may underlie specific hippocampal malfunction, including cognitive and emotional disturbances, as observed in patients with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PMID:22796599

  16. Glutamatergic modulation of synaptic-like vesicle recycling in mechanosensory lanceolate nerve terminals of mammalian hair follicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Banks, R.W.; Cahusac, P.M.; Graca, A.; Kain, N.; Shenton, F.; Singh, P.; Nja, A.; Simon, A.; Watson, S.; Slater, C.R.; Bewick, G.S.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Our aim in the present study was to determine whether a glutamatergic modulatory system involving synaptic-like vesicles (SLVs) is present in the lanceolate ending of the mouse and rat hair follicle and, if so, to assess its similarity to that of the rat muscle spindle annulospiral ending w

  17. The NG2 Protein Is Not Required for Glutamatergic Neuron-NG2 Cell Synaptic Signaling.

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    Passlick, Stefan; Trotter, Jacqueline; Seifert, Gerald; Steinhäuser, Christian; Jabs, Ronald

    2016-01-01

    NG2 glial cells (as from now NG2 cells) are unique in receiving synaptic input from neurons. However, the components regulating formation and maintenance of these neuron-glia synapses remain elusive. The transmembrane protein NG2 has been considered a potential mediator of synapse formation and alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor (AMPAR) clustering, because it contains 2 extracellular Laminin G/Neurexin/Sex Hormone-Binding Globulin domains, which in neurons are crucial for formation of transsynaptic neuroligin-neurexin complexes. NG2 is connected via Glutamate Receptor-Interacting Protein with GluA2/3-containing AMPARs, thereby possibly mediating receptor clustering in glial postsynaptic density. To elucidate the role of NG2 in neuron-glia communication, we investigated glutamatergic synaptic transmission in juvenile and aged hippocampal NG2 cells of heterozygous and homozygous NG2 knockout mice. Neuron-NG2 cell synapses readily formed in the absence of NG2. Short-term plasticity, synaptic connectivity, postsynaptic AMPAR current kinetics, and density were not affected by NG2 deletion. During development, an NG2-independent acceleration of AMPAR current kinetics and decreased synaptic connectivity were observed. Our results indicate that the lack of NG2 does not interfere with genesis and basic properties of neuron-glia synapses. In addition, we demonstrate frequent expression of neuroligins 1-3 in juvenile and aged NG2 cells, suggesting a role of these molecules in synapse formation between NG2 glia and neurons. PMID:25100858

  18. Role of the origin of glutamatergic synaptic inputs in controlling synaptic plasticity and its modulation by alcohol in mice nucleus accumbens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gilles Erwann Martin

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available It is widely accepted that long-lasting changes of synaptic strength in the nucleus accumbens, a brain region involved in drug reward, mediate acute and chronic effects of alcohol. However, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the effects of alcohol on synaptic plasticity is limited by the fact that the nucleus accumbens receives glutamatergic inputs from distinct brain regions (e.g. the prefrontal cortex, the amygdala and the hippocampus, each region providing different information (e.g. spatial, emotional and cognitive. Combining whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and the optogenetic technique, we examined synaptic plasticity, and its regulation by alcohol, at cortical, hippocampal and amygdala inputs in fresh slices of mouse tissue. We showed that the origin of synaptic inputs determines the basic properties of glutamatergic synaptic transmission, the expression of spike-timing dependent long-term depression (tLTD and long-term potentiation (tLTP and their regulation by alcohol. While we observed both tLTP and tLTD at amygadala and hippocampal synapses, we showed that cortical inputs only undergo tLTD. Functionally, we provide evidence that acute EtOH has little effects on higher order information coming from the prefrontal cortex (PFCx, while severely impacting the ability of emotional and contextual information to induce long-lasting changes of synaptic strength.

  19. Glutamatergic synaptic currents of nigral dopaminergic neurons follow a postnatal developmental sequence

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    Edouard ePearlstein

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The spontaneous activity pattern of adult dopaminergic (DA neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc results from interactions between intrinsic membrane conductances and afferent inputs. In adult SNc DA neurons, low-frequency tonic background activity is generated by intrinsic pacemaker mechanisms, whereas burst generation depends on intact synaptic inputs in particular the glutamatergic ones. Tonic DA release in the striatum during pacemaking is required to maintain motor activity, and burst firing evokes phasic DA release, necessary for cue-dependent learning tasks. However, it is still unknown how the firing properties of SNc DA neurons mature during postnatal development before reaching the adult state. We studied the postnatal developmental profile of spontaneous and evoked AMPA and NMDA receptor-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs in SNc DA neurons in brain slices from immature (postnatal days P4-10 and young adult (P30-50 tyrosine hydroxylase (TH-GFP mice. We found that somato-dendritic fields of SNc DA neurons are already mature at P4-10. In contrast, spontaneous glutamatergic EPSCs show a developmental sequence. Spontaneous NMDA EPSCs in particular are larger and more frequent in immature SNc DA neurons than in young adult ones and have a bursty pattern. They are mediated by GluN2B and GluN2D subunit-containing NMDA receptors. The latter generate long-lasting, DQP1105-sensitive, spontaneous EPSCs, which are transiently recorded during this early period. Due to high NMDA activity, immature SNc DA neurons generate large and long lasting NMDA receptor-dependent (APV-sensitive bursts in response to the stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus. We conclude that the transient high NMDA activity allows calcium influx into the dendrites of developing SNc DA neurons.

  20. Interplay between glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission alterations in cognitive and motor impairment in minimal hepatic encephalopathy.

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    Llansola, Marta; Montoliu, Carmina; Agusti, Ana; Hernandez-Rabaza, Vicente; Cabrera-Pastor, Andrea; Gomez-Gimenez, Belen; Malaguarnera, Michele; Dadsetan, Sherry; Belghiti, Majedeline; Garcia-Garcia, Raquel; Balzano, Tiziano; Taoro, Lucas; Felipo, Vicente

    2015-09-01

    The cognitive and motor alterations in hepatic encephalopathy (HE) are the final result of altered neurotransmission and communication between neurons in neuronal networks and circuits. Different neurotransmitter systems cooperate to modulate cognitive and motor function, with a main role for glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission in different brain areas and neuronal circuits. There is an interplay between glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission alterations in cognitive and motor impairment in HE. This interplay may occur: (a) in different brain areas involved in specific neuronal circuits; (b) in the same brain area through cross-modulation of glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission. We will summarize some examples of the (1) interplay between glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission alterations in different areas in the basal ganglia-thalamus-cortex circuit in the motor alterations in minimal hepatic encephalopathy (MHE); (2) interplay between glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission alterations in cerebellum in the impairment of cognitive function in MHE through altered function of the glutamate-nitric oxide-cGMP pathway. We will also comment the therapeutic implications of the above studies and the utility of modulators of glutamate and GABA receptors to restore cognitive and motor function in rats with hyperammonemia and hepatic encephalopathy. PMID:25447766

  1. Dissociation of μ- and δ-opioid inhibition of glutamatergic synaptic transmission in superficial dorsal horn

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    Vaughan Christopher W

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is anatomical and behavioural evidence that μ- and δ-opioid receptors modulate distinct nociceptive modalities within the superficial dorsal horn. The aim of the present study was to examine whether μ- and δ-opioid receptor activation differentially modulates TRP sensitive inputs to neurons within the superficial dorsal horn. To do this, whole cell patch clamp recordings were made from lamina I - II neurons in rat spinal cord slices in vitro to examine the effect of opioids on TRP agonist-enhanced glutamatergic spontaneous miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs. Results Under basal conditions the μ-opioid agonist DAMGO (3 μM reduced the rate of miniature EPSCs in 68% of neurons, while the δ- and κ-opioid agonists deltorphin-II (300 nM and U69593 (300 nM did so in 13 - 17% of neurons tested. The TRP agonists menthol (400 μM and icilin (100 μM both produced a Ca2+-dependent increase in miniature EPSC rate which was unaffected by the voltage dependent calcium channel (VDCC blocker Cd2+. The proportion of neurons in which deltorphin-II reduced the miniature EPSC rate was enhanced in the presence of icilin (83%, but not menthol (0%. By contrast, the proportion of DAMGO and U69593 responders was unaltered in the presence of menthol (57%, 0%, or icilin (57%, 17%. Conclusions These findings demonstrate that δ-opioid receptor activation selectively inhibits inputs activated by icilin, whereas μ-opioid receptor activation has a more widespread effect on synaptic inputs to neurons in the superficial dorsal horn. These findings suggest that δ-opioids may provide a novel analgesic approach for specific, TRPA1-like mediated pain modalities.

  2. Pre-synaptic histamine H₃ receptors modulate glutamatergic transmission in rat globus pallidus.

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    Osorio-Espinoza, A; Alatorre, A; Ramos-Jiménez, J; Garduño-Torres, B; García-Ramírez, M; Querejeta, E; Arias-Montaño, J-A

    2011-03-10

    The globus pallidus, a neuronal nucleus involved in the control of motor behavior, expresses high levels of histamine H(3) receptors (H(3)Rs) most likely located on the synaptic afferents to the nucleus. In this work we studied the effect of the activation of rat pallidal H(3)Rs on depolarization-evoked neurotransmitter release from slices, neuronal firing rate in vivo and turning behavior. Perfusion of globus pallidus slices with the selective H(3)R agonist immepip had no effect on the release of [(3)H]-GABA ([(3)H]-γ-aminobutyric acid) or [(3)H]-dopamine evoked by depolarization with high (20 mM) K(+), but significantly reduced [(3)H]-d-aspartate release (-44.8 ± 2.6% and -63.7 ± 6.2% at 30 and 100 nM, respectively). The effect of 30 nM immepip was blocked by 10 μM of the selective H(3)R antagonist A-331440 (4'-[3-[(3(R)-dimethylamino-1-pyrrolidinyl]propoxy]-[1,1-biphenyl]-4'-carbonitrile). Intra-pallidal injection of immepip (0.1 μl, 100 μM) decreased spontaneous neuronal firing rate in anaesthetized rats (peak inhibition 68.8±10.3%), and this effect was reversed in a partial and transitory manner by A-331440 (0.1 μl, 1 mM). In free-moving rats the infusion of immepip (0.5 μl; 10, 50 and 100 μM) into the globus pallidus induced dose-related ipsilateral turning following systemic apomorphine (0.5 mg/kg, s.c.). Turning behavior induced by immepip (0.5 μl, 50 μM) and apomorphine was partially prevented by the local injection of A-331440 (0.5 μl, 1 mM) and was not additive to the turning evoked by the intra-pallidal injection of antagonists at ionotropic glutamate receptors (0.5 μl, 1 mM each of AP-5, dl-2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid, and CNQX, 6-nitro-7-sulphamoylbenzo[f]quinoxaline-2,3-dione). These results indicate that pre-synaptic H(3)Rs modulate glutamatergic transmission in rat globus pallidus and thus participate in the control of movement by basal ganglia. PMID:21195747

  3. LRRK2 overexpression alters glutamatergic presynaptic plasticity, striatal dopamine tone, postsynaptic signal transduction, motor activity and memory.

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    Beccano-Kelly, Dayne A; Volta, Mattia; Munsie, Lise N; Paschall, Sarah A; Tatarnikov, Igor; Co, Kimberley; Chou, Patrick; Cao, Li-Ping; Bergeron, Sabrina; Mitchell, Emma; Han, Heather; Melrose, Heather L; Tapia, Lucia; Raymond, Lynn A; Farrer, Matthew J; Milnerwood, Austen J

    2015-03-01

    Mutations in leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (Lrrk2) are the most common genetic cause of Parkinson's disease (PD), a neurodegenerative disorder affecting 1-2% of those >65 years old. The neurophysiology of LRRK2 remains largely elusive, although protein loss suggests a role in glutamatergic synapse transmission and overexpression studies show altered dopamine release in aged mice. We show that glutamate transmission is unaltered onto striatal projection neurons (SPNs) of adult LRRK2 knockout mice and that adult animals exhibit no detectable cognitive or motor deficits. Basal synaptic transmission is also unaltered in SPNs of LRRK2 overexpressing mice, but they do exhibit clear alterations to D2-receptor-mediated short-term synaptic plasticity, behavioral hypoactivity and impaired recognition memory. These phenomena are associated with decreased striatal dopamine tone and abnormal dopamine- and cAMP-regulated phosphoprotein 32 kDa signal integration. The data suggest that LRRK2 acts at the nexus of dopamine and glutamate signaling in the adult striatum, where it regulates dopamine levels, presynaptic glutamate release via D2-dependent synaptic plasticity and dopamine-receptor signal transduction. PMID:25343991

  4. Involvement of ClC-3 chloride/proton exchangers in controlling glutamatergic synaptic strength in cultured hippocampal neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raul Enrique Guzman

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available ClC-3 is a member of the CLC family of anion channels and transporters that localizes to early and late endosomes as well as to synaptic vesicles. Its genetic disruption in mouse models results in pronounced hippocampal and retinal neurodegeneration, suggesting that ClC-3 might be important for normal excitatory and/or inhibitory neurotransmission in central neurons. To characterize the role of ClC-3 in glutamate accumulation in synaptic vesicles we compared glutamatergic synaptic transmission in cultured hippocampal neurons from WT and Clcn3-/- mice. In Clcn3-/- neurons the amplitude and frequency of miniature as well as the amplitudes of action-potential evoked EPSCs were significantly increased as compared to WT neurons. The low-affinity competitive AMPA receptor antagonist -DGG reduced the quantal size of synaptic events more effectively in WT than in Clcn3-/- neurons, whereas no difference was observed for the high-affinity competitive non-NMDA antagonist NBQX. Paired pulse ratios of evoked EPSCs were significantly reduced, whereas the size of the readily releasable pool was not affected by the genetic ablation of ClC-3. Electron microscopy revealed increased volumes of synaptic vesicles in hippocampi of Clcn3-/- mice. Our findings demonstrate that ClC-3 controls fast excitatory synaptic transmission by regulating the amount of neurotransmitter as well as the release probability of synaptic vesicles. These results provide novel insights into the role of ClC-3 in synaptic transmission and identify excessive glutamate release as a likely basis of neurodegeneration in Clcn3-/-.

  5. Reduced sensory stimulation alters the molecular make-up of glutamatergic hair cell synapses in the developing cochlea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barclay, M; Constable, R; James, N R; Thorne, P R; Montgomery, J M

    2016-06-14

    Neural activity during early development is known to alter innervation pathways in the central and peripheral nervous systems. We sought to examine how reduced sound-induced sensory activity in the cochlea affected the consolidation of glutamatergic synapses between inner hair cells (IHC) and the primary auditory neurons as these synapses play a primary role in transmitting sound information to the brain. A unilateral conductive hearing loss was induced prior to the onset of sound-mediated stimulation of the sensory hair cells, by rupturing the tympanic membrane and dislocating the auditory ossicles in the left ear of P11 mice. Auditory brainstem responses at P15 and P21 showed a 40-50-dB increase in thresholds for frequencies 8-32kHz in the dislocated ear relative to the control ear. Immunohistochemistry and confocal microscopy were subsequently used to examine the effect of this attenuation of sound stimulation on the expression of RIBEYE, which comprises the presynaptic ribbons, Shank-1, a postsynaptic scaffolding protein, and the GluA2/3 and 4 subunits of postsynaptic AMPA receptors. Our results show that dislocation did not alter the number of pre- or postsynaptic protein puncta. However, dislocation did increase the size of RIBEYE, GluA4, GluA2/3 and Shank-1 puncta, with postsynaptic changes preceding presynaptic changes. Our data suggest that a reduction in sound stimulation during auditory development induces plasticity in the molecular make-up of IHC glutamatergic synapses, but does not affect the number of these synapses. Up-regulation of synaptic proteins with sound attenuation may facilitate a compensatory increase in synaptic transmission due to the reduced sensory stimulation of the IHC. PMID:27012610

  6. Synaptic vesicle cycling is not impaired in a glutamatergic and a cholinergic synapse that exhibit deficits in acidification and filling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bento João Abreu

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of the present work was to investigate synaptic vesicle trafficking when vesicles exhibit alterations in filling and acidification in two different synapses: a cholinergic frog neuromuscular junction and a glutamatergic ribbon-type nerve terminal in the retina. These synapses display remarkable structural and functional differences, and the mechanisms regulating synaptic vesicle cycling might also differ between them. The lipophilic styryl dye FM1-43 was used to monitor vesicle trafficking. Both preparations were exposed to pharmacological agents that collapse ΔpH (NH4Cl and methylamine or the whole ΔµH+ (bafilomycin, a necessary situation to provide the driving force for neurotransmitter accumulation into synaptic vesicles. The results showed that FM1-43 loading and unloading in neuromuscular junctions did not differ statistically between control and experimental conditions (P > 0.05. Also, FM1-43 labeling in bipolar cell terminals proved highly similar under all conditions tested. Despite remarkable differences in both experimental models, the present findings show that acidification and filling are not required for normal vesicle trafficking in either synapse.O objetivo do presente trabalho foi investigar o tráfego de vesículas sinápticas quando estas apresentam alterações no armazenamento de neurotransmissores e acidificação em duas distintas sinapses: a junção neuromuscular colinérgica de rãs versus o terminal nervoso glutamatérgico do tipo ribbon em céulas bipolares da retina. Essas sinapses exibem notáveis diferenças estruturais e funcionais e os mecanismos de regulação de ciclo das vesículas sinápticas podem ser diferentes entre eles. Para monitorar o tráfego de vesícula, foi utilizado o marcador lipofílico FM1-43. Ambas as preparações foram expostas a agentes farmacológicos que provocam o colapso de ΔpH (NH4Cl e metilamina ou de todo ΔµH+ (bafilomicina, gradientes necessários para o ac

  7. Repeated social defeat stress enhances glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the VTA and cocaine place conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stelly, Claire E; Pomrenze, Matthew B; Cook, Jason B; Morikawa, Hitoshi

    2016-01-01

    Enduring memories of sensory cues associated with drug intake drive addiction. It is well known that stressful experiences increase addiction vulnerability. However, it is not clear how repeated stress promotes learning of cue-drug associations, as repeated stress generally impairs learning and memory processes unrelated to stressful experiences. Here, we show that repeated social defeat stress in rats causes persistent enhancement of long-term potentiation (LTP) of NMDA receptor-mediated glutamatergic transmission in the ventral tegmental area (VTA). Protein kinase A-dependent increase in the potency of inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate-induced Ca(2+) signaling underlies LTP facilitation. Notably, defeated rats display enhanced learning of contextual cues paired with cocaine experience assessed using a conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm. Enhancement of LTP in the VTA and cocaine CPP in behaving rats both require glucocorticoid receptor activation during defeat episodes. These findings suggest that enhanced glutamatergic plasticity in the VTA may contribute, at least partially, to increased addiction vulnerability following repeated stressful experiences. PMID:27374604

  8. Peptide and lipid modulation of glutamatergic afferent synaptic transmission in the solitary tract nucleus

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    Michael C. Andresen

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The brainstem nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS holds the first central neurons in major homeostatic reflex pathways. These homeostatic reflexes regulate and coordinate multiple organ systems from gastrointestinal to cardiopulmonary functions. The core of many of these pathways arise from cranial visceral afferent neurons that enter the brain as the solitary tract (ST with more than two-thirds arising from the gastrointestinal system. About one quarter of ST afferents have myelinated axons but the majority are classed as unmyelinated C-fibers. All ST afferents release the fast neurotransmitter glutamate with remarkably similar, high-probability release characteristics. Second order NTS neurons receive surprisingly limited primary afferent information with one or two individual inputs converging on single second order NTS neurons. A- and C-fiber afferents never mix at NTS second order neurons. Many transmitters modify the basic glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic current (EPSC often by reducing glutamate release or interrupting terminal depolarization. Thus, a distinguishing feature of ST transmission is presynaptic expression of G-protein coupled receptors for peptides common to peripheral or forebrain (e.g. hypothalamus neuron sources. Presynaptic receptors for angiotensin (AT1, vasopressin (V1a, oxytocin (OT, opioid (MOR, ghrelin (GHSR1 and cholecystokinin (CCK differentially control glutamate release on particular subsets of neurons with most other ST afferents unaffected. Lastly, lipid-like signals are transduced by two key ST presynaptic receptors, the transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1 and the cannabinoid receptor (CB1 that oppositely control glutamate release. Increasing evidence suggests that peripheral nervous signaling mechanisms are repurposed at central terminals to control excitation and are major sites of signal integration of peripheral and central inputs particularly from the hypothalamus.

  9. Enhanced glutamatergic and decreased GABAergic synaptic appositions to GnRH neurons on proestrus in the rat: modulatory effect of aging.

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    Mohammad Khan

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Previous work by our lab and others has implicated glutamate as a major excitatory signal to gonadotropin hormone releasing hormone (GnRH neurons, with gamma amino butyric acid (GABA serving as a potential major inhibitory signal. However, it is unknown whether GABAergic and/or glutamatergic synaptic appositions to GnRH neurons changes on the day of the proestrous LH surge or is affected by aging. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To examine this question, synaptic terminal appositions on GnRH neurons for VGAT (vesicular GABA transporter and VGLUT2 (vesicular glutamate transporter-2, markers of GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic terminals, respectively, was examined by immunohistochemistry and confocal microscopic analysis in young and middle-aged diestrous and proestrous rats. The results show that in young proestrous rats at the time of LH surge, we observed reciprocal changes in the VGAT and VGLUT2 positive terminals apposing GnRH neurons, where VGAT terminal appositions were decreased and VGLUT2 terminal appositions were significantly increased, as compared to young diestrus control animals. Interestingly, in middle-aged cycling animals this divergent modulation of VGAT and VGLUT2 terminal apposition was greatly impaired, as no significant differences were observed between VGAT and VGLUT2 terminals apposing GnRH neurons at proestrous. However, the density of VGAT and VGLUT2 terminals apposing GnRH neurons were both significantly increased in the middle-aged animals. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: In conclusion, there is an increase in glutamatergic and decrease in GABAergic synaptic terminal appositions on GnRH neurons on proestrus in young animals, which may serve to facilitate activation of GnRH neurons. In contrast, middle-aged diestrous and proestrous animals show a significant increase in both VGAT and VGLUT synaptic terminal appositions on GnRH neurons as compared to young animals, and the cycle-related change in these

  10. Modulatory effects of serotonin on glutamatergic synaptic transmission and long-term depression in the deep cerebellar nuclei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murano, M; Saitow, F; Suzuki, H

    2011-01-13

    The deep cerebellar nuclei (DCN) are the terminal components of the cerebellar circuitry and constitute its primary output structure. Their activity is important for certain forms of motor learning as well as generation and control of movement. DCN neurons receive glutamatergic excitatory inputs from the pontine nuclei via mossy fibres (MFs) and concomitantly receive inputs from 5-HT-containing neurons of the raphe nuclei. We aimed to explore the roles of 5-HT at MF-DCN synapses by using cerebellar slices from 11 to 15-day-old rats. Bath application of 5-HT reversibly decreased the amplitude of stimulation-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (eEPSCs) via the activation of 5-HT1B receptors at the presynaptic terminals of the MFs. Burst stimulation of the MFs elicited long-term depression (LTD) at the MF-DCN synapses that require activation of the group I metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR). In the presence of 5-HT, the extent of burst-induced LTD of MF EPSCs was significantly reduced. Application of 5-HT also decreased the amplitude of mGluR-dependent slow EPSCs evoked by similar burst stimulation. Furthermore, (S)-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG), a group I mGluR agonist, induced chemical LTD of MF EPSCs, and 5-HT had no significant effect on this LTD. Taken together, the results suggest that 5-HT not only has transitory inhibitory effects on MF EPSCs but also plays a role in regulating the long-term synaptic efficacy. PMID:20969929

  11. Synaptic protein levels altered in vascular dementia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinclair, Lindsey I; Tayler, Hannah M; Love, Seth

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Cerebral ischaemia is the defining pathophysiological abnormality in most forms of vascular dementia (VAD), but the pathogenesis of the dementia remains poorly understood. In Alzheimer's disease (AD), there is early loss of synaptic proteins, but these have been little studied in VAD. Materials and Methods We measured synaptophysin, postsynaptic density protein 95 (PSD-95), drebrin, synaptosomal-associated protein 25 (SNAP-25) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays in superior temporal cortex from 11 patients with VAD and, initially, 11 non-dementia controls. We corrected for neuronal content by measurement of neuron-specific enolase. A further 11 controls were subsequently used in a validation study. Simulation of post-mortem delay found that PSD-95 was stable at 4°C but declined slightly at RT. SNAP-25 and drebrin showed good post-mortem stability. Previous studies had shown good post-mortem preservation of synaptophysin and VEGF. Results The VAD cases had lower synaptophysin (but P > 0.05 in initial study), significantly lower SNAP-25 (P = 0.024) and significantly higher drebrin (P = 0.020). On comparison with the second control group, the reduction in synaptophysin was significant (P = 0.008), and the other results were confirmed. Conclusion There is probably a reduction in presynaptic proteins in the temporal cortex in VAD, although not as marked as in AD. In VAD, there is also an increase in drebrin, which may be a response to reduced synaptic input. PMID:25559750

  12. Glutamatergic neuroplasticity in cocaine addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uys, Joachim D; Reissner, Kathryn J

    2011-01-01

    Neuroadaptations among glutamatergic projections within the mesocorticolimbic circuits engaged by drugs of abuse have been described since the 1990s. There is now substantial evidence that drugs of abuse lead to long-term changes in glutamatergic signaling and encompass multiple levels of analysis. For example, cocaine induces changes in extracellular glutamate concentrations and in synaptic glutamatergic transmission. In addition, glutamate receptors are required for the expression of cocaine-related behaviors, and long-term changes have been reported in the expression of proteins at glutamatergic synapses, in glutamate-related redox regulation of neurons, and in glutamatergic synaptic and structural plasticity following chronic exposure to cocaine. In this chapter, we will describe the neurocircuitry involved, and will summarize evidence for adaptations in glutamatergic neuroplasticity as a mechanism for cocaine addiction. Finally, we will discuss progress in the development of glutamate-mediated pharmacotherapies for the treatment of cocaine dependence. PMID:21199777

  13. Altered hippocampus synaptic function in selenoprotein P deficient mice

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    Peters Melinda M

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Selenium is an essential micronutrient that function through selenoproteins. Selenium deficiency results in lower concentrations of selenium and selenoproteins. The brain maintains it's selenium better than other tissues under low-selenium conditions. Recently, the selenium-containing protein selenoprotein P (Sepp has been identified as a possible transporter of selenium. The targeted disruption of the selenoprotein P gene (Sepp1 results in decreased brain selenium concentration and neurological dysfunction, unless selenium intake is excessive However, the effect of selenoprotein P deficiency on the processes of memory formation and synaptic plasticity is unknown. In the present studies Sepp1(-/- mice and wild type littermate controls (Sepp1(+/+ fed a high-selenium diet (1 mg Se/kg were used to characterize activity, motor coordination, and anxiety as well as hippocampus-dependent learning and memory. Normal associative learning, but disrupted spatial learning was observed in Sepp1(-/- mice. In addition, severe alterations were observed in synaptic transmission, short-term plasticity and long-term potentiation in hippocampus area CA1 synapses of Sepp1(-/- mice on a 1 mg Se/kg diet and Sepp1(+/+ mice fed a selenium-deficient (0 mg Se/kg diet. Taken together, these data suggest that selenoprotein P is required for normal synaptic function, either through presence of the protein or delivery of required selenium to the CNS.

  14. Cocaine-Induced Synaptic Alterations in Thalamus to Nucleus Accumbens Projection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neumann, Peter A; Wang, Yicun; Yan, Yijin; Wang, Yao; Ishikawa, Masago; Cui, Ranji; Huang, Yanhua H; Sesack, Susan R; Schlüter, Oliver M; Dong, Yan

    2016-08-01

    Exposure to cocaine induces addiction-associated behaviors partially through remodeling neurocircuits in the nucleus accumbens (NAc). The paraventricular nucleus of thalamus (PVT), which projects to the NAc monosynaptically, is activated by cocaine exposure and has been implicated in several cocaine-induced emotional and motivational states. Here we show that disrupting synaptic transmission of select PVT neurons with tetanus toxin activated via retrograde trans-synaptic transport of cre from NAc efferents decreased cocaine self-administration in rats. This projection underwent complex adaptations after self-administration of cocaine (0.75 mg/kg/infusion; 2 h/d × 5 d, 1d overnight training). Specifically, 1d after cocaine self-administration, we observed increased levels of AMPA receptor (AMPAR)-silent glutamatergic synapses in this projection, accompanied by a decreased ratio of AMPAR-to-NMDA receptor (NMDAR)-mediated EPSCs. Furthermore, the decay kinetics of NMDAR EPSCs was significantly prolonged, suggesting insertion of new GluN2B-containing NMDARs to PVT-to-NAc synapses. After 45-d withdrawal, silent synapses within this projection returned to the basal levels, accompanied by a return of the AMPAR/NMDAR ratio and NMDAR decay kinetics to the basal levels. In amygdala and infralimbic prefrontal cortical projections to the NAc, a portion of cocaine-generated silent synapses becomes unsilenced by recruiting calcium-permeable AMPARs (CP-AMPARs) after drug withdrawal. However, the sensitivity of PVT-to-NAc synapses to CP-AMPAR-selective antagonists was not changed after withdrawal, suggesting that CP-AMPAR trafficking is not involved in the evolution of cocaine-generated silent synapses within this projection. Meanwhile, the release probability of PVT-to-NAc synapses was increased after short- and long-term cocaine withdrawal. These results reveal complex and profound alterations at PVT-to-NAc synapses after cocaine exposure and withdrawal. PMID:27074816

  15. Molecular Profiling of Synaptic Vesicle Docking Sites Reveals Novel Proteins but Few Differences between Glutamatergic and GABAergic Synapses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boyken, Janina; Gronborg, Mads; Riedel, Dietmar; Urlaub, Henning; Jahn, Reinhard; Chua, John Jia En

    2013-01-01

    Neurotransmission involves calcium-triggered fusion of docked synaptic vesicles at specialized presynaptic release sites. While many of the participating proteins have been identified, the molecular composition of these sites has not been characterized comprehensively. Here, we report a procedure to

  16. Stress-induced impairment of glutamatergic terminals ultrastructure: High vulnerability of medial prefrontal cortex and preventing action of desipramine

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nava, N.; Popoli, M.; Musazzi, L.;

    2013-01-01

    Background: Limbic structures where glutamatergic transmission is considered to be prevalent such as amygdala, hippocampus and prefrontal cortex, have shown a deep impairment in stress-related disorders [1]. A number of studies have highlighted the cumulative effects of stress and its major...... mediators, glucocorticoids, on brain volume and dendritic remodeling, in both humans and rodents. Nevertheless, few is still known on the structural changes exerted by behavioral stress on the features of glutamatergic synapses as sites of neuronal communication. Indeed, in excitatory synapses synaptic......, exchange of informations takes place through interaction of glutamate with receptors sitting on the post-synaptic density. Alterations of such synaptic ultrastructure might underlie following impairment of glutamatergic release and transmission. Aim: Main goal of the present study was therefore to shade...

  17. A pivotal role of GSK-3 in synaptic plasticity

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    Clarrisa A Bradley

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3 has many cellular functions. Recent evidence suggests that it plays a key role in certain types of synaptic plasticity, in particular a form of long-term depression (LTD that is induced by the synaptic activation of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA receptors. In the present article we summarise what is currently known concerning the roles of GSK-3 in synaptic plasticity at both glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses. We summarise its role in cognition and speculate on how alterations in the synaptic functioning of GSK-3 may be a major factor in certain neurodegenerative disorders.

  18. Synaptic plasticity, neural circuits, and the emerging role of altered short-term information processing in schizophrenia

    OpenAIRE

    Crabtree, Gregg W.; Gogos, Joseph A.

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity alters the strength of information flow between presynaptic and postsynaptic neurons and thus modifies the likelihood that action potentials in a presynaptic neuron will lead to an action potential in a postsynaptic neuron. As such, synaptic plasticity and pathological changes in synaptic plasticity impact the synaptic computation which controls the information flow through the neural microcircuits responsible for the complex information processing necessary to drive adapt...

  19. Morphological changes of glutamatergic synapses in animal models of Parkinson’s disease

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    Rosa M Villalba

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The striatum and the subthalamic nucleus are the main entry doors for extrinsic inputs to reach the basal ganglia circuitry. The cerebral cortex, thalamus and brainstem are the key sources of glutamatergic inputs to these nuclei. There is functional and neurochemical evidence that glutamatergic neurotransmission is altered in the striatum and subthalamic nucleus of animal models of Parkinson’s disease, and that these changes may contribute to aberrant network neuronal activity in the basal ganglia-thalamocortical circuitry. Postmortem studies of animal models and PD patients have revealed significant pathology of glutamatergic synapses, dendritic spines and microcircuits in the striatum of parkinsonians. More recent findings have also demonstrated a significant breakdown of the glutamatergic corticosubthalamic system in parkinsonian monkeys. In this review, we will discuss evidence for synaptic glutamatergic dysfunction and pathology of cortical and thalamic inputs to the striatum and subthalamic nucleus in models of Parkinson’s disease. The potential functional implication of these alterations on synaptic integration, processing and transmission of extrinsic information through the basal ganglia circuits will be considered. Finally, the significance of these pathological changes in the pathophysiology of motor and non-motor symptoms in Parkinson’s disease will be examined.

  20. Synaptic plasticity, neural circuits and the emerging role of altered short-term information processing in schizophrenia

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    Gregg W. Crabtree

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Synaptic plasticity alters the strength of information flow between presynaptic and postsynaptic neurons and thus modifies the likelihood that action potentials in a presynaptic neuron will lead to an action potential in a postsynaptic neuron. As such, synaptic plasticity and pathological changes in synaptic plasticity impact the synaptic computation which controls the information flow through the neural microcircuits responsible for the complex information processing necessary to drive adaptive behaviors. As current theories of neuropsychiatric disease suggest that distinct dysfunctions in neural circuit performance may critically underlie the unique symptoms of these diseases, pathological alterations in synaptic plasticity mechanisms may be fundamental to the disease process. Here we consider mechanisms of both short-term and long-term plasticity of synaptic transmission and their possible roles in information processing by neural microcircuits in both health and disease. As paradigms of neuropsychiatric diseases with strongly implicated risk genes, we discuss the findings in schizophrenia and autism and consider the alterations in synaptic plasticity and network function observed in both human studies and genetic mouse models of these diseases. Together these studies have begun to point towards a likely dominant role of short-term synaptic plasticity alterations in schizophrenia while dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders may be due to a combination of both short-term and long-term synaptic plasticity alterations.

  1. The Role of the Tripartite Glutamatergic Synapse in the Pathophysiology of Alzheimer’s Disease

    OpenAIRE

    Rudy, Carolyn C.; Hunsberger, Holly C.; Weitzner, Daniel S.; Reed, Miranda N.

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia in individuals over 65 years of age and is characterized by accumulation of beta-amyloid (Aβ) and tau. Both Aβ and tau alter synaptic plasticity, leading to synapse loss, neural network dysfunction, and eventually neuron loss. However, the exact mechanism by which these proteins cause neurodegeneration is still not clear. A growing body of evidence suggests perturbations in the glutamatergic tripartite synapse, comprised of a presyn...

  2. Altered gene regulation and synaptic morphology in Drosophila learning and memory mutants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guan, Zhuo; Buhl, Lauren K; Quinn, William G; Littleton, J Troy

    2011-01-01

    Genetic studies in Drosophila have revealed two separable long-term memory pathways defined as anesthesia-resistant memory (ARM) and long-lasting long-term memory (LLTM). ARM is disrupted in radish (rsh) mutants, whereas LLTM requires CREB-dependent protein synthesis. Although the downstream effectors of ARM and LLTM are distinct, pathways leading to these forms of memory may share the cAMP cascade critical for associative learning. Dunce, which encodes a cAMP-specific phosphodiesterase, and rutabaga, which encodes an adenylyl cyclase, both disrupt short-term memory. Amnesiac encodes a pituitary adenylyl cyclase-activating peptide homolog and is required for middle-term memory. Here, we demonstrate that the Radish protein localizes to the cytoplasm and nucleus and is a PKA phosphorylation target in vitro. To characterize how these plasticity pathways may manifest at the synaptic level, we assayed synaptic connectivity and performed an expression analysis to detect altered transcriptional networks in rutabaga, dunce, amnesiac, and radish mutants. All four mutants disrupt specific aspects of synaptic connectivity at larval neuromuscular junctions (NMJs). Genome-wide DNA microarray analysis revealed ∼375 transcripts that are altered in these mutants, suggesting defects in multiple neuronal signaling pathways. In particular, the transcriptional target Lapsyn, which encodes a leucine-rich repeat cell adhesion protein, localizes to synapses and regulates synaptic growth. This analysis provides insights into the Radish-dependent ARM pathway and novel transcriptional targets that may contribute to memory processing in Drosophila. PMID:21422168

  3. Altered synaptic plasticity in Tourette's syndrome and its relationship to motor skill learning.

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    Valerie Cathérine Brandt

    Full Text Available Gilles de la Tourette syndrome is a neuropsychiatric disorder characterized by motor and phonic tics that can be considered motor responses to preceding inner urges. It has been shown that Tourette patients have inferior performance in some motor learning tasks and reduced synaptic plasticity induced by transcranial magnetic stimulation. However, it has not been investigated whether altered synaptic plasticity is directly linked to impaired motor skill acquisition in Tourette patients. In this study, cortical plasticity was assessed by measuring motor-evoked potentials before and after paired associative stimulation in 14 Tourette patients (13 male; age 18-39 and 15 healthy controls (12 male; age 18-33. Tic and urge severity were assessed using the Yale Global Tic Severity Scale and the Premonitory Urges for Tics Scale. Motor learning was assessed 45 minutes after inducing synaptic plasticity and 9 months later, using the rotary pursuit task. On average, long-term potentiation-like effects in response to the paired associative stimulation were present in healthy controls but not in patients. In Tourette patients, long-term potentiation-like effects were associated with more and long-term depression-like effects with less severe urges and tics. While motor learning did not differ between patients and healthy controls 45 minutes after inducing synaptic plasticity, the learning curve of the healthy controls started at a significantly higher level than the Tourette patients' 9 months later. Induced synaptic plasticity correlated positively with motor skills in healthy controls 9 months later. The present study confirms previously found long-term improvement in motor performance after paired associative stimulation in healthy controls but not in Tourette patients. Tourette patients did not show long-term potentiation in response to PAS and also showed reduced levels of motor skill consolidation after 9 months compared to healthy controls. Moreover

  4. Expression of Glutamatergic Genes in Healthy Humans across 16 Brain Regions; Altered Expression in the Hippocampus after Chronic Exposure to Alcohol or Cocaine

    OpenAIRE

    Enoch, Mary-Anne; Rosser, Alexandra A.; Zhou, Zhifeng; Mash, Deborah C; Yuan, Qiaoping; Goldman, David

    2014-01-01

    We analyzed global patterns of expression in genes related to glutamatergic neurotransmission (glutamatergic genes) in healthy human adult brain before determining the effects of chronic alcohol and cocaine exposure on gene expression in the hippocampus.

  5. Exposure to low-dose rotenone precipitates synaptic plasticity alterations in PINK1 heterozygous knockout mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martella, G; Madeo, G; Maltese, M; Vanni, V; Puglisi, F; Ferraro, E; Schirinzi, T; Valente, E M; Bonanni, L; Shen, J; Mandolesi, G; Mercuri, N B; Bonsi, P; Pisani, A

    2016-07-01

    Heterozygous mutations in the PINK1 gene are considered a susceptibility factor to develop early-onset Parkinson's disease (PD), as supported by dopamine hypometabolism in asymptomatic mutation carriers and subtle alterations of dopamine-dependent striatal synaptic plasticity in heterozygous PINK1 knockout (PINK1(+/-)) mice. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether exposure to low-dose rotenone of heterozygous PINK1(+/-) mice, compared to their wild-type PINK1(+/+) littermates, could impact on dopamine-dependent striatal synaptic plasticity, in the absence of apparent structural alterations. Mice were exposed to a range of concentrations of rotenone (0.01-1mg/kg). Chronic treatment with concentrations of rotenone up to 0.8mg/kg did not cause manifest neuronal loss or changes in ATP levels both in the striatum or substantia nigra of PINK1(+/-) and PINK1(+/+) mice. Moreover, rotenone (up to 0.8mg/kg) treatment did not induce mislocalization of the mitochondrial membrane protein Tom20 and release of cytochrome c in PINK1(+/-) striata. Accordingly, basic electrophysiological properties of nigral dopaminergic and striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs) were normal. Despite the lack of gross alterations in neuronal viability in chronically-treated PINK1(+/-), a complete loss of both long-term depression (LTD) and long-term potentiation (LTP) was recorded in MSNs from PINK1(+/-) mice treated with a low rotenone (0.1mg/kg) concentration. Even lower concentrations (0.01mg/kg) blocked LTP induction in heterozygous PINK1(+/-) MSNs compared to PINK1(+/+) mice. Of interest, chronic pretreatment with the antioxidants alpha-tocopherol and Trolox, a water-soluble analog of vitamin E and powerful antioxidant, rescued synaptic plasticity impairment, confirming that, at the doses we utilized, rotenone did not induce irreversible alterations. In this model, chronic exposure to low-doses of rotenone was not sufficient to alter mitochondrial integrity and ATP production, but

  6. Dynamic changes in cytosolic ATP levels in cultured glutamatergic neurons during NMDA-induced synaptic activity supported by glucose or lactate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lange, Sofie Cecilie; Winkler, Ulrike; Andresen, Lars;

    2015-01-01

    biosensor Ateam1.03YEMK. While inducing synaptic activity by subjecting cultured neurons to two 30 s pulses of NMDA (30 µM) with a 4 min interval, changes in relative ATP levels were measured in the presence of lactate (1 mM), glucose (2.5 mM) or the combination of the two. ATP levels reversibly declined...... following NMDA-induced neurotransmission activity, as indicated by a reversible 10-20 % decrease in the response of the biosensor. The responses were absent when the NMDA receptor antagonist memantine was present. In the presence of lactate alone, the ATP response dropped significantly more than in the...

  7. Disrupted-in-schizophrenia (DISC1 functions presynaptically at glutamatergic synapses.

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    Brady J Maher

    Full Text Available The pathophysiology of schizophrenia is believed to involve defects in synaptic transmission, and the function of many schizophrenia-associated genes, including DISC1, have been linked to synaptic function at glutamatergic synapses. Here we develop a rodent model via in utero electroporation to assay the presynaptic function of DISC1 at glutamatergic synapses. We used a combination of mosaic transgene expression, RNAi knockdown and optogenetics to restrict both genetic manipulation and synaptic stimulation of glutamatergic neurons presynaptic to other layer 2/3 neocortical pyramidal neurons that were then targeted for whole-cell patch-clamp recording. We show that expression of the DISC1 c-terminal truncation variant that is associated with Schizophrenia alters the frequency of mEPSCs and the kinetics of evoked glutamate release. In addition, we show that expression level of DISC1 is correlated with the probability of glutamate release such that increased DISC1 expression results in paired-pulse depression and RNAi knockdown of DISC1 produces paired-pulse facilitation. Overall, our results support a direct presynaptic function for the schizophrenia-associated gene, DISC1.

  8. Transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 receptor regulates glutamatergic synaptic inputs to the spinothalamic tract neurons of the spinal cord deep dorsal horn.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, H; Cui, L; Kim, J; Kim, S J

    2009-05-01

    The spinothalamic tract (STT) neurons in the spinal dorsal horn play an important role in transmission and processing of nociceptive sensory information. Although transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) receptors are present in the spinal cord dorsal horn, their physiological function is not fully elucidated. In this study, we examined the role of TRPV1 in modulating neuronal activity of the STT neurons through excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were performed on STT neurons labeled by a retrograde fluorescent tracer injected into the ventral posterior lateral (VPL) nucleus of the thalamus. Capsaicin (1 microM) increased the frequency of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSC) without changing the amplitude or decay time constant of mEPSC. In contrast, capsaicin had no distinct effect on GABAergic miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSC). Capsazepine (10 microM), a TRPV1 receptor antagonist, abolished the effect of capsaicin on mEPSCs. Capsazepine itself did not affect the baseline amplitude and frequency of mEPSC. The effect of capsaicin on mEPSC was also abolished by removal of external Ca(2+), but not by treatment with Cd(2+). Furthermore, capsaicin increased the firing activity of the STT neurons and this increase in neuronal activity by capsaicin was abolished in the presence of non-N-methyl-d-aspartic acid (NMDA) and NMDA receptor antagonists, 2,3-dihydroxy-6-nitro-7-sulfamoyl-benzo[f]quinoxaline-2,3-dione (NBQX) and (R)-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid (APV). These data suggest that activation of TRPV1 potentiates the glutamate release from excitatory terminals of primary afferent fibers and subsequently increases the neural activity of STT neurons of the rat spinal cord deep dorsal horn. PMID:19236908

  9. Epigenetic alterations are critical for fear memory consolidation and synaptic plasticity in the lateral amygdala.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa S Monsey

    Full Text Available Epigenetic mechanisms, including histone acetylation and DNA methylation, have been widely implicated in hippocampal-dependent learning paradigms. Here, we have examined the role of epigenetic alterations in amygdala-dependent auditory Pavlovian fear conditioning and associated synaptic plasticity in the lateral nucleus of the amygdala (LA in the rat. Using Western blotting, we first show that auditory fear conditioning is associated with an increase in histone H3 acetylation and DNMT3A expression in the LA, and that training-related alterations in histone acetylation and DNMT3A expression in the LA are downstream of ERK/MAPK signaling. Next, we show that intra-LA infusion of the histone deacetylase (HDAC inhibitor TSA increases H3 acetylation and enhances fear memory consolidation; that is, long-term memory (LTM is enhanced, while short-term memory (STM is unaffected. Conversely, intra-LA infusion of the DNA methyltransferase (DNMT inhibitor 5-AZA impairs fear memory consolidation. Further, intra-LA infusion of 5-AZA was observed to impair training-related increases in H3 acetylation, and pre-treatment with TSA was observed to rescue the memory consolidation deficit induced by 5-AZA. In our final series of experiments, we show that bath application of either 5-AZA or TSA to amygdala slices results in significant impairment or enhancement, respectively, of long-term potentiation (LTP at both thalamic and cortical inputs to the LA. Further, the deficit in LTP following treatment with 5-AZA was observed to be rescued at both inputs by co-application of TSA. Collectively, these findings provide strong support that histone acetylation and DNA methylation work in concert to regulate memory consolidation of auditory fear conditioning and associated synaptic plasticity in the LA.

  10. Alteration of AMPA Receptor-Mediated Synaptic Transmission by Alexa Fluor 488 and 594 in Cerebellar Stellate Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maroteaux, Matthieu; Liu, Siqiong June

    2016-01-01

    The fluorescent dyes, Alexa Fluor 488 and 594 are commonly used to visualize dendritic structures and the localization of synapses, both of which are critical for the spatial and temporal integration of synaptic inputs. However, the effect of the dyes on synaptic transmission is not known. Here we investigated whether Alexa Fluor dyes alter the properties of synaptic currents mediated by two subtypes of AMPA receptors (AMPARs) at cerebellar stellate cell synapses. In naive mice, GluA2-lacking AMPAR-mediated synaptic currents displayed an inwardly rectifying current-voltage (I-V) relationship due to blockade by cytoplasmic spermine at depolarized potentials. We found that the inclusion of 100 µm Alexa Fluor dye, but not 10 µm, in the pipette solution led to a gradual increase in the amplitude of EPSCs at +40 mV and a change in the I-V relationship from inwardly rectifying to more linear. In mice exposed to an acute stress, AMPARs switched to GluA2-containing receptors, and 100 µm Alexa Fluor 594 did not alter the I-V relationship of synaptic currents. Therefore, a high concentration of Alexa Fluor dye changed the I-V relationship of EPSCs at GluA2-lacking AMPAR synapses. PMID:27280156

  11. Disrupted-in-Schizophrenia (DISC1) Functions Presynaptically at Glutamatergic Synapses

    OpenAIRE

    Brady J Maher; Joseph J LoTurco

    2012-01-01

    The pathophysiology of schizophrenia is believed to involve defects in synaptic transmission, and the function of many schizophrenia-associated genes, including DISC1, have been linked to synaptic function at glutamatergic synapses. Here we develop a rodent model via in utero electroporation to assay the presynaptic function of DISC1 at glutamatergic synapses. We used a combination of mosaic transgene expression, RNAi knockdown and optogenetics to restrict both genetic manipulation and synapt...

  12. Alterations in Central Nervous System Serotonergic and Dopaminergic Synaptic Activity in Adulthood after Prenatal or Neonatal Chlorpyrifos Exposure

    OpenAIRE

    Aldridge, Justin E; Meyer, Armando; Seidler, Frederic J; Slotkin, Theodore A.

    2005-01-01

    Exposure to chlorpyrifos (CPF) alters neuronal development of serotonin (5HT) and dopamine systems, and we recently found long-term alterations in behaviors related to 5HT function. To characterize the synaptic mechanisms underlying these effects, we exposed developing rats to CPF regimens below the threshold for systemic toxicity, in three treatment windows: gestational days (GD) 17–20, postnatal days (PN) 1–4, or PN11–14. In early adulthood (PN60), we assessed basal neurotransmitter content...

  13. Third Trimester Equivalent Alcohol Exposure Reduces Modulation of Glutamatergic Synaptic Transmission by 5-HT1A Receptors in the Rat Hippocampal CA3 Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morton, Russell A.; Valenzuela, C. Fernando

    2016-01-01

    Fetal alcohol exposure has been associated with many neuropsychiatric disorders that have been linked to altered serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine; 5-HT) signaling, including depression and anxiety. During the first 2 weeks of postnatal life in rodents (equivalent to the third trimester of human pregnancy) 5-HT neurons undergo significant functional maturation and their axons reach target regions in the forebrain (e.g., cortex and hippocampus). The objective of this study was to identify the effects of third trimester ethanol (EtOH) exposure on hippocampal 5-HT signaling. Using EtOH vapor inhalation chambers, we exposed rat pups to EtOH for 4 h/day from postnatal day (P) 2 to P12. The average serum EtOH concentration in the pups was 0.13 ± 0.04 g/dl (legal intoxication limit in humans = 0.08 g/dl). We used brain slices to assess the modulatory actions of 5-HT on field excitatory postsynaptic potentials in the hippocampal CA3 region at P13-P15. Application of the GABAA/glycine receptor antagonist, picrotoxin, caused broadening of field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs), an effect that was reversed by application of 5-HT in slices from air exposed rats. However, this effect of 5-HT was absent in EtOH exposed animals. In slices from naïve animals, application of a 5-HT1A receptor antagonist blocked the effect of 5-HT on the fEPSPs recorded in presence of picrotoxin, suggesting that third trimester ethanol exposure acts by inhibiting the function of these receptors. Studies indicate that 5-HT1A receptors play a critical role in the development of hippocampal circuits. Therefore, inhibition of these receptors by third trimester ethanol exposure could contribute to the pathophysiology of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. PMID:27375424

  14. Kismet positively regulates glutamate receptor localization and synaptic transmission at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rupa Ghosh

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

  15. Xyloside primed glycosaminoglycans alter hair bundle micromechanical coupling and synaptic transmission: Pharmacokinetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holman, Holly A.; Tran, Vy M.; Nguyen, Lynn Y.; Arungundram, Sailaja; Kalita, Mausam; Kuberan, Balagurunathan; Rabbitt, Richard D.

    2015-12-01

    Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) are ubiquitous in the inner ear, and disorders altering their structure or production often result in debilitating hearing and balance deficits. The specific mechanisms responsible for loss of hair-cell function are not well understood. We recently reported that introduction of a novel BODIPY conjugated xyloside (BX) into the endolymph primes fluorescent GAGs in vivo [6, 15]. Confocal and two-photon fluorescence imaging revealed rapid turnover and assembly of a glycocalyx enveloping the kinocilia and extending into the cupula, a structure that presumably serves as a mechanical link between the hair bundle and the cupula. Extracellular fluorescence was also observed around the basolateral surface of hair cells and surrounding afferent nerve projections into the crista. Single unit afferent recordings during mechanical hair bundle stimulation revealed temporary interruption of synaptic transmission following BX administration followed by recovery, demonstrating an essential role for GAGs in function of the hair cell synapse. In the present work we present a pharmacokinetic model to quantify the time course of BX primed GAG production and turnover in the ear.

  16. Xyloside primed glycosaminoglycans alter hair bundle micromechanical coupling and synaptic transmission: Pharmacokinetics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Holman, Holly A.; Nguyen, Lynn Y. [Bioengineering, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (United States); Tran, Vy M.; Arungundram, Sailaja; Kalita, Mausam [Medicinal Chemistry, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (United States); Kuberan, Balagurunathan [Medicinal Chemistry, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (United States); Neuroscience Program, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (United States); Rabbitt, Richard D. [Bioengineering, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (United States); Neuroscience Program, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (United States); Otolaryngology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (United States); Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, Massachusetts (United States)

    2015-12-31

    Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) are ubiquitous in the inner ear, and disorders altering their structure or production often result in debilitating hearing and balance deficits. The specific mechanisms responsible for loss of hair-cell function are not well understood. We recently reported that introduction of a novel BODIPY conjugated xyloside (BX) into the endolymph primes fluorescent GAGs in vivo [6, 15]. Confocal and two-photon fluorescence imaging revealed rapid turnover and assembly of a glycocalyx enveloping the kinocilia and extending into the cupula, a structure that presumably serves as a mechanical link between the hair bundle and the cupula. Extracellular fluorescence was also observed around the basolateral surface of hair cells and surrounding afferent nerve projections into the crista. Single unit afferent recordings during mechanical hair bundle stimulation revealed temporary interruption of synaptic transmission following BX administration followed by recovery, demonstrating an essential role for GAGs in function of the hair cell synapse. In the present work we present a pharmacokinetic model to quantify the time course of BX primed GAG production and turnover in the ear.

  17. Alteration of AMPA Receptor-Mediated Synaptic Transmission by Alexa Fluor 488 and 594 in Cerebellar Stellate Cells1 2 3

    OpenAIRE

    Maroteaux, Matthieu; Liu, Siqiong June

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The fluorescent dyes, Alexa Fluor 488 and 594 are commonly used to visualize dendritic structures and the localization of synapses, both of which are critical for the spatial and temporal integration of synaptic inputs. However, the effect of the dyes on synaptic transmission is not known. Here we investigated whether Alexa Fluor dyes alter the properties of synaptic currents mediated by two subtypes of AMPA receptors (AMPARs) at cerebellar stellate cell synapses. In naive mice, GluA...

  18. Acute and chronic ethanol exposure differentially regulate CB1 receptor function at glutamatergic synapses in the rat basolateral amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Stacey L; Alexander, Nancy J; Bluett, Rebecca J; Patel, Sachin; McCool, Brian A

    2016-09-01

    The endogenous cannabinoid (eCB) system has been suggested to play a key role in ethanol preference and intake, the acute effects of ethanol, and in the development of withdrawal symptoms following ethanol dependence. Ethanol-dependent alterations in glutamatergic signaling within the lateral/basolateral nucleus of the amygdala (BLA) are critical for the development and expression of withdrawal-induced anxiety. Notably, the eCB system significantly regulates both glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic activity within the BLA. Chronic ethanol exposure significantly alters eCB system expression within regions critical to the expression of emotionality and anxiety-related behavior, including the BLA. Here, we investigated specific interactions between the BLA eCB system and its functional regulation of synaptic activity during acute and chronic ethanol exposure. In tissue from ethanol naïve-rats, a prolonged acute ethanol exposure caused a dose dependent inhibition of glutamatergic synaptic activity via a presynaptic mechanism that was occluded by CB1 antagonist/inverse agonists SR141716a and AM251. Importantly, this acute ethanol inhibition was attenuated following 10 day chronic intermittent ethanol vapor exposure (CIE). CIE exposure also significantly down-regulated CB1-mediated presynaptic inhibition at glutamatergic afferent terminals but spared CB1-inhibition of GABAergic synapses arising from local inhibitory-interneurons. CIE also significantly elevated BLA N-arachidonoylethanolamine (AEA or anandamide) levels and decreased CB1 receptor protein levels. Collectively, these data suggest a dynamic regulation of the BLA eCB system by acute and chronic ethanol. PMID:26707595

  19. Deletion of glutamate dehydrogenase 1 (Glud1) in the central nervous system affects glutamate handling without altering synaptic transmission

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frigerio, Francesca; Karaca, Melis; De Roo, Mathias;

    2012-01-01

    was questioned here by generation of CNS-specific GDH-null mice (CnsGlud1(-/-)); which were viable, fertile and without apparent behavioral problems. GDH immunoreactivity as well as enzymatic activity were absent in Cns-Glud1(-/-) brains. Immunohistochemical analyses on brain sections revealed that...... the pyramidal cells of control animals were positive for GDH, whereas the labeling was absent in hippocampal sections of Cns-Glud1(-/-) mice. Electrophysiological recordings showed that deletion of GDH within the CNS did not alter synaptic transmission in standard conditions. Cns-Glud1(-/-) mice...... glutamine transporters and of glutamine synthetase. Present data show that the lack of GDH in the CNS modifies the metabolic handling of glutamate without altering synaptic transmission....

  20. Archaerhodopsin Selectively and Reversibly Silences Synaptic Transmission through Altered pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Gaby, Mohamady; Zhang, Yu; Wolf, Konstantin; Schwiening, Christof J; Paulsen, Ole; Shipton, Olivia A

    2016-08-23

    Tools that allow acute and selective silencing of synaptic transmission in vivo would be invaluable for understanding the synaptic basis of specific behaviors. Here, we show that presynaptic expression of the proton pump archaerhodopsin enables robust, selective, and reversible optogenetic synaptic silencing with rapid onset and offset. Two-photon fluorescence imaging revealed that this effect is accompanied by a transient increase in pH restricted to archaerhodopsin-expressing boutons. Crucially, clamping intracellular pH abolished synaptic silencing without affecting the archaerhodopsin-mediated hyperpolarizing current, indicating that changes in pH mediate the synaptic silencing effect. To verify the utility of this technique, we used trial-limited, archaerhodopsin-mediated silencing to uncover a requirement for CA3-CA1 synapses whose afferents originate from the left CA3, but not those from the right CA3, for performance on a long-term memory task. These results highlight optogenetic, pH-mediated silencing of synaptic transmission as a spatiotemporally selective approach to dissecting synaptic function in behaving animals. PMID:27524609

  1. Alterations in striatal synaptic transmission are consistent across genetic mouse models of Huntington's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Damian M Cummings

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Since the identification of the gene responsible for HD (Huntington's disease, many genetic mouse models have been generated. Each employs a unique approach for delivery of the mutated gene and has a different CAG repeat length and background strain. The resultant diversity in the genetic context and phenotypes of these models has led to extensive debate regarding the relevance of each model to the human disorder. Here, we compare and contrast the striatal synaptic phenotypes of two models of HD, namely the YAC128 mouse, which carries the full-length huntingtin gene on a yeast artificial chromosome, and the CAG140 KI (knock-in mouse, which carries a human/mouse chimaeric gene that is expressed in the context of the mouse genome, with our previously published data obtained from the R6/2 mouse, which is transgenic for exon 1 mutant huntingtin. We show that striatal MSNs (medium-sized spiny neurons in YAC128 and CAG140 KI mice have similar electrophysiological phenotypes to that of the R6/2 mouse. These include a progressive increase in membrane input resistance, a reduction in membrane capacitance, a lower frequency of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents and a greater frequency of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents in a subpopulation of striatal neurons. Thus, despite differences in the context of the inserted gene between these three models of HD, the primary electrophysiological changes observed in striatal MSNs are consistent. The outcomes suggest that the changes are due to the expression of mutant huntingtin and such alterations can be extended to the human condition.

  2. SYNAPTIC PLASTICITY IN THE DENTATE GYRUS OF AGED RATS IS ALTERED AFTER CHRONIC NIMODIPINE APPLICATION

    OpenAIRE

    deJong, GI; Buwalda, B.; Schuurman, T.; Luiten, PGM

    1992-01-01

    We examined ultrastructural correlates of synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus of young (3 months) vs aged (30 months) Wistar rats and established the effects of the calcium antagonist nimodipine in animals chronically treated from 24 to 30 months. The effects of nimodipine was studied since this compound improves hippocampal neuronal physiology and enhances cognitive function during aging. In the supragranular layer of the dentate gyrus we found a 24% decrease in synaptic density (Nv) in a...

  3. Maternal Dexamethasone Exposure Alters Synaptic Inputs to Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Neurons in the Early Postnatal Rat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Wei Ling; Idris, Marshita Mohd; Kevin, Felix Suresh; Soga, Tomoko; Parhar, Ishwar S.

    2016-01-01

    Maternal dexamethasone [(DEX); a glucocorticoid receptor agonist] exposure delays pubertal onset and alters reproductive behavior in the adult offspring. However, little is known whether maternal DEX exposure affects the offspring’s reproductive function by disrupting the gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neuronal function in the brain. Therefore, this study determined the exposure of maternal DEX on the GnRH neuronal spine development and synaptic cluster inputs to GnRH neurons using transgenic rats expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) under the control of GnRH promoter. Pregnant females were administered with DEX (0.1 mg/kg) or vehicle (VEH, water) daily during gestation day 13–20. Confocal imaging was used to examine the spine density of EGFP–GnRH neurons by three-dimensional rendering and synaptic cluster inputs to EGFP–GnRH neurons by synapsin I immunohistochemistry on postnatal day 0 (P0) males. The spine morphology and number on GnRH neurons did not change between the P0 males following maternal DEX and VEH treatment. The number of synaptic clusters within the organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis (OVLT) was decreased by maternal DEX exposure in P0 males. Furthermore, the number and levels of synaptic cluster inputs in close apposition with GnRH neurons was decreased following maternal DEX exposure in the OVLT region of P0 males. In addition, the postsynaptic marker molecule, postsynaptic density 95, was observed in GnRH neurons following both DEX and VEH treatment. These results suggest that maternal DEX exposure alters neural afferent inputs to GnRH neurons during early postnatal stage, which could lead to reproductive dysfunction during adulthood.

  4. Expression of glutamatergic genes in healthy humans across 16 brain regions; altered expression in the hippocampus after chronic exposure to alcohol or cocaine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enoch, M-A; Rosser, A A; Zhou, Z; Mash, D C; Yuan, Q; Goldman, D

    2014-11-01

    We analyzed global patterns of expression in genes related to glutamatergic neurotransmission (glutamatergic genes) in healthy human adult brain before determining the effects of chronic alcohol and cocaine exposure on gene expression in the hippocampus. RNA-Seq data from 'BrainSpan' was obtained across 16 brain regions from nine control adults. We also generated RNA-Seq data from postmortem hippocampus from eight alcoholics, eight cocaine addicts and eight controls. Expression analyses were undertaken of 28 genes encoding glutamate ionotropic (AMPA, kainate, NMDA) and metabotropic receptor subunits, together with glutamate transporters. The expression of each gene was fairly consistent across the brain with the exception of the cerebellum, the thalamic mediodorsal nucleus and the striatum. GRIN1, encoding the essential NMDA subunit, had the highest expression across all brain regions. Six factors accounted for 84% of the variance in global gene expression. GRIN2B (encoding GluN2B), was up-regulated in both alcoholics and cocaine addicts (FDR corrected P = 0.008). Alcoholics showed up-regulation of three genes relative to controls and cocaine addicts: GRIA4 (encoding GluA4), GRIK3 (GluR7) and GRM4 (mGluR4). Expression of both GRM3 (mGluR3) and GRIN2D (GluN2D) was up-regulated in alcoholics and down-regulated in cocaine addicts relative to controls. Glutamatergic genes are moderately to highly expressed throughout the brain. Six factors explain nearly all the variance in global gene expression. At least in the hippocampus, chronic alcohol use largely up-regulates glutamatergic genes. The NMDA GluN2B receptor subunit might be implicated in a common pathway to addiction, possibly in conjunction with the GABAB1 receptor subunit. PMID:25262781

  5. Modulation of swimming behavior in the medicinal leech. IV. Serotonin-induced alteration of synaptic interactions between neurons of the swim circuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mangan, P S; Cometa, A K; Friesen, W O

    1994-12-01

    Serotonin enhances the expression of swimming in the medicinal leech Hirudo medicinalis. These two reports examine the physiological causes underlying this modulation. The initial paper (Mangan et al. 1994) demonstrated that serotonin enhanced the participation of inhibitory swim motor neurons (MNs) in the generation of the swimming rhythm in the isolated nerve cord. In experiments reported here, we examined whether synaptic interactions between neurons of the swim circuit are altered by serotonin. Following exposure to 50 microM serotonin, pairwise intracellular recording revealed the presence of a time-dependent synaptic decrement. Synaptic decrement was characterized by: 1) a substantial decline in synaptic inhibition (half-decay time about 0.4 s) during constant presynaptic excitation; 2) a reduced half-time of recovery from synaptic inhibition; and 3) a strong dependence on the presynaptic neuron's membrane potential. We found little alteration in the physiology of synaptic transmission involving MNs following amine depletion in leech nerve cords. We propose that alterations in synaptic interactions resulting from exposure to elevated serotonin levels, coupled with the changes in MN cellular properties described earlier, are crucial to the increased efficacy of MNs in participating in generating and expressing the leech swimming rhythm. PMID:7807416

  6. Widespread alterations in the synaptic proteome of the adolescent cerebral cortex following prenatal immune activation in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Györffy, Balázs A; Gulyássy, Péter; Gellén, Barbara; Völgyi, Katalin; Madarasi, Dóra; Kis, Viktor; Ozohanics, Olivér; Papp, Ildikó; Kovács, Péter; Lubec, Gert; Dobolyi, Árpád; Kardos, József; Drahos, László; Juhász, Gábor; Kékesi, Katalin A

    2016-08-01

    An increasing number of studies have revealed associations between pre- and perinatal immune activation and the development of schizophrenia and autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Accordingly, neuroimmune crosstalk has a considerably large impact on brain development during early ontogenesis. While a plethora of heterogeneous abnormalities have already been described in established maternal immune activation (MIA) rodent and primate animal models, which highly correlate to those found in human diseases, the underlying molecular background remains obscure. In the current study, we describe the long-term effects of MIA on the neocortical pre- and postsynaptic proteome of adolescent rat offspring in detail. Molecular differences were revealed in sub-synaptic fractions, which were first thoroughly characterized using independent methods. The widespread proteomic examination of cortical samples from offspring exposed to maternal lipopolysaccharide administration at embryonic day 13.5 was conducted via combinations of different gel-based proteomic techniques and tandem mass spectrometry. Our experimentally validated proteomic data revealed more pre- than postsynaptic protein level changes in the offspring. The results propose the relevance of altered synaptic vesicle recycling, cytoskeletal structure and energy metabolism in the presynaptic region in addition to alterations in vesicle trafficking, the cytoskeleton and signal transduction in the postsynaptic compartment in MIA offspring. Differing levels of the prominent signaling regulator molecule calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II in the postsynapse was validated and identified specifically in the prefrontal cortex. Finally, several potential common molecular regulators of these altered proteins, which are already known to be implicated in schizophrenia and ASD, were identified and assessed. In summary, unexpectedly widespread changes in the synaptic molecular machinery in MIA rats were demonstrated which

  7. Propofol, but not etomidate, increases corticosterone levels and induces long-term alteration in hippocampal synaptic activity in neonatal rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Changqing; Seubert, Christoph N; Gravenstein, Nikolaus; Martynyuk, Anatoly E

    2016-04-01

    Animal studies provide strong evidence that general anesthetics (GAs), administered during the early postnatal period, induce long-term cognitive and neurological abnormalities. Because the brain growth spurt in rodents is delayed compared to that in humans, a fundamental question is whether the postnatal human brain is similarly vulnerable. Sevoflurane and propofol, GAs that share positive modulation of the gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptor (GABAAR) function cause marked increase in corticosterone levels and induce long-term developmental alterations in synaptic activity in rodents. If synaptogenesis is affected, investigation of mechanisms of the synaptic effects of GAs is of high interest because synaptogenesis in humans continues for several years after birth. Here, we compared long-term synaptic effects of etomidate with those of propofol. Etomidate and propofol both positively modulate GABAAR activity, but in contrast to propofol, etomidate inhibits the adrenal synthesis of corticosterone. Postnatal day (P) 4, 5, or 6 rats received five injections of etomidate, propofol, or vehicle control during 5h of maternal separation. Endocrine effects of the anesthetics were evaluated by measuring serum levels of corticosterone immediately after anesthesia or maternal separation. The frequency and amplitude of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs) in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons were measured at P24-40 and P≥80. Only propofol caused a significant increase in serum corticosterone levels (F(4.26)=17.739, P<0.001). In contrast to increased frequency of mIPSCs in the propofol group (F(4.23)=8.731, p<0.001), mIPSC activity in the etomidate group was not different from that in the vehicle groups. The results of this study together with previously published data suggest that anesthetic-caused increase in corticosterone levels is required for GABAergic GAs to induce synaptic effects in the form of a long-term increase in the frequency of hippocampal m

  8. Lead Exposure Impairs Hippocampus Related Learning and Memory by Altering Synaptic Plasticity and Morphology During Juvenile Period.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Tao; Guan, Rui-Li; Liu, Ming-Chao; Shen, Xue-Feng; Chen, Jing Yuan; Zhao, Ming-Gao; Luo, Wen-Jing

    2016-08-01

    Lead (Pb) is an environmental neurotoxic metal. Pb exposure may cause neurobehavioral changes, such as learning and memory impairment, and adolescence violence among children. Previous animal models have largely focused on the effects of Pb exposure during early development (from gestation to lactation period) on neurobehavior. In this study, we exposed Sprague-Dawley rats during the juvenile stage (from juvenile period to adult period). We investigated the synaptic function and structural changes and the relationship of these changes to neurobehavioral deficits in adult rats. Our results showed that juvenile Pb exposure caused fear-conditioned memory impairment and anxiety-like behavior, but locomotion and pain behavior were indistinguishable from the controls. Electrophysiological studies showed that long-term potentiation induction was affected in Pb-exposed rats, and this was probably due to excitatory synaptic transmission impairment in Pb-exposed rats. We found that NMDA and AMPA receptor-mediated current was inhibited, whereas the GABA synaptic transmission was normal in Pb-exposed rats. NR2A and phosphorylated GluR1 expression decreased. Moreover, morphological studies showed that density of dendritic spines declined by about 20 % in the Pb-treated group. The spine showed an immature form in Pb-exposed rats, as indicated by spine size measurements. However, the length and arborization of dendrites were unchanged. Our results suggested that juvenile Pb exposure in rats is associated with alterations in the glutamate receptor, which caused synaptic functional and morphological changes in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons, thereby leading to behavioral changes. PMID:26141123

  9. D-serine and serine racemase are associated with PSD-95 and glutamatergic synapse stability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong eLin

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available D-serine is an endogenous coagonist at the glycine site of synaptic NMDA receptors (NMDARs, synthesized by serine racemase (SR through conversion of L-serine. It is crucial for synaptic plasticity and is implicated in schizophrenia. Our previous studies demonstrated specific loss of SR, D-serine-responsive synaptic NMDARs, and glutamatergic synapses in cortical neurons lacking alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, which promotes glutamatergic synapse formation and maturation during development. We thus hypothesize that D-serine and SR (D-serine/SR are associated with glutamatergic synaptic development. Using morphological and molecular studies in cortical neuronal cultures, we demonstrate that D-serine/SR are associated with PSD-95 and NMDARs in postsynaptic neurons and with glutamatergic synapse stability during synaptic development. Endogenous D-serine and SR colocalize with PSD-95, but not presynaptic vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGLUT1, in glutamatergic synapses of cultured cortical neurons. Low-density astrocytes in cortical neuronal cultures lack SR expression but contain enriched D-serine in large vesicle-like structures, suggesting possible synthesis of D-serine in postsynaptic neurons and storage in astrocytes. More interestingly, endogenous D-serine and SR colocalize with PSD-95 in the postsynaptic terminals of glutamatergic synapses during early and late synaptic development, implicating involvement of D-serine/SR in glutamatergic synaptic development. Exogenous application of D-serine enhances the interactions of SR with PSD-95 and NR1, and increases the number of VGLUT1- and PSD-95-positive glutamatergic synapses, suggesting that exogenous D-serine enhances postsynaptic SR/PSD-95 signaling and stabilizes glutamatergic synapses during cortical synaptic development. This is blocked by NMDAR antagonist 2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid (AP5 and 7-chlorokynurenic acid (7-CK, a specific antagonist at the glycine site of NMDARs

  10. D-Serine and Serine Racemase Are Associated with PSD-95 and Glutamatergic Synapse Stability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Hong; Jacobi, Ariel A.; Anderson, Stewart A.; Lynch, David R.

    2016-01-01

    D-serine is an endogenous coagonist at the glycine site of synaptic NMDA receptors (NMDARs), synthesized by serine racemase (SR) through conversion of L-serine. It is crucial for synaptic plasticity and is implicated in schizophrenia. Our previous studies demonstrated specific loss of SR, D-serine-responsive synaptic NMDARs, and glutamatergic synapses in cortical neurons lacking α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, which promotes glutamatergic synapse formation and maturation during development. We thus hypothesize that D-serine and SR (D-serine/SR) are associated with glutamatergic synaptic development. Using morphological and molecular studies in cortical neuronal cultures, we demonstrate that D-serine/SR are associated with PSD-95 and NMDARs in postsynaptic neurons and with glutamatergic synapse stability during synaptic development. Endogenous D-serine and SR colocalize with PSD-95, but not presynaptic vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGLUT1), in glutamatergic synapses of cultured cortical neurons. Low-density astrocytes in cortical neuronal cultures lack SR expression but contain enriched D-serine in large vesicle-like structures, suggesting possible synthesis of D-serine in postsynaptic neurons and storage in astrocytes. More interestingly, endogenous D-serine and SR colocalize with PSD-95 in the postsynaptic terminals of glutamatergic synapses during early and late synaptic development, implicating involvement of D-serine/SR in glutamatergic synaptic development. Exogenous application of D-serine enhances the interactions of SR with PSD-95 and NR1, and increases the number of VGLUT1- and PSD-95-positive glutamatergic synapses, suggesting that exogenous D-serine enhances postsynaptic SR/PSD-95 signaling and stabilizes glutamatergic synapses during cortical synaptic development. This is blocked by NMDAR antagonist 2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid (AP5) and 7-chlorokynurenic acid (7-CK), a specific antagonist at the glycine site of NMDARs, demonstrating

  11. Executive function deficits and glutamatergic protein alterations in a progressive 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pflibsen, Lacey; Stang, Katherine A; Sconce, Michelle D; Wilson, Vanessa B; Hood, Rebecca L; Meshul, Charles K; Mitchell, Suzanne H

    2015-12-01

    Changes in executive function are at the root of most cognitive problems associated with Parkinson's disease. Because dopaminergic treatment does not necessarily alleviate deficits in executive function, it has been hypothesized that dysfunction of neurotransmitters/systems other than dopamine (DA) may be associated with this decrease in cognitive function. We have reported decreases in motor function and dopaminergic/glutamatergic biomarkers in a progressive 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) Parkinson's mouse model. Assessment of executive function and dopaminergic/glutamatergic biomarkers within the limbic circuit has not previously been explored in our model. Our results show progressive behavioral decline in a cued response task (a rodent model for frontal cortex cognitive function) with increasing weekly doses of MPTP. Although within the dorsolateral (DL) striatum mice that had been given MPTP showed a 63% and 83% loss of tyrosine hydroxylase and dopamine transporter expression, respectively, there were no changes in the nucleus accumbens or medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Furthermore, dopamine-1 receptor and vesicular glutamate transporter (VGLUT)-1 expression increased in the mPFC following DA loss. There were significant MPTP-induced decreases and increases in VGLUT-1 and VGLUT-2 expression, respectively, within the DL striatum. We propose that the behavioral decline following MPTP treatment may be associated with a change not only in cortical-cortical (VGLUT-1) glutamate function but also in striatal DA and glutamate (VGLUT-1/VGLUT-2) input. PMID:26332770

  12. Distinct Defects in Synaptic Differentiation of Neocortical Neurons in Response to Prenatal Valproate Exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iijima, Yoko; Behr, Katharina; Iijima, Takatoshi; Biemans, Barbara; Bischofberger, Josef; Scheiffele, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a heterogeneous group of neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by impairments in social interactions and stereotyped behaviors. Valproic acid (VPA) is frequently used to treat epilepsy and bipolar disorders. When taken during pregnancy, VPA increases the risk of the unborn child to develop an ASD. In rodents, in utero VPA exposure can precipitate behavioral phenotypes related to ASD in the offspring. Therefore, such rodent models may allow for identification of synaptic pathophysiology underlying ASD risk. Here, we systematically probed alterations in synaptic proteins that might contribute to autism-related behavior in the offspring of in utero VPA-exposed mice. Moreover, we tested whether direct VPA exposure of cultured neocortical neurons may recapitulate the molecular alterations seen in vivo. VPA-exposed neurons in culture exhibit a significant increase in the number of glutamatergic synapses accompanied by a significant decrease in the number of GABAergic synapses. This shift in excitatory/inhibitory balance results in substantially increased spontaneous activity in neuronal networks arising from VPA-exposed neurons. Pharmacological experiments demonstrate that the alterations in GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic proteins and structures are largely caused by inhibition of histone deacetylases. Therefore, our study highlights an epigenetic mechanism underlying the synaptic pathophysiology in this ASD model. PMID:27264355

  13. Differential Control of Cocaine Self-Administration by GABAergic and Glutamatergic CB1 Cannabinoid Receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín-García, Elena; Bourgoin, Lucie; Cathala, Adeline; Kasanetz, Fernando; Mondesir, Miguel; Gutiérrez-Rodriguez, Ana; Reguero, Leire; Fiancette, Jean-François; Grandes, Pedro; Spampinato, Umberto; Maldonado, Rafael; Piazza, Pier Vincenzo; Marsicano, Giovanni; Deroche-Gamonet, Véronique

    2016-08-01

    The type 1 cannabinoid receptor (CB1) modulates numerous neurobehavioral processes and is therefore explored as a target for the treatment of several mental and neurological diseases. However, previous studies have investigated CB1 by targeting it globally, regardless of its two main neuronal localizations on glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons. In the context of cocaine addiction this lack of selectivity is critical since glutamatergic and GABAergic neuronal transmission is involved in different aspects of the disease. To determine whether CB1 exerts different control on cocaine seeking according to its two main neuronal localizations, we used mutant mice with deleted CB1 in cortical glutamatergic neurons (Glu-CB1) or in forebrain GABAergic neurons (GABA-CB1). In Glu-CB1, gene deletion concerns the dorsal telencephalon, including neocortex, paleocortex, archicortex, hippocampal formation and the cortical portions of the amygdala. In GABA-CB1, it concerns several cortical and non-cortical areas including the dorsal striatum, nucleus accumbens, thalamic, and hypothalamic nuclei. We tested complementary components of cocaine self-administration, separating the influence of primary and conditioned effects. Mechanisms underlying each phenotype were explored using in vivo microdialysis and ex vivo electrophysiology. We show that CB1 expression in forebrain GABAergic neurons controls mouse sensitivity to cocaine, while CB1 expression in cortical glutamatergic neurons controls associative learning processes. In accordance, in the nucleus accumbens, GABA-CB1 receptors control cocaine-induced dopamine release and Glu-CB1 receptors control AMPAR/NMDAR ratio; a marker of synaptic plasticity. Our findings demonstrate a critical distinction of the altered balance of Glu-CB1 and GABA-CB1 activity that could participate in the vulnerability to cocaine abuse and addiction. Moreover, these novel insights advance our understanding of CB1 neuropathophysiology. PMID:26612422

  14. Molecular cause and functional impact of altered synaptic lipid signaling due to a prg-1 gene SNP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogt, Johannes; Yang, Jenq-Wei; Mobascher, Arian; Cheng, Jin; Li, Yunbo; Liu, Xingfeng; Baumgart, Jan; Thalman, Carine; Kirischuk, Sergei; Unichenko, Petr; Horta, Guilherme; Radyushkin, Konstantin; Stroh, Albrecht; Richers, Sebastian; Sahragard, Nassim; Distler, Ute; Tenzer, Stefan; Qiao, Lianyong; Lieb, Klaus; Tüscher, Oliver; Binder, Harald; Ferreiros, Nerea; Tegeder, Irmgard; Morris, Andrew J; Gropa, Sergiu; Nürnberg, Peter; Toliat, Mohammad R; Winterer, Georg; Luhmann, Heiko J; Huai, Jisen; Nitsch, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Loss of plasticity-related gene 1 (PRG-1), which regulates synaptic phospholipid signaling, leads to hyperexcitability via increased glutamate release altering excitation/inhibition (E/I) balance in cortical networks. A recently reported SNP in prg-1 (R345T/mutPRG-1) affects ~5 million European and US citizens in a monoallelic variant. Our studies show that this mutation leads to a loss-of-PRG-1 function at the synapse due to its inability to control lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) levels via a cellular uptake mechanism which appears to depend on proper glycosylation altered by this SNP. PRG-1(+/-) mice, which are animal correlates of human PRG-1(+/mut) carriers, showed an altered cortical network function and stress-related behavioral changes indicating altered resilience against psychiatric disorders. These could be reversed by modulation of phospholipid signaling via pharmacological inhibition of the LPA-synthesizing molecule autotaxin. In line, EEG recordings in a human population-based cohort revealed an E/I balance shift in monoallelic mutPRG-1 carriers and an impaired sensory gating, which is regarded as an endophenotype of stress-related mental disorders. Intervention into bioactive lipid signaling is thus a promising strategy to interfere with glutamate-dependent symptoms in psychiatric diseases. PMID:26671989

  15. mTORC1 Inhibition Corrects Neurodevelopmental and Synaptic Alterations in a Human Stem Cell Model of Tuberous Sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veronica Costa

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Hyperfunction of the mTORC1 pathway has been associated with idiopathic and syndromic forms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD, including tuberous sclerosis, caused by loss of either TSC1 or TSC2. It remains largely unknown how developmental processes and biochemical signaling affected by mTORC1 dysregulation contribute to human neuronal dysfunction. Here, we have characterized multiple stages of neurogenesis and synapse formation in human neurons derived from TSC2-deleted pluripotent stem cells. Homozygous TSC2 deletion causes severe developmental abnormalities that recapitulate pathological hallmarks of cortical malformations in patients. Both TSC2+/− and TSC2−/− neurons display altered synaptic transmission paralleled by molecular changes in pathways associated with autism, suggesting the convergence of pathological mechanisms in ASD. Pharmacological inhibition of mTORC1 corrects developmental abnormalities and synaptic dysfunction during independent developmental stages. Our results uncouple stage-specific roles of mTORC1 in human neuronal development and contribute to a better understanding of the onset of neuronal pathophysiology in tuberous sclerosis.

  16. mTORC1 Inhibition Corrects Neurodevelopmental and Synaptic Alterations in a Human Stem Cell Model of Tuberous Sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Veronica; Aigner, Stefan; Vukcevic, Mirko; Sauter, Evelyn; Behr, Katharina; Ebeling, Martin; Dunkley, Tom; Friedlein, Arno; Zoffmann, Sannah; Meyer, Claas A; Knoflach, Frédéric; Lugert, Sebastian; Patsch, Christoph; Fjeldskaar, Fatiha; Chicha-Gaudimier, Laurie; Kiialainen, Anna; Piraino, Paolo; Bedoucha, Marc; Graf, Martin; Jessberger, Sebastian; Ghosh, Anirvan; Bischofberger, Josef; Jagasia, Ravi

    2016-04-01

    Hyperfunction of the mTORC1 pathway has been associated with idiopathic and syndromic forms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), including tuberous sclerosis, caused by loss of either TSC1 or TSC2. It remains largely unknown how developmental processes and biochemical signaling affected by mTORC1 dysregulation contribute to human neuronal dysfunction. Here, we have characterized multiple stages of neurogenesis and synapse formation in human neurons derived from TSC2-deleted pluripotent stem cells. Homozygous TSC2 deletion causes severe developmental abnormalities that recapitulate pathological hallmarks of cortical malformations in patients. Both TSC2(+/-) and TSC2(-/-) neurons display altered synaptic transmission paralleled by molecular changes in pathways associated with autism, suggesting the convergence of pathological mechanisms in ASD. Pharmacological inhibition of mTORC1 corrects developmental abnormalities and synaptic dysfunction during independent developmental stages. Our results uncouple stage-specific roles of mTORC1 in human neuronal development and contribute to a better understanding of the onset of neuronal pathophysiology in tuberous sclerosis. PMID:27052171

  17. Transgenic mice with increased astrocyte expression of IL-6 show altered effects of acute ethanol on synaptic function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernandez, Ruben V; Puro, Alana C; Manos, Jessica C; Huitron-Resendiz, Salvador; Reyes, Kenneth C; Liu, Kevin; Vo, Khanh; Roberts, Amanda J; Gruol, Donna L

    2016-04-01

    A growing body of evidence has revealed that resident cells of the central nervous system (CNS), and particularly the glial cells, comprise a neuroimmune system that serves a number of functions in the normal CNS and during adverse conditions. Cells of the neuroimmune system regulate CNS functions through the production of signaling factors, referred to as neuroimmune factors. Recent studies show that ethanol can activate cells of the neuroimmune system, resulting in the elevated production of neuroimmune factors, including the cytokine interleukin-6 (IL-6). Here we analyzed the consequences of this CNS action of ethanol using transgenic mice that express elevated levels of IL-6 through increased astrocyte expression (IL-6-tg) to model the increased IL-6 expression that occurs with ethanol use. Results show that increased IL-6 expression induces neuroadaptive changes that alter the effects of ethanol. In hippocampal slices from non-transgenic (non-tg) littermate control mice, synaptically evoked dendritic field excitatory postsynaptic potential (fEPSP) and somatic population spike (PS) at the Schaffer collateral to CA1 pyramidal neuron synapse were reduced by acute ethanol (20 or 60 mM). In contrast, acute ethanol enhanced the fEPSP and PS in hippocampal slices from IL-6 tg mice. Long-term synaptic plasticity of the fEPSP (i.e., LTP) showed the expected dose-dependent reduction by acute ethanol in non-tg hippocampal slices, whereas LTP in the IL-6 tg hippocampal slices was resistant to this depressive effect of acute ethanol. Consistent with altered effects of acute ethanol on synaptic function in the IL-6 tg mice, EEG recordings showed a higher level of CNS activity in the IL-6 tg mice than in the non-tg mice during the period of withdrawal from an acute high dose of ethanol. These results suggest a potential role for neuroadaptive effects of ethanol-induced astrocyte production of IL-6 as a mediator or modulator of the actions of ethanol on the CNS, including

  18. A Rat Model of Alzheimer’s Disease Based on Abeta42 and Pro-oxidative Substances Exhibits Cognitive Deficit and Alterations in Glutamatergic and Cholinergic Neurotransmitter Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrasek, Tomas; Skurlova, Martina; Maleninska, Kristyna; Vojtechova, Iveta; Kristofikova, Zdena; Matuskova, Hana; Sirova, Jana; Vales, Karel; Ripova, Daniela; Stuchlik, Ales

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is one of the most serious human, medical, and socioeconomic burdens. Here we tested the hypothesis that a rat model of AD (Samaritan; Taconic Pharmaceuticals, USA) based on the application of amyloid beta42 (Abeta42) and the pro-oxidative substances ferrous sulfate heptahydrate and L-buthionine-(S, R)-sulfoximine, will exhibit cognitive deficits and disruption of the glutamatergic and cholinergic systems in the brain. Behavioral methods included the Morris water maze (MWM; long-term memory version) and the active allothetic place avoidance (AAPA) task (acquisition and reversal), testing spatial memory and different aspects of hippocampal function. Neurochemical methods included testing of the NR1/NR2A/NR2B subunits of NMDA receptors in the frontal cortex and CHT1 transporters in the hippocampus, in both cases in the right and left hemisphere separately. Our results show that Samaritan rats™ exhibit marked impairment in both the MWM and active place avoidance tasks, suggesting a deficit of spatial learning and memory. Moreover, Samaritan rats exhibited significant changes in NR2A expression and CHT1 activity compared to controls rats, mimicking the situation in patients with early stage AD. Taken together, our results corroborate the hypothesis that Samaritan rats are a promising model of AD in its early stages.

  19. Obesity diminishes synaptic markers, alters microglial morphology, and impairs cognitive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bocarsly, Miriam E; Fasolino, Maria; Kane, Gary A; LaMarca, Elizabeth A; Kirschen, Gregory W; Karatsoreos, Ilia N; McEwen, Bruce S; Gould, Elizabeth

    2015-12-22

    Obesity is a major public health problem affecting overall physical and emotional well-being. Despite compelling data suggesting an association between obesity and cognitive dysfunction, this phenomenon has received relatively little attention. Neuroimaging studies in obese humans report reduced size of brain regions involved in cognition, but few studies have investigated the cellular processes underlying cognitive decline in obesity or the influence of obesity on cognition in the absence of obesity-related illnesses. Here, a rat model of diet-induced obesity was used to explore changes in brain regions important for cognition. Obese rats showed deficits on cognitive tasks requiring the prefrontal and perirhinal cortex. Cognitive deficits were accompanied by decreased dendritic spine density and synaptic marker expression in both brain regions. Microglial morphology was also changed in the prefrontal cortex. Detrimental changes in the prefrontal cortex and perirhinal cortex occurred before metabolic syndrome or diabetes, suggesting that these brain regions may be particularly vulnerable to early stage obesity. PMID:26644559

  20. Altered Striatal Synaptic Function and Abnormal Behaviour in Shank3 Exon4-9 Deletion Mouse Model of Autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaramillo, Thomas C; Speed, Haley E; Xuan, Zhong; Reimers, Jeremy M; Liu, Shunan; Powell, Craig M

    2016-03-01

    Shank3 is a multi-domain, synaptic scaffolding protein that organizes proteins in the postsynaptic density of excitatory synapses. Clinical studies suggest that ∼0.5% of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) cases may involve SHANK3 mutation/deletion. Patients with SHANK3 mutations exhibit deficits in cognition along with delayed/impaired speech/language and repetitive and obsessive/compulsive-like (OCD-like) behaviors. To examine how mutation/deletion of SHANK3 might alter brain function leading to ASD, we have independently created mice with deletion of Shank3 exons 4-9, a region implicated in ASD patients. We find that homozygous deletion of exons 4-9 (Shank3(e4-9) KO) results in loss of the two highest molecular weight isoforms of Shank3 and a significant reduction in other isoforms. Behaviorally, both Shank3(e4-9) heterozygous (HET) and Shank3(e4-9) KO mice display increased repetitive grooming, deficits in novel and spatial object recognition learning and memory, and abnormal ultrasonic vocalizations. Shank3(e4-9) KO mice also display abnormal social interaction when paired with one another. Analysis of synaptosome fractions from striata of Shank3(e4-9) KO mice reveals decreased Homer1b/c, GluA2, and GluA3 expression. Both Shank3(e4-9) HET and KO demonstrated a significant reduction in NMDA/AMPA ratio at excitatory synapses onto striatal medium spiny neurons. Furthermore, Shank3(e4-9) KO mice displayed reduced hippocampal LTP despite normal baseline synaptic transmission. Collectively these behavioral, biochemical and physiological changes suggest Shank3 isoforms have region-specific roles in regulation of AMPAR subunit localization and NMDAR function in the Shank3(e4-9) mutant mouse model of autism. Autism Res 2016, 9: 350-375. © 2015 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26559786

  1. Inflammation subverts hippocampal synaptic plasticity in experimental multiple sclerosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Nisticò

    Full Text Available Abnormal use-dependent synaptic plasticity is universally accepted as the main physiological correlate of memory deficits in neurodegenerative disorders. It is unclear whether synaptic plasticity deficits take place during neuroinflammatory diseases, such as multiple sclerosis (MS and its mouse model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE. In EAE mice, we found significant alterations of synaptic plasticity rules in the hippocampus. When compared to control mice, in fact, hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP induction was favored over long-term depression (LTD in EAE, as shown by a significant rightward shift in the frequency-synaptic response function. Notably, LTP induction was also enhanced in hippocampal slices from control mice following interleukin-1β (IL-1β perfusion, and both EAE and IL-1β inhibited GABAergic spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSC without affecting glutamatergic transmission and AMPA/NMDA ratio. EAE was also associated with selective loss of GABAergic interneurons and with reduced gamma-frequency oscillations in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. Finally, we provided evidence that microglial activation in the EAE hippocampus was associated with IL-1β expression, and hippocampal slices from control mice incubated with activated microglia displayed alterations of GABAergic transmission similar to those seen in EAE brains, through a mechanism dependent on enhanced IL-1β signaling. These data may yield novel insights into the basis of cognitive deficits in EAE and possibly of MS.

  2. A spontaneous, tonic chloride conductance in solitary glutamatergic hippocampal neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Eisenman, Lawrence N.; Kress, Geraldine; Charles F. Zorumski; Mennerick, Steven

    2006-01-01

    GABA-A receptors mediate both phasic synaptic inhibition and more recently appreciated tonic currents in the vertebrate central nervous system. We addressed discrepancies in the literature regarding the pharmacology of tonic currents by examining tonic currents in a controlled environment of dissociated, solitary glutamatergic neurons. We describe a novel tonically active, bicuculline-sensitive chloride conductance that is insensitive to gabazine and to picrotoxin and thus not mediated by con...

  3. Prenatal cocaine reduces AMPA receptor synaptic expression through hyperphosphorylation of the synaptic anchoring protein GRIP

    OpenAIRE

    Bakshi, Kalindi; Gennaro, Serena; Chan, Christopher Y.; Kosciuk, Mary; Liu, Jingjing; Stucky, Andres; Trenkner, Ekkehart; FRIEDMAN, EITAN; Nagele, Robert G; Wang, Hoau-Yan

    2009-01-01

    Prenatal cocaine exposure produces sustained neurobehavioral and brain synaptic changes closely resembling those of animals with defective alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid-type glutamatergic receptors (AMPARs). We hypothesized that prenatal cocaine exposure attenuates AMPAR signaling by interfering with AMPAR synaptic targeting. AMPAR function is governed by receptor cycling on and off the synaptic membrane through its interaction with GRIP, a PDZ domain protein that i...

  4. Innervation by a GABAergic neuron depresses spontaneous release in glutamatergic neurons and unveils the clamping phenotype of synaptotagmin-1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wierda, Keimpe D B; Sørensen, Jakob Balslev

    2014-01-01

    EPSC and mIPSC frequencies did not deviate between autaptic and synaptic connections, the frequency of mEPSCs in mixed pairs was strongly depressed compared with either autaptic neurons or glutamatergic pairs. Simultaneous imaging of synapses, or comparison to evoked release amplitudes, showed that this......The role of spontaneously occurring release events in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons and their regulation is intensely debated. To study the interdependence of glutamatergic and GABAergic spontaneous release, we compared reciprocally connected "mixed" glutamatergic/GABAergic neuronal pairs...... from mice cultured on astrocyte islands with "homotypic" glutamatergic or GABAergic pairs and autaptic neurons. We measured mEPSC and mIPSC frequencies simultaneously from both neurons. Neuronal pairs formed both interneuronal synaptic and autaptic connections indiscriminately. We find that whereas m...

  5. Data-Driven Modeling of Synaptic Transmission and Integration

    OpenAIRE

    Rothman, Jason S.; Silver, R. Angus

    2014-01-01

    In this chapter, we describe how to create mathematical models of synaptic transmission and integration. We start with a brief synopsis of the experimental evidence underlying our current understanding of synaptic transmission. We then describe synaptic transmission at a particular glutamatergic synapse in the mammalian cerebellum, the mossy fiber to granule cell synapse, since data from this well-characterized synapse can provide a benchmark comparison for how well synaptic properties are ca...

  6. The functional nature of synaptic circuitry is altered in area CA3 of the hippocampus in a mouse model of Down's syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, Jesse E; Blank, Martina; Valenzuela, Ricardo A; Garner, Craig C; Madison, Daniel V

    2007-01-01

    Down's syndrome (DS) is the most common cause of mental retardation, and memory impairments are more severe in DS than in most if not all other causes of mental retardation. The Ts65Dn mouse, a genetic model of DS, exhibits phenotypes of DS, including memory impairments indicative of hippocampal dysfunction. We examined functional synaptic connectivity in area CA3 of the hippocampus of Ts65Dn mice using organotypic slice cultures as a model. We found reductions in multiple measures of synaptic function in both excitatory and inhibitory inputs to pyramidal neurons in CA3 of the Ts65Dn hippocampus. However, associational synaptic connections between pyramidal neurons were more abundant and more likely to be active rather than silent in the Ts65Dn hippocampus. Synaptic potentiation was normal in these associational connections. Decreased overall functional synaptic input onto pyramidal neurons expressed along with the specific hyperconnectivity of associational connections between pyramidal neurons will result in predictable alterations of CA3 network function, which may contribute to the memory impairments seen in DS. PMID:17158177

  7. Kidins220/ARMS is a novel modulator of short-term synaptic plasticity in hippocampal GABAergic neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joachim Scholz-Starke

    Full Text Available Kidins220 (Kinase D interacting substrate of 220 kDa/ARMS (Ankyrin Repeat-rich Membrane Spanning is a scaffold protein highly expressed in the nervous system. Previous work on neurons with altered Kidins220/ARMS expression suggested that this protein plays multiple roles in synaptic function. In this study, we analyzed the effects of Kidins220/ARMS ablation on basal synaptic transmission and on a variety of short-term plasticity paradigms in both excitatory and inhibitory synapses using a recently described Kidins220 full knockout mouse. Hippocampal neuronal cultures prepared from embryonic Kidins220(-/- (KO and wild type (WT littermates were used for whole-cell patch-clamp recordings of spontaneous and evoked synaptic activity. Whereas glutamatergic AMPA receptor-mediated responses were not significantly affected in KO neurons, specific differences were detected in evoked GABAergic transmission. The recovery from synaptic depression of inhibitory post-synaptic currents in WT cells showed biphasic kinetics, both in response to paired-pulse and long-lasting train stimulation, while in KO cells the respective slow components were strongly reduced. We demonstrate that the slow recovery from synaptic depression in WT cells is caused by a transient reduction of the vesicle release probability, which is absent in KO neurons. These results suggest that Kidins220/ARMS is not essential for basal synaptic transmission and various forms of short-term plasticity, but instead plays a novel role in the mechanisms regulating the recovery of synaptic strength in GABAergic synapses.

  8. Altered neuronal intrinsic properties and reduced synaptic transmission of the rat's medial geniculate body in salicylate-induced tinnitus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan-Yan Su

    Full Text Available Sodium salicylate (NaSal, an aspirin metabolite, can cause tinnitus in animals and human subjects. To explore neural mechanisms underlying salicylate-induced tinnitus, we examined effects of NaSal on neural activities of the medial geniculate body (MGB, an auditory thalamic nucleus that provides the primary and immediate inputs to the auditory cortex, by using the whole-cell patch-clamp recording technique in MGB slices. Rats treated with NaSal (350 mg/kg showed tinnitus-like behavior as revealed by the gap prepulse inhibition of acoustic startle (GPIAS paradigm. NaSal (1.4 mM decreased the membrane input resistance, hyperpolarized the resting membrane potential, suppressed current-evoked firing, changed the action potential, and depressed rebound depolarization in MGB neurons. NaSal also reduced the excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic response in the MGB evoked by stimulating the brachium of the inferior colliculus. Our results demonstrate that NaSal alters neuronal intrinsic properties and reduces the synaptic transmission of the MGB, which may cause abnormal thalamic outputs to the auditory cortex and contribute to NaSal-induced tinnitus.

  9. Glutamatergic and gabaergic neurotransmission and neuronal circuits in hepatic encephalopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cauli, Omar; Rodrigo, Regina; Llansola, Marta; Montoliu, Carmina; Monfort, Pilar; Piedrafita, Blanca; El Mlili, Nisrin; Boix, Jordi; Agustí, Ana; Felipo, Vicente

    2009-03-01

    Patients with hepatic encephalopathy (HE) may present different neurological alterations including impaired cognitive function and altered motor activity and coordination. HE may lead to coma and death. Many of these neurological alterations are the consequence of altered neurotransmission. Hyperammonemia is a main contributor to the alterations in neurotransmission and in neurological functions in HE. Both glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission are altered in animal models of HE. We review some of these alterations, especially those alterations in glutamatergic neurotransmission responsible for some specific neurological alterations in hyperammonemia and HE: the role 1) of excessive NMDA receptors activation in death induced by acute hyperammonemia; 2) of impaired function of the glutamate-nitric oxide-cGMP pathway, associated to NMDA receptors, in cognitive impairment in chronic HE; 3) of increased extracellular glutamate and activation of metabotropic glutamate receptors in substantia nigra in hypokinesia in chronic HE. The therapeutic implications are discussed. We also review the alterations in the function of the neuronal circuits between basal ganglia-thalamus-cortex modulating motor activity and the role of sequential alterations in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission in these alterations. HE would be a consequence of altered neuronal communication due to alterations in general neurotransmission involving different neurotransmitter systems in different neurons. PMID:19085094

  10. Impaired synaptic plasticity in the prefrontal cortex of mice with developmentally decreased number of interneurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konstantoudaki, X; Chalkiadaki, K; Tivodar, S; Karagogeos, D; Sidiropoulou, K

    2016-05-13

    Interneurons are inhibitory neurons, which protect neural tissue from excessive excitation. They are interconnected with glutamatergic pyramidal neurons in the cerebral cortex and regulate their function. Particularly in the prefrontal cortex (PFC), interneurons have been strongly implicated in regulating pathological states which display deficits in the PFC. The aim of this study is to investigate the adaptations in the adult glutamatergic system, when defects in interneuron development do not allow adequate numbers of interneurons to reach the cerebral cortex. To this end, we used a mouse model that displays ∼50% fewer cortical interneurons due to the Rac1 protein loss from Nkx2.1/Cre expressing cells (Rac1 conditional knockout (cKO) mice), to examine how the developmental loss of interneurons may affect basal synaptic transmission, synaptic plasticity and neuronal morphology in the adult PFC. Despite the decrease in the number of interneurons, basal synaptic transmission, as examined by recording field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) from layer II networks, is not altered in the PFC of Rac1 cKO mice. However, there is decreased paired-pulse ratio (PPR) and decreased long-term potentiation (LTP), in response to tetanic stimulation, in the layer II PFC synapses of Rac1 cKO mice. Furthermore, expression of N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) subunits is decreased and dendritic morphology is altered, changes that could underlie the decrease in LTP in the Rac1 cKO mice. Finally, we find that treating Rac1 cKO mice with diazepam in early postnatal life can reverse changes in dendritic morphology observed in non-treated Rac1 cKO mice. Therefore, our data show that disruption in GABAergic inhibition alters glutamatergic function in the adult PFC, an effect that could be reversed by enhancement of GABAergic function during an early postnatal period. PMID:26926965

  11. IL-6 is increased in the cerebellum of autistic brain and alters neural cell adhesion, migration and synaptic formation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dobkin Carl

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although the cellular mechanisms responsible for the pathogenesis of autism are not understood, a growing number of studies have suggested that localized inflammation of the central nervous system (CNS may contribute to the development of autism. Recent evidence shows that IL-6 has a crucial role in the development and plasticity of CNS. Methods Immunohistochemistry studies were employed to detect the IL-6 expression in the cerebellum of study subjects. In vitro adenoviral gene delivery approach was used to over-express IL-6 in cultured cerebellar granule cells. Cell adhesion and migration assays, DiI labeling, TO-PRO-3 staining and immunofluorescence were used to examine cell adhesion and migration, dendritic spine morphology, cell apoptosis and synaptic protein expression respectively. Results In this study, we found that IL-6 was significantly increased in the cerebellum of autistic subjects. We investigated how IL-6 affects neural cell development and function by transfecting cultured mouse cerebellar granule cells with an IL-6 viral expression vector. We demonstrated that IL-6 over-expression in granule cells caused impairments in granule cell adhesion and migration but had little effect on the formation of dendritic spines or granule cell apoptosis. However, IL-6 over-expression stimulated the formation of granule cell excitatory synapses, without affecting inhibitory synapses. Conclusions Our results provide further evidence that aberrant IL-6 may be associated with autism. In addition, our results suggest that the elevated IL-6 in the autistic brain could alter neural cell adhesion, migration and also cause an imbalance of excitatory and inhibitory circuits. Thus, increased IL-6 expression may be partially responsible for the pathogenesis of autism.

  12. Astrocytes Potentiate Synaptic Transmission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadkarni, Suhita

    2005-03-01

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

  13. Age-Related Alterations in the Expression of Genes and Synaptic Plasticity Associated with Nitric Oxide Signaling in the Mouse Dorsal Striatum

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    Aisa N. Chepkova

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Age-related alterations in the expression of genes and corticostriatal synaptic plasticity were studied in the dorsal striatum of mice of four age groups from young (2-3 months old to old (18–24 months of age animals. A significant decrease in transcripts encoding neuronal nitric oxide (NO synthase and receptors involved in its activation (NR1 subunit of the glutamate NMDA receptor and D1 dopamine receptor was found in the striatum of old mice using gene array and real-time RT-PCR analysis. The old striatum showed also a significantly higher number of GFAP-expressing astrocytes and an increased expression of astroglial, inflammatory, and oxidative stress markers. Field potential recordings from striatal slices revealed age-related alterations in the magnitude and dynamics of electrically induced long-term depression (LTD and significant enhancement of electrically induced long-term potentiation in the middle-aged striatum (6-7 and 12-13 months of age. Corticostriatal NO-dependent LTD induced by pharmacological activation of group I metabotropic glutamate receptors underwent significant reduction with aging and could be restored by inhibition of cGMP hydrolysis indicating that its age-related deficit is caused by an altered NO-cGMP signaling cascade. It is suggested that age-related alterations in corticostriatal synaptic plasticity may result from functional alterations in receptor-activated signaling cascades associated with increasing neuroinflammation and a prooxidant state.

  14. Lrp4 in astrocytes modulates glutamatergic transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xiang-Dong; Li, Lei; Liu, Fang; Huang, Zhi-Hui; Bean, Jonathan C; Jiao, Hui-Feng; Barik, Arnab; Kim, Seon-Myung; Wu, Haitao; Shen, Chengyong; Tian, Yun; Lin, Thiri W; Bates, Ryan; Sathyamurthy, Anupama; Chen, Yong-Jun; Yin, Dong-Min; Xiong, Lei; Lin, Hui-Ping; Hu, Jin-Xia; Li, Bao-Ming; Gao, Tian-Ming; Xiong, Wen-Cheng; Mei, Lin

    2016-08-01

    Neurotransmission requires precise control of neurotransmitter release from axon terminals. This process is regulated by glial cells; however, the underlying mechanisms are not fully understood. We found that glutamate release in the brain was impaired in mice lacking low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 4 (Lrp4), a protein that is critical for neuromuscular junction formation. Electrophysiological studies revealed compromised release probability in astrocyte-specific Lrp4 knockout mice. Lrp4 mutant astrocytes suppressed glutamatergic transmission by enhancing the release of ATP, whose level was elevated in the hippocampus of Lrp4 mutant mice. Consequently, the mutant mice were impaired in locomotor activity and spatial memory and were resistant to seizure induction. These impairments could be ameliorated by blocking the adenosine A1 receptor. The results reveal a critical role for Lrp4, in response to agrin, in modulating astrocytic ATP release and synaptic transmission. Our findings provide insight into the interaction between neurons and astrocytes for synaptic homeostasis and/or plasticity. PMID:27294513

  15. Prenatal immune challenge in rats: altered responses to dopaminergic and glutamatergic agents, prepulse inhibition of acoustic startle, and reduced route-based learning as a function of maternal body weight gain after prenatal exposure to poly IC.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vorhees, Charles V; Graham, Devon L; Braun, Amanda A; Schaefer, Tori L; Skelton, Matthew R; Richtand, Neil M; Williams, Michael T

    2012-08-01

    Prenatal maternal immune activation has been used to test the neurodevelopmental hypothesis of schizophrenia. Most of the data are in mouse models; far less is available for rats. We previously showed that maternal weight change in response to the immune activator polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid (Poly IC) in rats differentially affects offspring. Therefore, we treated gravid Harlan Sprague-Dawley rats i.p. on embryonic day 14 with 8 mg/kg of Poly IC or Saline. The Poly IC group was divided into those that lost or gained the least weight, Poly IC (L), versus those that gained the most weight, Poly IC (H), following treatment. The study design controlled for litter size, litter sampling, sex distribution, and test experience. We found no effects of Poly IC on elevated zero maze, open-field activity, object burying, light-dark test, straight channel swimming, Morris water maze spatial acquisition, reversal, or shift navigation or spatial working or reference memory, or conditioned contextual or cued fear or latent inhibition. The Poly IC (H) group showed a significant decrease in the rate of route-based learning when visible cues were unavailable in the Cincinnati water maze and reduced prepulse inhibition of acoustic startle in females, but not males. The Poly IC (L) group exhibited altered responses to acute pharmacological challenges: exaggerated hyperactivity in response to (+)-amphetamine and an attenuated hyperactivity in response to MK-801. This model did not exhibit the cognitive, or latent inhibition deficits reported in Poly IC-treated rats but showed changes in response to drugs acting on neurotransmitter systems implicated in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia (dopaminergic hyperfunction and glutamatergic hypofunction). PMID:22473973

  16. Prenatal alcohol exposure alters synaptic activity of adult hippocampal dentate granule cells under conditions of enriched environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kajimoto, Kenta; Valenzuela, C Fernando; Allan, Andrea M; Ge, Shaoyu; Gu, Yan; Cunningham, Lee Anna

    2016-08-01

    Prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE) results in fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD), which is characterized by a wide range of cognitive and behavioral deficits that may be linked to impaired hippocampal function and adult neurogenesis. Preclinical studies in mouse models of FASD indicate that PAE markedly attenuates enrichment-mediated increases in the number of adult-generated hippocampal dentate granule cells (aDGCs), but whether synaptic activity is also affected has not been studied. Here, we utilized retroviral birth-dating coupled with whole cell patch electrophysiological recordings to assess the effects of PAE on enrichment-mediated changes in excitatory and inhibitory synaptic activity as a function of DGC age. We found that exposure to an enriched environment (EE) had no effect on baseline synaptic activity of 4- or 8-week-old aDGCs from control mice, but significantly enhanced the excitatory/inhibitory ratio of synaptic activity in 8-week-old aDGCs from PAE mice. In contrast, exposure to EE significantly enhanced the excitatory/inhibitory ratio of synaptic activity in older pre-existing DGCs situated in the outer dentate granule cell layer (i.e., those generated during embryonic development; dDGCs) in control mice, an effect that was blunted in PAE mice. These findings indicate distinct electrophysiological responses of hippocampal DGCs to behavioral challenge based on cellular ontogenetic age, and suggest that PAE disrupts EE-mediated changes in overall hippocampal network activity. These findings may have implications for future therapeutic targeting of hippocampal dentate circuitry in clinical FASD. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27009742

  17. Cannabinoid agonists rearrange synaptic vesicles at excitatory synapses and depress motoneuron activity in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Morales, Victoria; Montero, Fernando; Moreno-López, Bernardo

    2015-05-01

    Impairment of motor skills is one of the most common acute adverse effects of cannabis. Related studies have focused mainly on psychomotor alterations, and little is known about the direct impact of cannabinoids (CBs) on motoneuron physiology. As key modulators of synaptic function, CBs regulate multiple neuronal functions and behaviors. Presynaptic CB1 mediates synaptic strength depression by inhibiting neurotransmitter release, via a poorly understood mechanism. The present study examined the effect of CB agonists on excitatory synaptic inputs incoming to hypoglossal motoneurons (HMNs) in vitro and in vivo. The endocannabinoid anandamide (AEA) and the synthetic CB agonist WIN 55,212-2 rapidly and reversibly induced short-term depression (STD) of glutamatergic synapses on motoneurons by a presynaptic mechanism. Presynaptic effects were fully reversed by the CB1-selective antagonist AM281. Electrophysiological and electron microscopy analysis showed that WIN 55,212-2 reduced the number of synaptic vesicles (SVs) docked to active zones in excitatory boutons. Given that AM281 fully abolished depolarization-induced depression of excitation, motoneurons can be feasible sources of CBs, which in turn act as retrograde messengers regulating synaptic function. Finally, microiontophoretic application of the CB agonist O-2545 reversibly depressed, presumably via CB1, glutamatergic inspiratory-related activity of HMNs in vivo. Therefore, evidence support that CBs, via presynaptic CB1, induce excitatory STD by reducing the readily releasable pool of SVs at excitatory synapses, then attenuating motoneuron activity. These outcomes contribute a possible mechanistic basis for cannabis-associated motor performance disturbances such as ataxia, dysarthria and dyscoordination. PMID:25595101

  18. A Computational Model to Investigate Astrocytic Glutamate Uptake Influence on Synaptic Transmission and Neuronal Spiking

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    Sushmita Lakshmi Allam

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Over the past decades, our view of astrocytes has switched from passive support cells to active processing elements in the brain. The current view is that astrocytes shape neuronal communication and also play an important role in many neurodegenerative diseases. Despite the growing awareness of the importance of astrocytes, the exact mechanisms underlying neuron-astrocyte communication and the physiological consequences of astrocytic-neuronal interactions remain largely unclear. In this work, we define a modeling framework that will permit to address unanswered questions regarding the role of astrocytes. Our computational model of a detailed glutamatergic synapse facilitates the analysis of neural system responses to various stimuli and conditions that are otherwise difficult to obtain experimentally, in particular the readouts at the sub-cellular level. In this paper, we extend a detailed glutamatergic synaptic model, to include astrocytic glutamate transporters. We demonstrate how these glial transporters, responsible for the majority of glutamate uptake, modulate synaptic transmission mediated by ionotropic AMPA and NMDA receptors at glutamatergic synapses. Furthermore, we investigate how these local signaling effects at the synaptic level are translated into varying spatio-temporal patterns of neuron firing. Paired pulse stimulation results reveal that the effect of astrocytic glutamate uptake is more apparent when the input inter-spike interval is sufficiently long to allow the receptors to recover from desensitization. These results suggest an important functional role of astrocytes in spike timing dependent processes and demand further investigation of the molecular basis of certain neurological diseases specifically related to alterations in astrocytic glutamate uptake, such as epilepsy.

  19. Neuroligin 1 Modulates Striatal Glutamatergic Neurotransmission in a Pathway and NMDAR Subunit-Specific Manner

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    Felipe Espinosa

    2015-07-01

    Together with its presynaptic partner Neurexin 1 (Nxn1, Neuroligin 1 (NL1 participates in synapse specification and synapse maintenance. We and others have shown that NL1 can also modulate glutamatergic synaptic function in the central nervous system of rodent models. These molecular/cellular changes can translate into altered animal behaviors that are thought to be analogous to symptomatology of neuropsychiatric disorders. For example, in dorsal striatum of NL1 deletion mice, we previously reported that the ratio N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR mediated synaptic currents to α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole-propionate receptor (AMPAR mediated synaptic currents (NMDA/AMPA is reduced in medium spiny neurons. Importantly, this reduction in NMDA/AMPA ratio correlated with increased repetitive grooming. The striatum is the input nucleus of the basal ganglia. Classical models of this circuitry imply that there are two principal pathways that render distinct and somewhat opposite striatal outputs critical to the function of these nuclei in modulating motor behavior. Thus, we set out to better characterize the effects of NL1 deletion on direct and indirect pathways of the dorsal striatum by genetically labeling medium spiny neurons participating in the direct and indirect pathways. We demonstrate that a decrease in NMDAR-mediated currents is limited to medium spiny neurons of the direct pathway. Furthermore, the decrease in NMDAR-mediated currents is largely due to a reduction in function of NMDARs containing the GluN2A subunit. In contrast, indirect pathway medium spiny neurons in NL1 KO mice showed a reduction in the frequency of miniature excitatory neurotransmission not observed in the direct pathway. Thus, NL1 deletion differentially affects direct and indirect pathway medium spiny neurons in dorsal striatum. These findings have potential implications for striatal function in NL1 KO mice.

  20. Role of nucleus accumbens glutamatergic plasticity in drug addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quintero, Gabriel C

    2013-01-01

    Substance dependence is characterized by a group of symptoms, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition, Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR). These symptoms include tolerance, withdrawal, drug consumption for alleviating withdrawal, exaggerated consumption beyond original intention, failure to reduce drug consumption, expending a considerable amount of time obtaining or recovering from the substance's effects, disregard of basic aspects of life (for example, family), and maintenance of drug consumption, despite facing adverse consequences. The nucleus accumbens (NAc) is a brain structure located in the basal forebrain of vertebrates, and it has been the target of addictive drugs. Different neurotransmitter systems at the level of the NAc circuitry have been linked to the different problems of drug addiction, like compulsive use and relapse. The glutamate system has been linked mainly to relapse after drug-seeking extinction. The dopamine system has been linked mainly to compulsive drug use. The glutamate homeostasis hypothesis centers around the dynamics of synaptic and extrasynaptic levels of glutamate, and their impact on circuitry from the prefrontal cortex (PFC) to the NAc. After repetitive drug use, deregulation of this homeostasis increases the release of glutamate from the PFC to the NAc during drug relapse. Glial cells also play a fundamental role in this hypothesis; glial cells shape the interactions between the PFC and the NAc by means of altering glutamate levels in synaptic and extrasynaptic spaces. On the other hand, cocaine self-administration and withdrawal increases the surface expression of subunit glutamate receptor 1 (GluA1) of alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptors at the level of the NAc. Also, cocaine self-administration and withdrawal induce the formation of subunit glutamate receptor 2 (GluA2), lacking the Ca(2+)-permeable AMPA receptors (CP-AMPARs) at the level of the NAc

  1. Role of nucleus accumbens glutamatergic plasticity in drug addiction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quintero, Gabriel C

    2013-01-01

    Substance dependence is characterized by a group of symptoms, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition, Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR). These symptoms include tolerance, withdrawal, drug consumption for alleviating withdrawal, exaggerated consumption beyond original intention, failure to reduce drug consumption, expending a considerable amount of time obtaining or recovering from the substance’s effects, disregard of basic aspects of life (for example, family), and maintenance of drug consumption, despite facing adverse consequences. The nucleus accumbens (NAc) is a brain structure located in the basal forebrain of vertebrates, and it has been the target of addictive drugs. Different neurotransmitter systems at the level of the NAc circuitry have been linked to the different problems of drug addiction, like compulsive use and relapse. The glutamate system has been linked mainly to relapse after drug-seeking extinction. The dopamine system has been linked mainly to compulsive drug use. The glutamate homeostasis hypothesis centers around the dynamics of synaptic and extrasynaptic levels of glutamate, and their impact on circuitry from the prefrontal cortex (PFC) to the NAc. After repetitive drug use, deregulation of this homeostasis increases the release of glutamate from the PFC to the NAc during drug relapse. Glial cells also play a fundamental role in this hypothesis; glial cells shape the interactions between the PFC and the NAc by means of altering glutamate levels in synaptic and extrasynaptic spaces. On the other hand, cocaine self-administration and withdrawal increases the surface expression of subunit glutamate receptor 1 (GluA1) of alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptors at the level of the NAc. Also, cocaine self-administration and withdrawal induce the formation of subunit glutamate receptor 2 (GluA2), lacking the Ca2+-permeable AMPA receptors (CP-AMPARs) at the level of the NAc

  2. SYN2 is an autism predisposing gene: loss-of-function mutations alter synaptic vesicle cycling and axon outgrowth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corradi, Anna; Fadda, Manuela; Piton, Amélie; Patry, Lysanne; Marte, Antonella; Rossi, Pia; Cadieux-Dion, Maxime; Gauthier, Julie; Lapointe, Line; Mottron, Laurent; Valtorta, Flavia; Rouleau, Guy A; Fassio, Anna; Benfenati, Fabio; Cossette, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    An increasing number of genes predisposing to autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) has been identified, many of which are implicated in synaptic function. This 'synaptic autism pathway' notably includes disruption of SYN1 that is associated with epilepsy, autism and abnormal behavior in both human and mice models. Synapsins constitute a multigene family of neuron-specific phosphoproteins (SYN1-3) present in the majority of synapses where they are implicated in the regulation of neurotransmitter release and synaptogenesis. Synapsins I and II, the major Syn isoforms in the adult brain, display partially overlapping functions and defects in both isoforms are associated with epilepsy and autistic-like behavior in mice. In this study, we show that nonsense (A94fs199X) and missense (Y236S and G464R) mutations in SYN2 are associated with ASD in humans. The phenotype is apparent in males. Female carriers of SYN2 mutations are unaffected, suggesting that SYN2 is another example of autosomal sex-limited expression in ASD. When expressed in SYN2  knockout neurons, wild-type human Syn II fully rescues the SYN2 knockout phenotype, whereas the nonsense mutant is not expressed and the missense mutants are virtually unable to modify the SYN2 knockout phenotype. These results identify for the first time SYN2  as a novel predisposing gene for ASD and strengthen the hypothesis that a disturbance of synaptic homeostasis underlies ASD. PMID:23956174

  3. The neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+ alters hippocampal excitatory synaptic transmission by modulation of the GABAergic system

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    YuYing eHuang

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP induces Parkinson’s disease (PD-like symptoms following administration to mice, monkeys and humans. A common view is that MPTP is metabolized to 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium ion (MPP+ to induce its neurodegenerative effects on dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. Moreover, the hippocampus contains dopaminergic fibers, which are projecting from the ventral tegmental area, substantia nigra and pars compacta and contain the whole machinery required for dopamine synthesis making them sensitive to MPTP and MPP+. Here we present data showing that acute bath-application of MPP+ elicited a dose-dependent facilitation followed by a depression of synaptic transmission of hippocampal Schaffer collaterals-CA1 synapses in mice. The effects of MPP+ were not mediated by D1/D5- and D2-like receptor activation. Inhibition of the dopamine transporters (DAT did not prevent but increased the depression of excitatory postsynaptic field potentials. In the search for a possible mechanism, we observed that MPP+ reduced the appearance of polyspikes in population spikes recorded in str. pyramidale and increased the frequency of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents. The acute effect of MPP+ on synaptic transmission was attenuated by co-application of a GABAA receptor antagonist. Taking these data together, we suggest that MPP+ affects hippocampal synaptic transmission by enhancing some aspects of

  4. Glutamatergic postsynaptic block by Pamphobeteus spider venoms in crayfish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araque, A; Ferreira, W; Lucas, S; Buño, W

    1992-01-31

    The effects of toxins from venom glands of two south american spiders (Pamphobeteus platyomma and P. soracabae) on glutamatergic excitatory synaptic transmission were studied in the neuromuscular junction of the opener muscle of crayfish. The toxins selectively and reversibly blocked both excitatory postsynaptic currents and potentials in a dose-dependent manner. They also reversibly abolished glutamate-induced postsynaptic membrane depolarization. They had no effect on resting postsynaptic membrane conductance nor on postsynaptic voltage-gated currents. The synaptic facilitation and the frequency of miniature postsynaptic potentials were unaffected by the toxins, indicating that presynaptic events were not modified. Picrotoxin, a selective antagonist of the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptor, did not modify toxin effects. We conclude that both toxins specifically block the postsynaptic glutamate receptor-channel complex. PMID:1319261

  5. Naturally occurring compounds affect glutamatergic neurotransmission in rat brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martini, Lucia Helena; Jung, Fernanda; Soares, Felix Antunes; Rotta, Liane Nanci; Vendite, Deusa Aparecida; Frizzo, Marcos Emilio dos Santos; Yunes, Rosendo A; Calixto, João Batista; Wofchuk, Susana; Souza, Diogo O

    2007-11-01

    Natural products, including those derived from plants, have largely contributed to the development of therapeutic drugs. Glutamate is the main excitatory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system and it is also considered a nociceptive neurotransmitter, by acting on peripheral nervous system. For this reason, in this study we investigated the effects of the hydroalcoholic extracts from Drymis winteri (polygodial and drimanial), Phyllanthus (rutin and quercetine), Jathopha elliptica (jatrophone), Hedyosmum brasiliense (13HDS), Ocotea suaveolens (Tormentic acid), Protium kleinii (alphabeta-amyrin), Citrus paradise (naringin), soybean (genistein) and Crataeva nurvala (lupeol), described as having antinociceptive effects, on glutamatergic transmission parameters, such as [(3)H]glutamate binding, [(3)H]glutamate uptake by synaptic vesicles and astrocyte cultures, and synaptosomal [(3)H]glutamate release. All the glutamatergic parameters were affected by one or more of these compounds. Specifically, drimanial and polygodial presented more broad and profound effects, requiring more investigation on their mechanisms. The putative central side effects of these compounds, via the glutamatergic system, are discussed. PMID:17577666

  6. Kalirin Binds the NR2B Subunit of the NMDA Receptor, Altering Its Synaptic Localization and Function

    KAUST Repository

    Kiraly, D. D.

    2011-08-31

    The ability of dendritic spines to change size and shape rapidly is critical in modulating synaptic strength; these morphological changes are dependent upon rearrangements of the actin cytoskeleton. Kalirin-7 (Kal7), a Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factor localized to the postsynaptic density (PSD), modulates dendritic spine morphology in vitro and in vivo. Kal7 activates Rac and interacts with several PSD proteins, including PSD-95, DISC-1, AF-6, and Arf6. Mice genetically lacking Kal7 (Kal7KO) exhibit deficient hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP) as well as behavioral abnormalities in models of addiction and learning. Purified PSDs from Kal7KO mice contain diminished levels of NR2B, an NMDA receptor subunit that plays a critical role in LTP induction. Here we demonstrate that Kal7KO animals have decreased levels of NR2B-dependent NMDA receptor currents in cortical pyramidal neurons as well as a specific deficit in cell surface expression of NR2B. Additionally, we demonstrate that the genotypic differences in conditioned place preference and passive avoidance learning seen in Kal7KO mice are abrogated when animals are treated with an NR2B-specific antagonist during conditioning. Finally, we identify a stable interaction between the pleckstrin homology domain of Kal7 and the juxtamembrane region of NR2B preceding its cytosolic C-terminal domain. Binding of NR2B to a protein that modulates the actin cytoskeleton is important, as NMDA receptors require actin integrity for synaptic localization and function. These studies demonstrate a novel and functionally important interaction between the NR2B subunit of the NMDA receptor and Kalirin, proteins known to be essential for normal synaptic plasticity.

  7. Altered synaptic marker abundance in the hippocampal stratum oriens of Ts65Dn mice is associated with exuberant expression of versican

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    Paul E Gottschall

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available DS (Down syndrome, resulting from trisomy of chromosome 21, is the most common cause of genetic mental retardation; however, the molecular mechanisms underlying the cognitive deficits are poorly understood. Growing data indicate that changes in abundance or type of CSPGs (chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans in the ECM (extracellular matrix can influence synaptic structure and plasticity. The purpose of this study was to identify changes in synaptic structure in the hippocampus in a model of DS, the Ts65Dn mouse, and to determine the relationship to proteoglycan abundance and/or cleavage and cognitive disability. We measured synaptic proteins by ELISA and changes in lectican expression and processing in the hippocampus of young and old Ts65Dn mice and LMCs (littermate controls. In young (5 months old Ts65Dn hippocampal extracts, we found a significant increase in the postsynaptic protein PSD-95 (postsynaptic density 95 compared with LMCs. In aged (20 months old Ts65Dn hippocampus, this increase was localized to hippocampal stratum oriens extracts compared with LMCs. Aged Ts65Dn mice exhibited impaired hippocampal-dependent spatial learning and memory in the RAWM (radial-arm water maze and a marked increase in levels of the lectican versican V2 in stratum oriens that correlated with the number of errors made in the final RAWM block. Ts65Dn stratum oriens PNNs (perineuronal nets, an extension of the ECM enveloping mostly inhibitory interneurons, were dispersed over a larger area compared with LMC mice. Taken together, these data suggest a possible association with alterations in the ECM and inhibitory neurotransmission in the Ts65Dn hippocampus which could contribute to cognitive deficits.

  8. Early Fear Memory Defects Are Associated with Altered Synaptic Plasticity and Molecular Architecture in the TgCRND8 Alzheimer's Disease Mouse Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steele, John W.; Brautigam, Hannah; Short, Jennifer A.; Sowa, Allison; Shi, Mengxi; Yadav, Aniruddha; Weaver, Christina M.; Westaway, David; Fraser, Paul E.; St George-Hyslop, Peter H.; Gandy, Sam; Hof, Patrick R.; Dickstein, Dara L.

    2014-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a complex and slowly progressing dementing disorder that results in neuronal and synaptic loss, deposition in brain of aberrantly folded proteins, and impairment of spatial and episodic memory. Most studies of mouse models of AD have employed analyses of cognitive status and assessment of amyloid burden, gliosis, and molecular pathology during disease progression. Here, we sought to understand the behavioral, cellular, ultrastructural, and molecular changes that occur at a pathological stage equivalent to early stages of human AD. We studied the TgCRND8 mouse, a model of aggressive AD amyloidosis, at an early stage of plaque pathology (3 months of age) in comparison to their wild-type littermates and assessed changes in cognition, neuron and spine structure, and expression of synaptic glutamate receptor proteins. We found that, at this age, TgCRND8 mice display substantial plaque deposition in the neocortex and hippocampus and impairment on cued and contextual memory tasks. Of particular interest, we also observed a significant decrease in the number of neurons in the hippocampus. Furthermore, analysis of CA1 neurons revealed significant changes in apical and basal dendritic spine types, as well as altered expression of GluN1 and GluA2 receptors. This change in molecular architecture within the hippocampus may reflect a rising representation of inherently less stable thin spine populations, which can cause cognitive decline. These changes, taken together with toxic insults from amyloid-β protein, may underlie the observed neuronal loss. PMID:24415002

  9. Morphological changes of glutamatergic synapses in animal models of Parkinson’s disease

    OpenAIRE

    Villalba, Rosa M.; Yoland Smith

    2015-01-01

    The striatum and the subthalamic nucleus are the main entry doors for extrinsic inputs to reach the basal ganglia circuitry. The cerebral cortex, thalamus and brainstem are the key sources of glutamatergic inputs to these nuclei. There is functional and neurochemical evidence that glutamatergic neurotransmission is altered in the striatum and subthalamic nucleus of animal models of Parkinson’s disease, and that these changes may contribute to aberrant network neuronal activity in the basal ga...

  10. Understanding complexities of synaptic transmission in medically intractable seizures: A paradigm of epilepsy research

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    Jyotirmoy Banerjee

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Investigating the changes associated with the development of epileptic state in humans is complex and requires a multidisciplinary approach. Understanding the intricacies of medically intractable epilepsy still remains a challenge for neurosurgeons across the world. A significant number of patients who has undergone resective brain surgery for epilepsy still continue to have seizures. The reason behind this therapy resistance still eludes us. Thus to develop a cure for the difficult to treat epilepsy, we need to comprehensively study epileptogenesis. Although various animal models are developed but none of them replicate the pathological conditions in humans. So the ideal way to understand epileptogenecity is to examine the tissue resected for the treatment of intractable epilepsy. Advanced imaging and electrical localization procedures are utilized to establish the epileptogenic zone in epilepsy patients. Further molecular and cytological studies are required for the microscopic analysis of brain samples collected from the epileptogenic focus. As alterations in inhibitory as well as excitatory synaptic transmission are key features of epilepsy, understanding the regulation of neurotransmission in the resected surgery zone is of immense importance. Here we summarize various modalities of in vitro slice analysis from the resected brain specimen to understand the changes in GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic transmission in epileptogenic zone. We also review evidence pertaining to the proposed role of nicotinic receptors in abnormal synaptic transmission which is one of the major causes of epileptiform activity. Elucidation of current concepts in regulation of synaptic transmission will help develop therapies for epilepsy cases that cannot me managed pharmacologically.

  11. Cellular and synaptic network defects in autism

    OpenAIRE

    Peça, João; Feng, Guoping

    2012-01-01

    Many candidate genes are now thought to confer susceptibility to autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Here we review four interrelated complexes, each composed of multiple families of genes that functionally coalesce on common cellular pathways. We illustrate a common thread in the organization of glutamatergic synapses and suggest a link between genes involved in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex, Fragile X syndrome, Angelman syndrome and several synaptic ASD candidate genes. When viewed in this conte...

  12. mGluR5 ablation in cortical glutamatergic neurons increases novelty-induced locomotion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chris P Jew

    Full Text Available The group I metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5 has been implicated in the pathology of various neurological disorders including schizophrenia, ADHD, and autism. mGluR5-dependent synaptic plasticity has been described at a variety of neural connections and its signaling has been implicated in several behaviors. These behaviors include locomotor reactivity to novel environment, sensorimotor gating, anxiety, and cognition. mGluR5 is expressed in glutamatergic neurons, inhibitory neurons, and glia in various brain regions. In this study, we show that deleting mGluR5 expression only in principal cortical neurons leads to defective cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1R dependent synaptic plasticity in the prefrontal cortex. These cortical glutamatergic mGluR5 knockout mice exhibit increased novelty-induced locomotion, and their locomotion can be further enhanced by treatment with the psychostimulant methylphenidate. Despite a modest reduction in repetitive behaviors, cortical glutamatergic mGluR5 knockout mice are normal in sensorimotor gating, anxiety, motor balance/learning and fear conditioning behaviors. These results show that mGluR5 signaling in cortical glutamatergic neurons is required for precisely modulating locomotor reactivity to a novel environment but not for sensorimotor gating, anxiety, motor coordination, several forms of learning or social interactions.

  13. Reduction of the cholesterol sensor SCAP in the brains of mice causes impaired synaptic transmission and altered cognitive function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryo Suzuki

    Full Text Available The sterol sensor SCAP is a key regulator of SREBP-2, the major transcription factor controlling cholesterol synthesis. Recently, we showed that there is a global down-regulation of cholesterol synthetic genes, as well as SREBP-2, in the brains of diabetic mice, leading to a reduction of cholesterol synthesis. We now show that in mouse models of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, this is, in part, the result of a decrease of SCAP. Homozygous disruption of the Scap gene in the brains of mice causes perinatal lethality associated with microcephaly and gliosis. Mice with haploinsufficiency of Scap in the brain show a 60% reduction of SCAP protein and ~30% reduction in brain cholesterol synthesis, similar to what is observed in diabetic mice. This results in impaired synaptic transmission, as measured by decreased paired pulse facilitation and long-term potentiation, and is associated with behavioral and cognitive changes. Thus, reduction of SCAP and the consequent suppression of cholesterol synthesis in the brain may play an important role in the increased rates of cognitive decline and Alzheimer disease observed in diabetic states.

  14. mGluR5 Ablation in Cortical Glutamatergic Neurons Increases Novelty-Induced Locomotion

    OpenAIRE

    Jew, Chris P.; Wu, Chia-Shan; Sun, Hao; Zhu, Jie; Huang, Jui-Yen; Yu, Dinghui; Justice, Nicholas J.; Lu, Hui-Chen

    2013-01-01

    The group I metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5) has been implicated in the pathology of various neurological disorders including schizophrenia, ADHD, and autism. mGluR5-dependent synaptic plasticity has been described at a variety of neural connections and its signaling has been implicated in several behaviors. These behaviors include locomotor reactivity to novel environment, sensorimotor gating, anxiety, and cognition. mGluR5 is expressed in glutamatergic neurons, inhibitory neurons,...

  15. Isoflurane inhibits synaptic vesicle exocytosis through reduced Ca2+ influx, not Ca2+-exocytosis coupling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumgart, Joel P; Zhou, Zhen-Yu; Hara, Masato; Cook, Daniel C; Hoppa, Michael B; Ryan, Timothy A; Hemmings, Hugh C

    2015-09-22

    Identifying presynaptic mechanisms of general anesthetics is critical to understanding their effects on synaptic transmission. We show that the volatile anesthetic isoflurane inhibits synaptic vesicle (SV) exocytosis at nerve terminals in dissociated rat hippocampal neurons through inhibition of presynaptic Ca(2+) influx without significantly altering the Ca(2+) sensitivity of SV exocytosis. A clinically relevant concentration of isoflurane (0.7 mM) inhibited changes in [Ca(2+)]i driven by single action potentials (APs) by 25 ± 3%, which in turn led to 62 ± 3% inhibition of single AP-triggered exocytosis at 4 mM extracellular Ca(2+) ([Ca(2+)]e). Lowering external Ca(2+) to match the isoflurane-induced reduction in Ca(2+) entry led to an equivalent reduction in exocytosis. These data thus indicate that anesthetic inhibition of neurotransmitter release from small SVs occurs primarily through reduced axon terminal Ca(2+) entry without significant direct effects on Ca(2+)-exocytosis coupling or on the SV fusion machinery. Isoflurane inhibition of exocytosis and Ca(2+) influx was greater in glutamatergic compared with GABAergic nerve terminals, consistent with selective inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission. Such alteration in the balance of excitatory to inhibitory transmission could mediate reduced neuronal interactions and network-selective effects observed in the anesthetized central nervous system. PMID:26351670

  16. Synaptic Cell Adhesion Molecules in Alzheimer's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leshchyns'ka, Iryna

    2016-01-01

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

  17. Familial hemiplegic migraine type-1 mutated cav2.1 calcium channels alter inhibitory and excitatory synaptic transmission in the lateral superior olive of mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inchauspe, Carlota González; Pilati, Nadia; Di Guilmi, Mariano N; Urbano, Francisco J; Ferrari, Michel D; van den Maagdenberg, Arn M J M; Forsythe, Ian D; Uchitel, Osvaldo D

    2015-01-01

    CaV2.1 Ca(2+) channels play a key role in triggering neurotransmitter release and mediating synaptic transmission. Familial hemiplegic migraine type-1 (FHM-1) is caused by missense mutations in the CACNA1A gene that encodes the α1A pore-forming subunit of CaV2.1 Ca(2+) channels. We used knock-in (KI) transgenic mice harbouring the pathogenic FHM-1 mutation R192Q to study inhibitory and excitatory neurotransmission in the principle neurons of the lateral superior olive (LSO) in the auditory brainstem. We tested if the R192Q FHM-1 mutation differentially affects excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission, disturbing the normal balance between excitation and inhibition in this nucleus. Whole cell patch-clamp was used to measure neurotransmitter elicited excitatory (EPSCs) and inhibitory (IPSCs) postsynaptic currents in wild-type (WT) and R192Q KI mice. Our results showed that the FHM-1 mutation in CaV2.1 channels has multiple effects. Evoked EPSC amplitudes were smaller whereas evoked and miniature IPSC amplitudes were larger in R192Q KI compared to WT mice. In addition, in R192Q KI mice, the release probability was enhanced compared to WT, at both inhibitory (0.53 ± 0.02 vs. 0.44 ± 0.01, P = 2.10(-5), Student's t-test) and excitatory synapses (0.60 ± 0.03 vs. 0.45 ± 0.02, P = 4 10(-6), Student's t-test). Vesicle pool size was diminished in R192Q KI mice compared to WT mice (68 ± 6 vs 91 ± 7, P = 0.008, inhibitory; 104 ± 13 vs 335 ± 30, P = 10(-6), excitatory, Student's t-test). R192Q KI mice present enhanced short-term plasticity. Repetitive stimulation of the afferent axons caused short-term depression (STD) of E/IPSCs that recovered significantly faster in R192Q KI mice compared to WT. This supports the hypothesis of a gain-of-function of the CaV2.1 channels in R192Q KI mice, which alters the balance of excitatory/inhibitory inputs and could also have implications in the altered cortical excitability responsible for FHM

  18. A truncating mutation in Alzheimer's disease inactivates neuroligin-1 synaptic function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tristán-Clavijo, Enriqueta; Camacho-Garcia, Rafael J; Robles-Lanuza, Estefanía; Ruiz, Agustín; van der Zee, Julie; Van Broeckhoven, Christine; Hernandez, Isabel; Martinez-Mir, Amalia; Scholl, Francisco G

    2015-12-01

    Neuroligins (NLs) are cell-adhesion proteins that regulate synapse formation and function. Neuroligin 1 (NL1) promotes the formation of glutamatergic synapses and mediates long-term potentiation in mouse models. Thus, altered NL1 function could mediate the synaptic and memory deficits associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here, we describe a frameshift mutation, c.875_876insTT, in the neuroligin 1 gene (NLGN1) in a patient with AD and familial history of AD. The insertion generates a premature stop codon in the extracellular domain of NL1 (p.Thr271fs). Expression of mutant NL1 shows accumulation of truncated NL1 proteins in the endoplasmic reticulum. In hippocampal neurons, the p.Thr271fs mutation abolishes the ability of NL1 to promote the formation of glutamatergic synapses. Our data support a role for inactivating mutations in NLGN1 in AD. Previous studies have reported rare mutations in X-linked NLGNL3 and NLGNL4 genes in patients with autism, which result in the inactivation of the mutant alleles. Therefore, together with a role in neurodevelopmental disorders, altered NL function could underlie the molecular mechanisms associated with brain diseases in the elderly. PMID:26440732

  19. Genomic convergence analysis of schizophrenia: mRNA sequencing reveals altered synaptic vesicular transport in post-mortem cerebellum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joann Mudge

    Full Text Available Schizophrenia (SCZ is a common, disabling mental illness with high heritability but complex, poorly understood genetic etiology. As the first phase of a genomic convergence analysis of SCZ, we generated 16.7 billion nucleotides of short read, shotgun sequences of cDNA from post-mortem cerebellar cortices of 14 patients and six, matched controls. A rigorous analysis pipeline was developed for analysis of digital gene expression studies. Sequences aligned to approximately 33,200 transcripts in each sample, with average coverage of 450 reads per gene. Following adjustments for confounding clinical, sample and experimental sources of variation, 215 genes differed significantly in expression between cases and controls. Golgi apparatus, vesicular transport, membrane association, Zinc binding and regulation of transcription were over-represented among differentially expressed genes. Twenty three genes with altered expression and involvement in presynaptic vesicular transport, Golgi function and GABAergic neurotransmission define a unifying molecular hypothesis for dysfunction in cerebellar cortex in SCZ.

  20. Elimination of redundant synaptic inputs in the absence of synaptic strengthening

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Hao; Liu, Hong; Zhang, Zhong-wei

    2011-01-01

    Synaptic refinement, a developmental process that consists of selective elimination and strengthening of immature synapses, is essential for the formation of precise neuronal circuits and proper brain function. At glutamatergic synapses in the brain, activity-dependent recruitment of AMPA receptors (AMPAR) is a key mechanism underlying the strengthening of immature synapses. Studies using receptor over-expression have shown that the recruitment of AMPARs is subunit specific. With the notable ...

  1. Excitatory synapses are stronger in the hippocampus of Rett syndrome mice due to altered synaptic trafficking of AMPA-type glutamate receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wei; Xu, Xin; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas

    2016-03-15

    Deficits in long-term potentiation (LTP) at central excitatory synapses are thought to contribute to cognitive impairments in neurodevelopmental disorders associated with intellectual disability and autism. Using the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (Mecp2) knockout (KO) mouse model of Rett syndrome, we show that naïve excitatory synapses onto hippocampal pyramidal neurons of symptomatic mice have all of the hallmarks of potentiated synapses. Stronger Mecp2 KO synapses failed to undergo LTP after either theta-burst afferent stimulation or pairing afferent stimulation with postsynaptic depolarization. On the other hand, basal synaptic strength and LTP were not affected in slices from younger presymptomatic Mecp2 KO mice. Furthermore, spine synapses in pyramidal neurons from symptomatic Mecp2 KO are larger and do not grow in size or incorporate GluA1 subunits after electrical or chemical LTP. Our data suggest that LTP is occluded in Mecp2 KO mice by already potentiated synapses. The higher surface levels of GluA1-containing receptors are consistent with altered expression levels of proteins involved in AMPA receptor trafficking, suggesting previously unidentified targets for therapeutic intervention for Rett syndrome and other MECP2-related disorders. PMID:26929363

  2. Blockade of presynaptic 4-aminopyridine-sensitive potassium channels increases initial neurotransmitter release probability, reinstates synaptic transmission altered by GABAB receptor activation in rat midbrain periaqueductal gray.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Guangying; Liu, Zhi-Liang; Zhang, Wei-Ning; Yang, Kun

    2016-01-01

    The activation of γ-aminobutyric acid receptor subtype B (GABAB) receptors in the midbrain ventrolateral periaqueductal gray (vlPAG) induces both postsynaptic and presynaptic inhibition. Whereas the postsynaptic inhibition is mediated by G protein-coupled inwardly rectifying K channels, the presynaptic inhibition of neurotransmitter release is primarily mediated by voltage-gated calcium channels. Using whole-cell recordings from acute rat PAG slices, we report here that the bath application of 4-aminopyridine, a voltage-gated K channel blocker, increases the initial GABA and glutamate release probability (P) and reinstates P depressed by presynaptic GABAB receptor activation at inhibitory and excitatory synapses, respectively. However, Ba, which blocks G protein-coupled inwardly rectifying K channels, does not produce similar effects. Our data suggest that the blockade of presynaptic 4-aminopyridine-sensitive K channels in vlPAG facilitates neurotransmitter release and reinstates synaptic transmission that has been altered by presynaptic GABAB receptor activation. Because vlPAG is involved in the descending pain control system, the present results may have potential therapeutic applications. PMID:26575285

  3. Prenatal minocycline treatment alters synaptic protein expression, and rescues reduced mother call rate in oxytocin receptor-knockout mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyazaki, Shinji; Hiraoka, Yuichi; Hidema, Shizu; Nishimori, Katsuhiko

    2016-04-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by impaired communication, difficulty in companionship, repetitive behaviors and restricted interests. Recent studies have shown amelioration of ASD symptoms by intranasal administration of oxytocin and demonstrated the association of polymorphisms in the oxytocin receptor (Oxtr) gene with ASD patients. Deficient pruning of synapses by microglial cells in the brain has been proposed as potential mechanism of ASD. Other researchers have shown specific activation of microglial cells in brain regions related to sociality in patients with ASD. Although the roles of Oxtr and microglia in ASD are in the spotlight, the relationship between them remains to be elucidated. In this study, we found abnormal activation of microglial cells and a reduction of postsynaptic density protein PSD95 expression in the Oxtr-deficient brain. Moreover, pharmacological inhibition of microglia during development can alter the expression of PSD95 and ameliorate abnormal mother-infant communication in Oxtr-deficient mice. Our results suggest that microglial abnormality is a potential mechanism of the development of Oxt/Oxtr mediated ASD-like phenotypes. PMID:26926566

  4. Deletion of Shank1 has minimal effects on the molecular composition and function of glutamatergic afferent postsynapses in the mouse inner ear

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Braude, Jeremy P.; Vijayakumar, Sarath; Baumgarner, Katherine; Laurine, Rebecca; Jones, Timothy A.; Jones, Sherri M.; Pyott, Sonja J.

    2015-01-01

    Shank proteins (1-3) are considered the master organizers of glutamatergic postsynaptic densities in the central nervous system, and the genetic deletion of either Shank1, 2, or 3 results in altered composition, form, and strength of glutamatergic postsynapses. To investigate the contribution of Sha

  5. Role of nucleus accumbens glutamatergic plasticity in drug addiction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quintero GC

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Gabriel C Quintero1–31Florida State University – Panama, Clayton, Panama; 2Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina, USA; 3Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Ancon, Republic of PanamaAbstract: Substance dependence is characterized by a group of symptoms, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition, Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR. These symptoms include tolerance, withdrawal, drug consumption for alleviating withdrawal, exaggerated consumption beyond original intention, failure to reduce drug consumption, expending a considerable amount of time obtaining or recovering from the substance’s effects, disregard of basic aspects of life (for example, family, and maintenance of drug consumption, despite facing adverse consequences. The nucleus accumbens (NAc is a brain structure located in the basal forebrain of vertebrates, and it has been the target of addictive drugs. Different neurotransmitter systems at the level of the NAc circuitry have been linked to the different problems of drug addiction, like compulsive use and relapse. The glutamate system has been linked mainly to relapse after drug-seeking extinction. The dopamine system has been linked mainly to compulsive drug use. The glutamate homeostasis hypothesis centers around the dynamics of synaptic and extrasynaptic levels of glutamate, and their impact on circuitry from the prefrontal cortex (PFC to the NAc. After repetitive drug use, deregulation of this homeostasis increases the release of glutamate from the PFC to the NAc during drug relapse. Glial cells also play a fundamental role in this hypothesis; glial cells shape the interactions between the PFC and the NAc by means of altering glutamate levels in synaptic and extrasynaptic spaces. On the other hand, cocaine self-administration and withdrawal increases the surface expression of subunit glutamate receptor 1 (GluA1 of alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4

  6. In vivo chronic intermittent ethanol exposure reverses the polarity of synaptic plasticity in the nucleus accumbens shell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeanes, Zachary M; Buske, Tavanna R; Morrisett, Richard A

    2011-01-01

    Glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) is implicated in response to sensitization to psychomotor-stimulating agents, yet ethanol effects here are undefined. We studied the acute in vitro and in vivo effects of ethanol in medium spiny neurons from the shell NAc subregion of slices of C57BL/6 mice by using whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazole-4-propionic acid (AMPA) excitatory postsynaptic current (EPSCs). Synaptic conditioning (low-frequency stimulation with concurrent postsynaptic depolarization) reliably depressed AMPA EPSCs by nearly 30%; this accumbal long-term depression (LTD) was blocked by a nonselective N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist (DL-2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid) and a selective NMDA receptor 2B antagonist [R-(R*,S*)-α-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-β-methyl-4-(phenylmethyl)-1-piperidine propanol]. Acute ethanol exposure inhibited the depression of AMPA EPSCs differentially with increasing concentrations, but this inhibitory action of ethanol was occluded by a D1-selective dopamine receptor agonist. Ethanol dependence was elicited in C57BL/6 mice by two separate 4-day bouts of chronic intermittent ethanol (CIE) vapor exposure. When assessed 24 h after a single bout of in vivo CIE vapor exposure, NAc LTD was absent, and instead NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic potentiation [long-term potentiation (LTP)] was reliably observed. It is noteworthy that both LTP and LTD were completely absent after an extended withdrawal (72 h) after a single 3-day CIE vapor bout. These observations demonstrate that 1) accumbal synaptic depression is mediated by NR2B receptors, 2) accumbal synaptic depression is highly sensitive to both acute and chronic ethanol exposure, and 3) alterations in this synaptic process may constitute a neural adaptation that contributes to the induction and/or expression of ethanol dependence. PMID:20947635

  7. Working Memory Impairment in Calcineurin Knock-out Mice Is Associated with Alterations in Synaptic Vesicle Cycling and Disruption of High-Frequency Synaptic and Network Activity in Prefrontal Cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Cottrell, Jeffrey R.; Levenson, Jonathan M.; Kim, Sung Hyun; Gibson, Helen E.; Richardson, Kristen A.; Sivula, Michael; Li, Bing; Ashford, Crystle J.; Heindl, Karen A.; Babcock, Ryan J.; Rose, David M.; Hempel, Chris M; Wiig, Kjesten A.; Laeng, Pascal; Levin, Margaret E.

    2013-01-01

    Working memory is an essential component of higher cognitive function, and its impairment is a core symptom of multiple CNS disorders, including schizophrenia. Neuronal mechanisms supporting working memory under normal conditions have been described and include persistent, high-frequency activity of prefrontal cortical neurons. However, little is known about the molecular and cellular basis of working memory dysfunction in the context of neuropsychiatric disorders. To elucidate synaptic and n...

  8. Tissue Plasminogen Activator Expression Is Restricted to Subsets of Excitatory Pyramidal Glutamatergic Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Louessard, Morgane; Lacroix, Alexandre; Martineau, Magalie; Mondielli, Gregoire; Montagne, Axel; Lesept, Flavie; Lambolez, Bertrand; Cauli, Bruno; Mothet, Jean-Pierre; Vivien, Denis; Maubert, Eric

    2016-09-01

    Although the extracellular serine protease tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) is involved in pathophysiological processes such as learning and memory, anxiety, epilepsy, stroke, and Alzheimer's disease, information about its regional, cellular, and subcellular distribution in vivo is lacking. In the present study, we observed, in healthy mice and rats, the presence of tPA in endothelial cells, oligodendrocytes, mastocytes, and ependymocytes, but not in pericytes, microglial cells, and astrocytes. Moreover, blockage of the axo-dendritic transport unmasked tPA expression in neurons of cortical and hippocampal areas. Interestingly, combined electrophysiological recordings, single-cell reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), and immunohistological analyses revealed that the presence of tPA is restricted to subsets of excitatory pyramidal glutamatergic neurons. We further evidenced that tPA is stored in synaptobrevin-2-positive glutamatergic synaptic vesicles. Based on all these data, we propose the existence of tPA-ergic neurons in the mature brain. PMID:26377106

  9. PRG-1 Regulates Synaptic Plasticity via Intracellular PP2A/β1-Integrin Signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xingfeng; Huai, Jisen; Endle, Heiko; Schlüter, Leslie; Fan, Wei; Li, Yunbo; Richers, Sebastian; Yurugi, Hajime; Rajalingam, Krishnaraj; Ji, Haichao; Cheng, Hong; Rister, Benjamin; Horta, Guilherme; Baumgart, Jan; Berger, Hendrik; Laube, Gregor; Schmitt, Ulrich; Schmeisser, Michael J; Boeckers, Tobias M; Tenzer, Stefan; Vlachos, Andreas; Deller, Thomas; Nitsch, Robert; Vogt, Johannes

    2016-08-01

    Alterations in dendritic spine numbers are linked to deficits in learning and memory. While we previously revealed that postsynaptic plasticity-related gene 1 (PRG-1) controls lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) signaling at glutamatergic synapses via presynaptic LPA receptors, we now show that PRG-1 also affects spine density and synaptic plasticity in a cell-autonomous fashion via protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A)/β1-integrin activation. PRG-1 deficiency reduces spine numbers and β1-integrin activation, alters long-term potentiation (LTP), and impairs spatial memory. The intracellular PRG-1 C terminus interacts in an LPA-dependent fashion with PP2A, thus modulating its phosphatase activity at the postsynaptic density. This results in recruitment of adhesome components src, paxillin, and talin to lipid rafts and ultimately in activation of β1-integrins. Consistent with these findings, activation of PP2A with FTY720 rescues defects in spine density and LTP of PRG-1-deficient animals. These results disclose a mechanism by which bioactive lipid signaling via PRG-1 could affect synaptic plasticity and memory formation. PMID:27453502

  10. Cholinergic-mediated IP3-receptor activation induces long-lasting synaptic enhancement in CA1 pyramidal neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Fernández de Sevilla, D.; Núñez Molina, Ángel; Borde, M.; Malinow, R.; Buño, Washinton

    2008-01-01

    Cholinergic-glutamatergic interactions influence forms of synaptic plasticity that are thought to mediate memory and learning. We tested in vitro the induction of long-lasting synaptic enhancement at Schaffer collaterals by acetylcholine (ACh) at the apical dendrite of CA1 pyramidal neurons and in vivo by stimulation of cholinergic afferents. In vitro ACh induced a Ca2+ wave and synaptic enhancement mediated by insertion of AMPA receptors in spines. Activation of muscarinic ACh receptors (mAC...

  11. Noradrenergic refinement of glutamatergic neuronal circuits in the lateral superior olivary nucleus before hearing onset.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirao, Kenzo; Eto, Kei; Nakahata, Yoshihisa; Ishibashi, Hitoshi; Nagai, Taku; Nabekura, Junichi

    2015-09-01

    Neuronal circuit plasticity during development is fundamental for precise network formation. Pioneering studies of the developmental visual cortex indicated that noradrenaline (NA) is crucial for ocular dominance plasticity during the critical period in the visual cortex. Recent research demonstrated tonotopic map formation by NA during the critical period in the auditory system, indicating that NA also contributes to synaptic plasticity in this system. The lateral superior olive (LSO) in the auditory system receives glutamatergic input from the ventral cochlear nucleus (VCN) and undergoes circuit remodeling during postnatal development. LSO is innervated by noradrenergic afferents and is therefore a suitable model to study the function of NA in refinement of neuronal circuits. Chemical lesions of the noradrenergic system and chronic inhibition of α2-adrenoceptors in vivo during postnatal development in mice disrupted functional elimination and strengthening of VCN-LSO afferents. This was potentially mediated by activation of presynaptic α2-adrenoceptors and inhibition of glutamate release because NA presynaptically suppressed excitatory postsynaptic current (EPSC) through α2-adrenoceptors during the first two postnatal weeks in an in vitro study. Furthermore, NA and α2-adrenoceptor agonist induced long-term suppression of EPSCs and decreased glutamate release. These results suggest that NA has a critical role in synaptic refinement of the VCN-LSO glutamatergic pathway through failure of synaptic transmission. Because of the ubiquitous distribution of NA afferents and the extensive expression of α2-adrenoceptors throughout the immature brain, this phenomenon might be widespread in the developing central nervous system. PMID:26203112

  12. Characterization of glutamatergic neurons in the rat atrial intrinsic cardiac ganglia that project to the cardiac ventricular wall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ting; Miller, Kenneth E

    2016-08-01

    The intrinsic cardiac nervous system modulates cardiac function by acting as an integration site for regulating autonomic efferent cardiac output. This intrinsic system is proposed to be composed of a short cardio-cardiac feedback control loop within the cardiac innervation hierarchy. For example, electrophysiological studies have postulated the presence of sensory neurons in intrinsic cardiac ganglia (ICG) for regional cardiac control. There is still a knowledge gap, however, about the anatomical location and neurochemical phenotype of sensory neurons inside ICG. In the present study, rat ICG neurons were characterized neurochemically with immunohistochemistry using glutamatergic markers: vesicular glutamate transporters 1 and 2 (VGLUT1; VGLUT2), and glutaminase (GLS), the enzyme essential for glutamate production. Glutamatergic neurons (VGLUT1/VGLUT2/GLS) in the ICG that have axons to the ventricles were identified by retrograde tracing of wheat germ agglutinin-horseradish peroxidase (WGA-HRP) injected in the ventricular wall. Co-labeling of VGLUT1, VGLUT2, and GLS with the vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT) was used to evaluate the relationship between post-ganglionic autonomic neurons and glutamatergic neurons. Sequential labeling of VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 in adjacent tissue sections was used to evaluate the co-localization of VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 in ICG neurons. Our studies yielded the following results: (1) ICG contain glutamatergic neurons with GLS for glutamate production and VGLUT1 and 2 for transport of glutamate into synaptic vesicles; (2) atrial ICG contain neurons that project to ventricle walls and these neurons are glutamatergic; (3) many glutamatergic ICG neurons also were cholinergic, expressing VAChT; (4) VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 co-localization occurred in ICG neurons with variation of their protein expression level. Investigation of both glutamatergic and cholinergic ICG neurons could help in better understanding the function of the intrinsic cardiac

  13. Glutamatergic Model Psychoses: Prediction Error, Learning, and Inference

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corlett, Philip R; Honey, Garry D; Krystal, John H; Fletcher, Paul C

    2011-01-01

    Modulating glutamatergic neurotransmission induces alterations in conscious experience that mimic the symptoms of early psychotic illness. We review studies that use intravenous administration of ketamine, focusing on interindividual variability in the profundity of the ketamine experience. We will consider this individual variability within a hypothetical model of brain and cognitive function centered upon learning and inference. Within this model, the brains, neural systems, and even single neurons specify expectations about their inputs and responding to violations of those expectations with new learning that renders future inputs more predictable. We argue that ketamine temporarily deranges this ability by perturbing both the ways in which prior expectations are specified and the ways in which expectancy violations are signaled. We suggest that the former effect is predominantly mediated by NMDA blockade and the latter by augmented and inappropriate feedforward glutamatergic signaling. We suggest that the observed interindividual variability emerges from individual differences in neural circuits that normally underpin the learning and inference processes described. The exact source for that variability is uncertain, although it is likely to arise not only from genetic variation but also from subjects' previous experiences and prior learning. Furthermore, we argue that chronic, unlike acute, NMDA blockade alters the specification of expectancies more profoundly and permanently. Scrutinizing individual differences in the effects of acute and chronic ketamine administration in the context of the Bayesian brain model may generate new insights about the symptoms of psychosis; their underlying cognitive processes and neurocircuitry. PMID:20861831

  14. NR2A/B-containing NMDA receptors mediate cocaine-induced synaptic plasticity in the VTA and cocaine psychomotor sensitization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumann, Johanna; Matzner, Henry; Michaeli, Avner; Yaka, Rami

    2009-09-18

    Cocaine-induced modifications of glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the mesolimbic system play a key role in adaptations that promote addictive behaviors. In particular, the activation of ionotropic glutamate N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) is critical for both cocaine-induced synaptic plasticity induced by a single cocaine injection and for the initiation of cocaine psychomotor sensitization. In this study, we set to determine whether the NR2 subunits of the NMDAR play a specific role in triggering cocaine-induced alterations in synaptic plasticity and the development of psychomotor sensitization. We found that inhibition of NR2A-containing NMDARs by NVP-AAM077, or NR2B-containing receptors by ifenprodil, blocked cocaine-induced increase in the AMPAR/NMDAR currents ratio, a measure of long-term potentiation (LTP) in vivo, in VTA neurons 24h following a single cocaine injection. Furthermore, inhibition of the NR2A subunit during the development of psychomotor sensitization attenuated the enhanced locomotor activity following repeated cocaine injections. Together, these results suggest that NR2-containing NMDA receptors play an important role in the machinery that triggers synaptic and behavioral adaptations to drugs of abuse such as cocaine. PMID:19524640

  15. Chronic Intermittent Ethanol Exposure Enhances the Excitability and Synaptic Plasticity of Lateral Orbitofrontal Cortex Neurons and Induces a Tolerance to the Acute Inhibitory Actions of Ethanol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nimitvilai, Sudarat; Lopez, Marcelo F; Mulholland, Patrick J; Woodward, John J

    2016-03-01

    Alcoholism is associated with changes in brain reward and control systems, including the prefrontal cortex. In prefrontal areas, the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) has been suggested to have an important role in the development of alcohol-abuse disorders and studies from this laboratory demonstrate that OFC-mediated behaviors are impaired in alcohol-dependent animals. However, it is not known whether chronic alcohol (ethanol) exposure alters the fundamental properties of OFC neurons. In this study, mice were exposed to repeated cycles of chronic intermittent ethanol (CIE) exposure to induce dependence and whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology was used to examine the effects of CIE treatment on lateral OFC (lOFC) neuron excitability, synaptic transmission, and plasticity. Repeated cycles of CIE exposure and withdrawal enhanced current-evoked action potential (AP) spiking and this was accompanied by a reduction in the after-hyperpolarization and a decrease in the functional activity of SK channels. CIE mice also showed an increase in the AMPA/NMDA ratio, and this was associated with an increase in GluA1/GluA2 AMPA receptor expression and a decrease in GluN2B NMDA receptor subunits. Following CIE treatment, lOFC neurons displayed a persistent long-term potentiation of glutamatergic synaptic transmission following a spike-timing-dependent protocol. Lastly, CIE treatment diminished the inhibitory effect of acute ethanol on AP spiking of lOFC neurons and reduced expression of the GlyT1 transporter. Taken together, these results suggest that chronic exposure to ethanol leads to enhanced intrinsic excitability and glutamatergic synaptic signaling of lOFC neurons. These alterations may contribute to the impairment of OFC-dependent behaviors in alcohol-dependent individuals. PMID:26286839

  16. Removal of S6K1 and S6K2 Leads to Divergent Alterations in Learning, Memory, and Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antion, Marcia D.; Merhav, Maayan; Hoeffer, Charles A.; Reis, Gerald; Kozma, Sara C.; Thomas, George; Schuman Erin M.; Rosenblum, Kobi; Klann, Eric

    2008-01-01

    Protein synthesis is required for the expression of enduring memories and long-lasting synaptic plasticity. During cellular proliferation and growth, S6 kinases (S6Ks) are activated and coordinate the synthesis of de novo proteins. We hypothesized that protein synthesis mediated by S6Ks is critical for the manifestation of learning, memory, and…

  17. Glucocorticoids act on glutamatergic pathways to affect memory processes

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    Glucocorticoids can acutely affect memory processes, with both facilitating and impairing effects having been described. Recent work has revealed that glucocorticoids may affect learning and memory processes by interacting with glutamatergic mechanisms. In this opinion article I describe different glutamatergic pathways that glucocorticoids can affect to modulate memory processes. Furthermore, glucocorticoid-glutamatergic interactions during information processing are proposed as a potential ...

  18. Microtubule stabilizer ameliorates synaptic function and behavior in a mouse model for schizophrenia.

    OpenAIRE

    Andrieux, Annie; Salin, Paul; Schweitzer, Annie; Bégou, Mélina; Pachoud, Bastien; Brun, Philippe; Gory-Fauré, Sylvie; Kujala, Pekka; Suaud-Chagny, Marie-Françoise; Höfle, Gerhard; Job, Didier

    2006-01-01

    International audience BACKGROUND: Recent data suggest that cytoskeletal defects may play a role in schizophrenia. We previously imitated features of schizophrenia in an animal model by disrupting gene coding for a microtubule-associated protein called STOP. STOP-null mice display synaptic defects in glutamatergic neurons, hyper-dopaminergy, and severe behavioral disorders. Synaptic and behavioral deficits are amended by neuroleptic treatment in STOP-null mice, providing an attractive mode...

  19. EDITORIAL: Synaptic electronics Synaptic electronics

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-09-01

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

  20. EDITORIAL: Synaptic electronics Synaptic electronics

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-09-01

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

  1. Loss of estrogen-related receptor alpha disrupts ventral-striatal synaptic function in female mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Jesús-Cortés, Héctor; Lu, Yuan; Anderson, Rachel M; Khan, Michael Z; Nath, Varun; McDaniel, Latisha; Lutter, Michael; Radley, Jason J; Pieper, Andrew A; Cui, Huxing

    2016-08-01

    Eating disorders (EDs), including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge-ED, are mental illnesses characterized by high morbidity and mortality. While several studies have identified neural deficits in patients with EDs, the cellular and molecular basis of the underlying dysfunction has remained poorly understood. We previously identified a rare missense mutation in the transcription factor estrogen-related receptor alpha (ESRRA) associated with development of EDs. Because ventral-striatal signaling is related to the reward and motivation circuitry thought to underlie EDs, we performed functional and structural analysis of ventral-striatal synapses in Esrra-null mice. Esrra-null female, but not male, mice exhibit altered miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents on medium spiny neurons (MSNs) in the ventral striatum, including increased frequency, increased amplitude, and decreased paired pulse ratio. These electrophysiological measures are associated with structural and molecular changes in synapses of MSNs in the ventral striatum, including fewer pre-synaptic glutamatergic vesicles and enhanced GluR1 function. Neuronal Esrra is thus required for maintaining normal synaptic function in the ventral striatum, which may offer mechanistic insights into the behavioral deficits observed in Esrra-null mice. PMID:27155145

  2. Glutamatergic Monopolar Interneurons Provide a Novel Pathway of Excitation in the Mouse Retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Della Santina, Luca; Kuo, Sidney P; Yoshimatsu, Takeshi; Okawa, Haruhisa; Suzuki, Sachihiro C; Hoon, Mrinalini; Tsuboyama, Kotaro; Rieke, Fred; Wong, Rachel O L

    2016-08-01

    Excitatory and inhibitory neurons in the CNS are distinguished by several features, including morphology, transmitter content, and synapse architecture [1]. Such distinctions are exemplified in the vertebrate retina. Retinal bipolar cells are polarized glutamatergic neurons receiving direct photoreceptor input, whereas amacrine cells are usually monopolar inhibitory interneurons with synapses almost exclusively in the inner retina [2]. Bipolar but not amacrine cell synapses have presynaptic ribbon-like structures at their transmitter release sites. We identified a monopolar interneuron in the mouse retina that resembles amacrine cells morphologically but is glutamatergic and, unexpectedly, makes ribbon synapses. These glutamatergic monopolar interneurons (GluMIs) do not receive direct photoreceptor input, and their light responses are strongly shaped by both ON and OFF pathway-derived inhibitory input. GluMIs contact and make almost as many synapses as type 2 OFF bipolar cells onto OFF-sustained A-type (AOFF-S) retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). However, GluMIs and type 2 OFF bipolar cells possess functionally distinct light-driven responses and may therefore mediate separate components of the excitatory synaptic input to AOFF-S RGCs. The identification of GluMIs thus unveils a novel cellular component of excitatory circuits in the vertebrate retina, underscoring the complexity in defining cell types even in this well-characterized region of the CNS. PMID:27426514

  3. Plasticity in Glutamatergic NTS Neurotransmission

    OpenAIRE

    Kline, David D.

    2008-01-01

    Changes in the physiological state of an animal or human can result in alterations in the cardiovascular and respiratory system in order to maintain homeostasis. Accordingly, the cardiovascular and respiratory systems are not static but readily adapt under a variety of circumstances. The same can be said for the brainstem circuits that control these systems. The nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) is the central integration site of baroreceptor and chemoreceptor sensory afferent fibers. This cen...

  4. Alterations in kainate receptor and TRPM1 localization in bipolar cells after retinal photoreceptor degeneration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacqueline eGayet-Primo

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Photoreceptor degeneration differentially impacts glutamatergic signaling in downstream On and Off bipolar cells. In rodent models, photoreceptor degeneration leads to loss of glutamatergic signaling in On bipolar cells, whereas Off bipolar cells appear to retain glutamate sensitivity, even after extensive photoreceptor loss. The localization and identity of the receptors that mediate these residual glutamate responses in Off bipolar cells have not been determined. Recent studies show that macaque and mouse Off bipolar cells receive glutamatergic input primarily through kainate-type glutamate receptors. Here, we studied the impact of photoreceptor degeneration on glutamate receptor associated proteins in Off and On bipolar cells. We show that the kainate receptor subunit, GluK1, persists in remodeled Off bipolar cell dendrites of the rd10 mouse retina. However, the pattern of expression is altered and the intensity of staining is reduced compared to wild-type retina. The kainate receptor auxiliary subunit, Neto1, also remains in Off bipolar cell dendrites after complete photoreceptor degeneration. Similar preservation of kainate receptor subunits was evident in human retina in which photoreceptors had degenerated due to serous retinal detachment. In contrast, photoreceptor degeneration leads to loss of synaptic expression of TRPM1 in mouse and human On bipolar cells, but strong somatic expression remains. These findings demonstrate that Off bipolar cells retain dendritic glutamate receptors during retinal degeneration and could thus serve as a conduit for signal transmission from transplanted or optogenetically-restored photoreceptors.

  5. Candidate glutamatergic neurons in the visual system of Drosophila.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shamprasad Varija Raghu

    Full Text Available The visual system of Drosophila contains approximately 60,000 neurons that are organized in parallel, retinotopically arranged columns. A large number of these neurons have been characterized in great anatomical detail. However, studies providing direct evidence for synaptic signaling and the neurotransmitter used by individual neurons are relatively sparse. Here we present a first layout of neurons in the Drosophila visual system that likely release glutamate as their major neurotransmitter. We identified 33 different types of neurons of the lamina, medulla, lobula and lobula plate. Based on the previous Golgi-staining analysis, the identified neurons are further classified into 16 major subgroups representing lamina monopolar (L, transmedullary (Tm, transmedullary Y (TmY, Y, medulla intrinsic (Mi, Mt, Pm, Dm, Mi Am, bushy T (T, translobula plate (Tlp, lobula intrinsic (Lcn, Lt, Li, lobula plate tangential (LPTCs and lobula plate intrinsic (LPi cell types. In addition, we found 11 cell types that were not described by the previous Golgi analysis. This classification of candidate glutamatergic neurons fosters the future neurogenetic dissection of information processing in circuits of the fly visual system.

  6. Microtubule-associated protein 1B (MAP1B)-deficient neurons show structural presynaptic deficiencies in vitro and altered presynaptic physiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodaleo, Felipe J; Montenegro-Venegas, Carolina; Henríquez, Daniel R; Court, Felipe A; Gonzalez-Billault, Christian

    2016-01-01

    Microtubule-associated protein 1B (MAP1B) is expressed predominantly during the early stages of development of the nervous system, where it regulates processes such as axonal guidance and elongation. Nevertheless, MAP1B expression in the brain persists in adult stages, where it participates in the regulation of the structure and physiology of dendritic spines in glutamatergic synapses. Moreover, MAP1B expression is also found in presynaptic synaptosomal preparations. In this work, we describe a presynaptic phenotype in mature neurons derived from MAP1B knockout (MAP1B KO) mice. Mature neurons express MAP1B, and its deficiency does not alter the expression levels of a subgroup of other synaptic proteins. MAP1B KO neurons display a decrease in the density of presynaptic and postsynaptic terminals, which involves a reduction in the density of synaptic contacts, and an increased proportion of orphan presynaptic terminals. Accordingly, MAP1B KO neurons present altered synaptic vesicle fusion events, as shown by FM4-64 release assay, and a decrease in the density of both synaptic vesicles and dense core vesicles at presynaptic terminals. Finally, an increased proportion of excitatory immature symmetrical synaptic contacts in MAP1B KO neurons was detected. Altogether these results suggest a novel role for MAP1B in presynaptic structure and physiology regulation in vitro. PMID:27425640

  7. Impairment of bidirectional synaptic plasticity in the striatum of a mouse model of DYT1 dystonia: role of endogenous acetylcholine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martella, Giuseppina; Tassone, Annalisa; Sciamanna, Giuseppe; Platania, Paola; Cuomo, Dario; Viscomi, Maria Teresa; Bonsi, Paola; Cacci, Emanuele; Biagioni, Stefano; Usiello, Alessandro; Bernardi, Giorgio; Sharma, Nutan

    2009-01-01

    DYT1 dystonia is a severe form of inherited dystonia, characterized by involuntary twisting movements and abnormal postures. It is linked to a deletion in the dyt1 gene, resulting in a mutated form of the protein torsinA. The penetrance for dystonia is incomplete, but both clinically affected and non-manifesting carriers of the DYT1 mutation exhibit impaired motor learning and evidence of altered motor plasticity. Here, we characterized striatal glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in transgenic mice expressing either the normal human torsinA or its mutant form, in comparison to non-transgenic (NT) control mice. Medium spiny neurons recorded from both NT and normal human torsinA mice exhibited normal long-term depression (LTD), whereas in mutant human torsinA littermates LTD could not be elicited. In addition, although long-term potentiation (LTP) could be induced in all the mice, it was greater in magnitude in mutant human torsinA mice. Low-frequency stimulation (LFS) can revert potentiated synapses to resting levels, a phenomenon termed synaptic depotentiation. LFS induced synaptic depotentiation (SD) both in NT and normal human torsinA mice, but not in mutant human torsinA mice. Since anti-cholinergic drugs are an effective medical therapeutic option for the treatment of human dystonia, we reasoned that an excess in endogenous acetylcholine could underlie the synaptic plasticity impairment. Indeed, both LTD and SD were rescued in mutant human torsinA mice either by lowering endogenous acetylcholine levels or by antagonizing muscarinic M1 receptors. The presence of an enhanced acetylcholine tone was confirmed by the observation that acetylcholinesterase activity was significantly increased in the striatum of mutant human torsinA mice, as compared with both normal human torsinA and NT littermates. Moreover, we found similar alterations of synaptic plasticity in muscarinic M2/M4 receptor knockout mice, in which an increased striatal acetylcholine level has been

  8. Syntaxin 1B, but not syntaxin 1A, is necessary for the regulation of synaptic vesicle exocytosis and of the readily releasable pool at central synapses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatsuya Mishima

    Full Text Available Two syntaxin 1 (STX1 isoforms, HPC-1/STX1A and STX1B, are coexpressed in neurons and function as neuronal target membrane (t-SNAREs. However, little is known about their functional differences in synaptic transmission. STX1A null mutant mice develop normally and do not show abnormalities in fast synaptic transmission, but monoaminergic transmissions are impaired. In the present study, we found that STX1B null mutant mice died within 2 weeks of birth. To examine functional differences between STX1A and 1B, we analyzed the presynaptic properties of glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses in STX1B null mutant and STX1A/1B double null mutant mice. We found that the frequency of spontaneous quantal release was lower and the paired-pulse ratio of evoked postsynaptic currents was significantly greater in glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses of STX1B null neurons. Deletion of STX1B also accelerated synaptic vesicle turnover in glutamatergic synapses and decreased the size of the readily releasable pool in glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses. Moreover, STX1A/1B double null neurons showed reduced and asynchronous evoked synaptic vesicle release in glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses. Our results suggest that although STX1A and 1B share a basic function as neuronal t-SNAREs, STX1B but not STX1A is necessary for the regulation of spontaneous and evoked synaptic vesicle exocytosis in fast transmission.

  9. Cocaine-Induced Behavioral Sensitization Is Associated With Changes in the Expression of Endocannabinoid and Glutamatergic Signaling Systems in the Mouse Prefrontal Cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Blanco Calvo, Eduardo; Pavón, Francisco Javier; Palomino, Ana; Luque-Rojas, María Jesús; Serrano, Antonia; Rivera, Patricia; Bilbao, Ainhoa; Alen, Francisco; Vida, Margarita; Suárez, Juan; Rodríguez de Fonseca, Fernando

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Background: Endocannabinoids modulate the glutamatergic excitatory transmission by acting as retrograde messengers. A growing body of studies has reported that both signaling systems in the mesocorticolimbic neural circuitry are involved in the neurobiological mechanisms underlying drug addiction. Methods: We investigated whether the expression of both endocannabinoid and glutamatergic systems in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) were altered by an acute and/or repeated cocaine administrat...

  10. Synaptic plasticity and phosphorylation

    OpenAIRE

    Lee, Hey-Kyoung

    2006-01-01

    A number of neuronal functions, including synaptic plasticity, depend on proper regulation of synaptic proteins, many of which can be rapidly regulated by phosphorylation. Neuronal activity controls the function of these synaptic proteins by exquisitely regulating the balance of various protein kinase and protein phosphatase activity. Recent understanding of synaptic plasticity mechanisms underscores important roles that these synaptic phosphoproteins play in regulating both pre- and post-syn...

  11. Synaptic determinants of Rett syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena M B Boggio

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available There is mounting evidence showing that the structural and molecular organization of synaptic connections are affected both in human patients and in animal models of neurological and psychiatric diseases. As a consequence of these experimental observations, it has been introduced the concept of synapsopathies, a notion describing brain disorders of synaptic function and plasticity. A close correlation between neurological diseases and synaptic abnormalities is especially relevant for those syndromes including also mental retardation in their symptomatology, such as Rett Syndrome (RS. RS (MIM312750 is an X-linked dominant neurological disorder that is caused, in the majority of cases by mutations in methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2. This review will focus on the current knowledge of the synaptic alterations produced by mutations of the gene MeCP2 in mouse models of RS and will highlight prospects experimental therapies currently in use. Different experimental approaches have revealed that RS could be the consequence of an impairment in the homeostasis of synaptic transmission in specific brain regions. Indeed, several forms of experience-induced neuronal plasticity are impaired in the absence of MeCP2. Based on the results presented in this review, it is reasonable to propose that understanding how the brain is affected by diseases such as RS is at reach. This effort will bring us closer to identify the neurobiological bases of human cognition.

  12. Plasticity of Hippocampal Excitatory-Inhibitory Balance: Missing the Synaptic Control in the Epileptic Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonansco, Christian; Fuenzalida, Marco

    2016-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity is the capacity generated by experience to modify the neural function and, thereby, adapt our behaviour. Long-term plasticity of glutamatergic and GABAergic transmission occurs in a concerted manner, finely adjusting the excitatory-inhibitory (E/I) balance. Imbalances of E/I function are related to several neurological diseases including epilepsy. Several evidences have demonstrated that astrocytes are able to control the synaptic plasticity, with astrocytes being active partners in synaptic physiology and E/I balance. Here, we revise molecular evidences showing the epileptic stage as an abnormal form of long-term brain plasticity and propose the possible participation of astrocytes to the abnormal increase of glutamatergic and decrease of GABAergic neurotransmission in epileptic networks. PMID:27006834

  13. Plasticity of Hippocampal Excitatory-Inhibitory Balance: Missing the Synaptic Control in the Epileptic Brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Bonansco

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Synaptic plasticity is the capacity generated by experience to modify the neural function and, thereby, adapt our behaviour. Long-term plasticity of glutamatergic and GABAergic transmission occurs in a concerted manner, finely adjusting the excitatory-inhibitory (E/I balance. Imbalances of E/I function are related to several neurological diseases including epilepsy. Several evidences have demonstrated that astrocytes are able to control the synaptic plasticity, with astrocytes being active partners in synaptic physiology and E/I balance. Here, we revise molecular evidences showing the epileptic stage as an abnormal form of long-term brain plasticity and propose the possible participation of astrocytes to the abnormal increase of glutamatergic and decrease of GABAergic neurotransmission in epileptic networks.

  14. MAGI-1 modulates AMPA receptor synaptic localization and behavioral plasticity in response to prior experience.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lesley Emtage

    Full Text Available It is well established that the efficacy of synaptic connections can be rapidly modified by neural activity, yet how the environment and prior experience modulate such synaptic and behavioral plasticity is only beginning to be understood. Here we show in C. elegans that the broadly conserved scaffolding molecule MAGI-1 is required for the plasticity observed in a glutamatergic circuit. This mechanosensory circuit mediates reversals in locomotion in response to touch stimulation, and the AMPA-type receptor (AMPAR subunits GLR-1 and GLR-2, which are required for reversal behavior, are localized to ventral cord synapses in this circuit. We find that animals modulate GLR-1 and GLR-2 localization in response to prior mechanosensory stimulation; a specific isoform of MAGI-1 (MAGI-1L is critical for this modulation. We show that MAGI-1L interacts with AMPARs through the intracellular domain of the GLR-2 subunit, which is required for the modulation of AMPAR synaptic localization by mechanical stimulation. In addition, mutations that prevent the ubiquitination of GLR-1 prevent the decrease in AMPAR localization observed in previously stimulated magi-1 mutants. Finally, we find that previously-stimulated animals later habituate to subsequent mechanostimulation more rapidly compared to animals initially reared without mechanical stimulation; MAGI-1L, GLR-1, and GLR-2 are required for this change in habituation kinetics. Our findings demonstrate that prior experience can cause long-term alterations in both behavioral plasticity and AMPAR localization at synapses in an intact animal, and indicate a new, direct role for MAGI/S-SCAM proteins in modulating AMPAR localization and function in the wake of variable sensory experience.

  15. Effects of Anti-NMDA Antibodies on Functional Recovery and Synaptic Rearrangement Following Hemicerebellectomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laricchiuta, Daniela; Cavallucci, Virve; Cutuli, Debora; De Bartolo, Paola; Caporali, Paola; Foti, Francesca; Finke, Carsten; D'Amelio, Marcello; Manto, Mario; Petrosini, Laura

    2016-06-01

    The compensation that follows cerebellar lesions is based on synaptic modifications in many cortical and subcortical regions, although its cellular mechanisms are still unclear. Changes in glutamatergic receptor expression may represent the synaptic basis of the compensated state. We analyzed in rats the involvement of glutamatergic system of the cerebello-frontal network in the compensation following a right hemicerebellectomy. We evaluated motor performances, spatial competencies and molecular correlates in compensated hemicerebellectomized rats which in the frontal cortex contralateral to the hemicerebellectomy side received injections of anti-NMDA antibodies from patients affected by anti-NMDA encephalitis. In the compensated hemicerebellectomized rats, the frontal injections of anti-NMDA antibodies elicited a marked decompensation state characterized by slight worsening of the motor symptoms as well as severe impairment of spatial mnesic and procedural performances. Conversely, in the sham-operated group the frontal injections of anti-NMDA antibodies elicited slight motor and spatial impairment. The molecular analyses indicated that cerebellar compensatory processes were related to a relevant rearrangement of glutamatergic synapses (NMDA and AMPA receptors and other glutamatergic components) along the entire cortico-cerebellar network. The long-term maintenance of the rearranged glutamatergic activity plays a crucial role in the maintenance of recovered function. PMID:27027521

  16. Synaptic signaling and aberrant RNA splicing in autism spectrum disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan M Smith

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Interactions between presynaptic and postsynaptic cellular adhesion molecules drive synapse maturation during development. These trans-synaptic interactions are regulated by alternative splicing of cellular adhesion molecule RNAs, which ultimately determines neurotransmitter phenotype. The diverse assortment of RNAs produced by alternative splicing generates countless protein isoforms necessary for guiding specialized cell-to-cell connectivity. Failure to generate the appropriate synaptic adhesion proteins is associated with disrupted glutamatergic and gamma-aminobutyric acid signaling, resulting in loss of activity-dependent neuronal plasticity, and risk for developmental disorders, including autism. While the majority of genetic mutations currently linked to autism are rare variants that change the protein coding sequence of synaptic candidate genes, regulatory polymorphisms affecting constitutive and alternative splicing have emerged as risk factors in numerous other diseases, accounting for an estimated 40-60% of general disease risk. Here, we review the relationship between aberrant RNA splicing of synapse-related genes and autism spectrum disorders.

  17. Imaging the glutamatergic system in vivo - relevance to schizophrenia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schizophrenia is a devastating psychiatric illness. Its pathophysiology is not fully clarified. Animal data, in vitro and indirect in vivo imaging support glutamatergic N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor hypofunction in the disorder. A lack of suitable ligands has obstructed direct evaluation of the NMDA receptor hypofunction hypothesis of schizophrenia. Many research groups are working towards developing appropriate single-photon emission tomography and positron emission tomography ligands for the NMDA receptor. This paper briefly presents evidence for links between glutamatergic system dysfunction and schizophrenia. It reviews the radioligands to evaluate glutamatergic receptors in vivo and discusses issues in developing novel ligands for the glutamatergic system. (orig.)

  18. Imaging the glutamatergic system in vivo - relevance to schizophrenia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bressan, R.A.; Pilowsky, L.S. [Inst. of Psychiatry, London (United Kingdom); Inst. of Nuclear Medicine, University College of London Medical School (United Kingdom)

    2000-11-01

    Schizophrenia is a devastating psychiatric illness. Its pathophysiology is not fully clarified. Animal data, in vitro and indirect in vivo imaging support glutamatergic N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor hypofunction in the disorder. A lack of suitable ligands has obstructed direct evaluation of the NMDA receptor hypofunction hypothesis of schizophrenia. Many research groups are working towards developing appropriate single-photon emission tomography and positron emission tomography ligands for the NMDA receptor. This paper briefly presents evidence for links between glutamatergic system dysfunction and schizophrenia. It reviews the radioligands to evaluate glutamatergic receptors in vivo and discusses issues in developing novel ligands for the glutamatergic system. (orig.)

  19. Molecular mechanisms determining conserved properties of short-term synaptic depression revealed in NSF and SNAP-25 conditional mutants

    OpenAIRE

    Kawasaki, Fumiko; Ordway, Richard W.

    2009-01-01

    Current models of synaptic vesicle trafficking implicate a core complex of proteins comprised of N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor (NSF), soluble NSF attachment proteins (SNAPs), and SNAREs in synaptic vesicle fusion and neurotransmitter release. Despite this progress, major challenges remain in establishing the in vivo functions of these proteins and their roles in determining the physiological properties of synapses. The present study employs glutamatergic adult neuromuscular synapses of Dr...

  20. Glutamatergic Metabolites, Volume and Cortical Thickness in Antipsychotic-Naive Patients with First-Episode Psychosis: Implications for Excitotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plitman, Eric; Patel, Raihaan; Chung, Jun Ku; Pipitone, Jon; Chavez, Sofia; Reyes-Madrigal, Francisco; Gómez-Cruz, Gladys; León-Ortiz, Pablo; Chakravarty, M Mallar; de la Fuente-Sandoval, Camilo; Graff-Guerrero, Ariel

    2016-09-01

    Neuroimaging studies investigating patients with schizophrenia often report appreciable volumetric reductions and cortical thinning, yet the cause of these deficits is unknown. The association between subcortical and cortical structural alterations, and glutamatergic neurometabolites is of particular interest due to glutamate's capacity for neurotoxicity; elevated levels may be related to neuroanatomical compromise through an excitotoxic process. To this end, we explored the relationships between glutamatergic neurometabolites and structural measures in antipsychotic-naive patients experiencing their first non-affective episode of psychosis (FEP). Sixty antipsychotic-naive patients with FEP and 60 age- and sex-matched healthy controls underwent a magnetic resonance imaging session, which included a T1-weighted volumetric image and proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy in the precommissural dorsal caudate. Group differences in precommissural caudate volume (PCV) and cortical thickness (CT), and the relationships between glutamatergic neurometabolites (ie, glutamate+glutamine (Glx) and glutamate) and these structural measures, were examined. PCV was decreased in the FEP group (pschizophrenia. PMID:27272768

  1. Neuron-glia interactions in glutamatergic neurotransmission

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, A; Sickmann, H M; Bak, Lasse Kristoffer;

    2011-01-01

    theses processes also has not been fully elucidated. Cultured astrocytes and neurons were utilized to monitor these processes related to glutamatergic neurotransmission. Inhibitors of glycolysis and TCA cycle in combination with pathway-selective substrates were used to study glutamate uptake and release...... in providing energy for glutamate uptake both in astrocytes and in neurons. The neuronal vesicular glutamate release was less dependent on glycolytic ATP. Dependence of glutamate uptake on glycolytic ATP may be at least partially explained by a close association in the membrane of GAPDH and PGK and...

  2. Valine but not leucine or isoleucine supports neurotransmitter glutamate synthesis during synaptic activity in cultured cerebellar neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bak, Lasse Kristoffer; Johansen, Maja L.; Schousboe, Arne;

    2012-01-01

    group nitrogen donors for synthesis of vesicular neurotransmitter glutamate was investigated in cultured mouse cerebellar (primarily glutamatergic) neurons. The cultures were superfused in the presence of (15) N-labeled BCAAs, and synaptic activity was induced by pulses of N-methyl-D-aspartate (300 µ...

  3. Genetic analysis of glutamatergic function in Drosophila

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Neurotransmitters are essential for communication between neurons and hence are vital in the overall integrative functioning of the nervous system. Previous work on acetylcholine metabolism in the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has also raised the possibility that transmitter metabolism may play a prominent role in either the achievement or maintenance of the normal structure of the central nervous system in this species. Unfortunately, acetylcholine is rather poorly characterized as a neurotransmitter in Drosophila; consequently, we have begun an analysis of the role of glutamate (probably the best characterized transmitter in this organism) in the formation and/or maintenance of nervous system structure. We present here the results of a series of preliminary analyses. To suggest where glutamatergic function may be localized, an examination of the spatial distribution of high affinity [3H]-glutamate binding sites are presented. We present the results of an analysis of the spatial and temporal distribution of enzymatic activities thought to be important in the regulation of transmitter-glutamate pools (i.e., glutamate oxaloacetic transaminase, glutaminase, and glutamate dehydrogenase). To begin to examine whether mutations in any of these functions are capable of affecting glutamatergic activity, we present the results of an initial genetic analysis of one enzymatic function, glutamate oxaloacetic transaminase (GOT), chosen because of its differential distribution within the adult central nervous system and musculature

  4. Functional recovery after cervical spinal cord injury: Role of neurotrophin and glutamatergic signaling in phrenic motoneurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, Luther C; Gransee, Heather M; Sieck, Gary C; Mantilla, Carlos B

    2016-06-01

    Cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) interrupts descending neural drive to phrenic motoneurons causing diaphragm muscle (DIAm) paralysis. Recent studies using a well-established model of SCI, unilateral spinal hemisection of the C2 segment of the cervical spinal cord (SH), provide novel information regarding the molecular and cellular mechanisms of functional recovery after SCI. Over time post-SH, gradual recovery of rhythmic ipsilateral DIAm activity occurs. Recovery of ipsilateral DIAm electromyogram (EMG) activity following SH is enhanced by increasing brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the region of the phrenic motoneuron pool. Delivery of exogenous BDNF either via intrathecal infusion or via mesenchymal stem cells engineered to release BDNF similarly enhance recovery. Conversely, recovery after SH is blunted by quenching endogenous BDNF with the fusion-protein TrkB-Fc in the region of the phrenic motoneuron pool or by selective inhibition of TrkB kinase activity using a chemical-genetic approach in TrkB(F616A) mice. Furthermore, the importance of BDNF signaling via TrkB receptors at phrenic motoneurons is highlighted by the blunting of recovery by siRNA-mediated downregulation of TrkB receptor expression in phrenic motoneurons and by the enhancement of recovery evident following virally-induced increases in TrkB expression specifically in phrenic motoneurons. BDNF/TrkB signaling regulates synaptic plasticity in various neuronal systems, including glutamatergic pathways. Glutamatergic neurotransmission constitutes the main inspiratory-related, excitatory drive to motoneurons, and following SH, spontaneous neuroplasticity is associated with increased expression of ionotropic N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors in phrenic motoneurons. Evidence for the role of BDNF/TrkB and glutamatergic signaling in recovery of DIAm activity following cervical SCI is reviewed. PMID:26506253

  5. Bilirubin enhances neuronal excitability by increasing glutamatergic transmission in the rat lateral superior olive.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Chun-Yan; Shi, Hai-Bo; Song, Ning-Ying; Yin, Shan-Kai

    2011-06-18

    Hyperbilirubinemia is one of the most common clinical phenomena observed in human newborns. To achieve effective therapeutic treatment, numerous studies have been done to determine the molecular mechanisms of bilirubin-induced neuronal excitotoxicity. However, there is no conclusive evidence for the involvement of glutamatergic synaptic transmission in bilirubin-induced neuronal hyperexcitation and excitotoxicity. In the present study, using gramicidin-perforated patch-clamp techniques, spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) were recorded from lateral superior olive (LSO) neurons isolated from postnatal 11-14-day-old (P11-14) rats. The application of 3 μM bilirubin increased the frequency, but not the amplitude, of sEPSCs. The action of bilirubin was tetrodotoxin (TTX)-insensitive, as bilirubin also increased the frequency, but not the amplitude, of mEPSCs. The amplitudes of GABA-activated (I(GABA)) and glutamate-activated (I(glu)) currents were not affected by bilirubin. Under current-clamp conditions, no spontaneous action potentials were observed in control solution. However, the application of 3 μM bilirubin for 4-6 min evoked a considerable rate of action-potential firing. The evoked firing was partially occluded by D,L-2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid (APV), an NMDA receptor antagonist, but completely inhibited by a combination of APV and 2,3-dihydroxy-6-nitro-7-sulfamoyl-benzo[f]quinoxaline-2,3-dione (NBQX), an AMPA receptor antagonist. These results indicate that bilirubin facilitates presynaptic glutamate release, enhances glutamatergic synaptic transmission by activating postsynaptic AMPA and NMDA receptors, and leads to neuronal hyperexcitation. This study provides a better understanding of the mechanism of bilirubin-induced excitotoxicity and determines for the first time that both AMPA and NMDA receptors are likely involved in the excitotoxicity produced by bilirubin. PMID:21440030

  6. Origins of altered reinforcement effects in ADHD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tripp Gail

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD, characterized by hyperactivity, impulsiveness and deficient sustained attention, is one of the most common and persistent behavioral disorders of childhood. ADHD is associated with catecholamine dysfunction. The catecholamines are important for response selection and memory formation, and dopamine in particular is important for reinforcement of successful behavior. The convergence of dopaminergic mesolimbic and glutamatergic corticostriatal synapses upon individual neostriatal neurons provides a favorable substrate for a three-factor synaptic modification rule underlying acquisition of associations between stimuli in a particular context, responses, and reinforcers. The change in associative strength as a function of delay between key stimuli or responses, and reinforcement, is known as the delay of reinforcement gradient. The gradient is altered by vicissitudes of attention, intrusions of irrelevant events, lapses of memory, and fluctuations in dopamine function. Theoretical and experimental analyses of these moderating factors will help to determine just how reinforcement processes are altered in ADHD. Such analyses can only help to improve treatment strategies for ADHD.

  7. Origins of altered reinforcement effects in ADHD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johansen, Espen Borgå; Killeen, Peter R; Russell, Vivienne A; Tripp, Gail; Wickens, Jeff R; Tannock, Rosemary; Williams, Jonathan; Sagvolden, Terje

    2009-01-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), characterized by hyperactivity, impulsiveness and deficient sustained attention, is one of the most common and persistent behavioral disorders of childhood. ADHD is associated with catecholamine dysfunction. The catecholamines are important for response selection and memory formation, and dopamine in particular is important for reinforcement of successful behavior. The convergence of dopaminergic mesolimbic and glutamatergic corticostriatal synapses upon individual neostriatal neurons provides a favorable substrate for a three-factor synaptic modification rule underlying acquisition of associations between stimuli in a particular context, responses, and reinforcers. The change in associative strength as a function of delay between key stimuli or responses, and reinforcement, is known as the delay of reinforcement gradient. The gradient is altered by vicissitudes of attention, intrusions of irrelevant events, lapses of memory, and fluctuations in dopamine function. Theoretical and experimental analyses of these moderating factors will help to determine just how reinforcement processes are altered in ADHD. Such analyses can only help to improve treatment strategies for ADHD. PMID:19226460

  8. Neuroligins and Neurexins Link Synaptic Function to Cognitive Disease

    OpenAIRE

    Südhof, Thomas C.

    2008-01-01

    The brain processes information by transmitting signals at synapses, which connect neurons into vast networks of communicating cells. In these networks, synapses not only transmit, but also process and refine information. Neurexins and neuroligins are synaptic cell-adhesion molecules that connect pre- and postsynaptic neurons at synapses, mediate trans-synaptic signaling, and shape neural network properties by specifying synaptic functions. In humans, alterations in neurexin or neuroligin gen...

  9. Progressive brain damage, synaptic reorganization and NMDA activation in a model of epileptogenic cortical dysplasia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesca Colciaghi

    Full Text Available Whether severe epilepsy could be a progressive disorder remains as yet unresolved. We previously demonstrated in a rat model of acquired focal cortical dysplasia, the methylazoxymethanol/pilocarpine - MAM/pilocarpine - rats, that the occurrence of status epilepticus (SE and subsequent seizures fostered a pathologic process capable of modifying the morphology of cortical pyramidal neurons and NMDA receptor expression/localization. We have here extended our analysis by evaluating neocortical and hippocampal changes in MAM/pilocarpine rats at different epilepsy stages, from few days after onset up to six months of chronic epilepsy. Our findings indicate that the process triggered by SE and subsequent seizures in the malformed brain i is steadily progressive, deeply altering neocortical and hippocampal morphology, with atrophy of neocortex and CA regions and progressive increase of granule cell layer dispersion; ii changes dramatically the fine morphology of neurons in neocortex and hippocampus, by increasing cell size and decreasing both dendrite arborization and spine density; iii induces reorganization of glutamatergic and GABAergic networks in both neocortex and hippocampus, favoring excitatory vs inhibitory input; iv activates NMDA regulatory subunits. Taken together, our data indicate that, at least in experimental models of brain malformations, severe seizure activity, i.e., SE plus recurrent seizures, may lead to a widespread, steadily progressive architectural, neuronal and synaptic reorganization in the brain. They also suggest the mechanistic relevance of glutamate/NMDA hyper-activation in the seizure-related brain pathologic plasticity.

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2010-01-01

    Neuromodulators modify network output by altering neuronal firing properties and synaptic strength at multiple sites; however, the functional importance of each site is often unclear. We determined the importance of monoamine modulation of a single synapse for regulation of network cycle frequency in the oscillatory pyloric network of the lobster. The pacemaker kernel of the pyloric network receives only one chemical synaptic feedback, an inhibitory synapse from the lateral pyloric (LP) neuro...

  11. TRPV1 Marks Synaptic Segregation of Multiple Convergent Afferents at the Rat Medial Solitary Tract Nucleus

    OpenAIRE

    Peters, James H.; McDougall, Stuart J.; Fawley, Jessica A.; Andresen, Michael C.

    2011-01-01

    TRPV1 receptors are expressed on most but not all central terminals of cranial visceral afferents in the caudal solitary tract nucleus (NTS). TRPV1 is associated with unmyelinated C-fiber afferents. Both TRPV1+ and TRPV1- afferents enter NTS but their precise organization remains poorly understood. In horizontal brainstem slices, we activated solitary tract (ST) afferents and recorded ST-evoked glutamatergic excitatory synaptic currents (ST-EPSCs) under whole cell voltage clamp conditions fro...

  12. Transient expansion of synaptically connected dendritic spines upon induction of hippocampal long-term potentiation

    OpenAIRE

    Lang, Cynthia; Barco, Angel; Zablow, Leonard; Kandel, Eric R.; Siegelbaum, Steven A.; Zakharenko, Stanislav S.

    2004-01-01

    Dendritic spines are small protrusions from dendritic shafts that contain the postsynaptic sites of glutamatergic synapses in the brain. Spines undergo dramatic activity-dependent structural changes that are particularly prominent during neuronal development. Although changes in spine shape or number have been proposed to contribute to forms of synaptic plasticity that underlie learning and memory, the extent to which spines remain plastic in the adult brain is unclear. We find that induction...

  13. Flotillin-1 Promotes Formation of Glutamatergic Synapses in Hippocampal Neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Swanwick, Catherine Croft; Shapiro, Marietta E.; Vicini, Stefano; Wenthold, Robert J.

    2010-01-01

    Synapse malformation underlies numerous neurodevelopmental illnesses, including autism spectrum disorders. Here we identify the lipid raft protein flotillin-1 as a promoter of glutamatergic synapse formation. We cultured neurons from the hippocampus, a brain region important for learning and memory, and examined them at two weeks in vitro, a time period rich with synapse formation. Double-label immunocytochemistry of native flot-1 with glutamatergic and GABAergic synapse markers showed that f...

  14. Glutamatergic substrates of drug addiction and alcoholism1

    OpenAIRE

    Gass, Justin T.; Foster Olive, M.

    2007-01-01

    The past two decades have witnessed a dramatic accumulation of evidence indicating that the excitatory amino acid glutamate plays an important role in drug addiction and alcoholism. The purpose of this review is to summarize findings on glutamatergic substrates of addiction, surveying data from both human and animal studies. The effects of various drugs of abuse on glutamatergic neurotransmission are discussed, as are the effects of pharmacological or genetic manipulation of various component...

  15. Optogenetic stimulation of prefrontal glutamatergic neurons enhances recognition memory

    OpenAIRE

    Benn, Abi; Barker, Gareth R. I.; Stuart, Sarah A; Roloff, Eva v. L.; Teschemacher, Anja G; Warburton, Clea; Robinson, Emma S. J.

    2016-01-01

    Finding effective cognitive enhancers is a major health challenge; however, modulating glutamatergic neurotransmission has the potential to enhance performance in recognition memory tasks. Previous studies using glutamate receptor antagonists have revealed that the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) plays a central role in associative recognition memory. The present study investigates short-term recognition memory using optogenetics to target glutamatergic neurons within the rodent mPFC specific...

  16. Dynamic inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission by astrocyte-derived ATP in hippocampal cultures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koizumi, Schuichi; Fujishita, Kayoko; Tsuda, Makoto; Shigemoto-Mogami, Yukari; Inoue, Kazuhide

    2003-09-01

    Originally ascribed passive roles in the CNS, astrocytes are now known to have an active role in the regulation of synaptic transmission. Neuronal activity can evoke Ca2+ transients in astrocytes, and Ca2+ transients in astrocytes can evoke changes in neuronal activity. The excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate has been shown to mediate such bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. We demonstrate here that ATP, a primary mediator of intercellular Ca2+ signaling among astrocytes, also mediates intercellular signaling between astrocytes and neurons in hippocampal cultures. Mechanical stimulation of astrocytes evoked Ca2+ waves mediated by the release of ATP and the activation of P2 receptors. Mechanically evoked Ca2+ waves led to decreased excitatory glutamatergic synaptic transmission in an ATP-dependent manner. Exogenous application of ATP does not affect postsynaptic glutamatergic responses but decreased presynaptic exocytotic events. Finally, we show that astrocytes exhibit spontaneous Ca2+ waves mediated by extracellular ATP and that inhibition of these Ca2+ responses enhanced excitatory glutamatergic transmission. We therefore conclude that ATP released from astrocytes exerts tonic and activity-dependent down-regulation of synaptic transmission via presynaptic mechanisms.

  17. Noradrenergic modulation of intrinsic and synaptic properties of lumbar motoneurons in the neonatal rat spinal cord

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maylis Tartas

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Although it is known that noradrenaline powerfully controls spinal motor networks, few data are available regarding the noradrenergic modulation of intrinsic and synaptic properties of neurons in motor networks. Our work explores the cellular basis of noradrenergic modulation in the rat motor spinal cord. We first show that lumbar motoneurons express the three classes of adrenergic receptors at birth. Using patch-clamp recordings in the newborn rat spinal cord preparation, we characterized the effects of noradrenaline and of specific agonists of the three classes of adrenoreceptors on motoneuron membrane properties. Noradrenaline increases the motoneuron excitability partly via the inhibition of a KIR like current. Methoxamine (α1, clonidine (α2 and isoproterenol (β differentially modulate the motoneuron membrane potential but also increase motoneuron excitability, these effects being respectively inhibited by the antagonists prazosin (α1, yohimbine (α2 and propranolol (β. We show that the glutamatergic synaptic drive arising from the T13-L2 network is enhanced in motoneurons by noradrenaline, methoxamine and isoproterenol. On the other hand, noradrenaline, isoproterenol and clonidine inhibit both the frequency and amplitude of miniature glutamatergic EPSCs while methoxamine increases their frequency. The T13-L2 synaptic drive is thereby differentially modulated from the other glutamatergic synapses converging onto motoneurons and enhanced by presynaptic α1 and β receptor activation. Our data thus show that the noradrenergic system exerts a powerful and complex neuromodulation of lumbar motor networks in the neonatal rat spinal cord.

  18. Mechanism of the modulating action of met-enkephalin on glutamatergic synaptic transmission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The authors show that the inhibiting effect of met-enkephalin on the glutamate-induced responses of the neurons of the neostriatum may be due to the inhibiting influence of the opioid peptide on the binding of glutamate to its postsynaptic receptors. The authors extracted the striatum from the brains of Wistar rats (100-150 g) and homogenized in 20 volumes of 0.32 sucrose. The homogenate was centrifuged at 900g for 10 min. The supernatant was removed and centrifuged at 20,000g for 40 min. The precipitate obtained (P2-fraction) was subjected to hypoosmotic shock in de-ionized water and recentrifuged at 20,000g for 30 min. The precipitate, containing the fraction of plasma membranes, was suspended in 50 ml of Tris-HCl, pH 7.4, to a protein concentration of 1-2 mg/ml, and used in experiments on the binding of [3H]glutamate on the same day. To determine the binding of [3H]glutamate, 20 microliters of [3H]glutamate (specific activity 29 Ci/mmole), 20 microliters of the membrane suspension, 40 microliters of (0.5 x 10-8-10-7 M) met-enkephalin, and 100 microliters of Tris-buffer were introduced into 1.5 ml polyethylene test tubes. The final concentration of [3H]glutamate in solution was 10-8-4 x 10-7 M. Non-specific binding was determined in the presence of 10-3 M glutamate. The membranes were incubated with a solution of [3H]glutamate at 200C for 30 min

  19. Astrocytes optimize synaptic fidelity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadkarni, Suhita; Jung, Peter; Levine, Herbert

    2007-03-01

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

  20. Synaptic Plasticity and Nociception

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ChenJianguo

    2004-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity is one of the fields that progresses rapidly and has a lot of success in neuroscience. The two major types of synaptie plasticity: long-term potentiation ( LTP and long-term depression (LTD are thought to be the cellular mochanisms of learning and memory. Recently, accumulating evidence suggests that, besides serving as a cellular model for learning and memory, the synaptic plasticity involves in other physiological or pathophysiological processes, such as the perception of pain and the regulation of cardiovascular system. This minireview will focus on the relationship between synaptic plasticity and nociception.

  1. Astrocytes: Orchestrating synaptic plasticity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Pittà, M; Brunel, N; Volterra, A

    2016-05-26

    Synaptic plasticity is the capacity of a preexisting connection between two neurons to change in strength as a function of neural activity. Because synaptic plasticity is the major candidate mechanism for learning and memory, the elucidation of its constituting mechanisms is of crucial importance in many aspects of normal and pathological brain function. In particular, a prominent aspect that remains debated is how the plasticity mechanisms, that encompass a broad spectrum of temporal and spatial scales, come to play together in a concerted fashion. Here we review and discuss evidence that pinpoints to a possible non-neuronal, glial candidate for such orchestration: the regulation of synaptic plasticity by astrocytes. PMID:25862587

  2. Subtle alterations of excitatory transmission are linked to presynaptic changes in the hippocampus of PINK1-deficient mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feligioni, Marco; Mango, Dalila; Piccinin, Sonia; Imbriani, Paola; Iannuzzi, Filomena; Caruso, Alessandra; De Angelis, Francesca; Blandini, Fabio; Mercuri, Nicola B; Pisani, Antonio; Nisticò, Robert

    2016-06-01

    Homozygous or heterozygous mutations in the PTEN-induced kinase 1 (PINK1) gene have been linked to early-onset Parkinson's disease (PD). Several neurophysiological studies have demonstrated alterations in striatal synaptic plasticity along with impaired dopamine release in PINK1-deficient mice. Using electrophysiological methods, here we show that PINK1 loss of function causes a progressive increase of spontaneous glutamate-mediated synaptic events in the hippocampus, without influencing long-term potentiation. Moreover, fluorescence analysis reveals increased neurotrasmitter release although our biochemical results failed to detect which presynaptic proteins might be engaged. This study provides a novel role for PINK1 beyond the physiology of nigrostriatal dopaminergic circuit. Specifically, PINK1 might contribute to preserve synaptic function and glutamatergic homeostasis in the hippocampus, a brain region underlying cognition. The subtle changes in excitatory transmission here observed might be a pathogenic precursor to excitotoxic neurodegeneration and cognitive decline often observed in PD. Using electrophysiological and fluorescence techniques, we demonstrate that lack of PINK1 causes increased excitatory transmission and neurotransmitter release in the hippocampus, which might lead to the cognitive decline often observed in Parkinson's disease. PMID:26850695

  3. Novel model of neuronal bioenergetics: postsynaptic utilization of glucose but not lactate correlates positively with Ca2+ signalling in cultured mouse glutamatergic neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sevan A.A. Faek

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available We have previously investigated the relative roles of extracellular glucose and lactate as fuels for glutamatergic neurons during synaptic activity. The conclusion from these studies was that cultured glutamatergic neurons utilize glucose rather than lactate during NMDA (N-methyl-d-aspartate-induced synaptic activity and that lactate alone is not able to support neurotransmitter glutamate homoeostasis. Subsequently, a model was proposed to explain these results at the cellular level. In brief, the intermittent rises in intracellular Ca2+ during activation cause influx of Ca2+ into the mitochondrial matrix thus activating the tricarboxylic acid cycle dehydrogenases. This will lead to a lower activity of the MASH (malate–aspartate shuttle, which in turn will result in anaerobic glycolysis and lactate production rather than lactate utilization. In the present work, we have investigated the effect of an ionomycin-induced increase in intracellular Ca2+ (i.e. independent of synaptic activity on neuronal energy metabolism employing 13C-labelled glucose and lactate and subsequent mass spectrometric analysis of labelling in glutamate, alanine and lactate. The results demonstrate that glucose utilization is positively correlated with intracellular Ca2+ whereas lactate utilization is not. This result lends further support for a significant role of glucose in neuronal bioenergetics and that Ca2+ signalling may control the switch between glucose and lactate utilization during synaptic activity. Based on the results, we propose a compartmentalized CiMASH (Ca2+-induced limitation of the MASH model that includes intracellular compartmentation of glucose and lactate metabolism. We define pre- and post-synaptic compartments metabolizing glucose and glucose plus lactate respectively in which the latter displays a positive correlation between oxidative metabolism of glucose and Ca2+ signalling.

  4. Synaptic Vesicle Exocytosis

    OpenAIRE

    Südhof, Thomas C; Rizo, Josep

    2011-01-01

    Presynaptic nerve terminals release neurotransmitters by synaptic vesicle exocytosis. Membrane fusion mediating synaptic exocytosis and other intracellular membrane traffic is affected by a universal machinery that includes SNARE (for “soluble NSF-attachment protein receptor”) and SM (for “Sec1/Munc18-like”) proteins. During fusion, vesicular and target SNARE proteins assemble into an α-helical trans-SNARE complex that forces the two membranes tightly together, and SM proteins likely wrap aro...

  5. Role of synaptic and nonsynaptic glutamate receptors in ischaemia induced neurotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brassai, A; Suvanjeiev, R-G; Bán, E-Gy; Lakatos, M

    2015-03-01

    In acute ischaemic brain injury and chronic neurodegeneration, the first step leading to excitotoxicity and cell death is the excessive release of Glu and the prolonged activation of Glu receptors, followed by intracellular calcium overload. There is apparent agreement that glutamatergic transmission via synaptic NMDA receptors (composed of GluN2A subunits) is neuroprotective, whereas transmission via non-synaptic NMDA receptors (composed of GluN2B subunits) is excitotoxic. Extrasynaptic NMDARs activate cell death pathways and may play a key role in Glu-induced excitotoxic neurodegeneration and apoptosis. Accordingly, the function of protective pathways may be impaired by the concomitant blockade of GluN2A-containing receptors. In contrast, the selective inhibition of non-synaptic GluN2B-containing NMDARs may be beneficial in neuroprotection because it can prevent neuronal cell death and thus maintain protective pathways. PMID:25540918

  6. Synaptic pathology: A shared mechanism in neurological disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henstridge, Christopher M; Pickett, Eleanor; Spires-Jones, Tara L

    2016-07-01

    Synaptic proteomes have evolved a rich and complex diversity to allow the exquisite control of neuronal communication and information transfer. It is therefore not surprising that many neurological disorders are associated with alterations in synaptic function. As technology has advanced, our ability to study the anatomical and physiological function of synapses in greater detail has revealed a critical role for both central and peripheral synapses in neurodegenerative disease. Synapse loss has a devastating effect on cellular communication, leading to wide ranging effects such as network disruption within central neural systems and muscle wastage in the periphery. These devastating effects link synaptic pathology to a diverse range of neurological disorders, spanning Alzheimer's disease to multiple sclerosis. This review will highlight some of the current literature on synaptic integrity in animal models of disease and human post-mortem studies. Synaptic changes in normal brain ageing will also be discussed and finally the current and prospective treatments for neurodegenerative disorders will be summarised. PMID:27108053

  7. Spatial relationships between GABAergic and glutamatergic synapses on the dendrites of distinct types of mouse retinal ganglion cells across development.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Bleckert

    Full Text Available Neuronal output requires a concerted balance between excitatory and inhibitory (I/E input. Like other circuits, inhibitory synaptogenesis in the retina precedes excitatory synaptogenesis. How then do neurons attain their mature balance of I/E ratios despite temporal offset in synaptogenesis? To directly compare the development of glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses onto the same cell, we biolistically transfected retinal ganglion cells (RGCs with PSD95CFP, a marker of glutamatergic postsynaptic sites, in transgenic Thy1-YFPγ2 mice in which GABAA receptors are fluorescently tagged. We mapped YFPγ2 and PSD95CFP puncta distributions on three RGC types at postnatal day P12, shortly before eye opening, and at P21 when robust light responses in RGCs are present. The mature IGABA/E ratios varied among ON-Sustained (S A-type, OFF-S A-type, and bistratified direction selective (DS RGCs. These ratios were attained at different rates, before eye-opening for ON-S and OFF-S A-type, and after eye-opening for DS RGCs. At both ages examined, the IGABA/E ratio was uniform across the arbors of the three RGC types. Furthermore, measurements of the distances between neighboring PSD95CFP and YFPγ2 puncta on RGC dendrites indicate that their local relationship is established early in development, and cannot be predicted by random organization. These close spatial associations between glutamatergic and GABAergic postsynaptic sites appear to represent local synaptic arrangements revealed by correlative light and EM reconstructions of a single RGC's dendrites. Thus, although RGC types have different IGABA/E ratios and establish these ratios at separate rates, the local relationship between excitatory and inhibitory inputs appear similarly constrained across the RGC types studied.

  8. Spatial Relationships between GABAergic and Glutamatergic Synapses on the Dendrites of Distinct Types of Mouse Retinal Ganglion Cells across Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bleckert, Adam; Parker, Edward D.; Kang, YunHee; Pancaroglu, Raika; Soto, Florentina; Lewis, Renate; Craig, Ann Marie; Wong, Rachel O. L.

    2013-01-01

    Neuronal output requires a concerted balance between excitatory and inhibitory (I/E) input. Like other circuits, inhibitory synaptogenesis in the retina precedes excitatory synaptogenesis. How then do neurons attain their mature balance of I/E ratios despite temporal offset in synaptogenesis? To directly compare the development of glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses onto the same cell, we biolistically transfected retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) with PSD95CFP, a marker of glutamatergic postsynaptic sites, in transgenic Thy1­YFPγ2 mice in which GABAA receptors are fluorescently tagged. We mapped YFPγ2 and PSD95CFP puncta distributions on three RGC types at postnatal day P12, shortly before eye opening, and at P21 when robust light responses in RGCs are present. The mature IGABA/E ratios varied among ON-Sustained (S) A-type, OFF-S A-type, and bistratified direction selective (DS) RGCs. These ratios were attained at different rates, before eye-opening for ON-S and OFF-S A-type, and after eye-opening for DS RGCs. At both ages examined, the IGABA/E ratio was uniform across the arbors of the three RGC types. Furthermore, measurements of the distances between neighboring PSD95CFP and YFPγ2 puncta on RGC dendrites indicate that their local relationship is established early in development, and cannot be predicted by random organization. These close spatial associations between glutamatergic and GABAergic postsynaptic sites appear to represent local synaptic arrangements revealed by correlative light and EM reconstructions of a single RGC's dendrites. Thus, although RGC types have different IGABA/E ratios and establish these ratios at separate rates, the local relationship between excitatory and inhibitory inputs appear similarly constrained across the RGC types studied. PMID:23922756

  9. Involvement of glutamatergic neurotransmission in the antidepressant-like effect of zinc in the chronic unpredictable stress model of depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manosso, Luana M; Moretti, Morgana; Colla, André R; Ribeiro, Camille M; Dal-Cim, Tharine; Tasca, Carla I; Rodrigues, Ana Lúcia S

    2016-03-01

    Stress and excessive glutamatergic neurotransmission have been implicated in the pathophysiology of depression. Therefore, this study was aimed at investigating the influence of zinc on depressive-like behavior induced by chronic unpredictable stress (CUS), on alterations in glutamate-induced toxicity and immunocontent of proteins involved in the control of glutamatergic neurotransmission in the hippocampus of mice. Mice were subjected to CUS procedure for 14 days. From the 8th to the 14th day, mice received zinc chloride (ZnCl2) (10 mg/kg) or fluoxetine (10 mg/kg, positive control) once a day by oral route. CUS caused a depressive-like behavior evidenced by the increased immobility time in the tail suspension test (TST), which was prevented by treatment with ZnCl2 or fluoxetine. Ex vivo exposure of hippocampal slices to glutamate (10 mM) resulted in a significant decrease on cell viability; however, neither CUS procedure nor drug treatments altered this reduction. No alterations in the immunocontents of GLT-1 and GFAP or p-Akt were observed in any experimental group. The ratio of p-Akt/AKT was also not altered in any group. However, Akt immunocontent was increased in stressed mice and in animals treated with ZnCl2 (stressed or non-stressed mice) and EAAC1 immunocontent was increased in stressed mice treated with ZnCl2, fluoxetine or vehicle and in non-stressed mice treated with ZnCl2 and fluoxetine. These findings indicate a robust effect of zinc in reversing behavioral alteration induced by CUS in mice, through a possible modulation of the glutamatergic neurotransmission, extending literature data regarding the mechanisms underlying its antidepressant-like action. PMID:26747027

  10. In Vivo Chronic Intermittent Ethanol Exposure Reverses the Polarity of Synaptic Plasticity in the Nucleus Accumbens Shell

    OpenAIRE

    Jeanes, Zachary M.; Buske, Tavanna R.; Morrisett, Richard A.

    2011-01-01

    Glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) is implicated in response to sensitization to psychomotor-stimulating agents, yet ethanol effects here are undefined. We studied the acute in vitro and in vivo effects of ethanol in medium spiny neurons from the shell NAc subregion of slices of C57BL/6 mice by using whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazole-4-propionic acid (AMPA) excitatory postsynaptic current (EPSCs). Synaptic conditioning (l...

  11. Alterations in synaptic curvature in the dentate gyrus following induction of long-term potentiation, long-term depression, and treatment with the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist CPP

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Medvedev, N. I.; Popov, V. I.; Dallerac, G.; Davies, H.A.; Laroche, S.; Kraev, I. V.; Rodríguez Arellano, Jose Julio; Doyere, V.; Stewart, M.G.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 171, č. 2 (2010), s. 390-397. ISSN 0306-4522 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50390703 Keywords : D synaptic ultrastructure * hippocampus * long term potentiation and depression Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 3.215, year: 2010

  12. A method for the three-dimensional reconstruction of Neurobiotin™-filled neurons and the location of their synaptic inputs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Joseph Fogarty

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Here, we describe a robust method for mapping the number and type of neuro-chemically distinct synaptic inputs that a single reconstructed neuron receives. We have used individual hypoglossal motor neurons filled with Neurobiotin by semi-loose seal electroporation in thick brainstem slices. These filled motor neurons were then processed for excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs, using immunohistochemical-labeling procedures. For excitatory synapses, we used anti-VGLUT2 to locate glutamatergic pre-synaptic terminals and anti-PSD-95 to locate post-synaptic specializations on and within the surface of these filled motor neurons. For inhibitory synapses, we used anti-VGAT to locate GABAergic pre-synaptic terminals and anti-GABA-A receptor subunit α1 to locate the post-synaptic domain. The Neurobiotin-filled and immuno-labeled motor neuron was then processed for optical sectioning using confocal microscopy. The morphology of the motor neuron including its dendritic tree and the distribution of excitatory and inhibitory synapses were then determined by three-dimensional reconstruction using IMARIS software (Bitplane. Using surface rendering, fluorescence thresholding, and masking of unwanted immuno-labeling, tools found in IMARIS, we were able to obtain an accurate 3D structure of an individual neuron including the number and location of its glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic inputs. The power of this method allows for a rapid morphological confirmation of the post-synaptic responses recorded by patch-clamp prior to Neurobiotin filling. Finally, we show that this method can be adapted to super-resolution microscopy techniques, which will enhance its applicability to the study of neural circuits at the level of synapses.

  13. NMDA receptors mediate synaptic competition in culture.

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    Kevin She

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

  14. Agrin and synaptic laminin are required to maintain adult neuromuscular junctions.

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    Melanie A Samuel

    Full Text Available As synapses form and mature the synaptic partners produce organizing molecules that regulate each other's differentiation and ensure precise apposition of pre- and post-synaptic specializations. At the skeletal neuromuscular junction (NMJ, these molecules include agrin, a nerve-derived organizer of postsynaptic differentiation, and synaptic laminins, muscle-derived organizers of presynaptic differentiation. Both become concentrated in the synaptic cleft as the NMJ develops and are retained in adulthood. Here, we used mutant mice to ask whether these organizers are also required for synaptic maintenance. Deletion of agrin from a subset of adult motor neurons resulted in the loss of acetylcholine receptors and other components of the postsynaptic apparatus and synaptic cleft. Nerve terminals also atrophied and eventually withdrew from muscle fibers. On the other hand, mice lacking the presynaptic organizer laminin-α4 retained most of the synaptic cleft components but exhibited synaptic alterations reminiscent of those observed in aged animals. Although we detected no marked decrease in laminin or agrin levels at aged NMJs, we observed alterations in the distribution and organization of these synaptic cleft components suggesting that such changes could contribute to age-related synaptic disassembly. Together, these results demonstrate that pre- and post-synaptic organizers actively function to maintain the structure and function of adult NMJs.

  15. Synaptic vesicle recycling at the calyx of Held

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lei XUE; Yan-ai MEI

    2011-01-01

    Efficient endocytosis is crucial for maintaining synaptic transmission because of its role in retrieving constituent membrane and associated proteins. In the past three decades three modes of endocytosis have been proposed involving the central nervous system: clathrin-mediated endocytosis, kiss-and-run endocytosis and bulk endocytosis. These forms of endocytosis can be induced under different conditions, but their detailed molecular mechanisms and functions are largely unknown. Here, we review the existence and initiation of all three modes of endocytosis at a giant glutamatergic synapse, the calyx of Held. The possibility of direct electrophysiology recording in this synapse allows for accurate tracking of exocytosis and endocytosis via capacitance measurements. Future aims will be focused on identifying the molecules that undergo the different mechanisms of endocytosis and the conditions under which different forms of endocytosis predominate.

  16. Functional significance of brain glycogen in sustaining glutamatergic neurotransmission

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sickmann, Helle M; Walls, Anne B; Schousboe, Arne;

    2009-01-01

    The involvement of brain glycogen in sustaining neuronal activity has previously been demonstrated. However, to what extent energy derived from glycogen is consumed by astrocytes themselves or is transferred to the neurons in the form of lactate for oxidative metabolism to proceed is at present...... for the astrocytic compartment. By inhibiting glycogen degradation in co-cultures it was evident that glycogen provides energy to sustain glutamatergic neurotransmission, i.e. release and uptake of glutamate. The relocation of glycogen derived lactate to the neuronal compartment was investigated by...... unclear. The significance of glycogen in fueling glutamate uptake into astrocytes was specifically addressed in cultured astrocytes. Moreover, the objective was to elucidate whether glycogen derived energy is important for maintaining glutamatergic neurotransmission, induced by repetitive exposure to NMDA...

  17. Synaptic contacts impaired by styrene-7,8-oxide toxicity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Styrene-7,8-oxide (SO), a chemical compound widely used in industrial applications, is a potential hazard for humans, particularly in occupational settings. Neurobehavioral changes are consistently observed in occupationally exposed individuals and alterations of neurotransmitters associated with neuronal loss have been reported in animal models. Although the toxic effects of styrene have been extensively documented, the molecular mechanisms responsible for SO-induced neurotoxicity are still unclear. A possible dopamine-mediated effect of styrene neurotoxicity has been previously demonstrated, since styrene oxide alters dopamine neurotransmission in the brain. Thus, the present study hypothesizes that styrene neurotoxicity may involve synaptic contacts. Primary striatal neurons were exposed to styrene oxide at different concentrations (0.1-1 mM) for different time periods (8, 16, and 24 h) to evaluate the dose able to induce synaptic impairments. The expression of proteins crucial for synaptic transmission such as Synapsin, Synaptophysin, and RAC-1 were considered. The levels of Synaptophysin and RAC-1 decreased in a dose-dependent manner. Accordingly, morphological alterations, observed at the ultrastructural level, primarily involved the pre-synaptic compartment. In SO-exposed cultures, the biochemical cascade of caspases was activated affecting the cytoskeleton components as their target. Thus the impairments in synaptic contacts observed in SO-exposed cultures might reflect a primarily morphological alteration of neuronal cytoskeleton. In addition, our data support the hypothesis developed by previous authors of reactive oxygen species (ROS) initiating events of SO cytotoxicity

  18. The Glutamatergic Neurotransmission in the Central Nervous System

    OpenAIRE

    Marmiroli, PL; Cavaletti, GA

    2012-01-01

    Glutamate is one of the major neurotrasmitters in mammalian brain and changes in its concentration have been associated with a number of neurological disorders, including neurodegenerative, cerebrovascular diseases and epilepsy. Moreover, recently a possible role for glutamatergic system dysfunction has been suggested also in the peripheral nervous system. This chapter will revise the current knowledge in the distribution of glutamate and of its receptors and transporters in the central nervo...

  19. Lineage origins of GABAergic versus glutamatergic neurons in the neocortex

    OpenAIRE

    Marín, Oscar; Müller, Ulrich

    2014-01-01

    Neocortical circuits are assembled from subtypes of glutamatergic excitatory and GABAergic inhibitory neurons with divergent anatomical and molecular signatures and unique physiological properties. Excitatory neurons derive from progenitors in the pallium, whereas inhibitory neurons originate from progenitors in the subpallium. Both classes of neurons subsequently migrate along well-defined routes to their final target area, where they integrate into common neuronal circuits. Recent findings ...

  20. Role of astrocytic transport processes in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, A; Sarup, A; Bak, L K;

    2004-01-01

    The fine tuning of both glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission is to a large extent dependent upon optimal function of astrocytic transport processes. Thus, glutamate transport in astrocytes is mandatory to maintain extrasynaptic glutamate levels sufficiently low to prevent excitotoxic...... neuronal damage. In GABA synapses hyperactivity of astroglial GABA uptake may lead to diminished GABAergic inhibitory activity resulting in seizures. As a consequence of this the expression and functional activity of astrocytic glutamate and GABA transport is regulated in a number of ways at...

  1. Differential Dendritic Integration of Synaptic Potentials and Calcium in Cerebellar Interneurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran-Van-Minh, Alexandra; Abrahamsson, Therése; Cathala, Laurence; DiGregorio, David A

    2016-08-17

    Dendritic voltage integration determines the transformation of synaptic inputs into output firing, while synaptic calcium integration drives plasticity mechanisms thought to underlie memory storage. Dendritic calcium integration has been shown to follow the same synaptic input-output relationship as dendritic voltage, but whether similar operations apply to neurons exhibiting sublinear voltage integration is unknown. We examined the properties and cellular mechanisms of these dendritic operations in cerebellar molecular layer interneurons using dendritic voltage and calcium imaging, in combination with synaptic stimulation or glutamate uncaging. We show that, while synaptic potentials summate sublinearly, concomitant dendritic calcium signals summate either linearly or supralinearly depending on the number of synapses activated. The supralinear dendritic calcium triggers a branch-specific, short-term suppression of neurotransmitter release that alters the pattern of synaptic activation. Thus, differential voltage and calcium integration permits dynamic regulation of neuronal input-output transformations without altering intrinsic nonlinear integration mechanisms. PMID:27537486

  2. Endocannabinoids differentially modulate synaptic plasticity in rat hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian-Yi Xu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons receive two excitatory glutamatergic synaptic inputs: their most distal dendritic regions in the stratum lacunosum-moleculare (SLM are innervated by the perforant path (PP, originating from layer III of the entorhinal cortex, while their more proximal regions of the apical dendrites in the stratum radiatum (SR are innervated by the Schaffer-collaterals (SC, originating from hippocampal CA3 neurons. Endocannabinoids (eCBs are naturally occurring mediators capable of modulating both GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic transmission and plasticity via the CB1 receptor. Previous work on eCB modulation of excitatory synapses in the CA1 region largely focuses on the SC pathway. However, little information is available on whether and how eCBs modulate glutamatergic synaptic transmission and plasticity at PP synapses. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: By employing somatic and dendritic patch-clamp recordings, Ca(2+ uncaging, and immunostaining, we demonstrate that there are significant differences in low-frequency stimulation (LFS- or DHPG-, an agonist of group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs, induced long-term depression (LTD of excitatory synaptic transmission between SC and PP synapses in the same pyramidal neurons. These differences are eliminated by pharmacological inhibition with selective CB1 receptor antagonists or genetic deletion of the CB1 receptor, indicating that these differences likely result from differential modulation via a CB1 receptor-dependent mechanism. We also revealed that depolarization-induced suppression of excitation (DSE, a form of short-term synaptic plasticity, and photolysis of caged Ca(2+-induced suppression of Excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs were less at the PP than that at the SC. In addition, application of WIN55212 (WIN induced a more pronounced inhibition of EPSCs at the SC when compared to that at the PP. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results suggest

  3. Effects of decreased inhibition on synaptic plasticity and dendritic morphology in the juvenile prefrontal cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xanthippi Konstantoudaki

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Excitation-inhibition balance is critical for maintaining proper functioning of the cerebral cortex, as evident from electrophysiological and modeling studies, and it is also important for animal behavior (Yizhar et al., 2011. In the cerebral cortex, excitation is provided by glutamate release from pyramidal neurons, while inhibition is provided by GABA release from several types of interneurons. Many neuropsychiatric disorders, such as epilepsy, anxiety, schizophrenia and autism exhibit an imbalance between the excitatory and inhibitory mechanisms of cortical circuits within key brain regions as prefrontal cortex or hippocampus, primarily through dysfunctions in the inhibitory system (Lewis, Volk, & Hashimoto, 2003; Marín, 2012 Given the significant role of GABAergic inhibition in shaping proper function of the cerebral cortex, we used a mouse model of developmentally decreased GABAergic inhibition in order to examine its effects in network properties, namely basal synaptic transmission, synaptic plasticity and dendritic morphology of pyramidal neurons. For our study, we used mice (postnatal day 20-30 in which the Rac1 protein was deleted from Nkx2.1-expressing neurons (Vidaki et al., 2012, (Rac1fl/flNkx2.1 +/cre referred as Rac1 KO mice, and heterozygous (Rac1+/flNkx2.1 +/cre or control (Rac1+/flNkx2.1 +/+ mice. The specific ablation of Rac1 protein from NKx2.1-expressing MGE-derived progenitors leads to a perturbation of their cell cycle exit resulting in decreased number of interneurons in the cortex(Vidaki et al, 2012. We prepared brain slices from the prefrontal cortex and recorded field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs from layer II neurons while stimulating axons in layer II. We find that the evoked fEPSPs are decreased in Rac1 KO mice compared to Rac1 heterozygous or control mice. This could suggest that the decreased GABAergic inhibition causes network alterations that result in reduced glutamatergic function. Furthermore

  4. Stress, trauma and PTSD: translational insights into the core synaptic circuitry and its modulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, Maxwell R; Hatton, Sean N; Lagopoulos, Jim

    2016-06-01

    Evidence is considered as to whether behavioral criteria for diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are applicable to that of traumatized animals and whether the phenomena of acquisition, extinction and reactivation of fear behavior in animals are also successfully applicable to humans. This evidence suggests an affirmative answer in both cases. Furthermore, the deficits in gray matter found in PTSD, determined with magnetic resonance imaging, are also observed in traumatized animals, lending neuropsychological support to the use of animals to probe what has gone awry in PTSD. Such animal experiments indicate that the core synaptic circuitry mediating behavior following trauma consists of the amygdala, ventral-medial prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, all of which are modulated by the basal ganglia. It is not clear if this is the case in PTSD as the observations using fMRI are equivocal and open to technical objections. Nevertheless, the effects of the basal ganglia in controlling glutamatergic synaptic transmission through dopaminergic and serotonergic synaptic mechanisms in the core synaptic circuitry provides a ready explanation for why modifying these mechanisms delays extinction in animal models and predisposes towards PTSD. In addition, changes of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the core synaptic circuitry have significant effects on acquisition and extinction in animal experiments with single nucleotide polymorphisms in the BDNF gene predisposing to PTSD. PMID:25985955

  5. Impaired synaptic clustering of postsynaptic density proteins and altered signal transmission in hippocampal neurons, and disrupted learning behavior in PDZ1 and PDZ2 ligand binding-deficient PSD-95 knockin mice

    OpenAIRE

    Nagura Hitoshi; Ishikawa Yasuyuki; Kobayashi Katsunori; Takao Keizo; Tanaka Tomo; Nishikawa Kouki; Tamura Hideki; Shiosaka Sadao; Suzuki Hidenori; Miyakawa Tsuyoshi; Fujiyoshi Yoshinori; Doi Tomoko

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Background Postsynaptic density (PSD)-95-like membrane-associated guanylate kinases (PSD-MAGUKs) are scaffold proteins in PSDs that cluster signaling molecules near NMDA receptors. PSD-MAGUKs share a common domain structure, including three PDZ (PDZ1/2/3) domains in their N-terminus. While multiple domains enable the PSD-MAGUKs to bind various ligands, the contribution of each PDZ domain to synaptic organization and function is not fully understood. Here, we focused on the PDZ1/2 dom...

  6. Linking Cholinergic Interneurons, Synaptic Plasticity, and Behavior during the Extinction of a Cocaine-Context Association.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Junuk; Finkelstein, Joel; Choi, Jung Yoon; Witten, Ilana B

    2016-06-01

    Despite the fact that cholinergic interneurons are a key cell type within the nucleus accumbens, a relationship between synaptic plasticity and the in vivo activity of cholinergic interneurons remains to be established. Here, we identify a three-way link between the activity of cholinergic interneurons, synaptic plasticity, and learning in mice undergoing the extinction of a cocaine-context association. We found that activity of cholinergic interneurons regulates extinction learning for a cocaine-context association and generates a sustained reduction in glutamatergic presynaptic strength onto medium spiny neurons. Interestingly, activation of cholinergic interneurons does not support reinforcement learning or plasticity by itself, suggesting that these neurons have a modulatory rather than a reinforcing function. PMID:27210555

  7. Calcineurin, Synaptic Plasticity, and Memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carl Weitlauf

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available A long-held hypothesis in neuroscience holds that learning and memory mechanisms involve lasting changes in synaptic weights. Multiple mechanisms for producing such changes exist, of which NMDA-receptor–dependent long-term potentiation (LTP is the most widely studied. Curiously, the relatively simple hypothesis that LTP plays a role in learning and memory has proven difficult to test. A current experimental strategy is to generate genetically altered mice with mutations in genes thought to be involved in LTP and assess the effects of these mutations both on LTP and animal behavior[1,2]. A difficulty associated with these approaches has been that they are not temporally or spatially refined. To alleviate this problem, Dr. Isabelle Mansuy and colleagues used an inducible and reversible transgene expression system in which transgene expression could be controlled on a week-to-week timescale to assess the effects of genetic reduction of the activity of a protein phosphatase known as calcineurin or PP2B in adult mouse forebrain[3,4].

  8. Enhancement by citral of glutamatergic spontaneous excitatory transmission in adult rat substantia gelatinosa neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Lan; Fujita, Tsugumi; Jiang, Chang-Yu; Kumamoto, Eiichi

    2016-02-10

    Although citral, which is abundantly present in lemongrass, has various actions including antinociception, how citral affects synaptic transmission has not been examined as yet. Citral activates in heterologous cells transient receptor potential vanilloid-1, ankyrin-1, and melastatin-8 (TRPV1, TRPA1, and TRPM8, respectively) channels, the activation of which in the spinal lamina II [substantia gelatinosa (SG)] increases the spontaneous release of L-glutamate from nerve terminals. It remains to be examined what types of transient receptor potential channel in native neurons are activated by citral. With a focus on transient receptor potential activation, we examined the effect of citral on glutamatergic spontaneous excitatory transmission using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique to SG neurons in adult rat spinal cord slices. Bath-applied citral for 3 min increased the frequency of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic current in a concentration-dependent manner (half-maximal effective concentration=0.58 mM), with a small increase in its amplitude. The spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic current frequency increase produced by citral was repeated at a time interval of 30 min, albeit this action recovered with a slow time course after washout. The presynaptic effect of citral was inhibited by TRPA1 antagonist HC-030031, but not by voltage-gated Na-channel blocker tetrodotoxin, TRPV1 antagonist capsazepine, and TRPM8 antagonist BCTC. It is concluded that citral increases spontaneous L-glutamate release in SG neurons by activating TRPA1 channels. Considering that the SG plays a pivotal role in modulating nociceptive transmission from the periphery, the citral activity could contribute toward at least a part of the modulation. PMID:26720890

  9. Comparison of spike parameters from optically identified GABAergic and glutamatergic neurons in sparse cortical cultures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heiko J Luhmann

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Primary neuronal cultures share many typical features with the in vivo situation, including similarities in distinct electrical activity patterns and synaptic network interactions. Here, we use multi-electrode array (MEA recordings from spontaneously active cultures of wildtype and GAD67-GFP transgenic mice to evaluate which spike parameters differ between GABAergic interneurons and principal, putatively glutamatergic neurons. To analyze this question we combine MEA recordings with optical imaging in sparse cortical cultures to assign individual spikes to visually-identified single neurons. In our culture system, excitatory and inhibitory neurons are present at a similar ratio as described in vivo, and spike waveform characteristics and firing patterns are fully developed after two weeks in vitro. Spike amplitude, but not other spike waveform parameters, correlated with the distance between the recording electrode and the location of the assigned neuron´s soma. Cluster analysis of spike waveform properties revealed no particular cell population that may be assigned to putative inhibitory or excitatory neurons. Moreover, experiments in primary cultures from transgenic GAD67-GFP mice, which allow optical identification of GABAergic interneurons and thus unambiguous assignment of extracellular signals, did not reveal any significant difference in spike timing and spike waveform parameters between inhibitory and excitatory neurons. Despite of our detailed characterization of spike waveform and temporal spiking properties we could not identify an unequivocal electrical parameter to discriminate between individual excitatory and inhibitory neurons in vitro. Our data suggest that under in vitro conditions cellular classifications of single neurons on the basis of their extracellular firing properties should be treated with caution.

  10. MPTP-meditated hippocampal dopamine deprivation modulates synaptic transmission and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Parkinson's disease (PD)-like symptoms including learning deficits are inducible by 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). Therefore, it is possible that MPTP may disturb hippocampal memory processing by modulation of dopamine (DA)- and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. We demonstrate here that intraperitoneal (i.p.) MPTP injection reduces the number of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive neurons in the substantia nigra (SN) within 7 days. Subsequently, the TH expression level in SN and hippocampus and the amount of DA and its metabolite DOPAC in striatum and hippocampus decrease. DA depletion does not alter basal synaptic transmission and changes pair-pulse facilitation (PPF) of field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) only at the 30 ms inter-pulse interval. In addition, the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP) is impaired whereas the duration of long-term depression (LTD) becomes prolonged. Since both LTP and LTD depend critically on activation of NMDA and DA receptors, we also tested the effect of DA depletion on NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission. Seven days after MPTP injection, the NMDA receptor-mediated fEPSPs are decreased by about 23%. Blocking the NMDA receptor-mediated fEPSP does not mimic the MPTP-LTP. Only co-application of D1/D5 and NMDA receptor antagonists during tetanization resembled the time course of fEPSP potentiation as observed 7 days after i.p. MPTP injection. Together, our data demonstrate that MPTP-induced degeneration of DA neurons and the subsequent hippocampal DA depletion alter NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. - Highlights: → I.p. MPTP-injection mediates death of dopaminergic neurons. → I.p. MPTP-injection depletes DA and DOPAC in striatum and hippocampus. → I.p. MPTP-injection does not alter basal synaptic transmission. → Reduction of LTP and enhancement of LTD after i.p. MPTP-injection. → Attenuation of NMDA-receptors mediated

  11. Muscarinic receptor subtypes differentially control synaptic input and excitability of cerebellum-projecting medial vestibular nucleus neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Yun; Chen, Shao-Rui; Pan, Hui-Lin

    2016-04-01

    Neurons in the vestibular nuclei have a vital function in balance maintenance, gaze stabilization, and posture. Although muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs) are expressed and involved in regulating vestibular function, it remains unclear how individual mAChR subtypes regulate vestibular neuronal activity. In this study, we determined which specific subtypes of mAChRs control synaptic input and excitability of medial vestibular nucleus (MVN) neurons that project to the cerebellum. Cerebellum-projecting MVN neurons were labeled by a fluorescent retrograde tracer and then identified in rat brainstem slices. Quantitative PCR analysis suggested that M2 and M3 were the possible major mAChR subtypes expressed in the MVN. The mAChR agonist oxotremorine-M significantly reduced the amplitude of glutamatergic excitatory post-synaptic currents evoked by stimulation of vestibular primary afferents, and this effect was abolished by the M2-preferring antagonist AF-DX 116. However, oxotremorine-M had no effect on GABA-mediated spontaneous inhibitory post-synaptic currents of labeled MVN neurons. Furthermore, oxotremorine-M significantly increased the firing activity of labeled MVN neurons, and this effect was blocked by the M3-preferring antagonist J104129 in most neurons tested. In addition, AF-DX 116 reduced the onset latency and prolonged the excitatory effect of oxotremorine-M on the firing activity of labeled MVN neurons. Our findings suggest that M3 is the predominant post-synaptic mAChR involved in muscarinic excitation of cerebellum-projecting MVN neurons. Pre-synaptic M2 mAChR regulates excitatory glutamatergic input from vestibular primary afferents, which in turn influences the excitability of cerebellum-projecting MVN neurons. This new information has important therapeutic implications for treating vestibular disorders with mAChR subtype-selective agents. Medial vestibular nucleus (MVN) neurons projecting to the cerebellum are involved in balance control. We

  12. Synaptic electronics: materials, devices and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In this paper, the recent progress of synaptic electronics is reviewed. The basics of biological synaptic plasticity and learning are described. The material properties and electrical switching characteristics of a variety of synaptic devices are discussed, with a focus on the use of synaptic devices for neuromorphic or brain-inspired computing. Performance metrics desirable for large-scale implementations of synaptic devices are illustrated. A review of recent work on targeted computing applications with synaptic devices is presented. (topical review)

  13. A Model of Synaptic Reconsolidation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kastner, David B.; Schwalger, Tilo; Ziegler, Lorric; Gerstner, Wulfram

    2016-01-01

    Reconsolidation of memories has mostly been studied at the behavioral and molecular level. Here, we put forward a simple extension of existing computational models of synaptic consolidation to capture hippocampal slice experiments that have been interpreted as reconsolidation at the synaptic level. The model implements reconsolidation through stabilization of consolidated synapses by stabilizing entities combined with an activity-dependent reservoir of stabilizing entities that are immune to protein synthesis inhibition (PSI). We derive a reduced version of our model to explore the conditions under which synaptic reconsolidation does or does not occur, often referred to as the boundary conditions of reconsolidation. We find that our computational model of synaptic reconsolidation displays complex boundary conditions. Our results suggest that a limited resource of hypothetical stabilizing molecules or complexes, which may be implemented by protein phosphorylation or different receptor subtypes, can underlie the phenomenon of synaptic reconsolidation. PMID:27242410

  14. Cell-specific synaptic plasticity induced by network oscillations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zarnadze, Shota; Bäuerle, Peter; Santos-Torres, Julio; Böhm, Claudia; Schmitz, Dietmar; Geiger, Jörg Rp; Dugladze, Tamar; Gloveli, Tengis

    2016-01-01

    Gamma rhythms are known to contribute to the process of memory encoding. However, little is known about the underlying mechanisms at the molecular, cellular and network levels. Using local field potential recording in awake behaving mice and concomitant field potential and whole-cell recordings in slice preparations we found that gamma rhythms lead to activity-dependent modification of hippocampal networks, including alterations in sharp wave-ripple complexes. Network plasticity, expressed as long-lasting increases in sharp wave-associated synaptic currents, exhibits enhanced excitatory synaptic strength in pyramidal cells that is induced postsynaptically and depends on metabotropic glutamate receptor-5 activation. In sharp contrast, alteration of inhibitory synaptic strength is independent of postsynaptic activation and less pronounced. Further, we found a cell type-specific, directionally biased synaptic plasticity of two major types of GABAergic cells, parvalbumin- and cholecystokinin-expressing interneurons. Thus, we propose that gamma frequency oscillations represent a network state that introduces long-lasting synaptic plasticity in a cell-specific manner. PMID:27218453

  15. Haploinsufficiency of the autism-associated Shank3 gene leads to deficits in synaptic function, social interaction, and social communication

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bozdagi Ozlem

    2010-12-01

    , induced either with θ-burst pairing (TBP or high-frequency stimulation, was impaired in Shank3 heterozygous mice, with no significant change in long-term depression (LTD. In concordance with the LTP results, persistent expansion of spines was observed in control mice after TBP-induced LTP; however, only transient spine expansion was observed in Shank3 heterozygous mice. Male Shank3 heterozygotes displayed less social sniffing and emitted fewer ultrasonic vocalizations during interactions with estrus female mice, as compared to wild-type littermate controls. Conclusions We documented specific deficits in synaptic function and plasticity, along with reduced reciprocal social interactions in Shank3 heterozygous mice. Our results are consistent with altered synaptic development and function in Shank3 haploinsufficiency, highlighting the importance of Shank3 in synaptic function and supporting a link between deficits in synapse function and neurodevelopmental disorders. The reduced glutamatergic transmission that we observed in the Shank3 heterozygous mice represents an interesting therapeutic target in Shank3-haploinsufficiency syndromes.

  16. IκB Kinase Regulates Social Defeat Stress-Induced Synaptic and Behavioral Plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Christoffel, Daniel J; Golden, Sam A.; Dumitriu, Dani; Robison, Alfred J.; Janssen, William G.; Ahn, H. Francisca; Krishnan, Vaishnav; Reyes, Cindy M.; Han, Ming-Hu; Ables, Jessica L; Eisch, Amelia J.; Dietz, David M.; Ferguson, Deveroux; Neve, Rachael L.; Greengard, Paul

    2011-01-01

    The neurobiological underpinnings of mood and anxiety disorders have been linked to the nucleus accumbens (NAc), a region important in processing the rewarding and emotional salience of stimuli. Using chronic social defeat stress, an animal model of mood and anxiety disorders, we investigated whether alterations in synaptic plasticity are responsible for the long-lasting behavioral symptoms induced by this form of stress. We hypothesized that chronic social defeat stress alters synaptic stren...

  17. Upregulation of transmitter release probability improves a conversion of synaptic analogue signals into neuronal digital spikes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Jiandong

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Action potentials at the neurons and graded signals at the synapses are primary codes in the brain. In terms of their functional interaction, the studies were focused on the influence of presynaptic spike patterns on synaptic activities. How the synapse dynamics quantitatively regulates the encoding of postsynaptic digital spikes remains unclear. We investigated this question at unitary glutamatergic synapses on cortical GABAergic neurons, especially the quantitative influences of release probability on synapse dynamics and neuronal encoding. Glutamate release probability and synaptic strength are proportionally upregulated by presynaptic sequential spikes. The upregulation of release probability and the efficiency of probability-driven synaptic facilitation are strengthened by elevating presynaptic spike frequency and Ca2+. The upregulation of release probability improves spike capacity and timing precision at postsynaptic neuron. These results suggest that the upregulation of presynaptic glutamate release facilitates a conversion of synaptic analogue signals into digital spikes in postsynaptic neurons, i.e., a functional compatibility between presynaptic and postsynaptic partners.

  18. Postnatal emergence of synaptic plasticity associated with dynamic adaptation of the respiratory motor pattern.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutschmann, Mathias; Mörschel, Michael; Reuter, Julia; Zhang, Weiqi; Gestreau, Christian; Stettner, Georg M; Kron, Miriam

    2008-12-10

    The shape of the three-phase respiratory motor pattern (inspiration, postinspiration, late expiration) is controlled by a central pattern generator (CPG) located in the ponto-medullary brainstem. Synaptic interactions between and within specific sub-compartments of the CPG are subject of intensive research. This review addresses the neural control of postinspiratory activity as the essential determinant of inspiratory/expiratory phase duration. The generation of the postinspiratory phase depends on synaptic interaction between neurones of the nucleus tractus solitarii (NTS), which relay afferent inputs from pulmonary stretch receptors, and the pontine Kölliker-Fuse nucleus (KF) as integral parts of the CPG. Both regions undergo significant changes during the first three postnatal weeks in rodents. Developmental changes in glutamatergic synaptic functions and its modulation by brain-derived neurotrophic factor may have implications in synaptic plasticity within the NTS/KF axis. We propose that dependent on these developmental changes, the CPG becomes permissive for short- and long-term plasticity associated with environmental, metabolic and behavioural adaptation of the breathing pattern. PMID:18620081

  19. Reduced Glutamatergic Currents and Dendritic Branching of Layer 5 Pyramidal Cells Contribute to Medial Prefrontal Cortex Deactivation in a Rat Model of Neuropathic Pain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Crystle J.; Huang, Mei; Meltzer, Herbert; Martina, Marco

    2016-01-01

    Multiple studies have demonstrated that neuropathic pain is associated with major reorganization in multiple brain areas. In line with the strong emotional salience of chronic pain, involvement of the limbic system appears particularly important. Within the past few years, it has become clear that the functional deactivation of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) is critical for both the cognitive/emotional and the sensory components of pain. However, at the cellular level, details of this deactivation remain in large part unclear. Here we show that 1 week after a peripheral neuropathic injury (Spared Nerve Injury model) pyramidal cells in layer 5 (L5) of the rat medial PFC show responses to excitatory glutamatergic inputs that are reduced by about 50%, as well as reduced frequency of spontaneous excitatory synaptic currents. Additionally, these cells have reduced membrane capacitance and increased input resistance. All these findings are consistent with decreased dendritic length, thus we performed a detailed morphological analysis on a subset of the recorded neurons. We found that the apical dendrites proximal to the soma (excluding the tuft) are shorter and less complex in SNI animals, in agreement with the reduced capacitance and glutamatergic input. Finally, we used in vivo microdialysis to compare the basal concentrations of glutamate and GABA in the PFC of sham and SNI rats and found that ambient glutamate is decreased in SNI rats. Taken together, these data show that impaired glutamatergic transmission contributes to the functional deactivation of the mPFC in neuropathic pain. Additionally, the reduced branching of apical dendrites of L5 pyramidal neurons may underlay the gray matter reduction in chronic pain.

  20. Manipulations of MeCP2 in glutamatergic neurons highlight their contributions to Rett and other neurological disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meng, Xiangling; Wang, Wei; Lu, Hui; He, Ling-Jie; Chen, Wu; Chao, Eugene S; Fiorotto, Marta L; Tang, Bin; Herrera, Jose A; Seymour, Michelle L; Neul, Jeffrey L; Pereira, Fred A; Tang, Jianrong; Xue, Mingshan; Zoghbi, Huda Y

    2016-01-01

    Many postnatal onset neurological disorders such as autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and intellectual disability are thought to arise largely from disruption of excitatory/inhibitory homeostasis. Although mouse models of Rett syndrome (RTT), a postnatal neurological disorder caused by loss-of-function mutations in MECP2, display impaired excitatory neurotransmission, the RTT phenotype can be largely reproduced in mice simply by removing MeCP2 from inhibitory GABAergic neurons. To determine what role excitatory signaling impairment might play in RTT pathogenesis, we generated conditional mouse models with Mecp2 either removed from or expressed solely in glutamatergic neurons. MeCP2 deficiency in glutamatergic neurons leads to early lethality, obesity, tremor, altered anxiety-like behaviors, and impaired acoustic startle response, which is distinct from the phenotype of mice lacking MeCP2 only in inhibitory neurons. These findings reveal a role for excitatory signaling impairment in specific neurobehavioral abnormalities shared by RTT and other postnatal neurological disorders. PMID:27328325

  1. Synaptic dynamics in analog VLSI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartolozzi, Chiara; Indiveri, Giacomo

    2007-10-01

    Synapses are crucial elements for computation and information transfer in both real and artificial neural systems. Recent experimental findings and theoretical models of pulse-based neural networks suggest that synaptic dynamics can play a crucial role for learning neural codes and encoding spatiotemporal spike patterns. Within the context of hardware implementations of pulse-based neural networks, several analog VLSI circuits modeling synaptic functionality have been proposed. We present an overview of previously proposed circuits and describe a novel analog VLSI synaptic circuit suitable for integration in large VLSI spike-based neural systems. The circuit proposed is based on a computational model that fits the real postsynaptic currents with exponentials. We present experimental data showing how the circuit exhibits realistic dynamics and show how it can be connected to additional modules for implementing a wide range of synaptic properties. PMID:17716003

  2. Subventricular zone neural progenitors protect striatal neurons from glutamatergic excitotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butti, Erica; Bacigaluppi, Marco; Rossi, Silvia; Cambiaghi, Marco; Bari, Monica; Cebrian Silla, Arantxa; Brambilla, Elena; Musella, Alessandra; De Ceglia, Roberta; Teneud, Luis; De Chiara, Valentina; D'Adamo, Patrizia; Garcia-Verdugo, Jose Manuel; Comi, Giancarlo; Muzio, Luca; Quattrini, Angelo; Leocani, Letizia; Maccarrone, Mauro; Centonze, Diego; Martino, Gianvito

    2012-11-01

    The functional significance of adult neural stem and progenitor cells in hippocampal-dependent learning and memory has been well documented. Although adult neural stem and progenitor cells in the subventricular zone are known to migrate to, maintain and reorganize the olfactory bulb, it is less clear whether they are functionally required for other processes. Using a conditional transgenic mouse model, selective ablation of adult neural stem and progenitor cells in the subventricular zone induced a dramatic increase in morbidity and mortality of central nervous system disorders characterized by excitotoxicity-induced cell death accompanied by reactive inflammation, such as 4-aminopyridine-induced epilepsy and ischaemic stroke. To test the role of subventricular zone adult neural stem and progenitor cells in protecting central nervous system tissue from glutamatergic excitotoxicity, neurophysiological recordings of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents from single medium spiny striatal neurons were measured on acute brain slices. Indeed, lipopolysaccharide-stimulated, but not unstimulated, subventricular zone adult neural stem and progenitor cells reverted the increased frequency and duration of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents by secreting the endocannabinod arachidonoyl ethanolamide, a molecule that regulates glutamatergic tone through type 1 cannabinoid receptor (CB(1)) binding. In vivo restoration of cannabinoid levels, either by administration of the type 1 cannabinoid receptor agonist HU210 or the inhibitor of the principal catabolic enzyme fatty acid amide hydrolase, URB597, completely reverted the increased morbidity and mortality of adult neural stem and progenitor cell-ablated mice suffering from epilepsy and ischaemic stroke. Our results provide the first evidence that adult neural stem and progenitor cells located within the subventricular zone exert an 'innate' homeostatic regulatory role by protecting striatal neurons from glutamate

  3. Synapses, synaptic activity and intraneuronal Aβ in Alzheimer's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Davide Tampellini

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available β-amyloid peptide accumulation plays a central role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease. Aberrant β-amyloid buildup in the brain has been shown to be present both in the extracellular space and within neurons. Synapses are important targets of β-amyloid, and alterations in synapses better correlate with cognitive impairment than amyloid plaques or neurofibrillary tangles. The link between β-amyloid and synapses became even tighter when it was discovered that β-amyloid accumulates within synapses and that synaptic activity modulates β-amyloid secretion. Currently, a central question in Alzheimer’s disease research is what role synaptic activity plays in the disease process, and how specifically β-amyloid is involved in the synaptic dysfunction that characterizes the disease.

  4. It’s MORe exciting than mu: Crosstalk between mu opioid receptors and glutamatergic transmission in the mesolimbic dopamine system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ElenaHChartoff

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Opioids selective for the G-protein coupled mu opioid receptor (MOR produce potent analgesia and euphoria. Heroin, a synthetic opioid, is considered one of the most addictive substances, and the recent exponential rise in opioid addiction and overdose deaths has made treatment development a national public health priority. Existing medications (methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone, when combined with psychosocial therapies, have proven efficacy in reducing aspects of opioid addiction. Unfortunately, these medications have critical limitations including those associated with opioid agonist therapies (e.g., sustained physiological dependence and opioid withdrawal leading to high relapse rates upon discontinuation, nonadherence to daily dosing, and non-renewal of monthly injection with extended-release naltrexone. Furthermore, current medications fail to ameliorate key aspects of addiction such as powerful conditioned associations that trigger relapse (e.g., cues, stress, the drug itself. Thus, there is a need for developing novel treatments that target neural processes corrupted with chronic opioid use. This requires a basic understanding of molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying effects of opioids on synaptic transmission and plasticity within reward-related neural circuits. The focus of this review is to discuss how crosstalk between MOR-associated G-protein signaling and glutamatergic neurotransmission leads to immediate and long-term effects on emotional states (e.g., euphoria, depression and motivated behavior (e.g., drug-seeking, relapse. Our goal is to integrate findings on how opioids modulate synaptic release of glutamate and postsynaptic transmission via AMPA and NMDA receptors in the nucleus accumbens (NAc and ventral tegmental area (VTA with the clinical (neurobehavioral progression of opioid dependence, as well as to identify gaps in knowledge that can be addressed in future studies.

  5. Cortical circuits, learning, and behavior : Local reorganization of synaptic partners and the expansion of the motor repertoire

    OpenAIRE

    Biane, Jeremy Stanford

    2013-01-01

    Appropriate patterning of synaptic circuitry is vital for proper central nervous system function, and neurons retain a significant capacity for synaptic reorganization throughout life. To better understand how synaptic alterations mediate the development and refinement of complex behavior, this dissertation investigates the neurophysiological and circuit-level changes accompanying 1) the emergence of fine motor behavior during development, and 2) motor skill learning in adulthood. We develope...

  6. Pregnenolone sulfate induces NMDA receptor dependent release of dopamIne from synaptIc termInals in the striatum

    OpenAIRE

    Whittaker, Matthew T.; Gibbs, Terrell T.; Farb, David H.

    2008-01-01

    Neuromodulators that alter the balance between lower-frequency glutamate-mediated excitatory and higher-frequency GABA-mediated inhibitory synaptic transmission are likely to participate in core mechanisms for CNS function and may contribute to the pathophysiology of neurological disorders such as schizophrenia and Alzheimer's disease. Pregnenolone sulfate (PS) modulates both ionotropic glutamate and GABAA receptor mediated synaptic transmission. The enzymes necessary for PS synthesis and deg...

  7. Addictive drugs and plasticity of glutamatergic synapses on dopaminergic neurons: what have we learned from genetic mouse models?

    OpenAIRE

    Jan Rodriguez Parkitna; David Engblom

    2012-01-01

    Drug-induced changes in the functional properties of neurons in the mesolimbic dopaminergic system are attractive candidates for the molecular underpinnings of addiction. A central question in this context has been how drugs of abuse affect synaptic plasticity on dopaminergic cells in the ventral tegmental area. We now know that the intake of addictive drugs is accompanied by a complex sequence of alterations in the properties of excitatory synapses on dopaminergic neurons, mainly driven by s...

  8. Candidate Glutamatergic Neurons in the Visual System of Drosophila

    OpenAIRE

    Shamprasad Varija Raghu; Alexander Borst

    2011-01-01

    The visual system of Drosophila contains approximately 60,000 neurons that are organized in parallel, retinotopically arranged columns. A large number of these neurons have been characterized in great anatomical detail. However, studies providing direct evidence for synaptic signaling and the neurotransmitter used by individual neurons are relatively sparse. Here we present a first layout of neurons in the Drosophila visual system that likely release glutamate as their major neurotransmitter....

  9. A network of autism linked genes stabilizes two pools of synaptic GABA(A) receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tong, Xia-Jing; Hu, Zhitao; Liu, Yu; Anderson, Dorian; Kaplan, Joshua M

    2015-01-01

    Changing receptor abundance at synapses is an important mechanism for regulating synaptic strength. Synapses contain two pools of receptors, immobilized and diffusing receptors, both of which are confined to post-synaptic elements. Here we show that immobile and diffusing GABA(A) receptors are stabilized by distinct synaptic scaffolds at C. elegans neuromuscular junctions. Immobilized GABA(A) receptors are stabilized by binding to FRM-3/EPB4.1 and LIN-2A/CASK. Diffusing GABA(A) receptors are stabilized by the synaptic adhesion molecules Neurexin and Neuroligin. Inhibitory post-synaptic currents are eliminated in double mutants lacking both scaffolds. Neurexin, Neuroligin, and CASK mutations are all linked to Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Our results suggest that these mutations may directly alter inhibitory transmission, which could contribute to the developmental and cognitive deficits observed in ASD. PMID:26575289

  10. Wnt signaling pathway improves central inhibitory synaptic transmission in a mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuenzalida, Marco; Espinoza, Claudia; Pérez, Miguel Ángel; Tapia-Rojas, Cheril; Cuitino, Loreto; Brandan, Enrique; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C

    2016-02-01

    The dystrophin-associated glycoprotein complex (DGC) that connects the cytoskeleton, plasma membrane and the extracellular matrix has been related to the maintenance and stabilization of channels and synaptic receptors, which are both essential for synaptogenesis and synaptic transmission. The dystrophin-deficient (mdx) mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) exhibits a significant reduction in hippocampal GABA efficacy, which may underlie the altered synaptic function and abnormal hippocampal long-term plasticity exhibited by mdx mice. Emerging studies have implicated Wnt signaling in the modulation of synaptic efficacy, neuronal plasticity and cognitive function. We report here that the activation of the non-canonical Wnt-5a pathway and Andrographolide, improves hippocampal mdx GABAergic efficacy by increasing the number of inhibitory synapses and GABA(A) receptors or GABA release. These results indicate that Wnt signaling modulates GABA synaptic efficacy and could be a promising novel target for DMD cognitive therapy. PMID:26626079

  11. Amygdalar glutamatergic neuronal systems play a key role on the hibernating state of hamsters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Facciolo Rosa

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Excitatory transmitting mechanisms are proving to play a critical role on neuronal homeostasis conditions of facultative hibernators such as the Syrian golden hamster. Indeed works have shown that the glutamatergic system of the main olfactory brain station (amygdala is capable of controlling thermoregulatory responses, which are considered vital for the different hibernating states. In the present study the role of amygdalar glutamatergic circuits on non-hibernating (NHIB and hibernating (HIB hamsters were assessed on drinking stimuli and subsequently compared to expression variations of some glutamatergic subtype mRNA levels in limbic areas. For this study the two major glutamatergic antagonists and namely that of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR, 3-(+-2-carboxypiperazin-4-yl-propyl-1-phosphonate (CPP plus that of the acid α-amine-3-hydroxy-5-metil-4-isoxazol-propionic receptor (AMPAR site, cyano-7-nitro-quinoxaline-2,3-dione (CNQX were infused into the basolateral amygdala nucleus. Attempts were made to establish the type of effects evoked by amygdalar glutamatergic cross-talking processes during drinking stimuli, a response that may corroborate their major role at least during some stages of this physiological activity in hibernators. Results From the behavioral results it appears that the two glutamatergic compounds exerted distinct effects. In the first case local infusion of basolateral complexes (BLA with NMDAR antagonist caused very great (p Conclusion We conclude that predominant drinking events evoked by glutamatergic mechanisms, in the presence of prevalently down regulated levels of NR1/2A of some telencephalic and hypothalamic areas appear to constitute an important neuronal switch at least during arousal stage of hibernation. The establishment of the type of glutamatergic subtypes that are linked to successful hibernating states, via drinking stimuli, may have useful bearings toward sleeping disorders.

  12. Amygdalar glutamatergic neuronal systems play a key role on the hibernating state of hamsters

    OpenAIRE

    Facciolo Rosa; Carelli Antonio; Avolio Ennio; Alò Raffaella; Canonaco Marcello

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Background Excitatory transmitting mechanisms are proving to play a critical role on neuronal homeostasis conditions of facultative hibernators such as the Syrian golden hamster. Indeed works have shown that the glutamatergic system of the main olfactory brain station (amygdala) is capable of controlling thermoregulatory responses, which are considered vital for the different hibernating states. In the present study the role of amygdalar glutamatergic circuits on non-hibernating (NHI...

  13. Modulation of excitatory neurotransmission by neuronal/glial signalling molecules: interplay between purinergic and glutamatergic systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köles, László; Kató, Erzsébet; Hanuska, Adrienn; Zádori, Zoltán S; Al-Khrasani, Mahmoud; Zelles, Tibor; Rubini, Patrizia; Illes, Peter

    2016-03-01

    Glutamate is the main excitatory neurotransmitter of the central nervous system (CNS), released both from neurons and glial cells. Acting via ionotropic (NMDA, AMPA, kainate) and metabotropic glutamate receptors, it is critically involved in essential regulatory functions. Disturbances of glutamatergic neurotransmission can be detected in cognitive and neurodegenerative disorders. This paper summarizes the present knowledge on the modulation of glutamate-mediated responses in the CNS. Emphasis will be put on NMDA receptor channels, which are essential executive and integrative elements of the glutamatergic system. This receptor is crucial for proper functioning of neuronal circuits; its hypofunction or overactivation can result in neuronal disturbances and neurotoxicity. Somewhat surprisingly, NMDA receptors are not widely targeted by pharmacotherapy in clinics; their robust activation or inhibition seems to be desirable only in exceptional cases. However, their fine-tuning might provide a promising manipulation to optimize the activity of the glutamatergic system and to restore proper CNS function. This orchestration utilizes several neuromodulators. Besides the classical ones such as dopamine, novel candidates emerged in the last two decades. The purinergic system is a promising possibility to optimize the activity of the glutamatergic system. It exerts not only direct and indirect influences on NMDA receptors but, by modulating glutamatergic transmission, also plays an important role in glia-neuron communication. These purinergic functions will be illustrated mostly by depicting the modulatory role of the purinergic system on glutamatergic transmission in the prefrontal cortex, a CNS area important for attention, memory and learning. PMID:26542977

  14. Towards a quantitative model of the post-synaptic proteome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorokina, Oksana; Sorokin, Anatoly; Armstrong, J Douglas

    2011-10-01

    The postsynaptic compartment of the excitatory glutamatergic synapse contains hundreds of distinct polypeptides with a wide range of functions (signalling, trafficking, cell-adhesion, etc.). Structural dynamics in the post-synaptic density (PSD) are believed to underpin cognitive processes. Although functionally and morphologically diverse, PSD proteins are generally enriched with specific domains, which precisely define the mode of clustering essential for signal processing. We applied a stochastic calculus of domain binding provided by a rule-based modelling approach to formalise the highly combinatorial signalling pathway in the PSD and perform the numerical analysis of the relative distribution of protein complexes and their sizes. We specified the combinatorics of protein interactions in the PSD by rules, taking into account protein domain structure, specific domain affinity and relative protein availability. With this model we interrogated the critical conditions for the protein aggregation into large complexes and distribution of both size and composition. The presented approach extends existing qualitative protein-protein interaction maps by considering the quantitative information for stoichiometry and binding properties for the elements of the network. This results in a more realistic view of the postsynaptic proteome at the molecular level. PMID:21874189

  15. A trans-synaptic nanocolumn aligns neurotransmitter release to receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Ai-Hui; Chen, Haiwen; Li, Tuo P; Metzbower, Sarah R; MacGillavry, Harold D; Blanpied, Thomas A

    2016-08-11

    Synaptic transmission is maintained by a delicate, sub-synaptic molecular architecture, and even mild alterations in synapse structure drive functional changes during experience-dependent plasticity and pathological disorders. Key to this architecture is how the distribution of presynaptic vesicle fusion sites corresponds to the position of receptors in the postsynaptic density. However, while it has long been recognized that this spatial relationship modulates synaptic strength, it has not been precisely described, owing in part to the limited resolution of light microscopy. Using localization microscopy, here we show that key proteins mediating vesicle priming and fusion are mutually co-enriched within nanometre-scale subregions of the presynaptic active zone. Through development of a new method to map vesicle fusion positions within single synapses in cultured rat hippocampal neurons, we find that action-potential-evoked fusion is guided by this protein gradient and occurs preferentially in confined areas with higher local density of Rab3-interacting molecule (RIM) within the active zones. These presynaptic RIM nanoclusters closely align with concentrated postsynaptic receptors and scaffolding proteins, suggesting the existence of a trans-synaptic molecular 'nanocolumn'. Thus, we propose that the nanoarchitecture of the active zone directs action-potential-evoked vesicle fusion to occur preferentially at sites directly opposing postsynaptic receptor-scaffold ensembles. Remarkably, NMDA receptor activation triggered distinct phases of plasticity in which postsynaptic reorganization was followed by trans-synaptic nanoscale realignment. This architecture suggests a simple organizational principle of central nervous system synapses to maintain and modulate synaptic efficiency. PMID:27462810

  16. Altered cortical glutamatergic and GABAergic signal transmission with glial involvement in depression

    OpenAIRE

    Choudary, P. V.; Molnar, M.; Evans, S J; H. Tomita; Li, J.Z.; Vawter, M. P.; Myers, R.M.; Bunney, W. E.; Akil, H; Watson, S. J.; Jones, E. G.

    2005-01-01

    Abnormalities in l-glutamic acid (glutamate) and GABA signal transmission have been postulated to play a role in depression, but little is known about the underlying molecular determinants and neural mechanisms. Microarray analysis of specific areas of cerebral cortex from individuals who had suffered from major depressive disorder demonstrated significant down-regulation of SLC1A2 and SLC1A3, two key members of the glutamate/neutral amino acid transporter protein family, SLC1. Similarly, exp...

  17. Early synaptic dysfunction in Parkinson's disease: Insights from animal models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schirinzi, Tommaso; Madeo, Graziella; Martella, Giuseppina; Maltese, Marta; Picconi, Barbara; Calabresi, Paolo; Pisani, Antonio

    2016-06-01

    The appearance of motor manifestations in Parkinson's disease (PD) is invariably linked to degeneration of nigral dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta. Traditional views on PD neuropathology have been grounded in the assumption that the prime event of neurodegeneration involves neuronal cell bodies with the accumulation of metabolic products. However, this view has recently been challenged by both clinical and experimental evidence. Neuropathological studies in human brain samples and both in vivo and in vitro models support the hypothesis that nigrostriatal synapses may indeed be affected at the earliest stages of the neurodegenerative process. The mechanisms leading to either structural or functional synaptic dysfunction are starting to be elucidated and include dysregulation of axonal transport, impairment of the exocytosis and endocytosis machinery, altered intracellular trafficking, and loss of corticostriatal synaptic plasticity. The aim of this review is to try to integrate different lines of evidence from both pathogenic and genetic animal models that, to different extents, suggest that early synaptic impairment may represent the key event in PD pathogenesis. Understanding the molecular and cellular events underlying such synaptopathy is a fundamental step toward developing specific biomarkers of early dopaminergic dysfunction and, more importantly, designing novel therapies targeting the synaptic apparatus of selective, vulnerable synapses. © 2016 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society. PMID:27193205

  18. Glutamatergic Neurotransmission Links Sensitivity to Volatile Anesthetics with Mitochondrial Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimin, Pavel I; Woods, Christian B; Quintana, Albert; Ramirez, Jan-Marino; Morgan, Philip G; Sedensky, Margaret M

    2016-08-22

    An enigma of modern medicine has persisted for over 150 years. The mechanisms by which volatile anesthetics (VAs) produce their effects (loss of consciousness, analgesia, amnesia, and immobility) remain an unsolved mystery. Many attractive putative molecular targets have failed to produce a significant effect when genetically tested in whole-animal models [1-3]. However, mitochondrial defects increase VA sensitivity in diverse organisms from nematodes to humans [4-6]. Ndufs4 knockout (KO) mice lack a subunit of mitochondrial complex I and are strikingly hypersensitive to VAs yet resistant to the intravenous anesthetic ketamine [7]. The change in VA sensitivity is the largest reported for a mammal. Limiting NDUFS4 loss to a subset of glutamatergic neurons recapitulates the VA hypersensitivity of Ndufs4(KO) mice, while loss in GABAergic or cholinergic neurons does not. Baseline electrophysiologic function of CA1 pyramidal neurons does not differ between Ndufs4(KO) and control mice. Isoflurane concentrations that anesthetize only Ndufs4(KO) mice (0.6%) decreased the frequency of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) only in Ndufs4(KO) CA1 neurons, while concentrations effective in control mice (1.2%) decreased sEPSC frequencies in both control and Ndufs4(KO) CA1 pyramidal cells. Spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSCs) were not differentially affected between genotypes. The effects of isoflurane were similar on evoked field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) and paired pulse facilitation (PPF) in KO and control hippocampal slices. We propose that CA1 presynaptic excitatory neurotransmission is hypersensitive to isoflurane in Ndufs4(KO) mice due to the inhibition of pre-existing reduced complex I function, reaching a critical reduction that can no longer meet metabolic demands. PMID:27498564

  19. Glutamatergic dysbalance and oxidative stress in in vivo and in vitro models of psychosis based on chronic NMDA receptor antagonism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Just Genius

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The psychotomimetic effects of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA receptor antagonists in healthy humans and their tendency to aggravate psychotic symptoms in schizophrenic patients have promoted the notion of altered glutamatergic neurotransmission in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. METHODS: The NMDA-receptor antagonist MK-801 was chronically administered to rats (0.02 mg/kg intraperitoneally for 14 days. In one subgroup the antipsychotic haloperidol (1 mg/kg was employed as a rescue therapy. Glutamate distribution and 3-NT (3-nitrotyrosine as a marker of oxidative stress were assessed by immunohistochemistry in tissue sections. In parallel, the effects of MK-801 and haloperidol were investigated in primary embryonal hippocampal cell cultures from rats. RESULTS: Chronic NMDA-R antagonism led to a marked increase of intracellular glutamate in the hippocampus (126.1 +/- 10.4% S.E.M of control; p=0.037, while 3-NT staining intensity remained unaltered. No differences were observed in extrahippocampal brain regions. Essentially these findings could be reproduced in vitro. CONCLUSION: The combined in vivo and in vitro strategy allowed us to assess the implications of disturbed glutamate metabolism for the occurrence of oxidative stress and to investigate the effects of antipsychotics. Our data suggest that oxidative stress plays a minor role in this model than previously suggested. The same applies to apoptosis. Moreover, the effect of haloperidol seems to be mediated through yet unidentified mechanisms, unrelated to D2-antagonism. These convergent lines of evidence indicate that further research should be focused on the glutamatergic system and that our animal model may provide a tool to explore the biology of schizophrenia.

  20. Subregional Expression of Hippocampal Glutamatergic and GABAergic Genes in F344 Rats with Social Isolation after Weaning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwata, Hisaya; Yamamuro, Yutaka

    2016-02-01

    Many studies have shown that postweaning social isolation (pwSI) alters various behavioral phenotypes, including hippocampusdependent tasks. Here, we report the comprehensive analysis of the expression of glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmissionrelated genes in the distinct hippocampal subregions of pwSI rats. Male F344 rats (age, 4 wk) experienced either pwSI or group housing (controls). At 7 wk of age, the hippocampus of each rat was removed and laser-microdissected into the CA1 and CA3 layers of pyramidal cells and the granule cell layer of the dentate gyrus. Subsequently, the expression of glutamatergic- and GABAergic- related genes was analyzed by quantitative RT-PCR. In the CA1 and CA3 pyramidal cell layers, 18 of 24 glutamate receptor subunit genes were at least 1.5-fold increased in expression after pwSI. In particular, the expression of several N-methyl-D-aspartate and kainate receptors (for example, Grin2a in CA1, Grik4 in CA3) was significantly increased after pwSI. In contrast, pwSI tended to decrease the expression of GABAA receptor subunit genes, and Gabra1, Gabra2, Gabra4, Gabra5, Gabrb2, Gabrg1, and Gabrg2 were all significantly decreased in expression compared with the levels in the group-housed rats. These results indicate a subregion- specific increase of glutamate receptors and reduction of GABAA receptors, suggesting that the hippocampal circuits of pwSI rats may be in more excitable states than those of group-housed rats. PMID:26884404

  1. Glutamatergic system dysfunction in schizophrenia. A proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H MRS) study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The present study was performed to determine whether there are any differences in metabolite levels as measured by 1 H MRS between chronic and first-episode schizophrenic patients. 17 patients with the diagnosis of chronic schizophrenia and 31 patients with first-episode schizophrenia (ICD-10) were included into the study. The patients were assessed by means of PANSS, CGI and Calgary scales.We also examined 13 healthy persons as control group. MRI and MRS procedures: Proton resonance spectroscopy was performed on a 1,5 MR scanner, PRESS sequence, TR=1500 ms, TE=35 ms, number of repetition=192 and included suppression of water by MOIST sequence. Each volume element (voxel) had dimension of 2x2x2 cm and was localised in the left frontal lobe, in the left temporal lobe and in left thalamus. Complex containing glutamine (Gln), glutamate (Glu) and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) was measured. Ratios of metabolite to creatine and unsuppressed water signal were analysed. We didn't find any significant differences in Glx levels between chronic and first-episode patients and between chronic patients and controls in all studied regions.In the left temporal lobe Glx/Cr ratio was significantly higher in first-episode patients in comparison to controls.We observed significant positive correlation between Glx/Cr level in the left temporal lobe and CGI and PANSS-Negative scores, and negative correlation between Glx/H20 level in the left temporal lobe and PANSS-Positive score. Increased Glx level in the left temporal lobe in first-episode patients suggest that altered glutamatergic activity in this region is present at the onset of disease and doesn't progress over time. (author)

  2. Quantitative synaptic alterations in human brain during normal aging and in patients with Alzheimer disease%正常增龄及阿尔茨海默病患者脑组织中突触密度改变的定量观察

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    许丹; 胡亚卓; 桂秋萍; 朱明伟; 张红红; 王鲁宁

    2005-01-01

    果:纳入分析脑标本共34例,全部进入分析结果.①光镜下可见突触素免疫反应阳性物质呈大小不等的颗粒,弥散分布于脑皮质、壳核及海马灰质神经毡内,神经细胞、胶质细胞胞体内及血管穿行部位和白质无阳性表达.额叶皮质Ⅱ,Ⅲ层较其他各层密度高,枕叶皮质Ⅳ层密度较其他各层高.②正常老年脑额叶、枕叶、壳核及海马CA3区突触素吸光度与年龄呈负相关(r=-0.688,-0 592,-0458,-0619,P=0.000,0.001,0.014,0.000).③阿尔茨海默病患者海马CA3区突触素吸光度低于正常>75岁病例(0.031 3±0.003 0,0.040 7±0.005 3,Z=-2.997,P=0.001).结论:①脑老化过程中额叶、枕叶及脑海马CA3区与壳核突触密度随年龄增加而下降,尤其是脑额叶、枕叶及脑海马CA3区的这种变化与年龄的相关性更为显著.②阿尔茨海默病患者突触密度较正常增龄病例有所降低,其认知功能减退可能与突触脱失有关.③尸检取材操作均在死亡后8~72 h完成,甲醛固定时间均在6周以上,避免了对突触素稳定性数据的影响.%BACKGROUND: Synaptic density, a key index of structure and function of brain tissues, is related to cognitive function. Synaptic loss occurs during human brain aging and in Alzheimer disease (AD), inducing the changes of synaptic density.OBJECTIVE: To observe quantitative synaptic alterations in human brain and changes of synaptic density in different parts during normal aging so as to compare them with those of AD patients.DESIGN: Sampling survey.SETTING: Senile Neurological Department of General Hospital of Chinese PLA.PARTICIPANTS: Pathological data were selected from General Hospital of Chinese PLA from June 1996 to December 2002. Inclusion criteria: had no major nervous system diseases and neuropathological changes. Brain tissues of 28 corpses in normal aging group, 23 males and 5 females aged 23-100 years with an average of (65±22.8) years, were obtained at autopsy.All corpses were divided into

  3. Astrocyte membrane properties are altered in a rat model of developmental cortical malformation but single-cell astrocytic glutamate uptake is robust.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, Elizabeth; Danbolt, Niels Christian; Dulla, Chris G

    2016-05-01

    the FL cortex, synaptically-evoked, but not UV uncaging-evoked TCs, were larger in amplitude. Additionally, we found that the amount of electrical stimulation required to evoke a synaptic TC was significantly reduced in the FL cortex. Both of these findings are consistent with increased excitatory input to the FL cortex, but not with changes in how individual astrocytes remove glutamate. Taken together, our results demonstrate that the maturation of astrocyte membrane resistance, local distribution of glutamate transporters, and glutamatergic input to the cortex are altered in the FL model, but that single-cell astrocytic glutamate uptake is robust. PMID:26875663

  4. Enhancement of inorganic Martian dust simulant with carbon component and its effects on key characteristics of glutamatergic neurotransmission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borisova, Tatiana; Krisanova, Natalia; Nazarova, Anastasiya; Borysov, Arseniy; Pastukhov, Artem; Pozdnyakova, Natalia; Dudarenko, Marina

    2016-07-01

    Evidence on the past existence of subsurface organic-bearing fluids on Mars was recently achieved basing on the investigation of organic carbon from the Tissint Martian meteorite (Lin et al., 2014). Tremendous amount of meteorites containing abundant carbon and carbon-enriched dust particles have reached the Earth daily (Pizzarello and Shock 2010). National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences/National Institute of Health panel of research scientists revealed recently that accumulating evidences suggest that nano-sized air pollution may have a significant impact on central nervous system in health and disease (Block et al., Neurotoxicology, 2012). During inhalation, nano-/microsized particles are efficiently deposited in nasal, tracheobronchial, and alveolar regions and can be transported to the central nervous system (Oberdorster et al., 2004). Based on above facts, the aims of this study were: 1) to upgrade inorganic Martian dust stimulant derived from volcanic ash (JSC-1a/JSC, ORBITEC Orbital Technologies Corporation, Madison, Wisconsin) by the addition of carbon components, that is, nanodiamonds; 2) to analyse acute effects of upgraded stimulant on the key characteristic of synaptic neurotransmission and to compare its effects with those of inorganic dust and carbon components per se. Acute administration of carbon-containing Martian dust analogue resulted in a significant decrease in Na+-dependent uptake of L-[14C]glutamate that is the major excitatory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system (CNS). The ambient level of the neurotransmitter in the preparation of isolated rat brain nerve terminals increased in the presence of carbon-contained Martian dust analogue. This fact indicated that carbon component of native Martian dust can have deleterious effects on extracellular glutamate homeostasis in the CNS, and so glutamatergic neurtransmission.

  5. Realistic modelling of receptor activation in hippocampal excitatory synapses: analysis of multivesicular release, release location, temperature and synaptic cross-talk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boucher, Jérôme; Kröger, Helmut; Sík, Attila

    2010-07-01

    Chemically mediated synaptic transmission results from fusion of synaptic vesicles with the presynaptic plasma membrane, subsequent release of the vesicular content into the cleft and binding to postsynaptic receptors. Previous modelling studies of excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate were based on simplified geometries failing to account for the biologically realistic synaptic environment, in particular, the presence of astrocytes, the geometry of extracellular space, and the neurotransmitter uptake mechanism. Using 3-dimensional reconstructions of hippocampal glutamatergic synapses including the surrounding astrocytic processes we have developed a biologically realistic model to analyse receptor activation in different conditions. We used the finite element method to simulate glutamate release, analyse glutamate diffusion following single and multiple vesicle release and binding at the postsynaptic site to AMPA and NMDA receptors. We demonstrate that: (1) the transmitter diffusion is highly temperature-sensitive; (2) release conditions and geometry more specifically affect AMPARs than NMDARs; (3) the sensitivities of AMPARs and NMDARs to simultaneous vesicular release are different; (4) in the case of multivesicle neurotransmitter release with variable delays, the binding of glutamate to AMPARs is additive up to 1 ms after the release, then becomes independent, but to NMDARs the binding is additive up to 33 ms; (5) the number of AMPARs varies more than the number of NMDRs in response to the input firing patterns; (6) the presence of astrocytes effectively blocks synaptic cross-talk; and (7) synaptic cross-talk, mediated by NMDARs but not AMPARs, is only possible after quasi-simultaneous multivesicular release at physiological temperature (35 degrees C) without intervening astrocytes, but not at 25 degrees C. Our simulations demonstrate the importance of temperature and ultrastructural synaptic environment in synaptic transmission and synaptic cross-talk. PMID

  6. Open Syntaxin Docks Synaptic Vesicles

    OpenAIRE

    Marc Hammarlund; Mark T Palfreyman; Shigeki Watanabe; Shawn Olsen; Erik M. Jorgensen

    2007-01-01

    Author Summary Like Olympic swimmers crouched on their starting blocks, synaptic vesicles prepare for fusion with the neuronal plasma membrane long before the starting gun fires. This preparation enables vesicles to fuse rapidly, synchronously, and in the correct place when the signal finally arrives. A well-known but poorly understood part of vesicle preparation is docking, in which vesicles prepare for release by attaching to the plasma membrane at the eventual site of release. Here, we out...

  7. Perinatal exposure to bisphenol-A inhibits synaptogenesis and affects the synaptic morphological development in offspring male mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiaohong; Xie, Lingdan; Hong, Xing; Ruan, Qin; Lu, Hongfei; Zhang, Qin; Zhang, Guangxia; Liu, Xingyi

    2013-05-01

    Our previous study indicated that perinatal exposure to low-dose BPA, one of the most common environmental endocrine disrupters, alters behavioral development in offspring mice. Given that synaptic structure of the hippocampus is closely related to behaviors, in the present study, we examined the effects of perinatal exposure to BPA (0.04, 0.4, and 4.0 mg kg(-1) day(-1)) on the synaptic density and the synaptic structural modification of pyramidal cells in hippocampus region CA1 and the expressions of synaptic proteins such as synapsin I and PSD-95 and glutamate NMDA and AMPA receptors in male offspring mice on postnatal day (PND) 14, 21, and 56. The results of electron microscope measurement showed that BPA significantly reduced the numeric synaptic density and altered the structural modification of synaptic interface of pyramidal cells with the enlarged synaptic cleft, the shortened active zone, and the thinned postsynaptic density (PSD) on PND 14, 21, and 56 and the increased curvature of synaptic interface on PND 14 and 21. Further analyses of Western blot indicated that BPA markedly reduced the levels of synapsin I and PSD-95 on PND 14, 21, and 56 and down-regulated NMDA receptor subunit NR1 and AMPA receptor subunit GluR1 during development and young adulthood. These results suggest that perinatal exposure to low level of BPA inhibits synaptogenesis and affects synaptic structural modification after birth. The reduced expressions of synaptic proteins synapsin I and PSD-95 and glutamate NMDA and AMPA receptors may be involved in the negative changes in the synaptic plasticity. PMID:23490186

  8. Adolescent Alcohol Exposure: Burden of Epigenetic Reprogramming, Synaptic Remodeling, and Adult Psychopathology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kyzar, Evan J.; Floreani, Christina; Teppen, Tara L.; Pandey, Subhash C.

    2016-01-01

    Adolescence represents a crucial phase of synaptic maturation characterized by molecular changes in the developing brain that shape normal behavioral patterns. Epigenetic mechanisms play an important role in these neuromaturation processes. Perturbations of normal epigenetic programming during adolescence by ethanol can disrupt these molecular events, leading to synaptic remodeling and abnormal adult behaviors. Repeated exposure to binge levels of alcohol increases the risk for alcohol use disorder (AUD) and comorbid psychopathology including anxiety in adulthood. Recent studies in the field clearly suggest that adolescent alcohol exposure causes widespread and persistent changes in epigenetic, neurotrophic, and neuroimmune pathways in the brain. These changes are manifested by altered synaptic remodeling and neurogenesis in key brain regions leading to adult psychopathology such as anxiety and alcoholism. This review details the molecular mechanisms underlying adolescent alcohol exposure-induced changes in synaptic plasticity and the development of alcohol addiction-related phenotypes in adulthood. PMID:27303256

  9. Adolescent alcohol exposure: Burden of epigenetic reprogramming, synaptic remodeling, and adult psychopathology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evan J Kyzar

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Adolescence represents a crucial phase of synaptic maturation characterized by molecular changes in the developing brain that shape normal behavioral patterns. Epigenetic mechanisms play an important role in these neuromaturation processes. Perturbations of normal epigenetic programming during adolescence by ethanol can delay these molecular events, leading to synaptic remodeling and abnormal adult behaviors. Repeated exposure to binge levels of alcohol increases the risk for alcohol use disorder (AUD and comorbid psychopathology including anxiety in adulthood. Recent studies in the field clearly suggest that adolescent alcohol exposure causes widespread and persistent changes in epigenetic, neurotrophic, and neuroimmune pathways in the brain. These changes are manifested by altered synaptic remodeling and neurogenesis in key brain regions leading to adult psychopathology such as anxiety and alcoholism. This review details the molecular mechanisms underlying adolescent alcohol exposure-induced changes in synaptic plasticity and the development of alcohol addiction-related phenotypes in adulthood.

  10. A2A adenosine receptor antagonism enhances synaptic and motor effects of cocaine via CB1 cannabinoid receptor activation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Tozzi

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Cocaine increases the level of endogenous dopamine (DA in the striatum by blocking the DA transporter. Endogenous DA modulates glutamatergic inputs to striatal neurons and this modulation influences motor activity. Since D2 DA and A2A-adenosine receptors (A2A-Rs have antagonistic effects on striatal neurons, drugs targeting adenosine receptors such as caffeine-like compounds, could enhance psychomotor stimulant effects of cocaine. In this study, we analyzed the electrophysiological effects of cocaine and A2A-Rs antagonists in striatal slices and the motor effects produced by this pharmacological modulation in rodents. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Concomitant administration of cocaine and A2A-Rs antagonists reduced glutamatergic synaptic transmission in striatal spiny neurons while these drugs failed to produce this effect when given in isolation. This inhibitory effect was dependent on the activation of D2-like receptors and the release of endocannabinoids since it was prevented by L-sulpiride and reduced by a CB1 receptor antagonist. Combined application of cocaine and A2A-R antagonists also reduced the firing frequency of striatal cholinergic interneurons suggesting that changes in cholinergic tone might contribute to this synaptic modulation. Finally, A2A-Rs antagonists, in the presence of a sub-threshold dose of cocaine, enhanced locomotion and, in line with the electrophysiological experiments, this enhanced activity required activation of D2-like and CB1 receptors. CONCLUSIONS: The present study provides a possible synaptic mechanism explaining how caffeine-like compounds could enhance psychomotor stimulant effects of cocaine.

  11. Addictive drugs and plasticity of glutamatergic synapses on dopaminergic neurons: what have we learned from genetic mouse models?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Rodriguez Parkitna

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Drug-induced changes in the functional properties of neurons in the mesolimbic dopaminergic system are attractive candidates for the molecular underpinnings of addiction. A central question in this context has been how drugs of abuse affect synaptic plasticity on dopaminergic cells in the ventral tegmental area. We now know that the intake of addictive drugs is accompanied by a complex sequence of alterations in the properties of excitatory synapses on dopaminergic neurons, mainly driven by signaling and redistribution of NMDA- and AMPA-receptors. It has, however, been unclear how these molecular changes are related to the behavioral effects of addictive drugs. Recently, new genetic tools have permitted researchers to perform genetic intervention with plasticity-related molecules selectively in dopaminergic cells and to subsequently study the behaviors of genetically modified mice. These studies have started to reveal how plasticity and drug-induced behavior are connected as well as what role plasticity in dopaminergic cells may have in general reward learning. The findings thus far show that there is not a one-to-one relation between plastic events and specific behaviors and that the early responses to drugs of abuse are to a large extent independent of the types of synaptic plasticity so far targeted. In contrast, plasticity in dopaminergic cells indeed is an important regulator of the persistence of behaviors driven by drug associations, making synaptic plasticity in dopaminergic cells an important field of study for understanding the mechanisms behind relapse.

  12. Astroglial networks scale synaptic activity and plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Pannasch, Ulrike; Vargová, Lydia; Reingruber, Jürgen; Ezan, Pascal; Holcman, David; Giaume, Christian; Syková, Eva; Rouach, Nathalie

    2011-01-01

    Astrocytes dynamically interact with neurons to regulate synaptic transmission. Although the gap junction proteins connexin 30 (Cx30) and connexin 43 (Cx43) mediate the extensive network organization of astrocytes, their role in synaptic physiology is unknown. Here we show, by inactivating Cx30 and Cx43 genes, that astroglial networks tone down hippocampal synaptic transmission in CA1 pyramidal neurons. Gap junctional networking facilitates extracellular glutamate and potassium removal during...

  13. Regulation of synaptic connectivity by glia

    OpenAIRE

    Eroglu, Cagla; Barres, Ben A

    2010-01-01

    The human brain contains more than 100 trillion (1014) synaptic connections, which form all of its neural circuits. Neuroscientists have long been interested in how this complex synaptic web is weaved during development and remodelled during learning and disease. Recent studies have uncovered that glial cells are important regulators of synaptic connectivity. These cells are far more active than was previously thought and are powerful controllers of synapse formation, function, plasticity and...

  14. Extracellular ATP Hydrolysis Inhibits Synaptic Transmission by Increasing pH Buffering in the Synaptic Cleft

    OpenAIRE

    Vroman, Rozan; Klaassen, Lauw J.; Howlett, Marcus H C; Cenedese, Valentina; Klooster, Jan; Sjoerdsma, Trijntje; Kamermans, Maarten

    2014-01-01

    A slow mechanism of retinal synaptic inhibition involves hydrolysis of ATP released from pannexin 1 channels (from the tips of horizontal cell dendrites); the resulting protons and phosphates acidify the synaptic cleft, which inhibits neurotransmitter release.

  15. Prefrontal synaptic markers of cocaine addiction-like behavior in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasanetz, F; Lafourcade, M; Deroche-Gamonet, V; Revest, J-M; Berson, N; Balado, E; Fiancette, J-F; Renault, P; Piazza, P-V; Manzoni, O J

    2013-06-01

    Defining the drug-induced neuroadaptations specifically associated with the behavioral manifestation of addiction is a daunting task. To address this issue, we used a behavioral model that differentiates rats controlling their drug use (Non-Addict-like) from rats undergoing transition to addiction (Addict-like). Dysfunctions in prefrontal cortex (PFC) synaptic circuits are thought to be responsible for the loss of control over drug taking that characterizes addicted individuals. Here, we studied the synaptic alterations in prelimbic PFC (pPFC) circuits associated with transition to addiction. We discovered that some of the changes induced by cocaine self-administration (SA), such as the impairment of the endocannabinoid-mediated long-term synaptic depression (eCB-LTD) was similarly abolished in Non-Addict- and Addict-like rats and thus unrelated to transition to addiction. In contrast, metabotropic glutamate receptor 2/3-mediated LTD (mGluR2/3-LTD) was specifically suppressed in Addict-like rats, which also show a concomitant postsynaptic plasticity expressed as a change in the relative contribution of AMPAR and NMDAR to basal glutamate-mediated synaptic transmission. Addiction-associated synaptic alterations in the pPFC were not fully developed at early stages of cocaine SA, when addiction-like behaviors are still absent, suggesting that pathological behaviors appear once the pPFC is compromised. These data identify specific synaptic impairments in the pPFC associated with addiction and support the idea that alterations of synaptic plasticity are core markers of drug dependence. PMID:22584869

  16. Differential expression of metabotropic glutamate and GABAB receptors at neocortical glutamatergic and GABAergic axon terminals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiziana Bonifacino

    2015-09-01

    Overall, these findings indicate that mGluR1α, mGluR5, mGluR2/3, mGluR7 and GABAB1 expression differ significantly between glutamatergic and GABAergic axon terminals, and that the robust expression of heteroreceptors may contribute to the homeostatic regulation of the balance between excitation and inhibition.

  17. Glutamatergic Effects of Divalproex in Adolescents with Mania: A Proton Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strawn, Jeffrey R.; Patel, Nick C.; Chu, Wen-Jang; Lee, Jing-Huei; Adler, Caleb M.; Kim, Mi Jung; Bryan, Holly S.; Alfieri, David C.; Welge, Jeffrey A.; Blom, Thomas J.; Nandagopal, Jayasree J.; Strakowski, Stephen M.; DelBello, Melissa P.

    2012-01-01

    Objectives: This study used proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy ([superscript 1]H MRS) to evaluate the in vivo effects of extended-release divalproex sodium on the glutamatergic system in adolescents with bipolar disorder, and to identify baseline neurochemical predictors of clinical remission. Method: Adolescents with bipolar disorder who were…

  18. Cannabinoid Type 1 Receptors Transiently Silence Glutamatergic Nerve Terminals of Cultured Cerebellar Granule Cells

    OpenAIRE

    Ramírez-Franco, Jorge; Bartolomé-Martín, David; Alonso, Beatris; Torres, Magdalena; Sánchez-Prieto, José

    2014-01-01

    Cannabinoid receptors are the most abundant G protein-coupled receptors in the brain and they mediate retrograde short-term inhibition of neurotransmitter release, as well as long-term depression of synaptic transmission at many excitatory synapses. The induction of presynaptically silent synapses is a means of modulating synaptic strength, which is important for synaptic plasticity. Persistent activation of cannabinoid type 1 receptors (CB1Rs) mutes GABAergic terminals, although it is unclea...

  19. Cellular and molecular mechanisms of chemical synaptic transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millhorn, D E; Bayliss, D A; Erickson, J T; Gallman, E A; Szymeczek, C L; Czyzyk-Krzeska, M; Dean, J B

    1989-12-01

    During the last decade much progress has been made in understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which nerve cells communicate with each other and nonneural (e.g., muscle) target tissue. This review is intended to provide the reader with an account of this work. We begin with an historical overview of research on cell-to-cell communication and then discuss recent developments that, in some instances, have led to dramatic changes in the concept of synaptic transmission. For instance, the finding that single neurons often contain multiple messengers (i.e., neurotransmitters) invalidated the long-held theory (i.e., Dale's Law) that individual neurons contain and release one and only one type of neurotransmitter. Moreover, the last decade witnessed the inclusion of an entire group of compounds, the neuropeptides, as messenger molecules. Enormous progress has also been made in elucidating postsynaptic receptor complexes and biochemical intermediaries involved in synaptic transmission. Here the development of recombinant DNA technology has made it possible to clone and determine the molecular structure for a number of receptors. This information has been used to gain insight into how these receptors function either as a ligand-gated channel or as a G protein-linked ligand recognition molecule. Perhaps the most progress made during this era was in understanding the molecular linkage of G protein-linked receptors to intramembranous and cytoplasmic macromolecules involved in signal amplification and transduction. We conclude with a brief discussion of how synaptic transmission leads to immediate alterations in the electrical activity and, in some cases, to a change in phenotype by altering gene expression. These alterations in cellular behavior are believed to be mediated by phosphoproteins, the final biochemical product of signal transduction. PMID:2575357

  20. Evolution of the aging brain transcriptome and synaptic regulation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick M Loerch

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

  1. Wnts in adult brain: from synaptic plasticity to cognitive deficiencies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliva, Carolina A.; Vargas, Jessica Y.; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C.

    2013-01-01

    During development of the central nervous system the Wnt signaling pathway has been implicated in a wide spectrum of physiological processes, including neuronal connectivity and synapse formation. Wnt proteins and components of the Wnt pathway are expressed in the brain since early development to the adult life, however, little is known about its role in mature synapses. Here, we review evidences indicating that Wnt proteins participate in the remodeling of pre- and post-synaptic regions, thus modulating synaptic function. We include the most recent data in the literature showing that Wnts are constantly released in the brain to maintain the basal neural activity. Also, we review the evidences that involve components of the Wnt pathway in the development of neurological and mental disorders, including a special emphasis on in vivo studies that relate behavioral abnormalities to deficiencies in Wnt signaling. Finally, we include the evidences that support a neuroprotective role of Wnt proteins in Alzheimer’s disease. We postulate that deregulation in Wnt signaling might have a fundamental role in the origin of neurological diseases, by altering the synaptic function at stages where the phenotype is not yet established but when the cognitive decline starts. PMID:24348327

  2. Amyloid-β depresses excitatory cholinergic synaptic transmission in Drosophila

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Liqun Fang; Jingjing Duan; Dongzhi Ran; Zihao Fan; Ying Yan; Naya Huang; Huaiyu Gu; Yulan Zhu

    2012-01-01

    Objective Decline,disruption,or alterations of nicotinic cholinergic mechanisms contribute to cognitive dysfunctions like Alzheimer's disease (AD).Although amyloid-β (Aβ) aggregation is a pathological hallmark of AD,the mechanisms by which Aβ peptides modulate cholinergic synaptic transmission and memory loss remain obscure.This study was aimed to investigate the potential synaptic modulation by Aβ of the cholinergic synapses between olfactory receptor neurons and projection neurons (PNs) in the olfactory lobe of the fruit fly.Methods Cholinergic spontaneous and miniature excitatory postsynaptic current (mEPSC) were recorded with whole-cell patch clamp from PNs in Drosophila AD models expressing Aβ40,Aβ42,or Aβ42Arc peptides in neural tissue.Results In fly pupae (2 days before eclosion),overexpression of Aβ42 or Aβ42Arc,but not Aβ40,led to a significant decrease of mEPSC frequency,while overexpression of Aβ40,Aβ42,or Aβ42Arc had no significant effect on mEPSC amplitude.In contrast,Pavlovian olfactory associative learning and lifespan assays showed that both short-term memory and lifespan were decreased in the Drosophila models expressing Aβ40,Aβ42,or Aβ42Arc.Conclusion Both electrophysiological and behavioral results showed an effect of Aβ peptide on cholinergic synaptic transmission and suggest a possible mechanism by which Aβ peptides cause cholinergic neuron degeneration and the consequent memory loss.

  3. Kynurenic acid inhibits glutamatergic transmission to CA1 pyramidal neurons via α7 nAChR-dependent and -independent mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, Jyotirmoy; Alkondon, Manickavasagom; Albuquerque, Edson X

    2012-10-15

    Glutamatergic hypofunction and elevated levels of kynurenic acid (KYNA) in the brain are common features of patients with schizophrenia. In vivo studies indicate that in the hippocampus KYNA decreases glutamate levels, presumably via inhibition of α7 nicotinic receptors (nAChRs). Here we tested the hypothesis that basal synaptic glutamate activity in the hippocampus is regulated by tonically active α7 nAChRs and is sensitive to inhibition by KYNA. To this end, spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs), sensitive to AMPA receptor antagonist CNQX (10 μM), were recorded from CA1 pyramidal neurons at -70 mV in rat hippocampal slices. The α7 nAChR antagonists α-bungarotoxin (α-BGT, 100 nM) and methyllycaconitine (MLA, 1-50 nM), and the NMDA receptor antagonist 2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid (APV, 50 μM) reduced the frequency of EPSCs. MLA and α-BGT had no effect on miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs). The effect of MLA decreased in the presence of APV (50 μM), with 1 nM MLA becoming completely ineffective. KYNA (1-20 μM) suppressed the frequency of EPSCs, without affecting mEPSCs. The effect of KYNA decreased in the presence of MLA (1 nM) or α-BGT (100 nM), with 1 μM KYNA being devoid of any effect. In the presence of both MLA (10 nM) and APV (50 μM) higher KYNA concentrations (5-20 μM) still reduced the frequency of EPSCs. These results suggest that basal synaptic glutamate activity in CA1 pyramidal neurons is maintained in part by tonically active α7 nAChRs and NMDA receptors and is inhibited by micromolar concentrations of KYNA, acting via α7 nAChR-dependent and -independent mechanisms. PMID:22889930

  4. The Impact of Stimulation Induced Short Term Synaptic Plasticity on Firing Patterns in the Globus Pallidus of the Rat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jenia eBugaysen

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Electrical stimulation in the globus pallidus (GP leads to complex modulations of neuronal activity in the stimulated nucleus. Multiple in-vivo studies have demonstrated the modulation of both firing rates and patterns during and immediately following the GP stimulation. Previous in-vitro studies, together with computational studies, have suggested the involvement of short-term synaptic plasticity (STP during the stimulation. The aim of the current study was to explore in-vitro the effects of STP on neuronal activity of GP neurons during local repetitive stimulation. We recorded synaptic potentials and assessed the modulations of spontaneous firing in a postsynaptic neuron in acute brain slices via a whole-cell pipette. Low-frequency repetitive stimulation locked the firing of the neuron to the stimulus. However, high-frequency repetitive stimulation in the GP generated a biphasic modulation of the firing frequency consisting of inhibitory and excitatory phases. Using blockers of synaptic transmission, we show that GABAergic synapses mediated the inhibitory and glutamatergic synapses the excitatory part of the response. Furthermore, we report that at high stimulation frequencies both types of synapses undergo short-term depression leading to a time dependent modulation of the neuronal firing. These findings indicate that STP modulates the dynamic responses of pallidal activity during electrical stimulation, and may contribute to a better understanding of the mechanism underlying deep brain stimulation (DBS like protocols.

  5. Truncated tau deregulates synaptic markers in rat model for human tauopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norbert Zilka

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Synaptic failure and neurofibrillary degeneration are two major neuropathological substrates of cognitive dysfunction in Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Only a few studies have demonstrated a direct relationship between these two AD hallmarks. To investigate tau mediated synaptic injury we used rat model of tauopathy that develops extensive neurofibrillary pathology in the cortex. Using fractionation of cortical synapses, we identified an increase in endogenous rat tau isoforms in presynaptic compartment, and their mis-sorting to the postsynaptic density. Truncated transgenic tau was distributed in both compartments exhibiting specific phospho-pattern that was characteristic for each synaptic compartment. In the presynaptic compartment, truncated tau was associated with impairment of dynamic stability of microtubules which could be responsible for reduction of synaptic vesicles. In the postsynaptic density, truncated tau lowered the levels of neurofilaments. Truncated tau also significantly decreased the synaptic levels of Aβ40 but not Aβ42. These data show that truncated tau differentially deregulates synaptic proteome in pre- and postsynaptic compartments. Importantly, we show that alteration of Aβ can arise downstream of truncated tau pathology.

  6. Kidins220/ARMS Is a Novel Modulator of Short-Term Synaptic Plasticity in Hippocampal GABAergic Neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Joachim Scholz-Starke; Fabrizia Cesca; Giampietro Schiavo; Fabio Benfenati; Pietro Baldelli

    2012-01-01

    Kidins220 (Kinase D interacting substrate of 220 kDa)/ARMS (Ankyrin Repeat-rich Membrane Spanning) is a scaffold protein highly expressed in the nervous system. Previous work on neurons with altered Kidins220/ARMS expression suggested that this protein plays multiple roles in synaptic function. In this study, we analyzed the effects of Kidins220/ARMS ablation on basal synaptic transmission and on a variety of short-term plasticity paradigms in both excitatory and inhibitory synapses using a r...

  7. A Mathematical Model of Tripartite Synapse: Astrocyte Induced Synaptic Plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Tewari, Shivendra; Majumdar, Kaushik

    2011-01-01

    In this paper we present a biologically detailed mathematical model of tripartite synapses, where astrocytes modulate short-term synaptic plasticity. The model consists of a pre-synaptic bouton, a post-synaptic dendritic spine-head, a synaptic cleft and a peri-synaptic astrocyte controlling Ca2+ dynamics inside the synaptic bouton. This in turn controls glutamate release dynamics in the cleft. As a consequence of this, glutamate concentration in the cleft has been modeled, in which glutamate ...

  8. Synaptic Vesicle Proteins and Active Zone Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kittel, Robert J.; Heckmann, Manfred

    2016-01-01

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

  9. Learning and reconsolidation implicate different synaptic mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yan; Meloni, Edward G; Carlezon, William A; Milad, Mohammed R; Pitman, Roger K; Nader, Karim; Bolshakov, Vadim Y

    2013-03-19

    Synaptic mechanisms underlying memory reconsolidation after retrieval are largely unknown. Here we report that synapses in projections to the lateral nucleus of the amygdala implicated in auditory fear conditioning, which are potentiated by learning, enter a labile state after memory reactivation, and must be restabilized through a postsynaptic mechanism implicating the mammalian target of rapamycin kinase-dependent signaling. Fear-conditioning-induced synaptic enhancements were primarily presynaptic in origin. Reconsolidation blockade with rapamycin, inhibiting mammalian target of rapamycin kinase activity, suppressed synaptic potentiation in slices from fear-conditioned rats. Surprisingly, this reduction of synaptic efficacy was mediated by post- but not presynaptic mechanisms. These findings suggest that different plasticity rules may apply to the processes underlying the acquisition of original fear memory and postreactivational stabilization of fear-conditioning-induced synaptic enhancements mediating fear memory reconsolidation. PMID:23487762

  10. Programmable synaptic chip for electronic neural networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moopenn, A.; Langenbacher, H.; Thakoor, A. P.; Khanna, S. K.

    1988-01-01

    A binary synaptic matrix chip has been developed for electronic neural networks. The matrix chip contains a programmable 32X32 array of 'long channel' NMOSFET binary connection elements implemented in a 3-micron bulk CMOS process. Since the neurons are kept off-chip, the synaptic chip serves as a 'cascadable' building block for a multi-chip synaptic network as large as 512X512 in size. As an alternative to the programmable NMOSFET (long channel) connection elements, tailored thin film resistors are deposited, in series with FET switches, on some CMOS test chips, to obtain the weak synaptic connections. Although deposition and patterning of the resistors require additional processing steps, they promise substantial savings in silicon area. The performance of synaptic chip in a 32-neuron breadboard system in an associative memory test application is discussed.

  11. The influence of glutamatergic receptor antagonists on biochemical and ultrastructural changes in myelin membranes of rats subjected to experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dąbrowska-Bouta, Beata; Strużyńska, Lidia; Chalimoniuk, Małgorzata; Frontczak-Baniewicz, Małgorzata; Sulkowski, Grzegorz

    2015-01-01

    Elevated extracellular glutamate in the synaptic cleft causes overactivation of glutamate receptors and kills neurons by an excitotoxic mechanism. Recent studies have shown that glutamate can also lead to toxic injury of white matter oligodendrocytes in myelin sheaths and consequently to axon demyelination. The present study was performed using the rodent model of multiple sclerosis known as experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). The aim of the study was to test the effects of the glutamatergic receptor antagonists amantadine and memantine (antagonists of NMDA receptors), LY 367384 (an antagonist of mGluR1), and MPEP (an mGluR5 antagonist) on the development of neurological symptoms in immunized animals, morphological changes in cerebral myelin, and expression of mRNA of the principal myelin proteins PLP, MBP, MOG, MAG, and CNPase. Pharmacological inhibition of NMDA receptors by amantadine and memantine was found to suppress neurological symptoms in EAE rats, whereas antagonists of the group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs G I) did not function positively. In the symptomatic phase of the disease we observed destruction of myelin sheaths via electron microscopy and decreased levels of mRNA for all of the principal myelin proteins. The results reveal that glutamate receptor antagonists have a positive effect on the expression of mRNA MBP and glycoproteins MAG and MOG but not on myelin ultrastructure. PMID:26785366

  12. Layer- and area-specific actions of norepinephrine on cortical synaptic transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salgado, Humberto; Treviño, Mario; Atzori, Marco

    2016-06-15

    The cerebral cortex is a critical target of the central noradrenergic system. The importance of norepinephrine (NE) in the regulation of cortical activity is underscored by clinical findings that involve this catecholamine and its receptor subtypes in the regulation of a large number of emotional and cognitive functions and illnesses. In this review, we highlight diverse effects of the LC/NE system in the mammalian cortex. Indeed, electrophysiological, pharmacological, and behavioral studies in the last few decades reveal that NE elicits a mixed repertoire of excitatory, inhibitory, and biphasic effects on the firing activity and transmitter release of cortical neurons. At the intrinsic cellular level, NE can produce a series of effects similar to those elicited by other monoamines or acetylcholine, associated with systemic arousal. At the synaptic level, NE induces numerous acute changes in synaptic function, and ׳gates' the induction of long-term plasticity of glutamatergic synapses, consisting in an enhancement of engaged and relevant cortical synapses and/or depression of unengaged synapses. Equally important in shaping cortical function, in many cortical areas NE promotes a characteristic, most often reversible, increase in the gain of local inhibitory synapses, whose extent and temporal properties vary between different areas and sometimes even between cortical layers of the same area. While we are still a long way from a comprehensive theory of the function of the LC/NE system, its cellular, synaptic, and plastic effects are consistent with the hypothesis that noradrenergic modulation is critical in coordinating the activity of cortical and subcortical circuits for the integration of sensory activity and working memory. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Noradrenergic System. PMID:26820639

  13. Activity-dependent synaptic plasticity modulates the critical phase of brain development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudhury, Sraboni; Sharma, Vikram; Kumar, Vivek; Nag, Tapas C; Wadhwa, Shashi

    2016-04-01

    Plasticity or neuronal plasticity is a unique and adaptive feature of nervous system which allows neurons to reorganize their interactions in response to an intrinsic or extrinsic stimulation and shapes the formation and maintenance of a functional neuronal circuit. Synaptic plasticity is the most important form of neural plasticity and plays critical role during the development allowing the formation of precise neural connectivity via the process of pruning. In the sensory systems-auditory and visual, this process is heavily dependent on the external cues perceived during the development. Environmental enrichment paradigms in an activity-dependent manner result in early maturation of the synapses and more efficient trans-synaptic signaling or communication flow. This has been extensively observed in the avian auditory system. On the other hand, stimuli results in negative effect can cause alterations in the synaptic connectivity and strength resulting in various developmental brain disorders including autism, fragile X syndrome and rett syndrome. In this review we discuss the role of different forms of activity (spontaneous or environmental) during the development of the nervous system in modifying synaptic plasticity necessary for shaping the adult brain. Also, we try to explore various factors (molecular, genetic and epigenetic) involved in altering the synaptic plasticity in positive and negative way. PMID:26515724

  14. Mapping synaptic pathology within cerebral cortical circuits in subjects with schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Sweet

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Converging lines of evidence indicate that schizophrenia is characterized by impairments of synaptic machinery within cerebral cortical circuits. Efforts to localize these alterations in brain tissue from subjects with schizophrenia have frequently been limited to the quantification of structures that are non-selectively identified (e.g. dendritic spines labeled in Golgi preparations, axon boutons labeled with synaptophysin, or to quantification of proteins using methods unable to resolve relevant cellular compartments. Multiple label fluorescence confocal microscopy represents a means to circumvent many of these limitations, by concurrently extracting information regarding the number, morphology, and relative protein content of synaptic structures. An important adaptation required for studies of human disease is coupling this approach to stereologic methods for systematic random sampling of relevant brain regions. In this review article we consider the application of multiple label fluorescence confocal microscopy to the mapping of synaptic alterations in subjects with schizophrenia and describe the application of a novel, readily automated, iterative intensity/morphological segmentation algorithm for the extraction of information regarding synaptic structure number, size, and relative protein level from tissue sections obtained using unbiased stereological principles of sampling. In this context, we provide examples of the examination of pre- and post-synaptic structures within excitatory and inhibitory circuits of the cerebral cortex.

  15. Synaptic control of motoneuronal excitability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rekling, J C; Funk, G D; Bayliss, D A;

    2000-01-01

    Movement, the fundamental component of behavior and the principal extrinsic action of the brain, is produced when skeletal muscles contract and relax in response to patterns of action potentials generated by motoneurons. The processes that determine the firing behavior of motoneurons are therefore...... important in understanding the transformation of neural activity to motor behavior. Here, we review recent studies on the control of motoneuronal excitability, focusing on synaptic and cellular properties. We first present a background description of motoneurons: their development, anatomical organization......, cationic inward current, hyperpolarization-activated inward current, Ca(2+) channels, or presynaptic release processes. Together, these numerous inputs mediate and modify incoming motor commands, ultimately generating the coordinated firing patterns that underlie muscle contractions during motor behavior....

  16. In the grey zone between epilepsy and schizophrenia: alterations in group II metabotropic glutamate receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dedeurwaerdere, Stefanie; Boets, Stephanie; Janssens, Pieter; Lavreysen, Hilde; Steckler, Thomas

    2015-09-01

    Glutamate is the major excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain. The glutamate system plays an important role in the formation of synapses during brain development and synaptic plasticity. Dysfunctions in glutamate regulation may lead to hyperexcitatory neuronal networks and neurotoxicity. Glutamate excess is possibly of great importance in the pathophysiology of several neurological and psychiatric disorders such as epilepsy and schizophrenia. Interestingly, cross talk between these disorders has been well documented: psychiatric comorbidities are frequent in epilepsy and temporal lobe epilepsy is one of the highest risk factors for developing psychosis. Therefore, dysfunctions in glutamatergic neurotransmission might constitute a common pathological mechanism. A major negative feedback system is regulated by the presynaptic group II metabotropic glutamate (mGlu) receptors including mGlu2/3 receptors. These receptors are predominantly localised extrasynaptically in basal ganglia and limbic structures. Hence, mGlu2/3 receptors are an interesting target for the treatment of disorders like epilepsy and schizophrenia. A dysfunction in the glutamate system may be associated with alterations in mGlu2/3 receptor expression. In this review, we describe the localization of mGlu2/3 receptors in the healthy brain of mice, rats and humans. Secondly, changes in mGlu2/3 receptor density of the brain regions affected in epilepsy and schizophrenia are summarised. Increased mGlu2/3 receptor density might represent a compensatory mechanism of the brain to regulate elevated glutamate levels, while reduced mGlu2/3 receptor density in some brain regions may further contribute to the aberrant hyperexcitability. Further research considering the mGlu2/3 receptor can contribute significantly to the understanding of the etiological and therapeutic role of group II mGlu receptor in epilepsy, epilepsy with psychosis and schizophrenia. PMID:25539775

  17. Characterization of emergent synaptic topologies in noisy neural networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Aaron James

    of a LIF neuron subjected to Gaussian white noise (GWN). The system reduces to the Ornstein-Uhlenbeck first passage time problem, the solution of which we build into the mapping method of Chapter 2. We demonstrate that simulations using the stochastic mapping have reduced computation time compared to traditional Runge-Kutta methods by more than a factor of 150. In Chapter 4, we use the stochastic mapping to study the dynamics of emerging synaptic topologies in noisy networks. With the addition of membrane noise, networks with dynamical synapses can admit states in which the distribution of the synaptic weights is static under spontaneous activity, but the random connectivity between neurons is dynamical. The widely cited problem of instabilities in networks with STDP is avoided with the implementation of a synaptic decay and an activation threshold on each synapse. When such networks are presented with stimulus modeled by a focused excitatory current, chain-like networks can emerge with the addition of an axon-remodeling plasticity rule, a topological constraint on the connectivity modeling the finite resources available to each neuron. The emergent topologies are the result of an iterative stochastic process. The dynamics of the growth process suggest a strong interplay between the network topology and the spike sequences they produce during development. Namely, the existence of an embedded spike sequence alters the distribution of synaptic weights through the entire network. The roles of model parameters that affect the interplay between network structure and activity are elucidated. Finally, we propose two mathematical growth models, which are complementary, that capture the essence of the growth dynamics observed in simulations. In Chapter 5, we present an extension of the stochastic mapping that allows the possibility of neuronal cooperation. We demonstrate that synaptic topologies admitting stereotypical sequences can emerge in yet higher, biologically

  18. Effects of intrastriatal blockade of glutamatergic transmission on the acquisition of T-maze and radial maze tasks

    OpenAIRE

    Hauber, Wolfgang; Schmidt, Werner J.

    1989-01-01

    Prefrontal cortex and neostriatum constituting the prefrontal system are connected by glutamatergic neurones. The involvement of this corticostriatal projection in control of maze performance of rats was investigated. Glutamatergic transmission mediated by N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors was blocked by intrastriatal injections of dl-2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid (AP-5) (50 nmole in 0.5 Mgrl). In experiment 1, intrastriatal AP-5 was found to increase the number of errors during acquisi...

  19. Investigating Glutamatergic Mechanism in Attention and Impulse Control Using Rats in a Modified 5-Choice Serial Reaction Time Task

    OpenAIRE

    Abigail Benn; Emma S J Robinson

    2014-01-01

    The 5-choice serial reaction time task (5CSRTT) has been widely used to study attention and impulse control in rodents. In order to mimic cognitive impairments in psychiatry, one approach has been to use acute administration of NMDA antagonists. This disruption in glutamatergic transmission leads to impairments in accuracy, omissions, and premature responses although findings have been inconsistent. In this study, we further investigated glutamatergic mechanisms using a novel version of the 5...

  20. Short-term environmental enrichment enhances synaptic plasticity in hippocampal slices from aged rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Liana R; O'Dell, Kazuko A; Funatsu, Michiyo; Zorumski, Charles F; Izumi, Yukitoshi

    2016-08-01

    Age-associated changes in cognition are mirrored by impairments in cellular models of memory and learning, such as long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). In young rodents, environmental enrichment (EE) can enhance memory, alter LTP and LTD, as well as reverse cognitive deficits induced by aging. Whether short-term EE can benefit cognition and synaptic plasticity in aged rodents is unclear. Here, we tested if short-term EE could overcome age-associated impairments in induction of LTP and LTD. LTP and LTD could not be induced in the CA1 region of hippocampal slices in control, aged rats using standard stimuli that are highly effective in young rats. However, exposure of aged littermates to EE for three weeks enabled successful induction of LTP and LTD. EE-facilitated LTP was dependent upon N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs). These alterations in synaptic plasticity occurred with elevated levels of phosphorylated cAMP response element-binding protein and vascular endothelial growth factor, but in the absence of changes in several other synaptic and cellular markers. Importantly, our study suggests that even a relatively short period of EE is sufficient to alter synaptic plasticity and molecular markers linked to cognitive function in aged animals. PMID:27208617

  1. Single-cell genetic expression of mutant GABAA receptors causing Human genetic epilepsy alters dendritic spine and GABAergic bouton formation in a mutation-specific manner

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lachance-Touchette, Pamela; Choudhury, Mayukh; Stoica, Ana; Di Cristo, Graziella; Cossette, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in genes encoding for GABAA receptor subunits is a well-established cause of genetic generalized epilepsy. GABA neurotransmission is implicated in several developmental processes including neurite outgrowth and synapse formation. Alteration in excitatory/inhibitory synaptic activities plays a critical role in epilepsy, thus here we investigated whether mutations in α1 subunit of GABAA receptor may affect dendritic spine and GABAergic bouton formation. In particular, we examined the effects of three mutations of the GABRA1 gene (D219N, A322D and K353delins18X) that were found in a cohort of French Canadian families with genetic generalized epilepsy. We used a novel single-cell genetic approach, by preparing cortical organotypic cultures from GABRA1flox/flox mice and simultaneously inactivating endogenous GABRA1 and transfecting mutant α1 subunits in single glutamatergic pyramidal cells and basket GABAergic interneurons by biolistic transfection. We found that GABRA1−/− GABAergic cells showed reduced innervation field, which was rescued by co-expressing α1-A322D and α1-WT but not α1-D219N. We further found that the expression of the most severe GABRA1 missense mutation (α1-A322D) induced a striking increase of spine density in pyramidal cells along with an increase in the number of mushroom-like spines. In addition, α1-A322D expression in GABAergic cells slightly increased perisomatic bouton density, whereas other mutations did not alter bouton formation. All together, these results suggest that the effects of different GABAAR mutations on GABAergic bouton and dendritic spine formation are specific to the mutation and cannot be always explained by a simple loss-of-function gene model. The use of single cell genetic manipulation in organotypic cultures may provide a better understanding of the specific and distinct neural circuit alterations caused by different GABAA receptor subunit mutations and will help define the pathophysiology of genetic

  2. Single-cell genetic expression of mutant GABAA receptors causing Human genetic epilepsy alters dendritic spine and GABAergic bouton formation in a mutation-specific manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lachance-Touchette, Pamela; Choudhury, Mayukh; Stoica, Ana; Di Cristo, Graziella; Cossette, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in genes encoding for GABAA receptor subunits is a well-established cause of genetic generalized epilepsy. GABA neurotransmission is implicated in several developmental processes including neurite outgrowth and synapse formation. Alteration in excitatory/inhibitory synaptic activities plays a critical role in epilepsy, thus here we investigated whether mutations in α1 subunit of GABAA receptor may affect dendritic spine and GABAergic bouton formation. In particular, we examined the effects of three mutations of the GABRA1 gene (D219N, A322D and K353delins18X) that were found in a cohort of French Canadian families with genetic generalized epilepsy. We used a novel single-cell genetic approach, by preparing cortical organotypic cultures from GABRA1 (flox/flox) mice and simultaneously inactivating endogenous GABRA1 and transfecting mutant α1 subunits in single glutamatergic pyramidal cells and basket GABAergic interneurons by biolistic transfection. We found that GABRA1 (-/-) GABAergic cells showed reduced innervation field, which was rescued by co-expressing α1-A322D and α1-WT but not α1-D219N. We further found that the expression of the most severe GABRA1 missense mutation (α1-A322D) induced a striking increase of spine density in pyramidal cells along with an increase in the number of mushroom-like spines. In addition, α1-A322D expression in GABAergic cells slightly increased perisomatic bouton density, whereas other mutations did not alter bouton formation. All together, these results suggest that the effects of different GABAAR mutations on GABAergic bouton and dendritic spine formation are specific to the mutation and cannot be always explained by a simple loss-of-function gene model. The use of single cell genetic manipulation in organotypic cultures may provide a better understanding of the specific and distinct neural circuit alterations caused by different GABAA receptor subunit mutations and will help define the pathophysiology of genetic

  3. Single-cell genetic expression of mutant GABAA receptors causing Human genetic epilepsy alters dendritic spine and GABAergic bouton formation in a mutation-specific manner

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pamela Lachance-Touchette

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Mutations in genes encoding for GABAA receptor subunits is a well-established cause of genetic generalized epilepsy. GABA neurotransmission is implicated in several developmental processes including neurite outgrowth and synapse formation. Alteration in excitatory/inhibitory synaptic activities plays a critical role in epilepsy, thus here we investigated whether mutations in α1 subunit of GABAA receptor may affect dendritic spine and GABAergic bouton formation. In particular, we examined the effects of three mutations of the GABRA1 gene (D219N, A322D and K353delins18X that were found in a cohort of families with genetic generalized epilepsy. We used a novel single-cell genetic approach, by preparing cortical organotypic cultures from GABRA1flox/flox mice and simultaneously inactivating endogenous GABRA1 and transfecting mutant α1 subunits in single glutamatergic pyramidal cells and basket GABAergic interneurons by biolistic transfection. We found that GABRA1-/- GABAergic cells showed reduced innervation field, which was rescued by co-expressing α1-A322D and α1-WT but not α1-D219N. We further found that the expression of the most severe GABRA1 missense mutation (α1-A322D induced a striking increase of spine density in pyramidal cells along with an increase in the number of mushroom-like spines. In addition, α1-A322D expression in GABAergic cells slightly increased perisomatic bouton density, whereas other mutations did not alter bouton formation. All together, these results suggest that the effects of different GABAAR mutations on GABAergic bouton and dendritic spine formation are specific to the mutation and cannot be always explained by a simple loss-of-function gene model. The use of single cell genetic manipulation in organotypic cultures may provide a better understanding of the specific and distinct neural circuit alterations caused by different GABAA receptor subunit mutations and will help define the pathophysiology of genetic

  4. Respiratory-related Outputs of Glutamatergic, Hypercapnia-Responsive Parabrachial Neurons in Mice

    OpenAIRE

    Yokota, Shigefumi; Kaur, Satvinder; VanderHorst, Veronique G.; Saper, Clifford B.; Chamberlin, Nancy L.

    2015-01-01

    In patients with obstructive sleep apnea, airway obstruction during sleep produces hypercapnia which in turn activates respiratory muscles that pump air into the lungs (e.g. the diaphragm) and that dilate and stabilize the upper airway (e.g., the genioglossus). We hypothesized that these responses are facilitated by glutamatergic neurons in the parabrachial complex (PB) that respond to hypercapnia and project to premotor and motor neurons that innervate the diaphragm and genioglossus muscles....

  5. Targeting the Glutamatergic System to Develop Novel, Improved Therapeutics for Mood Disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Sanacora, Gerard; Zarate, Carlos A.; Krystal, John; Manji, Husseini K.

    2008-01-01

    Mood disorders are common, chronic, recurrent mental illnesses that affect the lives of millions of individuals worldwide. To date, the monoaminergic systems (serotonergic, noradrenergic and dopaminergic) in the brain have received the greatest attention in neurobiological studies of mood disorders, and most therapeutics target these systems. However, there is growing evidence that the glutamatergic system is central to the neurobiology and treatment of these disorders. Here, we review data s...

  6. SEROTONERGIC/GLUTAMATERGIC INTERACTIONS: POTENTIATION OF PHENCYCLIDINE-INDUCED STIMULUS CONTROL BY CITALOPRAM

    OpenAIRE

    Winter, J. C.; Eckler, J.R.; Rice, K. C.; Rabin, R. A.

    2005-01-01

    Previous investigations in our laboratory have found that the stimulus effects of the hallucinogenic serotonergic agonists DOM and LSD are potentiated by phencyclidine [PCP], a non-competitive NMDA antagonist. Also suggestive of behaviorally significant serotonergic/glutamatergic interactions is our finding that stimulus control by both PCP and LSD is partially antagonized by the mGlu2/3 agonist, LY 379268. These observations coupled with the fact that the stimulus effects of LSD and DOM are ...

  7. MET Receptor Tyrosine Kinase Controls Dendritic Complexity, Spine Morphogenesis, and Glutamatergic Synapse Maturation in the Hippocampus

    OpenAIRE

    Qiu, Shenfeng; Lu, Zhongming; Levitt, Pat

    2014-01-01

    The MET receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK), implicated in risk for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and in functional and structural circuit integrity in humans, is a temporally and spatially regulated receptor enriched in dorsal pallial-derived structures during mouse forebrain development. Here we report that loss or gain of function of MET in vitro or in vivo leads to changes, opposite in nature, in dendritic complexity, spine morphogenesis, and the timing of glutamatergic synapse maturation ont...

  8. Salsolinol Facilitates Glutamatergic Transmission to Dopamine Neurons in the Posterior Ventral Tegmental Area of Rats

    OpenAIRE

    Xie, Guiqin; Ye, Jiang-Hong

    2012-01-01

    Although in vivo evidence indicates that salsolinol, the condensation product of acetaldehyde and dopamine, has properties that may contribute to alcohol abuse, the underlying mechanisms have not been fully elucidated. We have reported previously that salsolinol stimulates dopamine neurons in the posterior ventral tegmental area (p-VTA) partly by reducing inhibitory GABAergic transmission, and that ethanol increases glutamatergic transmission to VTA-dopamine neurons via the activation of dopa...

  9. Efficient derivation of cortical glutamatergic neurons from human pluripotent stem cells: a model system to study neurotoxicity in Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vazin, Tandis; Ball, K Aurelia; Lu, Hui; Park, Hyungju; Ataeijannati, Yasaman; Head-Gordon, Teresa; Poo, Mu-ming; Schaffer, David V

    2014-02-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is among the most prevalent forms of dementia affecting the aging population, and pharmacological therapies to date have not been successful in preventing disease progression. Future therapeutic efforts may benefit from the development of models that enable basic investigation of early disease pathology. In particular, disease-relevant models based on human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) may be promising approaches to assess the impact of neurotoxic agents in AD on specific neuronal populations and thereby facilitate the development of novel interventions to avert early disease mechanisms. We implemented an efficient paradigm to convert hPSCs into enriched populations of cortical glutamatergic neurons emerging from dorsal forebrain neural progenitors, aided by modulating Sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling. Since AD is generally known to be toxic to glutamatergic circuits, we exposed glutamatergic neurons derived from hESCs to an oligomeric pre-fibrillar forms of Aβ known as "globulomers", which have shown strong correlation with the level of cognitive deficits in AD. Administration of such Aβ oligomers yielded signs of the disease, including cell culture age-dependent binding of Aβ and cell death in the glutamatergic populations. Furthermore, consistent with previous findings in postmortem human AD brain, Aβ-induced toxicity was selective for glutamatergic rather than GABAeric neurons present in our cultures. This in vitro model of cortical glutamatergic neurons thus offers a system for future mechanistic investigation and therapeutic development for AD pathology using human cell types specifically affected by this disease. PMID:24055772

  10. A novel transient glutamatergic population migrating from the pallial-subpallial boundary contributes to neocortical development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teissier, Anne; Griveau, Amélie; Vigier, Lisa; Piolot, Tristan; Borello, Ugo; Pierani, Alessandra

    2010-08-01

    The generation of a precise number of neural cells and the determination of their laminar fate are tightly controlled processes during development of the cerebral cortex. Using genetic tracing in mice, we have identified a population of glutamatergic neurons generated by Dbx1-expressing progenitors at the pallial-subpallial boundary predominantly at embryonic day 12.5 (E12.5) and subsequent to Cajal-Retzius cells. We show that these neurons migrate tangentially to populate the cortical plate (CP) at all rostrocaudal and mediolateral levels by E14.5. At birth, they homogeneously populate cortical areas and represent <5% of cortical cells. However, they are distributed into neocortical layers according to their birthdates and express the corresponding markers of glutamatergic differentiation (Tbr1, ER81, Cux2, Ctip2). Notably, this population dies massively by apoptosis at the completion of corticogenesis and represents 50% of dying neurons in the postnatal day 0 cortex. Specific genetic ablation of these transient Dbx1-derived CP neurons leads to a 20% decrease in neocortical cell numbers in perinatal animals. Our results show that a previously unidentified transient population of glutamatergic neurons migrates from extraneocortical regions over long distance from their generation site and participates in neocortical radial growth in a non-cell-autonomous manner. PMID:20685999

  11. The role of microglia in synaptic stripping and synaptic degeneration: a revised perspective

    OpenAIRE

    Perry, V. Hugh; O'Connor, Vincent

    2010-01-01

    Chronic neurodegenerative diseases of the CNS (central nervous system) are characterized by the loss of neurons. There is, however, growing evidence to show that an early stage of this process involves degeneration of presynaptic terminals prior to the loss of the cell body. Synaptic plasticity in CNS pathology has been associated with microglia and the phenomenon of synaptic stripping. We review here the evidence for the involvement of microglia in synaptic stripping and synapse degeneration...

  12. Programmable synaptic devices for electronic neural nets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moopenn, A.; Thakoor, A. P.

    1990-01-01

    The architecture, design, and operational characteristics of custom VLSI and thin film synaptic devices are described. The devices include CMOS-based synaptic chips containing 1024 reprogrammable synapses with a 6-bit dynamic range, and nonvolatile, write-once, binary synaptic arrays based on memory switching in hydrogenated amorphous silicon films. Their suitability for embodiment of fully parallel and analog neural hardware is discussed. Specifically, a neural network solution to an assignment problem of combinatorial global optimization, implemented in fully parallel hardware using the synaptic chips, is described. The network's ability to provide optimal and near optimal solutions over a time scale of few neuron time constants has been demonstrated and suggests a speedup improvement of several orders of magnitude over conventional search methods.

  13. The Ins and Outs of miRNA-Mediated Gene Silencing during Neuronal Synaptic Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dipen Rajgor

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Neuronal connections through specialized junctions, known as synapses, create circuits that underlie brain function. Synaptic plasticity, i.e., structural and functional changes to synapses, occurs in response to neuronal activity and is a critical regulator of various nervous system functions, including long-term memory formation. The discovery of mRNAs, miRNAs, ncRNAs, ribosomes, translational repressors, and other RNA binding proteins in dendritic spines allows individual synapses to alter their synaptic strength rapidly through regulation of local protein synthesis in response to different physiological stimuli. In this review, we discuss our understanding of a number of miRNAs, ncRNAs, and RNA binding proteins that are emerging as important regulators of synaptic plasticity, which play a critical role in memory, learning, and diseases that arise when neuronal circuits are impaired.

  14. Brain circuitry outside the synaptic cleft

    OpenAIRE

    Rusakov, Dmitri A.; Alexander E Dityatev

    2014-01-01

    A growing body of experimental evidence suggests that astroglia, and possibly microglia, play an important part in regulating synaptic networking of the brain. It has also emerged that extracellular matrix (ECM) structures that enwrap synaptic connections can generate molecular signals affecting both neuronal and glial activity. Thus it appears that the mechanism of information processing in the brain, which has hitherto been associated almost exclusively with neural circuits, could also invo...

  15. Protein tyrosine phosphorylation in synaptic vesicles.

    OpenAIRE

    Pang, D T; Wang, J K; Valtorta, F; Benfenati, F; Greengard, P.

    1988-01-01

    Protein tyrosine phosphorylation in purified synaptic vesicles from rat forebrain has been studied in the presence of Mn2+ and orthovanadate. High levels of endogenous protein tyrosine phosphorylation were observed. Four major phosphoproteins, with apparent molecular masses of 105, 94, 38, and 30 kDa, were shown to contain phosphotyrosine. The 38-kDa phosphoprotein was identified as synaptophysin (p38), a well-characterized integral membrane protein of synaptic vesicles. The three other phosp...

  16. Optogenetic Stimulation of Arcuate Nucleus Kiss1 Neurons Reveals a Steroid-Dependent Glutamatergic Input to POMC and AgRP Neurons in Male Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nestor, Casey C; Qiu, Jian; Padilla, Stephanie L; Zhang, Chunguang; Bosch, Martha A; Fan, Wei; Aicher, Sue A; Palmiter, Richard D; Rønnekleiv, Oline K; Kelly, Martin J

    2016-06-01

    Kisspeptin (Kiss1) neurons are essential for reproduction, but their role in the control of energy balance and other homeostatic functions remains unclear. Proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons, located in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) of the hypothalamus, integrate numerous excitatory and inhibitory inputs to ultimately regulate energy homeostasis. Given that POMC and AgRP neurons are contacted by Kiss1 neurons in the ARC (Kiss1(ARC)) and they express androgen receptors, Kiss1(ARC) neurons may mediate the orexigenic action of testosterone via POMC and/or AgRP neurons. Quantitative PCR analysis of pooled Kiss1(ARC) neurons revealed that mRNA levels for Kiss1 and vesicular glutamate transporter 2 were higher in castrated male mice compared with gonad-intact males. Single-cell RT-PCR analysis of yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) ARC neurons harvested from males injected with AAV1-EF1α-DIO-ChR2:YFP revealed that 100% and 88% expressed mRNAs for Kiss1 and vesicular glutamate transporter 2, respectively. Whole-cell, voltage-clamp recordings from nonfluorescent postsynaptic ARC neurons showed that low frequency photo-stimulation (0.5 Hz) of Kiss1-ChR2:YFP neurons elicited a fast glutamatergic inward current in POMC and AgRP neurons. Paired-pulse, photo-stimulation revealed paired-pulse depression, which is indicative of greater glutamate release, in the castrated male mice compared with gonad-intact male mice. Group I and group II metabotropic glutamate receptor agonists depolarized and hyperpolarized POMC and AgRP neurons, respectively, which was mimicked by high frequency photo-stimulation (20 Hz) of Kiss1(ARC) neurons. Therefore, POMC and AgRP neurons receive direct steroid- and frequency-dependent glutamatergic synaptic input from Kiss1(ARC) neurons in male mice, which may be a critical pathway for Kiss1 neurons to help coordinate energy homeostasis and reproduction. PMID:27093227

  17. Lateral regulation of synaptic transmission by astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Covelo, A; Araque, A

    2016-05-26

    Fifteen years ago the concept of the "tripartite synapse" was proposed to conceptualize the functional view that astrocytes are integral elements of synapses. The signaling exchange between astrocytes and neurons within the tripartite synapse results in the synaptic regulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity through an autocrine form of communication. However, recent evidence indicates that the astrocyte synaptic regulation is not restricted to the active tripartite synapse but can be manifested through astrocyte signaling at synapses relatively distant from active synapses, a process termed lateral astrocyte synaptic regulation. This phenomenon resembles the classical heterosynaptic modulation but is mechanistically different because it involves astrocytes and its properties critically depend on the morphological and functional features of astrocytes. Therefore, the functional concept of the tripartite synapse as a fundamental unit must be expanded to include the interaction between tripartite synapses. Through lateral synaptic regulation, astrocytes serve as an active processing bridge for synaptic interaction and crosstalk between synapses with no direct neuronal connectivity, supporting the idea that neural network function results from the coordinated activity of astrocytes and neurons. PMID:25732135

  18. Intracellular accumulation of amyloid-beta - a predictor for synaptic dysfunction and neuron loss in Alzheimer's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas A Bayer

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Despite of long-standing evidence that beta-amyloid (Aβ peptides have detrimental effects on synaptic function, the relationship between Aβ, synaptic and neuron loss is largely unclear. During the last years there is growing evidence that early intraneuronal accumulation of Aβ peptides is one of the key events leading to synaptic and neuronal dysfunction. Many studies have been carried out using transgenic mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease (AD which have been proven to be valuable model system in modern AD research. The present review discusses the impact of intraneuronal Aβ accumulation on synaptic impairment and neuron loss and provides an overview of currently available AD mouse models showing these pathological alterations.

  19. MiR-134-dependent regulation of Pumilio-2 is necessary for homeostatic synaptic depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fiore, Roberto; Rajman, Marek; Schwale, Chrysovalandis; Bicker, Silvia; Antoniou, Anna; Bruehl, Claus; Draguhn, Andreas; Schratt, Gerhard

    2014-10-01

    Neurons employ a set of homeostatic plasticity mechanisms to counterbalance altered levels of network activity. The molecular mechanisms underlying homeostatic plasticity in response to increased network excitability are still poorly understood. Here, we describe a sequential homeostatic synaptic depression mechanism in primary hippocampal neurons involving miRNA-dependent translational regulation. This mechanism consists of an initial phase of synapse elimination followed by a reinforcing phase of synaptic downscaling. The activity-regulated microRNA miR-134 is necessary for both synapse elimination and the structural rearrangements leading to synaptic downscaling. Results from miR-134 inhibition further uncover a differential requirement for GluA1/2 subunits for the functional expression of homeostatic synaptic depression. Downregulation of the miR-134 target Pumilio-2 in response to chronic activity, which selectively occurs in the synapto-dendritic compartment, is required for miR-134-mediated homeostatic synaptic depression. We further identified polo-like kinase 2 (Plk2) as a novel target of Pumilio-2 involved in the control of GluA2 surface expression. In summary, we have described a novel pathway of homeostatic plasticity that stabilizes neuronal circuits in response to increased network activity. PMID:25097251

  20. Sortilin-related receptor SORCS3 is a postsynaptic modulator of synaptic depression and fear extinction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breiderhoff, Tilman; Christiansen, Gitte B; Pallesen, Lone T; Vaegter, Christian; Nykjaer, Anders; Holm, Mai Marie; Glerup, Simon; Willnow, Thomas E

    2013-01-01

    SORCS3 is an orphan receptor of the VPS10P domain receptor family, a group of sorting and signaling receptors central to many pathways in control of neuronal viability and function. SORCS3 is highly expressed in the CA1 region of the hippocampus, but the relevance of this receptor for hippocampal activity remained absolutely unclear. Here, we show that SORCS3 localizes to the postsynaptic density and that loss of receptor activity in gene-targeted mice abrogates NMDA receptor-dependent and -independent forms of long-term depression (LTD). Consistent with a loss of synaptic retraction, SORCS3-deficient mice suffer from deficits in behavioral activities associated with hippocampal LTD, particularly from an accelerated extinction of fear memory. A possible molecular mechanism for SORCS3 in synaptic depression was suggested by targeted proteomics approaches that identified the ability of SORCS3 to functionally interact with PICK1, an adaptor that sorts glutamate receptors at the postsynapse. Faulty localization of PICK1 in SORCS3-deficient neurons argues for altered glutamate receptor trafficking as the cause of altered synaptic plasticity in the SORCS3-deficient mouse model. In conclusion, our studies have identified a novel function for VPS10P domain receptors in control of synaptic depression and suggest SORCS3 as a novel factor modulating aversive memory extinction. PMID:24069373

  1. Network burst dynamics under heterogeneous cholinergic modulation of neural firing properties and heterogeneous synaptic connectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knudstrup, Scott; Zochowski, Michal; Booth, Victoria

    2016-05-01

    The characteristics of neural network activity depend on intrinsic neural properties and synaptic connectivity in the network. In brain networks, both of these properties are critically affected by the type and levels of neuromodulators present. The expression of many of the most powerful neuromodulators, including acetylcholine (ACh), varies tonically and phasically with behavioural state, leading to dynamic, heterogeneous changes in intrinsic neural properties and synaptic connectivity properties. Namely, ACh significantly alters neural firing properties as measured by the phase response curve in a manner that has been shown to alter the propensity for network synchronization. The aim of this simulation study was to build an understanding of how heterogeneity in cholinergic modulation of neural firing properties and heterogeneity in synaptic connectivity affect the initiation and maintenance of synchronous network bursting in excitatory networks. We show that cells that display different levels of ACh modulation have differential roles in generating network activity: weakly modulated cells are necessary for burst initiation and provide synchronizing drive to the rest of the network, whereas strongly modulated cells provide the overall activity level necessary to sustain burst firing. By applying several quantitative measures of network activity, we further show that the existence of network bursting and its characteristics, such as burst duration and intraburst synchrony, are dependent on the fraction of cell types providing the synaptic connections in the network. These results suggest mechanisms underlying ACh modulation of brain oscillations and the modulation of seizure activity during sleep states. PMID:26869313

  2. Synaptic Ribbons Require Ribeye for Electron Density, Proper Synaptic Localization, and Recruitment of Calcium Channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lv, Caixia; Stewart, William J; Akanyeti, Otar; Frederick, Courtney; Zhu, Jie; Santos-Sacchi, Joseph; Sheets, Lavinia; Liao, James C; Zenisek, David

    2016-06-21

    Synaptic ribbons are structures made largely of the protein Ribeye that hold synaptic vesicles near release sites in non-spiking cells in some sensory systems. Here, we introduce frameshift mutations in the two zebrafish genes encoding for Ribeye and thus remove Ribeye protein from neuromast hair cells. Despite Ribeye depletion, vesicles collect around ribbon-like structures that lack electron density, which we term "ghost ribbons." Ghost ribbons are smaller in size but possess a similar number of smaller vesicles and are poorly localized to synapses and calcium channels. These hair cells exhibit enhanced exocytosis, as measured by capacitance, and recordings from afferent neurons post-synaptic to hair cells show no significant difference in spike rates. Our results suggest that Ribeye makes up most of the synaptic ribbon density in neuromast hair cells and is necessary for proper localization of calcium channels and synaptic ribbons. PMID:27292637

  3. Stress dynamically regulates behavior and glutamatergic gene expression in hippocampus by opening a window of epigenetic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nasca, Carla; Zelli, Danielle; Bigio, Benedetta; Piccinin, Sonia; Scaccianoce, Sergio; Nisticò, Robert; McEwen, Bruce S

    2015-12-01

    Excitatory amino acids play a key role in both adaptive and deleterious effects of stressors on the brain, and dysregulated glutamate homeostasis has been associated with psychiatric and neurological disorders. Here, we elucidate mechanisms of epigenetic plasticity in the hippocampus in the interactions between a history of chronic stress and familiar and novel acute stressors that alter expression of anxiety- and depressive-like behaviors. We demonstrate that acute restraint and acute forced swim stressors induce differential effects on these behaviors in naive mice and in mice with a history of chronic-restraint stress (CRS). They reveal a key role for epigenetic up- and down-regulation of the putative presynaptic type 2 metabotropic glutamate (mGlu2) receptors and the postsynaptic NR1/NMDA receptors in the hippocampus and particularly in the dentate gyrus (DG), a region of active neurogenesis and a target of antidepressant treatment. We show changes in DG long-term potentiation (LTP) that parallel behavioral responses, with habituation to the same acute restraint stressor and sensitization to a novel forced-swim stressor. In WT mice after CRS and in unstressed mice with a BDNF loss-of-function allele (BDNF Val66Met), we show that the epigenetic activator of histone acetylation, P300, plays a pivotal role in the dynamic up- and down-regulation of mGlu2 in hippocampus via histone-3-lysine-27-acetylation (H3K27Ac) when acute stressors are applied. These hippocampal responses reveal a window of epigenetic plasticity that may be useful for treatment of disorders in which glutamatergic transmission is dysregulated. PMID:26627246

  4. Traumatic brain injury impairs synaptic plasticity in hippocampus in rats

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Bao-liang; CHEN Xin; TAN Tao; YANG Zhuo; CARLOS Dayao; JIANG Rong-cai; ZHANG Jian-ning

    2011-01-01

    Background Traumatic brain injury (TBl) often causes cognitive deficits and remote symptomatic epilepsy.Hippocampal regional excitability is associated with the cognitive function. However, little is known about injury-induced neuronal loss and subsequent alterations of hippocampal regional excitability. The present study was designed to determine whether TBl may impair the cellular circuit in the hippocampus.Methods Forty male Wistar rats were randomized into control (n=20) and TBl groups (n=20). Long-term potentiation,extracellular input/output curves, and hippocampal parvalbumin-immunoreactive and cholecystokinin-immunoreactive interneurons were compared between the two groups.Results TBI resulted in a significantly increased excitability in the dentate gyrus (DG), but a significantly decreased excitability in the cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) area. Using design-based stereological injury procedures, we induced interneuronal loss in the DG and CA3 subregions in the hippocampus, but not in the CA1 area.Conclusions TBl leads to the impairment of hippocampus synaptic plasticity due to the changing of interneuronal interaction. The injury-induced disruption of synaptic efficacy within the hippocampal circuit may underlie the observed cognitive deficits and symptomatic epilepsy.

  5. Modeling synaptic transmission of the tripartite synapse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadkarni, Suhita; Jung, Peter

    2007-03-01

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

  6. Tlx3 promotes glutamatergic neuronal subtype specification through direct interactions with the chromatin modifier CBP.

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    Atsushi Shimomura

    Full Text Available Nervous system development relies on the generation of precise numbers of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. The homeodomain transcription factor, T-cell leukemia 3 (Tlx3, functions as the master neuronal fate regulator by instructively promoting the specification of glutamatergic excitatory neurons and suppressing the specification of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAergic neurons. However, how Tlx3 promotes glutamatergic neuronal subtype specification is poorly understood. In this study, we found that Tlx3 directly interacts with the epigenetic co-activator cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP-response element-binding protein (CREB-binding protein (CBP and that the Tlx3 homeodomain is essential for this interaction. The interaction between Tlx3 and CBP was enhanced by the three amino acid loop extension (TALE-class homeodomain transcription factor, pre-B-cell leukemia transcription factor 3 (Pbx3. Using mouse embryonic stem (ES cells stably expressing Tlx3, we found that the interaction between Tlx3 and CBP became detectable only after these Tlx3-expressing ES cells were committed to a neural lineage, which coincided with increased Pbx3 expression during neural differentiation from ES cells. Forced expression of mutated Tlx3 lacking the homeodomain in ES cells undergoing neural differentiation resulted in significantly reduced expression of glutamatergic neuronal subtype markers, but had little effect on the expression on pan neural markers. Collectively, our results strongly suggest that functional interplay between Tlx3 and CBP plays a critical role in neuronal subtype specification, providing novel insights into the epigenetic regulatory mechanism that modulates the transcriptional efficacy of a selective set of neuronal subtype-specific genes during differentiation.

  7. Alteration of BACE1-dependent NRG1/ErbB4 signaling and schizophrenia-like phenotypes in BACE1-null mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savonenko, A V; Melnikova, T; Laird, F M; Stewart, K-A; Price, D L; Wong, P C

    2008-04-01

    beta-Site APP-cleaving enzyme 1 (BACE1) is required for the penultimate cleavage of the amyloid-beta precursor protein (APP) leading to the generation of amyloid-beta peptides that is central to the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. In addition to its role in endoproteolysis of APP, BACE1 participates in the proteolytic processing of neuregulin 1 (NRG1) and influences the myelination of central and peripheral axons. Although NRG1 has been genetically linked to schizophrenia and NRG1(+/-) mice exhibit a number of schizophrenia-like behavioral traits, it is not known whether altered BACE1-dependent NRG1 signaling can cause similar behavioral abnormalities. To test this hypothesis, we analyze the behaviors considered to be rodent analogs of clinical features of schizophrenia in BACE1(-/-) mice with impaired processing of NRG1. We demonstrate that BACE1(-/-) mice exhibit deficits in prepulse inhibition, novelty-induced hyperactivity, hypersensitivity to a glutamatergic psychostimulant (MK-801), cognitive impairments, and deficits in social recognition. Importantly, some of these manifestations were responsive to treatment with clozapine, an atypical antipsychotic drug. Moreover, although the total amount of ErbB4, a receptor for NRG1 was not changed, binding of ErbB4 with postsynaptic density protein 95 (PSD95) was significantly reduced in the brains of BACE1(-/-) mice. Consistent with the role of ErbB4 in spine morphology and synaptic function, BACE1(-/-) mice displayed reduced spine density in hippocampal pyramidal neurons. Collectively, our findings suggest that alterations in BACE1-dependent NRG1/ErbB4 signaling may participate in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia and related psychiatric disorders. PMID:18385378

  8. Changes in sensitivity of reward and motor behavior to dopaminergic, glutamatergic, and cholinergic drugs in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric W Fish

    Full Text Available Fragile X syndrome (FXS is a leading cause of intellectual disability. FXS is caused by loss of function of the FMR1 gene, and mice in which Fmr1 has been inactivated have been used extensively as a preclinical model for FXS. We investigated the behavioral pharmacology of drugs acting through dopaminergic, glutamatergic, and cholinergic systems in fragile X (Fmr1 (-/Y mice with intracranial self-stimulation (ICSS and locomotor activity measurements. We also measured brain expression of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH, the rate-limiting enzyme in dopamine biosynthesis. Fmr1 (-/Y mice were more sensitive than wild type mice to the rewarding effects of cocaine, but less sensitive to its locomotor stimulating effects. Anhedonic but not motor depressant effects of the atypical neuroleptic, aripiprazole, were reduced in Fmr1 (-/Y mice. The mGluR5-selective antagonist, 6-methyl-2-(phenylethynylpyridine (MPEP, was more rewarding and the preferential M1 antagonist, trihexyphenidyl, was less rewarding in Fmr1 (-/Y than wild type mice. Motor stimulation by MPEP was unchanged, but stimulation by trihexyphenidyl was markedly increased, in Fmr1 (-/Y mice. Numbers of midbrain TH+ neurons in the ventral tegmental area were unchanged, but were lower in the substantia nigra of Fmr1 (-/Y mice, although no changes in TH levels were found in their forebrain targets. The data are discussed in the context of known changes in the synaptic physiology and pharmacology of limbic motor systems in the Fmr1 (-/Y mouse model. Preclinical findings suggest that drugs acting through multiple neurotransmitter systems may be necessary to fully address abnormal behaviors in individuals with FXS.

  9. Activation of CRH receptor type 1 expressed on glutamatergic neurons increases excitability of CA1 pyramidal neurons by the modulation of voltage-gated ion channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephan eKratzer

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH plays an important role in a substantial number of patients with stress-related mental disorders, such as anxiety disorders and depression. CRH has been shown to increase neuronal excitability in the hippocampus, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. The effects of CRH on neuronal excitability were investigated in acute hippocampal brain slices. Population spikes (PS and field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSP were evoked by stimulating Schaffer-collaterals and recorded simultaneously from the somatic and dendritic region of CA1 pyramidal neurons. CRH was found to increase PS amplitudes (mean  Standard error of the mean; 231.8  31.2% of control; n=10 while neither affecting fEPSPs (104.3 ± 4.2%; n=10 nor long-term potentiation (LTP. However, when Schaffer-collaterals were excited via action potentials (APs generated by stimulation of CA3 pyramidal neurons, CRH increased fEPSP amplitudes (119.8 ± 3.6%; n=8 and the magnitude of LTP in the CA1 region. Experiments in slices from transgenic mice revealed that the effect on PS amplitude is mediated exclusively by CRH receptor 1 (CRHR1 expressed on glutamatergic neurons. The effects of CRH on PS were dependent on phosphatase-2B, L- and T-type calcium channels and voltage-gated potassium channels but independent on intracellular Ca2+-elevation. In patch-clamp experiments, CRH increased the frequency and decay times of APs and decreased currents through A-type and delayed-rectifier potassium channels. These results suggest that CRH does not affect synaptic transmission per se, but modulates voltage-gated ion currents important for the generation of APs and hence elevates by this route overall neuronal activity.

  10. Behavioral and synaptic circuit features in a zebrafish model of fragile X syndrome.

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    Ming-Chong Ng

    Full Text Available Fragile X syndrome (FXS is the most frequent inherited form of human mental retardation. It is characterized by cognitive impairment and physical and behavioral problems and is caused by the silencing of fmr1 transcription and the absence of the fmr1 protein (FMRP. Recently, animal models of FXS have greatly facilitated the investigation of the molecular and cellular mechanisms of this loss-of-function disorder. The present study was aimed to further characterize the role of FMRP in behavior and synaptic function by using fmr1 knockout zebrafish. In adult zebrafish, we found that fmr1 knockout produces the anxiolytic-like responses of increased exploratory behavior in light/dark and open-field tests and avoidance learning impairment. Furthermore, electrophysiological recordings from telencephalic slice preparations of knockout fish displayed markedly reduced long-term potentiation and enhanced long-term depression compared to wild-type fish; however, basal glutamatergic transmission and presynaptic function at the lateral (Dl and medial (Dm division of the dorsal telencephalon synapse remained normal. Taken together, our study not only evaluates the mechanism of FRMP but also suggests that zebrafish have valuable potential as a complementary vertebrate model in studying the molecular pathogenesis of human fragile X syndrome.

  11. Optogenetic inhibition of cortical afferents in the nucleus accumbens simultaneously prevents cue-induced transient synaptic potentiation and cocaine-seeking behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stefanik, Michael T; Kupchik, Yonatan M; Kalivas, Peter W

    2016-04-01

    Animal models of relapse reveal that the motivation to seek drug is regulated by enduring morphological and physiological changes in the nucleus accumbens, as well as transient synaptic potentiation in the accumbens core (NAcore) that parallels drug-seeking behavior. The current study sought to examine the link between the behavioral and synaptic consequences of cue-induced cocaine seeking by optically silencing glutamatergic afferents to the NAcore from the prelimbic cortex (PL). Adeno-associated virus coding for the inhibitory opsin archaerhodopsin was microinjected into PL, and optical fibers were targeted to NAcore. Animals were trained to self-administer cocaine followed by extinction training, and then underwent cue-induced reinstatement in the presence or absence of 15 min of optically induced inhibition of PL fibers in NAcore. Inhibiting the PL-to-NAcore projection blocked reinstated behavior and was paralleled by decreased dendritic spine head diameter and AMPA/NMDA ratio relative to sham-laser control rats. Interestingly, while spine density was elevated after extinction training, no further effects were observed by cued reinstatement or optical inhibition. These findings validate the critical role for PL afferents to the NAcore in simultaneously regulating both reinstated behavior and the associated transient synaptic potentiation. PMID:25663648

  12. Time-dependent reversal of synaptic plasticity induced by physiological concentrations of oligomeric Aβ42: an early index of Alzheimer’s disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koppensteiner, Peter; Trinchese, Fabrizio; Fà, Mauro; Puzzo, Daniela; Gulisano, Walter; Yan, Shijun; Poussin, Arthur; Liu, Shumin; Orozco, Ian; Dale, Elena; Teich, Andrew F.; Palmeri, Agostino; Ninan, Ipe; Boehm, Stefan; Arancio, Ottavio

    2016-01-01

    The oligomeric amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide is thought to contribute to the subtle amnesic changes in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) by causing synaptic dysfunction. Here, we examined the time course of synaptic changes in mouse hippocampal neurons following exposure to Aβ42 at picomolar concentrations, mimicking its physiological levels in the brain. We found opposite effects of the peptide with short exposures in the range of minutes enhancing synaptic plasticity, and longer exposures lasting several hours reducing it. The plasticity reduction was concomitant with an increase in the basal frequency of spontaneous neurotransmitter release, a higher basal number of functional presynaptic release sites, and a redistribution of synaptic proteins including the vesicle-associated proteins synapsin I, synaptophysin, and the post-synaptic glutamate receptor I. These synaptic alterations were mediated by cytoskeletal changes involving actin polymerization and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase. These in vitro findings were confirmed in vivo with short hippocampal infusions of picomolar Aβ enhancing contextual memory and prolonged infusions impairing it. Our findings provide a model for initiation of synaptic dysfunction whereby exposure to physiologic levels of Aβ for a prolonged period of time causes microstructural changes at the synapse which result in increased transmitter release, failure of synaptic plasticity, and memory loss. PMID:27581852

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel H. Friedman

    2013-11-01

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

  15. Synaptic neurotransmission depression in ventral tegmental dopamine neurons and cannabinoid-associated addictive learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiqiang Liu

    Full Text Available Drug addiction is an association of compulsive drug use with long-term associative learning/memory. Multiple forms of learning/memory are primarily subserved by activity- or experience-dependent synaptic long-term potentiation (LTP and long-term depression (LTD. Recent studies suggest LTP expression in locally activated glutamate synapses onto dopamine neurons (local Glu-DA synapses of the midbrain ventral tegmental area (VTA following a single or chronic exposure to many drugs of abuse, whereas a single exposure to cannabinoid did not significantly affect synaptic plasticity at these synapses. It is unknown whether chronic exposure of cannabis (marijuana or cannabinoids, the most commonly used illicit drug worldwide, induce LTP or LTD at these synapses. More importantly, whether such alterations in VTA synaptic plasticity causatively contribute to drug addictive behavior has not previously been addressed. Here we show in rats that chronic cannabinoid exposure activates VTA cannabinoid CB1 receptors to induce transient neurotransmission depression at VTA local Glu-DA synapses through activation of NMDA receptors and subsequent endocytosis of AMPA receptor GluR2 subunits. A GluR2-derived peptide blocks cannabinoid-induced VTA synaptic depression and conditioned place preference, i.e., learning to associate drug exposure with environmental cues. These data not only provide the first evidence, to our knowledge, that NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic depression at VTA dopamine circuitry requires GluR2 endocytosis, but also suggest an essential contribution of such synaptic depression to cannabinoid-associated addictive learning, in addition to pointing to novel pharmacological strategies for the treatment of cannabis addiction.

  16. MiR-134-dependent regulation of Pumilio-2 is necessary for homeostatic synaptic depression

    OpenAIRE

    Fiore, Roberto; Rajman, Marek; Schwale, Chrysovalandis; Bicker, Silvia; Antoniou, Anna; Bruehl, Claus; Draguhn, Andreas; Schratt, Gerhard

    2014-01-01

    Neurons employ a set of homeostatic plasticity mechanisms to counterbalance altered levels of network activity. The molecular mechanisms underlying homeostatic plasticity in response to increased network excitability are still poorly understood. Here, we describe a sequential homeostatic synaptic depression mechanism in primary hippocampal neurons involving miRNA-dependent translational regulation. This mechanism consists of an initial phase of synapse elimination followed by a reinforcing ph...

  17. Synaptic remodeling generates synchronous oscillations in the degenerated outer mouse retina

    OpenAIRE

    Wadood eHaq; Blanca eArango-Gonzalez; Eberhart eZrenner; Thomas eEuler; Timm eSchubert

    2014-01-01

    During neuronal degenerative diseases, neuronal microcircuits undergo severe structural alterations, leading to remodeling of synaptic connectivity. The functional consequences of such remodeling are mostly unknown. For instance, in mutant rd1 mouse retina, a common model for Retinitis Pigmentosa, rod bipolar cells (RBCs) establish contacts with remnant cone photoreceptors (cones) as a consequence of rod photoreceptor cell death and the resulting lack of presynaptic input. To assess the funct...

  18. Flexible Proton-Gated Oxide Synaptic Transistors on Si Membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Li Qiang; Wan, Chang Jin; Gao, Ping Qi; Liu, Yang Hui; Xiao, Hui; Ye, Ji Chun; Wan, Qing

    2016-08-24

    Ion-conducting materials have received considerable attention for their applications in fuel cells, electrochemical devices, and sensors. Here, flexible indium zinc oxide (InZnO) synaptic transistors with multiple presynaptic inputs gated by proton-conducting phosphorosilicate glass-based electrolyte films are fabricated on ultrathin Si membranes. Transient characteristics of the proton gated InZnO synaptic transistors are investigated, indicating stable proton-gating behaviors. Short-term synaptic plasticities are mimicked on the proposed proton-gated synaptic transistors. Furthermore, synaptic integration regulations are mimicked on the proposed synaptic transistor networks. Spiking logic modulations are realized based on the transition between superlinear and sublinear synaptic integration. The multigates coupled flexible proton-gated oxide synaptic transistors may be interesting for neuroinspired platforms with sophisticated spatiotemporal information processing. PMID:27471861

  19. Optogenetic fMRI in the mouse hippocampus: Hemodynamic response to brief glutamatergic stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebhardt, Philipp; Hohenberg, Christian Clemm von; Weber-Fahr, Wolfgang; Kelsch, Wolfgang; Sartorius, Alexander

    2016-03-01

    The combination of optogenetics with functional magnetic resonance imaging is a promising tool to study the causal relationship between specific neuronal populations and global brain activity. We employed this technique to study the brain response to recruitment of glutamatergic neurons in the mouse hippocampus. The light-sensitive protein channelrhodopsin-2 was expressed in α-CamKII-positive glutamatergic neurons in the left hippocampus (N = 10). Functional magnetic resonance imaging was performed during local laser stimulation, with stimulus duration of 1 second. The hemodynamic response to these stimuli was analyzed on a whole-brain level. In a secondary analysis, we examined the impact of the stimulation locus on the dorso-ventral axis within the hippocampal formation. The hemodynamic response in the mouse hippocampus had an earlier peak and a shorter duration compared to those observed in humans. Photostimulation was associated with significantly increased blood oxygen level-dependent signal in group statistics: bilaterally in the hippocampus, frontal lobe and septum, ipsilaterally in the nucleus accumbens and contralaterally in the striatum. More dorsal position of the laser fiber was associated with a stronger activation in projection regions (insular cortex and striatum). The characterization of brain-region-specific hemodynamic response functions may enable more precise interpretation of future functional magnetic resonance imaging experiments. PMID:26661158

  20. Targeting the Glutamatergic System to Treat Pathological Gambling: Current Evidence and Future Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauro Pettorruso

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Pathological gambling or gambling disorder has been defined by the DSM-5 as a behavioral addiction. To date, its pathophysiology is not completely understood and there is no FDA-approved treatment for gambling disorders. Glutamate is the principal excitatory neurotransmitter in the nervous system and it has been recently involved in the pathophysiology of addictive behaviors. In this paper, we review the current literature on a class of drugs that act as modulating glutamate system in PG. A total of 19 studies have been included, according to inclusion and exclusion criteria. Clinical trial and case series using glutamatergic drugs (N-acetylcysteine, memantine, amantadine, topiramate, acamprosate, baclofen, gabapentin, pregabalin, and modafinil will be presented to elucidate the effectiveness on gambling behaviors and on the related clinical dimensions (craving, withdrawal, and cognitive symptoms in PG patients. The results have been discussed to gain more insight in the pathophysiology and treatment of PG. In conclusion, manipulation of glutamatergic neurotransmission appears to be promising in developing improved therapeutic agents for the treatment of gambling disorders. Further studies are required. Finally, we propose future directions and challenges in this research area.

  1. Improving treatment of patients with schizophrenia - glutamatergic and GABAergic disturbances as possible markers of choice-of-treatment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bojesen, Kirsten Borup; Jessen, Kasper; Rostrup, Egill;

    the progressive loss of brain tissue and functions seen in many patients. The neurotransmitter gamma-amino-butyric-acid, (GABA), regulates levels of glutamate, and hypofunctional GABAergic interneurons may cause the high levels of glutamate in patients with schizophrenia. Objectives: To test the hypothesis...... medication modulating glutamatergic and GABAergic disturbances and lead to better prevention strategies for the progressive loss of brain tissue and functions. Lastly, it is the hope that glutamatergic disturbances in the future can be used as a clinical marker for best choice of treatment in the clinical...

  2. Switching from Contextual to Tone Fear Conditioning and Vice Versa: The Key Role of the Glutamatergic Hippocampal-Lateral Septal Neurotransmission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calandreau, Ludovic; Desgranges, Bertrand; Jaffard, Robert; Desmedt, Aline

    2010-01-01

    The aim of the present experiment was to directly assess the role of the glutamatergic hippocampal-lateral septal (HPC-LS) neurotransmission in tone and contextual fear conditioning. We found that pretraining infusion of glutamatergic acid into the lateral septum promotes tone conditioning and concomitantly disrupts contextual conditioning.…

  3. GABA FUNCTION IS ALTERED FOLLOWING DEVELOPMENTAL HYPOTHYROIDISM: NEUROANATOMICAL AND NEUROPHYSIOLOGICAL EVIDENCE.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thyroid hormone deficiency during development produces changes in the structure of neurons and glial cells and alters synaptic function in the hippocampus. GABAergic interneurons comprise the bulk of local inhibitory neuronal circuitry and a subpopulation of these interneurons ...

  4. P2X Receptors and Synaptic Plasticity

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pankratov, Y.; Lalo, U.; Krishtal, A.; Verkhratsky, Alexei

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 158, č. 1 (2009), s. 137-148. ISSN 0306-4522 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50390512 Keywords : ATP * P2X receptors * synaptic plasticity Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 3.292, year: 2009

  5. Retinal synaptic regeneration via microfluidic guiding channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Ping-Jung; Liu, Zongbin; Zhang, Kai; Han, Xin; Saito, Yuki; Xia, Xiaojun; Yokoi, Kenji; Shen, Haifa; Qin, Lidong

    2015-01-01

    In vitro culture of dissociated retinal neurons is an important model for investigating retinal synaptic regeneration (RSR) and exploring potentials in artificial retina. Here, retinal precursor cells were cultured in a microfluidic chip with multiple arrays of microchannels in order to reconstruct the retinal neuronal synapse. The cultured retinal cells were physically connected through microchannels. Activation of electric signal transduction by the cells through the microchannels was demonstrated by administration of glycinergic factors. In addition, an image-based analytical method was used to quantify the synaptic connections and to assess the kinetics of synaptic regeneration. The rate of RSR decreased significantly below 100 μM of inhibitor glycine and then approached to a relatively constant level at higher concentrations. Furthermore, RSR was enhanced by chemical stimulation with potassium chloride. Collectively, the microfluidic synaptic regeneration chip provides a novel tool for high-throughput investigation of RSR at the cellular level and may be useful in quality control of retinal precursor cell transplantation. PMID:26314276

  6. Synaptic plasticity and the warburg effect

    KAUST Repository

    Magistretti, Pierre J.

    2014-01-01

    Functional brain imaging studies show that in certain brain regions glucose utilization exceeds oxygen consumption, indicating the predominance of aerobic glycolysis. In this issue, Goyal et al. (2014) report that this metabolic profile is associated with an enrichment in the expression of genes involved in synaptic plasticity and remodeling processes. © 2014 Elsevier Inc.

  7. Fragile X mental retardation protein and synaptic plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Sidorov, Michael S.; Auerbach, Benjamin D.; Bear, Mark F.

    2013-01-01

    Loss of the translational repressor FMRP causes Fragile X syndrome. In healthy neurons, FMRP modulates the local translation of numerous synaptic proteins. Synthesis of these proteins is required for the maintenance and regulation of long-lasting changes in synaptic strength. In this role as a translational inhibitor, FMRP exerts profound effects on synaptic plasticity.

  8. Bilinearity in spatiotemporal integration of synaptic inputs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Songting Li

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Neurons process information via integration of synaptic inputs from dendrites. Many experimental results demonstrate dendritic integration could be highly nonlinear, yet few theoretical analyses have been performed to obtain a precise quantitative characterization analytically. Based on asymptotic analysis of a two-compartment passive cable model, given a pair of time-dependent synaptic conductance inputs, we derive a bilinear spatiotemporal dendritic integration rule. The summed somatic potential can be well approximated by the linear summation of the two postsynaptic potentials elicited separately, plus a third additional bilinear term proportional to their product with a proportionality coefficient [Formula: see text]. The rule is valid for a pair of synaptic inputs of all types, including excitation-inhibition, excitation-excitation, and inhibition-inhibition. In addition, the rule is valid during the whole dendritic integration process for a pair of synaptic inputs with arbitrary input time differences and input locations. The coefficient [Formula: see text] is demonstrated to be nearly independent of the input strengths but is dependent on input times and input locations. This rule is then verified through simulation of a realistic pyramidal neuron model and in electrophysiological experiments of rat hippocampal CA1 neurons. The rule is further generalized to describe the spatiotemporal dendritic integration of multiple excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs. The integration of multiple inputs can be decomposed into the sum of all possible pairwise integration, where each paired integration obeys the bilinear rule. This decomposition leads to a graph representation of dendritic integration, which can be viewed as functionally sparse.

  9. Dysregulated Expression of Neuregulin-1 by Cortical Pyramidal Neurons Disrupts Synaptic Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amit Agarwal

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Neuregulin-1 (NRG1 gene variants are associated with increased genetic risk for schizophrenia. It is unclear whether risk haplotypes cause elevated or decreased expression of NRG1 in the brains of schizophrenia patients, given that both findings have been reported from autopsy studies. To study NRG1 functions in vivo, we generated mouse mutants with reduced and elevated NRG1 levels and analyzed the impact on cortical functions. Loss of NRG1 from cortical projection neurons resulted in increased inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, and hypoactivity. Neuronal overexpression of cysteine-rich domain (CRD-NRG1, the major brain isoform, caused unbalanced excitatory-inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, abnormal spine growth, altered steady-state levels of synaptic plasticity-related proteins, and impaired sensorimotor gating. We conclude that an “optimal” level of NRG1 signaling balances excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission in the cortex. Our data provide a potential pathomechanism for impaired synaptic plasticity and suggest that human NRG1 risk haplotypes exert a gain-of-function effect.

  10. INVOLVEMENT OF SYNAPTIC GENES IN THE PATHOGENESIS OF AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS: THE CASE OF SYNAPSINS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia eGiovedi

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs are heterogeneous neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by deficits in social interaction and social communication, restricted interests and repetitive behaviors. Many synaptic protein genes are linked to the pathogenesis of ASDs, making them prototypical synaptopathies. An array of mutations in the synapsin (Syn genes in humans have been recently associated with ASD and epilepsy, diseases that display a frequent comorbidity. Synapsins are presynaptic proteins regulating synaptic vesicle traffic, neurotransmitter release and short-term synaptic plasticity. In doing so, Syn isoforms control the tone of activity of neural circuits and the balance between excitation and inhibition. As ASD pathogenesis is believed to result from dysfunctions in the balance between excitatory and inhibitory transmissions in neocortical areas, Syns are novel ASD candidate genes. Accordingly, deletion of single Syn genes in mice, in addition to epilepsy, causes core symptoms of ASD by affecting social behavior, social communication and repetitive behaviors. Thus, Syn knockout mice represent a good experimental model to define synaptic alterations involved in the pathogenesis of ASD and epilepsy.

  11. The Structure of Neurexin 1[alpha] Reveals Features Promoting a Role as Synaptic Organizer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chen, Fang; Venugopal, Vandavasi; Murray, Beverly; Rudenko, Gabby (Michigan)

    2014-10-02

    {alpha}-Neurexins are essential synaptic adhesion molecules implicated in autism spectrum disorder and schizophrenia. The {alpha}-neurexin extracellular domain consists of six LNS domains interspersed by three EGF-like repeats and interacts with many different proteins in the synaptic cleft. To understand how {alpha}-neurexins might function as synaptic organizers, we solved the structure of the neurexin 1{alpha} extracellular domain (n1{alpha}) to 2.65 {angstrom}. The L-shaped molecule can be divided into a flexible repeat I (LNS1-EGF-A-LNS2), a rigid horseshoe-shaped repeat II (LNS3-EGF-B-LNS4) with structural similarity to so-called reelin repeats, and an extended repeat III (LNS5-EGF-B-LNS6) with controlled flexibility. A 2.95 {angstrom} structure of n1{alpha} carrying splice insert SS3 in LNS4 reveals that SS3 protrudes as a loop and does not alter the rigid arrangement of repeat II. The global architecture imposed by conserved structural features enables {alpha}-neurexins to recruit and organize proteins in distinct and variable ways, influenced by splicing, thereby promoting synaptic function.

  12. Prenatal immune activation causes hippocampal synaptic deficits in the absence of overt microglia anomalies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giovanoli, Sandra; Weber-Stadlbauer, Ulrike; Schedlowski, Manfred; Meyer, Urs; Engler, Harald

    2016-07-01

    Prenatal exposure to infectious or inflammatory insults can increase the risk of developing neuropsychiatric disorder in later life, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and autism. These brain disorders are also characterized by pre- and postsynaptic deficits. Using a well-established mouse model of maternal exposure to the viral mimetic polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidilic acid [poly(I:C)], we examined whether prenatal immune activation might cause synaptic deficits in the hippocampal formation of pubescent and adult offspring. Based on the widely appreciated role of microglia in synaptic pruning, we further explored possible associations between synaptic deficits and microglia anomalies in offspring of poly(I:C)-exposed and control mothers. We found that prenatal immune activation induced an adult onset of presynaptic hippocampal deficits (as evaluated by synaptophysin and bassoon density). The early-life insult further caused postsynaptic hippocampal deficits in pubescence (as evaluated by PSD95 and SynGAP density), some of which persisted into adulthood. In contrast, prenatal immune activation did not change microglia (or astrocyte) density, nor did it alter their activation phenotypes. The prenatal manipulation did also not cause signs of persistent systemic inflammation. Despite the absence of overt glial anomalies or systemic inflammation, adult offspring exposed to prenatal immune activation displayed increased hippocampal IL-1β levels. Taken together, our findings demonstrate that age-dependent synaptic deficits and abnormal pro-inflammatory cytokine expression can occur during postnatal brain maturation in the absence of microglial anomalies or systemic inflammation. PMID:26408796

  13. Dysregulated expression of neuregulin-1 by cortical pyramidal neurons disrupts synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agarwal, Amit; Zhang, Mingyue; Trembak-Duff, Irina; Unterbarnscheidt, Tilmann; Radyushkin, Konstantin; Dibaj, Payam; Martins de Souza, Daniel; Boretius, Susann; Brzózka, Magdalena M; Steffens, Heinz; Berning, Sebastian; Teng, Zenghui; Gummert, Maike N; Tantra, Martesa; Guest, Peter C; Willig, Katrin I; Frahm, Jens; Hell, Stefan W; Bahn, Sabine; Rossner, Moritz J; Nave, Klaus-Armin; Ehrenreich, Hannelore; Zhang, Weiqi; Schwab, Markus H

    2014-08-21

    Neuregulin-1 (NRG1) gene variants are associated with increased genetic risk for schizophrenia. It is unclear whether risk haplotypes cause elevated or decreased expression of NRG1 in the brains of schizophrenia patients, given that both findings have been reported from autopsy studies. To study NRG1 functions in vivo, we generated mouse mutants with reduced and elevated NRG1 levels and analyzed the impact on cortical functions. Loss of NRG1 from cortical projection neurons resulted in increased inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, and hypoactivity. Neuronal overexpression of cysteine-rich domain (CRD)-NRG1, the major brain isoform, caused unbalanced excitatory-inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, abnormal spine growth, altered steady-state levels of synaptic plasticity-related proteins, and impaired sensorimotor gating. We conclude that an "optimal" level of NRG1 signaling balances excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission in the cortex. Our data provide a potential pathomechanism for impaired synaptic plasticity and suggest that human NRG1 risk haplotypes exert a gain-of-function effect. PMID:25131210

  14. KV7 Channels Regulate Firing during Synaptic Integration in GABAergic Striatal Neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Belén Pérez-Ramírez

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Striatal projection neurons (SPNs process motor and cognitive information. Their activity is affected by Parkinson’s disease, in which dopamine concentration is decreased and acetylcholine concentration is increased. Acetylcholine activates muscarinic receptors in SPNs. Its main source is the cholinergic interneuron that responds with a briefer latency than SPNs during a cortical command. Therefore, an important question is whether muscarinic G-protein coupled receptors and their signaling cascades are fast enough to intervene during synaptic responses to regulate synaptic integration and firing. One of the most known voltage dependent channels regulated by muscarinic receptors is the KV7/KCNQ channel. It is not known whether these channels regulate the integration of suprathreshold corticostriatal responses. Here, we study the impact of cholinergic muscarinic modulation on the synaptic response of SPNs by regulating KV7 channels. We found that KV7 channels regulate corticostriatal synaptic integration and that this modulation occurs in the dendritic/spines compartment. In contrast, it is negligible in the somatic compartment. This modulation occurs on sub- and suprathreshold responses and lasts during the whole duration of the responses, hundreds of milliseconds, greatly altering SPNs firing properties. This modulation affected the behavior of the striatal microcircuit.

  15. Transient expression of functional serotonin 5-HT3 receptors by glutamatergic granule cells in the early postnatal mouse cerebellum

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M. Oostland; J. Sellmeijer; J.A. van Hooft

    2011-01-01

    The serotonin 5-HT3 receptor is the only ligand-gated ion channel activated by serotonin and is expressed by GABAergic interneurons in many brain regions, including the cortex, amygdala and hippocampus. Furthermore, 5-HT3 receptors are expressed by glutamatergic Cajal-Retzius cells in the cerebral c

  16. A Targeted Glycan-Related Gene Screen Reveals Heparan Sulfate Proteoglycan Sulfation Regulates WNT and BMP Trans-Synaptic Signaling

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

    A Drosophila transgenic RNAi screen targeting the glycan genome, including all N/O/GAG-glycan biosynthesis/modification enzymes and glycan-binding lectins, was conducted to discover novel glycan functions in synaptogenesis. As proof-of-product, we characterized functionally paired heparan sulfate (HS) 6-O-sulfotransferase (hs6st) and sulfatase (sulf1), which bidirectionally control HS proteoglycan (HSPG) sulfation. RNAi knockdown of hs6st and sulf1 causes opposite effects on functional synapse development, with decreased (hs6st) and increased (sulf1) neurotransmission strength confirmed in null mutants. HSPG co-receptors for WNT and BMP intercellular signaling, Dally-like Protein and Syndecan, are differentially misregulated in the synaptomatrix of these mutants. Consistently, hs6st and sulf1 nulls differentially elevate both WNT (Wingless; Wg) and BMP (Glass Bottom Boat; Gbb) ligand abundance in the synaptomatrix. Anterograde Wg signaling via Wg receptor dFrizzled2 C-terminus nuclear import and retrograde Gbb signaling via synaptic MAD phosphorylation and nuclear import are differentially activated in hs6st and sulf1 mutants. Consequently, transcriptional control of presynaptic glutamate release machinery and postsynaptic glutamate receptors is bidirectionally altered in hs6st and sulf1 mutants, explaining the bidirectional change in synaptic functional strength. Genetic correction of the altered WNT/BMP signaling restores normal synaptic development in both mutant conditions, proving that altered trans-synaptic signaling causes functional differentiation defects. PMID:23144627

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neil Dani

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

  18. Multiple personalities: synaptic target cells as introverts and extroverts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritzenthaler, S; Chiba, A

    2001-10-01

    The intricate process of wiring a neuronetwork requires a high degree of accuracy in the communication between pre- and post-synaptic cells. While presynaptic cells have been widely recognized for their dynamic role in synaptic matchmaking, post-synaptic cells have historically been overlooked as passive targets. Recent studies in the Drosophila embryonic neuromuscular system provide compelling evidence that post-synaptic cells participate actively in the synaptogenic process. Endocytosis allows them to quickly modify the array of molecular cues they provide on their surfaces and the extension of dynamic filopodia allows post-synaptic cells to engage in direct long-distance communication. By making use of familiar cellular mechanisms such as endocytosis and filopodia formation, post-synaptic cells may be able to communicate more effectively with potential synaptic partners. PMID:11576167

  19. Proteomic analysis of membrane microdomain-associated proteins in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder reveals alterations in LAMP, STXBP1 and BASP1 protein expression.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Behan, A T

    2009-06-01

    The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlpfc) is strongly implicated in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia (SCZ) and bipolar disorder (BPD) and, within this region, abnormalities in glutamatergic neurotransmission and synaptic function have been described. Proteins associated with these functions are enriched in membrane microdomains (MM). In the current study, we used two complementary proteomic methods, two-dimensional difference gel electrophoresis and one-dimensional sodium dodecyl sulphate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis followed by reverse phase-liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (RP-LC-MS\\/MS) (gel separation liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (GeLC-MS\\/MS)) to assess protein expression in MM in pooled samples of dlpfc from SCZ, BPD and control cases (n=10 per group) from the Stanley Foundation Brain series. We identified 16 proteins altered in one\\/both disorders using proteomic methods. We selected three proteins with roles in synaptic function (syntaxin-binding protein 1 (STXBP1), brain abundant membrane-attached signal protein 1 (BASP1) and limbic system-associated membrane protein (LAMP)) for validation by western blotting. This revealed significantly increased expression of these proteins in SCZ (STXBP1 (24% difference; P<0.001), BASP1 (40% difference; P<0.05) and LAMP (22% difference; P<0.01)) and BPD (STXBP1 (31% difference; P<0.001), BASP1 (23% difference; P<0.01) and LAMP (20% difference; P<0.01)) in the Stanley brain series (n=20 per group). Further validation in dlpfc from the Harvard brain subseries (n=10 per group) confirmed increased protein expression in SCZ of STXBP1 (18% difference; P<0.0001), BASP1 (14% difference; P<0.0001) but not LAMP (20% difference; P=0.14). No significant differences in STXBP1, BASP1 or LAMP protein expression in BPD dlpfc were observed. This study, through proteomic assessments of MM in dlpfc and validation in two brain series, strongly implicates LAMP, STXBP1 and BASP1 in SCZ and supports

  20. Glutamatergic system controls synchronization of spontaneous neuronal activity in the murine neonatal entorhinal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unichenko, Petr; Yang, Jeng-Wei; Luhmann, Heiko J; Kirischuk, Sergei

    2015-07-01

    Synchronized spontaneous neuronal activity is a characteristic feature of the developing brain. Rhythmic network discharges in the neonatal medial entorhinal cortex (mEC) in vitro depend on activation of ionotropic glutamate receptors, but spontaneously active neurons are required for their initiation. Field potential recordings revealed synchronized neuronal activity in the mEC in vivo developmentally earlier than in vitro. We suggested that not only ionotropic receptors, but also other components of the glutamatergic system modulate neuronal activity in the mEC. Ca(2+) imaging was used to record neuronal activity in neonatal murine brain slices. Two types of spontaneous events were distinguished: global synchronous discharges (synchronous activity) and asynchronously (not synchronized with global discharges) active cells (asynchronous activity). AMPA receptor blockade strongly reduced the frequency of synchronous discharges, while NMDA receptor inhibition was less effective. AMPA and NMDA receptor blockade or activation of group 2/3 metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR2/3) completely suppressed synchronous discharges and increased the number of active cells. Blockade of glutamate transporters with DL-TBOA led to NMDA receptor-mediated hyper-synchronization of neuronal activity. Inhibition of NMDA receptors in the presence of DL-TBOA failed to restore synchronous discharges. The latter were partially reestablished only after blockade of mGluR2/3. We conclude that the glutamatergic system can influence neuronal activity via different receptors/mechanisms. As both NMDA and mGluR2/3 receptors have a high affinity for glutamate, changes in extracellular glutamate levels resulting for instance from glutamate transporter malfunction can balance neuronal activity in the mEC, affecting in turn synapse and network formation. PMID:25163767

  1. Endocannabinoid System and Synaptic Plasticity: Implications for Emotional Responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María-Paz Viveros

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available The endocannabinoid system has been involved in the regulation of anxiety, and proposed as an inhibitory modulator of neuronal, behavioral and adrenocortical responses to stressful stimuli. Brain regions such as the amygdala, hippocampus and cortex, which are directly involved in the regulation of emotional behavior, contain high densities of cannabinoid CB1 receptors. Mutant mice lacking CB1 receptors show anxiogenic and depressive-like behaviors as well as an altered hypothalamus pituitary adrenal axis activity, whereas enhancement of endocannabinoid signaling produces anxiolytic and antidepressant-like effects. Genetic and pharmacological approaches also support an involvement of endocannabinoids in extinction of aversive memories. Thus, the endocannabinoid system appears to play a pivotal role in the regulation of emotional states. Endocannabinoids have emerged as mediators of short- and long- term synaptic plasticity in diverse brain structures. Despite the fact that most of the studies on this field have been performed using in vitro models, endocannabinoid-mediated plasticity might be considered as a plausible candidate underlying some of the diverse physiological functions of the endogenous cannabinoid system, including developmental, affective and cognitive processes. In this paper, we will focus on the functional relevance of endocannabinoid-mediated plasticity within the framework of emotional responses. Alterations of the endocannabinoid system may constitute an important factor in the aetiology of certain neuropsychiatric disorders, and, in turn, enhancers of endocannabinoid signaling could represent a potential therapeutical tool in the treatment of both anxiety and depressive symptoms.

  2. Synaptic devices based on purely electronic memristors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pan, Ruobing [Ningbo Institute of Materials Technology and Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Ningbo 315201 (China); Institute of Materials Science, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Shanghai University, Shanghai 200072 (China); Li, Jun; Zhuge, Fei, E-mail: zhugefei@nimte.ac.cn, E-mail: h-cao@nimte.ac.cn; Zhu, Liqiang; Liang, Lingyan; Zhang, Hongliang; Gao, Junhua; Cao, Hongtao, E-mail: zhugefei@nimte.ac.cn, E-mail: h-cao@nimte.ac.cn; Fu, Bing; Li, Kang [Ningbo Institute of Materials Technology and Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Ningbo 315201 (China)

    2016-01-04

    Memristive devices have been widely employed to emulate biological synaptic behavior. In these cases, the memristive switching generally originates from electrical field induced ion migration or Joule heating induced phase change. In this letter, the Ti/ZnO/Pt structure was found to show memristive switching ascribed to a carrier trapping/detrapping of the trap sites (e.g., oxygen vacancies or zinc interstitials) in ZnO. The carrier trapping/detrapping level can be controllably adjusted by regulating the current compliance level or voltage amplitude. Multi-level conductance states can, therefore, be realized in such memristive device. The spike-timing-dependent plasticity, an important Hebbian learning rule, has been implemented in this type of synaptic device. Compared with filamentary-type memristive devices, purely electronic memristors have potential to reduce their energy consumption and work more stably and reliably, since no structural distortion occurs.

  3. Filamentary Switching: Synaptic Plasticity through Device Volatility

    CERN Document Server

    La Barbera, Selina; Alibart, Fabien

    2015-01-01

    Replicating the computational functionalities and performances of the brain remains one of the biggest challenges for the future of information and communication technologies. Such an ambitious goal requires research efforts from the architecture level to the basic device level (i.e., investigating the opportunities offered by emerging nanotechnologies to build such systems). Nanodevices, or, more precisely, memory or memristive devices, have been proposed for the implementation of synaptic functions, offering the required features and integration in a single component. In this paper, we demonstrate that the basic physics involved in the filamentary switching of electrochemical metallization cells can reproduce important biological synaptic functions that are key mechanisms for information processing and storage. The transition from short- to long-term plasticity has been reported as a direct consequence of filament growth (i.e., increased conductance) in filamentary memory devices. In this paper, we show tha...

  4. Synaptic devices based on purely electronic memristors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Memristive devices have been widely employed to emulate biological synaptic behavior. In these cases, the memristive switching generally originates from electrical field induced ion migration or Joule heating induced phase change. In this letter, the Ti/ZnO/Pt structure was found to show memristive switching ascribed to a carrier trapping/detrapping of the trap sites (e.g., oxygen vacancies or zinc interstitials) in ZnO. The carrier trapping/detrapping level can be controllably adjusted by regulating the current compliance level or voltage amplitude. Multi-level conductance states can, therefore, be realized in such memristive device. The spike-timing-dependent plasticity, an important Hebbian learning rule, has been implemented in this type of synaptic device. Compared with filamentary-type memristive devices, purely electronic memristors have potential to reduce their energy consumption and work more stably and reliably, since no structural distortion occurs

  5. Oridonin Attenuates Synaptic Loss and Cognitive Deficits in an Aβ1-42-Induced Mouse Model of Alzheimer's Disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sulei Wang

    Full Text Available Synaptic loss induced by beta-amyloid (Aβ plays a critical role in the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease (AD, but the mechanisms underlying this process remain unknown. In this study, we found that oridonin (Ori rescued synaptic loss induced by Aβ1-42 in vivo and in vitro and attenuated the alterations in dendritic structure and spine density observed in the hippocampus of AD mice. In addition, Ori increased the expression of PSD-95 and synaptophysin and promoted mitochondrial activity in the synaptosomes of AD mice. Ori also activated the BDNF/TrkB/CREB signaling pathway in the hippocampus of AD mice. Furthermore, in the Morris water maze test, Ori reduced latency and searching distance and increased the number of platform crosses in AD mice. These data suggest that Ori might prevent synaptic loss and improve behavioral symptoms in Aβ1-42-induced AD mice.

  6. Gender differences in human cortical synaptic density

    OpenAIRE

    Alonso-Nanclares, L.; Gonzalez-Soriano, J.; Rodriguez, J. R.; DeFelipe, J

    2008-01-01

    Certain cognitive functions differ in men and women, although the anatomical and functional substrates underlying these differences remain unknown. Because neocortical activity is directly related with higher brain function, numerous studies have focused on the cerebral cortex when searching for possible structural correlates of cognitive gender differences. However, there are no studies on possible gender differences at the synaptic level. In the present work we have used stereological and c...

  7. Morphological plasticity of astroglia: Understanding synaptic microenvironment

    OpenAIRE

    Heller, J. P.; Rusakov, D. A.

    2015-01-01

    Memory formation in the brain is thought to rely on the remodeling of synaptic connections which eventually results in neural network rewiring. This remodeling is likely to involve ultrathin astroglial protrusions which often occur in the immediate vicinity of excitatory synapses. The phenomenology, cellular mechanisms, and causal relationships of such astroglial restructuring remain, however, poorly understood. This is in large part because monitoring and probing of the underpinning molecula...

  8. Signaling for Vesicle Mobilization and Synaptic Plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Levitan, Edwin S.

    2008-01-01

    The hypothesis that release of classical neurotransmitters and neuropeptides is facilitated by increasing the mobility of small synaptic vesicles (SSVs) and dense core vesicles (DCVs) could not be tested until the advent of methods for visualizing these secretory vesicles in living nerve terminals. In fact, fluorescence imaging studies have only since 2005 established that activity increases secretory vesicle mobility in motoneuron terminals and chromaffin cells. Mobilization of DCVs and SSVs...

  9. Matrix metalloproteinases, synaptic injury, and multiple sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ArekSzklarczyk

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Multiple sclerosis (MS is a disease of the central nervous system in which immune mediated damage to myelin is characteristic. For an overview of this condition and its pathophysiology, please refer to one of many excellent published reviews. To follow, is a discussion focused on the possibility that synaptic injury occurs in at least a subset of patients, and that matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs play a role in such.

  10. Retinal synaptic regeneration via microfluidic guiding channels

    OpenAIRE

    Ping-Jung Su; Zongbin Liu; Kai Zhang; Xin Han; Yuki Saito; Xiaojun Xia; Kenji Yokoi; Haifa Shen; Lidong Qin

    2015-01-01

    In vitro culture of dissociated retinal neurons is an important model for investigating retinal synaptic regeneration (RSR) and exploring potentials in artificial retina. Here, retinal precursor cells were cultured in a microfluidic chip with multiple arrays of microchannels in order to reconstruct the retinal neuronal synapse. The cultured retinal cells were physically connected through microchannels. Activation of electric signal transduction by the cells through the microchannels was demon...

  11. Matrix Metalloproteinases, Synaptic Injury, and Multiple Sclerosis

    OpenAIRE

    Szklarczyk, Arek; Conant, Katherine

    2010-01-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease of the central nervous system in which immune mediated damage to myelin is characteristic. For an overview of this condition and its pathophysiology, please refer to one of many excellent published reviews (Sorensen and Ransohoff, 1998; Weiner, 2009). To follow, is a discussion focused on the possibility that synaptic injury occurs in at least a subset of patients, and that matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) play a role in such.

  12. β-Hydroxybutyrate supports synaptic vesicle cycling but reduces endocytosis and exocytosis in rat brain synaptosomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hrynevich, Sviatlana V; Waseem, Tatyana V; Hébert, Audrey; Pellerin, Luc; Fedorovich, Sergei V

    2016-02-01

    The ketogenic diet is used as a prophylactic treatment for different types of brain diseases, such as epilepsy or Alzheimer's disease. In such a diet, carbohydrates are replaced by fats in everyday food, resulting in an elevation of blood-borne ketone bodies levels. Despite clinical applications of this treatment, the molecular mechanisms by which the ketogenic diet exerts its beneficial effects are still uncertain. In this study, we investigated the effect of replacing glucose by the ketone body β-hydroxybutyrate as the main energy substrate on synaptic vesicle recycling in rat brain synaptosomes. First, we observed that exposing presynaptic terminals to nonglycolytic energy substrates instead of glucose did not alter the plasma membrane potential. Next, we found that synaptosomes were able to maintain the synaptic vesicle cycle monitored with the fluorescent dye acridine orange when glucose was replaced by β-hydroxybutyrate. However, in presence of β-hydroxybutyrate, synaptic vesicle recycling was modified with reduced endocytosis. Replacing glucose by pyruvate also led to a reduced endocytosis. Addition of β-hydroxybutyrate to glucose-containing incubation medium was without effect. Reduced endocytosis in presence of β-hydroxybutyrate as sole energy substrate was confirmed using the fluorescent dye FM2-10. Also we found that replacement of glucose by ketone bodies leads to inhibition of exocytosis, monitored by FM2-10. However this reduction was smaller than the effect on endocytosis under the same conditions. Using both acridine orange in synaptosomes and the genetically encoded sensor synaptopHluorin in cortical neurons, we observed that replacing glucose by β-hydroxybutyrate did not modify the pH gradient of synaptic vesicles. In conclusion, the nonglycolytic energy substrates β-hydroxybutyrate and pyruvate are able to support synaptic vesicle recycling. However, they both reduce endocytosis. Reduction of both endocytosis and exocytosis together with

  13. Chronic Treatment with a Clinically Relevant Dose of Methylphenidate Increases Glutamate Levels in Cerebrospinal Fluid and Impairs Glutamatergic Homeostasis in Prefrontal Cortex of Juvenile Rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitz, Felipe; Pierozan, Paula; Rodrigues, André F; Biasibetti, Helena; Coelho, Daniella M; Mussulini, Ben Hur; Pereira, Mery S L; Parisi, Mariana M; Barbé-Tuana, Florencia; de Oliveira, Diogo L; Vargas, Carmen R; Wyse, Angela T S

    2016-05-01

    The understanding of the consequences of chronic treatment with methylphenidate is very important since this psychostimulant is extensively prescribed to preschool age children, and little is known about the mechanisms underlying the persistent changes in behavior and neuronal function related with the use of methylphenidate. In this study, we initially investigate the effect of early chronic treatment with methylphenidate on amino acids profile in cerebrospinal fluid and prefrontal cortex of juvenile rats, as well as on glutamatergic homeostasis, Na(+),K(+)-ATPase function, and balance redox in prefrontal cortex of rats. Wistar rats at early age received intraperitoneal injections of methylphenidate (2.0 mg/kg) or an equivalent volume of 0.9 % saline solution (controls), once a day, from the 15th to the 45th day of age. Twenty-four hours after the last injection, the animals were decapitated and the cerebrospinal fluid and prefrontal cortex were obtained. Results showed that methylphenidate altered amino acid profile in cerebrospinal fluid, increasing the levels of glutamate. Glutamate uptake was decreased by methylphenidate administration, but GLAST and GLT-1 were not altered by this treatment. In addition, the astrocyte marker GFAP was not altered by MPH. The activity and immunocontent of catalytic subunits (α1, α2, and α3) of Na(+),K(+)-ATPase were decreased in prefrontal cortex of rats subjected to methylphenidate treatment, as well as changes in α1 and α2 gene expression of catalytic α subunits of Na(+),K(+)-ATPase were also observed. CAT activity was increased and SOD/CAT ratio and sulfhydryl content were decreased in rat prefrontal cortex. Taken together, our results suggest that chronic treatment with methylphenidate at early age induces excitotoxicity, at least in part, due to inhibition of glutamate uptake probably caused by disturbances in the Na(+),K(+)-ATPase function and/or in protein damage observed in the prefrontal cortex. PMID:26001762

  14. Synaptic theory of Replicator-like melioration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yonatan Loewenstein

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available According to the theory of Melioration, organisms in repeated choice settings shift their choice preference in favor of the alternative that provides the highest return. The goal of this paper is to explain how this learning behavior can emerge from microscopic changes in the efficacies of synapses, in the context of two-alternative repeated-choice experiment. I consider a large family of synaptic plasticity rules in which changes in synaptic efficacies are driven by the covariance between reward and neural activity. I construct a general framework that predicts the learning dynamics of any decision-making neural network that implements this synaptic plasticity rule and show that melioration naturally emerges in such networks. Moreover, the resultant learning dynamics follows the Replicator equation which is commonly used to phenomenologically describe changes in behavior in operant conditioning experiments. Several examples demonstrate how the learning rate of the network is affected by its properties and by the specifics of the plasticity rule. These results help bridge the gap between cellular physiology and learning behavior.

  15. Characterization and extraction of the synaptic apposition surface for synaptic geometry analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales, Juan; Rodríguez, Angel; Rodríguez, José-Rodrigo; DeFelipe, Javier; Merchán-Pérez, Angel

    2013-01-01

    Geometrical features of chemical synapses are relevant to their function. Two critical components of the synaptic junction are the active zone (AZ) and the postsynaptic density (PSD), as they are related to the probability of synaptic release and the number of postsynaptic receptors, respectively. Morphological studies of these structures are greatly facilitated by the use of recent electron microscopy techniques, such as combined focused ion beam milling and scanning electron microscopy (FIB/SEM), and software tools that permit reconstruction of large numbers of synapses in three dimensions. Since the AZ and the PSD are in close apposition and have a similar surface area, they can be represented by a single surface—the synaptic apposition surface (SAS). We have developed an efficient computational technique to automatically extract this surface from synaptic junctions that have previously been three-dimensionally reconstructed from actual tissue samples imaged by automated FIB/SEM. Given its relationship with the release probability and the number of postsynaptic receptors, the surface area of the SAS is a functionally relevant measure of the size of a synapse that can complement other geometrical features like the volume of the reconstructed synaptic junction, the equivalent ellipsoid size and the Feret's diameter. PMID:23847474

  16. Characterization and extraction of the synaptic apposition surface for synaptic geometry analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Morales

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Geometrical features of chemical synapses are relevant to their function. Two critical components of the synaptic junction are the active zone and the postsynaptic density, as they are related to the probability of synaptic release and the number of postsynaptic receptors, respectively. Morphological studies of these structures are greatly facilitated by the use of recent electron microscopy techniques, such as combined focused ion beam milling and scanning electron microscopy (FIB/SEM, and software tools that permit reconstruction of large numbers of synapses in three dimensions. Since the active zone and the postsynaptic density are in close apposition and have a similar surface area, they can be represented by a single surface — the synaptic apposition surface (SAS. We have developed an efficient computational technique to automatically extract this surface from synaptic junctions that have previously been three-dimensionally reconstructed from actual tissue samples imaged by automated FIB/SEM. Given its relationship with the release probability and the number of postsynaptic receptors, the surface area of the SAS is a functionally relevant measure of the size of a synapse that can complement other geometrical features like the volume of the reconstructed synaptic junction, the equivalent ellipsoid size and the Feret’s diameter.

  17. Synaptic and blood-brain barrier structural changes in a rat epilepsy model induced by coriaria lacton

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jiyan Cheng; Jichun Huang; Yi Han; Guangyi Liu; Ling Yin; Furong Zheng

    2008-01-01

    synaptic interface, length of active zones, thickness of postsynaptic density, and percentage of perforation synapses increased significantly. ②There was significant edema in the endothelium, basement membrane, and the pericyte of the epilepsy group; the electron density of the basement membrane was reduced.CONCLUSION: ①The coriaria lacton treatment altered synaptic ultrastructure, as well as BBB characteristics, in the epileptic rat model, and also improved synaptic transmission efficiency, as well as BBB permeability; ②Synaptic and BBB ultrastructural changes might play an important role in the mechanism of epilepsy.

  18. Minocycline, a microglial inhibitor, blocks spinal CCL2-induced heat hyperalgesia and augmentation of glutamatergic transmission in substantia gelatinosa neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Background Several lines of evidence suggest that CCL2 could initiate the hyperalgesia of neuropathic pain by causing central sensitization of spinal dorsal horn neurons and facilitating nociceptive transmission in the spinal dorsal horn. The cellular and molecular mechanisms by which CCL2 enhances spinal pain transmission and causes hyperalgesia remain unknown. The substantia gelatinosa (lamina II) of the spinal dorsal horn plays a critical role in nociceptive transmission. An activated spinal microglia, which is believed to release pro-inflammatory cytokines including TNF-α, plays an important role in the development of neuropathic pain, and CCL2 is a key mediator for spinal microglia activation. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that spinal CCL2 causes the central sensitization of substantia gelatinosa neurons and enhances spinal nociceptive transmission by activating the spinal microglia and augmenting glutamatergic transmission in lamina II neurons. Methods CCL2 was intrathecally administered to 2-month-old male rats. An intrathecal injection of CCL2 induced heat hyperalgesia, which was assessed using the hot plate test. Whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings substantia gelatinosa neurons in spinal cord slices were performed to record glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) and GABAergic inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs). Results The hot plate test showed that 1 day after the intrathecal injection of CCL2 (1 μg), the latency of hind-paw withdrawal caused by a heat stimulus was significantly reduced in rats. One day after the intrathecal administration of CCL2, the amplitude of the evoked glutamatergic EPSCs and the frequency of spontaneous glutamatergic miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs) were significantly increased in outer lamina II neurons. Intrathecal co-injection of minocycline, a specific inhibitor of microglial activation, and CCL2 blocked the CCL2-induced reduction in the latency of hind-paw withdrawal and thermal hyperalgesia

  19. Elimination of the vesicular acetylcholine transporter in the striatum reveals regulation of behaviour by cholinergic-glutamatergic co-transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guzman, Monica S; De Jaeger, Xavier; Raulic, Sanda; Souza, Ivana A; Li, Alex X; Schmid, Susanne; Menon, Ravi S; Gainetdinov, Raul R; Caron, Marc G; Bartha, Robert; Prado, Vania F; Prado, Marco A M

    2011-11-01

    Cholinergic neurons in the striatum are thought to play major regulatory functions in motor behaviour and reward. These neurons express two vesicular transporters that can load either acetylcholine or glutamate into synaptic vesicles. Consequently cholinergic neurons can release both neurotransmitters, making it difficult to discern their individual contributions for the regulation of striatal functions. Here we have dissected the specific roles of acetylcholine release for striatal-dependent behaviour in mice by selective elimination of the vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT) from striatal cholinergic neurons. Analysis of several behavioural parameters indicates that elimination of VAChT had only marginal consequences in striatum-related tasks and did not affect spontaneous locomotion, cocaine-induced hyperactivity, or its reward properties. However, dopaminergic sensitivity of medium spiny neurons (MSN) and the behavioural outputs in response to direct dopaminergic agonists were enhanced, likely due to increased expression/function of dopamine receptors in the striatum. These observations indicate that previous functions attributed to striatal cholinergic neurons in spontaneous locomotor activity and in the rewarding responses to cocaine are mediated by glutamate and not by acetylcholine release. Our experiments demonstrate how one population of neurons can use two distinct neurotransmitters to differentially regulate a given circuitry. The data also raise the possibility of using VAChT as a target to boost dopaminergic function and decrease high striatal cholinergic activity, common neurochemical alterations in individuals affected with Parkinson's disease. PMID:22087075

  20. Elimination of the vesicular acetylcholine transporter in the striatum reveals regulation of behaviour by cholinergic-glutamatergic co-transmission.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monica S Guzman

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Cholinergic neurons in the striatum are thought to play major regulatory functions in motor behaviour and reward. These neurons express two vesicular transporters that can load either acetylcholine or glutamate into synaptic vesicles. Consequently cholinergic neurons can release both neurotransmitters, making it difficult to discern their individual contributions for the regulation of striatal functions. Here we have dissected the specific roles of acetylcholine release for striatal-dependent behaviour in mice by selective elimination of the vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT from striatal cholinergic neurons. Analysis of several behavioural parameters indicates that elimination of VAChT had only marginal consequences in striatum-related tasks and did not affect spontaneous locomotion, cocaine-induced hyperactivity, or its reward properties. However, dopaminergic sensitivity of medium spiny neurons (MSN and the behavioural outputs in response to direct dopaminergic agonists were enhanced, likely due to increased expression/function of dopamine receptors in the striatum. These observations indicate that previous functions attributed to striatal cholinergic neurons in spontaneous locomotor activity and in the rewarding responses to cocaine are mediated by glutamate and not by acetylcholine release. Our experiments demonstrate how one population of neurons can use two distinct neurotransmitters to differentially regulate a given circuitry. The data also raise the possibility of using VAChT as a target to boost dopaminergic function and decrease high striatal cholinergic activity, common neurochemical alterations in individuals affected with Parkinson's disease.

  1. Repeated alcohol administration during adolescence causes changes in the mesolimbic dopaminergic and glutamatergic systems and promotes alcohol intake in the adult rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pascual, Maria; Boix, Jordi; Felipo, Vicente; Guerri, Consuelo

    2009-02-01

    Adolescence is a developmental period which the risk of drug and alcohol abuse increases. Since mesolimbic dopaminergic system undergoes developmental changes during adolescence, and this system is involved in rewarding effects of drugs of abuse, we addressed the hypothesis that ethanol exposure during juvenile/adolescent period over-activates mesolimbic dopaminergic system inducing adaptations which can trigger long-term enduring behavioural effects of alcohol abuse. We treated juvenile/adolescent or adult rats with ethanol (3 g/kg) for two-consecutive days at 48-h intervals over 14-day period. Here we show that intermittent ethanol treatment during the juvenile/adolescence period alters subsequent ethanol intake. In vivo microdialysis demonstrates that ethanol elicits a similar prolonged dopamine response in the nucleus accumbens of both adolescent and adult animals pre-treated with multiple doses of ethanol, although the basal dopamine levels were higher in ethanol-treated adolescents than in adult-treated animals. Repeated ethanol administration also down-regulates the expression of DRD2 and NMDAR2B phosphorylation in prefrontal cortex of adolescent animals, but not of adult rats. Finally, ethanol treatment during adolescence changes the acetylation of histones H3 and H4 in frontal cortex, nucleus accumbens and striatum, suggesting chromatin remodelling changes. In summary, our findings demonstrate the sensitivity of adolescent brain to ethanol effects on dopaminergic and glutamatergic neurotransmission, and suggest that abnormal plasticity in reward-related processes and epigenetic mechanisms could contribute to the vulnerability of adolescents to alcohol addiction. PMID:19077056

  2. CCL2-ethanol interactions and hippocampal synaptic protein expression in a transgenic mouse model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donna eGruol

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Chronic exposure to ethanol produces a number of detrimental effects on behavior. Neuroadaptive changes in brain structure or function underlie these behavioral changes and may be transient or persistent in nature. Central to the functional changes are alterations in the biology of neuronal and glial cells of the brain. Recent data show that ethanol induces glial cells of the brain to produce elevated levels of neuroimmune factors including CCL2, a key innate immune chemokine. Depending on the conditions of ethanol exposure, the upregulated levels of CCL2 can be transient or persistent and outlast the period of ethanol exposure. Importantly, results indicate that the upregulated levels of CCL2 may lead to CCL2-ethanol interactions that mediate or regulate the effects of ethanol on the brain. Glial cells are in close association with neurons and regulate many neuronal functions. Therefore, effects of ethanol on glial cells may underlie some of the effects of ethanol on neurons. To investigate this possibility, we are studying the effects of chronic ethanol on hippocampal synaptic function in a transgenic mouse model that expresses elevated levels of CCL2 in the brain through enhanced glial expression, a situation know to occur in alcoholics. Both CCL2 and ethanol have been reported to alter synaptic function in the hippocampus. In the current study, we determined if interactions are evident between CCL2 and ethanol at level of hippocampal synaptic proteins. Two ethanol exposure paradigms were used; the first involved ethanol exposure by drinking and the second involved ethanol exposure in a paradigm that combines drinking plus ethanol vapor. The first paradigm does not produce dependence on ethanol, whereas the second paradigm is commonly used to produce ethanol dependence. Results show modest effects of both ethanol exposure paradigms on the level of synaptic proteins in the hippocampus of CCL2 transgenic mice compared with their non

  3. Adenosine A₂A receptors in striatal glutamatergic terminals and GABAergic neurons oppositely modulate psychostimulant action and DARPP-32 phosphorylation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hai-Ying Shen

    Full Text Available Adenosine A2A receptors (A2AR are located postsynaptically in striatopallidal GABAergic neurons, antagonizing dopamine D2 receptor functions, and are also located presynaptically at corticostriatal terminals, facilitating glutamate release. To address the hypothesis that these two A2AR populations differently control the action of psychostimulants, we characterized A2AR modulation of cocaine-induced effects at the level of DARPP-32 phosphorylation at Thr-34 and Thr-75, c-Fos expression, and psychomotor activity using two lines of cell-type selective A2AR knockout (KO mice with selective A2AR deletion in GABAergic neurons (striatum-A2AR-KO mice, or with A2AR deletion in both striatal GABAergic neurons and projecting cortical glutamatergic neurons (forebrain-A2AR-KO mice. We demonstrated that striatum-A2AR KO mice lacked A2ARs exclusively in striatal GABAergic terminals whereas forebrain-A2AR KO mice lacked A2ARs in both striatal GABAergic and glutamatergic terminals leading to a blunted A2AR-mediated facilitation of synaptosomal glutamate release. The inactivation of A2ARs in GABAergic neurons reduced striatal DARPP-32 phosphorylation at Thr-34 and increased its phosphorylation at Thr-75. Conversely, the additional deletion of corticostriatal glutamatergic A2ARs produced opposite effects on DARPP-32 phosphorylation at Thr-34 and Thr-75. This distinct modulation of DARPP-32 phosphorylation was associated with opposite responses to cocaine-induced striatal c-Fos expression and psychomotor activity in striatum-A2AR KO (enhanced and forebrain-A2AR KO mice (reduced. Thus, A2ARs in glutamatergic corticostriatal terminals and in GABAergic striatal neurons modulate the action of psychostimulants and DARPP-32 phosphorylation in opposite ways. We conclude that A2ARs in glutamatergic terminals prominently control the action of psychostimulants and define a novel mechanism by which A2ARs fine-tune striatal activity by integrating GABAergic, dopaminergic and

  4. Similar oxysterols may lead to opposite effects on synaptic transmission: Olesoxime versus 5α-cholestan-3-one at the frog neuromuscular junction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasimov, M R; Zakyrjanova, G F; Giniatullin, A R; Zefirov, A L; Petrov, A M

    2016-07-01

    Cholesterol oxidation products frequently have a high biological activity. In the present study, we have used microelectrode recording of end plate currents and FM-based optical detection of synaptic vesicle exo-endocytosis to investigate the effects of two structurally similar oxysterols, olesoxime (cholest-4-en-3-one, oxime) and 5ɑ-cholestan-3-one (5ɑCh3), on neurotransmission at the frog neuromuscular junction. Olesoxime is an exogenous, potentially neuroprotective, substance and 5ɑCh3 is an intermediate product in cholesterol metabolism, which is elevated in the case of cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis. We found that olesoxime slightly increased evoked neurotransmitter release in response to a single stimulus and significantly reduced synaptic depression during high frequency activity. The last effect was due to an increase in both the number of synaptic vesicles involved in exo-endocytosis and the rate of synaptic vesicle recycling. In contrast, 5ɑCh3 reduced evoked neurotransmitter release during the low- and high frequency synaptic activities. The depressant action of 5ɑCh3 was associated with a reduction in the number of synaptic vesicles participating in exo- and endocytosis during high frequency stimulation, without a change in rate of the synaptic vesicle recycling. Of note, olesoxime increased the staining of synaptic membranes with the B-subunit of cholera toxin and the formation of fluorescent ganglioside GM1 clusters, and decreased the fluorescence of 22-NBD-cholesterol, while 5ɑCh3 had the opposite effects, suggesting that the two oxysterols have different effects on lipid raft stability. Taken together, these data show that these two structurally similar oxysterols induce marked different changes in neuromuscular transmission which are related with the alteration in synaptic vesicle cycle. PMID:27102612

  5. Synaptic Contacts Enhance Cell-to-Cell Tau Pathology Propagation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Calafate

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Accumulation of insoluble Tau protein aggregates and stereotypical propagation of Tau pathology through the brain are common hallmarks of tauopathies, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Propagation of Tau pathology appears to occur along connected neurons, but whether synaptic contacts between neurons are facilitating propagation has not been demonstrated. Using quantitative in vitro models, we demonstrate that, in parallel to non-synaptic mechanisms, synapses, but not merely the close distance between the cells, enhance the propagation of Tau pathology between acceptor hippocampal neurons and Tau donor cells. Similarly, in an artificial neuronal network using microfluidic devices, synapses and synaptic activity are promoting neuronal Tau pathology propagation in parallel to the non-synaptic mechanisms. Our work indicates that the physical presence of synaptic contacts between neurons facilitate Tau pathology propagation. These findings can have implications for synaptic repair therapies, which may turn out to have adverse effects by promoting propagation of Tau pathology.

  6. Emotional enhancement of memory: how norepinephrine enables synaptic plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Tully Keith; Bolshakov Vadim Y

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Changes in synaptic strength are believed to underlie learning and memory. We explore the idea that norepinephrine is an essential modulator of memory through its ability to regulate synaptic mechanisms. Emotional arousal leads to activation of the locus coeruleus with the subsequent release of norepineprine in the brain, resulting in the enhancement of memory. Norepinephrine activates both pre- and post-synaptic adrenergic receptors at central synapses with different functional outc...

  7. The impact of synapsins on synaptic plasticity and cognitive behaviors

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lin ZHANG; Zhong-Xin ZHAO

    2006-01-01

    Synapsins are a family of phosphoproteins specifically associated with the cytoplasmic surface of the synaptic vesicle membrane, appearing to regulate neurotransmitter release, the formation and maintenance of synaptic contacts.They could induce the change of the synaptic plasticity to regulate various adaptation reactions, and change the cognitive behaviors. So we presume that if some cognitive behavior are damaged, synapsins would be changed as well. This gives us a new recognition of better diagnosis and therapy of cognitive disorder desease.

  8. Synaptic tagging and capture in a biophysical model

    OpenAIRE

    Benjamin Auffarth

    2014-01-01

    There is wide consensus that synaptic plasticity (prominently long-term potentiation; LTP) is the underlying mechanism for learning and memory storage (cf Nabavi 2014). Open issues include the molecular pathways and networks and structural processes leading to functional and structural changes at the synaptic and dendritic levels in terms of channels and spines. Synaptic tagging and capture (STC; Frey and Morris 1997; Redondo and Morris 2011) is a predominant model for investigating LTP. Acco...

  9. Roles of Synaptic MAGUK Proteins in Analgesia and Anesthesia

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    TAO Yuan-xiang

    2004-01-01

    @@ In the central nervous system, synapses, highly specialized sites of contact between neurons, are organized to facilitate the transmission of signals from the pre-synaptic terminal to the postsynaptic membrane and to activate subsequent signal transduction cascades that result in appropriate cellular events. Efficient and precise organization of synaptic proteins such as receptors, ion channels, and signaling molecules at both pre-synaptic and postsynaptic membranes is critical for proper signal transmission.

  10. A Voltage Mode Memristor Bridge Synaptic Circuit with Memristor Emulators

    OpenAIRE

    Leon Chua; Maheshwar Pd. Sah; Hyongsuk Kim; Changju Yang

    2012-01-01

    A memristor bridge neural circuit which is able to perform signed synaptic weighting was proposed in our previous study, where the synaptic operation was verified via software simulation of the mathematical model of the HP memristor. This study is an extension of the previous work advancing toward the circuit implementation where the architecture of the memristor bridge synapse is built with memristor emulator circuits. In addition, a simple neural network which performs both synaptic weighti...

  11. Restoration of synaptic function in sight for degenerative retinal disease

    OpenAIRE

    Schubert, Timm; Wissinger, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic disorganization is a prominent feature of many neurological diseases of the CNS, including Parkinson’s disease, intellectual development disorders, and autism. Although synaptic plasticity is critical for learning and memory, it is unclear whether this innate property helps restore synaptic function in disease once the primary cause of disease is abrogated. An answer to this question may come from a recent investigation in X-linked retinoschisis, a currently untreatable retinopathy. ...

  12. Concurrent Imaging of Synaptic Vesicle Recycling and Calcium Dynamics

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Haiyan; Foss, Sarah M.; Dobryy, Yuriy L.; Park, C. Kevin; Hires, Samuel Andrew; Shaner, Nathan C.; Tsien, Roger Y.; Osborne, Leslie C.; Voglmaier, Susan M.

    2011-01-01

    Synaptic transmission involves the calcium dependent release of neurotransmitter from synaptic vesicles. Genetically encoded optical probes emitting different wavelengths of fluorescent light in response to neuronal activity offer a powerful approach to understand the spatial and temporal relationship of calcium dynamics to the release of neurotransmitter in defined neuronal populations. To simultaneously image synaptic vesicle recycling and changes in cytosolic calcium, we developed a red-sh...

  13. Concurrent imaging of synaptic vesicle recycling and calcium dynamics.

    OpenAIRE

    Haiyan eLi; Foss, Sarah M.; Yuriy eDobryy; C. Kevin ePark; Samuel Andrew Hires; Shaner, Nathan C.; Tsien, Roger Y.; Osborne, Leslie C.; Voglmaier, Susan M.

    2011-01-01

    Synaptic transmission involves the calcium-dependent release of neurotransmitter from synaptic vesicles. Genetically encoded optical probes emitting different wavelengths of fluorescent light in response to neuronal activity offer a powerful approach to understand the spatial and temporal relationship of calcium dynamics to the release of neurotransmitter in defined neuronal populations. To simultaneously image synaptic vesicle recycling and changes in cytosolic calcium, we developed a red-...

  14. Statistical mechanics of attractor neural network models with synaptic depression

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Synaptic depression is known to control gain for presynaptic inputs. Since cortical neurons receive thousands of presynaptic inputs, and their outputs are fed into thousands of other neurons, the synaptic depression should influence macroscopic properties of neural networks. We employ simple neural network models to explore the macroscopic effects of synaptic depression. Systems with the synaptic depression cannot be analyzed due to asymmetry of connections with the conventional equilibrium statistical-mechanical approach. Thus, we first propose a microscopic dynamical mean field theory. Next, we derive macroscopic steady state equations and discuss the stabilities of steady states for various types of neural network models.

  15. Experimental Implementation of a Biometric Laser Synaptic Sensor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander N. Pisarchik

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available We fabricate a biometric laser fiber synaptic sensor to transmit information from one neuron cell to the other by an optical way. The optical synapse is constructed on the base of an erbium-doped fiber laser, whose pumped diode current is driven by a pre-synaptic FitzHugh–Nagumo electronic neuron, and the laser output controls a post-synaptic FitzHugh–Nagumo electronic neuron. The implemented laser synapse displays very rich dynamics, including fixed points, periodic orbits with different frequency-locking ratios and chaos. These regimes can be beneficial for efficient biorobotics, where behavioral flexibility subserved by synaptic connectivity is a challenge.

  16. Multi-gate synergic modulation in laterally coupled synaptic transistors

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-10-01

    Laterally coupled oxide-based synaptic transistors with multiple gates are fabricated on phosphorosilicate glass electrolyte films. Electrical performance of the transistor can be evidently improved when the device is operated in a tri-gate synergic modulation mode. Excitatory post-synaptic current and paired pulse facilitation (PPF) behavior of biological synapses are mimicked, and PPF index can be effectively tuned by the voltage applied on the modulatory terminal. At last, superlinear to sublinear synaptic integration regulation is also mimicked by applying a modulatory pulse on the third modulatory terminal. The multi-gate oxide-based synaptic transistors may find potential applications in biochemical sensors and neuromorphic systems.

  17. [Peptidergic modulation of the hippocampus synaptic activity].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skrebitskiĭ, V G; Kondratenko, R V; Povarov, I S; Dereviagin, V I

    2011-11-01

    Effects of two newly synthesized nootropic and anxiolytic dipeptides: Noopept and Selank on inhibitory synaptic transmission in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells were investigated using patch-clamp technique in whole-cell configuration. Bath application of Noopept (1 microM) or Selank (2 microM) significantly increased the frequency of spike-dependent spontaneous m1PSCs, whereas spike-independent mlPSCs remained unchanged. It was suggested that both peptides mediated their effect sue to activation of inhibitory interneurons terminating on CA1 pyramidal cells. Results of current clamp recording of inhibitory interneurons residing in stratum radiatum confirmed this suggestion, at least for Noonent. PMID:22390072

  18. Fast micro-iontophoresis of glutamate and GABA: a useful tool to investigate synaptic integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Christina; Remy, Stefan

    2013-01-01

    One of the fundamental interests in neuroscience is to understand the integration of excitatory and inhibitory inputs along the very complex structure of the dendritic tree, which eventually leads to neuronal output of action potentials at the axon. The influence of diverse spatial and temporal parameters of specific synaptic input on neuronal output is currently under investigation, e.g. the distance-dependent attenuation of dendritic inputs, the location-dependent interaction of spatially segregated inputs, the influence of GABAergig inhibition on excitatory integration, linear and non-linear integration modes, and many more. With fast micro-iontophoresis of glutamate and GABA it is possible to precisely investigate the spatial and temporal integration of glutamatergic excitation and GABAergic inhibition. Critical technical requirements are either a triggered fluorescent lamp, light-emitting diode (LED), or a two-photon scanning microscope to visualize dendritic branches without introducing significant photo-damage of the tissue. Furthermore, it is very important to have a micro-iontophoresis amplifier that allows for fast capacitance compensation of high resistance pipettes. Another crucial point is that no transmitter is involuntarily released by the pipette during the experiment. Once established, this technique will give reliable and reproducible signals with a high neurotransmitter and location specificity. Compared to glutamate and GABA uncaging, fast iontophoresis allows using both transmitters at the same time but at very distant locations without limitation to the field of view. There are also advantages compared to focal electrical stimulation of axons: with micro-iontophoresis the location of the input site is definitely known and it is sure that only the neurotransmitter of interest is released. However it has to be considered that with micro-iontophoresis only the postsynapse is activated and presynaptic aspects of neurotransmitter release are not

  19. Phospholipase A2 activation enhances inhibitory synaptic transmission in rat substantia gelatinosa neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Tao; Fujita, Tsugumi; Nakatsuka, Terumasa; Kumamoto, Eiichi

    2008-03-01

    Phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)) activation enhances glutamatergic excitatory synaptic transmission in substantia gelatinosa (SG) neurons, which play a pivotal role in regulating nociceptive transmission in the spinal cord. By using melittin as a tool to activate PLA(2), we examined the effect of PLA(2) activation on spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSCs) recorded at 0 mV in SG neurons of adult rat spinal cord slices by use of the whole cell patch-clamp technique. Melittin enhanced the frequency and amplitude of GABAergic and glycinergic sIPSCs. The enhancement of GABAergic but not glycinergic transmission was largely depressed by Na(+) channel blocker tetrodotoxin or glutamate-receptor antagonists (6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione and/or dl-2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid) and also in a Ca(2+)-free Krebs solution. The effects of melittin on glycinergic sIPSC frequency and amplitude were dose-dependent with an effective concentration of approximately 0.7 microM for half-maximal effect and were depressed by PLA(2) inhibitor 4-bromophenacyl bromide or aristolochic acid. The melittin-induced enhancement of glycinergic transmission was depressed by lipoxygenase inhibitor nordihydroguaiaretic acid but not cyclooxygenase inhibitor indomethacin. These results indicate that the activation of PLA(2) in the SG enhances GABAergic and glycinergic inhibitory transmission in SG neurons. The former action is mediated by glutamate-receptor activation and neuronal activity increase, possibly the facilitatory effect of PLA(2) activation on excitatory transmission, whereas the latter action is due to PLA(2) and subsequent lipoxygenase activation and is independent of extracellular Ca(2+). It is suggested that PLA(2) activation in the SG could enhance not only excitatory but also inhibitory transmission, resulting in the modulation of nociception. PMID:18216222

  20. Boosting of synaptic potentials and spine Ca transients by the peptide toxin SNX-482 requires alpha-1E-encoded voltage-gated Ca channels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew J Giessel

    Full Text Available The majority of glutamatergic synapses formed onto principal neurons of the mammalian central nervous system are associated with dendritic spines. Spines are tiny protuberances that house the proteins that mediate the response of the postsynaptic cell to the presynaptic release of glutamate. Postsynaptic signals are regulated by an ion channel signaling cascade that is active in individual dendritic spines and involves voltage-gated calcium (Ca channels, small conductance (SK-type Ca-activated potassium channels, and NMDA-type glutamate receptors. Pharmacological studies using the toxin SNX-482 indicated that the voltage-gated Ca channels that signal within spines to open SK channels belong to the class Ca(V2.3, which is encoded by the Alpha-1E pore-forming subunit. In order to specifically test this conclusion, we examined the effects of SNX-482 on synaptic signals in acute hippocampal slices from knock-out mice lacking the Alpha-1E gene. We find that in these mice, application of SNX-482 has no effect on glutamate-uncaging evoked synaptic potentials and Ca influx, indicating that that SNX-482 indeed acts via the Alpha-1E-encoded Ca(V2.3 channel.

  1. Ménage à trois: the role of neurotransmitters in the energy metabolism of astrocytes, glutamatergic, and GABAergic neurons

    OpenAIRE

    CALVETTI, DANIELA; Somersalo, Erkki

    2012-01-01

    This work is a computational study based on a new detailed metabolic network model comprising well-mixed compartments representing separate cytosol and mitochondria of astrocytes, glutamatergic and gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic neurons, communicating through an extracellular space compartment and fed by arterial blood flow. Our steady-state analysis assumes statistical mass balance of both carbons and amino groups. The study is based on Bayesian flux balance analysis, which uses Markov ...

  2. Prolonged Exposure to NMDAR Antagonist Induces Cell-type Specific Changes of Glutamatergic Receptors in Rat Prefrontal Cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Huai-Xing; Gao, Wen-Jun

    2011-01-01

    N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) receptors are critical for both normal brain functions and the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. We investigated the functional changes of glutamatergic receptors in the pyramidal cells and fast-spiking (FS) interneurons in the adolescent rat prefrontal cortex in MK-801 model of schizophrenia. We found that although both pyramidal cells and FS interneurons were affected by in vivo subchronic blockade of NMDA receptors, MK-801 induced distinct changes in αamino-3-h...

  3. Prenatal Nicotine Exposure Impairs the Proliferation of Neuronal Progenitors, Leading to Fewer Glutamatergic Neurons in the Medial Prefrontal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aoyama, Yuki; Toriumi, Kazuya; Mouri, Akihiro; Hattori, Tomoya; Ueda, Eriko; Shimato, Akane; Sakakibara, Nami; Soh, Yuka; Mamiya, Takayoshi; Nagai, Taku; Kim, Hyoung-Chun; Hiramatsu, Masayuki; Nabeshima, Toshitaka; Yamada, Kiyofumi

    2016-01-01

    Cigarette smoking during pregnancy is associated with various disabilities in the offspring such as attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, learning disabilities, and persistent anxiety. We have reported that nicotine exposure in female mice during pregnancy, in particular from embryonic day 14 (E14) to postnatal day 0 (P0), induces long-lasting behavioral deficits in offspring. However, the mechanism by which prenatal nicotine exposure (PNE) affects neurodevelopment, resulting in behavioral deficits, has remained unclear. Here, we report that PNE disrupted the proliferation of neuronal progenitors, leading to a decrease in the progenitor pool in the ventricular and subventricular zones. In addition, using a cumulative 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine labeling assay, we evaluated the rate of cell cycle progression causing the impairment of neuronal progenitor proliferation, and uncovered anomalous cell cycle kinetics in mice with PNE. Accordingly, the density of glutamatergic neurons in the medial prefrontal cortex (medial PFC) was reduced, implying glutamatergic dysregulation. Mice with PNE exhibited behavioral impairments in attentional function and behavioral flexibility in adulthood, and the deficits were ameliorated by microinjection of D-cycloserine into the PFC. Collectively, our findings suggest that PNE affects the proliferation and maturation of progenitor cells to glutamatergic neuron during neurodevelopment in the medial PFC, which may be associated with cognitive deficits in the offspring. PMID:26105135

  4. Impairment of synaptic development in the hippocampus of diabetic Goto-Kakizaki rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsunaga, Yuki; Negishi, Takayuki; Hatakeyama, Akinori; Kawagoe, Yuta; Sawano, Erika; Tashiro, Tomoko

    2016-10-01

    Insulin receptor signaling has been shown to regulate essential aspects of CNS function such as synaptic plasticity and neuronal survival. To elucidate its roles during CNS development in vivo, we examined the synaptic and cognitive development of the spontaneously diabetic Goto-Kakizaki (GK) rats in the present study. GK rats are non-obese models of type 2 diabetes established by selective inbreeding of Wistar rats based on impaired glucose tolerance. Though they start exhibiting only moderate hyperglycemia without changes in plasma insulin levels from 3 weeks postnatally, behavioral alterations in the open-field as well as significant impairments in memory retention compared with Wistar rats were observed at 10 weeks and were worsened at 20 weeks. Alterations in insulin receptor signaling and signs of insulin resistance were detected in the GK rat hippocampus at 3 weeks, as early as in other insulin-responsive peripheral tissues. Significant reduction of an excitatory postsynaptic scaffold protein, PSD95, was found at 5w and later in the hippocampus of GK rats due to the absence of a two-fold developmental increase of this protein observed in Wistar control rats between 3 and 20w. In the GK rat hippocampus, NR2A which is a NMDA receptor subunit selectively anchored to PSD95 was also reduced. In contrast, both NR2B and its anchoring protein, SAP102, showed similar developmental profiles in Wistar and GK rats with expression peaks at 2 and 3w. The results suggest that early alterations in insulin receptor signaling in the GK rat hippocampus may affect cognitive performance by suppressing synaptic maturation. PMID:27444810

  5. Abundance of gap junctions at glutamatergic mixed synapses in adult Mosquitofish spinal cord neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott E Fraser

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available “Dye-coupling”, whole-mount immunohistochemistry for gap junction channel protein connexin 35 (Cx35, and freeze-fracture replica immunogold labeling (FRIL reveal an abundance of electrical synapses/gap junctions at glutamatergic mixed synapses in the 14th spinal segment that innervates the adult male gonopodium of Western Mosquitofish, Gambusia affinis (Mosquitofish. To study gap junctions’ role in fast motor behavior, we used a minimally-invasive neural-tract-tracing technique to introduce gap junction-permeant or -impermeant dyes into deep muscles controlling the gonopodium of the adult male Mosquitofish, a teleost fish that rapidly transfers (complete in 50 of the 62 gap junctions at mixed synapses are in the 14th spinal segment. Our results support and extend studies showing gap junctions at mixed synapses in spinal cord segments involved in control of genital reflexes in rodents, and they suggest a link between mixed synapses and fast motor behavior. The findings provide a basis for studies of specific roles of spinal neurons in the generation/regulation of sex-specific behavior and for studies of gap junctions’ role in regulating fast motor behavior. Finally, the CoPA IN provides a novel candidate neuron for future studies of gap junctions and neural control of fast motor behaviors.

  6. ENT1 inhibition attenuates epileptic seizure severity via regulation of glutamatergic neurotransmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Zucai; Xu, Ping; Chen, Yalan; Liu, Jing; Zhang, Yanke; Lv, Yaodong; Luo, Jing; Fang, Min; Zhang, Jun; Wang, Jing; Wang, Kewei; Wang, Xuefeng; Chen, Guojun

    2015-03-01

    Type 1 equilibrative nucleoside transporter (ENT1) promotes glutamate release by inhibition of adenosine signaling. However, whether ENT1 plays a role in epileptic seizure that involves elevated glutamatergic neurotransmission is unknown. Here, we report that both seizure rats and patients show increased expression of ENT1. Intrahippocampal injection of a specific inhibitor of ENT1, nitrobenzylthioinosine (NBTI), attenuates seizure severity and prolongs onset latency. In order to examine whether NBTI would be effective as antiepileptic after peripheral application, we injected NBTI intraperitoneally, and the results were similar to those obtained after intrahippocampal injection. NBTI administration leads to suppressed neuronal firing in seizure rats. In addition, increased mEPSC in seizure are inhibited by NBTI. Finally, NBTI results in deactivation of phosphorylated cAMP-response element-binding protein in the seizure rats. These results indicate that ENT1 plays an important role in the development of seizure. Inhibition of ENT1 might provide a novel therapeutic approach toward the control of epileptic seizure. PMID:25490964

  7. Tangential migration of glutamatergic neurons and cortical patterning during development: Lessons from Cajal-Retzius cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barber, Melissa; Pierani, Alessandra

    2016-08-01

    Tangential migration is a mode of cell movement, which in the developing cerebral cortex, is defined by displacement parallel to the ventricular surface and orthogonal to the radial glial fibers. This mode of long-range migration is a strategy by which distinct neuronal classes generated from spatially and molecularly distinct origins can integrate to form appropriate neural circuits within the cortical plate. While it was previously believed that only GABAergic cortical interneurons migrate tangentially from their origins in the subpallial ganglionic eminences to integrate in the cortical plate, it is now known that transient populations of glutamatergic neurons also adopt this mode of migration. These include Cajal-Retzius cells (CRs), subplate neurons (SPs), and cortical plate transient neurons (CPTs), which have crucial roles in orchestrating the radial and tangential development of the embryonic cerebral cortex in a noncell-autonomous manner. While CRs have been extensively studied, it is only in the last decade that the molecular mechanisms governing their tangential migration have begun to be elucidated. To date, the mechanisms of SPs and CPTs tangential migration remain unknown. We therefore review the known signaling pathways, which regulate parameters of CRs migration including their motility, contact-redistribution and adhesion to the pial surface, and discuss this in the context of how CR migration may regulate their signaling activity in a spatial and temporal manner. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 76: 847-881, 2016. PMID:26581033

  8. Synaptic Democracy and Vesicular Transport in Axons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bressloff, Paul C.; Levien, Ethan

    2015-04-01

    Synaptic democracy concerns the general problem of how regions of an axon or dendrite far from the cell body (soma) of a neuron can play an effective role in neuronal function. For example, stimulated synapses far from the soma are unlikely to influence the firing of a neuron unless some sort of active dendritic processing occurs. Analogously, the motor-driven transport of newly synthesized proteins from the soma to presynaptic targets along the axon tends to favor the delivery of resources to proximal synapses. Both of these phenomena reflect fundamental limitations of transport processes based on a localized source. In this Letter, we show that a more democratic distribution of proteins along an axon can be achieved by making the transport process less efficient. This involves two components: bidirectional or "stop-and-go" motor transport (which can be modeled in terms of advection-diffusion), and reversible interactions between motor-cargo complexes and synaptic targets. Both of these features have recently been observed experimentally. Our model suggests that, just as in human societies, there needs to be a balance between "efficiency" and "equality".

  9. Spike-timing-dependent BDNF secretion and synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Hui; Park, Hyungju; Poo, Mu-Ming

    2014-01-01

    In acute hippocampal slices, we found that the presence of extracellular brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is essential for the induction of spike-timing-dependent long-term potentiation (tLTP). To determine whether BDNF could be secreted from postsynaptic dendrites in a spike-timing-dependent manner, we used a reduced system of dissociated hippocampal neurons in culture. Repetitive pairing of iontophoretically applied glutamate pulses at the dendrite with neuronal spikes could induce persistent alterations of glutamate-induced responses at the same dendritic site in a manner that mimics spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP)-the glutamate-induced responses were potentiated and depressed when the glutamate pulses were applied 20 ms before and after neuronal spiking, respectively. By monitoring changes in the green fluorescent protein (GFP) fluorescence at the dendrite of hippocampal neurons expressing GFP-tagged BDNF, we found that pairing of iontophoretic glutamate pulses with neuronal spiking resulted in BDNF secretion from the dendrite at the iontophoretic site only when the glutamate pulses were applied within a time window of approximately 40 ms prior to neuronal spiking, consistent with the timing requirement of synaptic potentiation via STDP. Thus, BDNF is required for tLTP and BDNF secretion could be triggered in a spike-timing-dependent manner from the postsynaptic dendrite. PMID:24298135

  10. α-synuclein and synapsin III cooperatively regulate synaptic function in dopamine neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaltieri, Michela; Grigoletto, Jessica; Longhena, Francesca; Navarria, Laura; Favero, Gaia; Castrezzati, Stefania; Colivicchi, Maria Alessandra; Della Corte, Laura; Rezzani, Rita; Pizzi, Marina; Benfenati, Fabio; Spillantini, Maria Grazia; Missale, Cristina; Spano, PierFranco; Bellucci, Arianna

    2015-07-01

    The main neuropathological features of Parkinson's disease are dopaminergic nigrostriatal neuron degeneration, and intraneuronal and intraneuritic proteinaceous inclusions named Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites, respectively, which mainly contain α-synuclein (α-syn, also known as SNCA). The neuronal phosphoprotein synapsin III (also known as SYN3), is a pivotal regulator of dopamine neuron synaptic function. Here, we show that α-syn interacts with and modulates synapsin III. The absence of α-syn causes a selective increase and redistribution of synapsin III, and changes the organization of synaptic vesicle pools in dopamine neurons. In α-syn-null mice, the alterations of synapsin III induce an increased locomotor response to the stimulation of synapsin-dependent dopamine overflow, despite this, these mice show decreased basal and depolarization-dependent striatal dopamine release. Of note, synapsin III seems to be involved in α-syn aggregation, which also coaxes its increase and redistribution. Furthermore, synapsin III accumulates in the caudate and putamen of individuals with Parkinson's disease. These findings support a reciprocal modulatory interaction of α-syn and synapsin III in the regulation of dopamine neuron synaptic function. PMID:25967550

  11. Identification of a human synaptotagmin-1 mutation that perturbs synaptic vesicle cycling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Kate; Gordon, Sarah L; Grozeva, Detelina; van Kogelenberg, Margriet; Roberts, Nicola Y; Pike, Michael; Blair, Edward; Hurles, Matthew E; Chong, W Kling; Baldeweg, Torsten; Kurian, Manju A; Boyd, Stewart G; Cousin, Michael A; Raymond, F Lucy

    2015-04-01

    Synaptotagmin-1 (SYT1) is a calcium-binding synaptic vesicle protein that is required for both exocytosis and endocytosis. Here, we describe a human condition associated with a rare variant in SYT1. The individual harboring this variant presented with an early onset dyskinetic movement disorder, severe motor delay, and profound cognitive impairment. Structural MRI was normal, but EEG showed extensive neurophysiological disturbances that included the unusual features of low-frequency oscillatory bursts and enhanced paired-pulse depression of visual evoked potentials. Trio analysis of whole-exome sequence identified a de novo SYT1 missense variant (I368T). Expression of rat SYT1 containing the equivalent human variant in WT mouse primary hippocampal cultures revealed that the mutant form of SYT1 correctly localizes to nerve terminals and is expressed at levels that are approximately equal to levels of endogenous WT protein. The presence of the mutant SYT1 slowed synaptic vesicle fusion kinetics, a finding that agrees with the previously demonstrated role for I368 in calcium-dependent membrane penetration. Expression of the I368T variant also altered the kinetics of synaptic vesicle endocytosis. Together, the clinical features, electrophysiological phenotype, and in vitro neuronal phenotype associated with this dominant negative SYT1 mutation highlight presynaptic mechanisms that mediate human motor control and cognitive development. PMID:25705886

  12. Stable Learning of Functional Maps in Self-Organizing Spiking Neural Networks with Continuous Synaptic Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Narayan eSrinivasa

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available This study describes a spiking model that self-organizes for stable formation and maintenance of orientation and ocular dominance maps in the visual cortex (V1. This self-organization process simulates three development phases: an early experience-independent phase, a late experience-independent phase and a subsequent refinement phase during which experience acts to shape the map properties. The ocular dominance maps that emerge accommodate the two sets of monocular inputs that arise from the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN to layer 4 of V1. The orientation selectivity maps that emerge feature well-developed iso-orientation domains and fractures. During the last two phases of development the orientation preferences at some locations appear to rotate continuously through +/- 180 along circular paths and referred to as pinwheel-like patterns but without any corresponding point discontinuities in the orientation gradient maps. The formation of these functional maps is driven by balanced excitatory and inhibitory currents that are established via synaptic plasticity based on spike timing for both excitatory and inhibitory synapses. The stability and maintenance of the formed maps with continuous synaptic plasticity is enabled by homeostasis caused by inhibitory plasticity. However, a prolonged exposure to repeated stimuli does alter the formed maps over time due to plasticity. The results from this study suggest that continuous synaptic plasticity in both excitatory neurons and interneurons could play a critical role in the formation, stability, and maintenance of functional maps in the cortex.

  13. Synaptic abnormalities in a Drosophila model of Alzheimer’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siddhita D. Mhatre

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer’s disease (AD is an age-related neurodegenerative disease characterized by memory loss and decreased synaptic function. Advances in transgenic animal models of AD have facilitated our understanding of this disorder, and have aided in the development, speed and efficiency of testing potential therapeutics. Recently, we have described the characterization of a novel model of AD in the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, where we expressed the human AD-associated proteins APP and BACE in the central nervous system of the fly. Here we describe synaptic defects in the larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ in this model. Our results indicate that expression of human APP and BACE at the larval NMJ leads to defective larval locomotion behavior, decreased presynaptic connections, altered mitochondrial localization in presynaptic motor neurons and decreased postsynaptic protein levels. Treating larvae expressing APP and BACE with the γ-secretase inhibitor L-685,458 suppresses the behavioral defects as well as the pre- and postsynaptic defects. We suggest that this model will be useful to assess and model the synaptic dysfunction normally associated with AD, and will also serve as a powerful in vivo tool for rapid testing of potential therapeutics for AD.

  14. Brief environmental enrichment elicits metaplasticity of hippocampal synaptic potentiation in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denise Manahan-Vaughan

    2012-12-01

    We assessed whether short-term EE elicits alterations in hippocampal synaptic plasticity and if social context may play a role. Adult mice were exposed to EE for 14 consecutive days. We found that robust late-LTP (>24h and short-term depression (<2h at Schaffer-collateral-CA1 synapses in freely behaving mice were unaltered, whereas early-LTP (E-LTP, <2h was significantly enhanced by EE. Effects were transient: E-LTP returned to control levels 1 week after cessation of EE. Six weeks later animals were re-exposed to EE for 14d. Under these conditions, E-LTP was facilitated into L-LTP (>24h, suggesting that metaplasticity was induced during the first EE experience and that EE-mediated modifications are cumulative. Effects were absent in mice that underwent solitary enrichment or were group-housed without EE. These data suggest that EE in naïve animals strengthens E-LTP, and also promotes L-LTP in animals that underwent EE in the past. This indicates that brief exposure to EE, particularly under social conditions can elicit lasting positive effects on synaptic strength that may have beneficial consequences for cognition that depends on synaptic plasticity.

  15. Kalirin-7 is necessary for normal NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lemtiri-Chlieh Fouad

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dendritic spines represent the postsynaptic component of the vast majority of excitatory synapses present in the mammalian forebrain. The ability of spines to rapidly alter their shape, size, number and receptor content in response to stimulation is considered to be of paramount importance during the development of synaptic plasticity. Indeed, long-term potentiation (LTP, widely believed to be a cellular correlate of learning and memory, has been repeatedly shown to induce both spine enlargement and the formation of new dendritic spines. In our studies, we focus on Kalirin-7 (Kal7, a Rho GDP/GTP exchange factor (Rho-GEF localized to the postsynaptic density that plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of dendritic spines both in vitro and in vivo. Previous studies have shown that mice lacking Kal7 (Kal7KO have decreased dendritic spine density in the hippocampus as well as focal hippocampal-dependent learning impairments. Results We have performed a detailed electrophysiological characterization of the role of Kal7 in hippocampal synaptic plasticity. We show that loss of Kal7 results in impaired NMDA receptor-dependent LTP and long-term depression, whereas a NMDA receptor-independent form of LTP is shown to be normal in the absence of Kal7. Conclusions These results indicate that Kal7 is an essential and selective modulator of NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus.

  16. Kalirin-7 is necessary for normal NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity

    KAUST Repository

    Lemtiri-Chlieh, Fouad

    2011-12-19

    Background: Dendritic spines represent the postsynaptic component of the vast majority of excitatory synapses present in the mammalian forebrain. The ability of spines to rapidly alter their shape, size, number and receptor content in response to stimulation is considered to be of paramount importance during the development of synaptic plasticity. Indeed, long-term potentiation (LTP), widely believed to be a cellular correlate of learning and memory, has been repeatedly shown to induce both spine enlargement and the formation of new dendritic spines. In our studies, we focus on Kalirin-7 (Kal7), a Rho GDP/GTP exchange factor (Rho-GEF) localized to the postsynaptic density that plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of dendritic spines both in vitro and in vivo. Previous studies have shown that mice lacking Kal7 (Kal7 KO) have decreased dendritic spine density in the hippocampus as well as focal hippocampal-dependent learning impairments.Results: We have performed a detailed electrophysiological characterization of the role of Kal7 in hippocampal synaptic plasticity. We show that loss of Kal7 results in impaired NMDA receptor-dependent LTP and long-term depression, whereas a NMDA receptor-independent form of LTP is shown to be normal in the absence of Kal7.Conclusions: These results indicate that Kal7 is an essential and selective modulator of NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. 2011 Lemtiri-Chlieh et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

  17. Long-lasting hippocampal synaptic protein loss in a mouse model of posttraumatic stress disorder.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonie Herrmann

    Full Text Available Despite intensive research efforts, the molecular pathogenesis of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD and especially of the hippocampal volume loss found in the majority of patients suffering from this anxiety disease still remains elusive. We demonstrated before that trauma-induced hippocampal shrinkage can also be observed in mice exhibiting a PTSD-like syndrome. Aiming to decipher the molecular correlates of these trans-species posttraumatic hippocampal alterations, we compared the expression levels of a set of neurostructural marker proteins between traumatized and control mice at different time points after their subjection to either an electric footshock or mock treatment which was followed by stressful re-exposure in several experimental groups. To our knowledge, this is the first systematic in vivo study analyzing the long-term neuromolecular sequelae of acute traumatic stress combined with re-exposure. We show here that a PTSD-like syndrome in mice is accompanied by a long-lasting reduction of hippocampal synaptic proteins which interestingly correlates with the strength of the generalized and conditioned fear response but not with the intensity of hyperarousal symptoms. Furthermore, we demonstrate that treatment with the serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI fluoxetine is able to counteract both the PTSD-like syndrome and the posttraumatic synaptic protein loss. Taken together, this study demonstrates for the first time that a loss of hippocampal synaptic proteins is associated with a PTSD-like syndrome in mice. Further studies will have to reveal whether these findings are transferable to PTSD patients.

  18. Presynaptic and postsynaptic actions of halothane at glutamatergic synapses in the mouse hippocampus

    OpenAIRE

    Kirson, Eilon D; Yaari, Yoel; Perouansky, Misha

    1998-01-01

    Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in adult mouse hippocampal slices were used to test the mechanism by which the volatile anesthetic halothane inhibits glutamate receptor-mediated synaptic transmission. Non-N-methyl-D-aspartate (nonNMDA) and NMDA receptor-mediated currents in CA1 pyramidal cells were pharmacologically isolated by bath application of D,L-2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid (APV; 100 μM) or 6-cyano-7-nitro-quinoxaline-2,3-dione (CNQX; 5 μM), respectively.Halothane blocked both nonN...

  19. Synaptic depression and short-term habituation are located in the sensory part of the mammalian startle pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pilz Peter KD

    2006-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Short-term habituation of the startle response represents an elementary form of learning in mammals. The underlying mechanism is located within the primary startle pathway, presumably at sensory synapses on giant neurons in the caudal pontine reticular nucleus (PnC. Short trains of action potentials in sensory afferent fibers induce depression of synaptic responses in PnC giant neurons, a phenomenon that has been proposed to be the cellular correlate for short-term habituation. We address here the question whether both this synaptic depression and the short-term habituation of the startle response are localized at the presynaptic terminals of sensory afferents. If this is confirmed, it would imply that these processes take place prior to multimodal signal integration, rather than occurring at postsynaptic sites on PnC giant neurons that directly drive motor neurons. Results Patch-clamp recordings in vitro were combined with behavioral experiments; synaptic depression was specific for the input pathway stimulated and did not affect signals elicited by other sensory afferents. Concordant with this, short-term habituation of the acoustic startle response in behavioral experiments did not influence tactile startle response amplitudes and vice versa. Further electrophysiological analysis showed that the passive properties of the postsynaptic neuron were unchanged but revealed some alterations in short-term plasticity during depression. Moreover, depression was induced only by trains of presynaptic action potentials and not by single pulses. There was no evidence for transmitter receptor desensitization. In summary, the data indicates that the synaptic depression mechanism is located presynaptically. Conclusion Our electrophysiological and behavioral data strongly indicate that synaptic depression in the PnC as well as short-term habituation are located in the sensory part of the startle pathway, namely at the axon terminals of

  20. Role of mast cell- and non-mast cell-derived inflammatory mediators in immunologic induction of synaptic plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Albuquerque A.A.C.

    1997-01-01

    Full Text Available We have previously discovered a long-lasting enhancement of synaptic transmission in mammal autonomic ganglia caused by immunological activation of ganglionic mast cells. Subsequent to mast cell activation, lipid and peptide mediators are released which may modulate synaptic function. In this study we determined whether some mast cell-derived mediators, prostaglandin D2 (PGD2; 1.0 µM, platelet aggregating factor (PAF; 0.3 µM and U44619 (a thromboxane analogue; 1.0 µM, and also endothelin-1 (ET-1; 0.5 µM induce synaptic potentiation in the guinea pig superior cervical ganglion (SCG, and compared their effects on synaptic transmission with those induced by a sensitizing antigen, ovalbumin (OVA; 10 µg/ml. The experiments were carried out on SCGs isolated from adult male guinea pigs (200-250 g actively sensitized to OVA, maintained in oxygenated Locke solution at 37oC. Synaptic potentiation was measured through alterations of the integral of the post-ganglionic compound action potential (CAP. All agents tested caused long-term (LTP; duration ³30 min or short-term (STP; <30 min potentiation of synaptic efficacy, as measured by the increase in the integral of the post-ganglionic CAP. The magnitude of mediator-induced potentiation was never the same as the antigen-induced long-term potentiation (A-LTP. The agent that best mimicked the antigen was PGD2, which induced a 75% increase in CAP integral for LTP (antigen: 94% and a 34% increase for STP (antigen: 91%. PAF-, U44619-, and ET-1-induced increases in CAP integral ranged for LTP from 34 to 47%, and for STP from 0 to 26%. These results suggest that the agents investigated may participate in the induction of A-LTP

  1. Upregulation of calpain activity precedes tau phosphorylation and loss of synaptic proteins in Alzheimer’s disease brain

    OpenAIRE

    Kurbatskaya, Ksenia; Phillips, Emma Claire; Croft, Cara Louise; Dentoni, Giacomo; Hughes, Martina; Wade, Matthew Austen James; Al-Sarraj, Safa; Troakes, Claire; O'Neill, Michael; Gomez Perez-Nievas, Beatriz; Hanger, Diane Pamela; Noble, Wendy Jane

    2016-01-01

    Alterations in calcium homeostasis are widely reported to contribute to synaptic degeneration and neuronal loss in Alzheimer’s disease. Elevated cytosolic calcium concentrations lead to activation of the calcium-sensitive cysteine protease, calpain, which has a number of substrates known to be abnormally regulated in disease. Analysis of human brain has shown that calpain activity is elevated in AD compared to controls, and that calpain-mediated proteolysis regulates the activity of important...

  2. SYNGAP1 Links the Maturation Rate of Excitatory Synapses to the Duration of Critical-Period Synaptic Plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Clement, James P.; Ozkan, Emin D.; Aceti, Massimiliano; Miller, Courtney A.; Rumbaugh, Gavin

    2013-01-01

    Critical periods of developmental plasticity contribute to the refinement of neural connections that broadly shape brain development. These windows of plasticity are thought to be important for the maturation of perception, language, and cognition. Synaptic properties in cortical regions that underlie critical periods influence the onset and duration of windows, although it remains unclear how mechanisms that shape synapse development alter critical-period properties. In this study, we demons...

  3. First effects of rising amyloid-β in transgenic mouse brain: synaptic transmission and gene expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cummings, Damian M; Liu, Wenfei; Portelius, Erik; Bayram, Sevinç; Yasvoina, Marina; Ho, Sui-Hin; Smits, Hélène; Ali, Shabinah S; Steinberg, Rivka; Pegasiou, Chrysia-Maria; James, Owain T; Matarin, Mar; Richardson, Jill C; Zetterberg, Henrik; Blennow, Kaj; Hardy, John A; Salih, Dervis A; Edwards, Frances A

    2015-07-01

    affected but often showing significant changes only by 4 months. We thus demonstrate that, in a mouse model of rising amyloid-β, the initial deposition of plaques does not occur until several months after the first amyloid-β becomes detectable but coincides with a rapid acceleration in the rise of amyloid-β levels and the amyloid-β42:amyloid-β40 ratio. Prior to acceleration, however, there is already a pronounced synaptic dysfunction, reflected as changes in synaptic transmission and altered gene expression, indicating that restoring synaptic function early in the disease progression may represent the earliest possible target for intervention in the onset of Alzheimer's disease. PMID:25981962

  4. Synaptic signaling and aberrant RNA splicing in autism spectrum disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Ryan M Smith; Wolfgang eSadee

    2011-01-01

    Interactions between presynaptic and postsynaptic cellular adhesion molecules drive synapse maturation during development. These trans-synaptic interactions are regulated by alternative splicing of cellular adhesion molecule RNAs, which ultimately determines neurotransmitter phenotype. The diverse assortment of RNAs produced by alternative splicing generates countless protein isoforms necessary for guiding specialized cell-to-cell connectivity. Failure to generate the appropriate synaptic ...

  5. Synaptic Tagging, Evaluation of Memories, and the Distal Reward Problem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papper, Marc; Kempter, Richard; Leibold, Christian

    2011-01-01

    Long-term synaptic plasticity exhibits distinct phases. The synaptic tagging hypothesis suggests an early phase in which synapses are prepared, or "tagged," for protein capture, and a late phase in which those proteins are integrated into the synapses to achieve memory consolidation. The synapse specificity of the tags is consistent with…

  6. Synaptic Signaling and Aberrant RNA Splicing in Autism Spectrum Disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Smith, Ryan M; Sadee, Wolfgang

    2011-01-01

    Interactions between presynaptic and postsynaptic cellular adhesion molecules (CAMs) drive synapse maturation during development. These trans-synaptic interactions are regulated by alternative splicing of CAM RNAs, which ultimately determines neurotransmitter phenotype. The diverse assortment of RNAs produced by alternative splicing generates countless protein isoforms necessary for guiding specialized cell-to-cell connectivity. Failure to generate the appropriate synaptic adhesion proteins i...

  7. The Ubiquitin-Proteasome Pathway and Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hegde, Ashok N.

    2010-01-01

    Proteolysis by the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway (UPP) has emerged as a new molecular mechanism that controls wide-ranging functions in the nervous system, including fine-tuning of synaptic connections during development and synaptic plasticity in the adult organism. In the UPP, attachment of a small protein, ubiquitin, tags the substrates for…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

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

  9. Nicotinic mechanisms influencing synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Andon Nicholas PLACZEK; Tao A ZHANG; John Anthony DANI

    2009-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are expressed throughout the hippocampus, and nicotinic signaling plays an important role in neuronal function. In the context of learning and memory related behaviors associated with hippocampal function, a potentially significant feature of nAChR activity is the impact it has on synaptic plasticity. Synaptic plasticity in hippocampal neurons has long been considered a contributing cellular mechanism of learning and memory. These same kinds of cellular mechanisms are a factor in the development of nicotine addiction. Nicotinic signaling has been demonstrated by in vitro studies to affect synaptic plasticity in hippocampal neurons via multiple steps, and the signaling has also been shown to evoke synaptic plasticity in vivo. This review focuses on the nAChRs subtypes that contribute to hippocampal synaptic plasticity at the cellular and circuit level. It also considers nicotinic influences over long-term changes in the hippocampus that may contribute to addiction.

  10. The cannabinoid receptor 1 associates with NMDA receptors to produce glutamatergic hypofunction: implications in psychosis and schizophrenia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pilar eSánchez-Blázquez

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The endocannabinoid system is widespread throughout the central nervous system and its type 1 receptor (CB1 plays a crucial role in preventing the neurotoxicity caused by activation of glutamate N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs. Indeed, it is the activity of NMDARs themselves that provides the demands on the endogenous cannabinoids in order to control their calcium currents. Therefore, a physiological role of this system is to maintain NMDAR activity within safe limits, thereby protecting neural cells from excitotoxicity. Thus, cannabinoids may be able to control NMDAR overactivation-related neural dysfunctions; however the major obstacles to the therapeutic utilization of these compounds are their psychotropic effects and negative influence on cognitive performance. Studies in humans have indicated that abuse of smoked cannabis can promote psychosis and even circumstantially precipitate symptoms of schizophrenia, although the latter appears to require a prior vulnerability in the individual. It is possible that cannabinoids provoke psychosis/schizophrenia reflecting a mechanism common to neuroprotection the reduction of NMDAR activity. Cannabinoids are proposed to produce such effect by reducing the pre-synaptic release of glutamate or interfering with postsynaptic NMDAR-regulated signaling pathways. The efficacy of such control requires the endocannabinoid system to apply its negative influence in a manner that is proportional to the strength of NMDAR signaling. Thus, cannabinoids acting at the wrong time or exerting an inappropriate influence on their receptors may cause NMDAR hypofunction. The purpose of the present review is to draw the attention of the reader to the newly described functional and physical CB1-NMDAR association, which may elucidate the scenario required for the rapid and efficacious control of NMDAR activity. Whether alterations in these mechanisms may increase NMDAR hypofunction leading to vulnerability to

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Chenchen; Rainnie, Donald G

    2014-10-01

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

  12. Overexpression of synapsin Ia in the rat calyx of Held accelerates short-term plasticity and decreases synaptic vesicle volume and active zone area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariya Vasileva

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Synapsins are synaptic vesicle (SV proteins organizing a component of the reserve pool of vesicles at most central nervous system synapses. Alternative splicing of the three mammalian genes results in multiple isoforms that may differentially contribute to the organization and maintenance of the synaptic vesicle-pools. To address this, we first characterized the expression pattern of synapsin isoforms in the rat calyx of Held. At postnatal day 16, synapsins Ia, Ib, IIb and IIIa were present, while IIa – known to sustain repetitive transmission in glutamatergic terminals – was not detectable. To test if the synapsin I isoforms could mediate IIa-like effect, and if this depends on the presence of the E-domain, we overexpressed either synapsin Ia or synapsin Ib in the rat calyx of Held via recombinant adeno-associated virus-mediated gene transfer. Although the size and overall structure of the perturbed calyces remained unchanged, short-term depression and recovery from depression were accelerated upon overexpression of synapsin I isoforms. Thus, at the calyx of Held, synapsin Ia may not substitute for the synapsin IIa-function reported for hippocampal synapses. Using electron microscopic three-dimensional reconstructions we found a redistribution of SV clusters proximal to the active zones (AZ alongside with a decrease of both AZ area and SV volume. The number of SVs at individual AZs was strongly reduced. Hence, our data indicate that the amount of synapsin Ia expressed in the calyx regulates the rate and extent of short-term synaptic plasticity by affecting vesicle recruitment to the AZ. Finally, our study reveals a novel contribution of synapsin Ia to define the surface area of AZs.

  13. Synaptic Homeostasis and Restructuring across the Sleep-Wake Cycle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilfredo Blanco

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Sleep is critical for hippocampus-dependent memory consolidation. However, the underlying mechanisms of synaptic plasticity are poorly understood. The central controversy is on whether long-term potentiation (LTP takes a role during sleep and which would be its specific effect on memory. To address this question, we used immunohistochemistry to measure phosphorylation of Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (pCaMKIIα in the rat hippocampus immediately after specific sleep-wake states were interrupted. Control animals not exposed to novel objects during waking (WK showed stable pCaMKIIα levels across the sleep-wake cycle, but animals exposed to novel objects showed a decrease during subsequent slow-wave sleep (SWS followed by a rebound during rapid-eye-movement sleep (REM. The levels of pCaMKIIα during REM were proportional to cortical spindles near SWS/REM transitions. Based on these results, we modeled sleep-dependent LTP on a network of fully connected excitatory neurons fed with spikes recorded from the rat hippocampus across WK, SWS and REM. Sleep without LTP orderly rescaled synaptic weights to a narrow range of intermediate values. In contrast, LTP triggered near the SWS/REM transition led to marked swaps in synaptic weight ranking. To better understand the interaction between rescaling and restructuring during sleep, we implemented synaptic homeostasis and embossing in a detailed hippocampal-cortical model with both excitatory and inhibitory neurons. Synaptic homeostasis was implemented by weakening potentiation and strengthening depression, while synaptic embossing was simulated by evoking LTP on selected synapses. We observed that synaptic homeostasis facilitates controlled synaptic restructuring. The results imply a mechanism for a cognitive synergy between SWS and REM, and suggest that LTP at the SWS/REM transition critically influences the effect of sleep: Its lack determines synaptic homeostasis, its presence causes

  14. Synaptic Homeostasis and Restructuring across the Sleep-Wake Cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanco, Wilfredo; Pereira, Catia M; Cota, Vinicius R; Souza, Annie C; Rennó-Costa, César; Santos, Sharlene; Dias, Gabriella; Guerreiro, Ana M G; Tort, Adriano B L; Neto, Adrião D; Ribeiro, Sidarta

    2015-05-01

    Sleep is critical for hippocampus-dependent memory consolidation. However, the underlying mechanisms of synaptic plasticity are poorly understood. The central controversy is on whether long-term potentiation (LTP) takes a role during sleep and which would be its specific effect on memory. To address this question, we used immunohistochemistry to measure phosphorylation of Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (pCaMKIIα) in the rat hippocampus immediately after specific sleep-wake states were interrupted. Control animals not exposed to novel objects during waking (WK) showed stable pCaMKIIα levels across the sleep-wake cycle, but animals exposed to novel objects showed a decrease during subsequent slow-wave sleep (SWS) followed by a rebound during rapid-eye-movement sleep (REM). The levels of pCaMKIIα during REM were proportional to cortical spindles near SWS/REM transitions. Based on these results, we modeled sleep-dependent LTP on a network of fully connected excitatory neurons fed with spikes recorded from the rat hippocampus across WK, SWS and REM. Sleep without LTP orderly rescaled synaptic weights to a narrow range of intermediate values. In contrast, LTP triggered near the SWS/REM transition led to marked swaps in synaptic weight ranking. To better understand the interaction between rescaling and restructuring during sleep, we implemented synaptic homeostasis and embossing in a detailed hippocampal-cortical model with both excitatory and inhibitory neurons. Synaptic homeostasis was implemented by weakening potentiation and strengthening depression, while synaptic embossing was simulated by evoking LTP on selected synapses. We observed that synaptic homeostasis facilitates controlled synaptic restructuring. The results imply a mechanism for a cognitive synergy between SWS and REM, and suggest that LTP at the SWS/REM transition critically influences the effect of sleep: Its lack determines synaptic homeostasis, its presence causes synaptic

  15. Synaptically Released Matrix Metalloproteinase Activity in Control of Structural Plasticity and the Cell Surface Distribution of GluA1-AMPA Receptors

    OpenAIRE

    Zsuzsanna Szepesi; Eric Hosy; Blazej Ruszczycki; Monika Bijata; Marta Pyskaty; Arthur Bikbaev; Martin Heine; Daniel Choquet; Leszek Kaczmarek; Jakub Wlodarczyk

    2014-01-01

    Synapses are particularly prone to dynamic alterations and thus play a major role in neuronal plasticity. Dynamic excitatory synapses are located at the membranous neuronal protrusions called dendritic spines. The ability to change synaptic connections involves both alterations at the morphological level and changes in postsynaptic receptor composition. We report that endogenous matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) activity promotes the structural and functional plasticity of local synapses by its ...

  16. Vesicular glutamate transporter 1 orchestrates recruitment of other synaptic vesicle cargo proteins during synaptic vesicle recycling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Ping-Yue; Marrs, Julia; Ryan, Timothy A

    2015-09-11

    A long standing question in synaptic physiology is how neurotransmitter-filled vesicles are rebuilt after exocytosis. Among the first steps in this process is the endocytic retrieval of the transmembrane proteins that are enriched in synaptic vesicles (SVs). At least six types of transmembrane proteins must be recovered, but the rules for how this multiple cargo selection is accomplished are poorly understood. Among these SV cargos is the vesicular glutamate transporter (vGlut). We show here that vGlut1 has a strong influence on the kinetics of retrieval of half of the known SV cargos and that specifically impairing the endocytosis of vGlut1 in turn slows down other SV cargos, demonstrating that cargo retrieval is a collective cargo-driven process. Finally, we demonstrate that different cargos can be retrieved in the same synapse with different kinetics, suggesting that additional post-endocytic sorting steps likely occur in the nerve terminal. PMID:26224632

  17. Synaptic reverberation underlying mnemonic persistent activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, X J

    2001-08-01

    Stimulus-specific persistent neural activity is the neural process underlying active (working) memory. Since its discovery 30 years ago, mnemonic activity has been hypothesized to be sustained by synaptic reverberation in a recurrent circuit. Recently, experimental and modeling work has begun to test the reverberation hypothesis at the cellular level. Moreover, theory has been developed to describe memory storage of an analog stimulus (such as spatial location or eye position), in terms of continuous 'bump attractors' and 'line attractors'. This review summarizes new studies, and discusses insights and predictions from biophysically based models. The stability of a working memory network is recognized as a serious problem; stability can be achieved if reverberation is largely mediated by NMDA receptors at recurrent synapses. PMID:11476885

  18. Alzheimer's disease: synaptic dysfunction and Abeta

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Shankar, Ganesh M

    2009-11-23

    Abstract Synapse loss is an early and invariant feature of Alzheimer\\'s disease (AD) and there is a strong correlation between the extent of synapse loss and the severity of dementia. Accordingly, it has been proposed that synapse loss underlies the memory impairment evident in the early phase of AD and that since plasticity is important for neuronal viability, persistent disruption of plasticity may account for the frank cell loss typical of later phases of the disease. Extensive multi-disciplinary research has implicated the amyloid β-protein (Aβ) in the aetiology of AD and here we review the evidence that non-fibrillar soluble forms of Aβ are mediators of synaptic compromise. We also discuss the possible mechanisms of Aβ synaptotoxicity and potential targets for therapeutic intervention.

  19. Synaptic Transmission An Information-Theoretic Perspective

    CERN Document Server

    Manwani, A

    1998-01-01

    Here we analyze synaptic transmission from an information-theoretic perspective. We derive closed-form expressions for the lower-bounds on the capacity of a simple model of a cortical synapse under two explicit coding paradigms. Under the ``signal estimation'' paradigm, we assume the signal to be encoded in the mean firing rate of a Poisson neuron. The performance of an optimal linear estimator of the signal then provides a lower bound on the capacity for signal estimation. Under the ``signal detection'' paradigm, the presence or absence of the signal has to be detected. Performance of the optimal spike detector allows us to compute a lower bound on the capacity for signal detection. We find that single synapses (for empirically measured parameter values) transmit information poorly but significant improvement can be achieved with a small amount of redundancy.

  20. Synaptic variability in a cortical neuromorphic circuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahvash, Mohammad; Parker, Alice C

    2013-03-01

    Variable behavior has been observed in several mechanisms found in biological neurons, resulting in changes in neural behavior that might be useful to capture in neuromorphic circuits. This paper presents a neuromorphic cortical neuron with synaptic neurotransmitter-release variability, which is designed to be used in neural networks as part of the Biomimetic Real-Time Cortex project. This neuron has been designed and simulated using carbon nanotube (CNT) transistors, which is one of several nanotechnologies under consideration to meet the challenges of scale presented by the cortex. Some research results suggest that some instances of variability are stochastic, while others indicate that some instances of variability are chaotic. In this paper, both possible sources of variability are considered by embedding either Gaussian noise or a chaotic signal into the neuromorphic or synaptic circuit and observing the simulation results. In order to embed chaotic behavior into the neuromorphic circuit, a chaotic signal generator circuit is presented, implemented with CNT transistors that could be embedded in the electronic neural circuit, and simulated using CNT SPICE models. The circuit uses a chaotic piecewise linear 1-D map implemented by switched-current circuits. The simulation results presented in this paper illustrate that neurotransmitter-release variability plays a beneficial role in the reliability of spike generation. In an examination of this reliability, the precision of spike timing in the CNT circuit simulations is found to be dependent on stimulus (postsynaptic potential) transients. Postsynaptic potentials with low neurotransmitter release variability or without neurotransmitter release variability produce imprecise spike trains, whereas postsynaptic potentials with high neurotransmitter-release variability produce spike trains with reproducible timing. PMID:24808313

  1. Inhibitory control of ascending glutamatergic projections to the lamprey respiratory rhythm generator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cinelli, Elenia; Mutolo, Donatella; Contini, Massimo; Pantaleo, Tito; Bongianni, Fulvia

    2016-06-21

    Neurons within the vagal motoneuron region of the lamprey have been shown to modulate respiratory activity via ascending excitatory projections to the paratrigeminal respiratory group (pTRG), the proposed respiratory rhythm generator. The present study was performed on in vitro brainstem preparations of the lamprey to provide a characterization of ascending projections within the whole respiratory motoneuron column with regard to the distribution of neurons projecting to the pTRG and related neurochemical markers. Injections of Neurobiotin were performed into the pTRG and the presence of glutamate, GABA and glycine immunoreactivity was investigated by double-labeling experiments. Interestingly, retrogradely labeled neurons were found not only in the vagal region, but also in the facial and glossopharyngeal motoneuron regions. They were also present within the sensory octavolateral area (OLA). The results show for the first time that neurons projecting to the pTRG are immunoreactive for glutamate, surrounded by GABA-immunoreactive structures and associated with the presence of glycinergic cells. Consistently, GABAA or glycine receptor blockade within the investigated regions increased the respiratory frequency. Furthermore, microinjections of agonists and antagonists of ionotropic glutamate receptors and of the GABAA receptor agonist muscimol showed that OLA neurons do not contribute to respiratory rhythm generation. The results provide evidence that glutamatergic ascending pathways to the pTRG are subject to a potent inhibitory control and suggest that disinhibition is one important mechanism subserving their function. The general characteristics of inhibitory control involved in rhythmic activities, such as respiration, appear to be highly conserved throughout vertebrate evolution. PMID:27058146

  2. Maternal milk as methylmercury source for suckling mice: neurotoxic effects involved with the cerebellar glutamatergic system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manfroi, C B; Schwalm, F D; Cereser, V; Abreu, F; Oliveira, A; Bizarro, L; Rocha, J B T; Frizzo, M E S; Souza, D O; Farina, M

    2004-09-01

    Methylmercury (MeHg) is a highly neurotoxic compound and several studies have reported intoxication signs in children whose mothers were exposed to this environmental toxicant. Although it is well established that the in utero exposure to MeHg causes neurological deficits in animals and humans, there is no evidence of the exclusive contribution of lactational exposure to MeHg as a possible cause of neurotoxicity in the offspring. In this study, we investigated the exclusive contribution of MeHg exposure through maternal milk on biochemical parameters related to the glutamatergic homeostasis (glutamate uptake by slices) and to the oxidative stress (total and nonprotein sulfhydryl groups, nonprotein hydroperoxides, glutathione peroxidase and catalase activities) in the cerebellum of suckling mice (Swiss albino). The same parameters were also evaluated in the cerebellum of mothers. Our results showed, for the first time, that lactational exposure to MeHg caused a high percent of inhibition (50%) on glutamate uptake by cerebellar slices in pups. Contrarily, this effect was not observed in mothers, which were submitted to a direct oral exposure to MeHg (15 mg/l in drinking water). In addition, behavioral/functional changes were observed in the weaning mice exposed to MeHg. It was observed an increase in the levels of nonprotein hydroperoxides in cerebellum, and this increase was negatively correlated to the glutamate uptake by cerebellar slices. This study indicates that (1) the exposure of lactating mice to MeHg causes inhibition of the glutamate uptake by cerebellar slices in the offspring; (2) this inhibitory effect seems to be related to increased levels of hydroperoxide. PMID:15201443

  3. Evidence for a glutamatergic projection from the zona incerta to the basal ganglia of rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heise, Claire E; Mitrofanis, John

    2004-01-19

    This study explores the organisation and neurochemical nature of the projections from the zona incerta (ZI) to the basal ganglia. Sprague-Dawley rats were anaesthetised with ketamine (100 mg/kg) and Rompun (10 mg/kg), and injections of cholera toxin subunit B were made into each of the following nuclei: the ZI, the substantia nigra (SN), the pedunculopontine tegmental nucleus (PpT), and the entopeduncular nucleus (Ep). Brains were aldehyde fixed, sectioned, and processed using standard methods. Tracer-labelled sections were then doubly labelled with antibodies to glutamate (Glu), nitric oxide synthase (NOS), parvalbumin (Pv), or glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD; the latter two are markers for GABAergic cells); these neurochemicals characterise most types of ZI cells. After ZI injections, labelling was nonuniform across the different basal ganglia nuclei. The bulk of labelling, both anterograde and retrograde, was seen in the SN and PpT and, to a lesser extent, within the other nuclei of the basal ganglia (e.g., caudate-putamen, globus pallidus, subthalamus, Ep). In the SN, labelling was found in both major parts of the nucleus, the pars compacta and pars reticulata. Within the PpT, however, the bulk of labelling was limited to only one of the two sectors of the nucleus, namely, the pars dissipata (PpTd). The pars compacta of the PpT (PpTc) remained largely free of labelled profiles. After CTb injections into three basal ganglia nuclei (SN, PpT, Ep), most labelled cells in the ZI were glutamate+ and very few were NOS+ or gamma-aminobutyric acidergic. Overall, the results indicate that the ZI is in a position to influence preferentially the activity of the SN and PpTd of the basal ganglia via an excitatory, glutamatergic input. PMID:14689481

  4. Milnacipran inhibits glutamatergic N-Methyl-D-Aspartate receptor activity in Spinal Dorsal Horn Neurons

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    Kohno Tatsuro

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Antidepressants, which are widely used for treatment of chronic pain, are thought to have antinociceptive effects by blockade of serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake. However, these drugs also interact with various receptors such as excitatory glutamatergic receptors. Thermal hyperalgesia was induced by intrathecal injection of NMDA in rats. Paw withdrawal latency was measured after intrathecal injection of antidepressants. The effects of antidepressants on the NMDA and AMPA-induced responses were examined in lamina II neurons of rat spinal cord slices using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique. The effects of milnacipran followed by application of NMDA on pERK activation were also investigated in the spinal cord. Results Intrathecal injection of milnacipran (0.1 μmol, but not citalopram (0.1 μmol and desipramine (0.1 μmol, followed by intrathecal injection of NMDA (1 μg suppressed thermal hyperalgesia. Milnacipran (100 μM reduced the amplitude of NMDA (56 ± 3 %, 64 ± 5 % of control-, but not AMPA (98 ± 5 %, 97 ± 5 % of control-mediated currents induced by exogenous application and dorsal root stimulation, respectively. Citalopram (100 μM and desipramine (30 μM had no effect on the amplitude of exogenous NMDA-induced currents. The number of pERK-positive neurons in the group treated with milnacipran (100 μM, but not citalopram (100 μM or desipramine (30 μM, followed by NMDA (100 μM was significantly lower compared with the NMDA-alone group. Conclusions The antinociceptive effect of milnacipran may be dependent on the drug’s direct modulation of NMDA receptors in the superficial dorsal horn. Furthermore, in addition to inhibiting the reuptake of monoamines, glutamate NMDA receptors are also important for analgesia induced by milnacipran.

  5. In vivo and in vitro effects of multiple sclerosis immunomodulatory therapeutics on glutamatergic excitotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luchtman, Dirk; Gollan, René; Ellwardt, Erik; Birkenstock, Jérôme; Robohm, Kerstin; Siffrin, Volker; Zipp, Frauke

    2016-03-01

    In multiple sclerosis (MS), a candidate downstream mechanism for neuronal injury is glutamate (Glu)-induced excitotoxicity, leading to toxic increases in intraneuronal Ca(2+) . Here, we used in vivo two-photon imaging in the brain of TN-XXL transgenic Ca(2+) reporter mice to test whether promising oral MS therapeutics, namely fingolimod, dimethyl fumarate, and their respective metabolites fingolimod-phosphate and monomethyl fumarate, can protect neurons against acute glutamatergic excitotoxic damage. We also assessed whether these drugs can protect against excitotoxicity in vitro using primary cortical neurons, and whether they can directly inhibit Glu release from pathogenic T-helper 17 lymphocytes. In vivo, direct and acute (1 h) administration of 100 mM Glu to the brainstem resulted in a rapid and significant up-regulation in neuronal Ca(2+) signaling as well as morphological excitotoxic changes that were attenuated by the NMDA-receptor antagonist MK801. Direct CNS administration of MS drugs prior to Glu significantly delayed or reduced, but did not prevent the neuronal Ca(2+) increase or morphological changes. In vitro, prolonged (24 h) treatment of primary neurons with the fumarates significantly protected against neurotoxicity induced by Glu as well as NMDA, similar to MK801. Furthermore, monomethyl fumerate significantly reduced Glu release from pathogenic T-helper 17 lymphocytes. Overall, these data suggest that MS drugs may mediate neuroprotection via excitotoxicity modulating effects. Evidence suggests MS pathogenesis may involve neuronal excitotoxicity, induced by local release of glutamate. However, current MS drugs, including dimethyl fumerate (DMF) and fingolimod (FTY720) are largely anti-inflammatory and not yet fully tested for their neuroprotective potential. Here, we show that the drugs, in particular DMF metabolite monomethyl fumerate (MMF), protect neurons by excitotoxicity modulating effects. Th17, T-helper 17. PMID:26662167

  6. Coping with dehydration: sympathetic activation and regulation of glutamatergic transmission in the hypothalamic PVN.

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    Bardgett, Megan E; Chen, Qing-Hui; Guo, Qing; Calderon, Alfredo S; Andrade, Mary Ann; Toney, Glenn M

    2014-06-01

    Autonomic and endocrine profiles of chronic hypertension and heart failure resemble those of acute dehydration. Importantly, all of these conditions are associated with exaggerated sympathetic nerve activity (SNA) driven by glutamatergic activation of the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN). Here, studies sought to gain insight into mechanisms of disease by determining the role of PVN ionotropic glutamate receptors in supporting SNA and mean arterial pressure (MAP) during dehydration and by elucidating mechanisms regulating receptor activity. Blockade of PVN N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors reduced (P chloralose-anesthetized dehydrated (DH) (48 h water deprivation) rats, but had no effect in euhydrated (EH) controls. Blockade of PVN α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptors had no effect in either group. NMDA in PVN caused dose-dependent increases of renal SNA and MAP in both groups, but the maximum agonist evoked response (Emax) of the renal SNA response was greater (P < 0.05) in DH rats. The latter was not explained by increased PVN expression of NMDA receptor NR1 subunit protein, increased PVN neuronal excitability, or decreased brain water content. Interestingly, PVN injection of the pan-specific excitatory amino acid transporter (EAAT) inhibitor DL-threo-β-benzyloxyaspartic acid produced smaller sympathoexcitatory and pressor responses in DH rats, which was associated with reduced glial expression of EAAT2 in PVN. Like chronic hypertension and heart failure, dehydration increases excitatory NMDA receptor tone in PVN. Reduced glial-mediated glutamate uptake was identified as a key contributing factor. Defective glutamate uptake in PVN could therefore be an important, but as yet unexplored, mechanism driving sympathetic hyperactivity in chronic cardiovascular diseases. PMID:24671240

  7. Distinct synaptic and neurochemical changes to the granule cell-CA3 projection in Bassoon mutant mice.

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    Sandra Dieni

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Proper synaptic function depends on a finely-tuned balance between events such as protein synthesis and structural organization. In particular, the functional loss of just one synaptic-related protein can have a profound impact on overall neuronal network function. To this end, we used a mutant mouse model harboring a mutated form of the presynaptic scaffolding protein Bassoon (Bsn, which is phenotypically characterized by: (i spontaneous generalized epileptic seizure activity, representing a chronically-imbalanced neuronal network, and (ii a dramatic increase in hippocampal brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF protein concentration, a key player in synaptic plasticity. Detailed morphological and neurochemical analyses revealed that the increased BDNF levels are associated with: I. modified neuropeptide distribution, II. perturbed expression of selected markers of synaptic activation or plasticity, III. subtle changes to microglial structure, and IV. morphological alterations to the mossy fiber synapse. These findings emphasize the important contribution of Bassoon protein to normal hippocampal function, and further characterize the Bsn mutant as a useful model for studying the effects of chronic changes to network activity.

  8. Acetylated Tau Obstructs KIBRA-Mediated Signaling in Synaptic Plasticity and Promotes Tauopathy-Related Memory Loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tracy, Tara E; Sohn, Peter Dongmin; Minami, S Sakura; Wang, Chao; Min, Sang-Won; Li, Yaqiao; Zhou, Yungui; Le, David; Lo, Iris; Ponnusamy, Ravikumar; Cong, Xin; Schilling, Birgit; Ellerby, Lisa M; Huganir, Richard L; Gan, Li

    2016-04-20

    Tau toxicity has been implicated in the emergence of synaptic dysfunction in Alzheimer's disease (AD), but the mechanism by which tau alters synapse physiology and leads to cognitive decline is unclear. Here we report abnormal acetylation of K274 and K281 on tau, identified in AD brains, promotes memory loss and disrupts synaptic plasticity by reducing postsynaptic KIdney/BRAin (KIBRA) protein, a memory-associated protein. Transgenic mice expressing human tau with lysine-to-glutamine mutations to mimic K274 and K281 acetylation (tauKQ) exhibit AD-related memory deficits and impaired hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP). TauKQ reduces synaptic KIBRA levels and disrupts activity-induced postsynaptic actin remodeling and AMPA receptor insertion. The LTP deficit was rescued by promoting actin polymerization or by KIBRA expression. In AD patients with dementia, we found enhanced tau acetylation is linked to loss of KIBRA. These findings suggest a novel mechanism by which pathogenic tau causes synaptic dysfunction and cognitive decline in AD pathogenesis. PMID:27041503

  9. Sensitivity of binding of high-affinity dopamine receptor radioligands to increased synaptic dopamine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gatley, S J; Gifford, A N; Carroll, F I; Volkow, N D

    2000-12-15

    PET and SPECT studies have documented that D2 radioligands of moderate affinity, but not radioligands of high affinity, are sensitive to pharmacological challenges that alter synaptic dopamine levels. The objective of this work was to determine whether the brain kinetics of high-affinity radioligands for dopamine D1 ([(3)H]SCH 23390) and D2 ([(123)I]epidepride) receptors were altered by a prolonged elevation of synaptic dopamine induced by the potent cocaine analog RTI-55. Mice were injected intravenously with radioligands either 30 min after or 4 h before intraperitoneal administration of RTI-55 (2 mg/kg). In separate experiments, the pharmacological effects of RTI-55 were assessed biochemically by measuring uptake of dopamine in synaptosomes prepared from RTI-treated mice and behaviorally by monitoring locomotor activity. Consistent with the expected elevation of synaptic dopamine, RTI-55 induced a long-lasting decrement in dopamine uptake measured ex vivo, and a prolonged increase in locomotor activity. RTI-55 injected prior to the radioligands induced a significant (P epidepride at 15 min, relative to saline-treated controls, but there were no differences between the two groups at later time-points. For [(3)H]SCH 23390, both initial striatal uptake and subsequent clearance were slightly increased by preadministration of RTI-55. Administration of RTI-55 4 h after the radioligands (i.e., when it was presumed that a state of near equilibrium binding of the radioligands had been reached), was associated with a significant reduction of striatal radioactivity for both radiotracers. Our results are consistent with increased competition between dopamine and radioligand for binding to both D1 and D2 receptors after treatment with RTI-55. We suggest that the magnitude of the competition is reduced by failure of the receptor binding of high-affinity radioligands to rapidly attain equilibrium. PMID:11044896

  10. Overelaborated synaptic architecture and reduced synaptomatrix glycosylation in a Drosophila classic galactosemia disease model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jumbo-Lucioni, Patricia; Parkinson, William; Broadie, Kendal

    2014-12-01

    Classic galactosemia (CG) is an autosomal recessive disorder resulting from loss of galactose-1-phosphate uridyltransferase (GALT), which catalyzes conversion of galactose-1-phosphate and uridine diphosphate (UDP)-glucose to glucose-1-phosphate and UDP-galactose, immediately upstream of UDP-N-acetylgalactosamine and UDP-N-acetylglucosamine synthesis. These four UDP-sugars are essential donors for driving the synthesis of glycoproteins and glycolipids, which heavily decorate cell surfaces and extracellular spaces. In addition to acute, potentially lethal neonatal symptoms, maturing individuals with CG develop striking neurodevelopmental, motor and cognitive impairments. Previous studies suggest that neurological symptoms are associated with glycosylation defects, with CG recently being described as a congenital disorder of glycosylation (CDG), showing defects in both N- and O-linked glycans. Here, we characterize behavioral traits, synaptic development and glycosylated synaptomatrix formation in a GALT-deficient Drosophila disease model. Loss of Drosophila GALT (dGALT) greatly impairs coordinated movement and results in structural overelaboration and architectural abnormalities at the neuromuscular junction (NMJ). Dietary galactose and mutation of galactokinase (dGALK) or UDP-glucose dehydrogenase (sugarless) genes are identified, respectively, as critical environmental and genetic modifiers of behavioral and cellular defects. Assaying the NMJ extracellular synaptomatrix with a broad panel of lectin probes reveals profound alterations in dGALT mutants, including depletion of galactosyl, N-acetylgalactosamine and fucosylated horseradish peroxidase (HRP) moieties, which are differentially corrected by dGALK co-removal and sugarless overexpression. Synaptogenesis relies on trans-synaptic signals modulated by this synaptomatrix carbohydrate environment, and dGALT-null NMJs display striking changes in heparan sulfate proteoglycan (HSPG) co-receptor and Wnt ligand levels

  11. Overelaborated synaptic architecture and reduced synaptomatrix glycosylation in a Drosophila classic galactosemia disease model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Jumbo-Lucioni

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Classic galactosemia (CG is an autosomal recessive disorder resulting from loss of galactose-1-phosphate uridyltransferase (GALT, which catalyzes conversion of galactose-1-phosphate and uridine diphosphate (UDP-glucose to glucose-1-phosphate and UDP-galactose, immediately upstream of UDP–N-acetylgalactosamine and UDP–N-acetylglucosamine synthesis. These four UDP-sugars are essential donors for driving the synthesis of glycoproteins and glycolipids, which heavily decorate cell surfaces and extracellular spaces. In addition to acute, potentially lethal neonatal symptoms, maturing individuals with CG develop striking neurodevelopmental, motor and cognitive impairments. Previous studies suggest that neurological symptoms are associated with glycosylation defects, with CG recently being described as a congenital disorder of glycosylation (CDG, showing defects in both N- and O-linked glycans. Here, we characterize behavioral traits, synaptic development and glycosylated synaptomatrix formation in a GALT-deficient Drosophila disease model. Loss of Drosophila GALT (dGALT greatly impairs coordinated movement and results in structural overelaboration and architectural abnormalities at the neuromuscular junction (NMJ. Dietary galactose and mutation of galactokinase (dGALK or UDP-glucose dehydrogenase (sugarless genes are identified, respectively, as critical environmental and genetic modifiers of behavioral and cellular defects. Assaying the NMJ extracellular synaptomatrix with a broad panel of lectin probes reveals profound alterations in dGALT mutants, including depletion of galactosyl, N-acetylgalactosamine and fucosylated horseradish peroxidase (HRP moieties, which are differentially corrected by dGALK co-removal and sugarless overexpression. Synaptogenesis relies on trans-synaptic signals modulated by this synaptomatrix carbohydrate environment, and dGALT-null NMJs display striking changes in heparan sulfate proteoglycan (HSPG co-receptor and Wnt

  12. Taurine content in different brain structures during ageing: effect on hippocampal synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suárez, Luz M; Muñoz, María-Dolores; Martín Del Río, Rafael; Solís, José M

    2016-05-01

    A reduction in taurine content accompanies the ageing process in many tissues. In fact, the decline of brain taurine levels has been associated with cognitive deficits whereas chronic administration of taurine seems to ameliorate age-related deficits such as memory acquisition and retention. In the present study, using rats of three age groups (young, adult and aged) we determined whether the content of taurine and other amino acids (glutamate, serine, glutamine, glycine, alanine and GABA) was altered during ageing in different brain areas (cerebellum, cortex and hippocampus) as well non-brain tissues (heart, kidney, liver and plasma). Moreover, using hippocampal slices we tested whether ageing affects synaptic function and plasticity. These parameters were also determined in aged rats fed with either taurine-devoid or taurine-supplemented diets. With age, we found heterogeneous changes in amino acid content depending on the amino acid type and the tissue. In the case of taurine, its content was reduced in the cerebellum of adult and aged rats, but it remained unchanged in the hippocampus, cortex, heart and liver. The synaptic response amplitude decreased in aged rats, although the late phase of long-term synaptic potentiation (late-LTP), a taurine-dependent process, was not altered. Our study highlights the stability of taurine content in the hippocampus during ageing regardless of whether taurine was present in the diet, which is consistent with the lack of changes detected in late-LTP. These results indicate that the beneficial effects of taurine supplementation might be independent of the replenishment of taurine stores. PMID:26803657

  13. Synapse geometry and receptor dynamics modulate synaptic strength.

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    Dominik Freche

    Full Text Available Synaptic transmission relies on several processes, such as the location of a released vesicle, the number and type of receptors, trafficking between the postsynaptic density (PSD and extrasynaptic compartment, as well as the synapse organization. To study the impact of these parameters on excitatory synaptic transmission, we present a computational model for the fast AMPA-receptor mediated synaptic current. We show that in addition to the vesicular release probability, due to variations in their release locations and the AMPAR distribution, the postsynaptic current amplitude has a large variance, making a synapse an intrinsic unreliable device. We use our model to examine our experimental data recorded from CA1 mice hippocampal slices to study the differences between mEPSC and evoked EPSC variance. The synaptic current but not the coefficient of variation is maximal when the active zone where vesicles are released is apposed to the PSD. Moreover, we find that for certain type of synapses, receptor trafficking can affect the magnitude of synaptic depression. Finally, we demonstrate that perisynaptic microdomains located outside the PSD impacts synaptic transmission by regulating the number of desensitized receptors and their trafficking to the PSD. We conclude that geometrical modifications, reorganization of the PSD or perisynaptic microdomains modulate synaptic strength, as the mechanisms underlying long-term plasticity.

  14. Pannexin 1 regulates bidirectional hippocampal synaptic plasticity in adult mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardiles, Alvaro O.; Flores-Muñoz, Carolina; Toro-Ayala, Gabriela; Cárdenas, Ana M.; Palacios, Adrian G.; Muñoz, Pablo; Fuenzalida, Marco; Sáez, Juan C.; Martínez, Agustín D.

    2014-01-01

    The threshold for bidirectional modification of synaptic plasticity is known to be controlled by several factors, including the balance between protein phosphorylation and dephosphorylation, postsynaptic free Ca2+ concentration and NMDA receptor (NMDAR) composition of GluN2 subunits. Pannexin 1 (Panx1), a member of the integral membrane protein family, has been shown to form non-selective channels and to regulate the induction of synaptic plasticity as well as hippocampal-dependent learning. Although Panx1 channels have been suggested to play a role in excitatory long-term potentiation (LTP), it remains unknown whether these channels also modulate long-term depression (LTD) or the balance between both types of synaptic plasticity. To study how Panx1 contributes to excitatory synaptic efficacy, we examined the age-dependent effects of eliminating or blocking Panx1 channels on excitatory synaptic plasticity within the CA1 region of the mouse hippocampus. By using different protocols to induce bidirectional synaptic plasticity, Panx1 channel blockade or lack of Panx1 were found to enhance LTP, whereas both conditions precluded the induction of LTD in adults, but not in young animals. These findings suggest that Panx1 channels restrain the sliding threshold for the induction of synaptic plasticity and underlying brain mechanisms of learning and memory. PMID:25360084

  15. Pre-synaptic control of remote fear extinction in the neocortex

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    Gisella eVetere

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Consolidation of remote memory enhances immediate early genes induction (IEGs, augments the expression of the presynaptic growth associated protein 43 (GAP-43, and increases the density and size of dendritic spines in anterior cingulate (aCC and infra-limbic (ILC cortices. Remote memory extinction, however, does not uniformly alter consolidation-induced structural changes. In the aCC, the density, but not the size, of spines is reset to pseudo-conditioning levels while novel thin spines are formed in the ILC. Whether IEGs and GAP-43 also undergo region-specific changes upon remote memory extinction is undetermined. Here we confirm in the same batch of mice that c-Fos induction and GAP-43 expression are increased in both the aCC and the ILC 36 days after contextual fear conditioning. We then show that, in both regions, remote memory extinction is associated with decrease of c-Fos induction but no change in GAP-43 expression thus revealing similar, although protein-specific, pre-synaptic adaptations in aCC and ILC neurons. These observations, in addition to our previous report of region-specific post-synaptic structural changes, disclose a complex pattern of extinction-driven neocortical alterations suitable to support erasure or reinstatement of fear according to the environment demand.

  16. Sonic hedgehog and retinoic Acid induce bone marrow-derived stem cells to differentiate into glutamatergic neural cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Zhenhai; Wu, Shixing; Liu, Zhen; Lin, Haiyan; Chen, Lei; Yuan, Xinli; Zhang, Zhiying; Liu, Fang; Zhang, Chuansen

    2015-01-01

    Studies have showed that transplanted stem cells in the inner ear won't regenerate to replace the damaged sensory hair cells. They can spontaneously differentiate into mesenchymal cells and fibrocytes in the damaged inner ear. Only mature sensory cells of MSCs-derived possess the great potency for cell transplantation in the treatment of sensorineural hearing loss. So, we try to establish an efficient generation of the glutamatergic sensory neural phenotype for the cell transplantation of the hearing loss. We isolated MSCs from femoral and tibial bones according to their adherence to culture dishes. After purification, proliferation, and passaged, cells became homogeneous in appearance, showing more uniformity and grew in a monolayer with a typical spindle-shape morphology. The cell surface markers were assessed using FACS to characterize the isolated cells. For neural induction to harvest the glutamatergic sensory neurons, passage 3 MSCs were incubated with preinduced medium for 24 hr, and neural-induced medium for an additional 14 days. The cells exhibit a typical neural shape. RT-PCR analysis indicated that the mRNA levels of the neural cell marker nestin, Tau, MAP-2, β-tubulin III, GluR-3, and GluR-4 were higher compared with primary MSCs. Immunohistochemistry and western-blotting proofed that nestin, MAP-2, β-tubulin III, and GluR-4 proteins indeed exhibit their expression difference in the induced cells compared to the MSCs. We show an efficient protocol by the combined applications of Sonic Hedgehog (Shh) and Retinoic Acid (RA) to induce MSCs to differentiate into the glutamatergic sensory neuron which were identified from the morphological, biochemical, and molecular characteristics. PMID:24547891

  17. Glutamatergic and GABAergic energy metabolism measured in the rat brain by (13) C NMR spectroscopy at 14.1 T.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, João M N; Gruetter, Rolf

    2013-09-01

    Energy metabolism supports both inhibitory and excitatory neurotransmission processes. This study investigated the specific contribution of astrocytic metabolism to γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) synthesis and inhibitory GABAergic neurotransmission that remained to be ilucidated in vivo. Therefore, we measured (13)C incorporation into brain metabolites by dynamic (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy at 14.1 T in rats under α-chloralose anaesthesia during infusion of [1,6-(13)C]glucose. The enhanced sensitivity at 14.1 T allowed to quantify incorporation of (13) C into the three aliphatic carbons of GABA non-invasively. Metabolic fluxes were determined with a mathematical model of brain metabolism comprising glial, glutamatergic and GABAergic compartments. GABA synthesis rate was 0.11 ± 0.01 μmol/g/min. GABA-glutamine cycle was 0.053 ± 0.003 μmol/g/min and accounted for 22 ± 1% of total neurotransmitter cycling between neurons and glia. Cerebral glucose oxidation was 0.47 ± 0.02 μmol/g/min, of which 35 ± 1% and 7 ± 1% was diverted to the glutamatergic and GABAergic tricarboxylic acid cycles, respectively. The remaining fraction of glucose oxidation was in glia, where 12 ± 1% of the TCA cycle flux was dedicated to oxidation of GABA. 16 ± 2% of glutamine synthesis was provided to GABAergic neurons. We conclude that substantial metabolic activity occurs in GABAergic neurons and that glial metabolism supports both glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons in the living rat brain. PMID:23745684

  18. A Voltage Mode Memristor Bridge Synaptic Circuit with Memristor Emulators

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    Leon Chua

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available A memristor bridge neural circuit which is able to perform signed synaptic weighting was proposed in our previous study, where the synaptic operation was verified via software simulation of the mathematical model of the HP memristor. This study is an extension of the previous work advancing toward the circuit implementation where the architecture of the memristor bridge synapse is built with memristor emulator circuits. In addition, a simple neural network which performs both synaptic weighting and summation is built by combining memristor emulators-based synapses and differential amplifier circuits. The feasibility of the memristor bridge neural circuit is verified via SPICE simulations.

  19. Spikes Synchronization in Neural Networks with Synaptic Plasticity

    CERN Document Server

    Borges, Rafael R; Batista, Antonio M; Caldas, Iberê L; Borges, Fernando S; Lameu, Ewandson L

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we investigated the neural spikes synchronisation in a neural network with synaptic plasticity and external perturbation. In the simulations the neural dynamics is described by the Hodgkin Huxley model considering chemical synapses (excitatory) among neurons. According to neural spikes synchronisation is expected that a perturbation produce non synchronised regimes. However, in the literature there are works showing that the combination of synaptic plasticity and external perturbation may generate synchronised regime. This article describes the effect of the synaptic plasticity on the synchronisation, where we consider a perturbation with a uniform distribution. This study is relevant to researches of neural disorders control.

  20. Characterizing synaptic protein development in human visual cortex enables alignment of synaptic age with rat visual cortex

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    Joshua G.A Pinto

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Although many potential neuroplasticity based therapies have been developed in the lab, few have translated into established clinical treatments for human neurologic or neuropsychiatric diseases. Animal models, especially of the visual system, have shaped our understanding of neuroplasticity by characterizing the mechanisms that promote neural changes and defining timing of the sensitive period. The lack of knowledge about development of synaptic plasticity mechanisms in human cortex, and about alignment of synaptic age between animals and humans, has limited translation of neuroplasticity therapies. In this study, we quantified expression of a set of highly conserved pre- and post-synaptic proteins (Synapsin, Synaptophysin, PSD-95, Gephyrin and found that synaptic development in human primary visual cortex continues into late childhood. Indeed, this is many years longer than suggested by neuroanatomical studies and points to a prolonged sensitive period for plasticity in human sensory cortex. In addition, during childhood we found waves of inter-individual variability that are different for the 4 proteins and include a stage during early development (<1 year when only Gephyrin has high inter-individual variability. We also found that pre- and post-synaptic protein balances develop quickly, suggesting that maturation of certain synaptic functions happens within the first year or two of life. A multidimensional analysis (principle component analysis showed that most of the variance was captured by the sum of the 4 synaptic proteins. We used that sum to compare development of human and rat visual cortex and identified a simple linear equation that provides robust alignment of synaptic age between humans and rats. Alignment of synaptic ages is important for age-appropriate targeting and effective translation of neuroplasticity therapies from the lab to the clinic.

  1. Cationic influences upon synaptic transmission at the hair cell-afferent fiber synapse of the frog

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cochran, S. L.

    1995-01-01

    The concentrations of inorganic cations (K+, Na+, and Ca2+) bathing the isolated frog labyrinth were varied in order to assess their role in influencing and mediating synaptic transmission at the hair cell-afferent fiber synapse. Experiments employed intracellular recordings of synaptic activity from VIIIth nerve afferents. Recordings were digitized continuously at 50 kHz, and excitatory postsynaptic potentials were detected and parameters quantified by computer algorithms. Particular attention was focused on cationic effects upon excitatory postsynaptic potential frequency of occurrence and excitatory postsynaptic potential amplitude, in order to discriminate between pre- and postsynaptic actions. Because the small size of afferents preclude long term stable recordings, alterations in cationic concentrations were applied transiently and their peak effects on synaptic activity were assessed. Increases in extracellular K+ concentration of a few millimolar produced a large increase in the frequency of occurrence of excitatory postsynaptic potentials with little change in amplitude, indicating that release of transmitter from the hair cell is tightly coupled to its membrane potential. Increasing extracellular Na+ concentration resulted in an increase in excitatory postsynaptic potential amplitude with no significant change in excitatory postsynaptic potential frequency of occurrence, suggesting that the transmitter-gated subsynaptic channel conducts Na+ ions. Decreases in extracellular Ca2+ concentration had little effect upon excitatory postsynaptic potential frequency, but increased excitatory postsynaptic potential frequency and amplitude. These findings suggest that at higher concentrations Ca2+ act presynaptically to prevent transmitter release and postsynaptically to prevent Na+ influx during the generation of the excitatory postsynaptic potential. The influences of these ions on synaptic activity at this synapse are remarkably similar to those reported at the

  2. Synaptic remodeling of neuronal circuits in early retinal degeneration

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    Florentina eSoto

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Photoreceptor degenerations are a major cause of blindness and among the most common forms of neurodegeneration in humans. Studies of mouse models revealed that synaptic dysfunction often precedes photoreceptor degeneration, and that abnormal synaptic input from photoreceptors to bipolar cells causes circuits in the inner retina to become hyperactive. Here, we provide a brief overview of frequently used mouse models of photoreceptor degenerations. We then discuss insights into circuit remodeling triggered by early synaptic dysfunction in the outer and hyperactivity in the inner retina. We discuss these insights in the context of other experimental manipulations of synaptic function and activity. Knowledge of the plasticity and early remodeling of retinal circuits will be critical for the design of successful vision rescue strategies.

  3. Synaptic unreliability facilitates information transmission in balanced cortical populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gatys, Leon A.; Ecker, Alexander S.; Tchumatchenko, Tatjana; Bethge, Matthias

    2015-06-01

    Synaptic unreliability is one of the major sources of biophysical noise in the brain. In the context of neural information processing, it is a central question how neural systems can afford this unreliability. Here we examine how synaptic noise affects signal transmission in cortical circuits, where excitation and inhibition are thought to be tightly balanced. Surprisingly, we find that in this balanced state synaptic response variability actually facilitates information transmission, rather than impairing it. In particular, the transmission of fast-varying signals benefits from synaptic noise, as it instantaneously increases the amount of information shared between presynaptic signal and postsynaptic current. Furthermore we show that the beneficial effect of noise is based on a very general mechanism which contrary to stochastic resonance does not reach an optimum at a finite noise level.

  4. Synaptic remodeling of neuronal circuits in early retinal degeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soto, Florentina; Kerschensteiner, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Photoreceptor degenerations are a major cause of blindness and among the most common forms of neurodegeneration in humans. Studies of mouse models revealed that synaptic dysfunction often precedes photoreceptor degeneration, and that abnormal synaptic input from photoreceptors to bipolar cells causes circuits in the inner retina to become hyperactive. Here, we provide a brief overview of frequently used mouse models of photoreceptor degenerations. We then discuss insights into circuit remodeling triggered by early synaptic dysfunction in the outer and hyperactivity in the inner retina. We discuss these insights in the context of other experimental manipulations of synaptic function and activity. Knowledge of the plasticity and early remodeling of retinal circuits will be critical for the design of successful vision rescue strategies. PMID:26500497

  5. Proteomic Analysis of Unbounded Cellular Compartments: Synaptic Clefts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loh, Ken H; Stawski, Philipp S; Draycott, Austin S; Udeshi, Namrata D; Lehrman, Emily K; Wilton, Daniel K; Svinkina, Tanya; Deerinck, Thomas J; Ellisman, Mark H; Stevens, Beth; Carr, Steven A; Ting, Alice Y

    2016-08-25

    Cellular compartments that cannot be biochemically isolated are challenging to characterize. Here we demonstrate the proteomic characterization of the synaptic clefts that exist at both excitatory and inhibitory synapses. Normal brain function relies on the careful balance of these opposing neural connections, and understanding how this balance is achieved relies on knowledge of their protein compositions. Using a spatially restricted enzymatic tagging strategy, we mapped the proteomes of two of the most common excitatory and inhibitory synaptic clefts in living neurons. These proteomes reveal dozens of synaptic candidates and assign numerous known synaptic proteins to a specific cleft type. The molecular differentiation of each cleft allowed us to identify Mdga2 as a potential specificity factor influencing Neuroligin-2's recruitment of presynaptic neurotransmitters at inhibitory synapses. PMID:27565350

  6. Compatibility between itinerant synaptic receptors and stable postsynaptic structure

    CERN Document Server

    Sekimoto, Ken

    2009-01-01

    The density of synaptic receptors in front of presynaptic release sites is stabilized in the presence of scaffold proteins, but the receptors and scaffold molecules have local exchanges with characteristic times shorter than that of the receptor-scaffold assembly. We propose a mesoscopic model to account for the regulation of the local density of receptors as quasiequilibrium. It is based on two zones (synaptic and extrasynaptic) and multi-layer (membrane, sub-membrane and cytoplasmic) topological organization. The model includes the balance of chemical potentials associated with the receptor and scaffold protein concentrations in the various compartments. The model shows highly cooperative behavior including a "phase change" resulting in the formation of well-defined post-synaptic domains. This study provides theoretical tools to approach the complex issue of synaptic stability at the synapse, where receptors are transiently trapped yet rapidly diffuse laterally on the plasma membrane.

  7. Ambient GABA modulates glutamatergic synapse in sacral dorsal commissural nucleus by presynaptic GABAB receptors%周边γ-氨基丁酸通过GABAB受体调控骶髓后联合核神经元谷氨酸能突触

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    马红雨; 林凯; 罗丹; 吕建晓; 杨鲲

    2011-01-01

    Aim To investigate the role of ambient γ-aminobutyric acid ( CABA ) on glutamatergic synapse via CABAB receptors in sacral dorsal commissural nucleus ( SDCN ). Method Using whole-cell voltageclamp recordings on acute spinal cord slice, effect of blockade of CABAB receptors on glutamatergic synaptic transmission was studied. Results Blockade of GABAB receptors by a selective antagonist CGP52432 increased evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents ( eEPSCs ) , decreased paired-pulse ration ( PPR ). switched " presynaptically" silent synapse to active one, indicating a presynaptic GABAB receptor-mediated modulation by ambient GABA. Conclusions Ambient GABA modulates glutamate release by GABAB receptors on presynaptic glutamatergic terminals to SDCN neurons;this action may contribute to nociception transmission at spinal cord level.%目的 研究突触周边γ-氨基丁酸(ambient GABA)通过GABAB受体调控骶髓后联合核(SDCN)神经元谷氨酸能突触的机制.方法 在急性切取的骶段脊髓薄片上,利用全细胞膜片钳法记录骶髓后联合核神经元谷氨酸能兴奋性突触后电流(EPSCs),将GABAB受体用其特异性受体拮抗剂CGP52432阻断,观察谷氨酸突触终末上的GABAB受体被周边GABA作用的影响.结果 在突触后GABAB受体被从胞内阻断的条件下,再灌流CGP52432阻断谷氨酸能突触前GABAB受体,可增加刺激引发的EPSCs (eEPSCs) 幅度; 改变配对刺激的两个EPSC比率 (paired-pulse ratio,PPR),并激发沉默突触 (silent synapse).但CGP52432对微小兴奋性突触后电流(mEPSCs)无影响.结论 位于SDCN神经元谷氨酸能突触前的GABAB受体受周边GABA调控.这种影响参与调节谷氨酸释放并可能参与痛觉信息在脊髓水平的传递.

  8. Synaptic adaptations by alcohol and drugs of abuse: changes in microRNA expression and mRNA regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dana eMost

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Local translation of mRNAs is a mechanism by which cells can rapidly remodel synaptic structure and function. There is ample evidence for a role of synaptic translation in the neuroadaptations resulting from chronic drug use and abuse. Persistent and coordinated changes of many mRNAs, globally and locally, may have a causal role in complex disorders such as addiction. In this review we examine the evidence that translational regulation by microRNAs drives synaptic remodeling and mRNA expression, which may regulate the transition from recreational to compulsive drug use.MicroRNAs are small, non-coding RNAs that control the translation of mRNAs in the cell and within spatially restricted sites such as the synapse. MicroRNAs typically repress the translation of mRNAs into protein by binding to the 3’UTR of their targets. As ‘master regulators’ of many mRNAs, changes in microRNAs could account for the systemic alterations in mRNA and protein expression observed with drug abuse and dependence. Recent studies indicate that manipulation of microRNAs affects addiction-related behaviors such as the rewarding properties of cocaine, cocaine-seeking behavior and self-administration rates of alcohol. There is limited evidence, however, regarding how synaptic microRNAs control local mRNA translation during chronic drug exposure and how this contributes to the development of dependence.Here, we discuss research supporting microRNA regulation of local mRNA translation and how drugs of abuse may target this process. The ability of synaptic microRNAs to rapidly regulate mRNAs provides a discrete, localized system that could potentially be used as diagnostic and treatment tools for alcohol and other addiction disorders.

  9. The interactive role of CB(1) and GABA(B) receptors in hippocampal synaptic plasticity in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nazari, Masoumeh; Komaki, Alireza; Karamian, Ruhollah; Shahidi, Siamak; Sarihi, Abdolrahman; Asadbegi, Masoumeh

    2016-01-01

    Long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic transmission is a cellular process underlying learning and memory. Cannabinoids are known to be powerful modulators of this kind of synaptic plasticity. Changes in GABAergic inhibition have also been shown to affect synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. GABA receptor type B (GABAB) and cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) exhibit overlapping anatomical localization in some brain areas including the hippocampus. CB1 and GABAB are also localized to the same cells and share a common signaling pathway in some brain areas. In this study, we examined the hippocampal effects of co-administrating AM251 and CGP55845, which are CB1 and GABAB antagonists, respectively, on LTP induction in the dentate gyrus (DG) of rats. LTP in the hippocampal area was induced by high-frequency stimulation (HFS) of the perforant path. Our results showed that HFS coupled with administration of the CB1 antagonist increased both the population spike (PS) amplitude and field excitatory post-synaptic potential (fEPSP). Conversely, the GABAB antagonist decreased these parameters along with decreased LTP induction. We also demonstrated that the co-administration of CB1 and GABAB antagonists had different effects on the PS amplitude and fEPSP slope. It is likely that GABAB receptor antagonists modulate cannabinoid outputs that cause a decrease in synaptic plastisity, while in the simultaneous consumption of two antagonists, CB1 antagonists can alter the release of GABA which in turn results in enhancement of LTP induction. These findings suggest that there are functional interactions between the CB1 and GABAB receptor in the hippocampus. PMID:26611204

  10. Voltage-Dependent Rhythmogenic Property of Respiratory Pre-Bötzinger Complex Glutamatergic, Dbx1-Derived, and Somatostatin-Expressing Neuron Populations Revealed by Graded Optogenetic Inhibition123

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koizumi, Hidehiko; Mosher, Bryan; Tariq, Mohammad F.; Zhang, Ruli

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The rhythm of breathing in mammals, originating within the brainstem pre-Bötzinger complex (pre-BötC), is presumed to be generated by glutamatergic neurons, but this has not been directly demonstrated. Additionally, developmental expression of the transcription factor Dbx1 or expression of the neuropeptide somatostatin (Sst), has been proposed as a marker for the rhythmogenic pre-BötC glutamatergic neurons, but it is unknown whether these other two phenotypically defined neuronal populations are functionally equivalent to glutamatergic neurons with regard to rhythm generation. To address these problems, we comparatively investigated, by optogenetic approaches, the roles of pre-BötC glutamatergic, Dbx1-derived, and Sst-expressing neurons in respiratory rhythm generation in neonatal transgenic mouse medullary slices in vitro and also more intact adult perfused brainstem-spinal cord preparations in situ. We established three different triple-transgenic mouse lines with Cre-driven Archaerhodopsin-3 (Arch) expression selectively in glutamatergic, Dbx1-derived, or Sst-expressing neurons for targeted photoinhibition. In each line, we identified subpopulations of rhythmically active, Arch-expressing pre-BötC inspiratory neurons by whole-cell recordings in medullary slice preparations in vitro, and established that Arch-mediated hyperpolarization of these inspiratory neurons was laser power dependent with equal efficacy. By site- and population-specific graded photoinhibition, we then demonstrated that inspiratory frequency was reduced by each population with the same neuronal voltage-dependent frequency control mechanism in each state of the respiratory network examined. We infer that enough of the rhythmogenic pre-BötC glutamatergic neurons also have the Dbx1 and Sst expression phenotypes, and thus all three phenotypes share the same voltage-dependent frequency control property. PMID:27275007

  11. Corticosteroid Regulation of Synaptic Plasticity in the Hippocampus

    OpenAIRE

    Nicola Maggio; Menahem Segal

    2010-01-01

    Stress, via release of steroid hormones, has been shown to affect several cellular functions in the brain, including synaptic receptors and ion channels. As such, corticosteroids were reported to modulate plasticity, expressed as long-term changes in reactivity to afferent stimulation. The classical view of the effects of stress on synaptic plasticity and cognitive functions assumes an inverted U-shape curve, such that a low stress level facilitates and a high stress level (i.e., corticostero...

  12. Activity-dependent modulation of neural circuit synaptic connectivity

    OpenAIRE

    Tessier, Charles R.; Kendal Broadie

    2009-01-01

    In many nervous systems, the establishment of neural circuits is known to proceed via a two-stage process; 1) early, activity-independent wiring to produce a rough map characterized by excessive synaptic connections, and 2) subsequent, use-dependent pruning to eliminate inappropriate connections and reinforce maintained synapses. In invertebrates, however, evidence of the activity-dependent phase of synaptic refinement has been elusive, and the dogma has long been that invertebrate circ...

  13. Synaptic Contacts Enhance Cell-to-Cell Tau Pathology Propagation

    OpenAIRE

    Sara Calafate; Arjan Buist; Katarzyna Miskiewicz; Vinoy Vijayan; Guy Daneels; Bart de Strooper; Joris de Wit; Patrik Verstreken; Diederik Moechars

    2015-01-01

    Accumulation of insoluble Tau protein aggregates and stereotypical propagation of Tau pathology through the brain are common hallmarks of tauopathies, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Propagation of Tau pathology appears to occur along connected neurons, but whether synaptic contacts between neurons are facilitating propagation has not been demonstrated. Using quantitative in vitro models, we demonstrate that, in parallel to non-synaptic mechanisms, synapses, but not merely the close dista...

  14. Synaptic plasticity in sleep: learning, homeostasis, and disease

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Gordon; Grone, Brian; Colas, Damien; Appelbaum, Lior; Mourrain, Philippe

    2011-01-01

    Sleep is a fundamental and evolutionarily conserved aspect of animal life. Recent studies have shed light on the role of sleep in synaptic plasticity. Demonstrations of memory replay and synapse homeostasis suggest that one essential role of sleep is in the consolidation and optimization of synaptic circuits to retain salient memory traces despite the noise of daily experience. Here, we review this recent evidence, and suggest that sleep creates a heightened state of plasticity, which may be ...

  15. Nonequivalent release sites govern synaptic depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Hua; McGinley, Matthew J; Mandel, Gail; Brehm, Paul

    2016-01-19

    Synaptic depression is prominent among synapses, but the underlying mechanisms remain uncertain. Here, we use paired patch clamp recording to study neuromuscular transmission between the caudal primary motor neuron and target skeletal muscle in zebrafish. This synapse has an unusually low number of release sites, all with high probabilities of release in response to low-frequency stimulation. During high-frequency stimulation, the synapse undergoes short-term depression and reaches steady-state levels of transmission that sustain the swimming behavior. To determine the release parameters underlying this steady state, we applied variance analysis. Our analysis revealed two functionally distinct subclasses of release sites differing by over 60-fold in rates of vesicle reloading. A slow reloading class requires seconds to recover and contributes to depression onset but not the steady-state transmission. By contrast, a fast reloading class recovers within tens of milliseconds and is solely responsible for steady-state transmission. Thus, in contrast to most current models that assign levels of steady-state depression to vesicle availability, our findings instead assign this function to nonuniform release site kinetics. The duality of active-site properties accounts for the highly nonlinear dependence of steady-state depression levels on frequency. PMID:26715759

  16. Neuroplastic alterations in the limbic system following cocaine or alcohol exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stuber, Garret D; Hopf, F Woodward; Tye, Kay M; Chen, Billy T; Bonci, Antonello

    2010-01-01

    Neuroplastic changes in the CNS are thought to be a fundamental component of learning and memory. While pioneering studies in the hippocampus and cerebellum have detailed many of the basic mechanisms that can lead to alterations in synaptic transmission based on previous activity, only more recently has synaptic plasticity been monitored after behavioral manipulation or drug exposure. In this chapter, we review evidence that drugs of abuse are powerful modulators of synaptic plasticity. Both the dopaminergic neurons of the ventral tegmental area as well medium spiny neurons in nucleus accumbens show enhanced excitatory synaptic strength following passive or active exposure to drugs such as cocaine and alcohol. In the VTA, both the enhancement of excitatory synaptic strength and the acquisition of drug-related behaviors depend on signaling through the N-methyl-D: -aspartate receptors (NMDARs) which are mechanistically thought to lead to increased synaptic insertion of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors (AMPARs). Synaptic insertion of AMPARs by drugs of abuse can be long lasting, depending on the route of administration, number of drug exposures, or whether the drugs are received passively or self-administered. PMID:21161748

  17. Imaging synaptic density in the living human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finnema, Sjoerd J; Nabulsi, Nabeel B; Eid, Tore; Detyniecki, Kamil; Lin, Shu-Fei; Chen, Ming-Kai; Dhaher, Roni; Matuskey, David; Baum, Evan; Holden, Daniel; Spencer, Dennis D; Mercier, Joël; Hannestad, Jonas; Huang, Yiyun; Carson, Richard E

    2016-07-20

    Chemical synapses are the predominant neuron-to-neuron contact in the central nervous system. Presynaptic boutons of neurons contain hundreds of vesicles filled with neurotransmitters, the diffusible signaling chemicals. Changes in the number of synapses are associated with numerous brain disorders, including Alzheimer's disease and epilepsy. However, all current approaches for measuring synaptic density in humans require brain tissue from autopsy or surgical resection. We report the use of the synaptic vesicle glycoprotein 2A (SV2A) radioligand [(11)C]UCB-J combined with positron emission tomography (PET) to quantify synaptic density in the living human brain. Validation studies in a baboon confirmed that SV2A is an alternative synaptic density marker to synaptophysin. First-in-human PET studies demonstrated that [(11)C]UCB-J had excellent imaging properties. Finally, we confirmed that PET imaging of SV2A was sensitive to synaptic loss in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy. Thus, [(11)C]UCB-J PET imaging is a promising approach for in vivo quantification of synaptic density with several potential applications in diagnosis and therapeutic monitoring of neurological and psychiatric disorders. PMID:27440727

  18. Cerebellar Synaptic Plasticity and the Credit Assignment Problem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jörntell, Henrik

    2016-04-01

    The mechanism by which a learnt synaptic weight change can contribute to learning or adaptation of brain function is a type of credit assignment problem, which is a key issue for many parts of the brain. In the cerebellum, detailed knowledge not only of the local circuitry connectivity but also of the topography of different sources of afferent/external information makes this problem particularly tractable. In addition, multiple forms of synaptic plasticity and their general rules of induction have been identified. In this review, we will discuss the possible roles of synaptic and cellular plasticity at specific locations in contributing to behavioral changes. Focus will be on the parts of the cerebellum that are devoted to limb control, which constitute a large proportion of the cortex and where the knowledge of the external connectivity is particularly well known. From this perspective, a number of sites of synaptic plasticity appear to primarily have the function of balancing the overall level of activity in the cerebellar circuitry, whereas the locations at which synaptic plasticity leads to functional changes in terms of limb control are more limited. Specifically, the postsynaptic forms of long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) at the parallel fiber synapses made on interneurons and Purkinje cells, respectively, are the types of plasticity that mediate the widest associative capacity and the tightest link between the synaptic change and the external functions that are to be controlled. PMID:25417189

  19. Drosophila larval to pupal switch under nutrient stress requires IP3R/Ca2+ signalling in glutamatergic interneurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayakumar, Siddharth; Richhariya, Shlesha; Reddy, O Venkateswara; Texada, Michael J; Hasan, Gaiti

    2016-01-01

    Neuronal circuits are known to integrate nutritional information, but the identity of the circuit components is not completely understood. Amino acids are a class of nutrients that are vital for the growth and function of an organism. Here, we report a neuronal circuit that allows Drosophila larvae to overcome amino acid deprivation and pupariate. We find that nutrient stress is sensed by the class IV multidendritic cholinergic neurons. Through live calcium imaging experiments, we show that these cholinergic stimuli are conveyed to glutamatergic neurons in the ventral ganglion through mAChR. We further show that IP3R-dependent calcium transients in the glutamatergic neurons convey this signal to downstream medial neurosecretory cells (mNSCs). The circuit ultimately converges at the ring gland and regulates expression of ecdysteroid biosynthetic genes. Activity in this circuit is thus likely to be an adaptation that provides a layer of regulation to help surpass nutritional stress during development. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.17495.001 PMID:27494275

  20. σ2-Adaptin Facilitates Basal Synaptic Transmission and Is Required for Regenerating Endo-Exo Cycling Pool Under High-Frequency Nerve Stimulation in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choudhury, Saumitra Dey; Mushtaq, Zeeshan; Reddy-Alla, Suneel; Balakrishnan, Sruthi S; Thakur, Rajan S; Krishnan, Kozhalmannom S; Raghu, Padinjat; Ramaswami, Mani; Kumar, Vimlesh

    2016-05-01

    The functional requirement of adapter protein 2 (AP2) complex in synaptic membrane retrieval by clathrin-mediated endocytosis is not fully understood. Here we isolated and functionally characterized a mutation that dramatically altered synaptic development. Based on the aberrant neuromuscular junction (NMJ) synapse, we named this mutation angur (a Hindi word meaning "grapes"). Loss-of-function alleles of angur show more than twofold overgrowth in bouton numbers and a dramatic decrease in bouton size. We mapped the angur mutation to σ2-adaptin, the smallest subunit of the AP2 complex. Reducing the neuronal level of any of the subunits of the AP2 complex or disrupting AP2 complex assembly in neurons phenocopied the σ2-adaptin mutation. Genetic perturbation of σ2-adaptin in neurons leads to a reversible temperature-sensitive paralysis at 38°. Electrophysiological analysis of the mutants revealed reduced evoked junction potentials and quantal content. Interestingly, high-frequency nerve stimulation caused prolonged synaptic fatigue at the NMJs. The synaptic levels of subunits of the AP2 complex and clathrin, but not other endocytic proteins, were reduced in the mutants. Moreover, bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)/transforming growth factor β (TGFβ) signaling was altered in these mutants and was restored by normalizing σ2-adaptin in neurons. Thus, our data suggest that (1) while σ2-adaptin facilitates synaptic vesicle (SV) recycling for basal synaptic transmission, its activity is also required for regenerating SVs during high-frequency nerve stimulation, and (2) σ2-adaptin regulates NMJ morphology by attenuating TGFβ signaling. PMID:26920756

  1. SS31, a Small Molecule Antioxidant Peptide, Attenuates β-Amyloid Elevation, Mitochondrial/Synaptic Deterioration and Cognitive Deficit in SAMP8 Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Yan-Li; Sun, Su-Juan; Chen, Jing-Hong; Jia, Qian; Huo, Tian-Tian; Chu, Li-Fang; Bai, Jiang-Tao; Yu, Ye-Jing; Yan, Xiao-Xin; Wang, Jian-Hua

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress and β -amyloid (Aβ) formation are thought to cause neuronal and synaptic degeneration underlying cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease (AD). The senescence-accelerated mouse-prone 8 (SAMP8) mice have been used as an animal model for mechanistic and translational research for AD. In the present study we characterized mitochondrial and synaptic alterations in SAMP8 mice relative to SAMR1control mice and explored a protective effect of the small molecule peptide SS31, a cell membrane penetrant antioxidant, on mitochondrial and synaptic protein integrity as well as cognitive performance. Electron microscopic analysis revealed mitochondrial/synaptic deterioration in 10 months-old SAMP8 relative to SAMR1 mice, with the changes in the former rescued following 8 weeks treatment with SS31 (5 mg/kg/day, i.p.). Elevation of Aβ42, mitochondrial fission protein (DLP1, Fis1) and matrix protein cyclophilin D (CypD), and reductions of mitochondrial fusion protein (Mfn2) and synaptic (i.e. synaptophysin, postsynaptic density protein 95 and growth associated protein 43) proteins, were detected in hippocampal lysates in SAMP8 mice relative to SAMR1. The above altered protein expressions in the SAMP8 mouse brain were restored with the SS31 treatment. Moreover, the SS31 treatment rescued learning and memory deficits detected in 10 month-old SAMP8 mice. Together, the findings suggest that this mitochondria-targeting antioxidant peptide may be of potential utility for AD therapy, with its pharmacological efficacy involves lowering of central Aβ levels and protection of mitochondrial homeostasis and synaptic integrity, which may help slow down cognitive decline. PMID:26679857

  2. Age-related deficits in synaptic plasticity rescued by activating PKA or PKC in sensory neurons of Aplysia californica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew T Kempsell

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Brain aging is associated with declines in synaptic function that contribute to memory loss, including reduced postsynaptic response to neurotransmitters and decreased neuronal excitability. To understand how aging affects memory in a simple neural circuit, we studied neuronal proxies of memory for sensitization in mature versus advanced age Aplysia. Glutamate- (L-Glu- evoked excitatory currents were facilitated by the neuromodulator serotonin (5-HT in sensory neurons (SN isolated from mature but not aged animals. Activation of PKA and PKC signaling rescued facilitation of L-Glu currents in aged SN. Similarly, PKA and PKC activators restored increased excitability in aged tail SN. These results suggest that altered synaptic plasticity during aging involves defects in second messenger systems

  3. Smectite alteration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report contains the proceedings of a second workshop in Washington DC December 8-9, 1983 on the alteration of smectites intended for use as buffer materials in the long-term containment of nuclear wastes. It includes extended summaries of all presentations and a transcript of the detailed scientific discussion. The discussions centered on three main questions: What is the prerequisite for and what is the precise mechanism by which smectite clays may be altered to illite. What are likly sources of potassium with respect to the KBS project. Is it likely that the conversion of smectite to illite will be of importance in the 10 5 to the 10 6 year time frame. The workshop was convened to review considerations and conclusions in connection to these questions and also to broaden the discussion to consider the use of smectite clays as buffer materials for similar applications in different geographical and geological settings. SKBF/KBS technical report 83-03 contains the proceedings from the first workshop on these matters that was held at the State University of New York, Buffalo May 26-27, 1982. (Author)

  4. Maternal dietary loads of alpha-tocopherol increase synapse density and glial synaptic coverage in the hippocampus of adult offspring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Salucci

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available An increased intake of the antioxidant α-Tocopherol (vitamin E is recommended in complicated pregnancies, to prevent free radical damage to mother and fetus. However, the anti-PKC and antimitotic activity of α-Tocopherol raises concerns about its potential effects on brain development. Recently, we found that maternal dietary loads of α-Tocopherol through pregnancy and lactation cause developmental deficit in hippocampal synaptic plasticity in rat offspring. The defect persisted into adulthood, with behavioral alterations in hippocampus-dependent learning. Here, using the same rat model of maternal supplementation, ultrastructural morphometric studies were carried out to provide mechanistic interpretation to such a functional impairment in adult offspring by the occurrence of long-term changes in density and morphological features of hippocampal synapses. Higher density of axo-spinous synapses was found in CA1 stratum radiatum of α-Tocopherol-exposed rats compared to controls, pointing to a reduced synapse pruning. No morphometric changes were found in synaptic ultrastructural features, i.e., perimeter of axon terminals, length of synaptic specializations, extension of bouton-spine contact. Glia-synapse anatomical relationship was also affected. Heavier astrocytic coverage of synapses was observed in Tocopherol-treated offspring, notably surrounding axon terminals; moreover, the percentage of synapses contacted by astrocytic endfeet at bouton-spine interface (tripartite synapses was increased. These findings indicate that gestational and neonatal exposure to supranutritional tocopherol intake can result in anatomical changes of offspring hippocampus that last through adulthood. These include a surplus of axo-spinous synapses and an aberrant glia-synapse relationship, which may represent the morphological signature of previously described alterations in synaptic plasticity and hippocampus-dependent learning.

  5. Maternal Dietary Loads of Alpha-Tocopherol Increase Synapse Density and Glial Synaptic Coverage in the Hippocampus of Adult Offspring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salucci, S.; Ambrogini, P.; Lattanzi, D.; Betti, M.; Gobbi, P.; Galati, C.; Galli, F.; Cuppini, R.; Minelli, A.

    2014-01-01

    An increased intake of the antioxidant α-Tocopherol (vitamin E) is recommended in complicated pregnancies, to prevent free radical damage to mother and fetus. However, the anti-PKC and antimitotic activity of α-Tocopherol raises concerns about its potential effects on brain development. Recently, we found that maternal dietary loads of α-Tocopherol through pregnancy and lactation cause developmental deficit in hippocampal synaptic plasticity in rat offspring. The defect persisted into adulthood, with behavioral alterations in hippocampus-dependent learning. Here, using the same rat model of maternal supplementation, ultrastructural morphometric studies were carried out to provide mechanistic interpretation to such a functional impairment in adult offspring by the occurrence of long-term changes in density and morphological features of hippocampal synapses. Higher density of axo-spinous synapses was found in CA1 stratum radiatum of α-Tocopherol-exposed rats compared to controls, pointing to a reduced synapse pruning. No morphometric changes were found in synaptic ultrastructural features, i.e., perimeter of axon terminals, length of synaptic specializations, extension of bouton-spine contact. Gliasynapse anatomical relationship was also affected. Heavier astrocytic coverage of synapses was observed in Tocopherol-treated offspring, notably surrounding axon terminals; moreover, the percentage of synapses contacted by astrocytic endfeet at bouton-spine interface (tripartite synapses) was increased. These findings indicate that gestational and neonatal exposure to supranutritional Tocopherol intake can result in anatomical changes of offspring hippocampus that last through adulthood. These include a surplus of axo-spinous synapses and an aberrant gliasynapse relationship, which may represent the morphological signature of previously described alterations in synaptic plasticity and hippocampus-dependent learning. PMID:24998923

  6. Exosomes secreted by cortical neurons upon glutamatergic synapse activation specifically interact with neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathilde Chivet

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Exosomes are nano-sized vesicles of endocytic origin released into the extracellular space upon fusion of multivesicular bodies with the plasma membrane. Exosomes represent a novel mechanism of cell–cell communication allowing direct transfer of proteins, lipids and RNAs. In the nervous system, both glial and neuronal cells secrete exosomes in a way regulated by glutamate. It has been hypothesized that exosomes can be used for interneuronal communication implying that neuronal exosomes should bind to other neurons with some kind of specificity. Here, dissociated hippocampal cells were used to compare the specificity of binding of exosomes secreted by neuroblastoma cells to that of exosomes secreted by cortical neurons. We found that exosomes from neuroblastoma cells bind indiscriminately to neurons and glial cells and could be endocytosed preferentially by glial cells. In contrast, exosomes secreted from stimulated cortical neurons bound to and were endocytosed only by neurons. Thus, our results demonstrate for the first time that exosomes released upon synaptic activation do not bind to glial cells but selectively to other neurons suggesting that they can underlie a novel aspect of interneuronal communication.

  7. Identification of Synaptic Targets of Drosophila Pumilio

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regulski, Michael; Sinha, Nishi; Barditch, Jody; Tully, Tim; Krainer, Adrian R.; Zhang, Michael Q.; Dubnau, Josh

    2008-01-01

    Drosophila Pumilio (Pum) protein is a translational regulator involved in embryonic patterning and germline development. Recent findings demonstrate that Pum also plays an important role in the nervous system, both at the neuromuscular junction (NMJ) and in long-term memory formation. In neurons, Pum appears to play a role in homeostatic control of excitability via down regulation of para, a voltage gated sodium channel, and may more generally modulate local protein synthesis in neurons via translational repression of eIF-4E. Aside from these, the biologically relevant targets of Pum in the nervous system remain largely unknown. We hypothesized that Pum might play a role in regulating the local translation underlying synapse-specific modifications during memory formation. To identify relevant translational targets, we used an informatics approach to predict Pum targets among mRNAs whose products have synaptic localization. We then used both in vitro binding and two in vivo assays to functionally confirm the fidelity of this informatics screening method. We find that Pum strongly and specifically binds to RNA sequences in the 3′UTR of four of the predicted target genes, demonstrating the validity of our method. We then demonstrate that one of these predicted target sequences, in the 3′UTR of discs large (dlg1), the Drosophila PSD95 ortholog, can functionally substitute for a canonical NRE (Nanos response element) in vivo in a heterologous functional assay. Finally, we show that the endogenous dlg1 mRNA can be regulated by Pumilio in a neuronal context, the adult mushroom bodies (MB), which is an anatomical site of memory storage. PMID:18463699

  8. Synaptic transmission changes in fear memory circuits underlie key features of an animal model of schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollard, Marie; Varin, Christophe; Hrupka, Brian; Pemberton, Darrel J; Steckler, Thomas; Shaban, Hamdy

    2012-02-01

    Non-competitive antagonists of the N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDA) such as phencyclidine (PCP) elicit schizophrenia-like symptoms in healthy individuals. Similarly, PCP dosing in rats produces typical behavioral phenotypes that mimic human schizophrenia symptoms. Although schizophrenic behavioral phenotypes of the PCP model have been extensively studied, the underlying alterations of intrinsic neuronal properties and synaptic transmission in relevant limbic brain microcircuits remain elusive. Acute brain slice electrophysiology and immunostaining of inhibitory neurons were used to identify neuronal circuit alterations of the amygdala and hippocampus associated with changes in extinction of fear learning in rats following PCP treatment. Subchronic PCP application led to impaired long-term potentiation (LTP) and marked increases in the ratio of NMDA to 2-amino-3(5-methyl-3-oxo-1,2-oxazol-4-yl)propionic acid (AMPA) receptor-mediated currents at lateral amygdala (LA) principal neurons without alterations in parvalbumin (PV) as well as non-PV, glutamic acid decarboxylase 67 (GAD 67) immunopositive neurons. In addition, LTP was impaired at the Schaffer collateral to CA1 hippocampal pathway coincident with a reduction in colocalized PV and GAD67 immunopositive neurons in the CA3 hippocampal area. These effects occurred without changes in spontaneous events or intrinsic membrane properties of principal cells in the LA. The impairment of LTP at both amygdalar and hippocampal microcircuits, which play a key role in processing relevant survival information such as fear and extinction memory concurred with a disruption of extinction learning of fear conditioned responses. Our results show that subchronic PCP administration in rats impairs synaptic functioning in the amygdala and hippocampus as well as processing of fear-related memories. PMID:22085880

  9. Molecular evidence of synaptic pathology in the CA1 region in schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matosin, Natalie; Fernandez-Enright, Francesca; Lum, Jeremy S; Engel, Martin; Andrews, Jessica L; Gassen, Nils C; Wagner, Klaus V; Schmidt, Mathias V; Newell, Kelly A

    2016-01-01

    Alterations of postsynaptic density (PSD)95-complex proteins in schizophrenia ostensibly induce deficits in synaptic plasticity, the molecular process underlying cognitive functions. Although some PSD95-complex proteins have been previously examined in the hippocampus in schizophrenia, the status of other equally important molecules is unclear. This is especially true in the cornu ammonis (CA)1 hippocampal subfield, a region that is critically involved in the pathophysiology of the illness. We thus performed a quantitative immunoblot experiment to examine PSD95 and several of its associated proteins in the CA1 region, using post mortem brain samples derived from schizophrenia subjects with age-, sex-, and post mortem interval-matched controls (n=20/group). Our results indicate a substantial reduction in PSD95 protein expression (−61.8%). Further analysis showed additional alterations to the scaffold protein Homer1 (Homer1a: +42.9%, Homer1b/c: −24.6%), with a twofold reduction in the ratio of Homer1b/c:Homer1a isoforms (P=0.011). Metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 (mGluR1) protein levels were significantly reduced (−32.7%), and Preso, a protein that supports interactions between Homer1 or PSD95 with mGluR1, was elevated (+83.3%). Significant reduction in synaptophysin (−27.8%) was also detected, which is a validated marker of synaptic density. These findings support the presence of extensive molecular abnormalities to PSD95 and several of its associated proteins in the CA1 region in schizophrenia, offering a small but significant step toward understanding how proteins in the PSD are altered in the schizophrenia brain, and their relevance to overall hippocampal and cognitive dysfunction in the illness. PMID:27430010

  10. Synaptic plasticity in medial vestibular nucleus neurons: comparison with computational requirements of VOR adaptation.

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    John R W Menzies

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR gain adaptation, a longstanding experimental model of cerebellar learning, utilizes sites of plasticity in both cerebellar cortex and brainstem. However, the mechanisms by which the activity of cortical Purkinje cells may guide synaptic plasticity in brainstem vestibular neurons are unclear. Theoretical analyses indicate that vestibular plasticity should depend upon the correlation between Purkinje cell and vestibular afferent inputs, so that, in gain-down learning for example, increased cortical activity should induce long-term depression (LTD at vestibular synapses. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we expressed this correlational learning rule in its simplest form, as an anti-Hebbian, heterosynaptic spike-timing dependent plasticity interaction between excitatory (vestibular and inhibitory (floccular inputs converging on medial vestibular nucleus (MVN neurons (input-spike-timing dependent plasticity, iSTDP. To test this rule, we stimulated vestibular afferents to evoke EPSCs in rat MVN neurons in vitro. Control EPSC recordings were followed by an induction protocol where membrane hyperpolarizing pulses, mimicking IPSPs evoked by flocculus inputs, were paired with single vestibular nerve stimuli. A robust LTD developed at vestibular synapses when the afferent EPSPs coincided with membrane hyperpolarization, while EPSPs occurring before or after the simulated IPSPs induced no lasting change. Furthermore, the iSTDP rule also successfully predicted the effects of a complex protocol using EPSP trains designed to mimic classical conditioning. CONCLUSIONS: These results, in strong support of theoretical predictions, suggest that the cerebellum alters the strength of vestibular synapses on MVN neurons through hetero-synaptic, anti-Hebbian iSTDP. Since the iSTDP rule does not depend on post-synaptic firing, it suggests a possible mechanism for VOR adaptation without compromising gaze-holding and VOR

  11. Concurrent imaging of synaptic vesicle recycling and calcium dynamics.

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    Haiyan eLi

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Synaptic transmission involves the calcium-dependent release of neurotransmitter from synaptic vesicles. Genetically encoded optical probes emitting different wavelengths of fluorescent light in response to neuronal activity offer a powerful approach to understand the spatial and temporal relationship of calcium dynamics to the release of neurotransmitter in defined neuronal populations. To simultaneously image synaptic vesicle recycling and changes in cytosolic calcium, we developed a red-shifted reporter of vesicle recycling based on a vesicular glutamate transporter, VGLUT1-mOrange2 (VGLUT1-mOr2, and a presynaptically-localized green calcium indicator, synaptophysin-GCaMP3 (SyGCaMP3 with a large dynamic range. The fluorescence of VGLUT1-mOr2 is quenched by the low pH of synaptic vesicles. Exocytosis upon electrical stimulation exposes the luminal mOr2 to the neutral extracellular pH and relieves fluorescence quenching. Re-acidification of the vesicle upon endocytosis again reduces fluorescence intensity. Changes in fluorescence intensity thus monitor synaptic vesicle exo- and endocytosis, as demonstrated previously for the green VGLUT1-pHluorin. To monitor changes in calcium, we fused the synaptic vesicle protein synaptophysin to the recently improved calcium indicator GCaMP3. SyGCaMP3 is targeted to presynaptic varicosities, and exhibits changes in fluorescence in response to electrical stimulation consistent with changes in calcium concentration. Using real-time imaging of both reporters expressed in the same synapses, we determine the time course of changes in VGLUT1 recycling in relation to changes in presynaptic calcium concentration. Inhibition of P/Q- and N-type calcium channels reduces calcium levels, as well as the rate of synaptic vesicle exocytosis and the fraction of vesicles released.

  12. Concurrent Imaging of Synaptic Vesicle Recycling and Calcium Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Haiyan; Foss, Sarah M.; Dobryy, Yuriy L.; Park, C. Kevin; Hires, Samuel Andrew; Shaner, Nathan C.; Tsien, Roger Y.; Osborne, Leslie C.; Voglmaier, Susan M.

    2011-01-01

    Synaptic transmission involves the calcium dependent release of neurotransmitter from synaptic vesicles. Genetically encoded optical probes emitting different wavelengths of fluorescent light in response to neuronal activity offer a powerful approach to understand the spatial and temporal relationship of calcium dynamics to the release of neurotransmitter in defined neuronal populations. To simultaneously image synaptic vesicle recycling and changes in cytosolic calcium, we developed a red-shifted reporter of vesicle recycling based on a vesicular glutamate transporter, VGLUT1-mOrange2 (VGLUT1-mOr2), and a presynaptically localized green calcium indicator, synaptophysin-GCaMP3 (SyGCaMP3) with a large dynamic range. The fluorescence of VGLUT1-mOr2 is quenched by the low pH of synaptic vesicles. Exocytosis upon electrical stimulation exposes the luminal mOr2 to the neutral extracellular pH and relieves fluorescence quenching. Reacidification of the vesicle upon endocytosis again reduces fluorescence intensity. Changes in fluorescence intensity thus monitor synaptic vesicle exo- and endocytosis, as demonstrated previously for the green VGLUT1-pHluorin. To monitor changes in calcium, we fused the synaptic vesicle protein synaptophysin to the recently improved calcium indicator GCaMP3. SyGCaMP3 is targeted to presynaptic varicosities, and exhibits changes in fluorescence in response to electrical stimulation consistent with changes in calcium concentration. Using real time imaging of both reporters expressed in the same synapses, we determine the time course of changes in VGLUT1 recycling in relation to changes in presynaptic calcium concentration. Inhibition of P/Q- and N-type calcium channels reduces calcium levels, as well as the rate of synaptic vesicle exocytosis and the fraction of vesicles released. PMID:22065946

  13. Riluzole attenuates the effects of chemoconvulsants acting on glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission in the planarian Dugesia tigrina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramakrishnan, Latha; Dalhoff, Zachary; Fettig, Samantha L; Eggerichs, Michael R; Nelson, Briegette E; Shrestha, Bibita; Elshikh, Amira H; Karki, Pratima

    2013-10-15

    Planarians, the non-parasitic flatworms, display dose-dependent, distinct (C-like and corkscrew-like) hyperkinesias upon exposure to 0.001-10 mM aqueous solutions of glutamatergic agonists (L-glutamate and N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)) and 0.001-5 mM concentrations of the glutamate decarboxylase (GAD) inhibitor (semicarbazide). In the planarian seizure-like activity (PSLA) experiments the three chemoconvulsants displayed the following order of potency (EC50): L-glutamate (0.6mM)>NMDA (1.4 mM)>semicarbazide (4.5mM). Planarian hyperkinesias behavior counting experiments also revealed that riluzole (0.001 to 1mM), an anti-convulsive agent, displayed no significant behavioral activity by itself, but attenuated hyperkinesias elicited by the three chemoconvulsants targeting either glutamatergic or GABAergic neurotransmission with the following order of potency (IC50): NMDA (44.7 µM)>semicarbazide (88.3 µM)>L-glutamate (160 µM). Further, (+)-MK-801, a specific NMDA antagonist, alleviated 3mM NMDA (47%) or 3mM L-glutamate (27%) induced planarian hyperkinesias. The results provide pharmacological evidence for the presence of glutamatergic receptor-like and semicarbazide sensitive functional GAD enzyme-like proteins in planaria in addition to demonstrating, for the first time, the anti-convulsive effects of riluzole in an invertebrate model. High performance liquid chromatography coupled with fluorescence detection (HPLC-F) analysis performed on planarian extracts post no drug treatment (control) or treatment with 3mM semicarbazide, combination of 3mM semicarbazide and 0.1 mM riluzole, or 0.1 mM riluzole revealed that 3 mM semicarbazide induced 35% decrease in the GABA levels and a combination of 3mM semicarbazide and 0.1 mM riluzole induced 42% decrease in glutamate levels with respect to the control group. PMID:23872399

  14. Non-Invasive Evaluation of the GABAergic/Glutamatergic System in Autistic Patients Observed by MEGA-Editing Proton MR Spectroscopy Using a Clinical 3 Tesla Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harada, Masafumi; Taki, Masako M.; Nose, Ayumi; Kubo, Hitoshi; Mori, Kenji; Nishitani, Hiromu; Matsuda, Tsuyoshi

    2011-01-01

    Amino acids related to neurotransmitters and the GABAergic/glutamatergic system were measured using a 3 T-MRI instrument in 12 patients with autism and 10 normal controls. All measurements were performed in the frontal lobe (FL) and lenticular nuclei (LN) using a conventional sequence for n-acetyl aspartate (NAA) and glutamate (Glu), and the…

  15. The Impact of Neuroimmune Alterations in Autism Spectrum Disorder

    OpenAIRE

    Gottfried, Carmem; Bambini-Junior, Victorio; Francis, Fiona; Riesgo, Rudimar; Savino, Wilson

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) involves a complex interplay of both genetic and environmental risk factors, with immune alterations and synaptic connection deficiency in early life. In the past decade, studies of ASD have substantially increased, in both humans and animal models. Immunological imbalance (including autoimmunity) has been proposed as a major etiological component in ASD, taking into account increased levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines observed in postmortem brain from patient...

  16. Synaptic Remodeling Generates Synchronous Oscillations in the Degenerated Outer Mouse Retina

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    Wadood eHaq

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available During neuronal degenerative diseases, neuronal microcircuits undergo severe structural alterations, leading to remodeling of synaptic connectivity. The functional consequences of such remodeling are mostly unknown. For instance, in mutant rd1 mouse retina, a common model for Retinitis Pigmentosa, rod bipolar cells (RBCs establish contacts with remnant cone photoreceptors (cones as a consequence of rod photoreceptor cell death and the resulting lack of presynaptic input. To assess the functional connectivity in the remodeled, light-insensitive outer rd1 retina, we recorded spontaneous population activity in retinal wholemounts using Ca2+ imaging and identified the participating cell types. Focusing on cones, RBCs and horizontal cells (HCs, we found that these cell types display spontaneous oscillatory activity and form synchronously active clusters. Overall activity was modulated by GABAergic inhibition from HCs. Many of the activity clusters comprised both cones and RBCs. Opposite to what is expected from the intact (wild-type cone-ON bipolar cell pathway, cone and RBC activity was positively correlated and, at least partially, mediated by glutamate transporters expressed on RBCs. Deletion of gap junctional coupling between cones reduced the number of clusters, indicating that electrical cone coupling plays a crucial role for generating the observed synchronized oscillations. In conclusion, degeneration-induced synaptic remodeling of the rd1 retina results in a complex self-sustained outer retinal oscillatory network, that complements (and potentially modulates the recently described inner retinal oscillatory network consisting of amacrine, bipolar and ganglion cells.

  17. UNRAVELING THE ARCHITECTURE OF THE DORSAL RAPHE SYNAPTIC NEUROPIL USING HIGH-RESOLUTION NEUROANATOMY

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    Mariano eSoiza-Reilly

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN, representing the main source of brain’s serotonin, is implicated in the pathophysiology and therapeutics of several mental disorders that can be debilitating and life-long including depression, anxiety and autism. The activity of DRN neurons is precisely regulated, both phasically and tonically, by excitatory glutamate and inhibitory GABAergic axons arising from extra-raphe areas as well as from local sources within the nucleus. Changes in serotonin neurotransmission associated with pathophysiology may be encoded by alterations within this network of regulatory afferents. However, the complex organization of the DRN circuitry remains still poorly understood. Using a recently developed high-resolution immunofluorescence technique called array tomography we quantitatively analyzed the relative contribution of different populations of glutamate axons originating from different brain regions to the excitatory drive of the DRN. Additionally, we examined the presence of GABA axons within the DRN and their possible association with glutamate axons. In this review, we summarize our findings on the architecture of the rodent DRN synaptic neuropil using high-resolution neuroanatomy, and discuss possible functional implications for the nucleus. Understanding of the synaptic architecture of neural circuits at high resolution will pave the way to understand how neural structure and function may be perturbed in pathological states.

  18. Remodeling of inhibitory synaptic connections in developing ferret visual cortex

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    Dalva Matthew B

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the visual cortex, as in many other regions of the developing brain, excitatory synaptic connections undergo substantial remodeling during development. While evidence suggests that local inhibitory synapses may behave similarly, the extent and mechanisms that mediate remodeling of inhibitory connections are not well understood. Results Using scanning laser photostimulation in slices of developing ferret visual cortex, we assessed the overall patterns of developing inhibitory and excitatory synaptic connections converging onto individual neurons. Inhibitory synaptic inputs onto pyramidal neurons in cortical layers 2 and 3 were already present as early as postnatal day 20, well before eye opening, and originated from regions close to the recorded neurons. During the ensuing 2 weeks, the numbers of synaptic inputs increased, with the numbers of inhibitory (and excitatory synaptic inputs peaking near the time of eye opening. The pattern of inhibitory inputs refined rapidly prior to the refinement of excitatory inputs. By uncaging the neurotransmtter GABA in brain slices from animals of different ages, we find that this rapid refinement correlated with a loss of excitatory activity by GABA. Conclusion Inhibitory synapses, like excitatory synapses, undergo significant postnatal remodeling. The time course of the remodeling of inhibitory connections correlates with the emergence of orientation tuning in the visual cortex, implicating these rearrangements in the genesis of adult cortical response properties.

  19. Synaptic membrane rafts: traffic lights for local neurotrophin signalling?

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    Liliana Minichiello

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Lipid rafts, cholesterol and lipid rich microdomains, are believed to play important roles as platforms for the partitioning of transmembrane and synaptic proteins involved in synaptic signalling, plasticity and maintenance. There is increasing evidence of a physical interaction between post-synaptic densities and post-synaptic lipid rafts. Localization of proteins within lipid rafts is highly regulated, and therefore lipid rafts may function as traffic lights modulating and fine-tuning neuronal signalling. The tyrosine kinase neurotrophin receptors (Trk and the low-affinity p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75NTR are enriched in neuronal lipid rafts together with the intermediates of downstream signalling pathways, suggesting a possible role of rafts in neurotrophin signalling. Moreover, neurotrophins and their receptors are involved in the regulation of cholesterol metabolism. Cholesterol is an important component of lipid rafts and its depletion leads to gradual loss of synapses, underscoring the importance of lipid rafts for proper neuronal function. Here, we review and discuss the idea that translocation of neurotrophin receptors in synaptic rafts may account for the selectivity of their transduced signals.

  20. Synaptic Mechanisms of Blast-Induced Brain Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Przekwas, Andrzej; Somayaji, Mahadevabharath R; Gupta, Raj K

    2016-01-01

    Blast wave-induced traumatic brain injury (TBI) is one of the most common injuries to military personnel. Brain tissue compression/tension due to blast-induced cranial deformations and shear waves due to head rotation may generate diffuse micro-damage to neuro-axonal structures and trigger a cascade of neurobiological events culminating in cognitive and neurodegenerative disorders. Although diffuse axonal injury is regarded as a signature wound of mild TBI (mTBI), blast loads may also cause synaptic injury wherein neuronal synapses are stretched and sheared. This synaptic injury may result in temporary disconnect of the neural circuitry and transient loss in neuronal communication. We hypothesize that mTBI symptoms such as loss of consciousness or dizziness, which start immediately after the insult, could be attributed to synaptic injury. Although empirical evidence is beginning to emerge; the detailed mechanisms underlying synaptic injury are still elusive. Coordinated in vitro-in vivo experiments and mathematical modeling studies can shed light into the synaptic injury mechanisms and their role in the potentiation of mTBI symptoms. PMID:26834697

  1. A New Fiji-Based Algorithm That Systematically Quantifies Nine Synaptic Parameters Provides Insights into Drosophila NMJ Morphometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nijhof, Bonnie; Castells-Nobau, Anna; Wolf, Louis; Scheffer-de Gooyert, Jolanda M; Monedero, Ignacio; Torroja, Laura; Coromina, Lluis; van der Laak, Jeroen A W M; Schenck, Annette

    2016-03-01

    The morphology of synapses is of central interest in neuroscience because of the intimate relation with synaptic efficacy. Two decades of gene manipulation studies in different animal models have revealed a repertoire of molecules that contribute to synapse development. However, since such studies often assessed only one, or at best a few, morphological features at a given synapse, it remained unaddressed how different structural aspects relate to one another. Furthermore, such focused and sometimes only qualitative approaches likely left many of the more subtle players unnoticed. Here, we present the image analysis algorithm 'Drosophila_NMJ_Morphometrics', available as a Fiji-compatible macro, for quantitative, accurate and objective synapse morphometry of the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ), a well-established glutamatergic model synapse. We developed this methodology for semi-automated multiparametric analyses of NMJ terminals immunolabeled for the commonly used markers Dlg1 and Brp and showed that it also works for Hrp, Csp and Syt. We demonstrate that gender, genetic background and identity of abdominal body segment consistently and significantly contribute to variability in our data, suggesting that controlling for these parameters is important to minimize variability in quantitative analyses. Correlation and principal component analyses (PCA) were performed to investigate which morphometric parameters are inter-dependent and which ones are regulated rather independently. Based on nine acquired parameters, we identified five morphometric groups: NMJ size, geometry, muscle size, number of NMJ islands and number of active zones. Based on our finding that the parameters of the first two principal components hardly correlated with each other, we suggest that different molecular processes underlie these two morphometric groups. Our study sets the stage for systems morphometry approaches at the well-studied Drosophila NMJ. PMID:26998933

  2. Modification of hippocampal markers of synaptic plasticity by memantine in animal models of acute and repeated restraint stress: implications for memory and behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amin, Shaimaa Nasr; El-Aidi, Ahmed Amro; Ali, Mohamed Mostafa; Attia, Yasser Mahmoud; Rashed, Laila Ahmed

    2015-06-01

    Stress is any condition that impairs the balance of the organism physiologically or psychologically. The response to stress involves several neurohormonal consequences. Glutamate is the primary excitatory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, and its release is increased by stress that predisposes to excitotoxicity in the brain. Memantine is an uncompetitive N-methyl D-aspartate glutamatergic receptors antagonist and has shown beneficial effect on cognitive function especially in Alzheimer's disease. The aim of the work was to investigate memantine effect on memory and behavior in animal models of acute and repeated restraint stress with the evaluation of serum markers of stress and the expression of hippocampal markers of synaptic plasticity. Forty-two male rats were divided into seven groups (six rats/group): control, acute restraint stress, acute restraint stress with Memantine, repeated restraint stress, repeated restraint stress with Memantine and Memantine groups (two subgroups as positive control). Spatial working memory and behavior were assessed by performance in Y-maze. We evaluated serum cortisol, tumor necrotic factor, interleukin-6 and hippocampal expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, synaptophysin and calcium-/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II. Our results revealed that Memantine improved spatial working memory in repeated stress, decreased serum level of stress markers and modified the hippocampal synaptic plasticity markers in both patterns of stress exposure; in ARS, Memantine upregulated the expression of synaptophysin and brain-derived neurotrophic factor and downregulated the expression of calcium-/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II, and in repeated restraint stress, it upregulated the expression of synaptophysin and downregulated calcium-/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II expression. PMID:25680935

  3. Storage capacity diverges with synaptic efficiency in an associative memory model with synaptic delay and pruning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyoshi, Seiji; Okada, Masato

    2004-09-01

    It is known that storage capacity per synapse increases by synaptic pruning in the case of a correlation-type associative memory model. However, the storage capacity of the entire network then decreases. To overcome this difficulty, we propose decreasing the connectivity while keeping the total number of synapses constant by introducing delayed synapses. In this paper, a discrete synchronous-type model with both delayed synapses and their prunings is discussed as a concrete example of the proposal. First, we explain the Yanai-Kim theory by employing statistical neurodynamics. This theory involves macrodynamical equations for the dynamics of a network with serial delay elements. Next, considering the translational symmetry of the explained equations, we rederive macroscopic steady-state equations of the model by using the discrete Fourier transformation. The storage capacities are analyzed quantitatively. Furthermore, two types of synaptic prunings are treated analytically: random pruning and systematic pruning. As a result, it becomes clear that in both prunings, the storage capacity increases as the length of delay increases and the connectivity of the synapses decreases when the total number of synapses is constant. Moreover, an interesting fact becomes clear: the storage capacity asymptotically approaches 2/pi due to random pruning. In contrast, the storage capacity diverges in proportion to the logarithm of the length of delay by systematic pruning and the proportion constant is 4/pi. These results theoretically support the significance of pruning following an overgrowth of synapses in the brain and may suggest that the brain prefers to store dynamic attractors such as sequences and limit cycles rather than equilibrium states. PMID:15484896

  4. A mathematical model of the tripartite synapse: astrocyte-induced synaptic plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Tewari, Shivendra G.; Majumdar, Kaushik Kumar

    2012-01-01

    In this paper, we present a biologically detailed mathematical model of tripartite synapses, where astrocytes modulate short-term synaptic plasticity. The model consists of a pre-synaptic bouton, a post-synaptic dendritic spine-head, a synaptic cleft and a peri-synaptic astrocyte controlling Ca2 +  dynamics inside the synaptic bouton. This in turn controls glutamate release dynamics in the cleft. As a consequence of this, glutamate concentration in the cleft has been modeled, in which glutama...

  5. Evidence for a modulatory effect of sulbutiamine on glutamatergic and dopaminergic cortical transmissions in the rat brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trovero, F; Gobbi, M; Weil-Fuggaza, J; Besson, M J; Brochet, D; Pirot, S

    2000-09-29

    Chronic treatment of rats by sulbutiamine induced no change in density of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and (+/-)-alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid receptors in the cingular cortex, but a significant decrease of the kainate binding sites, as measured by quantitative autoradiography. In the same treated animals, an increase of D1 dopaminergic (DA) binding sites was measured both in the prefrontal and the cingular cortex, while no modification of the D2 binding sites was detected. Furthermore, an acute sulbutiamine administration induced a decrease of kainate binding sites but no change of the density of D1 and D2 DA receptors. Acute sulbutiamine injection led to a decrease of the DA levels in the prefrontal cortex and 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid levels in both the cingular and the prefrontal cortex. These observations are discussed in terms of a modulatory effect of sulbutiamine on both dopaminergic and glutamatergic cortical transmissions. PMID:10996447

  6. Sleep loss alters synaptic and intrinsic neuronal properties in mouse prefrontal cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Winters, Bradley D.; Huang, Yanhua H.; Dong, Yan; Krueger, James M.

    2011-01-01

    Despite sleep-loss-induced cognitive deficits, little is known about the cellular adaptations that occur with sleep loss. We used brain slices obtained from mice that were sleep deprived for 8 h to examine the electrophysiological effects of sleep deprivation (SD). We employed a modified pedestal (flowerpot) over water method for SD that eliminated rapid eye movement sleep and greatly reduced non-rapid eye movement sleep. In layer V/VI pyramidal cells of the medial prefrontal cortex, miniatur...

  7. Mitochondrial dynamics and bioenergetic dysfunction is associated with synaptic alterations in mutant SOD1 motor neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Magrané, Jordi; Sahawneh, Mary Anne; Przedborski, Serge; Estévez, Álvaro G.; Manfredi, Giovanni

    2012-01-01

    Mutations in Cu,Zn superoxide dismutase (SOD1) cause familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (FALS), a rapidly fatal motor neuron disease. Mutant SOD1 has pleiotropic toxic effects on motor neurons, among which mitochondrial dysfunction has been proposed as one of the contributing factors in motor neuron demise. Mitochondria are highly dynamic in neurons; they are constantly reshaped by fusion and move along neurites to localize at sites of high-energy utilization, such as synapses. The findin...

  8. Developmental exposure to perchlorate alters synaptic transmission in hippocampus of the adult rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Food Quality Protection Act and Safe Drinking Water Act mandate the EPA to identify potential health risks associated with chemicals that act on the endocrine system. Perchlorate, a contaminant found in food and water supplies throughout the USA, blocks iodine uptake into the...

  9. Developmental exposure to perchlorate alters synaptic transmission in hippocampus of the adult rat: in vivo studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perchlorate, a contaminant found in food and water supplies throughout the USA, blocks iodine uptake into the thyroid gland to reduce circulating levels of thyroid hormone. Neurological function accompanying developmental exposure to perchlorate was evaluated in the present study...

  10. Nicotine exposure during adolescence alters the rules for prefrontal cortical synaptic plasticity during adulthood

    OpenAIRE

    Huib eMansvelder; Natalia eGoriounova

    2012-01-01

    The majority of adolescents report to have smoked a cigarette at least once. Adolescence is a critical period of brain development during which maturation of areas involved in cognitive functioning, such as the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), is still ongoing. Tobacco smoking during this age may compromise the normal course of prefrontal development and lead to cognitive impairments in later life. In addition, adolescent smokers suffer from attention deficits, which progress with the years o...

  11. Eugenol reduces acute pain in mice by modulating the glutamatergic and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dal Bó, Wladmir; Luiz, Ana Paula; Martins, Daniel F; Mazzardo-Martins, Leidiane; Santos, Adair R S

    2013-10-01

    Eugenol is utilized together with zinc oxide in odontological clinical for the cementation of temporary prostheses and the temporary restoration of teeth and cavities. This work explored the antinociceptive effects of the eugenol in different models of acute pain in mice and investigated its possible modulation of the inhibitory (opioid) and excitatory (glutamatergic and pro-inflammatory cytokines) pathways of nociceptive signaling. The administration of eugenol (3-300 mg/kg, p.o., 60 min or i.p., 30 min) inhibited 82 ± 10% and 90 ± 6% of the acetic acid-induced nociception, with ID₅₀ values of 51.3 and 50.2 mg/kg, respectively. In the glutamate test, eugenol (0.3-100 mg/kg, i.p.) reduced the response behavior by 62 ± 5% with an ID₅₀ of 5.6 mg/kg. In addition, the antinociceptive effect of eugenol (10 mg/kg, i.p.) in the glutamate test was prevented by the i.p. treatment for mice with naloxone. The pretreatment of mice with eugenol (10 mg/kg, i.p.) was able to inhibit the nociception induced by the intrathecal (i.t.) injection of glutamate (37 ± 9%), kainic (acid kainite) (41 ± 12%), α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) (55 ± 5%), and substance P (SP) (39 ± 8%). Furthermore, eugenol (10 mg/kg, i.p.) also inhibited biting induced by tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α, 65 ± 8%). These results extend our current knowledge of eugenol and confirm that it promotes significant antinociception against different mouse models of acute pain. The mechanism of action appears to involve the modulation of the opioid system and glutamatergic receptors (i.e., kainate and AMPA), and the inhibition of TNF-α. Thus, eugenol could represent an important compound in the treatment for acute pain. PMID:22775297

  12. Involvement of 5-HT3 receptors in the action of vortioxetine in rat brain: Focus on glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riga, Maurizio S; Sánchez, Connie; Celada, Pau; Artigas, Francesc

    2016-09-01

    The antidepressant vortioxetine is a 5-HT3-R, 5-HT7-R and 5-HT1D-R antagonist, 5-HT1B-R partial agonist, 5-HT1A-R agonist, and serotonin (5-HT) transporter (SERT) inhibitor. Vortioxetine occupies all targets at high therapeutic doses and only SERT and 5-HT3-R at low doses. Vortioxetine increases extracellular monoamine concentrations in rat forebrain more than selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) and shows pro-cognitive activity in preclinical models. Given its high affinity for 5-HT3-R (Ki = 3.7 nM), selectively expressed in GABA interneurons, we hypothesized that vortioxetine may disinhibit glutamatergic and monoaminergic neurotransmission following 5-HT3-R blockade. Here we assessed vortioxetine effect on pyramidal neuron activity and extracellular 5-HT concentration using in vivo extracellular recordings of rat medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) pyramidal neurons and microdialysis in mPFC and ventral hippocampus (vHPC). Vortioxetine, but not escitalopram, increased pyramidal neuron discharge in mPFC. This effect was prevented by SR57227A (5-HT3-R agonist) and was mimicked by ondansetron (5-HT3-R antagonist) and by escitalopram/ondansetron combinations. In microdialysis experiments, ondansetron augmented the 5-HT-enhancing effect of escitalopram in mPFC and vHPC. Local ondansetron in vHPC augmented escitalopram effect, indicating the participation of intrinsic mechanisms. Since 5-HT neurons express GABAB receptors, we examined their putative involvement in controlling 5-HT release after 5-HT3-R blockade. Co-perfusion of baclofen (but not muscimol) reversed the increased 5-HT levels produced by vortioxetine and escitalopram/ondansetron combinations in vHPC. The present results suggest that vortioxetine increases glutamatergic and serotonergic neurotransmission in rat forebrain by blocking 5-HT3 receptors in GABA interneurons. PMID:27106166

  13. Mixed electrical-chemical synapses in adult rat hippocampus are primarily glutamatergic and coupled by connexin-36

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    Farid Hamzei-Sichani

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Dendrodendritic electrical signaling via gap junctions is now an accepted feature of neuronal communication in the mammalian brain, whereas axodendritic and axosomatic gap junctions have rarely been described. We present ultrastructural, immunocytochemical, and dye-coupling evidence for “mixed” (electrical/chemical synapses in adult rat hippocampus on both principal cells and interneurons. Thin-section electron microscopic images of small gap junction-like appositions were found at mossy fiber (MF terminals on thorny excrescences of CA3 pyramidal neurons (CA3pyr, apparently forming glutamatergic mixed synapses. Lucifer Yellow injected into four weakly-fixed CA3pyr was detected in MF axons that contacted the injected CA3pyr, supporting gap junction-mediated coupling between those two types of principal cells. Freeze-fracture replica immunogold-labeling revealed diverse sizes and morphologies of connexin36-containing gap junctions throughout hippocampus. Of 20 immunogold-labeled gap junctions, seven were large (328-1140 connexons, three of which were consistent with electrical synapses between interneurons; but nine were at axon terminal synapses, three of which were immediately adjacent to distinctive glutamate receptor-containing postsynaptic densities, forming mixed glutamatergic synapses. Four others were adjacent to small clusters of immunogold-labeled 10-nm E-face intramembrane particles, apparently representing extrasynaptic glutamate receptor particles. Gap junctions also were on spines in stratum lucidum, stratum oriens, dentate gyrus, and hilus, on both interneurons and unidentified neurons. In addition, one putative GABAergic mixed synapse was found in thin section images of a CA3pyr, but none found by immunogold-labeling were at GABAergic mixed synapses, suggesting their rarity. Cx36-containing gap junctions throughout hippocampus suggest the possibility of reciprocal modulation of electrical and chemical signals in diverse

  14. Regulation of the ERK pathway in the dentate gyrus by in vivo dopamine D1 receptor stimulation requires glutamatergic transmission.

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    Gangarossa, Giuseppe; Valjent, Emmanuel

    2012-11-01

    Acute systemic administration of the dopamine D1/D5 receptors (D1Rs) agonist, SKF81297, activates the extracellular signal-regulated protein kinases (ERK) pathway selectively in the granule cells of the dentate gyrus. In this study, we examined the mechanisms involved in this regulation and investigated the molecular components that could promote ERK-dependent transcription and translation. SKF81297 induced phosphorylation of ERK and histone H3 required intact glutamatergic transmission. Blockade of glutamate release achieved by the mGluR2/3 agonist, LY354740 or the selective adenosine A1R agonist, CCPA as well as neurotoxic lesions of lateral entorhinal cortex reduced the ability of SKF81297 to induce ERK activation in the dentate gyrus. This activation required the combined stimulation of NR2B-containing NMDARs, mGluR1 and mGluR5. SKF81297 evoked phosphorylation of the ribosomal protein S6 (rpS6) selectively at the Ser235/236 site while the Ser240/244 site remains unchanged. The SKF81297 induced increased phosphorylation of rpS6 was dependent on PKC and ERK/p90RSK activation. Surprisingly, administration of D1Rs agonist suppressed mTORC1/p70S6K pathway suggesting an mTOR-independent regulation of rpS6 phosphorylation. Taken together, our results show that intact glutamatergic transmission plays a major role in the regulation of ERK-dependent phosphorylation of histone H3 and rpS6 observed in the mouse dentate gyrus after systemic administration of SKF81297. PMID:22796106

  15. Opposite control of frontocortical 2-arachidonoylglycerol turnover rate by cannabinoid type-1 receptors located on glutamatergic neurons and on astrocytes.

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    Belluomo, Ilaria; Matias, Isabelle; Pernègre, Camille; Marsicano, Giovanni; Chaouloff, Francis

    2015-04-01

    This study examined the respective influences of cannabinoid type-1 (CB1) receptors expressed either in forebrain GABAergic neurons, in cortical glutamatergic neurons, or in astrocytes on the turnover rates of the endocannabinoids N-arachidonoylethanolamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), and the non-cannabinoid N-acylethanolamides, palmitoylethanolamide (PEA), and oleoylethanolamide (OEA), in mouse forebrain regions. To this end, conditional mutant mice lacking CB1 receptors from either of these cell types were pre-treated systemically with JZL195, a dual inhibitor of fatty acid amide hydrolase, the enzyme degrading AEA, PEA, and OEA, and of monoacylglycerol lipase, the main 2-AG-degrading enzyme. The analyses of frontocortical, hippocampal, and striatal AEA, 2-AG, PEA, and OEA concentrations revealed that their respective baseline concentrations were not influenced by the mouse genotype. On the other hand, the accumulation of frontocortical and/or hippocampal 2-AG levels in JZL195-pre-treated mice was dependent on the mouse genotype. Thus, JZL195-induced 2-AG accumulation rates were diminished in the frontal cortex of mice lacking CB1 receptors in glutamatergic neurons while their respective values were increased in the frontal cortex and hippocampus of mice lacking these receptors in astrocytes. These genotypic differences occurred with parallel and proportionate changes in the fractional rate constants for degradation of 2-AG, thus providing a mechanism whereby the baseline levels of 2-AG remained constant between genotypes. Besides suggesting a cell-type-specific control of frontocortical and/or hippocampal 2-AG synthesis and degradation rates by CB1 receptors, this study highlights the interest of assessing endocannabinoid turnover rates when questioning the status of the endocannabinoid system. PMID:25626460

  16. Ascorbic acid inhibits development of tolerance and dependence to opiates in mice: Possible glutamatergic or dopaminergic modulation

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    Kulkarni S

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available In a recent study, it has been demonstrated that ascorbic acid possessed antidopaminergic activity and modulate the glutamatergic neurotransmission in mice. With this background, the present study was undertaken to study the effect of ascorbic acid on the development of tolerance and dependence to opiate and its mechanism of action. Male Swiss mice weighing 20-25 g were used in the present stu