Zinc Potentiates GluK3 Glutamate Receptor Function by Stabilizing the Ligand Binding Domain Dimer Interface.
ABSTRACT Kainate receptors (KARs) play a key role in the regulation of synaptic networks. Here, we show that zinc, a cation released at a subset of glutamatergic synapses, potentiates glutamate currents mediated by homomeric and heteromeric KARs containing GluK3 at 10-100 μM concentrations, whereas it inhibits other KAR subtypes. Potentiation of GluK3 currents is mainly due to reduced desensitization, as shown by kinetic analysis and desensitization mutants. Crystallographic and mutation analyses revealed that a specific zinc binding site is formed at the base of the ligand binding domain (LBD) dimer interface by a GluK3-specific aspartate (Asp759), together with two conserved residues, His762 and Asp730, the latter located on the partner subunit. In addition, we propose that tetrameric GluK2/GluK3 receptors are likely assembled as pairs of heterodimeric LBDs. Therefore, zinc binding stabilizes the labile GluK3 dimer interface, slows desensitization, and potentiates currents, providing a mechanism for KAR potentiation at glutamatergic synapses.
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ABSTRACT: Ionotropic glutamate receptors (iGluRs) are ligand-gated ion channels that open their ion-conducting pores in response to the binding of agonist glutamate. In recent years, significant progress has been achieved in studies of iGluRs by obtaining numerous structures of isolated water soluble ligand binding and amino terminal domains as well as the first full length crystal structure of GluA2 in the closed, antagonist-bound state. This structural data combined with electrophysiological and fluorescence recordings, biochemical experiments, mutagenesis and molecular dynamics simulations have greatly improved our understanding of iGluR assembly, activation and desensitization processes. This article reviews the recent structural and functional advances in iGluR field and summarizes them in a simplified model of full length iGluR gating.The Journal of Physiology 10/2013; 593(1). DOI:10.1113/jphysiol.2013.264911 · 4.54 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The physiology and pathology of mobile zinc signaling has become an important topic in metalloneurochemistry. To study the action of mobile zinc effectively, specialized tools are required that probe the temporal and positional changes of zinc ions within live tissue and cells. In the present article we describe the design and implementation of selective zinc chelators as antagonists to interrogate the function of mobile zinc, with an emphasis on the pools of vesicular zinc in the terminals of hippocampal mossy fiber buttons.Current opinion in chemical biology 03/2013; 17(2). DOI:10.1016/j.cbpa.2013.01.009 · 7.65 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Although it is well established that many glutamatergic neurons sequester Zn(2+) within their synaptic vesicles, the physiological significance of synaptic Zn(2+) remains poorly understood. In experiments performed in a Zn(2+)-enriched auditory brainstem nucleus-the dorsal cochlear nucleus-we discovered that synaptic Zn(2+) and GPR39, a putative metabotropic Zn(2+)-sensing receptor (mZnR), are necessary for triggering the synthesis of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). The postsynaptic production of 2-AG, in turn, inhibits presynaptic probability of neurotransmitter release, thus shaping synaptic strength and short-term synaptic plasticity. Zn(2+)-induced inhibition of transmitter release is absent in mutant mice that lack either vesicular Zn(2+) or the mZnR. Moreover, mass spectrometry measurements of 2-AG levels reveal that Zn(2+)-mediated initiation of 2-AG synthesis is absent in mice lacking the mZnR. We reveal a previously unknown action of synaptic Zn(2+): synaptic Zn(2+) inhibits glutamate release by promoting 2-AG synthesis.The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 05/2013; 33(22):9259-9272. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0237-13.2013 · 6.75 Impact Factor