Mitogen-activated protein kinase upregulates the dendritic translation machinery in long-term potentiation by controlling the mammalian target of rapamycin pathway
ABSTRACT Protein synthesis is required for persistent forms of synaptic plasticity, including long-term potentiation (LTP). A key regulator of LTP-related protein synthesis is mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), which is thought to modulate translational capacity by facilitating the synthesis of particular components of the protein synthesis machinery. Recently, extracellularly regulated kinase (ERK) also was shown to mediate plasticity-related translation, an effect that may involve regulation of the mTOR pathway. We studied the interaction between the mTOR and ERK pathways in hippocampal LTP induced at CA3-CA1 synapses by high-frequency synaptic stimulation (HFS). Within minutes after HFS, the expression of multiple translational proteins, the synthesis of which is under the control of mTOR, increased in area CA1 stratum radiatum. This upregulation was detected in pyramidal cell dendrites and was blocked by inhibitors of the ERK pathway. In addition, ERK mediated the stimulation of mTOR by HFS. The possibility that ERK regulates mTOR by acting at a component further upstream in the phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)-mTOR pathway was tested by probing the phosphorylation of p90-S6 kinase, phosphoinositide-dependent kinase 1 (PDK1), and Akt. ERK inhibitors blocked HFS-induced phosphorylation of all three proteins at sites implicated in the regulation of mTOR. Moreover, a component of basal and HFS-induced ERK activity depended on PI3K, indicating that mTOR-mediated protein synthesis in LTP requires coincident and mutually dependent activity in the PI3K and ERK pathways. The role of ERK in regulating PDK1 and Akt, with their extensive effects on cellular function, has important implications for the coordinated response of the neuron to LTP-inducing stimulation.
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ABSTRACT: The purpose of this review is to summarize the present knowledge on the interplay among the cholinergic system, Extracellular signal-Regulated Kinase (ERK) and Mammalian Target of Rapamycin (mTOR) pathways in the development of short and long term memories during the acquisition and recall of the step-down inhibitory avoidance in the hippocampus. The step-down inhibitory avoidance is a form of associative learning that is acquired in a relatively simple one-trial test through several sensorial inputs. Inhibitory avoidance depends on the integrated activity of hippocampal CA1 and other brain areas. Recall can be performed at different times after acquisition, thus allowing for the study of both short and long term memory. Among the many neurotransmitter systems involved, the cholinergic neurons that originate in the basal forebrain and project to the hippocampus are of crucial importance in inhibitory avoidance processes. Acetylcholine released from cholinergic fibers during acquisition and/or recall of behavioural tasks activates muscarinic and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and brings about a long-lasting potentiation of the postsynaptic membrane followed by downstream activation of intracellular pathway (ERK, among others) that create conditions favourable for neuronal plasticity. ERK appears to be salient not only in long term memory, but also in the molecular mechanisms underlying short term memory formation in the hippocampus. Since ERK can function as a biochemical coincidence detector in response to extracellular signals in neurons, the activation of ERK-dependent downstream effectors is determined, in part, by the duration of ERK phosphorylation itself. Long term memories require protein synthesis, that in the synapto-dendritic compartment represents a direct mechanism that can produce rapid changes in protein content in response to synaptic activity. mTOR in the brain regulates protein translation in response to neuronal activity, thereby modulating synaptic plasticity and long term memory formation. Some studies demonstrate a complex interplay among the cholinergic system, ERK and mTOR. It has been shown that co-activation of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors and β-adrenergic receptors facilitates the conversion of short term to long term synaptic plasticity through an ERK- and mTOR-dependent mechanism which requires translation initiation. It seems therefore that the complex interplay among the cholinergic system, ERK and mTOR is crucial in the development of new inhibitory avoidance memories in the hippocampus.Neurobiology of Learning and Memory 01/2015; 119. DOI:10.1016/j.nlm.2014.12.014 · 4.04 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Adolescence is increasingly recognized as a critical period for the development of the social system, through the maturation of social competences and of their underlying neural circuitries. The present study sought to test the utility of resveratrol, a dietary phenol recently reported to have mood lifting properties, in modulating social interaction that is deficient following early life adversity. The main aims were to 1) pharmacologically restore normative social investigation levels dampened by peripubertal stress in rats and 2) identify neural pathways engaged by this pharmacological approach. Following peripubertal (P28-42) stress consisting of unpredictable exposures to fearful experiences, at adulthood the subjects’ propensity for social exploration was examined in the three-chamber apparatus, comparing time invested in social or non-social investigation. Administered intraperitoneally thirty minutes before testing, resveratrol (20 mg/kg) normalized the peripubertal stress-induced social investigation deficit seen in the vehicle group, selectively altering juvenile but not object exploration. Examination of prefrontal cortex subregion protein samples following acute resveratrol treatment in a separate cohort revealed that while monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) enzymatic activity remained unaltered, nuclear AKT activation was selectively increased in the infralimbic cortex, but not in the prelimbic or anterior cingulate cortex. In contrast, androgen receptor nuclear localization was increased in the prelimbic cortex, but not in the infralimbic or anterior cingulate cortex. This demonstration that social contact deficits are reversed by resveratrol administration emphasizes a prosocial role for this dietary phenol, and evokes the possibility of developing new treatments for social dysfunctions.Journal of Psychiatric Research 06/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.jpsychires.2014.05.017 · 4.09 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR1/5) play a role in synaptic plasticity and they demonstrate direct interactions with the neuronal Homer1c protein. We have previously shown that Homer1c can restore the plasticity deficits in Homer1 knockout mice (H1-KO). Here, we investigated the role of Homer1c in mGluR-dependent synaptic plasticity in wild type mice, H1-KO, and H1-KO mice overexpressing Homer1c (KO+H1c). We used a form of plasticity induced by activation of mGluR1/5 that transforms short term potentiaion (STP) induced by a sub-threshold theta burst stimulation into long-term potentiation (LTP). We have shown that while acute hippocampal slices from wild type animals can induce LTP using this stimulation protocol, H1-KO only show STP. Gene delivery of Homer1c into the hippocampus of H1-KO mice rescued LTP to wild type levels. This form of synaptic plasticity was dependent on mGluR5 but not mGluR1 activation both in wild type mice and KO+H1c. mGluR1/5-dependent LTP was blocked with inhibitors of the MEK-ERK and PI3K-mTOR pathways in KO+H1c mice. Moreover, blocking Homer1c-mGluR5 interactions prevented maintenance of LTP in acute hippocampal slices from KO+H1c. These data indicate that Homer1c-mGluR5 interactions are necessary for mGluR-dependent LTP, and that mGluR1/5-dependent LTP involves PI3K and ERK activation. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.Hippocampus 01/2014; 24(1). DOI:10.1002/hipo.22222 · 4.30 Impact Factor