Article

Importin-mediated nuclear transport in neurons.

University of California, Los Angeles, Gonda Research Building 3506C, 695 Charles Young Drive South, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1761, USA.
Current Opinion in Neurobiology (Impact Factor: 6.77). 07/2006; 16(3):329-35. DOI: 10.1016/j.conb.2006.05.001
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The polarized morphology of neurons poses a particular challenge to intracellular signal transduction. Local signals generated at distal sites must be retrogradely transported to the nucleus to produce persistent changes in neuronal function. Such communication of signals between distal neuronal compartments and the nucleus occurs during axon guidance, synapse formation, synaptic plasticity and following neuronal injury. Recent studies have begun to delineate a role for the active nuclear import pathway in transporting signals from axons and dendrites to the nucleus. In this pathway, soluble cargo proteins are recognized by nuclear transport carriers, called importins, which mediate their translocation from the cytoplasm into the nucleus. In neurons, importins might serve an additional function by carrying signals from distal sites to the soma.

Download full-text

Full-text

Available from: Kelsey C Martin, Jun 20, 2015
0 Followers
 · 
106 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The communication between synapses and the cell nucleus has attracted considerable interest for many years. This interest is largely fueled by the idea that synapse-to-nucleus signaling might specifically induce the expression of genes that make long-term memory "stick." However, despite many years of research, it is still essentially unclear how synaptic signals are conveyed to the nucleus, and it remains to a large degree enigmatic how activity-induced gene expression feeds back to synaptic function. In this chapter, we will focus on the activity-dependent synapto-nuclear trafficking of protein messengers and discuss the underlying mechanisms of their retrograde transport and their supposed functional role in neuronal plasticity.
    Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology 01/2012; 970:355-76. DOI:10.1007/978-3-7091-0932-8_16 · 2.01 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The tachykinin NK3 receptor (NK3R) is a G-protein coupled receptor that is activated, internalized, and trafficked to the nuclei of magnocellular neurons in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) in response to acute hyperosmolarity. The lack of information on the nuclear import pathway raises concerns about the physiological role of nuclear NK3R. NK3R contains a nuclear localizing sequence (NLS) and this raises the possibility that importins are involved in transport of NK3R through the nuclear pore complex. The following experiments utilized: (1) co-immunoprecipitation to determine if NK3R is associated with importin ß-1 following activation in response to acute hyperosmolarity in vivo, and (2) immuno-neutralization of importin ß-1 in vitro to determine if nuclear transport of NK3R was blocked. Rats were given an i.v. injection of hypertonic saline (2 M) and 10 min after the infusion, the PVN was removed and homogenized. Importin ß-1 co-immunoprecipitated with the NK3R following treatment with 2 M NaCl, but not following isotonic saline treatment. Immuno-neutralization of importin ß-1 decreased the transport of NK3R into the nuclei in a time dependent fashion. The results indicate that in response to acute hyperosmotic challenge, NK3R associates with importin ß-1 which enables the nuclear transport of NK3R. This is the first in vivo study linking importin ß-1 and the nuclear transport of a G protein coupled receptor, the NK3R, in brain.
    Neuroscience 11/2010; 170(4):1020-7. DOI:10.1016/j.neuroscience.2010.08.015 · 3.33 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Molluscan preparations have yielded seminal discoveries in neuroscience, but the experimental advantages of this group have not, until now, been complemented by adequate molecular or genomic information for comparisons to genetically defined model organisms in other phyla. The recent sequencing of the transcriptome and genome of Aplysia californica, however, will enable extensive comparative studies at the molecular level. Among other benefits, this will bring the power of individually identifiable and manipulable neurons to bear upon questions of cellular function for evolutionarily conserved genes associated with clinically important neural dysfunction. Because of the slower rate of gene evolution in this molluscan lineage, more homologs of genes associated with human disease are present in Aplysia than in leading model organisms from Arthropoda (Drosophila) or Nematoda (Caenorhabditis elegans). Research has hardly begun in molluscs on the cellular functions of gene products that in humans are associated with neurological diseases. On the other hand, much is known about molecular and cellular mechanisms of long-term neuronal plasticity. Persistent nociceptive sensitization of nociceptors in Aplysia displays many functional similarities to alterations in mammalian nociceptors associated with the clinical problem of chronic pain. Moreover, in Aplysia and mammals the same cell signaling pathways trigger persistent enhancement of excitability and synaptic transmission following noxious stimulation, and these highly conserved pathways are also used to induce memory traces in neural circuits of diverse species. This functional and molecular overlap in distantly related lineages and neuronal types supports the proposal that fundamental plasticity mechanisms important for memory, chronic pain, and other lasting alterations evolved from adaptive responses to peripheral injury in the earliest neurons. Molluscan preparations should become increasingly useful for comparative studies across phyla that can provide insight into cellular functions of clinically important genes.
    Brain Behavior and Evolution 01/2009; 74(3):206-18. DOI:10.1159/000258667 · 4.29 Impact Factor