A Critical Role for Myosin IIB in Dendritic Spine Morphology and Synaptic Function
ABSTRACT Dendritic spines show rapid motility and plastic morphology, which may mediate information storage in the brain. It is presently believed that polymerization/depolymerization of actin is the primary determinant of spine motility and morphogenesis. Here, we show that myosin IIB, a molecular motor that binds and contracts actin filaments, is essential for normal spine morphology and dynamics and represents a distinct biophysical pathway to control spine size and shape. Myosin IIB is enriched in the postsynaptic density (PSD) of neurons. Pharmacologic or genetic inhibition of myosin IIB alters protrusive motility of spines, destabilizes their classical mushroom-head morphology, and impairs excitatory synaptic transmission. Thus, the structure and function of spines is regulated by an actin-based motor in addition to the polymerization state of actin.
Full-textDOI: · Available from: Richard Weinberg, Jan 07, 2014
- SourceAvailable from: Zong-Peng Sun
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ABSTRACT: Dendritic spines are small protrusions that receive synaptic signals in neuronal networks. The actin cytoskeleton plays a key role in regulating spine morphogenesis, as well as in the function of synapses. Here we report the first quantitative measurement of F-actin retrograde flow rate in dendritic filopodia, the precursor of dendritic spines, and in newly formed spines, using a technique based on photoactivation localization microscopy. We found a fast F-actin retrograde flow in the dendritic filopodia but not in the spine necks. The quantification of F-actin flow rates, combined with fluorescence recovery after photobleaching measurements, allowed for a full quantification of spatially resolved kinetic rates of actin turnover, which was not previously feasible. Furthermore we provide evidences that myosin II regulates the actin flow in dendritic filopodia and translocates from the base to the tip of the protrusion upon spine formation. Rac1 inhibition led to mislocalization of myosin II, as well as to disruption of the F-actin flow. These results provide advances in the quantitative understanding of F-actin remodeling during spine formation.Molecular biology of the cell 06/2012; 23(16):3167-77. DOI:10.1091/mbc.E12-02-0165 · 5.98 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Learning induces dynamic changes to the actin cytoskeleton that are required to support memory formation. However, the molecular mechanisms that mediate filamentous actin (F-actin) dynamics during learning and memory are poorly understood. Myosin II motors are highly expressed in actin-rich growth structures including dendritic spines, and we have recently shown that these molecular machines mobilize F-actin in response to synaptic stimulation and learning in the hippocampus. In this study, we report that Myosin II motors in the rat lateral amygdala (LA) are essential for fear memory formation. Pretraining infusions of the Myosin II inhibitor, blebbistatin (blebb), disrupted long term memory, while short term memory was unaffected. Interestingly, both post-training and pretesting infusions had no effect on memory formation, indicating that Myosin II motors operate during or shortly after learning to promote memory consolidation. These data support the idea that Myosin II motor-force generation is a general mechanism that supports memory consolidation in the mammalian CNS.Learning & memory (Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y.) 01/2012; 19(1):9-14. DOI:10.1101/lm.024042.111 · 4.38 Impact Factor