[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: 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.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hyperammonemia is a major pathophysiological factor in encephalopathies associated with acute and chronic liver failure. On mouse brain slice preparations we analyzed the effects of ammonium on the characteristics of corticostriatal long-term potentiation (LTP) induced by high-frequency electrical stimulation (HFS) of cortical input and the long-lasting effects of pharmacological NMDA receptor (NMDAR) activation. Ammonium chloride exposure enhanced the expression of HFS-induced LTP at the expense of LTD and promoted the generation of NMDA-induced Ltd. This treatment did not affect two NMDAR-independent forms of plasticity: taurine-induced LTP and histamine-induced Ltd. Alterations in NMDA-induced plasticity were prevented by treatment with green tea polyphenols suggesting the contribution of oxidative stress to the expression of abnormal corticostriatal plasticity.
Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics 02/2013; DOI:10.1016/j.abb.2013.02.002 · 3.04 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hyperammonemia is a major pathophysiological factor in encephalopathies associated with acute and chronic liver failure. On mouse brain slice preparations, we analyzed the effects of ammonia on the characteristics of corticostriatal long-term depression (LTD) induced by electrical stimulation of cortical input or pharmacological activation of metabotropic glutamate receptors. Long exposure of neostriatal slices to ammonium chloride impaired the induction and/or expression of all studied forms of LTD. This impairment was reversed by the phosphodiesterase inhibitor zaprinast implying lowered cGMP signaling in LTD suppression. Polyphenols from green tea rescued short-term corticostriatal plasticity, but failed to prevent the ammonia-induced deficit of LTD. Zaprinast counteracts the ammonia-induced impairment of long-term corticostriatal plasticity and may thus improve fine motor skills and procedural learning in hepatic encephalopathy.
Journal of Neurochemistry 05/2012; 122(3):545-56. DOI:10.1111/j.1471-4159.2012.07806.x · 4.24 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genetic ablation of the histamine producing enzyme histidine decarboxylase (HDC) leads to alteration in exploratory behaviour and hippocampus-dependent learning. We investigated how brain histamine deficiency in HDC knockout mice (HDC KO) affects hippocampal excitability, synaptic plasticity, and the expression of histamine receptors. No significant alterations in: basal synaptic transmission, long-term potentiation (LTP) in the Schaffer collateral synapses, histamine-induced transient changes in the CA1 pyramidal cell excitability, and the expression of H1 and H2 receptor mRNAs were found in hippocampal slices from HDC KO mice. However, when compared to WT mice, HDC KO mice demonstrated: 1. a stronger enhancement of LTP by histamine, 2. a stronger impairment of LTP by ammonia, 3. no long-lasting potentiation of population spikes by histamine, 4. a decreased expression of H3 receptor mRNA, and 5. less potentiation of population spikes by H3 receptor agonism. Parallel measurements in the hypothalamic tuberomamillary nucleus, the origin of neuronal histamine, demonstrated an increased expression of H3 receptors in HDC KO mice without any changes in the spontaneous firing of "histaminergic" neurons without histamine and their responses to the H3 receptor agonist (R)-α-methylhistamine. We conclude that the absence of neuronal histamine results in subtle changes in hippocampal synaptic transmission and plasticity associated with alteration in the expression of H3 receptors.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In animal models of early Parkinson’s disease (PD), motor deficits are accompanied by excessive striatal glutamate release.
Blockade of group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs), endocannabinoid degradation and nitric oxide (NO) synthesis
combats PD symptoms. Activation of group I mGluRs with the specific agonist 3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG) induces long-term
depression of corticostriatal transmission (LTDDHPG) in the adult mouse striatum requiring NO synthesis downstream to cannabinoid CB1 receptor (CB1R) activation suggesting a
dual role for LTDDHPG: neuroprotective by down-regulation of glutamatergic transmission and, under certain circumstances, neurotoxic by release
of NO. We report now that LTDDHPG undergoes a developmental switch from N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-receptor-dependent/CB1R-independent to NMDA receptor-independent/CB1R-dependent
plasticity with NO playing an essential role for LTDDHPG at all developmental stages. The gain in function of CB1R is explained by their developmental up-regulation evaluated with
real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. These findings are relevant for the pathophysiology and therapy
of PD as they link the activation of group I mGluRs, endocannabinoid release, and striatal NO production.
Pflügers Archiv - European Journal of Physiology 09/2009; 459(1). DOI:10.1007/s00424-009-0732-5 · 3.07 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Effects of the gap junction blocker carbenoxolone (CBX) on tetanus- and taurine-induced long-term potentiation (LTP) were studied on Schaffer collateral-CA1 field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) in mouse hippocampal slices. Preincubation with 10 microM CBX reduced the amount of LTP induced by weak theta-burst stimulation (TBS) or a single train of stimuli (HFS; 1s at 100 Hz), but did not affect LTP induced by 30-min perfusion with 10 mM taurine. Incubation with 50-100 microM CBX 15 min before HFS or TBS abolished tetanus-induced LTP. At 100 microM CBX, the concentration that is used for the blockade of gap junctions in vitro, a long-lasting depression of fEPSPs was observed which persisted under the blockade of NMDA receptors, and receptors for corticosteroids. A similar depression was produced by the CBX inactive analogue glycyrrhizic acid and the broad spectrum calcium channel antagonist ruthenium red. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings from acutely isolated CA1 pyramidal neurons showed that CBX exerts a selective dose-dependent inhibition of NMDA-evoked currents with an IC(50)=104 microM. Thus the widely used gap junction uncoupler CBX acts as an antagonist at NMDA receptors and consequently impairs the induction of LTP.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Striatum is involved in the regulation of movements and motor skills. We have shown previously, that the osmolyte and neuromodulator taurine plays a role in striatal plasticity. We demonstrate now that hereditary taurine deficiency in taurine-transporter knock-out (TAUT KO) mice results in disinhibition of striatal network activity, which can be corrected by taurine supplementation. Modification of GABAA but not glycine receptors (taurine is a ligand for both receptor types) underlies this disinhibition. Whole-cell recordings from acutely isolated as well as cultured striatal neurons revealed a decreased agonist sensitivity of the GABAA receptor in TAUT KO neurons in the absence of changes in the maximal GABA-evoked current amplitude. The striatal GABA level in TAUT KO mice was unchanged. The amplitude enhancement of spontaneous IPSCs by zolpidem was stronger in TAUT KO than in wild-type (WT) animals. Tonic inhibition was absent in striatal neurons under control conditions but was detected after incubation with the GABA-transaminase inhibitor vigabatrin: bicuculline induced a larger shift of baseline current in WT as compared to TAUT KO neurons. Lack of taurine leads to reduced sensitivity of synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA receptors and consequently to disinhibition. These findings help in understanding neuropathologies accompanied by the loss of endogenous taurine, for instance in hepatic encephalopathy.
The Journal of Physiology 01/2008; 585(Pt 2):539-48. DOI:10.1113/jphysiol.2007.141432 · 4.54 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In models of early stage Parkinson's disease (PD), motor deficits are accompanied by excessive activation of striatal glutamate receptors. Metabotropic glutamate group I receptors (mGluR I) play an important but not well-understood role in PD progression. In mouse brain slices, bath application of the mGluR I agonist (RS)-DHPG (3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine, 100 microm for 20 min) caused a long-term depression of corticostriatal transmission (LTD(DHPG)), which was reversed by three mGluR I antagonists: LY 367385, CPCCOEt and MPEP. LTD(DHPG) required nitric oxide (NO) synthesis as it was blocked by the broad-spectrum NO synthase (NOS) inhibitor Nomega-nitro-l-arginine (NL-Arg) and impaired under blockade of neuronal NOS and in endothelial NOS-deficient mice. Release of endocannabinoids (eCB) was critically involved in this form of striatal plasticity givem that the CB1 receptor antagonist AM251 prevented LTD(DHPG), while the CB1 agonist ACEA elicited LTD. The NO synthesis necessary for LTD(DHPG) induction occurred downstream of CB1 activation as ACEA-evoked LTD was also abolished by NL-Arg. These findings are relevant for the pathophysiology of PD, as they link the overactivation of group I mGluRs and striatal NO production.
European Journal of Neuroscience 11/2007; 26(7):1889-94. DOI:10.1111/j.1460-9568.2007.05815.x · 3.67 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hyperammonemia, a major pathophysiological factor in hepatic encephalopathy, impairs long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic transmission, a cellular model of learning and memory, in the hippocampus. We have now studied the protective action of taurine on this paradigm by analyzing LTP characteristics in mouse hippocampal slices treated with ammonium chloride (1 mM) in the presence of taurine (1 mM), an ubiquitous osmolyte, antioxidant, and neuromodulator, as well as other substances with such properties. Ammonia-treated slices displayed a significant impairment of LTP maintenance. Taurine and the mitochondrial enhancer l-carnitine, but not the antioxidants (ascorbate, carnosine, and the novel compound GVS-111) or the osmolyte betaine prevented this impairment. The protective effect of taurine was preserved under the blockade of inhibitory GABA(A) and glycine receptors. It is suggested that taurine may rescue the mechanisms of hippocampal synaptic plasticity by improving mitochondrial function under hyperammonemic conditions.
Neurobiology of Disease 10/2006; 23(3):512-21. DOI:10.1016/j.nbd.2006.04.006 · 5.20 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The long-lasting enhancement of corticostriatal neurotransmission by taurine, LLE-TAU represents a complex phenomenon requiring concurrent activation of glycine, DA and Ach receptors as well as taurine uptake. The data on the mechanisms of corticostriatal LLE-TAU can be integrated in the following scheme. Taurine interaction with glycine and GABAA receptors causes depolarization of striatal medium spiny cells (Chepkova et al., 2002) which is enhanced by taurine electrogenic uptake by TauT (Sarkar et al., 2003). This depolarization leads to Ca2+ entry via low voltage gated Ca2+ channels. Muscarinic M1 receptors are expressed in medium spiny neurons (Yan et al., 2001) and regulate their excitability mostly via phospholipase C (PLC)/PKC cascade (Lin et al., 2004). Concurrent activation of M1 and PLC-coupled D1 receptors (O'Sullivan et al., 2004) can amplify Ca2+ signal via IP3- stimulated Ca2+ release from intracellular stores and stimulate PKC.
Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology 02/2006; 583:401-10. DOI:10.1007/978-0-387-33504-9_45 · 2.01 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Corticosteroid action in the brain is mediated by the mineralocorticoid (MR) and the glucocorticoid (GR) receptor. Disturbances in MR- and GR-mediated effects are thought to impair cognition, behavior, and endocrine control. To assess the function of the limbic MR in these processes, we inactivated the MR gene in the forebrain of the mouse using the Cre/loxP-recombination system. We screened the mice with a limbic MR deficiency in various learning and exploration tests. The mutant mice show impaired learning of the water-maze task and deficits in measures of working memory on the radial maze due to behavioral perseverance and stereotypy. They exhibit a hyperreactivity toward a novel object but normal anxiety-like behavior. The behavioral changes are associated with abnormalities of the mossy fiber projection and an up-regulation of GR expression in the hippocampus. Adult mutant mice show normal corticosterone levels at circadian trough and peak. This genetic model provides important information about the consequences of a permanently altered balance between limbic MR and GR, with implications for stress-related neuroendocrine and neuropsychiatric diseases.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 02/2006; 103(1):195-200. DOI:10.1073/pnas.0503878102 · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: 1. Taurine applied to mouse brain slices evokes a long-lasting enhancement (LLE) of corticostriatal synaptic transmission, LLE(TAU). 2. The occurrence of LLE(TAU) was significantly decreased in the presence of the specific antagonists at either D1 (SCH23390) or D2 (raclopride) dopamine (DA) receptors. 3. LLE(TAU) was prevented by scopolamine, a muscarinic antagonist, and significantly suppressed by the nicotinic antagonist mecamylamine. 4. Thus, dopaminergic and cholinergic mechanisms, in concert with the taurine transporter and glycine receptors, contribute critically to the induction of corticostriatal LLE(TAU).
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Preapplication of peptide piracetam analogue pyroglutamyl-asparagine amide to rat hippocampal slices facilitates long-term potentiation of focal responses in the CA1 field after weak tetanization of the synaptic input (30 pulses, 100 Hz). This treatment normalized the development of long-term potentiation after standard tetanization (100 pulses, 100 Hz) impaired by ethanol.
Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine 09/2004; 138(2):154-7. DOI:10.1007/BF02694361 · 0.37 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In experiments on hippocampal slices from young rats subjected to immobilization-cold stress we observed a pronounced increase in the amplitude of long-term potentiation of focal responses in CA1 area. Daily injections of comenic acid during stress exposure normalized parameters of long-term potentiation in the hippocampus.
Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine 12/2003; 136(5):464-6. DOI:10.1023/B:BEBM.0000017094.26711.fc · 0.37 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Taurine, a major osmolyte in the brain evokes a long-lasting enhancement (LLETAU) of synaptic transmission in hippocampal and cortico-striatal slices. Hippocampal LLETAU was abolished by the GABA uptake blocker nipecotic acid (NPA) but not by the taurine-uptake inhibitor guanidinoethyl sulphonate (GES). Striatal LLETAU was sensitive to GES but not to NPA. Semiquantitative PCR analysis and immunohistochemistry revealed that taurine transporter expression is significantly higher in the striatum than in the hippocampus. Taurine transporter-deficient mice displayed very low taurine levels in both structures and a low ability to develop LLETAU in the striatum, but not in the hippocampus. The different mechanisms of taurine-induced synaptic plasticity may reflect the different vulnerabilities of these brain regions under pathological conditions that are accompanied by osmotic changes such as hepatic encephalopathy.
The Journal of Physiology 09/2003; 550(Pt 3):911-9. DOI:10.1113/jphysiol.2003.045864 · 4.54 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Preincubation of rat hippocampal slices with 0.05-0.5 microM pyroglutamylasparagine amide improved characteristics of long-term potentiation of focal responses in the synaptic system of Schaffer collaterals-CA1 field pyramids facilitating LTP development and increasing its amplitude and duration. Presumably, the positive modulation of plastic characteristics of synaptic transmission in the hippocampusis is responsible for facilitation of learning and memory induced by pyroglutamylasparagine.
Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine 08/2003; 136(1):59-61. DOI:10.1023/A:1026092914216 · 0.37 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Nitric oxide (NO) is a retrograde messenger involved in the processes of learning and memory. The role of the endothelial isoform of nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) in striatal synaptic plasticity was investigated in eNOS-deficient (eNOS(-/-)) and wild type (WT) mice. Tetanic stimulation of cortical afferents in WT mice evoked either long-term potentiation (LTP), or long-term depression (LTD) of cortico-striatal transmission. Both these plasticity related phenomena were NMDA-receptor-dependent; LTD was blocked by sulpiride, a dopamine D2-receptor antagonist. LTP occurrence in slices from eNOS(-/-) mice was significantly reduced when compared with WT mice. The NOS inhibitor NL-ARG reduced the occurrence of LTP and increased the occurrence of LTD in WT mice, resembling the balance of LTP/LTD in eNOS(-/-) mice. Impairment of NO-synthesis thus shifts striatal plasticity towards LTD. This indicates a possible involvement of eNOS from endothelia in neuronal modulation.
Brain Research 03/2003; 964(1):159-63. DOI:10.1016/S0006-8993(02)04121-5 · 2.83 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: 1. Guanidinoethyl sulphonate (GES) is an analogue of taurine and an inhibitor of taurine transport. Interactions of GES with GABA(A) and glycine receptors are studied by whole cell recording and fast drug application in isolated striatal neurons of the mouse. 2. We confirm that GES is a weak agonist at GABA(A) receptors, and is able to antagonize GABA-evoked responses. GES did not gate GlyR. 3. GES antagonized glycine responses in a concentration-dependent and surmountable manner. Glycine dose-response curves were shifted to the right by GES (0.5 mM), yielding EC(50)s and Hill coefficients of 62 micro M and 2.5 in control, 154 micro M and 1.3 in the presence of GES. 4. GlyR-mediated taurine responses were competitively antagonized by GES. Taurine dose-response curves, in contrast to the glycine dose-response curves were shifted by GES to the right in a parallel manner. 5. The GlyR-block by GES was not voltage-dependent. 6. In contrast to our findings in the mouse, in rat striatal neurons which lack expression of the alpha3 GlyR subunit, GES shifted the glycine dose-response curve to the right in a parallel way without affecting the maximal response. Subtype-specificity of the GES action at GlyR must await further investigation in artificial expression systems. 7. We conclude that GES is a competitive antagonist at GlyR. The antagonistic action of GES at inhibitory ionotropic receptors can explain its epileptogenic action. Care must be taken with the interpretation of data on GES evoked taurine release.
British Journal of Pharmacology 12/2002; 137(6):855-60. DOI:10.1038/sj.bjp.0704940 · 4.99 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Taurine occurs at high concentrations in the forebrain and its distribution varies with (patho)physiological conditions; however, its role in neural function is poorly understood. We have now characterized its effects on corticostriatal synaptic transmission. Bath application of taurine (10 mm) to slices obtained from mice and rats exerted a biphasic action on corticostriatal field potentials. The fast and reversible inhibition by taurine was accompanied by a depolarization and conductance increase in medium spiny neurons and was sensitive to gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A and glycine receptor (GlyR) antagonists. A long-lasting enhancement (LLETAU) of field potentials was recorded after taurine withdrawal. The LLETAU was not prevented by N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA)- or by GABAA receptor-antagonists, but was sensitive to the GlyR-antagonist strychnine and blocked by the competitive taurine uptake inhibitor guanidinoethylsulphonate (GES, 1 mm). GES at 10 mm evoked an enhancement of field potentials similar to LLETAU. LLETAU depended on protein kinase C activation as it was blocked by chelerythrine, but was unaffected by trifluoperazine, and thus independent of calmodulin. LLETAU was significantly smaller in juvenile than in mature rodents. Activation of GlyRs and the specific taurine transporter by taurine evoke a long-lasting enhancement of corticostriatal transmission.
European Journal of Neuroscience 11/2002; 16(8):1523-30. DOI:10.1046/j.1460-9568.2002.02223.x · 3.67 Impact Factor