[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The metabotropic glutamate receptor subtype 1 (mGluR1, Grm1) in cerebellar Purkinje cells (PCs) is essential for motor coordination and motor learning. At the synaptic level, mGluR1 has a critical role in long-term synaptic depression (LTD) at parallel fiber (PF)-PC synapses, and in developmental elimination of climbing fiber (CF)-PC synapses. mGluR1a, a predominant splice variant in PCs, has a long carboxyl (C)-terminal domain that interacts with Homer scaffolding proteins. Cerebellar roles of the C-terminal domain at both synaptic and behavior levels remain poorly understood. To address this question, we introduced a short variant, mGluR1b, which lacks this domain into PCs of mGluR1-knock-out (KO) mice (mGluR1b-rescue mice). In mGluR1b-rescue mice, mGluR1b showed dispersed perisynaptic distribution in PC spines. Importantly, mGluR1b-rescue mice exhibited impairments in inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor (IP3R)-mediated Ca(2+) release, CF synapse elimination, LTD induction, and delay eyeblink conditioning: they showed normal transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) currents and normal motor coordination. In contrast, PC-specific rescue of mGluR1a restored all cerebellar defects of mGluR1-KO mice. We conclude that the long C-terminal domain of mGluR1a is required for the proper perisynaptic targeting of mGluR1, IP3R-mediated Ca(2+) release, CF synapse elimination, LTD, and motor learning, but not for TRPC currents and motor coordination.
Journal of Neuroscience 02/2014; 34(7):2702-12. · 6.91 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Endosomal trafficking mediated by Rab11 and Arf6 small GTPases is essential for various neuronal functions. Family of Rab11-interacting protein 3 (FIP3)/Arfophilin-1, also termed Eferin, is a dual effector for Rab11 and Arf6 and implicated in endosomal trafficking during cytokinesis. To understand the neuronal functions of FIP3, we first showed the widespread neuronal expression of FIP3 mRNA in adult mouse brain by in situ hybridization. Immunohistochemical analysis showed the association of FIP3 with a subpopulation of endosomes labeled with EEA1 and syntaxin 12 in hippocampal neurons. Immunoblot analysis showed the progressive increase of FIP3 with a peak around postnatal day 15 during hippocampal development. Furthermore, knockdown of endogenous FIP3 decreased the total dendritic length of cultured hippocampal neurons with a concomitant increase in the number of short (<40 μm) primary dendrites. Together, FIP3 is suggested to regulate dendritic formation possibly through Rab11- and Arf6-mediated endosomal trafficking.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The membrane trafficking and actin cytoskeleton remodeling mediated by ADP ribosylation factor 6 (Arf6) are functionally linked to various neuronal processes including neurite formation and maintenance, neurotransmitter release, and receptor internalization. EFA6A is an Arf6-specific guanine nucleotide exchange factor that is abundantly expressed in the brain. In this study, we identified sorting nexin-1 (SNX1), a retromer component that is implicated in endosomal sorting and trafficking, as a novel interacting partner for EFA6A by yeast two-hybrid screening. The interaction was mediated by the C-terminal region of EFA6A and a BAR domain of SNX1, and further confirmed by pull-down assay and immunoprecipitation from mouse brain lysates. In situ hybridization analysis demonstrated the widespread expression of SNX1 in the mouse brain, which overlapped with the expression of EFA6A in the forebrain. Immunofluorescent analysis revealed the partial colocalization of EFA6A and SNX1 in the dendritic fields of the hippocampus. Immunoelectron microscopic analysis revealed the overlapping subcellular localization of EFA6A and SNX1 at the post-synaptic density and endosomes in dendritic spines. In Neuro-2a neuroblastoma cells, expression of either EFA6A or SNX1 induced neurite outgrowth, which was further enhanced by co-expression of EFA6A and SNX1. The present findings suggest a novel mechanism by which EFA6A regulates Arf6-mediated neurite formation through the interaction with SNX1. We identified sorting nexin-1 (SNX1) as a novel binding partner for EFA6A, and demonstrated overlapping ultrastructural localization of EFA6A and SNX1 in spines and dendrites of hippocampal neurons. Furthermore, we showed that this interaction enhanced neurite outgrowth of Neuro-2a cells. The present findings suggest the importance of the interaction between EFA6A and SNX1 in Arf6-mediated neuronal functions in dendritic spines.
Journal of Neurochemistry 11/2013; · 3.97 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Syntaxin-1A is a t-SNARE that is involved in vesicle docking and vesicle fusion; it is important in presynaptic exocytosis in neurons because it interacts with many regulatory proteins. Previously, we found 1) that autophosphorylated Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII), an important modulator of neural plasticity, interacts with syntaxin-1A to regulate exocytosis, and 2) that a syntaxin missense mutation [R151G] attenuated this interaction. To more precisely determine the physiological importance of this interaction between CaMKII and syntaxin, we generated mice with a knock-in (KI) syntaxin-1A [R151G] mutation. Complexin is a molecular clamp involved in exocytosis, and in the KI mice, recruitment of complexin to the SNARE complex was reduced because of an abnormal CaMKII-syntaxin interaction. Nevertheless, SNARE complex formation was not inhibited, and, consequently, basal neurotransmission was normal. However, the KI mice did exhibit abnormal presynaptic plasticity, and they had a more pronounced synaptic response than did wild-type littermates; this pronounced response included several behavioral abnormalities. Notably, the R151G phenotypes were generally similar to previously reported CaMKII mutant phenotypes. Additionally, synaptic recycling in these KI mice was delayed, and the density of synaptic vesicles was reduced. Taken together, our results indicated that this single point mutation in syntaxin-1A causes abnormal regulation of neuronal plasticity and vesicle recycling, and that the affected syntaxin-1A-CaMKII interaction is essential to normal brain and synaptic functions in vivo.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 10/2013; · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Type I phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate 5-kinase (PIP5KI)γ is one of the phosphoinositide kinases that produce phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate, which is a critical regulator of cell adhesion formation, actin dynamics and membrane trafficking. Here, we examined the functional roles of PIP5KIγ in radial neuronal migration during cortical formation. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis revealed that PIP5KIγ_v2/v6 and PIP5KIγ_v3 were expressed throughout cortical development with distinct expression patterns. In situ hybridisation analysis showed that PIP5KIγ mRNA was expressed throughout the cortical layers. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that PIP5KIγ was localised in a punctate manner in the radial glia and migrating neuroblasts. Knockdown of PIP5KIγ using in utero electroporation disturbed the radial neuronal migration and recruitment of talin and focal adhesion kinase to puncta beneath the plasma membrane. The same inhibitory effect on neuronal migration was observed by overexpression of a catalytically inactive mutant of PIP5KIγ_v2 but not PIP5KIγ_v1 or PIP5KIγ_v3. These findings suggest an essential role of PIP5KIγ, particularly PIP5KIγ_i2, in neuronal migration, possibly through recruitment of adhesion components to the plasma membrane.
European Journal of Neuroscience 06/2013; · 3.75 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The adult CNS contains an abundant population of oligodendrocyte precursor cells (NG2(+) cells) that generate oligodendrocytes and repair myelin, but how these ubiquitous progenitors maintain their density is unknown. We generated NG2-mEGFP mice and used in vivo two-photon imaging to study their dynamics in the adult brain. Time-lapse imaging revealed that NG2(+) cells in the cortex were highly dynamic; they surveyed their local environment with motile filopodia, extended growth cones and continuously migrated. They maintained unique territories though self-avoidance, and NG2(+) cell loss though death, differentiation or ablation triggered rapid migration and proliferation of adjacent cells to restore their density. NG2(+) cells recruited to sites of focal CNS injury were similarly replaced by a proliferative burst surrounding the injury site. Thus, homeostatic control of NG2(+) cell density through a balance of active growth and self-repulsion ensures that these progenitors are available to replace oligodendrocytes and participate in tissue repair.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Oligodendrocytes associate with axons to establish myelin and provide metabolic support to neurons. In the spinal cord of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) mice, oligodendrocytes downregulate transporters that transfer glycolytic substrates to neurons and oligodendrocyte progenitors (NG2(+) cells) exhibit enhanced proliferation and differentiation, although the cause of these changes in oligodendroglia is unknown. We found extensive degeneration of gray matter oligodendrocytes in the spinal cord of SOD1 (G93A) ALS mice prior to disease onset. Although new oligodendrocytes were formed, they failed to mature, resulting in progressive demyelination. Oligodendrocyte dysfunction was also prevalent in human ALS, as gray matter demyelination and reactive changes in NG2(+) cells were observed in motor cortex and spinal cord of ALS patients. Selective removal of mutant SOD1 from oligodendroglia substantially delayed disease onset and prolonged survival in ALS mice, suggesting that ALS-linked genes enhance the vulnerability of motor neurons and accelerate disease by directly impairing the function of oligodendrocytes.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pathological examination of dementia with Lewy bodies patients identified the presence of abnormal α-synuclein (αSyn) aggregates in the presynaptic terminals. αSyn is involved in the regulation of soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor (SNARE) complex. Importantly, αSyn-transgenic mouse and postmortem examination of patients with Parkinson's disease have demonstrated the abnormal distribution of SNARE protein in presynaptic terminals. In this study, we investigated the effects of SNARE dysfunction on endogenous αSyn using Snap25(S187A/S187A) mutant mice. These mice have homozygous knock-in gene encoding unphosphorylatable S187A-substituted synaptosomal-associated protein of 25 kDa (SNAP-25). The mice displayed a significant age-dependent change in the distribution of αSyn and its Ser(129)-phosphorylated form in abnormally hypertrophied glutamatergic nerve terminals in the striatum. Electron-microscopic analysis revealed the abnormally condensed synaptic vesicles with concomitant mislocalization of αSyn protein to the periactive zone in the glutamatergic nerve terminals. However, the Snap25(S187A/S187A) mutant mouse harbored no abnormalities in the nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons. Our present results suggest that SNARE dysfunction is the initial trigger of mislocalization and accumulation of αSyn, and probably is an important pathomechanism of α-synucleinopathies.
Journal of Neuroscience 11/2012; 32(48):17186-96. · 6.91 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Protein incorporated later into tight junctions (Pilt), also termed tight junction-associated protein 1 or tight junction protein 4, is a coiled-coil domain-containing protein that was originally identified as a human discs large-interacting protein. In this study, we identified Pilt as an Arf6-binding protein by yeast two-hybrid screening. By immunocytochemical analysis, Pilt was shown to be predominantly localized at the trans-Golgi complex and to exhibit diffuse cytoplasmic distribution in association with endosomes and plasma membrane in NIH3T3 cells. Silencing of endogenous Pilt disrupted the Golgi structure. The present findings suggest the functional involvement of Pilt in the maintenance of the Golgi structure. STRUCTURED SUMMARY OF PROTEIN INTERACTIONS: GM130 and Piltcolocalize by fluorescence microscopy (View interaction) Arf6(Q67L)physically interacts with Pilt by two hybrid (View Interaction: 1, 2) Piltphysically interacts with Arf6(Q67L) by pull down (View interaction).
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mitochondria divide and fuse continuously, and the balance between these two processes regulates mitochondrial shape. Alterations in mitochondrial dynamics are associated with neurodegenerative diseases. Here we investigate the physiological and cellular functions of mitochondrial division in postmitotic neurons using in vivo and in vitro gene knockout for the mitochondrial division protein Drp1. When mouse Drp1 was deleted in postmitotic Purkinje cells in the cerebellum, mitochondrial tubules elongated due to excess fusion, became large spheres due to oxidative damage, accumulated ubiquitin and mitophagy markers, and lost respiratory function, leading to neurodegeneration. Ubiquitination of mitochondria was independent of the E3 ubiquitin ligase parkin in Purkinje cells lacking Drp1. Treatment with antioxidants rescued mitochondrial swelling and cell death in Drp1KO Purkinje cells. Moreover, hydrogen peroxide converted elongated tubules into large spheres in Drp1KO fibroblasts. Our findings suggest that mitochondrial division serves as a quality control mechanism to suppress oxidative damage and thus promote neuronal survival.
The Journal of Cell Biology 05/2012; 197(4):535-51. · 10.82 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) express NMDA receptors (NMDARs) and form synapses with glutamatergic neurons throughout the CNS. Although glutamate influences the proliferation and maturation of these progenitors in vitro, the role of NMDAR signaling in oligodendrogenesis and myelination in vivo is not known. Here, we investigated the consequences of genetically deleting the obligatory NMDAR subunit NR1 from OPCs and their oligodendrocyte progeny in the CNS of developing and mature mice. NMDAR-deficient OPCs proliferated normally, achieved appropriate densities in gray and white matter, and differentiated to form major white matter tracts without delay. OPCs also retained their characteristic physiological and morphological properties in the absence of NMDAR signaling and were able to form synapses with glutamatergic axons. However, expression of calcium-permeable AMPA receptors (AMPARs) was enhanced in NMDAR-deficient OPCs. These results suggest that NMDAR signaling is not used to control OPC development but to regulate AMPAR-dependent signaling with surrounding axons, pointing to additional functions for these ubiquitous glial cells.
Journal of Neuroscience 08/2011; 31(35):12650-62. · 6.91 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The planar cell polarity (PCP) protein, Prickle (Pk), is conserved in invertebrates and vertebrates, and regulates cellular morphogenesis and movement. Vertebrate Pk consists of at least two family members, Pk1 and Pk2, both of which are expressed in the brain; however, their localization and function at synapses remain elusive. Here, we show that Pk2 is expressed mainly in the adult brain and is tightly associated with the postsynaptic density (PSD) fraction obtained by subcellular fractionation. In primary cultured rat hippocampal neurons, Pk2 is colocalized with PSD-95 and synaptophysin at synapses. Moreover, immunoelectron microcopy shows that Pk2 is localized at the PSD of asymmetric synapses in the hippocampal CA1 region. Biochemical assays identified that Pk2 forms a complex with PSD proteins including PSD-95 and NMDA receptor subunits via the direct binding to the C-terminal guanylate kinase domain of PSD-95. These results indicate that Pk2 is a novel PSD protein that interacts with PSD-95 and NMDA receptors through complex formations in the brain.
Journal of biochemistry 02/2011; 149(6):693-700. · 1.95 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: SynArfGEF, also known as BRAG3 or IQSEC3, is a member of the brefeldin A-resistant Arf-GEF/IQSEC family and was originally identified by screening for mRNA species associated with the post-synaptic density fraction. In this study, we demonstrate that synArfGEF activates Arf6, using Arf pull down and transferrin incorporation assays. Immunohistochemical analysis reveals that synArfGEF is present in somata and dendrites as puncta in close association with inhibitory synapses, whereas immunoelectron microscopic analysis reveals that synArfGEF localizes preferentially at post-synaptic specializations of symmetric synapses. Using yeast two-hybrid and pull down assays, we show that synArfGEF is able to bind utrophin/dystrophin and S-SCAM/MAGI-2 scaffolding proteins that localize at inhibitory synapses. Double immunostaining reveals that synArfGEF co-localizes with dystrophin and S-SCAM in cultured hippocampal neurons and cerebellar cortex, respectively. Both β-dystroglycan and S-SCAM were immunoprecipitated from brain lysates using anti-synArfGEF IgG. Taken together, these findings suggest that synArfGEF functions as a novel regulator of Arf6 at inhibitory synapses and associates with the dystrophin-associated glycoprotein complex and S-SCAM.
Journal of Neurochemistry 12/2010; 116(6):1122-37. · 3.97 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mammalian CNS contains a ubiquitous population of glial progenitors known as NG2+ cells that have the ability to develop into oligodendrocytes and undergo dramatic changes in response to injury and demyelination. Although it has been reported that NG2+ cells are multipotent, their fate in health and disease remains controversial. Here, we generated PDGFαR-CreER transgenic mice and followed their fate in vivo in the developing and adult CNS. These studies revealed that NG2+ cells in the postnatal CNS generate myelinating oligodendrocytes, but not astrocytes or neurons. In regions of neurodegeneration in the spinal cord of ALS mice, NG2+ cells exhibited enhanced proliferation and accelerated differentiation into oligodendrocytes but remained committed to the oligodendrocyte lineage. These results indicate that NG2+ cells in the normal CNS are oligodendrocyte precursors with restricted lineage potential and that cell loss and gliosis are not sufficient to alter the lineage potential of these progenitors.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Actin reorganization in dendritic spines is hypothesized to underlie neuronal plasticity. Actin-related proteins, therefore, might serve as useful markers of plastic changes in dendritic spines. Here, we utilized memory deficits induced by fimbria-fornix transection (FFT) in rats as a dementia model to screen candidate memory-associated molecules by using a two-dimensional gel method. Comparison of protein profiles between the transected and control sides of hippocampi after unilateral FFT revealed a reduction in the F-actin capping protein (CapZ) signal on the FFT side. Subsequent immunostaining of brain sections and cultured hippocampal neurons revealed that CapZ localized in dendritic spines and the signal intensity in each spine varied widely. The CapZ content decreased after suppression of neuronal firing by tetrodotoxin treatment in cultured neurons, indicating rapid and activity-dependent regulation of CapZ accumulation in spines. To test input specificity of CapZ accumulation in vivo, we delivered high-frequency stimuli to the medial perforant path unilaterally in awake rats. This path selectively inputs to the middle molecular layer of the dentate gyrus, where CapZ immunoreactivity increased. We conclude that activity-dependent, synapse-specific regulation of CapZ redistribution might be important in both maintenance and remodeling of synaptic connections in neurons receiving specific spatial and temporal patterns of inputs.
Genes to Cells 06/2010; 15(7):737-47. · 2.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA)-type glutamate receptors require auxiliary subunits termed transmembrane AMPA receptor regulatory proteins (TARPs), which promote receptor trafficking to the cell surface and synapses and modulate channel pharmacology and gating. Of six TARPs, gamma-2 and gamma-7 are the two major TARPs expressed in the cerebellum. In the present study, we pursued their roles in synaptic expression of cerebellar AMPA receptors. In the cerebellar cortex, gamma-2 and gamma-7 were preferentially localized at various asymmetrical synapses. Using quantitative Western blot and immunofluorescence, we found severe reductions in GluA2 and GluA3 and mild reduction in GluA4 in gamma-2-knockout (KO) cerebellum, whereas GluA1 and GluA4 were moderately reduced in gamma-7-KO cerebellum. GluA2, GluA3 and GluA4 were further reduced in gamma-2/gamma-7 double-KO (DKO) cerebellum. The large losses of GluA2 and GluA3 in gamma-2-KO mice and further reductions in DKO mice were confirmed at all asymmetrical synapses examined with postembedding immunogold. Most notably, the GluA2 level in the postsynaptic density fraction, GluA2 labeling density at parallel fiber-Purkinje cell synapses, and AMPA receptor-mediated currents at climbing fiber-Purkinje cell synapses were all reduced to approximately 10% of the wild-type levels in DKO mice. On the other hand, the reduction in GluA4 in gamma-7-KO granular layer reflected its loss at mossy fiber-granule cell synapses, whereas that of GluA1 and GluA4 in gamma-7-KO molecular layer was caused, at least partly, by their loss in Bergmann glia. Therefore, gamma-2 and gamma-7 cooperatively promote synaptic expression of cerebellar AMPA receptors, and the latter also promotes glial expression.
European Journal of Neuroscience 06/2010; 31(12):2204-20. · 3.75 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Glaucoma is a leading cause of blindness worldwide. Nonetheless, the mechanism of its pathogenesis has not been well-elucidated, particularly at the molecular level, because of insufficient availability of experimental genetic animal models.
Here we demonstrate that deficiency of Vav2 and Vav3, guanine nucleotides exchange factors for Rho guanosine triphosphatases, leads to an ocular phenotype similar to human glaucoma. Vav2/Vav3-deficient mice, and to a lesser degree Vav2-deficient mice, show early onset of iridocorneal angle changes and elevated intraocular pressure, with subsequent selective loss of retinal ganglion cells and optic nerve head cupping, which are the hallmarks of glaucoma. The expression of Vav2 and Vav3 tissues was demonstrated in the iridocorneal angle and retina in both mouse and human eyes. In addition, a genome-wide association study screening glaucoma susceptibility loci using single nucleotide polymorphisms analysis identified VAV2 and VAV3 as candidates for associated genes in Japanese open-angle glaucoma patients.
Vav2/Vav3-deficient mice should serve not only as a useful murine model of spontaneous glaucoma, but may also provide a valuable tool in understanding of the pathogenesis of glaucoma in humans, particularly the determinants of altered aqueous outflow and subsequent elevated intraocular pressure.
PLoS ONE 01/2010; 5(2):e9050. · 3.73 Impact Factor