[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Several studies have proposed that brain glutamate signaling abnormalities and glial pathology have a role in the etiology of major depressive disorder (MDD). These conclusions were primarily drawn from post-mortem studies in which forebrain brain regions were examined. The locus coeruleus (LC) is the primary source of extensive noradrenergic innervation of the forebrain and as such exerts a powerful regulatory role over cognitive and affective functions, which are dysregulated in MDD. Furthermore, altered noradrenergic neurotransmission is associated with depressive symptoms and is thought to have a role in the pathophysiology of MDD. In the present study we used laser-capture microdissection (LCM) to selectively harvest LC tissue from post-mortem brains of MDD patients, patients with bipolar disorder (BPD) and from psychiatrically normal subjects. Using microarray technology we examined global patterns of gene expression. Differential mRNA expression of select candidate genes was then interrogated using quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) and in situ hybridization (ISH). Our findings reveal multiple signaling pathway alterations in the LC of MDD but not BPD subjects. These include glutamate signaling genes, SLC1A2, SLC1A3 and GLUL, growth factor genes FGFR3 and TrkB, and several genes exclusively expressed in astroglia. Our data extend previous findings of altered glutamate, astroglial and growth factor functions in MDD for the first time to the brainstem. These findings indicate that such alterations: (1) are unique to MDD and distinguishable from BPD, and (2) affect multiple brain regions, suggesting a whole-brain dysregulation of such functions.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In this report we describe findings that imply dysregulation of several fibroblast growth factor (FGF) system transcripts in frontal cortical regions of brains from human subjects with major depressive disorder (MDD). This altered gene expression was discovered by microarray analysis of frontal cortical tissue from MDD, bipolar, and nonpsychiatric control subjects and was verified by quantitative real-time PCR analysis and, importantly, in a separate cohort of MDD subjects. Furthermore, we show, through a separate analysis of specific serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)-treated and non-SSRI-treated MDD subjects that the observed changes in expression of FGF transcripts are not secondary to drug treatment. Rather, changes in specific FGF transcripts are attenuated by SSRIs and may thus be partially responsible for the mechanism of action of these drugs. We also make available the gene-expression profile of all of the other growth factors and growth factor receptors detected in these postmortem samples.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 11/2004; 101(43):15506-11. · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transcriptional profiles within discrete human brain regions are likely to reflect structural and functional specialization. Using DNA microarray technology, this study investigates differences in transcriptional profiles of highly divergent brain regions (the cerebellar cortex and the cerebral cortex) as well as differences between two closely related brain structures (the anterior cingulate cortex and the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex). Replication of this study across three independent laboratories, to address false-positive and false-negative results using microarray technology, is also discussed. We find greater than a thousand transcripts to be differentially expressed between cerebellum and cerebral cortex and very few transcripts to be differentially expressed between the two neocortical regions. We further characterized transcripts that were found to be specifically expressed within brain regions being compared and found that ontological classes representing signal transduction machinery, neurogenesis, synaptic transmission, and transcription factors were most highly represented.
Neurobiology of Disease 11/2003; 14(2):240-50. · 5.62 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: DNA microarrays are powerful tools for the analysis of the organization and regulation of the brain, in both illness and health. Such messenger RNA expression methods are outgrowths of a marriage between the several genome sequencing projects and a wide variety of physical, chemical, optical, and electronic systems. The advantages of microarray analyses include the ability to study the regulation of several genes or even the entire genome in a single experiment. However, there are substantive issues associated with the use of these tools that need to be considered before drawing conclusions about the genomic regulation of the brain. These issues include the loss of most anatomic (i.e., cellular and circuit) specificity, only fair sensitivity, lack of absolute quantitative data, poor comparability between studies, and high variability in sample values, to mention the most obvious. In this review we point to some of the solutions proposed for these problems and novel techniques and approaches for newer methods. Among these are methods for making arrays more sensitive, including nonarray messenger RNA expression systems. The future of this field and its links to deeper protein and cell biology are both emphasized.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Structural elements of the rat mu-opioid receptor important in ligand receptor binding and selectivity were examined using a site-directed mutagenesis approach. Five single amino acid mutations were made, three that altered conserved residues in the mu, delta, and kappa receptors (Asn150 to Ala, His297 to Ala, and Tyr326 to Phe) and two designed to test for mu/delta selectivity (Ile196 to Val and Val202 to Ile). Mutation of His297 in transmembrane domain 6 (TM6) resulted in no detectable binding with [3H]DAMGO (3H-labeled D-Ala2, N-Me-Phe4, Gly-ol5-enkephalin), [3H]bremazocine, or [3H]ethylketocyclazocine. Mutation of Asn150 in TM3 produces a three- to 20-fold increase in affinity for the opioid agonists morphine, DAMGO, fentanyl, beta-endorphin1-31, JOM-13, deltorphin II, dynorphin1-13, and U50,488, with no change in the binding of antagonists such as naloxone, naltrexone, naltrindole, and nor-binaltorphamine. In contrast, the Tyr326 mutation in TM7 resulted in a decreased affinity for a wide spectrum of mu, delta, and kappa agonists and antagonists. Altering Val202 to Ile in TM4 produced no change on ligand affinity, but Ile196 to Val resulted in a four- to fivefold decreased affinity for the mu agonists morphine and DAMGO, with no change in the binding affinities of kappa and delta ligands.
Journal of Neurochemistry 02/1997; 68(1):344-53. · 3.97 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Opioids have been found to modulate the immune system by regulating the function of immunocompetent cells. Several studies suggest that the interaction between immune and opioid systems is not unidirectional, but rather reciprocal, in nature. In the CNS, one cellular target of immune system activation is the astrocytes. These glial cells have been shown to produce the opioid peptide, proenkephalin, to express the mu-, delta-, and kappa-opioid receptors, and to respond to the immune factor interleukin-1 beta (IL1 beta) with an increased proenkephalin synthesis. To characterize more completely the astrocytic opioid response to immune factor stimulation, we examined the effect of IL1 beta (1 ng/ml) on the mu-receptor mRNA expression in primary astrocyte-enriched cultures derived from rat (postnatal day 1-2) cortex, striatum, cerebellum, hippocampus, and hypothalamus. A 24-h treatment with IL1 beta produced a 70-80% increase in the mu-receptor mRNA expression in the striatal, cerebellar, and hippocampal cultures but had no effect on this expression in the cortical and hypothalamic cultures. This observation represents one of the few demonstrated increases in levels of the mu-receptor mRNA in vitro or in vivo, since the cloning of the receptor. The enhanced mu-receptor mRNA expression, together with the previous observation that IL1 beta stimulates proenkephalin synthesis in astrocytes, supports the IL1 beta-mediated regulation of an astroglial opioid peptide and receptor in vitro, a phenomenon that may be significant in the modulation of the gliotic response to neuronal damage. Therefore, the astroglial opioid "system" may be important in the IL1 beta-initiated, coordinated response to CNS infection, trauma, or injury.
Journal of Neurochemistry 02/1996; 66(1):425-8. · 3.97 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The existence of opioid receptors within glial cell membranes has been proposed by several laboratories based on biochemical and radioligand binding data. The recent cloning of the mu, delta and kappa receptors has enabled us to directly examine the issue of opioid receptor expression in rat brain astroglia by using solution hybridization/ribonuclease protection assays to analyze the total RNA obtained from primary cultures of cortical, striatal, cerebellar, hippocampal and hypothalamic astrocytes. The results indicate that all five glial cultures expressed mu, delta and kappa receptor mRNA. The rank order of receptor mRNA abundance, expressed collectively across all five cultures, was determined to be delta > or = kappa > mu. An analysis of the glial distribution profile for each receptor type revealed that mu receptor mRNA levels were the most abundantly expressed in cortical cultures, while the greatest levels of delta receptor mRNA were found in the cortical and hypothalamic cultures, and significant kappa receptor mRNA levels were produced by the cortical, hypothalamic and cerebellar cultures. Furthermore, the five glial cultures each expressed different levels of total opioid receptor (mu + delta + kappa) mRNA. The rank order of total opioid receptor mRNA expression across different astroglial cultures was found to be cortex > hypothalamus > cerebellum = hippocampus > striatum. An analysis of the relative expression profiles for mu, delta and kappa receptor mRNA within each culture revealed that all cultures manifested relatively high levels of delta and kappa receptor mRNA, but relatively low levels of mu receptor mRNA. Generally, cortical, hippocampal and hypothalamic cultures were characterized by comparable levels of delta and kappa receptor mRNA, and little, if any, mu receptor mRNA. However, striatal cultures were characterized by a high level of delta receptor mRNA which was approximately twice and four times that of the kappa and mu receptor mRNA, respectively. In contrast, cerebellar cultures expressed predominantly kappa receptor mRNA at a level which was almost twice that of the delta receptor mRNA, and expressed very little mu receptor mRNA. These data show that primary astroglial cultures not only express mu, delta and kappa receptor mRNAs, but they do so in a manner dependent upon receptor type and brain region. This suggests a regional heterogeneity of astrocytes with respect to opioid receptor expression, a characteristic previously described only for neurons. Furthermore, it suggests the existence of an additional anatomical component in CNS opioid systems.
Molecular Brain Research 01/1996; 34(2):209-20. · 2.00 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Within the large family of G-protein-coupled receptors, a picture is emerging which contrasts the binding of small ligands and the binding of peptides to the seven-helix configuration of the proteins. Because of its unique richness in both peptide and non-peptide ligands, the opioid receptor family offers several advantages for achieving a better understanding of similarities and differences in ligand/receptor interactions across different classes of agonists and antagonists. Since multiple, naturally occurring, ligands interact with the multiple receptors with varying degrees of selectivity, this family is also an excellent model for examining the structural basis of selectivity. Thus, the molecular basis of binding affinity and selectivity of the kappa and the delta opioid receptors was investigated by the construction of four kappa/delta chimeric receptors. The pharmacological profiles of these chimeras as well as those of the wild type kappa and delta receptors were determined by their binding with several different categories of opioid ligands. A linear model was used to deduce the relative contribution of each corresponding pairs of kappa-delta receptor segments to the binding of a given ligand. The results show that the kappa and delta receptors bind the same opioid core differently and achieve their selectivity through different mechanisms. In addition, the interaction of a peptide ligand with a receptor appears to be different from that of a small ligand. Furthermore, these results point to a particularly important role of the second extracellular loop and the top half of transmembrane domain 4 in the binding of prodynorphin products. Together, the results suggest that these peptide receptors can be bound and activated via multiple binding pockets as a function of their own topography and the nature of the interacting ligand.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/1995; 270(21):12730-6. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The existence of opioid receptors within glial cell membranes has been proposed by several laboratories based on biochemical and radioligand binding data. The recent cloning of the μ, δ and κ receptors has enabled us to directly examine the issue of opioid receptor expression in rat brain astroglia by using solution hybridization/ribonuclease protection assays to analyze the total RNA obtained from primary cultures of cortical, striatal, cerebellar, hippocampal and hypothalamic astrocytes. The results indicate that all give glial cultures expressed μ, δ and κ receptor mRNA. The rank order of receptor mRNA abundance, expressed collectively across all five cultures, was determined to be δ ≥ κ ⪢ μ. An analysis of the glial distribution profile for each receptor type revealed that μ receptor mRNA levels were the most abundantly expressed in cortical cultures, while the greatest levels of δ receptor mRNA were found in the cortical and hypothalamic cultures, and significant κ receptor mRNA levels were produced by the cortical, hypothalamic and cerebellar cultures. Furthermore, the five glial cultures each expressed different levels of total opioid receptor (μ + δ + κ) mRNA. The rank order of total opioid receptor mRNA expression across different astroglial cultures was found to be cortex > hypothalamus > cerebellum = hippocampus > striatum. An analysis of the relative expression profiles for μ, δ and κ receptor mRNA within each culture revealed that all cultures manifested relatively high levels of δ and κ receptor mRNA, but relatively low levels of μ receptor mRNA. Generally, cortical, hippocampal and hypothalamic cultures were characterized by comparable levels of δ and κ receptor mRNA, and little, if any, μ receptor mRNA. However, striatal cultures were characterized by a high level of δ receptor mRNA which was approximately twice and four times that of the κ and μ receptor mRNA, respectively. In contrast, cerebellar cultures expressed predominantly κ receptor mRNA at a level which was almost twice that of the δ receptor mRNA, and expressed very little μ receptor mRNA.These data show that primary astroglial cultures not only express μ, δ and κ receptor mRNAs, but they do so in a manner dependent upon receptor type and brain region. This suggests a regional heterogeneity of astrocytes with respect to opioid receptor expression, a characteristic previously described only for neurons. Furthermore, it suggests the existence of an additional anatomical component in CNS opioid systems.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptors are the three main types of opioid receptors found in the central nervous system (CNS) and periphery. These receptors and the peptides with which they interact are important in a number of physiological functions, including analgesia, respiration, and hormonal regulation. This study examines the expression of mu, delta, and kappa receptor mRNAs in the rat brain and spinal cord using in situ hybridization techniques. Tissue sections were hybridized with 35S-labeled cRNA probes to the rat mu (744-1,064 b), delta (304-1,287 b), and kappa (1,351-2,124 b) receptors. Each mRNA demonstrates a distinct anatomical distribution that corresponds well to known receptor binding distributions. Cells expressing mu receptor mRNA are localized in such regions as the olfactory bulb, caudate-putamen, nucleus accumbens, lateral and medial septum, diagonal band of Broca, bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, most thalamic nuclei, hippocampus, amygdala, medial preoptic area, superior and inferior colliculi, central gray, dorsal and median raphe, raphe magnus, locus coeruleus, parabrachial nucleus, pontine and medullary reticular nuclei, nucleus ambiguus, nucleus of the solitary tract, nucleus gracilis and cuneatus, dorsal motor nucleus of vagus, spinal cord, and dorsal root ganglia. Cellular localization of delta receptor mRNA varied from mu or kappa, with expression in such regions as the olfactory bulb, allo- and neocortex, caudate-putamen, nucleus accumbens, olfactory tubercle, ventromedial hypothalamus, hippocampus, amygdala, red nucleus, pontine nuclei, reticulotegmental nucleus, motor and spinal trigeminal, linear nucleus of the medulla, lateral reticular nucleus, spinal cord, and dorsal root ganglia. Cells expressing kappa receptor mRNA demonstrate a third pattern of expression, with cells localized in regions such as the claustrum, endopiriform nucleus, nucleus accumbens, olfactory tubercle, medial preoptic area, bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, amygdala, most hypothalamic nuclei, median eminence, infundibulum, substantia nigra, ventral tegmental area, raphe nuclei, paratrigeminal and spinal trigeminal, nucleus of the solitary tract, spinal cord, and dorsal root ganglia. These findings are discussed in relation to the physiological functions associated with the opioid receptors.
The Journal of Comparative Neurology 01/1995; 350(3):412-38. · 3.66 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The distribution of cells expressing mu-receptor mRNA and mu-receptor binding sites were compared in brain and spinal cord tissue sections using a combination of in situ hybridization and receptor autoradiographic techniques. mu-Receptor mRNA was visualized with a 35S-labeled cRNA probe directed to transmembrane III-VI of the rat mu-receptor, while mu-receptor binding sites were labeled with the mu-selective ligand [3H]DAMGO. A high correspondence between the mu-receptor mRNA and receptor binding distributions was observed in the nucleus of the accessory olfactory bulb, anterior olfactory nuclei, striatal patches of the nucleus accumbens and caudate-putamen, endopiriform nucleus, claustrum, diagonal band of Broca, globus pallidus, ventral pallidum, bed nucleus of stria terminalis, most thalamic nuclei, medial and posteriocortical medial amygdala, lateral, dorsomedial, posterior and mammillary nuclei of the hypothalamus, presubiculum, subiculum, rostral interpeduncular nucleus, median raphe, inferior colliculus, parabrachial nucleus, locus coeruleus, central grey, nucleus ambiguus, nucleus of the solitary tract, nucleus gracilis, nucleus cuneatus, and the dorsal motor nucleus of vagus. Differences in mu-receptor mRNA and receptor binding distributions were observed in several regions, including the olfactory bulb, cortex, hippocampus, superior colliculus, spinal trigeminal nucleus, cochlear nucleus and spinal cord, and may be due to mu-receptor transport to presynaptic terminals.
Brain Research 05/1994; 643(1-2):245-65. · 2.88 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A full-length cDNA encoding the guinea pig kappa opioid (dynorphin) receptor has been isolated. The deduced protein contains 380 aa and seven hydrophobic alpha-helices characteristic of the G protein-coupled receptors. This receptor is 90% identical to the mouse and rat kappa receptors, with the greatest level of divergence in the N-terminal region. When expressed in COS-7 cells, the receptor displays high affinity and stereospecificity toward dynorphin peptides and other kappa-selective opioid ligands such as U50, 488. It does not bind the mu- and delta-selective opioid ligands. The expressed receptor is functionally coupled to G protein(s) to inhibit adenylyl cyclase and Ca2+ channels. The guinea pig kappa receptor mRNA is expressed in many brain areas, including the cerebellum, a pattern that agrees well with autoradiographic maps of classical guinea pig kappa binding sites. Species differences in the pharmacology and mRNA distribution between the cloned guinea pig and rat kappa receptors may be worthy of further examination.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 05/1994; 91(9):3779-83. · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We have isolated a rat cDNA clone that displays 75% amino acid homology with the mouse delta and rat kappa opioid receptors. The cDNA (designated pRMuR-12) encodes a protein of 398 amino acids comprising, in part, seven hydrophobic domains similar to those described for other G protein-linked receptors. Data from binding assays conducted with COS-1 cells transiently transfected with a CMV mammalian expression vector containing the full coding region of pRMuR-12 demonstrated mu receptor selectivity. In situ hybridization mRNA analysis revealed an mRNA distribution in rat brain that corresponds well to the distribution of binding sites labeled with mu-selective ligands. Based upon these observations, we conclude that pRMuR-12 encodes a mu opioid receptor.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A full-length cDNA was isolated from a rat striatal library by using low-stringency screening with two PCR fragments, one spanning transmembrane domains 3-6 of the mouse delta opioid receptor and the other unidentified but homologous to the mouse delta receptor from rat brain. The novel cDNA had a long open reading frame encoding a protein of 380 residues with 59% identity to the mouse delta receptor and topography consistent with a seven-helix guanine nucleotide-binding protein-coupled receptor. COS-1 cells transfected with the coding region of this clone showed high-affinity binding to kappa opioid receptor-selective ligands such as dynorphin A and U-50,488 and also nonselective opioid ligands such as bremazocine, ethylketocyclazocine, and naloxone. Not bound at all (or bound with low affinity) were dynorphin A-(2-13), enantiomers of naloxone and levophanol [i.e., (+)-naloxone and dextrorphan], and selective mu and delta opioid receptor ligands. Activation of the expressed receptor by kappa receptor agonists led to inhibition of cAMP. Finally, in situ hybridization revealed a mRNA distribution in rat brain that corresponded well to the distribution of binding sites labeled with kappa-selective ligands. These observations indicate that we have cloned a cDNA encoding a rat kappa receptor of the kappa 1 subtype.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 12/1993; 90(21):9954-8. · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) cDNA we previously isolated from the rat hippocampus differs from the clone isolated from the kidney at the 5'-untranslated (5'UT) region. The kidney clone (alpha MR mRNA) and the hippocampal clone (beta MR mRNA) possess unique 5'UT sequences of 220 and 300 nucleotides, respectively, but share an invariant peptide-coding domain and appear to encode an identical MR protein. The two mRNA variants may represent tissue-specific forms of the MR or may be coexpressed in the rat hippocampus along with other 5'UT variants. Here, we report that three mRNA subtypes were found in the hippocampus; their relative abundance was as follows: alpha = beta > gamma. The three mRNA variants were differentially distributed within the hippocampal subfields, with the alpha form being highly enriched in CA2, dentate, the fasciculum cinereum, and the indusium griseum, whereas beta and gamma forms were evenly distributed through CA1-4. Adrenalectomy selectively increased alpha MR mRNA content, but the changes were restricted to CA1, CA2, and CA3 regions. We conclude that multiple MR mRNAs are differentially expressed in the rat hippocampus. The expression of alpha MR mRNA is specifically increased during adrenalectomy, suggesting that the increase in total MR mRNA content documented previously arises from a substantial increase in a single MR variant that elevates the total MR mRNA content, with the apparent elevation reflecting the average of regulated and unregulated transcripts. It is suggested from our data that a complex mechanism involving transcription and translation regulates MR expression in the rat hippocampus.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Melanin concentrating hormone (MCH) is a key neuroendocrine peptide which is involved in the regulation of body color in teleost fish. Antigenically similar peptides exist in higher vertebrates including rodents and man. The precise function(s) of these peptides in these higher vertebrates has yet to be fully elucidated, although regulatory roles in stress-induced or corticotropin-releasing hormone-stimulated ACTH release and/or water balance have been proposed. The salmon, rat, and human MCH cDNA clones have been isolated and sequenced. We isolated and characterized the structure of the rat MCH gene. In addition to providing the complete nucleotide sequence of this gene, we demonstrate that there is a single copy of this gene in the rat genome. The structure of the rat MCH gene indicates that the MCH mRNA is encoded by three exons. Using primer extension and RNase protection assays, the transcriptional start sites of hypothalamic MCH mRNA were determined, allowing us to define the promoter region of this gene. We also characterize the central nervous system distribution of expression of the MCH gene by Northern blot analysis, demonstrating that the MCH mRNA is found predominantly if not exclusively within the hypothalamus.
DNA and Cell Biology 12/1990; 9(9):637-45. · 2.34 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We conducted a combined genome-wide association study (GWAS) of 7,481 individuals with bipolar disorder (cases) and 9,250 controls as part of the Psychiatric GWAS Consortium. Our replication study tested 34 SNPs in 4,496 independent cases with bipolar disorder and 42,422 independent controls and found that 18 of 34 SNPs had P < 0.05, with 31 of 34 SNPs having signals with the same direction of effect (P = 3.8 Ã 10(-7)). An analysis of all 11,974 bipolar disorder cases and 51,792 controls confirmed genome-wide significant evidence of association for CACNA1C and identified a new intronic variant in ODZ4. We identified a pathway comprised of subunits of calcium channels enriched in bipolar disorder association intervals. Finally, a combined GWAS analysis of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder yielded strong association evidence for SNPs in CACNA1C and in the region of NEK4-ITIH1-ITIH3-ITIH4. Our replication results imply that increasing sample sizes in bipolar disorder will confirm many additional loci.