Neurulation and neurite extension require the zinc transporter ZIP12 (slc39a12)

Department of Nutrition, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (Impact Factor: 9.67). 05/2013; 110(24). DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1222142110
Source: PubMed


Zn(2+) is required for many aspects of neuronal structure and function. However, the regulation of Zn(2+) in the nervous system remains poorly understood. Systematic analysis of tissue-profiling microarray data showed that the zinc transporter ZIP12 (slc39a12) is highly expressed in the human brain. In the work reported here, we confirmed that ZIP12 is a Zn(2+) uptake transporter with a conserved pattern of high expression in the mouse and Xenopus nervous system. Mouse neurons and Neuro-2a cells produce fewer and shorter neurites after ZIP12 knockdown without affecting cell viability. Zn(2+) chelation or loading in cells to alter Zn(2+) availability respectively mimicked or reduced the effects of ZIP12 knockdown on neurite outgrowth. ZIP12 knockdown reduces cAMP response element-binding protein activation and phosphorylation at serine 133, which is a critical pathway for neuronal differentiation. Constitutive cAMP response element-binding protein activation restores impairments in neurite outgrowth caused by Zn(2+) chelation or ZIP12 knockdown. ZIP12 knockdown also reduces tubulin polymerization and increases sensitivity to nocodazole following neurite outgrowth. We find that ZIP12 is expressed during neurulation and early nervous system development in Xenopus tropicalis, where ZIP12 antisense morpholino knockdown impairs neural tube closure and arrests development during neurulation with concomitant reduction in tubulin polymerization in the neural plate. This study identifies a Zn(2+) transporter that is specifically required for nervous system development and provides tangible links between Zn(2+), neurulation, and neuronal differentiation.

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    • "Recently, Chowanadisai et al. (2013a, 2013b) have shown that a loss of function of ZIP12, a Zn transporter that promotes Zn cellular uptake, resulted in impaired neuronal cell differentiation and neurite outgrowth in Xenopus embryos, linking Zn to the development of the nervous system. We speculate the NCC, a population of neuronal cells located in the developing neural tube, to be critically dependent on Zn ions and cellular Zn transport mechanisms. "
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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND Developmental zinc (Zn) deficiency increases the incidence of heart anomalies in rat fetuses, in regions and structures derived from the outflow tract. Given that the development of the outflow tract requires the presence of cardiac neural crest cells (cNCC), we speculated that Zn deficiency selectively kills cNCC and could lead to heart malformations.METHODS Cardiac NCC were isolated from E10.5 rat embryos and cultured in control media (CTRL), media containing 3 μM of the cell permeable metal chelator N, N, N′, N′-tetrakis (2-pyridylmethyl) ethylene diamine (TPEN), or in TPEN-treated media supplemented with 3 μM Zn (TPEN + Zn). Cardiac NCC were collected after 6, 8, and 24 h of treatment to assess cell viability, proliferation, and apoptosis.RESULTSThe addition of TPEN to the culture media reduced free intracellular Zn pools and cell viability as assessed by low ATP production, compared to cells grown in control or Zn-supplemented media. There was an accumulation of reactive oxygen species, a release of mitochondrial cytochrome c into the cytoplasm, and an increased cellular expression of active caspase-3 in TPEN-treated cNCC compared to cNCC cultured in CTRL or TPEN + Zn media.CONCLUSION Zn deficiency can result in oxidative stress in cNCC, and subsequent decreases in their population and metabolic activity. These data support the concept that Zn deficiency associated developmental heart defects may arise in part as a consequence of altered cNCC metabolism
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2015 · Birth Defects Research Part B Developmental and Reproductive Toxicology
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    • "All but the last exon of the gene was deleted in the proband and his unaffected father. A recent study suggests that this zinc transporter stimulates neurite outgrowth during neurodevelopment [22]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a group of neurodevelopmental conditions with a demonstrated genetic etiology. Rare (<1% frequency) copy number variations (CNVs) account for a proportion of the genetic events involved, but the contribution of these events in non-European ASD populations has not been well studied. Here, we report on rare CNVs detected in a cohort of individuals with ASD of Han Chinese background. Methods DNA samples were obtained from 104 ASD probands and their parents who were recruited from Harbin, China. Samples were genotyped on the Affymetrix CytoScan HD platform. Rare CNVs were identified by comparing data with 873 technology-matched controls from Ontario and 1,235 additional population controls of Han Chinese ethnicity. Results Of the probands, 8.6% had at least 1 de novo CNV (overlapping the GIGYF2, SPRY1, 16p13.3, 16p11.2, 17p13.3-17p13.2, DMD, and NAP1L6 genes/loci). Rare inherited CNVs affected other plausible neurodevelopmental candidate genes including GRID2, LINGO2, and SLC39A12. A 24-kb duplication was also identified at YWHAE, a gene previously implicated in ASD and other developmental disorders. This duplication is observed at a similar frequency in cases and in population controls and is likely a benign Asian-specific copy number polymorphism. Conclusions Our findings help define genomic features relevant to ASD in the Han Chinese and emphasize the importance of using ancestry-matched controls in medical genetic interpretations.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · Journal of Neurodevelopmental Disorders
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    ABSTRACT: The essentiality of zinc for normal brain development is well established. It has been suggested that primary and secondary zinc deficiencies can contribute to the occurrence of numerous human birth defects, including many involving the central nervous system. In a recent study, we searched for zinc transporter genes that were critical for neurodevelopment. We confirmed that ZIP12 is a zinc transporter encoded by the gene slc39a12 that is highly expressed in the central nervous systems of human, mouse, and frog (Xenopus tropicalis).Using loss-of-function methods, we determined that ZIP12 is required for neuronal differentiation and neurite outgrowth and necessary for neurulation and embryonic viability. These results highlight an essential need for zinc regulation during embryogenesis and nervous system development. We suggest that slc39a12 is a candidate gene for inherited neurodevelopmental defects in humans.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · Communicative & integrative biology
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