Facilitatory Actions of Serotonin Type 3 Receptors on GABAergic Inhibitory Synaptic Transmission in the Spinal Superficial Dorsal Horn

Department of Physiology and Biological Information, Dokkyo Medical University School of Medicine, Kitakobayashi 880, Mibu, Tochigi 321-0293, Japan.
Journal of Neurophysiology (Impact Factor: 2.89). 05/2009; 102(3):1459-71. DOI: 10.1152/jn.91160.2008
Source: PubMed


Analgesic effects of serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine [5-HT]) type 3 (5-HT3) receptors may involve the release of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the spinal dorsal horn. However, the precise synaptic mechanisms for 5-HT3 receptor-mediated spinal analgesia are not clear. In this study, we investigated whether GABAergic neurons in the superficial dorsal horn (SDH) express functional 5-HT3 receptors and how these 5-HT3 receptors affect GABAergic inhibitory synaptic transmission in the SDH, by using slice preparations from adult glutamate decarboxylase 67-green fluorescent protein (GAD67-GFP) knock-in mice. Tight-seal whole cell recordings from GFP-positive and -negative neurons showed that 5-HT3 receptor-specific agonist 2-methyl-serotonin (2-Me-5-HT) induced inward currents in a substantial population of both GFP-positive and -negative neurons. Additionally, we confirmed expression of 5-HT3 receptors in both types of neurons by single-cell reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis. Further, GABAA receptor-mediated inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs)-both those evoked by electrical stimulation and those occurring spontaneously in tetrodotoxin (i.e., miniature IPSCs [mIPSCs])-were recorded from GFP-negative neurons. 2-Me-5-HT increased the amplitude of the evoked IPSCs and the frequency of mIPSCs. The amplitude of mIPSCs was not affected by 2-Me-5-HT, suggesting that 5-HT augments GABAergic synaptic transmission via presynaptic mechanisms. The present observations indicate that 5-HT3 receptors are expressed on both somadendritic regions and presynaptic terminals of GABAergic neurons and regulate GABAA receptor-mediated inhibitory synaptic transmission in the SDH. Taken together, these results provide clues for the underlying mechanisms of the antinociceptive actions of 5-HT3 receptors in the spinal dorsal horn.

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    • "5-HT3aR is the only 5-HT-gated cation channel (Chameau and Van Hooft 2006; Faerber et al. 2007) in the 5-HT receptor family. Activation of these receptors that are expressed in the soma, dendrites , and axons of CCK interneurons modulates membrane excitation and neurotransmitter release (Sudweeks et al. 2002; Fukushima et al. 2009) of these interneurons, to relay the information carried by serotonergic ascending afferents from midbrain raphe 5-HT neurons and mediate fast synaptic transmission in the hippocampal network (Varga et al. 2009). "
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    ABSTRACT: Gamma-frequency oscillatory activity plays an important role in information integration across brain areas. Disruption in gamma oscillations is implicated in cognitive impairments in psychiatric disorders, and 5-HT3 receptors (5-HT3Rs) are suggested as therapeutic targets for cognitive dysfunction in psychiatric disorders. Using a 5-HT3aR-EGFP transgenic mouse line and inducing gamma oscillations by carbachol in hippocampal slices, we show that activation of 5-HT3aRs, which are exclusively expressed in cholecystokinin (CCK)-containing interneurons, selectively suppressed and desynchronized firings in these interneurons by enhancing spike-frequency accommodation in a small conductance potassium (SK)-channel-dependent manner. Parvalbumin-positive interneurons therefore received diminished inhibitory input leading to increased but desynchronized firings of PV cells. As a consequence, the firing of pyramidal neurons was desynchronized and gamma oscillations were impaired. These effects were independent of 5-HT3aR-mediated CCK release. Our results therefore revealed an important role of 5-HT3aRs in gamma oscillations and identified a novel crosstalk among different types of interneurons for regulation of network oscillations. The functional link between 5-HT3aR and gamma oscillations may have implications for understanding the cognitive impairments in psychiatric disorders.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2014 · Cerebral Cortex
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    • "Although cell bodies expressing these receptors in the dorsal horn are further identified as excitatory neurons [59,61], some 5-HT3 receptor-labeled neurons in rat dorsal horn express glutamate decarboxylase (GAD), a marker for GABAnergic neurons [21]. Recent studies have demonstrated in the mouse that some dorsal horn neurons sensitive to 5-HT3 receptor agonists were GAD positive [62] and that some 5-HT3 receptor mRNA-containing dorsal horn neurons were GAD positive [63]. Thus, 5-HT3 receptors appear to be expressed in both excitatory and inhibitory intrinsic neurons and terminals in the spinal dorsal horn. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background It has been recently recognized that the descending serotonin (5-HT) system from the rostral ventromedial medulla (RVM) in the brainstem and the 5-HT3 receptor subtype in the spinal dorsal horn are involved in enhanced descending pain facilitation after tissue and nerve injury. However, the mechanisms underlying the activation of the 5-HT3 receptor and its contribution to facilitation of pain remain unclear. Results In the present study, activation of spinal 5-HT3 receptors by intrathecal injection of a selective 5-HT3 receptor agonist SR 57227 induced spinal glial hyperactivity, neuronal hyperexcitability and pain hypersensitivity in rats. We found that there was neuron-to-microglia signaling via the chemokine fractalkine, microglia to astrocyte signaling via cytokine IL-18, astrocyte to neuronal signaling by IL-1β, and enhanced activation of NMDA receptors in the spinal dorsal horn. Glial hyperactivation in spinal dorsal horn after hindpaw inflammation was also attenuated by molecular depletion of the descending 5-HT system by intra-RVM Tph-2 shRNA interference. Conclusions These findings offer new insights into the cellular and molecular mechanisms at the spinal level responsible for descending 5-HT-mediated pain facilitation during the development of persistent pain after tissue and nerve injury. New pain therapies should focus on prime targets of descending facilitation-induced glial involvement, and in particular the blocking of intercellular signaling transduction between neurons and glia.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2014 · Molecular Pain
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    • "The dual expression of GAD and serotonin receptor in a single blastocoelar cell, as observed in the present study, is not unique to sea urchin, but instead is widely recognized in vertebrates, such as in stage 42–48 Xenopus tadpole (Huang and Moody, 1998), the prefrontal cortex of rat and primates (Jakab and Goldman-Rakic, 1998; Williams et al., 2002; Yan, 2002; Santana et al., 2004) and mouse spinal superficial dorsal horn (Fukushima et al., 2009). Whether the dual expression in the same blastocoelar TMC is a temporary phenotype at the Prism stage or the terminal phenotype that lasts through the larval stages in sea urchin or throughout the adulthood remains to be elucidated. "
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    ABSTRACT: The ontogenetic origin of blastocoelar glutamate decarboxylase (GAD)-expressing cells (GADCs) in larvae of the sea urchin Hemicentrotus pulcherrimus was elucidated. Whole-mount in situ hybridisation (WISH) detected transcription of the gene that encodes GAD in H. pulcherrimus (Hp-gad) in unfertilised eggs and all blastomeres in morulae. However, at and after the swimming blastula stage, the transcript accumulation was particularly prominent in clumps of ectodermal cells throughout the embryonic surface. During the gastrula stage, the transcripts also accumulated in the endomesoderm and certain blastocoelar cells. Consistent with the increasing number of Hp-gad transcribing cells, immunoblot analysis indicated that the relative abundance of Hp-Gad increased considerably from the early gastrula stage until the prism stage. The expression pattern of GADCs determined by immunohistochemistry was identical to the pattern of Hp-gad transcript accumulation determined using WISH. In early gastrulae, GADCs formed blastocoelar cell aggregates around the blastopore with primary mesenchyme cells. The increase in the number of blastocoelar GADCs was inversely proportional to the number of ectodermal GADCs ranging from a few percent of total GADCs in early gastrulae to 80% in late prism larvae; this depended on ingression of ectodermal GADCs into the blastocoel. Some of the blastocoelar GADCs were fluorescein-positive in the larvae that developed from the 16-cell stage chimeric embryos; these comprised fluorescein-labeled mesomeres and unlabelled macromeres and micromeres. Our finding indicates that some of the blastocoelar GADCs are derived from the mesomeres and thus they are the new group of mesenchyme cells, the tertiary mesenchyme cells.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2013 · Biology Open
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