Neuronal calcium sensors and synaptic plasticity

Department of Anatomy, MRC Centre for Synaptic Plasticity, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.
Biochemical Society Transactions (Impact Factor: 3.19). 12/2009; 37(Pt 6):1359-63. DOI: 10.1042/BST0371359
Source: PubMed


Calcium entry plays a major role in the induction of several forms of synaptic plasticity in different areas of the central nervous system. The spatiotemporal aspects of these calcium signals can determine the type of synaptic plasticity induced, e.g. LTP (long-term potentiation) or LTD (long-term depression). A vast amount of research has been conducted to identify the molecular and cellular signalling pathways underlying LTP and LTD, but many components remain to be identified. Calcium sensor proteins are thought to play an essential role in regulating the initial part of synaptic plasticity signalling pathways. However, there is still a significant gap in knowledge, and it is only recently that evidence for the importance of members of the NCS (neuronal calcium sensor) protein family has started to emerge. The present minireview aims to bring together evidence supporting a role for NCS proteins in plasticity, focusing on emerging roles of NCS-1 and hippocalcin.

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    • "Although the physiological role of hippocalcin is not completely understood, it is implicated in the regulation of neuronal viability and plasticity. Evidences showed that hippocalcin is important for the homeostasis of intracellular calcium levels (Amici et al., 2009). Hippocalcin can protect hippocampal neurons against excitotoxicity induced damage by enhancing Ca 2+ extrusion and maintaining ideal intracellular Ca 2+ levels (Masuo et al., 2007). "
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    Full-text · Article · Sep 2014 · Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience
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    • "CaM is one such calciumbinding protein that is considered a major transducer of calcium signals. Calcium entry plays a major role in the induction of several forms of synaptic plasticity in different areas of the central nervous system (Amici et al. 2009). LTP induction results in calcium entry via AMPA and NMDA receptors and calcium channels, binding with CaM and then forming a Calcium/CaM complex (Miyamoto 2006) which activates CaMKII through auto-phosphorylation on threonine residue 286 (Fink and Meyer 2002). "
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    Full-text · Dataset · Jul 2014
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    • "Most NCS family members are thought to be multifunctional regulators of neuronal cellular processes [39], [49], only NCS-A types being known to function in both neuronal and non-neuronal cell types [39], [50], [51]. Whereas NCS-B proteins have neuronal functions in vertebrates, the broad endodermal expression pattern observed for AmAC (Fig. 3) suggests a non-neuronal role during coral development. "
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