Homer 1a uncouples metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 from postsynaptic effectors.
ABSTRACT: Metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) and Homer proteins play critical roles in neuronal functions including plasticity, nociception, epilepsy, and drug addiction. Furthermore, Homer proteins regulate mGluR1/5 function by acting as adapters and facilitating coupling to effectors such as the inositol triphosphate receptor. However, although Homer proteins and their interaction with mGluRs have been the subject of intense study, direct measurements of Homer-induced changes in postsynaptic mGluR-effector coupling have not been reported. This question was addressed here by examining glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) in rat autaptic hippocampal cultures. In most neurons, the group I mGluR agonist (S)-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine strongly inhibited the EPSC acutely. This modulation occurred postsynaptically, was mediated primarily by mGluR5, and was inositol triphosphate receptor-dependent. Expression of the dominant negative, immediate early form of Homer, Homer 1a, strongly reduced EPSC modulation, but the W24A mutant of Homer 1a, which cannot bind mGluRs, had no effect. (S)-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine-mediated intracellular calcium responses in the processes of Homer 1a-expressing neurons were reduced compared with those in Homer 1a W24A-expressing cells. However, neither the distribution of mGluR5 nor the modulation of somatic calcium channels was altered by Homer 1a expression. These data demonstrate that Homer 1a can reduce mGluR5 coupling to postsynaptic effectors without relying on large changes in the subcellular distribution of the receptor. Thus, alteration of mGluR signaling by changes in Homer protein expression may represent a viable mechanism for fine-tuning synaptic strength in neurons.
Project description:Traumatic brain injury (TBI) produces excessive glutamate, leading to excitotoxicity via the activation of glutamate receptors. Postsynaptic density scaffold proteins have crucial roles in mediating signal transduction from glutamate receptors to their downstream mediators. Therefore, studies on the mechanisms underlying regulation of excitotoxicity by scaffold proteins can uncover new treatments for TBI. Here, we demonstrated that the postsynaptic scaffold protein Homer 1a was neuroprotective against TBI in vitro and in vivo, and this neuroprotection was associated with its effects on group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs). Upon further study, we found that Homer 1a mainly affected neuronal injury induced by mGluR1 activation after TBI and also influenced mGluR5 function when its activity was restored. The ability of Homer 1a to disrupt mGluR-ERK signaling contributed to its ability to regulate the functions of mGluR1 and mGluR5 after traumatic injury. Intracellular Ca(2+) and PKC were two important factors involved in the mediation of mGluR-ERK signaling by Homer 1a. These results define Homer 1a as a novel endogenous neuroprotective agent against TBI.
Project description:Group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs), including mGluR1 and mGluR5, are G protein–coupled receptors (GPCRs) that are expressed at excitatory synapses in brain and spinal cord. GPCRs are often negatively regulated by specific G protein–coupled receptor kinases and subsequent binding of arrestin-like molecules. Here we demonstrate an alternative mechanism in which group I mGluRs are negatively regulated by proline-directed kinases that phosphorylate the binding site for the adaptor protein Homer, and thereby enhance mGluR–Homer binding to reduce signaling. This mechanism is dependent on a multidomain scaffolding protein, Preso1, that binds mGluR, Homer and proline-directed kinases and that is required for their phosphorylation of mGluR at the Homer binding site. Genetic ablation of Preso1 prevents dynamic phosphorylation of mGluR5, and Preso1(?/?) mice exhibit sustained, mGluR5-dependent inflammatory pain that is linked to enhanced mGluR signaling. Preso1 creates a microdomain for proline-directed kinases with broad substrate specificity to phosphorylate mGluR and to mediate negative regulation.
Project description:At hippocampal excitatory synapses, endocannabinoids (eCBs) mediate two forms of retrograde synaptic inhibition that are induced by postsynaptic depolarization or activation of metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs). The homer family of molecular scaffolds provides spatial organization to regulate postsynaptic signaling cascades, including those activated by mGluRs. Expression of the homer 1a (H1a) immediate-early gene produces a short homer protein that lacks the domain required for homer oligomerization, enabling it to uncouple homer assemblies. Here, we report that H1a differentially modulates two forms of eCB-mediated synaptic plasticity, depolarization-induced suppression of excitation (DSE) and metabotropic suppression of excitation (MSE). EPSCs were recorded from cultured hippocampal neurons and DSE evoked by a 15 s depolarization to 0 mV and MSE evoked by a type I mGluR agonist. Expression of H1a enhanced DSE and inhibited MSE at the same synapse. Many physiologically important stimuli initiate H1a expression including brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Treating hippocampal cultures with BDNF increased transcription of H1a and uncoupled homer 1c-GFP (green fluorescent protein) clusters. BDNF treatment blocked MSE and enhanced DSE. Thus, physiological changes in H1a expression gate the induction pathway for eCB-mediated synaptic plasticity by uncoupling mGluR from eCB production.
Project description:To investigate the role of M1 muscarininc acetylcholine receptors (m1 receptors) in metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR)-mediated long-term depression (LTD), we produced mouse lines in which deletion of the m1 gene is restricted to the forebrain (FB-m1KO) or hippocampal CA3 pyramidal neurons (CA3-m1KO). Stimulation in FB-m1KO hippocampal slices resulted in excitatory postsynaptic potentials and long-term synaptic plasticity (long-term potentiation and LTD) similar to controls. The mice were deficient in (S)-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine hydrate (DHPG)-induced mGluR LTD, which correlated with a presynaptic increase in the release of neurotransmitters. Protein kinase C (PKC) activity, which is downstream from both mGluRs and m1 receptors, was reduced in CA3 but not in CA1. The presynaptic requirement of m1 receptors was confirmed by the lack of DHPG-induced mGluR LTD in the CA1 of slices from CA3-m1KO mice. mGluR LTD was rescued by stimulating PKC activity pharmacologically in CA3-m1KO mice. These data confirm a role for PKC activation in presynaptic induction of mGluR LTD and distinguish between the roles of mGluRs and m1 receptors.
Project description:Group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) increase cellular levels of inositol-1,4,5-triphosphate (IP3) and thereby trigger intracellular Ca2+ release. Also, group I mGluRs are organized with members of Homer scaffold proteins into multiprotein complexes involved in postreceptor signaling. In this study, we investigated the relative importance of the IP3/Ca2+ signaling and novel Homer proteins in group I mGluR-mediated activation of extracellular signal-regulated protein kinases 1 and 2 (ERK1/2) in cultured rat striatal neurons. We found that selective activation of mGluR5, but not mGluR1, increased ERK1/2 phosphorylation. Whereas the IP3/Ca2+ cascade transmits a small portion of signals from mGluR5 to ERK1/2, the member of Homer family Homer1b/c forms a central signaling pathway linking mGluR5 to ERK1/2 in a Ca2+-independent manner. This was demonstrated by the findings that the mGluR5-mediated ERK1/2 phosphorylation was mostly reduced by a cell-permeable Tat-fusion peptide that selectively disrupted the interaction of mGluR5 with the Homer1b/c and by small interfering RNAs that selectively knocked down cellular levels of Homer1b/c proteins. Furthermore, ERK1/2, when only coactivated by both IP3/Ca2+- and Homer1b/c-dependent pathways, showed the ability to phosphorylate two transcription factors, Elk-1 and cAMP response element-binding protein, and thereby facilitated c-Fos expression. Together, we have identified two coordinated signaling pathways (a conventional IP3/Ca2+ vs a novel Homer pathway) that differentially mediate the mGluR5-ERK coupling in neurons. Both the Ca2+-dependent and -independent pathways are corequired to activate ERK1/2 to a level sufficient to achieve the mGluR5-dependent synapse-to-nucleus communication imperative for the transcriptional regulation.
Project description:Normal aging is associated with impairments in cognition, especially learning and memory. However, major individual differences are known to exist. Using the classical Morris Water Maze (MWM) task, we discriminated a population of 24-months old Long Evans aged rats in two groups--memory-impaired (AI) and memory-unimpaired (AU) in comparison with 6-months old adult animals. AI rats presented deficits in learning, reverse memory and retention. At the molecular level, an increase in metabotropic glutamate receptors 5 (mGluR5) was observed in post-synaptic densities (PSD) in the hippocampus of AU rats after training. Scaffolding Homer 1b/c proteins binding to group 1 mGluR facilitate coupling with its signaling effectors while Homer 1a reduces it. Both Homer 1a and 1b/c levels were up-regulated in the hippocampus PSD of AU animals following MWM task. Using immunohistochemistry we further demonstrated that mGluR5 as well as Homer 1b/c stainings were enhanced in the CA1 hippocampus sub-field of AU animals. In fact mGluR5 and Homer 1 isoforms were more abundant and co-localized in the hippocampal dendrites in AU rats. However, the ratio of Homer 1a/Homer 1b/c bound to mGluR5 in the PSD was four times lower for AU animals compared to AI rats. Consequently, AU animals presented higher PKC?, ERK, p70S6K, mTOR and CREB activation. Finally the expression of immediate early gene Arc/Arg3.1 was shown to be higher in AU rats in accordance with its role in spatial memory consolidation. On the basis of these results, a model of successful cognitive aging with a critical role for mGluR5, Homer 1 proteins and downstream signalling pathways is proposed here.
Project description:Electrophysiological studies described potentiation of NMDA receptor function by metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) of group I occurring postsynaptically. Since release-enhancing NMDA receptors exist on noradrenergic terminals and group I mGluRs have recently been identified on these nerve endings, we have investigated if NMDA receptor-mGluR interactions also can occur at the presynaptic level.Rat hippocampus and human neocortex synaptosomes were labelled with [(3)H]noradrenaline and superfused with mGluR agonists and antagonists. NMDA-evoked [(3)H]noradrenaline release was produced by removal of external Mg(2+) or by simultaneous application of NMDA and AMPA in Mg(2+)-containing solutions.The mGluR1/5 agonist 3,5-DHPG, inactive on its own, potentiated both the release of [(3)H]noradrenaline elicited by AMPA/NMDA/glycine and that evoked by NMDA/glycine following Mg(2+) removal. The effect of 3,5-DHPG on the AMPA/NMDA/glycine-induced release was insensitive to the mGluR1 antagonist CPCCOEt, but it was abolished by the mGluR5 antagonist MPEP; moreover, it was potentiated by the mGluR5 positive allosteric modulator DFB. When NMDA receptors were activated by Mg(2+) removal, both mGluR5 and mGluR1 contributed to the evoked release, the mGluR-mediated release being blocked only by CPCCOEt and MPEP in combination. Experiments with human neocortex synaptosomes show NMDA receptor-mGluR interactions qualitatively similar to those observed in rodents.Group I mGluRs, both of the mGluR1 and mGluR5 subtypes, co-localize with NMDA receptors on noradrenergic terminals of rat hippocampus and human neocortex. Depending on the mode of activation, NMDA receptors exert differential permissive roles on the activation of presynaptic mGluR1 and mGluR5.
Project description:Cerebellar basket and stellate neurons (BSNs) provide feed-forward inhibition to Purkinje neurons (PNs) and thereby play a principal role in determining the output of the cerebellar cortex. During low-frequency transmission, glutamate released at parallel fiber synapses excites BSNs by binding to AMPA receptors; high-frequency transmission also recruits N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors. We find that, in addition to these ligand-gated receptors, a G-protein-coupled glutamate receptor subtype participates in exciting BSNs. Stimulation of metabotropic glutamate receptor 1alpha (mGluR1alpha) with the mGluR agonist (RS)-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG) leads to an increase in spontaneous firing of BSNs and indirectly to an increase in the frequency of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSCs) recorded in PNs. Under conditions in which ligand-gated glutamate receptors are blocked, parallel fiber stimulation generates a slow excitatory postsynaptic current (EPSC) in BSNs that is inhibited by mGluR1alpha-selective antagonists. This slow EPSC is capable of increasing BSN spiking and indirectly increasing sIPSCs frequency in PNs. Our findings reinforce the idea that distinct subtypes of glutamate receptors are activated in response to different patterns of activity at excitatory synapses. The results also raise the possibility that mGluR1alpha-dependent forms of synaptic plasticity may occur at excitatory inputs to BSNs.
Project description:Actions of endocannabinoids in the cerebellum can be demonstrated following distinct stimulation protocols in Purkinje cells. First, depolarization-induced elevations of intracellular Ca2+ lead to the suppression of neurotransmitter release from both inhibitory and excitatory afferents. In another case, postsynaptic group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) trigger a strong inhibition of the glutamatergic inputs from parallel and climbing fibers. Both pathways involve endocannabinoids retrogradely acting on type 1 cannabinoid receptors (CB1Rs) at presynaptic terminals. Here, we show that group I mGluR activation also depresses GABAergic transmission at the synapses between molecular layer interneurons and Purkinje cells. Using paired recordings, we found that application of the group I mGluR agonist (RS)-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine reduced the evoked IPSCs in Purkinje cells. This effect was independent of postsynaptic Ca2+ increases and was completely blocked by a CB1R antagonist. Experiments performed with the GTP-analogues GDP-betaS and GTP-gammaS provided evidence that endocannabinoids released after G-protein activation can also inhibit GABAergic inputs onto nearby, unstimulated Purkinje cells. Block of the enzymes DAG lipase or phospholipase C reduced the group I mGluR-dependent inhibition, suggesting that 2-arachidonyl glycerol could act as retrograde messenger. Finally, group I mGluR activation by brief bursts of activity of the parallel fibers induced a short-lived depression of spontaneous IPSCs via presynaptic CB1Rs. Our results reveal a mechanism with potential physiological importance, by which glutamatergic synapses induce an endocannabinoid-mediated inhibition of the GABAergic inputs onto Purkinje cells.
Project description:Group 1 metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR1/mGluR5) play an integral role in neurodevelopment and are implicated in psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia. mGluR1 and mGluR5 are expressed as homodimers, which is important for their functionality and pharmacology. We examined the protein expression of dimeric and monomeric mGluR1? and mGluR5 in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and hippocampus throughout development (juvenile/adolescence/adulthood) and in the perinatal phencyclidine (PCP) model of schizophrenia. Under control conditions, mGluR1? dimer expression increased between juvenile and adolescence (209-328%), while monomeric levels remained consistent. Dimeric mGluR5 was steadily expressed across all time points; monomeric mGluR5 was present in juveniles, dramatically declining at adolescence and adulthood (-97-99%). The mGluR regulators, Homer 1b/c and Norbin, significantly increased with age in the PFC and hippocampus. Perinatal PCP treatment significantly increased juvenile dimeric mGluR5 levels in the PFC and hippocampus (37-50%) but decreased hippocampal mGluR1? (-50-56%). Perinatal PCP treatment also reduced mGluR1? dimer levels in the PFC at adulthood (-31%). These results suggest that Group 1 mGluRs have distinct dimeric and monomeric neurodevelopmental patterns, which may impact their pharmacological profiles at specific ages. Perinatal PCP treatment disrupted the early expression of Group 1 mGluRs which may underlie neurodevelopmental alterations observed in this model.