Dysbindin regulates hippocampal LTP by controlling NMDA receptor surface expression.
ABSTRACT: Abnormalities in NMDA receptor (NMDAR) function have been implicated in schizophrenia. Here, we show that dysbindin, a schizophrenia-susceptibility gene widely expressed in the forebrain, controls the surface expression of NMDARs in a subunit-specific manner. Imaging analyses revealed a marked increase in surface NR2A, but not NR2B, in hippocampal neurons derived from dysbindin-null mutant mice (Dys-/-). Exogenous expression of dysbindin reduced NR2A surface expression in both wild-type and Dys-/- neurons. Biotinylation experiments also revealed an increase in surface expression of endogenous NR2A in Dys-/- neurons. Disruption of the dysbindin gene dramatically increased NR2A-mediated synaptic currents, without affecting AMPA receptor currents, in hippocampal CA1 neurons. The Dys-/- hippocampal slices exhibited an enhanced LTP, whereas basal synaptic transmission, presynaptic properties, and LTD were normal. Thus, dysbindin controls hippocampal LTP by selective regulation of the surface expression of NR2A. These results reveal subunit-specific regulation of NMDARs by dysbindin, providing an unexpected link between these two proteins implicated in schizophrenia.
Project description:In the adult mouse hippocampus, NMDA receptors (NMDARs) of CA1 neurons play an important role in the synaptic plasticity. The location of NMDARs can determine their roles in the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP). However, the extrasynaptic NMDARs (ES-NMDARs) dependent LTP haven't been reported. Here, through the use of a 5-Hz stimulation and MK-801 (an irreversible antagonist of NMDARs) in the CA1 neurons of adult mice hippocampal slices, synaptic NMDARs were selectively inhibited and NMDAR-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents were not recovered. We found that a robust LTP was induced by 3-train 100-Hz stimulation when the synaptic NMDARs and extrasynaptic NR2B containing NMDARs were blocked, but not in the any of the following conditions: blocking of all NMDARs (synaptic and extrasynaptic), blocking of the synaptic NMDARs, and blocking of the synaptic NMDARs and extrasynaptic NR2A-containing NMDARs. The results indicate that this LTP is ES-NMDARs dependent, and NR2B-containing ES-NMDARs modulates the threshold of LTP induction.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Zinc distributes widely in the central nervous system, especially in the hippocampus, amygdala and cortex. The dynamic balance of zinc is critical for neuronal functions. Zinc modulates the activity of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) through the direct inhibition and various intracellular signaling pathways. Abnormal NMDAR activities have been implicated in the aetiology of many brain diseases. Sustained zinc accumulation in the extracellular fluid is known to link to pathological conditions. However, the mechanism linking this chronic zinc exposure and NMDAR dysfunction is poorly understood.<h4>Methodology/principal findings</h4>We reported that chronic zinc exposure reduced the numbers of NR1 and NR2A clusters in cultured hippocampal pyramidal neurons. Whole-cell and synaptic NR2A-mediated currents also decreased. By contrast, zinc did not affect NR2B, suggesting that chronic zinc exposure specifically influences NR2A-containg NMDARs. Surface biotinylation indicated that zinc exposure attenuated the membrane expression of NR1 and NR2A, which might arise from to the dissociation of the NR2A-PSD-95-Src complex.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Chronic zinc exposure perturbs the interaction of NR2A to PSD-95 and causes the disorder of NMDARs in hippocampal neurons, suggesting a novel action of zinc distinct from its acute effects on NMDAR activity.
Project description:Dysbindin has been implicated in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia, but little is known about how dysbindin affects neuronal function in the circuitry underlying psychosis and related behaviors. Using a dysbindin knockout line (dys(-/-)) derived from the natural dysbindin mutant Sandy mice, we have explored the role of dysbindin in dopamine signaling and neuronal function in the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Combined cell imaging and biochemical experiments revealed a robust increase in the dopamine receptor D2, but not D1, on cell surface of neurons from dys(-/-) cortex. This was due to an enhanced recycling and insertion, rather than reduced endocytosis, of D2. Disruption of dysbindin gene resulted in a marked decrease in the excitability of fast-spiking (FS) GABAergic interneurons in both PFC and striatum. Dys(-/-) mice also exhibited a decreased inhibitory input to pyramidal neurons in layer V of PFC. The increased D2 signaling in dys(-/-) FS interneurons was associated with a more pronounced increase in neuronal firing in response to D2 agonist, compared to that in wild-type interneurons. Taken together, these results suggest that dysbindin regulates PFC function by facilitating D2-mediated modulation of GABAergic function.
Project description:Schizophrenia is a severe and highly heritable disorder. Dystrobrevin-binding protein 1 (DTNBP1), also known as dysbindin-1, has been implicated in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. Specifically, dysbindin-1 mRNA and protein expression are decreased in the brains of subjects with this disorder. Mice lacking dysbinidn-1 also display behavioral phenotypes similar to those observed in schizophrenic patients. However, it remains unknown whether deletion of dysbindin-1 impacts functions of the amygdala, a brain region that is critical for emotional processing, which is disrupted in patients with schizophrenia. Here, we show that dysbindin-1 is expressed in both excitatory and inhibitory neurons of the basolateral amygdala (BLA). Deletion of dysbindin-1 in male mice (Dys-/-) impaired cued and context-dependent threat memory, without changes in measures of anxiety. The behavioral deficits observed in Dys-/- mice were associated with perturbations in the BLA, including the enhancement of GABAergic inhibition of pyramidal neurons, increased numbers of parvalbumin interneurons, and morphological abnormalities of dendritic spines on pyramidal neurons. Our findings highlight an important role for dysbindin-1 in the regulation of amygdalar function and indicate that enhanced inhibition of BLA pyramidal neuron activity may contribute to the weakened threat memory expression observed in Dys-/- mice.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>NMDA-type glutamate receptors (NMDARs) are major contributors to long-term potentiation (LTP), a form of synaptic plasticity implicated in the process of learning and memory. These receptors consist of calcium-permeating NR1 and multiple regulatory NR2 subunits. A majority of studies show that both NR2A and NR2B-containing NMDARs can contribute to LTP, but their unique contributions to this form of synaptic plasticity remain poorly understood.<h4>Methodology/principal findings</h4>In this study, we show that NR2A and NR2B-containing receptors promote LTP differently in the CA1 hippocampus of 1-month old mice, with the NR2A receptors functioning through Ras-GRF2 and its downstream effector, Erk Map kinase, and NR2B receptors functioning independently of these signaling molecules.<h4>Conclusions/significance</h4>This study demonstrates that NR2A-, but not NR2B, containing NMDA receptors induce LTP in pyramidal neurons of the CA1 hippocampus from 1 month old mice through Ras-GRF2 and Erk. This difference add new significance to the observation that the relative levels of these NMDAR subtypes is regulated in neurons, such that NR2A-containing receptors become more prominent late in postnatal development, after sensory experience and synaptic activity.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The precise effect of low frequency stimulation (LFS) as a newly postulated, anticonvulsant therapeutic approach on seizure-induced changes in synaptic transmission has not been completely determined. HYPOTHESIS:In this study, the LFS effect on impaired, synaptic plasticity in kindled rats was investigated. METHODS:Hippocampal kindled rats received LFS (4 trials consisting of one train of 200 monophasic square waves, 0.1 ms pulse duration, 1 Hz) on four occasions. LTP induction was evaluated using whole-cell recordings of evoked excitatory and inhibitory post-synaptic potentials (EPSPs and IPSPs respectively) in CA1 neurons in hippocampal slices. In addition, the hippocampal excitatory and inhibitory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs and IPSCs), and the gene expression of NR2A, GluR2 and ?2 were evaluated. RESULTS:LTP induction was attenuated in excitatory and inhibitory synapses in hippocampal slices of kindled rats. When LFS was applied in kindled animals, LTP was induced in EPSPs and IPSPs. Moreover, LFS increased and decreased the threshold intensities of EPSCs and IPSCs respectively. In kindled animals, NR2A gene expression increased, while ?2 gene expression decreased. GluR2 gene expression did not significantly change. Applying LFS in kindled animals mitigated these changes: No significant differences were observed in NR2A, ?2 and GluR2 gene expression in the kindled+LFS and control groups. CONCLUSION:The application of LFS in kindled animals restored LTP induction in both EPSPs and IPSPs, and returned the threshold intensity for induction of EPSCs, IPSCs and gene expression to similar levels as controls.
Project description:The NR2 subunit composition of NMDA receptors (NMDARs) varies during development, and this change is important in NMDAR-dependent signaling. In particular, synaptic NMDAR switch from containing mostly NR2B subunit to a mixture of NR2B and NR2A subunits. The pathways by which neurons differentially traffic NR2A- and NR2B-containing NMDARs are poorly understood. Using single-particle and -molecule approaches and specific antibodies directed against NR2A and NR2B extracellular epitopes, we investigated the surface mobility of native NR2A and NR2B subunits at the surface of cultured neurons. The surface mobility of NMDARs depends on the NR2 subunit subtype, with NR2A-containing NMDARs being more stable than NR2B-containing ones, and NR2A subunit overexpression stabilizes surface NR2B-containing NMDARs. The developmental change in the synaptic surface content of NR2A and NR2B subunits was correlated with a developmental change in the time spent by the subunits within synapses. This suggests that the switch in synaptic NMDAR subtypes depends on the regulation of the receptor surface trafficking.
Project description:The N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptor (NMDAR), long implicated in developmental plasticity, shows decay time kinetics that shorten postnatally as NR2A subunits are added to the receptor. Neither the mechanism nor immediate effect of this change is known. We studied developing NMDAR currents by using visual neurons in slices from NR2A knockout (NR2AKO) and WT mice. Both strains show increased dendritic levels of synaptic density scaffolding protein PSD-95 with age. Dendritic levels of NR2A increased at the same time in WT and immunoprecipitated with PSD-95. PSD-95NMDAR binding was significantly decreased in the NR2AKO. Moreover, NMDAR miniature currents (minis) were lost and rise times of NMDAR evoked currents increased in mutant mice. Age-matched WT cells showed NR2A-rich receptors predominating in minis, yet slow NR2B mediated currents persisted in evoked currents. Disrupting photoreceptor activation of retinal ganglion cells eliminated increases in PSD-95 and NR2A in superior collicular dendrites of WT mice and slowed the loss of miniature NMDAR currents in NR2AKOs. These data demonstrate that NMDARs that respond to single quantal events mature faster during development by expressing the NR2A subunit earlier than NMDARs that respond to evoked release. We hypothesize that NR2A-rich NMDARs may be localized to the center of developing synapses by an activity-dependent process that involves the targeting of PSD-95 to the postsynaptic density. Neonatal receptors become restricted to perisynpatic or extrasynaptic sites, where they participate primarily in evoked currents.
Project description:Dysbindin-1, a protein that regulates aspects of early and late brain development, has been implicated in the pathobiology of schizophrenia. As the functional roles of the three major isoforms of dysbindin-1, (A, B, and C) remain unknown, we generated a novel mutant mouse, dys-1A-/-, with selective loss of dysbindin-1A and investigated schizophrenia-related phenotypes in both males and females. Loss of dysbindin-1A resulted in heightened initial exploration and disruption in subsequent habituation to a novel environment, together with heightened anxiety-related behavior in a stressful environment. Loss of dysbindin-1A was not associated with disruption of either long-term (olfactory) memory or spontaneous alternation behavior. However, dys-1A-/- showed enhancement in delay-dependent working memory under high levels of interference relative to controls, ie, impairment in sensitivity to the disruptive effect of such interference. These findings in dys-1A-/- provide the first evidence for differential functional roles for dysbindin-1A vs dysbindin-1C isoforms among phenotypes relevant to the pathobiology of schizophrenia. Future studies should investigate putative sex differences in these phenotypic effects.
Project description:N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) are glutamate-gated ion channels that are critical to the regulation of excitatory synaptic function in the CNS. NMDARs govern experience-dependent synaptic plasticity and have been implicated in the pathophysiology of various neuropsychiatric disorders including the cognitive deficits of schizophrenia and certain forms of autism. Certain neurosteroids modulate NMDARs experimentally but their low potency, poor selectivity, and very low brain concentrations make them poor candidates as endogenous ligands or therapeutic agents. Here we show that the major brain-derived cholesterol metabolite 24(S)-hydroxycholesterol (24(S)-HC) is a very potent, direct, and selective positive allosteric modulator of NMDARs with a mechanism that does not overlap that of other allosteric modulators. At submicromolar concentrations 24(S)-HC potentiates NMDAR-mediated EPSCs in rat hippocampal neurons but fails to affect AMPAR or GABAA receptors (GABA(A)Rs)-mediated responses. Cholesterol itself and other naturally occurring oxysterols present in brain do not modulate NMDARs at concentrations ?10 ?M. In hippocampal slices, 24(S)-HC enhances the ability of subthreshold stimuli to induce long-term potentiation (LTP). 24(S)-HC also reverses hippocampal LTP deficits induced by the NMDAR channel blocker ketamine. Finally, we show that synthetic drug-like derivatives of 24(S)-HC, which potently enhance NMDAR-mediated EPSCs and LTP, restore behavioral and cognitive deficits in rodents treated with NMDAR channel blockers. Thus, 24(S)-HC may function as an endogenous modulator of NMDARs acting at a novel oxysterol modulatory site that also represents a target for therapeutic drug development.