Muscarinic cholinergic receptor (M2) plays a crucial role in the development of myopia in mice.
ABSTRACT: Myopia is a huge public health problem worldwide, reaching the highest incidence in Asia. Identification of susceptible genes is crucial for understanding the biological basis of myopia. In this paper, we have identified and characterized a functional myopia-associated gene using a specific mouse-knockout model. Mice lacking the muscarinic cholinergic receptor gene (M2; also known as Chrm2) were less susceptible to lens-induced myopia compared with wild-type mice, which showed significantly increased axial length and vitreous chamber depth when undergoing experimental induction of myopia. The key findings of this present study are that the sclera of M2 mutant mice has higher expression of collagen type I and lower expression of collagen type V than do wild-type mice and mice that are mutant for other muscarinic subtypes, and, therefore, M2 mutant mice were resistant to the development of experimental myopia. Pharmacological blockade of M2 muscarinic receptor proteins retarded myopia progression in the mouse. These results suggest for the first time a role of M2 in growth-related changes in extracellular matrix genes during myopia development in a mammalian model. M2 receptor antagonists might thus provide a targeted therapeutic approach to the management of this refractive error.
Project description:Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) promotes maturation of cholinergic neurons. However, how activity-dependent BDNF expression affects specific cholinergic gene expression remains unclear. This study addressed this question by determining mRNA levels of 22 acetylcholine receptor subunits, the choline transporter (CHT), and the choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) in mice deficient in activity-dependent BDNF via promoter IV (KIV) and control wild-type mice. Quantitative RT-PCR revealed significant reductions in nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha 5 (CHRNA5) in the frontal cortex and hippocampus and M5 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (CHRM5) in the hippocampus, but significant increases in M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (CHRM2) in the frontal cortex of KIV mice compared to wild-type mice. Three-week treatments with fluoxetine, phenelzine, duloxetine, imipramine, or an enriched environment treatment (EET) did not affect the altered expression of these genes except that EET increased CHRNA5 levels only in KIV frontal cortex. EET also increased levels of CHRNA7, CHT, and ChAT, again only in the KIV frontal cortex. The imipramine treatment was most prominent among the four antidepressants; it up-regulated hippocampal CHRM2 and frontal cortex CHRM5 in both genotypes, and frontal cortex CHRNA7 only in KIV mice. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first evidence that BDNF deficiency disturbs expression of CHRNA5, CHRM2, and CHRM5. Our results suggest that promoter IV-BDNF deficiency - which occurs under chronic stress - causes cholinergic dysfunctions via these receptors. EET is effective on CHRNA5, while its compensatory induction of other cholinergic genes or drugs targeting CHRNA5, CHRM2, and CHRM5 may become an alternative strategy to reverse these BDNF-linked cholinergic dysfunctions.
Project description:The nucleotide substitution C797T in the Chrm2 gene causes substitution of leucine for proline at position 266 (P266L) of the CHRM2 protein. Because Chrm2 codes for the type 2 muscarinic receptor, this mutation could influence physiologic and behavioral phenotypes of mice. Chrm2 mRNA was not differentially expressed in 2 brain regions with high cholinergic innervation in a mouse strain that does (BALB/cByJ) or does not (C57BL/6J) have the mutation. In addition, strains of mice with and without the C797T point mutation in Chrm2 did not differ significantly in muscarinic binding properties. Variation across strains was detected in terms of acoustic startle, prepulse inhibition, and the physiologic effects of the muscarinic agonist oxotremorine. However, interstrain differences in these measures did not correlate with the presence of the mutation. Although we were unable to associate a measurable phenotype with the Chrm2 mutation, assessment of the mutation on other genetic backgrounds or in the context of other traits might reveal differential effects. Therefore, despite our negative findings, evaluation of characteristics that involve muscarinic function should be undertaken with caution when comparing mice with different alleles of the Chrm2 gene.
Project description:Reactive oxygen species (ROS) contribute to the pathogenesis of many acute and chronic pulmonary disorders, including bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), a respiratory condition that affects preterm infants. However, the mechanisms of susceptibility to oxidant stress in neonatal lungs are not completely understood. We evaluated the role of genetic background in response to oxidant stress in the neonatal lung by exposing mice from 36 inbred strains to hyperoxia (95% O2) for 72 h after birth. Hyperoxia-induced lung injury was evaluated by using bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) analysis and pathology. Statistically significant interstrain variation was found for BALF inflammatory cells and protein (heritability estimates range: 33.6-55.7%). Genome-wide association mapping using injury phenotypes identified quantitative trait loci (QTLs) on chromosomes 1, 2, 4, 6, and 7. Comparative mapping of the chromosome 6 QTLs identified Chrm2 (cholinergic receptor, muscarinic 2, cardiac) as a candidate susceptibility gene, and mouse strains with a nonsynonymous coding single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in Chrm2 that causes an amino acid substitution (P265L) had significantly reduced hyperoxia-induced inflammation compared to strains without the SNP. Further, hyperoxia-induced lung injury was significantly reduced in neonatal mice with targeted deletion of Chrm2, relative to wild-type controls. This study has important implications for understanding the mechanisms of oxidative lung injury in neonates.
Project description:Muscarinic M1/M4 receptor stimulation can reduce abuse-related effects of cocaine and may represent avenues for treating cocaine addiction. Muscarinic antagonists can mimic and enhance effects of cocaine, including discriminative stimulus (SD) effects, but the receptor subtypes mediating those effects are not known. A better understanding of the complex cocaine/muscarinic interactions is needed to evaluate and develop potential muscarinic-based medications. Here, knockout mice lacking M1, M2, or M4 receptors (M1-/-, M2-/-, M4-/-), as well as control wild-type mice and outbred Swiss-Webster mice, were trained to discriminate 10mg/kg cocaine from saline. Muscarinic receptor antagonists with no subtype selectivity (scopolamine), or preferential affinity at the M1, M2, or M4 subtype (telenzepine, trihexyphenidyl; methoctramine, AQ-RA 741; tropicamide) were tested alone and in combination with cocaine. In intact animals, antagonists with high affinity at M1/M4 receptors partially substituted for cocaine and increased the SD effect of cocaine, while M2-preferring antagonists did not substitute, and reduced the SD effect of cocaine. The cocaine-like effects of scopolamine were absent in M1-/- mice. The cocaine SD attenuating effects of methoctramine were absent in M2-/- mice and almost absent in M1-/- mice. The findings indicate that the cocaine-like SD effects of muscarinic antagonists are primarily mediated through M1 receptors, with a minor contribution of M4 receptors. The data also support our previous findings that stimulation of M1 receptors and M4 receptors can each attenuate the SD effect of cocaine, and show that this can also be achieved by blocking M2 autoreceptors, likely via increased acetylcholine release.
Project description:It is widely appreciated that neurotransmission systems interact in their effects on human cognition, but those interactions have been little studied. We used genetics to investigate pharmacological evidence of synergisms in nicotinic/muscarinic interactions on cognition. We hypothesized that joint influences of nicotinic and muscarinic systems would be reflected in cognitive effects of normal variation in known SNPs in nicotinic (CHRNA4 rs1044396) and muscarinic (CHRM2 rs8191992) receptor genes. Exp. 1 used a task of cued visual search. The slope of the cue size/reaction time function showed a trend level effect of the muscarinic CHRM2 SNP, no effect of the nicotinic CHRNA4 SNP, but a significant interaction between the 2 SNPs. Slopes were steepest in individuals who were both CHRNA4 C/C and CHRM2 T/T homozygotes. To determine the specificity of this synergism, Exp. 2 assessed working memory for 1-3 locations over 3 s and found no significant effects on either SNP. Interpreting these results in light of Sarter's [Briand LA, et al. (2007) Modulators in concert for cognition: Modulator interactions in the prefrontal cortex. Prog Neurobiol 83:69-91] claims of tonic and phasic modes of cholinergic activity, we argue that reorienting attention to the target after invalid cues requires a phasic response, dependent on the nicotinic system, whereas orienting attention to valid cues requires a tonic response, dependent on the muscarinic system. Consistent with that, shifting and scaling after valid cues (tonic) were strongest in CHRNA4 C/C homozygotes who were also CHRM2 T/T homozygotes. This shows synergistic effects within the human cholinergic system.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Various protein expression systems, such as Escherichia coli (E. coli), Saccharomyces cerevisiae (S. cerevisiae), Pichia pastoris (P. pastoris), insect cells and mammalian cell lines, have been developed for the synthesis of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) for structural studies. Recently, the crystal structures of four recombinant human GPCRs, namely ?2 adrenergic receptor, adenosine A2a receptor, CXCR4 and dopamine D3 receptor, were successfully determined using an insect cell expression system. GPCRs expressed in insect cells are believed to undergo mammalian-like posttranscriptional modifications and have similar functional properties than in mammals. Crystal structures of GPCRs have not yet been solved using yeast expression systems. In the present study, P. pastoris and insect cell expression systems for the human muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M2 subtype (CHRM2) were developed and the quantity and quality of CHRM2 synthesized by both expression systems were compared for the application in structural studies.<h4>Results</h4>The ideal conditions for the expression of CHRM2 in P. pastoris were 60 hr at 20°C in a buffer of pH 7.0. The specific activity of the expressed CHRM2 was 28.9 pmol/mg of membrane protein as determined by binding assays using [3H]-quinuclidinyl benzilate (QNB). Although the specific activity of the protein produced by P. pastoris was lower than that of Sf9 insect cells, CHRM2 yield in P. pastoris was 2-fold higher than in Sf9 insect cells because P. pastoris was cultured at high cell density. The dissociation constant (Kd) for QNB in P. pastoris was 101.14 ± 15.07 pM, which was similar to that in Sf9 insect cells (86.23 ± 8.57 pM). There were no differences in the binding affinity of CHRM2 for QNB between P. pastoris and Sf9 insect cells.<h4>Conclusion</h4>Compared to insect cells, P. pastoris is easier to handle, can be grown at lower cost, and can be expressed quicker at a large scale. Yeast, P. pastoris, and insect cells are all effective expression systems for GPCRs. The results of the present study strongly suggested that protein expression in P. pastoris can be applied to the structural and biochemical studies of GPCRs.
Project description:Wenxin Keli (WXKL) is a traditional Chinese medicine drug approved for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases. This study aimed to identify WXKL-targeting genes involved in antiarrhythmic efficacy of WXKL. The Traditional Chinese Medicine Systems Pharmacology (TCMSP) technology platform was used to screen active compounds of WXKL and WXKL-targeting arrhythmia-related genes. A pig model of myocardial ischemia (MI) was established by balloon-expanding the endothelium of the left coronary artery. Pigs were divided into the model group and WXKL group (n?=?6). MI, QT interval, heart rate, and arrhythmia were recorded, and the mRNA expression of target genes in myocardial tissues was detected by PCR. Eleven active ingredients of WXKL and eight WXKL-targeting arrhythmia-related genes were screened. Five pathways were enriched, and an "ingredient-gene-path" network was constructed. WXKL markedly decreased the incidence of arrhythmia in the MI pig model (P < 0.05). The QT interval was significantly shortened, and the heart rate was slowed down in the WXKL group compared with the model group (P < 0.05). In addition, the expression of sodium channel protein type 5 subunit alpha (SCN5A) and beta-2 adrenergic receptor (ADRB2) was downregulated, while muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M2 (CHRM2) was upregulated in the WXKL group (P < 0.05). In conclusion, WXKL may shorten the QT interval and slow down the heart rate by downregulating SCN5A and ADRB2 and upregulating CHRM2 during MI. These findings provide novel insight into molecular mechanisms of WXKL in reducing the incidence of ventricular arrhythmia.
Project description:Ciliary beating of airway epithelial cells drives the removal of mucus and particles from the airways. Mucociliary transport and possibly airway epithelial development are governed by muscarinic acetylcholine receptors but the precise roles of the subtypes involved are unknown. This issue was addressed by determining cilia-driven particle transport, ciliary beat frequency, and the composition and ultrastructural morphology of the tracheal epithelium in M1-M5 muscarinic receptor gene-deficient mice. Knockout of M3 muscarinic receptors prevented an increase in particle transport speed and ciliary beat frequency in response to muscarine. Furthermore, the ATP response after application of muscarine was blunted. Pretreatment with atropine before application of muscarine restored the response to ATP. Additional knockout of the M2 receptor in these mice partially restored the muscarine effect, most likely through the M1 receptor, and normalised the ATP response. M1, M4 and M5 receptor-deficient mice exhibited normal responses to muscarine. None of the investigated mutant mouse strains had any impairment of epithelial cellular structure or composition. In conclusion, M3 receptors stimulate whereas M2 receptors inhibit cilia-driven particle transport. The M1 receptor increases cilia-driven particle transport if the M3 and M2 receptors are missing. None of the receptors is necessary for epithelial development.
Project description:Positive affect (PA) has an important role in resilience against depression and has been shown to increase with mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT). To elucidate the underlying mechanisms of change in PA as well as develop insights that may benefit personalized medicine, the current study examined the contribution of genetic variation to individual differences in change in PA in response to MBCT. Individuals (n=126) with residual depressive symptoms were randomized to either an MBCT group or treatment as usual. PA was assessed using experience sampling methodology (ESM). Single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in genes known to be involved in reward functioning were selected. SNPs in the genes for brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor M2 (CHRM2), the dopamine receptor D4 (DRD4) and the ?1 opioid receptor (OPRM1) significantly moderated the impact of treatment condition over time on PA. Genetic variation in the genes for CHRM2 and OPRM1 specifically had an impact on the level of PA following MBCT. The current study shows that variation in response to MBCT may be contingent on genetic factors associated with the regulation of PA. These findings contribute to our understanding of the processes moderating response to treatment and prediction of treatment outcome.
Project description:Human muscarinic receptor M2 is one of the five subtypes of muscarinic receptors belonging to the family of G-protein-coupled receptors. Muscarinic receptors are targets for multiple neurodegenerative diseases. The challenge has been designing subtype-selective ligands against one of the five muscarinic receptors. We report high-resolution structures of a thermostabilized mutant M2 receptor bound to a subtype-selective antagonist AF-DX 384 and a nonselective antagonist NMS. The thermostabilizing mutation S110R in M2 was predicted using a theoretical strategy previously developed in our group. Comparison of the crystal structures and pharmacological properties of the M2 receptor shows that the Arg in the S110R mutant mimics the stabilizing role of the sodium cation, which is known to allosterically stabilize inactive state(s) of class A GPCRs. Molecular dynamics simulations reveal that tightening of the ligand-residue contacts in M2 receptors compared to M3 receptors leads to subtype selectivity of AF-DX 384.