Unbiased discovery of glypican as a receptor for LRRTM4 in regulating excitatory synapse development.
ABSTRACT: Leucine-rich repeat (LRR) proteins have recently been identified as important regulators of synapse development and function, but for many LRR proteins the ligand-receptor interactions are not known. Here we identify the heparan sulfate (HS) proteoglycan glypican as a receptor for LRRTM4 using an unbiased proteomics-based approach. Glypican binds LRRTM4, but not LRRTM2, in an HS-dependent manner. Glypican 4 (GPC4) and LRRTM4 localize to the pre- and postsynaptic membranes of excitatory synapses, respectively. Consistent with a trans-synaptic interaction, LRRTM4 triggers GPC4 clustering in contacting axons and GPC4 induces clustering of LRRTM4 in contacting dendrites in an HS-dependent manner. LRRTM4 positively regulates excitatory synapse development in cultured neurons and in vivo, and the synaptogenic activity of LRRTM4 requires the presence of HS on the neuronal surface. Our results identify glypican as an LRRTM4 receptor and indicate that a trans-synaptic glypican-LRRTM4 interaction regulates excitatory synapse development.
Project description:Leukocyte common antigen-related receptor protein tyrosine phosphatases--comprising LAR, PTP?, and PTP?--are synaptic adhesion molecules that organize synapse development. Here, we identify glypican 4 (GPC-4) as a ligand for PTP?. GPC-4 showed strong (nanomolar) affinity and heparan sulfate (HS)-dependent interaction with the Ig domains of PTP?. PTP? bound only to proteolytically cleaved GPC-4 and formed additional complex with leucine-rich repeat transmembrane protein 4 (LRRTM4) in rat brains. Moreover, single knockdown (KD) of PTP?, but not LAR, in cultured neurons significantly reduced the synaptogenic activity of LRRTM4, a postsynaptic ligand of GPC-4, in heterologous synapse-formation assays. Finally, PTP? KD dramatically decreased both the frequency and amplitude of excitatory synaptic transmission. This effect was reversed by wild-type PTP?, but not by a HS-binding-defective PTP? mutant. Our results collectively suggest that presynaptic PTP?, together with GPC-4, acts in a HS-dependent manner to maintain excitatory synapse development and function.
Project description:We identify the leucine-rich repeat transmembrane protein LRRTM2 as a key regulator of excitatory synapse development and function. LRRTM2 localizes to excitatory synapses in transfected hippocampal neurons, and shRNA-mediated knockdown of LRRTM2 leads to a decrease in excitatory synapses without affecting inhibitory synapses. LRRTM2 interacts with PSD-95 and regulates surface expression of AMPA receptors, and lentivirus-mediated knockdown of LRRTM2 in vivo decreases the strength of evoked excitatory synaptic currents. Structure-function studies indicate that LRRTM2 induces presynaptic differentiation via the extracellular LRR domain. We identify Neurexin1 as a receptor for LRRTM2 based on affinity chromatography. LRRTM2 binds to both Neurexin 1alpha and Neurexin 1beta, and shRNA-mediated knockdown of Neurexin1 abrogates LRRTM2-induced presynaptic differentiation. These observations indicate that an LRRTM2-Neurexin1 interaction plays a critical role in regulating excitatory synapse development.
Project description:In the developing central nervous system (CNS), the control of synapse number and function is critical to the formation of neural circuits. We previously demonstrated that astrocyte-secreted factors powerfully induce the formation of functional excitatory synapses between CNS neurons. Astrocyte-secreted thrombospondins induce the formation of structural synapses, but these synapses are postsynaptically silent. Here we use biochemical fractionation of astrocyte-conditioned medium to identify glypican 4 (Gpc4) and glypican 6 (Gpc6) as astrocyte-secreted signals sufficient to induce functional synapses between purified retinal ganglion cell neurons, and show that depletion of these molecules from astrocyte-conditioned medium significantly reduces its ability to induce postsynaptic activity. Application of Gpc4 to purified neurons is sufficient to increase the frequency and amplitude of glutamatergic synaptic events. This is achieved by increasing the surface level and clustering, but not overall cellular protein level, of the GluA1 subunit of the AMPA (?-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid) glutamate receptor (AMPAR). Gpc4 and Gpc6 are expressed by astrocytes in vivo in the developing CNS, with Gpc4 expression enriched in the hippocampus and Gpc6 enriched in the cerebellum. Finally, we demonstrate that Gpc4-deficient mice have defective synapse formation, with decreased amplitude of excitatory synaptic currents in the developing hippocampus and reduced recruitment of AMPARs to synapses. These data identify glypicans as a family of novel astrocyte-derived molecules that are necessary and sufficient to promote glutamate receptor clustering and receptivity and to induce the formation of postsynaptically functioning CNS synapses.
Project description:Pyramidal neuron dendrites integrate synaptic input from multiple partners. Different inputs converging on the same dendrite have distinct structural and functional features, but the molecular mechanisms organizing input-specific properties are poorly understood. We identify the orphan receptor GPR158 as a binding partner for the heparan sulfate proteoglycan (HSPG) glypican 4 (GPC4). GPC4 is enriched on hippocampal granule cell axons (mossy fibers), whereas postsynaptic GPR158 is restricted to the proximal segment of CA3 apical dendrites receiving mossy fiber input. GPR158-induced presynaptic differentiation in contacting axons requires cell-surface GPC4 and the co-receptor LAR. Loss of GPR158 increases mossy fiber synapse density but disrupts bouton morphology, impairs ultrastructural organization of active zone and postsynaptic density, and reduces synaptic strength of this connection, while adjacent inputs on the same dendrite are unaffected. Our work identifies an input-specific HSPG-GPR158 interaction that selectively organizes synaptic architecture and function of developing mossy fiber-CA3 synapses in the hippocampus.
Project description:Leucine-rich repeat transmembrane (LRRTM) proteins are synaptic cell adhesion molecules that influence synapse formation and function. They are genetically associated with neuropsychiatric disorders, and via their synaptic actions likely regulate the establishment and function of neural circuits in the mammalian brain. Here, we take advantage of the generation of a <i>LRRTM1</i> and <i>LRRTM2</i> double conditional knockout mouse (<i>LRRTM1,2</i> cKO) to examine the role of LRRTM1,2 at mature excitatory synapses in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons. Genetic deletion of <i>LRRTM1,2</i> in vivo in CA1 neurons using Cre recombinase-expressing lentiviruses dramatically impaired long-term potentiation (LTP), an impairment that was rescued by simultaneous expression of LRRTM2, but not LRRTM4. Mutation or deletion of the intracellular tail of LRRTM2 did not affect its ability to rescue LTP, while point mutations designed to impair its binding to presynaptic neurexins prevented rescue of LTP. In contrast to previous work using shRNA-mediated knockdown of LRRTM1,2, KO of these proteins at mature synapses also caused a decrease in AMPA receptor-mediated, but not NMDA receptor-mediated, synaptic transmission and had no detectable effect on presynaptic function. Imaging of recombinant photoactivatable AMPA receptor subunit GluA1 in the dendritic spines of cultured neurons revealed that it was less stable in the absence of LRRTM1,2. These results illustrate the advantages of conditional genetic deletion experiments for elucidating the function of endogenous synaptic proteins and suggest that LRRTM1,2 proteins help stabilize synaptic AMPA receptors at mature spines during basal synaptic transmission and LTP.
Project description:Perturbations of cell surface synapse-organizing proteins, particularly ?-neurexins, contribute to neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders. From an unbiased screen, we identify calsyntenin-3 (alcadein-?) as a synapse-organizing protein unique in binding and recruiting ?-neurexins, but not ?-neurexins. Calsyntenin-3 is present in many pyramidal neurons throughout cortex and hippocampus but is most highly expressed in interneurons. The transmembrane form of calsyntenin-3 can trigger excitatory and inhibitory presynapse differentiation in contacting axons. However, calsyntenin-3-shed ectodomain, which represents about half the calsyntenin-3 pool in brain, suppresses the ability of multiple ?-neurexin partners including neuroligin 2 and LRRTM2 to induce presynapse differentiation. Clstn3?/? mice show reductions in excitatory and inhibitory synapse density by confocal and electron microscopy and corresponding deficits in synaptic transmission. These results identify calsyntenin-3 as an ?-neurexin-specific binding partner required for normal functional GABAergic and glutamatergic synapse development.
Project description:Synaptic cell adhesion molecules, including the neurexin ligands, neuroligins (NLs) and leucine-rich repeat transmembrane proteins (LRRTMs), are thought to organize synapse assembly and specify synapse function. To test the synaptic role of these molecules in vivo, we performed lentivirally mediated knockdown of NL3, LRRTM1, and LRRTM2 in CA1 pyramidal cells of WT and NL1 KO mice at postnatal day (P)0 (when synapses are forming) and P21 (when synapses are largely mature). P0 knockdown of NL3 in WT or NL1 KO neurons did not affect excitatory synaptic transmission, whereas P0 knockdown of LRRTM1 and LRRTM2 selectively reduced AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic currents. P0 triple knockdown of NL3 and both LRRTMs in NL1 KO mice yielded greater reductions in AMPA and NMDA receptor-mediated currents, suggesting functional redundancy between NLs and LRRTMs during early synapse development. In contrast, P21 knockdown of LRRTMs did not alter excitatory transmission, whereas NL manipulations supported a role for NL1 in maintaining NMDA receptor-mediated transmission. These results show that neurexin ligands in vivo form a dynamic synaptic cell adhesion network, with compensation between NLs and LRRTMs during early synapse development and functional divergence upon synapse maturation.
Project description:Leucine-rich repeat transmembrane proteins (LRRTMs) are synaptic cell adhesion molecules that trigger excitatory synapse assembly in cultured neurons and influence synaptic function in vivo, but their role in synaptic plasticity is unknown. shRNA-mediated knockdown (KD) of LRRTM1 and LRRTM2 in vivo in CA1 pyramidal neurons of newborn mice blocked long-term potentiation (LTP) in acute hippocampal slices. Molecular replacement experiments revealed that the LRRTM2 extracellular domain is sufficient for LTP, probably because it mediates binding to neurexins (Nrxs). Examination of surface expression of endogenous AMPA receptors (AMPARs) in cultured neurons suggests that LRRTMs maintain newly delivered AMPARs at synapses after LTP induction. LRRTMs are also required for LTP of mature synapses on adult CA1 pyramidal neurons, indicating that the block of LTP in neonatal synapses by LRRTM1 and LRRTM2 KD is not due to impairment of synapse maturation.
Project description:Recently, leucine-rich repeat transmembrane proteins (LRRTMs) were found to be synaptic cell-adhesion molecules that, when expressed in nonneuronal cells, induce presynaptic differentiation in contacting axons. We now demonstrate that LRRTM2 induces only excitatory synapses, and that it also acts to induce synapses in transfected neurons similarly to neuroligin-1. Using affinity chromatography, we identified alpha- and beta-neurexins as LRRTM2 ligands, again rendering LRRTM2 similar to neuroligin-1. However, whereas neuroligins bind neurexins containing or lacking an insert in splice site #4, LRRTM2 only binds neurexins lacking an insert in splice site #4. Binding of neurexins to LRRTM2 can produce cell-adhesion junctions, consistent with a trans-interaction regulated by neurexin alternative splicing, and recombinant neurexin-1beta blocks LRRTM2's ability to promote presynaptic differentiation. Thus, our data suggest that two unrelated postsynaptic cell-adhesion molecules, LRRTMs and neuroligins, unexpectedly bind to neurexins as the same presynaptic receptor, but that their binding is subject to distinct regulatory mechanisms.
Project description:Leucine-rich repeat transmembrane neuronal proteins (LRRTMs) form in mammals a family of four postsynaptic adhesion proteins, which have been shown to bind neurexins and heparan sulphate proteoglycan (HSPG) glypican on the presynaptic side. Mutations in the genes encoding LRRTMs and neurexins are implicated in human cognitive disorders such as schizophrenia and autism. Our analysis shows that in most jawed vertebrates, lrrtm1, lrrtm2, and lrrtm3 genes are nested on opposite strands of large conserved intron of ?-catenin genes ctnna2, ctnna1, and ctnna3, respectively. No lrrtm genes could be found in tunicates or lancelets, while two lrrtm genes are found in the lamprey genome, one of which is adjacent to a single ctnna homolog. Based on similar highly positive net charge of lamprey LRRTMs and the HSPG-binding LRRTM3 and LRRTM4 proteins, we speculate that the ancestral LRRTM might have bound HSPG before acquiring neurexins as binding partners. Our model suggests that lrrtm gene translocated into the large ctnna intron in early vertebrates, and that subsequent duplications resulted in three lrrtm/ctnna gene pairs present in most jawed vertebrates. However, we detected three prominent exceptions: (1) the lrrtm3/ctnna3 gene structure is absent in the ray-finned fish genomes, (2) the genomes of clawed frogs contain ctnna1 but lack the corresponding nested (lrrtm2) gene, and (3) contain lrrtm3 gene in the syntenic position but lack the corresponding host (ctnna3) gene. We identified several other protein-coding nested gene structures of which either the host or the nested gene has presumably been lost in the frog or chicken lineages. Interestingly, majority of these nested genes comprise LRR domains.