KCC2 expression supersedes NKCC1 in mature fiber cells in mouse and rabbit lenses.
ABSTRACT: Na-K-Cl cotransporter 1 (NKCC1) and K-Cl cotransporter 2 (KCC2) have fundamental roles in neuron differentiation that are integrated with gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and glutamate receptors, GABA synthesized by GAD25/65/67 encoded by GAD1/GAD2 genes, and GABA transporters (GATs). Cells in the eye lens express at least 13 GABA receptor subunits, ?-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) and N-methyl D-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptors, GAD1/GAD2, GAT1-4 and vGAT, and NKCC1. NKCC1:KCC2 ratios determine the switch in GABA actions from trophic/growth promoting early in development to their classic inhibitory roles in adult neurons. Lens epithelial cells cover the anterior surface and differentiate to elongated fiber cells in the lens interior with comparable morphology and sub-cellular structures as neurons. NKCC1 is expressed before KCC2 in neuron development and increases cell chloride, which stimulates differentiation and process formation. Subsequently, KCC2 increases and extrudes cell chloride linked with maturation. KCC2 has an additional structural moonlighting role interacting with F-actin scaffolding in dendritic spine morphogenesis. We examined KCC2 versus NKCC1 spatial expression in relation to fiber cell developmental status within the lens.Immunofluorescence and immunoblots were used to detect expression in mouse and rabbit lenses.NKCC1 was restricted to peripheral elongating lens fiber cells in young adult mouse and rabbit lenses. Lens KCC2 expression included the major KCC2b neuronal isoform and was detected in interior fiber cells with decreased NKCC1 expression and localized at the membranes. Lens expression of RE-1 silencing transcription factor (REST) regulated KCC2 is consistent with GAD1 and GAD2, several GABA and glutamate receptor subunits, miR-124, and other REST-regulated genes expressed in lenses.NKCC1 in peripheral elongating fiber cells is superseded by KCC2 expression in interior mature fiber cells that also express >20 additional integral GABA biology genes, AMPA/NMDA glutamate receptors, and an array of accessory proteins that together underlie morphogenesis in neurons. The present findings provide further evidence that this fundamental neuronal regulation is extensively conserved in lens and identify additional parallels in the morphogenetic programs that underlie lens fiber cell and neuronal differentiation and contribute to the development of visual acuity.
Project description:GABA signaling molecules are critical for both human brain development and the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. We examined the expression of transcripts derived from three genes related to GABA signaling [GAD1 (GAD67 and GAD25), SLC12A2 (NKCC1), and SLC12A5 (KCC2)] in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and hippocampal formation of a large cohort of nonpsychiatric control human brains (n = 240) across the lifespan (from fetal week 14 to 80 years) and in patients with schizophrenia (n = 30-31), using quantitative RT-PCR. We also examined whether a schizophrenia risk-associated promoter SNP in GAD1 (rs3749034) is related to expression of these transcripts. Our studies revealed that development and maturation of both the PFC and hippocampal formation are characterized by progressive switches in expression from GAD25 to GAD67 and from NKCC1 to KCC2. Previous studies have demonstrated that the former leads to GABA synthesis, and the latter leads to switching from excitatory to inhibitory neurotransmission. In the hippocampal formation, GAD25/GAD67 and NKCC1/KCC2 ratios are increased in patients with schizophrenia, reflecting a potentially immature GABA physiology. Remarkably, GAD25/GAD67 and NKCC1/KCC2 expression ratios are associated with rs3749034 genotype, with risk alleles again predicting a relatively less mature pattern. These findings suggest that abnormalities in GABA signaling critical to brain development contribute to genetic risk for schizophrenia.
Project description:Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a widely conserved signaling molecule that in animals has been adapted as a neurotransmitter. GABA is synthesized from the amino acid glutamate by the action of glutamate decarboxylases (GADs). Two vertebrate genes, GAD1 and GAD2, encode distinct GAD proteins: GAD67 and GAD65, respectively. We have identified a third vertebrate GAD gene, GAD3. This gene is conserved in fishes as well as tetrapods. We analyzed protein sequence, gene structure, synteny, and phylogenetics to identify GAD3 as a homolog of GAD1 and GAD2. Interestingly, we found that GAD3 was lost in the hominid lineage. Because of the importance of GABA as a neurotransmitter, GAD3 may play important roles in vertebrate nervous systems.
Project description:The lateral habenula (LHb) sends complex projections to several areas of the mesopontine tegmentum, the raphe, and the hypothalamus. However, few markers have been available to distinguish subsets of LHb neurons that may serve these pathways. In order to address this complexity, we examined the mouse and rat LHb for neurons that express the GABA biosynthesis enzymes glutamate decarboxylase 1 (GAD1) and GAD2, and the vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT). The mouse LHb contains a population of neurons that express GAD2, while the rat LHb contains discrete populations of neurons that express GAD1 and VGAT. However, we could not detect single neurons in either species that co-express a GABA synthetic enzyme and VGAT, suggesting that these LHb neurons do not use GABA for conventional synaptic transmission. Instead, all of the neuronal types expressing a GABAergic marker in both species showed co-expression of the glutamate transporter VGluT2. Anterograde tract-tracing of the projections of GAD2-expressing LHb neurons in Gad2Cre mice, combined with retrograde tracing from selected downstream nuclei, show that LHb-GAD2 neurons project selectively to the midline structures in the mesopontine tegmentum, including the median raphe (MnR) and nucleus incertus (NI), and only sparsely innervate the hypothalamus, rostromedial tegmental nucleus (RMTg), and ventral tegmental area (VTA). Postsynaptic recording of LHb-GAD2 neuronal input to tegmental neurons confirms that glutamate, not GABA, is the fast neurotransmitter in this circuit. Thus, GAD2 expression can serve as a marker for functional studies of excitatory neurons serving specific LHb output pathways in mice.
Project description:Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is an important metabolite which functions in plant growth, development, and stress responses. However, its role in plant defense and how it is regulated are largely unknown. Here, we report a detailed analysis of GABA induction during the resistance response to Pseudomonas syringae in Arabidopsis thaliana. While searching for the mechanism underlying the pathogen-responsive mitogen-activated protein kinase (MPK)3/MPK6 signaling cascade in plant immunity, we found that activation of MPK3/MPK6 greatly induced GABA biosynthesis, which is dependent on the glutamate decarboxylase genes GAD1 and GAD4. Inoculation with Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato DC3000 (Pst) and Pst-avrRpt2 expressing the avrRpt2 effector gene induced GAD1 and GAD4 gene expression and increased the levels of GABA. Genetic evidence revealed that GAD1, GAD2, and GAD4 play important roles in both GABA biosynthesis and plant resistance in response to Pst-avrRpt2 infection. The gad1/2/4 triple and gad1/2/4/5 quadruple mutants, in which the GABA levels were extremely low, were more susceptible to both Pst and Pst-avrRpt2. Functional loss of MPK3/MPK6, or their upstream MKK4/MKK5, or their downstream substrate WRKY33 suppressed the induction of GAD1 and GAD4 expression after Pst-avrRpt2 treatment. Our findings shed light on both the regulation and role of GABA in the plant immunity to a bacterial pathogen.
Project description:Pain can vary over the estrous cycle as a result of changes in estradiol concentration but the mechanism causing this variation is unclear. Because the thalamus is important in pain control, gene expression in the lateral thalamus (ventral posteromedial, ventral posterolateral, reticular thalamic nuclei) was screened at different phases of the estrous cycle. Gene expression changes in Sprague-Dawley rats were further analyzed by real-time PCR and ELISA and plasma estradiol levels were measured by RIAs at different phases of the estrous cycle. Our results indicated that both the RNA and protein expression of glutamate decarboxylase 1 and 2 (GAD1, GAD2), GABA(A) receptor-associated protein like 1 (GABARAPL1), and vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT) significantly increased in the lateral thalamus when plasma estradiol levels were elevated. Estradiol levels were elevated during the proestrus and estrus phases of the estrous cycle. Estrogen receptor ? (ER?) was observed to be co-localized in thalamic cells and thalamic infusion of an ER? antagonist significantly reduced GAD1 and VGAT transcript. GAD1, GAD2, GABARAPL1, and VGAT have been shown to effect neuronal responses suggesting that attenuation of pain during the estrous cycle can be dependent, in part, through estradiol induced changes in thalamic gene expression.
Project description:The thalamus is important for sensory integration with the ventrobasal thalamus (VB) as relay controlled by GABAergic projections from the nucleus reticularis thalami (NRT). Depending on the [Cl-]i primarily set by cation-chloride-cotransporters, GABA is inhibitory or excitatory. There is evidence that VB and NRT differ in terms of GABA action, with classical hyperpolarization in VB due to the expression of the Cl- extruder KCC2 and depolarizing/excitatory GABA action in the NRT, where KCC2 expression is low and Cl- accumulation by the Cl- inward transporter NKCC1 has been postulated. However, data on NKCC1 expression and functional analysis of both transporters are missing. We show that KCC2-mediated Cl- extrusion set the [Cl-]i in VB, while NKCC1 did not contribute substantially to Cl- accumulation and depolarizing GABA action in the NRT. The finding that NKCC1 did not play a major role in NRT neurons is of high relevance for ongoing studies on the therapeutic use of NKCC1 inhibitors trying to compensate for a disease-induced up-regulation of NKCC1 that has been described for various brain regions and disease states like epilepsy and chronic pain. These data suggest that NKCC1 inhibitors might have no major effect on healthy NRT neurons due to limited NKCC1 function.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The relation of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) to alcohol dependence (AD) has been widely studied. Several previous studies suggest that GABA may be involved in alcohol withdrawal, tolerance, and the symptoms that form an AD diagnosis. The genes coding for glutamate decarboxylase (GAD), the rate-limiting enzyme in GABA synthesis, are of potential interest for their association to ethanol consumption and AD. There are two isoforms of GAD, GAD1 and GAD2, which were reported to be associated with AD in males of Han Taiwanese (GAD1) and Russian (GAD2) ancestry. The present study examined the association of the two GAD isoforms with AD and relevant alcohol-related traits in the Irish Affected Sib Pair Study of Alcohol Dependence [Prescott, C.A., Sullivan, P.F., Myers, J.M., Patterson, D.G., Devitt, M., Halberstadt, L.J., Walsh, D., Kendler, K.S., 2005. The Irish Affected Sib Pair Study of Alcohol Dependence: study methodology and validation of diagnosis by interview and family history. Alcohol.-Clin. Exp. Res. 29 (3) 417-429]. METHODS:Participants were recruited in Ireland, including 575 independent cases who met DSM-IV AD criteria and 530 controls, screened for heavy drinking. We first conducted case-control analyses of the GAD genes with AD and, within the cases, examined associations with age at onset of AD, withdrawal symptoms, and two quantitative measures: initial sensitivity and tolerance (based on scales from the Self-Rating of the Effects of Ethanol) [Schuckit, M.A., Smith, T.L., Tipp, J.E., 1997. The self-rating of the effects of alcohol (SRE) form as a retrospective measure of the risk for alcoholism. Addiction 92, 979-988]. A total of 29 SNPs were genotyped for GAD1 and GAD2 using the Illumina GoldenGate protocols. Statistical procedures were implemented to control for false discovery rates (FDR). RESULTS:Nine of 29 markers with minor allele frequencies less than 0.01 were removed from standard analysis; the remaining 20 markers were all in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. Three markers in the intronic regions of GAD1 were associated with initial sensitivity to alcohol (P=0.002); the associations remained significant after a FDR based correction for multiple testing. In addition, one marker located 3kb upstream of GAD1 exhibited association with age at onset of AD (P=0.0001). Gender specific effects were observed in results of both single marker and haplotype analyses. CONCLUSION:We found no evidence for the association of GAD genes with AD but significant association of GAD1 with initial sensitivity and age at onset of AD. Our findings suggest that the underlying pathophysiology regulated by genes like GAD1 may be more directly related to the component processes that form AD than to the clinical disorder.
Project description:Genetic variation and early adverse environmental events work together to increase risk for schizophrenia. ?-aminobutyric acid (GABA), the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in adult mammalian brain, plays a major role in normal brain development, and has been strongly implicated in the pathobiology of schizophrenia. GABA synthesis is controlled by two glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) genes, GAD1 and GAD2, both of which produce a number of alternative transcripts. Genetic variants in the GAD1 gene are associated with increased risk for schizophrenia, and reduced expression of its major transcript in the human dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). No consistent changes in GAD2 expression have been found in brains from patients with schizophrenia. In this work, with the use of RNA sequencing and PCR technologies, we confirmed and tracked the expression of an alternative truncated transcript of GAD2 (ENST00000428517) in human control DLPFC homogenates across lifespan besides the well-known full length transcript of GAD2. In addition, using quantitative RT-PCR, expression of GAD2 full length and truncated transcripts were measured in the DLPFC of patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression. The expression of GAD2 full length transcript is decreased in the DLPFC of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder patients, while GAD2 truncated transcript is increased in bipolar disorder patients but decreased in schizophrenia patients. Moreover, the patients with schizophrenia with completed suicide or positive nicotine exposure showed significantly higher expression of GAD2 full length transcript. Alternative transcripts of GAD2 may be important in the growth and development of GABA-synthesizing neurons as well as abnormal GABA signaling in the DLPFC of patients with schizophrenia and affective disorders.
Project description:Huntington's disease (HD) is classically characterized as a movement disorder, however cognitive impairments precede the motor symptoms by ?15 y. Based on proteomic and bioinformatic data linking the Huntingtin protein (Htt) and KCC2, which is required for hyperpolarizing GABAergic inhibition, and the important role of inhibition in learning and memory, we hypothesized that aberrant KCC2 function contributes to the hippocampal-associated learning and memory deficits in HD. We discovered that Htt and KCC2 interact in the hippocampi of wild-type and R6/2-HD mice, with a decrease in KCC2 expression in the hippocampus of R6/2 and YAC128 mice. The reduced expression of the Cl--extruding cotransporter KCC2 is accompanied by an increase in the Cl--importing cotransporter NKCC1, which together result in excitatory GABA in the hippocampi of HD mice. NKCC1 inhibition by the FDA-approved NKCC1 inhibitor bumetanide abolished the excitatory action of GABA and rescued the performance of R6/2 mice on hippocampal-associated behavioral tests.
Project description:Dramatic structural and functional remodeling occurs in the postpartum brain for the establishment of maternal care, which is essential for the growth and development of young offspring. Glutamate and GABA signaling are critically important in modulating multiple behavioral performances. Large scale signaling changes occur in the postpartum brain, but it is still not clear to what extent the neurotransmitters glutamate and GABA change and whether the ratio of glutamate/GABA remains balanced. In this study, we examined the glutamate/GABA-glutamine cycle in the lateral septum (LS) of postpartum female mice. In postpartum females (relative to virgins), tissue levels of glutamate and GABA were elevated in LS and increased mRNA was found for the respective enzymes producing glutamate and GABA, glutaminase (Gls) and glutamate decarboxylase 1 and 2 (Gad1 and Gad2). The common precursor, glutamine, was elevated as was the enzyme that produces it, glutamate-ammonia ligase (Glul). Additionally, glutamate, GABA, and glutamine were positively correlated and the glutamate/GABA ratio was almost identical in the postpartum and virgin females. Collectively, these findings indicate that glutamate and GABA signaling are increased and that the ratio of glutamate/GABA is well balanced in the maternal LS. The postpartum brain may provide a useful model system for understanding how glutamate and GABA are linked despite large signaling changes. Given that some mental health disorders, including depression and schizophrenia display dysregulated glutamate/GABA ratio, and there is increased vulnerability to mental disorders in mothers, it is possible that these postpartum disorders emerge when glutamate and GABA changes are not properly coordinated.