Glutamate receptor ?2 is essential for input pathway-dependent regulation of synaptic AMPAR contents in cerebellar Purkinje cells.
ABSTRACT: The number of synaptic AMPA receptors (AMPARs) is the major determinant of synaptic strength and is differently regulated in input pathway-dependent and target cell type-dependent manners. In cerebellar Purkinje cells (PCs), the density of synaptic AMPARs is approximately five times lower at parallel fiber (PF) synapses than at climbing fiber (CF) synapses. However, molecular mechanisms underlying this biased synaptic distribution remain unclear. As a candidate molecule, we focused on glutamate receptor ?2 (GluR?2 or GluD2), which is known to be efficiently trafficked to and selectively expressed at PF synapses in PCs. We applied postembedding immunogold electron microscopy to GluR?2 knock-out (KO) and control mice, and measured labeling density for GluA1-4 at three excitatory synapses in the cerebellar molecular layer. In both control and GluR?2-KO mice, GluA1-3 were localized at PF and CF synapses in PCs, while GluA2-4 were at PF synapses in interneurons. In control mice, labeling density for each of GluA1-3 was four to six times lower at PF-PC synapses than at CF-PC synapses. In GluR?2-KO mice, however, their labeling density displayed a three- to fivefold increase at PF synapses, but not at CF synapses, thus effectively eliminating input pathway-dependent disparity between the two PC synapses. Furthermore, we found an unexpected twofold increase in labeling density for GluA2 and GluA3, but not GluA4, at PF-interneuron synapses, where we identified low but significant expression of GluR?2. These results suggest that GluR?2 is involved in a common mechanism that restricts the number of synaptic AMPARs at PF synapses in PCs and molecular layer interneurons.
Project description:In Purkinje cells (PCs) of the cerebellum, a single "winner" climbing fiber (CF) monopolizes proximal dendrites, whereas hundreds of thousands of parallel fibers (PFs) innervate distal dendrites, and both CF and PF inputs innervate a narrow intermediate domain. It is unclear how this segregated CF and PF innervation is established on PC dendrites. Through reconstruction of dendritic innervation by serial electron microscopy, we show that from postnatal day 9-15 in mice, both CF and PF innervation territories vigorously expand because of an enlargement of the region of overlapping innervation. From postnatal day 15 onwards, segregation of these territories occurs with robust shortening of the overlapping proximal region. Thus, innervation territories by the heterologous inputs are refined during the early postnatal period. Intriguingly, this transition is arrested in mutant mice lacking the type 1 metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR1) or protein kinase C? (PKC?), resulting in the persistence of an abnormally expanded overlapping region. This arrested territory refinement is rescued by lentivirus-mediated expression of mGluR1? into mGluR1-deficient PCs. At the proximal dendrite of rescued PCs, PF synapses are eliminated and free spines emerge instead, whereas the number and density of CF synapses are unchanged. Because the mGluR1-PKC? signaling pathway is also essential for the late-phase of CF synapse elimination, this signaling pathway promotes the two key features of excitatory synaptic wiring in PCs, namely CF monoinnervation by eliminating redundant CF synapses from the soma, and segregated territories of CF and PF innervation by eliminating competing PF synapses from proximal dendrites.
Project description:Cerebellar motor learning is suggested to be caused by long-term plasticity of excitatory parallel fiber-Purkinje cell (PF-PC) synapses associated with changes in the number of synaptic AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs). However, whether the AMPARs decrease or increase in individual PF-PC synapses occurs in physiological motor learning and accounts for memory that lasts over days remains elusive. We combined quantitative SDS-digested freeze-fracture replica labeling for AMPAR and physical dissector electron microscopy with a simple model of cerebellar motor learning, adaptation of horizontal optokinetic response (HOKR) in mouse. After 1-h training of HOKR, short-term adaptation (STA) was accompanied with transient decrease in AMPARs by 28% in target PF-PC synapses. STA was well correlated with AMPAR decrease in individual animals and both STA and AMPAR decrease recovered to basal levels within 24 h. Surprisingly, long-term adaptation (LTA) after five consecutive daily trainings of 1-h HOKR did not alter the number of AMPARs in PF-PC synapses but caused gradual and persistent synapse elimination by 45%, with corresponding PC spine loss by the fifth training day. Furthermore, recovery of LTA after 2 wk was well correlated with increase of PF-PC synapses to the control level. Our findings indicate that the AMPARs decrease in PF-PC synapses and the elimination of these synapses are in vivo engrams in short- and long-term motor learning, respectively, showing a unique type of synaptic plasticity that may contribute to memory consolidation.
Project description:The climbing fiber (CF) neurotransmitter not only excites the postsynaptic Purkinje cell (PC) but also suppresses GABA release from inhibitory interneurons converging onto the same PC depending on AMPA-type glutamate receptor (AMPAR) activation. Although the CF-/AMPAR-mediated inhibition of GABA release provides a likely mechanism boosting the CF input-derived excitation, how the CF transmitter reaches target AMPARs to elicit this action remains unknown. Here, we report that the CF transmitter diffused from its release sites directly targets GluR2/GluR3 AMPARs on interneuron terminals to inhibit GABA release. A weak GluR3-AMPAR agonist, bromohomoibotenic acid, produced excitatory currents in the postsynaptic PCs without presynaptic inhibitory effect on GABAergic transmission. Conversely, a specific inhibitor of the GluR2-lacking/Ca2+-permeable AMPARs, philanthotoxin-433, did not affect the CF-induced inhibition but suppressed AMPAR-mediated currents in Bergmann glia. A low-affinity GluR antagonist, gamma-D-glutamylglycine, or retardation of neurotransmitter diffusion by dextran reduced the inhibitory action of CF-stimulation, whereas blockade of glutamate transporters enhanced the CF-induced inhibition. The results suggest that the CF transmitter released after repeated stimulation overwhelms local glutamate uptake and thereby diffuses from the release site to reach GluR2/GluR3 AMPARs on nearby interneuron terminals. Double immunostaining showed that GluR2/3 subunits and glutamate decarboxylase or synaptophysin are colocalized at the perisomatic GABAergic processes surrounding PCs. Finally, electron microscopy detected specific immunoreactivity for GluR2/3 at the presynaptic terminals of symmetric axosomatic synapses on the PC. These findings demonstrate that the CF transmitter directly inhibits GABA release from interneurons to the PC, relying on extrasynaptic diffusion and local heterogeneity in AMPAR subunit compositions.
Project description:Ca2+-permeable AMPA-type glutamate receptors (CP-AMPARs) containing GluA1 but lacking GluA2 subunits contribute to multiple forms of synaptic plasticity, including long-term potentiation (LTP), but mechanisms regulating CP-AMPARs are poorly understood. A-kinase anchoring protein (AKAP) 150 scaffolds kinases and phosphatases to regulate GluA1 phosphorylation and trafficking, and trafficking of AKAP150 itself is modulated by palmitoylation on two Cys residues. Here, we developed a palmitoylation-deficient knockin mouse to show that AKAP150 palmitoylation regulates CP-AMPAR incorporation at hippocampal synapses. Using biochemical, super-resolution imaging, and electrophysiological approaches, we found that palmitoylation promotes AKAP150 localization to recycling endosomes and the postsynaptic density (PSD) to limit CP-AMPAR basal synaptic incorporation. In addition, we found that AKAP150 palmitoylation is required for LTP induced by weaker stimulation that recruits CP-AMPARs to synapses but not stronger stimulation that recruits GluA2-containing AMPARs. Thus, AKAP150 palmitoylation controls its subcellular localization to maintain proper basal and activity-dependent regulation of synaptic AMPAR subunit composition.
Project description:Astrocytes regulate synaptic transmission through controlling neurotransmitter concentrations around synapses. Little is known, however, about their roles in neural circuit development. Here we report that Bergmann glia (BG), specialized cerebellar astrocytes that thoroughly enwrap Purkinje cells (PCs), are essential for synaptic organization in PCs through the action of the l-glutamate/l-aspartate transporter (GLAST). In GLAST-knockout mice, dendritic innervation by the main ascending climbing fiber (CF) branch was significantly weakened, whereas the transverse branch, which is thin and nonsynaptogenic in control mice, was transformed into thick and synaptogenic branches. Both types of CF branches frequently produced aberrant wiring to proximal and distal dendrites, causing multiple CF-PC innervation. Our electrophysiological analysis revealed that slow and small CF-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were recorded from almost all PCs in GLAST-knockout mice. These atypical CF-EPSCs were far more numerous and had significantly faster 10-90% rise time than those elicited by glutamate spillover under pharmacological blockade of glial glutamate transporters. Innervation by parallel fibers (PFs) was also affected. PF synapses were robustly increased in the entire dendritic trees, leading to impaired segregation of CF and PF territories. Furthermore, lamellate BG processes were retracted from PC dendrites and synapses, leading to the exposure of these neuronal elements to the extracellular milieus. These synaptic and glial phenotypes were reproduced in wild-type mice after functional blockade of glial glutamate transporters. These findings highlight that glutamate transporter function by GLAST on BG plays important roles in development and maintenance of proper synaptic wiring and wrapping in PCs.
Project description:The accumulation of AMPA receptors (AMPARs) at synapses is essential for excitatory synaptic transmission. However, the mechanisms underlying synaptic targeting of AMPARs remain elusive. We have now used a molecular replacement approach on an AMPAR-null background to investigate the targeting mechanisms necessary for regulating AMPAR trafficking in the hippocampus. Although there is an extensive literature on the role of the GluA1 C-tail in AMPAR trafficking, there is no effect of overexpressing the C-tail on basal transmission. Instead, we found that the first intracellular loop domain (Loop1) of GluA1, a previously overlooked region within AMPARs, is critical for receptor targeting to synapses, but not for delivery of receptors to the plasma membrane. We also identified a CaMKII phosphorylation site (S567) in the GluA1 Loop1, which is phosphorylated in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, we show that S567 is a key residue that regulates Loop1-mediated AMPAR trafficking. Thus, our study reveals a unique mechanism for targeting AMPARs to synapses to mediate synaptic transmission.
Project description:UNLABELLED:The number of AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs) at synapses is the major determinant of synaptic strength and varies from synapse to synapse. To clarify the underlying molecular mechanisms, the density of AMPARs, PSD-95, and transmembrane AMPAR regulatory proteins (TARPs) were compared at Schaffer collateral/commissural (SCC) synapses in the adult mouse hippocampal CA1 by quantitative immunogold electron microscopy using serial sections. We examined four types of SCC synapses: perforated and nonperforated synapses on pyramidal cells and axodendritic synapses on parvalbumin-positive (PV synapse) and pravalbumin-negative interneurons (non-PV synapse). SCC synapses were categorized into those expressing high-density (perforated and PV synapses) or low-density (nonperforated and non-PV synapses) AMPARs. Although the density of PSD-95 labeling was fairly constant, the density and composition of TARP isoforms was highly variable depending on the synapse type. Of the three TARPs expressed in hippocampal neurons, the disparity in TARP ?-2 labeling was closely related to that of AMPAR labeling. Importantly, AMPAR density was significantly reduced at perforated and PV synapses in TARP ?-2-knock-out (KO) mice, resulting in a virtual loss of AMPAR disparity among SCC synapses. In comparison, TARP ?-8 was the only TARP expressed at nonperforated synapses, where AMPAR labeling further decreased to a background level in TARP ?-8-KO mice. These results show that synaptic inclusion of TARP ?-2 potently increases AMPAR expression and transforms low-density synapses into high-density ones, whereas TARP ?-8 is essential for low-density or basal expression of AMPARs at nonperforated synapses. Therefore, these TARPs are critically involved in AMPAR density control at SCC synapses. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT:Although converging evidence implicates the importance of transmembrane AMPA-type glutamate receptor (AMPAR) regulatory proteins (TARPs) in AMPAR stabilization during basal transmission and synaptic plasticity, how they control large disparities in AMPAR numbers or densities across central synapses remains largely unknown. We compared the density of AMPARs with that of TARPs among four types of Schaffer collateral/commissural (SCC) hippocampal synapses in wild-type and TARP-knock-out mice. We show that the density of AMPARs correlates with that of TARP ?-2 across SCC synapses and its high expression is linked to high-density AMPAR expression at perforated type of pyramidal cell synapses and synapses on parvalbumin-positive interneurons. In comparison, TARP ?-8 is the only TARP expressed at nonperforated type of pyramidal cell synapses, playing an essential role in low-density or basal AMPAR expression.
Project description:The precise subunit composition of synaptic ionotropic receptors in the brain is poorly understood. This information is of particular importance with regard to AMPA-type glutamate receptors, the multimeric complexes assembled from GluA1-A4 subunits, as the trafficking of these receptors into and out of synapses is proposed to depend upon the subunit composition of the receptor. We report a molecular quantification of synaptic AMPA receptors (AMPARs) by employing a single-cell genetic approach coupled with electrophysiology in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons. In contrast to prevailing views, we find that GluA1A2 heteromers are the dominant AMPARs at CA1 cell synapses (approximately 80%). In cells lacking GluA1, -A2, and -A3, synapses are devoid of AMPARs, yet synaptic NMDA receptors (NMDARs) and dendritic morphology remain unchanged. These data demonstrate a functional dissociation of AMPARs from trafficking of NMDARs and neuronal morphogenesis. This study provides a functional quantification of the subunit composition of AMPARs in the CNS and suggests novel roles for AMPAR subunits in receptor trafficking.
Project description:In the cerebellum, Delphilin is expressed selectively in Purkinje cells (PCs) and is localized exclusively at parallel fiber (PF) synapses, where it interacts with glutamate receptor (GluR) delta2 that is essential for long-term depression (LTD), motor learning and cerebellar wiring. Delphilin ablation exerted little effect on the synaptic localization of GluRdelta2. There were no detectable abnormalities in cerebellar histology, PC cytology and PC synapse formation in contrast to GluRdelta2 mutant mice. However, LTD induction was facilitated at PF-PC synapses in Delphilin mutant mice. Intracellular Ca(2+) required for the induction of LTD appeared to be reduced in the mutant mice, while Ca(2+) influx through voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels and metabotropic GluR1-mediated slow synaptic response were similar between wild-type and mutant mice. We further showed that the gain-increase adaptation of the optokinetic response (OKR) was enhanced in the mutant mice. These findings are compatible with the idea that LTD induction at PF-PC synapses is a crucial rate-limiting step in OKR gain-increase adaptation, a simple form of motor learning. As exemplified in this study, enhancing synaptic plasticity at a specific synaptic site of a neural network is a useful approach to understanding the roles of multiple plasticity mechanisms at various cerebellar synapses in motor control and learning.
Project description:Excitatory synaptic transmission is mediated by AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs). In CA1 pyramidal neurons of the hippocampus two types of AMPARs predominate: those that contain subunits GluA1 and GluA2 (GluA1/2), and those that contain GluA2 and GluA3 (GluA2/3). Whereas subunits GluA1 and GluA2 have been extensively studied, the contribution of GluA3 to synapse physiology has remained unclear. Here we show in mice that GluA2/3s are in a low-conductance state under basal conditions, and although present at synapses they contribute little to synaptic currents. When intracellular cyclic AMP (cAMP) levels rise, GluA2/3 channels shift to a high-conductance state, leading to synaptic potentiation. This cAMP-driven synaptic potentiation requires the activation of both protein kinase A (PKA) and the GTPase Ras, and is induced upon the activation of ?-adrenergic receptors. Together, these experiments reveal a novel type of plasticity at CA1 hippocampal synapses that is expressed by the activation of GluA3-containing AMPARs.