Plasticity-related Genes (plasticity-related + gene)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Characterization of the plasticity-related gene, Arc, in the frog brain

Lisa A. Mangiamele
Abstract In mammals, expression of the immediate early gene Arc/Arg3.1 in the brain is induced by exposure to novel environments, reception of sensory stimuli, and production of learned behaviors, suggesting a potentially important role in neural and behavioral plasticity. To date, Arc has only been characterized in a few species of mammals and birds, which limits our ability to understand its role in modifying behavior. To begin to address this gap, we identified Arc in two frog species, Xenopus tropicalis and Physalaemus pustulosus, and characterized its expression in the brain of P. pustulosus. We found that the predicted protein for frog Arc shared 60% sequence similarity with Arc in other vertebrates, and we observed high Arc expression in the forebrain, but not the midbrain or hindbrain, of female túngara frogs sacrificed at breeding ponds. We also examined the time-course of Arc induction in the medial pallium, the homologue of the mammalian hippocampus, in response to a recording of a P. pustulosus mating chorus and found that accumulation of Arc mRNA peaked 0.75 h following stimulus onset. We found that the mating chorus also induced Arc expression in the lateral and ventral pallia and the medial septum, but not in the striatum, hypothalamus, or auditory midbrain. Finally, we examined acoustically induced Arc expression in response to different types of mating calls and found that Arc expression levels in the pallium and septum did not vary with the biological relevance or acoustic complexity of the signal. © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 70: 813,825, 2010 [source]

Molecular cloning and expression regulation of PRG-3, a new member of the plasticity-related gene family

Nicolai E. Savaskan
Abstract Phospholipid-mediated signalling on neurons provokes diverse responses such as neurogenesis, pattern formation and neurite remodelling. We have recently uncovered a novel set of molecules in the mammalian brain, named plasticity-related genes (PRGs), which mediate lipid phosphate phosphatase activity and provide evidence for their involvement in mechanisms of neuronal plasticity. Here, we report on a new member of the vertebrate-specific PRG family, which we have named plasticity-related gene-3 (PRG-3). PRG-3 is heavily expressed in the brain and shows a specific expression pattern during brain development where PRG-3 expression is found predominantly in neuronal cell layers and is already expressed at embryonic day 16. In the mature brain, strongest PRG-3 expression occurs in the hippocampus and cerebellum. Overexcitation of neurons induced by kainic acid leads to a transient down-regulation of PRG-3. Furthermore, PRG-3 is expressed on neurite extensions and promotes neurite growth and a spreading-like cell body in neuronal cells and COS-7 cells. In contrast to previously described members of the PRG family, PRG-3 does not perform its function through enzymatic phospholipid degradation. In summary, our findings feature a new member of the PRG family which shows dynamic expression regulation during brain development and neuronal excitation. [source]

Differential effects of acute and chronic exercise on plasticity-related genes in the rat hippocampus revealed by microarray

Raffaella Molteni
Abstract Studies were performed to determine the effects of acute and chronic voluntary periods of exercise on the expression of hippocampal genes. RNAs from rodents exposed to a running wheel for 3, 7 and 28 days were examined using a microarray with 1176 cDNAs expressed primarily in the brain. The expression of selected genes was quantified by Taqman RT-PCR or RNase protection assay. The largest up-regulation was observed in genes involved with synaptic trafficking (synapsin I, synaptotagmin and syntaxin); signal transduction pathways (Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II, CaM-KII; mitogen-activated/extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase, MAP-K/ERK I and II; protein kinase C, PKC-,) or transcription regulators (cyclic AMP response element binding protein, CREB). Genes associated with the glutamatergic system were up-regulated (N -methyl- d -aspartate receptor, NMDAR-2A and NMDAR-2B and excitatory amino acid carrier 1, EAAC1), while genes related to the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) system were down-regulated (GABAA receptor, glutamate decarboxylase GAD65). Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) was the only trophic factor whose gene was consistently up-regulated at all timepoints. These results, together with the fact that most of the genes up-regulated have a recognized interaction with BDNF, suggest a central role for BDNF on the effects of exercise on brain plasticity. The temporal profile of gene expression seems to delineate a mechanism by which specific molecular pathways are activated after exercise performance. For example, the CaM-K signal system seems to be active during acute and chronic periods of exercise, while the MAP-K/ERK system seems more important during long-term exercise. [source]

N-methyl-D-aspartate-stimulated ERK1/2 signaling and the transcriptional up-regulation of plasticity-related genes are developmentally regulated following in vitro neuronal maturation

Xianju Zhou
Abstract The general features of neuroplasticity are developmentally regulated. Although it has been hypothesized that the loss of plasticity in mature neurons may be due to synaptic saturation and functional reduction of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDAR), the molecular mechanisms remain largely unknown. We examined the effects of NMDAR activation and KCl-mediated membrane depolarization on ERK1/2 signaling following in vitro maturation of cultured cortical neurons. Although NMDA stimulated a robust increase in intracellular calcium at both DIV (day in vitro) 3 and 14, the activation of ERK1/2 and cAMP responsive element-binding protein (CREB) was impaired at DIV 14. Specifically, the phosphorylation of ERK1/2 was stimulated by both NMDA and KCl at DIV 3. However, at DIV 14, NMDA- but not KCl-stimulated ERK1/2 and CREB phosphorylation was significantly diminished. Consistently, the NMDA-induced transcription of ERK/CREB-regulated genes Bdnf exon 4, Arc, and zif268 was significantly attenuated at DIV 14. Moreover, in comparison with 3 DIV neurons, the phosphorylated-ERK1/2 in 14 DIV neurons displayed a tremendous increase following maturation and was more susceptible to dephosphorylation. Blocking calcium channels by nifedipine or NMDAR by APV caused a more dramatic ERK dephosphorylation in 14 DIV neurons. We further demonstrate that the loss of plasticity-related signaling is unrelated to NMDA-induced cell death of the 14 DIV neurons. Taken together, these results suggest that the attenuation of certain aspects of neuroplasticity following maturation may be due to the reduction of NMDAR-mediated gene transcription and a saturation of ERK1/2 activity. © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]