AG Functional Cell Biology

Berlin, Germany

AG Functional Cell Biology

Berlin, Germany
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Arancillo M.,Baylor College of Medicine | Arancillo M.,Charité - Medical University of Berlin | Min S.-W.,Howard Hughes Medical Institute | Gerber S.,Howard Hughes Medical Institute | And 10 more authors.
Journal of Neuroscience | Year: 2013

Synaptic vesicles undergo sequential steps in preparation for neurotransmitter release. Individual SNARE proteins and the SNARE complex itself have been implicated in these processes. However, discrete effects of SNARE proteins on synaptic function have been difficult to assess using complete loss-of-function approaches. We therefore used a genetic titration technique in cultured mouse hippocampal neurons to evaluate the contribution of the neuronal SNARE protein Syntaxin1 (Stx1) in vesicle docking, priming, and release probability. We generated graded reductions of total Stx1 levels by combining two approaches, namely, endogenous hypomorphic expression of the isoform Stx1B and RNAi-mediated knockdown. Proximity of synaptic vesicles to the active zone was not strongly affected. However, overall release efficiency of affected neurons was severely impaired, as demonstrated by a smaller readily releasable pool size, slower refilling rate of primed vesicles, and lower release probability. Interestingly, dose-response fitting of Stx1 levels against readily releasable pool size and vesicular release probability showed similar Kd (dissociation constant) values at 18% and 19% of wild-type Stx1, with cooperativity estimates of 3.4 and 2.5, respectively. This strongly suggests that priming and vesicle fusion share the same molecular stoichiometry, and are governed by highly related mechanisms. © 2013 the authors.


Zander J.-F.,AG Functional Cell Biology | Munster-Wandowski A.,AG Functional Cell Biology | Brunk I.,AG Functional Cell Biology | Pahner I.,AG Functional Cell Biology | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Neuroscience | Year: 2010

The segregation between vesicular glutamate and GABA storage and release forms the molecular foundation between excitatory and inhibitory neurons and guarantees the precise function of neuronal networks. Using immunoisolation of synaptic vesicles, we now show that VGLUT2 and VGAT, and also VGLUT1 and VGLUT2, coexist in a sizeable pool of vesicles.VGAT immunoisolates transport glutamate in addition to GABA. Furthermore, VGLUT activity enhances uptake of GABA and monoamines. Postembedding immunogold double labeling revealed that VGLUT1, VGLUT2, and VGAT coexist in mossy fiber terminals of the hippocampal CA3 area. Similarly, cerebellar mossy fiber terminals harbor VGLUT1, VGLUT2, and VGAT, while parallel and climbing fiber terminals exclusively contain VGLUT1 or VGLUT2, respectively. VGLUT2 was also observed in cerebellar GABAergic basket cells terminals. We conclude that the synaptic coexistence of vesicular glutamate and GABA transporters allows for corelease of both glutamate and GABA from selected nerve terminals, which may prevent systemic overexcitability by downregulating synaptic activity. Furthermore, our data suggest that VGLUT enhances transmitter storage in nonglutamatergic neurons. Thus, synaptic and vesicular coexistence of VGLUT and VGATis more widespread than previously anticipated, putatively influencing fine-tuning and control of synaptic plasticity. Copyright©2010 the authors.


Gronborg M.,Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry | Pavlos N.J.,Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry | Brunk I.,AG Functional Cell Biology | Chua J.J.E.,Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Neuroscience | Year: 2010

Synaptic vesicles (SVs) store neurotransmitters and release them by exocytosis. The vesicular neurotransmitter transporters discriminate which transmitter will be sequestered and stored by the vesicles. However, it is unclear whether the neurotransmitter phenotype of SVs is solely defined by the transporters or whether it is associated with additional proteins. Here we have compared the protein composition of SVs enriched in vesicular glutamate (VGLUT-1) and GABA transporters (VGAT), respectively, using quantitative proteomics. Of>450 quantified proteins,∼50 were differentially distributed between the populations, with only few of them being specific for SVs. Of these, the most striking differences were observed for the zinc transporter ZnT3 and the vesicle proteins SV2B and SV31 that are associated preferentially with VGLUT-1 vesicles, and for SV2C that is associated mainly with VGAT vesicles. Several additional proteins displayed a preference for VGLUT-1 vesicles including, surprisingly, synaptophysin, synaptotagmins, and syntaxin 1a. Moreover, MAL2, a membrane protein of unknown function distantly related to synaptophysins and SCAMPs, cofractionated with VGLUT-1 vesicles. Both subcellular fractionation and immunolocalization at the light and electron microscopic level revealed that MAL2 is a bona-fide membrane constituent of SVs that is preferentially associated with VGLUT-1-containing nerve terminals. We conclude that SVs specific for different neurotransmitters share the majority of their protein constituents, with only few vesicle proteins showing preferences that, however, are nonexclusive, thus confirming that the vesicular transporters are the only components essential for defining the neurotransmitter phenotype of a SV. Copyright©2010 the authors.


Aramendy M.,University of Fribourg | Seibert S.,AG Functional Cell Biology | Treppmann P.,AG Functional Cell Biology | Richter K.,AG Functional Cell Biology | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Circadian Rhythms | Year: 2013

Background: Mammals can adapt to changing light/dark conditions by advancing or delaying their circadian clock phase. Light pulses evoke changes in gene expression and neuronal activity in the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN), the central pacemaker of the circadian system. Alterations in neuronal activity are partially mediated by changes in synaptic vesicle (SV) fusion at the presynaptic membrane, which modulates release of neurotransmitters.Methods: Male synaptophysin (Syp) knock-out and littermate control wild type mice were tested in an Aschoff type I resetting paradigm. Additionally, gene expression of cFos, Per1 and Per2 was assessed in the SCN. Finally, complexes between the synaptic vesicle proteins Syp and synaptobrevin (Syb) were studied in order to correlate behavior with protein complexes at synaptic vesicles.Results: Here we show that mice lacking Syp, a modulator of neurotransmitter release, are defective in delaying clock phase. In contrast, clock phase advances as well as clock period are normal in Syp -/- knock-out mice. This correlates with the formation of Syp/Syb complexes.Conclusions: Our findings suggest that Syp is involved specifically in the response to a nocturnal light pulse occurring in the early night. It appears that the SV component Syp is critically involved in the delay portion of the resetting mechanism of the circadian clock. © 2013 Aramendy et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

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