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Hamid F.M.,Nanyang Technological University | Makeyev E.V.,Nanyang Technological University | Makeyev E.V.,Center for Developmental Neurobiology
PLoS Genetics | Year: 2014

Alternative splicing (AS) provides a potent mechanism for increasing protein diversity and modulating gene expression levels. How alternate splice sites are selected by the splicing machinery and how AS is integrated into gene regulation networks remain important questions of eukaryotic biology. Here we report that polypyrimidine tract-binding protein 1 (Ptbp1/PTB/hnRNP-I) controls alternate 5′ and 3′ splice site (5′ss and 3′ss) usage in a large set of mammalian transcripts. A top scoring event identified by our analysis was the choice between competing upstream and downstream 5′ss (u5′ss and d5′ss) in the exon 18 of the Hps1 gene. Hps1 is essential for proper biogenesis of lysosome-related organelles and loss of its function leads to a disease called type 1 Hermansky-Pudlak Syndrome (HPS). We show that Ptbp1 promotes preferential utilization of the u5′ss giving rise to stable mRNAs encoding a full-length Hps1 protein, whereas bias towards d5′ss triggered by Ptbp1 down-regulation generates transcripts susceptible to nonsense-mediated decay (NMD). We further demonstrate that Ptbp1 binds to pyrimidine-rich sequences between the u5′ss and d5′ss and activates the former site rather than repressing the latter. Consistent with this mechanism, u5′ss is intrinsically weaker than d5′ss, with a similar tendency observed for other genes with Ptbp1-induced u5′ss bias. Interestingly, the brain-enriched Ptbp1 paralog Ptbp2/nPTB/brPTB stimulated the u5′ss utilization but with a considerably lower efficiency than Ptbp1. This may account for the tight correlation between Hps1 with Ptbp1 expression levels observed across mammalian tissues. More generally, these data expand our understanding of AS regulation and uncover a post-transcriptional strategy ensuring co-expression of a subordinate gene with its master regulator through an AS-NMD tracking mechanism. © 2014 Hamid, Makeyev.

Gordon-Weeks P.R.,Center for Developmental Neurobiology | Fournier A.E.,Montreal Neurological Institute
Journal of Neurochemistry | Year: 2014

During development, dynamic changes in the axonal growth cone and dendrite are necessary for exploratory movements underlying initial axo-dendritic contact and ultimately the formation of a functional synapse. In the adult central nervous system, an impressive degree of plasticity is retained through morphological and molecular rearrangements in the pre- and post-synaptic compartments that underlie the strengthening or weakening of synaptic pathways. Plasticity is regulated by the interplay of permissive and inhibitory extracellular cues, which signal through receptors at the synapse to regulate the closure of critical periods of developmental plasticity as well as by acute changes in plasticity in response to experience and activity in the adult. The molecular underpinnings of synaptic plasticity are actively studied and it is clear that the cytoskeleton is a key substrate for many cues that affect plasticity. Many of the cues that restrict synaptic plasticity exhibit residual activity in the injured adult CNS and restrict regenerative growth by targeting the cytoskeleton. Here, we review some of the latest insights into how cytoskeletal remodeling affects neuronal plasticity and discuss how the cytoskeleton is being targeted in an effort to promote plasticity and repair following traumatic injury in the central nervous system. © 2013 International Society for Neurochemistry.

Hamann J.,University of Amsterdam | Aust G.,Research Laboratories | Arac D.,University of Chicago | Engel F.B.,Friedrich - Alexander - University, Erlangen - Nuremberg | And 26 more authors.
Pharmacological Reviews | Year: 2015

The Adhesion family forms a large branch of the pharmacologically important super-family of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). As Adhesion GPCRs increasingly receive attention from a wide spectrum of biomedical fields, the Adhesion GPCR Consortium, together with the International Union of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology Committee on Receptor Nomenclature and Drug Classification, proposes a unified nomenclature for Adhesion GPCRs. The new names have ADGR as common dominator followed by a letter and a number to denote each subfamily and subtype, respectively. The new names, with old and alternative names within parentheses, are: ADGRA1 (GPR123), ADGRA2 (GPR124), ADGRA3 (GPR125), ADGRB1 (BAI1), ADGRB2 (BAI2), ADGRB3 (BAI3), ADGRC1 (CELSR1), ADGRC2 (CELSR2), ADGRC3 (CELSR3), ADGRD1 (GPR133), ADGRD2 (GPR144), ADGRE1 (EMR1, F4/80), ADGRE2 (EMR2), ADGRE3 (EMR3), ADGRE4 (EMR4), ADGRE5 (CD97), ADGRF1 (GPR110), ADGRF2 (GPR111), ADGRF3 (GPR113), ADGRF4 (GPR115), ADGRF5 (GPR116, Ig-Hepta), ADGRG1 (GPR56), ADGRG2 (GPR64, HE6), ADGRG3 (GPR97), ADGRG4 (GPR112), ADGRG5 (GPR114), ADGRG6 (GPR126), ADGRG7 (GPR128), ADGRL1 (latrophilin-1, CIRL-1, CL1), ADGRL2 (latrophilin-2, CIRL-2, CL2), ADGRL3 (latrophilin-3, CIRL-3, CL3), ADGRL4 (ELTD1, ETL), and ADGRV1 (VLGR1, GPR98). This review covers all major biologic aspects of Adhesion GPCRs, including evolutionary origins, interaction partners, signaling, expression, physiologic functions, and therapeutic potential. © 2015 by The American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.

Formstone C.J.,Center for Developmental Neurobiology
Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology | Year: 2010

The 7TM-Cadherins, Celsr/Flamingo/Starry night, represent a unique subgroup of adhesion-GPCRs containing atypical cadherin repeats, capable of homophilic interaction, linked to the archetypal adhesion-GPCR seven-transmembrane domain. Studies in Drosophila provided a first glimpse of their functional properties, most notably in the regulation of planar cell polarity (PCP) and in the formation of neural architecture. Many of the developmental functions identified in flies are conserved in vertebrates with PCP predicted to influence the development of multiple organ systems. Details of the molecular and cellular functions of 7TM-Cadherins are slowly emerging but many questions remain unanswered. Here the developmental roles of 7TM-Cadherins are discussed and future challenges in understanding their molecular and cellular roles are explored. © 2010 Landes Bioscience and Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Barnes S.J.,Center Neurodegeneration Research | Barnes S.J.,Center for Developmental Neurobiology | Cheetham C.E.,Center Neurodegeneration Research | Cheetham C.E.,Carnegie Mellon University | And 7 more authors.
Journal of Neuroscience | Year: 2015

Synaptic neurotransmission is modified at cortical connections throughout life. Varying the amplitude of the postsynaptic response is one mechanism that generates flexible signaling in neural circuits. The timing of the synaptic response may also play a role. Here, we investigated whether weakening and loss of an entire connection between excitatory cortical neurons was foreshadowed in the timing of the postsynaptic response. We made electrophysiological recordings in rat primary somatosensory cortex that was undergoing experience-dependent loss of complete local excitatory connections. The synaptic latency of pyramid-pyramid connections, which typically comprise multiple synapses, was longer and more variable. Connection strength and latency were not correlated. Instead, prolonged latency was more closely related to progression of connection loss. The action potential waveform and axonal conduction velocity were unaffected, suggesting that the altered timing of neurotransmission was attributable to a synaptic mechanism. Modeling studies indicated that increasing the latency and jitter at a subset of synapses reduced the number of action potentials fired by a postsynaptic neuron. We propose that prolonged synaptic latency and diminished temporal precision of neurotransmission are hallmarks of impending loss of a cortical connection. © 2015 the authors.

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