|Social, Communication, and Cortical Structural Impairments in Epac2-Deficient Mice. |
Srivastava, Deepak P, et al.
J. Neurosci., 32: 11864-11878 (2012)
Deficits in social and communication behaviors are common features of a number of neurodevelopmental disorders. However, the molecular and cellular substrates of these higher order brain functions are not well understood. Here we report that specific alterations in social and communication behaviors in mice occur as a result of loss of the EPAC2 gene, which encodes a protein kinase A-independent cAMP target. Epac2-deficient mice exhibited robust deficits in social interactions and ultrasonic vocalizations, but displayed normal olfaction, working and reference memory, motor abilities, anxiety, and repetitive behaviors. Epac2-deficient mice displayed abnormal columnar organization in the anterior cingulate cortex, a region implicated in social behavior in humans, but not in somatosensory cortex. In vivo two-photon imaging revealed reduced dendritic spine motility and density on cortical neurons in Epac2-deficient mice, indicating deficits at the synaptic level. Together, these findings provide novel insight into the molecular and cellular substrates of social and communication behavior.
|β-Amyloid 42/40 ratio and kalirin expression in Alzheimer disease with psychosis. |
Patrick S Murray,Caitlin M Kirkwood,Megan C Gray,Milos D Ikonomovic,William R Paljug,Eric E Abrahamson,Ruth A Henteleff,Ronald L Hamilton,Julia K Kofler,William E Klunk,Oscar L Lopez,Peter Penzes,Robert A Sweet
Neurobiology of aging
Psychosis in Alzheimer disease differentiates a subgroup with more rapid decline, is heritable, and aggregates within families, suggesting a distinct neurobiology. Evidence indicates that greater impairments of cerebral cortical synapses, particularly in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, may contribute to the pathogenesis of psychosis in Alzheimer disease (AD) phenotype. Soluble β-amyloid induces loss of dendritic spine synapses through impairment of long-term potentiation. In contrast, the Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) kalirin is an essential mediator of spine maintenance and growth in cerebral cortex. We therefore hypothesized that psychosis in AD would be associated with increased soluble β-amyloid and reduced expression of kalirin in the cortex. We tested this hypothesis in postmortem cortical gray matter extracts from 52 AD subjects with and without psychosis. In subjects with psychosis, the β-amyloid(1-42)/β-amyloid(1-40) ratio was increased, due primarily to reduced soluble β-amyloid(1-40), and kalirin-7, -9, and -12 were reduced. These findings suggest that increased cortical β-amyloid(1-42)/β-amyloid(1-40) ratio and decreased kalirin expression may both contribute to the pathogenesis of psychosis in AD.
|An isoform of kalirin, a brain-specific GDP/GTP exchange factor, is enriched in the postsynaptic density fraction. |
Penzes, P, et al.
J. Biol. Chem., 275: 6395-403 (2000)
Communication between membranes and the actin cytoskeleton is an important aspect of neuronal function. Regulators of actin cytoskeletal dynamics include the Rho-like small GTP-binding proteins and their exchange factors. Kalirin is a brain-specific protein, first identified through its interaction with peptidylglycine-alpha-amidating monooxygenase. In this study, we cloned rat Kalirin-7, a 7-kilobase mRNA form of Kalirin. Kalirin-7 contains nine spectrin-like repeats, a Dbl homology domain, and a pleckstrin homology domain. We found that the majority of Kalirin-7 protein is associated with synaptosomal membranes, but a fraction is cytosolic. We also detected higher molecular weight Kalirin proteins. In rat cerebral cortex, Kalirin-7 is highly enriched in the postsynaptic density fraction. In primary cultures of neurons, Kalirin-7 is detected in spine-like structures, while other forms of Kalirin are visualized in the cell soma and throughout the neurites. Kalirin-7 and its Dbl homology-pleckstrin homology domain induce formation of lamellipodia and membrane ruffling, when transiently expressed in fibroblasts, indicative of Rac1 activation. Using Rac1, the Dbl homology-pleckstrin homology domain catalyzed the in vitro exchange of bound GDP with GTP. Kalirin-7 is the first guanine-nucleotide exchange factor identified in the postsynaptic density, where it is positioned optimally to regulate signal transduction pathways connecting membrane proteins and the actin cytoskeleton.
|Kalirin inhibition of inducible nitric-oxide synthase. |
Ratovitski, E A, et al.
J. Biol. Chem., 274: 993-9 (1999)
Nitric oxide (NO) acts as a neurotransmitter. However, excess NO produced from neuronal NO synthase (nNOS) or inducible NOS (iNOS) during inflammation of the central nervous system can be neurotoxic, disrupting neurotransmitter and hormone production and killing neurons. A screen of a hippocampal cDNA library showed that a unique region of the iNOS protein interacts with Kalirin, previously identified as an interactor with a secretory granule peptide biosynthetic enzyme. Kalirin associates with iNOS in vitro and in vivo and inhibits iNOS activity by preventing the formation of iNOS homodimers. Expression of exogenous Kalirin in pituitary cells dramatically reduces iNOS inhibition of ACTH secretion. Thus Kalirin may play a neuroprotective role during inflammation of the central nervous system by inhibiting iNOS activity.
|Kalirin, a multifunctional PAM COOH-terminal domain interactor protein, affects cytoskeletal organization and ACTH secretion from AtT-20 cells. |
Mains, R E, et al.
J. Biol. Chem., 274: 2929-37 (1999)
The production and regulated secretion of bioactive peptides require a series of lumenal enzymes to convert inactive precursors into bioactive peptides plus several cytosolic proteins to govern granule formation, maturation, translocation, and exocytosis. Peptidylglycine alpha-amidating monooxygenase (PAM), an enzyme essential for biosynthesis of many peptides, is an integral membrane protein with trafficking information in both its lumenal and cytosolic domains. Kalirin, a PAM cytosolic domain interactor protein with spectrin-like repeats and GDP/GTP exchange factor activity for Rac1, is expressed with PAM in neurons but is not expressed in the anterior pituitary or AtT-20 corticotrope cells. Expression of Kalirin alters the cytoskeletal organization of Chinese hamster ovary and AtT-20 cells expressing membrane PAM. Expression of membrane PAM also alters cytoskeletal organization, demonstrating the presence of endogenous proteins that can mediate this effect. Significant amounts of both PAM and Kalirin fractionate with cytoskeletal elements. Since cytoskeletal organization is critical for exocytosis, constitutive-like and regulated secretions were evaluated. Whereas the constitutive-like secretion of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) is increased by expression of membrane PAM, regulated secretion is eliminated. Expression of Kalirin in AtT-20 cells expressing membrane PAM restores stimulated secretion of ACTH. Thus, Kalirin or its homologue may be essential for regulated secretion, and the PAM-Kalirin interaction may coordinate intragranular with cytosolic events.