Clustering of AMPA receptors by the synaptic PDZ domain-containing protein PICK1.
Synaptic clustering of neurotransmitter receptors is crucial for efficient signal transduction and integration in neurons. PDZ domain-containing proteins such as PSD-95/SAP90 interact with the intracellular C termini of a variety of receptors and are thought to be important in the targeting and anchoring of receptors to specific synapses. Here, we show that PICK1 (protein interacting with C kinase), a PDZ domain-containing protein, interacts with the C termini of alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazole-4-propionic acid (AMPA) receptors in vitro and in vivo. In neurons, PICK1 specifically colocalizes with AMPA receptors at excitatory synapses. Furthermore, PICK1 induces clustering of AMPA receptors in heterologous expression systems. These results suggest that PICK1 may play an important role in the modulation of synaptic transmission by regulating the synaptic targeting of AMPA receptors. (+info
Metabolic stabilization of muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptor by rapsyn.
Although the metabolic half-life of muscle endplate acetylcholine receptor (AChR) changes during development and after denervation in the adult, little is known about the molecular mechanisms that influence receptor stability. We have investigated the effect on AChR turnover of its interaction with rapsyn, a 43 kDa peripheral membrane protein that is closely associated with the AChR in muscle cells and is required for its clustering at endplates. Both in transfected COS cells and in cultured myotubes from rapsyn-negative and rapsyn-positive mice, we have found that the presence of rapsyn slows the turnover of AChRs by as much as twofold. The effect was similar for both embryonic (alpha2betadeltagamma) and adult (alpha2betadeltaepsilon) AChRs and for AChRs whose beta subunit lacked a putative tyrosine phosphorylation site. Neither colchicine nor cytochalasin D altered AChR turnover or prevented the rapsyn effect. Mutant rapsyn proteins whose N-terminal myristoylation signal was eliminated, or whose C terminus or zinc-finger domains were deleted, failed to change the rate of receptor turnover. Each of these mutations affects the association of the AChR with rapsyn, suggesting that AChR stability is altered by interaction between the two proteins. Our results suggest that, in addition to its role in AChR clustering, rapsyn also functions to metabolically stabilize the AChR. (+info
Variability of neurotransmitter concentration and nonsaturation of postsynaptic AMPA receptors at synapses in hippocampal cultures and slices.
To understand the elementary unit of synaptic communication between CNS neurons, one must know what causes the variability of quantal postsynaptic currents and whether unitary packets of transmitter saturate postsynaptic receptors. We studied single excitatory synapses between hippocampal neurons in culture. Focal glutamate application at individual postsynaptic sites evoked currents (I(glu)) with little variability compared with quantal excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs). The maximal I(glu) was >2-fold larger than the median EPSC. Thus, variations in [glu]cleft are the main source of variability in EPSC size, and glutamate receptors are generally far from saturation during quantal transmission. This conclusion was verified by molecular antagonism experiments in hippocampal cultures and slices. The general lack of glutamate receptor saturation leaves room for increases in [glu]cleft as a mechanism for synaptic plasticity. (+info
CD5 negatively regulates the T-cell antigen receptor signal transduction pathway: involvement of SH2-containing phosphotyrosine phosphatase SHP-1.
The negative regulation of T- or B-cell antigen receptor signaling by CD5 was proposed based on studies of thymocytes and peritoneal B-1a cells from CD5-deficient mice. Here, we show that CD5 is constitutively associated with phosphotyrosine phosphatase activity in Jurkat T cells. CD5 was found associated with the Src homology 2 (SH2) domain containing hematopoietic phosphotyrosine phosphatase SHP-1 in both Jurkat cells and normal phytohemagglutinin-expanded T lymphoblasts. This interaction was increased upon T-cell receptor (TCR)-CD3 cell stimulation. CD5 co-cross-linking with the TCR-CD3 complex down-regulated the TCR-CD3-increased Ca2+ mobilization in Jurkat cells. In addition, stimulation of Jurkat cells or normal phytohemagglutinin-expanded T lymphoblasts through TCR-CD3 induced rapid tyrosine phosphorylation of several protein substrates, which was substantially diminished after CD5 cross-linking. The CD5-regulated substrates included CD3zeta, ZAP-70, Syk, and phospholipase Cgammal but not the Src family tyrosine kinase p56(lck). By mutation of all four CD5 intracellular tyrosine residues to phenylalanine, we found the membrane-proximal tyrosine at position 378, which is located in an immunoreceptor tyrosine-based inhibitory (ITIM)-like motif, crucial for SHP-1 association. The F378 point mutation ablated both SHP-1 binding and the down-regulating activity of CD5 during TCR-CD3 stimulation. These results suggest a critical role of the CD5 ITIM-like motif, which by binding to SHP-1 mediates the down-regulatory activity of this receptor. (+info
Globular domains of agrin are functional units that collaborate to induce acetylcholine receptor clustering.
Agrin, an extracellular matrix protein involved in neuromuscular junction formation, directs clustering of postsynaptic molecules, including acetylcholine receptors (AChRs). This activity resides entirely in the C-terminal portion of the protein, which consists of three laminin-like globular domains (G-domains: G1, G2 and G3) and four EGF-like repeats. Additionally, alternate mRNA splicing yields G-domain variants G2(0,4) with 0- or 4-amino-acid inserts, and G3(0, 8,11,19) with 0-, 8-, 11- or 19-amino-acid inserts. In order to better understand the contributions of individual domains and alternate splicing to agrin activity, single G-domains and covalently linked pairs of G-domains were expressed as soluble proteins and their AChR clustering activity measured on cultured C2 myotubes. These analyses reveal the following: (1) While only G3(8) exhibits detectable activity by itself, all G-domains studied (G1, G2(0), G2(4), G3(0) and G3(8)) enhance G3(8) activity when physically linked to G3(8). This effect is most pronounced when G2(4) is linked to G3(8) and is independent of the order of the G-domains. (2) The deletion of EGF-like repeats enhances activity. (3) Increasing the physical separation between linked G1 and G3(8) domains produces a significant increase in activity; similar alterations to linked G2 and G3(8) domains are without effect. (4) Clusters induced by two concatenated G3(8) domains are significantly smaller than all other agrin forms studied. These data suggest that agrin G-domains are the functional units which interact independently of their specific organization to yield AChR clustering. G-domain synergism resulting in biological output could be due to physical interactions between G-domains or, alternatively, independent interactions of G-domains with cell surface receptors which require spatially localized coactivation for optimal signal transduction. (+info
Differential roles of N- and C-terminal immunoreceptor tyrosine-based inhibition motifs during inhibition of cell activation by killer cell inhibitory receptors.
Killer cell inhibitory receptors (KIRs) inhibit NK and T cell cytotoxicity when recognizing MHC class I molecules on target cells. They possess two tandem intracytoplasmic immunoreceptor tyrosine-based inhibition motifs (ITIMs) that, when phosphorylated, each bind to the two Src homology 2 domain-bearing protein tyrosine phosphatases SHP-1 and SHP-2 in vitro. Using chimeric receptors having an intact intracytoplasmic KIR domain bearing both ITIMs (N + C-KIR), a deleted domain containing the N-terminal ITIM only (N-KIR), or a deleted domain containing the C-terminal ITIM only (C-KIR), we examined the respective contributions of the two ITIMs in the inhibition of cell activation in two experimental models (a rat mast cell and a mouse B cell line) that have been widely used to analyze KIR functions. We found that the two KIR ITIMs play distinct roles. When coaggregated with immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motif-bearing receptors such as high-affinity IgE receptors or B cell receptors, the N + C-KIR and the N-KIR chimeras, but not the C-KIR chimera, inhibited mast cell and B cell activation, became tyrosyl-phosphorylated, and recruited phosphatases in vivo. The N + C-KIR chimera recruited SHP-1 as expected, but also SHP-2. Surprisingly, the N-KIR chimera failed to recruit SHP-1; however, it did recruit SHP-2. Consequently, the N-terminal ITIM is sufficient to recruit SHP-2 and to inhibit cell activation, whereas the N-terminal and the C-terminal ITIMs are both necessary to recruit SHP-1. The two KIR ITIMs, therefore, are neither mandatory for inhibition nor redundant. Rather than simply amplifying inhibitory signals, they differentially contribute to the recruitment of distinct phosphatases that may cooperate to inhibit cell activation. (+info
Triggering of effector functions on a CD8+ T cell clone upon the aggregation of an activatory CD94/kp39 heterodimer.
Some T lymphocytes express the CD94 Ag, which is known to form heterodimers with members of the NKG2 family. We have studied the expression pattern and function of CD94 heterodimers in different alphabeta or gammadelta T cell clones. Most of the CD94+NKG2A- T cells have a low to intermediate expression of CD94 Ag. The cross-linking of the CD94/NKG2 heterodimer in one of these CD8 alphabeta CD94+NKG2A- T cell clones (K14B06) was able to: 1) increase the intracellular concentration of Ca2+, 2) induce the up-regulation of CD25 Ag expression and the secretion of IFN-gamma, and 3) trigger redirected cytotoxicity in a TCR-independent manner. This activatory property was not shared by any other costimulatory molecule expressed by the K14B06 T cell clone, including CD8, CD28, CD45, CD69, or CD2 Ags. The immunoprecipitation of CD94 heterodimer showed a 39-kDa band with a similar m.w. to the activatory heterodimer found on some NK clones. A novel form of the NKG2 family (NKG2H) was identified in K14B06. NKG2H protein represents an alternative spliced form of the NKG2E gene, displaying a charged residue in the transmembrane portion and a cytoplasmic tail that lacks immunoreceptor tyrosine-based inhibitory motifs. The expression of NKG2H in the cell membrane through its association to CD94 and DAP-12 molecules supports that it could form part of the activatory CD94/Kp39 heterodimer present on K14B06 cells. (+info
Cutting edge: recruitment of the CD19/CD21 coreceptor to B cell antigen receptor is required for antigen-mediated expression of Bcl-2 by resting and cycling hen egg lysozyme transgenic B cells.
Recruitment of the CD19/CD21 coreceptor is thought to lower the threshold for effective signaling through the B cell Ag receptor. We provide evidence supporting a second role for coreceptor recruitment, and that is to enhance the survival/proliferative potential of the responding B cells. We show that B cell Ag receptor signaling in the absence of coreceptor recruitment induces cellular accumulation of the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-xL, whereas CD19-mediated signals are required for Bcl-2 accumulation. The expression of both anti-apoptotic proteins correlates with the enhanced responsiveness of both resting and cycling B cells to growth-promoting signals delivered through CD40. These results provide further evidence for the necessity of coreceptor recruitment during Ag-dependent B cell activation and indicate that Ags derived from inflammatory sites function as better thymus-dependent Ags than their counterparts not coated with complement fragments. (+info