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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2001 Sep 11;98(19):10930-5. Epub 2001 Sep 4.

A src family tyrosine kinase inhibits neurotransmitter release from neuronal cells.

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  • 1Mitsubishi Kagaku Institute of Life Sciences, 11 Minamiooya, Machida, Tokyo 194-8511, Japan.


Tyrosine kinases are expressed in many tissues, particularly in the central nervous system, and regulate various cellular functions. We report here that a src family tyrosine kinase-specific inhibitor, PP2, enhances neurotransmitter release from PC12 cells and primary cultured neurons. PP2 enhances only Ca(2+)-dependent release; it does not affect basal release. These effects result from an enhancement of vesicular exocytosis and not from the reuptake or refilling of neurotransmitters because Ca(2+)-dependent secretion of an exogenously expressed reporter protein, the human growth hormone (hGH), is also enhanced by PP2. Overexpression of constitutive active v-src, but not of a kinase-inactive mutant, suppressed Ca(2+)-dependent release. In PP2-treated cells, Pyk2, paxillin, and some other proteins showed a decrease in tyrosine phosphorylation, and the enhancement of tyrosine phosphorylation of these proteins in response to Ca(2+) influx was also reduced. Electron and fluorescence microscopy showed that PP2 treatment induced morphological change and decreased phalloidin reactivity at the filopodium-like structures on the processes of PC12 cells. Interestingly, inhibition of actin polymerization with cytochalasin D and latrunculin A enhanced Ca(2+)-dependent, but not basal, release. It is possible that a src family tyrosine kinase, through the regulation of actin dynamics, has an inhibitory function to regulate neurotransmitter release.

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