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J Cell Sci. 2007 Aug 15;120(Pt 16):2864-74. Epub 2007 Jul 31.

Synaptobrevin I mediates exocytosis of CGRP from sensory neurons and inhibition by botulinum toxins reflects their anti-nociceptive potential.

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  • 1International Centre for Neurotherapeutics, Dublin City University, Glasnevin, Dublin 9, Ireland.


Calcitonin-gene-related peptide (CGRP), a potent vasodilator that mediates inflammatory pain, is elevated in migraine; nevertheless, little is known about its release from sensory neurons. In this study, CGRP was found to occur in the majority of neurons from rat trigeminal ganglia, together with the three exocytotic SNAREs [SNAP25, syntaxin 1 and the synaptobrevin (Sbr, also known as VAMP) isoforms] and synaptotagmin. Ca(2+)-dependent CGRP release was evoked with K(+)-depolarisation and, to lower levels, by capsaicin or bradykinin from neurons that contain the vanilloid receptor 1 and/or bradykinin receptor 2. Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) type A cleaved SNAP25 and inhibited release triggered by K(+) > bradykinin >> capsaicin. Unlike BoNT type D, BoNT type B did not affect exocytosis, even though the neurons possess its receptor and Sbr II and Sbr III got proteolysed (I is resistant in rat) but, in mouse neurons, it additionally cleaved Sbr I and blocked transmitter release. Sbr I and II were found in CGRP-containing vesicles, and each was shown to separately form a SNARE complex. These new findings, together with punctate staining of Sbr I and CGRP in neurites, implicate isoform Sbr I in exocytosis from large dense-core vesicles together with SNAP25 (also, probably, syntaxin 1 because BoNT type C1 caused partial cleavage and inhibition); this differs from Sbr-II-dependent release of transmitters from small synaptic vesicles. Such use of particular Sbr isoform(s) by different neurons raises the functional implications for other cells previously unrecognised.

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