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Neurosci Lett. 2006 Oct 2;406(1-2):38-42. Epub 2006 Aug 9.

Possible involvement of BDNF release in long-lasting synapse formation induced by repetitive PKA activation.

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Department of Neuroscience, Osaka University Graduate School of Frontier Biosciences, Machikaneyama-cho 1-1, Toyonaka, Osaka 560-0043, Japan.


For the analysis of the cellular mechanism underlying long-term synaptic plasticity, a model system that allows long-lasting pursuit is required. Previously we reported that, in hippocampal neurons under dissociated cell culture conditions, repeated (but not a single) transient activation of protein kinase A (PKA) led to an increase in the number of synapses that lasted >3 weeks, and hence we proposed that this phenomenon should serve as an appropriate model system. Here we report that repeated pulsatile application of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) leads to persistent synapse formation equivalent to that after the repeated transient activation of PKA. A BDNF-scavenging substance applied concomitantly with PKA activation abolished the synapse formation. The release of BDNF upon PKA activation was confirmed by phosphorylation of TrkB. These results indicate that the release of BDNF is involved in the putative signaling cascade connecting PKA activation and synapse formation.

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