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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2007 Jun;17(3):374-80. Epub 2007 Apr 20.

Do different endocytic pathways make different synaptic vesicles?

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, UCSF School of Medicine, 600 16th Street, San Francisco, CA 94158-2517, USA.


At a wide range of synapses, synaptic vesicles reside in distinct pools that respond to different stimuli. The recycling pool supplies the vesicles required for release in response to modest stimulation, whereas the reserve pool is mobilized only by strong stimulation. Multiple pathways have been proposed for the recycling of synaptic vesicles after exocytosis, but the relationship of these pathways to the different synaptic vesicle pools has remained unclear. Synaptic vesicle proteins have also been assumed to undergo recycling as a unit. However, emerging data indicate that differences in the association with distinct endocytic adaptors such as the heterotetrameric adaptor AP3 influence the trafficking of individual synaptic vesicle proteins, affecting the composition of synaptic vesicles and hence their functional characteristics. These observations might begin to account for differences in the properties of different vesicle pools.

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