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J Neurosci. 2007 Oct 24;27(43):11663-75.

The role of the PDZ protein GIPC in regulating NMDA receptor trafficking.

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  • 1Laboratory of Neurochemistry, National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, USA.


The NMDA receptor is an important component of excitatory synapses in the CNS. In addition to its synaptic localization, the NMDA receptor is also present at extrasynaptic sites where it may have functions distinct from those at the synapse. Little is known about how the number, composition, and localization of extrasynaptic receptors are regulated. We identified a novel NMDA receptor-interacting protein, GIPC (GAIP-interacting protein, C terminus), that associates with surface as well as internalized NMDA receptors when expressed in heterologous cells. In neurons, GIPC colocalizes with a population of NMDA receptors on the cell surface, and changes in GIPC expression alter the number of surface receptors. GIPC is mainly excluded from the synapse, and changes in GIPC expression do not change the total number of synaptic receptors. Our results suggest that GIPC may be preferentially associated with extrasynaptic NMDA receptors and may play a role in the organization and trafficking of this population of receptors.

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