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J Neurosci. 2009 Apr 29;29(17):5435-42. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0835-09.2009.

Delta-catenin regulates spine and synapse morphogenesis and function in hippocampal neurons during development.

Author information

1
Department of Physiology, Beckman Vision Center, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, California 94143, USA. Jyothi.arikkath@ucsf.edu

Abstract

The maintenance of spine and synapse number during development is critical for neuronal circuit formation and function. Here we show that delta-catenin, a component of the cadherin-catenin cell adhesion complex, regulates spine and synapse morphogenesis during development. Genetic ablation or acute knockdown of delta-catenin leads to increases in spine and synapse density, accompanied by a decrease in tetrodotoxin induced spine plasticity. Our results indicate that delta-catenin may mediate conversion of activity-dependent signals to morphological spine plasticity. The functional role of delta-catenin in regulating spine density does not require binding to cadherins, but does require interactions with PDZ domain-containing proteins. We propose that the perturbations in spine and synaptic structure and function observed after depletion of delta-catenin during development may contribute to functional alterations in neural circuitry, the cognitive deficits observed in mutant mice, and the mental retardation pathology of Cri-du-chat syndrome.

PMID:
19403811
PMCID:
PMC2763482
DOI:
10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0835-09.2009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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