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J Neurosci. 2012 Dec 12;32(50):17998-8008. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1804-12.2012.

A noncanonical postsynaptic transport route for a GPCR belonging to the serotonin receptor family.

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Department of Women's and Children's Health, Karolinska Institutet, 17177 Stockholm, Sweden.


Postsynaptic receptor trafficking plays an essential role in tuning neurotransmission and signal plasticity and has emerged as a potential therapeutic target in neuropsychiatric disease. Using a novel application of fluorescence recovery after photobleaching in rat hippocampal neurons, we examined transport from the soma to dendrites of seven G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) implicated in mood disorders. Most GPCRs were delivered to dendrites via lateral diffusion, but one GPCR, the serotonin 1B receptor (5-HT(1B)), was delivered to the dendrites in secretory vesicles. Within the dendrites, 5-HT(1B) were stored in a reservoir of accessible vesicles that were recruited to preferential sites in plasma membrane, as observed with superecliptic pHluorin labeling. After membrane recruitment, 5-HT(1B) transport via lateral diffusion and temporal confinement to inhibitory and excitatory synapses was monitored by single particle tracking. These results suggest an alternative mechanism for control of neuronal activity via a GPCR that has been implicated in mood regulation.

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