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Antioxid Redox Signal. 2013 Nov 20;19(15):1766-82. doi: 10.1089/ars.2012.5100. Epub 2013 Jun 1.

Cannabinoid receptors couple to NMDA receptors to reduce the production of NO and the mobilization of zinc induced by glutamate.

Author information

1
Department of Neuropharmacology, Cajal Institute, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC) , Madrid, Spain .

Abstract

AIMS:

Overactivation of glutamate N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) increases the cytosolic concentrations of calcium and zinc, which significantly contributes to neural death. Since cannabinoids prevent the NMDAR-mediated increase in cytosolic calcium, we investigated whether they also control the rise of potentially toxic free zinc ions, as well as the processes implicated in this phenomenon.

RESULTS:

The cannabinoid receptors type 1 (CNR1) and NMDARs are cross-regulated in different regions of the nervous system. Cannabinoids abrogated the stimulation of the nitric oxide-zinc pathway by NMDAR, an effect that required the histidine triad nucleotide-binding protein 1 (HINT1). Conversely, NMDAR antagonism reduced the analgesia promoted by the CNR1 agonist WIN55,212-2 and impaired its capacity to internalize CNR1s. At the cell surface, CNR1s co-immunoprecipitated with the NR1 subunits of NMDARs, an association that diminished after the administration of NMDA in vivo or as a consequence of neuropathic overactivation of NMDARs, both situations in which cannabinoids do not control NMDAR activity. Under these circumstances, inhibition of protein kinase A (PKA) restored the association between CNR1s and NR1 subunits, and cannabinoids regained control over NMDAR activity. Notably, CNR1 and NR1 associated poorly in HINT1(-/-) mice, in which there was little cross-regulation between these receptors.

INNOVATION:

The CNR1 can regulate NMDAR function when the receptor is coupled to HINT1. Thus, internalization of CNR1s drives the co-internalization of the NR1 subunits, neutralizing the overactivation of NMDARs.

CONCLUSION:

Cannabinoids require the HINT1 protein to counteract the toxic effects of NMDAR-mediated NO production and zinc release. This study situates the HINT1 protein at the forefront of cannabinoid protection against NMDAR-mediated brain damage.

PMID:
23600761
PMCID:
PMC3837442
DOI:
10.1089/ars.2012.5100
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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