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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007 Nov 20;104(47):18784-8. Epub 2007 Nov 13.

AMPA receptors and stargazin-like transmembrane AMPA receptor-regulatory proteins mediate hippocampal kainate neurotoxicity.

Author information

  • 1Department of Physiology, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94143, USA. susumu.tomita@yale.edu

Abstract

Naturally occurring glutamate analogs, such as kainate and domoate, which cause excitotoxic shellfish poisoning, induce nondesensitizing responses at neuronal alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptors. In addition to acting on AMPA receptors, kainate and domoate also activate high-affinity kainate-type glutamate receptors. The receptor type that mediates their neurotoxicity remains uncertain. Here, we show that the transmembrane AMPA receptor-associated protein (TARP) gamma-2 (or stargazin) and the related TARP gamma-8 augment responses to kainate and domoate by making these neurotoxins more potent and more efficacious AMPA receptor agonists. Genetic deletion of hippocampal enriched gamma-8 selectively abolishes sustained depolarizations in hippocampus mediated by kainate activation of AMPA receptors. gamma-8 knockout mice display typical kainate-induced seizures; however, the associated neuronal cell death in the hippocampus is attenuated in mice lacking gamma-8. This work decisively demonstrates that TARP-associated AMPA receptors mediate kainate neurotoxicity and identifies TARPs as targets for modulating neurotoxic properties of AMPA receptors.

PMID:
18000041
PMCID:
PMC2141854
DOI:
10.1073/pnas.0708970104
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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