Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10077/7404
Title: Synaptic plasticity regulation mediated by BDNF: functional and morphological study
Authors: Montalbano, Alberto
Keywords: long-term potentiationchemical LTPglycineTEABDNFhippocampusconfocaldendritic spines
Issue Date: 20-Mar-2012
Publisher: Università degli studi di Trieste
Abstract: The long-term potentiation (LTP) represents a widely studied form of synaptic plasticity related to learning and memory processes, which involves a long-lasting strengthening of synaptic connections through changes of their transmission and cytoarchitecture. The induction of LTP is classically achieved by tetanic stimulation of presynaptic components but it is also possible to in- duce chemically a long-term potentiation of the synaptic efficacy, thus enhancing a larger number of synapses compared to electrical stimulation and facilitating the biochemical and morphological study. The first part of this thesis is a methodological study of glycine and tetraethylammonium (TEA) induced chemical LTP (cLTP) in cultured hippocampal cells. Brief glycine (in Mg2+-free) application activate NMDA receptors, whereas TEA blocks of K+ channels inducing a depolariza- tion responsible for Ca2+ influx. Both drugs were briefly superfused and mEPSCs were monitored for all the duration of the experiments (≃60 min). This was considered as a necessary step to detect later the role of the Brain Derived Neurophic Factor (BDNF) in cLTP. Healthy hippocampal cells were dissected from rats of postnatal day 1-2. After a period of 10-12 days in vitro the cells reached optimal density, a typical mature pyramidal neuron morphology, and an extended dendritic arborization which facilitates synaptic contacts. At this stage patch-clamp technique in the whole-cell configuration was used to study the electrophysiological properties of pyramidal hippocampal neurons, able to produce spontaneous electrical activity. cLTP was tested recording miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) in voltage-clamp mode focusing on changes in their amplitude and frequency. A significant decrease in mEPSCs inter-event intervals was observed after glycine and TEA application, without significant changes in aptitudes. Therefore 20 min after glycine application an increase (≃ 61.6 %) in mEPSCs frequency was observed. A similar result was obtained also after TEA application (≃ 66 %). Following cLTP we observed also morphological changes such as an increase in density and a remodeling of different classes of dendritic spines. The role of BDNF in this cLTP model was assessed testing by ELISA assay the total BDNF expres- sion on cell lysate and by blocking Tropomyosin Receptor Kinase (Trk) with K252A. A significant increase in BDNF levels (≃ 120 %) was observed 50 min after cLTP induction. A switch from cLTP into cLTD was observed blocking Trk receptors. Moreover, confocal images collected before and after chemical potentiation in the presence of K252A showed a significant reduction (≃10%) in the average spine density both at the proximal and distal level. A significant reduction of the p-TrkB/TrkB ratio, after both gly- and TEA-LTP, was observed in distal dendrites compared to the soma. This therefore suggests a translocation of the activated receptor from periphery to the soma.
Description: 2010/2011
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10077/7404
NBN: urn:nbn:it:units-9141
Appears in Collections:Scienze biologiche

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