Synaptic physiology and ultrastructure in comatose mutants define an in vivo role for NSF in neurotransmitter release

Fumiko Kawasaki, Annette M. Mattiuz, Richard W. Ordway

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

N-Ethylmaleimide-sensitive fusion protein (NSF) is a cytosolic protein thought to play a key role in vesicular transport in all eukaryotic cells. Although NSF was proposed to function in the trafficking of synaptic vesicles responsible for neurotransmitter release, only recently have in vivo experiments begun to reveal a specific function for NSF in this process. Our previous work showed that mutations in a Drosophila NSF gene, dNSF1, are responsible for the temperature-sensitive paralytic phenotype in comatose (comt) mutants. In this study, we perform electrophysiological and ultrastructural analyses in three different comt alleles to investigate the function of dNSF1 at native synapses in vivo. Electrophysiological analysis of postsynaptic potentials and currents at adult neuromuscular synapses revealed that in the absence of repetitive stimulation, comt synapses exhibit wild-type neurotransmitter release at restrictive (paralytic) temperatures. In contrast, repetitive stimulation at restrictive temperatures revealed a progressive, activity-dependent reduction in neurotransmitter release in comt but not in wild type. These results indicate that dNSF1 does not participate directly in the fusion of vesicles with the target membrane but rather functions in maintaining the pool of readily releasable vesicles competent for fast calcium-triggered fusion. To define dNSF1 function further, we used transmission electron microscopy to examine the distribution of vesicles within synaptic terminals, and observed a marked accumulation of docked vesicles at restrictive temperatures in comt. Together, the results reported here define a role for dNSF1 in the priming of docked synaptic vesicles for calcium-triggered fusion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10241-10249
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Volume18
Issue number24
StatePublished - Dec 15 1998

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N-Ethylmaleimide-Sensitive Proteins
Coma
Neurotransmitter Agents
Synapses
Synaptic Potentials
Temperature
Synaptic Vesicles
Calcium
Presynaptic Terminals
Eukaryotic Cells
Transmission Electron Microscopy
Drosophila
Alleles
Phenotype
Mutation
Membranes
Genes
Proteins

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this

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title = "Synaptic physiology and ultrastructure in comatose mutants define an in vivo role for NSF in neurotransmitter release",
abstract = "N-Ethylmaleimide-sensitive fusion protein (NSF) is a cytosolic protein thought to play a key role in vesicular transport in all eukaryotic cells. Although NSF was proposed to function in the trafficking of synaptic vesicles responsible for neurotransmitter release, only recently have in vivo experiments begun to reveal a specific function for NSF in this process. Our previous work showed that mutations in a Drosophila NSF gene, dNSF1, are responsible for the temperature-sensitive paralytic phenotype in comatose (comt) mutants. In this study, we perform electrophysiological and ultrastructural analyses in three different comt alleles to investigate the function of dNSF1 at native synapses in vivo. Electrophysiological analysis of postsynaptic potentials and currents at adult neuromuscular synapses revealed that in the absence of repetitive stimulation, comt synapses exhibit wild-type neurotransmitter release at restrictive (paralytic) temperatures. In contrast, repetitive stimulation at restrictive temperatures revealed a progressive, activity-dependent reduction in neurotransmitter release in comt but not in wild type. These results indicate that dNSF1 does not participate directly in the fusion of vesicles with the target membrane but rather functions in maintaining the pool of readily releasable vesicles competent for fast calcium-triggered fusion. To define dNSF1 function further, we used transmission electron microscopy to examine the distribution of vesicles within synaptic terminals, and observed a marked accumulation of docked vesicles at restrictive temperatures in comt. Together, the results reported here define a role for dNSF1 in the priming of docked synaptic vesicles for calcium-triggered fusion.",
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Synaptic physiology and ultrastructure in comatose mutants define an in vivo role for NSF in neurotransmitter release. / Kawasaki, Fumiko; Mattiuz, Annette M.; Ordway, Richard W.

In: Journal of Neuroscience, Vol. 18, No. 24, 15.12.1998, p. 10241-10249.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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