Splice variant-specific interaction of the NMDA receptor subunit NR1 with neuronal intermediate filaments.

Published

Journal Article

NMDA receptors are excitatory neurotransmitter receptors critical for synaptic plasticity and neuronal development in the mammalian brain. These receptors are found highly concentrated in the postsynaptic membrane of glutamatergic synapses. To investigate the molecular mechanisms underlying NMDA receptor localization, we used the yeast two-hybrid system to identify proteins expressed in the brain that interact with the NMDA receptor subunit NR1. Here we report that the 68 kDa neurofilament subunit NF-L directly interacts with the NR1 subunit. This interaction occurs between the cytoplasmic C-terminal domain of NR1 and the rod domain of NF-L. However, NR1 splice variants lacking the first C-terminal exon cassette (C1) failed to associate with NF-L. Immunogold electron microscopy revealed a preferential localization of NR1 at the ends of in vitro-assembled neurofilaments. Overexpression of C1 cassette-containing NR1 constructs in fibroblast cells disrupted the assembly of recombinant neurofilaments. In addition, NR1 and NF-L cofractionated in detergent-treated rat brain synaptic plasma membranes. Furthermore, NR1 and NF-L colocalize in the dendrites and growth cones of cultured hippocampal neurons. These results demonstrate the splice variant-specific association of NR1 with neurofilaments and suggest a possible mechanism for anchoring or localizing NMDA receptors in the neuronal plasma membrane.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Ehlers, MD; Fung, ET; O'Brien, RJ; Huganir, RL

Published Date

  • January 15, 1998

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 18 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 720 - 730

PubMed ID

  • 9425014

Pubmed Central ID

  • 9425014

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0270-6474

Language

  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States