Glutamate receptors as targets of protein kinase C in the pathophysiology and treatment of animal models of mania.


Journal Article

Considerable biochemical evidence suggests that the protein kinase C (PKC) signaling cascade may be a convergent point for the actions of anti-manic agents, and that excessive PKC activation can disrupt prefrontal cortical regulation of thinking and behavior. To date, however, brain protein targets of PKC's anti-manic effects have not been fully identified. Here we showed that PKC activity was enhanced in the prefrontal cortex of animals treated with the psychostimulant amphetamine. Phosphorylation of MARCKS, a marker of PKC activity, was increased in the prefrontal cortex of animals treated with the psychostimulant amphetamine, as well as in sleep-deprived animals (another animal model of mania), but decreased in lithium-treated animals. The antidepressant imipramine, which shows pro-manic properties in patients with bipolar disorder (BPD), also enhanced phospho-MARCKS in prefrontal cortex in vivo. We further explored the functional targets of PKC in mania-associated behaviors. Neurogranin is a brain-specific, postsynaptically located PKC substrate. PKC phosphorylation of neurogranin was robustly increased by pro-manic manipulations and decreased by anti-manic agents. PKC phosphorylation of the NMDA receptor site GluN1S896 and the AMPA receptor site GluA1T840 was also enhanced in the prefrontal cortex of animals treated with the antidepressant imipramine, as well as in behaviorally sleep-deprived animals, in striking contrast to the reduced activity seen in lithium-treated animals. These results suggest that PKC may play an important role in regulating NMDA and AMPA receptor functions. The biochemical profile of the PKC pathway thus encompasses both pro- and anti-manic effects on behavior. These results suggest that PKC modulators or their intracellular targets may ultimately represent novel avenues for the development of new therapeutics for mood disorders.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Szabo, ST; Machado-Vieira, R; Yuan, P; Wang, Y; Wei, Y; Falke, C; Cirelli, C; Tononi, G; Manji, HK; Du, J

Published Date

  • January 2009

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 56 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 47 - 55

PubMed ID

  • 18789340

Pubmed Central ID

  • 18789340

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0028-3908

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2008.08.015


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England