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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Serotonin 5-HT receptor blockade enhances Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II function and membrane expression of AMPA receptor subunits in the rat hippocampus: implications for memory formation.

Stimulation of hippocampal 5-HT(1A) receptors impairs memory retention. The highly selective 5-HT(1A) antagonist, WAY-100635, prevents the cognitive deficits induced not only by 5-HT(1A) stimulation but also by cholinergic or NMDA receptor blockade. On this basis, the effects of WAY-100635 on molecular events associated with memory storage were explored. In rat hippocampus, WAY-100635 produced a rapid increase in phosphorylated Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) and in Ca(2+)-independent CaMKII and protein kinase A (PKA) enzyme activity. This increase was followed a few hours later by an enhanced membrane expression of AMPA receptor subunits, especially of the GluR1 subunit phosphorylated at the CaMKII site, pGluR1(Ser831). The same qualitative effects were found with the weaker 5-HT(1A) antagonist NAN-190. The effects of both antagonists were no longer apparent in rats with a previous 5-HT depletion induced by the tryptophan hydroxylase inhibitor p-chlorophenylalanine (PCPA), suggesting that 5-HT(1A) receptor blockade removes the tonic inhibition of 5-HT through 5-HT(1A) receptor stimulation on excitatory hippocampal neurons, with the consequent increase in PKA activity. In addition, administration of WAY-100635 potentiated the learning-specific increase in the hippocampus of phospho-CaMKII, Ca(2+)-independent CaMKII activity, as well as the phosphorylation of either the CaMKII or the PKA site on the AMPA receptor GluR1 subunit. This study suggests that blockade of hippocampal 5-HT(1A) receptors favours molecular events critically involved in memory formation, and provides an in vivo molecular basis for the proposed utility of 5-HT(1A) receptor antagonists in the treatment of cognitive disorders.[1]


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