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

N-acetylhistidine, glutamate, and beta-alanine are concentrated in a receptor cell layer of the trout inner ear.

An epithelial sheet isolated from the trout saccular macula, highly enriched in acousticolateralis receptor cells (hair cells), has been analyzed for primary amine-containing compounds. The hair cell preparation, compared to the saccular nerve, was found to contain elevated levels of the presumptive receptoneural transmitter, glutamate, as well as beta-alanine, and components eluting in the positions of the standards phosphoserine and phosphoethanolamine on cation-exchange HPLC. Saccular nerve contained a different spectrum of primary amines and was elevated specifically in carnosine/homocarnosine. Acid hydrolysis of perchlorate extracts of both hair cell and nerve fractions yielded large amounts of histidine. For the saccular nerve fraction, production of histidine by acid hydrolysis was matched by production of beta-alanine and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and disappearance of carnosine/homocarnosine. The dipeptides carnosine and homocarnosine have been chromatographically resolved by expanded HPLC and found to be present in saccular nerve in a ratio of approximately 10:1, respectively. Production of histidine in the hair cell extract was not coupled with production of beta-alanine and GABA. The hair cell histidine-containing unknown, present in millimolar concentration, has been identified as N-acetylhistidine by the hydrolysis and rechromatography of fractions from cation-exchange HPLC. The large and specific presence of N-acetylhistidine in the hair cell preparation, together with electrophysiological evidence for its facilitatory action on afferent fibers in the frog semicircular canal, is suggestive of a role for this molecule as well as glutamate in acousticolateralis receptoneural transmission.[1]

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