The Collapsin Response Mediator Proteins (CRMPs) are highly expressed in the developing brain, and in adult brain areas that retain neurogenesis, ie: the olfactory bulb (OB) and the dentate gyrus (DG). During brain development, CRMPs are essentially involved in signaling of axon guidance and neurite outgrowth, but their functions in the adult brain remain largely unknown. CRMP5 has been initially identified as the target of auto-antibodies involved in paraneoplasic neurological diseases and further implicated in a neurite outgrowth inhibition mediated by tubulin binding. Interestingly, CRMP5 is also highly expressed in adult brain neurogenic areas where its functions have not yet been elucidated. Here we observed in both neurogenic areas of the adult mouse brain that CRMP5 was present in proliferating and post-mitotic neuroblasts, while they migrate and differentiate into mature neurons. In CRMP5−/− mice, the lack of CRMP5 resulted in a significant increase of proliferation and neurogenesis, but also in an excess of apoptotic death of granule cells in the OB and DG. These findings provide the first evidence that CRMP5 is involved in the generation and survival of newly generated neurons in areas of the adult brain with a high level of activity-dependent neuronal plasticity.
In vitro studies have pointed to the collapsin response mediator proteins (CRMPs) as key regulators of neurite outgrowth and axonal differentiation. CRMP3 is expressed mostly in the nervous system during development but remains at high levels in the hippocampus of adults. To explore CRMP3 function in vivo, we generated mice with targeted disruption of the CRMP3 gene. Immunohistochemistry and Golgi staining of CA1 showed abnormal dendrite and spine morphogenesis in the hippocampus of CRMP3-deficient mice. Apical dendrites displayed an increase in undulation and a reduction in length and branching points. Basal dendrites also exhibited a reduction in length with an alteration in soma stem distribution and an increased number of thick dendrites localized in stratum oriens (SO). Long-term potentiation (LTP) was impaired in this area. These data indicate an important role for CRMP3 in dendrite arborization, guide-posts navigation, and neuronal plasticity.
Golgi analysis; gene targeting; neurite outgrowth; LTP
Recent studies suggest that the pathogenic process in neurodegenerative disorders may disrupt mature neuronal circuitries and neurogenesis in the adult brain. Abnormal activation of CDK5 is associated with neurodegenerative disorders, and recently a critical role for CDK5 in adult neurogenesis has been identified. We have developed an in vitro model of abnormal CDK5 activation during adult hippocampal neurogenesis, and here we used this model to investigate aberrantly phosphorylated downstream targets of CDK5.
Abnormal CDK5 activation in an in vitro model of adult neurogenesis results in hyperphosphorylation of collapsin-response mediator protein-2 (CRMP2) and impaired neurite outgrowth. Inhibition of CDK5, or expression of a non-phosphorylatable (S522A) CRMP2 construct reduced CRMP2 hyperphosphorylation, and reversed neurite outgrowth deficits. CRMP2 plays a role in microtubule dynamics; therefore we examined the integrity of microtubules in this model using biochemical and electron microscopy techniques. We found that microtubule organization was disrupted under conditions of CDK5 activation. Finally, to study the relevance of these findings to neurogenesis in neurodegenerative conditions associated with HIV infection, we performed immunochemical analyses of the brains of patients with HIV and transgenic mice expressing HIV-gp120 protein. CDK5-mediated CRMP2 phosphorylation was significantly increased in the hippocampus of patients with HIV encephalitis and in gp120 transgenic mice, and this effect was rescued by genetic down-modulation of CDK5 in the mouse model.
These results reveal a functional mechanism involving microtubule destabilization through which abnormal CDK5 activation and CRMP2 hyperphosphorylation might contribute to defective neurogenesis in neurodegenerative disorders such as HIV encephalitis.
neurogenesis; HIV; encephalitis; CRMP2; dpysl2; CDK5; microtubules; neurite outgrowth
Glycogen Synthase Kinase 3 (GSK3) has been implicated in regulating chromosomal alignment and mitotic progression but the physiological substrates mediating these GSK3-dependent effects have not been identified. Collapsin Response Mediator Protein 4 (CRMP4) is a cytosolic phosphoprotein known to regulate cytoskeletal dynamics and is a known physiological substrate of GSK3. In this study, we investigate the role of CRMP4 during mitosis.
Methodology and Principal Findings
Here we demonstrate that during mitosis CRMP4 phosphorylation is regulated in a GSK3-dependent manner. We show that CRMP4 localizes to spindle microtubules during mitosis and loss of CRMP4 disrupts chromosomal alignment and mitotic progression. The effect of CRMP4 on chromosomal alignment is dependent on phosphorylation by GSK3 identifying CRMP4 as a critical GSK3 substrate during mitotic progression. We also provide mechanistic data demonstrating that CRMP4 regulates spindle microtubules consistent with its known role in the regulation of the microtubule cytoskeleton.
Conclusion and Significance
Our findings identify CRMP4 as a key physiological substrate of GSK3 in regulating chromosomal alignment and mitotic progression through its effect on spindle microtubules.
Collapsin response mediator proteins (CRMPs) are a family of neuron-enriched proteins that regulate neurite outgrowth and growth cone dynamics. Here, we show that Cdk5 phosphorylates CRMP1, CRMP2, and CRMP4, priming for subsequent phosphorylation by GSK3 in vitro. In contrast, DYRK2 phosphorylates and primes CRMP4 only. The Cdk5 and DYRK2 inhibitor purvalanol decreases the phosphorylation of CRMP proteins in neurons, whereas CRMP1 and CRMP2, but not CRMP4, phosphorylation is decreased in Cdk5−/− cortices. Stimulation of neuroblastoma cells with IGF1 or TPA decreases GSK3 activity concomitantly with CRMP2 and CRMP4 phosphorylation. Conversely, increased GSK3 activity is not sufficient to increase CRMP phosphorylation. However, the growth cone collapse-inducing protein Sema3A increases Cdk5 activity and promotes phosphorylation of CRMP2 (but not CRMP4). Therefore, inhibition of GSK3 alters phosphorylation of all CRMP isoforms; however, individual isoforms can be differentially regulated by their respective priming kinase. This is the first GSK3 substrate found to be regulated in this manner and may explain the hyperphosphorylation of CRMP2 observed in Alzheimer's disease.
Collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP-2) is known as a regulator of neuronal polarity and differentiation through microtubule assembly and trafficking. Here, we show that CRMP-2 is ubiquitously expressed and a splice variant (CRMP-2L), which is expressed mainly in epithelial cells among nonneuronal cells, regulates myosin II-mediated cellular functions, including cell migration. While the CRMP-2 short form (CRMP-2S) is recognized as a substrate of the Rho-GTP downstream kinase ROCK in neuronal cells, a CRMP-2 complex containing 2L not only bound the catalytic domain of ROCK II through two binding domains but also trapped and inhibited the kinase. CRMP-2L protein levels profoundly affected haptotactic migration and the actin-myosin cytoskeleton of carcinoma cells as well as nontransformed epithelial cell migration in a ROCK activity-dependent manner. Moreover, the ectopic expression of CRMP-2L but not -2S inhibited fibronectin matrix assembly in fibroblasts. Underlying these responses, CRMP-2L regulated the kinase activity of ROCK II but not ROCK I, independent of GTP-RhoA levels. This study provides a new insight into CRMP-2 as a controller of myosin II-mediated cellular functions through the inhibition of ROCK II in nonneuronal cells.
Elevated glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) activity is associated with Alzheimer disease. We have found that collapsin response mediator proteins (CRMP) 2 and 4 are physiological substrates of GSK-3. The amino acids targeted by GSK-3 comprise a hyperphosphorylated epitope first identified in plaques isolated from Alzheimer brain. Expression of wild type CRMP2 in primary hippocampal neurons or SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells promotes axon elongation. However, a GSK-3-insensitive CRMP2 mutant has dramatically reduced ability to promote axon elongation, a similar effect to pharmacological inhibition of GSK-3. Hence, we propose that phosphorylation of CRMP proteins by GSK-3 regulates axon elongation. This work provides a direct connection between hyperphosphorylation of these residues and elevated GSK-3 activity, both of which are observed in Alzheimer brain.
Semaphorin activation of Plexin (Plex) receptors provides axonal guidance during neuronal development. Two families of cytoplasmic proteins, collapsin response mediator proteins (CRMPs) and molecules interacting with CasL (MICALs), have been implicated in Plexin function. The relationship between CRMP and MICAL signaling has not been defined nor is the mechanism by which Plexin activates MICAL clear. Here, we show that CRMP and MICAL physically associate and that Sema signaling promotes this association. MICAL enzymatic activity is inhibited by the C-terminal domain of MICAL. CRMP and Plexin associate with nonenzymatic and enzymatic domains of MICAL and together release MICAL enzymatic autoinhibition. In addition to acting as an upstream MICAL activator, CRMP functions downstream of MICAL, inhibiting the catalytic domain. A constitutively active CRMP mutant inhibits MICAL activity more potently than does wild-type CRMP, suggesting that CRMP or a CRMP-associated factor is a MICAL substrate. Thus, complex Plex/CRMP/MICAL interactions transduce Semaphorin signaling into axon guidance.
plexin; neuropilin; semaphorin; MICAL; axonal guidance; growth cone collapse; CRMP
The mechanisms underlying neuronal pathology and death in the spinal cord (SC) during inflammation remain elusive. We previously showed the important role of plasma membrane calcium ATPases (PMCAs) in the survival of SC neurons, in vitro. We also postulated that a decrease in PMCA2 expression could cause neuronal death during experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), an animal model of multiple sclerosis. The current studies were undertaken to define the specific contribution of PMCA2 to degeneration of SC neurons, the effectors downstream to PMCA2 mediating neuronal death and the triggers that reduce PMCA2 expression. We report that knockdown of PMCA2 in SC neurons decreases collapsin response mediator protein 1 (CRMP1) levels. This is followed by cell death. Silencing of CRMP1 expression also leads to neuronal loss. Kainic acid reduces both PMCA2 and CRMP1 levels and induces neuronal death. Administration of an α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole-propionate (AMPA)/kainate receptor antagonist, at onset or peak of EAE, restores the decreased PMCA2 and CRMP1 levels to control values and ameliorates clinical deficits. Thus, our data link the reduction in PMCA2 expression with perturbations in the expression of CRMP1 and the ensuing death of SC neurons. This represents an additional mechanism underlying AMPA/kainate receptor-mediated excitotoxicity with relevance to neurodegeneration in EAE.
multiple sclerosis; spinal cord injury; ATP2B2; neuroprotection; excitotoxicity
Metastasis is a predominant cause of death in patients with cancer. It is a complex multistep process that needs to be better understood if we are to develop new approaches to managing tumor metastasis. Tumor cell invasion of the local stroma is suppressed by collapsin response mediator protein-1 (CRMP-1). Recently, we identified a long isoform of CRMP-1 (LCRMP-1), expression of which correlates with cancer cell invasiveness and poor clinical outcome in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Here, we report that LCRMP-1 overexpression in noninvasive human cell lines enhanced filopodia formation, cancer cell migration, and invasion via stabilization of actin. This effect required a highly conserved N-terminal region of LCRMP-1 as well as the WASP family verprolin-homologous protein-1/actin nucleation pathway (WAVE-1/actin nucleation pathway). Furthermore, LCRMP-1 appeared to act downstream of Cdc42, a Rho family protein known to be involved in actin rearrangement. In addition, LCRMP-1 associated with CRMP-1, which downregulated cancer cell metastasis by interrupting the association of LCRMP-1 and WAVE-1. Finally, we found that high-level expression of LCRMP-1 and low-level expression of CRMP-1 were associated with lymph node metastasis and poor survival in patients with NSCLC. In sum, we show that LCRMP-1 and CRMP-1 have opposing functions in regulating cancer cell invasion and metastasis and propose that this pathway may serve as a potential anticancer target.
Collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP-2) enhances the advance of growth cones by regulating microtubule assembly and Numb-mediated endocytosis. We previously showed that Rho kinase phosphorylates CRMP-2 during growth cone collapse; however, the roles of phosphorylated CRMP-2 in growth cone collapse remain to be clarified. Here, we report that CRMP-2 phosphorylation by Rho kinase cancels the binding activity to the tubulin dimer, microtubules, or Numb. CRMP-2 binds to actin, but its binding is not affected by phosphorylation. Electron microscopy revealed that CRMP-2 localizes on microtubules, clathrin-coated pits, and actin filaments in dorsal root ganglion neuron growth cones, while phosphorylated CRMP-2 localizes only on actin filaments. The phosphomimic mutant of CRMP-2 has a weakened ability to enhance neurite elongation. Furthermore, ephrin-A5 induces phosphorylation of CRMP-2 via Rho kinase during growth cone collapse. Taken together, these results suggest that Rho kinase phosphorylates CRMP-2, and inactivates the ability of CRMP-2 to promote microtubule assembly and Numb-mediated endocytosis, during growth cone collapse.
Congenital hypothyroidism (CH) can lead to irreversible central nervous system (CNS) damage. However, the pathogenesis of the developmental brain disorders caused by CH has not been completely elucidated. ARPC5 and CRMP2 are closely associated with neurite outgrowth in brain development. Thus, the aim of the present study was to determine whether CRMP2B and ARPC5 expression is altered in the developing cerebral cortex of rats with CH. Control rats and rats with hypothyroidism were sacrificed at birth and at 15 days postpartum. We performed qRT-PCR to detect differences in the crmp2B and arpc5 mRNA expression in the right half of the frontal cortex of these rats. Western blotting was then used to detect differences in CRMP2B and ARPC5 protein expression. Furthermore, immunohistochemical analysis was performed on the left half of the frontal cortex to detect abnormal localization of CRMP2B and ARPC5. Results showed increased expression of the nuclear short isoform of CRMP2B and decreased expression of full-length CRMP2B and ARPC5 in cortical neurons of rats with hypothyroidism. These findings demonstrate that reduced levels of thyroid hormones can inhibit the expression of full-length CRMP2B and ARPC5 and promote nuclear transformation of the short isoform of CRMP2B. CRMP2B and ARPC5 may participate in CNS injury mediated by hypothyroidism by inducing neurite outgrowth inhibition and cytoskeletal protein disorganization.
CRMP2B; ARPC5; congenital hypothyroidism; frontal cortex; rat.
Collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP-2), traditionally viewed as an axon/dendrite specification and axonal growth protein, has emerged as nidus in regulation of both pre- and post-synaptic Ca2+ channels. Building on our discovery of the interaction and regulation of Ca2+ channels by CRMP-2, we recently identified a short sequence in CRMP-2 which, when appended to the transduction domain of HIV TAT protein, suppressed acute, inflammatory and neuropathic pain in vivo by functionally uncoupling CRMP-2 from the Ca2+ channel. Remarkably, we also found that this region attenuated Ca2+ influx via N-methylD-Aspartate receptors (NMDARs) and reduced neuronal death in a moderate controlled cortical impact model of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Here, we sought to extend these findings by examining additional neuroprotective effects of this peptide (TAT-CBD3) and exploring the biochemical mechanisms by which TAT-CBD3 targets NMDARs. We observed that an intraperitoneal injection of TAT-CBD3 peptide significantly reduced infarct volume in an animal model of focal cerebral ischemia. Neuroprotection was observed when TAT-CBD3 peptide was given either prior to or after occlusion but just prior to reperfusion. Surprisingly, a direct biochemical complex was not resolvable between the NMDAR subunit NR2B and CRMP-2. Intracellular application of TAT-CBD3 failed to inhibit NMDAR current. NR2B interactions with the post synaptic density protein 95 (PSD-95) remained intact and were not disrupted by TAT-CBD3. Peptide tiling of intracellular regions of NR2B revealed two 15-mer sequences, in the carboxyl-terminus of NR2B, that may confer binding between NR2B and CRMP-2 which supports CRMP-2's role in excitotoxicity and neuroprotection.
N-methylD-aspartate receptor; CRMP-2; focal cerebral ischemia; MCAO model; peptide
Collapsin response mediator proteins (CRMPs) have been implicated in signaling of axonal guidance, including semaphorins. We have previously identified a unique member of this gene family, CRMP-associated molecule CRAM (CRMP-5), which is phylogenetically divergent from the other four CRMPs. In this study, we have examined the distribution and function of CRAM in developing neurons. Immunohistochemical analysis showed accumulation of CRAM in the filopodia of growth cones. Experiments using cytochalasin D indicated that filopodial localization of CRAM was independent of filamentous actin. Overexpression of CRAM in neuronal cells significantly promoted filopodial growth and led to the formation of supernumerary growth cones, which acquired resistance to semaphorin-3A stimulation. Finally, knockdown of CRAM by using RNA interference blocked filopodial formation and revealed an aberrant morphology of growth cones. We propose that CRAM regulates filopodial dynamics and growth cone development, thereby restricting the response of growth cone to repulsive guidance cues.
Temporal and spatial assembly of signal transduction machinery determines dendrite branch patterning, a process crucial for proper synaptic transmission. Our laboratory previously cloned and characterized cypin, a protein that decreases PSD-95 family member localization and regulates dendrite number. Cypin contains zinc binding, collapsin response mediator protein (CRMP) homology, and PSD-95, Discs large, zona occludens-1 binding domains. Both the zinc binding and CRMP homology domains are needed for dendrite patterning. In addition, cypin binds tubulin via its CRMP homology domain to promote microtubule assembly. Using a yeast two-hybrid screen of a rat brain cDNA library with cypin lacking the carboxyl terminal eight amino acids as bait, we identified snapin as a cypin binding partner. Here, we show by affinity chromatography and coimmunoprecipitation that the carboxyl-terminal coiled-coil domain (H2) of snapin is required for cypin binding. In addition, snapin binds to cypin's CRMP homology domain, which is where tubulin binds. We also show that snapin competes with tubulin for binding to cypin, resulting in decreased microtubule assembly. Subsequently, overexpression of snapin in primary cultures of hippocampal neurons results in decreased primary dendrites present on these neurons and increased probability of branching. Together, our data suggest that snapin regulates dendrite number in developing neurons by modulating cypin-promoted microtubule assembly.
This study was undertaken to assay the effect of lovastatin on the glycogen synthase kinase-3 beta (GSK-3β) and collapsin responsive mediator protein-2 (CRMP-2) signaling pathway and mossy fiber sprouting (MFS) in epileptic rats. MFS in the dentate gyrus (DG) is an important feature of temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) and is highly related to the severity and the frequency of spontaneous recurrent seizures. However, the molecular mechanism of MFS is mostly unknown. GSK-3β and CRMP-2 are the genes responsible for axonal growth and neuronal polarity in the hippocampus, therefore this pathway is a potential target to investigate MFS. Pilocarpine-induced status epilepticus animal model was taken as our researching material. Western blot, histological and electrophysiological techniques were used as the studying tools. The results showed that the expression level of GSK-3β and CRMP-2 were elevated after seizure induction, and the administration of lovastatin reversed this effect and significantly reduced the extent of MFS in both DG and CA3 region in the hippocampus. The alteration of expression level of GSK-3β and CRMP-2 after seizure induction proposes that GSK-3β and CRMP-2 are crucial for MFS and epiletogenesis. The fact that lovastatin reversed the expression level of GSK-3β and CRMP-2 indicated that GSK-3β and CRMP-2 are possible to be a novel mechanism of lovatstain to suppress MFS and revealed a new therapeutic target and researching direction for studying the mechanism of MFS and epileptogenesis.
The CRMP proteins were originally identified as mediators of Sema3A signaling and neuronal differentiation. Much has been learned about the mechanism by which CRMPs regulate cellular responses to Sema3A. In this review, the evidence for CRMP as a component of the Sema3A signaling cascade and the modulation of CRMP by plexin and phosphorylation are considered. In addition, current knowledge of the function of CRMP in a variety of cellular processes, including regulation of the cytoskeleton and endocytosis, is discussed in relationship to the mechanisms of axonal growth cone Sema3A response.
The secreted protein Sema3A (collapsin-1) was the first identified vertebrate semaphorin. Sema3A acts primarily as a repulsive axon guidance cue, and can cause a dramatic collapse of the growth cone lamellipodium. This process results from the redistribution of the F-actin cytoskeleton1,2 and endocytosis of the growth cone cell membrane.2–4 Neuropilin-1 (NP1) and members of the class A plexins (PlexA) form a Sema3A receptor complex, with NP1 serving as a high-affinity ligand binding partner, and PlexA transducing the signal into the cell via its large intracellular domain. Although the effect of Sema3A on growth cones was first described nearly 15 years ago, the intracellular signaling pathways that lead to the cellular effects have only recently begun to be understood. Monomeric G-proteins, various kinases, the redox protein, MICAL, and protein turnover have all been implicated in PlexA transduction. In addition, the collapsin-response-mediator protein (CRMP) family of cytosolic phosphoproteins plays a crucial role in Sema3A/NP1/PlexA signal transduction. Current knowledge regarding CRMP functions are reviewed here.
CRMP2, also known as DPYSL2/DRP2, Unc-33, Ulip or TUC2, is a cytosolic phosphoprotein that mediates axon/dendrite specification and axonal growth. Mapping the CRMP2 interactome has revealed previously unappreciated functions subserved by this protein. Together with its canonical roles in neurite growth and retraction and kinesin-dependent axonal transport, it is now known that CRMP2 interacts with numerous binding partners to affect microtubule dynamics; protein endocytosis and vesicular cycling, synaptic assembly, calcium channel regulation and neurotransmitter release. CRMP2 signaling is regulated by post-translational modifications, including glycosylation, oxidation, proteolysis and phosphorylation; the latter being a fulcrum of CRMP2 functions. Here, the putative roles of CRMP2 in a panoply of neurodegenerative, sensory and motor neuron, and central disorders are discussed and evidence is presented for therapeutic strategies targeting CRMP2 functions.
Alzheimer’s disease; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; axon elongation; CRMP2; CRMP2/CLN6/KLC4 signaling complex; CRMP2 hyperphosphorylation; excitotoxicity; multiple sclerosis; neuropathic pain; oxidative damage
CRMP proteins play critical regulatory roles during semaphorin-mediated neurite outgrowth, neuronal differentiation and death. Albeit having a high degree of structure and sequence resemblance to that of liver dihydropyrimidinase, purified rodent brain CRMPs do not hydrolyze dihydropyrimidinase substrates. Here we found that mouse CRMP3 has robust histone H4 deacetylase activity. During excitotoxicity-induced mouse neuronal death, calpain-cleaved, N-terminally truncated CRMP3 undergoes nuclear translocation to cause nuclear condensation through deacetylation of histone H4. CRMP3-mediated deacetylation of H4 leads to de-repression of the E2F1 gene transcription and E2F1-dependent neuronal death. These studies revealed a novel mechanism of CRMP3 in neuronal death. Together with previous well established bodies of literature that inhibition of histone deacetylase activity provides neuroprotection, we envisage that inhibition of CRMP3 may represent a novel therapeutic approach towards excitotoxicity-induced neuronal death.
The novel anti-epileptic drug lacosamide targets two proteins – voltage-gated sodium channels and collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP-2) – suggesting dual modes of action for lacosamide. We recently identified the neurite outgrowth and axonal guidance protein CRMP-2 as a novel partner and regulator of the presynaptic N-type voltage-gated Ca2+ channel (CaV2.2) [Brittain et al., J. Biol. Chem. 284: 31375–31390 (2009)]. Here we examined the effects of lacosamide on voltage-gated Ba2+ channels. Lacosamide did not affect Ba2+ currents via N- and P/Q- channels in rat hippocampal neurons or L-type Ca2+ channels in a mouse CNS neuronal cell line, respectively. N-type Ba2+ currents, augmented by CRMP-2 expression, were also unaffected by acute or chronic lacosamide exposure. These results establish that the anti-epileptic mode of action of lacosamide does not involve these voltage-gated Ca2+ channels.
CaV2.2/N-type Ca2+ channels; Hippocampal neurons; CAD cells; L-type Ca2+ channels; Lacosamide
Prion diseases are fatal neurodegenerative disorders that accompany an accumulation of the disease-associated form(s) of prion protein (PrPSc) in the central nervous system. The neuropathological changes in the brain begin with focal deposits of PrPSc, followed by pathomorphological abnormalities of axon terminal degeneration, synaptic loss, atrophy of dendritic trees, and eventual neuronal cell death in the lesions. However, the underlying molecular basis for these neuropathogenic abnormalities is not fully understood.
In a proteomic analysis of soluble proteins in the brains of mice challenged intracerebrally with scrapie prion (Obihiro I strain), we found that the amount of the full-length form of collapsin response mediator protein-2 (CRMP-2; 61 kDa) decreased in the late stages of the disease, while the amount of its truncated form (56 kDa) increased to comparable levels observed for the full-length form. Detailed analysis by liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry showed that the 56-kDa form (named CRMP-2-ΔC) lacked the sequence from serine518 to the C-terminus, including the C-terminal phosphorylation sites important for the regulation of axonal growth and axon-dendrite specification in developing neurons. The invariable size of the mRNA transcript in Northern blot analysis suggested that the truncation was due to post-translational proteolysis. By overexpression of CRMP-2-ΔC in primary cultured neurons, we observed the augmentation of the development of neurite branch tips to the same levels as for CRMP-2T514A/T555A, a non-phosphorylated mimic of the full-length protein. This suggests that the increased level of CRMP-2-ΔC in the brain modulates the integrity of neurons, and may be involved in the pathogenesis of the neuronal abnormalities observed in the late stages of the disease.
We identified the presence of CRMP-2-ΔC in the brain of a murine model of prion disease. Of note, C-terminal truncations of CRMP-2 have been recently observed in models for neurodegenerative disorders such as ischemia, traumatic brain injury, and Wallerian degeneration. While the structural identity of CRMP-2-ΔC in those models remains unknown, the present study should provide clues to the molecular pathology of degenerating neurons in prion diseases in connection with other neurodegenerative disorders.
Lanthionine ketimine (LK) represents a poorly-understood class of thioethers present in mammalian central nervous system. Previous work has indicated high-affinity interaction of LK with synaptosomal membrane protein(s) but neither LK binding partners nor specific bioactivities have been reported. In this study LK was chemically synthesized and used as an affinity agent to capture binding partners from mammalian brain lysate. Liquid chromatography with electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry (LC-ESI-MS/MS) of electrophoretically-separated, LK-bound proteins identified polypeptides implicated in axon remodeling or vesicle trafficking, and diseases including Alzheimer’s disease and schizophrenia: Collapsin response mediator protein-2/dihydropyrimidinase-like protein-2 (CRMP2/DRP2/DPYSL2); myelin basic protein (MBP); and syntaxin-binding protein-1 (STXBP1/Munc-18). Also identified was the recently discovered glutathione (GSH)-binding protein, lanthionine synthetase-like protein-1 (LanCL1). Functional consequences of LK:CRMP2 interactions were probed through immunoprecipitation studies using brain lysate wherein LK was found to increase CRMP2 co-precipitation with its partner neurofibromin-1 (NF1), but decreased CRMP2 co-precipitation with β-tubulin. Functional studies of NSC-34 motor neuron-like cells indicated that a cell-permeable LK-ester, LKE, was non-toxic and protective against oxidative challenge with H2O2. LKE-treated NSC-34 cells significantly increased neurite number and length in a serum concentration-dependent fashion, consistent with a CRMP2 interaction. Finally, LKE antagonized the activation of EOC-20 microglia by inflammogens. The results are discussed with reference to possible biochemical origins, paracrine functions, neurological significance and pharmacological potential of lanthionyl compounds.
lanthionine ketimine; LanCL1; Mannich reaction; glutathione; collapsin mediator response protein; neuroinflammation
Fps/Fes and Fer are the only two members of a distinct subclass of cytoplasmic protein tyrosine kinases. Fps/Fes was previously implicated in Semaphorin 3A (Sema3A)-induced growth cone collapse signaling in neurons from the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) through interaction with and phosphorylation of the Sema3A receptor component PlexinA1, and members of the collapsin response mediator protein (CRMP) family of microtubule regulators. However, the potential role of the closely related Fer kinase has not been examined.
Here we provide novel biochemical and genetic evidence that Fer plays a prominent role in microtubule regulation in DRG neurons in response to Sema3A. Although Fps/Fes and Fer were both expressed in neonatal brains and isolated DRGs, Fer was expressed at higher levels; and Fer, but not Fps/Fes kinase activity was detected in vivo. Fer also showed higher in vitro kinase activity toward tubulin, as an exogenous substrate; and this activity was higher when the kinases were isolated from perinatal relative to adult brain stages. CRMP2 was a substrate for both kinases in vitro, but both CRMP2 and PlexinA1 inhibited their autophosphorylation activities. Cultured mouse DRG neurons retracted their axons upon exposure to Sema3A, and this response was significantly diminished in Fer-deficient, but only slightly attenuated in Fps/Fes-deficient DRG neurons.
Fps/Fes and Fer are both capable of phosphorylating tubulin and the microtubule regulator CRMP2 in vitro; and their in vitro kinase activities were both inhibited by CRMP2 or PlexinA1, suggesting a possible regulatory interaction. Furthermore, Fer plays a more prominent role than Fps/Fes in regulating the axon retraction response to Sema3A in DRG neurons. Therefore, Fps/Fes and Fer may play important roles in developmental or regenerative axon pathfinding through signaling from Sema3A to the microtubule cytoskeleton.
Presynaptic N-type voltage-gated Ca2+ channels (Cav2.2) form part of an extensive macromolecular complex in the presynaptic terminal. Regulation of Cav2.2 is achieved via protein-protein interactions within the terminal and can directly impact transmitter release which is dependent on Ca2+ influx via these Cav2.2. We recently identified a novel Cav2.2 interacting partner—the collapsin response mediator protein (CRMP).1 CRMPs are a family of five proteins implicated in signal transduction of neurite outgrowth and axonal guidance. We showed that CRMP-2, a wellstudied member of this family, interacted with Cav2.2 via direct binding to cytoplasmic loops of Cav2.2. Depolarization enhanced the interaction. Further studies revealed that CRMP-2 facilitated an increase in Cav2.2 current density by inserting more Cav2.2 at the cell surface. As a consequence of CRMP-2-mediated increase in Ca2+ influx, release of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate was also increased. CRMP-2 localized to synapses where, surprisingly, its overexpression increased synapse size. We hypothesize that the CRMP-2-calcium channel interaction represents a novel mechanism for modulation of Ca2+ influx into nerve terminals and, hence, of synaptic strength. In this addendum, we further discuss the significance of this study and the possible implications to the field.
axonal outgrowth; CRMP-2; growth cone; presynaptic calcium channels; surface trafficking; Cav2.2; synaptic transmission
Chronic pain hypersensitivity depends on N-type voltage-gated calcium channels (CaV2.2). However, the use of CaV2.2 blockers in pain therapeutics is limited by side effects that result from inhibited physiological functions of these channels. Here we report suppression of both inflammatory and neuropathic hypersensitivity by inhibiting the binding of the axonal collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP-2) to CaV2.2, thus reducing channel function. A 15-amino acid peptide of CRMP-2 fused to the transduction domain of HIV TAT protein (TAT-CBD3) decreases neurotransmitter release from nociceptive dorsal root ganglion neurons, reduces meningeal blood flow, reduces nocifensive behavior induced by subcutaneous formalin injection or following corneal capsaicin application, and reverses neuropathic hypersensitivity produced by the antiretroviral drug 2’,3’-dideoxycytidine. TAT-CBD3 was mildly anxiolytic but innocuous on sensorimotor and cognitive functions and despair. By preventing CRMP-2-mediated enhancement of CaV2.2 function, TAT-CBD3 alleviates inflammatory and neuropathic hypersensitivity, an approach that may prove useful in managing clinical pain.