Kainate receptors are widely reported to regulate the release of neurotransmitter in the CNS, but the mechanisms involved remain controversial. Previous studies have found that the kainate receptor agonist ATPA, which selectively activates GluK5-containing kainate receptors, depresses glutamate release at Schaffer-collateral synapses in the hippocampus. In the present study, we provide pharmacological evidence that this depressant effect is mediated by GluK5-containing heteromers, but is distinct from a similar depressant effect engaged by the kainate receptor agonist domoate. The depressant effect of ATPA is insensitive to antagonists for GABAA, GABAB, and adenosine receptors, and is also unaffected by lowering the release probability by reducing extracellular calcium. However, the effect of ATPA is partly occluded by prior activation of GABAB receptors and completely occluded by prior activation of adenosine receptors, suggesting a mechanistic convergence of heteromeric GluK5 kainate receptor signaling with GABAB receptors and adenosine receptors. The effects of domoate are partially occluded by both adenosine and GABAB receptor agonists, indicating at least a partial convergence of GluK5-lacking kainate receptor signaling with these other pathways. The depressant effect of ATPA is not blocked by inhibition of serine/threonine protein kinases. These results suggest that ATPA and domoate inhibit glutamate release through mechanisms that converge with those of classical metabotropic receptor agonists, although they do so through different receptors.
- Glutamate release
- Kainate receptor
- Synaptic terminals
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience