HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
'Friend' protein keeps nerve signals in check

Among the many thousands of proteins in the cell, some are essential players while some are "hangers-on." The neuronal protein syntaxin is essential. Without it, you die. A more recently discovered protein called tomosyn hangs on, or binds, to syntaxin. Its Japanese discoverers named it tomosyn by combining tomo -- "friend" in Japanese -- with "syn" for syntaxin, to mean "friend of syntaxin."

Now a U.S.-based research team reports this friendly protein appears to play a key role in regulating the synaptic release of neurotransmitter chemicals, which suggests that it may also play a role in learning and memory.

Better understanding of the neurological function of this protein may lead to a better understanding of how synapses get stronger or weaker, and how that, in turn, affects memory formation and loss, says Janet Richmond, associate professor of biological sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

"It's amazing we remember things from as far back as our early childhood with the constant protein turnover going on in our brains," said Richmond. "So understanding how proteins function to control synaptic strength is really important."

Richmond and her colleagues used the soil nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans to study the function of tomosyn using a recording technique she developed to understand how synaptic proteins affect release of neurotransmitters at the nerve cell junctions. The lab's ability to study synaptic transmission was recently improved with the addition of high pressure freeze electron microscopy and immuno-gold staining, which together provide a clearer picture of where neurotransmitter-containing synaptic vesicles and proteins cluster.

Mutant worms lacking tomosyn were compared to normal worms to determine what effect, if any, the protein had on neuronal transmission. The observed effect is substantial -- the protein helps put a limit on the number of synaptic vesicles that become com
'"/>

Contact: Paul Francuch
francuch@uic.edu
312-996-3457
University of Illinois at Chicago
24-Jul-2006


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Penn researchers discover how key protein stops inflammation
2. UCF research links proteins, stem cells and potential Alzheimers treatment
3. Teamwork between 2 key proteins necessary for normal development and regulation of red blood cells
4. Discovery of new protein could provide new understanding of male fertility
5. Unlocking proteins from their cellular shell
6. Altering a protein makes mice less fearful
7. New research identifies anti-viral protein that may predict who might be at risk to develop lupus
8. MicroRNA works with Ago2 protein to regulate blood cell development
9. Carnegie Mellon scientists find key HIV protein makes cell membranes bend more easily
10. Call for EU to launch major project to map out all our proteins
11. New role for protein in fat cells may improve understanding of obesity and diabetes

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:8/26/2020)... ... 2020 , ... Catalent, the leading global provider of advanced ... and consumer health products, today announced that two Catalent Biologics experts will present ... between Aug. 31 – September 4, 2020. , On Wednesday, Sept. 2 at ...
(Date:8/23/2020)... THE WOODLANDS, Texas (PRWEB) , ... August 21, ... ... from Rigaku Corporation has been published and is now available ... on single crystal X-ray diffraction—serves the X-ray analysis community, presenting current news and ...
(Date:8/21/2020)... ... August 19, 2020 , ... “How can we help?”, asks ... Salivary Bioscience for more than twenty years. Together with Douglas Granger, Ph.D., founder ... Bioscience: Foundations of Interdisciplinary Saliva Research and Applications ," and Steven Granger, Ph.D., ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/15/2020)... ... ... True Terpenes , the leading platform for terpene innovation, research and development, ... medical potential of terpenes and the potential entourage effect , where the benefits ... on expanding the recently launched line of effects-based terpenes - Terpology by Dr. ...
(Date:8/12/2020)... ... August 11, 2020 , ... ... validation engineering firm, is making available for free its new white paper ... concurrent transport simulation testing into today’s biologics licensing application (BLA). In response, ...
(Date:8/3/2020)... ... August 03, 2020 , ... ERT, the ... CEO has been named one of the 100 most inspiring individuals in the ... honorees are selected based on how they have inspired their colleagues and affected ...
(Date:7/31/2020)... ... July 29, 2020 , ... G-CON Manufacturing, the leader ... tagline, “BUILDING FOR LIFE.” The adoption of this taglines comes at a time ... track capacity to provide patients with urgently needed vaccines and other lifesaving pharmaceutical ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: