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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(4), 896; doi:10.3390/ijms18040896

Synaptic Homeostasis and Its Immunological Disturbance in Neuromuscular Junction Disorders

Neurological Center, Kanazawa-Nishi Hospital, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 920-0025, Japan
Academic Editor: David Beeson
Received: 21 February 2017 / Revised: 4 April 2017 / Accepted: 19 April 2017 / Published: 24 April 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Neuromuscular Synapse in Health and Disease)
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Abstract

In the neuromuscular junction, postsynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) clustering, trans-synaptic communication and synaptic stabilization are modulated by the molecular mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity. The synaptic functions are based presynaptically on the active zone architecture, synaptic vesicle proteins, Ca2+ channels and synaptic vesicle recycling. Postsynaptically, they are based on rapsyn-anchored nAChR clusters, localized sensitivity to ACh, and synaptic stabilization via linkage to the extracellular matrix so as to be precisely opposed to the nerve terminal. Focusing on neural agrin, Wnts, muscle-specific tyrosine kinase (a mediator of agrin and Wnts signalings and regulator of trans-synaptic communication), low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 4 (the receptor of agrin and Wnts and participant in retrograde signaling), laminin-network (including muscle-derived agrin), extracellular matrix proteins (participating in the synaptic stabilization) and presynaptic receptors (including muscarinic and adenosine receptors), we review the functional structures of the synapse by making reference to immunological pathogenecities in postsynaptic disease, myasthenia gravis. The synapse-related proteins including cortactin, coronin-6, caveolin-3, doublecortin, R-spondin 2, amyloid precursor family proteins, glia cell-derived neurotrophic factor and neurexins are also discussed in terms of their possible contribution to efficient synaptic transmission at the neuromuscular junction. View Full-Text
Keywords: neuromuscular junction; agrin; Wnts; muscle-specific tyrosine kinase; low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 4; laminins; myasthenia gravis; nicotinic acetylcholine receptor; muscarinic acetylcholine receptor; adenosine receptor neuromuscular junction; agrin; Wnts; muscle-specific tyrosine kinase; low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 4; laminins; myasthenia gravis; nicotinic acetylcholine receptor; muscarinic acetylcholine receptor; adenosine receptor
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Takamori, M. Synaptic Homeostasis and Its Immunological Disturbance in Neuromuscular Junction Disorders. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18, 896.

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