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Developmental and activity induced downregulation of the nogo receptor in the rat

, : Developmental and activity induced downregulation of the nogo receptor in the rat. Society for Neuroscience Abstract Viewer & Itinerary Planner : Abstract No 333 7

Nogo-A (reticulon 4A) is a neurite growth inhibiting protein that is expressed by oligodendrocytes and neurons, but absent in astrocytes and Schwann cells. Growth inhibition is probably accomplished by contact between the extracellular domain of Nogo-A and the Nogo-66 receptor (NgR). We have performed in situ hybridization using a specific oliginucleotide probe directed against rat NgR mRNA to study gene activity patterns in fetal, postnatal and adult animals. NgR mRNA expression was widespread in the fetal and adult rat brain. Interestingly, NgR mRNA expression in the rat spinal cord was shut down during the first postnatal week and remained below the detection level of our method thereafter. Strikingly, kainic acid (10 mg/kg i.p.) transiently, rapidly and strongly down-regulated Nogo-R mRNA levels in the dentate gyrus, followed by hippocampus, amygdala and neocortex while BDNF mRNA was upregulated in corresponding regions. These results suggest a role for the Nogo system in plasticity and learning: Perhaps axon terminals down-regulate cell adhesion molecules to detach and NgR to become temporarily insensitive to Nogo. This allows plastic responses, as directed by local BDNF increases, after which synapses are locked in position again by reversal of these three key regulatory principles.


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