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The brain produces two brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) transcripts, with either short or long 3' untranslated regions (3' UTRs). The physiological significance of the two forms of mRNAs encoding the same protein is unknown. Here, we show that the short and long 3' UTR BDNF mRNAs are involved in different cellular functions. The short 3' UTR mRNAs(More)
The melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R) is critically involved in regulating energy balance, and obesity has been observed in mice with mutations in the gene for brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Here we report that BDNF is expressed at high levels in the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH) where its expression is regulated by nutritional state and by MC4R(More)
To examine functions of TrkB in the adult CNS, TrkB has been removed from neurons expressing CaMKII, primarily pyramidal neurons, using Cre-mediated recombination. A floxed trkB allele was designed so that neurons lacking TrkB express tau-beta-galactosidase. Following trkB deletion in pyramidal cells, their dendritic arbors are altered, and cortical layers(More)
The early pathophysiology of diabetic retinopathy and the involvement of neural and vascular malfunction are poorly understood. Glial cells provide structural and metabolic support for retinal neurons and blood vessels, and the cells become reactive in certain injury states. We therefore used the streptozotocin rat model of short-term diabetic retinopathy(More)
BDNF has pleiotropic effects on neuronal development and synaptic plasticity that underlie circuit formation and cognitive function. Recent breakthroughs reveal that neuronal activity regulates BDNF cell biology, including Bdnf transcription, dendritic targeting and trafficking of BDNF mRNA and protein, and secretion and extracellular conversion of proBDNF(More)
Dysfunction of inhibitory neurons in the prefrontal cortex (PFC), represented by decreased expression of GABA-related genes such as the 67 kDa isoform of glutamate decarboxylase (GAD67) and parvalbumin (PV), appears to contribute to cognitive deficits in subjects with schizophrenia. We investigated the involvement of signaling mediated by brain-derived(More)
The relationship between neuronal glutamate turnover, the glutamate/glutamine cycle and de novo glutamate synthesis was examined using two different model systems, freshly dissected rat retinas ex vivo and in vivo perfused rat brains. In the ex vivo rat retina, dual kinetic control of de novo glutamate synthesis by pyruvate carboxylation and transamination(More)
The three human alleles of apolipoprotein E (APOE) differentially influence outcome after CNS injury and affect one's risk of developing Alzheimer's disease (AD). It remains unclear how ApoE isoforms contribute to various AD-related pathological changes (e.g., amyloid plaques and synaptic and neuron loss). Here, we systematically examined whether apoE(More)
Huntington's disease (HD) is caused by an expansion of the polyglutamine tract at the N terminus of huntingtin. This mutation reduces levels of BDNF in the striatum, likely by inhibiting cortical Bdnf gene expression and anterograde transport of BDNF from the cerebral cortex to the striatum. Substantial evidence suggests that this reduction of striatal BDNF(More)
Huntington's disease (HD), a dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disorder characterized by relatively selective degeneration of striatal neurons, is caused by an expanded polyglutamine tract of the huntingtin (htt) protein. The htt mutation reduces levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the striatum, likely by inhibiting cortical BDNF gene(More)