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Mechanosensory signaling mediated by mechanically gated ion channels constitutes the basis for the senses of touch and hearing and contributes fundamentally to the development and homeostasis of all organisms. Despite this profound importance in biology, little is known of the molecular identities or functional requirements of mechanically gated ion(More)
Aging is a risk factor for the development of adult-onset neurodegenerative diseases. Although some of the molecular pathways regulating longevity and stress resistance in lower organisms are defined (i.e., those activating the transcriptional regulators DAF-16 and HSF-1 in Caenorhabditis elegans), their relevance to mammals and disease susceptibility are(More)
To the surprise of many, studies of molecular mechanisms of touch transduction and analyses of epithelial Na+ transport have converged to define a new class of ion channel subunits. Based on the names of the first two identified subfamilies, the Caenorhabditis elegans degenerins and the vertebrate epithelial amiloride-sensitive Na+ channel, this ion channel(More)
To ensure precise neurotransmission and prevent neurotoxic accumulation, l-glutamate (Glu), the major excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain, is cleared from the synapse by glutamate transporters (GluTs). The molecular components of Glu synapses are highly conserved between Caenorhabditis elegans and mammals, yet the absence of synaptic insulation in C.(More)
In stroke and several neurodegenerative diseases, malfunction of glutamate (Glu) transporters causes Glu accumulation and triggers excitotoxicity. Many details on the cascade of events in the neurodegenerative process remain unclear. As molecular components of glutamatergic synapses are assembled in Caenorhabditis elegans and as many fundamental cellular(More)
Excitotoxicity (the toxic overstimulation of neurons by the excitatory transmitter Glutamate) is a central process in widespread neurodegenerative conditions such as brain ischemia and chronic neurological diseases. Many mechanisms have been suggested to mediate excitotoxicity, but their significance across diverse excitotoxic scenarios remains unclear.(More)
During ischemic stroke, malfunction of excitatory amino acid transporters and reduced synaptic clearance causes accumulation of Glutamate (Glu) and excessive stimulation of postsynaptic neurons, which can lead to their degeneration by excitotoxicity. The balance between cell death-promoting (neurotoxic) and survival-promoting (neuroprotective) signaling(More)
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