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The G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) Proteolysis Site (GPS) of cell-adhesion GPCRs and polycystic kidney disease (PKD) proteins constitutes a highly conserved autoproteolysis sequence, but its catalytic mechanism remains unknown. Here, we show that unexpectedly the ∼40-residue GPS motif represents an integral part of a much larger ∼320-residue domain that(More)
Neuroligins (NL) are postsynaptic cell adhesion molecules that are thought to specify synapse properties. Previous studies showed that mutant mice carrying an autism-associated point mutation in NL3 exhibit social interaction deficits, enhanced inhibitory synaptic function and increased staining of inhibitory synaptic puncta without changes in overall(More)
The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is formed by brain capillary endothelial cells. These cells have at least three properties which distinguish them from their peripheral counterparts: (1) tight junctions (TJs) of extremely low permeability; (2) low rates of fluid-phase endocytosis; (3) specific transport and carrier molecules. In combination, these features(More)
Neuroligins (NLs) are a family of neural cell-adhesion molecules that are involved in excitatory/inhibitory synapse specification. Multiple members of the NL family (including NL1) and their binding partners have been linked to cases of human autism and mental retardation. We have now characterized NL1-deficient mice in autism- and mental(More)
C1q-like genes (C1ql1-C1ql4) encode small, secreted proteins that are expressed in differential patterns in the brain but whose receptors and functions remain unknown. BAI3 protein, in contrast, is a member of the cell-adhesion class of G protein-coupled receptors that are expressed at high levels in the brain but whose ligands have thus far escaped(More)
Etiology and pathogenesis of sarcopenia, the progressive decline in skeletal muscle mass and strength that occurs with aging, are still poorly understood. We recently found that overexpression of the neural serine protease neurotrypsin in motoneurons resulted in the degeneration of their neuromuscular junctions (NMJ) within days. Therefore, we wondered(More)
OBJECTIVE Spinal neuronal function is impaired after a severe spinal cord injury (SCI) and can be assessed by the analysis of spinal reflex (SR) behavior. We applied transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation (tsDCS) and locomotor activity, to determine whether the excitability of spinal neuronal circuitries underlying locomotion can be modulated(More)
Gait and balance training is an essential ingredient for locomotor rehabilitation of patients with neurological impairments. Robotic overhead support systems may help these patients train, for example by relieving them of part of their body weight. However, there are only very few systems that provide support during overground gait, and these suffer from(More)
Locomotor activity and spinal reflexes (SRs) show common features in different mammals, including humans. Here we report the time-course of the development of locomotor activity and SRs after a complete spinal cord injury in humans. SRs evoked by tibial nerve stimulation were studied, as was the leg muscle electromyography activity evoked by mechanically(More)
Neuroligins, first discovered in rat brain, form a family of three synaptically enriched membrane proteins. Using reverse transcription-PCR of human brain polyadenylated RNA and extensive database searches, we identified the human homologues of the three rat neuroligins and a cDNA encoding a fourth member, which we named neuroligin 4. Neuroligin 4 has(More)