Calcium signaling mechanisms disrupt the cytoskeleton of primary astrocytes and neurons exposed to diphenylditelluride.
The activation of group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs), which are coupled with Gq-protein, initiates a variety physiological responses in different types of cells. While Gq-protein-coupled receptors can upregulate N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor function, group I mGluR-mediated regulations of NMDA receptor function are not fully understood. To determine biochemical roles of group I mGluRs in the regulation of the NMDA receptor, we have investigated changes in tyrosine phosphorylation of NMDA receptor subunits NR2A and NR2B induced by a selective mGluR5 agonist, (RS)-chloro-5-hydroxyphenylglycine (CHPG) in hippocampal neuronal cultures. Activation of mGluR5 by CHPG increased active-forms of Src. CHPG also enhanced tyrosine phosphorylation of NR2A and NR2B in hippocampal neuronal cultures. In addition, NMDA-induced cell death was enhanced by CHPG-induced mGluR5 stimulation at the concentration, which increased tyrosine phosphorylation of Src and NR2A/2B but did not induce cell death. This effect was inhibited by selective mGluR5 antagonist 2-methyl-6-(phenylethynyl)pyridine (MPEP). The results suggest that in hippocampal neurons, mGluR5 may regulate NMDA receptor activity, involving tyrosine phosphorylation of NR2A and NR2B and may be involved in NMDA receptor-mediated cell injury.