SciCombinator

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Concept: Adenosine A1 receptor

171

Methotrexate (MTX) exerts at least part of its anti-inflammatory effects through adenosine receptors (ADOR). The aims of this study were to determine the expression of all four adenosine receptor genes (ADORA1, ADORA2A, ADORA2B, ADORA3 and ADORA3variant) in rheumatoid synovial tissue and any influence of MTX exposure on this expression. Furthermore, we investigated whether polymorphisms within ADORA3 were associated with response and/or adverse effects associated with MTX.

Concepts: Rheumatoid arthritis, Adenosine receptor, Adenosine, Adenosine A2A receptor, Adenosine A1 receptor, Adenosine receptors

38

The consumption of caffeine (an adenosine receptor antagonist) correlates inversely with depression and memory deterioration, and adenosine A2A receptor (A2AR) antagonists emerge as candidate therapeutic targets because they control aberrant synaptic plasticity and afford neuroprotection. Therefore we tested the ability of A2AR to control the behavioral, electrophysiological, and neurochemical modifications caused by chronic unpredictable stress (CUS), which alters hippocampal circuits, dampens mood and memory performance, and enhances susceptibility to depression. CUS for 3 wk in adult mice induced anxiogenic and helpless-like behavior and decreased memory performance. These behavioral changes were accompanied by synaptic alterations, typified by a decrease in synaptic plasticity and a reduced density of synaptic proteins (synaptosomal-associated protein 25, syntaxin, and vesicular glutamate transporter type 1), together with an increased density of A2AR in glutamatergic terminals in the hippocampus. Except for anxiety, for which results were mixed, CUS-induced behavioral and synaptic alterations were prevented by (i) caffeine (1 g/L in the drinking water, starting 3 wk before and continued throughout CUS); (ii) the selective A2AR antagonist KW6002 (3 mg/kg, p.o.); (iii) global A2AR deletion; and (iv) selective A2AR deletion in forebrain neurons. Notably, A2AR blockade was not only prophylactic but also therapeutically efficacious, because a 3-wk treatment with the A2AR antagonist SCH58261 (0.1 mg/kg, i.p.) reversed the mood and synaptic dysfunction caused by CUS. These results herald a key role for synaptic A2AR in the control of chronic stress-induced modifications and suggest A2AR as candidate targets to alleviate the consequences of chronic stress on brain function.

Concepts: Brain, Receptor, Hippocampus, Receptor antagonist, Glutamate transporter, Adenosine receptor, Adenosine A2A receptor, Adenosine A1 receptor

28

Migraine is the third most prevalent disease on the planet, yet our understanding of its mechanisms and pathophysiology is surprisingly incomplete. Recent studies have built upon decades of evidence that adenosine, a purine nucleoside that can act as a neuromodulator, is involved in pain transmission and sensitization. Clinical evidence and rodent studies have suggested that adenosine signaling also plays a critical role in migraine headache. This is further supported by the widespread use of caffeine, an adenosine receptor antagonist, in several headache treatments. In this review, we highlight evidence that supports the involvement of adenosine signaling in different forms of headache, headache triggers, and basic headache physiology. This evidence supports adenosine A2A receptors as a critical adenosine receptor subtype involved in headache pain. Adenosine A2A receptor signaling may contribute to headache via the modulation of intracellular Cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) production or 5' AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activity in neurons and glia to affect glutamatergic synaptic transmission within the brainstem. This evidence supports the further study of adenosine signaling in headache and potentially illuminates it as a novel therapeutic target for migraine.

Concepts: DNA, Signal transduction, Adenosine triphosphate, Receptor, Caffeine, Adenosine receptor, Adenosine A2A receptor, Adenosine A1 receptor

28

The complex pathogenesis of anxiety and panic disorder in particular has been suggested to be influenced by genetic factors such as the adenosine A2A receptor gene (ADORA2A) 1976T>C polymorphism (rs5751876) as well as neuropsychological factors such as early information processing deficits. In 114 healthy individuals (males=57, females=57) controlled for anxiety sensitivity (AS), a multi-level risk model of the development of anxiety was applied: Genetic (ADORA2A 1976T>C variant) and biochemical (300mg of caffeine citrate vs. placebo) factors were hypothesized to influence early information processing as measured by the prepulse inhibition/facilitation paradigm (stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) of 60, 120, 240, 480 and 2000ms between prepulses and startle stimuli). A fourfold interaction of genotype, intervention, gender, and SOAs was discerned. Stratification by SOAs revealed that at 120ms and 240ms SOAs in the caffeine condition, PPI was impaired in female ADORA2A 1976TT risk genotype carriers as compared to male ADORA2A 1976TT homozygotes, while no significant effects were observed in the ADORA2A 1976CC/CT non-risk genotype or placebo group. Only in high anxiety sensitive probands, a significant intervention effect was discerned with impaired prepulse facilitation (PPF) due to caffeine. The present results point to an impaired ability to selectively process very early information and to gate irrelevant sensory information, respectively, in female ADORA2A 1976TT homozygotes in response to caffeine, providing further evidence for the adenosinergic system to be involved in the pathogenesis of anxiety.

Concepts: Genetics, Sensory system, Caffeine, Panic disorder, Adenosine receptor, Panic attack, Adenosine A1 receptor, Prepulse inhibition

28

The question as to whether A3 adenosine receptor (A3AR) agonists, N (6)-(3-iodobenzyl)-adenosine-5'-N- methyluronamide (IB-MECA) and 2-chloro-N (6)-(3-iodobenzyl)-adenosine-5'-N-methyluronamide (Cl-IB-MECA), could exert cytotoxic effects at high concentrations with or without the involvement of A3AR has been a controversial issue for a long time. The initial findings suggesting that A3AR plays a crucial role in the induction of cell death upon treatment with micromolar concentrations of IB-MECA or Cl-IB-MECA were revised, however, the direct and unequivocal evidence is still missing. Therefore, the sensitivity of Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells transfected with human recombinant A3AR (A3-CHO) and their counter partner wild-type CHO cells, which do not express any of adenosine receptors, to micromolar concentrations of IB-MECA and Cl-IB-MECA was studied. We observed that IB-MECA and Cl-IB-MECA exhibited a strong inhibitory effect on cell proliferation due to the blockage of cell cycle progression at G1/S and G2/M transitions in both A3-CHO and CHO cells. Further analysis revealed that IB-MECA and Cl-IB-MECA attenuated the Erk1/2 signalling irrespectively to A3AR expression. In addition, Cl-IB-MECA induced massive cell death mainly with hallmarks of a necrosis in both cell lines. In contrast, IB-MECA affected cell viability only slightly independently of A3AR expression. IB-MECA induced cell death that exhibited apoptotic hallmarks. In general, the sensitivity of A3-CHO cells to micromolar concentrations of IB-MECA and Cl-IB-MECA was somewhat, but not significantly, higher than that observed in the CHO cells. These results strongly suggest that IB-MECA and Cl-IB-MECA exert cytotoxic effects at micromolar concentrations independently of A3AR expression.

Concepts: Gene, Cell nucleus, Cell division, Cell culture, Chinese hamster ovary cell, Adenosine receptor, Adenosine A1 receptor, Adenosine A3 receptor

14

Adenosine/adenosine receptor-mediated signaling has been implicated in the development of various ischemic diseases, including ischemic retinopathies. Here, we show that the adenosine A2a receptor (ADORA2A) promotes hypoxia-inducible transcription factor-1 (HIF-1)-dependent endothelial cell glycolysis, which is crucial for pathological angiogenesis in proliferative retinopathies. Adora2a expression is markedly increased in the retina of mice with oxygen-induced retinopathy (OIR). Endothelial cell-specific, but not macrophage-specific Adora2a deletion decreases key glycolytic enzymes and reduces pathological neovascularization in the OIR mice. In human primary retinal microvascular endothelial cells, hypoxia induces the expression of ADORA2A by activating HIF-2α. ADORA2A knockdown decreases hypoxia-induced glycolytic enzyme expression, glycolytic flux, and endothelial cell proliferation, sprouting and tubule formation. Mechanistically, ADORA2A activation promotes the transcriptional induction of glycolytic enzymes via ERK- and Akt-dependent translational activation of HIF-1α protein. Taken together, these findings advance translation of ADORA2A as a therapeutic target in the treatment of proliferative retinopathies and other diseases dependent on pathological angiogenesis.Pathological angiogenesis in the retina is a major cause of blindness. Here the authors show that adenosine receptor A2A drives pathological angiogenesis in the oxygen-induced retinopathy mouse model by promoting glycolysis in endothelial cells via the ERK/Akt/HIF-1α pathway, thereby suggesting new therapeutic targets for disease treatment.

Concepts: Protein, Gene, Adenosine triphosphate, Adenosine receptor, Glycolysis, Adenosine A2A receptor, Adenosine A1 receptor, CGS-21680

6

Astrocytes express a variety of G protein-coupled receptors and might influence cognitive functions, such as learning and memory. However, the roles of astrocytic Gs-coupled receptors in cognitive function are not known. We found that humans with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) had increased levels of the Gs-coupled adenosine receptor A2A in astrocytes. Conditional genetic removal of these receptors enhanced long-term memory in young and aging mice and increased the levels of Arc (also known as Arg3.1), an immediate-early gene that is required for long-term memory. Chemogenetic activation of astrocytic Gs-coupled signaling reduced long-term memory in mice without affecting learning. Like humans with AD, aging mice expressing human amyloid precursor protein (hAPP) showed increased levels of astrocytic A2A receptors. Conditional genetic removal of these receptors enhanced memory in aging hAPP mice. Together, these findings establish a regulatory role for astrocytic Gs-coupled receptors in memory and suggest that AD-linked increases in astrocytic A2A receptor levels contribute to memory loss.

Concepts: Alzheimer's disease, Psychology, Signal transduction, Cognition, Memory, Metabotropic glutamate receptor, Adenosine receptor, Adenosine A1 receptor

4

The amygdala plays key roles in fear and anxiety. Studies of the amygdala have largely focused on neuronal function and connectivity. Astrocytes functionally interact with neurons, but their role in the amygdala remains largely unknown. We show that astrocytes in the medial subdivision of the central amygdala (CeM) determine the synaptic and behavioral outputs of amygdala circuits. To investigate the role of astrocytes in amygdala-related behavior and identify the underlying synaptic mechanisms, we used exogenous or endogenous signaling to selectively activate CeM astrocytes. Astrocytes depressed excitatory synapses from basolateral amygdala via A1 adenosine receptor activation and enhanced inhibitory synapses from the lateral subdivision of the central amygdala via A2A receptor activation. Furthermore, astrocytic activation decreased the firing rate of CeM neurons and reduced fear expression in a fear-conditioning paradigm. Therefore, we conclude that astrocyte activity determines fear responses by selectively regulating specific synapses, which indicates that animal behavior results from the coordinated activity of neurons and astrocytes.

Concepts: Nervous system, Action potential, Synapse, Neurotransmitter, Gap junction, Adenosine receptor, Postsynaptic potential, Adenosine A1 receptor

3

Consumption of caffeine, a non-selective adenosine A2A receptor (A2AR) antagonist, reduces the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in humans and mitigates both amyloid and Tau burden in transgenic mouse models. However, the impact of selective A2AR blockade on the progressive development of AD-related lesions and associated memory impairments has not been investigated. In the present study, we removed the gene encoding A2AR from THY-Tau22 mice and analysed the subsequent effects on both pathological (Tau phosphorylation and aggregation, neuro-inflammation) and functional impairments (spatial learning and memory, hippocampal plasticity, neurotransmitter profile). We found that deleting A2ARs protect from Tau pathology-induced deficits in terms of spatial memory and hippocampal long-term depression. These effects were concomitant with a normalization of the hippocampal glutamate/gamma-amino butyric acid ratio, together with a global reduction in neuro-inflammatory markers and a decrease in Tau hyperphosphorylation. Additionally, oral therapy using a specific A2AR antagonist (MSX-3) significantly improved memory and reduced Tau hyperphosphorylation in THY-Tau22 mice. By showing that A2AR genetic or pharmacological blockade improves the pathological phenotype in a Tau transgenic mouse model, the present data highlight A2A receptors as important molecular targets to consider against AD and Tauopathies.Molecular Psychiatry advance online publication, 2 December 2014; doi:10.1038/mp.2014.151.

Concepts: Alzheimer's disease, Time, Gene, Memory, Hippocampus, Adenosine receptor, Adenosine A2A receptor, Adenosine A1 receptor

2

We have previously shown that casein kinase 2 (CK2) negatively regulates dopamine D1- and adenosine A2a receptor signaling in the striatum. Ablation of CK2 in D1-receptor-positive striatal neurons caused enhanced locomotion and exploration at baseline, whereas CK2 ablation in D2 receptor-positive neurons caused increased locomotion after treatment with A2a antagonist, caffeine. Since both, D1 and A2a receptors, play major roles in the cellular responses to L-DOPA in the striatum, these findings prompted us to examine the impact of CK2 ablation on the effects of L-DOPA treatment in the unilateral 6-OHDA lesioned mouse model of Parkinson’s disease. We report here that knockout of CK2 in striatonigral neurons reduces the severity of L-DOPA induced dyskinesia (LID), a finding that correlates with lowered pERK but unchanged pPKA substrate levels in D1 medium spiny neurons as well as in cholinergic interneurons. In contrast, lack of CK2 in striatopallidal neurons enhances LID and ERK phosphorylation. Co-administration of caffeine with a low dose of L-DOPA reduces dyskinesia in animals with striatopallidal knockout to wildtype levels, suggesting a dependence on adenosine receptor activity. We also detect reduced Golf levels in the striatonigral but not in the striatopallidal knockout in response to L-DOPA treatment.Our work shows, in a rodent model of PD, that treatment-induced dyskinesia and striatal ERK activation are bi-directionally modulated by ablating CK2 in D1- or D2-positive projection neurons, in male and female mice. The results reveal that CK2 regulates signaling events critical to LID in each of the two main populations of striatal neurons.Significance StatementTo date, L-DOPA is the most effective treatment for PD. Over time, however, its efficacy decreases, and side effects including L-DOPA induced dyskinesia (LID) increase, affecting up to 78% of patients within ten years of therapy (Hauser et al., 2007). It is understood that supersensitivity of the striatonigral pathway underlies LID, however D2 agonists were also shown to induce LID (Bezard et al., 2001; Delfino et al., 2004). Our work implicates a novel player in the expression of LID, the kinase CK2: Knockout of CK2 in striatonigral and striatopallidal neurons has opposing effects on LID. The bi-directional modulation of dyskinesia reveals a central role for CK2 in striatal physiology and indicates that both pathways contribute to LID.

Concepts: Signal transduction, Parkinson's disease, Neurotransmitter, Striatum, Dopamine, Adenosine receptor, Adenosine A2A receptor, Adenosine A1 receptor