PubMed 21613774

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: Kir6.2

Title: Developmental expression and distribution of GABA(A) receptor α1-, α3- and β2-subunits in pig brain.

Authors: Viskasari P Kalanjati, Stephanie M Miller, Zoe Ireland, Paul B Colditz, Stella T Bjorkman

Journal, date & volume: Dev. Neurosci., 2011 , 33, 99-109

PubMed link:

The principal function of the γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) system in the adult brain is inhibition; however, in the neonatal brain, GABA provides much of the excitatory drive. As the brain develops, transmembrane chloride gradients change and the inhibitory role of GABA is initiated and continues throughout juvenile and adult life. Previous studies have shown that GABA(A) receptor subunit expression is developmentally regulated, and it is thought that the change in GABA function from excitation to inhibition corresponds to the changeover in expression of 'immature' to 'mature' subunit isoforms. We examined the protein expression pattern and distribution of GABA type A (GABA(A)) receptor α1-, α3- and β2-subunits in the parietal cortex and hippocampus of the developing piglet brain. Four perinatal ages were studied; 14 days preterm (P-14), 10 days preterm (P-10), day of birth (P0) and at postnatal day 7 (P7). Animals were obtained by either caesarean section or spontaneous birth. Protein expression levels and subunit localization were analysed by Western blotting and immunohistochemistry, respectively. In the cortex and hippocampus, GABA(A) receptor α1-subunit showed greatest expression at P7 when compared to all other age groups (p < 0.05). In contrast, α3 expression in the cortex was elevated in preterm brain, peaking at P0, followed by a significant reduction by P7 (p < 0.05); a similar trend was observed in the hippocampus. GABA(A) receptor β2-subunit protein expression appeared relatively constant across all time points studied in both the cortex and hippocampus. Immunolabelling of the α1-, α3- and β2-subunits was observed throughout all cortical layers at every age. GABA(A) receptor α3-subunit appeared to show specific localization to layers V and VI whilst labelling for the β2-subunit was observed in layer IV. In the hippocampus of all animals, the α1- and β2-subunits were shown to immunolabel various cells and processes in the dentate gyrus (DG), CA1 and CA3; the α3-subunit was barely observed except at the stratum moleculare of the DG. We report for the first time the ontogenesis of GABA(A) receptor subunits α1, α3 and β2 in the perinatal pig brain.