Rapid induction of dendritic spine morphogenesis by trans-synaptic ephrinB-EphB receptor activation of the Rho-GEF kalirin

Peter Penzes, Alexander Beeser, Jonathan Chernoff, Martin R. Schiller, Betty A. Eipper, Richard E. Mains, Richard L. Huganir*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

374 Scopus citations

Abstract

The morphogenesis of dendritic spines, the major sites of excitatory synaptic transmission in the brain, is important in synaptic development and plasticity. We have identified an ephrinB-EphB receptor trans-synaptic signaling pathway which regulates the morphogenesis and maturation of dendritic spines in hippocampal neurons. Activation of the EphB receptor induces translocation of the Rho-GEF kalirin to synapses and activation of Rac1 and its effector PAK. Overexpression of dominant-negative EphB receptor, catalytically inactive kalirin, or dominant-negative Rac1, or inhibition of PAK eliminates ephrin-induced spine development. This novel signal transduction pathway may be critical for the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton controlling spine morphogenesis during development and plasticity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)263-274
Number of pages12
JournalNeuron
Volume37
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 23 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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