Semiquantitative proteomic analysis of rat forebrain postsynaptic density fractions by mass spectrometry

Junmin Peng*, Myung Jong Kim, Dongmei Cheng, Due M. Duong, Steven P. Gygi, Morgan Sheng

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

389 Scopus citations


The postsynaptic density (PSD) of central excitatory synapses plays a key role in postsynaptic signal transduction and contains a high concentration of glutamate receptors and associated scaffold and signaling proteins. We report here a comprehensive analysis of purified PSD fractions by liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). We identified 374 different proteins that copurified with the PSD structure and discovered thirteen phosphorylated sites from eight proteins. These proteins were classified into numerous functional groups, implying that the signaling pathways in the PSD are complex and diverse. Furthermore, using quantitative mass spectrometry, we measured the molar concentration and relative stoichiometries of a number of glutamate receptor subunits and scaffold proteins in the postsynaptic density. Thus this proteomic study reveals crucial information about molecular abundance as well as molecular diversity in the PSD, and provides a basis for further studies on the molecular mechanisms of synaptic function and plasticity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21003-21011
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number20
StatePublished - May 14 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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