6 research outputs found

    In Vitro Effects of Chronic Spirolide Treatment on Human Neuronal Stem Cell Differentiation and Cholinergic System Development

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    Spirolides (SPX) are marine toxins, produced by dinoflagellates that act as potent antagonists of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. These compounds are not toxic for humans, and since there are no reports of human intoxications caused by this group of toxins they are not yet currently regulated in Europe. Currently 13-desmethyl spirolide C, 13,19-didesmethyl spirolide C, and 20-methyl spirolide G are commercially available as reference materials. Previous work in our laboratory has demonstrated that after 4 days of treatment of primary mice cortical neurons with 13-desmethyl spirolide C, the compound ameliorated the glutamate induced toxicity and increased acetylcholine levels and the expression of the acetylcholine synthesizing enzyme being useful both in vitro and in vivo to decrease the brain pathology associated with Alzheimer’s disease. In this work, we aimed to extend the study of the neuronal effects of spirolides in human neuronal cells. To this end, human neuronal progenitor cells CTX0E16 were employed to evaluate the in vitro effect of spirolides on neuronal development. The results presented here indicate that long-term exposure (30 days) of human neuronal stem cells to SPX compounds, at concentrations up to 50 nM, ameliorated the MPP<sup>+</sup>-induced neurotoxicity and increased the expression of neuritic and dendritic markers, the levels of the choline acetyltransferase enzyme and the protein levels of the α7 subunit of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. These effects are presumably due to the previously described interaction of these compounds with nicotinic receptors containing both α7 and α4 subunits. All together, these data emphasize the idea that SPX could be attractive lead molecules against neurodegenerative disorders

    Differential Effects of Ciguatoxin and Maitotoxin in Primary Cultures of Cortical Neurons

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    Ciguatoxins (CTXs) and maitotoxins (MTXs) are polyether ladder shaped toxins derived from the dinoflagellate <i>Gambierdiscus toxicus</i>. Despite the fact that MTXs are 3 times larger than CTXs, part of the structure of MTXs resembles that of CTXs. To date, the synthetic ciguatoxin, CTX 3C has been reported to activate voltage-gated sodium channels, whereas the main effect of MTX is inducing calcium influx into the cell leading to cell death. However, there is a lack of information regarding the effects of these toxins in a common cellular model. Here, in order to have an overview of the main effects of these toxins in mice cortical neurons, we examined the effects of MTX and the synthetic ciguatoxin CTX 3C on the main voltage dependent ion channels in neurons, sodium, potassium, and calcium channels as well as on membrane potential, cytosolic calcium concentration ([Ca<sup>2+</sup>]<sub>c</sub>), intracellular pH (pH<sub>i</sub>), and neuronal viability. Regarding voltage-gated ion channels, neither CTX 3C nor MTX affected voltage-gated calcium or potassium channels, but while CTX 3C had a large effect on voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSC) by shifting the activation and inactivation curves to more hyperpolarized potentials and decreasing peak sodium channel amplitude, MTX, at 5 nM, had no effect on VGSC activation and inactivation but decreased peak sodium current amplitude. Other major differences between both toxins were the massive calcium influx and intracellular acidification produced by MTX but not by CTX 3C. Indeed, the novel finding that MTX produces acidosis supports a pathway recently described in which MTX produces calcium influx via the sodium–hydrogen exchanger (NHX). For the first time, we found that VGSC blockers partially blocked the MTX-induced calcium influx, intracellular acidification, and protected against the short-term MTX-induced cytotoxicity. The results presented here provide the first report that shows the comparative effects of two prototypical ciguatera toxins, CTX 3C and MTX, in a neuronal model. We hypothesize that the analogies and differences in the bioactivity of these two toxins, produced by the same microorganism, may be strongly linked to their chemical structure

    Synthetic Ciguatoxin CTX 3C Induces a Rapid Imbalance in Neuronal Excitability

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    Ciguatera is a human global disease caused by the consumption of contaminated fish that have accumulated ciguatoxins (CTXs), sodium channel activator toxins. Symptoms of ciguatera include neurological alterations such as paraesthesiae, dysaesthesiae, depression, and heightened nociperception, among others. An important issue to understand these long-term neurological alterations is to establish the role that changes in activity produced by CTX 3C represent to neurons. Here, the effects of synthetic ciguatoxin CTX 3C on membrane potential, spontaneous spiking, and properties of synaptic transmission in cultured cortical neurons of 11–18 days <i>in vitro</i> (DIV) were evaluated using electrophysiological approaches. CTX 3C induced a large depolarization that decreased neuronal firing and caused a rapid inward tonic current that was primarily GABAergic. Moreover, the toxin enhanced the amplitude of miniature postsynaptic inhibitory currents (mIPSCs), whereas it decreased the amplitude of miniature postsynaptic excitatory currents (mEPSCs). The frequency of mIPSCs increased, whereas the frequency of mEPSCs remained unaltered. We describe, for the first time, that a rapid membrane depolarization caused by CTX 3C in cortical neurons activates mechanisms that tend to suppress electrical activity by shifting the balance between excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission toward inhibition. Indeed, these results suggest that the acute effects of CTX on synaptic transmission could underlie some of the neurological symptoms caused by ciguatera in humans

    Chronic Ciguatoxin Treatment Induces Synaptic Scaling through Voltage Gated Sodium Channels in Cortical Neurons

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    Ciguatoxins are sodium channels activators that cause ciguatera, one of the most widespread nonbacterial forms of food poisoning, which presents with long-term neurological alterations. In central neurons, chronic perturbations in activity induce homeostatic synaptic mechanisms that adjust the strength of excitatory synapses and modulate glutamate receptor expression in order to stabilize the overall activity. Immediate early genes, such as Arc and Egr1, are induced in response to activity changes and underlie the trafficking of glutamate receptors during neuronal homeostasis. To better understand the long lasting neurological consequences of ciguatera, it is important to establish the role that chronic changes in activity produced by ciguatoxins represent to central neurons. Here, the effect of a 30 min exposure of 10–13 days <i>in vitro</i> (DIV) cortical neurons to the synthetic ciguatoxin CTX 3C on Arc and Egr1 expression was evaluated using real-time polymerase chain reaction approaches. Since the toxin increased the mRNA levels of both Arc and Egr1, the effect of CTX 3C in Na<sub>V</sub> channels, membrane potential, firing activity, miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs), and glutamate receptors expression in cortical neurons after a 24 h exposure was evaluated using electrophysiological and western blot approaches. The data presented here show that CTX 3C induced an upregulation of Arc and Egr1 that was prevented by previous coincubation of the neurons with the Na<sub>V</sub> channel blocker tetrodotoxin. In addition, chronic CTX 3C caused a concentration-dependent shift in the activation voltage of Na<sub>V</sub> channels to more negative potentials and produced membrane potential depolarization. Moreover, 24 h treatment of cortical neurons with 5 nM CTX 3C decreased neuronal firing and induced synaptic scaling mechanisms, as evidenced by a decrease in the amplitude of mEPSCs and downregulation in the protein level of glutamate receptors that was also prevented by tetrodotoxin. These findings identify an unanticipated role for ciguatoxin in the regulation of homeostatic plasticity in central neurons involving Na<sub>V</sub> channels and raise the possibility that some of the neurological symptoms of ciguatera might be explained by these compensatory mechanisms

    Autumnalamide, a Prenylated Cyclic Peptide from the Cyanobacterium <i>Phormidium autumnale</i>, Acts on SH-SY5Y Cells at the Mitochondrial Level

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    Filamentous cyanobacteria of the genus <i>Phormidium</i> have been rarely studied for their chemical diversity. For the first time, the cultivable <i>Phormidium autumnale</i> was shown to produce a prenylated cyclic peptide named autumnalamide (<b>1</b>). The structure of this peptide was fully determined after a deep exploration of the spectroscopic data, including NMR and HRMS. Interestingly, a prenyl moiety was located on the guanidine end of the arginine amino acid. The absolute configurations of most amino acids were assessed using enantioselective GC/MS analysis, with <sup>13</sup>C NMR modeling being used for the determination of d-arginine and d-proline. The effects of <b>1</b> on sodium and calcium fluxes were studied in SH-SY5Y and hNav 1.6 HEK cells. When the Ca<sup>2+</sup> influx was stimulated by thapsigargin, strong inhibition was observed in the presence of <b>1</b>. As a consequence, this compound may act by disrupting the normal calcium uptake of this organelle, inducing the opening of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore, which results in the indirect blockade of store-operated channels

    Design and Synthesis of Skeletal Analogues of Gambierol: Attenuation of Amyloid-β and Tau Pathology with Voltage-Gated Potassium Channel and <i>N</i>-Methyl-d-aspartate Receptor Implications

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    Gambierol is a potent neurotoxin that belongs to the family of marine polycyclic ether natural products and primarily targets voltage-gated potassium channels (K<sub>v</sub> channels) in excitable membranes. Previous work in the chemistry of marine polycyclic ethers has suggested the critical importance of the full length of polycyclic ether skeleton for potent biological activity. Although we have previously investigated structure–activity relationships (SARs) of the peripheral functionalities of gambierol, it remained unclear whether the whole polycyclic ether skeleton is needed for its cellular activity. In this work, we designed and synthesized two truncated skeletal analogues of gambierol comprising the EFGH- and BCDEFGH-rings of the parent compound, both of which surprisingly showed similar potency to gambierol on voltage-gated potassium channels (K<sub>v</sub>) inhibition. Moreover, we examined the effect of these compounds in an in vitro model of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) obtained from triple transgenic (3xTg-AD) mice, which expresses amyloid beta (Aβ) accumulation and tau hyperphosphorylation. In vitro preincubation of the cells with the compounds resulted in significant inhibition of K<sup>+</sup> currents, a reduction in the extra- and intracellular levels of Aβ, and a decrease in the levels of hyperphosphorylated tau. In addition, pretreatment with these compounds reduced the steady-state level of the <i>N</i>-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor subunit 2A without affecting the 2B subunit. The involvement of glutamate receptors was further suggested by the blockage of the effect of gambierol on tau hyperphosphorylation by glutamate receptor antagonists. The present study constitutes the first discovery of skeletally simplified, designed polycyclic ethers with potent cellular activity and demonstrates the utility of gambierol and its synthetic analogues as chemical probes for understanding the function of K<sub>v</sub> channels as well as the molecular mechanism of Aβ metabolism modulated by NMDA receptors